A/n: Okay a happy holidays to all my readers and here for you a holiday update. Now since the admin here at ffn don't want us writers to shout out to our reviewers but use the reply feature I will be sending out a general thankyou too all of you. A few announcements I've decided on the Premis for this story's sequel or should I say prequel which will take place in 1945 and involve WWII. I have many of the characters decided upon but if anyone has a suggestion please drop a line or put it in your review and while on that note Sean what was the proffessor's name that discovered HB?(Changed rating for safty purposes, don't want anyone getting affended by accident)
Anyway thanks for sticking with me and it would be a great present if you all reviewed. So without any ado...
Ch. 7: Turning Points
"Do you really expect us to believe that a werewolf…"
"Hybrid," sighed Michael interrupting Piper's rant. "How does Mack make this seem so easy?" he thought to himself.
"Excuse me hybrid, a feral, a vampire, an 'alien', and a Guy-something or other…" she continued.
"Guyver," interjected a thoroughly disgruntled Cleo at how the eldest Charmed One reacted to the truth of what they were trying to tell them.
"A Guyver" said Piper mockingly. "Are trying to save the world from this Domino guy who has a reincarnated French sorceress who has taken over the body of her descendant and a demon who as far as we know was vanquished, that about sum it up?"
"Dominous and yes," said Michael.
"Well pardon me if I don't believe you" said Piper defiantly.
"And pray tell why not?" asked Cleo with a mixture of defiance and mock interest masking her growing anger at the witch.
"Because, if it was true then we would have been alerted; an Elder or some other magical creature would have contacted us" she said.
"Has it ever occurred to you that the reason why the Elders and other witches are in the dark is because Dominous knows that should he move on this front it will bring you into the fold and risk his plans?" said Cleo almost begging Piper to retort.
"Then why recruit our children and not us?" asked Phoebe who was sitting across the room with her head in her hands trying to block out the negative emotions her empathic abilities were picking up from Piper and Cleo.
"Good question" quipped Piper sending a dark look to Cleo.
Cleo's lip curved in to a small snarl. But she turned to Michael who looked pensive "We don't know; from what Mack had said to us the full mission would only be given when the full team or as many people who had agreed was assembled, as for why your children, I can only say why not your children?" said Michael.
Piper looked as if she was about to say something when a bright glow and the sound of crackling flames appeared in the hall. The group quickly rushed into the hall and came face to face with Talia and Wyatt each of them with a passenger, Clark had his hand on Wyatt's shoulder and Selene was helping Talia remain standing.
"Oh dear god, LEO!" exclaimed Piper as she rushed over and embraced her disheveled son as did Phoebe who helped her into the living room.
As they went passed he noticed a glimmer of metal in one of Talia's clenched hands as the elder Whitelighter appeared and began healing his injured son and niece. "What happened?" he asked looking to Clark and Selene.
Clark seemed grave and said nothing. Selene face remained as emotionless as ever except that her eyes were damp with tears. "Mack, we arrived just as…Isobel killed him" she said. She seemed on the edge of tears again; Michael pulled her into a comforting embrace. After which he looked to Clark plainly waiting to hear the recount of the night's events.
"We arrived at the roof just as Mack's body liquefied; Isobel had her back to us and was focused on Wyatt and Talia…"
Wyatt and Talia looked upon the face of their captor a mixture of fear, horror, and in Talia's case utter hatred on their face. Talia's eyes shifted to the piece of the warrior clenched in the witch's hand. For some reason she could not explain she had to get it away from her, for what purpose Talia didn't know only that she had to.
"Well now that our uninvited guest is gone," said Isobel her lips curling into a vicious smile "I can deal with you." Her empty hand began to glow and pulse with energy which was then flung at the shield Wyatt had up separating themselves from their tormentor.
"I can't hold it!" said Wyatt as he tried to maintain the shield.
"Yes, child you are tired and weak. Drop your shield and sleep, the eternal sleep" she released another energy bolt this time causing the shield to start winking in and out of existence. Another would have taken out the shield except for the fact that as Isobel charged the third one Selene fired off a round from her pistol clipping the hand that clenched the remains of the Guyver.
Isobel screamed in pain as the orb clattered to the ground sounding like loose change escaping from a hole in the pocket. Talia seized the opportunity and used her telekinetic powers to pull the orb into her hands. Isobel looked at her in disgust then to the League members behind her.
If she took out the cousins the League members would get her, if she fought the League members she would loose the cousins and have to explain it to Dominous, and she had a wound that needed tending. "You may have prolonged their fate," she said to Clark and Selene motioning to the cousins "but I still killed one of your own and left you with no leader to tell you all what to do next," she taunted. With that Isobel vanished in a flash leaving nothing behind but the puddle of remains that was once Mack Radner.
"We cleaned up Mack's remains and then contacted Chloe," finished Clark.
"After which you arrived here" said Michael now sitting on the stairs leading to the upper floors of the Halliewell manor. "I hate to say it but the witch was right, we're now one member short and more than likely Mack knew more about our other recruits as well as their names and locations."
Time seemed to slow to a crawl for the remaining League members as they contemplated their next move until a yell echoed from the living room "ABSOLUTELY NOT!" The League members rushed into the room to find a livid Piper standing toe to toe with a determined looking Talia.
"Like it or not Aunt Piper these freaks were after us not you, not the Book of Shadows, but us, me and Wyatt. That man, Mack, Guyver whatever he was gave his life for us so that we could have the opportunity to fight this evil that sent an assassin to kill us rather than risking us joining these people," said Talia heatedly to her aunt obviously trying to contain her anger.
"But you two are too young to be fighting. We were in our late twenties when we began fighting evil; you're not even out of high school yet!" exclaimed Piper. "I won't let you two throw your lives away before you even had a chance to live them!"
"Like we did?" asked Paige.
Piper turned to her sisters "That's not what I meant; Phoebe, help me," she pleaded.
"I can't because if it was us we would be doing the same thing. If it was one of us that was assassinated we would want to honor the person who saved us," said Phoebe.
Piper looked to her husband for support. "Piper I wish I could agree, I wish that they could stay out of this war but in war it is the young that suffer," Leo said with tears in his eyes.
"I don't want them to; I don't want to loose them like I did Prue, grams, and mom," she cried and collapsed into a heap with tears streaming down her face like trickling water falls. Leo rushed to comfort her.
"They won't," the sisters and Leo turned to the League members who stood out in the hall. "I may not be the leader Mack was, but I can guarantee to you this: that they will come home to all of you, stronger and wiser maybe, but unharmed," said Michael.
Piper looked to the four people who stood before them and saw not a collection of freaks with unknown alliances but fellow fighters against evil. With a heavy heart she nodded her consent.
Talia embraced her mom as her aunt regained her footing and held her tightly. No matter what Michael might say this could very well be the last time that they would be together. "I love you mom. I know I don't say it enough and that I can be a pain but I do," she said as she was held in her arms. For a brief moment, Talia wasn't the traitor former Princess of the Underworld but a seventeen year old girl being hugged by her mom.
"You are not a pain, you're my daughter and I will love you until the day I die," said Phoebe.
"Mom," said Talia as she left her mothers warm arms. "Could you hold on to this," she held out the metal orb that Isobel pulled from Mack. Phoebe took the orb from Talia's hand but almost instantly she seized up and her eyes snapped shut; all of them telltale signs of a vision.
"Aunt Piper!" she called shaking Piper, Leo and Wyatt from their own tender moment.
In her minds eye Phoebe's vision flashed showing many scenes but always the same man; a young twenty something, chubby, with brown hair; repeating the same words "Regeneration abilities." Then as quickly as it happened Phoebe snapped out of it dazed but alert.
"What was it?" asked Paige.
"A man, at least what I think was one a man, he seemed more like he wore a human shape as a cloak, and kept repeating over and over 'Regeneration abilities'" she said.
"You don't think…" said Selene at the room heard this.
"I don't know. Mack always kept the truth about his powers guarded from us because he feared what they could do; the full extent of his Guyver abilities were only known to M, Mack, and that Creator Benny. More than likely they are in his file," he rounded on Clark. "Clark, call Chloe; tell her to check Mack's file on anything pertaining to his regeneration abilities."
Clark pulled out his cell and made the call. "It'll take a while. Mack's file is a bit extensive; ten to twenty more than likely," Chloe said sobbingly.
"Okay call if you get anything," said Clark then turned to Michael. "Chloe said she will look it up but it will take a little while."
"Good, a brief respite will do us all good after tonight," said Michael.
Suddenly, a blast issued from the hall sending the front doors careening down the hall. A bandaged Isobel stepped into the manor and this time she wasn't alone.
"Clark, take Talia and Wyatt and get someplace safe!" yelled Selene as she fired off round after round into the body of the Zoanoid she was fighting. The Charmed Ones and the other League members attempted to hold off some of them, the witches had little success since it seemed that their powers just glanced off them. Piper, however, was locked in an end all grudge match with Isobel, and Michael was tussling with three high level Zoanoids.
Without a second thought Clark grabbed the cousins by their wrist and led them out toward the kitchen. "Get them, kill the little ones but leave Kent, I want him for myself," yelled Isobel to one of the Zoanoids fighting Michael. A large lizard type one with an alligator's head left Michael to his brothers and followed Kent and the cousins to the kitchen. Before they could reach the back door he knocked them down into the basement.
Talia was the only one of the three who didn't land in a heap, but found herself in a stare down with the creature which was snarling and drooling like a rabid dog. She quickly fired off a barrage of fireballs which like her aunts' powers just seemed to glance off it body. If anything it just enrages it more. It's about to take a swipe when…
"Excalibur!" yelled a now standing Wyatt. Instantly, a silver sword appeared in his waiting hands in a shower of light. He quickly blocks the strike intended for his cousin. He struggles to hold the creature off when out of nowhere Clark rams the creature sending it into a wall.
The monster let out a fierce roar and forgetting its orders begins attacking Clark. The Kryptonian stood his ground dodging and attacking the creature trying to keep it focused on him. Wyatt stood not far away with his sword in hand ready to jump in if needed. Talia, however, with her powers essentially useless struggled to find a weapon to defend herself with not wanting to leave her cousin with out back-up in this fight.
Talia quickly had to duck down behind a box pile when the Zoanoid attempted to hit Clark with a chunk of concrete. As she caught her breath she felt her phone vibrate. Out of pure habit she checked it; the screen in her cellphone did not show anything on the caller ID except three letters "LXG."
"League of Extraordinary Gentlemen," she said realizing what the letters meant having overheard the Hybrid Michael referring to their group by that name. Trusting to hope she answered it "Hello?"
"Talia Turner?" asked a female voice.
"How did you get this number?" she asked.
"Normally, I would explain but none of the other League members are answering my calls. My name in Chloe Sullivan. I'm a friend of Clark's. I need to talk to the person who has Mack's remains," says Chloe hurriedly.
Talia looked down at her other hand and on it she still clenched the silver orb that Isobel pulled from his forehead. "You're speaking to her," she said.
"Thank god!" said Chloe. "Listen, is it damaged in any way? Does it looked cracked, or is it in pieces?"
"No," says Talia. "But the translucent ring around it is glowing," she remarked.
"It's still functioning," said Chloe joyfully. "Listen to me Talia; I need you to find an out of the way stable place for you to place the remains."
"Why?" Talia asked confused.
"Because if left in a stable location the Trans Medal will begin regenerating; in about twenty-four hours Mack will be completely regenerated body, mind and soul," said Chloe.
"How?" Talia asked shocked.
"The medal acts like a back up disc for a computer. It has an exact copy of Mack's body structure and DNA along with all his memories up to the point when the Trans Medal was removed," explained Chloe.
"I can't" said Talia. She quickly explained what was going on in the manor.
"Oh god! A house full of Zoanoids and the one who can stop them is…wait," said Chloe; an idea suddenly hitting her. "Their might be another way."
Talia listened as she explained the second course of action. "Are you sure about this Chloe?" asked Talia.
"I have the file on this right in front of me; the source is an expert on Mack powers; hell he designed them," she said.
"Even so the only humans in the house are all on the side of good except the psycho witch. Everyone else here are Zoanoids…who are partially human," said Talia having a sudden realization.
"Talia?" asked Chloe.
"I have a plan, how long would the process take?" asked Talia.
"Not long; five to ten minutes at most," responded Chloe.
"Then you'll get a call in fifteen if it works," said Talia confidently who hung up and peeked her head out over the top of the boxes, a playful yet evil smirk on her face.
The fight was at a stand still. Wyatt had joined in helping an exhausted Clark hold off the beast. The creature soon got a lucky shot which sent Wyatt in Talia's direction. She quickly rushed from her cover to help her cousin.
"Man, and I thought upper level demons were tough. This thing makes them look like puppy dogs," he remarked.
"You okay?" asked Talia.
"Sore and bruised but I'll live," said Wyatt.
"Alive enough to attempt to pull off one your cousins crazy plans," asked Talia rather playfully.
Wyatt's face became a mixture of shock and horror. "I hate to ask Talia but what do you have in mind?"
"ARE YOU NUTS" exclaimed Wyatt after hearing Talia's plan.
"I've lived with you how long and now you realize this," quipped Talia. "Besides you have a better plan?"
Wyatt sighed. Like it or not Talia's plans no matter how crazy tended to work. "We'll try to pin him to a wall and give you your opening; just be ready" said Wyatt getting to his feet to rejoin the fight with Talia waiting for her opening.
Wyatt quickly conveyed to Clark the plan Talia had. "Is she nuts?" he asked amazed that he was even considering it.
"I ask myself that regularly, but crazy or not her plans tend to work. Even if it fails it might buy us some time to get out," said Wyatt reasonably.
"Alright, follow my lead," said Clark. With that he used his super speed and rammed the creature back into the wall on the opposite side of the basement and pinned him. Wyatt quickly yelled out "Now Tal!"
Talia quickly took out the Trans Medal and took aim. 'Lord, I'm the last one to be asking you for anything but please let this shot be fast and accurate,' she said to herself. With her other hand she called on her telekinetic powers and fired off the orb sending it towards the creature and forced it down the creature's throat.
It immediately stopped fighting and grabbed its throat, which was chocking on the device. "Come on!" yelled Clark deciding not to wait around and made for the stairs with Wyatt and Talia not far behind.
They barely reached the kitchen when the Zoanoid leapt through the floor and knocked Clark aside and pinned the cousins to the wall. It roared triumphantly and was about to take off their heads when the creature roared again this time in pain and began gripping its side. Talia and Wyatt watched as the beast stumbled about in pain with blood leaking from under its hands.
Then as abruptly as it began the creature became silent and still. Its arms became limp and out of the top of its skull came the end of a spike-like horn. Then came a sickening sound of flesh being cut; out of the creature's sides came spike-like swords; each of them dripping with blood and gore. The blades cut slits in the creature's sides then retracted back into the corpse. Then violently from the slits came the came two gauntleted hands that sprayed the kitchen with gore. They then reached up to the creature's head and grabbed the jaw and skull at the mouth and separated them with a sickening crunch and tore the neck in half. The hands then dropped the skull and jaw and grabbed the torn neck and pulled it apart splitting it in half and then dropping it in a bloody mess.
"It worked. He's alive," said Talia as she looked at the warrior before him. His armor dripping blood and gore, his eyes glowing yellow, and then when the last of the dead Zoanoid fell away jets of steam streamed out of his vents.
"Mack, you're alive, how?" asked Clark as he got back to his feet.
Mack said nothing but only turned and went out into the next room. Talia could see what was going to happen when she saw him walk out of the room. Her dad had the same walk whenever he had to liquidate a group of advisors. "We better get out the mops; this is going to be messy."
"You really think you can stop me? Charmed One or not you are nothing more than a bug under my feet compared to me," goaded Isobel as she and Piper traded blasts.
"I may be a bug lady but at least I don't have to use an innocent girl to survive!" yelled Piper as she fired off another blast.
Isobel was about to retort when the Zoanoid attacking Cleo yelled out in pain and collapsed paralyzed and then burst into green flame. Isobel turned to see standing there like a ghost out the past was the Guyver.
"No! You died! I killed you!" yelled Isobel.
The Zoanoids stopped their fighting and backed away from the other League members. Suddenly, one of them roared and moved to attack but before he could even get close a sword flew through the air and pierced its skull and killing the beast instantly.
The Guyver turned to see Talia standing in the door frame between the kitchen and hall along with Wyatt. She looked like she was at a sporting event waiting for it to start and Wyatt just looked like he had entered a vipers' nest. The Guyver gave her a nod then extended his blades and began hacking his way through the Zoanoids. Within minutes he left a trail littered with cut-up Zoanoids. He then turned to Wyatt and said in a rather gruff drawl "Crystals."
Phoebe turned to her nephew, "Wyatt, the Zoanoids have crystals in their bodies. Orb them out!" Without another word Wyatt raised his hand and closed his eyes and instantly the crystals inside the Zoanoids littered the floor along with one from the dead Zoanoid that the Guyver erupted from. The Zoanoids collapsed paralyzed. The Guyver's hand then glowed as he charged up his pressure cannon. He then fired it at the crystals destroying them instantly and with no crystals the Zoanoids burst into flames. The Guyver then let out a sigh and collapsed to the ground.
"Uncle Leo!" yelled Talia calling over her uncle who was tending to the injured. He rushed over and gave him a once over.
"I can't be sure but I think he's exhausted. He must have been running on pure adrenalin and just burned out," said the Elder.
"More than likely he'll be out for a while and I think we can all use a rest," said Michael.
Talia looked around seeing every one agreeing but noticed a disturbing fact. "Where's Isobel?"
The Charmed Ones and the League looked around and saw that the witch was gone, and so were any answers they could've gotten out of her.