The Betrayal Chapter 43 snippet

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Biting her lip to keep from crying out in pain, Kate climbed over the machinery. With a grunt she dropped down onto her feet and then slid down to the decking. This was perfect, she told herself, Benton couldn’t see her, and it would allow for her body to heal!

“If you had listened to me,” Brown said with a sigh. “You wouldn’t be in this spot.”

“Shut up,” Kate hissed. “What did you expect me to do, get blown up with a grenade? Done that once already, don’t care to do it again!”

“Maybe if you had thought out a better plan…”

“You know,” Kate groaned. “For someone who is three hundred plus years old, you certainly are annoying!”

“I’m trying to teach you something!” Brown said.

“Maybe you should let me fight the battles,” Kate said with a sardonic chuckle. “And you worry about teaching.”

“I think I’m going to have to worry about both if you’re to survive, I’m afraid,” Brown said.

“I’ve lived for twenty-five years,” Kate said. “Without your help. Why would I need to change now?”

“Because things were never this hard on you before,”

Stunned into silence by the admission, she just felt an eyebrow rise in contemplation. The other woman had a point, she told herself, because nothing had been this rough until now! As bad as things were on Necko, they never quite reached the level of this kind of desperate fight. Shaking her head, she had to give the other woman credit for stating the obvious at least.

Let’s see what Benton is up to, she though as she activated the stolen TAC system again.

“Hello, Graham,” she whispered into the throat mike.

“Bitch,” Benton’s response was instantaneous.

“Now, now, Graham,” she said in a patronizing tone. “That’s not the way to great an old friend now, is it?”

“You’re not my friend,” he countered. “You’re just a lousy slave.”

“Who’s managed to kill just about all of your hand-picked team,” Kate said with a soft chuckle, making sure not to make her ribs hurt. “So I must be doing something right.”

“You’re not getting off this refinery alive,”

“Now, Graham,” she said. “Why don’t we just cut the bull**** out and talk to each other straight, okay?”

The silence on the other end was deafening.

“You want me dead,” she said simply. “And I want you dead, so here’s the deal: how about we have ourselves a little bit of a game.”

“What kind of game?”

“A most dangerous game,” Kate said. “Have you ever read ancient literature, Graham?”

“Get to the point, Almir,”

“There was a short story by Richard Connell,” She said. “And it was titled ‘A Most Dangerous Game’ in which a hunter is hunted by another man. I propose the same deal here. Since we both want the other dead, lets get down to business. You kill me, you win, I kill you, and I win. Simple, to the point, and deals with what we both want. You up for a rematch?”

“If it allows me to kill you, yes,”

“Then I tell you what, sweetie,” Kate said in a spiteful tone. “Then I suggest you start hunting, because I’m after you. Enjoy what’s left of your life, Benton.”

Clicking the TAC net off, Kate leaned her head back against the machinery with a sigh. The itching in her chest had become less pronounced, meaning the tiny machines were nearing the end of their work. It’s just another wonderful example of being more machine then man, she told herself with a rueful sigh.

They had been originally placed in her body to make up for the loss of bone marrow when she lost her biological arms and legs, but that wasn’t all they did now. Built to create synthetic red blood cells, they had mutation shortly after into items even more useful.
Tirelessly working, they now would repair damage to her body too, provided it didn’t overload their capacity to deal with it.

And they make me a hoot at parties, she thought with a snort. I can’t get drunk or get caffeine high. Makes me the best person at a bar…the only one that can’t fall onto the floor drunk!

“You really need to learn some patience, little one,”

Kate swore under her breath as she shook her head at Brown. Did the woman ever take a break on bothering her? It wasn’t like being with someone like herself, Kate scoffed, but more like having a overbearing parent who couldn’t stay out of your hair. With a groan, she started to realize what the people who had grown up with their parents meant when they complained about it.

“Yes, Mother,” Kate whispered, hoping to keep it from being heard.

“I told you,” Brown said. “I’m not your mother, but your sister.”

“Yeah I forgot,” Kate muttered. “I have a three hundred year old sister.”

“Something along those lines.”
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