The following story was written for an English assignment. The instructions were to write an original short story/play with a protagonist, a clear antagonist, a minimum of two characters, an interesting setting, dialogue, similes, and have basic story progression (beginning, middle, end).
Have you ever had those moments in your life where you regret your life choices? Because I'm having one of those moments right now.
I bet that you're probably wondering why I'm even thinking right now. It could have something to do with the fact that I'm wearing a black jacket underneath the sun, or the fact that I'm in a bunch of desert ruins. Both of those responses would be a lie.
The real reason is that I've been here for hours and have made zero progress with my objective.
"Where could this guy be hiding?!" I muttered to myself with frustration. At this point, I was pretty sure I was just walking around aimlessly. A part of me is pretty sure that this place is just a dead end, and that I've been on a wild goose chase for the past few hours. But the other part of me is saying that the guy I'm looking for is still here, thus why I'm still looking even though the sun is starting to set.
I probably should've brought one of my colleagues with me. At least then I'd have someone to talk to.
Now, as much as I could continue to complain about how bored I am, I think it'd be a little more ideal for you if I gave you a little background info about myself. Heck, I haven't even properly introduced myself yet! Long story short, my name's Levi Xavier and I died eighteen years.
You see, it all started back in 1999. I just so happened to be in wrong place at the wrong time and ended up getting shot by some burglar trying to make a getaway. I'll spare you the specifics and just tell you that I ended up dying. Once I ended up reaching heaven, I was given a choice that very few are given: I could either enjoy my afterlife up in cloud paradise, or return to Earth as half angel that protects the living from the supernatural. You can probably guess which one I picked. Fast forward about eighteen years and that brings us to today.
Being a half angel isn't all that bad; I can't die by any normal means, and I get some neat equipment to use in the field. The only downsides are that I can't fly with my wing and I'm not allowed to make interfere with the affairs of the living. While it's not the worst thing in the world, it doesn't exactly make it easy when it comes to making friends that aren't half angels like myself. On the bright side, it makes me feel like a ninja. And if there's at least one thing that fictional media has taught me, it's that ninjas are awesome.
Now if only I had a katana and a set of ninja clothes. Then I'd really be a ninja!
Before I go off on any more tangents, it's time to address the elephant in the room (or outdoor area, in my case): What the heck am I doing in the desert of all places?
It's actually not that long of a story. While I was snooping around in a nearby village, I overheard some people say something about a mysterious thief that was stealing a lot of the most valuable belongings of the villagers. Since there wasn't really anything else to do, I decided to track down this thief. The good news was that I tracked them down to these old desert ruins. The bad news is that I've been searching for hours and I still don't know where this person is. At this point I felt like I would fall asleep from the boredom, so I did the first thing I could think of to keep my mind somewhat entertained...
I took my phone out of my pocket and started playing a game on it.
...What? I'm not allowed to just play a videogame whenever I want? I don't tell you how to live your life, so don't tell me how to live my afterlife.
Besides, it's not like I'm unprepared or anything. My arm and leg enhancers are ready to go at a moment's notice, not to mention that I've made sure that Fulgur is at my side with all ten shots ready. So yeah, I'm pretty confident that there's nothing that could take me by-
...What was that noise?
I immediately pocketed my phone and started to frantically turn my head. There wasn't anything there.
Maybe it's just my mind playing tricks on- Wait a minute, there it is again! It's definitely coming from something nearby!
"Hello!?" I shouted. "Is anybody there!?"
The only form of response that I got was the sound of crunching sound once more, and it was closer this time.
Now that I think about it, that kind of sounds like...footsteps…
"Okay, seriously! I know you're there!" The footsteps started to get even closer, and at a faster pace as well. My hand slowly started to reach for my side. "Look dude! I don't know who you are, but this isn't funny! You're starting to give me the creeps!"
"Guess that means I'm doing a good job!"
Before I could even react, I felt something hitting my back. The knockback was strong enough to send me flying into a nearby stone pillar. To give you an idea of how much that hurts, let's just say that my spine would be broken if I wasn't a half angel.
Unfortunately, that doesn't mean that I don't ever feel pain.
"Maybe next time you should look both ways instead of staring at a screen! You never know when something might just run you over!"
...Is that who I think it is?
"What's the matter, Xavier? Aren't you gonna get up and face me like a man?"
I managed to use the pillar as a crutch, though I wasn't able to stand straight and had to hunch over. The pain was still there, but it had subsided a little bit. I turned my head towards him. "Says the guy...who kicked...me in...the back just...now…"
He shrugged his shoulders. "Well, you know what they say: when someone lets their guard down, someone else is gonna kick them in the back!"
"I'm pretty sure...that's not a…real saying…"
"You saying you could up with something better? Cause I honestly doubt that."
Remember when I said that it's my job as a half angel to protect the living from the supernatural? Well, this guy is one those things I was referring to. He's one of the many spirits that escaped judgement in the Underworld and torments the living for his own personal gain. I don't know what his real name is, but I do know that he calls himself Alpha (superiority complex much?). To give you an idea of what he looks like, just imagine a twenty year old man with black, messy hair that's wearing an unzipped jacket vest along with a pair of ripped jeans and worn down sneakers.
Did I also mention that I hate him?
As you can probably tell, this isn't this first time I've run into Alpha. It was sometime in the middle of 2006. I was just minding my business, and then I see this guy just show up and cause mayhem in a crowded. Before I could get the chance to confront him head on, he escaped. It wasn't until I casually mentioned the encounter to some of the more experienced half angels that I figured out who he really was. Turns out that Alpha is one of, if not, THE most infamous spirit to ever haunt the living. He's been around for nearly 100 years, and no half angel has ever been able to successfully capture him in that time. Think of it like a game of cat and mouse, but the mouse is riding on a missile and the cat is chained to the floor.
But none of that was going to stop me. I would go down in history as the first half angel to take him down.
As the years went by, I started to have more encounters with Alpha. It even got to the point where he would refer to me by my last name. I'd say we had a rivalry, but that would be implying that both of us have a fair chance of winning. No matter what the situation is, Alpha always gets the best of me. Heck, I'm pretty sure he knows my strengths and weaknesses better than I do! It didn't matter how hard I trained or how I much I improved since the previous encounter; I'd always lose.
This time would be different though. This would be the time where I win.
"You know, you would not believe how excited I was when I found out that you were in town!" Alpha remarked. "It's like we're magnets or something like that!"
"Very...funny," I huffed. By now, the pain had started to go away. "Look, I don't have time for this. I'm trying to look for some thief that stole a bunch of stuff from a nearby village."
"Stolen goods, you say? What a coincidence!" He then motioned to a large bag behind him. "Because while I was waiting for you to show up, I just so happened to find this thing just sitting around! And wouldn't you know it, it's just filled with a bunch of really valuable stuff.
"Seriously?" I replied with shock
"Of course not, you moron! I'M the guy that stole all this stuff!" Alpha then shook his head. "You know, for a guy that manages to keep get on my nerves a lot, you really are an idiot."
I clenched my fist. "Hey! I'm not an idiot! I'm just a very literal person!"
He just shrugged. "What's the difference? They both sound like the same thing to me."
"Shut up!" The orange crystals on my arm and leg enhancers lit up, and I dashed right towards him at top speed. Unfortunately, Alpha saw it coming from a mile and simply dodged out of the way. By the time I realized my mistake, I got yet another kick to the back.
"Man, you REALLY don't learn at all, do you?" Alpha mocked. "All these years of running into crossing paths and you're still as predictable as ever!"
I gritted my teeth. "We'll see about that!"
Once again, I dashed towards him. Rather than just try and punch him the face, I went in for several jabs to his chest. I noticed that a few of them managed to hit him, and I couldn't help but feel good on the inside. My fighting had definitely gotten much better since the last time I fought him, and I had even learned some new moves as well.
"I'll admit, that wasn't too bad," Alpha remarked as he brushed himself off from my barrage. "But we both know that you'd already be down if it weren't for those enhancers."
"That's not true!" I protested. "I've just gotten better!" With a possible opening in sight, I lunged right towards his face with the intention of punching him.
Imagine my surprise when he caught it.
Before a second could pass, my arm was being twisted in a very forceful way. I couldn't help but yell out in pain. Alpha started to twist my arm backwards, and it wasn't long before I was on my knees. A few moments later, I felt a kick to the side that sent me flying into yet another pillar.
"It's like I said before," Alpha said as he cracked his knuckles, "you never learn."
I groaned in pain as I got up onto my feet. So perhaps charging at him was a bad idea. And since I couldn't use my enhancers for combat that already puts me at a disadvantage. If I wanted to beat him, then I needed to get in close. I just need to think of a way to paralyze him long enough for me to do my thing.
Fortunately, I had Fulgur.
Just like the other times, I charged right at Alpha. The spirit just scoffed. "Trying the same trick again, are you?" He got into a fighting stance. "It's no wonder I always beat you."
I smirked. "Not this time, buddy!"
Without hesitation, I quickly grabbed Fulgur from his holster and pulled the trigger. A small bolt of lightning shot out the weapon. As luck would have it, Alpha was unprepared for my trick. While the shot didn't exactly hurt him, it did stun him long enough for me to get in close.
As soon as I was in front of him, I started punching in directly in the chest. All the frustration from all of my losses came out in the form of a brutal onslaught to the chest. Once my mini barrage came to end, I noticed that Alpha looked dazed and injured. No doubt that the power boost from my arm enhancers had a helping hand in that.
"This time, I'm going to walk away victorious!"
With nothing else left to do, I proceeded to deliver one final punch to the chest. This was it! The moment I've been waiting years for! I was finally going to beat-"
What the-!? That's not-!
The next few seconds felt like a blur. The first thing I saw was that Alpha wasn't in front of me anymore, and had just disappeared in the blink of an eye. Before I could even process what happened, someone else's arm wrapped around my stomach. To finish it off, I felt myself get thrown to the ground with a lot of force. (Seriously, the impact made cracks in the ground).
And looking down on my injured body was him.
"Not bad Xavier," Alpha commented while applauding sarcastically. "I guess you really have improved since last time. Heck, if I hadn't known about your little electro-pistol, you probably would've won!"
I groaned in pain as I tried to talk. "...That's...not….How….did…you..."
"Avoid that?" he finished. "I guess they never told you that I'm a master of illusions. Not even half angels are immune to those things, though I never thought I'd have to use one on you."
I hit a what now!? That slimily little-!
Alpha just shrugged. "If it's the reason that nobody's ever caught me, then I don't give a darn how cheap that is."
If I hadn't been in so much pain, I probably would've been stupid enough to try and attack him again.
"Well, as fun as this has been, I've got places to be," Alpha replied. "But before I bounce, there's something I've been meaning to ask you for quite some time." He crossed his arms and put a devilish grin on his face.
"How'd a loser like you become a half angel in the first place?"
"Until next time Xavier!" He waved at my fallen body as he walked away. I heard the sound of him picking up the bad of stolen items, followed by the sound of what I think was a motor bike moving farther into the distance.
And for the first time in a long time, I did nothing.
I didn't try to get back up to chase after him. I didn't reach into my pocket to play on my phone. I didn't even get frustrated at what just happened. I just stayed there on the ground without moving like I was trapped in some kind of daze; even my wing was completely motionless. All I did was look up at the starry sky while lost in my thoughts.
"Maybe he's right."
I didn't want to admit it. I didn't want to believe it. But in my case, it's better to just accept the hard truth rather than live an eighteen year lie. If there's one thing I know about being a half angel, it's that it's a privilege. Not everyone gets the opportunity to become one in the first place; you have to earn it. You need to have been someone special, someone that stood out from the crowd during your lifetime. But me? I was just some gamer whose life got cut short.
How am I supposed to play the part of the hero when I'm not even that special?
It didn't take long for me to start feeling cold. If I hadn't been in so much pain, I probably would've found someplace warmer to stay for the night. But since I move properly at the moment, I just decided to camp out here. It's not like there was anything else out here anyway.
I managed to turn on my side to start making myself comfy. It wasn't exactly a soft mattress, but it'll do for now. I then used my wing as a makeshift blanket for a means of warmth, though it didn't help as much as I wanted it to. With nothing else to do or care about, I just waited for myself to fall asleep.
It was the longest fifteen minutes I ever experienced, and it wasn't from boredom.