H i g h S c h o o l X

So the try-outs we held sucked. I mean the kids that came were so not right for us. I mean there were some kids with potential, but once they found out it was us who wanted the team, they weren't interested. The list that Bobby made was basically all we had to go by. When those kids came in we paid extra attention to them. The first person who came in was the girl Sooraya. Coincidentally, she was the girl that Jubilee had talked about. I couldn't understand why people didn't talk to her. Maybe it was because she always wore her religious outfit. I don't know, but she was kick ass.


Gender: Female

Race: Middle Eastern

Height: 5'6”

Weight: 136lbs.

Eyes: Brown

Hair: Black

I didn't know what to expect when I walked into the Danger Room. I had only been here a few times, and that was to assess my powers. I hadn't been back since. I didn't like being watched so heavily. But, I felt like I needed to do something more with my powers. This would also be a great way to meet new people. People were so afraid of me. Or maybe they just didn't understand why I preferred to wear my religious clothing instead of street clothes. It was just something personal.

When I walked in the door, all eyes were on me. There was a decent group of kids sitting behind a row of tables and they had clipboards and pens waiting. I saw the girl from my class, Jubilee, and when she saw me, she waved. I quickly waved back even though she had never said much to me before.

Girl#1: “Hi. What's your name?”

'' Sooraya Qadir.”

Guy#1: “Well as you know... We're trying to build a team. We aren't sure what exactly the intent of the team is yet, but the Professor thinks it's wise that we form our own squad.”

'' I'm aware of all of that. I'm not sure if a squad is right for me. I usually have problems getting along with people.”

Jubilee: “Why is that?”

'' Because of my religion. Everyone assumes things because I were my burqa and niqab. My presence makes them afraid.”

Guy#2: “Well you don't have to worry about that with us. My name is Carson.”

He pointed to the rest of the group in turn and I learned all of their names. Xander who apparently was only helping with selections, was the first to get things moving.

Xander: “So what are your powers exactly? No one was able to give us a very good description.”

'' I've tried not to use my powers much.”

Serenity: “Are you ashamed of them?”

'' No! Of course not. These powers are a gift from Allah. I just haven't really needed to use them much.”

Jamie: “And what are your powers?”

I held out my hand and watched as my skin started to separate. Soon my entire arm was floating away from me into tiny sand particles. The rest of my body soon followed and I showed them what I can do. I created a sand storm and showed them how powerful my sand was. With a bit more concentration, I turned my burqa into sand and settled back on the ground. I located the groves of the floor and set my body into them, so I was untraceable on the ground. I rapidly moved toward them and took form once I was in front of them. They had looks of astonishment on their faces and I was pleased.

Casey: “Most definitely. We'll need to run a few more drills, but you are definitely a runner up.”

I nodded in their direction and left the room.

~ ~ ~

Casey: “Okay! Next up is Victor.”

Jude: “Oh this ought to be fucking fantastic.”

Story: “What's up?”

Nazarus: “Nothing. We just had a run in with this kid and the other one Julian.”

Story: '' What kind of run in?”

Jude: “They're just kinda jerks is all. Whatever... Let's get this over with.”

Victor Borkowski

Gender: Male

Race: Caucasian

Height: 5'9”

Weight: 121lbs.

Eyes: Green

Hair: None

This should be interesting.

I walked into the room and immediately all eyes were on me. I wasn't embarrassed at all. I had come to terms with my appearance a long time ago. I had come to terms with a lot of things in my life. But, I don't even know if they were really looking at my skin like that.... There was a pretty good group of people already, so I was wondering why they needed new members. They all introduced themselves and we got onto business.

Jubilee: “And your name is?”

'' Victor Borkowski.”

Xander: “And you know what the team is looking for right?”

'' I was given some of the details. I heard you guys were forming a team and I wanted to check it out.”

Carson: “So what are your powers?”

I turned around and ran as fast as I possibly could. The Professor told me that I had an enhanced speed factor which made me run extremely fast. I also have superhuman stamina which means that I don't get tired like normal people. I also have extremely fast reflexes, superhuman agility, and I'm super strong. My senses are also more acute than most people's senses. I slowed down near a wall, and showed them that I could crawl on walls and then I jumped back to the ground. I let my tongue fly from my mouth and snagged the can that the kid Carson had been drinking.

'' So what do you guys think?”

Story: “Once we do some more tests...I'm sure we can find a place for you on this team.”

'' Awesome. I'm psyched.”

Nazarus: “Send you're friend in.”

'' No problem. I'd also like to apologize about earlier. The day was kind of sucking, so we were pretty pissed off.”

Jude: “No problem.”


Gender: Male

Race: Caucasian

Height: 5'10”

Weight: 170 lbs.

Eyes: Blue

Hair: Black

'' I don't want to go in there.”

Victor: “Dude... Stop being such a douche. Just go in there.”

'' I don't need to be on a squad that bad. I don't like those guys.”

Victor: “Julian... Honestly ask yourself how many people would be on a team with you? You're an asshole.”

'' What the fuck is that supposed to mean?”

Victor: “It means that you're an asshole. Not many people would want to work with you and you know that. You're arrogant, a show off, and just a downright ass at times.”

'' I thought you were my friend.”

Victor: “I am your friend. That's why I'm telling you how it is. You need them and apparently, they might want you, so you need to get in there.”

'' Fine.”

I knew Victor was right and it was pissing me off. Not a lot of people would work with me because of my attitude. I didn't think I had a bad attitude, but some of my peers did. I knew I could be a bit big-headed at times, but what Victor had just said had really gotten to me. I made my way into the room, and it seemed like all eyes were on me. I could see that Jude guy looking right at me, and that Nazarus guy had a devilish grin on his face. I wanted to run back out of there, but that would have made me seem like some kind of coward. I was nobodies coward.

Girl #3: “You're Julian Keller?”

'' Yep.”

Introductions were made and then they laid into me.

Casey: “The stuff we heard about you wasn't all that positive.”

'' Meaning?”

Jude: “We think you're an asshole and so does the majority of the student population who have had the pleasure of meeting you.”

Kitty: “What he means to say is.... We think that your attitude might make you a liability to the team.”

'' I'm just here for a fucking audition. I'm outta here.”

I turned around and the Nazarus jerk was right in front of me.

'' If you know what's good for you, you'll get out of my way right now.”

Nazarus: “Is that right?”

I blasted him right out of my way. Fuck the dumb shit. I wasn't in the mood for this crap. I heard chairs being scooted back and I turned around ready to fight. Everyone was looking at me, but none of them attacked me. Jude was keeled over in pain, but I don't know why. I never even touched him. He looked up at me and I saw murder in his eyes. He crouched like he was going to jump at me, but when he left the ground, he was thrown back and crashed to the ground. I wonder who had attacked him, and when I turned around, Nazarus was looking right at me.

Nazarus: “Let's do it.”

I punched the air, and everything under me broke. My telekinesis ripped the ground apart and sent it flying in his direction. I couldn't believe my eyes when he created a portal and was left unharmed. I went to jump in the air, but I was hit by all the debris that I just sent in his direction. I fell to the ground, but I wasn't hurt to bad. I created a shield around myself and propelled myself forward with telekinesis. He wasn't prepared for that and he bounced off my shield as I crashed into him. He hit the ground, but he was on his feet almost instantly. I created a force blast and directed it at him, but he created one of some kind of dark energy and sent it at me. I think we were hit at the same time, but I was the only one to scream out in pain. I was hallucinating... I don't know what exactly I was seeing, but it was fucking terrifying. I saw a world that I didn't know existed... things that shouldn't exist. The stuff that nightmares are made of. Suddenly my head cleared and I was trying to see through the tears in my eyes. Nazarus was above me with his hand extended towards me. I wanted to smack his hand away, but I knew that wouldn't do anything to kill the hostility these people had for me. I grabbed his hand and he helped me to my feet.

Bobby: “I think we can find a place for you after all.”

'' What? Are you serious?”

Jubilee: “Yeah.”

I thanked them and made my way out of there. Victor was waiting outside the door and he looked all extra worried.

Victor: “I heard screaming.”

'' Yeah... I had to kick that guy Nazarus' ass real kick.”

Victor: “Stop bullshitting. You got your ass whooped.”

'' Dude whatever!”

Loa (Alani Ryan)

Gender: Female

Race: Hawaiian

Height: 5' 8"

Weight: 139 lbs

Eyes: Brown

Hair: Brown

I really don't want to do this.

I mean I really really don't want to do this.

My power wasn't even all that good.

Victor: “Loa get in there. You never know what they might say.”

Julian: “They gave me a spot on the team.”

'' You two actually have powers that mean something.”

They weren't trying to hear anything I said. I wasn't even on that list thingy, but they were pushing me in here. I almost froze when I saw the panel of kids waiting there. I hadn't heard the best things about them, but I didn't like to base my opinions on what other people said. I stopped in front of them, and waited for them to begin. I was formally introduced to all of them and they started asking me questions.

Jude: “What's your name?”

'' Alani Ryan, but everyone just calls me Loa.”

Jamie: “What are your tattoos of?”

'' They are just markings.”

Casey: “Related to your mutation in any way?”

'' Not that I'm aware of... Um... Is there away that someone can construct a wall or something?”

Jubilee: “A wall?”

'' Yes!”

One of them disappeared and reappeared just as quickly. There was a blurring in front of me, and then there was a wall. Seven more popped up around me and I was fully enclosed. I walked up to one of the walls and put my hand through it. My hand passed through and the wall cracked into a billion pieces. I walked through the rest of the walls and they all crumbled beneath me. I stopped in front of them and gaged their expressions. They didn't say anything, but Casey stood up and phased through the table. She walked up to me and before I could even wonder why, she threw a punch right at my face. I jumped back, but she kept coming at me. I rolled away from her and started running. I didn't know why she was attacking me like this. I looked around for the nearest wall and ran in that direction. I heard Casey's feet stop, but I kept running. I had almost made it to the wall, when I felt a force knock me to the ground. I fazed through the ground and heard it crumbling beneath me. I deactivated my powers and climbed out of the hole I made.

'' Please stop!”

She sent another energy bolt at me and I screamed in horror. I felt it crash into my chest and I fell to the ground. I wasn't actually hurt. Well my pride was hurt, but other than that, I was fine. I got up off of the ground and brushed myself off. I turned around and quickly headed for the door. I just knew they didn't want me.

Casey: “Hey where are you going?”

I turned around and just looked at them. They didn't have the disappointed looks on their faces that I imagined they would have. I slowly walked back up to the desk and wiped the tears out of my eyes.

Jude: “We can't put you on the team just yet, but I'm sure we can work with you.”

Kitty: “You're powers are fascinating, but we'll want to do some more tests and see what else you might be able to do.”

'' Wouldn't the Professor have found something else by now?”

Jamie: “We plan on putting you through more rigorous training than the Professor would. Is that okay with you?”

'' Yes. I'm willing to do what ever it takes.”

Carson: “Awesome. We'll be in touch.”

Eric “Ink” Gitter

Gender: Male

Race: Mixed (African American/Caucasian)

Height: 6'1”

Weight: 201 lbs.

Eyes: Blue

Hair: Light Brown

Julian: “No one knows anything about him.”

Sooraya: “You both should quit talking about him.”

Victor: “Sooraya seriously... This guy is a complete mystery. I heard Scott sprung him out of jail.”

Alani: “If he did, it was for a good reason. Leave it alone.”

Julian: “I just wouldn't want to be on a team with a guy like that... I mean a criminal here at the mansion.”

'' You should have listened to your friend. You never know who might be listening.”

Julian: “Excuse me?”

'' You heard what I said pretty boy. Watch who the fuck you're talking about next time.”

Julian: “Or what?”

These fuckers just didn't learn. I walked up to him and just tapped him on the shoulder.

'' Let me know when I come back out.”

I laughed the whole way into the Danger Room. I heard someone ask him if he was okay, and then the puking begin. Works every time!

I walked up to the table of kids and to be honest, I wasn't entirely impressed. There didn't look to be anything special about them at all. Whatever! If they wanted someone kick ass on their team... Who was I to take that away from them.

I took in everybody, but my eyes were immediately drawn to the light skinned girl with the long brown hair. She was simply beautiful. I watched every movement she made. The way she was chewing on her lip, the way she looked at me, waiting for me to do something... Oh shit! They were waiting on me.

Some Carson guy introduced everyone to me, but I only heard one name.


Serenity: “So what can you do?”

'' Anything you want me to.”

Serenity: “Excuse me.”

'' What I meant to say was, I can do some stuff. Whenever I get a new tattoo, I acquire a new power.”

Carson: “Seriously?”

'' Uh... Yeah.”

Serenity: “Take off your clothes.”

Everyone looked at her like she was crazy, but not me. I'd take my clothes off for her any day.

'' No problem.”

I took of my shirt, then my shoes, and then my socks and pants. I was going to take off my underwear too, but she cleared her throat and I looked back up to her.

Serenity: “That won't be necessary.”

She walked around the table and walked up to me. I couldn't help but look at the sexy way she walked towards me.

Serenity: “Let me see your hands.”

I held up my palms for her, and she immediately saw the radioactive sign on my hand.

Serenity: “What does this do?”

'' You should ask the Keller kid.”

Serenity: “Julian?”

'' If you listen really hard, I'm sure you can still hear him puking.”

She looked at me for a second, but then she started going over my body again. I'm glad I worked out regularly, because I wouldn't want to embarrass myself in front of this goddess. She took my left arm in her hands, and looked at the tattoo there. It resembled an explosion.

Serenity: “This one?”

'' Let's me knock shit out of my way.”

She walked behind me, and when her hands touched my back, I nearly lost it. Her hands were so soft. It had been so long since I was touched so carefully. I was used to an everyday struggle.

Serenity: “Wings... For flight?”

'' Yes.”

She ran her hand down the tattooed spine on my back and touched along it's edges.

Serenity: “What does this do?”

'' Agility. Flexibility. Stronger bones.”

She knelt down and ran her hands over the tattoos on the back of my legs.

Serenity: “Speed?”

'' Yes and I can jump really high.”

She got up and walked around me again. I lifted my other arm and showed her the many rings around my forearm.

'' Seismic tremors.”

I turned my head and showed her the little brain that was tattooed behind me ear.

'' Telepathy and telekinesis.”

Serenity: “You're very powerful.”

'' I'm still learning. Getting the tattoo doesn't mean shit if I can't control it.”

She looked into my eyes once more and then walked away from me. I wanted to reach out and pull her back to me, but that would have made me seem like a psycho.

I put my clothes back on and waited for them to tell me what was up.

Serenity: “You do need a lot of practice.”

'' What are you talking about? You didn't even see me use my powers.”

Serenity: “I could have killed you a billion times in the last five minutes. You don't know how to protect your mind.”

'' Bullshit. I would have felt you in my head.”

Serenity: “No you wouldn't have. I know exactly how you use your powers. Always on the offense, never on the defense. You never protect yourself, just use your powers like a battering ram.”

'' You don't know what you're talking about. I know when a telepath is in my mind.”

Serenity: “The only telepaths you would know were in your mind would be amateurs. They would just clunk around in your head and hope to find something.”

I was getting pissed off. She could see that, but if she really was in my mind, then she could feel it and would know how to attack me.

Serenity: “Care to do something about it?”

I lashed out at her. I sent the most powerful telepathic assault I could. A small smile crept on her face and then all I felt was pain.

Serenity: “Like I said. You're nothing but an amateur. We'll have to work on that.”

I tried to fight against her, but she wasn't having it. I increased my power, but I was no match for her. This group was very deceiving in their looks. She finally let up her assault, but my head was still ringing. I didn't know I had fallen to the ground, but I got up and faced her again. She didn't seem to want to fight anymore and that was all good for me. There was no way I could beat her. At least not yet.

Kevin: “We'll be in touch.”

Cessily kincaid

Gender: Female

Race: Caucasian

Height: 5'4”

Weight: 114 lbs.

Eyes: Silver with No Pupils

Hair: Red

'' Hi. My name is Cessily Kincaid. I would like to join your squad.”

Oh my god. Did I have to sound like such a robot. It's bad enough I was silver like one. Dammit.

'' Cessily Kincaid here. Reporting for duty.”

Ugh! I put my hand down and let it go back to its natural form. I left the bathroom and made my way to the Danger Room. Signs were posted all over for tryouts, and I wanted to check it out. I knew they wouldn't want me though. The other try-outs were probably in love with their powers. Myself on the other hand, I hated my powers. I looked like a damn tin can. I readied myself and walked through the doors of the Danger Room. I meekly walked to the center of the floor and introduced myself.

'' I'm Cessily Kincaid. I saw the poster for the try-outs.”

I recognized most of the kids on the panel... mostly because of gossip around the school.

Bobby: “We're glad you could make it Cessily. We've heard great things about you.”

'' I doubt it.”

Jubilee: “Seriously!... Why don't you show us what you can do.”

I let go of my inhibitions and just melted like I usually did. At first I just turned myself into a large puddle, but then I rose up and created a large metallic monster. I created blades on my arms and then even a metal ball with spikes. I went through many transformations to show them how fluid like my powers could be. I even scaled a wall to show them the extent of my powers. I was even impressed with myself for what I was able to do.

I changed back into my original form and that's when things got embarrassing. I was completely naked.

I hurriedly covered myself, but it was to late. Everyone had seen me. I was so embarrassed. I grabbed up my clothing, turned into a metal mass and got out of there as soon as possible.

I dressed in the girls bathroom and just looked at myself in the mirror. Why couldn't I turn my powers on and off like other people? I hated being a mutant. I HATED IT!


'' So you guys have a team? That's great.”

Jubilee: “Are you sure you want to do this Xander?”

'' Yeah. It's time for a change. I just can't be here anymore.”

Carson: “You're going to keep in touch right?”

'' Guys, I'm moving like around the corner.... It's not that far. It's a big house and you guys can come over whenever. I was actually going to give you all a spare key... You know in case you needed to get away.”

I handed them all out, but when I got to Jude I stopped. I had one for him, but I didn't know if he would take it. Everyone was looking back and forth between us and I'm sure they could see my dilemma. What the hell?! I tossed the key at him, but before it even got to him, it exploded in the air. My eyes followed the dust particles as they floated to the ground, and then I looked back up at Jude. He looked like he wanted me to just drop dead. I tried to regulate my breathing as I watched him walk away. He stormed out of the front door and I could almost feel myself about to cry. My friends were watching me, so I smiled for them and tried to get the conversation back to where it was going.

'' So who's going to help me move all the heavy shit?”

Everyone laughed and it made me feel good to get back into the groove of things. I really did want things to be okay with Jude, but he didn't want that or he just wasn't ready. I didn't know if he ever would be. I had hired a truck from U-Haul and basically just carted all my shit to the new house. I had acquired a lot of clothing and there was a lot of stuff I had furnished my room with. I noticed Jude watching me go back and forth a couple of times, but he never said or did anything. I really wanted to talk to him, but I didn't want to get him even more angry or make him uncomfortable. It took us most of the day to get shit together and by the time we made it to my new place, everyone was beat.


'' Yeah... This is it.”

Kevin: “Dude this place is fucking awesome.”

Carson: “That's for sure.”

I was happy they all liked it, because this place had cost my father a grip. I had intended to just rent it, but my father thought it was time for me to have something in my name. He had me take out a mortgage on the house and he said he'd pay the bill to build me up some credit. He had paid the lady who owned the house and extra $20,000 for the house and set her up to move back home to Georgia. I was very happy and I loved my new house. We started situating shit where I wanted it, and it took another three hours to get the house to look right. I kept changing my mind about placement, and we were almost all frustrated.

'' Should we order some pizza?”

Serenity: “Most definitely. I'm hungry as shit.”
'' Do you think we should invite Jude?”

Story: “I don't know if he'll come.”

Jamie: “Call him and ask.”

Story took out her cell phone and called Jude on the spot. She started talking to him and I could see her face go from sadness to anger. She excused herself from the room and we could hear her yelling at Jude in the next room. They must have been going back and forth because she was on the phone for what seemed like a long time. The rest of us were just looking uncomfortable, but we just waited for Story to come back. We all heard her practically scream “Fuck you too... Bye!” and she came back into the room.

Story: “He's not coming.”

I nodded my head and excused myself from all of them. I ran upstairs and just locked myself in my bedroom. I sat down on the bed and tried to calm down. I felt a few tears escape, but I quickly wiped them away. I just didn't know what to do. I got myself together and went back downstairs. Serenity was just getting off of the phone with the pizza guys and I sat back down.

Jamie: “You okay buddy?”

'' I'm fine. Just a little upset I guess.”

We hooked up the TV and basically just watched dumb ass shows. All of my utilities had been on for about a week, so we didn't have to watch basic shows. It was about 45 mintues when the doorbell rang and I jumped up to get the door. I had the money in my hand and when I opened the door, there was this awesome looking guy standing on my door step. He was of Latin decent and he had shoulder length hair. He had blue eyes with a purple tint and muscles from what I could see. He was carrying four large pizzas and two bottles of soda.

Guy: “You ordered?”

'' Yeah we did.”

Guy: “Cool. That's $45.70.”

I handed him $60 bucks and told him to keep the change.

Guy: “I didn't know anybody lived here.”

'' I just moved in today.”

Guy: “This place has been abandoned for a while.”

'' Yeah the lady who owned it sold it to my father. She was only here long enough to sell it or rent it out.”

Guy: “Cool... My name is Jolen Espinosa.”

'' Xander Wayde... It's nice to meet you.”

Jolen: “Same.”

We stood awkwardly for a minute and then he started backing off the steps.

Jolen: “I better get out of here. More pizzas to deliver.”

'' Okay cool... See you around.”

Jolen: “Yeah I hope so.”

I couldn't help but smile as I watched him walk away. I brought the pizzas back to everyone and we dug in. I didn't realize just how hungry I was until I started eating. I made sure that we saved enough food for Jude even though he hated me. Everyone chilled for a little bit longer and then they said their goodbyes. It was Tuesday, so I had to go register for classes tomorrow. I just hoped I was doing the right thing by starting over.

~ ~ ~

'' I have to wear a uniform? Are you serious?”

Mr. Rankin: “As a heart attack. Those are our rules.”

'' Geesh.”

Mr. Rankin: “So if you'll sign this form, you'll be a student at the Massachusetts Academy.”

I signed my name on the appropriate lines and shook the Principal's hand. He was a really cool guy and I knew how hard it was to get into a school like this. I walked back out into the hallway and into the “Wardrobe Room.” They had spare uniforms here for kids who thought they could get away with street clothes. I scanned the outfits before I put them on and burned away any impurities. Other people's stuff just did not sit right with me. I put on the uniform and when I turned around, Mr. Rankin was standing right behind me. He had a schedule in his hand and a couple of books in the other. He handed both to me and he unncessarily ran his hand over mine. I took a second look at him and noticed for the first time how attractive he was. He was definitely a little young to be anybodies principle. I was going to scan his mind, but he smiled at me and left the room. I wondered what his story was.

~ ~ ~

So my schedule sucked. I basically knew everything that I was supposed to be taking. Only two classes actually stood out and they were AP Economics and Advanced Physics.

Mrs. Ryan: “And you are?”

'' Xander Wayde. I just transferred here.”

Mrs. Ryan: “And you think you can mange my Physics class?”

'' Definitely!”

Mrs. Ryan: “Take a seat Mr. Wayde.”

I watched her sashay behind her desk and she took her seat. I walked to a seat towards the back and took out one of the textbooks Mr. McKeever gave me. I caught up with the class very quickly and by the end of the class, more than a few people were giving me the evil eye. I laughed to myself on the inside and just got my shit together and left. I filed out of class with everybody else and started looking for my next class. I had my head down and kept walking, so I wasn't even paying attention to where I was going. I finally found my next class on the small school map and right when I lifted my head, I ran into someone's chest. I stumbled back and fell to the ground. A bunch of people started laughing until they all noticed who I bumped into. I saw a hand reach down for me and I was helped to my feet. I looked up to thank the guy and noticed that it was Jolen.

'' Hey.”

Jolen: “Hey. I didn't expect to see you here.”

'' Yeah. I just transferred here.”

Jolen: “Cool.”

We both bent down and he helped me pick up all of my things. People had stared at us for a while, but then they got to going. I was looking at them go and then I noticed that they were getting away from three kids coming our way. All of them were equally attractive. Two girls and one guy. The guy had to be middle eastern, but he could almost pass for a Puerto Rican. He was attractive, but the scowl plastered on his face made him look very menacing. He had his hair styled into spiky locks and he was tall and lean, but still muscular. I looked to the next chick and she was also extremely beautiful. She was definitely Asian, and as I looked her up and down, I could see she had extremely long and sexy legs. She had long black hair and she was extremely exotic looking. The other girl was also very beautiful. She had long blonde hair and a very sexy body. She had most of her chest exposed and she exuded confidence. They stopped right behind Jolen and looked at me like I was insignificant.

Girl #1: “Who's he?”

Jolen: “A friend of mine.”

Girl #2: “Where do you know him from?”

Jolen: “Why do you need to know? What's with the twenty questions?”

Guy: “We just wanted to know... Calm down.”

Jolen: “Whatever.”

'' I'll catch you around Jolen.”

Jolen: “Wait... Xander. Let me introduce you all.”

He pointed to the Chinese girl and pointed her out as Ziyi Quin. The guy's name was Jon Kasiya and the blonde' name was Regan Wyngarde. I watched all of them carefully. To be completely honest, they all looked a little unhinged. I said my hellos to all of them and then I left. I made it to my class on time and then to the rest of my classes respectively. Thankfully the day had ended on a good note and all of my teachers seemed to like me. I was walking home and was halfway there when a sleek black Lincoln Townhouse pulled up next to me. The driver's window rolled down slowly and I saw Jolen's face come into view. He was smiling widely, but I was distracted by Regan staring a hole into me. I wanted to scowl back at her, but Jolen might think it was meant for him.

Jolen: “Hey what's up?”

'' Just walking home.”

Jolen: “You need a ride?”

'' No thanks. Only a few more streets to go.”

Jolen: “You could save yourself the trouble.”

'' I'm fine, but thanks for the offer.”

He turned his head towards the backseat for a moment and then he opened up his door and hopped out of the car. Jon got out of his seat in the back and got into the driver's seat. He sped off like he was in a race car and I turned to watch Jolen curiously.

Jolen: “Shall we?”

'' What are you doing?”

Jolen: “Walking you home.”

'' I don't need an escort.”

I started walking away from him, but he quickly caught up to me. He didn't say anything for a while, but I could tell he wanted to. He waited a few more minutes, but then I guess his resolve broke.

Jolen: “These streets aren't as safe as they seem. You should be careful.”

'' I'm a big guy and I can handle myself.”

Jolen: “You don't know this place like I do Xander. You should be careful.”

'' Careful of who? You?”

He didn't say anything and he turned his face away from me. I wanted to find out what he was talking about, but I wasn't going to invade his mind. He kept stride with me and I was in front of my house in no time. I was surprised to see the Lincoln in front of my house, but I didn't think much about it.

'' Well this is my stop.”

Jolen: “I remember.... Just listen to what I said Xander.”

'' Bye Jolen.”

I went to turn around, but before I could, his hand shot out and grabbed my hand. I jolt went up my hand and throughout my body. I wanted to take my hand away, but he had a very firm grip on me. I looked him in his eyes and I tried to figure out what he was thinking. I sent out a small mental probe, but his thoughts were being screamed out loud.

Jolen: “Just listen to me Jude. Please! I wouldn't want you to get hurt, so just stay away.

I caught his thoughts in a quick flicker and I knew he wasn't aware that I knew what was going on. He slowly let go of my hand and I walked backwards to my door. I looked towards the Lincoln and all three of his friends were standing outside the car. I quickly unlocked my door and got inside. I bolted the door behind me and just tried to catch my breathing. Something was going down tonight and Jolen wanted me to stay away.

~ ~ ~

Regan: “What did you tell him?”

'' It's none of your concern Regan. Back off!”

Regan: “Did you tell him about tonight?”

'' I said BACK OFF!”

I was slammed into the car and a tiny blade was held against my neck.

Jon: “Don't make me kill you Jolen. If tonight gets fucked up because of you, then it'll be me and you. Don't let that kid get in your head.”

'' Get that fucking knife off of me Jon.”

I rubbed my neck as he took the blade away and I looked at Regan with hate in my eyes. I looked back towards Xander's house, but he didn't seem to notice we were still outside.

'' Let's go before he comes back out or sees us through a window.”

Regan: “He won't be seeing anything. I made sure of it.”

Evil bitch!

~ ~ ~

I was still looking out the window even though they had pulled off right after I got in the house. I hoped that Jolen didn't come back because I didn't know how to deal with him.

The hours slowly crept by and like Jolen asked, I stayed in the house. I just hoped that what they were doing wasn't as bad as I was imagining.


Julian: “A training session already? It's only been a few days.”

'' If we're going to be an efficient team, we need to be ready at the drop of a dime. Go get your training uniforms on.”

We were holding an immediate team meeting. We got class schedules for everybody and it made it easy to set up scheduled meetings that didn't interfere with anybody's classes. Story, Serenity, Jude, Carson, Jubilee and Cessily were all still in class. Eric should have been here, but he hadn't showed up yet. I was definitely pissed because he was showing us that he wasn't a team player. Serenity had faith in him, but I just didn't see it yet.

Sooraya: “Where is Xander?”

Kevin: “He's no longer a student at this school.”

Victor: “Really? Where did he go?”

'' He transferred to the Massachusetts Academy.”

Victor: “Oh.”

Jamie: “Oh what?”

Julian: “We've just heard things about that place. Bad things.”

Kevin: “Like what?”

Julian: “We've heard things about some of the kids there.... One group in particular.”

Kevin: “What about them?”

Sooraya: “Apparently, there's a girl among them who can do things. Do things in your mind. Make you see things that aren't real.”

Jamie: “What about the others?”

Julian: “One of the guys, he used to be an assassin. At least that's what we heard. He's supposed to be super fast or something, but apparently he can do magic too.”

Victor: “We never heard anything about the other guy, but to be with them, he must be just as bad.”

Julian: “The last girl.... She's Chinese. Apparently, her ancestors held the Power of the Iron Fist. We researched their lineage, but she didn't have to go through any of those trials. She's a mutant as far as we know. She just has all their powers and strengths. She's like a super human, but other than that, she can heal herself, merge her mind with someone to gain all their memories and knowledge, she can fight under any circumstances. She can channel her energy into weapons or even form energy blades and weapons. They're all extremely dangerous.”

'' Where did you guys find out all this information?”

Julian: “In places like these, you have to keep your ears to the streets. People talk and those kids aren't shy about using their powers.”

Kevin: “Wouldn't they be hated at their school? For being mutants?”

Sooraya: “The Massachusetts Academy is basically another Xavier Institute. They don't have all mutants their, but the majority of the students there are mutants. Those four are hated, but that's because they scare everyone. Even the Principal is a mutant.”

Jamie: “We'll have to tell Xander. Do you know their names?”

Victor: “We could never find out their names. Not all of them anyway.... The one guys name is Jolen though.”

I thought to myself for a while, but we still had a job to do.

'' Come on.... Let's get started.”

I looked up to the Control Room and Alani was putting in different commands and mission objectives. We had Hank show her how to work everything, and I knew she was going to put in some interesting stuff. She had on her training uniform and she would be joining us as soon as she was done. We definitely wanted her on the team, she had a great personality, but we were going to try and see if she had more power or at least if she could be more versatile. She joined us a few minutes later and we were all ready to start. Eric still hadn't shown up and I was getting even more upset. We all heard the door slide open and I was expecting to see Eric, but it was Bobby.

Bobby: “I got out of class early. I didn't want to miss the first meeting.”

Instead of lining up with the other trainees, Bobby joined the line we had formed. He wasn't really part of the group, but he had extensive training, and he'd be a great team member.

Kevin: “Have you seen Eric? He was supposed to be here.”

Bobby: “I figured that.... I saw him a few minutes ago. He was flirting with some chick. I asked him if he was coming to training, but he basically blew me off.”

'' Whatever... Forget about him.”

Training was fucking brutal! It honestly was. We started off simply enough, but once Logan and Storm came, training took on a completely different intensity. I was sruprised to see Logan dragging Eric by his neck and to be completely honest, I wanted him off the team. But once everyone got out of class and joined up, we worked our asses off. Logan had us use our powers to the full extent and Storm taught us control at the peak of our powers. We still had to see how the new team members worked out, so after a while, we stopped our free practice and set up a simulation for them to go into. Alani had basically been off to the side for the majority of this practice, but we had her join her friends in the simulation. I watched Eric as he tried to interact with the others, but they didn't really seem to want to associate with him. He didn't look upset, but I could tell he was frustrated with the situation. I walked over to him and pulled him to the side.

Eric: “What is it?”

'' You seem like you're upset about something.”

Eric: “I'm fine.”

'' Don't alienate yourself from them or us. We're trying to do something good here.”

Eric: “Whatever. They don't even know me, but they've already made up their minds about me.”

'' Then break the mold they put you in. Be everything that they think you aren't.”

Eric: “I hear you.”

'' And when we schedule a practice.... Make sure you show up. You made a commitment to this team and you need to respect that.”

Eric: “I will.”

'' Go line up.”

The new recruits lined up and the rest of us went up to the Control Room. Jamie put in an easy enough situation and we let them at it. It definitely seemed like Julian was the leader of the group and I was wondering if that might grwo to be a problem. I noticed Eric was standing off to the side, but he joined up with the team even though he never talked. The simulation started and the action began.


Julian: “Where the hell are we?”

Sooraya: “It looks like some kind of forest.”

'' We should find some cover... We're out in the open.”

We all crouched behind a dead tree and started to formulate a plan.

Julian: “We need some type of surveilance.... Need to figure out where everyone is.”

Cessily: “I could do that, but this forest is way to big. There's no way I'd be able to check everything.”

Alani: “Sooraya?”

Sooraya: “I'm not sure if I have that kind of control. I could float into the sky, but like Cessily said, there's only so much I can cover.”

Victor: “I can get up into the trees and camoflauge, but that's pretty slow work."

Julian: “Eric... Any tatts that can help out?”

'' Just the flight tattoo... I guess I can scan with telepathy, but that power isn't all that strong. I might alert them to us instead of finding them.”

Julian: “Dammit!”

'' We should just walk until we find something. Splitting up now just wouldn't be a good idea.”

Julian: “You're right. Let's get going.”

We walked for about an hour before we saw any sign of life.... Other than the trees, things had been relatively quiet. I was getting bored with all of this shit, but then we came across what seemed to be an old camp. There were tents set up, and the remains of a fire, but no signs of life. We broke up and basically started looking for any signs of existence.

Sooraya: “I think I may have found something.”

We all went to the tent Sooraya was checking out and kneeled down beside her. There were several pictures of a team of guys... They didn't look like military, but they were decked out in armored clothing. They had AK-47's at their feet and there was a pistol in each of their hands. We were all looking at the pictures, when all of a sudden there was the sound of a gun cocking behind us.

Man: “Don't any of you fucking move.”

Alani: “We're not hear to hurt you.”

Man: “Shut the hell up. Come out of the tent slowly.”

Cessily and Victor were far enough into the tent to where they weren't spotted. I figured none of us would be here if had seen them. She melted into a puddle of metal and Victor camoflauged himself to the tent and just stayed hidden. We each stepped out of the tent and looked into the face of one of the guys from the picture. He was tall and looked to be Latino. He was about 6'2” and maybe 220 lbs., most of which had to be muscle. He was an extremely intimidating man, but the only thing that made him look approachable was his warm honey eyes. He had scratches all over his face and it looked like he had been running for his life.

Man: “Who the hell are you people?”

Alani: “We're students... We're on a camping trip.”

Man: “You expect me to believe that shit?”

Julian: “She's telling the truth. We're students.”

Man: “What are your names?”

'' I'm Eric. That's Julian, Sooraya, and that's Alani. And you?”

Man: “I'm Red Dragon. I'm a mercenary. But, you can call me Blake.”

'' The men from the pictures?”

Blake: “Gone... They were taken.”

'' By who?”

Blake: “By what is the question. We were camping here and then all I heard was screaming. I had turned in early that night. When I finally came out of my bunk, they were gone.”

Julian: “Did you see what took them?”

Blake: “Only a flash. They were huge. Maybe up to six feet each. They had the heads and tails of wolves, but the bodies of men. But I could see colorful lights coming from them. I know I sound crazy, but it's what I saw.”

Julian: “We believe you.”

Blake: “Where's the rest of your crew? I can't believe only you three came out here.”

'' We have two other kids with us, but they....”

Julian: “They're mutants... We all are.”

I never saw a gun pointed in my face so quickly. I knew he would react like that.

Blake: “You freaks. What did you do with my men?”

Julian: “Dude calm the fuck down! We just got here.”

Blake: "Bullshit. You did something with them.”

All of a sudden, a pink tongue shot past us and wrapped itself around the gun. Blake was just as suprised as we were, and he let the gun slip from his fingers. The gun flew into the air and Victor was right behind it. He landed soundly on his feet and the gun fell swiftly into his hands. He went to point it at Blake, but I stopped him. I didn't want to scare this guy anymore than necessary.

'' Listen... We really are just here to help. We didn't know anything until you told us what happened. I swear!”

Blake: “Say if I was to believe you, and you weren't the ones who took them... Would you help me find my men?”

Cessily: “Yes.”

She stepped out of the tent and joined our group. His eyes focused on her and never left.

Julian: “Let's head out.”

We started walking and hoped to hell we were going in the right direction. I didn't have any tattoos to advance my senses, so I couldn't even track them. We kept walking and finally we came across something. There was a small wallet that had been dropped and Blake rushed over to it.

Blake: “This was Raiden's. He carried this thing with him everywhere. Pictures of his daughter in here.”

Cessily: “We must be going in the right direction.”

'' Let's keep moving.”

Sooraya: “Let me try something... Stand very still.”

I didn't understand what she was doing when she sprinted away from us, but almost immediately, she disappeared. There were sand particles everywhere and slowly they pulled together into a tightly formed twister. She was able to move very quickly and she was out of our sight in seconds. About twenty minutes later, we could Sooraya heading back towards us and before she got to close, she formed herself and stopped right in front of us.

Sooraya: “I spotted a group of men about three miles from here. It's dangerous getting there though.”

Blake: “Did you see any of my men?”

Sooraya: “Sorry... No. I saw the men you described though. But they're pretty normal... The heads you saw were hollowed skins.”

He looked so crestfallen, but we couldn't dwell on that.

Cessily: “We should keep moving.”

Victor: “We need some kind of plan.”

'' Let's get some distance out of the way.”

Victor: “They could have traps around their perimeter.”

We all turned to look at Sooraya and she must have been expecting the question.

Sooraya: “I wouldn't know. I didn't get close enough.”

Alani: “Let's just get going. How much time do we have for this anyway?”

Walking through the forest was long and tedious. There was hardly any talking as we got closer and closer to our destination. It took us about two more hours to finally reach the point where Sooraya stopped. We were all quiet suprised to find that the clearing was empty.

Sooraya: “This was definitely the spot. I know that for sure.”

It was about 200ft. to the clearing she had seen, so I started making my way there. I was halfway there, when all hell broke loose. I was immediately blasted in the chest and I flew back about ten feet. I tried to fight the pain, but I blacked out.



I watched as Eric flew into a large tree and disappeared behind some underbrush. I wanted to run to him, but the enemy was coming out strong. There were about twenty men and they were all wearing hollowed out wolf skins. They were all heavily muscled and they were holding very futuristic stalves. They all had menacing looks on their faces and they started to crowd around us.

Man #1: “Kill them!”

Man #2: “They're kids...”

Man #3: “Not him... He must have been with the others.”

Blake: “Where are my men?”

Man #1: “We'll take you to them.”

He pointed his staff at Blake and fired. I watched as he was disentegrated into a billion pieces. I screamed in horror.

Man #2: “Get them.”

Man #3: “What about the mercenaries?”

Man #2: “We'll deal with them later. Attack!!!”

I ran.

I ran through the trees and felt them crumble behind me.

I was so scared.



I jumped into the air and came down on the first guy that I saw. He crumpled beneath my feet and I moved onto the next guy. There were beams of light being shot all around me, but I tried to avoid them. I shot out my tongue at the closest guy and wrapped it around his leg and pulled. He fell to the ground and I pulled him towards me. I got on top of him and started punching the shit out of him. He was dazed for a second, but he managed to grab his stalf and he hit me with it. I rolled off of him and managed to get up and run just as he fired several energy bolts at me. I was glad I didn't get hit by them, because I didn't know what kind of effects it would have. I ran into the trees and camoflauged into them. The guy who I had been fighting stalked in after me and it was like taking candy from a baby. I climbed up a tree and then flipped off and onto his neck. He tried to struggle, but I tightened my legs around his throat until he passed out. He fell to the ground and I again scaled the tree. It was time to see who else I could snag. I let my tongue fly and grabbed up the first guy I saw.

'' Dude don't struggle. You're only going to make it worse.”

Man: “You'll pay for this you little brat.”

'' Whatever. Tell yourself that while you sleep.”

I slammed his head into the trunk of the tree and watched as his eyes fluttered close.

'' Like taking candy from a baby.”

My gloating earned me a shot in the back. I screamed in pain as I crashed to the ground. I tried to get up, but I had no arms.

'' What the hell?”

My body was disentegrating in front of me and there was nothing I could do to stop it.

'' Help!!!”

The last thing I saw was Sooraya scream out my name, then all I saw was black.


'' Victor!!!”

I watched as my friend died right in front of my eyes. Why would they put us through this torture?

'' You loathesome creatures. You foul beasts.”

I let my anger take me to a place I rarely went. I took on my sand form faster than I ever had before. I turned into the storm few had ever wanted to see. I closed in a group of enemies and let them see their end was near.

Man #1: “Oh my god. Run!”

'' Running will get you nowhere!''

They blasted at me with their weapons.

Man #2: “Kill her.”

Man #3: “She's to dangerous. We need to find a way out of here.”

With little force, those stalves were sliced to smithereens. One guy tried to advance on me, but his arm was cut up so bad, he fell down screaming.

'' You can not escape my wrath!''

I let them feel how angry I was. I let my emotions take over. Die they would not. Suffer they would.


Sooraya. A force to be reckoned with. But that was the least of my concerns. I had my own problems.

Man #1: “Come on Kid. You can't seriously think that you can beat us.”

Man #2: “You're just a snot-nosed kid.”

'' That's where you made your first mistake... Thinking I'm just a little kid. The second was thinking I'd lose to an idiot like you.”

They fired at me relentlessly, but I created a shield that protected me. They just didn't know what they were getting into. I expanded my shield and knocked all of them off of their feets. They got up quickly enough, but I was already on the move. I slammed the first guy that got up back into the ground and watched him pass out. I picked him up and slammed him down into the ground a few times... Just for good measure.

Man #3: “You think taking out one of us enough?”

'' I was just getting started!”

With a smile on my face, I unleashed my energy on them. One of the men jumped into the air and started firing at me. I deflected all the energy shots and swatted him away like he was a bug. He flew away into the distance. I doubted he would be okay after that. The next guy ran at me, but I didn't even let him get close. I telekinetically extended my limbs and beat the shit out of him. The next man tried to run, but I wasn't even having that... I grabbed onto his legs and flipped him into the air. I walked over to him and lifted him up to where his eyes were level wih mine.

'' Where is my friend?”

Man #1: “He's dead... You'll all be dead soon enough.”

'' You better tell me what I want to know...”

Man #1: “Or what?”

'' Hmmm... The blood will rush to your brain and you'll die.”

Man #1: “You're bluffing.”

'' Try me.”

I could see his face getting more and more red. He started to sweat, but I didn't let him down.

'' You going to tell me what's up?”

Man #1: “Fine!... Fine! I'll tell you everything!”

'' That's more like it.... Where is my friend?”

Man #1: “Our weapons send you to a secret location. We have teleporters, but that's the only way to get there.”

'' That sounds like bullshit to me.”

Man #1: “I'm telling you the truth. Please let me down.”

'' No. I think you should stay up there.”

I started to walk away, but I heard him scream after me.

Man #1: “Die!”

I felt the shock of the energy beam before I felt the pain.

I felt my body leaving me, but I didn't know how to stop it.

Why me?”


'' JULIAN!!!”

I couldn't believe what happened to him.

'' Bring him back.”

I created a hammer out of my fist and slammed it into the chest of the guy I was fighting. He crumpled immediately. I created a sword out of my other hand and extended my body outwards. I fought as many as I could, but they were soon getting the best of me. I was taking to many hits, and I crashed to the ground.

Man #1: “You thought you could beat us... You've got to be kidding me.”

Man #2: “Send her to the others.”

I was blasted in the chest, but I wasn't harmed.

Man #2: “What the hell?”

'' One thing you should know... Most things don't affect me. Not your little weapons, not your fists, nothing you have can hurt me.”

I turned my fist into a large spiked ball and sent it at the closest guy. He was sleeker and more agile then the rest. He dived out of the way and fired several more energy blasts at me. I jumped aside, and tired to slam him into the ground. He barely escaped, but he kicked away my arm and did several flips away from me. I was going to go after him, but another one of the goons had come around my back. I created a blade out of my arm and before he could even attack, I had sliced his weapon in half and kicked him in his chest. He fell to the ground, but he wasn't done yet.

Man #1: “You will die Child.”

I looked at him with disgust until his hands started to glow.

Man #1: “You never should have come here.”

I saw the power leave his hands, but I was powerless to stop them. I dodged out of the way just in time and his energy flew over my head. I looked behind me just as his power hit one of his men, and they instantly turned to dust.

Man #1: “No!!!”

'' Whew!”

I jumped off of the ground and ran at him as fast as I could. I let my body go in many directions and soon I was a 10ft. tall metal monster. He looked on in horror and I could see the fear growing in his eyes. I reached down and grabbed him around his neck and then slammed him into the ground. He passed out, but as soon as I was going to revert back to normal, I was kicked in my side. I didn't really feel it, but that guy from earlier definitely had my attention.

'' You just don't learn do you.”

He ran at me full speed and then jumped into the air. I tried to swat at him, but he just landed on my arm and kept moving towards me. I let my arm gel around his foot and he fell through. He was dangling from a hole in my arm and I took advantage of it. I cocked my other arm back as far as I could and sent it crashing into his face. Done deal!


'' I can't be weak forever.”

I turned around.

I wouldn't leave my friends when they needed me the most.

Everyone else was so strong... So confident. I'd show them I had that same fire burning inside of me.

I had almost made it back to the clearing, when I was tackled to the ground. I was dazed for a second, but then I looked up and saw a foot coming at my face. I rolled out of the way, but he still grazed my shoulder. I was getting up, when all of a sudden, somebody was pulling me up by my hair. I screamed out in pain, but the man just laughed.

Man: “You kids are so weak.”

'' I'm not weak!”

I swung my elbow into his ribs as hard as I could. He instantly let go of my hair and I fell to the ground. I scrambled away from him and faced him again. He put his fists up and started advancing on me.

'' I really wouldn't do that if I were you.”

He cocked his arm back and punched at me. I couldn't stop it. The scream that pierced the air would haunt me forever.

Man: “My arm... My arm. My arm, it's gone.”

'' I'm so sorry.”

I sent my foot flying into his face and he crashed to the ground unconscious.

'' Still not done yet....”

I started running again. I had almost made it to the clearing, I could Sooraya's dust form and I could see Cessily fighting in the distance, but I couldn't see anyone else. My foot had just hit the clearing, when I was blasted to the ground. My back was stinging so bad, but that was the least of my problems. My body was disappearing.....

'' Sooraya HELP ME!!!”

~ ~ ~

I wasn't dead.

My body was killing me though.

I felt someone picking me up and I was slammed against a wall.

I tried to open my eyes, but they were so cloudy.

I felt straps being placed around my wrists.

Man #1: “She's not going anywhere... Let's go.”

I tried to blink the confusion out of my eyes.

Victor: “Alani.”

'' Victor?”

Julian: “And me.”

'' Where are we?”

Julian: “Some underground joint. We got teleported here.”

'' I'm so sorry you guys. I was coming to get you, but I got caught. I'm so sorry.”

Julian: “Alani it's fine. Where are the others?”

'' Still up top I guess. I saw Sooraya and Cessily still fighting, but I couldn't get to them in time.”

Victor: “Eric?”

'' I didn't see him... I'm so sorry I ran you guys. If I had never run... I could have helped.”

Julian: “It's fine... We just need to figure out how to get out of here.”

My eyes finally cleared up and I was able to look around the room. We were in a dimly lit area and we weren't the only ones in the room. I scanned around at all the men, and spotted Blake. He was surrounded by men who had on the same kind of military clothing, so they must have been his team. My eyes finally roamed over to Victor and Julian, and what I saw made me want to scream. They had been beaten up. Julian's eye was completely swolen, and his lip was busted. Victor wasn't as bad, but he had blood coming out of his mouth, and he had a large gash across his forehead.

'' What did they do to you guys?”
Victor: “Nothing we couldn't handle.”

I had had it. I quickly phased through the bands on my arm, and the ribbons fell to my feet.

'' We're getting out of here.”

I managed to get all of them down, and then we were on the move. We quickly tiptoed to what was the only exit, and I poked my head out to check things out. Everything was clear, so I directed everyone to follow me and we got going. We had almost made it to another door, when two guys came out and stared directly at us.

Man #1: “Fire.”

Man #2: “Don't have to tell me twice.”

They shot bolt after bolt at us, but I knew Victor would create a shield. I turned to look at him, and he was reaching for my hand. He yanked me over to where he was, and we hid behind part of the wall.

'' Why didn't you create a shield Julian?”

Julian: “They gave me a power reducer. I'm totally weak right now.”

'' What about Victor?”

Julian: “They didn't bother.”

I turned to look at Victor, but he had disappeared. I was about to yell for him, when all of a sudden, the firing stopped.

Victor: “Let's go.”

I looked at the two guys sprawled on the floor, and ran from behind the wall. We didn't stop as we made our way to the surface. We were only a few hundred feet from where we originally were, so we met up with the others fairly quick. Eric was up and he had two guys at his feet.

Sooraya: “What happened to you all?”

Victor: “It's a long story, but Loa saved us.”

I thought I was mistaken at first, but when a gun cocked behind me, I thought I was day-dreaming.

Eric: “Dude what the hell? We just saved your asses.”

Drake: “And I thank you for that... Really, but that doesn't change anything.”

'' What kind of bounty hunter are you?”

Drake: “The worst kind... For you that is.”

I couldn't believe this way happening.

Drake: “Take out the Muslim first.”

They all pointed their guns at Sooraya and fired. She screamed out, but the bullets never made it to her. There was a shield of green psionic energy completely surrounding her.

Julian: “Back to one hundred percent. Drake... You fucked up.”

I watched as my friends... my team members, dispatched Drake and his men. I couldn't help them much now, but I'd find a way to be a true asset to this team.


It had been almost a week since the incident with Jolen happened. I had been completely avoiding him. I didn't know what he was involved in, but I knew I didn't want any part of it. My classes for the most part had been okay... My teachers really tried to put me on the spot a lot, but I was well informed in all of my subjects. It was also kind of strange walking around the school and seeing Jolen and his group. He usually didn't try to interact with me when he was with them, but when he was alone, he would try and catch up with me. Thankfully I had been able to disappear before he got to me every time. I hadn't really made any friends here, which kind of sucked, but I couldn't change that. All of this was going on in my mind during Lunch. I had three books spread out in front of me and I was trying to finish my Advanced Physics homework. I was finally working out this problem, when a shadow was cast over my books. I looked up and Jolen was looking down at me.

Jolen: “Can I sit?”

'' Umm... I guess.... Sure.”

Jolen: “Cool.”

He sat down opposite me and for a second he was just silent. I expected him to say something, but he never did.

'' So... What's up?”

Jolen: “You tell me.”

'' What do you mean?”

Jolen: “You just seem like you've been avoiding me.”

'' I don't know what you're talking about. We didn't have all that much interraction before.”

Jolen: “That's true, but still... I'd see you for like a second, and when I blinked, you'd be gone.”

'' Classes are keeping me busy.”

Jolen: “I've been wanting to talk to you... About the other night.”

'' What about it?”

Jolen: “I didn't mean to scare you... Or make you nervous.”

'' You didn't.”

Jolen: “Are you sure?”

'' I'm positive.”

Jolen: “Whew... That's good.”

'' So how much money did you guys get for those weapons?”

Jolen: “What do you mean?”

'' The night you came over to my house, you told me to stay away... That same night some company was broken into. All of their experimental weapons were stolen.”

Jolen: “That doesn't have anything to do with me.”

'' Bullshit!”

Jolen: “It's none of your concern Xander, so butt out.”

'' You're right... It's not my concern. Why don't you just keep your distance?”

Jolen: “Xander...”

I gathered up my things and stuffed them into my bookbag. I went to leave the table, but he grabbed my arm and held me there.

Jolen: “Don't be difficult Xander... I'm trying to be your friend, but you need to learn to look the other way.”

'' Take your damn hands off of me now.”

Jolen: “Xander....”

'' Wrong answer!”

I jumped over the table and kicked him square in the chest. He flew to the ground, and I straightened up before I hit the floor. He skidded to a stop a few feet away, but he got up almost instantly.

Jolen: “Dude what the fuck?”

He ran at me full speed and attempted to punch me in the face. I was quick enough to avoid it, and I punched him in the sides repeatedly. He backed off and I sent my fist crashing into his jaw. I saw a little bit of blood escape his mouth, but he swiped it away with his tongue.

Jolen: “You're starting to piss me of Xander.”

'' Just stay the fuck away from me.”

I turned away from him, but his friend Jon was right in front of me. I didn't know what he was thinking, but I saw a tiny blade flash between his fingers and then he came at me. This guy was fast as fuck and he had cut open my shirt before I even knew what happened. He had a tiny smile on his face, but that didn't make him any less menacing. He came at me again, but this time I was ready. He went to kick me, but I grabbed his foot and kicked him as hard as I could in the stomach. He fell back, but he saved himself from hitting the ground, but doing a back-handspring at the last minute. I kept my eyes on his hands, but instead of just the one blade, seven more appeared. He ran at me full force and trying to hit me however he could. I used my arm to block once, and the blades on his right arm left four long gashed on my skin. I recoiled in pain, but that didn't stop his assault. I was almost to the point of using my powers, when I heard Jolen from behind me.

Jolen: “Jon stop it now.”

Jon: “Fuck that... He doesn't know who he's messing with.”

Jolen: “Jon back the hell off!”

He looked from me to Jolen, and then back again. He must have seen something in Jolen's eyes, because the blades steathly disappeared from sight. I actually had to stop my powers from immediately healing, which was leaving me in excruciating pain.

Jolen: “I'll take you to the Nurse.”

'' Just stay the fuck away from me!”

I grabbed up my bad with my good arm and ran out of the cafeteria. I couldn't get home fast enough and by the time I did, my wounds had already healed. There was still a slight tingling in my arm, but that was because of not letting it heal faster. I was pacing back and forth when all of a sudden there was a knock on my door. I slowly walked to the door and when I looked into the peephole, Jolen was standing on my stoop. I wanted to blast him to Hades, but I just kept my door locked instead. I ignored him completely and went upstaoirs to my bedroom. I peeked out of my windows until I was sure he was gone. I breathed a sigh of relief and then collapsed onto my bed. Would my life ever get any easier?

~ ~ ~

'' What's been up?

Story: “Just trying to build this team. The new guys are pretty cool.

'' That's cool. I'm happy to hear that.

Story: “How's school?

'' Same shit. Different location. I got into a fight at school today.

Story: “With who?

'' Some guy named Jolen and this other guy Jon.

Story: “Jolen? I've heard about him.

'' You have?

Story: “Yeah... He's supposed to be part of this really bad group at school. They're all mutants I guess.

'' I should have known... Story?

Story: “Yeah?

'' How is Jude?

Story: “He's doing okay I guess. He hasn't really been talking to me. I guess I pissed him off.

'' Oh.

Story: “It's whatever. But, I gotta go. I have class in a little bit.”

'' Bye Story. Love you.

Story: “Bye Jude.

I hung up with Story and got back to my homework. I was back at school and the Library was the only place I could find solice. Every time I walked down the halls, everyone just stared at me. I caught sight of Jolen at times, but he didn't try to rush up to me as usual. To be quite honest, I was suprised that I wasn't suspended. Talk about our fight was all over the school, not to mention the teachers and such that were in the cafeteria at the time. I had gotten all of my homework done and now I was just catching up on some reading. The bell for 4th period rung, so I gathered up my stuff and go ready to go. I turned around and Jolen was right in front of me. I was prepared to fight again, but he put up his hands and backed away.

Jolen: “Didn't know that was you.”

'' No problem. Excuse me.”

Jolen: “I'd like to start over.”

'' Why are you so adamant about us being friends Jolen?”

Jolen: “I'd rather have you as a friend, than an enemy.”

'' I don't want to be your enemy...”

Jolen: “Or my friend?”

'' I just want to be happy. I don't want to be in the middle of anyone else's drama.”

Jolen: “That's fair.”

'' Excuse me. I have to go to class.”

I left and the rest of the day passed uneventfully.

~ ~ ~

I know this chapter ends awkwardly and it's not written the best, but I really wanted to get a new chapter out, while adding the new characters. I understand if you don't like the chapter, but it is a work in progress.... So for anyone who hasn't joined the Yahoo! Group it's www.groups.yahoo.com/highschoolx