Chapter 1: Their All Gone
“Do I have to?” My young high pitched voice rings out.
“Yes, Now go.” My father’s deeply stern voice comes out gruffly.
My tiny hands grab the syringe as I try to hold back the tear of fear prickling my eyes. The dark blue liquid slightly sloshing about as I place the needle on my hip. I gulp in and close my eyes sinking the needle under my skin. A small yelp emerges at the pain. I open my eyes and bit my reddened lip as I press down on the small button releasing the liquid as it burns through my system.
My bottom lip wobbles as I start to cry. My father’s large form squatted down in front of me.
“It hurts!” I cry out. His large holding me tight to my chest. A small rumble in his chest as he speaks.
“I know, but a day will come when it no longer hurts, my child. Then you will be stronger than ever.” His tense spoken words did little to comfort me.
“Ahhhhhhhhhhh!” I burst up my ear bursting scream rumbling from deep within me. The pain burst in every cell and molecule in my body. Strong hands surround me forcing my struggling body back onto the table. Calls and urgent words fail to stop my body as I struggle against their hold, all the while my screams piercing out of me.
The holds finally push my body back down my eyes flying about fearfully. Suddenly his marble sculpted face pierces through my fog.
“Stop. You need to stop moving!!” He orders out both hands grasping onto my burning face, both on the sides of my face. My eyes grow wide, focusing on his face inches away from mine. Looking into his pained and frightened eyes immediately flash back to me the same feelings in me. My body slowly slumps dead to the table, the pain becoming too much to bare. Tears flood my face as I stare at his violet eyes.
His slightly rough hands stay on my burning face, his cool touch helping to keep the fire at bay. His thumbs move ever so gently back and forth on my cheeks.
“I know! Just close your eyes, Ruby is going to give you something to sleep.” His usual cocky persona was now soothing and kind. A prick in my eyes sends a new surge through my body then the slow euphoric bliss. My eyes grow heavy as his words grow dull and muddled, my eyes taking in the darkness of sleep.
“Well then, it’s your fault isn’t it?” His dark contorted voice warps into the darkness until I’m back there, with him. The venom seeps into every word as they repeat over and over again. Each voice other team members accusing voice racking over me.
“Your just a bomb!” Foxglove accuses.
“Nothing but a danger.” Harrison taunts out.
“You only have yourself to blame!” Talons words ravage out to me. All I want to do is escape the darkness and the contorted words of the team... Until the burning in my gut begins, the sound of a gunshot echoing in my ears.
A soft gruff moan slips through my slightly parted dry lips.“Ahhhhh.” After a moment I crack my eyes open, my eyes taking a moment to adjust to the dimly lit tent. The darkly lit tent is quiet as the crickets outside chirp away. I roll my head slightly taking in the medical tent lit with a few lite candles. Rustling movement around me draws my attention as Archer stands from an old chair walking toward me. Archer stands over me his hands gently placing themselves on my shoulder. He leans over slightly getting closer for me to see him in the dark tent. His shaggy blonde dirty blonde hair brushed to the side, his face tired.
I wet my lips and swallow trying to clear my dry throat. “What- what happened?” I mutter out, but my voice is still rough. Archer lets lose a faint charm-filled smile.
“You took a pretty good beating, but you’re harder to take out than a splinter.” He says gently shifting his head to the side. His shaggy bangs fall over his right eye slightly. I blink a few times, a faint smile kissing my face.
“Am I full genesis?” I croak out, feeling a little happier than I thought I would. Archer nods.
“It’s going to be a painful next two weeks but you’ll make it.” He says sitting on the table my weak body lays on.
“I was shot... I thought I was going to die.” I mutter out in confusion. Archer nods his lips drawing into a thin line, and his eyes drop from my face as he speaks.
“We lured the horde away and got into the facility in time for ruby to get you, the first aide. Your mutated body went into self-defense mode, sparing us time to save you. I found the empty bottle but we weren’t sure you got it in your system until we got you back to camp. When we got you back a fever had set in but when we saw the rash, we knew you ingested it.” Archer explains and I nod along slightly.
“T-the team?” That is all I say, holding back the break in my heart. Talon told me he had killed them, I’m not sure if I’m asking if he saw them or if I just really wanted someone else to confirm talon’s terrible words.
Archer clears his throat his eyes filled with solemn sadness. “We got to you after the horde... and we found blood but there were no bodies, either they aren’t dead or the horde took care of it,” Archer speaks up his eyes unable to linger on my face. I swallow, so for the first time, talon was telling the truth.
“We checked with our spies in the walls, there’s no word on the team. I’m sorry, but I don’t think they made it.” Archer mutters out. I try so hard to hold them in, to keep the tears from falling but the tears fall from my eyes. I quietly bit my bottom lip closing them tight trying to compose myself.” We sit in remorseful quiet for a few moments, archer’s presence giving me a silent comfort.
“Okay,” I speak up as my eyes open. Archer’s soft eyes connected with mine.
“There is one more thing..” He speaks up in the same soft tone. I wait, my eyes silently asking him what he was talking about.
“There was a trail of blood down the steps. When we got into the lab we found someone else laying next to you.” He speaks up and furrows my brow in confusion. Someone else? Talon said they were all dead, who would be in the lab with me?
“An African American man, he was unconscious next to you. Bleeding out from a forsaken’ s bite.”
“H-Harrison?” My voice speaks up with more hope than I should know that the odds he’s alive are so slim.
“We brought him back with us, he’s fighting but it doesn’t look good. The virus will most likely take him in the next few days.” He somberly informs me.
The team, me, and now Harrison. Talon ripped away so many lives in those few hours, all ripped from this horrible world because of him and his orders. Now because of him, I have no home and no one to live for. I’m going to find him and make him pay for the lies he’s stamped out. If I hadn’t gone full-blown angry and taken the virus before he could take it away, I would be staring at the next genocide. He took the teams to live and now Harrison’s dying too. I won’t allow him to do that to all those innocent people.
For the rest of the night, I fell in and out of restless sleep to find Archer still sitting in the chair just a few feet from my bed, every time comforting me after a distorted nightmare of their faces and voices.