Story: Fears and Favors (chapter 12)

Authors: A Markov

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Chapter 12

Title: The Other End has Teeth

Shego woke up in pain.  Both of her shoulders felt like they were on fire and her arms were numb from the elbows down.  Her neck was kinked and a muscle at the base of her skull was in spasm.  Her face was against something cold and hard.  She tried to sit up but something pulled on her arms and her feet were stuck.  Suddenly, she was fully awake.  Her eyes snapped open and a quick test of her limbs let her know that her fears were reality.  She was hogtied and laying on a concrete floor. Her arms were pulled behind her and, as near as she could tell, her elbows were touching.  She felt something odd brushing her ankles and after a few moments figured out that it was her numb fingers.  Her legs were bound together all the way up to her thighs. As she assessed her predicament, the uppermost thought in her mind was: That old man is going to suffer for this.

She was able to move her head a little.  She looked around as much as she could and discovered that she was in a cell.  Her limited view included a heavy door with a very small window, some plumbing that was probably for a wash basin and the leg of a cot.  She managed to twist and scoot herself in a complete circle on the floor. The cell had no window but there was a commode.  The cot had no mattress. She was alone.  Gingerly she began testing her bonds. Slow pressure caused them to dig into her flesh, and while she still couldn’t feel her hands, she did feel something dripping from her ankles and she guessed that it was blood.  Another round of painful scooting confirmed a few drops of blood on the floor, smeared by her body.

Her bonds were probably metal, anything else would have stretched or snapped.  And they had to be wires of some kind, to cut into her like that.  She lit her hands and concentrated the heat of her plasma into her wrists in an attempt to melt the bonds but the heat was instantly transmitted throughout her body. She let out an involuntary scream of anguish as she felt intense burning heat in her armpits, around her breasts and on the soles of her feet. The heat did not dissipate immediately when she shut down her plasma either.  She began thrashing around and cursing her captors, Senior, the world in general and the inventor of the wires with which she was bound.  The sound of the door being unlocked penetrated through her anger.  She struggled to move around to where she could see her jailer.

“Hello, Shego.” two simple words, spoken in an even tone of voice but dripping with menace. Shego felt her stomach sink and fear gripped her. “What…?” her captor continued in mock astonishment. “No snide remarks? No, glib sarcasm? Surely you must have a derisive epitaph you wish to share.”  A pair of well-polished, pointy black boots moved into Shego’s view and stopped about a foot from her face.  Craning her neck, she was able to look up into the face of her captor.  The sinister grin on the young woman’s face was cold and threatening. “I want you to understand that I have no interest in your fate.  I don’t care if you’re guilty. I don’t care if you’re innocent. I don’t care if you go to trial. I don’t care if you live or die.  I. Don’t. Care.”

The brunette crouched down until her butt nearly touched the floor and brought her face close to Shego’s.  “You see, I’m going fishing for red heads,” she said in a chillingly offhanded voice, “and you’re my bait.”

Shego glared at the woman and snarled, “I don’t think so!” She lit her hands full force and put all of her strength into breaking her bonds. The burning pain spread throughout her body but she ignored it and fought even harder, channeling all of her pain into rage. The intense pain only made her more determined, but no matter how willing the spirit, the body can only take so much and after three and a half minutes of hell, the pain overcame her and she passed out.

The woman sniffed reflectively and prodded the unconscious form with the toe of her boot.  “Impressive,” she said to someone just beyond the doorway. “Replace her bonds and test them to see if that display weakened them at all. And make sure all of the heat conducting cables we coiled around her are still intact and in place, we wouldn’t want to deprive her of one millimeter of sensation the next time she lights up.”

“You really think she’ll do it again, after that?”

“I’m counting on it.” Lisa Chairman said as she exited the small cell.


“So, you can see that the biological agent was designed on this system.  There isn’t enough computing power for it to extrapolate the entire organism with so little information unless it had a model for it already in its memory.”

“I’m gonna take your word for that, Mr. Load.” Agent Thomas leaned back in his chair and fumbled for another cigarette. “This severely limits the number of people who can be trusted.”

“How many people do you think we can trust?”

“Counting you and me? Two.”

“I think I can improve on that.”


“Look, all I’m saying is that if Ron dyes his hair brown and ditches the pleather pants, no one will recognize him.  The only picture they have of you is a m-m-mo-” Bonnie tried to contain herself; she managed to choke out “m-m-monkey!” before dissolving into laughter. Kim just stood there, fuming silently.

“Guess it all works out, eh, KP?” Ron put in, trying to cheer her up. “If you had taken a good picture that year, everyone would be able to recognize-”

“Not if she was wearing that green dress!” Bonnie interrupted and went back to laughing.  She was holding her sides and a tear trailed down one side of her face.  Every few moments she would start to collect herself but when she opened her eyes and looked at Kim, it set her off all over again.

“You gotta admit, Kim, that it’s kinda funny that they used that picture.”

“No! Ron, everyone in the world thinks I’m a monkey!” Kim threw her arms up in frustration. Bonnie, who had just wound down started laughing again.  She slipped off of her seat and fell to the ground, but didn’t seem to notice.

“It’s better than being an instantly recognizable international terror-” She was interrupted by a muffled sound.


Kim’s head whipped toward her backpack so swiftly that she almost gave herself whiplash.  “Did you hear that?” She asked Ron in a disbelieving voice.


She lunged for her bag and began strewing its contents around her trying to find the Kimmunicator.  



“Hey, Kim.  No time for questions. I’m transmitting a diagram of the Kimmunicator and some instructions. Use them and call me back.” The transmission ended abruptly.

Kim wasted no time in memorizing the instructions and the diagram.  She’d had to make field repairs and modifications before so this wasn’t anything new.  Judging from the adjustments Wade wanted, she guessed she was changed the operating frequencies for the device. Questions raced through her mind as she worked but she managed to suppress them and concentrate on what she was doing.  Ron, who had nothing to occupy his hands or his mind, asked them all, several times.


Shego woke up in pain. She was still bound in the same manner, but she could feel her arms all the way down to her wrists.  She kept her breathing regular and subtly tested her bonds. They had obviously been changed; perhaps there was a weak point that she could find this time. Her activity was cut short by the voice.

“I know you’re awake, and I know you’re testing your bonds.  I suggest that you do not move suddenly, because there is an I.V. in your left arm.”

“More drugs?” She choked out through her dry mouth.

“No, not drugs, I don’t want to dull the pain you will feel. It contains fluids and nutrients because I want you to be fit enough to endure it.  You see its no fun for me if you pass out every five minutes.”

“You bitch!”

“That’s hardly flattering, and certainly not up to your vaunted wit.”

Shego closed her eyes and braced herself for what was coming. “When I get out of this” she whispered, “I’m going to kill you, again.”  

“Again? Surely you have me confused with someone else.”

“Nah, you’re just another freakin’ clone of that bitch Betty Director.  But since you’re so young, I’m guessing they went the whole route with you, in vitro fertilization, host mother, boarding school, the whole nine yards. And now you’re getting ready to take over the world but Mommy Dearest doesn’t think you’re ready, so you’re going to kill Kim to prove your worth and then maybe mommy will love you.”

“I don’t need her. I’m doing this for me and Uncle Sheldon.”

“What about your mommy?”

“She’s being taken care of already.  She should have paid more attention to what was going on around her, now she’ll pay the price for her arrogance.”

“Still mad at’cher mommy for not carrying you in her womb?” Shego teased the young woman. “Bet they couldn’t find anyone to volunteer, either.” Shego could feel the wires cutting into her arms as she tried to break free. She could feel the small rivulets of blood running down her forearms and dripping off of her elbows.

The young woman pulled out a brochure and began reading. “…new polyfiliment that actually contracts when subjected to axial loads… That means stretched. …holds twenty-eight hundred pounds of impact pressure and thirty-five hundred pounds of steady pressure. Hmmm… able to withstand temperatures of five-thousand degrees Celsius... Impressive stuff.”  She tossed the paper aside and leaned down close to Shego. “The other stuff is what I really like though.  The thick cables wrapped around your body are made from a super heat conductor, developed by the British Space Agency, which has a unique quality.  When you apply heat to one end of the cable, that end stays cool but it instantly transmits all the heat to the other end. They use it to keep things cool in space, move all the heat outside of the space station and things like that.  I’ve found a better use for them, you’ve already experienced it once, and I’m going to make sure you experience it many more times before your girlfriend gets here.”

“We’ll see.” Shego closed her eyes stilled herself. Concentrating, she could feel the thick cables that wound around her body, terminating under her breasts, in her armpits and the bottoms of her feet.  Taking a deep breath and willing her body to obey her, she put all of her energy into heating the thin wires binding her arms and legs, ignoring the burning throughout her body and straining at her bonds with all her might.  An agonized scream ripped from her lungs as she thrashed around trying to break free. Blood dripped from the wound on her arm caused by ripping out the I.V. needle.  The wire binding her wrists and ankles was hot enough to instantly cauterize the deep cuts it caused.  This time, she lasted nearly four minutes before she succumbed to the pain and passed out.


When Wade stopped talking, Kim sat back and said, “Let me see if I’ve got all of this straight, someone used the NSA computer to design a debilitating biological agent, then used it on cities across the country to create a massive panic so that Congress would declare martial law?”


“And you don’t know who the master mind is?”


“Drakken’s already in custody, Dr. Director was part of it… but now she’s been discredited, perhaps sacrificed. What about Gemini?”

“No one’s seen him or heard from him for the last month.”

“It should be easy to figure it out.”

“What do you mean?”

“Who’s in charge right now?”

“What do you mean ‘in charge’? In charge of what?”

“Who’s in charge of everything?  Martial law means that somewhere up the chain of command the buck has to stop.”


“So, we need to pass a buck and find out where it stops.”

“Good idea, Kim. I think I know how to do it. I just intercepted a message that Shego has been captured and is awaiting extradition in Valencia.”




Shego woke up in pain.  This is becoming a habit, she thought giddily.  Her bonds seemed to be the same, but she was now gagged.  Her right leg was numb and she couldn’t feel either of her arms below her elbows, but the spasming muscle in her neck seemed to be better now. Her body ached all over and the way she was tied forced her body to rest painfully against her burns.  She took several deep breaths and began a meditation routine to mitigate the pain.  The young Betty Director’s voice broke her concentration.

“If you’re planning another pointless attempt to melt your way out of those wires, I’d advise against it.”  Shego’s tormentor crouched down near her face and tapped the gag filling the pale woman’s mouth, almost making her throw up. “I added another of those remarkable heat conducting cables to your set up.  It goes right here.” She poked the gag again and laughed while Shego dry-heaved into it.  The spasms caused several of her burns to open up and begin oozing.  Her right shoulder was wrenched painfully and trying to scream almost caused her to throw up again. She stilled her body by force of will and glared defiantly at her torturer.

“If this doesn’t have the desired effect, I might put some in more sensitive areas…” She trailed her fingers down Shego's chest and stomach, stopping at her pelvis. “If ya' know what I mean.” Shego’s eyes widened involuntarily.  Lisa threw back her head and laughed from the gut.  When she finished, she got down on her hands and knees and put her face right against Shego’s until their noses touched. “The best part…” and she laughed again. “The best part is that, thanks to all those test you went though at the NSA, I know how to make your plasma flare against your will.”  She reached over to Shego’s ribs and pressed a pressure point.

Shego felt the burning pain flowing across all of her existing injuries and the horrifying sensation of hot metal in her mouth.  Her involuntary scream set off her gag reflex again and the spasm of her dry heaves pulled her right shoulder out of its socket. After her cramps passed and she felt like she could breathe once more, Lisa put her lips against Shego’s ear and whispered. “That was fun, let’s do it again.”  

Shego pulled desperately at her bonds, tearing the skin of her burns and wounds and agitating her already aching shoulder.  Lisa reached for her chest again and she tried to shrink from the touch but she couldn’t move. She closed her eyes and shook her head rapidly.  The heat came again and again, over and over. Each time accompanied by the voice.  She blocked out the words, they were too horrible to contemplate.  Better to think about the pain than the words.  Kitten is far away, She told herself, she won’t come for me. This bitch will never catch her. I’ll get out of these bindings, and when I do… I’ll kill her.


After nearly an hour of arguing, it was decided that Kim would head to Spain and try to spring Shego using forged papers provided by Wade. Ron wasn’t allowed to come because of the high probability that he would be recognized by anyone who had seen his picture. Bonnie didn’t seem disappointed by that development at all. But, when Kim presented her credential to the Stationmaster at Police Headquarters in Valencia, she was told that Shego had been released to Global Justice two days earlier.  She left the building as fast as she could without raising their suspicions and contacted Wade.

“They already got her, Wade.”

“Not exactly.” He said hesitantly.

“What do you mean?”

“She’s being held by Lisa Chairman.  I just got a message and an address.”

“Well, give me the address.”

“Kim, it’s a trap!”

“No, duh!” She replied sarcastically. “Of course it’s a trap! So what? I’m just going to leave Shego in the hands of Dr. Director’s daughter because it’s a trap? I don’t think so, Wade. Now give me the address.”

“Your ride’s on the way, Ron’ll meet you there.”

[End notes: Next Time:
Cage Match

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