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The War Has Begun
Rick Riordan inspired me.
I started noticing my powers when I was seven.
My step dad Travis had bought my mother flowers for their third anniversary. When I went to smell them they wilted over as if they hadn’t been watered in weeks. Travis had told me “Mason it’s ok it's not your fault.”
But when my mother tried to tell me the same it wasn’t convincing. There was a look in her eyes like she was holding something back.
Little things like that kept happening until I was about fourteen. when it got serious. A boy in my class started to tease me about how my father left. Eventually I couldn’t take it anymore and decided to get back at him. But what I did to him was unexplainable. I didn’t even mean to do it. I just walked up to him and suddenly it felt like a blanket of darkness overcame the room.
But just as fast as it came it left.
He collapsed face first into the floor. The teachers rushed to his aid and tried to help him up. They turned him over and all the color in his face was gone. It looked like he had just seen everyone he ever loved die.
The principal grabbed me by my collar and dragged me down to his office.He called my mom and asked her to come into school. When she arrived the principal took her outside and had a long talk. They came back in and told me about how I will not be allowed to return to this school again. I felt terrible. I just wanted to tell my mother how I didn’t mean to do what I did. My mom grabbed my shoulder and said “Alright Mason we need to go.”
During the car ride home she kept telling me she wasn’t mad at me and how much she loved me. When we got home she told me to go pack my bags because we were going to have to leave for a while and she would explain everything later.
Travis kept yelling at my mother saying things like “Cindy, I told you that you should have sent him away earlier,” and “He’s not safe here.”
I kept pestering my mom for answers but she told me that I need to wait until the car ride.. Once I was done packing she said I had to say bye to Travis because it wasn’t safe for him to follow us. This was horrible. Travis was the first boyfriend my mom had that actually cared about me and her. We just stared at eachother until he said “Buddy, I know this is hard for you. Everything is going to be fine, you just need to leave for a while.”
I went in to hug but as soon as our bodies touched he staggered back. The expression on hsi face was the same one from the boy at school. My mother grabbed me and told Travis “I’m sorry it's not his fault.”
And then we were off.
The first 30 minutes of the car ride were completely silent. Then my mom said “Mason I love you and you don’t deserve any of this.”
“Mom you're scaring me. Whats wrong?”
“Nothing's wrong honey. I just need to tell you something. Your father, he’s not who you think he is. He’s someone powerful, very powerful.”
“Like a President?” I said, looking at her worried face.
“No, more of a supernatural power.”
“Like a God?”
“Kind of. What I’m going to say is not going to make much sense, so just bear with me.
The best way to describe him is that he is death. He’s not dead he’s death. When everyone dies they become him. He has unexplainable power. He can make people feel immense sadness, anger, fear, he can make them visualize horrible things. That’s what happened yesterday when that boy collapsed. I know you didn’t mean for that to happen it just happened. You're father told me you would get powers and that when they start to become harmful to other people that you need to come meet him.”
“Is that where we are going?”
“Yes he lives in what he calls the Abyss. To get there we must go to where we first met, the graveyard where your grandmother was buried and wait for him and he will bring us. Mason I know you have a lot of questions but I am not the right person to ask. We will be with Father shortly.”
“Alright can I at least know his name?”
“That is a question I cannot quite answer. See since he is everyone who is dead he has many identities. I got to know him as Thomas Jones, a 32 year old car salesman who I eventually found out was murdered. He never revealed his true identity to me because he said it would have made me feel extreme sadness and fear.”
“When we get to the graveyard how will he know we are there?”
“I don’t know but he will know. Mason trust me you're father loves you. He had to leave because it would have been too dangerous for the people around you.”
“The powers I have, can I control them?”
“I’m not quite sure we just have to wait for your father. He said he will answer all your questions.”
“How come I don’t cause you fear?”
“I don’t you're father said I am one of few mortals who can be around him and you and not feel all the pain that normal people usually do.”
The rest of the car ride was silent. I kept thinking of all the possible people my father could be when we see him. Will he be a famous figure like Abe Lincoln or Nelson Mandela or will he be a random person like when he met my mother. I don’t know if I should be mad, happy, or scared to see him.
The car ride felt like forever. When we arrived my mother seemed even more nervous than me. I never thought about how she must be feeling. It must be weird going to meet someone so important yet distant in your life.
I got out of the car and followed my mother over to my grandmother's grave. This was the first time I had ever been here. I never really thought about my grandmother because I had never met her. My mother told me she was a beautiful, black haired, woman and that she would love me if she ever met me. We stood awkwardly by her grave not really knowing what to do. Then all of a sudden the temperature went cold and all the trees around started to shrivel as if they were scared. A cold wind blew. Then I saw him. He just appeared there, no magical entrance. He just emerged from thin air. He stood there. He had short scruffy black hair that flew around in the wind. He had a slight smile, but not a happy smile more a hey I know I have been gone for fourteen years of your life but it was for you're own good smile.
He was wearing a plain black shirt and tattered jeans. He was about 45 years old. For some reason I knew that the cause of this man’s death was cancer. He walked toward us. My heart raced I wasn’t sure if I should kneel. I looked at my mom. Her face was sad and loving. He walked up and gave my mom a hug. He looked down at me and said “Wow you have grown up fast.”
“Ya in fourteen years you do grow some.”
“No, since the last time I saw you, when you were ten.”
“You’ve met me before?”
“I checked in on you a few times but never wanted to talk to directly just to be safe.”
“Safe from what?”
“I’ll tell you everything later. Just not here.”
He and my mom talked for a while. It was really the first time in a while that I have seen my mom truly happy. When they were done talking my father asked “Are you ready?”
“Alright say bye to your mother and we can get going.”
“Wait, my mom isn’t coming?”
“No, although unlike other mortals she can be in my presence the Abyss is far too dangerous for her. I tried to bring her down there once and she couldn’t even handle the pain for ten minutes.”
“I don’t want to go without her. I can’t.”
“Honey, it’s gonna be alright you're father will take care of you. Trust me. Trust him,” My mother reassured me.
“Mom I can’t leave you!”
“It’s alright, it’s not me who they want, I’ll be fine.”
“Wait, what, who wants me?”
“Honey you gotta go.” She said as she nodded to my father.
I felt a his hand on my shoulder and instantly we appeared in the Abyss. It was not at all how I imagined it to look. It wasn’t a depressing, dead place. It looked like a vacation home in Florida. It was a huge white estate, on the beach with beautiful palm trees and a swimming pool and a basketball court. I was shocked. Once I was done taking in my amazing surroundings I turned to my father and stammered out, “What…How..Beautiful.”
“Not what you pictured?”
“Not at all.”
“That’s what I thought. I used to have the whole creepy vibe to it but it just wasn’t fun. I then turned it to a beautiful house in the middle of the Virgin Islands.”
He snapped his fingers and we were inside with a full meal of every type of food you could ask for. When I looked at him though he was a different person. He had long jet black hair. His eyes were straight black. His skin was straight white. On his head was a crown that looked like it was made out of people's souls. He was wearing a jacket that looked like it was made out thousands of tiny bones and his pants were straight gold. Then he spoke. His voice was a rough, raspy voice that sounded like he had been yelling for hours straight.
“Have whatever you want. Like whatever you want.”
“Uh….. thanks... Father.”
“Alright I suppose I should tell you what is going on.”
“Yes thank you.”
“Well before life, before anything my mother and father, had me, my sister, and my brother. We then settled on earth and divided it into three section, Life, Death, and Terrain. I got death, my sister got life and my brother got Terrain. Life went on for Billions of years. Then humans came around. We were glad we had another species. I was so fond of your species that I had child with one of them.”
“Did your sister and brother have any children?”
“Yes my sister has a 15 year old daughter, Alicia, and my brother has a 20 year old son, Matt. 200 million years ago our parents had another child. A daughter. Her name is Bella. There wasn’t enough room for her on Earth. She was not happy with us. She settled on an Earth thousands of light years away. On her earth she had children with many different species. She had been watching us without us knowing and found out that we too had children. She has been training an army of her children to come and kill you guys as payback for us not letting her settle with us. That’s why in ten days we are going to the mainland. At the mainland you will train for the battle against her army.”
“What’s the mainland?”
“Its terrains house. Both Life and I can be there without any harm so we decided to do it there.”
The next ten days I lived in the Abyss. It honestly wasn’t that bad besides the fact that I really missed my mother. On the tenth day I was feeling scared but excited to meet what my cousins.
My father snapped his fingers and we were standing in what looked like an exact replica of a Roman Temple. We were greeted by hundreds of animals. They all came over to check us out but crawled away in terror. Wherever we went the life in the land seemed to crawl away in terror. We walked up to the entrance and was greeted by Terrain. He looked like a 30 year old man dressed up in khaki shorts and a polo as if he was about to go golfing. He had short blonde hair with eyes as brown as dirt. To his right was his son. An almost exact replica but with brown and blue eyes. His voice made me want to get on a knee and do whatever he commanded.
“Good to see you brother. It’s been a while.”
“Yes it has I think 100 million years to be exact.”
Terrain looked over my shoulder and I felt a warmth glowing on my back. I turned around. Standing in front of me was the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. Long white hair reached down to her shoulders. Her skin was a dark tan. Her eyes were a light green and she wore a beautiful sun dress. By her side walked a girl that had the most comforting smile I’ve ever seen. They walked up beside and instantly I started imagining all the fun times with my mother. I looked at their face and you could tell we were affecting them to.
They all greeted each other and Terrain showed us our rooms and where we would be training. The training set-up he had was crazy. If I wasn’t training to fight for my life I would have been freaking out. It had weapons from now dating all the way back to the Greek and Roman times. It had fighting simulations and different fighting dummies. I was told I would be spending six hours a day here. But we wouldn’t just be learning how to use weapons. One of the most important lessons we had to learn was how to use our powers. My father told me about how I could use my powers to cause people great fear and sadness. Truthfully I didn’t think I was going to be using that all too much. But one thing that did interest me was I could summon armies from the dead.
The ground shook. I looked over and saw Matt standing in front of a huge ravine. Out of it flew a golden owl about the size of a school bus. Terrain said “This Matt, this is your pet. I created it just for you.”
It did a 360 then dive bombed right back into the ravine. As soon as the tail of the owl disappeared the ravine closed up.
“If you want to summon it just say Κουκουβάγια.”
The next few weeks we trained harder than you can imagine. I learned how to use my powers. I figured out how to summon crazy creatures and how to teleport. It would have been the coolest experience ever if I weren’t preparing to be attacked by hundreds of creatures with mysterious powers.
One day while I was fighting a robot dummy an explosion went off at Matt’s training quarters. We all rushed over to find a tiger looking thing about the size of a house dead with a jagged rock through its skull. Matt said panting “It just appeared out of thin air. It charged me from behind. If it weren’t for my powers I would have been dead.
“It must have been Bella. She must be close. We will be on high alert for the next few days. We will all stay together,” ordered Terrain.
The next two days nothing happened we all stayed together and didn’t train or anything. After dinner we were all going back to our beds when a huge rhino appeared in front of us. Then all around us hundreds of terrifying animals popped up. Then Bella rose up. She was wearing armor died a blood red. She was holding a flaming spear. Her face was painted golden. She yelled something that sounded like jibberish. All the animals around us roared and charged at us. Time began to slow down due to Matt’s powers. I summoned a huge vulture that picked off the whole front line of animals. Alicia made hundreds of trees sprout up and wrap around animals. Matt sent an earthquake through but it was impossible to beat them all. Suddenly I felt a searing heat on my back. I cried out in agony. I turned around to see a dragon like thing thrashing its tail at my. I ducked just in time but Matt didn’t see it and it sent him flying. Time sped up again and I got tackled by hundreds of creatures. I tried to teleport away but I was in to much pain. I thought I was going to die but then I remembered a power of mine. A blanket of darkness overcame all the chaos. All the creatures backed away in fear. Matt summoned his pet and it came out and together we destroyed the army.
I woke up to a spoonful of honey. I looked at who was feeding me. It was my mother. I tried to jump up to give her a hug but i felt a unbearable pain in my lower back.
“Stay down honey. You’ve got a bad burn. It will heal soon.”
“Mom I’m so glad to see you. Where’s dad?”
“He sent you back to me and he told me he has to leave again but he will be back.”
“Will I have to wait another fourteen years to see him again?”
“I don’t know honey. It’s for your own good though.”
Later that day my mom told me we were going somewhere special but I would have to wait to find out. On the car ride there I fell asleep. I woke up to a slight pat on the shoulder. I realized where we were. We were at Travis’s house. Travis came out and greeted me with a big hug. Unlike before he didn’t stagger back in fear. The reason for this was, love.