Chapter 4

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They all walked behind the stage where Victor was giving his speech, crowds of photographers and press surrounded him. Ben looked up at Doom's figure on stage and scowled.

            "What's wrong this time Ben?" Nyx asked.

            Ben ignored her and turned to Reed. "Isn't that your speech?"

            "He's made a few changes." Her brother mumbled.

            "This is your dream Reed, that should be you up there."

            "Victor's better at these things."

            "Only because you don't try." Nyx told him before smirking. "Well that and the fact you go into too much detail. People like simplified things... or at least when it comes to science."

            They continued walking, Sue and Johnny surprisingly hadn't said anything yet but Nyx could tell Johnny was just waiting to make a sarcastic remark to something Ben said. After noticing Sue glaring at him out of the corner of her eye she realized Sue had probably threatened him in some way if he said anything. They walked faster after seeing Ben's fiancée Debbie at the edge of the crowd of people.

            Ben smiled at her and embraced Debbie into a hug, Reed looked at Sue but she didn't notice. Nyx did though, she also noticed Debbie put a photo into Ben's pocket, and seeing that made her realize how dangerous what they were doing was. After all going into a solar storm wasn't exactly considered safe; she hoped that they would come back safely.

            "I'll be watching you." Ben told her.

            "Just get back soon, or I'll start looking for a new groom." Debbie joked.

            Ben looked at the engagement ring. "As soon as I come back I'll trade that in for a bigger rock."

            He didn't realize how true those words were.

            "I don't care about rocks. I care about you." Debbie turned to Reed. "Bring him back in one piece got it?"

            Reed smiled and nodded in agreement. Ben and Debbie kissed each other before going their separate ways. Ben turned around and saw Johnny giving him a cocky look.

            "What are you smiling at? Just keep your mouth shut and your mind on those SMBs." Ben growled.

            "Actually, the engines are SMEs. Hydrogen base carbon propellant. Couple generations since your last flight." He replied back cockily. "I'm not as dumb as I look."

            "If you were then I don't think you'd have any brain cells in that skull of yours." Nyx teased.

            "Ouch." Johnny smirked. "That burns me so much. I thought you liked my jokes."

            "That doesn't mean I can't make any of my own."

            Without anything else to do they watched Victor finish the rest of his speech, Nyx wasn't really paying attention and just drifted off into her own thoughts before Ben spoke up, apparently hurt by something Victor said.

            "What's wrong with being bald?"

            "Nothing ignore him... pretty sure Reed is." Nyx muttered the last part while glancing over at her brother and seeing him casting quick looks at Sue.

            They went inside the space shuttle as Victor finished his speech but Nyx stopped and waited by the door like he'd asked. Sue saw her waiting and gave her a dark look before joining the others; Nyx didn't understand why she was so upset when it was obvious she still liked Reed more than she'd ever love Victor.

            "So how did I sound?" 

            Speak of Doom and it shall come. Nyx thought before answering. "It was great."

            "Well let's not keep everyone waiting."

            Nyx followed him to where the others where strapped into their seats and sat down between Sue and Victor, this wasn't going to be good, she could feel hatred almost radiating off Sue and directed towards her. Nyx felt the rocket take off and suddenly remembered earlier when Ben said Johnny crashed a flight simulator, and now they trusted him to fly them to a space station. She suddenly felt sick.

            The entire trip there was silent, the only sound was the rocket, Johnny and Ben occasionally arguing, and of course Reed muttering something incomprehensible in his sleep. When they arrived Sue nudged him awake and Victor led them into the space station. Nyx looked around as they followed him but when she saw what was outside the window focused on that, space was so different than she'd imagined. It was endless and Earth looked so small from up here, but the best part was how beautiful the stars looked from so close. They got to the command center and she ripped her gaze away so she could pay attention to Victor, instead she heard Johnny taunting Ben again.

            "...Maybe next time daddy will let you drive."

            "Keep talking and there won't be a next time." Ben growled.

            Nyx decided to walk away from them incase a fight broke out and walked over to Victor. Sue and Reed were talking about something and as usual Nyx could tell how hesitant he was being, no wonder he didn't have a girlfriend since Sue. Eventually though after Victor was done talking to the people back on Earth, he cleared his throat to let them know that their free time was up, Sue walked over to a console with a screen to show them something.

            "We can monitor the cloud's approach and tests from her." Sue informed them.

            "Is it safe?" Ben asked. Nyx felt the corners of her lips form a slight smile; always count on Ben to be the worried one.

            Reed answered surprisingly. "The shields on the station should protect us."


            "What's wrong Ben? Eighty-million dollars worth of equipment not enough for you?" Victor smirked.

            "Let's start loading these samples." Reed cut in. "Get your suit ready, Ben."

            "Still doing all the heavy lifting." Victor kept talking and looking at Ben before smiling and patting Reed on the head. "Maybe you should've stayed back in the lab, field work never suited you."

            Nyx gave her brother a sad look when he didn't defend himself; of course he never did so why would he start now? Ben on the other hand did stand up for Reed. "He does the talking. I do the walking. Got it?"

            Victor nodded. "So take a walk... Ben. I'm going to borrow Nyx for a second."

            Nyx felt Sue's eyes glaring at her and Reed gave him a fake smile. "Sure... go ahead." 

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