Don’t Forget Me
Panic shot through Tony’s skull like a bullet through a ripe melon. The sudden fear splattered his reasoning all over the place. He didn’t know what to do; he didn’t know where to go. He was completely helpless and trapped. Tony stepped back a bit and contemplated his complex situation. He couldn’t just run… where would he go? The ship was so big and foreign to him. He would be caught in seconds should he attempt to flee in any direction. He was trapped.
I need Evila, thought Tony frantically. With her, I might have a chance to survive. He clinched his fists into thick round balls as his breathing became more frantic and wild. He could feel blood pumping in his ears like a violent tempo. His fight or flight response was kicking in.
A slight whimper escaped his lips as he thought about the dead detective lying on the ground before him. He had said everything was going to be okay. He had promised him citizenship and safety. Everything seemed too surreal. It was like he was walking into a living nightmare. The Dean had just murdered someone, right in front of his eyes. Obviously the man had no respect for life and Tony didn’t know what he would do next. Destruction seemed eminent!
Tony swallowed the lump forming in his dry throat. He shifted his gaze from the dead body and looked over at the Dean. The crazy man was staring at him now with a stone hard expression. His terrible features radiated a composure that was disturbing. Tony knew the look was a cover-up, to hide the true monster inside. His expressions were nothing more than a mask he put on to show he had not lost his integrity. Tony could feel rage brewing under the Dean’s pale green skin. This man was insane!
The Dean stepped forward a little and let out a heavy breath of air into the still atmosphere. His neon green eyes were burning brightly now, like two round suns they were burning like. With each passing second Tony could feel his courage beginning to slip. His thoughts were fleeing him.
“Now, tell me, you walking abomination, what does your human species fear the most? And be honest with me. No lies,” said the Dean sharply.
Tony kept his distance. He thought about the weird question. “I don’t know what we all fear. We’re all different! We all have different things we fear. No one is the same.”
“I am sure you humans share a common fear. So, don’t give me this crap about you being different. You’re all the same to me! You all have the same fears… dark fears that are waiting to get out. They just need to be jogged from your subconscious. I will help you pull them out! I will help you examine them!”
Tony couldn’t tell what the Dean was getting at. He started walking around the room slowly still keeping his distance. “I don’t know what you’re talking about! What do we fear? What does that mean? What kind of question is that?”
The Dean seemed undaunted that Tony didn’t know what he was getting at. He kept following him around the room. He cleared his throat as he continued. “For centuries you humans have fought for survival. For centuries you have prevailed over your environment, batting down anything that would destroy you and your simple way of living. You build and invent things to keep yourself safe! Now it’s all about to come to an end. Do you understand that, you pathetic fool? You will no longer exist in the known galaxy. Your race is going to join a long list of species that have been abolished from the universe. I have spent the last ten thousand years finding your kind and exterminating them. I have done it planet by planet, moon by moon, and asteroid by asteroid. Now the dream will be fulfilled! My vision will come to fruition!”
“You did what to us? Your dream—what?” asked Tony with sickening surprise. He had never known there was more than one Earth in the universe. He had always thought that humans were a special species that God had molded out of clay and placed in one particular spot in the galaxy. He had always thought they were unique to any other creation; a true one of-a-kind race. But now with the information the Dean had given him that did not appear to be the case. There had been more than one earth. Well, there had been until the Dean got to them and destroyed them. Why would God allow this, thought Tony with dismay. Doesn’t he care? Doesn’t he love us?
Dean Redder laughed at the worried expression written all over Tony’s face. He could tell that the fool was actually waking up to his fear. He was finally seeing through logical eyes. He was seeing the nothingness that would be waiting for him hereafter. His pitiful race had brain washed him with false theology.
“I killed you all…” The Dean paused and corrected himself. “Well, almost all of you. There’s still one planet in the galaxy waiting to be gassed with Professor Denvil’s animal altering formula, and that’s your planet, human! In a few short hours there will be nothing left of your species. You will all be gone and dead. Totally finished off by the very creatures you oppressed for so long. I can’t wait to watch it unfold. I can’t wait to watch your kind squirm and beg for mercy. I can wait to see them look up and call upon their primitive deities for help. Only to find that there isn’t anything there. I have seen it a dozen times before. I saw it—and laughed my head off at it all. Humans squirming and yelling. Humans fighting and running. Humans hiding and dying. Humans… Humans… Humans… Then silence….nothing but sweet, blissful silence over the communications. All dead! All gone the way of the earth as if it were in an hour!”
Tony was shocked. His hearts felt like melting at that moment. Everything he had been through in the past few hours was beginning to add up and make sense in his mind. It was as if a light had turned on in the dark places of his thoughts. The Tenatians were planning on feeding the entire human race to the animals of Earth. We would no longer exist! There would only be darkness to comfort them… forever.
Why, thought Tony bitterly. Why us? Why now?
He could see the green snake that had eaten him, vividly in his mind. He envisioned the massive thing dividing rapidly into two snakes, then four, then eight, then sixteen and so on until it reached a billion, then two billion. He saw them on Earth swarming through all the cities, through all the towns, through the shires, through all the suburbs and neighborhoods. He saw their wormy bodies with their big heads. He saw them with the rest of the massive animals on earth. He saw them hunting down the humans like small rodents. He watched with horror as they devoured his race one person at a time. He watched as they chewed, clawed, and gored violently at his people. A bitter sickness encompassed his stomach as he thought about his family. They would be down there… they would be down there!
“You can’t do this to us! We have done you no harm! We don’t even know you exist. Have you no respect for life? Have you no understanding? I thought our human species could be helpful to you. Detective Cuffers told me about the extinction of your race. He said humans are the solution. Would you just go and destroy your salvation like that? It would ultimately damn you! Think about it, man; if you have any common sense at all, you would not do this!”
Dean Redder grumbled loudly at this. He was growing weary of the same pathetic argument over and over again. It was as if no one saw the tragedy behind the matter of merging their species with the humans. They would lose everything if they mixed together with them. They would lose who they were as a Tenatian people. Humans would bring rapid reproduction to their species, that was true, but they would also bring their worthless culture. They would bring their silly traditions and most of all they would bring permanent dilution to their beautiful society! It was crazy talk to even think about. The humans had to be killed before anyone else found out what Evila had accomplished! They had to go!
Humans are the disease, thought the Dean sharply, and I… I am the cure. The Dean looked up from his thoughts. “I wouldn’t expect a pathetic creature like you to even fathom the ramifications of merging our races. There is only one destination for your kind and that is extermination.” He turned deliberately to one of the far corners of the dark room and waved his hand. “Professor Denvil, bring out the academy student, Evila. I want her here when the space officers arrive to collect this abomination! I want them both to go down to the lab together.”
Tony watched closely as the shadows on the far wall began to move. Evila and Professor Denvil stepped out into the open and started walking toward them. They had been watching and listening to everything unfold from the darkness. Tony could see silver tears streaming down Evila’s slender cheeks. She looked so sad and defeated! It was as if she had lost all will to live.
“Evila!!” yelled Tony suddenly. “Evila, are you all right?”
Silence hung in the air like a thick cloud as he waited for her to respond. She looked up at him, and their eyes locked together. Tony could see she was trying to give him a response. A faint smile crossed her thin green lips… then in seconds it was gone… as if he had imagined it all in his mind. Her soft green eyes looked back down at the carpet and went hollow. She was sadder than he had ever seen any one before, and what burned the most was that she said nothing to him. Doesn’t she love me? Aren’t we supposed to be together?
They must have hypnotized her in some way, thought Tony. He could feel his blood beginning to boil in his skull. His rage was building, and was almost too much to keep in check. They had hurt her in some way, he could tell.
“Evila, speak to me! Are you all right?”
Professor Denvil chimed in now. His voice sounded cocky and smooth. “It’s no use yelling at her, Tony! She is pacified by the electric arm bands I put on her. She is my little puppet now. She will do whatever I say. If I said ‘go kill yourself with a spoon’, she would do it in a heartbeat. If I said it she would do it!”
“If you harm her in any way, I will kill you,” barked Tony. He took a step forward and gritted his teeth in anger. He could feel a strange energy take flight in his chest. The sensation almost felt like someone had lit a bonfire in his veins. His toes curled tightly and his nail gritted against the dark carpet.
Professor Denvil laughed coldly at his threat. “Don’t worry, Tony. You’re going to die right beside her. We are going to put some pacifying bonds on you as well, and send the two of you down to Deck -X- where the S.O. will then throw the both of you into a steel chamber and gas the life right out of you. We win, and there is nothing you can do about it!”
Tony couldn’t take it anymore. He had to do something. He lunged forward at Professor Denvil with a shrieking howl. His dark nails sprang out suddenly from his blunt fingertips. His sharp teeth showed viciously in his mouth like pointed razors. He was going to rip the teacher apart for even suggesting Evila’s death.
Tony was within striking range when something hard slammed into his rib cage and sent him flying across the room. He let out a yell as his body collided with the far wall and hit the ground with a thud. He groaned slightly as he came to his hands and feet. His world was spinning.
“So, the human can dance like one of us! How interesting to see, but it won’t help your situation any, so don’t even try. You will die and Evila will die, and your pathetic human race will die! It’s hopeless; there is nothing you can do to save them. You can’t fight against the whole space academy; so stop trying!” growled the Dean with fury. He was walking over to Tony and stopped halfway.
Tony glared at him through half closed eyes. His mind was racing with a thousand thoughts and emotions. It was obvious this wasn’t going to end diplomatically. Their situation was just too complex.
“I won’t stop until you’re dead. I will kill you! I will kill you both!” yelled Tony as he sprang to his feet. His muscles flexed and tightened as he ran full speed at the red-headed Dean. His mind was filled with rage, anger, and hate. His arms stretched out for a powerhouse tackle. He was going to save Evila, and he was going to do it by tearing the Dean to shreds.
Dean Redder saw the hybrid’s bloodthirsty charge, and smiled. So, he thinks he can actually beat me, does he? Thought the Dean coldly. Well, bring it on human. He extended his claws and gritted his teeth. “Come to me human! I think I shall enjoy squeezing the life out of you, just like I did the rest of your species!”
They collided like two freight trains in a shipping yard. Tony knocked the Dean to the ground with his shoulder. Crouching over him he started pounding and clawing into his open chest. Growls and yelps sprang from their open mouths as they tumbled over the carpet like two mad dogs.
Dean Redder struggled desperately to block Tony’s furious assault. The hybrid’s claws were tearing through his skin like serrated knives. He managed to grab both of Tony’s wrists as they came down for another blow. The human fell forward a bit as the Dean pulled his legs in and kicked up into his stomach.
Tony let out a groan as he was thrown into the air. He flipped over the Dean’s body and landed on his back with a loud crash. He grimaced as he slid a few feet on the rough carpet. The fibers tore at his back like a piece of sandpaper. He struggled to catch his breath as he turned over and readied himself for another assault.
The Dean was now coming to his knees, his breathing labored. He looked down at his tattered shirt with surprise and amazement. Silver blood was streaming from his ribcage and chest. He lifted a hand and placed it over his side. He cringed slightly as he touched the tender skin. The human had managed to hurt him quite badly.
He looked over to Tony. “You certainly are very strong for a human, but that doesn’t make you better than us. You will die; I‘ll be sure of that!”
“I am not human any more, Dean,” retorted Tony firmly. “Evila has changed me into something more powerful. I can feel it now. There is something inside of me that is better than you. I am stronger, and I am faster.”
The Dean felt like laughing at this. “Do you really think you’re the super species the crazy fanatics rave about in the halls? Do you really think you can make us better than we already are; that you’re the savior of our race? That’s crazy talk human. You can’t improve upon something that has no foibles. Our race doesn’t need help from a subspecies. Our race is perfect!”
“I can feel more changes happening inside of me, Dean. I can feel I am evolving slowly into what you fear—”
“Shut up!” yelled the Dean. “You are a nothing. Humans are nothings. They are just as worthless as a clump of dirt. You hear me? Dirt!”
“I would disagree strongly with that reasoning. We are the solution. We make you faster. We make you stronger. We make you smarter. I can feel myself evolving into something that is beyond your thinking. Soon there will be nothing but us left to govern the universe. Nothing but human hybrids!” said Tony smugly. He wanted the Dean to feel what it was like to be egged on into a fight.
Dean Redder yelled suddenly. “I will kill you and your little girlfriend! I will peel the skin from her body and make you watch it!” He bolted at the human; his claws were bulging from his fingers like thick round spikes. His eyes took on a hollow expression as if his soul had completely fled his body.
Tony was just coming to his feet when the Dean raked him across the face with his nails, the dark talons digging into his cheek like a shovel through soft soil. Tony let out a yelp as blood splattered across the room. He held out his hands as he toppled over, his face screaming with pain.
“I can’t wait for the day to come when no human shall be left to utter a word in the galaxy, where your kind will be only a fairytale to my people!”
Tony looked over at the Dean. Silver blood was dripping from his face. “You won’t have a people if you kill us.”
“Shut up!” yelled the Dean again, as he grabbed Tony and dug his talons into his exposed back. Tony let out an ear piercing scream as pain branched through his limbs and mind. It felt like the dean was ripping off chunks of his skin. He grabbed the Dean’s leg and squeezed it as hard as he could. The rough skin cracked loudly under the pressure of his fingers. Tony struggled to get to his feet. Blood was now pouring from his back and drenching his sides.
“It’s useless to resist me, human!” barked the Dean over the pain in his leg. He picked up Tony and threw him across the room with a great heave. Tony flailed his arms and legs frantically before he hit the far wall with a loud bang. His body tumbled to the base of the wall and started shaking.
Dean Redder smiled at this. He had thrown the hybrid so hard he had left a dent in the steel paneling. He started limping towards Tony’s beaten frame. He spoke softly as he went along. “I know what you fear, human, and you are going to face it. Whether by my hand or another, you will face it.”
Tony tried to crawl away.
Dean Redder saw the action and almost came unglued. “Oh, no you don’t!” He ran up to the human and started kicking him violently in the chest. He mumbled loudly to himself as he delivered each horrific blow. His words blended into a tapestry of curses and nothingness. His anger was boiling red hot. Tony tried desperately to block the kicks but found it futile. He was going to die this way. A stray kick landed right under his jaw. Tony’s world went black as he passed out on the ground.
Dean Redder stopped kicking him as Tony went limp. He stepped back and studied his victim with frantic eyes. The human appeared to be out cold. Tony’s bloody back moved up and down slowly with his shallow breathing. The Dean lifted up a pale green hand and ran his trembling fingers through his red hair. He couldn’t believe how strong Tony had been during the fight. It took all his effort to keep from losing the battle. It was true; the pathetic creature was evolving into something stronger than the Tenatian race. It had to be stopped.
“Professor Denvil, could you bring over some more pacifying bonds and place them on the human. I want him and Evila to be sedated when the officers arrive to take them to Deck -X-. I don’t want either of them telling their stories, and I most definitely don’t want any other delays from here on out. The human’s evolution is almost getting out of hand. He’s changing!”
Professor Denvil was standing in the middle of the room. He tightened his grip around Evila’s arm. He couldn’t believe the Dean hadn’t finished off the pathetic human. He protested. “Dean Redder, why don’t you just kill the hybrid right now and be done with him? Kill him before the evolving process is complete. We can tell the S.O. that he attacked you and you defended yourself. Kill him!”
“I can’t kill him!”
Dean Redder turned around slowly and looked at the professor. A sort of mock dignity played across his features, “Because I am not a barbaric human like he is. Our culture… our people are above that nonsense now! We are the better species. We are no longer belligerent and violent. If we have to kill, it will be in a civilized way. It will be in a gas chamber, just like we planned it.” He straightened up and patted his bruised chest with pride. He could feel blood running down his stomach.
Professor Denvil nodded his head halfheartedly. He still wasn’t too convinced about the motive of sparing the hybrids life. Their people had never abolished violence from among them, it was everywhere still, “I suppose you’re right. If we had killed him we would be no better than that pathetic creature! We are not barbarians.” He let go of Evila and walked over to Tony’s unconscious frame. He pulled out the electric pacifying bonds and quickly placed them on his wrists. They locked with a clink.
“I’ll go call the S.O.” said the Dean as he limped over to his steel desk. When he got to it he pressed the red emergency button in the corner. In seconds his problems would all be solved.
* * *
To Evila, everything seemed like a nightmare. She could not scream for help. She couldn’t move her limbs. She was trapped inside her mind. She wanted desperately to fight along side with Tony. She wanted to get wild; she wanted to dig her claws into the Dean like Tony had done during the fight.
If only I were free, thought Evila, maybe then I could help. More tears came running down her cheeks. They were not tears of sadness; oh no, they were tears of utter frustration. She had just watched the Dean beat her soulmate within an inch of his life. She had watched and could not do anything about it. Anger and rage began to stir inside her chest. Her eyes gazed at Tony’s quiet frame lying on the ground; how she long to be with him again. How she wished she could help.
They have no idea what they have gotten themselves into, she thought coldly. Her eyes narrowed. Tony is evolving into something better than us all. He was faster during the fight. He was stronger. He was like a wild animal. Evila smiled slightly at her own word choice; she liked hearing them in her mind. She liked knowing that soon Tone’i would be more powerful than anyone in their race, but what she liked most of all was that he was hers, and she was his. They where bound together by blood….
Things are going to change around here, thought Evila. I will ruin the Dean’s precious plans somehow, and I will do it with the help of Tone’i. The whole academy will know of my achievements before the end… everyone will know… even the humans.
She smiled a big smile. It took all her energy to do so.
In seconds the room was filled with space officers from the lower Decks. They grabbed her and Tony and left the Dean’s office. They both were going down to Deck -X-. Charged with the murder of Detective Cuffers.