Summary: When singer Tina Correr comes to town, Joe begins to feel the repercussions first introduced in "A Look in the Mirror." Story 2 in this virtual continuation of the Viper 1994 season.

Author's Notes: This and its prequel "A Look In The Mirror" all take place in the 1994 season and disregard the continuation of the series. For those new to the series, the end of "A Look In The Mirror" has a summary. Let me know if I've lost you. You may e-mail me with any questions you may have. Viper belongs to Pet Fly productions (the car to Dodge). All the original characters belong to their creators at Pet Fly. Any other characters belong to me (Aiko Chan, "A Look in The Mirror," Tina Correr, "Amends.") The songs "Sacrifice" and "Ao Nuevo" belong to me. Do not use them or my characters without permission, please. The lyrics for "Where or When" can be found at .net/~/Where_or_When

The day after tomorrow...
A time when criminals rule the city.
The only weapon that can stop them needs a driver.
"A man without a memory can be supplied with one...
"After a little cosmetic fine-tuning he'll be our driver."
"Let's initiate change over."
"Three... two... one... activate."
The most wanted man on wheels is about to change sides.
Now, against a corrupt system, a lone fight for justice...
Viper is taking back the streets.

Evil Overlady

- Prologue -

I never knew of the man you were before.
I only know who you are now...

Joe Astor wove through the crowd towards the beautiful voice of the blonde Tina Correr, singing what Frankie said was titled "Sacrifice."

...A friend in need and a friend I can be sure
Will fight injustice anyhow.

"Great, isn't it?!" Frankie shouted over the crowd.

"I know this song," Joe replied, lifting a finger as if to physically work the memory from his mind.

"What?" Frankie yelled.

"I said I know this song! I think I heard it from my past!"

"Told you you wouldn't regret this," Frankie commented, clearly not hearing or simply not registering what he was saying.

Joe Astor's memories of once being criminal Michael Payton were artificially blocked by a device in his head. To remember something Joe didn't remember was something to be concerned about, but evidently he wasn't getting that through to Frankie.

Would you lose it to the black
Just to have me back?

Or maybe Joe just wanted to believe Michael Payton had once heard the song. Recovering from momentarily flipping to Michael Payton a few weeks ago, the latter thought was also feasible.

Your path's ahead. All you need to do is follow.
But I alone must stay behind.
Perhaps, again, we could meet before the morrow,
But if we don't, please, keep in mind...

We can't reclaim the life we lost so long ago,
And all that matters are the people we now know.
Would you then sacrifice your new life for your old?
Would you lose it to the black...?

A flash of red caught Joe's eyes and a tiny red dot glided up the woman's white costume to rest on her head.

Laser sighting!

The ex-thief was fast, plowing over fans to climb onto the stage.

The world's the darkest I've seen out there,
But I rest assured our love won't despair!

He bolted past a security guard and rushed towards the singer.

We can't reclaim the life we lost so long ago,
And all that matters-

Joe knocked her to the ground.

The shot exploded above them.

Someone screamed in the crowd below and people pushed against one another to find safety.

"Up there!" a security guard cried. "East catwalk!"

"I thought we had that section secured!" another added.

Miss Correr was muttering beneath him. "Damn sons-of-bitches. What the hell am I paying 'em for?" She turned to Joe. "Thanks, pal. I owe you one."

"Just trying to help."

She looked up at him with bright green eyes, familiar eyes.

"Brock, could you get me a towel?"

She was younger, barely in her twenties, long blonde hair dripping warm water, a frilly white shower curtain strategically placed over her slender naked body.

Joe could feel the dark bag at his side, bulging with jewelry, and he froze.

Green eyes widened. "Brock!! Get in here!!"

Somehow his legs moved beneath him and he scrambled for the bedroom window. She saw me. She saw me!

"Hey!" the now older woman gripped his arm and shook him. "You okay, pal? You look like you've just seen a ghost."

He looked at her, but his answer was silent. He had... and his name was Michael Payton.