“Welcome Nicholas. How’s the baby girl that I have heard so much about?”
“She is going really well Brodie. How’s the plans for the school going?”
“Really good. We open this year. That’s why I wanted to see you. Tai is old enough to start too.”
“Really? He is fourteen. I thought he might be too old to start.”
“Fourteen is our starting age. I thought that fourteen might be too young.”
“How long does it go for?”
“Five years. Then a year field testing and then one more year of school and work.”
“What sort of field testing and work?”
“We plan to get the students out and using their abilities in real situations. Some of them will be life and death situations. It’s the best way to test how well they have done.”
“How dangerous will it be?”
“No more dangerous than the students and parents will ask. If a student says they don’t think they are safe then we will happily get them back to the school.”
“What about the work? What will that entail?”
“We all seek a career at that age. And this way they can get out and work and earn real money. On Earth it is called work experience.”
“That sounds a lot better than the field testing.”
“I agree with those that say the war is coming. We have issues with both the Maulers and the Guardians. Despite what you may have heard, the Guardians are not our allies. They want us dead more than the Maulers.”
“You think they might attack?”
“One thing I noticed when I was younger, was that the PM have a lot more potential as a race than they are showing. If Trapper can keep up with the Artificials and if Goldy can kill five of them on his own, then why are the rest of the PM so much weaker.”
“I have no idea Brodie.”
“It’s because the Artificials learnt. They were in a life and death situation at all times. They either adapt or die. Trapper and Goldy were in a similar situation. All we need to do is learn what we are capable of.”
“So you are saying that Tai could be as powerful as the Artificials?”
“Tai is younger than they were. He could be more powerful than them.”
“What about Renee? She is younger than him?”
“With a little bit of help from her family she could be the best fighter in the universe. If you want her to be that good then I will introduce you to some people who can start training her at a young age.”
“Will it be dangerous?”
“It will be so dangerous that you wouldn’t last two days. But the others will protect her and she will be safe. I have worked with these guys before. It’s quite the experience.”
“How young can she start?”
“As young as you are willing to let her go and not see her for months at a time with no way to know if she is safe.”
“Then I doubt she will ever be old enough. It’s a really nice offer Brodie but I can’t leave my daughter in the hands of strangers and have her disappear off for months.”
“That’s what the school will be like. Three months at a time then a month at home. Then back for another three months and the pattern repeats.”
“That’s different Brodie. The teachers are professionals and the school is safe.”
“The people that will train your daughter are Artificials and they will take her to safer places than a school with spoilt kids who all want to beat people up and prove how good they are.”
“You never mentioned Artificials. Are you saying that you can organize Artificials to train my daughter?”
“You are the reason I have my job. I would love to return the favor.”
“How many of them are there?”
“Callum, Liam and Troy. My old squad. They are currently on a planet at the edge of the galaxy training with Adrian and two young Artificials. Eight years old and probably stronger than you.”
“Since when are there eight year old Artificials?”
“There are four that were born naturally. The eight year old twins are pureblooded and the six and two year olds are half-breeds.”
“Will she train alongside any of the younger ones?”
“Hopefully. But their parents would have to approve of the children leaving first.”
I went home and told my family the good news. Tai had been accepted into the school and Renee was going to go train with Artificials as soon as she was older.
Two weeks later the New Year began and Tai was off to school. We wouldn’t see him again for three months.
Six years later Tai was starting his last year and had excelled at almost all of the classes. I had decided that Renee was old enough to go train with the Artificials. Brodie came to pick her up when Tai started the first holidays of the year.
“Is she ready to go?”
“I certainly hope so.”
“What are her powers?”
“Orb, but she hasn’t shown them yet. Not even a blast. I remember Tai showed his when he was four.”
“It’s ok Nicholas. She is a late developer. It happens sometimes. Even the Artificials had some. I was an early developer myself. I healed somebody within a few seconds of being created.”
“Well hopefully the Artificials help her out.”
“They will. Now you do realize that there is a large possibility of her being killed out there.”
“Yeah I do. I heard that Troy was back here after getting wounded out there.”
“Yes. He is all healed now but he doesn’t want to go back. I have convinced him to go though. He will be taking Renee with him. Unless you have changed your mind.”
I looked over at Renee who was talking to her mum. She was short for her age but Tai was too. She had orange hair that went down to her shoulder blades.
“She should be ok Brodie.”
I went over to Renee and gave her a hug. “We will see you soon sweetie. You are going away for a while to train and become the best you can be. People will tell stories about you.”
She had a cute little smile. She wasn’t really sure what was going on but I knew I was going to see her again. She was going to come back as a powerful being.
I couldn’t wait for that day.
She walked over to Brodie and they walked out the door with a wave.