Elizabeth wiped away the tears before the doors opened up. She was the only person in the elevator after several JTF office workers offered to wait for the next one when they saw her walk up.
The day Thomas left was one of the worst days of her life. Her life spiraled out of control for many years after until fate brought them together for one last time. And that only made it worse. She would forget the pain and start anew. Her Thomas had returned to her.
As she approached, Michael noticed Jury was wrapping her long dark brown hair in a bun. She was focused on him now with a huge smile on her face displaying a brilliant set of white teeth. Even in her forties, Elizabeth had the appearance of a mundane woman half her age.
She swayed her hips back and forth, teasing every man watching; every man but her son. Scott narrowed his eyes as his mother flaunted her sexuality in such a public display. It was disgusting and extremely embarrassing. Several male mundanes bumped into the handrails and benches as they watched the beautiful Jury work her magic. Why was she behaving like that?.
“Michael, would you please lead the class in the morning run. I need to catch up with my son.” She spoke differently now, alluring and tempting. Michael looked over to Alaina who only shrugged her shoulders. As the team leader, she should be leading the run but no one was going to argue with the most powerful mentalist in the world.
“Group, attention,” Michael commanded for the first time. He had no idea what he was doing but he had watched the dynamic duo and Alaina do it enough times to mimic them.
“Please meet us at Hinkle when you return,” Jury added before they left. “Thank you, Michael.”
Alaina turned her head as Elizabeth walked away with Scott following silently behind her. She had no idea what was going on but after everything the last few days, she was not going to let her guard down with Elizabeth Jurgens snooping around.
“Forward march!” Michael barked without laughing. It really was odd that he was leading a group of highly trained Enhanced during an exercise. Him. Michael Larson. A category one Enhanced. Just a few months ago, he was going to prison. Now he’s part of an elite fighting unit. God works in mysterious ways.
But Michael was confused by Jury’s sudden disposition change, especially to him, her son’s least favorite person. Maybe she would train him like Dart did for Alaina and Mari. He had teleporter-like powers so a mentalist was the closest match. Of course, they had to deal with this murder case first and find the Enhanced responsible.
“What is it, mother?” Scott asked sarcastically as he followed her to the large training facility. “What the hell is wrong with you? You embarrassed yourself out there. You embarrassed Dad and you embarrassed me!”
Elizabeth did not turn around. She was still lost in her memories of sneaking away to the beach house in Los Angeles with Thomas Collins. They had so many passionate nights together there.
“After you,” she said to Scott as she held the door to Hinkle open. Bravo company was out in field exercises so the building was empty this morning. Why was she bringing him here? What the hell was she up to?
“Well now,” Elizabeth began, “I thought we should catch up on what has been happening since Crawfordsville. Your father and I were very worried when you went missing. I hope you realize that going solo is a good way to get yourself killed.”
Scott frowned. She wanted to lecture him on his mistakes while in the field? “Yes, I did. It was my first mission. We all make mistakes our first time.” Scott tried to keep his temper. He knew his mother would break his mental defenses if he lost his focus. “What do you want, mother?”
As Elizabeth walked into the EUT, the light sensors activated, illuminating the training area. When she reached the middle of the open square, she stopped.
“Tell me what happened at the club,” she said in her sweetest and most pleasant voice. Scott had another name for it, her interrogation voice. Jury did not need to threaten or torture someone to get the information she wanted. She was a master at manipulating emotions. Her interrogation voice was designed to keep the conversation friendly and just between friends. As the mind became frustrated or fearful of her true goals, the mental defense weakened and Jury could pick the brain apart at her leisure.
Scott raised an eyebrow. If she knew enough to ask about the club, she already knew what happened. Why was she asking?
“What?” he asked stalling.
“You heard me, Scott. Why did the equipment explode and send all those mundanes to the hospital?” Elizabeth’s voice never changed from the pleasant tone. Scott did not like what was happening. Is this why she ran off to see the Director? Was she trying to get him kicked out of the JTF?
“Your defenses are weakening, Justice. Ah, let’s see. Alaina tossed you through a wall and threatened to kill you. Not a good start to demonstrate those hours we spent in mental defense training.”
Scott stepped backed when he thought about the training. For several years his mother, his own mother, devised the most evil and horrendous thoughts to torture her son. He was barely 11 when the training started. He had to endure watching his father’s murder, his mother’s rape, and other acts of depravity to the people closest to him. She expected him to block the images and focus on the real fight, not the struggle within his mind. He learned to build a mental shield quickly by removing any traces of weak emotions, empathy and sympathy. He learned self-confidence and self-reliance were the key to surviving the harsh world of Enhanced. Love and attachment only led to pain. His mother taught him well.
“And Alaina ended the relationship with you when you tried to take over as team leader. Tsk, tsk, Justice. She can fly and has a powerful long-range power, both which you lack. You were foolish to think you could challenge the line of Orbital Strike and Valkyrie.
I am strong enough to take on anyone, mother, including you.” Scott could feel the holes in his mental defense rebuild and strengthen. He was the son of Judge, the most powerful living Enhanced. He was the son of Jury, the most dangerous living Enhanced. He was a weapon and the perfect Enhanced.
“And I don’t have to tell you shit. Your right to question me ended the minute I left your house. If you want the answers, come and take them.” Justice focused his mind, ready to move at any moment. She would try to overpower and confuse him with her telepathic powers to end it quickly. No Enhanced wanted to endure a long battle against a Tank.
“As you wish,” she said as she lashed out with a psychic whip. She would hold nothing back to teach her offspring that she would be obeyed.
Jury smiled. Her son was finally a man.