The Impresario: Scene Five

 

They materialized in a room dominated by Zaftig’s bulk.

Wadley cried piteously when he saw the alien towering over them. Zaftig looked even more belligerent than when he was Sid’s office. Rhonda watched the alien through hooded eyes. Transporting them to his ship meant Zaftig intended skullduggery. She fished around in her pocketbook and put the translator ring on her right hand. Next, she found the brass knuckles her father had given her for her twentieth birthday. She slipped it on the fingers on her left hand and took the switchblade knife in her right.

“So!” Zaftig rubbed several tentacles together and said in a villainous voice, “We meet again. This time you will tell me what I want to know.”

“Pleeze!” Rhonda said. “Spare us your imitation of the bad guys from the old black-and-white detective movies.”

Wadley tried to scratch his way through the ship’s outer bulkhead.

“It’s a violation of our laws to transport people without their permission.” Sid wagged a finger at Zaftig. “I recommend that you return us immediately before you compound your troubles.”

“Unless you tell me where Ded Lazar is, I will dismember this puny human.” Zaftig stared at Wadley. “I’ll start with the extremities on his feet and you will listen to his miserable wailing until you reveal what I want to know.”

Wadley didn’t have a translator ring but he understood the look Zaftig gave him. “Save me,” he pleaded. “I’ll drop the investigation. I swear.”

“I warn you Zaftig,” Sid said. “Don’t touch the man.”

Zaftig wrapped a tentacle around Wadley’s leg and looked at Sid. “What will you do, little man?”

“I’ll turn you over to my assistant to do what she will.”

Zaftig’s eyeballs rotated to Rhonda. She smiled at him and tapped her brass knuckles against the metal bulkhead. She winked as the switchblade hissed open.

“So.” Zaftig hesitated for a few moments. “You insignificant humans have one thing in common with my vastly superior race. Much to my surprise.”

“And that is?” Sid asked.

“In both races, the females are assassins. Only an idiot would antagonize one of them.” He pointed to the transporter platform. “Go. But this isn’t over yet. No human will ever best me. If Ded Lazar doesn’t quickly agree to my terms, I’ll use your office as the target for a neutrino grenade.”

 

To be continued

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