Chapter Sixty-Four

"Everyone is safe," Frisco comments into his mouth piece as he moves quickly to join Luke and Sonny who are heading into the elevator. For reasons unknown to Frisco, Luke has made only a cursory visit with Lucky and Laura, telling them, "Lucky, take care of your mother", while Sonny, after assuring himself that Brenda is safe, gives her a soul searching kiss and leaves Brenda stunned speechless.

"We're fine, Frisco," Reggie reports, but then adds, "I caught a glimpse of Robin earlier, but she wasn't placed with us."

"Don't worry, Reggie," Frisco assures him. "We'll find her." He goes to join Luke, and Sonny who have taken the elevator, not waiting for him.

Frisco speaks into his communicator, "Uh, Boss, our associates left ahead of me. They're both sort of half-cocked, if you ask me."

Luke and Sonny, meanwhile, have taken defensive postures, using the sides of the elevator as protection, until they are assured that there is no immediate danger. Then, stealthily crouching, both advance toward a set of steel doors that had formerly been open, but were now securely closed.

Before Luke can touch them, he hears, "Don't touch that, Luke."

Luke looks up to see Stefan and Jax, his arch enemies, dressed in black, both wielding guns entering from one of the side hallways.

"You gonna stop me? Why aren't you in there with Dr. Frankenstein and the other monsters?" Luke sneers.

"I'm on your side," Stefan tells him. "We're both working to stop my mother and her cohorts."

"And I'm supposed to believe you?" Luke chuckles mirthlessly.

Sonny speaks up. "Don't tell me. The blunder from down-under is working with you, too." He sighs, and adds, "Don't make me laugh. I'm not in the mood."

But, before he can make additional comments, Stefan and Jax dive for them, their silenced guns spitting death and rescue.

"What the??" Sonny asks as he pushes Jax off of him. Both men give disgusted looks, as do Luke and Stefan, but Luke, quickly understanding, sees the bodies of the men who lay dead on the floor. He looks astonished at Stefan who nods as Frisco exits the elevator.

"Damn!" Frisco grumbles, seeing the fallen bad guys, "You guys have all the fun." Then, he sees Luke and Sonny, and, judging from their bewildered expressions, says, "Boss, something tells me that you need to temporarily deputize these guys so they're officially on our side."

Stefan, a wry grin on his face, turns to Luke and Sonny. "Frisco is right. Until this operation is over, you're either WSB, or you take the elevator back up and stay with the others. We can't afford any personal vendettas getting in the way, either. Understood? Now, are you coming with me or..."

Shocked, Luke and Sonny answer as one. "We're in."

"Then, here's the plan...." Hmmmmmmm

Helena watches as Tony and Victor are unwillingly prepared for the cryogenic chambers. Both men are frightened nearly witless, not knowing if this is simply a means of Helena getting rid of them, or if she actually means to work a medical miracle on them.

"I'd take her advice," 'Ryan' advises with a knowing nod. "I mean, it's not like you have a lot to lose. You're getting iced one way or another tonight, so make it easy on yourselves."

Faison nods, appreciatively. "Indeed. All considerations have been taken to assure your future comfort."

Tracy can't resist adding her own comments. "We'll be thinking of you as frozen assets." She gives them a brilliant smile, while the attendants give both men injections.

"Something to relax you," the woman says in a precise British accent. "We wouldn't want you to have nasty nightmares while you're sleeping."

There's something in the tone, in the inflection, the voice that causes Faison to move quickly forward.

"Anna?" he cries.

Peeling off her face mask, she nods, gun leveled on him. "Faison, why did I know that you'd turn up here with this Dr. Frankenstein wannabe?"

"I'd drop the gun," Helena tells her casually. "Faison, you were correct in assuming that she would show up. No doubt Robert Scorpio is here, too."

"At your service," the other doctor smirks, revealing his face. "Now, if you two would just raise your hands...."

As they do so, Stefan, Jax, Luke and Sonny enter, all guns leveled on the group of villains.

"Hail, hail, the gang's all here," Luke mocks as he steps towards Helena. "Kind of overplayed your hand, this time, didn't you? It's over, Helena. Over. You're out of business for good this time."

Helena keeps smiling, as does Faison. "Mr. Spencer, you always underestimate me. But, it is comforting to know that you are so easy to read. Did you really think that I wouldn't understand the significance of the target on your shirt? You have always lacked subtlety, but your attempts at games-playing are amusing. And, as always, the rest of you have acted in a manner that is wonderfully predictable. Yes, I know about Tracy switching the gas canisters-indeed, she made my job easier. You see, I wanted you all down here, whole and undamaged, to become part of my ongoing projects. You are all creative, some genius material, some simply biologically excellent specimens."

Helena laughs, and strolls to Luke who is aghast. "Don't look so upset. You, of all people, should appreciate my efforts." To her son, Stefan, she says, "So good, so noble, so self-sacrificing-a pity that you inherited your father's traits. Yes, and, since this is over, you might as well know-James-Jamie Jacks was your father. Indeed, you and Mr. Jacks here are first cousins." Turning to Tracy who is uncomfortably aware that she's in deep trouble, Helena remarks, "Tracy, you'd have made a good partner if you weren't so double dealing." Helena smiles at 'Ryan' who smiles back. "Mr. Chamberlain, since you and Faison remain on my team, perhaps I should reward your loyalty. The lovely blonde you so admired is alive and well. She's yours."

"In your dreams," Luke says, his gun leveled at Helena. "You talk a good game, Helena, but that's all. What's to stop me from plugging you here and now?"

"This," she says, clicking a remote that she'd had hidden in a pocket. A side panel slides aside, revealing, to the mounting horror of nearly all the former hostages, still in the room. "Speak to them, Mr. Spencer. Ask them what little treat I have in store."

"Lucky?" Luke manages. "They've got Mom, and Brenda," Lucky tells him, his voice broken, and his face bruised. "I tried, Dad, but..." Hmmmmmm

Stay tuned!! What diabolical things are planned for the hostages, and what especially evil things are planned for Laura and Brenda?? Where is Robin??? Are we missing a few players???? Have our heroes been outmaneuvered?? Is this the end??? Hmmmmmmm