Ascendant Androids
Epilogue 5 – Of Stones and Shoes
By Crys (A.K.A. CrystalGirl)

[Scene:  The Ascendant Androids base of operations.   It’s been almost two months since the Darkman incident, and things have pretty much gone back to normal.  Recently, the Androids have taken on bigger cases, and their reach has become more spread out.  They’ve gotten to know each other a lot more in the past two months, and have mostly adjusted to the quirks and habits of their new “family”.  Everyone, that is, except Patrick, who has been a bit more reclusive as of late.  Thusly, this tale begins with Crys once again invading the privacy of her teammates.]

Crys: -Enters the access code to Patrick’s room, and steps in quietly.  She spies him sitting on his bed, seemingly deep in thought, and stands in the doorway for a moment.  However, soon she clears her throat and steps in tenderly, and he jumps, looking over at her- Heya Patrick.  How are you?

Patrick: -Gives her an “oh, it’s you” look, then shrugs and looks away.-  I’m alright.  Been better, been worse, I suppose.

Crys: -Steps toward him cautiously.-  Are you sure?

Patrick: -Looks back at her, frowning.-  Positive.  Why do you ask?

Crys: -Stands there awkwardly- Well, it’s just… we’ve notice you’ve been a bit distant lately, and…

Patrick: -Sounding annoyed- Lemme guess.  You came here to try and talk me into feeling perfectly fine and dandy, right?  Well, y’know wha—

Crys: -Backs away a bit, holding up her hands in a blocking position- Whoa, hey, calm down!  I just wanted to know if something was wrong!

Patrick: -Standing now- Is something wrong?  Is something wrong?!  Of course something’s wrong!  You ripped me away from the life I used to know, stuck me here, and didn’t even give me a choice!  Then you expect me to accept it and go along with your little games!  Well, I’m through with it!   THROUGH!

Crys: -Stands there for a moment, blinking- Is that was this is… Patrick… I thought you didn’t mind this?  When Tommy and I first asked you…

Patrick: Of course I agreed with it.  It’s not like there’s any way to reverse the process.  But you keep making wise about how we’re your guinea pigs and how you created us, and honestly, I want nothing to do with it anymore!

Crys: -Continues standing there, and stares up at Patrick weakly- I’m sorry Patrick… I had no idea you felt that way… but… there is a way to reverse the process.

Patrick: -Stares at Crys for a moment- Really?

Crys: Yeah… we haven’t tested it though… but we can remove the armor.  It’ll leave some scars, but it’s a small price to pay, I suppose.  You can go back to the way things were… but you’d have to be the real guinea pig this time.

Patrick: …I’m willing to take that chance.  Just let me go back to a normal life.

Crys: -Straightens up, and nods.- As you wish.

[Later, in the operating room.  Crys and Tommy are next to a long table, which is holding up Patrick, who’s laying on his stomach.   His mouth is covered by a mask thingy.]

Tommy: Patrick, you sure you wanna do this?

Patrick: -Nods, as he’s incapable of talking at the moment.-

Tommy: Alright… hold still then.  This is going to hurt like hell.

[Patrick’s eyes go wide as Tommy starts to cut carefully into his back.]

[In Stryker’s room]

Stryker: It kinda sucks that Patrick’s leaving the team, huh Maks?

Maks: -Sitting on Stryker’s floor- Mmhmm.

[Suddenly, a loud, muffled scream bursts through the room, nearly shattering a window, and Vulcan runs in with Johnny clinging to his shoulders, twitching.]

Vulcan: Did you guys hear that?!

Johnny: Oh god… my ears…

Stryker/Maks: -Both look up at Vulcan and Johnny, when Matt comes running in and knocks into both of them, sending everyone flying.  Johnny lands with his head in a vase, while Vulcan lands on top of Maks, and Matt lands on someone’s shoes.-

Stryker: -Falls onto the floor from laughter-

Maks: -Squirms under Vulcan- GET OFFA ME!

Johnny: Hey!  Who turned out the lights?!

Vulcan: Ow!  Hey!   That’s my RIBCAGE!

Matt: Ooogh… ow… is everyone alright?

Maks: -Shoves Vulcan off of him, and stands- Yeah, no thanks to you.

Matt: -Stands as well- Yeah, we—

[Vulcan, Matt, Maks, and Stryker all stop and stare at the shoes, which start to mysterious walk away.]

Right Shoe: Hmph!  What nerve!

Left Shoe: We’ll get revenge on them yet, my dear.  Soon, we shall rule the world!

[The four watch the shoes walk out of the room, while Johnny kicks and squeals, trying to get out of the vase.]

Vulcan: -Pulls Johnny out of the vase.-

Matt: Let’s agree to never talk about that again.

Johnny: Talk about what?

Vulcan/Matt/Maks/Stryker: Nothing.   Nothing at all.

[Later, on the surface, near the secret entrance to the base.  Patrick says his final goodbyes, and starts to head off, not looking back.   The remaining seven Androids watch him go sadly, the thought of losing a member in any way bringing them all down a bit.  They stand there watching for a bit, and one by one head back inside, until only Crys is left outside.  By this time, Patrick is out of sight.]

Crys: And so the first one falls… how long until the rest of us follow suit…?

The End