Through a Mummy's Eyes
A Mummy fanfic by Katie Sullivan
You know the drill: Roses are red, these characters aren't mine, please don't sue me, your copyright's fine
~~ Chapter Two: Trials on the Rails ~~
Things were going very well. The O'Connells still had the Scepter of Osiris, but Imhotep had something better: their son. And, along with young Alex O'Connell, the Bracelet of Anubis. He also had a private train--he didn't bother to ask how she-who-was-not-quite-Anck-su-Namun-yet had acquired it. A sizeable contingent of red-robed followers were along for the ride, fanatical and heavily armed. With their support and the Bracelet to guide them, it would only be a matter of time until they reached Ahm Shere. There he would defeat the Scorpion King, conquer the world for Anck-su-Namun and then maybe he could finally get some rest, for Pete's sake!
Imhotep's first plane ride had been an...interesting experience. He much preferred his sand vortex as a mode of transportation, but his powers had yet to regenerate. The sand vortex was roomier, for one thing. It was also private. Being crammed in an airplane seat was less than ideal, even if he did get the window seat. Quasi-Anck-su-Namun sat next to him, of course, deflecting the questions of curious stewardesses. Imhotep was well disguised in a black full-body robe and gloves, but the expressionless metal mask he wore attracted some unwanted attention. Not quite as much attention, though, as the asp that almost-Anck-su-Namun had neglected to check into the cargo hold and which popped out to investigate its surroundings soon after takeoff. She had to do some fast talking to assure the stewardess of the snake's supposedly harmless nature.
Anyway, they were now departing Cairo on their private train. Imhotep was alone in his personal boxcar, conserving his energy until nearly-Anck-su-Namun delivered a certain rather important box.
The woman who called herself Meela was in the next room, discussing their situation with the curator.
The weasel-like little man was explaining, "When Lord Imhotep first encountered the O'Connell infidels, they condemned his immortal soul to the underworld. Because of this, our lord will be vulnerable, even when his powers are fully regenerated."
She knew this already, of course, and it made her nervous, although she didn't show it. "Only when he stands at the head of the army of Anubis will he again be invincible."
"Yes, my lady." The curator handed her the Book of the Dead. "You must keep this with you always."
"Wow! The Book of the Dead!"
Meela turned in surprise at the outburst. She had nearly forgotten the presence of the O'Connell boy. The monolithic Lock-nah moved to strike the boy for speaking, but she stopped him. "Lock-nah! Gentle, now. Let go of his arm." She contemplated the frightened but defiant child. If not for the kinks of fate, she might have been a mother a long time ago, and some of those instincts flickered through her brain. She smiled and preened an unruly lock of his hair. "What a bright little child," she cooed. "Your mother must be missing you terribly." She lightly poked his nose as if he were an infant. "But if you wish to see her again, you must not only be bright, but very well behaved."
Alex gave her a mocking, disgusted look. "Lady, I don't behave for my parents. What makes you think I'll behave for you?"
Meela gave a twisted grin. "Perhaps because your parents wouldn't slip a poisonous snake in your bed while you're sleeping," she said in a slightly sing-song tone, enjoying the boy's horrified expression. Neither of them really knew if she was kidding.
Lock-nah escorted Alex into Imhotep's boxcar for an audience with the mummy. Meela sat back and closed her eyes, swaying with the jostling of the train as she waited. Sure enough, a moment later the boy screamed. He had seen the face of Imhotep. She smiled a little. The poor kid would probably need a clean pair of trousers after this... Never mind the fact that Imhotep was telling him about the Bracelet's curse. If he didn't reach the golden pyramid at Ahm Shere in the next seven days, the golden jewelry would kill him. So neither she nor Imhotep were surprised when the boy agreed to lead them there.
The next order of business was the three mercenaries and their box. Not just any box. The sacred canopic jar chest. Those who opened it were doomed to be the sacrifices necessary for Imhotep to regenerate. The mercenaries had an inkling of some supernatural danger attached to the chest, but when she offered them double the money they had originally agreed upon they put their superstitions aside. She calmly showed them the way to her lord's boxcar. A makeshift altar was set up, lined with canopic jars and candles, sending puffs of incense smoke into the sunless chamber. As the men struggled to bring in the heavy and unwieldy chest, she smiled in not quite as innocent a manner as she had intended. "In here, gentlemen, you shall recieve your just rewards," she said, her voice like chocolate silk.
The leader of the three sneered at her. "No tricks now--we ain't giving up this chest until we're satisfied."
She turned her impulse to giggle into a seductive grin. "Don't worry. There is much satisfaction to be had..." It was an honest enough statement, but she and Imhotep would be the ones enjoying it, not these scruffy ne'er-do-wells.
She slipped out the door and locked it behind them, then stood in the hallway and waited. Imhotep stepped from the shadows and revealed his hideous form to the men, who began screaming and swearing in terror. She let a suitable interval pass, until the sacrificial idiots began scrambling to get the door open. She smiled a little, confident in the strength of the lock, and opened the tiny door at eye-level to peer through the main door. She exchanged a brief look with Imhotep, then told the frantic men, "He wants you to open the chest for him. Quick, open the chest!" She shut the peephole's door and listened. The men argued for a moment, fearing the curse. They soon decided to trust the curse they didn't now over the mummy they did, and, with a grunt and a scraping noise, the chest was opened. She grinned even more widely. Any moment now... Unearthly sounds emanated from behind the locked door, and she grimaced a little. It wasn't pretty, sucking flesh and life force from other people, but it was necessary. And she'd much rather have that flesh on her beloved Imhotep than on those bumbling, greedy morons.
Before long, his voice reached her through the door, no longer rattling with supernatural frenzy, but the smooth human voice that had whispered sweet nothings to her thousands of years ago. "Anck-su-Namun, it is done. Come in and see."
She quickly unlocked the door and found a fully regenerated Imhotep smiling at her. Gingerly stepping around the shriveled remains of the three mercenaries, she tip-toed her way into his arms.
So many of her own memories were still nebulous and spotty, but this--the warm feeling of security, locked in his strong arms--this she remembered most of all.
Still breathing hard from the exertion of regeneration, he held her close, content for the moment merely to embrace her as a man and not a mummy.
There was no telling how long they rested in each other's hypnotic embrace, just standing and reveling in each other's presence. Some time later there was a violent jolt as the train's emergency brake kicked in. Imhotep stumbled a little, and she steadied him. "What in the name of Osiris...?" he muttered. Then, answering his own question, "The boy."
Then came the all-too-familiar sound of gunfire. He cursed again, taking the names of several gods and goddesses in vain, and threw open the door of the boxcar to see what all the commotion was.
The O'Connell boy had escaped somehow and was running across the desert toward the magnificent remains of the Karnac temple complex.
For a split second, the lovers just stared at the ruins of the great temple complex. "Karnac," Imhotep said, waving broadly to take in the oddly familiar scenery.
Of more immediate importance as far as he was concerned was the O'Connell boy. Those idiot minions of his were shooting at him! He had ordered them not to kill the boy under any circumstances, and the moment his back was turned, what did they do? Fire machine guns at him! Imhotep was about to yell at them to stop, but paused. It was time to flex his metaphysical muscles, not his vocal cords. Now that his body was regenerated, his powers were slowly returning; he could feel them. He raised his gloved hands as if leading an unseen congregation of Osiris worshippers, and furrowed his brow in concentration. She-who-would-soon-be-Anck-su-Namun-again stood to one side in awe and admiration. The men on the roof of the train car began levitating. In their surprise, they dropped their guns and yelped for mercy. Imhotep tensed his entire body with the strain. His powers were returning, yes, but weren't one hundred percent yet. Using the last of his supernatural oomph he sent the hapless gunmen hurling through the air. They thumped violently into two great stone pillars some distance away and sank to the ground in lifeless heaps.
Imhotep paused to regain his breath, sweat misting his brow. Not-quite-Anck-su-Namun put a hand on his arm to steady him. He leaned on her, suddenly pale with exhaustion. His inner reserves of strength and her soothing words and caress soon helped him to recover. He set off across the hot sands alone in the direction the boy had fled. Karnac had once been the religious heart of Egypt, the jewel of the Upper Kingdom. Imhotep had spent many days here during religious festivals, often serving Seti's whims. It was disheartening to see the great temple complex fallen into ruin like this. The vivid paint had long since worn off the stone carvings, the statues were crumbled, awnings were gone, and there was no sign of life anywhere. Except...
He spotted the O'Connell boy scrambling through the ruins a short distance away. Imhotep strode confidently forward, heedless of the fact that he was miraculously walking over a pool of water, and easily caught up with the panicked child. Using the very last of his energy, he raised a hand and caused Alex to levitate until he was at eye level. Trying not to tremble with the strain, he managed to look calm, even paternal. He wagged a scolding finger at Alex, who floated slightly from side to side in response to the motion of his hand. "Naughty, naughty," he chided, then let him tumble harmlessly into the sand. Shaken and defeated, the child brushed himself off and reluctantly took Imhotep's hand.
The regenerated mummy escorted his young prisoner back to the train, where he passed into the custody of a less-than-thrilled Lock-nah. Imhotep would normally have punished the hulking warrior for allowing the boy to escape, but at the moment he was more concerned with finding a place to lie down. The telekinetic outbursts had depleted his energy reserves, and if he didn't rest soon he'd probably faint. Sort-of-Anck-su-Namun took his arm and led him back into his boxcar, where he reclined on a musty divan in the shadows. Soon he either fell asleep or passed out, he wasn't sure which, in his beloved's soft arms.
On to Chapter Three: Restoration...