Flash Challenge,  Space Fiction


She sped up. Water splashed under her heavy boots. Rain and sweat damaged her makeup and now her cheeks glittered in green and black. She pulled the strings off the hood to conceal her skin. They were gaining on her. Miserable weather ensured fewer witnesses.
“Winners never quit, quitters never win,” she chanted with each step. How naive she was to think she could be one of them? She waved her hand to push that thought away. This was not the time to ponder. She had to focus. One leg after another. Left, right, left, right, repeat.
She gasped for air but winced at the fumes of burnt oil and vinegar. Without looking up, she turned into an alley behind Fish’n’Chips takeaway. One of many things she won’t miss.
“Almost there, almost there,” she said to herself. She turned around. Two dark suits were still behind her. She started to run. “Just one more corner. I won’t quit.” She turned over a trash bin. Leftovers and potato peel rolled between the walls. Puddles of water mixed with mayo and ketchup. She smiled at the ramble and, cursing behind, jumped over a stray cat and froze for a second as a sudden pain ripped through her side. The second shot missed her. She took the next left and, with blood-covered hands, pushed aside boxes and crates to reveal a basement window.
All she had to do was reach the top. She limped up the stairs. She took off her drenched hoodie, then a head band she always wore to hide her ears. She pushed her scarf against the wound and kept going. The heavy steps behind were getting louder.
“You got this. Few more minutes,” she comforted herself until she got there. There it was. The top floor. She yanked the door to the rooftop. “Not a problem, not a problem.” She pulled a gun, and instead of a bullet, a laser beam cut through the lock. She ran outside.
“Major Alk here. Ready to go.” She screamed. “Right now. Beam me up.”

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