Tuesday, November 27, 2018

To Serve Man? To Serve at Trial.

[WP] There’s a race of beings that eat humans in the same way that we eat other animals. One of their cookbooks has fallen into the hands of a human.

The session was held in conference hall #3 which held an unobstructed view of the myriad stars that twinkled in the void. The station orbited a binary sun with soft orange rays that meshed against the station's deflection screens. It was a small crowd that had gathered in the main conference room. There were Zetan grays with large black eyes and skin that was bone white, light green, or soft gray that either sat upon the offered benches or worked the consoles on the left bank of computers. Attending the evenly spaced pillars and on the catwalks above was a combination of Nrdanbjorn soldiers, their figures broad, their bodies covered in black or dark brown fur. Each soldier sported a muzzled face with a set of sharp teeth in his jaws. That is where the power of the Pleiadians came from, their shock troopers were the Nordanbjorns.
The first to be escorted into the courtroom was the Kanamit defendant. The Kanamit had to duck to enter the room. He stood 2 meters tall with a pronounced cranium, as two loathes of bread resting atop a Human face. His pronounced brow was furrow and the gray in his eyes deepened until they looked nearly black. His lips were held in a deep frown that went all the way to the tuft of blonde hair on his chin as he was marched before the audience.
Sitting in judgment of the tall sophont were three Pleiadians dressed in their flowing silken finery. Their silvery tresses kept long, flowing down the back of their necks and over their shoulders in braids of thin metal. The two male Pleiadians sat on either side of the Lady Kapatria, the voice of justice of the region. It was her bright lavender eyes that gazed upon the Kanamit with a combination of disappointment and pity. When she spoke, it was as if a silver bell was rung. Eyes turned to her.
"Kiel of the Kanamits, your ship has been seized and you are brought up on charges in relation to the kidnapping, smuggling, and consumption of sentient beings. Do you have anything to say for yourself?" She asked, her head held high as she studied the tilt of the Kanamit's head. Despite lips, and by her reports, a tongue, the Kanamit chose to speak in telepathic waves. His voice crackled from a nearby talkbox for that of a combination of posterity and for the benefits of her guards. Several races may have had telepathic talent, but not the Nordanbjorns who eyed the prisoner with hands gripping their blaster rifles.
"I was unaware the Protectorate took interest in matters beyond their sector," The Kanamit, Dolph was his name, said with a touch of annoyance in his telepathic voice. She sensed the annoyance within the alien attempting to disguise the fear.
"The Protectorate has the highest regard for all sentient life, Kanamite. We have a high regard for you and your kind, though you have been warned against trafficking and consumption of sentient life," She leaned back in her chair that hovered above the flat metal dais. If her counterparts spoke, they spoke only through the mind and guarded their thoughts well enough that the other telepaths could not listen in.
The Kanamite tilted his head and said, "What proof do you have that any of our government has engaged in sentient consumption?" Even though the filter of an electronic talkbox, there was a touch of arrogance. An air of challenge to the trio of blonde haired sophonts that stood in judgment of him. She turned her head towards the male on her right, who in turn keyed several buttons built on the console of his chair.
From a door to the left he entered, escorted by two Nordanbjorn soldiers. His step faltered as he looked upon the Kanamite who stood in the center. It required a soft nudge and nod from the guards behind him to give him the sort of courage he needed to stand before the dais and say, "I hope you live to regret the day you left this behind for us to find," He gestured at the tome held in the Nordanbjorn on the man's left. The words, written in the native tongue of the Kanamite, was translated by the man, who said:
"My name is Michael Chambers, I am a cryptographer for my government on Earth, which you call Terra. I submit this as exhibit A for the Galactic Union's case against the Kanamite people. This book, known as 'To Serve Man,' is a cookbook."

Monday, November 19, 2018

The Queen's Children

[WP] Every year the villagers would send any unwanted children to the huge black dragon as offerings. Being a good mom the dragon decided to take care of them instead of eating them.

On the road to Tempest, Norma Battlehorn sat with her pointed chin resting against her right hand while a set of cards were in her left. She was playing poker with a casual air that would have angered a true gambler. It was a copper ante game, the stuff of children, her companion did not mind. What was of greater interest to Lars of North was the road behind him lead to the city of Tempest: Rich, imperious city-state, a city of finery and coins. The road leading to the streets of gold bustled with marchers dressed in black.
"Another war?" Lars asked as he looked over his shoulder.
"No thanks, I made enough from forge work that I can holiday for a while," The Dwarven woman said. She raised the stake by a silver coin and called for another drink, "Besides, those fellows are a touch to exclusive, they don't even want Dwarven smithing." Norma answered with a deep grumble. She didn't need the money, but the thought that there were factions uninterested in Dwarven smithing was... alien to her. As soon as her glass of honey mead arrived, she downed it in a gulp.
Lars asked: "What's their story, then?"
"What do you see?" Norma stared forward when she asked. The cards in her hand, which were impressive cards, was furthest from her mind, they were at a near angle exposing their contents to him. Yet, he first looked into her eyes, and then over his shoulder to the marching force. The army on the road marched in a double-column fashion. Their frames were tall and thick, Human frames. Clad in chainmail that was black as an old furnace with dark green trim. Their pauldrons and greaves made the same black steel as their enclosed helms. Their heavy infantry was regimented with halberds and shortswords. A very professional look to them. Walking the flanks between the columns were standard bearers who colors were a soft gray with a figure of a black dragon's head in profile with a single green eye. Lars relayed what he saw in slow, measured words, something about the legion marching to war filled him with a sense of dread.
"You ever heard of Hicot-by-Hill?" Norma asked.
"That's a town I take it? Never heard of it." Lars called for his drink. His throat felt dry from the act of watching the fearsome parade."I had some cousins who would ride down there to trade. Mostly sell cookware or new plow shears, a little bit of repair work. The pay was good, but my cousin, you remember him, Lars? His name was Barabus?"
"Oh yeah, we still cannot go back to that gambling hall after he got drunk and started dancing on the table. So, thank your cousin, by the way." Lars grumbled. He knew that Norma was annoyed by the display to, but what could she do? Family was family, and she waved off Lars' sarcasm, "The point is. He stopped working there because he learned what those mother's and fathers did to their unwanted children. You see, Hicot-by-Hill bordered a series of hills near a swamp. One of the caves in the swamp was a terrible black dragon. A female, nasty one from what I heard. She could spit acid that melted steel and ate flesh. She could breathe smoke that poisoned whole valleys. They offered their unwanted young, maybe to appease her, maybe to curry favor. I'm not sure if they knew what a dragon liked or disliked to eat, but they figured the dragoness would appreciate the gesture."
"So, what did she do? Barabus watch her... eat?" Lars asked, his eyes were wide, though he had seen action as an adventurer, he had never heard something so vile as parents actively feeding their young. He had heard of abandonment. He knew that plenty, much to his hardbitten disappointment. "No, no... but I looked into it after he told me what he learned and I looked into it myself. She takes the children she receives... she gathered them together... and then she raised them. Raised them as her own. From what I learned from the hermits who also dwelled in the swamps, she had no eggs and instead adopted her offerings as children."
"Oh? Well, that sounds like a very happy ending..." Lars trailed off.
"Not quite, villagers had been doing it for generations. You want to know what happened to those kids?" Norma asked, after taking another drink. She nodded her head towards the company of black leather-clad archers with arrows of black ash and red feathers, "That's her legion. All of her children became her soldiers. She's a force to reckon around here, her will enforced by her adopted children."
Lars drew his breath. He had recalled the stories that cropped up in the Hundred Hills region. The Dragonqueen and her so-called Queen's Children. To see them in their terrible measure was something else. They moved with singular purpose to the west, to the City of Tempest. The Queen must have been bored with a petty kingdom in the center."Whatever happened to that village?" Lars asked, "Hicot-by-Hill?"
"When she had enough of her children to make her first army, she allowed them to take their revenge on the parents who abandoned them. Hicot is now an armed camp built on bones." Norma laid down her cards and said, "By the way. Aces and 8's. I win the hand."
"What do you think we should do?" Lars' mind was furthest of his losses. He pushed them towards Norma. His eyes were elsewhere. "As I said, I made plenty of money, and they aren't looking for smith work. I figure I could holiday here for a bit, then make my way south. You going to travel with me?"
Lars nodded and turned back to her, "Yeah, sure. South sounds good."

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

What Toys Do in the Dark

[WP] Angered by the monsters tormenting the child in his care, a worn and tattered teddy bear ventures into the closet to face them.

The dim glow of a nightlife cast long shadows in the bedroom, innocent toys, household objects became terrible monsters under visual manipulation. The bed was tucked into the corner, the blankets were pulled aside, and the crisp white pillows had fallen to the floor. It was a perfect time, the fiend spot, to skitter from the deep closet to under the bed. Its prey might not be back that evening, not when the young girl caught a look of those red eyes with their black slits narrowed brows, but she would be forced to go back by her elders, and it would be waiting. Or it would have been, if not for Barnabus.
With all mortal eyes away, Barnabus stood tall and broad. His fur was brown with a touch of white from age, there were small knots in his coat, and pieces of string that hung off his paw. He could have used better stuffing to become plumped his foot shifted with the discomfort of a small hole that he would have liked sewn up, but at that moment he was still the same old bear. The same old bear with an ax to grind against monsters. His glassy black eyes looked down on the chitinous fiend as two plastic knights held him down. Like the bear, the knights had grown to size. As soon as the fiend broke out from the closet they were upon him, their cold, gloved hands enmeshed in the shadowy flesh as they held it down.
"I thought I told you and your friends you were not allowed to be in here," Barnabus drew a line along his muzzle with a plush paw, "Actually, I don't think. I know I told you."
The fiend struggled against in the grasp of the knights. It hissed, "Fool! You won't stay her bear forever! You'll be tossed aside, put into the attic, and we are always watching," There was a series of snapping sounds as the fiend's head turned a full half-circle so that its compound eyes which were black with touches of red could stare daggers into the bear, "It must break your heart. Knowing the girl will get rid of her protector."
"It will, but not tonight, and not for you." Barnabus stepped in close and said, "Give my regards to your friends below. Tell them Barnabus is still working the beat, and anyone who comes to this closet is going to get the same treatment." The Knights pulled the demon taut, their grip was steadfast as the demon wiggled and jerked in place to escape not only their grasp but the massive foot that came crashing down on the demon's mandibles. The first blow crushed the jaws and caused gray ichor to leak out one of the fiend's broken eyes. The second one turned the fiend into slime and ash.
The room was quiet again. When the father came in the next day to do a routine monster check, he found the closet door open and commented on how the little girl left her toys out. He saw little out of place but mentioned the bear would need to be cleaned. Somehow a spot of tar got on its foot.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Waffle House in the Fallen Earth

[WP] Radiation scorches the land. Mutants and raiders are out, killing people by the dozens. But you still do your job at the Waffle House, serving food to any who come to you. Describe a typical day at work

A red wind was out of the desert and leaving a trail of sand and dust that stretched from the parking lot and all the way to Iron City by Medger's reckoning. Sand could get into the dining area if someone held the door long enough, which meant that anytime a person came to the door to slip in they were yelled at by the patrons. It was better to say something then end up with a touch of soil in your hash browns. Medger cupped his chin with his right hand. He had a damp rag in his left hand that he lifted to touch his brow. It seemed like a good time to take a nap when the high pitched roar of a roadster tore down the highway. Medger tilted his head and followed the red blur as it screamed past the building. It was a few yards down the haphazard highway when it banked hard enough that the tire's protest was heard clear from Medger's spot, maybe they even heard it Iron City.
The red blur raced back to the diner, pulled in fast, and nearly grazed a parked black-and-white sedan. Medger never moved. He stood at his spot on the counter, even as he saw a short figure with a lean build jump out the car, stamp over to the door, and take both chrome handles to pull doors open at the same time. The figure turned out to be a young woman with steely green eyes, soot-stained tan cheeks, and a mouth held in a hard grimace. She had not even taken three steps when she jerked the pistol from the pocket of her leather jacket.
"If you need directions you can ask. I'm happy to oblige." He said. "I know where I'm going, pops. Just need a few supplies and all the hard currency you got." She said. Medger's lips wilted into a brief frown in response to her verbal jab. He had seen plenty in his years. He was born in a time after the fires of the Faction Wars and was the son of business owners and cooks. He learned from his parents the trade he carried on today. Still, he never thought himself old. He blinked twice as she continued to menace him with a gun, "Well?" She asked.
"Lady, you either are very new to this area, or you are the biggest dummy to survive this long." He said and tilted his head to the left. With the only watering hole and eatery that worked the Route, Medger enjoyed a certain level of prestige. A particular code that had developed: One could always find good hash browns from his kitchen, his Waffle House was neutral grounds, and finally, the rule that Medger quite enjoyed: You don't rob the Waffle House.
To the left of her, she could see the Mutants. The Pgimen with their pink-shaded bodies and snouted noses glaring and aiming shotguns at her. She could see Mutant Humans, such as Three-Eyed Joe, whose third eye had already begun to draw energy to use as part of his firebolt attack. Cecil of Prickly Point had appreciated being allowed to gulp cups of water, he was a man-cactus who stood taller than most normal Men and covered in black, fine-pointed needles. They grew longer when he was mad, as he glared at the young woman they were as long as spikes.
The right offered no reprieve. The Pure Strains sat on that side of the room. Marshall Morris already had his hand on the butt of a revolver. Two members of Riley's Rangers muttered as they gripped their rifles. A soft metallic sound could be heard as a bounty hunter out of Dustbowl spun the cylinder of his revolver with his brown hand and snapped it closed. All eyes, mutant and pure alike, were on her and Medger.
Medger said, after a palpable pause to let her take it in, "Any chance you can walk out of here and drive away?" Medger asked. He offered the friendliest smile he had. He was upset that she had pointed the weapon at him, even if he understood how tough it was out there. To see her dark brown lips curl into a plaintive frown, the tears that welled in her eyes, Medger sighed and said. "Why do you have to get to Iron City?"
"I don't have to get there. I don't have anyone waiting, I mean. I just have to get away from where I come from. I was being held by the Chainmen when I stole their leader's roadster and drove out of there. I found the gun in the glove compartment, I'm not even sure if it's loaded." She lifted the gun in hand. Tears flowed freely as she knew she was not only under scrutiny, she was under all sorts of weapons. She laid the pistol on the table and pushed it towards Medger to take.
"Well, you might be surprised how many times I get involved in this sort of incident." He said.
"Is this typical?" She asked and peaked up, she was as vulnerable as she could be. Her weapon was in his hands and could only feel relief as the assembled room backed down.
"More like uncommon," Medger said, "For now, why don't you follow me to the back. I've got a cot you can lie on. We can talk more about your troubles."
He came around the counter and put his arm around her shoulder. It had fallen under the usual pattern he had seen when it was the lost soul seeking freedom from their woes. Even the part where, after all that happened, she began to sob into his shoulder.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

That Time Three of Us Got Together with Septimus to Save the World

[WP] A Vampire Hunter, a Dragon Slayer, a Witch Inquisitor, and a Demon Excorcist must work together to kill a Vampire Dragon possessed by a Demon controlled by a powerful coven of Witches. They all absolutely hate each other.

Stormy gray skies had writhed and molded until they were black as sin with crackling tongues of lightning that licked the earth in the distance. No chance for a fire to burn, less the blaze was equally as wicked. The flames burned well below when Marcus slid the telescope closed, "It looks like the ceremony is underway."

"You know what, bitch? I'm glad I dumped you. And your clothes? I already sold them to a homeless person." Lona sneered at Jezebel sheets of rain fell to earth. It may have been a killing chill to mortal men, but it was a wasted effort to contain the fire that burned in the eyes of Lona. Marcus had seen that same hatred applied to Lona's favorite prey: witches, warlocks, all those who used arcane energy to spite the Divines. He had his distaste for the Inquisitor clad in scarlet and black armor. He also had an equal dislike for the Huntress who wore black and silver.
The latter, Jezebel, huffed and said, "All those times I said I was too busy for date night? I lied, I just didn't want to go home and hear you killing another witch. It was always the same story: Oooo, Jezebel, I tracked this witch down! She tried to use her spells, but my faith in the Divines kept me oh so protected. I used my whip or my knife to kill her. At least the stories I told had some adventure to them!" Jezebel turned on Marcus and said,
"What did you say?" She snapped at Marcus.

"Oh, I'm sorry, go ahead and have it out. I mean, it's just an attempt by the Blackwald Coven to bring darkness upon the Land and everything we hold dear, but a man knows the real crucial conflict when he sees 'em. Take your time. I'm sure the world can wait." "You know, it was because of that attitude Marcus that I divorced your ass for Lona," Jezebel said.
Marcus growled under his breath. What a time for heroes to come together? A leather-clad Vampire Huntress, the best with knife or stake. The most powerful of the Inquisitors, who knew every protection and count spell to their hellish magic. While not one to boast of his abilities, the red-haired Marcus was as strong as ten men. With some solid ground to hurl himself from, he could easily leap into the air onto any beasts back. That left the last of their party, the most powerful caster he knew. The High Prelate, Septimus Proudie. He had his arms crossed over his chest as he stared down the path towards village they had left behind.

"You ready, Septimus?" Marcus asked. The women continued to exchange glares. He wanted to depend on the Prelate and his fellow male to be the stabilizing force in the party. Perhaps he hoped for too much? It was an ill omen that the Prelate narrowed his eyes and jerked his head towards Marcus, "Oh? Now you want to call me by my title. You want to act like you value a damn thing I've got to say." Septimus' teeth ground his teeth between words.
"What's wrong now, nerd?" Lona asked.
"To hell with you too, Inquisitor!" Septimus shouted over the storm, "You want to act your so big and bad, I remember when Jezebel dumped your ass. You were sobbing in the confessional for a week. All three of you have turned and dropped trousers to me for months, showing me your asses. I guess you thought I was going to turn the other damn cheek."
"I was just funning with you," Jezebel threw up her defense. Her voice tapered off. She found herself more concerned with keeping damp hair out of her eyes than meeting Septimus' gaze. "Have to always take it personally."

"What do you have to say, 'Sir' Marcus? You want to keep bragging how you had more dates than I have? That I'd spend my life with nose in a book? Sorry, I didn't get out there and brain people with wooden swords, too busy learning how to banish demons from the world-"
Another crackle of lightning tore through the sky and drove itself into the ground not far from where the group stood. A bright blue flame emerged from the point of impact. It served a reminder that strong magic was in the air. In the valley below, the terrible wyrm named Piosenna the Beast would rise to drink her fill of blood and slaughter. Marcus turned at the four of them and said, "Alright. Fine... we don't like each other. Jezebel, you broke my heart and took half of the assets when you divorced me to date Lona. Lona, it's apparent that you and Jezebel didn't get along during your time together, and I think we can all say... sorry Septimus for... showing our asses... that was a very longwinded thing you said."
A great cacophonous roar tore through the valley. Marcus needed no other prompting to get to the point, "The thing is! We need each other now. So, let's spend a little time with those we hate to save the world. Then we can hash out our problems in a group setting, alright?" He looked between the three of them. He received a nod from his ex-wife, a shrug from his ex-wife's ex-girlfriend, and a frown from the nerd he knew whom he needed to work alongside. Marcus took that as the best he was going to get.

"Alright, team, let's go down there and do what we do best." He turned away from them. Mud suckled his boots as he stomped through the newly formed sludge towards the path that would take him to the ceremony site. He smiled a little as he heard the other boots trudge after him.

Monday, November 5, 2018

The Vampire's Stylist

[WP] You are a fresh graduate from fashion school. Broke and out of work, you receive a surprisingly ornate letter inviting you for a job opportunity as a fashion consultant. Turns out, you were invited by a Vampire and you are currently in his/her mansion and you are undergoing a job interview.

The ornate hall was as vast as Brenda's dorm with room to spare. The walls paneled wood in rich reds with portraits of men in brilliant scarlet riding coats and ladies in ballgowns in front of gardens. Down the hall and on the left was a rectangular mirror that started at the top of her head and ended straight in the floor in a gilt brass frame. She would have preferred the elderly man on her left facing her to smile more, or at least not stand so stiff. On her left, she looked through the double doors that opened into a side parlor where she spied several men in sports coats and turtlenecks lounging about when their eyes met her shoulders visibly shuddered from a sharp, cold prod of alarm as if she was being sized up for the slaughter by the men in the room. She turned back to the older party and said,
"What's the deal with those guys?"
"Those gentlemen are members of Miss Dammert's security team. The Madam has many concerns when it comes to her safety. If you'd please?" He bowed his head forward his right hand pressed against his flat torso to compliment his left hand which reached out and gestured to the hall. She nodded and said, "I'm ready when you are, Mister..."
"Standish, Madam. You may call me Standish, thank-you."
He turned on his heel and started down the hall with his head held high and chin up. She followed him, hanging close to his right side. Her eyes wandered over paraphernalia on either side of her. Gold and brass fixtures and frames, overstuffed chairs that looked so soft to touch or sit on. She took it all in and knew any work she could get at Miss Priscilla Dammert's house would set her up very well. All she had to do, she thought, was a good job, and avoid the petty fears that weighed on her. At the end of the hall, Standish opened one of the double doors and bowed to her, "Miss Dammert, may I present a Miss Brenda Gardner, the stylist."
The sitting room did not disappoint in the continuation of opulence carried over from the hall. The polished cork floor was obscured by a great square rug that was as wide a football field and depicted a medieval castle with overcast clouds hovering above it. The walls were the same paneled wood with landscape portraits on every other panel. A stone hearth fireplace crackled with fire and was fed by several thick logs, with another set of additional fuel stacked neatly within the stone-laden pit. Near the fireplace was an oxblood fainting couch and upon the sofa reclined a woman buxom woman with burgundy curls, pale skin, and soft pink rouge on her cheeks. She was turned towards Brenda with one arm over her torso, the other hung from off the couch. It was as if she had awoken from a long nap and regarded Brenda as a woman who was a nuisance even though she was sent for.
Brenda cleared her throat and put her best foot forward, "Miss Dammert. It is very nice to meet you."
"Charmed, my dear. Would you take a refreshment? Some wine, perhaps? Please don't be offended if I do not partake myself. I do not drink... wine." Her voice was husky, her eyes lowered with a dreamy expression. A smirk curled on her lips as if she had told an amusing joke. Brenda said she would love to have some wine. She thanked Standish for the glass of red he put into her hands. She offered a short bow as he placed a chair in front of her. When their eyes met again, a cold sensation jolted her again. She swallowed the sweetened drink, a sudden rush caused her head to sway. She registered that towards the back wall a velvet tarp had covered one of the decorations. She corraled her attention back to her client and said, "Miss Dammert, how may I help you?"
"What do you see, child, when you look at me?" The woman asked.
What did she see? She squinted her eyes and then opened them. She took in the face and found it striking, but not quite pretty by standards of the day. It was a face that reminded her of a wilting actress, yet she saw tiny blemish or sign of age. Her eyes trailed down the front towards the firm neck, and then to the dress. She did note that the ornate brocade and long flowing skirt was something out of yesteryear. She spoke aloud: "That is a beautiful dress, Miss Dammert, but not quite in style at the moment."
"So I've been told, Miss Gardner. Do you have any suggestions? Would you like some more wine?"
Brenda shook her head, she felt she was half-way to be soused. She said at length: "I could recommend some more fashionable dresses, maybe a nice skirt and blouse look. Pantsuits are also a thing. It depends on the kind of statement you wish to project."
"I'm a very powerful woman, Miss Gardner, even though I don't look it. I want to protect the image of a powerful woman."
"Oh? What kind of business is that?" Brenda asked.
Priscilla Dammert turned her head and nodded to Standish. The old gentleman crossed the room towards the far side where the velvet curtain stood. Mrs. Dammert was up surprisingly fast by Brenda's recollection. She had to hand it to the woman, she knew how to move in a ball gown. As Dammert drew close with each step, the piercing cold of fear rocked through her. A soft whisper in her head told her to run, but most of her had fallen into the lovingly languid warmth of the alcohol. With a deal of effort, she turned her head to the curtain as it was withdrawn. She noticed how the image of Standish was there, and she saw her reflection, but something was missing. She turned again to see Dammert stand in what should have been a clear view of the mirror. Her dark eyes looked down upon Brenda. When she spoke, Brenda could see fangs.
"My business is running this city, child. I am the Mistress of Vampires." She closed her toothy maw for a moment and turned her eyes toward the mirror. Despite having ordered it done, Brenda noticed a look of disgust featured on the woman's face. Dammert turned back and said: "I hope you are a good stylist, my dear. You now know too much to simply walk away."

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The Predator on Purge Night.

[EU] You are a Predator who's decided to challenge yourself by only bringing your wrist claws to hunt humans. Only problem is that you've arrived on Purge night and the game is suddenly much more challenging than expected.

"If you follow me, ladies and gentlemen, we have a lovely stage for our show tonight!" Mr. Wexler had both hands up and high over his head as the double doors opened by his guards. He was confident that the show he had planned would get as high marks as it did every year. Blood and champagne, terror and murder, that was his line of work. His great theater with its vaulted ceilings, scarlet walls, and gilt brass trim sported a stainless steel stage where his clients could bid on cattle to slaughter. His guests would file through the wing doors while he and his men made up the center column of stretcher bound victims who pleaded, whimpered, or silently cried themselves at the inevitable. "No tears, please." He'd tell the soon-to-be victims. Not until the blades went in them. He had counted on another show stopper as his victims included the young, the old, the pregnant, and the beautiful. All of his victims poor, or at least poor when compared to the perpetrators in their suits and gowns.
He stopped mid-track, however, after a few steps down the center alley. Blood had already splashed upon his chrome stage. He turned on his head of security to ask if the janitorial staff had a purge party on there own. Didn't they know failing him meant they'd be the next round of entertainment? But he paused as several guards looked up. The droplets of blood fell from the ceiling, a batch of guards suspended by their ankles. Their bodies flayed of skin.

"What the hell, I leave you guys alone for five minutes, and you start screwing around?" Wexler snapped. "That wasn't us, sir. Last report my guys were playing cards." Nulty noticed how their clients murmured and shuffled on their feet as they greeted those who were dead, but not on the client's terms. The hairs on Wexler's neck stiffened at a soft electrical sensation.

The blades pierced the small of the back of the guard who escorted the western wing of clients. A warm river of red ran down his back and formed an outline of a hand covered in sparks. The force that struck him lifted him off his feet as a scream issued from him. "Ahhh!" He cried and fired wildly down the line behind him. The bullets struck several men and women, Wexler's clients, all of that old money splattered in their tuxes and gowns by hot lead. It did not help that several men in the center column saw the man dispatched and thrown across the room. They laid suppressive fire on the crowd.

"Those bastards killed, Kevin!" One guard said as he kept firing. Old men and women held up their hands to halt the slaughter of rich killers, but their pleading eyes, much like the eyes of the victims past, received an answer with bullets. A soft whistle in the air and a man on the eastern wing cried as a thrown blade struck him in the chest. "It's an ambush!" Nulty cried. He joined several of the guards in firing the other half of the rich. Several had scurried back up the causeway into the main lobby, but several had their bellies and chests blown open by fire.
It was during the second firefight that Wexler's eyes raised. He saw what looked at first as an optical illusion, a ripple in the air. As it kept advancing his eyes semi-adjusted until it was evident to him that the illusion was in the shape of a rather large man. The figure's movements were fast, Wexler did not even register that it had thrown something until a warmth touched his cheek. He looked on either side and noticed that Nulty and his other guard grabbed at knife wounds from their throat and chest respectively. Blood pooled out as they sank to their knees.
A third guard rushed forward and asked, "What's goin-" His voice was cut as the figure broke from whatever it had used... a demon with a spell? An alien with technology? All Wexler was sure of was that a tall biped with dark green or black skin with a pale beige stomach had advanced and plunged a set of blades into the third man. It lifted the impaled guard. Gravity took care of the rest as the man sunk closer to the alien, gasping aloud as his innards left a slimy trail on the twin blades.

Tyradis, the Predator, turned its head at Wexler who had taken two steps back. The Human had grabbed one of the two pistols tucked into the belt and yanked a Human female off of the cart his prey had brought several of its kind into. Throughout the night the Predator had seen displays that both infuriated and confused the creature. He had seen these Terrans dishonorably hunt the unarmed, the young, and infirm. He could, in a way, respect those who fought each other for the thrill of direct combat, but most hunted for trophies that they had no right or take. There was no sport to it. He had known of large theaters amongst his kind, but on his world, such places were for honorable combat, and not the slaughter that this species took part in. It's head tilted as it studied the gray-haired male hold his gun against the woman's head. Readouts within his mask showed how the female was with child. No sport, no sport at all. Yet, the male kept her close, he pressed the muzzle against her head as if a threat to the Tyradis. He weighed his options, would his honor suffer too badly if he impaled the pregnant female and skewer them both? He knew he could not take her as a trophy. He hesitated when her hand gripped around the second weapon tucked into the male's pants and pulled the trigger.
A sudden flash erupted, and a sharp noise conflicted with the Human male's scream. Tyradis had to respect the female. She was able to slip out of the grasp of the man she had attacked, as the female moved she managed to draw the blackened barrel weapon from the male's bloodstained pants. Tyradis used the opening created by the attack to slip his blades into the male's stomach. He jerked up, Human flesh and bone sliced so easily. The man's face was a mask of agony and terror as the rending blades cut through his lungs and heart. Tyradis had many skulls to take on this night.
He withdrew the blades and turned his head to face the female. Still armed, did she wish to battle him? He narrowed his eyes through the mask as he turned to meet her. He could see the woman faltered in her resolve, the gun slipped from her hand and clacked to the floor. He turned back to take skulls while she busied freeing the other capture Humans. Tyradis was satisfied. This theater was plentiful in trophies, but he had a long night ahead of him.