the building itself, initially, is one of many on the waterfronts of magog, a city which, bounded by the styx on one side & the lethe on the other, both feeding into the ocean nearby, has many industrial shorelines. inside the building resembles most the drilling platform of an oil rig, renovated into office spaces. i enter it because i need to find her. just last night i have been here, & events almost identical the ones about to transpire occcured the as well. she has gone in through one of the side doors, a door like those at a movie theater, meant only for outlet. she has left it wedged open, & already i despair of finding her. the building is as i recall- vast, a small world wrapped up & held in a magnetic bottle within the confines of the property. there are many kinds of doors in this place- or better said many doors, but only four kinds. black doors, grey doors, numbered doors, & elevators. sometimes, in the hallways, there is an electrical pop & the lights for out for a minute or two.
the elevators will take you up & down, up & down, & finally come to a rest on a floor seemingly at random. the numbered doors are flooded; are in fact meant to be flooded. they are stairs, twisting around in helixes, water pouring down the steps, ceilings riddled with hatches & airlocks. when the surge comes, they are doubtless fillled to capacity with the dark water, for even now the rushing liquid comes in torrents. as for the black & grey doors, they are locked & without handles; they cannot be opened. if knocked upon, however, whatever lies behind them might be roused to struggle. banging, slamming at the steel framed door, the door shuddering, rattling ominously. on each floor, only either the black or the grey has something behind it, that unknown prisoner, unseen monster. the two coloured doors must go to another set of hallways, because when one door starts being pounded upon, the others of its same colour code also are barraged with urgent, ham-fisted punches. i think it is some binary code, using zombies within the walls as the circuit, or that is at least my first guess, & i keep searching for her, remembering how it went last night.
without warning, an elevator opens & a man in a suit starts walking at me, practically jogging with aggression. i fight down the urge to run. we talk, & he is terrifyingly suspicious of me. i want to talk about the code, about which elevator or what stairwell i've taken so far in my search, but he just keeps insisting he can't know i'm not lying, trying to deceive him. he is accusatory, either trying to alpha-male away the fear he seems to me, or because he is a function of this place. when he storms off down stair well 3 i still can't be sure he isn't some kind of dweller here, though how that could be i don't know. i think about how the Doctor tried to convince me not to come here until my memory is better. but it will be coming soon, & she is here now. i killed the last one, but only by luck, only just & somehow i know i could never kill the one they will send to replace it. are there warehouses like this in other cities?
i take a cornor & i am back at the propped open door i came into this place by; it is then that i realize i am too late. i have lost. translucent black cubes, the size of city blocks, are coming up out of the water. cube after cube of solid dark water, with liquid within, joining up to the others to make a corridor between styx & the building. inside, i know the surge has come, sweeping away everything in the stairwells as i was swept away last night, breath being choked out of my lungs. how could i have killed it last night? i must not be remembering it properly. Doctor Schadel warned me, told me that this would happen. & then the hallway of water is complete, passage possible, & it comes.
i wonder how large the colony is that makes it up, as it squirms through a tunnel too small by far for it. the humanoid shape it possesses is made up of perhaps 100,000 wriggling leech like strands, knotting around each other to make its sinewy shape. where it should have a head & adorning the bredth of its shoulders it has only cannons, or antenea of some kind. they look like newer growths; perhaps this is the same one & i destroyed its head last night? maybe that is it. Doc Skull told me i might have trouble remembering things. but by the time my musing is over, it has already entered the building, already resumed its throne in the briney chamber at the heart of the hallways. it begins talking. the language is like nothing on earth, or below its waves, but i know it. 65,000,000 years & counting, black in tooth & claw, i've picked up smatterings of all kinds of things. it almost feels like once i knew this language toe to tip, but like so much else my swiss cheese mind has lost it. the Doc said i might have problems remembering. the sound of its voice makes the whole city rumble, & windows shatter, so much does the pitch & tremble vary. i mean, treble. all i can make out of my piecemeal recollections is that whatever it demanded, whatever it threatened, it will keep doing that until its demands are met.
which is when the revengers step in. revengers asemble! Captain America, the greatest soldier & favored son of a dead nation, dressed in red, white, & blue & bearing a shield. Doc Skull, inheritor of Captain America's most notorious foe's legacy, surgeon supreme, dressed as a member of the 1800s. Terra, cyborg daughter of two old avengers, with the powers of geomancy, whose very skin shines with transparent metal. The archer's name i do not know, something with devil in it (Devileye?) but he is blind, using echolocation to aim his shots unerringly. The Doc has translated the language, deciphering the giant's desperate need for the universal panacea. Terra, delving deep into hermetic lore, luckily stumbles upon the formulae. Devileye readies a hypodermic arrow. Captain America tells all this to the giant, secures her release, calms the piscine creatures quailing heart. they make all my investigation, all my terror, all of it in vain. effortlessly. which is when i realize. i must destroy the revengers.