The Traveler: Dominic Cruz, aka Deimos
Chapter Seven: Second Coming
... Ten minutes from the Angel Falls city landfill...
It had not taken very long for the AFPD's Special Crime Unit to assign a trio of squad cars to head over and check out what they had heard from the guards and security forces over at the juvenile detention center and at the state penitentiary, since both buildings were in close proximity to the landfill's location. Reports of flashing lights, intense bursts of fire and energy, and powerful vibrations felt in the air and seen in the skies over the landfill had to be investigated as quickly as possible, and if indeed meta-humans were involved, the SCU had already assigned one of their top officers to follow up and check things out: Cyra-2, the formidable lady cyborg officer and fierce combatant better known as Deuce. Fresh from her latest upgrades and rebuilds at HQ, she was itching for a scrap, and if presented with that opportunity, she would be happy to oblige any offenders.
Meanwhile, still standing near the center of the landfill, the person in question remained standing by himself, calmly and slowly pondering the significance of his victory over his now departed dark opponent. Deimos (Dominic Cruz) continued to look around the area where he was, never revealing that the constant turns of his head were not to really survey the dimensions of the landfill, but to calmly look at transparent glyphs that only his glowing eyes could see, and were creating in the air before him. Even since his abrupt arrival in Angel Falls, all of his formidable abilities pertaining to battle and travel were not truly impaired, but his personal memories of the circumstances that caused him to cross into this dimension remained blurry, as did the personal history of who and what he truly was. He could still see the faces of the powerful beings from beyond who had come forward to train him in warfare, like the Dragon-God Bahamut and the two Grigori, the fallen angels Azazel and Samyaza, and the bearers of great "gifts" for him (five Archangels, no less), but the true significance that was behind it all: it still remained elusive to him and his determined spirit.
'Well, I have reclaimed a sizable portion of my combat skills and training here, and so, I believe making use of what I gained from the cemetery earlier on should be my next task, now that I have dispensed with Naamah. Let us see if there is anything remaining here in the landfill to make use of and collect while I am here. After that, then I will make another attempt to reclaim who I am from my own mind.'
Kneeling down on his haunches, Deimos once more relaxed his mind and focused his mind on the fraternal twin gauntlets still on his forearms. As he calmed his spirit and looked inward for the information he sought, Deimos' powerful wings once more changed their appearance! The crimson red metallic wings once upon his back suddenly glowed, and then instantly transformed into his much more peaceful-looking silver and crimson red feathered wings, guarded by their golden gilded wing shields as the impressive wings flapped once while they stretched out and framed his body as energy began to dance and flow between his gauntlet-shod hands. Suddenly, the invisible glyphs dancing before Deimos' eyes became visible to the air, and more of them joined the ones there as he sought out any lingering pieces of the past here in the landfill.
Moments later, Deimos' eyes glowed bright blue in color, which in turn caused him to stretch out his left arm and focus his mind upon the gauntlet upon that limb. Instantly, a bolt of lightning snapped out from his hand and struck the ground a few feet from Deimos! The power behind the lightning bolt was quite intense, and the area where it had struck revealed the remnants of a large van-type vehicle! Then, pointing his right arm at the van buried beneath the landfill's contents, Deimos allowed his eyes to glow their burning gold once more, and those same eyes watched as the van was abruptly lifted right out of the ground by a powerful, invisible force! The van was soon set back down on the ground, but moments later, two more lightning bolts flashed out from Deimos' left hand, vaporizing another pair of locations and revealing long-buried vehicles! This time, one of the two vehicles was an old Hearse wagon, and the second one was a rusted out hulk that had possibly once been a Thunderbird. Seeing these old husks of the once-proud vehicles before him, Deimos reclaimed himself from his trance, stood up to his feet, and began to inspect the vehicles. His gauntlets shimmered and hummed to him as he inspected them in detail and looked them over for what he had found them for.
By the time the trio of squad cars had begun to pull into the landfill, Deimos had already found the remains of several human beings, and with careful precision, had used his obvious psychic ability to levitate them out of the vehicles and gently place them down on the ground. Taking great care not to disturb them any further, Deimos summoned up a series of solid stone plates from the ground! In these hollowed out plates, Deimos placed the remains of the deceased beings, while on the other hand, he carefully removed bag upon bag of rotted papers and what appeared to be decaying currency from the vehicles and placed them nearby. His ears perked up a moment later, hearing the approach of the police cars on the outskirts of the landfill and closing in quickly. Seeing that he needed to move quickly, Deimos pointed one hand at the bags, and said, "Return to that what you once were." Instantly, as if time was being pulled backward on the bags, the rotted papers and currency all seemed to be regenerating themselves back to their former states! A few moments later, the AFPD squad cars arrived near Deimos, but kept their distance as they surveyed the scene.
Deimos kept doing what he was doing despite the arrival of the AFPD, now restoring the last of the bags of important papers before him, while a shimmering clear ceramic covering appeared over each of the remains lying on the stone plates. All of the AFPD officers on scene saw the abundant energies dancing back and forth in the hands of this mysterious stranger, and were quick to radio back to HQ and confirm their need for Deuce to move in on the location and ascertain just who this guy was, and what he was up to i the midst of the landfill. Most of the AFPD were quite well aware now that any person able to make lightning itself dance in his hands was not someone that they could easily apprehend and hold by any normal means. Thankfully, Deuce had already been following her fellow law enforcement officers in her deployment van, staying only a few minutes back just to be safe. Now with the go-ahead coming over her internal radio, Deuce drove her van up behind the squad cars, loaded up on ammunition, checked her firearms to be sure they were locked and ready, and then headed out to have a conversation with this new person to Angel Falls.
Deimos had already finished stacking several of the bags containing the important papers onto a discarded table top when his otherworldly hearing picked up the near-silent whirring and humming of the cybernetic systems of Deuce as she approached him from about sixty five feet away. Of course, Deimos had yet to dispel his massive wings into his body once again, so that fact alone quickly gave him away as more than human. Deimos looked over his shoulder in her direction, but did not stop moving the bags of papers until they were piled in a straight line, while the bags of currency were placed in a similar fashion on an old car door. Standing up to his full height, Deimos then dusted off his gauntlets and clothing from the landfill's abundant dirt and grime, and then let his wings stretch out once more as he waited for the cybernetic officer to come close enough to speak to her plainly and without shouting.
Deuce found herself approaching the strange person in the landfill before her much slower than she normally would, given that she was having a difficult time believing what her enhanced optical sensors and scanning systems were telling her. All of the new and refined systems in her new body were top of the line, and every available sensory suite - targeting, zoom features, X-ray and other scanning abilities to say the least - were all telling her that the being before her should not even be there. Her focusing optics were blatantly stating to her cybernetic brain and its direct video feed back to HQ's tech department that it was not even detecting a normal molecular structure from the person standing not more than fifty feet before her. The wings, of course, were a dead giveaway that the male form before her was much more than what she could see with her scanning abilities, and Deuce cautiously popped open her integrated leg holsters, allowing one of her armored hands to tightly grip one of her custom made mega-high caliber pistols to assure her that she was ready to handle anything that this joker might try with her. As her left optical sensor whirred and moved with its scanning of the mysterious traveler one last time, Deuce made herself known to the male being standing before her, right as his wings stretched out and flapped once before folding up behind his shoulders.
"Hey, you with the wings! AFPD! Stay where you are!"
Deimos slowly turned to look over his shoulder at Deuce as she continued to calmly approach him, one hand on her weapon with the other pointing in his direction. The aetheric being could very easily sense that deep within her, a strong warrior spirit still resided, remaining with her mind and her very existence despite her mechanical transformation. Deimos respected such courage and strength of character very much in any being. Remaining in a calm and non-threatening stance, Deimos answered Deuce.
"As you wish, constable."
"Constable!? What are you, British!? I ain't no constable, ya winged weirdo! The name's Deuce, and I've got a boatload of whup-ass coming straight from the Angel Falls Special Crimes Unit if ya give me attitude like that again!"
"Well, then, my apologies, Officer Deuce. What seems to be the problem here?"
"Well, for starters, stranger, ya got energy dancing back and forth between ya fingers, and ya got wings! Angel Falls may be known for serious weirdness, what with metas and ugly scumbags galore, but we already got someone in town who just might be a real angel around here! Ruckus from another angel just ain't gonna sit right anytime soon! And, second, I do believe that you don't have permission to be all the way up in this here landfill!"
"Again, my apologies, Officer, but I thought this area was public property, and that access was permitted until later on in the evening."
"Okay, now I know ya gotta be British! Ain't no one around here that proper, and the signs are out front, ya mad hatter!"
Deimos narrowed his eyes as Deuce finished her statements, then took a deep breath and let his now-glowing eyes be seen from just underneath the hooded cloak covering his head and the dark lengths of his hair, which began to slowly flutter around his face.
"Now, Officer, I've been polite so far, but I will ask that you stop calling me by anything else but the name that I have chosen to carry while I am here in this city."
"Oh, really!? And, what name is that, big dog?"
The very moment he spoke his recently chosen alias to Deuce, Deimos spread his wings out to their full wingspan, lifted up his armored forearms, and simply let them "speak" to the officers and Deuce in their own way. Right before them, around Deimos' feet, the dirt and decayed remains of the landfill's contents were abruptly blown away from his personal space as powerful waves of pure power encircled his crimson metallic gauntlet, while burning waves of flame and crackling bolts of lightning danced up and down his left gauntlet. Deuce had both of her pistols drawn and at the ready, as did the AFPD officers nearby, but Deimos made no movements toward them at all as he focused his powers so that Deuce could clearly see that he had indeed been playing nice.
"I can do polite, and I can do hostile, Officer. So, do you want to keep talking in a civil manner, or do you want to, as they say, throw down?"
"Oh, I know you did not just talk smack to me! You try that one more time, and I'll pluck ya feathers and have your ass on my gran-mama's table for Thanksgiving dinner!"
"Fine, fair enough, Officer Deuce. But, kindly ask your questions by using my name, and I won't have to "show off" again."
"Okay, big boi! Message received! What are ya doing here?"
"Collecting spoils from the past. The criminals and vermin who passed through this region of your city in the past left a great deal of their dealings and their history behind them, and since I now know where they are, I am collecting them to make use of their significance as I see fit."
"So, you think ya can just tear up the landfill, cause a ruckus like what you were doing earlier, and not have to explain your actions to anybody!?"
"Those actions were the result of me fighting off a being who wished to change me into what they wanted of me, Officer. I assume you can understand that these wings on my back are not for show, correct?"
"Watch it, fly boy, or I'm gonna..."
Suddenly, a blood-curdling scream came from behind Deuce, and in the direction of her fellow officers! Her head snapped around to see what was the matter, and her optics automatically zoomed in to see several strange squat-legged creatures pulling themselves out of the ground! "What the hell!?" Deuce pointed her guns at the strange creatures, even as she ran toward the officer who had yelled out in pain as one of the creatures had bitten down on his leg with its wide maw of sharp teeth!
Deimos came soaring overhead Deuce a second later, his wings propelling him forward as he yelled out, "Carrion spawn! Quickly! Take out their heads or their chests before they get too close to you!" As Deimos landed on top of one of the police cruisers, his left hand snapped out, and a blazing elemental lance purely composed of flame appeared out of thin air! With one swipe of his flaming weapon, Deimos decapitated three spawn creatures that leaped at him! Then, he hurled the burning lance at the creature whose vicious jaws were still locked on the one officer's leg! The weapon struck the creature and incinerated it completely, but did not burn the officer in the slightest as it seemed to vanish from sight! Deuce came calling a second later, her twin handguns blazing away at the creatures that had begun to appear! The carrion spawn creatures suddenly found themselves with large holes in their chests or heads, and seemed to melt away into the ground from where they had come. The others that leapt at Deuce soon found that her strength was much greater than the other officers, as her armored feet crushed their legs and bodies underfoot long enough for her to blast more holes in them.
Deuce was soon covering her fellow AFPD officers as their own shotguns rang out in the firefight, knocking down carrion spawn left and right as they came at them, but for some reason, some of the ones which did not get hit directly as Deimos had yelled out for them to do, were getting back up and healing their wounds as they did! Seeing this, Deuce yelled out at Deimos, even as her hidden and powerful heat vision system blazed forth to catch another wave of the spawning creatures in mid-stride.
"All right, feather brain! Fess up! What the hell are these things!?"
"I told you! Carrion spawn! That being I fought before left a unique residue on the ground earlier, and that residue has the power to animate non-living matter into dark creatures that can murder humans in seconds! Now, less talking and more fighting, and use that heated energy from your eyes to burn the spawn away from us! That should keep them from regenerating while I tend to your wounded friend here!"
Deuce kept firing away with her handguns, while using her heat vision to burn away the spawn like she had been told and while she reloaded her guns as well. With one swift moment, Deimos reached over his shoulder, touched one of the shimmering gilded shields protecting his wings, and then touched the wounded officer! That mere touch instantly healed the officer's leg back to its original state! Nodding at the shocked officer, Deimos then turned around and let loose with a powerful wall of burning flames between him, Deuce, and the spawn!
"Well done, Deuce! Now, let's send them packing once and for all!"
"WE!? What you talkin' bout!? I'm licensed law enforcement, and you be a tourist with wings! Just how you think you can help us out!?"
"Simple, Officer! In this case, though, looks like I'll be doing things your way!"
"What do you mean, my way, D-man!?"
"With a serviceable handgun, my dear Deuce, but one of aetheric origins. Like this!"
A flash of energy blazed into being around Deimos' right hand, right as Deimos spoke. "AETHER CANNON!" The gauntlet immediately translated that flash of energy and the words Deimos spoke into a slim, but formidable handgun with a sharp bladed underside that appeared in Deimos' hand! The weapon seemed to growl in his hand, like his crimson gauntlet had done upon its first summoning, but Deimos simply moved like the well trained warrior he was, pointing the weapon at another wave of spawn coming forth, and pulled the trigger! A virtual firestorm of energy blazed forth from the handgun's barrel, and that energy blast totally enveloped the next few waves of carrion spawn!
Deuce's armored jaw dropped for a moment as she saw what Deimos' new weapon had just done to the attacking creatures, but her cybernetic reflexes brought her right back to the action as her own handguns took out a few stragglers, and her heat vision burned away their bodies away for good measure. She yelled at Deimos again even as he fired off smaller shots from the new firearm at the remaining monsters nearby them.
"Okay, hot shot! Ya got some skills, I'll give ya that, but your timing here sucks! I just got this new armor spit shined and polished a little while ago!"
"Again, my apologies, Officer Deuce, but I did not plan for these little annoyances to appear here so quickly!"
Deimos turned again to face the deadly minute vermin as his deadly firearm spewed powerful gouts of flaming bullets at the last of the creatures that were left around them, but this time, he flashed his hand before his face, once again summoning his battle mask. Deimos then caused another wave of flames to appear before him, Deuce, and the AF policemen, right before he yelled at them to cover their ears and hold on tight. Deuce fired off a few more shots of her own, and then joined her fellow officers behind their vehicles while her own auditory systems kicked in their safeguards. Not a microsecond later, Deimos' quasi-ultrasonic yell blasted out from his throat! As the windows of the squad cars shattered into pieces from the intense ultrasonic vibrations, the creatures were subjected to two excruciating attacks: intense burning flames, and the aetheric blast of the incredible voice of Deimos. A few minutes later, no more of the creatures could be seen or heard.
Deimos had already removed his battle mask as he strode forth to inspect the ground where the last of the dark creatures had fallen, leaving Deuce to wonder just who in the hell this guy was. It was only as she firmly holstered her smoking sidearms back into the integrated holsters in her armored legs when Deuce heard the clicking turn of the chamber from one of the officer's revolvers! She yelled out, "NO! HOLD YOUR FIRE!", but she turned a second too late as the bullet exited the weapon! Her enhanced sensors were already tracking the bullet's path as she tried to stop it from hitting Deimos, but her left ocular implant was quickly surprised as the bullet actually slowed down and stopped in mid-air as it traveled at Deimos! Deimos' head swiveled back around to look over his shoulder at the officer who had fired at him; it was the partner of the policeman whose leg he had healed at the beginning of the fire fight. The officer whom Deimos had healed after the creature's initial attack had quickly decked his partner and taken away his weapon, berating him for firing on someone who had just helped them fight off something vicious and extremely deadly, whatever it had been, and in no small terms had probably saved their lives with Deuce's imposing firepower and help.
Deuce chuckled to herself as she watched the six officers argue and debate what had just happened, but she quickly turned back around to see what had become of Deimos. She saw him still standing there, the bullet still in mid-air right before his chest. Deimos calmly plucked it right out of the air, looked at it once, and then handed it to Deuce without a single word before he walked back over to the three vehicles nearby. Looking them over, Deimos then turned to the bodies nearby, and motioned for Deuce to come over to where he was so that they could talk in private. Her sensors remained on the alert as she strode over to him.
"Well, then; Deimos, right?"
"Yes, Officer Deuce."
"That was impressive, hot shot. Never seen anybody do that many things so quickly, especially without being known as a meta. So, where are you from?"
"It would take too long to explain it, Officer, especially since some of those facts you would not believe, and some of the more important facts I can't recall right now. Suffice it to say, what I have done here is find several long-buried bodies of people whose importance is defined by those satchels of papers and documents. The currency is out of date, but once it is reviewed by a banking guild, I should be able..."
"Whoa! Hold your white horses there, D-man! If those corpses are people killed by mobsters or mobsters themselves, and that there is their money that they were killed with, that's evidence that needs processin'! You just can't walk off with it like a payment for a job well done!"
"I wasn't going to take it myself, Officer. I meant I was going to oversee its transfer into your vehicle, and into your perview. That rusted husk of a vehicle that I believe looks to be a Thunderbird of the mid 1960's is going to be my payment, as it were. I shall restore it to a state befitting me, with a few additions of my own, and that way, I can rest my wings. Flying too much will wear down one's perception and battle readiness, if you're not too careful about it."
"D-man, you sure seem to be crazy enough, but after that little tussle we just had, I'm thinkin' about going out on a limb. Tell you what: let me look over them three wheels there to see if there be any evidence left. I got recording equipment keeping track of things here, and if it's all good, I might just let you keep the T-bird."
"Let me, Officer Deuce? My, aren't you generous."
"Don't push it, wise-a**."
Deimos smiled at Deuce, nodding at her taunt, and then helped her carefully load the sealed bodies into a nearby metal container. With the bodies safe for the moment, Deimos then aided the officers in carefully storing the numerous satchels of information and currency into Deuce's van. Of course, Deimos did not say anything about what he knew still remained buried below the three cars. Three hours later, after Deuce and the officers had done all the forensic work they knew how to do, the main AFPD forensic teams began to arrive. By now, Deimos had indeed dispelled his wings from his back and moved the T-bird chassis clear of the area, leaving the old van and the Hearse to be looked over and examined. He simply remained leaning against the T-bird, his now gauntlet-free arms crossed over his chest, and the amazing firearm he had used in the fight now kept in a chest strapped holster as he waited to see what was going to happen from here. All the while, the shimmering golden eyes of Deimos were barely visible to the officers of the AFPD from beneath his hooded cloak.
Deuce kept her eyes and sensors on him as well, even as the tech department back at HQ tried to make sense of it all and what had happened. The enigma of the traveler standing against the rusted out husk of the T-bird kept them staring at their screens and their data streams, but only he truly knew what was occurring to him and around him, and he needed to keep it that way to avoid any further bloodshed, and make it back to his home dimension before anything more sinister came to light.
End of Chapter Seven