There are so many questions in my head right now! Angela stabbed me with a glowing knife. I was almost attacked by some kind of monster before some angel-looking thing saved me. This Natalie girl almost killed me herself, and can turn into some kind of beast. That other girl, Audri, can teleport. Angela can shoot lightning from her fingers, and now they’re telling me that I’m one of them, a kheprian?
“What are you talking about?” I say in a hushed, but panicked tone. “What the hell is this?”
Angela looks at me with gentle eyes.
“We are a race sworn to protect mankind from the dangers of the Ahkashic Realm.” she says.
“The what?” I ask, breathing slowly to try to calm my nerves.
“Ahkashic Realm. It’s basically what some people refer to as the ‘spirit world.’”
Natalie steps forward with an angry glint in her eyes.
“If it weren’t for us, every human in the world would be devoured by Ahkasans, or spirits, as you may know them” she says, a growl in the back of her throat. What did I do to make her so angry?
I grab my hair tightly, nearly ripping it from my head. This is just too much to take in right now! Wait a minute…
“Is that what that thing was? The thing that attacked me?” I ask, bringing my hands down in front of me.
“Yes, it was.” Audri says. “They’re responsible for the people dropping around town. I’m impressed you actually took it out on your own.”
I raise my brows in confusion. Where did they get the idea that I defeated that thing?
“Uh… I didn’t do anything to it. How could I have defeated it?” I ask.
Angela’s eyes widen as she exchanges glances between Natalie and Audri. Natalie looks the most shocked out of the three of them.
“What do you mean you didn’t defeat it?” Natalie yells at me, her eyes starting to glow red. “What was the light?”
I reel back, putting my hands in front of me. This girl has some serious anger problems.
“There was someone else who showed up when that monster attacked me. They took it out, not me.” I say, startled from Natalie’s outburst. I’ve known her for only a few minutes, and she already scares the shit out of me.
Natalie turns to Angela, who has her hand to her chin in thought.
“That isn’t the main priority right now.” she says, “What matters is we get him up to speed..”
I may have known Angela for only a day, but she seems so different now. She seems very serious, and to the point. She’s almost like a different person.
Angela pulls Natalie back from in front of me, and takes a deep breath.
“As I was saying,” she says, “we are kheprians, a race sworn to protect mankind from Ahkasans, beings who cause havoc among humans. We have been doing so since the time of the Pharaohs.”
I perk my head up at Angela’s mention of Pharaohs.
“Since the time of the Pharaohs… are you girls immortal or something?”
Natalie appears in front of me, glaring at me with her crimson orbs, and baring her fangs at me.
“Shut up and listen, and this will go a lot faster.” she growls in my face as I reel back.
“Yes ma’am.” I say with a quiet whimper. What is with this girl? Is anyone here even somewhat normal?
“Natalie… that’s enough.” Angela calls out. Natalie returns to her place beside Angela.
“Anyway, to answer your question, no, we’re aren’t immortal.” Angela continues with her explanation.
“That’s an explanation for another time. As for how we defeat Ahkasans, you’ve already seen what we can do.”
I immediately think of Angela shooting electricity. Natalie going berserk. Audri teleporting.
“Are you saying I have some kind of power, like you three.” I ask with wide eyes.
“Maybe not exactly like us, but we all have abilities of our own.” Audri says from next to me. I jump in surprise, receiving a wink from her as she appears next to Natalie.
My mouth hangs open as I continue to process what these girls have told me. Wait, there’s one thing I still need an answer to.
“That monster, that Ahkasan…” I say quietly, “it said something about me being ‘awakened.’”
Angela looks at me with sad eyes, Natalie gesturing her over to me. She lets out a sigh as she slowly takes a step towards to me.
“Kheprians are born in a dormant state.” she starts, “You see, the powers we have are fueled by our own life force. If we use them carelessly, we become weak. So, in order to stay in fighting shape, we have to siphon the life force of others to fuel ourselves.”
Chills shoot up my spine as I hear the last part of Angela’s explanation. Siphon life force from others! What the hell are these girls? What the hell am I?
“Dormant kheprians need to be awakened to learn to control the abilities, that’s what the knife was for.” Angela continues, “If a kheprian remains dormant, innocent people could die from being drained.”
Innocent people could die? By being drained of their life force? My thoughts immediately turn to the one day I don’t want to remember. Sona’s death.
I ball my hands into fists as I struggle to ask another question.
“What could happen to someone as their being drained?” I ask, my voice starting to choke a little.
“It starts with them losing any sign of emotion.” Natalie explains, “Eventually, they’ll turn slow and lose any sign of vigor they had. If things continue, they will eventually drop dead.”
I grab my hair with tight fingers as I back up towards the wall. I was right! Sona’s death was my fault!
“No…” I whisper as my breathing turns heavy, “no, no, no, no…”
Angela rushes to me, followed by Natalie and Audri, all with frantic looks on their faces. She places a hand on my shoulder as I kneel down, still pulling at my hair.
“Cayne, what’s wrong?” Angela asks in worry.
“It’s my fault. She’s dead because of me.” I whisper, trying to hold back my tears of shock.
I stand up and knock Angela’s hand away from me.
“Cayne, I’m sorry.” she says, “I didn’t know.”
I ball my fists as tight as I can as I close my eyes to regain control of my breathing. My hands suddenly start burning again, but it feels different from when Angela stabbed me. I slowly open my eyes, seeing small flickers of black and red flames crawling over my fingers.
“What the…” I say in shock, looking at Angela and the others. Their wide eyes and open jaws give me a bad feeling about this.
“Wow!” Audri yells, “his ability surfaced already! And it’s awesome!”
I raise my burning hands, staring in awe.
“This… is my power?” I ask.
“Well, obviously.” Natalie says with a groan. Seriously, what did I do to piss her off?
Angela steps back, gazing at the flames covering my hands.
“Impressive,” she says with a hand on her chin. “I didn’t think your ability would surface so soon.”
A small grin appears on my face as I start shaking my hands, trying to put out the fire crawling up my arms.
“While this is kind of cool, how do I put this out?” I ask, shaking my hands even more.
I start to feel dizzy as the fire remains lit on my arms. Audri catches me as I start to stumble to the floor.
“He’s going under!” she yells. “We need to help him!”
Angela rushes over, and places her hand on my chest. Her hand starts glowing white as I feel shocks move over my body. Surprisingly, they don’t hurt. They actually feel nice, almost comforting.
“Cayne, focus on my voice.” Angela says with her hand still sending shocks through me. “Just breath, and focus.”
Doing as she says, I feel the burning in my hands start to disappear. Once it’s completely gone, I take a deep breath before slowly bringing myself to my feet. I see what Angela meant by becoming weak from using my power carelessly. I still can’t believe this is all real.
“As you can see, you need practice.” Angela says, standing up next to me. “That’s why we’re here.”
Natalie steps forward, staring intently at me.
“You need us to learn how to control yourself.” she says, moving next to Angela.
“You can help us protect others, prevent more attacks, like the one earlier.” Audri adds on to their statements.
My head is still spinning from everything that’s happened. If it wasn’t for my hands bursting into flames, I would still be in disbelief that I’m one of these people, a kheprian. What’s worse, I’m the reason Sona, the only girl I ever loved, is dead.
Tears start to form in my eyes as I think about what I should do. If I can learn to control this new power, I can use it to protect others from those monsters. I can prevent others from going through the same thing I have. Maybe I can even help someone who already has gone through it. This seems like what Sona would want. She would want me to help others using this power. Yes, I’ve made up mind.
“Alright…” I say, relaxing my hands by my sides. “I’m in.”
Angela smiles while offering her hand to me. I take it firmly in mine, a small grin forming on my face.
“Welcome to the family.” Angela says in an upbeat voice. Now this seems more like the Angela I know.
Audri suddenly appears behind me, wrapping her arms around my neck.
“Yay!” she says with a giggle. “About time we got a cute guy with us!”
Natalie rushes over, pulling Audri off of my back, her eyes already glowing red.
“Will you cut it out?” she yells with a low growl.
Audri disappears before showing up next to me, wrapping her arms around mine. My face flares up with heat as Natalie’s skin starts to darken.
“Come on, Nat!” Audri says, “Look at him!”
She leans up and kisses my cheek, making my face even hotter. Natalie lets out a huff before turning away from us.
“Pervert.” she whispers.
“Seriously? I didn’t even do anything!” I say, noticing Audri is now in front of Natalie.
The two of them argue loudly as I move over to Angela.
“Are they always like this?” I ask, staring at Natalie and Audri.
Angela sighs as a small smile appears on her face.
“Most of the time.” she says before turning to me, “Trust me, you’ll get used to it.”
I scratch the back of my neck as I chuckle nervously.
“Well, you should get back to your dorm.” Angela says, heading to the door. “We’ll start training you tomorrow. Get some rest.”
I sigh as I walk to the door, turning back to Angela and the others before opening it.
“I guess I’ll see you guys later.” I say softly as Natalie and Audri’s argument continues. Natalie’s growling gets louder before Angela shoots a bolt of lightning, locking her in place.
“Natalie, what did I tell you about getting aggressive?” Angela calls out to her. Audri stands still before turning to wink at me.
“Can’t wait to see you tomorrow.” she says.
“I’ll tell you when to come by later. Go get some rest.” Angela says, ignoring a paralyzed Natalie glaring at me.
“Alright.” I say with a nervous laugh.
I turn away as Angela closes the door behind me. Three crazy girls with superpowers are going to teach me how to control my own so we can protect others from evil spirits. Why do I feel like some kind of fantasy story character?
My phone vibrates in my pocket. When I look at the screen, I see a text from… Angela?
I put my number in ur phone while u were out. I’ll tell u when to meet us tomorrow morning.
Right when I finish reading the message, a call from Adam comes through. I should answer him, he’s probably wondering how my class went.
“Hey, Cayne, how was your class?” he asks.
“Okay, I guess.”
“And Angela, how are things with her? You guys have the same class, right?”
Everything that just happened replays in my head. Adam shouldn’t hear about any of this. He probably wouldn’t believe me anyway.
“She’s… doing well.” I say as I start walking to my dorm, continuing the conversation.
Thanks for reading! Be sure to get Episode One for free before May 7!
Next Chapter(Coming May 15)