DAMNED || LANDEL'S INSTITUTE

A Multifandom Asylum RPG


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Day 32: Cafeteria, Breakfast
standing
7_to_midnight wrote in damned
Sylar's gears were still turning as the nurse and a burly orderly escorted him down long halls and through a strange, sunlit room. He'd been forced to drop his pen when the orderly had seen it, and since then, he'd realized that this place had better security than he'd originally anticipated, as well as a large population of patients. It looked like he'd have to bide his time for now, pretending to be this 'Zachary Blaine' and trying to figure out how the hell he'd gotten here.

His mind went over and over the events in Mohinder's lab, tracing every second that led up to his unconsciousness. According to the computer logs and the decked-out loft, Mohinder was working for the Company now, so had that woman with the electricity been an operative? Was this all a Company front? Even so, it didn't make sense for them to drop him off somewhere without any close supervision. They knew how dangerous he was. How special he was.

But right now, his abilities had been nullified and he was left only with the option of playing along. It was a very good thing that it was something he excelled at, even with his sudden loss of the cure clouding his thoughts and telling him to do something drastic.

Still, it was fun to take ahold of strings and let someone think they were pulling him when in fact he was the puppetmaster. Who knew? Maybe he could find a new toy now that his last one had worn out.

Sylar took his syrup-covered waffle to a table and tried to keep track of both the security and the people flooding in. Soon, he'd find an opening, a weak link he could exploit. It was only a matter of time.

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The white clinical halls made him shudder inwardly. Allelujah had never got past his hatred of hospital environments and he couldn't quite suppress a thrill of fear at the thought of what they could do. The loose grey clothes didn't help that impression either.

But no-one seemed to be pulling out any needles or machines yet there's always time and the nurse actually seemed to be going out of her way to make him feel comfortable and damn it, they'd destroyed that place doesn't mean there can't be another.

"Shut up, Hallelujah," he muttered beneath his breath, but he wasn't surprised. This place was just... wrong and he could feel Hallelujah's desire to start fighting. Only the knowledge that they probably could pull out needles and make things very unpleasant very quickly kept him in control.

The nurse pushed a plate into his hands insistently and told him to pick whatever he wanted, gesturing to the breakfast foods laid out. He blinked in surprise (since when had hospitals or prisons ever had food that looked this good?) and filled his plate. Meat and eggs of course, but he after a moment, he took a couple of waffles as well, covering it in fruit and syrup.

He was guided to a seat and bit his lip with a guilty look before taking a bite. He still couldn't quite convince himself that eating so much sugar was allowed, it still felt like something illicit, given out only when it was required for tests.

Well, waking up in his bed all of a sudden was a little strange, but Archer had learned to go with the flow of things. After all, He'd seen and done much stranger things.

If there was one thing he didn't have to bitch about, it would have to be the food. Belgian waffles, fresh fruit, bacon, eggs, etc. Man, these guys really went out of their way to keep the patients' stomachs happy. Now, if only they could do something about their awful wardrobe. Archer filled up his plate with an assortment of the good stuff. Who cared if he had some left over? It was on the Institute's dime anyways.

He didn't have a particular preference for seating, and it's not like he had a lot of choices. The cafeteria was starting to fill up, and one seat was as good as another. In the end, he sat down next to an unfamiliar face, seemingly deep in thought.

The food was as good as it looked and he couldn't help but enjoy it, even if he felt guilty for liking it. He'd scanned the room looking for people that he knew... Tieria, Setsuna, Lock... no... not him. Not him ever again. Sumeragi maybe. Any of the crew. But there was no-one who looked even slightly familiar.

He looked up sharply when someone sat down next to him, automatically tensing up at the closeness from someone he didn't know. He shifted uncomfortably for a moment before forcing a small smile. Information could be useful, even if this place was supposed to be full of the mentall ill.

"Hello..."

"Hey," Archer replied in a conversational tone, looked like he wouldn't be getting that silent breakfast today.

It hadn't gone unnoticed by the Servant that his fellow patient was a little tense. Perhaps he was new here. Although Archer couldn't be totally sure about that since it was only his third day. He could understand the guy's suspicion if that were true. Good thing he didn't care that much about a complete stranger, although that could change with time. Human emotions could be a real bitch that way.

"I'm Archer by the way," he said, while politely sticking out his hand for a shake.

Well, this was a little awkward and Allelujah had never managed to pick up the knack of human interaction. Oh, he could feign it well enough, and sometimes he was even able to do it for real, but he just wasn't used enough to people beyond a very small group to be comfortable.

He shook the man's hand with a firm grip when it was offered. "Allelujah," he replied. He seemed awfully calm here. "Have you been here for a long time?"

"Two days," he replied.

As Archer shook Allelujah's hand he could feel a firm grip, callouses in all the right places, so the young man was used to handling a weapon. Upon closer inspection he noticed Allelujah's callouses especially around the phalanges of his index finger, the same one used to pull a trigger. Perhaps a firearm would suit his new acquaintance best, but the hand could only tell so much.

Allelujah appeared to be a relatively muscular and athletically fit young man, the kind that underwent strict training. Hopefully he had some kind of martial arts training and wasn't some kind of athlete. If he was the former that was good news, but if he wasn't well, maybe he should write his will.

"And just so that we get this out of the way, you're not crazy, despite any attempts of the staff to convince you otherwise."

Allelujah blinked in surprise at that. Two days? That wasn't very long but he seemed very used to the place already. Wasn't it usually more of a shock? Not that he was sure how it normally happened...

We don't even want to be here for two days.

[We don't have much of a choice for now.]

They had no support if Celestial Being really had decided to dispose of him and they didn't know where they were and how had he even got to Earth from space without noticing anyway?

Allelujah's face fell for just a moment when Archer spoke about not being crazy, and Hallelujah's laughter was not helping. "Isn't this a mental hospital though?" he asked.

Technically today was the start of his third day, but... Oh well, it was just a minor detail. Archer had no idea of Allelujah's "inner conflict." If he had known, the Servant would have rephrased his words.

"It certainly looks like one doesn't it," Archer said, rhetorically, after a bite of eggs.

Oh man these things are so good. Mmmm...

"Let me guess, you don't remember how you got here, right? Doesn't that strike you as a little unusual? The staff also calls us by false names. This is a real elaborate setup they have here, but none of the patients know why."

Archer decided to hold off on the "monsters coming out at night" part, otherwise Allelujah might think that he belonged here.

"It looks like some kind of hospital at least," Allelujah replied with a shrug. He could tell that just by looking. Just by the smell even if it was masked by the scent of the food.

He honestly wished that he could day that yes, he did find it unusual, but he really couldn't. Everyone had false names in Celestial Being and there had been a few times when he'd just not realised what had happened and he hadn't been in the best state of mind before waking up. "I suppose I would have noticed coming to Earth from space," he admitted. "But with enough drugs..."

"Coming to Earth from space?" Well I suppose it's possible. "But with enough drugs?" Now who thinks like that? I suppose people along shady lines of business like me would jump to that conclusion. Well that's not definite proof of anything.

"Are you an astronaut or something?" that really was the only possibility in Archer's opinion.

An... an astronaut? That question did leave him puzzled for a few moments. There hadn't been astronauts for centuries, not since people first started going into space. Definitely not within his lifetime.

"No I... I caught the orbital elevator. How else would I get into space?"

"Orbital elevator?" Archer rolled the words over in both his mouth and mind. It sounded futuristic. "I'm sorry, what year do you think it is?"

Different worlds, different times; it was all the same to Archer. He suspected Allelujah wasn't exactly from the 20th century. Now, how to break it to him that he wasn't in Kansas anymore? There probably wasn't anyway that wouldn't make Archer sound crazy.

He didn't know? How could he not know? The elevator was the greatest piece of human engineering ever and everyone knew about it. "Yes. Of course. You catch it into space like catching a plane or a train." And the question about the year was even odder. But then, this was a mental hospital. Who knew what kind of delusions people had?

"It's AD 2308," he said seriously. Of course it was. When else could it be? There was no way that he could have been unconcious for months.

There wasn't really an easy way to break it to him.

"Sorry, but it's closer to the 21st century," Archer replied. "The orbital elevator is currently only a theory."

Not that Archer hadn't seen one before, but when had that been. It was difficult to keep track of these things.

I was probably killing someone or something at the time, for the "sake of the world."

"Now, I bet you think I'm crazy or deluded. Well, I don't really have much proof, but I guarantee that everyone else, the staff and patients, will agree with my opinion."

Well for the most part, except for those people from different time periods.

"You probably shouldn't share things that contradict with the norm, otherwise you'll get trouble from the orderlies," he sighed. "If you're convinced this is 2308, don't you think the technology here is lacking?"

Allelujah's visible eye widened at that news, before narrowing suspiciously. "That was three hundred years ago. It isn't possible." And yes, he sort of did think that Archer was crazy because it was crazy to think that.

He glanced around and then shrugged. "There isn't much technology around to make a judgement on." Although he'd been surprised by how the locks hadn't been computerised ones. Maybe they didn't want to risk someone hacking them?

Archer supposed that the cafeteria didn't exactly contain the pillar of this era's technological achievements. Those belgian waffles had it easy, unchanged since the Middle Ages.

"Yeah, I guess you're right," Archer shrugged. If Allelujah didn't believe him that was his problem. He'd change his tune during the nightshift. "Well, enough of my spiel. Was there anything you wanted to ask?"

There really wasn't much evidence that Allelujah could draw on to either prove or disprove what Archer was saying and it did sound crazy. Time travel wasn't possible.

He took a few more bites of his waffle, savouring the sweetness of it because who knew when he'd get the chance again? "What nation is this?" he asked. He wasn't sure which answer was worst although if it was the Human Reform League then there was a good chance that they would find him and know.

"I've been told it's somewhere in North America, not that it'll do you a lot of good here," Archer answered.

Their location was the least of their worries. Since Archer was here it meant that whoever was behind this institute had serious power. Stealing a Servant from Gaia wasn't exactly easy.

"You can always ask the staff, if you think they'll tell you the truth."

North America? So, Union territory. At least the Union would probably just imprison or kill him instead of sending him to a lab again. Somehow, it wasn't as comforting a thought as he'd hoped. But if he could contact the Ptolemaios... Sumeragi... even if they'd been in such bad shape before he'd woken up here.

He shook his head at the suggestion. "I've learned not to trust hospital staff."


Learned not to trust hospital staff... Archer wondered just exactly how much experience Allelujah had with hospitals. Maybe the young man really belonged here.

"Have a lot of experience huh?" he asked honestly. "Well, you should probably watch out during the nightshift."

There was no way Archer was gonna tell him about the monsters, but he couldn't leave the poor guy completely in the dark, regardless of what he thought of Archer's sanity.

"More than I'd like," Allelujah replied with a pained smile. Too much of his life spent in facilities like that. It wasn't something that he could just get over. He wasn't certain that he ever would. As for whether he really belonged in a mental hospital... well, that too.

"What happens at night?" he asked curiously, wanting as much information as he could get.

Lot's of things. Monsters come crawling out of the shadows and the institute loosens our leash a little. Somehow, Archer didn't think Allelujah would believe that, so he settled for something simpler.

"It gets dangerous during the night," Archer replied, catching Allelujah's gaze. "For one thing, a small group patients are taken from their rooms for experimentation each night." Cue sarcasm, "I had the privilege of helping one. He was in pretty bad shape, heavy bleeding and burns on the surface. No telling what else they did to him."

Although, I'm pretty sure Nakago was an asshole before his operation.

Allelujah couldn't stop himself from tensing up in response to Archer's words, feeling a flicker of fear at the thought. It was jsut like that place! They'd found out what he was and now they wanted to see how one of the rejects had managed to survive for so long.

We'll kill them this time too.

"That's what I expected," he said after a moment. What else would happen? He couldn't imagine really being in a mental hospital.

"It's not so simple," Archer hadn't even gotten close to unraveling the Insitute's mysteries. Taking a sip from his drink he continued, "Our rooms are unlocked at night and we're allowed to move around freely without supervision."

Now what to say about the danger? What would his new acquaintance believe?

"Sometimes the staff are armed, and sometimes patients are temporarily brainwashed."

Allelujah blinked in surprise at that little piece of information. That was new. How did they keep control of their test subjects if they could wander around. It was one thing during the day when they were supervised, but at night it would be impossible and they could get into places that weren't meant for test subjects and...

"The staff actually physically attack the patients? But that's counterproductive. Tests don't work properly if the subjects are too injured."

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