In all honesty, I meant to update on Sunday, the end of the week as I had promised. However, FF dot net had other ideas. Such as wreaking havoc on the format of the story, logging me off unexpectedly as well as flooding my inbox with update alerts to stories I've never even heard of. And to top it all off, my internet also joined in the rebellion.
To cut this rant short, I present to you the next chapter!
Many thanks to those that have taken the time to review.
A/N #1: This is a continuation to "Five Times Someone Saved Party Poison: And One Time They Couldn't." I would suggest reading that first in order to get a feel for what is going on, especially the last two chapters as they deal with 'Na Na Na' and 'SING'. All the OC Killjoys are introduced there.
A/N #2: My good friend, Shinn Asuka- Destiny's Warrior, and I have been working on the Dangerverse/Killjoy world together. Though this particular piece is not co-authored, we've collaborated on several ideas. Her latest work, a spectacular read, is "Disenchanted". Definitely check it out!
PLEASE DO REMEMBER TO REVIEW: WRITER'S ARE DISCOURAGED OTHERWISE AND DON'T FEEL LIKE UPDATING :c
Sugar Fiend was on high alert, goggle-protected eyes scanning the night sky.
The moon was at its crescent stage and provided little light, but the powerful beam of her bike showed her what lay a few feet ahead.
She held her radio to her masked face.
"Everything all right, Biscuit?"
"Just fine Fiend. Keep alert."
Fiend dialed another code.
"Everything looks clear, Motorbaby. Tell Crim for me will you?"
"Sure thing Fiend. Don't worry about it."
They had passed the last Zone marker over half an hour ago, a clear indication that they'd left the zones.
The ground underneath them became smooth asphalt, and within minutes they passed the first black and white sign that marked the outer edges of Battery City.
Sugar Fiend held a closed fist up, signaling a stop.
Next to her, Space Biscuit eased off the throttle and the Jeep, van and truck behind her slowed to a standstill.
Now, it was all a matter of patience.
Sugar Fiend drew her raygun. Better to be caught prepared than unaware.
Brian stepped on the gas of the vehicle, launching it across the paved roads of Battery City. They were quickly approaching the Western exit.
"I don't know if there will be guards there already or not. We're a little late."
"Yeah." Fun Ghoul said simply, feeling that the words were more than appropriate, hitting closer to home than he would have liked.
"Look under the seat," Brian said, taking a sharp turn that lurched the vehicle to the left, "If they're there, I'll try to get them to open the gate. They might try to check the back, and that's when you'll have to take them out."
Fun Ghoul did as he was told, searching for a few minutes until his fingers touched something smooth and long.
He pulled the weapon out and examined it closely.
It was a white rifle, scoped and almost beautiful in its promised danger.
"It has a targeting system, locks on to whatever you want to shoot," Brian mentioned, "It was a new prototype, first and only one made."
Fun Ghoul allowed himself a little grin at that. Dracs were usually bad shooters, and a targeting system could make them much more lethal, perhaps more so than the Scarecrows. He was glad that BL/Ind. now no longer had such a weapon.
He wasn't a sharp shooter, no, he'd rather fight close range or hold a bazooka, Party had been the long distance expert, followed closely by Jet.
He placed the butt of the rifle against his shoulder.
"Pull the bolt handle once to turn it on," Brian stated, making another swerve.
Ghoul pulled on it and the weapon seemed to come to life. The scope lit up a light green, and the stripe that ran on the side of the weapon from its stock to its forestock glowed a gentle white.
"It does have a bit of recoil though, so hold on to it."
Ghoul nodded absently, looking through the scope.
It amplified the world around him, lighting up the darkness in a hazy green color.
"Does it have infrared?"
"Yeah, but it doesn't always work. The radiation messes with it a lot. Or so I've heard."
"How do I lock on?"
"Pull on the trigger once. A red dot should appear on your target."
Fun Ghoul pointed the muzzle towards the window, fixed the side mirror in the crosshairs and pulled the trigger once.
Just as Brian had said, a small red dot blinked at him through the scope.
He was about to ask about the weapon's accuracy when Brian told him to put it away.
"We're coming up on the exit booth."
A Draculoid came out of the small white stand, raising a hand, signaling them to stop.
Brian slowed the car down, swallowed thickly, and prepared the lie.
"Identification," The Draculoid stated simply, as Brian opened the window and flashed his ID.
The Draculoid typed on his handheld touch pad. "You were not authorized a transport Dr. Pelissier."
"Check your list again."
The Drac looked down again and Brian gave Ghoul a look out of the corner of his eyes.
Ghoul quickly drew out the rifle, aimed and fired. The shot was muted and the rifle kicked back against his shoulder, but Ghoul held it steady and took aim again, this time staring out through the scope at the second Drac that had come out of the booth.
The black-haired Killjoy dropped him with a clean shot to the head.
Brian stepped on the gas once more and they shot straight through the barrier.
The sound of the splintering wood reminded Ghoul of the first time he'd heard that sound.
More than two weeks ago, when they'd first come to the cursed city in the Trans AM, to rescue Grace.
He allowed the thought to fade, it hurt too much, brought up things that he wasn't ready to deal with.
Ghoul slid the Drac mask off, anger making his finger rougher as he allowed the thing to fall to his lap, from where he swept it to the car floor. He licked his lips, and looked out the window.
The car was eating up ground fast.
"Will he…"he paused, unsure. Did he really want to know, right at this moment? Did he really want to spoil the success of the great escape they'd just accomplished? "Will he get better?"
Brian would not meet his eyes but there was confidence in his voice.
"His reprogramming began a little over a week ago. He wasn't…wasn't strong enough before that. We got him out before the last round of the reprogramming drugs could be administered…with time, he will get better."
Brian shook his head. "I don't know, it's never been attempted before. Party Poison will be the first that will ever be brought back."
Ghoul grit his teeth. He knew the kid had just saved them, had just risked his life for all of them but he'd been working for BL/Ind. before, he'd gone along with them before.
Brian gave him a perplexed glance.
"Is this some kind of freaking experiment for you?"
The young scientist's hands clenched around the steering wheel. "No. It never was, and it never will be. I won't hurt him, or you, or anyone else."
Ghoul sighed. "I-I'm just…I'm sorry, I guess. I don't mean to be mistrustful."
"And I don't mean to sound aloof or detached, it's just…" Brian cleared his throat, "I'm leaving behind everything I know, all on a gut feeling…"
"Just a gut feeling?"
"Maybe more of a change of heart."
Ghoul nodded absently, shifting his tight grip around the scoped rifle.
"Will he be the same?"
"There shouldn't be any adverse effects…but he'll be going through withdrawal."
Ghoul closed his eyes. Not again, not again.
He flashed back more than a decade, to a time when Party,no, not Party…it was Gerard, had spent a long time lost in oblivion, in the darkness of the addiction that had once consumed him.
"I'll get better." Gerard had insisted as Frank had helped him up, off the ground.
He shook his head to clear the memories away.
Brian kept his eyes on the road ahead. His fingers itched, he wanted to turn on the radio system and hear whether or not his treachery had been discovered. But the signal might be used to track them, and he stilled his impulses.
The man next to him seemed to be far away but Brian couldn't allow himself to be distracted. The powerful light beams of the transport illuminated the rough desert ground a good few feet ahead.
He spotted it in the distance, growing closer and something that tasted of triumph rose in his chest as a smile broke on his face.
We made it. We made it!
Korse looked over the report, long, pale fingers keeping a sure grip on the touch pad that Isoda had offered to him.
The woman had risen in the ranks of the company in the few weeks she'd been there, proving her loyalty repeatedly and gaining many powerful supporters.
She smirked at him as he looked at her.
"Is this report accurate?"
"It was run twice, by our senior scientists. It has been confirmed by three teams below them."
"Does the Director know yet?"
"He was sent a copy while I brought this one to you. He was very excited to hear the news. S#717 has a more powerful variation of the mutation than that found in Patient Zero and prisoner #55. His blood work is proving incredibly enlightening."
Korse grinned. "Who would have thought that the king rat would posses such beneficial genetics."
"The Director wants him shipped to Central immediately, so that he may be closer to the labs. He is no longer to be sent on missions."
"It's a pity I'm being robbed of a perfectly serviceable Scarecrow."
"Do not forget that he is Better Living's property, Exterminator, not yours. Besides, once the scientists have finished their work with him, I've been told he will be sent back to you. Entertain yourself with the other three in the meantime."
Korse was about to reply when the alarms blared. He threw a look toward Isoda before storming in the direction of the door.
He needn't have bothered. A scientist stepped into the conference room, trembling as he delivered the blow.
"Prisoners number 35476, 35477, 35478 and 55 are gone."
Korse was across the room in a few strides, claw-like grip around the scientist's throat raising him up, off the floor.
His voice was deadly, his eyes flared in a terrible anger that made the scientist stutter as he delivered the last of the news.
"T-t-they to-took S#717 w-wi-with them."
The Exterminator slammed him against the wall, once, twice, three times until Isoda yelled for him to stop.
"He's a senior scientist Korse! Drop him this instant!"
Korse let the man fall to the floor. "How did they escape?"
"We don't know yet," The scientist blubbered, shielding his face, "We don't know."
Sugar Fiend raised the radio to her mouth.
"Time check please."
"It's seven minutes past midnight."
Her gloved fingers itched for the throttle and she settled for simply tightening them around her ray gun.
"There's a vehicle approaching!" Space Biscuit yelled to her.
Sugar Fiend closed her eyes briefly.
They were minutes from having them back. The Fabulous Killjoys. Sonic Zombie…
The black BL/Ind. transport slowed down, and with the motor still running, two figures stepped out of the front.
Fun Ghoul couldn't believe they'd made it.
It didn't feel real, didn't sink in, but he was free, they were free.
He could barely make out the shapes a few feet ahead, and he raised his hand to shield his eyes from the blaring lights of the bikes.
It was Sugar Fiend, and Space Biscuit. And Motorbaby was stepping out of her jeep, Lady Biscuit in tow. And he could hear Crimson Sigh's happy laugh and Wolf Venom's cheer, and it felt so good to be back, to be home in the desert, that he almost forgot about Party Poison.
Brian was standing behind him awkwardly, unsure of what to do, completely out of his element. But he smiled at him when Ghoul looked back, and nodded at the wordless question in his eyes.
The younger man ran back to the parked transport, rapping the side twice with a closed fist, the signal he'd told Jet Star he would give when they were safe.
The back door opened and Sonic Zombie stepped out first.
Jet Star grinned at him, Party Poison curled against him, Kobra Kid to his other side. His eyes were misty and he held up a single fist in victory.
"We made it," Brian voiced.
Jet Star simply nodded. Emotion had robbed him of his voice.
Sonic Zombie had known she would be there. It would be totally unlike her not to have participated in their rescue. And wholly unlike Dr. Death Defying to not have called upon her.
He watched her from afar, as Fun Ghoul enveloped her in an embrace.
He hesitated. She would be angry with him. She might even hit him.
Scratch that. She would most definitely hit him.
He was a man of action, a man of motion but there was something so singularly unique to who she was, what she meant to him, that threw him off kilter completely.
She caught his eyes.
A million things were there, and he found himself giving her a lopsided grin.
Sugar Fiend strode towards him and he prepared himself.
She did have a mean right hook after all.
Her eyes were on fire, her posture tense and just as he'd expected and known, he found himself placing a hand against his cheek seconds later, against the heat of his now stinging skin.
"Hello to you too, Sugar."
And then she all but crumpled against him, arms around his waist, fingers clutching at the thin material of his white prisoners' uniform.
"You left me you selfish bastard."
There was fury there, but also something close to breaking and he hugged her tightly.
"I wish I could apologize, but I'm not sorry, Fiend. I can't be. You were safe and that's all that mattered."
She said nothing, just continued to embrace him.
"This conversation isn't over Sonic, if you think you're getting off the hook that easily, you're not."
"I know Fiend," He told her, mounting her bike with her, looping his arms around her waist, "I know you all too well."
She jabbed an elbow into his ribs and he laughed, he actually laughed and it had been so long since he'd felt like himself it hurt to remember that not everything was okay, that not everything would return to normalcy so quickly. Because Sugar Fiend loved Party Poison like family, and she'd saved his life and he'd saved hers, and a bond like that wasn't likely to be broken.
You better fight to come back, Poison, you better fight with all you've got you red-haired son of a bitch, because if you don't, you're going to hurt her and then I'll have to kick your ass. And your boys won't defend you because you'll have hurt them too.
Sugar Fiend knew something was wrong when only Fun Ghoul approached her. He was happy to see her, happy to see them all but there was a tightness in his smile, a deep sadness in his eyes.
As she mounted her bike, Sonic Zombie right behind her, Motorbaby cast her a questioning glance that she had no way of responding to.
They all needed answers.
But for now, they could wait. They could wait and believe in the great blow they'd dealt to BL/Ind.
Her family was slowly being pieced together again, and for that she was thankful.
Brian drove in silence, and Fun Ghoul said nothing as well. They'd decided against moving their three companions in the back, and Jet Star had assured them that he could handle both brothers.
Hope had blossomed in his chest again, when he'd hugged Sugar Fiend and Motorbaby. The near haggard look on their faces betrayed problems that they had yet to voice, but the pure joy there upon seeing him again made him smile. There would be time, later, to discuss and talk and say the things that needed to be said. For now, he could allow his eyes to close.
The desert landscape streamed by them, like water, and he became lost in his dreams.
Every time you, the reader, don't leave a review, Korse captures another Killjoy!