Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 60 Pg 21 - 6 / 12

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Misha
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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 57 Pg 18 - 9 / 26

Post by Misha » Sat Jun 01, 2019 8:02 pm

Hey guys!

I actually have a couple of chapters, so stay tuned tomorrow for the next one :mrgreen:





September 8th, 2011 – Day 1790 and counting…

I’ve never cared about my past. Since I had been created in a lab, I had no reason to seek something that was non-existent.

When I was growing up, it was the present that mattered the most. Discovering new things about myself. Pushing my limits.

When my freedom was taken away from me and replaced by invisible chains made of liquid drugs, my future became the center of my thoughts. I started to want more. My present became a means to get the future I so desperately craved, even if I had no idea what that future was.

You see, my future has always been this abstract concept where no one tells me what to do and where to go. But as we get ready to break John free, it’s suddenly clear that I have no idea what my future holds.

I have no idea what I want.


Chapter Fifty-Eight
History Lesson



“You didn’t care that John was…different?” Max asked Anne as she drove her black Jeep down the interstate. Parker and Whitman were driving behind them on Alex’s rental and Liz’s car. After three days of plotting and resting, they finally had a plan. A risky one, but a plan all the same, especially since his powers were still gone.

Their first stop was Parker’s apartment, where they would regroup, get a sense of the terrain, and finally rescue John in two days. But before all that, he had a four hour drive alone with Anne, who had answers to questions he’d never had.

Like having a life together with someone like him.

“You mean if I cared that John could wave his hand and have the dishes washed or the dinner cooked in a manner of seconds?”

He smiled slightly. “I guess we can be handy.”

“You bet.”

“But it never bothered you?”

Anne glanced at him and then sighed. “It did, but not in the way you mean. In the first couple of years, he would have nightmares. We slept on separate rooms just in case he would lose control and I hated that. I hated that he would fear himself, and that despite my romantic notions, there really was a chance I could get hurt.”

“Like when I got sick and trashed your lab a few days ago.”

“Not as bad, but yeah. And there was also the fact that he couldn’t see a doctor. I’m a biochemist, not an all-purpose expert on the hybrid body. I would get the flu and lie awake at night terrified I would pass it to him and there would be nothing I could do to help him if it did.”

“He’s been sick?”

“Not a day in his life, but we didn’t know that. And if he had an accident, then what? You see, it’s the unknown that bothered me. The part where I couldn’t help him because he’s not like us.”

She looked at her ring, and then turned to Max and quietly said, “And there was always the shadow that someone would come for him and take him away to a dark cell from which I’d never see him again.”

Guilt washed over him, even if John was in this situation because he’d wanted to, not because Max had pushed him into it.

“I’m sorry.”

“You can’t help being what you are. Neither of you can. This world is not kind on those who are different, but I accepted that a long time ago.”

“It’s hard living with him,” Max said, understanding what his life would come to be outside of the base. Free, yes, but in hiding. In fear.

Anne smiled fondly. “Not at all. What you have to understand, Max, is that what you are has little to do with who you are. I used to be scared about the emotional baggage that John had because of his upbringing, but he deals with it with humor and I love him more because of it. Most of the time, he’s just a regular guy with his problems and his ideas and his quirks. Like everybody else.”

“Do you think—do you honestly think I can be like everybody else? After all they’ve taught me? After all I’ve done?”


“You’re a soldier who’s been fighting a long war and now are finding that civilian life might be too quiet.”

“Maybe. I want quiet. I want that life. I just don’t know how to live it. I’ve never had to wash dishes or cook dinners. I’ve never been…normal.”

She laughed. An honest, heartfelt laugh. “Neither did he when he escaped! You need to set the bar rather low. No one is expecting you to be this perfect guy with a picket white fence who mows the yard every Sunday.”

“But what do I do? What do I do next week? Or next month? Or in the next five years?”

“You live.”

He must have looked at her with the most skeptic look in the history of humanity, because she rolled her eyes in the most condescending way. “Take each day as it comes? Look, whatever happens with John, you’ll always have a helping hand with me, okay? We have the resources and you have the brains. You’ll disappear to some paradisiac island and then you’ll decide what you’d like to try to do.”

“Is that what you did? When John escaped?”

“Not the paradisiac island, no. But we took our time to figure it out. How much of my research I could safely do on him and publish without it being suspicious. Once we had that down, I started making money. And John has an eye for investment, absolutely loves to find these young entrepreneurs and lift them. After a while, we finally felt we were out of the woods. They thought he was dead, that helped a lot, too.”

“It’s going to be hard to convince them we’re both dead this time around,” Max said, looking out the window. He’d always known he would live on the run, but knowing it and accepting it where two different things.

He wanted John’s life, he realized with sudden clarity. A wife who knew him, a job he loved. Something to look forward to.

Anne got quiet for a minute.

“Max. How much do you know about Antar?”

That name again. The same sadness filled him as before, the same sense of duty.

“Only what John told me, which frankly was vague. I haven’t really thought about it. Something about being kings?”

“A king. And a replacement. A back-up clone, that’s what John called it.”

“So he’s a king?”

“Or you. We don’t know. The means to certify the rightful king of Antar is not part of your powers. You need an emissary for that. John was certain that Antarians would send someone to find their king and his royal family. It made sense, you know.”

“His family? You mean the other ones in the pods really were my sisters and brothers?”

She didn’t answer right away. She was wrestling with what to say and that confused Max even more.

“What?”

“I haven’t thought about this story in a long time, to tell you the truth. And although I wasn’t there when John figured how to read the book, I know it pained him to discover this. So I know this is going to be hard to hear, Max, and I’m sorry to be the bringer of this bad news.” She sighed, getting the story straight in her mind. “His name was Zan. And his time as a king was short.”

She told him about the wife he’d once had, the sister he’d never met and the best friend who’d died on a civil war on a planet far away. She told him about an ambitious but risky plan to get all four back. About how he was a clone of that man, on a failed attempt to continue a dynasty that was now long gone.

She told him it was okay to be upset about a life that had never been his. It was strange to feel the loss of something he’d never have. Stranger still that he might have mattered so much to millions of people on a distant planet while he was playing assassin on this one.

“I don’t…I don’t remember any of that,” he said when she finished. “But I know it happened. I know it but I can’t explain how I know it.”

“It’s in your DNA. Literally. Antarians must have found a way to codify memories, because they were fully expecting you to pick where you’d left. John doesn’t remember any of it, either. Not really. But like you, he knows it in his bones that the story is true.”

“He said he didn’t want them to come find him. Right before he shoved me off his mind, he said he was not going to wait for them to pick him up and throw him into a civil war.”

Anne nodded. “That’s his worst fear. He knows how to hide from humans, he certainly loves his life as a human being on this planet. But how do you hide from aliens? How do you say no to their belief that you’re their king and no matter how hard you yell, they just drag you into this war?”

That sense of duty invaded him again, stronger than before.

“But if we were made for it, brought here to survive, shouldn’t we at least hear them out?”

Anne turned to look at him with raised eyebrows. “You see yourself guiding people to die in your name and then reigning for the rest of your life?”

Yes.

No.

What the hell is wrong with me?


“Listen. I don’t have the answers to this moral dilemma of yours. I know John struggled with it as well, a long time ago. And then he became convinced that Antar was the path he would never choose. Honestly, I think it doesn’t matter anymore. Sixty-four years ago, a ship crashed in New Mexico. Add to that however long it took to that ship to get from Antar to here. Either their civil war was resolved in the meantime without their precious Zan and the royal family, or no one is expecting you to pop up at all. In any case, John wants this chapter of his past buried. He believes it a threat so great that he’s willing to lose his life over it. Do you understand that, Max? Do you understand what’s at stake here?”

Parker’s life. Whitman’s too. Most definitely his life, of course, but that was an afterthought. John loves his life so much he’s eliminating the largest threat to it.

“Of course I understand what’s at stake. What I don’t understand is why did you tell me all of this?”

“Because it’s your story. Someday, you’ll wonder about why you were sent here and who sent you here, and now at least you’ll have some answers. I’m not stupid, Max. There’s a good chance John won’t make it alive out of this and then no one will tell you what he found out on that ship thirty years ago. There’s also a chance that someday someone will knock on your door expecting you to jump into a ship and sail to your world. At least this way, you’ll have time to decide your answer one way or the other.”

Somehow, he’d now ended up with far stranger options about what to do with his life than he’d imagined: locked up at a base; hiding in a paradisiac island; boarding a ship and becoming a king.

Somehow, none of them sounded like him.
"There's addiction, and there's Roswell!"

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 58 Pg 20 - 6 / 1

Post by dreamon » Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:49 pm

I’ve been checking for an update periodically all day and now I have to do the same tomorrow! Lol well I love having you back and finally getting something awesome to read!!!
I have a few dreamer challenges in mind if you are looking for ideas so pm me!

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 58 Pg 20 - 6 / 1

Post by keepsmiling7 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 4:31 pm

Will John make it out alive???
Of course Max only knew what John told him about Antar, and Anne relayed her understanding to Max......
Thanks for the update

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 58 Pg 20 - 6 / 1

Post by clueless » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:23 pm

Glad to finally see a post and I can’t wait to read the next part hopefully soon!

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 58 Pg 20 - 6 / 1

Post by Misha » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:25 pm

And here's the second chapter. If you missed it, I posted chapter 58 yesterday, so now you have two chapters to read!

Thank you all for still sticking to the story!



Journal entry #27, September 9th, 2011


Home.

Getting back into my apartment after the roller coaster I just went through for the past five days is strange, to say the least. It should feel welcoming, but I’m too worried about the upcoming days to even marvel at the fact that I’m back here, in my own room, let alone my own bed.

I'm worried about where John is and what's been happening to him, of course, but I'm worried too about Max's condition. About his lack of powers. I'm worried something terrible might happen to him.

I'm worried that once he gets back into the base, he'll never come out again.



Chapter Fifty-Nine
Change of Plans



"Still nothing?" Liz asked, coming out of the kitchen with two mugs of coffee in her hands. Max was gone to get supplies, and Anne was on her front lawn, making calls to her office.

On her living room, Alex shook his head.

"I've been trying to get into the security system for three days and…still nothing," he said, deflating.

"What about what Max said? About looking for backdoors or something?"

"Well, I know John's alive, that much I can tell you. Food provisions doubled, a bunch of soldiers was transferred there for security reasons, and basically, the whole place is in lockdown. They wouldn't be in lockdown for a dead body, right?"

"Right."

"But then again, John activated a darn spaceship. A spaceship. I can only imagine who you call when you have an active spaceship in your hands."

"So, what you're saying is that the security might not be only for John?"

"Maybe…" Alex said, looking concerned while his fingers flew over the keyboard. "But it makes sense to have your alien and his spaceship close by. I mean, John activated it, right? So…"

"So, he might be able to do more than just light it up. But Max said John wanted to destroy it. If he managed to do that, he might be in worse trouble than we can imagine."

"I just wish we could understand what John was planning," Alex said, sipping his coffee. "I refuse to believe he didn't have an escape plan."

"For what Max told me, it sounded like John wanted to fly the ship out, but it wouldn't really respond."

"If he’d flown the ship up, there would be a hole over the base and a lot of construction equipment to cover it up. Plus, you know, a spaceship lying around. There have been no road blocks or the kind of stuff you’d expect to hear to keep people away.”

Her phone rang, making her jump. Unfortunately, it was work. Her mundane life was calling her back to the reality that she didn’t live in a world where aliens existed while she had all the time in the world to run with them.

Since John owned the labs where Liz worked, Anne had called to say she’d borrowed Liz for a project. Still, tons of unfinished business still laid around in her office, and people were calling her at all times to ask questions.

Maybe I’ll just escape with Max for a little while, she thought as she talked with one of the technicians about using the equipment. The expensive one. In fact, it was the equipment that she’d ordered to get to the bottom of Max’s drug problem.

“You know what? I’ll go to the office and explain it there. No, really, it’s no trouble at all. I’ll see you in half an hour.”

She hung up, looking at herself in the mirror. She wasn’t wearing fancy clothes, but it would suffice.

“What are you doing?” Alex asked as he saw her taking her keys.

“I’m going to my lab. I have to destroy every single piece of evidence that Max was ever there. Call me if you find anything about John.”

It should have been obvious, really. She kept berating herself for not thinking about this before. Once Max was gone—in the next few days if things worked according to plan—everything she had about him had to be gone, too.

She had a dozen samples from him and John in her office. Her computer was filled with data and formulas she’d been working on, that although odd to the average scientist, would be obvious to someone with knowledge on hybrid biochemistry.

If things went wrong, just slightly wrong, the military would descend over this place and she had to be able to deny any involvement. She had to burn it all, figuratively speaking. There could be no link between Max and this place, because this place belonged to John and Anne Herschel, so they had to be kept out of the whole thing as well.

She arrived at her lab and parked. It felt so final, somehow. As if this was her last day on the job.

Next week, Max will be out of my life forever.

The thought was depressing.

Shaking her head, she got out and into the building. It took her the better part of two hours of talking to her boss and her technicians before she had her office to herself.

She made one master copy of her files and then deleted everything. She thought about actually formatting the entire hard drive but then thought better of it. If she wanted to look innocent, then things had to be running as normal.

While her computer was deleting files, she got to destroy the actual samples and any printouts she’d made. Stacks of folders piled up on her desk as she got everything out. She’d gotten a lot of information out of Max’s cells and their healing capabilities, and after biting down her lip, she decided to keep the most important findings.

Maybe not tomorrow, and maybe not next month, but in a few years, she could do a lot of good with all of it. It was just a matter of hiding it really, really well for a little while.

By the time she was done, night had fallen and the lab was empty. Just like she liked it.

Alex hadn’t called, but it was time to go home. Get some Thai food on her way, too. Have one last meal with Max before he disappeared.

She turned the lights off on her small office and walked to the main lab. The lab stations were not only familiar but welcoming. A sense of normalcy invaded her. Science would always explain the world to her, and through the lenses of those microscopes, she’d deciphered how to get Max free.

“The things I would do to you if you would let me,” she thought with a smile and the folders in her hands. How many things she would love to understand about Max and his brain? How many hidden treasures were waiting to be understood in his body?

“Finally!” someone said, startling her.

By the doorframe, Max waited for her.

“What the hell took you guys so long?”

“Wait, John? Oh my God, John!” she went to him—and then through him.

“I’m projecting myself, but my range is rather limited while I’m trying not to die in here. Call Max. I need to talk to him and this is the farthest I can reach. It’s time for me to go home, Liz, but I can’t do this alone.”
"There's addiction, and there's Roswell!"

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 59 Pg 20 - 6 / 2

Post by clueless » Mon Jun 03, 2019 1:07 am

John is planning on leaving the planet?!

I can’t believe that you left it there, so you have to come back soon!!!

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 59 Pg 20 - 6 / 2

Post by keepsmiling7 » Mon Jun 03, 2019 7:21 am

I felt Liz's sadness while she planned that Max would be out of her life forever.
Thanks

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 59 Pg 20 - 6 / 2

Post by dreamon » Mon Jun 03, 2019 5:18 pm

Thank you for the updates! They were awesome to read and I’m eagerly awaiting more!!!
I have a few dreamer challenges in mind if you are looking for ideas so pm me!

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 59 Pg 20 - 6 / 2

Post by Misha » Mon Jun 03, 2019 11:34 pm

clueless wrote:John is planning on leaving the planet?!

I can’t believe that you left it there, so you have to come back soon!!!
Noooo! he wants to go home to his wife :shock:

I'll be back soon with the next chapter 8)
"There's addiction, and there's Roswell!"

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Re: Of Journals & Journeys (AU M/L, YTEEN) Ch. 59 Pg 20 - 6 / 2

Post by clueless » Tue Jun 04, 2019 12:15 am

Misha wrote:
clueless wrote:John is planning on leaving the planet?!

I can’t believe that you left it there, so you have to come back soon!!!
Noooo! he wants to go home to his wife :shock:

I'll be back soon with the next chapter 8)
:oops: oh thank god lol I completely misread that :lol: well I’m so out of this world happy to see you back and I definitely can’t wait for more!

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