2010-03-12-17: A Very Long Week


Mike_icon.jpg Scott_icon.jpg Forge_icon.jpg Cloud_icon.jpg July_icon.jpg Annalisa_icon.jpg Chloe_icon.jpg Kenta_icon.jpg Addison_icon.jpg Rashmi_icon.jpg

Summary: Mike spends a week in the Medbay, and this is some of what happens.

Date: March 12, 2010 thru March 17, 2010

Log Title A Very Long Week

Rating: PG-13

Xavier Mansion - Medical Bay

The Medical Bay contains the latest medical equipment to patch up students and X-Men with the smallest and worst injuries. Six beds line the walls for injured patients. Equipment lines the walls, medicine in the cabinets, and more serious medical supplies locked in cabinets. One this about this room it screams sterilization.

Note: various characters are mentioned. Some actions are interpolated and appear with the permission of their players. Others were present in the room while Mike was being repaired over the course of nearly a week.

March 12, 2010
It is the morning after Magneto's visit. Forge has come and gone any number of times, and has finished anything he can do to fix Mike's main processor and battery, and has emp-hardened that system and provided the necessary interior changes to provide it to the rest of Mike's chassis, and has updated the schematic (!) via the Shiar device to ensure that it will still be there when Mike next reconstitutes himself. It's a small change though. Meanwhile, this morning, Scott has been in and out and has taken Mike's head … off. And removed his drive motor, that sits around where he would have lungs. Mike's main processor still sits where his heart and liver would be, and the power arm with the trickle charger is still providing him with energy, but he looks even more not-alive than he did before.

Several quiet hours pass without even the benefit of music.

Someone brings an injured Cloud in and installs him in a medbay bed. He's told to stay, but we all know how well that sort of thing works.

It's been about twelve hours since Cloud was found outside the gates of the mansion with serious memory issues and the words "Summers - They are my marauders now" carved into his chest, hes now got bandeges wrapped around his chest and is sitting up in a bed trying to piece together the broken pieces of memories in his head, his eyes and nails are black, the blood vessles in his face have become more prominant and has some Summers-like personality traits bouncing around his head.

July has heard that Cloud is back to the mansion, and so July came check. Still wearing her new blue-and-yellow X-school costume, she smiles a bit as she steps inside, "Hey, Cloud." the girl says as she enters the medbay, "I heard you were back, so I came to check up on you. Are you alright?" she asks softly.

Cloud look round when July enters and begins speaking to him, he only knows shes talking to him because she said his name, "Hello blue and white girl, i'm ok i think, have we met?"

July stops and blink-blinks softly as Cloud doesn't recognize her. "Oh, right, the memory loss." she nods softly, moving to sit next to Cloud's bed. "I'm July. We are friends. I graduated here, and fought alongside you, Rashmi and Lucas, against Jordan that tried to break into a house. You were taken with Jordan to wherever is his base." she smiles.

Annalisa walks into the medical bay with a sigh. She didn't know who Cloud was or that July was there, but what she did know was, her finger was cut, pretty deep, and she was looking for medicine and a band-aid. She blinks as she walks in and spies July, but doesn't immediately say anything, seeming a bit shocked.

Cloud sighs and closes his eyes as he tries to remember the girl called July, he gets a few flashes of the fight and him saying her name, "I know you, yeah, a fight, stuff broke", he doesn't remember what broke but he knows stuff did. He catches sight of Annalisa out of the corner of his black eyes, he wispers to July, "Do i know her?"

In his medbay, hooked to a trickle charger, Mike is asleep. Or something close to it. The voices bring him around. He grumbles internally and tries to go back to sleep but the sound keeps him awake.

July nods softly to Cloud, smiling, "Yeah, a lot of stuff happened there." but then at the mention of 'her', July turns her head to look at whoever just showed up, and she sees Annalisa, and so she smiles, "Oh, hey, Anna." she stands up gently, and then nods to Cloud, "Yeah, she's my girlfriend." she says, before blinking softly as she notices something, "Um, since when are your eyes black, Cloud?"

Annalisa waves at July with a smile, dripping some blood on the floor. She shakes her head and runs over to a sink, and begins to wash her cut finger. "Hi July! Hi…guy."

Cloud shrugs, "Im not sure, urrm, the guy with the red glasses tried to help me to the medbay, wherever that is, apparently when he made skin contact, i absorbed his life-force, so it made me look different", he wave to Annalisa, "Hello, July's girlfriend".

July blinks softly, "Huh, I thought you two met already." She says, before looking at Annalisa and standing up again, "Her name's Anna. Hey, Anna?" She calls out. "Everything alright, there? You cut your finger?"

Annalisa glances back and nods at July. "I'm a klutz." She says, finishing washing her finger, she dries it off with a towel slowly.

July chuckles gently at Annalisa's remark, and she nods gently, "Well, how did you cut yourself?" she asks, before looking at Cloud, "Cloud, do you remember anything prior to your arrival to the school?"

Annalisa reaches into a cabinent and retrieves some gauze, she starts to wrap her finger up. "I was trying to cook stuff, cutting lettuce up…not good at dicing…"

Cloud shrugs, "I'm not sure, i get flashes of stuff but they don't make a lot of sence", he remebers what he needed to do yesterday, "Do you know who Star is?, cos i need to text whoever it is", he jumps when the klaxons start going off.

Cloud leaves to chase down the alarm.

July hears the alarms before anything else. "Damn it. Something's going on." she frowns as she looks up, and then looks at Annalisa, "Anna, stay here, take care of Cloud, something bad is going on. I'll go check it out." Superhero to the rescue!

Annalisa glances about, shaking her head. She was bed ridden, why would it matter? She runs out the door following July.

Their activities continue in A Breach Of Security before their injured selves are brought back.
One day passes with July unconscious in a container that protects her from contamination and random people paddling their hands in her body.

March 14, 2010. Sunday.

At some point in the morning, Scott returns, checking a few things on the schematic that shows on Mike's medbay scanner screen.
He takes notes, tells Mike that things are coming along well but they need to get a part on order, and leaves.

Two more hours pass.

Not much of a fan of hospitals and the like Chloe has done her best to avoid trips to the Medical bay so far. Of course given the number of people who've been down here lately it seemed rude not to come down and wish people well. Thus the basket of fruit and a bundle of rather worn magazines.

Not long after Chloe's arrival, the blob of amorphous, flesh-tone goo starts to wobble slowly, and then slowly starts growing, and reforming into the girl known as July. "Owww…" she groans, holding her head as she blinks slowly, apparently waking from a deep slumber. "Where am I?" she asks, not immediately recognizing the med bay.

"Back at school," Chloe informs. Trying her utmost to sound cheerful. "Guess college life wasn't very fun so you had to come back visit huh?" She tuts. "Kind of an extreme way to go about it though. I bet they'd make up a guest room if you asked nicely, want some fruit? I have uhm… oranges mostly."

July rubs her temples a bit, "Oww… damn, Skyler blew a hole through me…" she says, bringing her hands now to her belly, where the hole was done. Fortunately, she's not a normal girl. "Vaporized quite a bit of me. I'm so damn hungry. Plus my throat is sore, for some reason…"

Chloe holds out the fruit basket. "I've got no idea if you're allowed to eat anything," she admits. "So I'll just put these here and look elsewhere. If any happen to get eaten…" She shrugs and turns her back on the fruit. "I'm beginning to think this school isn't an especially safe place."

July stretches one arm toward the basket, and pulls it onto her lap, "If I can't, or can, I don't care. Way too hungry!" she says, as she picks up an apple and takes a bite off it. "But this place is safe, all things considered, Chloe." she says softly.

"Nothing short of a nasty blow to the head could convince me we're safe here," Chloe informs, turning and grinning. "Good to see
you're not seriously hurt at least. I've got a few magazines to read too, they're a bit worn I'm afraid. I re-read some about fifty times during lockdown."

July sighs softly at that, as she finishes with one apple, and starts to peel one of the bananas, "Think about it this way: being attacked here, if the automated defenses don't stop the attacker, and you do get hurt, you get immediate treatment here." she says, inbetween bites of fruit. "Out in the open, outside the school, no one, and nothing, would protect you, and if you do get hurt, you'll either be left alone, no one coming to your aid, or you'd be arrested for being a mutant." she poitns out.

Chloe rolls her eyes, slowly enough for people to see. "That's like saying candy is safer because you're keeping it in a pinata."

July smiles a bit. "Plus, here, you're taught how to control your powers." she says softly, smiling. "And would you feel safer out there, or here, among your friends, at least until you fully learn of all your power potentials?" she tilts her head softly.

"Right now I'd rather live in a cave in deepest darkest Peru," Chloe admits, helping herself to an apple. "But anyway how's things with you aside from this Skyler exploding you? I'm guessing college is going okay?"

July smiles, "Well, despite having a hunger so big I could eat a whole horse, I'm fine. I wish there were less painful ways of finding out I can survive having a hole blown through my chest, though." she shakes her head softly, chuckling lightly. "As for college, things are going fine, so far. But, then again, I'm at the easy part, that is the junior years." she smirks softly, eating her second apple.

Chloe grins. "Hopefully it'll prove useless knowledge because no-one else will try blow holes in you again," she notes. "Met any cool new people? Or is it just like highschool only with harder classes?"

July chuckles softly at that, smiling. "Y'know what they say: Jerks will be jerks, jocks will be jocks, classes will be classes, and cheerleaders will be cheerleaders." she shrugs lightly. "It's like high school, the only difference is that you don't live at home anymore, and everything I just said is harder." she smirks softly.

Sunday; early morning in Washington State, and Kyrios Drakos (Mike's father) is on the phone to his wife from his garage in Indiana. "Nei, mama, I got an email from that Rashmi girl. Cleanthes is still in their medical place. Sure, I'll send her a question. So, you want me to ask? Ah, got it. 'what exactly was he doing that got him injured, and what exactly are the injuries' … I still think double-checking the headmaster isn't necessary. What, we talked." He sighs, "Yes, he's another car fanatic."

July chuckles, "Well, friends are friends too, and that is true too in college. It's a fun adventure, that's for sure." she giggles softly at that, and then oh's as she hears about meditation. She eats another apple while listening, and smiles, "Oh, that's nice. When you get enlightened, lemme know and I'll be your disciple." she giggles.

Chloe nods. "Perhaps I'll share the secrets of reality. It all depends on how cool they are, part of me worries it'll turn out to be lame. Which is why no-one does the whole ascetic thing anymore. Too much hard work for answers which don't really work right."
July smirks as she stretches a bit, yawning some before resuming her eating, "I'll bet the answer for the mysteries of life is 42." she nods sagely before igggling.

"Why forty two?" Chloe wonders, eyes blinking in a superspeed flutter. "You know I'm actually serious about finding enlightenment right? I mean I already feel like I'm close to a breakthrough using my newest meditation technqiue. Jumping off the roof gives me plenty of time to contemplate stuff as I fall."

Rashmi answers the text message from Kyrios, 'He's doing wonderfully, he should be out any time now, there are some of the most amazing people working on him, etc etc etc'
His reply is a simple, 'We're his parents. Cut the smog. What happened and how bad is it? Should we come out there?'
Rashmi gulps and replies, 'He was coming back from the school's chapel so he wouldn't miss curfew, got caught on the fringes of another mutant's loss of control, and was EMP'd. It's not necessary that you come, and he wouldnt be able to get up or anything, but he is conscious and I'm sure Mike would appreciate it. But you should maybe set something up with the Headmaster?'
That seems to keep Kyrios happy, because there's no nagging message the rest of the day, nor the next, though there is a brief "thank you" message from Mike's mom the next morning.

July blinks? "…" she finds herself speechless. She then takes another bite off her third apple and shakes her head as she chews. "Jumping off the roof, Chloe? What happeend with crossing your legs and closing your eyes?" she chuckles.

"I tried that but my muscles cramp up so quickly it wasn't even funny to think about trying that way," Chloe says with a shrug. "Falling gives this sense of clarity and it's really fun. Plus it freaks people who see out."

July rolls her eyes at that, and chuckles, "That much I know." she smirks, and shakes her head softly, as she goes on with devouring the fruit basket's contents. "But there has to be something that's safer for you to meditate."

Chloe grins impishly. "Where would the fun be in that? Besides every time I think about finding another way I think 'what would our fearless leader say' and then I know there's no way I'm changing my technique."

July shakes her head softly again and chuckles, and then she's done with the basket. Still one apple and a couple bananas left. "Thanks a ton, Chloe. That surely hit the spot. Damn. I think I get hungry if I lose flesh by whatever means." she frowns softly at that.

"Well… You did just have a major league crash diet," Chloe points out. "It's not like you can rebuild yourself without a ton of food although I kinda wonder if this means you could cut yourself in half, then get both halves to become a new you."

July hmms softly, "Well.. I'm pretty sure that, if I get cleaved in half, I think I'd be able to control only one half of me." she shrugs softly at that. "I mean, if I could split myself into more bodies, whenever I clipped my nails I'd have created more bodies of me." she shrugs softly.

Chloe frowns. "Did you feed the clippings?" she asks curiously. "And what if you got cut straight down the middle. Half your brain in each halve."

July hmms softly at that. "Considering I got no heart, because I got the blast squarely on the chest, blowing my lungs, heart and spine away… I'm pretty sure I don't have a physical 'brain'." she shrugs at that.

"Also… Silly question but with your mutation why do you even need to clip your nails?" Chloe ponders, idly wandering back and forth. "If you have no brain it's even more likely to work right? Because you don't have to worry about being brain dead or anything. Not that I'm suggesting you try it of course…"

July blinks softly at the mention of clipping nails. "Hmm. I guess I'm just too used to it, that my body grows the nails and everything by reflex." she shrugs softly, "And, as far the brain thing, I'm pretty sure I can't be in two places at the same time because my soul would be in just one of the halves." she tries.

Chloe blinks a few times. "There's probably like a bunch of good medical reasons which'll work even with your biology. Souls probably don't even need to come into it. But anyway the whole cutting people in half topic is perhaps something we shouldn't talk about here?" She glances at some of the weird medical gizmos. "What /is/ this all anyway? I used to watch a lot of medical drama shows but none of them had anything like this."

July chuckles gently, "I guess this is the safest place to talk about it, provided we don't actually ACT on it." she says, smiling softly, still sitting on her bed. "As for this place… well, I read somewhere that this place used alien technology."

"Cutting people in half isn't really get well soon talk," Chloe points out, waving her hand to indicate the rest of the room. "Alien technology? Creepy… I mean why would alien machines work on people? Unless they'd come to experiment on us and great we've gone right back onto the topic of experimenting on people again."

July chuckles gently, "From what I've read in the libraries here…" she says, looking around slowly. "A lot of aliens have human-like biology. So it's not far-fetched."

Chloe head tilts. "So if there is a god they have a /really/ lousy imagination," she muses. "The school library has books on /real/ aliens? As in a non-fiction section on them. This has got to be some kind of tease the younger students thing, right?"

July shakes her head, "Rumors say it that professor Xavier, founder of this school, had an affair with an alien queen." she says, nodding. "Shiar, or something like that. Not sure if it's the race name, or name of the queen." she shrugs softly. "But, yeah, they're real."

"/Ick/," Chloe states solemnly. "I didn't really need to know that. Now I'm not sure I'll be able to eat anything for the rest of the day."

July chuckles softly. "Hey, send your food my way, then. I could use the nourishment." she says, smiling softly at that and giggling. "Anyways…" she slips off bed and stands up, stretching a bit. "How's things in the school? Sans last attack, of course?"

"Meh. I had the joy of being the one who first encountered Cloud after his kidnapping," Chloe explains with a scowl. "So I hit my panic button and didn't open the front gates until help came. Because he was acting weird and could barely walk." Her pacing shifts to stomping. "Then Cyclops turns up and starts being a jerk because I didn't open the gates immediately. What was I supposed to do? I just about know how to put a bandaid on a cut, mutilated students are way beyond my first aid skills. Plus he was brainwashed and everyone has been talking about people who've gone missing turning up evil."

July nods softly, "It's understandable. Who knows what's in the headmasters' heads?" she shrugs softly, smiling, "Well, want to go to the cafeteria? I sure could use a snack right now."

"The other end of whichever rod he must have sat on. That's what'll be in there," Chloe suggests innocently. "Thanks for the offer,
but I probably should head off and get back to my training regime. The next time people storm the school I want to be in the best shape possible for getting the hell out of the way.."

July ah's and nods, smiling, "Alright. That's a good idea. As for me, I need more food, still." she says, chuckling a bit. "I guess… if I lose any mass, I replace it, but get depleted on energy. I don't know, it's a crude hunch." she shrugs.

Chloe nods. "Sounds way too much like biology homework for me to know! Anyway it's good that you're doing okay," she replies with a grin. "I think perhaps I'll work on high speed turns for a bit. You wouldn't believe how tricky turning gets past a hundred miles an hour. So I shall cya laters."

Blessed quiet. July is resting, Chloe is out tearing up her shoes, Mike is… still without a motor. The sensor block has been finished and almost replaced but without the motor, it doesn't run correctly. A design flaw, that. Along with EMP weakness, which is at least fixed in the new head. And it doesn't fit quite right, the schematic complained that it wouldn't reach. So back out to the mechanical bay where Forge and Scott can tinker with it. Mike wishes, briefly, that he could be out there, instead of here, but this machine can keep him alive if something goes too crazy.

Two hours later, about 4pm

Annalisa comes walking into the medical bay with a sigh. She was a bit sore, but recovered from Cloud's effect on her with some bed rest. She wanted to see if July had awoke, and when she saw her, a smile broke across her face. "July! How are you feeling?"

Annalisa runs over to plop down on the bed next to July, she looks over her slowly. "But…you're okay?"

July chuckjles and nods gently, smiling. "Yeah. Sore all over, hungry as hell… but good as new, I believe." she says, nodding softly as she rubs her arms slowly.

July smiles softly, "That'd be awesome, but I gotta stay here and wait for Hank's checkup before I'm let out. He should be around soon." she nods softly.

Annalisa puffs her lips up in a pouty manner, but nods. "Do you want me to get you something? I'm only a little tired, I didn't get hurt…I wish I had been more useful.."

July smiles and pat-pats Annalisa's shoulder. "That's ok. It's not like we'd all guess that you'd be taken by Skyler, then drained by Cloud." she shakes her head softly, "It happens. Just work on your powers like everyone here."

Annalisa pecks July's cheek lightly, and nods. "You don't want me to go get you something to eat?"

July giggles softly at the peck, and she thinks, "Hm… I guess so. Just fruits, though. Not sure if I'm allowed to eat anything I want before a checkup." she says, smiling.

Annalisa nods happily, before running off out the door. Shes missing for several minutes, before she comes back carrying a pear and an apple. "Which one would you like?"

July smiles as she reaches for the red fruit. "I'll take the apple, thank you, Anna." she says, nodding as she brings the apple to her lips and takes a bite off it. "How are you doing, by the way? I heard Cloud's absorption can really do a number on someone."

Annalisa plops down on the bed, and takes a bite of the pear. "I'm tired, and I was in bed for a while, but I'll be okay…"

July nods softly at that, "That's good to know." she says, smiling. "Y'know, despite being deranged, Skyler did say something right back there: you have great potential, Anna."

July nods softly, smiling a bit, "Yeah. It was him." she shrugs gently. "Apparently Mr. Sinister even boosted his powers, letting him change at will."

Annalisa stares blankly, looking down to the floor. "How awful…" She says, chewing on the pear lightly.

July nods softly. "Yeah. I can only wonder what Mr. Sinister did to him." she says softly before taking a bite off her apple. "Well… I guess I should take a bit more rest before the check up. See you later, Anna?" she smiles a bit.

It's later that day, around 9pm.
Mike considers … Scott said he thinks he's got the engine fixed, but he can't test the linkages. How do you dry-run an engine that doesn't have its linkages in 3-space? Obviously you just … can't really. He thinks about the problem of how, if he were to design a humanoid mechanical body, he would go about it with his modern knowledge. First, none of this gasoline-and-gear-driven business. That's no good. Power plant should be fuel cells, or nuclear cell, or something multiply redundant. Multiple micro-power-units. Distributed across the body. Repair systems. Possibly some sort of fabrication/refabrication unit. Nanotech is complicated and weird, but if you don't HAVE to go nano, if you can use real world materials and simply rotate them dimensionally to reduce cross-section and interactive mass… He makes a mental sketchpad and begins laying out designs.

Hours pass. Two. Three. At 11pm, he stops, preparing to save his work by sending it off to that "archive this" place in his mindscape.

A warm radiance flows into Mike's mind. It seems to jump in for a mere sliver of a second, searching for something before it flows out. The heat grows in intensity before it leaves, as an almost psychic fire fills his mindscape. However, it's not painful. A few minutes after it leaves, he experiences something. A bird cry, followed by a male voice. It starts off weak, before strengthening. "Please… help me." The mental heat can be felt by each person. The feeling is directional, too, pointing towards Salem Center.

The male voice resumes itself, this time in more strength. "I will stand. I will rise…




Then, the presence is gone.

After a moment Mike is able to think coherently again. All his designs have tiny flaming birds all over them.
He looks at each of them. Groans in his mindscape. Going to have to erase it all and try over again. He clears it and starts an archive-process running.

A few minutes later, Kenta comes in, carrying Addison. He places Addison in one medbay bed, pushes the "start" and falls into a second one himself, groaning as he activates it for himself…

Early Morning. Monday, March 15, 2010

Cloud's been down here for about two days now and even though it's past one in the morning, he can't sleep, draining all that energy has left him very buzzed, he's sitting up in bed thinking, 1. who is Star?, 2. Must disipline someone, 3. Do mean things, 4. July is pretty, 5. What's that metal thing over there?, he's dressed in pale blue jeans, has a scar on his chest saying "Summers - They are my Maruders now", the blood vessles in his face are more prominant and his eyes and nails are black.

That metal thing over there has been watching Cloud move around. At the moment Mike (the metal thing) sees the world only in terms of surfaces, like a radar-image with nothing transparent. The scar he cannot see. The sitting and moving around he can, and he finally gives up and says, in his mechanical-electronic voice, "Cloud Rosen, what did you do to yourself?"

Cloud litraly jumps when Mike speaks, "What was that?, who's there?", he gets out of bed and looks around, "I can't see you, come out please", hmm, where is that coming from, huh, maybe the radio…

Mike sighs to himself. "Cloud, it's me, Mike Drakos. Mike the Bike. I'm right in front of you, the metal guy on the medical table. You're my squadmate. We've trained together. What happened to you?"

Cloud stares at the metal statue thing on the table, "Urrm, hello metal man mike, I'm Cloud", he walks over to him, "Why aren't you moving, or are you a stature, July's really pretty".

The robot IS the source of the noise. "Cloud, July is gumby. You sound like Annalisa there. She's the one who's obsessed with July. Snap out of it. man."

Cloud looks confused, which isn't hard at the moment, if he was a cartoon he'd have big old question marks around his head, "No, her names definatly July, not Grumby, or is it?", he scratches his head, "and Annalisa's that other blond girl, not the one that wouldn't let me in, the other one", then he nods, "Ok, but what am i snapping out of?"

Mike can't quite laugh yet, so he says, "Hah! Gumby is a rubbery stretchy animated character. July is made of elastic and sleeps in a bucket. She's nice enough but she's not that pretty, not compared to several others here."
He pauses to try to figure out how to explain what Cloud should snap out of. "You're not concentrating very well. It's like you're going all autistic. Or maybe I mean like you're on drugs."

Cloud nods, "Yes she was in a bucket cos she got hit by that changing person and went all gooey", then shakes his head, "I don't think i'm on drugs or am autistic am i?, but i have ben told i have amnisia".

The robot takes that in. "Amnesia … so your brain isn't connecting while my body isn't connecting. I was damaged a few days back — it was like being hit by lightning. My motor and senses are badly damaged. But they're finding the parts, and I'll be better sometime.

Cloud nods, "Well i hope you get better metal man mike", he then turns and goes back to his bad to think some more.

Mike doesn't shrug, but certainly would if he could. "You think about who you are, Cloud. Try to find your edges. I don't want to be training with Annalisa."
He goes back to designing his car-of-the-future.

daytime, Monday March 15, 2010. Still in the MedBay.

Scott has replaced the sensor bundle again. Mike's head is complete, but without the engine it still doesn't work.
Mike is bored. Everyone's been so busy they just forgot to come by. He's even a little out of the loop on the rumor mill.
He wonders whether they use a roomba to clean the floors here. Then he wonders if it would get close enough to merge with it.
Though it's not a vehicle. Maybe if there was a spider or a cockroach sitting on top. Or a kitten! Yeah! A kitten on a roomba, that would be close enough to being a vehicle!

No roomba appears, not even one without a kitten.

around 8pm, Monday March 15, 2010. Still in the MedBay.

Mike walked to class, dragging his feet, shoelace untied, slowly nursing an orange creamsicle. He waved to Professor Drake and Max as they built an igloo out of frozen blocks of radiant purple time. They laughed in synch and threw identical purple timeballs at him, but he dodged, slipping and falling into the tarpit. Tar all over his head and chest. Gross. He pulled off his shirt but the tar went all the way through.
He went to the lake to wash off. Rashmi was there wearing a lawyer's wig over a bishop's mitre. Before he could complain she said, "WASH THYSELF!" and there was a beautiful red Plymouth Firebird in mint condition, and she was pointing to it, "WASH THYSELF!"
He woke up. The medbay was quiet, his robot body was still inert. Subconscious, he said to himself, Please to stop being obscure.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010. Still in the medbay.

Scott has come and left. The engine has been tested but one of the electrical parts, a voltage controller on the ignition system, that had apparently survived the EMP, failed and burned out. They had to order a replacement overnight shipped. Scott was apologetic about the delay, but had no time to discuss, and Mike doesn't press it. He's glad they found the problem before installing it.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010. Medbay.

Early morning. Mike has a repaired, better-than-new engine, and a repaired, better-than-new sensory pod. Better than new in each case because they've been given a properly Forge-approved EMP shielding. And now… No, he doesn't get to get up and run around. New fuel has been put into his tank and he's running his engine on idle, while the Shiar machine watches for problems. After a five-hour burn-in, he'll be allowed out.

As he waits, Addison keeps flickering, that flame-bird thing goes on and off. He keeps getting a very strange smile too. It would creep Mike out except he doesn't know he should be — all he remembers is that friendly but transient hot-presence, that left flaming-bird fingerprints all over. Of course, this is when the firey-aura flickers a wing over to where Cloud is lying on his bed muttering incoherently. And it takes barely a count of five before it pulls back into Addison, and Cloud says, "What the… Medbay?" and sits up and looks around with the first non-damaged expression he's had in days.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010. Afternoon.

"You're clear to go, Mike."

The robot boy is out of there so fast there's almost a sonic boom.

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