KEYCHAIN – CHAPTER 1

His eyelids flickered, and when his vision finally focused Chris realized that he was no longer in his home back in South Florida. Quickly he looked to his left and right and noticed that his friends Becky and John were as well with him. He put his hands on the two seemingly lifeless bodies, "John…Becky…wake up!" he shouted, but to no avail. He checked his surroundings and realized that he was in a huge golden castle with shades of black and purple filling in all of the dark corners and windows. This area in particular was like a dome, a multi-colored glass mural on the top letting in little to no light. Twelve doors encircled the area six to Chris' right and the other six to his left and to his north was a set of stairs that led to a giant throne with a chair made for a giant. It bright red velvet and golden trimmings made it obvious that someone was to appear before Chris and his friends.

As he stood up, he realized that more bodies were rising up with him simultaneously. More sleeping bodies were on the floor of the room with more people waking up by the minute. Chris could not understand how it was that he ended up here. It was like any other regular day; he suffered in his Physics classes and barely managed to understand any of the materials in his upper-level courses. The only thing out of the ordinary was that he and his friends John and Becky decided to walk home together. It was then that they noticed a man with a black robe who was clearly smiling at the trio and before any of them could react, he disappeared. "What the hell-?" before John could finish a black portal with an immense force sucked the trio in. Chris could not breathe and was panicking and before he knew it he awoke in this castle.

While Chris was trying to understand where and why all these kids were here, his friends Becky and John awoke. "Chris, where are we?" Becky asked, still drowsy from her slumber.

"I don't know. Some sort of castle, with a lot of people in it. I haven't explored it yet cause I've yet to see anyone else do it " he responded. The trio conversed for some time until everyone in the room was awake.

"Where are we!" shouted a boy.

"There's no reception here. I can't call my parents!" yelled a girl.

All you could hear was the mumbling of over 2000 people in a small room all confused and disoriented as Chris, Becky, and John were. This all however came to an end when a loud voice demanded for, "Silence!" Everyone turned their heads to the throne before them and in it was a shadowed figure with a regal cape that covered his shoulders and flowed to the figure feet. He wore a kings crown and seemed to have no facial features, yet had the ability to speak. "Welcome players. I am the Gamemaster, the God of this world; you have all been chosen to take part of my game."

"What game!?" questioned someone from the crowd. The Gamemaster lifted his hand. My hands soon went rushing to my face as my mouth had spontaneously disappeared.

"No questions please, all of them will be answered shortly," he resumed, "now all 2000 of have randomly been chosen to partake in a death match with no rules except that only one player can remain the victor, no exceptions. As the name entails, you will all need to kill one another in this match but the means in doing so is unlike any of you are used to hearing. In this game, you must kill each other using the power of the spirits that formerly resided in this world. This power is found in keychains like these that are hidden all throughout this world." He opened his other hand and before him appeared a series of keychains, simplistic in design. It had a silver component that varied amongst the keychains, which held a sphere that varied in color.

God explained that each keychain brought a different power or ability to its user and as such, these powers and abilities were categorized into different classes. This system was crucial as certain classes could be helpful to another group or individual, some could guarantee an advantage in a battle, and others could guarantee your death. God explained that we as the players need to pick our battles wisely. He said that once the game began he would inform us on all the classes of spirits that were available to us.

"Furthermore," he continued, "The six doors that are located to your left and right each lead to a different area in this world. Night and day do not exist here, but depending on the zone in which you are located, you may experience either or, or something else in between such as dawn and dusk. The 12 Zones in which you can all have access to are:

1. Prairie

2. Swamp

3. Forest

4. Dessert

5. Savannah

6. Lava

7. Tundra

8. Mountains

9. Ruins

10. Shore

11. Floats

12. Arctic

"Eventually," he added, "if certain conditions are met you will be have access to my castle. This area is known as Crown. More information on these areas will be given as the game progresses. Now, as for food and sleeping areas, 1 market and 1 "hotel" are available at each zone. Food is supplied three times a day, breakfast, lunch and dinner, once per person and you cannot stay within the market for more than 10 minutes. You must choose when it is that you want to eat for that day. You are only allowed to stay at the "hotel" for 2 hours. If you are in any of these areas for more than the time allowed, it will result in immediate termination. Now these areas are neutral zones and this neutrality extends to about 20 meters from the actual markets and hotels. Any fighting that takes place in these zones will result in immediate termination."

God explained that these areas are essentially war zones. The leaders of the game take advantage of the weak and hungry and kill them as they travel to these places. The best food and sleeping commodities were located in the Crown Zone, and the time allotted to stay in the Crowns market and hotel were much longer than that of any other zone. He forewarned us that there are absolutely no hospitals in any of the zones, that there is a class called "Medics" that can supply most if not all medical needs. However, this class was rare, making them very valuable.

Before he announced the beginning of the games he told us two things: until we were to receive at least one keychain, we would be classified as Sacrifices which marked us as the most vulnerable and the weakest. The second thing he told us was that the winner of the game would become the next god of the world and as such he can set the imprisoned spirits free; bring back the dead, or anything he or she desires. With that, God lowered his hand and everyone's mouth had returned. Before anyone could make a comment he yelled from the top of his lungs, "Let the games begin!"

The doors opened and everyone rushed to get into one of them, Becky John and Chris seemed confused as to which one to enter it was then that Becky yelled, "This way" and the trio entered the 2nd door to their left. A bright white light was shining in their faces and soon enough they were in a zone. Above them in the sky read in digitalized letters, "ZONE 9. RUINS." Silence ensued; everyone had a question of their own that was left unanswered. The Ruins Zone was filled with debris and litter. Destroyed building could be found left and right and everything seemed a little gray to the trio's vision. The time here was Dusk and the trio was located behind a wall with the upper portion completely dismantled.

Suddenly John yelled duck and so the trio shot to the ground as above them a barrage of bullets flew through the air. This was a sign that people were already finding keychains.

"This is all so sudden," said Chris dumbfounded and stunned, he could not believe the situation in which he was put in. Just moments ago he was on his way home ready to eat his mom's food and take a well deserved rest.

"Guys I found one!" Becky exclaimed. In her palm was a keychain with a silver claw component that held a dusky violet sphere. "How do I use it? Do I just say activate?" Her question was soon answered as the keychain faded and became one with her. Becky sprouted black translucent claws from both her hands and feet and a demonic tail protruded from her lower back. She snickered and looked at both John and Chris with a very feral look.

"Becky are you alright?" asked John

"Keychain #0789. Primary class 'Animal', secondary class 'Dark', tertiary class 'Berserker,'" responded Becky. She turned to her left and rushed at the boy shooting at them. She attempted to strike many times at the boys throat but kept missing. However, he himself did not have the best of aim with his gun. Soon enough Becky managed to trip him with her tail and released a pulse of dark energy from her claws rendering the boy unable to move. She soon brought her claws together into two single spikes and pierced the boys' chest.

"SOLDIER Scott TERMINATED," appeared over his corpse and it soon faded out of existence.

"Where the hell am I!?" asked Chris.