Tom sprinted across the lawn toward Stacia’s house and the trampoline they had managed to move next to it. He reached the trampoline, jumped, hit the canvass and bounced up. His trajectory was a little more forward than he had intended, so he ended up slamming into the small roof section overhanging the door to the garage, rather than landing on it. But he scrambled with his feet and fingers and managed to hang on.
He waited, pressed against the shingles, listening the noises Stevie was making from the other side of the house. It wasn’t long before he was treated to a view of the zombies pushing themselves out of the room. He pulled himself to his feet, heard a whirring, clanking noise behind him. Cleaning his neck over his shoulder, he saw a flying robot heading his way. Half a moment later a stream of greenish liquid shot out from above the edge of the second story roof top. It struck the robot and all its various pieces became unattached, flying in various directions. Tom ducked his head as a wrench struck the wall less that two feet from him.
The bedroom looked clear. Tom lifted the window and crawled through the torn screen.
Stacia perched on the apex if the roof, one leg hang on either side, a full tank of water mixed with glow stick fluid strapped to her back and the MegaSopper 6600 in her hands. She pumped it a few times, took aim, and blasted yet another flying robot out of the sky. That had been the third since Thomas came pelting out of the woods; the fourteenth since climbing up to the roof. She was starting to suspect that some of them were th same sets of pieces, reforming either on their own or by the design of the ninjas. It didn’t matter – she intended to keep Thomas and Stevie safe until the next phase.
Thomas had been her knight in shining armor several times over the last couple weeks. It was about time she could return the favor.
Pump pump. Aim. Fire. Fifteen. Pump pump. Aim. Sixteen.
There was a clack to her right – the skylight in the bathroom, which could be opened with a catch on the inside. Slinging the MegaSopper over her shoulder, she crawled across the roof over to the domed plastic. Pushing it back further, she looked around once more for any other robots headed her way. None. She pulled the tank and gun off her shoulders and dropped them through the skylight, then swung her legs through and into the house.
Tom reached up and wrapped his arms around Stacia’s waist, helping her gently to the ground. Setting her on her feet, he brushed at his clothes awkwardly and avoided eye contact.
“Thanks,” she said, and suddenly leaned forward and pecked him on the cheek. Her face immediately resembled a tomato in color.
“Well, we have a job to do,” said Tom. “You’re taking the squirtgun?”
“Okay, then I have this.” He patted the backpack he had brought with him.
“Where do you think he is?”
Tom shook his head. Their target had been sighted mostly on the lower floor, so that’s what they were going for.
He opened the door into the linen closet, and right away a black shape darted down from the ceiling in their direction. Tom quickly pointed his modified LED flashlight at the space ninja, and the highly focused beam of intense light cut through the creature in an instant. It disintegrated into black dust which floated gently to the floor.
“That was awesome!” Tom exclaimed.
“Won’t last, though,” said Stacia.
They went through the linen closet to the antechamber, down the stairs. No sign of another space ninja. No zombies.
“Be ready with that thing,” said Tom. Stacia nodded.
They came to the bottom step, rounded the corner to the right and looked into the front room. There, standing by the fireplace, was Mr. Gunderson, his back to them. “I’ve been waiting for you,” he said.