The Origin of The Atomic Sentry. (long 2 parts)




Please tell me what you think about this story I wrote for my main. Any compliments, constructive critiscism and such are welcome. Flames will be ignored

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It began with a spark, not an ordinary electrical spark, but a spark rather like a miniature version of the one that began the big bang, along with all the agony that might accompany such a blast. At least that’s how it felt to patient 37482, a blinding painful spark that seemed to wrench his consciousness from some, now barely remembered, blissful place. He wasn’t sure why he thought that, if he concentrated on it hard enough he would black out for a few minutes. It was more of a nagging sensation at the back of his mind that told him he didn’t belong here.

A faint sense of emptiness or isolation seemed to surround him. Faintly he heard voices speaking above the whisper of machinery and the steady beeping sound that kept pace with the dull throbbing in his head. He decided he was going to give the troll who had taken up residence in his head, and seemed to enjoy poking him with sharp pointy sticks, a stern lecture. He was only just beginning to feel his toes and fingers, so the thought of opening his eyes seemed like a task of monumental proportions. Patient 37482 decided it would be best to just lie quietly for a few moments.

“Did it work?” he heard one muffled female voice ask

“You can see the readouts as well as I can, what do you think?” came the equally muffled, and slightly sarcastic, reply.

“I can read those well enough you idiot, I mean is he alive? Is he functioning?” the woman, clearly exasperated, shot back.

“Not my job to figure that out” again the sarcastic male voice “all I do is provide the jumpstart, Clevenger’s team is the one that’s supposed to turn him into a viable product. For all I know he is listening to everything we say”

“Hmm…” the woman said, “I wonder if he will remember any of what happened to him, he is not one of those spandex clad freaks we are used to dealing with so maybe he will be more receptive to our procedures.”

“These readings are off the scale, I still at a loss to explain why he wasn’t flash fried when that Rikti soldier tossed him into the reactor” the man remarked

Consciousness faded from him once again, the welcome blackness rose up to embrace him. His next conscious thought was several hours later. He could tell he had been moved. He had regained all the feeling in his hands and feet and the Troll seemed to have gone on vacation, leaving his much smaller goblin friend to keep up the poking in his head.

Tentatively he opened one eye, then the other. The room he was in was lit with a dim light that provided just enough illumination to see by, but not enough to bring the troll back from the Bahamas. The room was devoid of all furniture other than the bed he lay on. It was clear from the vents in the wall and the various humming pieces of equipment around the room that it was some sort of isolation or life support chamber. He noted the “mirror” on the opposite wall. Plainly who ever his gracious host was had not seen enough movies with two-way mirrors in them to know what a cliché they had become, or didn’t care.

Along the far wall a door opened, he waited in anticipation to see who or what would come through. He was slightly thrown off guard when a Hazard Suit wearing figure stepped into the room and shut the door behind him. The individual took time checking the various monitors around the room before turning to face the man on the bed.

“Ah so you’re awake at last, even for someone ripped from the loving embrace of the sweat here-after, you took a long time waking up” the man said “We had our doubts if you would ever wake up. You’re our first attempt with someone of limited abilities”

Puzzled by the cryptic remarks, Patient 37482 stayed silent.

“Ah cat has your tongue I see. Not to worry we will have you back on your feet soon enough” the man remarked. “Right about now you’re wondering ‘Where am I?’ ‘How did I get here?’ well my friend I am going to shed the blessed light of knowledge on those questions for you. But first let’s get you into something a little more comfortable. I am sure you don’t want to be confined to this room for the rest of your life, after all.”

Into the room, through what he know recognized as an air lock, two large men, also clad in hazard suits, wheeled what at first appeared to be a large robot. Upon closer inspection it became clear that it was actually some kind or armor.

“You can call me Clevenger, and this, my glowing friend, is the prototype combination Battle Suit and Life Support system, code named SENTRY. The technical name is a load of mumbo jumbo I won’t bore you with the details.”

“The upside is you’re alive; the downside is you’re a walking radioactive core. So we have modified this suit to contain the radiation and keep those around you safe.”

The technicians began to take apart the SENTRY suit and fit pieces of it to Patient 37482, locking them into place.

“While they are doing that let bring you up to speed” Clevenger paused “For the sake of efficiency, I do so love things to be efficient around here, I will call you Sentry. Patient 37482 has such an impersonal feel to it, and I do so want us to be friends”

The man now named Sentry remained quite, this sudden assault of motion and sensory input so soon after regaining consciousness was a little overwhelming.

“About 3 weeks ago our beloved Paragon City was subjected to a ruthless and unprovoked attack by a hostile force from a parallel dimension.” “I know, I know that’s a lot for you to take in at one time. But the fact remains it happened.” He cleared his throat and continued, “We are not quite sure what happened to you but we have pieced together a theory.”

Clevenger checked a seal on the SENTRY suit and then continued

“During the height of the invasion one of the Crey private power plants was invaded, hostages where taken. Someone in the plant alerted Crey Security to the attack by triggering a silent alarm.” Another seal check and the faceless man continued “With the help of Hero Corps, we where able to re-secure the plant and drive the aliens out before they where able to trigger a meltdown in the reactors.”

Clevenger paused again as he adjusted another seal

“You where discovered inside one of the reactors, and for all intents and purposes you where dead. What kept you from taking the long dirt nap was the immense amounts of radiation your body had absorbed without being flash fried. Your ‘corpse’ was transported to this very facility where we employed a highly classified procedure to bring you back out of the light”

Sentry reeled, had he heard right? Had this man just admitted to, for all intents and purposes, resurrecting a dead man? Blackness threatened to envelope him again.

The man continued “Now I know that’s a lot to take in and I am probably the cruelest sort of man to hit you with that right off the bat. I do it because I want to make one thing clear. To the world you, my friend, are a dead man, and dead men have no rights.” Clevenger continued ominously “You are now property of Crey and we have big plans for you. No one will believe you if you try to tell them. Your friends and family have all grieved for you and I must say your funeral was very moving.”

Sentry stared, with the expression of a beached fish, at the man. Family? Friends? Why could he not remember any of this?

“As I said they all think you are dead, well technically you where but who is going to argue the details. Now of great benefit to us is your memory loss, so I can dispense with the usual threats to family, loved ones etc because you wont even remember who they are”

Clevenger took the helmet, the last piece, of the SENTRY suit and placed it on Sentry’s head, clamping down the seals and adjusting the vents.

“There, that’s all done. Your body absorbed so much radiation that you could not be allowed to leave this room without the SENTRY armor. You would kill everyone within a 100-yard radius. That is if your body didn’t just turn into a walking nuclear bomb, in that case the damage would be much worse. This means you’re confined to this armor. The bright side is that it allows you to channel that radiation into a variety of useful applications. Congratulations my friend, you have joined the vaunted ranks of Paragon’s Elite superheroes”

Chapter 2

Months passed, Sentry underwent strict training and testing. He was part of a team and had established himself as a leader among his peers. His team looked to him for direction during the tests and the various small missions they had been given. Sentry’s team had been code named The Atomic Defense Agency and had limited success with the press thanks to Crey’s PR machine.

Early one evening Clevenger summoned Sentry to his office for a mission briefing that he came to understand was his final test of his loyalty to his mentors.

“Good evening my friend, fantastic job on the mission today.” Clevenger patted him on the armored back. “I doubt Marrowsnap and his crew will be anxious to mess with our warehouses again soon”

Sentry remained standing, his hulking form dominating the room. His mentor mixed himself a drink and returned to his desk and slid a file across it towards the radiated guardian.

“The information in this dossier is of the utmost secrecy” Clevenger paused “It has come to our attention through our network or operatives that Paragon City is on the list of potential targets for that Saudi madman and his terrorists. After what happened in New York we can take no chances”

Sentry reached for the file and began to leaf through its pages.

“This home has been identified as a sleeper cell base. The people in this home are extremely dangerous and are not to be taken lightly”

Sentry’s visor scanned the file and incorporated the information into the databanks of the small computer housed in the helmet.

“He has managed to alter his agents, with help from a renegade 5th Column scientist, to pass for every day citizens of Paragon. It is our belief that he has abducted or killed the people who lived in this home and replaced them with his agents.” Clevenger paused to take a drink

“The plan is to drive a dirty bomb into the heart of Atlas Park, right into the parking lot f City Hall, and blow it up. They hope to kill as many young heroes as they can in the blast to make future attacks easier”

Sentry, suddenly alert, turned to leave immediately

“Wait my friend, before you run off, this is a delicate matter and I need you to handle the details personally. You can take the team of course but you must ensure that the cell is eliminated” the scientist looked expectantly at Sentry.

“I have been authorized by the Pentagon to authorize the use of lethal force if necessary. The young Heroes of Paragon must not fall. The city’s only hope lies on their shoulders. If you must, you are authorized to terminate the terrorists”

Sentry turned to leave and strode from the room. He left the facility and engaged his thrusters. Lifting off into the night sky he headed for the terrorist cell’s hideout. Upon arrival he set down quietly in the trees near the home and scanned the surroundings. His onboard computer searched for guards or other threats and found none.

Something was oddly familiar about this home but he could not put his finger on it. Leaving the cover of the trees he walked purposefully towards the home, arriving at the back door in a few short steps. Again he scanned the surroundings. Still no guards, this was starting to bother him.

He felt like he should know this place but could not remember why. Then he remembered his mission and all thoughts of familiarity were banished. He launched a bolt of pure radiation at the back door and watched as it exploded inwards for mere seconds before the fragments where vaporized in the heat. He released the safety seals on his armor and stepped into the home.

As he crossed into the dining room and was confronted by a pair of frightened teenagers and their seemingly equally frightened mother. The scientist had done good work. Sentry began to power up his suit. All it would take was the release of a full dose of his contained radiation; the resulting explosion would leave him unscathed but would obliterate the home and the terrorist.

Suddenly a roar erupted from behind him and he was hit by a force strong enough to knock him through the opposite wall of the home.

Dazed and confused he opened his eyes and looked up into the faces of his team. Thunderer then pinned him to the ground. The hulking behemoth’s weight alone was enough to keep him immobile.

“Sentry! What are you doing?” Watt Zephyr cried out

“I am carrying out my mission! You must not let the terrorists escape!!” Sentry cried out.

“Those are not terrorists” Surreal told him “Sentry you have been tricked.”

Watt grabbed hold of his friends arm and helped him up

“Clevenger has ordered you to eliminate your own family! These people here are your family. Surreal overheard him talking to someone on the phone shortly after you left.” Watt said “The plan was to make you kill your own family and then use that against you to insure your loyalty to the team”

Thunderer grunted his agreement

Sentry reeled and dropped to his knees. What had he almost just done? He had almost killed his own family. A family he could not even remember, but his none the less. He started to shake violently, then his shock was replaced by rage, rage against the man who had tried to betray him.

“We came as fast as we could, those people are evil Sentry, they are not our friends. They are using us. The team is not going back, you have to come with us Sentry and we need you with us” Surreal stated

Still shaking violently, Sentry allowed his friends to lead him back to the waiting van they had stolen from the facility when they made their escape.

“We will get him for this Sentry, I promise this will not go unpunished” Epsilon comforted the big man “but now is not the time. We need to find a place to hole up for a while”