At fifteen I became a hero, in the attack on America when the Twin Towers. I had been flying to the East Docks where a Fossil Stadium was holding a Level 2 competition. I was coming in from the West, after flying from the Great Northwest to get to the competition, sleeping on the back of my Coatlus, the only flier that was a long distance flyer. The competition was going to be held at ten in the morning, so I had to be there by nine o'clock. The only issue is that that wasn't going to happen.
As a licensed flyer, I had a helmet on to help me breathe at high altitudes, but I was also aware of where planes were flying, and any talk coming from air traffic control. I was well aware of a hijacked plane that had been taking off from Boston, then there was two but no one was sure where they were going. I myself didn't think that they were coming to New York, nor would I believe that I would get buzzed by one. Never, not even as a fossil fighter, a fifteen year old fossil fighter, would I have thought that I would be involved in helping people out of the North Tower.
The engine was loud as I had been flying over rooftops, nearing the World Trade Center, and the Twin Towers. I turned my head to look at what was so loud only to urge Coatlus to dive when I saw a large American Airlines plane. I barely got us out of the way when the left engine of the plane buzzed my head, nearly taking my head off. In a split second, as I straightened out I watched in horror as that plane crashed into the first tower, the North Tower of the World Trade Center.
Instantly I got word out, via Fossil Message System or the FMS, that there was an emergency. Plane Crash in WTC, need help to get survivors.
As a flyer, I was in a flight suit, an all black number with high grade protection from fire and impact. I could hear through my helmet the chaos of the police and fire departments, they were scrambling to understand what was going on and I knew there was going to be a lot of confusion by the end of this day. I knew that I was the only one that was going to be able to help the survivors, if I was going to be the only one.
"FA Fighter, do not aid in the emergency." I heard the FA President Charlie Reece say in my ear of my helmet. "I repeat, do not aid in the emergency."
"Screw you, I'm helping." I ended the Transmission with the FA President and urged Coatlus. "Come on, we're helping these people."
What I told the President of the FA was repeated after that day. It's what ended his presidency with the FA. But I almost had my life end that day.
Only five of us came to the Towers, four of us came out. I was the first to arrive, soon after the first plane hit the North Tower and I knew there was going to be trouble. The plane hit near the 80th floor, meaning anyone above the impact zone was in danger of being trapped up there. I released Ptera soon after I landed on the roof of the North Tower, the one with the large lightning rod at the top. I had to cancel out the civilian radio and worry about the rescuers that were scrambling just to get to the North Tower.
"To anyone who can hear me," I said over the rescuers chatter. "I am FA Fighter Amaris and I am on top of the North Tower. I am going to fly people from the top to safety so focus on people below the impact zone." I was hoping someone would pick up my voice.
"We hear you," a Brooklyn accent said. "Try what you can. We're getting people out of the lower levels."
I saw people rushing out of the roof door, trying to get free from the smoke and debris filling the air. I was the lucky one, I had a helmet that was filtering air for me to breathe but they didn't. When these adults saw me, in this futuristic suit and flanked by two pterosaurs, they thought that I was going to kill them.
"Come on!" My voice rang out over the plumes of smoke. "Come this way. I'm getting you out of here. I'm going to help you! My name is Amaris, I am not going to hurt you."
They needed little prodding as I readied Ptera and Coatlus, telling the survivors two at a time and how to get on the vivosaurs. I pointed to two rooftops nearby, maybe two blocks away for Ptera and Coatlus to go to, to drop off the survivors. Not too far away so that it would take them long to get back.
"You're not coming?" One woman asked as I helped her on Coatlus.
"I'm going to find other survivors, those stuck above the impact zone. They know where to go, just hold on to them and each other and you'll be okay." I patted Coatlus' side and stepped back to let him fly off.
About fifteen minutes after the first plane hit the first tower, a second plane hit the second tower. It hit lower than on the North Tower, but there was more of an explosion that happened. I was getting another group, maybe four people, up to the roof, when I felt the jolt of the second plane hit the tower, I knew there was more going on than what anyone else knew.
"Go, just go. I'll be fine." I waved off Ptera and Coatus as they were readying another load of survivors.
I'm a level two fighter, I'm barely fifteen, how can I know what to do and how do I know what to say to a bunch of adults, who are supposed to be the ones protecting me? How can the tables be turned in this situation.
"Luca, I'm in the second tower." I heard a young voice come over my FA frequency.
"Help the fire fighters in there, use the visor like I taught you." I heard the famous Luca Grey, a level six fighter, who was about sixteen, a year older than me, say.
"Who's in the Second tower?" I asked wielding my pick ax on a stairwell door that was lodged stuck.
"My sister Annie, who's this?"
"I'm Level 2 Amaris, I sent the SOS and I've got my Ptera and Coatlus shuttling people to a safe zone."
"That's five, Isa and I are on our way." One of two Rune Sisters said. "What do you want us to do, Luca?"
"I'm helping the fire fighters get survivors down in the North Tower."
"Then we need someone for these jumpers. I think the roof is blocked on the South Tower. I haven't seen anyone roof top since the second plane hit." I opened the door with such force my voice was strained. "Come on, come this way. Up here, there are vivosaurs flying people from the tower."
I led a group of businessman, one of who was covered in blood, to the top of the tower, ten stories at least through the stairwell. Smoke was killing people slowly, I was safe with my helmet but the people in the tower were dying. I found people dead from the smoke. I opened one door to an office building that I had not checked in time to see a man jump from the window. There was another man in the window, waving a white flag.
"Go, I got these people, go up."
I actually had to pull people from the windows, urging them to go up, not down. The majority of the impact area was on fire and the fire was spreading. More smoke, more everything, more chaos, pandemonium, it was just insane and I was not sure if I was making a difference.
"Annie, you need to get out of there." I heard Luca say.
"I have a group with me in the west stairwell, I'm with firefighters going down." Annie's young voice could be heard.
That was the last thing I heard from her, because the second tower, the South Tower, fell. It collapsed, and she was ten stories from the lobby. I watched through the smoke on the North Tower as the South Tower fell. I couldn't breathe, even though I could breathe great. So this is what it feels like to loose your life.
I turned back to Ptera, who was next to me watching the catastrophe with me. "We have to go, Ptera. One more pass, then we need to go."
I ran down the stairwell, I actually got to the 80th floor opposite the side that had been hit. I saw her, she was huddled with an air mask over her face. This woman had a protruding stomach and it gave me the impression that she was pregnant. She was dying from the heat, I knew I couldn't leave her there.
"Come on," I said, taking her arm. "I'm getting you out of here."
She was the last one to go to the roof with me. I couldn't find any others in the mess of smoke and dust. Most were dead from the heat, this woman was a miracle. It took a while for her to go up the stairs, she was in distress and she was in what looked like labor. If she has that baby airborne I'm sure we'd loose a few more lives.
We got to the roof in time to see Ptera take off with another two people, there were ten people besides me and the woman. I'm holding her up when that rumble hit. It felt like an earthquake at first and then I realized that I was standing on top of the North Tower as it was collapsing. Here comes death. I held the pregnant woman tightly to me, she was growing weak, blood loss and such, trauma for another. I closed my eyes, not willing to see my death.
As the roof gave way below me, and I was free falling down with the building, something grabbed me by my shoulders. I felt intense pain, and that only made me hold onto the woman even tighter. Suddenly there was a sensation of turning, and the lunging feeling of Ptera flying off. I knew those jerky flying movements like the back of my hand. Ptera had grabbed me, by my shoulders and was flying off to the safe zone. I opened my eyes in time to see myself in a dust and smoke cloud, but I could see where I was going. The woman was looking too, her eyes opened wide as I wrapped my legs around her hips and tightened my hold around under her armpits, latching my fingers together.
I felt the jolt of Ptera letting me go and I landed with the woman on top of me, my leg hit hard first but I rolled over onto my back so that she didn't land on her stomach. There were rescue people helping my pterosaurs get survivors off of them so that they could fly back to the roof of the towers that were no longer there. A group of fire fighters took the woman by stretcher and I turned with Ptera and Coatlus to look at the remains of the towers.
"Hey, Amaris, can you hear me?" I heard Othala's voice come over my radio.
"Yeah, I can hear you." I said as Ptera and Coatlus went back into their medals. "We need to help the ones trapped in the rubble near the collapsed buildings."
"Have you heard from Luca?" Isa asked.
"No, not since the South Tower fell." I answered making my way down the building.
It was some time after the towers fell that the weight of everything that had happened seeped into my young mind. With Cera, my Tricera, at my side, we stood at the wreckage of the towers and the surrounding area. Othala and Isa approached me, a Yango and a Ankylo at their sides. I looked at the two sisters, a look crossed my face that was covered by my flight helmet. They couldn't see it but I'm sure they had the same face as I did. Complete loss.
There were news people, those brave enough to come back into the area after the towers had fallen. I stood with Cera looking at Isa and Ankylo, and Othala and Yango. There was nothing else we could possibly do. I had gone against the orders of the FA President and helped innocent people in a war that wasn't ours.
"I keep cancelling his calls." I said looking at Othala, knowing she would be able to retrieve his messages for later.
"Yeah, same here." She nodded, looking at Isa.
"I let his calls go to messages. I was too busy catching the Jumpers." Isa's cold demeanor was softening up now. "What more can we do? The people we've helped, those 911 calls have been yielding no response."
"What more can we do?" I asked, copying her earlier question. "There are no more 911 calls, from what I've heard of survivors trapped in the rubble. I wish I knew where Luca was."
Yango made a noise, a startled sound as he turned his head.
Walking out of the dust and ash, and other things I dare not consider, a lone figure came. I knew that silhouette anywhere, the tall lanky but still muscular build of Luca. I took maybe two steps towards the hometown hero of New York only to stop when I saw that he was carrying something, no someone. Flanking him on his sides were his Smilo and his V-Raptor, but a third vivosaur was with him. Hoplo wasn't his vivosaur, there was only reason why that small saber toothed cat would even be there.
Luca was carrying the body of Annie, his little sister. She had been in the South Tower aiding the firefighters when it fell. Here was the body of our fellow fossil fighter, so young and endearing in her pursuit of attaining Master Fighter status. She was one of the first of the other four to respond to my SOS, dragging her older brother Luca into the fray of mayhem. There she was, small as she was for a ten year old, laying in her brother's arms. This looked like a scene out of a war movie. We were living in a war now, now that we disobeyed direct orders.
As Luca and the cats, and the lone raptor passed us, between us, there was a silence even in the aftermath of the towers falling, there was a deeper silence. Firemen, police and others stopped and watched the tall boy carry the body of a young girl away from the chaos. This was why Reece didn't want me to interfere, I was risking my life for people I didn't know, becoming an unneeded hero. Then why, why did she have to agree to being a hero with me, an unwilling victim to a crime none of us committed? Now how was Luca going to tell his parents that their one daughter was dead because I asked for assistance?
Was there more going on that we didn't know about?