Elena L’Apriscatole and Sonia Por Favor ran like the wind through
the streets of the palace, closely followed by Peter the Ace and Panman.
"Mi sento debole!" Elena L’Apriscatole said. She stopped
running and sat down against a lamppost.
"What are you doing now!" Sonia Por Favor yelled.
"Non mi sento bene."
"I don't feel too well."
"There are still two bounty hunters after us!"
"I feel faint!"
Sonia Por Favor realised that she too was beginning to feel faint. She sat
down next to her companion.
"Ho un dolore qui" Elena L’Apriscatole said, pointing to
"you've got a headache?"
"Si, il mal di testa."
"Me too." Sonia Por Favor's vision started to blur. She could
just make out the two bounty hunters as they approached. "I feel so
tired." She said lethargically.
"Si." Elena L’Apriscatole slipped calmly into unconsciousness.
Sonia Por Favor sat and stared blankly for a few seconds until a sudden
flash of realisation hit her. "I know this place." She said drowsily.
"I've been here before! I…"
Sonia Por Favor fell into a deep, dreamless sleep.
With the orbital battle well and truly over, the next three hours were
spent ridding the palace's streets of the unholy army of the night and
re-energising its power core. Hundreds of bounty hunters returned from
battle and helped the slaughter of the slaughtered. Under intense fire,
the stumbling corpses were blown into bite-sized chunks of putrid flesh,
causing the auto-street cleaners a lot of inconvenience. It was not long
before calm returned. Shopping malls re-opened, theme parks unlocked their
gates, highways filled with traffic, and parks and gardens were once again
alive with the happy sound of contented visitors. Idyllic bliss.
Sonia Por Favor regained consciousness, sat up, and looked around. She
seemed to be in some sort of medical bay. In front of her were several
empty beds, each with large screens above them, ready to display the vital
signs of prospective patients. On the bed next to her lay Elena L’Apriscatole,
still unaware of the cognizant world. Sonia Por Favor was highly confused.
How did they both get here?
Two powerfully armoured men and a short, white coated woman entered the
"Sonia Por Favor!" One of the men said. "It's good to have
you back with us."
Memories flooded back into Sonia Por Favor’s mind. "Peter the
Ace!" She said in a bewildered way. "Where are we?"
"You're in the Central Tower med-labs at the Palace of Amino."
"Of course!" She said gleefully. "I remember it all now!
We're bounty hunters of great skill and dexterity."
"Indeed you are!"
Elena L’Apriscatole re-acquired her sentience and sat up sharply.
"Vorrei una bottiglia di vino bianco."
Everyone looked at Elena L’Apriscatole. She suddenly regained her
memories and smiled at the familiar people around her.
"Come sta?" Peter the Ace said. He was fluent in hundreds of
languages and constantly astounded everyone with his linguistic abilities.
"Bene!" Elena L’Apriscatole replied.
"Could everyone please speak in English!" Sonia Por Favor said.
"OK." Elena L’Apriscatole said reluctantly. She looked
at Peter the Ace and Panman. "Tell me what happened to us?"
"As far as we know," Panman said, "you and Sonia Por Favor
went missing during the final atomic struggle of the Ohm-Jahms swamp crisis
one year ago."
"I remember!" Sonia Por Favor and Elena L’Apriscatole
said in unison.
Panman continued. "It was thought that you'd been absorbed and digested
by the bile pits of the Viskerah Gulch but we now know differently. Apparently
some of Lawrence's deadly henchmen kidnapped you and implanted remote
neural activation controllers deep within your brains. Because of your
detailed knowledge of the palace's layout, Lawrence placed you in charge
of his unholy army of the night and commanded you to lead the attack upon
our command centre. The transmitter that was controlling you must have
been destroyed during the final minutes of the orbital battle, that's
why you both fainted and then subsequently regained your memories."
"Whoa!" Sonia Por Favor said. "That's so cool!"
"What about the devices in our brains?" Elena L’Apriscatole
"They have been removed with expertise." The female nurse said
without a hint of emotion. "You are completely free of their influence."
"Anyway, enough of this idle banter." Peter the Ace said. "The
offensive against the palace has been thwarted and the battle fleets of
Lawrence decimated. Let's celebrate with a slap up meal at Shely's Sustenance
"Awesome idea!" Panman exclaimed with delight.
Sonia Por Favor and Elena L’Apriscatole agreed. The four bounty
hunters left the medical bay and headed for the restaurant.