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Thrilling Tales of the Downright Unusual
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Enlarge: Space pirates, ray guns, and tentacles

Her legs were clamped around Tentacle Number One. Bonnie didn't worry much about that one. Tentacle Number Two was headed her way like a striking snake. She reached overhead, grabbed the fire escape with both hands, and pulled herself - and Tentacle Number One - upwards. Tentacle Number Two bashed savagely into Tentacle Number One, which, unfortunately, didn't seem to mind. Tentacle The First rebounded like rubber and Bonnie found herself stretched between her hands, on the bouncing fire escape, and her legs, wrapped around the writhing tentacle, which left the rest of her hanging over a long drop to the street below. Tentacle Number Two coiled itself for a rematch.

Bonnie let go with her hands. Her left hand dropped and got a hold on Tentacle Number One as with her right she pulled out her pistol. Bonnie took aim at Tentacle Number Two and fired: it looked startled, as far as she could tell, and withdrew through the window. The last of the Hoteliers etc. had made their way past the window by then so Bonnie started to look around for her exit.

When Tentacle Number Two came back through the window, it didn't come alone: Bonnie saw at once that she wasn't going to be numbering them anymore. Smack dab in the middle of the waving arms there was something that might, until recently, have been human. It was still dressed in a lab coat.

The creature clambered out onto the tortured fire escape which was shaking itself loose from its mounts on the wall. Since she'd lost her grip on the railing Bonnie couldn't keep Tentacle Number One from reeling her in to where the rest of them were waiting for her.

She stole a glance below. The Hoteliers etc. were dropping from the fire escape into the street. Bonnie approved. That was when one of the tentacles slapped Bonnie's pistol right out of her han

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