Requiem

Requiem is an epic taking place hundreds of lightyears away on a series of planets so similar and yet so different from our own. A war is brewing, a war between the planets Verigo and Onyxia. At the heart of the conflict, Daw'ka, a young seventeen year old boy living on Verigo finds himself torn by those he trusts, his life has been manipulated, warped and bent for reasons that he doesn't understand. Follow his life over months and years, as he travels hundreds of thousands of miles, as his very life becomes blighted by heartache, suicide, murder, love and betrayal. We also follow Helena, a young girl from a well off family living on Onyxia, she doesn't believe in the war, she wants only to meet new people on the 'enemy' planet, but as her life also becomes ripped apart her once noble thoughts become tainted by fear.

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7. Calm Before the Storm

Horndew High School was designed to be an ultimate place of learning during it's erection two centuries prior, it sat deep inside the labyrinth of buildings at the heart of Horndew. However, as the tension between the two planets became increasingly thick and violent, it was later taken over by the military, and became yet another classified building; just another place civilians weren't permitted to enter. The school was moved to a nearby block of flats, having to make do with occupying the top four floors. People blame this for the low pupil turnouts, others blame the breakdown in society. The numbers of students varied mostly depending on the weather and time of year. As the sun rose higher in the sky and the days became longer and warmer, the numbers of attendants dropped dramatically. It is only when the bad weather came in from the south that pupils attended in their droves, as a way of escape rather than to better themselves.

The classroom that Rilley sat in was testament to this, other than Rilley, Avril and Martan there was only four other people sitting waiting for the lecture to begin. A nameless four that probably wouldn't be seen again. Rilley never missed a class, it was the easiest way for him to pass time away from his home, Avril and Martan also never missed a lesson, but they had dreams of making it big and escaping the squalid conditions that they lived in. Graduation meant acceptance into the Imperial Military Academy, the first stepping stone for anyone wishing to have a better life.

This level of emptiness was seen clearly in the eyes of the teacher as he shuffled through the bleak metal door, a cup of coffee in his hand and a hangover on his face. He slumped over his desk, not looking at his students, his drawn pale face instead turning to a newspaper on his desk. 

"You'd think with all the military technology that we possess, the might that our planet has, that they could make a newspaper where the ink doesn't smudge," he griped. 

A joke perhaps but no one laughed, the four nameless just gazed out the window, not at anything in particular, all that could be seen was row after row of broken down apartments and endless decaying streets. Even this depressing view was better than that of the broken down and bitter teacher now rifling through his paper, slurping his coffee as he went.

"Rilley, you like this class don't you?" The teacher asked after a few silent moments.

"Yes sir," he replied.

"Yes, good. Well you're quite smart, why don't you see if you have the mental capacity to grab the books from the cupboard and hand them out, theres a task for you." The teacher said, returning to his newspaper. "Start at page one then two then three and so on until I say stop."

Rilley, who sat closest to the window, did as he was told, itching to get back to the place he was last up to in his text book, the others seemed less than thrilled. With all the books now distributed, and the room silent, everyone sat and tried their best to amuse themselves to pass the time; all except Rilley, who enjoyed a good read. 

He was up to chapter five when something caught his eye, the flashing long red hair of a girl down below outside the window, how he had noticed it was anyone's guess, but he had. She seemed to be running back and forth, looking under cardboard boxes and inside of bins. Searching for something no doubt, but Rilley assumed she was just another homeless orphan and was searching for food, a common practice in Horndew. So he returned to his books and thought nothing more of her, at least he tried to. His mind couldn't let go of the vision of the redhead, it was even stopping him from enjoying the poem, 'A Lovers Last Words' written by Elisia Moore, a piece written after the apocalypse on Astril; one of his favourites. 

At four o'clock, after the teacher had a quick nap, he raised his head and told them all to go home, a couple of the nameless had already left hours before. Rilley waved goodbye to his friends and made the long walk back to his apartment much earlier than he would have liked, but the view of the redhead was still dominating his thoughts. He looked up at the sky above and noticed dark clouds coming over from the south; tall, black and ominous. A flash of thunder and the heavens opened.

"Great," Rilley mumbled, "my day's just getting worse." 

He didn't know the half of it.
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