Just Another Face in the Crowd

John Smith is quite possibly the most average teenager on the face of the planet.

Until the night he renders the laws of physics obsolete and throws his city into chaos.

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7. Seven

 

Exactly one meter before colliding with the ground, John extended his arms and stopped in mid-air.

The force of his sudden halt caused the pavement beneath him to crack and a shockwave rippled outwards, causing people to fall over and vehicles to tip unsteadily. A loud boom accompanied said shockwave.

John hovered in the air, his arms contorting into grotesque positions.

His golden irises reflected the red, white and blue lights of the vehicles surrounding him.

Officers and SWAT members opened fire on him.

John smiled, and simply raised his arms. All the bullets stopped just in front of him. He pushed all the bullets into a ball by moving his hands in the shape of a sphere, and then pulled his hands apart quickly.

Every bullet fired at him exploded back outwards, striking almost everyone in the vicinity, tearing their bodies to ribbons.

John roared again, with not as much power as before. Everyone on the street was pushed back violently.

Some had their ribs cracked as they tried to resist the force.

He was smiling from ear to ear. He began laughing.

Whatever was controlling John had no sanity whatsoever.

As he cackled like a madman, John began warping gravity along the entire street. People, vehicles, even uprooted streetlamps and mailboxes were lifted into the air. There were screams all around. Bullets were fired wildly.

John threw his arms down, and everything slammed back onto the road and pavement.

Some were killed instantly, but many remained alive, although injured.

The street around him was the image of chaos. Fires had sparked to life throughout the boulevard, cars were overturned, corpses were lying around in gut-wrenching states of dismemberment, and people were running around, crying and searching for loved ones.

Behind him was the skyscraper he had just leapt off, minus all its windows. Directly across the street from him was a pizzeria, with customers hiding under tables and some trying to catch a glimpse of the mayhem via the windows.

He knew the pizzeria; Rachel had told him about how she loved to go there.

Suddenly, John’s golden irises flickered, turning dull blue for just a second.

Rachel, he thought.

John thought.

He was back in control; but only for that one second.

The entity controlling him was apparently angered by John’s apparent temporary awareness.

The metal device hooked onto his spine glowed with an incredibly bright blue light as John raised his arms, and began to roar.

About ten floors up the skyscraper behind him, cracks began to appear. Massive cracks, spreading quickly. The sound of metal and concrete breaking apart was deafening.

John was going to collapse the tallest building in the city.

His roar stopped, his vocal cords strained, but he kept breaking into the foundation of the building. It was not structurally sound anymore. It could fall apart at any second.

John stopped suddenly, and dust rained down behind him like a dense fog. The skyscraper was still at risk, but John had stopped ripping into its concrete.

He stopped because someone was approaching him amidst the all the devastation.

He squinted his eyes, trying to see through the thick screen of dust.

It was Rachel.

She was wearing a beautiful green dress, which was now torn and covered in dust. Her scarlet hair was messy and her eyes revealed her fear.

“John?” she asked, coughing.

John’s irises flickered to the original dull blue again.

“Rachel? What are you doing here? It’s not safe,” he said, regaining his mind for a moment.

Tears were streaming down her face. “John, what’s going on?”

John began shedding tears of his own. “I don’t know. I don’t know. It’s not me, Rachel,” he sobbed.

“I know,” Rachel replied softly, looking into John’s eyes as he floated above the ground, “I know. I’ve seen your eyes.”

“I can’t fight it. It’s- it’s like some kind of creature in my head. I don’t know what it is!” John shouted in frustration, grabbing at his hair. He looked down at her arm and noticed a bloody gash running down her forearm.

“Rachel, was that me? Did I hurt you?” John asked quietly, a horrified look on his face. She looked straight at him and did not answer.

“Damn it, John, you can fight this thing. I know you can. Please, just stop,” Rachel pleaded.

She lifted her arm to touch his face lightly. The moment her fingers made contact-

John’s eyes flickered back to gold and he roared violently. The sound alone would have killed Rachel, but John’s irises flickered again and he redirected the sound.

Rachel did not move. “John, please, I know you can do this. Just stop.”

John tried his best; it was like trying to hold back a wall of lava using a paper plate. The entity inside him was like a demon, malicious and terrifyingly powerful.

His eyes nearly flickered back to gold again, when Rachel looked at him and spoke.

“I love you.”

John stopped. The light in his irises faded. The glow from the device on his back died down.

John collapsed to the ground in a heap. Rachel broke down in sobs and fell to her knees next to him.

As she did, John raised his head. “Rachel?” he asked in a gravelly voice.

She looked up, her face dusty and tear-stained. “Yeah?”

“Did you wear that dress for our date?” he asked, the ghost of a smile flickering across his face.

She nodded, as fresh tears began welling at the corners of her bright green eyes.

“It’s beautiful.”

Rachel managed to whisper thanks.

“Rachel?”

“Hmm?”

“I love you too.”

Around twenty minutes later, amidst the fires and destruction, three unmarked black vans drove on scene and apprehended John Smith.

As he was being hauled into the vehicles by men dressed completely in black, one man overheard John muttering something under his breath.

“I’ll fix this. I promise.”

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