“Son, go in the house.” Deckard looked right at Aaron.
“Dad come on…”
“Spencer.” The tone told the younger man not to argue with his father. Frowning, he let Aaron’s hand go and went inside the house. After the door shut that was when Deckard finally spoke.
“I’ve been waiting for this day.”
“So, you know who I am, Rick Deckard.”
“No one outside of my wife has called me that in years. I won’t let you take her.” Rick stood and crossed his arms. He may have been older, but there was still power in the body, probably from the years of hard work. Teo jumped down and started to sniff around the closed off areas.
“I came to find out if it really was you. I’m…not sure anymore…” Aaron looked out over the ranch as uncertainty filled him. He was lost in his thoughts as he looked around at the open spaces, he hadn’t seen anything like it, ever. He grew up with parks that were groomed and made safe for children, but this open expanse of nature, it awed and overwhelmed him a bit. It also ignited that primal part of himself and he was having trouble keeping it all in check.
“Overwhelming isn’t it.”
“I’ve never really thought about it until now. We had parks where I lived, but they were mostly just for kids to play for a couple of hours. Synthetic trees are not nearly the same.”
“No, no it certainly isn’t.”
“Spencer, he really yours?”
Deckard turned his head and stared right at Aaron as he narrowed his eyes. Aaron felt like he was being assessed from top to bottom and somehow found lacking.
“Deckard, you have to help me out here. I’ve stepped into a fucking hornet’s nest with you, Rachel, Tyrell all at the middle of it. I’m fucked, one way or another.”
Deckard seemed to take a few moments to contemplate Aaron.
“Your cat, not real is he?”
Aaron smiled as he watched Teo playing with a butterfly that had come close to him. He didn’t have his claws out, curiosity lined every part of his body as he hunkered down to get ready to pounce.
“No. Robotic, but very advanced. His DNA is keyed to mine, nanites that reside in him formed a sort of mental connection between us.” Aaron smiled wide as Teo pounced at the butterfly then sat back and meowed at it as it flew away. Aaron turned to see Deckard staring at him. His face flushed and he shut down whatever he was feeling. “Teo, come,” Aaron called for his companion.
“It’s okay, you don’t have to hide here. Come on, this conversation is best inside.” Deckard left the barricade, Aaron still wasn’t sure what they were, but it didn’t matter. He followed the former Blade Runner into the house and a wide spacious kitchen. Rachel was in there cutting something up and pouring what looked, to Aaron, like real coffee, not the fake soy stuff that could be found in most cop shops. Deckard introduced him and Aaron gave Rachel a once over.
“I am. And you are a Blade Runner. How did you know?”
“Tyrell had a hologram of you, Dr. Rossi showed it to me, but I would have been able to tell you are a Replicant without it.”
“I thought the test was outdated.”
“It is. Even the New Voight-Kampf is beginning to have issues. But, I ah, I don’t need it.” Aaron frowned down at the cup that was handed to him. He took a moment then lifted the cup and took a sip. The brew was deep, rich and had a nutty, earthy flavor. He liked it a lot.
“And why’s that?” Rachel asked him as she set a piece of the cake she had been slicing in front of a chair at the old-fashioned wooden table near a wide window that let in a lot of light.
“Your scent. You have a different scent than humans.”
Rachel sat down and for a moment Aaron saw the rose-cheeked beauty that had run off with Deckard. Though she didn’t look aged, her synthetic body wasn’t programmed to age like a human, there was a depth in her eyes that spoke of age.
“You’re an Enhanced, right?” Spencer asked as he sat at the table, taking his coffee and putting entirely too much sugar and fresh milk in it. Aaron was taken aback for a moment.
“Um, yes. Aren’t you going to ruin the flavor?”
“What? I like it this way.” Spencer smiled a crooked smile as he lifted the cup and sipped.
Teo took that moment to walk around the chairs and sniff at all the occupants. When he jumped in Spencer’s lap and stretched up to nuzzle at his neck Aaron knew the cat made a new friend. Spencer just smiled as he scratched at the cat’s head.
“He’s so real. How advanced is his AI?”
“His personality was created on the Mark VI Quantum Matrix at MIT under Dr. Gideon. He has a Mark III Isodyne Systems Positronic brain. His robotics were designed and built by Dr. Rossi using the lightest synthetic mixed polymers that simulate a real cat’s skeletal structure. He made them on the Synth Seven 3D printer. His DNA matrix is a mix of my DNA, nanites that helped to let him learn about feline behavior, and synthesized animal DNA. He’s fairly advanced, and his AI leaves enough room for him to learn and develop his own personality.”
“So, Dr. Gideon used the latest in Quantum mechanic engineering to build his matrix?”
“Yes. He and Roman Michaelson consulted on how best to build his matrix. They decided to integrate the brain with the skeletal structure at the same time so the nanites could quickly build the simulation of nerves and cartilage. He moves like a real cat and many of his personality motivations are like that of a real cat. The main difference is his link to me and our mental connection. I can send him simple commands, which he obeys because he wants to. Because of our bond.”
“How did Dr. Gideon get past any issues of the artificial nature of AI and the want of a simulated ‘real’ cat?”
Aaron went to answer but the looks that Rachel and Deckard were giving him told him that he and Spencer had already gone over their heads.
“I think maybe we should discuss this another time.”
“So are you a scientist?”
“I went to school for Quantum and mechanical engineering as well as psychology.”
“How did you end up as a Blade Runner?” Spencer’s eyes were sparkling with interest, and Aaron could tell their conversation about Teo’s mechanics had excited him intellectually. Aaron’s heart pounded a little as he set the coffee down and pushed the plate with the cake aside as he leaned on the table.
“It’s difficult to get your doctorate when the board that ratifies your dissertation rejects it outright just because you are an Enhanced. There a few options for us and some can hide their traits better than others. It was, go into some kind of law enforcement, or get shipped out to the Mars Colonies.”
“That’s not fair. You couldn’t help what happened to you.” Spencer frowned as he set his fork down on his plate.
“No, it isn’t. And that brings me here. Deckard, I can’t help if you aren’t honest with me.”
“What do you want to know?”
“Spencer,” Aaron nodded to the younger man, “Did you use a surrogate?”
“Deckard, what you’re implicating is impossible.”
“Is it? Tyrell didn’t give her a kill date, and we found out she could conceive. What if, what if we’ve been wrong all this time about Replicants.” Deckard took his wife’s hand and smiled at her.
“Only once, though, could I conceive. My beautiful boy Spencer. He’s amazing and I never expected anything like that to happen. We tried, for a while, after Spencer turned two, but it just didn’t happen.” Rachel smiled softly at her son and Aaron thought back to all the research Tyrell was doing on reproduction and genetics.
“So then you were given an artificial womb?”
“Yes. And I’ll never regret any of my life, Mr. Hotchner. I would do it all over again. Just because someone built me, does that make me not human? I’ve created new memories, learned what my emotions mean, cried when I held Spencer in my arms the first time. I feel love, I feel sadness and joy. These weren’t stimulated by the false memories of a childhood I never lived, they were stimulated by coming here, living, and learning what my place in the world is.”
“You have power here, Hotchner, but as I said, I will defend my family whatever you decide to do.”
Aaron sat back and sipped his coffee while he watched Teo cuddling with Spencer. He wasn’t sure what that was about. While he would give affection to those he liked, he never sat in anyone’s lap other than Aaron’s. He had barely warmed up to wrapping around Emily’s neck and keeping her calm in air traffic, but at the office and in his hovercar, he’d stay with him.
“Your cat seems to like my Son,” Deckard said and when Spencer scratched at Teo’s head and the little furball started to purr, he felt that same primal attraction. Deckard was looking at him hard. Aaron just sipped his coffee and tried to tamp down on that other part of himself.
“Rachel, I need to ask you if you know anything about Tyrell creating other Nexus 6’s like yourself.”
“I know he was doing some private research, and he’d be gone for long periods of time, but he never confided in me to what he was doing. I’m not even sure he was going to tell me that I could have children. Nothing Tyrell was doing before he died made any sense to me.”
“Do you know if he kept all of his research there at Tyrell? Did he have any place he’d go to where he was doing research in private?”
“I’m sorry Mr. Hotchner, I don’t know.”
“Please, just call me Hotch. I’m not going to do anything right now. I need to understand what is going on and what the Committee is so afraid of. I’d like to talk to you more. There are a few techniques I’d like to try to jog your memory, with your permission of course.” Aaron needed more answers than what he was getting right at that moment.
The silent tension around the table kept Aaron on edge. A whole conversation took place in glances between the three adults. He had a feeling they wanted some privacy.
“Why don’t I give you some time to talk.”
“Do you want to see our library?” Spencer picked Teo up and stood with the pliant cat in his arms. Aaron didn’t even know what to do with that, and what was going on with that. He lifted a brow and smiled.
“I’d love to.” The smile Spencer gave him made him swallow hard, he curled his fingers into his palms, his nails digging in, he tried to keep calm as he stood and followed Spencer out of the small dining room.
“It’s not huge or anything, but it’ll give them time to talk.” Spencer smiled again at him and Aaron had to turn away a moment as they walked into a den-like room with rich deep set shelves that were packed with printed books. Aaron moved to a shelf and read many of the titles.
“The Dao of Zen?” Aaron quirked the side of his mouth as he slid the book out and looked through it. “In the original Japanese, no less.”
“You read Japanese?”
“Yes. And a couple of others.” Aaron wasn’t looking at Spencer as he read through the book. He felt the younger man moving around the room. Teo had decided he’d had enough as he jumped on the back of a chair, then up on Aaron’s shoulder.
“He’s bigger than a normal, or what I assume to be normal, Norwegian Forest cats have a unique herding trait. Do you think I could borrow him when I help bring in the herd? It would be fascinating to see if he has those traits.”
“Maybe. You’d have to film it for me.”
“Hmm,” Spencer moved around Aaron brushing up against him. A flare of want went through Aaron so fast he had to grab onto something to keep steady. “Maybe I will.”
Aaron felt that Spencer knew what he was feeling. A blush crept up on his face as he put the book back. He couldn’t help watching Spencer’s long fingers lightly brush along the titles on the shelves and felt his eyes slit and his breath go shallow. He had to get away or he’d do something really stupid.
“I ah, I’m going to go see what your parents decided.” Aaron swallowed as he practically ran out of the room, Spencer’s soft chuckle followed him and Teo protested the sudden movement. When he made it back to the kitchen he leaned against a counter and looked at the couple.
“Alright, I’ll do whatever you need. If it helps, I’ll do it.”
“Thank you.” Aaron slipped his hands in his pockets as his mind quickly went through a plan of action. First thing was to get to a room so he could relax and let everything percolate for a few hours, then he needed sleep. “Is there someplace I can get a room close by?”
“Yes, the O’Neil ranch, it’s about five miles down the road. They have bungalows they rent out all year long. Talk to Jackson O’Neil, tell him I sent you. He’ll be fair.” Deckard offered.
“Again, thanks.” Aaron pushed off from the counter and started to walk out of the door. He turned back to look at the couple and wiped a hand down his face. “Look, I don’t know what to do here, I’m going to be back tomorrow and hopefully I can have answers. You don’t deserve what the Committee has planned, which I don’t know much about, but it won’t be good. I’m fucked no matter what happens, but I’m hoping I can figure out a way out of this for you.” Aaron gave them a wan smile before he turned once again to leave.
Getting in his vehicle he pulled up the GPS tracker and erased everything about the trip, then he opened it up and pulled out the microchip that transferred all the data from his vehicle to Committee headquarters. The vehicle only did the download once a day at night, he was hoping he got to the information before it downloaded. Taking the microchip, he held it in his hand and looked at it for a long time. He took one last look at the sprawling ranch and crushed the microchip. He set himself down a path that even he didn’t know where it would lead. He just hoped there was minimal damage at the end of all this.
Aaron turned on his vehicle and maneuvered away from the Deckard ranch and went in search of the O’Neil ranch, once he got in a room he knew he was going to have to make some more hard decisions. His old life was at an end, he had no idea what his future was going to be.
Aaron had just stepped out of the bathroom with a towel around his waist. He used the cleansing gel he kept in his kit. It was a product that had been created when water conservation had been at its all-time high. It was also a standard product for all military personnel as well as the Mars colonists and miners. One could rub the gel on their body, let it dry, then quickly peel it off. Rubbing a soft cloth over the body would get any leftover pieces off the skin. Aaron didn’t mind using it on runs, it was convenient, but he always preferred a hot shower. He was so tired, though, that he decided to get ready for bed and hoped that answers would come in the morning.
What Aaron didn’t expect was the knock on the door. Forgetting for a moment he was only in a towel, he moved to open it.
“Spencer.” Aaron didn’t even try to hide the shock in his voice.
“Can I come in?” Spencer didn’t even hide the fact that he was eyeing Aaron up and down. Aaron took a moment to think about it, then stepped aside to let the younger man in.
“What are you doing here?” Aaron kept that tight control on his attraction to the younger man as he started to step away to at least put on some pants.
“I could feel your attraction to me, Aaron.” Spencer stepped closer and reached out to finger the towel around Aaron’s waist. “I feel it too. I don’t know what it means, but I wouldn’t mind trying to find out.”
“Spencer,” Aaron grabbed the wrist of the hand that was twining in the waistband of the towel. If they weren’t careful there would be no going back. Aaron wouldn’t be able to keep his control any longer. “We just met. We hardly know each other.”
“Does it matter.” Spencer took a few steps closer and Aaron backed up. Their eyes locked, then Spencer smiled that blinding smile and Aaron didn’t even try to hide the growl that rose up in his throat.
“You’re playing with fire Spencer. You don’t get what I am, the needs I have.”
“Maybe I want to get burned. Maybe I want to feel something more.” Spencer kept backing Aaron up until his back hit the wall, thankfully not where a dresser or table was. He kept his eyes on Spencer as the man didn’t stop and his fingers kept playing with the towel. The fingertips brushing his skin was driving him mad and he knew, he knew if Spencer pulled the towel away there would be no going back. He reached out once again and tried to pull Spencer’s hand away, but the younger man was stronger than he seemed.
“Why fight what you feel? I’m not fragile, I also know my own mind. Let go Aaron.” Spencer leaned in those last few inches and kissed Aaron, while those maddening fingers slipped under the towel and pulled it away. Aaron’s control snapped as a growl rumbled in his chest and he pushed Spencer towards the bed. Uncurling his fingers, he ripped the shirt Spencer was wearing to shreds with his nails as he toppled them onto the bed.
“No regrets, then.” Aaron’s voice was low and gruff as he ground down against Spencer’s groin and took his mouth in a kiss that had the other man moaning. A tongue snaked inside his mouth and ran along his teeth. special attention was paid to his sharp incisors which had him gripping Spencer’s hips in a hard hold.
“No regrets.” Spencer wrapped his legs around Aaron’s waist looking for more friction. This spurred Aaron on as he scraped his teeth across Spencer’s jaw, and down his chest. A rumble built in his chest as he took an already erect nipple in his mouth. Sucking and biting, he had Spencer squirming under him in no time.
Aaron bit and sucked marks all along Spencer’s chest and abdomen with pleas from the younger man for more. Aaron stood and hooked his fingers in the waistband of the younger man’s form-fitting leggings. The material was soft and breathable but hugged every part of Spencer’s lower half to its fullest effect. Aaron knew his eyes had changed and the longer he was in Spencer’s presence the more animalistic traits came to the surface. He wanted to tear through the pants, to get to what he wanted, but he schooled himself just enough that he was able to roughly pull them off.
His cock was hard and aching as he looked down at the now naked form of Spencer Deckard. Warm golden toned skin told of his time on the Ranch, the fine body hair made Aaron shiver as he ran his hands up the younger man’s legs. The long, slightly thin cock was hard and laying against Spencer’s stomach, pre-come glistening in the garish yellow light from the light above the head of the bed. Shoulder length soft, curly hair was fanned out underneath his head. And the face, Aaron could get lost staring at the beautiful face. Large hazel eyes were following his every move and each time he touched Spencer, those soft pink lips fell open in a gasp.
A part of Aaron wanted to take his time, to learn every single inch of the boy’s body, but that dark aching need wanted him to take of the feast that was before him. Snatching up a packet from his satchel, he applied the protection, then grabbed Spencer’s hips and rolled him onto his stomach.
“Get in the center of the bed,” Aaron’s voice was deep and husky as the want of Spencer filled his whole being. Spencer quickly complied and Aaron groaned at the sight before him. He kneed up on the bed and lowered his head to bite and mark each firm, perfect globe of his lover’s ass. The scent of Spencer’s sex made him shiver as he pulled those firm cheeks apart. Darting his tongue out he licked a stripe across that dark puckered hole.
“Fuck,” Spencer shouted as he gripped the sheets under him.
Aaron went back in and started to lick. He pushed the tip of his tongue inside the tight entrance. Slowly he pushed in again and again, opening the hole till he was able to get his tongue part way in. When he did thick lubricant met his tongue and Aaron was both surprised and aroused. He was too far gone to stop and ask, but when he tasted Spencer’s fluids it sent his mating instincts into high gear. Getting up on his knees, he slid a finger inside Spencer, who lifted his ass in the air a little more.
“Tempting thing aren’t you?” Aaron’s growl was primal and deep as he gripped his cock and stilled a moment to keep himself from cumming too soon. He scooted between Spencer’s legs and lined up his cock to the young man’s ass. He pushed in unitl he was past that tight ring of muscle, then he dug his nails into Spencer’s waist.
“Oh fuck, oh fuck,” Spencer kept repeating as he pushed back against Aaron’s cock. Sliding all the way in until he was flush against Spencer’s ass Aaron reached across and gripped Spencer’s shoulders then started to fuck into him harder and harder. He didn’t even wait until the younger man was used to him before he let himself loose.
The noises that Spencer was making spurred him on as he kept a grip on one shoulder, then used his other hand to scratch down Spencer’s back making him arch as he pushed back into Aaron. His cock was leaking and hard but he was finding no relief. He reached under him to grab his cock, but Aaron growled.
“No touching.” He gripped Spencer’s wrist to stop him from touching his cock. Closing his eyes and letting his head fall on his shoulder Aaron moaned at the feeling of tightness as he pushed in and out of Spencer’s ass. After a few minutes of hard fucking, he felt the pull in his thighs alerting him to how close he was. He leaned down and licked a stripe up Spencer’s spine letting the taste of him flood his senses.
Spencer was writhing under him, begging for more, pushing back as much as he could against Aaron, trying to find relief for his aching cock. Aaron laid across his back as his movements slowed, to long, deep thrusts, pushing Spencer down onto the bed.
“So close,” Aaron growled again as he scraped his teeth against Spencer soft flesh of his neck. Thrusting down hard he felt Spencer vibrating under him, and using his free hand he scratched his nails down the younger man’s side, making him scream as he thrust against the mattress under him. Aaron sank even more into his primal side as his orgasm rolled through him, he bit down on Spencer’s neck as he came deep inside his ass. Aaron tasted blood as he thrust a few more times, riding out his release.
“Fuck,” Spencer cried out into the pillow under his head, his hands had curled around the bars of the bed. Aaron pulled off him and roughly turned him on his back, then took the hard cock in his mouth as he held Spencer down by his hips. He took the cock all the way in and let the head hit the back of his throat and moaned in pleasure. Curling his hands around Spencer’s waist he gripped tightly as he bobbed his head a few times until he felt the cock swell in his mouth and knew Spencer was going to come.
“Aaron,” Spencer gripped the sheets, his body covered in sweat from the effort, then he thrust as much as he could into the hot mouth surrounding him. Finally, when Aaron pressed his tongue along the length of him and hollowed his cheeks, Spencer strangled his cry as he came down Aaron’s throat. The man released him then moved up his body and claimed his mouth in hard, bruising kisses. A tongue swept inside his mouth tasting him.
“Shit,” Aaron laid his head on Spencer’s forehead, panting. “I’m sorry, I hurt you…”
“Shh, I’m not fragile, Aaron. I came here because I wanted to. It’s crazy that I feel so drawn, but I knew what I was getting into.” Aaron pushed off and sat on the edge of the bed. His hand shook as he wiped his face. The shame that always came over him for giving in to his animalistic side flared up. He hung his head and tried to calm his breathing.
He almost flinched when Spencer touched his shoulder and leaned against him.
“Hey, are you okay?”
The lie was on the tip of his tongue as he turned to look at Spencer. He watched the play of emotions on the younger man’s face and realized at that moment that he could very easily fall for him. He was completely lost in that moment. Nothing was what it should have been and he knew at that moment that things were going to get ugly, quickly
“I..don’t like that part of myself.” Aaron surprised even himself with his confession. Something he had always danced around with Haley, but he never came out and said it.
“Because you gave into a primal part of who you are? I didn’t complain, and it was the best sex I’ve ever had. You did nothing wrong Aaron, and I encouraged it.”
Aaron stood and paced his heart racing. Teo sensed his distress and ran over to him, pacing right with him.
“Is that why you’re here? Because I’m exotic, different, a freak?” He lashed out as his gut churned.
“You think so little of yourself? Of me? I know we just met, and I know we barely know each other but, I would think in our short conversations you would have seen the respect I have for you. You are not a freak. You didn’t ask for this.” Spencer stood up and stopped Aaron mid-stride. “I see a strong, intelligent person who has had to endure more than most. I see a man struggle for his right to be heard and taken seriously. I see a man in an impossible situation. I see a beautiful man that I want to get to know.” Spencer took one of Aaron’s hands and lifted it, kissing each finger, and moving in closer. “I don’t know what this is, or why it’s so strong between us so quickly, but I regret nothing.”
Aaron sighed as he pulled Spencer in his arms and laid his head on the young man’s shoulder. He didn’t know what was happening either, or why he felt so complete being with Spencer, but he did.
“I need a real shower. Then we should talk, that is…do you want to stay?”
Spencer held Aaron closer to him and took a shuddering breath.
“Yes, I want to stay.”
The Nexus 5’s performed better than expected. Though the trauma of childbirth has made them expire quicker than their programmed kill date, they do offer a solution to humanity’s dwindling birth rates. I think I can improve upon it with the Nexus 6’s. Though, the nanite carrying DNA of the Replicants has somehow gotten their programming confused. The reports that I’ve been seeing regarding the children are odd, but not disturbing. I did not foresee that happening. I have all hope that this latest advancement in Replicant engineering will see better results. For our sakes, it must work.
Personal Diary of Dr. Eldon Tyrell.
Aaron was pulling on some loose sleep pants as Spencer stepped out of the bathroom. Some fresh bed linens had been brought to Aaron after he called the front desk. He stood and went over to Spencer with a palm-sized healing device in his hand.
“I ah, I’m sorry about…” Aaron looked at the bite mark and clamped down on his guilt. “Let me?”
Spencer smiled softly and bent his head to expose the bite mark. Aaron lifted the device and turned it on. It emitted an advanced LED light that helped to speed-up healing in minor wounds. He then sprayed a light coating of an antibiotic. He set the device aside and ghosted his fingers over Spencer’s neck.
“Hey, I’m fine. You don’t have to worry. Plus I don’t get sick, ever.” Spencer laid his hand on Aaron’s and gave him a reassuring look. He was disappointed when Aaron pulled back and pulled a little into himself. He wasn’t going to push, not yet at least.
“I’m still trying to wrap my head around the fact that a Replicant can have children.”
Spencer watched Aaron’s face a moment then moved away to grab the satchel he had brought with him and set aside when he had come to Aaron’s hotel room. He pulled out his PDD and some comfortable pants and t-shirt and slipped them on first. He grabbed the PDD and worked on it a moment, then looked up at Aaron.
“I did some digging. Well, I’ve been doing some digging, I want to show you something.” Spencer grabbed some pillows and sat back on the bed, encouraging Aaron to sit next to him. The Blade Runner was feeling out of his element, usually, the men he took to bed didn’t want to stay with him, and he, them, but Spencer was still there, and had even brought, much to Aaron’s surprise, a couple of changes of clothes.
He settled on the bed and Spencer leaned in close, bringing up a file on his PDD.
“Over the years almost 6596 Replicants have been…retired, or reintegrated. Most of them, something had gone wrong with their programming and they turned on the humans that had retained them. However, there are 285 female Replicants that had no history of violence or trying to ‘run away’ so to speak. Most of these 285 were used in the teaching programs, domestic uses, or as pleasure androids, on the Mars and Moon colonies. During the first years of the colonies, birth rates had dropped significantly from what they were on earth. Out of the 9000 early colonists, only 600 of the 4000 women gave birth. The numbers declined from there as more people left Earth to go to the colonies. But, between the years of 2056 and 2075, there was an influx of children that have no medical records associated with any of the colonists.” Aaron took the PDD from Spencer and read through his research. Over two hundred unaccounted for babies had been born in the colonies. In those same years, several Blade Runner units were dispatched to the colonies to retire several Replicants. The implication was not lost on Aaron.
“Are you saying Tyrell corporation was seeding the colonies with Replicants that could give birth?”
“I’m saying I don’t think I’m the first or the last. But, it’s being covered up by the Earth Government, that’s for sure.”
Aaron kept reading through what Spencer had found and his frown deepened.
“Many of these female Replicants expired on their own well before their kill dates, or even before the Blade Runners made it to the colonies.”
“You see that too.”
“So, if we look at just these numbers, we can make the assumption that the Replicant’s who may have had children, their bodies couldn’t deal with the trauma of childbirth. They shut down on their own. But, whatever Tyrell did to your mother, he figured out a way to stem the trauma, for her to move past it. I’d need to show Dave the research, to have a full diagnostic done on Rachel.” Aaron stood and paced, a frown forming as he was reviewing the data.
“Aaron, that’s my mother you’re talking about.”
Aaron stopped his pacing and closed his eyes a moment, trying to think. He handed back the PDD to Spencer and processed the information he just read this whole situation he was in was getting more complicated by the minute. He slipped back on the bed as he scrubbed his face.
“There’s something else that I’ve been looking into. All of the Replicant hybrid children, I dug up hidden reports from colony doctors. Most of them are intersex. One doctor by the name of Dr. Maxwell Jones, he posited that the DNA from the Replicant mother somehow mixed differently with the human DNA and it got confused. There were some anomalies with a few of the children, but they weren’t listed anywhere. But, the ones that he personally examined showed a high rate of intersex. While they had the physical characteristics of one gender, there are indications that both sex organs are present. Some had fully developed wombs and cervixes, some only had the outward characteristics of both sex glands. It’s a mixed bag and the doctor was pretty adamant about protecting these children. He knew if the government ever got a hold of them…”
“They might have been experimented on.” Aaron turned to look at Spencer and thought about what happened during the sex. “Spencer, are you saying…?”
“I think so. But, I’ve never gone to a doctor, never had to. My mother opted to do the at-home vaccinations and, like many parents, took the required classes on how and when to administer them. Other parents in the area brought their kids to her as they didn’t want to have to drive into the city just to get the required immunizations.” Spencer put his PDD aside, then moved to straddle Aaron’s waist. “I know this is all overwhelming and I know you didn’t sign on for this, but she’s my mother Aaron. You can’t take her, she hasn’t done anything wrong other than trying to live a good life. Please, as my Father said, you have all the power here.”
Aaron reached up and wrapped his arms around Spencer and pulled him closer. He felt very protective of the younger man. He knew Spencer was right. If they ever got ahold of him, well Aaron didn’t want to think what might happen if the Government ever did get a hold of Spencer, or Rachel.
“Why do you think our attraction is so strong? I’ve never felt like this with anyone, not even my fiance.” Aaron winced thinking about Haley. But, it was true. While there was an instant attraction, it wasn’t this visceral, like what he was feeling for Spencer.
“You have a fiance?” Spencer pulled away and frowned at Aaron.
The Blade Runner let his head fall back on the headboard as he gripped Spencer’s thighs. He hadn’t talked about Haley much, not even to his partner. While he liked Prentiss, he had not gotten used to a partner and didn’t trust her with much of himself. Spencer, though, was different. He felt like he could tell the younger man anything. It scared him some that he felt so trusting of the Human-Replicant hybrid. He took a deep breath and called for Teo. The cat moved to stretch out along Aaron’s side.
“Had, actually. She ah, she died.”
“I’m so sorry. What happened?” Aaron was silent for a long while as he buried the fingers of his left hand in Teo’s fur, grounding himself, he kept his right on Spencer. After a while of silence, he looked in the concerned eyes and felt a tear slip down.
“Sean was a Replicant my father had commissioned to protect me. I was given him when I was twelve. My father, Marcus Hotchner, Esquire, was getting numerous death threats. The kinds of cases he took were less than…ethical. Sean did what he was made to do, he protected me very well. We became close, I thought of him like a brother.
“A few months ago Haley was cooking and we were arguing over children. She wanted them, I wanted to adopt. I told her I wasn’t going to pass on my DNA to a child. She had a knife in her hand and turned so fast…then Sean….Haley was dead.”
Spencer reached out and wiped the tears off Aaron’s face.
“She was safe. She knew, everything about me and accepted me. She let me…” Aaron closed his eyes and rolled his neck, trying to ease the tension. “She let me satisfy that darker side, the side you saw tonight, with other men. She tried to understand why I kept trying to fight to get my dissertation accepted. She thought I was going to do something different, but with so few options.”
“You became a Blade Runner.”
“Aaron, you aren’t alone.”
“We hardly know each other Spencer. What are you going to do? Come with me to Los Angeles? I don’t know if I can go back knowing what I do now. I can’t take Rachel in, I can’t let them get their hands on you. I took the tracker out of my vehicle. I had disabled Teo’s tracker a long time ago. But, it doesn’t mean they won’t find me, or your parents. There were files on them in the LASF and it wasn’t too hard for me to figure out where you were. But, Spencer, I’ll do everything I can to protect you and your family.”
Spencer laid down and wrapped his arms around Aaron.
“I trust you, Aaron.” Aaron sighed as he wrapped his arms around Spencer. All of this was happening too fast, but he felt like he needed to follow it through, for better or worse. He knew then he couldn’t let anyone get their hands on Spencer. He didn’t trust the Committee and what they would do to him. Aaron tried to think as he caressed Spencer’s back, he felt a strong protective streak in him. That animal part of himself knew he had claimed Spencer for his very own, but the rational part, the human part wanted to get to know him more. He wished it had been under better circumstances that they had met. Aaron was realistic and knew things were about to get very messy.
Aaron shifted down on the bed so that he was lying flat. Spencer groaned a protest at the movement and Aaron couldn’t help the chuckle that escaped. He waved a hand over the lights to turn them off then held the younger man closer. It was a while before he fell asleep, his mind wouldn’t shut off as he tried to make a plan. He just hoped he could save everyone.
Aaron was waking up to a warm body wrapped around him. When he slowly opened his eyes he saw Teo curled up on Spencer’s hip, purring softly. He had never done that to Haley.
“Morning.” Spencer tucked himself even tighter into Aaron. The young man grumbled as he shifted. Teo meowed at him then crawled up Aaron’s chest.
“You made a friend out of Teo. He likes you.”
“He’s kinda awesome.”
Aaron snorted at the use of the old-fashioned word.
“What? I like that word, people should use it again. Did you know that it originates from the late 16th century? And it is a uniquely American word that went out of fashion after the late 1800s, but was brought back into the American lexicon during the 1960s with the rise of the hippie movement that originally started to rise against the current system that oppressed people of color and women. Then again the 1980’s during the rise of the second British Music Invasion….and I’m rambling. Sorry.”
Aaron was smiling down at him as he carded his fingers in Spencer’s hair.
“You don’t have to stop on my account. I sometimes find I ramble, especially when I come across a new engineering breakthrough. My colleagues often just shake their head and move on.”
“Oh, so you’re a nerd?” Spencer smiled that crooked smile that Aaron was quickly finding endearing.
“And there you go using another antiquated word.”
“It’s one of my favorite things. Words, that is. I like learning about them and understanding where they came from and their context. Also how words change over time. It’s rather fascinating.”
Aaron dislodged Teo, under a lot of protesting, then pulled Spencer on top of him.
“You should go home. I’m sure if they knew where you were they wouldn’t be happy.” Aaron cupped Spencer’s cheek, he didn’t want to let him go but knew he had to.
“I’m 23 almost 24 Aaron. My parents gave up trying to control me a long time ago. They trust me and trust the decisions I make. They also are not stupid and know that I have a healthy sex life, even if they don’t want to know about it. But, you are right I should get home. I have a project I need to put the finishing touches on and submit it.”
Spencer slid off Aaron, who tried not to feel disappointed. But, he hoped that they would get more chances like the previous night. He watched Spencer slip into his clothes then walk to the bathroom. His mind was still in turmoil, but he knew what he wasn’t going to do, he just didn’t know what he was going to do, or how to get out of his agreement with the Committee.
“I’ll be right behind you,” Aaron said as he and Spencer switched places. It wasn’t long before they were both making their way back to Deckard’s ranch. Aaron made sure he had his equipment for what was going to come next.
When Spencer stopped his bike near Aaron’s hovercar, then came up to him and kissed his cheek as he got out of it, he knew the younger man had lost his mind.
“Spencer, your parents!”
“And? I can make my own choices Hotch. Now, don’t hurt my mother.” Spencer sauntered into the house and Aaron knew he was lost. He shook his head and reached in the back of his vehicle and took out a locked box, then walked in the house. When he got inside, Spencer was handing him a cup of coffee and smiling. “I’ll make breakfast.”
“You don’t have to do that Spencer. I could go to a food stand.”
“I’m not going to let you eat out of one of those places. Sit, I’ll cook.” Aaron set the case down at the end of the long table and sipped his coffee as he watched Spencer maneuver around the kitchen. He pulled ingredients out of the cold prep unit, and eggs off the counter. Aaron watched fascinated. He hadn’t had farm fresh eggs since he was a child and their cook used to go get them from a small local place that had a few chickens. They were incredibly pricey and only usually for Sunday’s as a treat. Sipping his coffee he wondered where Deckard and Rachel were. As if sensing what he was thinking Spencer turned to him.
“Dad’s probably out checking on the herds. We moved them up the ridge about five miles away. Don’t worry, they are very protected. No one around would dare touch them. Mom is probably working in her vineyard. She’ll be harvesting some of the grapes soon.”
“You do a lot here don’t you?”
“Dad took a long time to research what we could grow. We keep many of the fresh vegetables but sell the abundance at the food stalls on the weekends. Mom’s wines are a local favorite, and she sells to some of the nicer bars and restaurants in Billings, Missoula and Great Falls. Dad has a personal flying transport that they use to distribute.”
“And the coffee?”
“I have a custom greenhouse that I built when I was eleven. I had read up on the dying farms in South America and Africa. I wanted to figure out a way to keep the crops from dying completely and yet, it would take up less room. Different bean varieties like different climates. My two greenhouses have two different types of crops. One is the heirloom Columbia variety that likes humid, rainforest type weather. I figured out how to engineer the greenhouse to keep a controlled rainforest environment, be able to grow many plants, but in a smaller amount of space. The second is a hybrid that started out as the old Arabica and Kona varieties. Then the hybrids changed a bit after multiple generations. It got the name, Keoke Berry. I’ve taken the Keoke Berry and tracked down a very rare sample of the Blue Mountain. I’ve been growing them together and I think I’ve been able to make a new variety. It’s been a slow process, but the results are what you’re drinking now.”
Spencer had kept talking as he chopped vegetables, beat the fresh eggs with a little of the fresh sheep’s milk. He also had some cheese. Aaron liked listening to him as he sipped his coffee.
“Sounds like you have a lot going here.” Aaron looked around the ranch house and saw holo pictures as well as old fashioned photographs. He saw unique local art and the overall feel of a home. It felt like there had been a lot of love here in this place. He was lost in thought when a plate was set before him.
“Vegetable omelet, lamb bacon, and some potatoes fried in duck fat. We have a pond that attracts a lot of wild ducks. We thin them out once a year, but slowly they are coming back. Just like some of the trout in the lakes and ponds in the area. Though we’ve fished a lot of the larger lakes almost to extinction, thanks to some genetic work from Dr. Rossi, we were able to save some of the wild trout populations around here. Now you have to have a permit and are only allowed a small number per year. There’s a fishing waiting list years long. And if you can get it, even though it is also very pricey, the flavor of the seafood is amazing.”
“So, you’re a conservationist?”
Spencer sat down with his own plate and slowly ate.
“Trying to be. We’ve nearly run almost all of our fish, land animals and birds almost all to extinction. But, with many parts of the US having the population moved off to the colonies, there are real efforts to save, or even bring back what we’ve destroyed. I love where I grew up, but I’ve seen the historical records of what it used to look like with the wildlife and it was even more beautiful. The land is recovering, but it’s slow.”
“What would you like to do Spencer?” Aaron found he liked talking to Spencer more than he thought he would. He was another scientist, and while their fields were different, he could understand Spencer. It was nice to be able to indulge that side of himself, which he had never been able to do as a Blade Runner. He picked up a bit of the egg and took a bite and practically moaned in pure pleasure.
“I don’t know. I like trying to save something of this place. Earth. We’ve done so much damage, and at one time we, as humans, tried to get past our greed and consumption, but too many leaders that played with laws that repealed the environmental protections. It’s only been in the last twenty years that the threat of losing so much has finally made them listen. Stopping the oil drilling and the fracking in the ’50s was a huge step forward. With our dependence on oil broken, we’ve had a chance to at least try to repair things. What about you? What would you like to do?”
Aaron continued to eat, impressed with Spencer’s cooking skill. He thought about what he wanted to do with his life if he had the choice.
“Get my doctorate in Quantum Engineering. Now I know we have the Tesla coils that run most of our technology, but I was working on a smaller, Quantum engine that could power a whole kitchen and the output of energy would be infinitesimal. It could revolutionize so much of our technology, but it’ll take a few more years. The Quantum computers that run Tyrell have shown that Quantum Engineering is viable, but not many people have the skill for it.”
“And I bet you do. Your goal isn’t mutually exclusive from mine. Low energy output would clean up so much of our over polluted cities.”
“Yeah, but it’s just not in the cards for me.”
Spencer reached over and Aaron was going to take a bite, he put his hand on Aaron’s and made him look up.
“It isn’t fair what they do to you, to all Enhancers. But, I want to be there for you Aaron.”
Aaron smiled sadly as he continued to eat in silence. Talking about his wants and dreams always made him sad for what his life could have been. He wasn’t going to dwell on it, not when Deckard and Rachel walked in the door at that moment.
Rachel smirked at him, which made him blush deeply. He knew Mom wasn’t stupid, Deckard glared at him but didn’t say anything.
“Hotch. I see that Spencer made you his special breakfast. He doesn’t make that for everyone.”
“MOM!” Spencer blushed as he looked down at his plate, his face red.
“Spencer, you’re an adult and who you spend your time with is your own business.” Rachel moved into the kitchen and poured herself a cup of the coffee then sat at the table with them. Deckard also got a cup and came over.
“So, what are these tests you want to do on my Rachel?” Deckard kept a steady gaze on Aaron as he sipped his coffee.
“I promise you they aren’t invasive, but I’m going to try to jog her memory, to find out if there is any information on the others like herself.”
“And if it isn’t there? What are you going to do?”
Aaron sat back and finished his coffee and pushed his plate away. He had thought long and hard all night because he knew Deckard was going to ask this question of him.
“That’s what I said. If I can track down the others, I’m hoping to bargain with the Committee. You would all be safe.”
“No. Hotch, I cannot let you do that. I can’t let you jeopardize your life for mine. I’ve had a good life here. If you promise that you can keep Spencer safe, I’ll go.”
“No! Rachel I won’t let you do that.” Deckard shoved off from the table.
“It’s okay Rick, we knew this day might come.”
She stood and stopped him, they talked in hush tones as Aaron tried to pay attention to anything other than what was happening at the end of the table. It was a good long while before Rachel turned back to him.
“Do what you need to do Hotch. I’m ready.”
Spencer cleared the plates and put them in the sonic cleaner, then sat with his father, still in the room, but gave Aaron and Rachel space.
The tests were true to Aaron’s word, they weren’t invasive and each one helped Rachel concentrate and remember things she wouldn’t have otherwise.
“Okay, this last one is something that was created as a therapy for PTSD patients in the early 20th and 21st centuries. Its called EMDR and it has been modified and reintroduced as a control therapy for Replicants that only have minor issues. It helps to reset the positronic brain and lifts any block that has caused a small amount of mental discord. Sometimes it’s memories that the Replicant would rather forget, or their brain has reprogrammed itself in some way to block a traumatic event that has caused their malfunction. For you, we are going to try to reach your deeper memories. Okay?”
Rachel took a breath and sat back in the chair she was in and looked at the device in front of her.
“Now, when I turn this on, I want you to follow just the green dots, okay? I’m going to ask you a series of questions but keep your eyes on the green dots.”
Aaron set the small computer like monitor in front of Rachel. He clicked a series of keys and a bright grid showed up on the screen. Three dots in different colors were brightly lit green, yellow and orange.
“Remember, just follow the green dot.”
Rachel nodded and Aaron started the sequence.
He took her through a series of easy questions, then as they kept going they got harder.
“Were there any other Replicants at Tyrell corporation when Deckard first came to see you?”
“No…wait, yes, yes there was. A female, smaller than me, blonde hair and large blue eyes.”
“Was she there long?”
Rachel frowned but continued to follow the dot with her eyes.
“No, a man came and she went with him.”
“Do you remember her name?”
“Yes, Jenny. Tyrell called her Jenny.”
“Rachel, was there anything special about Jenny? Did Tyrell mention anything unusual or different about her?”
Rachel took a few moments to follow the dots, she frowned as she tried to think back to those days at Tyrell.
“He said she, like the others, was special. He, he said that we were going to save humanity. I…I don’t remember more.”
Aaron turned off the machine and set it aside.
“It’s okay, you gave me enough to start. Thank you.”
“You’re welcome, I wish I could have done more.”
Aaron’s intense gaze softened as he reached across to take her hand.
“You gave me something to go on. It’s a start.”
Aaron packed up his kit and went back to the hotel. He wasn’t surprised when Spencer came later that night. When they were laying together entwined in each other’s arms Aaron reaffirmed his vow to protect Spencer.
He was there a week, making plans, trying to get as much as he could from Rachel. He updated Morgan and Morrow sporadically, keeping them in a loop, just not the full truth. He knew he was walking a tightrope, but he was still formulating a plan to keep everyone safe.
It was almost a week to the day that he came to the Deckard’s ranch when he knew he had to leave. Spencer expressed his wish to go with him. They had argued, but in the end, Spencer got his wish. Aaron and he were finalizing plans during breakfast when there was a knock at the door. Deckard silently told them all to stay where they were and he got up to see whoever it was.
“Morning Mr. Reid, or should I say Deckard.”
Aaron shot out of his seat and ran to the door, there was no way he didn’t recognize that voice.
“Morgan, what are you doing here?”
“I was sent to see what the hell was going on.” Morgan glared at Aaron who had a hand on his blaster that was currently tucked into a back holster. “You better let me in, we need to talk.”
“Morgan, what are you doing here?” Aaron’s voice was cold and hard. He felt both Spencer and Deckard looking at him.
“There is worry about you. It’s been two months since you’ve left Los Angeles.”
“I’ve had runs that lasted longer and no one questioned me.” Aaron glared as he crossed his arms. Teo slunk up to them and crouched in front of the privacy screen, growling at Morgan. Aaron’s instincts were on high alert.
“But you’ve been here, for what, a few days and you haven’t brought the Replicant in. Or you, Mr. Deckard.”
“Why is everyone hell bent on bringing us in? We have done nothing wrong.”
“Orders are clear.”
“And why you? You aren’t a Runner and technically, you aren’t even my boss. I don’t answer to you Morgan, you know that. I answer only to the Committee.”
“And the Committee asked me to check out what was going on. Your trackers were disabled and they don’t have a download of your location. Let me in Hotch.” Aaron felt his feral side starting to rise as he stared Morgan down. He took a step back and ordered Teo to step back as well. Aaron nodded imperceptibly to Deckard and as the privacy screen lowered, both Aaron and Deckard trained their guns on Morgan.
“Whoa, I’m just here to talk.”
“Then why can I sense at least five others out there. You aren’t here just to talk.”
“Okay, okay, you’re right. But there is no need to let this escalate. Hotch, you’re a smart man, don’t let this go any further.”
“You have no idea what is going on Morgan. You need to leave.”
“I can’t do that.” Morgan had his hands held high, but Aaron was watching him. “The Committee has questions that they want answered, from Deckard and his Replicant.”
“Her name is Rachel,” Deckard growled as he held his gun high, pointed right at Morgan’s head.
“Okay, Rachel. I’m sorry, no insult meant.”
Aaron snorted and Teo growled even louder as he too glared at Morgan.
The tension was almost unbearable, but Aaron knew one wrong move and everything would go to hell.
“Please, Mr. Morgan, whatever they want, is it really worth it? It is worth the threat of violence? We’ve lived peacefully, making a life here, what could they possibly want from me?” Rachel pleaded as she stood near her husband.
“I heard the rumors too, Hotch. I read through Ryan’s reports that you found and his suspicions. Don’t you think the Committee found out also? This is a dangerous game you’re playing, and for what?”
“For what’s right, Morgan.”
“It’s dangerous, Hotch.”
“And you are naive. What Rachel did, the gift Tyrell gave her? It could save us, Morgan. We are dying as a species, that is the reality of it. Maybe this isn’t a bad thing.”
“Not a bad thing? Robots having children? These machines creating some hybrid freak? You think that is the way to save us?”
Aaron’s eyes changed, and his breath shallowed.
“You think anything different from you is a freak. You prejudiced bastard. I’d tread very, very carefully here.”
Spencer stepped forward and stood next to Aaron glaring harshly at Morgan.
“Who the fucking hell are you to come into my house and spew your self-righteous, sanctimonious bull shit. I am not a freak, I am a human, I’m a person and I want you to leave here, now.”
Morgan stood there mouth agape as he looked at Spencer.
“What?” Spencer raised a brow and smirked. “Hm, so you’re attracted to this freak, what does that say about you Morgan?”
“Stay the fuck away from me.” Morgan took a step forward and Aaron clicked off the safety.
“I will not hesitate to shoot you.”
“And if you do, the other’s will rush in here and take you and they won’t make the distinction between who is who. Now put the gorram weapons down and come peacefully.”
“Hotch, you only have one more warning.”
“And you are being asked to leave.”
“I can’t do that.” Morgan ground out through clenched teeth.
“Then we have a problem.” Aaron saw out of the corner of his eye Father and Son having a full conversation with just a few looks. They had already planned for this eventuality. Aaron, though, was the wildcard in their scenario, whatever it was.
The tension was thick as no one moved an inch. Aaron knew he could keep this up, he was sinking further and further into his animal side, Morgan was becoming his prey. It wasn’t until they heard a noise outside that anything happened, and it came from Teo. The cat growled and jumped at Morgan, scratching along his chest, and biting. Because he was stronger than a normal cat they toppled down and Teo kept up his attack.
Aaron heard the noise outside and the rumbled growl that formed had Deckard and Rachel stepping back. Aaron took a leap out of the open doorway and attacked the first person he saw. Slashing and punching he had gotten the drop on the first intruder who went down with one hard blow to the head. Shots fired out, Teo came streaking out of the house and attacked the first person he saw. Man and cat worked as one, both feral, both deadly.
Shots rang out behind them, but Aaron ignored them. Another person went down, the blaster burns evidence of what happened. The attack was over almost as quick as it started and Aaron was kneeling on one knee trying to get a hold of himself. He was looking down on the ground when he heard running. He looked up to see Spencer dropping in front of him. Hands were laid on his cheeks. He tried to pull away, but they wouldn’t let him.
“Spencer, let me go,” Aaron pleaded without looking at him.
“No. Because if I let you go now, you’ll pull away from me.”
“Look what I did!” Aaron shouted as he looked at Spencer. Blood was all over him, skin and blood under his nails, his eyes huge. He was shaking from the feral rage.
“You did it to protect us. There isn’t anything wrong with that. Please, let me help.” Aaron stood on shaky legs and looked at the carnage all around him. It wasn’t the first time he had killed or even the first time he had killed in this manner, but it had never mattered before. This time it did. Spencer was right there in front of him, keeping a hand on him and not letting him go. The younger man wrapped his arms around Aaron, not caring about the blood. Aaron wiped his hands on his pants and tentatively wrapped his arms around Spencer. He buried his head against Spencer’s neck and tried to quell the shaking in his body.
“What the fuck?” Aaron looked up to see Morgan running out the door. “What the hell did you do?”
“You brought this to their home, not me.”
“Hotch, you killed these men!”
“Mercenaries, I know what they were Morgan, did you? Did you stop to think what was going to happen? They didn’t come here to take us in. They came here to kill us, and if you believe otherwise you’re more fucking naive than I thought.”
“And you’re a gorram animal. I was right about you all along. I should have demanded someone else for the LA Blade Runner.”
Aaron glared hard as he held onto Spencer who was glaring himself.
“I see it now. Why you were taking your time. You’re fucking this…this thing, aren’t you?” Morgan raised his blaster which pissed Aaron off even more. He wanted to gloat at the torn shirt, multiple scratches that were bleeding profusely, as well as a myriad of bite marks on his arm and shoulder. Teo was crouched like he was ready to attack.
“Down Teo. Morgan, Spencer is a person, he has the right to live, just like I do.”
“You took an oath man.”
Aaron huffed out an unamused laugh as he wrapped an arm tightly around Spencer.
“You don’t know anything Morgan. Your prejudice has blinded you, I don’t even want to know what made you hate Enhanced like myself, I really don’t care, what I care about is protecting this family. And I will.”
Morgan took a few steps forward with his raised gun,” Why shouldn’t I shoot you right now?”
“Because you’d also be committing murder. Have you killed anyone outside of the line of duty? I’m unarmed and I can assure you, Derek Morgan, if you kill me, the Committee won’t be happy. My family’s name, it brings them a lot of prestige, you harm me, they’ll come after you and your family. I guarantee it. Plus, I’m a First Child, I die at your hands, you don’t even know the world of hurt you would find yourself in. I would suggest you let me go, if not this will not end well.”
Morgan didn’t move. The tension was still high. Deckard and Rachel had moved outside, but Aaron was completely focused on Spencer and Morgan.
“I don’t have to kill you to hurt you.” Morgan swung his gun and pointed it at Spencer. “You come with me, and I promise I won’t hurt your lover.”
“You wouldn’t dare.”
Aaron heard the safety click off as Morgan lifted the gun higher.
“I would. He’s an abomination.” Morgan looked Spencer up and down as he kept the gun steady on him. Teo had slunk around and was agitated. He sat in front of Spencer growling.
What happened next Aaron wasn’t even sure, He saw Deckard coming from behind Morgan and start to attack him, Morgan swung the gun around and Rachel ran forward to stop Deckard. A shot of the blaster and Rachel crumpled to the ground. Spencer started to run forward, but Aaron grabbed him around the waist.
“RUN!” Deckard yelled as he ran to Rachel. Aaron dragged Spencer with him, who was yelling to be let go, but Aaron was stronger, even dragging a struggling young man along. He wrestled him onto the bike, called for Teo, who ran and jumped up, and crawled onto his neck. He turned on the bike and rushed out of there.
“We have to go back, we have to go back now,” Spencer yelled as he struggled against Aaron, who had him in a tight grip around his waist. With his free hand, he put the bike on autopilot.
“We can’t go back, Spencer. There isn’t anything we can do.”
“We can’t leave them there, I can’t leave her there, Aaron, please,” Spencer pleaded.
“I’m sorry Spencer. I’m so sorry I brought this to your door. Fuck.”
Spencer awkwardly shifted on the seat in front of Aaron till he was face to face, he buried his head against Aaron’s chest and wrapped his arms around him.
“I don’t blame you. Mom and Dad talked about what could happen, they were realists Aaron. I just…” Spencer went silent and held onto Aaron even tighter. After a moment he felt wetness on his shirt and slipped his fingers in Spencer’s hair. He sighed as he tried to think about what to do next.
“Spencer is there a place we can go. At least for the night?”
Spencer didn’t say anything for a moment then nodded his head. “Yeah, my friend Ethan, we can go there. His address is programmed.”
Aaron didn’t let go as he used his free hand to find Ethan’s address and programmed the bike to go there. He kept one arm around Spencer, and the other on the bike handle to keep some control. They were silent as they made their way there.
When the bike stopped at the apartment house Aaron took a look around the area. He noticed there were some woods to the back of the building. He let Spencer off as he silently maneuvered the bike there and found a good place to hide it. He ripped out the tracker and the GPS system. Getting off he kept to the shadows and ran back to the building to Spencer. They quietly got inside and ran up the stairs and Spencer knocked on his friend’s door.
“Ethan, please we need a place, just for tonight. And I need you to take me to Carlyle’s. We need some clothes and a few things.”
“Why? Spencer, what’s going on?”
“Please, Ethan, not yet.”
Ethan looked at both of them. He eyed Aaron up and down but didn’t say a thing about the blood on his clothes.
“Okay, but you cannot go out like that. I think I have something that would fit you. And, your cat isn’t going to be a problem, is he?”
“No, he’s an android.”
“Right. Okay, give me a sec.” Ethan left for a few minutes.
“Are you sure this is safe Spencer?” Aaron asked, adrenaline still pumped in his veins as his sense of danger was still on high alert.
“It will be for tonight. I trust Ethan, he wouldn’t do anything to hurt me.”
“Alright.” Aaron reached out and pulled Spencer to him and held him close. He looked up when he saw Ethan coming back out of the room and the pinched look on his face didn’t go unnoticed.
“Here, you can use my bathroom to clean up.” Aaron let Spencer go and moved towards Ethan.
“If you’ve hurt him..”
“Ethan, please not right now.” Spencer went to the small couch and sat down. Aaron picked up Teo off his shoulders and told him to go to Spencer. He then went to the bathroom to do a quick clean-up and changed into the clothes Ethan was letting him borrow. After splashing water on his face, Aaron left the bathroom taking his clothes with him.
“You can put them in the sonic cleaner.” The snappish tone told Aaron just what Ethan thought of him even though they had spoken only a few words to each other. He just raised a brow and walked to the small kitchen and found the clothes cleaner under the sink. Aaron threw his dirty clothes in there and set it.
“Look, I don’t know what’s between you, but I’m not going to hurt Spencer. We’re just here for the night, then we need to leave.”
“Alright. You said you need to go to the store.”
“Yeah, but take us to Carlyle’s.”
“Come on.” Ethan didn’t seem happy about it, but he led the two men to his vehicle and took off a moment later. It was about a half hour later when they arrived at the store. Aaron could immediately see why Spencer wanted to come here. There was no visible surveillance and it looked like they would have what they needed.
“Guy who owns it doesn’t like the Government. He doesn’t keep cams, and he stocks things he thinks people will need ‘just in case’.”
Aaron almost chuckled at that as they walked inside the store. Spencer made small talk with the clerk while Aaron grabbed a couple of packs. One he stuffed clothes that he knew would fit him and some packaged rations. He grabbed a couple of collapsible bottles, a first aid kit and other things he thought they would need. Spencer came to join him and Aaron handed him a pack and told him what to grab. When they got to the cashier Aaron pulled the credits out and handed them to the clerk.
Before they got outside, Aaron pulled the jacket out and pulled the hood around him. He had spotted a cash machine not too far away. He told Spencer and Ethan he’d be right back as he ran to the machine and used his personal card to get as many credits as he could. It was the trust fund that wasn’t linked to any of his business cards. That was separate. He knew they would freeze his funds to his business account, but they had no access or control over the personal one because it was buried under other trusts and accounts. Taking the hard credits, he ran to Ethan’s hover car and they were on their way back to Ethan’s apartment.
When they got upstairs and settled in Ethan demanded answers. Slowly and carefully Aaron and Spencer told him what happened.
“Oh Spence, I’m so sorry. And how can you say it isn’t his fault? A Blade Runner? What was a Blade Runner even doing at your place?”
“You never told him?” Aaron looked between Spencer and Ethan when he asked it.
“No. It never came up.
“What? What’s going on Spencer?”
“Ethan, please understand why I didn’t tell you. I was protecting her, or trying to protect her.” Spencer stood and started to pace, wringing his hands he took a deep breath then stopped and looked at his oldest and best friend. “My mother is a Replicant.”
Ethan abruptly stood and stalked over to Spencer, “What?”
“Mom, she, she is a Replicant?”
“I don’t understand. She’s your mother, how is that possible?” Ethan was glaring at Spencer.
“Dr. Tyrell was experimenting with a few select Nexus 5’s and even fewer number of the 6’s. Basically, he engineered them so they could give birth.” Aaron watched the man as understanding lit his face.
Ethan stood and paced, not saying a thing for several long moments. Then he turned to Spencer, an ugly expression on his face.
“Staying the night is fine. Then leave in the morning.” Ethan stomped over to the wall and pulled down the mattress that fit right into the couch, creating a bed.
“Ethan, I’m sorry, I didn’t tell anyone, okay?”
“You didn’t trust me and what the hell are you?”
“I’m still me Ethan,” Spencer pleaded with his friend as he stood and went to him.
“Don’t touch me, get the fuck away from me. I’ll let you stay the night, but you leave in the morning. I want you gone.” Ethan stepped away from Spencer, glaring at him. “You lied to me, and now you tell me you’re some, some hybrid freak? God, I can’t believe I fell in love with you.”
Spencer was going to say more, but Ethan turned and walked away. Collapsing on the bed, Spencer started to cry. He cried for his parents, for losing his home and his best friend. When arms came around him and Teo jumped up to curl at his stomach Spencer cried even harder. Aaron just held on tighter, trying to give him some comfort. It was a very long night as the two men held each other close. Aaron didn’t know what the next day was going to bring, but what he did know was that he needed to get to Jason and Dave. He needed their help, then he was going to confront the Committee. He knew it was dangerous, but at this point, he had no other choice.