General Davis sat outside the slowly wearing down building which had clearly been forgotten about. The sidings had been falling off, the roof was barren of any shingles and the paint had been stripped in several places. Stepping up to the first wooden step leading to the porch he could feel the splintering wood under him begin to give way.
“Are you sure your information was correct about her being here?” Davis asked as he looked back at the two well armed guards behind them. Their armor was similar to that worn by the guards of one James Alics. After his defeat at his compound the armor was found by the investigation team and handed over to Davis' division where it was studied and re-manufactured. They optimized on mobility, flexibility and protection so they were naturally ideal for his needs, despite costing a fortune to make.
After speaking he heard a shattering crash from behind , turning his attention to it he saw the entire front of the house exploding outward as if a car crashed through it. In the midst of the rubble there was a young girl appearing around nine years old. Her long blond hair was shaggy and hanging over her face. Through the strands of hair her bright green eyes burned with insanity, accompanied by the snarl expression she wore. Her clothing was torn and the colors were pretty much indistinguishable from each other. He fingers arched as if they belonged to a beast and she stood with a hunched demeanor.
“Pretty sure it was right.” Spoke one of the guards with a shuddering laugh as he and the other guard stood unaffected by the girl's appearance.
Davis turned around again, facing towards the two as he stood for a few moments looking at them. “Well, lets all just stand here!” He shouted sarcastically at them. They nodded in understanding as their armor started to lift them off the ground by the two thrusters on their backs. This technology was also first tested at Alics' compound. It was able to lift a heavy mass, so lifting a light weight solider was effortless. They un-clipped a small modified assault rifle off their backs, they were slick and aerodynamically proficient. They fired rounds that seemed to work on someone's nervous system, this was perfect when the target needed to be subdued and not killed.
Leaning forward their thrusters slightly increased their output, pushing them forward without having to touch the ground. The two soldiers spread into different directions towards the girl. As they readied their guns she let out a monstrous scream, arching her back and spreading her arms. She set her eyes on the man approaching her from the right. Leaping in his direction she attacked. He attempted to avoid her but soon felt the harsh claw press into the chest plate of his armor. Then he was sent spinning into the fence across the street, uprooting it from the ground. He groaned as he stopped spinning. Standing up to catch his breath he saw the little girl standing right in front of him.
She raised her arm to prepare for another attack but was halted when she felt the stunning ammunition pelt her from behind. She turned to face the other guard, who had his sights still trained on the girl as he emptied the clip that was in; and replaced it with professional timing. This gave time for the guard closer to her to back away a few feet and raise his sight on her too. Slightly paralyzed the girl turned to face the guard that had just backed away from her. She was gritting her teeth and snarling at the both of them. They weren't sure if she had enough intelligence to the point where she was formulating a plan, or is she was far enough gone that this was just the animal instinct of being backed into a corner.
Davis looked down at the clipboard he was holding and quick read over the sheet. “Bethany Moore is it?” He said softly as the girl turned her head in a mild reaction to the name. “We're here to help you darling, just come with us and we'll make it all better.” He said in a tone that he thought would appeal more to the child. Instead the girl began to charge without warning, giving no reaction time to the guards. Davis watched as the beast approached him with pouncing speed. Calmly he reached to his side and pulled out a rather heavy side arm and pointed it at the girl. Pulling the trigger a bullet similar to the rifle's ammunition blasted out of the barrel. The bullet hit her directly in the middle of her forehead, causing her to quickly twitch then fall still to the ground.
“Target 'the friend' has been neutralized.” Davis recorded into a small device as the guards came over to him. Without any dialogue one reached down, picked the woman up, and carried her over to the car they came in. Walking over behind the guards Davis noticed a middle aged man that was looking on from a distance who had presumably observed the whole ordeal. Davis smiled and gave the man a friendly wave, when without any movement from the guards the man's head dropped dead from a bullet wound, staining the ground he stood on. Watching the body drop Davis turned his head towards the car and his smile disappeared. “Let's get going now.” He sat in the driver's seat and waited for the men to get the girl in the back seat with restraints. Once they had, Davis drove off leaving the destroyed house and the dead civilian in his wake. However all he could do was smile...
In the gym room Jamie watched as his classmates began heading to the changing room so they could get home as fast as they could. He followed them out the doors, up the stairs and down the hall into the changing room. It all felt so surreal to him, he was confused. One of his acquaintances said something to him but he was too zoned out to understand what he asked, so all he did was nod to him. Once he was back into his regular clothing he stepped out and began his trek to the front door followed by Damien.
“That was amazing, what, I mean how did you even do that?” Damien excitedly asked Jamie.
“I... I don't know.” Jamie replied with his eyes staying forward, attempting not to meet anyone's line of sight.
“Puberty must of hit you like a ton of bricks man, that was the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen.” Damien said through several chuckles as his mind replayed the event. For a while Jamie didn't say anything as they walked silently through the hall.
“I have to go to my locker, so I’ll see you tomorrow.” Jamie said, breaking the silence. Damien got slightly concerned by Jamie's attitude so he decided it was better not to keep pressing on the subject. He just nodded and headed off in a different direction to the bus that would take him home.
Finally alone Jamie walked to his locker, entered his combination and reached in to grab his backpack. He swung it around to his back and proceeded to close his locker, lock it back up and give the dial on it a little spin as if it really did anything. The bus that went by his house had no doubt already departed from the lot so he headed for the front door. The school was much more empty now as a few walkers traversed the hall, and those who had after school activities were rushing around. He was in no hurry, he wasn't even sure if his father would be home. He had always had the most obscure work schedule Jamie had ever seen; without warning his dad would rush off and come back hours later.
Stepping out the wooden doors once again the only sounds he could hear were the distant mummers of his peers and his feet pelting the stone beneath him. Throughout the school day the climate had dropped a few degrees but it didn't bother Jamie too much, even in his short sleeve shirt. The cold never really bothered him, he preferred it much more to the warmth of summer. He took the same path that he took to get to school earlier that morning. It's wasn't exactly the fastest way but it was the way with the least amount of turns so he preferred to just get home faster. The sky was much darker this time around and the trees seemed more barren then before, like the leaves on them simply gave up.
After awhile he returned home, walked up the porch and opening his door he went in. Closing the door behind him and setting his backpack down he scanned the downstairs rooms quickly. “Dad?” He shouted and waited momentarily for a reply, but wasn't surprised when he heard none. Walking into the kitchen he took note of the small piece of paper taped to the fridge that told him his dinner was in the microwave so he could heat it up whenever. He wasn't exactly hungry at the moment so with a sigh he walked to the living room and crashed down on the sofa.
Sitting there he observed the seconds on the clock seeming to slug along, he pondered if the reason they appeared to be going by so slow was because he was watching them. He remembered his science teacher once told him that the mere observation of an experiment could greatly alter it's outcome. Did that apply to things that were mundane? Not a test, but just something you walk by every day failing to notice it. Then one day it catches your eye and you turn to it only to notice it doing something out of the normal. What if every single being on the earth turned away from all clocks at the same time. Would time cease to function or would it carry on as normal? This would mean time in itself is just an illusion. If that's so, then what does that say for the significance of the human race who depend solely on that illusion to order them around everyday.
Or does it vastly increase humanity's significance if they have the ability to completely alter a situation through mere observation. This chained him into thinking about what was behind him, not so much what was there but the validity of the objects themselves. Without a doubt no one was looking at them for the moment so did they even exist? Why would they, for the time being that had no reasoning to be mentally processed. Without perceptive interaction from a human or animal then there was no clear evidence that they were there. His mind was swimming with several logic and supernatural debates, like his brain was arguing with itself. Is space infinite simply because we can't give a definite end to it? Everything has to stop as some point, right? If there was an end to 'space' what would exist beyond it?
He thought about science and how when it couldn't fully explain how something worked they'd create a hypothetical force and slap the word 'dark' in front of it. Dark matter, dark flow, dark energy and so forth. Those who believe in and trust science accept these forces as factual even though they are unseen and incapable of completely proving. Yet these same people will bash things like religion! The idea of a deity is just another unseen force similar to science. This meant that a human's morals were crafted on belief of one thing or another, nature versus nurture. If someone were raised under absurd beliefs would their morals be absurd even if they were given an otherwise perfect life? Just how strong is the brains ability to believe?
Did the monsters we believed in as children exist in a physical realm because we thought of them? Is that why they no longer bother us when we're older and realize how ridiculous the idea is. What if someone grew up to continue believing in them, is that where manifestation proof of such mythical beasts comes from? Surely all of those photos and various subjects of study can't all be hoaxes. It's unreasonable to assume as such. If enough humans were to believe in any one thing would that give the idea enough strength to become part of our dimension? Is there an unseen lurking force that haunts us from every corner, every dark hall way or every closed eye? Thinking about all this made Jamie slightly paranoid, causing him to sit up and look around to affirm that behind him was still there.
The room was still apart from the small specs of dust that glimmered from reflecting the sun's light. The furniture behind him remained notably untouched, not just today but as if no one had sat on them in weeks. With the raise of an eyebrow he turned back around to face the television in front of him. Reaching towards the remote he pushed on the button so the T.V. lit up. It was already turned to the channel that more often then not was playing some sort of news program. The feed was from a helicopter observing the reconstruction of the recently destroyed hospital. More striking was off in the distance he could see that the lake was full.
If reports were true of it being completely drained then how was it back to being full? There's no way to completely refill a body of water in that amount of time without anyone noticing it. Turning it up all he could hear was the yammering of the reports of how much the reconstruction would cost and the injuries of those involved. He could vaguely see near the wreckage of the hospital a lonesome black unmarked van. He sat up and moved to the edge of the couch to try to see it clearer. Squinting his eyes he got closer, when the feed cut off it sent his screen into static with the loud noise accompanied with it. He jumped back from the sudden change; just then he heard the front door unlock and he turned to face it.
The door swung on it's hinges and let a gust of cool air waft through the immediate area. The glowing silhouette of Scott stepped into the room with a troubled look on his face. He was dressed in the only suit he owned, the last time Jamie remembered his father wearing it was when he was at his grandmother's funeral. Scott looked over at Jamie and smiled softly as if nothing was out of the ordinary.
“I'm going to go get changed and you and I are going out to eat.” Scott said, and continued to walk up the stairs. After he disappeared into the second story Jamie picked up the remote and flicked the T.V. off. He looked over to the stairs with mild worry, he never asked much about his dad's job. He just didn't need to know as long as he was still bringing home money. He stood up and paced over to his sneakers that he had taken off only an hour ago. Placing his feet in them, he reached down and laced them up tight.
He noticed a black briefcase on the floor that hadn't been there. His father must have brought it in. Jamie was curious as his eyes focused in on the little silver latches securing the contents. Reaching over, he ran his finger on the top of the cool metal and debated between opening it or leaving it alone. Lifting both of the shining pieces of metal he saw the front of it fall open but where he was expecting to see several documents he saw one slip of paper. Its back was facing him so he couldn't yet read anything on it. He silently reached in to grasp it when he hear a floor board above him creek.
Slamming the case back shut he felt his skin pinch between the two interlocking parts. He stood up and waved his hand around as if it would help any, while grunting through his teeth. He looked up the steps and saw his father looking down on him. They exchanged glances as Scott raised an eye brow at him. Jamie returned the look with a mild grimace.
“Right.” Scott jested as he walked down the stairs, fixing the blue collar on his shirt and patting the dust off his dark jeans. “Lets go.” He stated as he walked out of the still open door being followed by Jamie. They walked off of their porch and approached Scott's prized black Lamborghini that sat glossed in the sun. Jamie knew a car like that was far beyond his father's budget but he didn't complain, his dad dropped him off in that at school. Nothing to whine about.
Walking around the car he opened the passenger door and sat inside it. Hearing the slam of the door next to him he placed the seatbelt across his chest. Resting his hands on his lap he looked over as his dad got in and flashed him another smile. He buckled up as well and turned the key to start the car. The vehicle shuddered as the purr of the engine vibrated through it. Such a settling sensation Jamie would never get used to. He had hundreds of questions he wanted to ask as they started to pull out, but for now he would relax in the surreal. He didn't know how his father got it but he knew why, everything about the car lulled him into a state of security. The smell, the feel, the sound of the road, the soft hum of the radio and the smooth ride all worked together to make you feel at home.
After a while of elapsed reality, they arrived at one of the restaurants that was hard to pronounce so everyone called it something different. They both were silent as they stepped out of their respective sides. The air was cool until they entered through the fancy glass doors. The sounds of chatter and clanking silverware were instantly present as they peered around at the cloth set tables. Each was dressed with delicately folded napkins and a single lit candle. It was the kind of place where you were careful not to move too much while eating because the atmosphere was just so fragile. They waited several minutes to be seated; standing there they observed the others, there wasn't anything better to do.
Finally they heard a sweet little voice say “Lannon.” Turning, Jamie saw a petite girl that appeared around his age; her hair was long, black, and pushed out, held in place by a pink hair clip.Her eyes where a soft delicate hazel but it seemed as if another color was behind them, contacts maybe?She looked at Jamie and smiled at him “Right this way” She said so low Jamie almost missed it. Walking behind her Jamie once again scanned the restaurant through their new angle as they walked further to the back.
The lady stopped and directed Scott and Jamie to the small table next to them where they both took their respective seats. The seats were soft and lulled you into a relaxed state. The smell of the burning candle was vague but potent enough to change the atmosphere. It was a pleasant feeling, all the effort they put into making everything work together, from the dimmed lights to accent the candles to the smooth white cloth on the tables themselves. Jamie picked up the glossy laminated menu. It listed off every mixture of meat and every combination of soups and salads.
Reading through he eventually came across the meal he wanted, the menu had no pictures. The way the food was described was so vivid that the taste seeped from the words. The woman came back after a few minutes had passed to take their order. Jamie got a steak meal complete with potato and corn, Scott got some sort of pasta dinner. They sat mostly silent, every now and then striking up conversations about school and other useless topics. Jamie knew what he wanted to talk about but figured it was better to wait until the food got there. Sitting in his chair he just watched his father, who despite trying to relax looked on edge. Jamie's suspicion was beginning to grow, he just kept thinking back to the piece of paper.
He wondered if his mother knew anything about it, she'll be back home from her business trip in about five days depending on the flight schedule. He also was curious if his father was on to his thoughts, if he knew that he thought something was up. The waiter came back and placed their ordered drinks in front of them and flashed another smile and walked away. Leaning forward Jamie took a sip of the water he had, he thought some carbonated drink would ruin the first class meal. Jamie and Scott's head turned towards the sounds of shattering glass against a hard floor.
“Hope that wasn't our food.” Scott joked and looked to the other patrons whose attentions were also grabbed by the event. He let out a slight chuckle when they felt the presence of the woman next to them as she placed their food on the table. “That was fast.” Scott noted, looking at his food then to the woman whose eyes were on Jamie as she placed his plate down. She said something to Jamie but between the other conversations and sounds of the kitchen he only made out two of her words “See, later.” He was going to ask what she said but she quickly turned away and vanished into the kitchen as he watched her. He swore he had never seen her before, yet she acted as if they'd met or... will meet.
“Wow! Try to be more obvious.” Scott said, laughing at Jamie gazing at the woman. He twirled his fork into the meal and brought it to his mouth, biting in he ate it with the delicacy it deserved. Jamie couldn't help but laugh too, caught within his embarrassment. He cut off a piece of meat with the dinner knife they had supplied and taking a bite he instantly realized why this place was held in such high regard. It was tender but not soft, there was this smokey heat that came off it that filled his mouth and blanketed his tongue in its robust flavor.
They ate in silence for awhile. Well, silence wasn't the correct term. They still were surrounded by the usual sounds they were used to at this point. Jamie looked up at his father as his meal was slowly vanishing. He hated the awkward silence of eating, when all conversations normally halted.
“Uh, so about my dream.” Jamie said nervously breaking their shared silence looking up from his plate still.
“Yeah?” Scott said through his small sips of his now almost empty glass; he was just working through the watered down liquid at the bottom.
“It was super realistic, and on the news with the hospital being destroyed and everything....” Jamie replied after another bite of his meal.
Scott looked up from his plate and looked Jamie in the eye, slightly concerned. Not so much about Jamie finding out, but how it would go down in such a public place. “Yeah it was destroyed Jamie, so how would you have been there if it blew up? It was just a dream, leave it alone.” He spoke, moving the final noodles on his plate around.
“Yeah, no yeah I get that...” Jamie trailed of looking outside as the day was slowly dissipating. “But today has been weird. I keep doing things that I shouldn't be able to do.”
Scott nervously adjusted in his seat, he was full but he almost wanted to start eating just to avoid the conversation. “Thats odd, like what?” He spoke, playing stupid, but he already knew. Even just looking at him he could tell that the changes had already started. In all honesty Scott always hoped that Jamie took to Cynthia's side of the family.
“Like, okay this whole stupid-dodge ball thing. I was chucking those dodge balls out like it was nothing. And I just feel different. Like I’m invincible!” Jamie shouted out of mild excitement, hoping to get through to his father. “And don't you dare tell me it's that point in my life where 'my body is going through changes.' because I swear I’ll hit you.”
Scott couldn't help but laugh at the thought of Jamie thinking he could even scratch him. “I don't know what to tell you I...” He looked out the window and spotted a stationary black van. Looking to his son for a second he peered at the van to see if anyone was in it. “We have to leave.” He said reaching across taking the last bite of Jamie's meal. “Let's go.” Frantically he spoke, grabbing his coat and pulling Jamie up from his seat, while he placed the needed money for the bill and his tip down.
Jamie didn't have much to say as he was rushed towards the door. Opening the door he heard its chime ring in his ears. They walked across the large parking lot. Scott's eyes were dead set on his car doors, he could feel the tension in the situation that Jamie just couldn't decipher. Finally after what felt like a lifetime they made it to the car. Placing his hand on the car door he looked at the glass of the window and saw the faint reflection of what he least wanted to see.
“Mr Lannon.” Spoke a well dressed figure that Scott could remember addressing him at the the lake. Next to him was a figure covered completely in dark clothing, including a black straight jacket with a white blank mask of the person's face hiding any sense of identification; but Scott knew who it was. “We're here to talk about your trial, seems you've been ignoring us.” He spoke once again this time turning to face Jamie, giving him a sinister smile.
Scott was speechless, he couldn't believe the timing of it all. All he could help to do was turn to face his son who had already been looking at him. Their eyes met as Scott stood, running hundreds of scenarios through his head. Nothing amounted to a reasonable exit, all he could do now was accept whatever this man told them, he thought looking back at the masked figure. Or if need be, kill them.