It was another one of those peaceful days when you (that is if you are a Martian Mouse stuck on Earth) would just die to have some goon show up so you can beat the living daylights out of them. Or better yet, Limburger! Well, that's exactly how Biker Mice felt. Of course, everybody, even aliens from "outta space!" like lazy days when nothing has to be done, but when there are ten or twenty of those days, it becomes boring. Now imagine two months like that, and you will understand what is happening. Biker Mice From Mars and Charley were on the roof of Last Chance Garage.
"Hey, Charley, babe," called Vinnie. "Are there any new movies out? Anywhere?"
"Nope," Charley answered looking through the newspaper. "Oh, wait " she turned to Vinnie, checking whether he was listening. " there is movie you have never seen, and a good movie too."
"Fine print Who spilled water on the program guide?! Oh man, I can't make out the title. It's on ShowTime right now, if you wanna know "
Vinnie didn't let her finish. He ran inside, forgetting to slam the door behind him.
"Oh, there I can see the title now. I believe it says 1960-something, 'Romeo and Juliet'. Vinnie has never seen that movie, and probably never will want to," she said and smiled at the others.
"Is this some sort of a practical joke?" sounded Vinnie's voice coming from the door.
"It " Charley didn't finish as the windows exploded out of a building across the road. Smoke and fireballs followed out of those windows, with the sound deafening everybody for the next minutes and leaving them in trance. Coming out of it, Biker Mice From Mars saw two goons on motorcycles, as the only moving things on the street, riding at top speed and looking back occasionally.
"Let's go!" yelled Throttle, as they ran to their bikes. Charley ran after them. She managed to hop on Vinnie's bike a nanosecond, before he zoomed off. Vinnie would be quite surprised, if he was not concentrating on the road, going at top speed. Charley was surprised, however, that she could do that, since she failed the previous times.
The Biker Mice From Mars were very close to the goons already, when Charley looked up at a tall building 200 feet in front of them. What she saw scared her, but not enough to loose control.
"Vinnie, stop!" she screamed. Vinnie replied without turning around and getting closer and closer to the building.
"Vinnie, stop this bike at once!" she didn't realize how literally he would take that. Vinnie pulled the brake and, in order not to lose control of the bike, turned it around. Charley was not ready for such a sudden shift in speed, her hands could not withstand the force, she let go and flew off the bike, and rolled on the ground, closer and closer. This time, she was too scared to think, to stop or to roll in a different direction. She saw a red "X" on the ground, two feet away and fear gripped her. All she could do, was close her eyes
The other mice slowed down a more gentle way and came back to where Vinnie was. Vinnie followed her with his eyes, not realizing what was going on. She had rolled longer than gravity and momentum would make her roll, and his first idea was that she was just trying to show off. The he saw something of a darker color on the ground couple feet away from her and it was too late as he realized what it was
Another deafening explosion shook the ground beneath their feet, causing them to fly back and fall on the pavement about three yards behind their original position. Huge stones fell down everywhere. One hit Modo, bit to his luck it was a small stone. The others were hit just by little pebbles. They got up brushing off sand and dust and looking around.
"Is everyone okay?" asked Throttle, looking at the dark alley. Three bikes rode out of the alley and made some sort of an affirmative noise. Vinnie raised his head and gave the mice a scared look.
"Charley!" was the only word that came out of his mouth.
She woke up from her slumber, which seemed to have lasted a lifetime.
She wished that she wouldn't have to. But, even the sweet lies of dreams,
everyone must wake up from. Wake up and realize it was all just a dream.
Even if they don't want to wake up to the harsh reality...
She woke up and looked around. It was warm, very strangely warm, like she never thought possible, yet, it really was nice and warm and it wasn't just a dream. It wasn't hot, but just right. She looked at the window and saw it opened, with all of the lovely summer air blowing in. She smelled the air and nice again, it was strange. Flowers? She asked herself and smelled the air again. Here? She could see them, lying down in her bed on her back and without trying, she could see the green, red, pink, blue, yellow and purple, mountain-covered land outside the window. Ah, we finally did it, she thought. However, once her eyes got used to the lighting, she could see that the green and red and yellow and blue was a poster and flower scent was actually a bottle of perfume that stood opened next to her bed.
She pulled on her clothes and walked outside the room. Outside, the first thing she saw, was a table, blocking most of the hallway. It was cluttered with papers and a mouse was sitting behind it, reading, writing, and typing on his computer. Odd, she thought. The mouse heard her footsteps and looked up.
"Why, hello, there," he said. "I see you're awake. Good, I'll report that," he said picking up the phone and dialing a number. After a couple seconds of waiting, he said, "Yes, she's awake... Thank you... I'll do that... out." He looked up at her. "You are free to go," he said.
She walked past him and started walking down the corridor, when she heard a noise. She turned around and was knocked off her feet by something flying by...
"Darlin', babe, you okay?" a familiar voice sounded. She opened her eyes and shut them immediately as the bright light hit her used to the darkness eyes. However, in that half of a second when here eyes were opened, she saw a figure in front of her, distorted to a colorful blob by the light of the lamp behind it.
"Honey, you there?" she heard it again. Suddenly, she saw the light turn low and she tried to make another attempt to open her eyes. It worked and the light was no longer the problem, but she still could not see anything around her. She figured out, even though she could not see nor test her idea, that someone was standing between her and the light, blocking it. As her eyes got more used to the light, she got a better idea of the people (or person) in front of her. The more her eyes adapted the better she could see and now she knew that there were two guys in front of her.
"Um, huh? What?" she said.
"Honey, are you okay?" asked one closer to her.
"Yeah, baby," the other said.
"Yeah, I'm okay, thank you," she answered, trying to see them better. She tried to get up, but fell on the floor again.
"Oh, gees, baby, let me help ya," said one and gave her his hand. She took it and tried to stand up. As her right foot touched the ground, cutting pain struck through her entire body and she fell again, even though the guy's hand was still holding her. He immediately changed his grip and the next thing she knew, she was lying in his arms. Feeling a bit uneasy, she tried to twist out. He understood that motion and gently placed her on the ground.
"Thanks," she said smiling at him, even though she STILL could not see his face, just a blurry spot and still had the terrible wave of pain starting in her ankle and washing up through her entire body.
"Um, here, you dropped this," the other guy said, handing something to her. "Oh, man! They're broken!" he exclaimed and put the object in her opened hand. She brought it close to her eyes and saw what it was. Glasses! My glasses? She thought. I don't wear glasses. She could see, thought still blurry, that one of the lenses was cracked five ways. She wondered how it still remained in there and didn't fall apart. The other lens was not cracked, but it looked strange. She attempted to feel it, but her fingers went right through the frame. She now figured out why it looked odd. It was missing! So, that's why everything around me is a blur, she thought. Impaired vision.
"Hey, baby," said one of the guys. His voice sounded familiar, both of them did. Where have I heard it before, she thought, unable to recognize it in her mind. "Do you have another pair at home?"
"Um, I don't think so," she answered.
"Will you be able to get home safely?" the other one asked.
"Um... I don't know," was her answer.
"How about we take you home, eh, baby?" said the first.
"Hm, are you sure it's not too much trouble?" she asked, thinking, well, at least they would show me where "home" is.
"Hm, no! Not any trouble at all!" said the first and whistled. She watched something blue, something greenish-gray, and something grayish-black appear out of nowhere. Listening to the sounds and comparing the things to the approximate forms in her head, and applying the situation, she figured out that they were bikes.
"Um, no, Nightsky, you will stay here, baby cannot ride you now, she's hurt," said one of the guys. The other one picked her up, placed her on the greenish-gray bike, wrapped some rope-like thing around her waist, sat in the front, and they rode off.
"Well, baby, we're here," said one. He took her off the bike and carried her to a big, rock like something. They walked up to something, she was clear now was a door and stopped.
"Um, baby, can you open the door please?" asked the guy who was carrying her.
"Um, what? How?"
"Press your finger to that button, over there, oh, yeah, you can't see, here," he said, taking her hand and pressing something black on the wall with her index finder. Noiseless, the door opened, and they walked in. She immediately ended up on the couch, and the guy who was not carrying her, yelled.
"Hey, Mrs. Dellou!! Baby's hurt!"
"What? What happened?" asked a kind voice. That voice sounded very familiar and close to home, she thought.
"Baby was hit by something and... well, we think she broke her shin," said the other guy.
"Baby!" the lady, who they called Mrs. Dellou, exclaimed. "Baby. Baby? Baby..." her voice trailed off, as the girl named Baby lost her last link with the outside world...
"Baby? BABY!!" she heard a voice. Immediately, she associated it with one of the guys she met after she fell. He was the one who carried me, she thought.
"What was that?"
"What was what?" she asked, confused.
"You were singing, what?"
"I... I don't remember... what happened?" she said.
"Um, you fell unconscious, and... we were so scared for you!" he said and hugged her, as if he was afraid she would die. As he held her in his arms, she started humming a melody. At first, she was just humming, repeating it over and over, but then, she started singing is quietly, even though not from the beginning...
"... never, had I imagined
My living without your smile.
Feeling, knowing, you're hearing me
It keeps me alive, alive.
And I know you're shining down on me from heaven,
Like so many friends we lost along the way.
And I know eventually we'll be together, together
One sweet day..."
Her voice died as she realized that she wasn't the only one in the room.
"That song! What is it?" the guy asked, releasing her.
"Um, I dunno... hm..." she said thinking.
"Well, you must have heard it somewhere... otherwise, you wouldn't have known every word of that part."
"I probably did, I just don't remember..." her own voice seemed distant to her.
"Just, don't lose conscience again, okay, Baby?"
"I'll try," she said, smiling weakly. She still could not see past her nose, which for some reason was grayish-white. She reached out her hand, and gently followed the contours of his face with the tips of her fingers. She felt him smile, when her fingers passed over his mouth. She also noticed that he was a mouse, not that that was strange or disturbed her.
"Sorry," she said, once she realized what she was doing.
"No, that's okay," he answered. "I got used to it the last time when you lost your glasses, remember?"
"No," was the answer.
"Oh, okay, well, anyway, you lost your glasses in a crevice and couldn't see, so you kept felling people's faces to figure out what they were doing," he said and chuckled, recalling the event in his mind. A weird noise cut through the air. Baby, who already got used to having that name, turned to the source, needlessly, because she couldn't see it anyway. The guy got up and walked to where the noise kept coming from in even intervals. He spent a couple seconds there, then came back, with something black in his hand. He placed it on his knees, adjusted the top part and pressed a button. Baby could see light coming from there, but she could not figure out what it was.
"Yes, I'm listening," he said.
"We have just gotten a report that the people from Abule III have launched something they call HST. We as yet have not a single idea on what HST might stand for, but we are searching for the answer. Out," said a female voice quickly and the connection broke off.
"HST..." said Baby. "HST... I know what that is," she said in a non-caring voice. "Yeah, I do know what that means..."
"What?" the question was asked immediately.
"HST... Hubble Space Telescope... the Earth's first satellite-based telescope..." she continued, thoughts far away. She saw green meadows and flowers and trees. She saw gray hi-ways and tall glass-like buildings. She saw faces of people she had never met, places she had never been to, sights she had never seen. She saw...
"... scope, huh, Baby?" he asked, pulling her back into the world of reality.
"What? Pardon, I wasn't listening. What did you say?"
"What is this Hubble Telescope?"
"Um, humans made it to look out into space. It's a satellite of Earth."
"Humans? Earth? What's that?"
"Um... well, Earth is.. Earth... a planet.. third from the Sun..."
"Um, you know, the big shiny circle up in the sky," she said, not really understanding why he was asking such simple questions.
"Oh, you mean Abule!"
"Humans call it the Sun," she answered.
"And what did you call Abule III again?"
"Um.. Earth. And humans are the intelligent creatures that live there," she said simply.
"Um, and does this Telescope pose any threat?"
"Threat to what?"
"To our existence being unknown by the population of Abule III."
"Um, well, technically yes. That thing is more powerful than ANY Earth-based telescope, so if they point it at Mars, there would be a possibility that we would be seen," she said.
"Hm, okay, wait here, I gotta report this," he said pressing some buttons on the object, that Baby identified as a phone. She saw the light come on again and the same female voice.
"Yes?" the female said.
"Um, Baby has figured out what HST stands for."
"Baby?" he said, turning to her. "Say it."
"Um, Hubble Space Telescope, um, ma'am," Baby answered, not really sure of what to call the lady on the phone.
"Which means? Um, wait a second," she said and her voice disappeared for a few minutes.
"What are your names?" she asked coming back.
"Eron Dane," said the guy.
"Um, Baby..." Baby started unable to figure out the rest
"Megganda Dellou," Eron whispered, helping her.
"Megganda Dellou," said Baby. "Thanks," she said to Eron.
"You two are to come to the Main Tower, immediately," said the female and broke off the connection, before Eron could say that Baby broke her leg.
" I hate when that happens," he said. "She never waits for a reply."
"She probably had another call to answer," said Baby.
"Hm, you always have to find a positive reason to everything," he sighed. "Hm, okay. Now, how are you going to get there?"
"Hm... I don't know... I really don't... I mean, I really don't want to trouble you like that, carrying me again," she answered.
"Trouble? Hon, baby! Not at all!"
"Um, still," she said unsure.
"Okay, you know what? To make you feel better about this, how about I just carry you to the door and put you on Nightsky?"
"Okay, I like that version better," she agreed.
Eron picked her up and carried her to the door, just like he said, he would. Outside, he whistled, and two bikes, a black and gray and a greenish one appeared. Eron gently place Baby on the black and gray one and sat on the other bike. Now that she was sitting on the bike, Baby leaned on it, so that her face was right next to the top cover. Now, she could see that the reason the bike seemed gray in places, was because it was black, covered with painted stars of different sizes and shapes. The pattern seemed familiar to her. She could see constellations, she knew their names, positions, but she also knew that she had never seen them on her home planet's, Tyrr's, sky. That fascinated her. Only after a few minutes, she returned to the normal world, after she heard Eron's voice.
"Um, I just remembered something. You can't drive without your glasses," he said.
"I'm not going to drive," she answered.
"She is!" Baby said, pointing at her bike.
"Are you sure?"
"Yeah! What? You don't trust her?"
"Um, I DO... it's just that... that..."
"Relax! Everything will be fine!" Baby tried to comfort him.
"Okay... let's go!" he said and started riding away.
Baby patted her bike and Nightsky zoomed away, following Eron. She caught up to him pretty quickly and patted her bike again, telling it to remain at that speed. They rode for some time, neither Baby nor Eron remembered how much.
Suddenly, Eron saw a row of bikers, blocking their way, about half a mile ahead.
"Baby! Slow down! There are some people, blocking the way, over there!" he yelled to her, so that she could her him over the wind.
"What?!" she yelled, not hearing.
"SLOW DOWN!!!" he screamed, and watched Baby's face, as she understood what he was saying and, with a scared face, stopped her bike. And just in time too. She was very close to the people who blocked their way. Eron and Baby rode up to them.
"Pardon us, but could you please move?" asked Eron.
Baby could not see what was going on, everything happened too quickly. She saw the strangers move and she saw a bright light. It flew from one of the strangers right at her companion. She looked at him, with her blind eyes, trying to figure out what was going on. She felt him looking at her for a second, then it was over. She saw him fall off his bike and land on the ground with a loud thud. Looking back at the strangers, she barely saw movement, but heard and saw another flash fly by and at the bike. In horror, she saw the bike next to her explode...
"Eron!" she almost cried out. He was the only one she knew in this entire world of fuzzy shapes...
Vinnie had finished reading his comic book and was looking around, bored out of his skull.
A nurse was moving a roller tray through the hallway, as quietly as she could. A baby cried somewhere. Then it was quiet again.
He never realized that he fell asleep, just sitting there, but a loud noise of doctors and sergeants and nurses running through the hallway with a stretcher, trying to stay ahead of imminent death to the patient, woke him up and made him aware.
He looked around and saw Modo, helping a nurse get up. From what he could gather, she fell or was knocked off by the moving mass of life-savers and a stretcher. She was up and she and the helpful mouse were staking the bottles, cans and boxes of medicine back on her trolley.
Another hour passed, mostly uneventful, with the exception of nurses walking around, minding their own business. People came and left. Some guy sat there since before they came and left a few hours later as a happy father. Another nap caused by boredom. Modo and Throttle were both sleeping, while sitting perfectly straight, so if their eyes were opened (and Throttle's probably were, since his semi-mechanical eyes could be just turned off and he had his shades on so it was hard to tell) no one would suspect that they were sleeping.
He fell asleep again, but was awakened by a light tap on his shoulder. He opened her eyes and saw Charley. She smiled at him, not saying a word. He studied her. She was wearing a long, white, almost angelic dress, that made her look like a goddess. She reached out her hand and he took it. She was smiling. He got up and heard beautiful music. She reached her other hand and put it on his shoulder. They started dancing. Charley tapped his shoulder like she would a table if she was bored. At first, he could hardly feel it, but she tapped harder and harder and her cold finders dug into his shoulder....
He opened his eyes and saw a man's face. His lips were moving, but no sound came out. He stopped tapping when Vinnie opened his eyes.
"..r... Sir? Sir?" Vinnie finally heard the man.
"Uh? What?" Vinnie asked, confused and not recognizing Charley doctor.
"She'll live and she is awake now. You can see her," he smiled.
"Uh? See who?"
"Miss..." the doctor looked at his clipboard. "Charlene.. is that right? Davidson."
"Charley?" Vinnie asked, finally getting everything straight. He remembered now. They were riding and she yelled him to stop. He did and she fell of, ground exploding below her. They called 911 and she was brought to this hospital... "Can I see her?"
"By all means," the doc smiled.
"Come," the medic said and started walking down a corridor, turning back every once in a while, checking whether he was followed. He was. They came upon a door, at which the doctor stopped and motioned Vinnie to walk in. He then left quickly, disappearing behind a corner in seconds.
Vinnie walked in and closed the door as quietly as he could.
There was no one inside, but he heard the patterned beeps of a cardiograph. The room was small, tiny even and there was a door on the other side. Vinnie crossed the room and opened the door.
Inside, everything was white. The bed, the sheets, the walls, the medical equipment, everything.
He walked up to the bed and sighed. There she lay, on the brink of death, hurt and in pain, yet sleeping and beautiful. He pulled up a chair and sat by her bed, watching the slumbered face.
"So, how long will she be this way, doc?" asked Throttle, looking at the face on the pillow.
"She is in an yet-unidentified version of coma. The state she is in, how long it would take her to come out of it, or how much damage is made to her is still unknown," sighed the man with the white suit.
"Is there anything you can do?"
"Unfortunately, we cannot assign any treatment without knowing the cause, since the results could yield mortality. We also have no treatment for her until she comes out of her coma except for keeping her alive with these," he pointed at the medical equipment, set in the room.
"Okay, we would like to stay here," said Modo.
"Oh, yes," the doctor smiled and hurried out of the room.
"So, now what? We lost Charley...." said Throttle. He immediately got checked into the wall with the door and no equipment by Vinnie.
"DON'T EVER SAY THAT!!!" Vinnie yelled in rage. "We have NOT lost her, got that?"
"Chill, bro... I'm very sorry too..." said Throttle.
"She WILL come out and she will do that soon, got that?!"
"Yes! Now, please let go of me," said Throttle.
"Ma'am, you can't go in there!" yelled the nurse over the counter, unable to stop the person who was almost running down the hallway. "Stop her!" she yelled to the crowd of a few people standing around, waiting for their own business.
The intruder was a tall female wearing a black and brown body suit. She was wearing a mask, that covered her whole head with something that looked like speakers on either side. Her jet black hair escaped the mask and flowed down her back.
As she raced down the hallways, her perfect memory recollected what the nurse had said moments earlier.
"... then turn right there and it's the fourth door on the left," she had said. "However, I'm afraid you cannot see your friend at this time. You will have to come back tomorrow," were the lines that the female recited over and over in her mind. She made the turns and stopped at the fourth door on the left. Standing very close to the wall, she took out her gun, which looked very advanced and certainly far from what a normal, bona-fide woman would carry around in her purse. She turned quickly and kicked the door so hard, it flew out of its frame and hit the opposite wall, dropping down on the floor.
She looked around the empty little room.
She hesitated of a second, thrown off by the existence of the tiny room, but then collected herself and opened the other door. First thing she saw were three guns were pointing at her face.
Vinnie was sitting on a chair, reading yet another comic. Throttle was sitting on the floor, his head resting on the side of the bed, tired. Modo was standing by the wall and staring into space. They were all tired. Vinnie had slept the least and his bros didn't get much sleep either. When they were free they were waiting for Charley to wake up. When they were not, they were fighting criminals and Limburger's goons. Business as usual, if not counting the lack of sleep.
Vinnie looked up from his comic when he heard rapid footsteps outside in the hallway. His hearing got much better and all his other senses were now sharper, he didn't know why. He got back down to reading as he assumed that someone just felt worse and a nurse ran to help out.
The sudden clamor in the tiny room caught everyone totally unawares and they took their guns out without even looking at what the others were doing. It was quiet and then the doorknob slowly turned and the door slammed open. Someone was standing there and only the barrel of the gun could be seen from the darkness.
Everything happened quickly. The person standing in the darkness suddenly swept Throttle off his feet. Modo tried to catch him, but was too late and being occupied with controlling his own balance totally forgot about the intruder, who quickly knocked him off his feet.
Vinnie dropped his gun when he saw the weapon of the intruder pointing first at Throttle, who was closer, then motioning to drop his.
Forgetting about the bros, the intruder stepped over Throttle, who was still lying on the floor, and walked over to the bed, pointing the gun at Charley's face.
Suddenly she was knocked off her feet by someone from the back. She fell
on the floor and saw Throttle with an evil grin, which then changed to an
expression of anger as he picked up his gun from the floor and aimed at
"Take off your helmet," said Throttle not taking his eyes off the assassin. He noticed that it looked a lot like a Martian helmet. There were even places for the ears to go. He watched the person in front of him hesitate. "Take it off!" he yelled.
The female reached her hand down to her belt, took something off of it and flipped the top open. There was a little flat square there that looked like the signal receiver on a TV. She placed her thumb there and pointed it at Charley.
"Look!" said Vinnie who was the closest to the bed. He saw Charley's eye open and she sat up in her bed. She was staring straight at the assassin and looked like a zombie. Vinnie slapped her cheek. "Snap out of it, babe!"
She blinked at looked at her assassin again, this time her expression was full of hatred. She grabbed Vinnie's gun out of his holster and aimed it at the assassin's neck.
"Take off your helmet," she stated in a level, yet scary voice.
"Oh, please... I do dislike catfights," said the intruder in a somewhat familiar voice.
"I know you do," said Charley with an evil smile. "And you know it won't cost me a heartbeat to blow your head off, so take it off."
"Okay, fine," the intruder took off her helmet and revealed her pretty face. Despite everyone's expectation of her being a Martian mouse, she was a human. However Charley grinned again.
"How wise..." she said and aimed at the human's head. "And now, I don't care who loves you," she said in a relatively normal, but steady voice, looked at Throttle for a split-second and looked back with an evil smile. She quickly lowered her gun and shot the female's thigh.
"But, still... I wouldn't want to waste you... for politics' sake," She got up, walked to the handicapped intruder and grabbed that same panel out of her hand. She pressed her own thumb against the "signal receiver" square and then threw it on the floor. She watched it crack and break into pieces and then looked up at her assassin.
She was changing quickly, becoming more familiar with every second. In a few seconds a Martian mouse was staring back. She looked at Throttle.
"Carbine?" he asked confused and overwhelmed.
"Yes, Carbine, hon, you remember her right?" said Charley evilly.
"Bu... but why?" Throttle asked.
"Hm... you want to know why, eh?" she put her gun to Carbine's face. "Tell him."
"I.. I can't.. it's against the law..."
"Oh? Well, it's against Martian law. We are on Earth. So spill it," said Charley.
"You know I can't!"
"And you know I can kill you any day of my life, so start talking. I want to hear this too."
"Okay..." said Carbine and for the first time in her life, she was seen with a tear on her cheek.
A few years ago, I was walking down one of the hallways in the main building,
when one of our scientists, Firestar ran up to me from the back and scared
me out of my wits.
"Carbine!" she yelled to me.
"Fire!" I sighed when I realized it was her. "You scared me..."
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean it," she said switching the topic immediately. "You have been reassigned."
"What?" I was shocked. The assignment I was currently on promised to shape my career in the best way I thought possible and now I was reassigned?
"You have been assigned to work with me and a few others on a," she whispered in my ear. "Top Secret Mission."
"Uh-hum, and you'll still be working on your old assignment so that," she whispered again, "No one would notice."
"Uh-huh..." I sighed, realizing that not all was lost.
"Come!" she said giggling. She was always one of the happier looking ones. I walked with her down endless hallways, existence of which I never knew possible. We walked for what seemed to be hours, until we came upon a dead-end.
"Hm..." she said, puzzled. I looked back and saw the hallway, white as snow going off back too far to see the end.
"Are we lost?" I asked, even though I knew we were.
"No... I have good enough memory for these things... we made all the right turns. We are not lost. We are in the right place. The rest of the hallway is not though...." she knocked on the wall that blocked our way. The wall lit up in some sort of mercurial glow and Firestar's hand went right through it. "Oh yeah... now I remember! Kenny told me they were going to put a portal here...." she smiled and disappeared, walking through the wall. Hesitantly, I followed her.
Inside was a room, quite big in size. I could see the far end wall, but it was far away still. Two mice and a human were sitting on the floor in a circle, talking about something. Firestar clapped her hands.
"Everyone! This is our last member, Carbine," she said to the group.
"Okay, Carbine, this is Kenny," she pointed at dark-gray male mouse. "That's Jerry," she pointed at the other male mouse.
"And I'm Tom!" said the female human and snarled, mimicking a cat's pouncing.
"And that's Emily. Ignore her, she's from down there," said Firestar.
"Down where?" I asked.
"She means the little green toxic place called Earth," said Emily.
"Oh... okay..." I said.
"Hey, ain't you that General mousie?" asked Jerry.
"Hush up!" said Emily and put her hand on his mouth so he wouldn't say no more.
"What?" I asked.
"Ignore him," smiled Emily.
"Okay... so, what are we doing here?" I asked.
"Oh, Fire didn't tell ya?" Asked Kenny.
"Nope..." I admitted.
"Oh, well, then..." he said and turned away. Immediately, a holographic screen appeared behind him, but so that I could see. A whole bunch of colors lit up on it, writing out the objective of our mission. When it was done, it disappeared, being replaced by a holographic DNA string. "We are here to genetically engineer a weapon." he said.
"You work in the government, right?" I nodded.
"Same difference. Did they tell you there might be an attack by some green species?"
"Well, anyway, they fear we might get attacked in near future. That is why us five were called in to mess around with genes and make ourselves a weapon."
"But, I know relatively nothing about genetics..." I said.
"Oh? Then what are you doing here?" asked Jerry. He caught an evil glance from Kenny and recoiled back.
"Well, that is why you need one of these," Jerry smiled, showing me something that looked like a mix of a surrenge and a pill. It looked metal.
"What is that?"
"Do you have a port?" Kenny asked ignoring me.
"Um... a what?"
"A port. This hole in the back of your neck," he walked up to me. "Turn around." I did. He moved my hair to the side. "Um, no, you do not... okay, we'll make you one..." he said. He watched my shocked expression. "Oh, relax, babe, this won't hurt a bit." he smiled.
"Here, give me your hand," he said. I did. A holographic surrenge appeared by him and he took it, quickly pumping into my arm whatever the contents of the surrenge were. Everything blacked out in seconds.
I don't remember anything that happened afterwards. I woke up, feeling
great. I sat up on the hard floor and looked around. The others were sitting
on the floor a few yards away from me, in a circle, chatting about something
and discussing. I remembered everything that happened before I blanked out.
I felt my neck and fear almost struck me as I felt a hole in the back of
Emily was the first to notice me.
"Oh, lookie, she's up!" she said loud enough so that echo replied to her a few times.
"So, did it hurt?" asked Kenny. I shook my head. "See? Now, what were you afraid of?" He didn't wait for an answer. "Here, plug it in," he gave the the gadget I was earlier. I saw his friendly smile, so I pushed the metal pill in the hole in my neck and looked at him.
"Now, access it."
"Can you wiggle your ears?"
"How is that relevant?"
"Could you always?"
"How did you learn?"
"I... it just came to me over time..."
"Okay, imagine pulling info out of that memory rod, just like you did when you tried to wiggle your ears," he heard Jerry laugh behind him. "Shut up," he snapped at Jerry.
"Hm..." I tried.
After a while, I got it and suddenly knowledge of genentics poured into my head faster than I could absorb it. My head began to hurt and the pain increased every second.
"Slow down!" I heard Kenny's faint yelling.
I tried, but the pain became too much and I fell unconscious.
When I woke up, not only did I know more about genetics than I ever thought possible, but I also knew our mission and the perpose of it. Many things were decided before the last member, me joined in. Our little creation was supposed to be a female, with quadratic genotype....
"With a what genotype?" asked Vinnie.
"Okay, a creature with quadratic genotype is born with one DNA string in each cell, okay?"
"Then, every certain period of time, that string splits, becoming two identical strings," Carbine looked at the people around her. "That creature can modify every string, but do it only once, after that it locks up and might distroy itself if attempted to modify again. Only one string can dominate at any point in time. That string controls the appearance of the creature. The rest are recessive, shrunk to sub-atomic level."
"So, basically, it's a shape-shifter..." said Throttle.
"Okay, go on."
So, we were to make a female "shape-shifter" with average strength
of ten G, but quiet and calm and friendly and all that. We could make a
female shape-shifter with average strength of ten G, but adding nice characteristics
to that proved to be quite hard. If we made her friendly, she'd prove to
be unreliable in battle. We had to make her think for herself too much to
just listen to dumb commands, but not enough to revolt. When we finally
came up with what we thought was a perfect design, it was about right before
Plutarkians attacked our farthest bases. People in the cities didn't know
about it yet.
It was then when I found out that the portal at the end of the hallway lead to a space-station by Saturn. We were hit as the second defence line. She was just out of the test tube. We didn't have a name for her then. She walked up to me one day.
"Carbine," she said.
"I feel odd," she said quietly.
"Like something is wrong..."
"Hm... what do you suppose I do?"
"Check the external sensors..."
"Oh? Okay... come on," we walked up to the control room and she flipped on all the equipement.
"On screen!" she said. Starry sky. Nothing. She pressed some buttons which turned on other sensors and we both gasped. There was a ship, twice the size of our station, loaded with artillery and there were little one-man ships around it. Our creation hit the wall, which immediatelly sounded the alarm.
We were not prepared for anything. It hit us too quickly. Systems went out, one by one. She grabbed my hand and punched the wall, pushing me through the opening. It is still a mystery to me how in the world did she know where to go in a maze of tubes, electronics and cables. Somehow, she got me to the dock, faster than the Plutarkians were distroying the ship. She pushed me into one of the excape pods and was about to run back, but i held her.
"Where are you going?"
"To get the others!"
"No, you'll get killed!"
"But I have to go and get them!"
"Okay, but go quickly!"
"Toodles!" she ran off into a hallway.
I moved the escape pod closer to the exit and started to wait. I turned on the reciever and set it to intercept the input from the external sensors. I saw half of the ship on fire and blown away. I saw her running back in, carrying Emily. She waved me to get moving. I started the engine as she ran up to the pod and flopped Emily, who was unconscious inside. She pulled me out.
"What are you doing?"
"We all won't fit in there," she said closing the pod and pressing the button, which sent it out.
"We'll take the ship!" she said, pointing to the small, two-person, plane-like ship in the back.
"What is that?" I yelled barely hearing myself with all the explosions, plus the oxygen escaping the room through the hole, through which the pod went.
"It's a fighter, c'mon!" she got in and pulled me after herself. I sat behind her and she closed the glass top. The airlock opened and she masterfully flied the ship out of the dying station, carrying me with her. I just sat there. I had no controls and she was the pilot. There was nothing for me to do.
The station recieved its final blow, exploding, sending pieces of itself in all directions. The shockwave hit us a few seconds later and I was knocked out.
"I never knew exactly what happened and how we got back to Mars.
I never heard of Emily again either. To hide our creation, I told her to
morph into a girl who died a few days earlier in an accident. I compresed
most of her memory so that she didn't remember what happened before, amnesia,
but that knowledge was still there, but unaccesable. I also had to make
"I haven't heard from her since, until one day, someone responded to a national broadcast. I told her to come immediatelly and she did, but with company. that company had to be annihilated. I cleaned her memory again, compressing everything so she won't remember and sent her into our city.
"I do not know what happened to her between that point and when we got reports that she died in an accident. I went back to the site where it happened. It was an abandoned building. I found her body and extracted a few humdred cells, placing them into a microscopic probe. I had to set some of the flesh-eating bugs Emily brought with her from Earth that were to destroy our creation if something went wrong. She was never found again.
"I took a trip to Earth and injected that probe into a random female. And now, in our time of need, I have come back to retrieve our creation's genes," Carbine finished her story.
"Why do you need them? Can't you create another one?" Asked Vinnie.
"The original DNA sequence and most of the genetic engineering how-to was lost with the death of Kenny, Jerry and Fire. I do not know enough and cannot create a new prototype, but I can build one up from those cells."
"And where are those cells now?" Asked Vinnie. Carbine looked at Charley.
"In her?" he watched her nod. "But, why?"
"I picked her randomly. It wasn't supposed to be Charley. Or rather, it wasn't supposed to be anyone you knew. Because you met her, my task of retrieving the probe without it becoming common knowledge became harder. After considering all odds, I decided to kill her."
"You 'decided'? Just like that? To take away someone's life?" asked Throttle getting more angered by the second.
"This is war, Throttle. People die in wars. Some must die for the betterment of the rest," she stated.
"No, you are NOT killing Charley," said Vinnie.
"And who is there to stop me?" she asked. "You? Even all three of you will be no match for her when she is reincarnated! Part of the reason is, I want you back home..." she looked at Throttle. "Back home on Mars..."
"You are doing this so that we would come back?" asked Throttle.
"That is one of my reasons," she stated, collecting herself again.
"Um, I'd hate to interrupt you two, but what was her real name?" asked Vinnie.
"We didn't name her," said Carbine. "But, if it's the name that the parents of the dead girl, she mimicked the genes of, gave her, it's Megganda Dellou," she said calmly, unaware of the reaction that name might trigger.
The bros looked at each other.
"What did you say her name was again?" asked Vinnie.
"Megganda, or as some called her, Meggs, why?"
"You do know that she was my girlfriend, right?" he asked.
"No, but I do know that it was you who killed her," she said in a iron voice.
"What would it take you to get her out of Charley?" Asked Throttle.
"Charley's death," Carbine replied simply.
"Can't you just stick a surrenge in her and get that probe out?"
"Well, I could, only problem is, there are 14 gazillion cells in an average human body. The probe adds another cell. The chances of me getting it out by "sticking a surrenge" in her are very low. Almost inexistant, even."
"Where did you put it originally?"
"Where all the stuff from surrenges goes, in to bloodstream, of course!"
"Oh... okay... would it still be there?"
"It is programmed in auto-pilot. But the only directions are, a, not to get out of the body and b, not to go into the heart."
"Well, that's one place less to look," said Throttle.
"Um, where is Charley?" Asked Vinnie. Everyone looked back at the bed, but there was no one there. A piece of cement dropped on the bed and everyone looked up. There was a hole on the ceiling big enough from someone to get through that looked like someone ripped the ceiling apart.
"She didn't do that... did she?" asked Vinnie.
"Thing your genetic probe is acting upon her?" asked Modo.
"I doubt it, but it just might," said Carbine.
"Oh? Any other stunts your little creation can do that you didn't tell us about yet?"
"Um... I don't know... she don't care about how many people she'd killed if she's preperly stimulated..."
"If she's scared, she'll do anything to stay ahead, even kill those she cares about..." said Carbine with a look full of meaning.
"Does that mean we might not find her?"
"That means that we better not find her..." said Throttle.
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