I really enjoyed this one.
IN TOO DEEP.
It’s worth noting at this point that in Predator, the hero was a hardened military veteran with experience in guerrilla warfare, while Derry worked in the Accounts department for a large national fish exporter, and the most alien thing he had encountered in his life so far was the perpetual lack of sticky notes in his office. Being woefully terrible at making quick decisions, preferring an hour or two to mull over every eventuality, also goes some way to explain his poor choice of hiding place.
His limbs stiff, his breathing now wheezy gulps, and his head now spent more time underwater as his legs struggled to move. Derry panicked, with a thought that he didn’t have hours to mull this over…. he was going to die.
As he floundered, the creature loomed over the water's edge, staring down at him -- so much for the hope that it wouldn't see him! It raised some sort of complicated device to its -- those were its eyes, weren't they? Undoubtedly a weapon of some sort, and he found himself wondering which would be worse: drowning, freezing to death, being vaporized, or being eaten. But no laser bolt came, just a light that illuminated his sodden head as the creature peered through some sort of lens. The hell --? Was that some kind of camera?
The thing opened its terrifying maw, and let out a sound somewhat like a cow being fed through a woodchipper. Or at least what Derry imagined that might sound like, not that he'd ever needed to before now. Then it made some adjustments to a device affixed to its throat, and a strange mechanical voice accompanied the bellowing: "Good evening. I observe that you have placed yourself in a context|challenge|predicament causing respiratory and circulatory distress. May I inquire as to the significance of this act among your tribe|culture|species? Are you attempting to terminate your existence, or this is an artistic performance|athletic event|mating display?"
This was not any of the scenarios Derry had imagined.
“Ath… wha? Uhh, wait, no?” he said.
“Please excuse me. I do not understand your meaning|phraseology|intention. Do you use slang|jargon|patois? This lexicon has not been upgraded to include modern slang.”
What did he say to that?
“I don’t… I….” was all he managed before the water pulled him under again. A struggle for the surface brought limited response from his limbs and panic almost caused him to breathe in. He did inhale when something snaked around his waist and the following flight through the air was punctuated with hacking. He landed hard and it forced the last of the water out of his lungs.
Five copper eyes blinked at him.
“Not a mating display,” it said.
“No. I thought…. I thought you were… ah… Predator. From, the movie, because… I did.”
The creature twisted its head upside down like an owl.
“Incorrect. I am not a predator. I am Richard. I am intolerant|on a restricted diet|vegan."
Derry’s brain surrendered.
“Richard,” he said.
“Richard is not my actual name. I have chosen this name for convenience|to make friends|humour.”
“Richard isn’t your real name. Because you’re a vegan.”