In need of time to process what he did as Godspark, Corey stumbles upon some knowledge that puts him in more danger than he knows, and Marcus’ carefully-laid plans in jeopardy.
For what it was worth, Tempest thought he made one sexy-ass villain in the Godspark suit. It wasn’t exactly the most imposing costume, but it oozed sexuality in a way that none of Imperious’ other enslaved heroes’ modified suits did.
Feeling all of that power rushing through him as Godspark had been intoxicating, exhilarating in the most insidious of ways. Whenever he closed his eyes he could almost imagine himself reaching out to touch that deep wellspring of power he’d managed to draw from as Godspark. He could literally feel the power thrumming just under his skin, waiting to be unleashed.
Tempest opened his eyes, unaware that he’d even closed them. He looked up at the clear sky. The sun-shields had been lowered since Selene City was currently on the night side of the moon, and he could see the stars just beyond the honeycomb lattice of metamaterial reinforcement that held up the protective structure.
Guilt was the biggest issue that Tempest had with the way things had gone. He regretted absolutely none of what he did—he would have gladly done it all again to get Imperious back, given the choice—but that was the problem. He stopped caring about the people.
Tempest sighed. Even though being with Imperious had taught him that it wasn’t wrong to indulge his desires, to put himself before the people, the part of him that still believed he could be a hero had always maintained that he still needed to at least care about the people he’d sworn to protect.
If Imperious could actually read his mind, Tempest was sure his master would scoff at the thought. Not at Tempest’s conviction, but rather at his bald assertion that he had to care at all times if he wanted to call himself a hero.
Imperious would call it inhuman to believe that a person should always put the welfare of strangers as a first priority over the welfare of people you cared about. Imperious would call it justified to fail to care for strangers when trying to protect one’s loved ones.
Tempest could see his master’s point, but all the same, he couldn’t agree. Not wholesale, at least. He supposed it was the fundamental difference between a villain’s perspective and a hero’s. Tempest still believed that he had a duty to the people, a responsibility to protect the ones that couldn’t protect themselves that he couldn’t just abandon at a whim because he was in pain.
Truth be told, as much as the experience had given Tempest a rush, it had also terrified him. However cool, calm, and collected he’d looked throughout the ordeal, looking back he knew in his heart that he lost it. Completely. He hadn’t cared who he would have to shove aside or even remove from his path.
Tempest had never truly understood what it meant like to have killing intent until he took on the mantle of Godspark. He shivered. He could still vividly remember hovering high above Selene City, looking down at the people milling about its streets as a god would look down at ants. He remembered thinking how little thought he would give to razing the city to the ground if he lost Imperious to the Centurion.
Tempest had never been in love before, and it was terrifying the depths of darkness his heart had so easily plunged into when the person he loved was threatened. He’d always known that his powers were dangerous in combination but having Imperious ripped out of his hands just like that had shown him how fatal they could actually be and the truth was something he would have rather not discovered.
Mercifully, Tempest’s wrist communicator chimed before his thoughts could go any further down the dark path that they had been trudging. A little more contemplation and god knew where he would have gone.
"What’s up?" said Tempest. Since the incident with the Centurion, Tempest had been pulling overtime during his patrol shifts. He felt as if he’d pushed the universe out of balance by so gleefully giving in to the darkness that he’d been looking for some way to tip it back the other way. For the most part, that had involved dealing with petty crime around the city.
"That’s a burglary a few blocks away," said SIBYL. "Attacker is armed, and a suspected unregistered Tier I Esper in the Commonwealth Bureau of Esper Affairs database. Risk level is low, but caution is nonetheless advised."
"It’s always advised, SIBYL," said Tempest, as SIBYL transmitted the location to his communicator. He didn’t feel like using the overlay on his visor tonight so he opted to set the communicator into navigation mode instead. "Do you ever not advise caution, SIBYL?" he said, swan-diving off the edge of the rooftop before pulling up into the sky.
SIBYL’s response was barely audible in the whistle of the wind in Tempest’s ears, but he could just about make it out. "I should wish that I didn’t have to, Tempest," said SIBYL. "But the heroes have yet to prove that the warning is unnecessary."
"Fair enough," Tempest muttered. "Suppose I can’t argue with that." There were a few smart cookies in the Hall of Heroes, and he liked to think that he was one of them. Wanting to be a hero attracted a certain kind of rather dense person, so he could believe that incidents kept occurring to impress upon SIBYL the need for the warning.
Tempest hovered by a building beside the one he needed to go to. His Tempest suit had received a recent upgrade so he used the adaptive grip feature to adhere himself to the side of the building.
"It’s an apartment?" Tempest said. SIBYL confirmed. An apartment. And in a high-rise, no less. He had to admit, the burglar had balls. That, or it wasn’t a burglary at all. Closing his eyes, he used his powers to get a general idea of the situation. It certainly wasn’t a burglary, not by his estimation, at least.
Tempest launched himself off the side of the building toward the apartment. He tried to keep out of the intruder’s line of sight, but it was difficult. The only real avenues for assault were from below or from above and given how many years criminals had gotten used to supers being able to fly both were as likely to be detected.
There was only one thing to do, in any case: try. Tempest shot up into the sky and gently lowered himself toward the apartment window, hoping to break through the glass, incapacitate the intruder, and save the victim in one fell swoop.
The intruder seemed to be getting more and more agitated. From what Tempest could tell, the woman was on the phone, hysterically saying something into the receiver while the intruder was, in all likelihood, threatening to shoot her head off if she didn’t comply. It would be so easy to use his ability to manipulate people’s bodies to solve the problem, but that felt a bit too close to what Godspark would do and Tempest didn’t want to give in to the temptation of taking the easy way out.
Still, the situation was rapidly devolving and while he wasn’t trained in the art of breaking up a hostage situation, he was the only one near enough and with the ability to do anything about it. He dropped quickly and flew through the window, the suit shielding him from the worst of the glass.
As he tumbled into the room, Tempest used the wind to blow the rest of the glass shards that might have fallen outward back into the room. He didn’t want any poor civilians on the street to get struck by falling glass.
The intruder was stunned for a moment, but quickly regained his composure. His finger had already half-pressed the trigger on the gun, still pointing toward the woman. "Do anything funny and I swear to God I’ll shoot her. You can’t possibly be fast enough to do anything to me before I pull this trigger."
Tempest was pretty sure he could. No human could react nearly fast enough to his lightning, though he didn’t want to risk it. "Alright," said Tempest, holding his hands up. "You’ve got me. So, what is it you want? A ransom? Your wife to take you back? Your company to hire you back?"
"No!" said the man. "I want to fucking talk to a hero," He said the word with such contempt he spat on the floor. "Tell your boss that I ain’t doing his dirty job for him anymore, okay? I can’t run. I can’t hide. And I’m sure you’re just gonna chuck me out the window, so I might as well say it. I’m done. It’s over. I don’t want to be a part of this farce no more."
"Wait, what do you—!" The man’s wrist turned and like a bolt of lightning, his intentions occurred to Tempest. Reaching into that part of himself he’d not wanted to touch, he exerted his control over the man’s body, whose muscles locked into place but for a little trembling. "Please don’t do that. I don’t want to be the reason someone killed themselves," said Tempest.
Tempest could already feel the oil-slick temptation of using more of the power in his mind. He forced the man to slide the gun toward him, and then relinquished his grip on the man’s body. "I don’t know what you mean? My boss? Could you explain, please?"
Before the man could answer, his eyes grew wide. There was a flash of green light through the room as a focused jade beam burned a hole through the man’s throat and out the back of his neck. The beam scorched a perfect circle on the wall behind the man’s head.
Tempest whipped around as fast as he could to try and catch sight of the perpetrator but saw no one. He shot out of the window as fast as he could and looked around but saw nothing amiss. He made his way back into the room to make sure the shaken victim of the "burglary" was taken care of while the authorities were on their way.
Something about what the "burglar" said struck him as truly odd. The man had clearly recognized him as Tempest. As a hero. The crime had been a ploy to attract attention, to deliver a message that would probably otherwise be lost. The man could have been one of Imperious’ underlings, but he had to admit it likely wasn’t the case.
The whole plan had been too erratic, too desperate. It wasn’t the kind of thing one of Imperious’ minions would do. It was the act of a man who truly believed that he had nowhere left to run, and wanted to make a statement. A statement to a hero, about someone higher up in the hierarchy, who was getting low-level thugs to do dirty work.
Corey peeled the Tempest suit off his body. It came away much easier than the previous version of the suit, which he was grateful for. IT just wasn’t quite as satisfying. He missed that moment of relief feeling cool air on his smothered skin.
With a sigh, Corey flopped onto the bed, not bothering to wear anything else. He wasn’t so concerned about what other people might think of him, anymore. He had bigger problems to worry about, such as the "burglar" and his cryptic last words. He couldn’t help but wonder if he’d even been meant to hear them in the first place.
Obviously the "burglar" had said the words, and so meant to say them to Corey, but that wasn’t the issue. The message was clear but, to him, missing context. Someone else who had the proper context was likely to understand what the "burglar" had meant.
Given that the "burglar" had committed a crime high up in an apartment building, it was likely that he had always intended to attract the attention of a hero. Mundane law enforcement simply wouldn’t have been able to respond nearly as promptly to such a situation.
The only reasonable conclusion was that the burglar thought all the heroes were in on something and thought that Corey would understand what he had to say.
Since Corey didn’t have the proper context to understand, he could reasonably assume that he wasn’t the only hero that wouldn’t have had the proper context to understand. He was Selene City’s defender, but still relatively low on the ladder of the Hall, so it was likely only people higher up in the organization and likely closer to the "Boss" would have the necessary context.
Corey realized with a sinking feeling that the whole thing stank of conspiracy among the higher-ups in the Hall of Heroes. He wondered if it had anything to do with the bill currently making its way through parliament to allow supers to hold public office.
It was then that it occurred to him that Master had sent Castor and Pollux on a mission to secure a meeting with a prominent senator who had gone on the record to support the bill but had since walked his support back. It gave him an inkling of what Master was trying to do, but he had a little bit of trouble accepting what it looked like. He could imagine Master working against the higher-ups of the hall, but couldn’t quite imagine why Master would be trying to kill a bill that would let him run for office.
Corey looked up at the ceiling. Something wasn’t right, but he wasn’t going to get answers by thinking any more about the situation. He hadn’t been to Master’s manor in a while because of his extra patrol shifts and his desire to just distance himself from the Godspark suit but he had to return, eventually. Hopefully, he could find answers, then.
With a deep breath, Corey calmed his turbulent emotions. He exhaled through his mouth, letting out a gentle stream of air as he emptied his mind. He was looking for that pleasant, fuzzy, hazy headspace that he slipped into whenever he visited with Master, and after a few minutes of doing his breathing exercises he managed to get there. His body flushed with heat as he struggled to think through the thick fog that blanketed his mind and he let out a little moan. It felt so good to let go.
Corey reached for his phone and sent off a badly-spelled text to Gene the next room over. "hei, hansum," the message said. "wana cum over 4 sum fun?"
A few minutes later there was a quiet knock on the door. Gene let himself in using the key that Corey had given him. He stripped off his shirt and made his way over to the bed, gingerly stepping over the Tempest suit that Corey had just left lying on the floor in the middle of the room.
"Feeling like a dumb jockboy tonight, are we?" said Gene, placing his hand on Corey’s toned stomach. He gently rubbed his hands all over the rock-hard abs and traced the grooves between with a feather-light touch. "God, you’re so hot, Corey."
"Mmm…" Corey moaned. Every moment that passed made it more difficult to think. He was definitely sliding into the dumb jockboy headspace, and he wasn’t about to complain. The arousal felt like it was burning him up from the inside out and it felt good. "’M a good jockboy," he giggled.
"That you are, Corey," Gene murmured. His hand wandered down from Corey’s stomach to cup his balls. Corey could only moan as Gene tickled and teased his swollen, cum-filled nuts. "You’re a good, locked jockboy with a tight little pussy between your legs," said Gene, sending a shiver up Corey’s spine as his fingers dipped down past Corey’s taint to rub up against his hole.
Gene leaned over Corey’s naked body and kissed him. Instinctively, Corey hiked his legs into the air, giving Gene’s fingers better access to his hole as they rubbed gentle, teasing circles around his twitching pucker.
"God," said Gene, pulling away from Corey with a grin on his face. "I still can’t believe that I get to fuck Tempest." Gene pulled his fingers away from Corey’s ass. He pulled a small tube of lube from his pants and squeezed a dollop of gel out onto his fingers.
Corey’s back arched off the bed at the sensation of the cool lube being spread around the rim of his boypussy. He moaned as Gene leaned in and sucked on the crook of his neck, gently biting at the skin there. "I always thought that I would lead a pretty mediocre life, Corey," Gene said, pressing a kiss to Corey’s collarbone.
The tip of one of Gene’s fingers popped into Corey’s hole, eliciting another moan. It sank in all the way to the knuckle, curling inside of him, gently brushing against his prostate and making him leak. "You probably don’t understand what I’m saying but I feel it bears saying, anyway," said Gene.
Corey moaned again as another finger entered him, stretching out his fuckhole to prepare him for Gene’s big cock. "I don’t care that it means I have to submit myself to Imperious because I find the idea quite hot, but I just have to thank you, Corey," Gene whispered, his teeth grazing the sensitive skin of Corey’s shoulder. "If not for you, I would have never become a part of this, of something bigger than myself. I promise I’ll take care of you with every fibre of my being, I would have even if Master didn’t ask me to."
A third finger briefly entered Corey, making the tight ring of his fuckhole burn. He groaned as Gene pulled the fingers out of him, only to let out a quiet whimper as Gene’s thick, long cock slid into him with one smooth thrust.
For someone who seemed so rigid otherwise, Imperious was pleased to learn that the Centurion was actually highly flexible. "How does it feel, Titus, to belong mind, body, and soul to someone else?" he murmured, reaching down to stroke his fingers through the fallen hero’s sweat-slicked hair.
The two were in the basement of the manor, isolated from the outside world by many feet of concrete and a nigh-impenetrable firewall courtesy of N3M0. The centurion was straddling a wooden block with a thin flat surface at the top and sides that slope out toward the bottom, giving it the profile of a thin trapezoid.
Some three feet away from one end of the bench was a throne-like chair that Imperious was currently sitting in. A row of dildos was mounted on the flat strip on top of the long block, evenly spaced, getting thicker and longer from the end furthest from the chair.
Titus was hunched over the third dildo from the far end, his lips locked around the base of the sixth. The fallen hero was slowly working his hips up and down the dildo in his ass while he sucked on the dildo buried halfway down his throat.
A small smirk tugged at the corner of Imperious’ mouth. "This feels so much better than being a hero, doesn’t it?" said Imperious. His voice was thick with suggestion, his power dripping from his words like honey. "It’s much easier to just give in to the pleasure rather than worrying about protecting the people."
Titus moaned. Imperious’ words sent a shiver down his spine, and his cock, flaccid despite his arousal, dribbled a clear strand of pre-cum onto the wooden bench. This wasn’t the first time Imperious had spoken those words, and every time he repeated them, they sank ever deeper into Titus’ psyche.
Repetition was reinforcement, and Imperious had long since mastered the art of suggestion. The blinders strapped to Titus’ head restricted his view to the bench in front of him and, if he looked up, Imperious. It shrank his world down to the task in front of him, and the taskmaster who put him to it.
Titus had resisted, in the beginning. The ones that weren’t willing participants in their own enslavement always did. But so isolated from his old life, so separated from his notions of being a hero, even the mighty Centurion bent to Imperious’ words.
"You like this, don’t you?" said Imperious. Titus’ task was simple. He had to make his way down the row of dildos, riding and sucking each one for however long Imperious wanted him to before moving on to the next. The challenge was to only get hard on command—to do otherwise would mean starting over.
A smirk tugged at the corner of Imperious’ lips as Titus’ eyes met his gaze. They had long since taken on the faint blue that all of his slaves’ eventually did. "Look at that cock of yours leak. It feels so good to fuck your ass on that dildo, doesn’t it? The way it grazes your prostate, and sends electricity up your spine…"
Titus moaned again around the dildo in his throat. "Come closer" said Imperious. Titus pulled off both dildos with a loud, wet slurp. He ambled forward, legs bent at the knees on either side of the bench, until he had lined his ass up with the next dildo.
At Imperious’ nod, Titus lowered himself onto the rubbery cock. This was as far as Titus had gotten all day, and Imperious had his doubts that the fallen hero would manage any more before their session ended.
Titus hunched over and wrapped his lips around the head of the seventh dildo from the far end. Slowly, he worked his lips down the shaft, swallowing it inch by inch until it was buried all the way to the hilt into his throat.
"You love this," said Imperious. "It makes you feel so good. It’s nothing like all the stress that you had to go through as a hero. That only made you miserable, spending all of your time thinking about the people and how to protect them from the people who would threaten them."
Titus moaned. His back ached, toes curling against the smooth stone floor as he moved his ass up and down the dildo he was riding. "You don’t want that anymore, do you?" said Imperious. "It’s stressful to think, and it’s only natural to not want to be stressed. So that must mean that you don’t want to think anymore, isn’t that right, Titus?"
With an upward twitch of his index finger, Imperious signaled that Titus could pull off the dildo to take a breath. Titus did so, strands of spit and throat slime falling out of his mouth as he gasped for air. Imperious gave him all of two seconds to take another gulp of breath before sending him back down with a twitch of the finger in the opposite direction.
"It’s a good thing that you won’t have to worry about that now, isn’t it, Titus?" said Imperious. He had to wonder how long ago Titus stopped thinking of himself as the Centurion. He found, in the early days, that using a hero’s secret identity broke them down faster. It made them feel helpless, distant from their old identity as a noble hero. It made them vulnerable.
"Because you’re not a hero anymore. You don’t want to be a hero anymore. It just feels so much better to be a good little slut for cock, doesn’t it?" said Imperious. Titus nodded, bobbing his head up and down the dildo he was sucking on. His cock was already half-hard, twitching between his legs.
"It’s a good thing that you belong to Godspark now," said Imperious. "But you also belong to me, because Godspark belongs to me. You won’t need to think anymore because we’ll do all that pesky thinking for you. All you need to do is be a good little hero slut, and we’ll make sure to reward you."
Imperious smirked. He had yet to experience a forced orgasm at Corey’s hands, but he was intrigued. It had certainly done a number on Titus. The fallen hero was hooked. Titus’ eyes widened at the mention of a reward, and Imperious had to laugh.
"Yes, Titus," said Imperious. "It will be exactly the reward that you’re thinking of. As long as you’re a good little slut, as long as you’re nice and obedient to your masters, I will make sure that you get your reward."
Titus sucked on the dildo with renewed fervor. He moaned as he worked both his ass and his mouth on their respective dildos. Titus was already hard, but Imperious let the fallen hero debase himself a few more minutes before he said, "Go back to the start and wait for your cock to get soft."
Marcus emerged from the underground complex into his study naked. He had a hand dowel draped around the back of his neck, but not much else. After what he liked to think was a very productive session with Titus, he’d gone on to give Starbull a much-overdue milking and had, predictably, ended up getting soaked.
The sheer volume of the hero’s ejaculate wasn’t even something that Marcus engineered. For whatever reason though, soon after he broke, Starbull started producing more and more and more semen. Marcus still had no idea why, but the end result was that the hero came like a firehose whenever he was released from his chastity and milked.
Starbull’s regular milkings were always a bit of a messy affair so Marcus only ever did it when he was due to have his costume deep-cleaned anyway. Even though the cum got everywhere, Marcus didn’t particularly mind. He loved men for a reason, and he didn’t mind getting covered in delicious, musky cum every now and again.
Marcus sighed. As much as he enjoyed session-days, they did tend to leave him a little bit exhausted by the end. He collapsed into the recliner he had by the fireplace and briefly closed his eyes.
The whirring and clicking of a metallic spherical drone hovering in front of Marcus’ face interrupted the nap he’d inadvertently taken. A quick glance at a nearby clock confirmed that he’d slept for a few hours, and had slept through the end of Corey’s patrol shift.
"What is it, N3M0?" said Marcus, addressing the drone. He tried to ignore the dread that reared its head in the back of his mind. Since Corey had neither come back to the manor nor contacted Marcus since the whole Godspark debacle, Marcus had kept an eye on him through N3M0. The technopath knew better than to interrupt Marcus in his study unless something urgent had happened. "Did something happen to Corey?"
"No, Sir," crackled N3M0’s voice from the drone. "By that, I mean no harm has befallen Corey Cooper. There was, however, an incident earlier this evening that I determined, after a brief evaluation, would be of interest to you, Master."
"Show me," said Marcus. He picked up the polyglass slate from the small table beside the chair and held it up. The drone whirred and clicked, a small arm unfolding from within and attaching to one of the ports of the slate. A few seconds later, the footage started playing.
"Can you raise the opacity of the slate? It’s a bit difficult to see what’s going on," said Marcus. The drone whirred in acknowledgement and the back plane of the slate turned into a solid black color. "Backlight, too," said Marcus. The light brought the scene into sharp focus.
"This is a very clear shot," said Marcus, as a burglar and a woman came into frame. The burglar had a gun to the woman’s head and the two, together, broke into what appeared to be a bedroom.
From what Marcus gathered, the camera was situated in the hallway, but could still see into the bedroom when the door was open. It was through there that he watched Tempest crash through the window and confront the burglar.
So far, Marcus didn’t really see anything worth his attention until the burglar started speaking. "Can you pull up any data on that criminal?" said Marcus. A profile appeared on the screen. "A low-level grunt with a conscience. That’s not something you see every day. He must be ramping up preparations, then," he said.
"That seems to be the case, Master," said N3M0. "I could try to break into the compound again, if you’d li—"
"No," said Marcus, stiffly. "It was bad enough last time when you almost got caught. We were just lucky he was expecting it and thought it was cute. You should know better than anyone why it’s a terrible idea to try again."
Marcus’ mood darkened. N3M0 still hadn’t completely recovered from the "message" that the big guy and his goons had sent. Marcus’ camp couldn’t afford any signs of overt aggression until the time was right. For now he could only bide his time and play along.
The enemy knew about Corey. Marcus had been forced to include that much in his reports. Corey wasn’t stupid and the burglar had said enough that by now, Marcus was sure the boy had already figured out there was a conspiracy afoot. That put Corey in danger.
"I’ve given him enough space to process the whole Godspark thing. I’d give him more, but the situation has changed," said Marcus. "Tell Corey that I want him here tomorrow. And tell Gene ton drag that boy here by the balls if he has to," said Marcus, grip tightening against the edge of the slate.
"Yes, Master," said N3M0. Marcus resumed the footage and watched as the familiar shimmering silhouette of Hari appeared in the window. Though naked but for the multicolored loincloth that draped between his legs, Hari’s body glimmered with a fantastical array of colors though it was nuclear-green that overcame the rest of the hues as brilliant light pooled in the palm of his open hand.
"Scratch that," said Marcus. "Get Corey here, now." Marcus was less concerned about the devastating damage that the green beam of energy dealt to the burglar than he was about the effects of exposure to it.
Hari’s little-known green light was a poison of the most insidious kind. The moment the light touched the corpse and the wall behind it, both started giving off the nigh-undetectable substance. It was like radiation, only worse.
Marcus had the equipment needed to counteract the poison at the manor. It was slow-enough acting that Corey could have waited another day, but he wasn’t going to take chances. The woman, the first responders, the clean-up crew and the crime-scene investigators would fall viciously ill over the next few days, removing any firsthand witnesses to the scene. The enemy held nothing sacred, except, perhaps ironically, himself.