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Bohemian Blade Runner (an AU Queen/Blade Runner x-over fanfic)

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*****

Sometime in the early 21st century after the world was plagued by war, famine, plagues, and disease that wiped out a rather large majority of Earth's inhabitants, Freestone Enterprises was able to advance the human race into the NEXUS phase, a being that was virtually identical to a human, known as a Replicant.

The NEXUS 39 Replicants were superior beings with great strength and agility, and had incredible intelligence all thanks to the genetic engineers who worked day and night around the clock to create them.

However, as time went on, the newly created Replicants would never get to experience the greatness of life on Earth as they were used in the off world colonies as slave labor and to fight hazardous wars on other planets within the solar system.

After a bloody mutiny by a NEXUS 39 combat team in an off world colony of planet Rhapsody that left thousands dead, Replicants were declared illegal on Earth and under penalty of death, special police squads, known as the Bohemian Blade Runner Units, had orders to shoot and kill upon detection of any trespassing Replicant. This was not called execution, murder, termination, or assassination. It was called retirement...

 

Chapter Text

 

Los Angeles
November 2139

A tall young man by the name of Gwilym Lee stood at the window of his office, smoking a cigarette, just wanting this day to be over with as he looked out at the vast dystopian city of Los Angeles. He had already screened about twenty employees just today and already it was getting on his nerves being stuck in this stuffy and boring office. (A/N: I was originally gonna have Jim Hutton play this role but I somehow forgot and replaced him with Gwilym so he's the only Bohemian Rhapsody cast member in this.)

He stood in silence, waiting, his blue eyes fixed on the city that lay before him, clouds of white smoke drifting from his nose and mouth as he scanned the horizon, watching plumes of fire burst out from the smoke stacks of the Los Angeles oil refinery.

"Next subject, Prenter, Paul, engineer, bio hazard waste disposal, file section, new employee, seven days," a voice announces over an intercom.

Here we go, the young man thinks to himself as there's a sudden knock at his office door. "Yes, come in," he says.

The door opened and a middle aged mustached man with short dirty blonde hair and blue eyes, wearing white scrubs entered the room.

The tall young man turned away from the window and looked over at the blonde haired man. "Hello Paul. Please have a seat," he says, gesturing to the table.

Paul nodded silently and sat down at the end of the table while the taller man moved to the other end where a machine was sat on the tabletop with the words Voight-Kampff etched on it. Taking his seat, the curly haired individual placed his unfinished cigarette in a nearby ashtray and began to press some buttons on the machine while adjusting a screen that showed a close up of the blonde haired man's iris.

"You mind if we talk?" Paul asks in a distinctive Irish accent. "I'm a bit nervous when I take tests."

"Please don't move," the tall man says, his focus still on the machine in front of him.

"Right, sorry Mr. Lee," Paul says. "I've already had a few IQ tests this year, I don't think I've ever had one of these--"

"Reaction time is a factor in this, so please pay attention," Gwilym interrupts him. "Now, answer as quickly as you can."

"Righto," Paul mutters.

"Eight, two, one, Belfast," Gwilym absentmindedly reads off a paper.

"That's me birthday and where I'm from," Paul says to him.

Gwilym furrowed his brow in confusion. "What?"

"The twenty first of August is me birthday, Belfast is where I'm from," Paul explains.

Gwilym nodded, understanding what he meant. "Belfast a nice place?"

Paul stared at him with a deadpan expression. "It's alright I guess. Is that part of the test?"

The young man shivered inwardly to the man's creepy look then turned his attention back to the machine. "Nope it was just a warm up."

"It's nothing fancy, nowadays it's a burnt up nuclear wasteland," Paul adds in, looking straight at the machine which magnified his eye until the entire iris filled the whole screen.

Silence followed his last words as the young man flipped to a page containing all the basic questions. Up above them, the ceiling fans whirred. Glancing at the first question, he could feel the sweat gathering on his face.

He nervously cleared his throat. "You're in a desert walking along when suddenly, you look down and see a--" he begins.

"Which one?" Paul interrupts.

"What?"

"Which desert?" Paul asks.

"Doesn't really matter which desert it is, this is completely hypothetical," Gwilym explains to him. 

"But why would I be in a desert?" Paul asks. "How did I get there?"

For a moment, the young man hesitated on an answer, knowing what Paul was trying to do. He was trying to intimidate him.

"Maybe you're fed up with the world and just want to be by yourself, who knows," the young man says. "So all of a sudden you look down and see a tortoise crawling towards you--"

"What's a tortoise?" the other man asks.

With his patience wearing thin, Gwilym took a nervous drag of his cigarette. "Do you know what a turtle is?"

"Yes."

"Same thing," Gwilym says.

Paul gave him a slight smile. "I've never seen a turtle before, but I understand what you mean. Could you describe to me what a turtle looks like?"

The young man looked up from his paperwork, a chill going down his spine with the way Paul was looking at him. He quickly looked away, turning his attention back to the Voight-Kampff machine as he continued with the hypothetical question.

"You reach down and flip the tortoise over on it's back," he says.

He suddenly notes a slight change in the pupil, a clear sign that the question was having some kind of effect on Paul.

"Do you make these questions yourself Mr. Lee, or do they write them for you?" Paul asks.

"You flip the tortoise over on it's back, it's belly baking in the hot sun and it's beating it's little legs trying to turn itself over, but it can't," Gwilym says. "It needs your help but you're refusing to help it."

"What the bloody hell do you mean I'm not helping?" Paul asks, raising his voice as his eye twitches.

"I mean you're not helping," Gwilym says, keeping his own voice calm. "Why is that, Paul?"

Paul doesn't answer. In fact he looks rather shocked and even a little surprised. Gwilym glanced back to the machine, the needle on the Voight-Kampff remaining still. 

"Relax Paul, they're just questions," he says to him with a smile. "And to answer your question from earlier, yes they are written down for me. It's simply a test designed to provoke an emotional response. Shall we continue?"

Paul nodded as Gwilym placed his cigarette back in his ashtray and looked back down at the paper in front him.

"Alright now I want you to describe to me in single words, only the good words that come into your mind about your mum," Gwilym tells him, watching the iris on the screen of the machine.

"You want to know about me mum?" Paul asks.

"Yes."

Paul leaned toward the table, his face suddenly taking on a dark look. "Let me tell you about me mum..."

Before Gwilym had a chance to react, the sound of a blaster being fired from underneath the table broke the silence in the office and the young man felt a sharp searing pain in his shoulder as he was pushed back in his chair, the force of the impact sending him through the wall. He screamed in agony, catching a glimpse of the crazed look on Paul's face as the gun was fired again, the bullet of the blaster hitting him directly through the spine.

*****

Brian May always ended up in Chinatown at the end of a long day with his favorite spot over at the Noodle Bar where he would read a book or the local newspaper and wait for a seat to open at the bar. His mass of dark curly hair blowing in the breeze, he stayed huddled in his spot under the awning of a closed down flower shop, watching as people passed by in the rain with their umbrellas. Overhead he caught sight of the neon colored advertisement blimp that promised a new life in the off world colonies. He always scoffed at it, knowing it was anything but a golden land of opportunity and adventure.

When a spot finally opened, the old Chinese man, who he knew pretty well by now, waved him over. Already knowing what he was going to order since he pretty much ordered the same thing ever since moving here from London about ten years ago, Brian stood up, tucking his book away into the inside pocket of his long overcoat, and hiking up his collar, he wandered over to the bar in the pouring rain.

"Nani ni shimasho ka?" the cook asks.
(What would you like to have?)

"Number four, please," Brian says to the Chinese cook.

"Futatsu de jubun desuyo," the old man says, holding up two fingers.
(It's two / two is enough)

"No, mate, two, two, four," Brian says, holding up four fingers.

"Futatsu de jubun desuyo," the old man repeats again.

Brian sighed in defeat. "Alright, fine. Some noodles too, please if you will."

The cook nodded and after handing over a pair of chopsticks to the curly haired man, he went to work on preparing the dish for his young customer, and a few seconds later, a dish of vegan noodles was placed on the bar.

Brian had only taken a few bites when he heard two voices over his shoulder, but he kept his eyes on his food as he was too hungry to deal with street beggars. 

"Hey," one voice says to Brian as a hand was placed on his shoulder. "Idi-wa."
(A/N: According to the city speak script made for the movie, it means "Hey, come here." in Korean)

Brian looked up, instantly recognizing a Korean LAPD officer clad in the normal police gear standing next to a dark skinned man with a pencil thin mustache and short cornrowed hair that he recognized to be Peter Straker. 

"M'sieu, aduanon kovershim angam bitte," Peter says to him, a hint of Jamaican in his tone of voice.
(Sir, will you please come with me now)

Brian beckoned over the Chinese cook. "What are they saying?" he asks, gesturing over his shoulder.

"He say you under arrest, Mr. Brian," the old cook says.

"Sorry mates, but you have the wrong guy," Brian says to him as he turns back towards his food.

 "Lófaszt, nehogy már. Te vagy a Blade...Blade Runner," Peter says, his tone insistent.
(Horsedick, no way! You are the Blade...Blade Runner)

"He say you Blade Runner," the cook tells Brian.

"Oh yeah, well you tell him I'm eating," Brian says back to him.

"Captain Beach, toka, me ni omae yo!" Peter argues.
(Captain Beach wants to see you, y'know)

Brian rolled his eyes and turned back to the two officers. "Beach, huh? Well does he know I'm retired now and in the music business?"

Peter nodded and smiled at the curly haired musician. "Hai. Ikou."
(Yes. Let's go)

"No worry, Mr. Brian, you take food with you," the cook says.

Brian stood up with his bowl of noodles. "Thanks, mate," he says, and turning towards the other two, he gestures for them to lead the way. "Gentlemen."

"Nante pūdoruheddo," Peter mutters to the other officer.
(A/N: That should translate to "What a poodle head")

The curly haired musician chuckled as he followed Straker to his Police Spinner, knowing all too well what they were conversing over. He had spent enough time learning the language to recognize it to be gutter talk, also known as city speak, which was a mixture of Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Hungarian, German, and even French. 

They walked to the end of the block, weaving their way through the crowded street until finally reaching the curb where the Spinner was parked. Bowl of noodles in hand, Brian climbed into the passenger side while Straker got into the driver side and started up the Spinner. He ate his noodles in silence as the vehicle's engine roared to life and rose up above the street until they were high up into the skyline, and from there, the curly haired musician admired the vast neon colored view of Los Angeles.

Flying onward, Brian looked out the rain streaked window as they rounded the corner of a skyscraper that led downtown to the old precinct, his gaze landing on the familiar face of a young Japanese woman, clad in the old style geisha makeup on the giant screen of the Los Angeles Insurance Company building, advertising the latest nourishment pill.

It was only a few minutes until they reached their destination and Brian started to feel anxiety building in the pit of his stomach for whatever the reason was that he was needed back here. He hadn't been to the precinct in the last five years. The day he turned in his badge, he left and not once did he look back. 

"Now on glide path, on course, over the landing threshold,"  the Spinner computer announces as they slowly landed on the helipad roof of the station.

*****

With Straker following behind him, Brian quickly walked through the large high-ceilinged lobby of the precinct to the familiar route where Jim Beach's office was. Not bothering to knock, he opened the door to the Captain's office and walked right in. The small room was just as dark and dusty as he remembered it, and the man sitting at the desk had a generous amount of gray hair.

Jim looked up, and seeing it was his former curly haired bounty hunter, he smiled warmly. "Hi, mate, long time no see. How have you been?"

Brian shrugged. "Fine, I guess. What's up?"

"You may want to sit down for this," Jim says. "Tea?"

Brian nodded and sat down in the chair as Jim stood up from his spot and went to prepare drinks for him and his guest. The anxiety in the pit of his stomach continued and felt to only be getting worse with each second that ticked by. At last, the silence was broken when Jim returned to the desk and placed a cup of hot tea in front of the curly haired musician.

"Four skin jobs from an off-world colony jumped a shuttle, killed all crew and passengers," Jim says to him. "They found the shuttle drifting off the coast about two weeks ago so we know they're around here."

Absorbing this information, Brian took a sip of his tea to swallow the lump in his throat. "Well I'm very sorry to hear that, but I can't help you, mate. I'm retired. Give it to Gwilym, I hear he's quite good."

"I did," Jim says. "He can breathe alright as long as nobody unplugs him. He's not good enough, though. Not as good as you. I need you, Bri. You're one of the best that's ever happened to this department. But this is a really bad one, the worst yet. I need the old Blade Runner. I need your kind of magic."

"Sorry Jim, I was quit when I came in here, I'm twice as quit now," Brian says, and standing up, he headed for the door.

"Oi!" Jim calls after him. "You know the score, mate. If you aren't a cop, you're little people."

Brian paused in opening the door, and turned slowly back around, noticing the desperate look in the Captain's aging face.

"There's no choice in this is there?" Brian asks in a low voice.

Jim solemnly shook his head. "No choice. Come on mate, sit down and I'll explain everything."

Chapter Text

 

Taking a seat again at Jim's desk, the old Captain pressed a button on a handheld device, and the TV behind him flicked to life with the interview that Gwilym conducted with Paul. It was a multiple split screen view with one part showing Prenter's retinal response, one showing the reading of the empathetic response, one showing Gwilym's view, and another showing the test subject's full face.

"The subject's name is Paul Prenter," Jim says. "Incept date is 21st of August, 2138. A fairly new model."

Brian turned his lip up in disgust, noting that this Paul Prenter individual was one ugly looking character. He kept his comments to himself and watched the interview from the beginning as Straker stood in silence by the door.

"...I've already had a few IQ tests this year, I don't think I've ever had one of these--"

"Reaction time is a factor in this, so please pay attention. Now, answer as quickly as you can."

"Righto."

"Eight, two, one, Belfast."

"That's me birthday and where I'm from."

"What?"

"There was an escape from one the off-world colonies about two weeks ago," Jim says, breaking Brian's attention away from the TV screen. "They slaughtered thirty people and jumped a shuttle scheduled to arrive in San Francisco. Three nights ago they tried to break into Freestone Enterprises. One of them got fried running through an electrical field and by the time we got there, the others were gone. On the possibility they may try to infiltrate his employees, I had Gwilym go over and run Voight-Kampff tests on all the new workers. It looks like he got himself one. Or more correctly, it got him."

"So what type are we dealing with on this one?" Brian asks, pointing to Paul.

"Artillery runner and loader," Jim says.

Brian raised an eyebrow and whistled. "Bloody hell, he sounds like a tough one."

Jim nodded in agreement. "You're telling me. This one can lift over five-hundred pounds day and night. You can't hurt him, either. You have to kill him."

Brian snorted. "Not even if you comment on that terrible mustache of his?" he asks sarcastically. 

"...So all of a sudden you look down and see a tortoise crawling towards you--"

"What's a tortoise?"

"Do you know what a turtle is?"

"Yes."

"Same thing."

"I've never seen a turtle before, but I understand what you mean..."

"I don't get it though, why do they risk coming back to Earth knowing they're bloody arses are declared illegal," Brian says, looking over at Jim. "What do they want from Freestone Enterprises?"

Jim shook his head and chuckled. "You tell me mate, that's what you're here for. Here take a look at what we're dealing with."

Pausing the multi-cam surveillance video, Jim pressed another button and the screen changed to show a head slowing rotating in a 360 degree circle. It was a head of a male replicant with tanned skin, shoulder length wavy black hair, dark brown almond shaped eyes, sharp nose, full lips, and an impressive looking jawline. For a moment, Brian seemed caught off guard. He'd seen many replicants before but none ever looked as exotic as this one.

"What's this one?" the curly haired musician asks, his eyes still glued to the TV screen.

"NEXUS 39, Freddie Mercury," Jim reads off a paper. "Model number F1946B11-199X. Incept date 2135, September 5th. He's been used in various combats, has incredible strength and they call him Mr. Bad Guy, and among other nicknames such as White Queen and Killer Queen, he's most likely the leader." He looked up from the paper and up at the image on the TV screen. "And being an older model, he may not even look like that anymore. For all we know he could have a mustache or his hair could be shorter."

"Well that's not much help," Brian observes.

"True, but unlike Prenter and according to the makers I talked with, this one has a very distinctive flamboyant appearance and was modeled in very unique styles of clothing when first created," Jim says. "Take a look."

He slid a manila folder across the table, and for a brief moment, Brian wondered why something like this would need a folder, but when he flipped it open, he soon figured out real quick why. It was a small stack of photographs of the NEXUS model with the first one being a full bodied image that was completely nude, giving the curly haired musician an eye full of long lightly muscled legs, and a skinny torso and broad chest covered in a moderate abundance of dark hair. But one thing that really stood out was how well endowed this replicant was...

Feeling heat rise to his cheeks, Brian quickly flipped to another photo in the stack, this one showing quite a revealing outfit as a tight black leotard with a deep chest plunge that revealed his entire chest and stomach. On the next photo, the outfit was pretty much the same thing, only this one was white, and on the third and fourth photo, the replicant was modeled in a long sleeved black and white diamond patterned jumpsuit, and lastly a long sleeved red sequined leotard onesie. (Bowie wore the onesie better, fight me IRL, nyahahahaha! 😝🤣😂)

Fucking hell, this thing makes these ridiculous outfits actually look good, Brian thought to himself. "I don't think I'll have any trouble spotting this one in a crowd," he says, and closing the folder, he slid it back towards the Captain.

"Yes, he won't be hard to spot unless his hair is different or if he has any facial hair," Jim says. "Now for the others."

Pressing another button on the remote, the rotating head of the Freddie model disappeared, and another slow spinning head appeared on screen. This time it was a doll faced female replicant with long dark hair and blue eyes. Brian almost thought she was beautiful if it weren't for the emptiness in her expression that made her look creepy.

"This one is Mary Austin," Jim says. "She was trained in the off world kick murder squad and is notorious for being able to knock her opponents out with just one punch."

"And the next one?" Brian asks, wanting to speed things along.

The rotating head of Mary changed to the last replicant, this one a male that looked to be very feminine with long bright blonde hair, blue eyes, rounded jawline, and a dimpled chin. (A/N: I'm sorry I'm bad at describing what Roger looks like. 😶)

"This one is Roger Meddows Taylor," Jim says. "Incept date 26th of July, 2139. He's a pleasure model, brand new, and a standard item for drag bars and male strip clubs in the LGBTQ+ community of the outer military colonies. He may appear weak but he is in fact so strong that even by screaming, he can make the ears of his victims bleed."

"Hmmm, how lovely," Brian mumbles, his scalp prickling to the very thought of that last bit of information. "I'd like a screenshot of these models faces from all angles."

Jim nodded. "Sure thing. Another thing you need to be aware of is these particular models were designed to copy human beings in every way. They were designed to learn from interaction, similar to how a child learns. The designers also think that over a certain period of time they'll start to develop emotions like hate, fear, sadness, or anger. Even love. So they built in a fail-safe device."

"Which is what?" Brian asks.

"A four year life span," Jim says.

Brian grimaced. "Four years," he repeats.

"Uh-huh," Jim confirms.

"Well it's no wonder they're so bloody mad," Brian says. "So how am I going to administer the VK test on them if they've by chance already learned human emotions?"

"This is a hunt and kill mission, you won't need the test," Jim explains.

Brian sighed in exasperation and ran a hand over his face. "Jim, I need to know if it'll be a replicant, not the actual lookalike human."

"It shouldn't be a problem," Jim says. "The lookalikes to these replicants were modeled after humans who were around in the twentieth century who've long since been dead so you won't have to worry about accidentally retiring the real one."

"Any other advice?"

Jim gave Brian a half smile. "That's about all the advice I can give you, Bri."

Brian rolled his eyes. Perfect...

"Now there's a NEXUS 39 demo over at Freestone Enterprises. I want you to go there and administer the test on it."

"And what if the test doesn't work on it?" Brian asks, looking over at the Captain.

Looking unsure of himself, Jim looked away and didn't respond, and Brian figured out the answer. If the test didn't work, then they would all be in deep shit...

Chapter Text

After studying the interview between Gwilym and Prenter, and gather other information, the curly haired musician and Straker headed off to Freestone Enterprises while the late afternoon sun began to lower behind the mountains. As if he hadn't seen sunlight in so long due to the high buildings that surrounded the skies of the city, Brian couldn't help but be in awe of the sight before him as the Spinner neared the offices of Freestone Enterprises within the hills of Palo Alto. The structure of the building was like the great pyramids but much bigger and despite all the wars, it still stood after being built over a hundred years ago, and they still looked the same as they did the last time Brian had come here.

Once the Spinner eventually landed on the roof's helipad, Brian was met with a young female assistant who escorted him through one half of the giant building to an area he had never been to before, and when they reached an elevator, she left him from there with instructions to go all the way to the top floor.

Taking the elevator, it took him to the top, and when the doors finally opened, it was a large open room with a dozen marble columns that extended all the way to the high intricate patterned ceiling. The large room had a highly polished black marble floor which reflected the sun that shined through a wide floor to ceiling window, and although it was dimmed in the tinted window, it was magnified by the smog choked atmosphere of the California sky. 

Brian walked across the room from the elevator to look at the incredible view, to where a large black mahogany desk sat, his footsteps echoing off the floor and walls as he walked. At the window, his attention was taken by the vast view of the rolling hills of Palo Alto with the far off view of San Francisco. 

As he continued to gaze out the window, the sound of fluttering to his left averted his attention, and looking over to the source of the sound, he was met with an eerie, but at the same time beautiful sight of a large white bird sitting on it's perch. It moved it's head in Brian's direction, the low light making the creature's retina shine in a unique and eerie manner. The curly haired musician stared at it, transfixed by it's beauty, and watched it's black pupils expand and contract as it blinked and stared back, perhaps curious by the stranger in the room.

"Do you like our owl?" a woman's voice asks.

Brian turned to the source of the voice, noticing a light across the large room back by the elevator. Against the black surface of the doors stood what looked to be a young woman dressed in a long sleeved black dress that stopped at the knees. She almost seemed camouflaged against the black background.

"Is it an owl?" Brian asks, looking back at the white majestic creature on it's perch.

"Yes," she says as she approaches him. "What did you think it was?"

"I wasn't sure," Brian says to her. "I've never seen one in person before, only in the old movies and photographs. Is it real?"

"Of course not."

"It must be very expensive," Brian says softly, his gaze still on the owl.

"Very," the young woman says in a flat tone of voice.

Brian turned to face her. She was indeed very young, maybe early to mid twenties, and beautiful with pale skin, a small mouth, straight nose, rounded cheekbones, and blue eyes. She had a mass of dark brown hair piled high in an elegant chignon upon her head with not one strand of hair out of place.

"I'm Chrissie, Dr. Freestone's personal assistant," she says. "You are Mr. May?"

Brian smiled warmly and nodded, taking notice of a British accent in her voice. "Please, call me Brian."

Chrissie held out a small and delicate looking hand to him and they shook. His hand was huge in comparison to hers, and calloused as well from years of playing guitar.

She turned away from Brian, walking a few paces away from him before turning back to face the curly haired man. "So it seems your police department doesn't believe our new unit is for the public's benefit," she states, getting straight to the point.

Brian thought it would be better to be polite and didn't want to appear rude in defending a police department that he once worked for. "Well actually, replicants are like any other machine making them either a benefit or a hazard. When they become a benefit, it's no longer my problem."

Chrissie gave a small discreet nod. "I understand what you mean," she says. "May I ask you a personal question?"

"Sure," he says as he takes a seat at the black mahogany desk.

"Have you ever retired a human by mistake?" she asks.

Surprised by her question, Brian blinked as he hesitated. "No...of course not."

"But how do you really know?" she asks. "Surely in your line of work it is a risk." 

"Is this to be one of those empathy tests?" a male voice asks. "The capillary dilation of what they call a blush response? Fluctuation of the pupil? Involuntary dilation of the iris?"

Brian turned to see a man dressed in a pristine tailored tuxedo, complete with a red bow tie and looked as though he had just come from a extravagant dinner party. He was lean, dark haired, and appeared to be in his mid thirties with a mustache and a friendly face. 

"We call it Voight-Kampff," Brian says, answering his questions.

"Ah yes indeed," he says with a smile as he holds his hand out to Brian. "I'm Dr. Peter Freestone."

Brian smiled and shook his hand. "Brian May. It's an honor to finally meet you."

"Likewise," Dr. Freestone says with a nod. "Anyway, you're here to do a demonstration with the new machine? I'm fascinated to see how it works."

"Yes, I was told there would be a subject to test," Brian says. "Is the subject here?"

"I would like to see it work on a person," Dr. Freestone says. "I want to see a negative before I provide you with a positive."

"Would you like to go first then?" Brian asks him.

"Oh no," he says, and stepping back, he indicates Chrissie. "Try her."

Brian looked at the young woman who's eyes were cast downward as if shy, and he suddenly realized that she had been looking at the floor during the time he and Freestone were talking. At the mention of her name, Chrissie looked up and made eye contact with curly haired musician, and for a brief moment he found her to be very attractive and drawn to her.

He looked at the low lying sun casting through the window. "It's too bright in here."

"Ah, here, let's try this," Dr. Freestone says as he moves to the other end of the table and hits a button.

The window immediately darkened, giving the room a polaroid effect. While Chrissie took a seat on the other side of the table, Brian set up the Voight-Kampff machine.

"Mr. May, do you mind if I smoke?" Chrissie asks.

"Go ahead, it won't effect the test," he says as he finishes setting up the machine. "Ok now I want you to relax, sit quietly, and answer my questions as simply and quickly as you can."

Brian made an adjustment to the iris dilation sensor and checked it on his screen. He noticed Chrissie's eyes were not the regular light blue but instead they were slightly darker. In the center of her right eye he could see a small, almost unnoticeable yellow glow. Thinking it might be due to the sunlight that was still filtering into the room with a soft glow, he began the test.

"It's your birthday and someone gives you calfskin wallet--" 

"I wouldn't accept something like that," Chrissie interrupts. "And I would report the person who gave it to me to the police."

Brian watched the gauge react to her response and made a note on what the data showed him, then moved on to the next question.

"You've got a little boy. He shows you his collection of butterflies, plus the killing jar."

Chrissie took a drag of her cigarette. "I'd take him to a doctor."

The machine beeped and Brian took note of the slight expansion of Chrissie's pupil.

"You're watching the news on the telly when suddenly you look down and see a wasp crawling on your arm."

"I'd kill it," she answers quickly in a bold tone of voice.

Brian looked up at her from the machine noticing her face held no emotion to the question. Making a note on that, he moved on.

"You're reading a magazine and come across a full page photo of a nude woman."

"Is this to test whether I'm a replicant or a lesbian, Mr. May?" she asks.

Brian looked up from the screen to see one of her eyebrows raised quizzically at him. "Please just answer the question. The woman is laying on a bearskin rug. You show it to your husband. He likes it so much that he hangs it on your bedroom wall above your bed. What do you say to him?"

"I certainly wouldn't let him," she says.

"Why not?" Brian asks.

"It's quite obvious I should be enough for him," Chrissie answers.

Keeping his eyes on the screen, Brian held back a grin as he continued the test which went on for the next half hour.

"Ok, last question," Brian says. "You're watching a famous stage play. A banquet is in progress with the guests enjoying an appetizer of raw oysters..."

He paused and awaited her response, watching as the needle on the reading swung forward once and went back.

"Being hungry yourself you find out that the entree they are serving is boiled dog." (A/N: I looked up boiled dog and regretted it immediately.)

Chrissie didn't respond and Brian looked up at her to see that her eyes were cast down. She looked nervous and she licked her lips and glanced back up at Brian as if she about to speak, but still she said nothing. He sat back in his chair and waited patiently for an answer.

"Would you step out for a few moments, Chrissie," Dr. Freestone says to her.

The young woman rose from her chair and made her way to the set of discreet doors back by the elevator, and as her footsteps faded, Brian turned to Dr. Freestone.

"She's a replicant isn't she?" he asks.

"I'm impressed," Freestone says. "How many questions have to be asked before spotting one?"

"Dr. Freestone--"

"How many questions?" Freestone repeats.

Brian shrugged. "Twenty to thirty, maybe more, sometimes less."

"That's interesting considering you asked Chrissie more than a hundred."

"Does she not know?" Brian asks.

"She's beginning to suspect--"

Brian furrowed his brow. "Suspect? How can it not bloody know what it is? How can it not be aware that it's not human?"

"Why should it be aware?" Dr. Freestone asks. "Is she not the most beautiful creation you've ever seen? And besides does knowing what we are really help us at all, Mr. May? Knowing we are just results of sperm and eggs that must wait for puberty and eventually mate while everything else around us keeps us entertained and distracted. How exactly does that knowledge help you? With Chrissie she could be the key to the next level of the NEXUS series."

Brian shifted in his chair and pondered on this information.

"My point being, Mr May, is commerce," Dr. Freestone continues. "Commerce is our number one goal here at Freestone Enterprises. 'More Human Than Human' is our motto. Why is that you ask? Well would you prefer us humans to return to slavery, to be sent to the outer systems against our will and work without rest? That is what they do for us. They are needed on the hazardous planets and outer colonies because the conditions are much too harsh for us. Do you understand that?"

The curly haired musician nodded.

"Chrissie is simply an experiment...nothing more," Dr. Freestone says. "In our earliest creations we came to recognize a strange obsession in them because after all they are emotionally inexperienced and only have so few years to store up the experiences that we as humans take for granted. So we tried another experiment by gifting them a past to provide them comfort for their developing emotions that we usually get from our past such as childhood, our teens years and early adult years."

"Memories," Brian says. "So you're giving them memories?"

Dr. Freestone smiled in what finally seemed forever. "Correct, Mr. May."

Chapter Text

The meeting with Dr. Freestone ended and after Brian left he called into the precinct from the Spinner and advised Jim that he'd follow up on the lead on Prenter. The address of the place he was living at was provided by Prenter's job application given to Freestone Enterprises at the time he was a new hire, which was in San Francisco. Hoping it was a legit address, Brian and Straker headed off.  

By the time they arrived, a heavy rain began to fall over the city, which as a result of the last war that caused weather patterns in the atmosphere to change, the city along with almost all of California got a lot of rain, every night.

The address to their destination was a very old and run down building, built before the last two  wars, on the corner of Haight and Ashbury. What use to be a thriving area in this part of the city was now underpopulated, poorly lit, and crime ridden. 

At the front desk Straker immediately showed his badge and requested to be shown Prenter's room to which the landlord obeyed and escorted them all the way to the top floor. Entering the tiny apartment, Straker went into the main room while Brian checked the bathroom. Keeping the bathroom light off, he took out his flashlight, switching from white light to black light just in case he would happen to find something. As he swept the light over the bathtub, something in the drain caught his attention.

Brian leaned down towards the tub to get a closer look, then reaching out he picked it up, holding it on his index finger. It looked like a fish scale. Putting it into a mini plastic evidence bag, he continued to look around to search for anything else, but finding nothing he gave up and went back into the main where Straker was currently at, making a small origami figure out of paper.

"Find anything?" Brian asks.

Straker shook his head and placed the figure on the dresser. "Niente, amigo. Just this." He handed Brian a pile of Polaroid print-outs. "Found 'em in one of the dresser drawers. Everything else looks like it's been cleaned and cleared out."

Brian shuffled through the photographs which were mainly family portraits, some even daguerreotypes, and pictures of Prenter that he assumed were supposed to be him as a little boy, only he had never been a boy.  

"That's odd, I wonder why he would leave these behind," Brian says.

Straker shrugged.

"Or perhaps maybe he knows they're fake hence the reason why these replicants are trying to get to Freestone," Brian says, suddenly realizing. "They must know their pasts aren't real, that they're not real, which means they're beginning to learn..."

*****

Prenter stood outside his apartment building looking up at the window, noticing the two men inside his room. Policemen. He had come back to get his photos but seeing now it was too late, he had to get out of there, and fast. Heading off in the other direction, he made his way to a more populated area, back to a phone booth where he'd meet up with Freddie who was already inside waiting for him.

Upon seeing Prenter approach, Freddie stepped out of the phone booth. His shoulder length silky black hair fluttered in the light breeze as the other man walked up with a sullen look on his face and avoided eye contact with the dark look on Freddie's sculptured face.

Both were dressed in semi casual clothing with Prenter wearing a red and white striped t-shirt underneath a leather jacket and a pair of jeans while Freddie wore a long sleeved white parachute jumpsuit with a pair of white clogs. A casual glance from anyone on the street would make them think they were just two regular guys which was convincing enough to make them blend in with the crowds. (A/N: The thing Freddie is wearing is supposed to be that outfit he wore at Hyde Park in '76 for like the first few songs before he magically stripped it off. What lies underneath it in this story is a surprise for the ending, hehehe.😉😁)

"Did you get your precious photos, darling?" Freddie asks him in a posh British accent that dripped with coldness.

Prenter shook his head while still avoiding eye contact. 

"Look at me when I am talking to you," Freddie demands.

Prenter looked up and met Freddie's dark chilling gaze. "No, someone...somebody was there."

Freddie's mouth set into a hard line. "Men?" he growls. "Stupid little policemen?"

"Yes, it did appear to be the police," Prenter says.

The dark haired man stared for a moment until finally he motioned for Prenter to follow him, and they made their way down the street. A group of bicyclists rode by as the two men finally approached a storefront with a nameplate on the entrance door that read JIM HUTTON.

Inside the building it was an icy laboratory that specialized in eyes. Nothing else. The two walked in to see Jim Hutton wearing a fur hat and a heavy insulated fur coat. His mustache was covered in light frost and his breath steamed in the below zero temperature of the laboratory. 

Upon hearing someone entering his lab, he looked over and jumped at the sight of the two intruders who, despite their lack of warm clothing, didn't seem at all bothered by the extreme cold even with the long haired stranger who had frost gathering on his hair.

"Oi just what in God's name are you bloody doing in here?!" he shouts at them.

"We have some questions, my dear," Freddie says to him. "And you are going to answer every single one of them. Is that clear?"

"Fuck off before I contact the authorities!" Jim threatens.

Freddie gave him a chilling smile, showing off his large front teeth and watched as Prenter snuck up behind Jim and easily tore off his fur coat in just one motion. 

"Oi!" Jim protests as he immediately begins to shiver. "What's this all about?!"

"Morphology, longevity, incept dates," Freddie says to him.

"P-Please, I-I-I don't know anything about t-that," Jim says as he wraps his arms around himself. 

"What is the life span of a NEXUS 39?" Freddie demands. "When were we created? How do we die?"

"I-I-I don't know m-mate!" Jim shouts, his teeth chattering. "All I d-do is g-genetic d-design on eyes--" He pauses, staring straight into Freddie's eyes. "S-So you're a NEXUS? I d-designed your eyes. I knew I recognized them."

"My darling Jim, if only you could see what I've seen with your eyes," Freddie says in a softer tone of voice. "Now answer my questions."

"I-I-I don't have a-any answers, just p-please give...give me my c-coat back," Jim says.

Freddie glared at him. "Who has the answers then?"

"F-Freestone," he says. "He knows all."

Freddie hummed disapprovingly and placed a hand on his hip. "We've already tried him, darling. He's not an easy man to see."

By now, Jim was shivering like a leaf. He glanced at Prenter, then back at Freddie. "John c-can take you t-to him."

Freddie raised an eyebrow. "John who?"

"John...John Richard Deacon," Jim tells him in a weak sounding voice as he looks down at the floor.

Freddie walked up to Jim and grasped at his chin, forcing him to look into his dark eyes. "And where would we find this John Richard Deacon?"

Jim's eyes widened as he briefly glanced down at Freddie's exposed chest peeking out from the jumpsuit, his dark chest hair covered in frost. "B-Bradbury Apartments...s-sector six..."

The dark haired man smiled, and pulling Jim towards him, he placed a kiss on his lips which were beginning to turn blue from the cold. "Thank you, darling. That wasn't so hard now was it?"

At a loss for words, Jim blinked at him confusion as Freddie let go of him and Prenter threw his fur coat in his direction, then turning, the two men left the lab.

Chapter Text

Finding nothing else at Prenter's apartment, Straker flew Brian back to Chinatown where his own car had been left. Tired, exhausted, and wanting to strum on his Red Special, he drove back home to his apartment block in the heavy rain.

The place where Brian had called home for the last ten years since moving from London due to the war that had killed thousands and destroyed the economy in the UK, was a large mansion in the center of the city that had been remodeled and converted into an apartment complex. The eight hundred room building, complete with underground parking, was surrounded by a high security fence that surrounded the entirety of the property.

Stopping at the iron gate, he punched in his access number. The gate creaked open and Brian slowly drove around the complex and down into the underground garage. Once parked he got out and headed for the elevator. He noted he was very tired and at this point he wanted to do nothing else but crawl into his bed and go to sleep.

"Voice print identification and floor number, please," the elevator's security system drones out. 

"May, ninety-seven," Brian says.

"May, ninety-seven," it repeats. "Thank you. Danke."

"Danke to you as well, mate," he says back with a yawn as he leans against the elevator wall and closes his eyes.

The elevator slowly rose upwards and a vision of Chrissie being in there with him, wearing a big fur coat, entered his mind. Suddenly as the door slid open to his floor with the robotic voice telling him he arrived, Brian's eyes shot open, and in one quick movement, he whipped out his blaster from the pocket of his coat and trained it into the dark corner of the elevator where Chrissie was hiding. She stared up at him, not even flinching at the weapon being pointed at her.

He put his blaster back into his coat. "Bloody hell, are you mad?" Brian mumbles, heading out into the hall.

"I wanted to see you," she says to him as she follows him out. "So I waited."

Brian scoffed and shook his head as he searched his pockets for his access card to his apartment. "You're damn bloody lucky I didn't shoot you just now. How on Earth did you get into the building?"

Chrissie spoke, her voice matching Brian's soft spoken accent. So she had used his voice to get into the building which surprised him a bit.

"So why are you here?" he asks. Where's that damn access card?

"I don't know why Freestone told you what he did," she says.

Finally locating his access card, he slid it into the mechanism on the door and opened it. "Look I'm tired and just want to go to bed. Talk to Freestone about it."

"He refused to see me!" she exclaims behind the closed door.

Brian paused in locking the door. Feeling guilty he sighed. Thunder rolled through the sky in the distance which made him feel bad if she had to go back out into the rain. Turning the knob, he opened the door back up and silently gestured for Chrissie to come in. Stepping inside, she closed the door behind her and followed Brian into the living room where he took his raincoat off and slung it over a rocking chair.

"Would you like something to drink?" he asks as he clears some stuff off the couch.

She looked around the large room before finally looking at Brian. "You think I'm a replicant, don't you?"

He chuckled while continuing to clean things. "I don't think. I know you are."

"Here, take a look at this," she says behind him.

Brian turned to see her holding out a photograph for him to look at.

"It's a photo of my mum and me when I was a little girl," she says. "She raised me as a single mum in the UK just before the war and then we moved here. She died of cancer a couple years ago."

Crossing his arms over his chest, he sat down on the couch and raised an eyebrow at her. "Oh yeah? You remember that rose bush outside your bedroom window with the spider in it?"

Chrissie just stared at him so he continued.

"You watched her build a web all summer long until one day there was a big egg in it..."

"The egg hatched," Chrissie adds in. "And a million baby spiders came out...and they ate her."

Brian shook his curly head and laughed. "Look love, I don't know who you're trying to fool here, but it's not real. Your family and your memories aren't real. It's all implants."

Chrissie blinked at him and cast her eyes down at the photo in her hand that began to shake slightly, and Brian watched as her blue eyes became glassy with...tears?

The grin on his face subsided and he stood up while silently berating himself for saying such mean things. "I'm sorry, bad joke. I made a bad joke and I apologize. You're not a replicant."

Chrissie's bottom lip quivered as she gasped and the tears began to fall.

Brian, you wanker. "Shit, I'm sorry...really I am," he says as he awkwardly places an arm around her back in a comforting gesture. "Don't cry, please."

She looked up into his hazel eyes as the tears continued to spill down her beautiful face. She looked genuinely hurt which made Brian feel even more guilty since he had never seen a replicant cry before. He wasn't exactly sure what he had to do in a situation like this so he thought up the best thing which was offer a drink.

He sighed and removed his arm from her back. "You want something to drink? Tea? Moët & Chandon?"

She continued to look up at him as she sniffled, tears rolling down her face. For a moment he thought about wiping her tears away and wondered if her skin was soft but he kept his distance. 

Backing away while keeping his eyes on her, Brian quickly strolled into the adjoining kitchen and grabbed two glass cups from the cupboard and located the half empty bottle of the Moët & Chandon in the fridge. He looked into the living room as he poured the champagne into one of the glasses and saw that Chrissie was still standing in the same spot with her back towards him, silhouetted against the bright lights outside the window of a passing helicopter. She turned to face him for a moment, then turned, and quickly headed for the door.

Drink in hand, Brian stood in the doorway of the kitchen and stared around the living room, relieved that Chrissie was gone but also quite disappointed by her absence. On the coffee table, he noticed the picture she had left. He went over and picked it up, seeing that it was a little girl with her mother. Turning it over, he saw that a number had been scrawled out on the back of it.

Retrieving the stack of photos that Prenter had left behind from his trench coat pocket, Brian headed to the sliding glass door that lead to his balcony. As he sat down in one of the chairs, a police Spinner flew by, it's emergency blue and red lights illuminating the dark streets. Sipping his drink, he stared at the photo that Chrissie left and began to wonder why she had come to him, why did he feel so bad for upsetting her, and why did he find her so attractive? 

Thunder rolling in the distance as the sound of a police Spinner wailed a few blocks away, he sat back in his chair with a heavy sigh, the rain matching his blues.

Chapter Text

 

The heels of his stiletto ankle boots click clacked against the concrete as he walked past rows of abandoned buildings along the dirty trashed filled street in the rain. Overhead in the distance, the Off World blimp floated by, the announcement droning on about new life in the outer colonies. 

Roger, or as he liked to go by in the clubs where he worked, Rainbow was a male pleasure model who looked to be in his mid twenties. His hair, which was wet from the rain and clung to his face and neck, was long and blonde. Around his neck was a silver choker. He wore very little makeup since his skin was pale but on this occasion, he had dark mascara around his eyes and a light shade of pink eye-shadow which if given a certain expression, would bring out the baby blue color in his eyes.

He was dressed in a long sleeved, off the shoulder sheer black crop top, a low-cut mini skirt, and black fishnet stockings which were held up by a garter belt, leaving about three to four inches of bare skin between the hem of the skirt and the top of the stockings. Being as thin as he was, one would say he pulled off the outfit quite well despite his appearance of looking sickly.

A large knapsack hung from his shoulder, bouncing off his hip as he walked. Rounding a corner, Roger suddenly came upon a stone canopy of a large building. Relief flooded through him as he saw it as a chance to get out from under the cold November rain to try and figure out where he was at since he had been walking around for what felt like hours to the point where he was beginning to feel tired and his feet were starting to hurt in the high heels he was wearing.

Finding a secluded spot by a pair of garbage cans, Roger hunkered down into the trash pile of crumpled newspapers for warmth. He closed his eyes and let himself drift off but a few moments later the sound of keys dropping in front of him caused his eyes to shoot open and it was then that he came face to face with a young stranger who had long brown hair, greyish green eyes and a long nose. 

Roger shrieked in surprise and quickly scrambled to his feet, bumping into the stranger and knocking him over as he ran and skidded on the wet ground into the side of a parked truck where his shoulder slammed into the passenger side window.

"Hey there, wait!" the stranger calls out to Roger in a distinctive British accent.

His eyes wide, Roger turned and looked back at the stranger standing up off the ground with his dropped knapsack in his hand.

"Young lady, you dropped your bag," he says.

At being called a lady, Roger frowned, warily approaching the young stranger as he quickly snatched his knapsack from him. "I'm not a lady, thank you very much," he says in a raspy British accented voice that dripped with annoyance.

The stranger blinked and looked over Roger's appearance, his cheeks reddening as he realized his mistake. "Oh...sorry to have offended you," he says in a tiny voice.

"It's alright, I get mistaken for a girl all the time," Roger says to him. "I'm a drag performer."

The long haired stranger nodded and they stood in awkward silence looking at each other for a few moments. He then glanced down at the stilettos, noting that the blonde haired man was a couple inches taller than him. 

"So uh...what were you doing hiding in all this rubbish out here?" the stranger asks, motioning towards the trash cans.

Roger nervously rubbed the back of his neck. "I'm lost and a bit tired, and I just needed to get out of the rain for the night. I'm not familiar with this part of the city so I just wanted to keep warm until morning time when the rain lets up."

"What's your name?" the stranger asks him.

"Roger. Roger Taylor."

"My name is John Richard Deacon," the young man says with a smile, holding out a hand.

Roger smiled for a moment and briefly shook his hand. "Hi."

"Hi," he says back. "Were you heading home? I could give you a lift."

Roger shrugged and said nothing. John backed away a bit and was just about to unlock the door of the building when Roger decided to break the awkwardness that hung in the air.

"We spooked each other pretty good, didn't we?" he says with a grin.

John giggled, showing off the gap in his front teeth. "We sure did."

Roger reflected the giggle which was cut short by a noticeable shiver as he looked down at the ground.

John took notice of Roger's soaked hair and clothes. "If you've got nowhere to go, would you like to come inside for a cuppa tea and something to eat? It's quite frigid out and you might end up catching something."

Roger smiled. "Tea does sound nice and I am hungry."

John smiled back and turned around to open the door, and the smile on Roger's face immediately disappeared, turning into a neutral expression that bordered on almost hostile. He followed the younger man into the main entrance hall of the apartment building where it was dark and appeared to be raining inside due to the roof of the foyer missing the glass paneling.

"My apartment is the only place with lights," John says over his shoulder as they reach an elevator.

Roger followed him into the clunky express box. "So do you live here all by yourself?"

The younger man nodded as the elevator slowly rose to the top floor. "Yes."

Roger spotted the glint of a ring on his finger. "Married?"

"Was," John says with a sad look. "She died last year."

"Oh," Roger mumbles, mirroring the younger man's look. "It must get real lonely around here then, huh?"

"Mmm...not really," John replies as the elevator came to a stop at his floor. "I make friends...well actually they're animatronic toys that I invented. It's this hobby I do for my work as a genetic designer Y'know what that is?"

Roger shook his head as he followed John down the end of the wet and dirty corridor to his apartment, to a set of double doors. John opened the doors with his set of keys and Roger warily stepped inside behind him.

"Hey-o, home again!" John calls out to no one, his voice echoing off the walls of the large open room.

The younger man shut the door behind them, and while sliding a series of deadbolts to lock up, Roger looked around. The main hallway of John's apartment was large and almost completely bare except for a large crystal chandelier that hung down from the Victorian intricate patterned high ceiling.

John took notice of Roger looking around and smiled to the expression on his face. "Like it?" he asks.

Roger nodded. "It's beautiful."

"All the rooms are like this in the building," the younger man says. "Large with high ceilings but falling to pieces, y'know."

The sudden sound of bells jingling in the next room caught Roger's attention, and looking over, he watched as two figures slowly marched shoulder to shoulder through the doorway and into the main entry hall before coming to a halt just mere feet in front of the two men. One was a stunted dwarf figure with a long white nose, the tip of it painted red, and was dressed in a brown uniform in the style of a war General and a spiked helmet from the old German army. The other figure was large teddy bear in a blue uniform covered in medals with a matching colored Napoleon style hat. 

"Home again, home again, jiggidy-jig," they say in unison. "Good evening Deaky."

John smiled down at them. "Evening fellas," he says to them. "Did you guys have a good day?"

They both nodded at the same time.

"That's Kaiser on the left," John says to Roger. "And Colonel Fuzzy on the right."

"Hello," Roger says to them.

"Hello friend," they reply in unison.

The teddy wheeled around and marched back into the next room. Kaiser followed behind, and as it neared the entryway to the other room, it bumped into the door frame and made a squeaking sound before continuing on it's way.

John giggled and took off his jacket. "He does that all the time, it's kind of funny. 

"They called you Deaky," Roger observes.

"Oh yeah, it's a nickname they invented for me," John says. "I don't mind it. So where is your family?"

"I'm kind of an orphan," Roger replies. 

"Oh...any friends?"

"I have some but I have to find them," Roger says. "We sort of split and that's how I got lost."

"Ah, I see," John says in a quiet voice. "Come on in. I'll get you something to wear so you can get out of those wet clothes."

The young man ushered Roger into the next room and down another hallway to a large bathroom. He handed him a towel from a shelf then scurried from the bathroom to retrieve a t-shirt and a pair of sweatpants from his wardrobe.

"These should do for now--"

John stopped mid sentence as he re-entered the bathroom, and he blushed deeply to seeing Roger without a shirt on. He had also taken off his skirt and fishnets, and was standing in the middle of the bathroom in just the garter belt and a pair white lacy panties.

"Umm...here I b-brought you something to wear," he says, handing the clean dry clothes over while trying his best to avoid staring. "I'll throw your wet clothes in the dryer for you."

Roger smiled. "Thank you, Deaky."

John looked up into Roger's blue eyes and smiled back at him. "You're welcome, Roger. I'll leave you to get cleaned up now and then I'll make that tea."

Scooping up Roger's pile of wet clothes, John turned and left, closing the door behind him. When the door clicked shut, the smile on Roger's face dissolved again into that same hostile look, which now bordered on evil.