One of the most important events in the universe occurred on 17th of March 1987, on a backwater planet in one of the most isolated star systems in the galaxy. The significance of the event will not be known or felt for another twenty eight years. On the most intense blue, white, and green planet, a child was born, unknown of fate's plan for him. He cried for warmth, cried from hunger, and cried for the lost sense of safety he felt in the womb.
The nurse placed the child in its mother's arms, where she looked down at her son. He had the most intense green eyes she ever seen, and a head full of brown hair just like her. She held him only for a moment before the doctor yelled for clamps, and the nurse took the child away as the doctor and several other nurses went work on her. The mother couldn't make sense of all the medical terms except for one, hemorrhaging, she was bleeding out. The doctor and the nurses worked on the mother for some time, but they were not able to save her. Just before she died, she drew in her last breath and spoke a single word.
In the next room, Kyle cried out for his mother.
Ten years later
His father came home drunk as usual, Kyle, suffering at the hand of his father since he was born, knew he had to make himself scarce. But before he had the chance, his father grabbed him by the back of his collar and dragged him to the master bedroom. Kyle knew what was coming and surrendered to the evitable. His father pushed him on the bed and, his words slurring, yelled at him to take both of their pants off. Knowing the price of disobedience, Kyle hurried to comply. After the pants were off, his father forced himself onto Kyle, thrusting into him until he came. Father slumped onto the bed and muttered,
"Finally made some money on you, you murdering bastard. Ran into couple of old friends of mine, Ron and Bob. Sold ya to them for five grand, said they wanted to make a movie with ya."
Kyle froze at hearing the names Ron and Bob, he knew them, his father had loaned his body to them on occasion, but the last time he was there, he stumbled across a snuff video starring Ron and Bob who were raping a boy Kyle met once from across the street who vanished three months ago. The video showed them raping and killing the boy,
"Enjoying the show?"
Kyle screamed as Bob spoke up from behind him and he spun around, Bob was waving the same knife he used on the boy in the video, but before Kyle could say anything, his father came in and Bob quickly hid his knife behind his back. That was the only time when Kyle was glad to see his father.
Kyle knew the kind of movie they wanted to make and begged his father or at least tried to,
"Please father, I don't want anything to do with them."
"Shut up, you piece of shit." He punched Kyle in the face, "You killed my favorite fuck-toy ten years ago. It's not that easy to find the perfect fuck-toy. She was the type that believed in the soul mate crap. It was so easy to lead her on and trick her into believing whatever I said. Now all I got is a cheap piece of crap that can't even suck a dick right."
"But I saw them fuck and kill a boy."
"Oh you mean the boy from across the street, yeah; who did you think was holding the camera? That kind of shit doesn't do a damn thing for me but I owed them a favor."
Kyle was used to being afraid, but at the cold contempt and uncaring voice coming from his father, Kyle was beyond terrified. Kyle had only met the boy once shortly before the boy died. He had done nothing but talk about his birthday which was the day before.
Kyle remained still and silent until he heard his father snoring, then he slowly got out of the bed wincing at the pain in his butt. Kyle had made the decision to run, he crept to his room, which actually was an closet, and packed what clothes he had when an arm whipped around his neck and pulled him to his father's chest,
"I don't think so," he pushed his M1911 pistol to Kyle's head, "I promised Ron and Bob that I'll bring you to them naked tomorrow, beside, they already paid me."
Suddenly consumed by survival instinct, Kyle thrashed and one of his heels managed to find its way up between his father legs. He doubled over in pain and dropped the gun to grab his groin. Kyle dove after the gun and grabbed it. His father, seeing Kyle grab the gun, lunged at him, but before he could reach Kyle, his head exploded. No matter how hard he tried to remember afterwards, Kyle could not remember pulling the trigger. The recoil nearly broke his wrist and caused him to drop the gun. He looked at his father's body and threw up all over it.
The slamming of the door opening startled Kyle, and he grabbed the gun just as Ron came running down the hall carrying yet another pistol. Apparently Ron and Bob had been waiting outside for Kyle's father to fall asleep so they could sneak in and kill him and take their money back along with Kyle.
Kyle lifted the gun and fired, he never knew if it was luck or fate, but the bullet he fired passed through Ron's chest and into Bob's neck as he followed closely behind Ron. They both collapsed, Ron's death was instant, but Bob grabbed his neck and gurgled for a few moments before he bled out.
Forgetting everything he had planned, Kyle left everything behind and ran.
One year later
The morning light shone through a crack in the ceiling of the abandoned drainage tunnel and woke Kyle from his regular nightmare. Every night since he ran away after shooting his father, Kyle was plagued by nightmares of his father along with Ron and Bob.
It always started the same, the events following up to his father death was the same, except it changed after he dove after the gun his father dropped. The moment his hand wrapped around the gun, tentacles sprouted out from the floor and wrapped around his arms and legs restraining him until his father took the gun out of his hand. His father grinned and called out for Ron and Bob, they came walking in through the living room with grins on their face. But it wasn't the grin on their face that held Kyle's attention; it was the blood bleeding out of Ron's chest and Bob's neck. He turned to his father and saw him grin before his head exploded bathing Kyle in his father's blood.
Kyle always woke up at that point, and fortunately today, the sunlight woke him up earlier, before the head exploding part. He sighed and got out of his bed, rubbing his hand trying to warm them up. The fire in the rusted barrel that Kyle and his alcoholic friend had lain to sleep by last night had gone out. Groaning, he grabbed some of the tree limbs they've gathered and packed into their shopping cart a few days ago; and he managed to rebuilt the fire with a little help from vodka, flint, and a piece of metal. He grabbed an long branch and poked his friend Jake,
"Jake, wake up!"
"Huh," Jake sat up rubbing his eye, "what's up."
"You let the fire go out."
"Oops," Jake looked around and asked, "Hey, where's my vodka?"
"You know, vodka makes an excellent lighter fluid. I've never seen the firewood goes up in flame so fast before."
"Oh come on man! That was my last bottle of vodka. What the hell am I suppose to drink now."
"Why don't you try water, last I hear, it was good for you."
"Go fuck yourself."
"I tried but my dick ain't long enough. Now, we need to get some more firewood and bring it in to dry for later."
"All right," Jake got up and warmed his hand over the barrel. Once they warmed up enough, they went and spent half of the morning gathering up fallen tree limbs. Once the shopping cart was full, they returned and fed the last of the dry firewood to the fire and left the cart beside the fire to dry the wet limbs.
Kyle and Jake left to scavenge for food, first they visited one of the few restaurants where some of the cooks were willing to hand out some edible leftovers. They struck out at that one, and the next three were the same, resigned, they resorted to shifting through the garbage. They managed to find enough food to last them for the day, and they shifted their attention to "scavenging".
What Kyle and Jake called "scavenging", the law would call pick pocketing and they always made sure to steal or "scavenge" from the rich only. It was one of the few rules taught to Kyle by Jake, when he came across Kyle starving and freezing to death about eleven months ago. The rich can easily replace whatever Kyle and Jake steal.
Kyle and Jake headed uptown, where they immediately went to work relieving the wealthy of their burden. Just after two hours, they already lifted ten wallets which combined give the total of two hundred and fifty nine dollars. The credit cards and the driver licenses, they tossed into the first garbage bin they came across, as their previous experience with credit cards and driver licenses nearly got them caught.
Kyle and Jake headed to their favorite mom and pop store, Pappy' and used the money to buy some non-perishable food and hung around to chat with the nice old lady who owned the store. Janelle White had opened the shop with her husband fifteen years ago, and not long after, they became well liked by the local neighbors. When her husband died two years ago, nearly the whole neighbors came to his funeral.
A year ago, a boy with brown hair and very intense green eyes that bears a terrible resemblance to those she saw in her husband's eye when he came home from Europe after World War II. She immediately fell in love with the dear boy, and came to see him as a grandson she never had. Once, she asked Kyle about where he came from, he clammed up, muttered something about having something to do and left. The next day he came in and acted like nothing had happened, and she never asked again.
Today, Kyle was drafted by Janelle to help restock some of the shelves, Jake stayed at the counter to watch the TV where the local news was showing,
"- be all we have for weather for today. Now over to our daily Criminals watch, Maxine Harrington."
"Thank you Katherine," a beautiful oriental woman spoke, "A year ago today, three men were found shot dead in an apartment owned by one of the victim, a John Weber. The other two males found in the apartment were identified as Ronald Williams and Robert Ackerman. The weapon used in the killing was left behind, and the police department discovered two sets of fingerprints on it belonging to John Weber and his son Kyle Weber. After some investigation, it was discovered that John Weber did not fire the gun. At the moment, it is believed that his son Kyle is responsible for the killing, and the police department has offered a five thousand dollars reward for his arrest."
Jake listened halfheartedly, but when Kyle's name came up, he sat up and paid attention. He was unsure if it was the same person, but when Kyle's picture came up, his eyes gleamed, and when the numbers for the hotline came up, he immediately wrote down the numbers. Kyle came out from among the aisles and Jake quickly turned off the TV.
"Hey Jake, are we done here?" Kyle asked, and Jake affirmed. Kyle turned to Janelle who thanked him for the help, he shrugged and said goodbye.
They left with Jake following Kyle, while he discreetly slipped the piece of paper with the phone numbers into his pocket.
The next day
BETRAYED! Kyle weaved through the back alleys trying to run from the police chasing him; he couldn't believe that Jake had betrayed him. A police cruiser screeched to halt at the end of the alley trying to block him, but Kyle just changed direction into one of the side alleys and managed to squeeze under the chain link fence blocking his way. That fence blocked the cops long enough for Kyle to slip down an uncovered manhole and lose himself among the maze of sewer tunnels.
The next day, Kyle came out of the tunnels near the edge of the town; he took a moment to orient himself, and immediately headed east toward Janelle's store. Kyle ran the whole way, keeping to the back streets and alleys. He arrived at the alley behind the store and snuck in through the back door; Janelle was unpacking some box when Kyle's voice startled her.
"Janelle?" She yelped and spun around,
"Kyle! You scared me." She took one look at his face and his clothes and asked, "What's wrong?"
"I need a place to stay and I was wondering if I could use the spare room upstairs?"
"Sure," Janelle winkled her nose, "but first you need a shower badly."
"I know," Kyle replied, "I spent the night and part of the day yesterday in the sewer."
"Why would you do that?" she asked and he sighed, "I did something very bad a year ago and the cops are after me. Jake told the cops where I was yesterday and the cops chased me. I only got away because I crawled into the sewer."
"What did you do?"
"I don't want to talk about it. All I need is a place to stay for the night."
Janelle sighed, "Ok, you know you can talk to me any time you want."
"I know, I just don't want to talk about it."
"Ok, follow me." Janelle headed over to the far side of the back room where the stairs to the second floor where she lived were. Kyle knew about it but had never been up there, Janelle led him upstairs and to the master bedroom, where she took out some old clothes that belonged to her husband and handed them to Kyle. "This used to be my husband's. It's a little bit too big for you, but it's something you can wear while I wash your clothes."
He took the clothes, saying "Thanks."
"It's ok. Come on, the shower's down the hall and the spare room's across from it."
"Ok," They went down the hall and Janelle opened the door to the shower and stepped back to let Kyle by. "The towels' on the middle shelve. I'll b- OH MY GOD!" Janelle exclaimed when Kyle took off his shirt and she saw the mass of scars covering his back. She'd seen those scars before when she was researching slavery, it was on the back of every black slave in the pictures from the south. Kyle had been whipped so many time that the scars covered his entire back. Janelle's cry of shock spun Kyle around,
"Your back," Janelle replied and asked, "Who did that to you?"
"Oh," his face became emotionless mask, "I don't want to talk about it ok."
"No, leave it alone." Kyle closed the door before Janelle could say anything and she stood there for a short time before he opened the door and handed the rest of his clothes to her then closed the door again. She could hear him turn on the shower so she left to wash the clothes.
While Janelle was washing his clothes, Kyle was standing under the shower head letting the hot water run over his body. He didn't remember the last time he had a hot shower, so he wanted to savor this one. Unfortunately it didn't take very long before the hot water ran out, so he got out, brushed, and dressed. The pants were too big, so he held them up until he found a belt under the sink.
Janelle was cooking some bacon, toast, and scrambled eggs when Kyle came into the kitchen. "Hungry?"
"Yeah," Kyle sat down at the small dinner table in the corner of the kitchen by the refrigerator, and she brought a plate over then set it down in front of him. Kyle immediately began shoveling the food into his mouth. She never saw anybody eat so fast, "Whoa, slow down, I don't want you to choke."
He looked up at her and back at the food in front of him,
"Sorry, when you've lived on the street, you won't find much food, especially freshly cooked." He went back to eating but now at a slower pace.
"What are you going to do?" Janelle asked after Kyle had finished eating. He sat back in the chair,
"First I'm going to find Jake and talk with him. What happens afterward will be up to him."
"I hope you won't hurt him."
"I can't promise you that, but I can promise you this, he won't die from any pain I may give him."
Janelle wasn't comforted by that, but she knew that when he makes a promise, he will keep it, so she left it alone. The silence between them thickened and Kyle felt awkward, so he got up and told her that he was leaving to go after Jake.
"Will you be ok?" she asked, to which Kyle replied, "Yeah, hopefully it won't take long, besides you have a store to open."
"Yes I do, be careful, Kyle." She thought she saw a smirk on his face before he left but shrugged it off as a figment of her imagination, and followed him downstairs where she unlocked the front door and let him out. She flipped the Open sign around and went around the counter, but she didn't have to wait long before her first customer came in.
Kyle headed over to the drainage tunnel, but Jake wasn't there so he grabbed what little possessions he had from under his worn-out mattress, along with a pack which he proceeded to stuff his possessions into. He heard a twig snap behind him and he spun around only to catch a glimpse of a fist just before it connected with his face. He rolled with the punch and used the momentum to gain some space between him and the attacker.
It was Jake, at the sight of him, Kyle lost control and tackle him to the ground. They wrestled across the floor trying to gain the upper hand, but in the end, it was Kyle who managed to dislocate Jake's shoulder. While Jake was screaming and clutching his shoulder, Kyle took a knife out of his pack and pressed it to Jake's throat.
"Jake, shut up you crying bastard." Kyle pushed the knife, "You betrayed me, and I assure you that if you hadn't been my friend this past year, I would've slit your throat by now. But because you were, I'm going to give you a choice; one, I escort you to the bus terminal and you leave town immediately, or two, I slit your throat right here and now."
Jake was still clutching his shoulder and whimpering; Kyle drew back and smacked him in the dislocated shoulder as hard as he could. Jake screamed, "Choose, or I'll just slit your throat now and get it over with."
"All right, all right! I'll go, just don't hurt me."
"Excellent, lets go." Kyle grabbed Jake and yanked him up onto his feet. "Grab your shit; we're heading to the greyhound bus station."
Several hours later, after Kyle made sure that Jake got on the bus, he arrived back at Janelle's store. Janelle was busy with a customer, but she did ask for him to stock some shelves. He busied himself with the stocking until Janelle told him to follow her upstairs for a lunch break, and after they sat down to eat, she asked,
"Did you find Jake?"
"He found me and gave me one hell of a wallop, but I managed to talk him into leaving town. I escorted him to the greyhound bus station; I made sure he got on a bus about half an hour ago."
"I hope you didn't use too much violence."
"Not really, it only took a dislocated shoulder before he would listen." Kyle looked up and hastily reassured her when he saw anxiousness on her face, "Don't worry, I fixed it for him."
"All right, if you say so, let's eat." They spent the rest of lunch eating in silence, and after the food was gone, they washed the dishes. They went back downstairs and spent the rest of the day working in the store. As the afternoon turned into dusk, Janelle stood up from the seat behind the counter and walked over to the door to flip the Open sign to Closed.
"Come, Kyle, help an old woman up the stairs." Kyle chuckled, and offered his arm to her. She slips her arm into his, and they climbed upstairs where they proceed to cook lasagna for dinner. They ate dinner, cleaned up, said good night and went to bed.
The smell of smoke woke Kyle from his deep sleep, coughing, Kyle looked around and saw flickering of light coming from underneath the door which could only be made by fire. There also was smoke accompanying the light, and he knew that there was fire and that he and Janelle were in trouble. He checked the doorknob and fortunately it was still cool, so he opened the door and checked the hallway. The fire was coming from down the hall where Janelle's bedroom was. He sprint down the hallway weaving between fires and manage to reach Janelle's room. The fire and heat was intense, but he ignored it and went inside looking for her.
The smoke was too intense so he dropped to his knee and crawled over to the bed. He could make out Janelle's sleeping figure and reached out to wake her up. He shook her, but the motion turned her body toward him and revealed her gashed neck. He stared at the bleeding neck in shock, unable to accept the reality of her death. An explosion from below brought him back, and he grabbed her body and lifted her into the fireman carry. Unwilling to leave her body to the fire, he carried her over to the window which already was opened, and pushed her through onto the fire escape stairwell. It was midnight but a crowd already had began to gathering,
"HEY OVER HERE," Kyle screamed, "Help me goddamn it." A few of the people heard him and came over to help. They helped him carry the body across the street and lowered it to the ground.
"Oh My God It's Janelle." One of the men exclaimed and the exclamation drew the rest of the onlookers toward them. Kyle looked up and saw somebody among the crowd that should've not been there. Kyle grabbed one of the spectators and ordered him to watch after the body then took off after Jake.
The chase took them down the block into the warehouse districts chockfull of abandoned warehouses. Jake ran into one of the warehouse and Kyle followed, scooping up a lead pipe before stepping through the door. The warehouse was dark and full of boxes which made Kyle very wary.
A movement in the corner of his eye drew his attention, and he ran after it only to dive to the ground when Jake slashed the knife at his face. Kyle landed on his stomach then quickly turns over onto his back only to barely bring up his lead pipe in time to block the knife coming toward his head. He swept Jake's leg out from underneath and then while on his back, he swings the pipe at Jake's head but missed when he rolled away.
They rolled apart and stood to stare at each other, Kyle asked,
"This is my town and I won't leave." Jake spat,
"W- That's it. You won't leave so you just killed Janelle?"
"She got in the way. I came in through the window, and she woke up just as I was passing so I killed her. I crept over to your room but you had locked the goddamn door, so I decided to just burn you to death."
Enraged, Kyle attacked, swinging away with his pipe, and managed to knock away the knife. He also broke Jake's jaw with the pipe on the backswing driving him to the ground again. Kyle dropped the pipe and recovered the knife after which he grabbed Jake's hair and pulled his head up exposing his throat. He pressed the knife to the throat and with one quick jerk, slit Jake's throat.
Kyle looked down at the growing pool of blood spreading from underneath Jake's body and felt nothing. Sighing, he turned and left the warehouse, but not before picking up the pipe; half hour later, he was in the abandoned drainage tunnel in the park burying the knife and the pipe under his old mattress.
He got up, turned around, and walked out of the tunnel into the darkness.
Science Fiction /