Jo and her team successfully prevented the second invasion. Only a single enemy Scout made it to Earth, but the horror it brought makes people shiver. For Jo, it’s clear—to get ahead of another attack, she must enter hostile territory, even if there is no chance for a return journey.
My first concern was Stubble and his friends’ safety. “Stay behind us. This is not your fight.”
Despite his noticeable relief, he disagreed. “It should be our fight.”
“Not today.” Not with a Dragon Protectress present.
Before I could step toward the newcomers, though, Francine placed a hand on my arm. “My job.”
Fatima gave me a questioning glance, but I only smiled in agreement. Francine was quite capable of handling this situation and—other than Stubble’s group—these new brawlers didn’t deserve the indulgence in my eyes.
No, Jo. Even these people belong to the protected. My Analogy was right, of course.
Francine nodded and smiled. “Naturally.”
She elegantly walked toward the Zombies balancing on her high-heeled shoes. Just like me, she immediately recognized the leader based on their formation, a tall blond with gloves and a butterfly knife.
“Down with that dress,” the leader demanded. “Reveal yourself if you wanna live.”
Francine obediently lifted her left arm and reached for the zipper with her right. Then she slipped out of the strap on her shoulder. She took her time letting the dress slide over her body to the ground. Some of the men whistled. When her strip show ended, she stepped out of the dress pooled at her feet and exploded.
A few moments later, the twenty-four men were writhing on the ground in pain. Francine leaned over the leader and held his knife up to his crotch.
Fatima slowly let out her breath. “What was that?” she whispered.
“The upgrade. Francine is fast.”
“What did you just say?” Francine asked her victim.
The Zombie leader saw the naked woman above him, heard his friends’ moaning and whining and felt the steel’s sharp coldness slowly penetrate his pants. “What?”
“Did you just threaten to take my life?”
I could see her blade’s pressure increase as her victim’s tension grew.
“Yes. Okay, I threatened you. Please!”
Francine didn’t reduce the pressure. “You will never again touch a knife. And I don’t want to meet any of you ever again in a similar situation. Not in Brisbane, and nowhere else in Australia. Understood?”
“Yes. Yes! Who—what are you?”
“The woman with the knife at your balls. Now get lost.”
Francine rose and took a step back. Dressed only in her high heels and holding the Zombie leader’s knife, Francine watched the Zombies withdraw.
One tried to reach for his lost knife, then glanced at her. She slightly shook her head, and he made up his mind to run away as fast as he could without his weapon.
Once they all disappeared, Francine tossed the knife away, took her dress, dusted it, and put it on again.
“What a woman!” Stubble whispered behind me. “Damn, what I would give for…”
“Start with a beer,” I cut him before he could finish his thought.