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RPG Witches: Mankinds Hope

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali jogged down the hall, her long hair trailing behind her like a tail of brown tied at the end with a small red ribbon, her expression was hard and unreadable as she turned another corner and sprinted into the office not surprised when she nearly ran into Demetri. He was usually the first on there if not her. he grabbed her shoulders tightly to keep her up right and raised an eye brow.
"Trouble?"
"What are you doing here already?"
"I was looking over a few older files, you look like ****, what's going on?"
"We have a mission. A military base in the South was attacked last night. Do you know where Jeff and Pocket are?"
"I'm pretty sure Jeff is in his usual area and as for Pocket, your guess is as good as mine."
Cursing she turned and ran from the room only to turn back around and poke her head back in.
"Call them on their cells. I'm gonna go look."
He gave her a nod and shook his head as she sprinted from the room, she worked to hard sometimes. Ali raced through the halls and frowned as her phone went off, flipping it open she pressed it to her ear and rolled her eyes as she heard the music and sounds of a game on the other end.
"Ali! I just beat the new game I got last week you should swing by and see it."
"Pocket we don't have time for that! Get to the office on the double, we have a mission."
"You got it."
Flipping the phone shut she slid into a small room, no noise was heard and the lights were off.
"Jeff, you in here?"
There was no answer only the sound of movement, reaching out with her powers she did indeed feel his presence and sighed.
"Get to the office, we have a mission. We're heading South."
The only indication she received that he had heard her was when he came from the room and walked down the hall she had just come from. Nodding she followed and they entered the office together seeing Pocket and Demmy sitting at the small round table that was set up there. Walking over to the coffee pot she poured a cup and took a sip as the large screen flipped down showing an older man who had the worst receding hair line she had ever seen. His light blue eyes were watery and she was sure that there were frown lines beginning to show on his forehead.
"Good to see you all here already. You have a mission, you'll be heading to the Southern military base. They were attacked last night by some unknown hostiles that we have yet to identify. Your job is to go there, find out who or what attacked them and why. If you must engage, you are to eliminate them at all costs. God speed and good luck."
The screen went black and Ali looked at the others who sat there with different looks on their faces. She shook her head and set the white coffee mug down.
"Well you heard the man. Let's get out of here."
They nodded and headed to the small garage in the base and piled in, none of them needed to get anything, already having their weapons on their person and everything else they would need thanks to pocket they got comfortable for the few hours they had on the drive til they arrived at their current mission.[/color][/font]

Alright, we're hitting the ground running. Everyone just go off of mine and describe hearing about the mission, whether from me or the base leader and if you want to go into the ride in the van feel free. Once everyone has just about posted I'll move on. Edited by Duo

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The night was young at the headquarters of the Human Defense Force as soldiers and office personnel alike began to wrap up their work for the evening and go to their respective living quarters, Demitri stirred in his sleep that late afternoon after having a small sparring practice with the higher ranked officials. He got a nasty fire burn from Commander Snider and one hell of a bruise from Sergent Aliki. Those pains bothered the giant none, he continued to toss and turn in his sleep, sweat forming on the brow of his forehead as he huffed air like a dog would. His last solo mission did a number on him, still remembering the attack on a villa in the eastern lands, so much death and blood spilled everywhere before Demitri could act on his orders. Then...there was the woman he couldn't save...Anna.

[i][color="#2e8b57"]"Things will be o.k, keep breathing and look at me" Demitri held the young woman tight in his arms keeping pressure on her claw marks, there was a massive hunt out tonight, hunt for human lives. The werewolf pack the Demitri was tracking attacked out of nowhere, and the end result...a mission failure. The young girl's heart continued to pump blood and her lungs exhausted from working so much to keep her alive, but it was a fate she could not escape from.

"Please...please...I don't want to die..." She cried silently, and alas, he wish did not come true. Her body shook for a moment as Demitri looked down upon her...she stopped. Nothing was left but her silent breath. Her body went limp and cold against Demitri's strong and warm body.

"I'm sorry..." Demitri lowered his head as he placed his hand upon her face. Swiping it downward to close her eyes, no more screams were heard in the villa that evening. The pack had left with their spoils and left their mark.

[/color][/i][color="#2e8b57"][color="#000000"]The muscular soldier finally opened his eyes to see his alarm clock at the side table of his bed, blinking a couple of times to get his vision set he noticed it was about to turn 8 in the evening. Sitting up in his bed the giant looked down at his hands, scarred with some scratched and cuts from previous missions, he remembers the one from that night. A small gash now healed on his right ring finger from the claw of a now deceased wolf. Shaking his head and ruffing his hair some, Demitri decided to shower before going on his shift. Still a little sore from today's earlier activities, he had hoped that tonight would be an easy night for him, just stay on duty as hope things are smooth. After his shower the soldier dressed in his uniform fully equip with his weapons and spare ammo.

"There is something I wanna look at though before I go on shift..." Dimitri left his room and walked down the corridor, passing by his co workers and fellow soldiers alike as he gave a friendly smile and made some small chit chat with them as well. Demitri made it into the office and began to look at the case file from his last mission, something seemed amiss at the formation of the wolves that attacked the villa. But the soldier couldn't put his finger on it to save his life, the the autopsy photo of Ana came in sight. She looked so peaceful. Demitri brushed it off as he closed the folder and placed it back in the shelf, the door opened behind him quickly as he turned and almost got trampled by the running figure. Placing his hands on it's shoulders Demitri looked down at the person. It was Ali, a member of his squad. [/color][/color]

[color="#000000"]"Trouble?" He asked, he knew she was one for little chit chat, she was more direct and to the point. A bit sad at times Demitri thought, but she was work orientated. He had to give her that.

"What are you doing here already?" She asked as Demitri let her go.

"I was looking at some old files" Demitri looked closer at his team mate in the light. "....you look like ****, whats going on?"

"We have a mission. A military base in the South was attacked last night. Do you know where Jeff and Pocket are?"

"I'm pretty sure Jeff is in his usual area and as for Pocket, your guess is as good as mine" The man scratched the side of his head, parting his long hair some to reach the spot. Ali left in a huff and was told to call the others on their mobiles. "Yeah yeah, bark to you too" Demitri brushed off her attitude and tried to call Pocket, but no answer for her phone. When he tried to contact Jeff, he answered, then hung up. After a while it was Pocket who came into the office and sat down next to Demitri.

"I hear we have a mission, haven't had one in a while" Pocket said as she reclined in her chair for some comfort.

"Speak for yourself" Demitri laughed some as he made a fresh pot of coffee, after sitting down at his chair again they were met with Ali and Jeff. Their breifing on the mission was short but to the point, go to the base and investigate everything on the attack they just had. The casualty count was higher than anyone could have figured in their head, once the information was given the group went to their vehicle. Demitri got into the driver's seat and buckled in, Ali in the passenger seat, Pocket and Jeff in back of the van.

"Let's move out" Ali buckled herself in staring forward the whole time, Demitri let on the gas and they were on the way to the southern military base.
[/color]

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Jeff awoke that morning at his usual time, around 6:30 am. He went to the kitchen before any of the others got there, right on time, and had a small bowl of cereal. After making sure he'd cleaned all traces of his presence there, Jeff headed off toward his dark room. A commissioned room he had personally requested be added to their base of operations a few months ago. The room had no lights installed, and was essentially just a large empty space. Jeff had filled it with different objects throughout the last months. Nothing much, just a few wooden boxes, some metal bars, a wing chun dummy for martial arts practice. He spent 90% of his free time alone in the room, using his powers to move around the objects or himself, constant practice. Jeff was truly a perfectionist when it came to things he had so much access to, like his body and powers. He would spend 16 hours a day training or meditating. Coming out at unusual times to catch the kitchen when no one else was their.

His schedule hadn't changed by the time Ali had come looking for him for the mission. He knew she was coming before she arrived, having answered and promptly hung up his cell a few moments before. He despised his phone, agreeing to even have one took an hour of convincing and even then he agreed only for the sake of emergency situations, not common calls.

Ali knocked on the door, but Jeff was focusing as hard he could to slowly lift one of the boxes in the room 10 feet away without hurling it at the wall or himself. He slowly moved it toward himself, fortunately getting it within his five foot zone of control before the door opened and Ali entered, breaking his concentration.
"Jeff you in here?" she called out. Jeff didn't answer, figuring his recent schedule along with her sensory powers would answer the question for him. Which proved true a moment later when she sighed and said "Get to the office, we have a mission. We're heading south." and left. Jeff took a moment to walk around and move some boxes back into their proper places before heading out. Passing Ali in the hall, he walked by her and toward the office, feeling no need for small talk.

They entered the office together a short time later, seeing Demmy and Pocket had already gotten there Jeff took his place at the round table as far from anyone as possible. Ali flipped down the screen, and they recieved their mission. It was a short briefing, but unless there was some special information about the targets or victims, they usually were. After getting the information about the mission they all headed off and piled into the van. The gang traveled with their weapons ready at all times, so there was no need to go fetch them, the same went for Jeff, after buckling himself in he took out a small pair of fingerless gloves and slid them on, steeling himself for the mission ahead.

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Calypso, or 'Pocket' as everyone calls her, some have even forgotten her real name, was sitting in her private quarters fighting boredom and winning. She had found a fighting game last week that by a strange coincedence had her nickname in the title. She had to pick it up and give it a try. After some practice at it on slow days, when she couldn't get any real training in, she finally won. In the middle of the victory music, Pocket had to tell someone. She dialed Ali's cell and got an answer.

[b]"Ali! I just beat the new game I got last week you should swing by and see it."[/b] She said happily.
[b]"Pocket we don't have time for that! Get to the office on the double, we have a mission."[/b] Ali said, quite seriously as usual but a bit annoyed too.
Pocket pouted, even though the conversation took place over the phone. [b]"You got it."[/b] She answered before hanging up. Ali was serious.

Pocket took her time finishing up her game and got dressed for the mission. She brought anything that was personal but important in her mind. It was a way for her to keep in practice, too. After tying her boots, she headed to the briefing room happily humming to herself.

She reached the briefing room to see that Demitri was already there. She wasn't as close to Demitri as she was to Ali, but the way Jeff was, he was the second person that she could talk to.

[b]"I hear we have a mission, haven't had one in a while"[/b] She said, trying to break the silence.
[b]"Speak for yourself"[/b] Demitri replied, laughing as he made some coffee. It was good to get a laugh out of him at least. Before Pocket could say anything else though, everyone else arrived and the briefing started.

After getting into the van, Pocket hoped that she would get the backseat with Ali. No such luck though, she was stuck with Jeff. She had had bad experiences talking to him in the past, but maybe this was a chance to get some sort of conversation going. Or get him to laugh at least. Pocket smiled as she got an idea.
[b]"So, since it's a long trip, is there anything that you want Jeff? Coloring book? Snacks? Mystery novels? Road Bingo?"[/b] Pocket continued, naming more items as they each appeared out of nowhere.
Ali looked back at Pocket. [b]"Pocket stop that and get rid of all of that junk. I told you before to keep room for important things only."[/b]
Pocket just pouted and put everything somewhere in the van. Everyone was serious so she would have to be too. Talking to Jeff would have to come later.

[b]OOC: Okay, sorry for the wait. I hope I handled Ali okay, KG.[/b]

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"][b]Great first posts everyone, lets get to the good stuff![/b]

Ali leaned her head against the window and gritted her teeth as Demmy took a sharp turn making the van pitch to the side.
"You know, I realize we don't have to worry about getting pulled over due to the radar jammer that was put into the van, but I really don't feel like getting pulled over for anything. We're almost there anyway. Slow down before you make us roll."
Demetri gave a smirk and looked her way making her frown slightly.
"I'm serious Demetri."
"Demmy."
"Demetri."
"Why is that you call Calypso by her nick name but not me?"
"Cause personally I think your real name is better than your nickname."
It was about as close to a compliment as they would ever get from her and he took it in stride.
"Well thank you. I think?"
She began to check her equipment as the base came into view and was pleased to see the rest doing the same, extending her power she could feel Pocket's dampered enthusiasim and Jeff's usual 'nothingness' as she called it. Switching off the radio she turned around and looked at the two in the back.
"Be ready for anything, we have no idea what we're going into so watch each others backs and be alert."
Giving confirmation signals she turned and frowned as they rolled through the gate without being stopped by any guards. Her frown deepened as they continued through the small base not seeing any movement or activity at all, she made sure her throwing daggers were easy to get to and began to let her eyes skim the area as the sun began to drop below the horizon. Looking back at Jeff and Pocket she saw them doing much the same and let a deep calm fill the van helping them to be more alert but it was short lived as Jeff yanked the wheel to the right and letting out a curse. Ali had her door open and was jumping out before the van came to a halt, the others doing much the same. Pocket was in behind them as Jeff and Demetri positioned themselves on her left and right, all poised and ready for anything.
"What the hell did you hit?
"I'm not sure, what ever it was shattered the windshield and buckled in the hood of the van, but it rolled off so fast I couldn't get a good look at it."
She tightened her toes in her boot getting ready for a fight if it came to that, her daggers ready and gleaming in her hands.
"Pocket, light some flares, we won't be much good if we can't see our own hands in front of our face."
Within moments the area around them came to life in the red glow of the flares and Ali squinted as she began to see movement around them, reaching out with her powers she took a step back momentairly stunned by the lack of emotion she felt. The others looked at her shocked to see her so out of character. Demetri stepped forward and put a hand on her shoulder.
"Ali? What is it?"
"I-I don't know. I can't feel anything. I can usually feel something from our enemies, no matter what they are...but this time, it's just...blank."
"Any idea what they are?"
"I don't know, keep a sharp eye though, what ever it is, it's close."
The others barely had time to nod before a pale creature launched it self at Pocket, spinning around in an instant Ali brought her foot across and caught whatever it was in the ribs and sent it a good 2 feet away from them, as a whole they walked cautiously towards it and Pocket gasped as the monster came into view. The military uniform let them know that whatever it was had once been personnel at the base, but something was wrong. The man was thin, almost nothing but skin and ones, his skin was a sickly pale, whiter than snow and seemed to give off the odor of sour milk, his eyes were solid black and his nails and gums seemed to have black veins spiderwebed through them. Ali covered her nose as the smell got worse.
"What the hell is this thing?"
Hearing her head set beep she put her finger on it and answered.
"Ali."
"They're skeletals. Be careful that no one gets bitten, you'll turn into one. They best way to kill them is to find their creator. Kill him you kill them all."
"They sound like vampires."
"Close but worse. They have no humanity left. All they do is stand there unless the creator gives them an order and they do it with out stopping. They feel no pain, no hunger or sleep. They just are. Watch your backs and keep your formation tight."
They line went dead and Ali heaved a sigh.
"You all get that?"
The nodded and got ready.
"Alright, here's our objective, find the creator and eliminate him or her and end this. Clean up will be here precisely at 0800 so we have to be out of here by then, if not, well you get the idea."
Gaining another collective nods she put her daggers away and drew her rapier and began to move forward slowly, a flare glowing in her hand much like one was in the hands of the others moving into the base they stopped as something moved in front of them, throwing the flare in front of her she let out a small gasp as a wall of Skeletals shuffled back and forth in front of them. Back up slowly she settled a calm around them as the all got shoulder to shoulder and readied themselves. It was Jeff that moved first as one of the sickly creatures lunged at him, it's headed seeming to be to heavy for it's body and smashing into the ground to flatten, it's black blood and green organs covering the tile floor below their feet and as if on cue the rest of the deathly mob lurched forward attacking them as well. Throwing her left leg out she heard the satisfying crunch of it's jaw under her boot and pulled her leg back in time before another grabbed her ankle. Sticking to her rapier from then on she stayed close to the others as they fought through the horde of monster beings.
[/color][/font]

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Demitri maneuvered himself from getting tackled by these creatures as the group stayed tight together, getting bitten and turning into one of these monsters wasn't appealing what so ever. Looking over his shoulder, the muscular soldier could see his team mate Jeff delivering a critical Meia Lua kick to one of the former personnel, with deadly aim at that. Pocket remained close to Ali and stayed close behind as their team leader defended the two with her weapon and skill.

"I've only read dossiers on these creatures" Demitri shouted as more shuffled their way to the groups current spot, Demitri gathered a gust of wind to collect in his right palm forming a visible ball constantly twirling in his grasp. He extended his arm to release his attack on the closest target, like a gunfire, it shot quickly through the air knocking one of the Skeletals to the wall at the other end of the corridor. "But seeing them in person now....well, that's a different story". Demitri shot another wind blast towards Jeff's direction, covering his back from being grabbed by a creature in the shadows. Without warning, one came up from behind Demmy and grabbed onto his beck roughly, tugging the giant and the creature to the closest wall. Demitri gasped and chocked as the skeletal's surprisingly tight grip blocked his airway, the creature was about to take a bite from Demmy's neck until a hand blocked the attack. Jeff quickly went over to Demitri's aide as he lept into the air and connected his foot to the skeletal's skull, sending the creature flying off of Demitri's shoulder. Demitri gasped for air when he fell to his knee as Jeff covered him.

"Stay sharp Demitri, we can't afford mistakes" Ali roared as she continued her assault followed by Pocked backing her up with her Barret Rifle, the loud pops from her gun echoed in the corridor.

"No ****, but hey, I'm fine." Demitri finally got up and assisted once again in defending the formation. Finally it was Pocket who took down the last skeletal in the area, the group caught their breaths for a moment's rest as they scanned the area.

"It's still dark, we should find the nearest room and try to plan from there. Wouldn't ya say?" She looked over to Ali, the idea had crossed her mind as well. But if all the personnel were turned into Skeletals, there would be no assurance that a survivor was left to explain what had happened in the first place. Jeff folded his arms and sighed as Demmy began to rub the side of his neck from where he was grabbed.

"Alright, break's over" Ali broke the silence as she continued to move further down the corridor, the group followed close by. For a small military base, it sure seemed a lot bigger on the inside, lots of turns and stairs to different directions. For a while, Ali was getting annoyed that the rooms they tried to enter had been locked, must have been from the original raid and the emergency back-up power must have failed. The further they went into the base, the harder it seemed to keep in communication with HQ, something was happening to their signal from all ends. Finally, the group came to a door that read "Control center", the steel door was slightly open by a crack. Ali tried to budge the rest of the entrance open, but to no avail.

"Move over princess, I got this" Ali shot an evil glare towards Demmy, but she brushed it off as she moved aside. Demitri cracked his knuckled as he gripped tight on the door's edge. Looking back over his shoulder he saw Jeff. "Lend me a hand bud". But no answer, but he knew that was an answer itself. Getting himself in a solid stance Demmy started to use all his strength to pull the door open, slowly the rusted steel door moved little by little, when it got halfway open Jeff used his powers to move the rest of the door to it's opening sheath. The group looked inside and saw that the room was fully illuminated by lights and computers...but also, they could see there was a bloodshed inside the control center as well. Just no bodies left to tell the tale. They entered still on high alert for whatever they may face.

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[b][font="Century Gothic"][color="#8b0000"]I realized I might not have put this in originally but this will be a mature RP. Okay, now that that's out of the way back to work. lol[/color][/font][/b]


[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali turned to Pocket and whispered to her quietly.
"How many pistols do you have in your mind?"
"Enough for all of us but why?"
"Give us each one, I don't want to take a chance on one of us getting grabbed again. We need to stick to long range."
Complying Pocket produced 4 pistols which Ali took and handed out, Demetri took his without argument but when it came to Jeff he gave a her a look and turned his head away clearly refusing the weapon.
"Jeff, I'm not asking you. I'm telling you to take the damn pistol and use it. I don't want any of us getting that close to those things again."
He took the weapon silently but the look on his face clearly said that he didn't like the idea. Checking the ammo and making sure the safety was off she took point and moved slowly inside looking this way and that. reaching out with her powers she felt a feeling of panic wash over her and took an uncharacteristic step back, her eyes widening and her breathing speeding up. It wasn't til Demetri put a hand on her shoulder did she pull her power back and relax.
"Under the main power grid desk, there's someone there. Pocket, Jeff, check it out. Demetri, you keep an eye out, I'm going to see if I can feel anyone else."
The team divided silently, though still within eyesight of each other Ali closed her eyes and let her powers leak from her own body as she felt around the room, this time ready for the feeling of panic that she was already aware of. Nothing. Sighing she looked up at Demetri and shook her head.
"Nothing. Just the one person, who ever it is."
Almost as if on cue Jeff and Pocket brought a pale young man towards them, his eyes were wide and full of panic as he looked from one of them to the next, his breathing was rapid and shallow. His skin had a fine sheen of sweat on it and from the odor coming off of him she could tell he had lost control of his bowels. Great. Trying her best to breath through her mouth she let a feeling of calm wash over the man and almost instantly his breathing slowed, his eyes didn't seem so wide and his shaking stopped. Looking up at them he blinked several times before standing on his own and covering his mouth, Ali and Demetri had a split second to step back as he vomited onto the blood stained tile and took a shuddering breath.
"W-what were those things? I've never seen anything like them in all my life...what-what happened to the others?"
"Don't worry about all that right now. You need to tell us what happened? But before that. Pocket, Demetri, take watch. Make sure no one or thing sneaks up on us while we figure out what happened here."
The nodded and began to look through the shattered glass windows on the opposite side and doors leading out of the room. Kneeling down she put a hand on the man's dirty uniform and looked him in the eye.
"I need you to tell me exactly what happened here. And don't lie to me, I'll know."
"W-we were doing diagnostics on the system, all security cameras were down and the alarms had been shut off for the period of the test. It was all going as planned til we were 5 minutes away from reinstating all the systems. It happened so fast...there were these things...they looked like the zombies you see on horror movies or something...my friend tried to fight them off but they kept coming...one...one bit him and he fell to the floor...it looked like he was having a seizure or something. He was foaming at the mouth and there were these black lines spreading across his skin from where the thing had bitten him. It took close to 30 seconds after that thing bit him and he stood up with this dead look in his eyes...he-he came at me and tried to bit me but I got out in time and shut the door on him...."
"Were there others in the room with you?"
He looked down and Ali bit the inside of her cheek to keep from giving the young man a good tongue lashing.
"So you left your other friends in here with him while he was like that?"
"Y-Yes...I never thought it would end up like this..."
"Well guess what. It did and now the entire base is nothing but what your friend turned into."
"Ali."
She looked up at Demetri, her name having been spoken as a warning, letting out an explosive sigh she looked back at the young man and closed her eyes praying whatever god above for patience.
"What happened next? How did you make it out alive?"
"A-Alive? You mean those things are dead?
"As good as, now answer the question."
"I ran to the lock room at the bottom of the base. It's a safe room in case of an emergency. I stayed there til the screams stopped and than by some grace of god made it back here to send out a destress signal."
"We got the message while the Sargent was still in here, we could hear him over the radio relay."
"I-I see...they must have gotten here after I ran...I just got back up here when I heard a gun go off so I hid."
Ali looked back at Demetri, the noise he must have heard was most likely his wind blast, often to be mistaken as a gun.
"Alright, here's the deal, we'll get you out of here, but you have to stay close and do what ever we tell you to do. Can you handle that?"
"Y-Yes, I think so..."
Ali stood and turned around facing her team she pinched the bridge of her nose and took a deep breath.
"Alright, this has now become a rescue mission. We're to locate any survivors and escort them out. Once clean up gets here there'll be nothing left of this place."
They all nodded and moved ahead of her scanning the halls as they exited the control room, following them out Ali froze on the spot as her powers receded back to her without her calling them, the calm on the room vanishing instanly. The hair on the back of her neck stood on end and her arms broke into goose bumps. Spinning around she glanced at the young man who stood erect, his shoulders squared and a menacing smirk on his face. His voice came out as a deep growl as he moved. Ali was taken aback at his speed and in the time it took her to blink he was in front of her, he wrenched the gun from her hand and snaked his arm around her neck, the feeling of the cold barrel against her temple.
"Well now. This is the infamous HDF? Interesting indeed."
"Who the hell are you?"
"Just a fan."
Ali looked up as the others aimed their guns at him, but they were unable to take a shot with him holding her in front of him, she locked eyes with Jeff, the most cold and calculating of the group.
"Take the shot."
He held still.
"Jeff, take the damn shot!"
Demetri shook his head and lowered his gun, the others doing the same, the young man chuckled and ran his tongue along her neck to her jaw.
"My my, your so sweet. What's say we take this to a more private location."
Holding her tight he leapt into the rafters and was gone, Ali along with him, her powers no longer keeping the easy calm on the others as tears began to gather in Pockets eyes.[/color][/font]

[b][font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#8b0000"]Your on your own for a little bit guys. Have fun![/color][/font][/b]

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OOC: Guess I'll start the separation going for the story to develop.

Pocket bursts of emotion was more than enough to send her off edge as she tried to make a futile effort to help her best friend, but it was Jeff that grabbed her arm and pulled her back to the small group. Demitri tried to follow the wind shift of the assailant and Ali as they vanished, but the trailed disappeared once they were too far to see anymore.

"ALI!!" Pocket screamed, her echo radiated through the control center and back down the corridor whence they came from prior, some rustling could be heard down the hall, more of the skeletals probably showed up from the shadows. Jeff was quick on his feet to use his powers to shut the steel door, trapping them inside the control center. Yet their security was not important, it was the fear they had for their team mate.

"Damn..." Demitri shouted as he slammed his fist on the control console, he made a small dent onto the metal work place as his fist shook in its place. His veins appeared as he tensed his muscles, he was shaking slightly on the inside. "What was that guy? How did he know about us?...was this a trap all along?" Demitri paced back and forth trying to think about the whole operation in his head and the actions they took. He had thought it was a routine mission up to this point, now this. Ali was not a force to be messed with on her own, but that guy completely negated her abilities....were they under the same effect as well? Or was it just her?

"What are we gonna do..." Before Pocket could finish there was a barrage of banging and screaming coming from the steel door, their enemy had come fast and their surprising strength was enough to prove they were a force to be fearful of, deadly at that. The door held its place, but the team knew it wouldn't be for long. Jeff quickly moved some chairs and made a small blockade to buy them some time in case the door were to burst open. "We have to get out of here and find Ali" Pocket wiped the tears from her face and looked around, like the others, to find a way out. Demitri looked at the ground, he could see a small gust of wind coming from the crack of the floor where the radio power station was.

"Over there" Dashed the muscular soldier as he dropped to his knees at the spot and inspected the tile flooring, there was an escape passage that lead downward out of the control room. Lifting up some of the tile Demitri found the hatch and opened it, inside was still a blood trail when the lights came on, could some of the soldiers have made it out before that man appeared? "You two, get going, your abilities are a perfect match to keep one another alive long enough to either find Ali or escape before the clean up crew gets to this location". Both Jeff and Pocket looked at Demitri as he walked away from the hatch and stood in front of the steel door. More banging and screams came onto the group.

"Are you nuts?? We have to stay together and find Ali as a team" Pocket shouted over the loud assault on the door, Jeff looked at Demitri like he was a fool, but his facial expression was the same as Pocket's remark.

"I'll cover before joining you two, we need to make sure there are none of these Skeletals following us. I'll hit you up on the communicators when I'm through, but right now your priority is to find Ali and assist her. We work as a group, so that means someone will have your backs. That's an order" Demitri tossed back the pistol Pocket had given him before. He patted his own pistols he carried on his leg holders and hips. "Mine work better anyways". There was a loud crashing sound as a hand came through the steel door, followed by another and another at different spots. Jeff looked at the door and back at the emergency exit before he grabbed onto Pocket's arm and forcefully brought her along with him.

"Demmy you can't" The young girl persisted to resist, but Jeff was not having any of it as they got closer to the exit.

"THAT'S AN ORDER POCKET!" Demitri shouted, just then the steel door came crashing down and the skeletals made their way inside, Jeff picked up Pocket in his arms and both jumped down simultaneously. With a flick of his wrist, Demitri shut the hatch with a slight gust of wind, he then charged up a couple of wind balls in his hand and launched them at his targets. One by one they flew to the wall or back to the corridor from whence they came, but it was not enough. Before one could grab Demitri, the soldier did a barrel roll to his right and extending his arm, pushing back his assailant with a strong gust of wind, sending shards of metal to his body that went through and through. Grabbing his two pistols from his hip Demitri fired his clips into the rest of the Skeletals that were standing until none was left walking.

*click click* Was the last sound in the room to be made, Demitri unloaded his empty magazine in both guns and reloaded them as quickly as possible. There was only one shuffling noise that came through the dark passage, it was small yet noticable, the figure finally made it's way to the door of the well lit control room. Demitri looked up with his gun aimed directly at the head of the long raven haired figure...but his blood froze in its place once the figure lifted with its cold milky eyes.

"...Anna..." Demitri whispered as he lowered his gun, a rookie mistake. "But you're....you're dead..." Examining the figure more as she made her way closer towards Demitri, her skin was zombie like yet it wasn't ripping or shedding, only the marks of the wolf attack lingered, she said nothing. Stopping a few feet away in front of the tall giant, the creature opened its mouth and let out an ear-piercing screech, the echo broke glass and rumbled the bodies of the skeletals, Demitri covered his ears but was still yelling as he felt the numbing cries through his whole body. The creature continued to scream until a sonic boom like wave projected itself towards Demitri, sending his body towards the wall hard as he bounded and landed face first on the tile floor. "DAMMIT, YOU'RE A SIREN" The scream continued as Demitri struggled to get up, he could hear some talking on his communication ear piece, but he couldn't make out what was being said. Thinking fast, Demmy created a wind barrier that fought with the sirens sonic boom attack. He was granted a moments rest from the noise, but not the assault as he held his place shielding himself. It took more than he thought just to keep himself protected and safe from her assault, the giant coughed up some blood from the wall impact as he held his place.

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali looked up into the young man's face, her scowl deep as she studied him. He didn't look like a monster, but she could tell there was something different about him. He chuckled as he noticed her hard stare and shook his head.
"You can stop trying to figure me out girl. You won't be able to."
"Alright, than what's your angle? Why get rid of us like this?"
"It's fun. Nothing more to it."
"So are you the master of these monsters?"
"Wouldn't you like to know?"
The man snapped his fingers and Ali felt her stomach drop out, Demetri showed on the screen, couching up blood facing a woman he seemed to know.
"What are you doing to him?"
"Nothing he can't handle. You see this woman was someone he was supposed to save and failed in doing so. She seems pretty focused on getting revenge don't you think?"
"Demetri did all he could! He's a good man who does his best at everything."
"Let's see if he can do that well when it comes to dying, shall we?"
"Keep your minions away from him!"
Ali felt her face grow pale as the man looked at her in a new light.
"You care for this man...don't you? I see now, yes. Well than, shall we give you a front row seat to his death?"
"Leave him alone!"
Ali let out a low growl and struggled against the bonds that had her tied her hands together as he flipped a switch.
"Attention, all skeletals move towards the main control room, eliminate the man there and move on to find the other. Kill them all."
"You bastard!"
Ali stood and brought her hands down to her ankles and jumped over them easily, charging the young man she swung her left foot forward and caught him in the ribs, hearing him grunt and the wonderful sound of his ribs cracking she ran to the intercom and yelled into it.
"Demetri, get the hell out of there! Now! Follow the others and get out of here. This is an order!"
She grunted as the man tackled her from the right and threw her to the ground.
"Stupid *****. You just made it worse for them. I'll kill them all, slowly. Maybe turn that man into one of them and let you have the pleasure of killing him, how does that sound?"
"Up yours!"
Cackleing the man flipped the intercom back off and turned on her, getting to her feet she charged him again and dropped down taking his feet out from under him she kicked him hard in the face knocking him out. Jumping to her feet she kicking the control desk that was there and sighed when the door hissed open. Reaching out with her power she felt pain radiating from a room down the hall.
"There's no way I could be that lucky..."
Sprinting as fast as she could she looked at the door and felt her spirits drop, the door was in shambles and she could hear the sound of a struggle from inside, pushing her way through she saw Demetri go down from another blast of the woman's voice.
"Siren...just great."
She ran into the room and brought her right foot down in a powerful axe kick and than swung around with her left foot knocking the woman away by a few feet. She rushed over to Demetri and dropped to her knees.
"Demetri, are you alright?"
"Alex? How'd you get away?"
"Wasn't easy, where are Jeff and Pocket?"
"I sent them to find you."
"Right, get up, we have to get out of here, we're running out of time."
Putting her shoulder against his she helped him to his feet and pushed him towards to the small hole he had sent Jeff and Pocket through.
"Move it."
"But Anna..."
"Forget it Demetri! Move your ass or I will kick it the whole way back to HQ! We're out of time, the clean up will be here in 20 minutes!"
That seemed to register as he turned and flung himself down the escape tunnel, Ali close behind him. Reaching the bottom she reached out with her powers and sighed.
"They aren't that far ahead of us, go to your right and keep running."
"Got it."
"First thing...Demetri, could you get these things off my wrists?"
He looked at her hands and nodded, slicing them off with a small burst of wind she sighed as blood began to circulate into her fingers again.
"Right, let's move."
She sprinted ahead of him as they made their way towards the others.[/color][/font] Edited by Knuckles' Girl

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Ali and Demitri ran through the small escape tunnel as fast as they could to catch up to their team mates, they only had so much time before the clean up crew were to arrive, and yet the whole mission seemed like an unorganized mess from the start. Their answers to the assault weren't answered thoroughly and yet there was the situation with that one creature that abducted Ali...he was an enigma itself. Never the less, their time was nearly up and they had to be out of there before the civilian clean up could find them, or they would be exposed. Demitri ran a little slower than usual, the pain in his body was enough to weaken a simple man, but he knew he had to push through, Ali was right in front of him as they ran through the narrow passage, it was longer than he had thought it would be.

"They can't be too far now" Ali shouted over their foot steps as she looked at her watch, ten minutes remained as their escape time seemed to slip them. "Damn, first mission failure in a long time, the commander won't be happy about this but we have no choice but to evacuate the squad." She hissed, both turning a sharp corner as they ran.

"Did you happen to get any information from the creature that held you hostage?" Demitri asked, they could hear some echoes coming from the distance, it had to be Pocket and Jeff.

"Nothing, not one shred of information that would have been useful. But I'm positive he was the leader of the skeletal army since they listened to his commands without hesitation. Then that woman...she came out of nowhere. That was unexpected." Ali grunted as she remembered the image of Demitri losing the battle against her. She suddenly stopped herself with a couple of trots of to catch her breath. Demitri almost ran into her until he grabbed hold of a pipeline and stopped himself completely, he was glad for the momentary rest as he sank to one knee to rest, still exhausted and hurt from his fight. He looked up for a moment and was going to say something, but was met with a hard slap to his face, sending his head to the left. Demitri shook his head and stood back up looking down at Ali, who had a stern look on her face.

"What was that for?" Dumbfounded, Demitri grunted a bit in anger.

"You were sloppy, never have I seen you been taken so easily by a low class threat. What's wrong with you?" Ali scolded.

"That's none of your concern, I had the situation handled. I'm appreciative of your assistance, was just caught off guard." The man rubbed his cheek quickly, trying to make the sting go away from his flushed face.

"Don't let something from the past hesitate your actions Demitri, we can't afford to lose someone like you and especially not on my watch. Now come on...we..." She stayed silent, something evil and dark was coming towards them fast, but she didn't know from which direction. Demitri saw the hesitation in her voice, he knew to be on high alert. "It's coming closer" She whispered using her powers to feel around the two. Simultaneously, both began to sprint away from their spot towards the others, after making a couple more turns they could see Pocket and Jeff finishing off another group of Skeletals, Pocket reloading her ammunition while Jeff cracking his knuckles together, Pocket looked over to her right and saw the two, and was more than happy to seem Ali safe and alive.

"Ali!!" She screamed and gave her friend a hug when they regrouped, Jeff said nothing, but crossed his arms together at his chest and sighed slightly.

"We're fine Pocket, but we need to get moving, now!" No one missed a beat as they once again began to run the rest of the way to the nearest exit, finally, they came upon a steel door that was already opened. Must have been from the survivors that made it out and left the base. The group made it out as the sun was about to rise, the light blue sky was still dark, but the orange shine began to rise from the horizon. "We need an evac. ASAP, let's get some distance between us and the base" The group began to jog to the nearest trees to call for help, there was some slight rumbling that came from their backs, then it became stronger until the steel door from where they escaped from burst open with a large creature roaring at the top of its lungs. Skeletals followed close behind along with Anna, the siren woman. The group looked back as the massive 16 foot monster began to spring towards their direction. Before they could all scatter, the siren Anna sent a sonic wave blast towards them, slowing their movements as they covered their ears. "POCKET, GET RID OF THAT THING" Ali screamed, the noise was more than unbearable. The massive monster was withing striking range as it rose its large claw upon the group.

"SCATTER NOW!!!" Demitri shouted as they all looked up, Jeff hugged onto Pocket and rolled the the right, demitri picked up Ali bridal style and jumped to the right, but when the monster brought his claw down onto the ground, it's longest claw cut deep into Demitri's back diagonally, shredding his uniform and breaching skin as he jumped. Both groups rolled on the ground until the dust cleared. Pocket took out her Rifel and aimed for the Siren's throat, taking a deep break and pulling the tripper, she sent her bullet right to it's targets. The woman tried to scream in pain, but that alone was impossible as she squirmed where she stood. Pocket continued her assault on the skeletals that were near the siren, Jeff used his powers to keep the large monster at bay, he wouldn't be able to hold it for long as it resisted in rage. Ali groaned a bit as she opened her eyes and saw she was being covered by Demitri, he was breathing heavily, but not moving much. getting out from under his body, she saw the large gash on his back bleeding, gasping she looked at the new battlefield. She thought quickly though as she looked over to where the car was, there was a energy shield installed in case of projectile attacks.

"Pocket, Jeff, get to the SUV ASAP. We can find shelter there, move your asses!" She looked down at Demitri and lifted his arm to get under his shoulder to assist him to his feet, hissing and grunting in pain he finally opened his eyes. "Stay with us, we have to make it to the car, can you do it?"

Demitri said nothing as he suddenly scooped up Ali again, with a burst of energy and using his wind powers, the man sprinted as the others followed suit. Having been released from it's bind, the monster began to make his way to follow the others, Demitri and Ali were the first to arrive, setting her down Ali got into the mangled driver's seat, Demmy lazily made his way to the back, opened up the trunk and got inside, closing the door before he passed out in pain. Pocket and Jeff got into the back seat once again as Ali tried to activate the shield, but it was busted.

"Ali, it's coming closer!!" Pocket yelled, Ali looked through the cracked mirror and saw the creature with a few skeletals following it. She had to make the call, reaching to her ear piece.

"This is Ali, we need IMMEDIATE evacuation from our current location. Our mission was compromised, requesting evacuation ASAP. We have a team member down and we're out numbered." She roared as the monster approached the vehical.

"Copy that. We're having "Cloak" bring you in as we speak, we've monitored the situation since the Skeletals appeared, prepare for evacuation." The line cut off as the monster was about to strike the SUV, but a shroud of black smog engulfed the car, everything turned pitch black for a moment before light could be seen. They were back at HDF, with higher ranked officers and soldiers alike surrounding the SUV, along with a medical staff. Ali, Pocket and Jeff got out of the SUV quickly, Jeff went to the back to open the door, Demitri still bleeding and breathing heavily. Ali was approached by Commander Hank, the "Earth Fighter" as they called him.

"Tell me what happened" he said.

OOC: Almost 2 weeks an no posts? No way I'm letting that happen to this story :D:D

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali pinched the bridge of her nose as she shook her head, sighing she dropped her hands to her hips and ran the entire mission over in her head again.
"I don't-I have no idea Hank...we were compromised."
"How the hell were your compromised?"
"The man that was there, he knew...knew about us. About me."
"Wait. You mean to tell me that one of your targets knew what you could do?"
"Target? You never said anything about a target...Hank what's going on?"
"You were meant to bring back survivors. No matter the cost. Instead you tell me that your were compromised?"
"Hank! You never said squat about any damn targets! Jeff and Pocket are over worked and tired, I'm shaken and Demetri..."
"Demetri will be fine. You had a mission and you failed."
Ali tightened her hand into a fist and felt her knuckles crack.
"Are you saying you used us to get information on this *****? I could have lost Demetri last night, a good man and vital member of my team, Earth Fighter. And you tell me that doesn't matter since the 'information' you needed didn't come back with us?"
"I couldn't tell you Alex, if I had you never would have agreed. This man that you ran into, he has the ability to control others around him, monsters, people, anyone that has a mental state easy enough to intrude on. You weren't able to use your power on him at all were you?"
"No, he took me hostage as a result."
"You lost focus. I'm not surprise he was able to get under your skin. He's good at that."
"And how do you know?"
"He used to be a trainee I was in charge of. His name is Sybille Beckett. He's a monstrous man and will do anything to win. Including using your weakness against you."
"Yeah I gathered that, next time tell me this crap before you send us out. It could have saved us a lot of grief. And maybe Demetri wouldn't be in the med ward right now. If we had been better prepared and told what the hell you wanted us to do we could have had it done. Don't let it happen again Hank."
She put a hand on his shoulder and let it drop as she headed for the med ward to get checked up on and to look in on her team. She sighed as Sasa, an older woman than herself, strode forward.
"I hear you had a rough time. I told them they should have sent me."
"Sasa, this is a really bad time right now. I need to get the med ward. Please?"
"Aw, did you get hurt? Little Ali got a boo boo?"
"I'll boo boo your face if you don't stop."
Sasa gave a sarcastic smile as Ali smirked. Sighing she shook her head and nodded as Sasa followed her.
"Yeah, it was rough, a lot more trouble than we all expected. Demetri ended up injured and the rest of us are more of less worse for wear."
"Well I'm back from my little mission they sent me on. It seems they're sending all of us in the next few days."
"And where is this?"
"Egypt. There were reports of people gone missing and the seven plagues being unleashed."
"What did you find?"
"Nothing."
Ali looked sideways at her as she swiped her card to get into the med ward.
"Nothing at all?"
"No town, no people...just an empty desert. Well I'm off, gotta go talk to commander Give the others my best will you?"
"As if your best means anything?"
"Of course not. I just want to sound like I care."
Ali shook her head and walked through the door, Pocket and Jeff met her there.
"I just talked to Sasa, we're headed to Egypt within the week. Are you two alright?"
Pocket nodded and looked as Jeff went and sat back down.
"We're fine, just tired, what about you? Did that man hurt you? Did he-"
"No, I'm fine. I just need to check on Demetri."
"He just got out of surgury. They say he'll be alright. He was allowed visitors a little while ago but I thought you would want to see him first."
"Thank you Pocket. I appreciate that."
She walked through the door that had Demetri's name on it, pulling the curtain aside she closed it behind her and sat down next to his bed. Grabbing an orange from the basket on his bedside table she began to peel it. His eyes were closed but she could feel that he was still awake. Finishing the orange she put it on a small plate and put it on his stomach.
"Are you feeding me as well?"
"You wish. How are you holding up?"
"A few stitches, but nothing I can't handle."
She nodded as he began to eat the orange piece by piece.
"I'm glad to hear you'll be alright. It looked back in the van, deep."
"Yeah, it grazed my spine."
Ali felt her stomach tighten.
"Thank goodness it didn't go deep enough to paralyze you."
"That would have been ugly."
She nodded and pinched the bridge of her nose.
"Look about the mission. I'm...well I'm sorry for slapping you. It wasn't right."
"Your apologizing? How did those words taste coming from your mouth."
"Like crap. Don't push it. Look we're being sent to Egypt within the week, you think you'll be ready for action by than?"
"Egypt? So soon?"
"Yeah, Sasa was sent to investigate, she came back with nothing."
"She failed? That's unlike her."
"No, as in she went and there was nothing there, no town, no people...not a thing, just an empty desert."
"That sounds unreasonable."
Ali put her hand on top of his and gave it a light squeeze.
"You just worry about getting better alright? I- the team needs you. So just...get better alright?"
She gave him an uncharacteristic smile as she stood and left him in the small cot to rest. She motioned Pocket and Jeff to follow her as she left the ward and went to their small living quarters, it was set up like a small hotel all the room were on separate halls, each had a bathroom attached to it but the kitchen, living room, and dining room were in the middle of the small halls, almost like a small round house. Ali went to the kitchen and pulled out a bottle of water and tossed one to Jeff while she retrieved a can of soda for Pocket. Sitting down in the computer chair she took a sip of her water and leaned back looking at the other two. She explained the situation of Egypt to them and waited for their reactions, Jeff only nodded while Pocket scowled.
"That makes no sense..."
"That's why we're going Kiddo. So both of you start to get your things ready. Pack light and pack appropriately. Once Demetri is able to move we'll be heading out. My guess is about a week or so. Until stay sharp you guys."
The nodded and left for their rooms, Ali stood and made her way back to the Medical ward, Demetri was asleep this time and she simply sat in the chair next to his bed and crossed her legs, folding her arms across her chest she felt her eyes get heavy and it wasn't long til her head fell forward and she was dozing lightly.[/color][/font]

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Sasa swiped her card to get into her room, leaving the lights off. [i]This is ridiculous. There's nothing there. What am I supposed to do - make camp and wait for something to crawl up out of the sand at me?[/i]

Her talk with the commander had not gone well. She wasn't used to failing a mission, so her barbs were quicker than usual. She'd been sent back with the retort that she could stop complaining or be cut from the mission entirely. A smirk crossed her face as she plopped down on the bed and undid her boots. [i]Not that it would do them any good. I could completely reprogram whatever heli they've got taking them out there long before it ever took off.[/i]

Boots unlaced, Sasa laid back on her bed, staring up at the ceiling. It was just as unusual for Ali and the rest to fail as it was her; their powers worked well in concert, and they all trusted Ali to keep them safe. A stab of jealousy at the camaraderie between them lanced through her like a hot knife but she squelched it quickly. She had a week to prepare to go look - [i]again, even though I told them there's nothing there[/i] - at this blank expanse of desert. She rolled over, but quickly sat back up. Lacing her boots back up, she grabbed her jacket and headed out. She passed Pocket on her way out of the base, flashing her a strained smile and with a quick, perfunctory nod to the guards.

[i]I need a bloody drink.[/i]

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Demitri's recovery was long and hard, the gash on his back was healed by one of the higher ranking medical officers, codename: Touch, for obvious reasons and her powers of healing. His internal wounds healed, but the gash on his back left a pink outline of where he was struck at, another mark to add to the collection. Demitri spent a couple more days in the med ward for treatment, but by mid Wednesday he was escorted back to his quarters to join the rest of his team, but mostly he slept and healed from his wounds the whole time, Ali was kind enough to visit him for a couple of hours to chit chat and make sure he was feeling better. It brought the burly soldier some comfort while he was in pain. Mail came in for Demtiri as he slumbered, more letters of promotions to a commanding position, but like the ones before, he would reject them, he's not a desk type kind of soldier. The following days endured much rest, one a particular Saturday evening though, the weather changed...for the worst. Demitri's fever piked at a high level as the soldier tossed and turned in his bed all day, the winds outside the compound grew massively as they blew the surrounding forest life from left to right violently. The other soldiers thought it was odd, so did the commanding officers, but it was clear to some who knew the scarred man that he was in pain, and it effected the weather as he lost some control while he slept. But the mission they went through played over in his mind over and over again, still the main image he could see was Ali's scared face when she was taken hehostage by that mysterious man that negated all of her powers to keep cool and others calm. The pain in his back was unbearable as he shifted his head from side to side, grunting as he tried to rid his thoughts of his team mate being slapped on the face, or kicked in the stomach by the intruder that ambushed the group....or worse. Images Demitrti didn't care to think of clouded his mind. The it was starting outside was darker than "Cloak's" power when they were teleported to the HDF base from their mission.

"Man, it's getting bad outside" A soldier noticed as he patrolled the base compound with his weapon, other's began to notice that it was beginning to rain a lot and thunder at the same time, taking shelter in their small bunkers, all personnel were to stay inside during this hurricane like storm. Inside the commander's quarters, it was Cloak, Emma (Phoenix) Anderson and Commander Hank that knew what was happening.

"What's wrong with the sky?" Cloak asked as he looked outside, the heavy rain poured hard against the glass window of his common room, lightning struck the air loud and fierce.

"It's gotta be a soldier who can either control the wind or thunder, or maybe both..." Commander Hank commented, he lounged in his chair looking over the recorded satilite footage of the last mission to the southern military base Ali's team was sent on, he continued to map out their paths and separation points to determine the failure in their mission. "Damn...they really didn't stand a chance at all." He sighed as he closed his computer screen. Demitri continued to toss and turn in pain as the thunder and wind grew more violent outside of the compound, beginning to gasp loudly in pain he struggled to wake up, but nothing seemed to work. More images of that beast and mysterious man plagued his mind as the soldier gripped the sheets of his bed.

"Alex...." He yelped in pain, breathing heavily like a fish would outside of water, his door opened suddenly and closed just as quickly, all of the group members were woken up by the storm outside. They all fully recovered and prepared for their next mission, still questionable about the mysterious weather.

"It's probably some new recruit who's lost control of their powers" Pocket mentioned as she yawned, bu quickly have a scream when the lightning cut off the power to the main facility. Ali tried to use her powers to calm Pocket down, but she felt something else in the air, pain.

"Try to get some rest, I'm gonna check on something" With that, Jeff and Pocket went back to their respective rooms as ordered, but it was Ali who lingered and made her way to Demitri's room, having her eyes adjusted to the light she could make out Demitri's body violently jerking in it's spot as he gasped for air and hissed at his own pain. She causiously moved to the side of his bed and knelt down. "Demitri....wake up, it's alright. You have to wake up" She placed a hand on his bare chest, wet from sweat and heat, still the giant twisted and turned, grunting words and phrases from his lips.

"Alex.....Alex...." He panted, his fever was off the scale as Ali felt forehead, burning badly. She knew something was wrong since he called her by her full name, that rarely happened, especially when she was around. He must be combating with the small infection from his wound, or maybe it was something more.

"Demitri....wake up! You're safe and sound at home with me...us." She caught herself quickly before shaking the man gently, but nothing came to him as the storm grew stronger. Ali used her powers to try and calm the giant, it worked after a while as the wiggling and tossing stopped, leaving the man exhausted from his movements. Suddenly, Demitri opened his eyes and shot straight up gasping for air, scaring Ali for a moment. The soldier looked scared, sweating in his bed scared, like a bad dream played over and over in his mind. "It's ok" She patted him on the shoulder, looking quickly he saw Ali's face in the lightning's light for a moment before calming down. Still medicated on morphine, he slowly cupped her face with his large hand, shocking the woman for a moment.

"Alex...?" He exhaled.

"Yes Demitri. You're home safe and sound with the rest of the team.

".......are you?" He mumbled, still lucid dreaming as he placed his other hand on her shoulder, tight. Ali was a little stunned by the sudden action, but she kicked up her powers some to ease the troubled team mate.

"Yes" She stated, placing a hand on his scared chest. "I'm safe." She whispered gently, looking into his dialated eyes, with that statement, Demitri's eyes dunk down and his body sank back onto the wet mattress sheets and passed out. Ali looked upon her team mate and brushed his wet strands of hair away from his face. From the entrance of the room, she could feel another presence, it was Commander's Cloak and Hank, standing at the doorway.

"So, it was him causing the storm, the poor guy" Commander Cloak, wearing a dark blue cloak around his neck that covered his bod stated as he went to the bedside to see his ally. Worn out and hurting.

"He wouldn't be like this is we had all the information we needed" Ali firmly stated as she shot a hateful look at Commander Hank, he merely brushed it off.

"We had to get what little information we could Ali, I'm sorry it cost Demitri so much pain in the process, and to you and the others as well. But this next mission might be a connecting key to all of this" Hank stated as Cloak went to rejoin him at the doorway. "When the time is right, you'll be informed, that is all" Both men left the squads corridor at the same time, Ali merely gave a dirty look towards Commander Hank as they left, but looked back at Demitri still writhing in pain as he slept. He mumbled her name a couple times as he squinted his eyes and gasped for air.

"Alex..."

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali stood and walked to the bathroom, sure to reach out towards Demetri to keep him calm, grabbing a bowel she filled it with cool water and snatched a wash cloth from his shower room, his was and shampoo still lingering in the small room. Walking back out she shook her head again at the lack of concern Hank and Cloak had shown. She sat back next to Demetri's bed side and dipped the cloth into the cool water, wrung it out and placed it on his forehead, he cringed back as the cloth hit his over heated skin. Ali took a deep breath and moved to sit next to him on the bed, patting his head gently with the cloth. She did this, switching out the water as it got warm for close to an hour, glad that his skin seemed to cool by a few degrees. She continued to use her powers to keep him calm as she ran her fingers through his bangs gently, he was cooling down and she smiled gratefully as the wind died down more out side. She paused her ministrations as she heard a voice outside the door, Pocket, the door cracked open and the younger girl looked in, Ali was already back in her chair watching as Demetri began to toss his head again, if only slightly.
"How's he doing?"
"Not so good. Still has a fever and it's all I can do to keep his nightmares at bay. I wish I knew what was bothering him so much."
They were silent as they watched the large man toss his head from side to side, the silence broken as he gritted his teeth in pain as gasped.
"...Alex..."
Pocket looked at Ali and smirked slightly.
"I think I know what's bothering him."
"Pocket, don't be juvenile. He seems to be hung up on this last mission. Probably thinks he's failed is all."
"Are you blushing?"
"Don't be ridiculous. I'll watch over him for tonight, if he gets worse I'll call you to fetch the med team. Clear?"
Pocket nodded and gave an affirmative but Ali could still hear the teasing in her voice.
"And Pocket?"
"Yes Ali?"
"Don't tell anyone about me staying with him will you?"
"Embarrassed?"
"I don't want people to think I'm soft."
"Cause your worried about a team mate? Why would people think that? And if they had anything to say about it I'll just pop them a good one."
"Calypso..."
"Yeah I got it."
Ali waited til Pocket shut the door to move back onto the bed with Demetri, as soon as she began to run her fingers through his bangs again, his tossing lessened.
"I suppose it's a comforting thing...knowing that someone is there with you when you feel the most vulnerable."
"A-Alex..."
"What haunts your dreams so much to keep calling out to me?"
She pinched the bridge of her nose and stood, walking to the door she locked it tight and took a deep breath. She returned to his side and placed a hand on his forehead, she had never tried this before and it seemed like her only option to pull her friend from whatever evil held him in such a horrible dream. Dream Reading, she knew it would take a lot out of her but she was out of options. Concentrating she let out a deep breath as she did her best to project her conciseness into his, to merge her self with his dreams and try and figure out what was holding him there. At first it was fuzzy, than as moments passed it became more clear, her own face. She was shocked to see the level of emotion on her face, the fear in her eyes as Sybille took her from her team, she felt her calm wash away from him and a slight panic rise in his emotions. She pulled herself back, breathing heavily. She looked back at the door and than back at Demetri, taking his hand in her's she gave it a light squeeze and put his knuckles to her forehead.
"Demetri, nothing happened, I'm fine. Your home at the base with...with me. I'm here right next to your bed and we're all fine."
She let out an explosive sigh, she was no good at things like this, no good with emotions...but she was a woman, and there were always things she did on instinct as a woman, her next move was such. She lay down on the bed next to him, her weight pulling the blankets tight against his body as she rested on top of them, she tucked her arm under his neck and lay his head on her shoulder. It seemed to help calm him some as his hand squeezed her's, she gently raked her nails through the back of his hair, doing all she could to keep him calm, her presence as well as her powers seemed to do the trick as the storm calmed more and more by the minute as she stayed. She let out a quiet sigh as his groaning and tossing stopped, she was glad, but it seemed as if she would need to stay in order for him to rest peacefully. Ali continued to rake her nails along the back of his neck and into his hair long after his tossing had stopped, it was helping her keep a calm on her emotions as well. It had been a long time since she had allowed her self to be this close to another person, since she was younger, more naive and her powers had just developed. It had led to a heart break and her closing herself off from others. She could feel her cheeks heat from time to time as he shifted to get comfortable, sometimes pulling her closer to him, other times inhaling her scent to reassure himself she was still there, her heart would speed up or slow down as he moved, Sybille's words echoing in her mind about her caring for him. She was a woman after all and she had been with her team longer than any others, but she did not let it get to her knowing it was a very unlikely chance that feelings such as 'love' would be shared between two people, let alone her and Demetri. She sighed pushing her thoughts to the back of her mind as she continued to calm Demetri, she too became weak with lack of sleep and before long drifted into slumber next to him. Her hand unconsciously keeping a gently pace of raking her nails through the back of his hair trying to allow both of them adequate sleep for come morning, they would be starting on their long 2 day flight to Egypt only to begin another mission.
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The giant slept like a rock, he didn't know how well sleep would come to him but something seemed to help his thoughts of the last mission go away, especially the bad ones, the storm cleared out hours ago and the sun began to rise in the horizon. Demitri shifted in his spot a little bit, still remaining on his back but his head turned towards something soft and sweet, the aroma was enticing yet familiar to him. Stirring in his spot, Demitri finally opened his eyes, still sore for the body jerking he did last night, but was more surprised from what he say after a couple of blinks, it was Ali. Resting peacefully next to him, she looked exhausted as well but she slept soundly even as Demitri stood up, holding onto her neck from underneath and shoulder so she wouldn't roll on her face. Demitri was puzzled, he doesn't even remember anything after talking to Ali back in the med ward, they must have moved him to his quarters a couple of days ago. He was glad that his team visited him, especially Ali who gave him that orange, how did she know his favorite fruit? Maybe it was just a coincidence, but the thought was enough to set him at ease from his pain, and now this. The female stirred some in her slumber, until her eyes slowly opened for the first time that day, a little stunned that she wasn't looking at Demitri, instead up at him as he peered down at his team mate.

"How are you feeling?" She asked sitting up herself, stretching her arms, but never leaving his eye contact.

"Better...thank you. Did you stay here with me? Why?" Puzzled but he covered his torso with a thin sheet, covering his scars from previous battles, she didn't seem to mind at all, that wasn't her concern.

"Seemed like you were fighting off an infection, you were tossing and turning, you even made a thunder storm last night while you slept Demitri. I came in to calm you down and it seemed like it worked a lot. You slept for hours on end afterwards" Ali sighed as she stood up from the bed and took the bowl of water and the wash cloth back to his bathroom. Demitri was still surprised she even did any of that for him, he never knew she could be so...caring, especially to him. "I see you're feeling better now, the fever broke at least. We leave in a couple hours for Egypt, the dossier for the next mission is on your bedside table". Demitri stat on the side of his bed before standing up, Ali had her back to him as she faced the entrance of his room, unlocking the door and making her way out. Before she could slip out, Demitri caught her hand gently and pulled her back into his room, and into his body for a semi-tight hug. Still towering over the woman, he was very thankful for her kindness.

"I was so scared for you when you were taken away, but then you saved me from the Siren, you knocked me to my senses and when that monster was about to strike you I just acted on saving you. Alex-" He looked down to meet her gaze, she didn't resist or flinch at the hug, but just met his eyes. "I-I don't know what I would do if I lost someone like you, it tears me up inside to know such a strong woman could be taken advantage of or harmed by someone else, especially after all the missions we've been through and you've come on top of the enemy." Demitri released Ali from his grip, but placed both his hands on her shoulders as he knelt to come face-to-face with his team mate.

"I'm stronger than I appear, our enemy will find out the hard way" Ali snorted in some frustration

"But this time, you weren't, and I know you were scared"

"...maybe a little, but I controlled myself. The team and mission comes first before anything else" Ali felt like she was losing her own self, she slowly hardened up again as their leader when Demitri was right about everything. "I'm glad to know you're safe and sound, and I want to thank you for saving me from that monster" Quickly she stood on her toes and planted a quick kiss on Demitri's cheek before turning around and leaving his quarters. The giant stayed there and blushed, his phone rang in the room taking him out of his daze. Going over to his work station he picked up the line.

"This is Demitri Athens"

"Demitri, good to hear you're up and about" Stated a familiar voice, it was Commander Hank on the other line, he seemed cheerful. "Listen, I know this is sudden but I need you, and only YOU at the interrogation center immediately."

"Why just me?"

"We found some of the survivors a town over from the military base, they were trying to report the attack but our guys got them after we scooped your team out from harms way. Come at once" With that, the phone line hung up. Demitri grabbed the paperwork and changed into his uniform, but only wore a tank top before he made his way out of their chambers and to the hallways to get to his location. Once he got there, the room only had Commander Hank on one side looking into the glass viewer of the room, Sergent Mike, the Flame Master was on the other side talking to one of the surviving soldiers. "Listen closely Demitri" and he did so.

"So you all escaped to the control center and finally found a safe way out, then what happened?" Sergent Mike asked.

"We...we were all scared, then some man appeared and was talking all crazy and what not. Saying some squad was on the way to eliminate everything that moved, but for some reason...he let us go without warning. It was like he wanted us to leave, he was scary looking and looked like he had no soul, and he was commanding th-those things to kill our friends. We took the only option we could." The sobbing soldier lost his composure. Sergent Mike nodded and took notes, he looked over the corner of his shoulder back to the mirror that showed his reflection, but he knew who was on the other side.

"Another useless informant, what a shame. But at least we know your mission was compromised before the attack. It was just an excuse to send a team of HDF soldiers to find out what had happened" Commander Hank spoke, he then pressed a button to chat with the Sergent. "That'll do sir, we thank you for you information. Flame Master, do your work" Demitri was confused by what he meant, suddenly through the glass was a large flame the engulfed the innocent soldier, it was the witness.

"WHAT THE HELL?!?!" Demitri shouted as he ran to the mirror and looked closer, The Flame Master set this man on fire on purpose, he screamed in agonizing pain rolling on the ground, only to spread more fire on his body. His screams could only be heard in the two rooms. "COMMANDER, WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS??" Demitri looked back angrily.

"You were to bring survivors back at any cost in case they knew something about the target, all the ones we've interviewed only had bits and pieces" He sighed.

"How...how many have you slained?" Demitri really didn't want to know.

"11 so far, he's the 12th" Demitri's stomach dropped and he became dizzy, but he stood his ground. "Oh, and Demitri, let's keep this between you and us shall we?"

"Why should I...you're...you're a monster!" Demitri caughed a bit.

"Because one of the medications you took while you were healing, I had Sergent Mike slip you a bug, only we can sense if you've expose any sensitive information about this or anything else. You wouldn't want your team mates to spend countless hours wondering why you suddenly exploded into flames now would we? The commander had an evil smirk on his face, Demitri was caught off guard, grunting he angrily made his way out of the room. "Oh, and one more thing, your flight leaves in a couple of hours. I EXPECT results this time, or that loud mouth Ali will get whats coming to her if she challenges my word again" Demitri turned around quickly and launched a strong gust of wind towards the commander, violently sending him to the wall and keeping him there.

"You touch her...I kill you. You touch my team...I'll kill you Earth Fighter" The commander struggled until Demitri let him go and left the room, the giant stormed down the hall angry, every personnel moved to the side and out of his way. Demitri made it back to his barracks, no one was in sight as he went to his room and began to pack for the mission, confused and concerned for his friends and the woman he cared for.

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali paced her room for what seemed like forever, Demetri's embrace and her own action flooding her mind and making it hard to concentrate. After a few more minutes she shook the thoughts from her head and grabbed her bag as he watch went off telling her it was time to board the plane. Thankfully the air craft had been remodeled on the inside to accommodate them and it made it some what easier for them to make the long journey. She walked down the halls tapping on the doors of her team mates and acknowledged them as they all joined her in the main room, when Demetri emerged she could feel anger and confusion rolling off of the man in waves, it made her worry for the man but she showed nothing as she leaned on the door frame that led to the small air craft bay.
"We'll be flying first class for the next few days, the plane has been remodeled to hold all of us comfortably so there should, and will not, be any arguments of seating or bedding arrangements. Mostly considering there are none. We'll be in sleeping bags on the floor of the main passenger room. I understand it's not ideal but it's the best we could get. There is a full sized bathroom with shower and a supply of food for the trip to and back from Cairo-"
Jeff looked up at her, his voice monotone as he spoke.
"You've gotten more information on our mission?"
"We're off to Cairo, we'll be investigating the town Sasa was supposed to check out, since she was unable to fine anything, as in there was no town there, we're all going. We're meeting with a contact when we get there, his name and position are unknown at the moment. He'll be remaining with us for the rest of the time after we make contact. You all will show him respect is that clear?"
They all nodded.
"We proceed in a few moments, no fighting over spots, just pick one and settle in, it's a long trip and we won't be getting and R and R for a while so make the trip an easy one and try not to stress your selves out before we get there. Now, is everyone packed correctly? Light clothing for the day, heavy for the night?"
Again she got nods from everyone.
"Good, board and settle in. I'll be there in a minute I have to take care of something first."
She watched as they all made their way to the plane, her eyes lingering on Demetri but she looked away as he turned to meet her gaze.
"Hank, I need a word."
"Anything for you lovely."
"Do not mock me. I need a confirmation."
"On?"
"The location. I'll not go in blind like we did last time. It nearly cost us everything and I won't stand for it again."
"You know Talon, your over stepping."
"I'll do alot more than that when it comes to the safety of my team. Confirmation. Now."
"You'll land in a small town outside of Cairo, from there you'll travel on horse back to your contact point and meet him. He'll take you from there."
"Roger that. One more thing. Have you spoken with Demetri at all today? He seems on edge."
"Athens? No I haven't seen him all day why?"
Ali glanced sideways at the man, she could feel he was lying but what reason did he need to lie to her about Demetri? She nodded and took the answer regardless.
"Right, I'll speak with him than, maybe it's just connected to the fever he had last night."
"Talon, why not just leave it as it is. You know how that man can be."
"Yes I do, that's why I'll talk to him on the matter. The last thing we all need is him thinking to much and letting it cloud his thoughts for this mission."
"Talon."
She turned towards the man, he was towering over her now, his face set in a grim frown as he blocked her from sight of the others on the plane, she could feel the tension coming from Demetri, even at this distance.
"This is a direct order, leave the man alone, he has enough on his plate without you getting in his way and bothering him."
"I did not realize I was a bother Sir."
"Your nosey, that makes you a bother."
"I'm concerned with the well being of my team."
"Either way, I'm telling you to stay out of it."
"It? What exactly is it?"
"Your about two steps away from being put in the brig."
Ali blinked in surprise but said nothing, nodding she turned on her heel and stalked towards the plane, as she entered the door shut behind her leaving the team in momentary darkness, she knew the hands before they even clamped down on her upper arms, the next thing she heard over the roar of the engine was his deep voice in her ear, the noise of the plane was what made him stand so close to be heard, she could feel his body heat and the dampness from his breath as he spoke into her ear.
"Just do as he says Alex. It's important."
She gave no indication that she had heard him as he went to the small spot he had claimed, as the plane rolled from the hanger and light filled the small cabin she could see where everyone had set them selves up, Sasa and Jeff were next to each other in the corners of the small area, she wasn't surprised in the least, they liked the quiet, Ali found her self between Demetri and Pocket. She couldn't complain about this in the least, these two were who she conversed with the most, and only because they were the most talkative out of their group. Sitting down she crossed her legs and pulled out her lap top and began to type away at it lightly stealing glances to her right at Demetri who leaned against the wall with a book in his hands. The memory of him being so close moments ago and the memories of him holding onto her last night as if she were his last hope flashed through her mind and the loss of it seemed to leave her cold. She shivered involuntarily and shook it off, reaching above her head on to the small table top behind them she pulled something from the basket up there and tossed it into the large man's lap. He blinked as he picked up the orange and stared at her as she began to have a side quarrel with Pocket.
"Why is it that we always only have fruit or some other healthy crap on these missions...why can't we just have some junk food?"
"Because it's just that, junk. Pocket we have to stay in shape and 'junk food' does not help us in the least. Eat a kiwi or something."
"Why kiwi? You have Demmy an orange."
"Their his favorites. That's why."
"How do you know that?"
"I just do Pocket, now will you please stop griping about the menu?"
"But it's all old people food."
Ali choked on the coffee she had begun to sip, the black, murky liquid soaking the front of her shirt and dripping from her chin into her lap, the bewildered look on her face sending Pocket into a fit of laughter.
"Old?! Who in the hell are you calling old?!"
"It was a joke, but wow, if you could see your face!"
Just as Ali was about to erase the expression Pocket produced a camera from her mind and took a photo. As the picture became clear she began to laugh again.
"Perfect. Demmy you got to see this."
Ali felt her face heat from the blush covering her cheeks.
"No he does not! Pocket don't you dare give that picture to him!"
Ali fumbled for the photo as Pocket tossed it to the large man who caught it deftly and glanced at it before Ali jumped towards him to take the picture back, she stretched as far as she could to reach it as he held it up above his head and chuckled.
"Not a bad look Ali."
"Stop it you, just give it to me!"
"I think I'll hang onto it for you."
She glared down at him and blinked as she caught up with her self, she had her arm out stretched reaching for the picture, her other hand on his chest and looking down at him she could see flecks of Green within his Hazel eyes. Feeling her face heat up she quickly say back down in her own spot and crossed her arms over her chest, her hand still warm from the contact with his chest.
"Fine keep it, just don't go around showing it off to everyone alright?"
Demetri looked back at the photo and smiled.
"Deal."
She glanced at him from the side to see him smiling slightly as he picked up the orange and began to eat it, nudging Pocket she pointed to the basket the girl was now going through.
"Pass me some of that 'old people food' would you?"
The girl giggled and handed her a bundle of grapes that she took with a thank you. Closing her eyes she munched of the fruit as silence filled the small cabin, the trip already looking somewhat brighter in her eyes.
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The flight was starting out to be a good, everyone was comfortable in their own spots, the ride was smooth so far and the sun was still above the clouds, the sunlight filled the cabin showing all of the members of the team in clear view, the pilots were enclosed in their own quarters, their own living space as well. So meeting them wouldn't be possible, they pretty much had their own house of their own like the team did. Sasa took it upon herself to take a small nap in her chair as she reclined backwards, accompanied with a small pillow she brought along with her, Jeff stared outside at the clouds, set off in his own world. He finished reading a couple of martial arts manuals he brought with him, and using his powers to levitate the fruit he was given helped him practice and keep strong for the mission ahead. Pocket entertained herself with her video games she brought, listening to the sound with her headphones, she complained earlier about her "ear popping" and decided to put those on to help her situation. Demitri stayed concentrated on his books, it helped him relax after what he witnessed in the interrogation room before they left for the plane. Ali worked on her laptop to send further information to the higher up's about their last mission, she had been working for almost 2 hours on the full report. She finally sent the last email documents before closing her computer and pinching the bridge of her nose for some mental comfort, but something seemed to be bothering her as well. Demitri laid his book on his lap, still open to save his spot, he had been taking time to highlight different key notes during the flight for later. Ali looked over at the soldier while he peered outside of his window, there was nothing but clouds and sunlight, pretty boring to Ali and she knew it wasn't something Demitri enjoyed staring at hour after hour.

"So" Ali finally broke the silence. "Commander Hank said he didn't speak with you today, I know he was lying, care to share some insight?" Demitri was brought back to reality as he closed his eyes and remembered what happened to that innocent soldier and what Sergent Mike did after they got their small information about their last target. The screams echoed in his mind until he opened his eyes and turned his head to see Ali looking up at him.

"He..." Remembering the threat he was given, Demitri had to think fast to sway his comrade. "He mentioned his sincerest apologies about not informing us ahead of time about the target, he actually was about to send me some flowers with the rest of the higher up's, but you know him, always busy and forgets" Demitri smiled, but he knew that wasn't enough to keep Ali from prying for more information. And soon, he would see why.

"So, lying to me too huh?"

(Dame, she's good. Too good at times) Demitri thought as he sighed slowly and looked back out his window, not meeting her gaze. "Ali, it's best to drop the whole thing, please. It's nothing you have to concern yourself with, really."

"I don't wanna hear that Demitri, I know you were upset about something and I'm going to get to the bottom of it" Ali pridefully claimed, Demitri snapped his head to hear instantly.

"NO" He shouted in concern, it caught the attention of everyone in the cabin, and even woke up Sasa from her slumber as they all looked at the giant questionably. Demitri blushed a little, embarrassed by his sudden burst of emotion. "I mean...it's not something you have to trouble yourself with. You have enough on your plate with the new mission child, you don't need to worry about me. I'm just taking the meds like the docs said and can be jumpy at times" Demitri picked his book up and highlighter and began to read once again, he was reading his favorite book "Of Mice and Men" as usual. Ali was unhappy with his refusal and snorted some before getting up from her chair to go to the bathroom. Demitri felt bad for yelling at her, but there was no way he could tell her or Demitri would die right in front of them, or at the very least, Commander Hank would take it upon himself to interject. Demitri shivered at the thought and tried to block the image out of his mind, he wanted to give her some kind of warning. The flight continued as the sun dipped down below the clouds leaving the violet night to appear, then the stars came out along with the moon. It was a full moon tonight as they continued to fly towards their destination, Demitri decided to take a shower that evening, the hot water sooth his sore gash on his back, soon to be another scar he though to himself. (How could he do that to that man? Is the target he's after worth our lives, or the lives of others at HDF? Has he become so power driven he'll do anything to get to the top? Thank God I turned down all those promotion offers, or else...I could have been a man like he is now" Demitriran his fingers through his long wet hair thinking to himself, he just stood under the shower head pacing in his small bathing space. Once finished the man dried himself and changed into his night clothing, just his boxers and sweat pants like usual. Leaving the bathroom he noticed all his team members already changed and ready for bed, all members slept in a connecting circle, like sleeping around a camp fire, Demitri was in the middle of Ali and Jeff, so he made his way to his sleeping bag and made himself comfortable as the others finished preparing themselves.

"We should have a scary story night" Pocket smiled as she got a flashlight out and put it under her face. Sasa took her pillow and tossed it at the girl, hitting her in the face.

"Those are for children, and this isn't camping ya ditz" Sasa shook her head and smiled, Jeff had already settled himself in his sleeping bag while Ali sat idian syle to brush her long her, Demitri never noticed her hair out of her pony tail before, she looked different, almost like an actual girly girl.

(Well now, that's a different view) Demitri thought as he opened up his own sleeping bag and hopped on in, Ali looked over at the giant, still a bit ticked off from their conversation earlier.

"What are you looking at?" She snapped.

(Nevermind, there goes that thought) Demitri sighed, he shook his head to answer her question.

"Probably all your crazy hair, maybe its time for a cut" Sasa joked. " You could make a giant braid out of it and knock someone out ya know"

"You'd be the first Sasa" She joked back smirking at the girl. "So, who's got a story?" Ali asked as she put her brush away in her side bag and layed down on her belly inside her sleeping bag. Demitri was on his back thinking to himself before he got an idea for a small story.

"Any of you guy's heard about the Boy who cried Wolf?"

"Of course, that's an old child's story, kind of like Ali...old child" Sasa laughed some, getting an angry look from their team leader, Pocket laughed some before answering.

"No I haven't Demmy, tell it to me" She smiled as she laid down in her own sleeping bag, Jeff turned on his stomach to pay attention to Demitri as well, it was something to hear before they all went to sleep, might as well.

"Alright, one time there was a boy guarding a herd of Sheep, and the towns people told him to cry "wolf" if a wolf ever appeared. So the boy cried wolf once and they all came ready to defend the sheep, but when they got there, there was no wolf to be found. So they went back, the boy thought it would be funny to cry wolf again, and again they came ready. But once again, no wolf. This continued for quite some time until the towns people were fed up with the boy, but one day he actually saw a wolf near his herd of sheep, but he wasn't after the sheep, he was after the boy. So the boy cried "Wolf, WOLF" over and over, but he had no one come to his help, and the boy was eaten by the wolf" demitri laughed to himself that he actually remembered that story whole.

"So don't make the mistake of telling fibs, yada yada yada" Sasa said as she rolled to her side to catch some sleep.

"Oh it gets better, here's the HDF version. The wold spared the boy as long as the boy promised not to tell the towns people that he was around so he could find something in the town he needed. Of course, the boy is going to protect his flock from any harm, even at the cost of his own life, he would have no choice if anyone was hurt. And the wolf promised not to hurt anyone, he only wanted some information." Demitri had to choose his words carefully as not to activate the bud he was given in his body, any strong key words could set something off. Pocket and Jeff seemed interested in the story, Sasa stayed away long enough to hear his version. Ali was listening closely, her eyes squinted some as she thought about the story, it was new to her. But something seemed amiss. "So you see, to protect the his sheep and himself, and anyone else, the boy cooperated with the wolf, even thought he knew it was a dangerous game. Even though harmless information was needed, it still pained the boy that he couldn't his home base about the wolf he'd encountered." Demitri snuggled himself down on his pillow and rested his head, he was getting tired himself.

"Interesting..." Jeff softly said as he rested.

"I hate werewolves, I've heard their monsterous" Pocket yawned, she too was feeling tired and laid down for sleep, Ali laid down quietly thinking about the story. She wondered if it had any meaning, especially when Demitri mentioned "Home base". Both Demitri's and Ali's head were close to one another, the lights turned off in the cabin as the night sky illuminated the plane from the open windows. Ali thought long and hard about Demitri's addition to the story, the others were fast asleep withing an hour, but she was still awake thinking.

"Alex..." Demitri whispered in the air, she shifted some to her side, scooting up some as her head met Demitri's, their hair touching on the ground as they were touching, in a sense, together again. It brought Demitri some comfort knowing she was close by. Ali knew something was bothering him, he called her by her name. That was a sure sign.

"Yes Demitri? She whispered in a sweet, soft tone. She too loved the face Demitri was close by to her, usually it would make her smile, but tonight, she was concerned.

"Are you alright?" He asked softly again.

"I'm a bit confused about your story Demitri, where did you hear it from?" She questioned as she lifted herself up by her arms to look down at Demitri's face, his eyes halfway closed until he met her gaze in the moonlight. Lovely eyes she has, he never really had a close encounter until this morning. "Or you didn't hear it at all? Demitri...let's say we were at "home base" and I'm one of the town's people, would you have warned me about the intruder?" Demitri said nothing, he only had a sad look on his face and moved his eyes away from hers to the side. "Would you try to tell me at least?" Nothing again from the giant soldier. "Even if it meant hurting me?" She hid back some emotion from the last question, but she felt Demitri's emotions shoot straight through the roof, she knew something was up for sure. Ali didn't even need the use of her powers to deduce that. Ali laid back down, touching heads again with her tam mate's as they both laid on the ground of the plane, emotions rising and warnings given. She eliminated all the possibilities before she came to one that stood out the most today, her confrontation wit her superior that surprised her the most before they left. "Demitri....Commander Hank..."

"Wolf" Demitri sternly whispered.

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali sat up straight in an instant, a deep urge to punch something and almost as sudden she felt sick to her stomach. Jumping up from her sleeping bag she hopped over the rest of her team as Demetri sat up slowly and watched as she ducked into the bathroom, moments later he could hear her retching. He stood slowly and made his way to the bathroom to see her leaning over the toilet bowel trying her best to hold her hair away from her face. She jumped as she felt his large hands on the back of her neck pulling her hair to the side.
"T-thank you..."
"Are you alright?"
"No. Not at all."
Ali pushed away from the toilet gently, she didn't bother telling Demetri he still had her hair, it made her feel as if he had her rooted there.
"You mean to tell me that he-"
"Don't."
"What do you mean?"
"I can't."
"Did he-the wolf, threaten you?"
There was no rise in his emotions when she asked this.
"Me?"
She staggered to her right as she tried to stand, the swell of emotions, the panic, fear, anger, worry and confusion swarmed together and caught her off guard, but what really did it was the fact that most of them were directed towards her.
"Demetri..."
He looked away from her, his emotions turning dark and directed towards himself.
"Stop it. It's not your fault. We can handle our selves, just do ME a favor...stay-stay safe please...I uhm. Never mind. Let's just get some rest."
She brushed her teeth quickly and moved past Demetri to return to her sleeping bag, she stopped as she felt his large hand close gently around her upper arm.
"You know you can talk to me Ali."
"I know. I just...I'm not. I'm not good at this."
"At what?"
She placed her hand on his bare chest, the heat almost making her draw her hand back but it remained, she looked up to see him close his eyes and his emotions raced through her like a violent hurricane, she swayed as she got dizzy though the meaning of the man's emotions were unknown to her.
"D-Demetri, is there anyway you could control your emotions. I can't really read them but they're so wild at the moment it's making me dizzy."
Almost instantly his emotions switched from the hurricane to worry, slight panic. Ali shook her head to clear her thoughts and looked up at the man, he still held her arm and her hand still rested against his skin, the heat reminding her of this.
"Look I-we-we need to get some sleep. It's late."
"I want to make sure you'll be alright first."
"I'm less worried about me and more worried about you, ever since the last mission things have been..conflicted, between us."
"Conflicted how."
"I can't get a handle on how..this, us, I don't really understand it enough to put it into words. All I know is it's confusing and it leaves me tongue tied."
"You mean feelings?"
"Emotions. I can feel everything remember? And when it comes to us, between us, the emotions are so frantic, so wild I can't understand any of it."
"You ever think of just not trying to read into the emotions and just read people your self?"
"It's not that easy. But now that we're on the subject of...us, not that there's an 'us' per say but the subject as in our relationship, not relationship...um. Damn."
"Your really not good at this kind of thing are you?"
"No. Not really. Look, what I'm trying to ask is why were you so worried about me when you fell ill? All you seemed to mention was me. Why is that?"
"I saw how scared you were, we've never run into anyone that could completely negate your powers. I did not want to see you get hurt."
"I was able to read some of your dreams while you were sick with fever, your emotions that night were frantic, and so dark they scared me, I wanted to see what caused you such pain. You were dreaming of Sybille hurting me...worse than that."
"Please don't bring that up. I don't want to think back on it right now. Ever."
Ali blinked, to shocked to act as he tugged her close again into a light hug, her cheeks heated as his scent washed over her.
"D-Demetri?"
He released her suddenly as if he was just realizing what he had done.
"It's late, we should get some rest."
Ali blinked, shocked as he moved away from her, his emotions directed towards her, they were empty, as if longing for something, she acted on instinct as she reached forward and grabbed his wrist. Her hand barely wrapped around his wrist and for the first time since they had first met many years ago how much larger he was compared to the rest of them; he turned to look at her as she glanced up at him, her hair was still ruffled and frayed from her retching earlier and it fell into her face as the rest of it framed her shoulders. He frowned as she kept a gentle hold on his wrist as if debating something but not sure whether to act on it.
"Something you need to say Ali?"
"I forget. You were right, let's get some rest. Maybe I'll remember in the morning."
She ran her thumb across the underside of his wrist as she passed him and went to her sleeping bag, as she slid in she realized she still had on her night robe, unlacing it she pulled it off her shoulders and dropped it beside her pillow as Demetri finally followed her and began to get into his bag as well. Ali had her hair in her lap as she brushed it again, her night gown hugging her body, the thin satin giving her goose bumps as she ran the brush through her hair over and over as if it was calming her, which it was. She hid her face with her hair from Demetri, she could feel her cheeks burn as he settled down for the night. After a few more minutes she flipped off the small light by her bag and lay down, her head close to Demetri's as she got comfortable. She gently touched the top of her head to Demetri's, sleep hard to come by she simply lay there looking at the top of the cabin trying to absorb the information Demetri had shared with her.
Morning came slowly for Ali, she was usually the first one up but her thoughts kept her up most of the night causing her to rise later than usual, still she was the first in the shower that morning, washing her self and than her hair she let the hot water hit her back loosening up her muscles til she thought she was ready to go. Reaching out she grabbed a towel, wrapped it around herself and stepped out, not in the least bit surprised to see Sasa using the mirror to apply her makeup.
"You used that shampoo again didn't you Alex?"
"My Tea Tree? Of course, that's all I use why?"
"Not that I don't like mints or anything, but it makes you smell like a thin mint."
"A what?"
"It's a girl scout cookie, they're call thin mints. Your shampoo makes you smell like them. Maybe that's why I catch Demetri looking at you like he wants to eat you."
"Don't be foolish...you think he really looks at me like that?"
Sasa burst into laughter making Ali's cheeks turn red.
"Your horrid."
"I knew you would fall for that one! You have the hots for Athens don't you?"
"Now your being foolish. Of course I don't"
"You don't have to hide it you know. We can all see it."
"Sasa, not only would a relationship between co-workers not work for many reasons, I seriously doubt he looks at me that way."
Sasa shook her head and left the bathroom, her things in hand. Ali finished drying herself off and turned on her music which filtered through the bathroom as she got dressed, dried her hair and brushed it out, putting on what little make up she did wear, eye liner, mascara, and chap stick, she went through her routine of brushing her teeth and stretching. Hearing the door open she didn't bother turning around, the emotions told her what she needed to know.
"Good morning Pocket."
"Don't speak to me unless you have sugar or coffee."
Ali let out a small chuckle at the girl as Pocket brushed her hair and teeth, she looked back as Ali planted her foot against the wall and did a vertical split.
"How do you do that?"
"Years of practice. Pocket, may I ask you a question?"
"Yeah sure. What's on your mind."
"Do you think...never mind, it's childish to ask."
"No go ahead."
"Do you think Demetri looks at me differently than the rest of you?"
"Besides the goo goo look I caught him giving you the other day?
"Goo goo?"
"Yeah, like lovey dovey kinda look."
Ali blinked and looked at her knee which was a few inches from her face though she was no where near uncomfortable.
"Why? Was that an answer you were hoping for?"
"What makes you think that Pocket?"
"Cause Sasa says that you would loosen up if you got laid."
Ali coughed as she tried to take a deep breath, loosing her balance she toppled to the right and landed on her butt looking up at the girl, her hair in a long braid this morning which was now hanging between her eyes.
"She said what?!"
"Look, I think it's a great idea, Demmy would be great for you. Besides, he seems kinda lonely lately. Always thinking to much if you ask me. Hope your not rubbing off on him."
"Your humor knows no bounds Pocket."
Pocket shook her head and walked out bumping into Demetri as she did so.
"She's just doing her stretches, sinks free if you wanna brush your teeth though."
Ali looked up from the stretch she recently dropped down into as Demetri walked in and to the sink to brush his teeth.
"So, I hear that someone says you could loosen up if-"
"You heard?! How much did you hear?!"
"Alex, calm down. You look like you heard a ghost. I was trying to say that it's easier to loosen your muscles and warm up if you have folic acid before a work out. What were you talking about?"
"Nothing. I just...it was nothing."
Before Demetri could ask the plane lurched and pitched to the side making Ali stumble into Demetri, she looked up at him as the plane pitched yet again, this time causing them backwards into the wall.
"Dammit!"
Righting herself Ali burst through the bathroom and pinned Sasa with a look.
"What are you doing?"
"I'm not doing it! You honestly think I would put us all in danger just for kicks?"
"Than what's going on?"
"I have no idea. I've been trying to figure that out but for some odd reason my powers aren't working."
"It was than that Ali realized it, she couldn't feel anything...from any of them, she tried to get a reading on Demetri and felt slight panic rise up as she got nothing.
"No..."
She looked around and was thankful that they were all already there, taking out her locator she cursed as she saw they were still miles from the contact point.
"We're jumping ship. get your gear and grab a chute. We'll be going in twos, Jeff Pocket, your first."
She watched as they gathered their things, securing the parachutes to their backs and lined up as Ali opened the door allowing air to rush in, they all could see that they were loseing altitude quickly.
"Go! We don't have a lot of time left."
Pocket and Jeff jumped, holding each others hands so as not to lose each other.
"Sasa, Demetri, your up."
Demetri stopped in front of her.
"What happened to going in twos, what about you?"
"Team leader always goes last. Get out of here before it crashes."
She shoved him towards the door, a chuckle making her look back over her shoulder as she did so.
"Well well, you figured it out rather quickly. I didn't think you would."
"Sybille..."
"And you've learned my name. How fortunate for me."
"How did you do this?"
"The plane? Oh that was easy. I killed the pilots. Pie really. After that gravity took over."
"What do you want with us."
She gave Demetri another hard shove trying to get him to jump before it was to late.
"Well you see, it's just you really. You see I have a gift. I can use any power after I see it, and yours...well it's kind of hard to figure out. So. I want you. If I get you I can have you teach it to me first hand."
"And what would you do with me?"
"I would take good care of you, I would bed you, keep you warm on cold night, make you were never lonely-"
He never got to finish, Ali heard the gust before she saw it as Demetri sent a blast of wind towards Sybille who only smiled and caught the blast like a baseball.
"Weren't you listening? Now I can use your power as well."
Ali watched horrified as Sybille took Demetri's blast and magnified it sending it back, she turned her back to the man and wrapped her arms around Sasa and Demetri as the blast hit. Her back burned as the powerful wind hit her.
"Alex!"
Coughing she blinked as her vision swam and darkness began to cloud the world around her.
"Get...off..."
The last thing she heard was Demetri's voice calling out to her as she passed out. [/color][/font]


[b][font="Book Antiqua"][color="#8B0000"]Alright, who ever posts after this, the next place we wind up is a desert about 20 miles from our contact point. Have fun![/color][/font][/b] Edited by Knuckles' Girl

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[size="2"]The sun was high in the sky when Marcus decided to go for a walk around the town he had been stationed in for this new mission. He wore his jacket with the hood up, everyone else in the town wore loose fitting clothes and tried to avoid from leaving their homes today since the heat was almost unbearable. For Marcus, however, he couldn't even feel the heat let alone the beating rays of the sun. A few of the runes on his body protected him from fire and, subsequently, the warmth of it as well, which in Marcus' eye s was a fair trade off for what he needed to do. A price he happily paid for the power he obtained, and he would need all he could get if he was going to keep going on with his missions.

The locals that were out gave him scared glances as they went about their day, they called him 'The Warded Man' in this town, and a few others he recalled said pretty much the same in their own languages and other sayings. The stares didn't bother him, he kept the hood up for their sake not his. He remembered a time when he use to feel self-conscious about his runes, about the looks people gave him and the fear in their eyes. In a select few of those stares he could see more than just that, it was the racing mind of someone trying to understand why he would do that to himself. They understood nothing of the blood he shed or the lives lost in pursuit of his former comrade, so much of that blood was his own and the lives were the people he couldn't save and their bodies piled far too high in his mind.

He quickly lost track of time, his mind pulling inward as he thought about where his lift had brought him. He regretted many things, covering himself in his runes was not one of them. He went back to the house that the HDF had constructed for him and any other operatives that came his way. From what he understood of these most recent orders, he would be assigned to this team and stay with them as long as they required him. He grew tired of his isolation, in his mind he was going to stay with this team as long as he could. He looked forward to being around people he could relate with better, especially since he understood they were all looking for the same thing. And Marcus would take all the help he could to bring down his former teammate, that was something Sybille never got when it came to their group and Marcus couldn't wait to finally get his symbol covered hands on Sybille's neck and finally have his mission over with.

When he finally made it back to the HDF housing unit they supplied he thought about how extravagant it was for only one person. But, they must of had someone at HDF headquarters that could see the future, and he was sure someone could see either the success or failure of his 10 year long pursuit. As far has Marcus was concerned, his success depend on him, and him alone since he believe his 'destiny' was set by only his choices and his own hands and maybe a nudge or two by the HDF set him the right way. The housing unit was easily three times the size of some of the buildings in the small town, built with six bedrooms, four bathrooms a living room that double as the main meeting area, a kitchen and a two car garage. The living room was complete with a table that was a computer and a plasma TV where they received video calls and could speak to their commander face to face. Each room had been initially barren of anything useful, Marcus's was the only one that was being used and he used it as a sleeping area and where he kept all his important files and information. The other rooms were outfitted only a few days ago to accommodate the others to their tastes, at least Marcus hoped they got them right.

When Marcus walked into the house, the sun was getting close to setting and he knew they would be arriving soon, so he prepared himself but undressing down to a simple loin cloth before approaching his closet, reaching in and pulling out his plain, hooded robe and slipped it on and secure it with a runed inscribed sash. He slipped on his sandals and went over to the desk in his room, he opened a drawer and pulled out a hand polished, wooden box that appeared seamless all along the box. The only things on the box were am assortment of symbols along the boxes sides. Marcus placed his first two fingers on a symbol and the box suddenly clicked open. He lifted the lid and pulled out his only modern weapon to check it to make sure it would fire if needed. The Desert Eagle had runes scratched into the gun itself, the symbols provided it a longer life and kept it from jamming, the symbols did wear after awhile and needed maintenance every few years or so to keep the marks fresh.

He placed the gun back into the box and sealed it back up, picking up the case and tucking it under his arm as he walked down to the garage and flicked on the lights and looked to the vehicle he would need. It as a fairly simple choice since one vehicle was built to hold seven people, the other only held three but was light weight and faster then the seven seater. The Seven seater, also known as the 'Grizzly Bear', was heavier and had heavy duty wheels made to tear through the dirt and sand of Egypt with a V8 engine that was tweaked and modified at that it easily produced 900 horse power.

Marcus gathered the keys for the Bear and seated himself in the driver seat, he set the box on the passenger seat beside him and opened it up again. Pulling out the gun and reaching over he pulled out a secret slide drawer that was fitted for his specific gun, along with several other compartments through out the vehicle to hide any weapons they needed storing. He placed the box behind his seat and was about to start the Bear when he hard a beeping noise. He looked to the center console and lifted the lid to see a small ear piece with mic attachment. He pulled it out and stuck it in his ear and clicked the small button.
[b]
"This is Warded Man, whats is going on HQ?" [/b]He heard only silence for a long time before someone spoke on the other end.
[b]
"Warded man? What the hell kind of name is that!" [/b]He heard his commander Hank yell on the other end, it always brought a smile to Marcus' face when he could drive Hank crazy.
[b]
"Locals tagged me with that name, thought it was catchy so I kept it. Whats going on commander?"

"The plane with the new team has gone off the radar, we are assuming the worst,"[/b] Hank went silent for a moment as he chose his next words carefully.
[b]
"We believe Sybille is following them."[/b] Energy flared through Marcus with those few words spoken, he took the ear piece out and tossed it onto the passenger seat and clicked a button on the dash where the radio would be and the garage door opened up, far to slowly in Marcus's opinion as he raced out the garage almost clipping the door as he punched the gas and peeled out to the outskirts of the city to reach high vantage point. He parked the Bear and searched through the vehicle for the binoculars they hid in these damn vehicles. When he finally found them he stood on the seat and looked out with the binoculars to see the plane in the distance, he just made out it going down and the shadows of parachutes in the sky. Marcus sat back down and set the binoculars aside and put the Bear in drive and stomped the petal down, the endorphins in his body were mixing with the magic flowing through his veins giving him the energy to drive forward as fast as possible. If he could get Sybille within reach now, it could all be over tonight, he only hoped it would be that easy.


OOC: Glad to be joining in on this, hope this will spur on some more posts.[/size] Edited by Dassem Ultor

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"ALI NO!!!" Demitri shouted over the rushing wind that still engulfed the inside of the plane, her unconscious body leaned against his while the giant held his place looking down, trying to shake her awake by any means, but nothing to avail. Sybille continued to laugh as he walked towards the three without flinching from the wind that swirled around the cabin, it would normally sweep any normal person off their feet and drag them into the sky life a plastic bag. Sasa reached for one of Demitri's pistols and began to fire at their enemy.

"YOU BASTARD!!!" She screamed. The girl was almost swept away herself by the wind herself until Demitri grabbed onto the back of her shirt neck and held her tight, the bullets strayed away from their target, but not naturally, they seemed to fire off by command away from their target.

"Oh, did I mention I've already killed Rebecca, the "Metal Queen"? She was quite the firecracker herself, that is..." Sybille licked his lips as he grinned. "I took care of her" Demitri's blood boiled as he stood at the door way holding his team mates in place while their enemy walked towards them casually without fear. Sasa finally grabbed hold of Demitri's belt for a better standing grip as she looked at her ally Ali, her hair blew in the win out of its massive braid, she was fearful of this man, that was for sure.

"Demitri, we need to leave now!" She shouted, but he already knew this and was thinking of an escape route, carefully he lifted up Ali from under her shoulders and handed her body over to Sasa, she took it with some struggle but supported her weight with Ali's arm around her neck.

"Jump,I can take him" Demitri snorted, Sybille merely laughed at the notion.

"He's gonna kill you Demmy, we leave together and we leave now"

"Or not at all" Spat Sybille as he used his newly learned metal power to crush their only exit, it the metal door began to crack and turn in a circular motion slowly, slowly closing off their escape route. Demitri noticed Sasa had one of the spare jump suit packs on her back.

"Sorry Sasa" Demitri shouted.

"Sorry for what?" Without hesitation he shoved the two girls out of the plane before the hole got too small. Sasa screaming some as she fell from the sky.

"NOOO" Sybille yelled as he charged the door, only to be met by a swift right hook to his face delivered by the giant soldier, stumbling back a bit he looked back at Demitri in anger. "Your blood will spill old man" Demitri simply smirked.

"Old man huh? Well chump, you've got a lot to learn about me" Demitri stood in his fighting stance, in the back of his mind he was focusing on the clouds, outside of the plane two small funnel formations drew closer to the planes descending location in the air.

"And what's that Wind wizard? You can't use more than one technique at a time with your powers, and I've already seen obtained a clear grasp of your abilities" Sybille stood upright again, forming a wind ball in his open palm. "She will be mine, and I will make her have feelings for me, not you. Once I've molded her to my will, I'll have her kill you fool" Demitri stayed in his place to concentrate on his attack, though his veins popped out of his muscular body by the sound of Sybille's intentions. Demitri would never allow that to happen, he promised her that, on his life.

"Obtained yes,but mastered? Never" Demitri only smiled as one of the wind funnel struck the other side of the plane Sybille's back was towards, ripping open a new exit path as both men were sucked out violently into the air, their bodies frailed around as they fell from the sky, the funnel damaged the plane bad enough to connect with its engine, in a large explosion only a couple of feet away the plane exploded. Demetri looked around truing to balance himself in the air for the parachute Sasa had, he could make out a small glimps of it as it got closer to the ground. Before he knew it the man was struck by Sybille's imitation wind blast, spinning the large soldier faster as they fell.

"Once you're out of the way fool, I'll have her and the others as well" Sybille yelled as he laughed maniacally, he suddenly disappeared like vapor water into the atmosphere, must have been a technique he stole from someone else. Demitri yelled as he came closer to the ground, he was finally able to face the surface but knew he was almost out of time. Reaching his right arm back the soldier gathered all of his strength to conjure some kind of push he would need to land without splattering all over the desert. The second wind funnel went away as a new image appeared to form next to Demitri's body, it was the form of an eagle's claw that stretched well beyond the soldiers body and continued to grow as wind collected. The rushing wind sent shivers throughout the soldiers body as he came closer and closer, finally seeing he was close enough, Demitri punched forward, sending the claw down onto the ground before he landed, the crash enough send sand and rocks up high in the air, in the mist of the rubble there was another crash that sounded loud,Demitri's body as he rolled onto his shoulder and continued to roll on the hot sand. Demitri yelped as he bounced over and over again until he finally stopped moving, his right arm had been dislocated and cut up by the rising rock and sand, Demitri was covered in sand and dirt as the soldier coughed and moaned in pain. Hair ruffled and uniform tattered by the wind and impact, but he was still alive.

"Well..." He hissed, at least that last minute plan worked" Demitri laughed to himself for a moment before hissing more in pain,after a while he struggled stand up, but finally was able to as he held onto his disabled shoulder looking around, he saw nothing but sand and rock. He could make out anything besides the environment, and the sun was nearly setting in the distance. "I'm sure I saw them go that way, or maybe it was the other way..." The soldier looked around, he decided to go with his best judgement and walk westward after seeing that the explosion from the plane still lingered in the sky, but that was going east. Ripping shreds of his shirt uniform, Demitri wrapped his bleeding arm the best he could before jogging to his destination. "So...Sybille is his name. I'll remember that punk" Demitri spat blood onto the cooling sand as he walked.

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[i]No... Demmy, no![/i]

Sasa's eyes widened in fear as she held tightly to Ali's limp form. "You idiot! You ******* idiot!" She screamed back at the plane as her form dropped rapidly, sped by the extra weight. She swallowed and focused as her powers returned; a modicum of peace returned to her mind as she released her parachute, noting that they still fell faster than they should.

[i]We'll be okay. Gods, I hope Pocket and Jeff are all right.[/i]

The ground came up at her at frightening speed and her feet jarred into the earth with an impact she felt in her teeth. She rolled, Ali's still unconcious form tucked against her front to protect her from injury. The pair came to a stop and Sasa lay there, breathing hard, eyes closed against the grit from the sand. Forcing herself to roll over, she placed Ali carefully on her back and checked her for injuries; there were none. [i]Well, that's good at any rate. But I can't lug her around...[/i]

Searching her person, she found the remains of their walkies. [i]That's an easy fix.[/i] Her eyes unfocused as she searched with her mind for the necessary pieces to fix the walkie and reattached them. The whole thing fit back together seamlessly, and she sent a jolt of power through it; it crackled. Messing with the settings, she called, "This is Arisa. Pocket, Jeff, do you read me?"

There was silence for a moment before she heard, "Sasa! Where are you?"

Pocket. Always so perky. "My map is broken; give me a minute and I'll tell you."

She pulled out the locator, which had also been damaged on impact and began rearranging the parts. "Broken?" Pocket sounded incredulous. "What do you mean?"

Sasa was silent for a minute as she finished repairing. "I'm about 15 miles south of the contact point. You and Jeff come find me; I'd better stay put. I'll tell you when you get here. Hurry."

There was silence on the other end, and Sasa knew her teammates were on their way. [i]Let's just hope we're still here when they arrive.[/i] She settled back, retrieving her gun from it's holster and laying it across her lap to wait.

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[font="Comic Sans MS"][color="#000080"]Ali groaned as she came to, the sun was almost behind the horizon now and the air around her was starting to cool down quickly. She could hear voices, a couple she knew and one she didn't, cracking open her eyes she looked around slowly due to the immense pain searing through her skull. Sitting up she held her breath and pressed her hand against her forehead.
"What happened? Where are we? Are we all alright?"
"Ali! Your alright!"
Ali gritted her teeth as Pocket threw her arms around the older woman and held on tight.
"We were so worried about you."
Ali pushed Pocket off gently and looked around, Jeff, Pocket, Sasa and a new member who must have been their contact were all in sight, the unknown man had a hood over his face so she couldn't make him out but she took note of everyone and stopped as she noticed Demetri missing.
"Where is Demetri?"
Sasa stopped talking to their contact and looked at her than at the ground.
"He stayed on the plane with that man...the one who was after you."
"He what?!"
Despite the surge of pain moving caused her she rose from the sand and brushed her self off, she looked east to see a few wisps of smoke rising and instantly began to move in that direction, reaching out with her powers she felt a faint spark of emotion in the distance.
"I have him, the rest of you go with our contact, I'll go and find Demetri. As soon as we regroup we'll start the mission."
Pocket took a step forward, ready to argue.
"This is an order, I have some scolding in store for Demetri anyway. He was foolish to put himself in danger like that. He's vital to the team and we can't afford to lose him."
Sasa snorted behind her and put a hand on her hip.
"You mean he's vital to you?"
Ali whirled around and pined the girl with a hard look.
"If that were the case do you think I would have shielded you from that blast as well? If it was just him I would have protected him and not you. I care for all of you and I would let no harm come to any of you while I still had breath in my body. This is why I'm telling you all to head out while I find him. You will all be safer if your with- I didn't catch your name."
"Marcus."
"Marcus. He knows this area and he knows these people. Now, get moving. Hand me a couple of cloaks and we'll meet with you as soon as I find him"
She caught the thick heavy cloaks that were thrown to her as everyone piled into the vehicle Marcus had brought with him, he looked down at her.
"Are you sure about this? If Sybille is after you he won't stop."
"If I know Demetri he gave that little **** something to think about. He won't be showing up again for a little while. Get moving."
She watched as the dust settled and the group disappeared over a sand dune and turned throwing one of the cloaks around her shoulders she began moving east heading towards Demetri's signal. It took her hours due to the wind burn on her back and the headache that was now pounding in her temples but she trudged on til she saw a shadow moving towards her over one of the dunes in the distance. Reaching out she sighed as she felt the gaurded emotions from none other than Demetri. She raised her hands above her head and gritted her teeth in pain, waving her hands back and forth she took a deep breath.
"Demetri!"
"Ali?!"
She dug her feet into the sand and ran towards him as he slid down the side of the dune, meeting in the gully between the two she stopped and waited til he approached her, she could see the caked and dried blood on his arm and the bruises beginning to bloom on his skin. She reached out and took his arm as he reached for her, his large hand cupping her face as he looked down at her.
"Your alright?"
She nodded, gripping his wrist tightly.
"You?"
"I'm fine, nothing to bad, where are the others?"
"I sent them ahead, with Sybille gone I can find them with no problem."
"Sybille..."
She frowned as Demetri spoke the word with a small growl in his throat, he shook off what ever gloom had come over him quickly and gave her a small smile.
"I'm glad to see your alright Ali. I was worried about you."
"Just a little wind burn, that's all."
"Let me see."
She looked up shocked at the demand.
"Demetri, I said I'm fine."
"And I know my powers better than anyone, that blast you got hit with was a powerful one. Let me see it or I'll pin you to the sand to do it."
"Ugh. Fine."
Pulling off the cloak she turned and showed him her back, her shirt scorched and torn as if fire had struck her, feeling Demetri peel the shirt away from the wound she hissed and rolled her eyes.
"Oh for the love of- Hold on a moment."
Keeping her back to him she peeling the shirt off, her bare back exposed to the cool air, goosebumps rising on her skin.
"Are you alright with this?"
"Just do what you need to do."
She jumped as she felt his finger tips grazed her skin around the wound.
"He got you rather good. You'll have a good scar there."
"Am I bleeding at all?"
"No, thankfully. The blast cauterized it almost as soon as the wound was made. Good thing too otherwise you'd be dead on your feet."
"Wouldn't want that now would we."
He didn't answer as he put a hand on her shoulder, the warmth from his hand making her shiver.
"Are you able to move Demetri?"
"I should be asking you that."
"I'll make it. We should get moving, it's getting colder."
She handed him one of the cloaks over her shoulder as she pulled her shirt back on, once covered she pulled on her cloak and began to head back the way she came heading for the others.
"So Demetri, I have a question."
"Ask away."
"Back on the plane when Sybille was talking about taking me-"
"I don't want to talk about that."
Ali blinked as he cut her off and walked past her continuing on the path they were walking, she hurried up the hill as best she could, tripping and sliding down the hill she yelped as a large arm wrapped around her waist and pulled her upright. She looked up to see Demetri looked down at her, feeling her cheeks heat from the blush covering her cheeks she thanked him quietly and slipped from her grasp. Reaching the bottom of another dune she sighed looking up as starts began to litter the sky.
"It's getting colder by the minute. Do you by any chance have your phone on you? Or did it get trashed?"
"I think I still have it battery is almost dead though."
"Enough for a text?"
"I believe so."
"Send one to Sasa telling her we're camping. It's getting to dark to see and it's getting to cold to keep moving."
"Done."
Ali sat down on the sand and looked around seeing small, dry bushes here and there.
"I wish we were lucky enough to find an oasis or something."
Demetri only nodded as they began to gather the dead foliage and build a small fire, enough to keep the cold from them for a little while. As the night continued the small fire began to wither and soon snuffed out leaving them in the dark. Ali felt herself begin to shiver as the cool air surrounded her and within moments Demetri could hear her teeth chattering from where he was. Ali closed her eyes and brought her knees to her chest trying to use her own body heat to warm her self til she felt a large arm wrap around her shoulders and pull her close to a hard body. Almost instantly she sighed as warmth flooded from Demetri to her and she leaned into him to get warmer.
"Thank you."
"Your chattering teeth would have given us away to anything or anyone hunting us."
"Your so funny."
She closed her eyes, her head resting on his shoulder slightly as sleep began to take over, a part of her more than aware of the position she was in but her need for warmth over riding any form of embarrassment. She let out a contented sigh as her body temperature returned to normal.
"I'm okay now Demetri. Thank you."
"You'll just end up getting cold again if I move. I'll stay here to keep you warm if that's alright."
Her mind bogged down by sleep she wrapped an arm around his waist as well and leaned into him more relishing the heat he was putting off.
"I wouldn't have it any- other way."
Her sentence cut mid way with a large yawn as her eyes closed and she drifted to sleep.[/color][/font]

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The phone at Sasa's hip beeped. She jumped, startled, and then opened it to scan the text from Ali. Her eyes narrowed. [i]Dammit all to - [/i] "Pocket, Ali found Demetri but they're camping. Bloody stupid idio[size=1]tic moron of a[/size]..." Her curses turned to mumbling as she shoved the phone back into her pocket and winced; the fall and cushioning Ali's body had left her with bruised ribs, a sprained wrist, and she was pretty sure she'd hurt her foot somehow.

A scowl on her pretty face, she turned back to face the two in the back. "So what do we do? Marcus?" Her eyes slid to their contact, hoping for help. She really didn't want to leave the two of them alone in the desert. Alone was fine; alone in the desert after the attack was not.

Pocket looked nervous. "Ali's our team leader, she knows what she's doing."

Sasa's eyes narrowed. "I'm not a part of your normal team, remember? I'm a specialist; I was assigned to help you. If this guy comes back while they're alone, it'll be MY tail on the line for not doing my job."

Pocket chewed her lip and said nothing. Sasa looked back at Marcus. "So. Any ideas?"

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Marcus looked around constantly now that he knew Sybille was close. He had received sporadic reports of operatives who died in the field due to mysterious means, usually over run by some horde of creatures or something that wasn't absurd. But he always heard about a pale man who was always around during their deaths, every witness he questioned revealed that same fact over and over again. He had a fair understanding of some of the powers he had stolen, but he never could be too prepared, his runes protected him from almost all sorts of things and it was easy to observe since his runes created beams of light wherever contact was made. Other things simply dissipated when they got to close to him or cause other effects he had heard of when he had spared with other HDF members. He pressed down on the gas, sending the Bear tearing through the sand as he rushed back to the housing unit.
[b]
"I think we need to drop of items of burden first before we go back."[/b] He simply said as he tried to push as much power and speed out of the Bear to get back as quickly as possible. Sasa was right in being concerned for their safety out in the harsh sands of the Egyptian desert. Pocket spoke up rather quickly after his statement.
[b]
"I can just store all of our stuff in my mind, Marcus."

"Aye, I am aware of your power Pocket, I'd like to keep your head full of only the necessary items, we have far too much equipment with us and i understand you gain sever headaches that could hinder your performance. And I would like to keep you at your best."[/b] Marcus made a sudden turn and they were in the town and quickly were at the house when he pulled up to the garage and tapped the console to open the garage. He set the Bear in park, but left the ignition on and jumped out of the car, everyone else followed suit and walked inside.
[b]
"Just set everything down anywhere, we will place it in your appropriate quarters when we return. Wait here please."[/b] Marcus hurried back to his room and went into his desk pulling out a few clips of spare ammo he had carved runes into for back ups. He returned to the crew and handed each of them a clip.
[b]
"These will help if Sybille returns or if any of his creatures appear. These won't kill Sybille, but they will make him think twice."[/b] Jeff just gave him a cold stare as he simply handed his to Pocket, Pocket nodded as her clip vanished into her mind along with Jeffs and Sasa pocketed her clip and they all readied their weapons. They all went back into the garage and Marcus scooped up the keys for the Dune cat and tossed them to Jeff.
[b]
"Now, I have an idea so that we can catch Sybille off guard if he shows up. Jeff and Pocket will take the Dune Cat and head west, i want you to circle around Ali and Demetri's location, Sasa and I will take the Grizzly Bear and we will head straight for them. Hopefully everything goes well and Sybille keeps his distance for now if it doesn't then at least we have you two in reserve. Anyone disagree?" [/b]He got a small shake of hsi ehad from Jeff, Pocket didn't say much as he saw the anticipation in her eyes of finding their leader and their win warrior.
[b]
"That seems like a decent enough plan to me. Lets get moving then."[/b] Sasa said as they all hurried to their vehicles with Sasa jumping into the driver side seat and Marcus taking the passenger. Jeff had the Dune Cat started up quickly and had her racing out of the garage, out of the town and into the desert sands. The Grizzly Bear fell behind the Dune Cats speed but still pushed forward hard. They rode in silence for a few minutes before Sasa spoke up.
[b]
"Before we get to Ali and Demetri, I'd like to see your face. I see that your hands are covered in marks, but you hide your face pretty well."

"My apologizes, it has been sometime since I've been around HDF members." [/b]He pulled of his hood and revealed to her his tattooed exterior, he saw something of slight surprise in her eyes to see his face covered as much as his hands.
[b]
"Pretty intense for you to cover yourself in tattoos like that. Hope its for a good reason."[/b] Marcus grinned, the sudden flash of white across his almost black face easily drew attention.
[b]
"Aye, it is indeed. Otherwise I would have to draw every single rune i knew for my powers, this way I can just strike out and something always happens."[/b] Sasa turned her eyes back to the sands before her as they sped through the desert.

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The harsh winds of the desert brushed against the two soldiers as they laid on the ground close to one another, Demitri's cloak whipped in the air, snapping like a wound up wet towel. The cloth was very thick for the large man, enough for him to stay well heated and more, giving him ample amounts of comfort while he held Ali close to keep her warm and safe, Demitri looked down for a moment and saw her hair covered her fair as it blew with the wind that caught it, taking his hand, he moved some long strands to see her sleeping pale face, she was cold and obviously hurt beyond imagine after the wind blast delivered by Sybille. He was sure their rough crash landing did some damage internally. Demitri still covered her and kept her close, hearing soft moans of pain and relief as her body shifted closer to his. Within minutes, the wind suddenly stopped, the sand stayed in its place and there was a calming nature that surrounded the area. Demitri took off his hood to inspect the area, nothing but darkness now that their small camp fire had extinguished hours ago, the brunt twigs flew away when the storm came to them, sitting himself up painfully, Demitri inspected his arm. Swollen at his shoulder socked from the crash landing he had, it was also bruised and cut from the earth that struck him upon impact, but since he could hardly feel any pain from that area it bothered the giant not. Looking down again he could see Ali shivering slightly, standing up slowly Demitri took off his own cloak and placed it over her body for added warmth.

(She's o.k for now, but we need to make a break for the town we were suppose to make contact at) Demitri thought as he looked around, he found the path they needed to take westward, they would need to hurry soon before another wind storm came upon the two. Shaking his head some, Demitri flung some sand out of his hair and brushed himself off with his good hand. (Maybe a little wind help would work best) He though, taking his hand he tried to conjure up some gust to clear his tattered uniform, but nothing came to his aide. Trying again as he used all of his focus to draw some power in the element, nothing came to him. It stuck the giant as odd that nothing was working, but then he got a sense of urgency when he put two and two together. Quickly dropping to his knees he removed the cloaks off of Ali and lifted her up with his good arm, forgetting the pain on his sore side, placing her over his shoulder was easy, he could still keep her semi warm while he held on tight. Demitri looked around quickly to find a dark shaded area, he found a couple of rock formations to his right and made a mad dash for the area, once he got close he noticed a small dune opening underneath a well shaded rock, diving as quickly as he could he held onto Ali as tight as his body would let him as the two hit the ground hard rolling to their shelter. Finally they stopped as Ali stirred from her slumber, still wounded and weak from her pains she woke in a loud groan, Demitri quickly covered her mouth with his large hand, shocking the woman to life as she struggled some to breath.

"Hush" he whispered to her, she finally adjusted to the night's light and made out his face, she relaxed as much as she could, but her powers were of no use to her. "I know...he's here" Sudden panic struck her as Demitri brought her in for a hug, they both peered out of their little hiding spot to see if anything was approaching, only their cloaks remained on the ground as a shadowy figure approached the fabric. Underneath the cloaks, the form of two lumps of sand mimicked their bodies as Sybille looked down upon them, without hesitation, he extended his palm and sent several shots of something shiny, but sharp into the larger sand dummy. Laughing loudly, he made his way towards the smaller sand dummy, Ali and Demitri watched in suspense of his action.

"Whoops, what a shame. Old man needs to learn to keep his guard up." Sybille shouted, hoping that Ali would stir from her sleep and wake up, the non reaction surprised the man as he reached down and grabbed the cloak, sending it behind his back as he roared in anger that she was not underneath. But he quickly collected himself and calmed once again, looking around the area. "No worried, he may have thought of this clever decoy, but I wonder if he knows about my training with Hank." Demitri and Ali got a sense of urgency as they saw Sybille kneel down and place his palms on the sand he stood on, nothing was happening until he looked over at their hiding spot and smiled big. "FOUND YOU" He shouted as he began running towards their direction, sending slices of wind towards the rocks, making a clean cut as they broke down the structure, Demitri held Ali's head down and covered her body from the onslaught, one wind slice attack barely missed Demitri's head as it passed above the two. Demitri rolled to his right, grabbing Ali by the back of her shirt neck and took her as he rolled, there was a small passage that they took to get out from under the rocks. Once again, the soldier lifted his team leader over his shoulder and started to sprint, hearing the rock formation collapse behind them as dust and sand rose from the ground.

"Demitri, he's not after you, get out of here" Ali yelled, her voice weak but still clear enough to make out, Demitri ifnored her plea as he heard another wind attack pass by the two, the shots roared past them like a fan at a NASCAR game would if they were front row as the cars raced by. Demitri began to bob and weave out of the barrage of blasts.

"Bark bark to you too" He yelled, he was getting tired but thankfully he couldn't see the dark dune before him as his foot lost its ground making the two rolled down the hill, just as several shots fired at after they fell. A critical blow if they were to be caught by them, Demitri and Ali yelled as they bounded and slid down the rather tall sand dune . Ali seemed to be in more pain when her head hit a couple of times, once they got to the bottom she was dizzy and disoriented, Demitri finally made it down to join her, but he landed on his dislocated shoulder as the man screamed in pain, rolling onto his back as he held his sore shoulder.

"D-Demitri..." Ali gasped for air, she stumbled a could of steps towards his direction before falling to her knees, she placed her hands on the ground gasping for life. Demitri looked over and saw his team leader struggling, hissing in pain he sat up and for to his feet. Once close enough he dove to Ali's side and scooped her body up with is one arm, cradling her close to his chest. "Please...do as I say and lea-" She panted for more air before she could finish her statement. Demitri leaned against the dune hill as he could see Sybille's dark figure at the top, peering down into the dark abyss.

"Ali, don't give up on me, I still have air in my lungs" Demitri hissed in pain as he tried to keep quiet.

"But, but he'll kill you" She closed her eyes as pain shot through her head like a bullet, the thought and the immense pain drove her over the edge, Demitri noticed something as he held her, she was whimpering and cowering at the thought as she held onto his shirt tight. She was scared, without her powers she couldn't remain calm and collective like she usually is.

"Not without a fight, you know that Alex" Demitri brought his head down and brushed his forehead along the top of Ali's head, it was comforting to the man but he knew she was unconvinced by the words. She looked up into his eyes for a moment, they were getting watery. "Alex..." Demitri sighed as he leaned forward and planted a dry kiss onto her lips, Ali's eyes sprang to life, but something was wrong. She suddenly felt tired and drained, along wit her feelings of surprise, but something was defintiely wrong. When Demitri withdrew with lips from her's, a small strand of air followed him and left from Ali's mouth and into his own. Her head lazily drew back as Demitri swallowed the air he sucked out of her, leaving his team leader unconscious. The man was also confused by what had happened. "Wait...I took the air out of her...my powers are back, but ho-" Before Demitri could finish, gunfire could be heard at the top of the dune, that and engines from a heavy sounding vehicle. Demitri looked up and saw bright lights standing still, sand explosions and gunfire was all that was heard from the very top. There was a fight going on. Demitri looked back down at the woman he held tight in his arms still, her head cradled by his bent arm, his heart beated rapidly as he leaned down once again and planted a softer kiss onto her lips, quick, but it lasted a lifetime to the man as he broke the kiss as he felt himself blushing slightly. "Not without a fight". Struggling to get up, the solder placed Ali over his shoulder again as he made his way up the dune, more explosions could be head as they got further and further to the top.

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