'Sir, I'll go ahead and fire up the PF.' Dag shuffled anxiously from foot to foot but stilled under Adam's firm grip on his arm.
'Translation please?' Adam's eyebrows rose.
'Oh, well, um, the PF? That's 'Personal Flyer' Sir.' Dag beamed. 'She's the little red one over in the front line Sir.'
Dag pointed in the direction he wanted Adam to look and in doing so broke the older mans' hold on his arm. Without waiting for confirmation the boy
shot away from Adam making a beeline for a sweet little trick of a 'PF' sparkling red as an Earth cherry.
'Well, the boy has good taste...' Adam chuckled under his breath and hearing someone approaching ducked between the corner of the outbuilding and a
large leafing palm growing in the last bit of natural green just where the tarmac took over.
'Come on men we're back to the fighter.' Adam heard a voice used to being obeyed. 'There's an unidentified craft out there and it's refusing
to respond to communiques.'
'The Voice' dropped his arm and turned to address two other pilots who paused before Adam's hiding place.
'Awww Captain but we just got here!' The shortest of the trio whined nasally. 'You're sayin we gots'ta go up again without even a stiff drink an
a piss? What's wrong with the boys she's got flying now Cap'n?' Ringing a finger around the stiff collar of his parade uniform 'Shorty'
dropped his hand and shot his cuffs in disgust.
'They're not sayin.' The Captain sighed and shielding his eyes looked up into the sky. 'Come on men, we're ordered back to wing and to get it
up quick and hard.'
'Sounds like orders from my Mrs.' The third flier piped up wiggling his eyebrows and giving a ribald chortle.
'Yeahhhh, when she'd talkin' to me mate' Shorty rejoined and ducked a punch aimed his way.
The duo shadow boxed until their Captain, his shoulders weighed down by multiple braids and stars, waved the bantering pair to attention and spoke
into a communications device strapped to his wrist.
'Orders received LAB-Com, we'll be in the sky in 3.' Without lowering his arm the Officer continued. 'LAB, you're sure this command comes
straight from the ol' Bat...' Stumbling on the insult a dull blush crept up his neck to cast a bloom over his face.
'Eye that Captain.' Came the hard response from the communicator, 'On President Bransom's
orders Sir.' The President in questions
screaming could be heard streaming through the LAB-Coms microphone before the transmission was cut.
'Figures she'd be standing right there.' The Officer chuckled away and rubbed his fingers through his hair at his wingmen who were near to
hysterics. 'Come on you jokers we'd better hop-to lads before 'Herself' comes down here to plant a boot up our ar...'
Before Adam could catch the rest of his words the three broke into run laughing their way back to their fighter.
Envying their camaraderie but not their orders Adam turned his attention back to Dag, who as luck would have it had been sighted by the Officer and
called to task.
Adam, not willing to leave a boy alone to face three men left his hiding place to take Dag's side.
"Look 'Boyo' I told you to tend to our chucks!' The Officer, all business towered over Dag who fairly shook with anger.
'Sir, yes Sir, but I've been commanded to...' Dag, his voice breaking, his eyes wide as saucers was torn between being relieved and embarrassed
when Adam appeared at the officers shoulder.
'Officer!' Adam's voice boomed with authority brooking no argument. The three pilots turned, salutes performed before realizing the man behind
the shout was a civilian.
'And you are?' Hackles up at having been caught saluting to a man who he was sure never wore a uniform the Captain eyed Adam from his shiny black
boots to his long hair caught up in it's queue with obvious disdain.
'Sorry mate, this is no time for a big dog contest'.
Without checking his gaze Adam flashed the Officer and his co-pilots a look as potent as if he'd popped them with a shot from a neuro-gun. In
response the three went glassy eyed and not feigning a little confusion looked around blankly forgetting the presence of Adam, Dag and their
'How'd you do that Sir...' Dag stalled scratching his forehead completely mesmerized by what he'd just witnessed.
'Just come on!' Adam yelled grabbing Dag by his collar and jerking him into a run.
Rounding the little red PT jet Adam barely waited for the hatch to open before he offered Dag his palms, took the boys foot in his cupped hands and
tossed him overhead into the cockpit. Flipping himself over the side Adam slipped easily into the pilots seat as the engine purred to life. Adam
had barely begun to familiarize himself with the control panel when the first blast rocked the area.
'Sir!' Dag screamed in terror as a blast concussion sent them spinning sideways just as Adam had them shooting up in a vertical lift. Adam
struggled with the controls as the PT was buffeted back and forth by blasts raining down without ceasing.
'Adjust the auto-pilot' Adam bellowed over the noise to the boy, 'Choose 'Emergency-Egress' and hit 'Confirm!' Adam struggled to maneuver the
little jet around a pair of mushrooming clouds of debris as Dag frantically began punching keys on his console. With trembling fingers Dag hit
'confirm'. The PF didn't respond.
'She's not responding Sir!' Dag screamed again just as Adam barely strong-armed then out from behind the afterburners of a huge fighter who'd cut
in front of the PF.
'Hit it again!' Adam felt a real jolt of fear, his arms were giving out, he couldn't hold her much longer.
Dag punched 'confirm' again and again until with a yell that echoed Adams the pair were slammed deep into their seats with crushing g-force as the
PF's computers took over her flight.
As the PF dodged flack and shrapnel they got a look at the battle going on around them.
And it was something out of a nightmare.
Below LAB was being systematically destroyed, disintegrating under a brutal and ruthless attack. Above and around them fighters taking massive damage
crisscrossed the sky. Concussions came at them so fast and hard little PF was tossed about like a feather in a hurricane, the auto-pilot having gone
all but useless. Dag, terrified and screaming reached out a hand and grasped Adam's arm with a strength that nearly crushed the larger man's
'It's alright Dag! We'll make it out.' Adam screamed but seeing the terrified look on the boys face knew what he had to do.
Still under g-force his face feeling like his skin was pealing from his skull Adam turned to catch Dag's terrified eyes.
'Look at me!' Adam yelled.
Dag tried to do as he was told but his eyes clenched shut when a massive explosion turned the PF in a complete circle nose to tail then wing tip to
'DAG! LOOK AT ME NOW SON!" Adam screamed.
Turning his head ever so slowly Dag finally opened his eyes and looked at Adam, a slightly startled expression crossing his face before his features
as a whole softened and took on a serene glow.
Adam's eyes bored into the petrified youths reading into his very soul. Finding what he sought Adam claimed the best portion of Dag's mind and
planted memories there, memories and dreams of everything the boys heart desired.
Dag walking tall in clothes that matched Adam's own. A cherry-red PF like the one they rode in Dag at the stick. And then, something hidden deep in
his hopes, something Adam almost missed, Dag wanted the love of a girl. So in Dag's memories he walked arm in arm with a bright haired, sweet
smiled little LAB Rat who's image Adam tore from Dag's heart to play against the backdrop of his eyelids.
Breaking the hypnotic gaze Adam watched as Dag's whole body relaxed his mind swimming in a sea of delight, the raging battle all but forgotten. Adam
had given him peace.
In the next instant the PF took a massive hit the sound of screeching metals and shields deafening.
Thunder exploded in Adam's ears leaving a great nothingness in it's wake as an emergency helm dropped over his head. Taking another tremendous
shock the PF's pilot seat opened to envelope Adam in a life saving cocoon. Arms drawn into the protective shell the last thing Adam felt was Dag's
grip loosen and fall away, the last thing he heard a bloodcurdling scream coming from the boy beside him.
When Adam regained consciousness all was calm, the battle over, the faint hiss of the stale oxygen circulating through his helm all that could be
'Dag?' Adam whispered painfully, his voice muffled by the helm. 'Dag?'
But Dag didn't answer.
Turning his head slowly Adam found the front quarter of the PF and everything in it had been blown completely away.
[edit on 4-8-2010 by silo13]