1
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 13 Pt 3
2
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 13 Pt 2
3
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 13 Pt 1
4
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 4
5
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 3
6
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 2
7
Bye Bye Forums. Hello… TG Consortium forums
8
Devil’s Due (Revised)
9
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 1
10
Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 11 Pt 2

Archive

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 13 Pt 3


Official Report
Oak Creek Apartment Building
New Hebron, California

Sapphira grimaced and shivered as a gust of cold air greeted him. He climbed out of the agent’s Yamato Ante and glanced back at the vehicle with a shake of his head. Everything about the car exuded femininity, from the too-quiet whirr of the engine to the dark shade of violet. It was not a man’s car, at least not in Sapphira’s mind and for someone who’d had his masculinity assaulted it was like he’d climbed out of the personification of his transformed body.

“Damn hybrids,” he grumbled under his breath as he watched Amelia walk around the car toward him.

The agent shivered and tucked both hands into her coat pocket. “Damn it’s cold.”

Sapphira nodded, but didn’t reply, electing instead to crane his neck around to look up at his old apartment building. It had only been a few days since he’d last stepped inside, but it seemed like much longer. He glanced at the agent as she approached and without missing a beat stepped in sync beside her.

He felt his eyes widen as he approached, realizing the extent to which his eyesight had failed him in his twilight years as got a better look at the building. The place was far more run down than he’d ever remembered. He gritted his teeth and moved past the dirt stained windows and discolored walls. In its heyday the apartment complex had been for middle-income families, but the area had fallen on hard times, like most of the city and as a result had become host to a much lower income bracket. Like it or not that also meant a higher crime rate.

Sapphira had only come to live there within the last few years and not for, what one would expect to be, the most obvious reasons. Money was not an issue and hadn’t been for a long time.

The agent moved forward, but Sapphira stopped, remembering the time on the Ante’s dash and moved in the exact opposite direction with quick, furtive steps. If he hurried maybe he could…

He never finished the thought, but rather took off running, feeling his heart hammering inside his chest as he rounded the corner. Amelia called after him and dashed forward in pursuit, but with his enhanced capabilities, she stood little chance of keeping up.

He ran for two blocks and stopped when he caught sight of the University. He paused, long enough to marvel he wasn’t winded at all, and glanced across the busy intersection. The light changed, and he stepped forward choosing his steps as he made his way across the street.

Located just a few blocks south of one of the worst crime areas in all of California, New Hebron State University was also, one of the two rated schools in the state. It was his old apartment building vicinity to the college, not its rental cost or even its proximity to his daughter’s place of death, that had attracted him to the area.

He heard Van Den Broeke, coming but didn’t pause or wait for her. The time for explanations would come, but there was a chance he could catch site of his intended target before she made her way into the building. Sure enough, a familiar vehicle appeared rewarding his efforts. When he saw that familiar Yellow Secura pull into the school’s parking lot, he a smile stretch across his face.

“Hailey,” he whispered the girl’s name, fighting back tears as he watched her climb out of the car and make her way into the school, oblivious that he was watching.

“Who?”

Sapphira spun around to face the agent who was standing there blank expression on her face and breathing only a little heavier than usual. To have caught up and only seem the slightest bit winded, Amy must have been in amazing shape.

The exemplar swallowed hard and craned his neck around just in time to watch the girl step inside the school and let out a long sigh before returning all his attention to the agent. Amy folded her arms across her chest, arched an eyebrow and gritted her teeth. “Liv, an explanation would be nice.”

“Hailey’s my granddaughter,” he shook his head and walked back the way they’d come.

“Your granddaughter?” The agent asked, lurching forward so she could step in sync with the other exemplar. “You know it would be inappropriate for you to ma–”

“She doesn’t know me from a can of paint!” He snapped back at her before she complete her statement.

With a sigh, he gritted his teeth, closed his eyes and shook his head before they snapped back open and he fixed his gaze on the agent. “Hailey was raised by her father’s parents. Her dad was pretty much useless… He got himself killed, in some work place accident, after my Clara become pregnant, but his mother and father seemed to be decent enough folk and a whole hell of a lot younger. After that bastard killed my daughter and put a bullet in my hip, I couldn’t get around. So they–”

“Raised her,” Amelia finished this time, she was the one to cut Sapphira short.

Sapphira nodded his lips trembling as he fought back tears. What the hell was wrong with him? Damn female hormones were turning him into a blubbering fool. He cleared his throat and tried to steady his voice as he resumed speaking. Once or twice his voice wavered, and he knew he had failed to mask the pain. The agent, was a sharp one, and he doubted she’d missed it. She said nothing.

“I used to write to her, when she was little, but I got no response and one day, I received a package in the mail. Her other grandparents had sent back every single damn letter unopened. I gave up after that. When she got older, and I figured she was old enough to start college, I hired a private eye and sure enough, I found out she was going to school here,” he said throwing a thumb over his shoulder without looking back.

“I took it out into my head I would become a presence in her life. I thought maybe with my final few years, I could find some happiness again. So, I moved my ass out here, found an apartment, even went so far to buy her some flowers, but then I saw her…” He shook his head and felt his lips tremble. “She looks just like her mother, could damn well be her twin. I’ve tried damn near a dozen times and I always chicken out. So, I memorized her routine and I keep watch over her. At least, I can make sure she stays safe. It’s more than I ever did for her mother.”

In other circumstances, Amelia might have found the statement disquieting and his behavior stalker-esque, but she could sense nothing but good intentions from the other exemplar. A fear which she understood all too well motivated him. She had no one in this world, Alex the closest thing she’d ever found to a soul mate had left her, her parents and siblings had disavowed any relation to her and her aunt, the one relative who had cared for her, had passed away just a few years ago.

She put a hand on Sapphira’s shoulder and smiled. “It’s hard, I know.”

They both paused and looked into one another’s eyes. For the briefest of moments, the two understood each other at a level that would never have been possible without their bond. Both saw within one another, a very lonely soul. Each had lost so much and both had had their lives changed by factors neither could control.

Sapphira coughed and through his hand over his shoulder, this time back toward the apartment building. “We gonna do this thing or not?”

“Yeah,” Amelia nodded and cleared her throat. “Come on.”

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 13 Pt 2


Official Report
427 Evergreen Terrace
New Hebron, California

Not long after Sapphira, dressed, hair brushed and sporting a towel around his head stepped out of the bathroom. He felt his cheeks burning and feared the agent might take notice, assuming it was even visible on his dark cheeks, but then he realized that it was a moot point. She must have sensed his emotions through the bond, he had no hope of hiding such things from her.

She seemed almost amused when he stepped into the kitchen. Her face was blank, but there was enough mirth being projected through the bond, that Sapphira was certain, that Amelia knew what he’d been up to in the shower. He thanked his lucky stars they could not read one another’s thoughts. It would be so much more problematic and embarrassing for both parties involved.

He avoided making eye contact, instead spotting and moving toward the coffee maker. He turned his back to the agent and cast his eyes about. A rack under the cupboard held the mugs, and he took a moment to compose himself as he retrieved a cup and poured himself a drink.

He gripped the mug in both hands, sighed and turned to face Amy who had seated herself at a little dinette just a few feet away. He paused, gritted his teeth, and sat across from the agent, not daring to meet her gaze.

His hands slid across the table, gripping hold of the sugar dispenser and was about to pull it toward himself, when a hand reached out and clasped itself around his. He jumped and jerked back, his seat sliding back several inches and looked up meet Amy’s gaze.

“Sorry, didn’t mean to startle you,” Amelia smiled, pulled her hands back and slid them under the table.

“Don’t worry about it,” he mumbled under his breath and shook his head as the agent’s face stretch into a smile. He paused, his heart leap in his throat, struck by just how pretty she was when her face lit up. He licked his lips and frowned. “About what happened when I was in the showe–”

Amy winced, held both hands up and Sapphira stopped mid-word staring back at her with wide eyes.

“Please, I have a good idea what you were up to and what you do when you’re alone is your business. Just, do me a favor, let’s not talk about it. This whole thing is strange enough without adding that discussion to the equation. If either one of us does it, we don’t talk about it, okay?”

“Okay.” Sapphira nodded and looked down before snatching up the sugar dispenser and pouring far too much of the sweetener inside. Sapphira intended to never do it again, but was just a little disconcerted to find that despite his resolve a considerable part of him wanted another go at it.

“Thank you, by the way, for the mall, if you hadn’t healed me… Well, let’s say the prospect of having my arm in a damn sling for weeks, if not months, on end doesn’t sound pleasant,” she said staring into her empty mug.

“And if you hadn’t shot that bastard when he was coming at me, I might be six-feet under the ground right now. I think we’re even,” he answered back bring the coffee cup up to take a long sip and almost spitting it out when his mouth filled with its saccharine-sweet tang. Was it him, or did the brew taste a little funny? He might have gotten a little over-zealous with the sugar, but something told him that wasn’t it. Then he realized, he had a different mouth, with different taste buds. No wonder it tasted strange.

The agent nodded and smiled back at him. She thought of mentioning that he had saved her from Kwrump too, but pursed her lips and kept her mouth shut. She got the sense he would downplay any such response by the other exemplar.

“So.” She cleared her throat and changed the subject. “We need to talk about your belongings from your previous life.”

He blinked and leaned back in his seat. “You don’t mean to say I can keep some of them, do you? I thought the whole point was to make a new life for myself.”

“It is, but AEGIS isn’t heartless, the agency realizes that sometimes people need a piece of the past to hold on to before they can move on to their future,” she replied smiling back at him. “We’ve made arrangements to have your assets transferred to your new identity, minus some expenses. From what I understand you have quite the nest-egg, which should help you re-build your life.”

“Expenses?” He leaned forward and gritted his teeth. “What expenses?”

“Did you read the papers you signed? It was all listed in the contract. You don’t think AEGIS is a charity, do you? We can only do so much with the money the government gives us. We have funds set aside for those who cannot pay themselves, but even then without the help of certain, wealthy beneficiaries we wouldn’t even have that. For people like you, who have the money, it falls to you to flip the bill.”

Everett fell back into his seat and shook his head. He might have questioned the legality of what the agent had said, but he knew it was a moot point.

Everett Howard was dead, speaking from a legal standpoint, his property should have gone to his closest living relative. Though he liked the idea of Hailey inheriting his possessions, he was a realist and realized that he needed funds to start a new life. AEGIS would not flip the bill when there was already money available. Besides, they were a government agency, if they were doing it, they’d make it legal.

“I get your point,” he ran his hands through his thick tresses and folded his arms across his chest. “When do we get this show on the road?”

“Today, if you want. I can be ready inside an hour. The sooner we get this done with the better.”

Sapphira nodded. “All right, let’s get to it then.”

 

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 13 Pt 1


Official Report
427 Evergreen Terrace
New Hebron, California

Sapphira’s eyes snapped open, and he sat bolt upright fists swinging, but his blows only met empty air. Which was fortunate because given his enhanced strength he might have injured someone. He sat there panting for a moment, then closed his eyes and took slow deliberate breaths.

Memories of Kwrump’s attack were still vivid in his mind, and remembrances of the fight dominated his dreams. He’d even re-witnessed his daughter’s death, but this time the great brute of an exemplar had been the one to kill her.

He let his eyes flutter back open, sighed, shook the hair out of his face and glanced down at his chest. His breasts were large and firm, the that damn near any woman would be envious and most any man would love to get his hands on. He cupped them, sighed again, and slid his hands down the side of his body.

Most women these days seemed to think they needed to starve themselves, to be beautiful, but Everett never understood that line of thinking. Women had curves for a reason why try to deny what nature had given them? His new form, was the sort any man would drool over. He had curves in all the right places, not that he was overweight.

That didn’t make him feel any better. In fact, it only made the whole thing worse.

He stood, pulling the shirt he’d slept in over his head with both hands, unfastened the hooks on his bra and moved across the room. When he reached the opposite wall, he stopped in front of the full-length mirror that donned the wall. The woman who looked back at him, didn’t resemble the old Everett Howard, in any sense of the word. The only way in which her appearance mirrored his image of himself was the scowl that marred her beautiful features.

He cupped his bare breasts and glanced toward the door, worried that Amelia might intrude upon his solitude, but the door remained closed. He still wasn’t sure how to process the events of the previous night, he’d inherited a set of powerful abilities from Ashtar, but they were unreliable and difficult to control.

After, he’d healed the agent, they’d both sent escorted off to the hospital, and upon waking from unconsciousness the doctor informed him they were both in perfect health. The oddest part was that Amy’s shoulder showed no sign Kwrump broke it.

It was late when they’d arrived back at Amelia’s place and by then the Agent had just enough presence of mind to show him to his room before the two of them both collapsed into their respective beds in exhausted heaps.

He couldn’t guess the time, he saw no clock and had yet to acquire a wristwatch, but if the sunlight spilling into the room through the blinds was any sign, it was well into late morning. In over fifty years he hadn’t slept past seven on more than a few occasions.

He glared at his reflection one final time, re-clothed himself, minus the brazier, retrieve a fresh outfit from the shopping bags he’d thrown in the corner before slipping out of the room. He came face to face with Amelia, who had a mug of coffee clutched in her delicate hands.

“God Dammit” She exclaimed and took a few furtive steps back avoiding splattering the front of her shirt with coffee. “Didn’t expect you to be up. I was just about to check in on you.”

“Sorry if I startled you,” he said, and scratched the back of his neck and grimaced, almost yelping, as his nails tore into his soft skin.

“Don’t worry about it. I’m a little extra jumpy after last night. There’s a fresh pot of coffee in the kitchen if you’re interested,” she said throwing a thumb over her shoulder, motioning down the hallway.

“Gave up coffee years ago,” he muttered under his breath and then added, “High-blood pressure” as an explanation, but paused when he realized that didn’t apply to him any more.

He bit his lip, his cheeks burn as he looked about the hallway, before holding up his chosen apparel for the agent to see. “I’d love some, but, first, if you don’t mind, I always start my day out with a nice hot shower.”

She took a sip from her mug and nodded to the door on her left. “Knock yourself out. Bathroom’s just right there, there are clean towels on the right side of closet and fresh soap in the bottom drawer of the vanity. You can even use my shampoo if you don’t mind smelling like lavender meadows.”

Sapphira watched the agent take another sip from her mug and scuttle down the hallway. When she’d disappeared from view, he pushed the bathroom door open and swung it shut behind him.

He closed his eyes and pulled his shirt over his head. He tried not to focus on the way his breasts jiggled when the fabric caught on them, but he might as well have tried to stop breathing. His eyes snapped back open and he let the shirt fall from his fingers.

He pursed his lips as his hands slipped around the waistband of his jeans. The button and zipper were familiar enough, but as he slid the pants down from his waist, he damn well saw a difference. He’d never, in his many years, worn a pair of slacks that were so form fitting. The saleswoman at the shop had called the damned things skinny jeans, and he understood why.
It took more work getting them off than he was accustomed. He had to guide them down his hips and legs, all the while hopping back and forth, before he pulled them free. A set of simple white panties followed, falling free with far more ease, something for which he was grateful.

He looked down at the pile of clothes on the ground scowled at them and glanced at himself in the mirror. His eyes took in the site of his erect nipples, he scowled and folded his arms across his chest. The exemplar shivered, retrieved a bar of soap and a wash cloth from inside the closet and stepped into the shower, sliding the frosted door shut behind him.

He fumbled with the unfamiliar faucet, at first, but steaming hot water rained down on him in no time. It wasn’t the first shower he’d taken since being transformed, but it was different in one significant way. Before, he’d clenched his eyes shut throughout most of the process and struggled hard to pretend that everything was as it should be. This time, he was letting reality setting in. He was stuck as a woman. He’d best familiarize himself with his new anatomy as much as it galled him to admit, even if it was just to himself.

He glanced down at his breasts and frowned, his heart pounding inside his chest. It was bizarre cruel twist of fate that had put him in this situation to begin with and try as he might he couldn’t come to terms with it.

He lathered his breasts and forcing his hand to make slow and methodical movements. They jiggled each time he brushed against them or he scrubbed hard enough. It was an odd sensation, but one with which he would have to become accustomed. He might have been a woman, but goddamnit, if he would be a sissy crybaby about it.

When he finished, he moved his hand away from his breast, moving up and down his body, caressing every curve and every inch of his voluptuous new form. As he did so, he became more and more aware of something that was unexpected. His explorations aroused him.

His sex drive had been, for the most part, non-existent for over a decade and now to have it return with such intensity, and worse, in such a strange new way, went beyond disconcerting.

Without even realizing what his hands were doing, he found that his index and middle fingers were inches from his vaginal cavity. He froze, biting his lips and his heart still hammering inside his chest.

What the hell was he doing?

He almost stopped altogether, but as he stood there, warm water splattering upon his now erect breasts, he had a thought. One which made his cheeks burn, all the more.

What if Amelia were to walk in on him?

That didn’t seem to be a showstopper. His heart beat harder and he slipped his fingers inside the opening and shivered at the sensation. He moaned and closed his eyes calling out the agents name.

What would have been a quick and nonsexual self-exploratory shower became much more prolonged and much more erotic affair. He became lost to the slow sensual movements of his hands, one plunging fingers in and out of his opening the other, rubbing his nipples.

He might have gone on for hours, if it weren’t for a series of dull thuds against the hollow bathroom door, that snapped him out of his masturbatory explorations.

“Liv, you all right, in there?” Amelia’s voice called, muffled and dull, through the door.

“Y-yeah,” he called back, but his voice faltered. He cleared his throat jerking both hands away from his body.

What the hell had gotten into him?

“I’ll be out in a minute,” he called again and gritted his teeth forcing away all thoughts of the agent out of his mind.

Given her vicinity that proved to be difficult, but he steadied his breath and concentrated on finishing his shower. As hard as that proved to be the humiliation at being found out, was more than enough incentive to keep him from giving it another go.

When Sapphira stepped out from the shower he dressed himself. He didn’t glance in the mirror or pause, even when he experienced the still unfamiliar sensation of an emptiness between his legs when he pulled his panties into place or his breasts pushing against the fabric of his t-shirt.

Once dressed, he pulled his hair out of his shirt, the wet strands dampening the shoulders and back of the blouse. He had been an old-fashioned kind of man, but he had been a single-father raising a daughter by himself. He knew what was necessary to maintain longer tresses like the ones he now sported. Soon, he told himself, he would get a haircut and get his locks shorn down to a length just a little easier to maintain.

With a sigh, he glanced at the mirror and searched through Amelia’s vanity. There he found what was looking for, a brush. He gritted his teeth and glared at the dark-skinned woman in the mirror, one more time, before he got to work. As much as he hated what he saw, he wasn’t about to let his hair get tangled and matted. He’d never experienced it himself, but, as a single father, he had a good idea, from experiences with his daughter, just how unpleasant that might be.

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 4


Official Report
Fairhaven Mall
New Hebron, California

“That was unexpected.” Matthews eyed Kwrump’s remains and turned back to Sapphira who stood there mouth agape staring at the puddle of, what appeared to be, water with unblinking eyes.

“What the Sam Hill was that?” Sapphira asked rounding on Matthews who’s look of nonchalance seemed out of place.

“I should think, you would seem to be the better person to answer that question.” Matthews raised a single eyebrow and let the barest hint of a smile touch his face.

Everett scowled at the man and gritted his teeth all the while muttered under his breath. Matthews raised his eyebrows more than once during Everett’s long tirade of mumbled slurs and insults, but did not speak a word.

Everett spit out the last of his vitriol and Matthews shook his head and watched him go traipsing off toward Van den Broeke. Matthews wasn’t fond of Sapphira’s brand of racism, but he would not let the former old man get to him.

He furrowed his brows, turned away from him and strolled toward what remained of Kwrump.

Matthews wasn’t the most expressive fellow to begin with, and while many of the agents who worked below him respected him, some saw him as a cold and distant figure. It wasn’t so much that he was heartless, but he believed, that being their superior required he maintained a professional distance.

Matthews knelt down produced a standard-issue vial, and the accompanying set a of vinyl gloves from within his tactical vest. He retrieved a sample, careful not to get any on himself and slipped the tube and its contents back inside.

The liquid looked like water and had no discernible scent, but if Matthews had learned anything in his time with AEGIS, was that, where exemplars were concerned, when something looked and smelled ordinary, it seldom was the case.

The water, for lack of more definite label, must hold a clue as to Kwrump’s nature or at least his death. Matthews stood and glanced back over toward the exemplar now known as Sapphira Scott and eyed the young woman with lips pursed. 
His breath caught in his throat as he marveled at her beauty and for a moment he let himself forget who the other exemplar was. She looked so innocent, so pure, and because they appeared so close in age he was reminded of his daughter. When he remembered who the girl really was, he tasted bile in his throat. It made him sick. Not because, he had once been a man, but because of who he was at the core of his being.

His superiors were right to worry about Scott and, while he shared their concerns, he had been with the agency long enough to have seen the after effects of dozens of Kwrump-related attacks. If Sapphira had not been present, the brute might have killed dozens, including Van den Broeke. Some would call such actions heroic, but Matthews wasn’t so certain if that label fit.

Sapphira may have been acting out of self-preservation for all he knew, but he would give him the benefit of the doubt for the time being. He would keep a close eye on Scott. His attitudes were a continued concern and he more than justified such attention, but if he had been acting out of altruism than it suggested there may be something more to him than met the eye.

He might get better insight from him when he took his statement, but that would come later. The other agents on scene would handle the little details. For now, Agent Van den Broeke was his primary concern.

He adjusted his tie and moved toward the cluster of people centered around Amy. Two agents stood guard, following procedure in a hostile environment and keeping a perimeter around her, a third had knelt down beside her on the opposing side from Sapphira still adorned in his exemplar accruements, eying the exemplar with wide eyes. Matthews, paused pondering the costume. AEGIS did not issue superhero garb, nor did the encourage exemplars to don it. He doubted that Scott had taken or even had the time, to stitch together such an outfit, nor did he surmise he would want to. It seemed likely that this was a byproduct of his abilities.

He resumed walking and knelt down in front of Van den Broeke once close enough. “How are you doing, Agent?”

Amelia, looked up at him, her face glistening with sweat and grunted. “I’ve been better.”

“Amelia,” Sapphira put a hand on her good shoulder. “I’m sorry, if I hadn’t fouled-up none of this would have happened.”

“Not your fault,” she gritted her teeth and clenched her eyes shut.

“Agent,” Matthews said straining to keep his voice even. “An ambulance should be here soon.

“Just tell me when they come.”

She exhaled one long breath and then all the strain in her face melted away as she faded into unconsciousness. Sapphira, slipped a hand over the side of her neck below her jawline attempting to check for a pulse, but, before his fingers found the right spot, he froze. It happened without warning, the connection between the agent and her charge flared to brilliant incandescent life.

Her mind, seemed distant and far removed, almost absent since she had blacked out, but he became aware of her in ways he hadn’t before. He felt her heart beating, her lungs fill with air, her blood pumping inside her chest, and so much more. He sensed her injuries, foremost among them her shoulder. Kwrump’s attack had fractured her entire shoulder, not just the collarbone.

He didn’t even know what he was doing until his hands had gripped hold of the Amelia’s shoulder. The agents arrayed around them cried out, attempting to dislodge Sapphira, but only one of them was an exemplar and none had strength anywhere approaching his. Warmth spreading out from his hands, followed by a sharp burst of pain. Blinding white-light filled his vision.

Her bones fused back together, piece by piece, melding back together with searing white-hot heat. It was no small mercy that the agent had lost consciousness, she would have experienced pain the like of which she had never experienced in her life. Sapphira was not so lucky and caught the full brunt. He remained awake, just long enough to sense the Agent herself returning to consciousness, before succumbing to the pain himself and descending into darkness.

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 3


Official Report
Fairhaven Mall
New Hebron, California

By then all the denizens of the mall had fled, save for Amy and Sapphira. Had it not been for her injury, the agent would have stopped them before they left or else gotten their information so they could be contacted later, but she couldn’t string two words together let alone form a coherent sentence.

When help arrived, Sapphira focused on holding the giant with single-minded determination, stood in place. Sweat dribbled down his face, rolling down his forehead and stinging his eyes. Somehow, he kept them open, never removing his gaze from the giant, daring to blink or budging a single muscle. It was all he could do to keep Kwrump held in place, but somehow he managed.

Three armed agents burst into the scene, each armed with semi-automatic weapons and looked ready to give hell to whoever or whatever stood in their path. Sapphira saw them out of the corner of his eye and he did not dare turn to get a better look for fear of breaking his concentration. It wasn’t until the foremost approached that he realized that the man was, in fact, Matthews.

“Well,” he said, with his too-deep voice, holstered his weapon, slipped both hands in his pockets and turned to eye Sapphira. “You seem to have everything under control Miss Scott.”

Sapphira scowled and shook his head, but did not turn away from his captive. “I don’t know how much longer I can keep this up. If you know any way to subdue this bastard, I’m all ears.”

“We haven’t had much success dealing with Kwrump. He appears every couple of months and wreaks havoc and disappears just as suddenly. I believe it’s something he and Chemosh would seem to have in common.”

“You’re not suggesting a connection, between… Kwrump and Chemosh, are you?” Sapphira risked a glance at the other exemplar, panting between words. It was getting harder and hard to hold the brute in place.

“No.” Matthews shook his head. “Kwrump seems to exist to wreak havoc and nothing more. He does not ally himself with other exemplars he just destroys everything in his path. Chemosh is every bit as destructive, yes, but he seems to have a motive that goes beyond simple destruction.”

Sapphira, bit his lip nodded and returned all his attention to Kwrump and narrowed his gaze. If these dumb shits with AEGIS were unable to contain such a threat, then it fell to him to put an end to his rampage. In his previous life, and in particular his early years, Everett Howard had never been one to solve his problems with his wit. He had been the sort to confront problems head on, letting his passions lead him, which had gotten him in trouble more than once in his many years. What he needed to do was something more subtle, something which was beyond him.

Marveling that such a simple creature would necessitate such deep reflection, he stood there staring at the big brute for the longest time, trying so hard to come up with a solution. The longer he held on the more difficult it became and he worried he was loosing his concentration.

The solution came to him as if whispered upon the wind. It was a memory from the distant past, something his mother had been so fond of saying. He had never put much thought into those words, but somehow they held a particular resonance with him in that moment and all at once he knew what he had to do.

‘If you can’t control the current of the river, then don’t fight it, just go where it takes you.’

He reached out again touching Kwrump’s primitive mind. This time, at the brink of collapsing from the exhaustion, the sheer force of his malevolence almost overwhelmed him, but he gritted his teeth and fought to keep hold.

The reason his previous efforts had failed was that he had attempted to force his will upon Kwrump and this was a creature he could not force or coerce. Instead, he did the one thing all his instincts were screaming at him not to do. He released all his anger and hate and cleared his mind.

All at once, the battle against the malevolence within Kwrump ended. His desire for destruction was still there, but it no longer impeded Sapphira. He reached deep into the others’ mind, delving past all the chaos and anger and found something that didn’t belong, another presence. He understood how to stop the great brute. The other mind, was distant, separate from Kwrump, but also linked.

He started off slow, building a barrier between the pair of consciousnesses, layer by layer. He did not understand, what he was doing or if it would even work, but he had to try. Kwrump let out a low moan and thrashed about, but he remained in the air. A moment later as the last few pieces of the barrier snapped into place Kwrump let out an intense agonizing scream and collapsed to the ground.

Sapphira’s connection to his mind, came to a very abrupt end as his almost eight-foot frame bulged and swelled with violent intensity. For the briefest of seconds, his remains, now a huge unidentifiable flesh-colored and gelatinous husk, wobbled about upon the ceramic tiles and then it exploded outward over four hundred pounds of clear liquid splattering in a wide radius around where his body had lain.

Sapphira lifted his hands up, just in time to keep the substance from splattering his face and spun about to face Matthews who had been close enough to the watery explosion that it had drenched him. When he glanced back at the spot where the great brute had lain, nothing remained save a puddle of liquid.

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 2


Official Report
Fairhaven Mall
New Hebron, California

Once again, Kwrump proved why he was so often referred to as an unstoppable force. No matter how much he bled, no matter how many times his opponent pounded him into the ground or riddled him full of holes he kept coming. Experts could not explain how or why, he continued on when by all rights he should have dropped dead dozens of times over. Even more baffling, every time he appeared he seemed to disappear into thin air a short time thereafter. Even Sapphira, who tried his best to avoid anything or anything to do with Exemplars, knew of Kwrump.

The longer the two fought, the more Sapphira became convinced that he would have to try something a little less conventional. He was already so far out of his realm of expertise that he’d run out of ideas. If only he could read the other’s mind and…

Wait? Could he?

The great brute lurched forward, and Sapphira held his hand out and licked his lips. He reached out, but nothing happened. He dodged a series of swinging swipes from the giant and turned to watch him go barreling past.

Gunfire blared from across the room. Amelia, retrieved her weapon, somehow reloaded it with only one arm and was using the back of the bench to help level the weapon as she took aim. Kwrump came to a sliding stop and watched the Agent pepper him with gunfire. The giant glanced back at the Sapphira and back to Van den Broeke.

Sapphira focused, clearing his mind and taking a deep breath. Kwrump’s hesitation gave him the opportunity he needed to steady his thoughts and bring them under control. It was difficult with his heart hammering inside his chest and his hands shaking, but somehow he managed it. All at once, his awareness came into sharp focus and he became aware, not just Amelia’s feelings, but those of Kwrump, a young man and woman who’d spent the entire confrontation hiding inside a mall kiosk, and a pair of security guards one injured and the other frozen in terror.

Sapphira moved forward, not once realizing that his feet left the ground and that he was hovering just a few inches above it, and held his hands out. From Kwrump he sensed new resolve, and determination and when he lurched into motion toward him, it did not surprise Sapphira.

The longer Sapphira read his emotions, the less he became convinced he was dealing with a thinking reasoning man. His emotions though powerful, were almost infant-like in their simplicity. He could make decisions and even reason out simple problems, but the rage that fueled him was all consuming. Whoever or whatever this brute was, he was not acting on a rational level. All he wanted to do was destroy and cause mayhem. He needed to stop him, innocent lives were at stake.

Sapphira’s mind flashed to the night of his daughters death, watching her die while he bled out on the ground beside her. Over the years, he’d played the events over and over in his mind so many times he’d lost count, wondering if there was something more he might have done. If he had, perhaps, Clara would still be alive that day. Here, he saw an opportunity to prevent even more death.

His hands still extended Sapphira reached out, digging deeper. He gasped startled by the intensity of what he found within. The Giant’s thoughts were almost too primitive, but the rage that fueled him burned so bright it was almost inhuman. There would be no calming the malevolence within this creature. They would have to snuff it out. Not through use of violence that fueled him and made him stronger. They must use other means, but as he strained his mind, he could think of no way to defeat the giant.

Again, he used his telekinesis to halt Kwrump and lift him from the ground. Moving across the room he met the brute’s gaze and turned back to the agent, between gritted teeth, sweat beading down his face. “I think, maybe, I can hold him like this for a while, but you need to call for backup.”

Amelia grunted in pain, dropped her gun and slipped a hand inside her jacket. She produced her phone and bit her lip. “Already. Done.”

The agent was in a great deal of pain. Sapphira suspected adrenaline may have been what allowed her to open fire on the other Exemplar, but now it had faded, she didn’t look like she’d be much help in a fight. She clutched at her shoulder, and stared into the open space between them, her teeth gritted, and sweat dripping down her brow in great rivulets.

Sapphira, lipped his licks, shook his head and focused all his attention on Kwrump. Short of defeating him for good, it was up to him to keep the brute in line until back up arrived. He only hoped his powers didn’t fail him again and unleash Kwrump. If that happened, he shuddered, there was no telling what might happen.

 

Bye Bye Forums. Hello… TG Consortium forums

So it appears that the forums were a total and utter flop. I guess I should have seen that coming. That being said I’m really hoping my newest attempt is better received. I’ve created a forum on a seperate site and, no, this time it has next to nothing to do with me. Okay, so it does to a small extent, but the focus is very different.

These forums are called the TG Consortium Forums and it’s largely a place where TG content creators across mediums can interact and bounce ideas off one another or even critique one another’s creations.

If that sounds interesting give it a peek. Even if you don’t create tg content, but are interested in giving constructive input then you are very welcome. So come on down and have a looksee. You won’t regret it.

Devil’s Due (Revised)

Author's Note

Since, it’s Halloween I thought I’d take a break from our regularly scheduled serial posting and share a story that was just perfect for the occasion. While not exactly new it’s almost a complete rewrite, and is more than double the length than the original. I’m finally going to bring this story into the official cannon for my open universe Tales from Meridian (the rules of which can be found by visit the open universes page.) The original can still be found on this site, but it will forever remain a standalone and not part of the Meridian-verse.

I’d always heard stories, we all have. I mean, I didn’t think they were real. Who really does any more?

The devil was about as real to me as the Tooth Fairy or Santa Clause, but then something happened that shot all those perceptions to hell. I’d met a woman, a beautiful one, and she’d offered me everything I’d ever wanted and more. At first, I was skeptical, but then she showed me things, amazing and terrifying things and I didn’t find it so hard to believe anymore. Truth be told she terrified me, but when I saw what she could do, I wanted in and so I signed on the dotted line and I accepted her price, my soul.

Had I understood what that meant, I never would have agreed, but I was young and stupid. To me a soul was just a word. What she promised seemed to be too good to pass up and what did I get in return? Money and fame. Who would turn that down?

Within hours of our deal, I got a call from a casting director saying that she wanted me to audition for a part. Whatever doubts of the authenticity of the woman’s claims I might have had were promptly vanquished. Meridian, the town I lived in was dinky, and I’d never once traveled outside of it. I’d never aspired to a career in acting and I had virtually no presence on the web. For a big Hollywood casting director to call me out of the blue was damn right improbable if not outright impossible.

So, I took the first flight out of that little shit hole and never looked back. Long story short, I got the part and I rose to fame. Money, big houses, fast cars, and even faster women. I had it all and I even trashed a few hotel rooms as stereotypical as that might sound. Just when I’d settled into my new life of glamour and luxury she came to collect for what I’d promised her.

It was night, and I was more than a little drunk. I staggered out of the bathroom, Belvedere bottle clenched in my hands as I lurched my way through the house and into my bedroom where my latest conquest was waiting, but soon discovered that, she appeared to be missing.

“Aimeeee,” I called out dropping the bottle and cursing as I danced around the broken shards.

“I believe her name was Alisha,” A voice spoke, and I swirled around tottering around on my feet before I finally managed to do a complete one-eighty and face the intruder.

I cursed the moment my eyes caught sight of her and backed away pointing my finger at her. I stepped on several shards of glass, but I was so caught up by my terror that I barely felt it. “Y-you!”

“Yes, me,” she smiled advancing on me. “It’s time to collect what you promised Adrian, do you remember?”

“No, no, no!” I screamed at her. “It’s too soon, too soon! Do you hear me?”

“Really? When did we ever specify an amount of time? I think what you’ve been given is certainly enough. Haven’t you enjoyed all the attention that you’ve received? You certainly seemed to have been enjoying Aimee. I know had enough fun watching you two go at it.”

“You were there?” I stared back at her with wide eyes still just a little woozy from the alcohol, but sobering up more and more by the minute.

She crooked a finger and stroked my cheek. “Of course, I’ve been here with you this whole time poking and prodding in the direction the Lady Satan wished and I must say you’ve performed just as expected. A little boring, really, but it seems to please my mistress so I suppose it’s all worth it.”

“You can’t make me go to Hell! I won’t go!” I screamed crossing both arms across my face in some vain hope I could shield myself from her unholy powers. “I’m not gonna burn!”

“Oh, honey,” she let out a soft, almost soothing little laugh. “You don’t actually think Hell is all fire and brimstone, do you? It’s a metaphor silly, not everything in that silly little book is meant to be taken literally. Eternal damnation is much, much more interesting. You wouldn’t be so lucky in any case. The Lady Satan has big plans for you. You really think we’d go to so much trouble of purchasing your measly little soul just to spend eternity torturing you in the deepest recesses of hell?”

She snapped her fingers, and he felt his body stiffen. I stared up at her, eyes wide and cursed myself. Never once had I thought to ask what my punishment might be. Somehow it had never seemed to matter.

She snapped her fingers a second time and I could feel my whole body begin to snap and contort. I collapsed to the ground clutching at my burning insides begging her for mercy. At first, there was only pain, all consuming and mind-numbing, but when I felt my chest begin to swell I screamed out, not in agony, but shock. I touched my new budding breasts, and quickly slipped my hands over my dick as it began to wither away. When it was all finished, I looked up at the she-demon, and shook my head.

“Why?”

She knelt down in front of me, smiled, and stroked my chin. “Your soul belongs to the dark mistress for all eternity.She doesn’t waste resources, but sometimes they need a prettier wrapper to really bring out their potential. I happen to think, you make for a very lovely succubus, don’t you?”

I swallowed hard and stared up at her with wide eyes. She took a few steps back and I climbed to my feet feeling my clothes slithering around on my body, becoming something far more fitting to my new form.

“Now dear, the nights still young. There are still plenty of souls about for a pair of she-demons like us to lead in to temptation, wouldn’t you say?”

I bit my lips, looked down at my breasts which looked ready to pop out of my skimpy little dress and felt a slow smile form on my face.

“Yes, Mistress.”

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 12 Pt 1


Official Report
Fairhaven Mall
New Hebron, California

With as much muscle Kwrump displayed on jos massive frame, a person might expect him to be slow moving, but he moved with the swiftness of an Olympic runner. He caught Sapphira off guard by his sudden charge and he came hurdling into him the moment he was back on his feet.

If he’d had a longer start, he would have hit the other exemplar with enough force to send him flying across the mall. As he had only been a few feet away, he’d only picked up enough momentum to send Sapphira tumbling to the ground. It was enough to knock the wind out of him and he went careening sideways into a nearby garbage bin.

Kwrump loomed over his victim, a grin stretch across his blood splattered face, and Sapphira moaned in pain and clutched at his chest. Had it not been for Van den Broeke, he might have met his end there that night.

Amy opened fire drawing Kwrump’s attention away from Sapphira. It gave him the opportunity he needed to get away. Not recovered from the attack, he staggered forward teetering on his feet as Kwrump advanced on the agent. More gunfire followed, and he shook his head bringing both hands up to grip the sides of his head. The lights flared overhead, and it was all he could do to keep his eyes open. His head was throbbing, and he thought perhaps he might lose his lunch.

While Sapphira stood there in a disoriented haze Amelia emptied another clip into Kwrump’s chest. Each bullet hit, producing splatters of blood every time, but somehow the giant never seemed to notice.

Though she was moving back the entire time Kwrump advancing toward her, he was gaining ground. Amy gritted her teeth, and reached into her jacket for another clip, but before she grasped hold, her aggressor charged forward and slammed into the agent pinning her against the wall. She screamed out as her left it threw her shoulder back and into the wall, producing a sharp crack.

Her gun clattered to the ground from numb fingers, and all she watched heart hammering in her chest as the aberrant pulled back his fist preparing for another strike. She closed her eyes, knowing such an attack from Kwrump meant almost certain death. When the blow never came, she opened her eyes only to find him standing there motionless his fist still pulled back.

Kwrump slid back, still frozen in position, and Amy fell to the ground clutching at her fractured shoulder. She blinked, confused, but comprehension dawned on her when Sapphira resplendent in his superhero garb stepped between the two.

“This ends now.” Sapphira threw his hand out and Kwrump went soaring away, but he tightened his hand into a fist and the giant stopped hanging in the air, still in the same position he’d been in when he’d been so close to pummeling the agent.

Sapphira gritted his teeth and growled out a single word. This time putting every bit of force into it he could. “Sleep!”

Again, his command failed, and Kwrump fell slamming down a strong enough thump to crack the ceramic titles and shake the floor. This time, prepared for the possibility that his abilities would not respond, Sapphira did not hesitate, but rather readied himself for another attack from the giant.

Kwrump was back on his feet before the other exemplars were able to blink. Not one for planning strategies or thinking thoughts more complicated than ‘Kwrump smash’ or ‘Kwrump bash’ the giant was all too predictable. He came charging toward the pair of them smashing everything and anything that got in his way.

“Hey you big dumb brute! Over here,” Sapphira called, waving both hands over his head just before he took off running. His telekinesis might have been unreliable, but his physical abilities seemed to work just fine. Both moved with a speed beyond that of any ordinary human. That being said. Kwrump was fast, and Sapphira was faster.

Kwrump took the bait coming up behind him as he led the other away from the injured agent. Sapphira led him down through the corridors past store after store before stopping in front of a large stone wall. He waited for the giant to come and once he did Sapphira leapt out of the way, Kwrump tried to backpedal, but with the momentum he’d already picked up it was impossible.

He smashed into it with such force that entire wall came crashing down around him in a cloud of dust and bricks. For a moment, Sapphira let a grin stretch across his face, believing he had, perhaps, defeated the other exemplar, but that smile faded as the dust cleared and Kwrump’s gigantic frame rose from amongst the debris.

“Ah hell,” Sapphira cursed between gritted teeth and took off running once again. This would not be as easy as he’d hoped.

 

Psyren’s Redemption | Ch 11 Pt 2


Official Report
Fairhaven Mall
New Hebron, California

Several hours later, a re-clothed Sapphira stepped out of the last shop, just a little haggard from the new onslaught against his masculinity. Undergarments had been just the start it and that alone had taken close to two hours. Buying an entire new wardrobe took much longer. It had been so time consuming, in fact, that most of the outlets in the mall had already closed up shop.

They’d been at it the entire day, only stopping long enough to purchase and consume a meal from the food court, but only after the agent assured him it did not count as his meal of choice. The agent had been patient, more patient, perhaps than her charge had deserved, but even she looked worn out by the time they had finished shopping.

She’d led the once old man from store to store, purchasing only items he approved, with only two key exceptions, a dress and a pair of flat dress shoes. Neither were frilly nor extravagant, but they were feminine. More so than the slacks, and t-shirts and blouses that composed the bulk of their purchases.

“You’ll want something for special occasions,” she’d said by way of explanation, but no matter how much he nodded and made a show at agreeing, there wasn’t a snowball’s chance in hell he’d ever wear a dress out in public.

The entire day had been miserable for all parties concerned, but there was a sense of anticipation bubbling within Sapphira. He’d spent the entire day being led into store after store and the entire process had left him terrified of what was to come. To distract himself, he’d been ruminating over where and what he would eat when the agent took him out for his promised meal.

He was a steak and potatoes sort of man and that was a prospect that seemed very appealing. He’d had an old favorite back in the day Murphy’s Steakhouse, but it had long since closed its doors, the owners retired and passed away. To this day, it was the bar by which he compared all other steaks. Few had even come close, but even the crap he’d tasted in the food court had been more flavorful than anything he’d consumed in years. He had high hopes for the meal.

As they walked toward their exit, more and more stores were closing for the night, most times slamming security gates shut with more force than seemed necessary. The mall seemed quiet other than that, perhaps too quiet.

They were among the last out and as they came within sight of their exit, a scream permeated the air, echoing through the almost empty space and making it impossible to determine the source. Soon enough, the heard footsteps pounding against the tiled-floors and a man who was more than likely an exemplar judging from his size and the speed at which he came rushing toward them.

“Shit, it’s Kwrump,” Amelia grimaced and glanced back at her charge. “Get down.”

Sapphira complied flinging his body behind a garbage can and dropping his arm full of bags without consideration for where they might go. She produced a little 9mm pistol from inside her coat, rounded on the aberrant and yelled at the top of her lungs. “Freeze, AEGIS!”

The man, stopped cocked his head sideways and grinned from ear to ear and came tearing toward her. “Kwrump smash!”

“Dammit,” Amelia opened fire, and dove out of the way when he got close. Kwrump lumbered forward unable to stop his forward momentum and smashed through the security gate of one store, tearing through the reinforced metal as if someone had constructed it from twigs.

When he arose, blood smeared his chest and limbs, but it didn’t seem to hinder or deter him as he lumbered forward once again. She continued firing, each bullet splattering into his chest, but despite the wounds he did not seem impeded. In fact, it seemed to make him angrier. The agent emptied her clip, discarded it, and popped in a replacement one from inside her jacket without looking at what she was doing. Sapphira knew the agent was very familiar with the weapon.

Kwrump tore though the mall, obliterating whatever lay in his path whether it was a bench or something larger, like a retail kiosk, nothing seemed to stop him and, worse yet, no matter how many bullets the agent pumped into him, he kept coming.

Sapphira saw this, understood that if he did not act, the agent and perhaps everyone else within the mall might die. He was unsure of his new powers or their true extent, but he knew with no doubt, that he could stop the rampaging menace. He hesitated, only a moment, afraid that his actions would reveal him as an exemplar and his new identity uncovered. Amelia’s life was in danger that mattered more than anything.

He rose to his feet, not noticing when his hair shimmered and gleamed, in an instant changing color to the same brilliant sea-green as Ashtar’s locks, nor did he seem aware that his clothing did the same, a plain blouse and jeans glistened and became a one-piece green and black suit complete with a cape and upon his face a simple black domino mask. Save for the hair it was all an illusion. Sapphira’s mind, had generated an image of what he might look like in such a getup the moment he had learned he was an exemplar, influenced in part by his brief, but life-changing encounter with Ashtar, and fed by his fears of recognition his subconscious mind had brought that image to life.

“Stop!” He threw his hand out, and the giant did just that, freezing in place like a statue.

He gestured upward and Kwrump floated off of his feet and into the air above, his body still frozen in position. He hung there in the air murderous intent mirrored in his eyes, but even his mouth remained still. Sapphira, clenched his fists and approached the beast of a man a scowl marring his beautiful features.

“Sleep,” he said the words with an edge in his voice and just like that the giant came crashing back down to the ground mobile, and even angrier than before.

In the blink of an eye, he was back on his feet and before Sapphira could even think to act, Kwrump had already pounced.

Daniel A. Wolfe © 2017-. Theme by Meks. Powered by WordPress. Random Fact and Arbitrary Quote powered by Factoid Widget © October Productions