Sunday, November 15, 2015

Hunted – Firestarter

Birley Community College was a small secondary school in Sheffield, England which maintained strong links with Sheffield Hallam University, allowing them to take on a number of student teachers. One of these student teachers upheld multiple identities, one a child psychologist, another a medical professor, a third as a Uni student, as well as a host of other personas that made him the most powerful man on the planet. And the planet was about to make him very, very angry.

As a Uni student, Tom was still learning to be a teacher, but as a collection of all of his alter-egos, he was smart enough to teacher each of the students everything they need to know to become the next batch of scientists, doctors, surgeons or astronauts who would lead humanity to great things. However, with his knowledge comes one big drawback: He can’t see the otherside of an argument, he believes himself to be right and so will not let go of his argument.

On this particular day, he was sat with a group of students working on two-way table problems when an army soldier walked through the door and asked for the one person that Tom recognised: Sam Blimpford.
            ‘Why? What’s he done,’ one of the students asked as the teacher told Sam to gather his things. Tom meanwhile grabbed his Timothy ID out of his bag.
            ‘Sorry, that’s classified,’ the soldier responded calmly.
            ‘To her maybe, but not to me,’ Tom stated simply showing the soldier his ID.
            ‘Professor?’ he stated shocked. ‘What are you doing here?’
            ‘Irrelevant,’ Tom stated simply. ‘What do you need with Sam?’
            ‘The UN is tired of waiting for you and Bridget to finish your cure,’ he explained. ‘We have been ordered to round up all protectors.’
            ‘And then what?’ Tom pushed.
            ‘Kill them, they are far too dangerous to be left to their own devices,’ he explained.
            ‘How many soldiers are here today?’ Tom questioned.
            ‘Just me,’ the soldier admitted.
            ‘Okay,’ Tom stated simply. ‘Come on Sam.’
            ‘I’m not going anywhere with him if he wants to kill me,’ Sam retorted.
            ‘Move NOW Protector,’ Tom ordered, hoping that Sam’s underlying instincts would take control and cause him to begin moving. Luckily he did. ‘Lead the way,’ Tom told the soldier.

Once the soldier turned and began walking back out the door, Tom quickly snapped his neck and let the soldier drop to the floor, shocking the entire class behind him. He quickly grabbed his phone out of his pocket and used it to call Kyle.
            ‘Hello,’ Kyle started whilst taking a bite out of his sandwich.
            ‘I need you to teleport every protector to the house right now, including any children that they may have had,’ Tom ordered as he pulled the dead soldier into the classroom.
            ‘What? Why?’ he responded as he made his way to the elevator.
            ‘Remember the ten protectors that went missing the other day?’
            ‘Yes,’ Kyle stated calmly. ‘You said that their powers just became too weak for our detectors to locate.’
            ‘Yeah, well I was wrong,’ Tom sighed. ‘They’re hunting us, and they aren’t going to stop until we make them stop.’
            ‘So…am I leave certain people where they are then?’
            ‘Yes,’ Tom decided after a few seconds of silence. ‘We are going to need all the leverage we can get if we are going to convince them to not exterminate us.’
            ‘And if they don’t?’ Kyle questioned.
            ‘Then we fight,’ Tom replied simply. ‘They want to kill us, then we’ll kill them.’
            ‘What about you?’ Kyle aske ‘Am I bring you in?’
            ‘Not yet,’ Tom responded as he formed a knife of temporal energy in his free hand. ‘If they want to hunt us, then we get to hunt them.’
            ‘Be careful,’ Kyle nodded as he climbed into the small pod that Tom had had built for him in order to perform the mass teleportation.

Tom waited in the room until Sam disappeared before heading towards the room where he knew another protector to be. As he approached the room that she was in, the door swung open and the girl was thrown out into the hallway shortly before the soldier calmly stepped out.
            ‘Hey!’ Tom called out as the soldier aimed his gun at the girl’s head.
            ‘Go back into your classroom,’ the soldier ordered. ‘This doesn’t effect you.’
            ‘You’d be surprised,’ Tom snarled as he threw his knife at the soldier, who turned and avoided the knife. However, when he aimed his gun at Tom, he found that he was gone, as was the girl he was trying to kill.
            ‘Where are you?’ he snarled.
            ‘I’m nowhere and everywhere,’ Tom laughed cryptically as he zoomed past the soldier, cutting the back of his leg in the process.
            ‘You’re just adding to the fire,’ the soldier warned. ‘By killing us you are only opening up the way for us to level you and your base.’
            ‘You started the fire,’ Tom smiled as he came to a stop in front of the soldier. ‘Why am I not allowed to poke it a little?’
            ‘You want us to destroy you?’ the soldier asked, confused.
            ‘No. I want you to leave us alone,’ Tom snarled. ‘But you won’t, not if you think you can beat us. So either you realise we are too powerful for you to defeat and surrender, or you all fall in a war you can’t win.’
            ‘What makes you so sure?’ the soldier asked politely.
            ‘Because your best friend could be human, or be protector, or even be alien,’ Tom warned with a smile that the soldier found extremely disconcerting. ‘Or, even your child could be one of us.’
            ‘I don’t think so,’ the soldier snapped. ‘He has never shown any signs of having superhuman abilities.’
            ‘He won’t do unless he feels threatened. None of the protectors that you are hunting have used their powers since they were reset,’ Tom explained before disappearing into a blur.

The soldier didn’t see him again. He didn’t see anyone again. And no one saw him again. A couple of teachers ran out of their rooms to investigate what all the commotion was about only to find a pile of dust.

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