Chapter 1: When Heaven and Hell Align
It all began with evolution, the natural process in which living things change and adapt to their environment. The human race however, seemed to grow arrogant and complacent with their comfortable and ignorant lifestyle. They had no idea of the impatience of Nature, and her willingness to act through her own creations. Some humans began to see and understand how stagnant humanity had become and sought change. They would enact this change by whatever means they could, and inevitably they changed the world because of it. It’s funny, to think that Nature had sought the aid of Science to push humanity further. Though this union was one that would bring about an endless rain of blood and a gathering of ashen clouds. The coming storm would be one that would be remembered for a very long time.
To think I had lived my life oblivious up to that point. I could never see the blood pouring through the streets of the place I called home. To me there was no crimson raining from the sky. I could not witness the prices paid by Science and Nature. It seemed that my ignorance was the most sinful of all, as it did not go unpunished.
This is not a happy story, it’s the story of my ignorant self. It is the story of how Science and Nature conspired against me; a young child at the time. This is the story of how I died.
I lived in Evo City, an island located deep within the heart of the Atlantic Ocean. It laid silent in the water, far enough from the equator to grant it all four seasons, as Nature intended. It was the one way she had domain in this city, as it was entirely constructed by men employed by Science. Within this island, men worked to establish their will over those beneath. By the will of Nature and Science they experimented on humanity and forced them to evolve.
The island itself was rather large and even had its own government, making it free from any cancerous political ties to the rest of the modern world. Many of its denizens flocked to the island sheerly because they saw it as an opportunity to escape the troubles of the world and live comfortably. The city had a Residential District full of affordable housing, an Entertainment District for every kind of pleasure from the innocent to the depraved, and an abandoned Slum, and everything was connected through Center City, which was a sort of hub. Center City was where many went to fulfill their routines or do a bit of shopping to help spur the island’s economy. All of this just to help fund experimentation. It was quite the con when you think about it. So many sheep filed into this place and willingly let themselves be blinded by its shining allure. Nature and Science seemed to be irresistible. After all, mankind was born of Nature’s womb and fell in love with Science.
Rain fell onto the luminous city, covering the ground with a shimmering coat of water. My clothes felt damp and heavy as the water came crashing down on the world below. I could see my reflection in the deep puddles within the road. A pale face looked back at me with bicolored eyes. My left eye was completely black like the void of the puddle below. My right eye had a white irs surrounding an untouched black pupil. Messy jet black hair stemmed down from my scalp into sharp bangs that occasionally fell in my eyes. My body was lithe as ever and wrapped in a white t-shirt with a blue checkerboard hoodie overtop. Covering my legs were simple black pants and shoes of the same color.
I stared at my reflection in the water for some time, until the sound of sirens approached the alleyway. Red and blue lights poured into the roads behind and in front of me as a voice that was not my own rang throughout my mind.
“Hostile contacts moving in at twelve and six.” spoke the voice in monotone.
I saw police cruisers pull up to the alleyway entrance. The Evo City Police Service emblem displayed proudly along the doors. I sighed to myself and began to focus all my thoughts into channeling energy. I felt my hand begin to tingle as what would look like dark matter began to manifest into a blade held tightly in my grasp. The blade was blacker than the rainy night sky and looked as endless as a void. Its very presence seemed to erase the space it occupied. With a swift motion I tore open a gash in the space ahead of me, and I escaped into the black matter. The police officers would storm the alleyway in search of their suspect, but all they would find would be an empty street. I had long since vanished into negative space and had slipped away from their sight, but they were still in mine. I watched as they searched aimlessly for their target. I could see the police officers speaking to each other, but no sound could enter my ears.
“What are they saying.” I spoke in thought to the foreign voice within.
“They are looking for you. We can take them out here, or we can let them be for the time being.”
I sat lying in wait as the officers continued to search the area. With little effort I could dispatch them, but it would mean that the ECPD would be looking for me more than any other criminal in the city. It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve taken a life. I was taught to understand that no one could know of my existence. However, at the same time I knew I could leave those police officers chasing their tails. But that would mean they would find me eventually. I was considering leaving the officers alive, until the voice swayed my decision.
“You’re gonna have to decide quickly. She knows where you are.” said the voice with a great sense of urgency.
I immediately broke free from the negative matter that surrounded me and emerged in reality cleaving into a police officer with my dark matter blade. The officer fell to the ground with a large gaping wound stretching from his left shoulder and tearing through his body. I swiftly summoned another blade to my free hand as the officers immediately opened fire. A sword of glowing white matter shimmered with light that poured off like smoke. I swiftly blocked the bullets with my light blade as they hurtled towards me. Within seconds a stepped back into negative space as gunfire rang out into the rainy sky. It would only be a matter of time before she arrived.
The inferno had found me. Yet I remained hidden in the void as she reaped the very souls of her foes with flames. I could see her with my waking eyes. Crimson hair that flowed behind with the same chaos as the flames she wielded. Her eyes were blue like ice, with reflections of embers dancing across her gaze. Her slender, pale figure was wrapped in a tight corset of black leather that clung to her curves and pushed up her bust only slightly. A red on black plaid skirt covered her waist as a pair of fishnet stockings climbed up her legs from beneath her boots. The boots she wore on her feet were tall and brought forth a powerful presence from within the glamour. The boots were black, of course, with belts and buckles wrapping around their length almost haphazardly. A pleasure filled grin stretched to the edges of her dangerously beautiful face as she burned her foes to ash. It was only when that last survivor begged for his life to no avail that I emerged to face her. The woman wreathed in hellfire. The woman who brought this fate upon me. The woman who killed my father. The woman who killed me.
I glared at my foe as she stood holding the body of a dead cop as it crumbled into dust that fell to the pavement as rain drops collided with it.
“You’re a tough one to find.” she spoke with an almost flirty tone.
“Maybe I never wanted to be found.” I responded before silence overtook us.
We stared into each other’s eyes with murderous intent. The air around me began to heat up ever so slightly before finally combusting into a storm of flames. I leapt above the fire and found myself fall closer to my target. I brought my light blade down upon her only to be blocked by an arm wrapped in flames. I swung my dark blade as she blocked its twin only to be blocked once more. However, the strike of my dark blade grazed her hand, erasing the flames that encased it. That was when I struck. I slashed her arm with my light blade and kicked her back. She flew backward and skidded along the wet pavement as I slowly approached. She grinned to herself as she licked the blood from her wound.
“You’ve gotten stronger. I like it.”
She outstretched her unscathed hand and unleashed a barrage of fireballs that careened towards me. I reacted swiftly and recalled my dark blade. Dark matter gathered in my hand and pulsated as I guided my hand over the area in front of me and created a barrier that erased every ball of fire that came into contact with it.
“You have no idea.”
I brought my dark blade back to my hand and charged towards her with fury in my steps. She quickly stood up and began to channel flames through her hands. Steam began to rise from the street as the puddles around her began to boil. The voice in my mind shouted at me with utmost urgency.
“Stop! You can’t survive her next attack!”
It was too late. She let out a blood curtling scream of rage and sent a massive blast of fire towards me. Without even thinking I sliced my way into negative space once more and hid away from the flames. I sighed with relief and then stared at her as she looked for me with rage in her eyes.
“You are still much stronger than me.” I said under my breath.
I spoke the truth. She was much stronger than me. She was always stronger than me. She was strong since the day I first encountered her. The day she ended my life in the blink of an eye. The day that the person I once was died.
People long ago used to believe in Abraxas, the god who saved humanity from a fake world. A german writer talked about the world being like an egg. For a bird to be born it must destroy the egg, the world. The day I died, I emerged from the egg and destroyed the world I called home. I have flown to Abraxas. I have seen the true world and destroyed the egg. The egg, the falsworld. The world that trapped me within its perpetual fantasy The life I lived was no more than a dream that I awoke from a long time ago. It was the egg that I had long since left behind shattered. And yet it is a dream I wish I could go back to despite its sorry state. For the pleasures of my new existence are few and far between. Abraxas has saved me, yet I continue to resent the god’s help.
My mother passed away when I was very young. It is something I remember blaming myself for. My father always told me my mother was beautiful, and that it was not my fault that she died. I can remember the first and last time I saw her. She truly was beautiful. She was a goddess in her own right. My father on the other hand reminded me of a knight from a fantasy world. He was a strong a brave man who would protect me with his life if it came to it. He probably never anticipated that his promise would seek fulfillment.
I remember it as clear as day. The day my world shattered like glass. My father had brought me to the street mall that had just opened up in the Entertainment District. The sky was brightly lit that day, and everything seemed perfect, as they often do before tragedy strikes. It was the subtle calm before the storm. It happened in a flash. An explosion ripped its way through the east side of the market. Panic flooded into the streets, carried by smoke and fire. As the dust finally settled, I saw her. The girl who would kill me. Her scarlet hair practically glowed with flame. I looked on in shock as she picked up people one by one and dug her scolding hands into their flesh and watched in bliss as their flesh and bone atomized in her clutches. I could hear every single scream of every single person slowly vaporized by that girl’s power. I remember turning back to my father and shouting at him to do something. He was frozen in place. I did my best try and get him to snap out of his daze. I kept shaking his arm and tugging on his collar. I had no idea how futile my actions were. Every attempt to try and drag my father from his daze would have no effect. My mind was just forcing me further into denial. It was only when I began to give up that the illusion had broken and I saw the truth. My father has been burned by the girl’s flames. His face had been burned and torn through to the bone. He was completely unrecognizable, his skull was almost completely exposed and was slowly crumbling into dust. I just stood there in absolute disbelief as I saw the face of my father being mutilated by that girl’s flames. I watched as my father’s body slowly crumbled. I was too scared to even shed a tear as I clung to his hands before his body faded away on the wind. I remember screaming. Not in panic but in fury and sorrow. I felt a feeling swelling up inside me that I had never known. My father was nothing more than a memory now. The good life I had was gone. I was alone.
My breath felt hot as I glared at the woman as she strolled gleefully through her killing fields. In that moment of suffering, I did the unthinkable. I felt an unfathomable rage behind me as I charged forward towards the woman. I surged forth letting loose a terrifying battle cry. I stormed forth and did not stop when I saw that fearsome grin of hers. She hurled a single ball of flame towards me and I felt my bodily instincts take control, adjusting my course to dodge the incoming blast. The woman didn’t looked to surprised and began to fire off a few more blasts. I swiftly took cover behind some rock and began to breath heavy. Scorched bodies lay at my feet, still breathing and looking at me with eyes begging for a breath of life. My mind was racing with fear. Soon, my fate wouldn’t be much different from the ashen corpse strewn around me. I could hear the woman speaking firmly as she walked ever closer to my cover.
“Come out and fight me kid! It’s your own life you’re wasting here! Might as well go out a hero, right?”
I clenched my fists tight as I prepared myself to emerge from my cover and tackle the woman.
“Good luck saving what’s left, kid.” spoke the woman in a menacing tone.
I felt my heart sink from her words and my body heat up. I was enraged. She was taunting me. She had no value for life. Her view of humanity was skewed and malformed. She believed everyone below her to be weaklings, and she was the top of the food chain. Those who could not stand up to her or could surpass her had no right to live. Her power was immense, there was no way I could stand up to her for long. Despite my fear I still felt my body vault over my small piece of cover and charge towards the woman.
“That’s it. Come to me.” She muttered to herself as I watched her body begin to glow with an immense white light and the air around me began to burn.
All I can remember is a flash of light and something heavy hitting me in the back. I remember blinking in and out of consciousness and feeling my entire body hurting. Everything hurt. I couldn’t feel anything. I just stared ahead at that woman in absolute, crushing fear. But then, something else wormed its way out of the blackest pits of my pain. Acceptance. I felt a gentle warmth overcome me as I tried to sit up against the stone that I had been flung into. I smiled. I smiled with whatever energy I had left as the woman came ever so closer. I had accepted death. The thought of going on to be with my father didn’t seem so bad. I couldn’t even feel pain anymore. I was ready to leave. The woman approached me and crouched down in front of me with a menacing smile on her face. She dragged her hand gently across my brunt head as she spoke softly.
“I give you some credit, you lasted much longer than most. Tell you what, I’m a nice girl. I’ll give you a little reward.”
I stared at the woman with wounded eyes as she stood up and continued to stare at me. Then, out of nowhere, I felt a sharp kick to my stomach. I screamed out in pain as I slumped over from the blow. The woman grinned as she raised her leg to kick me once more.
“Your reward is a long and painful death. A death fitting for someone who can take the pain.”
The woman dropped her foot into the back of my skull, knocking me to the scolding hot ground. I felt the heel of her boot press me into the hot stone ground. I screamed out in unbearable pain as I felt the skin of my face sizzle and burn. The smell of my own burning flesh invaded my nostrils. My mind was stuck on a loop. The same for words kept repeating in my head.
“I’m going to die. I’m going to die. I’m going to die.”
The woman continued to grin as she licked her lips before picking my head up by the chin and staring into my bloodshot eyes. I felt her fist pound right into my cheek over and over and over again. An inescapable rain of blows fell upon me. I felt like any second my jaw would break off from its joints. Finally she threw me to the ground and I let out a raspy scream as pain shot all throughout my back. The woman, still grinning with malice, began to stomp onto my weakened chest repeatedly. My hands stretched towards the clear blue sky as it cast its warm light down onto the decimated ground. I had stopped screaming as I felt my ribs slowly crunch and collapse from the force of the woman’s boot. Blood began to flow from my mouth onto my burnt flesh while the woman continued to stomp into my long since collapsed chest. Finally she placed her foot on my shoulder and grabbed my hand. She pulled my arm with all her might and I felt every snap and tear as she broke my arm and then the other. I couldn’t even scream anymore. All I could do was stare at the sky above in unbearable pain. Next she would break my legs. My whole body was falling apart before this girl’s might. I couldn’t even crawl away anymore. I was stuck, flat on my back, flesh burnt and bloody, and all of my limbs broken. The woman smiled menacingly at her work and glared at me with familiar ferocity.
“I think you’re ready to die now. The flames will slowly tear you down into nothing. I hope you’ve made peace with whatever god you pray to.”
I saw the woman gather flames into her palm. That ball of flame would be the thing to kill me. I gave the woman a nod as if to say “do it.” She smiled and hurled that ball of fire towards me. I could see it heading towards my eyes in slow motion. Seconds seemed like minutes, minutes like hours. Every moment in my life came flooding into my brain. This was it. There was nowhere to go but forward. Forward into the flames. I closed my eyes softly and smiled as I welcomed the end. I would die with a smile.
I remember hearing a strange sound as I embraced the end. My eyes had opened to see what had occurred. That was when I first laid eyes upon him. Someone had come to save me. But he was no knight in shining armor. This knight’s armor was a coat that was blacker than an abyss. He was beautiful. His hair was jet black like mine, but he wore square shaped glasses. He looked to be maybe a few years older than me. His body was thin yet had the strength of a legend. All of his clothes were completely black like the void, the most noticeable article being his long coat that waved in the wind. Its blood red interior brought out a fierce contrast to the abyssal black. His black gloves had white lines running overtop his knuckles. Clutched firmly in his right hand was his Excalibur. A large broadsword. A simple weapon for such a brave, yet strange man. I could barely hear what he said to the woman but one thing stood out.
“You really have lost yourself, haven’t you? Nina.”
Nina. That was her name. The name of the woman who killed my father. The woman who killed me. I was alone because of her. I watched as the strange man stared down Nina. Nina merely grinned as she channeled flames through her palms.
“And you haven’t changed one bit, Genesis!”
I watched as a flurry of flames blew towards me and this strange man named Genesis, only to be cut down into nothing but embers by a simple steel blade. I would have been amazed had I not been waning in and out of consciousness. Everything was just a blur. I remember watching the man named Genesis fighting that girl, Nina. I remember feeling hands pick me up and lay me down onto what I believed to be a stretcher of some sort. Then there was nothing, just the blackness. I was surrounded by shadow.
Everything blurred together after I was taken from the street mall in the arms of a stranger. I remember seeing the man named Genesis talking to a man with long blond hair. The blond man said something strange. I was so broken and beaten, just trying to focus on hearing was an ordeal. I remember only on sentence said by the blond man.
“The boy is important, we have no choice but to proceed ahead of schedule.”
“But is he even ready to accept his fate.” responded Genesis with concern.
I blacked out again after that. My eyes wouldn’t open again until I was brought into a laboratory. The lab was completely white like the heavens. Light seemed to flood into the room from the corners and edges. I watched as the blond haired man looked at me with sorrow consuming his eyes. I could barely hear anything, but I could read the words coming from his lips.
“I’m so sorry.” the blond man muttered as he prepared a syringe.
He held up the small syringe before injecting straight into my neck with gentle precision. The second I felt the syringe pierce my skin my eyes widened. I felt like something was invading my body. There were black and white flashes in my vision and body jerked with each flash. Something was happening to me. What was happening to me? I blacked out again from the sheer shock of what was occurring.
I came back to consciousness once more. this time it was to the sound of an electric razor. I could feel my leftover hair being shaved by the blond man. I remember clenching my fist in pain as the scientist continued to shave me bald, and then he laid me on my back and put me under anesthetic. Despite the anesthesia, I still could feel a slight, yet very sharp pain in my skull. It felt like someone has precisely carved their way into my brain and inserted something. Something was inside my brain. My mind began to go into a panic. Something was in my mind. Something in my brain. Boring a hole in my brain. Something. Brain. Something. Boring. Brain. Boring. Hole in Brain. Boring. My thoughts became a jumbled, incoherent mess. My breath grew heavy, my heartbeat quickened.
“Just what the hell were they doing to me!?” is what I thought as my brain was invaded by something unknown.
Then it happened. This bizarre rush of colors flashing into my mind. My whole brain felt like it was about to split in two. There was a sharp pain in the back of my head. Something boring into my brain. Colors flashed in front of my mind’s eye. There was a ringing in my ear and it kept getting louder. I felt this surge of information flood over me. More colors flashed. The pain grew worse. The ringing was all I could hear. The sound kept me from being able to think, my brain was falling apart. My brain, the skull being drilled through. The blood. I was going crazy! This torture went on for only ten minutes, yet it felt like ten thousand years of insanity that had flushed out my brain. Everything that was once me was being overwritten like computer data. When I at last woke up from the nightmare, I heard a voice. I heard a voice inside my head.
“Where am I?”