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“Why do you say that?” Kyane asked. She paced slowly back to her bike.
The amber-eyed figure took a step forward for every one of Kyane’s steps back. “Well, when I walk, I click.” Kyane heard clicks from his feet. They were like untrimmed dog nails on wood. “Your banging made it easy to move around.”
“Good,” Kyane said. “I’m so happy for you.” She placed her hand on the bike seat. Her hand was shaking. Great, just great. After that she attempted something bad, she had to pay for it in another way. Thank you, karma, she thought. You’re just the best.
The amber-eyed figure leaned forward. “It also let me find you faster.” The figure leaped forward. Kyane dodged out of the way. The figure collided with her bike. The bike flew backward into the street. A moving truck drove by, smashing the bike and taking it up the block. The figure placed its hand on the wall and turned. Kyane heard a scrapping. A high-pitched whine of nails on a chalkboard played through a blown-out speaker turned up to 11. Sparks flew when the figure removed his hand. Kyane saw deep cuts on the wall.
Kyane scooted backward. Her back hit the wall. The figure crept closer. Each clicking step matched her heartbeat. The figure leaned its amber eyes forward, and into the light of a streetlamp. A thin, forked tongue crept out of the figure’s mouth. She lifted her head back. Kyane tried to merge into the wall, and as far away from the figure as possible. The figure stepped into the light and Kyane peeked to see a dinosaur. Only, it was not quite a dinosaur. She could tell it looked like a velociraptor. It had an extended face, and sharp nails like from Jurassic Park. It was much taller than the ones in the movie and walked like a dog on its hind legs. It also had green, scaly skin, with a deep grid-like pattern. “What?” The raptor creature asked.
“Na..Nana…nothing,” Kyane said. Her heart felt like it was about to explode. The raptor creature pulled back its clawed hand. Kyane closed her eyes and rolled into the street. She felt the breeze of the claw pass her head and jam into the wall. She opened her eyes to see the raptor pulling its hand out of the wall. She rose and got into a fighting stance. “You better watch out. I’m part Japanese so I know kung-fu.”
The raptor turned to face her. She blinked, and the raptor swung its claw at her. Kyane blocked the scratch by the raptor creature. Her arms began to bleed. She repositioned her arms parallel to each other across her chest. The blue faces of the watch and belt aligned.
A blue light shot from the top watch face into the bottom face. Her wrists began to vibrate. Before she could move them apart a second blue light from the bottom watch to the belt shot out and vibrated her waist. The faces opened. Small pieces of black metal ejected from the empty space the faces once were. The raptor creature struck again. The metal pieces instantaneously clumped together, blocking the attack.
The faces of the watches and belt began emitting a blue grid onto Kyane’s body. She felt the vibration spread with it. The clumps of black metal b-lined to the spaces on the grid. The pieces expanded to fit the grid space. Each piece smacked against her body, then snapped together like a puzzle. It was overall painless except for two pieces smacking her butt, and the breastplate mashing onto her chest. A tickle carried up her neck as metal extended from the back, and chest plate, covering her neck. The final pieces of metal snapped together with blue glass in the middle forming a helmet with a visor. The helmet snapped onto her skin. The outfit was complete. She realized she was wearing battle armor. The raptor creature backed deeper into the dark alley. The raptor’s tail literally between its legs.
Kyane looked down and examined her arms in the armor. The armor was a futuristic ash gray/black color with blue highlights along the arms, legs, and chest. A text popped up the heads-up display. The text read: D13OUS. A vaguely British voice rang in her head “Hello. I am the Digital 13 Operational Unit System, also known as Dieous.” The D13OUS moved vertically and typed out the full words the voice said. “How may I assist you today Kyane Yorotis?”
Kyane whipped her head back and forth. The armor didn’t seem to impede her movements. The heads-up display read the street signs, gave her information on the rotten food, used boxes, and trash in the garbage bins, and showed an outline of Kyane’s body in green, with heart rate, and pulse rate monitoring below the figure. Both spiked up. It was more overwhelming than the one time she tried to drive a car. “What the hell is going on!? How do you know my name?” She looked at the retreating raptor creature. A blue bar scanned the creature and fed data into the HUD.
“When the facemask was applied, I scanned your face and ran that through the web, mostly social media, and your high school directory.” A photograph of a 13-year-old Kyane in a black turtleneck top, with braces, and her hair in a fishtail braid.
“Ah huh, great,” Kyane said. “What is that thing?” She pointed her science fiction armored finger at the raptor.
The HUD scanned the raptor creature. In the corner of the HUD Dieous ran an image search through the internet. It appeared as a flipbook scrolling through photos. “It appears to be a velociraptor, in Latin meaning ‘sift seizer.’ Its humanoid body indicates an evolutionary change. Running the face through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, the FBI, Interpol, and Tower City police database I could not find anything on him. My best guess is that the creature is an alien of some kind. This could be literal, or man-made.”
Kyane nodded her head. She heard the whirrs of gears. “Cool, invaded by aliens.”
The raptor leaned down on its hands and extended its head. The forked tongue slithering out. “It appears to be planning an attack against us.”
Kyane took a step back. “I can see that. Do we have any weapons to kill it?”
Dieous ran a full body scan on the armor. “Negative. The weapons systems were never installed.” The AI then brought up online videos boxing, wrestling, and martial arts movies. “However, we do have physical combat.”
Kyane stepped her foot forward again and raised her fists. “I can dig it.”
She waved her knuckles to break them, she could hear the metal pieces click and vier with the subtle movements. The raptor leaped forward. The heart rate monitor on the HUD spiked. “Take a breath Kyane Yorotis. Just punch him,” Dieous said.
Kyane swung her right fist back, then launched it forward into the raptor’s face. There was little resistance from the punch. She could feel each sharpened tooth bend, and snap into the creature’s jaw, then break, and finally fly back into the side of the garbage bin, denting it. There was a loud bang, followed by a dog bark. “Hell yeah!” Kyane pumped her fist.
“The velociraptor type creature is not done yet.” Kyane looked over to see the raptor stand up. Its jaw was a crumpled piece of paper. Blood ran down its mouth. “The punch seemed to physically break his face, but his claws on his arms seem to still be intact.” The HUD highlighted his arms in red.
The raptor stretched his claws, then jumped into the air, bringing its claws down in a slashing motion. Kyane raised her arms up. She felt the raptor collide with her arms, and heard the claws break when they touched the armor. Kyane separated her arms, stepped forward, and slammed the raptor in the chest with her forearm. The raptor fell backward. “How does he look now?” The HUD scanned and read that the raptor’s rib cage was crushed.
“You must kill it, Kyane Yorotis.”
“It’s just Kyane. You don’t have to say my whole name, dude.”
“Okay, just Kyane. At the alien’s current state, with its inability to eat solid foods, and crushed chest cavity it would take two days with zero treatment before he died. This assumes that its metabolic rate is comparable to a human.”
“Just kill it, got it.” Kyane began walking toward the raptor. She could hear her weighted footsteps on the concrete. She watched the raptor wriggle on the ground, failing to get up. There was a car honking, and a loud screech of tires on the road.
“Kyane, behind you,” Dieous said.
Kyane spun around to see a pile of rubber, metal, aluminum, and spokes fly at her. “Take your shit back! I hope you got money to pay for my truck you dick!” They were the remainder of the bicycle. Behind the ball of her bike was a large man with rolled-up sleeves on a green t-shirt with the logo of a moving company. The ball of trash bounced off her body and onto the ground. Kyane looked down at the bike, then looked up at the person that through the bike remains. Dieous ran the man’s face through its usual databases. She found out his name was Daryl Brackhound, a 28-year-old Tower City High School Graduate. He was recently divorced from his high school sweetheart. She left him for an up and coming employee of a law firm in Chicago. From Daryl’s bank statements, he has a drinking problem, or really enjoys cheap wings from Hooters. She stepped forward, into the light. Daryl realized he made a mistake. His heart rate spiked. His left middle finger twitched. “Hey man, sorry. Nevermind me. Bye!” Daryl ran across the street into his crushed-up truck and drove away.
“That was a very strange encounter,” Dieous added.
“I am hella dead.” Kyane scanned the bike. It was beyond saving. The HUD brought up the brand of bike. It was a red Diamondback racing bike. MSRP of $260. It was a birthday present for Kyane last year when she started high school.
“The alien, Kyane.”
“Right!” She spun back around to see the raptor creature gone. Blood ran up, and along the walls. “Track him!”
Dieous scanned the blood, followed the remaining blood trail up the wall. “You can jump to the roof and I can track him further.” Kyane nodded and smiled. She scrunched her legs, then jumped up. Her body left the ground and soared. The HUD displayed a graphic of propulsion engines coming from the calf plates. On the sides were air vents sucking in air with the middle pushing fire out. Her gut flew into her throat. Her heart rate spiked. “Are you okay, Kyane?”
“I’m flying!” She angled her body and landed on the roof with a thump.
“You were not flying. You were leaping a tall height using amplified thrust technology to give you a lift.”
“Buzzkill. Just find that raptor thing,” she said. Dieous scanned the roof. The HUD brought up the trail of blood leading to the edge of the roof. She walked over to the white ledge. He looked down to see no blood. Dieous then began creating a predictive model for where the raptor could have gone. Kyane followed by rooftop.