Chapter 13 A’Dfukl
"Uz'En?" asked Olivia, looking confused.
They all grabbed at their ears, as the sound reverberated through the room. The nanobots quickly grew thicker and thicker around their ears, until finally, there was relief.
"You will die!"
(DUSTIN! THERE IS AN ALPHA BOT INSIDE THE ENEMY, ATTEMPTING TO GAIN CONTROL OF OUR NANOBOTS. YOU NEED TO GET CLOSER TO MAINTAIN CONTROL!)
'Hunt it down, if you have to tear into the thing, do it, just don't kill the alien!'
The alien before them started thrashing again, as the nanobots that made up its shackles started to swarm over it. Dustin glanced out of the corner of his eye, and saw Jake hunched down in the corner of the room.
"Tell me what I want to know, and I won't prolong your death," growled Dusti angrily.
"I shall tell you nothing!"
(THERE IS NANOBOT ACTIVITY NEAR THE CONSOLES.)
Dustin turned toward the far wall, to see a long row of computer terminals. They were covered in dust, but he could see lights blinking in the dark. If he moved over to them to see what was going on, he would lose control of the nanobots holding the alien. Growling under his breath at the childishness of it all, he marched over to it, grabbed it by one of its horns and dragged it towards the consoles.
It gave out another screech, but they were all much more protected this time, so it did next to nothing.
(THE NANOBOTS SEEM TO BE PROVIDING POWER TO THE COMPUTER SYSTEM. IT IS IN THE PROCESS OF BOOTING UP.)
'Do I have enough energy in my bots to continue booting them up?'
'Then initiate a change into a form that can produce electrical energy.'
(INITIATING EVOLUTION: ELECTRIC ORGAN)
Dustin could feel a pulse of energy moving through his body, and he glanced down to see his nanobots shiver as they absorbed it.
(YOU WILL BE ABLE TO POWER THE COMPUTERS YOURSELF IN A MATTER OF MINUTES. INITIATE ACQUISITION OF NANOBOTS WITHIN THE COMPUTER SYSTEM?)
'Go for it. I want to know what they are attempting to do.'
As he watched, one screen flickered to life, and a map popped up. It flickered often and a fuzz crawled across it, as it didn't receive enough energy, but it was clear enough for Dustin to recognize the surrounding landscape. A key appeared on one corner, depicting the locations of two other military bases. He studied it for a moment, then decided the two bases were actually very close. Why there were three military bases so close together, made no sense to him, but he decided he would check them all. It wasn't like he was pressed for time, or had anything else to do.
(ALL NANOBOTS HAVE BEEN ACQUIRED.)
'Great, access the database for any uncorrupted data.'
The screen flickered to a blank screen then data began to stream across it.
:Log 20957. After further investigation, it has been discovered that thirteen aliens have been living among the population. The general populace was initially against the individual body scans, but after the aliens were discovered, it has been met with widespread approval.
:Log 20958. Never again will this human population suffer at the hands of the evil Uz'En. We have all united against these shapeshifters and have purged the entire base of their presence. Unfortunately, word has spread that several may have escaped in the confusion of the roundup. It will be several days before confirmation can be made on the exact number.
:Log 20967. Word has arrived from the other bases that they have had extensive amounts of their populations disappear overnight, and a number of their interplanetary shuttles have gone missing. It appears that those who escaped from us, were able to warn any others, and they have all fled the planet. It would be nice to believe that they may all be gone, but it is feared that there may be some who chose to stay. The decision to test every inhabitant upon this bright new world has been evaluated at the expense of a possible repeat of the days during the horrible Uz'En War, and the other bases have agreed it is necessary. Word will be sent out tomorrow to the Grand Collective about the discovered threat.
:Log 20984. All attempts to reach the Grand Collective have failed. We have no choice but to abandon this planet. There are many who refuse to leave. They are willing to accept the possible ramifications of staying. Our window of escape is slotted for only a week. After that, all electronics will be at too much of a risk of being corrupted and destroyed. We would not be able to trust the jump computations for a safe jump after that.
:Log 20998. This will be the last log. Everyone who was going to leave, has already done so. Those of us who have opted to stay on this doomed planet will be able to live full lives, as will our children and grandchildren before the sun becomes too unstable. The projected time of solar eruption is slotted for around 150-200 years in the future. We have dutifully sent the same message every five minutes for the last two weeks to the Grand Collective, but the solar batteries have reached critical mass. We will have to leave the protection of the caves or resort to using torches to see. There are many among us who look forward to the future, of getting back with nature on this beautiful planet with no predators to cause us any harm. I am less enthusiastic about such a move, as I have greatly enjoyed being in charge of the computer systems since the mass exodus. Now I'll never get to finish reading my manga. I don't even know why I bother to type this, other than I want to complain to someone who might care. Maybe in the future, someone will come across this message, through some magical ability to fix decrepit old tech, and sympathize with me. If you do, thank you.
"All right! Get them out!" shrieked the alien next to him, bowing its back in pain.
(THE ALPHA INSIDE OF THE ALIEN HAS BEEN DESTROYED. ALL NANOBOTS HAVE BEEN ACQUIRED.)
Dustin ordered the nanobots to stop harming it, and crouched in front of its face so it could see him clearly.
"Tell me about the Uz'En."
"You don't even know what you are, do you?" gasped the alien, black blood bleeding from its side.
Sighing he stood, ordering the nanobots to continue burrowing through its soft tissues.
It let out another scream. "No! Stop! Ahhhh!"
"Tell me what I want to know."
Settling back down in front of the thing, he watched as it squirmed in pain as the nanobots once again left its body.
It lay there panting for a moment, and he almost stood up again.
"The Uz'En, are thieves and murderers. Your kind has started too many wars. You've killed uncountable numbers."
He glared at Dustin, who intended to wait until the count of five before sending back the nanobots. He only got to three.
"You already know how to change. That is what you are. Changelings. There is none who do not hate your kind."
It all but spit the last at him, its rage and hatred emanating from it.
"And you are?" asked Olivia, crossing her arms, unimpressed.
"I am A'Dfukl. We are the ones who will rid this galaxy of you vile things. I do not know how you have managed to control my nanobots, but it will not save you from the wrath of my siblings. They come for you even now. There is no escape for you. You will die!"