Disclaimer: Sadly, no X-Men characters here. Nico Wolfe makes a tiny appearance (thanks San child of the wolves), but other than that everything is my imagination.
Author's note: Brilliant idea.
So you know how sometimes you make a character with no actual background and stick him in your story? Yeah, that was Enrique Oculto/Cloak. He didn't actually have any sort of background until yesterday. I was kinda inspired by Mojo (blehk, evil blob in the comics) and his mutant fighting for some of Cloak's past, but I also was inspired by The Warrior Heir for similar reasons. Sadly, no comic book baddies, I didn't want to have to do research. Hope you like it.
(I realized while writing this Enrique's father's name: Helio, would not be pronounced the way I wanted in Spanish. It would end up being "Ey-leo", which isn't a real name, but I decided to ignore it. It's a cool name.)
Enjoy. Read. Review.
Cloak's Nightmares Realized
A man with snow-white hair turned. He was only in his early twenties and built like a soccer player. He wore a yellow jersey, black athletic shorts, and soccer cleats. Of course, it wasn't soccer, it was fútbol.
Helio faced the person calling his name, to find it was a reporter. He flashed a brilliant smile and walked toward them.
"Ah, friends. I was wondering when you would find me!" He answered in flawless Spanish. He continued to smile as he approached.
The reporter couldn't help but smile either. "Mind answering a few questions?"
"Not at all!" Helio said cheerfully.
They were standing on an indoor practice field, there weren't many others there, a few other players dressed similarly to the man, and several family members.
"How is the season going for the Dragons?" The reporter asked, the camera rolling.
"It's okay. We are trying very hard, but so are our opponents!" He laughed. "But as they say 'practice makes perfect'."
"May I ask some personal questions?"
"Of course, I have nothing to hide from my fans!" Helio responded.
"How is your son?"
Helio smiled. "Why don't you ask him yourself?" He turned back to the field. "ENRIQUE! ¡Viene aquí!"
A little boy not much older than five came running across the huge field, getting laughs from some of the players as they cheered him on. Like the man the boy had white hair, but there was a black zig-zag on the left side of his head that etched its way from his bangs to his neck. The boy ran like crazy, but wasn't having much success in terms of speed.
Finally he reached his father, who scooped him up in his arms and placed him on his shoulders.
"Enrique, the nice man wants to know how you're doing."
The boy, Enrique, scrunched his face at the camera. "Reporters. Bah! I am KING OF THE WORLD!" He shouted, throwing his arms wide.
Helio chuckled and swung the boy off his shoulders, holding him upside-down by his ankles. Enrique didn't struggle but instead looked calmly around like he was enjoying the new perspective.
The reporter laughed as well. "You are a lucky man. Your son is adorable."
"Yes, yes he is." Helio said with immense pride.
"Is he following in his father's footsteps?"
The man smiled, swinging his son around. "He is only five, but yes… he looks like he has his father's talent with a fútbol." He set Enrique down softly and whispered in his ear.
Enrique looked up gleefully at the camera. "Thank you for your questions. My father must play soccer now. Any other questions can be answered by me."
The reporter laughed. "Thank you Helio." He knelt next to the kid. "And thank you Enrique. I hope I get to interview you again someday soon."
"Just wait, you will." Enrique said with such seriousness the reporter was taken aback.
"Was Helio Oculto, the soccer player, yes." Enrique answered before the question could even be finished.
"Well no wonder you made the soccer team…" Leo laughed.
"Wait, was? Isn't he still alive?" Nico piped up.
Enrique looked down at his feet. "Yes… but I have not seen him in so long… he probably thinks I am dead… It is… hard… to be here when you do not know how your family is doing." He closed his eyes and sighed. "I was young when I came here. I… I believed leaving my family would be easy. Now I regret what I have missed with them. They never got to know me for who I am."
"We'll find them, Cloak." Clay said softly. "It's time we let families know that their children are okay."
He nodded, but didn't respond. After a few long seconds he went on. "So my powers. That was an interesting night…"
Seven years later…
"AHHHHH!" Enrique yelled, sitting bolt upright in his bed. He was now twelve, his body beginning to grow muscle and his voice was starting to change. The start of puberty often kick-starts mutant's powers.
He rubbed his head. The dream wasn't… truly frightening, but the idea of it scared him.
His parents burst through his door, Helio was wielding cleats, and his mother simply walked in behind him. Enrique's mother had long black hair and keen features. Both were in their pajamas, making Helio's intimidating stance completely worthless.
"What, where are you?" Helio asked half-asleep.
"Enrique?" His mother called out, looking around.
The boy was puzzled. He was sitting right there. But both his parents were looking around like they couldn't see him. Curious, he looked down at his hands and yelled out again. His hands weren't there. He wasn't there. He reached his arm out and felt his toes.
Okay, so they're there, they're just not… there. He thought.
"Enrique, wh-where are you?"
Enrique shook his head, still trying to grasp the concept. "I am here." He stated. His parents looked at him but it was still obvious they couldn't see him. "I think… I am invisible."
Helio reached out cautiously, and grabbed Enrique's shoulder. He gasped.
Suddenly the air around Enrique shimmered and he appeared. He looked down at his hands confused. What had just happened?
Closing his eyes he tried to turn invisible on command. It worked, as far as he could tell at least because his parents started freaking out again. Continuing to concentrate he willed himself to be visible, and his parents calmed down a little.
"W-what's happening to me?" Enrique asked. He was freaked out. "What am I?"
"I-I don't know…" His father muttered. He glanced at his wife, who looked just as shocked. "Was that why you screamed?"
Enrique groaned and fell back on his bed. "No."
"Well, then why—"
"I had a dream."
His mother sat at the foot of his bed. "A nightmare?"
The boy scrunched his eyes shut. He was trying his best not to make his voice shake. "No, not a nightmare." His parents waited for him to explain farther. "I-I was with a guy. Okay? It freaked me out."
His father blinked, clearly not understanding, but his mother placed a hand on his ankle. "When you say you were with a guy, what exactly—"
Enrique cut her off, sitting straight up. "I was kissing him, mom!" His tone was close to being angry, something that wasn't in his character. "And worse yet I liked it! The idea… I cannot be gay, mom! I will never have a friend again if I am!"
"Enrique, calm down—"
"Calm down? Calm down?" Enrique laughed sourly. "Everything I am was just thrown into question. First I have a dream about being with a guy when I am supposed to feel that way about girls. Then I like it, it feels natural, it made me happy. And then lastly I find out I can turn invisible! Yes, yes, let us calm down."
Helio stood up straighter. "We will continue this in the morning."
"Helio, he needs us now." The woman urged.
"No, he needs to answer some questions for himself. Then he can talk to us."
Enrique roared with anger and actually flung his pillow at his father. "DAD I NEED YOU NOW! This is not just something you can hope goes away!" His voice lowered. "I need to know you will love me no matter what."
Helio couldn't answer, but stood there gaping at his son.
The boy put his head on his knees and flopped over onto his side, curling up into a ball. "Thanks Dad, your silence speaks volumes."
"No I will not answer any questions at this time." Enrique grumbled as Leo opened his mouth.
Leo shut his mouth quickly and looked up at the ceiling.
"So you are all probably wondering how I got to the States then. Well it involved a telepath who convinced me that sneaking onto a cargo ship was a good idea."
Enrique pulled the hood of his sweatshirt farther over his head. He was trying to not draw attention to himself, and his white hair normally did it. A lot of people recognized him as the great Helio Oculto's son. It got annoying when he was just trying to go outside.
The air was thick with fog and sent a chill down Enrique's spine. He crept through the thick air toward the café where he was meeting a few friends. Anything to get him out of his house for a little while. Things were just too tense at home for his liking.
He turned his head slightly and saw a few suspicious characters on the street corner. Not wanting to have to even deal with them he turned invisible and snuck by them. At least that was something cool, being able to turn invisible. He sighed as he walked past the men and rounded the corner. As he walked by a side alley he had the sudden urge to stop. Nearly against his will he did, turning visible at the same moment.
"Well, well, what do we have here?" A voice echoed from the alley.
Enrique frowned. The man was speaking English, and he only had a little experience with the language.
"A mutant! By luck!" The man emerged from the alley and dragged Enrique back. The boy whirled around ready to defend himself, but the man placed a hand on his forehead and he froze.
With only his eyes still being able to move he watched silently. The man wasn't really a man, but a form made of the wisps of fog. Eyes peered out from the smoky-looking man, but little else was noticeable about him.
The man smirked, teeth appearing on his smoky face. "My associates will be pleased. A mutant like this! By luck!" The shape moved around the frozen boy. "An unresisting mind… easily coerced this one…" He mused. He touched Enrique's shoulder and the boy stumbled forward into the wall in front of him.
"What… what you want?" Enrique muttered, trying to pick words in English out. He could only recognize a few words, but from this man's voice he could tell he was pleased about something.
"Ah, yes. I suppose you cannot understand me. I'll try to make this simple." The man said, walking over and dragging Enrique up off the ground. As much as Enrique wanted to squirm away he could not. The man pointed a half-formed hand at his chest. "I am Grey." He pointed at Enrique, placing his finger on the boy's chest. "And you are going to do what I say."
Enrique resisted the urge to cry out as something picked at the back of his brain. Feeling extremely violated he tried to shrink back, but the man placed his forefinger and thumb on his forehead.
Suddenly everything went black.
Images swam in front of Enrique's vision as he began to come to. He tried to sit up but found he could not. It was hot and stuffy where he was, a dim light swung overhead, and he recognized the texture of canvas cloth underneath him. He felt the swaying under him and realized he was on a ship. He blinked, trying to bring his vision into clarity and saw a form to his left.
"Grey…" He whispered.
The man stood, his form little more than smoke in the room. He smiled wide, white teeth appearing on his face. "My guest, welcome. In a few moments we shall be in America."
"A-America?" Enrique croaked.
"I believe my powers worked well at enhancing your ability to interpret, no?"
Enrique managed to nod his head. He caught most of what Grey said.
"I hope you like fighting. You'd be surprised how many people want to see underground mutant fights. Of course, very few realize just what we are, what we can do." Grey mused, walking closer to the boy.
The white-haired mutant grimaced. "I do not fight."
Grey laughed. "You will learn."
The ship suddenly lurked forward and there was a groaning noise. Grey smiled and placed a hand on Enrique's forehead, and the boy felt the prick of his powers before he sunk back into blackness.
When he came to again he knew he was off that ship. He found himself in a cement room on a stone slab. This time he could move when he opened his eyes. After they adjusted to the light he realized he wasn't in a room. He was in a cell.
He sat up, attempting to stand, but he fell onto the ground. His legs weren't quite ready to support his weight. His brown sweatshirt was gone, replaced by an odd fabric long-sleeved black shirt. Gray cargo shorts were on his legs, but he couldn't remember if he was wearing that when he left. He knew he had been gone for a while, but was surprised to find himself smelling halfway decent. With a shiver he realized Grey had probably dictated his every movement since leaving Spain.
Cautiously, he stood and slunk up to the grated door. He peered around, sticking his head between two bars. The room was in a long hallway, and he wasn't the only one there.
"Ey look, the noob's up." A girl's voice sounded.
Enrique looked around. Others were coming to the bars of their cells now, all of varying ages. There was a teenage boy playing with a metal Slinky, after a few seconds Enrique noticed his arms were coiled in a similar fashion as the toy. A girl directly across from him came up to her door, but Enrique looked away quickly. She had what looked like blood down the front of her shirt, on her hands, and a slight bit around her mouth. Every one of the young mutants were grimy and hungry looking, some wore fierce expressions while others had hollow eyes.
"¿Dóndeestoy?" Enrique asked. With Grey gone he was unable to understand any of the English words the other mutants were speaking.
The girl across from him rolled her eyes, rubbing her bloodied hands on a pair of light-wash jeans. "Looks like we have another Spaniard. Too bad the last one bit the dust." She glared right at him. "Soy 'Tick'. Welcome to Hell, chico."
That he recognized. Hell.
He was doomed.
Enrique staggered back and clutched his head. This wasn't happening. It couldn't be happening.
Suddenly the murmurs of the others made clear sense. Enrique rushed back up to the bars.
"Grey…" He whispered, watching the man of smoke walk down the hallway. He was speaking animatedly with another man, this one taller and normal in appearance with tanned skin and black curly hair. He appeared to be of Arab descent.
The other mutants backed away quickly from their bars, hiding in the immediate shadows so they could still hear what the men were saying.
"I don't care Grey! Invisibility?What am I supposed to do with that? It is no good for fighting, not nearly showy enough." The new man grumbled.
Grey wrung his hands together, his image wavering. "He will learn to fight."
"He is too young."
Grey stepped in front of the man, stopping him. "But him being young is good. We can shape him how we wish, teach him to fight to entertain."
The Arab man waved his arm, silencing Grey. "No, no. Perhaps he will be good for the breeding program. He has a nice facial structure, and we know the audience loves to root for the attractive ones."
The smoke man shook his head. "No, he will not participate in breeding."
"And why is that?" The Arab man asked, raising an eyebrow.
"The boy is not like the others."
The other man threw his hands up. "You bring me a gay mutant? He's young, it is a phase!"
Grey laughed. "The mind cannot hide its truth. The boy will be a fighter."
"No, thanks to science we don't need his willingness to breed him." The man walked around Grey and continued on, before stopping in front of Enrique's cell. He reached out and took the boy's chin. "Good features and he of course carries the X Gene. He will do. Until he is mature we will train him to fight. He will serve as practice for our real fighters." The man walked on, Grey following behind. "I send you to Spain and you bring back him? BAH! Worthless!"
Enrique backed away from the bars and wrapped his arms around his torso. Their words made his skin crawl.
"Poor kid." A voice from the hall echoed.
"Poor kid? He's one of the lucky ones. He'll live long." The girl, Tick, from across the way said angrily.
"When was Dusk coming by again?" The other voice whispered.
Tick shushed him. "You want to wreck our only hopes of escape? Soon he said."
"Actually…" There was a more mature voice now. It was harmonious but tinged with anger. Enrique was curious about his voice and crept back to the bars of his cell.
A man with purple and black armor on and a sleek purple helmet stood in front of Tick's cell. He seemed to be the source of the voice.
"I am here now." The shadows all along the hall vibrated and all the cell doors flung open. He stepped back and watched all the young mutants walk out. "Quiet now, and gather around."
"Quiéneres?" Enrique asked, approaching the new man.
He turned his helmeted head to the white-haired boy. "Me llamo 'Dusk'. Estoy aquí ayudar."
Enrique nodded, thinking only: Just get me out of here.
"Quickly, quickly!" Dusk yelled softly, ushering the mutants around him. "It won't be long before they return. I am offering you all a place to stay, but if you wish we can try to get you back to your families. But if you stay with me you can learn to use your powers how you want, and you won't have to fight again."
"What if we like fighting?" One gruff voice called out.
A smile reached Dusk's purple eyes. "Then there is still a place for you. You may compete in competitions… only if you wish."
There was the sound of pounding feet from the adjacent hallways.
"Is this everyone?"
The girl Tick nodded. "That's it for this facility. I can help you find the others."
"Great, then let's be off!" Dusk shouted, the shadows curling around all the figures in the group.
Blackness surrounded Enrique once again, but this was different than the one induced by Grey. He was aware that they were moving, and the world around him was cold. Suddenly his feet found the ground once again and he was astounded to find himself in a large stone cavern with rows of bench seats along the walls. It looked like a Roman arena, but with a modern twist. Industrial lights hung from the ceiling, illuminating the arena.
Dusk looked around at the group of new mutants. He removed his helmet, revealing a handsome young man in his twenties with jet black hair and eerie purple eyes.
"Welcome to the Haven."
Tada! Yeah, random writing ideas!
So this is mainly read by D-Factor readers, and I have good news. I actually planned out the next five chapters. (Although one might be several parts long) There will be less Haven characters, but it's all part of the plan. And there'll be a lot more Brotherhood. Oh yeah, Magneto has a lot planned. WHAHA! Oh sorry, right... cliffhanger.
Anyways I was thinking about putting a lot more Spanish and then translations into this chapter, buuuut my Spanish is getting a little rusty.
Next is Xander, followed by the two Wolfes (who I might just put together in one mega chapter), and then the finale. CLAY DUNE! Stay tuned!
(And thanks for all the reviews and special thanks to San child of the wolves, whose kind words helped me out. Hopefully I can get everything sorted out.)