BioQuest: The Fray

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Tenenbaum didn’t say a word, just kept getting her supplies together in preparation to make Lot 192. Looked like she was coming along, at least, but it was up to Elizabeth to decide anything that remained.

With a careful breath as she watched Jack, Elizabeth reached for the radio from Diane. She only hesitated for a second before opening the channel. “Booker, do you read me?”

“Yes,” he answered, curt with the expectation of worse news he always seemed to carry. He wouldn’t be wrong, not this time. “McDonough’s secure.”

“Can you meet us Suchong’s old apartment? We need Lot 192 for Jack now.” As if on cue, Jack hissed and tensed while he was getting his weapons together for braving the city. Try as he might to be subtle about it, Elizabeth couldn’t keep from noticing his every expression and stumble.

“The hell happened?” An echo of McDonough in the background layered with Booker’s response, but they didn’t have time for either. Not yet.

“We’ll tell you when we get there,” Elizabeth explained, picking up extra ammo for her gun.

“Right,” he grumbled and the line went to static.

“Ready to go?” Tenenbaum hadn’t wasted a moment, her pistol and science equipment ready.

“As I’ll ever be,” Jack breathed, pale but determined as he made his way to the exit.

“I’ll stay with the girls and watch the clinic. You be safe out there, you hear me?” Diane squeezed Elizabeth’s hand gently, giving her a worried smile.

“Of course, Diane.” Elizabeth felt a pang of guilt that it couldn’t be a promise, but she would do her best. They all needed to come home.

– – – Outside Suchong’s Old Apartment – – –

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Slowed down by Jack, they arrived to gunfire and shouting already underway. Without a word, everyone reacted like a well-oiled machine. They covered each other’s back and pushed forward to the apartment itself– no sign of Booker or McDonough, unless the dead splicers they passed counted as evidence.

“Elizabeth,” Jack called out, pointing down the hallway to a lit room across from a slumped over, bloody splicer. “The– there. I saw Booker.”

How he caught so much in battle, she would never know. She nodded, leading the way with her gun ready. Tenenbaum shoved past, going directly for the shelves and muttering in German.

“Thank God,” Booker muttered, stepping back to give her space. Science was… Out of his scope, so she couldn’t be surprised.

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“Good to see you too,” she teased him, smirking. Everything had been so chaotic from possible treaties to Atlas’ ambitions, this was a shred of normalcy Elizabeth needed.

“Aha!” That was the only alert from Tenenbaum that she was making progress before she cleared off a battered desk and set to work.

“So…” McDonough cleared his throat, thumbing to Jack. He looked older than she thought he’d be, but he had a naturally fatherly air about him that made you want to trust him. “This the kid?”

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“Yeah,” Booker answered, studying Jack and his unsteady breathing. “Yeah, that’s the one.”

“Ryan’s kid,” McDonough said through a laugh. “Yer dad’s not a bad man, son, he’s just…” He scratched the back of his head awkwardly, the sentence dying. “I’m Bill McDonough. ‘S great to meet ya.”

“Thanks,” Jack answered, taking Bill’s offered hand. “He… Kind of is.”

“Almost done,” Tenenbaum interrupted, though Elizabeth doubted that she’d known she had. This was Tenenbaum’s area of expertise, after all.

“Hello, boyo,” came the fizzled voice of Atlas through Booker’s radio. “Hope you ‘ad fun cutting down my people,” he spat, a sure sign he wasn’t alone. He only had to put on a show for his people, not one of them mattered to him.

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“‘Cause we’re gonna get even.” Elizabeth raised her eyebrows, distantly impressed with his emotion. For a person who can’t bring himself to genuinely connect, he almost sounded invested. “Hurry now to Point Prometheus, an’ you might just be in time to save yer old man.”

Thankfully, they had Tenenbaum to break up the staticy silence that followed.

“Jack,” she called him over, holding up two bottles. “You’re a free man.”


What do you want to do, Elizabeth?

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BioQuest: Sideways

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Elizabeth didn’t have an exact count on how many people from the Family were with Grace, but she believed Grace wouldn’t let harm come to them. Even if they didn’t agree to the truce, she’d keep the peace. Elizabeth had to believe that.

“I have considered your offer, but I actually come here with one of my own.” She holstered her weapon, hearing Diane doing the very same behind her. If anyone recognized her in connection to Ryan, they didn’t mention it.

“We’ve made a truce with Ryan,” she started frankly, hoping that honesty would earn her some leniency. Elizabeth saw anger come to Grace quickly, spreading to the Family with her like wildfire.

“A truce with that monster! Like he cares what happens to the good people of Rapture,” she scoffed. “Throw your lot in with him if you like, but we–”

“Grace, please hear me out before you decide. I implore you,” Elizabeth begged, trying to pull this back from the brink. She only had this one chance. “This is our opportunity to bring peace to Rapture for everyone.”

Grace shook her head, scowl unwavering. “Peace? That animal doesn’t want any peace.” Muttering agreement rippled through the group beyond her. “How can you tell me about peace with Ryan when he holds Dr. Lamb, the one who really cares about us little people?”

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“We’ll talk to him about Dr. Lamb,” Diane interjected, stepping up to stand beside Elizabeth. “It’s the only right thing to do.”

It was a tall order, but they had to try it. And the fact that Diane came forward… Elizabeth couldn’t be happier. Her friend was finding the self-esteem to be brave when she had to be.

“You do that,” Grace bit back, but at least her expression had softened slightly. “But you hear this, and you remember it well: his answer is ours.”

“I understand,” Elizabeth nodded, taking the unspoken command to leave. Diane walked alongside her in silence until they were far enough from the Limbo Room for comfort when the radio she carried crackled to life.

“Zur Hölle fahren,” came the first distant words, and Elizabeth’s heart froze. Gunfire followed while Diane scrambled to get the radio where they could both speak into it.

“Tenenbaum! Can you hear me?” Elizabeth waited for what felt like ages in static.

“Yes, yes, I hear you,” she snapped back. “Scheisse.” More gunfire burst in the background. “Fontaine was watching us. With you both and Booker gone, he attacked.”

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“Oh, oh no,” Diane worried, her brows furrowing. “What about the girls?”

“And Jack?” They only just opened up to one another, finally starting to date. She waited for him to ask, why did she do that? What if he was–

“We pushed him back. They’re safe, but not for long.” Static punctuated her sentence and it was all Elizabeth could do not to run off without a word.

“We’ll be there soon,” Elizabeth promised, rushing ahead as Diane hurried to keep up.

– – – Back at the clinic – – –

The first thing she heard was Jack biting back a scream, and Elizabeth couldn’t hold back anymore.

“Lizzie, wait,” Diane tried to shout, breathless, but with no luck in stopping her.

“Jack, where are you? Jack,” she called again, running through the second set of clinic doors to see him breathless, pale, and sweaty, leaning again a counter.

“H-here,” he forced out, wincing.

“Fontaine used a command, one I need Lot 192 to reverse,” Tenenbaum explained from her lab area. “Ryan hasn’t delivered, so we would have to go and get the supplies ourselves. But he can’t go anywhere.”

“I can–” Jack cut off in a horrid gasp, gripping the edge of the counter he was against. “I can go. I’ve had worse.”

“You aren’t convincing anyone, Jack,” Elizabeth said, tempted to be gentler but knowing she had to be honest first.

“I need the dose, or I’ll die waiting here for it. My heart is stopping every–” He cringed, eyes shut tight for a few seconds. “It’s stopping too often. I won’t make it unless I go too.”


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BioQuest: Meet the Family

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Hearing Booker out about the plan to save McDonough, Elizabeth planted her hands on her hips thoughtfully. “Can you do that on your own?”

And Booker scoffed, wrapping up his work on his gun. “Of course. I take plenty of jobs like this.”

She couldn’t stop a smile at how proud he was of it. A far cry from when they first met and he talked like a ruffian who went about killing people for sport. …Which was not as far from the truth then, Elizabeth supposed, and pushed that thought aside. “Just… Please be careful, Booker.”

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“I should say that to you,” he shot back matter-of-factly, holstering his weapon and turning to her. “The Rapture Family was unhinged before Lamb was imprisoned in Persephone. Now?” He shook his head. “They’ll be in a rage the second you even ask about making peace with Ryan.”

“Which is why I’ll strike a deal, and I won’t go alone.” Her smile took on a smug edge, which Booker answered with a sigh. Elizabeth hoped he’d finally come to accept or at least resign himself to the fact that her mind was made up. “I’ll take Diane with me.”

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“Diane?” His skepticism was clear as day, of course, and he evidently wasn’t alone in it. Diane fumbled with what she had been doing, managing to avoid dropping anything– narrowly.

“Me? Oh, Lizzy, I’m flattered, but I don’t know,” she started, worry taking over her expression in a pout. “Jack taught me to shoot and all, but do you really think I’m the right one for this?”

“Yes, I do.” Elizabeth insisted, sure and correcting. “You’re like them, Diane. Ryan promised everyone on the surface that they’d have a better life in Rapture, and now they’re trapped down here. They’ll listen to you because you understand what they’ve been through like no one else can.”

“If you say so, it must be the case,” Booker agreed, his cynical frown softened by a hint of trust.

“Well,” Diane thought out loud. A smile snuck up on her and she drew herself up. “Well, alright then. I’ll just be a second.”

— Outside The Limbo Room —

“It’s closed,” Diane whispered as Elizabeth put her hand against the door. She’d never been to the Limbo Room, but she heard of it from plenty of their patients back at the clinic. It provided a lot of solace in these dark days– and now it had closed its doors.

“Well now,” a woman’s voice cut through the stale air, and Diane stood beside Elizabeth with her hand on her holster. “What’ve we got here, gents?” A few men, sickly with splicing, trailed after her. They either had wrenches or pistols, but all of it was bad news. It was four against two.

“Brunette looks like the pretty one Atlas tol’us about,” one of the men said through a dark laugh. And shortly after, a gunshot took him down.

The reaction was immediate. Atlas’ people went on alert to find out who attacked them, conveniently forgetting about their original targets. Diane shot one and Elizabeth, the other, but the woman escaped in the scuffle.

“She’ll be telling Atlas, no doubt.” Elizabeth turned to the voice to see Grace reloading. “I can’t stand all this violence, but these brutes give us no choice.” She gave Diane a skeptical glance, but in the end, she settled on smiling at Elizabeth. “Have you considered my offer, then?”

Gradually, Elizabeth became aware of people from the Family also standing guard with Grace. They nodded or didn’t acknowledge them at all, but… Elizabeth had received far less friendly invitations.


What do you want to do, Elizabeth?

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BioQuest: Truce

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“What the hell you’d want to talk to him for?” Booker asked Jack skeptically, pulling Ryan to his feet. Booker’s contempt was for Andrew rather than his son, of course, a fact that Sullivan clearly knew well from his open indifference.

Better than open hostility, at least.

Elizabeth stood beside Diane, who had ushered the girls off to look after patients, and now all they could do was wait. That was likely easier for Elizabeth than the others, since she at least knew what Jack wanted to discuss.

“It’s important, Booker. Trust me,” Jack added, going for Booker’s weakness. He let go of Ryan with a warning look and standing close to Rapture’s founder just in case. It was a start.

“You’ve already figured out that these people saved me from Fontaine,” Jack said, gaze set on Ryan. “But there’s more to this than you could find out on your own. Than any of us alone could.”

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Elizabeth caught Tenenbaum smiling and couldn’t resist a smirk herself. Who knew she’d start in the sky and find her place at the bottom of the sea? (And a boyfriend– nothing could dampen that recent development.)

“I need you to trust them like I do, because they’ve always looked out for me.”

Ryan scowled, holding out his cuffs to Sullivan, who fished out the keys to free Ryan. “Son, they hid you from me.”

“Because they didn’t know what you’d do.” Jack let the implication hang, and it worked: Ryan let his argument die. “And now that they do, they’ll have to learn to trust you too.”

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Tenenbaum scoffed. Crossing her arms, Diane muttered loud enough for Ryan to hear, “You said it.”

“Please listen,” Jack implored, less tactical and more emotional when talking to them directly instead of Andrew Ryan. “This plan means everyone has to work together. Right now, Rapture is divided between Ryan, the Rapture Family, and Atlas.”

Gesturing to the inner clinic beyond him, Jack continued, “We’ve helped the Family and you here, Ryan. Together, we have a chance to unite the Family, or at least some of them, with you against Atlas. We can take back Rapture and restore it as a better place. For everyone.”

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“Hold it,” Sullivan stepped in. He didn’t agree with Ryan, Elizabeth knew as much from Booker, but he must still be caught off guard. “We just find out he’s your son, and he’s making decisions now?”

“He is, and he will be part of my decisions,” Ryan answered curtly, “Though he should know that peace with those cultists is–”

“They’re not all cultists.” The hushed surprise at someone daring to talk over Ryan was heavy in the room. “People took shelter with the Family after they’d been driven from their homes by poverty and war. There’s no city without people, Ryan. And this is our only chance to save it all.”


What do you want to do, Elizabeth / Tenenbaum?

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BioQuest: Parting Thoughts

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Sullivan’s arrival and reach for his weapon set everything on its head all over again. Jack tensed, moving instinctively to a combative stance, and Tenenbaum reached for her own gun in return.

Diane went to calm down the recovered sisters, since most of them were already picking up scalpels already– and they could be deadly with those. There was no stopping Tenenbaum, but Elizabeth stood between Sullivan and Jack, calling to Booker at the same time. “Booker, please,” she asked, and he delivered.

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“It’s alright, Sullivan. Tensions were running high between Ryan and Miss McClintock here,” he explained in what was only partially deceitful to cover up the entire messy story where Ryan tried to kill Jasmine (and the reasons why by extension).

Elizabeth knew he was doing it to protect Jack’s identity from Sullivan and the public, but it made her stomach twist to think they were covering Ryan’s attempt on an innocent woman’s life. Fontaine had deceived her into giving up her child. That– hit close to home.

“And it didn’t seem right to restrain the lady. It’s not as if I could send him out on these streets alone either,” Booker finished. He and Sullivan stared at one another tensely and yet– the director of Rapture’s security moved his hand away from his holster and crossed his arms instead.

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“Is that the case, Mr. Ryan?”

Andrew laughed drily, turning to look at Sullivan. “I’m… Afraid so.” Bound by the laws of his own city, Andrew couldn’t tell the truth of what happened here any more than they could. He’d be arrested for his intentions and possibly even killed. Who knows what would come of the city then?

“I’ll just get him to his feet now,” Booker talked to Sullivan, reaching a hand out to Ryan. “And hopefully they’ve both learned their lesson.”

“Wait,” Jack interrupted and all eyes landed on him. “I want to talk to him first.”


What do you want to do, Elizabeth / Tenenbaum?

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BioQuest: Crossroads

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The clinic had quieted down a bit since they left not long ago, but a thick tension took the place of stewing rage. Jack took his hand from hers as they stepped in, an act she attributed to Ryan more than anything.

Booker stood between the door and Ryan, and Tenenbaum put herself between their captive and the rest of the clinic. Elizabeth found herself going to check on Diane first while Jack went over to Tenenbaum.

“Diane, how—”

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“A traitor, he called me,” she answered the question before Elizabeth could finish. “Me, after all he’s done!” She threw her arms up, crossing them right after and finally looking Elizabeth in the eye. “I just can’t believe it. Can’t believe him. The arrogance! How did I ever get fooled into loving such a– Ugh!”

To get her attention, Elizabeth put her hand on Diane’s shoulder and smiled. “Because you see the best in people, Diane, and you look past their flaws to see their potential.” Her anger softened to surprise, and at last, Diane smiled back. “It’s not your fault that he chose to be how he is now.”

“You’re sweet,” she answered, pulling her into a quick hug. “I only needed a second. Come on.” She stepped back and lead the way back to Ryan and the others.

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Elizabeth ignored Ryan in favor of the last friend she’d yet to check on. “Tenenbaum, are you alright?”

The doctor only chuckled, waving away her concern. “Liebling, I am fine.”

“Jack,” Ryan interrupted almost fondly. “I should have known that a son of mine would not be contained by the likes of Fontaine.”

“I didn’t do it alone. I couldn’t have,” he amended, gesturing to the them.

“Booker?!” Sullivan’s distinct accent cut through the gathering, and Elizabeth looked his way just in time to see him reaching for his holster. “You got two seconds to clear this up.”

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What do you want to do, Elizabeth / Tenenbaum?

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BioQuest: Family

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Disregarding Ryan, Tenenbaum turned to Booker and placed her hand on his shoulder. “Report our new guest to our old friend.”

“On it,” Booker answered, pausing by Ryan. “Anything they say, you do it. Or I’ll be back out here to bend your knee the other way.” Tenenbaum chuckled as he punctuated the threat with two claps on Ryan’s back, heading into the back for the radio.

“I respect his enthusiasm,” Ryan commented, watching Tenenbaum as she came over to stand in front of him with her pistol drawn. “Not necessarily his methods.”

Elizabeth slipped out as he spoke, and she could only hope the young woman didn’t have any DeWitt-level ideas up her sleeve. Ryan only had two knees and he wasn’t getting any younger.

“Are you one to judge methods, Ryan?” Tenenbaum glared down at him, continuing. “We caught you hunting down your mistress for petty vengeance.”

“…Andrew?” Diane’s distinct accent cut through the soft chatter of the clinic and Tenenbaum found some satisfaction in Ryan’s shock.

“Diane?” He turned around, pushing himself to stand. Diane’s brow furrowed and her jaw locked.

Tenenbaum met Elizabeth’s gaze past the two of them and, well, she hoped that hopeful look on her face was well-placed. “Is this where you’ve been all this time? I, I was worried–”

“Don’t! Don’t you lie to me, Andrew.” The emotion of the moment was hitting her all at once, and she couldn’t even look Ryan in the eye as she shifted restlessly.

“You, you’ve had it made in the shade up in your hideaway, wearing snazzy suits…” Diane huffed and whirled around on Ryan and it occurred to Tenenbaum that she’d be a good mother one day. “The people of Rapture are suffering out here. The question isn’t where I was. Where were you?”

“Mr. Ryan?” Tenenbaum stood tall and wondered how Jack got in without anyone hearing or stopping him. He squared his shoulders, leveling a steady gaze at Andrew Ryan. “I’m Jack Jolene.”


What do you want to do, Tenenbaum?

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