Seducing Stag Page 2

“Shit,” Parqel rasped. “Good call.” He got to his feet by the head of the bed. “It’s pressure rigged on all four feet of the bed. Any weight change and I assume it will blow up. I see wires leading into the mattress, hidden by the covers on first glance.”

Kelis moved to stand next to him. “How did you know?”

Stag hesitated. “Most men would have rushed toward a sexually appealing woman. It makes sense to me why they’d leave her alive, but none of the men onboard this ship.”

Veller spoke. “We could kill gravity and float to cut her down.”

Stag shook his head. “Remove gravity and the bed would shift as well, releasing the triggers.”

“How are we going to get her down?” Kelis sounded frustrated.

“We aren’t.” Stag turned to his men. “Let’s go.”

“We can’t just leave her,” Kelis argued. “She’s alive. We can try to disarm the device.”

“Tell him what would happen, Parqel,” Stag demanded.

The other cyborg sighed. “I cut the wires and it will go off. I can’t reach the device without putting weight on the bed. We can’t even cut her from the sides and lift her down because her weight is part of the bed.”

“She was dead the moment they made her a trap.” Stag stared at the woman. He felt pity. “We’ll cut life support so there are no life signs to draw others to the freighter. It will be a painless way for her to go.”

“It’s a woman.” Kelis faced him. “We can’t just leave her to die.”

“I find this distasteful as well. But there’s no way to save her without that explosion killing us too.”

“I’ll stay behind and wait for you to leave this ship, then attempt it. That way only my life will be at risk.”

“I won’t allow you to die for a human, Kelis.”

“Damn it!” the cyborg shouted. “I must try, Stag.”

A soft sound came from the bed and Stag turned his head. The woman lifted her chin, her hair moving to reveal her generous breasts, just enough to show one perky nipple. He studied her. She had delicate, attractive features and pale blue eyes.

She seemed a bit disorientated as she blinked, focusing on him. Confusion was an easy emotion to read, but then a hint of fear showed. She glanced away from him, noticing his men. He stepped to the end of the bed, watching her.

She looked down, closed her eyes, and then opened them. “Who is in charge?” She had a soft, pleasant voice.

“I am.”

She peered directly at Stag, then to the weapon in his hand, then back to hold his gaze. “You’re cyborgs, aren’t you?”

“Yes.”

“I figured. I’ve only heard of one thing that has gray skin.” She licked her lips. “There’s an explosive device in the bed. You can’t reach me without it going off. I calculate there’s enough there to take out this entire section and probably blow a hole in the outer hull. Did any of my crew survive?”

“Your crew?”

“I’m the captain.” She seemed to notice the body on the floor and tears filled her eyes. “That’s my father. He’s dead, isn’t he?”

Stag saw no reason to lie. “Yes.”

“What were those things that boarded us? Do you know?”

“Markus Models. They are flesh-exterior androids. Do you know how many there were?”

“I saw three. I could hear someone screaming though. I think it was Melvin. He’s a few rooms down. I’ll assume he had a reason to scream. That means at least four. They looked like identical clones but they were really strong. I shot one of them twice in the chest but he just kept coming. He hit me and it was lights out until I woke while they were tearing off my clothes. I thought they were going to rape me but they strung me up instead and cut open the mattress to plant a bomb. Then they made the bed.” She glanced at the corpse on the floor. “He wasn’t in here then. One of them struck me again and I passed out…until now.”

“Your entire crew is dead. You were the only life sign.”

The pain of grief twisted up her features but she masked it fast, seeming to pull her emotions together. “Thank you for answering our distress signal and trying to come to our aid.” She opened her hands and gripped the bonds. “Can you do me a favor? Please set the auto-destruct sequence on my ship before you leave. They’re planning on coming back. We’re hauling sex bots in cargo two. The crates state it’s mining equipment but that’s what the real cargo is. They figured that out somehow. They were talking aloud when they were putting me up here. They think they can reprogram those bots to be useful to them. Blow me all to hell. I don’t want them to get a damn thing. I also don’t want to be alive when they return.”

She paused. “You can take the bots if you want but don’t let those bastards have them. Hurry, whatever you decide to do. They were out of range of communicating with someone and needed to leave the ship. I don’t think they were willing to use satellite relay. That means ship-to-ship coms only, and you know the range on those isn’t that great. My ship was too slow to make some rendezvous point they’d set up. I don’t know how long they’ve been gone.”

“Why aren’t you asking us to save you?” Stag was intrigued by her, curious.

“It’s suicide. I’m sure you have better things to do today than die. So did I, but I’m the one who got boarded. They didn’t register on our long-range sensors. Hell, we didn’t even know we’d been boarded until they were already inside and attacking us.”

“They probably hacked your computer system and overrode your sensors.” Veller frowned. “We figure they left about an hour ago.”

“Do you know who they went to meet?” Stag drew her attention by stepping closer.

“Brothers. That’s all I know. No clue who they are or what that means.”

“More Markus Models.” Kelis sighed. “They will probably return with at least one more shuttle. They destroyed your freighter. It’s not traveling anywhere. They wanted it dead in space. This ship has a large cargo capacity but it’s too slow for them. They’ll probably have to divide the cargo.”

“Check the cargo bay and make certain they didn’t leave any models behind to guard the bots.” Stag glanced at Kelis. “Transfer what you can onto our ship, destroy the rest.” He regarded Veller. “You heard her. See if you can set the auto destruct. If not, we’ll blow it when we leave. Go. Stick together in teams.”

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