for the story so far
My name is Keegan and I did not have a clue what was happening. Paw man, Dad not being dead. Jeezus and Joseph, fucking hell who were these people. I was lost, swimming in an endless whirlpool.
“We really need to sit down and explain things to you,” Paw man offered. Maybe my face portrayed my confusion, maybe it portrayed something else. I was still speechless.
“Ga,” I opened my mouth to speak but nothing comprehensible came out.
I tried again. “My father’s dead.” I managed to stutter.
“He’s,” Paw man was silenced with a stern glare.
“Not here,” Boss man stated through clenched teeth. He was rigid. His eyes were starting to get wider, rounder and more yellow, his nose starting to flatten out.
“Tor,” Paw man called what I assumed was Boss Man’s name.
Boss man focused momentarily on something in the distance.
“Move,” Boss man ordered and I found myself swept through the streets in a flow of men. It seemed really stupid to describe a group of men as flowing, but they did. Their movements were really smooth like they were all dancing to this amazing music. I was part of that too and it was fast. We moved that way for several minutes before the flowing stopped and normal walking resumed. We must have covered several city blocks, from one side of the city to the other.
“This café is fine,” Boss man and Paw man shepherded me inside and the others took positions up outside. Two of the creatures, the men disappeared around the corner.
The Café we were in was dark, quiet and held no other customers at the moment.
“Three coffees.” I heard Paw man order.
“Name,” the barista asked.
Paw man looked around. “Do you have any other customers at the moment?” He asked the boy.
“I need your name.” the young man insisted.
“Well, I am not giving it to you. Get us three coffees.”
The man harrumphed and took Paw man’s money.
“My name is Ettore Chaise,” Boss man stated. “This is Finian Raon. We are warriors of the Clan Declan. You may call us, for the moment Chaise and Raon. First names in our culture are only used by the closest of friends when permission is granted by the owner of the name.”
“Unhun,” I replied.
“Your name is Keegan Declan.” Chaise stated. I didn’t say anything. The young man who made us coffees placed the coffees in front of us and disappeared.
“My name is Keegan Matthews,” I responded firmly. “I’ve been Keegan Matthews all my life, you obviously have the wrong person.” I stood to leave.
“Your adoptive father had his heart torn from his chest.” Ettore Chaise spoke quickly.
I sank back down into the chair.
“His heart was ripped out but he was not my adoptive father.” My voice was strong and confident.
“Your mother died from a genetic weakness in our race. On Earth, it appears cancer-like. She was diagnosed with Ovarian cancer, but it wasn’t and the doctors here would have put her complete inability to respond to any form of treatment as a medical oddity, just another variation to cancer. They probably asked your father for permission to remove her ovaries at death so they could study her variety of ovarian cancer more closely.”
“Dad said no,” my voice wasn’t confident now, it was soft and childlike. I was unsure. What he said was true. The doctors had said Mum had such a rare variety of ovarian cancer, she could have been the only one in the world with that strain.
“Of course,” Ettore Chaise seemed to think that this had been a foregone conclusion, that my father would have refused to allow her body to be used for science, even such a small part of it. “Once your mother ceased to live, the genetic shielding she was using to hide her true genetic makeup would have disintegrated, leaving any doctor to identify her DNA as not of Earth.”
“Would that have happened to Dad,” I asked.
“Yes. That is actually when we became aware that you might still be alive.”
Okay, I could handle the bit about Mum, that rang true with what Doctors had said about her cancer. They’d been dumbfounded how the most basic treatment had no impact and how one medication had actually sped up the cancer’s growth. And Dad, his heart had been ripped from his chest, but I’d disappeared so soon afterward that I had no idea what happened too him. I hadn’t even hung around to see if there was a funeral. I’d had my own service for him and that was all I needed. I amended the thought, apparently, I was going to need some answers too.
“I’m not adopted.”
“Am I right about your mother,” Chaise asked.
I nodded. “But Dad was my real father.”
“Declan, he wasn’t. No one is really exactly sure of what happened but a few months after you were born, you went missing along with your nanny, your wet nurse, and your personal guards. At the time, no evidence was found about what happened too you. Seven years later, someone came to your biological father with news of a remote crash site on an uncharted planet. The Declan Clan crest was found along with remains. The remains were so messed up that no one could tell how many people died there.”
“It can’t have been too hard, count the skulls.” I snapped back fighting. I was going to be speechless again soon.
“It is hard to determine bodies when skulls were missing, but there were no legs missing. In the end, it was determined that the bodies had been ransacked by scavengers sometime in the previous years and you, along with your staff were declared dead.”
“Your grandmother never believed it.” Raon interceded, that earnt him a glare from Chaise. “What, this is pretty serious stuff, I’m lightening the mood.”
“Don’t,” he was ordered.
“No, you mean to say if I buy into this crap that I have a grandmother,” I asked Raon.
“Sure, she’s a bit of a dragon. Likes hunting and terrorizing her relatives.”
“That would be cool. Are you meaning a literal dragon,” I asked? The question just tumbled out. I couldn’t help myself.
“You’ll have to come with us to find out,” Raon managed to blurt out before Chaise cut him off.
“When your adoptive father was murdered and his body autopsied, it was discovered that he did not have Earthen DNA.”
“What,” I asked again. “What the fuck is Earthen DNA?”
“Yeah, I study biology, I know what DNA stands for but what do you mean by Earthen.” I couldn’t help myself. One side of me wanted to get the fuck out of the coffee shop and away from these crazies, the other side of me kept on asking stupid questions that I wasn’t prepared to hear the answer to.
“Declan, life exists on more planets than can ever be imaged. Each planet has some kind of DNA. On one planet, it may not even be recognizable to us, on another planet, it will be so incredibly similar, yet completely different, as is the case between the people of Earth and the Clan Declan of Trilanton.”
Chaise sipped his coffee.
“It is possible for us to blend in with the human species. It may even be possible for us to breed with humans, but those are philosophical conversations for another time. At the moment, we need to discuss you.
When the police investigated the death of your biological father, a coniunctionem, a thread of connection, was pulled between our planets. We were sent to investigate why someone who was declared dead 10 Earth years ago had just died and in a way that indicated something of a Trilanton murder.”
“Verses a plain old murder,” I snapped back. “My Dad,” I emphasized the Dad, “was murdered. It had nothing to do with this Trilanton.”
“It has everything to do with Trilanton you idiot.” Chaise was grumpy now.
“You are the son of the Clan of Declan, you were stolen or lost and we have found you. What have you got on Earth, what have you got here?”
“I have to find out what happened to my father.” I exploded in kind and I stood, pushing my chair back. Chaise echoed my stance.
“They are coming,” he said. His eyes narrowing like cat eyes, his nose flattening.
Thanks to Ross Hetherington for coming up with this week’s suggestion on a starter sentence.