By the time Darius arrived at the Twelfth Precinct with Maslon and the arresting officers, the others were already waiting. Maslon looked surprised to see Manny there, along with Dr. Sam, and both the lawyers—Ollie Porter and Ms. Oldham.
Manny flew into a rage, cutting loose with a string of profanity in both English and Spanish directed specifically at Maslon. “Chingada su madre, I was asleep, and my niece calls me hysterical!” Continue reading
The following Monday, Darius woke up earlier than he had hoped. He’d had the nightmare again—the same nightmare that had been plaguing him for years. Rather than try to get back to sleep, he decided to get an early start on his day, hoping he might get a quick nap in before going to work. Continue reading
The suburban home of Otto Rekker was not what Darius expected. It was just a plain house—nothing fancy or sinister—with a minivan parked in the driveway. A bumper sticker on the minivan read, “Proud Parent of an Eisner Elementary School Honor Student.” Certainly not the sort of thing you would expect from a notorious supercriminal. Continue reading
Darius found getting used to his new schedule incredibly difficult. His first week on the job he only worked three shifts in a row—Wednesday, Thursday and Friday—with Saturday and Sunday off. Saturdays and Sundays were Manny’s days off, and since Manny was training him, Darius kept the same schedule. Continue reading
“This can’t be real,” said Darius, more to himself than anyone else. He stared at an underground warehouse full of lifeless ACU-64s, the most deadly weapon since the atomic bomb. Some people called them Killbots, a pretty accurate name.
If he could throw up again, he would. But his stomach was empty. Darius felt a wave of emotions that he could not even begin to categorize. Fear and anger and hate and sadness and just about every bad feeling he had experienced over the last eight years, all rushed through him at the same time. His body shook. His fists clenched and unclenched, over and over again. Continue reading
The doors to the elevator closed, and Darius had no idea where they were going. He’d finished his lunch break with Manny and Z-Boe—if you could call it a lunch break at four in the morning—when Manny said it was time for the most important part of the tour. Manny asked Z-Boe to come along as they went to someplace called the Cage. Continue reading
“It don’t matter what section you’re assigned, there’s reports to be filed,” said Manny. “Make sure you keep on top of your paperwork.”
After their tour of HQ, Darius and Manny returned to O3C, where Manny explained the proper way to file reports for different service teams and service branches. Everything was done electronically, and everything had to be reported. Mopping a bathroom floor or changing a light bulb required reports that needed to be filed. Continue reading
They started their tour at O3C, with Manny giving Darius a basic overview of everything, spending more time on the break room and the bathroom than anywhere else. “When you got business to handle, you gotta handle your business,” Manny said. Continue reading
Darius arrived for his first night of work ten minutes early. Knowing he’d be working from eleven to eight, he tried to take a nap, but it didn’t happen. He had trouble sleeping as it was, and taking a nap in the early evening simply wasn’t meant to be. Instead, he spent the hours leading up to his first shift studying the Operations Crew section of the Employee Handbook. Continue reading
The second day of orientation went very much like the first. Darius and the rest of the new employees watched more training videos, after which they got sized for their work uniforms, and then ate lunch together.
Once again, they sat as a group, talking amongst themselves, with Darius saying very little. Xangtha explained that they’d be getting their assignments after lunch. Darius paid attention to everything she said, all the while keeping his eyes peeled for the beautiful girl from the day before. Continue reading