Hey, this is Bathtub. Not really, but hey.
I decided to finally post this story (which I will definitely regret because I am not finished yet. There will be no constant uploads, but long, long chapters that jump at you once in awhile.
So. I am not a big fan of large Author's Notes or whatever you kids call it these days. But there are a few things to add before I/you/we all can get started. First off: I noticed, after reading many fanfictions out there, that my display of the characters differs from most writers'. I would love your comments on how you see it. (Part of that could be the fact I never saw Wesker as a rapist, which seems to be a common thing).
This takes place after RE5 and it will not, in any way, feature characters or incidents included in RE6. (Nope, no Jake action here.) It will feature a variety of characters and some OCs, though I do not place them in the main-protagonist roles. Pairings are there only if you want to see them- they are not intended by me, though.
Rating will be T, unless somebody thinks differently (I tend to write gore. Lots of it. And disturbing thoughts, so tell me if it should somehow be changed.)
Well yeah. Here goes nothing. (I always feel like releasing an animal into the wild, wild world when publishing a story.)
Your thoughts and comments are highly appreciated, but I mostly hope you enjoy the read.
Part I: The Dead
I. Devil, Puppet, Hypocrite
"My name is Albert Wesker. Several years ago I began to establish a world of compelling perfection, a vision of a world only those who were worthy should have been granted access to. It lies only within the power of a god to choose a path for the feeble humanity infesting this planet. However, as time went by humans of this obnoxious race concluded they had to have rights as well, among all other privileges... in fact, they challenged a superior being like me, trying to preserve their delusional state of peace, bringing war upon the country they saved...
I died. Their self-righteousness burned like a beacon of hell, raining down upon me and etching through my skin, my flesh, my bones, searching for a soul to purify.
It failed miserably."
His eyes seemed to get used to burn due to the constant confrontation with a light shining ever so bright. He sighed softly as the sentiment again washed over him. It was a sight painful to look at for him and even more painful were the memories it brought back.
The parts of his past he liked to repress- for it held no valuable information- were obliterating already. Those were the parts with the feelings, the parts with a person he failed to see in himself anymore.
He felt uncomfortable, but that wasn't the problem at all. It was the fact an emotion found a way to sneak into his body, a way to mess him up and ravage through his rational thinking.
For such a long time he had repressed these signs of humanity slowing his mind down, that now it felt unreal to feel.
Thinking about his situation he only felt indifference, though. The death he had passed through had left him numb and vulnerable to the dreams he hated so much.
When he had woken up, the memories had been even more confusing, crowding so desperately he still didn't know what was indeed a fragment of his past.
Shifting his body sent a shiver down his spine, creeping into his wounded body infested by the restless soul he now had acquired. And there it was again, the insecurity, the reconciliation with the feeling of fear. Like the tangled webs of a spider connected to his innermost nerve centre it spread and feasted on his reaction. Descended from heaven... abandon hope, all ye who live through the most thriven of all dreams.
There was a conscience so much darker, so much deeper than his ruling over his thoughts, impossible for him to grasp or exterminate. He didn't know what it was he sensed, he was at a loss. Every word he tried to apply on the matter, like a piece of a puzzle he didn't know where to put, seemed too flimsy, too frail for the demon in his own body.
Drifting away into another blurry vision, he tried to relax. Only the sedatives helped him regain part of his sanity, now he couldn't even breathe constantly. It was only when the intoxication took over he felt ready to take on the thoughts of his own.
The sedatives took effect only a few moments after the needle punctured his skin, slowly spreading inside him like the quickest disease. First he had started to struggle at this point, for he had always fought against such measures. Now he kept still and quiet, the perfect patient, already blinded by the comfort of sweet oblivion. The hated feeling rose inside him urgently, a call for help alongside all pleasure. The weakness flooded through him like an armageddon storm.
How unfortunate, he thought, coughing, gasping for air, as he silently surrendered. He admitted defeat because there was no other way to ease the pain. Because it felt good to let go.
It feels... how intriguing.
He had not understood at first, his mind numb and vulnerable to a thought ever so soft. But then the memories returned it was easy to deduct... it was back.
It had frightened him to sense the person he had disposed of again; weak, feeling, human. That wasn't how it was supposed to be... by now, he should be a god already, in a world too perfect for creatures other than him.
And then he remembered all of it, every humiliating minute of his fall. The pain, the screaming, the heat and above all, the rage... but what about now, he wondered. Now there was nothing left of this deep ambition, only the slight annoyance regarding the people responsible for it. But it was only a serene emotion, nothing compared to what had been before. It seemed as if the lava had extinguished his feebly burning anger to show him he was nothing.
'No', he thought sneeringly to himself, 'not only I, but my ideals, dreams, ambitions were nothing in the end.' The power of a god, a virus to control the world and a vision of perfection... everything smashed to pieces by overconfident fools. And they weren't even fools worthy of being called equal, they were mere humans.
The woman in red had told him, in her professional, cold voice, she had told him that his revival was a mistake, that he wasn't meant to be alive anymore. And among those words had always lurked the reproach of the scared. 'How could you? What is wrong with you?' and, of course, 'Why do you live?'
Her eyes could never deny her true feelings. The selfish fear and the fearful selfishness... how he grew tired of it after all these years. However, there was sense in her visits.
She explained the past time to him, the time he had skipped and never missed. Three years, she had said, he had been dead for over three years and nothing had changed.
It was obviously a lie, becoming apparent in her changes. Even with his blurry vision and drugged mind he had seen her lack of resolve. The war in the country had left her spineless and feeble. He smirked briefly. A mistake, so early in the new game he was going to play. The woman in red would be his to control again, a servant most appropriate for now. A day would come to be more demanding. At the present time he didn't want to focus on anything, as long as the drugs silenced the voices screaming in his head. For a long time they had kept quiet, he remembered, only to return in this moment of vulnerability.
His body shivered violently as the cold air around him finally reached his exposed skin. During the process of renewal the pain had become unbearable, wormlike sinews had crawled through burnt flesh and what was created was a body similar to the one he lived with all those years. Blood was gushing out of his veins, pouring out onto the table, burning his bruised organs with its warmth. Those hypocrites had filled his body with the liquid fire he despised so much, forced his worn lung to function and his bones to bend and break. A cage of arteries and flesh and gore was now put around him. And then... they dared to interfere with his plans and removed it all, all the strength and power. He remembered the silenced cry of rage and agony which never left his imagination, never being revealed to the world; his pain racking, his mind racing and the life flowing back into him.
He looked the same way, thought the same way, but now he felt... and that changed it all, much to his annoyance.
His mind drowned in the drugs, burying the stroke of hate and anger rising inside of him.
'So close... I was so close to perfection...', he muttered, resting his head on the metal ground he was unable to identify right now.
All there was were the voices and the light burning too bright for this world not worth dying for.
Ada looked at him with mild surprise. All those years on the run, the sleepless nights haunted by this particular monster... and here it was and she was not afraid. Since her deed of treason she had been running from this man and a sudden death seemed too casual for someone like him. A nightmarish fiend like him couldn't just disappear... and she was right again. He had found her, trapped in the Organization's bigger plan. It had been their sick sense of humor to send her to Africa. The heads knew her fears and every little moment of her past she valued turned into a threat in their hands. However, she obeyed.
They gave her life, no matter how deceitful they were. Confidence was no renewable energy in her heart, it was rare since the world had come crashing down. Bioterrorism hadn't died with Wesker, even though the B.S.A.A. seemed to believe so. Their actions got less and less frequent; completely vanishing after an assault on their headquarters left them with a high number of casualties. A reign of terror was inevitable- or so Ada had thought. Instead, all organizations involved had hesitated to launch an assault on the american government. They waited, Ada had realized, waited for an appropriate time and place to cause the most promising effect.
Peace didn't fill their wallets, it didn't pay their rent and of course it did not secure their homes. War was lucrative for the heads and those under their control. War was money.
Wesker moved his lips as if he was trying to say something, but no sound was audible. The treatment he went through wasn't yet finished; it needed him to stay under drug influence the whole time. Ada smiled bitterly. Origin, the serum that they had used for him, was able to heal all injuries it seemed. In her opinion it was a horrible waste to use it on somebody like him. With a vaccine like that they could save the world... if there was anything left to save.
However, the pain during the process of rejuvenation was whether extremely painful or confusing, so that they needed to keep Wesker sedated to the point of unconsciousness. Ada had read something about the so called somnolence, but she had never seen anybody pass out long-ranging. His body was almost complete again, except for the flesh on his arms. His face had been restored some time ago already and Ada still believed it was only to fright her.
The devilish mask of faked expressions still crept her out. His pale features contorted to a grimace of pain, maybe his intoxicated dreams haunted his mind, Ada didn't care right now.
The place he was caught in was a prison cell, temporarily supported with medical equipment. Origin was a new technology, it wasn't entirely safe to use yet.
Ada watched the unconscious man with curiosity, as if the serum could suddenly make his deformed flesh look human. But this wasn't magic, even though she loved to believe it was. Seeing the sinews grow once more like a bloody swollen worm was incredible after all.
She stepped closer, filled with anguish. His presence was like the one of a mischievous animal, it felt like a hazard too horrible to get close to. The devil's eyes were still closed, but as she got closer it appeared as though he was trembling. Ada hesitated for a moment. It was such an unexpected sight, yet it felt familiar.
A long time ago, before all the chaos, terrors and crooked dreams she had been able to look at him like this, feeling no guilt or fear.
'Just the devil and his puppet now', she thought, 'even now.' Wesker was the predator and she was the frightful prey, eyes wide open facing the monster's mocking smile.
Ada touched his cheek with the back of her hand, barely putting pressure on it. His skin was cold and sweaty, as though he had lived through a fever and she could hear his breathing gradually speed up. This man was sick from sedatives and fire and his own thoughts, no longer able to live in the world he had to dominate so badly. A violent shiver ran through his body and he clenched his teeth like an angry animal.
It made things so easy to have his eyes hidden. Ada feared them for there was no life in them, something that hadn't changed over the years. But now they were not to be seen, making his face look even thinner and paler. The cheek bones looked like they were going to pierce through the flesh soon, in their desperate attempt to escape the human cage. The deep shadows under his eyes only proved Ada right: he was sick and weary. That was what she had come for after all. Wesker wasn't supposed to die, only restraining him would be sufficient.
Ada felt no remorse, although she knew of his impending fate. With the virus lost he was of no use, except for experiments on various other diseases. Still, Wesker was a monster, a sociopath. He had made her life become a living hell, sent her through wars of deceit, buried her soul in all the nightmares. She had no choice but to hate him, he was trying so hard to get her to.
And all off a sudden she stared into his panic eyes and there was nothing she could think anymore. Ada stopped existing as a human; she turned into anguish with all her being. It wasn't only the ability to breath that was gone, her lungs stopped functioning, and her heart stopped ticking. But she wasn't a woman to scream or cry; that part of her had died long ago.
It was no act of sanity as she hit him in the face. Her hand hurt and she felt her anger rise, but Wesker didn't seem to care. Instead, he stared at the ceiling, his bloodshot eyes reflecting the dead expression on his face that almost made him look bored. But he wasn't awake, only passing from one sedation's vision to another.
"You're ging to hate this", she stated, trying to get his attention by slowly waving her hand in front of his face. Wesker didn't even blink.
His eyes were grey and snakelike and unfeeling and... 'Ada', he said in a low tone.
Then, for a moment too short to actually remember, he focused her. However, the brief rush of power faded and he shut his wyes again. It left her with a thought, stubborn and unrelenting.
The virus was removed, now offering the vulnerable emotional system to her to make use of. So what if it affected him strongly enough to erase all resistance? Ada knew Origin could not heal one's grossly distorted mind after revitalizing the body, but if the virus was gone, then what would be left of the infested shell?
Watching his bare chest move with the hazy breathing she felt her disgust revert. Emotions blinded her, it was a restriction impossible to accept in her business. Ada needed to see Wesker as an asset, a valuable thing but without any rights.
With a sigh she tried to breath out all of the fear, the rage and all prejudices to keep calm. It took her only an instant. Readying the syringe she felt the sudden urge to stab it right through Weskers so amusingly beating heart to see if it'd even hurt him.
It was no longer an act of emotion as he touched the helpless body to inject another dose of the Origin into his neck, no longer did she care for the pain it would cause him. He flinched, but even if he was awake again, he did not respond.
"Oh, devil, how far you've gone and how far you've fallen yet again", she whispered and then she smiled.
For all the years of frightful hopes he was going to pay. But at first she would be watching it all, to see what death brought to this world. Because every time that human monster returned, it also brought a part of the abyss with him, crossing the border with more than just his own sins.
Almost instantly her thoughts went back to Leon, who was the complete opposite, she hadn't seen him in years, since Spain, that was. But still... she couldn't forget; she'd never. But as sure as she was about her faded feelings, she knew that to return to him was not an option. As long as the Organization existed, there would always be the most likely chance to die a traitor's death. Leon was with the government- once the president and all of his spineless dogs fell, he would too.
Ada sighed, stopping those useless thoughts at once. They did no good; they had never even guided her through a sleepless night.
"I will be back, as soon as it begins. Be ready for this play to commence."
The voices whispered again, a monstrous crowd of faint accusations, displaying the deceitful person they haunted. Or so they said... Wesker did not agree, not at all. But he kept quiet, as long as the pain rested only in the memory, safe and sound. They left a stain on his flawless mind. And it was not before long that they found the weakened spot somebody had damaged before...
'You're but a failure, a leftover', they said, 'You failed and you fell and you hit the ground just as we predicted.'
And they wouldn't stop laughing as a wicked choir of ghosts, silencing his resisting mind. First he had told himself they must have been produced by the sedatives, his last guiding hope in this drowned world, but now he was not so sure- he was a leftover... and he had failed.
A dream long lost, it seemed, a madman's dream. Or so they said...
Ada's words, however, seemed genuine. In her monologue she had said the world was going down because of bioterrorism. A cataclysmic storm of mutated creatures had descended upon America and other countries of the world. Those were good news indeed and Wesker had felt relief parts of his plan had at least caused an impact... at first, that was.
But when the sentiment faded like a mere scratch on the surface, he realized those weren't his ideals. These people trying to make money of it all would never understand the logic behind it. His vision was stained by those good for nothing terrorists, soiled with ignorance.
Wesker did not feel bad for what he had done; he was too cold to even care.
The voices were growing too loud for him to withstand. The silence around him was screaming. He forced himself to concentrate, but his thoughts would always slip away.
'What if it all was nothing but hell, once again', he asked himself and he began to like the sound of it. But it wasn't just hell and he knew. This was the world fueling his anger, the world inhabited by those wicked walking corpses... who were the true undead, he asked himself smugly, they were all dead on the inside anyway.
He had tried to completely ignore the emotions that felt peculiar in his rational mind. They were unwelcome intruders, after all. But then he had noticed it was futile. Other than that, he needed to tame them, control them like an animal wreaking havoc in his body.
Wesker was no man of self-pity or doubts and now he knew that was only the best. The last time he had questioned his sanity, it had led to his fall... and the pain, the flames, the rain of fire. His insides seemed to coil and twist like they had done back then, prising open his torso with the vain tentacles carving mosaics into the human tissue.
He gasped for air and opened his eyes.
'Another...?', he thought in horror, 'how is that even...?' Then the drug caught up with him again. There was something seriously wrong with him. On the one hand a part seemed to be missing, but on the other hand there was too much... too much anger, too much pain, too much power.
So how come it still wasn't enough?
Wesker couldn't place a finger on what was wrong yet, the thought drove him mad. It couldn't be true... he felt ludicrous only considering having a split mind... but it was what he sensed. The different, weak person was speaking through him, breathing the same air, but scheming something else.
It couldn't be real, but the voices proved him wrong. They chuckled and laughed and screamed at him for his ignorance, they twisted and turned and echoed inside his mind. And then they stopped, abruptly.
'No', Wesker realized, 'They listen.'
"Only a few years longer and the world will be destroyed anyway. There's no need to bother with speeding it up. What you need is patience. The end will come soon enough."
It was her voice, the treacherous woman's; telling him stories of the world he was neither allowed to enter nor to leave. In her plastic smile glistened loathing, in each word laid another fear. Wesker knew of her nightmares, of the dark, the hunt and the kill. But his desire to kill her was long gone, wasn't it? She shouldn't hate him anymore, he believed, she should rather try to run.
'What brought you back here, in this deceptive battle you describe?', he asked, not saying a word, 'Was it me? Did they promise you to be the one pulling the trigger this time?'
He tried to focus and give her a smile too arrogant for her to bear, but all he could do was think. The drugs trapped him inside himself, hiding desperately behind bones and flesh and blood.
Wesker wasn't afraid, though. He wanted to kill, to struggle and to feel power fueling his ambition. There was just no way to accomplish that yet and there was no sense in trying to achieve the impossible.
A loud noise indicated that Ada was readying another syringe. That meant another quiet day. Ever since he had started living again he had tried to count the days, but it proved to be difficult... time was passing him in a caustic slow fashion.
Wesker wanted to rest for the moment, quietly agreeing with the shot he received once in awhile. He wasn't afraid, not at all.
It was the day the heads decided to wake Wesker up that Ada found herself wondering if that was worth it. She received a fair amount of money for this little vacation from retirement, but that didn't mean she wasn't risking her life.
She was the emotional connection... or at least the one member of the Organization coming closest to it. But how much sense was there in talking to a person who despised humanity? How could talk actually trigger something not even torture brought up? That was what the file in her hand couldn't tell her. It bumped into her leg with each step, giving her a rhythm to walk to.
There were things she had never wanted to know about Wesker, the treatment he had received before and not responded to was but one of it. Naturally there was nothing pleasant about it. In fact, she had refused to read it all; if she was ordered to convince Wesker of something, it would only harm the operation if she had his past tortures in mind. Even if he wasn't able to read her mind, he would know.
The hallways in the underground parts of the Organization were more or less all looking the same. Like a broad metal tube inserted in a pulsing vein to investigate, she always thought. Walking through these sterile corridors made her feel uneasy. In fact, they were emitting the air of fear- it almost seemed like a shining grave.
As she entered the prison cell her first move was to dense the lights. It was like a ritual for her, the protest against submission. 'First blind the headlights, if you can't stop them from watching', she thought.
The lights flickered for a brief moment, then they surrendered. The atmosphere wasn't quite soothing; still it was a definite improvement.
Ada walked over to the wall opposite of the door. There were a few things placed for her and it almost made her smile to see there was a pistol among it. It wouldn't get her anywhere to threat Wesker. He'd been through far worse.
She took the gun, however, checked the clip and placed it on the shelf again. Instead, she got the syringe with the morphine, the bundle of clothes and the sunglasses and walked over to the operation table. Even though she doubted Wesker would have any problem with talking to her with no clothes on, she somehow didn't like the thought. Actually, she wasn't feeling awkward around naked men, but with him it would be just wrong. Ada didn't bother getting him dressed though, she just put down the clothes on a chair next to the table and sat the glasses on it.
Even with the light dimmed like that, Wesker's eyes were too sensitive to endure it. Hence the sunglasses were a faked token of confidence; the Organization wanted him on their side for awhile, after all. Trying to bribe him was just ridiculous, Ada thought, he'd notice right away.
She clenched her teeth and steadied herself to prepare for the confrontation. The heads had explained that it was probably the best to let her do the introduction back into reality, because she was familiar with the subject.
Indeed she was, but of course she knew she was here to be tested herself. The last years had cost the Organization a huge amount of money and they didn't want to afford her anymore as just a non-operative agent. So she was transferred back. Ada was here because she needed the money and the protection. She was here because she'd be dead in a second otherwise. It wasn't because she wanted to. The hope of a normal future was gone, now that she was back in action. She'd die on the battlefield.
The thought suddenly frightened her. A few years earlier, with her mind safe and sound in confidence, she wouldn't have been bothered. Now, there was only fear and self-preservation. Ada loved to pity herself way too much.
She turned around to face Wesker again. Of course he was still lying on the iron table, his body half-covered with a white blanket. He still looked terrible, she noticed. The sedatives had put too much pressure on him, slowly decaying his body. All the wounds were healed, though- and that was what truly mattered.
Ada placed the syringe on a medical table and stepped closer. The morphine's effects were slowly ceasing. There was a cannula stuck into his crook of the arm, pumping a liquid into the body right now. It was one of the mechanism only authorized personnel could commence, something to stop Origin from causing any further impact and eliminating the sedation completely. It seemed to be only an instant, a blink-of-an-eye-one, but it seemed to extend until it almost tore her apart in anticipation. But when she moved closer, unable to wait for the inevitable any longer, it all began.
The devil opened his eyes.
Chris was too tired to properly read the documents he stared at. Apparently they were case and suspect files, but in the back of his mind was a thought occupying him. His work was important to him; it kept him busy after all. Additionally there were people thinking the same as he did- and they hated all terroristic actions, too. Chris suddenly felt like a hypocrite being here. Since his last mission two months had passed and in that time he hadn't exactly been thinking about how to save the world or even somebody's life. No... since that incident he wasn't thinking anymore. All was affected by emotions he could not deny.
Sheva was dead, his brave partner hat not just gotten out of a bomb attack unscathed... Chris still couldn't understand what had happened and what the hell made him survive. He should be happy, but he wasn't.
Every time he made it through such a disaster, he lost something or someone dear to him. So what price had Jill been, he asked himself, why taking her away?
Chris yawned and laid down the papers on his desk. It was useless trying to work when she was on his mind, completely filling his thoughts.
It had been only a few weeks after the assault that Jill had vanished without a trace all off a sudden. She wouldn't answer her phone or ever open the door at home, so that Chris started to worry soon enough. It wasn't like her, running away without saying a word. So he had begun to search for her, with no success. There was no sign of her anywhere, as if a person by the name of Jill Valentine had never existed.
And now all that was left of her was the memory of their last meeting, when they had talked about the old times they didn't want to talk about.
Chris closed his yes, trying to remember exactly how it had felt like. Savoring the moment now gone hurt, but he was no rational person in this minute.
They had talked and shared so much more information than all the years before. Their fears, their hopes, their dreams... and then they had kissed, eventually, as if all the time before had finally paid off. And it definitely had if that moment was the result. Chris still didn't know how to feel about it. He'd always known, of course, they both agreed with being more than just partners. And then she had left, never returning.
'She hasn't returned yet', Chris reminded himself, 'But she will.'
It infuriated him to see how everything he got was taken away a second later, it annoyed him. With no missions issued at the present time there was no way to lose some pressure, except for the one thing left to do...
Looking at the file before him, Chris felt heavy with memories. With one fingertip he traced the suspect's name as though it could ease his mind. 'Jessica Sherawat' wasn't who he wanted to seek and destroy anymore. But that was what it would lead to eventually; she wasn't exactly a woman to silently surrender.
And in the information Chris had received from an unknown call he couldn't track down laid another hazard. The mutilated voice had told him there was a chance to encounter a 'surprise guest on the stage, making the whole operation even more interesting.'
That wasn't helpful at all, Chris also didn't know if it actually mattered. Of course there'd be people he knew, revealed as fellow traitors when met with Jessica, but that would be nothing new... unless... Chris didn't want to think about any other possible meanings hidden in the message. Due to his overtly paranoia there were shadows of the past chasing him still and he couldn't afford this to get in his way on this mission. It was his superior who had decided to follow the lead of the mysterious person's call, against all odds. Even though everyone knew it was probably a trap of some sort, they had no other chance. They needed success and they needed it now.
Still, Chris owed Jessica a chance to explain and it startled him he had to force himself to accept that. For the last three years, he had found that it all was worth fighting for, but he lacked yet a reason to justify the slaughter. It had never occurred to him he could have indulged to violence and its convincing powers until one suspect had left the interrogation almost dead and beaten up.
The past had numbed him, to protect his unquestionable sanity. Of course it was justified- but he'd never forget the look on Jill's face seeing the suspect. And god, how she had looked at him... with repulsion.
'What if human monsters are not what we should fear?', she had asked him once, 'What if the monstrous humans are?' It was now that he realized she hadn't been talking about herself at all, it was far more difficult then he believed.
However, those in charge of the assaults on the B.S.A.A. and the launch of B.O.W.s were guilty. They deserved to die, that was obvious. And they would get what they deserved. Jessica, though, had helped him... was that enough already to spare her life, if only to explain her true intentions?
Chris got off his chair and left the question behind. There was yet time to clear his head, the mission was planned to start in a few days. Walking through the dark, empty office made him think back to past times he denied himself to remember.
'What if...?' Shaking the thoughts off again, he pushed open the doors, stepping out into the cold, nightly streets. The lights shone too bright not to stare at, their mesmerizing shapes twisting with each blink of the eye. It almost looked as if they were alive, but the only thing moving down on the sidewalk, following Chris' every move was the shadow he cast.
'Only a few minutes, to get the thoughts off my head', he told himself, shivering in the cold. Then he'd be going back, to check on the preparations that the soldiers accompanying him to his mission to Canada had made by now.
'It's nonsense anyway... it's impossible that...'
How wrong he was.