Full Moon High
Chapter 33: Little Brother in Trouble; Who's the Monster and Who's the Man pt.2
After the debacle involving the Sub-Zero incident, and the arrest of , the company still retained function due to the board of directors. The cryogenics labs were still being run and maintained research for agricultural and food-based products and science. Though military applications were put on ice, so to speak. And as such, it was still being run and maintained, though kept out of the public eye for obvious reasons. There was another reason why it was still running. It was the only way a certain creature could be kept contained and controlled.
The room was dark, save for only one source of light. There were tubes and wires going to that point of the room, as the eerie cold mist covered the floor and only the floor. There was a control console on the other side of the course of light. The source of light in particular was a glass chamber, which was being fed the cryo-fluids and electricity to keep it nice and cold. Not life-threatening cold, but it was enough to put reptiles in a hibernated state of sorts. In which, there was a shadowed lump on the floor, as it seemed to be the only thing in there.
In lab 27, the door hissed and slid open, as two employees were walking in to start the day. As they entered, a cold mist swept over the ground, almost inviting an eerie sense of cold environments. The first occupant that entered was a nineteen year old Asian girl with a slender figure, B cup chest, slim waist, long legs, pale skin, and had black short hair that stuck up straight in the back like a flame flip, with yellow highlights underneath, and two bangs dangling in front of her ears. She wore tight jeans, combat boots, and wore a yellow jacket to keep the cold out off of her, and brown eyes with black eyelash under them. Her name was Miwa Himata, a college girl earning her degree.
Her friend was American born, nineteen years old, and had the same build as her friend, as well as the same outfit. She had short dark brown hair that was cut in a bob hairstyle that touched the top of her neck, brown eyes, and black lipstick. Her name was Dana Clay, a college student earning her degree as well. Though she seemed rather cheesed off, as she stood in the center of the room, in front of a blue glowing chamber, the only source of light in there, as her friend worked at the controls at the back of the room to which she stood back to her friend.
"Can you believe what those pricks said," Dana huffed, as she crossed her arms, looking at the darkened side of the room. "They said no pay raise. They also said that what we do here, our only thing we do here, isn't important enough."
Miwa rolled her eyes around, as she sighed, "You'd think they'd know what was in here. Then they'd be changing their minds."
Dana ran her finger against the glass, the heat of her flesh melting some of the ice into droplets, her eyes staring longingly passed the glass, ignoring her own fair reflection that was cast upon it. She breathed in heavily, her own breath condensing against the clear port hole to Python's inner sanctum.
"You know we had plans right?" She said randomly, her head drooping as she spoke.
Miwa looked up from the coolant valve she was working on and at first raised an eyebrow, before seeing where she was looking.
"Yeah..." she muttered, turning back to the coolant hose and locking the bolts back into place. "I mean first they shut down all VM research, all because of its mutation properties and then - then" she stated her voice getting louder. "They ship me and you to be the mechanics of this stupid cryogenic plant because they didn't want their prize star Johnny Harris to get in the neck" she continued to roar throwing the wrench she was using against the wall where it clanged loudly against a metal pipe, before bouncing off and down into the open grate Miwa was working on.
"Oh in the name of..." the Asian scientist growled, crawling onto her belly and reaching into the hatch and trying to slide her hands through the pipes for the wrench.
"He really was a genius," Dana said forlornly, turning away from the cell door and sliding down it to the floor. "I mean he has done so much for the company and they then - "
"Stick anyone and everyone who ever supported him in this dead end job to swipe that mistake under the rug," Miwa growled, now sticking her head into the grate. "I mean all I did was write the protein sequences for formula 360 through 365. But because I worked directly under him I get the blame too! Me! I mean that idiot Harris threw my work out calling it brute force, but no they now say I made it so little boy genius can keep playing prodigy."
Dana however wasn't listening as she tucked her legs up the padded coat she was wearing, pulling her hood over her face as she buried her face into her knees.
It was than Miwa's ears picked up something, pulling her head out of the grate, she turned to her fellow Professor and saw Dana sniff, but not from the cold.
"Umm Dana?" The scientist did not respond to Miwa's comment, her eyes locked onto her knees.
Miwa sighed and shuffled over to her friends side, sitting next to her. "You weren't in that department when the incident happen, were you?" To which Dana shook her head, a tear rolling down her eye.
"We were dating... you see... And well I called chaining him up and not trying to help him a short sighted act... and..."
Miwa blinked, never seeing Dana like this. "And what?" She asked.
"I called Flint Stagg... Ferris dad you see, a short sight Neanderthal, who didn't know real genius if it bit him in his nonexistence dick."
"You did what!?"
"Yeah I know..." Dana said with a half chuckle and half sniff. "It just came out and well..."
Miwa wrapped her arm around Dana and gave her a shake. "Hey don't worry..." she looked about checking no one was around. "And between you and me, making a functioning mutagenic is pretty much the definition of genius to me."
Dana froze as she looked about herself, her eyes wide with fright. "Is it safe... you know... saying that?"
Miwa shrugged. "I'll just loop the camera footage later, plus everyone else is up in that warm lunch room... jerks."
Dana sighed and sat back down. "They really are... but you seriously think his work is genius as well?"
"Oh heck yeah," Miwa claimed. "I mean to be able to so easily blend genetics on that level, you think Steven fucking Hawking's could handle that!?"
"Well he is a theoretical physicist."
Miwa grinned, punching the smaller Dana on the arm. "Not the point Dana."
Three Days Later
Dana made her way through the office section of Eco-Corp Cryogenics, glancing back over her shoulder as she checked the darkened corridor behind her.
As it was after hours only the occasional light in the main hall was on, and the security guard as she suspected was doing the rounds outside.
'Good' she thought. 'The others can deal with them.'
As she walked towards the great black door which led to the experimental cryo wing, she readied the card Miwa had prepared for her and swiped it against the door. With a ping the light flashed red to green as the great door unsealed itself with a large clunk. Stepping back inside the mist filled halls of the cryo wing, alone, caused Dana to become very dry in the mouth. It was seldom anyone was allowed back here without a partner: safety reasons they called it.
But tonight she didn't have anyone's permission but her own.
She just hoped Miwa could unlock the gate for their... help.
Stopping, as her foot stepped in a pile of gathering ice, Dana looked down and then around. Was it right, was it...
Her teeth gritted together as her mind remembered what Flint Stagg had said to them, her.
Three days Earlier
Eco-Corp Cryogenics Offices
The tall thickly built man across from Dana and Miwa statement was flat and to the point, while the two scientists stared in horror as the full weight of the man who looked like a former wrestler hit them.
The words left Miwa's lips as she seemed to be absorbed into the chair she was in, her chin quivering finding words to say. All while Dana glared daggers at their now former boss.
Flint Stagg was everything his son wasn't. Tall where his son was average height, fiery red hair where his son was dark, a wall of muscle formed from years of wrestling, where Dana knew his son was a bean poll. The man seemed to tower over the pair, his black eyes, gazing back at her like the cold of a winter night.
"You can't fire us, we have a contract." Dana plea was shot down as Flint coiled and uncoiled his fingers as he bounced a pencil along his knuckles.
"It's been revoked."
Dana felt the heat rise within her as she protested. "You can't..."
"Did I stutter." Flint's voice was every bit as gruff as he looked, as he scratched his red beard and returned the equally menacing glare that Dana was giving him.
Miwa just stammered out her question. "B-but why..."
"This company's reputation has faltered greatly because of my son's carelessness, and now I am determined to ensure it doesn't again," Mr. Stagg explained. "Bio-Tech is considering constructing a specialized prison for the type of criminals that have been coming out of the woodwork, and Eco-Corp has a contract with the local police. I intend to keep it at that with the keeping of this particular prisoner. If that gets jeopardized by a couple of delinquents like you two ladies, then the company goes down the tubes."
"Security reasons, mostly because you two have been spending an awful lot of time in there," Stagg replied. "Eco-Corp is currently in a sort of power struggle with Bio-Tech since we've had our ties cut thanks to my son. And I'm not about to make another incident involving two delinquents allowing a criminal we have on ice to get loose because they were partying instead of working."
"What do you expect us to ignore him. He is still human you -"
Mr Stagg wasn't having any of it. He rose to his impressive six foot six in height and loomed over Dana and Miwa, his sheer bulk bearing down on them like a insurmountable wall: and when he now spoke the room seemed to quake.
"That thing is just like the freaks that put us in this mess." Even as he whispered the pair of cyrogenicists both felt their bones shake from the sheer power of this mans voice, as they looked up into his shadow cast eyes. "We are not trusting that monster, and I am not compromising the good will we are earning by keeping it here!" Half way through that sentence the sinister whisper grew into a roaring pitch, Flint Stagg fingers now digging into his desk as he leaned in closer, as if his size would force Dana and Miwa back into their chairs.
It had the opposite effect.
"You can't treat Elrod that w-"
Dana was knocked to the ground as the back of Flints hand collided with the side of her face. Miwa helped her friend up as she stared up at Flint as he rubbed his wrist, scowling down on her from on high.
"Elrod Provarious is dead. You would do well to remember that girl. Now both of you. Get out of my sight."
"You... I am going to..."
Flint though did not miss a beat as his deep bellowing snort cut off the more meek, if shocked voice of Dana.
"What, sue me? Arrest me?" He now leaned over his desk and sneered. "I fired you for sympathising with a criminal, its only natural you would lie to get some money out of it."
Miwa opened her mouth to object as well, but she could see in this mans eye there was nothing she could do. If they called the police he could claim they did it to themselves. If they tried to sue Flint had the best lawyers in the business. Even if they went to Bio-corp she doubted they would help them: after all they were still covering for Harris.
Yet as she thought, a plan, a desperate half idea of plan came to her: and slowly she helped Dana to her feet.
"Come on... I have an idea."
Yet even as the pair moved to leave the office, Miwa looked back over her shoulder, to glare at Stagg.
Yet the giant of the man did not look, instead, rearranging a pencil pot which had been knocked over as he had torn into them.
The Next Day
Things went as they usually did. Even with the fired employees gone and nothing to worry about. But unfortunately, that wasn't going to last. As in the back alley, hidden in the shadows, Dana and Miwa, wearing heavy coats and caps to hide their faces, used the fire escape to get up to the building's rooftop. Once up there, the two girls made their way to a transformer box, and opened it. In it, were circuits and labels saying where each place was being powered. Dana pulled on a pair of rubber gloves, and a pair of wire cutters.
"Not important enough, eh," Dana asked, mocking the boss's words, as she found the circuit in particular, and snapped it.
in the room that Prof. Python was current detained, the power suddenly went off, as the machine shut off. Outside, the same snobbish guard that saw the girls off, and still smirking, was walking down near the area.
As the pair observed the guard Miwa looked to Dana and raised two fingers. Slowly she raised them to her eyes then gestured to Dana, then pointed at the guard, and then did a little walking motion with her fingers, before smothering them in her hands: wresting with them as she pulled roaring faces.
Dana looked at her as though she was insane, and Miwa face palmed.
"I'll sneak by get his attention. Then you knock him out." The smaller girl whispered through gritted teeth.
Dana On instinct shushed Miwa. "Shush! He may hear you."
"Miwa looked at her partner incredulously: but never got a answer as the guard looked up.
"Huh... What was that?"
Both women froze as the guard looked over the edge of his paper.
Both girls held there breath.
A split second later he looked back at his paper turning the page.
"Must have been the wind," he commented, as he sipped his tea. "Yep... definitely the wind."
But before the guard could go, and the girls could make a move, teh door to the room where Professor Python was being held in... cracked open. The guard's attention was gotten by this, as he turned to it out of curiosity and suspicion.
The girls looked at each other, as Miwa but her lip. They could seem the eternal mist from the room leak out into the hall: engulfing the leg of the guard.
Speaking of which the guard approached with his pistol drawn and with a free hand gently closed the door.
Still next thing he knew there was a bucket on his head, as Fana whacked him around the back of his head with a mop.
He spun around only to get whacked in the crotch and fell to the floor. There Dana jumped on his head and kicked him into unconscious.
The guard groaned, not knocked out, as he looked to teh two girls, "You! What are you two doing here?!" Unbeknownst to all three, a familiar green tail was slithering around teh guard's ankle.
The guard looked back to see the tail tighten its grip around his leg. He stared up at the twi women and let out tell as he the tail pulled him out of sight.
Buried in Darkness, the guard frantically looked around to see what had snagged him, pulling out his flashlight, as he tried to look around. But then something grabbed his face, as the light shined underneath it, giving it an eerie look. It was a pair of reptilian yellow eyes, as they looked at him. But not as a person. But as something... disposable.
"Apologiessssss," the owner's voice hissed. "After a while in hibernation... I'm Sssssstarving."
Outside the door Dana and Miwa heard a long drawn out scream and then silence. There was a sound like tearing and then a dull thud, and the next thing they saw was the door opening and the monstrous form of Python emerging.
"I ssssee the plan is working ppppuuuurrrrrfectly." he hissed.
Within a minute Miwa and Dana were leading Python through the facility, guiding him down the hallways and towards the front door. Miwa was a bit freaked out, but said nothing, Dana however was mothering Python who was moving sluggish and slow.
"Are you okay Elrod," she asked as the Lizard man used a nearby wall to steady himself.
"That freezer... leftssssss me weak..." he growled through a hiss, the blood in his veins not quite back to its old self.
Dana stopped to try and lift the huge mutant, while Miwa checked the room beyond. The locked door stood a short while away across a open room. She looked back and waved them on. "Hurry up, help will be here soon."
"Help... I neeeeed no helpsssss."
"Yes but you need a escape route, and Miwa has called some help to make us one." Dana explained as she pulled Pythons arm around her neck and helped him into the room
"And where is this escape route."
As if on que the noise of a engine grew louder and louder, as a light beyond the window got closer. The door blew inwards as a van slammed through the wall, its back end crashing through and sending brick everywhere. The back doors then flew open and a large man in a balaclava jumped out.
He looked up at the giant that was Python and whistled.
His answer was met by angry glares as Miwa helped Dana pull Python into the back of the van.
"No its the other giant lizard man we know," Miwa dryly retorted. "Just shut up and drive Castle."
"Yeah yeah," the brute of a man stated as he ran to the passengers seat. "I'll let Rolland know the mission was a success."
"Roland Zelenski. Your brother is Roland Zelenski."
Peter could not believe what he was hearing. The rando boy he had let stay with them the night, a stranger he had offered to help, was now telling him he needed to find the one guy who he hated most. His bully Roland Zelenski: and apparently Charles brother.
Charles nodded, acting like he was fazed at their reaction, "Well, he's my step brother. I'm adopted into his family when I was a boy." He then arched an eyebrow looking at the shocked expression of Peter's face, "Why? You know him?"
Peter felt a wave of emotion rise within him, his hands began to shake. He could taste the familiar copper of blood as the change began to set in as he balled his hands into fists.
'No not now, he cried as he began to crush down the desire to change, and howl out in rage.
"Y-Yeah... I know him. He g... went to my school."
Charles blinked, "Went? As in past tense? He should still have one more year left before graduation. Did he drop out?"
At that Peter looked down at the poor boy who had come up to his house, hungry, alone, if not a bit scared. He thought about telling him about Rolland, how much of a bully he was, how much he had ruined his life.
But no he couldn't do that... this boy was too... he just could not.
"He dropped out. "Peter finally said without much fanfare. "Not for him."
"Yeah," Charles said nodding sadly. "Sounds like him."
At that moment, the girls, who had just gotten dressed after a shower, were coming down the stairs, but stopped to seeing the two boys conversing.
Maria, Sarah and Ashley were all heading to the exit chatting quite happily, Sarah steering Jean and Vivian under each arm as they walked. Rachel lagged behind somewhat in her own thoughts but soon saw Charles and Peter standing in the living room and stopped. She let the girls walk ahead, Sarah and Ashley get some distance between her and their talk of fashion, when she noticed Peter was alone as he was going to get and waited for the two to finnish speaking.
"Well... I can take you I guess." Peter's words did not really sound all that into it, as he hoped Charles would reconsider as his mind raced on how to explain to the boy about just who his brother was.
However Charles reaction only caused the pit to fall out of his stomach.
"You mean it?" With his hands placed together, his eyes big and blue Peter could not help he looked so happy to have direction: any direction from the look of it. "I'll go get my things."
Although he considered grabbing Charles to warm him about how he should reconsider, Peter hand fell away as he watched the boy rush out and back up the stairs to the room he had provided him. The black haired teen sighed as he watched the final tint of the boys orange top disappear and Peter let his posture droop.
The elongated word summed up his expression all to well.
Yet the laughter from around the corner caught him off guard. Rachel Darke stepped out with her arms crossed and blocked the door way.
"You okay 'Alpha?'"
Turning he saw Rachel. they hadn't known each other for long, but Peter felt he could at least talk to her about this kind of stuff, "No. I'm so far from alright it's not even funny. I'm sending the sweetest guy his age to the most slimiest and violent punk who ever got expelled from Shepard High in existence. he could give lessons to Hannibal, Coligula, and Hitler, as that's how bad he is."
"Wow? 3 whole seconds."
"Oh just something about everything going back to the Nazis." Rachel jested, as she cocked an eyebrow at the now worried teen before her. "But your a werewolf what do you got to worry about?"
Peter managed a groan as he pointed up the stairs. "Yeah but he isn't and Roland... he is bad... bad blood, bad everything." He pulled back his neck and pointed: there was nothing there but he spoke with the fear he had felt those months back. "He cut me here just for looking at Ashley, he was dating her at the time and he almost ripped by throat out."
Rachel eyebrow grew higher on her forehead as her disbelief spared further across her face.
"And he did all this in school?"
"He got expelled for a reason, Rachel, I am not lying about that."
Peter lips pursed as he finished talking, the pair holding each other in a silent stare, as Rachel was feeling out his emotions while Peter remained steely in his.
"So what's so hard about telling him. What are you going to-"
Rachel's question was cut off by the pattering of feet on the polished vinewood stairs, as Charles bounded down it. He had his rucksack back on and was smiling ear to ear.
"So we going to take a bus or is it within walking distance."
He looked up at them smiling, a palpable enthusiasm infecting the very air around them. His eyes resting on the nearby door.
"Ah," Rachel said.
'Yeah' Peter grumbled in response. 'ah.'
Roland Zelenski took another large bite out of the burger he had one of his goons buy later that way. He smacked his chops, chewing the meat but not really tasting it as he stared down the seven... eight feet, he did not really care: as he stared down the giant lizard man and the two girls who were nervously standing behind him.
"So you can do it then?"
"Yesssssss." Python hissed as he sat across from Roland, as he patted his claws against one another in a thoughtful pose. "Weeeeeee can recreate the enzzzyyyymmmmmeeeee with my blood and engineer and new strain of superior life formssssss."
Roland did not flinch as he threw the burger back into the paper wrapping he had for it as he pulled the coke to his lips and let off a loud slurp. If anything he was doing it to annoy the lizard creature, as it eyes him up like a predatory meal. "That's if you can do it." If the beast was going to look at him like a piece of meat he was going to treat him like a piece of crap. "I mean Castle's girl says she has got her own program lined up?"
"You didn't sound so confident in them earlier," one of the girls said, Roland forgot there names already.
"Oh that's just me playing boss," Roland stated with a smirk, "Gus is too smart for his own good, ot to keep ego in check." he let out a hearty laugh before dropping the coke and snapping fingers, pointing at Python with a glower.
"Listen here scales, you better not be shitting me when you say my boys will be stronger then that piece of shit, Alpha. Got me?"
"You and I have more in common, sssso I doubt there'ssss much in double crossssing one another," Python rpelied. "I can ssssupply resultssss, but I need necesssssary materialsss. Namely DNA and sssuch."
Roland raised a hand and snapped his fingers.
A goon at the door came in, there was a uzi sub machine gun under his arm and looked inside as if it was a small mouse caught in a trap.
"Steph," Roland barked angrily. "use your phone to make notes, because I ain't writing this shit down."
The nervous goon nodded and walked in, his baggy trousers causing him to walk with a odd gait as they hung almost around the slack jawed kids face. He pulled out his phone and looked up at Python with a mix of awe and terror.
"Relax, boy. I'm not going to eat you," Python replied. And then smirked showing his teeth, "I already had a bite."
The boy whimpered a bit at that, but now had his phone out and Python smile grew wider.
"Let usssss begin..."
The door flew open and the same muscular dark skin teen who had been in the truck to save Python burst in. "Hey Roland! You got to see this!"
In a instant, Roland went from 20 to 100, as he leapt to his feet drew a gun and leveled it at the mans head.
"Dam it Castle I am talking super powers here, you better have a good reason, or so help non-existent god I am gonna rip your-"
"Yeah but Elaine got her formula working Roland."
Not caring about it, waved hsi hand to shoo Castle out of there, "Fine, fine, fine, go and tell her to go experimenting for all I care."
But she did give us the money for the."
"Don't care," growled Roland as he slammed the door. "Now snake man, what did ya need? And ya wouldn't happen to have any plans for wolves?"
Python clicked his claws together, as he replied, "There are more deadlier predators than mammals, my good sir."
Other Side of the Warehouse
Gus 'Castle' stormed through to his 'office' which at the moment consisted of a table a revolving chair and the deed for the legally bought old factory/Warehouse. Nevermind their money had been illicitly gained.
"Let me guess, he is interested in his new toy?" a slim girl with a pink top, light brown hair and horn rimmed glasses asked as she sat on his desk.
"Yep," told him you had a batch done but he was in the middles with talking 'shop' with Steven Spielberg's motion capture artist."
She was a young sixteen-year-old Caucasian female of slender build, slightly althetic with clear skin. She had light brown hair that reached her upper back with three shaggy spikey bangs framing her face and covering her forehead with glasses that barely covered her brown eyes. She was wearing a white t-shirt that was buttoned up with a brown sweater vest, and a bruise red skirt that went to her knees, with knee high white socks and brown shoes. This was Elaine Melbourne: a sophomore from Shepard High who didn't care about Roland's crime, but accepted in helping develop awesome science to surpass the now known Lycans.
"I'll never understand why most males find dinosaurs so fascinating," Elaine sighed. "Once Steven Spieldberg made Jurassic Park, the world was in a frenzy for a franchise."
Gus just grunted as he sat down behind his chair, and held out his hand. "Anyway, your report?"
Elaine looked at him as if he was being funny? "You were actually serious about that?"
The dark eyed man looked at Elaine with a dead stare his hand not lowering. "If we are going to market the formula you say you can make, then we have to start treating this like a business. Anyway where is the prototype?"
"In the fridge in my lab, although I used up all those hairs you had from your last tangle with the wolves."
Gus snorted. "Knew saving them would have its perks, but are you sure werewolf hair is what you need. I ca just rob the zoo for wolf hair?"
"It's not an ordinary wolf, Gus," Elaine explained. "Lycanthropes are a hybrid of wolf and man. How this originated, i had a theory once I found this out. What if the curse that everyone has feared or been ignorant of for so long, was in fact a virus? A virus that survives by bonding human DNA with the DNA of a secondary species. And in the rpocess unlocks what I believe to be the 24th Chromosome."
"Okay so you need special wolf DNA, or this extra Chromosome or whatever." Gus nodded. "Just tell me what you need and I'll get it for you."
"Are aren't you so considerate."
"yeah well I cannot say no to a pretty face," Gus Sarcastically said.
Elaine thought about it, and replied, "Well, if we need more Lycanthrope hairs... then we need a source."
"So in other words we go hunting," Gus growled. "Well we are going to need a very big piece of bait."
"Oh, I think I have an idea for that," Jaqueline said as she looked down at a news article on her phone. "A very big idea."
The title read: 'Jackie Hyde' who is she?
Meanwhile at Shepard High
Mikey's fingers flew over the keyboard, the sound of keys angrily click, click, clicking away as he looked through the information that Ashley had forwarded him. He had gone through several journals, reports and even used his uncles access codes to get onto a secure police network to look into this 'Jackie Hyde.' And he had to say -
"Dam she looks good."
"Eyes above the neck Corvus."
Derek was sitting on a nearby windowsill for the schools computer room, his eyes turned towards the green front lawn of the old school, as he watched the sun begin to set behind the city skyline. He had that stern expression he always wore, but today of all days Mikey felt it was extra stern.
"Whats eating you, ya grouch?"
Derek reply started with his usual grunt, although he tuned to Mikey this time with his even handed glare.
"The fact I have to work with you."
The words cut at Mikey, but he did not show it. It helped his hair covered his eyes, concealing his hurt expression: although he flashed a smile hoping it would alleviate the conversation. When Derek's expression did not alter so much as an inch Mikey relented and turned back to his computer muttering, "tough crowd," as he reloaded the browser to see if there had been any updates.
Derek did not bite as Mikey began to scroll through a story which had been posted seven seconds ago, as he managed to speed read through the information in a couple of seconds. He didn't even try to get Derek's permission as he summarized what he saw.
"Seems like there has been a recent break in at a factory in the old industrial district..." Mikey began as he reread the article once more to confirm. "Witness reports say it was Jackie Hyde?"
Instantly Derek was on his feet and gabbing his and Mikey's rucksack, with their pack uniforms in. "Here suit up," the agitated werewolf said tossing Mikey his bag as he headed for the door.
Mikey opened his mouth to state something didn't seem right, yet the bag hit him before he could talk and Derek was already out of the door before he could speak again.
Mikey sighed, "I have a feeling working with him is going to be quite the working experience."
1 Hour Later
An hour later the pair were leaping over the city streets, jumping from one 1930's house to the other. The wide streets made a few of the leaps difficult but the plentiful series of trees made traversing the Everett night a non-issue. Mikey, or rather Scope, was part way crossing between a lamppost and a tree, having swung from the overhang of the metal to the branch: which buckled under his weight, as he noticed Scar was now further ahead.
Scar/Derek had taken the most direct route he could which often involved sprinting over people's rooves and kicking up some of the roof tiles in the process. Still he could make the street wide jumps necessary to get ahead of Scope.
"You wanna slow up?" He said in a average way, knowing their enhanced hearing meant he didn't need to shout.
Scar by now had managed to reach a section of waste ground, and was sprinting at full speed across it. Scope land ew seconds later and saw that he was already half way across it. The brown werewolf let out a sigh, scratching a creamier part of his fur.
Scope stopped, as he grumbled, "So what the heck are we gonna do? I mean, don't forget what happened when we ran into that crazy Snake Man. Maybe we should have waited for at least Queen to show up."
However Scar was now over the wall at the far end of the open ground, as the last word left scope's snout. Letting his shoulders collapse he sighed, his body falling into a slump. Still the momentary melancholy soon left him as he perked back up and began to jog on the spot.
"Well if Scar thinks I am of no use, I will just have to show him how I can be of use." With his wolf like speed he crossed the open ground and jumped over the low hanging wall, yelling.
"Hey wait up!"
20 Minutes Later…
By now Scope and Scar had managed to reach the industrial district. The waste ground were replaced by large old brick buildings of the 1940's and 60's, back during the boom times following the second word war. Still the distance between the factories meant they had to forgo the rooftops and instead prowl the lower areas, moving from shadow to shadow.
Scope took the lead running up against a wall and peering round the corner to check it was clear. As soon as Scar reached him he waved his hand to tell him to move up.
Scar just snorted in response and moved Scope to allow him to look.
"I told you that."
Scar turned to face him, his large burn mark on his far leaning into the smaller wolf, as he stated.
"And you know how to be stealthy?"
Scar then moved on, leaving Mikey feeling thoroughly wretched in his gut.
Scope grumbled at his packmen's criticism of his stealth, "'course i know how to be stealthy. How else can I get those girl pics?"
"I mean actual stealth," Scar began as he rounded the corner and began to look about.
"That is actual stealth, you heartless virgin jerk."
Suddenly bright lights flooded their vision, as a series of derelict cars powered up theirs headlights to full beam. Scope could hear the sound of metal on concrete followed by the miss of gas. As soon as the spots and temporary blindness faded he saw the smoke and began to cough. A sensation which was quickly followed again by another sound of metal on concrete.
Both Scope and Scar in all this confusion caught the brunt of the flash and the bang. Their super enhanced senses overloaded as they fell to the floor howling.
Scope could make out the shapes of people. People running at him with chains. But he could now only half hear and see as he writhed in the ground, his nose clogged with smoke, his glowing eyes watering and his ears ringing.
He could not hear, he could not see; he could not even feel when the thugs dog piled him and pulled the chains around his wrists and throat.
But Scope did manage to shout out, "HEY! What's going on here?! What the heck is with the football dogpile?!"
"Can it wolf," he managed to hear someone cry as he felt three people tackle his gut setting the werewolf off balance and sending him crashing to the ground.
Scope shook his head and as he did he tried to move his arm and found it bound by a large industrial chain. He then saw three men over him holding out what appeared to be a plastic gun... but he then recognised it as a taser.
His words were cut off as ten thousand volts shocked through his nervous system, causing him to writhe in pain. Still as he pulled his now chained a he felt some tug but then he felt something pull back. He managed t see the twelve people on each arm trying to hold him down before the attackers shocked him with another wave of electricity.
When Scope was fully down, twitching from the shocks, one of the thugs smirked, "Heh, they ain't so tough."
However, he would soon regret that... as Scope managed to stay conscious... and kick the thug right in the groin.
Scope then felt more tasers strike him and he screamed.
He could now only make out the barest images, cries of anger and some of pain. He thought he could hear someone yell, "Oh god he bit them," and then blacked out as a man in a balaclava just came into view.
Gus looked down at the two werewolves, his hand on his chin, and another gripping his oversized desert eagle. Still he dared not get too close, standing just at the edge of circle of light which now illuminated the twitching and partially unconscious wolves. He nodded registering them and moving his hand from his chin he waved for the gang to move them into the trucks.
The thugs pulled the two limp supernatural creatures into the back of the van, one with a specially electrified floor just for them. He smirked under the balaclava at how easy it had been to lure them here: he would have to thank Elaine for the idea. Yet there was still one issue to deal with.
He now turned to a few of his men, two in particular, one was a shaggy looking girl with a gothic like dress, gripping her arm where blood was no leaking from it like a river. The other was a boy with a overcast look, his expression numb as a deep bite to the neck was clear to see.
Everyone was standing a bit back from the pair, unsure of what to do or say, as everyone had seen how they had rushed the black werewolf as it had bitten them in a frenzy.
One thug asked. "Mr Castle... sir. Umm what do we do with Trash and Suicide?"
"Pack'em in with the others. A few spare never hurt anyone."
Trash, an average sixteen-year-old Caucasian girl with punk rock look and pigtails made a lunge for Gus, while her wound stained her top red.
"Hey, what's the big idea! We get one little scratch and what we're suddenly werewolves?!"
Gus managed to gab the tiny girls fist, she only came up half way up his chest, and with a flick of his wrist sent her flying back into Suicide who had just begun to charge.
"That's how it works." Castle grumbled as the two hit each other and Suicide threw Trash off and continued to charge. Almost Lazily he pulled his right shoulder back to put it out of the punch the lanky emo kid had before bringing up his left leg and booting him back into Trash, as she pulled herself off the floor. "You two were help. But I don't want Roland getting ideas so he can just get bit and get superpowers... so-" he turned to the remaining men and jabbed his finger at the piled up pair. "Stun em and cuff em." He growled.
And the gang of taser armed thugs descended on their former comrades without a second thought.
From atop his perch the great black wolf stared down at the scene that unfolded before him. He was half a mile away, had two buildings and a busy street between him and the event, but he had to say that the attack by the humans had been a novel one.
His red glowing eyes tracked every one of the would be hunters as they loaded up the brown and black werewolf into the back of the van. And then dragged the two humans into the back of the van. He could pick out there screams, their roars of anger, and cries against the injustice done to them. He had to say he found the young girls choice of words colourful and entertaining: as was her descriptions of what she would do to her allies turned captives.
Still it would seem a new group of hunters had entered the fray. A new chess piece in this game of predator and prey. It was strange they would take the wolves alive. Maybe they were going to torture the young wolves for information... maybe...
Lucien let the ideas run through his head, and slowly uncured himself from his kneeling position to his full height.
His eyes remained locked on the back of the vans as they pulled away and traveled into the blackness of the night.
He had some prey to hunt, and who knows it may lure out the other young bloods.
"It seems the world is taking a new turn in all this," the wolf looked back one more time, until he turned back in front, and smirked, "I think it's best to keep an eye on these new hunters. See what their intentions will be later on. They might help me later on if they're less noble than the Argents."
Back at the Warehouse
Roland stared out across his 'kingdom.'
Bellow him dozens of thugs were running to and throw. Some were suing up the old chemical tanks which had dominated the old factory. Others were driving vans in from the recent jobs on nearby companies to secure tech.
It was a crime wave in the making, and would be all across the news in a few hours. But between now and then he had time.
Time to build an army.
His eyes darted to one of his men, a scrawny man, probably fourteen. He knew he hadn't bought him into the gang. Hell he would never have accepted some kid who right now was wearing jeans down to his forelegs and, pointing a gun at a 'gangster' angle. He had the posture all wrong anyway. Still the main thing was the kid was a punk, a lame good for nothing, who oly signed on with gangs to brag and would run when things looked tough.
But what if he didn't.
In the last few months so many things had changed. First a werewolf beats him up, steals his girl and gets him kicked out of school. Then news of a old blockbuster being raided by a monstrous wolf. Then a giant blue man raids the nearest hospital and that was nothing compared to that fancy shin dig being crashed by that ice guy.
Still where everyone wrote this off as isolated cases of science gone wrong Roland knew better. He knew power when he saw it. If you had a gun you used it. If a guy was gonna beat you, you got a bigger stick and beat him back and kept beating till he was dead.
And now; now he had that stick.
He watched as the giant snake man crossed the floor towards a van coming in. Out of the back hopped two ladies with a few of his men: a large computer thing in the back.
Yeah he knew power, and dam was he going to use it!
"Do you have the materialsssss and the um... willing Guinea pigs I assssked for," Python smirked.
Miwa nodded. "The Materials. The guinea pigs... ehhh"
The thugs that had helped them trailed away just as her own voice trailed off at the announcement of the need for 'test subjects.' Roland's gang had not been the most enthusiastic bunch to subject themselves to Pythons testing: and while Rolland backed him no one had stepped forward to help.
Dana snorted. "Castle sent all the test subjects down to the girl in the basement. Saying her work is further along." She wheeled out what seemed to be a large tank.
"Still he did find us this in a Stag research facility." Miwa said, her tone bouncing with as much excitement as she was. "Its a genetic recombiner they were making to try and help that ice cube guy who made the place where you were held..."
"Yeah I think that was his name."
Python dived at what seemed to be a large oversized beaker, with a circular computer attached to the bottom, and inspected it with his long claws.
"Yessss… this will be a good sssstart."
But then Miwa had to ask, "So who's this Frozo guy?"
Python easily lifted the beeaker, as he replied, "I believe his real name was Sub-Zero. formerly Dr. Victor Petrikov."
"Oh you knew him?"
"Not really, no," Python answered. "But I did hear he was a brilliant cryo-scientist... before his sister became fatally ill."
"Yeah I heard her sister was named Elsa. Can you believe that." Dana smirked.
Miwa sighed and just shook her head. "Still we're going to need test subjects for this thing before we make this work."
"Unlessssss Mr. Zolinsssski actually getssss going with that requessst," Python groaned as he fumed, "Inssssstead of following the whimssss of that Melbourne woman."
"Well if no one else will... I'll do it." Miwa said defiantly.
Dana nodded. "yeah but we sort of need you to monitor the stable genetic recombination."
"Not if I pre-program we won't."
"You know that's incredibly dangerous right!"
As Python set up his new toy, he merely exclaimed, "Science never progressed without taking risssksssss ladiesssss."
So this is it."
A shabby dilapidated 1950's single story home stood before them. Once a model of post war America boom time, now a shabby retch of a home, left to seed in a bad nebiouhood. The faded white of a 40 year old paint job gave the house a almost archaic look, as the wooden panels seemed to come away in places, and the brown lawn looked ready to become a desert.
Still this was the place on Charles note.
It was also a place Peter had wished to never visit.
All those times in school, all those beatings; every time Roland had treated him like a punching bag for his sick amusement. The image as he had almost cut his neck open with his fake diamond ring flashed in his mind.
Yet as he now stood here, after everything that had happened in the last few months, he had to say he didn't feel scared. If anything he more felt afraid for Charles: it was like walking a lamb into a slaughter house.
Charles asked, "This is where he lives?"
Peter nodded, "Yeah, though everyone just tries to avoid it."
"Because it's haunted, Charles asked.
Peter shook his head, "Nope. Mostly because who's in there."
"Does Roland live with someone bad?"
Peter winced at the purity of that question. He thought about talking Charles of it, but the young blonde Polish boy just excitedly walked down the path and almost ran into the door he was excited.
Peter followed him on instinct to stop him... but a part of him just couldn't. Could he?
Charles's knuckles rapped against the wood and Peter sighed.
It was too late.
"What the hell you two nice boys doin' in the pits of hell?"
The two boys jumped as they saw an elderly African American man, dressed middle class but looked like he ran the joint.
Peter managed to regain his bearings and asked, "Are you the super-intendent of this place?"
"Yeah, I run this joint," the man replied. "It's not much to look at , but the rent's been frozen since the 1930s. It's not much, but at least it's got warmth and cable. No wifi, but our luxury's only go so far. I take it you're looking for someone? If you want, I might be able to help."
Charles was quick to walk up to the man and smiled. "Hello. I'm looking for my big brother. Roland... Roland Zelenski?"
He said this with a sweetness and charm that just melted Peter's heart. Even more so knowing how it was soon to be crushed... yet if stopped him...
The man backed off a little, as he suddenly produced a shotgun, "I warned all you sons of bitches to get off my property! I don't care if you've got guns, I ain't puttin' up with all yer gangsta crap!"
"Woah, woah!" Peter's reflexes kicked in and he slid between Charles and the landlord in a second and grabbed the barrel of the shotgun and turned it sky high. Before the man had time to struggle Peter's eyes flashed yellow and the large man froze. His face paling as Peter snarled.
"We are not with tha… Roland. This is just his little brother got it. No need to go threatening a fourteen year old." He then pushed off with one arm, trying to make the man stand back, but instead knocked him to the ground.
The landlord sighed, feeling a bit relaxed, "I see. Sorry about that. But the company that Zollinski keeps around just causes nothin' but trouble around here. How you think this place got so messed up? And there are even fourteen-year-olds that are way worse than what you think."
Charles just stammered. "Wha… wha…"
Peter just waved him off. "Just tell me where Roland is."
"He hasn't been here in a while," The landlord explained. "Ever since he got arrested for the assault, the warehouse breakin', and got expelled, he hasn't shown up at all."
"That was over two months ago," Peter saying. Hoping that would be enough to make Charles at the least think twice.
Charles however just shook his head. "Look... umm Sir. Do you know anywhere I can find him then?"
The large man stroked his stubble and looked down at Charles, with an expression that matched Peter's. A sigh like a wounded animal soon emerged, as he and Peter knew the kid was not going to give up.
"look here kid. let me give you some advice. You're brother ain't a good man. Maybe you should -"
"You're wrong." Charles said rather hotly. "I know him. He looked out for me before our parents died and..." Charles seemed to go limp as the larger man leaned in as if to dare the kid to speak back to him again. Charles seemed to admit defeat though as his shoulders slumped and turned back to Peter. "Peter, you knew him. Do you know anywhere we could find him..."
And again Peter felt the bottom drop out his stomach.
"Honestly... " Peter sighed, as he knew he had to confess the truth. He looked to Charles, as he replied, "Charles. I know him because... he's been my tormentor since I was a Freshman." It didnt seem that Charles got the picture, as Peter confessed, "He's a bully, Charles. He's abusive to everyone he comes into contact or to those he thinks that look at him funny."
For a minute Charles seemed to stop. Struck dumb by the words, the explanation, the hate that leaked into the corners of the caring plead from Peter's statement. His mouth hung slightly open, his eyes open like he was a deer caught in the headlights of a car.
This person who had helped him, sheltered him, played with him. The only person in this country that had offered him kindness now just told him what amounted to his entire trip being a waste.
What was a fourteen year old to do.
It was a short phrase, a simple one and it seemed to hurt Peter as much pain as Charles was feeling himself. In response Peter reached out a hand, only for Charles to step back. Not quite recoil, but enough for him to walk into the larger land owner who placed his own hand on his orange shirt.
"Listen to him kid. That brother of yours is a bad egg."
Charles slapped the arm away and spun around to face the man, shaking his head.
"Nie… Nie…" he began to say in polish "To nie może być… That can't be ri…"
Peter now reached out to him again, yet he felt a vibration from his phone, as the sound of his mobile ringtone broke the silence, shattering the tension in one blow. Peter lowered his arm, and went to his phone. It was Ashley, and on there emergency number too. He glanced up at Charles who even now was just staring at the ground, his whole body shaking.
The landlord looked back at Peter, and shrugged, offering no words.
I mean what could they say?
"Look... take a minute Charles." His thumb clicked the answer on the green answer button as he turned away. "Just..." He sighed and raised the phone to his ear, and walked away.
"Hey Ashley. Can I call you back I am-"
"Peter. Derek's missing."
Even with three words Peter could tell she was serious. The frantic tone, the hurried speech, that borderline crack everyone has when they are distress. He felt his hand grip the phone tighter and glanced back at Charles. Why now of all times?
"Okay give me the details." He whispered. Hushing his tone.
"He and Mikey went out on patrol last night and-"
"Is Mikey all right?"
There was a pause. Peter felt the bottom drop out of his stomach and took a few steps away.
"He is missing too."
It was like lightning had struck him in several places at once. A sensation of dread came over him, his mind cast adrift as it went back to that night at the blockbuster store: Mikey's bleeding body lying there on the ground. He felt his grip on the phone loosen as his hand began to shake.
"I'll be right over. Get Maria, Kylie... anyone you can."
"I already have. We are meeting at your place... sorry I am just..."
Peter could still he that slight warble in her voice. It made the knot now in his stomach tighten even more. But he knew what was scaring him now wasn't just his best friend and pack mate being in potential danger, it was that he had never heard Ashley this scared before. For her to crack...
"Ashley I'll head right back. You just stay safe."
Peter heard the click and drone of the, and ended the call. He let out a sigh and turned to face Charles with a forced smile.
"Look Charles. Maybe we should..."
But Charles was gone, and the landlord was walking away.
He dived for the landlord and pulled him around with more force then he should have. The man looked terrified as he stared back at the boy, now seizing him by his shoulders.
"Where is Charles?"
"The kid? He said something about going for a walk and I assumed when you wanted to give him a minute..."
Peter let go and looked left and right. His fear from his friends being at potential risk spiralling into terror. His first thoughts were whether Charles would come back: so he waited.
And when it was clear he wasn't he looked.
But no luck.
He then searched, even using his skills to climb onto a roof to get a better look of the area.
Yet Charles was just gone.
And all at once Peter felt his fear overwhelm him, and his body begin to break... Literally as his wolf began to overtake him.
He needed to get back. Back to the pack.
Charles had been running down the stairs to get as far as he could. The look of panic on his face was clearly evident of the news that he took. Roland, his big stepbrother, a bully and now a thug. It wasn't hidden from the fact that Roland had been unnaturally violent; he grew up next to him and seen what he did to other kids before getting sent to America to hopefully clear his head. But now…
He suddenly crashed into someone as he fell flat on the floor on his butt, groaning, as he sighed, "S-Sorry about that.. I.."
"Well, well, well…"
That voice sounded familiar, as he slowly looked up. In front of him towering over him, with two goons next to him, was Roland, as he viciously smirked at the young man, "How I love family reunions with my favorite little brother."
Next Chapter: Underside of the Paw; Wolf Fanatic Fans
(BTW: this arc will be completed in my side story: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Miss Hyde.)
Also apologies for the late update. This story has a huge branch system of alternate AUs and I have been focusing to build up on them more.