I spent another day in bed watching the others come and go. Those that went out came back with reports that the hoods were rounding people up using fenced in school yards as giant holding cells. The dark freaky armed monsters patrolled them endlessly.
Mark hadn’t returned. Andy had gone to the library the first two days after I woke up in the motel but he hadn’t been there. The concusses then had been to stay away from the library so as not to draw attention to it. Mark knew better than any of us what was going on and so he should be fine. Mary wasn’t thrilled with the idea of leaving her father on his own, but she knew that we were doing exactly what he wanted.
Three days later I stood at the top of the grocery store across from the two story motel that served as our camp. The sky had clouded over threatening to rain at any moment. The sword now hung at my side and the shield on my back, Josh had taught me how to keep them hanging around. He was out now with Andy while Bill and I watched Mary. I didn’t like leaving her alone with Bill but I had to get out of there. I had to learn to control my power.
Letting out a deep breath I ran and jumped. I cleared the street and made the jump up to the roof of the motel. I kept moving and jumped again, going even higher and farther. I was now two blocks down from the grocery store and four stories up on a half finished office building. I made my way up leaping from floor to floor through the gaps in construction, at one point I couldn’t find a hole and so I made my own blasting through with the shield. Seven stories up I could see most of the surrounding area. It was the westside of the city, still being developed. Low income housing, crappy motels and then the new buildings going up. A few of them finished already shinning against the mediocrity of the other buildings and the grey sky above.
And through it all the freeway running, but it wasn’t the color of cement. It was black, pitch black and it was moving.
There had to be at least a hundred hoods accompanied by an innumerable amount of their dark minions. The time for hiding was over. I sprinted and made the biggest jump yet. I wish I could say I was flying, for the first half of the leap I actually thought I was, but I wasn’t. I was falling. At least I was headed for the hotel. I put the shield on my feet as panic coursed through me. I blew through the motel. Finding myself in the basement, looking up at the sky though a hole about four feet wide. Mary’s head popped up from the second story in the hole.
“It’s just Clyde.” She said smiling down at me. “You ok down there?”
“You moron, your going to lead them right to us!” Yelled Bill the Bastard, his face, beat red, appeared next to Mary’s in the hole. A piece of flooring, or maybe ceiling, fell down on me bouncing off my shield.
“They already know we are here, we have to move.” I said back to him.
“Let’s go” He said scooping up Mary. I could feel my blood boil, it didn’t have anything to do with my new powers this time though. I saw them bolt from the hole and heard a crash as he broke though a wall. I jumped up to our room, and snagged the prepared bug out bag, Andy and Josh had one too, and followed Bill the Bastard out through the hole he had made.
We were headed downtown. Bill was a few blocks ahead of me, but I could see him rising and falling as he moved from rooftop to rooftop. My heart was racing as I tried to catch up to Bill. I didn’t even look behind me, there was no way the hoods could keep up with us.
Then I heard a low whine creeping up behind me. I made a huge jump skipping a whole building, giving myself enough time to turn in the air to see behind me. I had done so just in time, There were five of the hoods on little flying moped looking things. The mopeds were black and covered in what looked like scales almost like little black dragons. In fact they were little black dragons and one of them had spit a ball of green fire at me. I deflected it off my shield but the impact had knocked me off target and I sent crashing back first into the street. I felt the canned food in the bug out bag give way and pop, I never really cared for the smell of canned spinach and it was really welcome then either.
I was back on my feet quick enough to deflect another ball of fire. Deflect isn’t really a good word for what I was doing. I think absorbing works better, each time the ball of fire collided with my shield it wasn’t redirected, deflected, or rerouted it just exploded at which point my body absorbed the impact and as a result I went flying back again. This time I smashed through a post office window and into a wall of PO boxes. The little metal doors popped open all around me. Three of the dragons and their riders were on me in the time it took me to draw my sword.
But now I was ready. A ball of fire burst from the lips of the center dragon, I jumped to the right as the green ball forced the rest of the PO boxes open. Moving quickly now I jumped up through the roof of the post office as another dragon let loose.
I had to get to the other riders before they caught up to Mary and Bill. I couldn’t see Bill anymore but I did see the two hoods a block up. I gave chase, moving with a sense of urgency I hadn’t yet felt. My body was on fire. I couldn’t believe I wasn’t literally bursting into flames. Between the fire breathing dragons trying to roast me and my own internal temperature it really was a miracle that I wasn’t on fire. I was glowing though and very brightly, I could see the light emanating from me on the building around me like a light bulb or a really big firefly.
I was gaining on the two riders when my pursuers forced me off my course. They had decided that I was too hard to hit and had taken to destroying the path I was trying to follow. The buildings in front of me erupted in green flame just as I was getting ready to jump for them. Each time I changed course they forced me away.
A strange thing happened at that point, my Mary radar pinged. Behind me.