Society of Justice 3: Crisis on the Earth

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Tommy stepped out of the clothier's shop and into the Paris streets. He'd fixed himself up with something classy but reminiscent of his costume, dark blue suit, white shirt, and yellow tie. He also indulged in a life long fascination, a trench coat. His mother had never let him own one before, telling him, "The age of dapper men in trench-coats is gone, now only drug-dealers, perverts, and pedophile's wear them." But his mother was now literally a universe away so he'd take the chance while he had it. He pointed his new shiny black shoes back towards the hotel and felt his heart sink a bit.

All this effort to get dressed up to do what? Wait while the EU decided something, or till Mordtoten finished their way home. He couldn't face that, to sit around like a bunch of idiots while this world burned around him and god knows what happened back in his. So maybe Tommy couldn't stop this war, but he could do something, he turned towards his nearest team-mate who happened to be Brian and asked, "Hey you wanna go fight some crime? Maybe hit bar afterwards?"

Brian's head was still somewhat reeling from all the moving around it was still doing. Teleporting was starting to take it's toll on the Canadian, with his body unsure what the hell to do to fix the problem. While other people went shopping in the legendary Paris districts, Brian got better acquainted with a park bench in front of a shop. It helped his stomach a bit, but the head took much longer. He had gotten it to the point where he could probably stand up when Tommy came out looking to do something.

"Uh....yeah. Yeah could probably um....hold on." Brian shook his head again to try and get the weird feeling out of there. It kind of helped but it was still there. "Yeah, I can come with see what's up and stuff."

"Alright, let's head downtown at this time of night there are probably plenty of muggers looking to jump a drunk." Tommy guessed. Fact is he knew almost nothing about Paris but he assumed crime worked the same in just about any city. So as he Brian set off in that direction he hollered back, "You're all free to join if you'd like."

After about a minute of walking Tommy noticed Brian was walking oddly. He seemed to have trouble keeping a straight line for more than a few seconds and was constantly pressing around his temples as if to find the button to reset his brain. "Porting sickness? Ya you guys really need to learn how handle you're jumps, I didn't want to say anything earlier but it's getting kind of embarrassing."

"Well sorry I'm not used to all this here, buddy," Brian said, now leaning against a light pole. "Not used to any of this. Universes and teleporting and body swapping and you know it's all a bit much for a guy to take in a couple months. Or however long its been. I don't even know anymore there, you know? It's all like a blur."

He pushed himself off the light pole trying to steady himself, and it seemed to be working...for the moment. "I dunno man. Maybe I'm just not cut out for this stuff. Just a guy who can heal himself up quick."

"Ya here's the thing, none of us are cut out for this. I mean I thought I was. On account of the whole bench pressing tanks and bullets being a minor annoyance. Ya I got that notion beaten out of my head by an asphalt floor when some a-hole was using gravity to make a yo-yo out of me," Tommy told him, "So far? For me it just seems like we find our selves in ludicrously dangerous situations, survive them, and somehow in the process the day gets saved, I dunno it's kinda of an after thought sometime."

Tommy noticed Brian kept lapsing back into disorientation, he gave some advice, " Want a tip? Stop thinking about the hotel and the jump. Focus on where you are, the air your breathing, the people around you. Push Roman, Renee, the hotel and everyone we left there out. What's happening is that when you teleport you move so fast you don't totally realize you're somewhere else. Part of you still thinks your back there, it's expecting to see the same people, feel the same temperature, hear the same things, you need to steady yourself and make the part realize what's going on right now."

"OK," Brian said, trying to steady himself once more. He closed his eyes and focused solely on what his body was doing: breathing, digesting, that sort of thing. He kept this position for about thirty seconds and it seemed to be working. He didn't feel like grabbing another pole to keep himself upright, and the thought of throwing up the contents of the hotel mini bar didn't seem as dangerous or as pressing an issue. He was just thinking about his motions.

"All right, I think I'm good. I'm here, and that's what's going on there. All right, let's get cracking on some stuff, eh? So...uh...where are we going to find crime or anything, anyway?"

Tommy didn't respond, in fact he didn't seem to taking anything in at all. From the outside he seemed to be on a sort of auto-pilot, his breath, smooth and regular; his gait, even and straight; his eyes, calm and distant. Inside Tommy was moving deeper into a state of near meditation, calling on the training his father had given him. This was a technique passed down by his ancestor who in turn learned from the mystics of the east. It was use to block things out, often Tommy used it to survive damage that should have killed him from the traumatic pain alone, but now he bent it to a different purpose. With practiced ease he began to parse apart the city soundscape, the rustle of feet, the dulcet tones of parisians, and the rumbling car engines. Blocking them all until there was only the sound no one else wanted to hear. He bumped into a man, almost knocking him over, the man turned to yell at Tommy but Tommy didn't notice or care. It was only him, the unnaturally quit city, and a faint panicked scream.

Tommy snapped back to reality, grabbing Brian's shoulder. "This way!" He yelled, pointing to a side street which he started running down. A part of him kept track of the screams as they got louder and louder, telling him they were getting closer. Another turn took him to a dark and seldom seen street, there two men accosted a women. Both armed with handguns, one was trying to pry a purse from the woman who desperately fought to hold onto it while the second considered ending it right there with the gun.

"Get the muggers, I'll shield the woman!" Tommy yelled as he jumped into the air. Crashing down in from of woman, causing her let the bag go in fright while the second mugger fired a bullet into Tommy's head.

"What the...." Brian muttered as he followed Tommy in a dead sprint in the Paris streets. He kept up at first, but hockey players were built for sprint sessions, not endurance runs. When he saw Tommy duck into a dark alley, he figured that he had a sort of clandestine club that he frequented in the city, but instead he saw a scene straight out of any superhero origin story, and once he had come upon a couple times before back in Nova. Just his luck, Tommy decided to insert himself right into the middle of it, without thinking of a plan of attack or anything.

"Get the muggers, I'll shield the woman!"

"Well jeez thanks, just let them know I'm here, buddy." Having seemingly dispatched the first intruder, the criminals' attention turned to the Canadian. Looking in the alleyway, there wasn't much that made for makeshift weapon material. A discarded metal chair seemed to be the best option, but it was no hockey stick. Without another option, Brian picked up the chair, and got ready to try and defend himself. This went as well as bringing a chair to a gun fight could be expected to go. Brian charged, hoping that he could deflect enough bullets to reach them in time to do anything. The searing pain in his lower leg told him was unsuccessful in totally avoiding it, but he got close enough to swing the chair violently at the attackers. He managed to catch one of them in the face on his way to collapsing from the shot he took, and the mugger went down with him, dropping his gun in shock. Upon hearing two metal objects clatter off the cobblestone, Brian reached for the other one, the one that dealt a bit more damage and was able to quickly fire off a round that caught the other crook just above the kneecap. He fell to the ground, clutching at his leg.

Brian tried to get up, hoping that his healing abilities would have patched him up quickly, but the pain still remained. It wasn't the slow burn pain he was used to while healing up, the sudden appearance caught him off guard, and it stung like an Asian hornet. The exit wound was also still open, as blood trickled down the back of his jeans. "Damn that hurts! Ah!" A groan that exited of the first mugger's mouth indicated that he might want his gun back, but Brian was in no mood after enduring his first non-alcoholic shot. Still, he gave him a couple bullets back. One in the shoulder and one in the leg. "Fucker, what you doing shooting stupidly like that? You know someone's gonna see that! Dumb gits. God, this still hurts like a mother..." The second mugger tried to move against the man now in control, but he made too much noise and earned a shoulder wound to match his partner. Brian limped over to where he had fallen and grabbed the other gun as it laid in the alleyway. "No, no. You ain't getting these back, byes."

With the shooters incapacitated for the moment, Brian looked for where his teammate and the victim would be, spotting them fifteen feet away. "You all right over there, man, or you need patching up?"

Tommy checked himself, the bullet had gotten lodged in his fore-head and a second had passed through his jacket and into his abdomen, leaving a large dark patch blooming on his under shirt. With his thumb and index finger he pinched the bullet and pulled it out, freeing a rivulet of blood to run down his face. "Nah, I should be fine, this suit's a goner though. Pity. Well maybe Renee will let get another." He replied to Brian before turning to the victim, "Madame! Vos sac a main Madame!"

She seemed frozen for a second, as she took a good look at Tommy and Brian. The muggers where on thing but these two where inhuman. First there was the monstrous giant who flew through the air and took a shot in the head without dying. And the other, if the mere fact that she could see his wounded leg already repairing itself wasn't enough, the moment she was his face there was a flash of recognition followed by a mask of fear. She didn't approach, she turned tail and ran, leaving Tommy and Brian with the purse.

"Madame! Madame! Come back!" Tommy yelled again to no avail, "See what I mean? Fucking french, you save them from muggers and they don't even have the decency to say thanks. Well might as well do the right thing, let's shee if we can find her drivers's licence in here." Tommy began opened the bag and began rooting around, it was filled with documents. He found her wallet and began flipping through it. " Oh, actually she's not French she's Canadian, believe that Brian?" Flipping further he found another licence this one French, "Oh, wait no she's also French," Then another, " And Japanese? She didn't look like it but you know you it really speaks to the interconnections of the world now a days." and another, " French Guyana? That's a real place?"

"She couldn't be a Canadian, man," Brian corrected Tommy. "We wouldn't be running off like that if someone does something heroic. We'd at least by them a coffee or a donut. Maybe even a grilled cheese, depends on if Tim's got the special on." He looked through the IDs with him. "That's weird though, why's she got so many ID. I don't think these are even the same name, you know? I dunno man, think we might have just walked into something here. I say we take the bag and you know, get it somewhere where it can be retrieved. Maybe even get some beer money for a reward out of it."

"Good point, but remember technically they're American's in this universe. I'm gonna call Renee and see if she knows where we can get a reward for this, then drinks." Tommy started walking to the nearest pay phone when he notices the two muggers were still on the floor. "Right this first." He grabbed the metal chair and pulled off two of the legs, which he bent around the men's wrists to make a pair of manacles. He then pointed to the one who was bleeding out on the street, " Uh Brian, while I'm calling maybe you should do something about that?"

He got to the pay phone, pulled out a few coins from the purse which he promised to replace once they got their reward money. He dialed the number for the hotel and after a few rings he was on the line with the receptionist, "Yes Renee Arreos please? Or Renee Claidt, whatever she goes by."

Brian shook his head. "I'm sorry, bye. Fucker shot me, he can bleed right out, all I care."

"Please man? You already shot him twice for that and this is my first night in Paris, I'd really rather not have to worry about a manslaughter charge," Tommy told him. "Besides doesn't the whole healing hurt? So think about it it's like shooting him four time!" Tommy did have a point. It would be a chance to get them back even more.

"Fine," Brian said moving over to where the first one had fallen. "But I'm leaving the bullets in. Leave him with a reminder of him being stupid."

"Oh and check their pockets for beer money!" Tommy added.

Brian smiled, "All right, literal payback. Like it." He frisked the man's pants finding a wad of bills tucked into the pocket. Content he laid his hands on him, slowing the hemorrhaging until the blood began to dry. While the eyes remained closed, the gritting teeth told him that it was working. The process was repeated on the second crook, with another wad of cash being produced.

"K, think we're good here Tommy. Not a bad haul. These guys are a little rich to be jacking some lady's purse in an alley, eh?"

(Earlier...)

"I'm here for you....Nothing's going to hurt you again, not on my watch."

Hurt me again? Taryn brought her arm up and stared at it in sudden comprehension. She was whole. But that wasn't possible! Were were the burns? Where were the scars? She'd been hurt. Seriously hurt...she'd felt her own skin burning.

"...did you know the normal human body can only take so many volts of electricity before the neurons in their brain start to malfunction..."

Oh, God. Was this some sort of sick game? Was she still strapped to that, that machine? Or worse? Am I...

The room started to blur around the edges. Taryn threw herself backwards. Her head struck something solid and pain briefly overtook her panic.

Ow. But pain! Real, actual pain. Surely it wasn't manufactured pain. Taryn reached back with both hands to carefully feel along the concrete wall she'd hit. The surface was cool but not cold. She focused on that mundane detail. She looked around the room, which slowly cleared, and took note of every little thing that she couldn't possibly have fabricated in her own mind. She wasn't even sure what some of the machines were called, much less what the numbers meant on them. That had to mean something. This had to be real.

The survey of the room helped calm her racing heartbeat. "I need-" Taryn swallowed heavily. "um."

She needed answers. And to get out of this place. And answers. And to get out of this stupid hospital gown that made her so vulnerable. Vulnerable and weak without her electricity. Her powers, what had happened to them? Were they gone? Permanently? Panic started to rise again.

"Clothes! Can I get my clothes now? I'm too-" Taryn made a quick frustrated gesture at herself. There was a terrible stillness where there was supposed to be a shield. "-I need more than this." One thing at a time. She could handle that. No falling apart, not yet. Clothes first.

And then maybe she could figure out that horrible droning noise in her head.

"Sorry to interrupt-"

****

Before Taryn's request could be fulfilled the nurse entered the room, with an apology and muffled curse words. What mattered more to Taryn was the phrase 'released' and 'free to go'. The nurse disappeared again and returned with a wrapped bundle and two uniformed men who stationed themselves outside of the door.

The guards, the nurse explained, were sent to escort both Taryn and Levi to the designated transport vehicle so that they could meet up with the rest of the Society members. The bundle was clothes, which she tossed to Taryn who dumped the items on a nearby gurney. A flash of red and black caught her attention, distracting her from some speech the nurse was trying to make.

Her jacket was a mess of burned nylon, charred fabric, and melted plastic. The sleeves were completely gone, the front riddled with holes. Barely recognizable even though she'd spent hours carefully designing every inch. Taryn traced the edge of a particularly large hole, about where her stomach would be, and frowned. Here was her evidence, the damage that was missing from her own skin.

The air suddenly smelled of burning flesh. With a grimace Taryn shoved the jacket aside and grabbed the next item blindly. It was a simple dark grey shirt with an unfamiliar logo emblazoned across the front. It looked about her size and would do. Her pants were, for some reason, pristine and flawless after a brisk shake. She remembered why after a few seconds. Thanks, Tommy. .

Taryn closed the curtain around the bed and quickly changed into her new clothes. The last thing she did was lace the military-looking boots with a logo that matched the shirt. Missing from the bundle were a lot of her electronic devices, though Taryn knew that the small bit of circuitry that fell from her jacket pocket once belonged to her phone. She was kind of okay with missing them for now.

The nurse was already gone when Taryn stepped through the curtain. Good. But Levi and the guards were still there. Taryn folded her jacket as many times as she could, until it was just a small square. When she was finished she walked quickly towards the group. When she was closer she spotted her laptop in one of the guard's hands. He was holding it loosely, if even one finger slipped the whole machine would crash to the ground. And she didn't care. She just wanted to leave.

Levi waited outside while Taryn changed. When she emerged with fresh clothes, the two guards motioned for them to follow. As they walked down the halls, Levi kept a respectable distance from Taryn, but watched her carefully. His better half seemed preoccupied, distracted. But given what she'd been through, he couldn't blame her.

The two of them were escorted to a nondescript vehicle, with Serdar at the helm. Levi also recognized Catherine and Brian's alternate who were apparently along for the ride. He wordlessly entered the vehicle with Taryn and quickly nodded off as the ride started.


A few hours later, he was woken by the sudden lack of rumbling engine and the sound of opening doors. After blinking a few times to clear his vision, Levi climbed out of the car with Taryn in tow and followed the escorts into the hotel building.

They were shown to their rooms in a brief tour. Levi was pleasantly surprised to see the accommodations. A spacious room with a bed big enough for two, an entertainment center complete with television and small couch, a full restroom, and even a walk-in closet. It was by far the most hospitable thing he'd seen since arriving in this hellhole of a universe.

Taryn moved quietly over to the bed, while Levi decided to crash on the couch; he figured Taryn still needed some space. If she needed him, he had a feeling he would know.

Renee had been pleased to get another update from Doctor Mordtoten stating that he was on time and would be getting to the hotel in only a short while. This was followed by unpleasing news when her father had to leave to go and deal with a problem back on the home front. At least the rest of their group managed to get 'ere safely, along with some guests even, she thought, not amused with the two others that Serdar had brought with him.

They should 'ave told me as soon as I saw them instead of waiting to tell me about their problems. Before Renee could come up with any decent payback for the annoyance, her home phone started to ring. Walking over to it with some trouble, she picked it up and was told by the receptionist of the hotel if she would be willing to take an anonymous call from someone wanting to talk to her.

Briefly weighing the odds of both the potential danger and of who it could be, Renee accepted the call and waited until she could hear someone on the other line. "'Ello? Which Society member is it that decided to contact me without even giving their own name? You are lucky I took the call."

"Oh right, sorry, little distracted because someone wouldn't stop screaming. But ya this is Tommy, I just had a few questions, wondering if you had a sec?"

"There is not much else for me to do right now. So yes, I do 'ave time," Renee responded curiously, taking a seat by the phone in case this call took longer than a few minutes.

"Sweet, thanks, so ya first off we got this woman's purse, me and Brian were wondering if we could drop if off somewhere for a reward? I mean looks like it's full of important stuff, like all eight of her drivers liscence's and a bunch of documents with some real offcial looking seals. Also I need a new suit, this ones covered in blood. Oh don't worry! It's just mine."

Renee put the phone away from her ear for a moment as she stared at the wall with a confused look, wondering just how daft someone could be if they were allowed to fight criminals for the government. The standards are not quite as 'igh as I would 'ave expected.

"Well, normally people do not 'ave quite so many licenses on them at once, nor do they carry a bunch of documents with 'official looking' seals on them in their purses. You probably managed to find someone who might not be...on our side. Do you understand what I'm saying?"

"Oh I get it..." Tommy move the phone a few centimeter away from mouth to shout to Brian, " Hey Brian did that chick look like a Lesbian to you?" Before moving it closer to his mouth again, " Ya I guess you never really can tell, some people just don't wear their sexuality on their sleeves."

"No you fool!" Renee shouted, wondering just how it was possible for the apple to fall half a continent away from the tree, "There is a good chance that whoever it was that you got the purse from, might be a terrorist from either United America or the Asiatic Alliance. I would place my bet on the former though, especially since they are 'ere in Paris. Did you get a good look at the woman? If so, what did she look like? I can have someone look for 'er, and you can bring the documents straight to me."

"Uh I dunno, black hair, sorta mousy face, actually I there is a bunch of picture on her on the ID's let me check." Tommy rifled through the purse to grab the woman's french ID, "Ya black hair, blue eyes, sorta thin faced, seems to have a faint scar near her right eye-brow, and uh, looks like an overbite? When she left she had an ash grey pea-coat with black jeans, and a blue hat." Tommy described as he recalled her appearance from memory, then adding, " So ya, we'll be by the hotel shortly. Oh and Renee? I don't know what they teach you in France, but in States we're taught that name calling is just plain rude." Before hanging up.

"I've had just about enough of these attitudes," Renee muttered unamused.


Doctor Herkimer Amon Mordtoten stepped out into the crisp air of the Parisian evening, adjusting the collar of his coat as he walked inside of the hotel. He was greeted by the assistants behind the desk as he removed his hat and made his way to the elevator, thanking the man who called the elevator down for him. As Mordtoten waited on the elevator, he took off his coat and held it in his free arm. The other arm held a leather briefcase with his initials on it.

When the elevator doors opened he took a step inside and pushed the button for the top floor, leaning back against the wall and looking around the spacious elevator at nothing in particular. He was in a chipper mood after his conference, with all of his ideas and theories being supported by the scientific community at large. Perhaps I can finally go back to doing what I want and actually developing the technology for the future within the next few years. Hopefully.

It had certainly been a strain when United America had first approached him to help their cause back in the day. That was back when Buchanan had just taken office, Mordtoten mused to himself as he listened to the simple music playing. He had helped out, in no small part due to threats that had been made on his colleagues and his family. That escape was probably the most daring and brave thing I have ever done. Mordtoten remembered just how terrifying it had been to keep everything quiet amongst his peers and higher-ups, not telling anyone of his plan to safely leave the country until he was already gone.

Came here to open arms and safety for myself and my family. Even then I knew it was too good to be true. Everyone wants something out of you. At least this time I'm not being threatened. While Mordtoten was allowed to partake in his research and indulge in his scientific endeavors the first few years, he had been called more and more into helping out in the weapons development department.

And now all I do is build things either meant to kill people, or things meant to make people better at killing things. It had been rough in the beginning, but now he was going to be able to work on his own projects. Soon, he thought as the elevator doors opened and he stepped out.

The lobbyists upstairs also greeted him as he walked down the hallway to Renee's, noting that the rooms now seemed to be occupied. Knocking on her door brought him face-to-face with Renee's friend Serdar, who stood aside to let Mordtoten in.

"Quite a bit more company than I expected if all of those rooms down the hall are full," Mordtoten stated, putting his coat and hat up.

"There is a good number of people who need your 'elp," Renee responded from her kitchen table, beckoning him to sit down, "Serdar, can you knock on all the doors and tell them to 'ead on over?"

Mordtoten took a seat as Serdar left with a curt nod of understanding, unbuttoning his suit jacket to get more comfortable. "My conference went very well before you ask. I am hoping that the EU will not renewing my contract again so that I can work on my own interests."

"I cannot guarantee anything at this point in time. I do know that the scales might just be tipped more in our favor due to recent events," Renee replied with a knowing smirk that meant she was either planning something or was anxious to tell someone of her plans. "You will learn more about that shortly. First, there are a couple of things that you should know about the guests you will be talking to..."

Dustin's pager buzzed to inform him of Mordtoten's arrival. Among the antiques that stocked Dustin's office, which included a type-writer, fountain pens, and a rotary phone; the pager was most likely the most technologically advanced thing there. Even if he did understand things like smart-phones and computers completely he would still hate to use one. Dustin simply abhorred the concept of a constantly connected life, it made the vast world seem to crowded and vile when he had to deal with hundreds of anonymous commentators and distant acquaintances. Dustin stashed the report he'd been reading in his desk drawer and got up. I suppose I should see how Mordtoten is doing and what he has to say. He paused before leaving his office when he realized this foray into the outside would most likely bring him in contact with their guests. After briefly considering this, he went back to top off his hip flask, and then headed out the door, ducking so he wouldn't smack his head into the frame. As he walked his passed by Serder, acknowledging him with the nod, before heading to Renee's suite.

"Renee good to see little miss," He greeted with a curt bow, " I would have come sooner but there was a back-log or reports to go through since that flight came in from America, interesting stuff, been cooped up all day trying to glean what I could from it."

"Herkimer, good to see you in Paris, it's been too long." Dustin said while he extended his right hand to Mordtoten.

Hers was the most beautiful smile Levi had ever seen. He loved the way her brown eyes would light up and how her expression would soften, ever so slightly. It was a smile that was understated, but warm and sincere; a smile that never failed to brighten even the darkest of times. He missed it right now more than anything. This universe took that smile from her. It took damn near everything from her.

Levi's reflection scowled back at him. It just wasn't fair. Nobody deserved that, especially not Taryn. He looked away from the bathroom mirror and towards the bed. She was still asleep. At the very least she was able to get some rest, however troubled. Maybe soon she would come out of her traumatized shell. Maybe soon he could actually help her.

A polite knock on the door took Levi from his thoughts. It was Serdar. The man informed him that someone of interest to them had arrived and that he should come down to the kitchen area urgently. With that, he left to relay the same message to the other Society members. Levi sighed quietly and returned to the bathroom. He splashed some cold water on his face and donned a plain black shirt given to him by the hotel staff.

It was about time things got underway. The sooner they were back home, the better. Levi was tired of running from place to place with no explanation. He laced up his boots and headed out, taking one last glance at Taryn before closing the door behind him. It was better if she had her rest. He could fill her in on the details later.

Levi made his way down the hallway, to the door that lead to the kitchen. He opened the door and stepped inside. Seated at a nearby table was Renee, another man he didn't recognize...and a far more familiar face.

Mordtoten.

A sudden spike in Levi's chest left him breathless. He was still struggling with the implication that the mad professor he knew back home could very well be his missing father. It was about the last thing he wanted to think about right now, and here it was, staring him in the face. Dumbfounded and at a loss for words, Levi said nothing.

Once they got to the hotel, Brian was set to spend some of the dollars that Tommy and himself had earned for their intervention in the alleyway, but a message from le head honcho meant no drinking for the moment. A disappointment, but if the meeting meant they could get back to the world where Canada was still a thing, he would go for it.

Upon entering he recognized Renee, but the face he was far more worried about was the "scientist" at the table. The last time he had seen that man, he ended up getting to know Alex a little too well. "Great, how's this gonna end?" he mumbled quietly to himself. "Me turned into a beaver?" He went to grab an open seat, far away from Mordtoten.


Back in the room he had gotten with Catherine, Briān was slow to make his way out towards the meeting. He was a bit miffed that he was forced to go to this after finally arriving back in a land where they spoke his preferred language. It was tempting to just blow it off, but he stayed. He stayed for the woman who was sharing the room (but not the bed) with him.

"So," he asked, "Are you ready to get zis charade over wit?"

"It is fine Dustin. You 'ave a time consuming job; I know you would come over as soon as you made enough 'eadway in it," Renee replied to Dustin after he came in, walking over to her kitchen to grab a drink. Mordtoten shook Dustin's hand, replying, "Would have been even longer if I wasn't called in by Renee here. Takes a long time to do anything in my line of work, you understand that yourself. It is only people who don't know the pains of work that don't."

"As your 'ost, I must remind you to please not speak ill of me while I am still within 'earing range," Renee told Herkimer, handing him a glass of scotch before sitting back down at the table.

"I'll be sure to make sure you leave the room the next time," Mordtoten answered as he heard the door open behind him, turning around and almost dropping his glass when he saw Levi.

There was silence as Mordtoten seemed to be at a loss for words until Renee chimed in. "Believe me now, Herkimer?" The scientist was shook out of silence with the question, muttering 'Jesus Christ' before downing his drink. "I'm going to need another," he said as he waited for her to pour him another drink.

"I believe you now. This...that would explain the first charge that happened a few days ago...but for something like that to be made...I suppose if it was myself than it would be possible but...oh my god," Mordtoten babbled as he started to process the story he had been told and what that could mean.

"Give 'im a moment," Renee told Levi, offering him a place to sit and a drink as more people started to show up.

Dustin nodded to Mordtoten and replied, " I understand the pains of research quite well, when I was you age I too was quite the scholar and researcher," The young faced man said with pride, "Though you wouldn't be familiar with any of my contributions, they weren't in a scientific field so to speak."

With Levi's arrival and Mordtoten subsequently entering a state of shock, Dustin took it upon himself to be the civil. He stood up and tried his hardest not to completely tower over the poor boy but it was in vain. "Greetings, I am Dustin Stitch, this is Herkimer Mordtoten, who is no doubt reeling from the scientific implications of your existence, something about strings I think. And Renee Claidt, who I'm sure you have already met." Dustin was about move to shake his hand when in walked Brian, and Tommy.

Dustin was prepared for this moment, or at least he thought he was. But at that moment he looked like he had seen a ghost, no that wasn't true, Dustin saw ghosts every day and they didn't bother him in the least; this truly scared the shit out him. Then Tommy started moving towards him. Dustin didn't know if it was his own fear or the man's massive size but this moment was starting to feel like a train wreck. So he stood there, hand half extended towards Levi, eyes wide as dinner plates, teeth clenched to hold back a banshee like wail; until Tommy reached him and wrapped him in a hug. Then came the deathblow "Da!" the man yelled.

JESUS-VISHNU-ZEUS-ISIS-GOD-TAKEMIKAZUCHI-KALI-ODIN-DAMARA-ISHTAR-ECHIDNA-THOR-HADES-ST.PETE-AERON-NEIT-HEPHAESTUS-MARDUK-TIAMAT-VIRGINMARY-AND THE QUEEN... Oh thank gods I'm taller than him.

The simple fact that he was almost always, with few exceptions, the tallest person in the room had brought Dustin immense solace over the years, he would need that more than ever at this moment. Without really moving his head and barely moving his lips Dustin spoke, " I believe you are mistaken sir, I have no children, but it is nice to make your acquaintance, would you please sit down and join us for a drink."

"Oh ya, sorry, uh sure." And with felt like great mercy Tommy let go of Dustin and joined Brian at the end of the table. "Before I forget, here's the bag." Tommy dropped the purse he'd been holding on the table and slid it towards Renee. Dustin regain his composure and with the grace of an English gentlemen took his seat next to Mordtoten, briefly sharing a deeply sympathetic gaze with the scientist. No matter how uncomfortable this situation was for him he would no longer show it, he would keep a stiff upper lip and Marshall on, the English way. But just in case he looked to Renee and with pleading puppy dog eyes silently asked for the mercy of a scotch.

There came a rapping from Jason's door, breaking him from his usual stance of meditation. He wasn't getting any luck with sleep, so this seemed to be the next best thing. Still only donning a single bath towel, he lazily strode towards the entrance, opening wide to a man dressed in formal wear and holding not-as-formal-but-still-kinda-sorta military attire. Shirt, pants, boots, undergarments. "I assume those are for me?" Jason queried.

Serdar nodded, emptying his hands of the articles of clothing. "Awwwww, you shouldn't have! You guys really know how to make a girl feel special." Through the boy's smarmy remark, Serdar addressed the situation. "Renee's gathering up the Society members; we're preparing for our next course of action." He stated plainly as the Keyholder dressed himself. Purposely disregarding the underwear and footwear, Jason tossed the towel to the nearest bed, rolling up his shirt sleeves as the official questioned him further. "You don't wear...?" Jason obliged him. "Usually I would. Seems like they'd just get in the way here." Serdar shrugged, continuing on to the next room as Jason stepped out. He made an embark in the opposite direction, assuming it was the way Serdar started. "Don't tell me where we're supposed to meet up at or anything, nope. Yeah. I'll just find it on my own. Yeeee-up." He thought quite coldly, with a "psssh." for added measure.

Well, he did find the meeting area in due time, if only due to the sounds of shock and surprise coming from a room beyond the hotel's kitchen. With the door still opened, Jason quietly moseyed on in, eyelids low and lips pursed. Deciding against greeting anyone (they all seemed involved in their own pursuits anyway), He found a seat closest to Tommy and took it, resting his elbows upon the long table they sat at. He could've made a verbal note about the guy that greatly resembled everyone's favorite mad scientist, or that Levi was back among the living (despite this waifu still seeming to be missing in action), but instead let out a puff of breath in the form of a barely audible sigh.

"Give 'im a moment"

It seemed that Mordtoten shared Levi's disbelief. He sat down, shifting uncomfortably in his seat while Mordtoten downed what was left of his drink. The man next to the distraught scientist spoke up.

"Greetings, I am Dustin Stitch, this is Herkimer Mordtoten, who is no doubt reeling from the scientific implications of your existence...

"It's...a little more complicated than the science, I'm afraid," Levi replied. "Levi Harland, by the way."

Dustin started to reach for a handshake, but Tommy's incredibly enthusiastic entrance cut that gesture short. In true Tommy fashion, the man stormed in and gave the now-terrified Dustin a powerful hug. Shortly afterwards, Jason entered. Levi gave the Keyholder a polite nod as he sat down next to Tommy. It was nice to see his teammates again, especially after what he'd been through recently.

He returned his attention to Mordtoten. There was an elephant in the room only the two of them could see. The sooner it was addressed, the sooner they could move on. Levi cleared his throat.

"Mordtoten..."

Levi paused uncertainly. Did he even go by his surname in this universe? What did he prefer to be addressed as?

"I know that my being here is a bit of a shock. I'm still dealing with the implications this has for my own life as well and..."

Levi's expression softened with sympathy.

"...I know it isn't fair to you. I wouldn't be surprised if my very existence made you angry. All I can say is...I'm sorry. I'm so, so sorry. I wasn't the one who started this nightmare, but I feel so terrible about what's happened in this universe. And what's happened to "me". And what's probably happened to you..."

His words began to drift away. Levi wasn't sure if there was anything left to say, but he hoped his intent was conveyed. As heart-wrenching as this meeting was, it couldn't hamper their efforts to return home.

"Thank you for the 'elp Thomas. This will get taken care of," Renee told Tommy as she looked through the various paperwork inside of the purse, pouring Dustin a drink before handing the items to Serdar. "I'll tell my brother to come over, and you can 'and these off to 'im. 'E'll know what to do, and will 'opefully find this person before they go back under the radar," she said, watching Serdar nod and head out before typing out a few messages on her phone, "If any of you want something to drink, you are more than welcome to a glass or two."

Mordtoten nodded at Levi's heartfelt words, taking a moment to collect his thoughts before speaking up. "It is quite a shock. I suppose it is to be expected...not all universes would have the same things happening in their timelines...there would always be some discrepancies. I am not angry, just shocked. Perhaps a bit torn. Maybe even some annoyance thrown in there as well. It wouldn't be your fault for what happened to your counterpart here Ba- Levi. It was his own choice," Mordtoten said in a calm manner, clearly uncomfortable with the situation at hand. It had been a hardship what had happened so many years ago, and Mordtoten had put much of the blame for it on his own inept parenting. "I appreciate the apology though. I'm sure when I tell Cecilia about this she would be grateful as well."

" Happy to help, and don't mind if I do." Tommy replied as grabbed a pair of glasses and poured two drinks. He slid a glass to Brian, and as he started sipping his he sized up Dustin. He looked just like his father but younger, there where no grew hairs around his temples, fewer wrinkles, his face was thinner, and his eyes less tired. It wasn't simply that this man looked more youthful it was also a darker air about him. His father was a necromancer, he had never been the most saccharine figure by any stretch of the imagination, but he had always had a glint of warmth in his eyes. This man had none of that, instead there was a certain lethal quality in them. He wasn't just looking at people he was looking into them. When he met Tommy's gaze, Tommy could not help but think of his own mortality.


Dustin thanked Renee for the glass and started with a hearty gulp of whisky. The burning in his through was a lovely distraction from his present company. He didn't even bother to chastise himself for the obvious mistake he made introducing Mordtoten. Instead he simply took another sip and did a thought exercise to calm himself, he thought of new ways to kill people. He started to look around the room and his eyes laid upon Mordtoten, Draw him away from his lab with a false contact pretending to be an old friend who had defected, then send a sniper to meet him. Levi. Same plan as Victor. Jason. Feed information of whereabouts to UA, their Keys will do the rest. Renee. Try to kill Roman. Weep at massive casualties sustained in your failed attempt to kill Roman. The last and only time he had seriously made one of Roman's children a subject of his thought experiments had lead to very tense conversation on top of Mt. Everest. Brian. Stun with a concuss blast, then remove and dispose of the head. Tommy. His train of thought came to an abrupt end when they matched gazed, he had been watching him the entire time. Dustin broke eye contact and looked back at Mordtoten. Damn that boy, just looking at him gives me the chills, and what in the bloody hell is with his eye? In an effort to make his sudden change of gaze seem less forced, he asked Mordtoten, " So Mordtoten, just how confident are you that you can return our guests to their home?"

"I appreciate the apology though. I'm sure when I tell Cecilia about this she would be grateful as well."

Although the name didn't ring any bells, Levi instantly knew who Mordtoten was referring to. He felt a tight ball of emotion punch him in the gut. He wasn't quite sure what the emotion was just yet, but it took a moment to suppress tears.

"That means a lot to me," he said finally. "More than you know."

There was so much he wanted to ask. Who exactly was Cecilia? What did she do in life? Where did they meet? Where was she now, and was she safe? The questions whirled around in his mind and as much as he wanted to ask them, no words formed. An uncomfortable silence formed as English completely failed him.

"So Mordtoten, just how confident are you that you can return our guests to their home?"

Dustin's own question sobered Levi enough to realize there was no time for this. He wanted to know more about his long-lost parents, but returning home took priority.

Levi cleared his throat. "I'm wondering the same thing actually. Mordtoten, how do you plan on helping us anyway?"

"So Mordtoten, just how confident are you that you can return our guests to their home?"

"Well," Mordtoten started, taking a few moments to gather his thoughts on the subject that he knew everyone was so interested in, "I know I can. It all comes down to exactly how much time it would take though. You see, parallel dimensions and all that were things that I was always very interested in...however, I have not worked on any of that in a very, very long time."

"I first started to work on the theories and basic groundwork for dimensional travel back when I was working for United America all those years ago. Patriot was interested on the subject, but he was less interested when he was told exactly how long it would take for anything fruitful to come to it. After that, everything was shelved on the subject for ventures more in line of weapons and such. That was the end of that until after I had safely escaped from United America and made it here. Once here, I went back to all of the notes I had and began working again on projects."

"Of course, nothing really came from it other than simple prototypes that would not be able to send any of you back. They were smaller, and more for just exploring. A number of years after I began taking the European Union's military contracts, and that was pretty much the end of the universal projects except for some random ideas that I'd have every once in a while. So the question on how long it would take to make you a device that can send you back is a tricky one. I would have to reread all the notes that I've made in the past on the subject, see what I can salvage from the older works, and make a device that I've never fully made before and try to calculate it to be able to send all of you safely to the exact universe you are originally from. Along with fulfilling all of the contracts I also have going on right now," explained Mordtoten as he tried to explain the situation that they were putting him in as best he could.

"So, a few weeks then?" Garrus asked after stepping forward, having waited to make his presence known until after the scientist was done speaking.

"I wish. If there were ways around a few of those then it could take less time, but as of now...maybe six months at best. And even then, there is the chance of that things do not turn out as well for your group," Mordtoten said, looking at Garrus hoping for him to give him some good news.

"Uh...well, I know we have some really smart people in the Society that could probably help. Levi and Taryn know their stuff, and Ethan knows electronics pretty decent. I know that the Mordtoten from our universe made cameras to check out the various places first, and that when we were sent through we went through a bunch of other universes or dimensions before we landed here," Garrus told the group, hoping that that could help in anyway.

Mordtoten sighed and nodded, giving Renee a look of uncertainty on the situation. She nodded and said, "We can 'ave some of the less important contract work loaded off your back for you to focus a bit more on 'elping them back 'ome. Some of it we can postpone even, perhaps only 'ave you supervise."

"That does take a bit of stress off my back. I wouldn't say no to any of the help that your group can give as well. I know that you can pay off some debt by just helping me out," Mordtoten told Garrus, who showed some slight annoyance that everyone seemed to keep reminding them about the debt they owed. "I have a research lab in Dunkirk that has the all of my previous work regarding this subject. It isn't in use currently, but it should not take longer than a few days to get it back up and running."


None of them are any of my friends, Leland thought solemnly, disappointed that his search for the Society seemed to never end. He did not want to stay in this place any longer than need be, especially after being attacked and chased numerous times while following the trail of the Society's goings. The road to get to them had certainly been dangerous, though Leland had been lucky each and every time so far.

Magic barely works here. Everyone is trying to kill me. They can track me down whenever I use magic. This place sucks, he thought as he looked over the edge of the cliffs that branched out of the last place the Society had been before crossing the ocean. They just had to make it difficult to follow them. My map doesn't even show me where they landed yet; I hope my magic picks up once I'm further away from this place.

Down below he got a slight jolt of voices rushing to his head. For the most part it was the normal chitter-chatter he was used to, but it seemed now that they had noticed his presence. "I'm not even a bad guy," he muttered bitterly, having read more than enough in the random newspapers he had found to know that he was definitely on the side of good in this particular instance. As he heard of a patrol group being sent out to look for him, he made a beeline parallel the cliff. He ran until he reached a beach that allowed him access to the water. "Time to go. Let's see if I can do this," Leland told himself, taking a step onto the water. When he didn't fall through he gave a sigh of relief, taking a few more steps before he started to run across the water with the map in one hand and his pendulum pointing out the direction to go in the other.

The science stuff was all going over Brian's head, but the main thing he had been waiting to learn was loud and clear, and it was not what he wanted to hear.

"Six months? Come on there now, you've got to be kidding!" he exclaimed. "I mean, jeez, that other guy back home he had that right off the bat. Sure you can do something quicker than that! I don't want to be stuck doing the French thing that long! I stopped speaking that long ago!" Brian slammed his head down on his arms as they thudded on the table, still upset over this time frame given.

"Oh I got an idea Brian!" Tommy said, good eye lighting up with bolt of inspiration. " What about all you're old research back in the States? What if we all go, grab it, and then you can use it to work on you're machine! I mean that's gotta help you speed things up right?" He asked, looking quite proud of himself.

"You want to got to the "States" by which I believe you mean the heard of United America, the place that we just spent considerable resources and energy to liberate you from." Dustin asked in a mild, almost derisive tone.

"Ya we just head over, go to where they're keeping the information, grab it, and head back."

"How simple. And I don't suppose you know where they would be keeping this highly classified scientific data?"

"No but I'm sure someone there would."

"And they would tell you because of their love of spandex and gaudy costumes?"

"I was thinking more because they didn't want to get thrown in low atmosphere, but if they like our outfits that would work to."

Dustin didn't respond, he just shot a glance over to Roman, You know, even if this entire venture is as foolish as it seems, we could certainly gain quite a bit from letting a band of Super humans with a grudge loose on the UA.

"Young man, six months is being very generous considering what you are asking for. One ever so slight miscalculation, something so incredibly minute that it would seem to be nothing worth bothering with, could you to all of you being flung out of this universe and into nothingness. Something that we cannot even comprehend. So understand that this time frame I've given is for your own safety," Mordtoten explained calmly, though he did not seem amuse that Brian couldn't understand what he was talking about.

Tommy brought up the potential research back in United America, causing Mordtoten to pause and think over his proposal. "Yes, that could help out. I'm not entirely sure of where they would be keeping my old research though if they still have it. There are a few places it could be filed away in, but it would be dangerous to break in any of them. And they'd start locking things down once they find out. You would need to know exactly which one, and not many people would know about them in the first place."

"Only the important higher-ups of the government that are, coincidentally, the hardest to get to would know," Roman said after pouring himself some wine that he had taken from the kitchen. Taking a sip, he responded to Dustin. Doing that would just get them captured or killed. We can put them to better use than that if we can plan this out.

"Well we could at least try it out. Not all of us of course, but just enough to get it done," Garrus chimed in, "If you can get us all the details about it than I say we try it."

"I'm not going to even pretend like I know about what it takes to do it. I'll leave that to the people who know about it," Mordtoten said, looking over at Renee and Roman. Roman just shrugged, muttering something about him needing time to think about a plan.

Renee, however, had an idea. "Tomorrow, I'll let your group know what needs to be done for this little mission 'ere and where else your 'expertise' will be needed. In the morning, I shall 'ave a few meetings with others to figure that out. Until then, I do not 'ave anymore to say on this subject," she explained as she broke her silence on the subject at hand.

"I say meeting adjourned for now, unless anyone 'as anything else?" Renee asked, waiting just a moment before standing up and pushing her chair in. "Herkimer, your usual accommodations here are available."

"Thank you. In the morning I will leave for the lab and begin making it ready for work," he replied, rubbing his eyes tiredly.

"Tyson, a word?" Renee asked the man who had entered the apartment a while ago as she walked by him, heading outside onto the balcony.

Levi frowned. Tommy's suggestion was crazy. Granted, the kind of crazy he was accustomed to as a member of the SoJ, but still crazy. It disheartened him a little more to hear Mordtoten and the others considering it seriously. He wasn't keen on returning to the Orwellian wet dream that was United America, or facing Lector again. And besides, he had to remain here to look after Taryn.

With a heavy sigh, he looked towards Tommy, Brian, and Garrus. "If they come up with a plan and you guys really want to go through with this, I'm not sure if I'll join you." His attention turned back to Mordtoten. "I think I'd be more useful here. I'd like to lend my help to construct this device. After all, I am a scientist."

"...unless anyone 'as anything else?" Jason managed to let out an stifled "Uh-" before Renee quickly departed the scene, taking Tyson with her. "So, was that a rhetorical question, or...?" Erebus questioned the occurrence. "Well, anyway..." The Keyholder sat up in his seat, opening his eyes, brightening his expression, and overall showing his attention as Levi provided his opinion.

"If Tommy's plan actually follows through, then i'll stick with him. I'm a bit more versed in magic than I am in quantum physics, anyway." He volunteered, flexing his fingers and shuffling a bit in his seat. "And by 'a bit more', you really mean 'not really all that much'" Erebus piped up again. "Yup." Jason shot back quickly. "A 12th grade education can only get you but so far." "It was more in vein with the magic claim, but okay..." "What? Kids learn magic in public school too, don't they?" "...Ohhhh child." Erebus concluded the back and forth, head in claws. "What?"

Tyson hadn't had slept nearly enough for what he was going through and almost considered making Serdar kick down the door, or rather just go get a key since his boss owned the hotel, and force him to leave but decided to just comply.

Once he was back into Renee's apartment Tyson hit up her bar for a drink, but ultimately decided to just make full use of her built in water dispenser and took an apple from a fruit bowl. While he ate it he listened to the ongoing conversations and decided that he had nothing to add beside internal dialogue. Levi ignoring what they had talked about before bothered him a little, but given the situation the man had been through recently, he easily let it go.

The plaques and pictures hanging on her walls were something that he felt deserved a little more time to go over. Numerous photos of Renee and what Tyson assumed were various members of her family. Those started out as many from when she appeared to be a baby with her parents and two other brothers. Then it was just her more often by herself or with one parent than all of them together. Before long she had grown into a teenager and a new sibling appeared with both of her parents again. Next she was in the military; various pictures of her with other personnel and more notable Serdar. Those disappeared quickly and returned to just her family and with herself and Serdar, often apart of a premier or opening of some sort.

A single photo stuck out from the rest as it was the only photo containing this person. Both Renee and this man were standing out in a country side smiling like Tyson didn't believe Renee could. So she wasn't always a soul sucking bitch. Tyson thought to himself, before Renee walked past him.

"Tyson, a word?"

Tyson followed Renee outside despite the lack of a coat or jacket. It didn't matter; Tyson could tell that this wouldn't likely take long.

"I know you might not be so keen as to remember your brief stay in Alaska earlier, but I'm going to need you too. Was there anything, anything at all, unusual when you were there? I'm looking for more of a, 'why is this 'ere', than a 'why am I in a foreign place such as this'? Do you understand what I mean?" Renee asked Tyson after closing the door behind them once they stepped out onto the porch. Leading him to the answers she wanted could net false information that could jeopardize the plan that was just beginning to take shape. Remaining vague for now to see what he could recall on his own could bring better results she hoped.

"I'm not quite sure what you mean. It was like I was experiencing living through another person, another creature rather. I wasn't so much seeing as hearing and everything seemed kind of strange and a bit blurry. Trees exploded, a random bear appeared and attacked me like I turned her cubs into a new pair fur boots, and then I was getting half flayed before causing the cliff I was on to collapse taking the bear with it. Bishop said something about that airhead Palin hunting me or something, but beyond that I'm not sure that I'll know what you want to know." Tyson said hoping that what he listed off afterwards might give her something that she wanted, or lead her in the direction of it.

Renee bit down on her lip as she listened to Tyson recalling what he knew, shaking her head once he was done. "I'd prefer to 'ave confirmation that she was there at all instead of just sending some of your group in blindly to find 'er. Maybe taking a look at scouting reports will give me some concrete information," she mused aloud, looking at her shoes while trying to come up with other options, "That is all I needed to ask. Thank you, even though I did not get what I need. That is what the multitude of resources are for."

"If you're talking about Palin, I wouldn't know if she was there. I'm new to the whole sound as eyes thing. If this universe is that same as mine, she hunts wolves from helicopters, so bears might not be too far gone from her hunting prowess. If I were you, I'd just check the report she probably put out. Either someone found a ton of trees that exploded from the inside out, or she was there watching hunting that bear. Based on what Bishop said it doesn't matter, she's hunting me regardless of if she knows it's me or not. If a tree blows up like that again, you'd be sure that she'll show up rifle at the ready." Tyson said as he left the balcony and Renee's apartment back to his own hotel room.

It is going to be a busy night, Renee thought before heading back inside.


Chronic insomnia came in handy on nights where there was work to be done, and Renee certainly had a lot to do once everyone left to go about their business. Planning out missions was an in depth and time consuming process. And I need to find something for those staying behind to do, Renee thought once she sat down at her in-home office, taking the filled out papers the Society had filled out and taking a look at them.

"Let's see...who would work best for this?" she asked herself as she opened up each one and glanced at them. She continued to look between the files before settling on three, placing those to one side separate from the others. "Now comes the best part of these missions planning." The bulk of her night was spent on going through the scouting reports from the last few days, calling up to verify information, minimizing the potential location of the target, and notifying people who needed to know about the mission.

Once the planning for the mission was finished, she moved on to finding things for the rest of them to do which proved to be a far simpler task. Putting their powers to use where needed was what she focused on, keeping most of them in the nearby vicinity in case she found something else for them to do. Not sure who will go for the second part of the mission, but that will be for another night, she thought after stifling a yawn, finishing up for the night.


After a quick breakfast, Doctor Mordtoten took his leave with Renee promising to send some people his way to help clean up his lab. "You will get a few members of the Society 'elping you out, and I'll send my brother that way whenever I see 'im today," Renee said, walking Mordtoten to the elevator. "Hah, just send him. He'd clean the place up in a flash," Mordtoten replied stepping into the elevator, bidding farewell as the doors closed.

Renee walked over to the staff desk and picked up their phone, making an announcement that went over the various room's phones to meet in her home in ten minutes. She heard the rustling of people waking up from her announcement as she went back into her home, taking a seat at the head of her table as she waited.

Soon enough everyone started filing in in various states of alertness. "I 'ope you all slept well," Renee greeted, handing a thin dossier to each one, "It took some time last night, but I managed to come up with both jobs for everyone to do and something that could lead to getting back 'ome quicker."

"Levi, Taryn, and Ethan shall help the good Doctor in building a way to send you all 'ome, with the majority of you providing various amounts of security and legwork that I am sure Herkimer will require," Renee began, reading off from a larger file that she had made, "Katie will get to see some sights when she goes to 'elp some of the much-needed produce producers that feed the numerous mouths of Europe's inhabitants. Brian's power will be put to use in various 'ospitals in that 'elp those most in need. Garrus, I 'ave yet to assign you anything specific since the wanton destruction that your powers bring do not necessarily aid anyone. I'll 'ave something for you soon though."

"I selected Thomas, Jason, and Rowan to partake in the mission I 'ave set up to retrieve a certain United American individual who can give us some answers on where to find Herkimer's old information that was left behind regarding universal travel and all that. Once the information 'as been collected we'll move on to actually collecting the data, which will require much more planning and will involve a number of you to complete it," she told them, mentioning she would get into specifics on the mission to the three members in a while.

"Any questions?" Renee asked to the Society, taking a sip of juice as she watched them read the dossiers.

Brian looked over the folder he had been given. It was pretty straightforward; help people with basic injuries, free up time for the doctors to work on the more critically ill patients. It made sense given what he could do. Plus if things weren't too busy, it would leave ample time for taking in the sights, and sample the wares of the city. Even if there wasn't going to be a decent beer to be had.

"No, I don't think I have any questions about this here," he answered as his stomach growled. He was more eager to get some food into him then go over this any further. "Still not happy, you know. Bout the whole months thing. But I guess if I can do something during it, it'll be all right."

Tommy skimmed through the dossier, a close reading would have no better as the documents inside was a gumbo of initialisms, acronyms, and military jargon. Still after a few minutes he managed to extract the basic gist of the document:

1. Go there.
2. Find the guy.
3. Don't kill guy.
4. Make sure others don't kill they guy.
5. Ask guy questions.
6. Get back to France without getting killed.

It struck him that he wasn't used to dealing with briefings like this. The SoJ normally didn't plan mission, the closest they got to a briefing most days was Garrus running out of the shower to interrupt their lunch and explaining that Major Crime was threatening to kill the judges of America's Got Talent or something. From there anything resembling a plan was entirely off the cuff. He looked up to Renee, "Alright, seems good, when do we head out?" he said.

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