‘Sir, are you awake Sir?‘ Dag whispered close to Adam’s ear in a voice charged with hope and apprehension.
Adam shook his head to clear his mind and let the boy know he was aware but didn‘t open his eyes. His head still thundered, his jaw ached, yeah, he
‘She’s gone to have her teeth fixed.’ Dag continued, ‘We gotta get outta here before she gets back!’ Dag shook Adam’s shoulder a little
too enthusiastically to please the Doctor’s headache.
‘How long have I been out?’ Adam asked refusing to open his eyes.
‘Not long Sir, I just had time enough to bring you food and something to drink.’ Dag‘s voice floated to him from across the room.
Relieved he was no longer naked or bound Adam slowly sat up, his head hanging low between his shoulders, elbows on his knees, eyes focused on the
floor waiting for the room to stop spinning. Blinking hard Adam did a double take and cringed. His right hand was missing, a raw red stump it’s
scars fresh and puckering where his hand had been. Explains the cryo-freeze he thought swallowing acrid bile rising in his throat. Amputees were
unheard of this day in age but no one had bothered to affix a Graft-X pack to his wound.
‘She said it would be a waste of good supplies Sir.’ Dag returned to his side grimacing at Adam’s stump. ‘Bransom says you’re gonna be
executed for treason and desertion so no need to fix your...‘ Dag stopped talking when Adam waved him off, but doggedly the youth pushed a tray of
food his way. Adam shook his head and motioned to the side of the bed where Dag took a seat food still in hand.
‘You told her. About my eyes. About the memory planting I used on you during the attack - when I thought you were going to die.’ It was a
statement not a question. His gentle tone held no reproach just a deep sorrow for the torture the boy must have gone through.
‘Yes Sir! I mean, no Sir!’ Dag began and stopped, stuttered and started again. ‘I mean...‘ His words came out in a rush, ‘Oh yes Sir, I
told her!’ Dag jumped to his feet sending the food tray flying. ‘But Sir, I didn't mean to Sir.’ His voice cracked. ’She...made me.’ He
choked on a sob. ’She...hurt me...Sir.‘ Dag fell to his knees reaching for the tray his face upturned, his silver blue eyes imploring his Hero
to forgive him. And he did. Adam opened his arms to the boy engulfing him in a tight hug while clenching his aching jaw in fury. Dag’s heart beat
like a trapped sparrows against his chest.
‘She can be pretty damn persuasive
eh son?’ Adam swallowed his anger for the boys sake and smiling knocked his knuckles gently against the
youth chin. Dag‘s face radiated pure joy at being forgiven and ungainly at best he clambered to his feet the thick swath of white blond hair
forever falling over his forehead hiding unshed tears.
‘Yes Sir, she can be...persuasive...’ Dag’s voice clouded over remembering the torture dashing his hands against his wet cheeks. ’But, now
that you’re awake we can go, right Sir?’ Dag brightened.
Oh for the resilience of youth Adam thought and smiled again. ‘No Dag, we can’t go now...’
Dag interrupted him. ‘Then you’ll leave me here, Sir? With her
Sir?’ Dag’s face lost all it’s color as his blood turned to water
at the thought.
‘No son, I’ll no leave you here with her
.’ Adam griped the boys shoulder in reassurance. ‘Now go get me a Graft-X pack and be quick
about it.’ Adam listed a few other items he thought they’d need, the boy’s eyes widened but he asked no questions and rushed to do as he’d
Rising to pace the room Adam tried at calm, but he was furious. Furious at Bransom’s cruel treatment of Dag. An innocent. He wanted to kill her,
but his own base desire to do her violence disgusted him. Adam made his way to a small portal in the side of the room to stare into space. Deep,
Footsteps approached from behind, heavy treads that were definitely not Dag. Adam refused to turn and face her.
‘So. You’re up.’ Bransom observed coldly, no lisp, once again all President of the Federation Star Ship Iliad.
‘Yes Mam, I am. Thank you for my accommodations
.‘ He countered, a generous dose of sarcasm mixed with sour thanks.
‘You’ve no doubt heard you’re scheduled for imminent
extermination?’ Bransom’s passed over his comment repaying his sarcasm with
some of her own.
‘Yes, Mam. Your assistant told me...’
‘RAT! Not assistant
! That thing
isn’t even a ’boy’! You Doctors
and your sympathies! He’s a LAB RAT, nothing
more’! She spat momentarily loosing her composure her hand flying to her mouth involuntarily checking her two new front teeth glad now she hadn't
insisted he tuned to face her.
‘Have it your way Bransom, as you wish. Your ‘Rat’
informed me of your decision.’ Adam almost wiped his mouth after using the
derogatory term for his friend.
‘Any questions then?’ Bransom asked by rote.
‘Yes Mam. Just one...’ Turning to face her Adam took a long stride forward and stopped just inches from her face. She didn’t even have time to
flinch. His eyes, as deep and fathomless as space froze the President’s movement, thoughts, and snatched the breath from her throat. Adam allowed
her heart to keep beating, but only barely.
Instantly her mind and secrets became his. Adam hastily scanned her memory gleaming for information he needed to save himself and his young friend.
Finding what he sought Adam leaned forward his eyes probing deeper, this time ready to give, not take.
Against his baser nature the hypnotist’s tone turned warm as sun spun honey promising Bransom her wildest dreams. Cursing her would only curse
himself. Killing her? He’d loose his gift. So Adam spoke softly, hurriedly and only after his eyes crinkled in a private joke did he right
himself and move back to where he first stood, his back to the door like when she’d entered the room only moments before.
‘Any questions then?’ Bransom repeated as if their exchange had never occurred.
‘No Mam, I’m at your ‘disposal’ Mam.’ Adam replied carefully. It would take her psyche a few moments more to succumb completely.
‘Guards!’ Bransom’s shout was followed instantly by the appearance of two huge Federation Bio-Guards who tried to enter the cell at once,
bumped shoulders, and like bad vaudeville tried again before remaining at the door. Nothing like a Federation product to be big on muscle and short
‘Stand fast and watch the Doctor.’ Her voice noticeably softened as she pointed Adam’s way. ’And no one comes in or out of this room other
than that Rat
. I mean, assistant!’ Bransom’s eyes blinked once then popped open as she tried to correct herself - but she wasn’t quick
enough. The President took full swing and smacked herself across the face the sound of her hand hitting her fleshy jowls a deafening crack. The blow
sent her two new front teeth flying across the room to clatter against the wall and fall to the floor.
The guards straightened in place averting their eyes. They didn’t dare question her behavior, didn’t dare move. They‘d been trained by Bransom
well. Follow her orders to the ‘t’ or meet with immediate termination.
‘I’ll be rith back’ Bransom lisped, rocking her jaw back and forth in one palm while trying to gather her dignity by smoothing the front of her
uniform with the other.
Adam waited for an explosion but none came.
Bransom turned to leave but before she went she stopped, looked back at Adam, cocked her head sideways a faint frown puckering her brows and the
corners of her mouth.
Adam simply blinked.
Bransom’s frown melted into a lovesick smile a soft blush staining her cheeks. Adam nearly crowed in triumph. She was his. The President left the
room pushing her way between the stoic guards who saluted smartly slapping their arms to their chests.
Just outside in the corridor returning from his errands hands full of equipment Dag recoiled at the site of Bransom coming at him but the President
took no notice and continued on her way straight past the youth. Trembling Dag waited at the door out of arms reach of the guards.
‘Guards, my assistant Dag, let him pass,’ Adam wagged his finger left then right the guards moved aside obeying instantly as if they too had
fallen under his spell.
‘Sir?’ Dag was all eyes his face pale. ‘No questions.’ Adam moved forward all action. ’Get to work man, we’ve only a few moments.’
Adam focused his energy on his arm and held it out for the boy who immediately began preparing it for a graft. Within minutes the process was
completed Adam’s stump bandaged, they were ready to go.
‘Ok, listen close. I want you to hide, behind the door should do. When Bransom comes back she may or may not be herself
so you must keep
out of her sight.’ Adam jerked his head refusing questions. ‘I said I’d not leave you and I will’na.’ Narrowed at their corners his eyes
gave Dag courage in a blink. ‘You’ll stay behind the door until I give the signal, then you move to my side and hang on tight.’ Adam lifted
his good arm showing the boy what he meant. ‘Now go, and whatever you do be quiet!’ Adam motioned the boy away and none too soon - Bransom had
‘Guarths!’ She bellowed. The ‘guarths’ turned and saluted. ‘Waith here! I’ll rethy tha prithoner for eththerminathion!’ Bransom
moved inside the room closing the door slightly behind her giving Dag the fright of his life. Adam raised his finger to his lips to silence the boy.
Bransom, oblivious, stared at Adam with drool glistening on her chin as she poked and worried the space between her teeth with her slug like
‘Tho! Are thu ready thu thie? Bransom bawled stomping to Adam‘s side where she gave him a telling conspiratorial wink saying her words and
bluster were all an act for the guards.
Almost cooing the President spoke sotto voice, ‘Here’th whath you athed for...tharling
, ’ her stumpy eyelashes batting in a flurry while
handing Adam something small flashing many colored lights.
‘Thank you, darling
.’ Adam sighed in relief his hand closing around the object inadvertently brushing her sausage like fingers. His gaze
turned up to Bransom who colored hotly.
‘Why thu thog thu...’ She bat her eyes again remembering Adam’s thought promises, her tongue continuing to poke in and out of the hole between
her teeth. Then with her face molded into a cherubic smile, she dipped her head forward her eyes held tightly shut, her lips puckered inviting
Complete surrender. It was all Adam needed to convince himself now was the time for action.
Raising his good hand to signal Dag Adam knew he was taking a chance exposing the boys presence so soon and he was right. Bitter surprise and clouded
uncertainty mingled with disgust registered behind Bransom’s eyes at the appearance of the youth.
‘Buth, tharling! I thogth... I thogth we were going thu go alone?’ Bransom whined, her eyes blinking furiously trying to clear the confusion in
her head. He’d promised her they’d go alone!
going alone,’ Adam’s gaze turned hard, unblinking and like a serpent to it’s prey he tapped into her mind once again with his
piercing eyes. ‘And before we do you’re going to do one more little thing darling,
’ Adam snarled, his trap exposed. Bransom's’ eyes
cleared in understanding of what he’d done, his control of her but she was helpless to do anything about it caught as she was in his stare.
‘Whath...thu...wanth!’ Her words came slow and thunderous her body shaking and fighting compliance.
‘Say it again. Just once. And then you’ll be all better
, bak to your old self even.’ Adam blinked his command, his hand closed in
ready over the tele-tab, Dag’s grip tightening painfully on his arm.
‘Nooo! I...thill...noth!’ Bransom struggled frantically pitting her mind against his in a loosing battle.
‘Yes, you will...‘ Adam’s voice lowered, ‘Say it! On one... Two... Three... Rat
‘Rrr...a...thh!’ Bransom breath exploded, her eyes bugged out of her head. She stuttered and tried to correct herself but wasn’t quick enough.
Looking down at her own beefy hand in horror Bransom tried to duck the punch but instead slugged herself full in the face with such force the blow
sent her head spinning and two more teeth flying across the room - as Adam and Dag spun and flew out of sight.
edit on 20-1-2011 by silo13 because: peace