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    Chronicles of the Wraith - Aiden's Story

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    Chronicles of the Wraith - Aiden's Story

    Post  Jett-2213 on 17/7/2012, 12:45 pm

    The backstory of the Isotope who stayed behind in the Halogen-Infested Jvstice world of Vatan at the end of Operation: DAWNING PEACE.
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    Re: Chronicles of the Wraith - Aiden's Story

    Post  Jett-2213 on 17/7/2012, 12:59 pm

    Chapter One – The Dark-Haired Boy

    Standing in a dark room illuminated only by a single large window that displayed a bright white room, Lakas took a deep breath as he ran a hand through his military-cut graying hair, leaning further into the leather chair he was sitting in, his eyes locked on the window as the scientist next to him continued to brief him on the situation.

    "…And we ran all of the usual tests, but we still cannot determine what its ability is. I think it is time to consider it a defective specimen, Major General." The scientist said to Lakas before also turning his head to the large window on the wall, observing the being on the other side that sat in a far corner of the white room, arms wrapped around its knees, which were up to its face. The scientist was a middle-age man with light brown curly hair and a beard to match. He wore the typical outfit for a lab attendee. As the two looked on, neither spoke a single word. After a few moments of silence, the Major General spoke, his voice naturally cold and loud.

    "No. Helli0n has put in too much work on this runt. Allow me to talk to it face-to-face. If it does not show any signs, then you may classify it a failure and have it recycled." Lakas said as he lifted himself from his chair, the arching in his knees reminding him how old he was getting.

    "Major General, I do not think that is a good idea. The specimen may attack you as you try speak to it." The scientist said hurriedly to the older man, who only turned back to look at the bearded man with a sinister smile.

    "You forget who you are talking to. I once held back an entire legion of Halogens by myself. Had those undead abominations running with their heads severed off. If I can handle that, I think I can deal with one little lab rat." Lakas announced before exiting the dark room, leaving the scientist alone with a brown leather chair.

    After some seconds had passed, the Major General opened the door to the white room, quickly stepping in and closing the door to prevent the specimen inside from escaping. Looking around the room first, Lakas adjusted his cuff links as he took a few steps towards the far corner, where the specimen sat. Stopping a few feet in front of it and standing up straight, Lakas brought his hand up to a salute, introducing himself to the being in the corner.

    "My name is Lakas, serial Number 0003. Major General of the Isotope Faction. I am your superior. As your superior, I must know your name. Can you tell me it?" Lakas asked in typical military fashion, bringing his hand down from the salute to his side, waiting for an answer from the being.

    The being, however, did not mutter a single word. It remained with its head down on its knees, which were wrapped by its arms. The Major General waited a minute more for an answer, but none came from the being in the corner. After another minute, Lakas began to grow furious, for he was a very impatient man and was never ignored by anyone lower than him in rank.

    "I will ask again, maggot. What is your name? As Major General and as your Superior, I order you to tell me." Lakas said in a sterner voice, but found no answer with a change of tone. Despite having the urge to show the specimen who he was dealing with, the Major General only asked the question again, every time with more and more anger.

    "What is your name?"

    No answer.

    "What is your name, maggot?"

    No answer.

    "If you don't tell me your name, I will have you recycled the second I step out of this room. Now tell me your name!"

    No answer.

    That made Lakas snap. Dashing to the being, the Major General grabbed its white medical gown and pushed it against the wall, its face only inches from his. As Lakas held the being up, the veins on his neck popped out, his face turning increasing red at the same time.

    "TELL ME YOUR NAME!" Lakas shouted at the being with a voice that could be heard from the other side of the base, but received no answer afterward.

    "TELL ME, YOU LOW PIECE OF TRASH!" the Major General continued to scream at the being, which only looked at the ground, where its shadow merged with Lakas'. Ignoring the demands of the old man, the being reached out to the shadow, as if to welcome it from its realm of darkness. While the being did this, the Major General continued to scream, until he saw what was happening with his shadow in the corner of his eye.

    The shadow had begun to rise up.

    Though it was thick and without definite shape, the shadow continued to climb up towards the being in Lakas' hands, who for the first time smile since its awakening. The Major General, watching the dark form as it rose, looked at the being once again, this time with a shocked expression, and asked only a simple question.

    "Who are you?"

    The being looked at the Major General with curiosity, but then greeted the shadow that had risen with his left hand, answering Lakas' question at last a few moments later.

    "My name is Aiden, and this is my shadow. Say hi, will you?" the dark-haired boy said to Lakas as he pointed to the darkness that was in his hand, which heavily contrasted the white medical gown he wore.

    It took all of Lakas' willpower not to drop the dark-haired boy. Staring at the boy and the shadow in his hand, the Major General almost began to laugh manically.

    The creation process was a success. The dark-haired boy had control over shadows.
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    Re: Chronicles of the Wraith - Aiden's Story

    Post  Jett-2213 on 17/7/2012, 1:00 pm

    Chapter Two – Birth

    The first thing I saw was light. The first thing I did was cry out.

    Having only just woken up, I became terrified of the bright light that illuminated the whole room, and before I knew it, two men dressed in unnaturally white coats grabbed me on both sides and held me down. With the sudden rush of pain and feeling going to my head, I continued to scream, only to have another man, the third in the room, hold my head as he tried to calm me down, speaking to me in a tone one would use to talk to a injured dog.

    "Oh-Nine-Thirteen. Settle down. You are safe. We are not going to hurt you." He said to me over and over again in an attempt to halt my sudden panic, the two men restraining me grunting at the increased effort. I was not paying any attention to any of them. All I wanted to do was to get away from the light, to hide from it. As I screamed at the top of my lungs, my eyes subconsciously closed, filling my mind with darkness.

    It was only then that I became as passive as I was before I had awaken.

    Seeing that I had finally calmed down, the men near me relaxed, the two holding me down to the table releasing from their grasps, a action appreciated greatly mostly by myself.

    As everything got silent, I marveled at the world behind my eyelids, the world with no light, and thus began to realize what was happening to me.

    'I am an Isotope. I was created to fight for an organization named Helli0n International. My enemies are those Helli0n declares as enemies. My serial number is Oh-Nine-Thirteen. Everything I know has been programmed into me…"

    Thinking that to myself, I soon felt overly bizarre inside, for I knew what words were, their meanings, and how to say them without even remembering how I came to learn them.

    "Oh-Nine-Thirteen, can you speak? How do you feel?" was what I heard the scientist from before say to me, his voice seemingly coming from above my head. I did not answer him, however, since I was so preoccupied in growing more and more confused with the sudden knowledge I had acquired upon awakening. So preoccupied, in fact, that I barely caught the sound of a door opening.

    "Dr. Anderson, Dr. Stupenski, and Dr. Razmuhin. You have been called to attend another Isotope in the next room. You are expected there by Major General Gibson ASAP. Do you need me to repeat what I have just said?" a command came from a woman's voice off to my right side, which was met by several 'Yes ma'ams.' And then followed by the rapid succession of footsteps that faded as the three scientists hurried to where they were needed, leaving me alone to further my confusion. Though I had begun to come to terms with my circumstances, I was brought out from my thoughts when I heard the door shut suddenly, the sound of footsteps nearing me as the seconds passed. Hearing this, I felt for the first time curiosity, and I knew what curiosity was, so to satisfy it I dared to open my left eye, but only a little bit, for I still felt a certain animosity towards the bright light bearing down on me. When I did so, I quickly turned my head to avoid the brightness above me, and by consequence found myself looking at the person still in the room.

    It was a girl in her late teens, with curly amber hair that caressed her cheeks every time she walked. Unlike the men from before, she had on only casual wear, a white short-sleeve shirt with long tan cargo shorts, marking her as either a civilian or a fellow Isotope.

    'Isotope. That's what I am…' I told myself again in thought as I observed the girl approaching, my eyes having adjusted to the light, which lessened my fears significantly.

    "Hello, Oh-Nine-Thirteen. My name is Alice-0834. I was asked to supervise you until the scientists get back." the girl whose name was Alice told me with a smile, closing the blue pools that were her eyes as she did. When she smiled, I became interested in the facial expression, and tried to mimic her face, which only resulted in her bursting suddenly from laughter.

    "Ahahaha! Your face! It's hilarious!" Alice said to me in between breaths while she held her sides, backing away a few steps as she fought to control herself. Immediately, I stopped making the expression, a sudden heat in my face causing me to think twice about what to do next. But oddly, I was not intimidated by the laughing girl. Though I had considered her bizarre right then and there, I preferred her company in contrast to the three men in white coats.

    "Hehehe… Okay, okay. I'm fine. I feel better now thanks to you. It's been too long that I have found something to laugh at." Alice said as she stepped closer to the table on which I laid, placing her hands on the edge once she reached its side.

    "So can you sit up, or do I have to talk to you like this all the time?"

    With that question, I immediately began to wonder if I even could lift myself off the table, since it would be the first time I would do so. Not wanting to disappoint the strange amber-haired girl, I tried to raise my upper body up, but only succeeded in falling back onto the table again. Next to me, Alice stiffened another laugh with her hand, looking away so that I would not see her face and thus not see her emotion. Frustrated, I tried again, but found similar results to the first time.

    'I must sit up!' I told myself in my mind as I attempted once more to lift my upper body up, only to feel my whole being begin to fall back onto the surface of the table. As I fell this time, one of my hands shot right behind me, stopping me from continuing the fall. Feeling the weight on that arm, I realized a trick to the action and place my other hand behind me too, and slowly began to lift myself up as I pushed off the table. Alice, seeing my success, stopped her giggling and looked back at me with the smile still on her face.

    "Good job, kid. Now can you tell me your name?" Alice asked me while she looked over my features as I did when she had entered. I, however, did not answer her, for the knowledge of a name was not evident in my mind yet. Instead I lowered my head in shame, a gesture she took as her response.

    "So they didn't name you yet? Well, that's unfair! Helli0n demands the immediate naming of all new Isotopes the minute they are created!" the amber-haired girl shouted out loud before beginning to pace back and forth in next to me, her two fingers on her chin while she walked. Watching the girl from my new sitting position, I caught something drawn on Alice's left arm, and when her left side was facing me, I began to study the picture more. It was a skeleton some sort of tool in its hands, one with a long handle and a giant curved blade at one end. Searching through my mind for a definition on what the tool was, I would nothing, which told me that they had not bothered to put that information in me. As I stared at the picture, it did not occur to me that Alice had stopped pacing. I only realized this when she suddenly exclaimed next to me, which made me jump in surprise.

    "I got it! I have a name for you! I will call you Aiden!" Alice announced, pointing her finger at me to further indicate that she was indeed talking to me. I only sat there quietly, without muttering a single word, as I tested the sound of my new name in my mind, and after a second, I realized that I did not mind being called Aiden.

    "Awww… You are smiling right now! You like it!" the amber-haired girl cheered while I looked away, not realizing that I had mimicked her earlier expression perfectly. Strangely, the sudden heat once again came to my face when she had pointed out that I had smiled. When I turned away, I was given the chance to observe the room I was in more thoroughly, and found that it was rather empty. The room itself was plain white, the walls were padded, the only furniture was the table I was sitting on, and the only object on the walls was a wide mirror that allowed me to actually see myself for the first time.

    My black hair hung down towards my face, covering most of my forehead as a result, and I wore a simple white gown. My eyes seemed out of place, being a light grey, and I seemed a little bit pale. Touching my cheek to make sure the image I was seeing was me, I heard Alice begin to say something, but was cut off by the sudden opening of the door behind her.

    "Banshee! We told you not to speak with Oh-Nine-Thirteen! Leave now!"

    The shouts came from a middle-aged man who had red hair and a beard to match, a white coat on his person also. Alice, responding to the name Banshee, turned away from me and shouted back at the man, which I did not catch, because my attention was directed to the thing under the amber-haired girl's feet.

    Her shadow.

    For some reason, I could not take my eyes off it. I was like I yearned for it, as if I knew that if I touched it, that I would be safe from anything. Oddly enough, as I stared at it, the shadow began to morph, which at first made me think that I was doing something, but then I realized that Alice had turned back around.

    "I guess I have to go, Aiden…" Alice began to say before the man interrupted her.

    "You gave him a name?!"

    Ignoring him, Alice continued.

    "I hope I get to see you again. You are a fun little guy, even though you don't talk much. Take care, and don't worry. These people will not hurt you. Laters."

    That were the last words I heard Alice say that day, and when she left, I jumped off the table and towards the door, following after her. However, the red-bearded man grabbed me before I could leave and pulled me back, closing the door with his free hand as he did.

    "No no. You can leave yet, Oh-Nine-Thirteen. We still have to run the tests…" the man said to me as he directed me back to the table. While I was being lead, I began to miss Alice's company, and found that I had begun to miss something else, too.

    Her shadow.
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    Re: Chronicles of the Wraith - Aiden's Story

    Post  Jett-2213 on 17/7/2012, 1:02 pm

    Chapter Three - 0ccult Division

    "Hurry up, Maggots! You got ten more laps to go!"

    Having just thrown up, I weakly looked up towards the wooden tower that stood in the distance, where my drill sergeant was seated in a nice comfy cushioned recliner with a microphone, a set of binoculars, and a nice cold beer on an end table next to him. I knew this because when we first started the exercise, the man so kindly showed us the platform on top of the tower and then ordered us to run down all of the steps of the tower (which was about ten stories high), and then do a hundred laps on the track field some yards away. Of course, we protested, but all complaints stopped when he told us that whoever came in last would go the whole week living on their own in the Forest.

    "Come on, Aiden! You don't want to be last, do you?"

    That shout came from Alice, who ran right by me with only a little sweat on her forehead. I, however, was drenched in my own.

    "B-be q-quiet…." I somehow managed to say back to the amber-haired girl before my stomach shot back my pitiful oatmeal breakfast up though my throat and out my mouth, covering the dying grass underneath me with vomit. As I gasped for air afterwards, I heard another voice yelling at me as the person it belonged to approached.

    "Yo! Little boy! This simple warm-up too much for ya?!"

    That little remark was made by Damien-0692, a Isotope who was older than Alice by a year, and older than me by nine. Alice had once told me that Damien was a Helli0n favorite, that wherever he went, he received the utmost respect from the other superhumans at location. She also told me that he was a great man, for he had saved a group of recently awaken Isotopes from a Jvstice War-Machine back when he was about my age.

    Though everyone liked him, I hated him with every fiber of my being.

    Every chance he had, Damien would always call me any name under the burning sun apart from my own, arguing later that he had a 'forgetful memory'. Not to mention that before I went to sleep every night, I had to check to see if my pillow was dry. Damien had a nasty little habit of 'spilling' his canteen on top of it once in a while. But those petty reasons were not why I detested the guy. You see…

    …Alice was in love with him.

    Back then I had a little harmless crush on Alice, since she was the first and only girl I had met at the time. At first, I was confused as to why I felt awkward around the amber-haired girl, but after discussing it with Damien (I know, I had already mentioned my undying hatred for the guy, but he was the only other person I was allowed to talk to in the secluded training facility they had us in. Hey, I never said it was pleasant. Thankfully, Damien kept my crush a secret, but only because he would later use it to blackmail me. Just keep reading. You will see what I am talking about.), I learned what I was feeling, and also that I should not tell Alice in any circumstances about it. Despite better judgment, I kept my mouth shut, but not without those close-calls. However, several days after I knew what it was to have a crush on someone, Alice confessed to me her undying admiration… for Damien.

    That definitely ruined that day.

    Finally recovering from my sudden vomiting, I somehow managed to continue running, and found that I was right sprinting right next to Damien, who had finally reached his limit. Looking at each other with weary eyes, we both began to run with more energy, the consequence of losing hanging over our heads like Death over a sick man. However, I was too young to keep up with the blonde jackass, so I started to fall back against my will, putting a smile on Damien's face as he reassured himself that I was going to be the one going into the woods. Gasping for air, I looked at how much more we had to run, and as I did so, I caught sight of Alice cheering us on from the finish line. Seeing her unlocked something in me, and once again I was next to Damien, running as fast as I could in my exhausted state of being. Damien, realizing that I had caught up, made the effort to run faster too, but we remained neck-to-neck. As we were about to reach the finish line, I pour the last of my energy into one last dash, and barely saw my foot hit the white line on the dark rubbery pavement an instant before Damien's foot. Dropping to the ground, I panted heavily as the loudspeakers that were located throughout the field boomed once more, the voice of our drill sergeant playing through.

    "Well done! But who came in last?" the beer-loving man asked us in his standard, loud voice through the speakers. Alice, who had ended first out of the three of us, only smiled as she stared at Damien and I, who were both on the ground, trying to recover our strengths.

    "That seemed to me like a tie. Since I didn't have a camera with me, I guess both of you will have to go to the Forest!" she joked before beginning to giggle to herself. As I stared at her lovely hair after catching most of my breath, I suddenly heard a voice talking to me inside my head. Instantly, I knew who it was. Damien, that jackass of a psychic.

    "Hey, pipsqueak. Listen. Tell Alice that you came in last." Damien said to me mentally, which I respond by talking to myself in my mind, knowing that he was listening.

    "What? Why would I do that? I don't want to go to the Forest!" I screamed in my head to myself, which Damien heard and reply to seconds later.

    "Yeah, well me neither, and I'm more important than you. I'm serious. Tell her that you came in last, or else I'll tell her about your little crush on her right now. You know I would really do it too."

    The minute Damien made his threat, my blood ran cold. Looking at the blonde Isotope, I shouted every curse I knew in my mind, all directed towards the damn psychic, before lowering my head and speaking out to Alice.

    "Alice, I… was the one who came in last." I muttered to the amber-haired girl, turning away from everyone, fighting back tears. Alice only stared at me in shock, dumbfounded to the fact that I had just admitted defeat. Damien, however, beamed as he stood up, suddenly full of energy again.

    "You hear that, Sergeant? The kid came in last!" Damien yelled up to one of the loudspeakers, which were also equipped with a microphone so that the drill sergeant could hear us from his tower. Moments later, the loudspeakers boomed again.

    "Alice-0834 and Damien-0692, congratulations on completing the exercise first. You may return to the barracks. Aiden-0913! You have failed the exercise! Report to VR room for immediate extraction! You are all dismissed!"

    --------

    The Forest was actually a virtual reality world that was used to test Isotopes in the 0ccult Division on their survival skills. Unlike other Isotopes, who were placed in squads, members of the 0ccult Division were mainly sent on solo missions, which made it essential that they knew how to survive in any type of terrain. However, when one is in the Forest, their minds are tricked into believing that they are in a different timeline. Say you were plugged in for a day. A day in the real world was a week in the Forest, a week a month, a month a year, a year a decade. Because of that, Helli0n banned the use of it for standard training. Unfortunately, the 0ccult Division of Helli0n did not specialize in 'standard' training.

    The 0ccult Division was a branch formed as a covert operation center for Helli0n International due to the increased frustrations of the public. Apparently, if civilians knew about every single battle or Operation that took place, they would lose what little sense of security they had left. That was why the 0ccult Division was made; to respond to attacks that could not be made known to anyone: Helli0n official, Isotope, or civilian based on severity.

    A week after I was awaken, I was assigned to the 0ccult Division.

    The first rule of being in the 0ccult Division; you are no one. Your existence was made a secret until you had finished training. The only exception was if you had already undergone standard training before being assigned to the 0ccult Division, which was the case for both Alice and Damien.

    The second rule of being in the 0ccult Division; You must never fail. If you were sent on a mission, you were expected to complete your task in any shape or form. If you did not succeed, then the consequences were severe.

    The final rule of being in the 0D? You lived and fought for Helli0n, and no one else. Not even yourself. If you are given an order by a Isotope General that contradicted the orders given to you by Helli0n, then you ignore the Isotope. Simple as that.

    However, because of these rules, only three Isotopes were recruited into the 0D this year.

    And one of them was rotting away in the Forest.

    Me.

    To me it was day three of being in the Forest, and already I had begun to lose resources. The native wildlife had run off with some of the berries I had picked for myself on my second day there. The only water that was available to me was two miles away, and it left my food without guardian.

    My shelter was pitiful. All it was was a fallen log that had dropped next to a small cliff, covered by giant leaves that acted as a roof for me.

    And I had four more days to go.

    Sighing deeply as I sat in the cool shade given to me by a giant oak, I looked over my person once again, remembering how I had gotten into the Forest in the first place. For the millionth time, I grew angry and cursed Damien's name, but then stopped when I realized that I was just being a bitter child.

    "It's my fault that I told him about what I felt about Alice. I should've known that he would do something like blackmail me…" I said to myself as I stared at the shade I sat in, feeling relaxed in the darkness of the tree's shadow. After I was tested, I had demonstrated my powers to one of the most important Isotopes out there, Major General Lakas, completely by accident. But somewhere inside me told me that I had called that shadow to approach my hand by my will alone, and it was something that made me curious about myself. The funny thing was that in the year I had been with the 0ccult Division, not once was I given the chance to use my ability. Now that I was alone in the Forest, however, I had plenty of time to practice. Contemplating what I had done a year ago, I hovered my hand over a clear spot in the shade and concentrated, imagining a blob like before slowly rising from the shadow. After a few seconds, nothing happened.

    "Come on. Don't tell me it was only a one-time thing!" I said out loud to the shadow I was sitting in, attempting to make another shadow blob rise with no success. After five minutes, I gave up, and turned to the sky, my hand dropping to the ground.

    "Why can't I do it anymore…?" I asked myself as I closed my eyes, tired out from the attempts. In a minute I had fallen asleep, and as I slumped off to the side, my fall was cushioned by the ground, which appeared to be swallowing me up whole.

    When I woke up, I was in darkness.

    "What the-?! Where am I?" I yelled to no one as I looked around, seeing nothing when I did. As I moved, I felt as if I was underwater, and yet I was able to breathe perfectly. Stopping, I dropped my eyes onto my body, and found that I was the only thing illuminated in that strange world. Though I should have been freaked out when I saw that, instead I only smiled. To this day I cannot remember why I had smiled. Maybe it was the fact that I was the only being in that world of darkness. Maybe it was the darkness itself. Nevertheless, it would take me an hour to finally look up and find the white spheres that lined the surface of the world, and a half hour to discover that each white sphere was a shadow from which I was able to exit out of. After some practice, I had claimed the shadow world for myself.

    Three days later, I was sitting on my fallen log of a bed with my hand outstretched to the nearest shadow around me, once again trying to summon some sort of darkness from it. After having learned almost everything about my shadow world, I began to train my shadow manipulation skills, but found that to be a lot more difficult than traveling through shadows. At first, I had aimed to create a blob of sorts just to start it off, but found that a more definite shape was needed, since every time I had attempted summoning a blob I only managed for it to rise an inch out of the ground before it broke apart and returned to its original state. As I continued to concentrate, I was unaware of the creature lurking on the top of the small cliff, which I had my back to. When I saw a sharp point rise out from the shadow, I instantly smiled with triumph, right about the same time the creature behind me pounce. Crashing into my back, I fell forward and had the wind knocked out of me, all the while the creature, which was a mountain lion that seemed extremely hungry, circle my fallen being to see what part of me it wanted first.

    I never gave it the chance to decided.

    Stunned from my fall, I lashed out with my right hand quickly towards the big cat attacking me, and to my surprise, four pitch-black spikes emerged from my shadow and impaled the mountain lion. As the beast cried out it final shouts of pain and agony before its life left it through the holes the spikes had made in its chest, I sat there, dumbfounded, having witnessed the whole thing. Looking at my hands, I slowly began to smile, and then to laugh, since that day had turned out to be so great. First I had summoned shadow objects from shadows, and I also had food for the rest of the day and for the following day.

    As I laughed to the virtual heavens upon, I, for the first time, felt alive.
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    Re: Chronicles of the Wraith - Aiden's Story

    Post  Jett-2213 on 17/7/2012, 1:04 pm

    Chapter Four – Reality

    Part One: The Flame-Haired Girl

    "Zzzzzzzzzzzzttt… 0913, do you have a visual?"

    "Negative. Hostiles still not present."

    "Zzzzzzzzzzzzttt… Very well. Stay hidden, 0913."

    "Affirmative. Isotope 0913, out."

    Closing the device I was speaking to, I relaxed my muscles and glanced around, the field before me as empty as the moon's surface. Letting myself slump back onto the tree behind me, I replaced my device, which was called a Comtran, back into my jeans pocket before sighing loudly, a sudden fatigue passing over me.

    This was my last training mission before I would be considered a full 0ccult Division Member. Once I finished the task given to me, I would be made introduced to the public, and be given a codename. Damien had completed the course only last year. Alice had already graduated from training a month before I first woke up, and had acted as our supervisor during the exercises.

    Remembering Alice, I fought down a wave of sadness as I became lost in thought. After Damien became a full 0D member, he and Alice were soon sent on a mission together, leaving me alone at base. Once they left, my training increased in brutality, and there was even a period of time where I had almost died due to injures sustained from a certain exercise involving a battle with a capture Halogen. However, that was three years ago. Back then, I was only a boy with the appearance of a nine year-old. Now, I was one with the appearance of a twelve-year old. I had already mastered traveling through the world I had discovered while at my stay in the Forest, and I could now summon spikes from any shadow in a five-foot radius from myself.

    Oddly enough, I did not receive word from neither Alice nor Damien in the three years following their reassignment.

    As I reminded myself of the crush I had on Alice, I couldn't help but smile, realizing how childlike I was back then. Reaching behind my neck, I grabbed the hood of the black sweater I was wearing and pulled it over my head, my small smile still present on my face. It was cold that night, being earlier October and all. Relaxing against the slowly warming bark behind me, I closed my eyes and prepared to take a short nap, grateful for the leaves that surrounded me in the tree.

    Then, I heard a twig snap on the ground nearby.

    Quickly and silently, I rose up to the proper sitting position to investigate what had made the sound, but the same leaves that kept out the wind blocked my view of the ground under me. Aside from the shadow spikes, I also had perfect night vision, a trait I knew of a day after I had awaken. However, my sight could not see through objects. Taking back my gratitude, I began to carefully climb down the tree, mindful of the possibility of being seen by the being that made the noise. Reaching the ground, I allowed myself to squat down and began to walk to where I heard the snap, remembering where every dark shadow was in case I needed to conjure up a counterattack. Not even a minute after I was on the ground, I heard another twig break, the noise causing me to halt all movement.

    Now, I would have been perfectly calm about it… had the twig not snapped right behind me.

    Spinning around instantly, I quickly commanded two spikes to shoot out of from my own shadow to pierce whatever was trying to sneak up to me.

    The two spikes only penetrated the cold fall air.

    Initial panic subsiding, I let my shoulders slump; all tension leaving my body only to be replaced by relief. Concluding that the twig was broken by my foot and not by a Halogen, I relaxed once again, and turned back to once again begin my search for the source of the original noise.

    Only to come face-to-face with two piercing emerald eyes.

    Now, when one is still in training in the 0ccult Division, one is taught never to scream, for it may compromise one's position. However, at that very moment, I came very close to ignoring that part of my conditioning. The only thing stopping me was the sudden rush of air followed by the hard impact of dirt as I stumped back in shock and fell over. Rolling thanks to the momentum, I ended up on my face, my back aching due to it breaking my fall. As I laid there dazed, laughter began to fill the night air.

    "Ahahaha! You should've seen your face! Ahahahaha! Priceless!" a female voice said to me, making me look up. Since my mind was still scrambled, my vision had become blurred, making it hard to accurately see the person in front of me even with my night vision. The woman who was laughing had red hair, making me mutter out a name in disbelief.

    "Alice?"

    The laughter suddenly stopped, and at the same time my sight cleared up, revealing the person in front of me perfectly, who had become furious in an instant.

    "Calling a girl the wrong name is rude, you know!" the girl shouted at me with a scowl, her long, almost fire-like curly hair falling behind her shoulders, allowing her attractive face to be fully seen.

    "Sorry abou-" I automatically began to say as I lifted myself off the ground onto all fours, stopping myself as I regarded the situation more thoroughly. Why was I apologizing to this girl? She was the one who appeared in front of me and started me. What was she even doing there in the middle of the night? Staring at the girl, I did not continue my apology, which seemed to irritate the flame-haired girl even further.

    "Well? Don't you have more to say? Hello? Hey I'm talking to you!" She yelled at me as she leaned forward to get my attention once again, since in the time she was ranting I had looked away to the side to check out our surroundings. When her face stopped only inches from mine, I turned back on a reflex, looking at her enchanting emerald eyes that seemed to only compliment her scowling expression. However, my peripheral vision soon caught sight of something under her chin, and looking down, I was soon staring at the opening the girl's shirt made due to gravity's effect on it, revealing a sight (amplified by my night vision) that somehow made my face flush red.

    Unfortunately, the girl noticed what I was staring at.

    "Creep!" She screamed at me as she moved her left hand to her chest to push the shirt closer to her skin, hiding the opening it had made, all the while raising her right hand in the air. Looking up, I only managed to don a confused expression before the flame-haired girl's hand came in contact with my left cheek at high speeds. Now, I had been hit before, and as part of 0ccult training, I was taught to withstand pain. However, that slap caught me off guard, and as a result I fell onto my side, holding my damaged cheek in shock. After that shock dissolved, I forgot everything my training forced into my brain.

    "What the hell is wrong with you?! Why did you hit me?!" I yelled at her in fury, still covering my left cheek, which had started to bruise. That girl had some strength.

    "You were looking down my shirt, you pervert!" She screamed back, having taken a step away from me after slapping my face. Her hands were now over her chest, as if to block it from my sight.

    "I wasn't!" I responded suddenly without thinking, an urge to deny her claim arising in my mind without explanation. "Besides, it's not like there's anything interesting to look at…." I muttered under my breath a little too loudly as I turned away, rubbing my bruised cheek at the same time. What was I saying? Why was I telling lies?! The words emerging from my mouth came from some abyss inside me that was unknown to me. However, at the same time, it reminded me of someone I knew. Oh no. I was becoming like Damien.

    "What was that, you stupid brat?! I want you to repeat what you just said to me right now!" the flame-haired girl screamed, furious about my little comment. Looking back at the girl, I opened my mouth to declare another lie about her appearance, only to stop, remembering where I was. Quickly, I dashed towards the girl and clamped my hand over her mouth, an act that looked ridicules considering that she was half-a-foot taller than me.

    "Waff arhh youf do'ng?! Gef youf hannf off meh! (What are you doing?! Get your hands off me!)" shouted the girl through my hand as she began to pound on me with her hands while I surveyed the area around us quickly. Luckily, there was no activity to be seen.

    "Will you be quiet?! There may be Halogens nearby!" I hissed at the flame-haired girl after bring my free hand up to defend myself from her blows, which lessened at the mention of Halogens. Glaring at the girl in the moonlight, I waited until her hand became still to talk to her once again.

    "Okay. I'm going to remove my hand now. Do not scream or talk too loud, okay?" I whispered to the girl, who nodded before I detached my hand from her face, only to be met by more blows.

    "H-Hey! Stop that!" I hissed as I once again brought my arms up to protect myself from the deranged girl, who whispered back her anger.

    "Don't you ever, EVER, do that to me again!" she exclaimed as she stopped her barrage of fists and began to adjust her clothing. "I'll make sure you regret it next time you try touching me without my permission!" she continued, her threat falling on deaf ears as I recovered enough of my wits to realize something important. She was the first person outside of the 0ccult Division that I had actually interacted with! Of course, there was the pilot of the helicopter that dropped me at the site, but I did not enter the cockpit to discuss with the man (or woman). I was strictly forbidden to. But now…

    "-are you?"

    I was taken out of my thoughts by the girl's voice, the last part of the question she had asked me the only thing that I heard. Puzzled, I kept my mouth shut, which made the girl repeat her question once again with an annoyed tone.

    "Hey! I asked who are you?! What are you doing here?" she said to me with her arms crossed, the dark green sleeves of her jacket receding a little to expose her wrists.

    "What am I doing here? What are you doing here?! You just appeared all of a sudden!" I said to the flame-haired girl who snarled at my response, moving her hands to her hips as she closed her eyes and moved her chin up, acting as a superior berating a subordinate.

    "If you must know, I'm an Isotope who is here on a secret mission for the organization known as Helli0n. Since you're a civilian, I must ask you to leave." She said in a manner that made me want to pierce her with multiple shadow spikes. Thankfully, I restrained myself, for the most part.

    "I'm not leaving. I'm also an Isotope. I was given a mission here too, and was told to complete it no matter at what costs. So if you excuse me, I must be heading back to my post. I can't let any Halogens get by unnoticed." I stated officially before turning around to walk back to the tree from earlier, only to be stopped by a few words.

    "Wait a minute. You're doing what I'm supposed to do! I was given that job!" she announced with confusion and shock, which made me match her expression of puzzlement equally. Why would the 0ccult Division send another Isotope to do my mission? Was she there to keep tabs on me? Was I supposed to protect her on top of my given orders? As both of us pondered how we were given the same mission, the cold wind decided to slam into us hard, making both the girl and I hunch up in our outerwear clothing.

    "Let's talk about this later. Right now we have to get out of this wind. Follow me." I said to the girl as I began to walk back to my shelter in the tree, only to have the girl yell at me once again.

    "Why would I follow a pervert like you?!" she shouted in disgust before another sudden gust of wind hit her, making her close her eyes due to the force of the freezing air.

    "Do you want to be stubborn and frozen or do you want to be someplace warmer?!" I responded back the best I could with the wind beating into my face, having only turned my head to talk back to the girl. The flame-haired girl stood there for a minute, her fiery hair flowing wildly as she contemplated her options, before she ran after me, stopping right behind me shivering.

    Reaching the tree, I pointed up to indicate to the girl where the shelter was, and she then proceeded in climbing it first. After her, I followed suit, and before long, we were both on the large branch I had claimed earlier on, our bodies finally stopping from shaking.

    "T-Thank you, pervert." The girl said to me as she avoided eye contact, her arms wrapped around her body to reclaim some lost warmth. She was obviously not glad to have accepted my offer to help. Leaning against the bark once again, I sighed loudly, the hood of my sweater still over my head.

    "My name is Aiden-0913, not 'pervert.' Remember that, Miss…" I stopped once I realized that I did not know her name, a lack of knowledge quickly filled by the flame-haired girl.

    "Molly. My name's Molly-0757. Don't forget that, pervert." The girl named Molly said to me with a sadistic smirk after she uttered the word 'pervert' once again, causing annoyance to arise in my mind as I brought my knees up to my face, looking at her fiery red hair once again. But strangely, there was only one negative thing I was feeling at the time. Perhaps it was the sensation of talking to a new person. Perhaps it was just the joy of having company. Whatever it was, in that cold windy October night, I was content.
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    Jett-2213
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    Join date : 2012-07-11
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    Re: Chronicles of the Wraith - Aiden's Story

    Post  Jett-2213 on 17/7/2012, 1:07 pm

    Chapter Four – Reality

    Part Two: Wraith

    Looking at the paper given to me, I could not help but stare at the text, confounded by what I was seeing. While I stood entranced by the letter, Alice's face was crimson from embarrassment, looking away from me with her hands behind her back. After another moment or two passed, I managed to open my mouth to speak, words laced with insecurity as I addressed what was written on the letter.

    "This… is a love letter." I said to Alice, asking to confirm something I already knew. Alice only nodded, still shy about the whole situation. However, she did respond back.

    "Y-Yes. That's a love letter… from me…" She reassured me before looking down to the floor, as if to hide her blushing face from my glance. The moment I heard her words, I nearly died from bliss.

    "Uh… Thank you. I will cherish this forever. And…" I said as I looked at the amber-haired girl, happiness radiating from me as I stepped closer to continue with what I had to say to her. Alice's face was still hidden by her hair as I finished what I had begun to say.

    "And I would like you to know that I feel the same… Molly." I finished saying before my jaw dropped to the ground, realizing what I had said. Alice suddenly jerked her head up once I had finished speaking and stared at me with shock, before turning around and running away, her cries audible as she disappeared from my sight. I only stood there, unable to follow her, unable to do anything. The damage was dealt.

    "Why did I say Molly? How could I do such a thing!?" I shouted at myself finally after five minutes had passed, Alice's letter dropping to the floor due to me letting go of it subconsciously as I fell to my knees on the ground, confused as hell. Seeing the dropped letter by the corner of my eye, I reached out to grab it, took hold of it, and brought it in front of me, reading it once again.

    'I cannot quench your thirst, because you who want the truth will not acknowledge it.

    I cannot quench your thirst, because the truth you hope for doesn't exist.

    Even so, I want to quench your thirst, because I am the one who left you in the desert.'

    "What?" I yelled as I flipped the letter around to look for the original text that I had read first, only to discover that the only words on the piece of paper were the ones I had just read. Dropping the letter once again, I grabbed my head in frustration as I tried to make sense on what was happening. Suddenly, I felt two arms wrap themselves around my neck, pulling me from the ground so that I was standing once again. Stunned, I looked at the arms that were around my neck, and somehow I knew that they belonged to a woman. Blinking a few times, I began to turn my head to see who was the woman who had me in a backwards embrace, only to be met by bright light…


    --------------------------------------------

    Opening my eyes, I quickly rose up from the tree trunk behind me, for a second forgetting where I was. Breathing heavily as sweat ran down my forehead, I looked around frantically. I was sitting in the same tree that overlooked an open field, which I had decided to be my post during my mission.

    'It was all a dream…' I told myself in my mind as I stretched my arms and back, falling back onto the warm bark that belonged to the tree. Exhaling, I closed my eyes once again to regain some stability in my brain, but suddenly felt a weight fall onto my left shoulder. Snapping alert, I quickly turned my head to look at what had fallen onto my shoulder, only to be greeted by fire-like curly hair, which belonged the girl who was sleeping next to me. Hesitating, my eyes widened at the fact that the flame-haired girl had rested her head on me, and my hand shot up to cover my mouth before I could yell out in surprise. As if sensing my sudden gestures, the sleeping girl opened her eyes and raised her head from my shoulder as she rose up in a similar fashion as I had a few minutes ago, rubbing her eye while she did so. Still stunned, I only sat there as the girl turned back to look at me, her eyes still holding remnants of sleep as she yawned.

    "What's for breakfast, Pervert?" she said, after her yawn, to me, blinking a few times to rid herself of the remnants of sleep.

    Losing my shocked expression and adopting a scowl, I crossed my arms; giving her the same answer I had told her for the last five days.

    "I am not a pervert. And if you want to eat, go catch something to cook, Molly."

    Once I finished my sentence, Molly gave me the same response I had heard every time I told her to hunt for food.

    "I am a lady, pervert. YOU go get food, or else I'll turn you into a mouse again." She threatened, which was met by my angry scowl as I began to climb down the tree, on my way to hunt for food. Again.

    Reaching the ground, I began to walk into the field, a shout from Molly following me.

    "Don't take too long like last time! I'm starving!"

    "Yeah, yeah. Be quiet." I muttered as I continued to walk among the flowing uncut grass of the field, which reached up to my shin. Honestly, if she weren't able to turn people into small objects, I would be the one back in the tree, relaxing. However, thanks to the fact that she ate all of the rations given to me in the first two days we were together, and that I was turned into a mouse for a day after yelling at her, I have lost all authority and was reduced into a servant. Remembering how it felt as a little rat, I felt a chill run down my spine, a desire to not go through that experience again arising in my mind as I stopped in my tracks and sat down on the grass, taking out a device from my pocket as I did so.

    "This is Isotope 0913, reporting in. Can anybody copy?" I said into my Comtran after inputting a code, waiting for a response back. None came.

    "I repeat; this is Isotope 0913, reporting in. Can anybody copy?" I said again to my device, once again being greeted with nothing but static. Two more times I tried, but the same thing happened; no one answered. Frustrated, I put away the Comtran, my expression sour. Since the day Molly appeared to me, HQ had not contacted me in any way, and every time I tried to communicate with them, I was given no answer but white noise. Rubbing the bridge of my nose as I took a deep breath, I began to think about the flame-haired girl, and then about my dream.

    "Why did I say her name instead of Alice's? What was I thinking?" I said to myself quietly as the cold October wind flowed calmly over the field, creating waves in the grass. Observing the beautiful phenomenon, I continued to think about those words on the letter, and what they were supposed to mean.

    "I cannot quench your thirst, because you who want the truth will not acknowledge it.

    I cannot quench your thirst, because the truth you hope for doesn't exist.

    Even so, I want to quench your thirst, because I am the one who left you in the desert."


    Reciting the whole message, I closed my eyes, allowing for my mind to run rampart.

    'What does this all mean? Is there something I am missing, something obvious? '…You who want the truth will not acknowledge it'. What is that truth that I desire? And the truth that I hope for but does not exist… what do I want to believe to be true? And… who was the woman who was hugging from behind? Was she the one 'who left me in the desert'?' I thought to myself before remembering something.

    'Wait… I know this saying. I read it once, during training. We were learning about the human consciousness.' That seemed to me, at the time, a strange topic to learn. 'Who wrote it? Someone whose initials were FB... Frederica B-something… Anyways, why did I remember that? Why was that in my dream?' I continued debating in my mind for a while longer, before I heard a rustling near me. Opening my eyes slowly, I saw the head of a rabbit sticking out of the grass, looking around for something. Stock still, I muttered a small apology before a thin shadow spike appeared in front of the rabbit and impaled its neck, snapping the spine and killing it instantly. Taking a deep breath, I stood up and retrieved the dead critter, grateful that there was not that much blood this time.

    "I can see why Molly doesn't want to hunt…" I said to myself before sitting down again, waiting for another rabbit or a bird to get near.

    --------------------------------------------

    Morning came and went, and Noon did the same. Sitting at the base of the tree that served as my bed the last few nights, I looked at the setting sun, silently taking in the beauty that covered the dusk sky. Dark clouds had appeared over the field, but somehow avoided the horizon, where the lowering sun turned the sky a fading orange and red. Hearing something approaching me from the side, I quickly turned my head to see it, only to see Molly approaching, who flinched at my sudden movement.

    "Um… mind if I join you?" She said to me in a careful tone. Relaxing back into the tree, I nodded, and looked out to the sky once again. Molly sat down next to me, and did the same.

    "I still can't believe it. Who would've guessed that my Keywriter back home would intercept your mission briefing, huh Pervert? I honestly thought that I was chosen to do a special mission for Helli0n, you know? That explains why the pilot of the plane that got me here looked so confused when I told him." She announced out loud before looking at me to see my reaction, only to find that I was too occupied looking at the sunset. Getting irritated, she looked away and closed her eyes, raising her chin the same way she always does when she demands something.

    "Anyways, my point is that I'm not supposed to be here. But since neither of us is able to contact base, I have had to wait until your mission has ended. So tell me, Pervert; when does your mission end? When can you get to go home?" Molly asked as she opened her right eye to look at me, a small frown evident on her face.

    "Why are you in such a rush to get back home? Is it because you want to see someone?" I finally replied back, answering her question with another question, which seemed to only frustrate her more.

    "Of course I want to see someone! The only person I can talk to here is you, Pervert! And you aren't exactly the best of company!" She yelled at me as she crossed her arms, closing her eyes once again.

    "I would say the same for you. Tell me, the person you want to go back to see. Is it a man?" I asked Molly, puzzled as to why I wanted to know whom she wanted to go see, and why I was so interested if the person was a man. Molly, in response to my question, opened her eyes and looked at me with irritation, answering my question at the same time.

    "You would ask, you pervert! But if you must ask, the person I want to see is not a guy. She's my little sister."

    Detaching my glance from the sunset, I looked back at Molly, intrigued at what she said.

    "Little sister? I thought we were all born in tubes. How can you have a sibling?" I asked, my right eyebrow rising afterwards with curiosity. Molly, in return, gave me a reply that seemed to have been used before countless times by the way she said it.

    "They used some of the same DNA in both! Our eggs were donated from the same woman! That makes us siblings." Molly said, keeping her eyes on me and her arms crossed.

    "I never thought that that would count… What's your little sister's name?" I inquired back, now captivated by this tale of an Isotope having a sibling.

    "It does make us siblings! She's my little sister an- Wait, what did you say?" Molly shouted before catching herself, looking at me with puzzlement.

    "I asked what your little sister's name was." I told her.

    "Oh! Well, um… her name is Paulina…." Molly said hesitantly, which lead me to believe that she was used to arguing her case against other people about her having a sister.

    "Paulina, huh? How is she like?" I asked the flame-haired girl, resting my head against the bark behind me as I did.

    "Well, she is the cutest thing you will ever see! Though not as cute as me, of course… Wait, now that I think about it, she looks about your age. Anyways, she's an Isotope too, but she doesn't have to work as hard as others. I should introduce her to you once we get out of here. What base are you stationed at?" Molly asked me, a smile appearing on her face, replacing the frown that was there a few minutes ago, which had moved to my face when she asked where my base was. Looking away from her and to the ground in front of me, I sighed, giving her an answer.

    "Even if I told you, you wouldn't know where it is. I'm part of a group called the 0ccult Division. My existence… has been kept a secret from everyone. Because of that, I know no one outside of the group. There are other members, but I have not seen them for a long time. I have been alone for the last three years. Training alone, eating alone, being alone. One never gets used to it. After this mission, however, I will be introduced to the other Isotopes, but I doubt any of them will greet me with open arms. I am a shadow, after all. No one notices a shadow." I said to Molly, sadness lining every one of the words that left my mouth. For a minute, the flame-haired girl said nothing, and I thought that she was probably thinking how pathetic I was. But then, I felt a hand on my shoulder, and as I turned my head to look at it, I saw Molly looking at me, her mood as blue as mine.

    "I don't know what to say to you being part of that secret group, but… I'll help you fit in. I can't imagine how bad you must've felt when you were alone, but I know that I would hate it if no one would talk to me. So I will help you out. I will make people notice this shadow next to me." Molly promised me, determination in her voice. My eyes wide with surprise and my face warm, I looked at the girl next to me, and could tell that my initial impression of her was false. A small smile playing on my lips, I nodded to the flame-haired girl, putting my hand over hers.

    "Thank you. You know, I was wrong abou-." I began to say before I notice a dark spot appear on the bark of the tree right next to my head, which grew larger with the second. Looking back in front of me, I saw a giant boulder fly towards where Molly and I were sitting, approaching fast.

    "Grab on!" I yelled at Molly, who had also seen the boulder approaching around the same time I had. Grabbing her shoulders, I threw myself into the enlarging shadow of the rock, pulling Molly in with me. As the two of us entered my shadow world, the boulder crashed into the spot we had only just left, causing the tree to tilt forward from the force of the impact.

    As I opened my eyes, I looked at Molly, who was holding me in a death grip. It must've been frightening to her, entering a world of complete darkness. Most people could not endure such conditions. Looking up to where I knew the ceiling to my world was, I located the red sphere that we had come out from and proceeded towards the white sphere next to it, swimming through the water-like space that filled the area. As I pulled Molly and myself through the white sphere, a flash of color greeted me, which told me that I was back in the normal world. Looking around, I realized that I was in the shadow of the tree we were sitting in front of a few seconds ago, and as I moved my eyes to Molly to check up on her, I found her shivering, her hands gripping my sweater, her eyes wide from being in complete darkness. Opening my mouth to ask her if she was all right, I stopped myself from speaking once I heard a voice booming from the other side of the giant tree, shouting orders.

    "Alright beasts! I want you to remove the rock I threw from there! I want to make sure I got the two!"

    The voice was male, but there was something about it that made my skin crawl. Dragging Molly and myself closer to the tree, I looked around the tree to see who the person who had spoken was, careful not to be seen at the same time. However, what I saw made my blood run cold.

    A dozen rotting corpses were approaching the tree. Halogens. Bringing my head back into the unseen part of the tree, I spoke to Molly, who had stopped shaking for the most part.

    "Molly, stay here. There are Halogens on the other side of the tree. I will take care of them. Don't make a sound as I fight them, okay?" I said to her, detaching my sweater from her grasp as I stood up and leaned against the tree, coming up with a strategy. There were twelve Halogens, and one of me. Remembering my first battle against one of those undead creatures, I felt a chill go down my spine, but fought off that feeling of despair. I had underestimated that Halogen. I would not do so for these ones. Jumping out into my enemy's sight, I quickly conjured up two spikes, each impaling two Halogens to their shadows. The rest stopped in their tracks to registered what had happened, and before long they charged at me, moaning with their mouths open and drooling, backs to the setting sun. That was a mistake on their part. Concentrating, I summoned multiple spikes from the shadow of each Halogen, stabbing into them easily. However, they only were only halted from moving from their spots. Each one of the Halogens struggled against the spike that pinned them, slamming into the solidified shadows with their fists and legs. Clinching my teeth, I fought to keep the spikes erect, until I heard the same voice from before shout from behind the undead beasts.

    "Stand down! I want him for myself!"

    At the sound of the voice, all of the Halogens dropped their arms and stood in place, frozen. Blinking a few times, I allowed the shadow spikes to sink back into their darkness, which let the Halogens back away. It was then that I saw the source of the voice that commanded them. It was a muscular man, almost like a bodybuilder, who would have been bald… had the skin on his head not rotted away. Looking at his hands, I saw that some of his fingers were just bone, but there were pieces of pale flesh still on him. Taking a step back, I felt my breathing quickening, realizing who the person standing before me was.

    He was one of the Originals, one of the first 459 Halogens.

    "Ello, boy. It seems that you survived my rock. Good job there. Now, let me introduce me self. I'm called Helium. A pleasure to a-meet ya." The Original, or rather Helium, said to me with a grin on his face. Or was that just the natural formation of the skull underneath?

    "The pleasure is all yours." I shot back as I conjured up another spike from Helium's shadow, aimed at his head. The Halogen Original only reached out, grabbed the spike, and quickly tore it in half. My eyes widening, I watched as the muscular man approached, clapping slowly as he did.

    "Good job, boy. You know to aim for the head. I'm impressed. I even liked that snappy remark, too. But… I'm afraid that I must put you six feet under. You see; you are in my way. You understand, right?" Helium said to me as he continued to approach, the grin still on his rotting face. Fighting to stay calm, I concentrated my mind and commanded multiple spikes to erupt from the Original's shadow, all impaling him. Looking at the undead man, I suddenly felt a drop of water fall on my cheek. The dark clouds above were finally dropping the loads of rain they held. The sun had already disappeared, giving way to night. Ignoring the increasing number of raindrops falling down, I looked at the Halogen Original, who only continued to grin.

    "Now, now. You made a missstaaaakeee… you didn't aim for me head!" Helium shouted as he slammed his fist into all of the shadow spikes, shattering each one. I didn't even have time to try to keep them solid. As the Halogen Original broke free, I only stood there, frozen, as the muscular man reached me, towering over me. Even if I had a copy of myself on my shoulders, he would still be taller.

    "Too afraid to move? No worries. I'll just have to move you myself!" Helium shouted as he cocked his fist, crouching down to slam it into my stomach. After I took the hit, it seemed as if I was moving in slow motion. Floating away from the man's fist, I saw blood come out from my mouth, and I felt the ground come meet me as I slammed into it hard, rolling back so that I ended up face down in the now wet grass. As I laid there, I rose my head up to look at the man, the pain in me so overwhelming that I was numb all over, my vision coming in and out of focus as I fought to remain conscious. Looking at the Halogen Original as he approached to finish the job, I tried to raise myself up, only to fall back down, the strength inside me having left the moment the fist connected. Gritting my teeth, I looked up, and saw the bony grin of the man over my face.

    "You Isotopes should have never been born into this world…" Helium said to me before raising his foot up, ready to smash my head in. My mind fleeting, I could only look at the foot, but not move away.

    'No… This can't be it… I can't die here… was I just born to die pathetically?!' I managed to ask myself before shutting my eyes, awaiting the blow that would end my short life. It's strange, though, when you know you are about to die. You find a certain peace inside yourself, as if you finally have learned to accept everything before you leave the world.

    However, after a few seconds, I heard a scream from the man over me.

    "THE HELL?! YOU TURNED MY FOOT INTO A RAT!"

    My eyes snapping open, I saw Molly, her fire-like curly hair wet and plastered onto her face, fear in her eyes but determination in her expression, standing a few feet away from Helium and me. Next to me was a dead rat, and next to that, an angry Halogen Original.

    "Aiden! Stand up! You can't die yet! You still have a life to spend! Don't you want to meet other people? Don't you want to see the other members in your group? Don't you want me to help you? Stand up, Aiden!" Molly shouted to me, tears falling from her face, as she looked back at Helium, frightened out of her mind. Looking at her, I opened my mouth to respond, but only one word came out.

    "M-Molly…"

    "…I WILL KILL YOU!"

    Feeling a sudden rush of wind past me, I saw Helium charge at Molly, still quick even without a foot, and slam his fist into Molly's chest. I only laid there, eyes wide, as time slowed again, as Molly flew back from the blow. Watching her body hit the ground, I was too shock to do anything. As I saw her unmoving body laying on the ground a yard away, tears fell from my eyes, as something in me snapped.

    "MOLLY!!!"

    --------------------------------------------

    Suddenly, the dark-haired boy stood up, all pains and agonies forgotten, a crazed look in his eyes as he glared at Helium, who was still angry at the flame-haired girl.

    "What? You're up already? I should've have hit you hard- ugghhhh!!!"

    Aiden didn't let Helium finish his sentence, having stopped it with a shadow spike right to the Halogen's jaw. Helium stood there stunned for a minute, before grabbing the spike and shattering it, the rain running down the hole made in the bottom of his chin as he yelled at the dark-haired boy.

    "DAMN YOU, YOU LITTLE PIECE OF SHI-!!!" Helium began to say before a barrage of spikes impaled into him, stopping him from talking once again. The grin on his face now out of place due to the furious look in his eyes, Helium grabbed one of the spikes.

    "YOU THINK THIS LITTLE TWIG WILL STOP ME?!!!" he screamed as he tightened his grip on it, attempting to break it. However, it remained solid.

    "WHAT?!" Helium exclaimed before looking back at the dark-haired boy, who only stood there, the same crazed look still present. Growling, Helium watched as the boy extended his left arm away from him, his hand open as if ready to catch something. Noticing that the boy's shadow was right under the same left arm, Helium's eyebrows, or what was left of his eyebrow, furrowed as he watched a spike arise from the shadow, heading directly into the hand of the dark-haired boy.

    'What is he doing? Wait a minute, WHAT THE?!' Helium thought to himself as he witnessed why Aiden was grabbing the spike, his eyes now wide at the scene before him.

    There stood Aiden, his eyes crazed, a scythe from his shadow now in his hand.

    Suddenly filled with fear, Helium looked back towards the Halogens he commanded, and shouted at them.

    "DON'T JUST STAND THERE! ATTACK! ATTACK THE BOY!" Helium yelled before slamming his fist into the spikes that pinned him to the spot, trying to break free. The spikes held, and Aiden began to walk slowly towards the Halogen Original.

    By then, the dozen Halogens reached the dark-haired boy, and charged at him, teeth and claws ready to rip the boy apart. However, Aiden lashed out with his scythe, and without even removing his eyes from Helium, managed to cut the first four Halogens right in half. As Helium watched, Aiden continued to swing his scythe, decapitating the other Halogens easily with his new weapon, their green blood splattering on the dark-haired boy, who only continued to walk. Not even a minute later, all twelve Halogens laid on the ground, their bodies unmoving. His mouth hanging open, Helium once again tried to smash through the spikes, but once again the spikes would not allow him to escape, not even when Aiden reached the Halogen Original and stood before him, scythe at hand.

    "W-What… WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU?!" Helium shouted at the boy, who only continued to stand in front of the Halogen, his black hair hanging down over his face. Lashing out with his fist, Helium tried to hit the boy himself, but found that he could not reach. Terror now blinding him, the Halogen Original continued to pound on his restraints, only to stop the instant he heard laughter. Looking from the spikes, Helium looked at the dark-haired boy, who had begun to laugh like a mad man right in front of him. After a minute of laughing, Aiden suddenly stopped, a grin now on his face.

    "Do you remember what you told me? About my mistake?" Aiden said to Helium in an eerie, cold voice; one that which left Helium speechless and unable to answer out of terror.

    "You don't remember? Oh, well. Then let me remind you." Aiden continued as he raised his scythe over his head, revealing his eyes as he did so, showing once again the crazed eyes. Helium only stared into those deranged grey eyes, his eyes wide and shaking from their glance.

    "Do you remember now? YOU TOLD ME TO AIM FOR THE HEAD!" the dark-haired boy laughed as he brought the scythe down.

    --------------------------------------------

    I woke up lying on the grass, the rain falling onto my face.

    Sitting up, I was soon met with a wave of agony from my stomach, and I cried out, holding it as I did, my eyes shutting closed at the same time. Waiting for the pain to subside, I opened my eyes once again, and stood up, my body protesting as I did.

    I was shocked to see what was around me.

    There was a corpse everywhere around my immediate area, all Halogen bodies without heads. Stunned beyond belief, I took a step forward, only to have my foot hit something on the ground. Looking down, two yellow eyes stared up back at me, a grin on the rotting face of the Halogen who used to be called Helium. The minute I saw the head, I quickly turned away and vomited, the scene too cruelsome. Taking deep breaths, I ignored the smell of rotting flesh around me, trying to remember what had happened.

    'I blacked out after Helium hit… MOLLY! Where is she?!' I shouted to myself in my mind as I looked around for her, finding her in the same spot she had landed on after Helium punched her chest. Ignoring all protests my body made, I ran towards the flame-haired girl, stumbling a couple of times along the way.

    "Molly! Molly, I'm here! Wake up!" I shouted to the girl after I reached her and knelt down next to her, checking her pulse. It was weak, but it was there.

    "Damn it! I have to get to a hospital! But-!" I said to myself before I heard a ding from my pocket. Reaching into it, I pulled out my Comtran, its scene flashing. Clicking a button, the scene on my Comtran change, revealing a detailed map to the nearest city.

    'How did… Never mind!' I told myself in my mind as I grabbed Molly once again, pulling her closer to me. Concentrating, I allowed myself to sink into my shadow once again, bringing the unconscious Molly with me.

    --------------------------------------------

    As I walked down the empty streets of the city, I looked around for a hospital or a Helli0n base, balancing Molly on my back as I did. To anyone nearby, I would have just been a boy giving a girl a piggyback ride. However, if one looked closely, they would have seen green liquid straining the boy's sweater and that the girl was unconscious.

    While I looked, I felt the arms around my neck tighten, telling me that Molly was awake.

    "Molly! Can you hear me?" I said back to the flame-haired girl, not once stopping.

    "…A-Aiden…?" a weak voice that resembled Molly's replied back, the movement of her mouth moving some of my wet hair.

    "I'm here, Molly. We're going to get you help. Don't worry." I said to reassure her, but found that uncertainty had corrupted the words I spoke. Molly, probably having known it all along, hugged my neck tighter.

    "…A-Aiden… I-I'm so sorry… I should have been more careful… now look at me… do you think that… that Halogen… had super strength…?" Molly said back to me as I slowed my pace, thinking about what she said.

    "He probably did… Don't be sorry, Molly. You saved me. I will make sure you get the help you need." I told her before walking faster, determination on my exhausted face. Thankfully, Molly was light to carry.

    "…Aiden… if I don't make it…" Molly began, only to be interrupted by me.

    "Don't talk like that. You will make it. I promise."

    "…But… in case I don't… please… please… tell Paulina… that I love her… that she is… a good little sister…"

    "Molly! Please! You can her that yourself."

    "…Tell her… not to blame herself… and… to be strong…"

    "Please Molly! Don't talk!"

    "…And… Aiden… I'm… so sorry… for not… being able… to help you…please… forgive me… and… don't hate me…"

    It was then that I stopped in my tracks, my head down, my wet hair hiding my crying eyes.

    "Molly. I will never hate you. You were the first person I had met away from my cell. You were the person who made the last few days some of the happiest in my life. For that, I thank you. For that, I will not allowing you to die. I want to become human, not remain a shadow, and I want to do so with you." I said to Molly, fighting my tears as I did. Behind me, I felt some drops of water fall on my back, even though it was no longer raining.

    "…Thank you… Aiden… for… not leaving me… in the desert… Thank you…."

    After Molly said those words, her body suddenly went limp, and I began to sob openly, even though I knew that she was still breathing. After ten more minutes of searching, I found a Helli0n base, and placed Molly in front of the main entrance, placing my forehead on her's as if to say my last goodbye. Removing myself and taking a few steps away, I conjured up a shadow spike from Molly's shadow, breaking the main doors, which were made out of glass. Because of this action, the alarms on base went wild.

    Taking one last look at Molly, I closed my eyes, and began to walk away, disappearing into the shadow of the night.

    Disappearing back into the desert that Molly had left me in.

    --------------------------------------------

    "As of this moment, Isotope 0913, you have been recognized as a member of the 0ccult Division. Rejoice, for all of your training has paid off." A voice said to Aiden, as he stood before a giant podium, similar to a judge's seat, where three people sat, each hidden by darkness. However, due to the dark-haired boy's sight, the Helli0n official were forced to blindfold him, since the identities of the three people there were to be kept a secret. The voice that had spoken to Aiden belongs to the person on to the right, and belonged to a man. Aiden did not show any emotion.

    "Ah, it seems that they taught this boy well. Look, he doesn't even respond to us." A rather young female voice said to its companions from the left, stating an observation that was addressed by the person from the right again.

    "You are right, but it is expected from the 0D. It just goes to show that they have done their job." The man's voice said, met by an approving mummer from the left side.

    "Good to see that our funds are not being wasted. I mean-."

    "May I speak?" Aiden asked out loud, interrupting the voice from the left. A silence following, Aiden waited until the voice from the right broke it, answering his question.

    "Very well. You may, Isotope 0913." The voice said, curiosity lining every word spoken.

    Clearing his throat, Aiden looked up to look at the Three, his blindfold preventing actually seeing them, and began to talk, his words and tone serious.

    "While I was in the field for my final mission, I went with a certain Isotope. This certain Isotope was given the same mission as I was. Because I did not have the knowledge or means or right to go return her to a nearby base, I was forced to endure most of a week with her. However, during those days, I found to think of her as a comrade, and I was looking forward to spending more time with her. That did not happen. Approximately two days ago, we encountered a Halogen Original named Helium, who had superhuman strength, along with a dozen newborn Halogens. After we fought, I was dealt a blow and was about to be eliminated until the other Isotope with me managed to save me, though in doing so was also dealt a blow. After that, I blacked out. When I came to, I found that all of the hostiles present, including Helium, were exterminated. I ask, did the 0D or Helli0n have anything to do with that?" Aiden asked the Three, a hint of frown on his face after finishing. For some time, the Three were silent again, but then the voice from the left spoke out, giving Aiden another answer.

    "Helli0n nor the 0ccult Division had any part in their extermination." She said, which made the frown on Aiden face grow.

    "You can't be serious! How about the directions to the town!? Only the 0ccult Division has my Comtran code! Don't tell me that you were just waiting for Molly to die! Don't give me a half-ass answer!" Aiden shouted at the Three, now angry for answers.

    "You are talking out of line right now, Isotope 0913. We will not discuss this any further until after this ceremony." The voice from the right said to the dark-haired boy before speaking again, this time to the central. As he spoke, Aiden brought his head down in shame, his teeth clenched.

    "Well, sir? Care to finish this off?"

    Another long silence appeared once again, but this one was broken by the voice of an elder, which came from the central of the three.

    "Isotope 0913. As a new member of the 0ccult Division, you must once again swear your loyalty to Helli0n. Will you live for, fight for, and die for, Helli0n, Isotope? Will you protect humanity, and eliminate any threats to its existence? Will you throw away anything and everything for Helli0n, from your name to your life? What say you, Isotope 0913?" The elderly voice said down to Aiden, who stood there, composed, before saying his answer, the frown still on his face, his voice laced with hostility.

    "I will do everything I am expected to do and more."

    "Very well then," the central voice said, taking a breath before continuing. "From this point on, Isotope 0913, you shall be known as a guardian of Helli0n and humanity.

    For now on, you shall be known as… Wraith."

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      Current date/time is 14/12/2018, 2:49 pm