Well, I posted the eighth chapter of this one up on Fanfiction.net and Archive of Our Own, it is time to post the third chapter of the Redux of Truth Be Told. The whole rewrite process has been fun, and I hope to do a rewrite with all the stories in The Cale Storyline. As it is, the penultimate chapter of the Redux of this story is being proofread, so I'm starting to post the rewrite of Truth Be Told. With luck, I will have all the chapters of this one up by the end of the month, well, all the chapters that are complete that is.
As always, this was originally posted under my name, Richard B Sampson Jr., on Fanfiction.net
Attention: Generation X and their villains, as well as any other mutant mentioned in this story, is property of Marvel Comics. The character Richard Cale is named after family relations. Any other reference to anything copyrighted is a chance happening.
Truth Be Told Redux
Chapter 3: Jono's Story (Original)
When I had walked into the room, I had seen Mondo sitting in a chair, starting to look a bit anxious. It had been unusual at the time, but I had only chalked it up to the sudden changes in things happening at the school. With the new student, and what happened when he arrived, it should have been expected. Yet, Mondo was the most laid back student here, so him looking anxious was odd.
Before I could ask him what was wrong, Sean was standing in the door opposite me, and beckoned me over. As I headed towards him, I heard him say to Mondo, "Lad, I will be with ye in a moment. Just need to give Jono a message." Once I had reached the door, I heard Sean say, rather softly, "Jono, we have a problem. Richard found the real Mondo elsewhere on the grounds, and the one here is a clone."
I could tell Sean was being serious, but I will admit I had some doubts about it. While I had seen Richard's ability do some amazing things, I didn't think he could detect if someone was a clone or not. I just had to ask the question that bothered me. "How did Richard know?"
Of all the things I figured might be offered as an explanation, I actually heard something I didn't expect to hear. "The lad had the good, or bad, luck to discover my cousin is here." We had heard about Black Tom a bit a few months ago, but I didn't expect us to have an encounter with him. I then heard Sean continue. "Seems he replaced Mondo with a plantlike cone."
All at once, I put it together. I was being asked to take care of the clone. I double checked, since I knew my power had hurt someone in the past before. “I’m guessing that Richard seemed to think I have the ability to get rid of this clone.” I saw Sean nod, and I now had to struggle with my doubts about doing that.
Since the time my powers manifested, I vowed to learn all I could about them. That meant learning what I could do to keep them from hunting another soul. I still feel guilty about what happened to Gayle, an action that while accidental, left her confined to a wheelchair, and then made her join Emplate’s group.
Of course, if this Mondo was a clone, I wouldn’t feel so bad about it. At least, I thought that. With clones, I wasn’t sure if I could rationalize away hurting them. I mean if clones are real people as well as their originals, who was to say they didn’t have a right to live. I had no idea what the right choice was.
That was until I heard, and saw, Richard and Yvette enter the room. Richard was coming in without looking into the room. Obviously, Richard’s own ability hadn’t recovered from bringing in the other Mondo, since he was talking with Yvette. Judging by how he spoke, he didn’t know the other Mondo was still alive. “And the Mondo that I found was the real one.”
I now know the folly I had made waiting so long. I saw the shock first on Yvette’s face as she pointed into the room, and said, “And that one is the fake?” When she spoke that question, everything happened quickly, starting with Richard spinning to face an oncoming fist from Mondo. It was something, since the arm seemed to lengthen to deliver the punch. Both of them ducked in different directions, but unfortunately for Richard, the creature was focused on him.
At that point, the creature had morphed its arms into tendrils, and had quickly wrapped around Richard. I had no choice then but to blast the thing. I focused my energy into a beam, and literally incinerated the monster. I knew it couldn’t be Mondo then. Luckily, my blast was in time, as the creature was literally destroyed, with anything outside the blast falling to the floor as ash. Of course, before that happened to all of the tendril, Yvette had cut it off, and was now holding Richard up as he gasped for breath.
I walked over to the two, and apologized for my lack of action. “Sorry about that, Richard. I had still had some doubts about it.” I felt he would understand my reasons, since I had told him a bit about Gayle.
Sure enough, I saw him nod as he caught his breath. I had to admit, the brush with death didn’t seem to rattle him too much, since he responded with a statement that almost sounded like a joke. “I understand, Jono. I just didn’t expect another near death encounter like that. Makes my third one.”
Yvette sat back, listening carefully as Jean stopped Jonathan's story. Obviously, that part about Richard's statement was deemed an important point. "Do you believe that might have been part of his breakdown?" She knew that Jean was a powerful telepath. That much had been explained to her when they called them for help. At least now they were getting closer to the source of Richard’s breakdown, but she knew they weren’t there yet.
She felt Jonothan was about to say something, but she heard Sean answer the question that was asked. “That had been the first time that any of us knew about Richard having brushes with death. As you can see,” she saw him motion around the table, “those of us who weren’t at the school at the time of that attack are just learning it now.”
Looking around the table, Yvette could see the stunned looks on the faces of all the girls. Monet, who had been either paying attention, or in one of her spells, turned to look at Sean so quick, Yvette was afraid the girl had snapped her own neck. Jubilation had almost fallen out of her chair. Paige, who had been trying to look calm during it all, had done a double take. Even Emma Frost, who had started helping her with her psychic powers, looked shocked.
Yvette had a feeling she had to make a confession. Richard had told her things since they had started dating. She leaned forward in her chair, and said, “That is not true. Rich told me about it before any of this had happened.” She then saw the look of shock on Sean’s face, and for a moment, she wondered if she spoke out of turn.
After a moment, she saw him calm down, and take a more fatherly tone when he spoke. “Yvette, lass, ye mean to tell me that ye knew about that?” She could hear a bit of concern in his voice. It was just like the voice her real father had had. Everyone had treated her nicely when she finally realized they were trying to help her. Maybe he actually did give off the vibe, as some said, of being a father.
She nodded, and started to blush a little in embarrassment. She hadn’t expected everyone to look at her about this. “Rich told me many things about his life. He said he had learned how to cope with facing death after the first time. Guess it makes the possibility of dying less of a concern.” She started to look down, but she noticed that Jean seemed to be nodding in agreement with what she said.
The man next to Jean, Scott, looked at her, and although she couldn’t see his eyes behind his ruby colored sunglasses, she imagined they were full of concern. She sensed it in his voice, as well as a bit of authority. “Then could you help us clear this up?” He wanted to find the answer as much as everyone at the school did.
She nodded, and raised her head back up. With everything that had happened since that day, she thought she might have an idea of what it was. “I think that part of it has to deal with facing death, but not in the sense of one’s impending death.” With that, she took up the tale about that particular day, and what had passed.