A Short Story

It had been a few weeks since they had escaped the field. After what felt like an eternity of trudging through the ruins of the city that was identified as Philadelphia, they were finally found by a group of ragtag people who called themselves Saviors. Their “boss” was a girl hardly older than Kate, her name was Katlyn. She was tall, nearly six feet. Her hair was short and curly, and she appeared to be of Latino heritage. Her clothing, much like those of the other Saviors, were ripped and looked like they were 1,000 years old.

The group took them to a camp, that was hidden away inside a tunnel that used to be used by subways. What the small group saw amazed them. Plants were growing out of the stone terminal, and not useless weeds, but grass and food, like eggplants, tomatoes, green beans, carrots, cherry bushes, a large verity of spices, and even a few fruits that grew on trees.

“What is this place?” Kate asked, looking around in wonder.

“Angel Haven,” Katlyn stated, turning her head to face them as they continued walking. “Yo Race, we find some more survivors!”

A young blonde headed man waltzed over. “Where’d you escape from?” He asked, looking each of them over.

“The Philadelphia Airport,” Mr. Jakes responded, glaring at the young man.

“How’d you escape?” He questioned, returning the glare.

“With a mirror,” Kate answered, pulling out the piece she had used to escape.

“Same story every time,” he mumbled.

“You mean there are others?” Darby exclaimed.

“Yeah! What, you think you were the only ones smart enough to think of using a mirror?” He laughed.

“Hey, you could try being nicer. Nice to meet you all, my name is Maria, I’ll be showing you to your rooms,” a nice middle aged women greeted, after scolding Race for his rude remark.

The small group followed Maria to their room. The room was large with many beds. “Um, how are we supposed to…you know, undress,” Tracy asked, looking accusingly at the boys.

“Just pull this walls,” Maria explained, giving a demonstration.

“Thank you ma’ma,” Mr. Jacks thanked. Maria nodded, smiled, and walked out of the room. “Well, I think we could all use some rest.”

Everyone plopped down onto the surprisingly soft beds. Before Kate fell asleep she thought about her family and hoped they were safe.

The next morning was very busy. She was awoken by a bell. After dressing herself, she followed the ocean of people to what seemed like a school cafeteria, where everyone was being giving some food.

“Eggs, toast, bacon, sausages?” A young boy asked rather excitedly.

“Benny, you’re holding up the line,” his mother whispered.

“Sorry!” The boy laughed, taking his food following his mother to a table.

After getting some food, Kate and her group sat down at a table close to the line. “So how is everyone this morning?” Mr. Jacks asked, taking a mouth full of food.

Everyone simply nodded, enjoying the first real meal they had in a long time. “Hello ladies…” A teen boy greeted, taking a sat, along with some of his friends.

“Oh look, it’s the bad boys,” Tracy mocked.

“Hey, don’t judge a book by its cover,” he retorted.

“Yeah, unless you’re the book,” a familiar voice shot from behind.

“Oh great! It’s Race, the pooper of parties,” he groaned turning to face Race.

“Get lost, Roy, before I get Katlyn.”

“You know, Katlyn isn’t going to be able to protect you forever,” Roy stated in a rather threatening way, before he and his group walked away, sitting at an empty table.

“I could’ve handled them myself,” Tracy declared.

“I’m sure you could,” he replied with a smile.

“So,” Mr. Jacks began, cutting right to the chase. “Where did you escape from?”

“Me? Oh, no, I never escaped, I was never inside a force field,” Race shrugged, taking a mouth full of food.

“So what, you, like, lived in the middle of nowhere?” Darby asked in a disbelieving tone.

“Uh-yeah-I lived on a Philadelphia farm, what did you think, that I was a rich snub just ‘cause I have blond hair?” Their faces answered his question. He laughed before speaking again, “Wow…you really have a lot to learn, man!”

“Do you know who or what put up the force fields?!” Kate inquired.

“Ahh,” Race hesitated, he seemed rather nervous.

“Race! Get off your lazy butt, we’ve got work to do!”

“Sorry, gotta go!” He got up and ran towards the man who called him.

“Why didn’t he want to answer your question?” Darby thought aloud, once Race was out of sight. “Perhaps he knows-” she gasped, “Maybe he did it, maybe he works for the people who did this-or even the…aliens!”

Tracy groaned, annoyed, “That’s the stupidest thing I’d ever heard, Darby!”

“Stop it, both of you!” Mr. Jacks ordered. His bulldog, Peter, barked once.

Still, Darby had a point. Why did Race hesitate to answer her question? What was he hiding? Kate suddenly remembered what her dad always said, “When you want answers don’t just wait around, go get ‘em!” So, that was what Kate was going to do. She got up.

“Where are you going, Kate?”

“I wanna look around, don’t worry Mr. Jacks, I’ll stay inside.”

Mr. Jacks nodded, and Kate walked away.

She soon found Katlyn in a hallway, she was playing with some small children. One of the children whispered something in her ear pointing at Kate, who smiled and waved at the group.

“Hi,” Katlyn smiled. She turned to the children. “You keep playing, I have to go.”

“Are those your kids?” Kate inquired.

Katlyn laughed, “No, no, I don’t have any children.”

“A boyfriend…Race, maybe?”

Katlyn looked at her with an unreadable expression, “Maybe.” She stopped walking and looked Kate right in the eyes. “What do you want Kate?”

Kate stood. Completely shocked and terrified, “I, I, I, uh, I-I wanted to know if you knew who, or what put up the force field…”

Katlyn sighed. “I do know…”

Just before Katlyn could continue-just like in the movies she and her father would watch-something interrupted her.

An alarm began to scream, filling the hallways with sound and light. Kate covered her ears afraid she might lose her hearing if she didn’t. Katlyn quickly grabbed her arm and began to run down the hallways, finally arriving back at the cafeteria where children were crying, and pretty much everyone else was panicking and or yelling.

Kate made her way towards her group, bashing into people who were running this way and that, like birds flying when they are startled. “Kate! You’re here! What’s going on?!” Darby yelled over the noise.

“I donno, Katlyn and I-” she stopped and began to look around.

“What? What is it?!” Darby asked, frantically.

“Where’s Katlyn?”

“Who cares?!” Tracy yelled. “What about us?”

“No! You don’t understand!”

“What doesn’t I understand, Kate?”

“Katlyn! She knows who put up the force fields! She knows!!”

“Everyone! Return to your room! Everything will be ok, just please, got to your rooms and lock the doors, do not-I repeat-do not open them! Thank you…”

Amid all the noises and dashing people Kate saw a distinctive head of blond hair. Race! She declared to herself. She sprinted after him, not bothering to tell anyone.

She followed Race at a safe distance through the thinning crowd. She tailed him down every stair chase, hallway, and turn he took, until finally he stopped in front of a metallic door and said something…alien?

“Kará, resa, earth…”

Earth?! Planet earth?! Kate’s mind raced. Alien! Race was an alien! That’s why he didn’t answer her question regarding the force fields earlier, his people are the ones doing it! She walked up to the door, she paused, remembering the words Race had used, repeating them slowly, and carefully. She waited for the door to open, or to get caught.

Success! The door opened!

“Kate? What are you doing here?” Race asked, clearly surprised.

“I know who you are!” She exclaimed.

“What are you talking about?”

“I know you’re an alien! I know you and your people are trapping everyone in those force fields!”

“Hey! Stop jumping to conclusions, we aren’t the bad guys, they are!” Roy shouted, pointing at an old monitor screen. The screen showed a small group of armed men, fully equipped with body armor, ammo, grenades, and other equipment Kate couldn’t identify. Other screens showed more of the same.

“Are they here?” Race asked.

“Not yet, but this is the closest they’ve ever gotten,” another 20-year-old male replied.

“We have a problem.”

“What is it Tris?”

“They don’t look like they’re searching, it looks like they are moving in…”

“That’s not possible, there’s no way they found is, not without Katlyn knowing,” Race answered, clearly troubled.

“Yeah? Well, Tris is never wrong, so your girlfriend’s skills might need some tuning, blondie,” Roy shot.

“What skills?” Kate asked. Everyone in the room looked at one another. “What skills?!” Kate asked, more firmly this time.

“The skills that have been keeping us alive,” Tom-the 20-year-old man, stated.

“They found us!” Katlyn’s voice gasped through a monitor.

“Wanna tell us how?” Roy growled.

“I-I don’t know,” she whispered.

“I say we get our weapons and defend this place!” Roy declared. “It’s our home!”

“We can’t!” Katlyn stated.

“Yes we can!” Roy replied. “They are forcing our hand; we need to strike back now while we have the chance!”

“Roy’s right, Lyn, it’s time,” Race sided.

Katlyn sighed. “If we do this, there’s no turning back.”

“What do you mean, no turning back?” Kate asked. She was suddenly angry none of her questions were being answered. “Answer my question; What the heck is going on?!!”

“You were right, I’m am an alien! So is everyone else in this room, and Katlyn, but we didn’t put up the force fields, and I cannot tell you who did right know because you wouldn’t understand, but those guys out there are part of it, and are going to kill everyone in this building if we give them the chance!”

“Attention! We are under attack! I repeat we are under attack!” Roy announced. “Fighters report to Race! Anyone who has had fighting experience is welcomed to join the fight to protect our home, we understand if you cannot, but it would be greatly appreciated! Once again, we are under attack! We are under attack!”

“Come on,” Race grabbed Kate’s hand. “I’m going to take you to your room.” With that he literally sped off. When he stopped, they were in front of her door.

“Whoa!” She gasped. “You-you’re f-fast!”

“Kate! Where have you been?! What happened to your hair?” Mr. Jacks questioned.

“I’m fine, but I’m going to help protect this place,” she explained.

“What?!” Both Race and Mr. Jacks exclaimed. “No you’re not!”

“You said it yourselves, you need all the help you can get.”

“Yeah, help, no offence, but you have no experience.”

“Not to mention it much too dangerous!” Mr. Jacks put in.

“But I want to help!”

Darby and Tracy, we have been listening to this conversation finally(T) spoke up, “We could help in the medical bay.” The three turned to face them. “We tend to our own injuries all the time, we’re lacrosse players!” Peter backed in agreement. Kate smiled, beggingly.

“Fine! I’ll tell Maria you’re on your way,” Race finally agreed, before speeding off.

Everyone looked shocked. “I’ll explain on the way, c’mon!” Kate urged, running.

It took them a good 15 minutes to get to the medical bay.

“We can watch from here,” Maria finished explaining what they had to do.

“Have you ever been in a battle before?” Mr. Jacks asked.

“Yes…before Katlyn’s powers were…fully developed,” Maria hesitated.

“Fully developed?” Darby echoed.

“Yes, see, Nachroo usually have more than one gift, and they usually take time to develop, but Lyn and Race took longer than any I’ve ever seen, and Race only has one gift,” Maria went on.

“But why?”

Maria shrugged. Their attention was suddenly turned when the T.V. like system began to make noise.

“Alright…I’m moving in…” Race’s voice whispered.

“Careful, sweetie,” Maria mumbled, placing her hand to her heart. A streak passed across the battle field, taking the weapons of each man it passed.

“Leave now, and no lives will be lost!” Katlyn yelled.

“Hahaha! We have you outgunned and outnumbered, alien, we ain’t going anywhere!” Their leader called back.

“And neither are we!” Katlyn responded.

“You alien scum don’t scare me! You either turned yourself and the deserters in…or you all die!”

“Or you can leave, and let us live in peace, as we have left you!”

“Peace! You are hording infected humans, you’re aliens on our planet, what is peaceful about that!”

“And you’re trapping them in force fields, then warping them to be tested on without consent! How is that peaceful?!”

“It’s for the greater good, this virus has killed thousands and counting, we need a cure now!”

They all gasped, as the sound of a shot rung through the air, rendering everything silent. But this silence was the calm before the storm. All the troops began to fire. The small group watched in terror. Everything was hard to see and all the noise made it hard to understand what was being said, it was like this for at least an hour. The battle was scary from a malfunctioning viewing system; Kate couldn’t image what it was like to be in the actual battle.

“Hey…Roy…you-go!”

“Oh-baby!”

Suddenly a big Donkey Kong like monster roared and ran at the enemy, their shots not bothering it at all.

“What is that…?!” Tracy gasped.

“Roy,” Maria answered. “He can shape shift.”

“Not bad,” Mr. Jacks mumbled.

With the help of the Hulk, the fight was soon over without much injury.

The sun was reaching its highest peak, marking the middle of this crazy day. “We need to leave,” Katlyn said.

“Why?” Darby asked.

“Because they know we’re here, we aren’t safe!” She growled. “Those monsters, and we were so close to figuring out how to stop them!”

“Lyn we’ll move, we’ll be fine, we’ll figure this out,” Race soothed, placing his hands on her shoulders.

“How do we know you’re not really the bad guys?” Tracy shot.

“You don’t know anything!” Katlyn yelled angrily. “We saved you, we didn’t have to, heck, we could have just left this planet and let you all die! But we didn’t, those force fields were placed by your own government to cage you in, to use you as rats in their lab experiments to find a cure for the virus they themselves created!” She looked each of them in the eye. “You need to pick a side!”

“What?!” Tracy barked.

“You heard me!” Katlyn stated. “You all need to pick a side, right here, right now, you can leave and go your own way, or you can come with us and fight!”

The whole group looked at each other.

“I with you.”

“What!? Kate! No, this is a big decision, you can’t make it so hastily!” Mr. Jacks protested.

“Really, is it really that hard?” She asked, turning to face him. “They know the truth, that’s enough for me.”

Mr. Jacks sighed. His dog barked and trudged over towards Kate. Soon Darby joined them. Tracy and Mr. Jacks stood there, undecided.

Kate was scared and worried. She didn’t want to leave her coach, but she wanted-needed-the truth, and this was the only way to get it.

“Do you have a plan?” Mr. Jacks inquired. “Do you have another place? Will we be safe?”

“We have a place in…Maryland,” Race replied.

“That also happens to be where the government’s H.Q. is located,” Roy added.

“Alright, I’ll go with you,” Mr. Jacks finally agreed.

He and Tracy walked over.

“Alright, Race, Maria, go get the transport ready. Roy get on that mic,” Katlyn ordered.

“That, I can do,” Roy snickered.

“What about us?” Kate asked, eagerly.

“We’re going to get everyone onto the-”

“Transports are ready!” Race’s voice sang through a radio.

“I hate it when he does that!” She grumbled.

“Attention, attention, we are evacuating, I repeat we’re leaving Angle Haven, please report to the transport sector and do as told. There is no need to panic, everything will be fine…”

“That’s what we’re going to be doing, helping these people keep calm and get on a transport,” Katlyn instructed. “C’mon!”

The arrived at the transport sector minutes later. The sense was a mess. Once again there was a sea of people, whispering, wondering what was going on.

“Everything is alright, we just need to leave for things to stay that way, now please, do as told so this can go smoothly and quickly…thank you!”

“Come on everyone, this way,” Kate called, directing the men, women, and children. She overheard Katlyn and Race talking behind the transport she was in charge off.

“See Lyn, everything’s fine,” Race stated.

“It’s just like back on Nachroo! I wasn’t strong enough, how did I not know they found us…how did they find us?!”

“Lyn, what happened to us on Nachroo wasn’t your fault, c’mon, focus on now, not then!”

“Cute. Using my words against me,” Katlyn chuckled.

“Eh, they were inspiring.”

Kate knew what they were talking about, Maria told them. Their own people were trying to kill them, and when the public found out they were given a free trail, but still banished from their planet. They were banished because they saw Katlyn as too powerful, and her friends stood by her, sharing her fate.

Kate didn’t understand. What was so powerful about Katlyn, for a long as they have been together, which admittedly hasn’t been long, she had never seen Katlyn use any type of power.

Wait! She thought to herself. Angle Haven! Katlyn made Angle Haven, and earlier, Race said Katlyn would ‘know if they had found us.’

“What’s your power, Katlyn?” She wondered aloud.

“What?” A little child asked, confused and somewhat startled.

Kate blushed, purely embarrassed, “Nothing. Keep, keep moving.”

“I’m betting that question was for me,” Katlyn laughed from behind.

“Yeah, yeah…it was,” she answered sheepishly.

“I don’t know, it doesn’t have a name, but I can feel the life force in ours and control it in plants.”

“Wow!”

“Hey!” Roy called. “Let’s go! Everyone one’s on board!”

The two teens jumped onto the ascending transport and sat in the worn-out leather seats. With a jerk the transports began to move. The sun beat down on them. Kate looked over the side at the sandy terrane they were hovering over.

There were going to Maryland, she was getting closer to her family, she could feel it! “I’m coming,” she whispered.

The city of Philadelphia was hardly recognizable, it was falling apart, mainly because its residents were…dead. Then it hit her; what if her family was dead? No! They’re alive! They must be!

There was a floosh, and there stood Race, holding out a blanket. “You’re gonna need this, we won’t get there until morning, it gets cold at night.”

“Thanks,” Kate smiled, taking the blanket. It was a nice woolen blanket; it did a good job of keeping her warm. Once she had taken the blanket, Race ran over to where Katlyn was sitting a took a seat beside her, placing his arm on her shoulders.

Yeah. Kate laughed to herself. They’re a thing. She sighed as she began to relax, feeling the cool wind against her face, blowing her hair long straight out behind her. A small smile crossed her face as she drifted to sleep.

She was awoken by a loud boom. “What’s going on!?” She gasped.

“The engine exploded!” Race yelled.

“Of course it did!” Katlyn groaned. “Rex, Tina, we need a lift and a fix!”

“We need someone to get us there.”

“On it!” Race jumped, running off.

He came back with two children.

“Lyn, can you lift it for me?” Rex, a six-year-old, asked.

Katlyn nodded. She closed her eyes and moved her hand towards the transport, vines sprung out of the sandy ground and lifted the transport. Rex then went under the transport and the vines disappeared.

“Super strength!” Kate laughed.

The child named Tina’s eyes glowed white as parts began to move away from the engine and back again.

Kate couldn’t believe that little children had such abilities, it was truly amazing.

As time went by, she began to feel the transport tremble, as if it was going to fall.

“No rush Tina, but my arms are getting tired here!” Rex whimpered.

“Sorry, almost done!” She moved a few more parts. “Try it!”

“C’mon, c’mon, c’mon!” Roy hissed as he stepped on the gas. “Yes! HAHA! Karesia!”

Rex, Tina and Katlyn returned onto transport as it began to speed off again, far behind from the others.

The two children cuddled up next to Katlyn. She sure acted like a mother. Kate thought with a smile. She once again drifted off to sleep.

When she woke up the transport had stopped in a hanger, and people were getting up and walking around like sleepy zombies.

“Ug. What time is it?” She yawned.

“Ehh, about…four in the morning,” Tina replied, helping her up.

“Thanks. So, what happens now?”

“Now, now we fight,” Tina answered with the upmost seriousness.

Hours later they were all in a large room. “This,” Katlyn began pointing at a section of the huge government building. “Is where they keep those waiting to be experimented on.”

“What about the people still in the force field?” Mr. Jacks questioned.

“You and Kate will get them out, using the mirror trick-and with us attacking their H.Q., you shouldn’t have much trouble.”

“What about Tracy and I?” Darby asked, clearly nervous about being on the field.

“You’ll be with me in the medical bay, those people are going to need medical attention,” Maria responded.

“Oh thank heavens,” Darby sighed.

“Hopefully after this, they see we mean business and we can work out a deal,” Race stated.

“Look, while that is the hope, this mission could mean war, there is no turning back,” Katlyn reminded.

They all nodded. Kate wanted to do this. Being able to fight for what you believe in, to make the world a better place.

“Alright! Let’s do this!” Roy shouted.

She and Mr. Jakes sped off on a little hover bike towing two transports. They could soon see the blue glow of the force field in the horizon.

“We’re almost in position,” Kate said through a com.

“Ok, we’ll start the distraction,” Roy replied.

“We’d better hurry,” Mr. Jacks stated, turning the handle, boosting the speed of the bike.

Kate saw something that caught her eye. “Mr. Jacks! Mr. Jack! Look! It’s Baltimore, we’re in Baltimore!” She exclaimed, nearly bouncing out of her seat.

“Yes! Yes, Kate I see that,” Mr. Jacks laughed.

“Maybe we’ll find my family here!”

“Yes, maybe!”

When they arrived at the force field, they could see a large group of people hiding under some fallen building that formed a sort of hang-over…like a tent. They seemed to notice them as the large group began calling for help.

Kate used her mirror trick, and Mr. Jacks called for the people to run, which they did. “Thank you! Thank you so much!” Many thanked.

Kate looked for her parents in the crowd of thousands of men, women and children, but didn’t see them. Her heart sank. Mr. Jacks placed his hand on her shoulder.

“There are more people!” A woman told. “They’re trapped in the mall, three blocks east!”

“Ok, we will take you to safety, and then came back for them,” Mr. Jacks decided. He spoke into his com link, “Roy, we are going to need to make a second trip.”

“No problem, just make it quick.”

“Alright everyone, please remain in the transport, we are going to take you someplace safe!”

Minutes later, the medical bay was full of people in need of medical attention. “How are we going to-” before Tracy could finish her question, Maria turned into many Maria-s. “Cool!” Tracy whistled.

“We’re headed back out, there are more.”

“More?!” Darby cried.

“It Baltimore, there are thousands of people there!” Kate laughed, before speeding off.

Again, after a few minutes, they were back at the edge of the blue force field. Kate quickly used her mirror to create a hole in the field. She then hoped back onto the bike as they sped through the hole.

Following the woman’s directions, they zoomed east counting the blocks, until they reached the third block, and the run-down mall. A few people, having heard the engine peaked outside at them. “C’mon!” Kate yelled. “We’re getting you out of here!”

Thousands of people suddenly stormed out of the mall towards the transports. So many in fact, Kate worried they weren’t going to have enough room. Everyone packed in like sardines, not leaving anyone behind. Men even put children on their shoulders so there would be room.

“Hold on tight everyone! We’re getting out of here!” Kate called, smiling. She shone the mirror reflective side up, once again creating a hole in the field, freeing these people from their blue prison. Once on the other side, she could hear the people cheering and shout out of joy. They were free, because of her. It felt great, doing something to help others.

Just then Roy’s voice was heard; “We’re on our way back with some more people, what about you?”

“We’re on our way back too, with lots more people,” Kate laughed.

“You did good kid…oh and…we’ve got your family with us,” Roy smiled.

“Really! Are you sure its them!” Kate exclaimed.

“Yup, they keep askin’ for ya.”

Kate was so happy she almost began to cry, but she stopped when she realized how “uncool” that would be. Plus, she was too happy to cry, even if they were tears of joy. She was fighting to make the world a better place, she was freeing people, giving them hope, she was working with aliens-aliens! All this was amazing, uplifting, a once in a life time opportunity.

She looked back at the people in the transports their bike was towing, they all seemed so happy, and this made her happy. Everything is going to be fine. She smiled to herself. Just fine.

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