Torn: Shards

Shard raced downwards. She could sense the Neo down below, getting closer with every step.

“What is happening?” the voice was Logos and she silently cursed, “Shard, what is happening?”

“OSEC, they were here quicker than we anticipated.” She could feel a pressure building against her mind, something trying to force its way in.

“No!” she screamed, “I can get away, I can..” she stumbled as the presence battered at her mental defences. “Please,” she breathed.

“One chance,” Logos agreed and the pressure was suddenly gone as she renewed her pace and drew two throwing daggers from the brace at her belt. Any second now they would be…

Back at the top of the stairwell. For Shard, looking around she was back exactly where she started. Wren’s eyes rolled in his head as he shaped what she’d see. As long as he was able to keep her in this loop, there was a chance Lima, though prepped and ready, wouldn’t have to put her down. If they could get a New Way Neo - live, back to OSEC? Wren was too busy casting the illusion to think about it.

Shard stood confused for a moment running down the stairs only to again fin herself back where she started. “FUCK!” She yelled. “FUCK!” The Neo who looped was good. She had gotten snagged and didn’t even pick up on it right away.

Well she had a few tricks up her sleeves. She was pretty sure she was standing like a lump at the top of the starwell and this was all in her mind's eye. Shared flicked her fingers summoning dark purple electronic claws and slashed at the walls of the illusion. “Come out come out wherever you are.” She sang visual tearing at the loop she was trapped in.

“Damn.” Wren swore, watching his loop be torn to shreds. “All right, you want to play? Let’s play.” The steps below Shard’s feet disappeared, leaving her free floating into nothingness. Wren moved his hands opposite each other, and sent the rooms she fell through spinning at dizzying speeds.

Shard thrusted her hands out to stop her spinning and moved to spinning counter to the rest of the world protecting herself in a shiney bubble. She rocketed blindly against the bound of the illusion causing literally cracks to start forming.

Blood dripped from Wren’s nose as he watched cracks form in his illusion like plaster falling from a wall. He concentrated harder, as a thick, tar-like coating filled in the cracks and trapped the bubble containing Shard. As it connected with the wall, the black tar began to envelope the orb she was using for protection.

The shield was becoming quickly coated in the black stuff weigh her down until it was all but useless. Shard slough the shield away as well as the tarry black stuff. “You wanna dance! LET’S DANCE!” The Neo shreeched summoned red goblin with fire for hair. “BURN IT DOWN.” She yelled letting the little virus minions go nuts.

“That’s what you’re bringing to the party?” Wren countered as gaping holes started to form in the tar, each one spouting water as if the wall itself was holding back a dam. A flick of his hand and the wall gave way, flooding the room with rushing water. “Give up yet?”

The guy was quick on his feet. Shard was losing time and the damnable jailor of his was going to nab her! It was now or never. “Not nearly done!” She sputtered treading the water as her fire goblins were extinguished. Shard vomited up an egg. It hatched immediately when it touched the water, the little eel like creature swam growing rapidly grow at a frighteningly exponential rate. The thing now the size of a school bus roared as it continued to grow threatening to outgrow the parameters of the illusion though Shard herself was at risk of being crushed by her own creation.

Wren struggled with the weight and size of the creature, as the walls of his scape began to bow outwardly. In a last ditch effort, he faced his palm towards the water and sent a lightning bolt, crackling with electricity, towards the water.

Shard couldn’t scream has her body spasmed. However the creature was to big to kill outright as it thrashed violently. Shard helplessly was toss about nearly be crushed in the coils of the beast!

The fight between the Neos where taking place at an accelerated pace so not even a minute had passed in the real world. Shard was shaking violently blood pouring from her nose and Lima bounded up closing the distance and without missing a beat decked Shard directly in the face mask.

Big cracks started to form in Wren’s scape, flaking off like shards of glass from a broken mirror, but with the help of his Alpha, the rogue Neo was taken off guard. Wren let the ground give way beneath Shard and her giant Eel, and once again she began falling, only to find herself flat on her back on the landing of the stairwell.

Shard looked up wide eyed at the copper eyes Alpha her face twisted in pain. “Well… shit.” Shard coughed.

“Damn right,” Lima said grabbing as he went to zip tie her hand. He was trying really hard not to just pitch her the fast way down to the bottom floor. It was her and her ilk that got Zulu killed in the first place.

Shard though was oddly compliant as far as she was concerned she fate was now sealed and she closed her eyes know what was to come next. “We are one with the machine,” she murmured.

Wren was trying to read any code, access any information about the New Way or Logos, but everything was encrypted, an encryption he’d never seen before. Nothing was accessible, except for one file, which seemingly showed up out of nowhere. Nano-seconds later he’d realize what it was. “RUN!” He told his Alpha, his eyes flickering back and forth as he watched the destruction sequence lock in place.

Like all bonded Alphas, Lima didn’t need an explanation, he immediately put himself between Wren and the Rogue, gathering up his Neo in his arms as he bounded down the steps. Wren tried to snap the connection with the “Chosen,” and was hit with a mind-numbing, stabbing pain, followed by a brilliant flash of light brighter than he’d ever experienced.

As the blast went off, the Rogue Neo screamed, her body literally being torn apart as the suit she wore exploded into infinitesimal particles. Lima shielded Wren between himself and the wall as chunks of flesh and blood ricocheted off his body, sticking to the walls. It left a grotesque outline of him as he shielded his Neo, which, being Lima, he found funnier than he should have.

“You see that?” He joked, pointing to the wall, but Wren, visibly pale and dazed shook his head. “Wren?” Lima asked, his voice full of concern.

Wren shook his head again, he didn’t see that, didn’t see any of that. The last thing he’d seen was the blazing light that now brought him into complete darkness. In shock, he held tight to his Alpha for comfort. “Li - I can’t see anything!”

(Cross-post LargeHobbit, Winters, Blitzen)

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