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Tyne looked out over the massive amount of kids gathering into two different groups in the Tech. Construction Area. Everyone was getting ready to either head back to CIC at the Clan Compound or head to South Carolina to the AI division of the Clan.
"Hmmm...." Tyne said softly to himself. "Should I stay here or go with one of them?" Tyne watched as Nyo and Stepan, complete with overnight bags, joined the CIC group. Dmitry and Dominic, on the other hand, were standing over with the South Carolina group talking to Josiah and Gavin. "Maybe I should stay here; I mean there's no sense in me going anywhere that I might not be needed."
Cory heard Tyne's mutterings. "Nice try bro; you're needed if you realize it or not." he whispered as he put an arm over Tyne's shoulder. "Even if you don't count the fact Kyle needs someone around who understands what he's going through, I still need you to help me cope with how crazy everything has gotten."
"From what I've seen Cory, crazy kind of defines this entire group; you're just one of the head nuts," grinned Tyne. "I guess I can go with you guys but I haven't even packed."
< Like that is ever a problem with me around. >
"Yeah," added Rusty has he came over to Tyne carrying a bag like Nyo and Stepan's. "Besides, I already decided that we're going. Ark agreed that you need a little sun and maybe rest, she even helped me pack anything you would need."
< She? And I thought we were on the same page with everything, now you are trying to give me a gender. Again. >
Tyne grinned and pulled Rusty into a hug, "I knew you were good for me."
Cory giggled. "Ark; you're too nice to be called an 'it'; that's why the guys keep giving you a gender. Just roll with it; as long as they don't start comparing you to animals you're fine!"
< Well that is just a fantastic idea Cory. But you know what? You are too nice I think to be a boy so let us say that you are a girl instead. Yes I think we can call you Carla instead of Cory. What do you think? >
"Ark, be nice," said Tyne.
< Did you not hear him though, I am nice. >
"Usually!" Cory groaned. "Geeze, try to compliment IT and IT gets IT'S skirts all in a bunch!"
< So now I am an 'IT' that wears skirts? >
"I think Ark is upset because it's losing its technicians for a little while," said Tyne. "Don't take it personally."
< How long will you be gone? >
"A little while," said Rusty. "A few days maybe."
< Days? Great. >
"Use the Techbots that we gave you," suggested Tyne.
< I have not used the Techbots since I created Nyo. Why would I want to start using them now? >
"Ark, the world won't end if you don't have us around to help you for just a few days," said Tyne. "You'll live."
"We'll make sure of it." Cory added. "It really would bite going through all this crap to have the world end; I'm kinda attached to living."
< Leave already, before I decide that you should take a trip to the surface for a few minutes first. >
"Right, lets get moving then," Tyne said quickly as he took a few steps forward. "Everyone, can I have your attention please!"
"What's that Tyne I can't here you over the sound of how awesome we are!" Dmitry shouted back.
Tyne shook his head and then whistled, this time getting everyone's attention, "There, much better. Okay, before half of us go one way and the other half go the other I wanted to say that it has been an honor to meet all of you and I look forward to working with all of you in the future. Now, we leave in thirty seconds so finish up whatever you're doing and standby!"
"Awww mannnnnnn ... Jamie got to swallow Beau's tongue and I didn't!" Jacob yelled across the room.
"Twenty-five seconds," Tyne called back. "An expert can get plenty of tongue in that amount of time, get to it."
"Ewwwwww!" Timmy, Ricky, Matty, and Paul chorused as all the couples dived for their partners.
< Where in South Carolina shall I put you? I know the other group needs to go into a dark part of CIC, and I have a room in mind. But to what location do you want me to place the rest of you? >
"Umm...I don't know," said Tyne as he looked at Cory. "I've never been there before."
"Marc's living room." Cory giggled. "I think that might get their attention."
< Very good, living room it is. Standby. >
"Wait a minute, who is staying behind?" Tyne asked.
< Ethan and Aidan will keep an eye on everything. Have fun. > Ark said as everyone suddenly vanished, leaving the room once again void of life.
"SURPRISE!" Cory yelled as the group appeared in the living room at the AI Compound.
"OMIGOD!" Noah said as he fumbled to catch the glass he was holding unsuccessfully, watching it shatter on the floor.
"Good god guys!" Marc said grasping at his chest. "How the hell did you do that?"
"We're gooooood!" Cory giggled as he polished his fingernails on his shirt.
"Good, you can help me clean up this mess then, dork!" Noah said with a laugh.
"I'll help you." Caleb said with a smile as he rushed over and hugged Noah tightly. "Did ya miss me?"
"Bigtime!" Noah said, resting his forehead on Caleb's shoulder releasing a sigh of relief.
"Broken glass!" Josiah said excitedly with a grin. Josiah tilted his head and giggled as the shards of glass quickly pulled back together to form a glass figurine that resembled a cat. "Okay well that's not what I was going for but it's not broken anymore."
Gavin smiled as he wrapped his arms around Josiah. "That's okay cutie; I think it's awesome, just like you."
"You want some more soda dude?" Danny said with a laugh as he grabbed the bottle off of the coffee table and motioning as if he was going to pour it on the cat.
"No thanks." Noah answered before looking back up in astonishment. "How the...?" He got out, tilting his head.
"Zero-point energy," said Josiah. "It's a giving and taking of energy kinda thing, but it lets me move, remake, blow up, reduce, and control just about anything. I kinda meant to put the glass back together but I wasn't paying enough attention to what it should be. It turned out to be what I was thinking instead, a cat."
Dmitry giggled, "Do you think about cats often?"
"No," replied Josiah. "I spend most of my time thinking about Gavin now. Before that I use to think about cats often, they're kinda cute."
"I guess that answers your question." Marc said with a giggle. "Looks like you guys had an interesting trip." He continued, turning toward Sean.
Sean nodded. "You might say that; when you hear about all of it you're gonna freak."
Just then, Joey came running into the room, followed by an out of breath KC. "Get back here Creep!" KC shouted before both came to a screeching halt in the living room.
"You'we Home!" Joey shouted at the top of his lungs before rushing to the nearest person and tackling them, nearly knocking Cory over.
After seeing the shocked expressions, Marc laughed and elbowed Noah in the side. "Looks like we have some competition on who had the most interesting couple of days."
"JOEY!!!!!!!" Timmy screamed as he pounced on top of Joey and Cory.
"Dimmy!" Joey squealed as he turned and hugged his brother tightly. "Dimmy! Wooked, I god a new body an Ausdin gave me fawds wike unka Cowy!"
"Awesome!" Timmy giggled. "You can make sure Unka Mark don' forget Daddy then! C'mon; we gotta new little brother; you gotta meet him!"
"Coow!" Joey replied before looking around the room.
"Looks like we're gonna have to take turns with intros." Marc said with a smile. "You wanna go first Cor?"
Cory shook his head. "You first; my list is longer than a line at Disney."
"Ok." Marc said before whispering something in Joey's ear.
"Oday unka Mawk." Joey replied in excitement before he ran through the kitchen at top speed and out the front door.
"Well, That was obviously Joey. I'm sure you can guess he's doin better than ever in a REAL body." He got out as everyone giggled and nodded in agreement. "This guy over here is KC McKensie." Marc said as KC blushed a bit and waved. "KC was lost in an accident a few years back. We now have a new friend on the police force out in California because of him." Marc said with a grin. "I guess you could say KC is Austin's older brother. He was my first attempt to make us more human, but they canceled that project."
"Nice to meet you guys!" KC finally managed to get out before Joey came running back into the room with Austin in tow.
"I think you may remember this guy." Marc said toward Sean and Cory.
"Austin?" Cory managed to say before Austin found himself bowled over by Timmy. "Dude; you look awesome!" Cory added as he helped Austin back up.
Austin smiled as he pulled Cory into a hug. "Thanks Dad. Did my little brother miss me?"
As he returned the hug, Cory replied. "You better believe it. I think he was just as worried about you as he was Joey."
"This is Timmy?" KC asked when Joey slammed back into his side. "Joey's told me all about you little guy."
"Casey, dad boy has puwpwe eyes." Joey said with a shy grin.
"And no one usually notices. My name is Tyne," grinned Tyne. "I have purple eye because I'm a little different then everyone else, I'm a Founder. I'm probably the only purple eyed Founder you'll ever meet anymore, if you ever run across another Founder at all. You've got some pretty cool looking eyes too though."
Joey finally stepped out from behind KC and smiled. "You wike my eyes?" He asked, his smile growing wider. "My daddy says dhey awe coow." He added before stepping closer to Tyne and tilting his head. "Whad's a foundew?"
"Well Founders are a lot like humans in most ways only we're able to do a lot more with our minds," Tyne replied slowly trying to make sure he used words Joey would understand. "The main thing that we can do is see the future and some Founders can see further into the future then others. The futures we see, though, are just possible futures; they might not really happen if we change something. We also have some weak mind reading abilities as well as a very advanced ability to project things into other peoples minds; making them see things that aren't really there. Years and years ago the only way that you used to be able to tell if someone was a Founder was because they had purple eyes. These days you have to know what to look for in their genetics. I bet you actually know another Founder and you'd probably never be able to guess that he is one."
"Na-ah." Joey laughed.
"Do you have an uncle named Kyle?" asked Tyne.
"Kywe!?! Kywe's nod a foundew." Joey giggled. "Awe you Kywe?"
Kyle smiled. "I just found out too munchkin. Tyne is teachin' me how to handle the stuff I can do."
"Weawwy?" Joey replied with a shocked expression.
"So you guys might see what could happen, and probably can do something to change it?" KC said with a smile, scratching his head . "That's pretty sweet when you think of it."
"It can be," said Tyne.
Just then Dmitry started to dance around in one spot, "I'm gonna introduce myself if ya don't mind. I'm Dmitry, okay now I'm gonna go use your bathroom before I pee myself." Dmitry then grabbed Dominic's hand and started towards the bathroom, "And this is Dominic and I'm taking him with me."
"Through the kitch..." Marc managed to get out before being cut off.
"Oh we know where it's at," Dominic said has he was pulled across the room. "We've been here before. Oh which reminds me; Caleb, if I EVER see you kill a cup of coffee again like you did last week then we're gonna have to have a talk."
"And Marc, just so you know your lab floor is very comfortable," Dmitry added as they disappeared.
"Been here before?" Marc asked shrugging his shoulders.
"There's nothing wrong with how I like my coffee!" Caleb shouted after the two boys with a giggle.
"Not if you are a diabetic cow." Danny laughed.
"Mooooooooooooo!!!!!!" Timmy and Ricky both giggled in unison.
"I don't get it." Marc said, turning to Cory. "They didn't come in with you guys last time you were here."
Cory shrugged his shoulders. "How could ya' miss two hyper guys like that? You really need to take a break Marc."
"Sean, do something TO him, will you?" Marc said with a grin.
Sean started to reach down the back of Cory's pants, then suddenly pulled back hard with a hand full of underwear. "That work?" Sean giggled as Cory yelped and hopped around the room trying to clear his boxers from his butt crack.
"Yeah, I think so." Marc laughed as he watched Cory dance. "I still don't remember them being here though." He got out as the two boys returned.
"Okay, we're back," called Dmitry and he came back into the room still dragging Dominic. He stopped and eyed Cory hopping around, "So what did we miss?"
"The wedgie from hell, and Marc trying to figure out how you hid from him." Sean replied, still giggling.
"Oh if you didn't see us that's okay," Dmitry said with a grin. "We were just supposed to be watching you so Ark gave us cloaking things that made us invisible."
"We even managed to get a few slices of pizza and a few cups of coffee and you didn't even notice anything was missing," added Dominic.
"Told you I didn't eat all of that myself." Caleb said, sticking his tongue out at Noah.
"Yes you did!" Noah laughed. "I sat and watched you do it. Don't blame it on them." He finished with a giggle.
"Wait." Marc said, looking to be even more confused. "Who's the Ark?"
Danny smiled and wrapped his arm around Marc's shoulder. "Not a who, a what. I can explain that one later. Bro, you will not believe this story."
Timmy started pulling on Marc's arm. "Unka Marc; are you old guys done talkin' yet? I got a present for Joey.
"I guess so." Marc said with an astonished laugh.
"That means the introductions are officially over I guess." Noah said with a laugh as Joey looked over at Timmy.
"A pweasend? Fow me?"
Timmy grinned. "Uh huh. I hadda make ya somethin special cuz' you're special." Timmy got the bag Kyle had been holing for him and pulled out a teddy bear. "Here ya go; I made him 'pecial just like you. He's even got eyes like yours!"
"Oh WOW!" Joey said as Timmy handed him the bear. "Wooked Mw. Dyne. He god eyes wike mine, see." Joey said as he turned the bear to face Tyne. "One bwue, and one gween!" He said turning it back to look him over. "Dhanks Dimmy! He's soooo coow. Whad's his name?"
"I dunno - you gotta name him!" Timmy giggled.
"Oh." Joey said looking the bear over. "Can I caww him Dimmybeaw?" He asked as he hugged the bear tight.
"KEWL!!" Timmy replied as he gave Joey a huge hug.
"Who's Hungry? " Jerry shouted as he came in the front door with his mother right behind him. "Mom made sandwiches and stuff!"
"Gwanma! Gwanma! Wookid whad Dimmy gave me!" Joey squealed.
"Oh, he's so sweet." Mary said with a smile as Jerry began tearing the foil off the platters they had carried in. "I hope you thanked him."
"Uh-huh!" Joey said with a huge smile. "Dimmy god one doo, see?"
"They are almost as cute as you two are." Mary said, giving both boys a hug. "I hope I brought enough." She said to everyone as they filtered into the kitchen.
After eating, Dmitry, Dominic, Josiah, Gavin, and a few of the other boys wandered outside, some to see the ocean for the very first time in their lives.
The room broke into giggles as Teri came into CIC.
"It's about time y'all came home!" Teri announced with a smile. "Where are my juvinile delinquent sons hiding?"
"They should be home soon." a still-dripping Aaron replied. "They needed to pick up the rest of the crew."
"What happened to you?" Teri asked with a laugh.
Aaron stared at Nyo and the rest of the Ark crew for a second, then pointed to the line of soaked boys following him in. "It seems SOMEONES AI has a twisted sense of humor and decided to teleport two-thirds of us in above the pool instead of inside like the rest of the guys."
< Their minds were dirty, I thought giving them a dip in the pool might help. >
Stepan grinned, "See, Ark meant well."
Before Aaron could reply, Teri chuckled. "Knowing you Son, Ark is probably right! I assume that since all of you are back things have calmed down?"
"Yes ma'am it has," Nyo called from the floor where he was working. "The threat was dealt with and everyone is safe again. Ark is still working on pinpointing exactly who it was that gave the order but they have nothing to strike at anyone with right now so there's no danger."
The rest of the boys saw the look on Teri's face and scrambled for seats to watch the show. She smiled as she replied. "Thank you Nyo; that's good to hear. I believe we discussed addressing me already didn't we? You're one of the boys now; it's 'Teri' or 'Mom' young man!"
"Well technically I'm older then you so 'Mom' just doesn't work for me," chuckled Nyo. "I've got like fifty thousand years on you. I'll try and remember to call you 'Teri' though. I think Stepan is gonna be a hard sell on that one though Teri, he's a lot more proper then most of my guys."
Teri looked at the blond fifteen year old standing over Nyo, who had answered from under the console he was working on. "You must be Stepan then; Come over here a second."
Stepan frowned and then whispered something to Nyo in Russian.
"She doesn't bite, just go over there," Nyo said to whatever Stepan told him. "It'll still be a few minutes before I need your help testing this thing."
Stepan nodded and then slowly made his way over to Teri, "Yes Mrs. Short?"
JJ giggled. "Hey Ark; we're gonna need some popcorn here!"
"James Jacob Richardson! Can it!" Teri said before guiding Stepan to a nearby seat. "Stepan; I'm guessing from the way you just reacted you haven't had too good of luck with adults so far in your life, have you?"
"That depends on which adults you're referring to ma'am," replied Stepan. "People in general can be good, bad, or indifferent. I've seen and dealt with all of them, but it's not fair to say that only adults can fall into the bad and indifferent categories. To answer your question though, the last adult that I really dealt with wasn't a very nice person and did some very horrible things but I still don't hold that against anyone else. I'm just not a people person, ma'am. I prefer to be quiet if it's an option, me not wanting to leave Nyo's side to just cross the room stems from that; not the adults that have influenced my life."
"That's a really good outlook to have." Teri replied. "I'm going to tell you the same thing I tell the rest of the boys. I can tell from your speech patterns that you're raised to be very polite; so unlike most of these clowns I'll understand if you continue to call me ma'am. Any of these boys can tell you that one thing I'm totally serious about is that I consider every single one of the Clan 'my' boys. That goes for you too; any time you decide you need a Mom I'm here for you. Other than that, you guys all have taken on responsibilities that most adults would run from; I consider you an equal and would feel much more comfortable if you would address me as 'Teri' or 'Mom', which ever you would feel more comfortable using."
Stepan frowned again, "I do not want to make you uncomfortable Mrs. Short but I don't think I can think of you as either my mother or as just Teri. And regardless of whatever responsibilities I may or may not have taken on you are still to be respected as an elder in my eyes. The only reason that I don't refer to Nyo as either sir or Mr. Curameton after I found out how old he is is only because I'm dating him and it just wouldn't sound right. You are a woman of great importance though, and as such you deserve respect. I'm a technician, and while I do a good job I am not older then you or more important then you in the eyes of those that need you. It just doesn't seem right to call you anything else. And even if you were my mother you still deserve respect and honor."
Teri smiled. "Each of us is more important in our own way; don't underestimate yourself based on comparison with someone else. Nyo is very lucky having a boyfriend like you; and I can understand where your manners are leading you to address me like you do. You can be both respectful and casual at the same time; I'll let you find the place where you are most comfortable talking to me without being totally formal. No matter how you feel about addressing me, I'll still be here if you need advice or just a second opinion from someone with more experience in life."
"I don't underestimate myself just my ability to do your job," replied Stepan. "Each of us have a reason for being here, even the bad people. We can always learn from what others say and do, and it helps mold who we are in different ways. I could collect garbage and that wouldn't make me any less of a person then you are, that I have no doubt of; but I might not have as much to offer the world as you do, I will however have more to offer the people I love then you might. My importance as a whole and as a part are often two very different things and while they might have the same effect they don't always have the same impact being that they only affect maybe one person. I never doubt my own importance but I can certainly recognize yours. If I ever do need help and I find myself in need of what you excel at passing on to others then I will come to you, I promise. But I never expect you to have to come to me for anything that falls into the same category. As such I will always find you to be my elder, but maybe some day I'll be able to bring myself to call you by your first name rather then your last name. If you want the best I can offer is Mrs. Teri."
"I'll accept that." Teri replied. "You might find that I could easily come to you for help in areas where I'm weak. What makes a person strong is not what you do but if you are willing to accept your weaknesses and go to others when it is needed. A wise person knows that; a fool believes he can do it all."
"Well unless you need advice on computers, the Russian Orthodox Church, or almost dying then I won't be much help," said Stepan. "I can agree with what you're saying though. Now, is there anything else I can do for you Mrs. Teri?"
"Yes; you can take care of all of your new brothers. Who knows, maybe you can even convince them to hold informal theological discussions on Sundays. Something tells me you are the only Clan member qualified to lead a discussion like that."
"I'll consider the discussions," said Stepan. "And I'll watch out for everyone else when I get a chance."
"Hey Step, I'm just about ready for ya," Nyo called.
"I'll be right with you Nyo" Stepan replied. "Mrs. Teri, may I be excused?"
"Yes you may. Try to keep Nyo from working too hard; he seems a lot like Cory and it takes a strong person to keep them from completely absorbing themselves in work. You are probably the only person who has a chance at teaching him the other parts of life. Go on and help him; I've got a few boys to hunt down."
Stepan came back over to Nyo, "So how's it going Nyo?"
"Okay, this is a nightmare," Nyo said from underneath the new computer terminal he was installing. "This console was designed to run on Ark's systems not plug into the wall like these others. And interfacing this thing is just..."
Stepan grinned, "Oh it's not that bad, you know you like it."
"Umm, are we still talking about the same thing?" asked Nyo.
"I think Dmitry is rubbing off on you," replied Stepan. "I'll need to wash that off of you later."
"I can't believe we're still working even when away from Ark," said Nyo. "Okay Step, try it now."
Stepan entered the command to bring the console online, "Well you're not yelling so I assume nothings on fire. I've only got half power though."
"Yeah everything looks good down here," said Nyo. "Only half power though? Hmmm, okay turn it off again and I'll see what I can do. I should just have to adjust the intake...I think. Humanity needs to find one power standard and just stick with it."
Stepan smiled, "I'll start on converting the holographic emitters while you're fixing that problem. Just give a yell when you want me to try again."
"Andy, Alec; stop swapping spit and get over here you goofballs." Stepan heard Teri call.
"Hmmm, swapping spit, can we do that later?" Nyo asked softly.
Stepan grinned, "As soon as we get done we can practice spit swapping if you want. Both of us NEED the practice badly."
"Awesome," smiled Nyo.
"I think they're telling Teri about the vampire in the other room," said Stepan as he listened to Andy and Alec fill Teri in. "I don't think she believes them."
"Mom?" Aaron said as he rushed over to join Teri, Andy, and Alec.
"Yes Aaron?" said Teri.
"I think Aaron's going to try and explain it to her," said Stepan.
"Oh this I gotta hear," giggled Nyo.
"You might want to sit back down." Aaron replied seriously. "Between the answers I got from Ark, Nyo, Tyne and Brant I think I've got the facts pretty straight." Aaron waited for Teri to sit down before he continued. "First off, Brant is actually a human sub-species called Moroi. The Moroi were created by the Founders before Ark was even built, which means the species is a lot older than Nyo. Their creation was not planned to go the way it went; the rebel group that was targeted by the virus that the Founders created was just supposed to become allergic to sunlight. Instead the virus caused them to turn into Moroi; instead of their bodies needing food to survive, they required human blood. From what I understand the Moroi back then were just like the legends of Vampires that we have now; bloodthirsty criminals who did not care who they killed as long as they fed. A lot of time has passed since that happened; over the cycles between then and now it seems the most violent ones were wiped out by being hunted and killed for their indiscretion while the ones who used their curse to generally better society by pruning out the bad apples survived. Today a Moroi that goes on a rampage has more chance of being killed by his own kind than he does by humans. From what I understand the Moroi only need to feed about once a month unless they get injured. As far as Brant goes; he killed a Moroi who was breaking unwritten rules by attacking Kyle. Brant's conscience won't let him kill when he's feeding no matter how much the person deserves it; Sean said he saw that himself. Brant gets plenty of warning when he starts to get 'hungry', so he has enough time to find a suitable 'donor' to feed on. With all of the kid pimps who seem to think Florida is a good place to pick up new 'employees' I'm sure he won't have an issue finding a meal. We'll just have to finish off what is left after he is done, which is something we would have done anyways to that trash."
"You know what; I think you got it all Aaron," Nyo added. "If you missed anything though I think only Tyne would notice, but he's not here so good job."
"Thanks bro." Aaron replied. "Mom, trust me. I know for a fact that if Brant was any danger he wouldn't be here right now. Tyne was ready to kill him if there was even a chance of him looking at one of my brothers the wrong way. I don't know if you've met Tyne yet or not; but he was involved in building Ark so he knows more about the Moroi than any other human alive today, including the Moroi themselves."
"The Ark terminal is up and running!" said Nyo as he slid out from under the terminal.
"And I've got the holographics working!" added Stepan and he brought the emitter he was mounting to the wall online.
Suddenly the holographic emitter that Stepan was talking about came to life and a fourteen year old with bright green hair appeared in the room.
"Well that took ya long enough," grinned, Cyna as he pretended to brush himself off. "It was getting stuffy in that compound."
"Green hair?" said Stepan. "Don't you have any compassion for our eyes?"
"Nope, none at all," replied Cyna. "So what's up?"
Aaron chuckled. "Hey Cyna! Mom, this is Cyna; he's kinda been living inside Ark since day one. Cyna, this is Cory, Sean, and my Mom; Teri Short. I was just trying to explain Brant to her."
"It's wonderful to meet you my dear lady," Cyna said to Teri as he took a bow. "If there is anything you need to know about what Brant is just let me know and I can fill you in. When I was alive I was Tyne's husband and I know just as much if not more about the Moroi then he does."
Teri nodded her head to acknowledge the bow. "It is a pleasure young man. I only have one question; how safe is my family really Cyna?"
"That's a very good question," replied Cyan. "Well Moroi started with a very violent history but if you compare them to humanity I think you'll find humanity to be much more so. Over the years Moroi have turned from where they started and have almost tried to better themselves, as we wish humans would. And while their world is still filled with mean people, a Moroi is just like a human as far as personality and temperament goes; they were human at one point so that makes sense really. You asked though if your family is safe and that's part of the answer, you see. Brant is a very good person; he has his heart in the right place even to the point where he can't finish the people he does feed on. And like all Moroi he knows when he has to feed so unless he forces himself not to go out and feed then he has complete control about who he feeds on. Brant won't ever want to hurt any of your family so I know he'll make sure to let them know when he needs to feed. And so in my opinion your family is very safe. I think some of the people you pass on the street and in the supermarket would be more of a danger to your family then Brant could ever be."
"Thank you Cyna. Between that and what Aaron said I'll give him a chance. How is it that his species is not public knowledge today though?" Teri replied.
"Because their government and yours have a deal," said Cyna. "They keep the balance and silence between the two."
"See Mom; you're not too far off when you call a politician a bloodsucking leech." Aaron giggled.
"Smart alec!" Teri replied as she stood up. "Thank you for the help Cyna. Considering the way the politicians are always keeping secrets that makes sense. I need to get these guys going here; Alec, Andy; I guess you can go like you are. Gabe, Trav; grab your boys and ride along. Helen wants to show off her grandsons."
Cyna nodded and then watched Teri, Alec, and Andy head out of CIC. Gabe and Travis followed with their boys in tow. Cyna smiled and stared off into space for a moment.
"You okay Cyna?" asked Nyo as he packed up his tools.
"Huh? Oh yeah, I'm fine," replied Cyna as he snapped out of his daze. "Just thinking about something I never told Tyne. It makes me happy to think about but I think he'd be upset if I ever told him now. He probably wouldn't be here now though if I had told him way back when I was first put into this thing."
"What was it about?" said Nyo. "I mean I don't mean to pry but if you'd like to talk about it..."
"It was something special that I did for Tyne but I died before I got a chance to tell him about it," said Cyna. "I know he'd be upset if I told him about it now though."
Nyo frowned, "If it was something special then why would he be upset about it?"
"You'd understand if I told you what it was," said Cyna.
Stepan looked back and forth between Nyo and Cyna and then back at the door everyone had left from. Suddenly Stepan's eyes got really big, "I think I know what it was. Shouldn't you have talked to him about it before doing something like that though? I mean that's a really important kind of thing, don't you think?"
Cyna looked at Stepan intently, "I...yeah I probably should have. I knew at the time though that he would have been okay with it. But after...please don't say anything to him Stepan."
"I won't, but you should," said Stepan as he turned to Nyo. "Are we done here?"
"Umm yeah," Nyo replied slowly.
Stepan smiled and grabbed Nyo's hand, "Cool, lets go swimming then. We'll talk to you later Cyna!"
Cyna watched Stepan and Nyo leave CIC. Nyo gave Stepan a questioning look but Stepan just shook his head no. Cyna sighed, "Maybe someday I'll tell him Stepan, but not anytime soon."
Aidan set down his tool kit and sat down, "Ark I'm taking a break! Jeez, how much work still has to be done?!"
< Well it would be going faster if I did not have to train the both of you. But that is okay, it will get done eventually. >
Ethan took a seat next to Aidan, "Yeah well your eventually will pick up much later, you're wearing us out Ark."
< I am sorry, that is not my intent. I thought that the both of you were able to function in stressful conditions. >
"Umm...I don't remember the last time I had to rappel over a mile down into a very large computer to fix something at the bottom," said Ethan. "A mile mind you!"
< Yes, I know how deep my own core is. So what is the problem? Nyo can do that with no problems afterward. >
"Then Nyo's in fantastically stellar shape," replied Aidan as he pulled a bottle of water out of his tool box. "No wonder Stepan looked like hell before he left, you're expecting us to be able to keep up with what you made Nyo to do and we're just not used to it."
< Well I will try and keep that in...just a moment. I have a program requesting lower level activation. >
"Lower level?" said Aidan. "Ark, quit messing around with us; you just ran us all over this place, unless you're in your core or a memory bay or the construction areas this place only has one level."
< I can not access information about the level but my systems have just recognized that it is there. The program is requesting a vacuum test and recompression before it proceeds. I am unable to tell the program no, I only have the ability to approve it. >
"Is there a problem?" Ethan said in a worried tone.
< I am not sure. >
"You, the all super and powerful Ark isn't sure?" said Ethan.
"Ark, maybe you should page Cyna," suggested Aidan. "If there's a problem we don't know what we're doing."
< I...I think I will do that, I am not sure what to make of this at all. Cyna may have some idea what this program and its claim of a second level is; stand by. >
A few seconds later one of the consoles in the room came to life and Cyna appeared in front of it.
Cyna looked down at where Ethan and Aidan were sitting and smiled, "What's up guys?"
"Hey Cyna," said Ethan. "Ark's got a problem."
Cyna frowned, "Oh? Ark what's wrong?"
< I have a program that I do not know making a request about something I have no information on. >
"Well what DO you know about the program?" asked Cyna. "It's not a computer virus is it?"
< No it has a Founder Council signature to it but I have no record of the information it is talking about. It is requesting a vacuum test and recompression of the lower level of the compound. >
"The lower level?" Cyna said slowly. "Does it say why it wants you to recompress the lower level?"
< I do not have a lower level. >
"Umm yeah you do, the access to it is in the room Tyne was being kept in," replied Cyna. "The lower level was where most of the experimental labs were at. Things like teleportation development, neural mapping and training, data imaging, genetic development, and the vision archive. The level was supposed to be sealed off when the Council was to leave. It's a level that wouldn't ever be needed for anything ever again from what I remember."
< Is that why I am able to recognize the systems to recompress the level but I can not sense that the level is there? >
"Probably," Cyna said as he looked up at one of the other console displays and then tilted his head. The display came to life and began to open programs. "I'll see if I can find something on it in the Council entries, I should have access to any information on programs that the Council wrote."
< What should I tell the program? >
"Just hang on for a second," replied Cyna. "Is it named 'Level 2: Stage 1 - Restoration Preparation'?"
< Yes, that would be the programs name. >
"Its job is to bring the level back online at a given timestamp activation," said Cyna. "At that point it is supposed to activate a program called 'Level 2: Stage 2 - Restoration Activation'. I'm looking for that program now. Oh, not looking, found. Damn, the program is locked."
Ethan and Aidan got up and moved closer to Cyna. "Locked?" said Ethan. "But aren't you the Hand of the Seer? Just unlock it."
< Yes, what Ethan said. >
Cyna shook his head, "I wish I could but it's part of a packet of data that was locked by more then one Council member. So no matter what position I hold, heck I could even be Tyne, and I would still need at least one more Council member to help me open the file."
< Well what should I tell the first program? >
Cyna looked over the name of the programs again and thought to himself for a few seconds before replying, "I'm not exactly sure what the reason for bringing the second level back online would be. Let the first program run and let us know when the recompression is finished. When the second program asks to proceed though just hold and let us know. In the meantime I'll see if I can get a hold of at least one other Council member."
"Who are you calling?" asked Aidan.
"Most of them are busy, I think Kyle is free though. I just hope he has his sub-vocal on," said Cyna as he tilted his head again and the screen brought up the communications interface. "Hey Kyle, are you there?"
"Dude, you just interrupted some serious spit-swapping! I almost bit Ty's tongue! Wazzup?" came the reply.
"And you said Kyle wasn't doing anything," giggled Aidan. "Sounds like what he was doing was really important if you ask me."
Cyna grinned, "Hey Kyle, sorry to interrupt but I need your help with something. We've come across a small problem here at the Ark Compound and it requires more then one Council member to unlock a file related to the problem. I was wondering if you'd be able to come back to the compound here and give me a hand."
"Sure; I'm bringing Ty with me," said Kyle "Give me a minute to let someone know where we are going then I'll be right down."
"Awesome, thanks," replied Cyna. "Just let me know when you're ready."
About a minute later Kyle replied. "Beam me out Scotty; there's no intelligent life up here!"
< He has a point. Stand by. >
Suddenly Kyle and Tyler appeared in the room just a few feet from where Cyna was standing.
"Hey guys," smiled Cyna. "Let me fill you in really quick. Ark has run across a program that wants to reactivate the lower level of the compound, I want more information on the second program that runs after it but the files have been locked. I need your help to unlock the file so we can see what the program does and why."
Kyle and Ty's giggles diminished over Kyle's request for transport. "I have the authority to do that?" Kyle asked.
"Well, you are the head of Council Intelligence, Nitor," replied Cyna.
"He gives good head too!" Tyler giggled.
"TYLER!!!" Kyle exclaimed as he turned seven shades of red. "Just for that no nipple nibbling for you!" Kyle then turned to Cyna. "I guess that makes sense Cyna; let's do it."
Cyna smiled and shook his head before continuing, "Right. Ark, request file lock removal on Council File Z136."
< At least two Council voice patterns required. Would you like to proceed? >
"Yes," replied Cyna.
< Proceed with first voice print now. >
"Cyna Spiritus Oraculum, Hand of the Seer."
< Voice print confirmed. Please proceed with second voice print now. >
"Kyle Calvin Richardson, Council Nitor."
< Voice print confirmed. The lock on Council file Z136 has been removed. >
"Okay, cool," said Cyna. "Give me a second to look through the files." Cyna once again tilted his head and the files began to fill up not just one display but four. A few seconds later the files stopped unpacking and opening. "Project Restoration," Cyna read. "This project is authorized and organized by the Council themselves; the old Council." Cyna kept reading, "Project Restoration's purpose is to preserve the Founders as a species and...wait a minute, some of these files are schematics for cryo-stasis systems. What the heck?" Cyna suddenly brought up a roster list that contained the names of four children, "Oh my God, they put four others into cyro-stasis after Tyne was asleep." Cyna began to read the list, "Rylan Perscribo, Javyk Creo, Syris Eruditio, and Matyas Oracu..." Cyna froze when he read the last name. "No, oh God no," Cyna whispered in shock.
"What's wrong Cyna?" Kyle asked with concern.
< Recompression complete. The second program is asking to continue. >
"Ark, don't do anything yet!" Cyna looked around and then pointed at Aidan's tool kit, "Aidan, give Kyle your tool kits holographic emitter, quickly!" Aidan quickly got the emitter from his kit and handed it to Kyle. "Kyle, it has a clip on it; clip it to your belt or shirt and turn it on. I have to get down to the lower level, these records can't be right, they just can't be."
As Kyle took the equipment and clipped it on his belt, he turned to Tyler. "Ty, you think you can try to calm him down? I'd kinda like to know what we're going into here."
Tyler shook his head. "Sorry babe; I don't do electrons. He's your ancestor; you figure him out!"
"The level has been recompressed, there isn't any danger," Cyna said sounding very panicked. "Kyle, you don't understand, I have to get down there. If these records are right...God, Tyne is going to kill me, he'll kill me!" Cyna stopped for a moment and took a breath trying his best to calm down a little, "Kyle, do you understand how important a last name is to a Founder?"
Kyle tilted his head. "Kinda. I guess it's kinda like the old English people they talked about in school; your last name is what told people how important you are."
"It's very much like that Kyle," Cyna said in a very quickened voice. "A Founder's last name is very important to them, it tells you what house they belong to, what family they are a part of. Kind of like how you're a member of Clan Short, that's your family. No two Founders ever have the same last name unless they are members of the same family. Tyne is a member of the Oraculum House, the Oracles. They have always led our Council, the Oraculum's were the first Founders ever created. When I married Tyne I was brought into that House because their house is greater then my house...actually to our house, the Fervidus House. Now Kyle, knowing that what does it mean to you now if I say that Tyne was the only son of the Seer in my time, that after he married me we were the last two of that house, and that the last name on that roster...is Oraculum."
Kyle thought for a second. "Ark, did Tyne's parents have any other kids after Tyne was put in here?"
< Velaria Oraculum died giving birth to Tyne. Cyos Oraculum died in the Moroi attack that also claimed the life of Cyna Oraculum. >
Cyna continued a little further, "When I was alive I went to the Council and had them authorize something very special for me and Tyne. I had Tyne's own father approve it but I never told Tyne about it, I wanted it to be a surprise to him because I know he wanted this badly. But then I died Kyle, I was killed and Tyne was so wrapped up in my death that if I would have told him he may have not cared anymore; he felt his life ended when mine did and he gave himself to the Council as they wanted willingly. If I would have told him...I don't know what the outcome would have been."
Tyler smiled. "You gave him a kid? Wow, that's awesome!"
Kyle nodded. "Yeah; but I think I understand where Cyna is coming from. Look how Tyne reacted to Brant. You guys are lucky; you haven't been stuck seeing inside everyone's head all your lives. When something like that happens it messes you up in the head; Tyne might notta been able to take care of his kid because it would remind him of Cyna and his dad. Some of the guys back at the home had that happen after one of their parents died; the other parent took it out on them. It might be different now though Cyna; I think our brothers have helped Tyne some. I'd look to see, but Tyne says I'm not supposed to unless he says it's okay to try."
"Kyle, please can we just go look," begged Cyna as he began to cry. "Whether Tyne wants him or not if he's down there I want to see him, he's my son too."
"We really need to find you a body Grandpa Cyna." Kyle giggled. "We'll help you with Tyne. Ark; could you please get us as close to that area as possible?"
< Well you could always use the door; I mean do I look like your personal teleportation system or something? I will do it just this once but you will use the door to get back up here. Kyle, please turn the holographic emitter on so that Cyna can transfer to it. >
As soon as Kyle turned the device on they instantly found themselves standing in the middle of a large room between four cryo-stasis units. Each one had its own computer terminal displaying the status and names of each boy. Cyna quickly looked around the room and when he found the one he was looking for he all but ran over to it.
Cyna looking through the glass at the frozen brown hair boy inside and started crying, "Matyas, I'm so sorry. You shouldn't be here; they shouldn't have done this to you." Cyna did his best to hug the glass as he continued to cry.
Kyle walked over and joined Cyna. "Ark, can you hear us in here?"
< Yes Kyle, I can still here you. Do you need something? >
Kyle smiled. "Great! Do you know if this boy was ever in the room with Tyne after Tyne was put to sleep?"
< Well I will have to check, I just got access to this information in some ways. But in what way do you mean? I mean, the room Tyne was in was also where the entrance to this floor was so in a sense every one of these boys had to have passed through the room Tyne was in. If you are asking for more then that though then yes, I seem to have a very large collection of video, audio, and text information on the subject. So, yes I suppose he was, why do you ask? >
"Going by the information you have, would you conclude that this boy was aware of his relationship to Tyne?
< Well of course, Cyna's parents raised the boy. He would know who both his parents were as both were not only part of very important Founder Houses but also very important in Founder history. Every Founder knew about what happened to Cyna and he was seen as a diplomatic hero. And everyone knew what Tyne was to do in the future and he was seen as a savior for that. Cyna's parents made sure that the boy knew just how much his parents meant to both their people as well as their family. Most of the information you were asking about is just conversations that the boy had with Tyne while Tyne was in cryo-stasis. >
"Thank you Ark; that's what I expected to hear. I just wanted to make sure. Cyna, as Uncle Spock would say, it's only logical that he was put in here. You and Tyne are heroes; from what Ark just said your son was attached to Tyne even though he was asleep. I'll bet the council thought that is was only right that Tyne have his son by his side when the world was right again. I'll also bet this boy put up a fight if anyone tried to talk him out of being with his father; if he's anything like Tyne it probably was a one-sided fight too."
Cyna looked down at the boy in the cyro-stasis unit again and smiled, "You're probably right, if he's anything like Tyne then there would be no arguing with him if that's what he wanted. He looks a lot like Tyne too." Cyna looked back over at Kyle, gave him his best puppy dog look complete with quivering lip and added, "So can I wake him?"
Kyle smiled. "I'd like to say yes, but first do you think Tyne will take it better if we tell him first, or will he just accept it if we wait to tell him until after the boy is already awake?"
"I don't know if my view is really valid or not here," Ethan said timidly. "But wouldn't it be better to do it now so you can brief them and let them know what exactly is happening? I mean it sounds like this isn't exactly the world that they were planned to wake up to but here Ark is waiting to execute a program that thinks it is."
Cyna smiled, "I think he's got a point. What do you think Kyle?"
"I think when they messed with his genes they made him smarter. Great idea Ethan! Ark, stand by to execute program." said Kyle.
"Hey, well he's not blond," giggled Aidan. "Ethan's always been smart!"
< Executing program. One minute until program completion. >
Suddenly all four cryo-stasis units began to hiss and beep.
"Whoops!" Kyle giggled. "Sorry Cyna; I kinda took your fun away there! Hey, does that mean Mat is related to me?"
Cyna grinned, "He'd be a very distant cousin but yeah he's related to you."
"KEWL!" Kyle exclaimed before pulling Tyler into a hug. "You hear that? I've got a REAL COUSIN!!"
Tyler giggled. "Awesome! Can I breathe now?"
Just then the doors on the cryo units began to open filling the room with a light mist as they did. Cyna looked down at his son and watched as he moved a little and then slowly opened his eye.
"Five more minutes," Matyas mumbled in Founder as he tried to turn over before realizing where he was and then looking up at the strange group around his unit. "Umm hi?"
"Ark, I need to learn Founder, QUICK!" Kyle exclaimed. "I wanna talk to my cousin!"
< I would have to put you to sleep to give you that language; I can not load anything into your mind while you are awake unless you were in the IIM. >
Matyas looked at Kyle with a strange look. "Ark, why can't I understand him?" Matyas asked in Founder.
"I got this Ark," Cyna said quickly. "He can't understand you Matyas because our language has been dead for some time. He's speaking English."
Matyas looked at Cyna and suddenly his eyes got really big, "You look like the pictures I've seen of one of my fathers."
"I'm the neural image of Cyna Oraculum," grinned Cyna.
Matyas smiled, "Awesome! Hi Pop! Is Dad here too?"
"He's away at the moment," replied Cyna.
"Oh okay, that's fine," said Matyas as looked he looked over at Kyle again. "So who is this?"
"This is your cousin Kyle and next to him is his boyfriend Tyler," said Cyna. "Kyle's kind of upset that he can't talk to you though. He'll have to pick up the language later if he can."
"Or I'll pick up his," added Matyas as he reached for Kyle and motioned for him to come closer.
Kyle grinned as he came alongside Mat. "You better warn him about my head Cyna; Tyne says it's still kinda funky."
Cyna nodded, "Matyas, be careful with him, he's just learning to use his skills. Tyne's told him not to read anyone's mind until his gets used to its new setup."
"I'll be careful, I promise," said Matyas as he took hold of Kyle's hand and smiled. "Can you hear me now?" Matyas thought.
"Hey Cuz! Welcome to cycle four! I'm glad to meet you." Kyle thought back. "I heard Cyna introduce me and Ty. You about ready to learn about everything you missed?"
Matyas giggled and thought, "You think too fast, slow down, I can't index you like I can everything else. I'm using some really old techniques to do this so I don't hurt either of us. But yeah, I just woke up; let me make sure the rest of the guys are okay first before we get into what we missed."
Kyle mentally giggled. "Okay. I really need to make time for Ark to teach me Founder; Tyne says English is hard to understand 'cuz a lot of the words that we use have too many meanings for one word. It'd make it lots easier to fill you guys in."
Matyas nodded and then let go of Kyle's hand so he could get up. As he did he looked up at Cyna and grinned, "I think Kyle reminds me of Aunt Cylisa in looks and mannerism, just a little don't you think?"
Cyna looked over at Kyle, back at Matyas, and then cracked up laughing, "Yeah I guess he does. I think he descended from Cylisa though so that's okay." Cyna looked back at Kyle and grinned, "He says you look and act like one of my sisters."
Kyle gave Tyler an evil stare as Ty started giggling. "Is that a good thing?"
"I think so, she was my favorite, and youngest sister. I'll ask," said Cyna as he turned back to Matyas. "Is that a good thing?"
Matyas stood up straight and began to look himself over, "Yeah, who else do you think I played with growing up. She was only a few years older then me. Drove Grandma nuts whenever we'd get together and scheme."
Cyna smiled, "Yeah Kyle, it's a good thing."
"I wish there was a faster way to learn Founder." Kyle commented. "That way I could tell Mat that he ain't gotta look; he's still cute even if he is my cousin."
Matyas looked up at Kyle and grinned as if he understood him before he started walking over to the next cryo-stasis unit.
"I think he likes you Kyle," said Cyna as he followed behind Matyas. "At least now I can't wake up with my eye brows shaved off like my sister use to do. God help the rest of us though."
Matyas helped the boy out of the unit and quickly spoke with him in Founder before he turned to Kyle and motioned for him and Tyler to come over.
"I guess pranks must run in the family; there's this really kewl stuff called 'Nair' ..." giggled Kyle as he joined his new cousin.
"Rylan Perscribo," Matyas said while pointing at the boy he just helped. Matyas then pointed at Kyle, "Mei cioursyn Kyle." He then pointed at Tyler, "Huys Socius Tyler."
Rylan smiled and then nodded his head in both Kyle and Tyler's direction.
Matyas then grabbed Kyle's hand again and thought, "Rylan is our database know-it-all. He's a little quiet but he's a good guy."
Tyler quickly got Cyna's attention. "Cyna; could you explain to Mat that it's 'soon to be'? We're waiting for the Council to get back together to do the ceremony."
As Tyler was speaking aloud, Kyle replied to Mat mentally. "I have some guys I call brothers who are the same way. Oh, Ty and I are waiting for the next council session to make it official; Socius has just been reinitiated by the Council in our last meeting."
"Oh, sorry," thought Matyas as he looked back at Rylan and corrected himself, "Tyler es Kyle tobimurys, ni Socius yit."
"I think Kyle already did Tyler," said Cyna. "Matyas just told Rylan that you're Kyle's 'soon to be' and not his husband yet."
Just then the other two boys from the other units came over, with Ethan and Aidan right behind them.
Matyas grinned and thought, "The boy on the left is Syris Eruditio, our intelligence guy, and the boy on the right is Javyk Creo, our research and development guy." Matyas then quickly introduced Cyna, Kyle, and Tyler to the new boys in Founder before looked at Ethan and Aidan and thinking, "Who are they?"
Kyle smiled. "Thanks! That's Ethan and Aidan. Ethan can use his mind to really mess up anything made of metal. Aidan is more fun; he can make himself invisible just like he was wearing a cloak. He's kinda shy though, so instead of him blushing he just disappears!"
"I imagine those abilities could be helpful," Matyas thought as he grinned. "It sounds like you've had practice making him vanish."
Suddenly though Syris came forward and knelt in front of Kyle. "Nitor, I am at your service if you should ever need me," Syris said in English.
Kyle's eyebrows shot up, and then he became totally serious. "Syris, you know things which I am still learning. Yet there are many things new for you to learn. If it pleases the Seer I wish for you to be my Second; as such if I am not present your word would be equal to mine."
"If that is what you want," replied Syris. "As I said, any way you need me."
"Showoff," Matyas mumbled in Founder.
Syris looked up at Matyas and grinned, "Yes sir."
"Syris probably pulled your language from either Ethan or Aidan," thought Matyas. "He's trained to read past any block, and he's got filter training so he can take in any amount of information and pick through it like a puzzle until he's got what he wants. Just don't lie to him, ever, or you'll lose his trust forever."
"I think he's gonna like Xain then!" Kyle thought back. "You'll meet him later; but first there are a few surprises for you guys. Don't worry about lies; pretty much the only time that happens is when someone gets to pushy about something that is none of their business. Since Syris and I can talk normally, I think I can get him caught up before he has to deal with the rest of the gang so he knows what is usually off limits unless freely offered."
"Good luck telling him he has limits," Matyas thought. "The last Nitor, his father, didn't believe in secrets. So have fun with that one. Now, I'm sure you don't mind us standing around naked but can we get some clothes and maybe run by the IIM?"
"Dmitry would say no to the clothes; but if it'd make you more comfortable just ask Ark and it'll come up with something. According to your Pop your Dad holds the record for being hard-headed; even though it's not something I ever want to do again, I did just stand up to him on an issue and managed to get him to look at it from another viewpoint. I really don't recommend doing that though; he really hates it when he is proven wrong."
"I already know how hard-headed my father is, I grew up watching what video records Ark had on both of my fathers. My Dad gets his hard-headedness from his father," thought Matyas. "I know where the clothing locker is though, this was planned for."
Matyas then let go of Kyle's arm, ran to the other side of the room, and grabbed four sealed packages. He then handed one to each of the other three new boys and then tore into the last one himself.
"We had our uniforms sealed just in case Ark didn't still have our size," said Syris as he pulled his uniform from his package and began to get dressed. "Always be prepared if you can."
Matyas quickly pulled his uniform on, zipped it up, and then grabbed Kyle's hand again.
"Did you open the door out of here or did you cheat to get here?" thought Matyas as he grinned. "The quicker I can get to the IIM the sooner I can stop having to talk to you through touch."
"We cheated; but Ark is being a baby and said we have to walk out." Kyle giggled. "If you wanna get even though just call it a 'she' or 'he'; it hates that! 'Mommy' really gets it going!"
Matyas frowned as he thought, "I'm sorry, I can't poke fun at my family's life work. Ark is what it is because our people made it that way. It exists because we poured what was left of our people into it so that it can give back to the world what the world was bound to forget but deserved to know. I think it would be wrong for me to poke fun at that, don't you think?"
Matyas let go of Kyle's arm and then turned to the three other Founders, quickly addressing them in Founder before heading to the other side of the room where there was a door. Rylan and Javyk quickly followed after him.
Syris watched them leave the room and frowned, "Did I miss something?"
"Don't worry about it Syris," said Cyna. "I'm sure Matyas is just getting frustrated with not understanding everyone."
Kyle shook his head. "No; I think I got him mad because he did not understand how we pick on Ark sometimes. I didn't get a chance to tell him Ark picks back at us too. Ark, I think you might have developed more of a personality than what they expected by watching for so long. We all do know that you don't have a human body so there really is no way for you to be male or female; it just feels wrong to call you 'it' when you say or do something that shows that you are looking out for us. I don't know how to explain that to Mat though."
"Well if you want to explain it then go catch up to him," replied Cyna. "Get into the IIM with him; he'll be able to understand you better in there. Syris will go with you to translate if you want, but just tell him that you need to explain and he won't put up a fight. If Matyas was using the technique that I think he was using to talk to you then he might have just been putting too much stress on himself to wonder why you said what you said. The technique puts a lot of mental stress on him but makes it so he can communicate through free form thought. It was probably the mental stress; I told him to be careful but it I think he's too much like Tyne to consider himself in the 'careful' equation in his head."
"You're probably right sir," added Syris. "Mat does not normally run off if he's upset with someone, he normally talks it out with them. I will translate for you Nitor if you want to go after him."
Kyle nodded. "That would help a lot Syris. Thank you. Ark? Is there any possibility of you helping us catch up with Mat?"
< After you had such a nice thing to say about me? Of course I would not mind, stand by. >
Suddenly Kyle, Tyler, and Syris found themselves standing in the IIM room.
< I am putting Ethan and Aidan back to work, I have systems that need fixed. Good luck Kyle. >
Just as Ark had finished speaking Matyas, Rylan, and Javyk came into the room. Matyas frowned when he saw Kyle was already in the room.
"Matyas!" called Syris. "Jurst a seciondi, y thuync iour huavalie muysurndierystoodi waihuat cile waias saiyngui waihuat hue waias saiyngui fory. Pilease lyt huymu expilayn." Matyas looked at Syris and nodded so Syris continued; telling Matyas what Kyle had just told Cyna a few minutes earlier. Syris also added what Cyna said about stress.
Matyas sighed and then nodded his head in agreement before turning to Kyle and giving him an apologetic smile, "Waiourldi iour lyce ti joyn mue?"
"He wants do know if you would like to join him," translated Syris. "I repeated what you said earlier, he understands now I think."
Kyle nodded his head. "I would be honored."
Syris turned back to Matyas, "Hue saydi hue waiourldi bee huonoryedi."
Matyas smiled, opened the IIM, and then began to strip off his uniform. He hopped in and then motioned for Kyle to join him.
"I guess that means that I need to be nude too then?" Kyle asked as he started undressing.
"Umm, oh yeah," Syris said as he started to watch Kyle undress. "The IIM can't work with clothes; they'd end up being fused to your body if you did. After you're undressed just hop into the spot in front of Matyas. He'll take care of the rest."
Javyk giggled off to the side, "Looc ourt Kyle, Syris thuyncs iour'rye ciurte!"
Syris blushed and looked away, "Sorry Nitor, I didn't mean to watch you. Tyler is very lucky to have such a cute boyfriend though."
"Don't worry about it; looking don't hurt anyone." Kyle replied as he finished stripping. "Ty knows I would never cheat on him."
"I...I know he does," Syris said softly. "He's the one that I got most of my information from, including the language. He's the easiest to read with him being an empath. He loves you very much too. You're both very lucky to have one another. I'm sorry for looking at stuff I shouldn't look at from what I got from him though; I probably don't have that right anymore. I...I'm sorry." Syris straightened up, cleared his throat, and then looked over at Matyas, "Mat is waiting for you, you should probably join him now."
Kyle looked Syris in the eye. "We have a lot more in common than you know Syris. What you've done so far probably saved a huge misunderstanding. Why don't you try to help the rest of the guys start to understand English while I'm in here with Mat. Maybe that way we can make sure it don't happen again. I have not caught you doing anything different than I would do in the same situation, so you have nothing to feel sorry about." Kyle then turned and climbed in with Mat.
As soon as Kyle was in Matyas pulled the lid closed and started entering commands on the key pad inside. Matyas then put his hand on Kyle's shoulder. "Now just relax," thought Matyas. "Your mind is stable enough for this, so don't worry about anything. Just close your eyes and picture the most calming thing you can think of. Let me know when you're ready."
Kyle nodded, then pictured his nightly cuddle session with Tyler. After only a few second he softly said "I'm ready."
Suddenly Kyle found himself standing in the middle of an empty white room with Matyas standing next to him. Matyas lifted his hand and instantly the room changed into a very old and comfortable looking library.
Matyas closed his eyes for a few seconds and then grinned, "There we go, I think I got the right language. Can you understand me Kyle?"
"Yeah; that's lots better!" Kyle replied. "How'd you do that?"
"Well when in the IIM all you really have to do is think about what you want to know and if Ark has the information it is instantly thrown into the past part of your mind to be indexed by the present," explained Matyas. "So Ark will give you any information you want if you know the right thing to ask for. Most people leave this room just blank white when they get in here though. I hate white rooms so I came up with this visual representation years ago to make me more comfortable. I've spent a lot of time in here."
Matyas gave Kyle a confused look, "Well I'm sure he felt he was trying to teach you something. But if you're stable enough to be in here then there shouldn't be a problem. Restructuring the mind in the right way should only take about three to four days to settle. If it's been longer then that then you should be safe."
"It's been almost four days. I trust you, but I'd at least like to have Cyna's okay too. Your Dad won't be mad at me as much if Cyna said it's okay too."
"Fair enough," said Matyas. "Hey Pop, you hanging around somewhere close?"
Cyna suddenly appeared in a nearby leather chair with a big grin and fire engine red hair, "You called?"
"Nice hair," giggled Matyas. "But yeah, Kyle wants to make sure its okay for him to use the IIM for what it was made for."
Cyna nodded his head, "It was probably a good idea to check. You're stable enough at this point Kyle so feel free to use the IIM, just for now make sure you always have another Founder with you when you do until Tyne gets a chance to teach you more about it. But for now you can use it, if Tyne has a problem with it I'll tell him I said it was okay."
Kyle nodded. "Thanks Cyna. You know; I just thought of something. When you go talk to Tyne why don't you go with your natural hair color? He's got so used to the kewl ones if you try it might put him in shock to see it back to normal! I do agree with Cory on one thing though; you really need to check into adding sparkles. That would be even more kewler!"
"But I like my crazy colors," Cyna said in a very sad tone. "I don't want to have plain, old brown hair. That's boring! I'll think about the sparkles though."
"I...I think I'm caught up with history now but..." Matyas looked like he was going to cry. "Why are we awake if the world isn't ready yet. There's so much still wrong."
"Review the video from what your father said when he first woke up," said Cyna. "It's limited video because Ark was in stand by but it should have the answers that you're looking for."
A few seconds later Matyas sighed, "Well this just sucks, we have a lot of work to do. At least I get to meet my cousin and both of my fathers."
Kyle took Mat's hand. "Nyo put it best cuz. We might not be at the point that you expected, but we are at a point that what you know will make it possible to get back to what you used to have before things went bad. I think you guys got lucky the first time; somehow nobody's duplicated that yet."
"Probably because humanity is unwilling to conform," said Matyas. "Humanity used to be willing to give up smaller things to make everything better as a whole. But with everyone wanting something different and acting unwilling to give up anything for the greater good it all falls apart very quickly. So, on a lighter note though, are you ready to learn Founder?"
"YEAH!" Kyle giggled. "Sometime soon I hope I can teach you Eagle and Dog and Vulcan and Spanish and ...."
"Okay, okay, okay, let's start with you first," interrupted Matyas. "I already picked up English and for some reason Ark also told me to pick up Russian too. I can learn more later, lets just get you Founder. I mean, a Founder that doesn't know his peoples own language is just...weird. Let's make you not weird but crazy instead. Let me know when you're ready and I'll walk you though picking it up."
"I'm ready, but JJ says I'm already crazy so that should be easy!" Kyle giggled.
Matyas got behind Kyle, placed his hands on Kyle's shoulders, and spoke softly into his ear, "Now I want you to relax. Just listen to the sound of my voice, let it be the only thing your mind hears right now. I want you to open your mind and ask yourself for the language you want, ask as if you already know it, like it's already there. Find it and let it fill your mind, hear the words in your head and remember that you already know the language. Go slowly, take your time, I'm here if you get lost."
Kyle became serious as he closed his eyes and followed Mat's instructions.
Matyas grinned, "Now, I want you to tell me what your most ticklish spot is."
"No way!" Kyle giggled. "Cousins don't touch each other there!"
"Hmmm, I'll just have to go for the normal spots then," replied Matyas as he reached under Kyle's arms and began to tickle him. "You just replied to a question I asked in Founder with Founder!"
"HEY!" Kyle exclaimed as he tucked his arms in tight and tried to return the tickling. "No fair; you got longer arms!"
Matyas smiled, and finally let up, "So was it really that hard to learn Founder?"
Kyle smiled and wrapped his arms around Matyas. "No, that was kewl. Thanks cuz."
"Well if there is ever anything you want to learn that Ark has stored in it's archive this is one of the fastest, and for a Founder, best ways to learn it," said Matyas. "You can't over fill your mind with too much information, but just be careful because you can give yourself a headache if you do too much at once. Is there anything else you wanted to learn while we're here or can we give one of the other guys a go so they can catch up and learn English."
Kyle tilted his head. "I kinda would like to know more about my ancestors -- you know, your Pop and his family. I don't really know much about my blood family; I've kinda got an itch in my head that feels like the guy I called my father really wasn't related to me. I might look at the past sometime to see, if Tyne says it's okay."
"That's not a bad thing to look into," Matyas said in agreement. "It's good to know your family, but you might not have a complete line to follow, I'm sure Ark hasn't been able to track Founder tags for a while now. It just knows your tag well and can connect you to the right family. Maybe later we can try and put those missing pieces together for you though if you really want them. We might find that you have more family then you realize out there. We'll run it by Dad later."
"Okay. Make sure you're petting his Fuzzymore when you ask him though!" Kyle smiled.
"Ummm, he's my Dad...I don't think I want to pet his Fuzzymore..." Matyas said with a strange look.
< He is talking about a Phasenmorph, I made sure you know about them when you asked for what you missed. He and the rest of his clan just insist on saying it wrong. >
"So if I did this," said Matyas as he took Kyle's arm and began petting the Phasenmorph. "You'll be in a better mood?"
Kyle melted into Matyas' chest as he purred "ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhh....."
"Hey Pop, if petting this thing does this then when you tell Dad about me maybe you should have someone petting his," suggested Matyas.
Cyna nodded, "That's not a bad idea, maybe I'll ask Rusty to help."
"Rusty?" Matyas said curiously.
"He's your Dad's new boyfriend," said Cyna. "He's a really nice guy."
Matyas frowned, "But he's married to you."
"Mat, I'm dead," replied Cyna. "I have been for some time, you know that."
"Don't worry about it Mat, you'll like him," said Cyna.
Kyle squeezed Mat's hand. "Give him a chance Matyas; please? I promise he's not trying to replace Cyna; in fact he insisted that Cyna remain a part of Tyne's life and remain involved in everything that happens. I think he loves Cyna just as much as your Dad does too; I know he's trying to figure out ways that Cyna can be involved in Tyne's life as much as possible."
"Okay," Matyas said very quietly.
Cyna came over and pulled Matyas into a hug, "Your Dad's not forgetting about me or abandoning me, and Rusty is making sure of that too. Besides, your Dad still loves me just as much as I love him."
Matyas smiled, "Okay Pop. We should probably go now though; have fun with Javyk and Rylan, they're the next two." Matyas let go of Cyna and then quickly pulled Kyle into a tight hug, "You ready to get out Kyle?"
"Yeah, let's go Cuz! We can help your Pop figure out how to tackle your Dad."
~~~Meanwhile at the Beach outside of the AI Compound~~~
Josiah looked back at his work and smiled, "There, a sand castle!"
Dominic looked at Josiah and then back at the giant, life-size castle that was now sitting halfway in the water along the beach made out of sand. "Well...I've never built one before but somehow I think they're supposed to be smaller."
"This is awesome!" Dmitry shouted from the top of the castle.
"That's KEWL!!" Timmy exclaimed as he ducked into a doorway.
"They like it though," said Josiah.
"Then you definitely made it too big," grinned Dominic. "I always thought that when in water a sand castle would have trouble holding together."
"Naw, that's no problem for me," replied Josiah. "This is actually very relaxing; this is the most stress I've relieved in...a very long time."
"I think I can get used to you relieving stress cutie." Gavin said as he leaned over and kissed Josiah's cheek.
Just then Paul peeked over the top. "Uncle Josiah; you forgot bathrooms! I gotta pee!"
"Sorry, I can't do bathrooms Paul; you'll have to run inside the house for that!" Josiah called back.
"So now what do we do with it?" Tyne asked as he went through the castle's front gate.
"Use your imagination! Here I'll give ya a dragon too," said Josiah as he tilted his head and a dragon made of sand practically burst out of the water. Then he picked up a stick and handed it to Tyne, "Here, use that as a sword, now go slay the dragon. I'll make it worth your while too." Josiah grinned as Rusty suddenly went flying through the air and landed in the dragon's mouth. "There, go save him."
Tyne giggled as he ran off to 'kill' the dragon, "I'm coming Rusty!"
"Help me!" Rusty exclaimed in an overly dramatic voice between giggles. "The evil dragon has caught me!"
Timmy and Paul stood fascinated on top of the castle watching the scenes unfolding in front of them. "WOW!"
A few hours later the dragon had been killed, which resulted in Tyne pulling Rusty off to the side for his reward for rescuing him, and Josiah was doing one last check to make sure everyone was out of the sand castle. As soon as he was sure it was empty he sighed and let the castle collapse.
"It's too bad I made it that big," said Josiah. "If I wasn't worried about leaving something that large here on the beach I could have just turned the sand to glass."
"No way! You coulda done that?" Jerry asked in awe.
"Sure, it wouldn't have been that hard," replied Josiah. "I mean sand is really close to glass anyway, so it would just be a matter of adding more heat. Could have kept it there for a long time that way."
Jerry frantically dug around in his pocket, and pulled out a wrinkled picture. "Could you make one like that for me? A little version; that's the first castle me, Marc, and Danny built."
Josiah looked at the picture and as he studied it the sand at his feet began to start forming. A few seconds later he looked down to find a smaller glass version of the sand castle from the picture as well as small figures around it that resembled Jerry, Marc, and Danny. Josiah smiled, "Will that work?"
"Oh my Gawd! That's AWESOME!" Jerry exclaimed as he wrapped his arms around Josiah. "You're the GREATEST!"
"That's what Gavin keeps telling me," grinned Josiah. "I'm glad I could help."
Jerry glanced around until he spotted KC trying to avoid getting buried in the sand by Austin and Joey. "KC, Austin, Joey! Come here!" he yelled.
The three boys came running over; KC shaking sand out of his hair. "Wazzup Doc?" KC asked as they skidded to a stop.
Jerry pointed at the glass figurines and castle. "Josiah made that for me; it's just like the one that I made with Marc and Danny. Could you help me get it over to my house? I wanna surprise Marc and Danny with it later, and I don't want it to get broke."
"Dhad's awesome!" Joey said as he stared at the little model. "Id's pweddy!"
Josiah rustled Joey's hair, "Well anything that has your Daddy in it is gonna be pretty, don't ya think?"
"Uh huh; he's a cude Daddy!" Joey responded with a big smile.
"Hey Jerry; is that a sunburn or are you blushing?" Austin giggled. "C'mon KC; let's get this inside before Dad sees it!"
"Ok." Jerry replied before the boys flanked him to hide the small castle from view. "Thanks Josiah, this is soooo sweet!" Jerry added as they rushed towards the house.
"Hey Josiah," Tyne called as he walked over carrying Rusty. "We're going to head back to the Ark Compound for the night. Will you watch after the rest of our guys and get them back later?"
Josiah watched Jerry, Joey, KC, and Austin carefully run off before he turned to Tyne and giggled, "Running off to swap more spit huh? Yeah sure I'll watch everyone. We'll be back before it gets too late, with all the sun and swimming everyone's done I'm sure they won't last too much longer. Well I hope they won't because I know I won't."
"Just ask Dominic for help if ya need it," said Rusty as he started to nibble on Tyne's ear.
Josiah just grinned and shook his head, "We'll be fine, go already."
"Thanks Josiah," said Tyne as both he and Rusty disappeared.
As soon as they were gone Josiah quickly found where Gavin was and went over to join him.
"Let me guess; Tyne took off to make up for all of that time he was asleep?" Gavin giggled as he reached over and started playing with Josiah's nipples.
"Ohhhh, I like that," Josiah slurred as he leaned into Gavin. "D-D-Don't stooop..."
"Your wish is my command!" Gavin whispered into Josiah's ear before beginning to gently nibble on it.
Tyne and Rusty appeared in the middle of the system control in the Ark Compound.
"Ummm...well I was kind of hoping you would take us right to the bedroom Ark," said Tyne.
Cyna appeared at the console that they were closest to and gave them a half grin, "I asked Ark to bring you here Tyne. We need to talk about something."
"Really important or can it wait?" asked Tyne.
Cyna sighed, "It's really important. I'm sure you're eager to get to bed but this has to be covered now...something has come up you see."
Rusty tilted his head. "What's wrong Cyna?"
"Well there's something I didn't tell Tyne and I keep putting it off..." Cyna started to explain.
"Your program isn't falling apart or something is it?" Tyne said in a very worried tone.
"No, I'm fine," replied Cyna. "It's something that I was going to tell you when I was alive but I never got a chance to...and after you brought me back I didn't think you could handle it."
"Okay..." Tyne said still looking worried.
Rusty took Tyne's hand and gave it a squeeze. "It's not anything bad is it Cyna?"
"No, I don't think it is," Cyna said carefully. "It was meant to be a surprise for you Tyne...your father even helped me get it approved."
Tyne's eyes got as big as saucers, "What did you do? I mean there's a limited number of things that my father would have had to help you with."
"I...I don't really know how to say this..." Cyna said nervously. "We have a son."
Tyne's mouth dropped open in shock.
"His name is Matyas, he's 12," Cyna continued. "I wasn't going to tell you because I didn't want to upset you but the Council had him and a few others put into cyro-sleep about twelve years after you as part of a different project. They were woken up today..."
"W...we have a son?" Tyne said slowly as he let the information sink in.
Just then Matyas, Kyle, Tyler, and the other Founder boys came into the room talking about bringing the lower level back online and making it functional again. When Matyas saw Tyne, though, he stopped and smiled.
"Is...is that him?" Tyne said softly.
Cyna nodded, "Yes."
"He's beautiful..." whispered Tyne as he stared at Matyas, unable to move.
Rusty squeezed Tyne's hand then let go. "Go on, go meet your son." Rusty said loud enough for everyone to hear.
"Guio guiryeet iourry Abbas Matyas." Kyle said as he placed a hand on Matyas' shoulder and guided him towards Tyne.
Matyas stopped in front of Tyne and the two just stared at each other. Finally, after about a minute Tyne smiled and spoke, "You look so much like Cyna."
Matyas grinned, "Grandma used to say that I looked like you. She accused me of acting like you too."
"Shara said that about you?" said Tyne. "That sounds like something she'd say, she always said I was good looking but too wild."
"You're not mad at Pop because of me are you?" Matyas asked timidly.
"No Mat, I'm not mad," replied Tyne. "I'm a little shocked, but I'm not mad."
Matyas finally couldn't take it anymore so he quickly closed the distance between them and threw his arms around Tyne, hugging him as tight as he could. Tyne smiled and returned the hug.