“Jacob! You in here?” Isaac called out to his brother after scouring the whole house for him. “This is the last room! I know you’re in here!”
Isaac entered his brother’s room, which painted the picture of any child-at-heart teenager. Superhero posters lined the walls and video games stacked on the counters. Still, the room was relatively empty when its owner was missing, and that was a result of the wild goose chases Jacob would force Isaac into.
He won’t find me this time, Isaac heard his brother’s voice, but the room was empty. Isaac knew his brother was somewhere in his room, his presence confined within its walls.
Isaac turned to Jacob’s closet, the only place left to look. “Found you,” he said.
As he began to open the closet door, a set of fingers crept onto Isaac’s shoulder. He slowly turned his head to look at it, but there was no hand there.
“Come on, you’re not that hard to find these days,” Isaac said, as if his brother was right in front of him.
“What!? You were about to check the closet! You’re unbelievable, you know that?” Jacob’s voice reverberated through the room as he slowly reanimated in front of Isaac.
“Hey, I can hear your thoughts from all over the house. A guy can’t have his fun?”
“Whatever,” Jacob rolled his eyes.
Isaac laughed his way out of Jacob’s room. He grabbed the doorknob, but hesitated opening the door.
“Something wrong?” Jacob read the perplexed expression on Isaac’s face.
Isaac felt a presence in the house, someone that didn’t belong. Someone as powerful as their whole family.
“Someone’s here,” Isaac whispered. He had a terrible feeling that this certain someone should not be in their house. “I’m going out to see what’s up. Stay here.”
Isaac slowly turned the doorknob, and peeked his head outside the door. “Get out of our house!” He could recognize the protective voice that reverberated down the hall: his mother, screaming at the unwanted visitor. Isaac called out to her mind, Mother, are you alright?
Isaac, don’t come closer! Take Jacob and go! Isaac was already down the end of the corridor to where his mother was. He peeked around the corner, cautiously. With half of his head past the corner, he saw a chair fly towards him. Isaac swiftly pulled his head back to dodge it, and the chair was an inch away from taking his head off.
Isaac breathing sped up. His heart raced faster and faster. He was frozen, not knowing whether to help his parents, or return to Jacob and run. Two different fires, neither strong enough to thaw his mind out.
It was a second, maybe two. Time seemed to stop altogether, and Isaac couldn’t breathe. In a fraction of time, Isaac’s mother and father lay lifeless on the ground in front of Isaac. Their eyes were stuck open, like they could see the steel that penetrated their skulls only a moment before impact.
Mom? Dad! He tried to call out to their corpses, if by some miracle they were alive. Mom!? Dad!?
Tears dripped from Isaac’s eyes as the reality of the situation came back to him. His body froze up again as a shadow began to creep up his mother’s body. Isaac could sense the intruder right around the corner, approaching slowly.
Another shadow encroached his father, and Isaac began to sweat. He had only known of one intruder. How many more were there?
Isaac? What’s going on over there? Jacob’s thoughts reverberated through Isaac’s brain. The thought shocked Isaac out of his petrified state, remembering that Jacob’s safety was his priority now.
Isaac dashed down the hallway to his brother’s room. Jacob! We have to go! he commanded.
Where’s Mom and Dad? Jacob asked as he emerged from his closet.
That’s not important now! We’re gonna have to jump out the window. It’s our only way out. You go first!
But, what about—
Go! Isaac demanded, and Jacob nodded his head, opening the window. Isaac watched the door carefully, using his power to levitate his brother’s desk and barricade the door.
Jacob put each foot over the window and sat on the windowsill, then leaped down two floors onto the ground. However, Isaac was still in his brother’s room, beginning to put his foot out the window.
Suddenly, the desk soared to the other wall, shattering to pieces, and the door slammed open. Isaac knew he wouldn’t have enough time to jump out without putting Jacob and him in more danger.
“Freeze!” Two men holding assault rifles charged into the room. They wore uniforms that resembled police, except with jet black armor and the initials NWC stitched on their chests. The New World Coalition. Isaac remembered all the news stories he saw, where the NWC tracked down “special” people, like his entire family. He couldn’t let them get Jacob too.
Isaac took his foot out of the window, and turned to the men.
Jacob. Go on without me, and stay hidden until you’re far away from here.
Isaac? What’s going on?
Another man walked into the room in similar armor, but without a weapon. His eyes were blood-red, almost serpentine, and he gave Isaac a twisted grin. His hair was grey, but black at the tips, like it had been charred. He took small, intimidating steps. The closer he got, Isaac realized that the burly man in front of him was the person that he sensed all along. No wonder he had no weapon; whatever he could do didn’t require one.
Isaac put his hands up, and kneeled on the ground. “I surrender,” he said.
“Look at this kid, pretending to be brave, when he’s really a coward.”
Isaac’s tense body loosened up. By now, Jacob had to be long gone. That thought eased him, and gave him the confidence to speak, “Only a coward would work for the NWC. I know you’re one of—" Isaac was reluctant to say it, "one of us.”
“Telepath, eh? Ok, if you think you’re brave then, let me show you what real pain is like. You! Give me your gun!” The brute wrenched a gun away from one of the NWC privates, and aimed at Isaac’s head.
Isaac looked through the tip of the gun. He wasn’t afraid anymore. “Do it. I’m not afraid to die, not anymore.”
The brute’s face contorted as he pulled the trigger. The bullet passed clean through Isaac’s shoulder. Isaac didn’t even flinch.
Blood poured down Isaac’s torso. He never felt the warmth of blood before. It was...oddly comforting to him. The warmth reminded him that he wasn’t dead yet, and there was a life still to live.
“You can torture me all you want. You can kill here like you did my parents. Nothing will change.”
“Enough!” The brute yelled, punching Isaac in the face, knocking him out cold.
Jacob, be safe. Isaac whispered in his final breath before he fell out of consciousness.