Jamie placed the palm of his hands on the hood of the man's car, watching as the man slid himself further into his seat. Melony looked on in curiosity but she knew she'd never seen Jamie's eyes the way they were now, it was like they were filled with pure madness. Jamie's spread fingers began to curve in as paint chipped under his fingernails. He took his balled up fist off the hood and flashed the man a smile. He then lifted up the car's hood and looked for the engine block through the rust and dirt.
Placing his hands under the hood he reached in and grasped his hands around the engine block. Pulling up he watched the engine worm loose while the wires holding it in place snapped. Once the block was free he let it fall to the ground cracking the pavement with a thud. He closed the lid and smile at the man who sat motionless in his seat. Trailing his fingers along the rusted paint Jamie made his way to the driver side door. The man inside reached to the lock as the tumbler activated holding the doors from opening.
Jamie shook his head at the man while mouthing 'tsk-tsk-tsk.' He put his right hand on the top frame of the door. Pulling back the top crumbled while the rest of the door ripped off it's hinges. Letting his grip loose when his arm had stretched backwards the door was sent flying. Almost hitting a couple that didn't even attempt to dodge it as they sipped on their coffee. The man in the car began retreating into the passenger side door.
In the crowd of onlookers some just watched while others attempted to phone to the authorities. Jamie climbed in and grabbing the man by his collar he pulled him out of the car. He then pressed the man up against the rear door still holding his by his collar. Using his free hand he pulled on the white cord revealing Jamie's Ipod from the man's pocket. He held the Ipod in front of the man “Do you remember me?” Jamie questioned watching the man nod his head in reply.
“I could have died because of you!” Jamie shouted as his anger towards the man festered inside him. He started pushing harder as the glass of the window behind the man began to crack. The man said nothing as his fear increased looking into Jamie's eyes. “You're are such a waste of oxygen.” Jamie couldn't explain what he was feeling. It was like he was standing next to himself. Like a movie he knew what was going to happen next, yet he was powerless to stop it. “That ends today.”
Jamie let the Ipod drop to the ground as he raised his free arm up to the mans face. Placing his palm on the man's mouth he used his thumb and pointer finger to plug up his nose. For a few moments there was nothing, no actions or words. Then Jamie saw the man's eyes go wide as his legs kicked up and his arms brought themselves up to Jamie's hands to try to get free. As the seconds when on the flailing got more severe but Jamie just watched the man's eyes as they frantically searched for any form of salvation. A few people screamed for him to stop and a few more even tried to pry Jamie away. But Jamie didn't hear or feel anything. He just watched as the life in the eyes in front of him slowly slipped away. He could however feel the tears from the man rolling down his hand.
Then he was brought back to reality when he heard Melony calling out his name. He realized that the man's flailing had stopped entirely and his eyes were now still as his eyelids slowly closed over them. Letting his grip up he watched the man fall lifeless to the ground. Looking around Jamie saw all the eyes on him, they were all looking at him like he was a monster. What the hell did they know? Jamie looked back to the man ferocious.
“This... This was your fault!” Jamie shouted slightly shaken. “If you just left me alone you'd be fine. You idiot!” He continued to plea his case out as Melony looked on in sympathy.
Elsewhere, fast yet professional footsteps could be head through an empty hallway. That footsteps where that of the man titled Paladin. His long blonde hair hunger over his back curving around the two-handed sword sheathed on his back. His clothing themed white with blue stitching with a patch on his right shoulder that simply said “Professor”. His bright blue eyes were set ahead of him as his stride remained at the same pace. He reached a door that was decorated with a series of numbers. Swiping a key it opened to what appeared to be someones room with a bed and other living arrangements.
“Keen, please follow me. You're needed.” Paladin spoke firmly as the mess of blankets on the bed shuffled revealing a kid seeming to be around seventeen. Without a word Keen got up and walked over to Paladin who then turned around and began walking through the halls again. “Sector twenty-seven has recived multiple reports of hostile activity. We aren't sure who it is. Just go there and report what you see, then engage. We are also unsure of this persons ability so call for back up if needed.” Paladin explained as they both walked to the dead end of the hallway. “You'll be using Thorn to get there. Is this all understood?” Paladin addressed.
Keen nodded as they reached the end of the hall where they could only see one door now. Paladin knocked on it and after a second it slid open. The room was dark but when they stepped in they saw a mostly vacant room. However in the middle of the room there was a throne with throne sitting on top of it. He wore clothing that was reminiscent of what monks would wear. His hair was almost as blue as Paladin's eyes. The hair hung over his eyes so it was surprising that he could see them walking in at all. He sat with his head resting on his balled up fist as his elbow rested on the throne's arm.
“What do you need Paladin?” Thorn questioned calmly quickly shifting his gaze to Keen.
“I just need you to put Keen into sector twenty-seven.” Paladin replied. There was a quick silence. Then Thorn raised his hand and beckoned for Keen to come to him. Keen nervously walked over and stood in front of Thorn. As Keen stood there Thorn pointed his finger at Keen and outstretching his arm he placed his finger on Keen's forehead. There was a quick flash of red and before he had time to think, Keen found himself looking at Jamie several feet away.
Standing for a moment Keen smiled. “No need for report.” He said as he looked on at Jamie. Then he began his approached, walking at first he increased his step. Melony turned her head and noticed Keen running towards Jamie, she rose out of her chair and started running right away. 'Damn it Jamie.” She thought to herself. She made it to Jamie when Keen was still a few feet away. The two stood still and looked at each other.
“Why the hell is she here?” Keen said to himself as he pulled his phone out of his pocket. After pressing the needed digits in he heard Paladin pick up on the other end. “Core is here. Send back up, whatever is available.” Keen spoke quickly afterward closing his phone and placing into his pocket once more.
“Keen. I wonder how long you can hold me off. We both know how long it takes for him to send another group. Not to mention I already know your Virtue.” Melony remarked towards Keen.
“I know your Virtue as well. Not to mention mine completely makes yours useless.” Keen replied as he took a battle stance.
“I'm a lot different then I was then.” Melony began a hastened stride towards Keen. She stopped herself inches away from Keen who retaliated by throwing a punch. Bringing her arm up Melony blocked the swinging fist and shot her right arm forward causing Keen to withdraw. Melony hopped ahead and twisted her body using the circular momentum she delivered a kick that was stopped short in the same fashion she stopped Keen's punch. Keen attempted another blow by Melony countered with her free foot.
As Jamie looked on at the two fighting he realized she had been holding a lot back during his training. Him trying to help would only be a hinder to her at this point. Melony jumped back creating distance between her and Keen. After a second of silence she charged again and plowed a powerful fist at Keen. Seeing that blocking would cause injury he opted to jump back. Right as his foot hit the ground he jumped to his left where he was caught off guard in mid-jump by Melony's fist landing in his chest. He fell back onto the ground to look up at Melony as she stepped over him.
“Keen, that's a synonym for perceptive, correct? So you can perceive potential dangers. However you can only see them when they are set in motion. Otherwise how could you know of a danger that doesn't exist yet. Right?” Melony explained as she stood over the crumbled Keen.
“Where are you going with this?”
“It's your flaw. You can only see plans that are already in motion in the physical realm. But in my head, I can plan out as much as I want and you'll be none the wiser. Knowing this. I just play the pieces of my attack like they were separate as opposed to a whole.”
“You're just buying time, but whatever. When I rushed you as hard as I could I knew your Virtue would tell you to jump back. Then I knew your Virtue would tell you to jump either left or right to dodge my Virtue, most likely left as you favored your left hand for combat. Knowing that, I simply canceled my Virtue as soon as it started and caught you where I knew you'd be. And then it was check-”
“Mate” Keen said cutting her off. Melony's eyes grew worried as in an instant she saw nine other people appearing around her. They all varied it appearance. Glasses, skin tone, hair, clothing and even body language. However somewhere on their person was a badge that read 'Student'. Before any words could be exchanged one of them thrust what seemed to be a lance at her. Spinning herself she dodge the attack only to be greeted by the swing of a short sword which she evaded by bending backwards. Only a small bit of hair was cut from her bangs. The person with the short sword quickly shifted the swords direction, knowing they did so Melony rolled forward out of the path of danger.
Turning around she could now clearly see all ten of them in one frame of her vision. One of the was helping Keen up as he dusted himself off, some girl with blonde hair that Melony couldn't recognize. “Just ten students? Has Scott been giving you trouble?” Melony mocked at the group in front of her.
They only stood silent. It was possible they were told not to release any information regarding Scott. Melony didn't care much but she knew Jamie would like some info, weather he'd admit it or not.
Paladin continued to walk through the various interconnecting hallways, he really hated days like this where he couldn't get a break. He came to another door which slid open at another swipe of his card. Walking in two large moniters could be seen displaying the world in some map format. “Stupor I need you to wipe the memory of anyone without a Virtue in sector twenty-seven for the last ten minutes. Choke I need you to block the vision of anyone without a Virtue in the same sector so they cannot see anyone with a Virtue” Paladin commanded to the figures in front of the monitors.
“It shall be done.” Both figures called our simultaneously. Paladin nodded and exited the room. The door closing behind him he stood there looking at the white wall across from him. “I wonder, will you show up?” Paladin questioned to himself.
“What does 'The School' Want here anyways?” Melony asked after none of the group replied to her last question.
“We received reports of violence, which I believe to be from the boy over there.” Keen spoke as he pointed over to Jamie. Jamie looked around and noticed that everyone seemed to be going on like nothing was happening now. Just a few minutes ago there was a crowd of people watching the confrontation.
“Okay so why just one student? I thought the higher ups responded to emergency calls.”
“The reports weren't too severe. We certainly didn't expect you to be here.” Keen exclaimed. He spoke with more confidence now that his backup had arrived, he believed the fight would be easier now. Laying on the ground Jamie could suddenly feel a great deal of pain in his forehead. He turned his head to Melony and could see a vague shadow standing behind her.
“Melony Zain, what in the world are you doing here?” The figure behind her inquired.
Slightly started Melony quickly turned to see the figured that stood behind her. She didn't hear or feel his presences there at all. “Reaper? I could easily ask the same thing!' She quickly remarked. Reaper simply turned his head to Jamie who was now sitting on the ground.
“You may see me Lannon.” Reaper spoke as he peered over at Jamie. When Jamie heard him speak he could see his focus returning. He looked at Reaper a few feet away. His head was hidden in a jet black armored helmet. It seemed more robotic then metal and where his eyes would be were two red horizontal lines. The clothing he wore was also the same color, it seemed to have thin bits of padding where you would expect there to be. His left shoulder was draped in short red shoulder cape. Once his vision cleared up Jamie could also see two other figures to the left and right of Reaper. They wore attire similar to Reaper but without the stripes on the helmet or the shoulder capes.
“Seriously, why are you here?” Melony questioned trying to keep her eyes on both Reaper's ground and the Students.
“I was asked to keep a close eye on Scott's boy.” Reaper replied looking past Melony at the group from The School. “But I see I wasn't needed. You could wipe them all out in one go, right Core?” Reaper questioned Melony. He watched her eyes quickly twitch to Jamie and then back to him as she reached up and grasped her arm. “Ah, I see.” Reaper said walking forward pass Melony while his two guards followed him. “How interesting, representatives from two of the three main groups are here. All were missing is 'Stellar'.”
“Yo!” The voice boomed from where all the tables of the restaurant were set up. A man with short dark red hair was holding up his cup of coffee. He had a flashy wrist watch and sunglasses on. His clothing seemed to belong to any average person aside from the fact his jeans were also red, which complimented the blue tee-shirt in a weird way. At the same table sat a woman with black curly hair that went down a little past her shoulders. One of the strands of hair was dyed green and was the only hair that hung in her face. She wore a blue dress that had sunflower patterns printed all over it. “Solus and Terra at your service!” Solus spoke with a eerie grin as he lowered his coffee.
“Unprecedented. Kaliber, The School and Stellar all in the same place, gives me that warm feeling inside” Reaper spoke to no one in particular. Jamie was working hard on memorizing all the names he had heard. Looking around he attached these names to faces. Then he remembered hearing Keen and Reaper calling Melony 'Core'. Did they all have cover names? Like most superheros he had read about.
“Jamie whatever happens you need to stay completely still.” Melony spoke as she clenched her fist. She counted fifteen total fighters. She had information on who had what Virtues. There were some that she knew she had no chance against so if worst came to worst she make temporary allies. Melony looked at some kid from the collection of Students who appeared agitated. Without warning he broke the group and charged at Reaper. Melony recognized it was the one who attacked her with the lance.
“Oh?” Reaper simply asked as he watched the young student charging at him. The white lance seemed to materialize of thin air. The figure to the right of Reaper leaped forward intercepting the Student. Reaper's guard put his hand out and placed it on the forearm of the Student. Instantly as Reaper's guard did this the Student dropped dead to the ground only inches away from Reaper. “Thank you Hug.” Reaper said to the guard who nodded in reply.
Melony looked on in amazement. She knew Reaper was on a different level but with one touch his guard killed a Student. What was Reaper's other guard capable of. Reaper stood confident with his arms behind his back as Hug returned to the right side of Reaper. The tension in the air hung thick as everyone continued to scan the others. Melony didn't know the abilities of the other Students but they shouldn't be too much of a threat. Yet if given the time they could call in greater foes. Reaper and his two men could easily dispatch and attacker and might pose the greatest threat. Then there was the two sitting at the table. Melony had heard stories about Stellar but never about the actual members. But she knew that 'Solus' was a play on solar, so he represented the sun. And Terra was a play on earth. So they weren't just some lackeys they must be high ranking members. But she still had no idea what their capabilities were, or their Virtues for that matter.
One of the Students reached in his pocket and pulled out a cell phone, he dialed it and put it to his ear. As he did vines began sprouting out from the buttons and the mouth piece until the phone completely cracked open. “We don't need any of that now dear.” Spoke Terra as she took another sip of her coffee while Solus let out a quaint laugh.
“Reaper is priority.” Keen said to the other Students behind him. Then about three different Students charged out. One of them was the guy with the short sword that also attempted to attack Melony. As the Students got closer Hug once again stepped forward but felt Reaper's hand on his chest. With a nod Hug and the other guard stepped a few feet backwards.
The guy with the short sword got to Reaper before the others and swung the sword at him. Without stepping out of place Reaper brought his hand up and caught the blade. With a twist of his wrist the blade snapped in half, with the broken piece of blade in hand Reaper folded his arm just a bit and swung back placing the shattered blade in the Students neck. The Student fell to the ground clutching his wound. One of the other Students charging at Reaper hand began to glow bright yellow. The Student swung his fist and Reaper caught him by the wrist nearly an inch from his face.
“This glow. When you charged it makes your punches or kicks more powerful right? That could have been useful if you practiced your approached more.” Reaper remarked as he lifted the Student up by his wrist to see the other Student covered in a crystal like substance closing in on him. In one fluid motion Reaper delivered a swift punch into the Student he was lifting up chest's. Then tossing that Student aside Reaper brought his foot up into the chin of the charging Student completely destroying the crystal structure. Both Students fell to the ground without must resistance. “Melony you should come at me. I'd really like to fight you.” Reaper said cheerfully as if he hadn't just killed three people without any effort or his Virtue.
“I'll have to pass.” Melony replied looking at the girl who was sitting at the table. Those vines must have belonged to her. She didn't even move when they grew though so she could do it without any requirements. How scary. Not to mention Solus's power was still in the dark.
“Everyone forget Reaper.” Keen spoke as he looked over at Jamie who sat still in a daze. “Just kill him.” Keen finished by pointing at Jamie. Melony readied herself, Reaper stood still and the two at the table were only paying attention to their coffees. The Students began their charge but where stopped by the sound of a nearby voice.
“Hey Jamie!” Shout Barley as he stepped out of his truck after turning it off. Waking forward he said excuse me to the Students as he stepped through the group of them. All eyes were on Barley as his courage carried him through the the group and up to Jamie. “I was just on my way to bring you the homework you missed, I got yours too Melony so don't get to excited.” Barley joked as he reached into a black brief case he was holding. He preceded to pull out a few sheets of paper which he handed to the still confused Jamie and Melony. They took it and scanned it quickly then looked back at Barley.”
“Thanks.” Jamie said after his time of silence.
“No problem. I expect you in school tomorrow though.” Barley said with a smile. He looked around at all the people who were standing in the streets. “What's going on here anyways?”
It seemed like no one wanted to talk or say anything. Jamie couldn't figure out what was going on. “We have no choice, fall back.” Keen said to his remaining group. Stepping back they began walking away leaving their dead behind. Melony looked on as the group of Students retreated.
“Is the fun over?” Barley questioned seemingly arrogant to the serious nature of the moment.
“We'll be taking our leave as well.” Reaper stated as his group too turned and made their way from the situation. After they had gotten pretty far away Jamie watched as they completely vanished from his sight.
“That sucks.” Barley complained. “I guess I’ll just go home then, sorry to ruin your fun kids.” He retorted as he walked to his truck and got back in. Turning the key he felt the engine start as he drove off. Melony reached down and helped Jamie to his feet. They both looked at each other unsure of what to say to ease the tension they both felt. Instead they walked over to where they were sitting before and began to pick up their things.
Once Jamie had gotten his things he stood up and turned around to come face to face with Terra. “That man, Reaper was it? He called you Lannon, right?” Terra probed to the shocked Jamie.
“Yes.” Was all Jamie could muster out in reply.
“So you're Scott's kin then?”
“Yes ma'am. May I ask why you want to know?”
“No you can't. I was just wondering anyways ways.” Terra talked with a soft face, the kind that you could loose track of time looking at. She lifted her hand up and Jamie could see a dark red seed pushing out of her skin. “Eat this.” She said to Jamie outstretching her hand to his face.
“You're really going to give him that?” Solus scoffed watching Terra and Jamie's exchange. “Do you think he can even handle it?”
“I remember Mars asking me the same question back when I gave one of these to you.” Terra echoed with a smirk. Jamie reluctantly reached over and picked up the seed. He put it up to his eye and twisted it around to look at it as the sun glowed through the thin skin.
“What is it?” Jamie quizzed still examining it.
“That dear, is my Hellion seed.”
Jamie hesitated as he brought it to his mouth. 'It couldn't be too dangerous if one of her allies has eaten it.' He thought to himself. Opening his mouth he placed the seed on his tongue and swallowed it. He felt it running down his throat but lost the feeling of it after it passed his chest.
“What does it do?” Jamie grilled putting his hand on his stomach.
“That's the fun part. But, you'll know when it grows.” She turned around and gave a quick glance to Solus who with a sigh started walking away. “Adios.” Terra called out waving her hand as she and Solus walked away. Jamie observed the sun going down as it painted the sunset over the horizon.
“Let's go home too Melony.” He said turning to her. He had questions, but they can wait.