So, I have about two months to kill, and one of the couple of things on my bucket list is to write a book. Now, I'm not the greatest writer out there. However, there's been a plot that's been simmering in my mind for months, maybe even years, and I want to flesh it out.
I've always been a huge fan of the manga Freezing. However, it is quite on the "mature" side, but I always cannot help but think about how much better it would be if it was targeted towards teen audiences instead of the 17+ crowd. In my mind for years I've always envisioned living out a plot which, although it began in Freezing, eventually branched out and brought in a prologue, so many characters and people, that eventually I planned out a huge story that is about 3-5 years where the manga is currently at right now.
And so...here it is. I'm currently writing it out right now, and I've finished the first three parts, totally about 4,000 words, and I'm only at the beginning. Yeah, I know my writing isn't the greatest. My description is pretty bad, stunted by years of reading manga over books. Even though I completely revamped the names, adding a completely religious feel to it, and added a prologue, if you've ever read the manga Freezing, you'll probably know which characters are who. I promise the plot will differ the more and more I get into it.
Any constructive criticism is welcome. I also currently don't have a title, and any suggestions would be great.
January 1st, 2033
SpoilerAlex stared at the crimson red that blanketed his knees. Was that Courtney's hair-no, of course not, that was stupid. It was his blood that soaked through his legs. He wondered why he didn't feel any pain. Adrenaline, maybe?
"Courtney!" Alex shouted, his voice hoarse. "Where are you?" He realized that the lens to his glasses were cracked, but he made no effort to adjust his vision.
All of a sudden, a head flopped out right next to him. At first Alex exclaimed in joy, but then with a shout of terror he realized the head was decapitated. Jerking back from the sight only sent pain pulsing through his legs. Heart pounding, he realized it wasn't Courtney. It was her identical twin sister, Jennifer. It was hard to tell the difference sometimes, but, well pomegranate, he should know the difference between his wife and her sister, right?
Alex gazed elsewhere, eager to avoid the dead-blue eyes of the women so eerily similar to Courtney's. All around him, shattered glass was mixed with Alset Tech metal, ruined dreams piled onto the lattice of intertwined corpses. If only he didn't fire Lucy...
"Hey, stop thinking about that," a familiar voice grimaced. Alex didn't need to turn around to know it was Courtney.
"Yeah, you better not turn around. I'm kind of in a wreck. My makeup is all gone, my shoes are ruined, and, oh, I think one of my arms is missing. How are you doing?'
"Same as always, huh," Alex said. He turned his head around and gazed at her. Courtney was sheepishly grinning. One of her arms was clearly gone, but amazingly, it was bloodless.
"Lucky the Adam that tried to kill me used a high-energy particle beam. It burned my arm wound shut. It hurts, but hey, at least I'm not dead. Yet," Courtney remarked, displaying yet again her uncanny ability to read people's thoughts. Well, it wasn't really mind-reading, as much as it was her predicting what people's thoughts were. Her hobby the past four years was to predict, using observation, math, and a little bit of luck, the thoughts people had. It was slightly nerve-wracking to whoever met her, and half the time it was wrong, but Courtney mentioned she only needed three more years until she could perfect it. Well, that certainly wasn't going to happen now.
"Have you seen Eve anywhere?" Alex mentioned. He shifted his body to hide Jennifer's head. Even though Courtney sounded casual and good-humored, he knew that was her escape mechanism to cope with tragedy. Courtney flicked her eyes to where Alex shifted, but whether she saw her sister's head nor not, she chose not to mention it.
"No. I think she escaped. Hopefully, the Onus cells she has are still intact, though" and her face turned grim.
"I'm more worried about the Adams that might kill her," Alex mentioned offhandedly.
"Don't. You know as well as I do they're only programmed to kill members of Alset Tech. Like us," she chuckled.
Alset Tech. Alex let the thoughts flood his memory. Back in 2016, when he was still a scrawny, stereotypical, Asian teenager, he graduated from Princeton University, unsure of the steps he should take in the world. A mediocre pre-med student at best, his only redeeming quality was his work ethic. Party on Nassau street? Nope, gotta study. Family vacation in China? Nope, got an internship with Johnson and Johnson. Sex with Courtney? Nope...Alex has to uh...well, do something.
Courtney Hightower. A brilliant physics student, the best of the best even in Princeton. 24 credits a semester? No problem. Smart, pretty, and witty, Miss Hightower and her flaming red hair with her mischievous blue eyes was always the life of each party, and every Princeton male (and a couple of females) wished she was their math homework, so they could be doing her. Her only negative qualities was that she was a bit spoiled and a hopeless romantic. It was a huge surprise she got together with Alex Wang. There were plenty of rumors about the fact she was only dating him because she was sorry about his last name (both the name and the organ), but they both knew the truth.
Jennifer Hightower. Obviously, just as pretty as her identical twin sister, but because she was so annoyed at the amount of "twin" incidents, she decided to cut her long straight hair short. She was just as smart as Courtney, but chose to devote her time to the arts to distance herself as far as possible from her sister. Jennifer was a lot more down-to-earth than Courtney was, and people were very confused as to why Alex was dating Courtney, not Jennifer, as he had more similarities with Jennifer.
However, Alex saved Courtney's life.
After college, though, while Alex frantically sent his resumes to different pharmaceutical companies and applications to graduate school, Courtney said no to all of that, and dragged Alex by the ear and proclaimed that she wanted to continue the work of Nikola Tesla, and create a tower giving free wireless energy to the entire world.
But first they needed money. And that's when Courtney, while digging up all of her old contacts, managed to find someone that supported her idea. Lucy Für.
Personally, Alex never liked Lucy. If Courtney was spoiled by her stunning looks and great wit, Lucy was spoiled by the amount of money her family made. Daughter of a rich German robot-manufacturing CEO, the sole reason why she went to Princeton was because of several "generous" donations the Für family gave to Princeton. Expensive diamonds from her ears while her dyed white hair tied in luscious curls glistened in both sunlight and moonlight. She hung around Courtney and Jennifer a lot, obeying her parent's wishes to stay near the people she thinks will rise to the top.
And that was the beginning of the end, even though no one, not Alex, Courtney, nor Lucy, knew it.
While funding from Lucy's massive resources, Courtney managed to start a company, Alset Tech. After a year of the trio's joint efforts to obtain construction contracts, they actually managed to build a tower in Hawaii which, due to Courtney's ingenious brain, made the flow of electricity "wireless." No wires had to be used ever again. The aptly named Tesla Tower, reminiscent of both the Seattle Space Needle and the Eiffel Tower, somehow managed to pulse electricity through space.
Instantly, Courtney Hightower was on the cover of every magazine and newspaper article. A mere teenager, just one year after graduating college, creating such a device? It helped that Miss Hightower was immaculate during interviews, able to make reporters laugh over every sentence she made.
Lucy Für also enjoyed the new fame. When asked about her reasoning to fund the project, she replied with glee, "I always had the deepest trust in Jenn-I meant, Courtney Hightower, and I have no doubt that she will manage to repay me back one day."
Alex lurked in the shadows, distrustful of Lucy, and he was never really that handsome so the media stayed away from him. He also didn't contribute much to the beginning of Alset Tech, besides a few odd errands and Google searches. He was proud Courtney created the Tesla tower, but he felt...useless. That is, until Courtney made him head of Human Resources.
Alex was ruthless as the head of H.R. Courtney had long admonished Alex's decision to pursue the track of pre-med instead of majoring in psychology. He usually simply replies "There's a lot more jobs." Alex had a deep passion for the art of the mind, but family pressures pushed him towards pre-med. However, as the H.R. head of a rapidly expanding company...every hopeful job applicant had to eventually pass his personal final interview. From questions such as "Have you ever thought of banging Courtney Hightower?" to "What do you think of my last name?" he confused numerous hopeful employees. However...no one could deny Alex was amazing. From perfecting carbon nanotubes to make the strongest material on Earth to machines that transported clothes onto individuals, all of the people in Alset Tech contributed to make the company the number one most valuable corporation in the world.
Well...all except one. Lucy. It has been long since Courtney paid her $30 million debt, but Lucy insisted on being the Executive Vice President, otherwise she'd do...well, something. Alex longed since yearned to fire her, but Courtney let her stay, shrugging "What could she possibly do? And besides, she helped us with the Tesla Tower."
Despite all of these technological advancements, all of that pales in comparison to the project Courtney Hightower personally worked on, the portal device.
"Stealing" the idea from a video game, after several years of hard work and a baby named Seth, Courtney and her team created a machine that could create two "portals." Going in through one portal would enable one to exit through another portal. Testing this device was atrocious, however. An entire ship nicknamed the S.S. Grail completely vanished somewhere in the Arctic to the great dismay of Courtney and Alset Tech. It was during here that the seeds of hesitation were implanted during several members of the company, no doubt helped propagated by Lucy in Alex's eyes.
The final product had enabled man to instantly travel from location to another. Aside from instant movement from China to the USA, lunar colonies started being established for the first time, and plans to populate Mars were underway. The "Golden Age" of man lasted for about ten years...and it all came crashing down on December 21st, 2032.
And now, in the depths of Alset's biggest lab, Alex stared at Courtney, his eyes forlorn. An "Alset Tech" logo, a simple picture of the Tesla Tower, laid dirty on a piece of Alset metal nearby. It still seemed preposterous to Alex that the Adams managed to even dent the carbon nanotube material. How could they possible manage to do that? What concoction had the Für family manage to create almost three weeks ago?
He was going to die here with Courtney at the ripe old age of 36. There was no avoiding that fact. When Alset Tech was at its prime, immortality was a possibility. With wireless electricity and instant transportation, Alset Tech seemed able to accomplish the impossible. But now, he wouldn't be able to stay by Courtney's side forever...
Alex clutched Courtney's hand. "It's over, isn't it?" he whispered. The Adams made it their objective to systematically eliminate all employees and technologies of Altec Tech. Once they were done with that...who knew what they would do.
"Over for us, perhaps...I hope Eve will be able to find a government willing to cooperate...and I hope Seth is safe." As she said that, a mournful sound, like opera, hummed through the air.
"Ah," Courtney groaned. "They found us. I was really hoping the power of our love would keep them away, just like in the movies."
"You know...I've always hated those chick-flicks you made me watch."
Chuckling softly, Courtney's face softened. "I love you, Alex."
"I love you too, Courtney," Alex replied, his hand tightening over hers.
The last sight Alex saw was her face, and his last thought was that her face was just as pretty as the one he saw 20 years ago in the airplane.
Chapter 1: Hope
August 29th, 3009, 76 years later
Spoiler"It might have been a good thing that the Adams appeared in 2032," Professor Himura lectured, to the collective gasps of the students. He sighed.
"I don't know. But there was no denying the fact the Earth was becoming overpopulated. In 2032, the human population hit 10 billion, surpassing previous United Nations and World Health Organization estimates. Fresh water was being consumed at an alarming rate. Oil deposits were at an all time low and in danger of depleting. Drastic actions had to be enforced unless...yes? Naoko?" the Professor sighed, calling on a student.
"B-but Professor..." piped Naoko. Compared to Professor Himura, who was an old, grey-haired, and a rather imposing old man, Naoko was a short, small, and rather cute Japanese girl. Not surprisingly, Himura often sighed at Naoko's constant questions.
"U-u-uh...didn't Alset Tech create a cheap water purification technique? And didn't they also have that wireless tower thingy, so we wouldn't need oil? Oh and oh, and couldn't we travel to the moon to uh...populate it since Earth was getting crowded?"
Professor Himura groaned. "Naoko...have you been listening to any of last week's lectures, or at least...read a book your entire life?"
"U-u-u-uhh...I just wanted to ask, you know, just in case there was anyone here who doesn't know." The collective high school freshman class groaned.
The room was very modern, even for 2086 standards. All of the tables and chairs were made of a sort of smooth glass, giving the impression one was floating in the room. The walls were a straight, unyielding material, partially made of the white Alset Tech metal. Projections of the neoPowerPoint presentation were floating in midair next to Professor Himura, who was dressed in a crisp white suit complete with a white tie. Throughout the room various high-school freshman were dressed in white or black uniforms and many struggled through yet another boring history class. Unfortunately, none of them could fall asleep, as the desks were rigged to suddenly collapse if it detects 5 kg applied for exactly thirty seconds.
"I can't believe this girl is number one in her year..." Professor Himura muttered. He sighed yet again. "Alset Tech is finished. The Adams destroyed the company long ago, and obliterated most of the technology in the company. The only thing we have left are the machines that put your uniforms on you, the Language Pills that enables one to learn English in a night, some of the metal which is pretty much now useless, and obviously...the Onus technology. There may be more lurking deep in the labs, perhaps a portal device or two, but I believe not. The Adams are thorough."
"Now, back to the lecture," he continued. He gazed around at the classroom through his spectacles. None of them could probably last much longer, except for maybe Naoko. He would have to propose to the Doctor later to shift his classes later in the morning. Again.
"Looking on the bright side, despite all the technology we lost, overpopulation is solved." His voice dropped. "Since the Adams murdered a staggering five billion people." Everyone in the room tried to look solemn. They really did. But Professor Himura knew better. Five billion people was just a number, a statistic.
"Peter Johnson!" the professor barked. "What was the prior event which had the most deaths?"
"Uh...World War II, sir?" squeaked a scared voice in the last row quickly.
Himura scowled. "No, no, it's obviously the Taiping Rebellion in the 1850s...or maybe the European colonization of the Americas. But even then...the top 30 events combined isn't enough to outnumber the death toll caused by the Adams. In Earth's billion of years of history, roughly 100 billion Homo sapiens lived and died. The Adams contributed to 5% of that number. That was half of the world' population."
There was a hushed silence in the room, or Professor Himura would like to think. The Diatriba had to hire the best of the best to teach at the school, and the Professor considered himself among those elite. Unfortunately for him, the hushed silence was more of an almost-dead asleep silence.
The bell suddenly a rang, a piercing shrill that jerked many of the students away. In the rush towards the door, Professor Himura was frantically yelling "Remember, the homework is to read the first half of Quinn's Ishmael!" In the commotion that ensued, no one really noticed the large black figure that almost glided into the classroom. It was obvious he was of African descent, and the pitch-black suit he wore only gave the impression he would be invisible during the night. However, his head was white, not because of age, but because it was dyed.
"Pleased to meet you, Doctor," Professor Himura panted. "May I ask you to push the history class to later in the morning again?"
The old man chuckled, a laugh reminiscent of the famous Morgan Freeman almost a century earlier.
"There will be a new student today," the Doctor said, his voice articulate and smooth. "Well, I suppose he is not exactly new. He just had to visit several cemeteries which had extraordinarily high security. His name is Raphael Engel."
Himura nodded. It wasn't exactly too unusual for students to arrive a week late in the semester, as the first week was mostly for the chance for students to orient themselves to the place they'll be staying for most of the next four years. After some realization, Himura jolted, "Is he related to-"
"Yes." The Doctor interrupted. "I expect you to treat him the same as any other student." His white hair shimmered in the artificial light.
"Understood." After a moment of awkward silence, Himura asked, "Is he an Abel...or a Cain?"
The Doctor tilted his head. Outside, the sun shone brightly onto the well-kept Diatriba campus. It was a beautiful day, typical summer weather for the artificial island off the coast of northern Japan. The massive buildings outside, all made of Alset metal, were eerily unmoving in any earthquakes the region may have. However, time and time would prove again that they would prove useless against an Adam attack.
"He is an Abel...but he has the mark of Cain."
Chapter 3: All
August 29th, 3009
Spoiler"Hello! And welcome to the North Diatriba of Japan!" exclaimed the rather cheerful voice. Raphael took another look at Mary Hightower, apparently the Student Council president of the juniors. She had short brown hair, quite similar to the Black Widow in Avengers 7. Her school uniform was a sort of moonlight gray jumper dress over a black blouse, the Diatriba logo etched proudly on both of her shoulders. Her stocking were long and white, and Raphael could (unintentionally, of course) see there were was a sort of white khakis under the jumper dress. Surprisingly, her feet were covered with a pair of regular sneakers-the ultrathin version, obviously. However, the most unnerving part of Mary Hightower was the constant smile she kept on her face. Oh, and perhaps the fact her eyes were always shut.
"Uh...Mary...nee-san..?" Raphael started.
"Oh no, you don't need to call me that!" Mary cheerfully scolded. "Even though this is Japan, don't worry about honorifics or whatever. Diatriba is an international school. I am from Canada, you know?"
Raphael blinked. "Okay," he replied hastily and blushed, instinctively moving his right hand behind his head and scratching his head. God. Why did this have to happen now? Every single time.
"Mary...are you related to Courtney Hightower by any chance?"
Mary giggled. "Uwah...no, of course not Raphael. My dad's a priest and just wanted to change his boring old name from Lee to something grand, like Hightower. Oh, and by the way, here's the way to the Headmaster's office. We call him the Doctor, although I'm not exactly too sure why, but he's very smart! You have my number, right? Call me later if you need any help!" Mary waved, walking away. Raphael Engel looked at the digital map his phone just received, nodded, and started making his way to the Doctor's office, whoever he was.
As he started walking down to the headmaster's office, Raphael suddenly became aware he was quite the center of attention of quite a lot of students. His casual attire totally did not fit in with the black or white student uniforms everyone else wore.
Raphael, admittedly, knew he was quite handsome, but he tried not to show it. When he was a toddles, time and time again he had been coddled by his parents and grandparents about what a pretty little boy he was. His family was quite rich, he wasn't going to lie, but he felt that led him to have a very protected childhood. He felt unsure of how to handle things in the real world. Well, that sure changed quickly, though.
As he strolled his way, girls giggled in groups about his very blond hair and bright blue eyes, while several of the jealous guys muttered "German." He internally jerked at the offense, but did not pursue the matter. World War II was over a century ago. What mattered now were the Adams...though in a way, he supposed it was his fault that happened, too.
When Raphael arrived at the Administration Office, he suddenly realized he didn't have access to the building The vapor at the entrance solidified every time he got near.
"Did you want to get in?" a voice piped behind him. He turned around and saw a small Japanese girl.
"My name Naoko Takahashi. You were the new student uh...Raphael, right?"
Raphael nodded, and instinctively, he put his right hand behind his head and blushed. Not again. "Ah yes...I'm Raphael Engel" and proffered his left hand to a confused Naoko.
"Well...okay. Did Mary send you the APP to your phone?" she continued.
"The APP?" he replied, confused.
"Ah...it's Diatriba's universal program. It stands for something, I'm not sure what, but it contains a map and a key and such."
Raising his eyebrows, Raphael held his phone, the newest iPhone 158, to a black access panel, and the mist suddenly vanished.
"I'll see you around Raphael!" Naoko called out, and she walked away. "Huh...these foreigners are all so weird..." she thought.
As Raphael was just about to knock onto the Doctor's office, a deep voice boomed "Enter." He strode in, and his eyes slightly widened in recognition of the familiar dark figure.
"She was at my sister's funeral..." he thought. His hands slightly clenched as he recalled the occasion.
The Doctor pointed towards a nearby Alset Clothing Manager, or ACM, that loomed near them. "Your school uniform should be inside. Use your APP to access your account." Raphael hesitated. He much preferred to put on his clothes manually, as he disliked using Alset technologies. However, he could tell this was not the time to tell the Doctor that. He entered the man-size machine and swallowed as he held up his phone to the access panel on the inside. The ACM closed with a familiar bang.
Instantly, red lights and lasers began scanning his body. He closed his eyes, and suddenly a robotic female voice said "Please take off your outer clothing." Groaning, he stripped to his undergarments, and the red lights and lasers began scanning him once more.
"You must restore honor back to this family, do you understand me?" a hoarse voice spat at him. Recoiling Raphael jerked in the machine, and suddenly he tumbled out.
Disapproving, the Doctor said "It would be better for you to wait until the ACM actually ejects you out, because there's no telling if it solidified your clothes. However, in your case, it seems like it did.
Raphael looked down. He was in quite a white suit which almost blended perfectly with his skin. He was wearing a tie, but strangely, the entire outfit felt oddly comfortable, as if he could move round easily. In fact, he felt it would be just as easy to run in this uniform compared to some yoga pants and t-shirt.
"So this is what the most powerful military organization in the world can afford" he thought with wonder. He gazed up towards the Doctor, whose black uniform and black skin completely contrasted with Raphael's own.
"As I'm sure you most likely aware..." he began in his deep voice. "You are one of the lucky few to be Harmonious with the Onus cells. I'm sure you're also aware that you are an Abel."
"Find a Cain to partner up with before the end of month. Like me, they will be wearing black. Un-partnered ones can be looked up on your APP."
He grimaced. "Welcome to the North Diatriba of Japan. The military organization Alsonus is going to need all the help it can get to help defeat the Adams."