Author's Note: Almost at the end! Though I do think there needs to be more Becket Brothers in this fic, so I've actually decided to add at least one more chapter in addition to the one I've already planned before the story ends. Anyway, in this chapter, I totally create some more make-believe science, side stories, back stories...yadda, yadda, yadda. Just warning y'all!
Shoutout: To Linzerj, the extra insert of Mako and Pentecost's Drift connection is for you! Initially I was only going to mention them again in passing, but since you asked the question, I figured eh, why not? Hahaha.
By the way, welcome aboard to all the new followers for this fic! Hope you all enjoy, and thanks for the support!
Perhaps in an earlier generation, in a time before Drifting was possible and the existence of Jaegers, Raleigh might have been considered crazy, maybe even committed to an institution on the grounds that he was hearing the voice of his dead brother in his head. Anyone who didn't know the context might even consider him a little unhinged now, not that it would ever bother the blonde. He had his brother back, and that's all that mattered.
"You should see this place, Yance," Raleigh thought to his brother, sitting down on one of the many suspended walkway bridges, letting his legs dangle freely and his arms leaning against a rail, all the while happily munching away on a sandwich. "They've got the whole operation going on underground."
He smiles when he hears his brother chuckle in his mind. I'll take a look at your memories next time you come to visit me, kid.
"Sounds good to me, bro."
The sound of a man clearing his throat behind Raleigh causes the blonde to turn and look over his shoulder to see Dr. Geiszler. Raleigh smiled.
"Hey, Doc!" he said. "What's up?"
The doctor flashed him one of his trademark grins, but Raleigh wasn't all that worried. People who didn't know him well or hadn't worked with him during the Kaiju War were probably the only ones who actually thought he was legitimately crazy. The rest of the world knew the man for who he really was—a genius.
"We've had a breakthrough, gentlemen!" Dr. Geiszler said happily.
He was addressing both Beckets, Raleigh realized with slight amusement. Dr. Geiszler always seemed to forget that even though Raleigh was able to communicate back and forth with Yancy, his older brother couldn't hear or see things going on from Raleigh's perspective directly; not unless he said something or if he allowed his brother to sift through his memories upon connecting to the Drift.
"Okay, so maybe he's a little crazy," Raleigh thought.
Hm? What? Raleigh heard his brother ask with amusement. You talking about the Doc?
The younger Becket's lips twitched slightly upward. "Yeah."
Hah! What's he saying?
"Just something about a breakthrough in the lab. Said he wants to tell us personally, but the truth is Gottlieb probably kicked him out so he doesn't mess up whatever it is they've got going in there."
Oh, too true! You're probably right. That's too funny, man. And he's telling 'us'?
Raleigh resisted the urge to snort out loud. "Yeah. Either he always forgets or for some reason he thinks that when he says something to me, you can automatically hear it without me telling you what's going on."
The younger Becket could almost see his brother shaking his head from his tone. Well we can't all be perfect now, can we? He's a super intelligent mad scientist. Let's cut him some slack.
Raleigh couldn't help but grin. "Wasn't even trying to be hard on him, bro."
Yeah, that wouldn't be fair, would it? It'd be like Neil in the Academy lunchroom all over again.
"What...? Oh! Oh, man! Neil Reisner? Dude! Totally forgot about him!"
His brother laughed. Seriously? How could you forget? You were the one who—
Dr. Geiszler's fingers snapping in his face interrupted Raleigh and his brother's inner dialogue and brought the younger Becket back to reality. "Um, hello? Earth to Becket! You listening there?"
Raleigh shook his head and smiled. "Ah, sorry, Doc. Got a little distracted."
He looked off to the side for a moment to speak to his brother over their link. "Hey bro, I've got to pay attention to Doc for a bit. Another time, yeah?"
His brother's laughter filled his thoughts. Yeah kid, no worries. We'll revisit your finest moments from your Academy days later.
"Totally, man. Sounds like a plan."
The doctor looked at Raleigh for a moment in awe. "Man that's got to be so cool."
Raleigh's eyes shifted back onto the doctor and he raised an eyebrow. "Pardon?"
"You were talking to your brother just now, weren't you?" said Dr. Geiszler. "It's got to be awesome having a telepathic connection with someone who can actually speak your language. When I was connected with the Kaiju, all I got was a lot of growls and roars. The only real useful things I got from them at the time were the images."
Raleigh laughed. "Yeah, that must not have been pleasant. And you're right, it is nice."
"Well, then this is where I say that the news I've got to tell you is good news!" said Dr. Geiszler. "Hermann and I have just perfected something in the lab, and he's testing things out on Miss Mako right now as we speak!"
"Testing something on Mako?" Raleigh asked with a slight frown. "What exactly are you guys testing?"
"Follow me!" Dr. Geiszler said excitedly. "I'll fill you in on the details along the way!"
Raleigh felt his older brother probing his mind gently as he walked after the doctor. Hey, Rals, what is it? Is everything okay? I'm sensing a little tension from your end over here.
"Sorry about that, Yance..." Raleigh said to his brother with an apologetic tone. "Just give me a few minutes and I'll let you know what's going on, okay? Hang tight."
"So Hermann tells me you seem to have some idea on what we were working on," said Dr. Geiszler. "Well, he said you guessed, but turns out you pretty much had the right idea."
"Sorry, Doc," Raleigh said, shaking his head. "I'm not sure I know what you're talking about."
"You don't?" Dr. Geiszler said, looking at Raleigh with a questioning glance. "I thought you and Hermann discussed the topic of clones."
This caused the blonde to stop in his tracks. "Whoa, Doc. Now that you mention it, yeah, I vaguely remember having maybe sort of that kind of conversation, but I was really just throwing out an extreme case scenario. I wasn't actually saying I believe it. You're not trying to tell me something like that's actually true, are you?"
There was an amused glint in Dr. Geiszler's eyes when he answered. "Am I?"
Raleigh's jaw dropped slightly, involuntarily. "How...?"
"We've learned many interesting things about the human brain in the past year or so," Dr. Geiszler said as the two resumed their walk. "With the help of the late marshal and Miss Mako Mori, Hermann and I were able to learn a great many things about death, life, and the answer to effective cloning."
"Effective cloning, Doc?" Raleigh asked.
"Yes," said Dr. Geiszler.
Raleigh frowned. "What do you mean by that?"
"Well," said Dr. Geiszler. "Turns out, there's a reason why clones don't last much longer than a few number of years, and apparently it has less to do with the length of telomeres—though that's still a pretty important factor—and more to do with what we've recently learned about Remnants and how they sort of 'power' the human body."
The doctor stopped in front of a door, punched in a string on numbers on a keypad, and entered into the next room when the doors slid open. Raleigh followed close behind.
"Telomeres?" Raleigh asked. "Doc...I'm not sure I follow."
"Oh for goodness sake, Newt!" Gottlieb groaned from where he was seated in front of a computer system. "Are you confusing the man yet again with your spotty explanations?"
"Hardly!" Dr. Geiszler scoffed. "I was just about to explain—"
Gottlieb sighed and rubbed a pair of fingers against his temple. "Forget it, Newt. I'll take over from here. I've calibrated the controls...Miss Mako and the marshal's host are secured. All that's needed is for someone to start the engine and a pair of watchful eyes. Surely you can do that without straying from the plan, correct?"
"Fine, fine!" Dr. Geiszler muttered, trading spaces with Gottlieb. "Geez. You make one risky bet and suddenly no one appreciates creative improvisation."
"Despite how you interpret the intentions behind my lectures and reprimands, Newt, I assure you it's all because I care," said Gottlieb. "I'd much rather have you alive and well, my good friend."
"Aw, was that not a whole load of sentiment just now?" Dr. Geiszler asked, looking genuinely moved. "Hermann! I didn't know you had it in you! I'm touched!"
"Heaven help me," Gottlieb groaned. "Newt! Don't make me regret my words!"
"All right, all right! Relax, Hermie!" Dr. Geiszler laughed as he set to work on the controls. "
Gottlieb frowned. "Did you just call me Hermie?"
"Has a nice little ring to it, doesn't it?" Dr. Geiszler said with a grin.
Gottlieb sighed and rubbed his fingers on the bridge of his nose. "Oh, for the love of it...I'll deal with you later."
"Whatever you say, Herms!"
"Ignore him," Gottlieb said, turning to give Raleigh a pointed look.
The younger Becket wiped the smirk off his face right away. Gottlieb let out another sigh.
"Right...where were we..."
"We were talking about clones?" Raleigh said with a slight shrug.
Gottlieb nodded. "Ah, yes, that."
"The doc was saying something about Remnants and some T-word...I couldn't follow," said Raleigh. "Honestly it all sounded really kind of out there to me. Though, then again, I guess it shouldn't, given what you guys have taught me from what you found out about the Drift..."
"Yes, well I do quite understand your feeling overwhelmed, all the same," said Gottlieb. "These are not exactly easy concepts. Let's start with telomeres."
"Telomeres!" Raleigh said. "Yeah, that was it. That's the word he used."
"Mmhmm, thought as much," Gottlieb said with a smile. "To put it simply, telomeres were thought to be an important in predicting a clone's expected lifespan. We've discovered, thanks to what we now know about the Drift, that there's an even bigger component to the whole process that can actually prolong the life expectancy of a cloned body. It turns out, the one thing missing from a clone is its core content. Sure a clone can eat, sleep, and live day-to-day life just fine. However, there is one major thing that it lacks, and it is its own spirit. Without it, clones are no better than robots who learn how to survive by mimicking what it sees around it."
"Is that where the whole thing about Remnants comes in?" Raleigh asked.
"Precisely!" said Gottlieb. "Very good, Mister Becket! I'm beginning to wonder why you never invested your energies in the sciences."
Raleigh gave a sheepish smile and shrugged. "I was never really one for the textbooks, sir."
Gottlieb chuckled. "Fair enough."
"So how does the concept of Remnants come into play here?" Raleigh asked.
"You remember our conversation regarding them, yes, Mister Becket?" asked Gottlieb.
Raleigh nodded. He did.
"Well," said Gottlieb. "If you recall, I had told you that each time a person connects to the Drift, a piece of their spirit gets chipped off and stored within the Jaeger. At the time, we had not yet discovered that there is indeed a way to transfer the Remnant. Since a person's soul isn't exactly equivalent to a piece of computerized data, we had not thought such a process would be possible."
Raleigh's eyes widened. "Are you saying..."
"Yes," Gottlieb said with a nod. "We think we may have discovered a way to transfer Remnants stored in the Drift from one vessel to another via the Jaeger neural handshake process."
The blonde stared at the scientist in awe. "Unreal..."
"Indeed," said Gottlieb. "And of course, like with any scientific technology, the whole process does not come without some risks."
Raleigh frowned. "Right, I guess I should have suspected as much. What kind of risks are we talking here?"
"We haven't been able to confirm for certain," said Gottlieb. "But Newt and I have theorized...that since Remnants are not simply a piece of data, we do not think a copy is possible."
The older man waited a minute to allow for this piece of information to sink in. Raleigh found himself needing to swallow to rid himself of the sensation that a lump was forming in his throat.
"So...if I'm understanding this right," said Raleigh. "You're telling me that once you move the Remnant out of the Drift...there's a chance of losing it?"
"Forever. That is correct," Gottlieb confirmed solemnly with a nod. "If the transfer is successful, then the person's spirit will once again be trapped in a human vessel. This is where the concept of telomeres becomes especially important."
"And how's that?" Raleigh asked.
"For example, the marshal," said Gottlieb. "Newt and I were able to clone a new body for the late marshal from his stem cells."
"Technology is much better and much more powerful today than it's ever been," said Gottlieb. "But even now we still have our limitations. There are trade-offs. Stem cell preservation techniques are better today than they were in the past, and we were able to successfully clone the marshal with a great deal of patience, and taking the better part of the past year and a half, give or take a few days. However, it is highly likely that whatever diseases he was suffering from before, he may very well suffer again in this life."
"So it's a copy of the same body, in a sense, these clones," said Raleigh. "And not exactly a brand new one."
"Correct," Gottlieb said, nodding.
"So you guys haven't really discovered the secret to immortality."
"Well, again, the answer to something like that is both yes and no," said Gottlieb.
"What do you mean?" Raleigh asked.
"This is where it gets a tad bit complicated," said Gottlieb. "Suppose someone with a lot of money was able to preserve stem cells from when they were a certain age, say, in their early thirties. So long as they have the supply and so long as preservation techniques hold—so far we are now able to preserve stem cells for roughly about ten years—then given that the transfer process goes well and further given that the individual has a piece of themselves stored in the Drift, then it is possible for them to go back to that preserved age, over and over again."
"So when they run out of the supply..."
"Ah, and that's the catch, if there ever was one now, isn't there?" said Gottlieb. "At the same time, true immortality, in a sense, is possible, but the alternative can be a lonely existence."
"You're referring to the Drift," said Raleigh.
"Right again, Mister Becket," Gottlieb said with a nod. "One can always exist in the Drift, as far as we know, but say something were to happen to you, Mister Becket. What then? One can only guess. Without one living being to channel the memories, no one else can have access to them. We don't know if spirits can mingle with one another in the Drift if both physical hosts have moved on, and so on."
"And as far as you know," said Raleigh. "The spirit doesn't exactly move on until the physical body its trapped in expires, or something like that, right?"
"Exactly," said Gottlieb. "The merciful thing then in the case of yourself and your brother would be to terminate the Jaeger."
"If there was still someone around to know that we were trapped in there," the blonde said wryly.
"Yes," Gottlieb nods. "Though perhaps something like that can be addressed as a clause in a will, if one had the foresight to do so, as you now do."
"Wow..." Raleigh said, rubbing the back of his neck.
Gottlieb then took a moment to return his attention to Dr. Geiszler. "Newt? Status on progress?"
"Uh...transfer process was initiated only a few minutes ago," said the doctor. "Everything looks stable, but it's going to take time. I don't think we'll really be able to tell the results until it's all been completed."
"All right, keep a close eye on it," said Gottlieb. "Interrupt me if you need a hand."
"Will do, thanks!"
Gottlieb turned his attention back on Raleigh. "Now let's see, what else..."
"Actually, before that," said Raleigh. "Can I ask you something, sir?"
"Yes, of course," said Gottlieb. "What's on your mind?"
"Was Mako ready and willing to do this first?" Raleigh asked. "I mean, this is a big deal..."
"It is," Gottlieb agreed. "But Miss Mako insisted on being the first subject to the experiment. According to her, Marshal Pentecost also agreed. Besides, let's think about this logically, shall we? Who else would have been the better candidate to start it?"
"I...I don't know," Raleigh shrugged one shoulder. "Me and Yancy?"
"Mister Becket, let's take a look at the facts," said Gottlieb. "It was out of kind consideration that you and your brother were not asked to be subject to this experiment first. Only three individuals from two and a half remaining teams of Jaegers were left alive after the end of the great Kaiju War. Only one of them was able to discover somewhat early on and uncovered amazing secrets mankind had yet to learn about the Drift. That was Miss Mako. She has been able to keep in close contact with the late marshal via the Drift for a little over a year. You and your brother have only been reunited for significantly less than that. And the third pilot..."
"Herc Hansen..." Raleigh said, very softly. "I take it he has absolute no idea any of this is going on...?"
"None whatsoever," Gottlieb confirmed. "Given his most recent mental assessment we have on file, that is probably for the best until we can say that beyond a shadow of a doubt, this will work."
"But still..." said Raleigh. "If it turns out this doesn't work...that's a huge price to pay. I already lost Yancy once...I can't imagine having to go through all that again."
"Well, Miss Mako is indeed her father's daughter," said Gottlieb. "In her words, these last couple of years have been such a huge blessing, more than she could have ever asked for. And she also realizes, we do indeed have to start somewhere. Besides, you heard what Newt said; she's already in the middle of the process. There is no way of turning back. Now the only thing we can do is sit here, wait, and hope for the best."
"Say it works," said Raleigh. "Will my brother and I be next?"
"That depends on the two of you," said Gottlieb. "And whether or not you two will be willing to take that risk. Even if this first transfer goes through successfully, that still doesn't necessarily ensure that the process is completely foolproof. Hiccups can still occur here and there where we least expect."
"Well, it's not like you all have a lot of subjects for trial and error either," said Raleigh. "What about Herc? Say Mako's and mine both work out. Will someone call him?"
"In due time, that's the plan, Mister Becket," said Gottlieb. "But let's just focus on the present for now, shall we?"
"Yeah, you're right, sorry," Raleigh said, shaking his head. "I'm getting too ahead of myself."
"That's quite all right," said Gottlieb. "Now, there is one more thing that I would like to mention."
"Yes? What is it?" asked Raleigh.
"If the current transfer proves successful," said Gottlieb. "And right now that is a huge 'if'...Newt and I have a couple other questions we need to find answers to."
"All right," said Raleigh. "Such as?"
"Well, life expectancy, for one," said Gottlieb. "If our theory is correct and without error, then technically Marshal Pentecost should be able to live out the rest of his life, up until when he should have, had the Kaiju War not happened and hopefully, disease aside."
"Okay..." said Raleigh. "And the other question?"
"Comes more in multiple parts," said Gottlieb. "All regarding a person's spirit. In its new host, does it grow? Or does it remain the size of the shard that was broken off and kept preserved by the Drift? And if the Remnant does grow in size, then is it strong enough and will there be enough of it to allow a person to enter the Drift again, and possibly have another piece of their soul taken and preserved again within the Drift, thus repeating the usual process?"
"Whoa, you're right," said Raleigh. "That is a lot of important aspects to consider, if it turns out this whole transfer thing turns out all right."
"Right well, that's all I have for you right now, Mister Becket," said Gottlieb. "Now why don't you and I go over and join Newt and see how our little experiment is progressing along, shall we?"
"Yeah, all right," Raleigh said with a nod.
The pair walked over to where Dr. Geiszler was, busy taking notes and monitoring all the little screens and data flickering on his dashboard. Gottlieb motioned for Raleigh to go into a small side-room.
"The observation room is in there, Mister Becket," said Gottlieb. "You'll have a better vantage point and be able to see what's going on with the marshal and Miss Mako. With luck, you'll be a witness to a happy reunion. There will be a chair in there for you. Feel free to have a seat."
"Okay," said Raleigh.
"Now, just to warn you," said Gottlieb. "Miss Mako and the marshal's clone are going to appear as if they are asleep, but they are not. You know how it is when entering a deeper layer of the Drift."
Raleigh nodded. "Yeah, I know. Everything outside stops."
"Good," said Gottlieb. "As long as you know."
Raleigh nodded again before entering the adjoining room that Gottlieb had pointed to. Sure enough, as the man had said, there was a chair and Raleigh walked up to it and went ahead and seated himself. Meanwhile, Gottlieb took his place in a chair beside Dr. Geiszler.
"How's it going, Newt?" Gottlieb asked.
"Going well so far," said Dr. Geiszler. "They both stable. It's all up to them now, really. She has to manage to sync with the clone's mind, and somehow either has to guide the marshal in, or he needs to figure out how to do so for himself."
"Well, for the sake of our former soldiers, I hope this works," Gottlieb sighed.
"Yeah..." Dr. Geiszler said, his expression set in rare seriousness. "Me too."
In the observation room, Raleigh looked at what was before him with intense fascination. There before him, on the other side of the glass barrier that separated him from the ongoing trial was Mako and the clone of Marshal Pentecost, side-by-side. They were both fully clothed and on separate bedding. Each had, attached to their heads, a version of the Pons system that looked different from the ones Raleigh was used to from operating a Jaeger, but he knew their functions were still the same. At the moment, both Pons systems were lit up and gave off a blue glow. Both Mako and the clone appeared to be sleeping, just as Gottlieb said they would. Raleigh leaned forward in his chair, clasping his hands together and worrying one of his thumbs with his teeth.
What is it, Rals? What's wrong?
Raleigh sat up straight and let out a huge breath of air; he had, for a moment, completely forgotten about his brother. He absently ran a hand through his hair as he responded.
"Sorry about that, Yance. I was just told a whole lot of things and have been trying to really take it all in."
Yeah, I know kid. I gathered bits and pieces when you weren't filtering your thoughts.
"Still, it was my bad."
So...! It looks like they think they might have found a way to get me from here to back out there?
"Yeah, well..." Raleigh paused for a second. "Well, I don't know. They're not completely sure."
Well with any beta project there always comes a certain percentage of risk, isn't there?
"Yeah, I get that, but..." Raleigh sighed and leaned forward once more in his seat, rubbing at his face with his hands. "But say in the worst-case scenario, this doesn't work. Shit hits the fan and Mako loses Pentecost forever...what do we do? Do we make a play?"
Then that will depend, I guess.
On whether or not you're willing to take that risk.
"You're putting this on me?! Yancy! I don't think I can handle the thought of losing you again. You're all the family I've got!"
Hey, hey...relax, kid. I'm just saying, as much as I like the idea of the possibility that I could be breathing air in my lungs again, I don't want to make things too hard on you. This isn't me putting you on the spot to make a decision; this is me saying I'm down for taking the risks only so long as you are. I'll understand if when push comes to shove, you decide that you can't go through with it.
"Yancy...I'm not trying to deny you a chance at a normal life here..."
And I know you're not, Rals. His brother's voice gently spoke in Raleigh's mind. Trust me, kid. I'll be supporting your decision either way. How long would the process take, anyway?
"Shit, I don't know...I forgot to ask," thought Raleigh. "I know that Gottlieb mentioned something about it taking a little over a year to successfully create the marshal's clone..."
So it would probably take that same amount of time, give or take.
That's a long time...
The brothers fell silent for a few moments. Raleigh blankly continued to watch the transfer process happening on the other side of the glass barrier and there was only stillness in his thoughts.
Finally, Raleigh sighed. "Yancy..."
"Let's think about it, okay?"
"Yancy, I mean it," Raleigh thought. "My reaction earlier was too hasty...and selfish."
There's nothing wrong with being careful.
Let's just focus on the here and now, okay, kid? We don't even know if this is going to work yet. Just keep me posted on what happens. If things turn out all right, we'll talk about it then. Fair enough?
"Yeah..." Raleigh thought as he let out a deep breath of air. "Yeah, okay. That's fair."
Meanwhile, Mako had found her father in the Drift. It hadn't taken her long to find him; she had practically taken off in the direction where she felt his pull the strongest. She was face-to-face with her father in seconds.
"Father!" she cried; they had only ever dropped formalities when in private.
"Mako," said Marshal Pentecost. "Is it time?"
"Yes!" said Mako. "I have to guide you back home."
The marshal frowned. "I understand, but did they explain how this was going to work?"
Mako shook her head. "It's only a guess, Father, but Doctor Geiszler said it might be helpful to try and think of it as coming back from chasing rabbits."
Pentecost took only a minute to process this. "Okay. Mako, I think I understand."
Mako frowned. "You do?"
"Yes," Pentecost said with a nod. "Mako, did you get a chance to see what I looked like before you went under?"
She gave him a curt nod. "Yes, I did."
"Good," said Pentecost. "And did you also take note of your surroundings before entering the Drift?"
"Of course I did, Father," Mako said with a tiny smile, saying the next part in Japanese. "What do you take me for? I'm your daughter."
The marshal chuckled. "Happy to hear all my lectures were well-received."
"Very," Mako agreed. "Shall I show you now, Father?"
"Yes, Mako," said Pentecost. "Please."
During the Kaiju War, Mako hadn't understood how to control the flow of memories, but with Gottlieb and Dr. Geiszler's assistance, she had learned. It was through those techniques that she was able to show her father what he needed to see without any negative side effects. She felt herself smile upon hearing her father's amused laugh.
"God...they really got that right, didn't they?" Pentecost said. "Looks just like me."
"It is you," Mako said, before switching to Japanese once more. "Now hurry back to me, Papa."
Her father responded in kind. "Of course."
A sudden burst of excited shouting came from the control room where the doctor and Gottlieb were and captured Raleigh's instant attention. He got up and walked to the open doorway and poked his head through.
"Doc?" he said. "What's going on?"
The doctor only looked over his shoulder for a split second and gave the blonde a wide grin before returning his full attention to the monitors in front of him. "Good news, kid! We think it might have worked!"
Raleigh gripped the door's frame tightly and he felt his pulse quicken. "You're sure? How do you know?"
"Well, technically we don't," Dr. Geiszler admitted somewhat sheepishly. "But if we can take the readings we're getting right now as a positive indicator, then it's very well possible we'll be seeing the clone wake up as the marshal soon."
"What are the readings telling you?" Raleigh asked.
"Honestly, Newt, must you always skip all the essential details when you're explaining something?" Gottlieb scolded. "We're not all Ghost-Drifting with you."
Gottlieb then turned to Raleigh and gave the blonde an apologetic smile. "Please forgive my scatterbrained colleague, Mister Becket. What he just omitted in telling you is that it appears Miss Mako is showing signs that she is trying to wake herself."
"And she'd only do that if she thought the mission was accomplished, I'm assuming?" asked Raleigh.
"Correct, Mister Becket," said Gottlieb. "They should be waking soon."
"All right then," said Raleigh. "I'm going to go take a look."
The blonde walked back into the observation room and went straight to the glass barrier. He watched with heightened anticipation. A small part of his mind could feel that his brother was getting a little jittery too.
"I know, Yance...I hear you. They're not up yet though."
I haven't said a word.
"You didn't have to."
On the other side of the glass, Raleigh noticed Mako stir, which made him stand up a bit straighter. A few minutes later she finally opened her eyes, but to Raleigh those minutes had felt like an eternity. She slowly reached up for the Pons unit attached to her head and pulled it off of herself. Then, as if she sensed Raleigh's presence, she turned and looked to her left and for a minute Raleigh wondered if the glass he was looking through was a one-way mirror. He raised a hand up slowly in greeting, just to test his theory. It turned out the glass wasn't one-sided after all; Mako raised a hand in response and gave Raleigh a small smile. Her attention, however, became quickly diverted upon hearing the sounds of movement coming from the bed beside hers.
It was a moment Raleigh was sure neither of them were going to forget, although for very different reasons. It was only when the marshal's clone said something to Mako that Raleigh realized he didn't have an audio feed and wasn't going to be able to hear anything happening on the other side of the glass. He didn't need to though; Mako's outward reaction was everything he needed to know what the results were of the transfer experiment. One minute her face showed confusion and disbelief, and in the next minute her eyes were filled with tears and a hand reached up to cover her mouth. Then, the marshal's clone got up from his bed with Mako doing the same, and soon the two were locked in a crushing embrace. That was the moment that told Raleigh all he needed to know—the marshal wasn't just a clone anymore. He was really in there. He was back.
"Oh fuck, Yancy..." Raleigh thought.
What? His brother's voice cut through excitedly. What is it? What's going on? Did it work, man? Is everyone all right?
Raleigh answered after he swallowed the lump that had formed in his throat. "Yeah...yeah bro. They did it. It worked."
"Yeah, that's exactly right," Raleigh thought. "Holy shit..."
"We have to do it, Yance."
His brother didn't respond right away at first. Raleigh couldn't blame him; he almost shocked himself with the sudden thought too. When Yancy finally did answer though, Raleigh shared completely in his older brother's surge of excitement. He grinned in amusement because he knew his brother was trying hard not to push him to any kind of decision.
Are you serious? You sure, kid? Didn't you want to think about it some more?
Raleigh shook his head even knowing his older brother couldn't see. "Yeah, I'm sure, bro. Let's do it."
His brother was laughing. Dude...I don't know what else to say.
A warm smile graced the younger Becket's lips. "It's okay, Yance. I know. You don't have to say anything at all."
After a brief pause, he added one more thought. "Love you, brother."
Yancy didn't miss a beat in giving a response. Love you too, kid.
A/N: All right! Hope that was a pleasant read! I had to up the rating on account of language and nothing else, just to be safe, haha.