Time: Pre-Modern, 1980 ish, before open internet, but complex weaponry and some technology is produced.
Place: a capital like Atlanta, Georgia but not a giant one like New York, NY.
In the perspective of Steelheart:
I was wimpy once. A scrawny little boy, afraid of the world, but I found the solution to this, the solution to all of my problems.
It was in my tenth year of schooling, and my class was full of normal people living normal lives. Even I was normal, but I wasn’t treated like “normal people”. It was like playing DND with a really low charisma character. Always hated, and people tend to avoid you.
I lived in Chicago, a fun bustling place. I loved the skyscrapers, and the busy city life. When walking on the street, everyone has heads down, not in embarrassment or shame, but to simply avoid eye contact with one another.
My home apartment I shared with both of my parents was small, but it was conveniently located near the school, so I got to walk through these streets on my way to school. Today in particular has been cloudy, with the clouds on the verge of rain, like a water balloon filled up by an overzealous 5-year old.
I walked down the street, backpack on one shoulder with one earbud in. I am pretty sure thats the cool way to do it. I passed stranger after stranger, barely rubbing shoulders with some walking the opposite direction. Recently our school has been under construction, using up more of the precious parking space at the school, so lots of people have conceded to walking, making the streets ever more crowded.
I looked at my phone as I walked, using the people in my peripheral vision as a guide where to walk. I scrolled through my songs and selected one of my favorites to get me pumped up, even though I knew this school day wasn’t going to be like any others. The school neared, and I still had a couple minutes to spare before class started. I put my phone in my pocket and sighed, mentally preparing myself for hours of boredom.
I have one friend, his name was Abe. I had been with him for a while, and everyday I have been pleasantly surprised to still see he was my friend. I mean, the last friend -Ostin- had abandoned me because I didn’t want him to copy my homework.
I walked up to the school, and found Abe scanning the crowd, his eyes glancing over everyone.
“Who are you looking for?” I teased Abe. He was probably trying to find his girlfriend.
He turned to me and smiled uneasily. “You actually,” he responded.
“What do you need me for?” I replied, fully ready to jump into one of his crazy plans, like ordering over 100 chicken nuggets from McDonalds like we did last week, or pranking a teacher like the week before, or–
“My girlfriend wants me to not be friends with you anymore,” he blurted.
My thoughts froze, surprising me like a can of soda accidentally left in the freezer.
“She told me that it was ‘ruining my reputation,’ and ‘I don’t want to be seen with him’. She is a popular girl though, so I have to do all I have to to stay with her.”
I stood there, still trying to find a way to respond. It hurt to have a someone drop out on you, but for it to be a good friend… the people who know you always hurt the most.
“Yeah, sure,” I sputtered, trying not to melt down on the spot.
“I knew you would understand,” he said quickly. Fortunately for him, the bell rang to go to class. “you have been fun, it’s just time for me to move on.”
He quickly walked off, going to class. I stood for a moment, but I had to get to class too. Luckily for me, I had a different class than him, so I wouldn’t have to be embarrassed too much next period.
I sat down in my english class, but my mind was elsewhere. I was handed an assignment on a piece of paper, but I couldn’t focus. How could he just leave like that? I am pretty confident I won’t be able to find anyone else like him.
Suddenly, a series of crashes sounded down the hallway. Not a small one, but like all the desks in a classroom had been knocked over. The lights had seemed to overcharge, shining brighter than they should have. My adrenaline rushed, and everyone looked around the room frightened. Suddenly, in a surge of stress and anxiety, I yelled with everyone else, but I felt something new- it wasn’t like blowing smoke, it was like singing. From my hands.
A blast of power surged from me, turning some of the desks around me into solid steel, solidifying it to the floor. Everyone went berserk, but despite the ruckus, I looked out the window, and saw something new.
A red spot shone in the sky, almost outshining everything else.
The moon known later as Calamity had risen.