Harry kicked off his shoes the same time as Moriarity did and they ran across the short space from the hatch to the emergency boat tied to the side of the main cabin. They never reached it. A huge giant of a man walked from behind it and faced them, a sword in each hand.
"You'll have to pass me to go further."
Moriarity smiled. "We were just out for a stroll, weren't we, Harry?"
The huge man gave Moriarity a strange look.
Harry, who had his left fist behind his back, made several arcane gestures, and wove power into a knot of energy about his fist.
"Surely, you don't expect us to stay down in those cramped quarters like bilge rats, do you?" Moriarity explained.
The huge man wrinkled his nose. "You smell like them!"
Harry cast his fist around and shouted. "Be gone!"
The huge man staggered a man, as if struck by something, then a huge grin crossed his face. "Magic, hey? I was warned you might try that." He grinned, revealing teeth sharpened to points, then touched his jacket where a strange shape was drawn on it.
"Harry?" Moriarity shot.
Moriarity turned his back on the huge man to face Harry. The huge man hadn't expected that. He wavered for a moment. Harry cast his fist at Moriarity. "Be gone!"
Moriarity slammed across the deck like a rocket and struck the huge man. He slammed into the deck rail, breaking it aside, his body fracturing as he launched into the air, with Moriarity close behind him.
Harry ran over and caught Moriarity by an outstretched hand and with great effort swung him up and over the broken railing to the safety of the vessel.
But too late for surprise now. The scream of the broken sailor and the yells had stirred the ship to life. The sailor in the crow's nest was scrambling down with a knife in his mouth, and others were spilling up from below, swords and knives at the ready.
"They don't look like zombies." Harry noted.
"Not all zombies have to be persuaded to be that way." Moriarity explained, then shoved Harry overboard.
Harry gave him a look of utter surprise, then twisted himself around so he could cut the cold waters smoothly. He struck the waves, and went under several feet. As he surfaced he saw something large tumble over the edge towards him.
He ducked beneath the water again and swam under the dropped emergency boat and was given a hand up by Moriarity, who had a look of utter joy on his face. Harry couldn't understand why until he looked up and saw some smoke begin to rise from where the railing had been broken by his magic.
"I had a few matches left on me."
"What kind of matches could do that?" Harry gasped, spitting water out as he did so.
Moriarity smiled enigmatically. "Not all of us are destitute of magic, Harry. Some of us are just waiting for the right moment to use it."
With that he stood up in the boat, nearly capsizing them and flung his hands up to cast a spell of rebuffal as several knives hurtled towards them. They struck the shield of magic and spun safely into the water.
The Mummy creature came to the side, its fiery red eyes casting a look of pure malevolence towards them. Then it raised a tentacled hand with an odd shaped weapon in it. It began to glow at its barrel.
"Oh bloody hell!" Harry cursed. "We're all going to die!"
Then the bridge of the ship exploded as first one, then another cannon shell struck it, then the main deck. The ship buckled from the blows, then more shells began to strike. In moments it was burning like a raging inferno.
Harry and Moriarity looked behind them and saw an approaching pirate ship, a bloody red skull and crossbones rising on its main mast.
"From the pan into the fire." Moriarity hissed.
"Never a dull day in the life of villains, is there, Moriarity?"
"Never." He replied, a slight smile touching his lips. "Never at all."
Sherlock stood at the spot where the original battle with the warship and Mummy creature had been, his hands clasped behind his back. He was deep in thought, but no so deep that he didn't turn and speak as Lord Graystone, the Jungle Lord, stepped into view, his bronzed face stern and lit with fury.
"You have something, I assume, Lord Graystone?"
Lord Graystone stepped closer, then threw Sherlock over his shoulder and turned around and leaped into the air as lightly and easily as if Sherlock were a child.
They landed on the nearest rooftop and then Lord Graystone began running for the next rooftop, then leaped. It was a distance of nearly ten yards.
For the first time in a long time Sherlock wondered if he was going to live.
Lady Shareen and Mrs. Hudson climbed from the Lady's personal Tesla and struck along the shoveled path to the entrance of Edison and Tesla's warehouse. A guard met them at the front door.
Lady Shareen eyed him thoughtfully. "You don't know who I am?"
"My lady, I don't know who any...any one is anymore?" He replied firmly.
She laughed, then reached into her purse.
He backed up hastily, then she pulled out her passport and handed it towards him. "I am the Lady Shareen, first cousin to Lord Cutherbome and niece of Professor Challenger. I suspect you know at least one of them."
He took the passport, eyed the photo, then her and stepped to one of the new Edison phones that was being tested. It was the size of a small book, with a box where his lips spoke and another box where his ear was. He put it to his ear. "Sir, there's a lady down here wanting to see you."
Lady Shareen turned to Mrs. Hudson. "I remember a time when anyone could walk in here without a word."
"Times change." Mrs. Hudson replied, her face weary with fatigue and worry.
Lady Shareen put a hand on her arm and squeezed it warmly. "He's going to be fine. Trust me. My intuition is never wrong."
"I pray you're right. For quite honestly, if something were to happen to John, I'd...I'd..."
She burst into tears.
Lady Shareen pulled her close and hugged her tight.
Tesla appeared at the entrance, saw what was going on and nodded to the guard, who fell back, but didn't leave the entrance entirely. He kept his eyes sweeping across the parking lot and the environment, searching. For he no longer felt safe anymore. None of them did since the attack.
"Lady Shareen!" He announced, stepping into view, reaching his hand out. "Mrs. Hudson! It is such a delight to have you both come."
Mrs. Hudson pulled free and sniffled.
Tesla whipped a hanky from his vest coat and handed it to her.
She blew into it and started to hand it back.
"Keep it. I have more where that came from." He said with a gracious and warm smile.
He slipped a hand about Mrs. Hudson's shoulders, then around Lady Shareen's. "I think we have much to talk about, we three."
Then he let go and they followed him inside.
When they reached his private offices, they entered and Mrs. Hudson gave Madame Curie a look of surprise. She was hugging Inspector Bloodstone with Constable Evans standing beside t hem, a big smile on his face.
"You see, Mrs. Hudson. We've made a bit of progress since last we met."
Inspector Bloodstone rushed over to take her hands. "I am so, so sorry for what has transpired, and I tell you now, by every cell in my body I swear this. We will find Watson and recover him safely."
Constable Evans turned to Madame Curie. "Will this work for the more advanced cases, like the men in our constabulary?"
"Only one way to find out, isn't there?"
Tesla watched as Constable Evans helped Madame Tesla gather up some devices he and Edison with her help had constructed, then head for them.
"What is happening?" Lady Shareen inquired, a bit confused at the goings on.
Inspector Bloodstone's face grew as cold as ice, his eyes mere pinpricks of flaming anger and disgust. "We are taking this battle to the streets. I'll not see one more man, woman or child fall to this deadly infection. And then..."
"And then what?" Mrs. Hudson demanded.
He looked at her, his face filled with fury. "We shall destroy every last one of those monsters and send them back to the hell they came from!"
John Pirillo"Writing fuels the heart and soul!" Science Fiction, Fantasy and Adventure Tales to Take Your Breath Away!