Nothing like waking up with the thrum of engines and a bad headache. I groaned and opened my eyes to a cell, and realize I was upright. Moving my arms didn't work, and they were sore, yet in looking up I found that a large pair of cuffs wrapped around my forearms and was sealed to the wall. I tug a few times, just to see if I could pull it off, sadly it wasn't that easy.
“Fuck.” It hit me then, I was a captive of the government again. A short string of curses later I calm down and try and make heads or tails of the situation. The cell was a dark gray, the black steel had been painted over for some reason, it wasn't big either, maybe ten by ten feet if my mind had been anywhere near collected. The only piece of furniture was a table, dead in the center, same color as the walls and the ceiling... and I saw the bolts on it's edges, keeping it pinned to the floor.
All of my clothes had been stripped, and aurora was gone too. I felt despair start to creep up, and thoughts like -What is going to happen to me?- and more, and it seemed like all I could think about while I was stuck there, down on my knees like a slave.
I sit there and brood for what seemed like an hour or so before my tormentors arrived. The door was reinforced with an extra few inches of steel. The door drew upwards, it taking a lot longer than it was supposed to be, meaning it was to keep anything from pulling it up. Two T-SAF soldiers step in, rifles aimed at my head and heart... they weren't taking any chances with me. Then in walks the last person I saw before getting punched in the face... me. His outfit was similar to the T-SAF soldiers, but will several loose joints on the arms, and the hint of scars were visible between those joints. He looks at me like a robot, no emotion, not even a hint of it in those eyes... but there was sentience, much of it.
Then comes the first surprise of the day, another me walks in, same outfit, but only the bottom half of the armor, greaves, boots, and thigh plates. His top half was just a sleeveless white shirt with a pair of dog tags in view. His expression was different, showing a little bit of twisted amusement, like he enjoyed my discomfort. The twins were unarmed, but from what happened at the airport, I was a dead dragon for sure now.
So Twin two get's this smirk on his face, that made me just want to gnaw his arm off. He steps up, crouches down, and gives this stare into my eyes.
“You know, you are one lucky son of a bitch.” He draws this knife out from behind him, which he slowly waves in front of me so I could get a good look, and look I did, there was flecks of blood on it, most of it red, yet there was a bit of black on it, all of which looked remarkably fresh... he used it recently.
“I hope it hurts.” He taunts slowly, waving the knife ever closer to my muzzle. I do the only thing I could think of... snap forward in a biting motion. I'll admit, it was a stupid idea, but the attempted bite got the desired effect, causing him to pull the knife back. He let's off this million dollar grin of razor sharp teeth.
“So feisty...” He snaps forward, his head turning fully draconic before I could even blink, his teeth snap millimeters from my muzzle, I could see saliva dripping from the teeth. The growl he let out got my heart to start beating twice as fast as it was before. He drew back, allowing me to get a view of him... he had different dragon DNA in him, as the scales where cherry red, and his eyes burned a shocking black. He drew the knife upwards to slice at me...
“T2, Enough!” Comes a voice from the doorway, and his head goes back to normal as he turned away, but I could see the look in his eyes when that voice sounded off... it was a look of fear. 'T2' Gets out of my line of sight, and I get a look at the first person who seemed to be in command. He had a white lab coat on, and the other articles of clothing that screamed evil scientist. His hair was black yet flecked with gray, showing he was a bit older than he looked, which was in his early thirties. The scientist plats a metal briefcase on the table, making an echoing clang. 'T2' returns to his side, placing the knife back in it's sheath and keeping his gaze more on the scientist than me. The scientist gave me this smirk while he popped open the briefcase.
“Don't start without me Marlin.” A voice called out from the hallway, one that I recognized. The infamous Reaper made his appearance then, stepping around the doorway with a white mug of steaming coffee in hand. His outfit was hardly militaristic, an EVO T-SAF brand armor vest over a set of blue jeans and steel toed boots. Age showed it's mark on the man, gray hair in a buzz-cut fashion, with a couple age lines on his face, mainly the forehead. The rest of him seemed well balanced, from the frame to the muscle build, he might have been attractive to somebody if not for that sour look on his face.
After he takes a long drink of the coffee, he fixes a dark gaze on me with his red-colored eyes and says with a calm tone “Welcome to your new home.” I had this cold ball in the pit of my stomach form when he said that. A random thought said it would be a very bad idea to spark a conversation with him, so as a precaution I stay silent.
Reaper gave me an annoyed look, then sat his coffee down on the table. “Okay, i can understand why you won't speak, but really, you are making this much harder than it needs to be. First off, Since you probably think this is going to end with torture or you're death at the hands of experimentation... you are actually right, mostly at any rate.
“What does that mean?” I blurt out the question before I could stop myself, and feel that I immediately made a mistake.
He pinched the bridge of his nose, I see a small smile come onto his face, yet it held no warmth. “So you have a voicebox after all. Listen, I'll tell you this, you can come out of this with some rather good benefits.” I was confused now, first torture and horrible experimentation, now he's talking about me getting out of this with benefits?
“Benefits? How in the hell am I going to get benefits out of this? I'm locked up, prisoner to a totalitarian government, that has repeatedly tried to kill me, in fact I'm surprised I'm not dead yet.”
He looked down, with a slight thinking expression. The only sound during that time was our breathing and the dull clink of whatever was in the scientist's briefcase as he arranged something in there. A small laugh burst from Reaper, making me jump. He steps around the table and gets within a foot of me before he stopped and said “You want to know why?” He suddenly took on a weary expression, which made him seem much older than he looked. He jerked his thumb towards the clones of me while saying “It's because of them that you are still alive.” I opened my mouth to say something when he suddenly shoves my lower jaw shut with one hand, causing my horns to bang painfully into the wall behind me. “Don't say a fucking word.” He ordered as his entire demeanor changed into sudden hostility.
He moved his hand away from my jaw and spoke again, back in the calm tone of before. “Let me put it all out in bold lines for you. My job is back-breaking and tiresome. I always have problems to deal with, most without any form of help from the higher-ups. I saw your performances on several occasions, so when I had your unconscious body dragged before me, I got a rather interesting idea. Why kill him like the stuck-up scientists want when I can have an at least somewhat competent asset to help with the growing list of problems I have?” On 'competent' Both clones of me gave him a glare, which was surprising considering the stoic clone hadn't made a facial expression until now.
Reapers words however got me nervous “So you are going to turn me into an expendable asset. And what about doctor evil over there and why keep me in these cuffs?”
“Hoping you would bring that up.” He said whilst walking back toward the table, where he continued “You see, you've had help from several groups and/or persons, some we would very much like to know about.” That was the point I realized there was going to be imminent torture... but my mind sparked a few synapses and I get an odd thought... they didn't even need torture.
“You're going to torture me? Couldn't you just use Mem planter and get the info anyway?”
Reaper looks to his scientist buddy “Told you, much smarter than either of these two idiots. We could just use that and suck up all your memories. But where would the fun be in that? Many soldiers want to have retribution since you kicked their ass over Dallas.”
“So you are going to torture me even if I did tell you?” Adrenaline had begun it's course through my system, knowing I was about to feel a lot of pain.
Reaper nodded his head “Little bit, then we're just going to put a lovely little chip inside your vertebrae so you can't run away or anything similar.” The scientist pulled out a metal scalpel and a tiny rubber-stopped vial to accompany what he said.
“Now, I have a-” He is interrupted by the intercom, which a young-sounding soldier speaks through. “General, we have a situation of the flight deck.” Flight deck? So we're on an aircraft carrier... interesting. I think this while Reaper mutters a curse “Someone didn't blow themselves up again did they?” He asked rather bitterly.
“No sir, an unauthorized EVO has made it on board.”
“What! Explain now!”
“One of the soldiers reported a... i'm quoting him now “a tear in the sky.” and a EVO fell through. The soldier says it's a dragon EVO sir, but none like he has seen.”
“My day just got complicated. Set all guards on alert, I want this EVO found and brought to me ALIVE, is that understood?”
“Aye aye sir!”
He then turned to the clones of me “Find it.” The clones then ran outside and split, heading opposite directions.
“I hate it when this kind of shit pops up. Marlin, pack up your stuff, we can do this later when there isn't anything else happening.” The scientist gave a glare towards Reaper, but obliges, putting things back in the case.
Reaper then turned to the guards at the door “Stay here, he moves the wrong way and I give you permission to co-cock his ass.” Two salutes and a harmonious “sir!” later, the 'general' and Marlin the scientist leave the room, the door staying open.
Minutes pass, the silence broken only by the sounds of the engine... then the explosion came. It shook the hull, causing both soldiers to stumble.
“What the fuck was that?” On guard asked to the other, who shrugged, then pushed a button on his helmet. “Judas, what the hell is going on?” A voice comes out, said through the voice projector built within the helmet.
“The EVO has an old GPS signal transmitter, it's broadcasting our position to everyone! We've got an Advantist assault team headed our way!” Advantists... not good. I started to think of a way to get out of here, the advantists would kill me for certain if they found me like this.
The left-hand soldier looks at his partner “Think we should...?” His partner shook his head “No, we have our orders. Reaper would have our heads if we did.”
An idea entered my mind and, with no other option, interject into their conversation. “Yet you heard him, it's the alterists coming, get caught down here by them and it might not go we-”
“Shut up EVO.” Left hand soldier barked at me, before saying to his partner “Reaper might have said we have to stay and watch him, but we can still do that on the other side of the door.”
“What an excellent idea.” The other one says as they retired to the other side of the door, an ensuing conversation took place, yet even with the door open I couldn't make out what they were saying. Attempting to get free of the cuffs made no success, even turning human did not work, as the cuffs shifted to keep their hold on my arms. Time ticked away as the the sounds of AA guns managed to get to my ears and the two guards grew more and more nervous, but then I heard the one sound I didn't expect... that of an EMP.
All the lights and sounds had died, turning the room pitch black, but the EMP did something I had hoped for... the cuffs fried and unlocked. Pulling both arms free I roll my sore shoulders while staring into the darkness... then came the screaming.
The screams echoed down the corridors and into the cell, and it was followed by a roar, but not exactly like one, it was like a simultaneous roar and screech.
“My god! That monster is loose! Now can we defy orders?”
“Fuck it, I'm not going to be sitting down here waiting for it to reach us. Reaper can court martial us later, Let's go.” They ran off towards the creature or whatever it was, leaving me all alone.
Orange glow strips started to activate along the top and bottom edge of each wall, casting some light but still adding to the scare factor. Smiling, I poked my head out and looked down the corridor, and see not a single soul. Appraising my unbelievably good luck, I step out into the corridor and went in the opposite direction of the soldiers.
My luck wasn't as good has I had previously thought, because I ran into a dead end, the only door there lead to a cell similar to the one I was in, minus any occupant. Turning around I ran past my old cell, another one which had it's door busted open, and head up the first stairwell I saw, only to get greeted by a scene out of a horror movie. Bodies littered the floor, roughly a full dozen, most of the bodies were mutilated in some way, claws, torn limbs, some even had spines stabbing through their armor. Feeling sick, I looked over as a soldier screamed and was tossed into sight, bashing against the wall before she slid down and went still. I thought they were right about this thing being a monster, and that I needed to get out of here.
I decided to go to the right, away from whatever that thing was. I pick up one of the fallen soldier's guns and head onwards. I come across a very clear sign hanging at the middle an intersection.
← Flight deck / bridge
↑ Armory and storage / engine room
→ personnel quarters / combat control
↓ Brig / interrogation rooms
The armory would be my first stop, get some armor and hopefully aurora back. I ran along the corridors, running into a few soldiers, which I shoot in the leg while storming ahead. Soon enough I reached the door for the armory, twice as reinforced as the cell doors, but had been blown open however.
I ducked under the jagged top half of the remains of the door, and hear a click as a gun was pointed to the side of my head, then quickly pulled back.
“Oh hey, nice to see another dragon aboard this vessel.” Says a deep tone with mirth, I looked towards him and my eyes widened when I saw a four-armed wingless dragon looking at me. Cyan scales, sharp eyes of midnight blue, and the dragon was dressed in pre-WW3 armor, a black plate carrier and a pair of tan cargo pants with old-steel knee-pads. His right- hands had a pistol held in each, while the other arms were holding a box of C-18 high-explosive.
“What the hell?” Was all I could say.
He laughed at that, though the laugh was a little unstable sounding. “Just as confused as me? Fun then. I have no idea where I am, and i'm guessing you don't either, am I right?” One nod of my head later... “Knew it, anyway, you should get off the ship, it's not in the best of condition, and definitely won't be when I'm done.”
My confusion grew greater at this, but I needed something. “You wouldn't happen to have seen a arm guard around here that looks different than the rest?”
“Oh, you mean this?” His lower arm holstered it's pistol at the waist and drew aurora out from behind him. “Yeah that, they took it from me when I was captured.” He tossed it to me while he said “Sounds like an interesting story, they kept it in a safe I blew open by the way. Maybe you can tell that story later after I get off this ship. He ran off without another word, and shot a guard on his way out without a second thought.
I shake off the mysterious encounter and head to the armor racks, plenty of EVO armor vests and fatigues. I slip aurora back on and get shocked as it reconnected with my nervous system.
Ten minutes later I walked out of the armory dressed as a T-SAF EVO in his human form, and a rifle balanced on my shoulder.
Several soldiers pounded up the stairs, ignored me, and headed towards the flight deck, where most of the fighting was apparently going on. I followed them up to the flight deck, and stopped when I reached the flight deck. The entire area was a mess, there was wreckage of planes on the runways, craters in pit on those said runways, and several Advantist mechs stormed around, decimating anything that got near them with auto-cannons and rockets. T-SAF had already lost this fight, Advantist commandos were pushing forward, mowing down anything in their path. A Wolf EVO rushes one of the commandos, but is decapitated when the commando had a sword slide out of his arm and make a lightning-quick swing.
Reapers voice sounds over the sounds of war, emitted from the middle of the T-SAF forces “Fall back to the interior and establish a defensive position.” I slide left and away from the hatchway to below-decks, attempting to go around and avoid running into any of the soldiers. I start a quick run and keep going along the edge of the ship and realize it wasn't a simple aircraft carrier, but a supercarrier, one twice the size of an ordinary carrier, I could see the half opened drone launchers on the end of the runway. These launchers would slide open and a row of twenty or so drones would be launched out, ready to fight... the EMP prevented that. I make it around a burning hulk of a warbird, and see the Advantists' aircraft. They were similar in design to warbirds, but much larger and had a frame built to carry a compacted mech into the fight, these aircraft were also named stormchasers by the Advantists. There was three of them sitting together on the least damaged part of the flight deck.
By now the Advantists were fighting below decks, while the mechs stayed up top and acted like a sentry, luckily there was only two still active and it still gave me a clear shot to the aircraft. I made a dead sprint, but luck has a way of coming back and biting you after something good... because both clones of me step into my path. I stopped and slung the rifle off my shoulder, but they were likewise armed.
“Well well, what have we here?” Says the crazy one, who had a frenzied look in his eyes.
“Two psychopathic clones and a dragon?” I reply in a helpful tone. The crazy one snarled at me and opened his mouth to say something when his left arm gets blown off. I hear the report and look back to the bridge, the cyan dragon was there with a anti-mech rifle, he gave me a thumbs up and walked off. I look back at the crazy clone, he had shifted draconic and was getting up when an old friend of mine shows.
“Drop dead you piece of shit!” Nova comes in lightning fast and drop-kicks crazy me in the face, the result was crazy me falling over the edge of the carrier. Stoic me tries to turn and shoot him, but my rifle was still aimed... I pulled the trigger and he fell down with a smoking hole in his head.
Nova hopped up and looked over the edge, checking to see if crazy me had survived. I suddenly realize the condition Nova was in, all he had on was a torn and battered pair of urban camo pants, and the rest of him was a shock, he was covered in blood from head to toe, there was some areas of black blood on him, but there was no injuries I could see... he must have wrecked terrible vengeance upon any soldier in his path.
“What the hell happened to you?” I asked, still held in a state of surprise.
He snorts “Torture held out by a psychopathic clone, a doctor whom I hate with every fiber of my being, and a rampage through the decks, what the hell happened to you?” hate rooted in his voice.
“Almost the same. Um, let's find 101 and get out of here before the mech or the advantists catch us.”
He snorts “Forget 101, let's just leave.” He said this as he started moving towards the stormchasers.
I speed up and match his pace “Why should we for-”
“Because 101 is the bastard who betrayed us, that's why. I caught him in the combat control center, having a cheerful conversation with the scientist and Reaper, he's now somewhere in the ocean.” I grab a hold of his shoulder “Do you have any idea why?”
He glared at me “Does it matter?”
“Hell yes it does! For all we know they could have-”
Explosives went off in a chain, from the other end of the bottom of the ship to here, making us both stumble... now I know what that cyan dragon was using the C-18 for. I looked up at the stormchasers “Okay, we can chat about that later, we need to go before we end up swimming.
We ran to the stormchasers, a pilot walked out and I hit him in the gut, he doubles over and I crack him in the back of the neck, sending him of to dreamland. He was the only pilot and so I drag him inside, Nova didn't go inside, instead he took out the pilot on the second stormchaser and said out to me “I'll take this one, we'll meet at their base.”
It was a good plan, fly into advantist territory as a returning commando squad, minus the squad. Pulling down the slide near the entrance to the door, the hatch closes and leaves me alone with the unconscious pilot. The front of the stormchaser didn't have a window, or any visible controls... I felt stumped. Until I realize this was an advantist vehicle. Pulling the helmet off of the pilot, I slip it on and get an advanced HUD, with a list of commands and settings. Searching through them I found the flight controls, a mental thought and it highlights the option. A screen takes up most of the helmet visor, showing an outside view that panned when I looked around, nobody was heading towards the stormchasers so my best guess is that the explosions took all or most of them out.
The mobius generator starts and a new list of options enter the HUD, The one I liked best was RTB, or return to base. I select that one and a world view pops up, showing the flight path... huh, we were east of Cuba. Apparently 'base' was the 12th fleet, positioned 100 miles off the coast of Britain. The ship moved out of hover and started it's flight towards the fleet. I link the helmet controls to aurora and recline in the pilot's chair, thinking on how I was going to get through this.
Beware advantists, some EVOs are incoming...