Here we go with Snapshot 2 for Titan Hoppers. I have 1 more planned which I’m hoping to get written next week.

Snapshot 2 – Lara and Ben

“Block,” Ben shouted at the humanoid monster as he drew his dual shields together. The monster’s club smashed into the shields and rebounded. Ben dropped the shields, leaving them standing, darted in between them.

“Uppercut.” He ducked a swiping claw, rose leading with his fist and delivered a punch that knocked the monster off its feet and into the air.

“Slam,” he shouted as he grabbed the monster’s thorny foot, twisted, brought the created crashing down to the metal floor between his two shields. The monster bounced, its armored hide cracking from the force.

“Distraction,” Ben said. He jumped back a step, put his hands on his hips and blew a kiss at the monster as it struggled back to its feet.

The monster roared, stringy spittle flying, then hacked, coughed, spasmed, and finally drooled blood as the air shimmered behind it, revealing Lara dragging a knife down its back. She stepped back, kicking the monster aside and it sprawled on the floor, steaming insides leaking from the jagged hole in its back.

“Ahh, Lara, just in time as always.” Ben sauntered forwards and leaned on one his shields, gazing at the short, gloomy woman. “What would I do without you?”

“Die a horrible, gruesome death.”

Ben nodded. “You’re probably right.”

Lara flicked the gore from her knife. “It was a request, not a suggestion.”

“Wounded,” Ben said, placing a hand over his heart. “Besides, you’d miss me. Who would you trade your barbs with if not me.”

“Literally anyone else.”

“And yet,” Ben tapped on his wrist tablet to inform the squad leader they had dispatched the last of the monsters in the idyllic arboretum. “You do keep ending up on squads with me. A man can’t help but feel it’s not just coincidence.” He winked at her. “I think you like my company really.”

“Nope.” Her searing white crest flared in front of her for a moment, the air shimmered, then she was gone. Ben couldn’t even hear her moving she was so stealthy.

Ben felt a hard tap on his back, right between two armor plates and knew it was Lara showing off, saying she could have killed him. He let out a loud cry of fake pain, dropped to his knees and clawed at the air.

“Dramatic… death… scene…” He slumped forward onto the floor and lay there for a few moments. Lara did not reappear.

“How was it?” Ben asked. The only answer he got was the hiss of monster innards escaping their cracked shell. “Too much? Not enough?” He got back to his knees and looked around. “Lara? I need feedback, Lara.”

He stood and picked up his shields again. There was no sight of Lara at all. “Yep. She definitely likes you, Ben.”

“I’d rather kiss vacuum.”