Only Human

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Hey, this is a 'short' story that I wrote for English in school a few months ago. I don't know if I'm gonna type up the whole thing or not yet. Since this was for actual work it is longer than my other stories, though not long enough for me to call a book, about 1,000-1,500 words. I was trying to keep it concise, so the whole thing's a bit fast, so sorry about that. Any critisicm is appreciated as long as you're nice about it (or at least try to be).
This is the longest story I've ever written that I can look back on without being embarrassed, so that must be a good sign, right?
This isn't what you're here to read...stop reading this. Go on. There's a whole story down there! Go read it. Go away!
Seriously!

Submitted: March 04, 2016

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Submitted: March 04, 2016

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"And so, in the end, we won the battle," Mrs Briston's voice ran throughout the silent classroom, each student staring at her with undivided attention. 

 "But how did they cause the mass-mutation?" asked a voice from the front, its scaly hand half in the air.

 "Well," our history teacher started. "Although the nuclear bombs did wipe out the original generation of Advanced, the leftover radiation either killed the Norms - excuse me, I mean humans - or caused them to give birth to Advanced young. The population was greatly diminished, and only the Advanced, with our abilities, were able to survive in the harsh fallout and radiation. It only took 100 years of interbreeding for us to go from being the dominant race, to the only race."

 Steeling myself, I took a deep breath and asked, "What would happen if someone was born without abilities?"

Every face that turned to me, whether it had scales, fur, horns or no feature of interest, bore the same expression. Pure contempt. 

I reddened, but continued to stare expectantly at the teacher.

Eventually, Mrs Briston said, " I guess we'll find out when it happens, Jimmy."

***

I was surrounded by a rainbow of different shapes and sizes as I walked towards my locker. Everybody around me was so different from one another that my..my normality was the weird thing. 

 Being exactly like everybody else is the most bizarre thing a person could be. (Unless you're a shapeshifer because they fit in in a good way.)

"NORMIE!" a fist like a sledgehammer accompanied the booming voice. My head clanged against my locker, which had still been ten feet away, and when I looked at it to check for blood, all I could see was a lot of swimming black dots, but I shook my head and they disappeared somewhat.

 I pushed against the blue metal for support as I turned, and tried to make the two identical 8-foot-tall behemoths go back to being one. One was bad enough. 

The brute known as Crusher was flanked by an unnaturally thin boy, dressed all in black with tinted glasses and a midnight cane, and a sniggering punk with a pink Mohawk and blue sparks jumping between his hands, which he regularly rubbed together in glee.

"Hey Crusher," my voice was slightly pained, but Crusher was never known for his subtlety.

"Since when are cavemen allowed to go to school, dweeb?" Behind him, Shadow and Sparks was laughing unpleasantly, Sparks' reedy giggle reaching an almost unbearably high pitch.

Trying not to think about the consequences - and failing - I retorted, "I suppose it was when they let you in, numbskull."

I knew immediately that I had made a mistake.

 The crack of his bin-sized knuckles was so loud that it echoed through the rapidly silencing halls, and all eyes turned on us, conversations forgotten. 

 I saw Crusher turn red, then purple, then a dangerous white. He had just taken his first step forward, snarling mouth open when, thankfully, a flaming angel rose from among the crowd. 

 Okay, she wasn't an angel but she sure looked like one. To me at least: Crusher took one look at her and retreated, his cronies having already disappeared. 

 With forced haste, the crowd departed, wide eyes still turned on the fiery spectacle. 

 After a few seconds, she went out with a slight sizzle, and then a tall red-headed girl stood before me. 

 "Thanks, Cindy," I muttered, eyes on the floor.

 "Meh, think nothing of it. Life would be boring if you died," she said, with barely a laugh in her voice to tell me she was joking. "Buy me a chocolate on the way to Grassy Hill and we'll call it even. Btw, we're going now."

 I sighed and followed her out of the school, counting the change from my pocket as I went.

***

 I've known Cindy forever, since before her Abilities Manifested, even. My mum used to babysit her and her sister Linda when we were little. That was back when she was still called Angelica, instead of Cindy (or Cinder is you want to full thing). I still like to think of her as my Angel though, but please don't tell her I said that. She is way too proud of her Abilities (rightfully so but she shouldn't be told that). 

 "Linda Manifested yesterday," her voice disrupted my thoughts and I turned to her. I was surprised to see that we had made it to the hill already. I really was distracted. "She's a telepath." 

 "Linda?" I asked. Cindy nodded. I forced my face into the closest impression of a smile I could manage, then turned away, pretending to look up Grassy Hill. The thing is (and this is important), Linda is eleven. 

 I'm fifteen. ?

 Fifteen.

 Seriously. Her little sister beat me. 

 By four years.

 "Jimmy?" I started walking up the hill at a brisk pace. I didn't want Cindy to see me so angry about something so good. I had just run out of energy. All this pretending that I'm, that I'm normal, is so tiring and stressful and...and I just can't do it. The normality of being different stares me in the face, in every person that I see. 

 Freak.

 Weakling.

 Normie.

 I know that's what they call me. 

 "Jimmy." I refused to turn around, to admit to her how tired I was. I studied the clouds in defiance, pretending I hadn't heard her. Above me, the grey swirling masses of clouds loomed. A downpour was overdue. I continued up the hill, getting soaked was better than being down there, among the Advanced, the epitome of perfect. 

 "Jimmy!" 

 I whipped around, scowling at my only friend, ignoring the concern in her normally mocking eyes.

 "Are you alri-"

"I'm just so sick it, Cindy!" I had never yelled at her before. "The only one, I am the only onein the entire world!" She recoiled at my outburst, but the torrent continued on regardless. The clouds broke, but I didn't care. 

"They all look at me like I'm crippled! Oh it's that poor boy with no Abilities, poor little NORMIE! I'm just so completely average, so boring, so pointless there's no point-"

"Stop right there." The rain couldn't extinguish the flames in her eyes. "No one gets to say that. Not even you." She pinned me down with her fiery gaze until I had to concede. She continued in a softer, but still authoritive, tone. "You are anything but pointless, so far from boring that you brighten everything, and so exceptional that you can shape the world, regardless of your Abilities! 

 "I have known you since we were seven and if you think you can get away with thinking that you are anything other than extraordinary then you deserve a slap." One of her eyebrows was ticked up as a threat, and I made myself look elsewhere. 

 The rain had stopped already. Everything was still: not a breath of wind disturbed the smallest leaf. The sky was still overcast, but even as I noticed this th sky went from black to grey, then grey to white in a matter of seconds. I smiled and the sun pushed it's way through the clouds, where it stayed. 

 I realised Cindy had finished her monogue and I turned to her, mouth still set in a smile, when I realised she was gaping at me. In reply to my questioning look she said, almost breathlessly, "Your eyes turned grey."

 For a moment I was afraid to try, to allow myself a single hope, but then I focused and held my hands out, closing my eyes.

When I opened them, a fluffy white cloud floated just above them.

 

 

 


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