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Attack On Olympus: The Siege

Attack On Olympus: The Siege

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1x1 between TheCrimsonLady and someguyinhere

2,599 readers have visited Attack On Olympus: The Siege since TheCrimsonLady created it.

Introduction

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In the underground world of Atlantic City, a secret organization, called Olympus uses it's power over economics to run the world. All was well until it's favorite son defected by killing it's leader...so it was said.

Having been proven too difficult to catch, the new leader had his team of scientists kidnap a young woman, Lola Cervantes and turn her into the perfect killing machine calling it Project Trickshot. Infused with nanites, she was meant to get close to him, charm him enough that she could kill him. Problem was, something went wrong, and she woke up before they could program the nanites for their prime directive, and with their help, Lola escaped.

Now these two will come together in the fight for revenge against Olympus.

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||Played by TheCrimsonLady||

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||Played by someguyinhere||

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The Story So Far... Write a Post » as written by 2 authors

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Character Portrait: Lola Cervantes Character Portrait: Aaron Maxson
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"You've got 24 hours. That was a failsafe I buried deep within the program written for them at Olympus. Chances are good it won't work a second time. The nanites have their own agenda, sub-routines I found hidden deep. I couldn't crack them. I have a limited skillset in that particular area, and it was some hardcore security."

Maxson walked further into the room, sitting on her bed and looking into her eyes. His stare was always so intense, so burning. It was almost like he couldn't shut it off, the aura he projected. It had been so deeply ingrained into him that it was a part of his very nature.

"My guess is that you are meant to be the first of many mindless, enslaved super drones. The nanites want you back at Olympus so that you can be captured, and the upload finalized. They brought you to me to kill two birds with one stone. Send us both back to Olympus, thinking we're there to achieve some kind of justice. To dish out recompense, only to betray us both. That's just my guess, anyway. I make damn good guesses for a living, however."

Maxson glanced around the room, smiling sadly before he looked back at her.

"I have two more codes I can use, that the nanites won't know about. One will deactivate them, and you, long enough for extraction. This was a failsafe the eggheads considered early on in the project, before they knew test subjects were expendable. The plan was to shut them down and remove them via surgical placement of a recall beacon. They swarm to it, attach like termites to a piece of wood, and they get pulled out all at once. I reinstated it secretly, because why the hell not?"

Maxson's sad smile turned to a frown before he continued.

"The third code is mine once more. Scorched Earth Protocol. Simply put, it will fry the nanites. With a 99.5% chance of killing you in the process. Odds don't get much better, huh? So I guess the question is where do you want to go from here, Cinnamon? Play the odds and walk knowingly into their trap?"

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"You've got 24 hours. That was a failsafe I buried deep within the program written for them at Olympus. Chances are good it won't work a second time. The nanites have their own agenda, sub-routines I found hidden deep. I couldn't crack them. I have a limited skillset in that particular area, and it was some hardcore security." He said, but all Lola heard at that moment was 24 hours of peace, she could sleep, rest, and relax for 24 hours. She watched him walk into the room, his eyes watching hers intently.

"My guess is that you are meant to be the first of many mindless, enslaved super drones. The nanites want you back at Olympus so that you can be captured, and the upload finalized. They brought you to me to kill two birds with one stone. Send us both back to Olympus, thinking we're there to achieve some kind of justice. To dish out recompense, only to betray us both. That's just my guess, anyway. I make damn good guesses for a living, however."
He told her and she sighed. That seemed like a pretty safe bet. She thought it would have guessed they'd play that trick, only it didn't work. or at least it hadn't yet.

He gave her a sad smile and Lola knew this was not going to be good.

"I have two more codes I can use, that the nanites won't know about. One will deactivate them, and you, long enough for extraction. This was a failsafe the eggheads considered early on in the project, before they knew test subjects were expendable. The plan was to shut them down and remove them via surgical placement of a recall beacon. They swarm to it, attach like termites to a piece of wood, and they get pulled out all at once. I reinstated it secretly, because why the hell not?"

He said and she rubbed the back of her head. So he could effectively remove the nanties from her body? Dare she hope for control of her own life?

"The third code is mine once more. Scorched Earth Protocol. Simply put, it will fry the nanites. With a 99.5% chance of killing you in the process. Odds don't get much better, huh? So I guess the question is where do you want to go from here, Cinnamon? Play the odds and walk knowingly into their trap?" Lola swallowed at that.

"99.5 percent of death huh?" She said, and mused over the options. She could go in to Olympus, try to shut them down before they kill her, as she was fairly certain she wasn't bulletproof, or let him pull the pull on her right now...

"Well," She said, and sat back. "Either way, I'm dead, might as well, try to take our a few hundred of them with me." She said.

"Will you be coming with me?" She asked, looking at him. "I'm asking nicely this time...." She said with a small smirk that didn't reach her eyes.

She wasn't a huge fan of thinking of the afterlife, but she hoped the rumors were at least half way true, and maybe, death wouldn't be so bad. It's not like she really had a choice anyway. She was half dead the moment they took her. She already sort of knew that, but hadn't had time to think about it much.

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Maxson didn't say anything for a few moments. He just looked at her. An observant person could tell there were gears turning in his head. His expression remained passive, however. Impossible to read, like any good spy.Why was he even considering this? There was nothing in it for him. No profit. No glory. Sadistic pleasure aside, he had grown accustomed to his life. A few explosions here, a bottle of fine whiskey, and a firm ass to slap at night.

Sure, there was running. A constant battle for his life. Impossible to make a connection, even if his sociopathic tendencies would allow such a thing. One battle after another, constantly staying one step ahead of his competition. Spending his lonely nights laughing at their missteps, drinking himself into a stupor that allowed him to forget. Forget everything, for one glorious moment in time, he was innocent. Inwardly, he frowned. I'm not much of a sociopath if I give this much of a shit, am I?

If he was honest, his life was a farce. He was nothing but a massive teenage, hormonal rage. Honed, trained, and spurred to kill. Encouraged to revel in it, like a drunk in a cheap bottle of wine. If he were honest with himself, his life was worthless. It always had been. He was an instrument wielded by the heavy hand of a secretive dictator. A club. A sword. His life had never been worth the money he'd spent preserving it, but what else was there to do? It wasn't in him to lay down and die, so survive he must. However, if survival were so paramount, why was he here? Why hadn't he killed her? Why was he having this damnable internal conflict? Perhaps survival had simply become boring.

"You have pretty eyes, Cinnamon." He said unexpectedly. "I don't mean anything by that. I just happened to notice." He was quiet a moment more. Then he smiled.

"They're hard to say no to, when you ask nicely. Alright. Let's march blindly into Dante's Inferno and face the trials of our souls together. However, we're going to need to do some shopping."

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"You have pretty eyes, Cinnamon." He said, after a long moment of silence. Lola arched an eyebrow. "What?" After pretty much saying that she was going to kill herself, and she wanted him to tag along. She didn't expect that to be the next thing out of his mouth, although given how he's been, she shouldn't have been surprised."I don't mean anything by that. I just happened to notice." He said and she rolled her eyes but there was a small smile tugging on her full lips.. She might as well enjoy this, they would likely be dead in the next 48 hours and won't have much time for anything.

"They're hard to say no to, when you ask nicely. Alright. Let's march blindly into Dante's Inferno and face the trials of our souls together. However, we're going to need to do some shopping." He said and she chuckled. She then pointed at her wall of monitors with a thumb.

"Alright then, I hope you plan on doing your shopping online, cause I've got millions in Bitcoin, but like 700 hundred in hard cash." She said and stood up, stretched. "You handle that, I'm gonna shower, Happy Shopping." She said and was on her way toward the bathroom, before stopping. "Thanks...." She said, tapping her head." For this, I mean, I'll actually be able to sleep, for the first time in a long time." She said. "For what it's worth." She said, and ducked into the bathroom. She left the door open, she didn't care if he saw her naked, and from where he sat, all he had to do was lean up to spot her in the mirror, until it fogged up. But hell, she was going die, one way or another, she didn't have time for false modesty, she needed to be able to hear if something went boom. She wasn't lying about the landmines.

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Maxson snorted.

"Bitcoins? What, am I going to use TOR and look for creepy robot porn on the deep web?" Maxson did indeed make use of her setup, but it was to setup a secure communications with someone he trusted. Well, technically he trusted no one. It was someone he could have killed if he wanted, and they knew it. That was good enough for him. Their contact was swift and to the pointless.

"I'm in the market."
"You know the place. Be on time."
"Acknowledged."

Maxson had the money, so he wasn't worried about it. He was tempted to peek on Cinnamon. He wanted to, in all honesty. He wasn't lacking in lechery, and he wouldn't mind letting her get a peek back. Fair was fair, after all. However, just this once, he respected someone's privacy. He still wasn't sure why he cared all the sudden. While she showered, Maxson went to work. UCD in hand, he accessed his pool of failsafes, making sure they were in place. There were weaknesses in IES that he knew how to exploit. He had built them in, out of sight, out of mind.

Even from the beginning, he had been preparing. Perhaps he'd always expected a dagger in the back. That was how he'd been trained, after all. Maxson would finish his work, and quietly leave her bedroom. He would crash on the couch, one leg hanging lazily over the arm of it. When Lola came out of the shower, she would find a neatly written note on her bed.

"We have a meet at 7 A.M., be ready to leave early. Cinnamon, I won't ever tell you this to your face, so this is as good as you're going to get. I'm sorry for the role I played in fucking up your life. We're likely going to die. I'm sorry you couldn't go out with someone better. I'll make you one promise: I won't let them take you alive. I'll fry you, one more ghost to haunt me in my eternal limbo. Burn this note. If the nanites saw it, they'd be rather unpleasant to deal with."

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Lola finsihed her shower, she was actually able to feel the hot water on her skin. The nanties numbed the pain, so she didn't feel much of anything physically, not even things that was register to the human brain as pleasure.

She walked out in a towel, drying her hair with another and noticed how Maxson wasn't in the room anymore and there was a note in his place.

"We have a meet at 7 A.M., be ready to leave early. Cinnamon, I won't ever tell you this to your face, so this is as good as you're going to get. I'm sorry for the role I played in fucking up your life. We're likely going to die. I'm sorry you couldn't go out with someone better. I'll make you one promise: I won't let them take you alive. I'll fry you, one more ghost to haunt me in my eternal limbo. Burn this note. If the nanites saw it, they'd be rather unpleasant to deal with."

Lola took a breath, tapping the paper to her chin. As unsettling as it was. He wasn't going to let them take her alive. Tears dripped down her cheeks.
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She didn't want to die, she could play it up all she wanted, she really didn't want to die. She thought she accepted it, but she guessed seeing it on paper made it more real.

She dropped her head into her hand and sobbed silently for a moment before taking the paper, tearing it into pieces and flushing it.

She finished drying off and pulled on some boyshorts and a tank top, and climbed into bed. She slid under the covers and lay there. She wanted to sleep, the bed was too cold, her mind to filled with thoughts of the life she didn't get to lead.

She didn't want to die, and she sure as hell didn't want to spend her last days depressed.

She shot up and walked out of the room, not bothering to change into anything more decent,and not before taking a look at the clock, she still had 21 hours before the nanites woke up, and they couldn't do shit until then.

She spotted him on the couch, his leg slung over the edge, his head back, a low snore rumbling his chest. She swallowed before tapping him.

"Hey." She said, unsure of why she was whispering.
"Hey, Max." She said again, tapping his shoulder. When he finally stirred and got his bearing, she looked intently at him.

"I've got twenty one hours before the nanties wake up, that means I have 21 hours to live, really live, I don't want to waste it." she told him. "I'm gonna die after that anyway right? Let's do something stupid." She said, her eyes unwavering.

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At first, Maxon grunted and rolled over. We awoke the first time she whispered his name. He had actually been asleep. He was both a spy, and a warrior. He knew how to make himself sleep, how to be refreshed with just a few hours. When she continued to pester him, he relented and sat up, looking at her.

"I've got twenty one hours before the nanties wake up, that means I have 21 hours to live, really live, I don't want to waste it." she told him. "I'm gonna die after that anyway right? Let's do something stupid."

Maxson blinked, regarding her with his piercing blue eyes. You don't want this, woman. I'm no good. ...Am I crazy?

"What, are we gonna rob a bank? Eat fast food? Get the 'Mystery Meat' on the menu at that one cart in the badlands?"

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"What, are we gonna rob a bank? Eat fast food? Get the 'Mystery Meat' on the menu at that one cart in the badlands?"
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Lola allowed herself to smile, albeit awkwardly. "While fast food does sound nice...." She bit her lip before she looked up, his starling blue eyes knew exactly what she had in mind, and for a beat, he looked as if he wanted to tell her no. "I was thinking a little more personal?" She said, and she couldn't believe she was about to do what she was about to do.
She didn't even like him that much, he was attractive, but an ass, not that she didn't have her moments, but this wasn't really about that, she wouldn't live long enough for any of that to matter, she just wanted to feel something, anything, while the nanites were out and hell, he screwed her once, why not make it so that they'd both enjoy it?

She reached up,a soft hand at his jaw, and leaned in with her lips, she didn't kiss him, but she was just close enough that if he wanted to pull away, he could, and if not, they're lips were practically touching.

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Maxson wasn't a good person. He was not a chivalrous man. He did not deny himself for the glory of another. He let their lips come together. Long enough to really get a feel of it all. Just as he got into it, just as he brought his hand up to her... he stopped. What the fuck is wrong with me?! He screamed at himself in his head, unable to make sense of his own actions. He brought his hand up and placed it on her chest. Between the two glorious monuments every fiber of his being wished to gently and slowly examine.

Instead, he felt her heart beating. As he pulled away, he looked into her eyes and in that moment, he felt like he could see her laid bare. Not the kind of laying bare he'd normally be doing at this moment, but rather the soul searching kind. His eyes pierced her own, their intense glare probably making her feel as if she were being X-rayed. For all intents and purposes, she was. Maxson sighed, gazing at the woman whose life he'd helped ruined. He was a bad person. He was not a hero, he was not the kind of person who cared about someone else.

He couldn't. He couldn't bring himself to take advantage of her. Especially not after what he'd just seen. Or maybe, rather, he'd felt it somehow. Sure, he felt it. Why the fuck not. Everything else about his world had gone terribly wrong, including his newfound chivalry. He blinked, realizing his other hand had risen to cup one of her cheeks, holding her face in his rough but gentle grip.

"You don't want to die, do you Cinnamon? Answer me. Honestly."

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Lola relaxed into the kiss, letting her mind fall away, allowing her to feel the pleasure of such action. Before she knew it, his hand came up, and rested on her chest, but only after he stopped. He wasn't groping her, his hand just rested there, as if feeling her heart beneath her chest. He pulled away from her lips, and watched her eyes that blinked a moment. They bore into her, as if trying to peel away everything to reach her heart and soul. She wasn't sure she liked the feeling, but there was something in his eyes too, something hidden behind the crystal blue orbs.

Regret. It was the only thing she could think of, and guilt.

His free hand rose to her cheek, cupping her face in his large palm. She could see it then, he wouldn't take advantage of her, she was vulnerable, and as much as he liked to think of himself as moral-less man, how he may have acted like it. He wasn't. He wasn't as heartless as he thought he was.

"You don't want to die, do you Cinnamon? Answer me. Honestly." He asked and Lola looked to the floor. "No, no I don't." She told him, fighting back her tears. God, she was scared, she didn't want to die, she didn't want her life to just be over.

"I'm scared." She told him, truthfully blinking to stop the tears from falling, but in vain as they trickled down her cheek and down his palm. "This doesn't end with me getting to live, If we go, they kill me, if I don't, they'll chase me and I run, that's not a life, Max." She told him. "I don't want to die, but I won't get to live either."

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Maxson smiled grimly. Comforting obviously wasn't something he did often, as the smile looked akin to something the wolf had before eating Little Red Riding Hood. With a little yank, he pulled her down onto the couch where he patted her a bit awkwardly. Truth told, he wasn't much for cuddling either. He was trying, why he didn't fully understand. His voice, at least, was a little soothing.

"Shh. It'll be... okay. Yeah. It'll be fine. I'm just looking at this from the wrong angle, Cinnamon. Maybe I should think about how to win, rather than how to go out blazing, huh?"

His mind ground into action, hard. He had never really thought about the possibility of surviving if he ever went back into the mouth of the beast. It just wasn't likely. So unlikely that it hadn't been worth considering. But could he? Perhaps it was time to see if he still had any friends. By friends, he meant people who were scared shitless of him. For the moment, he did his best to hold the woman next to him and seem like he'd done it before.

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Lola allow him to tug her toward him, his wolfish grin was a little disturbing and his embrace was awkward, it was clear he wasn't sure to this.

"Shh. It'll be... okay. Yeah. It'll be fine. I'm just looking at this from the wrong angle, Cinnamon. Maybe I should think about how to win, rather than how to go out blazing, huh?"

He said, and she rest her head on his shoulder, with his hand on her back.

"I think you are looking at this from the right angel, Max." She said, quietly. "I think you're trying to make me feel better, and I appreciate that, but if we don't die, at least it'll be a pleasant surprise." She said and then looked at him, brushing away her tears with a finger.

"What did they do to you? I mean, you were in charge, so what did they do...or knowing you, and your sparkling personality.." She smiled sadly at that. "what did you do to piss them off?"

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He shrugged, smiling grimly.

"It's because I am who I am. I'm a self-interested and dangerous man. I would put my own interests and survival above that of any of the Heads of Olympus, and they knew it. Tools like me were being phased out. Replaced by enhanced super soldiers, indestructible lobotomites. Enter the Athena Initiative. Project Victory as it was colloquially known. I'm from the Ares era. Raw, untamed violence. Pure destruction. Too unpredictable."

Maxson sighed, still trying to comfort her. If he was honest, he was... enjoying this. Holding someone close. He'd never done it before. Not like this, anyway. He had held people close before, as they struggled. As he choked the life from them, or as their hot blood ran over his hands. He had never just done... this.

"You can't have wild variables running about mucking up the equation, basically. I was never fully in favor of the project, but I was at the tip of the spear as the head of IES. I grew more disenfranchised as I found out more about what was happening. Time came, I saw the writing on the wall, and I got out. It was a hostile takeover of the literal kind. The Director of Olympus found dead in his home. All the evidence pointed towards a ghost. Law Enforcement had no idea what the hell had happened, but those within Olympus knew who the boogeyman was. The bitch heading everything up now was, quite incidentally, the one who proposed the Athena Initiative in the first place. Funny how these things work, huh?"

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"It's because I am who I am. I'm a self-interested and dangerous man. I would put my own interests and survival above that of any of the Heads of Olympus, and they knew it. Tools like me were being phased out. Replaced by enhanced super soldiers, indestructible lobotomites. Enter the Athena Initiative. Project Victory as it was colloquially known. I'm from the Ares era. Raw, untamed violence. Pure destruction. Too unpredictable."
Max sigh, his hand still brushing her back, her head still on his shoulder. He was getting use to it, if she didn't know any better, she thought he was enjoying it and if she were honest with herself, she would have admitted that, it did feel nice. To be held and he wasn't so bad, most of it was bravado.

She recalled what he said. He was the almost more of a third party then part of Olympus itself. She was apart of the Athena Initiative. She would have thought that was cool, if they didn't try to wipe way everything that was her and use her body as a weapon.

"You can't have wild variables running about mucking up the equation, basically. I was never fully in favor of the project, but I was at the tip of the spear as the head of IES. I grew more disenfranchised as I found out more about what was happening. Time came, I saw the writing on the wall, and I got out. It was a hostile takeover of the literal kind. The Director of Olympus found dead in his home. All the evidence pointed towards a ghost. Law Enforcement had no idea what the hell had happened, but those within Olympus knew who the boogeyman was. The bitch heading everything up now was, quite incidentally, the one who proposed the Athena Initiative in the first place. Funny how these things work, huh?"

That took Lola by surprise. He didn't want to be apart of the project, he never approved of it. Sure he may have be apart of it, and threw in a bunch of failsafes, but only because he saw how fucked up it really was.

"So while the world doesn't know what happened, Olympus agents are looking to kill you and frame you for a crime you didn't commit? That seems awfully convoluted." She said, gears turning in her head. The more she knew about them the better, and honestly, all she really had were images and a man named Sir. She had no real memory of being in Olympus at all. She saw the symbol, and the name on the way out, but beyond that, nothing. Something clicked just then. "you think the Director of Olympus didn't want to project to happen either? I mean, that makes sense why you were to blame, perhaps it was never greenlit, for--" She gestured to herself, "obvious reasons and whoever is in charge decided to kill two birds with one stone." She said, and then suddenly, images played behind her head, making her head ache so bad that she pulled from Maxson and clutched her skull,.

A Man, a Bed. Her hands and blood.

Her eyes went wide. Without the nanties to suppress the memory, she got it all back. The test run.

"Oh god!" She cried, looking beyond him, dropping her hands.

"It was me...." She told him, her voice a mere whisper, her body trembling. "I think....Max, I think I killed the Director...."

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"Hm." He said outloud. Maxson kept the next thought to himself. Interesting. It certainly presented an interesting line of possibilities to him. He knew for a fact her initial assumption was wrong. The original Director had been very sold on the idea of looking into more controllable assassins. The nanite method had taken considerable pushing, however. The Director eventually committed funds to the project, funneling them through multiple Military Complex organizations.

Billions of dollars of international defense funds, meant to combat terrorism or whatever the fuck the current boogeyman was, were diverted. The project burned through money like an NBA Superstar. R&D alone took up to two years of non-stop work, and constant lobbying to secure more funding.

"If that's true, then chances are doubly good this was a power grab, Cinnamon." He leaned back on the couch, gazing at her. "Think about it. You are the culmination of billions of dollars. Money, at the moment, is tight. The world economy is getting gang-banged from all directions by Olympus implants. Bought politicians, honest men scared crooked, and in-the-closet Olympus members. Compounded by years of manipulating people into getting too cozy with 'benevolent' handouts. Then when they yank the plug and let the water drain out, the bubbles explode. Stocks crash, banks freeze people's assets, people riot."

Maxson growled. He preferred to create chaos with his own hands. He never saw the enjoyment in causing suffering to people by fucking with their money. Fat, overstuffed cowards sitting behind their desks.

"This is how they assert control, in one country after the next. It's why the world has been on the decline for decades now. Cities abandoned, buildings left to rot. Nature takes over, the desperate move in. Infrastructure decays where it is no longer financially feasible to maintain it. You get the badlands, you get Atlantic City. There's more Atlantic Cities all over the U.S. and Europe, more Badlands. Point is, money is precious at the moment. Margo Benelli has always been an Olympus fanatic, and she was adamant that her Athena Initiative was the answer to growing resistance in the world governments."

Maxson paused, fully gathering his thoughts and allowing Lola a moment to absorb everything.

"So. She lobbies, cuts corners on the project. This leads to more loss of life from test subjects, and puts more pressure on the eggheads working the project. She takes the money she's scraping off the pile and uses to lobby internally in Olympus. Heads of State, Senators, Congressmen, members of Parliament. She secures the support she needs to be elected Director, then she uses her pet project to kill the current Director and pin it on a scapegoat within Olympus. Someone she hated, someone that represents chaos, the old way of doing things. I'm the poster boy for that shit, Cinnamon. She let you go. They let you escape, and the Nanite's prime directive is get you to lure me back to an Olympus facility, where we'll both be terminated."

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"Hm." That was all he said, all of this was devastating to her, and all he could say was hm. She turned, brushing away the last of her salty tears, trying not to let the memory of killing a man she'd slept with plague her thoughts.

"If that's true, then chances are doubly good this was a power grab, Cinnamon." He leaned back on the couch, his eyes on her. "Think about it. You are the culmination of billions of dollars. Money, at the moment, is tight. The world economy is getting gang-banged from all directions by Olympus implants. Bought politicians, honest men scared crooked, and in-the-closet Olympus members. Compounded by years of manipulating people into getting too cozy with 'benevolent' handouts. Then when they yank the plug and let the water drain out, the bubbles explode. Stocks crash, banks freeze people's assets, people riot."
He added and Lola looked at him. Government Fatcats. Figures, that would be the thing. All of this shit because someone wanted and or needed more money. Max growled and she frowned.

"This is how they assert control, in one country after the next. It's why the world has been on the decline for decades now. Cities abandoned, buildings left to rot. Nature takes over, the desperate move in. Infrastructure decays where it is no longer financially feasible to maintain it. You get the badlands, you get Atlantic City. There's more Atlantic Cities all over the U.S. and Europe, more Badlands. Point is, money is precious at the moment. Margo Benelli has always been an Olympus fanatic, and she was adamant that her Athena Initiative was the answer to growing resistance in the world governments."

He paused and she memorized the name. Margo Benelli. She would remember that name, she would put a face to it, and a bullet to the face of the name. Billions of dollars coming back to bite her in the ass.

"So. She lobbies, cuts corners on the project. This leads to more loss of life from test subjects, and puts more pressure on the eggheads working the project. She takes the money she's scraping off the pile and uses to lobby internally in Olympus. Heads of State, Senators, Congressmen, members of Parliament. She secures the support she needs to be elected Director, then she uses her pet project to kill the current Director and pin it on a scapegoat within Olympus. Someone she hated, someone that represents chaos, the old way of doing things. I'm the poster boy for that shit, Cinnamon. She let you go. They let you escape, and the Nanite's prime directive is get you to lure me back to an Olympus facility, where we'll both be terminated."

Lola sat back on the couch. "If we go back, then...we'll really be playing right back into her hands....." She said, and looked at him with sad eyes. " What do we do then? You could fry me....not a route I really want to take, but then what? She'll grab some other girl, she'll still win." She said. God this was depressing. She shouldn't have hoped for anything, for a second, when he asked if she wanted to die, she hoped there was a better plan, somewhere in his mind but no, they were back to square one. They should have just went back to making out, it was less stressful.

"Max, how do we win?"

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Maxson exhaled slowly, thinking about every contingency he could possibly put into play. When it came right down to it, though, the answer was obvious. They couldn't win. Olympus wasn't an entity they could put in a bullet in. Olympus was a place, or rather multiple places. It was an idea. It was an amalgamation of people and corruption. It was living, breathing, but also a spector. Destroying Olympus in one fell swoop was a literal impossibility.

So, what then? If he wasn't planning a suicide run to finally end all the bullshit... what was he doing? Why was he even here, with her? Why did he care? He cursed internally. The same damn questions, over and over. Fuck it. Aaron Maxson didn't lose, damn it!

"Aaron Maxson doesn't lose..." He muttered out out. He looked to her, his eyes suddenly burning with intensity. "We can't take down Olympus, but I can sure as hell try to fix a life I allowed to be ruined. Guess we all gotta do one good deed in our lives, huh Cinnamon?"

He leaned into her, a sly grin crossing his face.

"Small victories. Have to focus on the small victories, Cinnamon. Like me. I had fun last night. I had a drink this morning. The smell of plastic explosives. Now I'm holding a beautiful woman as we plot violence together. Victories all around."

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"Aaron Maxson doesn't lose..." Maxson said, suddenly, his eyes full of fervor and determination. "We can't take down Olympus, but I can sure as hell try to fix a life I allowed to be ruined. Guess we all gotta do one good deed in our lives, huh Cinnamon?" He said and a wolfish grin danced across his face as he leaned into her. Taking down Olympus would be impossible, that much was clear, there were too many variables, and they couldn't just walk int, and shoot the place up, despite how nice that would feel. So what the hell were they supposed to do?

"Small victories. Have to focus on the small victories, Cinnamon. Like me. I had fun last night. I had a drink this morning. The smell of plastic explosives. Now I'm holding a beautiful woman as we plot violence together. Victories all around."

Lola allowed herself to chuckle, resting her head back on his shoulder. "Fair enough, I suppose." She said. "I still have a night of peace before the nanties wake and fuck it all up, I suppose that was better than I was a few nights ago." She said and smiled up at him tightly. "Small victories...." She said and looked at him. resting her chin on his shoulder. "So now what? How do you expect to fix my life, It's already over?"

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"By stealing it back, Cinnamon. I'm a spy too, not just an assassin. I infiltrate. We just need to insert ourselves at the right place, hit the right spot... I've always said, good subterfuge is like sex."

He pulled his UCD from his pocket. He unfolded the device to full size, the floating display projected inside the expanded frame. As she watched, he accessed his secure network. It bounced between numerous dummy addresses and intermediaries. It expanded all over the globe, coming back to him at last as he assessed that pocket of information. His encryption melted away at the entrance of a phrase.

He began flicking through his files, flinging away an unnecessary file that spun away quite satisfactorily in the display. He found what he was looking for, and pulled up what appeared to be a blueprint. He expanded it to full size, allowing Lola to peruse it as well.

"This is Outpost 8820. In reference to the staff 8-8-20, scientists, support, and security. It's basically a secure bunker, automated defenses not included. It's a surgical lab, just out in the Badlands. It has access to a nearly endless supply of humanity no one will miss. At least, no one who can do anything about it. It stretches underground for a good amount of distance, plenty of tech space plus living quarters."

He tapped on the display and scrolled over. He zoomed in on what he identified as the entrance.

"The entrance is hidden. I know where it is, but the front door is a no-no. We'll be shredded by turret fire, likely incendiary. Your nanites wouldn't even be able to save you. Rather, I cause a distraction while you slip into the cooling intakes for their power supply, here."

He scrolled over, zooming in and tapping on the display for her.

"Of course there will be turbines you'll need to watch out for, but the nanites should be able to get you through in one piece. I'll grab a second UCD from one of my safehouses, make a copy of this blueprint for you. I'll program a course so you know exactly where to go. Your goal will be the the Security and Communications center. It'll be IES controlled, and there will likely be armored guards inside, assuming you get past the blast door. I should be able to get it up, but I'll need to see if I can infiltrate their system remotely first. I should be able to find their network, but it'll be as heavily protected as my own. If I can't do that from here and secure a hidden line, we may as well forget about everything."

He zoomed into the central room, which he had indicated as the IES center. "Now, assuming that goes well, you kill the big baddies. Then you'll need to cut the turrets. I'd say cut the communications as well, but somehow I doubt the nanites will let you. Best not to antagonize them until we push deeper into the facility. This was a key location for the Athena Iniative, so there's no telling what else we'll encounter in there. However, of all the nearby facilities, this is the most likely one to have one of the Recall Beacon prototypes. Which is what we need to get your life back, Cinnamon."

He paused, looking into her eyes with a grim smile.

"Basically, it's gonna be rough. And you can't let on to the nanites what we're doing until it's too late. Or you'll be in for a rough time. So, what do you say?"

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"By stealing it back, Cinnamon. I'm a spy too, not just an assassin. I infiltrate. We just need to insert ourselves at the right place, hit the right spot... I've always said, good subterfuge is like sex."
Lola looked at him like he was crazy, but decided to leave it for now, as he pulled the UCD from his pocket. She shifted, beside him, watching him as the computer did things her brain couldn't fully process without the nanties' help. She was only really good with guns and bikes, computers weren't really her jam.

"This is Outpost 8820. In reference to the staff 8-8-20, scientists, support, and security. It's basically a secure bunker, automated defenses not included. It's a surgical lab, just out in the Badlands. It has access to a nearly endless supply of humanity no one will miss. At least, no one who can do anything about it. It stretches underground for a good amount of distance, plenty of tech space plus living quarters." He said, and zoomed in, while she watched over his shoulder.
.

"The entrance is hidden. I know where it is, but the front door is a no-no. We'll be shredded by turret fire, likely incendiary. Your nanites wouldn't even be able to save you. Rather, I cause a distraction while you slip into the cooling intakes for their power supply, here." He said, and she nodded. "Shouldn't be too hard." she commented. Nothing was with the nanties.


"Of course there will be turbines you'll need to watch out for, but the nanites should be able to get you through in one piece. I'll grab a second UCD from one of my safehouses, make a copy of this blueprint for you. I'll program a course so you know exactly where to go. Your goal will be the the Security and Communications center. It'll be IES controlled, and there will likely be armored guards inside, assuming you get past the blast door. I should be able to get it up, but I'll need to see if I can infiltrate their system remotely first. I should be able to find their network, but it'll be as heavily protected as my own. If I can't do that from here and secure a hidden line, we may as well forget about everything." He said and she nodded.

"Simple enough." she said, with a heavy dose of sarcasm.

"Now, assuming that goes well, you kill the big baddies. Then you'll need to cut the turrets. I'd say cut the communications as well, but somehow I doubt the nanites will let you. Best not to antagonize them until we push deeper into the facility. This was a key location for the Athena Iniative, so there's no telling what else we'll encounter in there. However, of all the nearby facilities, this is the most likely one to have one of the Recall Beacon prototypes. Which is what we need to get your life back, Cinnamon." He said, and smiled at her, and she smiled right back.

"Basically, it's gonna be rough. And you can't let on to the nanites what we're doing until it's too late. Or you'll be in for a rough time. So, what do you say?"

"I say, It sounds good to me, besides....I like it rough." She said, with a wink, but then sat back, a question dawning on her. "What happens after that?" She asked. "We ride off into the sunset?" She said with a laugh. "What happens to you? I get my life back, but you have still run?"

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"Assuming we actually make it out of there alive? I go back to being what I am, Cinnamon. A lonely, homicidal maniac. You? You get as far away from me as you can. You leave Olympus behind, maybe go somewhere in Asia. They don't have a real presence there yet. You leave us all behind, and live a life. That's why I'm doing this shit, isn't it?" Maxson answered.

Aaron leaned back into the couch, falling silent as his mind worked. He compiled his shopping list, calculated his steps, planned on how to survive his frontal distraction. That didn't take long. What he needed to plan on was how he was going to react to surprises, to the changes he had no way of knowing about. There would be some, he knew that. No plan survived contact with the enemy, but their slim chances of success relied on some parts of his plan being carried out. There was room for improvisation, but not much.

"I'm going to need guns. I don't like using guns. They aren't very personal, you know?" He said with a playfully wolfish grin. He checked the time, looking at Lola.

"You gonna get any sleep tonight?"

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"Assuming we actually make it out of there alive? I go back to being what I am, Cinnamon. A lonely, homicidal maniac. You? You get as far away from me as you can. You leave Olympus behind, maybe go somewhere in Asia. They don't have a real presence there yet. You leave us all behind, and live a life. That's why I'm doing this shit, isn't it?" He said and she looked at him. He was trying to give her back her life, but he had no plans on taking back his own.

"I'm going to need guns. I don't like using guns. They aren't very personal, you know?" He said with a wolfish grin and she laughed a little. She stood up and stretched. "Everything else takes too long." She muttered before he looked at her again.

"You gonna get any sleep tonight?" He asked and she looked at him for a long time. He wasn't nearly as bad as he thought he was, or tried to seem. He wouldn't be doing all this for her if he was. Sure he played a part in ruining her life, but he was trying to fix it, he deserved a real life of his own.

"I don't know," She said with a shrug. "Am I?" She said, and walked toward the bedroom, whether he was behind her or not, was entirely up to him.

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Maxson smiled and laughed at her back. He watched her disappear into her room. He thought about following her. God, he wanted to. He didn't know what the hell was wrong with him, honestly. Something about her... shook him. It wasn't that he'd ruined her life, not entirely. He normally didn't give two shits about what happened to people who weren't him. He had no illusion about being a good person. Normally at this time of night, if he didn't have a woman wrapped around him, he had a drink and music playing softly.

He sank into the couch, still staring at her bedroom door. She reminded of something. Or maybe, someone. His blue eyes registered brief pain, then confusion. What..? He thought he could remember something for a second, then it slipped away. That happened to him sometimes. When he tried to think back before he had been this. Perhaps there was something he didn't want to remember. It made no difference, really.

Unbidden, a song that seemed to soothe the missing memory came to his mind. He could hear the mellow tones in the back of his mind. It was an old favorite, and the words came to his lips. Carrying clear across the quiet cabin.

"Worried moon, shining bright. Can I sleep here tonight right beside you? I got a long way to go, I'll be off in the morning and I hope but I don't know..." He rose from the couch, walking to her bedroom door and stopping short just in the doorway. He looked in at her, as if he were doing something he'd never really done before. Waiting... wanting a rational woman's consent. If she gave it, he would certainly walk through that doorway and pass the night.

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Lola climbed into bed, having taking her time getting there. She was just about to lay down, when Max's voice rose up. "Worried moon, shining bright. Can I sleep here tonight right beside you? I got a long way to go, I'll be off in the morning and I hope but I don't know..." He sang before walking up to the doorway. He watched her as she watched him. He seemed to be waiting. She didn't know what it was about him just then, waiting for her words, waiting for her to do something. So far her life had been the opposite, nothing went her way because she said it. No one gave her a choice in anything.
Image

Until now, She tugged the sheet over, with a smile, and beckoned him with a finger. "C'mon, You can sleep here tonight...."
She said, and as he approached her she chuckled. "Or not." She held her arms out to him, pulling him into a sweet kiss.


Lola lay with her head on his chest, once they were finished, her body still slick with a thin sheen of sweat, her blankets and sheets having been discarded along with her sleepwear, the moon peeking in through the window, baring witness to their temporary break from reality. Her fingers danced on his chest, in small circles, thinking of what was to come. "You can come with me." She said, her voice a mere whisper. "You don't have to stay away," She said, but hadn't bothered to look up at him, her fingers still playing on his chest.

"What do you want, Max? Answer me honestly." she said, echoing his own words to him.

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Maxson exhaled in satisfaction, casting a downwards glance at her. What did he want? The answer to that was simple enough, really.

"Don't know, Cinnamon. Honestly my life has just been jumping from one thrill to the next and reveling in my inability to die."

It wasn't an untrue statement. He'd never really had the option to sit and think about what he wanted. He beat up a few tools, left them in a janitorial closet, and he was scooped up and molded into a killer. He followed orders. Then he gave them. Always towards someone else's objective. Just doing his job. What he wanted was never even a thing that entered his mind really. Grinning, he gave her a second answer.

"I suppose I wouldn't mind being a singer. I also wouldn't mind round two, Cinnamon."

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"Good subterfuge is like sex. Excitement, anticipation, tight spaces, and ultimately one party is left very unsatisfied."

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"It's really rather simple, find them, kill them."

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"It's really rather simple, find them, kill them."

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"Good subterfuge is like sex. Excitement, anticipation, tight spaces, and ultimately one party is left very unsatisfied."

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"It's really rather simple, find them, kill them."

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"Good subterfuge is like sex. Excitement, anticipation, tight spaces, and ultimately one party is left very unsatisfied."


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