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Koako

Project B

A little story I got into writing last week. I like it so far, what do you guys think?

Scott tapped his fingers annoyingly, his other hand running through his jet black hair. He cast around his brown eyes, surveying the room around him. Dark blue walls surrounded him to meet a shaggy purple carpet. Two oak doors led out of the room, a lack of windows leaving the walls barren. Scott’s mind wandered, jumping between the dark black chair he was seated upon and whether or not he had remembered to feed the dog. He looked up at the compact black desk across from him, young woman was seated behind it. Her hair wrapped in a tight bun, thick glasses sat upon a sharp nose, her gaze unwavering from her thin black computer monitor as her hands flew across her keyboard, a flurry of movement barely visible to the human eye.
Scott coughed, his eyes trained on the secretary’s face. She looked up for a moment, annoyed by Scott’s cry for attention. She shook her head, mumbling an insult under her breath. Time crawled by, silence hung over the room, the beat of Scott’s fingers slowly quickening. He looked down at his watch, annoyed.
“Erm, Miss? How much longer do you think-”
“The boss will see you when he is ready.” The secretary said crossly, her black eyes staring Scott down into his seat, before returning to her monitor.
“Well, it’s just that it’s taking-”
“Mr.Armandi will see you now.” The secretary said, her eyes remaining on the monitor.
Scott hesitated, his mind unbelieving of the secretary’s words.
“Mr.Armandi, will see you now.” The secretary repeated, a hint of annoyance in her voice. Scott didn’t wait to be told twice, he leapt out of his seat, rushing through the door beside the secretary.

“So, you’re the one?” Mr.Armandi said smoothly, his voice had a strange hollow sound to it. Scott was surprised, he suspected to see a fat, greedy man. What met his eyes was the complete opposite. A man, no older than thirty, was seated, legs crossed behind a black desk. He was dressed head to toe in a black suit, his white tie neatly blending in with his pale skin. Thick black hair was gelled back, giving his thin bony face a regal look. The office was lined with various paintings, barely any of the jet black wall behind showed beneath the frames. They were mostly paintings of the countryside, rolling hills, grassy plains, all except for one portrait of a man who resembled Mr.Armandi, but much, much older.
“Hah, shocked, are you? They always are. Allow me to introduce myself, I am Giovanni Armandi,” he began, “As you probably know, I am the head of the Bioshock company, the world’s leading manufacturer of Biostem.
“You are here, because out of the millions of requests we get each day, you have been selected to receive special injection.”
“Yeah, I looked through the pamphlet, and-”
“Shhh! There’s more.” Mr.Armandi silenced Scott, “As you know, Biostem has become an integral part of our lives. People use it to stay healthy, to gain strength, even to perform superhuman feats. Our whole society has become dependant on biostem, firefighters can produce water, chefs are able to create food from thin air, and workers in grocery stores can control shopping carts.
“You, have been selected to join the special taskforce that enforces justice in this world, people who have been injected with Biostem, which gives them amazing, limitless powers. You may know Dynamo, the invincible man, he was the first subject of Project B, Bioshock’s project to protect the Earth’s citizens.
Now, have you selected which power you want?”



Scott flexed his hand. It didn’t feel any different. He lifted his arm, his eyes resting on the small red mark where the Biostem had been injected.
“Can you feel it working?” Mr.Armandi’s voice called out. Scott looked over to the viewing deck. Mr.Armandi was surrounded by men in lab coats, several of them holding clipboards. Mr.Armandi knocked on the bullet-proof glass between him and Scott, he leaned towards the microphone,
“Scott? Do you feel anything?”
”Ummmm, no?”
“Good, you’re not supposed to. If you do, the Biostem is faulty, and you die.”
“WHAT? I think I feel tingling, or something, or-“
”That’s paranoia. Now, proceed with the test.”
“Right.” Scott closed his eyes, and began to focus. He envisioned the grey room he was standing in, and the silver metal box in front of him that was his objective. He found his mental core, focusing its energies. He concentrated, focusing his energies. He almost had it, he could feel the energies moving though his arms, he could feel it focusing, he could-
Scott thrust his hands forward, releasing the energy. He held his position, waiting.
“Scott?” Mr.Armandi’s voice rattled metallically from the speakers.
“Did…did I do it?” Scott’s said, his voice full of anticipation.
“Sadly, no. Try again.”
“WHAT?” Scott exclaimed, his eyes shot open. “But…I felt it! And everything!”
“Don’t worry, no one’s power works on the first shot. Now try again.”
“All right…” Scott trailed off, closing his eyes once more. He concentrated again, trying to focus the power to his hands.
“You’re doing great!” Mr.Armandi’s voice echoed in the background, Scott tried to block him out, tried to block everything out. He needed full concentration. He focused, bringing the energy forward. He reached back, grasping an invisible ball, the thrust his hands forward.
There was silence. Scott slowly opened his eyes, expecting a miracle.
“Nothing again? Strange. Most people get it by now…” Mr.Armandi thought out loud, “Maybe….maybe you’re trying to hard. Try….um….trying less.”
“What??!! You think “trying less” Is going to help? I’m bloody trying to-“ WHAM! Scott clutched his ears as a loud metallic sound the volume of a gunshot echoed through the room.
“The hell was that!” he demanded, looking up at Mr.Armandi.
“You….you…” Scott turned his head, revealing to him a very large hole in the wall, in front of where the silver box used to be.
“Sweet Jesus!” Mr.Armandi finally exclaimed “Those walls can take explosions that level cities! How in HELL did you manage to do that?”
Scott was speechless, he walked over to the recently created hole in the wall, running his hands over the jagged edges.
“Scott? Is everything all right?”
Scott lifted his arms, examining his hands.
“I…did…that?” He muttered, a cold chill crawled through his body
“Scott? Are you all right? Did you-“ Mr.Armandi stopped short as Scott fell back, unconscious.



Scott examined his arm. It didn’t look any different. He flexed it, shaking out his hands, bending his fingers, nothing.
It had been 2 days since the Biostem injection; Mr.Armandi had decided to give Scott a week to “get used to his powers”. So far, it proved to be erratic, Scott could barely control his powers. So far, he had decimated two chairs, three tables and reduced every dish in his apartment to dust. He had gone from trying to perform normal tasks, to sitting on his bed hoping he didn’t break anything.
So far it was working.
Scott looked around the mid size, two bedroom apartment; clothes littered the floor, bits of furniture yet to be thrown out was piled in the corner, and a very large hole in the wall revealed the disaster area that was the kitchen.
Scott shut his eyes, trying to calm himself down. Mr.Armandi promised to reimburse him for anything his powers broke. He would just go to Ikea and buy brand new furniture. Everything would be fine.
Scott’s eyes shot open, who was he kidding, the walls were probably damaged enough to cause the ceiling to collapse. Panic washed over him, his mind thrashed with the idea of death, fear erupting in his stomach. The bedside table exploded, the light fixtures vibrating rapidly, someone in the hall yelled “MY HAM EXPLODED!”
Scott began hurtling towards the door in fear, his eyes never leaving the ceiling. He swore he could see cracks forming, every little thing in the room began to jump out at him, shadows held fragments of furniture like spears, the shade of dark green on the walls began to close in menacingly. Scott’s hand flew to the doorknob, then stopped.
“Calm, calm” He thought, trying to slow his racing heart. “Everything’s fine, I’m not going to die. I’m not going die.” He repeated the thought over and over, every time a growing calmer, every time a crack in the ceiling revealed to be a cruel trick of the light.
Scott turned, facing the cluttered living room. He tried to remain calm, but fear loomed over him. Slowly, he reached out, his arm shaking. He faced an open palm towards the tv remote on the other side of the room. He stretched out his will, mentally grasping the remote.
It moved.
A cold sweat broke across Scott’s forehead, his fingertips numb with adrenaline. He closed his eyes, willing the remote to come to him. He tried to block out the thoughts of walls collapsing, tried to concentrate on the remote. Scott’s arm began to shake; his breathing became erratic. Scott was sure something was going to explode any second, maybe the sofa was going to break, or a gas line sever.
But Scott’s fear was met only by a small bump on his hand. Scott cautiously opened one eye, expecting a disaster. But his heart leapt when he saw the remote, hovering in front of his outstretched hand. He did it.




The rest of the week passed in a flash. Scott had begun to grow more confident with his new ability; the sound of breaking furniture grew less common in Scott’s apartment, and he had gone 3 days without putting a new hole in the wall.
But his time was up, and Scott had to return to the Bioshock institute. The receptionist didn’t even look at him, but allowed him to pass to Mr.Armandi’s office. Scott slipped past the thick oaken door, and was greeted by the knowing, cold stare of Giovanni Armandi.
“Greetings Scott, have you had a pleasant week?” Mr.Armandi’s voice was polite, yet carried that same hollow tone to it.
“Great, I’m getting used to the whole…power thing.” Scott replied, flexing his hand out in front of him.
“Wonderful,” Mr.Armandi rose out of his high backed leather chair. He moving across his office to remove a painting of a lone barn on a hilltop, revealing a panel lined with buttons and dials. “I hope you are confident enough with your new abilities to perform basic tasks, without repeating last week’s catastrophe.”
Mr.Armandi tapped the control panel, adjusted the dials, then pressed his palm against the panel. The wall seemed to split into blocks, each collapsing into another, until finally the wall had disappeared. What lay behind it was not, as Scott suspected, the waiting room, but a space the size of a gymnasium. The walls were black, lined with green criss-crossing lines, reminding Scott of what people often portrayed cyberspace as.
“Amazing.” Scott muttered, walking into the room. He reached out, the walls were smooth, and had a texture like no other.
“This is the training room Scott, a place where you can learn to specialize your powers in the ways of combat, stealth, and everything else essential to surviving while on duty. In a matter of moments, the training room will form an obstacle course specialized to train you in strategies of using your power to overcome challenges in the environment and your surroundings.” Mr.Armandi’s voice echoed behind him.
“Wait, so I just-”
“Go.”
Immediately, the opening through which Scott had passed through closed, the wall assuming the same black and green pattern as the rest of the room. A labyrinth of walls rose up from the floors before Scott, solid black walls that towered above him. He swore they were at least four times his height. Scott paced cautiously down a hall shaped by the newly formed walls. He seemed to walk for an eternity, until he turned a corner, and was confronted by a dead end. But something was strange, the wall in front of him had flashing blue arrows pointing up, and was only half the size of it’s brethren.
“Here’s where you have to use your imagination,” Mr.Armandi’s voice boomed from the ceiling, “Get over the wall, and continue along the obstacle course.”
Scott gulped, looking up at the wall.
“Okay, I want to be up there. I need to be up there, so…..what now.” He thought uselessly. He felt the wall for any grooves he could climb up, anything that could help him.
“It’s never that easy, Scott. Your powers are nigh limitless, use that to your advantage. What will you do?” Mr.Armandi shot down Scott’s first attempt with an all-seeing eye.
Scott cursed under his breath, backing up. How could he get across the wall? He probably couldn’t knock it down, or use anything to help him up.
Then a thought struck him.
A crazy, painful thought, that could only lead to disaster.
Hesitantly, Scott looked down, and concentrated…on his legs. Scott slowly, carefully, used his powers to lift his legs into the air, which, in turn, lifted him up.
His ascent was slow, small pains shooting up his waist. It was as if he was standing on an invisible escalator, slowly heading to the top of the wall.
He was halfway there, when a jet of pain shot through Scott’s leg, breaking his concentration, he flipped, arms flailing. He was growing painfully aware that he was hanging upside down by his right leg, the muscles in his left cramping up painfully.
Scott tried not to panic, to keep his head, but the hard floor beneath him was taunting him, daring him to fall.
Scott craned his head to see as far up as he could. The top of the wall was almost an armlength away. Pushing away the thoughts of pain and panic, he continued to lift himself towards the top, still upside down.
Scott positioned himself so that the top of the wall was directly below him, then relaxed his mind, collapsing down onto the wall. He lay there, his hands numb with adrenaline, his legs aching in pain.
“You….you lifted yourself up by the legs?” Mr.Armandi’s usually calm voice sounded surprised, “Usually people with your power lift their whole body. You’re the first one who’s ever done that, how…unusual.”
“Never thought of that.” Scott sat up, and dropped down to the floor below, using his mind to slow his descent. A glowing orb hovered in the air before him, a ball of light signifying his success.
“Very good Scott,” Mr.Armandi’s voice had resumed it’s usual detachedness, “That is an achievement orb, it tells you when you have completed an obstacle. Now,I think that’s enough for today. Unless you wish to continue….”
Scott limped away from the wall, heading deeper into the labrynth of walls,
“I can take it.” He growled.
“Very well, proceed on until you reach the next obstacle.”
Scott trudged on, down the dark hallway, until he reached another dead end. But this one was different; there was no half-sized wall, nothing different at all, just a wall blocking his path.
“Look up, Scott.” Mr.Armandi’s voice guided Scott, who looked up, to spot a small, diamond shaped hole in the ceiling above. He could faintly see a room through the hole, with the same black and green walls as the one he was in now. “This requires a bit more imagination Scott. Good luck.”
Scott stared up at the hole. The small diamond looked as if it was kilometres away, how would he ever each it?
“Hell no!” He exclaimed as he considered lifting himself up again. The walls had their usual smooth, unhelpful texture, preventing any use of them. He racked his brain for a solution, what could help?”
“This is new as well; previous testers said they had a ton of ideas how to overcome this obstacle, but it appears that you are stumped. Yet again you prove your uniqueness, Scott.” Mr.Armandi’s calm voice was beginning to annoy Scott, but he had given Scott an idea.
He aimed his hands towards the ground, concentrating. He focused his mental energies in his hands, then, as sudden as lightning, he released the energy in a strong downward burst.
As much as he had expected it, the result of this burst still caught Scott off guard. He soared into the air like a bullet, his ears popping with the sudden change of altitude. He looked down at the rapidly shrinking ground beneath him, his eyes widening at just how high his burst had brought him. He looked up, the gap in the ceiling was getting closer now, but something was wrong. The wind blowing across his face grew less powerful, his progress to the ceiling seemed to get slower and slower, then it hit him.
He need to go higher. Scott turned around, disorienting himself. He fumbled with his hands, pointing them at the ground. But his turn had left him spinning, by the time he released the burst of energy, his hands a swung up, facing the wall in front of him.
Scott shot back, slamming his back against the wall behind him. Pain once again shot through his body, as he slid down the wall towards the floor below. Scott mustered the last of his strength to slow down, using the friction against the wall to his advantage. He eventually slid down to a halt at the bottom, his aching frame lying against the wall.
“Do you require medical attention, Scott?” Mr.Armandi said casually, as if he had just seen a bird fly past.
“No, I don’t need any bloody medical attention! I just slammed into a wall at high speed and feel down a couple hundred meters! Everything’s fine and dandy!” Scott screamed angrily, his chest giving a few heaves of pain with each word.
“Of course, Biostem injections not only perform their specific function, but certain components of the Biostem greatly enhances your body’s physical limits. That fall would have killed any normal man.” Mr.Armandi explained.
“Wait, what?” Scott’s voiced had calmed, his eyes shone with an inquisitive look.
“Your resilience, recovery rate, and strength have been moderately increased by the injection. Still nothing compared to an injection specializing in those areas, but an increase none the less. I wouldn’t be surprised if you could get up and run a marathon in a matter of minutes, even with that nasty fall.” Scott sat, speechless, his mind trying to absorb Mr.Armandi’s words. It wasn’t the most shocking of things, but it came as a surprise all the same. Scott got up, the pain had lessened greatly since he had come crashing down.
“Wow….that’s….AWESOME!” Scott cried out, he fired his hands towards the ground once more, and within seconds Scott was hurtling into the air. He felt his descent slow once again, but he was prepared this time. Adrenaline flooding his veins, he kept his hands pointed downward, and released a second blast. Scott shot through the hole in the wall. The room he entered was big, like the previous one, with the achievement orb on the far end of the room, hovering atop a small raised platform.
Scott reached the pinnacle of his rise, and was met by the blaring of sirens, as a platform lined with spikes fell towards him from the ceiling above.
Scott twised 180 degrees. He faced the wall opposite of the achievement orb, reached out with his arms, and shot back, away from the danger of the falling platform, and straight towards the orb.
Scott turned again, facing the orb. He was heading straight for it. He spread his arms and legs into a spread eagle position, as it to catch the torso-sized globe. He sped towards it, but all his momentum died as he passed though the glowing orb, and he fell, face first, into the office of a clapping Giovanni Armandi.
“Very good Scott!” Mr.Armandi sounded surprised, “Out of all the past heroes, that was the most amazing performance I have ever seen. Top notch, if you ask me.”
“Wha? What happened?” Scott slowly picked himself up off the floor, truding across the room to slump down into the chair in front of Mr.Armandi’s desk.
“The orb you passed through was the doorway back to my office. You have completed today’s training, with rather surprising results, I might add.” Mr.Armandi turned his back to Scott, and began to pour a glass of water.
“But that wasn’t the entrance to the training room, how could it’ve brought me here?”
“Because, Scott, the training room is only the size of a small closet,” Mr.Armandi handed Scott the water, then pushed open the wall to the training room, revealing a space much smaller than Scott had expected. “The training room is virtual reality. That’s how we can have such a large area in a building such as ours.”
“Sure felt real.” Scott said, his hand moving towards his back.
“The mind makes it real. A setback to having a power like yours, but if your actions may lead to fatal results, you are pulled out of the room immediately.” Mr.Armandi explained.
“Magical. When do you want me back?” Scott said doggedly.
“This Friday, 5 days from now. You have proved to be quite adept at obstacle courses, we’ll skip ahead and move on to combat training.” Scott’s head shot forward in surprise, spewing water across the carpet.
“Augh, sorry! But combat? Really? So soon?” Scott blurted, wiping his mouth with is sleeve.
“Yes. Do you require further time to rest? Perhaps you would like to become more acquainted with overcoming obstacles?” Mr.Armandi surveyed the carpet, his piercing eyes moved up and down, examining the newly formed wet area.
“No, no, combat is good. It’s just…I always knew that it would come to that, but it never really seemed….” Scott drifted off, his mind searching for the right word.
“Real? Do not worry Scott, I am sure that you will find combat to be quite simple. Until we meet again?” Mr.Armandi reached out his hand, his pale skin gleaming in the light.
“’Till next week.” Scott stood out of the chair, shaking Mr.Armandi’s hand.
The Carpet was dry.






And that's all I got so far! Hope you enjoyed it!
Majin Luigi

Indeed, an impressive display of abilities.
Nothing to my power of course, but impressive nonetheless.
Captain Gamer

I'm also intrigued! Then again, unexplained or induced power gain has always been a favored subject of mine. I even like the way Scott messes up, or gets stumped along the way instead of a protagonist's intuition getting him through without a scratch.

I'd love to say more, but sadly, this is only an introduction, so I can only express eagerness when an actual plot that transcends episode-driven events arrives!

Oh, and Majin Luigi, I love your enthusiasm, but there's times and places for boasting and otherwise drawing attention to oneself.
Majin Luigi

Fine, fine, you've made your point, "stop using such blatant self-promotion."
But it is still an excellent story.
Koako

Since I kinda left off in the middle of a conversation, I've written the end of that little "chapter" Razz It's not much, but enjoy anyways!

“Magical. When do you want me back?” Scott said doggedly.
“This Friday, 5 days from now. You have proved to be quite adept at obstacle courses, we’ll skip ahead and move on to combat training.” Scott’s head shot forward in surprise, spewing water across the carpet.
“Augh, sorry! But combat? Really? So soon?” Scott blurted, wiping his mouth with is sleeve.
“Yes. Do you require further time to rest? Perhaps you would like to become more acquainted with overcoming obstacles?” Mr.Armandi surveyed the carpet, his piercing eyes moved up and down, examining the newly formed wet area.
“No, no, combat is good. It’s just…I always knew that it would come to that, but it never really seemed….” Scott drifted off, his mind searching for the right word.
“Real? Do not worry Scott, I am sure that you will find combat to be quite simple. Until we meet again?” Mr.Armandi reached out his hand, his pale skin gleaming in the light.
“’Till next week.” Scott stood out of the chair, shaking Mr.Armandi’s hand.
The Carpet was dry.

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