Today’s Andrews Ranch

I swear I didn’t know that the 9572 could do this until today’s writing session….


“Warning,” a mechanical voice that sounded vaguely like Will’s droned, 9572-MAIN flashing to identify it as the speaker. “Incoming skimmer arming up.”

“We’ve got to get shielded!” Will snapped. “Dad’s coming in shooting. Di, we’ve got to get out of this skimmer, now! Francis, Sarah, get shields up fast!”

The 9572 glided forward, Will resting his hand on it as it flew through the cabin. Diana scurried to catch up.

“My hand too?” she asked Will as the skimmer door opened.


The skin erupted and a claw closed around her wrist as she slammed her hand down on the 9572’s skin. She didn’t have time to yell before the 9572 shot forward, yanking her off of her feet.

“Grab it!” Will bellowed at her. “Clamps!”

She struggled to wrap herself around the 9572 like she saw Will doing, gasping as it sped out of the skimmer. Clamps cranked down around her arms and the one leg she’d managed to snake around the 9572 but her other leg whipped free as the war machine dodged a shot from Anne’s Third Force team. Diana managed to wrestle her leg awkwardly onto the 9572. As it made contact, more clamps wrapped around the leg. She was grateful for the support as the war machine shot straight up, wobbling as her body strained against the fastenings.

“Flatten yourself!” Will yelled. “You’re throwing the balance off!”

“I’m trying!” she yelled back.

Diana managed to brush her midriff against the 9572. Yet another clamp wrapped around her torso and snugged it close to the war machine. The irregular flight steadied, and the machine arched into a tight parabola. Diana struggled for breath against the gravitational pull as a blast whipped past them. From the skimmer. From Parker Landreth’s skimmer.

Will growled something she couldn’t hear. The 9572 trembled under them.

Something detonated over Parker Landreth’s skimmer.

“Will! You didn’t!” she screamed.

“Disable only!”

She lost sight of Parker’s skimmer as the 9572 snaked around.

Breathe in. Breathe out. She fought to keep her breathing steady against the pull of gravity, and wondered just how often Will had done something like this in the PAZ. I’m glad I didn’t know about this capacity.

And then their flight slowed.

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