Fire in the Hole!
Stunned by the realisation that the four-eyed robot is wielding what appears to be a bomb, you find yourself rooted to the spot, unable to move or speak. Luckily for you, Samantha Slade doesn't have the same problem. Hoisting a crate of vodka over her head, she grunts with the effort of hurling it at the barman, who raises his free arm to deflect it. As his metal forearm strikes the crate, the bottles within shatter, soaking him and the floor around him in alcohol. Samantha dives for her gun, hitting the floor and reaching out to grab it as she slides along, but the robot moves faster, dashing forward to kick her in the gut and knock her onto her back. As Sam moans in pain he lifts one foot to place it on her neck, pressing down hard. "No, no, no," the vodka-drenched robot scolds, wiggling a finger. "You've had one too many, my dear, and I won't stand for this behaviour in my bar!" "Get yore steenking foot off!" a tinny voice pipes up behind you, and you glance down to see Stogie stomping forward, his tip glowing red with the sizzling flames of anger.
"Carlos Sanchez Robo-stogie, he speet in yore eye. Every one of them!" Despite his bravado, you know there's not a lot the little robot can do...but there is, you realise, something you can do. Even as a half-baked plan forms in your head, you find yourself stooping to snatch the stogie from the floor before tossing it towards the robot, shouting "Fire in the Hole" and turning away. "Ay Caramba!" Stogie shrieks, as he collides with the villain - and his burning tip ignites the vodka. The four-eyed imposter bursts into flames as Stogie drops to the floor, landing on his feet and running for cover. Samantha rolls clear when the robot takes its foot from her neck, shaking its arms and legs in an attempt to put out the flames. "Samantha!" you cry, grabbing her blaster and tossing it to her. Pushing herself to her knees, she catches the gun with ease, turning it on the burning robot and opening fire. A single bolt blasts forth, hitting the robot between its four eyes and blowing its CPU out through the back of its head. As the burning hunk of metals falls backwards, the gift-wrapped bomb drops from its hand into Sam's waiting grasp. Without hesitation, she rips away the timer and pulls out the wires, deactivating the device and averting disaster. "Are you okay?" you ask, coming to kneel beside her. "I am now," she says, flashing a smile and brushing hair from her eyes. "Thanks." "No problem. What was that all about?" Before Sam can answer, the door bursts open and Tharg rushes in, his eyes wide as he looks all around. "Slade? Are you here?" he calls, taking in everything before his eyes settle on you and Samantha. "Did you stop it? Are we safe?" "Relax, boss. Of course I stopped it. I don't take on jobs with the aim of blowing them." Tharg walks over to stare at the charred remains of the disguised robot and kicks at it in disgust. "Bloody Zrags," he curses. "They're getting good at this. Quaquaem Blagg, if I hadn't stumbled across those blithering idiots and found out what they were up to..." "Sure, no problem, any time, my pleasure," Sam mutters, shaking her head as you help her to her feet. "And who might you be?" Tharg asks, and you notice he is pointing a finger at you. "Me? Oh. Ummm...well...you see...I...umm...that is..." "He's with me," Samantha saves, hooking her arm through yours and cosying up beside you. "I brought him. As my date. Got a problem with that?" "Oh... No. Of course not. Whatever works. You did a zarjaz job, both of you. Thanks." "You're welcome." "Would have been a disaster if the Zrags' plan worked," Tharg continues, talking to himself as he crouches down to poke and prod at the robot. "Would have ruined the party. I can't believe they managed to sneak this in..." "So," Sam says to you, reaching down to retrieve Stogie and slip him back down between her breasts. "I could use a drink after that - wanna come to the jazz bar with me? I hear Durham Red is performing later. Some kind of traditional vampiric strip dance. Should be a laugh." "You sold me," you reply, walking with the Robo-hunter back into the bar, leaving Tharg behind muttering about the Dictators. You notice the bar brawl is over, every single participant down on their knees with their hands in the air while waiter-Dredd strolls amongst them, calling for back-up on his radio and whacking the occassional head. He looks up as you and Samantha make your way to the door. You half expect him to shout "Freeze, creeps!"...but instead he simply lifts a hand and greeting and turns his attention back on a kneeling G.I, who is giving him some lip. Grinning like a loon, you take Samantha's hand and leave the bar, at ease now that you are a welcome guest at the party, and looking forward to the night of your life.
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