Fan Fiction: Liberatas: Uncompromised II - a story based on Equilibrium

by Mark Neiser 
Originally Published in January 2010

     “1….2…3…4…5…6…7…8…9…10” shouted the instructor.

     “Excellent work Preston.  Your moves are as precise as I have ever seen.  Your mastery of the Gun Kata is without question better than anyone’s I have seen since……well myself to say the least”

    “Thank you Commander Davidson.  It is well known that you are without question at the top of your class,” responded Preston.

    “I do admit that I am good but you may be better.  Why don’t we see who is better Preston?” asked Davidson.

    “Sir?”

    “I want you to duel me….using live ammunition John.”

    “But that is not allowed in the training, Sir.”

    “Yes in front of the other students you are correct, but this is your private lesson, no one will know but you and I.”

    “And what if I was to kill you or you kill me?”

    “A horrible accident then,” Davidson says

    ”I will not duel you sir.”

    “Then you will die!”

    And with this the Commander opened fire towards his student, as Preston moved quickly and proficiently out of the way of the bullets headed at him.  Preston moved left, then right, then raised his guns and returned fire putting his teacher on the defense.  His teacher was fast and as efficient as any Grammaton Cleric.  Quite possibly the best there is in the Tetragrammaton. 

    Left! Dodge!

    Right! Dodge!

    Down! Dodge! 

    Each of them firing and moving quickly out of the way of the other’s bullets.  Then Davidson began a roll left and Preston saw this as an opportunity.  While firing and keeping his body away from the trajectory of bullets Preston moved forward, rolled quickly and came to his feet, his guns at the ready.  When he rose he was at a face off with his Commander.
 
“Go ahead Preston shoot!”

    “Sir this must end.  It is against the rules of the Tetragrammaton.”

    “I’m your commanding officer and I gave you an order!”

    “I will not follow that order, Sir!” Preston said as he lowered his guns, turned his back and walked away.

    “You walk away from your Commander?  I can have you reprimanded for that!”

    Preston continued to walk away not saying anything.  He could hear his Commander shouting as he walked out of the dojo thinking about what had just happened.  
 
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That was six years ago.  Five years ago Preston had to kill Commander Davidson. He went awol and became a Sense Offender.  His partner and mentor, Errol Partridge, helped take him down.  Since then things have been peaceful in Libria.  Cleric John Preston’s son was born shortly after the incident and his family and Libria have gone on as normal.   In the back of his mind however,  Preston remembers the words Cleric Davidson told him about a resistance to the Father beginning.

    “Good morning Preston,” a familiar voice rang out as John entered the Equilibrium Center.

    “Hello Errol.  Filling your prozium doses?” asked John.

    “Yes, I was almost empty, and I figured now was a good time as I headed to work.  I see you had the same idea.”

    “I stop every Monday morning to make sure I have enough for the week. You know that though,” replied Preston.

    “Yes, always precise you are John.  Ever since I have known you.  I knew I’d find you here, it’s another reason I am here,“ Partridge answered. 

    “What’s so urgent that it could not wait until I arrived at Headquarters?”

    “Have you not heard the scanner reports of what has happened this morning?”

    “No, I had not turned on my scanners yet.  What’s going on Errol?” asked John.
 
“Terrorists, inside Libria. Twenty-five are people being held hostage.  It all happened in the last fifteen minutes.   They are held up in the main entrance building that leads to the old shut down Prozium factories.  I heard the call just as I arrived at Equilibrium.  The Tetragrammaton has asked for you and I specifically to lead the operation.  As you know they think highly of you and I, and the Father wants this matter resolved quickly, without incident, and as quietly as possible. “

    “How did they get twenty five people and move them so quickly to the old factories?” asked Preston.

    “That’s not known at the moment.  Most likely it was a bus convoy of people and being early in the morning, they struck us unprepared.  If the people of Libria were to find out that terrorists have struck inside the city it could……well let’s not find out.  Shall we head to the site?”

    “Yes let’s go,” responded Preston.
 
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Meanwhile….

    “You know they will just send Clerics after us right?”

    “Would you calm down Jackson!  I told you I had it all worked out.”

    “Yeah, well I’ve seen Clerics in action man,” hollered Jackson, “You don’t fuck with them, they are super fast, very precise, you know all this Connor.  But yet you had to talk me into this.   Now you’re going to get us both killed or sent to the incenerary.”

    “Yeah well it will be better than the life we are living or the life they make these people in Libria live.  No feeling, no emotion, it’s not right man and you know it,” Connor said sternly.

     “It’s the reason we joined the Resistance”, he continued.  “When I met Jurgen and he showed me things I had never seen before, I knew then that our lives would change, and risks would have to be taken.  What we are doing here today is the most important thing we have ever done!”

    “But taking innocent people hostage!”

    “Jackson, remember the plan,” whispers Connor, “None of them are to get hurt.  We are the diversion.”

    “Yeah so we stand here wait for the Clerics to take us in, while you’re buddies do their thing.  Yeah I remember,” said Jackson.  “I remember you talked me into getting off the dose, and now this, and it’s getting all fucked up.  And in a few minutes when they are arrived what are we going to do.”

     “You have got to control yourself.  Maybe it was a bad idea to take you off the dose since you can’t seem to handle it!” yelled Connor.

     “No I’m ok Connor.  I’m ok I just want things to go right,” he said.

     “Just leave that to Seamus, he will take care of it.”

     “He will huh?  You don’t even know this guy.  And where did he learn how to do all the things he knows, huh?’ asked Jackson.

     “Argh, would you just trust me!” shouted Connor.  “I wish you could have been there from the beginning with Jurgen then you would understand everything better.  Seamus has been there with them, training and learning as we have now started to do.  Just trust me it will be ok, Seamus will handle it.”

     ‘Did I hear my name?” said a bearded man in a long dark coat as he entered.

     “Jackson is worried things are going to go wrong Seamus that’s all,” responded Connor.

    “It’s taken care of,” said Seamus with a smile. “When they enter through those doors, they will find a surprise waiting for them.

     “See Jackson, all taken care of,“ said Connor.
 
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“Clerics, we are nearing the location,”

    “Any new reports Officer?” asked Preston.  The convoy continued to approach, a Sweeper transport in front of them, the Clerics in the vehicle in the middle, and another vehicle full of Sweepers behind them.  This area of Libria was very desolate and had been shut down when the new Prozium factories opened the previous year.  There isn’t much security in place in these parts, simply because the need wasn’t there for it.  Now perhaps an over looked mishap by the ruling body of Libria.

    “No sir”, the Officer responded.  “Most of the security cameras that we’re in this area either simply don’t work or we’re taken out when they salvaged some parts in the area.  The only report we have is that two citizens did see a van enter the area, but no word on how many hostiles.  We only know they have 25 hostages because of the video sent to us.”

    “Video?” asked Partridge, as he and Preston looked at each other.

    “Why did we not see the video?” Preston questioned.

    “Commander Vaughn said to keep it classified, even from you,” the Officer told them.  “We are two blocks from the building sir.”

    “Ok stop the convoy.  Partridge let’s discuss this outside.”

    Preston and Partridge step out, walk around the side of the vehicle, both eyeing each other, knowing what each one is thinking.

    “This doesn’t seem right, does it John?” asked his partner.

    “No, it doesn’t and I can feel it.  Why would they hold information from us?” pondered Preston.

     “I’m going to call Vaughn and ask,” said Partridge.  Errol then walked over to the driver’s side of the vehicle and opened the door.  “Get Vaughn on the comms now!”

    “He asked not to be bothered sir, he said to get the mission done and report in!”

    Partridge then pulled his gun from his holster and aimed it at the Officer’s head.  “Get him on the comm now, that’s an order from a Cleric of the Tetragrammaton, if you don’t I will shoot you!”

    “Errol what are you doing?” shouted Preston.  “Stand down Cleric!”

    The Officer handed the comm unit to Partridge, and he lowered his weapon.  Preston looked on, not sure what to make of what just occurred.  He stood and watched as his partner talked to Commander Vaughn.

    After a couple of minutes, Errol handed the comm, back to the Officer and walked over to Preston.  “I don’t like this John,” he said.

    “What did the Commander say?” asked Preston.

    “He said Father gave the order to not let anyone see the video.  This just isn’t right.”

      “I agree.  Something is strange about all this.  No tactical on who is in the building, no intelligence on how this happened.  My intuition does tell me that something is not right,” said Preston.

     “Well, what do you suggest then John?” Partridge asked his partner.
 
  “Officer!  Send in a team of sweepers.  Do not engage any hostiles, report back what you find,” ordered Preston.

    “We as Clerics are suppose to be the first line of defense John, you know that,” enquired his partner.

    “You’re correct.  Normally we are, but in this situation this seems to be the best option.”

    “So you are risking those men’s lives to get us intel that our Commander’s are not giving us?” asked Partridge.

    “Yes.  They are trained and have their duties.  If you do not like my decision you can take it up with the Council later.  Officer, is your team ready?”

    “Yes Cleric,” he responded.

    “Send them in.”

    The Sweeper team began their approach of the building.  As they did Preston and his partner stood waiting on new reports.  The Sweeper Officer approached the Clerics, “There’s a call coming in for you, Sir,” speaking to Cleric Preston.

    “Thank you, I’ll take it on the comm unit in our vehicle.”  Preston sat inside the car, and turned on the conference caller.  A familiar face appeared on the screen, it was Commander Vaughn.

    “Cleric, I understand that you questioned my authority on keeping the video from these terrorists classified?” Vaughn asked.

    “Sir, my partner and I we’re simply trying to attest the entire situation so that we know what we are facing.  Something doesn’t seem right about this, and not having the proper intel to do our job was our concern.”

    “Let me clarify myself then Preston, of what your concern should be”, Vaughn stated.  ‘You’re job is to resolve this as quickly as possible.  Let myself and the council deal with other concerns.  Do I make myself clear Cleric?”

    “Yes, sir, perfectly clear.”

    “Good”, said Vaughn. “ Now finish this and report back to me when the mission is complete.”

    Just as the call ended, John looked up to step out of the vehicle when a huge ball of fire erupted in front of his eyes, as an explosion blasted out across the sky.  Smoke bellowed the area, as Preston scrambled to find Partridge. 

    “John!” his partner yelled.

    “Right here,” as Preston saw his partner.  “What just happened?”

    “The Sweeper team was fixing to enter the building and when they opened the door it exploded.  It must have been wired.  The smoke is clearing now, let’s have a closer look.”

    The Clerics approached the building, seeing many dead Sweepers from the explosion scattered across the road, and walking around debris as they got closer.  They approached the entrance of the building, both drawing their weapons as they entered.  Preston went to the right, Partridge to the left, in front of them was a large warehouse, mostly open for storing large containers.  There we’re walkways above them with sets of stairs on both sides, and what looked like a small office on the second floor. The two Clerics scanned the perimeters, keeping their vigilant eyes on their surroundings, but so far nothing.  They met back in the middle of the building, seeing no one around them.
 
  “Strange, where are they?” asked Partridge.

    Preston stared back at his partner, not having the answer, “Something isn’t right here.  Let’s go back outside.”

    The Clerics began to walk back towards the entrance when a huge shadow of a man came trough the entrance.  His hands flew forward releasing an object towards the Clerics,  Preston’s own hands reacted quickly, his arm cocked forward, his finger pulling the trigger, firing a single shot, right between the eyes of the big man.  The object hit the floor in front of them, and a light flash released.  It was a flash bomb, temporary blinding the Clerics.

    As there vision returned, they found themselves surrounded by about twenty men with machine guns, and above them on the walkways another twenty men armed.  The Grammaton Clerics stood vigilantly, examining their surroundings.

    “You have all just made a big mistake,” said Partridge.

    “Have we Cleric?” said a voice in the group.

    “You are all under arrest for the crimes of illegal weapon possession, a Sense Offense in itself, and for drawing said weapons on Clerics of the Tetragrammaton” said Preston.  “Surrender now, and you will be given a fair trial by the courts and sentenced.”

     The voice began to laugh.  “Fair trial? If only that were true.  There is no justice in Libria and no freedom.  But a Cleric would not understand that.  He is only does as he is told,” the voice continued.

     “Show yourself!”  shouted Partridge.

     “I’m right up here.”

      Preston and Partridge looked up to see a man standing unarmed, his hands at his side.  “Who are you?” asked Preston.
 
  “My name is Seamus.  At one time I was a father of two children and I had a wife.  Then one day I met a man who made me realize that none of it was real.  That prozium made everything blinded and took the reality of things away from me.  Emotion, feelings, knowing what it is to be human.”

     “You will surrender”, said Preston, “Or you and your men will all be killed.”

     “We won’t surrender and some of us may die yes, but what is happening here today is more important than you can understand Cleric,” said Seamus.  He then looked over at Connor and nodded at him.  “Goodbye clerics.”

     Seamus stepped back as Connor opened fire on the Clerics.  Preston instinctly moved from the bullets path and fired a shot striking Connor in the head.  Partridge followed his partners move by taking out the lights above with several shots.  The room went quiet as the forty men stood in the dark for a few seconds.

     Emergency lighting turned on in a corner leaving the room mostly dark.  The men then realized they were in horrible trouble.  The Grammaton Clerics were no longer in the center of the room!
 
“Shit! Everyone get out now!” someone shouted, but it was too late.  Shots rang out from what seemed like all corners of the room as the men scattered in fear.  The terrorists were falling from the balcony and dropping to the floor below.  Those on the floor falling as bullets crossed their paths as they tried to escape, striking them down with absolute precision.
 
The gun kata training of the Clerics puts every bullet to use, not wasting a single shot and killing everyone in the room in a matter of minutes.  Once the shouting and bullets stopped, Preston and Partridge walked across and met in the middle of the room again.
 
“Did you see Seamus?” asked Preston.

     “No,” responded Partridge, “And I’m pretty sure I didn’t kill him either.”

     “Neither did I.  Let’s go use the citizen databank in the truck.’

     Sweepers moved in to search the building as the Clerics went to the vehicle.  As they did a series of explosions began from in the distance.  The old prozium factories were exploding one by one. 

     “Clear the building!” yelled Partridge but it was too late.  The building exploded killing the Sweeper team that had entered.  “Dammit!” exclaimed Partridge.

     Preston stared at his partner for a moment, shocked at the outburst.  “I think you need to take a dose Errol.”

     Sighing, Partridge said, “Yes, I think you are right John.  Forgive me for that.”

     Preston nodded his acknowledgement as Partridge took out his Prozium injector.  “There’s nothing we can do the old factories were useless anyways.  If they are trying to make some kind of statement then I’m not sure what it is.   I will call in for another sweeper team to come double check the area just in case.  For now let’s have a look at that database.”

     “Yes let’s”, said Partridge as he injected the Prozium into his neck.

     Sitting in the vehicle Preston tells Partridge of his findings.  “Seamus O'Clancy is his name.  That’s him for sure without the beard.  It says here he was presumably killed three years ago in a zeppelin crash.”

     “There’s only been one zeppelin crash in the last three years.  The one that hit the northwest Equilibrium Center.  It was believed to be an accident”, stated Partridge.

     “I’m guessing it wasn’t an accident”, said Preston.  “It appears to be a cover up to hide this man’s death and they most likely hit the center on purpose.”

     “Presumably you are guessing, John?” asked Partridge.

     “Yes presumably.  But first Commander Davidson talking about a resistance and now what happened here today.  Plus our own commander not sharing evidence with us.  I can’t help but…..”, thought John. 

     “The council will handle it as they see fit John and if the Tetragrammaton are needed they will call us.  And since he is inside Libria’s walls it will be no time at all before he is caught.”

     “Yes you are correct”, Preston said.  “Let’s report back in.” 

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Epilogue:

     In a small dark room basement somewhere in Libria:

     “He’s the one Jurgen.  Cleric John Preston.”

     “How do you know Seamus?” asked Jurgen.

     “You can see it in his eyes.  He can be the one that helps us.  He is not as uncompromised as he appears to be.  All that killing and death the Clerics deal with.  They can only take so much even with the dose.  He can be our champion”, said Seamus.
 

     “We will watch him then.  Learn more about him and when the time is right we will set things in motion so that the council sends him directly to us”, said Jurgen.  “Seamus you have done a great service for the resistance.  I have a new assignment for you now.  I need you to leave Libria and begin operations on the outside so that the events I mentioned can be set in motion.”

     “And what are you going to do Jurgen?” Seamus asked.

     “I’m going to continue our work here, from inside Libria”, said Jurgen. “I will continue to build the underground and make the resistance stronger.  In time Libria will be free.  Take what you need to begin and a small group of men if you need and from there, you know what to do.”

     “I will Jurgen.  And I will see you again soon when we are free.”

     Jurgen nodded as Seamus walked out the door.
  
Author's Commentary - Originally Written In January 2010
 
So here it is, my long awaited follow up to my first short story.  Only 7 years in the waiting!!  Well I hope you enjoyed it and stay tuned, there will be more…..eventually. 
 
So my prequel series continues as we see Preston and Partridge working together as Clerics.  Very uncompromised at the time, but both showing slight hints of emotion and underlying after thoughts of their position in society.  The first chapter was written in first person from Preston's perspective and parts of it in third person.  This time almost the entire story is from a third person perspective.  no reason for this, it's just the way it turned out.  So here are some random comments on my story:

n      It takes place approximately six years later and things have been at peace.  

n      The title Liberatas is Latin for liberate which means to set free.  Appropriate I think for the beginnings of the resistance.

n      The idea of terrorism inside Libria is nothing new when the film occurs.  The center in the movie was shut down because of it, but in this story, the Tetragrammaton kinda covers it up because it’s still new at the time.  They don’t want to admit that there is terror in their perfect society and that a resistance is beginning.  Maybe more hints of this in my next story!

n      In case you don’t know Seamus is seen in the film for about three minutes at the beginning.  Played by Dominic Purcell, I have used him and given him a larger role and a first name to tie my stories together with the film.  The character's name is confirmed in an interview with Purcell before the movie's release.

n      The old prozium factories being destroyed is a direct nod to the other ones being destroyed at the end of the movie of course, and the resistance obviously means this as a precursor for what is to come. 

n      Jurgen makes an appearance as he is beginning to develop the underground and get the resistance rolling. 

n      The standoff in the factory with them facing 40 men is just a nod to my love of action movies, and I love stand offs in movies.  The intensity of a John Woo stand off or something like that gets my blood boiling when watching a film.  Only here the 40 men are up against two bad asses who take them out in no time.

n      The ending action may have seemed abrubt, but even in the film the action only lasts about 8 minutes total even though it’s extremely awesome.   I also purposely ended the Clerics story for now with them leaving the scene to head back in because it is all that was necessary for part two, even if it seemed like a quick jump to the epilogue.  I had another scene in there but it just got long winded.  Once the trilogy is complete, I will release a “Author’s Cut” with it in it perhaps.

n        Connor is a nod to Connor MacCleod of Highlander.  In Uncompromised I the sword fight was a nod to Highlander so the tributes continue!



 
 
 

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