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leveled.
"Hey!" Ryan shouted. The robot took no notice, preoccupied with mangling the
corpse. "Come on, shit for brains! Get over here." He snapped off three more
rounds, leaving himself with only a couple of bullets.
This time the droid stopped, its head moving with an infinite slowness, the metal
greasy with slick blood. Its single red eye looked at the one-eyed man for long
seconds.
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Axler, James - Deathlands 16 - Moon Fate
"Be careful, Dad!" Dean called.
The hunting robot turned to focus on the boy, tak-ing a hesitant step toward him.
Blood was dripping from the steel hammerhead, and a length of muscle tissue was
trapped between the pincers.
Ryan fired off the last two shots, bringing its atten-tion back to him as the 9 mm
rounds hit it in the chest.
The metal was pitted and scored from the amount of lead poured into it, but the
droid's efficiency wasn't impaired. It took two steps that brought it right to the
edge of the dark water, where it stopped.
"Come on, you piece of rusting shit," Ryan taunted. "Here I am!"
"Dad," Dean said quietly.
"Things go wrong, head north for the others. This bastard won't follow you."
"But I "
"Just this once do like I say, Dean. Please."
One foot touched the surface of the pool, then drew back. The robot's head turned,
and the comp con-trols buzzed angrily.
Ryan holstered the empty blaster and waved his hands in the air, shouting at the
droid to keep it com-ing at him. He backed away a little deeper, nearly falling as
his foot slipped on a slimed, rotting log, buried in the mud.
The robot seemed to be assimilating a jumble of in-put information, its red eye
blinking off and on, its arms trembling at its sides. Then it made its decision and
took two bold steps into the lake, to its armored knees.
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Axler, James - Deathlands 16 - Moon Fate
Ryan was now waist-deep, drawing the heavy panga in his right hand and hefting
it, though he knew it would be like waving a piece of straw at a charging stickie.
"Come on," he urged, beckoning it deeper, closer.
The water had risen to what would have been the android's groin.
And there it stopped.
Ryan took an instant chance. Instead of moving farther away, toward the possible
safety of the lake's center, he chose to go forward, closing the gap be-tween
himself and the hunter-killer robot.
Holding out the long panga, he growled, "Lost your balls, have you?"
The droid extended its arms and swung them both toward him, but it was just too
far away. Ryan waved the steel blade, bringing the creature a cautious half step
toward him.
He needed to have it at least chest-deep for there to be a chance of the water
soaking through into its main control unit.
A small part of his brain wondered if the original inventors had taken the
precaution of sealing the comp unit and making it waterproof.
If they had, then Ryan could look forward to about ten seconds more of life.
Judging it to perfection, he offered the panga again, bringing the robot another
foot closer. Now the dark lake was lapping at the bottom of the droid's round,
fluted chest unit.
The sec hunter was making a strange chittering sound, as though a flock of tiny
metallic birds were fluttering inside its controls.
It stopped, head fixed toward its prey, arms re-tracted and froze, both pointing in
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Axler, James - Deathlands 16 - Moon Fate
Ryan's direction. For twenty, thirty seconds, nothing happened.
Ryan watched it, hawklike, waiting for the next move in the murderous game.
A minute. Two minutes.
"Think it's fucked, Dad?"
"No. Eye's lit. Can hear it still whirring away in its guts."
But the droid wouldn't move deeper.
"Fireblast!" Ryan yelled, the anger that was al-ways present suddenly breaking
out.
He dived beneath the surface of the dark pool, kicking hard with his legs as he
drove straight at the waiting robot.
His groping hand felt the rigid struts of the leg sup-ports, and he grabbed at them,
swinging and pushing himself off the bottom of the pool.
The droid responded quickly, pumping its arms be-low the frothing spray. Ryan
felt a savage blow on his right shoulder, but he hung on. The steel of the panga
clashed against the robot's other arm, blocking the slicing cutters.
It was stumbling, struggling to keep its balance, the free leg shuffling, the other
pulling against Ryan's grip.
With a titanic effort, Ryan managed to get the leg out of the mud. He braced
himself and heaved, lift-ing the heavy android, tipping it.
The droid smashed another blow into the small of Ryan's back with its hammer
hand, but it was done.
The breath exploded from Ryan as he surged out of the chill water, seeing the sec
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Axler, James - Deathlands 16 - Moon Fate
hunter disappearing, only its arms remaining above the pool.
There was a bright flame beneath the surface, like flaring phosphorus. Ryan let go
and splashed his way quickly to the shore, looking back over his shoulder, nearly
falling into the bloody bones of the mangled deer.
The android was going into appalling convulsions, as if it were suffering a high- [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]




 

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