Dedicated to Winona Laura Horowitz

Winona Ryder as Lydia Deetz

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LYDIA DEETZ AND THE KILLER DROIDS

Chapter 2: Droids out of control

Already in the afternoon, a group of youngsters were already having an aperitif.

Lydia, this cake is delicious.

"I'm glad you like it Percy, it's not good that now you can enjoy the flavor of sweetness," said Lydia.

"Heh? Don't cats get the taste of candy?" Ferris asked.

"Nope, cats don't feel the sweetness, how good it is to have taste buds for the sweetness in my human form (or cat boy)."

Their merry conversation was interrupted by an explosion. All the diners felt it and went out to see what was going on.

They saw a source of heat on the other side of the city and on this a black column of smoke, which little by little was harder to observe because the night was already falling. Suddenly, a military helicopter flew close to the street, although it movement was erratic and as it approached to Lydia, she could see that a kind of Japanese mannequin was flying the device and next to it was someone's decapitated body.

The helicopter passed by, but then a series of screams made them look back. An army of life-sized Japanese mannequins were moving on their own and attacking people. The three friends watched the scene for a few seconds still, but once their brains were connected they fled the scene.

"What's going on!" Ferris shouted.

"Girls over here," shouted Percy, pointing to a door that looked like the pantry, and everyone entered the place. Percy being outside, followed Lydia's instructions and arranged to throw the sample snack counter against the pantry door and tore a pair of tablecloths and placed them so that anyone would think someone had already looted the place and no one was inside, then Percy turned into a cat and walked through the door half open.

The minutes passed and it turned out that Lydia's tactics did work, the M-66s entered the restaurant, but did not enter the pantry.

"How long will we have to stay here," Ferris muttered.

"I don't know, I have no signal, all communications are dead."

"I can go out in my cat form and investigate," Percy suggested. Lydia was worried and ready to deny this option, when a noise indicated that someone was trying to get into the pantry. First they removed the table and then one hand tried to open the sliding metal door.

Percy stood in front of the girls and prepared to attack the android when a loud voice rumbled in the place.

"Leakey, are you here?" a woman said forcefully.

"Hey, you're human," Percy shouted.

"Who are you people?" the woman asked.

"Hey, I know you, you're that reporter, Sybel," Ferris said.

"And who are you?" Sybel asked again.

"She is Lydia, Ferris and I am Percy, we hid in this place when the mannequins attacked."

"They're not mannequins, they're experimental combat droids, I suppose."

"How do you know that?" Ferris said eagerly.

As an independent reporter, I was investigating the latest militia movements, and I came across something murky, apparently a group of soldiers who I think were special ops soldiers, were putting up a blockade to stop those machines that apparently call them M-66 from entering the city center, but they were unsuccessful. The military seemed to be very tough and professional but they were (literally) destroyed by robots, some penetrated the military base at the edge of the city and took four helicopters, others took a tank but soldiers flew them with infantry missiles, the bulk of the androids headed for the city, I think they were about three hundred.

"Three hundred!" Ferris shouted, "We're not going to tell it."

"Ferris calm down," Lydia said as she approached her friend who was beginning to cry.

"And who exactly were you looking for?" Percy asked.

"To my "friend" Leakey, the imbecile left me after we were captured by the military, the position where I was arrested was also attacked, it is a miracle that I am alive. His wife owns this place, I thought he might be around, you know, the idiot stole my footage."

"Do you think it's convenient to stay here, or go somewhere else?" Lydia asked.

"It would be best if we went to the Gloval Tower, I heard the soldiers who had to find the granddaughter of a certain Dr. Matthews and move her to that place, to evacuate her with a transport ship."

"That's my grandfather! If you take us there, we can be safe," Ferris said.

"Great girl! You're our ticket out of here, but I don't think we're just walking to the Gloval Tower just like that, I think it would be best to use the sewers to that place."

The three friends were impressed with Sybel's determined gaze, with her blue hair and heavily tanned skin she looked like a cat about to attack.

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Already in the sewers, the four of them were occasionally consulting a map that Sybel had.

"I didn't think the sewers was that big," Ferris told them.

"It is so that in this way recycling and any loss of water is better managed; remember that we are in the middle of a desert and..." Lydia then stopped talking and covered her mouth with both hands.

Sybel walked a few steps forward and discovered a man's body on the spot, it was Leakey.

Sybel took the man's video camera and played the recording. It showed the military base and a blonde man with a moustache who seemed to command the place.

"Well I won't lie to you," said the man without raising his voice too much, "the M-66s are superior not only in number, but they use military tactics just like us, so we must be more assholes than they are if we want to beat them. Roland and Tiffany, destroy the arsenal but disengage the airborne missiles."

Sybel turned off the camcorder.

"Dammit Leakey, what will become of your wife and children now?"

"If your friend is here, it doesn't mean that one of those M-66s might be here," Percy said.

The girls exchanged nervous glances and rushed the march. After a long journey they arrived near the Global Tower, came out of the sewers and entered the building. It was deserted and there were signs of a confrontation. They climbed a few floors of the huge tower when they were discovered by two M-66 units, these as they all had a feminine shape and possessed one long hair of light blue color and the other a short hair, this last one looked like it was damaged of the right ankle.

Percy and the girls rushed to the top of the tower but the M-66 decided to flank them instead of going right behind them, so Percy left everything behind and pulled out his ears and tail and set off to face the M-66 with the damaged ankle.

The M-66 was fast, but Percy was fast, too, and he kicked the android into a wall, but the droid rose up in the act and pulled out one of the building's pillars and used it to crush Percy, who blocked the attack with his forearms, but the force of the impact caused the ground to sink slightly below each of his feet. The Cat Boy attacked the M-66, but even though Percy was just as strong, he had no combat training and was reduced by a wrench and could feel a broken rib.

"No, not that," Percy groaned, and with superhuman exertion he got rid of the key and by placing all his strength in one blow, he pierced the chest of the M-66, destroying it in the act.

Lydia hurried to help her friend and at that point the long-haired M-66 jumped over them. Then the android was hit by a burst of shrapnel coming from a military transport ship. The M-66 was fired through one of the large inner crystals of the building and then a voice through the loudspeaker of the ship told them to climb to the top of the building where they would be rescued.

Friends did, but after climbing a long way, they heard an explosion, the M-66 had managed to knock down the transport ship at the cost of his right arm and resumed the chase of the girls and Percy.

Although the M-66 was trying to cool down with the help of her "hair", it had been damaged and was no longer able to move quickly, however, this did not help the girls very much as they were very tired from climbing the dozens of floors without the help of an elevator and Percy was already grieving their wounds.

They reached a corridor near the top of the building and saw two soldiers waiting for them.

"Hurry up on this freight elevator," a soldier told them, when the M-66 knocked down the door and attacked the soldiers. The M-66 did not have the right arm, but still with fighting movements it shot down the two men, killing one and injuring the other seriously.

"Use... the magnetic mine... use it..." the man groaned before collapsing.

The four friends entered but just as the door was about to close, the M-66 also entered the elevator.

Lydia, just in time activated the magnetic mine, which looked a little bit like one of those modern robot vacuum cleaners, and the M-66, could not touch them, but it was still inside the elevator with them, so Sybel grabbed the magnetic mine and threw it at the android causing it to come out of the elevator whose doors were still open.

The friends left the elevator and went to the heliport, but there was no ship waiting for them, they didn't know that the previous ship was destroyed and that another one would take time to reach them. A minute later, part of the building collapsed and friends had to take refuge on a column leaning down into the void, but they had no choice as the M-66 emerged from the rubble and advanced toward the four.

Sybel dropped some explosives into the M-66 but these didn't detonate.

"Why, why, why, dammit, what did I do to deserve this?" cried Sybel to the firmament, as the M-66 drew closer and closer. Then the explosives detonated and sent the android into the void. The four friends finally breathed quietly, but then the pillar they were resting on bowed more and the four rushed to the abyss, but fell into a rescue net hanging from the transport ship that came to their aid.

Once safe in the outskirts of town, Ferris met his grandfather and she interceded so that her friends would not be detained by the black ops, the Major looked at Lydia and told her that she reminded him of his late sister (who he hadn't seen since they were teenagers), so he decided that everyone was free to go. As for Percy, the soldiers took his ears and tail for a kind of fashionable appliqués and told him nothing. Sybel claimed the Major for her confiscated video camera, but she couldn't get it back.

"Well, as you say Major, you can be sure it won't be the last time you hear from me, I'll make sure to remember your name, Major Deetz..."

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Sybel POV:

The military forces of the REF after defeating the invid, returned to the planet and finished with the remaining M-66, of course there were many casualties by the REF when retaking the city, but as incredible as it may seem they covered everything up, looking for scapegoats everywhere.

The idea of using the M-66s to fight invid inorganics was a good idea, but the disaster in the city and the fact that the project was funded by General Edward who a year later staged a coup d' état against Admiral Lisa Hayes and then Admiral Rick Hunter, made the Marionette project go away.

As for Ferris, we only communicated a couple of times and that's it, but I became very close friend with Lydia and Percy, and we're still in touch. Although I would have liked to make a report about the cat boy, Lydia asked me not to do it... anyway, I couldn't say no to that face or the other face (I mean Percy in both forms). Of course, Lydia promised me that the day they decided to make their story public, I would have the exclusive.

"No, they can't arrest me, I'm innocent of the charges against me, the military is to blame, yes, that's right, they are to blame, you don't see it..." said Lynn Kyle.

I decided to stop looking at that crap and went looking for a story that was worthwhile.

THE END