Damn wasps. Demon wasps. Demon airship-flying wasps. And the Bloodwing's Revenge just popped up in the middle of a damn fleet of these bastards! Everywhere I turn the periscope, there's more of them!
I'm below deck. We're too high up for me to be on the bridge without insulation and a rebreather, which the airship-pirate vampire who owns this clockwork antique doesn't need. He's got a deep-sea diver suit in the closet, but I can't even lift the brass helmet!
Speaking of whom, Aleister is manning the weapons cockpit upstairs. It sounds like he's got some rotating cannons blazing from all sides of the ship. Look at that smoke. Black powder? Really? Please tell me you don't expect me to reload all of those myself?
Qlippothic's fused herself to the helm. I've got my toeclaws digging into the dusty old carpet with each step because she's got the ship jerking around every which way. Is she trying to shake more wasps off the ship?
I hear buzzing outside the porthole. BAST! That yellow-striped buzzer tried to stab me through the glass! Why is he holding a plank of rotted...oh BAST that's part of the damn HULL!
I turn on the intercom. "Guys! They're trying to rip open the ship down here!"
Qli responds. "I'm trying to keep them of off the main airbag! We've lost half our ropes already! I can barely manage a controlled descent..."
"Deploy the side balloons?"
"Not yet. They will block the chain cannons. Beginning distress signal. Mayday-mayday, invasion fleet intercepted at following coordinates..."
There has to be something I can do...wait...all this machinery...why is this so familiar? I've got it! The Time Window!
I hope Aleister doesn't mind that I'm scratching sigils through his moth-eaten carpet...there...black plumes of energy spreading through and around the ship...
"KOEN! Vat are you doink down zere?"
"I'm using my Void Alchemy to negate the weight of the ship! That will keep us from crashing long enough for us to tesseract the ship to safety!
"KOEN! I do not have the energy to tesseract this entire ship! Even if I wasn't busy with evasive maneuvers..."
"You shake off the bugs! I'll use the Time Window to find a safe timestream to jump into and the void-aura will negate the mass of the ship for you to carry us through!"
"You are turnink mein vessel into a TARDIS?"
Operating the dials...not enough energy for anti-paradox to make a back-jump...has to be the future...
"Und you zink you are some kind of TIME LORD?"
A future full of giant steel hives dotting the landscape? Not good...
"SCHTOP zis instant! I declare it VERBOTEN..."
"Pipe down you bloodwyne-swilling old coot! I can't build Mason techno-magic but I can sure as Hell use it! I figured out my Dad's Retroactive Continuity thing before, didn't I? Sort of? And I've been a Companion for Purdie Uggleh and Professor B!"
There's a city...too much static! Is that a demon with six wings on the tower? Still too blurry! Fine-tuning the fateline axis. No, not a demon...
"Ammunition depleted! Ejecting cannons! Deploying siderail balloons!"
Not a demon... That looks like...
"I've got a lock! Qli! Prepare to jump! Fifty-two-years-one-month-twelve-hours-thirty-six-seconds!"
"Koen! You can't! You'll age squared to the jump!"
I've got that angel in my sights...
"Explosions off der pert und starboard! Balloon rails destroyed!"
"TESSERACT IN THREE! TWO! ONE! WARP!"
The ship is pulled through a swirling nimbus of Nothing laced with galvanic torrents of liquefied time. Currents in directions I can't point to tugging at my insides. The Void protects me like a cloak. My personal zero chamber. My black fur is growing back in. My nails are growing longer and sharper. Some currents are getting through, enough for me to see the light of that gleaming metropolis that is hopefully not full of wasps.
Next stop...Seraph City.
Back in the swing
10 months ago