End Game

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Chapter five part2

*****

It was hard getting ready with one damaged hand, but Zee being the type of person she is, aided me with everything. The pain was slowly subsiding and the pain killers seemed to be doing their job well enough.

Soft fabric clung tightly to my skin, I guess they didn’t wear anything loose fitting. Tight black athletic wear pants and a sleeveless top. It looked relatively normal, nothing overly fancy like yesterday, for that I was grateful.

Veronica insist on wearing makeup and edged on forcing me to, when it was clear that at least for now nothing particle filled will be even touching my face she dropped the subject. We were about to ‘train’, that meant physically activity, right? Wouldn’t she just sweat the makeup off? Or was it so easy for her that she didn’t even break a sweat?

Choosing to go with the latter, I just decided to let my hair flow freely down, bouncing past my shoulders curving around my oval face.

Looking in the mirror, I felt satisfied with how I looked. Plain, simple, me. Then why was this abnormal amount of guilt building up inside, why did I not recognise the person in front of me, even without makeup, it just didn’t look like me. I found myself reaching out touching the glass expecting it the break or shatter or something. Anything was better than looking at the person ahead of me, the person I so wanted to forget.

Three loud, calculated knocks pounded on my door, this time I knew it wasn’t Zee. Her knocks were softer and calmer. To my surprise Jordon popped his head through, his black hair shaggy and unkempt, this was a far cry from his normal pristine look, I’m guessing he just wasn’t a morning person. “Are you ready?” He gave a small smile.

Returning the gesture, I nodded, making my way out of Isaiah room and down the curved staircase with him. I wasn’t at all used to big places like this and getting lost was especially easy to do.

“Thanks for coming to get me, I’m honestly baffled how you all don’t get lost in this place.”

To my shock, a small laugh came from his parted lips, “You get used to it. Actually Zee asked me to get you, she wants us to, in her words bond. ” His last words placed not bitterness or distaste but more amusement.

Nudging my shoulders, his brown eyes pierced into mine, we paused and both erupted into laughter, I couldn’t help but smile, “Yeah that sounds like Zee.”

Quickly he added, “No hate towards you or anything.” I dismissed it with a wave of my hand. “I couldn’t get much in with everyone crowding, marvelling at you. And Isaiah, damn I’ve never seen him so protective over someone before.” He paused, I could feel his stare burning into my cheek trying to gauge a reaction out of me. But I had nothing to give him.

Turning to face him as we walked, me subsequently following him, I asked, “Is it true,” He raised an eyebrow prompting me to carry on, “Is it true that Isaiah was assigned my case years back and I’m somehow going to save the world, that must be some sci-fi crap^^ because, Jordon, well the world can’t be saved, there’s no hope, how can there be with everything’s that’s happening. It’s just not possible.” There was a long pause, so long that I thought maybe he didn’t hear me.

“Alexis, what you have to understand is that we were all assigned your case, the Nations has hundreds of agents, no one wanted to take it because we knew it would be a great risk, even more than usual, people - things that no one can even possibly start to comprehend don’t want the world saved and they’d go to great lengths to prevent it from happening. Only Isaiah was willing to put his life on the line for you. And- yes we have been monitoring you, seeing if you would be a viable candidate, we got a little bit more than excepted, you’re the perfect candidate. For what? Well that we don’t know, as I’m sure Isaiah would have mentioned we are restricted to the level of information we get. Silly, if you ask me considering since it’s us putting our lives on the line. But you are our only hope.”

Something suddenly struck me, ” Do you think what happened to me,” Gesturing to my bandaged arm, ” Do you think it was something paranormal?”

He shrugged, “It could possibly well be. You must understand that we’re mere fragile humans and that there’s civilizations out there so much advanced than our own and wars with things we can’t see everyday. I’m a big believer in spiritual happenings and I-”

Elijah suddenly strolled past us, heading for what I guessed would be the training room. I was so engrossed with the conversion that I didn’t realise the quick change in scenery, the dimly lit hallway lead to a big ruby red door, I stilled my breathing, memories flashed back to Eaton, Evan, Isaiah, the demonic Unknown. Was that the paranormal entity Jordon was talking about or something else, something far worse. “Not feeding her more of your heebie-jeebies ^^^ ghost stories are You?” He directed the question to Jordon but his green eyes trained on me, “Pay no mind to what he tells you, everything has a rational, reasonable and viable explanation.” He smirked before jogging towards the door, his sweatpants clinging to his waist and his tattoos more visible than last night, encompassed around his whole body.

“Does that guy ever wear a shirt?” Jordon huffed, low enough for me to hear but not loud enough for Elijah to hear, looking up I smiled which he returned a friendly one, both trying to keep ourselves from laughing. Despite his hard exterior, he seemed genuine, in fact him and Elijah are the epitome of juxtaposition. “Well, like I said,” He continued, “It’s just my opinion, doesn’t mean you actually have to believe it.”

I nodded comfortable with what he had to say, it brought a whole new light and perceptive on things. But there was still one question, burning in my mind, “What’s the deal with you and Zee?” I blurted it out before even thinking if it was an appropriate thing to ask.

He smile fell and his hard face soon overtook his soft one.

I guess not.

“Don’t take this the wrong way Alexis but it’s really none of your business.” His voice monotone, stoic. I guess they can really turn it on and off whenever they pleased.

Realising I hit a rough spot, I quickly added, ” I’m sorry. I didn’t mean for you to take offense. I-”

“It’s okay, it’s just complicated.” He smiled but it didn’t quite reach his eyes, but it was enough to know that I still had a friend in him. I took it without hesitation and let the matter drop.

Opening the door for me, walking in what beheld me was what I could describe a marvel of a room; mats were stored carefully in what seemed to be a draught out pattern, a boxing kit was stored to the far corner of the room not even taking up a quarter of the space, multiple tall wooden stands with poles sticking out at random angles dotted around the place, a grand sized computer screen mounted on the wall seemed to be tracking everyone moments and for what I could tell, heart rates amongst other things, a tiny red dot appeared and following beside it was the name Alexis, it was tracking me, an array of more equipment I didn’t even know the name of and never seen in my life was situated at different stations, ice cold air quickly crashed out of the air conditioner, the pure white wallpaper clashing with the dark tiled floor. ^^^

A voice broke my inspection of the room, “Welcome to the Training Room or as I like to call it the three most gruesome hours of your human life.” The voice belonged to Veronica, as we locked eyes she try to stifle what I guess was a smile but came out blunt, short and cold. Well at least she tried. ^^^

“Hey, don’t scare the poor girl.” Only Elijah would say such an irritating and belittling statement like that. I wasn’t a child. How old were they anyway, eighteen maybe nineteen not a major difference from being sixteen. Was this his way of being kind? Or was this to just annoy me to a whole other degree?

Playfully Veronica stuck her tongue out at him which he responded by trapping her in a bear hug. The act was so distant yet so intimate. Were they together?

Zee quickly came up to me, giving me a small side hug, “Ignore them, ” She smiled showing off her pearly white teeth, I could see why Jordon was so enticed by her she really was the epitome of beauty, “Their just messing about, it’s not that bad.”

Raising my eyebrows waiting for her to carry on what this so called training would consist of.

“It’s just a couple round of partner sparring and then we go onto to our own individual stations-”

Hastily I asked, “What do you mean by sparring?”

She looked at me like if I’ve grown three heads, like the meaning of sparring was pretty self explanatory which now I completely agreed, “You know, some one versus one-”

Trying to hid my embarrassment but to no avail, “Yeah, I got it.”

Before I could ask her anything else a booming voice ruptured through, “Right!” Jordon stood in front of all of us, now only realising that we were in a perfectly straight line, everyone wore roughly the same type of clothing only the boys wore dark grey or maroon red sweatpants instead and of course Elijah without the shirt. “Everyone get into pairs, teach your partner everything you know and vice versa. Be rough, be brutal, don’t hold back.” Funny I thought this was just sparring not full on head to head action. “In courtesy of our new guest.” His eyes flickered towards me, “Whoever pairs up with her-tone it down. I don’t want anyone in the Sick Bay, okay?” It was strange how much he grabbed everyone’s attention, how authority flowed around him. I guess it made sense considering he looked a lot older than the rest, so he must of had more experience. It was slightly unsettling how emotionless his face could get, like he’s been broken down into the perfect solider. Willingly or unwillingly, that I wasn’t sure of.

Looking through my peripheral vision, Zee tensed up, biting her full lips, looking at Jordon with what looked like a hint of lust in her eyes. I’m guessing they’d no doubt a pair.

Jordon instantly locked eyes with her, offering her a hand, without hesitation she accepted. Throwing a quick, “Have fun.” My way they both headed, hands locked to a separate station. I just couldn’t picture Jordon hurting her, or Zee hurting him. But I guess in what they do they have to be completely prepared. Maybe, just maybe some day they could be really be fighting each other. But that was by far the most ludicrous idea I could possibly come up with, with the way they looked at each other, that would have been close to impossible.

“What do you say, partners?” A hand shot out, connected to Elijah’s face. I looked at him hard which he only smirked back, I didn’t really have much offers, I nodded proceeding to take his hand.

Suddenly Isaiah stepped in front of him, knocking his hand away and using his entire body to block him out. “Shall we go?” Smiling down at me, I couldn’t help but smile back, it was truly frustrating how all these emotions stirred up inside of me whenever he was around, there was too much I had a hard time picking one, everything clouded my right sense of judgement whenever he was around. I didn’t like that, I didn’t like that at all.

“I think she’s already taken Patriot, pair with Veronica.” Gently he pushed Isaiah out of the way, I could tell from that small movement, Isaiah’s eyes were blazing, but he was trying to hold it together which was ultimately failing.

“If you touch me again. I swear -”

Veronica edged in with a slightly irritated expression of what was unfolding in front of her, “Boys, boys, boys. There’s no need for this. Elijah you’re with me.” The tone of her voice held no room for a counter argument. “Isaiah, you can be with Alexis.” How she said my name with a slight bitterness reinforced the idea that she wasn’t too sure about me, like she was okay being my friend but also putting me at arms reach.

Elijah followed her to another station, I could tell quite reluctantly.

“I’m sorry about that. I didn’t want you to see this side of me, even If it was briefly.”

Looking up at him I couldn’t help but slightly scoff, “Isaiah trust me, you don’t intimated me.” No. But you make me feel things I didn’t think was humanly possible.

Smirking, he gently touched my lips, his gaze lingering on them before his face contorted in pain, like he was tired of holding something back, “Never said I did, Alexis. Never said I did.”

Hearing grunts and bodies connect to the cushioned floor, I could tell everyone was busy training. We just stood there. Me nervously. Him waiting for me to at least catch my breath. His touch, Isaiah touch stirred something up in me that I was struggling to suppress. Were these emotions at all normal?

“You ready?”

Hastily I nodded, knowing that if I spent a moment of hesitation, I would just chicken out. And I needed this training, I had no idea how to protect myself. So I guess it’s essential for survival.

“Okay.” Leading me to a training mat, he looked into my eyes, there were gentle, soft, somewhat understanding, “Don’t worry. It’s you’re first time, I’m not going to go full out, Alexis. We’ll build you up there, and one day you’ll be as good as me, maybe even better.” Despite him smiling up reassuringly, the only question that seemed to burn through my head was how long did I really have. Not even Isaiah could soften that worry.

I tried to muster up what was my best attempt of a smile, it didn’t seem to convince him, but he took what he could get. “Right. Position your body like this.” His hands grabbed my waist, even though I was clothed I swear I still feel his bare skin, the burning and the tingling sensation I was feeling was so enticing and so painful, placing my whole body into a forward stance, his arms skimmed up to my bare arms and I swear he was about to burn a hole right through my flesh, I could feel my breath hitching and I guess it was audible because he looked straight up, holding my gaze, “Place you’re arms up like this. It acts as a block from any oncoming attack. Especially use it when you parry. ” He place my arms up slightly vertical to each other, covering my face but leaving a little room for my eyes. “Alexis it’s important. Always block and try and get away from that situation. Most times you’ll be outnumbered, out skilled. Do you understand?”

My words stuck to the inside of my throat, I croaked a meek, “Yes.” With how close his was, I couldn’t focus on anything, not myself, not the others. Nothing.

“Listen, I’m going to coming in with a series of attacks,” He must of seen the look on my face because he quickly corrected himself, “Soft attacks, and see how efficiently you can block them. And we’ll go from there okay?” I nodded. “Don’t worry, I’m not going to hurt you.”

But that’s exactly what he should be doing, right? If I’m under attack, my attackers aren’t going to take in account that I haven’t been doing this very long, or I recently suffered a fall or I had no experience in any of this at all. But then my eyes glossed over to the others; Veronica slamming Elijah onto the floor, making sure his face was buried there and Elijah counteracting that with sweeping her off her balance and pining her down, Zee graced Jordon with a series of devastating blows which he quickly, easily evaded and blocked, Zee lost her footing and instead of Jordon taking his chance, he caught her placing a chaste kiss to her lips. He whispered something to her, I could see her eyes trained on him then she pulled in for a deeper kiss.

Maybe it’s safe to say that I’m not ready for the full training just yet.

“Alexis. Block!” Suddenly heavy hands swept my vision before even processing I threw my arms up instinctively into the Blocking Position. Surprisingly it worked holding off his incessant blows.

Here’s me thinking that this was supposed to be the easy version.

My arms started to ache, my position faltering, steadily using my back feet as a guide I started inching my way back which he took as a sign of weakness and started advancing. Despite the devastating blows, none were landing on my face, and the way my body was positioned was protecting my most vulnerable parts.

Finding a quick opening, I quickly evaded from his punches, dodging any further damage. He paused his back turned to me.

Nothing. Nothing was happening.

Was this all? Were we taking a much needed break?

My guard started lowering and I instantly regretted it, he swiftly turned round, giving such a quick blow to the stomach that it winded me and I lost my balance, landing with a big thud on the floor, which I assume grabbed everyone’s attention. “Alexis. Never ever lost focus! ” His eyes held something more than anger, it held from what I could tell disappointment, “Don’t expect your opponent to take a break. Or give you a chance to breath. They are always looking for a weak spot, where they can get you down and break you, don’t give them the opportunity. Do you understand me?” His tone came out harsh which I suspect was intended, he heaved I could tell he was trying to keep in control of his anger. “I couldn’t live with myself if something happened to you.” Again, he held my gaze, extending a hand which I took, returning back into my position and stance ready for round two, this time no distractions. None.

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