Chapter 12 continued
When I opened my eyes again I was lying on top of the chest, arms spread out, chest bare like a school play version of a fallen hero. Petrova was standing over me, an unlikely saint, holding in her hand a glinting piece of vicious metal.
"A shard of the knife you killed." her voice was calm. She was inspecting the shard with cold curiosity. It had all kinds of sharp points all decorated by tiny bits of flesh and sharp edges covered in the rusty tones of drying blood. Petrova's nose twitched a corner of her mouth joined voicing their disgust together. "Stupid shit-head. Attacking us with a kitchen knife." she sighed and threw the bit of steel away. It flew away in a wide self-conscious arc and had the decency to sail straight over the edge of the platform into the dark depths below.
"That didn't look like a kitchen knife from where I was standing." I carefully moved my head up to see how much damage I had taken. When I saw that my whole chest was the colour of clotting blood I carefully put my head back down deciding to try a less adventurous approach.
"It looked like a combat knife. But that blade was to hard." While Petrova lectured me about knfieology I tried to wriggled my toes. They wriggled. They also reminded me that my spine was on the other side of my chest.
"Strike anything hard with to much force and it'll break." she continued. I tried my fingers next. Worked fine. "But aren't people mostly soft?"
"People can be soft. But attack a prone target with force, they evade the strike and you hit the floor. With shit like that" she pointed with her thumb in the direction she had thrown the scrap, "it'll break. You'll be terribly embarrassed followed by death."
I moved my arms a bit. They too seemed fine but the motion sent a sharp pain
through my chest. I grimaced. Petrova ignored it, to furious about our inept would-be muggers. "Or imagine some idiot shoots your knife with a mass accelerator round. Then it explodes into dozens of shards and skewers your stupid face."
"You are right, I hope that the next people who attack us are better prepared and use better equipment. I mean if things continue like this they will never kill me and I will get to live forever."
Petrova looked down at me and shook her head smiling. "You are to hard on your self. You did well. You might even have survived without my help this time."
"Thanks?" I returned her half a smile. "Talking about survival. How bad is it?"
She looked down, looked at my wound. She did not look very impressed. "Not bad.
You where lucky. It is just a flesh wound. The shard was stopped by a rib. I will hurt a bit and we will have to sew the wound properly later. But that can wait."
"OK. So we are good too... wait... What do you mean with 'sew the wound properly'?"
She shrugged. "What I said you will need some stitches."
"And it is not important to do it now because...?"
"I closed the wound for now?"
I closed my eyes again. I was sure that I did not want to know. But I asked anyway. "What did you do?"
"I used a pin. I used it to close the hole instead of thread. It'll hold for now."
I opened my eye again a deep sigh escaping my lips. I sat up. It hurt a bit. I was a bit dizzy. Apart from that I felt OK. I looked down again. Knowing what to expect it looked not as bad any more. It was mostly blood covering my skin, there was only a small red zig zag of a wound like a mouth of a grumpy stick-figure held closed by a pin. With a pink head no less.
"Pink?" I asked?
Petrova shrugged "I'm a girl I need no excuses to like pink."
The stairway down towards the harbour was an incredibly wide spiral stair case designed by someone who obviously thought that there was no place more exciting than a storm drain. This stair was ready to take the endless masses of sewer aficionados from all the Solar system. I was quite happy about that the entire staircase was covered by a blanket of moribund slimy algae, it looked like a vegan god had puked all over it.
"Had it to be pink?"
"Do you think I have a secret pin collection with choosing pink only to annoy you?"
We continued down the slippery stairs in silence.
I only got to see the fabled port after we had gone past the final bend of the stairs. I could have probably seen it from a few bends further up but I was to busy not slipping to look at anything but the path right in front of me. The port was a bit of a disappointment. But that was made up by the strangest of ships I had ever seen in my life.