"How many tries would that be now, dear brother?"
"The 104th, I believe."
"Hmm. One-hundred-and-four Booker DeWitts, all fail in some manner."
"No matter what we do, something always happens that seems to offset his attempts. A bad choice, some other factor we didn't take into account…"
"They don't call these dependent variables for nothing. Well, what else shall we try?"
"...perhaps a partner?"
"A partner? Don't be daft, we tried that already: Jack Slate, remember?"
"Not necessarily. Jack Slate learned events as they were going on. We need someone who is not us that knows everything that needs to happen."
"You mean this fine-looking fellow?"
"...who is that?"
"This? This is Dante Price. He's part-human, part Time-Lord."
"Are you suggesting we go to a universe where the television series Doctor Who is real and request the help of a part-human, part-alien?"
"Oh, he's not from that universe. He's from a universe where Doctor Who is a TV series, only he's found a way of jumping dimensions in his TARDIS."
"...well, that sounds a bit unrealistic?"
"Well, I suppose it helps that in another universe he's just a fanfiction character."
"What help could he possibly provide?"
"Well, in his home dimension, we're just a video game."
"Ah yes! BioShock Infinite! Such a lovely game, though it has a bit of a complicated storyline, wouldn't you agree?"
"Think about it, brother. He's played the game before: he knows what's supposed to happen. And logic dictates he would be more than happy to take part in the events as they unfold."
"What if he tries to be a smart-alec and tells Booker outright what's supposed to happen?"
"If he's part time lord, he knows all about fixed points in time and paradoxes. Despite his age, I doubt he would pull a stunt like that."
"Well, it shouldn't be too hard to get a lock on his TARDIS's signal. After all, 'time vortex' is just another word for 'Lutece Field'."
"Exactly. Chop-chop, brother, we've much to do. And if he fails, remember: there's always next time."
"Of course. And if he succeeds, this would make a very good AU fanfiction."
"And~ done!" Dante exclaimed as he twisted one last knob onto the TARDIS console. "Finally, managed to fix that return to sender setting. Now with a twist of a dial, I'll be able to summon the old girl."
Having had problems in the past with losing the TARDIS due to either the HANDS operating system or someone outright stealing it, Dante decided to repair the "return to sender" setting. It basically sends the TARDIS into the Time Vortex for safe keeping and when given the right combination via Ultramatrix, arrived at the hybrid's exact location. With a nod of satisfaction, Dante closed his tool bag and opened a compartment in the bottom of the control console and tossed the bag inside. Shutting the hatch, he dusted his hands off and was about to set coordinates in when...
BONG! BONG! BONG!
"What? The cloister bell? But I don't see any-"
He was cut off as the TARDIS suddenly jerked to one side and the other. Getting his footing after a couple of jerks, he latched himself onto the console and started flipping switches and pulling levers. The cloister bell only sounded when their was an imminent disaster. But when he looked at the screen, it showed that the ship was going off it's original course.
After a few moments of shaking, it ceased. The teen let go of the console board and drifted over to where the radar and the data screen were. They showed nothing. Both looked as if they were turned off.
For now Dante had two options: 1) he could remain trapped doing nothing in his TARDIS for all eternity until his sanity wasted away and he became a madman in a blue box (ha ha). Or 2) he could try to fix the problem. Ultimately, he chose Option 2.
Option 2 mainly involved screaming "what the hell is wrong with you," punctuating each word by slamming his fist into the console.
"WHAT. THE. HELL. IS. WRONG. WITH. YOU?!"
Frustrated, he flicked random switched and pressed buttons until finally he gave up. He facepalmed in frustration and ran his hands through his hair.
"Just when I install something new, you decide to act all moody."
Dante looked up from the console to the door.
"Who could that be?"
Naturally, no one responded. With a slight shrug, he made his way to the door and swung it open.
Blue skies, white clouds, anachronistic pop songs rewritten to sound like they were written in the year 1912.
Dante shut the door. "Huh." After a moment, he opened it again.
Blue skies, white cl-
He shut it again. "Well, that's-okay." Pause. "No, I-right, I need to think."
He made his way over to the console. He'd punched it, he'd fiddled with it...but he hadn't kicked it yet.
Amazingly, kicking it worked.
"Right...return to sender." He punched in a few buttons, and the familiar WHIIIRRRR WHIIIRRRR sounded off. Hearing this, he ran over to the door and looked out. To his relief, the TARDIS was once again floating in the time vortex.
"Strange," he muttered, closing the door. "Who was knocking?"
"Us," came the reply, directly behind him.
Dante paused for a moment. "If you're the beast from Krop Tor reincarnated, I will kindly refrain from turning around."
"Well perhaps we shall try a different approach. Would you kindly turn around?"
The teen bit his lip. "Yeah, I'll take that," he said after a moment. So he turned around.
Standing there, clad in what he guessed was late 19th/early 20th century clothing, were a man and a woman, both with red hair, who were looking at him with a mix of amusement and disapproval. They looked very familiar.
"How'd you get in here?" Dante asked, scratching his head.
"We drove here in a Volkswagen," the man replied dryly. "How do you think?"
"Easy there, brother," the woman warned. "He needs to be sure he can trust us."
"Wait a minute…" He stepped forward to get a closer look at the two. "Where have I seen you two before?"
"Why do you ask where-"
"-when the delicious question is when?"
"...tell me I'm dreaming."
"Well, I suppose then we'd have to lie."
"Nononono…" Dante had to look down for a moment. "I'm…."
"You seem shocked," Rosalind commented. "Anyone would think this is the first time you've seen a video game character."
"And we've read your gospels, so we know it isn't." Robert added.
The teen looked up. "My gospels? They write gospels about me?"
"Some universes, yes," Robert nodded. "They also write stories about your mentor."
The teen finally managed to clear his head. "No surprise there. Alright...cleared head, I guess I'm fine." He really wasn't. "Just, a little surprised to see you two."
"Surprised? Or starstruck?"
"I thought so."
"Alright, so I guess we've established that you two are standing right in front of me." He nervously tapped his foot against the floor. "Well, since that's settled-why are you here?"
The Lutece Twins looked at each other. "We understand you are familiar with the exploits of a man named Booker DeWitt?"
"If I wasn't, I wouldn't know who you two were/are. The whole "bring us the girl, wipe away the debt" crap you pulled on him."
"Precisely. Although that's not exactly the adjective we'd use."
"Yeah, well, no matter. What's that got to do with me?"
Robert reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out a white card. "We think he might need a little...help."
The teen took the card and read it over. He looked up. "Is this for real?"
"I think with what you deal with, suspension of disbelief is key."
"Look…" Dante pocketed the card. "I appreciate this, in fact I'd love to help you out. But you two were key members of creating Columbia…you know how they'd react if they saw me."
"Of course." Rosalind reached into her own jacket pocket and pulled out a strange looking object, attached to some black string. "Which is why you'll be using this."
"And what is that?"
"It's a perception filter." Rosalind handed it to Dante. "Designed specifically to make you appear caucasian, even if someone is focusing on you directly. Though to a certain few individuals, you'll look how you are now."
The teen fiddled with the object. "Well, it's better than heavy makeup," he shrugged. "So, this is it? Me helping out Booker, that business?"
"Works for me." The time lord hybrid walked over to the console and punched a few buttons. The TARDIS responded in kind. WHIIIRRRR WHIIIRRRR.
He looked at the Lutece Twins. "But once this is over, I need this back, alright? I don't want this getting captured by one of the warring Columbia factions."
"We will return it to you when the time comes."
"Good. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to dress for the occasion." He swung himself over the railing and down to the lower floors.
A few moments later, he emerged clad wearing a dark red button up shirt with a multi colored ribbon tied around the collar, a black vest, a black crombie coat, black and red pinstripe pants, a TARDIS blue belt with a golden buckle, black socks and grey Converse sneakers.
"Quirky," Robert observed.
"I try. Say, do you two know how to fly this thing?"
As if on cue, something came flying down from a shelf on the upper level, landing directly at Rosalind Lutece's feet. The title was, appropriately, Flying a TARDIS for Dummies.
"We'll learn," Robert shrugged. "Oh, I almost forgot: you'll need this." He handed Dante a shiny, new paddywhacker/hand cannon, complete with a shoulder holster. Plus a small box with about thirty rounds of ammunition.
The teen examined it. "You know, I don't really need a gun to protect myself."
"Really? I thought you were familiar with the people of Columbia."
"Point taken." He slipped the holster on, slid the gun into it and put the spare ammo in his coat pocket, before heading over to the door.
"Good luck," Rosalind piped. "I think you'll need it."
"That's encouraging." He swung open the door.
Blue skies, white cl-
"One more thing," he said, looking at the Lutece Twins. "Why me?"
"Why do you ask 'why'-"
"-when the delicious question is-"
"You know what...I don't need to know." And with that, remembering to throw on his perception filter in the process, he shut the door behind him.
The Lutece Twins stood alone in the TARDIS in silence.
"Do you really think this will work?"
"I'm afraid that's up to him now."
The human/time lord hybrid took a moment to breathe in the Columbian air.
All things considered, Columbia was a beautiful city. If only the white supremacy weren't a prevalent factor.
"Morning," a policeman greeted as he walked by Dante. "Off to the fair?"
"I suppose I am."
"I think you'll really enjoy it." He politely tipped his cap. "Have a nice day."
Dante watched as the policeman went off to a hot dog stand. "Well," he muttered. "That's the nicest thing a policeman has ever said to me."
He looked at the card. Etched out in black words were the clear instructions: "Bring him to the girl and wipe away the debt. -R. Lutece."
"What have I gotten myself into?" he asked to no one in particular. "Right...if the timing's correct, he should be in Columbia right now. I just need to-"
"'S'cuse me," a gruff man muttered as he walked right by Dante.
The teen stared in the man's direction. "My work is cut out for me," he shrugged as he started to follow the False Shepherd of Columbia.
A/N from RoninS636: Uh...hi. So yeah~, I've been gone for quite awhile now. And all my other stories(bar Origins and Teasers) haven't been updated. Reason being is...well real life happened. Not going to go into detail, but let's say that I barely have the time or motivation to continue writing. That and my usual co-writer, Jason, has been busy as well. That and he has no interest in the Bioshock games. Thankfully I found someone who was interested enough to help continue this project. I'd like to thank misterbubblesishere for helping me with this story, as I've helped them by Beta Reading their own story. This story is something I've had on the back burner for awhile. I've been able to get at least four chapters of it done, including this one with the help of misterbubblesishere. Now for the readers who've been following me for the long run, I got some good news and some bad news. Bad news is that the Bleach and Rosario + Vampire stories have been discontinued and are no longer "canon" to my stories. Familiar Incident is still on indefinite hiatus and Winter Sekirei I've decided to drop all together, unless someone wants to adopt it. Good news is that the rewrite of Sekirei will be coming, I guarantee that. Teasers will still be popping up, and I'll possibly still be posting stories, like this one, that have been on the back burner for awhile. Until next time, this is RoninS636 singing out.