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Sep 6 2005
(OOC: Ok for those of you that haven't read it, this is a spin off from my story Innocence Lost which takes place after chapter 11 in that story.)
Dr. Owen Fairfield Marsh watched in amazement at the prone form in front of him. He lay there crumpled in a black heap. Only moments ago he had been violently throwing himself against the electrical force field. The needles on the guages would fall flat them rise again as they give out the enormous readings of energy used in each attack. The demon Thagirion had taken on human form. He had taken the form of the wealthy business man Davon Ember Flare. In the one instant that he was not trying to fee himself is when it had happened. An erant bolt had shot out and lassoed around Davon. Owen knew it had to be the energy source lashing back. In a desperate effort to escape Davon tried to return to demon form, but only half of his true self emerged before he was thrown back. Owen came as close as he dared and looked through the crackling blue energy field. The original power source was gone and they were only conatining him with the back up power. If he did regain consciousness and tried his attack again it was very possible that their devil would escape. That was the last thing any of them needed.
Owen ran to the back and immediately called his boss Jerone Thanatos. Moments later the dark haired man entered the room. He walked stright towards the feild. His hair fell loose on his shoulders. His eyes were dark and he had a large jagged scar on each cheek. He watched Davon a moment then suddenly he began to stir. Thanatos watched him intently as Davon raised his arms and slowly pushed himself up. From his back jutted seven long black spines. Two broad boney bat like wings hung limp around him. There were no membranes on them. Lastly a long thin tail trailed behind him and was tipped with a black metal five point star. Davon just held his head not seeming to realize his condition.
"Well this is an interesting situation isn't it?" Thanatos said.
Davon looked up at him realizing he was not alone and that's when Thanatos noticed another change in him. Davon's right eye was its normal vibrant emerald green, but his left had been changed to a bloody crimson red.
"Who are you?" Davon said weakly, his hair hanging down into his eyes.
Thanatos cocked his head curious.
"Come now, let's not play these games."
"What...what's happened to me? Where am I?" Davon said finally noticing the wings and jumping back at the sight of them. Thanatos raised an eyebrow. Davon actually looked scared. Fear was something he knew well. He'd seen it many times and knew when someone was trying to fake it. Davon was afraid and it was sincere.
"Dr. Marsh. Please lower part of the field. I'd like to go in."
"What? Are you crazy? You can't go in there. He's clearly..."
Thanatos raised his hand silencing Owen.
"Do as I say." He said flatly. Owen reached over and pulled a switch. Part of the field came down and Thanatos slowly stepped in. Once inside Owen raised it again.
Thanatos stood over Davon who was still kneeling on the ground.
"What's happened to me?" Davon said looking up to him.
"Don't you remember?" Thanatos responded. Davon shook his head no. A smile crept onto Thanatos's face. This was too good to be true. He reached out his hand and helped Davon to his feet. "You're part of the Human Enhancement Project. You volunteered for this. Memory loss is one of the side effects."
"You mean, I willing had this done to me?" Davon said with disbelife.
"That's right. We're only half way through. We want to keep you here for observation before we proceed any further. Just relax and you'll be taken care of." Thanatos said as he began to walk towards the barrier. Owen lowered it and Thanatos stepped out.
"Wait!" Davon yelled. "Who are you? What's my name? And where am I?"
"Your questions will be answered in time, right now you need to rest." Thanatos said turning his back on him. He drew close to Owen who whispered to him.
"Sir, you can't actually believe him. He's faking his memory loss."
"No Owen, he is not. This is a great opportunity. Do NOT tell him anything. We need to keep him in the dark. With that Thanatos made his exit.
Owen turned sneering and walked back towards Davon. The strange hybrid form watched the scientist closely as he approached. Davon was amazed at what he saw. Owen was a tall thin man. He wore a light blue shirt, tan pants and a dark blue tie. He had thin rectangular glasses and corn silk blonde hair. It was the hair that had Davon mezmerises. Owen had fire, real fire, flickering through his hair, but it was contained for on his head he wore a helmet. It was a clear domed helmet that was clearly meant to keep his fire in. On the back of it were two hoses that attached to twin tanks on his back.
"Amazing." Davon whispered but loud enough for it to be heard. "Are you one of the completed experiments? Are you like me?"
The fire blazed in Owen's eyes. How dare he ask him that when he knew the answer well enough.
"I am nothing like you! You can't fool me like you have Thanatos. I will not play your games."
"Wait. Don't go." Davon said, but it was in vain. Owen was already working on other projects in the room.
A beeping sound went off from one of the computers drawing Owen's attention. He ran over and looked at the screen. The system was over heating. He looked up at the wall that suddenly exploded into flames. Owen jumped back shocked by the initial explosion but not by the fire. Davon watched as Owen lifted his hand and with an annoyed look willed the flames to go out. Davon was amazed how Owen commanded them. He walked over and checked on the gaping hole that had been left, adjusted his lab coat then went back to work. What Owen and Davon hadn't noticed was the damage the fire had caused. There was a huge watermain running behind the wall and it burst from the intense heat. Fire Owen could handle, but he was not prepared for his as the torent rushed in and slammed him against the back wall. The water began to rise quickly and it didn't take long for Owen to pass out. Soon it reached over to the containment field that held Davon and shorted it out. It didn't take him long to realize what had happened and that Owen was in trouble.
Davon rushed over, hoisted the scientist onto his shoulder and frantically looked for a way out. The door had been blocked by furniture. There was no way out except for a window near the ceiling. Davon stood on whatever he could find and made his way up. He had to break through the glass but at last managed to land outside in front of an armed guard. He did not know what went on in the top secret lab, but seeing a monster running off with the head scientist of Thanatos Industries is all he needed to know.
"Stop right there!" He ordered pulling his gun on Davon. They hybrid's eyes went wide and he leaped out of the way as the guard opened fire. He was being hunted now. He did not know where to go but he had to get him and this man to safety. He was like him and he had answers. Seeing the wall ahead of him Davon ran as fast as he could and cleared it easily.
He didn't know how long he had been on the run but it was getting late. He finally stopped under a suspension bridge that passed over a river. He set Owen down on one of the support beams and began shaking him trying to revive him.
"Hey there. Wake up. Come on, you can't be hurt. I need your help." Owen slowly opened his icy blue eyes after a moment. They focused and realized that it was Davon that had him. Davon had him!! He must have escaped somehow and now he had him all alone. He paniced.
"AAAHH!! No let me go!!" Owen screamed. He knew he was powerless against him and now the demon would kill him and take back his fire.
"Stop struggling." Davon said trying to calm him. "I'm not going to hu..."
"Stop it!! No don't touch me you filthy beast!!" Owen yelled. He couldn't think straight. The fear just gripped him like an icy hand and in response to it his fire acted of its own accord. His fire burst from him in a circular wave all around. It struck Davon and tore him off of him. He fell face down several feet away. Owen remained leaning on the wall. He was hyperventalating now. Surely he would get it for that. It had just happened. He hadn't meant to do it. He waited but nothing happened. Calming down a little he pushed himself off the beam and cautiously walked over to the fallen demon. He reached down and turned him over as much as those spines would allow. Blood trickled down Davon's temple.
Owen gasped. He HAD been telling the truth. Thanatos was right! The devil had somehow become mortal. He could kill him right here. There was no question that is what he had to do. Owen reached into his coat and drew his sword. He pulled it up over his head with both hands and stood ready to impale his victim.
Nov 24 2005
Three Days Earlier
Solan Rah walked through the office. He checked on everyone's progress and stopped into each cubicle. As Vice President of Flare Enterprise one of his duties was top manager and he enjoyed overseeing all the work that was done. Some days he was easier to work with than others. His disposition was pleasant until deadlines began to draw near. Then he changed and would become very demanding of everyone. Still despite being a slave driver at those times all the employees would say they'd rather have Solan looking over their shoulders than the big boss himself.
Solan was a fairly tall man almost as tall as Davon. He preferred to wear earth tones. His suit was the usual dark brown coat and pants. Beneath the coat he wore a dark, yellow long sleeve button up and a light brown vest over that. His tie was the darkest thing on him and he looked very clean cut in his get up. His face was pear shaped and he had a long thin pointed chin. His hair was dark reddish brown that went up on a point at the center of his forehead. It was a very short cut and also tapered to a V point in the back. His skin was dark like that of a man who's recently had a nice suntan, but his skin tone never lightened. He was a natural dark olive. All of Solan's features were very unique. He had a thin, long and sharp nose. His eyebrows were the same brown as his hair, thin, nicely curved and very unusual in that they had arms radiating out from their tops. But it was not these strange eyebrows that were his most striking feature. The first thing people noticed about Solan where his eyes. His eyes were a brilliant gold and seemed to glow in even the dimmest of lights. It was as if they had their own light source behind them. When asked why he had gold eyes Solan always answered the same way. He said they were contacts and that his eyes were really dark brown. He simply wore them to be different. The usual response was that he was different enough without them. The black rim around his eyes made his gold irises stand out all the more and if one had place a head dress on him he could easily pass as one of the ancient pharos. That always made him chuckle but he enjoyed it. Solan was well built too. He wasn't overly muscular but was trim and well cut.
Deadline time again. His pleasant personality vanished and he went around barking orders. Everyone was on pins and needles.
"Where is the market report on Red Line Inc?" He yelled. A young man stuck his head out timidly from his cubicle.
"I'm still working on it, Sir. You said I had until..."
"Well you don't, Mr. Scott! I want that report now! Place it on my desk in fifteen minutes!"
Solan leafed through the papers on his pad.
"What's the status of our gains with the Colombian company Petromundo? And I don't mean our cover status but true products gains." No one said a word. Solan frowned and crossed his arms. "What do I pay you people for? I want all these files and reports on my desk by the end of the day and NO LATER!" He yelled then stormed out to attend to other things.
Darkness fell and Solan found himself still working in his office. He sat behind his desk writing up numbers. The reports sat before him but he did not bother to look at them. Not right now he was too busy. Looks like he'd be putting in another long night to compensate for all of the incompetence in the office. He looked up from his paperwork when he heard the doorknob turning. The light from the hallway crept in on the floor widening as the door opened up. It was Davon.
"Mr. Flare." Solan said getting to his feet.
"Another late night, Solan? And please we've long since closed. No one is here so there's no need for formalities." He said as he stepped inside. "How was your day?" He asked as he reached for one of the reports on Solan's desk and began to flip through it. Solan sighed.
"Frustrating. It seems no one can do anything right. Time's running out and I have to make up for them all."
Davon set the file down.
"Looks to me like you're actually ahead of schedule."
"No, I'm not. It just appears that way because of..."
"I said you're ahead of schedule!" Davon repeated staring Solan straight in the eyes.
"Yes of course, Sir." Solan said lowering his gaze. Davon sighed.
"Look, you're doing a wonderful job. I have no complaints. You've done great staying on top of everything as you always do here and in our other business."
"I sometimes think our other business is much easier."
"Yes but you have to admit this is quite fun." Davon said smiling at him. Solan did not smile back. "I think I see the problem. You are not having any fun. In fact you're stressed. I've never seen you this way before. Don't forget who you really are now."
"Living like this day by day and hour by hour it is easy to forget. I think you are right. I have been under a lot of unnecessary pressure."
"Yes and because of that I want you to take a day off."
"DAY OFF? But Sir, I have so much..."
"Uh! Uh!" Davon said holding his hand up to him. "No buts. The company will not fall apart without you. You're not the only one running this ship after all. I want you to take the day off tomorrow. Go home. Go to bed and have fun on the next day. Don't think about work. Oh and don't rise with the sun either."
"WHAT? But Davon!"
"What did I just say? No buts. Do as I say. That's an order. You need it. These bodies get tired and need rest. You're long overdue for one."
"Yes, Sir. I'll try." Solan said a little uneasy.
"Good. You're day off starts now. Go home. And forget about this paper work for now."
Solan stood and grabbed his coat of the coat rack. The two parted company and Solan walked home.
Solan arrived at his apartment. He took off his coat and tie and hung them up. He stepped over to the window and looked out at the night sky. Without work he was at a loss for what he would do. Watching television was out of the question. He'd probably end up watching the stock market and that would be considered work. Instead he went into his small kitchen and began to brew some coffee. He went over to his collection of books and pulled out a military novel. When his coffee was ready he sat down with his cup to read. Time passed and after a few chapters Solan decided it was time to go to bed. If he got this day over with he could get on with the next one.
Two Days Earlier
The crack of dawn, and Solan's eyes open with the first light of the new day. He remembered Davon's words. It wasn't easy for him but he forced himself to stay down. A half-hour was all he could manage but he'd done it. He didn't get up with the sun. Somehow it just seemed wrong. He freshened up, had breakfast then headed out. The day was much too beautiful to stay indoors. As much as his job meant to him there was one thing he regretted and that was not being outdoors enough. He left his coat behind on the rack. He was trying to relax after all. Solan made his way to the city park and took a seat on one of the concrete benches alongside the artificial pond. Very few people walked about this day. The rest were probably all working. Solan spread his arms out full length over the back of the bench and enjoyed the warmth as the sun shown down on him. He smiled. Perhaps this day off thing wasn't so bad after all. He felt himself actually beginning to relax and enjoy himself. Well Davon had ordered him to have fun. In that case he would. He read the paper, got himself another cup of coffee and then took a walk through the city. He explored areas he'd never been through and enjoyed getting to know the new sights. He'd spent the day very well and as night fell again it was time for him to head home. He sat down with his book again and finished it.
The Day Before
Morning and Solan was up bright and early once again. He felt great and refreshed. Davon really knew what he was talking about. He'd really enjoyed his previous day. Perhaps he'd take more days off he thought. He knew of course he was kidding himself. He walked into Flare Enterprise and greeted all the workers in the lobby. He seemed to light up the room as he walked through. He took the elevator to the top floor and headed for the offices. He made sure everything was in order and pleased that they were he went to his own office and began to work.
Several hours later he emerged again to check on everyone. An employee walked up to him and timidly handed him a stack of papers. Solan smiled and took them.
"Thank you, Fred." He said as he thumbed through them. "Oh this is very good work."
"Thank you, Mr. Rah."
"Hum, and it's good news too. I must show this to Mr. Flare at once." Solan began to make his way down the hall when Fred came up behind him.
"Oh Sir. Mr. Flare isn't in today."
Solan turned around not believing what he'd just heard.
"What? He never told me this. Why was I not informed?" He said in a worried tone. Another employee stood and added, "Yeah. Actually he didn't come in yesterday either."
"What?" Solan said now clearly angry.
"We'd figured he'd taken the day off like you had."
"No. If he had he definitely would have informed me about it. This isn't right! Ok, all of you get back to work. I have some business I need to attend to." Solan said and quickly left the room.
He took the private elevator to Davon's office. He opened the heavy double doors exasperated and rummaged through his boss' desk. "It's not like Davon to leave me out of the loop. Something's gone wrong. Something's terribly wrong." He told himself. After moving everything around and making a mess of the desktop Solan found nothing. There was no clue, no report, no paper to indicate to him that Davon had left to do something out of the ordinary. But things clearly hadn't been touched in two days. If he hadn't come in yesterday then something had to have happened the night before or that following morning. Why had he taken the day off? He knew he shouldn't have done that! Perhaps for once he should have voice his disagreement to Davon. Here he'd been off goofing around while his master was in some grave danger. "It's all my fault. If I'd been here this wouldn't have happened. Ok, clam down and think." He said raising his hands in a stop motion. Solan picked up the phone and called Davon's home. No answer there. He called the phone in Davon's car. No response again. Things were getting worse and he was beginning to panic. He felt a cold chill come over him. What had he done? He looked up suddenly then bolted out the door. There was someone he had to meet right away.
It wasn't long before Solan found himself strolling up the long entrance to Davon's mansion. Inside was very large and spacious. The first grand room had a vaulted ceiling with baroque designs. Light came in from glass panels and lit up the place nicely. Statues were place in appropriate locations and if one didn't know better they would think they were in an art museum. The doorbell rang and Lamia Flare put her book down. It was strange since she was not expecting company today. She wore a long thin white dress. Her light brown hair was in a bun on the back of her head and curls hung loose over her ears. She was thin and very beautiful. She opened the door and found Solan standing there.
"Solan. What a pleasant surprise! What brings you by?" She asked gesturing for him to come in. He did not smile and his face was very solemn as he entered.
"I wish this were a pleasant visit but it is not. Lamia has Davon come home yet?" He asked. She looked into his gold eyes concern rushing onto her face.
"Why no. He hasn't been back since the day before yesterday. I thought he was with you. Solan, what's happened?" She asked worried. He closed his eyes and grit his teeth, pain and guilt clear on his face.
"He's missing and I only just now found out. No one knows about this so far."
"Missing? No that can't be. He must have gone somewhere."
"No. He would have told me. He always tells me. I never should have taken that day off. Lamia, what we are dealing with is very serious. You know what this means don't you?"
"I think so." She said trying to keep her voice from cracking.
"It means we can't let Hell get wind of this. I need you to go down there and make sure no suspicions have been aroused over this. If they have make them think everything is alright." He said trying to think out a plan.
"What about you? What are you going to do?" She asked him.
"I'm gonna enlist the aid of the humans. We'll search the surface and find him. Of course once I do that word will spread but you have to tell the demons that it's just a trick. He's not really missing but part of one of our plans."
"Do you think they'll believe me?"
"They'll have to! You're his wife. Why would they question that?"
"Because I'm not pure like them?"
"Lamia don't think that way. I need you to be strong right now. Thagirion chose you and who would dare question that? I just don't need them finding out. You know what would happen if they did?" She nodded. "I'm next in line. I don't want to be next in line. If that happens then I'll be served thousands of challenges which I do not need to fight. I need to spend my time looking for Davon instead."
"If it came to that you can take care of them can't you, Sorath?"
Solan paused a moment then placed his finger under Lamia's chin.
"Don't worry. I can. But I don't need it to come to that. Let's set our initial plans in motion then take it from there. I promise you I'll find him."
She nodded in agreement and the two left.
Dec 4 2005
Solan entered his office dreading what he had to do. He reached for the reciever and picked up the phone then rapidly punched a few buttons.
"Yes, Channel 6 news desk please. Hello. This is Solan Rah from Flare Enterprise. I need to make an announcement and for it to run on tonight's news. It is very important. Flare Enterprise will cover the expense. No problem." He reached for a note pad and a pen. "Yes I got that. I'll see you there then."
He hung up and then looked at his watch. No time like the present. He had to be at the news station in one hour so he may as well begin his walk over there. Upon entering he was recognized at once. A female reporter came up to him at once.
"Mr. Rah?" Solan nodded to her. "You're early."
"I know. I'd like to begin as soon as possible." He said.
He was taken into the recording room and set up for the announcement. He was given his cue and he began his speech.
"Greetings. My name is Solan Rah, Vice President of Flare Enterprise. It has been two days since our founder and president Davon Ember Flare came into his office." An image of Davon showed up beside Solan. "He has not been seen by friends or family in all that time. We have reason to believe that he is lost or has been kidnapped. I am offering a reward to anyone that can help track down the where abouts of Mr. Flare. Please it is crucial that we find him and bring him home safely to his family." Short sweet and to the point. Solan smiled slightly and was about to stand when the reporter came into the field of view.
"Mr. Rah, if I could ask you a few questions." She said.
"Do you really think this was a kidnapping? And if so do you have any suspects. I'm sure Mr. Flare has pleanty of enemies."
"That's why it stands to reason that most likely this is a kidnapping. But everything happened so quickly we do no suspect an particular group or person. That's why I have come here to ask for any help we can possibly get in the search."
"I see. Well as Vice President of the company have you considered the possibility that the worst may have happened. If so, are you prepared to take over as the new President and CEO?"
Solan sighed when she asked him that.
"Let me clear something up. This company belongs to Mr. Flare. I am determined to find him and to bring him back in good health. I am not here to take his place. I'm just keeping his seat warm until he returns. The company is not mine it is his. My number one goal at this moment is to find him and bring him back, but I can't do that alone."
"Very touching indeed." She said then made a signal to stop the recording. "Well, we'll be sure to run this tonight."
"And please, run a story in the papers as well. I want as much coverage on this as possible. Thank you so much for your help." He said then left.
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