|When Things Burn
Author: NikkiMakh-KittyKat PM
Okay so I was really unhappy with the ending and I did this one instead for a book report. In total I had like 20 pages. And my mark was excellent! this is when they found the algorithms for Helen of Troy, but all goes wrong. Rated T just in case.Rated: Fiction T - English - Sci-Fi/Tragedy - Words: 4,017 - Reviews: 3 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 1 - Published: 09-11-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8518261
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: This is the alternate ending to The Barcode Rebellion, because I was SO not satisfied with the one that was given. I do not own the barcode tattoo or the barcode rebellion. Enjoy!
Jack ran to the computer on the kitchen table, typing in the characters Amber had written on napkins, paper, towels old envelopes, and even her arm. "I think it's working!" He shouted. They all stared at him, breathless with anticipation. "It looks like it's shutting down." he said again, when things took a turn for worse.
ACCESS DENIED, UNAUTHORIZED PROGRAM USE DETECTED
AUTOMATIC OVERRIDE SEQUENCE NOW RUNNING . . . LOADING 5%
"No." Jack murmured under his breath. "No, no, no!" He shouted, slamming his fists on the table. "This wasn't supposed to happen!" he raged.
"No, Jack, don't tell me that it's over, not after all this." Kayla said.
"Yes, it is! I was so enthusiastic that we found the algorithms that I wasn't paying attention, and ran into a fire wall I should've seen a mile away! Now look what I've done, I've gotten us locked out of their systems!" His voice boomed. "Stupid, stupid, stupid. . ." He muttered.
"No Jack, you're not stupid; don't blame yourself." Allyson reassured him. "Look how far we've gotten with your help; I don't know what we would've done without you, Jack."
"Yeah," Dusa chimed in. "without you, Drakians all over the place would be in waters' sheds because they were caught without barcodes; there's no hacker like you out there, Jack. Don't be so harsh on yourself; after all you're only human."
"Don't give up on us, not now." Kayla said.
"Alright, I'll see what I can do." He made his way back to the kitchen table where Allyson's handheld computer lay; picking it up and studying the screen meticulously. Everyone gathered round to see the master hacker at work, hoping that they could overcome Global-1. Kayla was last to join the group, she took notice of the blue loading bar on the screen.
AUTOMATIC OVERRIDE SEQUENCE NOW RUNNING . . . LOADING 73%
"Wait, what's the override sequence supposed to do?" Kayla asked.
"I don't know exactly, but I can promise you it won't be good. I would be able to tell you, but I can't access the information anymore." He said gruffly. The loading bar was growing faster and faster . . . 79% . . . 82% . . . 94% . . . It was only a matter of time until the mystery of what lies ahead of us, would be uncovered.
LOADING COMPLETE, PROGRAM LIVE IN ALL USERS. . .
The moment the loading bar was full, the vibrating boom of a fighter jet's engines roared above us. Dumbfounded, the whole gang formed a semi-circle around the window. Kayla spied a grey fighter jet flying between a cluster of buildings along the horizon; it weaved in and out of sight when the jet hurled itself in their direction! Faster and faster, every moment brought it closer to them; with it, potential danger. "Um, guys?" Amber said, Kayla noted the fear in her voice; she didn't even need to hear it, they all knew they needed to get out of there, and fast!
"Where's Allyson?" Jack said.
They all turned around to see Allyson sprawled on the floor, her body bursting with convulsions. Jack, Dusa, and Nate were the first ones at her side, trying their very best to keep her head still. "Oh my God," Dusa whispered, looking up to see Kayla's eyes were brimming with tears. "The override procedure; it's happening, now!"
Filled with fear, Kayla looked over her shoulder to see Mfumbe had transitioned from the futon on to the floor. Just like Allyson, in convulsions and quick spasms. She ran to him, kneeling on the floor with Amber and Francis next to her. Clutching his head to try to keep him from shaking, Kayla gently lifted his body up onto her lap; gently rocking him back and forth in her arms. She tried her best to refrain from crying, even though his short spurts of wheezing and coughing didn't help at all. "Kayl-l-la . . ." Mfumbe managed to cough out, before liquidy, clear foam emerged out from the corner of his lips. "Mfumbe, stay with me. Stay with me! Don't go yet, we still have to win this thing, and there's no way we're going to forfeit! Waters didn't win, and never will. I promise we'll find a way around this." A tear rolled down her cheek. "I love you, Mfumbe." Using her thumb, she stroked his temple as she rocked. She knew Mfumbe would never want her to try this, but she did anyway; she communicated with him.
Mfumbe, don't go yet. I'm still here.
It hurt her massively when she communicated; she could feel exactly what Mfumbe was feeling. The back of her neck was being shocked and tazered multiple times. Kayla knew these were the nanobots at work, and that this was what Mfumbe is going through. The sensation began to cause her whole body to tremble, and feel the tiny electric pricks that the nanobots delivered to his spine.
Don't cry, you're beautiful when you smile. Mfumbe talked to her using his mind, using whatever amount strength he had left.
When the pain stopped transmitting to her from Mfumbe, Kayla's heart filled with terror. He stopped shaking, and at the last second she thought she saw a hint of a pleasured look on his face; until it disappeared. "No, Mfumbe? Mfumbe, Don't go!" Kayla screamed, shaking with sobs. Kayla checked Mfumbe's pulse, which she hoped with all her heart was still beating; was gone.
Kayla kissed Mfumbe's eyes shut, and clutched his cool body close to hers. Amber and Francis tried to pry her arms off of Mfumbe torso, but only resulted in Francis taking an elbow to the chest, and Amber shaking Kayla with all her might; more jets streamed by.
"Kayla!" Amber shook. "Kayla! Let go of him, we need to go!" Kayla finally gave up her fight and thrusted herself into Amber's comforting arms. Amber was crying too, even she had to feel sorrow for someone she didn't favor. "I'm so sorry." She said. Kayla had been torn apart with Mfumbe's death. For all Kayla knew, she wanted to take down everything that was Global-1 related. There was so much death in her life; first her father, then mother, Gene, August, now Mfumbe and Allys-
"Allyson." Kayla said softly. She carefully peered up from Amber's arms. "Dusa, what happened to Allyson? Is she alright?" Dusa looked up with red eyes, and shook her head. "No, she's gone."
In an instant Jack got up from Allyson's side and paced about the room, as if Dusa's words were impossible to bear; holding his head in his hands. Kayla heard his heavy footsteps coming towards her. "Okay guys, let's go. We need to get out of here before trouble stirs up, grab whatever you need and we'll meet up at the swing-lo." He picked up Allyson's handheld computer, the chips with the Global-1 information on them, and quickly exited the room slamming the door behind him. They were all dead silent after that, but they still heard the echo of Jack's boots down the staircase. As if on cue, everyone picked themselves up from the hard floor, but only Kayla decided to go after Jack. She made a dash for the swing-lo, knowing what Jack might do if he was in that bad of a mood.
It was three flights of stairs and a short walk later when she spied Jack leaning on the swing-lo; it was out of the trailer and on the pavement. His fists were balled up and pressed up against the swing-lo's black metal exterior; when he began to punch and kick the swing-lo repeatedly.
"Jack, what are you doing?" Kayla asked him, but her words did not stop him. "Jack, stop it! Why did you storm out like that?"
"I don't know, because I felt like it!" He yelled out of breath. "Just like how Global-1 felt like destroying everything!" He gave another swift kick to the swing-lo.
"I know that's not the answer, Jack! Tell me the truth, why'd you leave?" She shouted back at him.
"You know Kayla for a smart girl like you; I thought you'd know why right off the bat. I guess I was wrong about that, I was wrong about everything!" He roared. Startled, Kayla took a few steps backward. "I was the one who killed Allyson, Mfumbe, everyone! It's all my fault!" he delivered three more kicks to the swing-lo, before they both heard something crack; Jack moaned in pain. He began to slide down the side of the vehicle, before Kayla put his arm around her neck to support him. Jack pushed her away. "No!" he shouted "I don't deserve it." He slid down to the ground next to the now dented swing-lo, his hands clasped around his foot.
"Are you okay?" Kayla asked.
"I'm fine." He replied bitterly, Kayla huffed. "Would you please stop being so stubborn and let me help you?" Jack replied with a cold glare. "It's not your fault, by the way; it's mine, it's all because of me this happened." Kayla said settling down next to him.
"That's so dumb, how could it be your fault?" Jack asked.
"If I hadn't been so stubborn and got the barcode; it would have been better for all of us. Sure, we would all be slaves to Global-1; branded like cattle, but no one would be dead." She stared out into the horizon, looking for a sign of movement, a sign of life; Nothing.
"Kayla, don't blame yourself, you did nothing to cause this. Don't you see what I've done? I've killed everyone with a barcode; that's at least over two thirds of the population gone. It's over, and I don't-" He stopped.
KM-6 was approaching the two, long brown hair swaying as she walked. Kayla wondered what she came to them for.
I came for my sister. KM-6 thought.
Thanks, KM-6. I'm fine, do you know if the others are coming?
KM-6 nodded in response, she pointed out towards the horizon. Everyone was making their way to the trucks, ready to leave. Jack and Kayla took that as their cue to get in their trucks, and get as far away from here as possible. "Would you like to take the swing-lo with me?" Jack asked. "Sure." She said. Without saying a word the two got into the swing-lo and took off, with the team trucks behind them. It was miles before anyone broke the silence, until her big mouth did.
"You still haven't answered my question, Jack." Kayla said. "Why did you leave?"
"Kayla, you don't understand-"
"What don't I understand? Tell me, I want to know."
"I liked her, and I didn't get the chance to see if she felt the same." This shocked Kayla. Allyson?
"But I thought you liked me; that day in her apartment, you tried to kiss me."
"I know." He said. "Don't take this the wrong way, but I did like her a lot. You're beautiful and all, but when I showed her the controls for the swing-lo, something in me changed. I was showing her what buttons to press to get it to do whatever, and she smiled at me." Kayla shot him a look like he was joking. "I know, I know, its complete cheese, I know. But the way she smiled at me, it was like we knew each other inside out; and yet strangers." She spied something had rubbed itself on Jack's face, looked to be something shiny. "She had the potential to be someone great, and I took that away from her; I took that away from everybody!" He looked her with sorrow and self-loathing; the shiny thing on his face was actually a tear that had rolled down his cheek. "I wouldn't blame you if you hated me."
"Jack," she began. "I could never hate you." She wiped away the tear from Jack's face, as the two rode away in silence from then on.
The pack of vehicles sped along the Superlink as the sun set on the California horizon. Jack and Kayla ignored the others, who were picking up every barcode resister that they spotted on the way. Now that it was only them and, most likely, Global-1, why wouldn't they? Sure, it would be a bit crowded, but they could use everyone they could get to bring a new future for the world.
Kayla was still in midst of absorbing it all; Mfumbe, Allyson, and everyone else in the world with a barcode were dead, and it was only the barcode resisters and kids under the age of seventeen. She was hoping all this was a horrible dream, or a vision she'd wake up from soon; wake up in sunlight, on the couch in Allyson's apartment, watching Jack and Allyson plot to do something to over-throw Global-1 and their barcodes. She longed for this to happen, to find that all this wasn't real, and never would be.
Why did her life have to become so complicated? Why couldn't she could have just lived life normally with her mother and father, got the tattoo and be normal? Instead she had to be stubborn and follow what she thought was right and rebel. She was ready to give up the fight, throw in the towel. Why shouldn't she? She has already lost everyone she's cared for; Mom, Dad, Mfumbe, even Toz and Mava. Sure, she didn't know them all too well, but they still cared for her like they were family.
An overwhelming sense of self-hatred made came over her, and she began to cry. She cried as much as she could let out; even though Jack had to witness such an event, but she didn't care one bit. Surprisingly, Jack didn't say a word when he saw her cry, Kayla knew why. She had witnessed him cry before and didn't say anything, and now it was his turn to return the favor.
Kayla had cried herself to sleep that day, drowning herself in tears for Mfumbe. She had dreamt of him, when she was sketching him as he read her poetry, "Come live with me and be my love, and we will all the pleasures prove that valleys, groves, hills, and fields, woods or steepy mountain yields." The words echoed throughout the hospital's halls. "Kayla." A voice called, it sounded strangely familiar to her. "Kayla." Mfumbe! She looked up to see Mfumbe standing there in the white-washed hall; he began to stride towards her as if he were walking on water.
"Mfumbe." The word echoed loudly. "Is that you?" He nodded in response. "Kayla, it's me." He said. "It felt like you needed me, so here I am." This made her eyes well up with tears; she managed to force a smile on her face. "Listen, I'm not-" Mfumbe's image began to phase and distort, like it was a hologram with a bad signal. As this happened, the hospital's power went out for a few moments. When the lights came back on, Mfumbe was nowhere to be found; she got up to examine the halls, looking for any sign of Mfumbe.
Turning at every corner of the building, the floor beneath her began to slide in every way. She gripped the wall's rail trying not to topple over, but the walls around her collapsed and revealed a dark, dingy room filled with ashes and knee-deep water. As far as her eyesight could reach, there was no furniture or anything for that matter; just the water lapping at her legs and the darkness that surrounded her. "Kayla." A sinister voice whispered. "Kayla." It called again, but louder. "Kayla." Louder "Kayla." Louder. "Kayla! Kayla! Kayla!" a shadow of black smoke engulfed her, and set her aflame.
"Stop it!" She screamed. She found herself back in the swing-lo, on the ground, safe and sound, but Jack was nowhere to be found. Kayla covered her face with her hands and felt something wet, she had been crying in her sleep. What had she just experienced? A nightmare? No, it couldn't have been, it felt more like one of her visions, but from whom and where did it come from? All of this was so banged out, it made her head spin.
In spite of her sudden headache, she found the strength to climb out of the swing-lo to go look for Jack and the others. She slid out of the darkness of the swing-lo, into the darkness of the night, with nothing but the full moon illuminating her path. Somehow they had landed themselves near a beach.
She checked the trucks and their trailers, but found absolutely no one; not even the barcode resisters that they had picked up along the Superlink. She heard a large amount of footsteps off into the distance and was overtaken with curiosity, and followed. Kayla walked out towards the horizon until she found herself face to face with dark, murky waters lapping on white sand. So she walked further along the moonlit beach, determined to find the others; oh she found the others, alright, but it was something else that made her stop dead in her tracks.
What she had found was unimaginable; line after line of people marching in unison, walking into the water until only the tops of their heads were left. Dusa, Nate, Francis, Jack, Amber, and a few of the 'too resisters, were busy trying to drag the people away from the water. Where was KM-6, where had she gone to this time? Kayla saw Jack dragging someone who looked similar to Allyson; wait that was Allyson! She was marching toward the water like a zombie, just like everyone else.
"Jack! What's going on? Is that Allyson?" She yelled, but Jack was too busy to answer. "Jack!" She yelled a second time. How was Allyson Alive? Last time she saw her was on the floor with a clear liquid running down the side of her mouth. Realizing her yelling was useless, she ran to help him pull back Allyson. She didn't know how but she became so strong, after all with both Kayla and Jack trying and failing, Allyson was pretty invincible.
"Don't get busy with helping me! I'm fine, go help someone else!" Jack said.
"How is she alive? When we left her she was dead!" She said.
"I don't know, but now she's stronger! Go to what I told you!" Kayla nodded, and off she went. In the midst of all the chaos, she thought she saw Mfumbe in the third row; but she did. She ran to him, hoping to break through this trance that everyone else was in. She knew she could, Kayla and Mfumbe loved each other, surely her face would snap him out of it. "Mfumbe, Mfumbe! Wake up!" This did absolutely nothing; Mfumbe was still stuck with his expressionless face.
"Mfumbe!" Kayla screamed in his face. Jets streamed up above, delivering a flaming liquid that would set everyone on fire. Kayla ducked and took cover on the ground, covering her head with her jacket which was set on fire as well. She dropped down and rolled in the sand frantically, snuffing out the flames as she did so. As she rolled, she could feel Mfumbe's feet kicking her in the side as he marched; she got up. "It's me!" She cried, shaking his arm as if to wake him from his trance. This was it, this was her vision! She glanced over his shoulder to see KM-6, Kendra, Kara and a few others she couldn't recognize because flames were cloaking their faces. How did they get here so fast? This was her vision exactly.
Kayla's attention went back to Mfumbe, who began to drag her along with him. "Mfumbe, what are you doing? Stop it!" She cried. Kayla craned her neck to a voice that was shrieking and crying for help; a voice she knew too well. "Amber! Amber where are you?" She looked around wildly for her, while trying to break free of Mfumbe's brute grip. "Kayla, over here!" Amber screamed. She looked over to where her voice was coming from; Amber was being carried over the shoulder of a large man with the biggest muscles she's ever seen. "Kayla! Help me, please! Kayla!" punching and kicking as hard as she could, had no effect on him what so ever.
Mfumbe began to grab her arms and throat from behind, choking her as he did so. They were only a mere four feet away from the water; where the others in front of them had marched to their end. How was she going to escape this one? She tried to break his grip on her throat, struggling and turning red. Mfumbe twirled her around to his face, so he could clasp her throat even harder; she faltered backwards into the icy cold water.
Mfumbe, don't do this. You have to remember, remember me, David Young, what you believe in, taking Gobal-1 down. Please remember me, we can't do this again; leave each other for dead. Fat tears fell from her eyes; Mfumbe's expression was still emotionless. 'Come live with me and be my love, and we will all the pleasures prove that valleys, groves, hills, and fields, woods or steepy mountain yields.' I love you.
She gingerly touched his motionless face, praying that it helped free him of this spell. Unfortunately, it worsened it. He began to walk faster into the water, and Kayla was now shoulder deep with Mfumbe's hand still clenched around her throat. Why couldn't she break the trance? Why wouldn't he stop trying to drown them both? That was it; all hope was lost. She gave up trying to break the trance, and continued to break his hold on her. If Mfumbe could speak his opinion, he would want her to get away from him and live for them both.
She and Mfumbe were now under the murky water; still walking, still choking. Kayla gave him a sharp jab in the jaw with her free hand and broke his grasp. She was able to get by him and reach back to the surface, starved for air. Until he turned around and snagged her from behind, his arms wrapped around her like a squid.
He continued to drag her downward until the surface seemed miles above their heads. He pushed her down to the bottom; her back pressed down against the sand, seaweed, and rocks. Kayla unrelentingly kept fighting for her life, as Mfumbe brought his face close to hers; noses barely touching. He kissed her with the smoothest of touch. No, he was sucking the air out of her! How could he do that to her, such a cruel thing? Mfumbe stopped and pulled away from her lips, breathing out the air he stole and letting the bubbles travel back up to the surface.
Kayla could restrain herself anymore, and she welcomed the cold water into her lungs; it burned. As her life began to fade away, the last thing she saw was Mfumbe drawing a sharp breath in; killing himself as he intended.
She died. So did everyone who was brainwashed, and not to mention everyone else who tried to pry them away from their goal. It was her fault, she didn't know why but it just was. Deep inside herself she knew that it was her fault entirely; no one else was to blame except herself.
Eutonah slowly opened her eyes, and fixated them on a young woman with brown hair, and the chunkiest boots she has ever seen; her boot made a crunching sound with the rocks under her feet. Eutonah arose from her seat. "I've felt you calling me, so I called you," she said. What she had just witnessed, was this girls' future path.