I couldn't sleep that night; not with guilt flooding my mind. Though I know I'm already in somewhat trouble for talking out of line, especially in the position I'm in, I know I can't just sit here and let her do whatever the fuck she wants to do to that mermaid. Even if she did wanted to make a meal out of me… I rolled out of bed and looked for something that would open the door. There was no handle, no knob, no hand scan, eye scan, DNA scan, nor a keypad. Just a door that could only be opened on the other side… The final hero is what they call me and yet here I am trapped like some sort of criminal. A monster in a cage… A monster…with power! I took a couple of steps back from the door and pumped myself up with adrenaline. Charging at the door, I easily broke it down only to trip the alarm. Red lights came from the ceiling with a high pitched sound ringing in my ears. Guards with ear plugs in black armor, floating robots and guns came running down the hall after me.
"I don't want to hurt you. Stand down!" I yelled but it was all futile. They still were charging down the hall. One of the men shot a sleeping dart at me but it didn't affect me at all. "So be it…" I growled. I walked casually down the hall, flinging all who stood in my way against the walls and crushing the robots with my bare hands. Far ahead an iron wall was falling to block my path. I charged forward and rolled under the wall before it was too late. After passing a few rooms and halls, I heard footsteps of another group of men and women coming down the halls and stairs to pursue me. I leaped into one of the rooms that just happened to be vacant and waited for them to pass by. The room I sat in was dark, cold and had papers and boxes scattered everywhere. What a mess… As the guards passed by, I sensed something in the room with me. I scanned the room and pressed my back against the wall with my arms up. Just then, something with three glowing red eyes came towards me slowly.
"Ru-" it said. Somehow the lights in the room came on and it revealed a small floating robot. It was smaller than Bot and unlike him, it had three red eyes and an antenna on top of its head. "Ru-" it said again with sparks flying from its circuits. The poor thing must be broken… I turned my head to listen outside. Nothing. Now's my chance! As I exit the room, I noticed the robot following me for some reason. "Ru-" it buzzed. I motioned my hand for it to go away but it only continued to follow me. I didn't have time to deal with it so I just let it follow me around. Thankfully it was quiet when guards passed by and sometimes even proven useful by distracting a group while I made my escape up the stairs.
When I made it to the room where the mermaid was kept, Bot was there waiting for me. He switched his hand to an electrical sword with the mermaid behind him, clearly confused at my appearance.
"Things will turn back to normal if you just turn around and go back to your room, Kaleo. It doesn't have to be this way." he swayed his sword a bit. I shook my head. "If you actually manage to get away with this thing, then we would have to replace you with someone whose more obedient for the 'Final Hero" project. Perhaps one of the guards who desperately needs to support their family, or maybe someone younger who-"
"No!" I frowned. I will not let them rip anyone from their families again. But I can't stay and be a part of this madness… The small floating robot that followed me, managed to snuck by Bot and pressed the button to release the female in the tank. The water went down and the glass tank opened up. Bot swiftly flew up to the android to stab it, but the small thing put up a shield to dodge the blow. I made my way over to the tank to pick the girl up.
"Hold it right there!" a man called out with a gun aimed at me. A guard with a silver star on his cracked helmet, revealing his glaring green eyes and his snarling mouth with a chipped tooth. "I knew it was foolish to depend on someone like you…" he slowly walked into the room. "You've always cared more about keeping your humanity than to break a few eggs, Kaleo. The human race needs a soldier who can shoot on command without flenching or questioning. A soldier who isn't afraid of death but will do anything to survive. That isn't you and I'm afraid your services are no longer needed."
"Stand down, soldier. Dr. Peral wants him alive no matter what." Bot floated between me and him.
"Alive? What's good in keeping a disobedient beast alive? It was agreed the moment he decided to go rogue, he was to be terminated. I'm just following orders… "
"He is to be kept alive!" Bot pointed his sword at the guard. The soldier shot at Bot, damaging his systems. Bot dropped to the flow with the other robot floating down to his side.
"Damaged and obsolete machines should be terminated and replaced." he smirked. "Now as for you… Put the mermaid down and follow me." he took another step closer. I whispered in the mermaid's ear:
"I'm sorry." as I set her down gently.
"Hands up!" he yelled. I did what I was told and slowly walked up to him. He exited the room with the gun still aimed at me; he knows better to keep his distance from me. As soon as I was out of the room, I turned my back to him and felt him poking the gun at my back. "Walk." he growled. As we walked down the stairs, it somehow felt like it was a never ending walk.
"What's going to happen to me? For committing what is so called a crime on my part?"
"You'll be killed. Simple as that."
"You know my name. Does that mean you know me?"
"I admit, I knew you once."
"Mind telling me who I am? Or rather was?"
"There's no point in telling you. You'll be dead anyways."
"But I'd be at peace."
"Peace?!" he started laughing. "You pathetic son of a bitch! Do you think those who were left on Earth to die had peace of mind?"
"People were left on Earth to die?" I turned around.
"Most of 'em. Some were unfortunate to be left behind. But those who were purposely left behind were criminals, mentally unstable patients, those who had nothing, and those who could not offer anything. I bet ya not one damned soul had a peace of mind when Earth was destroyed." he laughed. Rage was filled in my veins and my vision turned red as that man, no… As that monster underneath a blanket of human flesh laughed. In a blink of an eye, I had knocked the gun from his hand, grabbed him by the throat and tossed him down the stairs. I heard him scream and I heard the bones in his body break. I peeked over the railing and saw the man lying motionlessly on the floor with blood mixing with the vomit seeping out of his mouth. I looked down at my hands and stared. These hands that are now stained in blood… They look like they are hands of a monster. A tap on my shoulder startled me. It was a cold touch and yet maybe for a moment, I knew who it was.
"Lydia…" I turned around.
"Who?" the phantom spoke. I rubbed my eyes and looked again, seeing it was the mermaid instead. She held Bot in her arms as the other floating robot was behind her. "Who is Lydia?" she asked.
"…" I glanced away, trying to remember why I had said 'Lydia' and not 'you'. "I do not know anyone of that name. I don't know a Lydia." I looked back at her. I shook my head, for now was not the time to be discussing what I said. "Follow me, I will help you escape. But I ask you to aid me." I said as I began to walk down the stairs.
"Why should I trust what you say, outsider?" she followed me down.
"I'm a prisoner myself here." I whispered. We snuck by some soldiers and finally made it outside.
"If I take you to my home, none of my people will understand you and they will try to kill you. So until I can speak with my father, you will have to stay in that cave where we met." she said as she handed me Bot. She dove in the water with me and the robots behind her. Underwater, I followed her to the cave even though my body was yearning to rest. When we finally made it, I tossed Bot to the ground and collapsed. "Before I even think about bringing you forth to my kind or even asking permission from my father, you will answer my questions." the mermaid said though I was too exhausted to listen or even give a reply. "I will return with things for you and your tools tomorrow morning." she whispered in my ear. I heard her splash in the water and felt the other robot turning on what felt like a heater by me.