6.6 Boss Fight

by Matt P.

Ninja Grandpa, sadly, didn’t die from being shot right in the crotch. But apparently there is a universality to being hit there that transcends species and perhaps even mortality, and his eyes widened in a startled agony as his flesh ripped and hiss and he stumbled back. Too bright blood splattered to the tile and he began to howl in agony and rage.

Walter didn’t let him. He fired the breaching shotgun again, and explored the universality of knee-caps among species and mortality status. And as the rage began to grow in the other…being’s…eyes he charged. He let the carbine swing back down and threw a quick, powerful round-house that lead with the hilt of the iron knife. It impacted with a meaty thunk on the side of the man’s face and sent him sprawling. His cheek, where the iron had clearly broken the bone there, puckered and hiss like it was being pressed with an iron.

Walter never stopped for quips or one-liners, because of the healing he had seen the others do. And he figured that if anything this guy would have more of it. He lunged in, both knives angled down for fatal blows to the heart and throat. He was a hair’s breadth away when Ninja Grandpa managed to pull himself together enough to roll away and only take one of the knives in the bicep with a hissing screech of agony once more, as Walter’s knees hit the floor with a thunk.

“Damn you!” The other man cursed as he rolled unsteadily to his feet. Walter gave a grin as he came up from his knees. Maybe he was feeling a little bit cocky, or maybe he just wanted to show off (which was not different from feeling cocky, really), but Walter paused to look at him. He opened his mouth to say something, and even though it clearly hurt him more than he could have imagined Ninja Grandpa lunged at him with a blur of mad speed and brought his stone-like fist into Walter’s jaw.

Walter couldn’t remember anything between seeing that fist about four millimeters from his jaw, and then being on the ground staring at the ceiling. He assumed he must have at least gone ass over tea-kettle, if not done a couple of wicked flips along the way, but he couldn’t remember them at all. And his jaw hurt more than he could ever remember it hurting, including that one time he had been in a fistfight with a Samoan on a Hawaiian army base. “Christ…” He murmured, if only to find out whether or not his jaw was still working right or if it had been broken. He pulled himself up to his knees, expecting a hammer blow to come and kill him while he was working on banishing the dancing quicksilver spots from his vision.

But looking over he found Ninja Grandpa in much the same position, gasping and working his way up. Apparently the pain of the blows, and whatever expenditure it took to heal him and overcome it to slug the bejezus out of Walter had also taken its toll on him. He looked even more wan than normal, although the boiling rage in his eyes had only grown with the pain in his body. But despite the increased paleness he looked…more normal somehow. Less intimidating, without an aura of power or menace that Walter had barely even realized he normally felt.

With a grunt Walter stumbled to his feet and braced himself on a chair. He started to say something, to focus himself through sarcasm or start to reach for one of the knives that had clattered out of his hands (he supposed), before he looked around again. Not all of the darkness was from his vision. A line of creeping, rolling darkness had started from the windows, which now only showed a black as complete as the moonless night outside. It moved across the floor and toward him, and when it reached him it didn’t just cover the floor. No, that would have been too normal. When it reached him the darkness started to pool about his ankles, thickened strands lapping across the tops of his shoes.

“Your fight is over, boy.” A deep basso voice called from those growing shadows, and Walter felt fear grip his heart like the icy hand of the reaper itself.