Chapter One: Unite

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Cole took another drag from his cigarette as he looked down upon the city of Paris. He tried to focus on the what beauty he could find, but the falling snow clouded his mind. Growling angrily, he zipped up his jacket as he turned his back to the city to face the rest of his group.
"When will the Italians show up?" he asked in German, agitated. Lara looked up from her spot in what she figured was the closest thing she was going to get to a corner.
"Idiot, we are supposed to speak in English," she said. Cole growled again.
"Why," he asked, facing her in particular, still speaking in German.
"Because we agreed on that. We wouldn't favor a single language, so we chose a third party language." Lara responded. Riku looked down at the two talking from the top of the tower, a few yards above them. In the dark, Cole could only see the red in the teen's crazy hair.
"Is he still pissed about having to speak English?" He asked in English.
"Yeah," Lara responded. Riku jumped from the peak of the tower to the platform where the two Germans were.
"Look Cole, we agreed on this. You think I'm happy about having to speak this?" he then walked to the side and looked to the city below, but saw nothing through the rapidly falling snow. Cole growled again.
"Fine," he said in English. "When are the Italians getting here?" Lara shrugged. Riku looked to the above platform.
"Kira," he called. "Any word from Lucia or Leo?"
"No," A small voice said. Riku turned to Cole and shrugged. Cole gritted his teeth.
If I have to wait another five minutes, I'm going to kill something, he thought to himself as he took another drag and impatiently tapped his foot. That tap echoed throughout Paris. As soon as he heard the echo, he stopped. Riku approached the edge and looked out at the city. Both of them noticed something; the city of love seemed as if it was holding it's breath. Moments later, what looked like a jet fell out of the sky, landing on a building in the distance, illuminated the entire block in an eerie red and orange flash of light. Riku smiled.
"I guess we know where they are now," he said. Cole smiled as well.
"Lets go get them," the German said. He took a single step away from the edge, put out his cigarette, and rushed forward, leaping off the side of the Eiffel Tower. A young looking girl appeared next to Lara.
"Is his power flight?" she asked in a small voice.
"No," Lara answered, getting up. "But heat rises."
Leonardo sat facing Lucia in first class. They had left Italy on a flight, which just so happened to pass right over Paris. A flight attendant had just passed by, leaving a note at Leo and Lucia's table. Ten minutes till jump, it said. It also had the woman's number on it. Leo smiled to himself. He was sixteen, yet he looked much older. Lucia brought him out of his thoughts.
"OK," she said in Italian. "Lets go over this one more time. The Germans and the Japanese. Who are they?" Leo reached for his backpack next to him and pulled from it a file, smiling to himself as he did so. Despite the girl being fifteen, she always acted like she was an adult. Well, a younge adult, at least. He opened the file and pulled from out four different pages. He cleared his throat and began reading from the first page.
"Cole Kohn, German, Age 16. He was infected while serving time in prison for an assault charge. The file says that the entire prison was infected, but when it was contained, Cole was the only one standing. The government then decided that it was better to put a leash around him than to put him to waste. Apparently, he gain pyrokinesis from the serum." He looked up for a moment. Lucia nodded in response.
"Go on,"
"He also gained nitrokinesis and somehow, he can levitate. Lucky guy." he began to switch pages, when she interrupted him.
"Nitrokinesis?" she asked.
"Self destruction, followed by regeneration. Moving on," he switched to the next page.
"Lara Stahl, German, Age 14. She is the daughter of some german politician. The file doesn't say how she was infected. However, she gained nearly indestructible skin." He switched to the next page.
"Riku Tamahari, Japanese, Age 15. He came in contact with the virus while sharpening a sword. That must have affected the virus somehow, because he gained minor Vorpal Sharpness Manipulation." He paused for a moment, to make sure she was still following him. "He can make his body or anything he is holding as sharp as he pleases. Well then," Leo switched to the last page.
Kira Sharino, Japanese, Age 13. This one doesn't say how she was infected either, but apparently, she gained Lock Manipulation. And, oh." he stopped dead in his tracks.
"What is it?" she asked.
"She...she's a puppet master," he got out, before hastily putting the paper back in the file and put it back into his backpack. He then folded the attendant's note half and put it in his pocket. He calmed down a little, rereading the message as he folded it.
"We'd better go," He said, putting his backpack on and sliding out of his row.
"What is it with you and puppets?" She asked as she got up. He ignored the question as he walked to the end of the walkway. He was just about to say goodbye to the attendant when the entire cabin shook. It shook rather violently. Leo tripped, falling onto his hands and knees. Lucia fell ontop of him, making him lose his balance and fall on his face.
"Wow, right here in front of everyone, Lucia?" he got out. She would have smacked him if the plane hadn't violently shook again. The captain came over the loudspeaker, but Leo couldn't understand a thing he said. He felt one thing, though. The feeling of reduced gravity. They were plummeting out of the sky.
Cole got to the sight of the explosion within a minute. When he got there, he found a plane crashed into a street corner shop. A mix of rubble, fire, and bodies covered the street. Cole looked at one of the bodies. He couldn't tell what actually killed the person, but he knew that it mustn't have been pleasant. The sound of roaring flames surrounded him. He managed to hear  the sound on stone being crushed nearby and knew that Lara had arrived. There was no need to check. He stepped towards what the must have been part of the side. After examining it for a second, he saw that it was scorched from the outside. His mind immediately began working.
"This wasn't a crash." He said, thinking aloud. He walked towards the wreckage. "The plane blew up in mid-air, then the remains crashed here." He continued walking around. "Any rocket C-Grade or above could have done this broke apart a plane like this."
"Where are the Italians?" Lara blurted out, loud enough to cut through the flames and break Cole away from his thoughts. He growled and turned around.
"I was working on that, before you interrupted me,"
"Well, didn't one of them have darkness manipulation or something?"
Cole didn't respond. He heard something through the sound of roaring. A male voice was speaking Italian within the ruined shop.
"Apparently," Cole said as he walked through the flames towards what remained of the entrance. Lara quickly followed.
"Hey," she yelled in English. "Are you the metahumans that we've been waiting for?"
"Forward," A voice said from behind them. Lara turned around to see Riku standing there.
"Where did you come from?" She asked him. He shrugged. Another voice, this one female, spoke.
"Yeah, thats us," it said. From the blazing doorway came a giant black ball. The ball slowly fell apart, putting out the flames around it as it dissipated. Where the ball was, two teens stood. One was a guy, who looked to be in his early twenties, wearing black slacks, a red collared shirt and had his dark black hair combed back. Next to him was a girl in a black skirt and a red blouse, with her hair in a ponytail. Cole looked around, then willed the fire surrounding him to disappear. The street dimmed, bathing the area in an eerie silence.
"Nice trick," The male said in English. "Cole," he nodded to the German teen, who wore jeans and a black jacket, with a black fedora covering his hair. "Riku." He nodded to the other guy  with the wild red and black hair, in a skull t-shirt and shorts. "Lara," he nodded to the girl, who wore black jeans with a chain around them, a collared jacket, and a black t-shirt, with black braids. He then looked around for Kira, but he did not see her. He was slightly relieved. He didn't want to be anywhere near a puppet master.
"Kira," Lucia nodded towards the girl, who wore a black skirt, which would be small for any regular teen, but went to this girl's ankles, a black blouse, and had her black hair in a pixie cut. Leo almost jumped five feet in the air. She stood right next to Riku, but Leo didn't noticed her somehow. Lara mustn't have known that the girl was there either, since when she heard the Italian girl address the young Japanese girl.
"So you must be Lucia and Leonardo," the young girl said. Leo felt his bones chill when she said his name.
"Can we skip the introductions," Growled Cole, as he walked amongst the rubble. "What happened up there? It looked like your plane was shot out of the sky."
"Well," Leo began, "We were preparing to jump, when the plane shook. The plane shook again and thats when she got on top of me and shielded us."
Since she was standing, Lucia slapped him.
"I tripped onto you, simple as that."
"Whatever. She tripped onto me and shielded us." he put tripped in air-quotes, "I didn't see anything else."
"After I shielded us," Lucia continued, "the plane fell apart. We landed on the floor of that shop."
"It must have been lovely, considering all the aristocratic bodies we saw scattered about,"
"We talked for a moment, then we heard you call us,"
"Now here we are."
Lara could tell that those two had known each other for a long time. They seemed like a team, able to complete each other's thoughts, how Lucia was annoyed at Leo's remakes, yet unsurprised by them. She wondered how long they had known each other for. She envied them, getting to work with someone that they could consider a friend. That seemed nice, as opposed to getting the pleasure of working with a homicidal pyro like Cole. She then looked to the Japanese recruits. What's their story?
"Can we get on with whatever we're supposed to do?" Cole again growled.
"Please," Leo added. "What were we send here to do, murder someone, steal something, destroy the entire city, what?"
"If I recall," Riku chimed in, "We were supposed to...get acquainted with each other."
Leo looked at Lara. "I like where this is going." Lucia elbowed him, hard.
"Well," he got out, "it might be too late to sit at a cafe and chat,"
Lucia and Lara realized something simultaneously. They both somehow forgot that they were currently surrounded by dead bodies. Chills crawled up their spines. Cole remembered the bodies as well.
"Was there anything reason someone would have to shoot you down." Cole asked, attempting to move to a subject which he found interesting.
"Well," Both said, but Leo took over the conversation. "This happens almost everytime we leave Italy." Cole found this subject very interesting.
"You too?" Cole and Lara had been shot down as well, but had not mentioned it. He didn't like to admit it, but he couldn't fly for long.
"Apparently, we have enemies already."
Riku looked around.
"How, we haven't done anything yet," he asked nervously. Suddenly, he calmed down, but couldn't tell why.
"May I suggest moving to a place with less dead bodies, before the authorities arrive?" Leo said, motioning for them to leave. The group soon found themselves back at the top of the Eiffel Tower. Cole arrived first, followed by Lucia and Leo. Lara arrived a few minutes later. Riku and Kira just seemed to appear there at one point. Lara looked upon the scene of the crash. Police were arriving on the scene.
"Get to know each other," Cole laughed, suddenly, drawing the group's attention. "We're not some scout troop, we don't need to be friends to work together." He moved to look off the end. Before he could say anything else, Lara interrupted him.
"Regardless, we should at least get to know the people we'll be working with." Cole stared at her for a moment. She could almost feel his blue eyes piercing her heart.
"Fine," He said after a moment. "Then lets get on with it,"
"OK then," Leo said, walking closer to the group. "We know all of each other's powers, correct?"
Everyone but Cole nodded.
"OK," Leo continued. "Now, should we say something about ourselves, or something stupid like tha.." Cole cut him off and held his hand up.
"Shut up for a minute." he said. "Listen."
Leo listened. The rest of the group did as well.
"What is it?" Riku asked. Cole scanned the sky. He saw what he heard and pointed to it.
"Over there." He pointed to something rocketing towards the group. "Rocket," he said. He smiled.
"That must be the model of rocket that took down our planes." Lara looked at it frantically.
"Lets get out of here."
Lucia raised her hand to silence her.
"No need, I got it," she waved her hand in the general direction of the rocket and it seemed to disappear from sight. She waved her hand again, but nothing seemed to change. Lara looked at the girl.
"What did you just do?"
"Shadow shield." She responded, simply.
"But who fired that," Riku asked. Cole began to levitate.
"Lets find out. I want to kill something," He levitated in the direction of the rocket.
"Don't go alone, you idiot," Lara yelled after him, but to no avail. Lucia created a large black disk underneath her and motioned for her to get on.
"Is this thing safe?" she asked, stepping onto the barely visible disk.
"Just hold onto me,"
Lara held on to the Lucia as the Italian made the disk rise into the air and follow Cole as he flew. Leo watched the two girls fly off after Cole.
"Do you two have a way to go after them?" he asked. He turned to face Riku, but he wasn't there. He looked around the top of the tower, but both Riku and Kira had disappeared.
"Oh. Well," he called out. "I'll just... wait here, I guess." he sighed. He walked around the platform a bit, then watched the city below. A few ambulances had arrived to carry off some of the bodies.
"That's going to take awhile," he said to himself in Italian. He began humming songs to himself while he watched the authorities clean up the mess.

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