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Book: Bounty Hunters of the Palace of Amino
Chapter 58: Condemned Vessel

The Morbid and the Satyr, two extraordinary ships of ingenious design, lead a formation of twelve other bounty hunter warships on an overwhelming attack upon the final command ship.


"Break and fuckin' obliterate!" Ross Mental ordered, sending the Morbid into a power dive.

The Satyr banked to the right, skimming the port side of the massive command vessel. The other ships performed equally amazing feats of flying, their weapons bursting with high concentrations of energetic mayhem. A blanket of blinding explosions encompassed the hull of the ten kilometre long craft sending shudders through its entire frame.

"If we keep this up," Sarah Savage said, spiralling her ship through a hail of enemy fire, "this baby will blow in no time!" She launched a quartet of concussion bombs and then climbed away at a phenomenal rate of knots. The bombs detonated, breaking through the shields and shattering the hull. Secondary blasts spread throughout the enormous vessel.

"One more run!" The brutal bounty hunter screamed, pulling her ship round and back onto an intercept course.

The squadron of bounty hunter craft flitted around the command ship like flies around a turd. Flies, however, use vomit, not fusion cannons, to break apart their target.

"Yes!" Ross Mental shrieked with demonic delight as he launched all of his remaining missiles.

The combined force of the final attack was enough. The command ship erupted into a torrent of white fire. The bounty hunters thrusted rapidly away, barely able to escape the spreading inferno.


"The final command ship has been destroyed!" Chief Officer Chimpapazapadon announced with delight. "All that remains is that mothership and a couple of hundred fighters."

"Fantastic!" Commander Pepe said. "Prepare the LARDBALLS for firing on my command."

"Yes, commander."

Commander Pepe got up heavily out of his luxurious chair and hauled his immense frame over to the balcony that overlooked the Amino Battle Command centre. He stared up at the LARDBALLS targeting screen. This is going to be sweet! He thought.


"Complete incompetence on an unbelievable scale!" Lawrence yelled as he watched the last of his command ships explode into fiery debris. He had six other command ships, but they were busy battling the defence forces of the central worlds and suffering embarrassing damage.

The murky lord of slaughter turned to face the bridge crew. They cowered behind their consoles. "Channel all power to the weapons systems!" He bellowed. "Fire everything at the palace now!"

The crew obeyed without question. Dozens of potent beams of sparkling sapphire connected with the Palace of Amino's shields. The shields began to weaken.

"I wanted the palace intact so that I could rule the galaxy from its confines." Lawrence screamed dementedly. "No more! Decimate it entirely!"

The mothership's powerful weapons continued their ceaseless assault.


Elena L’Apriscatole fiddled with the control panel in one of the cinema's projection rooms. "Puòi aiutarmi?" She said to Sonia Por Favor who had just entered the room with a look of extreme annoyance on her face.

"If you're saying what I think you're saying, no I don't know how to work it!"

"Penso che l'impianto elettrico non funzioni!"

"What?"

Elena L’Apriscatole ripped the front panel of the console off and threw it to the floor. "É indespensabile avere quel ricambio?" She said pointing to a tube like structure.

"Speak English!" Sonia Por Favor screamed.

Using her extreme strength, Elena L’Apriscatole ripped out the tube.

"What are you trying to do?" Sonia Por Favor bellowed. She watched as her mad companion proceeded to punch, kick, chop, slap and poke the control panel's innards. Without warning, the auditorium filled with a blaze of coloured light as the holo-projector sprang into action.

"Splendida!" Elena L’Apriscatole rushed into the theatre and sat down.


Panman had been watching her from the back of the room. "Identify yourself!" He said with eminent authority.

"Dolore!"

In a flash, the female stood up, aimed her cannon and opened fire. Pulses of energy streamed across the auditorium, blowing away the entire back wall. Clouds of dust and debris filled the air. Panman's almost instantaneous digital reflexes allowed him to effortlessly avoid the barrage of shots. He counter attacked with a spread of grenades, wiping out the whole of the theatre's holo-display area. The Images that had been showing disappeared. The female was obviously annoyed. She fired again, destroying several dozen seats.

Peter the Ace arrived and joined Panman who was currently taking cover behind a concessions stand. He was surrounded by charred popcorn and smouldering Pic 'n' Mix.

"Where are they?" Peter the Ace asked.

"One's down the front." Panman said, making the most of some chocolate bars that he had found. "I don't know where the other one is."

Another vicious onslaught destroyed several huge light fittings, causing massive chunks of masonry to crash down around the two bounty hunters.

"I've had enough of this!" Peter the Ace said.

"Me too." Panman agreed.

"Demolition time!" They shouted in unison.

The two galactic heroes opened fire, sending a shower of grenades towards the female. With superb agility, she leapt to safety. The grenades detonated, blowing away the theatre's front wall. The female ran through the huge hole, closely followed by her companion. The two brutal warriors stood in the street outside and sent a blistering shower of energetic death back into the building. Peter the Ace and Panman escaped through a fire exit. Less than a second later, the entire cinema collapsed in a seething cloud of molten stone and steel.


"The palace's shield is loosing energy rapidly, commander!" Chief Officer Chimpapazapadon said anxiously. "That mothership has awesome firepower!"

"Just a few more seconds." Commander Pepe said. "Let it get a little closer."

The mothership was lowering its orbit as it fired. Chief Officer Chimpapazapadon began to sweat as the shield strength dipped below twenty percent.

"Now now now!" The commander ordered.

Chief Officer Chimpapazapadon slammed his fist hard onto a large yellow touch pad.

A low rumbling shook the entire palace as energy coalesced within its foundations causing lighting and machinery around the entire complex to fade and grind to a halt. The defence grid around Enchantia ceased firing for the first time in over twenty seven hours as its life-force was cut to supply the power greedy LARDBALLS. In a glorious display of gigantic, swirling light, three one kilometre wide strands of emerald energy coursed their way up to the mothership. Ninety-nine percent of the Palace of Amino's power supply had been channelled into this final attack.


Lawrence ran around the bridge of Kathwoman's mothership in a most hysterical manner. "What is that?" He said in a squeaky voice, pointing to the twirling bands of green that covered every view port.

"Energy of awesome strength has enveloped the ship." An officer said nervously.

"Destroy its source." The dark lord said, this time in a deep and grating voice.

"I can't, the weapons won't break through it!"

The officer shuddered and died as a thin six inch needle was inserted into the back of his neck and up into his brain. He collapsed onto his console.

The ship began to vibrate.

"What is happening now?" Lawrence said.

Various control panels and wall fittings worked their way loose and crashed to the floor.

"The ship is falling apart!" A spotty cadet said, leaping out of his chair. "All systems are failing!"

"Shut up!" Lawrence screamed, throwing a micro grenade at the acne covered crew member.

The small explosive device attached itself to the cadet's forehead. He frantically tried to remove it without success. It detonated, dissolving the cadet’s head and most of his upper body in a cloud of corrosive vapour. Lawrence walked over to a communications panel.

"I am invincible!" He bellowed, opening a channel to the Palace of Amino.

"I think you're wrong." Commander Pepe said smugly.

"You may have crippled this ship," The dark lord admitted, "but you will soon be wiped out."

"How?"

Lawrence revealed his backup plan. "I have initiated a super-nova in the Sterilia system. It will destroy all planetary systems within a radius of one thousand light years. You will all perish miserably!"

Commander Pepe chuckled. "The Sterilia system is fifty light years from here. As the blast wave is travelling at a mere sub-light speed, we will have well over half a century to move the palace to a new secret location."

"What?" Lawrence said, the sudden realisation of his own incompetence hitting him like a meteorite.

"What do you say to that, then?" Commander Pepe asked with glee.

"No no no no no no!" Lawrence wailed. He looked around at the bridge crew. They were desperately trying to leave. He suddenly felt mysteriously weightless. The officers and cadets began to drift through the air in random directions.

"Artificial gravity has failed!" One of the officers shrieked as he slammed into the ceiling.

More fixtures and fittings were shaken loose and began to float around in a very hazardous manner.

"Repair it!" Lawrence yelled.

No one answered. He noticed that several wall panels had taken on a soft, syrup like texture. In fact, two officers were embedded within them. Also, the view ports had begun to flex and warp wildly. Although deeply insane, Lawrence was highly intelligent. Using his powers of deduction, he decided that this was a critical situation. The ship was doomed. Drawing a small fusion blaster from its ankle holster, he proceeded to slice up every one in his way. His only chance was to reach an escape pod and eject from the condemned vessel. With unbelievable luck, the late Kathwoman's personal escape pod was positioned just outside of the bridge. He climbed inside. The mothership was dissolving rapidly around him, even the escape pod had started to dissipate. "I will escape! Ha ha ha harr!" he laughed, his finger poised over the launch button.


With the beams of the LARDBALLS still pulsating around it, the mothership dissolved completely and faded from view. Without the comforting sight of a mother vessel, the remaining skull fighters began to flee from orbit. The Morbid, the Satyr, and several more bounty hunter ships rocketed after them. Less than three minutes later, they had all been destroyed. The space around Enchantia was once again a sanctuary of peace and serenity.

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