Part 22H: The Chase, in Limbo!

OK, so nobody, not even a big tattooed crazy monster Valkyrie trapped in Limbo forever, is going to steal my left arm.

Plus I am not Rachel!

I mean, not really.

So I take off after her, or I try to, because I try to run but I can't because it's Limbo and in Limbo I can only move via my mind.  So I calm myself down because in Limbo you've got to be calm.  You'd think you would be calm there because there's really nothing in Limbo... Limbo is sort of defined by it being nothing but that's not the case.  Especially when you've just had your left arm cut off.

"COME BACK!" I yell at Rionya, but she doesn't, of course, and she's rapidly getting away.  I take a few deep breaths and I bring my heart rate down and I begin to run.

Only I don't.  I still don't move.

"What the ..." I say to myself, and go through it again.




And I don't.

Rionya is almost invisible, a speck off in the blackness, holding my left arm.

"I can do this," I tell myself.


And Rionya is there in front of me, or rather, I am in front of her, and she is running directly at me, her pupil-less eyes glaring over her shoulder until she turns and sees...? ... me just in time to realize what's going to happen but not to stop herself from barreling into me, and she hits me hard, the kind of hard that would knock the wind out of me but I've got no wind, really, in Limbo, even all those breathing exercises were merely mental, but she does tumble into me and we're tangled up, and I can see my left arm but it's in her right hand, so as I try to grab at it I'm using just my stump to grab it, and that doesn't work, plus she's got these giant breasts and they're all in my face which, yeah, exciting, but not right now

And then she's past me, scrambling up again, her centuries-maybe-or-how-long she's been living here giving her quite an edge, and she's off.

I'm laying there, and I have to start this all over.  How'd I do it just now?


And I'm in front of her again.

"RIONYA!" I yell.

She tumbles into me again and I this time grab the arm, using my only remaining hand, and she starts clawing at it trying to get it from me.

Her garbledy voice snarls at me, more growl than words, and her hair is all tangled up in my hands.  I still can't move, really, I haven't figured that out, but I have an idea.

I mentally picture...

AND YES, I am now about a hundred feet away.  Rionya is pummeling the emtpy Limbo-stuff where I was laying.  I'm standing way off to her right, and I keep quiet until she  notices where I am and gets up and comes running at me.

"Rionya, I'm not Rachel! I'm not!" but she's on me, so I have to focus, and bammo I'm somewhere else, a lot farther away, and this time I'm behind her, too.  I see her pause, far away, and stop and drop to her knees.

I hear something then, something that's not the garbled angry squawl she's been giving out.  So I listen.

Aw, crap, I realize: she's crying.

She's sobbing, on her knees, this giant deranged beautiful monster, off in the distance, and as I listen to her crying and calm down a little more I begin to get a picture.

Valkyries are telepaths, after all, and so am I because I grew up on Valhalla.

So I get this picture and this is what I see:

A woman in a chair, standing in front of a Revenant and a man in a trench coat.  They are looking into some sort of Plasma Globe, a device I recognize but haven't ever seen before.  There's only like, three in existence and that's because they require practically an entire universe's worth of power to run, but they can do a lot, including suck the power out of a universe, which is how they work, after all.

And on a view screen by the side of the woman and her cohort is Rionya, staring at them.

"Get me the hand," the woman says, "And I will free you from Limbo."

Aw, crap.

Rionya has turned around and seen me now.  But she doesn't move.

"Look," I say.  I try to broadcast it telepathically,  too, in case she's too mad to understand words anymore.

"I'm not Rachel," I tell her.

But I have an idea.

"So my hand isn't the one she wants," I add, and Rionya starts sobbing again until I say:

"But whoever that was won't know that until it's too late."

Rionya looks up at me, and I realize, crazy insane or not, she's got the gist of this.