Flickering soft yellow light danced around a quiet room with no windows, a single small bed, and a desk across form the only door sealed with an electronic keypad. Lying down in the bed a sandy colored ferret dressed in a white lab coat lifted his truncated left arm watching the shadows play across the sterile dressings wrapped around the stump. Amber eyes squinted in disgust as the scientist weighted his recent actions verses his monumental accomplishments. Across room from him a young white tailed fawn waited to be addressed as he provided the only light in the room, his own blue eyes staring off into the distance in slight defocus.
“In the pursuit of lofty goals, I have crafted the very weapon that has rent my ambitions asunder,” Doctor Andrews spoke quietly contemplating his situation, “Tell me Spatch, have I like Icarus, reached to high and burnt off my wings in the heat of the sun? Am I doomed to plummet back down to become a cautionary tale for those of excess hubris?”
Opening his eyes at the question the fawn regarded the scientist the flame floating above his head flaring and flickering while the cub considered the possibilities.
“Misfortune surrounds many of the avenues that await you Doctor Andrews.” The fawn said speaking softly, “Though you are faced with tremendous obstacles, at the very least, you will endure them for quiet some time. You journey is far from over.”
Looking over at the fawn the ferret narrowed his eyes, never being one to give into superstition, but it was his own application of scientific knowledge that gave the cub foresight of almost unshakable accuracy.
“And how do the coming days of our mutual friend Jason look?” Dr. Andrews asked, the healing pelt under his bandages inching at the memory of the latest escape. “How fortunate will they play out for him?”
Spatch turned his head to the side, the tongue of flame dimming in size and turning blue for a moment.
“It is difficult to be certain,” The fawn said pulling back in his chair shaking his head as if to clear a distorted image from his mind, “While Jason utilizes his power he remains in a haze of opportunity. Nothing is clear with him, it never really was.”
The ferret sighed as yet another of his greatest achievements found ways to inconvenience him. Disbelieving karma the scientist was vexed, unable to understand why some of his creations had decided to abandon the work and gifts he had given them. True this was due to the sociopathic nature of the doctor but it also kept him from going out of his way to inflict cruel punishments on his test subjects. While Dr Andrews struggled with the moral dilemma the doors control panel winked green as the steel panels split apart.
“Dr. Andrews, its time.” The grey furred fox dragon hybrid Foxie stepped inside. “The board is waiting to speak with us.”
Standing up the ferret sighed as he prepared to meet his finical masters. Stopping at the door the scientist turns around to fix Spatch with a stern expression.
“You better be right my little fortune cookie.” Dr. Andrew warns as the flame disappears from above the fawns head. “Keep looking ahead for your brothers that have escaped. The sooner you do the sooner you can go back to your own quest.”
The fawn nods as the scientists turn walking out of the room leaving the cub all alone as the panels close behind them. Opening the desk drawer Spatch pulls out a leather journal bond together by a string turning to a blank page. Lifting a pen the cub closes his eyes as the recalls a distant future were his parents are with him that has always been eluding him. Writing down a list the fawn marks off all the activities and plans he has foreseen, certain that one day after serving faithfully, his visions would turn to reality just as all the others have done so before.
Walking along side his sole equal in the secure lab Dr. Andrews fidgets with his dressing, casting irritated glances at his colleague. For his part Foxie ignored the ferret showing no signs of apprehension for the meeting with the collective bosses. Dr. Andrews reflected that this nonchalant attitude was due to hybrid’s ability to respawn meaning his partner had little to fear in the form of reprisals. The twitch in the ferret’s dismembered limb reminded the scientist he’d have to watch his words in front of the board of directors.
Stopping before the elevator the dragon half breed slide his card in the console and punched in the code for the communications chamber. Ridding the car to the top floor the scientist stepped out into a large white circular room lined with twelve blank viewing screens. Once the pair had reached the center of the room a cheerful three tone chime rang out as the panels flickered to life and the room’s lighting dimmed. Each screen showed the silhouette of an unidentifiable fur with species ranging from wolf to feline to antlered deer, and rodent.
“Dr. Andrews, we have received your lasted report over the lapse of security and have come to a judgment regarding the course of action need to remedy this facilities latest breech.” The masculine tones of the wolf silhouette rang out, “The continued porous nature of your guard detail will require a complete transfer of personal with a newer more efficient squad of officers.”
“I wise course of action sir,” The ferret spoke agreeing despite knowing the current guards would most likely be eliminated for their failure, “Has the board come to a decision on my proposed recovery operation?”
“We have,” A feline silhouette spoke out in an effeminate voice, “Your request to hire on a mercenary group to effect the retrieval has been rejected.”
“On what bases has the decision been made?” The ferret asked as he chewed his lip, “The team I put forward has work well with us before. They never showed qualms about the nature of our work, and is trained for urban tracking and engagement. They would be best suited for this work.”
“They, like your self are inefficient for taking on the Anointed.” An otter called out in sneering overtones, “You could not stop them with mundane measures, so we will be going with a new approach. We intend to fight fire with fire.”
The room fell into silence as Dr. Andrews took that in, staring from one screen to the next. Turning around he stared at Foxie looking for back up in his argument as it formed in his head.
“As your lead geneticist I must warn you against this course of action.” The ferret spoke forcefully as he paced the room looking each of the members for effect, “The list of abilities our escapees’ possess are considerable, and any conflict with them will already have a heightened risk of our work becoming exposed. The public can not find out what we are working on. Exposure endangers all of us.”
“Containment is no longer an option.” The silhouette of the deer said, his impressive rank taking up half of his screen, “We have to proceed with all haste to neutralize the run aways. Foxie will lead a team of our loyal subjects into the field to combat them and retrieve their bodies. You will provide communication and internet suppression from the facility.”
From the other side of the room a lift opened up as a trio of cubs stepped out. Leading the pack into the room a teenaged silver fox with blue paws stood between a young light brown kangaroo and a pale grey otter. All of the cubs were dressed in grey cargo pants, black under shirts, grey vests and stood at ease with paws shoulder length apart and hands behind their backs. Stepping up to inspect the line Foxie nodded handing each member a wrist watch and electronic identity card.
“Telepathy, Enhanced Strength, Electrical manipulation, and Fire burst.” Dr. Andrews counted off in order as he looked at the group unable to hide his sarcasm, “Because that’s all sorts of subtle.”
“This will be more than enough for an advanced scouting team,” The deer spoke out as Foxie turned and waited for orders, “We will take them at moments of opportunity, one at a time to minimize exposure and property damage.”
“Even with strategy and trapping them one at a time there’s still Jason,” Dr. Andrews said giving Foxie a glare for going along with this dangerous plan so easily, “You should take Saila as well to counter Jason’s ability.”
“Saila is too young to be reliable for this mission,” The feline calls out regarding the five year old arctic fox raccoon hybrid, “And we can not risk losing another crono manipulator. Foxie you are free to begin your mission. Dr. Andrews please wait so we can discuss your future employment.”
Taking the group of cubs back to the other lift Foxie leads his squad our out of the chamber leaving Dr. Andrews alone with the board. Looking around with barely contain frustration the ferret watched the doors of the lift close locking him in with his task masters.
“Dr. Andrews, we are concerned with your injury and your ability to perform due to it,” The otter silhouette spoke out, “As such we have hired a consultant to address the problem. Until he arrives you will be confined to the network floor for security reasons. In the mean time between missions you will be required to back up and submit all your research on the Resurrection Genome. We expect it within three weeks.”
“I understand,” Dr. Andrews frowned as his crowning achievement was going to be shared with others and what that implicated, “I’ll get right on it.”
“That will be all,” The wolf called out as the panels turned dark and the room light back up, “You are dismissed.”
Grumbling to himself as he rode the lift down to the network floor, Dr. Andrews began to formulate a back up plan as his only real insurance card was about to be snatched away. Thinking about it the ferret realized that he too might have to affect his own escape, a pity he had scared off all the cubs that could have helped him.
Tiny clouds of vapor puffed up from under a pile of warm blanket as Jason slumbered away safely occupied by pleasant dreams. Watching from atop of a battered set of crates a small white wolf pup with grey markings stared at the sleeping kit with off set green and blue eyes. Swinging his legs back and forth impatiently, the guard wolf whined before hoping down and nudging the slumbering kit. Moaning at the disturbance Jason pulled the blankets over his head mumbling to himself calling out for five more minutes.
“Wake up!” The canine pup called out as he pointed a finger at the raccoon kit and green glow collecting at the tip as a tongue of flame erupted above his head, “Lazy bones!”
Flicking his wrist the wolf cub sent the green glow into the pile of blankets. Sinking in the point of emerald light disappeared before a sharp creak rang out and the covers flew off in all directions. Bolting up tail puffing out in shock Jason sat up screaming.
“Ah, I’m up I’m up!” The kit looked around wildly then noticed his tail was on fire. “Ah, I’m on fire!”
The wolf pup toppled over laughing as Jason swatted at his bushy tail patting out the flames. Looking up disgruntled the kit glared at his tormentor hugging his tail in front of him as a shield.
“What you do that for?” The kit hissed as an older German shepherd cub ran into see what was going on, “Who are you?”
“His name is Gin,” The German Shepard called out he called his own tongue of flame to life, snuffing out the remaining fire from a distant. “And he did it because he’s a spazz.”
“I am not!” Gin said as he stood up holding out a paw for Jason to shake. “Remember me Jason? I didn’t mean no harm, but you won’t wake up. I was worried you’d lose your memory again.”
The raccoon kit shook his head, the name sounded familiar as he gingerly took the paw offered. The German shepherd watched him with a scrutinizing eye.
“I think I now you.” Jason said slowly thinking back as hard as he could nose all scrunched up. “And your Kyle right?”
“Got in one, good job,” The older canine said with a smile, “Come on, join us for some breakfast, I bet your real hungry.”
Jason nodded as his tummy grumbled following along behind Kyle and Gin. Looking around the kit took in the abandoned warehouse peering into all the shadows and hanging machinery nervously. As they reached an old conference room equipped with a fridge, microwave and table, Kyle started to pull out sausages and oat meal setting up breakfast as Gin sat on a wheeled chair pushing him self around the room giggling madly. Taking a seat Jason fidgeted as he looked around feeling baffled but reassured surrounded by other cubs like him.
“Is Andy better yet?” The kit asked as the German Shepard placed a hot bowl of oatmeal down for him to dig into, “I wanna see him.”
Kyle looked over at Jason as Gin smacked his spoon into the oatmeal playing around absent minded. Taking a bite the older canine thought about it as he ate.
“Andy should be healed up today,” Kyle spoke confidently, “Kevin watching over him, he’s not going any where so eat up, once we done we can check up on him.”
Jason nodded spooning the hot soggy mush into his muzzle wishing for the more filling breakfast of the hospital you used to stay in. Munching on his sausages the kit recalled how Foxie had tried to attack him, feeling upset and confused but knowing he couldn’t go back now.
“Are there any other cubs like us here?” The kit asked recalling the white rabbit and black fox that helped him out of the tunnel the other day. “How many of us escaped the hospital.”
“There were seven of us that got out,” Gin informed the kit as the white wolf played with his food, “The others are out getting more food for us, but they have to steal it cause we don’t got any money.”
“They’ll be back tonight and we’ll introduce them to you then,” Kyle said reaching out to lightly smack Gin’ paws before he made a mess. “They’ll be happy to see you got out too; we didn’t think you were going to join us.”
“What do you mean I wasn’t going to join you?” Jason asked confused struggling to recall the events leading up to the jail break, “I though I wanted to get out too, just like everyone else.”
Kyle looked surprised for a moment but it passed as Gin knocked over his plate. Bending down the German shepherd cleaned up the mess and collects the other plates so he could wash them.
“Well, I wasn’t sure at the time of the escape,” Kyle said as he rinsed the dishes in the sink, “You took off leading the guards away from us, I hadn’t talk to you about running away, so it was a surprise when you showed up with Andy. But I’m sure you must have worked out the plan with him at the time, don’t worry I’m sure it’ll all come back in time.”
“I hope so.” Jason said as Gin smiled bravely at him from across the table. “I hate not remembering, I forgot all my friends.”
“Ah, that won’t do,” Gin said getting up running around the table to give Jason a hug, “We’ll remember for you until it comes back. That’s what friends are for, right?”
“Right,” Jason said hugging back tightly as he took comfort in the affection displayed from the young wolf pup, “Thanks Gin, Kyle, I don’t know what I’d do with out you guys.”
Standing up Gin made room for the German shepherd to give the kit a reassuring hug too. Stepping back out of the embrace after a good minute Kyle took Jason’s paw in his own.
“Come on,” The German shepherd said as he led the kit and pup out the room, “Let’s go check on Andy.”
Watching over the prone figure of a sandy colored ferret kit with a concerned look a snowy white rabbit brushed the bangs way from the light brown face mask. Stirring from the touch Andy opened his amber eyes looking up with a reassuring smile at his friend.
“How long was I out for?” The little ferret asked the bunny tending him, “Is Jason all right?”
“He’s fine,” Kevin replied as he took a hold of Andy’s paw, “But he’s still confused, and can’t remember everything. That’s going to be a problem.”
Sitting up Andy looked around for his cloths, pawing against his tummy and ribs gently felling the mended bones back in one piece. With Kevin’s help the bold kit stood up and slipped on a loose fitting cut off shorts and t-shirt.
“We’ll just have to fill in the blanks as we go,” Andy said as the rabbit watched unconvinced, “I had to do it, you know that, but he’ll only know what we tell him. Trust me; I know what I’m doing.”
Kevin looked sad for a moment as his blue eyes narrowed and he looked away from his friend. Crossing his arms over his chest the bunny tucked his chin down in disapproval.
“It’s not right,” Kevin whispered ears twitching a bit, “It’s not fair to him to keep his past a secret. It makes us no better then the quakes that experimented on us.”
“There is a difference,” Andy said looking at the door listening for anyone approaching, “We’re not using him. He has every right to be free like us. Once he sees what he was denied he won’t want to go back.”
“I hope your right Andy,” Kevin looked back fixing the ferret with a stern expression, “I hope he sees it that way too.”
A knock came from the door as Gin called out to let the pair know they had company. Opening the door Andy gave Jason a reassuring hug as he entered, while Gin went bouncing around. Staring at the display Kevin gave Kyle the same look of concern the german shepherd sent his way knowing things had become much more complicated for their group of run aways.