Authors: Walter Knight
“No, sir,” replied the driver.
“Probably a lot. Every one of those slugs-with-shells invasive species from Old Earth is protected by treaty and are on the Protected Species List. Damn it, this is worse than running over those blue lizards and darter snails.”
“That’s snail darters, sir. They’re fish, and
they don’t live in the desert.”
“See? Extinct already because of reckless drivers like you!”
The driver and other spider marines inhaled deep breaths as the blue powder cloud drifted past.
“Don your masks!” ordered a sergeant. “That’s blue powder!”
“Whatever,” replied the driver, sucking up more of the cloud. “Are we there yet?”
“I’m there,” answered a gunner. “That’s some quality shit.”
“Everyone stop breathing!” ordered the spider commander as he examined packets still taped to the tortoise. “Anyone takes another breath, you’re under arrest!”
Marines crowded around to get a closer look at the accident. The spider commander
donned binoculars to scan the distant ridge across the minefield. Sure enough, two human pestilence lay concealed in the sage brush.
“I see them, too,” advised the sergeant, a bit wobbly. “A fat human pestilence and a skinny one. Shall we open fire?”
“Capture them for interrogation.”
* * * * *
Arthropodan marines deployed across the border, circling behind Badger and Skinny Pete, taking them by surprise. The spider commander lorded over the hapless smugglers, pointing his pistol. “You’re under arrest. Who do you work for?”
“We’re independent contractors,” answered Badger, proudly. “Hey! You spiders can’t arrest us on this side of the border. We’re American citizens. We have rights against alien abductions. It’s in the Constitution somewhere.”
“Answer my questions, or you die on the spot. Who is your contact on our side? Why didn’t you use jackrabbits?”
“Shut up with the jackrabbits.”
The spider back-clawed Badger across the face with his pistol. Badger spit out a tooth as he tried to crawl away, but was stomped on by spider marines.
“Tell him everything!” shouted Skinny Pete. “These spider dudes mean business. This ain’t Albuquerque.”
“I can’t be killed,” boasted Badger in a moment of ill-advised bravado. “I’m the loveable sidekick that survived five seasons!”
“That’s harsh, bro,” interrupted Skinny Pete, sensitive about critics’ comments. “Are you saying I’m not loveable?”
“You’re an ugly crackhead,” accused Badger.
“Man, that’s discrimination against crackheads. Talk about the junky calling the user an addict.”
“Who do you work for?” repeated the spider commander, pointing his pistol at Skinny Pete. “Tell me now!”
“The Legion,” confessed Skinny Pete, groveling at the commander’s feet. Please don’t sh
oot me. Can’t we make a deal? I can tell you the location of the Legion’s blue powder lab. Just let me go?”
“It’s under the Pizza Hut in New Gobi City.”
“Not KFC?” asked the spider commander skeptically. “That’s where I would have put it.”
“No, it’s under Pizza Hut. I swear!”
“Is the human
pestilence subspecies Italiano using Mafia connections to move blue powder across the border?”
“There’s no such thing as the Mafia,” advised Skinny Pete. “Just saying.”
“Liar!” shouted the spider commander, shooting Skinny Pete in the head. Blood splattered across Badger, terrifying the loveable crackhead even more. “Who is your commanding officer?”
“Major Lopez of the Legion?” answered Badger, pleading. “Please don’t kill me!”
“You work for the Cartel? Why are you not using drones to smuggle drugs?”
“Tortoises are lame,” conceded
Badger. “Low tech is better, my ass. I told you what you want to know about the lab. So, I can go?”
“Not likely, human pestilence.”
“Can’t we all just get along? Some of my best friends are you spiders.”
“You spiders?” asked the spider commander, offended.
The spider commander contemplated shooting the fat human pestilence in the head, leaving his body slumped over the skinny one, two more fools to be claimed by the New Gobi Desert, two less members of the Actors’ Guild. However, the matter needed more study. Feeling magnanimous, the spider commander spared Badger. If indeed this putrid jellified mass of human pestilence was loveable, he might be useful as a spy for the Empire. The spider commander dialed his translation device down to outlawed Albuquerque Mafia slang. “Yo, punk-ass fool, you will be my snitch on the inside, or I’ll whack you.”
“No way I’ll be your alien bitch,” protested Badger. “I’m a righteous dude. I don’t roll that way.”
‘Bitch.’ Yes, that’s the word I was looking for
, thought the spider commander, fine tuning the translator beyond politically correct civilized limits. “Yo, beee-otch! You will do my bidding because I got yo’ punk-ass bent over between a rock and a much harder substance, probably titanium.”
“Snitch or die!”
“Fine, bro. You got me. I’ve gone over to the Dark Side. Who would have thought Badger to be a snitch for the alien feds, in a galaxy far, far away?”
“Stop whining!” ordered the spider commander, back-clawing Badger across the face again. “You will provide details about human pestilence drug cartels.”
“Yes, lord and master gnarly spider dude.”
America’s Galactic Foreign Legion
– Book 21: Breaking Very Bad
available soon at your favorite book sources!
~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~
played football on Tucson High School’s last state championship team (1971). He served three years in the army, and the GI Bill paid for his college education, helping him earn degrees from Fort Steilacoom Community College, Central Washington State College, and the University of Puget Sound School of Law.
Walter lives a very quiet and private life, residing with his family and horses, dogs, cats, and fish atop a hill in rural Washington. Walt enjoys taking road trips to explore ghost towns and casinos.
To find out more about the author and his books, visit his web site.
~TABLE OF CONTENTS~