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Many people visit the rim worlds of the Strine Confederation, Especially the paradise planet of Noosau Wales, with its golden beaches and famous breweries. But only a handful of these visitors attempt the dangerous land crossing between Point A (the polar planetary spaceport) and Point B (the site of the equatorial space elevator.) Midway between Point A and Point B is the small hamlet of Lyesmith, home of Scurvy's Pizza - the only pizza parlor in the district - and ExxonMobilAOL Fuel Cells.

You could, in fairness, say that Colonial Marines aren't exactly tourists, either. If they were, they might have gotten better treatment by the locals. That is, if the locals weren't drunk on yam scotch and cross with each other. The Marines were running out of power for their transport. The Clanners of McGee and Kreacher were drunk. And fate threw them together in Lyesmith that terrible day.

There were only three Marines, but with their armor, superior weaponry, and leadership, they were the best combatants on the table. What the Clanners lacked in weaponry, they made up in numbers and drunken courage. But none of them were as tough in melee as the famous Scurvy, who was determined to defend his pizza parlor to the death.

The Marines opted to make a quick swoop into the fuel cell station, take a turn to swap out the fuel cell, and then zip out of there. They came in from the north, laying down barrages of bolter fire that should have impressed or murdered the clanners, but didn't hit anything. The Kreachers opened fire on the McGees, knocking two of them out. The McGees, incensed over the disruption of their feud, fired in mass at the Marines, killing one and knocking out their transport. That was when the Marine sergeant got mad.

The Marines regrouped, charged out from behind the burning hulk of their transport, and descended upon the McGees with knives, pistols, rifle butts, iron boots, and harsh language. The McGees obliged by dying.

The Kreachers, overjoyed at their fortune and lacking the ability for reflective thought, began looting the fuel cell station. Scurvy, a partial owner in that enterprise, stood on the front porch of his pizza parlor and blazed away with his pistol, knocking out Old Man Kreacher. The Kreachers ducked behind cover, and lobbed grenades at the Scurvy's Pizza. They hit a propane tank, which exploded. That was when Scurvy got mad.

Grabbing the half-moon shaped pizza cutter, he bellowed a terrible cry and waded into the Kreachers. The Kreachers failed in two crucial points - they failed to hit Scurvy, and then they failed to run away. By the end of the turn, four Kreachers were dead, the remainder stood slack-jawed, and Scurvy was just warming up.

Not far away, the Marines were finishing teaching the McGees a lesson in the ways of pain and anguish. Sighting a spare transport near the power cell station, they went to seize it... and ran into Scurvy.

Scurvy had no real beef with the Marines, and would have been fine if they'd simply swiped a power cell. Hell, the local kids drive off without paying half the time. But a man has to draw the line at grand theft transport. The Marines were quite thankful that this civilian had help quell a domestic riot, but were nonplussed that their requisition of the transport was being contested. So, by mutual agreement, they debated the matter with weaponry.

Scurvy decapitated the Marine sergeant, and subdued the surviving Marine. To this day, Marine O. Fretmen #20093-239 is still at Scurvy's Pizza as a cook, his weekly wages docked until the damage to the kitchen and Lyesmith fuel depot are paid back.

In the carnage, Scurvy also managed to blank out my digital camera's card. "NO PRESS!" he roared.


Pete Murray

Sci-fi Scenarios

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