Chapter 5 — Non-Masters of the Universe
Day 17 — Someplace in Minnesota — An Abandoned House
“Let me go, you fucking monster!” A woman screamed, thrashing about on the floor with a strange collar around her neck as she tried to get it off. “I’m not going to be your prisoner!”
“Come now Ms. Stroyer, it’s far too late for all of that. You’re already my prisoner,” General Ranger spoke with a smile on his face. “You’re only wasting your time, struggling with the collar the way you are. Regardless of what you do, you’re not going to get that off.”
“I am not going to be your prisoner!” The woman screamed out as a strange phenomenon appeared near her body, that she tried to reach out for, but General Ranger moved over to her quickly, kicking her in the face, knocking her unconscious as the phenomenon disappeared.
“Sorry woman, I’m not going to have you using that skill of yours to escape from me again,” General Ranger stated as he knelt down in front of the woman and then lifted her chin as he inspected her face and then shook his head. “What a shame Ms. Stroyer, now I have to kill you.”
“Sorry Ranger, you won’t be killing anyone!” JT screamed as he appeared in the room.
“Malevolent, you are way out of your league here,” General Ranger spoke calmly as he waved his finger at JT. “You need to turn around and leave here, now.”
“I’m not leaving here!” JT snapped as his hand crackled with energy as his psychic sword appeared. “I knew if I followed you through the shadows, I would find what you were hiding! Get that thing off of her!”
“Let me remind you again, you don’t give orders to me,” General Ranger spoke as he pressed a button on his belt as JT’s psychic sword fizzled and then disappeared. “Men, take him!”
“Oh no!” JT screamed, looking around as the room filled with military soldiers. “Not again!”
“Maybe that’s a sign that you should stay the hell out of my business little boy,” General Ranger stated as he stood up and then walked closer to where JT stood.
“I’m not going to allow you to hurt people like me,” JT stated as his eyes flashed with energy, but nothing happened. “What in the hell is happening here?”
“That’s for me to know and you’ll never find out!” General Ranger yelled as he ducked down on the floor as the soldiers fired their rifles at JT.
“No!” Darren yelled as he appeared in the room in front of JT, hands spread as he used his magical powers to shield JT from the bullets. “Are you okay Malevolent?”
“There’s something on his belt, he’s using it to block me from using my powers!” JT screamed as his eyes flashed with energy again as he waved his hand, weaving a magical spell as he moved past Darren, grabbing General Ranger and then throwing him threw one of the multiple phenomenon that appeared in the room.
“What just happened here?” Darren asked as he looked at JT strangely.
“Let’s just say that I put General Ranger someplace else,” JT replied as he knelt down to the woman on the floor as one of the soldiers ran over, grabbed him and then pulled him away from the woman.
“You can’t do that freak!” The soldier yelled as he punched JT in the face, knocking him down to the floor. “That is property of the United States Government and you’re not allowed to touch it!”
“You must be out of your damn mind!” JT screamed as he stood up quickly as his hand glowed brightly as his psychic sword appeared again as he stabbed the soldier with it.
“Ahhhhh!” The soldier screamed, sliding off of JT’s psychic blade as he slid down the wall to the floor.
“Darren, see to the woman,” JT directed as he held out his hand, using his powers to fight the soldiers as one of them rushed him with an energy saber while another used a flame thrower.
“The name’s Conjurer,” Darren stated as he pulled at the collar around the woman’s neck, having no success with his actions.
“Whatever, just get that thing off of her!” JT screamed as lightning flashed from his hands, knocking one of the soldiers down to the floor. “Hurry up, her pain is slashing through my psychic barriers… I can’t stand it!”
“I’m trying!” Darren screamed as he used both of his hands to pull on the collar around the woman’s neck. “It’s not budging!”
“Try something else!” JT screamed as he floated into the air as he zapped one of the other soldiers with a bolt of energy, sending the man crashing into a wall. “This is madness! These guys just keep coming! It’s like I’m throwing everything at them and they keep coming back!”
“Not for long,” Tara responded as she flew into the room, using her lasso to rope in two of the soldiers as she pulled them together, causing them to smash their heads together, shaking the lasso as the men fell to the floor as she pulled her lasso back to her and then grabbed another soldier, picking him up and then throwing him across the room and out of a window. “Conjurer, what’s taking you so long with that tiny collar?”
“I don’t know Amazon, there’s something wrong with it. It doesn’t want to come off,” Darren stated as the woman opened her eyes and then moved away from him quickly. “Miss, are you okay?”
“No! Please—please don’t hurt me!” The woman screamed out as Darren held up his hands.
“I’m sorry lady, I’m not trying to hurt you. I’m only trying to help you here,” Darren stated as JT appeared in between the woman and Darren.
“If you can’t get that thing off of her, I’ll try!” JT screamed as he reached for the woman as her eyes glowed brightly as a strange phenomenon appeared next to him and he was pulled into it.
“What in the hell did you do that for?” Tara asked as she pushed the woman backwards as she jumped for the phenomenon, but it closed before she could enter it. “Where in the hell did he go?”
“I don’t know,” the woman replied as she looked around. “Where am I? What’s going on?”
“What do you mean? Is there something wrong with your mind woman?” Tara asked as she grabbed the woman by the hospital gown that she wore. “Where did you send my friend?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” the woman replied as her eyes glowed brightly again as a strange phenomenon appeared behind Tara as she moved away quickly, turning around to see JT leap from the phenomenon, looking as if he were out of breath as he fell to the floor.
“Are you okay?” Tara asked as she looked at JT closely as she helped him up off the floor.
“What in the hell was that?” JT asked as he looked at the woman as if she were crazy. “Where in the hell did you send me?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” the woman replied as another phenomenon appeared in the room as General Ranger stepped through with more soldiers.
“Men, take them down now!” General Ranger stated with a smile as his soldiers rushed JT, Tara and Darren.
‘No, I won’t allow this!’ JT telepathically screamed out as he moved quickly, using his telekinesis, lashing out at the soldiers around, knocking all of them against the wall and held them there. “You won’t hurt anyone here!”
“That’s the guy I know!” Tara snapped as she used her lasso to rope General Ranger in as he pressed a button on his belt and then smiled. “Something’s going on guys, Conjurer you know what to do to me!”
“Got’cha babe,” Darren responded as he waved his hand in Tara’s direction as her clothing changed to something resembling a strange metallic armor as she landed on the floor and started throwing blows with General Ranger, pounding on an invisible barrier around his body as two soldiers attacked her from behind.
“Too late Ranger, your power dampening field isn’t going to stop me,” JT stated as he moved past one of the soldiers and then grabbed General Ranger by the throat, holding him tightly as the man struggled to breathe. “What have you done to the woman?”
“That… Is… Not… Your… Concern… Freak!” General Ranger barely got out as JT held him tight against the wall.
“I would rather you give me the information, than I have to go gallivanting through your mind, trying to find the information myself,” JT stated as his eyes flared with psychic energy as he and General Ranger floated above everyone else. “It’s all up to you man, but let me go ahead and tell you, I won’t be gentle!”
“You don’t scare me!” General Ranger stated with a smile as JT shook his head as his eyes flared brighter as the psychic energy manifested in the form of a firebird as it attacked General Ranger’s head. “What in the hell are you doing? My mind… My mind! It… My mind is on fire!”
“I told you I wouldn’t be gentle,” JT stated as his eyes crackled with psychic energy as a strange field of energy flared around General Ranger. “Her name is Helia Stroyer. His scientists experimented on her and—and some strange militia group attempted to sabotage the experiment, which resulted in her gaining the power to create and travel through the phenomenon we passed through earlier.”
“Malevolent, there’s something wrong! What’s happening with General Ranger?” Darren asked as he floated up to where JT and General Ranger were as he grabbed JT’s arm, pulling him away from General Ranger. “There’s a strange energy matrix around General Ranger… I can feel the energy pulsing around him. Something’s not right here.”
“Run!” JT screamed as he floated down to the floor, grabbed the woman and then waved his hand, disappearing as Darren grabbed Tara and faded from view also.
A Few Miles Away — An Emergency Room
‘Where’s Chase? I haven’t seen him around for a bit,’ JT telepathically stated as he appeared from his portal, carrying Helia in his arms. ‘Hello… can anyone hear me? Hello, where is everybody?’
“Look! It’s one of those super heroes!” JT heard someone yell as he turned around quickly, his powers altering his clothing, replacing his costume with his regular street clothes. “That’s so cool!”
“What in the world is going on around here?” JT asked as he looked around, noticing that a group of townspeople had gathered around him and his passenger. “Why aren’t these people running away? They—they’re just standing there, watching me, like this is something normal for them to see. Is it?”
“Maybe it is normal to them,” JT heard as he looked around, but didn’t recognize where the voice had come from.
“Hello,” JT spoke, walking towards the doors to the building. “Can someone help me here? I need to get a doctor.”
“Don’t worry about the people, just go on into the hospital,” JT heard as he looked around again, still not recognizing the voice or seeing the person the voice belonged to.
“Something doesn’t feel right here,” JT spoke as he looked around again and then stepped forward, his body floating off the ground with his passenger as he floated through the doors to the building, moving through the halls, but didn’t see anyone inside the hospitals. “Something is very wrong here… I’m not sensing any minds here at all. Where in the hell are we?”
“Maybe you’re in hell, maybe you’re not,” JT heard, but still didn’t know where the voice came from.
“Who are you? Where are you?” JT asked as psychic energy flared around his eyes as Helia disappeared from his arms as he fell to the floor. “Owww! What the hell! Why did I fall like that?”
“Probably because you’re mine now,” JT heard as he looked around and then got up off the floor quickly as he noticed that people were in the room, watching him.
“What in the hell is going on here? Where did all these people come from?” JT asked as he jumped into the air, but nothing happened. “I—I can’t fly. What in the hell is going on?”
“Have you had enough yet?” JT heard as he looked around again, still not knowing where the voice came from.
“Okay JT, what’s really going on here?” JT asked as he rubbed at his head. “One minute, I’m kicking Ranger’s ass telepathically and the next, I’m trying to escape from him and what was about to happen and now this… Whatever the hell this is. Where am I and what’s going on? Whatever this is, something just feels wrong.”
“That’s because something is wrong, you are wrong. People like you shouldn’t be,” JT heard as he looked around and noticed that the people that watched him before had changed and looked like ancient beings.
“I—I must be losing my mind here,” JT stated as he shook his head as he turned away from the beings near him.
“Maybe you are losing your mind,” JT heard the voice again as he shook his head.
“Asaya Masalli Magottai! Star Power Change!” JT screamed out as his body glowed brightly as his body floated into the air, shining brightly as his image shifted quickly, revealing a new set of clothes as what looked like angel wings appeared and then disappeared quickly as he floated back down to the floor. “It seems someone is trying to play some mind games with me. That’s my arena and things are about to change!”
“Are you fucking crazy?” Brian asked as he looked at Tara as if she were crazy. “Where in the hell is he? Did you two just leave without him? What in the hell is wrong with you two? I thought you were his friends!”
“Calm down Chase,” Tara spoke with a sigh as she shook her head.
“Yeah man, cool it,” Darren stated as Brian looked over at him and then shook his head.
“How dare you tell me to calm down!” Brian screamed as he threw up his hand. “You left him back there with those men! They—they could’ve killed him by now!”
“I don’t think anyone killed JT,” Tara stated with a frown. “Besides, we both saw him leave with the woman.”
“Yeah right, now I think you’re lying!” Brian snapped as he turned his back to Tara. “If he left, he would be here right now!”
“Did we really see him leave Darling?” Darren asked as he looked at Tara. “Did he really leave or is he still back there? Did he teleport away or did he use his powers to camouflage himself, like he did that time when he got you two into trouble, remember?”
“I—I don’t know what he did,” Tara replied, still frowning. “If he’s still back there, don’t you think he would’ve told somebody by now? Don’t you think we would’ve gotten some kind of sign like lightning or bodies being thrown out the building or something…”
“He’s probably unconscious or something and can’t tell anybody anything! You people are supposed to be his friends damn it! It seems like I’m the only one that truly cares about him around here!” Brian screamed as he shook his head as the tears streamed down his face. “You guys are real fucking losers!”
“Being that I’m a bit worried and concerned, I’m going to let you get away with that, without kicking your ass for what you just said,” Tara stated as she glared at Brian.
“You would have to catch me first,” Brian said as he displayed the middle finger to Tara as a strange phenomenon appeared as JT and Helia stepped from the portal.
“JT!” Brian screamed as he moved quickly over to JT, hugging him and then kissing his cheek. “You’re alive and okay.”
“Yeah, I’m alive and okay,” JT replied as he looked at Brian strangely.
“Sorry,” Brian said as he averted his eyes and moved away from JT quickly.
“What’s going on Malevolent? Are you okay?” Darren asked as he walked over to where JT and Helia stood.
“It seems Ranger tried to pull a mind trick on me,” JT stated as he shook his head. “He tried to use one of my own tricks against me. I caught on to what was going on and broke free before I thought I was losing my mind.”
“We don’t need you losing your mind J,” Tara stated as she walked over and patted him on the back. “Is she cool and clear?”
“She’s clear, but I don’t know about cool,” JT replied as he placed Helia’s body down on the ground. “It’s time to get that collar off of her.”
“How are you going to get it off?” Darren asked as he looked at JT strangely.
“Simple,” JT replied as he pointed his finger at the collar as a strange phenomenon surrounded the collar and then it was gone.
“J, did you morph her powers?” Tara asked as JT smiled and then nodded his head. “See, I told you that your powers just didn’t up and dissolve.”
“Yeah you told me that, but I think it’s time we made our exit,” JT stated as he looked over at Brian and then over to Darren. “Are we ready to leave here?”
“As ready as I’ll ever be,” Brian replied with a smile as JT sighed and then raised his hand as the five of them disappeared.
Bensonhurst, NY — The Home of Darren and Tara James — The Living Room
“Damn, it’s about time you guys showed up. Where have you guys been?” Jennifer asked as JT and his passenger appeared in the room. “Who’s the newbie?”
“She’s Helia Stroyer, she was one of General Ranger’s prisoners,” JT replied as he walked passed Jennifer as she grabbed his hand, stopping him from walking.
“Is she safe to be around us? Is she safe to be here?” Jennifer asked.
“Yes, she’s safe Jen,” JT replied with a frown. “I scanned her mind before I even decided to bring her with us.”
“What about the other prisoners? Do you know where they are?” Jennifer asked as she looked at JT closely.
“We’re going to find her Jen,” JT stated as his eyes glowed.
“Your eyes are glowing. Is there something wrong JT?” Jennifer asked as JT stepped back away from her.
“I—I must go,” JT stated as he turned around quickly and then vanished from the room.
“What in the hell… That was totally new,” Jennifer stated as she looked around at the others. “I’ve never seen him leave like that before.”
“I wonder where he went this time,” Tara stated as she looked at Darren and then walked passed Jennifer. “I’m hungry, anybody want anything?”
“Hey guys, I—I want to say something,” Brian announced as he moved in front of Tara, stopping her from going into the other room.
“What is it Brian?” Tara asked as he looked down.
“I—I’m sorry for how I acted back there,” Brian replied as he looked up at Tara with a sad look on his face.
“It’s okay for now,” Tara stated with a small smile. “Just don’t let it happen again.”
“I—I’ll try not to let it happen again. Sometimes I let my emotions get the better of me,” Brian spoke as he looked down again. “Sometimes I see things that aren’t really there. Just goes to show that I tend to place hope where hope shouldn’t be placed. Just another lesson I’ve learned.”
“Brian…” Tara stated as Darren grabbed her by the hand and then pulled her on into the kitchen. “Darren, what’s gotten into you?”
“Darling, I know where that conversation was headed and I say you just need to let it go,” Darren stated as he looked Tara in the face. “That young man is in love and…”
“And JT isn’t reciprocating,” Tara stated with a sigh.
“That’s the problem,” Darren stated with a frown. “Brian is looking for an instant love and I fear he’s not going to find it where he wants to. JT is a very cold man and Brian is trying start a fire that doesn’t have a spark…”
“Maybe he has a reason for being cold, I wouldn’t know. I haven’t spoken or seen him in a very long time. I don’t know what his life has been like since he left the team so long ago. Neither of us know what he’s been through, so we can’t make judgments about him being cold or whatever. Since I’ve known JT, he’s been one to keep his heart protected first. When we were kids, his heart was broken by one that he truly loved and that hurt hardened him. Since then, he keeps his mind focused on the tasks at hand.”
“There are other things to consider besides just the task at hand,” Darren stated as Tara just shook her head.
“Well for now, we’re just going to let JT and Brian handle their issues and we’ll work on the ones we have,” Tara stated as Darren raised an eye at her. “Yes, we have issues, like you thinking I was the one that busted the door or you hating on JT the way you have been.”
“Come on Darling,” Darren stated as Tara turned around and walked over to the refrigerator. “Baby, please I was only…”
“When you’ve made amends for your actions, I’ll let you know,” Tara stated with a small smile as she pulled items from the refrigerator to prepare for a quick meal.
Washington, D.C. — The Pentagon — A Secret Restrictive Area
General Ranger’s POV
Damn it all to hell! This can’t be happening again! I can’t believe he was able to get away like that! How am I going to explain this failure to the council? Hell, they’ve been keeping an eye on my progress with the program and they’re not going to like this one bit. With the loss of Stroyer, they’ll surely try to replace me with someone else. I can’t let them do that. I’ve invested too much of my life, my money and my time on working with this program. I have to get him back at all costs.
With the way things happened with Stroyer this evening, he shouldn’t have been able to get near her with that collar on and he shouldn’t have been able to touch me, being that the same technology in the collar is built into my armor. How was it that he was still able to use his psychic powers? The power dampeners were all on and he kept going as if they were not present. He was able to invade my mind without even breaking a sweat. I was told that the dampeners would make my mind impenetrable to all psychics, but that wasn’t the case. It seems the designer of the dampener and my armor needs to scrap this design and start again.
With all that’s happened over the past few months, I have to catch this black man. It seems everything I throw at him, something else happens so he’s able to escape me. I can’t let him escape me again. I have to capture him so we can discover what gives him his power. His power is the key to all the other powers that I’ve seen. Is it his mind that is the key or is there another answer? Whatever the case, the answers lies within his body and my goal is to catch him so I can gain those answers.
“He has Stroyer for right now, that may work to my advantage in getting him back to me,” I said under my breath as I walked into the area as the men there saluted. “Cadet, I need a squad of twenty men for a level seven assignment.”
“Yes sir,” the cadet replied as he saluted and then walked over to a computer terminal to handle my request.
I’m going to set up this new squad and then I’m going to make sure they are heavily trained in everything I can throw at them. Before I go after that black man again, I’m going to be sure that my men can take him down. I’m not going up against him unprepared. He will be mine again and once that happens, I’ll know his secrets, all of them.
To Be Continued…