Eclipse Star: Genesis Chapter Twenty-Five and a Half

March 2, 2009 at 11:50 am (Eclipse Star: Genesis) ()

Eclipse Star: Chapter Twenty-Five and a Half

“Journal Entries vol. 2”

 

Derek:

 

            Well, my dues have been paid and now it’s time to demonstrate just how far ahead I’ve become.  We spent the last two weeks in the middle of the desert being taught by some weird hermit how to fly and control Pulse more efficiently, and now we’re finally deadly.  I was amazed just how much Jack had been withholding from us in terms of energy combat.  It’s so simple, too.  He purposefully fed us false information in hopes that it’d stifle our progress.  It’s because he’s scared of us; he’s scared of me.  Then again I don’t particularly blame him for being apprehensive around me.  I can at least sympathize and understand how he must feel going from underdog prodigy to outclassed wannabie in a few short months.  He used to be the Legion’s secret Golden Boy, capable of things he wasn’t supposed to do, but now he’s far outmatched next to me and the others.  I’ve seen the way he looks at me and Chris.  He’s aware that should either of us come to the conclusion that Jack’s worthless there’d be nothing stopping us from pushing him aside and taking his spot as that coveted Golden Boy.

            I’ve made some progress with my thoughts as well these two weeks.  During the day my body was being trained and conditioned, but at night I was setting my mind in order.  I’ve been toying with some concepts, trying to figure out how to play them off, running figures in my head, and I’ve come to terms with them.  Kevin brought up my relationship with my father not too long ago, and it got me thinking.  “Weakness is unforgivable.”  My father’s words.  He taught me how important both physical and inner strength can be.  He even went so far as to demonstrate when they fail.  He failed when he had his masculinity taken from him in front of me, but he succeeded in the lesson he’d hoped to teach me.  Yes, I’m sure of it now, the whole thing was planned.  He wanted me to see he wasn’t indestructable.  Of course, it’s so obvious.  How could I be strong when I’m just the offspring of someone stronger?  I could rely on him too much and that’d make me weak.  That’d make me my mother.  No, by breaking down in front of he, he forced me to realize that I had to be my own strength.  I couldn’t get help from anywhere.  It had to be me and me alone in everything.  The group is just a formality until I can make everyone aware of my rightful place.  This world is going down the wrong path, and the Legion is in dire need of salvation.  They need a real Golden Boy, one who isn’t afraid to show that he doesn’t need them anymore.  They need me to force them to see their shortcomings.

            The events at the Regime’s base still bother me.  None of it makes sense.  None of it adds up.  Perhaps the Legion was giving us a lesson similar to my father’s?  “You can’t rely on anyone but yourself.”  Yes, it’s possible, but it’s only fair I return the sentiment.  The lesson was pushed too far when everyone was separated.  Haven’t seen anyone else since we split, so it’s just been me, Kevin, and Danny alone in the desert with the hermit.  For all I know the others are dead and gone.  Or in hiding.  I’d be surprised if I see Chris again.  But Jack…I suspect he’ll appear again when I’d rather not be expecting him.  Or better yet, when I am anticipating him to show up.  I’ve already proven that Chris is not my equal, but Jack still needs to learn this fact.

            There’s only one piece of the puzzle I’ve yet to fit together.  What was that blue light the night we got split up?  Was that the Regime’s doing?  Or was that one of our own?  There’s no way it could have been Jack, but could it have been…?  No, there’s no way Chris could generate something like that.  I can hardly generate that now after my training, he wouldn’t be able to push that deep into his reservoir without severe consequences.  Though, I’ve felt exactly how deep he can go.  Back in the tournament, holding onto him as he began to reach deeper and deeper…I won’t go so far as to say I was scared.  However, I was extremely cautious, even so far as having to break his shoulders.  Maybe I haven’t seen the last of him, after all?

 

-Derek

 

Kevin:

 

            I constantly worry about the others.  Are they okay?  Have they lost their way or have they come home?  It’s not even as simple as just returning.  I know that some are lost and may never recover, but we must try.  I hold out hope for them, as best I can.  In our lives, two weeks has become a long period time, yet nothing at all.  It’s hard to say for sure how time works for us.  It either goes by far too quickly, or it’s over in a flash.  Four months ago I couldn’t fly.  Now I’m able to climb over the clouds and look for miles.  Such miracles!  How could we have gotten this far, yet gone nowhere?  Shame.

            Derek, Danny, and myself have been going through a period of personal training from a man we call “The Desert Hermit.”  A few weeks ago we were with the rest of our friends on a mission to infiltrate a military base belonging to the Demon Regime but when our presence was discovered we were split into three groups.  We have found ourselves in the desert, but not without hope.  With the help of our newfound friend, we have more hope than ever before.  Our skills are far more advanced and our health has never been better.  I’m almost sorry to have to leave so soon, but I wish to find out what happened to everyone else.

            The question still lingers on my mind: Could I have done more?  If I had done something different, could I have helped avert the splitting of our team?  Would Chris be here beside me, flying until the air becomes difficult to breathe?  What if I had pushed a little harder?  What if I was less concerned about the soldiers we fought than the safety of the others?  What if I had used all my potential instead of withholding as much as possible so as not to lose control completely?  I wonder these things.  And I worry that by not doing something more, one or possibly all of my friends are now dead.  It’s a terrible thought.

            I must take care of Derek and Danny.  We are now the only three left together that I can help, so I must do everything to keep us from separating.  We have gone through something special, and I pray that we won’t lose the bond from the experiences we’ve shared here.  I’ve heard Derek speak of how the Legion has led us astray.  I can’t say I fully support his anger, but…I may agree with him.  I want to believe the Legion still has our best interests at heart, but it seems otherwise.  I consistently find details that don’t add up.  No map, no radio, no timeframe or pick-up point.  Something just felt wrong then, and I doubt it’ll feel any better when we return.  Lord, forgive me for my judgments.  Help me make the right decisions in these passing weeks.  Lord, give me the strength to do what is right and follow my convictions for the best.

            I still pray for the safety of the others, and I pray we find them alive and well.  I pray that the next month shall be better than the previous month.  I pray that our hardest times are far behind us, but in my heart I do not believe that will be the case.  I fear that our troubles have hardly begun.  Lord, protect us in these days to come.  Amen.

 

-Kevin

 

Danny:

 

            What?  No, I’m eating right now.  I’ll write later, Kevin.  Yeah, I promise I won’t forget.  After my nap.

 

-Danny

 

Austin:

 

            We’re all doing pretty fine, considering the hardships we’ve gone through a while ago.  I lost track of Chris and Lindsey at the base, but I’m pretty sure they’re fine.  Derek’s gone, too, along with Kevin, Danny, Jack, and Kyle.  I have no idea where they ran off to, but I doubt it’s as cool as the two weeks we’ve had in the forest here!  So cool!  A bit ago we stumbled into an old temple of some sort and found four glowing stones in different colors.  I don’t know what they do just yet, but I’m anticipating something awesome.  Why were they just sitting there in the first place?  Such mystery!  I love it!

            The most difficult part of wandering the woods with three other guys is that we’re also having to take care of a girl.  Leena’s special, but that’s just because she’s a girl trapped with four boys in the middle of a thick jungle.  Poor her.  Unfortunately, this’d be the perfect camping trip if she wasn’t complaining every few minutes about things that are and aren’t our fault.  Oh well, that’s just how she copes I guess!  Everyone’s got their ways.  I’m the first to look for something positive and latch onto it, but that doesn’t work for everyone.  Clinton seems to detach himself from the emotional aspect and bury himself deep in the analytical side of things.  He somewhat shares this trait with Jack, but not in exactly the same way.  It’s more internalized for Clinton than Jack.

            Scott’s a curious one.  It’s almost as if nothing’s happened in his life for years, so none of the recent events have even bothered him.  He just kinda walks through things like he’s fine whether they happen or not.  I like that!  Taking things in strides, always good.  I’m the same way.  Everything happens whether we want it to or not, so why worry?  It’s not like we can change the past, and who wants to change that anyway?  If I could, I’d just leave everything up to chance instead of trying to control everything.  Where’s the fun in knowing exactly what comes next?  Life’s an adventure and it’s gotta be lived without the knowledge of the plot twists coming your way.  Otherwise, what’s the point?

            Syrus letting us live was certainly a point twist I wasn’t expecting.  Okay, that’s stretching a bit, because I sort of thought something would make him leave us alone, but I wasn’t expecting it to be such a random light-beam that’d do it.  Where’d the light come from anyway?  Clinton figures it came from the Regime’s base since Syrus left as a result.  But what caused it?  Is that the Regime’s way of calling Syrus in case of emergency?  Maybe someone even stronger than Syrus generates that signal when he wants to contact Syrus and Syrus is too afraid not to respond.  Could be a possibility.  The look on Syrus’ face seemed pretty scared to me.  But then again, it also looked kinda surprised, like he’d never seen something like that before, or at least not on a regular basis.  Maybe it was something else entirely?  Is there someone else involved in this whole thing?  Could there be a third party besides the Regime and the Legion?  All I know is, I don’t know!  Fun to speculate at least.

            We should be back home in a week or so and I can’t wait to see everyone again.  I know they got back safely.  I’m…I’m sure of it.  Nothing could really happen to us…right?

 

-Austin

 

Clinton:

 

            At approximately 11 am our group of twelve is discovered infiltrating an enemy base.  By 11:20 myself and four others make our escape west of the base into a densely wooded area.  Shortly thereafter we discover we’re being pursued by a handful of the Regime’s soldiers and a high-ranking warrior named Syrus.  We run for nearly 6 hours, coming to a clearing by 5:50 pm.  By then we have lost all our followers save for Syrus.  We’re exhausted with no hope of defending ourselves.  We have roughly three months of training experience, (no field combat experience), and the sun has set, whereas Syrus has clearly been involved in a number of high-level missions and battles, one of which has given him fame as a Balobynian hero, (the details of which are sketchy and difficult to piece together, though I understand that it involved a plan to assassinate the Balobynian leader, Octavious).  Then, at approximately 6 pm exactly, a beam of intense light is seen in the distance in the direction of the Regime’s military complex.  As a result, Syrus flees, allowing us to make our escape.  This is where all reason breaks down.

            The obvious question involves the beam of light.  Where did it original and from what?  I’ve done some rough calculations as to what sort of power could generate a beam that size and intensity, and I don’t know anyone who could create it.  Certainly no one from our group, and not from any of the higher-ups from the Legion.  It is possible that the Legion had access to a high-powered cannon and finally pinpointed the Regime’s base, firing when confirmation came in from someone on the mission, (likely Jack).  It is believable that such a weapon exists and that the Legion would purposefully leave low-ranking soldiers uninformed, but it still doesn’t set well with me on a gut level.  The truth that so many facts from this mission have been omitted in any briefings points to something being amiss.  I just can’t figure out what.

            Clearly, the Legion either doesn’t trust us or they downright wish to eliminate us as a possible future threat, but why wouldn’t they just do the required work to train us properly and bring us closer so as to make better use of us?  If we have really exceeded expectations as much as we have, why no desire to exploit us to this advantage?  Perhaps this mission was a means to do just that, expecting Jack to be informed enough and deciding that the less information we have, the more efficiently we can manage our task.  In some way I can understand this logic.  If no previous group has ever found this particular military base, then it may be best to allow for a blank slate for the next group sent in.  I understand with the possible logic, but I by no means agree with it.  Being well informed gives a far greater advantage than pure happenstance.  The latter is too unstable and risky.  Reducing risks produces a greater end game when planning a war like this, no matter how quiet everyone is trying to keep it.

            I’d calculate the chances of the other members of our group being alive at 50%, assuming we’re only counting one or two.  The percent goes down the more members we assume are alive.  If we want a figure as to all member survival, I’d place it at 6%.  The amount of soldiers readily available in the base at the time of our discovery was overwhelming.  I’m amazed even we five made it out unscathed.  If I believed in such things, I’d say it was a miracle, but in reality it was more or less just a case of good timing.  In the future I would much rather have a full plan of escape rather than Jack’s concept of making things up on the fly.  That’s no way to lead a team.  We need someone who has a better understanding of the strength-to-ability ratio, like Derek.  Jack may know skills that we don’t, but he’s yet to show anything inherently useful, and he certainly hasn’t demonstrated an overwhelming amount of power hidden from view.  Given the situation, I couldn’t foresee Jack surpassing three, maybe four times his base power reading.  Derek, however, could increase his abilities by ten given the right motivation.  Lindsey, close to fifteen assuming she can control it, though that’s just an estimate.  Chris…too much credit is given to Chris.  These theories all assume that these members survived at all and are therefore speculative.

            However, if it turns out someone from our group did cause the light beam, they’d have to be 47 times stronger than any of us, at least.  A thought like that is just scary.  Whatever created the beam, man or machine, scares me, as little as I enjoy admitting that.  I do not now, nor ever, particularly wish to encounter something that powerful, from any proximity, especially if it’s in opposition to myself or others I’m tasked with protecting.  I have no problem calculating in the middle of battle, but I’d rather leave the fighting to someone capable of pure battle.  If Derek survives, I’ll suggest he take the place as the muscle to my plans.  Together, we’d make a formidable partnership.

 

-Clinton

 

Willy:

 

            Danny’s missing.  It’s almost like a part of me is missing, too.  I realize such a statement is trite, but I’m at a loss for better explanation.  I’m not writing to impress, I’m writing more to keep my mind from turning too far inward unto itself.  I have few chances to speak up around the others, mostly because I have nothing especially profound or relevant to say that hasn’t already been said.  I’m sure at least one other person will mention their thoughts on the whereabouts of the others, assuming they haven’t already.  What are my thoughts?  I worry about them to the point of illness, and I can’t even vocalize it without fear of breaking down.  Austin must feel similar, because I’ve seen the look on his face of someone internalizing a lot of fear and grief.  He feels the same way about Chris that I feel about Danny.  The two are nigh inseparable, perhaps not to the extent of Danny and myself but still to a high degree.  They’ve always been close.  They balanced each other well.  Austin didn’t have to worry about anything because Chris worried too much for either of them, and Austin was the only one capable of calming Chris down when he became too overwhelmed with this or that.  With Chris absent, Austin is forced to deal with more immediate problems without a cipher to directly separate himself from them.  He’s attempted to use Leena as a replacement, but her problems appear too vapid compared to what we’re all dealing with on the grander scale.  She’s more concerned about herself than the safety of the others, even her best friend.  I can’t understand that, but it must just be a means of how she copes.  We all have our ways, and hers must be more cynical.

            I want to keep a positive outlook, but I can’t.  Regardless if everyone survived, something has definitely changed.  We aren’t going to be reunited on positive terms.  The riff between some members has already begun and grown to the point of no return.  Derek and Jack will have words at some point, not to mention Derek and Chris.  Despite Derek beating Chris in the tournament and Chris’ lack of drive towards confrontation, the story between those two is far from over, assuming both have survived at all, (of which I do believe).

            Furthermore, the beam seen the night of our escape.  Everyone will have an opinion of it.  Mine is: I don’t like it.  Nothing with that amount of force is a good thing, even if it came from someone on our side, and especially if it’s someone within our group.  That sort of power corrupts a person in ways we can hardly understand.  As much as I’d hope we never see that beam again, the chances are high that it will reappear.  I’d ask Clinton for his calculations, but I’d rather not bother him with something of that nature.  If he hasn’t already wrestled with the thoughts, I don’t want to be the cause.

            I miss having Kevin around as well.  He doesn’t speak much, but he is certainly of the opinion of faith, and I respect that.  I wish he would speak more.  We desperately need someone to cut through all the shallowness of our emotions and say something important.  I don’t see many of us saying anything truly relevant save for Kevin.  Even if we don’t all believe the same things he does, he speaks with such conviction that it’s inspiring.  I really just wish he’d speak more.  Assuming he’s still alive, that is.

            That’s all any of us can do right now.  Just assume things one way or another.  Assume everyone’s dead.  Assume the Legion wants us dead.  Assume there’s more going on than we’ve been informed about.  I don’t want to assume anything more than I need to at the moment.  I don’t think anything really matters except us returning to Trillium City.  We can’t do anything more until we get back, so that needs to be our main concern.  The most we can do is hope and pray, and that’s all we should be expected to do anyway.  Just escaping with our lives is enough to be proud of.  Anything more, hoping included, is just above and beyond the line of duty.

 

-Willy

 

Leena:

 

            I swear, if I ever have to spend longer than five minutes alone with guys again, I’d better have a ring on a my finger and he’d better have a job that pays seven figures.  I’ve been stuck with four boys for two weeks and I want to die now.  If God or someone with equivalent powers could strike me down now, that’d be great, thanks.  Seriously, just imagine wandering around in some stupid woods with a bunch of Boy Scout rejects who can’t help but talk about the same stupid things over and over again.  You’d want to kill yourself, too.

            All I hear back and forth is, “I wonder if the others are okay,” and “Hey, what do you think that blue light was?”  I don’t really care about either right now.  I mean, sure, I miss the others, especially Lindsey, and I’d like to know why we’re randomly getting light shows in the middle of a desert, but I’ve got more important things to worry about currently, like getting home.  Lord do I miss indoor plumbing.  I’m not so much of a girl that I can’t just go behind a tree, (because I really don’t have a choice), but that doesn’t mean I like it.  And you just can’t truly appreciate the wonderfulness that is running water, HOT running water, when you want to wash your face or your hands or something like that.  And no make-up, of course, but luckily I’m not trying to impress anyone here, (I’m really not), so it could be worse.  It’s kinda too bad Kevin’s not here.  Then I may be more unhappy about the lack of make-up, but only just a little.  He’s only slightly better than the others, and that’s not saying much.  Jack’s more Lindsey’s type, (crap), so she can have him.  And Chris.  Poor silly boy.

            I really don’t think we should go back to the Legion when we do make it to the city.  That’s another thing the boys grumble about now and then, but they’ve never had a full conversation on the matter.  If someone asked me, I’d say we jump ship and cut our losses.  It’s just getting too dangerous for people like us anymore.  I don’t know how likely our bosses will be to send us on a more…appropriate mission after this one, but I doubt it.  We’d probably get sent straight to Balobyn and expected to storm the royal castle and force the nation’s leader into giving all power over to the Commander or something.  It’s just ridiculous.

            There isn’t much to comment on out here.  The forest is at least quiet, other than the sounds that guys make every FREAKING minute of the day, and all the noises they make when they get too excited and start climbing trees and stuff.  Who climbs trees anyway?  What’s so great about it?  It’s not like there’s a magic portal up there that’s getting us home any sooner, because if there was I’d have already taken it and been far away from boys forever.

 

-Leena

 

Scott:

 

            That light?  Totally saved our butts, so I don’t care if it was good or bad for anyone else.  My ass is fine, so that light is good in my book, whatever it was.  Syrus is also okay in my book.  I wasn’t there when he beat the hell out of everyone at the museum, so I haven’t really dealt with a Syrus whooping like the others have.  All I know is that he didn’t kill me and I like that sort of thing.  You know, not being killed, especially by someone who entirely could have killed me without trying.  We’re not that strong, so if he wanted to pop us off it would have been no trouble.  It wouldn’t have even been that hard to do before he flew off to go check out that mystery light.  I bet he could have just capped us one two three and been on his merry little way, completely unaffected by killing five more-or-less kids.  Dude let us live, and I’m fine with that.

            I’m pretty okay with the other four I’m traveling with, too.  Austin’s a nice enough guy that I’ve got no problem with him leading us around.  He’s got enough brains to ask Clinton about anything he doesn’t know, and that’s a good quality.  Jack’s not like that at all.  If Jack doesn’t know something, too bad for us because he’ll still pretend his bullshit’s fact, even when we know better.  But Austin, nah, he asks.  Not really a leader so much as a good, tall guy we can easily spot from a distance, and that’s all we need right now.  That and a blowjob.  But with four guys and a prude, that’s not happening on any terms I’d care to think about.

            Now, not that you ask me or anything, but Leena needs to get laid, and the sooner that happens the better.  She’s not awful, she’s just got the attitude of someone who wants it really bad but isn’t getting it because she’s got standards or morals or some stupid crap like that.  I remember when I was like that.  I was a fetus.  I changed pretty damned quick, so guess it was a phase.  I don’t care who she likes or who anyone likes, really.  If she asked me, I’d have sex with her.  It’s just business, and it’d be a great favor for the rest of the group who have to deal with her complaining all the time.  She just needs to be loosened up, and I’ve got no problem loosening her.

            Are the others dead?  Yeah probably.  That’s the risk you take when you sneak into an enemy military base with no real info, training, or a competent leader calling the shots, and having an incompetent leader arguing with an equally incompetent wannabie leader just spells disaster.  I should have made bets on the whole thing.  I would have cleaned up.  Oh well, win some, etcetera.  There’s a chance that a few guys survived, but if I see ‘em then I see ‘em, and if I don’t, well I still made a hefty bank from everything leading up to the mission’s failure.  Best chunk of info I ever sold ‘cross lines.

 

-Scott

 

Lindsey:

 

            Jack won’t tell me what happened at the base.  He keeps insisting that he doesn’t know either, but I’m not dumb enough to believe something like that.  I know he knows what happened.  The official debriefing has Jack explaining that a bunch of chemicals went off when they were mixed but I don’t believe that.  I remember what the area looked like pretty well, and I didn’t see any obvious chemicals anywhere.  Maybe Jack found them hidden elsewhere?  I don’t know how long I was out, and Jack won’t tell me any of the details on that, either.  It’s extremely frustrating.  I don’t know what exactly he thinks he has to protect me from.  Does he really believe I need to be sheltered from the truth?

            Two weeks have gone by and I’m beginning to grow increasingly anxious about everything.  No word from the other 8, and no real sign as to where they could have gone after we were discovered at the base.  The Commander refuses to tell me what he knows, either.  There are details that remain classified, and though I don’t doubt Jack could gain access to them if he tried, I do doubt that he’d share the details with me once he found them.  So in the meantime there hasn’t been much to do except try to stay sane.  I’m going crazy from the lack of activity, but I can’t justify doing anything particularly active at the moment.  It just doesn’t seem right.  None of this seems right.  How can any of it feel right without Chris and the others ready to join in, too?

            Two weeks is a long time to be bedridden.  If I were Chris, I’d have exploded from being stuck in one place for that long.  But he can hardly move.  He’s been sick since we got back from the mission and he just keeps getting worse.  Jack doesn’t seem to care whenever I bring it up.  There’s got to be more we can do, but it seems like no one cares enough to find a cure for whatever’s affecting him.  I forced the explanation out of Jack and even though it sounds crazy I don’t believe we should just give up.  He explained it to me as something called the Locust Virus, and while I don’t understand the raw details, the fact that it’s slowly, (and painfully), killing Chris, killing one of my best friends, is unacceptable.  If Chris can’t sleep well, none of us should be sleeping well.  So I…I haven’t been sleeping well, either.  I just don’t want to be gone in case…well…I don’t want him to be alone…

            Kyle and I have been taking shifts watching over him, helping him any way we can.  Kyle and him have really shown they’ve got a connection.  Sure, Chris’ best friend has always been Austin, but Kyle and him get along extremely well.  I’ve yet to see either get mad at one another, and it’s nice to see.  It’s really nice to see some of us just getting along, without any drama attached to it.  I really miss everyone together, but I don’t exactly miss Derek and Jack arguing all the time, Scott pushing Leena to get a reaction, and everyone just worrying about who’s stronger at any given moment.  I don’t care who’s stronger; I just care that we’re all okay.

            I’ve been trying to get Jack to help with Chris as well, but he doesn’t seem to want to offer any help or comfort.  He just keeps saying “He’ll be fine,” but he never explains how.  “He just will be.”  There’s no warmth to the way Jack’s speaking anymore.  It’s like…it’s like if Jack isn’t in a position where he’s the most important, then he doesn’t care.  Just another reason I wish everything could get back to normal, even if that means more drama.  At least everyone will be back to themselves, for better or worse.

            I can’t even get Jack to help that much with the littlest things with Chris.  We’ve all been writing these diaries for a bit, but Chris can’t even hold a pencil long enough to write anymore, so Kyle and I have been writing down what he asks us.  I know it’s not the same for Chris, though.  He’s having to hold back what he really wants to say, especially to me.  He thinks he’s going to die, but he won’t let me hear it.  It’s sweet, but I don’t want him protecting me from his problems.  Not if I’m asking to share them.  I can help him, but only if he’ll let me.  I just wish everything was back to the way it was…

 

-Lindsey

 

Kyle:

 

            Alright, so let me lay this all down for you keeping score.  Twelve of us trek out into the middle of nowhere.  That’s twelve.  Number of months, number of disciples, number of…twelve.  All of us under 18, roughly, (I think Jack might be 18 by now, I can’t remember and I don’t care).  We get dropped off and told by the army guys we work for to find an unfindable base in some ridge miles and miles south of our great city called Trillium.  And guess who finds the base?  Me.  Yup, I found it, and no one’s talking about it.  I bet no one else has so much as mentioned that “Hey, that was totally cool when Kyle found the base out there in the ridge.”  Whatever, I’m not a glory hog.  I’m no Derek, I’m just Kyle.  I know I found the base, so in a way, I blame myself for why we’re all split up right now.

            Then again, I also blame Jack, because hey, the guy’s just itching to get blamed for something.  The way he’s been acting he knows he’s to blame for something major.  Maybe it’s just that he feels like he was the leader of our group or something.  Dang Jack, let it go.  Who cares about being the leader of a bunch of teenagers?  “I’m king of the idiots and I’ll fight anyone who says otherwise!”  Please, they can fight for the top spot, I’m fine being the guy who finds stuff and actually does good things instead of getting us captured like rookies.

            We did get captured, and that’s where things get fuzzy.  I remember that we took on a bunch of soldiers who thought it was fair to rofl-rape us, and let me tell you, it’s not funny at all.  No sir, I don’t care much for being jumped on by a half dozen guys and getting pummeled relentlessly.  Not my idea of a good time whatsoever.  Pizza and a movie?  Great time.  I just don’t have anyone to ask.  I’d go with Lindsey if we had time between taking care of Chris.  Not in the romantic sense or anything, it’s just that she’s a good girl to relax with.  She’s a good best friend type of girl.  Those are the best.  Chris picked a good one.

            Yeah, Chris needs to get up here pretty soon.  I don’t blame him for not wanting to though.  Jack hasn’t told me jack, (hah), but Lindsey filled me in.  Locust Virus?  Sorry bud, couldn’t have happened to a more undeserving guy.  Chris is a stand-up guy.  I can relate to him.  I mean, he just wants to get with his dream girl, and she’s right there in front of him all the time.  She’s even closer now that she’s been helping take care of him.  Right now it’s me, her, a few nurses, and Jack pitching in to keep Chris going and that isn’t split evenly at all.  It’s like me 30% of the time, the nurses 10%, Jack 5%, and Lindsey filling up the rest.  She hardly leaves unless she has to use the bathroom, and I know she’s considered just using a bedpan or a catheter so that she doesn’t have to leave.  It’s a shame that she doesn’t realize she’s in love with the guy, too, or else we could end that whole plotline a heck of a lot quicker.

            I really don’t want him to die, either.  I need him to stay alive, otherwise no one’s gonna listen to my snarky comments on everything.  The others just give me that look that means, “Shut up,” but Chris smiles and nods along, like he’d say the same thing if I didn’t.  I can’t have my primary audience die from some crummy virus like that; it’s just not right I tell you!  Someone’s got to find a breakthrough cure any moment now.  It’ll be the dumbest thing, too, like lemon juice or some random new technique someone luckily just learned, as if our lives don’t suffer from deus ex machina enough as it is.  Seriously, it’s like our life is being written by an anime fanfic writer.  That or a desperate sociopath.  Whoever’s writing our woes, I don’t trust him one bit.  Chris, though, he’s good people.

            I wonder where the others got off to anyway?  We were all together and then we got split.  I think in three separate directions, but I could be wrong.  Here’s something that Jack’s failed to discuss at any point: He freaked out and panicked because he said he saw Syrus, but when we were captured Syrus was absent from both our pre-beating and our interrogation beating.  So then, where was Syrus during all of this?  He’d have to be the highest-ranking guy in the whole base, so why wasn’t he the one interrogating us like that?  My bet is that he chased after some of the others, but Jack won’t listen to any of my theories.  Why does no one listen to me when I’m figuring everything out for them?  This plot isn’t that difficult to figure out.  A third-grader could do it, seriously…

 

-Kyle

 

Jack:

 

            Twelve Legion recruits were sent to the Katirian Wastelands two and a half weeks ago.  Currently, only four known survivors made it out of those wastelands: Chris Collins, Lindsey Sonnen, Kyle Reid, and myself.  All the others were lost and we’ve had no means to contact them since their disappearance, nor have we heard anything from them, so either they have not attempted to contact us, have been unable to contact us, or are dead.  Looking at the conditions, it would appear to be a combination of the three.  Too much time has passed to assume much more than that, but no further plans should include them from here on out.

            More pressing is the reality that of our remaining four, one may soon be gone.  Chris was injected by something called the Locust Virus during an interrogation at the Regime’s base in the Katirian Wastelands and given a prognosis of under one day to live.  He has somehow lived past two weeks, but his condition is worsening every hour and within the week I predict he will no longer be with us.  There’s no known cure for this virus and no known treatment.  We’ve been keeping him comfortable, but that’s as much as we can really do.  We need to cut our losses and move on with whatever comes next, which I’d like to be more investigation of the Regime’s ruined base.  Despite most of it being destroyed via a chemical reaction I caused, there is still a significant enough portion that needs to be investigated, and I’d rather I did it personally instead of a neutral party from the Legion.  I have intimate connections with the base’s layout and I know where the most important buildings are located.  I’ve given my detailed accounts of everything on multiple occasions, but I’d much prefer returning and explaining everything with firsthand experience.

            The loss of the others thins out our ranks significantly, but this may be for the best.  A number of the others have become very difficult to control, such as Legion member Derek Tolkein, but their loss only frees up the chance to better-train Legion member Lindsey Sonnen in hopes of containing and controlling her abilities.  Her Pulse ratings continue to climb but they fluctuate too drastically to know exactly where she stands in terms of power.  She needs to learn how to use all of this before she gets to a point where this power is too much to contain and explodes forth in one way or another.  I’ve seen what can happen when an unchecked power goes off like a powder keg, and it’s not a favorable outcome in my opinion.

            Personally I feel as if I have been lacking in my role as the group’s unofficial leader.  Though I was designated leader by default, I’ve not recently done anything to confirm this status and have instead become too complacent for my own good.  I intend to rectify this as soon as possible, either by pushing through to the next plateau of Pulse abilities, or by reclaiming my dominant position in some other impressive manner, possibly a show of said dominance.  I have no personal desire to be “the best” or “the strongest,” however I feel it is a necessity for me to remain above the others at this current stage due to their inexperience and lack of clear judgment in times of extreme risk.  Assuming any of the other members return, I will make it very clear exactly why I was unofficially chosen and prove to them that they have a long way to go even to make it to where I currently stand.

 

-Jack

 

Chris:

 

            Though the words being written are mine, the hands writing them are not.  I’m forced to remain in bed due to what sounds like a fatal illness and as a result I don’t have enough strength to do this on my own.  I have no choice but to lie back in bed and just quietly chatter to the others as they write down my every word.  It’s fantastic.  Obviously I should be annoyed at whatever’s killing me, but I’m more confused than anything.  I’ve been kept out of the loop with the details of what’s killing me, and while it’s nice not to know specifics…I’d sure like to know the specifics.  If it’s going to kill me, can’t I at least know why I’m going to die other than being told, “Because the virus is fatal”?  Unfair.

            We got separated from the others in our party, but I don’t really want to talk about it.  Someone’s bound to have mentioned it by now, so I won’t waste time on it.  I will say that I’m baffled by Jack’s explanation for us getting out of the base.  Chemicals mixing?  That sounds like a lie.  Sorry Lindsey, I don’t mean anything by it, I just don’t believe it.  Jack’s fine enough, but he’s still got something he’s not telling us.  I don’t know what it is, but it’s there.  Maybe he likes Leena?  No, didn’t think so.  No one likes Leena.  Just kidding!

            Okay Kyle, where did I leave off?  Oh, right.  Yeah, Jack hasn’t told us the truth for months now.  Why didn’t he let us in on his whole plan from the start?  How did he know where everything would be when we got in there, more or less?  He’s got some weird connection in there, I’ll bet you.  And he keeps looking at Lindsey like he’s already won her over or something.  She’s not that easily tricked.  She may be nice to you, but there’s no way she could be into you like that.  I doubt she’s into me either though, so I guess that doesn’t really mean much.     

            You really think there’s a chance?  How?  I mean, yes, I know her on a level that few others do, and definitely no other guys around here do, but how far will that really get me?  And don’t tell me to be patient, either.  I’ve been patient for over 8 years now; I’m allowed to be impatient as of this date.  You like anyone here?  Yeah, you’re right, that’d only leave Lindsey and Leena, wouldn’t it?  I don’t think you’re trying to cut in on Lindsey or anything, I didn’t mean that.  You and Leena are somewhat cute together, you realize that?  Yes, I do think I’m funny.

            Jack, I don’t know why you’re even bothering writing for me today.  I told you you didn’t have to.  I’ll just wait for Lindsey or Kyle.  No don’t read through what they wrote for me just don’t…damn it, Jack.  Yeah, I do think you’re not telling me something.  Why?  Maybe because you’re not telling me something!  It’s obvious enough that we didn’t get out of there from chemicals going off.  What?  No, I don’t know anything about chemicals, but that doesn’t mean I’m an idiot.  Fine, you’re the chemist I guess, you tell me again how you mixed two chemicals and blew up an entire military base.  Okay, half a military base then.  Whatever.  But how did we not get blown up in the explosion?  Oh right, your shield bubble attack thing.  Forgot about that.  It can really withstand an explosion that big?  Cool.

            We left off talking about the base exploding, Lindsey.  Jack just had to convince me again that he wasn’t covering anything up.  No no!  Don’t read through everything else!  It’s private!  Thank you.  You’re good to me like that.  Jack read everything else even when I asked him not to.  Because he’s…he’s not as good to me.  And he forgot to bring me any juice or anything.  I don’t understand how any girls could be into him.  No, not implying anything, I just don’t see how they could, assuming any are.  Well I’m sorry, I didn’t mean anything by it.  I’m kind of tired, I think I should just rest some more today.

            Hey Kyle.  No, my head just hurts today.  I can’t sit up any higher than this.  And my voice isn’t able to do much.  I really need to keep resting.  Thanks.

            Lindz…maybe tomorrow.

            Nah…

            (Shakes his head).

 

            As of today, Chris is no longer able to talk with us, so we will be discontinuing the attempt.

-Jack

 

Commander:

 

            Damn those kids.  How in the hell was I supposed to know they’d actually find the damned base out there?  None of us could have pinpointed it, so why were twelve idiots able to locate it, infiltrate it, and blow it to shit within a few day’s time?  It doesn’t make any sense.  Dumb luck isn’t known to be that forgiving, and if it is, why don’t I have any moments as forgiving as that?

            They’re starting to ask questions more than they should.  The girl keeps pestering me whenever she sees me in the cafeteria in between feeding the sick one.  She keeps wanting to know more about the mission and details that are far too classified for anyone but myself and a few others to read.  And that Kyle kid just sits outside my office and stares in, not saying a word.  He just sits with his arms crossed and glares at me like I’m hiding something from him, which I am, but I have to.  I’m the Commander for God’s sake; of course I know things that no one else does.  Information is priceless in these days since we were able to save so few pieces of it from anything pre-disaster.  We can’t even pinpoint the exact year the disaster took place.  We have snippets of books and movies and TV shows and pop culture and such but no overall history of the world.  It was all lost.  Why a bunch of useless crap survived and nothing worth knowing made it is beyond me, and just another case of dumb luck not favoring me.

            It’s nice that the sick kid hasn’t been able to ask me any questions.  I’m not happy that he’s on the verge of dying, but at least I don’t have to explain anything more to him that he wouldn’t understand in the first place.  Maybe everything will just work itself out and I won’t have to tell him everything after all.  The chances of him ever getting out of that bed are slim enough.  If he somehow manages to recover, I’ll give him the tape.  Otherwise there’s no need to make his last few days more difficult than they already are.  And if he doesn’t make it, I’ll just destroy the tape like I’d been hoping to do anyway.

            The one person I’m very suspicious of is Jack.  He hasn’t been asking me any terribly pressing questions, which is extremely odd for him.  Usually he’s attacking me left and right with questions that I can’t even begin to answer for him, usually because I don’t have an answer, but currently he’s been almost silent.  He just spends his time brooding, and that’s rather unusual for him.  Perhaps he’s finally exhausted his thirst for Legion secrets?  Or is it he’s just figured them all out by now?  He does have far too many means of discovering things he shouldn’t.  He has more connections than I seem to have most of the time.  To my knowledge, at least he doesn’t know about the tape.  If he did, then we’d have some problems.

            While I can’t explain the Regime’s base’s destruction away, (because a chemical explosion doesn’t look like that), I don’t particularly care.  The base is gone, victory for the Legion.  We’ve had too few victories, that even one that results in so many casualties is a fantastic victory.  Besides, the other two groups didn’t die in the explosion or during their discovery.  One group was pursued by Syrus, so their chances of survival are low, but Syrus is too unpredictable to guess whether he let them live or not.  I’d guess he did, but that’s only a personal guess.  Our official standpoint for the other 8 teenagers is MIA, presumed KIA.  Only God knows if that’ll change.

 

-Legion Commander ‘Decimus’ Spurius

 

Syrus:

 

            I’ve seen that light before.  It’s impossible that I’d see it again, but it’s remarkably the same light I witnessed so many years ago.  Could it be possible that he didn’t…?  No, I saw his corpse.  I know he’s dead.  I held him in my arms.  My own two hands felt the wounds in his chest and throat.  No amount of healing could restore him.  Yet…the light was unmistakably reminiscent of that which has been seen before.  James had no children though, so it is nothing more than an elaborate coincidence.

            Someone has grown to a level of which we’ve not seen since the world changed.  I refuse to call it “The Great Destruction,” or even the more optimistic “The Great Reconstruction,” because neither carries the same weight of actually witnessing it yourself.  When the world changed, there was no possible way to make sense of anything.  The best we could do was hold onto whatever we could find and hope we made it through to the other side.  I braced myself and crept deeper into the shadows growing in my heart.  James chose to pray.  I envy him.

            I couldn’t get a good enough view of who was involved in the explosion.  I saw four teenagers boarding a helicopter, with one in a fatal condition.  I could sense that he was the one from before.  The one that had intrigued me so deeply.  It was an utter shame he didn’t make it to the final round of the tournament with me.  I so wished to compete with him and directly judge what he was capable of.  The other child was strong, but there was no true reason behind his strength other than a purely selfish desire.  I’ve yet to fight someone with that as their motivation and be justly excited.  The only fights worth having are with warriors of true motivation.  Only then are you guaranteed a real battle.  None of the other teenagers seemed to have that drive, and that’s a shame.  Perhaps that’s why I’ve been so apathetic to kill them when presented the chance?

            I am now unable to be merciful to them anymore.  I have expended too many possibilities that I cannot get away with another.  I still have a duty, and now that they’re becoming reasonably dangerous to our cause, I’ll have no choice but eliminate them should they get in the Regime’s way again.  Project Locust is the next step in wiping the Legion from our path, and though I don’t agree with it, there should be no more failures.  If only the one teenager…Chris…wasn’t so near death when I saw him again.  Such a shame.  If he was really the one that destroyed the base…really the cause of hundreds of Regime soldiers…I mourn the chance to battle with him before his death.

 

-Syrus

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