Resident Evil: A Change In Pace

7. Spencer Mansion - Aftermath

Chapter Seven: The Spencer Mansion - Aftermath

Snafu's Notes: Here we go. With this chapter, we are stepping into the world of Survival Horror. I am following the Gamecube version of Resident Evil with a bit of the classic version mixed in...with a bit of Snafu flair.

Redfield Home - August 6, 1998.

Chris Redfield looked in on his sleeping girlfriend. She was in his bed, dressed in one of his T-shirts and a pair of panties. For the past several days, Jill had nightmares of that fateful night inside that damned mansion. Chris was no different. Only difference was that he did not wake up screaming. Seeing as how Jill was still fast asleep, Chris decided to leave her be.

Walking downstairs, Chris entered his study, but kept the door open. Taking a seat behind his desk, Chris opened the first drawer and pulled out two items. The first was a gun box, containing his father's M1911 pistol, matte black still in working condition. Chris regarded the weapon for a moment. The M1911 pistol had quite a history behind it. The first owner was his grandfather, Callahan Redfield, who had emigrated from Scotland to America. It was issued to him during the Second World War, where he served with the Army, surviving until the end of the war.

The gun was then passed onto his father, Lawrence Redfield, who had carried it with him during his tour in the Navy. Now, it belonged to him. Chris picked it up and held it in his hand for a moment, the weight of the weapon giving him some comfort. Like his father and grandfather, Chris had inherited the weapon.

Chris flipped the gun to the opposite side. Etched into the metal slide was a phrase in Latin - 'si vis pacem, para bellum.'

Translated, it meant, 'if you want peace, prepare for war.'

Chris then put the weapon back in its case and closed the gun case. Once the gun was back in the drawer, he turned to the second item on his desk. A green notebook. Resting nearby was his USP pistol, loaded.

The title of the notebook read DAILY REPORT - CHRIS REDFIELD.

Opening his notebook, Chris produced a pen and began to write.

August 6, 1998

Even though it's been nearly two weeks, I still have nightmares about what has happened on that July night. I've been in combat in my days in the Air Force...seen several of my teammates killed in front of me...and even now I wish to be back in the battlefield instead of that damned mansion.

I guess I should start from the beginning.

It all happened shortly after Rebecca joined S.T.A.R.S. We really didn't think nothing of it. The body of a hiker was found in the forest near the Marble River. The police assumed that she had wandered off of the trail and had a run-in with a bear, since the body had numerous bite marks all over her body. We all had summed it to a bit of bad luck.

God, I wish it was just as that.

Then...reports of whole families living near the forest...reports of whole families being attacked and slaughtered. The bodies were apparently eaten. Even more weird was that the bite marks appeared to be human. The citizens of the city demanded action. Chief Irons then ordered that the S.T.A.R.S. would work with the regular police in investigating the case.

I pushed myself to the limit, working eighteen-hour shifts, until Barry had to order me to get some rest. Claire wanted to come and visit, but I told her to remain in Stone Ville. The people who had lived near the forest began to arm themselves, as did most of the people in the city. The Kendo Gun Shop made some serious cash in the wake of the 'cannibal murders.'

On top of that, Chief Irons was acting pretty strange. It became the gossip of the R.P.D. Some said that he was starting to crack under the pressure of trying to find out who was responsible. Come to think about it, I heard from one of the detectives who was passing his office, that he was screaming at one of his secretaries who was only cleaning his office. After kicking out his secretary, he remained in his office for two days. I never really did like that fat fuck, given how I've seen him eye Jill in the past.

On top of that, Irene - Irons' chief secretary - had pulled me to the side and let me in on a bit of information. As it turns out, Chief Irons is an avid art lover, and has acquired several pieces of art. Pieces of art which cost a hell of a lot more than what he makes on a police chief's salary. Now that she mentioned, it, I haven't thought about it but the storage room across from Irons' office held some pieces of art. I had shrugged it off as originally the owners of the art museum had forgotten to pick up their remaining pieces.

So I sent in an inquiry into Irons' background to a contact I had with the F.B.I. Haven't gotten it back yet. Typical government efficiency. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Back to the matter at hand.

We had narrowed down where the attacks were coming from in the Raccoon Forest. Wesker had sent in Bravo Team to neutralize the situation, while Alpha Team was placed on standby.

*&^

[Flashback]

Raccoon Police Department - July 24, 1998

Chris sat inside the cargo area of the R.P.D. helicopter. He was alone with his thoughts. He was also dressed in his standard S.T.A.R.S. uniform - the white long-sleeved T-shirt with the insignia of the Special Tactics and Rescue Service etched onto the sleeves, the sleeves themselves rolled to the elbows, military-grade dark blue cargo pants, and combat boots. The shirt was concealed by his S.T.A.R.S. *- issued green combat vest. On his knees, he had on a pair of kneepads. In a leg holster, was his Samurai Edge. The vest contained two knife cases, mementos from his days in the Air Force. The knife case situated on his front left shoulder had a Bowie Knife, while the back case contained his personal favorite - a custom Mercworx Goliath knife with a slightly longer blade. His pair of fingerless gloves were on the seat next to him.

"Thought I'd find you here."

Chris opened his eyes. Standing in the open hatch, was Jill. Like Chris, she was dressed in her own S.T.A.R.S. uniform - a short-sleeved blue shirt with shoulder harnesses secured by several straps, blue military-grade pants and combat boots. Her beret with the S.T.A.R.S. insignia was in her hand. Her own Samurai Edge was secured in a hip holster.

"Am I that obvious?" Chris asked.

Jill hopped into the chopper, seated on the opposite side of her boyfriend. "You can say it's one of your more enduring traits," she replied.

Chris gave her a small smile. Then his face gotten serious. "I got a very bad feeling about this," he confided. "This whole thing stinks to high heaven."

"You too? I also got a bad vibe about this," Jill said. "Enrico and the rest of Bravo Team should have been back hours ago."

"I wouldn't count Marini out. He's as tough as they come," Chris pointed out. "But Rebecca's still green. In a way, she reminds me of Claire."

"You shouldn't worry," Jill said. "'Becca's got Marini and Bravo Team backing her up. She'll be fine."

"Wish I could share your sentiment," Chris replied. "Wesker's been acting kinda weird, and Irons has gone nuts."

Before Jill could reply to her boyfriend's comment, the helipad's door swung open, and Alpha Team came piling through, being led by Wesker. All of them were clad in their S.T.A.R.S. uniforms.

"...and does somebody know where the hell is Redfield and Valentine?" Wesker was saying.

"Right here," Jill called out.

Wesker looked up and saw both Chris and Jill inside the chopper. "Oh."

"What's going on?" Chris asked.

"Game time, Redfield. We're going in," Wesker said as Brad got into the cockpit and the others began to pile in. "We're to assist Bravo Team and find the source of the attacks. Last known position of Bravo's chopper is in the Arklay Forest."

[End Flashback]

En route to Bravo Team's last known location, Wesker had said that their chopper had some sort of engine trouble and had went down. Normally if we lose contact with each other, a distress signal is automatically enabled. Funny how Bravo's distress signal wasn't enabled until after nearly 24 hours the chopper had went down. That looked suspicious. But I kept my mouth shut about it. Something in my gut was telling me that Wesker had something to hide.

Sometimes, I really hate being right.

The streets of Raccoon City soon gave way to the Raccoon Forest. Five minutes into the flight, our searchlights soon came upon the missing chopper. We landed and found the body of Kevin still strapped in his seat. His throat had been ripped out, his hand missing. Joseph found said hand, still gripping his pistol several yards off, completely mangled.

Joseph...damn.

They came out of the tall grass...swarmed Joseph. Joseph took three of them down, but there were too many. Joseph was torn apart. I can still hear his screams. Jill...she looked so petrified, firing off her gun even as it clicked empty. I grabbed her, told her to run. She shook out of her shock, and reloaded her gun.

We made a break for the chopper, only to find that Bad had already taken off. He had seen Joseph being mauled to death and true to his nickname, left us. Bastard.

Wesker shouted for us to head for the mansion for cover. Since I was the better shooter on Alpha Team, I told Jill and Barry to go on and I will cover their escape. Thank God I always carried that machete with me. I heard the door slam as Wesker, Jill and Barry made it inside, leaving me with the devil dogs from hell.

I took down three with my Samurai Edge. Then I ran out of ammo. Two remained. I'm not really a religious man, but I can tell you that it was by the grace of the Almighty that Christopher Redfield survived. Of course, I needed to get inside that house. But being a prodigy of my caliber, I managed to outsmart the dogs and killed them off as well with my Goliath. One thing about a blade is that it never needs reloading. After looking around, I found an open window that led into the dining room. I slipped in and slammed the window shut behind me.

I...came across Kenneth's body. He was...eaten. I always thought that I would never see the day. But he was eaten by a fucking zombie. The walking dead. Then it came after me...or tried to. I decapitated it with my Goliath, but the head was still alive. I retrieved Kenneth's gun and several clips before putting a bullet into its head.

Kenneth. Damn.

I backtracked towards the main hall. There, I found Jill.

*&^

[Flashback]

Jill returned to the main hall following her narrow brush with death. She looked at the shotgun in her hands, thinking how close she was to getting herself killed over the weapon she was currently holding.

On the opposite side of the hall, the double doors opened and Chris stepped through, gripping his Beretta in both hands, looking worse for the wear, ready for anything.

“CHRIS!”

Almost by reflex, Chris raised his gun, but calmed down when he recognized Jill, thankful that he saw someone still alive. “Jill!”

They met at the base of the stairs. Jill dropped the shotgun and threw her arms around her lover, thankful that he was alive. “I thought...I thought those dogs got you,” she sputtered, kissing his face before releasing her partner. “How...?”

“I got in through an open window inside the dining room,” Chris replied. “I got lucky. I used up all of my ammo in my gun, leaving me with my machete.” He looked at the Beretta and the two clips in his hand. “I got this from Kenneth. He's dead.”

“Wesker's gone missing,” Jill said. “Barry went off after he saved my life.” She looked at the shotgun in her hands. “I almost died because of this damn gun. I set off a trap when I picked this up. If Barry wasn't there to save me...”

“Jill,” Chris cut in, “there's something wrong with this house. We better stick together here on out. If there are survivors of Bravo Team, then we better find them and hope Brad can get us the hell out of here.”

Jill nodded. “You're right. We'll kill Brad later You checked upstairs yet?”

Chris shook his head. “No. You?”

“No. At least you can drop them with a bullet to the head.”

“Okay. Cover me.”

Jill nodded as she raised the shotgun, following Chris up the stairs, the deadly weapon aimed towards the door in case anyone who was not human came running through. Chris reached the landing and quickly urned left, ascending the second set of stairs, heading for the second floor's only set of double doors.

Upon entering through the portal, they found themselves inside the dining room. Or rather, the second floor balcony overlooking the dining room.

Also present, were two zombies. Within seconds, both fell to the floor in a heap, the victims of two well-placed shots to the head, destroying the brain and bone.

The only thing that was of interest was a small statue, holding a gem. A statue that was near a part of the railing that had broken.

Chris looked at the statue and the gem. “Hmm...that looks interesting.”

Before Jill could comment, the double doors opened and closed, followed by a throaty moan that sent chills down Chris and Jill's spines.

They both turned towards the doors.

It was Forest Speyer.

A zombified Forest Speyer.

Chunks of flesh was missing from his arms and his cheek, the mouth itself was gone, exposing his teeth, his ribcage was even exposed. One eye was hanging from its stem as he looked at Chris and Jill with his remaining good eye, which was covered with a thin layer of mucus, making it solid white.

In an instant, Jill had the shotgun raised as Forest made a beeline towards the partners.

“Jill, NO!” Chris shouted as he kicked the barrel, just as Jill pulled the trigger, causing the shot to do wild, the shotgun pellets embedding themselves into the wall. Chris then drop kicked Forest in the chest, causing the zombified S.T.A.R.S. member to stumble back several steps before falling on his back.

“What did you do that for?!” Jill shouted.

Chris pointed to the two bandoliers that were cris-crossed across Forest's chest. “Look. Grenades and Burst Rounds. One bad shot and you would have blown us sky-high. Someone wanted us to die, so they booby-trapped Forest.”

By this time, Forest had risen to his feet.

Chris, in the meantime, had unsheathed his Bowie knife. Tossing it in his hand so that he was holding the blade, he took careful aim at the one spot where it wasn't covered in bombs and grenades.

His head.

“Sorry, Forest. Nothing personal,” he said before he threw the knife.

THWACK!

Chris's aim was dead-on as the Bowie's blade embedded itself into Forest's skull. Forest fell to the ground in a heap. He didn't get back up.

With Forest finally put to rest, Chris began to search his body. First, he gently undid the bandoliers and placed them to the side. Then he began to search Forest's body.

“Chris, what are you doing?” Jill asked.

“OSP,” Chris replied. “On-site procurement. We don't know what's going on in this nuthouse, and going outside is not an option, we're going to need all of the bullets and weapons we can find. Here.” Chris tossed Jill Forest's Samurai Edge. Jill caught it and tucked it into her belt.

Chris gently rolled Forest's body over. “Hello...”

“What?” Jill asked.

Chris gently plucked Forest's bazooka from its back holster. With a sigh, Chris said, “We'll put this to good use, Forest.” After going through Forest's body, he retrieved the burst rounds from the bandoliers and a couple of extra clips for the Beretta. Turning to Jill, he said, “I'll trade ya – the shotgun for the bazooka.”

“Deal.”

Once they got everything taken care of, they decided to move out.

[End Flashback]

*&^

Glad to know that my training Jill wasn't a complete waste. She told me that Wesker had disappeared and Barry had rescued her from being crushed to death. This was before we ran into each other inside the main hall. In the next hall, three more zombies awaited. Once they were taken care of we checked the two doors. Both were locked, which meant we had to go downstairs. Aside from two more zombies in the hall, there was a door by the stairs. Turned out that it was a supply and storage room.

That was where Jill and I found Rebecca.

(*&

[Flashback]

The last thing Chris was expecting was to get sprayed in the face with insect repellant.

"WAUGH!!!" Chris yelled as he stumbled backwards, falling over the body of the dead zombie, its head blown completely off, landing on his butt. "WHAT THE HELL?!"

Holding an empty can of bug spray in one hand, and looking genuinely embarrassed about spraying Chris in the face, was Rebecca Chambers. The youngest of the S.T.A.R.S. unit at the age of eighteen, she was like Chris, a prodigy, with a degree in medical science. Chris took a shine to her. Fortunately, Jill wasn't the jealous type, as she knew that Chris only wanted her.

"Oh, shit! Chris!" she cursed as both her and Jill helped the blinded man to his feet. "Oh, Chris! I'm so sorry! I thought you were one of them! Jill, help me get him inside."

Inside the room, Rebecca treated Chris's injury. Using a bottle of water she had retrieved from her pouch, she rinsed Chris' eyes out.

"It was only bug spray," the young medic explained. "I kinda ran out of bullets. You should be fine in a couple of minutes."

Chris groaned in response.

"What happened here, Rebecca?" Jill asked.

"I've been hiding out here all day," Rebecca explained. "I thought that it would be safer here, but instead, I wound up walking into 'Night of the Living Dead.'"

"Can you tell us what's happened so far?" Jill asked as she cradled Chris' head in her lap.

Rebecca nodded. For the next twenty minutes, she told the two everything that has happened to her in the past 48 hours. From investigating a zombie-infested train to teaming up with a framed ex-Marine in order to stop a madman from unleashing the virus onto the city. Suffice to say, both Chris and Jill were impressed with the young rookie's courage. Rebecca also gave them vital information about the T-virus. Created by James Marcus by combining mutated leech DNA and the Progenitor Virus, it was the virus responsible for creating the number of walking dead seen inside the mansion.

"Is there anyone from Bravo here?" Jill asked.

Rebecca shook her head. "I lost contact with the others a long time ago. Edward...Edward's dead. He turned into...into a zombie back on the train...I had no choice..."

Chris, having risen to a seated position, nodded in understanding. "Don't worry about that. In any case, you have done Edward a great service. No one deserves to be cursed to that existence. Jill and I found Forest the same way as well. I had to put him down as well."

"We found Kevin's body inside the chopper," Jill continued. "We lost Joseph on the way in. Chris found Kenneth's body."

"What was left of him, anyway," Chris added. "Here. You're gonna need this," he said, handing Rebecca some ammo for her Beretta.

"Thanks," Rebecca said, accepting the ammo. "So...what do we do now?"

"We find any survivors, call for Brad, then get the hell out of here," Chris said firmly.

"Sounds like a plan," Rebecca said.

[End Flashback]

At least I didn't have to worry about Rebecca. After what she had been through, she could most certainly hold her own. I'd say in the next room over we found out some interesting information about what we were facing, as well as a new and dangerous enemy.

[Flashback]

The next room contained a bed, a desk and a closet. On the floor, was a body, long since dead, its head missing.

“We can rest for a moment in here,” Chris said as he, Rebecca and Jill made sure that the room was cleared. “How much ammo you got left?”

Jill inspected her reserves. “Two clips left.”

Chris fished out three more clips for her Beretta and handed them over. “Here. These should help.”

“Thanks,” Jill replied as she pocketed the ammo.

THUMP.

The sound came from the closet. As the two women and Chris turned towards the closet, its double doors swung open, revealing another zombie.

Only thing was, that this zombie was more different that the ones already encountered inside the house. Its skin had taken on a more reddish hue. The one thing that stuck out was the claws on its fingers.

With a half-moan/half-roar, the enhanced zombie made a beeline towards Jill and Rebecca. Rebecca had literally hopped over the bed, while Jill had narrowly avoided the wild claw swing to her head, the claws raking her shoulder harnesses, leaving Jill unscathed.

Chris reacted quickly. Before the zombie could attack Jill yet again, Chris had reached behind his back and drew his Goliath. Brandishing the blade in one hand, he got the super zombie's attention. “Hey! Ugly! Over here!”

The zombie then turned to Chris, and charged.

Once the zombie was close enough, Chris reacted. Jill watched as Chris thrusted upward with the Goliath, the blackened carbon steel slicing through rotting flesh, cartilage and bone as if it were a hot knife through butter, starting from the bottom of its jaw before ending at its skull.

To make sure that the zombie was dead, Chris yanked his machete out and decapitated it.

The zombie fell to the ground in a heap, the head rolling to a stop inside the closet.

Jill looked at the downed zombie, then back at Chris, who was wiping the blade onto the bedsheets. “Thanks.”

Chris sheathed his weapon. “That's two you owe me, Jill. You okay?”

Jill nodded. “I'm fine.”

Rebecca, in the meantime, looked at the zombie. “This is new. I never seen a zombie move so fast before. What the hell happened here?”

“Hmm...what's this?” Chris said as he noticed a leather-bound book on the desk. Picking it up, he began to leave through the pages. “Hey, I found something. It's a journal. Maybe it can shed some light as to what the fuck is going on here.”

With Jill and Rebecca looking over his shoulder, Chris reached the last entries of the book and began to read out loud.

“'9 May 1998 – had poker night inside the Piano Lounge with Steve from Research and those two guys from the Security Department, Scott and Alias. Steve was the big winner, but I think the fucking scumbag was cheating.'”

Jill and Rebecca managed to crack a smile. The first smile she ever made since entering the mansion.

That smile faded as Chris continued to read. “'10 May – Edwards, one of the leading researchers, assigned a new creature for me to look after. I swear, the Goddamned thing looked like a skinless gorilla. She also told me to feed it live animals. I let loose a pig inside the creature's pen and damn near lost my lunch as I watched the creature play with it. It ripped the pig's legs off and gutted the pig before it started eating.'”

"'Skinless gorilla?'" Rebecca repeated. "Must have been an Eliminator. Billy and I ran into a couple back at the other lab."

Jill blanched. “That's sick.”

“Yeah,” Chris agreed. “No kidding.” He read the next entry. “'11 May – Scott came rushing into my room at about five this morning. Scared the shit out of me too. Said something about an accident in the labs. He was wearing a protective suit and handed me another one, telling me to put it on. Something told me that something like this was going to happen. I swear, those damn Research bastards work 24/7, even on holidays.'”

Chris flipped the page. “'12 May – Been wearing this goddamn spacesuit since yesterday morning, and now my skin feels grimy and itchy all over. Fuckin' guard dogs been looking at me funny, so I decided not to feed 'em. Screw those mangy mutts.'” He turned the page. “'13 May – My back feels itchy all over, so I went to the infirmary. Doc Guillory placed a big bandage on my back and told me that I didn't need to wear the freakin' spacesuit anymore. Finally...all I want to do right now is sleep.'”

Chris turned the page. Both he and Jill noticed that the writing was starting to get even more and more sloppier. “'14 May – Found another big-ass blister on my foot. Hurts like hell when I walked. I ended up dragging my bad foot to the dogs' pen. Those mutts had been quiet all day. I found out later that some of them have escaped. If the big bosses finds out about this, they'll have my head on a silver platter.'” He turned the page. “'15 May – still feel like shit, but decided to head into the city anyway to visit Nancy. I was stopped by some of the guards, who said that no one is allowed to leave the grounds. All of the phones have been confiscated, pulled right out of the jacks! What kind of bullshit is this?!'”

“Okay,” Jill said. “This is bad.”

Chris nodded and continued to read. “'16 May – I heard from Alias that the guards shot and killed a researcher as he tried to escape the grounds. My body feels so damn hot and itchy all of the time, like I got a fucked-up case of the flu! And just now, a piece of rotten flesh fell off my arm when I scratched at the swelling! What the fuck is happening to me?'”

Chris turned the page. Now the writing looked like as if a pre-schooler had written the final entries. “'19 May – fever gone, but itchy. Hungry and eat doggie food. 21 May – Itchy itchy Scott came ugly face so killed him. Tasty.'”

Chris turned to the final entry. “'Itchy...'”

Jill finished for him. “'Tasty.'”

They both exchanged worried glances before turning to the dead zombie on the floor. As Chris closed the journal, a scrap sheet of paper fell from the pages. Jill snatched it from the air and began to read it. It was some sort of communique.

“Chris, listen to this,” Jill began. “'We have new information regarding those 'beings.' They may appear to be dead, but in fact they are able to return to life. However, there are ways to prevent them from becoming active again. Currently there are two known methods to cease their resurrection – incineration or destruction of the head. If further methods are discovered, they will be notified immediately. Meanwhile to those of you who still have the will to live, oil has been placed on the first floor of the mansion. Take as much as you need. You'll need something to light it with, which you'll need to find by yourself.'”

“So we need to either smash their heads or barbecue them so they won't come back to life,” Rebecca said. She looked at the downed super zombie on the ground. "Otherwise...we deal with that."

“Seems that way,” Jill replied. She patted to the bazooka that was slung over her shoulder. “I got enough incendiary rounds as well as some grenades.”

“Looks like I'll make do with the shotgun,” Chris said.

[End flashback]

With Rebecca on my team, I felt a bit better about our chances for surviving. Of course, that mood took a serious swan dive towards rock bottom when we discovered several notes and documents which helped shed some light on this place.

The mansion was owned by Umbrella, more specifically, one of its founders, Ozwell E. Spencer. In the 1960's, he had hired an architect by the name of George Trevor to design and build the mansion, complete with its many secrets that only Spencer and Trevor know about, including some of the traps seen inside. Spencer, as it seems, had an ulterior motive. He told Trevor that the mansion would be used not only as his summer home, but as a resort for high-ranking Umbrella personnel.

But the mansion held its own dark secret that not even Trevor himself knew about. A secret that Spencer was willing to kill for.

Spencer went on to invite Trevor's wife and daughter to the mansion. They would soon disappear several days later upon their arrival. Underneath the mansion, was a hidden laboratory, where Spencer had used Trevor's wife and daughter for his twisted research. Trevor's wife died, but his daughter, Lisa...became a monstronsity, one that Jill and I had ran into during our time inside the mansion. She especially went after Jill and Rebecca, for reasons I do not know.

As for Trevor himself, he would starve to death within the corridors of the mansion. Jill and I would find his remains in front of his grave marker. Spencer had set him up to die and to make his family disappear in order to tie up loose ends.

It was also the first time I've seen Jill actually break down in tears. We were exploring the east wing of the mansion when we came inside a room. Inside was the body of a scientist, dead for several weeks. He had blown his own brains out in a successful attempt to keep from becoming one of the undead. On his desk, was a suicide note, written to his girlfriend.

[Flashback]

Jill noticed the folded sheet of paper resting on the desk. Curious, she picked it up and scanned the name. It was addressed to a woman named Alma. She unfolded the letter and began to read it.

My dearest Alma,

I hope that this letter will find you, but even now, I fear that will not be possible. The simple fact that if you manage to receive this letter is both joyful and sad for me. So please, for my sake, be calm and read this. I was unable to reach you sooner, mainly because of my job and because of some guy in the sunglasses. Umbrella...the company that I've been working for...they head-hunted me, recruited me to work in their labs outside the city.

Last month...there was an accident inside the labs. The virus we were studying...researching...it had escaped. All of my colleagues, or most of them, have been killed. But death was not the end. The virus revived them, not living, but in fact, the walking dead. I can hear them outside my locked door. Wailing...moaning...trying to get inside. But they can't. They're wandering around the mansion, no sign of intelligence in their eyes. That damned virus has completely robbed them of their humanity...love...joy...sorrow...even fear and humor...for all eternity.

The test came back positive for me. Yes, Alma. I'm also infected. I have the same symptoms that my co-workers have before they succumbed to the virus. I did everything that I could, but I could only delay the inevitable, if only for a few days. The memories of the days that I've spent with you...

What is most frightening is that as each day passes, the virus takes hold and I forget about you more and more. Which is why I came to this decision. I will have chosen a peaceful death, rather than to become one of the walking dead. Within the hour, I will have entered my eternal sleep. Please understand my decision...and please forgive me.

Eternally yours,

Martin Crackhorn

Rebecca, in the meantime, was inspecting the body. "Self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. Not much of his brain left. Death was instant."

Chris then turned to Jill, hearing her sniffle. "Jill? Valentine? You okay?"

Jill took a seat on the bed. She wiped her eyes with the back of her gloved hand. "I...I can't help but to think...his last thoughts were of his lover before he pulled the trigger."

Chris gently took Crackhorn's note from Jill's hand. After reading it, he folded it back up and placed it onto the desk. "He was one of the lucky ones. No one should suffer that fate." He then turned to Jill. Grabbing on her arms, he gently lifted her to her feet. "Jill...do you trust me?"

Jill looked at her partner/lover and nodded. "I trust you," she replied.

"Do you trust me enough when I say that we're gonna find Barry and the others and get the hell out of here?"

Again, Jill nodded.

"I can't have you breaking down now, Valentine," Chris said, placing one hand on her shoulder. "I need both you and Rebecca to watch my back. Okay?"

"Yeah...yeah..."

"I got my sister waiting for me, and you got your father. That's more than enough inspiration to get us through this, okay? We do not have the option of failing. Okay?"

"You're right, Chris," Jill said, her voice more firm. "You're right."

[End Flashback]

Jill managed to bring her A-game to the plate. But I did see her slip Crackhorn's suicide note into her pocket. I guess it was some kind of a motivator for her to stay alive.

We found Richard near the mansion's attic. He was in pretty bad shape. Said something about being bitten by a giant mutant snake. Turns out the big-ass snake in question was guarding one of three keys that allowed us to enter the garden. We managed to save Richard's life, thanks to Rebecca pilfering a vial of serum and several syringes from the supply room before we left. I guess that the T-virus also has mutagenic properties when certain organisms are exposed to it.

By the time Alpha Team was called in, the virus thankfully burned itself out, so an airborne contamination was out of the question. That means we can only get infected by direct contact.

It still hurts, remembering those who had died in that cursed place. Richard gave his life in order to save Jill's while they were investigating the Aqua Ring underneath the guardhouse. From what Jill had told me, he had pushed her out of the way just as the shark attacked, taking him under. Rebecca and I had our hands full with the oversized plant project known as 'Plant 42.' And those bioweapons Umbrella worked on...one of them stuck out in particular for me.

The Hunters.

That was where I saw Jill take out two in rapid succession. I knew she was good, but what I saw was just...wow.

*&^

[Flashback]

THUMP. THUMP. THUMP.

Chris turned around. A wounded Hunter had just rounded the corner.

And it was approaching Jill.

"JILL! BEHIND YOU!" Chris screamed.

Time slowed down as to what had happened next. Jill spun around and saw the Hunter as it picked up speed, ignoring the blood that was pumping from its wounds, it let out a screech as it lunged forward, its intention to decapitate Jill.

Time slowed down as to what had happened next.

Jill jumped backwards, just as the Hunter lunged at her. Jill landed on her shoulders, back bent so that she was looking at her knees, just as the Hunter's claw sailed past where her head was at moments earlier. Showing off her athletic ability, she placed her hands on either side of her head, thrusted her legs upwards and outwards, while pushing herself off the floor with her hands and shoulders, using her own momentum to launch herself into the air feet-first, back arched, until she landed on her feet.

As she landed on her feet from her performing a textbook-perfect rising handspring, otherwise known as a suicide kip-up, she shouted to Chris to throw her his gun.

Chris tossed her one fully-loaded Samurai Edge, which she caught with one hand as she pulled out her own. Spinning around, not realizing that her beret had fallen from her head, she opened fire on the wounded Hunter. Chris counted twelve shots - six from each Beretta, the parabellum rounds tearing into where the lungs would be, right before performing a reverse roundhouse kick, her booted foot crashing into the side of the Hunter's head with brute force, the sickening CRACK revealed that Jill had broken its neck.

A second Hunter had approached from behind Jill. She spun around, using the remaining bullets in her Berettas, right before performing a second reverse roundhouse that caused it to stagger backwards.

Jill then flipped into the air, landing on top of the Hunter, her thighs between its head. A second CRACK was heard as she violently twisted her body to one side, snapping the second Hunter's neck like a twig, right before hopping forward, rolling off the floor, and coming to a stop on her feet.

"Whoa," was all Chris had said.

Jill took a moment to get her heartbeat down as she took in what has happened. She had killed two Hunters in rapid succession. Once her breathing was back under control, she realized that her beret was not on her head. Looking down, she retrieved it and placed it back on her head, before tossing Chris the empty gun.

"Come on," Jill said. "Let's go."

[End Flashback]

The Hunters. According to the files I've read, they were developed for Umbrella's bioweapons division, a combination of reptillian DNA, a fertilized human egg and the T-virus. One hundred percent lethal. And that's not counting the zombified dogs, an even more deadlier version of the Crimson Head, the giant poisonous spiders, and the rabid crows. After cleaning out the mansion of weapons and ammo, we entered the sewers. It was there, we found Barry. Or rather, Jill found Barry. Rebecca and I found Enrico.

Enrico...he was in bad shape. He spoke of a traitor within the S.T.A.R.S., thought it was me. He tried to shoot me, but someone else had put a bullet in his head from behind me and Rebecca. At the same time, Jill and Barry had a final encounter with Lisa Trevor. Jill later told me that she had tossed her mother's skull into the abyss, and Lisa went right after it.

Barry, Rebecca, Jill and myself...we met at the hidden lift that would lead to the Umbrella Laboratory. This time around, we decided to stick together.

Venturing deeper into the labs, we found bodies of zombified test subjects, scientists and security personnel. At least ammo for the Berettas wouldn't be a problem. But then, we discovered the ultimate betrayal, lying inside a conference room.

&^%

[Flashback]

The four surviving S.T.A.R.S. members were taking a much-needed breather inside an empty lab room. A room that looked like a conference room, complete with a projector.

After fighting off the monstrosity that was Lisa Trevor, Jill and Barry had reunited with Chris and Rebecca, Chris looking a bit worse for the wear following his run-in with Plant 42, after being slammed to the ground.

“This is it?” Chris asked the remaining three S.T.A.R.S. members. “Where the hell is Wesker?”

“He bailed after I ran into him back inside the guardhouse,” Jill replied. “He's been acting rather strange lately.”

“You guys, I found something,” Rebecca said, waving a sheet of paper, which turned out to be a fax. The remaining Bravo Team member began to read from the fax. “'X-Day is drawing upon us. Execute the following procedures within one week. Prompt actions are demanded. 1 – Lure S.T.A.R.S. to the estate, and obtain B.O.W.'s raw combat data against S.T.A.R.S. 2 – Collect two embryos of each mutated specimens as samples, excluding the Tyrant. Dispose of the Tyrant. 3 – Ensure complete disposal of the Arklay Laboratory including all personnel and test animals. Disguise their deaths as an accident. When the above procedures are executed, report to headquarters for further instructions.'”

“We've been set up,” Chris growled.

Rebecca nodded. “Umbrella is behind this. Someone led us here.”

Jill slammed her fist onto the desk. “Dammit!”

This little action, however, caused the projector to come on, the lights dimming automatically, the first slide was the title - 'Umbrella Bio-Organic Weapon Official Report'

Jill found the remote and pressed the button. The second slide was entitled MA-39 CERBERUS, complete with a picture of the skinless, zombified guard dogs Chris and the others had seen running wild all over and outside the mansion.

Slide number three was that of the massive Great White Shark that had nearly killed Jill back in the Aqua Ring, codenamed Fi-3 NEPTUNE. The fourth slide was that of the deadly reptilian-like creatures that had tried to decapitate Jill, known as the MA-121 HUNTER.

Jill pressed the button, revealing a massive figure inside a stasis tube, with the codename T-001 TYRANT. Frowning, Jill pressed the button, revealing an empty slide. When she pressed it again, the picture that came up had the caption 'Bio-Weapon Research Institute. R and D Staff.'

Six scientists – one woman and five men stood for the photo. Chris recognized one of the men as William Birkin from his previous encounter several months prior. But one man stood out from all the rest.

The slicked-back blond hair and the expensive shades were a dead giveaway as to who the other person was.

“Son...” Jill muttered.

“...of a...” Rebecca breathed.

“...bitch,” Chris finished.

“It was Captain Wesker all along,” Rebecca said as the projector cut off and the lights came back on. “Wesker set us up.”

Chris and Jill turned to Barry, who was surprisingly quiet throughout this little revelation. “You knew about this!” Jill accused.

Barry nodded. “At least I know now that you four are not on Umbrella's payroll. Enrico and I had our concerns about some of the cops, including Wesker and Chief Irons. Irons is very dirty. How else can he afford all of those crappy pieces of art on his salary?”

“Hmm...” Chris thought for a moment. “You do have a point. But what about Wesker?”

“You saw the slide,” Barry pointed out. “He's a researcher. My guess is that fax regarding X-Day was for him. How else can you explain why we are here?”

“And what about you?” Jill fumed. “How do we know that you're not a stooge on Umbrella's payroll?”

“Because Wesker threatened to kill my family if I didn't cooperate,” Barry replied. “Remember those bugs that Joseph was testing out for the Vice squad? He placed several of them inside the S.T.A.R.S Office. He also bugged Wesker's cellphone and the phones in the office. That's how Enrico and I found out about Wesker's involvement with this mess. We couldn't go to Irons, and half of the R.P.D. is corrupt. Wesker also talked about using my family as a bargaining chip in order to keep me under control. But I managed to get my family out of harms' without him being the wiser. Thanks to some of my buddies down in S.W.A.T. that are honest cops, they got my family out. Sure enough, Wesker did send several gunmen to my place, but they received a nice welcoming committee from a squad of heavily-armed S.W.A.T. Officers. Wesker was duped into thinking that his goons had my family hostage.”

“Clever,” Jill noted.

There was a computer nearby. Using the pilfered username and passcode, Chris brought up the dossiers of the Umbrella Research Team. Sure enough, Wesker's file was among them. From the look of things, he was hired by Umbrella as a teenager, a protege under Ozwell Spencer himself. The appointment to the R.P.D. S.T.A.R.S. was part of his cover to keep an eye on things in Raccoon.

There was a second file entitled Project V, but the clearance was too high. But the third file was that of a list of key R.P.D. personnel on Umbrella's payroll. Chris recognized some of the names, as did the others, as those who had responded to the 'cannibal murders.' Irons himself was at the top of the list. Thankfully, Rita and Branagh were not on the list.

"Oh...heads are going to roll for this," Chris muttered. "But first, Wesker's got some serious explaining to do."

[End Flashback]

&^*

Umbrella had half of the R.P.D. on their payroll, Irons included, as well as some of the senior officers and detectives. Even Elran, who oversaw the Juvenile Crimes' Unit was taking bribes. We both grew up together, and were friends. One of these days, I am going to knock his lights out.

But first things first, Wesker had some serious explaining to do.

Turns out that he was checking out our progress on the video survailiance equipment. You know, the kind that has no audio. So the four of us took the elevator to the main lab. Wesker was waiting for us there. Both he and Barry held me, Jill and Rebecca at gunpoint as he explained his plans. He had planned on ditching Umbrella after getting the desired battle data on its weapons. Then he would go to the competition, and sell them to the highest bidder.

It was a night of surprises, both for Wesker and for myself.

*&^

[Flashback]

Wesker kept his gun trained on Chris, while Barry kept his Colt on Jill and Rebecca. “Poor deluded Chris,” he said. “Such a shame. You could have done great things in Umbrella. Wonderful things. But instead, you wanted to be a cop. But, I got to admit...you were good. The best. Such a shame to waste such raw talent before its prime.” He turned to Barry. “Barry, you can do one more thing for me, and your family will be freed. You will execute Cris and Rebecca...and Jill will get to choose which one will die first.”

Chris thought about it for a moment. “Actually, I got a better idea.” Turning to Barry, he said, “You wanna tell him, or should I?”

Before Wesker knew what was going on, Barry was upon him. One powerful haymaker to the face sent the double-crossing S.T.A.R.S. captain to the floor.

By the time Wesker managed to get the stars out of his eyes, he found himself staring down the business ends of a bazooka, a Remington shotgun, a Colt Python and a Beretta handgun. An impromptu firing squad, should the need arise.

Wesker spat out a wad of blood and glared at Barry. "Congratulations, Burton," He snapped. "You just signed your family's death sentence."

Barry shook his head. "I don't think so, Captain," he replied, addressing Wesker's title with sarcasm in his voice. "I managed to get my wife and girls to safety. Your buddies from Umbrella are now in the city morgue."

At that moment, the confident smirk that was on Wesker's face, despite the bruise on his right eye, vanished.

"We know that you're one of the researchers here," Jill continued. "Those Biodata slides proved it. We know everything, Wesker. About the T-virus outbreak...X-Day...everything. You used S.T.A.R.S. to test out Umbrella's science projects."

"Not all of them," Wesker replied. "The ultimate bioweapon is behind these doors."

"In that case," Barry said as he forcibly spun Wesker around and grabbing a handful of his vest, making sure that he didn't escape, "lead the way."

The sliding doors opened and the four surviving S.T.A.R.S. members and their captive entered the room. The room itself was massive, complete with four rows of empty stasis tubes big enough to hold a human-sized test subject. the tubes were paired off by two, with a walkway in between the second and third rows.

But it was the ten-foot-tall stasis tube located in the back of the room, hooked to a series of computers that had gotten the survivors' attention as they approached, as well as who was inside.

It appeared to be something that even Dr. Frankenstein would be proud of. Nine feet tall, humanoid, incredibly muscular, the skin a pasty white. It had no sexual organs, as they had been surgically removed. The two things that stuck out was the massive heart that was on its upper right pectoral muscle, as well as the myriad of veins running around its face, the lipless mouth locked in a inhuman grimace.

Last, where its left hand should be at, there was a massive, jagged claw, reaching to its knees.

Rebecca looked at the giant of a bioweapon. "So this is the Tyrant?" she asked.

Wesker nodded, his back towards the tube that kept Tyrant in place. "This is it. The ultimate bioweapon."

Rebecca scoffed. "I'm not impressed. I fought something like this several days ago. And that Tyrant had claws on both hands."

"That's a hell of a pump," Barry noted, gawking at the enormous, pumping organ. "What is it? Elephant?"

"No. Rhinoceros," Wesker corrected. He turned to look at it. "Magnificent, isn't it?" He asked as he turned to Chris. "Even someone like you can appreciate something of this magnitude, Chris."

Chris kept his shotgun trained on Wesker. "Can't say that is indeed impressive. But I got to draw the line when your beloved bioweapons tried to kill us."

"I got to say," Wesker replied. "I am very impressed that you made it this far. I even booby-trapped Forest's body with all those grenades and bazooka rounds, and you stopped him without firing a single shot." He then turned to Jill. "And you, Valentine...you were very impressive indeed. It would be a big waste if someone of your...gifts were to die at the hands of Umbrella's bioweapons."

Off Jill's puzzled look, Wesker continued. "You ever wondered why you were much stronger and faster than most of the female and some of the male officers in the police department? Or why you can heal faster than anyone else? Oh, I had my eye on you for a long, long time, Valentine. I purposely recruited you into S.T.A.R.S. so I can watch you flourish. You came here to expose Umbrella, while you should be thanking them for saving your life."

Jill's grip on the Bazooka tightened. "What the hell are you talking about, Wesker?"

"A little side project called 'Project V,' with yourself as Subject Zero. You were sick as a child, remember?" Wesker replied. "You had a extremely rare form of immunodeficiency, in which your immune system was similar to that of an patient with full-blown AIDS. At one point, the doctors said that you would not live to the age of ten. One night, you caught a nasty case of pneumonia. You were six years old at the time. Your parents rushed you to the hospital. The doctors there were sure that you would not survive through the night. And yet...here you are, alive and healthy. All because of Umbrella."

"And what does Umbrella have to do with me?" Jill shot back.

“Your mother,” Wesker replied. “She was a scientist for Umbrella's Medical Division. I believe her name was Miyako Watanabe.” When Jill stiffened, Wesker chuckled. “Amazing what a parent will do in order to make sure that their child survives.”

“No. My mother was not a member of Umbrella!” rebuked Jill.

"Your survival was nothing but a mistake," Wesker replied, looking smug. "One of the treatments for pneumonia is to administer either PCV7 or PPV23. Instead, your mother injected you with a prototype ancillary serum that Dr. Birkin had created from samples of the Progenitor Virus, codenamed P20. The ultimate performance enhancer. The serum did more than just cure your pneumonia, Valentine. Somehow...it has bonded to your DNA. It boosted your immune system, made you faster, stronger."

Jill took a step back. "No...that's not true..." she whispered.

"Jill," Chris began. "Don't listen to him. He's full of shit."

"Really?" Wesker taunted. "It also altered your appearance. Namely, your eyes. Your parents both had brown eyes, correct? Your eyes changed colors as a result of your body bonding with P20. A minor side effect, but still...you do have nice blue eyes." He took a step forward, causing everyone to raise their weapons, save Jill, who had lowered her bazooka as she slowly absorbed what Wesker had told her.

"Jill..." Wesker began. "You don't have to die here. You are the original super-soldier. Imagine the secrets that White Umbrella can unlock. You can reach your full potential without your partner or the others holding you back. All you have to do is come with me."

Jill slowly turned away from Wesker. "I always knew I was different," she whispered as the others kept their guns trained on Wesker. "Now I know why."

Wesker smiled, thinking that he had gotten through to her.

Too bad he did not see one of Jill's gloved hands ball into a fist.

That is until Jill spun around, one gloved fist impacting against Wesker's face causing him to stumble to the ground. If anyone had noticed, Wesker's hand had accidentally struck the keyboard as he fell to the ground.

Jill raised her bazooka once again. "Umbrella may have saved my life...but I don't owe them a damn thing!" she snarled.

Once again, Wesker spat out a wad of blood. "You disappoint me, Valentine," he said as he stood up. "That is very unwise."

He then noticed that Chris and the others were slowly backing away from him, their weapons aimed behind him.

CRACK.

Wesker spun around...

CRASH!

...just as the Tyrant's massive claw smashed through the glass tube and impaled him. Wesker screamed in unbearable pain as the Tyrant hopped down to the ground, ignoring the broken glass on the floor as the bioweapon tossed Wesker's body to the side.

Wesker bled out in mere seconds, the Tyrant having done its damage to Wesker's internal organs. He was dead before he hit the floor.

Then the Tyrant noticed the four humans in the room. Blood dripping from its claw, it began to advance.

&^%

Project V. 'Project Valentine.'

I thought that I have seen and heard it all. But to hear Wesker say that Jill herself owed her survival to Umbrella...I saw the look on Jill's face, and even she did not know. Wesker was right. Jill was indeed the original super-soldier, given what I've seen first hand. The way she had taken down those two Hunters first hand was pretty scary.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Back to the matter at hand.

Wesker got what he deserved. A fitting end to the bastard. But then, we had to deal with the Tyrant. It stalked us, taking claw swipes at us whenever it got close enough. As our ammo reserves gotten lower, I came up with a desperate idea. I shot out one of the stasis tubes, spilling liquid out onto the ground, which was followed by Jill and Rebecca shooting out the power cords.

It worked like a charm. The Tyrant stepped into the liquid, and was electrocuted. As it fell face-down, we got more bad news. The laboratory's self-destruct sequence was initiated, with a twenty-minute countdown until detonation. No rest for the weary, I'm afraid. Fortunately, Wesker's body held the master key.

With time ticking down and Brad running low on fuel, not to mention the rest of the zombies and monsters hot on our trail, we called for the elevator. But the Tyrant was not yet finished...

[Flashback]

The elevator doors slid shut, just as three of the Chimeras reached the elevator. But it was already too late, as the doors were sealed, and the lift rose to the heliport, allowing the four surviving S.T.A.R.S. members to finally rest, if only for the moment.

The lift came to a stop. In an instant, the four S.T.A.R.S. members had their weapons drawn in case anything was waiting for them.

Instead, the only thing that greeted them when the doors opened was the morning sun rising over the Raccoon Forest.

Cautiously, the two men and two women stepped onto the heliport. No helicopter on the pad. But more importantly, unless you counted the headless corpse dressed in a security guard uniform holding an unused signal flare in one hand, the helipad itself was clear of any walking dead or B.O.W.

"Clear," Chris said.

"Clear," Jill seconded.

"No Brad," Rebecca muttered. "So now what do we do?"

"Wait a second," Chris said as he ran back over to the headless corpse. He retrieved the signal flare and rushed over to the center of the pad. Seconds later, the flare was sailing into the air, a trail of smoke the only proof left that it was there.

Seconds passed. Chris looked at his watch. Less than six minutes before the mansion and lab would be reduced to a smoking crater.

The spinning blades of a helicopter were soon heard overhead as the olive green Huey soon appeared. Brad had seen the flare. The helicopter circled around and prepared to land and pick up the remaining S.T.A.R.S. members before the place blew.

THUMP.

The floor vibrated from the impact. "What the hell?" Jill said.

CRASH!

At the far end of the heliport, near a pair of doors that were welded shut, a huge chunk of the floor gave way, falling into the building below. An inhuman roar erupted from the hole, which heralded the arrival of the Tyrant, which had leapt onto the heliport, the body of a Chimera impaled on its claw.

The Tyrant threw the body of the freakish B.O.W. to the ground as it looked over its next victims.

A hail of gunfire - shotgun buckshot, nine-millimeter parabellum rounds, high-caliber magnum rounds and burst rounds greeted the massive bioweapon as it stalked towards the impromptu firing squad while Brad hovered helplessly in his chopper, watching the firefight below.

"Everyone scatter!" Chris shouted. "Give him multiple targets! Scatter!"

The others did as Chris had ordered, while he drew the Tyrant's attention, backing away as he continued to unload shell after shell after shell into the advancing Tyrant.

"That's right, you big bastard!" Chris taunted as he continued to fire. "Come to Daddy!"

That's when the Tyrant broke into a run, closing the distance between them within five seconds.

"SHIT!" Chris cursed as he dived out the way, just as the Tyrant's massive claw missed him by scant inches as it performed an underhand swipe, pulling up chunks of concrete from the ground. Chris rolled along the ground and got to his feet. He spun around, shotgun raised and pulled the trigger.

CLICK.

As the Tyrant spun around, ignoring the bullets and grenade rounds fired by Jill and the others, Chris dug into his pockets, only to find that he was out of shells.

"Oh, give me a break," he muttered as he tossed the shotgun to the side.

But before he could pull out his Beretta, the Tyrant was upon him. One massive hand, the size of a human head, grabbed Chris's vest and lifted him clean in the air.

"CHRIS!" Jill screamed as she saw the Tyrant grab her lover. "Barry, do something!"

"I can't!" Barry replied. "I don't got a clear shot! I might hit Chris!"

Meanwhile, the Tyrant looked at its hostage as it tried to get itself free, but to no avail. The bioweapon looked at the human as if he was a cockroach to be stepped on. Then it cocked its arm back, the claw ready to skewer its next victim.

But dying was not on the agenda of Chris Redfield. He had retrieved his Beretta and fired point blank into the Tyrant's eye.

The monster roared in pain as its right eye was blown out. It tossed Chris to the far wall, near where the hole was. The vest absorbed most of the impact as Chris bounced off the wall and onto the ground. He had lost his grip on his Samurai Edge and it fell into the hole.

"Damn that hurt," Chris muttered as he managed to get to a vertical base, despite the fact that his insides felt like they were scrambled from the impact. Thankfully, nothing wasn't broken or ruptured, since Chris was already tough enough from his days in the military.

By this time, the Tyrant had spotted Chris with its one good eye.

The Tyrant charged. Chris waited at the last moment, his back pressed up against the wall before rolling out of the way, just as the Tyrant's massive claw struck the place where his chest was at moments earlier, getting its claw stuck in the concrete wall.

THUNK.

“Chris!” Brad's voice screamed from the chopper. “Use it! Kill the damn thing!”

Chris saw what Brad had dropped onto the pad.

A M66 Rocket Launcher, complete with four shots.

Not wasting any time, Chris made a beeline towards the massive weapon, while Barry, Jill and Rebecca covered him. “Chris, hurry!” Jill shouted. “I'm almost out of ammo!”

By this time, the Tyrant had gotten its claw freed and saw the man in the green vest scrambling away from him. In its primitive mind, he would be the first to die. The others can wait. The monster charged...

...just as Chris reached the launcher. As the Tyrant's distance closed on Chris, he had the weapon on one shoulder, aimed at the eight-foot bioweapon.

“Game over, motherfucker,” Chris snarled as he pulled the trigger.

WHOOSH!

A single, silver anti-tank rocket sailed out of the launcher. Chris's aim was true, as the deadly weapon found its mark. With a near-deafening BOOM, the Tyrant was reduced to bloody, smoking pieces.

Jill looked at her watch. Only one minute left before the place blew. Chris dropped the launcher as Brad brought the Huey down for a landing. Rebecca hopped in, followed by Barry. Jill was next, followed by Chris.

“Go, Brad!” Chris ordered. “Get us the hell out of here!”

“Got it!” the pilot said as he took off.

Chris sat down by Jill and looked at his watch. Forty-five seconds remained. As the bird took to the skies...

KA-BOOM!

...the chopper shook with the force of the massive explosion that leveled the mansion and the laboratory.

[End Flashback]

The chopper landed back on the R.P.D. helipad. Out of two teams - well, two teams and Wesker - only myself, Jill, Barry, Brad and Rebecca are alive. We went our separate ways afterward, to rest and recuperate. I knew that this was just the beginning.

I filed the reports, not leaving anything out. The following day, we were summoned to Irons' office. He himself had read the report as to what had happened that night. As expected, he did not believe a word. Not even the documents we had taken from the mansion and laboratory swayed him. And the footage of Kenneth being slaughtered by the zombie had all but vanished.

He accused us of gross negligence and were it up to him, charge us for the deaths of Enrico and the others. Instead, he decided to sic Internal Affairs on us, while at the same time ordering that all of us were to be removed from S.T.A.R.S., the unit itself dissolved, and have all of us work as beat cops.

The cops that are on the take give us evil looks, as if waiting for the call from Umbrella to take us down. Thank God that some of the cops are the honest ones; Ryman, Rita and Branagh, just to name a few. At least Jill and I are still partners. Barry had taken a leave of absence and has decided to get his family out of harms' way. He just left for his in-laws' place in Toronto. Rebecca's also left the city. She's decided to head down to Stone Ville until the heat dies down. I told her to relay a message from me to Claire, telling her that things were a bit hot in Raccoon, and that she should wait until things cooled down.

That left Brad, Jill, and myself. Jill has a new apartment, but decided to stay with me for the time being.

I look at Jill. She's still sleeping The physical wounds have healed, but the mental ones are still there. I'm no different. But what still has me reeling was the fact that Jill was in fact Birkin and Wesker's unexpected 'Patient Zero' for Project V. I've done some digging around in Wesker's desk and I found that what he had said was indeed true. Jill did suffer from a rare case of immunodeficiency that was fatal in most cases, and that adminstering P20 into her system had indeed strengthened her immune system greatly, but also made her faster and stronger.

I can't bear to think what could have happened if Jill had accepted Wesker's offer...

But Wesker was right about one thing. Jill is indeed the original super-soldier. But I seriously think that Jill does not want to be prodded and used for Umbrella's twisted research. No, I will keep her secret, and continue to train her. I think Jill is more shocked than anything. But I managed to talk to her, and tell her that her skills were earned, not from some bit of science. Technically, Umbrella did save her life, but as she said to Wesker, she owed them nothing.

But it does answers some questions about Jill. Never thought my girlfriend would have that personal of a link to Umbrella.

Snafu's Notes: As you can see, I followed the Gamecube remake of Resident Evil (as witnessed by Forest's appearance as the One Dangerous Zombie), as well as throwing in a Hard Target reference. Also, I modeled Chris' S.T.A.R.S. uniform from RE5, complete with his knife over the shoulder.

About P20: P20 (Progenitor Ancillary Twenty) In the official storyline, Wesker used P30 to give Jill superhuman attributes, while keeping her under his control. So I took that and revamped it. In this story, P20 is the predecessor to P30, which was used to save Jill's life, hence Wesker and Birkin's interest in her.

Next Chapter: The Investigation into Umbrella begins. Chris and Jill have a narrow brush with death, and take the next step in their relationship.

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