Chapter 6 The Beginning – Waking Up to a New World (Part 2)

Chapter 6 The Beginning – Waking up to a new world (Part 2)

Not a moment had passed before the announcement had been made when I suddenly felt a soothing feeling running down my spine, touching every bone and muscle in my body. It felt so warm and natural…

It’s such a pleasant sensation that I don’t even wonder what’s happening and just embrace the feeling. Such a welcome change from the previous pain.

I let myself wallow in this feeling for a few seconds before thinking about the announcement. My world is basically gone. That 100 luck may not have been wrong after all. I’m finally going to get a chance to see and do something new, something exciting, something amazing.

Then I stop myself from assuming so many things. I remember my current near-death situation and calm by growing excitement down.

After a few minutes the feeling surrounding my body was gone, and all my numbness and pain is gone with it. I felt normal, better than normal. Excited. I moved the back of my right hand in front of my face and stretched my fingers as I reached up at the stars. Everything felt so close and within my grasp at that moment. I clenched my hand into a fist and let that feeling of excitement that felt so rare wash over me.

Just as I’m about to check my status I hear something.

I was wallowing in this feeling for a few moments too long before I hear groans. I immediately sit up and shift my my gaze all around me. There must be other survivors! I am not alone!

Just as I am about to call out to see if I can find whose around me I hear a scream. A blood chilling scream.
Immediately my excitement reaches a new level. the hairs on arms stand on end and I feel goosebumps run down my back. I push that feeling back and get to my feet and look around me.

Although instead of rushing to any decisions, I decide to find cover and consider my options. This could be dangerous. After that announcement, who knows what’s about to happen.

I can tell that in the distance the ground is no longer even. Rocks are jutting up through gaps and small peaks have formed. All around me I can already tell that all the debris within my sight is likely what’s left of the town.

Instead of feeling sentimental about it, I just I run as quietly as I can towards the screaming. Whoever she is, she hasn’t stopped.

I know I’m getting closer. I can hear more than just her screams now. I can hear the gulping for air and the sound of pain and frustration in the hiccuping noises in-between each scream.

I start to hear more noises… There are other people! As I get to big wall that’s stopped tipping over, half collapsed, I slowly peek my head around the side and take a look. I see a girl around my age sprawled out on the floor weeping and screaming. I don’t understand why she’s screaming so loudly. There doesn’t seem to be anything wrong with her. Doesn’t she realize she could be drawing attention from someone or something other than me?

“Quiet down Hannah!” (Voice)

“Ava’s fine! She’s just passed out! Listen up, you have to calm down and go look and see if you can find anybody to help, we’re not really hurt but my leg is stuck and Ava is underneath me, unless we can lift up this wall, she can’t get out without the wall crushing me.”(Voice)

Even though I think the guy is trying to keep his voice down, he’s not really doing a very good job. In fact the guy is being almost as loud as the girl was. Although I guess if he wasn’t, she probably wouldn’t be able to hear him over her own wailing. If she weren’t hurt and crying, she’d be fairly beautiful. Her long dark red hair, pale but not sickly skin all accents her quite nicely. In fact it’s almost familiar. That voice too. I think… They’re from my school!

I think about my options for a second. I could leave them, this might be more of a hassle then it’s worth. In fact with all of this noise it might not be safe to even be here anymore. On the other hand, if I help them now, it might help keep me alive in the long run, safety in numbers right? Besides, I need information and for all I know they know something I don’t. Even just one detail could be helpful in this scenario.

“Okay, I’m going to help!” Daichi thought to himself as he’d finally finished assessing the situation.

Daichi walked out to the side and called out to the red head, “Hey there, need a hand?” Daichi trying to keep his voice even but making sure it wasn’t too loud. He was being very careful to keep an eye on his soundings just in case.

———————————————

“One second I’m at school, I’m with my friends laughing (Okay not my friends, but someone’s friends and I’m not laughing but I’m certainly enjoying the atmosphere) and everything is normal and the next second I’m dealing with my sister whose starting to lose her shit and my crush is being crushed underneath me (no pun intended and not even the good way).” Kaden thought as he groaned from the pain coming from his leg.

“God damn gods. I never liked them. In fact, up until a few minutes ago I genuinely didn’t believe they even existed! I don’t care what the books say or what my teachers teach me, if I can’t see it, if I don’t have any proof then I call bullshit!” Kaden was pumping himself up, trying to get angry so he could ignore the discomfort of his leg. He realized that even though it hurt, he could still feel everything which was both a blessing and a curse.

It meant his leg was likely fine, to some degree. But it also meant that he’d have to stomach the increasing pain until his sister could figure out a way to get the weight of the ceiling off his leg before things got worse.

Even as Kaden tried to get angrier to divert his attention, he only felt himself getting more deflated. He’d never been a particularly angry individual. In fact, he was fairly easy going. The only things he was passionate about were girls, one in particular.

Instead of getting angrier, he began to recall the beginning of the day and how he’d ended up in this mess.

“I was having another boring and normal day. I was half-asleep in class while thinking about getting into Ava’s panties. The girl is so ridiculously hot. Honestly? She’s the only reason I even bother coming to class. Staring at her from across the room is literally the highlight of my day (It’s only sad if I think it’s sad. I have to keep repeating that to myself).

My life’s goal was to get her to go out with me. Also, before that, to talk to her. I do kind of have a tendency of getting ahead of myself, but it usually works out, sort of.

Sigh. Even I’m not so delusional to think that I’ll actually land her though. She’s the hottest girl in the school, in fact she’s probably one of the hottest girls in the entire town considering it’s not that big in the first place. Still, only 9000 people and almost half of those are women right? Then out of the other half, 1/3 are too old (probably, unless she’s a gold digger, but my Ava is too sweet and innocent to a be gold digger) and 1/3 are too young (my beautiful Ava isn’t into kids, she could have any man, no way she’d choose some prepubescent punk with one of those girly looking angelic faces, definitely not). So yeah, my odds aren’t *that* bad.

I say that to myself just about every day after I’m done fantasizing about our future life together. How amazing it would be, our first date, our first kiss, my proposal, the wedding night hehe…

Before thinking about math (to calm myself down), the occasional drop of reality seeps through. Totally destroying every inkling of an argument for why I have a chance with her.

She can always leave this town. So… That basically destroys the premise for my entire logical argument for having some pretty not-bad-if-not-great odds at landing her. So… Yeah…

Oh, that and again, I’ve never spoken to her. Even I know every time I tell myself I’m going to do it even I don’t really believe I’m actually going to do it.

If I had more than one friend (that one friend being my sister) I’d probably be more upset about my life in general. Thankfully I don’t have too many people constantly dropping reality bombs on my fantasy for the future.

Besides, having only one friend and that friend being your sister is NOT sad! There’s another kid in my class who has NO friends. He just loafs around acting like he’d too good to bother with anyone Mr.Hot-Shot-I-get-good-grades-and-girls-still-like-me. but the idiot is too dumb to even notice or probably doesn’t even care.

Yeah! He’s sad! I have my sister! I’m cool. Yeah, totally cool…

Everything was normal. I was half-asleep and half-wondering what color panties Ava was wearing today, when the sky went dark and then everything went dark.”

Next thing Kaden knew there was a silence that overwhelmed everything.

Then as Kaden was looking up, he noticed the ceiling was beginning to crumble. Before even getting a chance to figure out what was going on Kaden noticed most of the people that were around him were either gone, melded into the floor like some sort weird fusion experiment gone wrong or passed out. He immediately leaped in Ava’s direction while screaming at Hannah to get under her desk. He grabbed Ava and got under the teacher’s desk as he pulled her underneath him while he shielded her and hoped for the best.

As everything started caving in around them he thought “I should be feeling scared or confused but pretty much all I can focus on was how sexy Ava smelled. I mean it’s no wonder I can’t pay attention in class, she’s the one ruining my education! How am I supposed to focus on school work when there’s a goddess in my classroom!?”

He didn’t believe that gods existed, but he believed that if they did, Ava had to look better than all of them. Kaden could only wonder with his train of thought always skewing away from the present, “I bet if they did exist, one of her great great great grandmothers probably hooked up with one of these mangey gods. Then generations down the line such an amazing piece of art was born. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to be a god after all? I mean, if I can hook up with Ava or Ava quality girls? What else could I ask for?” was the last thing he thought before everything went dark.

———————————————

When everything went dark and school started to cave in Hannah heard her brother yell at her to get under her desk. Although she’d actually already been half way there. Hannah’s first instinct was to duck for cover, “Kaden is such an idiot, but he’s a good person. Deep-deep down inside, he’s a good person.” she thought while trying to shut her eyes and protect her head.

Hannah had been taking care of Kaden since they were children. Her parents had passed in an accident and they had no family left. Luckily their parents had an estate that would sustain them until they could work themselves. Even so, it was Hannah who was a year older and had stepped up to take care of Kaden. The town had helped to some degree since it was a fairly close knit community. Although there was a limit to the help anyone would really give someone else when they had their own worries and priorities. Hannah had been Kaden’s only family and had taken care of him like a mother would.

Thusly as things were going south really quickly, her last thought before the ceilings begun to cave in were a nice but admonishing thought of her little brother.

There seemed to be no resistance as the ceilings began to simply crumble. It’s was as if in the span of less than a minute, everything around them just fell apart. Hannah was so terrified that she wondered how she’d managed to move and get under a desk in time.

Fearing for her life and Kaden’s, instead of taking action she closed her eyes and put her hands over her ears and just wished it all away.

After what felt like an eternity but was only a few minutes and the ceilings had fallen or stabilized at an awkward angle. The dust was all over the place from the commotion as Hannah opened her eyes. The instant she did, she realized what she had done. She had saved herself and hadn’t even bothered to try to help any of her friends. Unlike Kaden she was quite popular. Various different girls and boys vied for attention on a daily basis. She was popular but she didn’t let it go to her head. She was down to earth and always tried to be friendly and helpful.

She’d always taken pride in being helpful to others, it made her feel better… And a little superior as deep down it made her feel a little better than others as she occasionally remembered how people had been helpful to her after her parents had passed but never at their inconvenience. She’d always thought it was so shallow, that people were shallow and that she should be better than that.

Although as she surveyed her surroundings. Her eyes were starting to burn, her nose sniffling and eyes watering. She tried to stifle her sobs as she told herself that it was no time to have a breakdown.

She tried but she could feel herself growing weak. She felt heartbroken, she’d let everyone down at a moment where everyone needed her most. “I’m… I’m no better than any of them were…” she thought as a brief image of one of an extremely fake friend of her parents flashed in her mind.

“I just let everyone die. Keep it together. I didn’t even try to help. There’s nothing I could have done. I should have helped Chloe” she thought as she struggled to keep herself together.

Part of herself was trying to remind her that if it wasn’t for Kaden screaming at her perhaps she might not even have reacted quickly enough to get under her own desk. “Kaden!” Hannah’s eyes widened as she realized she hadn’t heard Kaden’s voice calling or anything after it all happened.

“KADEN!” The moment Hannah thought about Kaden she snapped back to reality. Hannah screamed his name as loud as she could but there was just too much dust all around for her to see clearly. Before she could think of what to do next the announcement rang out right in her mind. “Kill and survive? Evolve? The gods haven’t forgotten us?” the announcement wasn’t even finished as a second later her whole body was seized with pain.

Every single thought was turned over to the overwhelming pain that left her paralyzed. She wanted to to scream and yell but her body wouldn’t move and just as soon as she thought she was going to die… The pain went away…

Huff… huff…

All Hannah could hear was her own breathing. She was panting and soaked in sweat and dust “I know I was just in pain, but I can’t feel a shred of it anymore, what was that? I need to get rid of the dust I need to know what’s going on. I need to get a feel for my surroundings. I have to find Kaden.” Hannah realized as she screamed “KADEN!!! Can you hear me!?”

A few moments later a voice responded not too far from her “Yeah… I’m still here, still alive. What the hell was that? Did you feel that? I felt like I was being cut apart by a million cuts!” Kaden said, his voice hoarse as if he was still feeling the pain from before.

“Oh thank god he’s still alive. Eh.” she thought as she responded “I think what you felt was different? I just felt pain, I definitely can’t describe it, even if I tried. Are you okay????”

“Eh. No, yes? I mean I’m still alive, so awesome. On the other hand, I can’t move. Definitely trapped and my leg is stuck.” Kaden responded in a more even tone as he was getting himself together.

“Ehhhhh!? Trapped?” Hannah spoke the words aloud as she grasped the situation. <STATUS>

—————————————————————————————————————
| -Status- |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Name: | Hannah Guresu |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Level: | 7 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Race: | Human | Evolutionary Path: | ??? |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Title(s): | Lucky Survivor |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Divine Protection: | None | Attribute(s): | Death |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Health: | 100/100 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Mana: | 350 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Strength: | 5 | Agility: | 6 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Vitality: | 5 | Spirit: | 1 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Intelligence: | 35 | Wisdom: | 45 |—————————————————————————————————————
| Aptitude: | 48 | Ability: | 7/500 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Skill(s): |
—————————————————————————————————————
| None |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Ability: |
—————————————————————————————————————
| None |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Inheritance: |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Unawakened |
—————————————————————————————————————

“Ehh!” Hannah couldn’t help but make an awkward noise as she looked at her own status screen with a gaping expression.

“What is happening? Death? Lucky Survivor? What are the stats? This is totally different from before, why is everything different?” Hannah wondered as her head spun. Turning to look in the direction she’d heard Kaden’s voice coming from,“Kaden! Check your status window NOW!” Hannah yelled at him.

“It’s not really the time for that you know!” Kaden responded begrudgingly before doing as he was told, “Ugh. Fine fine… WHAT!?!”

(Kaden’s Perspective)

—————————————————————————————————————
| -Status- |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Name: | Kaden Guresu |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Level: | 8 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Race: | Human | Evolutionary Path: | ??? |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Title(s): | Unlucky Survivor |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Divine Protection: | None | Attribute(s): | Wind |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Health: | 94/100 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Mana: | 80 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Strength: | 12 | Agility: | 21 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Vitality: | 12 | Spirit: | 1 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Intelligence: | 8 | Wisdom: | 1 |—————————————————————————————————————
| Aptitude: | 31 | Ability: | 8/500 |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Skill(s): |
—————————————————————————————————————
| None |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Ability: |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Unawakened |
—————————————————————————————————————
| Inheritance: |
—————————————————————————————————————
| None |
—————————————————————————————————————

“This is one ridiculous stat window. Everything is completely different. What do these values even mean? Unlucky Survivor? Uhm, I can feel Ava’s breasts. What the hell is this friggin stupid window talking about?” Kaden wondered as he stared at his status screen equally confused as Hannah.

“I think the universe has gone wonky or something. Can the universe go wonky? Is that a thing?” Kaden called out to Hannah.

“No I mean, I don’t know!” Hannah was just as frustrated at Kaden, she knew she didn’t know any more than him.

“I keep trying to focus on the specific meanings, but a sub window won’t pop up! It’s like spell isn’t working the same anymore! It’s refusing to show more information then what’s available!” Hannah called out in frustration.

“What does that even mean? Seriously though, unless you’ve got some awesome giant rubble-moving-mind spell. Can you put it on the back burner for now? My leg is getting worse.” Kaden was trying to play it off but in reality, the pain in his leg really was getting worse.

“Ah! Yeah of course!” Hannah snapped herself out of her curiosity as she tried to figure out a plan.

Meanwhile the dust was finally settling. “I’ll be able to look around and see if there’s anyone else maybe passed out and can help… What…? This can’t be… Is that… Are those…? Eh… Chloe…?” Hannah thought as a frightening sight appeared before her.

Hannah was finally able to see the wreckage of her former school around her. There in the rubble, everything had collapsed in on itself with only one unblemished desk in the entire area. Only her desk was left untouched by the destruction and death.

Around her, not a single person could be found. What she could see, was the blood splattered almost everywhere. The first thing she managed to focus on was a small pale hand hand, with little stars carefully polished into each individual finger nail of the four fingers still left on the hand. The small pale hand sticking out and right next to it, a head as everything seemed to be crushed with only the blood spilling out. Hair still in place in a pigtail wrapping down and over the face of the girl, the expression of her still stuck on her face. The ends of the braid just reaching the light pink lipgloss covered lips and glasses laying cracked and broken right beside those lips.

Hannah started screaming. If she had the inner strength to keep herself focused up until this moment. The remains of her closest friend was the final straw pushing Hannah towards a mental breakdown that just about anyone with feelings of love and empathy would have also experienced.

Overwhelmed by the sight Hannah couldn’t help but scream.

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