<In the abyssal stillness of space a portal opened and out of it erupted darkness. An ever-expanding, devouring vortex. Its hunger emerged like a new paradigm of the universe, unstoppable. Its soundless bellow made it even more unnerving as if already etched into our core. >
A metallic blur flashed across the busy street leaving a strong wind behind. Disoriented pedestrians cleared the way for the fast-approaching mechanically clad officer. The armored suit changed its direction towards the highway and glided past the traffic. This was a chase. This was a hunt.
"I located the target. I'm currently in pursuit" said a soft voice inside the mechanized armored soldier.
"Good job finding the terrorist, Ereya. Now turn on the Shared Vision Program so we can get a visual on him. We sent an alert to the ground police to evacuate your area so you'll be freer to execute your mission without being worried about the citizens".
"Thank you, commander. That makes things easier."
Ereya noticed the terrorist speeding up on his plasma-fueled motorcycle and she decided to accelerate as well by turning on the propellers on her back.
"As expected from someone sent by the leaders themselves, this guy is not to be underestimated." Ereya had to admit to herself.
Seeing that, the terrorist changed course towards the narrow streets, zig-zagging across them. They were neck-in-neck, leaving flashes of light from the sheer speed. The terrorist started shooting her with an electrolaser but she could read its trajectory using the neurolink with the mech suit and skillfully dodged each shot. They were approaching the limits of the city and after that was...the Aredaos Strait Bridge. The connection between the Alcedina Bay estuary and the Tirrus Sea.
"He's getting desperate... Which means he must have a strict time limit. He's approaching the Aredaos Bridge, I have a bad feeling about it, I have to stop him here !" Ereya thought to herself getting worried by the second.
"Commander Rayleigh, I request permission to engage in battle!"
The female soldier took out a sword from the back of the robot suit and swung it at the motorcyclist. The plasma from the sword attack melted the road and the driver flew out of his motorcycle, breaking its windshield. The terrorist started coughing up blood but when she was about to pick him up, he threw a blinding grenade at her. The burst of light disoriented her for a few seconds but she quickly regained composure. A few seconds was all the terrorist needed. He removed his helmet revealing a tiger face with a chewed-up left ear and a cut across his mouth. He then took off his mechanical gloves exposing paws with large claws.
"You're too late now officer, I'm within range of the Aredaos Bridge. This is the beginning of the Chimera Revolution, you disgusting Roeyan oppressors that like to pretend you're gods!" the chimera terrorist shouted while scanning his palm and activating the bomb. Ereya took out her gun and shot his hand, pulverizing it but it was too late.
In the distance, a huge explosion erupted near the bridge and a massive pressure was felt from the blast, it was so powerful that it pushed waves onto the shore. Ereya looked at the devastation in pure shock and dread. This was worse than death. It was a failure. Worse than any torture. Worse than when she was kidnapped as a child and had to learn to survive. Worse than the beatings from grandfather.
"No, I won't let them die!"
Her pride wouldn't let her accept defeat. In that moment, she made an oath to herself that no matter what, she'll rescue everyone. She'll not be seen as a failure, even if that meant sacrificing her life. She propelled herself like a bullet. The velocity was so fast she was flying onto the water, leaving behind huge water trails. She arrived at the bridge in mere seconds.
One Planet. 7 Houses. The 200-Year War. A ban on expanding and colonizing other planets based on religion and prophecy. The creation of chimeras, lab-made animal-human hybrids and their struggle for emancipation.
And a looming cosmic doom.
All that has to be solved by the soldier and princess Ereya of House Dorrean. Will she succeed or will a fate worse than death await her?
I will be posting this story on RoyalRoad.com as well: