A Hard Rain

A Field of Stars, Part 2

Resurrecting the Beast.

“Torque wrench.”

Ipip leaned down and placed the tool in Frank’s outstretched hand. From her perch on the hood of the old GTO, she could only see his legs sticking out from beneath it. She returned to her previous position, leaning against the windshield, and went back to her book. “Attenborough’s Guide to Hermetic Healing, Volume 1.” It had been sitting in her room for months, and only recently had she gotten around to reading it. From beneath the car, there was a grunt and the sound of a small metal object rattling.

“Dammit. Ok, now I need the magnetic screwdriver on a stick.”

“What happened?”

“I… Dropped something.”

“What did you drop?”

“Something important.”

Ipip accepted this answer, and handed down the jury-rigged implement. She didn’t know much about cars, but with Texx gone walkabout and Crawford in Britain, she was the only assistant in evidence. She didn’t mind. The garage was mostly pretty quiet, and with the right assortment of pillows she could sit and read in comfort, her cat purring beside her.

There hadn’t been much else to do, at any rate. Things were quiet. They had moved back into Hill Manor after beefing up security, there had been no bad dreams beyond the norm, and in general everything seemed…

Normal. Too normal, perhaps. Ipip had become accustomed to facing danger at every turn, and this lull did little except to incite her paranoia. There must be balance in all things, and the longer this period of safety lasted, the more terrible the oncoming storm must be. Or, maybe, it was all over forever… And she wasn’t sure which possibility made her more nervous.

“Alright, I think I got it.”

Frank extricated himself from the underside of the car. It was nearly unrecognizable from the broken down state they’d found it in. New racing seats, new-to-him rims and tires, and armored panels made the thing resemble something an extra from Mad Max might own. This pleased Frank, and Ipip had to admit it was an appropriate vehicle for hunting monsters. The gun rack in the trunk didn’t hurt matters.

“Let’s see if this thing sounds as awesome as it looks.”

Ipip slid off the hood, followed by her feline companion. With a press of the clutch and a turn of the key, the engine roared to life. As Frank whooped in triumph, Ipip and Apollo climbed into the passenger seat.

“Time for a test drive?”

“Time for a test drive.”

The newly restored Beast roared out of the garage, leaving a trail of burnt rubber.



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