Chapter One

Lightning streaked through dark clouds and thunder roared in the heavens, causing the very ground to tremble. Icy drops of rain pelted from the heavy blanket above, creating a deafening chorus of its own. The city was shrouded in the storm’s blackness, silent and deadly, waiting for the storm to end and for the sun to break through the skyline. Not a single life form could be found on the streets as the heavens raged above. An eerie silence settled over the city, dimming out its dazzling lights that flared in the Main Square and its various skyscrapers. A sparkling white dome rose at the north side of the city, its white towers a glory that did not seem to be opaque by the storm.

Contrary to the marvelous structure, at the south end of the city, untouched by the lights was a mansion, a tall structure that jutted out into the sky. Its towers loomed haughtily, throwing dancing shadows onto the asphalt. A wrought iron gate curved around its spacious lawns, the thick black rods giving a peek of the monstrous structure caged inside. An eerie silence settled around it, dark and oppressive. Its yawning black archways looked darker than sin on a midsummer night and blacker than the gateway to hell. No signs of life could be seen, not even a glimmer of light. It was shrouded in a cloak of secrets, lies, and deceit; the unwanted facts that a government did not want its people to know.

Unseen through the black of the storm, various snipers squatted on the roof of this mass structure, their rifles cocked and ready, and extra ammunition by their side. They would shoot on sight, even if it was a mere stray dog.

Ravans Inter-Dimensional Police Station was inscribed above the building’s entrance, the large white letters untouched by the freezing rain. Inside, men and women worked tirelessly and silently. Their eyes and ears were always on the alert. If danger announced its arrival, they would be there to answer; like always.

The station was well known for its victories, but not for its secrets. It hid those secrets under coats of its accomplishments, particularly against the deadly criminal organization, Red Hawk. Rumors said that after the organization crumbled, a new one sprung out of its ruins, one more dangerous than the last. And so this was the station’s new fiasco: a new veil of deceit. It kept people believing that nothing was wrong, kept them believing that their beloved station laid out the truth for them. If only they knew…

There was a sudden blur in a sniper’s scope and the young man leaned forward. The rain was still unforgiving, roaring against the din of the thunder. Lightning illuminated the guard’s surroundings and he narrowed in to where he had seen the blur. There was nothing there.

He sat back, unsure of what to do next. He was new to the job, just fresh out of the academy. Sadly, he was the last of the batch; many peers were already employed to different stations. He was the only choice for this station, much to its distaste. He was called in for a simple job, to temporarily fill in for an officer who had called in sick. Of course, suspicions were raised and security was tightened. Fellow guards went to the ailing officer’s home, only to find a cold limp body with a gash in its neck. Security was tightened even more and an alert was out to report for any suspicious activities. So far, all was quiet. Until now.

Thunder rumbled overhead, like an angry dragon caged in its cave. The young man shivered and sat back on his haunches, checking the chamber of his rifle. It was full.

He checked his watch which read a quarter to twelve.

Almost time for my shift to be over, he thought. Thank God.

He clutched his rifle tighter, the water trickling over the black metal. He raised the rifle back to his shoulder and squinted through the infrared scope, trying to blink away the water droplets that dripped from his eyelashes. The street was still empty and the metal gate surrounding the station distantly hummed with electricity, keeping the unwanted out. But the unwanted had already arrived.