Authors Note: I'm very sorry for taking so long with this chapter. I've been under a lot of stress lately but I promise to have this story complete by early September.
Dr. Murphy lead Claire and her companions the way through the narrow, metal corridors of the facility, bound for Wesker's quarters with hopes of intercepting him before he could escape. If they were lucky, Chris and the others would join them and bring down the madman once and for all.
But Wesker wasn't the only thing on Claire's mind. There was still so much she wanted to tell Steve and if things didn't go the way she wanted, she would never get the chance again.
She withdrew the negative thoughts from her head, telling herself to focus on the present situation of reaching her brother. There would be plenty of time to reconcile with Steve once the crisis was over.
Desperate and quick, the team strode down one last corridor, turned around a bend…..and stopped dead in their tracks, their eyes full of shock.
Wesker stood over the sprawled, unconscious bodies of Chris, Jill and Barry just outside his quarters. Their faces were bruised and bloody. He faced them, a sick, sadistic smile plastered on his face.
"Welcome, my friends," Wesker said softly.
"Wesker!" Claire hissed fiercely. "What did you do to them?"
"Oh, don't worry, my dear," Wesker said. "There merely unconscious. I wanted your brother to live long enough to see you die."
Wesker switched his attention to Steve and Dr. Murphy and wore a look of anger.
"So Dr. Murphy, you have betrayed me," Wesker said simply. "I half-expected as much. It will cost you your life, and the lives of your loved ones."
Dr. Murphy shuddered but she stood her ground, refusing to let Wesker frighten her anymore.
"You won't get away this time, Wesker," Leon snarled, his handgun clutched in his hand.
Wesker let out a mocking cackle that made Claire's skin crawl.
"We'll see about that, you insolent bastard!" Wesker said.
Leon raised his handgun but it was already too late. Wesker dashed toward the group with inhuman speed, swatted the gun from Leon's grip and delivered a shoving kick into his torso.
Leon felt the wind rush out of his chest as he was knocked right off his feet and hit the ground back first.
A split second later, Wesker seized Rebecca by the neck and tossed her aside like a ragdoll, sending her skidding across the metal floor before she could even raise her weapon.
Claire tried to aim her MP5 but almost immediately, Wesker snatched it from her grip and snapped the weapon in half with his own two hands like a twig. Wesker's hand stuck out like a cobra, grabbed Claire by the neck and lifted her off the ground.
Dr. Murphy was too stunned to do anything to help, her feet glued to the spot she stood upon. But Steve on the other hand would not allow Wesker to harm the girl he loved.
"No!" Steve cried.
As quick as lightning, Steve came up behind Wesker, seized him by the shoulder and turned him around. Before Wesker could react, Steve lashed out with his fist and struck Wesker so hard across the face his sunglasses flew off and clattered to the floor.
Wesker grunted and staggered for a moment, releasing his grip on Claire who gasped for breath as she scrambled to her feet.
Wesker glared at Steve with furious red eyes. He licked the interior of his mouth and spat out a tooth mixed with blood.
Enraged and without a word, Wesker grabbed Steve by the collar of his shirt and slammed him violently into the wall, caving in the thin metal plating. Steve retaliated by slamming Wesker back into another wall with the same result.
Both of them grappled for a few seconds with Claire watching in awe before Wesker drew his fist back and punched Steve hard in the jaw, sending the young man flying a good ten feet and skidding across the floor.
"You may be superhuman boy," Wesker snarled as he crept towards Steve. "But even that will not save you."
Steve got up and rubbed his sore mouth with the back of his hand, eyes gleaming.
"You'll find I'm full of surprises!" Steve retorted.
Wesker smirked as he nonchalantly stood his ground, waiting for Steve to make the next move. He completely ignored Claire behind him as she watched the battle.
Steve charged forward, drew back his fist and swung hard but Wesker caught it and back fisted the boy across the face with his good hand. Steve staggered but didn't fall as he quickly swung his other fist. Wesker ducked, smiling with vile amusement as he dodged Steve's blows.
"Your too cocky for your own good, Steve," Wesker said.
In a heartbeat, Wesker caught Steve's fist once more and twisted it. Claire heard Steve cry out in agony, as well as the sickening crunch of bone breaking. Wesker released the boy, who hunched over clutching his broken wrist, his face grimaced with pain but Claire saw Steve's expression soften and his wrist snap back into place as it repaired itself almost instantly thanks to his regenerative powers.
Briefly, Wesker looked surprised but his typical indifferent expression returned quickly.
"So, your regenerative powers work faster than I imagined," Wesker said. "You are full of surprises, my boy."
Seeing Wesker had let his guard down, Steve rushed forward as quick as a rabbit, still hunched over and plowed into Wesker headfirst, knocking him to the ground. Again and again, Steve pummeled Wesker's face with his bare hands before being knocked off by a well placed kick in the chest.
The two combatants stood up. Wesker wiped his bleeding nose but strangely, he didn't look angry. In fact he looked joyful somehow.
"Let's make things more interesting," Wesker said softly.
Wesker reached into his pocket and fished out a small, metallic cylinder with a red button on top. He pressed it.
A high pitched alarm sounded off and red lights hanging from the ceiling blinked brightly. A female, monotonous voice emitted from the speakers.
"Warning! Warning! The self-destruct sequence has been activated. T-Minus 5 minutes till detonation. All personal evacuate immediately."
Claire felt her blood run cold and old memories return to her. It was the same as the Rockfort Island base with its own built in self-destruct mechanism.
Steve's eyes widened with realization that he couldn't waste any time in his fight with Wesker if he were to ever see the sun again and be free.
"By the time I've killed you, I'll have more than enough time to escape," Wesker said smiling, feeling as if he had already won.
Claire looked at Dr. Murphy who looked right back as if to say "I didn't know!" Claire sighed hopelessly.
Leon and Rebecca stirred and got up, wearing looks of worry. Apparently they heard the self-destruct system's announcement and how long they had before they would die.
Steve forced himself and his pounding heart to settle down, knowing that panic would only worsen the situation.
Wesker calmly craned his neck towards the boy as he circled around him, looking for an opening to strike. Steve stayed tense, knowing Wesker was trying a different approach. With precious time draining away and no quick way to end the battle, Steve found himself out of options until he spotted a fusebox behind Wesker. It must have been for the emergency lights and power to the bio-lab.
His swift thinking was cut off by Wesker dashing forward, his fist drawn back. Steve immediately ducked and dodged the blow as Wesker barreled past him. He turned around to face Wesker as he focused back on Steve. Steve backed up, positioning himself just in front of the fusebox. Wesker furrowed his eyes as he charged forward one last time.
In the split second before the madmans fist made contact, Steve leapt to the right as Weskers hand plunged into the fusebox.
Wesker let out a shrilling cry of pain as his body shimmered and shook. Bright, blue bolts of electricity danced around his body, slightly singing his clothes and exhausting puffs of white smoke. Finally, the fuse box burst in a shower of sparks and burnt metal, sending Wesker flying into the wall back first and sliding to the ground. He didn't move.
Steve would have taken a breather if the facility wasn't set to explode. He heard movement to his right and saw Chris, Jill and Barry getting up. Chris was the first to see Steve and wore a mixed look of relief and puzzlement.
"Steve...?" Chris muttered
Without a word, Steve approached Chris and helped him to his feet.
"I haven't got time to explain," Steve said. "We have to get out of here now or we're all going to die."
"Follow me," Dr. Murphy said quickly. "I know a shortcut out of the facility."
After forming up, the team fell in behind Dr. Murphy as the self-destruct mechanism lights continued to flash on and off, the alarms still blaring.