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Sci-Fi Thursday! All you need to know is that Sci and crew are heading out to meet with Marcus and rescue Billy.

The cemetery isn’t far, twelve short blocks up 4th Avenue. The street is deadly quiet and I hear in my head music from Western movies. All we are missing is the desert, tumble weeds, and maybe a horse or two.

I can see a group of what looks like eight standing in front of the gates. I too thought of the cemetery as a place to hole up, it has the advantage of land and gates but lacks buildings and is too large to defend properly. As we get closer I see Billy on his knees, his arms are tied behind his back and the left side of his head is a bloody mess from where they removed his ear. They didn’t even bother to bandage it and the blood is caked down his neck and shoulder. His face is full of defeat but his eyes burn with rage. Good, I think at him, when the time comes use that. A large stocky man is standing in the middle and the girl messenger is standing slightly behind him. Apparently, I was wrong and she’s Marcus’ lady, which tells me that he is mean and drunk on his power.

We square off, our five to his eight.

“Marcus.”

“Sci. I’m glad you can follow directions. People these days.” This raises a titter among his people. He tilts his head. “You really are one big bitch, you know that?” More tittering and I see movement in two of the trees. So, ten at least.

“Hand her over.” I wait, letting him blow hot air. “Are you deaf?” He demands, losing patience already. “Let me tell you how this is going to go…”

“Oh, please do, I can hardly wait,” I say. His group titters again. Then realizing their mistake, hush quickly.

“You’re going to hand over the Grower and then I’m going to kill you the same way that you killed my brother. And, just because I feel like it, I’m going to kill everyone else except that one, some of my boys will have use for that one,” he says nodding his chin at Chryse.

Good luck with that, she’ll go down fighting before anyone can lay a finger on her.

I tilt my head mimicking him, “You aren’t very good at this are you?” He narrows his eyes. “You haven’t exactly provided me a platform from which to negotiate.”

“Negotiate with this,” he says as he pulls an actual revolver from the back of his pants all gangster style. The absurdity of it all makes me laugh and once I start I can’t stop. Laughter continues bubbling from my mouth, rolling across the small gap between us covering him and his people in utter confusion. This is not how he planned it. I keep taking deep breaths to answer him but the giggles keep coming. My composure is shot and my sides are starting to ache with the effort of wrestling for control. I feel tears start to leak out of the corner of my eyes and I see Billy shift his legs, getting ready to spring, to knock Marcus down from behind and it’s as if a wire goes live. I suddenly can feel where all my people are, I can feel us get ready as a group and I wonder if I’m going crazy until Billy does spring and at that exact moment shots ring out from roof tops and bodies start to fall.

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