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 Synopsis[]

Transcript[]

A grey canopy of fog gave way to the brilliant Scurlian dawn: four suns rising as one, reminding Bodega of the time he almost got run over by a recreational hover vehicle on Platos IV. He slipped his sunglasses into position over his eyes and squinted down the sights of his LasGun back towards his Gretham stealth insertion shuttle. Nobody mooching about nearby, so he felt secure enough in his position.

With the sun at his back, he'd learnt this trick in the sniper school where he'd graduated top of his class and all other classes in the history of that sniper school and all other sniper schools, he settled into the loose soil of his hilltop vantage point and checked the LasGun pivot bipod once more. The action was as smooth as a slemhound's udder.

With the pivot bipod deployed, he'd be able to wreak a terrible revenge on the bastard smugglers down in the valley. There they were now, drinking cups of synth tea and smoking their star vapes. Vaping had been outlawed by the evil federation director Kremm Slumdub, but those kabrones obviously felt the law didn't extend to them.

Bodega laughed to himself. Hell, he loved a good vape too! Bodega wanted to vape really, really badly, but it might give away his position since he was using an advanced mega-vape capable of blanketing a small moon in delicious vape smoke.

Enough about vaping, thought Bodega.

The smugglers were gathered around a collection of small remote-controlled vehicles. Through the vision-scope attachment of his LasGun, Bodega could practically smell the scum from here. Whatever they planned to do with those RC vehicles, it was gonna be related somehow to their smuggling activities, and it was surely gonna be a thing a bastard would do. He'd done research on these bastards before he'd taken the mission; their list of crimes was so long he'd had to take a couple of days off just to read through it and get really, really angry.

Bodega liked getting really, really angry. It focused his mind, making him sharp -- so sharp he'd come up with the idea for the pivot bipod while he was taking a crap.

Bodega's famous LasGun, known throughout the galaxy as the best of the best of the best in terms of LasGuns and one-of-a-kind, was capable of a sustained beam which, in turn, was capable of penetrating the hull of any ship he'd ever shot it at, which was a lot of ships. By definition, a human being and their stupid remote-controlled vehicles was gonna be no match. No match at all.

He grinned -- 'he' being Bodega -- and checked the pivot bipod action once more. Smoother than a hit from his mega-vape. No! No vaping, thought Bodega, firmly.

Down in the valley, the bastard scum smugglers were laughing and joking, and starting to fart around with their RC vehicles. There were ten of them, their hover vehicles parked up in a semi-circle, but they sure didn't dress like smugglers, the clever bastards; most of them had glasses on, which was weird because anybody with a hundred skrells can get eye surgery or an implant or something. Maybe it was part of their disguise? Maybe they weren't very good at smuggling and were a bit hard up when it came to cash? Bodega gave it some thought. He couldn't come up with anything. Ah well. Five minutes till their personal doomsday, anyway. What was he, an optician?

Bodega checked the action once more on the pivot bipod an instantly thought about vaping. Fa'av it! he thought and pulled out his mega-vape. He took one huge tug and exhaled, regretting it instantly. The smugglers all looked up towards the fifty-metres cubed cloud of vape billowing off the hilltop. One of them fired up an RC drone and buzzed it straight at Bodega. As it neared him, he tensed every muscle in his body, letting out a small fart as he did so -- not out of fear, but as a precaution. A fart in combat was no joke; it could really put you off! But the drone didn't open fire. It hovered nearby and a small reedy voice emitted from a speaker on the front.

'Hello, are you the park ranger? We have a permit to fly our drones as long as it's not a Sunday. Furthermore--'

Fa'av this! His position revealed and his cover blown, Bodega started putting some serious heat downrange. Target one was the pendejo controlling this thing. The famous LasGun of Bodega did its dreadful business and superheated every molecule of water in that dude's body as he exploded into a trillion fiery fragments.

Now it was time for the pivot bipod to do its work. No need to take his finger off the trigger, Bodega simply played the LasGun around the smuggler's meeting point like an old man watering some plants: a drop of water for the groubels, a dash for the chluerforths, a good soaking for the needy jub-jub tree -- although, in Bodega's case, this translated to three more smugglers shrieking in agony as they were sliced into bits by the LasGun.

He took a quick squint down the sights and noticed that many of the smugglers were crawling around and shrieking. Some were curled up into balls and were crying, and some were more desperately trying to run for cover. Zap! All of them paid the ultimate price for smuggling, which was: death by Bodega.

Job done, he packed up and headed back towards the Gretham. As he got closer, he noticed a group of men off to the south, close enough to hear their conversation. They wore black stealth suits and each carried a large bore omni-rifle. Hmm, hunting season started early this year. Bodega gave a cheery wave and a thumbs-up. The men looked bemused for a moment before waving back. Bodega climbed into the Gretham and blammed into orbit, onto his next mission.

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