by Henry Wyckoff
Crossover: XF, DW (4th Doctor), HL, ST:Voy, and the world of David Eddings

Chapter 11

The Best Laid Plans...

The two killers rode up on their bikes. Two grizzly bikers weren't an uncommon sight around those parts, along with the homeless, hippies, and others of similar appearance.

"They're in that house over there," noted Thanatos.

"I see three outside," said Chuck. "One of them is FBI. The other two...? I don't know, but I remember seeing the man when the man came in."

"Of course. Do you want to take the inside or the outside?" A moment of thought. "I'll take the inside. Do you want to take the lead?"

"We'll go together."

Chuck shrugged. "Let's do it!"

They didn't quite sneak up to the house, but they didn't blow a fanfare either. All in all, nobody noticed their coming. Sometimes being mortal had its own advantages.

* * * *

Zedar looked away. In his time, he'd interrogated many people of all walks of life to get the information he needed. He wasn't like the other Disciples of Torak, who tortured for the fun of doing it: Zedar was a utilitarian who believed in doing what needed to be done.

This interrogation was tame by all standards. Perhaps if this device that the Doctor used were available in his home world, the art of interrogation might become civilized, so to speak. He didn't know how this technological device worked, but he had a feeling that if he had a few years to work with the concepts presented by the Doctor, he could come up with a similar means of producing information without the need of technology.

He sensed, rather than knew, that Chuck was approaching. It wasn't a certain feeling either, like knowing that you feel hot or cold. It wasn't a visual picture you see in your head when you know that two plus two equals four. It was more of a reflexive jump as your nerves sense something before your brain can even process the signals.

Zedar didn't say anything, but instead went to the window. He saw nothing.

Sarah stood next to him. "Yeah. I'm bored too."

He smiled, "Consider yourself fortunate. I would rather be bored at an interrogation than sickened. I think that you might rather that as well."

"You're right." She smiled too, holding out her hand. "We haven't had the chance to be properly introduced. I'm Sarah."

"I'm Zedar."

Sarah frowned, "Is that Hungarian?"

Zedar chuckled softly, "You have never heard of my homeland, and probably never will." He shivered as the import of that statement sank in. His homeland, forever beneath the waves because his Master, Torak, had split the world so that the other Gods could not return the Orb which he had taken. Not that it worked in the long run.

"I'm sorry." Maybe she saw a different meaning of his statement than he intended, but she saw a look of sorrow on his face. She didn't pursue the question.

Both looked out at the traffic.

* * * *

Janeway looked at Powys, "So in practical terms, then, Powys... what would you suggest that we do? Don't talk to one another? Have our memories removed? Kill ourselves so as not to disrupt the space-time continuum?"

Powys laughed until tears came. "Don't take it the wrong way, but you're not that important! As for the solution to this collision? I don't know. I'm just pointing out that this is a fine mess we're in."

Methos snorted. "So why did you bring it up then?"

He smiled. "No reason. I was bored and just needed to talk to someone."

It was that moment that Chuck emerged with a drawn gun. "You need excitement? How's this?" The gun was clip-loaded and equipped with a large silencer. He fired several rounds at Jan, Methos, Powys, and Janeway. He was fast enough to shoot Jan, Methos, and Powys twice through the heart. But by the time he reached Janeway, however, two seconds had passed and so she was able to fall to the ground with her phaser drawn. By default, it was set to stun, so he all he got was a solid blast to the chest that sent him flying back into a tree. He gun fell out of his hands en route.

However strong this blast was, it didn't knock Chuck out. It just pissed him off enough to pull out a spare gun. This one didn't have a silencer, which was probably why he didn't fire quite yet. "Drop it. I don't normally kill ladies or children, but if you don't drop it, I might change the rule."

She smiled sarcastically, "How chivalrous of you! I can kill you as well as stun you, so why don't you drop your own gun, and maybe I won't set this to 'disintegrate'!"


Janeway fell to the ground, but she wasn't dead. Deliberately, it seemed, Chuck had mercifully shot her in both the shoulders. She couldn't use either hand, and she was bleeding a whole lot, and maybe she might not even be able to use her hands again, but she wasn't dead.

Powys had pulled himself back to his feet by now. "That wasn't nice, Chuck." He had been hit by the bullets, but he wasn't bleeding. Beneath his shirt, ceramic was visible. "Nice shot, though."

* * * *

Scully sighed in exhaustion. This questioning process was tiring, as the kid didn't really have all that much useful information that he admitted to having. At least they were getting somewhere, however.

One of the men from the Stone tapped her on the shoulder, "I think we can narrow things down quite a bit." She didn't know him, but he was introduced to her as 'Silk'. What country he came from, she didn't know for sure, but he had something close to a Russian accent.

"Oh?" she raised her eyebrows. "Do you know something about this?"

Silk smiled, "I don't need to. I've asked enough questions to know what to ask." He looked at the kid, "We want to you to take us to this man who gave you the XTC. Did he tell you how to contact him again?"


Scully stared at him, and Silk smiled. "Even if they planned to kill him off, they usually make it easier on themselves if they tell him to come back. That way, their hitmen don't have to chase him across the town."

Scully felt like an idiot. Trust a low-life who probably had Mafia ties to come up with the solution.


Everyone jumped in shock. Scully pulled out her gun, running for the door. Zedar didn't follow her lead, but rather stood in the middle of the room, searching around with three of his five senses. The sixth sense, fear, was one that he didn't need to use. He already knew that he was deathly afraid of something.

Scully opened the door and to her credit, didn't announce her position to the world by identifying herself as an FBI agent.

The only ones who didn't follow Scully were Silk and the Doctor (which meant that Sarah stayed too).

Silk asked Zedar, "There's another one?"

He shook his head uncertainly, "I'm not sure..."

That's when one of the windows exploded into fine powder, and the gang kid's chest exploded almost immediately after. Whatever blew through his chest hit the wall opposite him and punched a big hole through the solid brick.

A single man dived through the space where the window used to be, flipping once, and landing on his feet. It was obvious that he was a professional, because he didn't pose dramatically or start making macho statements. He landed with his automatic shotgun blazing. In the space of a heartbeat, he had spread five full rounds at chest level in a 180 degree spread.

It would have been an impressive sight had everyone not remembered to duck.

* * * *

Chuck thought he had everything under control, but it was only a moment later when he knew that things were no longer under his control. The task was simple: kill everything in sight. That was the task, at least, but it was complicated by the fact that Chuck didn't kill women or children, even if he was a hired killer.

He wanted his control back, as much as a young brat wants a toy that's been taken away. Maybe that's why he was a bit more violent than he usually was.

Scully saw it from a distance, and it seemed to telescope in front of her, telescoping away. Janeway had what looked like a short-distance zap gun in her hand, holding off the biker she saw in the British Stone. The biker had a gun in his own hand. Jan and Methos were on the ground, shot up pretty badly. Maybe they were even dead. Powys was bleeding from a big heart wound, but he was standing and smiling.

The biker yelled something and fired his gun, just as a laser burst fired from Janeway's zapper. The biker screamed as the energy hit him, and he got slammed to the ground by its force. Janeway screamed as well, dropping her zapper as two bullets ripped through her right shoulder.

"CAPTAIN!" she could hear someone yell in slow motion as Janeway slammed into the ground.

* * * *

Chuck saw the other woman raise her gun in reflex and fear. Her nerves were in control, and though she had enough training to allow some conscious thought to interfere with those nerves, it didn't stop the bullets that flew towards him.

"God. Please, no."

Perhaps it's not macho for a hitman to pray for mercy from some higher power. Maybe it would be more dramatic for the hitman to stoically accept his death, knowing that death happens sooner rather than later to his kind. However, the truth is the truth: everyone's afraid of death. Everyone. Chuck just happened to be more honest about it, as he was more honest about everything else in his life.

He could actually see the bullets flying towards him. They weren't slowing down. If anything, it's like being able to see the individual blades of a moving fan momentarily by following the motion with your eyes as fast as they can move. A blur becomes a still picture. That's what the bullets were. A still image of two bullets hovering in mid-air.

She was a good shot, Chuck would have to admit.

What he didn't understand was what the loud sound was, and why he slammed into the ground when it wasn't the bullets that hit him.

When the lights went out, he wasn't around to ask how.

* * * *

Scully forced herself to lower the gun. The biker was down, and his gun a few feet away. Jan and Methos were pulling themselves to their feet, groaning.

"Are you all right?" demanded Scully.

Methos muttered, "He shot us, and we're just now coming back to life! What do you bloody think?"

"Ask a stupid question..." she muttered.

"He popped up out of nowhere and sprayed us before we could do anything!"

* * * *

Perhaps Zedar would have dealt with the killer, but Silk was faster. He threw a knife hidden under the shoulder of his coat. It would have hit the mark, had Thanatos not caught it in mid-air and plunged it towards Zedar's chest.

Zedar moved aside and laid an open hand on Thanatos' neck. A blue energy flashed, and the killer dropped to his knees, moaning in pain. "Down."

The Doctor's ears filled with a rushing sound that he had heard only once before, on the world where Zedar came from. He nodded. It was only to be expected.

Thanatos almost fell flat on his face, but he fought back, elbowing Zedar in the groin, who fell to his knees as well. When Silk had reached them, attempting to tackle Thanatos, he had to dodge the knife that was suddenly aimed for his face.

All in all, it gave Thanatos enough lead time to get to his feet and leap out the window. He was running off pretty fast too.

* * * *

Silk ran out the door then. "Good! The kid got killed by another one! He's getting away!"

Scully turned around. "What about them?"

Zedar followed Silk out the door. "I will handle this situation, and you go. Now, before he gets away!"

In the meanwhile, Chakotay had propped Janeway against a tree and ripped some material off his uniform, forming a rough bandage. Janeway was in no position to do it on her own.

"Do it!" She looked at Silk. "Let's go!" Pointing at Jan and Methos, who were still struggling to stay upright, Scully commanded, "Stay!"

Jan muttered, "Hell with that!" and staggered after her. Methos nodded and did the same.

That left Zedar alone with Janeway and Chakotay. He smiled as he viewed Chuck's prone form and waved a hand. Like the lifting of a mist by a strong wind, the vision was replaced with a prone, unwounded Chuck who had been knocked out cold by something altogether different than bullets. In the air, the two bullets still hung suspended. Frowning, Zedar could feel the heat still emanating from them. The mechanical energy had to be converted to something, and this was a slow release.

He knew better than to try to 'fix' the bullets. They would be fixed by the passage of time. Either the forces holding the bullets would vanish, or the energy would dissipate.

Nodding, he walked over to Janeway. "Relax. I'm going to help."

"How?" asked Chakotay, who hadn't even noticed what had happened with Chuck. "I've got things under control."

Zedar sensed the power emanating from the object that Chakotay held, but he sensed that it had the equivalent power of a novice healer. Perhaps Chakotay had things under control, but Zedar needed to change things just a little.

"Should have --" she clenched her teeth, unable to finish the sentence. Already light-skinned to begin with, she had become bone-white because of the loss of blood.

"Don't waste your breath. Sleep." He passed a hand over her eyes, and he heard a faint rushing in his ears. The telltale mark of sorcery. She closed her eyes and immediately began to sleep, breathing soft, relaxed, and silent breaths. Not the snoring type, apparently.


The wound began to close of its own accord, and he nodded. Time to take care of other matters.

"What are you?" demanded Chakotay, standing up, and backing off a little bit. "Are you Q?"

"I don't know who you're talking about. I'm Zedar."

"No..." Half-remembered visions sprang up then. It felt as if he were living a dream. Remembering this scene. "There's something else about you." In the place of Zedar was superimposed a vulture. "The Vulture spirit!"

Zedar looked shocked. "I have taken that form on many an occasion. Quite useful, in fact." He became thoughtful. "I don't know what hand he is playing in all this, but it doesn't help matters." Chakotay fell to his knees, and quite immediately began to sleep soundly too. He twitched, however, as if he were having a very intense dream or nightmare.

Now, he regarded the prone figure of Chuck, who was beginning to stir. "You, my friend... How do I deal with you? I'm not good at this."

* * * *

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