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Did you know him?

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It all happened so fast. For once I wasn’t on the Airship, I was sent to do some recon work to make sure the Government wasn’t lurking around while we got the rocket setup for launch. Then I saw it, the Airship, badly damaged, heading straight for the Toppat Launch Site. From my point of view, I couldn’t see how bad the damage was so I packed up my supplies and ran as fast as I could back to the site. Everything was destroyed.

The Airship, the rocket, the buildings, everything. Nothing but fire and debris covered the area. I fell to the ground in despair, all my clan members, no, my family, they were all gone. The one place I could call home was gone, taken without a second thought. I wanted to shrivel up and die, I wanted to wake up from this nightmare, I wanted to die with them so I wasn’t alone. Burt was on the Airship, my one close friend gone, I didn’t even get the chance to tell him my real name, something I promised him when we met.

I sat there and cried for hours until it was nightfall, I didn’t wanna move, I didn’t wanna sleep, I just wanted to stare at the ground until I died of starvation. Though that dream was interrupted when I heard helicopters and tanks approaching, along with jeeps as well. Shit, the Government, they must have seen the crash and followed it, I gotta escape. As much as I didn’t wanna move, I’d rather not be captured and imprisoned by the Government. I ran into the forest up the mountains, hoping to escape at the tanks and jeeps, not sure what I’d do if the helicopters saw me.

As I ran and ran, memories of the clan started flooding my mind, from the day I first joined, to the times I made coffee for everyone, to when I made my first real friend… To right now. I stopped and started crying again, not caring who heard me. “Why… Why must the world take away the things I love?” I said to myself, punching the ground in frustration. Distracted by my own thoughts, I failed to see a Government soldier walking up to me.

“Hey you okay there?” My eyes snapped open and I looked up quickly, there stood a member of the Government right in front of me, by the looks of it, he's a pilot. Panicking, I stumbled back and grabbed the nearest thing on the ground, which happened to be a tree branch. “S-Stay back! I’m warning you!” The Government pilot stepped back. “Whoa whoa hey! It’s okay, I’m not gonna hurt ya.” I don’t trust him, he could be pulling me into a false sense of security. “Back off, I know the Government hates the Toppats so you’re not fooling me!” I said as confidently as I could.

The pilot was about to say something until he got interrupted by the radio on his headphones. “Charles! Did you find any survivors yet?” Unfortunately I couldn’t hear the conversation going on but by the way the pilot looked at me, it wasn’t gonna end well. “No sir. Haven’t found anyone, will keep you updated.” Did I hear that right? Did he just- “Yes I just lied to my general because I felt bad. Now please don’t be afraid.” He did.

Considering he just lied to his commander officer, which could seriously get him in trouble if he’s caught, I think I’m gonna trust my gut on this one. Putting down the branch, I slowly get up and walk over to the pilot, who had nothing but a smile on his face. “Hey there, I’m Charles Calvin, you?” I smiled back. “Call me Blocky. Also if you don’t mind me asking, why didn’t you turn me in?” He adjusted his headphones then replied. “I saw you crying and would’ve felt bad for capturing you since you probably just lost a lot of close people to you.” I looked down sadly. “Yeah, I did…”

I started to cry once again until I felt arms wrap around me. “I’m sorry that happened to you. We might technically be sworn enemies, but you seem really nice Blocky.” I stood there shocked, a member of the Government was hugging me, this was probably the most surreal thing that has happened to me. Eventually I hugged back and it felt like time stopped right then and there. A helicopter flying by broke us out of the hug. “Hopefully it didn’t see us, hehe.” I said.

“It probably didn’t but let’s move somewhere else just to be sure.” Charles suggested as he began to walk off. I followed after him as we entered deeper into the forest. The forest was actually really nice when you’re not focused on doing a mission. Distracted by how beautiful it was, I failed to see Charles had stopped and I bumped into him. “Ah! Sorry! Sorry!” I said quickly but he didn’t respond. His eyes were locked on something.

“Charles…?” I followed his eyes and was shocked at what I saw. It was Henry, with cybernetic parts, laying against a rock motionless. Charles slowly walked over to Henry’s body and sat in front of it. I followed and stood next to him. “Did you know him?” I asked. “Yeah, we recruited him to help us take down the Toppats… He betrayed us and joined them and we never saw him again after that.” I gasped. “Henry agreed to help the Government?”

“We thought he was.” Charles said sadly. “But I guess, once a thief, always a thief.” I looked over at Henry, thinking about when he was leader. He seemed so happy back then. “What do you think happened?” I asked. Charles stood up from where he was and spoke. “Well from the looks of it, he was in some kind of battle and got badly injured. Look, he has a bullet wound in his back.”

I looked at his back, there was indeed a bullet wound there. But why? How? “I have a theory actually.” Charles started. “Henry has cyborg parts, the Toppat Airship got destroyed, could Henry have used his cybernetics to destroy the Airship?” I thought about what Charles said as he stared at me.

Then, a flashback came back to me... Reginald called us for a meeting. “Listen up Toppats, I have fantastic news! I have tossed Henry overboard and will be resuming my position as your leader.” I was shocked by this, I didn’t like Henry as the leader but he didn’t deserve to be betrayed like that. “Hey, Hey Blocky? You there buddy?” I snapped out of my flashback and looked over to Charles. “I think I know what happened to Henry Charles…” Charles gasped. “What?”

“After Henry had been in the Toppat Clan for a bit, he was mysteriously kidnapped with no way of finding him. One day though, he called us, asking us to come get him from the Wall. Just as he made it to the Airship, Reginald threw him overboard, leaving him to drown in the ocean… Or so we thought.” Charles just stood there. I started tearing up again, Henry had been the one who took everything away from me. “It was all his fault, he killed my friends, he took away the one thing that brought joy to my life, IT WAS ALL HIS FAULT!” I screamed that last part and fell to the floor, Charles knelt down to rub my back. “I didn’t even get the satisfaction of killing him myself, or dying along with my friends! I’m stuck here! No home, no friends, no family…” Unknown to me, Charles held a hand to me. “We can be friends if you want.” I looked up at him. “What?”

“We can be friends if you want, and I can even find a way for you to join the Government if you want?” I just stared at him. I wasn’t sure how to react. “Unless you don’t want to then I understand-” Hearing that, I quickly reached up and hugged Charles, interrupting his sentence. Charles hugged me back. “I’ll take that as a yes.” I nodded into his shoulder.