Short As Fictober #21: “Pattern”

An 8-bit symphony warms up before launching into the overture to begin the final stage. Boscoe sighs, and wipes the sweat from under his hat band with a gloved hand. He nearly has the pattern down, and it’s a good thing he does. 

He’s on his last life, indicated by the little ā› x 1 floating overhead. This is his third batch of lives as well, so once those pickaxes tumble to zero, he’s done for keeps. Game over, Boscoe.

Two power-ups left–Goliath Fists and a Grilled-Cheese Health Boost–but Boscoe knows he can’t afford to play it safe and use them too early. He’ll need those in the second half of the stage when the calamity becomes relentless.

Though it’s meant dying eight times, Boscoe has the pattern pegged as: a four-pack combo of low and high fireballs; a six-deep field of radioactive zombies which will respawn (he came by the piece of information the hard way when he went back for a flying power-up); alternating spike chasms and smasher columns; another round of low and high fireballs; a Garbage Golem flanked by radioactive zombies (this is where the Goliath fists will be useful); again with the spike chasms and smasher columns; and at the end a levitating flame wizard. All of this while being chased by a cascading wall of death sludge.

The beeps and boops of the symphony reach their crescendo, and Boscoe hits start. 

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