Another Unwanted Visitor, Part 4
Location: Talon’s Lair - Location Unknown
Timeline: The Year of the Apocalypse - 22 January 2012
“I’m tired of everything good in my life just winding up causing me pain,” Bethany said with a shrug. She nibbled a bit more at the cake, then continued, “I don’t think I’m going to find any purpose at the Tower. I don’t mean to be ungrateful, but I hate it there. I speak four different languages and I still get confused by the slang. I’ve never been to a school, and some people assume that means that I’m stupid. I can calculate a bullet’s trajectory in seconds, but that doesn’t have a whole lot of uses in the world, I guess. I just don’t...fit in anywhere.”
“That particular skill has more uses than you would think,” Dyami muttered under his breath then laughed. “You are good for more than that. Besides, if you don’t fit in there maybe you can find somewhere else to fit in.” The blue eyed man cut himself another large piece of cake and offered more to Beth. “Besides life is not all about fitting in. Sometimes you have to change your surroundings to fit yourself.”
“I was trained to be a terrorist. Some soldier in the Preacher’s warped anti-mutant army,” Bethany said, waving off the offer of more cake. She took up her lemonade and sipped at it. “Mama taught me languages that he would allow, but nothing more. If it didn’t pertain to killing “Nephilim”, or being a wife to some cretinous hunk of useless flesh, it wasn’t deemed important. Now I’m stuck in a world that I know nothing about, that I don’t really want to be a part of. I don’t know. Maybe the Underground is the best place for me. At least my skills might be useful there. At least until I manage to blow myself up, or something.”
“I was with you there until that last part. I do not plan on allowing you to blow yourself up. You are already beginning to learn to control your powers and trust me, I can help you with that, danger room or not.” Dyami ate a couple bites of his cake while the listened to the babbling of the stream, which could just be heard in the home. “Let me ask you something. You said you live in a world that you know nothing about. Do you want to learn about this new world?”
“I wasn’t talking about my powers. Not a whole lot of people know this, but I’m rather adept with explosives,” Bethany said quietly. She sighed, and shrugged. “Honestly? Right now, I don’t really care very much about anything. Living in this world means having to learn to adapt though. I’m just so...tired. Tired of fighting so hard, tired of dealing with people, tired of existing. I’m not sure how to get past that.”
Dyami chuckled and responded, “You really do still have some tricks up your sleeve. Your father may have made his biggest mistake, raising you the way he did, giving you a set of skills most people will never know, and then denigrated what you would eventually become.” The Shaman pushed his hair back and set his plate on the side table next to him. Leaning back on his chair he continued, “If you do join the underground I will have to train you on quite a few things, things that will not be easy for you to learn. One of the questions you have to answer before you join is are you willing to make the effort that will be required of you?”
“Don’t call him that,” Bethany said, her eyes squeezing shut, her jaw clenching. “I can’t stand the fact that that...monster’s blood flows in my veins. If you have to talk about that fiend, call him the Preacher or something.”
The green-eyed young woman sighed heavily, then raised her eyes back to Dyami. “He made a mistake alright. He trained me to kill, then killed my mother in front of me. He didn’t know it, but she was the only reason I hadn’t already killed him. But, he got a bullet in the head for his efforts, and I’m the one that put it there. As for the rest, I have to think about things. I’m just trying to find a reason to keep going. But if I do decide to join, I’ll put everything that I have into it.”
“Then he got what he deserved, I truly wish I would have known of that place before you had to dish that punishment out though. My alter ego has gobbled up a few cult leaders in my time.” Dyami made scary hand gestures and laughed. “I have no doubt that you will give it your all. You seem to do that on a regular basis.”
Bethany chuckled a bit darkly at Dyami’s hand gestures, then shook her head. “Maybe you could have saved all of the kids that I killed when I awakened after my mother bled out in my arms.”
“Maybes are fun to speculate about, but you know as well as I do that they do not change anything. Just know that had I known what was going on there, things would have been different. It is one of the reasons I need you and Jon. To make sure that others do not have to go through the hell that he put you through.” Dyami took a drink and stared at his ice cubes for a moment before saying, “Of all the things I can do, time travel is the one I find myself wishing for the most.”
Bethany shuddered visibly. “One of the things that weird Lorde guy said, was that he could bring my mother back. He said that he could bring all of them back.”
“There is a cost to all magic, be it to the user, the recipient, or the universe itself. I fear that the cost of that much change would be great indeed.” Dyami said sagely.
“I’m afraid that’s what he did to me,” Bethany admitted quietly as she stared off into space. “Matthew said that he couldn’t say that I was the same person when I came back. I don’t have any of my scars, bullet wounds, or old breaks in my bones anymore.”
“He does wield powerful magics, you saw him heal me with but a word. If it is any consolation I cannot sense any change in you. You smell the same, and when I joined you to Jon, your soul was a real normal soul.” Dyami leaned forward. “Do you feel that you have changed?”
“I...I don’t know,” Bethany said, her voice nearly a choked whisper. “I mean, he brought back people that I killed myself at the mall. I don’t think I’m different, but still. I wonder if they think that they’re still the same. It just really surprised me, bothered me, when Matthew said that he couldn’t say that I was the same person anymore.”
“I can understand how you would be bothered by that, A great many things he did bothered me tremendously but, as I said, I think that you are the real you, as you have always been.” Dyami stretched in his chair and said,” So how long do you want to stay away? I think it would not be a stretch to let you stay here tonight. You are safe and no one can find you here.
The young woman eyed Dyami briefly, then shrugged. “It’s better than the danger room,” she said, chuckling slightly. She then gave a heavy sigh. “I have to face all of this, but I don’t want to right now. I just feel weak and hopeless. I’m not used to feeling like that, ya know? It bothers me to feel like this.”
“Feelings of weakness are some of the hardest to deal with, sometimes it helps to do something to make yourself feel strong again. But be warned, many a good person has started off down the wrong path by taking that step. Also, if you do not have hope, have Faith that your God has a plan for you and that all things will work out for good.” Dyami motioned around his home, “Mi casa es su casa. Feel free to explore to your hearts content. Or go visit with our friend out there I am pretty sure she would be up for a game of fetch if you have a good arm.” The Shaman stood, “I am going to make some dinner. How does a steak and some fries sound?”
“I’m not so sure that God wants anything to do with me after some of the things I’ve done,” Bethany said, giving the shaman a sad smile. “I talk to Him, but it almost feels like it’s more out of habit now, than the way it used to feel. Anyway, steak actually sounds really good right now.” She grinned at Dyami, “I kind of like mine still bleeding.”
“A girl after my own heart.” Dyami chuckled and pulled two large steaks out of the fridge and a bowl of cut up potatoes and onions. Turning on the stove he removed a few pans from the cupboard and began cooking. “Earlier you mentioned you did not hear a generator, there is not one.” The Shaman pointed at the crystals on the ceiling. “They seem to power any electrical device,” He pulled out his phone and showed her that it was charging even though it wasn’t plugged in.
“The crystals? That doesn’t make much sense. I don’t understand most of technology as it is, though, so I have no idea why in the world you’re able to use electricity here if you don’t have a generator,” Bethany said, shaking her head and chuckling a bit. She glanced at the crystals, eyeing them a bit, then shrugged, “I mean, we used generators at the compound, so I’m not a complete heathen in that way or anything. But still, that’s not even plugged in to anything.”
“Do not ask me. I know very little about how technology works, but I have always been curious as to what those are.” The Shaman said motioning to the ceiling. “I mean are they part of a machine or do they do it on their own. Maybe I will bring a piece of one to Sean one day just to see the look on his face.”
Bethany rolled her eyes at the mention of the boy genius that seemed to enjoy treating her no better than a lab rat. “He’s got some good ideas, I guess. But he’s a bit of a jerk. I think I’d just avoid that, or he’ll be trying to find his way in here, whether you want him to or not.”
The Shaman laughed. “You are probably right. When he gets something in his mind he is like a bulldog.” The aroma of frying Texas fries, sauteed onions, and searing steak wafted out of the room and into the cavern beyond. There, in the dim light, the bear smelled the cooking food and came lumbering up to the door of Dyami’s home, and poked her head inside.
The tactical teen heard the heavy breathing of the enormous animal and glanced over at the door, her eyes widening a touch. “Umm...is the bear allowed in here? I think she smelled the food.” Bethany got up and made her way tentatively to the door, making sure to move with caution so as not to startle the creature. She grinned a bit to herself as she approached and held out her hand. “You’re a beautiful being,” she muttered, then chuckled. “But something tells me that you know that already.”
Dyami laughed and said, “Well, at one time she was allowed but she is unable to make it through the door more than her head now. And she is not so much hungry after eating, she probably wants to play.”