Masterpost: We're All Part of a Chemical Equation
Characters/Pairing: Gerard Way/Frank Iero, Ray Toro, Bob Bryar, Mikey Way, Brendon Urie, Pete Wentz, Patrick Stump, Mark Pellegrino, Samantha Ferris, Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki, Misha Collins, Jim Beaver, Traci Dinwiddie, Robert Wisdom, Kate Cassidy, Richard Speight Jr., Alona Tal, Lauren Cohan, Chad Lindberg, Kurt Fuller, Rob Benedict, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Samantha Smith, Lindsey McKeon, Matt Cohen, James Patrick Stuart
Word Count: 3454 (this chapter), ~50K and counting for entire series.
Warnings: Frerard, slash,cursing, hurt/comfort, angst, war, violence, mentions of rape, science fiction, war, discrimination
Notes: Futuristic fic, MCR, band slash, Supernatural RPF
Disclaimer: The lovely boys (ex/current members) of My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy and Panic! At the Disco do not belong to me. Neither do the cast of Supernatural...no matter how much I want them to. Scientific information in this story is based on 50% fact and 50% imagination.
Summary: It's the year 2112. 33-year-old Professor Gerard Way is about to meet his most talented and promising student ever.
Amare et sapere vix deo conceditur
Even a god finds it hard to love and be wise at the same time
University of Mutatio (UoM), King Phillips’s Auditorium, Department of Immunology, Toronto
Monday, August 15th, Year 2112
“About a hundred years ago, our world was devastated by the Death Plague, which was propagated by the Cropiex Virus. Cropiex was first discovered in a little village in Indonesia and it began as a humble and innocent virus, establishing itself in the individual as a minor infection of the lungs.”
Twenty-two year old Frank Iero paused in the middle of his presentation, turned towards the people sitting in the auditorium and smiled. His Anima, Mattie, gave a quiet chirp of encouragement from his perch on Frank’s shoulders as he spoke again.
“The sick individual developed a high fever, severe cough and other flu-like symptoms. The virus was transmitted via air, through the miniature droplets released from the lungs of the infected individual during an innocuous cough or sneeze.”
Frank was in the process of giving a twenty minute presentation for his final year project to the rest of the Immunology department. It was just an outline of his project and what he was planning to do for the year ahead. It was a requirement for students (both undergraduate and graduate students) at the beginning of the semester, so that the professors and students of the department could share their expertise with the presenter and give advice on possible work that the individual working on the project could do.
Not too bad.
The room was three-quarters filled and considering that he was only an Honors-Year student, the turn-out rate for the presentation of his project was really quite good. However, considering the theme of his project, he wasn’t too surprised. His main supervisor, Dr. Genevieve Potter, who was seated right in the front of the room, beamed encouragingly at him. Frank grinned back at her.
A few rows back, his co-supervisor, Professor Gerard Way, dressed in a black blazer over a simple white button up shirt, black tie, and faded jeans, was sitting languidly in one of the soft, comfortable seats of the auditorium. Frank was a little startled at his presence. Sure, his project was a collaboration between the two labs belonging to Dr. Genevieve Potter and Professor Gerard Way, but the Professor was a busy and important man, and Frank really hadn’t expected him to turn up.
Professor Way smiled at him, and Frank nodded politely back, but not before a small flush rose up his neck.
“Nobody knew of its devastation back then. That it was more than just a normal flu virus.” He continued. “Gradually the virus began to spread in Indonesia. Thousands of people were infected, and the scientific community in Indonesia began to put in efforts to establishing a cure. As more and more people in the country began to be infected, other countries such as India, China and Japan began to report similar flu-like symptoms caused by this virus. The United States, Europe and the rest of the world were not spared. As the virus began to spread at increasing rates, people who were infected with the virus began to develop more severe symptoms. The virus was reported to attack the nervous system of the individual, causing people to die in extreme pain. Patients were found in grotesque positions, muscles frozen in death. Soon, there were reports of the virus having the ability to attack the immune system of the individual as well. Similar to AIDS, patients became more susceptible to diseases which were normally easier to cure.”
The screen in the front of the room showed a colored, non-moving picture of a patient lying on a hospital bed in the throes of agony as his nerves were slowly being destroyed by the virus. His eyes were pinched shut and his mouth curled into a silent scream. Next to it, there was an image of a patient suffering from Cropiex-associated Kaposi’s sarcoma. On his back were reddish, papular wart-like lesions.
Frank could tell that he had now captured the rapt attention of everyone in the room. Those who had been tapping away rudely at their Workstations at the beginning of his presentation were now giving him their full attention.
Frank tapped the silver stud earring in his right ear absent-mindedly. There was a soft whirl of noise as the miniscule black Fitch embedded in his earring projected the next slide of his presentation on the screen in front of the room.
“Then the devastating news came: Cropiex appeared to have mutated, and was able to infect animals as well. Cattle were reported to be experiencing the same flu-like symptoms, plus muscle spasms and seizures that gradually led to the death of the animals. Individuals who ate the meat of infected animals experienced severe neurological symptoms such as myeloencephalitis and brainstem encephalitis which sometimes led to pulmonary edema.”
“The next blow came when migratory birds began to appear exhibiting the same symptoms – the virus had yet again found another transmission route.”
Frank tapped the Fitch again.
“There was world-wide panic as countries tried to curb the spread of Cropiex. Indonesia was the first among many countries to close down its seaport and airport in order to try to contain the disease. The United States, Japan and Europe focused all their research efforts on the virus in a bid to find a possible cure or vaccine. Cattle were slaughtered and killed. Birds were exterminated. Many countries were reported to burn their dead in mass burials to try to curb the spread of the virus. Yet, more and more people became infected. The virus appeared to mutate faster and faster as it spread, causing more fatal and lethal symptoms. Medical centers were set up to try to care for patients with what medicine we had back then, despite the fact that we were only treating the symptoms of the disease, and delaying the imminent death of the individual. Thousands of people were dying every second. Governments collapsed. Countries began to fall. Within a year, three-quarters of the world’s population had been wiped out and we were no closer to a cure.”
“There were only 100 individuals left at the end of the Death plague. These individuals realized that they had not been left untouched by the plague – the virus had not killed them, but had left them with what we know now as Powers instead. Soon, they realized that each individual was blessed with one or more Animas, which were used as conduits through which they could channel their raw Powers. With their new Powers, these 100 individuals started the task of rebuilding our world again.”
“Then one day, one curious scientist, Jacob Fullerton, investigated his own genome, and realized that his had been rewritten. Shocked, he called upon the rest of the 99 individuals to contribute their DNA for research and he made a massive discovery. All hundred of them had been changed. Their genomes had been altered, and they no longer had the usual 46 chromosomes in each of their somatic cells. Each individual now had 50 chromosomes in each somatic cell. ”
“With that short introduction, I’ll like to move on to the objectives of my project… Establishing a SN281 infectious mouse model for the Cropiex Virus.”
Frank couldn’t stop the full blown grin that stretched across his face at the small uproar in the auditorium as the title flashed across the screen. Heads swiveled around to look at Professor Way. Frank could hear soft mutters of “So it’s true! Professor Way has accepted an Honors-Year student into his laboratory!” and other comments like “Oh my God, I’m so envious.” Genevieve looked as though she was about to start bouncing off the walls with excitement at any moment. Professor Way merely looked amused as he tapped the side of his black-rimmed glasses with a finger. He exchanged a significant look with Frank that sent an involuntary shudder up Frank’s spine.
As Frank continued to talk about his project, the audience appeared to be enraptured by his research topic. There was a level of excitement in the air, and Frank received a lot of positive responses and suggestions for what he could do to further improve his experimental set-ups.
“That was great, Frank. You did well!” Genevieve bounded up towards him when his presentation ended, exclaiming excitedly.
“Thank you Genevieve; it was all thanks to your help!” Frank’s face crinkled into a smile. His supervisor’s enthusiasm was really infectious. He knew that he was going to enjoy his time under her.
“Genevieve is right, Frank. That was a good presentation.” Frank heard a dark voice from behind him that melted his bones. He turned around to see Professor Way smiling encouragingly at him.
“Thank you for giving me a chance to do this project too, Professor Way.” Frank said shyly.
Professor Way grinned and nodded, before turning towards Genevieve.
“Shall we?” Professor Way indicated his front with a hand in a gentleman-like manner.
Genevieve nodded, and together, they turned to walk out of the auditorium. Genevieve began to talk excitedly about Frank’s project, and Professor Way was giving him more suggestions for his project. As he listened to his two supervisors, Frank’s mind suddenly drifted back to three months ago when he had first began looking for a supervisor for his final year project…
Monday, May 16th, 2112
Frank made his way towards the Immunology Building. He was on his way to his first meeting with his potential supervisor for his final year project. Every student in UoM had to approach a supervisor to take them on for a research project for a year. After much consideration, he had decided to contact Dr. Genevieve Potter and she had agreed to meet him.
Although Frank’s primary interest was in Animas, he knew that the only Professor in UoM whose main research interest was in Animas was Professor Gerard Way. Professor Gerard Way was a young, gorgeous looking Professor who was well-known and famous for his work in Animas in the scientific field. He was easily the most prominent researcher in Anima research. He was the perfect potential supervisor… with one major flaw. Professor Way was a member of the Seniorum Concilium. It was far too dangerous for Frank, and if he did indeed join Professor Way’s lab, he would be treading a thin and perilous line. In addition, he had heard that Professor Way only accepted graduate students in his lab, so Frank had given up on the idea quickly.
In the end, Frank decided to turn to Dr. Genevieve Potter instead. Dr. Genevieve Potter’s main research interest was in the Jupiter virus, a nasty virus that attacked the nervous system of infected children. Her research was focused on the use of the SN281 mouse as a model to develop potential drugs or vaccines against the virus.
“Mattie, I need you to be good today, alright? This is important to me.” Frank thought to his Anima.
Mattie let out a shrill whistle, nudging Frank sharply with his coned beak.
“Okay, Master. I’ll be good. You’ll be fine, don’t worry.”
Frank entered the building through the sliding glass doors. There was a soft beep as the security cameras at the door swiveled around to register his entrance into the building. Frank stepped up to the portal in the middle of the lobby. The portal comprised of a white rectangular stone carved out of marble. Words began to form in mid-air, hovering over the portal.
Frank Iero, Year 4, Life Science Student.
The words vanished and a new sentence formed again.
“I’m here to visit Dr. Genevieve Potter, to talk about doing a potential final year project under her.”
The marble shuddered.
Access granted to Level 3. Please place your hand on the marble.
After ensuring that Mattie was perched safely on his shoulders, Frank reached out to touch the marble.
A blink of an eye later, Frank found himself on the third level of the building. He stepped away from the portal, glancing around. There were two corridors leading away from the portal, and Frank was thrown momentarily, unsure as to which direction to head towards.
“Mattie, would you mind going down that direction to take a look?” Mattie whistled in affirmation as he shot down one of the corridors. Frank turned towards the other direction, scratching his head absent-mindedly as he pondered the lack of directional signs at the lobby. He glanced around as he walked down the corridor, feeling awkward, and very much like an intruder. Posters of students’ projects were lined along the cream-colored walls, and he felt a great desire to peruse some of them. Glancing at his watch, he realized that he was about to be late. The end of the corridor opened into another two directions. He quickened his steps as he dashed around the corner to see…
Professor Gerard Way.
Frank didn’t just see Professor Way though. He literally bumped into Professor Way, almost knocking down the poor man.
“Oh, I’m so sorry!” Frank was horrified. Professor Way stumbled, his eyes and mouth open in adorable confusion as the papers in his hands flew out of his grip. Professor Way bent down to pick up the papers and Frank also reached down to help him, stacking the scattered papers up and returning them to Professor Way.
“It’s okay,” Professor Way smiled vaguely as he looked through the papers that Frank had returned him, rearranging them, before he looked down with a kind smile at Frank. “You really shouldn’t be running around corners though, you could kill someone.” He joked.
Frank grinned at that. This was the first time that Frank talked to Professor Way, and he had always only seen Professor Way from afar. He definitely looked more gorgeous up close. Frank blushed hotly as Professor Way adjusted his black-rimmed glasses and peered down at him, his hazel eyes alight with amusement.
There was a sharp whistle of air as Mattie zoomed down the corridor. Frank instinctively raised his hand slightly as Mattie flew to land on his shoulders.
He chirped urgently.
“The offices are down the other corridor!”
“Thank you, Mattie,” Frank said to the red bird. He looked up at Professor Way, who looked intrigued by the appearance of Frank’s Anima.
“Ah, I’m sorry for knocking into you, Professor. I have to go now, I’m about to be late for a meeting with Dr. Genevieve Potter! Bye, Sir!” Frank quickly turned to walk down the other corridor, heading towards the offices and leaving behind a bemused Professor Way.
A neon-pink memo fluttered straight into Frank’s face the moment he opened the door to Dr. Genevieve Potter’s office.
Mattie chirped agitatedly as he snapped angrily at the memo. It danced out of his reach teasingly.
“Oh, I’m so sorry!” A hand grabbed the memo out of the air before Mattie could tear it into shreds. Dr. Genevieve Potter peered down at Frank as she examined his face for paper-cuts. “Are you alright? Those blasted flying memos are driving me crazy.”
Frank shook his head, his lips quirking into a smile. Dr. Genevieve Potter was a middle-aged, tall and imposing woman. She had long, blonde hair that fell to her shoulders, and thin, porcelain-like lips. Her eyes were a vivid emerald green and they were dark in concern as she examined his face closely.
“I’m sorry, there usually aren’t this many memos flying about.” She sighed. “Today’s a busy day for me.”
Frank laughed. “It’s okay, Professor. Are you that busy? Maybe we should reschedule…”
“No, no, today is fine.” Dr. Potter waved impatiently at the air as a couple of neon blue and green memos dive-bombed into her long hair. “Blasted things!” She cursed and she raised her palms and flicked a wave of Power at them. She thumbed an emerald brooch on her dress absent-mindedly as the memos flying around her room finally settled into a neat pile on her table.
“So Dr. Potter’s Anima is a brooch,” Frank noted to himself.
“Take a sit.” Dr. Potter waved at one of the Chameleon sofas in the room. Frank sat down, shifting his weight as the Chameleon sofa expanded and changed its form to accommodate his body shape for greater comfort.
“I love these sofas, they’re so comfortable.” Dr. Potter commented as she sat down in another Chameleon sofa opposite Frank’s.
Frank took a moment to look around the office. The walls were paneled with wood, and the pale yellow lightning was bright, yet comfortable at the same time. There was an expandable bookshelf in the corner of the room that could be tapped to reveal more compartments with more books. The current shelf that Dr. Potter was using contained large volumes of textbooks and what looked like teaching material. Scientific posters composing of Dr. Potter’s work hung on the walls beside the bookshelf. A large table sat in the middle of the room, currently housing the neon-coloured memos. There was a small glass screen in the middle of the table, where Dr. Potter’s Workstation was. The black sofas that they were sitting on were separate by a small coffee table.
“You have a lovely office, Dr. Potter.”
“Thank you Frank. Please call me Genevieve.”
“Sure… Genevieve.” Frank responded shyly.
“Well, before we begin… Have you any experience in laboratory work?” Genevieve asked.
“None whatsoever.” Frank answered honestly.
“Ah, not to worry, everyone has to start somewhere sometime.” Genevieve was thoughtful. She brightened as she spoke again, “Well, let’s begin by telling you what expectations I have of you as my FYP student!”
Frank listened as Genevieve laid out her expectations.
“As an Honors Student in my lab, you have to know that we do animal work, namely with mice. Are you comfortable with that idea?”
“Not really, Professor.” Frank replied fairly. “But I think I can manage. It’s for the good of Science after all.”
“Good, at least you’re honest.” Genevieve looked pleasantly surprised. “If there comes a point of time where you feel that you cannot work with animals, please let me know. We will work out something else for you to do.” She continued. “Because of the fecundity rate of mice, sometimes we cannot control when the mice are born. Our work may involve working with mice at certain ages. For example, Ray Toro, the graduate student in my lab, works on two-week-old mice. Sometimes he comes in on weekends to do experiments at certain time-points. You have to be willing to work on weekends – it’s practically unavoidable.”
“I’m fine with that as well, Professor.”
She nodded, smiling widely.
“My other expectation is that because you are an FYP student, I will expect you to do more readings. I will also expect you to ask questions whenever you do not understand something. I will expect you to be able to walk out of my laboratory and graduate from UoM with at least a basic understanding of laboratory techniques and scientific knowledge.”
Frank grinned as he nodded again. “I would want that for myself too, Professor.”
“Great, now that we have reached an understanding… Let’s talk about your future project, shall we?”
It was six o’ clock in the evening when Frank trudged out happily from Dr. Potter’s laboratory. After going through the basic outline of his project with him, Dr. Potter had introduced him to the other members of the laboratory. The lab comprised of four post-graduate students – Ray Toro, Pete Wentz, Brendon Urie, Cheryl Winters, and one lab technician, Patrick Stump. Dr. Potter passed him on into the tutelage of Ray Toro, who was a tall and very likeable individual. He had thick eyebrows, a large nose, and a wide, disarming smile that made Frank feel very welcome in his presence. Frank found Ray’s afro very cool, but Ray kept his hair tied up neatly when he worked in the laboratory. He was very patient with Frank, and had spent the rest of the day bringing him around the laboratory, imparting to Frank the rules and regulations of laboratory work, and various biosafety issues. Ray had signed him up for animal-work training on Wednesday, as Frank had to undergo training by the qualified members of the Animal Unit to obtain a license to do animal work. Ray promised to teach him cell culturing techniques tomorrow, and Frank was contented and excited about learning something new the next day.
1) Frank is 23 years old in this story (10 years younger than Gerard) but is introduced as 22 years old due to the timeline being not past his birthday yet.
2) And of course, both the Cropiex Virus or the Jupiter Virus do not exist. At least, not yet
3) Anima is Latin for soul.
4) Mattie is a red cardinal. Here's a link if you wish to see how I imagined him to look like.
(A Most Interesting Conversation)