Pairings: PP!Gerard/FG!Frank, PP!Gerard/Korse non con.
Summary: The Killjoys are in trouble. Korse has caught up with them, and there is no where left to run.
Warnings: Dark fic, Rape, Angst, HurtComfort, Adult themes, Torture, Violence, Swearing.
Disclaimer: Not mine. Please don't sue me! This is just for pleasure!
Authors Note: Hi all! Thanks for being patient. Im feeling better now, though still in some pain and still seeing my doctor (and not of the Time Lord variety sadly) but anyway... I'm still trying to keep up with my updates so apologies again for my lateness! There's a bit of a twist in this one and I should also mention here - I have nothing against the MCR wives!!! ;) Hope you enjoy this!! Oh and I'm going to see MCR at Reading in 4 days!!!! OMG!!!!!!
NB - Now beta-ed (and improved) by the fantastic ink_demon Thanks hun!
Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, Part Seven , Part Eight, Part Nine, Part Ten
Ray was running deeper into the desert, his breathing becoming more laboured, unable to see his hand held up before his eyes. He was tiring, and had had to rest twice already. It was so uncomfortable, the heat was searing and the air was dusty and hostile. He stumbled, and fell to the ground, burning himself on the hot, unforgiving sand. He cursed loudly, and brushed himself down, ignoring the pain. He knew he had been searching for some time; an hour had probably passed, maybe even longer. He knew Gerard would be stressing back at the camp, Frank too, but Ray was not about to give up and go back, leaving his young friend out in the desert all night.
He paused, staring into the pitch-black night helplessly.
“Come on, Mikes.” Ray called. “Where are you?”
He stopped, looking left and right into the darkness and finding no sign of the youngest Killjoy. Ray swore again under his breath, panic now setting in fully. He knew he shouldn't stay out there much longer, as it was no safer for him than it was for Mikey. But how was he supposed to go back and tell the others that he'd lost Mikey? How was he going to face Gerard and explain to him that he had given up, and left his little brother alone in the desert all night?
“Mikey,” he called out, beyond caring who else might be out there prowling the desert, Draculoids included.
“You better not be watching me right now, sulking! If you are, I'm gonna give you such an ass-kicking...”
Ray heard a noise and he turned quickly, looking into the blackness expectantly. There was nothing. Ray moved forward, always aware that he could be blundering into danger of his own but he no longer cared; finding Mikey was all that mattered.
There was no other option. Ray wasn't going to give up. Even if it took Ray all night, he would find his friend.
“Mikey!” He shouted into the quiet night. “Where the hell are you?”
The soft voice came from the darkness, catching him unawares.
Ray whirled around, his breathing quickened in his panic. Mikey stood behind him, keeping to the shadows but Ray couldn't mistake his outline. He rushed forward, as relief washed over him.
“Jesus Mikey,” he exclaimed. “I was worried sick. What the hell were you doing?”
“Were you worried, Ray?” Mikey's tone was cold, weary. “Anybody else?”
Ray gave him a disapproving look. “You know Gerard loves you, Mikey. Of course he was scared when you ran off into the night like that on your own. You know how dangerous it is.”
Mikey turned away. “So what? Gerard didn't act that concerned. He seemed far more bothered about his new best friend, from where I was standing.”
Ray let out a low sigh, his hands deep in his pockets. “I think Gerard wants to believe that Bert has changed. Or, at least, he needs to.”
Mikey shook his head. “I'll never trust him. Know what I think? What Gerard went though in that town has obviously affected his judgement.”
Ray glowered. “Mikey, that's not fair.”
The younger Way crossed his arms across his chest, his own words causing him pain inwardly. He didn't want to feel that way; he didn't want to lose faith in his brother. But he couldn't help it. He couldn't shake off the memory of bursting into the tour bus that day and finding Bert pinning Gerard down, and battering him mercilessly. Mikey had no doubts that he would have lost his brother that day if he and Jeph hadn't interfered.
How was Mikey supposed to forgive that?
“You didn't see what the bastard did to him that night,” he told Ray, his voice strained. “The state he was in, he was almost unrecognisable.” He closed his eyes, the full force of the horrific memories returning to haunt him once again. “His face was black and blue, and he'd forced him to get drunk, although he knew what the drink was doing to Gerard. He just didn't give a shit.”
“Bert was fucked out of his head all the time himself back then, Mikey.” Ray offered. “I’m not making excuses, but maybe he didn't know what he was doing either? Maybe he does regret what happened?”
There was no response.
“How much of this has to do with Bert, Mikey?” He asked the younger man, softly.
Mikey blinked. “What's that supposed to mean? I've told you why I hate the bastard and don't want him anywhere near my brother...”
“I know,” Ray interjected. “But this is about more than just Bert, isn't it?”
Mikey paused, finally realising what Ray was getting at. He glared for a moment, before averting his gaze. “I left him there, Ray.”
“What Korse did to Gee was NOT your fault, Mikey.” Ray told him firmly.
“Why don't you say it, Ray?” Mikey snapped in response. “He raped him.” His voice broke as he continued; “He tortured him, and then he raped him. And it's because of me. Because I left him there.”
“He told you to go.”
“So fucking what?” Mikey shouted.
Ray reacted furiously. “Mikey, shut up!”
Mikey was no longer thinking rationally. All of his guilt, rage and grief for what happened to his brother was erupting out of him. The fact that he could be putting himself and Ray in yet more danger did not, could not, cross his mind.
“Don't tell me to shut up, Ray! You weren’t there. It wasn't a decision that you or Frank had to make, was it? It was all me and only me. I left him there. I turned and ran. You guys didn’t run away like a coward, leaving him to go through that alone did you? You didn't let him down.”
“Nor did you. You saved Grace-”
“I should have stayed.”
And at that, Mikey broke down. He fell slowly to his knees, his hands covering his face, his whole body trembling. Ray reached out for Mikey then, and although the younger man resisted and pushed him away, he was relentless. He clung onto his friend, letting him sob in his arms, getting out all of the pain that he had been forced to keep inside since the moment he'd ran from that store.
Finally, after a few moments, Ray released his friend but Mikey didn't move away. He stayed, his head resting against Ray's arm.
“We have to get back, Mikes;” Ray whispered. “It's not safe out here just the two of us. And you left without your gun.”
Mikey frowned as he pulled back from Ray, wiping his eyes.
“Gerard is going to kill me.”
Ray smiled. “Maybe, but I reckon he's just gonna be more happy to see you.” He held out his hand. “Come on, Kid. Lets get going. I thought I heard something out here earlier and I'm not sure if-”
Mikey cut across him. “And what about Bert?” He got to his feet slowly. “I can't forgive him.”
Ray sighed. “That's something you gotta work out, Mikey.”
Mikey took a deep breath. He knew Ray was right. He knew he had to return to the camp, and Gerard, and face the music.
Whatever it took, he would make things right with Gerard.
He was lucky to still have him in his life at all.
Gerard hadn't slept a wink in the two hours that had passed since Mikey and Ray had disappeared. The Killjoy could not contain his fears and no amount of reassurance from Frank had helped to comfort him. He blamed himself for upsetting Mikey. He knew he was the reason Mikey had sprinted off and he should have gone after his brother, not Ray.
Gerard got up, pulling his mask on to protect himself from the harmful glare of the sun. Frank walked up to stand beside him, and took his hand.
“I thought it was best to let you rest,” Frank said quietly. “Bert and I sorted out the camp. As soon as the others get back, we're good to go.”
Gerard looked down. “If they come back,” he muttered. “They've been gone all night, haven't they?”
Frank gave him a reassuring smile. “They'll be fine. Ray will have found Mikey, don't worry about that.”
“He shouldn't have been the one going after him,” Gerard snapped. “It should have been me. He's my brother.”
Suddenly, Bert's voice announced; “Hey, guys! They're coming!”
Both Gerard and Frank spun around to find the very welcoming sight of Ray and Mikey walking towards them. Ray was smiling; Mikey was looking anywhere but at Gerard.
The red haired Killjoy moved as quickly as he could. Grimacing in pain, he hurried toward Mikey, pulling his younger brother's ray gun out of his pocket. By the time he reached him, he was glaring daggers.
“Just what the hell did you think you were doing?” Gerard yelled, his anger evident. “You do not go running off into the desert on your own, especially at night!”
“I'm sorry, Gerard.” Mikey whispered, his gaze still locked on the ground.
Gerard wasn't finished yet. “And, what’s more,” he continued sternly, holding out Mikey's gun for him to take. “You never go anywhere without your gun. You fucking know that!”
Mikey took the gun and then stood there, hands behind his back, still unable to look at his brother.
“What I said about what happened, about Korse;” Mikey said, so quietly Gerard had to lean in to hear him, “I had no right. I'm sorry.”
Gerard continued to glare at him for a moment longer, but then he threw himself at his brother, giving him a massive bear hug.
“Don't you ever do anything like that again, Mikey Way.” Gerard told him, fighting back the tears. “You got it?”
Bert walked up beside Gerard, placing a hand on his back. Frank eyed Bert with dislike.
Give the brothers a moment, can't you?
Mikey saw Bert and released his brother, turning to the other man instead. “I still don't like you, Bert.” Mikey informed him. “I don't trust you and I probably never will after what you did to my brother that night. But you seem to mean a lot to Gee so, for him, I'll give you a chance.”
Bert nodded. “Sounds fair.” He extended his hand out for Mikey to shake.
Mikey threw him a withering look.
“Don't push it,” he snapped, and then turned and walked away, to pack up the rest of his belongings for the journey.
Gerard glanced at Frank, who stood some way away, wanting to give the brothers some space. He gave him a small smile. Frank knew how relieved Gerard was, and was just so glad that they were all back together. That feeling of gladness didn't last long though, and was replaced by dread as Frank watched Bert take hold of Gerard's wrist and gestured for him to roll up his sleeve. Gerard frowned but then gave his old friend a grateful smile, and then nodded his understanding. He did as he was told, fumbling with his sleeve as he pulled it up to reveal his bare arm and then waited. Bert took hold of it and then withdrew a needle and held it against Gerard's skin. He watched, somewhat intrigued, as Gerard tensed up.
“That fear of needles is getting worse, isn’t it Gee?” Bert whispered.
Gerard opened one eye. “Get on with it.” He muttered, and then gasped and cringed as Bert plunged the needle into his arm and injected him with his daily medicine.
Frank watched this closely; the feeling of unease from last night hadn't faded at all. It was all just too perfect, Bert turning up, giving Gerard the life saving drugs he needed to counteract whatever it was that Korse had injected into him. Frank did not believe in coincidences or fate. And he certainly didn't like the way Gerard was looking at Bert now, as if he depended on him once more. Frank knew why. Gerard needed those drugs, the drugs that took away the pain, and Bert was the man giving him that respite. Of course Gerard wanted Bert near him, and he would trust the man too as long as the drugs lasted. No matter how Bert behaved.
Frank grimaced. Just what was he supposed to do?
Suddenly, there was a warning shout from Ray, and Frank whirled round to see his friend running towards them, gun raised, yelling for all he was worth.
“Dracs coming this way! At least eight of them!”
And then, they were on top of them. All five of the Killjoys rushed forward, guns raised, preparing to fight. Bert took one robot out at once, smirking at it as he did so.
Frank was by Gerard's side at once, keeping an eye on his boyfriend, ready to protect him if need be.
Everything was chaotic as the Killjoys, outnumbered and outgunned, fought long and hard. Their campsite had turned into a battle zone, as Drac after Drac appeared out of nowhere. But the Killjoys knew how to fight, and slowly, but surely, the Dracs numbers began to dwindle.
Ray cried out, and Frank turned to see the other man had a nasty burn on his shoulder, Gerard was fighting hand to hand with a tall Drac who seemed to be putting up quite a battle. Bert had finished off another enemy and Frank himself cut one down with a well-aimed shot.
It was then that they all seemed to realise at once just how much danger Mikey was in.
A Drac had hold of him, and was beating him repeatedly. Mikey was trying to dislodge the Drac, or 'Crow, considering how good a fighter this drone was, but he was at a disadvantage. And he was in big trouble.
The Drac gripped Mikey's gun hand and squeezed until the man cried out in pain and his weapon was forced out of his grip. The Crow then struck the younger Way brother across the face, knocking him to the ground.
Despite his best efforts, Gerard couldn't get to his brother. There were too many Dracs. More and more seemed to be appearing out of nowhere. The fight had turned desperate. He yelled in anguish as he saw his brother being outnumbered and one enemy moved closer, preparing to take him out.
He only had another second to worry about Mikey before he was grabbed from behind and he instantly began to grapple with a man he now knew to be a Scarecrow.
Mikey was backing away, his gun lying uselessly on the ground. The Drac bore down on him, grabbing the younger Killjoys throat and beginning to squeeze. Mikey gasped, and tried to struggle but the Drac only tightened its hold and continued to throttle the life out of its victim.
Just as everything was beginning to get darker, just as Mikey could feel his eyes rolling up inside his head and his thoughts turned to his fellow Killjoys, the Drac was suddenly pulled off him and Mikey could breath again. He heard the ray gun blast, and knew the Drac was dead.
Rubbing his neck, Mikey looked up, ready to thank his saviour.
He stopped dead when he saw Bert standing over him, his gun still smoking from the blast that had killed the Drac that lay at their feet. Mikey could only stare at the other man, his mouth hanging open.
“You okay?” Bert urged, helping Mikey up and patting him on the back.
“Yeah,” Mikey replied, breathlessly. He was very aware of what had just happened. Bert had saved his life.
Frank was firing at the fleeing Dracs, feeling a rush of exhilaration when he brought one down and then smirking as he watched Ray grab it, preparing to finish it off. He then quickly looked for Gerard to check up on his boyfriend's progress. He saw him and smiled knowingly to himself.
Gerard was doing just fine. He had pinned a Scarecrow to the ground, after obviously giving him quite a beating, ignoring the waves of pain washing over him from his many injuries. Injuries he had suffered thanks to the corporation this drone was a part of. He actually smirked at his victim, tightening his hold on his neck.
His revenge starts here.
“I'm gonna enjoy this,” Gerard snarled, his gun ready.
“The Exterminator enjoyed you,” the 'Crow hissed.
The Killjoy froze. He couldn't fire, or move, but he did release his hold on the Drac, his gun almost forgotten, wavering in his trembling grasp.
The 'Crow, trained well in combat by Korse, sensed the Killjoy's fear and nerves immediately, and he responded at once by striking Gerard across the face, knocking him away. He then moving closer to him, backing him against a wall, his gun pointing at his face.
“Kill him, Gee!” Frank yelled. “Shoot him!”
Gerard didn't respond. All he could do was stare.
Frank didn't hesitate. He barged Gerard out of harm’s way, and then dived in front of him, so Gerard was shielded from the Drac. The droid moved to aim his gun at Frank and his finger carefully covered the trigger. However, the Drac wasn't fast enough - Frank was quicker. He raised his own blaster and fired, hitting the Drac square in the chest.
The last Drac gave a gasp of pain and then fell to the ground beside Frank. It lay there, unmoving. Frank reached forward and ripped off its mask, just to be sure. When he was sure it was done for, he let out a sigh of relief he didn't even know he was holding.
After a seconds pause, Frank was up on his feet, helping Ray to stand also. He looked around quickly, scanning the many Dracs that now lay dead on the sand. He then turned his attention to where Gerard had fallen and he was relieved to see that his boyfriend was fine and up on his feet, although apparently moving away from the fight scene as quickly as his broken ankle would allow him.
Frank set off after him, not even noticing as he dropped his ray gun to the sand. Ray, Mikey and Bert followed right behind.
At that, Gerard did pause, and he turned and regarded Frank with what could only be described as pure dislike.
“Leave me alone, Frank.”
Frank was not taking the hint. “What's wrong?” he enquired, and clasped his boyfriend’s shoulder, but he stepped back in surprise when Gerard shoved out and pushed him away, stumbling from the effort.
“‘What's wrong’?” Gerard repeated, his eyes narrowing. “What do you think is wrong, Frank? You just made me look pathetic out there! Knocking me to one side because you didn't think I could finish off one lowly Drac? What do you take me for?”
Frank was taken aback. He hesitated. “I just wanted-”
“You just wanted to prove you were a better man than me. Is that it?”
Frank stared at him incredulously.
“Gee,” he replied, his expression disbelieving. He knew that Gerard was upset, not to mention scared and was striking out at the closest person, but he was still thrown by the venom in the red head's voice. “Don't be stupid! I didn't mean-”
Gerard rounded on him once more at that. “Oh, perfect. So now I'm stupid as well as helpless, is that what you’re saying?” He jabbed at Frank with his finger, his rage boiling over. “No wonder I let him fuck me. Right, Frankie?”
Frank was struck dumb. Mikey and Ray were gaping at the two of them now, not knowing how best to respond. Neither wanted to get involved, that was clear. Bert was still there, keeping back, no wonder enjoying the show. Frank stared down at the ground, and then shook his head, trying to make sense of his boyfriend's rage before he once more raised his head to meet Gerard's furious gaze.
“Don't talk like that, Gerard,” Frank said quietly. “I know this still hurts. Too much. I didn't mean to make you feel helpless, or broken.” His voice wavered as he tried to get his point across. “You're my boyfriend, I just wanted to pro-”
“Tell you want, Frank.” Gerard hissed, interrupting him, clearly not wanting to hear another word. “If I'm so useless, why don't I get the hell away from you all? I'm clearly a liability.” He was red in the face now, his hands balled into fists at his sides. Frank could tell that all his boyfriend wanted to do was to take a swing for him. “Or, better still,” Gerard continued, his breathing laboured; “You just stay away from me. You think I can't look after myself now after what he did to me, right? Well, fuck you.”
With that, Gerard turned and limped away, not even responding when Mikey and Ray called after him.
Mikey gestured angrily. “Great,” he snapped. “Just great.”
Frank stared after Gerard, distraught at the hateful words his lover had just used against him, and the anger Frank had recognised in his tone. How could Gerard truly believe Frank found him a coward? Or useless? His words had stung the Killjoy to his very core. He made to go after Gerard but his arm was grabbed from behind and he was pulled back.
“Wait. I'll go talk to him.”
Frank turned quickly to find Bert looking at him with something akin to distaste. Frank felt his hackles rise at once.
“That's fine. I'll go.” He tried to keep the dislike out of his tone. He didn't want to give Bert any more. “I'm his boyfriend.”
Bert raised an eyebrow. “Perhaps, but I think he could do with a friend right now, don't you?”
Frank felt as if he'd been stabbed in the gut. He couldn't think of a thing to say as he watched Bert turn and hurry after Gerard, catching up with his boyfriend and putting a supportive arm around his shoulder.
Frank felt sickened.
He turned tail and strode away, ignoring Ray and Mikey's concerned looks. He didn't want to have to see Bert comforting his boyfriend, telling him what he needed to hear. Frank cursed inwardly, he knew he had seriously fucked up good and proper this time.
He was a fucking idiot. He may as well have pushed Gerard towards Bert.
He made his way over to the Trans AM and climbed up onto the hood, staring straight ahead, trying to clear his head.
Gerard now thought that Frank found him weak and incapable of looking after himself, let alone the others. He felt Frank had questioned his leadership credentials. How could Gerard really believe Frank would do that?
Why couldn't Gerard see that Frank just wanted to protect him for a change?
Frank slammed his fist against the car hood. Why couldn't Gerard understand how Frank was feeling? Or maybe he just didn't care any more? Frank had come so close to losing his love, more than once, so very recently and of course it had affected him. His lover had died in his arms, for Christ's sake! How was Frank supposed to just move past that?
All Frank wanted to do was look after Gerard, to ensure that the enemy never got a chance to steal him away again. Was that so wrong?
Why did Gerard have to be so fucking proud all the time?
“You alright, Frank?”
The brunette looked up sharply, and his heart sank when he saw Bert walking towards him, cigarette in one hand, Fun Ghoul's his own ray gun in the other. Bert tossed him the gun, which he caught masterly, and then he placed the gun down on the car hood beside him.
“Thanks,” Frank muttered.
“Don't mention it,” Bert replied. Frank frowned as he felt Bert jumped up onto the Trans AM next to him. “That was a tough fight. Thought I'd better check in on you.”
“Nice of you, Bert, but I want some time alone actually.” Frank replied, his tone unfriendly. “Give me five minutes, yeah?”
“You seem preoccupied with something.” Bert offered, his voice oozing false concern. “Is anything wrong?”
Frank gritted his teeth. Even if he were in a sharing mood, he definitely would not be sharing anything with Bert McCracken. Not after the argument he and Gerard had just had that they all, including Bert, had witnessed.
“I'm fine,” he said, his tone harsh. “I just want to be alone.”
Frank's anger grew when he heard the other man's quiet chuckling. He balled his hands into fists.
Could Bert not take the hint?
“Honestly Bert,” Frank forced out. “I appreciate your worry and all, and I know you're trying to help, but I really don't want company from anyone right now.”
“Gerard will start to miss his little boyfriend if you're away too long, you know. Even if he is fucked off with you.”
Frank bristled at the note of sarcasm in his tone.
“I won't be long.” He ground out, when all he truly wanted to do was make Bert be silent. He wanted him gone. Instead, he plastered a fake smile on his lips and turned to regard the taller man. “I know we're heading off in a minute. I just needed a breather.”
“I understand,” Bert replied. “First the fight with the Dracs, then Gerard having a go at you when all you wanted to do was protect him...”
“Gerard is still under a lot of pressure,” Frank retorted, at once. “And he's still got a lot of recovering to do after what that fucker did to him. I know he didn't mean to attack me-”
“Really?” Bert smirked. “I wouldn't say that. He seemed pretty pissed to me. But then, you did make him look weak in front of the enemy, didn't you?”
Frank broke off. He stared at the smug man, hate flowing through him. He knew, at that moment, that it was no longer only distrust that he felt towards the former Used frontman. Now, it was pure, unadulterated hatred.
“He knows I love him.” He replied, trying to contain his anger.
Bert was clearly amused. “Sure he does,” he answered. “And I'm pretty certain he feels the same way. Or at least, he did. Before you allowed Korse to fuck him in the ass...”
Frank couldn't believe his ears. He knew Bert wanted a reaction from him, was testing his resolve and faith in his lover, but he had never wanted to cause another human being so much pain. Well, apart from Korse, naturally. That was how much Frank hated Bert in that moment, and he desperately wanted to beat the shit out of the taunting bastard. No. He wanted to kill him. Slowly and painfully.
And he could tell Bert loved it.
Frank couldn't hold back. He glowered at Bert, fists raised, and then paused when the sudden throbbing pain in his head returned with a vengeance. He gasped, grabbing onto his forehead with a shaky hand.
Bert watched him, his face neutral. He reached out then, grasping Frank's wrist and squeezed cruelly. Frank groaned and tried to pull away, but Bert held on to him firmly. He pulled him closer so he could hiss triumphantly into his ear:
“You should do something about those headaches, you know. They look painful.”
Frank, his face screwed up from the pain, stared at Bert, trying to figure him out.
'He knows. He knows how much this hurts. And he's getting off on it.'
Bert chuckled. "Maybe I can kiss it better?" He purred.
Before Frank could even register those words, Bert brought his other hand up to grip the back of his head to hold him steady as he then leaned in to gently press his lips to Frank's. Frank's stomach churned but he was powerless. This latest headache was the worst so far and he couldn't even see Bert clearly through the painful haze before his eyes, let alone fight back. Finally, Bert drew back, and released his hold on Frank's head and wrist.
“You taste great, Frank.” Bert purred. “Almost as good as Gerard.” He smiled. “From what I remember anyway. Man, I'd love to get me some fresh reminders.”
“S-tay away from G-Gerard,” Frank stammered through the pain. “Go near him and I'll-”
“Oh, come on, Frank;” Bert replied, amused. “I'm only fucking with you. Can't you take a joke these days?”
Frank all but fell off of the car and staggered two steps. He didn't want Bert near him. The man was creeping him out. He kissed him and then waved it aside by declaring it a 'joke'? Just what the hell was Bert's game?
“I want you to leave Gerard alone-” He managed, his eyes still crinkled up from the unrelenting agony.
Bert grinned cruelly. “Or what?” He crossed his arms over his chest in a mocking gesture. “What exactly are you gonna do if I don't?”
Suddenly, a voice spoke up from behind them, startling them both.
“Frank? Bert?” The two men turned to see Mikey standing a few feet away from them, eyeing them suspiciously. “What are you guys up to? It's time to leave and Gerard was getting worried.”
“No problem,” Bert replied, his tone nonchalant, leaping down from the hood, acting as if he and Frank had been having a pleasant conversation. “Frankie and I were just sorting some things out. I was just telling him that he needed to trust that Gerard could look after himself and Frank sees my point. It's all good. I'll get my bike ready and then follow behind you boys.” He glanced across and winked at Frank. “We're done here, right, Frank?”
Frank squirmed inwardly. His headache was fading, thankfully, and he could finally think clearly once more. The Dracs had attacked them in a battle formation, almost as if the whole thing had been planned. And how was that possible if the Dracs had just happened upon their camp? Unless, someone had told BLI where they were? Frank's face darkened as he thought back to the moment Bert had kissed him, or had assaulted him even, and he felt sick to his stomach. But, now with Mikey's intense stare fixed on him, he didn't know what to say. Gerard would probably not want to believe it or would simply turn into something light and harmless. 'Just Bert being Bert,' he would say.
So, despite his ever-growing desire to grab his ray gun, shove it into Bert's right eye and pull the trigger, Frank did nothing.
He nodded quickly to Bert, acknowledging that their discussion was over. He couldn't hold the man's gaze for longer than a second however, so he turned his back on the taller man and instead walked over to Mikey, his expression hard.
“I'm all set, Mikes;” Frank said quietly. “Lets go.”
It was raining again, inside the boundaries of the city. This was usual, it always seemed to rain. That was just how it was. The sun always shone down on the desert, the sand too hot to touch and the sun's harmful rays were enough to fry a person if they stayed out in that sunshine for too long. The sun was not such a problem for them in the city, thanks to the city’s protection, but the incessant rain and hail continued to crash down upon them. It didn't help keep the city dwellers morale up. Yes, they took the drugs that BL/I instructed them to take. And, the majority remained compliant and controllable, but there were whisperings that the constant rain was becoming hard for people to take. But the Coordinator didn't need to worry about such puny problems. Not when she still had the rebel scum to deal with.
She moved forward, still staring out of the window at the sunshine. Sun and rain always seemed so perplexing to her, but also beautiful. Just another reaction of nature from when the bombs had dropped. She stood in the Science Wing of the city, having been summoned there for two important reasons.
She turned to regard the figure sleeping on the bed before her. She reached out and gently stroked his cheek. A 'Crow appeared at her side and inclined his head politely.
“Madam, report from Zone 2. The Drac squadron you sent out to kill or capture the Killjoys are no longer traceable.”
She narrowed her eyes.
“You mean they are dead?” She glared. “More of my team murdered by those damned rebels.”
He seemed unsure of how to respond so he continued with his report. “We are still able to pinpoint the exact location of the Killjoys due to the Tracker, which is still activated.”
She smiled coldly. “Good.” She turned to regard the 'Crow. “And our back-up plan? How is that proceeding?”
“Very well, Ma'am. We remain in full contact.”
“Good,” the Coordinator noted. “Then the time has come for us to put the final play into motion.”
He stepped away as she turned her attention back to the sleeping man in front of her.
“How is he?”
The Crow inclined his head. “All signs are now normal. Although he will not awaken himself for another few days, it is now safe to bring him out of the coma now, madam.”
She paused for a moment, before instructing them: “Then do it.”
They flicked a few switches and then stood back. As the Coordinator watched, transfixed, Korse slowly began to open his eyes.
She waited for him to note his surroundings, and then leaned forward, touching his forehead gently.
“Korse, can you hear me? Time for you to wake up.” Then, she whispered in his ear. “I need you.”
With a deep breath, Korse focused his gaze on her, and then, he smiled.
He blinked furiously, trying to clear his vision.
The woman gently stroked his cheek, smiling down on him gently.
He cleared his throat carefully.
“How long was I out for this time?” He enquired.
“Just over a week,” she replied.
He flexed his muscles, and stretched his limbs, trying to regain the circulation.
She waited, watching him closely.
“I apologise that you do not have the time needed to regain your strength,” she told him. “But I must ask you, are you feeling able to return to work after your 'accident,' Korse?”
“I await your orders, Ma'am.” He hissed. “I am yours to command, as always.”
“I want you to go after the Killjoys. Do you feel up to that task?”
Korse smirked and then closed his eyes with a contented sigh. “The Killjoys will be easy pickings for me now, Coordinator. They will be nothing without their leader.”
The woman frowned, her eyes flaming.
“That would be true, Exterminator.” She replied. “If the leader of the Killjoys were actually dead.”
Korse opened his eyes and fixed her with a cold stare. Then, he blinked.
“Wait, what are you-”.
“Party Poison survived the torture drug, Korse. You did not kill him. Trust me, he is still very much alive and fighting on, so our reports say.”
Korse narrowed his eyes. He couldn't believe what he was hearing.
He'd won. Party Poison had died by his hand. How could he have survived?
He thought back to the last moments he could remember, and anger swelled within him once more, only this time aimed at a different Killjoy.
“And Ghoul? Did he-”
“Fun Ghoul escaped too. All four Killjoys have avoided capture so far. As has Dr. Death Defying, though he was seriously injured in the attack on the town.
Korse looked about ready to erupt.
“The Killjoy scum, where are they now?”
“They are all deep in the desert right now. The tracker you attached to Fun Ghoul is still active. We are following their every move, and also have secondary measures in place.” Her eyes twinkled. “The trap is closing, Korse. They cannot run from us anymore.”
Korse balled his hands into fists. “What is their current location?”
“Patience, my friend. Gerard Way will wait.” the Coordinator scolded. “There was another reason I woke you up now, Korse. There is something I want you to see.” She jerked her head, gesturing for him to join her at the window.
With a snarl of discomfort, and wrapping the robe further around himself, he did so. He edged his way carefully over to his superior and then looked through the glass. He was surprised to see a young woman sitting on a bed very much like his, her head bowed, and her hands covering her face. He looked at her with interest, a hint of recognition slowly creeping up on him as he noted her blond hair and tiny figure. There was something about her that was familiar, the way she held herself. He felt like he had seen her before.
Then, very carefully, she lifted her head and removed her hands from her face, gazing straight ahead, ignoring those watching her as if she was on display. Korse saw her clearly, and suddenly, it all dropped into place. He knew who she was, and with an ever-growing feeling of delight, he smiled.
Sensing their gazes upon her, the woman looked over at them. Her eyes were cold, and her cheeks were tear stained. Any thoughts that she was broken were dismissed however when she held up her middle finger to them and then looked down again. Then, she paused. Something seemed to dawn on her because seconds later, her eyes were drawn only to Korse, who smirked back at her. The woman's eyes widened.
After a moment’s pause where she continued to stare, with pure loathing, at the exterminator. She suddenly leaped down from the bed and rushed towards the window, punching the glass, trying to break it with her bear hands, desperate to get to Korse.
“You fucking sonofabitch! You killed him! You'll die next!” Tears cascaded down her face as she continued to pound uselessly against the glass. “Why don't you stop being a coward and get your ass in here? I'll tear you apart for what you did to him! I'll fucking make you scream, you piece of shit!”
Korse was amused. He merely laughed at her, his eyes twinkling as she was grabbed roughly by the two Dracs in the room with her and dragged away. He then winked at her, and kissed the glass, taking great pleasure in taunting her further.
“You know this woman, Korse?” The woman beside him asked, her voice showing her distaste. From her tone, it was clear that she did not approve of his behaviour, so he stepped back from the glass, eyes narrowed, before he responded to her.
Korse's eyes narrowed. “Yes. Lindsey Ballito, better known as LynZ. She is a rebel.”
“No, she WAS a rebel.” The coordinator corrected him. “Now, she is a test subject.”
Korse smirked. “She also has ties to the Killjoys, Gerard Way in particular.” He continued. “From what I've been able to discover about him, they were once romantically involved. Engaged to be married, even.” He sneered. “Before he spoke out against the corporation and became a wanted criminal.”
The Japanese woman nodded. “All of this makes sense. She was captured during the attack on that town. It seemed she had been drawn there having learned of her ex-love’s plight. From the information we have been able to pluck from interrogations and scans, she has been a hard one to break, it would seem she has not seen the rebel known as Party Poison for many years, but still cared enough to come running when she discovered he was in danger.”
Korse's mind was filled with Gerard's suffering at his hands and he smiled at the memory.
“She is not aware he lives?”
The woman shook her head. “We wanted her broken and her believing he died horribly seemed to aid in that.”
Korse chuckled. “I'm sure. But she is not broken completely, I see.”
“No, which is useful to us,” the Coordinator continued. “She is to be the test subject in a final experiment on a new device our scientists have been working on nonstop. A machine that will bring us victory against these rebels in a much quicker and efficient manner than using the Torture drug on them.
Korse was surprised. The drug and the shooter gun had been instrumental in their plans. He listened closely as she continued.
“Twice you have had Killjoys in your grasp, and twice they have escaped. First Poison, then Ghoul. We cannot allow this to happen again. The plan was to use the drug on the Killjoys to weaken and break them and then bring them back to me to reprogramme. This proved,” she paused, her eyes flaming; “difficult.”
The exterminator bristled. “I will catch them ma'am, I just need more time.”
“That is the problem, Korse. There is no more time. But, thankfully, the plans have changed.”
They approached her together, one man moved forward quickly to pin Lindsey down to the bed while the other leaned over her, the ugly looking device held tightly in his grip.
She stared at it ominously, any colour left in her cheeks draining away.
“Get your hands off of me,” she blurted out. “Don't you fucking touch me, you drone bastards!”
Korse, still standing beyond the glass, stared at the device in the scientist’s hands, his excitement building.
“That machine?” He asked. “What-”
“The 'Re-Programmer,'” The Coordinator answered, at once. “Just watch.”
Ignoring Lindsey's insults and threats, the second scientist continued to hold her down, while the first man slipped the device onto the struggling woman's head, pushing down her striking blond hair, and looping the connector over her earlobe. He then forced the long tube to go deep inside her ear, causing her to swear loudly.
He tutted at her, disapprovingly. “You will be at peace soon,” he told her. “You will not be scared for too much longer, Lindsey Ann Ballato. You have to trust us.”
Lindsey stared at the man before her with wide, fearful eyes.
“What are you going to do?” She asked, her voice cracking. “What is this thing?”
He smiled at her. “Your cure,” he whispered, stroking her hair as if she were his pet. “Don't be afraid, my dear. I just want to help you.”
Lindsey shook her head desperately. “I don't need curing. Don't do this.”
Korse chuckled. “These rebels,” he noted. “They never know what is good for them.”
The Coordinator nodded in agreement. “That is why we must force them to see reason, Korse.” She leaned forward. “When you are ready,” she instructed the scientists, her face expectant as her eyes scanned the now trembling Lindsey. “Please proceed.”
“Ma'am,” acknowledged the head Scientist and then he turned to his fellow White Coat, and barked a single order. “Begin.”
Showing no emotion whatsoever for the task he had been ordered to perform, or the life he was about to snuff out, the second scientist pulled down a lever, and then stood back, watching their guinea pig intently.
Lindsey gasped, the pain in her head taking her by surprise. The machine was sending signals directly through her ear into her brain and the thought terrified her.
And, already, she could hear the messages, telling her to be calm, to listen, to allow Better Living Industries to show her the way, slowly ebbing away everything that she had once been.
She closed her eyes, and clung on to her memories, trying to stop what they were doing.
Her parents, her family, her friends. Gerard; they were all fading.
She was forgetting.
“Please,” the stricken woman whimpered. “Turn it off. It hurts.”
The first scientist gestured to the other and he flicked switches again, putting the machine at full power.
Korse watched, mesmerised, as the device did its work, removing any trace of who this woman once was. He smiled contently. For the first time, he was pleased Gerard Way was still alive. To know that soon, he would have the pleasure of watching the same fate befalling the leader of the Killjoys. He could hardly wait.
Lindsey screamed loudly as the last of her memories were stripped from her, tears streaming down her face as the person she once was slowly died, leaving her an empty shell. She wanted to fight it, wanted to make them stop, but she was powerless. She clamped her hands over her head, and begged the men near by to let her go. To stop. They ignored her, watching, taking notes, waiting. Finally, she became still, her hands dropping compliantly to her sides. She stared back at the people watching her through the glass, blinking constantly. Her face was expressionless - there was nothing there, no individuality, and no personality.
She wasn't a person any more. They had turned into one of them. She was a droid.
Wiped and ready for reprogramming.
Two white coats moved forward cautiously, checking their subject closely. One shined a light into Lindsey’s eyes but she gave no reaction. The two men noted her movements and recorded her results as she sat there while they poked and prodded, not showing any signs of resistance at all.
Finally, they left her, turning instead to their waiting superiors, proud smiles on their faces.
“The experiment has been completed, Coordinator,” one of the scientists reported. “And the subject has been processed successfully, all signs of the person she once was have been lost.” He grabbed her arm and pushed her to the side, not bothering to be gentle. Lindsey didn't complain. He stepped forward as he again addressed the Coordinator. “It must be noted that the machine turns deadly to the subject if removed before the process is completed." He waved a hand in front of Lindsey's face and she turned to look at him. The scientist nodded, apparently satisfied. "The Re-Programmer is ready for the main target, ma'am.”
“Excellent,” the woman exclaimed. “Now we can move forward. I grow weary of these rebels and their beloved 'cause.' It's time to take the fight to them.”
Korse nodded his approval.
“A fine demonstration, ma'am,” he noted. “Our scientists have surpassed themselves once more.” He smirked. “Now, this main target he spoke of. Will you be wanting me to carry out the final tests for this machine on any further rebels, by chance?” He raised an eyebrow. “Any in particular?”
“Absolutely,” she replied, her tone playful. “I think you should pay our old friend Party Poison another visit, Exterminator. As soon as you feel up to it.”
He could hardly contain his glee as he inclined his head politely. “As you wish, ma'am.”
She beamed, and then looked back over at the now compliant Lindsey, who was standing in the centre of the room, completely non-resistant as the white coats continued to run various tests on her.
“In the mean time,” The Coordinator continued, “I feel it would be advantageous for us to send our new subject here out into the Zone on her first mission.” She smiled coldly. “I truly think it would be cruel to keep two lovers apart for a moment longer. Wouldn't you agree, Korse?”
Korse returned her evil grin with one of his own. “Indeed madam. Exceptionally cruel.”
The Coordinator pressed a hand against the glass. “We will make the final checks for her responses, give her a weapon, and put her into a patrol,” she ordered. “Send her into Zone 2.”
“Yes, Ma'am,” a 'Crow responded.
Korse chuckled coldly.
'Enjoy your gift, Gerard.'