Running Delta Green: Black Winter, part 2

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Sue Savage

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The crab man was dead, and in an aquarium it wasn't too hard to dispose of the remains. There was still time for a bit of science though. Bones examined the remains, and noted that the creature's legs were quite spindly compared to the rest of it, and might be more prone to damage. He also attempted to determine sex, but concluded that he really didn't know the sexual dimorphism of mutant crab people. The creature was reclassified from crab man to crab person. There was something disturbingly human about the creature's form, however, and searching the remains located an amalgam filling lodged in its mouth.

They still had the two sleeping men in their foamy cocoons. Avocado suggested attaching one of the radio trackers the aquarium used on seals to one of them and sending him out to sea to see what happened, but Hernandez wasn't entirely happy with what he saw as basically human sacrifice, and in the end they decided to take them both to the medical centre.

The first one woke up easily enough, thrashed about briefly, and raved about a dark watery void and the thing waiting in the ocean. Bones got samples off both of them to run through the testing kits. The second woke up in a similar state, but once they had both calmed down a bit, Avocado was able to get some information out of them. Both were overweight, and had put more weight on recently. Neither of them had eaten anything out of the ordinary recently, but both said it had seemed like a good idea to eat a lot.

It was starting to get light, and the medical centre staff were arriving. Bones took the opportunity to get his arm seen to, making up an excuse for the wound. None of the team had had any sleep. Once they were away from the medical centre, Crusty handed out meth.

Crusty wanted to pay another visit to the dam. Hernandez drove him back upstream, and he talked to the chief engineer, and learned it was going to take at least a month before they were going to get the dam in anything resembling working order and the turbines back on.

Bones checked the completed tests on Steve and Jeff. Both negative for whatever it was the test was for. He also serruptitiously tested himself, given how badly the crab man had wounded him.

Avocado had a theory. Something was causing people to eat more to fatten them up for use as food. The three people who'd been attacked rather than disappearing had all been rather more athletic than the typical resident of Bear Point. He decided to have another talk with them.

The two women chatted happily enough. They mentioned that they sometimes got accused of being lesbians because they chose to share a house. They weren't, but they weren't going to let homophobia stop them living together. James mentioned that people thought he was a bit weird for living on the edge of town and had tried to persuade him to move to the centre, but he liked it out there, and his house was one of the few that wasn't flooded, so who was laughing now?

Hernandez dropped off Crusty with the others, but not long afterwards radioed them to let them know a shipping container of supplies had come in, and he thought it might have a false back because it seemed to be smaller on the inside. This must be the equipment that Agent Pakrati had promised them.

Buzz's knowledge of physics and engineering confirmed that there was a false back, and where the door release mechanism was likely to be. Avocado soon had it open and they passed around the weapons inside. Struggling to use a shotgun since the previous night's injury, Bones took the submachine gun, while Crusty took ownership of the grenade launcher.

They needed a plan. The idea that the crab person they'd killed was the only one seemed too good to be true. Hernandez was unhappy with some of the initial plans, which tended towards the 'nuke it from orbit, it's the only way to be sure' end of the scale, but finally they came up with something. The turbines were out of action, and the town was depending on diesel generators for power. New supplies had just come in on the container, and the diesel was being held at the airport for distribution. If they could destroy the diesel dump, they could simultaneously cut off power to the town, making it easier to force an evactuation, and also cause an environmental disaster that probably wouldn't go well for the crab people.

Actually destroying the diesel dump proved something of a challenge. Hernandez suggested getting one of the army engineers from the dam to help, but they didn't want anyone else knowing what was really going on. In the end they waited until nightfall and then deployed Buzz, who had some past experience with artillery, and Crusty, who didn't want to relinquish control of the grenade launcher. There were a few practices with tear gas grenades before switching to explosives. It took a few attempts, but at last the town's entire diesel supply was spreading across the bay while a cloud of tear gas blew towards town.

Then wading through the water came an angry, slightly oily, crab person. Slightly different to the one they'd seen before, with extra legs, huge pincers for hands, and a long tail with a barbed end. Everyone piled back into the Zodiac, and at Crusty's instruction, Hernandez drove it straight at the creature. Avocado and Buzz fired at it, and then the boat smashed into it, bouncing off and throwing everyone around. As Bones fired, the creature snapped its pincers at him, but missed.

Crusty threw a grenade that merely exploded a small column of water. Avocado and Buzz kept firing their shotguns. Bones sprayed bullets from the submachine gun. The creature reached out with its pincers again, this time grabbing hold of Bones and jabbing him with its barbed tail.

But Crusty's grenade finally landed exactly where he wanted it. The explosion right underneath the crab person's body ripped it apart. Bones was dropped into the freezing water, the shock almost knocking him unconscious, but he managed to hold it together long enough for Hernandez to grab him and haul him back into the boat.

They went straight back to the medical centre to get Bones treated for hypothermia. They had decided to blame the fuel explosion and gas cloud on a terrorist attack, and Crusty took up the task of convincing the town that the only option at this point was to evacuate on the supply ship. A tough job, faced with stubborn Alaskans, but combined with the fact they were about to lose power, the environmental disaster meaning they were also going to struggle for food, and Alice at the aquarium being absolutely determined to get her sea otters to safety, they were eventually persuaded and the evacuation began.

The town was duly abandoned, and the agents were able to make their way back to Anchorage, and from there back home. Bones tipped off Delta Green about the three positive tests. He said nothing about the wound he'd taken on his torso that looked very similar to the ones on the three attack victims. Or about the second test he'd administered on himself. The one that came back positive.

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