He was soaring between the clouds. The sun was setting and the sky was a kaleidoscopic masterpiece. He was starting to descend with that amazing feeling in his stomach like he was on a roller coaster. As he broke through the clouds there were flashes and thunderous explosions. The peace above the clouds had turned into a war the likes of which he had never seen. People were flying everywhere as missiles exploded near them. They somehow shielded themselves from the explosions and then responded with violent concussions below as the earth itself upheaved. Rock and metal formed into structures that attacked tanks and other mechanized creatures he didn’t recognize. He had no fear and felt everything around him, including the ground, people, structures, explosions, and the air itself. He felt an energy within him building to an almost uncontrollable level as he sensed every object on the battle field that presented a threat and he instantly connected this energy to each of them.
Just as he felt the liberation of the release of energy, something awoke Adam from his sleep.
Not a sound or the dream, but a feeling. A feeling he wasn’t alone.
He didn’t move, but opened one eye and searched the dark room for signs of movement. It was hard to see anything, very little light made it into the basement where he slept. In the silence, darkness played with his mind, hinting at shadows and objects but revealing nothing. He still couldn’t shake the intense feeling of a presence.
Slowly pushing the covers to the side, he squinted at what looked like a silhouette of someone hunched over near his desk. He tried to focus on the object and it looked like a person holding something under their arm. His fingers crept across the nightstand and when they found the switch the light flickered on, revealing someone dressed in all black facing the other way. As soon as words began to form in his mouth, the shadowy figure reached its gloved hand towards him. Suddenly, a bright flash appeared in the air between them and a shock wave hit that left his ears ringing. The bulb on the nightstand popped and immediately went out.
Disoriented, deaf, and partially blind, with spots filling his vision, he stumbled off the bed and rose to his not so sturdy feet. His dog started barking upstairs, and was cut short with a yelp. Fumbling through the dark room he reached the stairs and bounded up two at a time in his underwear. He quickly made it to the opened back door and ran outside. The cool night air hit his face as his green eyes scanned the backyard for the intruder. His gaze stopped on the animal on the grass. It was his dog Romeo, which he had rescued two years ago. He was silent and motionless.
Looking up through watery eyes, the dim moonlight revealed the fence on the far end of the yard and he caught a glimpse of a black shape going over the top. Adam dashed towards the fence closing the distance and climbed the metal links. With one leg over he rushed to get the other, only to feel his boxers snag on the metal. Momentum threw his body downwards and as his face hit the fence he heard the material rip, letting gravity take over as he hit the ground head first.
Pushing himself up, dirty and determined, he began sprinting again as he caught sight of the dark figure heading towards a black SUV parked under the streetlights. Now he would finally get a good look at who he was chasing. As if the assailant read his mind, he raised his hand and there was a flash as all the lights in the area blinked out at once.
He could see him get into the vehicle. As it sped off he still gave chase, but to no avail, the intruder had escaped.
Adam returned to the small studio basement he rented from the owner upstairs, Mrs. Hacklebee, who was standing outside her door in a large flowered dress wondering what all the commotion was about. She was an old widow with a grumpy temperament and she looked at him with contempt and judgment in her eyes. She followed his gaze and caught sight of his dog, now dead on the lawn.
“Oh my!” she exclaimed in her southern accent, looking at the bloody half naked young man coming out of the dark. His brown hair was matted down with dirt. “What happened?”.
He knelt down and held his dog in his arms.
“I don’t know,” he managed through the sadness. “I woke up to a man in my room and I chased him out. I have no idea what he was doing or why he did this.”
She immediately pulled out her phone.
“I would like to report a crime… “her voice became distant to Adam as she reported the intrusion to the police.
He finally got up and not being sure what to do he grabbed a blanket and put it over his motionless companion. Through all of the nights of schoolwork and hard days of internships Romeo had been there, always happy to see him, always there to cheer him up.
As he waited for the police to arrive, Adam went downstairs to see what had been taken. It was still the middle of the night and hours away from when he had to get up for his last day of the semester for college.
He didn’t have much, but as soon as he approached his desk he felt his stomach drop to his feet. The computer and backup storage were gone. He hurried and found his phone on the floor near his bed. Quickly checking his backup files online he found them missing as well. All of his work, his life. Gone.