WHAT WHAT WHHAAAT? I'm updating and it hasn't even been...oh shit that's right...(/Q_Q)/ Please R&R
As Jack opened the doors he was met with lush green scenery; In front of him, an old fountain lay overgrown with weeds and vines. Further off in the distance, more overgrowth covered an aging "Monument Island" sign, standing above a locked gate. Outside, Jack thought he could hear the faint sounds of explosions and gunfire.
'Stay safe, Boss.' The young detective gripped his shirt in a fit of anxiety, 'I'll find her and then we'll find you.'
Jack made his way forward to the gate. All of the entrances were sealed and barricaded shut, adorned with warning signs speaking of death for those who ventured further.
"Just my luck. Who would lock anyone up in this place?" Jack asked himself, "Its like a prison."
There was no feasible way past the gates; the way they'd been sealed implied that no one was ever supposed to come through again. Turning his back to his metal obstacle, the young man began to search his surroundings to find another way, but he soon felt a tugging sensation at the back of his waist: The Skyhook!
Jack fastened the tool onto his left arm and directed it towards a hook with a green light. The closer he was to the hook, the stronger the sensation felt.
"No other choice I guess." Jack backed up to the fountain, "Worst case, I just end up flat on my ass."
He sprinted towards the gate, jumping at the last second as hard as he could towards the green hook. Luckily, Jack found himself attached to his target and suspended in the air.
"Wow…" He marveled, "I guess there's a magnet or something in here."
Like a gymnast, Jack brought his legs up and swung them back and forth, building momentum to jump off the hook. Unfortunately, this time, he did lane on his ass.
"Ow!" He winced as he got up, rubbing his aching posterior.
Jack was then faced with a statue of an angel. Like much of the rest of what Jack had seen in Columbia thus far, the statue was ornate and beautifully crafted, the curves in the stone demonstrating movement in an inanimate object. But when Jack looked at the statue he felt…sad.
'Why hide something so beautiful, only to lock it away?' He asked himself.
Then a terrible wave of pain and nausea assaulted him the moment the thought had finished. The detective fell to one knee, clutching his head in agony. But as fast as the pain had wrapped itself around him, Jack soon felt better.
"What the hell was that?" He asked wearily, making his way up the stairs and through the tower doors.
The investigator walked right into a locker room. Inside, money, clothes, pictures, papers, a whole assortment of things lay strewn throughout the room. In the center, another angelic sculpture stood, hand outstretched.
Jack soon found his way out of the room. At his feet, a painted red line flanked by more signs denoting a 12-hour quarantine for those who passed the line sat in front of the door.
"SPECIMEN IS DANGEROUS!" and "DANGER: DO NOT APPROACH THE SPECIMEN!" signs also attempted to ward Jack out and away.
Jack scoffed; he was here for a girl, a human being, someone who was like any other person. To call another human being a "specimen" was terrifying and cruel language.
"What were they doing here?" He asked in shock and awe after he opened the next set of doors.
A machine vomited out sparks from broken wiring and smoking turbines seemed primed to explode, but none of it fazed Jack. He was too focused on the board in front of him.
The board charted the growth of a little girl, from infancy, to adolescence, to teenage years, to young adulthood. Bone scans, height, weight, measurements down to hair length were recorded. The young woman locked up here, the one Jack was supposed to find, was a science project!
Jack felt ill. It simply disgusted him that this had happened. Whoever she was, this woman had probably never seen the world outside this tower. Never felt sand under her feet, the kiss of the morning sun on her head, the wind blowing through her hair, or even the harsh bite of winter at her cheeks. For her entire life, this woman, whoever she was, had been alone.
Jack made his way around the board and saw a larger room that was crackling with electricity and power in front of him. A massive machine seemed to be generating it all. However, it was the sign at the threshold that caught Jack's attention.
"PAST THIS POINT: 72 HOUR QUARANTINE APPROVAL BY CHIEF SCIENTIST LUTECE" the sign read.
"You're wondering aren't you?" A female voice ambushed Jack.
"Ah!" The detective sprang away from Renee, "How did you-"
"Not important, Mr. Harper," She snapped at him, "You have a more important question, do you not?"
Collecting his wits Jack took a deep breath before starting, "You're damn right I do, Lutece! What kinda thing were your aunt and unlce doin' here?" He grabbed at Renee's collar. In his rage, Jack slipped back into a Southern drawl.
His consternation was met by a frown and then a look of shame.
"I-I- I'm sorry, Ms. Lutece," He took his hand away feeling only sorrow for his actions, "I shouldn't have done that."
Then she did something he didn't expect, she wrapped her small hands around his still-clenched fist. If he weren't so embarrassed, Jack might've laughed at the picture.
"No, you're right Jack. You're absolutely correct." He emerald eyes met his blues, "My aunt…she was alone at the time. She needed money, funding for her experiments, which came in the form of her patron, Zachary Hale Comstock. Mr. Comstock helped her achieve things that she'd only dreamed of, but his own demands were twisted as well. He…he used her to make this happen. Imprison this girl. This is where my aunt began to change her mind, where she decided to find your partner."
"Boss…"Jack muttered wistfully. He missed Booker. After his mother had died, Jack began to look for his father, Cornelius Slate, and at the very least, give him the beating he deserved. But that trail had led to Booker DeWitt, who had been trapped at the bottom of a bottle.
At first, it was strictly business, Jack tidied up and got Booker jobs and the older man, in turn, would teach Jack and help him find Slate one day. But the years that they'd spent together turned business into friendship. Booker was Jack's only friend in the world and the same way vice versa.
"Jack," Renee gave his fist a squeeze, bringing him back into the real world, "find her. Right this wrong. Please."
"Ok." He answered solemnly, his eyes closed. Soon, the warmth of her hands was gone and so was she.
Jack picked himself up and walked into the next room. Coils channeled electricity above his head and he could feel his hairs standing on end. He made his way over to a contraption that listed energy siphoning as its main function across three levers. Locked inside the apparatus were three different objects: a teddy bear, a poetry book, and a sheet of paper.
"Huh," Jack said as he pulled the levers on at a time, "Wonder what these do."
Jolts of electricity came down and wrapped themselves around each object, burning them, "Whoa!" Jack exclaimed, edging away from the device.
The detective then made his way into the next hall there were three rooms there.
Jack walked into the first and almost immediately regretted it. He had been in enough morgues to recognize the smell of antiseptic and hints of dead flesh. The room that he had walked into reminded him of that same place. But in the middle of the room was an eerily similar sight: A velvety red chair with arm restraints. The difference was that was no rocket; there was no way out, no escape.
"What the hell are they doing to her?!" He muttered, frustrated that he couldn't do anything.
He made is way out the room and further down the hall. To his left was a darkroom; some underdeveloped photos were strewn around, nothing substantial. However, the right room had a projector playing.
Walking inside, Jack saw a clip playing, "Lockpick attempt #132"
On the screen a young woman knelt down and fidgeted with an intricate lock system for a few seconds before getting up, shaking her head, and walking away.
"Haha, she's got some fire," Jack laughed in spite of himself, recalling his own frustration with certain tasks.
The next clip said "Specimen Decoding Attempt"
The same girl from the previous screen took a look at a puzzle, what looked to be a jumble of random letters before reading the open book next to it and circling a few letters. She then dashed away. The camera angle changed to the girl uncovering a present wrapped under her bed.
"Hmm." Jack noted, "Very resourceful, and smart."
Jack made his way through the doors into yet another room.
'Holy hell...' Jack sighed, 'How many rooms are there?'
Like in the room where he'd met Renee again, Jack found a board. On this one, however, was a graph charting "power" with "specimen age" While there were certainly ups and downs, the trend showed enormous gains in power as the woman got older. In the upper left corner of the board, "FACILITY UNSAFE" etched in big yellow letters marred the graph.
Jack made his way down the stairs, gathering that the large device in front of him was called "The Siphon" it seemed like a large device wrapped in electric energy. Tubes ran around the room and into the machine, odd plates seemed to be absorbing some energy flow from the machine, and signs cautioning danger implied that the specimen was generating the energy.
'Jesus,' Jack thought, 'How is this even possible?'
Making his way around once more, Jack saw an elevator surrounded with signs warning to not touch the "specimen" and of a 168-hour quarantine.
"Like I'll listen to them now." The youth snorted as he walked into the elevator and punched the button.
The ride up was surprisingly and pleasantly short and the doors opened to reveal a looping hallway with closed viewing areas with signs noting whether or not the young lady was present in the room. Jack made his way out and into the hallway. He soon found a display saying "Specimen Location." He hit the button and the light showing "Dressing Room" lit up. The young man could feel the blood flowing into his cheeks.
"Dressing Room." He gulped, "Guess that's where I'll have to go."
He made his way out and onto a wooden catwalk filled with dust and dirt, soon being led back inside the metal hallway. As the doors opened, a red light was slowly flashing "SPECIMENT PRESENT"
Jack took a deep breath and pulled the lever. The windows swung wide, revealing a young woman with an innocent smile looking at a picture of the Eiffel Tower. Her hair was long and black, and tied into a ponytail, but a few stray strands found themselves across her forehead. She wore a white blouse and a long, flowing blue skirt. But the most beautiful thing about her were her eyes, a beautiful, crystal sky-blue.
"Its her…"Jack breathes
She suddenly flinched and dropped the paper, looking at her pinky; it was far shorter than an average pinky and covered with a thimble. It seems she has a paper cut. Picking up the dropped paper and giving it one last gaze, She smiles and dashes out of the room. The windows close and Jack snaps out of his gaze.
The door to his left opens and he sees another locator and activates it. It seems she has gone into the dining room. Following the familiar path of out and then in, Jack again finds himself in the next viewing room, the red light slowly flashing. Again he pulls the lever.
The woman is in a study, it seems. At the back, child-like drawings of some sort of sentinel, the Songbird, Jack recalls, are on the back wall. Directly behind the young lady is a masterful painting of the Eiffel Tower and Paris at night. The woman sighs, and looks dejected as she drops the paper onto the desk. She looks nervous as she grips her thimbled finger. Then she turns around and seemingly grips the middle of the painting and struggles to open it.
"What the-" Jack begins, entirely confused, "My…my God. What…what is this?"
The young woman tears the fabric of reality and beyond her, behind a thin veil, is France. But something is off…odd music plays in the background and a sign advertises something called "La Revance Du Jedi" at a place called "Regent" beyond the street, in the fog, lies the Eiffel Tower. A blaring alarm sound grows louder and louder, some sort of metel behemoth is approaching. It looks like a car, but none that Jack has ever seen. The woman panics, struggling to close the hole she has opened. Just as the car reaches her, she manages to close it. Both she and Jack heave a sigh of relief.
The picture is gone and the glass on the window cracking in places. The woman runs away.
"Whatever that was," Jack murmers, "I hope it has nothing to do with the job at hand."
Jack makes one last way out and up a wooden ramp, still shocked by the events that unfolded moments before. The doors open and he makes his way up a set of metal stairs.
"Booker gone, Lutece shadowing me, and now this…"Jack sighs, "This job's gettin' worse all the time."
Once again, Jack sees that the woman is behind the window. But this time he is scared to pull the lever. He's never even heard about someone like this before and the prospect of facing it again chills him. But he steels himself, reminding himself of his job, and pulls the lever.
This time, the girl is far away, looking out a window of what looks like a very grand library. She is shrouded in light, much like an angel. The door to Jack's left opens and he makes his way through. He moves through one last hallway and is faced with a huge metal door. Both hands on the wheel, Jack turns it open and steps through.
He finds himself on the outside of the statue, the gusts of wind threatening to blow him off the statue and a very, very long way down.
"Holy shit!" Jack can barely hear himself over the air, "I can do this…I can do this." Hugging the literal face of the statue, Jack pushes his way inside. He soon finds himself on a platform in front of yet another door. But as he makes he way to the door, he hears a creaking noise.
"Ah shit." He grumbles before falling, "Aggghhhh!"
Arms flailing, he manages to grab a railing before snapping his legs only to find himself face to face with the woman he was watching a minute ago.
"Erm…" He scrambles to make a friendly face while clinging to the rail, "Hello?"
"AHHHH!" She screams in surprise and throws a book, its spine smashing into his face, the sudden pain makes Jack forget he's clinging onto a rail and he falls to the ground…on his ass.
"OW!" He yells as another books pelts him, "Hey-OW!-Will you jus-OW! I'm trying to- OW! I'm not here to hurt you!" He holds up his hand in defeat as she towers above him, The Principles of Quantum Mechanics by Rosalind Lutece in hand.
"Who are you?" Her piercing blue eyes gaze at him as he struggles to his feet.
"My name is Harper. I'm here with a friend. We've come to get you out of here." He hastily explains, grasping her shoulder to reassure her.
She struggles out from his reach "Get away!" She screams, swinging the book at him.
This time, Jack holds her arm, stopping the blow from landing. She struggles a bit more, trying to hit him. Soon, she's out of breath. Her face settles into a scowl, but then relaxes.
"Are you real?" She whispers her hand grazes his cheek.
Jack is conflicted and confused, not two seconds ago, she was ready to bludgeon him to death with the works of Rosalind Lutece. Now, she's caressing his cheek, and he wants the moment, however brief, to last.
Ok, yes virtually nothing happened this chapter. Its 4AM, and I'm struggling with addiction and a lot of other shit, terribly sorry. I can give you guys a long spiel about whats been happening with me, but you don't really deserve to hear that, unless you want to...which would be odd...but you're all free to PM me.
I get if y'all are disappointed with this chapter, strictly speaking, its more setting up and CD for Jack with a little for Renee. I'm really really sorry that updates come the way they do, but it is what it is. As always thanks for reading/reviewing and feel free to PM me with any questions, comments, or concerns.
-Such Love, Much Writing