My first story posted here :D I hope you guys enjoy it!

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Chapter 1: Twelve Years Past

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Somewhere in the northern-most continent on the spherical globe, a smallish girl lies in the damp, grassy hills just outside the big wall of the city where she called home. She had let her strained eyelids fall shut and she might have been unawake.

She was lost in the uninterrupted flow of dreams, her only escape from the thundering world that developed around her. Dreaming was her favorite pastime. Sometimes she'd dream while she was awake, and sometimes she'd slip in and out of consciousness.

While she was dreaming, she could fully tune out the clanking, crashing, thrashing rhythm of the society's technological advances. Then and only then could her mind be fully at rest within its tranquil self.

Colors swished and swooshed back and forth in her mind. She was reminded of happier times in her life. Times spent with mother and father. When she was young and tender, father seemed to always be home. Recently, work had taken a toll on him. Mother spoke with sadness in her voice. Father's job was one to be held with great respect and honor, but also great danger and heavy risk.

"Carra! It's time for work! Carra, wake up, you're only dreaming!" Carra quickly recognized the sound of her mother's distant voice. Carra's mother was calling through the screen on Carra's automated cellular phone. Carra blinked rapidly, giving her eyes time to adjust to the sunshine that now flooded them.

"Oh." She said when she realized that her dream was just that: a dream. She tried to recall it but it slipped away into the depths of her mind like all dreams did. She scurried off into the city streets. Her boots were slippery from the muddy grass and they made that sticky-clanking sound as she ran through the metal streets. But Carra didn't care. Heads turned as they saw her jolting past like a lightning bolt.

Carra's feet stopped at the averagely-sized apartment building that she now faced. She entered the main parlor and walked over to the elevator and stepped inside. "Floor 116 Room 12 please." The automated elevator door whooshed off the ground and lifted Carra to her family's residence inside the apartment building.

This was the fun part. Carra had just recently grown tall enough to peek over the rail in the elevator and look out the small window. "Whoa." She said as she saw all of the people below her and some others in elevator shafts like this one.

The elevator door slid open and Carra exited. Just like always, she now stood in front of her family's dwelling place.

"Mother? Father? Are you home?" Carra asked. She inserted a small block key and the doors whooshed open long enough for Carra to step inside and then they closed again.

"Carra, dear, your father's at work. What have you been doing all afternoon besides dreaming?" Carra's mother was at work on one of her latest inventions. This time it was a very small, very shiny black object with a handle and many buttons. It had a funnel at one end of it and a trigger on the other.

"What does it do?"

"Ah, you answer my question first. Where were you?"

"I was dreaming…"

"All afternoon? Carra, you're not going to get accepted into the Inter-Planetary Peace Committee if you don't start practicing all of the skills like they told you! You told me that being a Peacemaker was your deepest and most fondest desire ever since your father showed you how the job is done."

"I've been having a few worries about skipping school, that's all."

"You'll make up for it in the long run. I thought that this career was the one that you chose to be your lifelong station? You used to want to be a Governor, or a Lawkeeper. But I was so proud when you ultimately chose Peacemaker. If you ask me, it's one of the most honorable careers out there. That's why I married your father."

"Mother, I'm not changing my mind; I'm determined. I'm just afraid about going away to the training camp once I turn eleven. I'll miss school, and science, and history and mathematics. I'll miss all the learning."

"There's plenty to learn at the Peacemaker camp. I've told you the stories from when I went there as a young girl. You'll finally get to see some of Earth's proudest megalopolises. You'll be able to study in great detail how the World Wars XXVII and XXVIII lead to the International Peace Treaty and how our planet united as one Nation."

"When do I get to travel off-world and make peace on other planets?" Carra's eyes sparkled.

Carra's mother chuckled. "There's that passion! The fire! That's what keeps our world strong. That's what accomplishes great things. You keep that fiery spirit of yours, and someday you'll help Earth to make lasting peace with some of the other planets. Nothing will be able to stop you!"

"Not even the Ninjas?" Carra's young voice croaked at the word. Ninjas. The two syllables burned cold in her mind. Like hot ice.

Carra's mother's gratified smile turned into a deep frown. A gray aura of sadness and hatred clawed at her memories of the ones who are called the Ninjas. "I will not lie to you, Carra, they aim to stop our world from achieving true peace with other nations. Don't let them fill your head with lies, brave one, lest they cloud your mind and drag you back into that dark place they came from…"

"You don't have to worry, mother, if I ever see a Ninja, I'll slit his throat." Saying the word "Ninja" gave her a bad taste in her mouth.

"Just remember why all of this is happening, dearest. It's all for benefit. Yours, mine, your father's, and the rest of the Nation. We have offered them peace, we have offered them homes and clothing and shelter. There is no more we can give—they must be stopped! Eradicated! Erased!" Mother's voice hit a gradual crescendo to what was almost a holler.

The words echoed in Carra's head. "Eradicated! Erased!" Her mother's words repeated. "Why do they stand in the way of peace, mother?" Carra asked in a deadpan stare.

"Your father has told me of his encounters with them. They have their own twisted delusions of the line of events that have occurred since the International Order of Peace was passed. I suppose it's only human nature to go out and seek a fight. But we have conquered that desire, haven't we?"

"Yes." Carra said determinately.

"I can't wait to tell your father how proud I am of you!"

Carra smiled up at her mother and put her arm around her. Together they overlooked the city outside their apartment. Tall, grand airships whooshed by leaving only the whirring sounds their winged propellers made. Children on quadricycles raced in the streets and their overly-protective parents warned them about the danger of being hit by a land-vehicle. Carra knew some of those kids. A few of them were in her class at school. And one of them wanted to be a Peacemaker too. His name was Bizo Marts.

Carra smiled down at Bizo. He looked up. With the aid of his prescription spectacles, he could see her all the way up there. He pushed the few strands of his musty dark brown hair out of his hazel eyes. He waved his hand and returned her a smile with his sparking teeth. Carra waved back.