Leaving the chamber where CereB.O.R.G. had entrapped him, Eclipse moved along through a long corridor that snaked around quite a bit before bringing him to another chamber that was quickly filling up with Mar ‘doxxals. He remained hidden behind the outcropping that served as a wall and counted seventeen of the alien beasts. That was far more than he felt he could safely handle at the moment, but if these creatures were aiding CereB.O.R.G. in conquering the Earth he had to do everything he could to stop them as soon as possible. It looked as though that meant right now, regardless of how he was feeling.
He stopped and made an inspection of his suit. He had developed this suit to be actively functional, as though an ordinary man would be wearing it and needed its extra functions of intricate technology. Despite all he had been through, the suit seemed to be working perfectly. Sure, the fabric itself was a little worse for wear, but everything he had built into it worked fine. Considering how weak he currently felt, though he was still stronger than any ordinary Terran, and looking at the number of Mar ‘doxxals he was going to have to wade through, Eclipse knew he needed any extra edge he could give himself.
Working the psy-link controls the suit “warmed up”. He felt a slight tingling, as though a steady thrum of energy was permeating the cells of his body. Suddenly he experienced a surge of strength he hadn’t before energizing the suit and he was thankful he had been as foresightful as he had when considering his having to convince officials such as the FBI as to the functionality of his suit so no one would entertain thoughts that he might actually be Earth’s former champion. He still didn’t know if the extra he received from his suit would be enough to get him through this many Mar ‘doxxals, but he didn’t have much choice at the moment.
Readying himself for the task at hand Eclipse entered the room at a fast pace, hoping to get partially through before being spotted. If he could get at least part-way to the exit on the other side of the chamber before having to stop and fight these aliens he thought he’d stand a better chance.
His planning had been good and he managed to make it actually somewhat more than half-way before a few of the aliens caught sight of him and turned his direction. Others crowded around him even as he began swinging his fists at one alien after another. The aliens were stunned by his blows, but not enough to take each one he hit completely out of the battle. All he was achieving seemed to be to lessen the odds against him momentarily until the ones he’d stunned recovered and rejoined the fray. That meant he effectively had an unlimited number of Mar ‘doxxal to fight, and these creatures didn’t know how to sit back and watch any battle involving their race. It was all or nothing to them. Well, actually it was more like it was all to them. There was no such thing as a Mar ‘doxxal not getting involved in a fight. They lived for carnage and the bloodier it was the better. And they loved the taste of blood. Any blood. It never mattered to them what species the blood was from, somehow it always tasted good to them.
Somewhere within his battle he thought about using his force field and activated it through his psy-link. That helped quite a bit. He should have thought about it sooner, but he really wasn’t used to having a force field or even needing one. His own invulnerability had always been enough for him. Now he needed extras.
Speaking of extras, he had been using his laser-vision focused through the visor of this suit, which turned the beam green and focused his twin beams into one. The suit itself actually had a laser program built into it, though it wasn’t as strong as his own. If he added the power of the suit with his own ocular energy it should pretty much equal what he’d always been used to having. Eclipse gave it a try and was pleased with the results. One after another the aliens cried out in pain from where his laser-vision struck them. He tried aiming for their eyes, thinking that if he could blind them it would help even more. Eyes were usually fairly soft organs on any species and should do a lot of damage. More of the creatures began falling away as he focused his lasers on their eyes, screaming louder than before as each one found its eyes burned beyond redemption.
Still there were more than enough to cause him to become weary from the constant beating he himself was taking as the Mar ‘doxxal ganged up on this foe and managed to finally drag him to the ground. They started piling on top of him, preventing the worn hero from being able to swing his fists effectively any longer, but suddenly he started noticing there seemed to be less of the creatures as the weight driving him down lessened. When it got to where he could once more swing his fists and use his laser-vision he realized something else was going on that was assisting him in taking down these aliens. He chanced a glance to his left and was surprised, though pleased, to find his own wife and her FBI partner just inside the entrance he had been heading for. Each of them held a rifle-like weapon they were using to blast away at the aliens and although neither weapon was apparently powerful enough to kill any of the creatures, they seemed to be doing enough damage to keep the beings from continuing to fight.
What were the weapons they were using and where had they…then he recalled why the weapons seemed so familiar. Meredith, in her old life, had used one of them before. They were the Zeus Particle Cannons from the S.P.A.R.T.A. Labs. She must have gone there with Robertson and secured one for each of them – along with the suits they were wearing. Smart thinking on her part. Inwardly he smiled. Outwardly he continued fighting Mar ‘doxxals.
Finally, between the two Zeus Cannons and his strength and lasers, the number of the creatures dropped considerably and those remaining were so physically damaged they found it impossible to continue fighting, though their genetic disposition caused them to want to continue on until each of their enemies was being chewed greedily within their maws.
“Let’s get out of here, shall we?” Meredith said as she placed a hand on Eclipse’s shoulder. He nodded and followed after the two agents in hurrying through the exit. Once they had gone a short way down the corridor Meredith turned, aimed her cannon and released a long blast at the ceiling that caused the rock to cave-in, covering the entrance and preventing any of the aliens from following after them.
“You’ve got a great brain in that head of yours,” Eclipse said, careful not to put too much of a personal emphasis on his words. He didn’t want Robertson seeing a relationship between them.
“We’re not out of the woods, yet,” Meredith responded.
“What do you mean?” he asked.
“Follow us. There’s more to this alien invasion than just those things back there.” Meredith followed after Robertson in returning to the chamber where the caskets of eggs had been stacked. They showed the contents of the open one to Eclipse, who shook his head.
“Are there more rooms filled with these eggs?” he asked.
“We don’t know,” Robertson answered. “These were the only ones we came across before we heard the screams of the aliens you were fighting. We haven’t had time to search through any of the other chambers.”
“What do we do with these?” Meredith gestured toward the eggs.
“I’d like to say ‘destroy them’,” Eclipse said, “but as much as I detest those creatures we just fought, I find it difficult to consider destroying any of their race before they have the chance to be born.”
“From what I saw of those things back there,” Robertson’s voice sounded harsh and condemning, “they didn’t look like a race of being that had any compassion or conscience. If we hadn’t come along they wouldn’t have stopped until they had killed you.”
“You’re right on that count,” Eclipse sighed. “And you’re right in your estimation of these beings as a race – they have no compassion or conscience. Everything encoded into their DNA tells them to be savage and vindictive. They torture every race they come in contact with, then eat everything they torture, and they don’t usually wait until their food is dead before beginning to eat it, either.”
“And these are the creatures you hesitate to destroy just because they’re still in their eggs?”
“I know, it doesn’t necessarily make sense to me, either, but…”
“What if these were chicken eggs and you knew that if the chickens that hatched from them were going to produce bacteria that would decimate all life on Earth. Would you have any qualms about killing those?”
“I see your point,” Eclipse stood from where he’d been crouching over the open casket. “All right, I guess we really don’t have much choice. We destroy these eggs or when they hatch they’ll kill any and all humans they meet. He took an egg from the casket and placed it on the ground before him.
“Stand back,” Eclipse said as he focused his laser-vision on one of the eggs. He hit the egg with as much energy as he could – and the egg exploded. Not with enough force to destroy the other eggs nestled in with it, but enough to knock Eclipse backward where he struck the opposite wall behind him, causing the rock to break and part of the wall to crumble in on him.
“That was unexpected,” he said as he picked himself up off the ground and brushed the dust from his suit.
“I’ll say,” Meredith knelt and picked up one of the unharmed eggs. She looked it over more carefully, as though by scrutinizing the unborn creature inside she could learn what had made it explode that way. “The fluid around it – I had thought it was nothing but amniotic fluid, like with human babies, but what if this is something that’s highly flammable?”
“That’s possible,” Eclipse said as he picked up an egg and studied it. “It does look somewhat oily, possibly like some form of petroleum.
Noises from the corridor behind them caught their attention and they all looked toward the open entrance to the room.
“Sounds like we’re about to meet the parents,” Robertson leveled his Zeus Cannon at the empty doorway.
Meredith looked at the egg in her hand and smiled. “Let me try something here,” she said. She waited until she saw a foot from one of the Mar ‘doxxals move forth from the doorway and then a body joined to it. She hurled the egg she held hard against the alien and the egg exploded upon contact. The alien roared in pain and anger, but was blown backward harder than Eclipse had been.
“I think we just found an answer as to what to do with these eggs as well as how to take the offensive against those aliens,” Meredith reached down to arm herself with more of the eggs.