Slice No More
by Rob Richardson
Slice could hear them making plans. He’d heard Abbie say the name “Henry Jones”. It meant nothing to him. He’d just been sent to catch his sister.
His body was racked with pain. He tried in vain to crane his neck but couldn’t. His face was now one with the bonnet of the car. He tried to lift his legs and found that the left one would shift but his right was a mess of flesh and circuitry. As he dragged the opposite leg over the remains of the windshield he could feel it being torn open by the remaining glass.
“You got me girls.” He smiled. Blood trickled from his mouth as he did so and began to fill up the inside of his mask. Not that it mattered, he couldn’t see anything. His eyes had exploded in a pulp of white matter and nerves.
He’ d been in worse situations.
He heard them run and he tried again to shift but nothing happened. His left arm was at an odd angle to the rest of his body. The fact that he could feel his fingers at the base of his spine suggested as much.
His right hand could move though. That was all he needed. On the inside of his glove he felt for a pin and rubbed his finger against it. A tiny vial cracked open and fluid bled into the cut he’d just made in his finger.
Bled being the right word.
When the MRC had first began its research in Metas and their powers, Healers had been the ones they’d been most interested in. They were impossible to kill at first, only severing the head stopped them, but, what with them being dead, made them impossible to analyze. A dead Healer atomized on death due to their increased metabolism and disruption of the healing factor – years of injuries suddenly caught up with them and rot set in, destroying the body. Healers was probably the wrong word; their power meant that injuries sustained were ‘slowed’ in time so the injury never caused death.
The one they’d caught alive and captured was held in a cryogenic tank at MRC headquarters. A single drop of its blood was given to every MRC field agent to be used in extreme emergencies. The power would transfer and heal injuries they received. The liquid was only to be used in extenuating circumstances as it was difficult to replace and had unforeseen side effects. The person using the Healers blood was often racked with enormous pain, putting their body under massive distress. After the process they could suffer memory loss, paranoia and an adrenalin burst that influenced rage and anger, making the agent particularly unstable for a brief period.
Slice had used this only once before after a helicopter had exploded around him when he was pursuing a Flamer. He’d loved the feeling of rage brought about by the process but he hadn’t suffered from any of the memory loss.
That wasn’t to say it wouldn’t happen this time though.
He felt the liquid enter his bloodstream. His internal organs were filled with an unknown fire. He embraced it. He lusted for it. Then the adrenalin burst came. But it came too early. He heart beat faster than it ever had before. He felt his bones fuse and his muscle regrow. His eyes began to change from the consistency of mashed potato back into the squishy balls inside his eye sockets.
But the pain was too much this time. Too much damage had been done. He blacked out.
Gabriel Snow rolled over next to the remains of an SUV. The car had obviously been in some sort of massive accident. The windshield was smashed open and the back doors ripped off.
He didn’t recognize the area he was in. He was lost. Why couldn’t he remember anything?
He could remember seeing Abbie. They’d had an argument and he’d run away. Jack hadn’t helped matters. He always sided with mum and dad over him.
He stood up and looked down at leather gloved hands and his torn suit covered in armor. A mask was attached to his face, one he couldn’t remove no matter how hard he tried. Readouts flashed with static in front of him. They were no longer transmitting or receiving. What the hell was going on?!
Abbie would know. He could speak to his big sister. Now was the time to make amends. He’d heard her speaking, somehow.
“Henry Jones,” she’d said.
If he could find Henry, he’d find his sister.
Gabriel set off down the alley; lost, lonely and afraid.
Slice was gone.