38 Enter the Labyrinth

It took an extra minute to get the other door open to free Mystique and her merry band of jackasses. Pyro had apparently had part of Blob land on his leg when Blob had fallen over from the tremors caused by the explosion and now had to be partially carried by Avalanche thanks now to a broken leg. Pyro was the one that had been running his mouth earlier so Devin figured he'd gotten his retribution.

The groups headed down the twisting tunnels that were the base. Devin figured that there would be another trap or ambush at some point as there was no way they missed an explosion like that. The sound of boots marching down the corridor caused the group to stop and look at one another before nodding. Blob took front as the other capable fighters lined up behind. Avalanche stayed with Pyro as his abilities would only endanger everyone.

Blob charged and took the brunt of the gunfire thanks to his ability while the others rushed around him after they had gotten down the hall to get into close quarters and taking the soldiers down. Each of them got two or three soldiers each. Devin had the great idea to only injure one of the last ones by snapping his arm at the elbow. Soon all of the guards were down and the one Devin had incapacitated was groaning every time his are was jostled.

"Okay, now I want to make this fast. Tell me what I want to know and you won't die. If you refuse or lie to me then my friend over there is gonna show you what a rectal exam with an adamantium knife feels like." Devin said as he hauled the man up by his shirt front. Wolverine luckily knew to play along and unsheathed the middle claw on his right hand and gave a savage smile.

"Okay, okay! I'll talk!" The man shouted as droplets of sweat popped out on his forehead. Thanks to their new "Friend" the group got a basic layout of the facility and what was going on. He didn't know what Stryker's end game play was, but he did say that he needed Xavier and Scarlet for it to work out fully. When asked about the kids and Magneto he didn't have an answer for why they were taken After getting directions to the control room Devin backhanded the man into unconsciousness and the group left.

"Why are we going to the control room?" Mystique asked as she strode next to Devin at an even pace.

"Several reasons. The first is that we will be able to hopefully control parts of the facility once we have control over it. Add to that we will be able to tell where everyone is and possibly direct the others to save our friends as well as find Stryker." Devin told as he turned the corner to see four mechas guarding the door to the control room.

"Here we go again."

***

After entering the main door there was only a short corridor to what looked like an old school lift elevator. This didn't give what was left of the rescue group hope of safe travels. Piling into the cabin wasn't too claustrophobic but the trip down was slower than a snail. Everyone tensed when a door appeared and the elevator stopped at it. Slowly the door rolled up and an empty corridor greeted them. Soon the door closed again and everyone relaxed. The tension slowly ebbing out of their bodies.

"Hate that." muttered Kitty. Another door showed up and this time they didn't tense as the door opened and this one was empty as well. After the second and third they stopped caring. On the fourth door the group wasn't even thinking of it. This proved to be a mistake as a group of guards appeared on the other side.

The two groups stood frozen in place for what felt like a day and a half. Then all hell broke loose. Punches, lightning, and shots were flying everywhere. By some grace or fortune the shots missed but the fists and shocks didn't. Soon a pile of bodies were layed out in the elevator and the girls plus Toad were standing there, their breathing accelerated due more to the surprise than the physical exertion.

"Holy crap! let's not do that again!" Kitty said as Toad nodded his head in agreement.

"Storm, where do ya think that varmint has stashed the Professor and the others?" Rogue asked as she looked around the mostly empty hall.

"I don't know Rogue, but let's see if we can find a control room or access the cameras." Storm said as she started heading down the hall.

"You think the others are alright? That was a really high elevator ride and they fell that entire way." Kitty asked as she had to walk quickly to keep pace with the two taller women.

"Don't worry sugar, them boys are all tough even that Devin guy." Rogue said with a smile of reassurance.

"Oh? And how can you tell that pray tell?" Callisto said as she smirked at Rogue. This prompted a look out the corner of Rogue's eye before she answered.

"I've seen that look in his eye in the eyes of others before and each one was a man or woman that did what ever it took to reach their goals, regardless of what had to be done. I'm sure that he won't stop till this place and everyone of Stryker's men are crushed under his heel." Rogue said as Storm nodded to show she agreed. This caused the others to momentarily pause before jogging to catch up.

Happening upon another door the group pushed through and readied for another fight only to find a long room lined with cages. Each cage held a shivering form in a thin white gown. Some had physical mutations while others looked like normal individuals. Besides the gown the other things that they all had in common was that they each were malnourished, young, and terrified.

"How can someone do something so horrendous to such young ones?" Storm whispered as she looked in horror at a child that couldn't have been more than ten years old.

"This is what we fight against. This is why we joined the Brotherhood." Callisto growled out as she slammed her hand against the side of a cage making numerous children flinch and earning dirty looks from the others.

"Lets get them out of here while we can." Rogue said as she ripped the lock off a cage and then moved on while Kitty entered slowly and cautiously to help the child within. It was moments later that all of the cages were open and all of the surviving kids and teenagers were standing in a group near the older members of the group. Searching around a muffled voice was finally heard from another room. Rogue and Storm entered to find a young girl with platinum hair surprisingly active compared to the others.

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"Let me out! I need to help my sister!" the girl shouted as Rogue reached for the lock.

"Who is your sister? We have already released everyone in the cages." Storm said as she opened the door.

"My sister isn't in a cage my sister is being forced into help that evil old man to save me." the girl said as she tried to run past the senior members only to be stopped by Rogue.

"Who is your sister?" Rogue asked as she looked into the girl's eyes.

"Emma Frost."

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