Run. Run. Run. That is all in his mind. To run faster.
Faster than anyone else and then he reached Asia, reaching a forest and a dilapidated ruins of a cave when suddenly a portal was opened and without even having time to stop Will enter the portal and arrived in a street full of people.
He stopped and looks around him.
The people on that street look at him with eyes that are full of interest and wariness. They did see a man appeared from a portal.
Each of them distance themselves away from the man
‘Where am I?’ Will ask himself.
This place looked like Earth but it is not destroyed like his Earth. There is also buildings and skyscrapers. This is probably a city
He then looked at the large TV on the huge building in front of him. He could hear the commentator in the TV speaking something and then he hears and see something impossible.
In the footage that was shown in the large TV was a man in black attire, flying in the sky, stopping a crashing plane with his bare hand.
Then the footage shows that the black man in the attire drop down the plane safely in the stadium.
Then the footage shift to the studio.
‘So Professor Ulianov. What do you think of Hyperion action of leaving the plane on the stadium?’
The commentator ask his question
‘Well, I think the question you should be asking how did the plane company built their planes? That should be the question you should be asking instead of blaming Hyperion in this matter. After all he did save countless lives. The responsibility of removing the plane from the stadium should be the air flight company responsibility’
The moderator looks at the Professor and then shifts his gaze to a military general.
‘General Parton, what do you think about Hyperion? It has been known that you are very vocal in the opposition against him? You even intend to bring him into the US State Senate to answer a few questions in his interference against US interest’
‘It has been one year since Hyperion becomes the first world superhero. And in that one year, he has saved many lives. To even interrogate him for his supposed interference in US interest is absurd. Hyperion has always remained neutral in the matter of politics.’ The Professor said in prideful tone.
The General did not seem amused.
‘Here we have a person that could fly through the sky, shakes the world with one punch and you are not worried? Worried that’s someday, he will come for us?’
‘This is fear talking.’ The Professor said.
‘Is it? Is it? Look how easily he stopped the planes. He is not affiliated with anything. We don’t even know who he really is. And he was not the type to share. And you expect the people of this world to place their faith in such person. We are not even sure if he is human.’
The Professor laughed.
‘How could he share this thing with you General? You did try to capture him once. One could understand his distrust toward you.’
‘The point remains. If one day Hyperion decides to no longer protect us….we will be at is mercy. It is important to develop a weapon that could stop him. No to mention every time he fought any of those villains, the property damage amounted to millions. Is Hyperion a force for good?’ The General asked.
Both of them continue to debate. It seems this Hyperion has been this world superhero for a year.
‘Hello’ one of the people in the crowds comes near Will.
‘Who are you?’ The man asked.
‘Can I help you?’ It was a logical question and Will could see there is wariness inside the man eyes.
Well, after all, he did come from a portal. Will was about to answer when he heard a sound on top of his head and he was shocked to find that everyone was looking at the sky.
On the sky with black attire and a symbol of V on the man chest, the man was flying. And Will could see hope in the eyes of the crowd.
The man who was near Will said.
‘Are you new in New York? I always see him before starting my morning. He would always do a fly by during this hour.’
‘Who is he?’ Will ask
Hearing this question the man was startled. No one in this world does not know Hyperion.
The world first superhero.
‘Hyperion. ‘The man answer. Will smiles and then he said thank you.
When the crowd was just about to greet the man who was coming out of that portal, Will run.
And the moment he runs, the only things those people saw was a streak of black lightning.
‘What did I just see!’ One of the people in the crowds said.
‘I can’t believe this!’
‘Is that another superhuman?’ To the people of Earth 2 there is only one superhuman and that is Hyperion.
While Hyperion was flying in the air, on the ground a streak of black lightning slowly gaining speed following him.
On the sky, Azief was looking at the lightning trailing behind him and he smiled towards the Dark Speedster.
Will of course did not miss this. Even at that speed, his sight could not miss it. It was almost like the man flying in the sky was anticipating him.
Then the man in the sky increases his speed, like he was testing him. Will increase his speed and all he could hear was the wind , his heart beating faster than normal for him, , sceneries pass by in a flash, his feet was like illusions as he traverse through forest, mountains, lakes, oceans, villages, cities in a matter of seconds.
It was like they were…..racing.
Yes, they were racing.
His heart beats like a pounding of a fierce war drum, pushing him forward, pushing him to be faster, and he could feel a force, an energy coursing through him, so powerful and so domineering.
And then he feel the air, every part of it, even its particles, feeling the wind on his face, once again, like the time he was racing with the Red Reaper, his feet pushing him faster than he has ever ran before, energy coursing through his veins, every nerve is energized, and he could feel that he is connected to something greater than himself, to a source of speed that is….his.
A source of unlimited energy. A speed source.
Then Azief on the sky which is flying in hyper speed smiles.
‘He felt the lightning’ he thought to himself.
‘He is tapping the speed source.’
But he mused.
‘Fast….but not fast enough. It’s not enough. Let see how much more he could endure’ he said.
Then Azief increase his speed on the sky and the sound barrier was broken. Then a sonic boom could be heard.
Azief was going faster than sound. He reaches Mach 1 in a few seconds and it was like the sky quake.
He was flying near Paris when suddenly the people of France could hear the sonic boom on the sky and then the alarms car blaring and the glass windows shattered.
On the sky, Hyperion was flying leaving awe and fear while on the ground a black lightning was following him.
The people seeing this thought to themselves.
Something is racing.
The US Army, The Russian Intelligence, the United Kingdom MI6, the Interpol was all suddenly alerted when an unknown flying object could be seen flying around the world while a black lightning following him.
All these agencies quickly tries to get the news about the black lightning following Hyperion while at the same time trying to cover the story before it incites panic.
They fear that this is another battle between Hyperion and the Red Speedster.
The last time was awful enough.
A crater of gigantic depth was created on the plains of Mongolia and dilation of time happens there and portals and rupturing of time continuum might happen if not for Mr. Chandra invention.
Azief was flying faster and the wind generated from his flying wash over the environment. The first race between Azief and Will.
Will seeing the person on the sky increase his speed; Will also gritted his teeth and with all of his energy coursing through his body, increases his speed.
Then…he felt it again. Felt that energy. Tapping into a source…of all speed. But at the same time draining power from him.
The more speed he generated, the more energy that is drain from him.
On the sky, Azief was smiling before he suddenly stopped and the force of the inertia of him stopping makes the air around him compressed and explode creating a sound resembling that of a thunder quake.
Then smiling, slowly he floated down, looking as heroic as ever.
With a V on his chest and black capes and accentuated costumes that resembles Superman suits but with darker look, he floated one meter from the ground looking at Will calmly.
‘A speedster’ he said.
‘You’re fast. But not fast enough’ he said his evaluation of Will speed.
There was a silence fill with tension as they stare at each other eyes, trying to gauge each other intention.
They were now somewhere in the desert of Saudi Arabia.
As Azief continues floating there, Will tries to gauge the man in front of him. How powerful he is? Who is he? What is he?
Will only know one person in the entire World Government that could fly and that was Wang Jian who uses artifact to fly the sky.
But the man in front of him doesn’t seem to be using such artifact.
And Will also felt an instinctive fear when he is confronted with the man in front of him. Ar least, Will knows that the man name was Hyperion.
But what makes him hesitates to speak is because the feeling he gets from Hyperion is as the same as the feeling he got from Raymond and Katarina.
The feeling of a being surpassing him. And this feeling is even more intense than what he felt when facing Raymond and Katarina.
The pressure was like being confronted by a celestial being and that eyes….Will doesn’t like that eye that seems to be able to pierce through his soul.
Hyperion is even faster than him.
Reaching a supersonic speed is not easy but Hyperion seems to treat it as a trifle experience.
When someone reaches Mach 1 the surrounding becomes even hotter and requires fast thinking to avoid the obstacles in front of them and the consumption of energy is terrifying.
A pillar formation will exhaust most of his pillars if they run as fast as him and might even destroy their pillars if they continue doing it without reserve.
For Orb Condensing, their colors might fade and become dull until the orb itself becomes cracked.
Will knows his limit was merely Mach 1.5 by his great estimation. And in that speed sometimes he has to lower his speed to avoid crashing to obstacles.
The weakness of Will is that while he could probably be called the fastest man alive, he is weak.
His regeneration is fast but if he compared strength he could not even defeat Wang Jian what else people like Raymond and Katarina.
But the man in front of him…….easily maneuvered himself on the air like the wind, and he doesn’t even seem overspent.
There were times that Hyperion seems like he would crash with a plane or a fighter jet across the skies but he was relaxed through his entire race with him.
Almost as fast as the Red Reaper. Maybe even faster. And stronger. Stronger than Raymond. Stronger than Katarina
Azief looking at Will perplexed expression decided to greet him first.
‘Welcome to Earth Two.’ He said calmly.
‘Earth Two?’ Will say in confusion.
Azief landed himself on the sand and approaches Will but Will instinctively back up…..because of fear.
The moment Will realizes it he was embarrassed.
He realizes that his forehead was sweating and his hand was trembling and then he looks back at the man in front of him and he finally understands.
The man in front of him is even stronger that Katarina and Raymond. He is clear about that now.
At least with Raymond he only felt the fear and can hide it but the man in front of him, even his presence could crush him.
He is more evolved version of humanity than even Raymond.
Azief did not feel offended. He after all realizes the flight of fight reaction other beings felt when facing him.
Azief knows that the speedster in front of him registers him as a more advanced being and as such the flight reaction is instinctively activated.
‘You came from Earth Prime, right?’ Azief said.
‘Earth Prime?’ Will ask perplexed by the term.
‘Our world which experiences a meteor strikes which spawns monster.’
Azief said as he tries to make the speedster trust him and hearing this Will also understand something.
‘You are from my earth?’ He quickly grasped what Azief as trying to tell him.
He quickly accepts that this earth is not his earth and from what Azief has been telling him this is another earth.
Will then remembers something about this kind of phenomena. Will was not a scientist but he at least read a few comic books during his teenage years. And he utters.
‘To say it simply.’ Hyperion answer. There is no point in explaining it hardly because it does not matter.
‘This is not a good place to talk.’ He then continues.
‘The military will surely realize it by now and their satellite must have been pointed to us to know what we are talking about. Follow me’ he said.
As he floated back into the clouds and began flying forward.
On the ground, Will who was still shocked with Hyperion words a few moments ago finally decided to listen to Hyperion and follows him from behind.
On the sky a dark blur traversing the clouds while on the ground black lightning following behind.
ONCE UPON A TIME
The sounds of the car were blaring and the truck came approaching her. But she doesn’t seem like she realizes it.
Azief was just finishing the night study session.
The principal made them a week stay on the school dorm to do an intensive study session for the Final exam.
Even for people who lives outside the school has to live for a week in the dorm to participate in the study session.
It was mandatory.
Tonight was the last night. Azief was about to go home tomorrow.
But then he came across this scene. He was about to go out the school gate to buy some snack on the stall across the school.
But then he found her. Found her crossing the road like a girl losing her mind. It almost seems like there is no life inside her eyes.
But for some reason, Azief felt melancholic seeing her, walking like that and his heart skipped a beat.
Usually….he would not interfere in this kind of troublesome matters. But now…..this is different.
She is about to die.
So he couldn’t even make any calculation.
When he sees that scene, without thinking of anything, without any calculations, a behavior so unlike him, he runs as fast as he can, tackles her from behind and they landed on the other side of the road.
Azief shielded her from the tar road and get himself scraped on his hand.
The moment he regains his mind, he stares at Sofia and unlike him he yelled.
‘What the hell do you think you are doing?’ And hearing this Sofia seems to be jolted awake and then she realizes the cut on Azief hand.
‘Oh, I’m sorry. I’m sorry’ she said flustered as she tries to check Azief injuries and grab his hand. Azief pull back his hand.
‘Watch around you when crossing the street’ he said as HE was about to go away and go to the snack stall.
‘This is troublesome’ he mused inside his heart. And if he keeps hanging around her, this surely becomes even more troublesome.
Azief was walking away when Sofia hold his hand and said.
‘I’m sorry but I can’t leave that alone.’ Blood was dripping from Azief hand
This night is going to be troublesome he mused as she pulls him along.
This is the first time that Sofia and Azief ever met and talk to each other. And the last time they spoke in their high school life.
At least, that is how its seems to them back then..
IN THE STALL
It was night. For about half an hour after bandaging his hand, she dint say anything. She did not cry either.
She did not bawl out. But tears keep streaming from her eyes which she immediately wipes.
Like…an unspeakable sorrow. Azief did not say anything. Because he did not know what to say.
He doesn’t know Sofia that well.
They sometimes see each other on the way to class, passed by each other on the hall, greet each other politely and that it.
He did not know what problems she faced or what words could be said to console her.
And even if he knew what her problem was, he is sure that she didn’t want to hear such words from him.
Not from someone who doesn’t know her. But for some reason, Azief felt that it is a moral obligation to at least, guard her…..by hiding her tears from others.
The sound of the car passing by and the night wind blowing by, that night was very peaceful.
The moon was not masked by the clouds and the road can be seen as clear as day.
Then with that puffy eyes, she suddenly cries and Azief was reminded of a certain scene on a beach and he looks at her again and feeling something different.
He doesn’t know what moves him that night. But he got up from his seat, put his arms at her shoulders and said.
‘It’s ok.’ And he embraces her.
And as she cries, she could feel the man warmth. And for a moment she could feel that the man embracing her was sincerely cheering her up.
And maybe, that was the first time Sofia really see the real Azief. The class clown people make fun of.
Feeling his warm heart and his true heart in that embrace.
Then as she finally calmed herself down, Azief releases his embrace, his face was stoic and then he went to the counter and pay for the meals.
After that he came back to the table, looks at her and then put a note on her hand.
Then he walked away. Without a word. And in that peaceful night, she could only see his back, fading away.
Slowly she opens the note and there were only two simple words.
And she chuckles.
Her eyes were puffy and red, but she chuckles and it was like all the unhappiness that she felt disappeared for that one moment.
On the note Azief wrote.
Sofia reading it felt that Azief really doesn’t know how to express his feeling well. But the word is also very sincere.
Two words and that is enough to motivate her.
She left the note on the table and then smiling while looking at the moon and breathing the fresh night air she went back to school.
This was the last interaction between her and Azief in high school.
‘Wake up’ and Sofia could feel her body being rocked. She slowly opens her eyes and rubbing her eyes, she could see Loki was in front of her.
Sofia quickly throws a punch and arrow essence shot out and Loki quickly dodges it.
The essence scatters away when it hits the ceiling of her room.
‘Whoa. Didn’t anybody teach you not to punch people with arrow essence?’ He said while smiling mischievously.
‘You know, I still am mad at you.’ She said as she got up from bed clearly feeling annoyed. That dream.
To be honest, the only time she ever met with Azief and the rare moments where she sees Azief nature was that one night in August.
Then as she walked to her bathroom Loki was still behind her. She glares at him
‘What?’ He said feigning ignorance.
‘You know acting like that does not going to make me forgive you that easily.’
‘Oh, come one. We got what we wanted. Sina is free. We even stole a few weapons from the World Government vault. Blowing up their barracks and escape the World Government Golden Cloak Division. I mean, tell me, if not for my information could we achieve all that.’
‘You release Arno without my permission. And I found out that you deceive me.’
‘You didn’t torture him Sofia said as she brushes her teeth looking at her own face on the mirror while Loki was standing outside the bathroom.
‘Did you ask me to torture him? You said to get information from him.’
‘You and he plotted. I thought he was getting tortured. Who knew that you plotted for him to yell to deceive me?’
‘I prefer the carrot approach instead of the stick. And didn’t he give us the location of Sina prison and even the password for the World Government vault? All and all, I think I made a great decision that help empower our group.’
‘That is one thing’ Sofia said as she gargles inside her mouth and clean her teeth.
‘The other thing why did you declare Lord Shadow Group is the one responsible?’
‘Well, since Azief is not yet back, I was using Lord Shadow group for the name of our group. Well, I guess the name is a bit tacky.’ Loki said as he ponders seriously
Sofia was about to blow of her top
‘This is not about the naming sense, Loki! Why did you implicate Azief in our mess?’
‘He is already implicated.’ Loki said calmly
‘How?’ she said as she walks out from the bathroom.
‘Well, I doubt Azief will let you be hunted by the World Government. And he will not let Sina be hunted too. And he will certainly not let me be hunted’ he said arrogantly and Sofia scoffed.
‘In the end, he will implicate himself in the end. What I did was simply to raise his notoriety before he got back.’
‘And for what reason?’
Smiling Loki answer.
‘Well, if Azief going to contend with all of this power he needs to have a faction.’ And then as he was about to continues, he sniff something with his smell.
‘Sina has finished cooking. I’ll meet you at breakfast. Oh, and today we’re going to China.’ he said as he runs to the dinner hall.
Sofia shakes her head.
‘Haih. Azief when will you return?’ she mused.
The Trickster is making a wreck of thing but she was smiling. Living this kind of life is thrilling.
Then she went out as she joined Loki and Sina in breakfast, trading jokes and banter and asking each other how their day was going.
It was like a family of misfit gathering together. Another day passed on Earth Prime.