36 Provocation

The group all looked from the pair of men to the man on the screen thinking the same thing.

'This was the man that took their teammates and friends.'

As all of the mutants plus one newly minted wingly looked on the man finally spoke.

"I see that one of you managed to get one of my underlings to talk somehow. Not surprising all things considered. Unfortunately, I had the foresight to redirect the transport with your friends to another area." Stryker said before gracing everyone with a smirk. Devin leaned down and whispered into Beast's ear without taking his eyes off of the screen.

"Mr. McCoy, are you able to trace his signal to find his location?" Devin asked lowly.

"Possibly, though it will take some time for me to do so." Beast replied without looking away either.

"How long do you need?" Devin asked next as Beast began to type away.

"8, 9 minutes tops." Beast said as he continued to click away at the keyboard.

"You've got 5." Devin replied as he stood up fully and stepped forward.

"Mr. Stryker, I've heard a lot about you." Devin started, getting the elder man's attention.

"And who are you? Another mutant come to plague humanity?" Stryker asked as he raised an eyebrow to look at the unfamiliar face.

"My name is Devin Price and I am no mutant, though I am not without my own quirks." Devin replied as he looked at the screen with a smirk of his own now.

"And why are you here? I'm guessing you're another mutant sympathizer here to help these abominations to retrieve their leaders and friends." Stryker said as he seemed to dismiss Devin as an insignificant detail that will be dealt with.

"Oh no I am here for more selfish reasons, though you calling mutants abominations is quite the harsh statement considering your past as well as what you have done." Devin said as he crossed his arms and shook his head in disappointment.

"What is that supposed to mean?" Stryker demanded as his attention was now on Devin fully. Devin for his part only glanced away for a second as Beast held up four fingers signaling that he only needed a couple minutes more to finish.

"Oh not much. Just that I know about what happened to your son and wife. About how you got stranded in the desert and your wife's water broke." Devin started while Stryker suddenly became pale.

"Stop." Stryker asked with a tremble in his voice.

"You delivered your son and upon seeing him for the first time you found out he was a mutant. In your horror you decided to spare your wife from knowing and strangled her." Devin continued knowing that he was reopening Stryker's past regrets.

"Stop!" Stryker demanded slightly louder than his previous request.

"Then you dropped your infant son off at the closest orphanage and proceeded to crawl into a bottle while also heading the Weapon X Program." Devin was hoping to provoke Stryker even more as having him off center and unconcentrated would give them all the time they would need.

"I SAID STOP IT!" Stryker howled as he clawed at his hair, squeezing his eyes shut in the hope that it will block the memories from resurfacing.

"But that's not the end of it is it? You went back for him and now he's the lynch pin for this whole little scheme you've got going." Devin said as he smirked at Stryker.

"Who are you!" Stryker demanded as Devin and the rest could tell that Devin's claim hit the nail on the head. Devin saw a thumbs up from Beast that he had traced the transmission and Devin decided it was time to end this chat.

"I am the one you shouldn't have offended. I am the one that is about to come find you and make you wish that you had never been born. So here's your options, take that pistol of yours and put it in your mouth before pulling the trigger and save me the bullet or pray to your god, because either way you're about to meet them." Devin said as he pulled out his pistol and shoots the monitor with Stryker on it. The bang had caused a couple of the others to flinch but for the most part the majority didn't really react.

"Mr. McCoy, did you get his location?" Devin said as he re-holstered his pistol on his thigh.

"Yes, fortunately before you destroyed the main screen." Beast grumped at the mistreatment of technology.

"Then please share with the rest of the class." Devin said while rolling his hand in a 'go on' motion.

"After following the signal through a dozen different routing towers and around the world twice it finally lead to an area in the Nevada desert where an abandoned military base should be formerly located." Beast said as he brought a map up on a side screen showing where the base should be.

"How long will it take to get there with the Blackbird?" Devin asked as he looked at Cyclops.

"Approximately an hour if we leave now." Cyclops said. It was then that Devin heard a noise coming from down the corridor that leads to the control room. It was the sound of boots on concrete. Drawing his pistol and dagger got the attention from both groups.

"We've got company. Was wondering where all the goons had gone." Devin said as he leveled the gun at the door in preparation for when it opened. The sound of Wolverine's claws coming out with everyone else getting ready. Seconds passed before the doors exploded open and dozens of men ran in with guns raised which prompted the groups of mutants to either open fire or charge at the soldiers. Devin did both. Running in behind Colossus using him as a giant moving shield got Devin close without getting shot. A slice here, a stab there, and a sprinkling of bullets brought down enemy after enemy.

The sound of heavy thuds and the hiss of hydraulics announced the approach of the heavy mechs that they had seen at Devin's house. Three such machines filed in one after another. One was equipped with a giant drill while another had a pair of hydraulic clamps. The third had what looked like a jack hammer and a rivet gun. Colossus charged the drill mech while Wolverine jumped on the clamp mech leaving Devin with the Jack hammer and rivet gun combo.

Devin placed shot after shot at the cockpit with the bullets leaving white pockmarks on the clear window in front of the pilot. Devin began to concentrate the shots in the same space. Once the clip was empty, Devin holstered it while drawing his sword from his inventory and charged. Dodging flying rivets left and right Devin soon was right in front of the mech and drove the point of his sword into the cluster of white spots. It took all of a half-second for the sword to slide through the weakened barrier and into the chest of the pilot. Devin then sent a thread of fire magic down the sword and into the chest of the man, instantly incinerating the heart and lungs of the man.

Pulling his sword out, Devin looked around at the remains of the enemies which were being mopped up by various members of the group. Devin then spotted a man get up and run for the door to which Devin turned and threw his dagger end over end and into the man's back. As Devin walked over and pulled his dagger free he turned only to find several individuals staring at him and his sword.

"Where did that come from?" Kitty commented. Devin didn't have time to argue or explain. He merely stored the sword in his inventory with a wave, causing eyebrows to rise.

"We don't have time for questions. We need to get going before Stryker starts what ever plan he has in mind." Devin said as he walked out of the room leaving several confused people behind.


[Somewhere in the Nevada desert]

Stryker was monitoring the vitals for the various soldiers he had ordered to approach the members of both the x-men as well as the brotherhood. Then there was that infuriating man. How did he know? How did he know about his past when no one but he knew? Just as the darkness of his past began to encroach was when alarms began to sound as a few of the men flat-lined.

It took less than five minutes before the entire screen was full of a combination of flat-lines and critical signs. Seconds later a man in a lab coat approached with a tablet in hand.

"Sir, I do believe that our team failed." the scientist told as they looked at his boss. Stryker turned to the room and raised his voice to ask a question.

"Who made this man a scientist?" Stryker asked as he looked around.

"I did sir!" came a reply from Stryker's right. Turning to the man he saw that the man was standing at attention.

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"And who are you?" Stryker demanded. This was the last thing he needed after what just happened.

"Sir, my name is Captain Asshole, Sir!" the man replied just before a bullet made it's way into his skull.

"Great! Another asshole! Just what I need!" Stryker said as he waved his gun around in the air before leaving. The scientist wiped a drop of sweat from his brow as he managed to survive.

"And one more thing!" Stryker said as he walked back in and aimed his gun again before firing.

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