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The Cursed Hand: Chapter 2

Vigore's Reality

By Mel E. FurnishPublished 3 years ago Updated 3 years ago 6 min read
The Cursed Hand: Chapter 2
Photo by Vital Sinkevich on Unsplash

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*To listen and read along, play the narration video*

Vigore slowly blinked open his eyes as he struggled to hoist himself upright on a strange floor. He grumbled as he rubbed his head; a fierce pounding relentlessly overwhelmed his brain. Promptly he remembered Luke shooting him with an odd device.

“C’mon boy, time to go,” a familiar voice called. Vigore’s vision cleared as he scanned his surroundings to find himself in a windowless sterile room. He noticed Luke standing by an open doorway, his hands cleaning the gun he used in the forest.

“Where am I?” Vigore demanded as he scrambled to his feet. “What is this place?” Suddenly the cheerful cries of children playing echoed from the halls beyond the doorway. Vigore narrowed his glare.

Luke hesitated to answer, but he snapped as Vigore cautiously peered outside. “Well, if you’d move a little faster, I’d give you a tour.”

Vigore stepped outside into the bright corridor as he stared down the long stretches of rooms. Every door was numbered. Luke frowned as he lifted his hand to the right. The young boy slowly crept down the long clean hallway as he glanced around. Soon they reached a long glass window to their left. Vigore gradually approached the edge of the bridge as he heard loud laughter and banter. His blood ran cold as he caught sight of hundreds of children darting around a large recreational room. A group gathered to collect meals from a kitchen in the far right corner. His jaw dropped as he witnessed another corner filled with obstacle courses and another with tools and gadgets.

“We are an organization that takes in neglected children and abandoned orphans. We help them develop, give them chores and challenges, and teach them various trades and skills. Here, they are no longer alone. Many grow up to work here; some go out into the world and pursue whatever they wish…” he trailed off as his eyes drifted back to the corridor. “We are running out of time. I was requested to bring you to our lead scientist, Ella Fria.”

Vigore reluctantly followed Luke as he strolled down the hall. The boy's gaze remained locked on the children below. His heart sank as he trudged after Luke. “So, where did you find me?” Vigore demanded. “I can’t remember much….”

Luke paused but didn’t turn or look over his shoulder. “Your memories will return in time,” he declared as he reached a large wooden door at the end of the hallway. He knocked twice and turned to face Vigore. “War has unfortunately bred the high rate of orphans across our world. Every day we send out men to save more wherever we receive intelligence… I have been on many missions, and sadly, some ended with a gut-wrenching sight…

"Ella and I personally believe you are fit to follow the path of becoming an agent; however, some of the others disagree. We have been testing you for months to prove to them why we feel this is the path you were born to thrive on. Of course, we could be wrong, but that’s really up to you,” Luke explained with a shrug.

Rapidly the door swung open, and a girl with long brown hair and brilliant blue eyes greeted them. “Oh, hello!” she exclaimed as she smiled. “Luke, I was struggling to reach you–is your tele off?”

Luke smirked as he tapped his temple. Suddenly a holographic display of various information and images flashed before them. “I wasn’t ignoring you; I was busy, see,” he paused as he tapped a bell symbol. “Not even opened.” Ella raised an eyebrow as she smirked. Her eyes shifted to Vigore.

“I assume the boy is your excuse?” The woman turned as she guided them inside. Vigore’s eyes widened as a vast laboratory opened up before them. Plants were scattered all over the expansive room. Ella stopped by a small sterile cot as she directed Vigore to sit. As the boy sat down on the small bed, he frowned as he noticed a screen displaying an image of him slashing off Demonic’s hand. He flinched away as he cringed. Ella quickly snapped her fingers and the display faded.

“You're just who I wanted to see,” Ella proclaimed with a smirk. She soon turned serious as she inhaled deeply. “Vigore, the sword you carried… we’ve been studying it for some time now. Your memories are fuzzy because you were inside a test space for a while. We have been simulating a similar experiment for nearly a year now…” she paused as she glanced at Luke. The suited man quickly closed the door and returned to Vigore’s side as she spoke.

“The others think I’m insane… but I have a theory that the victim isn’t destroyed but morphed. When the disturbing process is completed, there remains nothing but dust and sometimes a severed part. When you removed his hand on accident, its process took a path we’ve seen a few times now… the severed piece and the dust soon merge in a whirlwind that transforms into… into a monster,” Ella reported as she gazed into Vigore’s eyes with concern.

“Now that he knows, I’ll give the bad news,” Luke declared as he tapped his temple. Abruptly, various deformed creatures appeared before them across a holographic display. “Ella believes that the cursed blade has a twin, created from the same hexed steel. The world has grown darker. Some nutcase is breeding more chaos, creating mobs of these beasts and unleashing them on cities across the world.”

“I have been trying to find ways to prove it to the others, but they’re either being paid-off, or their own arrogance blinds them. We need action before they see reason; it could be too late,” Ella firmly declared as she glimpsed at Luke for a heartbeat. Ella’s stern expression and curt tone caught Vigore’s attention as he snapped his gaze between her and Luke.

"We can't launch a full-scale investigation with an experienced team until the council approves," Luke replied without hesitation.

"Screw the council! We could take our own-!"

"Someone is coming, relax on the rebellious talk, please? They might suspend you again."

"Ha! They need me still; even if they want to silence my big mouth, they know they can't without killing me."

Luke sighed as he headed for the door to open it for the newcomer. "Just ease it up, a little at least. I need someone to pester, and you're the perfect subject. What would I ever do with my time if they banished you?"

Ella crossed her arms as she raised an eyebrow. She stared ahead as she leaned in closer to Vigore. "Well, I think if you knew more, you would be jumping on the opportunity to take a stand."

Vigore slowly turned to look at her as his curiosity bubbled up and peaked when he dropped his jaw to pry. Just before he could muster the question, the newcomer barged in with a loud thudding. Vigore whipped his head toward the door to see a tall, muscular man with a clean-shaven face and long blond hair. He had his hands behind his back as he sauntered closer to Vigore and Ella.

"Ella, how sweet of you to reveal so much information to this young lad. He has barely passed the age of 12, 3 years younger than the custom age requirement we set for apprentices. Why do you believe he is so different than the others?"

Ella grinned as she glanced at Vigore. "His genes are of a rare anomaly... even better, its make-up matches the same that flows within the twin brother of the man who we have been hunting for years."

******

TO BE CONTINUED...

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