That survival instinct, that will to live, that need to get back to life again, is more powerful than any consideration of taste, decency, politeness , manner, civility. Anything. It's such a powerful force.
Chapter 1: Part 1: Survival of the Fittest. The will to live.
Date: Thursday May 28 , 2009
Time: 6:42: 56 A.M.
Location: Bronx, Neo New York City.
A single gunshot broke out.
Another gunshot broke out.
The gunshots continued.
One by one.
One after another.
Each shot echoing.
The gunshots continued.
In the early quiet morning several gunshot broke out in a small corner store in New York City.
Ten to be exact and with that the magazine fell out of the gun and landed on the floor with a "clink".
On the other side of the room the obvious target to those 10 bullets.
A small radio which sat upon a dresser stand.
The radio which now had three bullet holes in it.
The wall behind the broken radio had seven bullets holes, as it missed the radio completely.
"Damn" a voice broke out. "It is a lot harder to hit a small target when a small handgun recoils like that huh?"
In the small room the voice came from a man dressed in black sitting atop a
storecounter. In his hand was a Beretta M9A1 Semi-Automatic Pistol.
To some a handgun was nothing more than a weapon, but to the man on the counter who fired the 10 shots into a small radio it meant the world to him.
A sign of dominance.
A sign of power.
Back to the radio.
The small piece of scrap did not deserve to be called to a radio after the damage it suffered. It looked like nothing more than Swiss cheese.
One man spoke from the other side of the room "Dude what the hell is your problem?" the man walking down the store aisle in dressed in all black said to the man sitting at the store counter waving the gun around looking for another object to call target practice.
The man on the store counter looked back and reached into his pockets of his dark black jacket and pulled out another magazine for his handgun and loaded it into his gun as he found a new target to set his gun on.
One man spoke angrily "Hey did you know how hard it was to smuggle that gun and the bullets into the this city without tipping of the police and others authorities?"
"We don't have enough ammo for you to be shooting recklessly, especially on a useless target"
"I know that" spat the man on the counter as he closed one of his eyes to focus "Unless your permitted by the damn city you can't hold one of these bad boys, let alone own one I was just getting use to it. We weren't able to sneak that many in to use so we had no practice with them"
"So what of it?" the man in the aisle said "We got a few and that all that matters would you agree?"
The man on the counter lowered the weapon and adjusted himself to face everyone.
"But why is that, I mean this city is fixing it population to become super powered-freaks. The city exist for that one purpose. The city tells what to do, what time to be inside, what rules to follow and how to follow them and that if you are useful to them if not you are swept under the rug as an existence not even worth mentioning, when did the majority become less to these super powered-freaks"
The man at counter tighten the grip of the small black handgun in his hand and spoke "I don't wanna live in a city with regulations like that". To the man on the counter the weapon was a sign of power that could not be denied, to him it was a part of him to be used in any way he wanted, his own power.
"But what can you do about it man those rules were set up by the higher ups. Did you forget that most of the population are kids and teenagers?" a voice spoke out.
No...I did not forget that..." The man on the counter adjusted himself slightly and place his hand on the side of his face.
"...and those are not kids, those are monsters". He continued as he adjusting the tone of voice.
An eerie sight to those watching.
Half his body was covered in shadows as spoke.
As if the man was swallowed by the ever growing shadows.
The man demeanor change drastically.
"For whatever reason they have personal or otherwise the majority of the population of it city abandon it humanity a long time ago to obtain powers.
"Magicians, Spellcasters, Fragments, and Espers this whole city exist for them...The city's pride and joy don't make me laugh"
The man on the counter began to focus the weapon in his hand.
To the man on the counter this weapon his answer to the gap of power between him and the super powered population.
The man on the counter readjusted himself and prepared to fire again at a tower of cans.
Suddenly there was three knocks on the the window glass from outside of the corner store breaking the tension in the room.
The four men inside dressed in in black knew what that meant.
Somebody was coming.
"Already huh?" the man on the store counter said "Keep quiet everyone and this will pass"
The door to the corner store opened and the bell attached to the wall so when the door open the store owner would be aware of customers, with that knowledge in mind everyone eyes in the store focused on the door with that a large man walked in dressed in all black from his head to his toe.
The large man walk in and closed the door to the corner store behind him.
The large man turn around to face the leader of the now five men dressed in black, the man on the counter spoke
"So who is coming?"
The large man at the door spoke " It 's one of those robots that pollute the city, it must have heard the gunshot from inside the store"
And with that statement everybody looked at the man sitting atop of the store counter.
"Hey,hey don't look at me" the man said jokingly. "I was just testing the weapon, it would have been worse to find out when we need it and it does not work...would you not agree?"
"Well none of that matters now does it?"
(So what now?) With the threat approaching the man on the counter thought to himself. (What do we do now?)
New York City the technological futuristic city with a population of with a little less of 8.2 million people has manage to built a line of "Helper Robots" or so they were called. They help the city and it not so normal population with everyday task throughout The City of New York. The robots would pick up litter, tend to the resident of New York City, alert emergency crews for any problems within the city.
The robot in question that was approaching was the new security robot. It was a new prototype line of robots introduce to help the police against it super powered population.
With a population of New York City, you had to to introduce something that could handle reality warpers who could create and destroy on a whim or when certain conditions are met. The main way the robots dealt with the reality warpers was with a High Pitch Frequency the robots would give off in an attempt to subdue the perpetrator(s) in question.
The High Pitch Frequency was enough to disarm most of the population within the city.
The sound affected the brain and created a situation where one power cannot be used without it hurting the user or any one nearby as most reality warpers needed to concentrate for their powers to work. A magician or spellcasters can manipulate certain events and their surrounding with certain objects, and spells and call it magic. Fragments and Esper initially follow the same pattern executing their powers, for espers they would have to manipulate their "Invisible Angelic Aura" surrounding the their bodies to use their powers and fragments would to be near or in-contact the element their are align with to manipulate.
The magician or spellcaster would ultimately have to create a situation where the power would exist to bring their power into this world. If one where to had all the magical objects correctly set up, they would be able to use magic, but if the brain was affected and the magician or spellcaster would activate the spell in question the spell would backfire on the user the same way it would an esper of fragment since they have to mentally create the situation in which their powers would work via their concentration. Ultimately if the brain is affected it can render one power unusable.
A voice spoke" what do we do now?" the voice came form a man that was in between the aisle of food and kitchen supplies.
The answer came from the man sitting on the counter.
"Think?" said the man at the door. "It was your recklessness that got us into this and now you want to us to think, how the hell are we suppose to combat a system design to handle reality warpers"
"We point out the flaw within the system"
"Flaw? What flaw?"
"Please this is New York City those robots were built by the city. There is no way in hell the have a flaw that we can exploit". the man sounded desperate trying to figure out the situation.
"It simple really: We asses the situation from a neutral point-"
"And then what? the man at the door cut him off.
"If you would let me finished I was getting to my point, we look at what there and what isn't there then we move on from there"
The man on the counter sighed in disbelief at that statement. What he was imposing was a plan that would get rid of the problem approaching the corner store. To the other four men in the room his plan sounded crazy. A flaw in a system that was created to handle New York City super powered population. It sounded far fetched due to none of the five men had any powers themselves.
What hope did they have?
"Aright listen up" was all that he manage to say before he started speaking again.
"According to the official citywide report that was released a few months ago when the robots were first being introduce to the New York City public, they were label as ARCH_ANGEL_Beta Versions for something bigger. So one can assumed that they are still beta versions with only 263 that was produced"
"Alright" the man at the door spoke "If they are beta version what difference does that make?"
"You don't understand how software releases work don't you?. There are four stages to how software is released and no matter how great or advanced the technology of the city is, it not going to take a big risk of it not working, especially New York City"
Everything was quiet.
"First stage: The Pre-Alpha Phase: The information gathering stage, the charts, the hypothetical, the statistics and so on. New York City Power Development and Regulation Program, a city wide program in which New York City help develop powers through both scientific and magical means such as spellcasters and espers, and it help regulate those that are born with there powers such as fragments and wizards, because the city is so close with the help the development ones powers, the person powers would be added to the Ability Registry List. From there the city always knows who have what powers and how there powers can be used, the more powers the city can produce the more information it can gather for the robots"
The man on the counter slightly moved around a bit.
"Next stage would be the Alpha Phase: With all the information gather from the Ability Registry List New York City can produce the robots, the main function of this part is to test the core functionality, to see if it works as intended. This phase would include a bunch of bugs, but as long as it passes the bare minimum then the city cannot label it a complete failure as it expected to fail. Then would be the stage we are at now: The Beta Testing Stage, this stage the program is released to the public to see how it would function in an open testing environment to see what it can improve on. This is were we exploit the flaw in system"
The man at the door peaked outside the window and saw the ARCH_ANGEL_Beta robot coming.
"So how do we exploit that flaw?"
"Compare the beta version to the other robots that monitor and maintain the city it obvious that anyone can see the difference between the
ARCH_ANGEL_Beta and the 20000 ANGEL_LINE Helper robots that was mass produced and still being mass produce. For one consider there numbers for dealing with the situation across the city, because the ANGEL_LINE robots generally fall under the GUARDIAN_ANGEL Security system their main order never deviate from the main security system objective: To maintain order and protect the city. That why it is not odd to see multiple ANGEL_LINE robots attending to the same problem across the city, raging from a few to a dozen on the same problem because they are all linked up to each other. If a problem exist GUARDIAN_ANGEL will see to it that it get erased"
The man leaped off the store counter.
"So the flaw we exploit is the ARCH_ANGEL_Beta lack of numbers. The ANGEL_LINE robots are scattered across the city, they are within signal range of each other and are always linked up to the GUARDIAN_ANGEL system for better efficiency. The ARCH_ANGEL_Beta may not be linked to that same system"
"How would you know that?"
"Think about it, no matter how you look at it is impossible for a machine to have that many functions without it overloading and breaking down. Example, on any device you have if you were to run many applications and programs in the background your device will slow down, that why there are so many of the ANGEL_LINE robots running about, there are the robots that maintain order. In order to attend to every need of the user-sacrifices must be made. The computer will sacrifice speed for functionality of all the programs the same applies here. The robots cannot have both orders to maintain order of New York City and be ready to combat the super powered population if they need to; it has to be split up"
"So I will ask again, How do we exploit the flaw?" the man at the door said.
"I said we look at what there and what is not there we would be able to exploit the flaw. All the robots in the city have a wireless transmitter attached to them; so that there always in range with each other, my guess is that so the city monitor everything that occurs and handle everything within the city. With each signal bouncing off each ANGEL_LINE robots like a cell tower that how there are able to respond to every situation across the city. If we assume that the ARCH_ANGEL_Betas are not linked up to to the GUARDIAN_ANGEL security system and are in limited numbers then there is a strong possibility we can get what we came for and leave?"
"So how do we do it?"
"With this" as the man held the gun in his hand.
The sound came from a robot.
New York City answer to handle the growing population of reality warpers.
It stood on the street trying access the situation.
"ARCH_ANGEL_Beta model number 105" it voice was robotic in nature "accessing the situation"
The robot was small in stature.
It was coated in the city's colors: white.
It looked like nothing more than a movable trash can with wheels, but because of it appearance one wouldn't guess that it was capable of talking down low to mid level reality warpers.
"The time is 6: 51 A.M. exactly five minutes ago at 6:46 A.M. several gunshots were fire in a three-block radius, accessing the situation" the robot spoke.
"Activating Range Electronic Scan", and with the robot hacked into all electronic within a given range.
"Let just hope this works" a voice came out from the roof the neighboring buildings outside the corner store"
The sun was rising.
The day began to rise in New York City.
-Five Minutes Earlier-
Inside the store.
"Are you insane, how the hell is a gun suppose to fix this?"!
Inside the corner store a voice broke out.
The man held the gun in his hand and began to speak "Yes,but we are not shooting it were are going to throw off the calculations. GUARDIAN_ANGEL is more than a security system it almost an entity by it own right. It main objective is to maintain order in New York City. The security system is linked up to the HEAVEN_SATELLITE above New York City to monitor. With one huge system like that, with other smaller systems spread out"
"You said that ARCH_ANGEL_Betas are not linked up to GUARDIAN_ANGEL so your changing everything now"
"Yes, I said that, but I never said that they did not follow the same guidelines. If they are linked up to another source they would follow the same rules, but with different agendas. By using the HEAVEN_SATELLITE which monitors the city 24-hours a day the ANGEL_LINE is able to gather information it needs, it probably works in reverse too with each ANGEL_LINE robots send the satellite information as well. Since we can only speculate that how it would work. If that true how would limited ARCH_ANGEL_Betas gather information?, by it surroundings"
In the horizon the sun was about to rise.
It was about to be morning.
"If that is true, we can assume that the ARCH_ANGEL_Betas can act independently within a limited range before it has to link up to information source again. Like who a bat who uses sonar waves to determine it surroundings. GUARDIAN_ANGEL existence is a huge A.I. one that require the of many lesser robots as eyes and ears for it to work. If the ARCH_ANGEL_Betas follow the same pattern, then there has to be a system which oversee the ARCH_ANGEL_Betas, with the ARCH_ANGEL_Betas acting for something bigger. Because it uses it surrounding to gather information, if we were to provide it with a sound, we can turn that advantage into a disadvantage"
"It like Bluetooth, the robots emit a signal, like a radar, my guess is that every electronically object would be able to connect to it such as cameras, light signals, and etc. By using that signal, it serves as it eyes and ears. Were going to use this gun to create a sound"
"A loud sound such as that would give our location away"
"Not if we muffle it"
"You completely can't muffle a gunshot"
"That the goal, the robot knows that there is a gun, hiding it now won't make a difference. Since there is only one we can handle this". The man began to walk down a aisle of cans and bottles. He grab a 20 oz. soda bottle. The man open the bottle and pored out the contents on the floor.
The sound of liquid pattering one the floor became obvious to everyone in the room.
The man walked backed to the store counter and started going through several drawers, after searching for a while, pulled out a roll of duct tape. "When the ARCH_ANGEL_Beta is in range I am going to fire the gun, a couple shots should be enough". The man unloaded the magazine from the small handgun and placed it on the store counter. The man placed the 20 oz. bottle on the muzzle of the gun and began to tape the bottle to the muzzle. "The bottle will act as a silencer to 'somewhat' silence the shots I am going to fire into the air"
"The ARCH_ANGEL_Betas can use other machines including itself as it an extension of it eyes and ears. My guess is that makeshift weapon to fool the machine"
"Yup, the plan is to use this so the ARCH_ANGEL_Beta can't pinpoint our exact and it will give a false one in return. All I would have to do is fire and and this makeshift silencer throw off our location". The man began to walk towards a door that would lead up to the roof. "We are risking a lot on the one chance that this might work, so if you want to leave before the robot comes now your chance"
The was silence in the room.
With that the man placed his hand on the door knob and opened the door. The man headed up the stairs.
The was a loud thud as the man slammed his foot on the edge of the roof.
From his vantage point he could see the ARCH_ANGEL_Beta robot approaching.
He had to time this right.
The ARCH_ANGEL_Betas did not just rush blindly into every situation.
They had to access the situation, then they would choose the best method to act given what situation is presented to them.
The man stood on top of the roof watching the robot, like a owl watching a rodent from a tree in a distance.
Choosing his best moment to attack.
The robot was the man prey.
He had to time this right.
In his hand was a small handgun, attached to the was a makeshift silencer made out of a 20 oz. soda bottle and tape.
The plan was simple.
The ARCH_ANGEL_Betas robots would use a signal, to search for any available electronics. It could hack into any security services.
He had to time this right.
The robot appeared moved in front of the store.
Suddenly there was silence.
The calm before the storm.
Everything was quiet.
The man stood atop of the store lying in wait watching from above.
Like one of the big cats in the wild who would sit and wait in the cover of grass, watching it prey at the lake drinking water, waiting for the one moment to strike.
Waiting for the moment it was at it most vulnerable.
The moment were it's guard was down.
The man on the roof inched forward.
Weapon in hand.
If the lion attacked to early or was spotted, the prey would run. Chase would definitely give. Normally this would not mean much to a lion or any big cat due to the face that they were some of the fastest land runners in the wild, but just because you were fast did not mean you would catch your prey. Some animals would fight back. In one case a zebra being chased used it hind legs to attacked the chasing lioness and it would escape.
Worst case scenario if the big cat failed to catch it prey it would most likely go hungry. If he failed the man on the roof would not get a second chance. The robot would use that High Pitch Frequency to disarm them till the proper authority came and apprehended them. Since Fragments, Esper, Magicians, and Spellcasters are all human, ordinary humans with no powers would still succumb to the effect.
Everything was silent.
The robot was standing outside the corner store.
Inside the store tension was high.
The large man leaned heavily on the wall. Everyone in the room was well hidden behind food shelves. waiting for the man above to strike. The large man face fogged up the glass as he peaked a look out the window and saw the robot.
The large man was anxious. The tension was killing him.
Without that wall in between them, the man would be at least a foot away. Staring face-to-face at each other, man and machine.
The man on the roof never losing focus on its prey.
One moment would decide it all.
The air began to pick up.
The man on the roof began to move his index finger on and off the trigger of the gun, slowly playing with it. He knew when the moment presented itself he would have to act.
With all the tension in the air it was truly the calm before the storm. The silence. The moment were everything was on the line. The moment that would decide victors and losers.
The final basketball shot to any tied playoffs game.
The 50-yard field goal during the last few seconds of the Superbowl, were the kicking team decide to risk everything on one kick.
In any other situation the crowd would be screaming and cheering, but it was silent.
You can train your whole life. Spend every moment going over different scenarios in your head, but nothing in life could prepare you for a moment like this.
The tension was high.
The man on the roof was sweating as he watched from above.
The large man was breathing heavily as he watched from inside the corner store.
In one moment he knew that everything would change.
Everything was silent.
The man closed his eyes in an attempt to relax himself.
The man on the roof heart skipped a beat as he heard the sound. It broke him from is tense concentration. He know that he attacked early everything was lost.
The large man in the corner store tried to slow his breathing down as he heard the sound coming from the robot. At any given moment everything would change.
"ARCH_ANGEL_Beta model number 105 accessing the situation"
The man on the roof slowly placed his index finger on the handgun.
The robot spoke again "Activating Signal Scan"
His hands were trembling. His finger was sweaty, despite the fact that he fired several shots inside the corner store he was on the roof trembling. Their whole plan rested on the man on the roof.
Then there was a sound.
The sound broke through the quietness.
The man on the roof reacted.
It must have been for a second, but the man reacted.
The man opened his eyes quickly and with that he raised his left arm, in the hand of the left arm was the small handgun with a makeshift plastic bottle silencer to the point that it was pointed to the sky above.
His finger was on the trigger.
The man used his right arm to cover his ear.
It must have been for a second, but the man press down on the trigger. His finger felt heavy as he fire the one shot that rip through the daybreak sky of New York City. The sound was very light, it almost did not sound like a gunshot. It sounded more like a pop.
Inside the corner store, the large man had heard the light gunshot.
(That the gunshot) The large man thought to himself. The ARCH_ANGEL_Beta would pick up the faint gunshot sound through it scanner and began to react.
The large man quickly closed his eyes shut, he did not want to see how the robot would act.
On the roof the man the man was adjusting himself.
He looked at the handgun in his hand, the soda bottle silencer was destroyed. The bullet had shot straight through.
The bottom half was mostly gone. It served it purpose.
The man on the roof looked down off the roof and watched how the robot would react.
"Processing result of Signal Scan"
The robot broke through the quiet tension with it voice.
The man on the rood watched and listened.
Everything rest on the man plan to get rid of the robot.
The man watched.
The robot started to light up in various places.
"Relaying information...Beep...Relaying information to nearest source to bounce of relay point"
The large man in the corner store began to squeeze his eyes shut as he hope that the plan would work.
On the roof the man began taking apart the makeshift silencer made from a 20 oz. soda bottle from the gun as he watched how the machine would react.
His gaze never leaving.
"Report on the situation" the robot spoke. "Report on signal scan that was conducted at approximately 7:02 A.M. on Thursday May, 28 2009 in response to several gunshots. Signal Scan picked up one single faint gunshot. Signal scan was unable to pinpoint the exact location of the gunshot"
Suddenly the machine moved on.
The man on the roof was surprised.
There was no words to describe what the man on the roof was feeling.
The man was a whirlwind of emotions.
One emotion was excitement: That the plan had work.
Another emotion was shock and disbelief: That the plan "had" work.
The plan was down-right ridiculous.
The actual percentage that the plan would work wasn't high that they would risk there freedom on the slim chance that it would work. But the men had to take the risk. All or nothing, was the situation that the men were presented with.
They had to take it and it work.
Now there were in the clear.
The situation has change.
Inside the corner store the large man opened his eyes, because his eyes were shut everything was blurry. It took a while for the blurriness to wear off, but when it did the large man did not see the robot outside.
The large man sighed heavily as he slid down the wall.
"It worked, the plan worked"
The man was relieved.
He began to looked around the corner store. As he looked, he spotted a a small wine cellar. He picked himself up of the floor and headed for the cellar.
The sound of the door on the roof opened.
The man started headed downstairs to meet the others.
Step by step he headed downstairs.
As he reached the bottom of the stairs he stopped at the door.
He stood there.
(I guess we can get what we came for and leave without a problem).
With that the man opened the door and walked in on a unsuspecting sight.
The sound of glass bottles hit with a clang.
The four men inside the room was drinking.
The man sighed in disbelief.
"What the hell, what the hell?"
One of the men tossed him a wine bottle. He caught it with his left hand, as his right was carrying the gun.
"We are already drinking?"
"Hey, it's noon somewhere.
"Yeah, after what happened out there we need a drink. Wouldn't you agree?"
The man looked at the label on the wine bottle, the language on the label was in German.
"You know that imported wine is the most expensive"
"At almost fifteen grand at bottle I'd better be pissing out gold"
The man broke the tip of the wine bottle on the wall, then he drunk from the broken top. He almost gagged as he swallowed the wine.
"Damn this crap is terrible" the man spouted as he was wiping his mouth. "Well if your done playing around we have something important to do"
"Yeah, yeah lets get to it"
The large man headed out the door for guard duty. Since the day was about to began a lot if the students would stop off at the various corner store across the city for breakfast or to drop off there electronics.
Suddenly there was a whimper.
The sound came from a child.
A small girl.
The girl was tied up with rope and her mouth was taped. On her right was her mother and her left was her father. All three were in the same situation bound in gagged.
To the small girl she had no idea why the five men in the corner store were there, but the parents knew all to well.
The men in the store were going to rob it.
"Awwww and we were having so much fun"
The man began to walk up to the the tied up family and knelled in front of the girl.
"You remembered what I said before this whole ordeal, you guys stay quiet and there no one would get hurt right?"
The mother had tried here best to get in between the man and her child, but to a failed effort as she could not freely move the way she wanted to.
The father tried to move to the best of his ability but there was a sound that made even the strongest stop in his tracks.
The parents eyes opened in shock at what they were looking.
The man had pointed the handgun at their daughter forehead.
It was a sight no parent ever should have to see.
The parent tried to move but they couldn't. They were right next to her, literally leaning on here and they could not do a thing.
The girl looked at the gun pointed at her forehead. In her young life she had never seen a gun due to New York City strict ban on illegal weapons. She did not now how to react.
The gun was pointed at her forehead.
The father tried his best to free himself. His hand and legs were tied with plastic anti-riot nylon handcuffs.
He attempted to pulled his hands apart thus breaking the cuffs, but as he did the cuffs would seep in to his skin. The pain was unbearable as it was, it felt the man hands were being slowly cut off. He couldn't see it, but his wrist were bleeding.
But he had to bear the pain. Inch by inch. He felt angry as he watched the man point the gun at his daughter forehead.
If he had one chance the man would rip them apart and beat them to the ground, all of them. Even if had to cut off his own hands to do so, he would risk his own well being to protect his family.
The father continued to struggle.
The man smirked as he released the father had attempted to free himself. He slowly removed the gun from the girl forehead.
The father did not have time to react as the gun was now pointed on himself.
The sound rip through the air.
The man had shot a bullet right through the father shoulder.
The room was filled a muffled scream.
"I sorry, it just that I was watching you struggle and I could not help myself".
The man continued to scream among the pain.
"Do you feel it, to be helpless, to be at the bottom at of the food chain, to know that you can't not do anything. Tough feeling?"
The father laid there in agony.
The pointed the gun at the mother and spoke as blood poured out of his shoulder.
"Do you wanna be next?"
The mother looked down in defeat.
There was nothing that she could do to help the situation. If she did anything she would end up in the same situation as her husband, and that would have not help their daughter.
There was nothing that she could do.
She sat there helplessly.
"Do you see it now, what this city is doing to us?" the man said in a calm voice. "Under the pretense of bettering ourselves, this city that we call home only exist for the strong. You can earn a great living if you are born with or develop a great power that is useful to the city in whatever their goal is"
The mother raised her head to look at the man kneeling in front of them.
"You know the funny thing is that no matter the level of their ability, they are automatically placed above us, it like they are the next stage in humanity. Were are the humans and they are the mutants sorta like the X-MEN. Only the strong survive that the unofficial motto of the city so tell me, you probably guess by now that we don't have any powers if we did this would have gone allot smoother.
With that sentence the woman began to feel anger swell up inside her.
"We are a small gang of those that did not have the natural talents or could develop them we decided to form a group that would eventually outnumber those that did have powers"
The woman had an worried look on her face.
"Oh you want to say something"
The man slowly reached his hand to her face and pull the tape off her mouth.
The woman spoke "If that is your goal th-then why attack, why rob us?". The woman wanted answers.
The man sighed.
"You see the plan sounded good on paper, it happens in nature were hundreds of ants would overpower and grasshopper or a praying mantis. It all about numbers and how they were used. That were we messed up big time, see given the right situation it is easy to outnumber and overpower someone. The problem was the prey itself, we jumped the shark on that one and went after who ever. The situation had change and the gap of power between us was larger than we ever had imagine. It wasn't ants and grasshoppers anymore, it was dragons and ants"
The man pulled up his sleeves and then he lifted his shirt.
The woman eyes widen as she seen the various scars.
"Yeah it hurt like a bitch, despite the ugly scars I'm one of the lucky ones. My section of our gang only focused on low level reality warpers, but what we had in numbers they had in power and eventually even their weakest was enough to over power us in the dozens. There are other sections that attempts to take on the strongest bunch of reality warpers"
The man chuckled.
"Damn idiots, who the hell chose to fight against those that wipe out an entire city with a thought or a wave of their hand. Some of them lost their limbs and some died, they don't even get mentioned but what can anyone say Today several people was critically injured after attempting gang up on a single reality warper"
The man lowered his sleeves and began to stand up.
"The funny thing is when this is all over and both sides part ways, we are left injured and barely alive we are looked at as the victims. I mean it one thing to get over looked by the city, but to be humiliated like that when we are supposed to be the aggressors that was the final straw"
The woman began to realize something.
Their plan was, their whole ideology was ridiculous. Ordinary humans taking on reality warpers, there was not a single way they can win. Unless a miracle happened and the odds was heavily in their favor the hope of actually beating them was out of reach.
The woman narrowed her eyes on the gun in the man's hand.
It was truly survival of the fittest or survival of those that can adapt. Evolution at its finest, as the world expanded new threats emerge. The weak have always been prey to animals that were faster, stronger, more agile so they created weapons to combat them. As time went on the threats became more resilient and weapons became more dangerous to use in combat having gone through multiple upgrades in the following centuries.
The woman looked at the handgun in the man hand, it was a practical weapon. It was small but effective. In a robbery all one would have to do was wave a gun around and the victim would become very reliant.
The woman began realize something else.
The idea of using a gun would be useless against reality warpers due to the fact that their powers exist to challenge and in some cases ignore in laws of physics.
(The money) the woman thought to herself. She had had assume that they where here for, But during the whole ordeal not one of the men asked for the money or any money at all. The woman focused on the weapons in the men hands, the man were is possession of weapons that a normal gang would have such as gun and baseball bats.
The woman began to think.
There was no way that normal weapons could handle reality warpers, the only chance they had were to upgrade the weapons they were in possession of. Since New York City had a ban on illegal fire arms the men would have to smuggle in the weapons and ammo in to the city and the resources to pull that off was not cheap.
(But we don't have much money) the woman thought. She did not say this out loud , if the men found out that they did no have a lot of money there was no telling how they would react. But it was true that the did not have a lot. they owned a small corner store and it only made enough for the family to live on. At the most inside the cash register and the safe there would be less than five grand in total, if any of the men had ask where the money was the woman would have told them. But none of the men had asked.
Their goal was to was to challenge the strongest, with the weapons they had access to the men did not have a chance. There only chance was to even the playing ground, if the gang had more money they could afford better weapons. The woman started the realize the robbery part of their plan, in order to support their group they would need the money to do so. Since the group was made of of humans with no powers, from the city they would received the bare minimum in income which was enough to live on so the goal was money.
But none of the men in the store had asked for the money.
(There goal was something else) The woman thought.
She had assume that the gang would rob small corner stores avoiding the larger scale robberies to stay under the radar from local authorities, but they could not multiple stores in rapid secession of each other without tipping of the authorities.
With enough resources one can challenge the strongest, and resources cost money. Since none of the men had ask for any money, they could not get the funds for the resources that they need, and since they did not have the resources they need they could not challenge the strongest.
Once the woman came to that final conclusion she raised her head and in her eyes was anger. She spoke "What are you here for? you did not come for the money why are you here? You ambushed us and shot my husband, WHAT THE HELL COULD YOU POSSIBLY WANT?!". She yelled at the men.
The man turned around.
"I told didn't I you that my section of the group handle low level reality warpers, after multiple attempt we realized that we had no chance of ever winning. So my section decided to do things a little differently"
The man walk to the tied up family.
"There a law of nature in which everything relies on one another for balance. One species is prey to another, while the same species that preyed upon them is prey to another. Its a perfect system of predator and prey out there. If one species fall out of place then the whole system collapses on itself"
Slowly the began to understand what the man was saying.
"We also understood something else as well"
(They were not here for the money we had).
"What we learned was simple and that was..."
(They stopped aiming high due to the fact that they could win against those who are stronger).
"Despite how big the list was, no matter what your place was in that list..."
(And when they could not get any higher they...)
"There was always someone that was weaker than you, someone who was beneath you on that list"
(Choose to target those weaker than them, those that could not fight back).
The situation was clear to her now. The reason they were targeted was because they were weaker. the people in the room had no powers what so ever but because the gang have weapons they were stronger.
"To tell you the truth I was quite relieve when I came to that conclusion. I could take the humiliation of those that looked down upon me, as long I could give that same feeling to those below me. Now knowing that what could you do but sit there?"
There was loud sound that startle everyone in the room.
The sound of broken glass filled the room.
Something heavy was dropped on to the floor.
The man began to slowly walked toward the source of the sound. He stop when he saw the large man on the floor beaten and bruised.
The next sound to follow was the footsteps getting closer to the front door.
The sound of broken glass echoed through the small corner store.
Suddenly the was ding from the bell as the corner store door opened.
Everyone's eyes focused on the door as it opened.
The door fully opened.
In a situation like this, a robbery in the moment where thing seem there darkest, there was a person who stood at door. After the incident outside the person at the door had beat down the large man one lookout.
The person was clearly the enemy to the four men dressed in black in the corner store.
To the woman tied up on the floor, the person at the door was a single glimpse of hope.
The person took a step into the store.
Everyone eyes focused on the door.
To take down a large man one would have be large if not larger then the said man.
The person that stepped through the door was a child.
After several steps inside the store the child was completely in the store, and with that disbelief fill the room.
The boy had long messy black hair with several bangs covering his eyes. He was dressed in a dark blue leather jacket. The jacket had a grey star at the center with three rolls of grey lines, with the second roll extending past the shoulder area. Unknowing to everyone in the room, the boy was wearing the leather jacket from the CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER movie as a little gift to himself. He was wearing black pants and red and white converse. On his back was a large black back-pack.
(A back-pack, a student) the man thought.
In short, he did not look like someone who could have taken down the large man.
The boy stood there.
"Ha you almost had me worried for a moment"
The man walked toward the boy gun in hand.
The man had was a few inches taller than than the boy. The boy looked up, his light blue eyes peaked though the bangs covering them. He had bags under his eyes from just waking up. There stood there in front of each other.
The man grabbed the boy's leather jacket.
"So what can you do?"
With the tip of this shoe the boy had kicked the man in the knee, the man leg jerked as he lost his balance and landed on hand and knees.
The man looked and was pissed.
"You little bastar-"
His sentence was cut was cut off as the boy had kicked the man in the face. The man fell back on top of a can of towers.
The man staggered attempted to get himself up, but struggled.
Everyone in the room watched the whole ordeal unfold. The man, with his nose bleeding looked at his crew members and brought his hand to his nose.
"What the hell are you waiting for? an innovation GET HIM!"
The three men began to converge towards his location, since the men had outnumbered the boy 4 to 1, so taking them on all together was out of the question since he could see that the men had weapons.
His best chance at staying alive was to take them individually.
The boy had yawned as he placed his hand on his head and closed his eyes.
(The one time I try to go to school early and I walk in on whatever the hell this is. I mean sure I have been late to high school every day of the known school year, but no one ever got hurt over it).
Since they men were wearing boots, the boy had heard their footsteps getting closer and closer.
(Well, this is the last time I listen to someone).
The boy opened his eyes, lowered his hand to his side and smirked.
The boy quickly adjusted his eyesight on the person running towards him, an object in the man hand right hand reflected of the ceiling light. The boy could see the glare.
If one could take down someone with their bare hand, they would not need a weapon. Since the boy could see the weapon, all he would have to do was focus not only on the weapon but the part holding the weapon: the arm.
With both hands the boy had grabbed the man right arm and kneed the man in his stomach. With his right arm the boy elbowed the man on the side of his head. By sliding his forward foot across the floor and knocking the man off balance, the boy had grabbed a handful of the man hair and slammed the man head face first on to the ground.
Blood was pouring from the man skull as it hit the ground. The man was unconscious. The boy looked up and saw the other two men coming. The first of the two men had grabbed the boy by the collar of his leather jacket.
(Seriously what the hell? why do they keep grabbing the jacket?)
The boy was being pushed back, the man was not that large but very muscular so he had out powered the boy. The muscular man was pushing the boy toward a wall, the boy knew that because of his size that if the man had against the wall the whole fight would be over. In Mixed Martial Arts there is a fighting style call "Ground and Pound" in which one fighter would take down the opponent and hit him or her with a barrage of punches, forearm strikes and elbows hits. This is usually the match enders to most fights, due to the continuous barrage of attacks and even if one were to block the hits it would be useless as the blocking party get worn out by the hits. This style is mostly by the heavyweight class because of there size.
In a MMA fight the referee would stop the match, but there was no referee to stop the match. The only way the match would end was with whoever was left standing and walked out the store alive. The boy had grabbed the man arm, and let himself fall back. Since he could not overpower the man he would use the man own size and strength against him. He fell on the floor and raised his leg to catch the man as he fell on top of him and pushed the man head first into a wall.
The man off of him, as he got up the boy was immediately hit on the side of the arm with a baseball bat.
The boy fell against the wall.
The man swung the bat horizontally, the boy spun around to dodge the hit of the bat. Since the bat was a weapon that was extension of one self the boy had to keep his distance to avoid being hit.
The man tried to close the gap between them and began to swing wildly in an attempt to hit the boy.
The boy dodge the hits by spinning around, ducking and rolling around the area the man had cornered the boy into.
The boy knew that he could not kept this up forever, as he would tire himself out.
The boy need to get the man into a small area one where he could not swing the bat around wildly.
The sound of broken glass had filled the room as the man began to hit various objects to get to the boy.
As the man swung the bat to the boy mid-section the had raised his left arm to catch the bat. The bat had hit the boy in the waist as he caught it, it took everything for the boy not to roll over in pain.
Now holding on to the bat in between his arm and waist, the boy had punched the man in the nose, he was hoping that the punch would cause the man to lose his hold of the bat.
The boy kept punching his face.
The boy tightened his hold of the bat and swung the man around in to a corner.
The man had hit the boy in the ribs with the butt of the bat. The boy had kneed over and the man had kneed him in the face to get the boy in a standing position, one where he could hit the boy in the head with the bat.
The man had swung the bat in a horizontal direction, the boy ducked and spun around the man. The boy had preformed a backwards leg sweep to trip the man. On the floor the man had swung the bat catching the boy on the side of his knee.
As the boy fell down the man was back to his feet trying to kick the boy head off.
The boy had rolled out of the way to create some distance between them.
Fighting him head is a terrible mistake, he had to think of something.
The boy started to run.
He was not surrendering, but to find a closed environment to fight. Inside the store the boy ran towards a small corner. It was not big, but one would not be to swing a bat freely. A glass bottle was thrown at the boy and he barely manage to dodge it.
The man came running towards the boy.
The boy breathed, as he began to get himself ready for this close quarter combat session.
As soon as the man was in range the boy had grabbed the man shirt collar and threw him into a corner of pipes.
The boy had combo'ed the man with punches and jabs. The man had pushed the boy away with is foot causing the boy to fall back on to the floor. The man had swung the bat downwards in a attempt to hit the boy.
The bat had hit something, it was not the boy but the bat had hit something.
The way the man had swung the bat, caused it to get stuck in between the row of pipes attached to ceiling.
The boy had smirked.
The man was trying to free the bat from the ceiling.
Wasting no time, the boy stumbled to his feet and started to chuckle to himself.
"Well what do we have here? it look like the situation has been reverse"
"Wha-" The man was cut by the boy fist slamming into his face.
The man had fell down to the floor, and did not move.
The sound of the boy panting filled the room, the boy begin to walk out of the room, holding his arm panting.
Someone had yelled out, following the yell was the scream of a woman.
Standing there was was the man with the gun, and in his arm was the woman he had taken hostage as he was holding a gun to her head.
"Don't move!" the man had yelled to the boy as he stepped out of the small room.
"Your power explain it now"
"What makes you think I have a power?"
"Wha-what are you talking about? you took down my men with little effort, you must have a power. With the way you fought and man handled my men in hand to hand combat precognition or telepathic perception ability. So which is it?"
The boy place his on this side of his head.
"Precognition or telepathic perception. Two interesting abilities, but it won't do much in a life or death situation. Precognition is the ability to foresee future events and telepathic perception is the ability to read another thoughts"
"What are you going on about?"
"Oh nothing really, it just that you motioned some interesting theories about me having a power. So I will entertain you, let say that I did have a precognition ability. To some the ability to see in to the future does really does seem cool but you can't choose which vision you would get to see, it can be good or bad and the vision you can only make a choice"
The boy snapped his fingers.
"Case in point, if you knew about event that would happen depending on the vision itself you only given two choices: To change it or To accept it. Say that one want to change their 'fate' it wouldn't be that easy because you don't know how to prepare for for that said event. The same can be said for a person with telepathic perception abilities, sure by reading ones mind is great and all, in a fight it would allow you to dodge an attack, but if you don't know how to dodge then it pointless it more than just moving out of the away you would have to train your body and mind for something like that"
"What are you saying?"
"You asked if I had an ability like that, it is logical that I would but, I have to say I don't have neither, well let me rephrase that I don't have any ability of the sort"
The man could not process the boy answer.
"But your fighting ability"
"You talked about ability during a life or death situation you mean to tell me that you took the time to learn you to fight, what good is your fighting skill against reality warpers? if any thing that would make you a hypocrite"
"I am not being a hypocrite, Just saying that those two abilities would be useless in a fight. One the other hand with hand-to-hand combat you can at least sway the battle in your favor"
"Then join us"
"Hear me out, according to the city someone of your non existent level of power is not even worth mentioning so your only logical choice is to join someone who is the same as you. Gangs start out when society treats them like crap and then they try to justify their existence, surely you must have felt the injustice this city dished out to us, would it not feel great to dish out this same feeling to those lesser than you?"
The boy looked down.
"I am the same as you guys I have no power to show there is no lies about that, except that I don't go around waving a gun at people in a poor attempt to justify my existence. Don't you ever in your pathetic excuse for a life that you have ever compare me to you"
The boy raised his head, his eyes was now focused. He placed his right thumb to the center of his chest.
"I might be weak compared to the overpowered reality warpers but I still have my pride as a nobody"
The man was surprised by the boys answer.
"That is your answer boy?"
"Of course and I don't regret. I accept my fate"
The raised his arm to point the gun at the boy.
"Accepting your fate is just the same as giving up so if I may, allow me to cement your legacy"
The gun was now set on the boy.
Despite how good is hand-to-hand combat was there was no way he could out run a bullet, especially in a small space.
"Do not blame me for your death kid, blame yourself for your own weakness. I will give you credit, despite your weakness you tried your best to save this family, but it seems that fate is smiling down upon me.
As the man said that the man that the boy slammed in to the wall began to come to his feet. On the other side of the room the man in the small room began to walk out with the bat in hand.
"Lets end this shall we"
In a second the woman had bitten the man hand.
The man had let you a scream and with that the situation in the room had change.
"You little bitc-"
The man was cut off by the boy punching the man in the face.
The man fell back on the wall. The boy had ran up to the man and with his foot he kicked the gun with out of his hands.
The man grabbed the boy and threw him in to the wine cellar.
The man rushed in.
As the man entered he attempted to punch the boy, his arm was grabbed and the man was spun around until he hit a wall.
The sound of wine bottles crashing on to the floor filled the entire room.
The man swung his right arm and the boy blocked with his left arm. The boy started to repeatedly to punch the man in the gut. The boy elbowed the man in his face.
The voice surprised the boy.
The boy turned around and saw a man running towards him.
He sighed as he let the man he was attacking fall over.
He walked down the wine cellar towards the approaching man. The man attempted to punch the boy with his right hand, the boy ducked and spun around a full 360 to kick the man in his gut. As the man knelled over, the boy slammed his right elbow into the man face.
Soon after the man with the bat came rushing in the room ready to swing.
The boy began to pick himself up.
While running the man swung the bat left, the boy dodge the hit by ducking. With his left elbow the boy hit the man in the back of his head, causing him onto slump over the glass.
Suddenly the boy was caught in a reverse bear hug grapple.
"Da-Damnit" The boy said trying to free himself.
The boy was picked up off the ground.
Struggling the boy placed his foot on the glass wall of the cellar and pushed himself back, causing the man to crash in to rows of wine bottles. Pressed up against the wall the boy slammed the back of his head in to the man nose.
"Ugh you little bastard" the man said as he tighten his grip on the boy.
Still off his feet the boy bend his leg to attack the man groin. The man had release grip on the boy a little, enough for him to slip through the man arms
Still facing the opposite direction of the man the boy grabbed the back of the man head and jumped in to the air and kicked the other man pressed against the glass wall in the face.
As the boy landed back on his feet, he elbowed the man behind him in the gut repeatedly and elbowed the in the chin.
The man with the metal bat swung low in an attempt to hit the boy leg, the boy raised his left leg to dodge the swing. As he did the boy kicked the man in the side of his face.
The boy yanked the man up by his collar and spun him around so that he was lined up with the man pressed against the glass wall.
The boy placed his foot on the man stomach and with all his weight tried to push the two men through the glass wall-
But to no avail.
Instead the boy was pushed back in to the wall behind him, bumping into the wine bottle hanging on the rack causing the bottles to fall crashing on to him and the floor.
Leaned up against the wall the boy ran towards the two men. It was not a long run since the room was not very large, halfway in to the run the boy leaped forward in to the air and rammed his knee in to the man face.
The glass wall behind the two men shattered at the force of the attack, both men fell to the floor. The men were knocked out by the attack as they were laying across the floor.
The boy stood there has he tried to catch his breath.
The voice came from the from the mother.
But the boy couldn't react to the sound as he was tackled to the ground by the leader.
The was a loud thud as he was slammed in to the ground. The leader grabbed the boy jacket collar and punched him in the jaw.
"I just want you to know kid that this ain't personal"
With that statement the leader began to strangle the boy. The wine cellar became filled with gasping sounds as the boy struggled to breathe. As he was clawing and scratching at the man hands.
Struggling on the floor, the boy began sliding his hand cross the floor and cutting his hand due to the broken shards of glass on the floor.
Without the boy looking he grabbed a long broken shard of glass, and without a second thought the boy stabbed the man shoulder. There was a slight twitch in the man upper body as the man removed his hand from the boy throat. The boy started taking deep breaths. As the the man attempted to pulled the glass shard out of his shoulder, the boy grabbed the man jacket collar and head-butted the man in the nose.
"GAHHHHH" the man said as he backed up, he nose bleeding.
With his foot, the boy push his the glass shared deep in to the shoulder and with his other foot the boy pushed the man by kicking him in the chest. Both men had rolled away to the opposite side of the room.
Both men were panting.
The boy wiped the blood from his lips. The man pulled the glass shard of his shoulder his entire left arm was covered in blood. Slowly the man began to make a fist with his injured arm.
They both look at each other.
Then it happened-
Both men had ran towards each other. With his right arm the man had swung his arm to punch the boy. The boy duck under to spin around and elbowed the man in his face.
The backed up and stumbled as the boy walked forward.
Both of the men stood there.
The man attempted to kick the boy with his right leg, the boy blocked with his left leg. As there leg met the boy drag his leg down along with the man leg. The boy kicked the man his chest, causing him to stumble back.
The boy then flip, with his foot crashing into the man face.
There was a "Thud" as the man fell to the floor.
The boy looked to man lying out on the floor.
"It kinda feel personal"
The walked away towards the exit of the wine cellar.
This battle was his, this victory was his no one can denied that. He walked out of the hole in the broken glass wall, the sound of glass crunching under his foot fill the room.
Despite still being in the store, if felt like a wave of fresh air hit the boy as he walked out of the cellar. The boy looked around the store.
The store was a mess.
The boy grabbed a water bottle and poured it contents on his cut hand to wash away the blood. He started to lick the remaining blood from his hand.
Still licking his hand, the boy looked over to the family sitting there in the corner.
"Can you please help us?"
As the boy walked over to the family he wrapped a loose rag around his hand and rolled the father on to his back. There was blood pouring out of his shoulder.
"Oh there was something Rei told me to do in this situation...yeah that's it put pressure on the wound"
The boy looked to the mother"
"Alright I am going to get those things of out you so you can put pressure on the wound while I will call for help"
The boy began to look around the room and grabbed a knife that was dropped by one of the men. He walked back to the mother and kneel in front of her.
"Don't try to move alright"
The mother was still visibly shaken up, just a few moments ago she was staring at the end of a gun.
"I am serious, if I cut your wrist you will probably bleed out and die"
There was a silent "snip" as the boy cut the the plastic hand cuffs off the mother arms and ankles, the mother quickly moved to her husband as the boy had cut the plastic cuffs off the daughter.
The mother began to put pressure on the wound.
"Thank you for stopping the men and saving us even though you do not have any powers of your own"
"It's not that I don't have powers of my own, Believe me if I did have any powers of my own I would've still come to save you.
Neo New York City had one goal: To understand the larger universe and in order to do that they would need some one who stood at to top, the strongest. Someone who understood the vast universe and can manipulate it. It was a mad scramble to the top of the throne one could call it a dog eat dog world were everyone looks out for themselves.
"I don't want to hurt anyone. I don't like bullies, I don't care where they are from. I did not train my to hone my martial art skills to beat down bullies that would make me no different from them. I don't want to hurt anyone, I just want to protect people. Sometimes those two inter cross with each other, but since you guys are safe that someone will be able to smile when this is all over. I guess this is what you would say 'The end justify the means' huh?"
"It's alright if I can save others then my fate is unimportant"
The boy looked at clock. It was after seven sense he was a student he had to leave for school. The boy looked to the mother.
"Look unfortunately I can't stay for to long it would be wise for me to call emergency services through a house phone"
"Alright it over there near the register, hang in there sweetie help is on the way"
As the boy reached the store counter the was a several voice that came from the outside the store causing the boy to stop in his tracks.
The mother quickly wave her hands down to here daughter telling her to hide behind the store racks.
"...the hell taking them so long. It was supposed to be a quick job in and out"
"Look the window broken"
"Don't tell me they gotten crazy"
"Lets just head inside to see what the hold up is?"
The boy could heard the voices of multiple men, he looked back to the mother.
"Stay hidden and no matter what do not come out, do not play the hero"
The mother drag her husband into behind some racks.
"That easy for you to say"
"Well I have a plan"
"You have a plan"
"Nnnnnnh I have twelve percent of a plan, if we were counting percentages. Look it does not matter just stay hidden"
There was a 'Ding' from the door bell as it opened and three men dress in black walked in.
"What the fuck happened here?"
The men were looking around at all the damage that was store look like a war-zone.
"What the?" the man in front said as he gaze over to the unconscious bodies of his gang members.
"That would have been me"
The men looked over to the boy.
There he stood by himself.
"You did all this...by yourself?"
"Yeah, but there a lot of feeling swirling around in this room. One one side I am excited that I'd beat down few thugs down, then there is your group who can get beat down by anyone.
The boy was provoking the men.
"I don't know what is worst: to get utterly destroyed by those stronger than you as a whole or to get beat down by those weaker than you. It must hurt doesn't it"
"You know you talk a lot. There is an old saying 'Speech is silver, silence is golden' you might have been able to walk away from this broken but alive but now"
Two of the men began to walk forward to the boy.
The boy smirked.
"Your a lot smarter than the leader sending two men to attack me at the same time, but I doubt that will change anything"
"He believed in survival of the fittest, I myself believe in a different concept"
The was a 'Ding' as the door opened up and several more men walked in eight in total.
"I believe in the only way to do something right is to do it your self"
There was now almost a dozen men in the room, all enemies.
The boy lowered his arms.