Rise of the Phoenix: Part 1
Written by Rjjt456 :: [Saturday, 30 October 2021 12:46] Last updated by :: [Saturday, 27 November 2021 16:16]
Rise of the Phoenix: Part 1
Author’s note: I want to thank Au Goose for helping shape the story, and a massive thank you to Woodclaw for not only helping me make the story more interesting but sitting with me for hours to try and have this (shorther) version of the story ready on time!
On that note, the story will be presented in 2 parts, the second one coming some day in the future (hopefully a week or so), and later they will be compiled into a “Director’s cut” if I get around to it. Enjoy!
“All systems are green, and no significant delays in the internal circuits,” one of the technicians spoke up after he had gone over the work made on the new quantum computer earlier that day.
“So we are ready to start the test?” Greg asked, the scientist in charge of said test standing in an adjacent room with screens and multiple types of equipment to gather data.
The tech shrugged. “I see no reason why we shouldn’t be able to start. There are no problems or damages. Eric did well earlier.”
“Good enough for me then.” Greg replied as they walked through a hallway connected to the adjacent room. “At worst, a couple of wires may fry, and those can be sorted out tomorrow after we've gone home and got some sleep.” Greg yawned as they entered through the door to the scientists. While it couldn’t be seen deep down in the complex, it had become evening by now.
The room was filled with men and women in lab coats, or some kind of practical formal wear. Greg didn’t see why it was needed, but he honestly didn’t care, as long as they wouldn’t interfere too much in his work. He didn’t like being questioned about his profession.
“Are the project ready?” the lead scientist asked, his voice indicating he was as tired as everyone else, and perhaps just a bit impatient.
“Yeah, we are as ready as we believe we can be.”
“Good.” The scientist said as he turned himself towards a panel facing the computer. “Now let us see if we can access a parallel universe…”
The party was well on its way, the loud music making conversations impossible. As far as eyes could see, people were dressed in halloween costumes. Of course, the quality varied quite a lot, with some using cheap props and some paint to look like they had a costume, while others were wearing costumes that seemed tailormade to them, the textures, makeup, and props looking amazing. The type of costumes also varied. Some were classical monsters, others were heroes or villains, and yet again others were just dressed as slutty nurses.
Sarah herself was somewhere in the middle of this spectrum, her fiance, Eric, having spent a good amount of time and effort to find a special costume for her. He had brought it home earlier that day, and had been eager to show it, and she had to admit, she liked it very much.
Trying it on in their shared home, she had marvelled at the silky feeling of the fabric used, its red color complimenting her hair immensely. Her golden gloves had traced their way upwards from her long legs. The golden boots she was wearing reached all the way up to her thighs, and the golden sash around her waist complimented her very well, exaggerating her figure a bit, making her waist appear narrower than it was. In the middle of her chest rested a golden emblem of a bird spreading its wings.
“How is my The Dark Phoenix doing?” a voice asked from Sarah’s left, ripping her away from her daydreaming.
It was Eric walking over in a nice suit, a pipe in his breast pocket, and two drinks in his hands.
Sarah eagerly took the offered drink while she offered Eric a smile. “Quite good now that you’ve finally gotten us something to drink.”
“Hey, I couldn’t help that there were both zombies, sexy nurses, and sexy zombie nurses on my way over to the bar!” he retorted, both of them sharing a laugh over the absurd costumes some people liked to use.
Still laughing, Sarah noticed an upset looking woman leave the party. She didn’t get a good view of her before she was gone, but it was a dark outfit with a top and short skirt with silver trim on it. She also had a cape with the same trim and a “S'' on her back. Must be some kind of superhero Sarah thought as she and Eric finally stopped laughing.
“Well, my lady,” Eric nonchalantly said. “May I have this dance?”
Sarah smiled as she took the offered hand. “I thought you would never ask” she replied as they walked to the dance floor, their drinks soon forgotten
An hour or so went by this way, with Sarah and Eric having fun, dancing, and drinking while in the company of other people. At that point, Sarah needed to use the rest-room. It wasn’t an easy task due to her costume's form fitting design, but after having won her battle with the zipper, and accomplishing her goal, she stood in front of the rest-room mirror.
She really did look amazing, the costume really made her look amazing. Letting a gloved hand run through her hair, a thought made its way to her mind. “I really do look like The Dark Phoenix, don’t I?”, she said out into the empty rest-room before turning away from her reflection so she could go back to the party.
Not much had changed while she was away, people were still having fun, and the music was definitely still too loud. She inwardly shrugged as she tried looking for Eric.
At that point though, something happened. It almost looked like a technical effect, some kind of barrier of light running its way through the room, but with one major difference: Everyone hit by this light seemed to almost collapse when hit by it. Sarah only had time to find it concerning moments before it hit her.
Sarah didn’t notice it, but as people began to scream around her, she could feel a mounting pressure in her head. She dropped to her knees as the pain began to intensify. She almost thought she would die then and there before a sudden warmth seemed to spread through her body. In a matter of moments, she could feel how the warmth had reached all corners of her body, and like that, the pain went away.
Gasping for her, she let her eyes fall down onto the floor. Except, she couldn’t see it for her outstretched part of her costume around her chest. The fuck? she thought to herself as she ignored everything about her. Feeling around herself, she experienced how her hands found a narrower waist, a filled out butt, and breasts befitting a model. Not only that, her costume had seemed to change as well, the textures seeming of even higher quality than before. As she stood up, she also felt how her boots had gotten high heels. “How can this be?”
She was ripped out of her thoughts when she felt something that made her turn her head.
Looking around, she could see how several of the other party goers had changed as well, though not everyone could be said to have changed for the better. Multiple people’s skin was turning either green and grey before their bodies took on a stench of rot. Their moaning was loud, leaving little question in Sarah’s mind what was going on.
“ZOMBIES!” Someone in the crowd shouted before blasting said zombie with a ray from their hands. Everyone around that person was dumbfounded.
Sarah didn’t know how to react for a moment before something began to charge at her. Reacting instinctively, she reached out with a hand and threw a glass bottle at her assailant. Only, it wasn’t with her hand. As the bottle connected, she grasped it. She had thrown something with her mind.
She began to run away from whatever had charged at her. She needed to find Eric, and fast.
She dodged between several people, many having managed to get powers of some kind. It was total chaos though. People dressed as heroes and villains alike were duking it out, destroying furniture and walls left and right. While all this was going on, Sarah was desperately running around trying to find Eric while also staying alive.
Almost giving up hope, she desperately pleaded with her own mind that she would find Eric. As she was about to run away from the club, she felt something, a tingling in her mind. She couldn’t tell for sure, but she felt certain that it had to be Eric.
Rounding another corner in a near sprint, she bashed a door in to find Eric surrounded by several men holding Tommy-guns, all of them pointing towards Eric.
“I don’t know what you mean! I’m not who you are looking for!” Eric replied, his voice telegraphing to the whole world that he was nervous about the situation.
“Nah man, gotta be you. I made a deal with someone looking just like you, and I want what I payed for.” The man said as he took out a large knife from a pocket. “You wouldn’t want to call me a liar, would you now?”
Eric was the most scared that he had ever been in his life. He hoped someone could help him now…
“Hey, leave my man alone!” Sarah shouted into the room.
One of the goons turned around moments before a nearby table connected with his face, sending him flying across the room.
His partner hadden been hit by debris yet, and aimed his gun towards Sarah, unleashing a hail of bullets towards her.
Sarah covered herself in arms, thinking she had made the worst decision of her life as the bullets were flying towards. When the firing stopped, she slowly opened her eyes to see the bullets all floating in front of her, all of them stopped in their way a couple of feets away from her.
Despite feeling dumbfounded, Sarah quickly took the initiative again, mentally grabbing the gun in the goon’s hands and smacking him with it, leaving only the boss alone.
While the fight had been going on, the boss had taken Eric and was holding the knife to his throat.
“What the hell are lady!?” The man said, panic writing itself plain on his face.
As she was about to step closer, the man yelled up again, putting the knife closer to Eric’s throat. “You stay right there lady, or else your friend here will lose his head.
Sarah stopped in her place. She couldn’t let him do that, but there was no way in hell she would let him leave with him either. Inside of her, she could feel a fury build up. Like the flames of a fire building up strength. While she couldn’t see it herself, the man and Eric could see how Sarah’s form seemed to smoder a bit, her eyes getting an orange tint to them.
“You wouldn’t dare…” she growled.
Whether it was from fear or stupidity, the man relaxed his knife. Taking the initiative, Eric stepped on the man’s foot before delivering an elbow to his chest, following up with taking control of the man’s knife wielding arm, wrestling it out of his grasp.
As soon as Eric was clear of the man, Sarah acted on pure instinct: She grabbed the man with her mind and threw him hard enough to go through a wall.
They stood like that in silence for a couple of seconds before Sarah ran over to Eric and gave him a passionate kiss. “What in the world happened?” They both exclaimed at the same time.
“People are turning into their costumes!?” Sarah said, her eyes still having a bit of that orange in them. “How did you get here?”
“I don’t know. One moment I was chatting with someone, the next I was being held at gunpoint by those guys.”
Sarah nodded, but honestly didn’t care.
“Eric, we are getting out of here. Now!” she yelled as she pushed a wall with her mind, clearing a hole more than large enough for them to get out of. grabbing hold of Eric, she tried something. Something that just felt right. Focusing her mind on them, she took hold and lifted them like she had done with the different objects she had thrown in the last minutes. Feeling a small strain on her brain, she levitated both of them out of the hole and out into the city, leaving the chaos behind them.
“Holy shit Sarah! We are flying! How are you doing all of these things?!” Eric marvelled as they floated further away until they reached an empty park.
“I… I don’t know? It just comes so naturally to me…” She took a moment to look at her gloved hands. “Like I’ve done it several times before, and yet feel like it’s my first time doing it.”
Silence reigned between them for a moment before Sarah punctuated it with her giggling. “Eric, we are in the middle of the most chaotic evening of our lives, and you are just standing there and…” she blushed at the end of the sentence, her mind picking up on Eric’s thoughts about her “improved” body.
Wait, she had heard his thoughts?
Out of nowhere a huge sound from an impact rang out in the streets. Before he could even react properly, Sarah had already embraced him, her eyes beginning to glow again with that orange color as flames began to surround them.
“Whoaw, easy Sarah. Calm down!” Eric said as the flames around them seemed to intensify.
Slowly they began to flicker out as the glow disappeared from her eyes. “Sorry, I didn’t know what I was…” she mumbled as her hands drifted to her head, the pressure from earlier having returned to a low degree.
“It’s okay Sarah,” Eric calmly said as his phone vibrated. He had received a text from his supervisor at the facility.
To all personnel: STAY AWAY FROM THE FACILITY UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.
Our security has been compromised, and the project has proven itself to be wildly unstable. Until we have it under control, STAY AWAY.
We are also receiving news about attacks by some kind of super-terrorist…
Eric looked away from his phone and noticed Sarah’s face being twisted into one of worry. “Do You think it could be one of our fellow partygoers?” Sarah said in a hushed tone. “Like, what if I was not the only superpowered individual that has come to life this evening?”
Eric didn’t know what to answer. “Did you just read my mind?”
Sarah simply nodded.
Eric sighed as he began thinking. Could it really be? An hour ago he would say it was impossible for someone to gain superpowers, but now? It could very well be soo.
Still thinking about what to do, Sarah began to stand straighter, her posture changing into a superhero pose, and her eyes settled.
“Sarah,” Eric said. “I know that look of yours, and I’m not sure I approve of it.”
Sarah rolled her eyes. “I know you don’t, but who else can help them? If they are being attacked by some superpowered individual then they might just need another one to help them, right?”
Please say yes Sarah projected in her mind. She would go even if Eric said no, but she really wanted him onboard with this. The rush of power she had felt when she saved him? It felt incredible.
Eric looked like one that was about to settle into an argument but his demeanor then began to slowly change. “I’m not going to enjoy this, but sure.”
Sarah floated into the air as she celebrated her victory, giggling at the thought of being able to be a superhero.
“…But I’m going with you! You don’t know your way around the place!” Eric added as Sarah firmly hugged him before taking to the skies in the direction of the facility. “I’m fine with that Eric. Let's be superheroes!”
Inside the facility
“Oh Greg” a seductive voice called through the halls. “Where are you?” she continued as she floated down the hallways, her eyes and ears scanning each room and corner for her target.
“I want to thank you for all the compliments you’ve given me in the last few years…” A loud screech sounded as she twisted a large security door into scrap before tossing it behind her.
Hidden in a lead covered room, Greg was holding his breath as he hoped to the gods above that the woman looking for him wouldn’t succeed. He didn’t even know who she was…
Sarah felt amazing as she soared through the sky with Eric in her arms. The wind in her long red hair, and his closeness to her was exhilarating! The pressure she had felt earlier also seemed to fade as they got closer to the building.
In a matter of minutes they had covered a few city blocks and reached the city’s university building. “It doesn't look like much to be honest” Sarah mumbled as they got closer to the building.
“It’s because most of the classified stuff happens in the basement. Far from where most people would ever go.”
Sarah simply nodded, feeling no need to comment on the logic of that. As they got closer, Sarah and Eric quickly spotted a large hole on the site of the building near ground level.
“I’ll hazard a guess that she went down that way.” Eric commented as Sarah floated them through it.
As they got further down in the building, Sarah began to feel… odd. Nothing was wrong with her, but more like… She was getting stronger? Eric was certainly much easier to fly with at this point.
They went through several corridors, some of them had been mangled by something…All the while they hadn’t seen or heard anyone, a little silent alarm active, casting its red light around. They had both been commenting on how they hadn't seen anyone, with Eric thinking that an evacuation must have taken place.
Going to a stop in the large room they were in, Sarah turned to her Fiance.
“I…” Sarah wasn’t sure how to describe it. “I think my powers are becoming more powerful. More intense.”
“What do you mean?” Eric asked her.
“I mean, as we’ve gotten closer to wherever this project is… It feels like I’m capable of more. Like my powers are enabling me to do more things.”
In a demonstration of what she meant, she waved her hand to one side and several massive objects began to orbit around her.
“Earlier this evening, I had some trouble lifting stuff. Now?” Her eyes glowed as she crumbled a bunch of machinery into small spheres of dense metal.
Eric was stunned. His fiance was clearly becoming more powerful as they got further into the building.
“How… How are you feeling?” He asked as he noticed Sarah gazing out into the room, her eyes seeming unfocused.
“I don’t know. Powerful, I guess?” she replied as she let the metal spheres fall down into the floor. “Do you think it's that project of yours that is causing it?”
Eric shakecked his head. “Maybe? It won’t be the wildest thing to come out of this night at this point.”
Sarah nodded as they continued.
Finally they reached a basement that hadn’t been torn apart by the angry superwoman they had heard about.
Punching his credentials into the terminal opened the doors and led them into the adjacent observation room to the project. Through the glass he could see how the quantum computer was still in place, but… different.
Various parts seemed to fluctuate out of existence every second or two, some reappearing shortly after while others never appeared again. Eric had never seen anything like this before, he could hardly comprehend what was going on.
“Eric…” Sarah said from behind him, clutching her head, her expression being one of pain and distress.
“I… I can hear people’s thoughts Eric. Not just yours but everyone’s. All these thoughts seem within reach” she said as her hand made a motion similar to one graping something out of the air, her expression still tense for the stress her mind had come under.
Eric walked over and embraced her tightly, trying to come up with an idea to help her. Something she could focus on perhaps.
“Use me. Focus on my thoughts!” Eric said as he made her look in his eyes. God, I hope this works he prayed as Sarah nodded and looked to be concentrating.
As he looked into her eyes, he saw she slowly began to relax in his arms, the tension in her body disappearing as her center of focus moved itself. Forcing himself to focus on her, he quickly noticed how her eyes had changed. Sarah’s eyes had always been as blue as the sky but in that moment they had changed into that orange glow, its intensity stronger than previously.
As he gazed into them, he felt like he couldn’t turn away from them, the orange in her eyes seeming to flicker like flames from a bonfire. In those flames he saw shapes and sounds of things long past. A young boy riding on his bike with help from his grandpa with the sun shining brightly over them. WAFFLES. A nervous wreck of a teenager asking out a young girl with red hair to a dance at their school’s prom. SPINACH COMMERCIAL. An older guy falling to his knees with a diamond ring in his hands. A familiar blueprint for a computer… 128 gigabyte of main RAM in quantum spliced banks…
“I got it” Sarah whispered, shaking Eric out of his trance.
“Sorry, what?” Eric mumbled as he tried to shake himself into focus once more.
“I got it! I know what is going on!” Sarah pointed towards the computer. “That thing there… is the reason why everything is like it is right now. You know how they wanted to prove parallel universes?”
Eric nodded in response.
“So, they built this computer to be able to simulate, and connect different universes to each other, but I’m pretty sure that a failure occurred which has led to the computer layering several different universes upon each other.” Sarah continued, her tempo going up as she also became more sure of herself. Her eyes had continued to glow.
“Wait, what does that have to do with you having powers?” Eric interjected.
Sarah rolled her eyes. “Because in another universe I have these powers. I’m not just dressed up, I’m actually the Dark Phoenix! Or at least similar enough to her…” Sarah replied as she posed for them, showing how she was practically the spitting image of the character at this point.
Eric nodded along. While physics wasn’t his specialty, he had heard the different professors talking enough about it that he thought he could follow along on Sarah’s explanation. “But how can it then be that your powers are intensifying here?”
Sarah seemed to concentrate for a moment before she answered. “The computer is the epicenter, it’s generating a field where the different new laws of reality are mixing and changing. The closer to the source, the more stable the ‘new’ laws are while the old ones still hold up the further away we go from here. That’s why my powers were weaker back at the party.”
It was at that moment that Sarah’s eyes widened up. “It’s expanding.”
“The field?” Eric responded.
“Yes, that’s why we got hit in the first place! Why everyone at the party just suddenly changed: The field had expanded wide enough to encompass us all!”
Sarah stood up and aimed her gaze right at the computer, razing her arm as she did so. “We need to stop it. It’s too dangerous to keep running.” she said as the computer began to levitate upon its spot inside the room.
Acting on adrenaline, Eric placed himself between the machine and Sarah.
“Sarah, stop! We don’t know what could happen if you just casually destroy it!” Eric shouted. She lifted her eyebrow questingly at that. “As far as we know, this computer is the only thing holding our reality together as we know it. You said it yourself: Several realities are being run right now?”
“Yes… ” Sarah sighed, gently putting the machine down. “I might have stolen my knowledge of the whole operation, but I think I can see how this works.” Her eyes went out of focus and flared orange with the light of distant stars. Her mind streaked halfway across the world, looking, searching, sniffing like an invisible bloodhound.
“Oh my god” she whispered.
“What?” asked Eric, feeling a cold shiver down his spine.
“I don’t think anyone has ever foreseen what is happening here. I just touched the minds of twelve of the biggest experts of quantum computing in the world and even putting their brains on parallel processing won’t do.”
“You just what!?”
“Hush!” she commanded with a gesture of her golden glove, her eyes glowing more intensely. “As I was saying, what is happening here is a wave-particle paradox applied on a global scale. Everything within the field behaves like a probability wave, it exists under both our laws of physics and under those of other universes. Only by coming into contact with a strong enough… symbol of one of our possible identities we coalesce into a particle, in a singular defined identity.”
Eric gulped down hard. “So in another universe…”
“No Eric, right now, in any possible universe I… am… the… DARK… PHOENIX!” Sarah shouted while her hair fired up in a column of actual flames, her feet leaving the ground that she had been standing upon. Her eyes had become orbs of orange light, their glow more like the sun than a star. Stretching her arms out, wings of flames shuddered into existence, surrounding her in their fiery embrace.
Eric’s entire body shook and he tried to refocus on the task at hand: how were they going to shut down the computer safely?
“What was that?!?” Eric shouted.
“It’s her.” Sarah said firmly, her now orange eyes having locked in on something on the opposite end of the complex. “I can feel her. I can sense her mind.”
Sarah nodded. “She seems to have found her prey… And she is in the mood to toy with him.”
Before Eric could do or say anything, Sarah had lifted him back on his feet with a gesture and given him a deep kiss. “You try and fix this…” she said before she was surrounded by flames, disappearing in the process. “… I’m going to handle her in the meanwhile.” her voice rang through Eric’s mind.
The metal groaned as it parted, the light from the hall illuminated her figure as she stood face to face with her prey.
“Hiding away Greg? I thought you loved attention,” she purred as she lifted him up by his collar, her eyes changing from their ocean blue to red in seconds. “… Especially from women” she snarled as she was about to unleash fiery hell on the man.
“You will do no such thing!” a female voice rang through her mind.
“Who are you?! Show yourself!” She shouted out into the room, her voice making glass shatter, and walls crumble.
“I am fire…” the voice replied as a column of fire appeared out of nowhere in the room.
“I am life incarnate…”, the voice continued, slipping out of her mind and into the room as a beautiful female form began to appear.
“I. am. THE DARK PHOENIX!” Sarah shouted as her form burst into form, flames licking up her body and spreading out into the room. “And I’m here to stop your terror.”
The Superwoman looked at Greg for a second before she threw him away. If this bitch wanted to play, then she would give it to her…
To be continued in part 2!