A little after Jay went to sleep, I got a lock on an old friend. North Ashland Street, huh? I flew towards that signal, before the sun came up, posthaste. I crashed through the wall that separated me from heroism. Inside, there was a guy, a white, rugged, dirty guy with these blacker than black gauntlets on his hands. He was bound to a table with these saws slowly creeping on his hands, just waiting to saw him in half.
"Duke!" I yelled as I ran over to his aide.
"Zax?" He responded in surprise.
"Hold on." I stood behind him and pressed both of my hands on top of the saws, crushing them. I pulled the shackles that held him to the table off of him and helped him to his feet. With those gauntlets, he rubbed his wrists. He's taller than me and just as buff. I mean, you could grind meat off of our abs. You can shred cheese off of them. Anyway, with his dirty beard, dirty blonde hair that covered his face, he held out his hand. I smacked it away; the cold, hard steel gauntlets resonated as I did so.
"Okay, fine then." He said as he turned around to a group of thugs. Just as I was about to handle them, he held his arm out, signaling me that he has this. "I got this." He said. "Freeze!" The one in the front yelled. Duke held his hands up. What the hell is he doing? Now I have to step in and do it right. As I was about to step in front of him, he slammed his hands to the ground, causing what felt like the entire establishment to shake and stir like we were in the middle of an earthquake. Soon, he slammed his hands together and rubbed them together really fast, causing these bad ass thunderclouds on the side of his gauntlets to light up.
"Prepare for the thunderclap." Duke said as he clapped. A wave of thunder and lightning struck the guards blocking our way. They started to shake like an epileptic at a disco party and were blown into each other as if a hurricane was coming. They all slid across the floor and into the wall, knocked unconscious. Duke smiled and said, "Thunderclap all day." He pounded his fist together and looked back at me. I laughed. That always got me. "See, there's the smile we all need." He said. "How did you find me?" Duke asked me.
"I have my ways."
"You mean my cave?" He said. "Yeah, it has many ways of finding me. But you already know what my answer is." He began to walk away, but I heard sirens and a police scanner that mentioned this location. I grabbed his shoulder and super sped somewhere we could be safe. And there's only one place we can. Foster Beach. Duke snatched away from me. "I hate it when you do that."
"Duke, why won't you help me save the world?"
"Because the world doesn't want us." He replied. "And why should we when all we'll do is get imprisoned for doing what's right?"
"You know the answer to that, Duke. And they may not want us, but they need us!" Duke rolled his eye, smiled, and turned his back to me. "They do! You saw all the bad that's happened! The Newtown shooting! 9/11! Duke, we could've stopped that. But no. You were too busy with your head being stuck up your ass to see what's really going on." He quickly turned to me and there was a fire in his eyes. "What?" I said, ready and willing. "You want to fight me?"
"Zax, don't pretend that you're doing this for righteous reason, you musclebound dick head." That stung. It really did. "You're doing this only because he is." He didn't have to say who "he" was. We both knew who he was. "Get over yourself, Zax. He's not real. He's a fictional character."
"He may be a fictional character, but at least he made me what I am today. A hero to everyone who needs it. An ally to the good and a nightmare to the evil. A protector, Duke. This is more than what I can say for you." Duke frowned and suddenly clouds started to gather and thunder and lightning shook and lit up the skies respectively.
"Zax, listen to yourself! You're letting what little intelligence you have get clouded by some antiquated sense of heroics. In case you haven't noticed, they're forcing us into hiding because we're too 'dangerous'! The only dangerous thing we have ever done, to them, was be born! Of course there will be collateral damage, of course people will die, but we tried our best to prevent that, but our best wasn't good enough. So the wars happened and more people died. Good people. Our family and friends, Jason! Are you seriously telling me that they're worth protecting? Because if they are, you're just as misguided as I thought!" Lightning struck near him as he yelled.
I sighed. "You know what, David? I'm so sick of this. You don't want to help, fine! But when that day comes when that bad guy army gets here and Arcana is with them, who's to say that she'll survive?" That hit a soft spot. Duke looked at the ground for a brief moment before he punched me in the jaw with his gauntlets, sending me spinning into a nearby sand dune. I walked out of the sand dune and saw that his gauntlets were glowing. Not a good sign. I super sped and pushed him, his feet dragging through the sand as he crashed into a lifeguard tower. It was reduced to splinters as he burst out of the wreckage. "Duke, I'm not going to fight you. But I'll tell you this. You don't have to help if you don't want to. But if you get in my way, I will have to fight you."
"I know." He replied. "I'll be waiting." Lightning struck Duke and he was gone. The sand beneath his feet was scorched and formed into mini diamonds. The wreckage caught fire. I didn't put it out. Instead, I sighed loudly and took flight back towards the cave. He's doing this for her. I don't like it. I need to have a talk with a certain prisoner.