The story so far:
She reached for the buckle of her seatbelt while her eyes traced the slow erratic flight of the Mongerer. Not knowing what else to do, she released the belt and fell into a heap on the jeep ceiling. Unfortunately, she landed on her bad leg.
Renni curled into ball, tears streaming down her face, the pain so strong she nearly threw up from it. She cried out a soft wail and gripped her leg. Then, slowly, the agony passed and became pain once more. She could turn her body and face the windshield. The Mongerer had stopped a few feet away. It began to glow brighter.
Flames erupted near command center. The Mongerer turned fully from her. Renni used the moment to her advantage. The driver side door hung on one hinge, giving her access to the outside. Stretching her upper body out, she pulled herself under the body of the driver still hanging in his seat. As she crawled, she noticed a tire iron leaning against the brakes, probably flung into the front seat when they’d rolled. She grabbed it and dragged her body fully from the jeep.
Even though she grunted several times pulling herself off the ground and onto her good leg, the Mongerer did not turn towards her. Through the light of the fire burning the last remains of the command center, she saw why.
Several Mongerers had converged into one massive creature once again. This time, however, they did not devastate their victim. Instead, it fought back.
Whatever it was, it wasn’t human. It fought the Mongerers with a ferocity that she’d never seen before. The bright red eyes of the creature near her still faced away, its attention fully upon the fight. She hefted the tire iron in her hands, holding it like a baseball bat over her shoulders. She then took a step towards the Mongerer.
Renni hadn’t counted on one thing, her injuries. She collapsed, her leg completely unable to bear any weight. She couldn’t have even limped towards her enemy had she wanted to. Instead, as she fell to the ground, her enemy turned to face her.
It moved slowly, almost hesitantly. She pulled herself to her good knee, the tire iron still in her hand, her arm relaxed at her side. She did not want to draw attention to the weapon, not yet. The Mongerer glowed all the brighter the closer it came towards her. But none of its brothers joined it. Whatever fought them near the command center had robbed it of its advantage. It clicked its pinchers and blinked all its eyes at once. It then charged.
Renni raised her arms at the last moment before swinging the iron in a wide arc. She hit the Mongerer on the side of the head, sending it hurling from her at an odd angle. It crashed against the jeep and fell to the ground. Half the eyes on its head no longer shone red. It blinked the remainder of the lights and lifted from the ground. Though Renni saw no face and could make out no expressions, she knew she’d pissed it off.
It came at her again, this time bobbing and weaving. She swung out at it, but missed. It dodged and dove. A tiny white light flung out at her from one of its legs. It hit the back of her right hand, burning a tiny hole into her flesh. She dropped the iron.
The Mongerer dove again. Again it attacked, this time with two bolts of white light. Both hit the same hand striking near where she’d first been hit. Renni shook off the pain, knowing if she didn’t do something, she’d end up like the man who’d died trying to crawl to safety. She reached for the tire iron, took the next hit of five bolts, and swung out. The Mongerer dodged the blow and flew in closer. All its legs lit up, ready to shoot the sharp bolts into her body.
Something flew through the air and hit the Mongerer with enough force to stun it. It flitted around, all lights on its head blank. Renni turned and saw the creature that had fought with the other Mongerers. It was still a long way off, its feet surrounded with a writhing swarm of dying helmet sized fireflies. It pointed at the Mongerer near her. Another bolt of reddish yellow light flew down to the ground; another swarm of Mongerers converged upon the creature. The creature turned away from her.
Renni faced her enemy once more. The Mongerer spun in circles, its eyes blinking on and off again. All its legs remained lit up and as it spun it began flinging the white lights blindly. Two hit her, one in the face the other in the shoulder.
With both hands, she gripped the iron and raised it high above her head. She put all her weight into that one last ax-swing down. She hit it in the neck and cleaved the head from the body.
The head fell to the ground and bounced twice before coming to a stop near her. Renni watched as something dark oozed from the gaping hole in the neck. She fell to the ground, exhausted. But she did not close her eyes. Not yet. Renni instead watched as the ooze continued to flow from the head. Then something else came out, something small and tangible. It didn’t just come out; it walked out on all fours, a small fuzzy creature similar to a mouse or hamster. Only with eight legs. And eight hands. It scurried towards her and she saw its mouth, open wide, sharp fangs bared.
A massive boot slammed down on the creature inches from her face. Renni looked up and saw her defender, the one who had defeated swarms of Mongerers single-handedly.