Here it is... the finale... finally... please enjoy... next time, it's an MST on my DA page... seriously, look up MadManMatt64 on DeviantArt. Please?
Chapter 14: Endgame
Jack Ryan was never what one would call a coward. After all, he couldn't really be considered one after everything that he's been through. But despite that, everything that was happening was starting to weigh down on him, and he was admittedly getting a little frightened. After all, one could only take so much of feral cat creatures, people coming back from the dead and God knows what else. And that wasn't even getting into the fact that he was working with a Big Daddy now. The loud stomping of the suit was something that didn't bring back past memories, and it took all his will not to run away from it. He was thankful that the whale sounds weren't there though.
The sewers were just as dank as before, if not even more so. The scent of assorted muck and grime was all around them, and Jack actually wished that he had Porter's helmet to block out the smell, it was that bad. Still, he pressed on, memories of running from the beasts that Leo and his girlfriend had turned into, now helping to guide him to where he needed to go.
As thoughts about what to do streamed into Jack's head, Charles Milton Porter trudged along behind him crouching slightly, as his tall height was restricted by cramped sewers. He wasn't exactly happy being back inside the suit, but he was glad for the protection from what would surely be a difficult battle. And a companion wasn't exactly a bad thing either. But then again, Porter didn't exactly know what to make of Jack. He seemed like just some man who came across Rapture and escaped, but what he didn't understand was why he turned out so... good. He had seen what happened to Rapture after the fall, and he thought it would turn anyone into a cold son of a bitch. But not Jack. It actually seemed to make him even more good. It wasn't that Porter didn't trust Jack, far from it. It was just that he didn't understand the why around him. Why adopt the Little Sisters? Why help these people?
He would've harped on these thoughts for longer, but he then bumped into Jack, tripping him up a little bit. Porter mumbled a halfhearted apology but the mic didn't pick it up. But then he asked, "Are we here?"
Jack paused to look at his surroundings for a moment, then said, "Yeah... we're here. What, you didn't notice the giant hole in the wall?"
Porter was confused for a moment before turning over to the wall and seeing a large rectangular hole in it, the leftover of Jack's moment of panic. Porter chuckled and said, "I guess not. So, what we're looking for is down in here then?"
"Yep.", Jack said, stepping forward and pumping his shotgun, "Remember, don't kill the cats. Use the Hypnotize plasmid on them, and if it wears off, keep using it."
"Right.", Porter said as a green glob appeared in his left hand and a rivet gun was drawn to his right.
"And Suchong. Don't kill Suchong. He's mine.", the shorter man said as fire welled up in his hand.
"You got a grudge against him?", the Big Daddy asked. He knew that not many people liked Suchong, but he wanted to hear the reason as to why he needed to die first.
"Like you wouldn't believe.", Jack said, not saying anything else and instead moving forward into the hall leading to the lab.
Porter decided not to press the issue and followed Jack inside the short hallway, trying to make his steps as light as possible, for fear of detection from the other side of the door. When they reached it, Jack put a finger to his lips, to which Porter nodded (well, bobbed the upper portion of his body up and down) in response. And with that, Jack turned the handle, and slid the door open carefully, slowly. He didn't know if anyone was up or not, but if they weren't he wanted to be able to get the drop on them.
When the door opened fully, they both peaked inside to see that in the room there was... nothing. Just a laboratory, and the door that Jack recognized as the one that Leo and Aeris had appeared out of. But there was another door here now. It looked rather conspicuous as well, considering the sterile and simple design of the room. It was a tall door with Gothic designing, and a large skull on the top. It was made from red and black wood, and it looked foreboding above all else. Yet what really concerned the two was the fact that the door didn't seem to lead to anywhere. It just stood there in the center of the room, nowhere near what could even remotely be considered a wall. It gave them the chills just looking at it.
But before they could enter, Jack's ears picked up a faint sound from above. It was a tinking sound, like … like hooks attaching to a ceiling. Quickly, Jack aimed the shotgun off and fired a blast, a cry of pain from on high indicating that the buckshot had hit it's mark. And surely enough, when the cry was heard, Charles fell to the floor, grabbing his right arm when he reached the ground. He looked up at Jack and said, "That wasn't fair! I wasn't gonna hurt you, I wasn't!"
It was then that he noticed that among the people in the room, there was also a Big Daddy. He scrambled to the nearest wall and said, "See! I don't wanna kill ya! 'Sides, it ain't worth toeing it with a Big Daddy!
Despite Charles claims, Jack aimed his shotgun at the Splicer and said, "Give me a reason. Give me one good reason to keep you alive."
Charles raised his arms in front of his face as a meager means of protection and shouted out, "'Cuz I know how to save them cats, I do!"
That caught Jack's attention, making him lower his weapon slightly. Porter then walked up to Jack and said, "Should we believe him."
Jack thought it over a while, shook his head, and said, "I have no idea. I came across this guy before, and got be pretty good. He didn't seem to hesitate working for Suchong then, so I don't believe he's hesitating now."
"So, what do we do?", Porter questioned, looking down at the trembling Spider Splicer.
After a pause, Jack made up his mind and said, "Keep an eye on him while I go and check something, okay?"
Porter nodded and pressed the firing end of his rivet gun to Charles' skull, saying, "Don't move. I don't want to hurt you."
Jack, meanwhile, had went over to the door where the corrupt versions of Leo and Aeris had exited from last time he was here. He slowly opened it and looked inside. It took a while for his eyes to adjust to the pitch black, but there were no cats inside. Only dust, scratches, and nothing else. He sighed and closed the door, saying, "Okay. Porter, you can let him go."
Reluctantly, Porter moved the rivet gun away from the Splicer's head as Jack pointed his shotgun at the Charles, and said, "Now then, explain what's going on here."
Charles nodded, "Okay. So, I came here because Mr. Suchong needed an assistant, he did. He wanted a lackey that wouldn't ask too many questions, but was smart enough to follow orders, and since I was the most intelligent Splicer he could find, I was chosen. He had me hunt down people, and in exchange, he would give me the sweetest tasting ADAM I ever had. It was a sweet deal, it was. But... now I'm scared! Them cats are just the start, they are!"
"What's that supposed to mean?", Jack asked, wondering what exactly the Splicer was saying.
"Suchong's gonna poison people, he is! He and some bloke in black are going to make every animal like those cats! They're completely loyal, and they're practically indestructible, they are! I don't want to die down here! ADAM ain't worth it!"
Jack was rather taken aback by this. A Splicer rejecting ADAM? That had to easily be the most odd thing he had ever heard. So, he asked, "Why? Isn't ADAM important to you?"
"Not when it comes to mass killings it don't!", Charles said, "I want ADAM, but I didn't like killing for it! I stole the stuff off the dead! Can't stand the killing, I can't."
"Then why kidnap people, then murder them?", Porter asked.
"I didn't kill 'em!", Charles pleaded, "I bought 'em here, and when Suchong killed 'em, all I did was mutilate 'em a little! I was only doing what I was told to do, I was! Don't kill me, please! I can help, I can!"
Jack and Porter looked at each other for a moment. Yes, this Splicer was probably lying to them, and that could totally backfire on them. But it was the only lead they had at this point, and if the Splicer was telling the truth, then this could made easier on them. So, with a nod, they both lowered their guns from the Splicer and Porter said, "Easy, easy. We're not going to kill you."
"Y-you aren't?", Charles said, looking up.
"Nope.", Jack said, "If you can help, then why kill you."
"Thank you sirs, thank you!", Charles said, standing up with a slight limp, "You won't regret this you won't!"
"But know this.", Jack said, "You make one wrong move...", he brought up his left hand, now crackling with electricity, "You're done. You got me?"
Charles gulped, "U-Umm... yes sir. I'll keep that in mind, I will..."
"Good.", Jack said, lowering his arm. He then pointed to the large door in the center of the room, and asked, "Now, what's that door over there for?
"Oh, that's the door to Hell, it is.", Charles explained as though it were the most obvious thing in the world.
The two Rapture veterans stood speechless for a while, before Porter spoke up, saying, "You're joking."
"Nope.", Charles said, "It's the portal to the underworld."
Jack and Porter looked at each other again, the Big Daddy saying, "That's not possible. How could a door to Hell exist? Why would something like this exist?"
"It's the man in the black robe, it is.", Charles stated, "He's got an entire workforce in Hell making that plasmid. It's big."
Jack was silent for most of this explanation, but now he said, "I don't believe it. Even if that is a door to Hell, how could he get demons working for him?"
"He sold testicles to 'em, from what I heard.", Charles said.
Jack was going to question this, but then he ignored it. He suddenly felt that this was a plot point of an incredibly bad story that was written by a 17 year old in pajamas who was too lazy to update his story for a large amount of time.
Pushing that incredibly specific thought out of his mind, Jack then said, "So, what are we in for then?"
"Oh, lots 'o demons and things like that.", the Splicer said, "Nothing the three of us can't handle, I don't think."
The other two weren't so sure about that though. Demons? Unlikely, but that could prove to be a problem. After all, they were only men. They were heavily armed and armored men, but they were men nonetheless. But then again, they had both taken on a small army's worth of Splicers, so why couldn't they take on otherworldly creatures? It would be just like before, except with more fire, less water, and no Vita-Chambers to make them alive again if they were to kick the bucket in any form. More or less the same.
So, with courage in their hearts, Jack opened the portal, and stepped through. And just as suspected, even though the door itself seemed to lead to nowhere, when opened, it lead to a dark, yet surprisingly warm stone corridor that lead into an area full of light. Yet it wasn't a warm and inviting light, far from it in fact. It was a blistering red light that seemed to exude heat and discomfort. For once, Jack showed some hesitance before noticing that Porter was starting to walk ahead of him, the hulking figure undeterred by the scorching heat.
Jack pushed on, along with Charles behind him, trying to look as small as possible while having his hooks clenched firmly in his hands. Jack and Porter too were at the ready, with the both of them toting machine guns. The air felt stagnate and stuffy, and from time to time, there was a distinctive clink-clank or bang, as though machinery was being worked on, and it was occasionally punctuated by the crack of a whip. Then, when they reached the end of the hallway, both Jack and Porter had to stop, amazed at what they were seeing. For they were on a balcony, and below them, was the most demonic factory imaginable.
Everywhere there were souls of evil people working wearily at the wicked assembly line of what appeared to be a vile liquid that looked like a mix of blood and bile. All the workers were chained to the machines, and were being supervised by large demonic creatures that held whips, obviously the slave drivers. And overseeing everything, clear across from where the three were standing, stood an oily Chinese man, a sinister looking figure in a black robe, and Leo and Aeris (THEY WERE IN THIS STORY TOO!), still looking wild.
Jack would've preferred to have taken the subtle and quiet approach, but this nice and simple way of getting to the cats was made impossible by the fact that a voice Jack didn't readily recognize had started to talk to him. "Hello there Mr. Ryan.", the voice said, "I've heard much about you."
"Who are you?", Jack called out, making sure that his machine gun was cocked.
The voice chuckled, "I'm Johnny Evilguy. No doubt you heard about what I'm planning from that... traitor behind you."
If it were at all possible, Charles seemed to become even smaller, and mumbled out, "I-It isn't right, it isn't..."
The Splicer was ignored as Johnny continued, "So, you're here to save the cats and stop my plans then?"
"At first it was just to save the cats.", Jack said, raising his left hand, which had since grown honeycombs, "But now that I know what you're planning, I'm going to stop you as well."
"Big talk, from someone like you.", Evilguy said with a large sneer, "I don't think I'll even grace that with a response...", he then yawned in the most deliberately insulting way possible and said, "I think I'll go and get some rest... Suchong, you know what to do."
"Of course.", said the malicious geneticist before calling over across the room, "You'll never win, Jack! Not when these cats and demons are on my side!"
"...We'll see.", Jack said before running down nearby stairs, machine gun at the ready and bees crawling along his left hand. Following close behind him was Charles, more out of cowardice than courage. Then was Porter who, with a guttural roar that only a Big Daddy could pull off, jumped off of the balcony and slammed his drill hard into the ground, causing a shockwave that knocked a couple of demons off their feet.
Jack soon was by Porter's side, and before they knew it, both of them were standing back to back, the human stinging as many hellspawn as possible with Insect Swarm before pumping them full of machine gun rounds, and the Big Daddy peppering his opponents with shotgun shells, punching out any that got too close.
Charles meanwhile, had decided to do something much less deadly in his mind. As he was a Spider Splicer, he was able to contort his body in such a way that he was barely an inch off the ground before scuttling off in the direction of a certain Chinese scientist and his two test subjects. It would take a while, but he wanted to at least help in some way without getting his ass kicked.
Jack and Porter on the other hand were having a handful with the veritable army of demons facing them. At first, the two seemed to have the upper hand, as the variety of weapons and Plasmids seemed to be keeping their foes on their toes. But then it seemed as though they were coming out of the woodwork, and the varieties seemed to be more and more difficult. There were the low level ones, ones that could breath fire, ones with tough shells, snakes, fiery bats, it looked as though just about everything was out to kill them.
Jack was starting to crack after about ten minutes of fighting. They seemed to have unlimited reinforcements, while Jack and Porter were running low on ammo and Eve. They could only potentiall hold out for about another ten minutes if they were lucky, but more and more, that possibility seemed to be waning. But then, he had an idea. Over the shouting of the opposing army, he said, "Porter! Free as many of these prisoners as you can!"
"Are you crazy!?", Porter cried back after fending off a fire breathing demon with his drill, "They'll probably kill us after we kill these things! They're evil!"
"We don't have much of a choice, and we don't have time to argue!", Jack called out before firing a crossbow bolt between the eyes of an unsuspecting snake demon, "Just do it, I'll cover you!"
Although still uncertain about the idea, Porter knew that this was possibly the only way to survive the onslaught. So, he ran quickly to the closest worker and broke the chain that bound him to the machine before quickly moving on. The first prisoner looked to see that he was free from his shackles, and with a crooked grin, tore a pipe off one of the mechanisms, and attacked the closest demon with a sort of malicious delight.
This seemed to be the general pattern of Porter's short campaign. Some would stand and fight like the first, others would run, and more still would just keep working as though nothing had happened, completely broken by their years of torture. Still, a sizable army of their own had been created, and now they had a fighting chance against all the things that Johnny and Suchong had set on Jack and Porter.
And speaking of Suchong, he looked over the chaos that was happened with a dissatisfied look. This hadn't been in the plan, or at least not in the plan that he knew about. These two were proving to be a thorn in the scientist's side, and he didn't appreciated thorns. "You two are more trouble than you're worth...", he said to the cats, who were both at his side, hissing and spitting at the ground below, wanting to join in on the action and sink their teeth into something. But they were distracted by this, so they didn't notice when a certain Splicer made it's way onto the platform. He took a deep breath, slowly made his way behind Suchong, and raised his hook high above his head, ready to strike. Then, he swung down, catching Suchong on the shoulder and making him squeal in pain. He turned around quickly, and with a look of fury said, "You two! Kill him!"
Feral Leo and Feral Aeris immediately went on the offensive with Charles, who decided that it would be best to run away. After all, he had only intended to kill Suchong and lead the cats to safety, but then he had to go and botch his own plan. He jumped off the balcony and onto the floor, right in front of a demon who was formerly on his way to kill Jack and Porter, but now had chosen the Splicer as his new target.
Charles clawed at the creature with his hooks, but he missed completely, and it was immediately grabbed by the demon. He was about to break more than a few bones before the two cats landed on top of it and gored it with their claws. It cried in pain before falling down and breathing it's last. Charles didn't stick around to see this though, and decided to take another crack at Suchong. As Feral Leo and Feral Aeris continued ripping at the creature, Charles climbed back up the way he came, and heard Suchong cry, "Dammit, not him! I told you to go after the Splicer! The Splicer damn you!"
"I suppose they still can think a little bit for themselves, I do.", Charles said as he climbed over the railing.
"You again!", he shouted. His left arm with dripping with blood, and the wound itself was being compressed by Suchong's good hand. He looked like he as going to blow a gasket, and he looked as though he were trying to grind his teeth to dust if his grimace was evidence enough. He then said, "You traitor! I'm going to kill you myself!"
He then pulled out a rather large pistol from under his labcoat, and shot at Charles. Luckily, it was too large a caliber to be handled with one hand, let alone by a wormy scientist, and the gun broke his good arm, leaving Suchong crippled and crying in pain. Unluckily however, he had hit Charles in the chest, piercing his heart and ensuring his death. Charles dropped one of his hooks and fell to his knees. His mask then fell off, revealing his scarred and deformed face. He was breathing heavily as he started to bleed out, and he looked up to see Suchong smiling through his pain. The Chinese scientist then bend down on one knee and said, "You see Charles... you lost. What were you thinking? All you had to do was serve me and get ADAM. That was all. And now, you're dead. What have you got to say about that? Hmm?"
Charles looked into Suchong's eyes, and saw every single aspect of the man's personality through them. The hatred, the greed, the lack of empathy... and he hated the look in those eyes... and he knew that he was the only one right now that could stop his hatred and greed... so, with the last of his strength, he swung his hook into Suchong's neck. A look of surprise was on Suchong's face as he felt the sharp hook dig into his trachea, and the quick pull that soon would either choke him, or drown him in his own blood. The last words he heard before the darkness took him were, "I say... I win..."
And then, it seemed as though the tide was turning in favor of Jack and Porter. The demons seemed to be getting progressively weaker, and their numbers were getting fewer. Soon, it was Jack and his army of freed souls that were winning the day, and not a moment too soon. Jack was now stuck to his wrench, having used up all his ammo for everything else, and Porter's drill had quickly run out of fuel, leaving it just as useful as the wrench. When the last demon was killed, cheers of adulation and victory echoed throughout the demonic factory. The souls, rather than attempt to kill their saviors as Porter had predicted, now looked over to Jack to see what they could do next. At first, he was confused by this, but then decided to take advantage of this and order, "Find the grey and pink cats! We came here for them, and we need to get them out! Alive!"
The freed slaves obeyed and immediately set out to find Leo and Aeris. Jack and Porter decided to look as well, and eventually they found themselves on the platform that Suchong and Evilguy were overseeing everything from, only to find the dead bodies of Charles and Suchong. Jack sighed and said, "Damn... the Splicer killed him..."
"I'll take him out of here...", Porter said, picking up the dead Splicer and putting him over his shoulder with little difficulty, "He doesn't deserve to be in a place like this..."
Jack agreed and watched as Porter took the body of Charles out of factory and into the door they went through to get there. Jack then took a deep breath and thought to himself, "Okay... the factory is gone... now all I need to do is find the cats, and kill that guy in the robe... but I gotta find them first. Where would they be though?"
Thinking to himself, Jack looked over railing and down onto the factory floor. He scanned the ground for a moment before seeing a pink... something go around a corner. The gears clicked immediately, and Jack instantly started to run down the stairs and to the corner. A few of the souls noticed this and followed behind him, acting as a sort of backup. Jack didn't mind. After all, why not except help from people willing to give it?
When Jack reached the corner, he looked around it and saw that it lead into a long corridor, and at the end was Evilguy and the cats, going through a door marked 'ESCAPE ROUTE: ONLY USE IN CASE OF GOODY TWO-SHOES RUINING YOUR PLANS.'
Jack didn't like that phrasing, so he decided to interrupt the man in the black robe from opening the door, calling out, "Hold it right there!"
Evilguy sighed and turned around, facing Jack and his backup. He chuckled to himself and said, "My, aren't you the clever one... freeing all the souls. Not something someone would usually risk doing."
"I'm not a normal someone then.", Jack said, clenching his wrench tightly in his hand.
"Yes, yes...", Evilguy said with a yawn, "I've heard it all. Now, if you'll excuse me..."
Evilguy turned to leave again, and in desperation, Jack threw the wrench at Johnny, knocking him upside the head and making him fall over. Jack then attempted to clear the distance before the mastermind behind everything got up, he was then blocked by Leo and Aeris, still under the control of Feral. Johnny then got back up, and with a look of anger said, "...I was going to let you live Ryan... but I can see now that you'll never leave me alone... Leo, Aeris? Kill."
On that command, both cats body checked Jack and knocked him over. The souls beside him attempted to help him, but they were immediately knocked back by Feral Leo and Feral Aeris. Their full attention was now on Jack and both had their claws poised to strike him while he was vulnerable. Desperation struck Jack once again, and he cried out, "Leo, stop! It's Jack, remember me!?"
He didn't know if he was right, but he thought he saw Leo hesitate. The claws retracted a little. Aeris however, was much more gung-ho, and was about to slash out Jack's throat when he said, "Aeris, you're not like this! You don't kill!"
Of course, he knew nothing about this girl, but he felt like that was good enough to break through to her. Luckily, he was right. She didn't go through with it, and instead seemed to be struggling to get her paw away from his throat. They both did actually. Jack was able to use this opportunity to throw them off and get up, charging at Johnny, who unwisely didn't choose to escape. Now, it was Evilguy on the ground, and Jack had both his hands around his neck, shouting, "You did this! You did all of this! It wasn't enough just to ruin people's lives, but you had to rule everything too!? You're fucking dead, you son of a bitch!"
Evilguy seemed to smile through the pain and said, "Either way... I still won... they'll... never be the same again..."
Jack remained silent and spied his wrench nearby. He let go of Evilguy with one of his hands and grabbed the wrench. He then raised it above his head and said, "...We'll see.", before whacking Evilguy across the face, knocking him out.
He stood up once again, and looked over his shoulder. Leo and Aeris seemed to be confused about everything, and looked somewhat afraid as well. Jack attempted to go near them, but they both let out a loud snarl at him, telling him that he needed to back off. So he did, backing away, and looking right at them. Eventually, Porter showed up and called across the corridor to him, saying, "Jack, I'm here!"
"Good.", Jack said, "Get Hypnosis ready. I don't like it, but it's the only way to make them placid."
Porter grunted in affirmation and summoned a green glob into his left hand, throwing one at Leo, and another at Aeris. A green aura appeared around them, and they both appeared to become more calm and somewhat content. Porter called to them and they came over, following him up the stairs and to the door that lead to the underground lab. Jack followed quickly behind, having grabbed a hold of Evilguy so that he could take him to justice back on the surface. But before he left forever, when he made it up to the balcony that would lead to the corridor that would lead to the mortal realm, he looked over all the souls he had freed, and ordered, "Destroy this place."
As he turned around, he could hear the machinery being destroyed and the laughter of the souls at the general destruction.
Before he knew it, he was back in the lab. When he noticed this, he took a deep breath, and shut the door behind him. He then put down Johnny, activated Incinerate, snapped at the door, and burned it to a crisp. He felt pleased with himself. He saved the cats, stopped an evil plan, and Suchong was killed. It felt good to have taken care of everything.
As he reflected, he noticed that Porter was strapping the cats onto gurneys. He was going to ask why, but then he noticed that the green aura was disappearing, and went to help Porter strap in Leo. They weren't a moment too soon, as Leo's aura disappeared right when he was strapped in. The both of them were now struggling against their bonds, and it was indeed a rather pitiful sight. Still, they were here to help, and Jack stepped beside Aeris, holding out his right hand over her head. "You sure this is going to work?", Porter asked uncertainly.
"Tenenbaum said that it would.", Jack replied, "She told me that the plasmid I used to free the Little Sisters was meant to expunge ADAM from someone's system, and since their transformation was tied to a plasmid that they haven't overdosed on, it should work... hopefully."
"And what do we do if it doesn't work, Jack?", the Big Daddy asked.
"...We hope that God forgives us.", Jack said flatly.
Porter understood, and decided to stand back, letting Jack take care of everything. He observed closely and Jack closed his eyes and took deep breaths. Soon, his hands took on a pure white glow, his arteries and veins being the source of most of the light. Then, he slowly placed his hands on her cheek and forehead. At first she growled and struggled, but the growls turned into sounds akin to moaning. Then, Jack removed his hands, and almost immediately Aeris threw up the red and gold substance known as ADAM. Slowly, her body turned back to normal. Her eyes returned to their normal blue color, her figure returned to her, her back straitened, and she looked just like herself again.
Aeris felt tired. She also felt like she was ran over by a truck... 10 times. Her mouth tasted like sick, and it... well, it made her feel sick. She groaned as her eyes started to open, however her vision was fogged and she couldn't see much. But she could her noises from beside her. They were muffled due to her dulled senses, but she could hear growling and hissing. For some reason, only one word came to her lips from those sounds alone, "...Leo..."
She then heard a loud stomping sound, and a yellow light started to shine down on her. A tinny voice then said, "She's awake Jack."
"Good.", said another voice, "Then Tenenbaum was right. That should mean that he should come to any minute now."
Aeris only barely understood what was happening. But slowly, her senses started to return. She could feel that her arms and legs were strapped to something, and her whole body felt chilly. She then started to form more words, "W-Where am I... what's going on...?"
"It'll be okay, miss.", said the tinny voice, "Just relax. You'll be back to normal in a few minutes."
Minutes? Well, at least it wasn't longer. She did feel pretty tired... maybe a nap would do her some good... so she shut her eyes again, and fell into a quiet slumber.
"So, how do they look?", Porter said, standing vigil over the two cats.
"They're okay.", Jack said, unstrapping Leo and hoisting him over his shoulder, "You wouldn't mind bringing her back up, would you?"
"No, not at all.", Porter said as he unstrapped Aeris and carried her bridal style.
As they made to leave, Jack paused and asked, "Hey... what did you do with the Splicer?"
Porter was silent for a moment before saying, "He's in the van. He'll stink, but you can't exactly give a person a decent burial in the sewer."
Jack shrugged, "Fair enough. Now come on... I never want to see this place again... and my daughters must be hating me right now..."
Porter chuckled, and with that, they left.
The first thing that Leo heard upon waking up was, "Is he going to be okay?", in a very familiar voice. Of course, it didn't register right away as to who's voice it was, but all he knew was that it was someone very close and very dear to him. But then the gears started to turn. The name came to him. "Aeris..."
"Leo!", someone screamed before he felt lips upon his own. He was fully awake at this point, and was returning her kisses in full force, happy to oblige in her want of affection. When they parted, they immediately hugged, and she said, "Leo... I thought we would never see each other like this again..."
"Aeris...", Leo said quietly, "What even happened... all I remember was that shot... and then we were here..."
"...It doesn't matter.", she said, "It just doesn't matter. We're together, and that's all that does matter."
"Yeah...", he agreed, "That is all that matters..."
There was silence for quite some time, before someone with a thick German accent said, "Well... I suppose that answers your question, Miss Aeris?"
Aeris chuckled, "Yeah... sorry about that, Dr. Tenenbaum."
"It's quite alright.", she said sincerely, "Please, enjoy yourselves. I'll be outside."
There was the sound of a door shutting, and with that, enjoy themselves they did...
"So, that's what happened?", Aeris' father asked, "You were kidnapped so that you could be used in an experiment to help take over the entire world?"
"What? Is that so hard to believe, especially considering the guys that rescued us are right behind us?", Leo said, pointing to Jack and Porter, who waved awkwardly at the gathered families.
"Well, I believe them.", Leo's mother said, "You two are welcome in our home at any time."
"Same.", said Aeris' mother in sheer gratitude, "Anything you want, we can give!"
Jack chuckled awkwardly and said, "Erm... well, would you mind giving me a ride up town then? I was supposed to show up at my daughter's wedding a few days back..."
Leo's dad readily took it upon himself to give the favor and said, "Follow me then! To the car!"
Jack laughed a actual laugh before following Leo's father. But before he left, he turned back and said, "I'll be seeing you two later.", and followed the top hatted cat outside and to the car.
There was a slight awkward silence as Porter stood up and said, "I think I should go as well. I've intruded long enough."
"Where will you go though?", Leo asked, genuinely concerned for the man.
"Tenenbaum is going to give me shelter until I can get onto my feet.", he said with a small smile, "You won't be seeing me on the street selling boxes of rocks anytime soon."
At this, Leo and Aeris laughed slightly before they all said goodbye. Porter then left without another word.
Taking the opportunity to speak now that Porter had left, Aeris' father said, "So... now that you're here, what's next?"
Leo and Aeris looked at each other for a moment. She then motioned to her father, before Leo gulped, and turned to him, saying shakily, "W-Well sir... we were... kinda hoping that we could... you know, still be together... a little more... you know, permanently."
Aeris' father gave him an impassive look and said flatly, "What are you implying?"
"U-Umm...", Leo muttered, trying to get words out. He would've kept on muttering had Aeris not nudged him hard in the ribs with her elbow, forcing him to say, "Marriage."
The mothers seemed a little interested in this prospect. The father, however, still looked blank. He then said, "Why would you want to... get married?"
"W-Well...", Leo said, "We... realized that we're not gonna be alive forever... and we've practically been living together like... forever, and we love each other so... we should get married. And we wanted to ask your permission."
Aeris' dad just kept on looking impassive, but after a while, he sighed and said, "Well... I knew this was going to happen eventually... what else can I say but yes?"
"You're saying yes!?", Leo said, completely surprised by this answer.
"See, I told you I wouldn't.", Aeris said, rolling her eyes.
Leo looked to his fiance incredulously, "But it's your dad! He's... like that."
"But he said yes.", Aeris scolded, "Don't make him change his mind."
Leo was about to respond before Aeris' father cleared his throat and said, "Listen to her. She knows what's she's talking about."
Leo chuckled slightly and said, "Uhh... sorry. So... we're getting married!"
Months later, things were looking great. Leo and Aeris found steady and well paying work, and wedding plans were going off without a hitch. But as they were formulating a guest list, something hit Leo, "Hey, have you seen Pantsman, Ternaldo, or Krug?"
"Nope.", Aeris said simply.
Leo was silent before shrugging and saying, "Eh, they're fine."
Elsewhere, somewhere on the frozen tundra of Alaska...
"I think you overshot Ottawa by just a smidge...", Pantsman said angrily to Schwartzen-Cop while the other two munched happily on burgers.
"Yeah, but we have hamburgers, don't we?", the crazy cop responded, biting into his own burger.
Pantsman thought about it for a moment, then said, "Yeah, that is true..."
But back in Toronto, Leo and Aeris' trials had long since passed. Everything was going to be okay.