Ok, Here's my second attempt at an I-Man fanfic. Let me know what you think. :-D
I don't own them. I just love and miss them. Song mentioned and quoted is owned by Linkin Park. I have no rights to it or the characters. I just thought they fit really well together. Please don't sue me. I'm poor.
Darien walked through the door of his studio apartment and slammed the door behind him. 'How dare he!' He thought to himself. He had had a meeting with the Official that afternoon. Mister high and mighty himself had finally gotten around to telling Darien that his brother, Kevin, 'the man responsible for putting that damn gland in my head!', had actually kept a journal during the project. The Official had decided that since these pages weren't directly related to the I-Man Project, He supposed Darien could have them rather then shredding them. 'Well thank you ever so much, ya fat bastard!' Ever since Kevin had been killed, shot down and died in Darien's arms, Darien had realized just how little he truly knew his brother and how badly he wanted to. Of course, now it was too late. Kevin was dead and buried. Twice, actually. And even after the whole RNA incident, He still didn't know Kevin half as well as He wished he did. And this whole time, these past 2 years, the Official has been sitting his fat butt on the one thing Darien could use to know his brother better. "How could he!" He whispered to himself. Actually, this action by the Official didn't surprise him so much as just seriously piss him off.
Putting the issue aside for the time, He took off his coat and settled himself on his couch with a beer to read the few pages that had been bestowed to him. There were only a few from the last of the journals, the one from the time period Darien himself had been part of the experiment. He flipped through the pages for a second and then found the first entry by the dates.
"June 27, 2000
A couple days ago a co-worker called me over to his computer to show me a headline on AOL he thought I might find interesting… Instead, I was humiliated. He's done it again. Darien is back in trouble. Why doesn't this surprise me? But this time it's worse then before. This is his third strike. And, of course, he has to get caught for his third strike in a retirement community doing something stupid and involving an elderly man! No way he's guilty of the molesting part. No way. He's getting shafted. So I had a talk with Charlie. It took every ounce of my begging, pleading, threatening, and manipulating skills to get it done but I convinced him to help Darien out if he agreed to be our volunteer test subject for the project. If Darien agrees, he gets a full pardon. Now I just have to convince him to put aside his damn pride and go along with this. I'm schedule to see him tomorrow. Hopefully he'll agree… Hopefully…"
'Yeah', Darien thought. 'It figures he'd think I was the one with the pride issues…'
He flipped to the next one and skimmed through it. More complaints about his attitude on the drive in and comments on how things were progressing during his pre-surgical procedures. One section caught his attention.
"It truly amazes me how whiney Darien still is! Will he ever grow up? Always with the snippy and snarky remarks! He doesn't have any idea what I've gone through to get his freedom! He's still the selfish bastard he was as a teen. Why did I bother?"
Darien read that line a few times to make sure he had read it correctly. Well, that left no doubt about how his brother felt about him. He started to wonder if he really wanted to read anymore... He decided to see just how bad it got and went onto the next one. 'I must be a glutten for punishment...' He thought.
The third entry was concerning the time he was in a coma for 3 weeks after the gland had been installed. One part of that entry jumped out at him…
" Darien's still comatose. 3 weeks and no change. Please God, please tell me I haven't irreversibly damaged my brother. Please let him wake up. Please…" Kevin was actually worried about him and not his gland? Kevin begging for a miracle to wake him up? Kevin begging? Wow…
The next entry was a week or so later. After a bunch of tech-talk about the gland and its readings and yatayatayata, he went back to writing English again.
" Darien's progress had been outstanding! He's learned to control the gland well enough to achieve partial invisibility and even learned to quicksilver outside objects, something I didn't even think was possible! I couldn't be prouder of him. It's funny. This has been the longest amount of time I've spent with Darien since we were kids. In some ways, he hasn't changed at all. In others, he's a completely different person. He's gotten closer to becoming what I believe is his true self. I only hope that I can help him get all the way there. It surprised me at first but I must admit, I've missed having my brother around. Attitude and all, he's still my brother…"
Kevin had missed him… That struck something deep inside Darien. Kevin had really missed him and had even been proud of him. He always thought Kevin had wanted nothing to do with him, that He couldn't wait to get away from Darien. This new revelation caused Darien's heart to ache. He missed Kevin even more now. He wanted his brother back…
"July 24th, 2000
We had a serious issue show up today… The only way to describe it is a madness… Quicksilver madness is what we're calling it. Seems that the quicksilver acts as a cerebral dis-inhibitor. Much like heroin. Arnaud, the genius he is, came up with a 'counteragent' to block this effect. But Darien will need the shot every 6 days, more if he uses the gland often enough. It also limits how long he can stay invisible. Only 30 minutes and then he needs the counteragent. All of that is bad enough but there is an even worse effect. I can't remove the gland… Darien's body has developed a dependency on the Quicksilver. If I remove it, it'll kill him. I can't believe this is happening… I don't know where I went wrong! I've been trying to figure it out! Hell, the whole team here has been trying! But ultimately, this is on me. I not only made my brother a junkie but I've also now seriously endangered his very life! I tried to explain this all to Darien. Tried to apologize and reassure him that I will figure this out. But he wouldn't hear me. He just got angry. How can I blame him? I did this to get him out of jail not just build him a different kind of jail! Now he's trapped by the gland in his head and the needle he needs. I would be angry too! I must say that I'm seriously beginning to regret ever getting involved with this project. No amount of discovery is worth my brother's life! Nothing is worth his life. I have to fix this. I will fix this! Enough writing. Time to get back to work."
'Guilt... He'd felt guilty. He realized the prison I was now in and he regretted the whole thing... My brother, who's work had always come first in his life, had said my life was worth more then his work...' Darien shivered.
"August 2nd, 2000,
Nothing is working! I have tried everything! Nothing seems to cure the madness! Today it seems it got even worse! Arnaud found Darien in the computer lab and Darien attacked him! He hit him over the head with a fire extinguisher. We had to put him in restraints. He's screaming and carrying on about Arnaud being a traitor and him stealing the Quicksilver files. Arnaud? Never. He's the nicest guy I know! I just don't know what to do! I need to get a couple hours sleep and then I'll go back over the files and tests again. There has got to be a way to fix this! I gave Darien my word I'd get that gland out of his head. I will keep my word. With all the problems it's having I may even destroy it once I get it out! Cross that bridge when I come to it. Not if, when!"
You ever get the feeling that something is terribly wrong? I just have this feeling of dread about this whole situation. I still haven't been able to correct the madness, I still haven't been able to get the gland out of his head. And now, it seems there is something else… just a feeling I have. Darien's making too much sense to still be Quicksilver mad. His eyes are normal too, no redness. He and I talked about his accusations earlier today. He seems so sure… But Arnaud? I just can't see it. Still… I just can't shake this feeling… Even the radio seems to agree… Someone left it on in the lab. A strange station, not typically the kind of thing I listen to but the lyrics caught my attention. The song was called "Leave out all the rest" and it was by a band called "Linkin Park". Something about those lyrics caught me. 'I dreamed I was missing, you were so scared. But no one would listen 'cause no one else cared. After my dreaming I woke with this fear, what am I leaving when I'm done here?' That's an excellent question. What if something happens to me before I can help Darien? What would happen to him with the madness and all? I'm sure Charlie would step in and help but who would get the gland out? Surely they'd find a safe way to do it. No, that's my responsibility! I will save him. I will get it out of him. But… what if… No. I can't think like that anymore. I have to shake this feeling… Nothing bad will happen. This whole project is far to secure. It's just paranoia. Everything will be fine. You'll see. I promise, Brother. I will get that thing out of your head and I will make this up to you…"
Darien put down that last entry from his brother. Tears left wet spots on the sheet. On August 9th, the morning after that entry, Arnaud had struck at 9 am. Everyone was killed, including Kevin. Arnaud's man shot him down in front of Darien. Kevin died in his arms.
The tears came harder now. He walked over to his stereo, put a cd into it and selected a song…
As it played, He thought about Kevin. The child Kevin with his experiments, the time when they were outside and he sprayed Kevin with the hose only to be chased down and wrestled with. Kevin in school excelling in everything. Kevin in college with all his degrees. Kevin coming to see him in prison with that damn piece of paper. Kevin in the training area outside the lab High fiving the invisible him. Kevin arguing with him, defending Arnaud. Kevin bleeding and choking, dying in his arms…
The chorus played:
"So if you're asking me, I want you to know
When my time comes, forget the wrong that I've done. Help me leave behind some reasons to be missed. And don't resent me. When you're feeling empty, keep me in your memory. Leave out all the rest… Leave out all the rest…"