"Jacqueline Pritchett, correct?" said the host. I looked up hazily, as if I had awoken from a strange slumber, or as if I had dozed off. I shook myself awake, realizing it didn't seem proper to think-deeply on live television during an interview. Although the idea of being on live television, being somehow a so-called "hero", and just actually be acknowledged for my hard work seemed uncomfortable. I was still not used to being on Earth and still didn't understand many things.
Earth. Well, what was there to talk about? I have been on Earth many times, but have I ever been on Earth, hell no. I'm different, and I can barely function talking in front of these people and large technological screens. I was feeling claustrophobic, but yet the stage room was so large and spacious. Maybe it was just that I felt alone, and the fact that all the people in here are stealing my oxygen and replacing it with carbon dioxide. I did not like to share, even though I was taught as a kid, I grew up knowing that we couldn't share, we had to grab whatever we can because people will try to take everything away from you.
"Jack," Harvey, with his baby face, wavy black hair, and cute smile grabbed my arm to assure me. Harvey, the most handsome man in the world, my best friend. He was there for me every second of everyday, making sure I was okay. He was my "partner in crime" as he likes to say, and he was the smartest person I knew. Everything he said comforted me, "are you okay?"
"I am yes," I said and looked at the host, "and yes, but you can call me Jack."
"It is a pleasure to meet such young, daring, courageous heroes that we have never even heard about, who has done so many things for America for the past years. To go against your own orders and risk your lives to save the billions on Earth is remarkable."
"Thank you," I slightly shrugged, not very sure on what to say, since I heard all the words she said, but the tone at which she said was different and suspicious.
"Why would the government hide such talented warriors from the citizens?" she asked in a higher tone. Her voice annoyed me, it almost seemed like she was prying into everyone's business; her very voice trying to cram down my throat to gather the details, lies, facts, and ideas crammed into my small head. Dear God, if I had to hear her little squeal of delight, I will immediately morph into my suit and taze her or something!
"L.I.F.O. also known as Last In, First Out was a private group of special warriors designed to protect America from the dangers of space, or invading countries from space," Harvey smiled, his perfect voice leaving his lips as he spoke, "Obviously my partner and I had… the most successful victories in space. If LIFO was to be exposed to the world, which it already has, America would break the law for having a secret military or special force, however LIFO knows that every country also has their own secret military. They created us to do what regular soldiers can't, break the law. With a license to kill in space, and missions to stop the corrupt or villainous, LIFO was designed as a last resort."
"Why space though?" she pleaded.
"Space is still… vacant, and it will never be full. Many of the upper class now live in space, also with many popular attractions such as luxurious vacations. Space was really an open target to surrounding countries, and we had to make America known to the others that we are a powerhouse and a danger in space," Harvey cleared his throat. I was completely surprised at Harvey. He was never serious, but rather a more curious, rambunctious boy who always had to make someone laugh. I hardly had the courage to laugh out loud since my demeanor was very stolid and serious, but I had often chuckled internally. I had never fully appreciated Harvey's efforts to keep me alive until a few weeks ago, when I realized my true feelings for him.
Harvey was now serious however and he used awfully huge words the I didn't completely understand. I was never on Earth often, and was too shy to really interact if I was near a human, and when I was on Earth, I spent my time training and away from the chaotic civilization. Harvey, no matter how dynamic he seemed, was also very peculiar in the brain. His constant liking of old Earth and words that I could never fully comprehend really made him a unique partner to me. He always had my back, whether physically in a battle or in a verbal fight, even if I was wrong he would stick up for me, which was rather sweet of him. I adored to be around him, even though he made me sound completely dumb, but if anything he could cheer me up or just make me think good thoughts.
"Are you two together?" the host asked. I had not noticed, but I was actually touching his hands and often squeezing them when I was uncomfortable, which seemed to be almost every second in time. I was completely unaware to the small show of affection, but Harvey didn't take it too big either, since he was good at hiding emotions, very good.
"Only if she says we are," Harvey laughed. The audience also burst with laughter and I just sat there, a little embarrassed and shy that he said that. I couldn't tell if they were laughing at me, or laughing with us. Another reason I didn't understand normal humans, they laugh at people for the strangest reasons, and it seemed silly and foolish. For example, when someone falls everyone just laughs, or even now when people laugh at private things.
"I mean," I coughed a little, "I thought we were."
"Ooh," the crowd murmured at the small comment and Harvey looked quite astonished I said something, since I was often abashed and quiet. I tried not to make a fuss about it, but Harvey knew that being in a relationship could really wipe off our LIFO career, although you think that since he and I just saved the world, and were their best agents, they wouldn't mind a stupid relationship. I'm not saying our relationship is stupid though. Sometimes I just call things stupid because other people hate it.
"Well, then a kiss wouldn't be so dreadful right?" the host smiled. I was now getting pissed at her. First she wants me to give out classified information, then wants to pry into my… thing with Harvey… and make us kiss. Although, I liked kisses, even though I didn't know what one really means or why people do it… when Harvey kissed me, I felt different. I had felt better. When I had first mentioned love to Harvey, it felt normal, and love was even a word that I didn't know, or how it worked. There was a lot I didn't understand, except I understood that. Harvey knew I liked them though, which was exactly why once the host asked, Harvey gently grabbed my face and pressed his lips against mine, and the curly strand of hair brushed against my forehead. I was swooned with that feeling again and felt a little more relaxed, now that Harvey sat closer to me now, his strong muscles rubbed against the back of my shoulder as he stretched to wrap around it.
"That wasn't dreadful right?" Harvey smiled and gently brushed my cheek with his lips. I closed my eyes, and slowly smiled while shaking my head.
"I think I need some air," I had gently nudged him away and looked at the host.
"Alright!" the host clapped, "Let's take a short break. I'm Helen Dubart, and I'm here with Jack Pritchett and Harvey Beltrami, heroes of Earth." I quickly got off the couch and headed off stage to just get some space. Harvey sighed, looked at Helen smiling, and followed after me.
"Jack, if you feel uncomfortable we don't have to do this," he said.
"I just… it's hard not understanding what some people are talking about. I'm not as knowledgeable about language as much as you."
At that he laughed. "I can translate if you want. Dear God Jack, it's not as if they are speaking Russian."
I smiled. "Well, once I head back out there, it'll be hard to try and fit back in."
"Still thinking of heading back out there?" he sighed, looking out the big window that viewed the city of Washington D.C. Flying automobiles and a nice blue sky that shined brightly, filling the building with a bright and luminous light. Our country's capital, home of the Congress and President, and FBI and CIA, a place where people think they are safe, but they aren't safe. It is so devastating to see how our own country hides secrets and decieves Americans into thinking the world is at peace. Sure, the world is at peace, but is space? For now, I thought.
"Well, I was hoping you'd come back with me," I shrugged.
"Of course Jacqueline; of course. I just… I just wonder what it would have been like to die stopping those things, and not having to save everyone or worry about everything. Not to have this burden of hero from the people, and traitor from the government. There was just so much injustice in our mission. I can't feel like I want to be a part of that again. However, I love you, and I want to be with you, and I don't know what the hell I'd do on Earth, so I might as well as go back to LIFO with you."
"Thanks," I slightly blushed..
"No," he smiled and kissed my forehead, avoiding my dark black hair that was nicely put up in a bun, as usual, "Thank you."
"Live in thirty seconds," Helen yelled from the stage.
"Ready to head back out there?" he touched my hand and asked.
"If you are ready to translate it," I bit my lip.
"Whatever happens, just tell me and I'll try to fix it," he couldn't help but blush slightly, his muscles tensing as he smiled. He grasped my hand and fluently dragged me across the floor to head back to the couch to talk on live television.
"Welcome back," Helen squealed and I desired to plug her ears, "now, we have a special question to ask you Jack, if you are willing."
I looked at Harvey first, he shrugged slightly and wrapped his left arm around me waist, waiting for a long story.
"You want to know don't you?" I asked because I knew exactly what they all wanted, "About what happened?"
"Yes, we do."
"Every detail, every thought, every experience, every gruesome kill, every sick mutation, every single thing that happened?" I asked slowly, hoping they could just say no.
"We have the entire day to hear your story, and yes, every single factor," she grinned. The crowd almost leaned in, to hear the beginning of such a heroic story, but not knowing it was one of tragedy, horror, and violence. Harvey had forced me to tell the story, not because "I" specifically was the hero, but because I was the one who experienced it the worst, and if they wanted the whole story I was to tell it. I didn't agree to his proposal on that, but I knew I had to. I waited for the gulp in her throat to disappear, but the more I didn't speak, the more it enlarged. Knowing I had to spill, I looked up at the audience, ready to tell my part.
"It all began with a simple and small game…"
4 Months Ago
Kevin struggled to squeeze into his tight armor, the black fabric rubbing against his legs as he pulled himself into it. This was it, the national tournament for the LIFO game's on the cruise ship. Only astounding players around the world will be able for a chance to win a scrimmage against the top LIFO agents there was to offer. Kevin knew this was his chance to meet the acquaintance of Jacqueline Pritchett and Harvey Beltrami. If anything, he wanted to meet Jack, not only for her wonderful techniques in using weapons, but also her wonderful looks.
Now, how would a young eighteen year-old boy about a secret agency like LIFO? Not only did Jack save Kevin's life when this same cruise got attacked by pirates of France, but also Kevin's own father is the famous Captain Killian, who was in command of the missions that Jack and Harvey run. However, Kevin regrets not being closer to his father and not being such a bad and terrible son because he himself could have been a LIFO agent if his record wasn't so dirty and large.
"Kevin," one of the referees entered the door, "ready to go?"
"Ready as ever," he shrugged and put on his helmet. His breath suddenly warmed up his face, as the cheap helmets given to them were such a nuisance. He despised the helmets they were given, and wished they rather not wear them. However, it was a rule to have a helmet on at all times, whatever reason for that is unknown and stupid. Kevin walked into the arena. The door was shut behind him, as he was now left between four of the other best fighters in the United States of America. The arena was silent and bare, only metallic boxes that were stacked prevented point blank shots to his opponents.
The buzzer rang, signaling the start of a ruthless battle. He quickly grabbed a pistol off the floor and hid behind the boxes, used to cause a maze in this hundred yard foot arena. Checking his ammunition, he heard a laser blast from a few yards behind him. Putting the ammo back in, he jumped up and shot an oncoming opponent. Two down, one more to go. This would probably be the fastest match he ever fought in, and it would be the most victorious.
"Quit now while you can brother," he heard a distant yell from his right. His younger brother, Heagan, was the most loved in the family, if love existed anymore. Heagan was the better student and son to his parents, while Kevin enjoyed girls and guns, and never got the attention he deserved--- more of wanted. He was not as strong as Kevin, but had more brains and logic which possibly was more useful in this last battle.
"Never, if anything, I'm going to see father in the upcoming week, and one of the most beautiful women in the world, I'm going to actually try for once," Kevin smirked inside his helmet. There was no way Kevin was going to let his own brother prevent him from this.
"Is that all you think about? Girls?" he heard the distant question, "Anyways, you can't beat me."
"I can beat you with my helmet off," Kevin yelled back. The helmet helped with reloading and aiming your weapon, and Kevin didn't need those cheap tools to win. He believed he had skill, and that skill was all he needed.
"Don't even try Kevin, you know the rules."
"Haha, screw them," he threw the helmet off his head and got a better vision of his surroundings. He breathed deeply as he could now breathe clean oxygen and a crisp wind against his face. Suddenly, a sharp pain blasted him in the face, one of peculiar speed and a burning sting: a laser. Kevin immediately slumped to the ground as a direct hit with a laser caused immediate "death" in the game.
"Why did you shoot!?" one of the refs ran over, only to see Kevin's face skimmed by the laser. Skin was partly gone and it was a clean scrape where flesh was visible. Blood oozed not like a broken dam but more like a small leakage of a drainage pipe. However, covering the blood was this small substance of green goo that seeped into his skin and disappeared.
"I didn't know! I thought he was just kidding!" Heagan looked more upset than victorious. He shot his own brother while he didn't have armor on, and now his brother could be injured.
"Take him to the infirmary now! We must get him there quickly," the ref panicked and immediately called for emergency crews to come.
"Come Master Heagan, he'll be alright," an older gentleman dressed in a suit escorted him out.
"He'll be okay right? I mean, it wasn't a deadly wound, only a small gash on his face," Heagan was terrified and worried. Had he killed his older brother? Of course he and Kevin never had the best relationship as brothers, nobody really had a good relationship with family these days, however Heagan always cared for his brother secretly. Although Heagan blames the accident on Kevin because of stupidity, he blames himself for shooting as well.
"Of course Master Heagan," the man said, and now Heagan was very interested in this man in the very nice business suit. He had light brown hair, and a very small but intimidating beard. His eyes were fierce, as if he was a man of vision, and he would do anything to see it achieved.
"Who are you exactly?" Heagan asked.
"Why, I am the creator of this game," he smirked.
"Wait, you're that guy... Lucifer. The guy who tried to get rid of LIFO and destroy all it's agents, you are trying to destroy America. My father told me not to talk to you," Heagan started to walk away.
"However, you won and I am the only one to give you your prize," he smiled, it wasn't the most pleasant smile. Heagan could feel a spark of evil and ferocity coming just from the slight curve of his lips as he turned around in curiosity. "Your father and I had terrible business in the past. He often likes to exaggerate stories."
"When will I meet them?" he asked, ignoring the comment about his father.
"Oh don't worry," Lucifer grabbed his own hands, as if patiently waiting, "they will come soon... and you'll get to meet them."
"Can you assure that?" he felt bad he had to ask so many questions, but he felt like he should know them, he did win after all. Took him seven months, but he did it.
"Oh yes, I can definitely assure it, give it a week or so," he tilted his head slightly, then turned around and walked away. Heagan got the feeling that everything seemed off, that even though there was gravity on the ship, that he was floating around; however something big was coming. He was having a premonition that something terrible had happened, it was because of something he caused, and there was no way of stopping it. This is all his fault.
"I got a bad feeling about this," he grumbled.
Kevin woke up feeling normal. He felt neither sore nor tired, but more of groggy, as if he took a long nap. Touching his soft face, he realized the scar on his face was gone. It must've been a dream, a terrible dream where he lost to his own brother and got shot in the face by a laser. It was hardly a nightmare to a normal child, but Kevin wasn't normal was he?
"You alright son?" a young voice asked. Kevin looked to find a doctor looking at a computer. Doctor and all he was, with the bleach white outfit, geeky glasses, and thin complexion. Anybody could look at this young man and know he was a doctor.
"What happened?" he asked.
"You got a laser blast to the face," the doctor said normally, like it was a normal thing to get blasted in the face.
"Why is my face fine then?" Kevin asked slowly, trying to act calm, although calm he was not. It wasn't a dream, reality happened, and it was huge.
"We used a energy healing core, also known by and EHC, and used by actual LIFO agents. It immediately healed your face right up, so you are free to go. Just try not to get into any more trouble. I don't want to see you here again, especially with another laser wound."
"I lost didn't I?" Kevin sighed as he got off the medical table.
"You lost as soon as you took that mask off son," the doctor winced. Perhaps he didn't want to offend the young adult, or maybe he just winced at the idea or pain of being shot in the face. Either way, he went back to his blank face and looked back at the computer, in which he seemed more interested in than Kevin. Kevin headed towards the door and it automatically opened for him, since the doors had motion sensors. Turning left, he found an odd looking man in a suit. It was all black except for his white undershirt and red tie. As soon as Kevin stepped out the man looked at him, as if expecting him.
Kevin got a feeling of power from his presence, a feeling of interest. A feeling that made his heart pound and pound in adrenaline and excitement, almost like a feeling of pleasure he found with girls. For some reason, he felt as if he had known this man.
"Hello," the man greeted. He did not smile, nor frown. His face perfect, not angelic, but more as delightfully evil.
"Greetings?" Kevin said in the form of a question, not really sure why this strange man was bothering him. "Do I know you?"
"Of course," the man smirked.
"I've never seen you before."
"There is a difference between seeing, and knowing," the man adjusted his collar then mushed his fingers together, as if just patiently waiting.
"Well if I know you, I should know your name," Kevin smiled, already he was beginning to be seemingly interested in this man.
"I have many names," he quickly smiled.
"How does one have many names?" Kevin said, "I mean, I'm just Kevin."
"Oh, you are not just 'Kevin'. You are Kevin Killian, son of the famous Andrew Killian and brother to Heagan Killian. You are probably the richest, most popular teen the world has ever seen or heard of. Number one player in Laser Danger, well, you just aren't Kevin, at least not anymore."
Kevin burst out laughing, "Who the hell are you?! Are you God?"
The man found great humor in his comment, in fact he chuckled at it. It was the first time Kevin ever heard such a manical, deep, grumbling laugh. If anything, it was more like a deep growl, like a dragon awaking from its slumber, "I guess you could say that."
"Why are you talking to me?" Kevin asked, still slightly laughing, "Does God want me to do something?"
"No, but the Devil does."
"Why would He want me to do?" Kevin laughed again. He found everything this lunatic said was just crazy, and Kevin could tell his unsinscereness was pestering the man in the black suit.
"I want you to stay on the ship for a while," the man advised.
"Wait," Kevin quickly stopped his laughter and took a hard look at this serious man. Maybe this man wasn't so crazy after all, in fact, from the way he sounded, this man was being very... reasonable, "you are the Devil?"
"Expected someone more uglier? Dear, it says in the Bible that I, Lucifer, was one of the most handsome, beautiful of angels there was in all of Heaven. Did you expect a pitchfork, devil horns, and a spiky red tail? I can change into that if you want."
"No thank you," Kevin shook his head.
"Good, just try and stay on the ship as long as possible," he smiled.
"And do what?"
At this, Lucifer started to walk away, not really bothering to look back because part one was accomplished. Part two... well, that was inevitable, it was bound to happen. Kevin still stood there, not really bothered at the fact he had an interesting conversation with the Devil, but more bothered at the idea of what he was going to do now. If he was to spend another damn week on the ship, he had better make the best of it. Might as well get together with some lovely ladies and enjoy a couple drinks. He shrugged, thinking it was the best idea yet.
Is it possible to just do something so pleasurable, but yet wake up feeling guilty, and it's just that overbearing feeling of wrong? Kevin couldn't help but wake up feeling like that, but then again, he thought that the small moments of pleasure was worth a few hours of guilt. He got up and looked around to find the three other naked girls, silently sleeping underneath the covers, all willing to share the warmth. Getting up silently, not trying to wake them, he glided towards his dresser and put a white tee and cargo shorts on. For a strange reason, he had the urge to visit Heagan.
Looking in the mirror, Kevin saw the strangest thing. His black hair was fine, still pointy like stakes with the gel, but it was the rest of him. This faint, luminous and blurry glow covered him entirely. His muscles were now intense, buff, and vigorous. This overwhelming feeling of power and strength filled him with a sense of godlike powers. Suddenly, it's like the mirror flickered like a broken projector, and suddenly Kevin turned into a... a monster. He had no face, but yet he could see. He had excessive arms, six to precise, three on each side, and the last ones curved, giving a sharpness just like a razor blade or an AUS.
Now, something as terrifying as that would make any person wet themselves a flood, or make them paralyze with uttermost terror. However, Kevin was not normal, as everyone knows now. In fact, he was more fascinated in himself. Touching the pale nonexistent face, he could feel just flatness, smooth flatness that was across his head. Kevin was thinking of how he could possibly see with no eyes, talk with no mouth, or smell intensely with no nose, but it was impossible to found out how he could do such things. Thinking how he could turn back to himself, he flickered back to normal.
Astonished, he started to laugh. This was amazing in his opinion. It wasn't everyday someone turned into a demon of pure wonder and power. His urge to see Heagan grew intensely. He shouldn't just barge in at around three in the morning, although he knew his brother was awake. He could sense it, like a hunter can sense his prey near. Grabbing a fashionable jacket he left his room in search of a more interesting game.
Down the hallways he strutted silently. He had passed a few workers, and they only acknowledged him with a smile. However, there was one worker he was interested in.
"Like it?" Lucifer grinned, wearing the same suit.
"Like it?" Kevin scoffed sarcastically, "I feel great."
"Good, because you will spread the contamination around."
"What?" Kevin whimpered, "but, it's my power. Why must I share this? I don't want to share this power with anyone!"
"One, you already contaminated the three lovely girls in your room. Two, all who you contaminate, which should be everyone, with follow your orders. You orders are quite simple from me however," he stopped smiling.
"How did I become this? What did you do to me?" Kevin asked, not upset of course, but more curious in his transformation.
"I didn't do anything," Lucifer laughed, "you did this all yourself boy."
"The laser blast..." Kevin whispered.
"My my, you are getting very good at this."
"So... what do you want me to do?" Kevin asked, looking at his new commanding officer, and eager to hear a command.
"Contaminate everyone on this ship, and I mean everyone," at the word everyonee, his tone darkened and his words turned into growls. Kevin thought about this power, he had the power to change, the power to do something. It was now his turn to get what he wanted, to get what he deserved: power. He wanted to change the world.
"Am I going to change the world?" Kevin asked curiously.
Lucifer jerked suddenly, the question bothered him, "Yes, we're going to fluctuate and eradicate."
"Time to be written down in the books," Kevin grinned.
"How can you be notorious in history if there will be nobody to note it down, or even read it for that matter?" Lucifer smirked, and never wanted to stop.