Read all of the episodes of Kain’s story here.
Kain couldn’t smile, per se. That was more of an advantage than one might think. Ze still grinned on the inside. A hump, where zir right shoulder would be, exploded like a giant zit. If, that is, zits were filled with dozens of tiny darts. In case a face full of metal wasn’t a deterrent, each one was tipped with a virulent strain of flesh eating bacteria.
The scream, cut short by the hail of flechettes, indicated the being on the receiving end might not have to worry about the bugs.
“I don’t like being ambushed.” Kain took a couple of steps forward, enjoying the mix of horror and anger on the woman’s face.
To her credit, Lilith kept her hands where they were and more or less maintained her composure. Once she adjusted her attitude. “I can see that. Fortunately, he can be replaced.”
“Can you? I asked you before, and if there’s a thing I hate worse than being jumped, it’s repetition, why should I listen to you?”
“You’ve come this far, and if you try and leave without me, you won’t breathe fresh air again. No matter how many nice tricks you have under your raincoat.” Fear had been replaced by a steely determination.
According to the readouts flickering behind zir eyes, she wasn’t lying. The why of how of her threat didn’t matter. Ze did so love to feel the rain on zir skin. What was left of it. “Go on, then.” The mass driver went back to its home.
“Everything I’ve said is true. And we have enemies, as is apparent by the contract you have.” Lilith licked her luscious red lips. “I want you to take care of those problems we have. We’re not without resources. Since I wasn’t able to beat you, as I was the ones who came before you, I want you to join us.”
Kain squinted. “You want to pay me off to double cross my employer? I’d have to be careful. It would take a lot of money, but also a compelling reason. I don’t believe in your cause. Humanity as it was, proved to be weak and full of itself. We’re better off as we are.”
Lilith stepped forward and placed her hand gently on the plate on Kain’s lower face. It was smooth, warm, and made of flexible scales so small as to give it the illusion of being one piece. “You are? Wouldn’t you love to have everything back that you’ve lost? While I see merit in the improvements made to your form, I know enough to be certain most of them weren’t your idea. The ones I’ve seen are all military grade. You have more than two legs, don’t you?”
Kain nodded. He couldn’t feel her skin on his face, but could sense the pressure. She was barking up the wrong tree. Mostly. There was potential to what she was saying for other reasons. “You can reverse the changes they’ve made to me?”
“Better than that. I can regrow an entire new body for you. Then we can take that beautifully murderous mind and move it into its new home.” Lilith leaned in close enough to kiss Kain on the cheek. “How does that sound?”
“You have my attention again, Lilith. Try anything like you did with your boy back there, and they won’t be the only one who eats it.”
She pressed her lips to a small patch of skin that could still be thought of as original. Bristles of hair brushed her lips. She shuddered, though whether from delight or disgust it couldn’t be said. A bit of red was left behind on the greenish white surface. When she backed away, her smile was firmly in place. “I’ll keep that in mind. Let’s finish our little journey and we can talk about the details.”