(Disclaimer: I don't own Lorien Legacies series or any of these characters, blah blah blah. Someone does though…I think it's that Pittacus Lore guy. I don't know.)
The rest of the day is filled with the usual exercises to hone our Legacies, and more combat trials concerning the Games. Today we mainly focused on how to fight another Loric, but Brandon said we'll learn combat tactics against a human or Mogadorian latter in the week. Regardless, it's a long day, and I'm totally wiped when I finally reach home and crawl into my bed.
But no peaceful sleep comes to me tonight, and I once again dream of the man. He's standing inside the mouth of a dark cave, watching the embers of a slowly dying fire, his arms crossed against his massive chest. His eyes flicker up to me as I suddenly appear, then resume staring back down at the flames. I look around, and then take a step back in shock: I know this place. It's where Nine and I spent our first night out in the wilderness during Lupa's exercise. I even recognize the same little bed of leaves and moss I'd collected to sleep on pushed back into the far corner. I turn back to the man and find him staring at me intently.
"I'm sorry." He says, his voice rumbling in the dead of the night.
"What?" I ask, confused. This wasn't at all what I was expecting.
His eyes shift back down to the fire, "I won't be able to reach you in time. You'll have to save yourself."
"What do you mean?" I ask, panicked even though I don't know what I'm supposed to be saving myself from, "You're only a week away."
He laughs, "Oh, I wish, kid. I wish. You're not that bright, are you?"
"What?" I ask, slightly hurt.
He turns toward me, "Kid, it took you a week with super-speed. All I've got is my own two feet. Plus, you don't have to hide from three whole planets sending bounty hunters after you. Things like this tend to slow you down."
"Oh." I say, deflating.
"And even if I did make it to the Observatory, it'd still take me at least a month to reach you. I can't just teleport to London, like you did with that witch, Lupa."
"What's wrong with Lupa?" I ask, desperate to know who my enemies are.
"You can't trust her. You can't trust anyone." He growls. His face takes on a dark look and whispers so softly that I could barely hear him, "You can't trust anyone."
"Then what am I supposed to do?" I practically scream, frustrated by the entire situation.
"Learn. Develop your last Legacy, and then develop His."
"You know what my last Legacy is?" I ask, shocked.
He grimly smiles, "Oh yeah. And trust me, it's a killer."
"Who are you?" I ask. I need to understand what's going on here.
"It doesn't matter." He growls, all traces of his wry amusement gone, "We've already met. What matters is that you get the hell away from London right now. If you don't take the path, then all three of our worlds have no hope. Pack light, and tell no one where you're headed. Make your way to the Observatory, and I'll try to meet you along the way."
"What?!" I sputter, "You can't just expect me to leave out of the blue, running away from something I don't even know!"
He shakes his head, and the vision starts to go black, "You don't want to. I'm sorry, but it's the only way. We have no choice."
Then just as everything disappears completely, I hear one last whisper, "Luck be with you, Number Four."
I bolt up upright in my bed, my sheets streaked from sweat and thrown aside from my tossing and turning. I'm breathing heavily, my heart racing off pure adrenaline. I grimace in frustration and rake my hands through my disheveled hair. I stay that way for a while, simply agonizing over what the hell I'm supposed to do, when I finally get out of bed and pull on a sweatshirt and pair of jeans. I slowly walk out of the house, careful not to wake my grandparents. My feet are cold against the bracket and twigs strewn about the ground as I delve into the forest. It takes me a couple minutes, but I eventually reach a favorite thinking spot of mine, a high rock jutting out among the wood, with a clear view for miles. I shiver and pull my hood up, trying to keep warm in the pre-dawn night.
I sit silently, pondering over my situation. I don't even understand what's going on. Why would I individually be the only one who's in danger? The only sign that anything's wrong has come from my dreams, which could be just figments of my imagination, the ramblings of a crazy man. But there's something deep inside of me, almost a sixth sense, that tells me that everything I'm agonizing over is all too real. My body slowly starts to shake, struggling to release the pent-up anger coursing through my veins. I'm tired of being kept in the dark: I want to know what's going on. I've been plagued by these omens and thoughts for the past two weeks, and I'm sick of it.
Far-off in the distance there is the sound of rumbling thunder, and I notice dark clouds brewing overhead in the dim light from one of Lorien's rising suns. I sigh and stand, my muscles sore and creaking in protest from the cold and hours of disuse. I must have been sitting up here longer than I thought. I scoop a small stone up from the rocky ground and hurl deep out into the forest with my mind as hard as I can. I watch it arc through the air and then dip to the ground, then turn away and start heading home. I'm careful when I'm back inside, but my grandmother is already awake, silently reading by our fireplace. She looks up as I come in, and asks me where I've been, but I simply tell her that I needed to take a walk.
The rest of the day is painstakingly normal, and I'm desperate for some sign that I'm not crazy, that my fears might be real. It doesn't help that I don't even know what I'm looking for, and it only descends me further into silent madness. I've already decided not to leave London, but I'm going to stay vigilant, alert for any sign of this threat. The classes at the Lecture Hall are basically the same, and we learn more about how to defend against an enemy Garde's telekinesis, along with more of the history of the Games. This time I'm paired with Five for warm-ups, and I beat her easily. She might be difficult for the others, but her super-strength is no use if she can't even land a blow on me, thanks to my speed. Brandon and Conrad give us a brief introduction to something interesting, telling us that we'll be opening our Chests tomorrow. I've seen everything inside, but I still don't know what a good amount of my Inheritance actually does.
They let us out early today, and we all decide to go down to the Launch Systems to watch the humans and Mogadorians arrive. There's a crowd, but we manage to push our way to a good vantage spot that gives a clear view of the landing pad. I'm curious; I've of course seen these aliens in pictures, and both have respective ambassadors here in London, but I've never seen that many together in person. The only references I have are the media they've sent us and my lessons from Brandon. While the humans have their ambassador Malcolm Goode here in London, and I've even had maybe one conversation with his son Sam, who's totally obsessed with our Legacies, I've never really seen them interact with their own species. Sam's a nice enough kid, although definitely odd. I can only imagine how diverse the rest of his race will be.
And then, even more reclusive, are the Mogadorians. I've heard rumors that they're race is slowly dying out, though I'm not sure if that's true. I know they're unified under one leader, Setrakus Ra, unlike the humans, who assigned a single ambassador to our planet. He only goes by the General, and I've never talked to him. He had a son, Adamus, and a daughter, Kelly, but they were sent back to Mogadore when they were ten years old. I'd never known Kelly, and had only talked to Adamus a few times, so they were as much of a mystery to me as the humans.
Nine impatiently cranes his head up to the sky, looking for their ship, "When are they gonna get here already?"
Marina frowns, "We've been waiting for like, five minutes, and you're already impatient."
"Try being me," I joke, "you guys' minutes seem like hours to me with my Legacy."
"Oh," Six smiles at me mockingly, "So how do you explain how you're always the last one to anything?"
I mime a long yawn, adopting a sleepy expression on my face, "I take my time. I have enough of it anyways."
"More like he can't read a clock." Eight snickers and Nine joins in.
Five rolls her eyes, "Oh, please. None of you guys can read a clock. Every single day you all come in late, dirty and sweating."
Nine takes on an expression of mock indignity, "Oh, so we're being sexist now."
One smiles and throws her arms around Six and Ella, "Please, this isn't even an argument. Everyone knows any of us girls could kick any one of you guys' ass."
"Not what I heard the other day when you went up against Four." Nine shoots back.
One smirks, "I think I proved my point when I held you in a headlock until you begged me to let you go this morning, Nine."
Maggie lets out an excited gasp and points up at the sky, interrupting Nine's response, "Oooh! Look! I can see the ship!"
We all hurriedly peer into the sky, but none of us can see them without Maggie's Legacy, which grants her practically an eagle's eye. If I squint hard enough I can see something that looks a little brighter than the rest, slowly rocketing towards us. It could be the ship, or just one of the many comets that whiz by Lorien nearly every night.
"I don't see anything." Nine frowns
Eight looks over at him, "Dude. Two, oh wait, sorry, Maggie. I'm still kinda getting used to this. Maggie can see for miles. If she sees them, then they're here."
Sure enough, just as Eight finishes talking, I can make it the ship streaming towards us, streaming fire in its wake. Not a comet after all.
Marina nods, "Look. You can see it now. That dot near the sun, right next to it."
"Which sun?" Nine grumbles.
"The one in front of us, dumbass." One rolls her eyes.
A small flush creeps into Nine's cheeks and he looks up at the sky, abashed. If it had been anyone but One he'd probably have shot back a rain of insults back at her, but she has his heart in her hand. I don't think she's interested in it, though. Which is only another testament to Nine's stupidity, as Five has been shooting for him practically ever since they met. I shake my head. Dude, open your eyes, I think.
That's not gonna happen anytime soon, a small voice projects into my head.
I turn to see Ella beaming up at me, and flash her a smile, Now that, is a very good prediction.
Her smile widens at we both turn to look back up at the rapidly descending ship. I briefly wonder if Ella's telepathy lets her talk to animals like mine does as we wait. It'd be interesting to find out, something to test when we have time.
A loud roar reaches my ears, and I can't even hear myself when I gasp in shock. A massive hulk of metal looms above me in the sky, spewing fire from its tail. It's huge, the size of shopping mall, with who knows how many stories. It must have taken years to build. I can see the flag of Earth and talisman of Mogadore inscribed on the sides. Also detailed along both flanks of the ship is the Triumvirate, the symbol of the three-way alliance between Earth, Lorien and Mogadore. The behemoth slowly sinks to the earth, and when it lands it lets out a quake that feels like One's let loose with all of her power. The monster sits till for a second, and then a hatch opens at the bottom, revealing a parade of humans and Mogadorians streaming side by side together onto Lorien.
The walk forward together, heads held high amid the cheers of the Loric. They're impressive, but I can't help but view them as my enemies. If Six and I do qualify, then many of these people will be my competition. I watch them come forward, a seemingly endless wave of them. Malcolm Goode and his family along with the General stand at attention, ambassadors to their respective races, welcoming their to people to Lorien. I see Malcolm shaking hands with a woman who must be Annie Hart. I know that she was the first human to discover our race, and has been a leading scientist and figurehead ever since. I can't help but notice a pretty girl with blond hair who must be around my age, who must be her daughter, but my attention is captivated by the Elders appearing.
They literally pop out of thin air, probably thanks to Lupa's power. Or Pittacus Lore, who has every Legacy. I try to imagine what it would be like to have that much power, but I can't even begin to fathom it. He must unstoppable, with all that power and wisdom. Even now he's the most imposing figure here, and his very presence escalates the Loric's cheers. He manages to appear both powerful and kind, a true leader. Even here his aura of power, along with the rest of the Ten Elders', makes me want to fall to my knees.
But then my head my head is turned by a different force, one that I've only felt in my darkest thoughts. Everyone else, the entire crowd along with Six and the others, is captivated by the Elders, and I alone am drawn back to the ship's entrance. It's almost in a dream. And something finally clicks into place. The man coming off the ship is one I have seen before, though never in person. For an instant I'm certain that he is the same as the man from my dream, and I'm almost certain they're one and the same until I start to notice the slight differences. But now something is finally clear to me, and I at last have an enemy I can see. And this man is my enemy, that I am deadly certain of. Descending onto Lorien is a monster and now I know its name: Setrakus Ra.
A/N And…Four's life officially sucks. Poor guy, huh? Next week is a Fallen Legacies update, so there won't be anything on this end. I also may or may not take a week off: I seriously need some time to get ahead both on my homework and this story. Anyways, as always, Please Review!