NU-PROJECT: Initiation Chapter 03

I stare at the left brick wall under the sink, where Donovan said that Maximus kept the black box. I curl my right hand into a fist and punch the wall non-stop until the hole is big. I shift my head back inside the small space under the sink and a black box with blue light radiating from it greets me.

I pull the box out of the dark and take a good look at it. The intricate patterns on the box reminded me of the boxes JS-rohm gave us before they sent us out to slaughter each other. I look for the fingerprint scanner; two blue rectangles which the patterns on the box usually connect to – almost like the starting point of a pattern.

I place both of my thumbs on the fingerprint scanner and press it like a button. I hear a couple of locks unlock and the blue light turns into red. I take my thumb off and the box opens up - cool smoke-like fog escapes the opening and I lift the lid up to get a better glimpse of the contents.

I am not too surprised by its contents - knives, two pairs of advance battle gear gloves and boots, a device which looks like a smartphone, a big bag of air-tight beef jerky, two pairs of communication devices and lastly, two white pills - one with a wing logo and a zero engraved on the other.

The only thing I do not understand about the contents of the box is the extra pair of advance battle gears and the white pills. My eyes set themselves on the extra gear and I wonder if it was for Maximus.

The probability of it being Maximus' is high. I grab the extra gear and lay it beside Donovan - still sleeping in the living room sofa. As I return to the kitchen to strategize and make my first move, I cannot help but wonder how Donovan managed to push me far with an immense amount of strength. I give myself dozens of reasons to how that was possible and finally, I came to a conclusion. It could have been adrenaline rush.

It is the most plausible reason as of now. I arrange the items back into the box and locked it the same way I opened it. The red light returns back to blue and the locks lock themselves again.

I look back into the hole to clear the broken pieces of bricks and I notice a black strap. I hold on to it and pull it out of the dark. Now, this surprises me - two black bag-packs. Both of the bags are packed - too packed to be exact.

I open one of the bags and it is filled with American dollars. I'm guessing that these are millions of American dollars – probably the ones Maximus earned during his service at JS-rohm. This is not a necessity for Numans but it could be useful when the need for it arises. As I remove bundles of money from the bag, I find guns. These guns are not any ordinary guns. They don't have projectiles in them or fire bullets. In fact, the guns are more like a fragment of human imagination – laser guns.

I take the guns out of the bag and place them on the kitchen counter. I return the money to the bag and zip it close. I shift my attention to the other bag and unzip it. Like the box, its contents do not surprise me. It had a pair basic battle suit, an all-in-one first aid kit and everything else you need to survive in the wild - which includes another bag of air-tight beef jerky.

I cannot stop myself from smiling at the sight of beef-jerky. Maximus has a soft spot for it. He loves it. I have never seen a day of his life without a piece of beef-jerky in his pocket. His daughter, Maria, loves it too. Now, I am convinced that the extra gears must be for Maximus.

I gather all the extra gear and lay it beside Donovan. I look down to get a glimpse of his face. I guess I have no choice but to bring him along with me. It will slow me down but at least I will be able to protect him. I owe this to Maximus and his family.

I repack the bags - separating the money and beef jerky equally between the bags. After that, I take my basic battle suit and the boots and change into it. The materials used to make the suits are unique. It will look a little bulky and rough but it is actually very comfortable and light.

The suit is multi-purpose. It doubles as a jacket when the weather is cold, waterproof when it rains and lastly, it is also a swimsuit. To include to its amazing features, the suit does not need any washing. All you need to do is to just wash it over water while wearing it and tt cleans itself faster that way. Such a suit does not exist in the current world but in the shadows, the shadow government's technology far too advance.

The suit tightens itself around my body - almost like hugging me. I stretch around in the suit to make myself comfortable. After that, I grab a khaki cargo pants and an oversized orange hooded-jacket Donovan bought for my birthday last year. He had a really bad sense of humour sometimes. This jacket is one of them - 'Quickly grow taller' he wrote on the tag inside the jacket.

Suddenly, everything made sense. Mira's sudden mood to cook up a pot of beef stew, Donovan's not-so-secret surprise and Rey's cheeky smile - they were all for me, my birthday. It is something to be happy about but by smile quickly turns into a frown. What a tragic birthday.

I braid my hair so that it will not fly about when I am in the middle of combat. I put on my boots and jump around the room to get myself used to the feeling of wearing one. I did a couple of warm-up punches and kicks to get my blood pumping and my fist, as well as, my legs ready for action.

"You look ridiculous in that jacket, you know." A deep voice laughs.

"Oh, look who just woke up!" I say sarcastically, "Guess who bought this for me."

"I did," he chuckles, walking into the room - fully suited up in his gear.

"How long have you been awake?" I ask, a little surprised at his ability to retain his personality.

"Not too long ago," he replies, rubbing his short hair with a small pink towel. "Don't worry I washed up before putting the suit on."

"That's not what I'm thinking of, Donovan." I say, frowning. "What are you planning to do now?"

"Take me with you, Agila!" He begs, with a little bit of anger and confidence in his tone. "I want revenge! Revenge on the people who murdered my family!"

"Donovan, these people are bigger than you." I sigh heavily. "They are bigger than the whole world!"

"That's why I have you!" He cries out, "I know what you are. You're like a superhero!"

My mouth hangs loose. I cannot think of a word to say to him. I wanted to say 'I'm not a superhero' and I cannot hold such a big title. I am not worthy. I can take Donovan with me but he will put his life in danger. However, at the same time, it would be easier for me to protect him.

"Please, Agila." He pleads, desperately. "I don't care if I have a sea of problems waiting for me if I join you. I'm begging you, Agila! You have to take me in!"

As I open my mouth to give my answer, a familiar scent catches my attention. My mind switches to defence mode. Two hostiles. They are getting closer - slowly and in a cautious manner. For some unknown reason, one of the two incoming hostiles has a scent of a canine - a very big canine.

"Take the box and the bag packs and hide somewhere safe." I order, pointing to the box. "Hurry, do it quietly!"

Donovan does not question my orders. He does as he is told. At least I will not have much problem on trying to control him. I take the laser gun and knives - slotting them in one of the pockets of my cargo pants. I look back to check on Donovan, and I catch a glimpse of him running down to the basement.

I peek through the window and the fire from the makeshift funeral-cremation has died down. I look around a little more and I can see them walking closer. They must be from JS-rohm. Like a lightning, I sprint out the back door and climb up the house like a monkey until I stand on the roof – cautiously finding a way to get a good view of the hostiles and at the same time, to avoid revealing my presence.

The light of the rising sun is on my back and I can smell no other scent. The two shadow figures are my only opponents. For JS-rohm to send just two of their men to retrieve the box, they must be well trained - trained enough to know my weaknesses.

With my eagle-like eyesight, I can see that the enemies are in full gear. I have to be careful whenever I engage in close combat with them. Who knows what changes they made to the gear?

"There, I see her!" One of them roars, pointing at me.

Immediately and wasting no time, I jump off the roof and land an air kick down to the head of the one who shouted - his face penetrates the ground. I land a punch to his partner's stomach and he tumbles a couple of meters away, scrapping off patches of grass as he tumbles. I jump three to four meters away from where I stand, making sure that I keep my distance away from them. The enemy I face-planted to the ground slowly gets up and laughs like a mad man.

"Nice kick," he laughs as his face becomes hairier and wolf-like, "allow me to tear you apart!"

A werewolf? When did JS-rohm create such an abomination? I stand rooted to the ground. This is unbelievable! How far will they go to create the perfect human hybrid? I stare at the enemy - both in amazement and fear.

He launches himself towards me in lightning speed and punches me in my stomach. I can feel the air escape my lungs as I sweep the ground under me with my back. Before I can take another breath, he grabs the collar of my gear and lands a couple of hairy fists on my face.

I lost sight of the other enemy as my blood falls down on my face - clouding my vision. He could be under camouflage. I close my eyes to focus all my senses on hearing and smell. The wolf's scent is overpowering but I can still smell his partner's scent and the bad news is that he is slowly making his way to the house. I must protect Donovan.

I pretend to fall unconscious and the punches stops. My face is covered with blood and is badly bashed. The wolf drops my body to the ground and laughs. I remain still for a moment, giving my body a little time to adjust for my next attack.

"Looks like you missed a spot." I groan, trying to get up on my feet slowly. "I'm not human."

I flash a smile as the open wounds on my face regenerates. My eyes remain closed as I stand. I bend my legs and pounce towards the scent of the wolf. Like what I did during the escape from The Facility, I aim my attacks on the joints. This would stop their movements permanently or temporarily.

Neck. Shoulders. Elbows. Knees. Finally, the spine. I punched the pressure points as hard as I can to paralyze the wolf permanently. I can kill him but, killing is not my priority. Donovan and the box is.

Using my sense of smell, I track the camouflaged enemy and strike him down with an elbow to the face. I can feel his skull crack under the force of my attack. He tumbles backwards and again, I am caught off guard. Now that I have cleaned my face from blood, I can see better. I stare at his bleeding and broken nose. Just what has JS-rohm been doing all these years? Creating human hybrids? What kind of sick game are they playing?

The skin of my current opponent is like that of a chameleon. A part of his skin is blends into the grass almost perfectly. Compared to the wolf, his scent is much fainter. What a deadly combination. No wonder they are partners. It is a strategy-based team of stealth and strength.

"What are you?" I ask, uncertain of everything that is going on.

"You should be dead." A voice growls, "You and everyone in JS-rohm!"

Too late! I am kicked to the ground hard, my arms twisted and broken behind my back. It is the wolf. As I scream in pain, I cannot believe what had just happened. How did the wolf managed to move? I hit him in all the right places to permanently paralyze him. No. He cannot be. They cannot be! Could they be a new generation of Numans?

The wolf pulls me up on my feet, his fury arms and hands still gripping on to my arms - breaking it even more at the same time to give me an extra dose of physical pain. I watch his partner stand up and, right in front of me, his face reconstructs itself.

"I don't know who you are." He snarls, his fists trembling by his side. "But this is the last of you, JS-rohm scum. Prepare to-"

"Cut the crap, Halaman." The wolf growls, sounding a little annoyed. "Rip out her heart and let's get on with our mission!"

Halaman. The name sounds familiar. I must be hearing things. They cannot be my ex-teamates. They look very different from the Halaman and Azkal I used to know. They do not turn into a werewolf or blend into their environment like a chameleon. I close my eyes in anticipation of my inevitable death. Well, at least I will not live forever. I would die young.

"I'm sorry, Maximus." I murmur - my voice barely audible. "I have failed you."

I open my eyes to look at my executioner. His eyes are green, just like Halaman's but it is empty - emotionless. His hand rips through my chest and he holds on to my heart. His arm is cold. I can feel him wrapping his hand around my heart. It is painful but I force myself to make no sound.

"No!" A voice screams but it is muffled by my thoughts. "Don't hurt her!"

Donovan? I look at the house and I see him standing at the door but he looks more shocked than panicked. I look the other direction and a see a blurry feminine figure running as fast as she can towards us. It is her voice. My executioner releases my heart from his cold and firm grip, pulling his arm away from my chest.

Suddenly, I feel like my ears are blocked. I cannot hear very well. Their voices sound like someone trying to speak to me underwater. The wolf releases me form his hold, letting me fall on my knees - my arms lay dangling and limp by my side. The woman yelling is now right in front of me – yelling out words that I cannot understand. She holds me in her arms and I can hear her command the wolf and his partner to move away. She holds on to me with her eyes flooding with tears.

"Agila, remember me?" She frantically cries out, "I'm Rhionan West."

A/N: What is going on here? Who is Rhionan West? The pieces will fit together in the next chapter!

Well, I hope this chapter is not too confusing(but i did plan it to be like this.) What do you think? Do leave me a review! Follow the story if you think it is interesting and if you love it! :D thank you to the ones who have reviewed! Your comment encourages me to keep moving forward and (hopefully) make the story better! See you all in the next chapter! (and dont forget to review me!) :D -Akaenji