Mission: protect and take [classified] to safe zone base delta
Current progress: ………..
‘Dashing’ Bruce and four other soldiers were suffering heavy losses as the ‘thing’ that ambushed them was lurking in the dark cover of the jungle, hunting them down one by one selectively. He couldn’t say for sure what it was or where it came from. All he knew was that he needed to get the fuck out of here and get to delta base immediately.
He was covered in mud and blood from the fighting from both the Jungle infiltrators of Seye mercenaries, and the newest arrival of unknown origin. Bruce looked like he was caked from a burial hole that he just crawled out from. ‘Shit, don’t think of stuff like that’ he thought to himself as he scrambled through the bushes in the deep dark jungle.
His daughter will be 17 in two weeks time, he promised her he’ll be back in time to see her soon once this was over. But he’s sure now that’ll never happen. She doesn’t even know that her father was enlisted back into the military, for all she was told he was off to a business venture.
As he scrambled he noticed a tug at his left shoe as he was slowly getting no more traction. He thought a Seye had shot him his leg at first until he realised there wasn’t any pain flaring up. As he tried to stand up his leg was getting dragged back! Clawing at the ground frantically like a freighted rabbit, Bruce prayed it wasn’t the ‘thing’ as he tried to escape. Then he noticed a puddle appearing between his fingers, and soon covered his entire lower body. ‘No…..no……
‘No, for god sake no…….don’t do this to me!’ Bruce’s last thoughts as he screamed when the flood pinned him to the ground. It was only then that she came through the underworld of the flood to kill Bruce………his own daughter came to kill him……….
With a thundering impact that shook the earth like an earthquake, Waz and Krakstrong charged at each other like charging rhinos. The battle of nature vs machine was reaching its climax as both forces vied each other to see who will win. Both equally strong, and either could be killed.
Krakstrong grunted with enormous effort to keep his position with his fists interlocked with Waz’s in a push of might. His muscles tightened by pressure. “Who were you talking to! Answer me weakling or I’ll tear your head off!!!” Said krakstrong as he focused all of his might into overpowering Waz.
Waz, an unemotional vessel of Frankenstein horror gritted his teeth as he pushed back against Krakstrongs reinforced push. He replied back “A friend of mine, a colleague who I met a few years ago, he has the key to help me achieve my goal” as he said this he began to crush Krakstrong’s hands which made the big ape roar in pain. Blood started to weep between Waz’s hand as he crushed flesh and bone. Where did this sudden strength come from? Was Krakstrong becoming slack from easy competition since the defeat of Jackson Creek? Was his pride so high that his nemesis, Gornicus, could see his weaknesses and is waiting for his time to strike back after years of silence?
The ape roared as he was powerless to stop his fate, Waz kept crushing his opponent until he literally ripped all four arms off the beast. Blood gushed out of the arm stumps like fountains of red wine, making krakstrong weep in pain as he dropped to his knees. “Now, Keith, will you listen to me?” Said Waz with no smirk or righteousness in his tone, this wasn’t a personal victory for him as he had other concerns on his mind.
“Nevvveeerrrr!!!!!!” Roared Krakstrong as he tried to stand up slowly with all his strength. The effort was hurting him as he moved his muscles. “My world will be turned to ashes if I let you live and enact your abominable act of slaughter. The greater nature told me this in my mind, that you will kill us all. I cannot let you win!”
“Those voices are false impressions made by the Dark Mind, it needed you to kill me so that I couldn’t achieve my goal of saving mankind. Even you, Keith should know that the voices are lies, other mutants know this to be true” Said Waz as retuned to normal size and went to claim his dark cloak. His hybrid form squelched and churned as flesh, metal and other substances reformed back into barely a humanoid form. If he felt intense pain from his metamorphosis, it didn’t show on his face as he swung his cloak back on.
“The voices aren’t theirs, it isn’t the Dark Mind. It is the voice of nature that despises the corruption of the Dark Mind and all it taints. Their temptations and promises are for the weak like Gornicus. What he hears and prostates himself to are words that echoes of the future, that whisper only the crackle of broken bones and long lost civilisation. The Dark Mind was never meant to be here on earth, and for this we pay the price by bloodshed and genocide by the billions until the world is flooded once again”.
Waz couldn’t be sure if Krakstrong was telling the truth for the brute had become more savage by the years without intellectual thought. Yet at this moment Krakstrong could talk more than he used to, intellect hidden by years of brutish dominance and simplistic ways. Was Keith still there? hidden behind the beasts alter ego acting as the voice of reason? Maybe so, for why didn’t he kill Luke and Glenn when he had the chance? Luke may have been right, Keith was still there after all .
“Keith listen to me, I’m not your enemy, I’m here to stop whatever the Dark Mind is planning. I have a friend who may have the solution to stopping this Final Apocalypse from happening. You must listen to me”.
Krakstrong laughed in a pathetic painful bursts “So I should trust you even though you’ve teared my arms off?”.
“They’ll regrow, your mutation will heal your wounds after today, I meant only to disarm you and bring you to your senses” Said Waz as he came up to Keith like a robed nomad from the deserts. “At least let me explain my story to convince you that I’m doing what’s right for the world?” Said Waz as he knelt in front of Keith a few paces between them. The big ape sighed and nodded with defeat sunk heavily in his chest as though his throne was toppled by a dominant foe. “Go on then, I’ll see if your being truthful or not once I’ve heard your story”.
“My contact was once a scientist who was part of a military operation that discovered the existence of the Dark Mind. Before the Apocalypse, he was once a soldier in the Australian army, along with several others who were gathered in secret to perform a special task. In 1968 they were given a top secret mission called operation Sun line. The task was to act as body guards to safely take a key informant to an allied military base. On their journey whilst they fended off hired hit men, they were hunted down one by one as a mysterious participant calculated its attacks.
“Later, as the team were nearly at their destination, the Dark Mind, or in official terms, Void Flood stalkers (VFS), killed the informant and tried to kill all of the squad team”.
“Somehow, a solider was able to kill a VFS when so much of the soldiers were slaughtered. Out of twenty highly trained operatives, only three made it out with their lives”.
Waz produces a mini-monitor size of a fist on his left arm and shows it to Krakstrong, the screen formed like shards piercing through skin as the screen formed like it was part of Waz’s skin. The screen glows green and shows a slide show of photos as Waz explained his story. “My contact was a man named Jackson who worked with a scientist code named ‘Dashing’ Bruce. Through the long weeks of bloodshed and tension of operation Sun line, they found an individual Dark Mind and in a attempt to find way to kill that which conventional means had no affect. As the squad was nearly wiped out their leader had accidentally found a way of temporarily weakening the foe”
“This opened a gap for the survivors to kill the thing. After the mission was over the team went its separate ways, some stayed on to research into who or what the Dark Mind is”.
“However, the knowledge of this technology was kept closely secret by the members who knew of the existence of the Dark Mind. Most of the members were killed off years later by ‘accidental’ cases”.
He showed Krakstrong a photo of the team in a group photo involved in operation Sun line, many of the faces were marked to hide the identities of the individuals. But not all were hidden, some were declassified by the military. Reasons for this were never explained. Waz points to a man in the still photo on his screen.
A fairly young man with long hair with big glasses and a short beard, he was in his late thirties by the looks of him. “This is Jackson, he was a scientist and ex military soldier, he was one of the three who survived operation Sun line” Waz said.
Krakstrong looked like he seen a ghost as he’s eyes stared at the picture of the man. He knew him before from his dreams when he was once a child growing up, a repressed memory he had during that terrible night when he was lost. Playing hide and seek with his friends decades ago, he found a hiding spot but accidentally fallen down a deep woodland slope.
It was there that night he met Sammy, the monster that tried to kill him. The man named Jackson was there that night too, as well as a crazy man in a gas mask who both tried to take down Sammy. But wasn’t that just a figment of Keith, Krakstrong’s childhood imagination? Surely it didn’t really happen?
But it did, this photo proved that Jackson was real and Sammy wasn’t a bed time nightmare from his childhood. His heart thudded widely as sweat was dripping down his forehead by his sudden fear of what that picture had unearthed in his mind. “No, it can’t be. It was a dream…….just a dream. No……” whispered krakstrong as his reality turned upside down.
“You knew him?” Said Waz with no emotional care backing his words. How could Krakstrong know about Jackson? Strange. “Tell me what you know Keith”.
Krakstrong told Waz all he knew. Waz made sure Luke and Glenn were okay after the ordeal of that fight that erupted hours ago, Glenn was unconscious but recovering from his injuries. Luke however was ill looking as his breathing was worsened by his fatal hit, but he would recover eventually. Better keep an eye on Luke thought Waz.
After Krakstrong told his story, Waz processed what he heard and came to a realisation. “Judging by what you’ve told me, I can explain what happened based on your story and my investigation into the Dark Mind. You see Sammy, your imaginary friend wasn’t real, he was the persona that the VFS took on. It sensed an emotional connection that you had to Sammy, the friend you needed when you were alone that night. They take on forms that we perceive them to be based on how we feel, or an aspect of their personality that we see them as. For Luke, he saw James, I’m not sure why Luke had a connection with him, but it seems to be his deepest emotional connection”.
“That night when you met Jackson, that was the night he and that scientist were meant to have been assassinated. Sammy was there to take down the two, but thanks to you, they were able to defeat the entity. Although I’d imagine they would’ve had to burn down the off grid base in case it attracted the wrong sort of attention”. Said waz as he sat down near Keith who was under the petrol stations roof, as the sky was dark and getting cold.
“So your saying I helped Jackson survive to carry on finding a way to kill the dark energy?” Said krakstrong, his arms were regrowing over time looking like thin limbs being grown, they made his body proportions look odd like T-Rex with a big body and small arms. He continued “So what is this solution that Jackson created? Where is he now and why didn’t he kill the Dark Mind before the apocalypse?”
“He and a group of researchers were funded by the military to produce a way of taking on the Dark Mind. Bullets and explosives were useless when dealing with beings that can defy logic, once your in the flood nothing can stop them. A Shotgun could knock it out, but only for a few seconds before it regains it’s composure.
The scientists worked out a way of dealing with the Dark Mind. However we won’t know what that is until we meet Jackson”. Waz carried on “As for what happened to Jackson, he worked for the military for a time until the apocalypse came. He was out of the city to see a colleague when the apocalypse consumed Australia. Luckily for him he was out of the exposure zone, and he and the colleague made it to a secret bunker somwhere in the outback. There they lived on a few rationed supplies and equipment they had on hand. They tried to go back to the lab near Melbourne to recover data and the weapon. But then as he got to the lab he was betrayed…..
“By who?” Said krakstrong as he listened closely to Waz. He still hated Waz as the thing he was and would surely take him on again another time. But he would work with Waz in truce to stop the Dark Mind, even if Waz may be a unwilling agent of theirs.
Waz showed Krakstrong a picture of the person in question. It was a skinny old man who looked skeletal in appearance, aged on the wrong side of 70, war had scarred his skin and his obsession with scientific research. Waz spoke slowly as he revealed who the betrayer was “The betrayer was one of the three survivors of operation Sun line, he was once nicknamed ‘Dashing’ for his good looks and egotistical demeanour. However that changed when he was caught in the flood, and only made it alive thanks to the Colonel. But ‘Dashing’ suffered severe mental health issue due to his mind being trapped by the VFS as the Colonel killed the thing”.
“Dashing then became a scientist and went the opposite direction of being ‘Dashing’, he became a hermit who dissected the dead for his research. His past time became his work time, his tastes were unusual and disturbing as he gradually became thin and twisted. All of his obsession caused by his traumatic experience during that fateful day”.
Krakstrong grunted “I don’t care for this backstory of the traitor, who is he!”
Waz spoke more serious and deeper than usual as though the name would usher some kind of bad omen “That traitor was known as Bruce, the Butcher…………”
As his daughter walked towards him, Bruce was entranced by the floods influence. He heard voices in his mind like distant echoes from all around but nowhere at the same time. Cries of pain, pleas for help, condemnation of anger and despite filled his mind like a megaton migraine. He saw things from the dark as flickers of billions of lights marched on in the cold vacuum of space. All passing Earth towards the great unknown, one such spec of light went off course and dropped into earths atmosphere.
Another image came to mind, indescribable creatures of nightmares teared into his flesh. Eternally repeating the process until Bruce couldn’t feel the pain anymore. His daughter appeared, holding what appears to be a beating heart that looked like a hybrid creation. Part flesh, part metal, part nature, part hollow.
Then, she slammed her empty hand into his chest, his screams contorted into thousands of echoes as his daughter plucked his gore red soaked heart out, and replaced it with the hybrid organ. Voices boomed all around him in many languages and tones, like cracked bones and voices of long lost civilisations.
“Welcome Bruce. Your vessel shall be our property. Your identity will be ours to control and change. Your life is now in service to great work. Let the flood flow, into your mind, into your veins and into your soul. The Final Apocalypse is your only ambition, your only passion and your final duty to fulfil. The dead shall guide you………” the voices stopped as all went to darkness. Finally after time uncounted I’m the darkness Bruce awoke to see a face, at first it was blurry and sounded muffled. He soon realised who it was.
“Bruce it’s me, Bruce listen to me, Bruce! For god sake listen Bruce can you hear me! Don’t die on me now. Think of your daughter, Bruce!”
Bruce spoke softly back to the Colonel “Butch…..”. The colonel smiled and wiped the blood off his face as he griped Bruce tightly in his bloody grasp. “Thank god your alive, I thought it had you there! Jackson and I are all that’s left of the team. We managed to kill the thing, we managed to kill it……” his mind drifted off as he remembered the lives lost to the monster that took his men. Fellow soldiers, friends too. He treated them like brothers who he looked after as his own. All dead now, a family lost by senseless violence.
Bruce spoke again more clearly this time as he finally spoke from his readjustment. “Butcher” he said as his mind saw the countless dead piling up in vast cathedral spires. He imagined himself being there walking among the dead in a butchers apron covered in blood, his face now a permanent gas mask contorted into a ghastly monster and his hands welded to two big blades of heavy iron. He saw the dead call out to him as the sky burned and the fires heralding the end of the world flare. But none of the dead were affected, cold and still as a forgotten Crypt from centuries past. He mumbled to himself as he saw so many dead that needed his attention. So many dead……….
End of part 5 and season 1