A gentle reminder, I'm not dropping this novel till its done. Ive been very busy and will continue to be busy as Thanksgiving has ended and Finals have begun.
Slower updates till Finals are done is unavoidable.
Enjoy the chapter!
Also of note, HUGE thanks to our latest Patreon, Robert! You are a beast mate! A beast 🙂
Apoc Now – Chapter 32 - Captured (1)
When David is killed instantly, his mind and body stop functioning. His Life Orbs, however, still remain active. From David’s perspective, as soon as he dies, he respawns, fully healed and repaired. From other human’s perspectives, however, David’s body remains on the ground for a full second before he respawns, his Orbs taking effect exactly one second after his death.
Therefore when David opened his eyes back into the world, a second had passed.
David opened his eyes, looking around disoriented. He saw Thavius and Stacy lying on the ground, his various Life Orbs strewn about, having fallen when he died. He sent a command to Terry to assist him in battle as he came aware. He took a step forward, steadying himself when-
A second 14.5 mm armor-piercing bullet blasted through his skull, instantly killing him.
David opened his eyes, disoriented from dying again. As soon as he spawned, Terry immediately sent him a small feed of information.
There are several armed snipers taking fire at your position from approximately 4 miles outbound at 37 degrees north of your location. The width and speed of the bullet seems to match the PTRS-41, an anti tank sniper rifle used by the Soviet Union in World War II.
Due to the much longer range than is normal, I would project that these rifles have been upgraded via the System, and therefore are much stronger. Seeking cover would be the optimal decision.
David took in all of this information in an instant, preparing to dive forward and get to cover. Before he could move, however, another anti-tank bullet slammed into his skull, killing him again.
A second later, David opened up his eyes ready to-
David died, instantly killed as he respawned.
Over the next minute, David was killed a total of 57 times, shot instantly as he respawned. On the 58th time he respawned, however, his constant death changed.
David opened his eyes, clutching his head and screaming. Every single second for the past minute had been filled with pain as his head exploded over and over. The ground around him was covered in blood, the remains of his previous deaths spattering the ground.
In the split second that he managed to open his eyes, David saw several block clothed soldiers, all of them wearing odd looking goggles that glowed standing over Stacy and Thavius, tying them up. Odd-looking machines sprayed a white light around his teammates heads, flicking oddly in the air. The light gave off an unsettling feeling, something David couldn’t quite describe. He felt a needle stab into his neck as he looked at the soldiers. The shape of the soldier's bodies seemed off for some reason, as if they weren't human.
The world around David suddenly disappeared, darkness swarming as he fell unconscious, the drugs that had been injected into his system knocking him unconscious.
Some amount of time later
David looked around the room blearily, his eyes sweeping across the bed he was strapped too. He twisted his arms to the left and right, tugging at the straps. He was in what looked like a hospital room. He felt extremely cold air flowing out of a door to his left.
A loud alarm suddenly went off as he pulled at the straps, his mind still operating sluggishly. He felt Terry try to communicate with him, failing because of his disorientation. He saw several figures rush into his room, running towards him.
The last thing he saw before darkness overtook him again was an eerie doctor wearing scrubs stab a needed into his arm, knocking him unconscious.
An unknown amount of time later
David woke to darkness.
He clutched at his head, moaning. He felt like someone had stuffed his skull full of cotton, a thick feeling making it hard to think. He blinked a few times, his eyes slowly adjusting. He saw a blank ceiling in front of him.
Abruptly, memories flooded back into David, of the fight, of where he had been, of his friends. David shot up, sitting up from the ground. He quickly took in his surroundings.
He was sitting in a completely blank room. The floor was pure white, and on closer inspection, completely seamless. There was a single door set in the wall across from him. The room was perhaps five meters wide, not very large. There was no furniture or furnishments of any kind.
He looked down at his clothes in surprise, realizing he wasn’t wearing anything normal. Instead of his Glass Emperor Plate, David was wearing a set of white patients scrubs, the kind of clothing article he could see himself wearing while at the doctor for a checkup. Titan Slayer, his weapon/necklace, was nowhere to be found.
David quickly called up his status, trying to figure out where he was.
Or well, he tried to call up his status. He gave the mental command several times, spoke the word out loud a few times, all to no avail. No matter what he tried, he couldn’t bring up his System Status screen.
As panic started to set in, David tried to send a request to Terry. Again, he received no response. It was as if his powers had disappeared. When he tried to use his Life Orbs, he found that they had failed him as well. Nothing was working.
For the next several minutes David tried every possible command to get any of his powers to work. Unfortunately, his attempts all failed.
He sat on the ground for a few minutes, breathing heavily. He forced his panic down, concentrating on the situation.
“Alright. Alright.” He said aloud, calming himself. David began formulating a plan.
“I’m not dead, so whoever kidnapped me obviously has a use for me.” He mused aloud, remembering the syringe a doctor had forced into him, causing him to fall unconscious.
“What I need to do is focus and calm down. I need to find out where I am and who ordered me brought here.” As he thought aloud, David rapidly began brainstorming. The fact that he was alive was a pleasant surprise for David. Now that he was captured, he might as well make the best of the situation.
David kept planning, but decided to not think aloud. While the walls seemed perfectly blank and empty, he couldn’t count out listening devices or powers.
Abruptly, David heard a loud beeping sound coming from outside his door. Without warning the door set in the wall suddenly opened, bright light spilling into his room.
“Powered Number 68774, please stand and follow the Warden.” A mechanical voice rang out, coming from a small floating orb. The orb was about the size of a basketball, with several glowing lights shining on it. It looked like it was made completely out of metal.
Standing behind the Orb was a large, armored figure. The figure was easily over two and a half meters tall, a towering hulk covered in metallic armor. It was completely encased in that metallic armor, with a faint glow of light coming from the eye slots. There was no mouth slot to breath from.
David stood up, feeling a little dizzy as he stood. He walked outside the white room, following the glowing orb obediently. The mechanical orb seemed to pivot in place for a moment before setting off, leading David away from his original room. The giant hulking figure followed closely behind David, not speaking.
The mechanical floating ball suddenly started speaking again, informing David of his situation as he walked. They were currently walking down a long white hallway. There were several doors that seemed identical to the door of the room he had been in, making David believe that he wasn’t the only one that was captured.
The ball spoke,
“First, I would like to extend a warm welcome on behalf of the 5th Overlord of Va. Powered Number 68774 you have been freely recruited to assist the 5th Overlord of Va in his efforts to restore peace and unity to the Plane of Va.”
“As one of the newer members of our glorious land, you will be placed in our education facility to help you adjust to your new situation.”
“Due to the unique circumstances behind your recruitment, as well as your unique ability, your cooperation will grant you special privileges.”
The floating ball suddenly stopped, standing before a large entranceway. They had walked for around a minute, passing by several rooms identical to the one David had woke up in.
“You will be informed of the rules in the Newcomer Briefing. Please follow the Warden to the education facility.”
The large door in front of David suddenly opened, the door rising upwards into the wall to let David past. He looked out on the world he would live in for the next several months. He looked out on an enormous prison.
David was currently standing at the entrance of what was apparently an enormous half sphere. The area past the doorway looked like it could be on earth, with rocky ground and trees spreading of to the sides. There were several enormous white and grey buildings set in the middle of the area he could see, with several hundreds of small figures moving around. He looked up, staring in astonishment at the enormous sloping ceiling. The ceiling sloped off to a point at the exact center of the half sphere with a giant globe emitting a bright light, a miniature sun. The ceiling itself was also pure white, reminding Dale of an enormous uniform cloud.
David was suddenly pushed forward, prodded in the back by the enormous Warden. David began walking, following a well lit path towards the large buildings in the center of the half sphere. The large white door slammed down behind him, ceiling him off from the rest of wherever he was.
As David walked down the path, he noticed several dozen Wardens standing about on the pathway, many of them standing to the left and right of the entrance David had come through. He saw several other pathways extending from different entranceways in the giant half sphere, similarly guarded. He also saw a few figures being led down different pathways, in similar situations to his own.
David quickly marched down the pathway, escorted by the enormous metallic Warden. While the large white buildings seemed quite close, David quickly realized the scale of the place. It took him nearly twenty minutes to reach the large buildings just by walking. The half sphere he was in was huge.
As he walked towards the white buildings in the center, David was able to make out more and more details of the other figures walking around. At first glance all of them had seemed normal, when he was so far away. However, now that he had a chance to get up close, he realized he had been completely wrong.
Many of the figures were grotesque, completely different than a normal human. Some figures had an extra eye, some had different skin colors. Some figures had heads that were more blockish. There were a few figures that were freakishly tall, taller even than the giant Wardens.
David gaped as he looked around, coming to a realization. Several of the figures here matched other figures. These figures looked natural as they moved, not as if they had been experimented on. He could only come to the conclusion that they were species of another race.
As his mind raced to come to terms with this realization, David was forced to continue walking. He noticed several other Warden escorted figures walking towards one of the smaller white buildings.
In total, there were roughly 50 enormous white buildings in this area. Some were taller, some were shorter, but all of them were very large. A few small buildings surrounded all of the larger buildings. David was escorted inside one of the smaller white buildings.
He walked into a sort of entrance hall/lobby. It was well made, with great arches supporting the ceiling. Little to no furnishing covered the hall, just a small desk with a guard in the center. There were several armed guards at the entrance, similar in shape to the metallic covered Wardens.
A small line had formed in front of the desk, with several figures and Wardens quietly waiting. David saw several other humans in the line, making a mental note to try talking to them later.
David waited in line with the others, watching as the figures filed past the creature sitting at the desk. When it was David’s turn to file by, he got his first look at a Controller.
Controllers, David would come to learn, were a rank above regular Wardens. Because of their higher rank, they were permitted more powerful gear and weaponry. The Controller in front of David looked very similar to the regular Wardens. However, this being wore a fiery red armor piece, instead of the regular metallic one the Warden’s wore. The creature gave off a very powerful aura.
The Controller looked down at David, checking a small blue screen. Even while the creature was sitting, it still towered over David. It must have been nearly 3 meters tall.
A quiet metallic sound rang out. Suddenly, the creature in front of David began speaking English.
“Ah, you must be Powered Number 68774.” The creature said, tapping its fingers on the desk. The fiery armored fingers made a loud rapping sound.
“You made quite the stir at your recruitment. I see that the recruiters tried to take you down so they could quietly rewind you after securing you, but you apparently refused to die. Normally that's a nasty habit, but it seems that it was on accident because of your power.”
The red armored man lurched forward suddenly, slamming his arms down on the desk. The already quiet room dropped to being completely silent, not a single person moving.
“Your power is unique here, 774. The first of your kind. Do not think that makes you special, or gives you special rights. You are to be a supplier, just like the rest of the Powereds here.”
The man suddenly waved his hand, indicating that the Warden was to take him forward. David followed, completely confused. The way these beings talked made it sound like he had willingly come here. He walked forward towards the door at the end of the hall.
He walked in on what looked like a large study area back in college. Desk after desk lined the walls, with small bookcases blocking each desk from the next. There was a small screen in front of each desk. He could see several figures sitting down at desks near the entrance, with their respective Wardens standing behind them.
David walked over to one of the desks and sat down, waiting to see what would happen. The desk lit up as he sat there, glowing for a moment.
Abruptly, the screen flashed and a small sphere appeared in front of David. It was a glowing purple orb, flashing on the holographic screen. The Orb began speaking.
Hello new recruit and welcome! I’m sure you have many questions, and do not fret, all of those will be answered here today! Welcome to the Newcomer Briefing!
To start, you are now a recruit in the mighty Powered Army of the 5th Overlord of the Plane of Va. As such, your duties and requirements will be listed at the end of this informational session.
The Plane of Va is the most powerful plane in the IntraUniverse. Countless Billions of beings exist on this plane, an endless world of expanse and wonder. The 5th Overlord of the Plane of Va currently controls a large section covering nearly 20 million square miles. There are six other Overlords, all of them vile and attacking creatures that must be defended against.
Thanks to our glorious leader, the 5th, we have protection and safety. As a new recruit in the Powered Army, you will be entitled to rewards that equal your contributions.
In order to ensure the safety of new recruits, all recruits are housed in one of the five Heliospheres, large globes that provide a safe and protective environment to support the campaign. You currently reside in the 4th Sphere. In order to keep this environment safe, the Heliospheres and surrounding area cancel out all powers granted by the System.
Your power has been listed as a “Life Orb Master.” Our research indicates that you can create 10 Personal Life Orbs and 3 Non Personal Life Orbs daily. As a gift thanks to your unique power and assistance, you will be allowed to keep your 10 Personal Life Orbs daily. You will only be required to provide us with your 3 Non Personal Life Orbs daily. Your other ability to upgrade your body to become stronger via energy storage will remain useful in your daily work.
You may activate your powers in the Unlocked Chamber, one of two areas within 5 miles that your powers will work. Abuse of this privilege will lead to extremely steep repercussions.
Your other daily requirement will be to fulfill a full quota in the Underground Toil Mines. Because of your Energy Transformation, the required quota has been increased accordingly. Your powers will work here as well.
Your A.I. companion is, unfortunately, of no use in our work.
You can find great glory and power on the Plane of Va. Work hard and you will be rewarded, slack off and you will be punished.
Welcome to the Plane of Va.
The screen suddenly went dark. David kept staring at it, his mind racing. It was a great deal of information to take in all at once, but David had managed to figure out a few things. He ordered his thoughts quickly as the Warden pulled him to his feet.
He had been kidnapped and force recruited into a foreign army on another Plane. The last thing he remembered was being taken down by what he had assumed were Russian Snipers. He remembered Stacy and Thavius also being taken down and assumed they must be somewhere here as well.
While his powers didn’t work now, the being on the screen had informed him that his powers would work in the “Unlocked Chamber” and in the “Underground Toil Mines,” wherever that was.
For some reason, they didn’t seem to have full information on what his power did, and he certainly wasn’t going to tell them. While these beings were super powerful, seemingly capable of hopping dimensions just to kidnap Supers, his power was apparently the first they had seen of it. They knew he could spawn the Orbs, but they didn’t know about the Designation Shop. Therefore, they would underestimate him.
While it might not be much, David felt a sliver of confidence return to him. This advantage was something his jailers knew nothing about. He would bide his time till he could unlock some of the truly powerful abilities, power so mighty he could not be leashed.
He would rescue his teammates and escape this prison.
A determined light filled David’s eyes as he walked out of the education facility, facing his first day in the Fourth Heliosphere.