Freaks and Monsters
With an IQ higher than any on record and a memory to rival any database Liam, the doctor could never be mistaken for normal, but he wasn’t quite a freak like Juliette or Dene. His gifts kept him in the lab constantly, studying the other Freaks and trying to understand where their gifts came from.
His most important job was also where his nickname came from. He was the doctor, the only one who could tell what was cause for worry. He was the only one who knew the difference between Dene with a fever and Dene with a bad mood.
As the doctor, Liam was the first person to go to when your gifts were going haywire. However for Juliette she came to him for a very different reason.
“It’s good to see you, darling.” He smiles, turning in her arms to pull her close against his chest. “I thought you were supposed to be working today.”
“Went wrong.” She mutters, speaking into his chest. “I fucked up again, Li. Another target dead and its all my fault... what’s wrong with me?”
He sighs. “Have you been taking the medication I gave you?”
“Religiously.” She promises. “But it isn’t helping. If anything, things have just been getting worse.”
“Hush love, I only gave them to you a few weeks ago. They’ll start helping soon.” He pulls away from her slightly, looking her straight in the eyes. “Now, do you want to tell me what happened or am I going to have to play the therapist?”
She smiles. “Can we say we did and do something else on that couch instead?”
He gives her a warning look. “Juliette-”
“Alright, alright. Let’s do the mental probing thing.”
He leads her into his living quarters right off the lab, pulling her down next to him on the couch. She tells him everything. Her task, the flash of red, and the way his brain seemed to explode inside of his own skull. But of course no details of the actual mission, they were too professional for that, not that he asked for any anyway.
“Last time you had to kill it was quick, there was no blood if I remember the autopsy report.”
“There’s never any blood.” Juliette responds. “When I need to kill I just... turn them off. It’s so easy to stop the brain from sending electrical signals to the spine, and from that point I just tell the heart to stop beating and it does. No blood and no mess. This is the second time ever that someone’s bled because of me.”
Unbidden the memory comes to her. She was a brand new recruit, only just out of police academy and partnered with an older man, David. He was set in his ways, by the book and she was the exact opposite, having used her little gift to get her this far anyway. They couple have been the perfect buddy-comedy but then he got mad at her. He threatened to report her for disobeying orders and she... panicked. She pushed too hard trying to change his mind and there was a flash of red.
“I didn’t mean to do it.” She whispers more to herself than the man sitting next to her, remembering the fear she’d felt when she realized David wasn’t breathing anymore. “I had no idea what would happen.”
He was still, he was limp, and she knew he was dead long before help ever arrived. They’d been working together for only a few weeks, no really difficult or dangerous cases. David was the first man she ever killed, the only death that still ate at her constantly.
“That was a long time ago.” Li says, breaking her from her thoughts. “You have more control now. You’re getting stronger and sometimes you’ll make mistakes but you can’t let it get you down, love. If you let every mistake eat at you you’ll go crazy. You... the rest of us freaks, we’re the first of our kind. Until I’m able to find a real way to control what we can do we will hurt people. It’s just a fact of life.”
Juliette moves towards him, and he pulls her close, resting a bare hand on her arm. Even with the contact she can’t read him. He’s special, he nulls everything.
“You aren’t a freak.” She sighs, looking up at him. “You don’t have to deal with killing people, you just save the rest of us when we lose control.”
He can’t hide his smile. “Oh love... you know I’m just like you, only prettier.”
She smiles and he pulls her onto his lap, slowly taking off her gloves and placing her bare hands on his face. “Try and read me.” He commands, leaning his head against her chest.
She leans her own head onto his, stroking his face softly but the best she can do is hear a small buzz. There are no images when she’s near him, no sounds, no colours. When they first met she managed to learn his name from touch alone. But as her powers increased so did his.
She breathes a sigh of relief, taking that as a sign that everything really is normal. She screwed up today, but Li’s right, it isn’t the end of the world.
He hugs her tightly as she relaxes. “If you’re really scared of losing control I’ve been working on some uniforms to help regulate the amount of effort you need to use your gift. No more accidental mind reading, but I haven’t tested to see if it works against surges. You want to be a model for me?”
She regrets saying yes the second she has it on. It’s purple and that’s about the only thing she likes about it. It’s skimpy, the arm length gloves really don’t do much for keeping her skin covered, and she can already picture getting a knife to her exposed midriff.
“I look like a hooker.” She deadpans before pausing and rethinking that statement. “No wait... I look like a space hooker.”
Li smiles. “Yes! At last we can live out my fantasy of being Captain Kirk.”
“We can change the design if you hate it...” He smiles, coming up behind her and dragging a hand along her stomach. “But for what it’s worth, I think you look amazing. Sexy as hell.”
She laughs, leaning against him. “Oh you’re awful. You’re just going to keep complimenting me until I fall in love with this aren’t you.”
“That’s the plan.” He admits. “But in all honesty how is it? Feel any different?”
“Oh completely! I feel heavy, but not physically. I think with some tweaking this might just work better than the pills.”
“Mmm alright.” He relents. “But lets stick with the pills until I get the suit tweaked, okay?”
She turns in his arms to kiss him, his own arms wrapping around her waist to hold her close. “I love you.”
He smiles against her lips, returning her kiss. “I love you more, Juliette. I’m glad you dropped by today.”
Li’s phone rings and with a sigh Juliette backs away. Only a few people have Liam’s personal number, and all of them are important. “I’ll go wait in your front office?”
He nods, distracted by the number on his phone. “Sounds good, love. I won’t be long. Can you check the door behind you? It’s been a bit sticky today.”
He answers the phone as soon as she’s out the door.
“Sir? ... Yes, sir. She’s here with me... it was another surge, they’re coming more frequently.... yes sir, she’s still on the medication, it’s increasing her strength as we predicted. I’ll start the others on the same medication as soon as possible.”
“If we continue regulating the medication as planned Juliette should be at full power within a few weeks. Drop her off in the middle of the city and she won’t be able to control herself. Deaths, destruction, all the funding our program needs is guaranteed once we send someone else to take her down.”
He doesn’t notice Juliette crouched next to the open door. It swung open again and she went to close it... she can’t believe what she’s hearing instead.