Chapter 10: The Truth is Revealed! Chris Learns Alan's Secret
Alan frowned when he passed a clock in the hallway he was heading down. It was past 5:30. Almost an hour had gone by since his dad had made the threat, and now he only had two hours to get his friend down into the basement level where he was likely to be killed.
He had already gone back to the Research Clinic to look for Chris, all the while keeping an eye out for Tyrant. He had even managed to find a paging system and page the S.T.A.R.S. member, but to no avail. If Chris had been anywhere in that particular Research Clinic, he would have heard and answered.
So, thinking of no better place to search, Alan had gone back to the main building.
He had encountered a few monsters and zombies along the way, but they had been easy to kill or escape. At least he hadn't come across any of those hunters or Tyrant.
The memory made him wince. He was not at all looking forward to another encounter with that thing.
If I were Chris, where would I be? Alan asked himself silently.
The question was not easy to answer. He barely knew Chris Redfield and was not at all familiar with his habits. But it was reasonable to assume he'd be looking for Claire.
Now he was sweeping the first floor in his search.
He'd gone almost the entire length of the building with only the moans of the occasional zombie to keep him company when he entered a lobby.
A dead zombie decorated the floor lying in a huge bloody pool. It was fatally wounded by gunshots to the head.
This was a clue. Zombies didn't just shoot themselves and since Claire was incapacitated at the moment, it left only Chris or Wesker as possible killers unless someone else was around.
It was unlikely that Wesker had come this way, so Alan figured there was pretty good chance that this was Chris's kill.
His eyes scanned the room, looking for anymore clues.
Casually, he walked over to a door in the side of the room and pulled it open.
Just as quickly, he closed it.
The room was teaming with zombies!
Nobody would be stupid enough to try and go in there! Alan's logic pointed out, He must have went some other way.
There was no way to go through that room without shooting several zombies and emptying several clips of ammo.
When Alan turned, it was to see a hunter standing directly in front of him!
He raised his gun, preparing for the attack and ready to fire, but the monster didn't move an inch.
It just stood hunched over with deadly white-clawed hands dangling to either side of it's mutated ape-like body. It's mouth was open slightly and salivating, and it's red eyes were locked onto Alan.
Yet it didn't move.
It seemed to be waiting for something.
Alan kept the gun aimed but did not open fire.
It's not attacking me, I'm not going to give it a reason to. These things are hard to kill with handgun bullets and in such close quarters it'd be likely to slice me open within my first couple shots, Alan thought, Wait a minute. Earlier back Dad said he had control over these. Is it possible they recognize me as being one of his?
The theory was appealing, and it would be well worth finding out.
"Go!" Alan demanded, mustering up his best giving-orders-to-hunters voice.
He pointed to the doors he'd first came through.
Much to his surprise, the hunter turned and ran off in that direction obediently until it was behind several doors and out of sight.
Okay, that turned out rather well.
No sooner had he completed the thought than there was a terrible crashing noise behind him like someone was trying to bulldoze their way right through the wall.
He spun around on a dime to see Tyrant staring at him from a smashed doorway; splinters of wood raining down around him.
"Seriously man, did you miss the invention of the doorknob?" Alan shot.
The thing just glared at him menacingly with those horrible bloodred eyes.
Alan shrank back a bit, more than a little scared. He was terrified.
"Um…I don't suppose you take orders from my dad too, do you?"
Tyrant crouched a bit, preparing to charge in that insanely fast way of his.
"Didn't think so."
He waited until he was almost sure the monstrosity was ready to go, then stepped out of it's way.
Tyrant blew past in an ugly blur. It sounded like a train had hit the reception desk.
Wasting no time, Alan raced down the hallway connecting to the lobby and darted into the first room he came to.
A zombie grabbed his shoulder. He used that to his advantage and rammed the virus carrier so hard it went sprawling across the bed of the personal dormitory he was in.
"I so do not have time for you!" He spat, as if the zombie could actually comprehend what he was saying.
Not far off, he could hear the Tyrant thundering after him.
Desperate, he threw open the room's laundry chute and crawled on in. It was just big enough, but it was a direct drop.
"Yikes!" Alan yelped as he found himself falling face first down a dark shaft.
After what seemed like falling a mile down in total darkness, he hit something soft.
Almost immediately, he heard the click of a gun being cocked.
"Don't shoot!" He lifter his face up from the dirty fabric of the laundry to see a very amused Chris smirking at him.
"Alan?!" He was laughing as he lowered the gun, "What the heck happened to you?"
"Tyrant." Alan mumbled as he pulled himself out of the laundry bin. He plucked a pair of underwear off his head and threw it down in disgust. "That thing doesn't know when to quit. And what's even more insulting is I didn't even hear it sneaking up on me. How can something that big just sneak around like that? I feel like I must need hearing-aids or something. By the way, where are we?"
The room they were in now appeared to be some sort of gigantic washroom with several laundry chutes each leading to different medium-sized laundry bins. Washers and driers were all around in neat little rooms. None appeared to be functioning.
"We're in B-3." Chris flashed a grin as he pulled out a map. "Got the map to this level. We need to get to the Greek Myth room. I found this door to a very important room, but I need a ship crest to get in. Since it's the ship from 'The Odyssey', I figured the Greek Myth room would be the best place to search."
"A reasonable assumption." Alan answered. He considered telling Chris everything right then and there.
" Chris, I…" He stopped, faltering. What if this was the wrong choice? What if Chris didn't believe him? What if, what if…his mind fogged up with doubt. It wasn't quite six yet. He still had a little time to think things through.
Chris eyed him suspiciously. "What? What is it?"
"Nothing." Alan muttered, trying not to sound like he had something to hide, "I'm just glad I found you."
"Yeah, well we have to find Claire. There's a madman on the loose around here and she could be in danger."
Chris turned and started for a little wooden door on the opposite end of the room. Alan followed, anxiety rising.
"Madman?" He tried to make it sound like a casual question.
"Yes. He goes by the name of Wesker. Maybe Enrico told you about him? He used to be captain of S.T.A.R.S. before he betrayed us. He has some kind of virus or something that makes him very powerful and fast. And he wants me dead. We're going to have to be very careful."
"Sounds like it." But Alan was wondering how Chris had found out about Wesker being here.
Probably came across some paper somewhere. Yeah, that has to be it.
If a confrontation had occurred, it was very doubtful he and Chris would be having this conversation.
Chris opened the small wooden door and flicked the light switch. Light flooded over a stone staircase descending into water that went almost halfway up to yet another door at the bottom.
"Well, this shouldn't be a problem." Chris proclaimed as he started down.
Alan was less enthusiastic. "Yeah, if you're a fish." He muttered, following.
Alan was not prepared for Chris's sudden pause at the door and nearly collided with him.
"What's the holdup?"
"Nothing. It's just that the last time I went into a flooded basement there were a bunch of sharks in the water." Chris said reflectively.
"And you're thinking that maybe history will repeat itself?"
Chris didn't answer, he just opened the door.
"Sweet." Alan mumbled.
Sharks. Just what they didn't need. And it wasn't helping the already tense teenager cope with the fact that his friends' lives were in his hands. He wasn't in a particularly good mood, and it seemed like bad news just kept popping up everywhere.
The whole room that they stepped into was flooded. The fluorescent lights kept fading in and out, casting the area in various shades of shadow and light. A huge broken aquarium was the highlight of the room.
"I don't even want to know what was in there." Chris announced dryly as he waded up to his waist in the water; starting for the door that the map said led into the Greek Myth room.
"Then you probably shouldn't look behind you!" Alan yelled as a huge dorsal fin broke the stillness of the water.
"Shark! Man, I hate being right about these kinds of things!" Chris spewed.
The dark torpedo shape started after him.
Chris fired into the water a few times sending up sprays of white foam.
The shark didn't seem to notice.
Thinking quickly, Alan drew a grenade from his side pack , pulled the pin, and tossed the thing into the water directly in front of the shark.
The water suddenly exploded in a spray of red and white as the shark reared it's damaged head.
Now Alan was wading through, quickly gaining on Chris.
"Nice work!" His comrade cheered, but it was bit too soon for celebration.
The shark was up and gaining fast!
Now it was Chris's turn to pull a grenade from his side pack.
"Watch out!" He yelled as he threw the grenade for the shark.
Alan moved safely out of the way, but like an idiot the shark opened it's jaws and snatched the grenade in it's oversized mouth.
The result was instantaneous.
Chunks of shark meat exploded from the water and rained down in a spray of crimson. A piece hit Chris's shirt.
"Hey! How come none of this stuff ever hits you?"
"I'm just lucky, I guess." But deep down, Alan was feeling anything but lucky. Should he tell Chris or try to think of something else? He felt like screaming. The clock was ticking and he didn't know what to do!
Chris waded into the Greek Myth room with Alan right behind him. On impulse, Alan shut the door. Just in case.
The Greek Myth room was much larger than a large living room and the marble walls were lined with pictures of Greek heroes and heroines, gods and goddesses, monsters and lambs. Many of these figures were also depicted in the form of large statues posed throughout the room which was split into two separate sections by a huge marble wall jutting over halfway out. Other than the statues and pictures, they really couldn't see much because the floor was under three feet of water.
"Okay, so what should we be looking for?" Alan asked while he studied a painting of Hercules throttling an enormous lion.
"A little wooden or metal ship cut-out about this big." Chris held his hands apart indicating about the size of a small dinner plate, "I sure hope it's not under the water."
"Me too." Alan began inspecting the pictures closer.
One was of Zeus and Hera: King and Queen of Olympus.
Another portrayed the Trojan horse.
Yet another had the image of a huge seven-headed hydra guarding a golden fleece.
So far, none of the portraits appeared to have a certain order or pattern.
Chris was examining the statues, moving from one to another in the order in which they caught his fancy. No apparent order to them, either.
"We should probably be looking for stuff from 'The Odyssey'." Chris pointed out, "After all, it is Odysseus's ship."
Okay, Odyssey. Alan remembered that from school. He searched around until he found a picture of Odysseus's ship sailing past Scylla and Charybdis.
"Hey Chris, I think I found something."
"Really?" The water sloshed and churned as Chris made his way over to where Alan was standing., "Let me see."
There was a ship in the painting alright, and it was in the same position as the ship from the door to the Main Computer Systems room. About the same size, too.
"Hmm." Chris reached out and pressed on the painted ship. It sunk into the picture, and the whole painting moved aside to reveal a secret compartment in which a small wooden ship was laying.
"I knew it!" He barked gleefully, "There's always something up with the portraits!"
Alan was about to ask Chris what he meant when an earsplitting roar interrupted.
Both men froze, suddenly feeling very nervous.
"I think we should be heading back now." Chris said.
"I think that's a good idea." Alan agreed.
Wesker strode through the passages of B-3 muttering to himself about how unfortunate the situation was.
As it turned out, not only were both Alexia and her mentally disturbed brother at this facility, but their teenaged son as well. Worse, they had somehow managed to free their daughter Alexis, and now there was a whole gaggle of Ashfords on the loose. It only added to his frustration.
That, and the fact that HCF's few survivors--all of them were Wesker's underlings--had seemed to be in a state of total panic and therefore could not be heavily relied upon to carry out orders. From them he had learned just how serious the situation was.
All the B.O.W.s were now free to roam the island. Zombies were everywhere, and a couple of tyrants had escaped. Not the natural order of things. And most of them were blaming the Ashfords.
Wesker had tried to calm them down a bit by saying that the situation was being handled and he would be contacting them shortly with arrangements to leave the island.
Of course, he purposely failed to mention that the only escape arrangements he would be making would be for himself. Let those peons take care of their own problems. He had bigger fish to fry. Namely the destruction of Chris Redfield.
Wesker was on his way to the elevator that would take him back up to B-1 when he heard some shouting and the opening and closing of some doors. He strained to listen and could just make out Chris's voice along with Alan's.
He smiled in spite of himself. At least that was going to plan.
He glanced at his watch. It was a quarter past six. It would be a killer to wait until seven-thirty. Perhaps he could just follow them around for awhile? Without their knowledge, of course.
It would be most interesting to see how his son would act under such circumstances. And it was not like Claire would be going anywhere soon.
Decided, Wesker adjusted his shades and headed for the sounds of Chris and Alan.
Chris sighed in relief when he set foot upon dry floor--ship crest held firmly in his hand.
But as happy as he was to be out of the water, Alan did not feel at all relieved. I have to do it. I have to tell him. It's the only way I have even a chance of saving them both. Besides, Chris is older and more experienced than me. Maybe he'll pick up on something I may have overlooked.
Alan followed Chris up the stairs and through a few doors while he thought about how to word his speech.
They had just entered a room labeled 'Automatic Supplies Room' when Alan gently grabbed Chris by the shoulder in a gesture for him to stop.
There were no monsters in this room, now would be the perfect chance.
"What?!" Chris jumped as if he'd been grabbed by a zombie.
He turned to face Alan, his features twisted into a classic look of both surprise and suspicion.
Alan frowned. This wasn't going to be easy.
"Look, Chris, there's something I have to tell you. I don't know how you're going to take this, but the truth is--I'm Wesker's son."
Chris raised his eyebrows, but he actually didn't look all that surprised.
"You…you've gotta be kidding me!" He gushed.
"I'm not." Alan said point-blankly. He reached into his pocket, fetched his sunglasses, and slid them on. "Remind you of anyone? Now, before you decide to do anything drastic, just listen to what I have to say. I know where your sister is. I came upon her earlier when we were separated. She needs our help. Da….I mean…Wesker, has her chained up in a torture chamber. Don't worry, she's alright. For now."
"So this was all a setup?" Chris raged. He aimed a punch for Alan's face.
Alan dodged in the nick of time, and the blow connected only with empty air.
Oh, this is so not going how I had hoped!
"No! I swear, I'm on your side! I had nothing to do with any setups!"
Initial half-shock had been replaced with anger. Alan could see it all over Chris's face.
Chris was not convinced. "Why should I believe you?!"
"Because!" Alan challenged, "I'm the only one who wants to save Claire as much as you do! If you really care about her, you'll listen to what I have to say."
Chris relaxed about one hair. He was still glaring at Alan distrustfully.
"If you like Claire so much then why didn't you do something?" His voice was getting calmer now, but it was still about as gentle as iron nails.
"You think I didn't try?!" Alan shot back, "Of course I tried to help her! But you see, my dad was there, too, and I don't think superhuman viruses run in the family. If they do, it skipped a generation because I totally got my butt kicked! My father more or less told me that he was going to kill Claire unless I brought you to him by seven-thirty. He said that if I did, he'd let Claire go, but I don't really believe him."
Chris's anger seemed to fade away. A kind of awkward, sorry expression took it's place.
"Really?" He managed, almost seeming embarrassed by his earlier behavior.
"Well, I'm certainly not making any of it up." Alan replied, tension slipping away from his voice. This was good. Chris was staring to come around, and maybe they could think of a way to free Claire without anyone having to get killed.
"Just because I'm Wesker's son doesn't mean I'm in cahoots with him. In fact, if I didn't consider you a friend, why would I bother telling you any of this? I could simply turn you over to my dad and be done with it. He'd be very pleased with me, I'm sure. But no, I wanted to save both Claire and you, so I decided to let you in on the loop. I know you can't stand my dad. I knew you probably wouldn't trust me if you ever learned the truth about me, that's why I kept my secret up until now. But now circumstances are desperate, and the truth of the matter is: I just can't find a way out of this without anyone getting killed. I need your help. There's no one else I can trust."
Chris was speechless for a whole ten seconds. He looked utterly amazed, as if he didn't quite know what to say. Then a small smile lit up his face. He understood.
"Well, since you put it that way, yeah. I guess you can trust me."
"Truce?" Alan held out his hand.
"Truce." Chris agreed. He grabbed Alan's hand and shook it.
It was short-lived.
It was lucky that they were almost in the center of the room, because just then the door flew open with such force it sounded like a thunderbolt had hit.
Wesker was standing in the threshold, arms crossed and looking mightily pissed off.
"Oh, I don't think this truce is going to last long." He growled in a dangerously low voice, "No. I can't see it lasting for more than ten seconds."
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