9.3 Fracas

by Matt P.

Siobhan had just long enough to think that she was dead before she realized that she was being violently jerked to the left. She yelped as she hit the ground, managing to roll back to her feet despite the dress as she looked back. Tania had her arm out and had apparently done something that sent her sprawling.

“I tried.” Tania said almost conversationally as she looked at the men facing her. “I want it noted, for the record, that I did try.” A moment later she was not conversational at all, moving toward the six men almost faster than Siobhan could keep track of.

She hit the man in the center like a runaway train, laying him out with a fist to the jaw that filled the gym with a sickening crack that Siobhan was sure wasn’t healthy. Without stopping she grabbed the rifle that he had in his hand and turned. Rather than shooting it she simply turned and flung it at one of the other men with guns. It thwacked him right between the eyes and he fell down to the ground unconscious.

“But this is why we can’t have nice things.” She proclaimed as she turned to the one remaining man with a gun. She started walking toward him slowly this time, with a leonine and predatory grace. She almost casually reached in to her jacket and pulled out a slender knife. She let her arm drop down to her side as she walked, the blade glinting in the uncertain light of the dance hall and taking on a menacing air. A more menacing air, Siobhan found herself thinking absurdly, as she was forced to admit that brandishing a naked knife would be menacing no matter the circumstances—unless there was waiting cake.

The other man started to say something and raise his pistol at the same time. One of them might have been a good instinct, but the other was definitely terrible. Before he could do anything with the rising weapon Tania’s arm flashed and the knife flew from it in a blur. Siobhan turned away quickly so that she didn’t see what happened when it landed.

That might have been what saved her life, or at least her well-being and non-kidnapness. One of the three remaining men, one of the ones with knives or small swords, had come up on her. She stared wide-eyed at him for a moment as he came close, shocked that Tania wasn’t just handily slaughtering everyone. He seemed fairly surprised that he had been spotted as well, and it caused him to pause in the act. After a moment of consideration he reached out with the knife as if to poke at her, as if unsure he should do it—she got the feeling that he had been given orders to deal with the students, but not her. And it mad her wonder, in the shocked moment, why that was.

Before her shock and brain-locked curiosity could get her stabbed, something latched on to the attacker like a particularly enthusiastic ferret. After a blink she realized it was Antigone, wrapping her arms around the attacker in a desperate attempt to keep him from poking her with the knife. “Hurry?” Antigone said in a little bit of a panic, her voice strained.

Siobhan didn’t wait for the world’s easiest escape attempt, instead quickly moving forward. One hand moved to grab the knife hand by the wrist; her other hand lashed out and impacted the side of the man’s neck. It turned out that faerie assassins still have a nerve there in the neck, and a blow to the brachial plexus origin will stun. She followed it up by bringing her knee deeply, deeply in to his crotch. This resulted in him dropping down to his knees, and so she punched him in the nose and he fell back to the ground unconscious.

She turned quickly, the blood pounding in her ears as she looked around to see what else was coming. All she found was Tania standing there waiting, almost bored looking.

“Finally.” She said, with a little roll of her eyes. “You didn’t have to take so long, it was just one man.”

Siobhan studiously avoided looking behind her.