“We aren’t going anywhere with you.” Maggy retorted defiantly.
“Not at all.” Kaya added as she adjusted her glasses. “On the contrary, we will put an end to your invasion, right here and now.”
“Stop you guys! This is crazy. There’s four of us and eleven of them. I’m the only one here with some form of combat training. How do we hope to win?”
“For someone named Hope, you have very little faith you know.” Kaya quipped.
Hope opened his mouth to talk but said nothing.
“Besides, you’ve held them off all by yourself, haven’t you?” Clieo said, smiling at Hope.
“What’s more, Kaya was an SCI, aboard Spectral 7. I know they receive some combat training. I and Clieo also took martial arts classes in school. You’re not alone in this.” Maggy added.
Hope couldn’t help but smile.
“You three are ridiculous.”
“You love birds are the ridiculous ones… dragging us into this mess.” Maggy said with the hint of a smile. “So, soldier. What’s the plan?”
Both Maggy and Kaya had slipped into Hope’s shield. They watched as Baxter stepped forward and placed his hand on the shield. There was a green spark and suddenly Baxter was flung a few feet back by an unseen force.
“We could just stay put until help arrives.” Clieo suggested.
“That probably won’t work.” Kaya chimed in. “Hope’s shield is a repulsion type shield. That’s good. It means it’s got some offensive capability against anyone trying to break through like we just saw. Judging by the hexagonal panels that make up his force field, it’s probably a deflection type shield as well.”
“You’re saying this thing can redirect attacks?” Maggy asked.
“It’s just a theory, but I believe it can. Probably energy based attacks like plasma or concussion. I doubt it’ll deflect a missile. What’s more important is what we already know about our powers and how they work. When the commander was talking to Sergei, he asked him to visualize. Our powers and abilities are probably controlled by our thoughts… by our mind. If they are attacked, it is safe to say our mind will be indirectly attacked.”
“So… you are saying this shield is only as strong as my mind allows it to be.” Hope suggested.
“Yes. I’m also saying once they start shooting, you’ll have to mentally resist the force as much as the shield. If you buckle, the shield does.”
Hope took in a deep breath and looked at the eleven intruders. They had all taken up positions and had their concussion rifles trained on the shield.
“Alright. Let’s start with what we know. I’ve got this shielding power, and Clieo can heal. This is the second time she’s healed me.”
Hope looked at Clieo and smiled.
“Thanks, by the way.”
“Anytime!” Clieo smiled back.
“Guys!!” Maggy and Kaya yelled at the same time.
“Oh… right. What are your powers?” Hope asked.
“Well… we honestly haven’t figured out what we can do. I know my temperature can get really high though.” Kaya offered.
The shield was rocked by a concussive blast, shot at them.
“They’ve started their offensive. We’ll have a better chance of defeating them if we can at least disable their guns. Kaya, from what you’ve said, it seems you’ve got some form of heat radiation. Can you project that heat into their guns?” Hope asked.
“I’ll try.” Kaya said as she rolled out of the shield and made a bee line for the nearest cover. One by one, she took in the positions of all eleven intruders and tried to focus her thoughts on their weapons. The shield was being hit by a barrage of concussive blasts, and she could tell Hope was now struggling to maintain its strength and form.
C’mon! C’mon! Do something.
She focused on Baxter’s gun, taking in every detail of its form, its carved edges, its trigger and its muzzle. The gun’s black painted metal body began to peel slowly. Baxter hadn’t noticed yet. As he shot more blasts at Hope, he barked orders instructing his comrades not to open fire on Kaya and to seize fire once the shield was compromised. Soon the metal began to corrode and turn a brownish red before a piece crumpled in and fell off. The gun stopped shooting. Baxter looked at the gun and then turned his visor gaze towards Kaya. Kaya wasn’t intimidated. One by one, she focused in on the other intruders and soon their guns began to disintegrate as well.
The barrage of concussive blasts stopped.
“Weapons disabled!” Kaya yelled as Hope brought his shield down.
“What next, Hope?” Maggy asked as the eleven intruders surrounded them and began slowly closing in.
“Guys, this is futile.” Baxter said as he closed in on Kaya. “Come in peacefully. Like I said earlier, our mission is to retrieve the four of you, alive.”
“Hope?” Maggy asked angrily.
“Do you have some other plan?”
Hope nodded. He turned to Clieo.
“I’ll try to set up the dome, around you. Your task is to heal us if we are mortally wounded. Kaya, Maggy, I hope your martial arts classes come in handy. We’ll have to fight our way through this. Ready everyone?”