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Fandom: Blake's 7
Title: Things That Go Bump in the Night
Rating: Australian G
Disclaimer: The characters and universe of Blake's 7 are property of the estate of Terry Nation and are used here without permission. No money is being solicited for or made from this work of fan fiction.
Author's Note: This was the result of another Blake's 7 Friday challenge. The phrase given as the starter was "things that go bump in the night" (it being the week before Halloween, 2005). I let the phrase simmer, and this is what came out.

Things that go bump in the night...

Vila startled out of sleep, panicked and uncertain. He looked around, trying to figure out why he wasn't in his cabin on Liberator. Memory downed a cup of coffee before reminding him he'd been sent to crack a safe. He relaxed, looking at where Tarrant was sleeping. Avon had declared the youngster his minder.

Maybe it was a dream which had woken him. He prodded at his memory to figure why he was so worried. Memory told him he'd been awoken by a noise. A bump, to be exact.

The recall made him twitch, looking around himself, eyes wide, trying to figure out what might have made the noise. He couldn't see anything. He fumbled for his gun.

His gun wasn't where he'd left it.

He knew he didn't move much in his sleep (a habit learned in a juvenile detention ward); he couldn't have moved it himself. He swallowed to ease the dryness in his throat and mouth. He wanted to switch on the light, but that would wake up Tarrant. The younger man wouldn't be polite about being woken unexpectedly.

He strained his eyes in the darkness, trying to distinguish whether there was something else in the room with them. Maybe he was just imagining it.

There it was again!

Something else was in the room. Probably some horrible hairy alien, come to eat him alive, devour his brain, or suck all the blood from his body. He shuddered. Another thought occurred to him. Maybe it was after Tarrant?

Part of him was relieved by the thought - if the horrible whatever-it-was ate Tarrant, at least it wouldn't be eating him. But other thoughts crowded in, thoughts of what the others would say if he came back alone. Dayna would want to kill him, Cally would be furious, and Avon - well, Avon wouldn't kill him. That would be too quick. No, Avon would find one thousand and one different stinky, messy, horrible jobs for Vila to do, ensuring they were all done and done over to Avon's over-finicky satisfaction. Not because Avon happened to like Tarrant (he did) but because Tarrant was useful to Avon. Vila swore inside his head. He'd have to be heroic and rescue Tarrant.

Oh help! It was on his bed. He could feel it. He was going to be eaten up by a huge hairy alien; there was nothing he could do. Tarrant wasn't stirring. Hmph. Serve him right, Vila thought, if this thing eats me alive, and he doesn't move a muscle.

Maybe he couldn't? Maybe Tarrant was unable to reach for his gun. Maybe he was already dead.

The whatever-it-was was still creeping up his bed. It was making a noise, a rumbling, snarly noise. It was getting closer. Then it stopped. Just near where his stomach was. Vila tried hard to suppress the memory of that "classic" vid he'd watched when he was small. The one with horrible alien things bursting out of peoples' bodies. He had images of something leaping onto his face, leaving him near-dead, planting some horrible seed inside his body, to erupt out a day or so later and devour the crew of the Liberator.

It was no good. He had to see whatever it was. He had to know how he was going to die. He reached out for the torch, and in the process scattered his tools.

The clatter woke Tarrant; the torch beam caught the retreating form of a ginger cat.

Vila sighed. Why did these things always happen to him?

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