Chapter 10: 628's Escape
Lilo had slowed to a walk. She was just admiring the beautiful sunset, when she felt something rush past her.
It then turned around, and stopped barely twelve centimetres in front of her.
“Ah, the famous experiment catcher, Lilo Pelikai. You will find that I am more than a match for you.”
And then it rushed off, faster than she could blink.
“Ooh, patooka ogeta…”
626 rubbed his head. Where was he? What was going on?
Then it all came rushing back to him.
He had been snooping through Jumba’s lab… trying to find something… someone… Experiment 628.
But it had shocked him with some type of thunderbolt… how long had he been out for? Maybe ten minutes, maybe a day…maybe a century. He had no way of knowing what the time was. Unless… Jumba’s computer!
Stitch scanned the area. A terminal was still active; upon it was some type of countdown. The date was… December 25th, 2004, 17:12:23… only forty-one seconds had passed. But the countdown… that’s what worried Stitch. He had seen, once before, Jumba doing an evacuation drill; back when a five-thousand credit price was on his head. That’s what this was…. a self-destruct sequence! Counting down from 1m:19s:53ms…
Stitch tried to remember… there was a password… eleven characters long… but what was it…
628 stopped for a moment and looked back at the Pelikai house.
“One minute, eighteen seconds… let’s see if you can pass the first test…”
Stitch tried again.
This is no time to go all ‘Access Denied’ on me!
He tried yet another time… the timer read 20 seconds.
Come on… twenty-second time’s the charm…
Stitch checked the timer again… 8 seconds…
The timer froze, and at one second, it couldn’t have been more welcome.
“Access approved, self-destruct sequence aborted.”
628 covered his ears, expecting a boom… but it did not come.
“He did it… I underestimated him… no worry, he will be no match for me…”
Stitch rushed out Jumba’s closet, through the hallway, out the door, and down the pathway he was certain 628 had taken. He just hoped he still had time…
Lilo tried to make sense of what just happened. A… was it an experiment? Yes, it looked remarkably like Stitch, except for the purplish colour… but there was something else different… apart from the ability to speak perfect English… what was it…
She wasn’t to know it at the time, but that one thing was to be the difference between life and death…
Experiment 628 ran through the woods, not looking once back, but speeding forwards, edging closer to his destination…
Gantu drifted overhead in his hovercraft, scanning for any sign of an experiment.
Suddenly, he spotted him – from that altitude, he looked like nothing more than a purple splot, but Gantu was certain it was him, dodging the match-stick trees.
“Yes, that’s right, come to me,” he whispered, fingering his plasma gun.