Part 19

From the Story Arc: Changes

Previous Story in the Arc: Part 18 by Khrushchev (Tuesday, March 01, 2005)

Next Story in the Arc: Part 21 by Khrushchev (Tuesday, March 08, 2005)

(posted Wednesday, March 02, 2005)


Soviette sat down and tried to enjoy her coffee, staring out the window watching people walk by seemed to help keep her mind off recent events. “I like this place, hard working blue collar workers, like back in Moscow, no stuffy shirts, no people ordering coffee with five different names in them, no one going online with their palm pilots and handheld devices, don’t you think?”

“What?” Petrograd responded as if everything she just had said went right past him. She turned to see if he was paying attention.

“What are you doing?” Soviette put her hands on her head as Petrograd stared down at his small hand held computer.

“Checking my email, making some contacts stuff like that”. Petrograd still did not make any eye contact and continued busily typing away.

“You’re not paying attention to anything I say are you?” Soviette remarked as she watched Petrograd move at a frantic pace.

“Sure I am, oh look at that, cool, that ones got to be better than mine” Petro said as he checked out the latest processor from Intel.

“What did I says then?”

“Umm…Stand up and fly right”.

Soviette could just shake her head in disbelief, she knew nothing was going to pull him away from that computer. “I have to get back, let me know what you find.” Soviette stood up picking up the few napkins she used pushed in her chair.

“You’re leaving so soon? You should stay this place kind of reminds me of Moscow don’t you think so?” Soviette shook her head in disbelief, grabbed her things and left to go back to the lab.

Walking towards the lab she stopped by Workers Torch “your lab is making some beeping noises, sounds like loud tones” Soviette at first did not know of what to make of the sounds he spoke of. “I went in and did not see anyone, well other than Comrade Khrushchev, I think the sounds maybe coming from that box near his head, I smacked it a couple of times to get it to stop, but I may have changed the settings, sorry.”

“No the settings are done from my computer there are no controls on the unit itself other than the power switch but that is underneath.”

Torch wiped his head in relief, “whew…thought I broke it especially when the number kept going down like that. Well just thought I would let you know have a good one.” Soviette now under more duress quickly ran into the lab, sprinting towards Khrushchev’s bedside. The register now read sixty four, she had missed her first target, her face dropped as if she had just seen a ghost. Dropping her coffee to the ground the cover fell off causing it to puddle on the floor. She ran to her desk and started the computer to get ready for the procedure.

“Commissar Blade are you there it is urgent?” Soviette paged Blade in her office, no response.

“Soviette is that you?”

“Da”

“Iron Soviette here, I was dropping off some stuff for the Commissar and I heard your page”.

“Where is she?” Soviette speaking as quickly as possible a sense of urgency came over her voice.

“She’s out on a mission with Bestial Boy and some of the other officers, going after Anti-Matter I think, you know the arch villain”. Soviette dashed out of the lab as the computer began to run the program ‘Changes’. Making her way to Saviour’s office she burst through the door like so many seemed to be doing lately, she did not find Commissar Saviour but rather Agn Stratonik with his feet up on the desk. This caused him to quickly sit in his chair properly and then stand up to salute.

“Doctor is good to see you” Agn spoke hoping she did not notice his feet upon the Commissars desk.

“Where is Saviour?” Soviette spoke out of breath from running here as fast as she could.

“She went to Las Vegas I believe with Mosca, or at least that’s the rumor”.

“Damn…What are you doing here then?”

“Well while she was gone she asked if I could replace the tile around her desk, and I did, but unfortunately I did not follow the guidance of Comrade Hammer who suggested I work from one side and move towards the other evenly. Instead I worked backwards towards me and I well stranded myself, so I figured relax and wait till the grout dries”.

“Did Petrograd sign back in?”

“No actually I heard he got called by Blade to help in a mission.”

“So there is no one here?”

“Well I’m here”. Soviette did not stay to finish the conversation, she knew she had to work quickly as decision making time had come and gone, now it was working solely on instinct.

“Wait come back, can you open a window or something I think these fumes are starting to get to me…Soviette…anyone?”

Back in the lab as Soviette ran in a now to familiar warning tone went off, she glanced over as she ran to her desk, “Sixty three, damn, no time for any choices, no help to be found any where”.

The computer model was now up and running, “life signs failing, erratic brain waves, look at that activity” Soviette spoke to herself as she glanced towards Khrushchev, who still lay motionless. “What could possibly be going on in the mind of yours?” she asked Khrushchev knowing there would be no response.

“Figures gone two minutes and already someone is checking out my room”. Walking in slowly he drew his gun, a light was on in his bathroom, clanking noises from what sounded like metal hitting metal, shadows moved under the crack of the door.

“Don’t move or you’re dead” now pointing the gun directly at the person sitting on his bathroom floor, the man turned towards Khrushchev.

“Well if I don’t move I won’t be able to fix your sink here” John replied. John was the maintenance guy assigned to the building, he maintained almost everything and was timely and efficient.

“How did you get in?” Khrushchev questioned as he put his gun away leaning it upright against the wall.

“Skeleton key, opens any door, I knocked first, when I didn’t hear anything I just assumed you were out”. John stood up grabbing a rag to wipe his hands, he turned towards the sink turning the faucet on, and water poured out filling the basin.

“Good as new” he smiled as he began to pack his stuff.

“Thanks I guess” Khrushchev walked out of the room and sat on his bed.

John grabbed his tool case and walked over, placing it on the ground, grabbing a chair he at next to him, “that doesn’t sound too good, what could be that bad?”

“Well I am just having a difficult time adjusting, I keep getting these images pictures in my brain”.

“Yes go on”.

“Voices talking to me but there incoherent, sporadic, I think there trying to…” Khrushchev paused momentarily, looking at John “what the hell am I telling you for, what do you fix sinks and are a psychologist?”

“Yeah I do windows too” John remarked as Khrushchev got up and paced around the room. “My wife says I am a good listener, it’s probably that she never shuts up is more it then listening”.

“He knows to much take care of it now…” a whisper in his head, Khrushchev rubbed his ear “take your path…”

“Stop!” Khrushchev yelled clinching the sides of his head.

“Stop what? I didn’t say anything”, John replied as he tried to see what was going on trying to get a glimpse of his eyes. A vision came into Khrushchev’s head, vision of pain and suffering, not his own but of everyone else. He finally understood his mission, what he was meant for, destruction, death, he was not a man but a machine twisted and evil.

“Now do it now…take him, finish the job” the whispers grew louder in his head, Khrushchev nodded in agreement. Reaching into his top dresser drawer was like reaching into an arsenal grabbing a long hunter’s knife by the blade. He stopped for a moment and just sat there, this seemed all too familiar to him. “I have done this before I know I have I remember grabbing a hold of this knife, but why, what am I supposed to do?” Khrushchev continued to think in his head, a horrible case of déjà vu was with his every move his every thought.

“Well listen I have to go now, other things to fix been good talking to you…I guess”. John got up to leave grabbing his tool bag he left Khrushchev’s room.

“Come on Comrade one last try snap out of it” Soviette spoke back at the lab, but Khrushchev could hear it now.

“Soviette where are you?” he did not get a response. Dropping the knife back in the drawer Khrushchev walked out of his room. Something was different this time like the decision he just made had changed a series of events.

“Sixty two, dam come on hold on” Soviette continued to try desperately to do everything she could to keep him stable, but the condition continued to worsen. Khrushchev stopped briefly as again he could here a female voice but could not tell where it was coming from.

“Saviour….” Khrushchev walked into her office, Saviour no longer on the floor picking up the papers, but do to the extra time added from earlier she was now standing behind her desk facing the door.

“You made your choice Khrushchev, leave that’s what you want to do, no one is going to stop you”. Saviour spoke sternly, she had enough of his tirades and felt best to not even give him the satisfaction of letting him get to her. “Just leave” she yelled, “that’s what you want isn’t it? To be alone to be miserable”.

“No I do not want to be miserable I want to apologize, my actions before were uncalled for and out of line and out of character. I was disrespectful to you, Commissar Blade and everyone else in the CCCP and Red Brigade”. Saviour smiled and walked towards Khrushchev extending her hand.

“Spaciba Comrade, I accept your apology does that mean you would like to stay with us?” Saviour said as she looked up at Khrushchev.

“Yes I would, if you will have me”.

“Excellent, then here these are yours” Saviour walked back to her desk grabbing the two insignias Khrushchev had torn off before, one the CCCP super group badge and the other was his Officer’s Star. “Here these belong to you”, she reached out placing the two pieces in his now out reached hand. As she placed them in his hand they began to fade away.

“What is going on where did they go?” Khrushchev looked stunned as the fabric disappeared. He quickly looked back at Saviour, she appeared to be fuzzy almost out of alignment with time.

“What’s the matter Comrade?” her voice was deep and disjointed, she too began to fade.

“No what’s happening to me?” Khrushchev turned around the room and began to fade further and turn black as if the walls of time and space were being ripped down like wallpaper.

“Sixty one” a deep voice spoke but still had the sound of Soviette.

“Soviette…Soviette is that you? Help me please, I’m scared, I don’t want to be alone…” Khrushchev paced around in a panic as everything and everyone had disappeared he was left in total darkness.

“I’m sorry comrade, I have failed you” Soviette’s voice trailed off like everything else had. “Computer execute program changes”. The computer’s screen brought up a pop up box that read ‘are you sure yes or no’, she clicked the mouse on yes and sighed.

Khrushchev looked down at his feet they began to slowly disappear, he felt his heart begin to go into shock, and the pains in his chest were immense as his biological systems shut down soon to be replaced with the artificial properties of a machine.

“Oh my God please help me someone can anyone here me, the pain, please someone…I’m still alive please don’t do this…” his voice trailed off, he was gone.

Hours had passed and the program had completed, the screen indicated a successful completion. The group of Commissars Blade and Bestial Boy along with Officers and several other members had returned from a successful mission and the end to Anti-Matters evil ways. They all had been sent an email indicating an emergency meeting at the medical lab. While most prayed and held hope a few knew the chances were little but were still not ready to loose hope.

Entering the lab they found Soviette still at her desk, finishing up the last of the work, “Soviette…” Blade tried to grab her attention. Soviette stopped typing, grabbed the mouse clicked it a few times and pointed behind her. Khrushchev walked out in full armor, full helmet with comm. Unit attached. He approached the group, who all stopped to stare, and wonder what had happened.

“Comrade Khrushchev is good to see you” Blade spoke trying her best to maintain hide her feelings. She did not elicit a response. She spoke again “Comrade Khrushchev do you know who I am?” he turned and looked down at her.

“Yes I do” he spoke methodically.

Gato had been in the back along with Hammer and Soviet and several others, she smiled as everything seemed ok, Hammer reassured her “See I told you he would be fine”

“Who am I Comrade?” Blade asked again.

“You are Central Committee Commissar Blade, head of the CCCP”, continuing in his monotone voice Khrushchev scanned the room, identifying each person in the room and there name, rank and current status.

“And you are…?” Blade questioned him again, the room went quiet.

“I am Khrushchev…a fully functional and operational unit, comprised of advanced Crey technologies and of a composite alloy, my memory banks include…”

“Stop, you do not need to continue” Blade said as the happiness left the room and a heavy feeling of despair replaced it.

“Comrade do you have feelings?” Soviette asked as she thought this would be the question to answer all questions.

“Feelings is a human emotion, I’m sorry I do not function that way, perhaps a change to my processor and I could understand”. The answer was what everyone had feared, Soviette sat back down, starring at the ground, several others had began to tear up, Blade offered them her Hello Kitty hanky’s, Khrushchev looked on and then back to Commissar Blade.

“Is there something wrong with your eyes? They are draining fluids, perhaps Doctor Soviette can prescribe you drops or an ointment”.

To be continued…