APAGear II Archives Volume 1, Number 2 January, 1999


Everybody Was HG Fighting and

Caprice: 5975 (TN1723)--The Parting

Candy Man


Everybody Was HG Fighting
Caprice: 5975 (TN1723)--The Parting

Everybody Was HG Fighting

(To the tune of "Everybody Was Kung-Fu Fighting," by Carl Douglas)

Everybody was HG Fighting
Those Cheets were fast as lightning
The Mambas were a little bit frightening
But Fire Support had good timing

There were funky Southie scum,
From funky Southie swamps.
Their Vipers shut down
Their Vipers blew up.
The Ferret's a work of art
and in the forest knows its part.
From the spotting to the hit
and an MG from the hip

Everybody was HG fighting
Those Cheets were fast as lightning
The Mambas were a little bit frightening
But Fire Support had good timing

There was Funky Rabid Griz, and little Bobcat too
He said "Here comes the Duelist -- Let's get it on!"
Jag took a bow and made a stand...
started spraying with the MAC
Sudden motion made him miss
Now we're tracking a brand-new blip!

Everybody was HG fighting
Those tanks were packing lightning
The GRELs were pretty damned frightening
But the Earthers had bad timing...
Hooo yeah! (oooh-oooh)

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Caprice: 5975 (TN1723)--The Parting

(Note: Part one of this story appeared in Volume 1, Issue 1 of APAGear II --Ed.)

Declaring the quarantine was not enough. The Chairman still had to sign hundreds of forms. There were forms to authorise the use of buildings to handle the emergency. Overtime and hazard pay for the police officers. Speeches had to be read, and sent back for revisions. At least it gave him a reason to stay secluded in his office.

After signing yet another form, in triplicate, the Chairman stretched and opened the blinds. Below, thousands of people had managed to gather for a protest, despite the travel restrictions in place. A few stood on crates with bullhorns, screaming until they were red in the face. Some quietly sat on the concrete, holding handmade signs. Most, however were standing, and occasionally joining together for a fist-shaking chant. Though none of the words were clearly transmitted through the glass of the Chairman's window, he got a good taste of the sheer volume they were generating.

The Chairman stepped out of the inner office and saw a man in the midst of an argument with his assistant, Thuf. The man stopped the argument, and looked up at the Chairman. "Mr. Chairman! I need to speak with you, sir!"

Thuf gave the Chairman a helpless look and shrugged. "What about?" the Chairman asked, using his most annoyed voice.

"Well, sir, we--and by we, I'm referring to myself and a few other Liberati--are being held here, in the city of Gommorrah against our will by this quarantine. I assure you that we have not been infected. None of us are symptomatic, nor have we been in contact with anyone who is symptomatic..."

"As I told you before, that doesn't mean you're not infected! Surely you must realise that." Thuf helpfully pointed out.

"Sir! You can test us if you want--we're not infected!" The man saw that the Chairman was clearly not convinced. "Think of our families!" The man cried, stepping closer to the Chairman. "They're out there, worried sick about us, with only the cold, Caprician winds for company... Life is hard outside of Gommorrah, Mr. Chairman. Why should you make their lives any harder?" The man pleaded.

"It is exactly your families that I AM thinking about! Your families, and all the families of all the mining towns outside of Gommorrah. There is no way to be certain that if I let you leave, you wouldn't bring the disease with you, and infect the whole planet! The ban on travel applies to everyone, including the Liberati. Now, if you will excuse me, I have some work to do." The Chairman said, grabbing a stack of papers from Thuf's desk and retreating into his inner office.

The man turned and left the Chairman's office, ignoring Thuf's apology. Outside, a group of people stood as he walked out. "Andrew!" One exclaimed, "Did he agree to let us go?"

"No." The man said. "He is being most unreasonable. It looks like we'll have to find a way around the Corporations, as usual..."

The bed was empty, had been for days. Or was it minutes? They had taken Kat then, said that the counsellor would be right in.

She was busy of late, but Salicco would be her top priority. Where was she then?

Salicco stared at the depression in the pillow, and tried to clear her head. The incinerator, that's where they had taken Kat. She ran to the washroom and stared at the toilet. She breathed deep and thought about when she went through the Gate. We're back in normal space now. We're back on Caprice now. Her head cleared a little, and she held her stomach.

The incinerator--of course. They had to stop the spread of the disease, to keep other little sisters from getting infected. "I need to take a walk." She told the tear-streaked face in the mirror.

She looked down the hallway, and saw nothing but closed doors. Someone cleared their throat behind her. She spun around and gasped.

"Shh..." He put a finger to his face mask. "It'll alright."

"Are you the counsellor?" She asked, looking for a nametag.

"No, my name is Andrew..."

Mrs. MacKenzie walked into Annette's room, where her husband sat, stroking Annette's head. "You should get some sleep. I'll take over from here."

Captain MacKenzie looked up at her. "Are you sure you're going to be all right?"

"I'll be fine," She whispered. "Go to bed."

He stood up and kissed her forehead. "Wake me if you have any trouble."

Two days ago, Robert, her brother, had died. The doctors had assisted his suicide early, as they had with all terminally-ill patients, to make more room for the influx of sick children.

Yesterday, they had taken Annette out of the hospital to treat her at home, not being able to bear what her bed had cost.

Now, Annette was worse than ever. It's all my fault. We should have stayed at the hospital. Mrs. MacKenzie got a wet cloth and dabbed at Annette's forehead. Does she even know I'm here? Or is she in that far-off place where Robert was? She cried, and put her head on Annette's chest. Annette didn't move.

Mrs. MacKenzie wrapped Annette in blankets, and carried her to the roof of the apartment building. It was mid-morning. Today, like every day, most of the city of Gommorrah was still covered by shadow, though the sky above had been bright for hours. Mrs. MacKenzie sat down and began to slowly rock with Annette in her arms.

As time went by, buildings began to light up, and the terminator could be seen moving towards them, racing across the floor of the canyon where Gommorrah was cradled. Annette's breathing, which had been raspy all day, was getting worse.

Mrs. MacKenzie turned around, and walked closer to the edge of the building. She looked up at the jagged edge of the canyon wall, cutting into the sky. "You know, Annette, your daddy tells me that on Terra Nova, there are no walls like this. You can see forever in every direction, and the sun comes up at the same time inside and outside the cities. You can see the sunrise without craning your neck up, and people don't wallow in the shadow all their lives..."

Annette stopped breathing.

The sun broke over the lip of the canyon, basking them in its warm glow.

She jumped.

To be continued...

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APAGear II Archives Volume 1, Number 2 January, 1999