Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Meta Corps: Dream of the Youth (Part 15)

  Chapter 22

             Sarra fell into the rubble again and immediately jumped back into the air. She was dizzy and she had trouble staying aloft; she figured that it was a psychological effect of being in toy land. Her only current comfort was that the bizarre vertigo was fading to manageable levels. She splashed into a puddle and her swearing was cut short by a voice. She took on her human shape and kept herself low.
 “Clive, we had a deal. Get up.”
Sarra’s head floated up to look over a former wall and she saw Clive half reform. His lower body was a puddle. A woman stood over him. Sarra had some lewd thoughts because of the tight catsuit and dark bobbed hair; although being sexy did not seem to be the woman’s intention.
 “Morgan.” Clive said. “I experienced my transformation again in that eye; my one stupid, stupid mistake in life.” His anger grew.
 Morgan lorded over Clive with crossed arms and a scowl. Morgan’s frustration gained an edge of vague interest.
 “Up there, in that vortex?”
 “We were in play land first, and then the four of us reopened my wound.”
 “How could that be?”
 Clive formed a leg from his globular mass and ‘stepped up’ from the vanishing puddle to a normal height. Morgan bit her fingernail and Clive stood there, looking slightly dizzy. His face elongated downward slightly with one eye falling faster than the other one.
 “Clive is the dragon, then…” Sarra said.
 Morgan took a minute to think and then looked at Clive.
 “Never us mind that now, I shall repair the damage and make you normal when we are through, Clive. We shall focus on Anne now. Ascend, Clive, and bring her to me.”
 Clive straightened up and sighed. He looked up at Anne and Levan and flew off.
 “Fly my gooey, fly.” Sarra said. She stood up to shorten her neck and then flew after Clive.
Morgan sighted Sarra and pulled out her wand.
 “Even the noblest of heroes meet their end at the hands of someone in love and out for revenge… in damnatio memoraie, EnWol.”
 Morgan spread her feet, grateful that she had decided to leave the high heels at home, and took aim. Two swaths of blue flames twirled around Morgan and picked up speed as they neared the wand. They blurred at the tip, paused, and then exploded into the air, straight for Sarra.

                               Chapter 23

             With as much precision as he could muster, Garner heaved himself upward against his globular protection from the pit of the shallow valley of concrete and steel. He had found that Morgan’s meta shield was like no other in the sense that nothing could get in or out, with the exception of air. He was, in a sense, numb to the world as a scientist preserved in another’s experiment. Like a rat.
 Garner put all of his weight on the side of the shield. He was so frustrated that he did not pay attention to what was on the other side of the gentle incline propped up by fallen structure on a fence.
 Florence, Tench, and Lora’s attention jerked to Morgan’s fiery attack and they took action. The trio flew off, Florence telling Tench to go after Anne, and Lora to find out where those shots were coming from. Clark took notice of a green bubble coming up over a wall. He wished his partners luck and stepped up to the bubble. He cocked his eyebrow when he noticed who was inside the green light.
 “Dr. Garner, I presume?”
 Their eyes met and Garner yelped. He fell backward and rolled all the way down to the small valley where he had gotten himself stuck in the first place. Clark flew up and stretched out to grab the bubble. He wrapped his fingers around it, noting its odd solidity, and picked it up to meet Garner at eye level. He was quivering, like a rat.
 “Bill Garner, what’s someone like you doing here with a force-field when Anne Redford, your responsibility I might add, is up there terrorizing the city with amplified power? Looks mighty suspicious to me.”
 Garner‘s stomach dropped and he nearly threw up. He figured that if he looked like a rat, felt like a rat and acted like a rat, he might as well be one. Garner pointed at where the shots were coming from and started to hyperventilate.
 “M-Morgan! Morgan le Fay talked me into this! I wanted her opinion on Anne, but she went crazy and she took the Psychic Anne’s powers and… and…” Garner’s eyes rolled up in his head again and he passed out. The shield popped and Garner fell into the original Crimson Cherries fingers.
 Clark racked his brain to find out whether he had ever met a villain named Morgan le Fay. He looked toward the oblique flashes and rubbed his chin.

                               Chapter 24

             Sarra charged her ice, leaving a vacuum of low humidity behind her. She was gaining headway on Clive. She ignored the bursts of blue that shot both past and through her, and focused only on Clive and his death wish. His knuckle cracking, face smashing death wish.
 Tench darted up to Anne from another angle, stopped for a moment and flew off with her in tow. No matter. Sarra drew in any available moisture, stretched her arms to her ankles, and listened to the ice crystals form with a smile. She got within a few feet of Clive, pulled her arms taut, and then she was tackled by another EnWol. Sarra released her icy build up in a random direction and howled with rage as the other EnWol, Florence, worked to separate herself from the single, newly fused mass.
 “Are you out of your liquid mind?” Sarra yelled. She didn’t pay attention to Florence drawing her own body from Sarra’s and instead watched Clive chase after Tench.
 Sarra pointed at Clive and looked at Florence; the fused mass separated.
 “I almost had the jerk, why in Gaia’s name did you intercept my—”
“What in the world were you planning on doing by chasing after Clive when there were fireballs hurtling not just at the two of you, but at two more innocent people? Saving the day does not mean hurting oncoming innocents.” Florence said. Her gaze pierced Sarra.
 Sarra slapped her chest.
 “Anne was out of the way, and I could have stopped Clive!”
 “And we protect the people before everything. Winning the war sometimes means losing small victories. Administer common sense next time instead of listening to your own pride.”
 Sarra glared at Florence.
 “You don’t know what he did to me.”
 Florence jabbed at her own chest.
 “I have a body count of over five hundred because of my own mistakes, and only an eighth of that was a part of the Third Riche. I’m still paying off the insurance for those deaths and I don’t want to see a reckless EnWol, Crimzon with a Z, have a track record that’s as bad as mine, or worse.”
 Sarra curled her lip and crossed her arms.
 “Isn’t this conversation pointless when there are villains flying around with us in the middle?”
 Florence jabbed Sarra’s chest; she didn’t respond beyond letting her body jiggle.
 “Don’t be cocky. Remember that a small battle has to be lost to win the war. We have back up to help. Now come on, you go after Clive and use some good old-fashioned common sense. I’ll try and calm Levan down.”
 Florence flew upward and left Sarra feeling like she should be pleased that she was able to keep pursuing Clive, but she instead felt bitter about being ordered around. She saw Clive come up behind Tench.
 Sarra sighed.
 “Okay…” She flew off to do what she was told.

                               Chapter 25

             “Okay, Anne, how’s that for an idea?” Tench shouted. Anne giggled.
 “That’s cool! I wish I had thought of that! Here!”
 Anne projected a cupcake for Tench, which he knew that he could not interact with, and playfully bit at it. He saw the imagined treat vanish and heard Anne gasp. Tench turned around to see Clive smack him upside the head. Tench lulled for a moment, trying to clear the stars from his eyes, the sick from his stomach and the pain from his head as Clive made off with Anne.
 Down below, Lora hovered over the ruined buildings at the water’s edge. Her bloodied and crusted shoulder was starting to come out of shock and realize that it had a wound. It felt less like a blackened welt and more like uncooked filet mignon. A dagger of pain struck her arm, and she almost buckled over. Lora looked up with a pained gasp and saw Clive disappear behind a tanker ship with Sarra closing in from behind. Lora held her arm and sniffed hard. She figured that she was alone, and bobbed over to meet with Sarra. She landed in the debris, rubbing her arm and hissing. The area was disserted; the only sounds that she could hear were coming from the sea, and the cloud that Levan had overtaken.
 “I hope this isn’t infected… or broken, eww…” She looked at her pink hand darkened by the blood. Lora figured that it was better to swallow the pain and try to win rather than waste time by wishing for the second time that Bronson had applied the coding properly. She wasn’t sure how well she would be able to fight with an arm that she couldn’t raise higher than her belly button.
Lora hovered across the plot, checking behind pieces of wall, chunks of rubble, and other assorted mismatches that had fallen from the vortex. As she started to call for Sarra, she heard a scream. She flew over to peek behind a mound of rubble and saw Clive carrying Anne into a cave. Lora studied the cave. She was puzzled by its building materials; bits of rubble, rebar, cars, oil drums, and the like were held together by what looked like spider webs of melted solder. Lora didn’t worry about the construction and headed for the aperture, her mind focused on the little girl.
 Lora flew in and yellow, blue, and red sprites materialized and danced before her. They made her instantly lightheaded.
Lora fell to the ground.

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