Hey guys, I just want to thank everyone who has reviewed this story, especially the people who calmed my nerves about people possibly no longer liking my story, you all have greatly improved my confidence and I hope everyone enjoys this chapter along with the remaining chapters, which is probably three to five chapters left, if that.
They had been walking for a good hour now when they finally came to a clearing and, looking down they could see an airplane hangar, and seeing people patrolling the area he happily assumed that they had found the 2nd Mass.
"I haven't seen so many people in one place in ages" Dr. Thomas said, having exchanged names along the way as an icebreaker.
Tom walked ahead, leading the group towards what they hoped to be their salvation.
Getting closer to the hangar more and more people noticed the approaching group and were first on edge but soon recognized Tom and Maggie. Their guards lowered a little, but still a little wary of the three unknown people traveling with them.
Dai was among the people who noticed their arrival and was also the first to walk up and embrace Tom in a manly hug and carefully welcoming Maggie back as well with the delicate state she was in.
"This day has just been full of surprises Tom, first Hal shows up then-"
At hearing his son's name Tom froze, alarm racing through him.
"W-wait Hal's here?" he exchanged fearful looks with Maggie.
Dai looked at them oddly, wondering why they weren't happy with the news.
"Yeah, he showed up about a half n' hour ago, he was kind of beaten up but otherwise okay. What's going on Tom, what aren't you telling me?"
Without answering his question Tom asked one of his own, adrenaline making his whole body shake.
"Where is he?" his face was all serious, eyes dark with fear.
Dai was slightly taken aback by Tom's attitude but he answered him immediately, "he's talking with Weaver, I think Matt was in there as well"
Hearing that his youngest was with that monster Tom took off, not waiting for Maggie to catch up with him.
Tom could hear Dai's shouts behind him, asking him what was going on but he didn't have time to explain, he needed to get to the imposter before it hurt anyone.
Entering the hangar people stared on in shock as he barreled past them, only stopping shortly to ask a woman where Weaver was; she took her sweet time answering him, probably in shock over seeing Weaver's 2nd in command, but she eventually did and Tom took off in the direction she had pointed.
Approaching Weaver's command center the people who were crowded around the tent parted for him as he barged into the shelter. Disrupting the meeting that was going on inside.
Before Weaver could say anything Tom laid eyes on the imposter and stalked towards it and roughly grabbed it by the shirt collar, forcing it back until it was bending awkwardly over the table.
"You hurt them and I swear to god I will find a way to kill you" he vowed, his eyes dark with evil intent.
It smiled up at him, infuriating Tom further, he so badly wanted to kill the thing right now but his son would die as well and he'd be damned if that happened. He'd already lost so much, he couldn't lose his oldest.
Several pairs of arms wrapped around him, pulling him off of the figure beneath it and restrained him. He would have done more but he was still so weak from being without nutrition for so long and his injuries had greatly weakened him.
"What the hell is going on Tom?" Weaver demanded as he walked forward, stupidly standing in front of the imposter, leaving him vulnerable to attack.
"That is not my son. It tortured Maggie and me for information on the 2nd Mass.' location" he growled, glaring at the imposter.
He saw it pick something up from the table but Weaver was blocking his view of the object it had picked up.
Things were not going the way it had envisioned but it could manipulate this to its advantage, and now that it thought about it could prove to be even more fun than its original plan.
Seeing that one of the soldiers had conveniently dropped their handgun, so it covertly picked the firearm up, slowly standing up while hiding the gun behind its back. Now all it had to do was wait for the perfect moment to attack.
As Tom was talking to Weaver it saw that all eyes were on Tom, listening to what he had to say, making this the opportune time. Without further ado it wrapped its arm around Weaver's neck and pulled him back so that his back was against its chest, the gun pressing into the side of the captain's skull.
"He's right, I'm not Hal. By the way, thank you so much Tom for blowing the whistle! now we can skip right to the good stuff. How about we begin by painting the walls with the dear captain's blood and brain matter? I think it'll accent your corpses quite nicely" it grinned, tightening its hold on Weaver when he tried to elbow him in the gut.
He knew something was off with the teen, all his instincts telling him that Hal wasn't right and it turns out he should have trusted those feelings more and he was paying for it now.
'Never turn you back on your enemy' that was one of the golden rules he had followed even before the invasion and one of the times he should have done just that he had left himself vulnerable for attack. He was the captain of the 2nd Mass. There were hundreds of people who depended on him to keep them save, mistakes like this couldn't happen.
Ben had been watching the events transpire and was now waiting for the best moment to make his move, the imposter was using Weaver as a shield so he wouldn't be able to attack from the front without potentially harming Weaver, but he could see that it's right side was open for attack.
Whatever was keeping Weaver hostage, it definitely wasn't his brother, he could feel the tingling of an alien device echoing off of it, leaving a bad taste in his mouth. This thing was evil, that he knew and he needed to stop it before it could hurt anyone.
Lunging forward he rammed it to the side, both of them slamming into the side of the tent and causing the whole shelter to come tumbling down on top of them.
Pulling the material off of himself Ben rose from the ground, turning his head just in time to receive a punch in the face, he stumbled back, surprisingly dazed from the unexpected blow.
His vision going back to normal Ben faced the imposter and retaliated, managing to land a few shots to its face and chest, but it returned his shots blow for blow, never seeming to tire.
He tried to land a kick to its stomach but as he was going in for the kick it grabbed his ankle and twisted, the sound of his bone snapping rung in the air, for the first time in a long while and the pain surprisingly helped him feel human, for so long he had felt like a freak, he still caught people staring at him like he was going to snap at any moment and kill them all.
"I must admit, you have proven yourself to be quite the opponent but like in all fights there has to be a victor" dropping Ben's leg it delivered a final blow right into his gut, hurling him back with such force that the wind was knocked out of him a second time when he made contact with the concrete floor.
Several soldiers tried to rush it but none of them managed to land a hit, guns went off but each one somehow missed, the hands holding them too erratic with movement to aim properly. It tossed each of these soldiers to the side, they tumbled to the ground, some of them even died on impact from hitting their heads too hard, killing them instantly.
Picking up the gun it had dropped, it aimed the gun on Ben but before it could pull the trigger a second gun appeared, this one wielded by none other than Pope, the gun aimed directly at its head.
He knew the fucker was an alien spy! No goddamn way could anyone walk away from a whole colony of aliens in the kind of shape he returned in, the only way being if he was the aliens' latest bitch.
He watched as the razorback fought the spy, for a while the two were evenly matched but the spy soon gained the advantage and the razorback was down. Then followed a huge group of soldiers but he took them down in even less time than it took to take the razorback down.
Seeing that the spy now had a gun aimed on the razorback, he contemplated just letting him kill the freak, kill two birds with one stone, but decided that he didn't want to give the spy the satisfaction of another kill. Cocking his gun he walked towards the teen, his gun aimed at his head.
"Mother fucking alien spy" just as he was about to shoot the teen snatched his wrist and applied enough pressure to make him drop the gun and was swiftly punched across the face. He whirled through the air then collapsed to the ground, he could taste the blood filling his mouth from biting his cheek and the teeth that had been knocked loose.
It laughed at the human's attempt to kill it, Pope, as he was called by many, allowed his rage to consume him, he attacked without thought, only thinking of the present instead of what would follow and that was his grave error. He didn't have a plan B when he aimed his gun at its head.
While Pope wheezed on the ground, trying to catch his breath, it didn't waste a second as it fired a bullet into his gut. Blood spewed from the wound and coated the ground with spots and lines of Pope's life force.
He turned his back on her, not able to look at her while he contemplated the likelihood that she wasn't his mom and was in fact a cruel joke the doppelganger had created to mess with his head.
A long blanket of silent had enveloped them for what seemed like hours, she was giving him space to think things through, but she was becoming impatient, he could tell by the humming coming from her, a habit his mom had whenever she was bored or impatient about something.
She finally broke, "I know you don't trust me, but you need to listen to what I have to say. You need to stop focusing on the light, its only there to distract you from the real way out; it's been with you the entire time, the key to your escape is the same way the doppelganger got out"
He looked at her, not believing what was coming out of her mouth. This was definitely not his mother, this was some sick allusion the doppelganger had dreamed up to distract him from finding the way out.
"Continuing the way you are is only going to give it more time to hurt those you love, I know what I'm telling you sounds insane but it's the only way" it persisted.
Turning to face the allusion he glared, rage at the doppelganger for using the image of his mother to fuck with his head.
"Cut the bullshit! You're not my mother, your an allusion it made to fuck with my head and keep me from taking back control. So you can say whatever the hell you want to but I'm not going to listen to anything you have to say" Hal moved to walk away but a sharp pain erupted in the back of his neck, forcing him to his knees.
"I can only open the door Hal, your the one who needs to walk through it" it stated, almost having to shout over the screams that were coming from Hal.
Blood trickled down his neck, his skin seemed to be splitting open by whatever the allusion was doing to him. He screamed as he drowned in the fire that was igniting deep within his body.
Grasping his neck, he could feel the warm slickness of his blood, smearing his hands in its essence but there was no mistaking the feeling of something pushing its way out, while causing him unbelievable amounts of pain. Wanting the intrusive attack to stop he reached into the opening and felt around, his fingers slipping in the flowing blood until he fingers made contact with a smooth cylindrical object.
Darkness began to creep in on him, the only light coming from the opening in his neck. He didn't know if the allusion of his mother was still there, even if it was he wouldn't spare it a glance, whatever was going on was because of it and he wasn't going to give it the satisfaction of watching him beg for mercy.
Finally, he got a solid grip on the object and pulled it out of his neck, the object turning out to have wires of sorts attached to it from the uncomfortable feeling of something snagging the tissue in his spine.
As soon as the object was out of his neck, a strong burst of energy went through him, taking his breath away. What followed was an attack on the senses; loud unidentifiable screeches attacked his hearing while a blinding white light went right for his sensitive retinas. His eyes closed themselves and his hands rose to clamp down on his ears, both reflexes going into self-defense.
It could physically feel the moment Hal deactivated it; it was like being encased in a block of ice, the coldness seeped into its whole being and spread out to focus on all parts, its breath became shallower and it couldn't move any of its muscles. It could also feel the wetness of blood weeping down its neck, trailing down its back and staining its shirt with blood.
No longer able to retain control of the movement of its hands the gun fell and clattered onto the ground. Its body then caved in on itself, dropping to its knees it took a moment to look around, taking everything in, it knew it was being locked up again, never again could it bath in its victim's blood or watch the light leave their eyes; the only entertainment it would have from now on are memories.
Vision beginning to cloud it closed its eyes and felt the physical pull of its chains wrapping themselves around it and pulling it back into its cage, locking the door and throwing away the key.
With Ben cradled in his arms, groaning in pain from his injuries, Tom watched as the imposter began to die, he didn't know how he knew but he just did, call it hunch or father's intuition it didn't matter, all he knew was that Hal had beaten it, his son was returning.
Matt had ran to his dad's side while the imposter was down, hugging him, his body slightly shaken from fear but never once did he look away, he wanted to see that thing die, because if it died that meant Hal could come back, his big brother would return and they could be a family again.
Though pain was rattling his body, Ben didn't allow that to make him miss seeing that bastard go down. After taking away Hal, he wished the most painful torture imaginable on it, death would never do, death would be a blessing to the kind of pain Ben wanted it to endure, he wanted it to feel the pain it had caused all of its victims and forever feel their agony.
His body felt so weak, it took most of what little energy he had to open his eyes but he had to shut them again when the new lighting was too much and wait a few moments before using more energy than he had to open them once again.
When his vision had cleared, he almost couldn't breathe when he saw the people around him, namely his dad and brothers. He was startled to see Ben lying in their father's arms, badly beaten and groaning in pain. They all had their eyes on him, watching him intently.
He could tell the moment Hal had returned, the darkness that had been in the imposter's eyes had been wiped away and once again had emotion and life in them, Hal's eyes. His his son was very weak, his movements were sluggish and his eyes were becoming hazy.
Hal began to tip, his body unable to support itself so before he made impact Tom quickly but carefully settled Ben's head in Matt's lap then hurried forward and wrapped his arms around Hal, carefully lowering him until his head was resting in his lap.
Tears streamed down his face as the reality finally set in. Hal was back. This was really his son.
There would be struggles though, that was unavoidable, his whole family had been through so much; first Ben had been taken this his wife had died and finally Hal had been taken from them twice and imprisoned in his own body as a malignant presence assumed control of his body. But Hal wouldn't be alone, his family and friends would be there for him, helping him overcome the emotions and memories that would no doubt cloud his fragile mind but they wouldn't let him give in to those dark thoughts, they would help him create new memories.
Hal looked up into his father's eyes, his eyes beginning to close from the utter exhaustion that he was feeling. He tried to fight the feeling, he didn't want to close his eyes because he was afraid that if he did the doppelganger would take control again, he had just been freed, he couldn't allow that monster to escape back into the world again.
No longer able to fight the urge, Hal's eyes closed and he basked in the safety he felt in his father's arms.
A/N: I really hope you enjoyed this chapter, I had been stressing and rewriting this one for a while. Hopefully I didn't let you guys down. Please review!