(If you want, buy their previous rampages for $2 by clicking on the covers below.)
Driving into the town of Congress, Cassidy swerves down a street in the hopes of losing their pursuers for a few minutes. She continues taking turns and heading away from the main street until she finds an abandoned house. The wide garage is open and empty, which makes it easy for her to get the jeep inside. Lloyd hurries to close the door before any of the hunters come by, the sound of motorcycles getting closer. Once they are out of sight, the pair grab several of their weapons and speak through hand signals in case their enemies are within earshot. They freeze when something drives by, a loud crash telling them that the large vehicle tried to get up on the curb. Waiting in silence, they do not hear anything other than the wind and the occasional singing bird. While Lloyd forces the door to the house open, Cassidy pushes a button on the inside of the driver’s side door to set the defensive system. She pats her baby before a faint crackle tells her that the body has been electrified.
“I’m using the sniper rifle until they get too-” the mercenary begins as they walk into the house. They both hear the clicks of machineguns and dive behind a kitchen island before the hunters start firing into the house. “Sons and daughters of bitches! I’d love to know how they found us, so let’s keep one mostly alive for questioning. Are you going to be any help, Mr. No Guns?”
“You can do so much better than that, Ms. Trigger Licker,” Lloyd replies while crawling to the other end of their shield. He is about to lean out and shoot a cyanide paintball when he spots three shadows at a window. “They’re going to surround us and just blast away. Be nice if we could duck and they hit each other, but there are too many tchotchkes in the way. Really hope I said that word right. Maybe knick-knacks would be better. Either way, we need to get out of here before we’re fish in a barrel.”
Spotting the men outside, Cassidy snaps her fingers to get Lloyd on his knees and put his fingers in his ears. She places her sniper rifle on his steady shoulder and braces her feet as best as she can, the position too awkward for her to be sure of her aim. The shot shatters the window and hits the man in the middle, but the others run back to the street before she can get them. Another spray of bullets comes through the back door, many of the shots pinging off the cars on the front lawn. Believing that they are under attack, the main force takes cover behind their vehicles and begin blaming each other for various mistakes. Swinging her large weapon around, Cassidy fires through the holes in the hopes of scaring the enemies away. Watching the next barrage strafe toward them, she drops to her stomach and kicks Lloyd’s legs out from under him. They can feel the bullets pass over them, neither survivor in a position to return fire.
Putting down her sniper rifle, Cassidy draws her pistols and is about to stand when Lloyd hisses for her attention. He jerks his thumb at the broken window, but the mercenary shakes her head at the thought of being in the open. A loud rolling from the garage ends their argument before it begins and they hurry to their only way out. Ignoring the glass shards, the pair clamber through the window at the same time the jeep’s defense system is set off. Electricity crackles and someone screams in agony, the power enough to send the smell of cooking flesh throughout the house. Distracted by the unexpected trap, the hunters do not notice their prey escaping until it is too late.
“They’re going to wreck the whole town at this rate,” Cassidy says while they run into another yard. Gunfire and explosions can be heard behind them as their enemies destroy every possible hiding place in their line of sight. “Not that this place is very big. At least there aren’t many fences to worry about. You realize that we can’t leave town without my baby, right? We’d die out there without supplies and that’s not counting getting run down by these bastards. I say we find a tightly packed place and use the Salty Mongoose tactic.”
“That only works if we have three grenades and a frozen pizza,” Lloyd points out, skidding to a stop. He tackles his partner behind a shed before the passing hunter spots them, the car silently moving down the street. “They’re all over the place and firing at anything that looks remotely human. I assume. Be weird if they’re simply blasting away at every building in the hopes of us being in there having a tea party. I saw some storage units a turn or two ago, so maybe we can hide in one of those. Should be easier to escape or indulge in unadulterated slaughter once the sun goes down.”
“I remember, but that requires crossing two streets and a few yards,” the mercenary replies, her eyes closed in concentration. She listens to all of the gunfire to figure out where everyone is and count how many enemies they have. “Think there are fifteen out there and they’ve scattered around the area. If they see us running then it doesn’t matter where we hide. There’s no way we can hold out for night, so we have to be careful. Knew I should have brought a machinegun instead of the sniper rifle.”
“By the way, how’s your shoulder?”
“Why are you asking that?”
“I mean, it’s a big gun and you’re kind of slender.”
“The muscles are a little sore, but I can still beat the shit out of these idiots.”
“Okay, no need to pop the claws.”
“Coast seems clear, so let’s go.”
Weapons ready for action, they sprint out of their hiding place and watch for signs of enemy patrols. Passing through the yards, they catch glimpses of motorcycles and cars, but those inside are busy firing at the opposite side of the street. Not slowing down, the pair race across the road at the same time a pair of motorcycles come around a corner. They hop over a low fence and dive behind a leafless bush before the hunters spot them. Cassidy keeps her pistols trained on the riders in case they look in her direction, the temptation to shoot them now almost stronger than her caution. Knowing that she might bring more enemies to their location, she remains patient and holds her breath while the motorcycles pass by. The man and woman randomly spray the surrounding buildings with bullets, the barrages focusing on windows and doors. As an afterthought, the couple turns back around and shoots out the tires of every parked car until they reach the far end of the street.
With the danger gone, Cassidy and Lloyd get up and continue to run as fast as their tired bodies will let them. Sweat pours down their faces and they silently wish that they remembered to grab some water from the jeep. Coming to the second street, the pair do not bother to check for enemies as they hurry across. Nobody is in sight and they no longer hear the destruction being caused by their enemies. Taking advantage of being alone, they calm down enough to think straight and watch their surroundings. Cassidy hisses to get them to stop near an abandoned wheelbarrow, which she puts her denim jacket under for safekeeping. Feeling the sun on her bare arms, she still feels cooler thanks to not having the extra layer. Getting the idea, Lloyd strips off his drenched shirt and is about to do the same with his pants before his friend makes a fake gagging noise. With a friendly smile, he stops his striptease and goes back to leading the way to the storage sheds.
As they reach their possible hiding place, they can see that the wall is too high for them to scale, but there is a gaping hole a few yards away. Inching toward the opening, they find themselves growing nervous by the second. With no sign of their enemies, the pair are unsure if they are making the right decision or cornering themselves. Peeking around the corner, they see that the area is covered in broken machinery, which makes it difficult to spot anyone lurking in wait. Prepared to dive for cover or retreat, Lloyd leads the way into the complex while Cassidy walks backwards to watch their rear. They weave through the rusty cars and piles of garbage that are so old that they are mostly dirt. A threatening rattle can be heard from a hidden snake, but the reptile remains hidden instead of revealing itself. It is not until they reach the middle of the walled off area that they realize that the serpent is angry about another intruder. With a chorus of victorious cries, the hunters leap out of their hiding places and surround their prey. Machineguns and rifles are aimed at Cassidy and Lloyd, but nobody dares to be the first to shoot.
“You two gave us a fun chase, but this ending was inevitable,” a white-haired man declares as he takes a step forward. He scowls when his companions advance as well, bringing him back into the circle. “Grymer was right that you’re out to find Ben. Not sure what that fossil has to make our leaders worry, but best not to take chances. Personally, I find it amazing that you found his hideout faster than we did. Almost like we have a mole.”
“Only your dermatologists know for sure,” Lloyd replies, his head tilting to the side. His eyes widen and he grins, which causes those in front of him to shiver in fear. “Wow. Doing the crazy look really does work. I need to do this more often. By the way, we have no idea who this Ben is, which is a shame. Sounds like he’d be the one to keep us in this adventure. Just imagine if you never mentioned him. We would have gone on our way and never searched for this mysterious man.”
“I say we shoot him!” a dark-haired woman shouts, plumes of steam wafting off her slightly charred body. Her shaking hands are on the verge of pulling the trigger, but never goes through the motion. “There’s no reason for us to keep them alive. They’re dangerous. You saw what they did in Vegas. They even fed Mrs. Klein to her favorite bear. Monsters like these should be destroyed.”
An older woman clicks her tongue in disapproval before whispering, “While I agree, they might be useful for a bit. If they can undo the defenses on the jeep that hurt you then we can add it to our fleet. I’ve heard they have an impressive arsenal in there. Let’s kill them after we get their stuff.”
“Not to mention we’re all out of bullets because we shot up too many houses.”
“Damn it, Karla!”
Cassidy calmly puts her guns away and draws a knife from her boot while Lloyd cracks his knuckles. The hunters continue to hold up their guns, half of them frantically pulling the trigger in the hopes of something coming out. With nothing more than pathetic clicks to stop them, the two killers dive at their enemies. Slashing and stabbing at their flailing targets, the pair leave five bodies in their wake by the time they break through the circle. Cassidy is the first to rush back and she stays low to avoid the swinging guns, her knife slashing the black-haired woman’s hamstring. She whirls around and draws her pistol while holding her blade out for her first target to fall onto. Three rapid shots take out the nearest hunters and the rest move away, which only brings them closer to Lloyd. Covered in blood and yodeling at the top of his lungs, the serial killer decapitates and dismembers everyone in his path. When only the white-haired hunter is left, he throws his weapon away and breaks into an odd run that involves leaning very far back and pumping his arms. Instead of getting away, he goes back and forth between Cassidy and Lloyd, who make no move to kill the panicking man. When he finally tries to run around the serial killer, he only gets a few steps before his head is lopped off and a bullet punches through his back.
“That was impressive,” a hooded figure says from atop a broken truck. Slowly climbing down, the mysterious man waves for Cassidy and Lloyd to follow him. “A mutual friend told me that I had company. I would have come out earlier, but I was eating my lunch. Please come along and we can discuss our future. Mostly that the only way we have one is if we work together and trust each other. Hurry up or your soup will get cold.”