The Birds Of Prey Book One: Rise

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Chapter 7: Separate Ways

"So we've waited for the three days like he asked us to...what do we do now?" asked Mili.
"He said to activate the device and he will find us," replied Fabiana.

I shook my head.

"Where does this guy get off being some kind of masked vigilante," asked Nate.
"We'll find out when he arrives here,"

It didn't take long for Fabiana to suddenly look up.

"I hear someone coming," she said.

Within seconds, there was a knock on the door. I approached the door and opened it...only to see no one outside.


I turned back and ran into the room to see that a man had somehow entered the house.

"How the hell did you get in here?" snapped Nate.
"I can travel through shadows," he replied.

Carl reached for his sword, only for the man to halt him with four tendrils coming out of the shadow of the couch. Nate tried to strike him as well, but was pinned to the floor by even more tendrils. The man looked at Fabiana.

"You didn't tell me that there were others here," he said.
"I didn't get the chance to say anything to you considering that you just got up and left," she snapped back.

She raised her hand.

"Let them go...they're my friends," she said.

The man nodded and released both of them.

"You realize that you've given Baneford every reason to come to Canada to look for us right?" I shouted.

The man turned to me and shook his head.

"He was going to come here anyway in a few days to do a clean sweep of the entire country...he has the manpower to do that and The Purity is everywhere," he explained.

As if on cue, the TV suddenly turned on.

"Good! Everyone is here!"

I saw a black silhouette on the screen.

"I know all of you must have questions but we can handle that part later...right now I have to tell you all a few things because things are going to change drastically,"

The man turned as if he were facing Nate.

"You lost your family to Baneford didn't you Nathaniel?" he asked.

Nate immediately clenched his fists.

"Carl lost a good portion of his life in servitude to Miles...until his compulsion broke off,"

Carl gasped audibly.

"How the hell did you know that?"
"I know a lot of things,"

He then turned to Fabiana.

"You and your best friend have been in hiding for all these years because Mili is considered a war criminal and you are one of the very few surviving Eagles left on the planet," he said.

The Eagle closed her eyes and looked away.

"And you both lost your parents to the invasion," he continued.
"How the hell do you know so much all of us?" I snapped.

The man took a breath and shook his head.

"I know this has been a very strange few days but hear me out,"

The man wearing the mask and hood approached the TV.

"You can show them now,"

He lowered both the hood and the mask to reveal his face.

"I was the one who did most of the killings," he said.
"But I am the original Ogre; Alex here took up the mantle once I made a mistake,"

Carl shook his head.

"You better start explaining yourself because you've sent us all on a wild goose chase for the past week," he snapped.

The man chuckled.

"No...I brought all of you together for a reason...and if you'll wait just for a moment, the next person should arrive,"

Almost as if on cue, a knock was heard. Fabiana answered it and much to our astonishment, it was Doan.

"Fabiana?! You're here for the party?!" she asked.

Her eyes narrowed as she allowed her in. Everyone looked at her as the man on the screen laughed.

"She had all of you fooled? How could you not tell that she is an Eagle?"

My eyes widened in shock as Doan sighed deeply.

"Well, I guess it was worth a shot to hide and live a normal life," she said.

She then looked at Carl before her eyes turned green. For some reason, he was frozen solid; he wasn't moving at all.

"Could you get me a can of soda at least?" she asked.

Much to my astonishment, Brandon did as she said without even questioning it.

"Her gift is the ability to compel anyone she makes eye contact with...along with mind reading,"
"That's-" I began.
"Cool?" said Doan.

I shook my head, causing her to make a sound half way between a laugh and a giggle.

"So are you going to explain why you brought all of us here?" asked Nate.

The screen shifted to a picture of a young man.

His skin was just a shade above cream in color and he had Japanese features though his facial structure was more rounded than straight, indicating that he wasn't fully Japanese. He also had jet black hair that was completely unkempt.

"This man is Kit Matthews," he said.

I heard Fabiana gasp loudly.

"That...that's impossible...didn't he die with his parents in the raid on SkyTech?" she asked.
"He and his older sister Cassandra survived the raid because Alyssa Matthews used her gift to force Kit to run with he is very much alive," he explained.

She seemed shocked at the revelation.

"His mother gave him the one thing that Miles invaded the country for: all of the research that SkyTech conducted on the Raptor gene because Miles's ultimate goal is for The Purity to have total control of the world,"
"How exactly would the research do that?" I asked.

The screen shifted to an picture of a man strapped down to a table.

"Since the end of the invasion, Miles captured some of the Eagles and started to experiment on them in order to try and create a hybrid of Hawks and Eagles,"
"But...that's impossible; there's never been a hybrid," said Nate.
"It's very much possible with all of the research that Arthur and Alyssa conducted; before she died, she gave her son all of the research and he's been in hiding in this very country for the last few years,"
"So where exactly do we come in?" asked Doan.

The screen shifted to a woman.

"The last person who can be of help to you is another Eagle...who is Alex's stepsister,"
"Why the hell should we help this killer find his sister?" asked Nate.
"Because he only killed people who were affiliated with Baneford...they were compelled to do his bidding because his gift allows his assimilation to not kill; it instead enslaves them to his will until they die or they have fulfilled what he has commanded them to do,"

Carl returned and shook his head.

"What he says makes sense; he told me to become a strong fighter and once I assimilated those two Vultures...I suddenly began to feel remorse," he said.
"You accidentally killed that girl one year was not your fault Carl,"
"It's my mistake for trusting Baneford to give me the peaceful life I sought after for so long," snapped Carl.

The man cleared his throat.

"You need to find Iris if you're going to have any chance at taking Baneford down...all of you are powerful, no doubt about that but considering his innate gift as well as the fact that he has assimilated an unknown dozen of gifts, it doesn't hurt to be as prepared as you can be,"

Alex closed his eyes and much to my surprise, Doan approached him and laid a hand on his shoulder.

"I know what it's like to be separated from someone close to me...I lost my best friend in the invasion and to this day, I have no idea if she's alive but you know what? I live on because that's all I can do until the day I can find closure," she said.
"Is that why you came here?" he asked.

She nodded.

"This man contacted me a few days ago, telling me that there was a group of surviving Eagles who want to stand against Baneford...there's no way that I wouldn't pass up a chance at revenge against that son of a bitch," she said.

She then looked at Fabiana.

"We both lost our parents in the invasion and out of everyone else here, you and I have the best reason to hate him...and the most intense desire to destroy him," she growled.

Fabiana nodded in response.

"So what do we do to find Iris?" asked Carl.
"I believe the last location in which there was a sighting of her was in Los Angeles so that would be a good place to begin your search,"
"So we're supposed to go back to city that's full of Vultures? Did you forget that they occupied that city after the invasion and it's probably one of the largest concentrations of Vultures in North America?" snapped Nate.

The man cleared his throat once again.

"I will be meeting all of you there...go to the address I will be sending to Alex's phone in two days and ensure that you are not followed; I have a plan to find her,"

The screen went black once more.

"It's still going to be a while until we arrive so sit tight you two,"
"Thank you Bernard,"

I looked back to my book until Kit's moving figure broke my gaze. He was still deep in meditation and after looking at the watch, he was in that state for almost an hour and a half. He was so focused and absorbed in his meditation that even the turbulence we experienced a few minutes ago didn't seem to even get him to flinch.

"Kit?" I asked.

He opened his eyes, showing that they were green from levitating himself with telekinesis.

"Something on your mind?" he asked.
"Yes actually," I replied

I closed my book and cleared my throat.

"So you don't remember seeing me at all in your childhood?" I asked.
"No recollection...and I'm sure I'd have remembered someone like you," he replied.
"What do you me?"

He looked out the window and stood up.

"When I was on the compound, I watched you fence for a little while and I saw deep's not something I'm used to seeing because most people I've met are almost robotic in nature considering the world is dominated by Hawks now," he said.

He raised his hand and carried a bottle of water from the fridge above me right into his palm without even looking back.

"Seeing a Hawk exhibit passion is something I've never seen're a special person Amelia," he said.

I was thankful that I was wearing a jacket with a hood over my head else he would've probably seen the, he would've probably been able to detect the heat in my cheeks considering that his senses were so much sharper than mine.

"T-T-Thank you," I replied.

I could only hope that I sounded calm when I said those words.
"What was life like?" he asked.

I shook my head, not understanding the question.

"You're a member of the Rosario family which is considered nobility in France; I was curious as to what your lifestyle was like," he replied.

I smiled at him.

"It's definitely not a life that I liked much...I was always an independent thinker and I always wanted to move out and pursue my own dreams," I replied.
"So you were very sheltered?" he asked.

I laughed nervously.

"That' understatement,"

He sat down in the chair in front of me and looked at me with interest.

"Why are you looking at me like that?" I asked.
"...It's as if I'm caught in a battle within myself; half of me wants to trust you but the other just doesn't ever want to trust a Hawk ever again...not after what happened all those years ago," he replied.

His eyes narrowed.

"Do you want to talk about it?' I asked.

He tried to answer but I cut him off.

"I'm not saying it out of pity; I want to know what happened...because I think my mother sugar coated it far too much for my liking,"

He let out the breath he took and turned away.

"What did she tell you?"
"That all of you were wiped out,"

He shook his head once more and turned to see that Angela was sleeping in the aisle in front of us. After taking a deep breath and nodding once more, he looked at me.

"That's...only scratching the surface,"
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