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Kyane walked over and joined the two on the plastic seats. The Superintendent came up to the stage first. Behind him were the families of the victims. They held framed photos of their loved ones in their lap. Many couples held each other for comfort. Frigid winter wind made everyone as cold on the outside as they were on the inside. The moon rose higher into the sky and the floodlights burst on. The Superintendent was an old white man with a gold tie. He walked up to the podium, shuffled his speech cards, cleared his throat then gave a speech about the sadness and damage losing members of the school can be. Kyane could not tell how meaningful the words he said were. He had not been there, saw the violence, and was able to go home and stew in it. Then again if he did see what really caused the violence his tone would be incredibly different. He finished his speech, gave pause for the audience to clap then shook the hand of every family member on the stage.
The next people to come up was the governor, followed by the district congressional members. They each gave their own similar speeches, as well as told the children and remaining siblings large scholarships for any college or university they wanted to go to. They then shook the family members hands.
The next group to come up we’re the family members, and close friends of the victims. During the changeover Jamie grabbed his stomach and got up. He shuffled past Kyane and Desmond, turned the corner and ran out of the stadium.
The student government members and exec board who acted as assistants had all gone inside the stadium leaving the school empty. Jamie went up to one of the locked doors. On the side sat a black box used to scan teacher ID cards. He lifted it up and jerked it off the wall to reveal strands of colored wires behind. He removed a small screwdriver and opened the back of the box. The wires were coiled around like a snake pit. He grabbed the wires and pulled them. With the stranded ends he began running through the possible combinations of touching the strands together to open the door. Each failure was rewarded with an angry buzz and flashing red light. When he finally got the right combination, he heard a remote click from the door, and green light emanating from the box. He pulled the door open, propped it with his foot in order to place the box back on the wall, and walked inside careful not to slam the door shut.
The school was dark with the only light entering the building from the stadium lights. Jamie took out his cellphone and flicked on the flashlight app. He scanned the walls of bland lockers, walls, student-made works for classes and clubs, and empty classrooms. His light reflected off the classroom door windows made it look like a ghost trailed him. His echoing steps emphasized the haunted vibes and raised the hairs on the back of his neck.
Jamie studied the school’s internet system and building schematics since he was in 8th grade to prepare himself to enter high school. The server’s security footage was held in the basement under the main office. He walked through the open school and up to a similar security box near the office. He copied his action from before and clicked the lock into the office. The front office was small with a single long desk with two computers set up behind a reflexive glass. Next to him was a large door into the principal’s office. Behind him were rows of file cabinets with the TCHS logo above it. He sat down at one of the computers and started it up.
The blue light from the computer brightened the whole room. Jamie turned off his phone’s light and plugged it into the computer. The security login screen popped up. Jamie typed on his phone and tapped the enter key bringing up a backdoor login screen and got into the system. He quickly got into the server and got to the security camera footage for the day of the attack. He pressed the button to open it. A file error box flickered onto his phone screen. He slapped his head feeling dumb because of course the military would delete the file. He tapped the edge of his phone on the desk while he tried to figure out solutions. He slapped his phone down when he got it. He backed out of the video server and went to the trash server. It was empty, meaning it was recently cleared out.
Jamie backed out and planned on going into a second history server when a green tear ripped through the empty space on the other side of the main office. The green light flickered along the walls, roof, and Jamie’s glasses.
Jamie felt his body turn into a statue. He knew exactly what was coming.
He quickly stood up. The chair tumbled to the ground. Jamie ran to the door to the principal’s office. He tugged on the handle. The door jiggled back and forth but never opened. Jamie turned back to see a blue and green raptor type creature emerge from the tear. His claws clicked on the cold floor. Nyasan emerged from the tear. He sniffed the air and picked up the remains of a familiar scent.
Jamie rolled under the desk and placed his back against the wall. He covered his mouth with his right hand and reached for his phone with his left. He patted the pocket to quickly realize his phone sat plugged into the computer above him. He knocked the back of his head against the wall. His cranium made an echoed thud.
Nyasan turned his head to the sound of the thud, then sniffed the surrounding air. “I can see that the computer you were using is still on,” he said meticulously. He clicked toward the office, then rapped on the protective glass. Each tick of the claws on his hand sent shivers to places shivers should not go. “Come out now so I don’t have to cause any more damage to the building, and therefore increase suspicion.”
Under the desk, Jamie tapped his foot on the floor rapidly. He couldn’t call for any help, he had no idea if Dieous would come in time to save him. Eorapst was very kill first ask questions after everyone was dead, after all. This was the worst situation for him to be in. He expelled a heap of oxygen out of his nose and through his fingers.
“You smell like Eorapst and his gang,” Nyasan said. He clicked over to the door into the office. “I can guess you are abstaining from giving up because he was incredibly ‘trigger happy’ as your species calls it and must assume, I am the same way. I am not. I would just like to talk to you since you are one of the few you saw our dear lieutenant get his comeuppance.”
Jamie shot up from the desk without thinking. His hands were raised to shoulder height. “I-I uhh-I-uh-don’t know how much help I will be,” he finally got out.
Nyasan tapped on the black box Jamie hacked to get into the building. “Just come out of that box and I will see how helpful you can be to us.” Jamie slowly walked toward the door. He kept his eyes on his phone. Nyasan saw him eyeing his device. “I feel it pertinent to mention to you that you opening this door is a courtesy for your sake. I am just as strong as Eorapst but I am choosing to let you come out on your own accord. Do not do anything you think would make me change my mind.”
Jamie went right to the door and opened it. Up close, Nyansa was shorter than him, probably around 5’4 or 5’3, but had defined muscles and a waving tail. “You-You don’t have to do that.” He exited the room slowly.
Nyansa stepped closer. Jamie stood motionless and took in the glowing anomaly to modern science as we understood it. Nyansa saw him wide-eyed and frozen. Nyansa sniffed him along the shoulders, down the arms, and around the torso. A mix of hormones, everyday smells of the city, the school, and whatever his home was like flooded Nyansa’s nostrils. Beneath all those scents wafted around was Eorapst’s, and his soldiers. “Who was it that killed lieutenant Eorapst and his soldiers?” he asked.
“A superhero,” Jamie said. Nyansa’s hot breath blew into his face.
Nyansa nodded. “Those fictitious comic books, and movie character. They do not exist.”
“This one does,” Jamie said. He imagined the steel armor, blue lights, and gruff, yet distorted voice of Dieous. A torrent of courage spread through him. “He is real, strong, and took out a bunch of your goons already-”
“And he’s right here,” said the gruff, yet distorted voice of Dieous. His blue eyeshield, wrist gauntlets, and belt blasted away the darkness of the school.
“Dieous!” Jamie exclaimed.
“Good. You got here faster than I wanted. Now on to phase two,” Nyansa said. He cracked his tail and wrapped it around Jamie’s waist.
“Jamie!” Dieous said. He accelerated down the hallway. The thrusters from his legs slightly melted the paint off the walls around them.
Nyansa flipped backward and leaped into the portal he came from. Jamie followed closely behind him. He was a dog on a leash. Dieous threw a right punch. His fist phased through the tear. The portal crackled green electricity from its center and compressed itself into a small green ball. The lightning tore along walls and spread black, root-like burns. Dieous grabbed the green ball with his bare hand. Its sparks warmed, then quickly burned Kyane’s hand through the metal. Kyane opened her hand to see the green quickly evaporating away. He collapsed to his knees. His hands instinctively became fists.
“Die, call my parents and Jerry. The UDCs have a hostage,” Kyane said.