The teleportation stuff wasn't so hard to work out. It was really just a parlor trick on Dr. Demented's part. Simple. I could write out a solution and it would take fewer than ten thousand pages.
But working through that little exercise proved most instructive. I learned how to teleport objects just by touching them. I sent objects around the room. After destroying some laboratory glassware, I was convinced that my power was functioning entirely within its newly improved parameters.
I didn't bother cleaning up the shattered glass. It's not as if I was in danger of cutting my indestructible feet. I instructed Noetron to clean it up if one of his robots had nothing better to do. In a room full of alien technology to reverse-engineer, that didn't seem likely.
I also ran through the data I had gathered on Dr. Demented. A thousand data points, from his flesh' response to telekinesis to the strength of his thrusters. I thought about the containment systems for all of his different weapons, from the tons of antimatter to Alexander Star's captured heart. I put it into an ever more detailed model of him. I predicted some things about how I thought he would respond to various types of stress. It was a pretty grim picture.
Should I have any confidence in my models? Easy to check. I temporarily stored away all my derived results, as well as all the data I collected on his arm's response to vibration. Then, I tried to predict the data. The set I came up with wasn't terribly far off. I repeated the process a few more times. The results were fair. My models definitely had some predictive power. And that in itself was a victory. I was beginning to understand my foe. I was making progress. Twenty-three and a half hours to go.
I thought about how I was pretty much literally committing suicide. Destroying my future self. Was there a way around it? I wondered again if there was a way to fix Dr. Demented. It seemed like there must be. But Dr. Demented had torn planets apart searching for the solution, and he hadn't found it. But I really didn't want to die.
Most of my mind wasn't thinking these morbid thoughts. Most of me was doing science, But some small part of me was hoping that there was a way for me to live.
It was a long shot. And I would need to kill the insane rampaging time-monster first. But I really didn't want to die.
You know who else didn't want to die? Carnage. Dr. Carnage had been minding his own business, trying to subjugate planet Earth, when he had been struck down in his prime. Killed by an engineer disease. How unfair. After spending years hoping to kill billions with plagues and famine, being killed by one of his own creations. The world lacked justice.
When Carnage was brought back from the dead, he saw another Mad Doctor standing over him. "Are you going to kill me?"
"Bring you to life an kill you. Silly to do."
"I would do it."
"I know. Cruel man."
"Cruel monster." Carnage licked his reptilian lips. "So why did you bring me back. What do you want me to do?"
"Anything more specific?"
"Cruel to the one who killed you."
"Cognis? The self-righteous idiot who masterminded it? Or that bitch Lucy?"
"Ooooh. Yes. She was fun! She was so afraid of my knives. So terrified of the work I would do. And she understood me. She saw the monster that I was. Appreciated me in a way nobody else could. And she was appropriately terrified." Carnage cackled. "So, when do I start?"
"Twenty two hours. If at all."
"What? Why the wait."
"To see if Pheonix stop us."
"Phoenix. Oh. Right. Him. As I recall, he was busy killing Crucible while Cognis and his merry men were killing me."
"Neither stayed dead."
"Whatever. So when Phoenix fails, do I get to torture Lucy in front of him?"
"I'll start planning now. Maybe I'll even have a rehearsal." Carnage paced across the room on dinosaur legs, his mind filled with glorious thoughts of pain and suffering. He had made the right choice. This was even better than being a dentist.