Disclaimer: The usual: I own nothing you know, that sort of thing.

Feedback: Please do.

A.L.Nowicki: Thanks for your comments again. However, that one technically didn't feature the League going into the future, but I have got that planned for the future. Consult 'The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen 2004' for some information on that front...

Skynet Spreads

In the main control room of the Nautilus, Tom Sawyer stood with his back to the wall and stared out at the vast ocean in front of him. He had been feeling a bit bored lately. Ever since Hartdegen had joined the League there'd been nothing for them to do. Sawyer had almost contemplated going back to the British Government and accepting their offer to become official...

But that was a road he wouldn't go down. If the League became official to the Government, they would basically be solely working for the good of them, and not the world. Besides, Hartdegen and Sawyer's loyalties lay with America and Nemo would always be an Indian. As for Skinner, Jekyll and Mina, well, they needed to be able to roam free in order to help out and to achieve redemption for their past sins, and being at the beck and call of one single Government was not the way to achieve that. As it was, they'd each contacted a certain official in India and America that they could trust with their secret and left two radios with them, the League retaining one while the fourth resided in the possession of Mycroft Holmes. Right now they were just waiting for something interesting to come up.

At the moment, Sawyer was just killing time by checking out the sights. Nemo had mentioned that this section of the ocean had some very interesting fish in it, and he and Jekyll had gone outside to take a look around the sea. Jekyll wouldn't normally have gone along, but he felt like getting out of his lab; he'd been working for ages on a formula that would allow him to turn into Hyde but let him retain his mind for ages now, with minimal success. So far he hadn't had much luck.

The two of them had asked the others along, but they'd declined. Sawyer hadn't felt like tagging along, Hartdegen was occupied making some modifications to the time machine to allow him to make short leaps in space as well, and Skinner had persuaded Mina to see about helping him develop an antidote to his invisibility.

So far their greatest success had been working out a formula that had turned his eyeballs visible, but it had only lasted for about an hour. On the plus side, If Skinner drank it he wouldn't need to use his glasses to look normal. On the other hand, if he got into a fight before the hour was up he wouldn't have as great an advantage. Deciding he might as well do something, Sawyer walked out of the control room and headed for the shooting range. He'd probably need it in the future, and he had plenty of time for it.

Or so he thought...

*****

Far above the Nautilus, on a large steamship bound for America that was suffering from terrible weather conditions, an empty area of the deck suddenly began to crackle with brilliant blue energy. As the energy intensified it formed itself into a massive ball of pure power, which swiftly vanished. The only thing left of the ball was what it must have had inside it; a tall, fit-looking woman with slightly curly hair. Baring that, she was utterly unremarkable save that she was completely naked and didn't even seem to notice the cold wind and the rain that was blowing all around her.

As she looked around herself, the only on-duty crewman noticed her. He was standing just behind her at the ship's wheel, and was looking at her with an expression that was partly lust and partly bafflement. Eventually, his more courteous side won and he called down to the woman.

"Um, excuse me? Miss?" he asked, leaving the wheel and looking down from his seat. The woman looked back up, and grinned slightly at the man.

"I like your clothes," she said simply.

"Oh," the man replied, slightly baffled. Whatever else he'd been expecting, he hadn't been expecting that.

Another thing he probably wasn't expecting was for the woman to leap up to where he was in a single leap, her arm to mutate into something that looked like a weapon, and for the aforementioned weapon to blast him in the chest with a massive burst of energy.

He had also never expected to end his day dead.

*****

Meanwhile, down in the Nautilus, a similar distortion was going on. The energy and the ball were all the same, but when it had cleared away, what was left was not a woman. Rather, it was a tall man, reaching almost six feet, with short brown hair and also looking in good physical shape. However, the fact that he was naked remained the same.

He looked around the Nautilus, and seemed satisfied with his location. Then he began walking through the corridors, acting as though he was fully clothed rather than utterly in the stark.

*****

"Dammit," Tom thought to himself, as his bullet barely grazed his intended target. Since the League had begun spending the majority of their time in the Nautilus underwater, Nemo had been persuaded to make one of the larger rooms in the ship into a shooting range for Sawyer's use (And Hartdegen was contemplating spending some time here as well), so he could continue work without his more usual targets. However, Sawyer was starting to think he was having an off day; His bullets had all hit the targets, but it always seemed to be on the very edge of them.

Maybe I need to try and calm down, Sawyer thought to himself as he levelled his gun again. Then another thought occurred to him; calm down? Why was he worried in the first place?

There was no reason to be afraid. He was in the Nautilus, the most advanced ship of its time, at the very bottom of the sea, in one of the most central rooms in the whole place. Even if something was attacking them, it would take ages to get anywhere near to threatening him, and at least Mina, Skinner and Hartdegen were available to help him fight it. There wasn't a thing to be afraid of.

So why do I have a terrible sense of approaching evil? Sawyer asked himself. Suddenly, he heard a noise from behind him, as though something was walking towards him. Whoever it was didn't want to make a noise, but Sawyer was certain there was something there.

Pretending not to have heard anything, Sawyer raised his rifle and aimed at the target in front of him. Someone (Presumably Skinner) had, sometime after the room's construction, stuck pictures of Moriarty, Dorian, Dracula and the Morlocks on some of the targets, along with various random soldiers from the Fantom's armies. Sawyer didn't mind too much, he always enjoyed actually having a human form to aim at, but he still would have preferred to have been consulted on it.

Mentally, Sawyer counted down from three to one in his head. The second he hit one he spun around, the gun rising to aim at around the average human head- height... And he stared.

The guy standing in front of him was a complete stranger. Not only that, but there was also the fact that he was absolutely naked, yet seemed perfectly well. Of course, Sawyer knew that it wasn't impossible for the human body to go around naked in some conditions- heck, Skinner was living proof of the fact even if he didn't exactly flaunt it to them all- but this man had no reason for it.

"Who are you?" Sawyer asked the man, deciding he might as well get the obvious questions out of the way first.

The man looked at him, and his eyes...

Well, Sawyer didn't know how or why, but for a brief moment, the man's eyes flashed with a bright red light. Then it vanished.

"Thomas Sawyer?" the man asked. Sawyer couldn't quite place his accent; he sounded vaguely American, but there was a slightly stiff undertone to it that he couldn't identify.

"Um, yeah, that's me," Sawyer replied. He probably wasn't in danger; if this man had meant him harm he would have done it by now. "And... you are?"

"It is a long story," the man said, his expression remaining the same. (Come to that, he didn't even appear to be blinking) "Please recall the other members of the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, and I shall tell it to you."

"Right," Sawyer said, as he put the gun slowly down. "Recall. Got that. Oh, and one more thing, Mr...?" He left the sentence hanging in the hope of it being completed, but when the man refused to talk he just continued. "If you're going to be talking to us, can you get some clothes on first?"

The man looked down at himself and nodded.

"I shall find some before the meeting, Thomas Sawyer," he replied simply. Then he turned around and walked out.

Well... that was weird, Sawyer thought to himself, as he walked out of the shooting range and turned towards Mina's lab.

*****

Eventually, the League were all waiting in the main meeting room for their mysterious guest. Once Sawyer had called Hartdegen, Mina and Skinner to the room, Hartdegen had gone outside the Nautilus and had managed to get Nemo and Jekyll back inside, although Nemo wasn't especially thrilled at having to cut short his exploration. Sawyer had decided not to tell him that the only reason he'd recalled everyone was because of a strange man who'd turned up not wearing anything and hadn't even given his name; he didn't want to annoy anyone any more.

Eventually, just as Jekyll had started to fiddle around with his watch, the door opened and the man walked in. He appeared to have been raided Quartermain's old wardrobe; he was wearing one of Quartermain's old off- white shirts, a brown leather waistcoat, brown trousers, and black shoes. The only difference between his clothes and Quartermain's was that he was wearing over it all one of Skinner's long black coats, which appeared just barely big enough for him around the sleeves, and he'd also put on one of Skinner's pince-nez, although they looked a little small and stupid on him.

"Ah, you're here," Sawyer said, looking up at the man as his face took on a worried-yet-reassuring grin while he shook the man's hand. He turned to the rest of the League. "Guys, this is the man who wanted to talk to us."

"Really? Would you mind telling us why he's wearing Allan's old clothes and my jacket?" Skinner asked. "Doesn't he have his own or something?"

The man looked over at Skinner. "To answer your question, Rodney Skinner, I do not. The time machine that transported me back here prevents anything dead from coming back with me, due to the field generated by a living-"

"Wait a minute," Hartdegen said, leaning forward to look at the man. "Did you say 'time machine'? As in, you're from the future?"

"Affirmative, Alexander Hartdegen," the man replied, as he turned around to face him. "However, I am not from the future you know. I am from an alternate future, a theme which I believe you are already acquainted with."

"Yes, we are," Nemo said, speaking for the first time. "But how do you know that, and how do you know all our names?"

"That is involved in my explanation as to the reason for my presence here, Captain Nemo," the man said, turning to the tall, distinguished figure of the commander of the Nautilus. "I must tell it to you now."