Lev.DN.....Index.....Identity Crisis, page 14 (c)1996 Lee Skidmore.....Lev.UP

Then, Johnny pulled up his legs, suspending his two hundred and twenty-five pounds from his attacker's neck. The brute doubled over, lowering Johnny to the floor. As Johnny's back touched the floor, he pulled his knees in tight, then slammed his feet up into the stomach of the doubled-over muscle-man.

"Have a nice trip," said an ill-wishing Johnny as the rush with which the giant came at him was converted into a perfectly executed stomach throw. For a moment, he thought the guy might hit the ceiling in the hallway. At a respectable velocity, three hundred plus pounds of thick muscle, bone, and gristle, impacted with the hard marble floor.

"Oh, my. . .Guillaume? Guillaume! What was that? Guillaume!" yelled a deeply feminine voice from above. To the covering slap clatter of sandal shod feet on tile surfaced stairs, Johnny rolled over. On hands and knees, he crawled behind a column. Guillaume still lay stretched out on his back, unmoving.

Laurie Du Quesne arrived. Her scantily clad body jiggled up to the apparently undamaged, but unmoving form on the floor.

Johnny stifled a grin in danger of becoming a chuckle as he thought that this might not be as unpleasant as he had thought it would.

She bent over Guilliaume's still form. Puzzled, she pushed at his big, hairy chest with a thinly delicate neon-nailed hand, and said, "Guillaume? Please, what's happened to you?" She pushed again with both hands this time. Still unanswered, she stepped back, and pulled a pink heart shape from her pocket. As her heart's holo flashed up, Johnny stepped out from behind a column. He engulfed the comp in his powerful hand. Laurie Du Quesne, shocked, jerked away from his grip. She tripped backwards over Guillaume. Even though he was caught off balance himself, Johnny tried vainly to keep her from falling. Laurie fell, sprawled across Guillaume, with Johnny on top.

Awash in a storm of screams punctuated by flailing arms, and legs, Johnny tried to escape while keeping a grip on her heart-shaped vanity comp. Before he could get free he was frozen in place by a painful poke from a hollow steel finger that gouged his kidney.

"Get off her Zane or you're dead. Now, Zane. Right now," said an impossible voice.

"Just what the hell do you think I'm trying to do, you jerk," said Johnny as he rolled away from the gun and Laurie. As he came up off the floor he deflected the heavy gun's barrel with his jaw, so he sat down. The sharp pain numbed by the shock of finding Terence Du Quesne standing over him.

Lev.DN.....Index.....Identity Crisis, page 14 (c)1996 Lee Skidmore.....Lev.UP