Need and Want


bella_icon.gif m_alex_icon.gif

Scene Title Need and Want
Synopsis Mortimer Jack's third personality rises to dominance as Dr. Sheridan's viral cure enters its final stages.
Date June 17, 2010

Staten Island Hospital

Mortimer's clean room.

Later in the night, it's Alex whose been at the wheel for hours as his fever progressively lowers. His eyes have gone fully mercurial, and he's been modifying the two radios for a while. It's hard for most people to even remotely have an idea of what he's doing, and he's also taken the television apart and attached the speakers to the radio. He hasn't attempted communication with Bella since that first time, and now he sits the cobbled together machine with all its speakers aimed toward the strong glass separating him from the outside.

Clearing his throat, appearing far more calm and meticulous than both Mortimer and Jack, he cracks the most subtle of grins, like a person who's just won a game of chess. "And now, Doctor. The overture!" He flicks a switch in the midst of the exposed wires, but no sound comes out, at least nothing they can hear… unless one listens very carefully, a deep bass vibration going through the air. Then, if she continues staring at the glass, she'll see that it's beginning to vibrate and crack.

See, giving Alex those parts was a gesture of trust. And while Dr. Sheridan is thrilled to see both that Mortimer's ability is returning, and that his condition is improving, suggesting the virus has begun to enter its last stages, this…

This is not so good.

Bella moves very quickly to toggle the intercom. "Alex, please stop that," she says, trying to be emphatic without being curt or demanding, "The air out here isn't clean. Breaking the glass will expose you to infection." It will also mean lots of attention and paperwork, neither of which Bella particularly needs right now.

"I'm very aware of that, Doctor, I'm simply testing. And I was very interested in what your reaction would be." Alex flicks the switch again, starting to dig through wires and fiddle with things again. "This sort of output… these speakers won't last much longer." This current personality is certainly one Bella isn't familiar with, but his earlier declaration of being both of the others seems to show some minor truth. He shows traits of both Mortimer and Jack, but also his own unique traits.

"The other two are a bit unhappy that I've hijacked the body, but what can I do? The chemical imbalance seems to be on my side. I just wish the hallucinations would go away."

Of course. A single glance would reveal the functions of the room's entire apparatus. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to insult your intelligence," Bella says, promptly, "I was simply worried you'd get carried away by your enthusiasm. It would be extremely shitty if you survived all this, regained so much, only to die from complications caused by, say, a common cold."

Bella doesn't understand the first thing about what Alex is actually doing with those gizmos. She doesn't really care. All this tells her is that she has succeeded. She. The misplaced shrink. The pill pusher. A vicious self gratification rises in her like a grim monolith of volcanic glass, sharp and adamant. "Please convey my apologies to the others. I'd like to remain neutral in the matter. I'm here to restore your ability and it seems together we've been successful. Has your full potential returned? Can you tell?"

"I have both Mortimer and Jack's memories, but I've never used this ability before, outside of dreams. It's very fascinating…" Alex makes a few adjustments, then begins to turn knobs, and suddenly discussion between the security team's radios start to play through the speakers. "I've never been in the real world before, I have their memories, but I've never experienced, I'm not able to see out like they are. I'm going to enjoy this very much, since I've had a lot of time in my own little world to decide what I'd like to do with this one."

Oh, that's not ominous at all.

Before entering therapy, Bella would probably feel a slight twinge of pain in her leg right about now. A new personality, over whom she has no definite control. Memories, sure, those may help. But this being is a separate consciousness. Damned Evolved - it was so much easier to deal with DID 'patients' when it was a hysterical symptom rather than a disorder of its own. You could just ignore the 'alters' until they went away. But that won't work here. These are real personality fragments. And Bella is dealing with a new one.

"Allow me to welcome you into the world, then, Alex," Bella says, "Which is, as you know, much larger than this room, than this facility. I hope you'll be roaming it soon. We'll need to build your immune system back up before it's safe, but, barring unforeseen complications, I think you should be fully recovered within days."

"A world where I'm very much not welcome, from what I can remember. I destroyed a paper company that was actually field with secret agents, I tried to help save my dear Hokuto and failed terribly. And I left my Southern Belle in my base at the temporary leader of the Locos. This life is far too fragmented for my liking, and do you know the worst part?" Alex' eyes are still very silvery, and as he turns knobs, the frequency eventually takes him to a speaker in the security room, guards chatting away about their home lives. "There's nothing but insanity and a lack of ambition, this entire body, this ability, it's all a complete waste. But you, Doctor, you're a conniving one. The differences in the discussions you have with both Mortimer and Jack, so much manipulation… what is it that you really want?"

Bella arches her brow. Even she wouldn't give herself quite that much credit. Of course, that's mostly self defense. It's much easier to manipulate when you imagine yourself not as manipulative by as simply 'adaptable'. "I have different discussions with them because they are very different people," Bella replies, presenting her case without directly defending herself, "I don't think of it as manipulation, but I can understand why it might be seen as such. Old habits die hard. As to what I want? At the moment, I want you as a shining example of my innovation and brilliance. I want you to secure my position here. Luckily, as far as I can tell, your getting what you want leads to me getting what I want."

"I want a lot of things. I want to experiment, test the threshold of my ability and the human experience." Alex walks to the glass, running his finger along it. "I'm a distinctly unique creature. I was born in a dream, I could do whatever I liked there, but in the end it was all in my head. I'd like to know how other people think, how they work, in every way. And you, Doctor, you'll be the gateway to giving me everything I want. I'll commit every human atrocity required in the name of understanding…"

"You'd be surprised, Alex," Bella says, smoothly enough "How little knowledge comes of atrocity. Take it from someone who has seen, first hand. Violence, cruelty, brutality… most of these things are used to force truth from lies, to inflict a wound upon the world so deep that it will leave a scar. And then the injurers point to the scar and say: Behold our Truth," she smiles, "It's also a generally unsustainable practice, unless performed with the utmost subtlety."

"It looks like I have a lot to learn. I have knowledge, but again, zero experience in this world." Alex's finger slides over one of those hairline cracks, eyes watching and analyzing everything intently. "But you'll teach me everything I need to know about the world, won't you, Doctor?"

"I can certainly try," Bella says, remaining just where she is, a few paces from the cracked glass, "But I imagine the world that will find you will be a very different world than the world that finds me."

"Your world is my world. I'm not going anywhere." Alex moves his hand away from the glass, then reaches down to pick up his device and carry it to the television. One might get the impression that he might possibly have mother duckling syndrome, but who knows. "Now, if you don't mind, I'm going to see if I can tap into the camera frequencies."

"Don't get yourself into any trouble," Bella cautions, "I still need you. And so, I judge, do you."

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License