((Warning: Some adult language))
An old journal, worn around the edges as if it's been flipped through too many times. The margins and many pages are full of notations of a technical nature, centering around cellular biology, including quite a variety of specific protein chains, and many short-hand references to notes elsewhere or primary journal articles. Occasionally, a regular journal/diary entry can be found, albeit still with technical scribbles all around the edges.
Can’t believe my asshole brother-in-law.
Got himself arrested for something dumb. Don’t blame my sister for dumping him, but now she’s got two kids to raise on her own. I’d like to help more, but my job only pays my bills. Wish we had the cash to move somewhere else, but knowing her, she’d be stubborn to go anyway. Even our folks couldn’t convince her to do anything for her own good, like not getting together with a dead-beat in the first place. Like father like son-in-law, I guess. I’m almost glad they’re not about anymore to see how shitty this town has become. OSHA’s a joke here. I swear the factory’s got about fifty violations in any given day, but it’s not like we got much choice. Nowhere else to go. You know, if the cops in this town cared as much about the folks who build it as they do collecting fines to fund the city, it’d be a pretty nice place. Can you believe I made it a whole two weeks without some random-ass fine? Time to start the counter over. I know there's good cops out there, but I do mean "out there," not around here.
I hate feeling powerless, but what can you do?
I’m really pissed off today, and not about what I should be pissed off about.
Jerry lost a finger at work, and I saw some gene freak getting beat up on the street. Cops drove right by, didn’t do a thing. They would have helped if this was a meta haven like Titan City, but it's not. I should be mad about that guy's finger or that beating. Instead, I’m obsessing about this idiot on the TV. There were all these “futurists” describing what can and can’t be done. They were talking about A.I. this and uploads that, and the one time they mentioned genetic stuff, these “experts” said you can’t change the dna of an adult, aside from one or two genes with intensive gene therapy. I’m sitting here thinking “of course you can! You can add or remove entire chromosomes. You just gotta think outside the box.” But all these ivy league lazy uncreative jackoffs can’t see past iteration research. They can’t make leaps. They don’t have eureka moments. I mean, really, these are the best in the world and they can’t figure out what I can figure out? How’s that make sense? These people act like they're the end-all of deep thought when they can't imagine anything not right in front of them. How'd we get to this point, where the leaders of industry are uncreative lazy idiots?
Someone should do something about that.
A.B.I.L. the idiot.
So, A.B.I.L. (that’s what I’m calling by ass-hole brother in law now, for short) got out early and managed to get himself thrown back in for something dumb. For once, it wasn’t the cops trying to fine someone for being in the wrong neighborhood, it was Abil’s own dumb fault. Again, I should be mad about that, but I’m more mad about that show from a couple weeks ago. I’ve been looking into it, and there’s no reason my method wouldn’t work. And it’d be cheap. I’ve been digging through biopunk sites on making your own equipment and it looks feasible. I’d just need a place to work. Too bad the slumlords in this town don’t have… hey, you know, that guy’s never around. And there’s a basement to this place that’s always locked up and full of trash. I wonder… the place is just going to waste.
I could do something about that.
I. See. Colors.
No, I’m not on shrooms (anymore). I got my system working. I can only do soft tissue right now. I can code for hard tissue changes, but they will only be genotype changes, not phenotype, so not much point. I decided to start with an easy one. Plug and play. I added the fourth color receptor birds have to my eyes. IT. IS. FREAKIN. AWESOME. At first colors just had more range, brighter reds than possible, etc. But, over time my brain adjusted, and added new colors entirely to express the new information. Only down-side is, some paintings and things now look like garbage… cause the painter couldn’t tell they were using different colors. Small price. But, …holy freakin hell. I just did something the “best minds” can’t figure out. Can’t patent it though. I’d either get lawyered out of the tech by big pharma, or it’d get sequestered by the military. Gotta keep this to myself. My eyes look a bit odd now, but I wear goggles at work, so who cares? Still, if my eyes are going to be noticeable already, I may as well do more with them. Increasing color recognition decreased night vision.
I’ll have to do something about that.
People are getting suspicious.
My niece kept making fun of me for wearing sunglasses indoors. It’s not my fault I… well no, it is my fault. Who cares. I got night vision now, too, and an anti-glare feature. You'd think one would cancel the other out, but not so. Already came in handy at work. Prevented an accident by noticing a fracture that was only visible because the metal got some impurities in it. Color change wouldn't have been visible before. Still a bit nearsighted, though.
I'll have to do something about that.
It's those same damn guys.
Beating up another gene-freak. This town hates them even more than it pisses on the working poor. I thought it was my imagination, but no, one of those guys was definitely the same. I saw where they went (added far vision). They're part of a… ahem… motorcycle enthusiast club. I didn't recognize them at first, cause they weren't in their cuts when beating up freaks, but now I recognize them. I got my bike worked on at their shop once. I'll be keeping an eye on them, but I couldn't do anything to help the freak. I'll admit it, I was too scared. I've never been a fighter. I can handle tough labor, but I've seen too many tough-guys get beat down quick and fast by a mob, and these guys only travel in mobs. I'm just not strong enough to fight them. Eventually, they'll find out I've become a gene-freak. Hate to admit it, but I'm afraid.
I'll have to do something about that.
Been a long time since I made an entry.
I've set my own leg and managed to convince my boss to let me work a machine for a couple weeks to heal. I made a strength-to-weight ratio enhancement, but didn't do my tendons or bones yet. I tried to chase some jerks off from harassin this homeless guy, not the bike gang, some other idiots. I managed to jump too far and when I landed I heard a snap. I don't think the gangers even noticed me. I just jumped right past them and broke my leg. I'd be laughing if it didn't hurt. I don't have the tech to do bones, but tendons might be possible, and would help.
I can't do anything about that right now, though.
My sister's the idiot now.
She's living off the state because she lost her job. I mean, the whole place she worked at was shut down, but she knew that was going to happen and didn't start looking soon enough. I'm using up my sick time to help her. I'm walking again now too. Also, I may have found a tendon solution, though still not bone. Even though I don't look any bigger than I did before, my muscles are too strong for my tendons.
I think I can do something about that, now.
Horrible waste of a day.
So, my sister hates her new job, but has a new job. I can now jump across a four-lane with no prep and not break my legs. I. Can. Move. Even scale a building due to better grip strength. But, it didn't help. I saw those bikers again, and froze. I've seen how badly they break people, try to leave them in traction or dead. I'm stronger, faster, my hearing's improved a bit (forgot to mention that, wear my hair longer to hide the pointy ears), and I can even use some of that strength without breaking thanks to the tendons (bones still an issue). Doesn't matter. It doesn't matter if I get stronger and stronger, if I'm too afraid to use it. Gene mods won't cure me of that.
I'll have to do something about that the old fashioned way.
I've. Got. Gold. Blood.
Not literally. It's still red. I was just trying to be dramatic.
Saw them again, beating up another freak. I froze again, didn't help. Saw cops drive slow right by, looking right at what was happening. Their lights turned on, and I thought, "finally" but they were just responding to a call somewhere else. Man, I got pissed. Then, I mentally zoomed in on the gene freak, some rat thing. I thought it looked odd. It was hunched over, but not in the best position to protect itself from a beating. That's when I saw it was protecting one of those homeless folks, a young one, probably not even an adult. I recognized one of the bikers as one of those other thugs. Must have been recruited. So now they're not just targeting gene freaks. I lost it. I jumped across the street, slamming one of them into a wall and heard a crunch. That one was down for the count. A quick couple jabs at another two broke some ribs. I saw the edge of a gun and threw myself into the guy, throwing him into traffic. He didn't get run over, but lost the gun when his arm snapped on the pavement. By then one of the Breaky-Rib Brothers had pulled a piece, so I threw one into the other, grabbed the rat over one shoulder and the teen over the other and bolted. The rat was in worse shape, so I dropped it off at the back door of this vet place. No, I'm not joking. The girl who runs it is the only one in town who'll treat gene-freaks. Dropped the girl off at the regular hospital. But now, I'm not sure what to do. If the bikers ID me, they'll try to get to me through my sister, my niece and nephew. I'm too known around this neighborhood… too recognizable.
I'll have to do something about that.
News is pissing me off.
There was a local news report about citizens being attacked by a new meta. The "citizens" were those bikers, and the news was makin it look like they were model citizens who were attacked for no reason. Even a cop was interviewed and said NOTHING about the beating that was going on. Maybe it wasn't one of the same cops, I don't know. Still. Viewers called in and said "Freaks should go to Titan City." They called in with city names around the world where metas are more tolerated. Though, if I'm being honest, almost any city's more tolerant than this one. Not sure why any gene freak would live here. Yes, I realized the irony of that as I was writing it. Anyhow, I've changed my skin color and hair color and stopped wearing the glasses and long hair. I don't look anything like I used to. Changed my name, too. Edward Xenios Evo. That's three culture's names there. Now, the bikers shouldn't be able to connect me to anyone else. Can't even tell what race I am… was. Had to quit my job and sell a side-mod to another to pay the bills. I gave some idle rich do-nothing a treatment for a degenerative condition of a personal nature. Gotta keep jobs like that rare, though, so I don't get noticed.
Can't risk doing too much.
Didn't take long for one of them to find me.
They still don't know who I was, but they sure know who I am. I'll skip the play-by-play. I put their lead tough in the hospital. Purist asshole deserved it, but now the rest of them are out for blood. I know the suggestion was made in hate, but going to Titan City might be just the thing. Money's better there, so I could send some home. I could probably find the missing tech I need there for the bone changes, too. Plus, plenty of metas to blend in with and test my augmentations against. I can grow nice and strong there, then… well, then… I'll be back. Maybe by then this town will have grown up. Or maybe, it'll still be the same bigoted garbage dump it's always been. But, if that's still the case when I get back, then… well…
I'll have to do something about that.
First day in Titan City….
(To Be Continued After Launch)