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Thread: Now the story is told

  1. #1
    Alpha Flight
    Mokole's Avatar
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    Default Now the story is told

    It was late in the summer. Walter Langkowski liked this time of year, harvest, shorter days, students getting bored of.... Suddenly, his thoughts were interrupted by a person he hadn't seen for over a year: Dr. Eileen Krypt. She sat on a bus bench, watching him intently, as a small group of teens loitered nearby. She motioned for Langkowski to join her. She looked tired, very tired. He crossed the street and sat down.

    Langkowski: Hello, Eileen; it's been a while.

    Krypt: Almost 14 months now. How are you?

    Langkowski: Same old, still running my projects, delving into new research areas...

    Krypt: Yes, I must congratulate you on your epigenetic causational formula; in a few years it could become the basis for a whole new set of treatments.

    Have you spent any time, you know, being Sasquatch?

    Langkowski: Without Department H or Alpha Flight there isn't many ways I can be of use as Sasquatch.

    Krypt: Maybe so, but you still go out for a spin now and then.

    Langkowski: When I can help. What have you been up to? I'm sure you've been in demand since Department H was shut down.

    Krypt: You'd think that [she heaved a heavy sigh]. But once Department H was brought down I found I'd become irrelevant in some circles, a pariah in others. Being with Department H for so long did me no favours.

    [Krypt falters. She is clearly in ill health]

    Langkowski: Eileen, what's wrong with you? Should I call an ambulance?

    Krypt: No, no, don't go to that trouble. [she winks at Langkowski] If I need any help I'm sure you'll take care of me.

    [Affecting a more serious tone, Krypt turns to face Langkowski]

    My illness is one legacy of my time at Department H. Huxley was never the most organized worker, and cleaning up after him made several of us sick. Unfortunately, my prognosis is not good. Luckily I do have a more positive legacy to leave behind.

    Langkowski looks at her suspiciously.

    Langkowski: You've used the term 'legacy' twice. I'm sure that's no accident.

    Krypt: No, I"m sure I'm being plain.

    Langkowski: But you weren't the driving force behind what happened to Adrian, Arlette, and the rest!

    Krypt: They weren't my legacy. They were Huxley's.

    Langkowski: They were the product of the Beta Project, an attempt to collect and augment the powers of mutant children...

    Krypt [laughing] You believe everything you get emailed? Investing in Nigeria next?

    Langkowski: Those children weren't normal mutants, not like any I've seen. The way Flex's powers fluctuated, Jared couldn't control his almost at all, Arlette's....

    Krypt: No, they weren't normal mutants. I would go as far to say they weren't really mutants.

    Langkowski: They carried the x-gene in their mitochondria...

    Krypt: Yes, but it had been put there. Besides, that wasn't...

    Langkowski: Who? How?

    Krpyt: I have no need for secrets now. Let me tell you how it all happened...

    I was a genetics researcher for many years. One day I get a call, the government wants me on a 'special assignment'. That's when I first met Huxley, Killebrew, Cornelius...

    Langkowski: Weapon X.

    Krypt: Yes, yes, but please don't interrupt!

    We were to work on evaluating the Weapon X subjects. Soon enough Killebrew was in charge. He wanted to try and turn regular people into mutants, in his own style. The man was always a bit off-kilter.

    Huxley and I were moved to Department H's precursor. Huxley's specialty was microbiochemistry. The man had talent but wasn't focused, he couldn't keep his mind on any one project. Weapon X, Helios, the Beta Project, Weapon PRIME, he jumped from place to place.

    The Beta Project was actually mine, until he usurped it. My superiors wanted their own version of the Weapon Program, called the Beta Project. It was mine. We arranged for the orphans at Hull House to get a measured dose of gamma rays, to make their DNA more....pliable. But once we did that Huxley swooped in and took over. He used a viral vector to insert x-gene's in all of the children.

    Five died in days, 6 more within the year. We wouldn't know if any of them were x-gene mutants for years, not until they 'harvested'. Only 8 ever did, and two of them died. The rest lost their mutancy on M-Day.

    My plan was to create augmented humans, not mutants. Future memories, better physical skills, faster healing and adaptability, the like. But that idiot ruined everything. Or at least I thought.

    When he was moved to Department K I was made the physician at Hull House, to monitor them as much as anything. I knew before anyone who carried the x-gene and who didn't. And I took my chance with the best subjects to restart the Beta Project.

    Langkowski: How could you do anything after Huxley's manipulations? Your window of opportunity had to have passed. What did you do to open it again?

    Krypt: Nothing. Huxley's bastardizations left the door open. I was able to run my experiments on 15 children. Unfortunately 3 died and another 8 did not respond to my genetic augments. I admit my mistakes, 3 deaths in the name of science is no excuse, but... Langkowski was no longer looking at her, or listening. He was staring intently at the four teenagers hanging around the bench. Two buses and come and gone and they hadn't moved.

    Langkowski: So you're the improved humans, then. You are the Beta Project.

    Krypt: Well, I guess you were going to figure it out sometime. Claire, John, Kateri, Kellen, say hello to your new boss.

    The four youths nodded at Langkowski. He nodded back and turned to Claire.

    Langkowski: Lilli's friend.

    Claire: You got it.

    Langkowski [turning to Krypt]: Boss?

    Krypt: Who else? CSIS is no place for them, there is no Department H, and I certainly am not going to let SHIELD have them, they don't deserve this gift. They'd just Americanize them. No, the Beta Project, Alpha Flight, it's got to stay here.

    Langkowski: You want me to reform Alpha Flight using these four?

    Krypt: What choice is there? Mutnats won't work for us, SHIELD is still trying to take over our superhuman policing, we need our own alternative. Big Hero Six, the Winter Guard....

    Langkowski: I get your point. But you're asking a lot.

    Krypt: You're rich, experienced and motivated. Good enough for me.

    Langkowski: Fine. So what can your four projects do, exactly?

    Krypt: Claire can break down food, water, air into energy at 160% the capacity of you or I. Her brain is hardwired to use that energy as she sees fit. She is the perfect Guardian. I know Hudson had a superconductor suit all ready to go; it's hers now, as is the helmet. Claire is your new team leader.

    John has future memories, he can see things occurring in his immediate vicinity before anyone else, and react to those memories. Hudson's newest Vindicator suit, not that geothermal monstrosity, that's his. He needs a suit with quick reactions, not powerful ones. After all, glimpses of the future have to be acted on fast.

    Kateri has knowledge of magic, she can sense it, but she can't use it. You have to get to know her to understand, but she's Nemesis.

    Kellen is....unique. I tried to make him a strong speedster but it didn't take, somehow. He can sense the shortest route to anywhere. Believe me, their are an infinite number of shortcuts. Yes, he's that good. He creates paths that you all can follow. It's like teleporting without the wormhole generator. He brought us to you, after all. Virtual speed.

    I don't know what to call him, though. Box, Northstar, nothing fits, and Pathway isn't accurate.

    Kellen: I keep telling her Pathfinder, but she wants me to have an old Alpha Flight codename.

    Krypt: Indulge a dying woman! I'm sure the good doctor will think of something.

    Langkowski: This is what you want? To bring back Alpha Flight, to risk your lives, to make SHIELD mad, to scare mutants? After all, most mutants get taught at Utopia that Department H worked to defeat mutantism.

    Krypt: All we ever found out was that mutants aren't an evolutionary leap. Even if they wiped out all non-x-gene humans non-mutants would be born. They're more like Koreans to our Japanese than Homo Sapien to Neanderthal.

    Langkowski: Back to my point; Alpha Flight?

    Claire: Lilli always talked about joining Alpha Flight; now we get to. She had the dream first but I'm not ashamed to take it on [the others nod in agreement]. We're itching to get going. We don't want Captain America to become Captain North America, after all.

    The Master, Dream Queen, Sentinels, SHIELD, the Hand, Earthmover, there's a lot to deal with.

    Langkowski: Sounds to me like Eileen still has access; not many people know the Master is still in operation or that Earthmover is a problem to solve.

    Langkowski eyes the five of them. None flinch or look away.

    Langkowski: So that's that. Alpha Flight is back, whether I want it or not...

    Krypt: Don't lie, you want it!

    Langkowski standing to go: Then we'd best get your uniforms. Yes, I know exactly where the new Guardian and Vindicator suits are, and where the Nemesis gear is stored. You can back out anytime until we get to the storage depot, but once you're suited up I'm not letting you out of your contracts.

    Claire grinning: Lifetime contracts are so valuable these days, who'd pass up an offer like that?

    And off they go, as Krypt boards a bus to abandon her charges. Now they are the responsibility of Walter Langkowski, esq. What adventures await? This ain't your mama's Alpha Flight!

    Hopefully I'll have an adventure story soon, and a good name for Kellen.
    Keep your stick on the ice.

    Live it.

  2. #2
    I'm a RealWyldeChild Alpha Flight
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    Hm...a bit rough, but could have some uses. I'd buy it!
    Support Artists, Not Companies! Creator-owned comics are where the real art is at!

    My new website! http://lifelessordinarywebnovel.com/home.html Follow my super-powered web-novel adventures, "Life Less Ordinary"!

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    Also 'occasionally' ranting Alpha Flight related stuff at http://canadas-own-the-flight.blogspot.com/

  3. #3
    Alpha Flight
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    Nice to "see" Dr. Krypt. Good beginning if it were to start over with replacement heroes... but what happened to Earthmover?

    DIGGER

  4. #4
    New Recruit
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    Nice! I love a good story. Please, do continue your storyline.

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