The Title

by David Caldwell

When Shiva Starts to Dance: Part 07.

Old enemy, new friends

The ESPER unit emitted a signal rousing him from a profound sleep. Without getting out of his chair he asked the ESPER to identify the cause of the signal. The computer informed him that files on Rick Deckard the former Blade Runner had been accessed. His surprise at this caused him to sit up. He had assumed that Deckard and his skinjob girlfriend had passed out of his jurisdiction long ago and he had forgotten the tag he had placed on these files.

His fingers unconsciously manipulated a cigarette paper deftly folding it into the shape of a perfect, tiny unicorn as the ESPER tracked the source of the access and forwarded it to the on-board of his Spinner. Placing the origami unicorn in his coat pocket he picked up his cane and limped towards the elevator.

Rick Deckard disengaged his limbs from those of the still sleeping replicant lying in the bed beside him. The power had come back on as they slept, the temperature in the bedroom warm against his naked skin as he moved from under the covers and stood up.

He walked through the apartment towards the kitchen having stepped over the replicant tiger asleep in front of the bedroom door. As he entered the kitchen and the automatic light flickered on Rick felt a powerful arm grasp him around his throat choking the breath from him. Before he could react he was pushed face first to the floor, a body's weight settling on his lower back, the pressure on his windpipe increasing. As he fought to shake off his incredibly strong attacker he could see the booted feet of a woman move in front of him.

"Don't kill him Rolf," a woman's voice spoke calmly, "we need him to talk".
"Yes Rolf, don't kill him." Rick recognised Michael's voice.

His assailant's grip relaxed allowing Rick to collapse to the floor, sucking in breath, the weight lifting from his back.

"Michael! We thought he'd retired you," the woman said. "Taffey told us you left the club with a Blade Runner. We haven't seen or heard from you for three days."

Deckard felt Michael's powerful hands turning him over and then as if he weighed nothing picking him up and carrying him from the kitchen. Rick opened his eyes as Michael laid him on the bed and pulled the covers over his naked body.

"Michael what's happening, who are they?"
"They're friends Rick, replicants. They don't know about you, they think you're still Blade Runner. I'll talk to them, you stay here and rest." Michael leant down and hungrily kissed Rick's mouth.

Rick had slept again. When he awoke he could hear voices coming from the living room. He got out of bed and pulled on clothes he found in a cupboard. They were Michael's and large on him but he felt better being dressed.

He entered the living room unnoticed, Michael and the other two replicants were standing in front of the ESPER with their backs to him. He stood just inside the doorway. Kali the tiger lay in the corner; she looked up at Deckard's entrance and growled softly, her heavy tail lashing from side to side.

Michael and the other two turned around.
Michael smiled "Good you're awake Rick. Let me introduce Opal."

Rick looked from Michael to the tall woman standing to his right. She had a dark golden complexion with fine features and short cropped blonde hair. She was dressed in a tight fitting, black vinyl combat suit with metal clasps from her throat to her crotch. She wore a shoulder holster and had, Rick noticed, drawn a fine bladed knife as she had spun around. She replaced it in the scabbard strapped to her thigh, staring silently at Rick.

"And this is Rolf," Michael said placing a hand on the shoulder of the dark haired young man standing beside him. Rick drew his gaze away from Opal and turned to face the other replicant. Rick heard himself gasp, as he looked at the most beautiful man's face he had ever seen. Rolf's eyes were violet, defined by thick dark lashes and crowned by elegantly curving brows. His finely proportioned nose led you from the startling eyes down to a full curved mouth which itself sat above a firm, cleft chin.

Rolf was not as tall as Michael or Opal but his large frame confirmed the strength, which Rick had experienced earlier. He was dressed in black as well. He smiled, moving forward and enveloped Rick in a powerful hug, thrusting his tongue between Rick's lips and kissing him deeply. Rick could feel Rolf's hands moving over his back and butt, stroking and squeezing.

As Rick felt he was about to pass out for lack of air Rolf withdrew his mouth and released him from the crushing embrace.

Michael laughed "Rolf was created as a pleasure model for Off-World marine bases and sometimes finds it difficult to resist his original programming."

The dark haired beauty smiled.

Rick looked from the man to Opal, "And what were you programmed for?"
"Killing, just like you," she replied in a deep voice locking her eyes on Deckard's.
"Opal was a purpose created assassin," Michael explained, "of course she has expanded her skills base since then. In fact we have all exceeded our original design parameters, including you."

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