Monster in the Mirror

Chapter 49

The first thing I noticed as I started regaining my senses was that I couldn't move at all. The second was the smell of metal and blood: which wasn't a pleasant combo. The third and most noticeable thing was this god-awful migraine that felt as if a Hunter was trying to claw its way out of my skull. With a pained hiss, I squinted my eyes open, only to immediately shut them again as a blinding white light assaulted my vision.

Once I had my bearings, I tried again and found I was pinned to a metal table in a large metal room that looked like a surgery area. 'Great, what have they done to me NOW?' I wondered in distain as I twisted the cramps out of my neck and tried to figure out a way to get out of my restraints. "How many times must we go over this doc? No man should have survived this, the virus should've made her into a screeching, slobbering, freak of nature. Which is why you're going to butcher this thing and find out WHY." a voice from somewhere above me snarled, who after a few seconds I recognized as Colonel Rooks: a Blackwatch leader that was almost as big of a douchebag as Captain Cross.

'So, they've sent their loyal dogs to retrieve, have they? Well, the only thing they are going to be retrieving is an ass-whooping.' I thought with a humorless smirk as I went back to listening to the conversation going on above me. "And if you don't like the results Colonel Rooks, what then?" the voice that made chills run marathons up and down my spine questioned as I suddenly tried even harder to break free of my Titanium bonds. "MacManus is once again Gentek's property now. Things go sour: you burn the room, simple as that." the Colonel replied nonchalantly, as if he were talking about the weather, making me grit my teeth in anger.

'You certainly grew a pair of balls now that I can't move, but I wonder if that will change once I rip your guts out.' I growled to myself as my body suit writhed and wriggled as I tried to find a weakness in my restraints without alerting my captors. "Burn the…NO! Absolutely not! I don't know if you brainless imbeciles have noticed, but this specimen is priceless! She could be the answer to the future of science." McMullen protested in outrage as the sounds of items crashing to the floor sounded where their voices where coming from. "The Colonel said burn it. That's what you're going to do, YOU created this mess: you're going to clean it up." a cocky voice snarled, making an animalistic growl dominate my voice box as I recognized the owner immediately.

'Lieutenant Riley. Of course you had to join in the fun: what? Did the Higher-Ups get tired of you kissing their ass?' I thought as I had flashbacks of the man that gave the term 'asshole' a whole new definition: and all of them brutal that bordered on the extreme. Because let's just say, in Riley's book: if you weren't human, (and even if you were): you step out of line or even breathe without being commanded, he would get creative with his punishments. Hitting me in the head with a sledgehammer was a personal favorite pastime of his.

"I will not be reprimanded by the likes of you two! It's time to begin." McMullan said as the room above me went quiet as a 'whirring' noise filled the room before all of my restraints suddenly retreated, letting me slide off the table and drop to the floor. 'Christ, what did they do?! I feel drunk.' I thought as I shook the dizziness away and staggered to my feet and took in my surroundings. "Since ZEUS has been on its own for quite some time, we should reassess its abilities. Something simple at first, a mere survival stimulus." McMullen said through a speaker, as if I couldn't already hear what he was talking about. 'So I'm back to being a Gladiator…lovely.' I thought with distain as I glared harshly at the trio staring down at me from behind a large glass window.

'Very well Gentek, I'll play along.' I thought as my attention was drawn to a large metal door rising upwards: revealing a dozen or so infected humans that appeared to be starving. With a sigh, I cracked my back before allowing my body suit to reveal itself from my torn-up and destroyed Commander's costume. With ear-piercing shrieks, the infected humans staggered and sprinted at me, oblivious to the planetary gaps in power. Meeting them half-way, I punched the lead infected in the face, breaking its jaw and making it backflip into the air before I landed a swift kick to its chest as it fell back down: making it blow backwards and crash into its friends at supersonic speed. The force was enough to split all of them apart as they smashed into different sides of their holding pen.

"This is your ONE warning, let me out of here before I rip you apart!" I snarled at their surprised faces before the pair of Blackwatch soldiers turned to McMullen with agitated looks on their faces. "You have what you need, Doctor McMullen?" Rooks questioned as the man in question looked at him in annoyance. "We must learn all we can about the subject, Colonel. Who knows what she has learned since her escape!" he protested as he opened two more doors: these containing more infected humans as well as a pair of Hunters. 'Well, shit.' I thought as I back-flipped out of the Hunters' reach and focused my attention on the other infected for now.

Dashing at the miniature pack, I spun around and elbowed one of the bigger ones into its buddies before quickly ducking under the smaller Hunter's claws. As it lunged over me, it was fooled into tearing apart the other infected instead of me. 'Good thing they're stupid.' I thought as I changed my left arm into a large, heavy and intimidating shield: just in time to catch the slightly-larger Hunter in the mouth as it tried to bite me while my back was turned. Spinning around, I threw the Hunter into its companion, knocking them both backwards and into the wall.

"The raw data we're collecting is incredible! It's nothing like the previous tests!" McMullen remarked as I flipped over one Hunter and used the momentum to kick the other one into the table that held me captive. With a whine, it shook its massive head before bounding towards me with an enraged snarl, only to have me grab it by its front leg and throw it headfirst into its friend: sending both of them crashing to the floor in a daze. "If you are impressed with this, you should see what I can do once I get out of here." I mumbled to myself as I looked up at the reason for my living nightmare with a malicious sneer.

"That's enough, the creature is too dangerous! Burn it!" Rooks ordered, to the delight of his sadistic Lieutenant and horror of my creator. "Rooks! You can't do that, she's far too valuable to destroy!" McMullen protested, only to be silenced by the Blackwatch Colonel. "You're stepping out of line McMullen, you may have created the PROTOTYPE, but I AM the one in charge here. Lieutenant Riley: hit the switch." Rooks ordered to an ecstatic Riley, who looked like he was a kid going to Disneyworld for Christmas. "Yes sir. Burn order given by Colonel Douglas Rooks, 0223 hours." Riley said as I saw him write something down on a piece of paper before shoving McMullen out of the way and moved to a switch on the wall. 'You sadistic bastard.' I snarled to myself as I glanced from him and over to the pair of Hunters as they staggered to their feet.

Changing my right arm into the Whipfist, I grabbed hold of the large metal door and yanked it shut: trapping the Hunters back into their cage. As I turned back around, I was barely able to cloak myself in hardened biomass just as the room around me became engulfed in fire. Though the flames themselves didn't hurt much, they still gave my body suit a charred look as I quickly dropped to the floor as the flames disappeared. "Get Clean-Up and Recovery in there. Make sure it's dead this time." Rooks ordered as I lay on the floor, playing dead just as the door to the exit opened and sealed again. "Damn you Colonel, this is no place for your inconsiderate acts of barbarism!" McMullen snapped as the sound of someone being punched reached my ears.

"Don't get sanctimonious with me you fucking ghoul. I've read your experiment reports on this thing." Rooks retaliated in a no-nonsense tone as the footsteps came closer. Judging by the sound: there were two Blackwatch soldiers approaching me warily, as they very well should. 'That's right…keep coming. Just a little closer.' I thought with malice as I was suddenly roughly kicked in the ribs by the one on my left. "No signs of life sir." the one who kicked me reported like the obedient dog he was. "Make sure, I don't need this abomination escaping again." Rooks commanded as the one on my right lifted his Assault Rifle and shot me three times in the face and several times in the chest.

'Why do they always go for the face?!' I thought in dismay as I struggled to keep still and keep the virus from healing the new injuries: to further keep up the act. 'Okay, enough of this shit.' I thought as I suddenly lunged forward and knocked my assailant's weapon out of his hands before jumping up on his shoulders. "S-SHIT!" he cried as he tried to shake me off while his partner tried to shoot me off. "Send your friends my regards." I growled before thrusting my clawed hand through the back of his skull, sending dark-red blood, bone and brain matter through his shattered gas mask before allowing the virus to travel through my arm and dissolve the soldier's body: consuming him in a matter of seconds and healing my wounds.

"Hello." I said cutely to the remaining soldier, who apparently shit himself in terror. "S-Stay back you! I-I mean it!" he stuttered at he raised his shaking gun at me. "Oh, I'm sure you do: thing is, I really don't care." I said nonchalantly as I calmly walked over to him until he trapped himself against one of the metal doors. "Get away from me! OH GOD, HELP ME!" he screamed as he dropped his weapon and curled into a ball on the floor as I came to a stop a few feet away from him. With a wicked smirk, I pulled my hood up over my head: shadowing everything from my nose up in thick, black shadows until nothing but my glowing orange eyes could be seen.

Dashing forward with blinding speed, I snatched hold of the cowardly soldier by the collar of his vest: loving his near-constant trembles of terror as I gave him an evil toothy grin before throwing him forward through the air. As his shrieks ran through the metal room, I watched as he literally crashed through the large metal door and right into the jaws of the trapped Hunters: where the sounds of crunching and feasting sounded soon after. Cocking my head to the side, I glared at McMullen as well as the other two from under my hood, just as Rooks regained his composure as he started throwing orders at Riley and the scientist.

"Damnit! Release all specimen groups! Do it NOW!" I heard him say as Riley shoved McMullen to the side and rapidly starting throwing switches and pushing buttons as all the doors in the room slowly opened. Turning my attention to them, I narrowed my eyes at at least sixty infected humans and a total of five Hunters: the largest of which was the size of a SUV and was covered in savage-looking scars, broken shackles around its ankles, and seemed to be blind in one eye on account of a large, deep scar that traveled over its eye and ended at the base of its neck.

This Hunter almost dwarfed the others: as if it had been crossbred with something else, but it also could've been the fact that the other Hunters were small: about the size of a Volkswagen Beetle. Keeping my eyes on the Alpha, I waited for it to lunge at me before I changed both my arms into the Hammerfist and grabbed both of its jaws, halting its pounce in an instant. Tightening my grip, I twisted my arms before letting go: sending the Hunter spinning off its feet and landing on its back across the room. Leaping after it, I put all my weight on its chest and used my tendrils to pin its thrashing limbs away from me.

With a solid punch, I silenced its snaps and snarls as I glared viciously into its single eye with an unblinking stare. After several seconds the Hunter whined and stopped thrashing as I got off of it: never breaking eye contact as I did so. Watching the Hunter as it rolled over, I was pleased as it stopped growling and lowered its head at me while staring at the floor: acknowledging the fact that I was stronger than it and was to be obeyed without question. Witnessing this, the smaller, weaker Hunters backed away and stared at the floor as I turned around and walked between them. 'Let's see how you bastards like this.' I thought with a smirk as I glanced at the smaller Hunters before pointing at the screaming infected: sending all four of them charging for the targets in a merciless and messy wolf-pack fashion.

"Shit! Holy shit! They're obeying her! Kill them all! Burn the room!" Rooks yelled as I turned my attention to them for a second before running over to the table and ripped it from the floor with a metallic shriek. "Hey! Blackwatch! Heads up!" I called as I effortlessly lifted the table above my head and looked up at the glass window that the cowards hid behind. "Oh shit!" Riley yelled fearfully as the Hunters finished their task and slowly paced behind me with wide, drooling mouths. Throwing the table, I watched as the glass window was obliterated: leaving nothing to protect the pitiful excuses for humans from me: not like it was doing anything to do so in the first place.

"Okay! You fuckin' come up here! COME ON!" Riley challenged from where he stood with his weapon pointed at me. "Your wish is my command." I replied sarcastically as I jumped from where I stood and into the room above like a grasshopper. As both Rooks and Riley shot at me, I let out a bored yawn before setting my glowing orange eyes at them in a bloodthirsty stare. With a maniacal sneer, I lunged forward in a black and red blur and punched Rooks in the stomach: separating him from his weapon as he smashed into the opposite wall.

"Colonel!" Riley yelled as I turned my attention to him. "You know, it's almost ironic: you beat an innocent kid for fun, now you get to have the favor returned! Isn't that great!" I said cheerfully as Riley ran out of bullets, his gun making an obnoxious 'clicking' noise as he continued to try to shoot me: which already was a waste of time. "You stay the FUCK away from me!" he snarled as he drew an impressive-looking hunting knife that was nearly a foot long. "Now where would the fun in THAT be? You never listened to ME when I said the same thing to you, now did you?" I said as I changed my left arm into the Whipfist and snatched hold of Riley's foot and pulled it out from under him before he could move to attack me.

Once he was down, I pounced on him and sank my claws into him: making a loud, bloodcurdling scream echo in the small control room. Watching him bleed for a while, I leaned forward so my orange eyes stared into his pain-filled brown ones. "Let this be a message to you and the rest of your piece of shit Military branch: you fuck with me, and I'll personally make sure that your end is most unpleasant." I snarled in his face as I changed both my arms into the Blades: snipping him in two like a pair of scissors to a piece of string. Once he was out of the way, I turned my attention back to Rooks as he started to come out of the daze I gave him.

Picking him up by his vest, I watched him struggle in amusement as he tried everything he could to escape. As soon as he spotted Riley however, his efforts tripled as he was overcome by rage at the loss of his Lieutenant and friend. "Riley! You fucking cunt! How dare you?! I'll kill you for this!" he swore as he threw his legs out to try to get me to release my death-grip on him. "Yeah…no you won't. I can't tell you how many times I've heard that, and guess what? I'm still here." I said in a bored tone, which only pissed him off even more as his face turned a deep-purple in rage as he snorted and grunted like an angry bull. "Do your worst, monster! I do NOT fear death!" he snarled as I let out a short laugh before composing myself. "No. But you will." I said as I sent him a friendly wink before letting him go with a minor shove: sending the Blackwatch Colonel stumbling backwards and over the edge of the room I was in just minutes ago.

Even from up here, my sensitive ears picked up the clear sound of his legs snapping as he hit the floor. Glancing over the edge, I watched as Colonel Rooks scooched himself back against the wall as the pack of five Hunters slowly surrounded him before a single growl from the Alpha started the worst possible death for the Blackwatch Colonel as limbs, organs, armor and everything else was strewn around the room as his screams echoed for a second before the sound of gurgling blood replaced his last words.

'Now then, where did you go?' I wondered as I looked around for McMullen, only to find the exit door open and him missing. "Shit! That was my chance to end this! Oh well, now that he knows I'm here, he won't go far." I said to myself as I prepared myself for the undoubtedly long trip back to South Park and to finally become the Savior everyone needed me to be.

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