Well everyone I listened to the Season One of TSCC soundtrack today while writing this one and I think that it may have made its way through into the writing a bit. If you can (parts are on youtube) I'd recommend reading this section with Sarah Connor's Theme, Perfect Creatures, Catherine Weaver, Derek's Mission, and There's a Storm Coming playing at least once during your reading. Those really helped influence this section.
Surprisingly these songs are available on YouTube (links will not be provided)
Without further delay:
It man had been meant to fly God would have given him wings, or maybe rotors as in this case. When he was a young man Earl Wise and his family had taken a cross country flight because of his father’s job. They were going from their home in Death Valley to make a presentation at New York University. When the flight started Earl was excited and wasn’t afraid at all – the Batman flew all the time after all. Though that was fiction and Wise understood that. If you dressed up like a flying bat in the real world you were going to go to a psychiatric hospital and not much else. The attendants were kind and brought him what he wanted. It wasn’t until about midway when the plane started to really shake that he started to become afraid. When he saw the fear in his mother’s eyes it became palpable. Ever since then flight was something far from his interests of ever doing again.
Now here he sat on a rickety old helicopter flying to God knows where. At least Major Young was here but he wondered where the others could have been. Allison Young and her team may not have been working with him for very long, but Wise had the distinct impression that not many things were attempted by this squad without each of those women at each other’s backs. Allison had told him when they were brought together on the Enterprise’s flight deck that they were the only two who weren’t diagnosed as positive for radiation poisoning and required the further service of Doctor Fischer’s team. Earl liked Fischer but there was something like him that was just a bit off.
Just like Major Young.
Resistance Private Wise didn’t know Allison well and he wouldn’t pretend to, but there was just something about her that was different. Allison wasn’t outgoing, but she was no damned bashful introvert either. Their entire flight the Major had just sat their like a statue staring forward. There was the occasional blink every few seconds that broke her stone like fašade, though they were few and far between. While they were on the op that got them into this mess she cracked an infrequent joke or even pretended that she was happy to be there. Not like this though. This wasn’t that same person. What the hell happened to her when she was trapped inside those four walls of Doctor Fischer and his medical staff?
Then again not everyone was meant to be locked behind four walls. Earl Wise was one of them, though he apparently wasn’t as bad as the Major. At least he could still crack a smile instead of stare at the world with cold eyes. Their pilot was a bit more jovial but he was pretty much the same. Was this a penalty of agreeing to live in Eden? Stoicism? If that were the case then Earl would prefer to eat an apple or two.
“How much longer until we arrive?” He called up from his seat to their pilot.
The pilot turned his head away from the windscreen, “Not too much longer. A couple of minutes. You okay back there?”
“Everything’s carrots and apples,” answered Allison before Earl could get a word in edgewise. “Alert us when our landing zone is within visual range.”
Earl adjusted the M16 Rifle that the Major had supplied him with and analyzed it. The run of the mill assault rifle before J-Day, the M16A1 wasn’t exactly as effective as a plasma rifle but it was good enough to cause a distraction or two against an endo. The burst fire came in handy in some fights, but not all of them. The bullets that it carried were supposedly some new R&D design that helped to take down machines though with only a couple of hits so it was a good improvement. Allison noted him looking at the weapon, but she didn’t say a word. She just kept watching him like a teacher proctoring a troublesome student.
“Am I bothering you?” He asked as he set aside the weapon. As the Private set it down he made sure that the safety was still in place.
The woman glanced down at the rifle and then back to him. “You are not bothering me.”
The Resistance Private smiled, “Could have fooled me. You’ve barely said three words to me this entire trip of ours.”
“My answer to your question contained five,” the woman pointed out, “two in excess of your comment.”
“I thought maybe we could talk or something,” Wise admitted as he sat there. “You know sometimes its fun to learn about people during long trips. I hate awkward silences. Don’t you?”
The Major looked down for a fraction of a second then looked back up at his face. “I was unaware that the silence was awkward. Did you find it to be awkward?”
“I wouldn’t have said anything if I hadn’t! You’re worse than talking to Fischer.”
“Why thank you, Private,” Allison looked out the window at the dead city below and the wasted skyline. “I had hoped never to see this place again. I had believed we would be killed during our mission to find the supply convoy.”
Wise lifted an eyebrow, “There’s still time. I don’t think that mission’s over since we’re on another one very similar to it. Don’t you think? What he hell are we up to anyway? You didn’t give me much of a briefing when we left on this little family outing.”
“We received a distress call from Kansas Bunker. Doctor Fischer’s Commander, Captain Stone, informed me of it and I decided that it would be prudent for us to attempt to return home to assist. The Captain was very gracious and allowed us access to this vehicle and one of their pilots.” An explosion could be spotted in the far distance out the window. “I tried to get permission for the entire team to accompany us; nevertheless, Doctor Fischer said he could not release them in good conscience in their present state. They were going to be treated for severe radiation poisoning when we left.”
“So you and me against the world then?” Earl had noted the fireball ahead. “Isn’t that how it always seems to go for us? Though I wouldn’t want anyone else at my six than you, Major.”
His Commanding Officer looked out the window and down as they passed over Griffith Park, “You know when I was a child I had a birthday at that park. Back before all of this happened that is. A boy passed by my father and me riding on a mountain bike. I told my father that was what I wanted and he told me that I’d have to wait until next year. I never did get the mountain bike.”
Wise was saddened by what he heard, “I’m sorry, Major, but I know how you feel. Were you and your family close?”
“Aren’t all families?” Asked the woman as they passed over the park. “Surely you and your family were close.
“Not always,” answered Earl. He took a bottle of water from one of the emergency kits and took a quick swig of it wishing it were something a bit stronger. “I remember Judgment Day as being hell on Earth because of that very reason.”