Chapter 1: Prologue
Brigid Tenenbaum walked briskly past Rapture citizens, mostly drunks. It was late, or early, depending how one decided to view the time of day. Several loud belches, jokes, and lewd comments flew past Tenenbaum as she strode past the unruly citizens. An anger welled up within her, as well as a heavy dose of disgust. She kept her hands firmly balled into fists and at her side as she made her way to the laboratory of Fontaine Futuristics. She had already made sure her colleague was still in the building. Pushing open the doors, Tenenbaum walked past a room housing a small child softly crying and rocking back and forth. The child’s distress went unnoticed by the German scientist as she burst into Dr. Suchong’s office.
“We need to begin working on a new formula,” she stated curtly, striding to the center of the room.
“May Suchong ask what kind of formula, Tenenbaum?” Suchong questioned icily.
“Similar to the WYK formula, but more powerful. Efficient,” Tenenbaum answered quickly, grabbing a notebook from a pile on his desk, “And we need new phrases. More of them, with more possibilities. The subject will also be introduced to ADAM as an embryo.”
“Why ADAM?” Suchong inquired, writing in his notes as he spoke.
“I’m hoping that if the subject has ADAM for blood, that it will reduce or eliminate the possibility of ADAM sickness,” Tenenbaum answered.
“Might Suchong know where Tenenbaum find another embryo? Did Andrew Ryan have another with a whore?” Suchong asked, taking the notebook from the German scientist’s hands. Tenenbaum leaned against the desk, quiet, with her back turned away from Suchong.
“It is my own,” she replied softly, “As well as Fontaine’s.”
“Are you mad?” Suchong demanded, sweeping closer in his fury, “Fontaine will have our heads if he finds out about this!”
“He will not, and must not,” the German woman snapped in the china man’s face, “Fontaine will hear no word of this!”
“You are truly insane.” Suchong shook his head, “But Suchong curious, so Suchong will help.”
“Suchong has much to show Mr. Fontaine. Development with the subject is going according to plan,” Suchong prattled as he walked. Frank barely paid much attention, he just wanted to know how much longer he would have to wait for his little frankenstein to be developed enough to begin the next phase in his plan. Andrew Ryan would never see it coming.
“Just make this quick, Suchong,” Fontaine growled, “I’ve got places to be.”
“Of course, Mr. Fontaine. Suchong will be very quick,” the scientist replied. The pair stopped by a window looking into a room with the child from earlier inside. Except, the child looked very much more like a young adult.
“Subject’s physical appearance is almost complete, but the mental growth is a bit of an issue. Suchong hoping to speed this up before next visit,” Suchong explained.
“This better be fixed by the next time I get down here,” Fontaine snapped, “I don’t have forever to wait for this kid to get where I need ‘im.”
“Suchong will share progress with Mr. Fontaine,” Suchong offered, beginning to walk towards his office. The Chinese scientist opened the door, walking into the room with Fontaine behind him. The businessman scanned the room while Suchong rifled through papers muttering to himself.
“Suchong, I don’t remember ordering two assassins,” Fontaine began, “Did you clone the kid or something?”
“Oh no, Mr. Fontaine. That is Tenenbaum’s,” Suchong replied absently without looking up. Fontaine took a moment to think about what the scientist meant, before remembering a recent late night he and the Kraut had shared. Grabbing the scientist by the front of his coat, Fontaine pulled Suchong close to him.
“Tenenbaum’s? As her kid?!” the businessman demanded roughly.
“D-did Suchong say Tenenbaum? I meant merely Tenenbaum has new experimen-”
“Don’t lie to me you pinhead!” Fontaine snarled, “You will find yourself on the wrong side of the glass.”
“S-Suchong was not aware embryo was Mr. Fontaine’s. Tenenbaum only told me recently. She wants a formula similar to WYK, and to infuse the embryo with ADAM,” Suchong stammered in response. Fontaine released the frightened scientist and brushed himself off.
“Listen here, you right bastard. You either take away all the effects that Kraut wants, or you add others specifically approved by me without telling any of this to the German bitch. Your pick.”
“S-Suchong cannot take away effects, too dangerous for embryo, but Suchong can make additions,” the scientist replied meekly.
“How fast can you make those additions?” Fontaine growled.
“Additions can be added within two days Mr. Fontaine,” Suchong replied, grabbing one of his notebooks and hastily writing down all of the phrases Tenenbaum had already decided on and their effects.
“I’ll be back in two days. None of this is getting back to the Kraut, and you will make sure I can take the kid before she does. Got it?”
“Suchong understands, Mr. Fontaine.”
“You’re certain Fontaine has not found out about this?” Tenenbaum asked, watching as the child slept quietly in one of the rooms.
“Suchong is very careful, Mr. Fontaine has no idea,” Suchong replied, “But Suchong curious. Why does Tenenbaum want this child? And with all of the conditioning?”
“That is none of your business, Suchong,” Tenenbaum snapped, “Just tell me when child is ready to leave the lab.”
“One week, Tenenbaum. Suchong must make sure conditioning is effective,” Suchong answered, “Suchong will let you know. Suchong wants subject gone before Mr. Fontaine finds out.”
Tenenbaum turned on her heel stopping at the door exiting the lab.
“Fontaine must never know he has a child,” she said before closing the door behind her. Suchong waited as the clicking of her heels faded away into silence.
“Brat could get Suchong killed, “Suchong muttered, “Brat not worth Suchong’s life.”
“You’re right, that kid’s life is far more important than yours.”
“Mr. Fontaine, Suchong did not hear you come in!” Suchong whirled around, turning pale at the sight of the businessman standing in the doorway.
“The kid ready to go?” Fontaine asked, ignoring Suchong’s incessant excuses.
“Suchong has finished testing everything, so yes, child ready to leave lab,” Suchong explained, opening the door to the room. Fontaine brushed past the scientist into the room. The kid was no more than three, at least, that’s the age he looked.
“This kid has no other growth modifications, right?” Fontaine demanded, turning a stern glare on the nervous china man.
“Of course not, Mr. Fontaine. Suchong add no other growth modifications. Tenenbaum wanted to see natural growth after this age.”
Fontaine regarded the sleeping child in front of him. Soft dark brown curls brushed across the child’s soft plump face.
“Tenenbaum name the kid?” Fontaine asked.
“Subject ADAM,” Suchong answered, “She did not want to feel any connection with the subj-er child.”
“Tch, typical of the Kraut,” Fontaine grimaced, kneeling down and scooping the kid in his arms.
“Remember, Suchong,” Fontaine started, stopping beside the scientist, “Wrong side of the glass if she finds out.”
“Of course, Mr. Fontaine. She won’t know.”
Chapter 2: Chapter 1
Tiberius attempts to sneak out twice. Fails miserably.
Sorry for the long wait, I'll probably put that short into drafts or something. College keeps me busy. I'm hoping to get more done since we're getting to the really interesting bits now.
“Can you believe that old bag-of-bones fell asleep, Atticus?” Tiberius grumbled, tapping his pencil on the expensive wooden desk his father usually reserved for work. The bag-of-bones in question was a professional teacher that had fallen asleep in the opposing recliner mid-lecture. Atticus merely whirred in response, floating close to the eight-year-old’s head while he groaned in frustration.
“I don’t see why Father insists I listen to his boring old lectures,” Tiberius complained to the whirring security bot, “I learn more from books.”
Tiberius regarded the snoring old man for a moment before picking up a spare pencil and tossing it at his forehead.
“Snrt- As I was saying, during the revolutionary war era...” Mr. Schopp mumbled before beginning to doze again.
“Wow, he’s really conked out,” Tiberius smirked, looking to Atticus, “We should go see a flick at the theater. Father won’t be back for another two hours at least.”
Atticus chirped apprehensively, buzzing to the door in a poor attempt to block it.
“Well, I’m not stupid, Atticus. I’m not gonna make myself easy to catch.” Tiberius grinned, jumping down from his chair and walking past the wheezing man. A small air-vent that led outside the penthouse(he’d checked two days ago while his father was arguing with someone loudly in another room) was his planned escape-route. Atticus chirped worriedly behind the eight-year old as he unscrewed the vent and put it on the ground.
“Come on, Atticus! You have your own trapdoor to get out of, and no one’s going to notice. Father’s busy interrogating some bozo about misplaced goods or something,” Tiberius told the bot, clambering into the vent. The vent was small and dark, leaving Tiberius to feel his way around. The light shining through the slats at the end of the vent elicited a smirk from Tiberius as he wiggled forward. Just as he was about to reach through to unscrew the vent, it was ripped from the wall and the eight-year old was pulled out by the arm.
“You’re such a party-pooper,” Tiberius huffed, giving his father’s right-hand, Reggie, a firm glare. The older man just rolled his eyes and set the kid on the ground.
“Your father wouldn’t be so happy to find you trying to sneak out again,” Reggie grumped, pushing open the penthouse door.
“I’m eight not five,” Tiberius grumbled, “I just wanted to watch a movie!”
“You can take that up with the boss when he gets back,” Reggie said, giving Tiberius a light shove into the penthouse. The door slammed behind the bodyguard with Tiberius angrily stomping over to his sleeping tutor.
“Wake up, Sleazebag,” Tiberius snapped, smacking the older man with a rolled-up newspaper, “My father will have your head if you don’t.”
Mr. Schopp grumbled, rubbing his face where the paper made contact.
“We were finished anyway, Young Man, and you should respect your elders.”
The professor gathered up his papers, and bags and shuffled out of the penthouse, bidding Reggie a good afternoon. Atticus whirred next to the eight-year old chirping softly.
“Lot good of help you were,” Tiberius snapped, swatting the bot away as he stepped down the stairs and towards the back window. A small section of the space had a little alcove with a door, with books all over shelves inside. Tiberius’ father had the book alcove made when he discovered Tiberius’ intense love for reading, and often would find the kid sitting by a window to look outside every-so often. Sitting on the velvet cushion, Tiberius pulled out a science book that was smuggled inside and cracked it open. Atticus whirred at the door, opening it with a small claw that Tiberius attached a couple of days ago. The bot liked to follow Tiberius wherever he went and opening the door all the time was tiresome. Adding the arms was easy. Sometimes Tiberius would hear his father mutter something about genius-kid under his breath.
After breezing through four books, Tiberius grew bored. If he couldn’t leave through the vent, perhaps he could leave through the side-door his father didn’t know he had discovered. Atticus whirred behind him, making a series of beeps that sounded like reprimanding.
“Would you calm down? I swear sometimes you’re like a worried nanny.” Tiberius rolled his eyes carefully opening his father’s office door. Usually he wouldn’t dare come in here. This was off-limits, no rebellious children allowed, but the side-door wasn’t used very often, and the least Tiberius could do is look around Olympus Heights. A lot of the pompous types lived here, including Ryan and Suchong. Tiberius had only met Suchong a couple of times before moving in with his father. He didn’t really remember his mother other than she was unpleasant and his father constantly called her a bitch under when he thought Tiberius wasn’t listening. The door was behind his father’s safe, which was sometimes difficult to move, but he managed it after a few minutes of huffing and puffing. As he was opening the door, Tiberius heard the front door open and close.
“Tiberius get down here! You know you’re not supposed to be in my office.”
Tiberius glared at Atticus, who beeped sheepishly. The bot had turned on the camera that would go to his father’s prototype handheld TV. Closing the door with a dramatic thud, Tiberius left the office and grouched down the stairs with his arms crossed. Fontaine waited at the bottom with an unimpressed look, clicking off the TV now that his troublemaking son was within sight.
“How many times do I have to tell you it’s too dangerous outside for you?” Fontaine began sternly, “It’s almost like you want to be taken away and hurt.”
“I just wanted to watch a movie,” Tiberius mumbled, trying to ignore the heat in his face. Okay, so he hadn’t really thought of that. He knew he wasn’t like other kids in a lot of ways, and that he was likely to be in trouble more often. Letting out a deep sigh, Fontaine placed a reluctant hand over his eyes.
“If you behave yourself, and I do mean behave, I will take you out this evening. Not to see a movie. We can eat at the Kashmir.”
Trying not to look too excited, Tiberius hastily rushed off to his book alcove to read and stay out of his father’s way until evening.
Suchong and Tenenbaum sat on the opposite side of the restaurant, keeping their heads down and faces hidden as they watched Fontaine and Subject ADAM talk over dinner. Subject ADAM was speaking quickly and excitedly, while Fontaine merely nodded every-so often to show he was listening.
“I don’t know how you could let him take the child,” Tenenbaum hissed at the Chinaman.
“It is not Suchong’s fault you did not want subject in different lab. Fontaine threatened to kill Suchong, and Suchong is not stupid,” the man protested, fixing his glasses as the two continued to spy.
“I need that child, Suchong,” Tenenbaum snipped, “That child is important in finding a cure for ADAM sickness.”
“Suchong knows, you have told Suchong many times,” Suchong complained, “Suchong doesn’t know how Tenenbaum plans on getting subject back.”
“That is where you come in, Suchong. You lost him; you will get him back for me. I need him alone, and if my information is correct, child is very curious about city.”
“Suchong won’t help you get subject from Fontaine. This Tenenbaum’s experiment. Child is always watched.”
Tenenbaum sighed, giving her colleague a disapproving glare.
“Just need to keep Fontaine busy with Ace-In-The-Hole. I will handle the rest.”