01 Feb I’m a guard stationed at a ‘secret’ government prison Part 4
“I’m so sorry, I forgot to introduce myself.”
The man stepped towards us with a gaze that I can only describe as volatile. Perhaps, in the moment, he had no ill intent. But there were volcanoes behind his eyes. Volcanoes that looked ready to erupt at any damn point. For that reason, I found myself slowly backing away.
But not Sandhu… for whatever reason, he stood his ground, facing the strange man without reservation. I suppose it also helped that he was 6’4 (193 cm) with a considerably larger frame.
“The name’s Adrian Nyquist.” He said, his voice nearly shaking with some kind of obscure excitement. He held out his hand but neither of us bothered with the niceties of the introduction.
He sighed. “What, is it me?” he lifted his shirt collar, taking a whiff. “Oof. You gotta shower more, Adrian,” and then he started laughing again. “But can you blame me? I’ve been busy-“
“Who the fuck are you?” Sandhu insisted. “And don’t just tell us your name again.”
“Okay,” Adrian said, smirking. “Big guy. Scary stuff, really. What’d you bench? 3 plates and a bit?”
Sandhu opened his mouth again, but was interrupted.
“It’s fine, though. I’ll go ahead and explain myself. I mean, the whole situationis kinda weird.”
“Yup,” I responded. “Just kind of.”
Adrian sat down on the floor and let out a big puff of air. “I don’t really wanna go too in-depth here. I don’t enjoy talking about myself. So let me drop the bomb on you first. I caused the breach.”
I nearly swallowed my tongue.
“What? What the fuck do you mean?”
“I meant what I said. I let all the prisoners out.”
“But.. what… how?” I stammered out.
He tilted his head back and groaned, before pretending to type on an invisible keyboard. “Just a little hacking, man. Nothing crazy. And they say that you’ll never use the skills you learn in school in real life. Pfft.”
“Hacking…” I responded in disbelief. But why?”
“Well, that’s where it does get a little crazy. Now, have you ever hopped dimensions?”
“Have I ever fucking what?”
“Alright, I see you’re un-initiated with the concept. Well, unlike hacking some corny lock system, the logistics there really do get complicated. I’ll admit that I don’t 100% understand it myself. But… I understand it just enough to have some fun.”
I was at a complete loss.
“I’m a jumper, that’s what they call us,” he chuckled somewhat goofily. “Still a novice, but at least I’m out there doing it. Living life, you know? Anyway, the multiverse is massive, obviously. A lot of crazy worlds out there, just waiting to be explored. But…”
“I made a mistake last month. You see, I was watching some brutal big stakes fighting tournament called The Evisceration Championships on a planet called The Hellscape. Real fucked up place, but drugs laws are mostly unenforced there, so you know… it’s alright, I guess. Anyway, I’m up in the stands, 12th row, just blitzed out of my fucking mind on Astro-Coke. It’s like regular coke if regular coke was actually good.
He blew his nose into a disgusting handkerchief.
“But… sometimes you make some bad decisions when you’re a juiced. I guess school taught us something else, huh? Long story short, I made a deal with some fucking sketchy intergalactic gang leader named ‘Bones the 4th’ that I’d provide him a fighter that would guarantee him a win for the next tournament. But obviously… I was just talking shit. Not sure why the guy believed me, an Astro-cokehead, of all people.” he burst out laughing again. “I’ll never understand the rich.”
“Ok…” I responded, barely comprehending what I’d just been told. “Assuming that what you just said is all true and that you’re not completely fucking bonkers… why don’t you just tell the guy that you don’t have a fighter?”
“Well,” Adrian made a “whoopsie” gesture with his hands. “The guy paid up front. A metric fuckton of intergalactic currency and about 22 kilograms (50 lbs) of Astro-Coke.”
“Then… just go to him and give it back.”
“Alright, Mr. Self-control, teach me your fucking secrets. Look, I’ve blown all the money. I still have a few kilograms of coke though, for a uh… rainy day. I’m not sharing, by the way”
“So… what the hell? This whole thing’s some fucked up tournament to you? You’re just gonna drag the last Void standing to fight in these Evisceration matches?”
“Well, it’s less of a tournament and more of a haphazard free-for-all. I’m no logistics expert, after all.”
I didn’t know what the hell I was supposed to say to the guy.
“If you’re behind this breach, then you’re responsible for the deaths of hundreds of guards. Hundreds of good men.” Sandhu coughed. “Most of them good men.”
Adrian rolled his eyes. “Yeah, okay. Real loss, huh? I’m just trying to live my life here, man.”
“Look, did that comment get us anywhere? You feel better now after stating the obvious?” no reply from Sandhu. Adrian sighed. “Look, can we just enjoy the show now? What’s done is done-
He was interrupted by Sandhu trying to tackle him to the ground. The man did know his jiu-jitsu. But no luck. He couldn’t even get Adrian to budge. I saw the veins in his forehead bulging as he apparently exerted all of his strength trying to subdue the strange, lanky man.
“Shit…” he said, through gritted teeth. “This guy’s strong.”
Adrian simply pulled out a pack of cigarrete, looking completely unbothered. “You know, I’ve taken a lot of strange drugs from a lot of different dimensions. One of them was bound to be a steroid. Also,” he began grinning like a maniac. “I’m no stranger to training. Wouldn’t survive out there if I was weak like you guys.”
He picked Sandhu up by the collar and gently tossed him back.
“Given the circumstances, I’ll forget that you just tried attacking me. Now… why don’t we just sit tight and watch.”
I held up a hand. “One last question, if you will.”
Adrian rolled his eyes and groaned like a child. “C’mon… we’re missing the good shit. But fine, hurry up.”
“The last Void standing… they’re bound to pretty strong, right?”
“Stronger than you?”
“Well… no shit. I’m not trying to grab some chump.”
“Okay. So how the hell are you gonna convince them to come with you? These prisoners aren’t exactly reasonable.”
Adrian stared at me with just about the stupidest look on his face for around 10 seconds.
“Well, you know what they say,” he cracked his knuckles. “You just gotta live in the now.”
“You’re an idiot.”
“Would an idiot get this far?”
The idiot had a point. If he really was the mastermind behind the breach… then the guy had some wicked skills. But at the same time… his common sense was close to non-existent.
“Whatever, I’ll figure it out when the time comes,” he said. “In the meantime…”
He shot us both a rather menacing glare. “Let’s enjoy the damn show.”
I locked eyes briefly with Sandhu. I understood why he was angry. I was too. However… the situation was really beyond helping. We could only as we were told.
While we’d been talking, the Nazi had defeated the Soviet, although he did suffer gruesome injuries from the bout. A portion of his gas-mask had been shattered, revealing a rotting jaw underneath. In fact, his entire body had been pummeled to a near-pulp as he struggled to limp along the rails.
Adrian grunted. “Great, we missed the world war 2 rematch. I hope you guys are happy with yourselves.”
The guy really was like a child. A really capable, psychotic child.
In other news, Satan-Bot had blown up Morgi (along with an entire corridor), while the Surgeon had a made a surprise “discovery” after disemboweling the spider’s abdomen.
It was filled with about 200 smaller humanoid spiders that began swarming him. It was hard not to shudder at the sight.
Bella and Luze looked like they were still trying to find a way out, while Kael and Hugo had encountered The Rowdy Clown – 7’8 (234 cm), 177 lbs (80 kg).
Rowdy really was something else. His appearance didn’t just make you fear clowns and the carnival. He made you fear life itself. An impossibly tall, skinny and pale ghoul-like humanoid dressed in a bloody, dirty 1960s clown costume, with twitching, twig like fingers and cracked, red lips enveloping a mouth filled with sharp, sticky black teeth.
And then there was the fact that he had no eyes and two thin, bleeding slits for a “nose”. I really do wonder what kind of God could’ve created such an entity.
But… he wasn’t terribly strong, only being a Mid-Tsunami.
Rowdy spat a mouthful of dark, gooey spit at Kael, dissolving the right side of his face.
“Ugh…” Kael muttered, trying to wipe the ungodly substance away, only to pull apart bits of his flesh and muscle in the process. “Just nuke this fucking place.”
Rowdy began cackling like the hellish fiend he was, swinging a lead balloon attached to barb-wire right at the still-injured Hugo’s head.
However, Kael managed to intercept it at the last moment, breaking his own hand in the process. Suddenly, a pair of giant bat-like wings sprouted from his back. He flew towards Rowdy, before drop-kicking his head clean off.
“That seems like something you should’ve used earlier.” Hugo remarked nonchalantly.
“You know, I would, but doing so makes me feel pretty gross.”
I decided to check back on the Surgeon. But he was gone.
“Oh, fuck…” I muttered, as I began seeing the black haze around me.
I felt a cold hand on my shoulder, followed by a high-pitched, slimy voice that oozed its way into my ears.
“You got me out of a real sticky situation there.”
Hesitantly, I looked up at the Surgeon’s cold, dark gaze as he grinned like a maniac down at me.
And then his neck was twisted a full 360 degrees.
As he dropped, Adrian let out a big breath of air, stretching out his knuckles. “Guy broke the rules. No running from a fight. Besides… he was weak. Wouldn’t have stood a chance in the evisceration matches anyway.”
“Is he… dead?” I stammered out, looking down at the limp Surgeon.
“Uh… yeah.” Adrian responded.
I shook my head in disbelief. “But… we’ve put sniper bullets through his temple… how did you…?”
Adrian shot me a smug grin. “Like I said… ya’ll are just weak. Now keep watching. Things are getting interesting.”
A few moments later, the Nazi came across the remnants of the spider and its ‘hatchlings’, torching them to ashes without hesitation, allowing me to breathe easier.
Immediately after taking out the spider, he crossed paths with The Chattering Man – 5’11 (180 cm), 145 lbs (66 kg), Mid-Earthquake tier.
As much as I hated sympathizing with Nazi’s, the guy couldn’t seem to catch a break.
Resembling a horribly slouched humanoid, the Chattering Man was the kind of creature that parents told their kids about in an attempt to scare them into being good. Each and every one of his limbs were jagged and contorted, covered by thin, borderline translucent skin that was still inexplicably bulletproof.
His eyes were covered in a damp, bloody and dirty cloth while his long, black, matted hair swayed wildly as he twitched around.
And then there were his teeth. They were giant – about twice the size of a normal human’s, and coinciding with his name – rapidly and constantly chattered like hell, yielding one of the most disturbing sounds imaginable.
Adrian slammed his fists on the table in excitement. “Yes! This is a match-up I’ve been waiting to see!”
The Chattering man stared the Nazi down, his teeth rattling together like a frenzied, demonic drum. The Nazi responded by abruptly engulfing him in a sea of flames.
However, The Chattering Man simply walked through it completely unscathed. I could see the Nazi clench his jaw in apparent frustration. He drew his knife and rushed in, attempting to engage him up close.
The chatterer was surprisingly fast, dodging each slash, before biting down on the Nazi’s flamethrower tank.
The subsequent explosion flung them both into the air, destroying a good portion of the Nazi’s back in the process. On the other hand… The Chattering man only suffered a few cracked teeth.
“Holy hell…” I muttered. Truth be told, I’d never actually seen the Chattering man in action up until that point. Perhaps we’d been low-balling him on the threat-scale.
The Nazi let out a hoarse scream, before rushing back towards his disturbing opponent. He managed to sink his blade into the Chattering man’s shoulder, before being blindsided by a swipe to the face, completely shattering what remained of his mask, revealing his full, zombified visage beneath.
The Chattering Man surged his head forward, biting a large chunk of the Nazi’s face off, causing spurts of dark-green blood to explode everywhere. He followed it up by ripping an arm off, before savagely beating the undead solider with his own appendage.
The Nazi attempted one last stand, grabbing the knife that was still lodged inside the Chattering Man’s shoulder, carving a large gash that extended down to his ribcage.
Nevertheless, his admittedly impressive run was finally over.
Not seeming to acknowledge the wound at all, the Chattering Man plunged two bony fists into the Nazi’s chest, before ripping his torso in half.
Quite the gruesome display, for sure. But Adrian seemed to revel in it. He let out a raucous cheer for the victor.
What the fuck is wrong with this guy? I thought to myself.
Tossing that thought aside, it became apparent that things were beginning to come down to the wire. Kael and Hugo had found themselves within the vicinity of The Dancing Guy – 5’7 (170 cm), 155 lbs (71 kg). He was an ordinary looking, albeit racially ambiguous man in his mid-20s with short, light brown hair and a perpetual 5’o clock shadow dressed in a plain white t-shirt and track pants. He always wore a pair of unbranded earbuds connected to an mp3 that never seemed to run out of battery.
And of course, he never stopped dancing.
He was a Mid-Asteroid. The 3rd strongest being within the entire Chasm. Hell, it’s entirely possible that he actually is the strongest. We’ve never seen him fight against the top 2, after all. So just how the hell was such an ostensibly innocuous man so dangerous?
Who the hell knew. Like most of the prisoners, he was truly beyond explanation.
If I had to classify him, he’d 100% be chaotic neutral. He had no conception of good or evil. No sense of right or wrong. No goals. No ideals. The guy just wanted to dance. And he sure as hell was a menace while doing so.
Yet, he would never go out of his way to bother you. You just had to stay out of his.
He could disintegrate people just by touching them. He’d simply dance through your body, leaving nothing but shreds of flesh and blood behind.
And if you ever tried stopping him… oh boy. You see, his eyes were always closed when he was dancing to the music funneling into his ears. If that music ever stopped… then he’d be forced open them up. And then all hell would break loose.
He’d go on a rampage until he got those earbuds back, and nothing could take him down in the process. Nothing. For that reason, it was better to leave him undisturbed, allowing him dance to his heart’s content. For that reason, his holding cell was the largest, giving him plenty of room to do so.
(Fun fact: He listens to many genres, but his favorite is EDM, specifically melodic trance and hardstyle).
But now he was out. Bad news for everybody, and Kael knew it.
“Shit…” he muttered. “We’re not dealing with that.”
“Why?” Hugo asked. “Is he strong?”
Kael nodded. “More than you know.”
“Then that’s all the more reason why we need to eliminate him.” Hugo said, attempting to crawl towards the Dancer.
But before he could make the biggest mistake of his life, Kael scooped him up and began running the other direction. “Let’s not do that.”
“YEAHHHH!!! THE BIG BOYS ARE COMING OUT!!!”
Adrian’s abrupt shout nearly shattered my eardrums. I glanced over to see which monitor he was looking at. And then I understood his excitement.
Satan-Bot had come across his next opponent. But it wasn’t one he was going to have such an easy time with.
Standing opposite of him on a walkway on the very top floor was Long Wu AKA The Mechanical Menace – 6’9 (205 cm), 375 lbs (170 kg). He was a Mid-Asteroid, right in between The Calamity and the Dancing Guy in terms of estimated strength.
He was actually a special case. You see, he was Originally held in the Chinese equivalent of the Chasm, known as “The Well”. However, as a political ‘favor’ (a complicated exchange, mind you), the US allowed the PRC to transfer Wu over. This was shortly after he’d killed 400+ guards and nearly escaped entirely. They just really didn’t want to deal with him anymore.
He was also interesting in the sense that he wasn’t born with any supernatural abilities or superhuman prowess. His danger came from his brilliant, but unhinged mind and his obsession with the concept of trans-humanism and being “the change that shifts humanity into a new, technological age.”
His original, progress-driven ideals could’ve been deemed noble at some point. But then he went off the deep end with power and decided to prove just how much better we could be once we’d fully integrated ourselves with technology.
And how did he decide to do this? By trying to kill anybody and everybody he saw.
His power came from his suit, which he’d apparently semi-fused with his own body. It was comprised of a dark, unidentifiable metal that had so far proved to be unbreakable. With it, he had a vast arsenal of devastatingly overpowered weapons at his disposal. Machine guns, shotguns, explosives, knives, you name it. Both of the eyes on his helmet were also capable of firing rail-gun blasts.
But his most powerful weapon was something he called “The Singularity Blade.”
That weapon was where the science ended and the fucked-up shit began. Being about 5 feet (152 cm) long and glowing a deep ember, this sword was an enigma. I’m not sure how he made it or what he did to attain it, but it sure as hell wasn’t the result of any kind of engineering.
Any time that he swung it, a sharp, earsplitting roar could be heard from everywhere and nowhere at once. And then, from the tip of the blade, some kind of ghost-like serpent-esque entity would emerge, utterly annihilating everything in the area with its flames, fangs and claws. You could only see it for a about a second, and most guards were under the impression that it didn’t even exist. But it does. And it’s haunting.
“They’re gonna destroy this place.” Sandhu said.
Adrian pulled an old-looking pack of peanuts out from his back pocket, stuffing a handful in his mouth. “You got that right!” He shouted, spitting crumbs everywhere.
Wu took the first offensive, unleashing a typhoon of bullets from a chain-gun that jutted out from his chest. Satan-Bot managed to dodge every shot, closing the distance between them in the process. Both of their movements were incredibly hard to follow, of course.
Once he got close, he attempted to strike Wu with his tail, only to have it blocked by a large shield that abruptly materialized from his forearm.
Wu attempted to slice the tail off with a large axe, but Satan-Bot managed to evade the blow at the last second.
I suddenly understood why he was so dangerous. Unlike Satan-Bot, who’s weapons were already fixed on its body, Wu’s suit was capable of adapting to any situation, morphing its robotic appendages into whatever weapon was best suited to countering his opponent.
“Jesus Christ…” I muttered at the realization. “This guy’s a fucking monster.”
Even though Satan-Bot had managed to dodge that strike, the next one would prove more difficult to evade. In a borderline flash-like movement, Wu threw a Muay Thai kick at Satan-Bot’s side, piercing it with a spike that protruded from the tip of his foot. He finished the combo by transforming his fist into a tool comparable in appearance to a meat-grinder, drilling it into Satan-Bot’s shoulder, tearing an arm off in the process.
Adrian groaned. “And here I thought the Devil robot was gonna put up more of a fight.”
But he spoke too soon.
After taking the hit, Satan-Bot was already on the counter, whipping his tail around to strike the side of Wu’s head.
Wu recoiled slightly, still managing to destroy one of Satan-Bot’s knees with a rail-gun blast as he staggered.
He was about to finish the job when a large cannon materialized from Satan-Bot’s torso. A hidden, last-stand weapon, I suppose.
From the barrel, it fired out an immense, blast of purple energy that Wu barely had time to dodge as it scorched the side of his helmet.
It blew a gigantic fucking hole in the fortified ceiling, causing sunlight to leak in. Keep in mind that we were also about 100 feet (30 meters) underground.
But Wu didn’t give Satan-Bot any more time to reveal any further tricks, blasting its body to bits with a brutal spray from an automatic grenade launcher.
It seemed as if Adrian was about to pass out from the excitement. “THAT’S MY BOY!!!” he shouted. “FUCK BONES, WE’RE GONNA WIN THIS WHOLE TOURNAMENT OURSELVES!!!!”
What I hadn’t noticed was Bella and Luze watching the whole encounter from behind cover. Bella’s eyes lit up upon seeing the hole. A rather convenient escape route.
She ran out from her hiding spot, before leaping an extraordinary distance into the air, right towards freedom.
But then… out of nowhere… a massive, armored hand grabbed her by the neck.
From the surface, a gigantic man dressed in a streamlined mech suit of a model that I wasn’t familiar with dropped down, landing hard on the walkway.
He continued to nonchalantly strangle Bella as he surveyed the scene.
“What a mess…” his booming voice reverberated through the monitors. “It’s time to enforce justice.”
If Adrian was giddy before, he was off the rails now. “They’re here! They’re FINALLY here! It’s time for the semi-fucking-finals!!!”
“Who the hell is here?” I asked, already somewhat knowing the answer.
“The alpha boys and girls. The apex predators,” he responded. “Task Force Void Nova Hammer.”