Neel Dervin and The Dark Angel

He was a teenage super soldier.
There were certain questions that fourteen year old Neel Dervin had never thought to ask himself.
Like how much pain he could endure before passing out. Or how many times he could be shot and still keep running. Or how often he could lie to his friends and family without feeling remorse.
But then that one fateful day changed his life forever, and set him on a path towards immeasurable power as well as inconceivable terror.
Now the only people who can help him deal with the situation are complete strangers who are using him for their own ends. Trapped in circumstances beyond his control with abilities he barely understands, he must navigate a treacherous path mired in betrayals and difficult choices to take back control of his life


10. CHAPTER 6: Dangerous Games - Part 1

For the rest of the week, Neel continued his visits to Swan labs. Just as he seemed on the point of mastering one technique, his trainers introduced something new for him to learn. He was taught a myriad of ways to kick, to punch, to duck and to side step. He was shown how to roll on the ground and remove virtually all the force of impact from a fall. He was taught the correct way to hold onto a ledge without falling off or becoming tired, and was made to practice regularly to use his entire body to get past obstacles.

The speed of the training was intense, yet Neel was amazed to find that he was able to keep up. It seemed that the Doctor Fahim's explanation had given was correct. He was able to recall all the lesson he had been taught by Arjun and the other trainers. It was getting easier to control his senses the more time he spent exercising his body, and all the time he had alone to himself after his mother went to work in the morning was spent in practicing as well.

He had not seen Doctor Fahim or Divya for the rest of the week, even though he knew they were observing him from the room over the gym. The knowledge made him even more self conscious and anxious not to make a fool of himself while training.

On the last day of the week, Neel was put through his exercises by his trainers. He was finishing his sixtieth lap around the field when Arjun called for him to stop. He walked with Arjun over to the smaller field to work on the bars again.

Neel had told Arjun about the incident at the bazaar. Arjun had explained how his strength differed from a normal person's.

"Physical strength is not as simple a concept as you might believe." he said. "You have a lower level of strength, like everyone else, that you use for the normal things like touching and holding things. But when people have to use more force on an object, they automatically use their upper level of strength. For you, that upper level of strength is now much higher. So where a normal person can push at a car with all his strength without anything happening, you can push that car upside down with yours. It happens automatically for you, just like everyone else, and that's what happened at the bazaar. As you train, it should become easier for you to learn the limits of your upper and lower strength levels again to decide where you should use each level."

The workout now was intense, and smooth. Neel's balance had improved beyond all recognition. Whether it was the superior memory, or because the novelty of the whole experience had not yet worn off, or perhaps the fact that he was very earnest about what he was learning, but the movements he performed now were confident and automatic. As he jumped from barrier to barrier, raced along walls and rolled neatly to a dive, Arjun watched his progress, and was glad to see that it was all becoming instinctive, and a part of his muscle memory.

"You're going back to school from Monday, right?" Arjun asked him once the session had ended and they were returning from the field.

Neel nodded. "After a week." He sighed. So much had happened in that one week of such incredible nature that he almost felt that a stranger would now be going back to the school.

"Well, your visits to Swan labs will have to be curtailed once you add school to your daily life." Arjun said. "It's been decided that two hours after school will do from now on. We'll meet at the usual place at two, and you'll be dropped back at four."

Neel nodded slowly. All that day he had been thinking about school. He would need to be completely in control there, all the time. And after a week of training he felt much more confident now that that he would be able to do so as long as he was careful. At any rate, he was hoping for the best. Turning around, he focused his attention on the tall bluff twenty feet away, and prepared to jump.
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