July, 2. 8:00 A.M.
A white-haired young man stood in the middle of a big room. He wore a form fitting green suit, with a darkened arrow on his chest, pointing towards his head, and two arrows pointing downwards sprouting from it, each on a different leg. His eyes were the same shade of green as the suit.
A group of scientists watched from a raised platform, protected by bulletproof glass. One of the scientists – with the same eye color as the boy – smiled at him. The boy waved.
“Dmitri.” One of the scientists spoke into a microphone, his voice booming in the room. “Are you ready?”
Dmitri nodded once.
Dmitri’s surroundings blurred and then took form. The grey walls gave way to jungle trees, the floor to ground and vegetation, the roof to striking blue skies. Dmitri took in his surroundings, as some leaves behind rattled. He turned around, startled. A man in military uniform sprang out, wielding a machine gun. He pulled the trigger, aiming at him. Dmitri leapt out of the way, landing on his hands and springing towards a tree, as hot lead whizzed around him. He hit the ground, rolling behind a tree. Bullets hit the bark, chipping away at it. The darkened arrows on his suit began lightning up as soon as Dmitri had started moving, starting from the ones on his legs.
He took a deep breath, preparing himself. He couldn’t fight from where he was standing, atleast not yet. He jumped and grabbed onto a branch, pulling himself up. The machine gun started again, bullets destroying branches around him. The boy ran along a branch, and jumped onto another tree, the branch behind him destroyed. This time he didn’t give the soldier any chances and jumped down upon him, his foot connecting with his face. The man fell to the ground, unconscious.
Dmitri took a breath and looked down. The light on the arrows had reached his waist. Two more soldiers, apart from each other, sprang up, firing at him. He ran, dodging the bullets, leaping out of the way, none of them able to hit the acrobatic boy. The light reached his neck. He felt energy emerging from his finger tips.
He stopped, looking at the soldiers. They looked back, perplexed. Dmitri had his arms crossed, palms open. When the firing started again, he jumped up, his arms releasing. A blast of green energy, shaped like an arrow, shot out of each hand, and hit each soldier dead in the chest. They both fell over.
Dmitri relaxed for a second, as one of the soldiers aimed at him with a handgun. The boy leapt to the side and swung his arm, a green arrow whizzing through the air and slicing the gun in half.
He meant to say something to the soldier, but he was gone, along with the trees and the sky, the room swimming back in.
A scientist overhead scribbled furiously. The one with the green eyes smiled at him again, encouragingly. He smiled back.
“Good job, Dmitri.” Said another scientist, over the microphone. “We’ll pass on to the next test.”
An opening slid on the wall opposite to him. A strange being walked into the room. It looked like a girl, but…
“Dmitri, meet Subject 101.” He said. “Subject 101 is made from an elastic, indestructible goo. She is your next test.”
The opening closed. “U-uh, my next test?” He spoke nervously, looking away from the subject and at the scientists. While he spoke, a pink tendril formed out of the subject’s arm and stretched all the way to him. “She’s indestructible, isn’t that a little—” The tendril slammed into Dmitri, sending him to the floor.
Dmitri got up, the air buffeted out of him. “…unfair.” The green-eyed scientist frowned, worried.
He looked across the room at his opponent. A smile was plastered on her face. This only worried Dmitri more.
He took to his feet, running at her, his arms swinging and shooting arrows. The Subject put her other arm in front of her and formed a wall, blocking his shots.
That’s not good. Dmitri thought as he nimbly dodged the tendrils and fought back. The arrows on his suit slowly depleted as he used up his energy.
The wall didn’t show any signs of tear. Gotta think around it. Arching his arm back and releasing a shot mid-way through the swing, the arrow curved around the wall and hit. The girl shifted her other arm into a tendril and swung at him.
It doesn’t hurt her. What do I— A tendril wrapped around his foot and pulled, his thoughts interrupted. His back hit the floor and he felt himself being dragged across the ground.
Without time to fully form an arrow, Dmitri pointed forward, his hand shaped like a gun, and released a small blast out of his fingertip, digging into the girl’s eye.
“Ow!” She exclaimed, releasing Dmitri and rubbing her eye.
He jumped to his feet and scanned the room. A panel in the wall read “WARNING: HIGH VOLTAGE.” An idea struck him.
He ran towards it, shooting a blast at it. Exposed wires could be seen. He looked over his shoulder; another tendril was chasing him. He arched his arm around him, energy building up in his hand.
He reached the wall and jumped up, the tendril missing him and slamming into the panel. He released the charged arrow at the tendril, pinning it. A bolt of electricity ran through the tendril and into the girl.
Nothing happened for a moment, until the girl fell over, the tendril sliding back to her, forming again into a hand.
The scientists watched, some with amazement.
July 2, 2:00 P.M.
Dmitri walked out of his room and down a hallway. Brushing past busy scientists he found his way into a quiet lab.
The green-eyed scientist turned around at the sound of his footsteps.
“Oh, Dmitri. You’re here.” He muttered, looking over his shoulder. There was a table in front of him, files scattered on it.
The boy walked to him. The scientist put some files away, the picture of a blue-haired man with test tubes filled with some green substance hanging from belt on the middle of the table.
“This is Sigmund Blasa. This is the man we’re sending you to capture.” He said, a bit reluctantly.
The boy said nothing. “What did he do?” He asked, finally.
“We were in the process of creating an experimental corrosive acid. Blasa got some of it, and learned how to make it. He escaped with the formula, and turned to crime, stealing and getting the materials off the black market. We’ve gotten rumors of activity at an abandoned chemical factory. We think Blasa is hiding there, producing more of the stuff.”
“And you’re sending me down there tomorrow.”
The man nodded solemnly.
“Why not send in Subject 101?”
“She has problems with staying focused on the mission. She isn’t reliable.”
Dmitri turned away. As he walked away, a hand shot out and grabbed his shoulder.
Nothing came out of the man. Finally, Dmitri broke the silence.
“What’s wrong, Nicola?”
“Be really careful, Dmitri…” A gulp. “The acid is really strong. Your suit won’t be able to hold, and you know what happens if you lose your suit.”
“My powers go haywire. I know.”
“Good. Please, be careful. We – I – don’t want to lose you.”
“Don’t worry, Nicola.”
He didn’t really believe it.
July 3, 7:00 A.M.
An helicopter hovered above a dense forest. Some distance away, a factory, long abandoned, from the looks of it, could be spotted. Dmitri looked upon it from the helicopter.
“Are you ready? We’ll have to drop you off here. Any closer and we might be spotted.”
A line was tossed into the forest. Once it was secured, Dmitri grabbed it and slid down. The dense forest blotted out the sky, but he heard as the helicopter flew away.
Dmitri stretched, mentally preparing himself. This won’t be easy. Stay on your toes, Dmitri.
He started running, building up kinetic energy. As he leapt from branch to branch, thoughts raced in his mind. He tried to calm himself when the grey walls of the factory were upon him.
He took a deep breath and surrounded the building, close to the wall. He found a door and opened it, quietly, scurrying in. The place was dark, and mostly silent. Deep into the factory, he could hear nondescript noises…
He walked next to a large conveyor belt and a large vat of bubbling green liquid. Large vats of acid were all over the place. Okay, it’s obvious he’s here — His thoughts were suddenly interrupted as the factory roared to life. The conveyor belt started rolling, a hook moved to directly above Dmitri.
Sigmund Blasa stood on it, a lab coat around him, pointing a chemical gun at Dmitri.
“Hey. I know you. You’re that kid. The lab’s big hope. Dmitri, right?”
Dmitri looked at the man, ready to spring.
Blasa’s eyes gleamed. “For such a big hope I was expecting something more threatening. They sent you on a suicide mission, kid!”
A press of the trigger and Dmitri was on the move, hopping onto the conveyor belt. The acid hit the ground where he was standing, sizzling.
Dmitri started charging a blast when he saw acid coming his way. He rolled under the acid and jumped, landing on the ground. He started running towards a set of stairs that led into a raised metal grate platform. Sigmund shot at the stairs, burning them almost instantly.
Dmitri jumped over the corrosive puddle and kicked off the wall, reaching the platform. He pulled himself up, his costume at full charge. He swung his arm and hit the hook, cutting it off. Blasa jumped off onto the platform. The fighters looked at each other. Dmitri made his move, shooting a blast at Blasa’s hand, knocking the gun off his hand and into a vat.
“You’re not half bad, kid.” Dmitri ran at him.
Sigmund reached for his belt, grabbing a tube with acid. He threw it at the ground under Dmitri, destroying it. Unable to stop in time, he fell in. His hand shot out, grabbing onto the edge of the hole. He dangled over a vat.
“Not good enough, though. I’ll leave your remains on their front door. Well, if there’s any.” Blasa said as he approached him, his foot stepping on his fingers.
Panicking, Dmitri shot at Blasa with his free hand, hitting his eyes. He stumbled backwards, stunned. Dmitri pulled himself up and lunged forward, knocking Blasa off the platform. His hand shot out and grabbed Dmitri, taking him to the ground with him.
The fighters hit the ground, Dmitri on his stomach, landing in front of Blasa. He started to get up as a fist was driven into his face, sending him backwards. He instinctively ducked, a tube flying over him and splattered against the wall, making a hole.
Dmitri held his head as he faintly heard Blasa run away. He opened his eyes and followed his footsteps. He was coming upon a set of stairs that led into the rooftop.
He ran up the stairs as holes were torn into them. He jumped over them and followed. He reached the final step and the door to the roof, kicked open. Running out, he saw Blasa.
Blasa tossed a tube and Dmitri easily intercepted it mid-air, sidestepping the falling acid that fell on the roof, making an impromptu light tube. He ran straight at him. Blasa whipped out a tube and Dmitri kicked it out of his hand, startling him. Dmitri threw a hook at Blasa’s face, jerking him around. He put his arm up, blocking the punch. He drove his knee into Dmitri, knocking the air out of him.
Blasa walked back, towards the edge of the roof. Dmitri swung a blast at him, hitting Blasa in the chest, knocking him backwards. He hung over the edge as Dmitri lunged forward, knocking both off the roof and into a tree.
Branches whipped at Blasa’s back and Dmitri’s face. One of them dug into the latter’s clothes and it was Blasa that hit the ground with a loud thud.
A few minutes later, Dmitri slowly opened his eyes. His surroundings swam in and out, like he was in the virtual reality room. But the blood on his face was real. He felt it. He had shallow cuts, nothing serious. He looked below, expecting Blasa. Instead, he saw small droplets of blood, leading into the forest. He eased himself off the branch and landed on his feet, walking into the forest.
The forest was quiet. He followed the droplets of blood until they stopped, no Blasa in sight. He rested on a tree, exhausted from the fight. Suddenly, a branch on the ground cracked. He turned around, startled.
Blasa rolled from behind a tree, holding a small chemical gun. His shirt was covered in blood, and his eyes were open wide. There was something in them, as if the man had cracked.
“DIE, YOU WHITE HAIRED BASTARD!” screamed Blasa, pressing the trigger. Dmitri ducked, the acid flying just above him. Blasa was relentless, shooting in the blink of an eye, Dmitri barely dodging. Trees fell around them, hitting the ground with a loud thud.
Dmitri rolled behind a tree, his hand arched around him, energy building up. His breathing was heavy, his mind was in hazy panic. His body was beyond the point of exhaustion. He had to end it or be ended.
He rolled out, running at Blasa. He leapt to a side, dodging a blast of acid. His mind flashed with the memory of yesterday’s morning. He released the shot, aiming at the gun, much like he had done with the soldier.
But this time it didn’t hit the gun.
The chemical gun fell to the floor, Blasa’s hand still gripping it. Blasa looked at the bloody stump that used to be his hand, in complete shock. Dmitri ran forward and kicked high, hitting Blasa across the face and into the ground, unconscious.
He fell to his knees and reached into his pocket, bringing out a small device with a button on it. He pressed it, held it…and slumped over.
Not far from there, the engine of an helicopter started up.
A few hours later
Consciousness returned to Dmitri. He looked up, groggily for the second time in a day. Blasa stood above him, gripping the chemical gun. He pressed the trigger, releasing acid. Dmitri had no time to move and screamed, the acid pouring into his skin, sizzling, burning him to the bone—
Dmitri kept screaming as he bolted up in his bed, gripping the covers. He sat in his room, alone. Nicola walked in, faced Dmitri, and put a hand on his shoulder.
“You did well, son.”
Dmitri smiled. For a moment, he didn’t look like a fighter. He looked like a kid, happy to be with his father.
Nicola smiled back. “Don’t think this is your last job. Are you ready?”