Preface - hey... sorry about all this... im not sure if anyone's still interested, but after following up on some feedback, i decided to shorten the big prologue, and simplify it. hopefully not so many people will turn away from it now... please read & review... unless you're not registered... in which case, register, read, and review... and maybe even try a little writing yourself.
and im open to title suggestions for the sequel... im still a way away from the end of this one, but i want to be prepared... and such
happy reading :)
Prologue - The State Of Things
It was now the 20th anniversary of the end of the 2nd British civil war. About 6 months after the conclusion of World War Three, Britain was left with the majority of power in the world, and in turn the power changed them. A rebellion in the small inconsequential town of Skelmersdale fought to overthrow the corrupt government, and after several years, they finally succeeded.
It all began during the third world war. People where already launching nuclear devices, and without any defence, everyone would have been wiped out. A young scientist, James Swendarr, created the CL-001. The first working chemical laser turret that could track and shoot down cruise missiles. But the government used his plans to create weapons of mass destruction, more powerful than even they comprehended.
This weapon completely replaced traditional bombs, and had a much more devastating effect. Swendarr strongly disagreed with this, and swore to the government that unless they destroyed all air-ground-lasers, they would suffer. But the government just laughed at him. They had what they wanted, and so kicked him out of their plans. Swendarr, staying true to his word, moved up north.
He planned to stage a rebellion if the government didn't meet his demands, and so under the heat of the third world war, him, and the rebels he had gathered built a top secret base underneath Skelmersdale. This base was designed to be a fallout bunker and a home for the rebels, and their families, in the event of a civil war. It was more like an underground colony.
It was after the government demanded that all countries surrender, that Swendarr chose to attack. Russia put up a valiant fight, which distracted the government whilst he began mobilizing his rebellion. Civil war swept across the country, like fire through a pile of hay. Despite the co-operation from Russia and china, the rebellion was losing, growing lesser. And so, according to stories, Swendarr worked towards the creation of a secret weapon. He warned the nationalists, that even if they succeeded today, his hidden weapon would arise again, maybe tomorrow, maybe a century from Now, and they would fall to it.
Swendarr and the seventeen men that he had worked with hanged themselves, so that all knowledge of the weapon's location died with them. Their sacrifice unintentionally encouraged more people to rise up, and soon enough, the rebellion took the country. Some people believed that the sacrifice it's self was the weapon, but others disagreed. Some people Believed that the weapon never existed in the first place.
One thing was certain, the world was about to enter a new era…
Chapter 1 - Leon's Life.
Leon heard the alarm. He didn't care. He wanted to sleep. He put a pillow over his ear, and tried to sleep. It got louder. He sighed, before opening his eyes. Year 10 began today. He hated school already. He slouched down the stairs, and fell on the couch, where he lay, until he could stand to sit up, and drink the coffee on the table in front of him.
Toast. Slightly Burned bread, with butter to flavor it... a simple concept, yet a widely used recipe… Leon suddenly realized how much toast he ate. He had at least one piece a day. Always the same routine. Same breakfast. Coffee and toast. And yet, he still ate the warm toast, and slouched back to his bedroom, to get into his uniform. New Year, same old routine.
He walked into his large closet. The door slid shut behind him. He pushed his thumb into the gel pad, and the screen next to it lit up. He turned to the screen, and tapped "school uniform". The clothes rack behind him rotated, to reveal his uniform. He took them from their bracket. Same old routine...
He finished doing up his tie, and tapped "schoolbag". Motors where heard, and his bag came out, draped over an extending mechanic arm. Leon couldn't help but think that all this was unnecessary, just to get dressed. He pulled his bad off the arm, and tapped "retract". As the arm slowly retracted, Leon walked out. It seemed so unnecessary… he could keep his bag under his bed; use a wooden pole to hang his clothes… the human race had become lazy.
Leon walked over to his bed. He picked up his tablet laptop that he had stayed up on MSN chatting with his friends Luke and Jonas. He put it into its protective case, and then into his bag. Then he opened the draw on his bedside cabinet, where his laptop had been. He pulled out a can of deodorant, and threw it in too. Then he stuffed his jumper on top of it all. By now, he was wide awake.
Leon left home at 8:00. He stepped outside, and checked his watch. Just to make sure he wasn't late. He had a long walk to Luke's house. He was too tired to run it… he pulled his phone out of his pocket, and unraveled the headphones. With a single hand, he fed them up through his shirt, and out of the collar. Then he plugged one of them into his ear.
He was surprised at how warm the morning was. Doubtful that the summer would last long, he hiked his bag up a little, and sped up a little, pushing with his feet to generate more speed. As he navigated the maze like streets of the Tanhouse district, he looked around. He was pretty close to the center of the city. The very center had been leveled during the civil war bombings. At the time, Skelmersdale had been a small town. The older looking buildings didn't look very city like. They all looked the same.
Luke's house was round a corner. To any passers by, it just contributed to the maze. Very easy to miss. Leon knocked on the old door. The blue paint was peeling off. Luke came out the door. He looked similar to Leon, except he had longer, brown hair. Hi eyes where a more grey blue. Leon didn't really spend much time looking at his eyes. In fact, he didn't really look at many people's eyes. He tended to stare off into space.
"Hey" said Luke. It always eluded Leon as to how Luke was so wide awake in the morning. He replied with a grunt. They walked in silence for a while, before Luke finally opened his mouth
"you don't usually listen to music" he said
"yeh… I found this band I like" he said
"really" he asked. Luke wasn't a good talker… he was more of a listener, like Leon.
"Yeh… it's an old band, from like two-thousand-and-ten, or something" Leon continued.
"Who are they?" he asked
"urm... Miike Snow spelled with two I's…" he said
"sounds… strange" said Luke, with a bit of a frown. He shrugged it off
"some of that old music is pretty strange though… all they sing about is sex and money… drugs" he continued listing the common musical topics of the early 21st centaury.
"Yeh, most of them must have been nymphomaniacs" Leon laughed… of course he could use words like that with Luke, he knew what most of them meant. Unlike Jonas, who seemed to suffer from hippopotomonstrosesquipadaliophobia.
"But these guys are different… it's all experimental stuff… different electro beats, and such…" Leon gave a brief description. He knew how Luke didn't like music that much… Luke tended to spend his time playing on games.
Jonas lived in a larger, modern house. His living area was in the blast radius of the city centre, where it had been demolished. It was one of few that hadn't been replaced with erratic high rise flats. Leon laughed to himself… it was strangely funny that suicide rate had risen shortly after the high rises had been built… they waited for him to answer the door. Instead, he hung out the window
"I'll just be a second" he said… Leon sighed and sat down… Jonas was going to take a while.
Leon listened carefully to the lyrics… they seemed a little random…
"when your love has gone… you carry on….. This is her song…. This is a song for no-one…" instead of paying attention to Luke's blabbering about how Jonas was never ready, Leon spent his time trying to make sense out of why an American with two Swedish band mates would be singing a song for nobody… but then, some other songs immediately struck as… odd… entitled as "a horse is not a home" and "Cult logic".
"I think I own a photograph, that shows her in the freezing rain… with the Italians on the bank, they know how to entertain" Leon was only vaguely aware of the hand waving in his face
"a string of pearls behind your hair, a music box to catch your tears, now call your mother in LA, she hasn't heard your voice in years" Leon blinked. He had been sat on the ground leaning against the wall bopping his head slightly to the beat of the music…
"I think he's back" mocked Jonas. He had short brown hair, and hazel eyes. He had a much more offensive stance than Luke, as if he was going to punch anyone close enough…. Leon knew that despite the fact that he talked a lot about fighting, he never really did much of it.
The three of them walked into the gates together, and went to their usual spot. It was a typical school. Everyone had their own social group. It wasn't exactly a popularity system, but their where people that everyone knew, liked, or even victimized. Leon, Luke and Jonas where high up in the system, because everyone knew them as the free runners. They where commonly seen flying down stairs, taking a whole set in a single leap, or running up, taking seven steps per stride. Leon enjoyed the thrill of hurtling towards the floor, and the adrenaline rush he felt as he vaulted things others would have trouble climbing…
The three of them where in different tutors, so they went their separate ways as the alarm sounded. Leon was in room 227, history. As he climbed to the second story of block 2, there was nobody else around. He could move at full speed...
Leon could vault things most people dreamed of climbing over. In fact, he could probably vault things that Luke and Jonas could only dream of climbing over. Regular people could just about jump up 5 steps. Good jumpers, like Luke and Jonas could scratch 7. Leon cleared 12 steps, the whole flight, with ease. He could make a 60 second hike up the stairs in about 2 seconds. But then, Leon was about as far from regular as he could get away with. It had all started for him, 5 years ago, as a 9 year old boy…