tagSci-Fi & FantasyLife as a New Hire Ch. 44 - Extra

Life as a New Hire Ch. 44 - Extra

byFinalStand©

*Editing magic performed by KJ24 and Shyqash, plus a contribution by a loyal reader. I really do appreciate all you guys and girls. You pick me up when I am down, back me up when I struggle and, best of all, inspire me with your creative ideas which I gladly interject into this tale.*

*THIS SUBMISSION DOES NOT INCLUDE EVENTS IN THE MAIN STORYLINE. IT CONTAINS INFORMATION IMPORTANT TO THE LARGER TALE*

*Felix, that Bitch -- the Weave and a Reader's idea*

{ A: Felix Melena -- The Enigma that Isn't}

I've been asked about Felix more than a few times. I have found Felix to be a fun character to write and he seems quite clear to me. Most of the people who have corresponded with me about him seem to think he was an utter asshole and a villain. That is not quite the truth -- as Cáel has pointed out to others, Felix is a Winner with a capital 'W'. Is this such a bad thing?

Admittedly, he was an asshole for walking around telling the world how awesome he is. And he would be a true villain if it he couldn't back it up. But it was true. Felix really was awesome.

But of more importance in Cael's world, Felix wasn't a cheater. He played by the rules. He didn't consider himself to be a 'bad guy'. Left unchallenged, he was quite a nice guy. He was not a bully. If you didn't challenge him, he was not going to beat you up. Why? Well what was the point? He knew he was better than you. And the only person Felix was truly out to impress was himself. So he didn't care what you thought of yourself.

From Felix's point of view, in the shower scene with Elsa, Cáel had thrown down the gauntlet by 'having' Elsa choose Cáel over himself. Felix didn't blame Elsa. That was not his style. (He was rather chauvinistic.)

What is often ignored is that after Cáel beat Felix, Felix lived with the verdict. Brian and Trent wouldn't have. Felix had his own Code of Honor and, for those worthy of being considered a true competitor, he respected them and showed that respect. Sure, that meant he still saw most people as pawns in the competition, since he started with that assumption (-- after all, he was an asshole.)

But it also meant he wouldn't have done what he did to Brooke (and Gene) if he hadn't been out to show Cáel that he was the superior male. Again, he's an asshole. Still, given that quirk, Felix was reliable, honorable and honest (for the most part). The best way I can explain the package is look at some contrasts; let's imagine I put Felix in Chapter 23 in place of Cáel.

#1, he would have defended Casper. Why? Felix feels that no woman should have that happen to her. Felix would NEVER rape a woman. Not only did he feel he would never have to, he knows it was 'wrong'. Right and wrong were important to him. They are why we have rules and the rules are for EVERYONE, himself included.

#2, at the pool, sexing up Brooke, he would have been polite to Hana. He had Brooke, Hana wasn't confronting him and he understood the concepts of hospitality. Unless he and you were in conflict, you were perfectly safe in his abode, or under his protection. Why? It was both wrong to attack your dependent, and suggested you questioned about his supremacy. The latter wouldn't do.

#3, at the breakfast table things would have worked out differently. It could have followed the same script until the guard 'lost' his gun. Felix would have pistol-whipped the guard, followed by politely, but with menace, informing Keyes' fiancée she needed to scream very loudly.

Why? He wanted Keyes and the second guard to come back downstairs. That would allow him to shoot both men -- in a non-vital, temporarily disabling manner. He was an excellent shot. When Jormo intervened, Felix would floor him too. Why? Now he could take his time as he beat Brennan into a coma.

He wouldn't kill Brennan because Felix was rather bright. He was going to put Brennan into a coma because, at the trial, he would explain, on the witness stand, exactly what happened to Casper. Being Felix the Winner, he would stoke the moral outrage of the jury and be acquitted. Murdering Brennan would nix much of the sympathy he needed.

Besides, for the rest of his life -- post coma -- Brennan would feel the physical pain of his poor life choice. He had committed a wrong in front of Felix Melena. By challenging the concepts of Right and Wrong, he had confronted Felix and had lost in a bad way. Brennan would also understand that if he brought this matter up again, Felix would figure out a way to kill him without getting caught.

Felix would defend a woman's honor and stop an obvious bully -- because that person was doing something wrong. As long as a person respected his dominance, Felix was a good guy. He only became ruthless when disrespected. Was he cruel to Brooke? Absolutely. In this situation, she was a weapon to be used against Cáel.

Cosmically speaking, Cáel was a far better human being. But that didn't make Felix a villain. It simply left him a bastard and asshole. As Cáel told Oneida, you couldn't separate all of Felix's good qualities from the bad. Ignoring Felix's virtues would be wrong.

Felix would never abandon a friend in a bar fight, no matter what the odds. Oh, he'd chastise the friend who started the beat down, but only after the fact. It was more than pride and ego. It was Felix. As a companion, he was utterly reliable, brave and loyal.

Felix NEVER cheated. If he was going to defeat you, he was going to stay within the 'rules' to do so. So, he felt justified to use a female companion of an enemy against him. By challenging Felix, Cáel had put Brooke into play -- at least in Felix's perspective on how the game is played.

Felix would never go behind Cáel's back and do something secretive and under-handed (in his mind). Stealing Brooke wasn't the issue. Hurting Brooke wasn't his intention. Showing Cáel who was the better lover -- that he had seduced her away -- was. (FYI, he lost to Cáel in that category. Brooke definitely thought Cáel was better both in the sack and as a worthwhile human being.)

On the sparring mat, Felix would have never blind-sided Cáel. He had to beat Cáel fair and square. Sure, he was positive he would win -- he always was and he always did. When he was wrong, like a good Amazon, he learned from his mistakes.

**

We didn't get to know Khalid. He was gone too soon. We did get to know Trent and Brian a whole lot better. I think it is pretty clear both guys (I shouldn't call them men) would gladly cheat to win. They would gladly throw a 'friend' under the bus if they were in trouble. They just wouldn't do it the exact same way.

So, for 'use Brooke to strike back at Cáel'? Brian didn't care about anyone, but himself. He won't bother.

Trent would punish Brooke for cheating on him (if it happened) because Brooke had 'disappointed' him. He would also punish Cáel with the 'old' underwear exhibit. The difference was, he wouldn't have fought Cáel over Brooke. Brooke had already been discarded. Trent wouldn't agree to a match with Cáel because there was no advantage for him to do so. He wouldn't understand that all of the Amazons would then see him as a coward.

In a disadvantageous bar fight, both Brian and Trent would rapidly deny their companion was even an acquaintance. It wasn't that they couldn't help out. Both were martially proficient. Their problem was what mattered to them was them ... their own needs and their futures, not those of someone else, no matter how familiar.

Get beaten up for someone else's 'mistake'? What was in it for them? Mind you, both would give any of their 'friends' ten levels of Hell if they were the ones being left in the lurch. Unlike Felix and Cáel, who valued companionship, Brian and Trent only valued friendship for what was in it for them.

During the Brennan scenario, both would have realized what Brennan and company did was wrong. Unlike Brennan, they were actually successful at the Game of Life, having graduated with honors from two prestigious schools, with jobs and futures which didn't involve a drug overdose ... but ...

#1, would they defend Casper, or any woman for that matter? It depended on the social context, aka what was in it for them. They would not publically act like cads because they had future plans that would be damaged if they looked like amoral butt-monkeys.

In the given situation with Brennan? Getting involved was counter-productive. Who as Casper to them? Who would witness their callous disregard for another human being? No one who would ever talk about it, so they would do nothing.

Brian would remain aloof. Destroying someone for a midnight diversion wasn't his thing. He would go to bed alone and sleep like a baby. Casper's degradation wasn't his problem.

If 'drunk enough' and minus Brooke, Trent might join in as a social activity ... until Casper stopped being 'fun'. Staying up too late put bags under his eyes, making him look less handsome and vital.

#2 -- Hana: Brian would have disregarded Hana. First, he had his dick in Brooke. After he discarded Brooke? Well, he could see Hana wasn't someone who would take his rude treatment very well and could possibly do something about it. Besides, she was 'old'.

Trent? They were in the same social class, his girlfriend was present and he would only cheat on Brooke if he was sure he could get away with it. He'd be nice to Hana because he might need her later -- she was rich and he was toying with the idea of a career in politics.

#3, the next morning? Brian would have been thinking of a way to make a quick exit. He had to save himself from any scandal. Casper? Brian would quickly forget her name. He would also work very hard to forget that he had even been there.

If an investigation happened, he would hide behind a high-priced lawyer. If forced to testify, he would make damn sure he had total immunity first. He didn't know Brennan and the asshole was not likely to be useful to Brian later -- so under the bus he went. The only reason Brian was being 'honest' was to avoid a perjury charge. No criminal record for him.

Trent would have been somewhat conciliatory to Brennan -- gently scolding him perhaps -- because he might need a rich friend like Brennan later. Casper? He didn't know Casper and she was unlikely to ever be useful to him. Hell, if an actual criminal investigation came up, he would try to evade questioning.

If his back was put to the wall, he would defend Brennan's version of events. Brennan and he were in the same fraternity and it wouldn't do for Brennan to tell his 'brothers' that he was a 'traitor'. To Trent (but not the fraternity), Brennan being a rapist wasn't all that important.

If I put more than one of them at the breakfast table that morning?

Cáel would have been terribly pissed with Brian and Trent if either of them had been there with him -- coldly furious. Felix would have kicked both their asses after Casper was safely away. Cáel was forgiving. Felix was a ruthless asshole and those two spineless wimps allowed a weaker person to do WRONG -- and did nothing to correct it when it was clearly within their power to do so.

They had broken the Covenant he lived by and that wasn't something he could allow to pass. No, pain was in the offing and no amount of verbal evasion would save those two. Why would he do this? Felix was RIGHT, they were WRONG and he was a WINNER, damn it!

Had it been Cáel and Felix together? Mr. and the almost-Mrs. Keyes wouldn't have been the first ones to die. In fact, most of them wouldn't have died. Why? Felix wasn't the type of man who allowed others to dispense justice when punishment was within his reach.

The second Felix and Cáel saw Casper, they would look at one another. No words would be exchanged. They knew in their hearts what should be done and mentally knew they were physically equal to the upcoming challenge. First, they would have double-teamed Keyes -- hospitalized.

This wasn't cheating because Felix wasn't out to prove he was better than Keyes, or anyone else in the room. Someone(s) had done wrong and, with Cáel's assistance, he was capable of putting a stop to it right then. Hell, if they had been there, Felix would have expected Brian and/or Trent to help as well ... until he looked into their eyes and realized they were gutless chicken-shit.

Outmatched, he would have waited for the earliest opportunity -- the security guard -- then acted on his impulses. Later, after the rest had been dealt with, he would 'explain' to those two -- one at a time (he wasn't stupid) -- how much they had fucked up. It would be an educational and painful lesson. Not only had they willfully ignored an obvious injustice, they had disappointed Felix Melena. Were they really so moronic that they thought he would let it pass?

When he had looked into Cáel's eyes, he would have seen reflected his desire for righteous vengeance and attacked. With Keyes dealt with, he would insist they hunt down the rest of the nitwits while Brooke, Libra and Hana took care of Casper.

Hana couldn't have stopped him because he wasn't worried about upsetting her and he was Felix Melena, damn it! No girl was going to tell him what to do (off the clock), proving his chauvinistic credentials.

Jormo? Any chance for the old wolf to demand respect had gone down the drain when it was revealed what a pathetic job he'd done raising Brennan. MEN raised their sons to be MEN, not the slimy toxic sludge named Brennan. Felix wouldn't beat up Jormo. The jury might not understand that -- he was an old guy. Besides, the look of scorn on Felix's face would be its own body blow.

So, while Felix Melena can be, and often is, an incredible ruthless bastard, he is also a man of his word, fearless, and even-handed. He never expects anything from a person that he wouldn't do himself -- and, of course, succeed at! He holds everyone to his Code of Conduct, especially himself.

And that is pretty much Felix Melena. If you are going to hate him, hate him for the man he is -- both good and bad. Now you know.

{ B: More about the Weave}

You may have noted that when 'The Friendless' (aka Sērkuēn, Shammuramat, Salmu Eretu, Sakunyias) showed up in Chapter 27, she had a complete panoply of war and a full understanding of the Modern World. More than once since then, she has been in firefights and come out relatively unscathed. That is because her armor is both not of this Earth and also cunningly crafted using the most advanced techniques of the 21st century.

Saku could have come back with the most lethal bang-bangs mankind had ever created. She chose to come back with the weapons she had been buried with, just updated. The original Assyrian bow, while powerful, was not capable of the killing power it had when Saku wielded it in her various battles at Cáel's side.

Likewise, her blades would have been made with iron, not steel. Her current armor consistently defeated modern high-velocity rounds which an early Iron Age suit of armor could never have done. She knew English -- a language that did not exist when she died. She knew what trucks were, along with helicopters. In essence, she was a modern Warrior-Queen.

Ajax and his warband had a clear understanding of the geopolitical situation they arrived into as well as the finest available military hardware available. Not only did they have the best weapons and body armor, they also arrived with a complete understanding of the technology, tactics and strategy of the time.

Why? The Weave is the intersection of Time, Space, Life, Death and Legend. When spirits escaped through the Weave, they were changed by it. The core of their life -- their Legend -- was transformed to fit into the current paradigm. They were warriors of Legend when they died, so they had not only their memories and skill to pull upon, they now also possessed the abilities that made their Legend relevant to their current circumstances.

That meant Ajax, being a prince, Warlord and Supreme Warrior, when he passed back into the Sunlight Realm, all the threads of war and leadership passed through him. The Mycenaeans weren't huge people. Those who arrived immediately found themselves to be stronger and more muscular in order to fit the modern results of the lifestyle they had lived, the prime example of what a modern soldier would be.

Saku, tall in Assyria, was over six feet when she appeared in the American Southwestern. Like Ajax, she spoke several extant languages before her death, so ended up speaking several modern ones upon arrival. This allowed them to fit seamlessly into their new lives. Ajax, the consummate killer, ended up with the Condottieri, Saku arrived at a place close to the Amazons, Alal ended up close to his Illuminati and 23 years earlier, the fetus who would become Temujin, was born in Central Asia.

The Weave did not return those ancient dead to the Kingdoms of Salamis and Assyria. Those had ceased to exist in this world. They did both return with their ferocious natures, tactical brilliance and the potential to be great leaders. Ajax died as part of Alal's plans to test Cáel (which was really the clash of Alal's legend versus that of Ajax.) In the end, the scion of the greatest mastermind the world had ever seen defeated the man who could not be killed.

In the 'real' legend, Ajax killed himself because he lost the contest with the clever Odysseus (that hero's 'thing') and was shamed by both the actions of the Greek forces and his further shaming when he was rendered drunk by the Goddess Athena and slaughtered a flock of sheep.

In this reimagining, it was the Amazons, supported by the Goddesses, who drugged Ajax, rendering him so drunk that the 'sheep' he killed were his own men. When Ajax fell upon the sword that Hector (the Trojan's greatest hero) had given him, he saw that it was the Amazons who had tricked him so he vowed vengeance.

At the Battle of the Seven Skulls, once more Ajax was defeated, not by the Force of Arms, but by the cleverness of his opponent. In a stand up fight, no one alive could have withstood Ajax's Legend, not even Alal. Pamela (as a sniper) tried and failed in her attempt to save Cáel's life during the river confrontation. Cael saved himself.

It was the clever Cáel who found a way to defeat Ajax's Legend by feeding him to a Goddess via bringing Ajax into Cáel's 'Ishara-place' ~ removing Ajax from reality and thus weakening his Legend. The Goddess SzélAnya was able to kill Ajax -- a feat she could not have accomplished in the 'Sunlit Realm'. True to the fate of Ajax in the Trojan Wars, he was overcome by the cleverness of another.

Alal? Think about it. A deity ripped his soul into three parts and the Weave has never rectified that in nearly five thousand years? Really? Then what the hell is Cáel Nyilas doing running around ... you know, considering his mother's genetically engineered (by Ereshkigal) sterility?

The Weave didn't create Cáel. Sibeal O'Shea falling in love with Ferko Nyilas was all on their own. The Weave merely allowed their love-making to take hold, allowing Cáel to come into existence thus temporarily negating Ereshkigal's curse. Add to that the deep longing Alal has developed for a real family of his own -- yes, he really was happy to finally have a child of his flesh -- his grandson.

The future is never certain, so there was no guarantee that Cáel would wreak vengeance upon those harming the Weave ... but he has because Cáel knew the difference between Right and Wrong and had the will to set things right. Blame Ferko, Kimberly, Timothy, Katrina, Odette, Aya and Pamela. Add Rhada, Brooke, Libra and Hana to that mix as well.

Ajax's and Saku's return was the Weave balancing accounts, just ask the Egyptians. They know how well the Weave maintains the harmonic balance.

Ajax didn't have to pursue his revenge against the Amazons, but he did.

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