I never really thought about how lucky I was before. I could do whatever I wanted, and I didn’t need to think about other people. I was practically invisible nobody ever noticed my presence. I only had my few close friends whom I did everything with. I always talked to them when I needed help or when they had problems. My closest friend was Kendrick, he was completely the opposite of me but the same age. He was a real ladies man, charming, well built with the brown tan and he was the star football player the real kind and not the **** American one, and even though I didn’t like the big crowds he always pulled me with him, to the football games and parties. Pascal was my second friend; he was a year older than me and we always called him Pac. He was brown as well and good looking so he didn’t miss much that girls liked, he just couldn’t find the right one. You could call him a hopeless romantic waiting for the right girl. As for me, I was a seventeen-year-old, who never really cared about my looks. I was chubby with a cute but elderly looking face and I was the most awkward person you could end up in conversation with, my name was Neal Aidan, but I get called Nate. We all went to the same school, Aurora Central High, and we were all Juniors waiting to finish High School and leave this town. My parents were the stereotypical South Asian parents. Expecting me to become a doctor or a lawyer, but I didn’t want to do any of those things and instead I just wanted to figure out my own path. If that wasn’t enough, they were very strict only allowing me to stay until 11 PM and I couldn’t have any girlfriend even though nobody wanted to date me. My little sister was the schools head cheerleader, even though she only just started in high school. She had made more friends than I had in two years, she was the star athlete and first in her class, which put a lot of pressure on me. I guess she was pretty since every boy I knew was wrapped around her little finger. I never really talked to her about high school, since it looked like it all went great, but you never know what people are going through.
She was just starting in our class after the summer break. She was muscular but not boyish muscular, you could just faintly see her muscles in her arms and her abs. She was wearing ripped black jeans and a fitting white crop top with a black leather jacket, her hair was a mixture of curls and waves, the color of the hair was chestnut brown. Her eyes had different colors, her right eye was hazel, and her left eye was green. She walked up to the blackboard beside the math teacher, Mr. Gainly, and introduced herself. She was from Denver and her name was Aphrodite, she was seventeen years old as well. After she finished introducing herself, she went out looking for somewhere to sit. There were two available seats. There was one besides the goth girl, who had buried her head in her vampire book and there was the seat beside me. Little me, who had few friends and was socially awkward. Me who never dressed properly or set my hair before school. Why the **** did this happen, couldn’t I have gotten some notice, so I could have prepared for today. I looked up at her and suddenly I stared into her eyes, they were like a maze you could never get out. Is she smiling at… at me? Do I smile back? Let’s try. Oh no, what am I doing that looked too creepy, wait if she’s sitting beside me, she will talk to me. Did I brush my teeth before I left home? Oh, my breath is going to stink, and she will never talk to me. “Can I sit here?” her voice ripped me out of my inner conversation. She asked again, but all I could do was smile listening to her soft and beautiful voice. “Yeah, I’m good, what about you”, she stared weirdly at me and said: “I’m good thanks, but I asked if I could sit here”, “Yeah sure knock yourself out”. Oh god, what is wrong with me, first I don’t listen to her and know I said knock yourself out, what am I, a middle-aged man with a midlife crisis. “Soo, what’s your name?”, “Erhh, it’s Neal Aidan, but you can just call me Nate, and your name was Aphrodite right, like the Greek goddess”, why did I say that, know she must think I am a nerd now. “No, they named after their dead dog”, wait is she joking, I can’t tell, and I don’t want to be rude, why is she smiling now, “I’m kidding, I am named after the Greek goddess”.
The weeks went by, and I enjoyed my time with my friends and we always went out in the weekends with me attending some of the parties held by my classmates. I couldn’t stand the party scene, but it was the only way I could see Aphrodite out of school. Even though she had only been at our school for a few weeks she already had tons of friends and admirers, many of which were a part of the football team. They all had the normal “I own you all” jock look, I didn’t know how Kendrick could stand playing with these guys. He was so different from them, he cared about what others said, and he didn’t think that he was higher than any other. He would act just like a normal teenager, but how. Kendrick and I got invited to a party at one of his football friend’s house. I didn’t want to go, but eventually Kendrick got me convinced that this was an important part of the high school life. What did I know, I had never been invested in parties? I never really drank so I didn’t have much to do but look at how the others made fools of themselves. But I had a good feeling about this one, I was finally going to talk to her. Kendrick and I finally arrived at the party looking around for any familiar faces but there weren’t any I could see, and when I looked back at Kendrick, he was pulled away by three cheerleaders, no way to get him back now, guess I’m on my own. I small talked with a bunch of the party goers who were surprised to see me at a party, I just shrugged them of saying I tried new things. Then I finally saw her, Aphrodite, beautiful as ever. She wore short black dress, oh my, how could she make the most basic look here, look better than any of the other girls, she was surrounded by her little fan group, who followed her anywhere and scared anyone to close away. Guess that’s where I am going, hope she wants to talk to me. I walked up to getting a weird glance from of the girls beside her. “What is he doing here? Are they just letting anyone in? And don’t you have some decency to put on some better clothes?” I looked at myself shook, I thought I wore something great that she would like, guess I f***ed up. “It’s okay Jenny, I know him he’s fine, I’m just going to talk to him for a while”, wait she recognized me and wants to talk, this is going great already, she started walking away, giving me a sign to follow, “uhm don’t talk to the trash, whatever!” I heard Jenny say before I started talking with Aphrodite. “Uhhh, so yeah, how have you been doing?” my voice trembled, “I guess everything’s fine, you know we have Christmas break coming up so I’m excited for that, what about you?”, she has such soft voice, I bet she could make anyone fall in love with her, “Everything’s fine as well, I just thought it had been a long time since we last spoke, and I wanted to know if you had settled in fine”, I looked around while we talked and saw Pac sitting with some drama kids and Godwyn, I hadn’t talked to him for a while. Maybe you guys won’t believe me, but I have more than two friends, and Godwyn were one of few others. He was always happy, and liked to help others, he was a little chubby as me, but completely opposite of me, when it came to the social aspects. He seemed sure of himself and always made others laugh with his humor and charm, and it didn’t hurt that he was the school’s best actor.
I had been depressed for a long while nothing worked out for me, the girl I liked didn’t like me back and I was getting more and more paranoid. The city wasn’t in any better shape, there was a string of robberies, all looking similar and which were done quietly and quickly, there had been an increase in drugs around the school and the rest of the city and police officers started disappearing. The rumor was that there had been a takeover of the power in the city and the mob was trying to cleanse the city and infiltrate it with their people. Maybe I couldn’t help myself, but I could try to help the city. I should start with unveiling, who spread the drugs and, who made them. My first suspect was a Scottish guy from school, whose name was Jake. I had seen him a couple of times but never talked to him, but I knew that he was a part of the football team, so he was popular enough to have a couple of buyers. I was sure that there were other dealers at school. I had asked around and found out that Jakes last lesson would finish a while after mine, so I waited for him to come out of his classroom. He went out the front school doors and walked a couple of blocks down the street, I kept following him, hiding behind tree’s and the cars there were around. He started looking around to see if anybody was following him, and luckily, he didn’t see me. He then started turning every time there was an opportunity to do so and he started running after a couple of minutes. I kept my distance, but my pace still matched his but, he had the advantage of being in better shape than me and kept running for 10 minutes. I barely managed to keep up with him, but I pushed through and ended up 10 meters behind him, out of breath and energy and in a state of all most passing out. He went inside a corporation called Red Lion, I snapped a quick picture of it and zoomed in on Jake walking over to the receptionist. They talked for a while and the receptionist then called somebody and he passes to move on in the building. What do you do now? Should I try the entrance, or should I find backdoor? If I don’t act quickly, he will get away. I looked around the building and noticed an alleyway around the back of the building with no security, so I went on through the alley, why aren’t there any doors on the backside? Don’t they have like a garbage chute I can try? Giving up I thought about finding the blueprints for the building, so I went down to the archive and searched through the many files finally finding it in the back covered in a layer of dust. I should try the movie scene where they blow the dust off. When I blew the dust off it surrounded the area, I stood in, so I started coughing, how can I even make the best scenes look dumb real life? That’s weird why do they have hallways under the building, what are they trying to hide from the public. It’s a twenty-story building with lots of rooms with no name, if I get in I should these places out, let us just take some pictures. After I got home, I reviewed the photos and the blueprints, to find something I could use We were two weeks in the summer holiday, and I had made little bit of progress in my investigation. The Triad had been a part of Aurora for a long time and owned most of the corporations until Red Lion and the drug problem became big. There were three major players playing to control Aurora, the Triad, the people behind Red Lion and a third and unknown group. There had been an increase of gang, drug and property related shootings the last few weeks and the police struggled to fight against the gangs. My father, who also was police officer had told us about people dressing up and fighting the gangs, some of them were more malicious than the others. Some had guns and others used their hands or bats to fight them with martial arts. It’s almost funny thinking about it. Black Crane, Sunspot and Atomic Steel to name a few of these heroes, they had also made their own costumes to stand out from others. But they had made a difference in the war against the gangs. Some of the heroes had also made suits that made the bulletproof and others had suits that made them fly. Some of the criminals must have seen the ability the heroes had so they started making suits for themselves so they could win over the police in a fight, so they could get away with their loot. Suddenly the crime rate spiked, and the heroes had a hard time protecting Aurora, some of the heroes even quit when they saw the power others had.