That bandicoot was proving himself to be nothing but a furry thorn in his side.
Dr. Neo Cortex pushed his slender fingers further into his temples in a vain attempt to coax the dawning headache away; why was this dim-witted marsupial causing him so many problems? His plan had been admittedly botched together at the last minute, but all had been going well until she stepped into the picture.
He could curse himself for "creating" Crash Bandicoot and his younger sister, both in which proved to be his worst failures in life.
"Dr. Cortex," Behind him, the bionic voice of his new apprentice chimed above the whir of the space station. New apprentice- Neo could have laughed at that thought if times weren't so grim; the only reason he had taken the dumpy Irish man under his wing was because of the new challenge he had unintentionally given him to work with. Neo turned on his heel from the large window to face N. Gin, viewing the bionic life support that clung to the man's head smugly, If it hadn't been for me, he would have died from his own mistake.
Shifting under the gaze of his superior, N. Gin waved his hand towards the Master Crystal hovering to his left, "The Bandicoot is aware of most, if not all, of our plans, sir. How are we-"
Dr. Cortex cut his words in two, "Do you not think I know of the situation?!" Pinching his brows together, he murmured, "Now, what do you need to tell me? Speak quickly, otherwise I may lose my temper."
"H-how do you wish to proceed with the mission?" Bumbling words fell haphazardly into the room, and the cyborg engineer cringed. He waited for bitter words, curses, or even dismissal into the abyss of space...
Instead, he was greeted with a sick smirk, ivory teeth conflicting with the the dark demeanor of their owner. Neo's mind was churning at mechanical speeds, something he had always prided himself of being able to do. "I will confront him on his way to furnish gems to that turncoat, Nitris Brio. Can you intercept his warp path?"
A mutual grin stretched across the still-intact mortal side of N. Gin's face, "But of course, sir. It can be done in a matter of minutes."
"Good. Alert me when Crash has obtained all twenty-five Slave Crystals," Dr. Cortex turned to the stars once more, hearing N. Gin's obedient intone before silence fell between the two once more.
It was silence such as this that allowed Neo to think, not that he necessarily shunned the process. However, things that his highbrow brain preferred to fathom on during times like this caused a scowl to introduce itself on the face of the cynical scientist. Time that had long since passed rolled like a film before his crimson glare, and despite his best attempts, he could not blink them from existence.
Irony had a way with the aging man that proved it to be his mortal enemy, second to the vigilante marsupials, no matter what side of the morality spectrum he chose to be on. The unfolding plot before him was nothing unfamiliar, only this time, he was the one causing the havoc.
After all, he was at one time a good scientist, dedicated to helping the world and not dominating it. His colleagues had deemed him as a promising young man during those times, and saw his inventions as revolutionary. The machine in which he, along with his associate at the time, Dr. Brio, had created to further study the capabilities of primitive brains of beasts was seen as the most promising device of their careers, and was going to take them places.
However, fate proved to have a crueler path for Neo Cortex. Although he created with his own two hands for the sake of the world, he cared nothing about it; naturally self-absorbed, he had taken all of the credit for the machine he and Brio had slaved over, and utterly caused the machine to collapse upon itself when he added 'unofficial tweaks' into the mainframe of the system. His first minion was created that day, a young joey that became so manic in its new form, it was deemed the "Bastard Child of Existence", and locked away. The two were shunned by their peers and exiled along with thier failed subject after such a catastrophic failure.
The mistake did not stop Cortex, and with pure intimidation, he had coaxed Nitris to assist him on the then-unnamed project further.
That same night was when he was confronted telepathically by an aboriginal voodoo mask, ebony in color and in spirit. The being addressed himself as Uka-Uka, a shaman that was known during his time as a powerful warrior, and offered Neo an offer that seemed farfetched, but nevertheless drew him in:
Follow my commands, and the world will fall before your feet- you will bring upon a new regime, one that would be based solely upon you and no other. The world will fear Neo Cortex, and worship you as a god.
It had also been the same day he was introduced to the light counterpart to Uka-Uka, his elder brother, Aku-Aku. He inadvertently ran a vinyl-clad finger over the impression on his forehead, something in which he had loathed since the first day it was cast into his flesh. The "N" proved to be the turning point of his entire life, given to him by Aku after his warnings had fallen upon deaf ears. Angered, the witch doctor emblazoned the charcoal letter upon his skull to forever remind him of his narcissism.
That day, Neo had sworn that he would make all those, including Aku-Aku, pay for their treachery. He and Brio set upon working on their imperfect machine, one in which he named the Cortex Vortex, and his mutant army became a reality, one anthropomorphic creature at a time.
... Until Crash Bandicoot proved to be an utter failure by the system's database. He was discarded, something that Cortex thought he would never see ever again.
How wrong he had been.
"Doctor," N. Gin's voice was eager, and it startled Neo from his thoughts. "The Bandicoot has located the last crystal- I've sent him en route to the dock of this ship." With a few more quick taps upon the computer's keyboard, he continued, "The portal you have desired for us to escape in has been opened as well, but it is located a bit of a distance away from our current position. You will have to get to it by rocket pack, sir."
He grinned, "Fine by me. I want to taunt my prey before I destroy it, anyhow."
It was time for Neo to test fate once more.