My mind raced back to that moment the light hit me and what I had seen, heard and been a part of. Only now did it make more sense when staring death in the face.
The sky was like a painting, raining fire upon the world that had mistreated it. The comet, which had previously been whole, was now shattered into tear-drops of rage and destruction. As the liquid hot metal touched a building, an explosion would occur. No city was spared, the onslaught was terrible, flattening down the structures of mankind. The world looked in hope to the arrows of light streaking through the smoke and debris, hitting individuals touching their very heart and souls.
The light knew no difference in colour of skin or of different genders. Nor did it differentiate between a young healthy person and an old frail body. It judged all the same way it had done since it came into life no longer than a few minutes ago. Already with the watchful eyes of the stars hoping for good ends to come of this, the light had started judging the chosen ones.
But it did know the sensations of good and evil.
The thoughtful were granted means to help, extensions of their already apparent abilities. Guided by the voices of light to produce the best in which they were created for. Confused only by their human nature, the people cowered in fear at the chosen few, bathed in a glorious light and shining like the stars. They themselves looked towards each other, hoping for an answer for their admirable gift.
The illegitimate hearts of those who had no good intentions suffered. The light cried in despair as it entered the hearts of those few people, changed into a conduit of fear and hatred. It began as a simple thought, multiplying and manipulating until it took control over the whole body and exposed the true face of their inner demons. The people cried at the abominations of power, living shells of their formers selves, the afterthought of mankind’s darkest imagination. With no way to sense the thoughts of each other and deprived of their very freedom of speech, the creatures bore their curse with contempt, immorality and rage.
The last arrow of light entered the body of a young girl, neither her heart nor her soul showed sign of reverence for the new-found power. However it wasn't from within that the power held true, but from the small black book she held in her hand. Holding the hand of her mother, she walked into the light of a basement, without the slightest clue as to what happened. It was all a dream she thought her mother had said earlier. And who was she to argue with her? As the only hope for humanity found shelter underground, the stars found solace that her heart was not at all tainted.
But that did not mean I was in the clear.
My non-functioning teenage heart started beating as the flaming ball of metal almost smashed my face, the impact of the ball threw me into the window of a car.
It went without saying that I couldn't exactly move right afterwards.
Faring a better fate and perhaps some clairvoyance Samantha cleanly dodged to the side, facing minimal danger from the chunk of metal. However her grip on everybody dropped and as all hell broke loose. The titan monster, still angry from the impact of the shield, had leaped towards me. I couldn't do anything but watch as it approached me, lifting its arms to strike when it came into direct contact with one of the meteors. The sound of bones crunching resonated in every ear that was within a 100 meter radius. A girl screamed as the school building, which had previously been standing proud, was collapsing onto the road. The sound of destruction and scent of fear was almost too much for Judy to handle. She bolted, running away from the chaos to find solace in the one place she knew would be safe.
The students had scattered. Like children in a playground, only distraught and mindful of their lives. The smoke and dust had begun to rise, fire everywhere as my vision body started to feel alive again, I wanted to move immediately but my body still felt too heavy. In a bid to man up as I had often been told to I closed my eyes and tried to muster some strength like the heroes on TV would do but all of a sudden the huge weight that I had felt disappeared. All sensation came back to my body, a few numb joint remained but nothing fatal. Not wanting to question my luck, I sighed in relief.
“Hey! Dr Fate, get up!”
Marty’s familiar voice got my attention as I got up and climbed off the car.
“Ugh....what did you call me?”
I asked whilst my vision was still clearing. Only moments ago something had been blocking my eyes, it was cold, metallic and it had felt like a hard hat.
“Why was there a helmet on my head?”
It must have been the only reasonable question I could come up with amongst all the chaos.
“I should try asking you that, the damn thing saved your life just now. I mean, look at the car behind you……talk about collateral damage. That’s going to cost a fortune to fix up!”
I didn't know whether I wanted to punch my friend for his ignorance or if I was secretly awed by his ability to remain calm in a life threatening situation.
“I don’t know if you are still on this planet, but it’s raining fireballs of metal and you’re talking about car insurance!”
“Never mind that,”
He completely dismissed me as I saw some people lying on the floor dazed. One or two were out cold and the others that looked pale or surrounded by blood were clearly dead.
I sighed in frustration as I still tried to wrap my head around what was happening. Only looking at the big picture I finally noticed that the ruins of the school building were everywhere. Most of the fires had started to settle as well, although that was due to the efforts of a rag tag team of teachers who had seen the initial destruction and decided that they wanted to do good for once.
Looking for the leader of the group, I saw Samantha pulling an elderly woman out of the debris. I looked on in wonder as flames behind her gave the girl a fierce glow, as if she was radiating power.
“Hey! Golden Boy, this way!”
She was clearly shouting at me over the sirens, cries of anguish and the roar of the fire. With another small victory in my mental book of accomplishments I tried to ignore the sound of explosions happening in the distance and ran up to her, helping move some debris out the way.
A group of people were stuck under a large beam that had blocked their exit. I put myself between a large chunk of building and the beam and pushed with my legs. The rubble slowly shifted, giving way for the trapped people to escape. Without a word of thanks, they ran off to see if they could be of assistance to others, some stumbling about as they were clearly disorientated.
“So what do we do? You seemed to know what you’re doing...”
Samantha looked at me with sharp eyes that hid a shred of hope, something that I had never seen or wanted to see in her.
“I'm sorry...I don’t kn-“
I wanted to say more but something in me changed yet again. It was the same feeling that fought with the soul of a warrior.
“We go there....!” I pointed towards the city area, visible from the hill the school was situated on.
Samantha shrugged and started moving off, she stopped and turned back around, a look of fear overcoming her.
“Why is this happening to us?”
Although an honest question, it looked like she was fearful of the answer.
Something in me wanted to run up to her and hug her right there, but I knew it was neither the time nor place to do that, not to mention that I would probably die of happiness if I ever did so.
My normal self-responded to Samantha’s question.
“I don’t know....”
My voice was barely a whisper, although she clearly heard it over the sounds of death and panic.
She nodded, her face switching back to that fearless attitude you only see in movies and started running off. I paid little attention to the others as I started following her. It was only then that I remembered that Marty was still there. Coming to a quick decision I wanted to go back and get him but suspected that the road was going to get much more dangerous. I ran hard, trying to catch up with the already sprinting Samantha, jumping over rubble and dodging stray balls of flaming metal.
The world was in chaos.
The balls of flames had taken down every major source of power around the world. The internet was mostly down and the phones had gone dead. Most people were out for themselves now and if it weren't for the good will of some people, a quarter of the world would have died already. In the desperate state the nuclear reactors had been, the people gave them no chance and fled. Within the hour, 350 out of the 500 operational power plants had been made inoperative by the strange effects of the metal as the nearby areas attempted to evacuate.
The people in Canary Wharf had already evacuated the building in an orderly manner. Even though they had thought the meteor would be destroyed, they still left the building as well as most of Central London. It was only when they saw live images of a small metallic rock striking the Big Ben that they lost all hope but not their composure. Even as the meteorites struck the camps holding the people, they remained calm and collected.
The Prime Minister safely staying in Bunker Alpha-4, along with most of the Royal Family and other important figures, was reading a predicted damage report when he got hit by a light arrow. Upon collapsing two men, one a doctor, approached the PM and attempted to bring him around. They were shocked to the transformation that the chairman to the cabinet went through. In place of the plain faced man, a beast hungry for human flesh grew from the tainted heart of the former man. Backing away from the beast, one of the men attempted to reach an alarm on a wall only to be stopped by the beast. It lifted him in the air and looked into his eyes. The man saw nothing but pure chaos in the red irises of the beast. With a snarl the creature let its teeth sink into the neck of the man, only the screams of pain alerting everyone else nearby that something had gone terribly wrong.
Of course there was no way for me to know about stuff like that, I was more focused on climbing over the wreckage that had been created when a meteorite fragment stuck the street we were on. For the last hour we had been traversing these ruins, I was always just within earshot of Samantha who was making note of the terrain ahead.
“How are you easily moving?”
Mentally praising her athletic ability I asked as the sound of an explosion in the distance went off. Samantha turned around quickly, not surprised by my question with a small grin on her face.
“Every summer I went away with my family, on a retreat practising stuff like survival skills.”
Not waiting for a response, Samantha moved on ahead, going into a light jog.
I murmured in exasperation, wondering whether picking up the pace would allow me to catch up to Samantha.
Luckily my short lived determination paid off.
For a few minutes we ran together, heading down a large hill towards the main road hoping to use a car to get to central London. I stopped when I suddenly realised that Samantha was picking up an object on the road. Taking a quick second to examine her form I averted my eyes, lest my body give away my thoughts.
“What is an arrow doing here?”
She asked aloud, turning to face me with a puzzled expression. Even when she asked questions she still had an air of purpose about her like she was constantly aware of how others looked at her. I couldn't help but admire the way her eyes would focus on me one second before sinking into the depths of her mind.
“Um….do you know something?”
I mentally slapped myself for daydreaming and then remembered the name Judy Perr, the girl I had asked for help earlier.
“That must belong to Judy”
“Judy…..oh you mean Judy Perr? I think she is in one of my classes.”
“Yeah, that’s her. Although now that I think about it we need her with us.”
I spoke quickly with the intention of turning to move back towards the school.
“What no! That would take too long!”
Samantha protested for a second before the sound of a growl froze us on the spot.
Turning towards a park parallel to us, a beast the size of a cow faced me. Its face was a tangled mess of features, sitting atop of a mouth that would give a shark a run for its money.
I screamed, instinctively throwing the nearest rock at the creatures face to buy us time. Doing so brought back a memory of throwing rocks at frogs when I was younger. I had a mild fear of unpleasant faces and would lash out almost childishly whenever I saw one. Of course I had outgrown that odd trait but the creature before us didn't help things either.
As we raced down the hill, the sound of the demonic beast pounding its way towards us was terrifying, it brushed past anything in its way whether it was a car, meteorite chunk or fallen house.
I then felt a familiar sensation as my body gained additional weight. I didn't quite know how it happened but I quickly realised this sudden change also made me a better target for the beast due to the shiny armour now reflecting light from the sun. In a panic I started weaving in and out of cars, using any opportunities to slash the beast with the blade I was carrying again.
“What is this thing?”
It then appeared immediately.
Action: Blind Eyes
I wanted to think that the I was lucky that the information I had requested appeared again. But for all of two seconds I paid too much attention and I collided with Samantha. We fell on each other, coming to the ground fast and hard. If it wasn't for my armour and the way I caught Samantha we could have been seriously hurt. Samantha shook her head in confusion before noticing the way she was resting against my armour and got off hastily, her eyes refusing to look at me that moment.
Of course our attention was immediately brought back to reality when the transformed dog started walking slowly again, it’s mouth letting out a disfigured growl. A whimper came from Samantha as she tried moving backwards in fear. Thinking of nothing else to do, I raised my shield to protect the two of us. In that instant, the dog reared backwards, not by the brilliant sheen of the shield, but by an arrow that was now sticking out of the creatures left eye.
The sound it made was painfully horrendous, however it was enough to get us back on our feet and away from the dog that was now swiping anything within close proximity to it.
“It’s not nice to be left out you know?”
Judy, who was standing on top of a Silver Mercedes Benz spoke, sounding incredibly pissed off. She had another arrow loaded and aimed at the beast’s head.
“Wait, don’t fire!”
Not really knowing what I was doing, I had already covered the distance between the two of us and was now blocking Judy’s line of sight. She lowered her bow and looked into my eyes with a glare. For a moment I wondered whether she would listen to me, a boy she hardly knew but fortunately she withdrew her arrow and placed it back into her quiver, inciting a sigh of relief from Samantha who seemed more worried for the beast’s health than her own safety.
“So what do you suggest we do then?”
Judy eyed the beast that was trying to get rid of the arrow lodged into its eye.
“If we keep on running it won’t bother us any more, especially if we get far enough away from it right?”
Samantha was the one who spoke, insisting we carry on moving.
“And go where exactly?”
Judy eyed me suspiciously before noticing that Samantha had already turned and left, heading in the direction they had planned out earlier. Without another word, I also started moving in that direction followed closely by a sulking Judy.
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