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Scene Title Revenant
Synopsis The word "revenant" is derived from the Latin word, revenans, "returning". A revenant is a visible ghost or animated corpse that was believed to return from the grave to terrorize the living in mythology. All of these things are true.
Date October 5, 2010

Commonwealth Institute

Once more, the operating theater is presented like a stage play.

Shadowed, faceless figures loom in the seats above the operation floor, mere silhouettes behind layers of glass. They watch in silent judgment of the table whereupon a jar once more sits. A preserved brain, rough and damaged now from the first attempts at bringing the dead back to life after decades of post-mortem.

Standing at the head of the table, a doctor in a white frock stands in perturbed silence. Elijah Carpenter doesn't want to be here, because he knows what his presence means each and every time he is summoned. His weathered, old face is creased with worry lines, gray hair thinner than it was when he first arrived here. The last year has been especially hard on him.

"Are we absolutely certain that this is safe?" It's a dubious question to ask, but as Doctor Carpenter looks to the man conducting the procedure, there is only grim certainty on Doctor Jean Martin Luis' face that — no — this is not entirely safe. Stoicism is drawn on the even older man's countenance, his saggy expression a perpetual frown presented by thin lips on a froggish face.

Standing a distance away from the tables, Luis looks up towards the shadowed figures watching the procedure. "This will be our second attempt at the revivification of the subject. Alternate procedures have been put into effect," all of this stated for some sort of record. "I have at my side, Doctor Elijah Carpenter, who is going to perform a cranial imaging of the subject's brain when it is brought to its pre-death status by…" Luis looks over his shoulder, motioning for someone to join him.

The blonde, young surgeon who rises from his chair to walk to the side of the table is Darren Stevens, hair swept back into a neat coif, facial hair cleanly trimmed. Though he, much like Elijah, looks like he doesn't entirely want to be present at these proceedings, especially with how the last time turned out. "Doctor Stevens," Luis explains with a motion of one hand to the younger man, "is going to utilize his SLC-expressive ability to rewind the localized time of the preserved brain, by which to return it to its living status, in theory, long enough for Doctor Carpenter to copy it to a donor recipient."

Nodding towards a doorway, the wheels of a gurney squeaking preface the arrival of Julie Fournier, her blonde hair tied back into a neat bun, white lab-coat buttoned down as she wheels a man out, strapped down to the table. The blonde man restrained does not look conscious, the IV in his arm hydrates him on a slow drip, while nothing but saline in his system seems to indicate a state of torpor otherwise introduced.

"This, ah, replicant body of Julien Dumont is in an induced vegetative state, harvested from Mister Dumont. It is an open host for the consciousness that Doctor Carpenter is going to imprint and will provide no harm to the clone." Luis' attention drifts from the body to Julie, her tiny frame moving around the laboratory dutifully. "This is my lab assistant," he explains up to the glass, "Julie. She will be assisting in the process by facilitating an augmentation of Doctor Stevens' ability."

The last monkey to this particular circus happens to be awkward in a lab uniform. Tyler Case is tall, broad-shouldered and generally ill-tempered within the confines of the Institute. Wringing his wrists as he walks in to the lab, his eyes are cast upward towards the glass windows. "Who's up there, Statler and Waldorf?" Tyler asks with the crack of a smile. Unfortunately, Doctor Luis does not seem to share his humor, looking down to the bodies.

"Mister Case possesses a unique ability that allows him to swap the SLC-expressive ability of an individual. We are hoping that application of Tyler's ability on to the donor shell from the host brain will allow the transfer of an ability — if any were had." The dubiousness of that sentiment seems to imply that Luis himself isn't entirely sure of who the brain belongs to, or perhaps it is part of the theatrics on display.

«You may proceed, Doctor Luis,» crackles over the operating theater's intercom, the deep and rough voice of Doctor Simon Broome, anticipation heavy in every syllable. With permission given, Luis motions to Julie and the blonde is off to Darren's side, lifting up a bare hand to rest on his arm as a purplish glow crackles from her palm.

Tyler furrows his brows on seeing the display, lips parting and eyes wide for a moment before exhaling a sharp breath, recognizing Gillian's power. Darren lifts his hands, reaching down into the jar to pick up the preserved brain, eyes falling shut before then snap open, revealing his irises to be brilliantly luminous lime-green rings, emanating waves of radiation.

Hands shedding yellow-green light, a low magnetic harmonic noise rumbles through the lab, followed by the walls throbbing from a bass pulse as green light suffuses the brain. Doctor Carpenter stands close, his throat working up and down, eyes wide as he lays a hand down on Julien's forehead, then reaches out for the brain hesitantly, watching blood vessels begin to blossom back to life, natural color begin to turn to the piece of flesh as Darren excises the body from the reconstruction.

Eyes fall shut, brows furrow and Darren exhales a sharp, keening whine as his lips pull back to reveal teeth in brief wince. Exhaling another breath through his nose, the temporal-manipulator soldiers on, drawing the brain out from the past, recreating it by turning back the very sands of time in surging, phosphorescent reverie.

A flicker in Julie's aura of augmentation causes a ripple to pass through Darren's ability, the blonde's hand yanks away from Darren, her blue eyes growing wide as something is triggered. Suddenly she's screaming, backpedaling away from Darren with a horrified expression. "No! No— no we can't— we can't bring him back! No stop! Somebody stop! No! No don't— // when Julie staggers back into Doctor Carpenter, he slides aside from the girl, watching tears well up in her eyes as one of her abilities seems to have reared its head at a //dangerous time.

The young girl's panicked cry goes unanswered as Luis sharply protests, "Do it!" One hand slaps down on the table as he motions to Doctor Carpenter, who reaches out to rest one hand on the brain and moves his other hand to settle back down on Julien's forehead. Julie is backing up still, however, and despite all good intentions, Tyler Case being there to try and console a scared young girl when no one else will puts him in a precarious situation.

Her ability and Tyler's collide, like opposite ends of a magnet, creating a backlash of purple radiance and crimson lightning that erupts into the room. Doc lets out a scream as Darren's green-gold radiation surges past him, his hand coming back scalding white from the brain, his eyes fading to a pale white and shedding light as Doctor Luis lets out a panicked howl, leaping back and away from the table as the lights flicker in the lab.

Crimson lightning explodes from Tyler as he screams, "No! Stop! Someone negate me! Jesus Christ someone stop me! I can't— I can't— " like a bomb going off, Tyler's ability floods the lab with a riotous explosion of energy, launching him back off of his feet as bolts of crimson energy strike Doctor Carpenter and Doctor Stevens.

A shelving unit crashes apart as Tyler strikes the framework, glass shattering as he breaks each shelf. Elijah is flung away from Darren, the gurney rolling across the floor and away even as Darren exhales a breath of greenish-yellow smoke, blood trickling down his nose as the brain held in his hands glows brightly with the irradiated color of his temporal revisions, then cools, revealing a burned and shriveled mass of dead flesh that chalkily breaks apart in his grip as he is struck by a wave of augmentation from Julie as well.

Screaming echoes everywhere in the room, Julie's shrill crying, Doc's pained howl, Darren's frightened wail and then a moment later Tyker Case's shocked scream that turns into something more of a primal roar as a surge of red lightning blasts out of his eyes and open mouth.

No one does anything to stop the escalation, though shouting can be heard behind the glass of the observation room as the staff witnessing the procedure try to clear out. Only one intrigued individual remains as the lights flicker again, and Simon Broome's eyes are on anything but the lights from his perch in the observation room.

"Gas— we need the negation gas!" Luis shouts, waving to the observation room, "pump in the gas!" Luis' panicked cry comes as the room is swallowed by darkness, the lights going out entirely. Pitch blackness fills the laboratory, a light sparks on the ceiling, someone is crying in the dark, someone is breathing heavily.

Doors to the lab swing open, and Simon Broome is striding inside implausibly despite that he is also watching from the unlit balcony, his eyes are wide and silhouette backlit by the hallway. "Where is he?" The old man demands, briefly looking up to the balcony, then to Luis. The French doctor, however, is of little help where he sits slouched down on the floor, psychologically rattled but otherwise fine. Elijah Carpenter lays on his back on the floor, hands trembling and smoke rising from his palms.

Darren Stevens likewise is in a crouched heap, blood running from his nose and ears in thick lines, dark circles around his eyes and hands trembling. Spotting the body of Julien Dumont, Broome hustles over to the vegetative host, leaning over the darkly lit gurney, his black eyes wide as he rests one hand against the replicator's face.

"Are you there? Did it work?" Dark brows furrowed together, Simon Broome's answer comes from across the room. It's a hoarse voice, whispery and ragged, followed by the sound of clattering glass in the same moment.

"Here" is choked out, followed by motion in the dark. Another piece of glass clatters to the floor when Julie scrambles away from the voice, hurrying over to Luis' side. The tiny blonde hunches down, blue eyes fearfully wide as she watches Tyler Case crawl away from the shelf, smoke rising off of his body, one hand wavering in the air.

"Simon," is coughed out, and as Doctor Broome hears his name called by Tyler Case, he slowly rises to stand up straight, a horrified look crossing his face. "Simon I'm right…" looking down to his hand, there's a moment of confusion on Tyler's face. His brows furrow together, lips part, and as he lifts up a hand to his face, there's a shuddered breath of confusion.

"No…" is whispered in the dark, a trembling hand pulled away from the physical proof of the matter, eyes diverting to where Darren is struggling to get up from the floor, broken pieces of a dried and shriveled brain scattered like so much detritus at his feet. "Oh God no," Tyler murmurs as he shakes his head, looking up only to see Simon Broome's dark silhouette looming over him now.

"Security," Simon states flatly into the cuff of his right sleeve, coal black eyes meeting Tyler's with apology and distrust all in one. "I need a team in Lab one." Lowering his sleeve from near to his mouth, Simon Broome hesitantly watches the figure settled on the floor in front of him, throat working up and down in a swallow, before he notices Tyler's eyes lid partway and an exhalation of breath slides out heavily through his nostrils.

As Tyler slouches to the side and falls over, Doctor Broome looks across the lab to Luis, anger in his expression. Broome's lips sag down into a frown, jaw trembles and eyes fall shut as his wrinkled and old hands curl against his palms. Turning to face Tyler again, Broome kneels down and lifts up one hand, resting it down on the young man's shoulder as the sound of approaching footsteps rushing down the hall draw closer.

While his expression may be remorseful, in his voice there is at least some small measure of triumph. Even if today has been a Pyhrric victory. In the silent, unconscious figure of Tyler Case, Simon Broome will deign to claim such a small victory for himself, because it — in the very least — is a victory.

"Welcome back…" he murmurs to the unconscious figure, "Sir."

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