Chapter 52: Foundations for Insanity
“Alyssa, you’ve come to save me from all your dolls and their glares?” Daniel asks hopefully as he reclines on his pillows, his arms crossed over his chest. His handsome face is exhausted and he doesn’t seem himself.
“Are you sure you’re not sick, Daniel?” I speak quietly so I don’t awaken the kids who are now sleeping, “You don’t seem yourself.”
“I just want to sleep, soon, honestly... without having three women stare at me like they’re about to slit my throat the moment I shut my eyes,” Daniel is also still grumpy, clearly.
“Is there something you want to tell me?” I ask him, while my eyes narrow at his glazed over gaze.
“Nope,” he looks into the distance and doesn’t bother continuing the conversation.
“Did you have any encounters with any lurking figures upstairs? A giant man? Black leather suit? Long steel coloured hair?” I wait for Daniel to have a single moment of recollection, but his eyes barely dart or react to my words.
“Nope,” he answers shortly again, “Talk about random. Can I go to sleep now, Alyssa? Tomorrow is going to be a big day.”
“Sure, get some rest... Inertia,” even as I test using his favoured super name, Daniel still doesn’t react.
“Fine, get some sleep. Also, girls, follow me,” I look to Strawberry, Blue and Raven, “Let’s head up to the garage.”
“We’re going for a drive? Woohoo!” Blue whispers excitedly and skips ahead while Raven rubs her palms together.
“I’ve been waiting for you to say that,” Raven nods to me while following Blue. Strawberry is left twirling her long blonde hair around a finger as she gazes at me with a worried expression.
“What?” I ask, confused by her worry.
“We’re not leaving again, are we?” she asks, “I think this place feels like home now.”
“We’re not running away again, but we’ll be leaving temporarily. And we’re not telling STRIKE - so let’s go quickly before they stop us,” I walk with a reluctant Strawberry to reach the lift with Blue and Raven.
We all hop in together and when I see their miss matched outfits, I decide we have to make a quick pit stop with the costumes up in the Black Lair Clubhouse.
“We’re going shopping first, dolls,” I speak this, uncertain of how they’ll react. Their reaction is delayed but when they do react, it’s the complete opposite of what you’d expect. Raven and Strawberry shrug while Blue just looks completely indifferent, “Follow me, try to smile. I think you’ll enjoy this.”
Blue decides to wear black short-shorts and a white tank top and I tie up her blue hair for her in a high pony. In the mean time, Raven and Strawberry are choosing their outfits.
“We’re done,” Raven eventually calls to me and I turn to see her wearing a black suit with black sunglasses.
“Are you trying to look like Jose?” I ask, raising a brow. She in turn grabs her glasses and lifts them up to glare at me under them.
“No?” she snaps.
“Do you approve, boss?” Strawberry steps out wearing a leather white tube top and a white skirt... with thigh high black boots.
“Nice, do you approve of Raven’s outfit, Strawberry?” I ask.
“She looks cute,” Strawberry pats Raven’s hair and kisses her on the cheek. Blue rolls her eyes and steps around me to gaze over both their outfits.
“Raven is copying Jose - because she secretly looks up to him like a big brother. And Strawberry, you’re just wearing an updated version of our old outfits back in the lab. White -” Strawberry cuts Blue off before she can continue.
“The thigh high boots are black, so shut your mouth, Blue!” Strawberry crosses her arms over her chest and glares at Blue, “Why have you been so mean today?”
“Because I’ve been trying to become an independent mammal and you and Raven don’t make your own choices. You need to try and be an independent mammal like me,” Blue points to her chest, “Right, Alyssa?”
“Ah - r-right, but -” I can’t finish.
“I want a gun, Alyssa,” Strawberry looks at me, “I want two guns. No, I want three guns. Make that four guns.”
“Finally, you make a unique decision,” Blue taunts her further while Raven slowly raises her hands.
“Woah, woah, woah,” Raven takes off her glasses dramatically in a large swipe and then she steps back to glare at both Blue and Strawberry, “Calm down, girls. Since when do we argue?”
“Since Blue became... a... a bitch,” as Strawberry finds the right word, Blue jumps right in.
“Whore!” Blue growls back and I put up my hands.
“Enough! Don’t take points on how to communicate from the animals that run the bunker. We’re classy women, okay?” I point to the door, “Let’s go and discuss our options. I don’t want to get you guns yet, Strawberry. They aren’t necessary for the mission I have planned for us.”
“What’s ‘classy’ mean exactly?” Raven asks.
“Elegant... refined. No swearing. No degrading. No insulting those who we love,” I say this slowly, even though I’m a hypocrite because I swear a little too much, but I glare down both Strawberry and Blue, who can’t meet each other in the eye.
“Relax, girls, we’ll all cuddle afterwards and then we’ll feel better,” Raven tries to awkwardly make things okay as we all head into the second lift that will take us to the garage.
As we descend two levels and the doors open, I’m holding the keys to PRINCE33 in my palm.
We silently walk out into the garage to find the pink Lamborghini exactly where I parked it last.
“Hey, boss,” Strawberry asks for my swift attention as we walk to our vehicle and I spin to see her reading a text on a phone I gave her, “Short leash?”
“Hmm? Give me that,” I rudely snatch the phone out of her hand to see the text from Dale to Strawberry, “Asshole,” I text the reply, ending it with - A, and then I press send.
“Shouldn’t we, uh, decipher the message?” Strawberry whispers to me.
“I deciphered it. We leave - I’m in trouble. But right now, I don’t care. Let’s go, babe, don’t worry about them, they’re stupider because their... brains... live down here,” I point to my groin, “Literally inside my vagina. That’s all they care about. It’s all they think about. Now let’s go.”
“Okay, aww, poo, it’s raining,” Strawberry hears it as we all do, the start of lovely acid rain.
“Luckily we have a car, now let’s go. Our desired location is secret so I can’t disclose that information or any other information for that matter, not yet. Just have some faith in me and let’s head out. We’re not travelling far anyway,” I direct everyone to the Lamborghini and we all squish in.
As soon as I turn on the engine, I look to my right to the wreckage of STRIKE - which is somewhat repaired.
Repaired enough for the reverse lights to show.
I slam my foot down and take off, while I swear under my breath. Of course the drunken beasts had been hiding in the car - waiting for me to leave - testing if I would even dare.
“We’re being followed!” Blue calls out next to me while sitting on the middle console.
“I know, I know,” I snap, exiting onto the street and heading into the city.
“Where do you want to go? Tell me!” Blue says, “I’ll take us there right now.”
“Fifth street?” I ask, giving up my secret details.
“Done -” even as she speaks, the whole world blinks out with a electricity shortage.
And then the car is spiralling through time and space, transporting us to the exact location I need to be.
As we hit the road, I slam on the breaks and then slowly pull into a parking spot while feeling disoriented.
“Thanks, Blue,” I smile and nod at her as she grins back, “You all stay here, I’ll be back in thirty minutes. If I’m not back - call STRIKE. I can’t tell you where I’ll be, just trust me to stay safe. And don’t argue... please.”
“Okay, boss,” Strawberry and Raven nod at me while Blue smiles. I leave the car and leave them the keys. I walk to a large abandoned building, one of the tallest in Frankincense City. It was a regular topic of conversation in high school. Kids liked to explore here. It was relatively safe, just creepy as heaps of windows were boarded up and the place had no electricity whatsoever.
I head through the front smashed door and find the stairs, running up the many steps to the roof top. It takes me a few minutes to wind up the practically pitch black stair case, and my legs are sore by the time I reach the very top.
I swing open the door and I look around to see a flat rooftop - graffitied all over. The paint runs in swirls with the acid rain, while i just ignore the slight sting of the acid to my skin. I run to the edge of the rooftop and then grab one of the slippery poles that someone had thoughtfully cemented into the roof. I think it used to be a flag pole - now it was just a trick.
A common dare.
In high school everyone talked about the Swing of Death. If you wanted to be cool - you’d attempt to hang off it while screaming out ′I smell death!’. You’d get your few seconds of fame as everyone in the centre of the city would see you hanging by your fingers over the roads, the pole your only saviour. Except now I didn’t want to be famous - I just wanted Hacksaw’s attention.
I had a feeling he’d find me quickly.
I grab the pole and look over the roof top, seeing the pink Lamborghini and just a few blocks down, STRIKE roars past, the wrong way, while searching streets for my escaped Brownie Squad.
I grab the pole and without a hint of fear, I hang off the edge, my feet still firmly on the roof top as I yell out the teenage dare.
“Hey, FC! I smell death!” I scream out as loud as I can as the wind below me chills my ankles and the acid rain slowly stops. I swing to the safety of the edge and swing around again, a couple of times, “I! Smell! Death!” I call out again and then I hang off the edge for a minute or so, waiting for some sort of answer.
When I get none, I swing back to the roof top and look around for a figure.
I see none.
I had thought my plan might work in grabbing Hacksaw’s attention.
I thought he would have come running as quickly as possible.
So far, there are no shadows on the streets or anything to give me an indication that he heard or saw me.
Before I give up too quickly, I wait a bit longer while biting my lip.
“I’m waiting,” I say loudly, wondering if he is here and just watching me from a shadow, “...Louis?” I call out again.
A few more minutes pass.
Then I get my answer.
“I knew it,” he speaks and I nearly jump a mile as I hear his deep tone. I spin to see him right next to me.
His invisible cloak flashes off and then I turn to face a grinning ghost.
Hacksaw had come and he looked completely filled with joy. Like Christmas had come early.
“You knew I’d seek you out, did you?” I ask, taking a few steps back to turn to him, “I was actually hoping we could talk... about whatever you want to talk about.”
Hacksaw’s eyes glitter with emotion. Relief, satisfaction - delight.
He was... smitten. And he couldn’t keep his eyes off me.
“I have loved you for a hundred years,” he starts, in a drawl, “I knew you’d remember me... Sammy... you’ll never lose me... never... never again,,” Hacksaw purses his lips, “I’ve waited too long,” and then he can’t contain himself. He reaches out and grabs my elbows, forcefully and with passion. He jerks me forward, he aims to kiss me... but I’ve already raised my hand and slapped him as hard as I can.
"What the hell was that?” I scream at him and stumble backwards away from him, “My name isn’t Sammy - why did you try and kiss me?”
“Sa... - Alyssa, please,” Hacksaw looks momentarily offended as he turns from me, blinking rapidly while looking over the smokey and gas filled horizon.
“I’m totally confused. First you say I’m your daughter in a letter, you admit later that that’s not quite the truth... now, my name has changed and you try and kiss me. Are you insane?” I try to keep my anger out of my tone, but Hacksaw seems calm enough.
But he can’t look at me as he thinks.
“Of course, I should have realised you’d be different,” Hacksaw turns to me after a considerable amount of time thinking to himself, “It’s okay, Alyssa, you’ve made the right decision coming to me. And I called you my daughter in the letter to give you a reason to trust me. That’s all that was.”
“Why do you think I’m someone called Sammy?” I ask, “Don’t get too far ahead of yourself, buddy, I’m here to talk.”
“I’ve spent decades hoping for this moment that we reunite,” Hacksaw explains, “I’ve been waiting for you this whole time.”
“Great, so I look like someone you once loved. Newsflash, I’ve never, ever met you. I have no idea who you are. Except you threw my friend V off a roof top and that you’re a legendary killer ghost of the city. So, why don’t you try to make me understand what the heck is going on, Louis?” I wait for him to realise I hardly understand what he’s referring to.
He stands tall while gazing at me, his legendary hair a hundred years long and wisping in the wind. He considers his words carefully before he starts to talk, “My lover was kidnapped, her name was Sammy. This happened many, many years ago. It’s because her genes were pure like mine. They recreated her in you,” Louis explains, “We’re the only two beings on this Earth who had the purest of mutations. We are Ultimate. We are the best. It’s why hanging around STRIKE is completely unnecessary. They’re made to be monsters. I’m the original, best prototype that nature created. They’re science lab rats, pulled apart and put back together. They’re a false representation of power. I am the true power... you are my true half... even if you do not see it now I will protect you and you will naturally... fall in love with me, in fact you naturally found me extremely attractive. I bet you do now. Just admit it - perhaps you’ll even start to remember me over time... maybe even already you feel our connection?” Louis takes a few steps back and leans on the pole, crossing his arms over his chest, his eyes roam over me, “I’ve cared for nothing in the world... I’ve cared for nothing at all... but you. And certainly not that disloyal little bitch, Viola... not the people who call themselves Mayor of this city nor Government officials nor New World representatives. I only ever cared for you... Sammy... you’ll get used to the name change. My god... I can’t believe I’ve finally had the chance to speak with you one on one... and that you sought me out willingly... it’s a sign,” Louis is still joyful, even as I scowl.
“Dude. I think you’re missing a few nuts and bolts in your head. Yes, you’re generally attractive but I don’t find you that attractive. I actually, believe it or not, fell in love with STRIKE. They’re actually pretty nice guys. You should all talk and be allies or something. But apparently you don’t care about anyone but me?” I shake my head in confusion while Hacksaw’s expression changes abruptly, ”What?” I ask, impatient.
“The rare few who have come to know me called me insane over time, but before they did they had the same look you have in your eyes. Disgust. Distrust. Uneasiness. You think I’m nuts,” Hacksaw speaks quietly while I shake my head again.
“Not... really? - well - um... I just think you’re... confusing... um...” I try to find the right words, “I don’t understand what you want. More like - you don’t seem to realise Sammy is dead, I’m sorry but -”
“You’re not dead,” Hacksaw cuts in quietly, “You’re just... an empty shell of who my former lover used to be. Which means... I spent decades waiting for nothing. You were the only thing... Sammy was the only thing... that kept me in this place. Sammy kept me sane. Sammy kept me alive. Sammy was my life,” Hacksaw bites his bottom lip as he pulls out his phone and starts texting, “G. O. Go. Sent,” Hacksaw slowly smiles, before laughing with tears in his eyes, “And now the second Dooms Day... begins.”
“What are you talking about?” I ask, not believing him because he honestly did sound insane. I just didn’t want to tell him that incase he decided to throw me off the roof like a lunatic - which I know believed he was.
“I have connections to anyone and everyone important - it was for the purpose of finding you. Keeping you safe. Now - now... there is no purpose anymore. If love is my insanity than so be it. But for some reason, even in the face of your denials, everything seems clear now. You can’t see me the way you should. The way that is right. The way that was meant to be. So I will have to change the world. To make that happen,” Louis pockets his phone after his great speech.
“What did you do?” I ask, quietly... especially when I see lights in the distance, and the sound of a helicopter.
What the fuck?
My eyes scan the horizon and I see the multiple large aircraft, in the distance, now approaching rapidly - like a swat team.
“I gave the Government the golden egg,” Hacksaw continues, “I gave them the exact co-ordinates to the nuclear bombs in FC... to the bunker... hell, I even gave them direct co-ordinates to Casey, oh, including your pet whores and your pet beasts. There’s a tracker on their car - there’s a tracker on your pink lambogrhini... but don’t worry - I made sure you will be safe in the extraction of the weapons and the takeover of FC.”
“I’m still confused,” I lie, but really I’m just panicking as the helicopters get closer.
I hear the roar of STRIKE’s engine go down another street.
I see the light in Hacksaw’s devilish eyes.
“Of course you understand, Alyssa... you’re an Ultimate. You know exactly what I’ve done,” Louis sighs, content, “I’ve destroyed the city.”
“You’re going to get everyone killed. One million residents - Hacksaw - one million souls will be razed to the ground along with you and everyone else in this city,” I snarl this, “If they take those weapons, we’re all dead. It’s our only protection.”
“Yes, it was a plan long ago highly desired by Avalon and Atlantis... but times do change, Alyssa... times do change. They know the mutations are not contagious. They know the creatures here are good labour... they’re good business. And you - you’re blind. So I will be transferring you to Reuben - the bastard prince who bought you. When you come to your sense, find me... we can start fresh,” Hacksaw smiles again, “If there’s anything I’ve learnt. It’s that the only way to get what you want - is to take matters into your own hands. If you won’t love me in this world, Alyssa. You’ll love me in the new world I create. I will find a way to make you see. I will change the world a thousand times over until you see.”
Hacksaw’s voice drowns out with the sound of more helicopters... and then planes also thunder in from the distance. Included in the noise of flying aircrafts, residents of FC start screaming and waking from their beds in terror.
As my body freezes and my eyes take in the gassy smokey horizon, green, orange and grey, slowly being discoloured by the swamp of helicopters, planes and other flying air craft... multiplying by the very second, Hacksaw disappears into the thick air and my heart is completely consumed with terror.
Everything was about to change.
Hacksaw had said it himself.
The second Dooms Day had arrived.
And it was all my fault.
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Series Reading Order:
1. The Diamond Spy [free on Wattpad/Inkitt/RadishFiction]
2. Princess of the Shadows [free on Wattpad/Inkitt/RadishFiction]
3. Ultimate Underworld [free on Wattpad/Inkitt/RadishFiction]
4. Reigning Shadows [soon to be started on Radish Fiction as premium]
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So, what to read next?
Book2: Princess of the Shadows! which is now free on Wattpad/Inkitt and Radish Fiction!
Also, there is a bonus chapter for The Diamond Spy on Radish Fiction, available to read for free, it’s called 53. BONUS CONTENT: Casey’s Reformation, it’s in Casey’s POV.