2020-02-04 - Call Of The Wild


Nick and Isis check out another defunct Lobo Tech facility and discover something sinister.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Tue Feb 4 13:03:25 2020
Location: Paragon Investigations

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Theme Song



Nick Gleasonick hasn't been able to sleep well and has been channeling that into his work. It's probably a bit worrisome, he knows he is a bit concerned about it. When he does sleep, he seems to dream of running. Always running. Hunting. Being like an animal. It's nothing he's ever experienced before and he is concerned that it might signal a new shift in his mutation.

There is nothing to be done for it now. The moon is high, the city is quiet and Nick is in one of the worse parts of it running down another defunct acquisition of Lobo-Tech. For a company as well off as this one is, they certainly seem to have a fair few abandoned facilities littered around the city.

The big brown werewolf crouches low by a brick wall near an alley and judges the industrial complex in front of him. It is allegedly abandoned except perhaps for some homeless using it as a shelter. And it looks abandoned. But it doesn't smell quite right.

Isis has been roaming of a night. Nick might not be fully aware of that - not only in her dreams but physically. Out along rooftops, around the city - losing the ability to sleep at Paragon has upset her.

Having grown up 'feral', she doesn't think much of it. Her life is generally lived on that edge - even though Nick has made big improvements with her behaviour, this backward slide doesn't worry her.

Isis peers at complex from where they crouch. She's dressed in dark clothing and has a hood over her head. "Mrrrw. It smells wrong, Nick and there's people in there. They're … unsettled. Restless. I wouldn't say unhappy but … it's like they're waiting for something."

"Waiting or expecting. Or dreading." Nick agrees. He rubs his eyes. His sleep has not been especially restful thanks to the dreams and while he gets through his days alright, the fatigue makes him a bit slower when he's thinking or considering. It comes off as just being a bit deliberate but it really is fatigue.

Nick sniffs again. "Do you smell that? Smells like… You. You but not you. Male." He means a feline type mutant. And yes. Their scent is coming from up ahead. Like they're entering someone's territory. Which they may be. Integrating into normal society was not easy for many feral type mutants after registration and some failed to make the jump entirely.

"Not … quite dread." Isis answers as she cocks her head. Even tired, she seems to just continue. That's probably due to the conditioning she was subjected to at the Facility - though it makes her more a soldier than a leader.

Something which has worked well for the two animal-like mutants up to now.

Isis raises her nose to the air and sniffs a couple of times. Purring softly as she catches the scent. Whereas Nick is wary, she's … well … she rather like that scent - she cant help but pull the hood back and rub her ears against the wall though.

"I do … " Before Nick can stop her, she starts to move.

"Isis…" Nick sighs and starts to follow after her. Where is she going? Well, probably to find the feline mutant. There's less of a scent trail than a scent area. Some of it is old, some of it is new. Just like one would expect if entering the stomping grounds of someone like Isis. However the fresh trail leads towards the roof of the Industrial complex. Interesting.

"Isis… hey, don't get too far ahead." She's outpacing Nick. There's a ladder up to the roof but it's impossible to see what is actually ON the roof from their angle. It's probably fine but… one never does know.

The scent is familiar and it 'calls' to Isis. Or at least some of the programming that she still has. "Come on, Nick…" she says as she moves forward, stalking and following the scent where it leads. To a post, then another one - Nick can see some marks where something like claws has scratched that pole.

Frowning at the ladder, Isis considers the ladder and the roof. With a glance behind at Nick, the hood still back from her head, she jumps and lands in a crouch right on the edge. So very, very, catlike.

Nick… has to take the ladder. Or maybe he doesn't have to but he definitely does take the ladder. Up top the roof is two tiered, but flat on each tier except for some machinery and skylights. The wind shifts just enough to pick up a fresh scent and there. Isis can see a feline, dressed in loose clothes and a hoodie like her. Tail swaying. There's… reverbium blades on the tail. She's seen the design before, with the ferals hunting other ferals. This one either isn't aware of her presence though or simply doesn't acknowledge it.

Isis waits for Nick to join her, which might surprise the Werewolf. Her nose twitches as her attention fixes on the feline. "Mrrrreow …." it's a low not quite growl that comes from her. She's trying to see if she draws his attention.

When Nick finally gets there, Isis moves forwards again. Slinking. Stalking. Just a like a cat would do. That tail is dangerous and she's not sure if that's all that's happened to it.

The feline mutant's ears twitch and he turns and looks over his shoulder. The body language is entirely animal. He slowly turns his whole body to face the two as they come up. He sniffs, just like Nick is doing now.

"Did Greta send you? I don't recognize your smell…" He says finally.

His eyes are a really vivid blue. Bright, almost neon. Like Isis but turned up to eleven. Both Nick and Isis can see a silver gleam at the end of his fingers. Reverbium claws.

Yes this is, or was, one of the experiments they've been seeing. Though normally those are a lot more openly hostile.

He didn't scent or hear her landing on the roof? Isis reaches out claws, to draw them through Nicks fur. There's two things she's doing, telling Nick to look at the claws and reassuring herself. "You smell … like someone I used to know. We … were looking for people like us." Isis says. None of that is a lie. But it's not entirely truthful, either - she's missing out things. "Who's Greta? Someone like us?"

The eyes are amazing and might have the smaller feline captivated.

As she talks, a feeling of 'trust' and 'comfort' comes from her. She's trying to get this man to relax with them. "What's your name?"

"She's the one who sent me here to watch them…" He gestures and Nick looks on down. There's people in the industrial complex. They look homeless. Perhaps they are. A lot of them look like they MAY have feral traits. The wolfman looks back up.

"Watch them? Why?"

"To make sure that we get the ones that are ours. The ones that belong with the Pack."

The feline sniffs again. "You don't smell right. You do though." That's to Isis. "What's your serial number?"

No name then. Isis isn't going to give hers or Nick at the moment.

"How do you know they belong to the pack?" The blue eyed woman answers, stepping a little closer to Nick when the other feline says he doesn't smell right. "And where is this Pack, anyway?"

"You smell like the facility I grew up in." She says in response. Serial Number? She pauses for a moment, glancing up Nick. Sleeping Nomad - that's how they identified her but "I456539. What's yours?" That is indeed her serial number. Case number. Project number. Whatever you want to call it. The one that identified who she was in the experiment.

No name. The feline seems wary. He moves forward and sniffs. "I series. You don't look old enough… P series. P188790. Pod." Pod. Really? Well… there's a name at any rate. Isis' having an actual serial number seems to have put him at ease.

"Don't you know? We wait to see if they respond to the call." He points down to what looks like a small boombox by the vent. "It's time, actually…"

He hits play and Nick immediately winces. It's hypersound. Well above human hearing but not above his. Or Isis. Below, several teenagers get up and seem to walk or stumble toward the door in a fugue. That feeling of discomfort increases among the others. Now the thing they had feared is happening.

"And you look too old to be a P series." Isis tells them. She's not going to say how old she is. "Isis." She shrugs. "Like I said, we were looking for people like us…" She has a serial number but the slim feline was liberated three or so years ago.

Isis shakes her head as the sound goes off. It's not pleasant and yes, she can definitely hear it. Nick can feel the way Isis mind unfocusses - he's felt that before and seen that look on her face.

She can feel the minds but it doesn't matter, she wants to follow that sound and return …. to …. somewhere.

"Isis." Nick says. And then when the feline sways he says it more sharply. "ISIS!"

"What's the matter? I didn't get your name. It's just the recall sound. The ones who belong with us know it." He turns it off. The teenagers head out the door and down the street. Nick doubts they'll make it far before they're picked up.

"This should be pretty normal to you if you were sent over. Where did you say you came from again?"

There's suspicion in his voice and he reaches out to take Isis' hand and tug her away from Nick and over to him.

"You can hear it, Alpha…" Isis says quietly, torn between following and staying with him.

Alpha. She definitely called Nick, Alpha.

"We were looking for people like us." Isis says again, tugged towards the other feline, she takes a step but holds onto the werewolfs hand, tightly. "I belong with Alpha." Even though the sound is off, the program is still pushing her to follow. With a little bit of will, she might be break it. Or someone who's will is stronger than hers might be able to.

"Where do you gather them?"

"Would you like me to show you?" Pod whispers quietly. Yes he's suspicious. Nick's eyes narrow. This can't be good. He tugs Isis back against him hard. Pod hisses and backs away sharply.

"You weren't sent. You must be the two strays." He growls. "Come with me. You know you want to." He hits the boom box again and that sound starts to play. Then he turns up the volume. Nick cries out. It HURTS. The sound is so high pitched and so loud.

Of course to Isis it won't have the same effect.

Isis is shaken like a doll between the werewolf and the feline. "I didn't say we were sent." She tries to say reasonably. As the boombox plays and Nick yells, Isis shakes her head trying to clear it - it's a loosing battle, really - AIM had implanted that recall beacon deep. "NICK!!! ALPHA!!!"

She tries to cling to the wolf, but he can feel her grip go slack as she lets Pod drag her closer.

Nick looks up and growls. His eyes are nearly blank. He's angry. He's an Alpha. No one does this to him. He lunges and lashes out but Pod doesn't want to fight him. He just dodges backward and tries to pull Isis with him.

"Isis. It's time to go home." He says in a very firm tone of voice. He tries to haul Isis a couple more steps away as Nick focuses on the thing causing him pain. The boombox. He smashes it with one swipe of his claws.

That shuts off the noise. But Nick is pretty far gone and Isis seems to be too.

Isis is dragged towards Pod, half-heartedly struggling. Normally she'd be all claws and anger at the feline but that sound is doing a number on her mind.

The firm tone from Pod has little effect. He's not her Alphs and that makes them equals. "Alpha!" the noise stops but it doesn't matter, Isis is going to obey it anyway.

Nick gets up from where he had fallen on his knees and lunges after Isis but Pod is one step ahead. He shoves Isis toward the other end of the roof. "Run home, Isis! Run home!"

Then Nick catches Pod and hits him. There's the sound of crunching bone and the flickering of reverbium tipped tail and claws. That fight won't last long. If Isis manages to stay, Nick will have her no problem. If she runs…

Well. Isis is very good at Running. Is she better than Nick?

Isis shoved by Pod and stumbles, her arm wrenching as she does.

Run? She looks confused and hesistates for just a moment.

When Nick rips into the feline, Isis turns and start to move. She's trying to work out why it feels wrong but she really can't stop moving.

Nick takes several hits to his arms but Pod just isn't durable enough to last long in a standup fight with Nick. He crumples the cat man and then looks for Isis.

"Kitten!" He almost snaps at her but it's less that and more of a worried bark. As Isis starts to move Nick takes off after her. He's hoping she doesn't run but that instinct - to run when chased - is strong in cats. And both he and Isis are in a very feral place right now.

Isis first few steps lag but with the sound of something moving after her, the feline-like mutants pace picks up. She's fast - Nick is probably faster - she's slightly more agile than the wolf-man though and can use the terrain to her advantage.

Instinct hits hard as she scurries away, trying to put space between her and her pursuer. The snapped Kitten, causes her pace to slow for three whole steps and she's off again. Over that superstructure that Nick might need to go around.

Nick makes a grab for Isis as she gets to the edge of the superstructure but he misses. He curses and does go around. He can climb it but he's considerably slower. It would take him longer to go over than to just run around. So around he goes and by the time he's on her tail again he's lost ten feet on her.

"Kitten, stop!" He's not at all sure that will work. Isis is very good about doing what he tells her to do but cats in general are not creatures that come on command. Or stop on command. And she's been told to go home. It feels right to head that way. Even as it feels wrong to run from Nick. It's a constant war in her mind, one that tips back and forth on a knife's edge.

"Isis!" She's getting close to the edge. If she makes that leap Nick will have to work VERY hard indeed to get her before he loses her in the cityscape.

Where is home, right now? Where the programming is sending her? The Institute? M-Town? Or back to Paragon Investigations. Right now it doesn't matter. Isis keeps running, her steps faltering every so often. When Nick tells his Kitten to stop, she does. For a heartbeat and then she's off again. It will be enough for Nick to the close the gap.

He might be able to grab her before she leaps.

Nick manages to close as she falters and as she leaps he catches the edge of her shirt with his claws. They snag. The shirt tears, but holds and her leap turns into a very short jump and fall into the side of the building. Nick's still got her. By the arm. Hanging.

"Kitten! Stop running!" He growls as he tries to haul her back up without her squirming out of his grasp and falling. It's not necessarily that the fall would do her in. It's more that she might get away if she does fall.

Isis hisses and spits as she tumbles over the edge. The shirt tears and hangs off her in shreds. She does squirm trying to get free until Nick growls - the squirming stops but the growling doesn't.

As he pulls her back up, there's a feline rumble coming from her and her eyes are bright, bright, blue. Almost the colour of Pods. "Mrrrreow. I have to go home …."

"You're not going anywhere Kitten." Nick growls, equally low. Once he has a good grip on her he isn't letting go and the poor woman may bruise from how tightly he's got her arm. Not that he's thinking about that at the moment. His eyes are wide and his teeth bared.

"You have to stay right where you are Kitten. Are you going to run away from Alpha?" That's a low blow but he might need it.

By the time Isis' feet hit the roof again, she hissing and spitting up a storm. "I'm going home …." Her arm is bruised - and she'll be thankful for that later.

The conflicting instructions has her shaking her head. "Alpha told me to go home…." It doesn't sound sure. It's a low blow from Nick, certainly, but he's got an opportunity here. "… Isis is a good Kitten. Does what Alpha tells her." Two steps forward with her behaviour and one step back.

Nick swings Isis around and tries to hook her own arm behind her and lock it there, keeping her fangs and claws pointed away from him. That's the idea anyway. She has some hand to hand training but he's got superior strength, reach and mass and he's already got a grip on her so… this should be okay? He hopes?

"Alpha is right here and he's telling you to stay." It's worrying that Pod was able to somehow override her sense of who is in charge but they'll deal with that later. Right now he just has to get her under control.

"Rrrrreow!!!!" The cry is one of wounded indignation and pain. Nick is strong, Isis isn't but she is trained - he feels her shoulder slip out of the joint as she tries to get herself free. She can't claw or bite him, so there's that.

His words, growled in her ear, has her starting to settle. Bruised, dislocated shoulder and extremely confused, the slim feline stops fighting. "I'm a good Kitten."

"Be a good kitten. Stop fighting." Nick presses Isis up against an aircon unit and uses the leverage that gives him to try to pop her shoulder back into the socket. That will hurt, sadly, because but it's going to have to be done sooner or later and at least it doesn't require a hospital.

The wolfman loosens his grip a little bit to make things less painful. "Settle. Settle. Good Kitten. Calm down…"

Isis screams, yowls, in pain as her shoulder pops back in. It leaves her panting and sobbing in Nicks arms.

"Isis is good. Isis was only doing as she was told." Back to speaking about herself in the third person. It's one way her mind protected her from the abuse she'd received. " Isis … " *sob* *sniffle*

It takes a moment for her to calm down, she's not fighting though - which is good, right? "Nnnnick … wwwwhat happened …" beat "Aaaare you alright?"

Nick shhhhsh's Isis in a calming fashion and eventually he lets go of her to just hug her as she calms down. The amount of time it takes for her to come back is not as bad as it could be, but it's still not a good sign. When she's finally back he lets go of her.

"I'm not badly hurt. Pod played something designed to trigger a recall of some kind. Several of the kids down below responded to it. You did too. He tried to make you 'go home' wherever that is."

Odds are good it's the same place that they tried to make Nick go with an injection. Bad news all around that they seem to actually be rather good at this…

"Isis … I …. " Isis hiccups, sheltering in Nicks arms as he hugs her "… didn't like it. Cccan we go … home, now, Nick? I don't like it here."

She'd been doing *so well* too. This is a blow to her and Nick can feel the terror and worry rolling from her. "Or do we want to try and find the kids? They can't keep them …"

But she's terrified she won't get out if they do this.

"Not yet." Nick looks down at the people below. They need to talk to them. Find out what was going on here. And get them away if possible. "But soon, Isis. I promise."

He isn't going after the kids for a very good reason. They're in the wind. He suspects they were picked up shortly after they were out of sight and they're just not going to be found. Not tonight anyway.

"Come on. Let's go downstairs. And then after that we can leave." Odds are good the people downstairs can't tell them anything directly useful. But any little thing might help. So he just has to gather up all the little things he can.

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