Jaime Arc II: Past Scars
Part I: Out of the Past
Three weeks later
Apparently, I wasn’t dying. Or at least not as fast as I’d feared. Rather than an uptick in Vaughan Syndrome, the blood had just been a tumor on my lungs popping or something, I sure as hell couldn’t follow all the medical jargon the alien had doctor used, but apparently it wasn’t the dangerous kind.
“How are you feeling?” Doc Venus as she was nicknamed asked me, she had a proper name but I couldn’t fucking pronounce it. Like all Venusians she was this huge blue lizard thing with tentacles on their face. Despite her species she was even more protective and clingy than Doctor Wallace had been. Always running tests and check up on me.
“Any side effect from the increase in Codeine? has the pain subsisted? Have you been feeling dizzy?” She continued to drill me on side effects for a minute.
“Unless you can fix my stupid eyes, there’s nothing else I need.”
“Sadly that is currently out of my capabilities, but if it’s any consolation cybernetic eyes should reach the public market by twenty-nineteen. Although some models already exist they’re mostly custom jobs by inventor-type mutants and have only had limited medical testing and no mass-fabrication.” She went on for a moment about how amazing the technology was, a common thing with her. She’d often get lost geeking out about medical advancements or telling me how she’d become the first alien nobel prize winner for her creation of the first malaria vaccine.
“Can I go now?” I said interrupting her.
“Oh, of course.”
I grabbed my bag and got out the door. When I came out of the office, Mace was waiting for me in the waiting room. Over the last few weeks he’d metamorphosed into a lost little puppy, following me around whenever.
“I thought you had that thing with Amber today.”
“I figured you might want to tag along.”
I shrugged. It wasn’t like I had anything to do. I followed him to the training center where he went into a dojo. Some of the weapon-inclined students would congregate there to practice their skills. Mace and Amber among them. At least they weren’t arguing or fighting and dragging me into their crap anymore. I grabbed my tablet out of my bag and put on one of the history audiobook I’d gotten, focusing on the lecture.
As the two sparred, a loud beeping interrupted them coming from all three of us. I dug through my jeans and found the source was my ID. The electronic band on it displaying a message; ‘RETURN TO DORM ASAP’
“What’s going on?” Amber asked. “Says we should return to our dorm.”
“Are we the only one who got that?” Mace asked.
“It’s probably a surprise dorm inspection.” One of the other students who’d trained alongside them said. “They do them from time to time.”
“We better go back then.”
They grabbed their stuff and I followed them to the dorm where everyone else was huddled in the common room. A minute later, there was a knock on the door and Caroline the cyborg went to open it.
“Hello Mr. Martin.” She said.
“Good evening Caroline.”
“What can I do for you?”
“I’m doing a routine inspection.” He said. “I hope you don’t mind.”
“Of course not.”
He walked around the place for a while, looking everything over.
“Is everything satisfactory?”
“Some of the bedrooms could use a little work and there’s an unauthorized pet, which miss Yeun should have cleared with administration beforehand, but everything is fine. Now to the other reason I came here.”
He opened the door and a crowd of people who’d been waiting outside poured into the building, meeting with the other students.
“What’s going on?” I asked Mace the only person whom I’d told about my eyes.
“Everybody’s parents just showed up.”
“Not everybody’s.” I answered.
Thankfully my only living parent hadn’t shown up, not that she was allowed within a hundred meters of me… But that didn’t mean nobody came for me… Even with my terrible sight, I recognized her immediately. There weren’t any other eight feet tall black women I’d met before.
“Columbia.” I said, greeting her.
“You can call me Reagan, you know.” She said.
“Why are you here?”
“Thought I’d do a little check up on you. Mind if we find a quiet spot to talk?”
I nodded and guided her out of the house, leaving Mace behind, and into a secluded spot of the backyard where we sat on a stone bench.
“You look like you’ve adjusted well. Surprisingly you’ve yet to receive a warning for bad behavior, unlike some other people. But how are you?”
“Fine. The food is better, the beds too. Can’t complain, I’ve had worse.”
“I’ve noticed you’ve put on some weight. Doctor Wallace will be glad to hear that.”
“Why do you care?”
“Because in a way I’ve been where you were. Before I was Legion, I was part of the Liberty League. I was a messed up kids with dead parents who was used by other people and lashed out at the world.”
From the parahuman history class I’d learned all about the League, once upon a time the United States official superhero team, they’d done all sorts of horrible shit in the name of fighting those evil communists. Including rounding up people for supporting the wrong people or liking superheroes, invading foreign countries and all kind of evil shit that people justify in the name of patriotism.
“Jaime, I need to know. What happened to you after you left the detention center?” She asked, surprising me. “When you appeared, you were stronger than before and you knew how to fight. That doesn’t happen by chance.”
“I don’t believe that for a second. Did you know your foster parents disappeared along with the other kids you were with?”
I didn’t. After I’d gotten away, I had done everything to avoid seeing or thinking about them… Especially not Roxanne.
“I didn’t.” I answered with a shrug.
“Please, tell me what you know.”
“I don’t know anything.”
She sighed. “If you remember anything, you can contact me at this number.”
I took the piece of paper and she left after telling wishing me good luck. I stayed there a moment, considering her request. I didn’t really know anything, it had never been my place to know after all, just obey.
I got up only to be interrupted as someone spoke from beside me.
“Jaime…” A voice I hadn’t heard in a long time said. I turned around and looked at her as she came out of her invisibility. Although I could only see the blurry shape of her, I immediately recognized that bracelet she always wore, the last memento of her mother. “I heard what Columbia said… I guess it’s kind of a funny timing for me to show up…”
With my powers, I grabbed her by her clothes and smashed her against the wall, raising one of my knives to her throat.
“What are you doing here Roxanne?”