People screamed, cities burned, the skies fell and the world shook. This was a dream that Annabelle had since the day her life changed forever. She wasn't afraid for some reason, it was just a terrible event that she was sad that had happened in the first place. Suddenly, her dream phased away into another place, a memory of that day that wasn't filled with death and destruction...
" "Lately I've looked at you and I really think that I... I ... I don't know. I think that I li-like salad. Something about the greenness of 'salad' really makes me feel happy. 'Salad' right?"
March 5th, 2018
Annabelle opened her eyes to her alarm clock. Reaching over, she turned it off, questioning why she had it set during a month where her school was being renovated. In any case, she woke up and climbed out of bed.
It had been five years to the day that the meteors hit Sunset Valley, a town Annabelle had left but not forgotten. Her family had left the town because her mother had gotten a job at Plumbob Studios here in Bridgeport as a television actress, and the adults in the household at the time believed it would be a good idea to leave in case any more meteors hit.
Annabelle walked over to her dresser and grabbed the handle of her clothes drawer, unknowing that the night before had shoved the drawer too far into the dresser causing it to get stuck. After a few seconds of pulling, the drawer was released but Annabelle had let go, causing her to fall back onto the floor.
It didn't really phase her much because she had encountered these unlucky moments since she was a child, and without any more unneeded battles with gravity she managed to put on her favorite spring outfit.
After getting dressed, Annabelle decided to go to the kitchen, where she saw her friends Kelly and Scarlett talking about what Scarlett was reading in the newspaper.
"The Sunset Valley Meteor Park - Five Year Grand Opening: wait... it's opening on the five year anniversary of the meteor impacts that destroyed half the town and killed fifty seven people? How absurd! You'd figure they would, you know, have some kind of memorial rather than build a park where people can have fun! It's stupid, it's ridiculous!"
"It's a park. No big deal really." Kelly said. "I think those people were honored when someone, I'm not saying who, figured out that it wasn't a random meteor shower but the machinations of a madman who worshiped his father."
"Gee I wonder who that was." Scarlett said sarcastically. "Seriously my dear cousin you've been sitting on that for five years. Yes, everyone knows you figured it out, you discovered the truth, you're a regular private eye. I'm impressed, your parents are impressed, at least they were before they took that sabbatical to China. And Annabelle's impressed, aren't you Annie?"
Annabelle walked upstairs to see John playing a video game, which was his favorite pastime. Instead of bothering him, she decided to go to their house's gym which was the favorite hangout of her best friend.
"Come on Jameson give it all you got! Keep pushing yourself! You got it! You are doing it!"
"You're doing what?"
"Oh hello Annie. I was wondering if you'd show up to talk. I know why you're here. It's been five years to the day since the whole thing happened. "
"Actually yes, but I am here to ask you a question concerning something aside from the meteors. Something pretty important."
Tom climbed off the exercise machine and decided to use the treadmill, still talking to Annabelle. "Go ahead, I remember that day like it was yesterday."
"That's good." Annabelle replied, "Because I need to ask you what you truly like about 'Salad'?"
This question caught Tom off guard and he started to fall forward. Luckily he was able to grab onto the console of the treadmill and kept his balance without rolling off. When he climbed back up onto the device he continued running without a hitch. "Uh... uh.... Salad? Salad salad? It's uh, it's healthy, it's versatile, and if you have the right dressing it could be the best food of all time!"
"Oh. Okay." Annabelle said, upset. Sulking, she walked out of the room, not enjoying the fact that Tom couldn't tell her what he truly meant.
Or even worse, if she reciprocated his feelings and something happened to him. He didn't want to put her through pain like that.
Upset that Tom wasn't able to come clean with his past words, Annabelle decided to take a drive to her favorite lookout park. She got the keys to her new car from Maria and drove off. However, as she drove, she failed to notice a blonde man standing on the side of the road, watching her drive past.
"The Lookout Point.", he said.
Annabelle loved these drives through the outskirts of Bridgeport, where she could reconnect with nature in a way she did back in Sunset Valley. After a short drive she found herself at the lookout, where she could see the entire city from one ledge. She could see even more close up areas of the city though a telescope that was put on the ledge.
However, Annabelle was more focused on another thing: every once in a while she would use the telescope to look at the sky even during the day time. She figured since she saw the incoming meteors with just her own eyesight as a child, she could see even further into space with a telescope. Annabelle spent some time watching the sky for meteors, making sure that if another incident like what happened in Sunset Valley would happen here, at least the people of the city would be ready for it.
"Normally people use the telescope to look at the city by day and the stars by night." A voice said. Annabelle looked up from the telescope and saw her classmate, a rich debutant named Deacon Jones, standing not too far away.
Deacon was from a rich family, but his parents died one night and he had taken all the money for himself. While he despised his parents because they did him, Deacon didn't kill them, it was a total accident.
"But you're not exactly 'normal', are you Annie. Are you having a good day?"
"I was." Annabelle said, putting no emphasis on either word. "What do you want, Deacon?"
"From an materialistic standpoint? Nothing. I have everything I could ever possibly want, and if I don't have it, I get it. Through money or power, I always get what I want. For example, I can give you an island, and you give me a date in return. It's a win-win. I can buy you everything you could ever want, Annie girl."
"I'm good, my mom's rich as well remember? But hey, since you can buy yourself anything, why don't you buy yourself a new personality? This one you have is getting too stale and dry."
"Come on girl, I can take you anywhere you want to go, all you have to do is say the word 'go'."
"Here's a place for you to go: jump off a cliff you snobby piece of sh-"
"Is there a problem here?"
Jack Toomes, Deacon's adopted father, suddenly showed up at the lookout point. Annabelle figured that she didn't notice him coming up to them because she was too busy being angry at Deacon.
"Is my son bothering you, Miss Kethrin?" Jack asked.
"No more than he usually does, Jack." Annabelle replied. "Thanks for showing up in any case." '
"Jack," Deacon said, "I'm just chatting with her. No real problem here."
Suddenly Jack walked up to Deacon with an angry look on his face. "It would benefit you greatly if you went home, Deacon, and left this young lady alone. Go."
Without a word, Deacon walked away.
"I must apologize for him." Jack said, "he's been bitter ever since he lost his parents, which I can't say I blame him. Sometimes I just need to put my foot down and tell him what's what."
"I understand where he's coming from." Annabelle said. "I knew some people who were killed a long time ago."
"The meteor shower." Jack said. "I know, you were in Sunset Valley that day. It must have been terrible for you. Deacon's parents were actually visiting the town that day... they were killed by them at the park. To Deacon, and yourself, people like his parents were innocent people with lives of their own, but to the media, they were just... many of fifty seven."
"I know." Annabelle replied.
"It worries me, truly." Jack said, looking out the city. "My great grandparents helped fund this city, and I lie awake at night worried that an event like the one in Sunset Valley would ever happen here."
"Your ancestors helped construct Bridgeport?" Annabelle asked.
"Why yes, yes they did. And when they died my grandparents helped to keep this city going, and when they died the duty fell upon my parents, and finally since they are no longer here in this town they passed the funds off to me."
"But I however realize that this city must expand. It must go beyond it's own borders and the borders of other cities. Imagine, Miss Kethrin, a city that spans an entire continent!"
"That seems unrealistic, even to me." Annabelle said, not caring whether or not Jack knew she was an alien. "Even you are not rich enough to make a city like that."
"Not yet at least. But eventually. The city I am imagining will not be built in my lifetime, nor in my heir's, or my heir's heir's, but the vision is there."
"So when do you plan on starting this 'vison'?", Annabelle asked.
"In due time, Miss Kethrin."
"GAH! Stupid Jack, mess up my chance with Annabelle Kethrin! It'd be better off if he went away for good!"
Deacon kept on his tirade for a solid hour, all the while being watched by someone standing on a hill nearby. After some time, the watcher pulled out a cell phone and dialed his number.
"Meet me at four AM on the roof of The Kethrin Mansion. I will unlock the gate. Remember to be quiet."
"Who is this?"
The line went dead.
"Look at what I've done." The mysterious man said as Deacon approached him at 4:00 AM the next morning. "I've brought you so close to Annabelle, and yet so far. If you want to woo her you need the right skills, and I will teach those to you. In exchange, I will want some things from you, Mr. Jones. First of all..."
"...I have a task for you."