Outcast, Heathen

The year is 2413, and humanity is no longer free. After encountering an alien race called the Heathen, hope was lost. They let us live to serve, and some are more than happy to live in peace this way. Others can't resist an opportunity to fight back. **NOTE** Due to dire disagreements with my chosen operating system, Outcast will sadly be going some time without an update, either until the data is recovered or I have managed to recreate the scenes. Thank you, sorry, and I hope you enjoy what's there while I work like mad to update!

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4. Chapter Three

“Peppermint Brown,” the teacher called my name, startling me and every other person there. Azrael gave a tentative glance my way, concerned as I stood. “Please collect your belongings and clear out your locker. You've been transferred to the College to begin training.”

I lifted my books slowly, terrified. “Um...Training for what?”

She fixed me with a stare. “Escorting.”

A few people snickered, but some of the male Heathen eyed me approvingly. Az just stared fixedly at the front of the class, and last I saw his face he was concentrating hard on hiding his anger.  Why was he angry?  This was a chance to dodge the most of poverty, if I was purchased by a wealthy Heathen.  Most of my family's money came from my mother's servitude to Atlas, after all.

So, if Azrael knew this, why wouldn't he be happy for this chance at a better life?

I kept to myself through the halls, finding my locker silently to begin collecting my books.  I didn't have much, just what the school could provide.  As soon as I was finished grabbing my books, my locker door slammed shut before I had a chance to reach for it.  A hand rested there, belonging to the Heathen I found most revolting.

"Minos," I nearly groaned in greeting.  I watched myself, though, knowing the penalty for disrespecting a Heathen, in public of all places. "How can I help you?"

He grinned, eyeing me greedily. "A sample of your escorting expertise, but that's against code, isn't it?"

"Even if it wasn't, an escort is free to choose her Heathen to serve until such point as a purchase is made for private ownership, with the highest ranking Heathens being the primary contract choices in such an event," I quoted from my mother's escort legal books.  I smiled a little too sweetly. "There are always other choices, Superior Minos."

He leaned on the lockers, laughing quietly. "Not in a private auction, Peppermint.  Then it's a simple matter of...politics."

He left me alone with those words, feeling violated and naked.  I shuddered and kept going, not wanting to be late for my initiation into College.

 

 

School let out, but Mint still hadn't returned to class. I should have known better than to hope that she would. She'd been called to College, after all. She was going to be trained as an escort, and there was nothing I could do about it.

There was a cackle behind me, and I recognized the voice of Minos, the punk leader of the local Heathen gang. Not that the Heathen thought of them as a gang, simply a social group. I only had a varied opinion due to my misfortune of receiving beatings from them regularly. Again, my poor physical condition and meek personality did little to serve me in my society.

“Good afternoon, gentlemen,” I greeted with a sarcastic sigh. I turned to face them, Minos and his goons grinning like blood-hounds. “How can I help you?”

“How about you start by getting on your knees to beg for mercy?” sneered Minos, not much larger than myself. His mottled skin colors made him look diseased, reminding me of some poisoned beetles I had been studying in Sciences.

I set my bag of studying materials aside to avoid them being damaged. “Why not skip those steps and get this beating over with, Minos? I have places to be.”

“Right, tutoring that slime-brained little ape,” chuckled one goon, a rather large, midnight-black specimen with milk-white eyes and veins of the same color branching across his skin. I had a moment to appreciate the poetry of his visage, looking like a galaxy against the night. “Lucky for her, escorting only requires a pretty face.”

Minos grinned. “If I owned her, I wouldn't be concerned about how pretty her face is.”

Something inside me sparked, angered by their comments about Mint. I straightened suddenly, fists tensed to throw a punch. “You would probably ruin any face with your Mirian rot, you carrion beetle!”

Minos glared at me for that, and I was glad I struck a nerve. He'd long since deserved it, and so much more. “Hard to keep up with the boy who ruined a legacy by hatching.”

His goons chortled at that, and I threw the first punch. My fist made contact to his jaw, flooring him while my hand throbbed in pain. But I couldn't care less, pinning his arms with my knees and throwing blow after blow until I was dragged from him kicking and screaming, just to be pinned and beaten myself.

Even outnumbered and bruised by the minute, I finally felt good.  Decent.  Fighting this way felt right, it made me happy!  I knew there must have been something wrong with me, but I didn't care.  If I had a chance, I would have done the same thing over again.

As if to prove me wrong, before he left Minos bent to speak to me quietly so that no one else could hear, "I just want you to know, contract or not, once you're out of the picture I will have your bitch of a human at least once, for my pleasure."

I just stared at him numbly as he left me on the ground, bleeding, and I knew there was nothing in my power I could do to stop him.

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