The “daddy longlegs” sits on a dry root, watching me with multiple prismatic eyes.
A common enough encounter, the little surveillance bots skitter everywhere in this desert. Microscopic plutonium chips power their round bodies, and they have multi-segmented legs that look very similar to pholcidae, cellar spiders.
The tiny scouts don’t take much notice of humans, as a rule. They still give me the jeebies, out here in the barrens, so I pack up my kit and prepare to move along.
A sharp buzzing draws my attention. One of the nasty hunter/killer waspbots, a “mud dauber,” swoops in on the longlegs. The two of them roll around in the dust battling, until the wasp lands a powerful electric “sting” that disables the smaller unit.
I throw my backpack over my shoulder and hike into the Omaha wasteland, while the machines continue to make war in the wreckage of human civilization.
150 words. Inspired by this week’s Picture It & Write prompt: