Ebon has a new hunter, and another has returned to haunt him. part three
| Sitting in front of his desk at Finalsight, Ebon was at peace for the first time since the Psyver woman had paid a visit. The general chaos of a mistyped order that had upturned the entire system didn't leave him much time to ponder.
"Ebon! Ebon! Oh, damn, I think I broke something!" Ebon looked down at the vidcom to see a panicked Laelin poking at a hissing appliance.
Ebon shook his head, "Can't you get Fallen to fix it? I left her there."
"I know!" Laelin wailed, "But I royally fucked this thing up! She can't even get it running again."
"Then buy a new one."
Laelin paused, as if the thought had never even occurred to her, "Oh, yeah." she murmured.
"Goodbye, Laelin." Ebon pushed the little blue off button on the vidcom. Just in time to look up to a seething man in a white coat almost identical to Ebon's black.
"You!" the man in white barked.
"Yes, me," Ebon said levelly, looking at the livid man without blinking, "What can I do for you?"
"You can drop this merger crap and move your mind reading ass off my fund!"
"You're the one who proposed this. I am simply considering it. Nothing has been decided."
The man in white bristled visibly, "I proposed nothing! It was my capitalistic son!"
Ebon pushed a stack of papers forward, "Fine. Then sign this canceling the merge. It's no skin off my nose. My company is completely independent as is, and it is bigger than yours."
The man in white seemed completely nonplussed and he stared stupidly at the papers for some time, "You'll drop it? Just like that?"
"Yes. Like I said, the offer was being considered, nothing has been changed to make room for your company's assets." Ebon nodded slightly to another stack of papers, "Sign those if you wish to go through with the merge and hand the ownership over to me. Sign the ones in front of you if you wish to cancel the merge and go on your merry way. I'll forget this rude intrusion ever happened."
The man looked at Ebon for a time and signed the cancellation notice. Turning on his heel he stormed out of the room.
Ebon made his way slowly to the exit port he normally used to return to the Citadel. He had decided to walk from the Finalsight HQ to the outskirts of Aearth. He needed time to think and walking alone was as good a time as he could think of. As he made his way down a dark dingy street still supported by the old steel pillars he noted several figures closing in around him. "Hey now, give us your stuff and you wont get hurt." a voice - a man's - called from the darkness.
Ebon pulled a mental shield about himself, "What if I don't want to give you my stuff?" he decided to have fun with these goons.
"Don't make us mess ya up." another male voice called.
There were a lot of thugs, Ebon noted. Their mind patterns were burring into one entity. "I'd like to see you try."
A scruffy man dove from the darkness, spiked club upraised. Ebon dodged the man's awkward swing, grabbing his arm as he flew past. Twisting slightly, Ebon bent the man's arm up behind his back and brought his knee up into the man's elbow. There was a sharp pop as the man's arm broke and Ebon tossed him away. "Sonuvabitch!" the first speaker leapt from the shadows.
Skittering to the side, avoiding the man's fist, Ebon smiled, "You truly are amusing." snapping his mental powers out before him like a wall the man slammed into it with a crack.
Several more men seemingly materialized from the alley walls, but they didn't advance, "Formidable." a gruff voice hailed from a vacant spot in the circle, "Formidable indeed. I am impressed." Walking forward to fill in an empty spot was an old man, a very old man. Years and years of age were evident on his face and in his voice, but his build was by no means fragile. It almost appeared as if someone had glued an old man's head to a young man's body.
"These are your cronies?"
"I suppose you can call them that. More like believers."
Ebon raised an eyebrow, "Believers? In what?"
"In the Life-Giver."
"Some new age cult? Sorry, not interested."
"We don't care if yer interested," a burly man with red hair walked forward, smacking a steel pipe into the palm of his hand, "We want yer mind."
"Ah, crony one speaks. If you need brain power you're definitely not a candidate," Ebon smiled amusedly when the brute growled. Ebon was about to turn back to the misshapen old man when something hard connected with the back of his head. Ebon's vision swam and he vaguely registered the side of his face connecting with the pavement. He felt hands grab him and haul him off the ground and everything went black.
"Where is he?" Laelin looked at Tor, who shrugged.
"Why would I know? The man certainly is old enough to go out on his own." Tor turned back to his computer.
Laelin growled, "He should have been home by now! He never is off schedule!"
"Calm down, it's not like Ebon's life has been a series of normalcies as of late. Let him wander, he can take care of himself."
"I'm worried." Laelin ran a hand through her hair.
"Think, if he dies, you're free. You can go to Taerthin and make a real life for yourself."
Laelin glared at Tor as he swiveled around in his chair "Make a real life for myself? I am quite pleased with this life and if Ebon dies, you’re out of a job."
"My predicament is far less precarious than your own." Tor sighed, "There are many who would like to hire me in both Aearth and Taerthin. Go look for him, he might need you."
Ebon felt the metal biting into his wrists. Behind lids - to his vexation - that he couldn't coax open, Ebon envisioned a dusty dungeon with rusted shackles hanging from the walls. After concentrating for several moments on the searing pain in his wrists, Ebon opened his eyes. He was greeted with the sight of a dungeon-like complex, save for the fact that almost every surface was chrome and steel. Ebon swung his feet and realized that the pain could be attributed to the fact the he was hanging several feet from the chrome laden floor by only his wrists.
Ebon vaguely recognized the room. It's many machines, tanks, and devices all jogged a few dusty memories. He turned his head slightly and caught sight of an egg shaped capsule, a thin window placed in upper section of it. Just below it was a black number 13.
Ivory shivered, the drugs were setting in, thankfully. The cold steel tank seemed comfortable now. All the experiments had made Ivory bi-polar and now he was on a high and the entire world seemed right. It would bottom out soon, he knew, and he would slip into another suicidal rage.
He chewed on a strand of bone white hair and stared out of the thin window blankly. Ivory could feel the scientist coming and he fed on the woman's leaking energy; which set him on a new high.
"Experiment 666, Ivory Vector." The scientist in her immaculately clean white lab coat tapped on the rectangle window of tank 666. She smiled slightly when the man within stirred, "How are you doing Ivory?"
He turned his thoughts inward, 'watching' his own well being in spurts of blinding color. "Fine," Ivory whispered, barely audible through the steel walls, "For now."
The woman nodded and an elderly man joined her. His small withered head sitting on his oddly proportioned body. "Internal Viral Operative Rewrite. A pity your predecessor died. Together you would have made a formidable weapon."
That did it. Ivory hated being called by his full name, but he hated being compared to his predecessor more; his high dropped out. Ivory's eyes rolled back into their sockets and his mouth lolled open. He felt the power build in the back of his mind and roll to his fingertips. Snapping his eyes onto the misshapen man, Ivory let loose, his power denting the steel of his confinement cell. Ivory settled on the rear wall of his cell, spent and weathering a sensation that resembled an orgasm.
"Are you done, Ivory?" the woman cooed. Sometimes, only sometimes, Ivory felt the lab woman cared for him.
"Unhnn." Ivory groaned.
Ebon struggled against his bonds; he could feel the fear setting in as it had so many times when he had been locked in confinement cell 13. The room suddenly felt very small, and the air very thick, like inhaling syrup.
As the door to the laboratory slid open Ebon's claustrophobia set in. Sela walked in to see Ebon, the boy that, not so long ago she took care of, a grown man. She felt a pang of pain and motherly love for the brilliant boy whom she had trained to use his psychic powers, but she was too shocked to come any closer. Ebon hung from titanium bonds, blood dripping from the rents they cut in his wrists. He struggled and kicked at the wall, screaming, his eyes screwed shut.
She dropped her clip board and pulled a lever that lowered Ebon to the floor. She rushed to him as his legs gave way beneath him, crumpling to the ground. He still screamed and struggled as Sela pulled him into her lap. She stroked his hair like she had when he was a child and he slowly calmed. She had been glad he was doing well when she came to his home, but she didn't know he was still so troubled.
"Sela?" Ebon murmured as he looked up. His pale eyes were shining with tears and Sela saw him as a child again.
"Yes, it's me." she cooed, "Ebon, please, calm down." his breath still came in ragged gasps and he clutched her arm with a strength to break bones, but she would endure, for him.
"The walls," he tensed, "I can't breath Sela, they're too close. The air is too heavy."
"No, no it's not. Take deep breaths," She had been through this a thousand times before. She hated the fact that she had been the one to give him this horrid fear. "Deep breaths, Ebon. The air is clean, it's light."
"H-help me." the door slid open again and the misshapen old man meandered in.
Sela nodded, "Dr. Ailan."
"He still has claustrophobia?" Dr. Ailan looked down at Ebon, who was still curled in Sela's lap. "I would have thought he would have gotten over that. It's been six years."
"What are you going to do with him? You let him go a long time ago. I thought your experiments were done."
Dr. Ailan laughed, "You know nothing about me Sela, letting him go was part of the experiment. I know you visited him. How are his shields?"
"Strong." Sela helped the almost unconscious Ebon into a sitting position, "Almost three times as strong as when we let him go." She looked at Ebon and realized that she was talking about him like an animal.
"Good, he nurtured his powers. Perhaps Ivory will do the same."
"Ivory? You are going to let that maniac go? We were lucky that Ebon only went claustrophobic."
"I know. We are developing a drug for Ivory. It should temporarily nullify the low effect of his bi-polar."
"Temporarily?" Sela examined Ebon quickly, it looked like he was beginning to center himself again, "It's not like he can walk down to the local pharmacy to get these. And we can't exactly mail them to him!"
"Who is Ivory?" Ebon's voice was quiet and strained, and by the look on his face he wasn't really sure why.
"Experimental Battle Operations Nexus, E.B.O.N." Dr. Ailan kneeled in front of Ebon, who turned to look at him with unfocused eyes. "You have grown up."
Seeming to acknowledge Dr. Ailan's presence for the first time, Ebon's eyes focused and he jumped to his feet. "You should be dead!"
"Should I?" Dr. Ailan's voice dripped with false innocence.
"I crushed your head! I know I did, it has haunted my dreams for six years!" the still air around Ebon kicked up into a howling gale. Fixing his icy eyes on Dr. Ailan, he threw him away.
"Ebon!" Sela stood and held out a hand. Ebon only growled and the wind kicked up more, sending medical instruments spinning in the psychic maelstrom.
Ivory was elated; the sudden surge of psychic energy that had filled the complex had him drunk on power. I can get free now, the idea struck Ivory like a slap, and find this power source and suck it dry. Centering himself Ivory let the power fill him, mingling with his own. He envisioned the power curling around him and settling in coils that filled his tiny cell. With a huge mental push, Ivory fed out his power and opened the flood gates to the other, foreign power and his cell verily melted around him.
Floating above a pool of liquid steel, with the blood red sustaining fluid flying around him in jeweled orbs, Ivory laughed. His bone white hair snapped wildly around him, This power will be mine.
End--> Nightlife: Ivory
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