Chapter 14: Urkel, Burkle, Boo on Bill
Chapter 14 : Urkel, Burkel, boo on bill
All of those present for the ritual were grinning. “Well we'd like you to meet two new additions to our little family.” Alex said while gesturing to the two independent androids. “The fine gentleman that looks a lot like the other one is Harry II or otherwise known as James, and Dagny, they're androids, Second and first generation of our perfected AI's actually with Harry's brain as the template for James. Again, it's a long story.” The others winced. Story time with Alex was growing in length each time he said that, there was simply too much to sum up without a direct download to your brain.
“Exactly how long were you in there?” Integra asked. To have developed technology to create something like this would take years if not decades of work on the existing tech in place today.
Alex murmured something and a clock appeared over each of them. “Harry was there for the around two hundred and twenty if you discount the time jump and add in the time he put in the sim chamber, Seras was there for a good three centuries and I spent almost five centuries playing chronal hopscotch while asking myself for hints about what I was going to do next. It was fun and I have to say I make a damn fine barbershop quartet if need be. The time turners worked in there along with some other things we fiddled with.”
Those who not actually been with them in the pocket universe had blank looks on their faces, it was quite amusing to see a slack jawed Alucard.
Ignoring their reactions, Alex continued. “Now if you don't mind, Dagny and myself have to go start the Revolution.” He looked at his watch and nodded to himself and both he and Dagny disappeared in a puff of purple smoke.
“What the hell was that about?” Sir Integra yelled, loosing her fabled composure at the sheer oddity of it all, it had been a long time coming since everything Alex seemed to do brought chaos to her life and increased that headache behind her right eye
“Well...” Seras started and then they heard a popping sound and both Alex and Dagny had come back a second puff of purple smoke in the same spots they had left. Alex's first words were, “Well that took forever.”
“Come on Gramps, where is the fabled patience of the legendary Methos now? It didn't take that long, well except for that bit with Disney and Rand but you know how those creative types can be.” Alex sent her the patented-if-he-could glare #32. which made the girl hold her hands up and gesturing to try and ward off the glare and whatever would follow. It was pretty funny to James at least.
“Fine it took two months to get the national patents after you set up the brain trust and set up a family history for your new public face dating back to the open immigration at Staten Island. It could have taken a lot longer to set everything up including the names of non-existent researchers who's family also had to have complete records dating far enough back and then set up a trust to keep the company going from 1970 on. But I am the best after all.” Dagny stated with a smirk forming on the last bit.
“What an ego my daughter has, how could I have gone so wrong in raising her? WAHH!!!!” everybody stepped back from the small rivers coming from Alex's eyes while Harry was fighting the reaction to turn into a busty redhead. He silently cursed his father for planting that into his subconscious before he went into the sim. Even all his efforts at memory filing and occlumency hadn't found the pesky bugger, well not all of it, at least he didn't use his magic to attract cold water anymore. It was no matter though, he'd beat the solution out of Alex once he reached Level Four. If there was one.
Out loud, Harry said something completely different. “Apparently Dad liked to play that part in the Ranma Sim a little too much.” While rolling his eyes at his father's antics and cursing him mentally about that little 'prank'. He loved his father but he had some odd sense of humor some times.
“So again, what was the purple smoke and what is it exactly that you're planning now?”
“Well..... We've got a big 'to do' list. First we need to take care of about four separate problems, The Order of Teraka, the whole wizarding world Voldemort/Dumbledore issue, The whole FREAK chip vampire thing which we all know needs to get gone, and we have to recruit two people to work for us if we want to get more work done since at the moment at least we've lost the most brilliant researcher I've ever seen. That and bring Xanatos industries to public as more than just a 'thinktank” He tapped his index finger on his chin and started thinking again, “That and try to find and start monitoring the Sailor Scouts. The list goes on but I digress, we'll get ready. The hardest part was getting Disney to sign that damn contract. If we hadn't agreed to cryosleep under “It's a small world” It wouldn't have gone through. Speaking of which, we'd better wake him up after the millennium. A deal is a deal is a deal after all. All right back to work, except for Harry of course, I've got something for him to do.”
The group watched Alex concentrate and his left hand started glowing with a vibrant electric blue light, it coalesced into a ball and slowly turned into a blue apple of all things. “All right son, I want you to eat this and the go to those locations I told you about. I don't want to see you until they finish with you. I can honestly say I can't think of a more pleasant way to go.” Alex paused in thought. “Limit yourself to a tenth of your reserves all of your magic save for what you need to get around and perform a cleaning charm or twenty.”
Harry quickly ate the blue apple which sparked and arced every time he took a bite. When his adoptive son finished Alex felt the flicker that indicated that Harry was now a pre-immortal.
The reason Alex was doing this was a tad complicated. They had tested to see if Alex was fertile and he was which went against the whole Immortality schtick in the Highlander series. It apparently seemed like Mideons could only have children if both people agreed to it in a blood ritual beforehand. They had opted to not have children since the half mideons were more than a bit slightly mad in the first place and any child of theirs would be unique to say the least. So they stuck with adoption and hoped for bunches of grandbabies, Harry would more than likely be fertile since Alex was, his own magical core seemed to counter the effects of the immortal quickening that kept his seed inert for lack of a better term. They wanted their son to have a chance at immortality and the quickening was a major boost to wandless magic anyways.
Harry nodded and apparated to the closest location. He would make his father and Master Happosai proud of him, and die in the effort. Well, not permanently but he would die.
Alex explained a little further and told them to wait at least a week for them to get the needed information on the Millennium group and the different cells operating that were run by the remnants of Hitler's; Grindelwald's puppet, mystics. They'd deal with that whole mess that he knew Dumbledore wasn't even aware of. Blithering idiot that he was.
After what needed to be explained was the married couple went to their sort of recently acquired ranch in Montana. Alex and Dagny had purchased it and he had placed it under a modified Fidelus then and there. It was well hidden. Once they reached the property he told her it's location and the name of the place which as just Home and it shimmered into view for her.
“Hon, I hate to say it but Home is kind of a dump.” Seras commented.
Alex grinned and focused his magic for a rather strong 'Reparo' it was enough. He took out the dome he'd put in his Stuffspace and expanded it to it's full size. It was bigger than three warehouses and the interior actually had more space than Rhode Island, which isn't saying much, a Magically expanded studio apartment could be half the size of Rhode Island if enough people were doing the casting.
Alex wanted to test the spiderman/guyver units and see if it could limit him like the bracers were. He needed to know if the advanced master class armor would be enough if not he'd have to have multiple sets of limiters and it would be a bitch to engage and disengage them should the need truly arise. If it worked then it should also cloak his aura and mask his scent which didn't smell like a normal human or wizard anymore either.
Before he did that though he went to the drone room where the different types of the orbs they had developed were. They were to be used for a multitude of purposes such as keeping tabs on the higher ranked watchers and known potential slayers as well as to investigate and seek out both the Order of Teraka and the Millennium group, those behind the FREAK vampires. A few would be energized with 'dark' energy and sent to the Juuban district to start keeping tabs on the Sailor scouts. It helped that Ares had given him a book titled. “How to make a Youma in six easy steps”. The energy alone should be enough to draw them out to investigate. It wouldn't be hard to track their auras and magical signatures after that even if they did transform back to normal like he could if he did after powering up. A few more of the balls would be keeping tabs on the darker aspects of NID who can't keep their noses out of anything. They needed to be watched while he tried to change the world.
He wondered if he was in the right, the actions they would be going through in the next couple of weeks would greatly change not only the global economy, but the climate and possibly how humans interact with one another. As it stood he had to start working on another problem with the global warming issue, the frogs were already starting to go. A few degrees here and there and some extra cloud cover was already mucking with the world. If it wasn't happened at least the northern hemisphere would be struck by a particularly nasty cold snap. Well according to the majority of Dagny's projections.
He was brought out of his musings when the last of the orbs drifted off to do their respective duties when his wife asked him a question. “Sweetie, exactly where did you send Harry and what was with the Apple?” Seras asked with a bit of steel behind her voice, she had an idea but she needed to know what Alex sent off their son to do.
He smiled a little smile. “He had a list of every known Succubus based brothel that the Watchers and Wolfram and Hart had on file. The Apple was a condensed quickening. Hopefully he'll have a lot of fun and leave a lot of happy demonesses in his wake on his path to his first death, after which he will rise as an Immortal, well more of one then he is already. Hell, he just might get to the fourth level if there is one for humans.”
His wife just looked at him with one of his own patented glares which read 'what have you been smoking?'
Alex shrugged. “Come on, you get that aggression out by helping test the master class armor I designed for Harry and me. You get to do all sorts of stuff to me including firing depleted uranium bunker busting shells at my swimsuit area.”
the thought of the resulting screams and explosions brought a gleam to Seras' eyes that would have made her former master either proud, or terrified.
They flew quickly to the testing lab where the two master class units had been set aside. There were actually three sets of guyver units made, foot solider, commander and master class. The foot soldiers were actually derived from three different types of magical spiders while both the commander and master were imbued with the essence of ancient acromantulas. The commander class could issue orders in a needed situation and the Master class could bypass the other units and force them to shut down completely. He removed his unit from the case he had set them in and he carried it with a little nervousness as they flew to the testing chamber. That room alone took a year to design and build to withstand everything that was going to happen to him in there.
He carried the unit into the room and it the door sealed itself behind him. The room was completely white, void of even the slightest shadow. While there were no cameras visible he knew his wife was monitoring everything his body was doing at the moment. He felt the different shields and wards activate and he nodded. It was an unspoken cue and he removed his limiters and suppressed his power as best he could while he placed the unit over his face.
There was an odd feeling, like he was being coated in warm taffy but surprisingly no pain. There were some whirring and clicking noises and his body suddenly felt normal again. The armor had covered him then automatically retracted itself within him and it's own subspace pocket. He tried to access his power and he was surprised at how little he could reach. He had a drop of it, a drop from a really large pool of power he knew he had. It was both disconcerting and a relief at the same time. “My power's blocked, both my Chi and magic, I've got the basic quickening but I think no wandless. Hell I don't think I could do a battle aura at his point or a simple levitation charm. Let me, hang on a tic.” his arms were itching and tingling and he felt like scratching a spot just before the bend in his wrist on the inside of his arms.
“Ladies and gentlemen I believe we've got spinnerets. Now to see if they work, ready the spectroanalyzer and send in something for me to put some in.”
A beaker came appeared in the room, he filled it with a web ball that he instinctively knew how to create and it shimmered out of the room. He waited while his wife analyzed the substance.
“Good news, it's stronger than Acromantula silk and has no residual traces of magic, it can't be tracked back to you through your own magical signature.”
Alex grinned, “Perfect now let's test out and see if it comes with a spider sense, run program alpha seven point six.”
Seras initiated the program her husband had developed for the different testing procedures he'd created for his different projects. If they were up to snuff, he'd upgrade them, if they weren't he'd upgrade them. Soon the room was completely dark to Alex's eyes as wind came at him in all directions and he heard a high keening noise that seemed to drown everything else out. He was blind to everything save for touch and a tingling in the back of his head that grew stronger. He followed the instinct and dodged out of the way of several unseen fast moving projectiles that were tracking him as well as firing randomly from various spots in the room. After five minutes of frantic dodging he was tagged in the leg by a painful paintball that was filled with a numbing potion. He had just lost the use of his right leg. He shouted out to end the program and a ball that was going to hit him in the face winked out of existence.
As the sensation slowly creeped back into his leg he said aloud, “Spider-sense check. Let's test out the armor and you get to kick me in the Jimmy like I know you want to at this point dear.” Bruised testicles had always been a sore point with him, ever since his days as the pale rider he'd had reason to gripe about it. It wasn't his fault that both Methos and himself had were a bit more 'ballsy' in more than one sense. He had a right to be testy about it after Happosai had found that little weakness.
“All right hon, call up the armor and we can field test it for the worst conditions we can create using this fancy room of yours.” Seras said over the intercom.
Alex's eyes bugged out. “Dear do you even know what this room can do?”
“Yep, call the armor I want to test out it's weapons and defensive capabilities. It should rather therapeutic to fire big guns at you.”
Alex sighed and complied. Even after all these years his wife still had a yen for the large, explosive weaponry. He was exposed to alternating intense gravities and low ones, extreme heat followed by cold, electricity, the most dangerous corrosives they knew and a few harry had come up with. He'd been shot with quite a few anti bunker shells and large plasma blasts that would be the equivalent of a full barrage from a Go'auld mothership. And he was fine. The aura effects of the armor either absorbed, deflected or neutralized everything thrown at it. When magic was thrown at a defensive corona of chi sprang up. He knew that this armor was a masterpiece, a pinnacle of creation and unbelievably damn dangerous. He knew why the Chornos corp was scared of Guyvers and was glad he'd put in moral failsafes into the armors.
After two hours of extensive testing, while not actually hurt, Alex felt sore all the same. “Well I'd say the test was a great success, much like you knew it would be from all the data we studied into designing the damn things. You ready to head to bed? I want to get started on recruiting the one in Chicago and finding the other one as soon as possible.”
“Sure, I'm a bit parched though. Think you could spare some blood for me as well as your lower half?”
“I'm up for it dear, as always. Race you, no teleporting or melding with shadows though.” What followed can only really be described as lemonish, especially since less than two percent of the world's population can bend that way.
The next morning Alex and Seras hopped back a day and Alex shifted his form to his latest legal persona, David Xanatos complete with goatee and Johnathan Frakes voice. His wife did the same but shifted to Fox. Both identities had established identities and families stemming back to the early days of Staten Island. Lovely little place and at a time governmental records were unbelievably easy to create and or modify.
The two in their now soon to be prominent public guises, quickly re scrolled through the data and rumors about one man in particular, Steve Urkel.
They found his mailing address was listed at the same house as one Carl and his wife Harriet Winslow. The two took a car that looked an awful lot like an old Volvo and transported themselves to the neighborhood and drove to the address.
It was a modest house in a modest neighborhood. They made their way up the steps after parking their vehicle and knocked on the door. It was a little after eight so Carl might not have gone to the station yet.
Harriett Winslow answered the knock at the door. The knock had come just as she was about to start cleaning up from breakfast. The relationship between Carl and Steve was better now that both Laura and Eddie had moved out on their own. The eccentric and socially stunted scientist had become a part of their family and was like a son to them. He couldn't replace their missing daughter Judy, something the family rarely ever talked about but he was accepted nonetheless.
She vaguely recognized the people at the door, the woman's odd teal green fox tattoo covering one eye was unusual and familiar at the same time.
The goatee sporting man smiled a charming smile, complete with tooth sparkle. “Good morning Mrs. Winslow, is there a Steve Urkel here? This is his last known mailing address and my wife and I wish to speak to him concerning some matters.”
“He's here, how can I help you two?” She asked, wondering if these two meant to harm Steve.
The man smiled again. “Sorry, my name is David Xanatos and I'm here to try to recruit Mr. Urkel for the R and D department at Xanatos Industries. This is my wife, Fox, head of personnel.”
The redhead smiled. “Good morning Mrs. Winslow. May we come in?” She asked, her voice strong, yet soft at the same time.
Harriett paused for a moment, these two seemed serious about recruiting Steve. “All right, come in. I'd offer you something to eat but we finished breakfast a few minutes ago. I still have some coffee on the burner if you would like some.”
“That would be great.” 'David' said. Harriett motioned them into the living room and the two sat down on one end of the sofa and one of the chairs in the room. They waited for Harriett and Steve to come in. They could hear him, tinkering on something in the basement even with the soft hum that came up from the floor that told them there was a great deal of equipment down there.
“Carl we've got two people looking to recruit Steve for their R and D division of their company.” Harriett said after the swinging door to the kitchen stopped swinging.
Carl looked a little surprised. Steve was a genius and he'd thought that the boy had covered his tracks well enough. Some of the stuff he invented was just not made for public consumption. Having the nice version of a mad scientist living under your roof was odd, but the police force was understanding and helped to keep things pretty quiet when the need arose.
“What company?” He asked.
“Xanatos Industries.” his wife replied.
“No, really Harriett, what company?” Carl knew that name from when his nephew Richie and his friend ordered all that stuff from the home shopping channel.
“They said they were David and Fox Xanatos of Xanatos Industries.” Harriett said with a slight glare at her husband for not believing her.
“Huh, I'm gong to call a detective at the station and see if he can pull up anything real quick on them. They might be nut cases. You keep the occupied.”
Harriett knew not to question Carl over something like this, he had a small reputation for handling odd situations. He had ever since that one night with John McClaine when things went to hell. Harriett rose from the table and poured some coffee while Carl called a few people to confirm the existence of Xanatos Industries.
Five minutes later Carl was confused. There really was a Xanatos Industries, Unlimited that had been established back in 1972 by a Lazarus Xanatos as a think tank. It was looking more and more like they really were here for Steve.
Carl almost ran back into the kitchen after he went into the family room. The man looked just like the one from the kids show. It was unnerving to say the least.
“Hi, I'm Carl Winslow, my wife tells me you two are David and Fox Xanatos of Xanatos industries. I hate to say it but you and your wife look just like and have the same names as two characters from a Disney cartoon my nephew used to watch.”
'David' grinned. “My father Lazarus Xanatos, who helped form the company made deals with a few groups, one of which being Disney. We could try to develop some of the things they imagined into real things and they would get a part of the profit. It worked both ways, my family has been portrayed in that series even if the creators didn't realize how close they were to the mark on some things. I've seen Gargoyles and my assistant Owen certainly isn't Puck in disguise even if he has a rather esoteric sense of humor.”
“Well, when my wife told me who was here I ran a quick background check. I'm a police officer you see so when my wife tells me the names of two supposedly fictional people are here to see Steve, I ran a background check on you and your company.” Carl said.
The two visitors looked at each other and shrugged. “It's understandable. We'd still like to speak to Steve though We have a few things that might catch his eye. His own work got our attention and some of it runs along lines similar to ours.” Carl nodded, he knew that the majority of Steve's inventions while somewhat flawed, did work. Sometimes in the most unexpected ways but they did work.
Carl was a bit torn, he need to head to work soon but wanted to see if Steve would agree to see these people. He excused himself from the room and headed down to the basement. “Steve, we've got some people here who want to talk to you about a job.”
“Really?” was the drawn out and more than slightly nasal reply. It had taken many a year but Carl had stopped hating the voice. Steve himself was surprised he'd spent a great deal of his time recently trying to cover his past exploits due to some other parties wanting to steal his work and pass it off for their own.
“Yes they are here from a Xanatos Industries looking to put you in their R and D department.
There was a snort. “Good one Big Guy, you got me, but I know for a fact that Xanatos industries is from that show Gargoyles Richie used to make me watch.”
“It's no joke Steve. David and Fox Xantaos are upstairs wanting to talk to you and I ran a background check on them and their company. As it stands they seem to be on the level. I've got to head into work soon so I need to know if you're willing to talk to them.”
Steve smiled and a glint from an unknown light source went across his red framed glasses. “We'll see Carl, let's go.”
When the introductions done Steve asked exactly what they had developed and why he should work for them. Seras grinned and took out one of their personal palm-comms. She opened it and brought up a few formulas for some of their stuff.
Steve opened the link and looked over the few formulas. His eyes widened. “Carl, I'm going to talk to them. You can go to work.”
Carl nodded and finished getting ready and kissed his wife goodbye and headed off to work.
Steve looked at the two of them “This is what you've got so far?”
Alex grinned. “Tip of the Iceberg Mr. Urkel. We're going public next week with just about everything we've come up with so far. We want you with us and give our R and D a great boost. You'd have a pretty much unlimited budget and resources with the exception that we don't make doomsday devices. We want to help the world, not blow it up. We do make weapons but the majority of which are nonlethal. That little device in your hands is a PC, a Palm Communicator. It's a great deal of things including video phone, personal computer and it comes with it's own AI. It has seven different independent security features and a 38 terabyte hard drive with an self luminous display.
Steve's eyes glazed over. “This is way ahead of everything on the market and you say you're going to release more stuff like this? How much is something like this going to run?”
“Two hundred and fifty in U.S. Currency. It's double the manufacturing cost”
“What's it's power supply I don't see a plug.”
“You made that? That's been a side project of mine for years but it always blew up.”
“Yeah, it does that. We spent over twenty years developing it. It took a year or more to find a way to contain it.” Alex said.
“How did you manage to contain it? It has an unlimited potential for kinetic energy.”
“An inertial dampening field. One designed to use minimal energy.”
“You created a dampening field? That could help to revolutionize travel, space or otherwise.”
Alex grinned. “You're right, we've gotten a lot done that is going public and for international release. We could also use some fresh blood in our research department. You are one of two potentials that we wanted to work for us. We've heard a great deal of rumors about you but nothing concrete except for that stunt at Disney. Those were quieted quite successfully by the way.”
“It wasn't just me trying to keep things quiet I did have some help.” Steve explained
“Perfectly understandable considering that a great deal of countries would be interested in having you work for them. We'd be willing to get you to work for an international corporation that would keep you sheltered form the different internationals.”
“It's been a close call once or twice with that. I'm definitely listening.”
“Before we agree to anything can we at least see your lab? I've been curious to see what you've been working with. You'll have updated equipment even if we have to retrofit it to work.”
Steve nodded “That's if I agree to it. For all I know you just want to look at my work and try to steal some of it.”
“And that's what the contracts are for. We've got one for us to just take a look around. Harriett can use her power as a notary to make it legal.”
Harriett who'd been sitting quietly on the sidelines spoke up. “Exactly how did you know I was a notary?”
Seras shrugged. “The same way we know you used to work with a certain Balki Bartakamous from Mepos and his cousin Larry under your maiden name. We have access to information and we're quite thorough with the people we want to recruit. Information gathering is something Xanatos industries is good at.” He handed Harriett the two separate sets of contracts.
The two residents spent twenty minutes reading over the contracts when the two of them got to a certain sub-clause.
“What exactly do you mean by 'the party and any related or involved parties have the rights for physical and chronal adaptation and modification?” Steve asked. Harriett was intrigued.
“How old do I look Steve?” Alex asked.
“I'd say around late twenties to early thirties why?”
The ever present grin formed into a smirk. “I'm actually fifty and no I don't dye my hair. We've found a way to slow and in some cases reverse the aging process almost indefinitely.”
“Really?” Harriett asked.
“Sort of, there would be a load of nondisclosure agreements to be signed before you found out anymore about our 'special' projects. The disclosure would be given provided you accept the job. Does the other contract prove satisfactory for the time being?”
Harriett was stunned by Alex's supposed age (HA!) recovered quickly and nodded. “I'll go get my seal.” She got up and headed upstairs.
Once Harriett was upstairs. Steve asked. “So really, how old are you?”
“Again with the disclosure agreement, but it's a little higher than fifty.”
Harriett came back down with the seal and they signed dated and notarized the first contract.
With the first agreement underway Alex and Seras followed Steve down the stairs to his lab. They were impressed by the majority of it including the 'failed' experiments. One such was the Urkel-bot. The AI was corrupted but impressive considering how little time he'd put into it. It was a true miracle that the government or the NID hadn't snatched him up yet.
The reviewed most of it and they came up to his more successful work, the DNA chamber. “So you can imbue a person with the characteristics and muscle memory of a person based off of a hair sample, even if only for an hour?” Seras asked.
“Yeah, it was the Bruce Juice formula. It always wore off though.” Steve answered
“I read the police reports from when you and Mr. Winslow took on those people at that bar. “
Steve was stunned. The man had done his homework. “We did our best at the time.”
Alex nodded. “Yeah, it's a good idea and all while the human genome is curiously suggestible but is capable of resetting itself after a certain time. Repeated treatments to vary and modify the genetic code would be needed to effect a permanent change. We've worked on something similar. The main line of it focuses on increasing athletic and cognitive abilities. We also try to fix debilitating physical handicaps such as bad eyesight and certain health problems like heart conditions. We've perfected something we call the Howard treatment. Are you familiar Heinlein and his fictional character Lazarus Long?”
“Sure.” Steve admitted.
“Well we were able to theoretically and now are actually able to triple the human life span. With treatment people would age slower once they reach the age of twenty. The only really ethical issues we'd have to deal with it are overpopulation and segregation based on the long lived and not. The treatment also seems to make both men and women extra fertile. The fact you could easily live to see great great great grandchildren would also be an issue.”
“It sounds like you've come up with a few things that could also eventually be considered possible dangers to humanity.” Steve said with a frown.
“Well, sort of. But the majority of our creations were meant to help the world. We have perfected recycling technologies to the point where we can recycle most matter. Provided our male form of birth control gets approved the world could easily be sitting pretty for a long time.”
“It sounds like you people have put forth a great deal of effort into all of this.” Steve concluded
“We have.” Alex said with a grin. //You've no idea// he thought as they finished the tour of the lab.
“Your work is most impressive Mr. Urkel. Consider our offer. If you take it, the Winslows will be able to have the extended life option. Mr. Winslow could use it considering his weight issues.”
Steve nodded, he knew the Big Guy being the Big Guy might have some issues later. “It sounds too good to be true.”
“It does, but you'll understand how we've done some of what we have to have offer after you sign the nondisclosure agreement.”
“Really. It seems that some of this just isn't some pretty tech. What have you really got planned?” Steve asked.
“Pinky and the Brain Steve-o.”
“Ah.” Steve acknowledged.
“Yeah, but with the business world and there would be no need need for mind control.” Alex explained.
“We try. You in? We promise no form of persuasion or coercion if you don't want in”
“It seemss like a great chance to get my work working properly. I'm in.”
Alex grinned. “Good lad. Let's get that second contract taken care of and we'll detail what exactly is going to happen next week and arrange for your equipment to be moved”
“What's happening next week?”
“Xanatos industries reveals THE WORLD OF TOMORROW.” Alex said in his best announcer voice, which happened to be pretty good.
Steve snickered and snorted. “Now I know I'm in. Where's the main location of your business?”
“Wyoming. You'll see when you get back to the compound.”
“Why Wyoming?” Steve asked.
“Have you ever been to Wyoming?”
“Umm.....no. Good point. It's going to take a while to pack everything.”
Alex and Seras shared an amused glance. “Let us worry about that once you sign the final contract and the non disclosure agreements you'll understand.”
The second contracts were reviewed once again and Steve signed while Harriett notarized. Alex was tempted to do a blood signature as well but there wasn't a need to go into unbreakable magical oaths just yet.
They gave Steve two days to get everything with his 'family' sorted out with an open invite for Carl and Harriett to go through the 'process'. A rejuvenation with a little extra thrown in. If they were to move they could easily have a rejuve without many complications.
After they left the Winslow residence the two decided to give two people a preview of things ot come but first they needed to head to L.A. They had a hotel to buy and fix up as well as a gang to speak to.
The Realtor for the property was pretty easy to find and they made the transaction through the human fronted branch of American Gringotts. It seemed they were all too happy to help the 'Great Lazarus'.
Unlimited credit and an almost equal level of capital behind it was a good thing.
Once it was bought they haded back to the compound to grab some equipment needed to upgrade Gunn's crew.
When they came back to the hotel they used Dagny to double check the two targets whose homes they were going to 'upgrade'. Once the information was confirmed they resumed their journey to the lair of one of the few gangs that actually did good in LA.
He had Dagny access the local police database and made sure to clear out the records of all of the upper grouping of fighters. They were going to have to upgrade the entire group if they wanted to. The plan was hopefully going to work.
One of the few things they had developed but was hard to create without the help of a moderately powerful wizard was the self replenishing cupboards. You put an item in and it would replicate itself after eight hours. It would definitely help out not only for the gang even if they didn't want the upgrades but the local homeless shelters.
When the records were cleared Alex made a quick use of his alchemical and transfigurational skills at the hotel after having his wife cast a rather powerful notice-me-not charm on the building.
When it was clear for him to get to work he flared his magical aura to surround the building. The paint was altered to a stronger polymer. The lead in the pipes was transmuted into materials that were much more modern. The asbestos was altered into fiberglass insulation and the walls were strengthened. He concentrated and found a pool. There was a great deal of wood covering it that was turned into a rather decorative gazebo out in the courtyard.
He finished and withdrew his aura. It was a small expenditure and he already felt his magical reserves building again. The building was now up to code.
When that was finished, while still dressed as David and Fox Xanatos they headed to Gunn's warehouse. After the knocked on the door, Alex recognized Allona's eyes from the peephole.
“Who are you?” she asked.
“Umm... oops.” Alex looked at his wife and himself. “Sorry about this Allona, It's me Mr. Wizard.”
When he finished saying that he shifted his facial features back to that of Alex. His goatee retracted and his ponytail disappeared while the rest of his features moved to their original place. He was now looked just like Alex 'Mr. Wizard' Belmont.
It took her a moment but she let out a squeal and opened the door, giving neither of them an actual invitation to the domicile as a caution. He mentally shrugged he knew quite a few wards that would help out the building a great deal.
Alonna eyed Alex up and down with a glazed and slightly hazy look in her eyes. He was in his natural, SH3 form. He kept the form even when sealed as he was in order to adapt to the drain it had on him.
Seras was surprised and amused by Alonna's reaction to her husband. She knew he was sexy but it had been quite a while since they had interacted in social situations with actual people. Luckily her faith in him was unshakable. The lust she could smell coming of the girl was heady and she knew her husband could detect it as well. She looked over at him and saw the glitter of amusement in his eyes.
Alex snapped his fingers in Alonna's face to get her attention. It was a remarkably loud snap and he made a mental note to try and control that better.
“Are you all here?” Alex asked her.
“Yeah, Toby and his crew just got back from a food run, what's up? You look different.” She said with a small grin and a blush.
“A lot has happened. Let's just say while it's been two weeks for you it's been over four hundred years for me. It's a long story. I've got a lot of stuff to tell both to you and your brother and the group as well. A lot of stuff is going to happen soon, nothing bad per say, just different.” He said with a slight grin.
“What's with you changing your face and who's the redhead?” She asked.
“Well I had my magic unsealed completely and that came with a few gifts. Being a metamorph is one of them. This is Seras, my wife of some three odd centuries.”
Said redhead dropped her disguise field and it revealed her weapons and old Hellsing uniform. “She's a former member of the Hellsing Organization a group based in England that takes out a certain type of vampire called Mideon. Those vamps are different and they generally aren't evil bloodsuckers, Seras herself is one of them and has only fed off me for almost as long as I've known her.”
“She feeds on you? And she was out in daylight?” Alonna asked. Shocked was a good word.
“Well we tried for her to drink normal human blood about a century ago, well synthesized blood at least and it took the equivalent of draining three hundred people for one feeding compared to a light bite on me. Her power has grown in her time with me and due to that her diet has become limited based on her own preferences and the ultimate practicality of it all .Her sire is Dracula himself. He's a bit of nut job but a dangerous opponent and entertaining ally for the morbid. In fact Great Britain is generally free of most demons save for a few peaceful types and some brothels.
“Okay.........” Both Seras and Alonna raised an eyebrow at that. Alex shrugged. “Well that's according to the survey done by the Watcher's council. Ireland is full of Brachen demons but the rest if fairly demon free. Besides I bring gifts.”
Seras sighed, her husband could bottle his own brand of insanity. Well at least he never talked to himself.....except his past selves well...never mind.
They followed Alonna into the main living area of the fighter's den and she instructed them to stay there while she gathered everyone together. Alex walked around and gave the general nods and handshakes. After he did so he cleared his throat and amplified his voice with a mild sonorous charm.
“Ladies and Gentleman, a lot has happened in the past two weeks. I'll tell you more about that in a minute but most of is is very odd but not bad in any real sense of the word. Now, you all know me as either Alex Belmont or “Mr. Wizard” due to the fact that the majority of witnessed the fact that I can shoot a type of lighting out of my hands and dust vamps but good.” He paused for a moment as the chuckles died down.
“Now I am going to let you all in on a new alias that is going to be getting a great deal of attention in the next few weeks, for all intents and purposes in the business world I will be called David Xanatos, heir of Xanatos industries. A company which is going to go public and there is going to be a display of technologies that was over a century in the making. The world is going to change and I hope and pray it will be only for the better.”
He grinned, “As it stands right now, I'm worth close to eight billion dollars in net worth and that should multiply by at a minimum of ten in the next five years.”
He let the looks of shock fade and the one guy in the back who's loud declaration of recognizing the name Xanatos fade as well. He was probably the same one who knew about the Belmonts.
“Now then as to where this new technology came from, due to garnering a few favors from a few gods and soundly beating others at strip poker, yes that was plural. There is a pretty interesting upper hierarchy with an equally odd minimal interference policy, something about Free Will. I was able to spend some time with my lovely wife and well adjusted son in a pocket dimension. My son's name by the way is Harrison James Potter”
There was a cry from the back of the group. “Oh Hell no” Same guy. Who really doesn't need a hobby it seems. A few of the others had a look of recognition but weren't vocal in the least. Alex rolled his eyes. “Yes that Harry Potter. Don't worry about the evil Dark Board Game Moldieshorts, he should be dealt with at the same time as the rest of the things we have planned are taken care of. Next Friday night is going to be one interesting evening for mankind, and for the demons as well I suspect.”
He paused for a moment and paced. “A lot has happened, for you it's been two weeks, for my wife who you are all now seeing next to me, the ever lovely, radiant, shining and so on and so forth Seras Victoria it's been close to four centuries. For myself however it's been about five hundred and fifty years since I last saw you people. Be glad I've got one hell of a memory. In case you're wondering yes it seems I really am immortal and frankly don't even try to recreate what I have gone through to get it, it took a great deal of research and the manipulations of higher beings in the first place to give me enough of a chaotic aura to even petition a god of chaos, let alone receive on of their highest blessings in the fashion that I did. Well after that my wife here isn't exactly human what you all need and must understand is that there a great deal of different supernatural beings out there, some good some neutral and a hell of lot willing to strip the flesh from your bones.”
“You might not be aware but there are actually three distinct types of vampires that I know of that exist in this dimension. We have the common demonic trash that you all know about, Then there are the Mideon, these vampires unlike the kind you are all so familiar with still possess their souls granted over time there is a great chance of the degradation of one's moral compass but they are generally the same person once turned. My wife is one of them and to be honest they are currently being controlled and policed in another fashion. It's rare for them to turn others and difficult. The only real problem is some remnants of Hitler's regime want to create synthetic ones and are damn close to succeeding. Don't worry though, they'll be burning in hell by next the Tuesday after next.
Now the third race aren't even blood drinkers, though they do feed off of humans, they're sex demons and they have limited numbers and rarely procreate. They aren't lethal provided they get regular feedings and they make up a substantial portion of demon brothels. Let's just go by the not bother them policy.”
“Now as to the 'fight' you are all dedicated in, I bring a great deal of help and offer what you all could consider 'upgrades'. One of which is something I call the Demo-dex a hand held computer that can classify any demon you are unfamiliar with and put it in either the 'kill' or leave alone category and explain why. Also it can tell you to run the hell away if need be. I've also created somethings that would give the wearer boosted abilities you'd have to see to believe. Along with this would be a few others that the Dude in the back would probably recognize.”
He grinned as a he released a projection orb from his Stuffspace and it started the holographic slide show. It hovered over them and produced a three dimensional projection of a octangular object that was an odd green color with a silver sphere in the middle. There was the blank stares he expected and Alex coughed to get their attention. “It's called a Guyver unit.”
There was indeed a cry from the back. “Oh Damn.”
“Jesus Tommy shut the hell up!” someone screamed and moments later the one with too much free time was on the ground having the wind knocked out of him. The others ignored this. It happened to Tommy more often than they would care to admit.
“Anyways.” Alex continued. “This little baby here is capable, when armored to give a person a combination of Sonic/Microwave/Gravity blasts that can demolish city blocks at full power. It also has flight capability, two blades that can become coated with anything from wood to silver in case you run into a nasty pack of Polgara demons. It augments a person's to five times the proportionate strength of a spider when suited and just proportionate when not. You get all the pluses of being 'spider-man' including having spinnerettes in your arms.”
The video screen was showing them what the suit could do and now they were watching Alex's test run of the spider powers in the training sim he had run. They were more than a little impressed.
“I developed this armor through the use of a derived metal from a friend of mine, rather rigorous work in runes and the use of the spirits of Acromantulas of various nests. They are a magical subclass of spider. The list of abilities goes on but you'll know exactly what you can and can't do with it. It took over seventy five years to make it and fine tune it but as you can see it's a thing of beauty. Let's just say the fight will soon be taken to them, save for a few locations.
“Now along with the armor we've developed something we would blatantly call the 'super soldier serum' and another fun thing called Lazarus pits. You lose an arm? We can grow it back. You get crippled in a fight? You'll be walking by the end of the day. Now I'd like to speak with Gunn in private for a moment, if any of you want enhancements of any sort, there are others like knowledge upgrades, take a number. He waved a hand off to his left and a ticket dispenser appeared and a sign that said. “Now serving 00.” in red neon.
Charles and Alonna were surprised by the request. “What the hell's going on man? What happened to you?” Charles asked
“A whole hell of a lot happened Charlie boy. Most importantly I had my magic unsealed. You heard me.” Alex said with a serious look on his face.
“But you could already toss around lightning like it was nothing. That was when your magic was sealed? Shit!” Gunn exclaimed.
“As much as I tire of saying it, it's a long story. Listen a lot is going to happen soon. Most of it I have gotten the okay from the suits upstairs, well the ones who matter. The weapons I'm offering are a decent leap but the majority of it's capabilities ties into the true potential of humans.”
“What do you mean?” Alonna asked.
“We really were created in her image. Humans with the right training can ascend to a higher level of existence to become part of the universe, lower level deities if you will. That is why demons fear humans, if the true potential were ever exercised by all of humanity then they would be wiped out in an instant, well the evil and soulless would. Of course the upper realms would be a tad crowded and then the war with the other side would begin in earnest.” Alex explained.
“Now what I would like anyone who signs up to do is go on a vamp killing spree. Just vamps though since they are a plenty. I intend to start making treaties with various demon tribes who don't wish to bring hell to earth. Most are currently in tentative alliances with Wolfram and Heart because they have a lion share supply of whatever said tribes need for food. I know one tribe of rather nice demons who literally need to eat babies of whatever species. It's an odd genetic thing but that can be replaced by something my son developed.”
“What did he develop?” Gunn asked though he mentally wondered about the baby eating demons.
“A meat plant, one that could be adapted to make human meat if necessary.” He said with a grin.
“huh.” was Gunn's intelligent reply
“Now the armor, it has some listed commands bearers can't get around, like the rules Robocop had to follow. You can't steal from noncombatants, drug dealers and the like you can. You can't use your abilities to harm others, force things or become a super criminal. If you do then the unit will stop you. It uses rather painful negative reinforcement for repeat attempts.
“Sounds reasonable, you can't give out superpowers without some means of making sure people don't get all big headed about it.” Alonna commented.
“Yeah look, I know you guys are set up all right here right now but I've got an idea for something that could help out the city. It's a detective agency that helps out with the 'Odd' cases, things that have a decidedly supernatural taint to them.. I bought up that old hotel, the Hyperion and put it way up to code. I can give you and whoever you pick the needed skills and knowledge upgrades. You're going up against an evil law firm at times though since Wolfram and Heart are decidedly on the bad side of the spectrum on both human and demonic levels. The weapons I have for you isn't the guyver armor, that's mainly for one man elimination situations. What I've got is something meant for a team.”
“Sounds like you're the man with the plan. What have you got?” Gunn asked curious about the knowledge upgrades. He never did finish High School.
“Have you ever seen the show Thundercats?”
There was silence for a few moments and Alex wondered when his wife had learned to imitate crickets so well.
“Yeah, but don't tell anyone. Where are you going with this?” Gunn begrudgingly admitted.
Alex grinned at the response and pulled one of the swords from Stuffspace. Both of the teens eyes widened in recognition. “Is that?” Gunn asked.
Alex laughed. “It's damned close. Essence of a Nemian Lion, mystical cat. The sword has ethereal ties to the other weapons in the set as well as the badges you can hand out to people that are charmed to be only seen by those who have one or are in the know. It also has been blessed by Apollo so you can have small visions with it. It's as close to the sword of omens as you're gonna get and comes with the claw shield as well. It has all the abilities of the cartoon and is unbreakable and can defend against electrical, fire, ice, and acid attacks.”
There was a gleam in Gunn's eye now. Maybe he wouldn't have to worry about going to that casino to make any deals in the future. Hell maybe he could burn it to the ground.
Alex saw the gleam in his friend's eye. “Now before you even try to take a weapon you get the soldier serum to enhance your own natural abilities first. Everyone gets that first even without any other upgrades. I want you all to have the best chance to survive that I can give you without training you for two centuries. Not many people can handle that much power anyways, not without accidentally blowing up the planet at least.”
“Seriously?” Gunn asked.
“Yep. I honestly don't know exactly how much energy I have at this point but I was able to fire off planet killers after five years of hard training. It's been four hundred years since then and I've gotten a lot stronger.” His wife snorted at that.
“Damn sounds like you went and did something stupid to get that powerful.”
“Sort of, I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. I'll admit I'm not perfect however, She allows room for flaws we are only human after all, well even some of the best demons and gods are flawed..” He trailed off when the others stared at him blankly.
“You'd understand if you'd hung out with the deities I have. By the way, never tell a goddess she has a big ass.” He continued only to be interrupted again.
“You had better have been drunk when you said that.” Said Allonna.
Alex rolled his eyes. “Yes, it was enchanted Mead. Fortunately that was what ended up saving my own ass from her wrath. Anyway the crew should they choose to accept this will be given the equivalent of at least a college education, complete wardrobe, portable yet roomy housing, food and the armor. They get to stay in the big cities to ferret out those who dwell in the shadows. Well save for Cleveland, it's a hellmouth and we stay away from those unless told to do specific missions on them. There is a reason and it's a damn good one so leave those hellholes, and I mean it literally alone.”
“My people will be taken care of?” Gunn asked. Even with the money they had gained from their previous excursions with Alex they could always use more green.
“Full ride for as long as they wish to keep up the fight. After that they get a decent retirement. Hell the armor even comes with Spidey sense.”
“Really really. It's damn effective as you saw in that little projection. I'm wearing a type now that acts as a limiter.” He took off his jacket and rolled up his sleeve.
He indicated the little lump on his arm. Not noticeable but there if you really looked at it. “This is the spinneret. Watch this.” He made an oddly familiar motion of pressing his middle and ring finger into his palm and squeezing. The web came out and shot across the room.
“As you can see it makes a fine web that's stronger than steel. It's a mystical variety of web otherwise known as Acromantula silk. It's stronger than the non magical variant. It can form a line for swinging, impact webbing balls that wrap around people and objects. There is a decent chance that some will get stingers of one variety or another that causes temporary paralysis of voluntary muscle control. We used three different varieties of Acromantulas. “ He said with a grin.
“Damn that's proof enough.” Gunn said, a little awestruck but he continued on. “So, Thundercats? Sounds like a plan but it sounds like there is going to be a lot of legal mumbo jumbo involved if we're going to have to deal with Wolfram and Heart. If anyone is going to have to have their head crammed full of that stuff it had better be me, I wouldn't inflict that on anyone else.” He finished wincing at the thought of having all of that crammed in his noggin.
“That's fine.” Alex said. “As it stands we can also get you a great deal of demon law and languages and some Gilbert and Sullivan for enunciation and vocabulary expansion. Think of it as a months worth of work with terrible tongue twisters. Effective, scarily so.” He said with a thoughtful look on his face.
It took Gunn two minutes to get over the fact he'd have some musicals memorized. After that he seemed okay with it. Denial, not just a river in Egypt folks.
Alex shrugged. “It's a permanent mental upgrade. I'd have to go in there myself to put up blocks to hide the knowledge from you and frankly it's too much effort in my opinion to get rid of the data. Make sure this is what you want Gunn.”
Gunn waved off his friend's concern. “Whatever, how we gonna do all this?” He asked.
“Well first the Booster and Baptism treatment, actually I need three drops of blood first. We put a bit of blood in the Lazarus pit and it will recognize and heal you. After that we inject you with the serum then dunk you in to fuel and accelerate the change. After that you get your weapon, or armor depending on what chooses you and your temperament. But you'd need a team in mind for a set of weapons to respond correctly for them. “
Gunn nodded. “I've got three or four in mind that could work, wait you don't have anything for Wily Kit and Kat do you?”
Alex shook his head. “In analysis they were minor distractions. Each person is kitted with similar secondary devices that they used as primary so they aren't needed in the equation. What I have are the weapons of Cheetarah, Panthro, Tygra, Bengali and of course Lion-O. Sword, staff, nun chuck, bolo whip and war hammer.”
Gunn nodded. He was more of an Axe kind of guy though but he still said, “It'll do.”
Alex grinned. “Super. Pick out who you need or want in your team and we'll go from there. I'll set thing up while Seras starts up the Delivery Dial Down for food. Everyone is going to want something to eat.” A lot of something if he was indeed correct.
They made their way back and all of them had volunteered. It seemed the good fight had just been handed ridiculous amounts of firepower. Or well it would soon. Alex looked them over and knew that the installed morality and ethics within the weapons was necessary. 'With great power comes great responsibility' went hand in hand with, 'Never hand out great power all Willy-nilly. You never know who wants to blow what up.'
It had taken some time but eventually after some privacy screens were conjured up the injections and dunks in the Lazarus pit began, which was soon followed by the first post transformational feeding. Such a thing always involved high sodium fatty foods, and a small side salad.
After the first feeding something that would be remembered by all as an odd sight to behold, They slowly went through the group handing out wit sharpening potions followed by the knowledge pills giving people what they requested within reason. He'd backtrack and hack the rest to get them the right qualifications at an earlier date.
Next people were outfitted with the right weapons for the task and Over forty Guyver units had bonded with Gunn's running crew. The remaining few were the ones Gunn had selected for the local chapter of the soon to be established Odin's Eye Investigations.
After everything was set up to where they wanted it the Guyver equipped drew lots for the larger cities that were Hellmouth Free in America and Canada. Some griped but mainly just the ones who got stuck with dealing with cities like Tulsa. Once they were all equipped with Trunks that were actually large homes as well as furniture they were all portkeyed to the various locations where they were going to set up their new patrols. Each was given five surveillance drones to help map out and watch over their new territories. It would be relayed to their command center in their personal trunks as well as to the central AI's of Dagny and James. It would be just a small part of the tasks those two would always be up to.
The remainder of Gunn's crew watched Alex and Seras clear out the warehouse, erasing all traces of their prolonged presence in the area. He gestured the others to come to him and he conjured up a rope and made it a portkey. “Hold on to this and we'll be transported to your new home, the Hyperion.”
Gunn looked at the others, shrugged and grasped the rope with one hand, the others did the same and they all felt a jerk behind their navels and they were suddenly in a plush looking but decidedly retro looking hotel lobby.
Gunn looked around while the others explored the lobby. “Nice digs. There a pool?”
Alex laughed. “Yeah, there is now how about you and your crew try and see which of these weapons bond to who yeah? After that you five can go claim rooms and we'll finish kitting this place out like it should be and set up a command center in the basement and ward the building to the teeth.” that being said Alex pulled out one of the Thundercat kits and set the weapons on the counter. He murmured the activation phrase, “By the code of Thundera” there was a brief flash and the weapons floated heading towards their chosen bearers. The Sword hovered in front of Gunn and a glow surrounded them both. Gunn grew in height and had dark fur sprout all over his body. He was fortunate Alex had cast resizing charms on all of their clothing before the first change. Gunn's shaved head burst with new growth and a dark mane of hair now coated his previously shiny skull. Similar changes were happening to the others and Alonna had been chosen by the Cheetarah staff. She was currently trying to adjust to the new counterbalances she had in her front. Alex slapped his hand to his forehead. He'd forgotten that there was a more than decent chance of 'enhancement' even after the use of the Serum.
The others were faring better. Alex brought out some nutrient potions and gave them to the recently felined. It wasn't a meal but it would stop any chance of them getting the shakes. “All right you five listen up. You are all currently 'Catted out' you can shift back to human form, just imagine two buttons. One is for your current cat form, the other is for human. Press the human one.” they closed their eyes and did as they were told. Each shifted back to their human forms. Alex nodded. “Good. Now we're going to finish setting up and getting you all the needed paperwork and permits postdated so you can start up tomorrow. After that we need to try to find a girl who disappeared a few years back.” He was about to continue explaining when the front door opened, Seras, himself and a young long haired woman came in. The woman looked nervous and did a quick double take at seeing two forms of Alex and Seras.
The Alex who was talking to Gunn grinned. “Well it seems I will be successful. His Link beeped and he got a small update with minimal data of what he was about to do. Just enough to guide him without telling him what to do specifically. He really didn't want to dictate his life to himself. Nudges through were sometimes welcome. He had a location of their entrance portal, an exit portal and a small summary of the dimension known as Pylea.
He bid his goodbye which weren't needed since they technically were still here on property but he dis anyways
He showed his wife the data and the finished what they needed to do for the hotel and drove towards the Library Winifred Burkle was last known to be working at. They were reviewing their own investigation that wasn't aided by the future data they had gotten from themselves.
“Hon listen to this, Burkle's overseer when she was doing her doctoral work has had a great deal of students disappear, about six in total in the past ten years. Within four to six months after each one vanished he came out with either a new breakthrough or an advancement of his older theories.”
“So he got rid of the brilliant students and took their work for his own after the heat was off. Sick bastard. Oh well, those who can't, teach” Alex summarized.
Sadly Seras agreed with the sentiment. “The professor would be dealt with in his own time. Maybe some planted or actual evidence. I don't agree with planting evidence but we can at least do a surface scan while talking to him about Burkle to discern whether he's guilty or not.”
“Agreed. If he truly is terrible then justice will be brought to him in one form or another. Now then let's head to this library and find the book needed to get us to Pylea.”
The drive was boring and LA traffic really seemed to piss Alex off. Granted he'd recently spent close to five centuries without having to drive much if at all so he'd naturally be a tad moody with other drivers on the road. He had eventually given up and set the modified car to Autopilot, letting the embedded AI that was synched to Dagny take over. Why drive when you can have someone else do it for you?
They reviewed what information they had on the plane and it was a fair amount. It seemed it was ruled by a group of demons who worshiped the Wolf, Ram and Hart. While they didn't necessarily want to cause an upheaval, they had a physicist to retrieve, heaven help those who tried to stop them.
The car pulled up to the parking lot of the library and the two stepped out of the car. Xander was still wearing his normal face and Seras was had shifted back to her Fox form. He eyed the tall redhead and shrugged. They walked into the library and he scanned the building with his senses, dampened though they were and found something odd.
Seras quickly followed him to one small secluded section of the library. “What is it Alex?” she asked.
“What do you feel about this book hon?” he asked her. Holding a very old looking book bound in what looked like leather.
She stared at the book and focused on it. “It's tied to two different dimensions! It's anchored to this one with another dangling about like a fishing lure. Is this the book we're going to need?” she asked.
“Looks like it.” He opened the book and mentally tried to make sense of the words. “Oh crap.” he said out loud.
“what?” she asked.
“this book is like a phone book. It can open portals to a couple of different nearby dimensions. All within the lattice of our reality tied metaphysically upwards and downwards.”
“So it can be used to gain access to Hell dimensions as well as heavenly?” Seras asked curious.
“Seems that way. Though a few are more neutral than that.” he flipped through the book and found the right address. “Found it. Do me a favor and toss out some mystical energy would you? This is a hotspot but if another has a more active charge the portal will open there.”
“Yes dear.” Seras said and gathered some of her energy and filled the room with it. Once she had Alex started mumbling some on grouping of consonants and vowels. Soon enough the space in front of them started shimmering and a portal opened up. Alex grabbed his wife's hand after putting the book back on the shelf. They ran through the portal together without hesitation.
It soon closed up after them.
They landed in a grassy field that was close to a half mile away from a wooded area. Seras looked up at the sun but didn't flinch away from it. It didn't hurt her eyes at all.
“Alex do a scan of the light we're getting. Something is off with it.” she told her husband.
Alex pulled out a set of scouter drones as well as the basic diagnostic tools he'd need and linked them up to his Palm Comm. “It looks like there isn't any UV radiation. That would mean normal vamps could come here and be fine if there isn't a light based divinity tied to the sun of this dimension. The lack of UV means it won't degrade their flesh and the light isn't technically holy either.”
“Right. What do the scouter drones say?” she asked
He fiddled with his palm-comm some more. “They've extended their search to about a ten kilometer radius. There is a castle near the edge of the scanned area to the east of us and a series of caves within some hills to the west. Villages to the north and north west and some pits to the south, what looks like swamp water then slowly becoming volcanic springs.” He paused and sniffed the air. “I can't smell it though, what about you?” he asked her.
Seras took a deep breath through her nose and categorized and filtered the scents. “There are small traces of sulphur from the south. Not as much as you'd expect but this is a different dimension. Quite a few demonic species in the cities as well as human and” she paused and turned west. “Yes the caves are there, some have natural springs while others are... there's a human scent coming from that area I think. You up for running through the woods? She asked as she started floating off the ground.
Xander snorted and looked down as his suit. “No not really. I could transfigure these but that's be a bit of a waste.” He summoned his armor and started floating as well. His sensors coming on line and giving him the same readouts his palm comm did from the scouter drones. “Let's see these caves. If the data I gave myself is right then our target did manage to escape her captors a while back.”
His image shimmered and faded out of existence as he activated his cloaking device, Seras disillusioned herself and followed the disrupted air currents he left behind as a trail. He really had gone all out with that armor. She couldn't even track his aura.
They reached the caves within a few minutes and touched down. Alex released a cloaked scouter orb and it surveyed the entire network of caves within ten minutes. It also confirmed the presence of one human female.
“I think we may have found her.” he said as his sensor array beeped. He uncloaked and unsummoned his armor and checked his palm comm and the message it told him to say. He snorted and showed it to his wife who in turn started giggling.
“Well at least the girl has priorities.” she managed to say. Alex nodded and released some of the seals on his magic to transfigure the needed items. Fairly soon he had all he needed in a white paper bag. The two soon walked to the appropriate cave and walked in, mindful of any possible traps.
They found a frail looking woman dressed in what looked like a burlap sack staring at a wall with equations on it. The wall only had a few so they weren't entirely certain what they were looking at. Seras looked at her husband. Apparently they'd gotten far too used to making no noise when they walked, silencing charms on their shoes or not.
Alex made a noticeable “A-hem” noise. The woman at the far end of the cave whirled around and stared at them. Both curious and ready bolt at the same time.
Alex held up the bag. “If your name is Winnifred Burkle, I come in peace bearing tacos.”
“Tacos?” Fred asked perking up. “Really? Earth was real then?” she asked.
Alex and Seras shared a look. Isolation can do strange things to people. Especially brilliant people.
“Yes Ms. Burkle it is. You are currently in a different dimension known as Pylea. You were brought here through a portal you accidentally made. I'm sorry to say this but it's been three and a half years since you were on earth.”
“Do you know what it's like here?” She asked warily stepping forward as the smell of mexican food triggered several sense memories as well as reawakening her stomach.
“No just that humans are slaves in a mostly medieval society. I'm sorry that you have been put through this Ms. Burkle but we have come to find you and bring you back to Earth.” He walked forward a few steps and set down the bag before walking back away from her.
Fred looked in the bag and tentatively took out a taco. She took a bite and her eyes widened. “This is so good....” She said around a mouthful of taco. The rest was soon eaten.
“So why are you looking for me?” Fred asked while munching on another taco. Her nervousness being overridden by the familiar foodstuffs.
“I'm part of a think tank and we were looking for two specific people to recruit you and one other person to become part of our R and D section. We found out you went missing and managed to piece together what happened through some various research methods. As you may have noticed things are a bit different than you thought they were before you got transported here. Yes demons are real and so is magic but not all of it is bad. This dimension is controlled by the followers of an evil trinity of demons banished from the Earth a long time ago.”
“Okay. What is it that you people do? I'm just a physicist. Or I was. Most of it doesn't seem real anymore.” she took another bite of her taco. The food was giving credence to their story. She watched Alex wave his hand and a large cup formed with some brown liquid in it with ice as well.
“Is Dr. Pepper okay?” He asked. Her. Fred's eyes widened. “Magic?” she asked as she tentatively took a sip of the proffered soda. “It's really Dr. Pepper! You guys aren't kidding are you?”
“No we're not. We want to recruit you because we think you could benefit our company. We've already made a lot of stuff, some of which could be improved on when done by the right people. He pulled out his Palm Comm and keyed up a few of the formulas he'd shown Steve.
Her curiosity getting the better of her, Fred took the little gadget and looked at it's screen. Her eyes widened and she started to pace back and forth while staring at the screen, scrolling down it looking at more information. “you people managed to create stable wormhole technology?” she blurted.
“Well yeah. Actually it already existed we just ripped the plans and managed to build some that were capable of both working with the set we're building on planet as well as a set that was established a long time ago by another race.
Her eyes, if possible widened even more. “You mean there are really...” She trailed off.
Xander shrugged. “Haven't seen any personally yet but that will probably change soon enough. Now then Ms. Burkle if you want we can make you forget all of the time you've spent here in this dimension but that is a choice you alone have to make. If you do we can send you back home to your parents. If not we can set up a cover story and give you enough cash to count as backpay for your time here. We want to help you. Whether you work for us or not, you're going to leave here unharmed and hopefully healthy if you trust us that much.”
“Exactly how would I get healthy?” She asked after she scarfed another taco.
“We have some restorative techniques we can use to bring you back to optimum health. But it's up to you if want that done. We also would like to know exactly what things are like here if you don't mind telling us.” Seras told her.
Fred sighed and then tried to gather her thoughts about how things were here. It had always been harsh and a very different setting from what she had been used to back on earth to say the least. She told them about how she'd gotten here and her time as a 'cow' before she managed to get the collar that was rigged with explosives off. The two newcomers shared a look when she talked about the collars. They'd seen some movies with those in it and they never really ended well for the majority of the people wearing them.
She told them how' she had escaped and managed to survive in the caves while trying to figure out how the verbal combination she had uttered had opened the portal that had brought her here. She was getting closer to understanding the usage of words when correlated to interdimensional based on some rather high math and her own interpretation of cosmic string theory. The two visitors, who'd been tutored by Galt for a long time barely were able to keep up with her long winded and roundabout babbling explanation. This place had already taken it's toll on her, especially the isolation she'd been going through out of need for her own safety.
Seras and Xander communed mentally as they listened to her. Either the people needed to be put on equal footing with the demons with the help of outside interference. Possibly instituting a modified AI as a temporary voice of reason to help them establish their own government once these so called clerics were removed from action. It would take maybe a day, or two tops to topple the power in the region if what she told them of the champion of the clerics was true.
“Look, Ms. Burkle. We'll help you now, the question is are you willing to work for us? We've already got another on board, you may have heard of him before you got here. His name is Steve Urkel” Alex told her.
“You mean THE Steve Urkel? The legend of the underground science community? The one who built working jet packs, DNA rewriting technologies and Fully sentient AI's while he was still in High school?” She babbled excitedly.
“Yeah, him. You know the government has less information on him than you seem to.” Seras said looking at her oddly.
“Umm.... the internet?” the nervous Texan said sheepishly.
“Fangirl much?” Alex said with a grin, making the woman blush.
“Sorry, mostly what I heard were urban legends, but some stuff had credence.” She sighed. “All right, what can you do to get me back to how I used to be and home?”
Alex grinned. “You ever hear of something called the 'Guyver'?” he asked her.
Fred's dumbstruck look made Seras giggle.
After some potions, a dip in the Lazarus pit and a Guyver upgrade, Fred Burkle was more than chipper, heck she was literally bouncing off the walls of her cave. Both of her caveguests were considering doping her with some hefty confundus charms, or at least a liter of calming drought.
They went over the basic plan again and it was fairly simple when they had gotten another hint or two from Alex's palm comm.
Alex would be the distraction. He walked softly and carried a freakishly large sword that hadn't been used in far too long.
The other two flew high above and hidden from sight by disillusionment charms while Alex ran to the city, Sword on his back for the first time in a quarter century. Lazarus's sword would taste blood once again. He shifted his form to that of a green skinned red horned Agnogic demon. It wouldn't do for the champion to be bested by a human just yet.
After Alex had lit the torch the two women struck the castle quickly slaughtering the clerics and their guards with head and ass shots. This dimension was strange, and Spanking was less a simple punishment and more like attempted murder in most cases.
Fred couldn't stop giggling when she blew up the control unit after deactivating all of the control collars.
“You're beaten, and I haven't even had to draw my blade on you. Say it!” the newcomer screamed at the Groosalug.
The Groosalug frowned and struggled at the strange bonds keeping his limbs pinned to the side of the stone wall of the town. “While I reluctantly admit defeat, why do want me to say this phrase? It has no meaning that I can discern.”
the newcomers face shifted to his human one. “Let's just say it's a custom of the cows from my world.”
The Groosalug and the waiting audience grew shocked when they realized it was a Cow that had conquered their champion. Two of the loyal servants of the clerics stepped forward to dispatch the Cow and both were messily cleaved in half from one swing of the massive thing the newcomer called his sword.
The man grinned. “Say it, and you'll be spared, Groosalug.”
The former champion of his realm sighed and nodded. “She sells seashells by the seashore”. He said tonelessly.
The newcomer grinned again and stuck his blade into the ground. They heard numerous clicking noises then a large boom coming from the castle proper. The Groosalug watched horror as a large plume of smoke rose from the place he'd been residing since he first became champion.
The newcomer cut the other one's bonds. “looks like my distraction isn't needed anymore.” He said as the demonic crossbreed stood up and successfully struck the man who'd beaten him.
The Groosalug let out a scream as he cradled his broken hand.
“Sorry, my skin's a bit tougher than anything you can dish out, let alone my bones. High gravity can do that to a man.” the victor said smugly.
After the majority of the humans were gathered up, healed an in most cases had their minds restored and ability to speak returned to them, a slight conference was held and the Xanatos duo plus one, left RoboLincoln in charge for the next four years. It should work just fine provided no one made a Boothbot.
Once they were rewound in time to run into themselves back in their home dimension at the Hyperion, the married couple set to work on other things, namely redecorating the homes of two of the world's foremost leaders in technology and business.
Bill Gates woke up the next morning staring in horror as his bedroom had apparently been redecorated in Fat Albert collectibles. He idly remembered a drunken discussion with a strange man back in the eighties. Steve had been there as well. A contract had been signed. He mentally groaned. This meant that Xanatos had finished his own work and was going to go public soon.
Bill suddenly wondered if he should go into real estate while he still had money. That and maybe investing in something else. If this was going to be as big as he thought it would be, Microsoft, and Apple were screwed, possibly dead in the water within five years if they weren't careful.
What was he going to tell his wife?
It's been too long since an update, but I've go a lot of this to type out and I've still got Child of Rao on the burner as well as the next Fury ficlet.
Harry will have some more prominent parts in the upcoming chapters including both Ranma and Tenchi crossovers.
Should have a Rao chapter and a Fury ficlet up tomorrow. After that it's back to work. I've got a week's vacation in October so that should allow me some time to get this typed up nice and proper.