Army of Devils, стр. 18

Standing to the side of the roof door, he raised his AK. The first punk out the door took a through-and-through head wound from a Com-Bloc slug. Still screaming, he fell and kicked as his life spurted from his shattered skull.

A second punk ran from the stairwell as the grenade exploded below. Though the stairs and landing shielded the punk's body, steel fragments punched through the back of his head.

As if he did not feel the wounds, the punk continued advancing, streams of blood fountaining from his skull. Blancanales aimed at the punk's back and put a careful burst through the wounded punk's heart. Still screaming, with a vast wound where his heart had been, the punk continued on to the end of the roof. He hurtled into space.

From the stairwell they heard a bestial, inhuman sound. A sound like a dog's growl, but broken with gasps and choking. They saw a hand clutching a Kalashnikov, then the third punk crawled from the stairwell.

A hundred grenade fragments had shattered and ripped both legs. Dangling by only ligaments and a few strands of flesh, the legs flopped and twisted behind the punk. But obviously he did not feel the horrible wounds.

Clawing at the asphalt of the roof, he looked around for the attackers. Blancanales dispatched him to darkness with a burst to the back of his head.

The autofire from below slacked off. Absolutely astounded by what he had seen, Gadgets stared down at the finally dead teenager. Then the ex-Green Beret turned to Lyons.

"I'm not going down there. I don't care what the fuck you say, Lyons. Call down an airstrike, call for tanks, call for the Marines, but I'm not going down there!"

Blancanales changed mags on his captured AK. "Second the motion. Motion carried. We retreat. Period. Follow me."

"All right, all right," Lyons finally agreed. He took his hand-radio from his belt. "I need my Atchisson, anyway. Flor," he said into his hand-radio, "we got some heavy action here. We need our weapons."

In the alley behind the apartments, skidding tires answered his call.

"Now that's a quick response," Gadgets commented.

"Go!" Lyons shouted to his partners. "I'll cover."

Gadgets and Blancanales, both holding captured autoweapons, dashed to the corpse spanning the wire. They jumped through the gap, then took positions to cover Lyons.

Sporadic autofire came from the stairwell. Lyons held his fire. He stuck a finger through the ring of the second grenade, then stopped.

He reached into the stairwell housing and grabbed one of the dead punks. He jerked the corpse out of the doorway, then slammed the door closed. He pushed the corpse against the door to hold it closed.

He devised a booby trap. He jerked the pin from the grenade and put the grenade between the corpse holding the door closed and the door itself. When the punks shoved the door open, the grenade would explode, maiming or killing the nearest pursuers, perhaps killing a few on the stairs.

Lyons grinned sardonically at a thought. Can't chase if they got no legs.

"Ironman!" Gadgets called out. "Move it! Flor says there's action in the alley."

The boom of a .45 spurred Lyons. A loaded AK in each hand, he ran for the corpse-bridge through the razor wire. The .45 boomed twice again. Autofire from an M-16 answered. A final shot from Flor's Detonics .45 silenced the Colt rifle.

Hurtling the gap, steel razors slashing one leg, Lyons passed Blancanales and Gadgets. He ran to the edge of the roof and looked down.

The rented Ford spun rubber, fishtailing through the alley. The car lurched as it thumped over a corpse, then raced away. Autofire — this time from a Kalashnikov — popped from the doorways beneath Lyons. The glass of the Ford's rear windshield shattered.

Skidding around the corner, the Ford disappeared from his sight. He jerked his hand-radio from his belt. Gadgets's shout stopped him.

"She's around the corner. Waiting for us. So let's move it!"

The grenade booby trap exploded. Lyons followed Gadgets and Blancanales over the roofs.

Hearing the screams of the berserk punks, Lyons looked back. He saw a horror.

A punk pursued them. Lurching from side to side, moving oddly, the punk seemed to be only four feet tall. Then Lyons realized what he saw. The punk had lost both legs at the knees. Yet he did not fall. The punk continued forward, running on the stumps of his legs, an autorifle gripped in his hands.

Lyons carefully lined up the Kalashnikov's night-sight dots on the maimed, drug-enraged monster and shot the top of its head away.

Others came. Shrieking and screaming, they tried to thrash through the razor wire. The steel points slashed them but they did not notice. One of the punks found the gap and called out to the others.

Lyons fired again. He saw the guy's head explode. Then Lyons sprinted after his partners.

Gadgets covered the roof with his Uzi as Blancanales went down the fire escape. Lyons looked at the 9mm submachine gun in Gadgets's hands and shook his head.

"Forget that little popgun. Just go. I'll do what lean."

With a quick salute, Gadgets followed Blancanales. Lyons turned to the advancing gang. He took cover behind a fan housing. Easing the Kalashnikov's fire-selector lever to semiautomatic, he lined up the AK's glowing dots on the screaming mouth of a punk. The 7.62mm ComBloc slug punched through the mouth to explode the brain-stem. The punk dropped instantly.

Lyons methodically executed the next three punks. The drug gave them superhuman strength and rage but made them stupid. They did not take cover or advance in fire-teams. They only rushed at Lyons. And he killed them.

Snapping the magazine out of his second captured AK — the autorifle had no night sights — he shoved the magazine in his coat pocket. He slung the AK with night sights over his shoulder and ran to the ladder.

Without any attempt at silence, Lyons descended. He called out to his partners. "On my way down!"

A truck engine revved. Gears shifted. Lyons looked down as a five-ton truck marked LAYAC Farm Fresh Produce came from a garage. The truck gained speed. An autorifle extended from the passenger-side window, spraying fire wildly at the alley's shadows. Blancanales and Gadgets returned fire.

The truck swerved and bumped onto the side street where Flor waited. Lyons heard more auto-fire. Then the sound of the truck's engine faded.

Continuing to the alley, Lyons ran to where Flor waited. With Blancanales and Gadgets only a few steps behind him, Lyons jerked open the Ford's passenger front door.

"That truck, we got to..."

But no one waited in the driver's seat. Lyons looked into the front seat, called out, "Where's Flor?" Panic rose in his throat.

He scanned the street. He saw a door close. The muzzle of a Kalashnikov smashed through a window and fire flashed. Even as he returned fire, Lyons screamed out, "There! They took her in there!"

Fear and reason left Lyons's mind.


As the truck hurtled through the streets of East Los Angeles, Abdul Shabaka plotted his next move. The LAYAC produce truck carried all his audiovisual equipment and his entire library of hate films that documented the history of white crimes against blacks and Indians and other non-whites. The film projectors, stereos, audio mixers and video machines would help establish another indoctrination center for young psychopaths and criminals in another city, away from here.

First, he and his squad of personal bodyguards would take shelter in the warehouse he had rented the year before. He'd never put his faith in the LAYAC organization. He only trusted himself. Therefore he had prepared for the day when LAYAC collapsed. He had rented the warehouse, he had modified the building to provide security and defense and had hidden weapons and ammunition inside the building.