Chapter 40

Gyan fell to his knees and tears filled his eyes as his heart broke at the betrayal. After everything he'd done to prepare them and mentor them, The Brotherhood had turned against him. The emotional pain cut through him like a knife.

Only O'Shay seemed to care and understand. The Irishman stood over him, reaching out in understanding. Gyan had dedicated his life to The Brotherhood. Without them, there was nothing and it seemed only O'Shay could comprehend the profound loss that Gyan felt.

He felt O'Shay's hands clasp firmly around his throat, and Gyan welcomed the darkness, grateful that at least one of his companions understood the need to end it all. Gyan let his head drop back, exposing his throat to the welcome embrace.

His lungs began to burn as they starved for oxygen. He felt giddy…no…yes! The pain was too great. He couldn't breath. Let me die, he thought. It hurts! This is the end…no…yes! Let it end. His lungs screamed with the fire of depravation. His vision blurred. O'Shay stood over him, squeezing the life out of him, forcing him to want it.

Gyan grabbed O'Shay's wrists, struggling to pull them free from his neck as the world spun madly. He was too weak to resist; the blackness edging across his consciousness. Unable to fight back, Gyan twisted and dropped to the floor, causing O'Shay to topple over and release the strangulating grip. Gyan rolled away and staggered to his feet gasping for air.

"You can't kill me," Gyan croaked, suddenly aware of O'Shay's weakness. "Pain is the trigger. No matter what fantasy you put me in, the pain breaks me free!"

"You think your pissant psychic abilities can keep you safe?" O'Shay smirked. "Then what about this?"

O'Shay pivoted on one foot, raising the other to land a heel in Gyan's stomach. Gyan doubled over and staggered backwards with a grunt. O'Shay was on top of Gyan before he could regain his balance, knocking the tutor to the ground and landing a fist into his face.

Gyan felt a tooth loosen. He saw stars and raised his arms to protect his face. O'Shay landed another punch before Gyan could raise a knee and knock the Irishman off balance. He tried to roll away, but O'Shay stayed on top of him, wrapping an arm around Gyan's neck and twisting one of Gyan's arms behind his back.

Gyan gagged, pinned in the choke. He strained to raise himself off the floor but the Irishman's weight held him down. He could feel his mind clouding as the Mind Muse tried to draw him into another fantasy world but the fight to stay alive was holding the power of the Irishman at bay.

Unable to throw O'Shay off him, Gyan changed tact, grabbing the arm around his throat and relieving the pressure. He pulled against the arm; his superior strength slowly easing the pressure and forcing O'Shay's arm over his head.

Freed from the choke hold, Gyan managed to twist onto his back. He raised an arm to block a sudden punch from O'Shay as he looked up at his nemesis now. He struck out with his other hand, striking O'Shay in the solar plexus. O'Shay cried out and fell to one side, allowing Gyan to crawl away and stagger to his feet.

O'Shay rose too, glaring at Gyan as they faced each other, eye to eye. Gyan could feel O'Shay reaching into his mind and his vision began to blur. He fought against it, locking down his mind in a bid to stay focussed in reality.

O'Shay morphed into a champion fighter.

Then suddenly he was O'Shay again.

A King.


An unstoppable alien.


His captor.


A lover. Gyan's pulse raced at the anticipation of that perfect, taut hairy chest edging closer to his own.


"I want you."

"I want you," Gyan echoed and he stepped towards is lover.

A crash! broke the spell and Gyan stumbled back a few steps as the Superhero League burst through the doorway. With Crunch and Bounce in tow, they poured into the room as a united front, forming into a group behind Gyan. Suddenly it was one against eleven. O'Shay had no chance…unless the rescue was just another illusion!

Turning his back on O'Shay, Gyan turned to face his comrades. They seemed as solid as anyone. Shaking with anticipation, he reached out to touch Jackhammer on the arm just as the group blurred and faded out of existance…

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