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"GINGER SNAP"

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"Looks like the derelict had a stowaway that Jericho missed, and got onto this ship..."

Maverick paused to let the gunshots go off, making a mental note that Volkov took the lesson of 'being sure' very...very...seriously.

"...or if you mean why did it suddenly stop moving and just let you shoot it, that was me."

She wiggled her fingertips, waving hello.

"I cracked its security and locked it in a diagnostic loop at what might charitably be called an inopportune moment."

The black fog of her esper swarm clustered around her arms again, and vanished into the tiny ports built into them.

"I, uh, think you got it. Lets pull the brainbox and see what we can salvage."

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Volkov waited a heartbeat or three, just in case the thing was waiting for Maverick to withdraw her swarm before rising, magnetically clipping her rifle to her back as she dropped her cloak and shimmered back into full visibility. Out came the spear from her belt and a faint series of clacks presaged it's extension to it's full length. The armored redhead took a reverse grip on the polearm, ready to use it as a lever to force the zombie onto it's ruined stomach.

Before she got to that bit of physical labor though, she prodded the synth's neck with the butt of the spear as one last precaution, finally relaxing enough to speak aloud, "If this... thing has a chip like I think it does, I'd like to take it back with me when I go home. This creature and it's brood need to face Coalition justice. That okay with you?"

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Maverick shrugged.

"It's dead. Justice is served as far as I'm concerned. Though..."

She hunkered down over the 'body,' and poked at it, frowning. For a moment Anna looked back up at the nearby bulkhead, then back at the synth.

"You know, this thing didn't have a mindset, but...yeah. This plating here came from the Ginger Snap. It's the same metal."

Anna leaned forward and pulled the sensor cluster of the thing's 'head' to the left, exposing a deep set of scratches in its chassis.

"This is the same one as before. The one you said you killed. It's not a different one...it came back on, repaired itself with stuff from the ship."

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The power-armored marine froze in place, featureless visor giving nothing away as she processed the thought of hundreds of nanite-forged drones pulling themselves out of the hull like fungi if this thing had managed to kill them, leaving the ship with just enough internal workings to slam into another colony and repeat the process anew. Eventually she managed to suck in a breath and get her mental feet back under her. Damned Apostates.

"Try and finish up your examination quickly then. We're chucking this thing out an airlock at the nearest star before it repeats that trick if you don't mind," Volkov replied softly, shifting her grip on the spear so that it's shimmering bladed tip was pointed back at the murderous drone.

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"Oh I'm done. Chuck it out at your leisure. Might be good to download its memory and instructions first, but we'll need the captain's okay on that. I don't have anywhere to put that much data on me."

The ship shuddered, and Anna quickly took hold of one of the bulkheads.

"This might not be the best time to ask though."

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