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Story Notes:
Disclaimer: You won’t get a penny ‘cause it ain’t mine.

A/N: Based on plot bunny by LaughtersMelody on NWP, Battlefield Of The Mind: One of the Transgenics from Psy-Ops turns out to be working for White, and attacks Alec, trapping him in his mind...more specifically, the memories of his time in psy-ops after the Berrisford Agenda. Another Psy-Ops Transgenic can help...but the only way to do that is to send someone else into his mind, and Max is the one to go. Can she save him from his own memories, or will she be trapped, too?

"Mission accomplished, Sir."
"Excellent. Keep me posted. Any change in his condition and I want to know, pronto."
"Certainly, Sir. But you don't have to worry; 494 is most definitely trapped."
"It should be satisfying to observe his collapse. We're done here."
"I don't get it, Max. He's not responding at all."
"What are you talking about?"
"Wigga went to visit hot-boy today. Claims the boy near lost it."
"Wait, what?"
"Alec and I were supposed to go to this new club down on Foster. I showed up, the door's open and he's sitting in a chair by the window, totally vacant stare. He was mumbling, Max."
"What's so strange about that? People mumble all the time."
"Yeah, well, most people don't keep saying, 'I killed her.'"
"I am a valuable military asset, representing billions of dollars in R&D."
"Any word yet?"
"He'll pull through, right? I mean, he's Alec."
"I wish I knew, Sugar."
"He's been doing that all afternoon. Random outbursts ranging from 'No!' to the recitation of his designation."
"Is he repeating the same things?"
"No, but they're consistent with..."
"With what? Just give it to me straight."
"With Psy-Ops patients, ones who've undergone extensive and repeated invasive procedures."
"Do we know how this happened?"
"Well, I've conducted every test I could think of - twice, Max. He's in there somewhere but he's unresponsive."
"He's locked in his own mind?"
"Yeah. And I think it was deliberate."
"He did this to himself?”
“I don’t’ think so.”
“So you're saying he didn't just wake up this morning and snap. I know he's been worried about..."
"About what?"
"Insanity. His twin - 493 - went crazy. Alec's always been worried it might be hereditary."
"He's not crazy, Max, or at least it's not a genetic trait."
"I will never disobey orders again!"
"There's a trick to this. Kat says all the signs are there and that the process can be reversed."
"How would that work?"
"If someone were to be...inserted in to his subconscious, they might succeed in bringing him out again."
"Are you...?"
"Logan, it's the only way."
"No. No, Max. There's got to e someone else."
"I can do this, Logan. I owe it to him."
"Why you, Max? The two of you aren't even friends. What if he doesn't respond to you?"
"We fought yesterday. What if something I said is keeping him in there or making it harder for him to get back out? I have to try."
"What if you somehow end up trapped in there with him?"
"It's a risk I'm willing to take. My decision is final; I'm going in."
"I am disposable."
"When will we know if she makes contact?"
"Shhh. Shut up and watch."
“This is a delicate procedure. If all of you can’t shut up and sit still, you’re out of here.”
"Alec, it's Max."
"Who are you? Why are you here?"
"It's me, Max. I'm here to help bring you back."
"Go away. This is her place; get out."
"Alec, look at me. Someone...someone tricked you into coming here. You-,"
"Alec, please let me talk to you."
"Rachel, I'm sorry."
"Alec, it's me, Max."
"It was my job. I never expected to fall in love."
"Oh, Alec..."
"Rachel? Rachel where are you? No, don't go! Rachel!"
"His brain waves are spiking and his heart rate is off the charts. There's definitely something going on in there."
"What about Max?"
"It's hard to tell. She's been pretty calm since she went in, which is a good sign. But Alec's increased brain activity may indicate agitation or fear or something that could pose a threat to Max."
"I don't like it."
"Logan, let's see how it goes. We're monitoring them both very closely."
"I still don't like it."
"Noted. Now shut up and let me do my job."
"Alec? Alec, it's me. It's Max."
"My designation is X5-452."
"Excuse me?"
"That's what Manticore wanted you to believe, but I'm not a traitor.”
“Alec, we know each other, we're...friends."
"I’ve never met you before. I don't befriend traitors. I'm loyal to Manticore and I should bring you in."
"Manticore's gone, Alec. It's all over."
"Where's my gun? Why am I strapped to a...what are you doing? No! Not that, anything but that. I'll be good, I promise, I'll do anything you want!"
"X5-494, Sir!"
"Yes, sir. According to the file, her name is Rachel. She's seventeen. Only child. Mother died when she was ten. She's a good student--"
"I like you."
"Well, I can't help it. You've got me all turned around."
"Alec, what are you...?"
"We don't have a lot of time. I'll cover for you. I'll tell 'em that you left in the middle of the night. But you have got to go now!"
"Why are Max's vitals off the page?"
"These waves indicate a shared stream. They must be experiencing the same thing simultaneously. This could be just what we need to bring him back."
"Let go of me, Alec! You're talking crazy."
"Come with me."
"Come with you where?"
"Somewhere they won't find us. I won't let anything happen to you."
"Alec, this isn't real. You're stuck in your head. I came here to help you."
"You were my job.
"Alec, come on, please, don’t do this again. Let's just go home."
"Rach--no! You--"
"I'll come with you."
"You will? Can you forgive me?"
"Oh, Alec, I forgive you."
"What just happened?"
"Everything stopped. There's no movement from either of them."
"Pull her out!"
"Logan, let go of those right now! No, put them down. Do you want to kill them both? Didn’t think so.”
“We have to do something!”
“Listen, if we pull her out at this stage we could lose them both! She must be tied in with him somehow, receded into a deeper memory chamber. All we can do now is hope and pray."
"What is this place?"
"My sanctuary. I come here when I need to be alone, get away from everything."
"It's so peaceful."
"Do you come here a lot?"
"Whenever they put me in the white room. Because I know it will hurt and they can't hurt me here."
"Everything seems so real. It's beautiful."
"Yes, you are."
"Their heart rates have both picked up significantly but their other vitals show no signs of stress, so it must be a good place they're in right now."
"How reassuring."
"Don't be smart with me, Logan. I don't have to let you stay."
“I think Kat wants to slap him.”
“Shut up, fool! He’s worried.”
“So am I.”
“I know, Sugar, me too.”
"You're not Rachel."
"Hh. Yeah, it's me."
"How did...?"
"You don't remember anything? How you got here?"
“Son of a gun."
"Max!" “Hey, Boo!” “Yeah, Max.”
"Not now, guys. I'm sorry, just...give us a few minutes, okay?"
"Thank God you're okay."
"Hmm, yeah."
“We’ll wait outside, Boo. You take care of yo’ boy and come see us when you all done, aiight?”
"Max, I..."
"No big. S'okay."
"Yeah, well, thanks."
"Sir, I'm afraid there's a complication."
"What is it, Otto?"
"The psychic kid, Sir. He's been compromised."
"How did that happen?"
"Apparently 494 is awake, Sir."
"What? How?"
"It appears that 452 pulled him out."
"I'll replace that desk for you right away, Sir."
"His plan was to introduce a neurotoxin into his system and slowly asphyxiate him."
"Good heavens."
"Hey Logan, what are they gonna do to him?"
"Executed. Fifteen minutes ago."
“I always pictured myself a pacifist, ya know? But…”
“Yeah, Original Cindy’s right there wit you.”
""Oh, sorry."
"No, it was my fault. I wasn't watching where I was going."
"No worries."
"You uh, wanna go get something to eat?"
"...Sure. Yeah, that sounds great."
"Did they just...?"
"I thought she couldn't stand him."
"People tend to bond during a crisis, Logan."
“Yeah, right. He’s been sniffin’ after shorty for a while now.”
“Shut UP, fool!”
"You've got tomato sauce on your chin. Just there."
"No, a little higher."
"Where, here?"
"You missed it again. Let me get it."
"I'm sorry. I couldn't help myself."
"I didn't exactly try to stop you."
“Did you mean what you said?”
“Maybe. Did you mean what you did?”
"So what does this mean?"
"Do you want it to mean something?"
"I'll take that as a yes, then!"
Chapter End Notes:
Following wide and varied responses (here on FFnet and other boards and journals) I wanted to respond to the reviews and comments all in one message. Here goes.

Someone asked me if my intent with this story was to make the reader think. laughs Well, I don't know about thinking, but it wasn't meant to be skimmed through, that's for certain. Writing with only dialogue makes it more difficult to show expressions and settings and the like, so one does have to try and read into the words being spoken to get a better idea of the thoughts and actions behind and around the words.

I suppose I feel that I know my characters well enough to recognize them simply from "hearing" (reading)

them speak. It does sadden me to see from the reviews that people either don't agree with me on that, or that they don't really know the characters themselves. I won't be so egotistical as to say the latter is the truth, but I still lean more towards the former :D

I have found that Dark Angel enthusiasts these tend to be a bit more complacent in general viewing or the show and reading of the fiction, and more specific with their interests - they focus on certain people, things,

phrases, relationships, etc, rather than the group as a whole or will disregard certain elements and aspects or relegate them to the background without taking everything into account at once.

I do agree that the dialogue can be confusing at times, but I think that I managed to capture the attitudes of each person speaking so that they can be recognized without having their names mentioned.

For instance, we know that Original Cindy uses the word 'Sugar' and calls Sketchy 'Wigga' and 'Fool'. They should be easy to spot regarding who is saying what. In the cases of Logan, I think that the context makes it easy to spot when he's speaking - or he has been addressed or replied to by others using his name.

Kat is the original female character who is helping them figure out the Psy-Ops thing, so she's not mentioned by name. I didn't feel it was important at all for her to be singled out. And when it's relating to her part in the proceedings, she even comments on 'doing her job', which should be a give-away.

Max and Alec are pretty obvious and while some of the things being said seem disconnected and out of place, that is the whole point of being in his head - his memories are offering up a variety of scenes, images, snippets of conversation one after another and they don't have to make sense or be in order.

I wrote this fic as a challenge for myself; to see if I could convey - in just speech - everything and everyone needed in the story. It wasn't easy, believe me! But I think the scenes (and breaks between them) are clear enough to differentiate between everyone involved and their roles in this story and that if you read slower and pay attention to the lines being spoken and the breaks between scenes, that it may actually make a lot more sense that originally believed.

Anyway, I will not be editing the story to conform to anyone's ideas of good or bad :) In fact, it's refreshing to read everyone's thoughts and opinions and even go back and try to consider things from the reviewers'

points of view. I can only say that this was an interesting lesson for me and I'm glad that I gave it a shot.

Thank you all for your interest and your comments, they are most appreciated.

Again, thank you for taking the time to read and review this story! Wishing you all the best,