“It should be me going into that fight,” Farah said.
“It’s fine,” Paul sighed. “Either way, it’s going according to plan.”
“Yes, but I’m a better fighter than you,” Farah said. “I don’t want to see you get the hell beaten out of you.”
“Lucas and I will fix him up after we’re rescued,” Angela said.
“Totally,” Lucas agreed.
“Okay,” Farah sighed. “Just fight defensively. You just have to hold out until Meiling is ready.”
“Get your ass over here, Tough guy!” Gn’iol demanded. “It’s time.”
Farah checked her surroundings while Paul complied. There were two guards at the door and one wandering around the back. The rest of the terrorists were on the left and right of Gn’iol, eager to watch the fight.
Farah handed Wolfgang to Lucas. She took his collar off. “Hold him tightly,” she said. “He’s going to try to jump out of your arms and protect Paul. And a little dog like him could get hurt very badly.”
“What about you?” Lucas asked.
“Should be obvious,” Farah said. “Once the enemies around them are stunned, I’ll go in there and get Gn’iol away from Paul. The guards at the door should be easily enough to deal with for anyone charging in. The one at the back is the problem.”
“I’ll take care of him,” Angela said. “Mei, we’re counting on you.”
“Don’t worry,” Meiling said. “I’ve got it.”
“Better be ready, Doctor,” Gn’iol said.
“You enjoy inflicting pain,” Paul observed. “Have you considered that suppressing your baser instincts might be a good way to showcase your strength?”
Gn’iol immediately threw a punch. His fist stopped just short of Paul’s face. “I can if I try, Doctor. Don’t try my patience. I’ll even be nice enough to give you the first punch.”
“Hmmm,” where should I hit?” Paul asked, making a fist.
“Stop stalling or I’ll take it back,” Gn’iol warned. “You have ten seconds.”
Paul waited eight before taking a jab directly at Gn’iol’s neck. It was clumsy but the pacifican let it hit.
“Not bad,” he coughed. “You have some muscle on you.” He backhanded Paul across the face, sending him reeling. “But not nearly enough.”
Gn’iol went into a combination of hits. By his standards, it was a leisurely series of punches and kicks. But he was a warrior by nature. For Paul, blocking all of them was impossible and he took quite a few blows.
“That all your convictions are good for?” Gn’iol asked. “You’re quite pathetic. Can’t even throw a proper punch. Fight back!”
“We all fight in our own way,” Paul said.
He was hoping the statement would confuse Gn’iol into demanding an explanation, thereby giving him a chance to stall for time. Instead, it made the pacifican angry.
He grabbed Paul’s head and slammed it into his knee. He followed that up with a kick to the Doctor’s gut.
“That sounded nasty,” Kat winced.
“I’m going to fucking kill that Bastard when we get in there,” Leon spoke coldly through gritted teeth.
“It is not helpful to become agitated,” Yuri cautioned. “It may very well affect your judgement considerably.”
Alexandria put a hand on Yuri’s shoulder. “He’s not going to listen. Right now, the only thing that’s going to calm him is saving his love.”
Femi checked her watch. Still around eight minutes until Meiling’s estimated finish time.
Paul picked himself back up. His forehead had a bleeding abrasion. He was noticeably bruised in several places and he was breathing heavily.
“You should just lie down and give up,” Gn’iol said. “I’ll even spare one of your little friends for making it this far.”
“I’m not done yet,” Paul gasped.
“Oh, really?” Gniol asked. He grabbed Paul’s right arm with both hands and twisted it into an awkward angle. The Doctor cried out in pain. “How about now?”
Paul cradled his broken arm. “I’m… still in this.”
Gn’iol jabbed two fingers into Paul’s left eye, eliciting another scream. The pacifican licked his fingers clean of eye tissue. “Good. Breaking you is going to be a real joy, Doctor.”
Paul looked him over with his good eye. “You… can knock me out… You can hurt me… badly… You can even… torture me… But break me? That might be… too much.”
The pacifican grinned. “We’ll see about that, Doctor.”