Category: Fiction


Hey guys. In celebration of nearly reaching 2000 views and 100 followers, I have something for you. the (Pre-first draft, I guess) chapter of a new book I’m working on: “Undesirables” , a superhero story told from the perspective of the villains. I’m enjoying writing it a lot, and I hope you guys will let me know what you think of it. Enjoy.

Note: No need to point out typos or mistakes, I probably know about them by now.Plus, WordPress has messed up paragraphs a little, so there may be spaces where there shouldn’t be at times 😉

-1-

Risking a glance behind him as he burst through the apartment block’s side door and tore down the alleyway, Beckett couldn’t see his pursuer. But he could hazard a guess that he was close behind.
This was monumentally bad. Weeks of preparation, reading through dossiers of his target, finding a location he was guaranteed to show up at, planning his hideout and escape routes, even pissing in empty jars so he didn’t have to pause his stakeouts and after nights of waiting, when he finally shows up, it all goes down the drain when he decides to turn around at the worst possible moment to see Beckett’s speckled eyes staring right at him through a pair of binoculars. From his vantage point in the third floor apartment overlooking the street, he’d thought he’d covered everything. But he realised, as he backed into one of his jars, that when it came to it he was just shit at spying at people.
That, or Snowfall had discovered psychic powers, and kept them a secret from him all this time. He missed nothing, it would seem.
He had hastily shaken his foot to get rid of any broken glass or urine that still clung to his shoe, and made a mad dash out of the apartment block into the cold Chicago night. If he wasn’t being chased by a dangerous and lethal super-powered freak, Beckett would have stopped to turn the air blue swearing. This could have led to something big. This would have led to something big. Snowfall, one of the world’s oldest and most renowned vigilantes, taken in thanks to the brave actions of Sam Beckett, a simple informant. It would have at least been worthy of a promotion, maybe becoming a full field agent if he’d played his cards right. The Coven wanted Snowfall. Badly. Any scrap of information that would lead to them getting their grubby hands on him would be a godsend to them, and the person who handed it to them would be reimbursed greatly for all the trouble they went to procure it. Promotions were the very least they could do.
Of course, right now, he didn’t really have any information to show them and was running for his life from a man able to create and control ice. And he happened to be running through Chicago on one of the coldest days winter so far. Luck was on the “good guy’s” side, it would seem, as he tried to avoid the icy puddles that littered the alleyway.
He really hated superheroes. Ever since real life superpowers had been brought to the attention of the world, all hell broke loose. You’d hear about it on the news: children dying in homemade attempts to acquire powers, millions of dollars spent by the rich and powerful in the hope of finding a way to shoot lasers out of their eyes. It was all for nothing, of course, but that didn’t stop them. All they wanted was to be like them. Different, unique, free of the chains that came with regular life. Beckett only had one question for those people: Why? Why try to become someone who was seen by many inside The Coven as a freak of nature, an outcast?
As a result of this landslide of adoration for vigilantes like Snowfall, some tried to be more like them then others, and those were the people Beckett hated the most. While some merely tried to have powers for the sake of having powers, others took to the streets to take the law into their own hands, to uphold justice, just like those brave super-powered men and women who did the same every day. Why they wanted to was anyone’s guess, but most would wind up dead in a gutter with a bullet in their head, unaware of just how in over their heads they had been. But the ones who didn’t, the ones who started meeting up with like-minded people, were dangerous. Lynch mobs could form as people accused others of crimes, sometimes requiring the intervention of the very people these people were trying to be like. Whole militias would rise with the intent of ‘peacekeeping’, but would usually end up as bad as the people they swore to eradicate. Anyone and everyone with a mask and a weapon if sorts wanted in on the action. With the introduction of superpowers into the world, chaos was ensuing. The whole novelty of having superheroes may have fooled others into accepting this change in the status quo, but not Beckett. He saw past this change for what it really was: hell on earth, or at least the lead up to it.
His mind snapped back to the present as he cleared the alleyway. He made a mad dash for the next apartment block across the street, trying to keep a steady foot on the icy road. It wasn’t easy and the fear of being caught by Snowfall wasn’t helping much. Managing to slide across to the sidewalk, he looked back to check for his pursuer. Beckett could find no trace of him. Had he actually given chase? Or had he overlooked the hideout? It was possible, in this weather, that he might have merely glanced in his direction and had seen nothing…
It was at this point that something picked its moment to land right in front of him. Beckett yelped and jumped back, losing his footing on the sidewalk and landing unceremoniously on his ass. Staggering back on his hands and feet, He looked up to see a giant of a man wearing hooded cloak. standing over him.

Everything about Snowfall looked like it was ripped straight out of the medieval times. The blue tunic and leather jerkin that fit snugly around his torso, the brown leather boots, the gloves and bracers, even the long cloak and hood that shielded his face gave him the look of a old worn traveler, a lost soldier. Here stood a superhero, in all his pretentious glory.
“Beckett?”
Watery grey eyes stared down at Beckett, and he could see Snowfall’s brow furrow in confusion.
“H…hey.” Was the only think he could bring himself to say. He didn’t know whether or not he was shivering from the cold or the fear. Snowfall tilted his head, like a dog trying to figure out what you were saying to it. He was obviously confused that the person he caught spying on him was a trusted ally to him in recent months. Nevertheless, he offered his hand out to Beckett. Taking it to pull himself up, Beckett noticed that even through the thick gloves he wore, his hand was deathly cold. One of the downsides to his powers, he guessed.
Snowfall still looked concerned as he helped Beckett of the ground. “You seem to be in a hurry.”
Beckett could only smile sheepishly. “Snowfall, you’ve got it all wrong” he mumbled, trying not to trip over his words, “This is all just a misunderstanding, I… I can explain myself, why I was here, I mean..” Beckett’s mind hadn’t caught up with his mouth though, and he struggled to think of something, anything that could get him out of this. But nothing came. He had caught him right in the act, their was nothing he could say to argue otherwise. What came next was anyone’s guess…
He wasn’t a man to be taken lightly. At just under 6″5, Snowfall towered over most folk. Broad shouldered and imposing, he was the type of person who drew attention to himself no matter what. Although the lower half of his face was obscured by thick layers of a scarf of sorts, what little Beckett could see of his face looked worn and scarred, showing His age.
Snowfall’s expression turned from concern to confusion. “Explain what?” the look on his face was so genuine, Beckett paused.
“W…what?”
“I saw you running like a madman down the street, you looked like you’d seen a ghost. Everything alright?”
Beckett’s mouth couldn’t help but fall open in disbelief. Was he that stupid? He had been staring directly at him through the window, of course he had seen him. He’d have to have been monumentally idiotic to not add 2 and 2 together and realise Beckett had been running to get away from him.
But Snowfall genuinely seemed worried about his safety. Incredible. He was that stupid.
Trying to compose himself, Beckett did his best not to laugh at the brainless lummox of a man that stood in front of him. Perhaps he wasn’t as perceptive as he thought.
“No, I’m fine, really.” he replied, warmly patting Snowfall on the shoulder. “Just trying to get out of the cold. With you around, it’s no wonder I’m freezing my ass off.”
Snowfall grinned and Beckett chuckled, glad to put that matter behind him. He could wait for a while, bide his time. Surely he’d get a second chance to get something useful to The Coven. The thought of promotions came back to him, and for a split second, he relaxed, letting the tension in his muscles go as he laughed.
As it turned out, a split second was all Snowfall needed.
Immediately, snowfall dropped the grin, and grabbed Becket by the collar of his coat. Before he even knew what the hell was happening to him, jets of ice burst from below Snowfall’s free hand and feet, propelling them up the side of the apartment block. Beckett could only cry out in horror as he was heaved over Snowfall’s shoulder. Facing the ground, there was nothing he could do but watch the ground become smaller and smaller, climbing higher and higher with each passing moment until they were the height the roof of the complex, at which point Snowfall flew across the building and unceremoniously dumped him onto it. Beckett landed in a heap on the roof, cursing and shouting as his arm took the brunt of the fall. Broken? Maybe. Trying to rise to his feet, he could see Snowfall hovering daintily over him, his gaze fixed on him.

“I’m not one to sound threatening…” he began.

“Bull,” Beckett managed to cough out, “you’ve been threatening ever since you put on that costume of yours.”

Snowfall’s stare didn’t waver “I don’t want to sound threatening, but I don’t like it when the people I put my trust in are watching me behind my back.”

“Well, it’s not like you didn’t expect a rat like me to stay loyal for long, did you?” Beckett grimaced, but managed to stand upright, his left arm bruised and aching like mad.

Landing on the roof himself, Snowfall started walking towards Beckett, his eyes always fixed on him, flickering every now and again to his arm, waiting for him to pull a weapon. Perhaps he was even tempting him to. “Oh, I don’t know about that, I thought you were quite a nice guy. For a rat.”

Beckett started backing away from the slowly approaching Englishman, clutching his battered arm. Trying to scramble an explanation was difficult when he was trapped on the roof of a building late at night with his arm sending jolts of pain up and down his body. “Look, I dunno how thing’s are working out between us right now, but can I go out on a limb here and guess I’m not your best friend right now?”

Snowfall shook his head. “Why were you spying on me?”

Beckett laughed, causing his arm to shake with pain. It was a guttural laugh, and Beckett noticed how psychotic it had made him sound. Maybe he was more scared of him then he was willing to admit.

Snowfall’s step never faltered across the snowy rooftop. “I’m not going to ask again, Beckett. Why were you here? Who sent you?” There was something in that tone of his that made Beckett pause, and begin to sweat, despite the freezing temperatures.

“I… whatever a freak like you can do to me, I swear, they could do it a lot worse.” He had momentarily found his courage, but immediately lost it again when he realised Snowfall had stopped walking.

“We’ll have to see about that, won’t we?” he mused and began walking towards him again. Beckett started moving faster away from him, pain still raking his arm. He was breathing heavily now and something deep down was screaming at him. “Panic, panic, for the love of God, please, do something.” The only thing that came to mind though, was to keep backing away from the man spouting ice from his fingers. It was a horrible plan, but it was the only thing that seem to make sense. “Keep backing up, get away from him, get away,” the voice inside of him was crying. He could feel tears welling up inside him, he had never been this scared before. Why was he so scared? Snowfall was getting closer, walking faster towards him. Beckett’s cheeks were red, and he was starting to tremble. “Get away,”the voice was screeching at him, and now Beckett had begun shouting it out loud, “Get away, get away, get away!”…

And then, his foot was over the edge of the roof. Beckett stumbled, surprised that he had reached the end of the roof without knowing it. He struggled to keep his balance, one foot hovering over empty air. He shot his arms forward, blindly trying to grab the space between him and Snowfall, as if he could pull himself forward with it. He saw Snowfall’s eyes widen as he realised what was happening, he lurched forward, trying to grab one of Beckett’s outstretched hands. Too late, he thought, as he slipped over the edge.

The last thing he saw was Snowfall jumping off the roof after him, frantically trying to catch up with him as he plummeted to the ground.

The second-to-last thing to go through Beckett’s mind was how lucky Snowfall was to be able to fly and how jealous he was that he could survive all this.

The last thing to go through it was the pavement.

When you start out as a writer, you either A: produce terrible content, or B: rush things out without reading over them.

As it happens, I did both.

I (less than) proudly present:

Henchman.

-Fiachra

Sovo, attempting to look inconspicuous, pulled the collar of his trench-coat closer as he walked down a side alley of town. The snowy town of Glacia wasn’t a place you could go unnoticed easily in, one reason being the size of it, and another being that every resident would stare a stranger down as they passed, searching for anything to identify them by. What they would do next would depend on whether or not they had a certain badge pinned to your lapel, which in Sovo’s case, he did. “Still”, he thought, his mind wandering in an attempt to shrug off the sharp eastern European winter, “never hurts to be careful” and considering what came next, and how long it had taken him to get to here, he wouldn’t want anyone following him yet.

For 6 months, S.I.S, (or MI6 as the British public affectionately called it) had briefed and trained him to play one of the most convincing roles he could. At the cost of several other agents, a link had been made between their target, going under the alias of ‘Reeve’ and the privately owned military company known as ‘Boreal Security’ a well known private military contractor that had been involved with shady figures throughout its history, despite its board of directors’ and their own army of lawyers’ claims of innocence. For those 6 months, Sovo had been trained in Boreal’s method’s of fighting, built up a lifetime of back story as a vengeful northerner from a poverty-stricken family, and had been inserted into the ranks of Boreal, where he made a name for himself, and earned his badge, a badge which the locals of Glacia feared and hated

He, of course, was forced to kill to get to where he was. Some had been innocent, some not. All where necessary to ensure his cover wasn’t blown. To ensure he could be here, today, sneaking through a back water town where Reeve had made his complex, hoping to make it to the warehouse where Aaren had promised to meet. Where he could send the first communication back to S.I.S in a year. Once he had done that, they could formulate a plan to trap Reeve here. But everything hung on getting that call out.

The man he was meeting, Aaren, was a local of the town, and had been brought on by Reeve as a lieutenant, due to his skill with computers. After he had shot Aaren’s brother dead, of course. Aaren had particular disdain for Reeve, which gave Sovo cause to trust him. After agreeing to meet him, Aaren had promised to get a line back to S.I.S with the information on how to, that Sovo gave him.

As the alley curved back into the main road, Sovo snapped back into the present. Except for several whispering town members, this part look utterly devoid of Boreal troops. But Sovo couldn’t focus on this small note.

The Warehouse was right in front of him.

Inside, the cold air became no warmer, and Sovo still fidgeted with his collar. The air inside the warehouse tasted of copper, as metal crates stacked on top of one another rusted into piles of dust. The building was decrepit, and worn with age. Sovo flicked a light switch at the door, which dimly illuminated the rows of crates that were piled around him. The Cold winds had shattered one of the windows, and snow was visible on top of some of the crates. Aaren was no where to be found

Passing by one row of crates, he heard the groan of metal. Spinning around, he was met with the sight of empty air. Nothing.

Giving a nervous chuckle, Sovo, returned to his search for Aaren. This was quickly spiraling downwards. If Aaren had not shown up, than he had no way of communicating with S.I.S. Or worse, Aaren had gone to Reeve with the hope that by turning Sovo in, he could gain more power in Reeve’s operations.

Panic started to flood Sovo’s mind. His training was good, but after a year, he was a wreck. He needed to find Aaren, if he was here, and fast.

That’s when he noticed a figure leaning over a lump in the corner, next to an old payphone.

Despite this curious scene, relief washed over Sovo starting toward the figure, he noticed a few things. The man was tall, widely built, with what appeared to be a white motorcycle helmet on his head, over white standard Boreal fatigues. Specks of red dotted his side, and as he turned to meet Sovo, the lump came more into view, looking much more humanoid.

It was a body. Aaren’s body.

Sovo stopped as the assailant stared at him. Then he raised and opened his clenched fist, revealing phone receiver, torn from the pay phone.

The man cocked his head, grunted, then ran right at Sovo.

This is another story I wrote early on. More of a test in imagination than anything else. Any criticism is more than welcome. Enjoy:

Somewhere, there is a desert, stretching across an entire planet, sand a sunset orange. This planet revolves so slowly that days span decades. One side is constantly bathed in sunlight, the other in a freezing dark. It is unkempt and untouched, like a photo. If anyone were to see this place, they would call it beautiful. Others would call it hell But the geography of this landscape is irrelevant, though, as there is only one species living here that will ever see it in its entirety.

Brutes.

In this desert there are hundreds of colossal beasts that roam the area known as Brutes. Each is unique in their appearance, no two are alike. Various textures make up their skin, some extravagant in colour, with fur shades of colours we can only ever dream of seeing, some with skin of marble, without a single flaw or mark on their bodies.

Their behaviour, however, remains the same, and follows one simple path: walk. Brutes will never stop to feed (Brute’s have no reason to breathe either, which leads to most having no mouth), to graze, to mate (There is no record of a Brute’s reproduction cycle). They have no other purpose, other than to constantly travel, and to ensure it’s survival, however little danger the outside world poses. It could be argued that these creatures are not even sentient, merely autonomous life forms dedicated to these few purposes.

But no matter the case, the Brute does not only hold a responsibility for it’s survival. It also holds a more physical, load.

A race. An entire species, a society, fills every crevice of their being. These creatures, these living continent, are, in a way, more alive than any of us can hope to be. Like the Brutes, each civilisation is different, so I endeavor to focus on only one: The Konok, as its inhabitants, The Nopok, name it. They are notable for having the most thriving, most variable culture known to inhabit a Brute.

Like all civilisations, landscape dictates culture, as culture dictates personality. Each part of the beast has a landscape wildly different depending on which part it is, and with that, the attitude, shape and community of the people living there.

The Nopok that have chosen the torso as home are, obviously, the most numerous. They make up the majority of the species, and their type can be found almost everywhere within the Konok. They are the most average-built, as their community has no favoured profession, though their advancement technology wise should be compared to that of the first colonies in America, such as Jamestown, the natives being some of the less well off of the species. They are lean built, skin a cloudy grey. They have a less gifted hearing ability, due to being near so many of the Brute’s organs. Their hairline is short, almost receding in appearance, but apart from this, they are very humanesque. Their is very little change in build or look during a life cycle, with only the inner cells of their body dying, their skin and other extremities remaining the same. Because of this, a lot of effort is put into aesthetics. It is common for fashion to be extremely varied from week to week, due to the amount of focus put into beauty, both male, and female, a focus not seen in other types of Nopok. As such, being the most common, there is an overall air of superiority floating around the population. Racism and discrimination is not unheard of, with many a riot breaking out simply from members of other sub-types of Nopok. These people are the only of their kind who have a form of time based of off a day/night cycle. The Konok’s heart, for such a large creature, only beats very rarely, and will eclipse any light coming into the torso. As such, These Nopok base their days and nights off of the beat of the creatures heart.

Those that have the good fortune to inhabit the legs are built for endurance. Subject to some of the worst earthquakes in the Konok, they have evolved to survive impacts and shifting. Stocky, thick skinned and hairless, they have kicked and screamed in a struggle to let their society to survive, despite their falling numbers and lack of technology. Favouring craftsmanship and construction, housing is large and immoveable, usually focused around the best farmland and supplies. Houses usually included large amounts of people, to allow their population to thrive. As such, most of them are selfless towards there own, though they tend to shun those who leave them for a better life in the torso. Though mock for their backwards culture and discriminated, those Nopok from the legs our undoubtedly needed by others for their knowledge of building.

The Nopok of the arms, though only just reaching the technological age themselves, have long served as the custodians of the Konok. Scholars and scientists, their physical forms, although taller, are similar to those of the Nopok in the torso. However, their skin is a milky white, which has led to much racism along the borders and to those who choose to study in the torso. Their genetic code, however, has imprinted the knowledge of the Brute inner workings to them, leaving them as the only ones who can manage the health of The Brute, and its safety from disease and injury. This work leaves them precious little time for anything else, and most children are set to work during their earliest years, managing the Brute wherever possible. Despite this job, they are distant towards other subtypes, seeing them as obstructions to their duties, and are zealous in their persecution of those who interfere.

There are many areas which are, for the most part, uninhabitable. The lower torso is a mess of organs, and only the most unlucky soldiers and scientists are sent there to clear away infections or creatures away. Lower still is a cesspool of rubbish and centuries of garbage, a place (for obvious reason) is unsafe for colonisation. Closer to the heart, the more noise there is. Those who pick a bad time to come hear may be deafened by the beats, as if a bell tower had fallen on them. Finally, it is widely thought, though unknown if true, that the outside atmosphere is toxic to the anatomy of a Nopok.

Finally, there are those that live inside the head of the Brute.

Little is known about them, as the neck of the beast is sealed off, and patrolled by hired Nopok from other areas. Paid generously, they themselves are unaware of what lies beyond the wall. However, they are known to be the most technologically advanced of the species, due to the equipment guards are given at the wall.

However, rumours persist of a race of Nopok living outside this Brute. If one were to sneak through the cracks in the Brute’s skin (Guarded as well by the ‘Neck Soldiers’) then one might discover hanging cities built around the colossal body.

Cities, filled with mechanically gifted, very much not Nopok, very angry creatures.

I figured with all my blathering about me being a writer, I’d need some proof, so here it is. Part one of a rough draft of ‘Irvine’s Everest’:

 

These letters were received by Rebecca Langford, wife to Jacob Sacramento, renowned biologist and lead scientist on the Mt. Everest expedition of Patrick Jenneke, representative of Helix Biolabs in June 2013. What Helix Biolabs’, Jenneke’s and Sacramento’s reasons for climbing Everest is unknown, but the expedition had no known survivors. Helix continues denies any knowledge of the happenings on the mountain, saying Jenneke and Sacramento had been made redundant months ago. These letters, and what was found on the mountain, have been enough to charge Helix Biolabs with corporate espionage and unethical research.

Member’s of the expedition, several sherpas under Jenneke’s employment, and members of a Helix Biolabs security detachment have all been found dead on a path up the northern slope of the mountain, leading to a camp built by the expedition. Many sherpas looked to be in the process of fleeing, and were found to have been shot, most likely by the security force. Other sherpas and members of the expedition were found with contusions and heavy bruising caused by physical blows by a human arm, though considering the force of the impacts, this seems almost impossible. In the camp itself, Jenneke, along with the leaders of the expedition were found torn to pieces, as if attacked by a wild animal. Jacob Sacramento remains to be found. These are his last known correspondences to Rebecca.

1st June, 2013

Dear Rebecca,

The group has begun our ascent! We set off from Tibet to the Northern base camp, similar to Mallory and Irvine when they set off. I wonder, will we ever become as notorious as Mallory and Irvine, or Hillary and Norgay, or Shackleton and Crean? What we have the chance to achieve here would immortalise us in history forever. I know I’ve told you little, but I’ve told you all they’ve permitted me to. I couldn’t risk losing my position here on the expedition. As head scientist, I’ll be one step closer to fulfilling some of my wildest dreams, thanks to you and your perseverance. You pushed me into science as a kid, you pushed me into my research, and you made me agree to join Jenneke’s expedition on Everest. I can’t thank you enough.

Admittedly, the Northern ascent is worse to climb, but it’s easier to get through politically. Considering what we’re doing here, I’d rather not get stuck in Nepal right under the Chinese’s noses.

I’ll write again when we reach the Rongbuk Glacier.

All my love,

2nd June

Dear Rebecca

We met the sherpas at the base camp at the base of Rongbuk Glacier, rather than the ‘tourist’s’ base camp at the monastery. The sherpas were anxious about this, but more so about what we were doing. They haven’t been told what they’re carrying, though some complain of it’s weight. They have been forbidden to ask about or check the contents of their bags, and some have been threatened by the guards we’ve brought along. I find Jenneke’s taste in security to be sub-par. He relies on men with brute force as a skill: men not suited for a delicate procedure such as this, made even more dangerous by the threat of Mt. Everest’s climate

Originally, only 3 of the sherpa’s leaders were told what this expedition was for, and what was in the bags. 2 of them, with some persuasion, agreed to stay on, provided they keep their new-found knowledge a secret. The third was… not so willing. He refused to do so, and I haven’t seen him since we began the climb, where some of Jenneke’s men stayed behind to negotiate. They returned when we made camp today, saying he was unwilling to join, but agreed to keep quiet about the whole thing. How they managed to keep him silent is a mystery to me, but I’m far too concerned about the task at hand to think about it.

Any number of things could go wrong. If any of the sherpas find out our intentions, the whole convoy will know. We could have a riot on our hands if they disagree with the plan. On a mountain, this could prove disastrous for everyone. And there’s the matter of the tests we will perform. I oversaw the design, the testing, the approval of this drug and the equipment, but I still can’t help feeling this will go wrong. If it doesn’t, we’ll be credited with providing near immortality for the human race. If it does, we will be damned for our work. I pray I haven’t said to much already. Jenneke can be paranoid at times. Damn him for his secrecy!

Love,

Jacob

7th June

Dear Rebecca,

We’re at camp 5, after days of acclimatising, and only . I’ve barely noticed, but some of the security detail had to be moved down from the mountain, complaining of altitude sickness at camps 3 and 4. I doubt they’ll rejoin us. But this isn’t what concerns me.

A group of sherpas were spotted by Jenneke himself looking into their bags out of curiosity. It was all just medical equipment for testing brain activity, but it was enough for him to want to have them pulled aside, and taken over a snow bank, out of sight.

I think they’ve been killed. Jenneke’s a madman, he’d kill us all just so no one finds out. The men sent down from altitude sickness, the third Sherpa, they’re probably dead as well.

To hell with Jenneke’s secrecy. If this goes awry, and it may well, I need someone to know what we did here. Someone needs to know my work.

For 4 years, I’ve been involved in Helix’s Research & Development team. With the near unlimited resources of the Biolabs, we’ve had immense success. Organic prosthetics, reanimating dead tissue, the list goes on. But there was one accomplishment we all had are sights set on. The ability to reanimate and regrow dead glial cells and neurons (brain cells) and tissue. And we were able to synthesize something, something we believed could give humans new life, prevent cancerous cells from causing brain damage, prevent or even reverse necrosis, the list of possibilities was enormous. But we needed a cadaver. A perfectly preserved corpse, one with little damage to the nervous system and brain.

And then Helix showed us there greatest secret. The location of Andrew Irvine. No one had ever been successful in recovering his body, yet Helix had somehow found the location, with only he cold as his murderer. He was the perfect subject. It was wrong, inhuman, but if there was a chance it could save millions of lives in the future, is it so wrong? Only time will tell. I hope we can reach the second step, where Irvine rests, before the expedition descends into madness.

I love you, dearest Rebecca,

Jacob

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