Different

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Tate

Isren

The next day was odd, everything seemed off to me, the people were different, the sky was different, his mind was different.

I went to school as normal, walking down the streets of the city, I walked nervously past the homeless and hoped they didn’t talk to me, I wasn’t in the best mood. I arrived to his school slightly late, I was worried. I had no reason to be worried at all but for some reason that emotion seemed to be emitting from me that day. Unanticipatedly, I was pulled aside but someone. It was Pascal, his stress calmed me instantaneously “Hey, follow me.” He’d already started walking, this is it, Pascal was a good guy, but maybe he was too good. Pascal might've set this whole thing up and I may well be walking to my death, with false hope devouring my mind. We went to the back of the school. There was a guy standing there that I’d never seen before. I started to panic, what if Pascal had seen right through my lies and this guy was going to kill me?

“Marcus, this is Tate, the guy I was telling you about, he needs help.” Pascal said eloquently

“Hey Tate, you’re one of them right?” Marcus said

I nodded, my anxiety had tipped over the edge. I felt Pascal's eyes on me.

"What can you do?" Pascal asked. "I don't know something to do with my eyes." I shook my head, dismissing his question, sadly not being able to trust anyone.

"I can get you out of here but it'll have to be now, I've got a tight schedule, plenty of kids wanting to get out of this shitshow." Pascal looked at me with wide eyes, he knew this would be the last time he would see me.

“Right we need to get you out of here now, you’re parents have been informed of this, are we clear?” Marcus said

“Yeah," I lied, my dad will be crushed but I will be one of countless kids that go missing, "Wait you’re going to kill me right?” I said warily

“Why the fuck does every kid I take there think I’m going to kill them?” Marcus said laughing “Of course I’m not going to bloody kill you.”

I calmed down again, after that I and Pascal said their goodbyes and I was now in a truck with Marcus. “So what’s your super power kid?”

“I don't know, but my eyes tingle and burn sometimes, there are small marks in them, my parents assumed I was one of them but then when I touch people, I can see everything bad they have done, but sometimes it doesn't work, I don't think it's strong enough yet.”

Marcus laughed "You lied to your friend?"

"I had to, I don't know who to trust his father is Alaric."

"Shit, that's got to be bad, but that kid that brought you to me was good right?" Marcus said

"Yeah he was good, his brother is dangerous, like his stupid father."

Marcus looked at me with wide eyes and burst into laughter, I allowed himself to laugh too.

I looked ahead and saw winding roads that soon turned into dirt roads, the sun was setting the sky was intermixed with burnt orange, rose pink, and violet. I already knew we were in a completely different place to Isren, it was never like this in Isren at all. Isren was lightless and desolate, it was a reflection of Alaric's cruel regime.

Soon enough we had arrived, the place was out of the way of any sort of civilisation. For once I felt safe. I looked over to Marcus "Welcome home kid, don't worry everyone is the same here." I smiled. Marcus got out of truck, I followed him.

There were fire pits and concrete buildings. I felt like he was home. I was bewildered and weirdly comfortable, there was no anxiety or nervousness at all. I looked around, there were soaring concrete buildings and countless flaming fires sprinkled around the place, I assumed this was a place for Marks, hopefully he was right. From the crowd, a few people, I assumed they were the leaders walked towards me. "Hello I'm Alec, this is Sam" pointing at the man with a vicious scar through on of his eyes. " And this is Cohen." Looking at the man with the white scars down his right arm. "This is Floucia." I smiled.

"What's your name?" Cohen said

"Tate."

"Well, then Tate, we better get you settled in." Alec said, gesturing him to follow. I was led into a room a few new faces were there, but it didn't scare him, I stood with my arms crossed staring at a wall. A girl walked in too, her white hair made her stand out more than anyone else in the room. Alec spoke up after a few moments of whispering between a few people. "So Tate, I'm guessing you want to know what the hell goes on around here?"

I nodded

"You do know about Floucia don't you?" Cohen spoke up, obviously seeing through my clueless eyes

"No, I'm from Isren so there's more government control, also Ocril I guess." The others looked puzzled about what I had just said

"What the fuck are you on about more government control?" A girl piped up "I'm Isla by the way." I smiled at her

"My dad works with Alaric, I'm guessing you know who that prick is, my dad is his closest advisor and friend, I happen to be his messed up kid." I said looking down at my scruffy boots

"No, you're not messed up, you're useful to us and we can help you, don't worry. There is no one here from Isren." Fuchsia said with pure optimism in her blue eyes "As a group, the people present here are responsible for messing shit up in Alari and other key cities, we do quite a bit in Srey and Ocril too." Fuchsia said again

"You need to get to know some names Tate." Alec said, "Meet people your age. You've met me, Sam, Cohen and Isla. Talk more about what your dad does at out next meeting are we clear?"

I nodded

"Atticus show Tate around, no sarcasm." The boy with the black wavy hair laughed.

Everything was a blur in my head. I couldn't hear anything, I saw a guy grab my arm and drag me into the rain.

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