This story is set during the new CGI version of Captain Scarlet ©. Captain Ochre and Lieutenant Green are now female characters, Captain Grey is Scottish and Captain Magenta is now Italian. Doctor Fawn has been replaced with a new character called doctor Gold and is now Austrian. Symphony and Harmony have also swapped nationalities, so Symphony is now the Asian member of the Angels. You can find out more information on the new series at the following web site: www.captainscarlet.com
I do not own any of Gerry Anderson’s shows or characters so please don’t sue me. The only character I technically own is Rio-Jade Younger (Eternity Angel). Special thanks to Lady Hawk for helping me create her in the first place.
THE ANGEL TRILOGY: STORY 2
A ‘New Captain Scarlet’ story
By Kelly Winkworth
The red planet orbited silently around planet Earth. To the casual observer it was hard to believe that anything existed on the huge red rock. But the people of Earth knew that a terrible race of alien beings resided on the planet, a race intent on wiping out the entire human race.
That alien race was the Mysterons, who had the ability of retro metabolism. The power to recreate an object or person. But they were unable to control the object in question unless they had destroyed it first. Nobody knew if the Mysterons were native to Mars, or if they came from another planet in another universe. Whatever the case, the aliens had left the planet a long time before but machines had been left in their place to carry out the orders of the Mysterons, building the incredible complex that now existed on the surface of the giant red rock. The machines were unhurried in their work, which was the whole point of the war of nerves. Slow retaliation against their enemies was what the Mysterons wanted.
The thing they had control of on this occasion was something they hoped would help them to finally bring about the downfall of their number one enemy--Spectrum. It was actually a person rather than a thing. They had brought her back to life from the dead. Grave robbing was not their usual style but circumstances had changed. They planned to turn this person into their most dangerous weapon. A dangerous assassin with heightened senses and rapid healing. A killer that could easily get past Mysteron detectors and bring down the system from the inside.
Genetic engineering had never really been something that the Mysterons had been into before now but this time it was different. Creating clones in the conventional way had its faults, in that their weakness was electricity and Spectrum were able to find them out with Mysteron detectors. Spectrum also had Captain Scarlet, who was able to sense the presence of a Mysteron clone. The Mysterons wanted something stronger, more durable, something that Spectrum couldn’t spot so easily. The woman they were using as the basis of their experiment didn’t have heightened senses that came naturally. They would have to alter her DNA themselves.
Rio Younger opened her eyes and grimaced at the bright lighting. It was so bright it was almost painful. She tried to move but found that she couldn’t. She became aware of the fact that she was being held tightly to whatever she was lying on. There were strange sounds all around her. Those strange noises were the alien machines monitoring and stabilizing her body’s functions.
“Relax, you need to take it easy.” Rio recognized that voice. As her eyes focused, Rio saw the face of Captain Black.
“Where am I? What’s happening?” She questioned. “Why am I not dead?”
“You have been reanimated. You were chosen to help the Mysterons with their ultimate plan. You have been selected to help bring down our enemies on Earth,” Captain Black informed her.
“Spectrum,” Rio finished for him. Black nodded.
Rio could things being removed from her body. Moving her eyes to her arms, she could see the sleeves of her Angel uniform had been torn away and tubes and needles were removing themselves. The metal straps unbuckled themselves and Rio forced herself to sit. Her muscles screamed in protest as she did so. She felt strange, like a new woman. She looked around at the strange alien interior. It looked almost like an ordinary space complex but it appeared to be running without a crew. She glanced towards a portal shaped window over on her left and saw robotic machinery moving around on its own. Apart from Captain Black, she seemed to be the only person there.
“You have been genetically altered to help in our ongoing war against Spectrum,” Captain Black continued. “The Mysterons have given you not only the ability of rapid healing, you have also had your senses of sight and hearing altered to a heightened level and you have superior strength and intelligence. We have also improved your incredible fighting prowess. In short, you are an unstoppable killer.”
Rio held her hands up in front of her, turned them over and smiled. She liked the sound of that; she was a dangerous femme fatale. She looked down at her bear abdomen and began to remove the wires that were stuck there. Captain Black continued to explain that she was to return to Earth and to act as bait for Spectrum. After gaining access to Skybase she was to act as a mole for the Mysterons and to bring down the organization from the inside.
“But why me?” Rio asked, as she swung her legs round and got down from the table she’d been lying on. But as she tried to stand, her legs nearly gave way, forcing her to catch her balance by grabbing hold of Captain Black.
“Because they’ll find it easier to trust you. We know Captain Scarlet will want to believe you’re still alive. You were, and still are, his weakness.”
“You want to exploit his feelings for me? That’s despicable!” She laughed. “I love it!”
Captain Black rested his hands on the table, trapping Rio between himself and the table. “It’s a shame the Mysterons want to send you away to work alone, I would have enjoyed having you around.”
Rio grinned. “Well, you’ll just have to wait your turn, won’t you. I have a job to do. If I have enough energy after finishing with Scarlet, then you can have your turn.”
“You tease!” He growled gently.
The closeness between them began to play havoc with Rio’s head. She could remember so clearly how she had once felt about the man standing in front of her, blantely invading her personal space. At any other time she knew she probably would have been totally horrified at the sexual tension crackling between them. But that was the old Rio Younger, the ordinary human Rio. At that moment in time, she was really enjoying it. It was almost like the dark side to her personality had come to the surface and taken over; a side to her that she didn’t even realize she had.
“You want tease? I can give you tease,” Rio replied, pressing her body up against his as her arms wrapped around his neck.
Lieutenant Green was still receiving the unusual radio signals. She spun around in her seat and looked up at Colonel White. “Those signals are still coming through, colonel. I think somebody is trying to contact us.”
Colonel White rubbed his chin. “See what you can do, lieutenant. Lets find out who’s trying to get in touch with us.”
As Lieutenant Green tapped at the controls, a voice eventually crackled through the speakers. The voice chose not to identify itself and got straight to the point.
“A Spectrum agent is being held hostage in New York. The assailant is unknown. Only Captain Scarlet is to be sent here, alone and unarmed. We will send the coordinates of where to find the location.”
The signal suddenly disappeared. Colonel White and Lieutenant Green looked at each other, unsure of what to say or what to do. Was this some kind of strange Mysteron plot? Was a Spectrum agent really in danger? Colonel White knew that he couldn’t afford to not take it seriously.
“Get me Captain Scarlet and Captain Blue,” Colonel White finally said as the coordinates flashed up on the console.
Captain Scarlet stopped the Spectrum ‘Cheetah’ car outside the abandoned factory. He had done as the mysterious message had asked. He was alone and unarmed but Captain Blue was waiting in central New York, should he need the back up.
He stepped out of the car and looked up at the old, crumbling building. The roof seemed to be missing in huge sections, most of the windows were smashed or boarded up. Scarlet approached with caution, more than he would normally, especially as he was unarmed. Being virtually indestructible was one thing, but being reckless was completely another. Stepping through the crumbling door way, Scarlet screwed up his nose at the appalling smell of damp and decaying rodents. Pigeons sat in the rafters, cooing gently in the silence of the building’s shell. Although it was bright outside, it seemed dark inside the old factory.
Captain Scarlet walked in between the rows of the abandoned machinery, uncertain of what he was suppose to be looking for. There was suppose to be a Spectrum agent somewhere in the building but he had no idea who. Was it a woman? A man? Were they connected to Skybase or another part of the organization? Was their kidnapper also present? Or was it all just one big hoax by some bored prankster who was trying to give Spectrum the run around?
Suddenly he picked up on a noise, almost like feeble groan. The building was so quiet that the sound was very clear. Was somebody in trouble and trying to get his attention? He looked around and, through the darkness, he could make out an office over in the far left hand corner of the building. He quickened his pace, heading towards the voice....what sounded like a voice in any case.
At a distance he could make out a pair of legs through the door way. Yes, it was a person who looked like they were dressed in white. Scarlet broke into a run. Pushing the broken door out of the way, he was greeted by a sight that he couldn’t believe. The person who was tied up, gagged and sat in the corner of the room was Rio Younger. She looked up at him, her dark eyes almost pleading with him to help her. Her uniform was dirty and minus its sleeves. A large section that use to cover her abdomen was missing.
Trembling slightly, Captain Scarlet knelt in front of her and removed the tape from her mouth. He tried to find something to say but the words escaped him, the ability of speech had completely left him. It was impossible, how could Rio still be alive? She was dead. He had been there when it happened. The Angel pilot had died in his arms. But here she was, very much alive and breathing.
“Paul....you found me,” she whispered.
Rather than talk, Scarlet untied the ropes that bond her ankles. Leaning forward, Rio allowed him to remove the ropes around her wrists. Once they were freed Rio threw her arms around his shoulders and held him close.
“I--I thought I’d lost you forever........” Scarlet said gently, gathering her up in his arms.
Eventually pulling away from him, Rio looked at Scarlet. “I’m frightened, Paul. What’s happening to me? I shouldn’t be here.”
“I wish I knew,” Scarlet replied.
Scarlet helped her onto her feet. Rio wobbled slightly and used the nearby desk to keep herself upright. She had been tied up for so long that her legs didn’t want to work properly. Scarlet gently swept her off he feet into his arms and sat her down on top of the desk. Pulling out a discarded blanket from an open cabinet, Scarlet wrapped it around her.
“Take me back to Skybase with you,” Rio said, pulling the blanket tightly around herself.
“I don’t know about that.....” Scarlet began to say.
“Please!” She begged, pulling him closer to her. “Help me. The last thing I remember was lying in your arms.”
Scarlet wanted to take her back with him but he knew the colonel would never agree to it. He’d suspect, just like everyone else, that Rio was a Mysteron. But Scarlet knew she wasn’t a Mysteron, his very own Mysteron senses would tell him so if she was.
Scarlet’s better judgment beginning to fail him, as his feelings for Rio came flooding back to the surface. She gently caressed his face with her hand, fixing him with that frightened, pleading look again. The softness of her lips as she kissed him caused Scarlet to drop his guard and yield to her wishes. He lifted her up into his arms and carried her back to the Spectrum ‘Cheetah’ Car.
“How can this be possible? Eternity Angel was killed in action, captain. You know that as well as I do!” Colonel White listened to the radio transmission, fully convinced that Captain Scarlet had completely lost his mind.
“I know how it sounds, sir, but I’m telling you she’s alive. I’m with her now.”
Lieutenant Green looked at Colonel White. The look on her face said it all, she wasn’t sure whether to believe it either. It was no secret that Scarlet had taken Eternity’s death very badly and hadn’t really stopped grieving for her. Had Captain Scarlet finally lost all sense of reality or was Eternity Angel really alive?
“She must be a Mysteron, that’s the only possible explanation,” Colonel White continued, more to himself than anything.
“That’s just the thing, she isn’t,” Scarlet’s voice protested. “I should know better than anyone.”
Colonel White couldn’t do anything but agree. Captain Scarlet had been left with an almost sixth sense when it came to Mysterons, in the form of a wave of nausea whenever a Mysteronised clone got too close. If Scarlet said that she wasn’t a Mysteron, then perhaps she wasn’t.
Finally, Colonel White relented and said, “bring her to Skybase with you. We can get doctor Gold to look at her. But remember, captain, she’s your responsibility.”
Nobody could quite believe that Rio was back from the dead when Captain Scarlet brought her back to Spectrum’s floating base that day. As Captain Scarlet had suspected, everyone thought she was a Mysteron replacement, sent to Skybase to kill them. But what doctor Gold had to say on the subject was even more startling. He was in the Control Room with Colonel White when he broke the news.
“I’ve run blood tests, DNA tests, retinal scans....the works. She’s proved negative in all of the Mysteron tests. There’s no way she could be a Mysteron replacement. She is defiantly Eternity Angel.”
Colonel White steepled his fingers together and rested his chin on them, as though in deep thought. “I see....” He muttered. Looking up at the Austrian doctor, he added “and there’s no chance of a mistake.”
Doctor Gold shook his head. “None what so ever. The Mysterons can’t hide their DNA.”
“But how could it be possible, colonel?” Lieutenant Green asked, glancing over at her male colleagues. “We all saw Eternity Angel getting buried. And that certainly wasn’t an empty coffin they buried, I was at the chapel when the undertakers closed the lid.”
“I don’t know, lieutenant, your guess is as good as mine.” This uncertainty was what bothered Colonel White the most.
“I did notice one thing that was unusual though,” doctor Gold continued, feeling slightly uncertain as to whether or not he should reveal the piece of information that was bothering him.
Colonel White eyed him with mild interest. “Go on.”
“Well, when I carried out her blood and DNA tests I noticed that, even though she doesn’t have usual Mysteron DNA, she seems to have a similar genetic mutation to that of Captain Scarlet.”
“I assume you’re referring to Captain Scarlet’s ability of rapid healing,” the colonel inquired.
The Austrian nodded. “It would appear that way. But obviously I can’t be certain at this point. She would probably have to get injured before the idea could be explored.”
Rio walked back to her quarters, having just visited sick bay to find out the results of the various tests doctor Gold had done on her. She smiled to herself. She had passed all of his tests. They wouldn’t suspect a thing, not for a while at least anyway. All she had to do now was to work on her Spectrum colleagues; to regain their trust once again. She wouldn’t be able to get very far without it. A little of that trust was slowly beginning to come back on its own, mainly due to the fact that they trusted Captain Scarlet’s judgment. But Rio knew that wouldn’t be enough as they were still very wary of her.
As she was officially off duty until further notice, Rio was dressed in civilian clothes. Despite their shock, the Angels had agreed to at least let her borrow some clothes until Rio was able to sort herself out. All of her own clothes and belongings had been given back to her family after she had died. Destiny Angel was due to come back from Paris that day. She had agreed to pick up some things for Rio, mainly because they were the same dress size and no doubt the Angel would be able to find something suitable.
Rio entered her quarters and closed the door securely behind her. Making herself a coffee from the newly installed coffee maker, Rio sat down on her sofa and put her feet up. She rested her head on the cushion and closed her eyes. At least she had gotten her old quarters back, mostly due to the fact that no other personnel fancied the idea of taking over and living in the quarters of a dead woman.
Just as she was starting to relax, a voice filled her head. “Eternity Angel, this is Captain Black relaying instructions from the Mysterons. Make your way to the Engine Room and start carrying out your orders.”
Rio put down her drink on the floor and crossed to her bed. She knelt down and pulled out a small case of tools from under it. She had managed to steal them earlier that day from an unsuspecting engineer who had been working outside of sick bay when she had initially gone for her medical examination. Flirting was a very powerful weapon when used by an attractive woman.
Hearing the chimes of her quarters ring, Rio cursed inwardly and hid the case back under the bed. The Mysteron plan would have to wait for a while. The visitor was Destiny Angel, loaded up with several bags full with designer clothes.
“Oh thank you, Destiny, you’re a star!” Rio said with a smile. “You’re too kind!”
Destiny returned her smile. “It’s no bother. I can’t let you go without any clothes now, can I?”
A mischievous grinned crossed Rio’s lips. “Oh, I don’t know. I don’t think the guys would complain if I was walking around Skybase naked!”
The following week.......
Captain Scarlet stepped into his quarters and rubbed his eyes, his shift was finally over. He was thankful that he had the rest of the evening to himself and was off duty for the whole of the following day. His head was still reeling from finding out that Rio was still alive, even though it had been a week since he had found her. He took comfort in the fact that she was beginning to gain the trust of the other agents again.
Scarlet walked to the end of his bed and dropped his cap onto it. He unzipped his crimson tunic and was about to get changed when he heard the sound of glasses clinking against each other. The sound took him by surprise and he spun around, gun drawn.
“Oh please don’t stop on my account,” Rio said with a soft smile, not taking the slightest bit of notice of the gun.
Rio was leaning against the bathroom door frame and she was dressed in what looked like little more than white lingerie, a short white silken dressing gown wrapped loosely around her curvaceous body. She was wearing her long black hair loose and it flowed down passed her shoulders and down her back. In one hand was a bottle of white wine and in the other was two glasses.
“How did you get in here?” He finally managed to ask when he found his voice, finally putting the gun away.
With a flash of her smile, Rio said, “oh, you will find I can be very persuasive when I want to be. And Adam was more than happy to give me the access code for your room.”
She held up the bottle and glasses and added, “thought you might want some company. Sounds like you had a long day.” She moved from the doorway and approached him.
“You could say that,” he said, taking one of the glasses from Rio and allowing her to pour the non alcoholic wine into it.
After she poured one for herself, she put the bottle down on the nearby coffee table. “Cheers,” she said, clinking her glass against his and took a sip.
Scarlet could feel his heart beating hard against his chest. Rio looked so incredibly beautiful that he wasn’t sure if he would be able to resist her charms much longer. Her gentle perfume was intoxicating and it was beginning to mess with his head. It was almost as if she was reading his mind as Rio’s face split into a huge grin, her big dark brown eyes gazing longingly at him over the top of her wine glass.
“I assume the outfit isn’t just for your own benefit,” he inquired.
“I thought you could do with cheering up,” she said, that wicked grin still playing across her face.
She untied the cord of her dressing gown and allowed it to drop to the floor, along with her glass of wine. Stepping closer to him, Rio kissed him with such incredible tenderness that Scarlet’s guard completely crumbled. The wine glass slipped from his hand, spilling its contents across the floor. She slid her arms around his neck and pulled him closer to her. She could feel his hands snake their way around her waist. They fell back onto the bed as Scarlet called one last order to the voice command of the living quarters’ computer controlled environment. “Lights out!”
The engineer tapped at the keypad of the computers. He was in the Engine Room control centre, checking out some strange goings-on with the system. One of the engines had been acting up for the past few hours. It was nothing serious but all such problems were treated as such, as any kind of engine failure on Skybase could prove disastrous. He frowned as he lifted the top of a computer panel and noticed that somebody had tampered with the wiring inside. At least, that’s what it looked like. He shook his head and fixed it, giving it no more thought. Maybe it had just been a long day and he was imagining things.
The early morning sunshine streamed in through the windows of Captain Scarlet’s quarters. As his quarters were situated on the edge of Skybase, rather than being further inside the complex, he had the luxury of windows and was greeted by the sun most mornings. Scarlet opened his eyes, blinking against the light. Feeling somebody stirring in the bed next to him, Scarlet turned his head. Rio slept peacefully beside him. She looked so beautiful and serene in the early morning light. He watched her for a while, not quite believing what had happened the night before. Not only had she gained access to his quarters to surprise him, wearing little more than her underwear, but she had also blatantly offered herself to him. The temptation had been too much and they had spent the entire night together, their lust for each other finally getting the better of them.
Moving closer to the sleeping Angel, Scarlet kissed her lips softly. “Good morning, Sleeping Beauty, time to wake up.”
Rio’s eyes fluttered open and she smiled gently. “So, last night did happen. I was beginning to think it had been a dream.”
Scarlet returned her smile, not taking his eyes off her as her long black hair shimmered in the sunlight. Rio moved closer to him, draping her arm across him and resting her head on his chest.
“Why did you wake me?” she continued. “Neither of us are on duty today.”
“That may be so, but I knew you wouldn’t want to miss breakfast.”
Rio laughed. “I take it the colonel hasn’t given his approval for room service yet.”
“The last time I checked, he hadn’t.” Scarlet sat up slowly, so that Rio wouldn’t get thrown out of the way from her resting place.
Swinging his legs out of the bed, Scarlet picked up pieces of his uniform that lay nearby and headed for the bathroom. When he returned from his shower, Scarlet noticed that Rio was watching him. Resting her head on her hand, she seemed totally unashamed of the fact that the bed linen had moved down and was exposing her naked upper body.
As he did up his crimson tunic, Scarlet smiled at her. “You’re so beautiful.”
“You’re not so bad yourself.” Rio replied and beckoned him to sit on the bed.
Their lips met once again and, for a few moments, eating was the last thing on their mind as Scarlet lay down on the bed with her. It made Scarlet late for breakfast but it had been worth it for a beautiful morning with Rio.
“Some people get all the luck,” Captain Blue said, looking across the table at Captain Grey. They were both sat in the cantina and they had just seen Captain Scarlet walk in.
“What do you mean?” Grey asked, forgetting about his coffee for a moment.
Blue grinned. “I saw Eternity leaving his quarters this morning wearing practically nothing. Man, she looked hot! I think she stayed there all night from what Symphony was telling me as she didn’t see her all evening and Eternity wasn’t in her quarters when she went to check on her.”
“Lucky bastard!” Grey remarked as Scarlet walked across the cantina to join them.
Noticing the sudden silence that had settled between his two colleagues, Scarlet said “not talking about me, are you?”
Taking in the coffee and plate of toast, Captain Blue said “I thought you’d want more than that, considering you’ll be wanting to keep your strength up.”
“Am I missing something here?” Scarlet asked.
“We know all about Eternity,” Grey added.
“Oh, that....” Scarlet murmured.
“And speak of the devil, here she comes,” Grey continued, glancing past Scarlet towards the slid door of the cantina.
Rio’s entrance had caused a bit of a stir, as a wave of whispered conversation swept around the cantina. Dressed in tight black jeans and a white shirt tied up in a knot just above her navel, the young woman seemed completely unconcerned by the reaction of the people surrounding her as she strolled in arm-in-arm with Captain Magenta. She glanced over in the direction of Scarlet, Blue and Grey and grinned mischievously as she poured herself a coffee. Captain Blue and Grey looked at each other knowingly. Grabbing an apple from the fruit basket on the counter, Rio parted ways with the Italian captain, strolled over and perched herself on the edge of the table that the three officers were sitting at.
“I didn’t think we’d stay a secret for long,” Rio said, looking at Captain Scarlet.
“How do you know we were talking about that?” Grey asked.
“I saw you watching me when I came in, your faces said it all.”
Blue grinned. “Good to see you remembered to put some clothes on.”
At that moment, the lights in the cantina began to flicker and buzz unnaturally. The coffee machine and other machines on the counter that ran on electricity spluttered then shut off completely.
“What the....?” Captain Blue began to say.
“Power failure I’d say,” Rio said evenly, looking up at the lights that were struggling to hang on to their last bit of life.
“There seems to be some sort of power failure coming from the Generator maintenance room,” Lieutenant Green said. She tried to reroute some power to her communications system as Skybase’s systems crumbled around her ears at an alarming rate. “Power’s out in the cantina, Amber Room and Officer’s Lounge. Sick bay is running on emergency back up power only. If the generator fails completely, we’ll be in serious trouble.”
“Strange, that’s the second power problem this week,” Colonel White mused, looking over the lieutenant's shoulder at the map of Skybase on the screen.
Red dots flashed in the areas where the cantina, Amber Room and Officer’s Lounge were, confirming exactly what Lieutenant Green had said. An amber light flashed where sick bay was. It seemed strange that two incidents such as this had happened in such a short space of time and had coincided with Rio’s return. Were these events connected or was he just becoming paranoid?
It was midnight and Rio was sat on the Promenade Deck, staring across the star covered sky at the full moon. Rio had noticed that her Spectrum colleagues were beginning to become suspicious of her again. They, too, had noticed that the various power problems had started when Rio had come back to Skybase. She knew she would have to act on the final part of the Mysterons orders very soon before Spectrum worked out what was going on. Getting up from her seat, Rio picked up the tool case at her side and left the Promenade deck, making her way to the engine room.
“This is the voice of the Mysterons. We know that you can hear us, Earth men. We will be avenged for your unprovoked attack on our Martian base. We will bring down Spectrum Skybase from the inside when Beauty destroys the Beast.”
“I’m telling you, it’s Eternity Angel. It’s the only obvious explanation. She’s the Mysteron who’s going to destroy Skybase.” Captain Blue wasn’t about to back down on this argument. He glared across the room at Captain Scarlet. They were in the Officers’ Lounge.
“How can you say that?” Scarlet spat back in equal venom. “She isn’t a Mysteron! The Mysteron detectors would have said as much if she was. Doctor Gold would have noticed it in her DNA.”
“How do we know that the Mysterons haven’t found some sort of way to get around all of that? To somehow fool our equipment?”
Scarlet shook his head, not wanting to believe what was happening. Colonel White was all for having Rio arrested but he didn’t want to go charging in for fear of provoking her into something irrational. They would have to lull her into some sort of trap and apprehend her that way. Scarlet hadn’t liked the idea one bit and had refused to take any part in the plan. He had gone to the Officers’ Lounge to blow off some steam but had ended up in a confrontation with Captain Blue.
Captain Blue’s temper cooled slightly and he added, “come on, come back to the control room. Help us apprehend Eternity before she causes too much damage to Skybase.....and herself. We owe her that much.”
Just as Scarlet was about to agree, alarms began screaming through Skybase. The two officers looked at each other, fearing the worst was possibly about to happen. Captain Blue’s cap microphone flipped down and he was greeted by the voice of Colonel White.
“Captain, I want you and Scarlet back here in the control room now! It’s been reported Eternity Angel has attacked several engineers in the main generator room. She was last seen heading towards the main engine generators. I don’t need to remind you what this means. It’s obvious that the Mysterons are planning to take out our power supplies.”
“Understood sir,” Captain Blue replied. Looking at Captain Scarlet, he added, “what more proof do I need?”
As Skybase was being evacuated, Captain Scarlet headed towards the main generator area of their airborne base. His job was to apprehend the rogue Angel and to kill her if need be. He really didn’t want to be in this situation, especially as he knew he was falling in love with her more and more with each passing day. Gun in hand, he entered the huge generator room. He knew that the weapon probably wouldn’t be much use, especially if Rio was a Mysteron. He glanced around, not knowing where to start looking. He didn’t have much time, the whole of Spectrum was relying on him to save their base.
Hearing footsteps echoing from above his head, Scarlet headed up the nearest stairs to the maintenance platforms that crisscrossed across the generator room’s ceiling. He recognized the silhouetted shape ahead of him as he reached the top of the stairs.
“Stay where you are, Eternity Angel!” He called, aiming his gun at the silhouette. The silhouette stopped and stepped into the light, revealing that indeed it was the Angel pilot.
“Well, well, well, look what the cat dragged in. I was wondering when you’d work it out.” Rio’s voice seemed cold and uncaring.
“How could you?” Scarlet asked bitterly.
Rio laughed. “Can I help it if men are stupid enough to fall for a beautiful woman?” Taking in the gun, she added, “now, I know you really don’t want to shoot me.”
“How do you know what I want? I have a job to do. I know you’re the Mysteron that’s been sent to destroy Skybase.”
Scarlet felt so angry with himself for letting himself get so emotionally involved with her; for letting her take advantage of him. Rio slinked forward with that same seductive smile on her face that he had encountered on their night of passion. Scarlet could feel his hand with the gun in it begin to tremble slightly. But he was determined not to let her win him over again, however much he cared about her. Rio put her hand on the barrel of the gun and gently pushed it away from her.
“Don’t be a fool, Captain Scarlet, you won’t win. Yes, I am the Mysteron agent. I intend to blow this tin can out of the sky. If I need to die doing so, then I will, and I have no qualms about taking you with me.”
Scarlet stared at her in disbelieve. “You’d be happy to kill both of us just to make a point to Spectrum? That’s crazy!”
“Maybe....but you’re not going to stop me!” Rio spat nastily. She then pulled out a small detonator that had been hidden about her person. “Now this little baby here is the only thing standing between me and the destruction of Skybase.”
“Not if I can help it!” Scarlet snarled.
He knew that the only thing left for him to do know was to physically stop her, otherwise there would mean totally obliteration of everything he stood for. Mysteron or not, he wouldn’t allow her to do that without at least trying to stop her.
Scarlet lunged forward but, with lightening quick reflexes, Rio had darted out of the way, hiding the detonator back inside her clothes. Using his momentum against him, Rio struck him across the back with a blow between the shoulders, making him fall to the ground. His gun skidded along the platform and stopped just out of his reach. Scarlet tried to crawl forward to grab it but he was met with a sharp kick in the right side of his rib cage. As he tried to move again, he was met with another blow to the ribs. The pain was intense and Scarlet was sure that they were broken.
Rolling over, Scarlet was greeting with a blow across the face. He felt his whole head shake with the force of the blow. Rio was standing over him and got ready to hit him again. Pulling his legs up and placing his feet into Rio’s abdomen, Scarlet pushed her off him with all his strength. Rio lost her balance and fell flat on her back, striking the back of her head on the railings as she fell. The blow would have caused serious damage to an ordinary human, but Rio got straight back up again. She seemed completely unfazed by the blood seeping from the wound and trickling down her neck.
Fighting against the pain of broken ribs, Scarlet forced himself to get to his feet to face the next barrage of kicks and punches that he knew would come. Rio continued her assault on the captain with a flurry of martial arts kicks, forcing him back along the platform. Scarlet blocked what he could but was overwhelmed by her speed and sheer strength. He should have known that he wouldn’t stand much chance in a fight with her, taking into consideration that Rio was a kick boxing instructor and black belt fifth dan in Judo. But where had this superhuman strength come from? What had the Mysterons done to her exactly?
Going against all that he had grown up being taught about not hitting a woman, Scarlet swung a right hook but his fist was blocked by Rio’s quick reflexes. Rio, in turn, struck back with a head butt, breaking Scarlet’s nose. As he stumbled backwards, Rio darted forward and grabbed the gun that Scarlet had dropped.
“Don’t take another step,” she hissed as Scarlet started towards her. “Don’t make me use this thing.”
“Go ahead, you’ll have to kill me before I let you set off that bomb.”
The gun shots echoed around the empty generator room, piercing Scarlet’s torso. He felt the pain as the bullets tore through his body. Rio smiled evilly as Scarlet dropped to one knee.
Pulling the detonator back out from its hiding place, Rio knelt down in front of him. “Say good-bye to your life and every pathetic thing you stand for, Earth man.”
As her evil laugh filled his ears, Scarlet’s anger began to boil over. Rio backed away from him, those cold eyes glaring back at him. With one final burst of energy, Scarlet grabbed her and forced the detonator from her hand. Rio broke free of his grip but, at the same time, lost her footing and fell against the railings. The railings gave way under the force and Rio’s weight, sending her falling several hundred metres to her death. Scarlet tried to stop her but he wasn’t quick enough. He staggered forward to the gap in the railings and looked down. Rio’s lifeless body was lying in the dark recesses of the generator room.
The pain of his injuries were getting too much and Scarlet collapsed to his knees again. He couldn’t focus anymore, no matter how hard he tried to fight it. Eventually everything went dark as Scarlet’s body yielded to his injuries and he blacked out.
Everything seemed blurred and painfully bright that it was difficult to focus. Captain Scarlet shut his eyes again to shield himself from the strong lighting. His body seemed to hurt all over as he moved.
“Good to see you’re awake, captain.” Scarlet attempted to open his eyes and found doctor Gold standing at the side of the bed, although he too seemed blurry.
Finally finding his voice, Scarlet asked, “where’s Eternity Angel? Is she okay?”
“If you mean, ‘is she still alive?’ then yes. But she certainly isn’t okay.” Doctor Gold indicated towards a bed at the other end of the room.
Captain Scarlet forced himself to sit up, despite the pain, and he propped himself up on his elbows. Rio was surrounded by life support equipment, a tube was protruding from her mouth to aid her breathing. Her black hair had been shaved off and her head was wrapped in heavy bandages. The heart monitor beeped slowly, registering a young life that was struggling to survive.
“Eternity Angel is alive but only just. She’s in a deep coma.”
“But she will recover, right?” Scarlet asked hopefully.
“I don’t know, captain. Not only did she suffer trauma to her spine, she also suffered massive head injuries in the fall. We had to perform emergency surgery to relieve the pressure, which has stabilized her somewhat, but she still has severe brain swelling. As it stands, the life support is the only thing that seems to be keeping her alive right now. You must prepare yourself for the worst.”
Captain Scarlet felt like the bottom had dropped out of his world. Rio could be about to lose her life again and, yet again, it was all his fault. If only she hadn’t have fallen from the maintenance platform. He felt so angry that he had the ability of rapid healing yet the lives of others around him were so fragile.
The following day......
Looking across the room from his control desk, Colonel White asked “I assume that Captain Scarlet is with Eternity Angel?”
Lieutenant Green nodded but did not look up from her computer. “Yes sir. He hasn’t left sick bay since he recovered from his injuries.” It didn’t matter how hard she tried to hide it, the colonel couldn’t help but notice the slight shake in the lieutenant’s voice.
Colonel White sighed gently. He should have guessed that Captain Scarlet would have taken it badly and would have wanted to stay at Rio’s side until the very end. Whatever that end might ultimately be. His unwavering loyalty to the Angel pilot wouldn’t allow him to leave her, even if it meant skipping his turn on duty and running the risk of a reprimand.
Rio was transferred into the women’s ward and remained in her coma for several days after the incident. Scarlet kept an almost constant vigil at her bedside, only leaving to eat or get some sleep. Not that he was able to do much of either. He had lost his appetite and every time he tried to sleep, he was plagued by awful nightmares of what had happened; haunted by the sight of her lying in the ward with only machines to keep her alive. He spoke to her constantly during his long visits, although he was unsure if she was able to hear him.
One evening, as Scarlet made his way back to sick bay, he was met by one of doctor Gold’s medical team members. He recognized the nurse immediately as Keira Atkinson, an attractive red head from Kansas.
“I have good news for you, captain,” she said with a smile. “It appears that Eternity Angel is starting to get better.”
Hardly waiting for her to continue, Scarlet hurried into the room. His heart lifted when he saw that the breathing tube had gone and Rio was now breathing unassisted. Doctor Gold looked away from the heart monitor and smiled as the captain approached.
“You’ll be pleased to know that Eternity Angel is showing signs of recovery. It seems that my earlier assumptions were correct, she has the ability of retro metabolism too. The swelling of her brain has decreased and normal motor functions seem to be returning. But I must stress that it is still early days, Eternity has a long way to go yet. Even if she does recover, there’s still the possibility she could be paralyzed. I have no way of knowing how advanced her retro metabolism is. It could be different to yours.”
Scarlet could hardly believe what he was hearing. The Mysterons had got something right for once, something that could work to her advantage and to help her survive her terrible injuries. As much as he tried not to get his hopes up too high, it was difficult. But he knew that Rio was a fighter; she always had been. Scarlet hoped that this fighting free spirit would be enough to pull her through.
He stayed at Rio’s bedside until late into the evening. As much as he tried to fight against it, tiredness finally got the better of him. Resting his arms on Rio’s bed, Scarlet lay down his head and gave in to some much needed sleep. Doctor Gold walked into the room, with the intention of politely reminding Scarlet that visiting hours were over. But when he saw that he had fallen asleep, he didn’t have the heart to wake the officer.
Scarlet wasn’t sure how long he had been there but he suddenly became aware of a hand gently caressing his face. Curious to know who the mystery hand belonged to, he opened his eyes.
“Feeling better?” A woman’s voice asked. Scarlet lifted his head and saw Rio smiling back at him from her resting place on the pillow.
“Rio!!” Scarlet exclaimed, jumping to his feet and knocking the chair over as he did so. “You’re awake!”
Doctor Gold entered the room, wanting to know what all the commotion was about and looked like he was ready to reprimand the captain for making so much noise when there were other patients around. But, noticing that the Angel pilot was awake, his annoyance calmed.
“Good morning, Eternity, it’s good to see you’ve finally returned to the world of the living,” the Austrian commented, as he checked the life support equipment.
“What time is it?” Scarlet asked.
Scarlet couldn’t believe it, he had actually managed to get some sleep for once. He smiled down at Rio as doctor Gold monitored her progress and decided that Rio didn’t need the machines to keep her alive anymore.
The excitement of Rio’s waking and apparent release from Mysteron was short lived. Later that day, Colonel White had called the officers and Angel pilots to the conference room. He felt that what doctor Gold had to say should be heard by all of them.
The doctor knew that what he was about to say wouldn’t be taken very well by all of the officers. “Although Eternity Angel is well on the way to making a full physical recovery and has seemingly broken free of the Mysteron hold over her, it appears that her memory has been affected.”
“How do you mean, affected?” Scarlet asked.
“She is suffering from amnesia, probably caused by the head injuries she endured in the fall.”
“How bad is it?” Destiny Angel inquired.
Taking in Destiny’s look of concern, doctor Gold continued “while Eternity Angel can remember what her name is, she is unable to remember her life, both past and present. She doesn’t remember being a spy with the Federal Agents Bureau or being a Spectrum Angel pilot. She can’t even remember her own family.”
“She doesn’t even know she’s the World President’s daughter?” Colonel White asked. Doctor Gold shook his head.
“Is there any chance that her memory will return?” Scarlet asked. This whole situation seemed to get worse with everything passing moment. While it was great that Rio was alive and free from the Mysteron hold, the thought of her losing her memory seemed too cruel for words.
“I have no idea if her memory will return. It could take weeks, maybe months or even years. It might not ever return.” He looked at Scarlet and continued, “I’m sorry to have to tell you this.....all of you,” he added quickly, glancing around at the other officers.
Two days later........
Rio was sat on her bed, fully dressed and waiting for doctor Gold to discharge her. She felt so empty without the memories of anything that had happened to her. Why couldn’t she remember her past? Rio closed her eyes and sighed. It felt horrible knowing the faces around her and knowing the names, but not knowing why she knew them. A huge part of her life was missing. She had appreciated the visits from some of her Spectrum colleagues, who had told her a little about her past, but she still couldn’t shake that awful feeling of emptiness.
Hearing the door of the women’s ward click open, Rio opened her eyes and looked up at nurse Keira Atkinson. She was clutching the release forms. Walking over to Rio and handing the forms, nurse Atkinson said “you have a visitor.”
“What does he look like?” Rio asked, but she already had a good idea. “Assuming it is a guy, of course.”
“Tall, dark haired, good looking, gorgeous blue eyes....”
“Hello, Paul,” Rio called towards the door, to which Captain Scarlet opened and strolled in.
“Good afternoon, miss Younger,” he said with a nod. “Feeling better?”
Rio couldn’t help but smile. “Yes, thank you, much better.”
The officer helped Rio down from the bed. They gazed into each other’s eyes for a brief moment as the officer slowly moved his hands from around her waist and picked up the small hold all from the end of the bed. Rio removed her hands from his shoulders.
“Got everything?” He finally asked.
“I think so,” she replied.
As they began to walk out of sick bay, Scarlet became aware of the fact that Rio had taken hold of his hand. Glancing over at her, Scarlet was met by her huge dark brown eyes gazing at him.
“Thank you for staying with me in sick bay,” she said softly.
Scarlet looked at her, slightly surprised. “How did you know I was there?”
Rio frowned slightly but then her features softened again. “I just knew. I can’t explain why, I just did.”
He smiled gently. “I didn’t want to leave you. I felt kind of responsible for what happened to you.”
They came to a halt outside of Rio’s quarters. The sun was streaming through the huge window opposite them. The sun made Rio’s black hair shimmer. Due to having her head shaved, and her ability of retro metabolism, her hair had grown back rather untidily and was currently hanging just below her ear lobes.
Handing her the bag, he added, “you take it easy now. You’ve had a rough time. I might even drop by later and make sure that you’re okay.”
“I’d like that,” Rio replied gently.
Rio turned to open the door of her quarters. The code for the room was one of the few things she had remembered. Before she typed in the code, she hesitated and looked around again.
“It’s obvious that you seem to know me better than anyone here,” she started. “I was wondering..... would you help me try to remember who I am?”
Scarlet felt honoured that she would ask such a thing of him. He nodded. “Yes I will,” he said without hesitation. “I promise.”
This was one promise he intended to keep. With everything that had happened, with everything they had been through together, he owed her that much. Leaning forward, Rio gently kissed him on the cheek and disappeared into her quarters.
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