Before Stryker found us in Mexico, my brother and I had been living for a long time. We had fought in almost every war in American History since 1914, from WWI to Cambodia, and every one we fought in, we always came out on top. We were invincible with our indestructable metal skin and bones and our never-ending life. We could survive anything. Machine guns tickled. Bombs felt like a warm patch you'd put on a sore spot on your back. I hid my gender for generations. Every man I ever came across in the military thought I was a man.
Early on, it was easy to let Abram to do the talking, because back then, a mute solider wasn't as uncommon. After WWII, however, we had to start switching up the story. Mainly because sons of the men we fought with would recognize us from photographs or names or stories of the brothers who never die. Abram and I went through numerous stories, ranging from me losing my hearing during a combat practice gone wrong to me being so scarred from our 'rough' childhood that I never spoke.
We were twins, born on November 16th, 1901. We were seventeen when we fought our first war together. We barley looked twenty-two when we finished our last. Abram looked older than me in a manly way, but that was expected. I'd managed to keep my gender hidden for years. The guys just figured that I was a girly-looking guy. But they never doubted my strength on the battle feild, or Abram's.
Abram and I found out we were mutants when we were young. Growing up with a call-girl for a mother was difficult. It meant a lot of teasing and a lot of fist fights. When we were six, Abram broke a boys arm just by punching it. When we were seven, I tried to punch a girl but missed and hit the wall instead when she ducked. It didn't hurt, and the wall cracked. When we were nine, we got into a fight over who got the last strawberry from the market. We tumbled for it, right there in the street. In the end, Abram had a bruise on his left cheekbone, my pinky was broken, and we had managed to knock over several buildings. The rubble littered that address in Brooklyn for months, and we swore never to fight against each other again. At least, not physically.
We grew strong together, we fought together. We depended on each other. After Cambodia, we were haunted night after night by the realism of the horror of wars. The government labelled us nuts and sent us to a special hospital in Mexico. We weren't crazy, we both knew that. We were just over-used in war. But the US government didn't feel the same way we did, and locked us up. When they found out I was a woman, they were even more upset than before. The Mexican hospital turned out to be a secret US prison camp.
We lived in a damp, dark cell for years before William Stryker found us.
Thaty day felt no different from any other day. Abram was carving stick figures into the wall. He liked depicting scenes of violent murders. I was replaying war memories, specifically Normandy, staring at the light reflecting off the damp Northern wall of our four-by-four-by-ten cage The only reason we stayed in was because it had our one weakness. We could survive explosions and bullets and knives and hits.
But we could not survive electrocution. Sick bastards.
The door bolted opened, and light creaked in. It burned our eyes.
"Hello, gentlemen," he said, then looking at me and then my record, "Pardon me, Ms. Cainson."
"Don't speak," Abram ordered. He didn't like me talking to authority. I glared at him, but shut up. "What the hell do you want?" Abram demanded, looking at the man in our doorway suspiciously. The man grinned at us.
"Prickly bastard, aren't you?" he said. My glare turned to him. I could have killed this weakling in seconds. He was middle-aged, probably okay with a gun (like that was going to do anything to me), and dressed like the top guys from DC; dress shirt, tie, dress pants, coat. He must have been boiling, but the only sign was the sweat going down his neck. My glare hardened.
"Don't talk to my brother like that," I ordered, murder a clear intent in my eyes. No one hurt Abram. Especially not some asshole from Washington. His grin grew.
"Protective," he muttered, looking dazed for a moment before he came back to look at us with the eyes of a general. "My name is Colonel William Stryker. I've heard a lot about you two."
"It seems everyone has. What the hell do you want?" Abram said, repeating his question. I looked from my brother to Stryker, who had a smirk on his face as he looked us in the eyes.
"How would you two like to really serve your country?"
And that, essentally, is how I ended up in Stryker's 'special' team. We work 'special' operations, too. It's full of 'special' mutants, just like Abram and I.
Special meaning physcho. The second I walk into the room, I realize three very bad things about my situation.
1. I'm the only girl.
2. The guys are staring at me like I'm all you can eat buffet.
3. I'm stuck with these idiots until Stryker tells me otherwise because he saved me from eternity in a top secret prison camp in the middle of the Mexican rainforest.
Damn, I'm screwed.
"Well, Katelyn," Stryker says, looking at me expectantly. I think he wants me to introduce myself. I glare at him defiantly.
"You failed to mention that I would be the only woman in the team, sir," I bite out, my anger flaring. The guys hoot.
"You scored one for us, boss! High five!" a handsome man with two swords strapped to his back cheers. Stryker glares at him. He smiles at me. I glare, using the glare I earned from years. It's better than Stryker's by a long shot. The man laughs nervously and slowly backs away.
"I figured it would not be a problem, considering your previous situations, Katelyn," Strkyer smoothly explains. I glare at a place behind his head but nod.
"You fail to understand that the men I previously fought with never knew I was a woman."
"How they hell did they not notice?" some guy mutters. I decide it's a compliment, to an extent. I don't glare.
"We will not discuss this further, Kateyln."
"Fine, sir," I give in, but only because Abram's eyes are begging me to back off before I get myself in trouble. All the men in the room stare at me. I look back. "What, you idiots retarded or something?"
"You're hot," the man with the swords says. I roll my eyes, grabbing my bag from the floor and throwing it over my shoulder.
"Idiots," I mutter, shaking my head. I need a shower, a good meal, and sleep. Endless sleep. Before I make it to the doorway, a black man appears out of thin air, literally. "What the hell-?!"
"Hi, John Wraith," he says, sticking out his hand. I look at it curiously before shaking it.
"Katelyn Cainson," I say. "Really deteremined to introduce yourself, aren't you Wraith?"
"I'd like to apologize in advance for anything any other man here says," he explains. I nod, smiling.
"Simple enough," I say. "Does that hurt?" I ask out of curiousity. He raises an eyebrow so I explain myself. "The teleporation."
"Stings a bit," he admits, shrugging apathetically. "How about I introduce you to the rest of the team?"
"That would be good," I say, looking at my brother. "Abram, come on. You can be you later. Just know their names."
"Fine," Abram says reluctantly. Stryker watches us. When he catches me looking, he quickly exits the room. "So who the fuck are you?"
"John Wraith," John says, looking at my brother and then to me, then speaking to me only. "You've been through a lot, haven't y'all."
"I remember them. They've probably lived almost as long as us," a man says gruffly, smiling and revealing saber-like teeth. Abram smirks at him. I smile.
"Victor. It's been a long time," Abram says, shaking his hand in a way that shows they've been through war together. Victor grins at me.
"I gotta admit, Cainson. You played a damn good mute male solider. Fooled me twice, if I believe."
"Both world wars. Girl's got a talent in acting. I knew by the first though," James says, smiling as he comes into the room in only a towel. He has the same hair and build as he did when I saw him last years ago. Brown hair, hazel eyes, beard that frames his face. "Caught her getting dressed once," he explains to a confused Abram and Victor. Abram glares.
"You saw my sister naked?!"
"Not on purpose, Abram, relax. I socked him into next week after I found out some one was watching," I reassure, then look at James. "Of course, it didn't do much thanks to your healing abilities."
"Still hurt worse than a cannon ball," James mutters, rubbing his ripped abs at the memory. I smile, looking down. James grins. "Take a compliment once and awhile, Kate. Now that I can give them to you in public."
"Stop hitting on my sister," Abram orders. James and I roll our eyes. Victor laughs.
"Still protective as ever, Abram," he shakes his head. Abram nods.
"You bet your life I am," he looks at Victor's extended hand, which is pointed in my general direction. "Touch her, Victor, and I'll rip your balls off. Grow those back."
"Aren't we just a ray of sunshine?" the man with two swords says, swaggering over to our solider-love fest. "Name's Wade Wilson," he says, taking my hand before I have time to take it back. He kisses it, then smirks cockily. Abram growls.
"Get away from my sister."
"I don't think she wants me to," he says, winking. James steps in.
"Wade, I swear to God if you don't shut up-"
"Whatcha gonna do, kitty-cat? Claw me?" Wade asks like a smart ass. I sigh.
"I'm going to take a shower," I mutter, walking towards the hallway.
"Need a partner?!" Wade offers. I shake my head, smiling because I can't help it, and walk into my room. While I take my shower, I can hear Wade ramble as James and Abram beat the living shit out of him.