Comic 188 - Have a beer

Posted on 6th Aug 2017, 6:37 PM in Blood on Mars
Have a beer

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Author Notes:

Morgenstern 6th Aug 2017, 6:37 PM edit delete
Morgenstern
You, Michelle, and Grizwald all have a beer.

You ask him about the hat. He taps it with one finger.

"Keeps th' satellites from readin' muh thoughts. The contracts are all expired, but somebody could buy 'em up any day now."

You ask how Grizwald knows what... all he knows. And what he knows.

"I figgered you'd get around to askin' at some point. Circulated documents, mostly... stuff gets out, people keep the paperwork movin'. Ya ever heard of Zone Fifty?"

Michelle takes a drink of her beer. "They were, like, a black ops group right? Did shady shit for the government."

He nods. "That's them. They shut down... oh, about a hunnerd years ago after some of their projects started leakin'. They put outta bunch of false leads, fake documents about UFOs and genetically modifyin' yetis, weather control and beams that could turn people gay. There was so much rubbish that it was hard to tell what was real, and what was jus' Zone Fifty blowin' smoke. Buuut... clone science, genetic engineerin', all that started really bumpin' in the twenty years or so after Zone Fifty disappeared. So it weren't all nonsense, all the good stuff just got bought up on the black market. Secret auctions and tha like... y'know, among them rich types."

He takes a drink of his beer.

"They found blood on Mars. Zone Fifty, I mean. Tha underground spent decades tryin' to piece together all the intel on it after the fact, sort tha fact from th' fiction. It looked like human blood under a microscope, but it weren't. It was... how do I explain it..."

"Blood that pretended to be human blood. Right? It could blend in."

"Yeah! Yeah, yer pretty smart, Miss Ex-Cop. It would fake like it was human blood... but it weren't. They started figgerin' out all kindsa things they could do with it--'cuz it didn't just blend in, it had other... strange properties. If me an' you both had that blood in us, but I had more, I could control you with my mind. An' it looked just like regular blood, so... y'know. The possibilities. Hospitals turn into recruitin' stations.

They only had a little bit of blood, though. So, they started engineerin' fake versions of tha alien blood, usin' the same technology that'd become bio printers today. S'all good, right? They've made a mind control drug, holy shit. It's every evil government's dream come true.

Except.

Harold Lasker. Lasker was one of tha first people they did an experiment with, puttin tha alien blood in 'em. The real stuff, not the bio printed stuff. The second, the second they put that bio printed blood in 'em... tha real blood started reactin'. Shit got real, real fast."

"Lemme guess," said Michelle with a smile, "He died, came back to life, and developed a number of powers."

"Oh, he died and came back to life alright," replied Grizwald. "And then he turned into a god damn monster."

"...What?"

"Yup. Stretched out real thin like, had organs burstin' outta his body. Strangled people with his nervous system. Crushed folks beneath his tum'rous growths. I saw some bad VHS footage of it, or part of it. Horrifyin' stuff. Anyway, they noted that the bio printed alien blood and th' real alien blood should never mix. Forced 'em to cancel the whole project, since they were pretty sure there were aliens on this planet at the time. They didn't want the risk.

Once Zone Fifty packed up and left, that formulate for engineered mind control serum got sold off with the rest. Some richie rich type bought it up, started payin' people to hock it on the lower tiers, and now you got Save the Queen."

Michelle looks at you, then back to Grizwald. "I've been exposed to Save the Queen and... uhh... alien blood. I haven't turned into a monster yet."

"And ya prob'ly won't," says Grizwald. He points at you. "'Cuz yer her thrall now. She's aware of Save the Queen, she's got a wrangle on things, it's all good. The original owner of tha Mars blood had been dead for cent'ries. Just a figment of a corpse of an alien that had fallen to the planet or somethin'. There weren't enough mind in its blood to control itself, just enough to get riled up and morph a guy into a freakshow."

"Is there... is there a chance for the engineered blood to do that? Like, could Save the Queen suddenly turn people into monsters...?"

Grizwald gives it a thought. "I don't think the printed blood has enough to it, or we'd already be seein' it. On tha other hand... if some of that original Mars blood was still around, we'd be right fucked. I dunno if they had any left after all their weird projects... but if they did, we better damn well pray the guy with the Queen formulate never gets his hands on the real deal. He'd turn himself into a horror film."

You take a drink of your beer, and give a quick check on Fuse.

image

He's being chased by two cars. He's speeding down the road in Michelle's truck, with someone providing cover fire for him from the bed. The bodies of the officers are gone--he likely got rid of them, but is now trying to get out. He's still in the lower tiers.

Comments:

Xylas_Incarnum 6th Aug 2017, 7:09 PM edit delete reply
Xylas_Incarnum
Well, shit. Gather some weapons, Time to go save Fuse's ass.
Vahno 6th Aug 2017, 7:26 PM edit delete reply
Frick... We... I don't think we can get there to help him. All we can do is distant support. Maybe we could... I dunno... Augh... Can't we do something to sorta hijack his power, carefully, and melt the tires of the chasers?
DrBilly 6th Aug 2017, 8:48 PM edit delete reply
Unless we can dull Fuse's pain, we might need to just let him handle this for now. None of us know the lower tiers like him. Also, I doubt he's calm enough to safely ignite anything. Also also psychic powers while driving?? That's a ticket just waiting to happen.

I guess we ask Grizwold what he wants? I don't know if he wants anything, and I can just about guarantee that he doesn't want to get mind controlled. Probably.
rufiangel 6th Aug 2017, 9:08 PM edit delete reply
rufiangel
I just remembered we had that poster we took from Howler's room. Would our homeless friend recognise it enough to help us put a name or handle to the symbol?

I'm incredibly worried for Fuse, but also uncertain what we can do from here. I don't want to unintentionally distract him while he's driving full-speed. Unless he can use Jane's blood (he has a syringe with it, IIRC) on something she can actually help with? Like I dunno, get his pink-mohawk-friend to pour Jane's blood into the truck engine and sync with Michelle's mind to force the truck to go faster? ;;;; Not sure if that would work, but... anyway, I'm all for Vahno's idea if it's actually possible to use Fuse's pyrokinesis without him crashing the car. XD; Otherwise, we could just trust him to get the heck out of dodge, since - as he said before - it's not 'his first rodeo'.
JackFractal 6th Aug 2017, 9:31 PM edit delete reply
JackFractal
I'm thinking Punk!Friend there is probably the recipient of the blood vial.
rufiangel 6th Aug 2017, 9:46 PM edit delete reply
rufiangel
I'm guessing Fuse's Punk!Friend is the one that owes Fuse a favour, and is the one who's never taken Queen before. Assuming he wasn't forced to take it, though; if he was, then yes you would be right. If that's the case though I guess Jane would be able to control/command Fuse's punk friend. I hope Jane gets signals when that happens though, it would be disturbing if her blood could be distributed willy-nilly and she wouldn't know until she thought to check on it XD
JackFractal 6th Aug 2017, 9:32 PM edit delete reply
JackFractal
> Ask him if he knew your Mom!
> Ask Michelle if she can think of a way to help Fuse. She's a cop, she probably knows tactics stuff!
rufiangel 6th Aug 2017, 9:47 PM edit delete reply
rufiangel
Oh yeah, maybe Michelle can think of something! Maybe? XD;