Book One: The Innocent Heart

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Part 9.1 of 1.10: Some training exercise...

Ash wandered around atop a rooftop of the ten story building. Another year passed slowly as the training transformed the thirteen year old girl. She exercised with punches and kicks while walking around the edge. Approaching a ledge, she stopped to look around the city. Sackie was there. Standing by Ash, the twin beast stood guard as the sun rose. Ceasing her punches and kicks, Ash rested before laying herself on the roof. Placing her arms on the surface, she began her pushups to strengthen her core and abs.

Finishing their little exercise, they walked to the edge of the roof and jumped down. Side by side, they walked across the balcony. Stepping over the ledge with her heavy metal toed black leather boots, Ash looked down to see how far up they were. Gathering some spit around her mouth, Ash spat at the mortals below. Sackie looked at her and smirked humorously.

Letting out a growl, Ash walked off from the edge. Sackie followed her across the balcony to a small alley below. They saw two boys fighting in the alley. Ash knew why they were fighting. She didn’t like the reason. They were fighting over to whether to let her continue her underground fighting or not. Spying the bar above her, Ash jumped and grabbed hold of the metal. Pulling herself up, she grunted feeling the muscles in her arms tightened. The beast scowled at the two boys.

Sackie stood before the edge and smirked staring at the boys fighting among each other. The twin beast shared Ash’s hatred for them including Tyler. Ash, the dark beast, was equal to her so Sackie figured she had to follow suit in order to stay on her side. Crossing her arms, the Paxxian mixed breed scoffed while gathering spit in her mouth. Leaning over the edge, she spat as Ash jumped down from the bars.

Standing over the edge, Ash growled at Sackie. Slapping her hand on her shoulder, she pushed her twin beast aside before sitting down on the edge. Sackie yowled silently while almost losing her footing over the edge. Catching herself, she snarled watching her dark twin sit down before joining her. Seated next to each other, they watched the boys bicker against each other.

It was eleven thirty AM, April third, Cameron’s birthday. Cameron invited the only two people that impacted him. Tyler and Ashlyn were invited just so he could talk to them. Cameron didn’t know Sackie so she wasn’t invited. They already ate lunch at a restaurant. Cam turned twelve, but he still bickered with Tyler like a child. Tyler was only three years older than Ash. However, his birthday was the month after Cameron, so he was still fifteen. The Stryker will turn sixteen at May twenty third.

Sackie was the same age as Ash. Letting out a snarl, Ash removed her shirt fitting it through her long dark curled hair. She tossed it aside leaving only her tank top. Gripping with her gloved hand over the ledge, she watched the two boys squabbling against each other. Cameron still didn’t trust Tyler.

Touching the pocket of her camo baggy shorts, Ash removed a medical canister. It was time for her medicine. Removing the cylindrical medical device, she flexed her left arm and placed the medicine onto her bulged bicep. Pushing down on the trigger on the top, she watched as the red liquid was injected into her bloodstream and dispersed among her skin. It changed color for a few moments before returning to her normal tanned skin.

Sackie watched her dispose the empty canister safety and capped. Ash placed it back into her pocket. Turning to her side, Ash uttered a grunt to her twin beast and slapped her muscled shoulder. She braced herself jumping down from the ledge. Sackie jumped down. They fell on the ground on all fours ramming her fists onto the ground. Getting up, the twin beast stumbled and ran into her dark beast.

Ash grunted with annoyance and snarled turning onto her twin beast. Sackie gasped as Ash backed her against the wall with her intimidating aura. Hitting the wall, the half Paxxian whimpered softly averting her eyes. Looking into the dark eyes of Ash would be like a challenge and Sackie learned that the hard way so she submitted herself wisely before her. The thirteen year old alpha beast growled placing her hand on Sackie’s neck. Gripping her throat, she snarled moving herself closer to sniff Sackie’s smell.

Sackie kept her eyes averted while growling with submission. Baring her fangs, Ash snarled whispering into her ear, “Remember why you are here. Watch your footing or it will be your last.”

The twin beast nodded and whimpered still averting her dark eyed gaze, “Understood, Shalyn.”

Satisfied, Ash let go and turned away. Sackie stumbled to her feet and regained her composure as she followed her alpha beast. Flicking her long dark curled hair back, Ash took out a bandanna. Rolling it up, she placed it around her head and tied it off under hair to soak up the sweat. Sackie walked side by side with her as they walked towards the boys. Both Cameron and Tyler’s muffled argument were now louder as they argued in the alley while pushing against each other.

Part 9.2 of 2.10: A slight flashback...

Hey,” Cameron shouted at Tyler. They sat before the counter in a bar. Tyler and Ash were next to him as they ate their food. It was Eleven AM. He invited both of them for his twelfth birthday and talked about the underground. Cam took his fry and dug it into his ketchup. Putting it into his mouth, he spoke, “The underground thing.”

Ash was next to Cameron as she dug into her cheeseburger. Tyler retorted tossing his own French fry at him, “What about it?”

“Hey,” Cam exclaimed as he caught the fry. He bit at it and scowled responding, “I don’t understand the whole thing.”

Tyler let out a sigh. He looked over toward the hunched over thirteen year old girl next to him. Taking a sip out of his drink to dampen his parched throat, he explained, “I already told you Cammy! The fighting! The thrill! The bloodletting! It makes us stronger and prepares us for what’s coming ahead. Not something your petite brain will comprehend.”

Cam let out a snarl at the insult as he shot his rival a glare. However, Ash took out her fork and slammed it on the table. She neatly missed Tyler’s hand as he withdrew it. He inhaled sharply. Ash scowled coldly at him responding with a warning, “Watch it, Ty.”

Tyler raised his hand in defeat as he dug into his own chicken sandwich. Cameron took another fry and argued, “Well what I’ve heard about, it’s still bad. Ash, it’s not good to be fighting all the time. Sure it makes you stronger, but it’s violent and still dangerous.”

Ash was still hunched over eating her food. Finishing off the last bite of her cheeseburger and drinking the last of her root beer, she responded looking at Cameron without emotion, “What would you have me do, Sheppard?”

Cameron shrugged with a mutter, “I don’t know! Try a different, safer method of growing up?”

Tyler was about to say something, but hesitated when a red velvet cupcake on a plate was placed before him. His half eaten plate was taken away. Letting out a snarl of distaste for the bakery treat, he shoved it aside changing his mind. The Stryker responded pointing his finger up, “Check please!”

Tyler finished his drink and paid his tab. Turning from his bar stool, he left the two kids alone. Taking out a cigarette box, he banged the box against his palm. Withdrawing a small cigarette, he placed it in his mouth. Taking out his lighter, he lit the end of the smoke and walked out as he blew a puff out of his mouth. Putting away his lighter, he removed his cig and blew the rest of the smoke out.

Inside the restaurant, Ash gobbled her red velvet cake like a beast. Cam paid his bar tab for both himself and Ash. Grabbing his own cake, he ate it on the way out. He followed Tyler along the sidewalk into an alley. Smoke billowed as Tyler smoked his own cigarette. This was at the point of time where most cigarettes are safer than they were in the past. They were non addictive.

Tyler was near the legal age of seventeen to be able to smoke. However, being fifteen, and the son of the Admiral, he was spoiled enough to start smoking at his early mid-teens. Taking his place back to the wall, Tyler leaned against the wall with his foot resting against the stone. Smoking the cigarette, he blew another puff of smoke. He was still the roguish bad boy.

Part 9.3 of 3.10: Tyler and Cameron face off...

Cam approached him. He was still eating his cake. Clearing his throat, he responded to the older boy, “Tyler. You know. These are bad for you.”

Tyler let out a low snarl as he removed the cig and puffed the smoke at Cameron. He gathered his spit and spat to his side. Scowling at the birthday boy, Tyler retorted, “So is eating cake.” Grabbing the cake from Cameron’s hand, he tossed it aside and leaned against the wall while placed his hand into his pocket.

“Hey,” Cameron protested when he lost his cake. He scowled at Tyler as Tyler kept his cig in between his finger and beside his leg. Taking his thumb, he flicked the ashes off the edge of his smoke. Cameron took his hand to wave the smoke away. Coughing a little from the smoke screen, he responding, “So.”

“So, what,” the rogue inquired harshly. Cameron responded again, “The-” Cam was interrupted by a low snarl from behind. Ash regarded both the boys coldly and entered the alley. Tyler looked at her as he placed the cig back into his mouth. He met her gaze. Ash walked up toward them as both boys were silent. She opened her mouth and bared her teeth. Turning away from her, they boys resumed their argument.

Seeing the white, creamy frosty left on his thumb, Cameron licked his fingers. Sticking his thumb into his mouth, he licked the frosting off and smacked his mouth. Looking at Tyler, he spoke, “The underground. I still think it’s not a good place.”

The older boy sighed. Moving forward, he shoved him against the wall responding, “Why do you care? Since when- Why are we still arguing about this? I just gave you an answer!”

“Because” Cam started to speak as Tyler laid back against the wall again blowing another puff of smoke. He stopped as Ash approached Cameron and shoved him against the wall. She regarded him with distaste as she lightly snarled at him.

“Hey what” He protested. The boy was cut off when Ash snarled at him responding, “You confuse me, Sheppard. First, you are strong. Then, you are weak, only to become strong again. Stop talking or asking too many questions and maybe I will listen.”

“But” Cam protested again. Ash ignored him and turned to Tyler with a scowl. Taking his cigarette, she flicked it onto the ground and stepped into it with the metal toe of her boot. Tyler exclaimed as he opened his arms in protest responding, “Hey! That was my smoke!”

Ash scowled at him and snarled before turning away from him. She walked away from the boys and towards the five foot tall building. Touching her ear piece, she activated a call and spoke, “Sackie. You want to run? Come meet me at my location.”

Soon as Ash finished her call, she took off running toward the wall. She rebounded with her foot against the wall and climbed it up to the top. With her flexed, rippling muscles, she pulled herself up over the ledge.

Part 9.4 of 4.10: As Ash and Sackie continue toward the boys, they prepare their run...

The scene flashed to the present. Ash made slow stride towards the boys with Sackie behind her. Their argument got louder and angrier with Tyler getting more impatient with Cameron.

“You can’t do this! The underground is no-” Cam protested.

Tyler shoved him against the wall with a heated response, “Oh yes it is, Cam-boy. It’s the only way to allow her to contain her beast and build her strength through training. She’s already gotten-”

Cam snarled and punched him across the face. He didn’t like to be shoved. He retorted, “There is another way and it doesn’t involve bloodletting! The underground fighting should be illegal and-”

Wiping the blood from his lip, Tyler angrily spat back, “You and what army? The SIAD pays for them and most of their agents require this sport. She needs this!”

Cam crossed his arms and scowled at him. He responded, “Well said for a future SIAD agent. You are a mere mudpuppy compared to what you’re putting her through!”

“RWAR!” Tyler shouted raising his fist. He aimed to punch Cam on the face as he spat, “Don’t call me a mud-”

Before them, Ash snarled scowling at the boys. Turning behind her, she nodded at Sackie. Sackie took it as the signal and uncrossed her arms. Clenching her fists, she stormed past Ash and growled. Grabbing Tyler’s fist, she yelled pushing the Stryker back and thrust him against the wall with a protest. Letting him go, Sackie turned to Cameron and shoved him against the wall.

The boys groaned painfully at the half Paxxian’s strong arm. She shouted at them both, “Enough! Ash is not to be pulled around like some damned trophy! Let her decide on her own. You two bicker like pathetic weak younglings scrounging for the last scraps!”

The boys stared at her and gulped. Before they could respond, Ash yelled from behind them and charged barreling past Sackie thrusting her onto the birthday boy. The twin beast grunted annoyed and shouted after her dark beast, “Hey!”

Cam yelled and tried to run after Ash, but was shoved harshly by Sackie. Facing him, Sackie punched him back with her body pushing Cam against the wall as she barreled past to match her speed with Ash.

The twelve year old stood to run but Tyler grabbed him harshly. He shoved Cam harshly aside onto the alley wall and spat, “Get outta my way, mudpuppy!”

Turning around, Tyler sprinted forward to catch up with Ash’s quick, adrenaline boosted strides. Cameron shouted running after Tyler. He was getting tired of being pushed around.

Ash’s quick strides, increased metabolism and stamina pushed her across the alley. Her agility came into play as she ran across the short alley. Jumping over the extended board, she fell through the air onto the ground. Sackie joined her side by side as they fell onto the ground, rolled and sprinted away.

Tyler was first onto the board and jumped off. He closely followed by Cameron as they flew across the air. Tyler fell to the ground fist and knee first. He crouched to prevent injury as his entire body was coiled for the impact. He sprinted forward as Cameron rolled to the ground near him. Cam yelled rushing after him. The race to catch up with the twin beasts was on.

Part 9.5 of 5.10: Oh just some simple running exercises...

On the ground and running, Ash picked her own path forward. Sackie matched her speed as they reached the end of the alley. They were no amateurs as they explored the city for their training run. They have been doing this for a couple years training so they knew the city by heart. Crossing the street, two oncoming cars came their way.

One of cars screeched and honked at them. The other car from the opposite direction shouted at them. He cursed as the car stopped suddenly. Ash jumped over the car and placed her gloved hand on the side. She propelled herself over the roof and placed her feet on the other side of the edge of the car. She pushed herself off the car onto the ground and rolled. Sackie followed suit joining Ash’s side. They sprinted forward.

Tyler and Cameron picked their sides as they sprinted across the road. Cam grabbed the trunk of the first car propelling himself over as Tyler went to the other side of the car. He jumped over the engine and slid across with a yell. He shifted gears as both cars drove their way to cross each other.

As the older boy slid across the hood, he twisted around violently squeezing himself in between the closing gap of the two cars. Tyler did a handstand on the hood of the other car propelled himself again over. Touching the ground, he slipped and rolled. Cameron rushed past Tyler as he got a head start. Ty rose to his feet quickly and sprinted after him.

Ashlyn and Sackie exited into another alley. With increased speed, they ran up the wall and bounded to the next wall of the alley. They pushed off again with great exertion into the ledge. At the same time, they pulled themselves completely up onto the roof of the other building. Turning around, they watched as the boys attempted to catch up. Offering her hand, Sackie placed her curled hand forward. Ash noticed it and nodded as she grabbed her hand. It was their own handshake as they squeezed their palms together. Letting go, they closed their fist and rapped their knuckles in a fist bump before sprinting away from the boys.

Cameron followed and was about to climb up, but Tyler reached him first. The older and taller boy used him as a ladder climbing his back. Cam grunted painfully as he was thrust forward. He stumbled and yelled with anger as Tyler climbed to the top. The birthday boy ran back a couple steps and sprinted forward to the garbage bin. He jumped and pushed himself off against the wall. Pushing again with strength, he grabbed that same ledge. Scaling the wall, Cam almost fell as he grabbed hold of the final ledge with his fighting gloves. He pulled himself using his feet against the wall and pushed himself up.

Letting out a yell, he took off the direction after Tyler again. Ashlyn and Sackie took the lead. Her dark curled hair waved behind her as she increased her speed across the roof. Sackie matched her speed as they jumped off into another roof. They went into a barrel roll. Cameron matched his speed with Tyler as they jumped off the same time while yelling manly. They aimed for the slightly lowered roof and barrel rolled and sprinted after the twin beasts.

Part 9.6 of 6.10: With the beasts ahead, the boys lagged behind...

Ash and Sackie ran across the open roof. They grabbed the banister pushing themselves over the small gap between the buildings. Running up the short wall, they grabbed the edge pulled up with their rippling muscles. Tyler and Cameron jumped over the banister in synchronize with each other and sprinted with the same speed. However, Tyler flipped over and fell to the ground with a roll. Catching up quickly, Cameron and Tyler scaled the wall quickly catch up. The boys were getting tired breathing shallowly. Ahead of them, they watched as the twin beasts jumped off the roof vanishing from view.

Catching up to girls over the ledge, the boys yelled and jumped off the roof without thinking. They screamed while flying across the air. They barely grabbed hold of the other ledge. As Tyler was jumping across, he saw Ashlyn actually grab the ledge, propel her over and into the tall parking garage for cars. Sackie did the same.

With one hand,Tyler grabbed hold of the ledge. However because of his short size, Cam missed the ledge entirely. He hit the wall hard and fell. Tyler shouting as he grabbed Cameron on the hand. The twelve years old yelled as he grabbed hold of Tyler’s hand holding on. Tyler kept his other on to the ledge to steady himself. It took a moment for Cameron’s brain to click and go into overdrive. From below, he noticed another garbage bin below him. Cam shouted, “Let go! I’ll be fine.”

Tyler smirked as he responded, “As you wish stinker.”

He let go. Cameron yelled falling a long way. With a grunt, he landed on the cover and rolled down onto the ground from the bin. Tyler grabbed with his free hand and pulled himself over with his supreme muscle power. Grabbing the ledge, he vaulted over. Sprinting across the garage from the ledge, Tyler looked over the other ledge inside the garage. He saw Ash and Sackie still running down the garage. Moving away from the ledge, he jumped over the second ledge again. Jumping across the air down the garage, he grabbed hold on the ledge. Quickly he flipped over as Ash and Sackie sprinted around the parking garage down.

Tyler chased the girls towards the oncoming car. It went into the garage to pay the toll. Stopping before the sprinting kids, the car honked its horn. Ash ignored the sound as both girls sprinted forward unheeded. They jumped onto the hood of the car and vaulted over the roof. Tyler took the short cut around the car. The car door opened to stop Tyler, but he grabbed hold of the door and pushed himself over. Sackie had already run ahead. The girls sprinted ahead still on the lead. Taking a right around the garage exit, she saw Cameron already halfway across the walkway. He was ahead of her.

Yelling with rage, Ash pushed herself forward as Sackie matched her speed. They caught up with Cam. Ash snarled smacking him on the head. She took a right around the street crouching like a beast to compensate for her speeding. Sackie did the same rather deftly. Cameron skidded to a halt stopping just short of a passing bus. It blared its horn as Cam yelled falling backwards. Tyler caught up as he skidded around the corner and ran hard. Hating to be left behind, Cameron let out a yell running after Tyler.

Part 9.7 of 7.10: Something to think about...

Seeing something and recognizing where she was, Ash skidded to a stop before a shop window. She tapped Sackie on the shoulder. Sackie stopped to look at the window. The two boys yelled failing to stop as they managed to skid past Ash. Ashlyn approached the window and placed her gloved hand onto the glass. She studied shimmering hologram of another fighting glove that she saw a couple weeks ago. The display was an advertisement as it wasn’t available.

Sackie inspected the advertisement with fascination. Tyler joined her side. Offering his smile, he responded, “I see you have your eyes on that one. My father-”

“To hell with him,” Cam barked as he took her other side. He got her attention responding, “Ashlyn, don’t do this. The underground fighting is too much. Please I don’t want you to.”

Tyler snarled at Cameron. He didn’t like his father being dismissed rudely. The Stryker snapped, “Cameron, shut up! You know nothing!”

Ash ignored their bickering. She was curious trying to figure out if it’s for sale or not. Tyler confirmed her suspicions responding, “Ash, this hologram just got there. It’s only a preview of what is to come. They are called BoxNet two point oh hundred. However, the new ungraded gloves aren’t ready yet. It won’t be ready for another two years or so that is if they haven’t kept putting it back.”

Ash inquired with curiosity and cooed, “When?”

“Some July of the year two hundred seventy one, but,” Cam responded still protesting, “fighting

isn’t the answer.”

At that, Ashlyn snarled looking at the gloves. Turning to Cameron, she spat, “Then why do you bicker behind my back, Sheppard?”

The young boy sighed with exasperation. Turning to Tyler, Ash inquired with curiosity, “Ty, you know more about these gloves. Tell me more.”

Cam moaned as Tyler grinned responding, “Oh yeah! They are pretty expensive and useful. Many SIAD agents want those as do most of the fighters. They have increased grip on the gloves for making scaling walls better. They resist pain more and have a better fighting power. They are also fingerless for better breathing and more simplistic down to earth style. They come in all sorts of colors. Oh and it tells whether you are healthy or when you need dire medical assistance soon. It’s awesome-”

The younger boy cut him off with a snap as Cam spoke, “It’s awesome if you desire to inflict your opponent with enough pain to daze him more so you can go in for the kill. I swear the better gloves you update the more you cheat to push yourself up. It’s like-”

Tyler snarled and rushed to smack him on the head. He shouted, “We don’t cheat!”

Ash let out a snarl. Grabbing his fist, she banged the hand against the glass wall. The glass cracked as she pushed Tyler onto the ground with a shout, “ENOUGH!”

Turning around, she kneed Cameron harshly onto the ground. Cam grunted in pain. Sackie followed suit as Cameron got up quickly. He delivered another blow across Tyler’s chin. Tyler fell back onto the ground spitting blood and a tooth. Cam shouted pointing at him, “Who’s cheating now?”

The boy ran off toward the girls. Tyler let out a snarl and ran after Cameron to catch up.

Both Ash and Sackie ran across the walkway jumped across the crossing street with another oncoming bus headed their way. The vehicle blasted its horn. Cam and Tyler skidded to a halt as the bus barreled past. They watched the girls sprint up the hill getting further away.

Part 9.8 of 8.10: What, still running? Where is the energy coming from?

Cameron muttered, “They’re crazy.”

Tyler laughed as he turned to his rival. He shrugged replying, “No we’re crazier to follow them.”

The boys let out a manly shout as they ran across the now empty street. Increasing their speed, they caught up with them.

The twin beasts cut across the park and jumped over the railing onto the ground. They neatly uprooted the sign that said, ‘Keep off grass!’

Tyler jumped over the railing to race after her. He trampled over the fallen sign. Cameron took the other way around. It was a short cut. He jumped scaling the ten feet bricked wall. Grabbing the ledge, he jumped over and down the ground. Hitting the ground, he did a rolling maneuver and sprinted across the pathway. He rushed past the protesting park goers. Ash and Sackie was running in one direction

across the grass with Tyler on their heels. The spectators protested as they shouted at the kids.

Cameron made his way close to the grass while saying off the greens. He jumped up to a tree branch and pushed himself across. Reaching to the other side, he ran up to a park bench. Two people sat on the side. Pushing off with a yell, he landed on the edge of a large fountain. Balancing himself, he leapt spinning backwards in the air for extra boost and landed onto the path without touching the grass. Taking off , Cam sprinted toward an underground bridge. He rushed up as Tyler ran after the girls.

From across the grass, both Ash and Sackie leapt over the ledge. However, as Tyler jumped after them, he slipped. Yelling, he fell to the bottom of the bridge. The twin beast’s speeding fury leapt with an agility of a cat. They grabbed a bar and flipped themselves over to the top of the bar. They leapt again reaching the other edge of the ledge barely. The girls pulled with their rippling muscles over the ledge.

They pulled themselves completely up and sprinted. Tyler fell to the ground, steeled himself and harmlessly rolled himself onto his back. He jumped up and crouched as Cameron barreled past his rival. He gave one victorious shout as it echoed among the walls, “HAH!”

Getting up, Tyler snarled sprinting to match Cam’s speed as they raced out of the underground tunnel. They ended up on the other side of the street. Ashlyn ran up the street side by side with Sackie. The boys sprinted after them as both Ash and Sackie vanished over the top of the street.

The twin beasts kept their speed across the short street before it dipped down and swerved slightly. Jumping onto a parked car, they ran to the pole overhanging. Jumping up, they grabbed hold pushing them in the same momentum as it moved them closer to the top of the building.

With a snarl, Ash’s violet eyes shimmered slightly as she watched a five year old boy stared back at the beast. He was at awe while holding his train toy. The boy’s kitten jumped onto the window and purred as it rubbed its fur against the glass. With her strength, Ash pulled up looked for a ledge. She climbed pushing herself completely up. Sackie wasn’t far behind. Climbing to the edge and perching on the ledge, Sackie Looked back down at the boys with scowl and snarled baring her small fangs at them.

Getting up, the brown haired beast approached Ash spat harshly as she pointed at the boys, “Why are they your friends? I thought you said no one is your friend?”

Ash let out a derisive snort as she looked back at them. Her disheveled, curled hair overshadowed her eyes as she watched the two boys groan stopping before a lamppost. They bent over fighting for their breath. She responded, “They are not my friends. They are trying to follow me hence our little workout. I’m surprised they lasted this long.”

Part 9.9 of 9.10: The choices that we make...

The boys groaned bending over and panted heavily. She regarded them with pity as she walked from sight. Taking her band, she pulled her hair back and tied it into a ponytail. Ash walked to the edge of the roof. Sackie followed her. Turning to Sackie, Ash placed her body close to her and tapped her waist. She looked at her with a grunt and responded, “I’m done for the day. You may go. Good run.”

Sackie nodded as they bumped fists. She took off on her own. Using her cat-like agility and grace, the twin beast leaped from the building to a lower ledge. Turning back to the horizon, Ash watched as the sun moved down behind a building. Sitting down on the edge, Ash looked across the city landscape.

Meanwhile, Tyler pointed to one direction toward the building the girls vanished into. He slapped Cam on the back responding, “This way, we’re not done yet.”

“No, you are done,” Cam muttered breathlessly racing after him. Tyler ran up the fence and propelled himself over. Cameron followed him as they sprinted across the yard. A dog barked at them. They scaled the tall building and climbed the ladder. Finally, they pushed over the wall to a balcony. They pulled themselves up.

Soon Tyler reached the top and held his hand down for his friend and rival, “Cameron, take my hand. Let’s go to Ash together. We went this far.”

Cam muttered brushing his hand away coldly. He helped himself up pushing Tyler aside harshly and muttered at him harshly, “Go to hell.”

Cameron hated Tyler. Getting himself up completely, Cam walked away. Tyler brushed himself off muttering and shrugged, “I just offered my help.”

Taking out his box again, he took his smoke and lit it. Placed both the box away and pocketing

his lighter, he blew a puff of smoke walking towards his two friends. Tyler stopped for a minute and

looked around. He muttered inquiring, “Where did Sackie go?”

Cameron stopped beside the seated Ash. He spoke while watching the sun go down, “Ashlyn, let us

go from this place. Come to the orphanage. I will make sure your father doesn’t hurt you any longer.”

Ashlyn let out a snarl at the mention of her father. Tyler took his seat next to her. As he blew another billow of smoke, he spoke while holding his cig out between his fingers speaking, “Don’t listen to him,

Ashlyn. Stay with me in the underground fights. Keep training. Soon, you will have enough strength to finally fight and kill him.”

Ash watched the sun go down vanishing behind the buildings. She had two choices. Listen to Cameron and go with him to the Orphanage or go with Tyler to stay in the Underground fights. In a ways, they were the two conscious speaking for her. One was an Angel while the other was the Devil.

She was still confused. Both boys were fighting for her heart. They were forcing her to pick between them. She didn’t know the answer to either question. She met Tyler first and he already made his choice. However, he broke his promise to her and the beast looked down on that. Cameron was the innocent one that she met a little later. She let him live because of his innocence.

Part 10.10 of 10.10: ...define who we are...

Cameron was born parentless. Yet he had a soft heart. While being raised in the orphanage, he was raised and blessed by the goodness of a Tricetra. He knew nothing about greed or money. An’pol never spoiled him as he was raised properly by his adopted mother.

Tyler was born a selfish, spoiled brat with a rich father who was a well-known admiral. His mother died when he was young. He had a brother who was born right after the death of his mother. He was an angry ball of fire just like Ash. He only knew of his father and his father knew nothing of raising him properly so he fed him credits just to run his own team at a young age. That was how he got to be so good. He bragged about his wins like a show-off. Tyler was the born to be rogue bad boy and a charmer of girls.

Ash was in the middle of the two boys who were still bickering like rivals. She lost her mother at young age. Being abused by her father, she fought to strive to get better. However, she was still misguided as she was unsure of what she will choose.

Letting out a harsh growl, Ash left the boys with the unanswered questions by gripping the edge of the roof. She pressed her running shoes against the wall and pushed off with all her strength. Falling down the building, she scaled the wall to slow her descent and jumped towards the rod on the other side of the wall across from her.

Cameron gasped with morbid fear as she fell. He looked over watching her. Tyler looked on with a unique fascination of watching her attempting to kill herself in a unique fashion. They watched her grabbed the rod. The rod broke. It made them both have their stomach jump out of their mouth as they gasped with concern for their girl.

Ash grunted with her fighting gloves and running shoes against the narrow wall. She fought with friction against the wall to slow her descent down. Pressing firmly onto the wall, she jumped off using her aerobatic move across the five story drop towards the hanging stairway. The metal stairway broke under her weight. Looking up, she briefly gazed at the boys’ mortified glance.

They watched as Ash kept on falling down. Twisting around with her body, she grabbed onto the metal rod. The rod cracked under her weight again, but it lessened her fall as she coiled herself for the shock. She pounded the ground with her fists and sprinted away firmly from the boys.

Watching her run away until she finally vanished in a blinding light of the transporter, Cameron let out another exasperated sigh as he took his seat on the edge of the rooftop. He watched the sun make its final journey down the sky. Cam muttered, “She’s not a lost cause, not yet. I can’t lose her.”

Tyler looked at his friend offering his gloved hand. He spoke, “Hey Cam. Let her make the decision. Soon she’ll come around. Just give her a chance. If I know her, she’ll-”

He was cut off by Cam’s snarl. The boy turned to him and spat angrily, “What do you know of her? You broke her promise and left her the moment you got kicked out of school by your inability to keep her in line. You know nothing!”

Tyler let out a growl. He spoke harshly, “And how do you know what she thinks of? You’re soft Cam boy and it’s confusing her.”

“You weren’t helping! I had to clean your mess.” Cam growled looking back at the coming darkness. Looking into the stars, he responded, “Now shut up! Let me have some peace an’ quiet jerk!”

The older boy grinned at him shrugging. Looking out into the darkness, he took out his spent cig and stifled it on the ledge beside him. Blowing his final puff of smoke, he muttered, “Fine by me.”

Meanwhile, Ashlyn reappeared in a blinding light across the grass from her father’s home. Slowing down before the house, she opened the door and entered. Letting out a low growl, she walked through the dimmed house. Across the hallway, she heard her father play again singing for his love. Shaking her head, Ash uttered a disgusted snarl. He was portraying weakness she abhorred.

Entering the kitchen, she took out a water bottle and downed the entire thing in gulp before tossing it into the sink. She was thirsty. Reaching her bedroom, Ash plopped onto the bed tired. Darkness filled the air outside the Techryn household as Ash fell asleep to her father’s mournful singing and playing the piano.

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