That at least was good news. The bad guys appeared to be contained. Speaking of which, Russell Hardwick, Ryan, Zola, Art, and the two Protection Force guards were still stuck too.
Plus, Dr. Griffin was off to the side of the room.
So we were all good except for the four, twenty-foot tall, grey mechs and they were less of a worry than you’d think. With Izzy being stronger than a locomotive, it only took one blow to knock the head off of the first mech in. The head bounced off the shoulder of the mech behind it and rolled off into the night.
From the lack of blood, I guessed that the operator sat in the main body, something that Izzy had seen through her sonar. I aimed my own sensors at it, confirming my guess as Izzy blurred, dropping downward to punch the mech in the leg, pushing through the thigh and ripping the leg off. The mech fell over and she started ripping the back open to get at the operator.
The one that Cassie fired on hadn’t done any better. She’d started off with her gun, melting the upper half of the head along with the guns mounted on its right and left shoulders.
It turned toward her, running, probably with the intent of stomping on her. She aimed her next shot roughly where the groin would be if the mech had one and the beam melted through it, burning through what appeared to be an engine.
I fired off several boombots at the mech coming in behind it on the left, shooting a bot into the joints of each leg and a third over the shoulder and into the back where the two guns appeared to be mounted.
Even as the explosions started, I could tell that it wasn’t going down. One of the guns fell off and the right leg lost part of its casing, showing the steel, and wires underneath. It had been crippled, but it wasn’t down.
Except then it fell over on its face, landing on top of the one Cassie had shot. She laughed and began to aim her gun at the one next to it.
You? I thought over at Daniel.
It wasn’t going down quickly enough.
I was about to ask him why he hadn’t gone after the one next to it, the last one of the four now standing, but as I did, I understood why.
As the last one brought its guns to bear on Izzy (the bullets bounced off the invisible shield around her with little flashes of golden light), a blur of purple appeared behind it and it fell forward. Then, with no warning, Jacklyn stood on top of it in her purple Accelerondo costume.
In a burst of speed and her typical attention to detail, she’d shattered the joints where both the legs and arms met the main body of the mech. As it fell, she must have run up the back, smashing the two guns.
When it hit the ground, she jumped off, landing next to it. “Is that everything? I’d have been here sooner, but there were people outside.”
Cassie holstered her gun and started cutting open the side of the nearest mech. “I think that’s everyone. We took out a bunch of guys outside before you got here. If anyone woke up, they were there.”
Even as she said those words, Victor flashed purple and silver. In that moment, he became the large, bare-chested, metal skirt wearing version of himself that I’d fought.
Before I could figure out how to move my arms enough to aim the sonics at him or tell Daniel to mentally nuke the guy, he disappeared in a flash of purple, leaving the remains of the goo that stuck him to the ground. Worse, he wasn’t the only one missing. Rook and his henchmen were gone. Zola and Art had also disappeared, leaving Russell Hardwick, Ryan McCall, and their Protection Force bodyguards.
Jaclyn blurred as Victor glowed and wound up standing next to Russell Hardwick.
My implant provided an instant replay when I wondered what happened. As they’d disappeared, Jaclyn ran toward Rook. As he and his henchman disappeared, the purple glow started on Art and Zola. She hadn’t made it to them before they teleported away either.
Crap, Daniel thought at me. I didn’t have any hint that Victor would do anything. Something was shielding his mind from both telepathy and prescience. Better, I can’t find him clairvoyantly either—which means he’s out of range or immune to that too.
Try sensing Rook? I thought back.
Daniel closed his eyes and I could see the corners of his mouth tighten below his mask.
Nope. I’d bet out of range, but this is Rook. He might have anti-psychic gadgets.
Daniel stared at the spot Victor had been and frowned.
Thinking about the True, I said, Do you feel like the humanity is in imminent danger of being destroyed by the True? Maybe not tomorrow, but in the next few years?
I sent him pictures of all of the True that I’d seen so far.
Long term prescience isn’t something I can do on demand. That’s more of an unexpected surprise when it happens. I can try, though.
He closed his eyes and started breathing slowly, one long breath followed by another. As he concentrated, Izzy walked up to us, watching him.
Then Daniel shook his head. When he thought at us, I could feel him touch everyone’s minds—Izzy’s, Cassie’s, Jaclyn’s, and of course, mine.
I don’t see a disaster in the near future—at least not one that connects to the True. At the worst, we’ve got a few years. At best, maybe the threat’s over. There’s an interesting wrinkle, though. Nick, you gave me memories of different True. I don’t sense anything special from the ones descended from Cassie or Stephanie, but there is a hint of something coming from the ones created using Emmy. I don’t know what it is. I don’t think it’s as simple as humanity’s destruction. It’s more complicated than that somehow.
That’s all I’ve got.
In the background as he ended, Dr. Griffin walked over to Russell Hardwick, and Ryan and held out a black leather wallet in front of them. “FBI. You have the right to remain silent…”
15 thoughts on “Mere Anarchy: Part 35”
That’s the last bit in this chapter. What follows is epilogue. When this book’s done, I’m going to do a short story that I’ve been wanting to write for a while. After that, I may do another short story with a character other than Nick because I know some people like other perspectives.
That said, I’m not sure who at this point and I’d take suggestions if anyone has them.
Once that’s over, we start into the beginning of one of the last (of three, I think) books in the series.
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So i am guessing their is gonna be a whole thing with the true based on emmy and politics or with increasing the number of meta humans/ adding ti the gene pool which could lead to a greater number of low power metas.
Also how long has the doc been waiting to say that XD lol.
Also need to build or get some anti-teleporter tech (besides the one in the base).
I recommend some kind of incapacitator bots. Stasisfield, Taser or similiar with vitalsmonitor and a dose of tracking nanobots.
Hmm, that is odd. Either Dr. Griffin was working under cover in the lab in Jersey. Or she got sped into the agency to have a badge now.
Undercover is an interesting idea because Lim had no clue about the lab she was in.
My thought was that she was put through some sort of accelerated program to make her permanently or temporarily an FBI agent.
Awesome chapter, I’ve really liked this book! I would kinda like to see a story from the perspectives of either Vaughn, Jaclyn, Izzy, or Marcus.
Let’s see, we have gotten:
The original Rocket
We have not gotten much at all on Chris. I think he might be a different take on Nick so not sure how much should go there. But we have not seen him.
Travis is very neglected, whereas Marcus and Vaughn while not in spotlight have been around enough to get a feel for them.
So I probably would ask for more fill in on Travis since he is a bit neglected. He wanted to be a leader. Got rejected by the Air Force academy (idiots) And he dated Rachel. The most I get from him is he is sometimes a bit insensitive how much Nick does or has done. And that might be a disservice to him.
Also i Hope Chris gets his own beroic identity soon.
How about a story from Nick’s father’s POV, his block finally breaking down. Or a Sean story having to, finally, deal with his half-sister.
Sean is not a bad choice. I didn’t really like him much till just after the battle of NY and he wanted to fly home and came back defeated knowing he couldn’t get there and help his sister.
It was like his jerk persona cracked and you realized he really is terrified for his family. When he got to Castle Rock he was much more subdued. Being almost friendly with the league and his fighting along side them he felt like someone competent trying to fit in. And he was clever too.
It would be cool to see his perspective.
Having Nick’s father’s block break down is too important for a short story—which means that that will eventually show up in the main story.
Sean’s a definite possibility.
I wouldn’t mind the occasional short story with the original Legion. 1st Rocket would be good, maybe about him creating the first suit. Was it created before or because of WW2?
I probably won’t be doing anything with the 1st Rocket in short stories until after the last book, and here’s why: one of the next three books is going to be about half current Rocket and half 1st Rocket. So, people will be seeing a lot of him in the not too distant future.
A story about the first Rocket suit would be interesting though. It does predate WW2.
Sean, for reasons mentioned. The arc where he was introduced was a favorite of mine and he was an awesome “love to hate” character. Chris is also another good one imo. He isn’t another Nick imo. He fills in as the Rocket and works with members of the team we as an audience hadn’t interacted with in a while. I’d like to see that team dynamic with someone in the Rocket suit doing things WAY differently than Nick would. Less analytical and more unrefined lol. Just a thought.