Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Remember Brown-pebble

Brown-pebble leapt across the rivulet, scaled the bank and turned to encourage the others.

"Come on! Not far now! You're nearly safe!" He checked his suit's power reading, only two pads green. Not good.

Three mice splashed through the water and raced passed him, he gave them a smile that was only painted on, and turned to scan the far bank. He could hear them coming. They were closer. Gaining on him and his charges.

He raced after the others darting through the grass and fallen leaves. He estimated the distance to the boats where his fellow Paw member, Shattered-egg, would be waiting. It was too far. The enemy would be tearing the mice apart long before they reached safety. As he ran he went over the path ahead in his mind. There was a stream with over hanging branches not too far from here, he could ambush the pursuers there, perhaps gain time for the others to reach Shattered-egg and the boat.

At the stream he jumped across and used the strength of the mecha suit to leap for the branches overhead. Swinging round a twig he ran along the branch back towards the water just in time to see the first three rats streak out of the grass. As they hit the water, he dived onto the back of the lead rat.


Shattered-egg snapped round as the three mice broke from the grass and raced down the beach towards him. He had the boat launched before they reached  him, and was waist deep in the water helping the  mice into the boat before he realised that Brown-pebble wasn't with them.

"Where's Brown-pebble?"

"He was right behind us!" All four mice stared up the beach hoping to see Brown-pebble appear. The mice in the boat gasped at the sounds of combat. Shattered-egg took one step towards the sand before remembering the mice in the boat. If he left them to help Brown-pebble they'd be defenceless.


Brown-pebble threw himself backwards as the rat jumped. He slapped into the water jamming the staff's base into the stream bed. The rat landed on the staff's point yelped and jumped back. Before brown-pebble could react he was grabbed by the leg and being swung through the air. The rat's teeth were clamped on his suit's foot and he could feel the beasts roar vibrating through the metal covering. It let go and he crashed face first into the water and a rat was on his back before he could rise.


Shattered-egg was torn. His duty was to protect the mice in the boat, but knowing his Paw-brother was fighting so near at hand wrenched at his heart. He pushed the boat a few more paces out onto the waters of the bay before halting head down with tears of frustration forming.


A space to breath. The rats surrounded Brown-pebble, five of them. They'd learnt that he was no simple mouse to be devoured as a meal, but now they saw him as a challenge to their honour. They circled, each looking for an opening.

Another pad on his power display faded to dark red. He didn't have long. He wondered if the others had reached the boat, had he given them enough time. With his power-staff lodged under one arm the power point forward, he reached in and unholstered his bolas, started them swinging.

The rat to his right was the first to move, he sent the bolas flying to entangle its feet. Another came from his right, Brown-pebble thrust the power staff into its face, the staff discharged with a crack. The third came from his front, its huge jaws closing over his face plate. He punched it in the throat as  the staff was ripped from his other paw. The warning beep sounded as the last pad of his power indicator started to fade.

The boat floated a mouse-jump from the shore. The sounds of battle continued. The mice behind Shattered-egg urged him to paddle, they wanted to leave, but he just couldn't bring himself to abandon his Paw-brother.

Duty finally won out and he picked up a paddle. Just as he slid it into the water one of the other mice silently thrust out an arm pointing up the beach. Shattered-egg whipped round to see Brown-pebble stumble without mecha suit, covered in blood onto the sand. Rats burst out of the grass to either side of him, themselves battered and bloody, but looking terrifying and huge.

Shattered-egg and Brown-pebble's eyes met, an understanding born of training and utter truth passed between them. Brown-pebble gave a yell of triumph and leapt at the nearest rat. Shattered-egg turned, furiously dug his paddle into the water as tears ran like rain over his his fur.

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