CHAPTER VII: DECISIONS, DECISIONS

The next three days were rife with tension. Bi-Han's presence in the base seemed to raise everyone's hackles; his name was at the tip of everyone's tongue, except when she was around of course. Whenever she was within hearing distance, people avoided talking about her brother, going so far as to change the topic whenever she passed by. The Lin Kuei Grandmaster noticed it when Johnny suddenly said something about a mango, a cat and Mokap when she ran into him and Jax in the corridor. Jax's expression of utter befuddlement told Sub-Zero that Johnny's change of topic was less smooth than he imagined it to be.

Sub-Zero tried to appear nonchalant about the entire thing, but in truth, she felt uneasy at the idea of her allies voting on the life of her brother. She could blame no one but herself though; she could have by-passed this 'trial' and instead brought him back to the Lin Kuei stronghold and let him face justice there. But she had decided to wash her hands of this responsibility, unwilling to let herself become Bi-Han's executioner. Although, it did seem that through her inaction, she ended up becoming that very thing. And it was for that very reason that she found herself in front of the door to his room.

Steeling her nerves, she raised a hand to knock, but ended up stopping herself at the last minute. After their brutal exchange of words three days ago, Sub-Zero had never stepped foot inside her brother's room again. She would have never even passed the corridor if Ryu's room wasn't on the same floor. She wondered if her brother would ever speak to her if she attempted. Her pride would never let her apologize, they both knew that. And even if she did, her brother would just throw it back to her face and mock her for her weakness.

The door to Bi-Han's room opened, startling Sub-Zero out of her thoughts. To her surprise, she came face to face with Johnny Cage of all people. The blonde actor stared at her for a moment before giving her a blinding smile that looked at little too bright to have been sincere. He stepped out of the room and closed the door behind him before greeting her.

"Subbie! What's up? What brings you to this area of the neighborhood? I mean, well yes of course it's pretty obvious, but well you never visit anyway, so I just thought-,"

"Johnny," she cut him off. "What are you doing in my brother's room?"

Johnny shifted uncomfortably and rubbed the back of his neck. "What? Can't a man just visit a prisoner once in a while? I mean I get to be an interrogator! And he's my…interrogatee?" He visibly squirmed under the frosty look Sub-Zero was sending him. "Okay, okay! Sheesh! I just thought the man would need some company, okay?" At her raised eyebrow he added, "I just felt kind of bad, y'know? The way we're all treating him? And he doesn't really seem to remember what happened."

"And he actually…spoke with you?"

"Weeeeell, not really," Johnny admitted. "Mostly I would prattle on and he would give me one-word answers. Sometimes even phrases." He beamed at this accomplishment.

Sub-Zero gave him a half-smile. She didn't think Bi-Han would actually even acknowledge Johnny's presence, let alone actually speak to him. "I'm glad you're sympathizing with my brother. I suppose you're the only one who thinks that."

Shaking his head vehemently, Johnny said, "Of course not. A lot of the others don't think it's right to…you know…" he trailed off.

"Kill him?"

"Good God! You make it sound like you're just talking about the weather or something."

Sighing, Sub-Zero started walking away from Bi-Han's room and gestured for the actor to follow her. "I would prefer not to let my emotions get the better of me. I trust my allies will come to the best… decision."

"Well, you don't sound so sure of that," he remarked.

Sub-Zero stopped a few rooms before her apprentice's and turned to face Johnny. "Is it true that you've started a betting pool?"

At this, Johnny flushed, "I—er—"

"I just wish for the truth, Johnny."

He sighed and, still blushing, mumbled, "Yes, yes I did."

"Hmmm," she made a non-committal sound at the back of her throat, not really knowing what to think of her allies making bets about her brother's life. Knowing Bi-Han though, he'd probably be amused. "And how did Bi-Han feel about it?"

Johnny started. "How'd you know I told him?"

"I didn't," she smirked.

"Caught like a bear in a trap," Johnny grumbled. "He actually laughed when I told him. Hadn't seen him that amused in the past few days."

"That is news to me as well." Bi-Han laughing? Surely Netherrealm had already frozen over. "Do you have a tally sheet?"

"You want to see the bets?" he asked, confused.

"No, you idiot. I want to see the list of votes on Bi-Han's verdict."

"Ahhh," Johnny fished for the list inside of his brown leather jacket. His pockets seemed to be filled with useless junk as it took a while before he managed to extricate the piece of paper from his person.

People had been coming in and out of the base in the past three days, usually only coming by for a while and leaving almost at once. Kitana, Jade and Kung Lao passed by just to vote on the matter and inform them of the celebration at Edenia in the next few days. They brought SIndel's vote along with them as well. Taven had dropped by briefly, along with Ashrah who was assisting him with "staving off Armageddon", whatever that actually meant. Nightwolf and Li Mei were with Shujinko, who were both in Earthrealm keeping the old man company. They didn't have time to come over, and so they merely voted through a call. Sareena apparently, couldn't be contacted for reasons unknown, which made Sub-Zero even more suspicious of her than before. The only semi-permanent residents of the base were the Special Forces, and even they left at times.

Sub-Zero grabbed the sheet as Johnny handed it over, and scanned it quickly. She was utterly surprised when she saw the current tally.

YES

Jax

Sonya

Cyrax

Jade

Nightwolf

Ashrah

Kenshi

NO

Johnny

Raiden

Kitana

Kung Lao

Taven

Li Mei

Fujin

ABSTAIN

Sub-Zero

Sindel

Shujinko

Sareena – can't be contacted

"A tie," she whispered. The relief must have shown on her face as Johnny broke out into another smile.

"See? There's still hope, man. The only ones who haven't voted are Ermac, who's arriving in a while, Liu Kang and Scorpy. Ermac and Liu are obviously going to say No, and Scorpy would say yes, leaving your brother free to go."

Sub-Zero's heart soared. The odds were in her brother's favor. She just hoped Ermac would vote no, he was the only one that would vote either of the two. She didn't want to betray her hope, so instead of saying anything else, she simply said, "Scorpion would kill you if he heard you call him 'Scorpy'."

Johnny's grin grew wider. "Oh believe me, he already has. You should've seen him when he logged in, and the computer verified him as 'Scorpy, the lovable flaming skull head'."

Normally, she would only snort at that, but with her spirits so high, Sub-Zero let out a laugh. "I'm surprised to see you still standing."

"Only because I managed to hide behind Raiden," he chuckled at the memory. "Glad I was able to lift your spirits, Subbie. You've been really down these past few days."

"Well, there hasn't been any reason for me to celebrate." Apart from the untimely appearance of her brother, Sub-Zero constantly worried about Ryu. Kenshi had already noted that Ryu's head had been tampered with, but he wasn't able to find the actual source. Her apprentice, however, showed no signs of being possessed and acted fairly normally. This worried Sub-Zero even more. It felt like the calm before the storm.

"I guess. I hope they get this over with quickly. And well, hope Hanzo gets better. I guess I'd better go. I'll leave you to spend some quality time with your apprentice," he wiggled his eyebrows suggestively, and Sub-Zero made a face of disgust.

"That is fairly gross, and disturbing."

Johnny let out a laugh. "Yeah, well, Kenshi told me the whole story of how he used to be so obsessed with you and—"

"Oh by the Elder Gods," she moaned. "Speak of it no more. Things like that are better off buried under the snow."

Johnny chuckled and waved goodbye, leaving Sub-Zero to make her way to her apprentice's room. She knocked on his door, and receiving no answer, slipped inside quietly. The younger Lin Kuei was on his bed sleeping, a book tucked under his arms.

Sub-Zero sat down on the chair beside his bed and leaned forward to ruffle his hair gently. "I wish Kenshi'd finally figure out what's wrong with you." She said softly. "You're definitely behind in training. I'd never hear the end of it from Alexander if we come home and your form got even worse." Remembering Alexander reminded Sub-Zero that the man had prescribed medicines to the boy.

She stalked to the boy's dresser and rummaged around in his pack for the potion bottle. Her hand brushed against something cold and round. Her curiosity got the better of her, and she took it out of the bag and examined it in the light. It was a metal pendant engraved with intricate patterns at the edges and infused with what seemed like a round emerald stone in the middle. It was attached to a thin, metal chain, long enough so that if the boy wore it, it would be hidden under his tunic.

Where did Ryu get it, she wondered. She'd never seen it on his person before, was it a family heirloom, perhaps? She didn't feel anything strange, or any malicious aura from the necklace, but then again, she never was attuned with things like that. She set it on the drawer and took the potion bottle out. As she mused about the bottle and its contents, someone knocked on the door.

"Enter," she said and a tall figure entered the room and approached her.

"Sub-Zero," he greeted her and quickly checked on her apprentice.

"Kenshi," she answered back without glancing at him. When she looked up from the bottle, she was shocked at his state of dress. "What happened—?"

"Oh this?" he gestured to the blindfold he was wearing. "Nothing really. Force of habit."

"Isn't that…inconvenient?"

Kenshi shrugged. "Not really. After years of being blind, I find myself somewhat off balance now that I can see." At her questioning look, he explained further. "My other senses are still as strong as ever, and with my eyesight back, I feel a bit…overwhelmed. It's taking me some time to get used to seeing again. You know how certain people break their bones and they have to go through physical therapy to use it properly again?" She nodded. "Well, it's something like that. I still wear my blindfold from time to time, in the same way the people who broke their bones still need to use their crutches when it gets too much."

"Would you have…preferred not to see again?" she asked, feeling guilty. It was technically her doing.

The swordsman waved her off. "At that time, there was nothing more that I wanted. But I didn't really account for the fact that all my other senses would remain as strong. It's not your fault so don't worry about it."

"All right, if you say so," she said slowly.

Blessedly, Kenshi decided to change the topic. "Your apprentice seems fine. I can't detect anything wrong with him, apart from very, very subtle tampering of his mind. It was a miracle I actually found it."

"I'm surprised he hasn't been possessed while he's here in the base." She scowled. "I find myself more worried than if he were."

Kenshi nodded, his mouth down in a grim line. "It means whoever this person is, he's lying low. Perhaps even setting a trap, waiting to catch us off-guard."

Sub-Zero exhaled deeply and sat down on the dresser table, her hand fiddling with the bottle. "I don't know what to do. My apprentice is being possessed by someone, my brother has suddenly reappeared with selected memories, my clan is being torn up from inside…"

"Not to mention Quan Chi," Kenshi added.

The Lin Kuei Grandmaster crossed her arms and frowned. "That sorcerer is planning something, I can feel it." She murmured. "Whatever it is, I am sure either me or Scorpion would be involved."

"Well, at least your being paranoid has made you cautious. What exactly did you mean by your clan being torn up from inside?"

Sub-Zero flinched slightly, cursing herself for having let that piece of knowledge slip. She didn't really wish to discuss matters of the Lin Kuei to outsiders. But with whom would she discuss it then? None of the Masters were present there with her, and Ryu wasn't exactly in any position to be her confidant.

"There have been…problems inside the clan." Kenshi made a face as if to say, 'Well, DUH.'. "Someone has assassinated one of the Masters, and has attempted to kill me and the others by poisoning our tea."

"WHAT?" Kenshi exclaimed. A glare from Sub-Zero reminded him that her apprentice was resting in the same room. "What?" he asked in a lower voice.

"I have no idea who or what is behind this, but I suspect Quan Chi had a hand in this."

"You have a traitor in your midst." He said simply.

"Yes," Sub-Zero ground out, unwilling to admit it. "Unfortunately that is the only logical conclusion we can come up with."

"Or maybe…You don't think it could be…" Kenshi trailed off.

"Be…?"

Kenshi shifted his gaze towards her apprentice and Sub-Zero's blood grew cold. That would make the most sense. Her apprentice had been losing some sleep, possessed by some unknown entity. Then…what did he do during the night? Zhixin told her that he saw a figure slip into his father's quarters the night before he died. Could it have been Ryu? His body controlled by that boy with the unearthly, glowing green eyes?

She looked at the boy sleeping peacefully on the bed and she could not reconcile it with the image of him looking gleefully at Tang Weishang as he poured poison down his throat.

"We have to find a way to purge him of that…that thing. Here." She finally said and threw the bottle at Kenshi, which he deftly caught.

"And what might this be?"

"A draught. I'm not so sure. Alexander, our Master Healer, prescribed it to him when he was lacking sleep. Said it would help, I'm not sure it's still applicable given the circumstances."

Kenshi sniffed the bottle and frowned. "This doesn't seem like a sleeping draught."

Sub-Zero rolled her eyes. "Alexander is a Master Healer, who is even capable of healing people without inflicting them any harm. I'm pretty sure he knows what he's doing."

"I know, I know," Kenshi relented. "I just don't know how this has affected Hanzo. Since well, you know, he probably didn't know the boy was being possessed when he gave him this stuff." He scowled and said, "What is that?" he pointed at the dresser.

Sub-Zero glanced down and saw that he was pointing at the necklace she'd seen earlier. "Oh this?" She picked it up and tossed it to him. He fumbled as he caught it, much to her surprise. "I saw it in his pack. Seemed like a family heirloom or such."

Kenshi gingerly picked it up by the chain and examined it. "It feels really…"

"Dangerous?" she asked in alarm.

He shrugged. "Eugh. Slimy."

She gave him a look of annoyance. Probably sensing her displeasure, he grinned. "It is slimy, at least for me. I don't know what it is though, it seems innocent enough." He tossed it back to her carelessly and wiped his hands on his pants.

Sub-Zero set it back on the dresser and folded her arms. "Is there anything you can do for him?"

Kenshi shook his head. "'Fraid not. We'll have to wait for Ermac, I asked him to come straight here as soon as he's been briefed regarding the…situation."

Both were silent for a moment, Sub-Zero remembering Kenshi's vote and him realizing that he'd entered potentially dangerous territory. She averted her eyes from him and instead, looked out the window to see the courtyard and training grounds.

"I saw the list of votes today," she said quietly after a moment.

"Sub-Zero…" Kenshi began but she spoke over him.

"I don't blame you, or anyone who voted in favor for Bi-Han getting executed. I know the kind of threat he poses." She didn't glance at him as she spoke, but she could still feel the pity radiating off him. "You don't have to justify your decision to me, Kenshi, if that's what you're thinking." She turned to him and gave him a sad smile. "I understand completely."

Silence reigned in the room. Kenshi busied himself with checking over Ryu once more and Sub-Zero held up the pendant and took a closer look at it. There were inscriptions at the silver borders of the emerald, but they didn't seem to be any language Sub-Zero knew. The inside of the emerald seemed to be filled with wisps of smoke that flowed around inside of it. Strange how she didn't seem to notice that at a while ago. It seemed so beautiful…

A sharp rap on the door jolted Sub-Zero out of her musings.

"Come in," Kenshi said, and the red-garbed figure of Ermac shuffled into the room. Although he was usually wrapped up, he came in maskless, due to Raiden's request that all of them bare their faces. It was necessary to build trust, he'd said.

"Greetings," he nodded at them both as he approached. "What seems to be the problem with young Hanzo?"

"He has been possessed," Sub-Zero spoke without preamble, and Ermac looked floored by her statement. "By whom, I do not know. But he has not been sleeping properly for the past few weeks, and he has gaps in his memory." She paused for a moment and Ermac gestured for her to go on. "A few days ago, we took shelter in a cave and he started clutching his head and spoke to an unseen figure. His eyes glowed green and well, he attacked me."

"When did this start?"

Sub-Zero ran a hand through her hair. "I'm not sure, but roughly a month ago."

"That is strange," Ermac mused as he pressed his glowing fingers to the boy's temple.

"I remember him telling me that his mind had been tampered with by Quan Chi when he was young. Making him believe that Scorpion killed his family."

"Hmmm," he hummed. "Yes, I can sense both of them, the spots on his mind that have been implanted by someone. The two aurae seem different, though. As of now, I can remove the older one, the one that Quan Chi placed. But the other one…it is tricky."

"Tricky? Tricky how?" Kenshi asked.

Ermac shifted uncomfortably. "Tricky meaning I could end up killing the boy."

Sub-Zero stiffened at his admission. "Explain." She demanded.

"The magic is very powerful. I would go as far to say that it is ancient magic. Because it has festered in his mind for so long, it seems that his mind and the foreign entity are almost one and the same. Extricating it from him…we would need the very same artifact that the person used."

"Festered in his mind for so long? But it's only been a month!"

Ermac gave her a look. "A week's exposure to ancient magicks such as this would already have such detrimental effects to a person, could you imagine what a month's bonding has done to him?"

"How would we find the artifact anyway?" Kenshi interjected.

"I do not know," Ermac visibly sagged. "Perhaps we could ask for Taven's or Raiden's help? Any one of the two would probably have more knowledge about it than us."

Sub-Zero then had a thought. She glanced down at the amulet in her hand. What if…

"Ermac?" she asked calmly.

"Yes?"

"What would this artifact look like?"

Ermac hummed thoughtfully. "I am unsure how to describe it. But when I see one, I would definitely know it was one."

Thrusting her hand holding the amulet towards him she said, "Would you know what this is?"

Ermac gasped and slapped the trinket out of her hand.

"Ouch, hey!" Sub-Zero massaged her wrist. If the situation hadn't been so serious, Sub-Zero would laugh at the scandalized look on Ermac's face. Kenshi however, knew no such restraint and was snickering.

"That thing is dangerous! You should not be holding it with your bare hands." Ermac grabbed Sub-Zero and led her to a chair. He plopped her down on the seat and passed his glowing hands in front of her face. The Lin Kuei Grandmaster gave up trying to bat his hands away and stood perfectly still as Ermac flitted around her, waving his glowing hands around like a mad man. After the last pass, he sighed in what Sub-Zero took to be relief and sat down on the dresser.

"Well, you are fine at least."

Sub-Zero raised an eyebrow at him. "Your concern is…touching. But if we may move on to more pressing matters?" she gestured to the amulet still on the ground.

"On it," Kenshi replied. He had procured a piece of black cloth from his person and grabbed the amulet with it. He passed it on to Ermac who held it and examined it critically.

"Its magic has been spent." He announced, looking grim.

"Meaning?" Sub-Zero pressed.

"Meaning that boy has had it for a very, very long time. Longer than a month." Kenshi finished, looking at Ermac in askance. When he nodded in assent, Sub-Zero groaned.

"This is bad, this is very, very bad." Ermac crossed his arms. "I know what to do, but I will not be able to do it alone. And even then, I am not sure it is going to work."

"What assistance do you need?" she asked.

"I need someone well-versed in the creation of potions, and a god who is willing to lend us a hand."

"We can ask Kitana or Queen Sindel. We will be leaving for Edenia in the next two days, anyway. And Raiden's always ready to help." Kenshi offered.

Ermac shook his head. "Taven would probably be a better choice. He has had dealings with dragons, yes?"

Sub-Zero furrowed her brow. "What does that have to do with anything?"

"Because this," he waved the necklace still wrapped in cloth. "Is a Dragon Artifact."

Now, Sub-Zero was sure Kenshi's and her jaws had been unhinged. "A dragon artifact? Are you sure?"

"Positive," Ermac leaned back on the dresser mirror. "The markings that surround the emerald are written in Dragon Language. Hence the reason they look like random scratch marks." Ermac dangled the amulet in front of them and Sub-Zero eyed it critically. "It is said that long ago, before the ages of men, that dragons ruled the realms. They used to trick men into accepting these amulets, and in turn, the men's minds were theirs to control." Looking at the captivating jewelry, Sub-Zero had no trouble believing it.

Kenshi whistled. "Any particular reason you know a lot about this? Thought of being a historian?" he joked.

"Well, there is the matter of having ten thousand souls stuck inside my body," Ermac deadpanned.

"I didn't know you could access their memories." Sub-Zero commented. "That's amazing."

Ermac shrugged. "I used to get disjointed dreams when I slept. I believe they were memories of the souls inside. But since that battle at that pyramid, I've been able to control what I learn, lest they overwhelm me."

"It must be the side effect of the Battle of Armageddon." Sub-Zero mused. That wish-thing was quite possibly one of the more selfless things she has ever done. She didn't know she had it in her.

"Likely," Ermac agreed. "But going back to the matter at hand. The method I know of is years old," he shifted uncomfortably. "It used to be impossible to separate the host mind from the foreign entity, but years of research and experimentation made it possible. A series of potions will be administered to the boy; they are mind strengthening potions, the kind that are taken when one wishes to be better at retaining memories and visualizing things."

Kenshi looked up at the mention of the potions. "Those are dangerous." he said sharply. "They shouldn't be taken in quick succession. Overdose could make the boy mentally and emotionally unstable."

The red-garbed warrior inclined his head in assent. "Yes, it is quite dangerous. But I would not suggest it if there actually was another way." He waited until Kenshi relaxed before continuing. "Upon ingestion of the third and most potent brew, two rituals or spells will be performed on him by a god, in our case, that would be Taven. The first is the most crucial, separating the foreign entity from his mind. With his mind stronger than usual, the hold of the parasite on his mind is weakened, and thus it can be extricated."

"It can't be that easy," Sub-Zero muttered. The more she heard about the plan, the less she liked it.

"Unfortunately, you are correct. The separation process is painful and often...lethal."

She stiffened at Ermac's pronouncement. "How effective is this process?"

"It's only ever been successfully performed twice," he admitted. "The others who died were found too 'weak-willed' to survive the process."

Sub-Zero bit her lip. Not good, not good at all. "What's the second spell?"

"The second requires the god to bind the entity to the amulet so that we may rid this world of it. It can usually be destroyed by freezing it from the inside, which I supposed you have no problems doing." Ermac nodded at her.

"Sounds like a plan." Kenshi finally spoke up. "But it's your decision."

Being the Lin Kuei Grandmaster had a lot of pros and cons. Having to decide the fate of your apprentice is one of those downsides.

"If there's a chance I could remove that thing from his mind, I'm willing to take my chances with your miracle solution. Are we heading to Edenia tomorrow?" she turned to ask Kenshi.

"Yes, we will. I believe Taven will be there as well. I'll give Sindel and Kitana a call and explain the situation." The swordsman said and excused himself to make the said call.

When the two of them were left, Ermac tentatively patted Sub-Zero on the shoulder. "Have faith, we will do our best for your apprentice."

Sub-Zero nodded but didn't reply. Silence hung awkwardly between them and Ermac turned to examine Hanzo, passing his glowing hands an inch or so above the boy. She observed him as he looked at her apprentice. A year ago, Ermac had been quite a taciturn fellow, but now he actually volunteered information. It was probably the most she heard him speak since she'd met him. Maybe, if he was feeling talkative...

"I hope you do not mind my asking. But I'd like to know…"

"About your brother? What my vote was?"

Sub-Zero nodded mutely and Ermac gave her a rare smile.

"Worry not, Lin Kuei Grandmaster, I have voted against executing him." He reassured her. Sub-Zero let out a breath she didn't remember holding in.

"Thank you," she breathed. This was it, her brother would live.

"No thanks is needed. We do not need more senseless death. If he is willing to fight for the Light, I will accept him." Just as he finished speaking, they heard a voice shout, "WHAT?! YOU ARE TELLING ME MY MURDERER IS IN HERE?!" making both of them wince.

"Well, it looks like Scorpion is back," Sub-Zero said morosely, not particularly wanting to deal with Scorpion when he was in one of his moods. Even if it was entirely justified in this instance.

"By the Elder Gods, does he have a strong pair of lungs. Good thing I knocked that kid out." Ermac muttered as Sub-Zero walked past him and made her way downstairs. She made her way across her allies who were grouped together, encircling three figures.

"Scorpion, you must calm down," Raiden spoke in his most pacifying tone. He placed a hand on Scorpion's shoulders, but immediately retracted it at the murderous glance that was sent his way.

"CALM DOWN! I WILL BE CALM WHEN THAT LIN KUEI HAS BEEN DEALT WITH!" His words hurt Sub-Zero deeply; he was spat out the name of her clan as if it were a great insult.

She pushed past people and moved behind Raiden.

"You are enjoined to cast your vote, Scorpion. No one is stopping you. But know that your opinion is not the only one which is being taken into account." Raiden spoke with finality. He crossed his arms over his chest and sent Scorpion a look.

His statement shut the ninja up, but he was obviously simmering with rage. His eyes passed over all of them, scanning the crowd until they settled on Sub-Zero's. The look of torment and utter betrayal in his gaze made Sub-Zero flinch and look away guiltily.

Liu Kang, who had been silent the whole time piped up. "Well, you said that he didn't remember anything right? Nothing after killing, you know." At Raiden's nod, he looked up, thoughtful.

"Yo, the bet's still on, ain't it?" Jax mumbled. "Ouch!"

"Now is not the time for your crap, Jax!" Sonya hissed.

"I think," the monk said slowly. "That he is still guilty for the crimes he committed."

Sub-Zero's heart plummeted to her stomach. Dear Elder Gods, no.

"And if anyone should be given the chance to exact revenge, it would be Scorpion." He announced, patting the Shirai Ryu's back. No one was as surprised at what he said as Scorpion. Although he work his mask, his eyes betrayed his dumbfounded look.

There was a strange glint in Liu Kang's eyes that Sub-Zero had never seen before.

Cruelty.

"Is that a yes, then?" Raiden's voice was strained.

"Yes." Liu Kang said confidently.

Sub-Zero's head dropped. Her pulse was pounding in her ears. She could not believe that Liu Kang had agreed to execute Bi-Han. It was definitely out of character, and something none of them had foreseen. She was unsure whether she should visit Bi-Han before he would be killed. Would he even want to see her?

"A tie then," she heard Johnny whisper to Jax. "And Scorpion's would be the deciding vote. I guess we all know where that'll lead."

Indeed they did. Sub-Zero was turning back, unable and unwilling to listen to anymore talk about her brother's death when she heard Scorpion's voice.

"I vote no."

A/N: As usual, love it or hate it, leave a review!