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Shadows Chapter 11

The Planet Earth, a beacon of light in what is otherwise a cold and dark universe. Recently this light had been flickering and would soon die. Each and every human being on the planet was held under the ever present and ever tight grip of the established world order. For as long as they existed in this dimension every person would be designated as a slave to the state. There were a few lucky ones, exceptions to the rule, those who held postions of power. They would eventually be corrupted to a level which matched those at the helm of the organisation.
Piccolo knew all of this. Yet he could do nothing. It pained him to see people...his people having to endure so much suffering. With every thought of this suffering, intense anger and frustration filled his entire being. Yet he could not give in to such emotions. Doing so would get him killed. Like the others. He cast his mind away from such disturbing matters and started to meditate, floating slightly off the ground with his eyes closed and legs and arms crossed.
During the last 17 years, the world had changed dramatically. After the fight...that fight...Dr Gero declared himself Lord Gero and started to build up the massive infrastructure of the EWO. In the second year of his rule, all forms of mass entertainment, including drinking, gambling and most television channels had been declared illegal. Such activities were declared an unnecessary distraction. The truth was that the regime enjoyed human suffering. It was on the fourth year that the human race was divided into two groups. According to genetic scanning those of inferior genes would be assigned for slave labour. The relatively few who had stronger characteristics would be given minor positions of power. Thus it would be the case that most people would be slaves from birth.
In the tenth year, this policy was abandoned. With a few exceptions, all humans were now slaves. Thousands of mass produced artificially created androids would check that mankind was ultimatly controlled by the state. This system was far more effective as androids could be uniquely programmed to suit their task and were not prone to the weaknesses that were human emotions.
The world was hell on Earth, cast under the ever present shadow of Lord Gero.
Piccolo concentrated on his meditations. He relaxed himself and cleared all thoughts from his mind. Darkness. He felt darkness. But he had felt that each and every time for the past 15 years. He saw people working on fields, ploughing them. An android looking on. He noticed someone fall to the ground. His supervisor hit him. Three times. Hard. Yelling in pain, tears streaming down his eyes, he dragged himself back up and continued working. This was evil. Ultimatly evil. There was no other word for it. Piccolo was shrouded by darkness once more as he began to see something different...
He was looking inside a building. Voices. A face. He knew it - it was Alec's. There was intense fear in his eyes. One thump. Two thumps. Three thumps, the door crashed open. Androids powered in. Dozens of them. Incredibly strong...
Piccolo abruptedly brought himself back to full consciousness. They were going to die. All of them.
Ferefire wanted to go to sleep. He couldn't. He wasn't that weak. He would die if he did. Its all Alker's fault, he reflected bitterly. The very reason why the androids had been searching and had eventually found them had been due to that kid. Currently Alker and Jake were carrying Ferefire, trying to escape. Ferefire did not have a clue if they would succeed. He did not really care anymore. Alec and Hannah had been lost to him. They would probably be killed soon, when interrogations had finished.
Suddenly the entire building shook violently.
"What was that?", Alker yelled in panic.
"NO! They're trying to blast us out!", Jake yelled over the noise, "we must hurry"
Jake and Alker raced towards the exit, only to find...
"****!", Jake could not believe it. The entire subway and ventilation system had collasped. Rubble crowded what had been their entrance.
"We're dead! We're so dead!", Alker stated miserably, all hope now lost from his soul.
"Listen boy!", Ferefire exclaimed, "if you start believing that, you WILL be dead. Snap out of it!"
"They're coming again!", Jake almost yelled, "There's nowhere to hide now..."
Four androids rounded the corner and froze. Motionless, they took half a second to analysis their opponents. Eventually one coldly ordered, "Two targets. Maximium risk. Eliminate. Other target capture"
"Elites", Jake whispered in horror. He assumed his fighting stance. He was not going to die quite yet.
The four androids attacked Jake and Alker simultaneously. Jake mananged to block the first couple of blows that came his way, but it was hopeless. His second attacker soon broke through his meagre defences and almost punched a hole through his stomach. Jake gasped out in pain. He could not give up. He just couldn't. He attempted to throw a punch at one of the androids. It was blocked and with a swift counterattack, Jake received a blow to his face. Coughing up blood he slumped against the wall.
Alker only just had enough time to dodge the first couple of attacks that came his way. There was little hope, but he did not want to die. Not now, or like this. He tried to retailiate, but it was all he could do to hold off the shots. His energy was getting depleted now, he knew that he could not keep this up for much longer. Turning his head he saw that Jake was in an even worse condition than he was. Battered and bruised, he was being pummelled by one of the androids. The other had broken away to deal with Ferefire. As if that was necessary. He was going to die. They were all going to die. He felt an immense jolt of pain as the punches started to get through. He staggered, trying to remain upright. The android dealt him a blow to the face and broke his nose. With a split lip and blood gushing everywhere, darkness descended. No...
Ferefire winched in agony as the android dealt him another blow. He was no longer experiencing pain of any sort. He was past that, literally only being kept alive because of the ki that his body percessed. And then he heard a new commotion. Through his blurred vision he saw the newcomer. Was that who he thought it was? Was he imagining it? No, he wasn't. He felt an intense burst of ki, the like of which he had never known of before, it was so powerful. Being almost swept him off the floor, he could sense the fear in the android's being. There was still hope. He held this thought as he started to pass from one dimension to another.
"You want to fight me? Well come on, I'm ready. Fight me you cowards", taunted the gruff voice of Piccolo.
"Target indentified. Piccolo-san. Z class. Terminate with immediate effect"
The dying bodies of Jake, Alker and Ferefire were abandoned, as the four elites lined up against their new opponent. Within a few more seconds, more androids piled into the room. They obviously regarded Piccolo as a very dangerous

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