Thursday, April 11, 2002

Darkstone Episode 7: The End, Or Is It?

Ethan Fairchild hadn't been surprised to see Gia Doyle slither into the hotel room where he had initially planned hours of sexual antics with the stately beauty, Rachel Demarco. But what he was taken aback by was what happened next. Gia revealed her position in the small room then shot both Rachel and Carter Wayne at point blank range.

But she wasn't finished yet, Ethan noticed.

His second shock was when she grabbed Rachel's gun from her dead hand and pointed the cool metal at him! He was, to say the least, flabbergasted.

"I always thought I was a good judge of character. And I have been wrong before, but never this wrong," Ethan tugged at his restraints. They were as solid as the metal they were constructed from.

"Believe your delusions, Ethan, but you were never that good at reading me." Gia raised the nose of her Glock and it quivered slightly betraying her true emotions.

Ethan was distracted momentarily when the room spun, then went gray and out of focus. The room was still there, but everything about it was muted, darkened. He blinked away the obscurity quickly wanting to train his focus instead on Gia and not on his strained eye sight.

"You don't want to kill me, Gia. You never have. If you did, then you wouldn't have given me that bullet proof vest that saved me from Octavia's bullet in Bulgaria." He began grasping for straws to influence Gia into letting him go. "What about Amsterdam eight years ago? I'm sure neither one of us will ever forget that mission."

A traitorous tear slipped down her cheek. She wiped it away with a flick of a finger. "You may have different memories of that time than I do, Ethan. That is where this all started. At least, it did for me."

Ethan didn't know what she was talking about, nor did he really care. All that concerned him was escape.

"You've never had to take over a personality so completely that even you begin to believe it yourself. You've never had to give up everything... for... because of those you serve. They made me give up everything I ever wanted because of you. You are my true enemy, Ethan." Gia's Glock quivered again, but this time it was in anger. Whatever was seething inside of her was an emotion he had never seen in her before.

"So, killing me. That's going to bring you justice?"

"In a way, yes." The tears were flowing now. Gia brushed them away with the butt of her palm. "You never knew me before... before I was Gia. I was innocent then. My only want was to protect my family."

Family? This was new. Gia Doyle had a family? It was something he never would have thought her emotionally capable of.

While he kept her talking, he managed to slip free from the handcuffs, an old trick taught to him by a carney magician. In a flash, he stood, grabbed the chair in which he was sitting and round housed it into Gia's body, knocking her off balance. He knew the action would only make her more angry, but it was a chance he was willing to take.

Her head whipped around nailing him with a laser gaze. Blood oozed down her lip. "I'm spilling out my heart to you," she growled. "At least have the decency to give me your fill attention." She retaliated with a flurry of punches and kicks of her own.

She had him down for the count when his eyes went out of focus again. Never before had he had such problems with his vision, and it was beginning to concern him.

"Don't fight it, Ethan. The serum they gave you had a slight side effect. It not only make someone tell the truth... it will also render the captive blind." Her laugh was rough and heartless. He really had been hopelessly wrong about her. Gia Doyle had no heart, which is probably what made her such a good spy.

Carter Wayne's gun was still in his grasp. Ethan didn't think the dead man would mind him absconding with his weapon. What was he going to use it for in death? He did a dive roll across the room landing him close to the door, then grabbed the gun out of Carter's hand. He whipped to attention aiming the firearm at Gia.

"My father always told me to trust no one." He smiled slightly at the memory. "I thought he was just being my old cynical pop. But now I know better, don't I?"

Gia had her Glock also pointed at him. "You can't get away, Ethan. You've never get away."

He stared at her stoically. "Watch me."

Like a gun slinger, he twirled the cool metal around and bashed Gia over the side of the head. He didn't stand around to watch her crumple to the ground. He knew her well enough to know that she would definitely have someone watching her back in case she wasn't successful. Ethan made sure to steer clear of them.

As the minutes ticked by, Gia's prediction came true. The serum was still doing a number on his vision. Slowly, it became worse and worse until he could barely see the shapes passing before him. Somehow, by the grace of God, he managed to stumble into a train station. He knew the underground subway would get him close to headquarters even if he couldn't himself.

He had always told himself that he wouldn't take the train, especially after he acquired his first sports car. Red, of course. Today he knew he would have to make an exception to that rule since he couldn't see well enough to walk much less drive.

When the conductor called out the Westminster station, he debarked clumsily, bumping into passengers along the sidewalk. For awhile, he wondered if he could see well enough to enter the code that would gain him access to the headquarters, but there was something odd about the key pad. It didn't light up when he pressed the digits.

This wasn't good. This wasn't good at all. Could a hostile have gained access to Legacy headquarters?

The door swung open easily. It hadn't been locked.

He held his gun in the ready position in case he needed to use deadly force. Ethan tried to blink away the foc obscuring his vision but it was only getting worse. He was nearly to the end of the tunnel that would open up into the Control Center, the heart of the Legacy's operation. As the large steel doos swung open, he was shocked by what he saw.

Only silence welcomed him home. Silence and emptiness.

Everything was gone. The computers. The chairs. The personnel. Everything. The entire complex was barren. But there were scorch marks on the wall that told some sort of battle had been fought in the room.

Where was the Legacy? What happened to it?

He dropped to his knees in the empty space, his gun clanking on the concrete floor. It was then his vision decided to leave him entirely.

Now he was not only blind, but alone.