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[personal profile] wolfanfics
Title: Wear A Fast Gun
Fandom: AusPolitics RPS
Starring: Liberals: Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey, Christopher Pyne, Malcolm Turnbull, Eric Abetz, Julie Bishop, the Young Libs; Labor: Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd, Wayne Swan, Tanya Plibersek, Penny Wong, Young Labor; Steve Fielding; and cameos from the Greens and a couple of dudes in whale costumes.
Pairings: Abbott/Gillard, Turnbull/Rudd, Gillard/Plibersek
Word Count: 6,935
Prompt: 'Other: Evil Goateed Universe' for [livejournal.com profile] au_bingo (my card)
Contains: Tony Abbott, character death, violence, 'sploshuns, Gillard being a BAMF
Rating: FRAO
Disclaimer: Not true in any way, shape or form. Also, I would like to mention I wrote this in a totally non-partisan way. >_>
Author’s Notes: Inspired by this GetUp! ad. Haven't tried to faithfully recreate it, but some elements of it do appear in here. The rest is my brain's creation. :D Title stolen from a depressingly melancholic Wizzard song. ;_;
Summary: It's the election to end all elections, and no one is willing to go down without a fight. Sacrifices must be made for the greater good, and no one is indispensible. A political thriller in four acts.

Act I: Rudd's Defeat
"Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated," Rudd murmured as he peered out through a slit in the wall out to the bloody streets above.

Rudd had known his time was up when Gillard appeared in his office, gun trained on his chest. She wanted his job, knew he wasn't performing anymore. The party wanted him gone. Rudd had never been able to accept she had been right. Rudd hardly let her have her way, though. He had, miraculously, managed to survive Gillard's first attempt on his life, but he had been forced to flee and he had too few friends left who could help him now. He loaded his gun in case he was attacked and waited. A hand fell onto his shoulder and Rudd jumped out of his skin. He turned to see Turnbull behind him, trying to stay hidden in the shadows.

"Jesus, what are you doing here?" Rudd said.

"Thought you might want an ally. I managed to escape, but I lost all my men. It's a total disaster. She's got control of the whole army, and she's on the hunt. We need to get moving," Malcolm said.

Rudd had no time to answer. Turnbull grabbed his hand and led him further down the tunnels. Rudd prayed Turnbull really was playing ally, and not just leading him into an ambush...

* * *

Turnbull stopped as they approached a smaller chamber down further underground than the tunnels they'd previously been in. Rudd was apprehensive. It was far too easy to imagine being trapped down there. Turnbull, on the other hand, thought it was the safest place on earth. With no one else left to turn to, Rudd followed him in.

There was no one around, of course, but it looked like it had been built as a shelter. There were a few bunks carved out of the rocky walls, and very basic wooden furniture. Turnbull grabbed a lantern from the box sitting against a wall and lit it while Rudd stood there, wondering how things had gone so very wrong.

"Why are you here? Surely your party would save you," Rudd said.

"Like hell they would. No, I left them of my own accord before they decided to kill me. Saw the writing on the wall. You know how it is. I'm an Independent now. Besides, I figured you'd need an ally. I've still got connections. I can get you out of the country," Turnbull said.

Rudd stood there resolute. "I'm not fleeing. I'm not leaving Australia. My country needs me. I was elected-"

"Mate, you stopped being in charge when those polls collapsed. She's been out for your blood for months," Turnbull said.

Rudd considered his reply. "Is there anything we can do to fight her?"

"Not that I can see. You haven't got the numbers. Anyone who might've supported you has rallied behind Gillard. You should've made friends when you still had a chance. Now you're on your own," Turnbull said.

Rudd turned his back on him. Considered running away again. He could make it on his own. Couldn't he? A hand closed around his gun. It was only a handgun, all he was able to grab before GIllard began firing at him. He'd managed to escape relatively unharmed, if he considered the graze on his side a very lucky escape. It still hurt, and he hadn't had time to dress it propely. He winced as the wound send a flair of pain down his side.

Turnbull approached him and embraced him, hugging him tight. He pressed a kiss to the back of his neck and Rudd wanted to cry.

"It hurts, I know it hurts. I've been through all this before and come out of it in one piece. I know you can too. Man up, Rudd, and get angry. Don't go out without a fight," Turnbull said softly.

Rudd wiped a tear from his eye. "But they elected me. The people loved me. What am I going to do now?"

Turnbull rubbed his shoulders. "Popularity is nothing if your party doesn't support you. I fear it was always going to end like this. For both you and me. I couldn't change them as Leader, and you never managed to win any friends. Learn from your mistakes, you're very good at that. I'll be here as long as you want me. And don't you dare try and push me away because no one else will come to your aid. These are dark times, Kevin, and people like us need each other. You heär me?"

Rudd wasn't sure he wanted to hear him, but he was absolutely right. There was no one left but him. Rudd had burnt all his bridges ages ago. No one else was coming to save him. For the good of the party, he had to go. He couldn't shake the feeling he would end his life lying in a ditch once Gillard finally found him. She would not fail to kill him a second time.

Rudd turned to face him as Turnbull hugged him close. "All we're doing is biding our time, aren't we? We're not going to get out of this alive."

Turnbull smiled to himself. "Oh, you don't know that. You never know. Stranger things have happened."

"So, what do we do now?" Rudd asked as he sat down on the edge of one of the bunks.

Turnbull turned to face him, raised a finger to shush him. Rudd fell silent. There were strange echoes coming down the hall towards them. Rudd got to his feet and looked towards him.

"I think. I think we need to get out of here. Take this. Stand against the doorway. We'll take them out and escape," Turnbull whispered as he handed him a handgun.

As quietly as they could, they took their positions by the door. Turnbull kept glancing down the hall, keeping an eye out for anyone who might be coming. The sound of footsteps grew louder, and a torchbeam flittered down towards them, sweeping the hallway in search of them.

Rudd didn't dare look out and sunk back further against the rock wall, hoping he would not be discovered. His heart leapt into his mouth as two men appeared in the doorway, their torchbeams somehow managing to miss the two men hiding on either side of them. Drawing on all the courage and anger he had left, he waited til he saw Turnbull's signal and whacked out the guy closest to him with the butt of his gun. The second guy fell to the floor and Turnbull wasted no time in stripping them of their uniforms and weapons.

"Here, get dressed. This'll get us out of here. Then we'll make our way across town to the border. Where you go after that is your choice," Turnbull said.

Rudd saw his plan before he'd told him, but he still appreciated his assistance. Dressed in black combat gear, with a thick helmet and a rifle, they were certainly less able to be picked out as they slipped out of the room. They met with only a few other troops as they progressed, who only stopped them to ask if they'd seen Rudd. Diverting their attention down away from their escape, they made their way out onto the street.

* * *

Running down the street, Rudd wasn't sure where they were going. That they were dressed a lot like other soldiers searching various locations meant that, sooner or later, they lost sight of each other. Rudd wasn't sure where to turn now that he'd lost his one and only ally. He kept to the alleyways, the small back streets, hoping to avoid the major conflict going on around him.

Walking into one alley, he came across a couple of Young Labor recruits. In his attempts to talk his way past them, they recognised his voice and Rudd found them pointing their weapons in his face, ordering him to remove his helmet. Without the stomach to fight back, he did so, and dropped the helmet onto the ground. Just as they were going to shoot him, Rudd caught sight of Turnbull at the other end of the alley. He must've doubled back and worked out where he'd gone. The two recruits didn't even see who their attacker was before they were shot dead. Rudd stepped over them and made his way over to Turnbull, who was gesturing to him.

"Hurry up! Gillard's on the prowl. She's on the ground, I think she's tracking you," Turnbull called.

"Just my luck hey?" Rudd said.

A gunshot rang out from behind them, breaking the eerie silence. The sound echoed off the walls. Rudd looked around, wondering who was shooting at him. There was no way to tell if they were even friendly. Another shot. Rudd was surprised to find himself still alive. it was only when he turned back to Turnbull that he realised who they were shooting at. Turnbull lay there on the ground, blood spilling onto the ground. Rudd wasted no time and fled in case someone decided to take pot shots at him too.

He ran across the road and followed it away from the fighting. He could work out where they were by the plumes of smoke that were slowly driting into the sky. Knowing how visible he was, now that he was without his helmet, he stuck to the shadows, avoiding looking at anyone as he tried to remain invisible. As he backed away from another confrontation, he heard a click behind him.

"Drop it. This time I won't miss," Gillard said, shoving her gun against his head.

Rudd dropped his weapons and walked forward at her bidding. It was all over. He was never going to escape now. She walked him down towards the end of the alleyway.

"Turn around. On your knees."

Rudd hated how cold she sounded. He knelt in front of her and raised his hands in surrender. He was at least going to try and beg some semblance of mercy out of her.

"Don't you try any of that bullshit with me, Rudd. It's over. The Lodge is mine," Gillard said. Her gun was pointed straight at him, and at such close range, she was never going to miss.

"Oh well. Fair shake of the sauce bottle, mate. It's yours," Rudd said.

Gillard blew his brains out. She wasted no time in petty small talk. She still had Abbott to hunt down. Leaving Rudd's body in the alleyway, she stepped over it and headed off to continue her search.

Act II: Gillard's Rampage
In a bunker underneath the city, Tony Abbott watched the ABC's 24 hour news channel intently. A story was breaking, a very bad political story. Rumours were doing the rounds that the incumbent Prime Minister had been assassinated by his deputy, and a military coup was underway. His phone rang. Malcolm Turnbull's frantic voice greeted him.

"Tony - you've got to send help out here, there's some serious trouble. They're everywhere, all of them, I can't escape them. Help a mate out, will you?"

Abbott looked puzzled. "Where are you? I thought you were safe? Why are you calling me anyway?"

"They stormed it. Gillard's leading them. It's a fucking nightmare. She's coming for you. She'll destroy you," Malcolm replied. He sounded breathless and exhausted.

"Why should I help you anyway? You betrayed us, remember?" Abbott said. On the screen before him, there was footage of tanks and soldiers and guns and riots.

"Tony, now is not the time to be a selfish prick," Malcolm warned. "You need to get your people out of here. Everyone's being gunned down. Any more and you'll be crushed into the ground, and I don't want that to happen."

Abbott heard the sound of an explosion and the line went dead. Hesitatingly, he set the phone down again and wondered if perhaps he might want to take his news seriously.


There was no reply.

"Christopher! Get in here now!"

Abbott got to his feet and looked behind him. Christopher stood there with a look of shock on his face.

"Gil-...ard," Christopher said before collapsing onto the floor.

Abbott looked up and saw her standing there. She was dressed in sleek black, a shotgun in one hand. She smirked. Abbott reached for his own weapon but found nothing nearby. Gillard approached him and Abbott wouldn't have admitted how much he liked being so close to her. He could feel her breath on his cheek and she pressed a finger to his lips to shush him.

"Come now, Tony, you don't want to fret. I'm not here to kill you. You make this so much more fun than it would otherwise be. Go on, grab your little gun and scram. I'll give you a head start before I chase you down," Gillard said.

Abbott wanted to run, but he found himself frozen before her. She laughed and pulled him into a harsh kiss before pushing him away. He fell to the floor, gazing up at her in awe.

"Go on, run along now, little puppy. The chase is half the fun," Gillard said.

Abbott scrambled to his feet and ran. He was scared out of his life, but by God above, he was so going to enjoy this.

* * *

Wayne Swan approached Gillard as Abbott fled. Gillard fired a few warning shots at Abbott's retreating figure. It had taken little time to sniff out Abbott's hideout. Then again, this was just the beginning of her grand plans.

"The place is clear, ma'am. Abbott appears to have been the only one left," Swan said.

"Abbott, and the dear little poodle. Pity. I could've groomed him, given the time," Gillard said, kicking Christopher Pyne's dead body as it lay before her. His blood dripped onto the worn concrete floor.

"He would've betrayed you in the end. His lot aren't to be trusted," Swan said.

Gillard turned to him and grasped his chin. "You're just jealous I think he's cuter than you."

Swan didn't merit that with a reply. Gillard approached the desk and sifted through the papers Abbott had left behind. She probably wouldn't find anything she didn't already know, but she was thorough. It might prove useful in hunting down the rest of the Liberal army.

"He's a cocky little bastard, you know. I haven't had this much fun with an Opposition Leader in years," Gillard said.

"We really should move on, ma'am, things are moving faster than we anticipated. There's talk the Greens might make a surprise move," Swan urged.

Gillard straightened and turned to face him. "Well, then. You'd better make sure Parliament House is bloody secured, then, hadn't you?"

With one final look at the photo of Abbott standing in his Speedos, posing on a beach somewhere, Gillard turned and left. Her men would destroy the place once they'd searched it thoroughly. She had other things to worry about.

"Get the chopper ready. It's time to hit the skies," Gillard said as they left the bunker.

"Right on it, ma'am," Swan said with a slight bow of his head.

Gillard shouldered the rifle as she walked, and Swan, just for a moment, thought she was the most terrifying woman he'd ever met.

* * *

Abbott ran. The streets were filled with people, and in the dark, it was hard to tell who were friends and who were enemies. The Libs had used the Labor political rumblings to launch their own attack in the hopes they might snatch power back when Labor were too busy fighting amongst themselves. It was a huge gamble, but one Abbott was willing to take. The fighting had left Parliament House and spilled onto the streets. Who was left by morning was anyone's guess.

There was only one other safehouse he knew of in this part of town, and he headed there as fast as he could. He knew Gillard would be chasing him, but if Rudd was still alive, then he would prove enough of a distraction that would mask his escape. He just hoped he wouldn't end up dead either.

He turned a corner, and was confronted by a group of Young Labor recruits, their rifles ready to fire. They were on him quickly, recognising him as he passed under a streetlamp. He was shoved up against a wall as his gun was taken from him.

"Well. Look what we found. A filthy Liberal. Time we executed him already," one said. He was a smarmy looking chap with a far too neat haircut.

The girl beside him disagreed. "She won't want him killed. Not yet. We'd better take him back to the cells instead."

Before they could arrest him, there was an explosion behind them further down the street and a tank appeared. The Young Labor kids fled when they saw the Liberal logo painted on the side. Abbott breathed a sigh of relief as he saw Hockey's head appear from the top.

"You'd better get in here before they kill you for real," Hockey called.

Abbott wasted no time scrambling inside the tank. Rumbling, hot and noisy as it was, it was still safer than being out on his own. Hockey drove the tank off and Abbott thanked God for sending help when he thought he was about to be killed.

* * *

Up in the helicopter, Swan was tracking the progress of Opposition tanks and artillery while Gillard scanned the ground for anyone who might be worth shooting at. She was particularly deadly with a machine gun, and she gleefully opened fire on a group of Young Lib soldiers who were marching down the street back towards Parliament House. They fired some missiles back, but their defiance didn't last and soon they had all fled for cover.

"Any idea where Abbott might be? Little worm wouldn't have left the capital, would he?" Gillard said.

Swan consulted the maps before him. "Hard to say. No one's picking up anything from him. He might be underground, in the tunnels. We know they've been used by the Libs in the past, and if he's with Hockey, I daresay he's brought him there. I've got our scouts searching them, but they've not reported back yet."

"Tell them to keep searching, but do not kill him if they find him. Only I get the honour of disposing of that ratfucker," Gillard said as she opened fire on some more Young Libs.

The helicopter swerved as a missile came a little too close to call and Swan nearly lost his footing and fell to the ground. Clambering back up as the chopper righted itself, he thanked his lucky stars he was not going to die at that precise moment.

"Come on, Swan, man up. We've got work to do," Gillard said as she noticed Swan steadying himself.

"Yes, ma'am, right on it," Swan replied and took his place again. It was going to be a long night, and it was barely 10pm.

* * *

Abbott was pleased to be amongst friends. Hockey drove the tank like, well... like a tank. He had to hold on as they drove over whatever happened to be in the way as they made their way through Canberra to their own base. Abbott could've sword he heard planes and choppers in the sky and he hoped they were friendly enough to not fire at them.

"Christ, not now, you bastards. We've got a lock-on. Missiles are coming. I'll do our best to escape," Hockey muttered as he tried to manouevre a tank out of the way.

The missiles did in fact miss them, but the explosion behind them sent the tank flying into a building as it scooted across the road. It wasn't big enough to destroy the tank, but it did make getting out rather difficult as the tank had been turned into a misshapen pile of metal. Hockey was not at all well, and there was a chunk of metal sticking into his leg and a bad cut on his shoulder.

Abbott was crushed under a junior staffer who had been on lookout. He had taken a lot of shrapnel to the chest. There was no saving him now. Abbott struggled to shift him out of the way. He could smell smoke and the tank hissed. Touching a side of the tank, he could feel how hot it was. He wanted to get out very much. After a concerted effort, he managed to push the staffer off him and struggled free. Hockey was unconscious. Abbott wanted to rescue him, but he knew he couldn't carry him.

"Anyone still alive?" Abbott called.

Abbott shivered as there was no reply. He searched around for the exit, only to discover it had been bent out of shape and would not open. Banging against it did not work. He wasn't sure there was another way out of a tank. He had trained as infantry, not tanks. Exhausted, and aware his own ribs were beginning to hurt rather a lot, he sat back down again and waited. He would probably die in here. What a pathetic way to go.

Act III: Abbott's Battlelines
Abbott was never sure how much time has passed before he heard someone hacking at the tank. He heard voices outside, and he hoped they were his people. Scrambling to his feet, he began pounding against the hatch again, the walls, whatever else he could reach. There were some loud banging noises and the sound of something cutting the metal away and Abbott moved back from the heat it sent into the space. Eventually, Abetz's head came into view.

"Oh, man, it's good to see you. I wasn't sure if I was gonna get out of this one," Abbott said as he approached him.

"You should be more careful then, hadn't you? Though you're not as indisposable as you might think," Abetz said as he hauled him out.

Abbott was glad to be out of the tank and he accepted the blanket one of the Young Libs handed him. Wrapping himself in it, he approached Abetz as a couple of his men investigated the tank further for more survivors.

"You could've been killed. What happened? Why were you out here with him anyway?" Abetz said.

"It was Gillard, man, she stormed the bunker. Killed Chris. Sent me running. She's fucking enjoying the chase, that's what. I bet those missiles were her idea. I don't think she cares how many she kills as long as she gets to hang onto power," Abbott said.

"You know, some in our party believe you've been compromised by Mz Gillard. I'd watch your back if I were you," Abetz said, and Abbott knew that look he gave him far too well.

"So, any news of Rudd? Last I heard he was still on the run," Abbott said, changing tack.

"Latest rumours are that she's taken him out. No one knows where, though even our sources confirm he's no longer out there. She's the Prime Minister now," Abetz said.

Abetz's men reported there were no other survivors from the tank. Bowing their heads for a moment, they said a prayer for their dead before heading off to another safehouse. Abbott prayed hopefully that they would not be found so easily this time.

* * *

It was the last bunker they had left. Gillard and her troops had destroyed the rest. Abbott was not pleased at how swidtly she had moved against them; if she kept this up, the Libs might not survive the night. Even the Nationals had taken the hint and fled up north to Queensland before Gillard had a chance to attack them. Word was the Greens were also in hiding, though what their plans were wasn't known. Maybe they would just sit this conflict out and wait til it was over before making their next move. Certainly they were the party most likely to try and gain from this chaos.

The bunker was in a particularly melancholy mood. They were all well-aware of how badly they were losing, and it did nothing to cheer them up. Certain people were notably absent, and Abbott didn't have to ask where they'd gone. They were still a divided party after all they'd been through.

Julie Bishop actually gave Abbott a genuine smile when she saw him return. Abbott hadn't counted on her loyalty being so real, but he did thank her for it. A good loyal deputy like her was hard to come by.

"I knew you'd come back. I just knew it. With you here, we can't lose," Julie said, sounding totally convinced in spite of the odds.

"Well, I - thanks for the endorsement, Julie. We'll see how we go, hey? How many people have we got left anyway? Is it enough for one final battle?" Abbott said.

"We've lost a lot of infantry, though we still have a lot of experienced soldiers left. It might be enough. Are you thinking of calling Gillard up for a showdown?" Julie said.

"It's one possibility, yes. I doubt we can beat her while she's still got her air force raining hellfire down on us. That's taken out too many of our tanks for my liking. We've lost some damn good men that way," Abbott said.

"I've sent our few choppers up to take them out, but she still does outnumber us. All we can hope is that she loses one, maybe two of her fleet. Without our allies, we're on our own," Julie said.

"Yes, but so is she. She might have everything, but she's still alone. That might weigh in our favour," Abbott said. An idea was forming in his head. It was incredibly risky, all Abbott's plans were like that, but it might be the only way they'll win. "We need to take her out. Once she's gone, they'll crumble around her. There's no one else who could replace her who would pull them together as strongly. It's worth a shot, right?"

"You're not thinking what I think you are, are you? That would be suicide," Julie said, shocked at his audacity.

"Julie, mate, what other chance do we have? Organise everyone who's still alive into a battle front. I'll call her for a final showdown. This is the place we want. Make sure there are snipers in place," Abbott said, pointing to a spot on the map a few streets away.

Julie was reluctant, but saluted her agreement to the plan. Perhaps Abbott was right. What other choice did they have left?

* * *

Abbott retreated to his private rooms, Abetz still tailing him. He had unsuccessfully managed to talk him out of it so far, and Abbott would hear none of it. He shut his door and left Abetz's questions unanswered. Finally he had some privacy. Gillard had been flirting with him for years, and they had admittedly had a few liaisons from time to time. Never happy liaisons, mind, but that didn't appear to be the point. Somehow, whenever things turned sour for either or both of them, they found themselves in bed together. She was one drug Abbott found impossible to drop.

He took his phone and dialled her number. He wasn't sure she'd pick up, but he had to hope. He had a few other numbers to use if that failed; all that mattered was contacting her people, but he rather fancied talking with her personally. She might suggest meeting up again-

He stopped himself there. Perhaps Abetz was right. Perhaps he had been compromised by her. Perhaps he should watch his back, like he'd been warned. However, it was a momentary thought and didn't last as he called her. He was pleasantly surprised that she answered.

"Tony, my dear, what a pleasant surprise to hear from you. Still surviving, are we? I thought you'd have given up by now," Gillard said.

"Don't worry, we'll take you out sooner or later. We've got a plan," Abbott said, unafraid to tell her such.

She laughed. "Oh, I shall be very happy to see what little plan you and your little dog come up with."

Abbott glared, as if she could see it through the phone. "You killed my little dog, don't you remember?"

"Oh, yes, that's right. Such a pity. He was ever so cute," Gillard said, though Abbott didn't believe she cared at all. "So, since you have had the audacity to call me, I suppose it would be rude not to ask why you called. Ready to surrender, are we?"

"Call your troops off. I want one final showdown. Your men against mine. Whoever wins takes the country," Abbott said.

"My people vastly outnumber yours. What makes you think you'll win?" Gillard said.

"I don't. I just want this over and done with. You've killed enough for one night," Abbott said.

Gillard considered his proposal. "Alright. You got a place in mind then?"

Abbott told her. "We meet at dawn. It ends there."

"Alright. You're on. Now, would you care to meet to ... flesh out the details? Or are you still trapped underground like a fugitive?"

Abbott could almost see her smiling as she spoke. "Where?"

"You know where. Meet me in an hour. I'll take care of you once and for all."

Abbott couldn't help hearing a threat in her voice, but he knew he would still go anyway. He was always drawn to her, no matter the danger. It was in his nature.

"Meet you in an hour then."

"Good boy. I like it when you listen to sense."

Gillard hung up before Abbott could answer him. He slipped his phone back into his pocket and breathed a sigh of relief. Soon, all this fighting would be over and they could get back to governing the country. Now to find a reasonable excuse to leave the compound to go meet her. He thought for a moment before leaving to find Abetz.

* * *

Abbott was pleased he had managed to give Abetz an excuse so convincing, he almost believed that was the real reason he was leaving the safety of the bunker to meet with Gillard. The streets had become strangely quiet now that the fighting had stopped. Abbott could still see Gillard's troops in place, staring at him as if they owned the city and he was trespassing, and he wondered for a moment if his idea was more foolhardy than he'd led himself to believe.

He made his way across town to the place where they always met. It was a small apartment, nondescript and paid for in cash, on the third floor of a relatively dull apartment block. Knocking on the door, Gillard came to greet him, dressed in the sort of outfit Abbott just wanted to tear off her.

"Someone's been a bit naughty today, haven't they?" Gillard said as she pulled him into the room.

"I-well, we'll see about that, won't we?" Abbott said, almost unable to speak as he gazed at her.

Abbott kicked the door shut behind him as he embraced her. Oh, she was beautiful. She was the sort of woman Abbott would never be able to control, the sort of woman who would assert her dominance without even trying, and Abbott would respond instantly.

They kissed, and she lay down on the bed. He crawled over to her, caressing her body reverently. They kissed again, and Abbott never wanted to leave her.

Act IV: The Final Showdown

Gillard left the apartment door wide open. Abbott lay bleeding and decapitated on the ground; he probably wouldn't be missed until the morning, and by then, it would be too late. She smiled as she made her way back to her base. Swan greeted her, handing her a large coffee as he briefed her about their situation.

"We've taken out several of their tanks, and many of their ground troops. It should be an easy battle at any rate. We have more firepower at our disposal. Unless they've got some sort of hidden weapon they haven't told us about, it should be over in half an hour," Swan said.

"I don't want odds. I want us to win. Make sure you're absolutely confident on their numbers. I'm not taking any chances with that lot," Gillard said.

"Yes, ma'am," Swan said. He bowed his head slightly and went to work.

Gillard stopped and looked over the troops before her. Yes, she would relish finishing the Liberals off once and for all. Now all she needed was-

"Tanya, with me," Gillard said as she spotted her cleaning her rifle amongst the rest of them.

Tanya left her rifle in the charge of the girl next to her and followed her leader. Gillard led her to the rooftop of the building they were on for some privacy. The air was cool, and Tanya shivered a little. Gillard appeared unfazed.

Tanya approached her. "Why are we out here?"

Gillard turned to her and brought her into her arms. Kissing her gently, she smiled at her and brushed her hair back behind her ear. "I want you to be my deputy when this is over. We'll be fantastic together."

"But - wait, no, I can't leave her. I won't leave her, not even for you," Tanya said, pulling away from her.

Gillard reached for her gun, but stopped as Tanya moved back, trying to stop her. "Who's she? Who have you been with?"

"She's of no importance to you. Look, I'll support you in whatever you do, but don't ask me to do that for you. There are some things more important than you killing everyone in sight. What is this even achieving? We're supposed to be a democracy. When everyone took up arms, that was when it all went wrong. This is wrong, and I'm not sure I want any part in it," Tanya said.

Gillard narrowed her eyes. She approached her, grabbing her collar roughly. Gillard was not interested in dissent. Her gun rested against Tanya's temple.

"I would reconsider, Prime Minister. She will be a valuable asset in future."

Gillard turned to find Penny Wong behind her. Her face was expressionless, and she held a handgun at her side. Gillard let Tanya go, and she ran off back inside the bunker. Penny approached Gillard.

"It's you, isn't it? She's been getting in bed with you. And to think, all this time, I was sure she'd be open to my advances. Seems someone got to her first," Gillard said.

"I can assure you, Prime Minister, it's not me. I don't know who she's with, but it's not me. Leave her alone. We've got work to do," Penny said.

Even Gillard wasn't stupid enough to argue with her. "Yes, you're right. Come on, then. We might be able to get a few hours' sleep before the battle. I'd wager that'd give us an advantage over that mob."

"This way, Prime Minister," Penny said, gesturing her back inside.

* * *

Abetz paced around the bunker. Abbott hadn't returned. He was this close to assuming command himself if he didn't turn up. He'd probably gone and gotten himself killed. He was too rash, acted too inconsistently. No, what the Liberal Party needed was a strong leader, someone who could command the troops and offer stable leadership. Abetz was convinced he was the right man for the job. He'd have to give up his Senate seat, but it would be done for the greater good of the party.

It was 3am. Most of the troops were asleep. He felt it safe, since the attacaks had actually stopped, like Gillard had promised. There was no activity outside except the occasional sound of a vehicle passing. He looked over the map again. He'd been playing around with the positioning all night, trying to work out the best formation to use against an enemy who was significantly greater in number and firepower than they were. It wasn't the best site, if Abetz was honest with himself. The streets were too narrow, it was too visible, it was always possible they could end up there and Gillard could just send missiles at them and finish them right there and then. There was no chance to surprise her. She would see them coming.

"Have we got anything left to attack them with? Anything at all?" Abetz wondered to himself.

He studied the map again, looking for any possible weakness he could exploit. He knew where Gillard's camp was, and what route they'd likely take. Was there any way of stopping them before they arrived? He traced various routes with his finger, trying not to come to the conclusion that, yes, they were entirely fucked and there was no way they were ever going to win.

But then he noticed something. It was out of the way, sure, and it was damned risky too, but maybe, just maybe, it might work. He smirked, pleased he might have managed to outsmart her. He would crush her and take her forces for himself.

* * *

Dawn came.Gillard was up an hour before, doing some final planning. Albanese had okayed the idea, and with that, she had gone to rouse the troops. She already had sent her scouts out to see if any danger lay in the surrounding area. She hadn't had it confirmed, but with Abbott gone, she was sure Abetz would at least try to steal command from him while he was absent. As far as she could ascertain, he was the one most likely to get his job, given the losses they'd suffered, so it made sense to plan for what he might come up with, and that meant scouting the surrounding streets for ambushes. It was the one problem with urban warfare. Guerilla tactics were both useful and problematic. Still, her early morning intelligence gathering had proved useful, and she laid her own traps for her beleaguered opponents. Now all there was to do was sit back and wait for the battle to start.

* * *

The two sides met just after 7am on the lawns outside Parliament House. Inbetween dodging each other's traps, it had become the agreed meeting place. Gillard had banked on Abetz agreeing to it. It was an icy cold morning, but no one seemed put off by it. Weapons were readied, as the two armies faced off. Neither side noticed the Greens, who had chained themselves to the front of Parliament House that morning to protest at the violence. They were yelling anti-war slogans at them, while two others in whale costumes danced in front of them doing terrible impressions of whalesong.

Gillard wasn't afraid. She had a few tricks up her sleeve still, and hoped Abetz would be too blinded by what else was going on to see what she was doing. He stood at the head of his men, his gaze trained on her.

"Did you lose another Leader, Abetz? That was clumsy of you. You really should take better care of them," Gillard called.

"Yes, where is Abbott, Mz Gillard? I'm sure you had something to do with his disappearance," Abetz called back.

Gillard laughed. "I wouldn't know what you're talking about, Abetz. I'm not his keeper, you know."

Abetz didn't bother replying. Instead, he ordered his men to begin their attack. Gillard was close behind him. The two sides clashed, and chaos played out before them.

* * *

Of course, no one noticed Steve Fielding sneaking inside Parliament House and down to the House of Reps. The Mace was still in place as Parliament was still technically sitting. He approached it reverently, almost hesitant to touch it. He saw the Speaker's chair at the end of the chamber and his course became clear. He barely managed to lift the huge Mace, but the effort in carrying it down the chamber was worth it as he lifted it onto the table in front of him. He stopped for a moment to catch his breath before getting out a crown that he put on his head, and a long flowing royal robe, which he tied around his neck.

"There. Now I'm the King of this place and everyone will have to listen to me! Isn't it great?" he said excitedly, though no one was around to congratulate him.

Saitsfied, he took his seat in the Speaker's chair and practiced making orders to his invisible subjects.

* * *

Abetz really had tried his best, but Gillard appeared to have foreseen his every move, and he soon found himself cornered, with his troops either dead, or deserted. Gillard closed in for the kill, determined to take him out himself. She'd backed him up to the steps of Parliament House. Not even the two Greens people in whale costumes dared to stop her. They meekly backed off and let her pass.

"This won't be the end of this, you know. You kill me now, there'll always be more to come. The people won't accept your absolute rule. They'll fight back, and you'll end up dead like me. Don't say I didn't warn you, Mz Gillard," Abetz said as he was backed up against the wall.

"I appreciate your concern, Eric, I really do. I'll make sure to heed that in future when we as a nation are moving forward to a greater country than the one we have now. Just you wait. They'll worship me and never ask me to leave," Gillard said.

And then it was all over. Abetz collapsed to the ground. The fighting slowed as Gillard came to face them, triumph written all over her face. Her people cheered, while the vanquished Liberals sunk to the ground, defeated. Oh, it was going to be a wonderful day, Gillard was sure of it.
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September 2010

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