The Tower

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Warning

There are some gory bits in this story, so it may not be suitable for younger people. If you do not like that sort of thing then please press the back button now!
Dean Thorpe

A Story By Dean Thorpe

This is a rough draft of a sci-fi / horror story I wrote MANY years ago, so some of it is out of date, it still needs a LOT of work, but I would still value any comments on the story so far. It is a complete story as it is, but there are many improvements I want to make. There is a second part that I will add once it is readable!

6:45

Even as I had been waking up that fateful morning, I had known that the coming days were going to be momentous and extremely unforgettable for some as yet unforeseen reason.


I had awoken in my room much earlier than I would have normally and it had still been quite dark in there. I laid there for a while barely awake trying to make out the strange silhouettes that were being projected on my ceiling in such a surreal way. Its so strange how such normal objects can create such weird shadows when car headlights are shining through the window. I had a really strange feeling of terror and dread.

It was going to be my first day at Bexatonia Universal Technology College, but I knew that today was going to be more important than any of the many other first days I had been through in the past.

I climbed out of bed and after switching on the light I went over to the corner of my room and got some food out of a bag in the cupboard to feed my two pet rats Far-Ted and Jiwani. I gave them the food and filled up their water container. Some of my friends were scared of them, but most thought they were really cool.

It seemed like a good time to start getting ready and so as I thought I better make an effort to fit in for once, so I put on some of my coolest clothes. I normally tried not to fit in, but I wanted to see if I could go through at least one day of being 'normal'. I had always hated that word, it sounds so boring to me. I had never been that kind of person and I was not going to start now. I put on the best pair of black jeans I own and a black Lada T-shirt. All of the cool people wear Lada as they are one of the coolest labels on the market. It was hard to believe that they had started off making cheap cars. Just look at how they have changed now. I suppose that some things have to change, car companies in particular. When the car price war of 2025 happened most car businesses had to shut down. Only three survived and they were Lada, Ferrari and General Motors. Lada finally gave up the car business after a lot of pressure from Ferrari and changed to a clothes company. Ferrari and General motors came to an arrangement and Ferrari was given complete control over the European car industry. That meant that if I had wanted to buy a car it would have to have been a Ferrari.

I went down stairs and headed into the kitchen for breakfast. I did not know how much of that genetically modified nutritional garbage I could take. My Granddad has talked to me about the food that was around when he was young. It sounded so very good to me. He said that they used to put flavourings and colourings into the food to make it much more interesting. It could not have been any worse than that grey flavourless slop that I had on the plate before me. They said that if you eat this kind of food all your life then you can live to the age of 120 without having any major health problems, but I would have gladly give up a few of those years to be able to enjoy my food for once.

7:45

Before I went to college I decided that I wanted to play a computer game to help me relax. I went through the box of disks to find the ones I wanted. It was Syndicate Wars VR 3 that I was trying to find and it was such a big game it came on two DADE disks, each of these hold over ten terabytes each and are only just over two centimetres wide. Because of their small size they were also ideal for sneaking into college and playing there, as I would do anything to brighten up an otherwise boring day. I inserted the disks into two of the four small disk drives on the front of my Sony Frontier games console and powered it up. I put on the VR headset and after I had logged on to the Psybernet the title sequence of the game began. I skipped through that and selected my favourite weapons. Then started the game and got straight into the action. I found it strange to think that people used to play games on small flat screens. These days the headsets use direct retinal imaging to project the pictures straight into your eyes using special lasers. This technique creates very high resolution graphics that are almost as good as the real world. The virtual reality environment that they create is so good that some people stay in there all the time that they are awake. I have even heard stories of some people dying in there. This is supposed to be because their brains got so used to the virtual world that they could not cope with the real world once they came back out into it. I can understand how this feels as I have played this game once for eighteen hours without a break. It had taken me a couple of days to really get back to normal life in the real world. I do not normally play for this long in one go, but that day I was not going to give up until I had won a game. I suppose that is the only problem with playing against a team of Amyger's. They apparently have better developed brains than humans. Some say this is because their planet is in what scientists have called a dark light system. It is a series of planets spinning round a black hole. Until the Amyger's arrived on this planet 20 years ago no one had any idea that such a star system was possible.

I looked at the watch on my virtual wrist and the time was 8:35 so I decided I better leave for college. I always felt nervous on my first day at a new school or college. It would not have been as bad if it was the start of the term, but unfortunately it was halfway through the year and I would be the only new person there. I knew what this was like as I had done this many times before. My parents were always moving from town to town because of their jobs and we had never really been able to settle anywhere. Despite all the practice I have had in the past I have never been very good at making friends. I wondered if there would be anybody at this college I could make good friends with.

I had only really stayed in touch with one of my friends from the all other schools and colleges I had been at. I had known Chris for around eight years and he was the closest thing I had ever had to a best friend, but I only saw him every now and then. He was a hacker like me and we had become friends while studying computing together. Time was ticking on so I grabbed my things and headed out of the door. I went to the bus stop and waited for the next one in the rain. You would have thought with the invention of hover buses that they would be much more reliable. How wrong could you get, they have all this technology and yet they are still always late.

9:05

Eventually the bus got to the main entrance of Bexatonia College. The rain was getting heavier and fork lightning was streaking across the sky. I do not think I have ever had a colder and wetter start to my first day at a college. I had felt soaked to the skin and my clothes were heavy with all the water they had adsorbed, so much for trying to look cool. I had been to the college once before and that was for my interview, but that was the one and only time. The whole college was a very intimidating place. The main building had not changed much in all the hundred or so years it had been there, but everything else had. You could see the sci-tech research tower standing like a dark guardian over the rest of the college. It looked like around twenty floors of steel and blacked out windows. It had a dark and dangerous look to it. Lighting had streaked across the sky behind the tower turning it into an evil looking monolithic silhouette. I did not want to go into that place, but unfortunately I knew that most of my lessons were going to be in there. Trust me to have had IT as my main subject. The other thing I did not like about this college was all the security. There were camera's everywhere and retinal scanners on all the doors keeping the college secure from prying eyes. I know people are more security conscious these days, but this was ridiculous. It was as if they had some dark secret to hide. I do not know what I was thinking of when I signed up for this college. They may have the best pass rates in the southeast and a high amount of people getting top jobs straight after leaving, but at what cost. Bexatonia College had a reputation for being very strict and I had also heard that all the best facilities were for alien use only. I have been told that only a few of the most intelligent humans were ever allowed into these classes. I hoped I would be one of the lucky ones. I had always been gifted when it came to computers, but I did not know if that would be enough. Amyger's could be very annoying some times and I had been in a few fights with them at my last college. I had lost all of them as they are much stronger than humans. I had only lost really badly once and that was against one of them that called himself Loader. He had smashed my leg and put me in hospital for two weeks. My leg had healed quite well, but still gives me trouble sometimes. The problem with Amyger's is that they are a telepathic species. They can not read minds, just send messages to other Amyger's. You could see them looking at you and then they would all laugh. This has always really irritated me as I was always paranoid that they were laughing at me.

9:10

I headed for the main office and was greeted by an android. The office was small and had dull grey walls, there were bars on the window and it felt like being in some twentieth century prison cell. The android seemed pleasant enough, but I had always had a distrust for them. They preferred to be called synthetic life forms and they could get quite angry if you called them anything else. They are shaped like a human and all based on the person who invented them. This had always made it hard to tell them apart. They had hair that they were allowed to style anyway they wanted, but they still all looked alike. This one had a short blonde hair and a long ponytail. Scientists had tried for years to get them perfect, but still could not get them quite right. The one in front of me was an old 500 model. You could spot these ones a mile off as they were created before polymorphic skin and so they had a silver tint to their skin. I told him the courses I was going to do and he asked me to step up to the retinal scanner. After a few seconds a bright flash hit my eye and when my vision cleared I could see all my details on the wall display. I felt surprised that they did not have the size of my dick as they seemed to have just about everything else about me anyone could possibly have ever want to know. They must have been linked into many databases to find out all this much information about me. The android told me to go straight up to my form room which is room 504 in the tower. I left the office and headed down the corridor towards it. The glass roof along the corridor allows you to get a really good look at the tower. Up close it looked even bigger then it had from outside. I made my way out of the double doors at the back of the main building. I used the retinal scanner to open the tower doors and headed inside. The tower was built on the site of the old sports centre. When construction had started a lot of the local people had complained about the size of it. There was talk at the time about bribery going on as the local council granted permission without even asking the opinion of any of the local people. This was very unusual as these days you had at least six months of red tape and questionnaires just to put a little green house in your own garden. I did not care anyway as I lived a few miles away down by the air port. You learn not to act like you care about this sort of thing. People who have complained in the past seemed to have ended up involved in fatal accidents. Corruption is very bad around here. Basically anything that the aliens want, the aliens can get without any questions asked. Even the government turns a blind eye. Space travel would be nowhere near as advanced if it was not for the aliens help. Without their help work on the Dimension drive would never have even been started. the aliens could have just told us how to build it, but instead they just gave us a few clues and pointed us in the right direction. The Dimension drive used space folding technology to make you technically travel faster than light. It must use a lot of power, but the aliens have never allowed them to give out the details to people not directly involved in the project. I have heard rumours that some of the early design work went on right here at the college. There has always been a lot of rumours about what kind of research goes on up there on floor 18. I do not think any human had ever been up on that floor. I was determined that I would find a way to get up there one day. The wonders that must have been contained up there locked away from prying eyes like mine.

9:15

I decided that I better stop day dreaming and get to the form room before I got into more trouble than I wanted on my first day. When I got there I introduced myself to the form tutor. He seems normal enough to me, I had put up with much worse in the past. He was human, around thirty and was dressed quite casually in a black shirt and navy blue trousers. He introduced me to the rest of the class and they seemed like quite a mixed bunch of students. About a quarter of them were human and the rest were aliens. The tutor gave me a boring talk on the rules of the college, fire regulations and their use of computer laws. It all sounded pretty strict to me, but I was not bothered by it as I planned to keep myself to myself and just try to work as hard as I could. All I wanted to do was to get all my qualifications and get back out again to the real world, too much studying can really do your head in.

Next he gave me a map of the college and a timetable with all my classes on it. I had a pretty full timetable as I was doing a number of subjects. I have had a few near misses with the principle at my last college for messing with the computers, but that was the only fun I had in life and I was not going to give up now. I sat down and listened to him telling everybody about some boring day trip to a small local computer firm that was happening soon. I had been on plenty of these trips and these businesses all seemed the same to me. Before long he had waffled on through the whole of the tutor period and it was time for me to make my way to the class.

9:45

My first class of the day was Information Technology Applications and this pleased me as it was one of my best subjects. I went up all those stairs to floor 17 and entered room 1701. There is a lift, but unfortunately humans are not allowed to use it. The claim it is so fast it goes from the ground floor right up to floor 18 in under five seconds. The aliens can cope with this, but the G-forces are much too high for the fragile human body to be able to withstand. I wished I were in better shape. I suppose that after a few months of these stairs I would be in great shape.

I had been worried that the class might be difficult as I was coming in half way through the academic year. I need not have worried as it was child's play for me. I have had many years of experience as a programmer writing all my own software and I had also worked as a systems analyst for a while. There were also a few years of experience as a hacker that I could not put on my entrance application form. Hacking is looked down upon very seriously. I have never done any hacking that could hurt anybody. I just had a curious mind and this had got me into trouble more than a few times. Luckily for me I had never been caught for anything big, but I still made sure that nobody at the college knew about the shadier side of my past. The class was about using computers to plot flight paths in space. I had been doing this since my first year at senior school. All you have to do is calculate a course involving speed changes and the effect of the gravity fields from other planets. I did my work in half the time of any of the other students and then just sat there for the rest of the lesson listening to the others moaning about how hard it was and all the problems they were having. I was really disappointed with this class as I hoped that as it was a good qualification that the work would really be something to get my teeth into and not just this pathetic kids stuff. The alien teacher had seemed very surprised that I had been able to do the work this quickly. If I had kept this quality of work up, I might have had a chance of getting into those special research classes I had been so interested in after all.

10:30

The next lesson was back in the main building, which meant going back down all those stairs again. By the time I had got to the next class I was very tired and sweaty. I had been dreading this lesson as it was history, but I was pleasantly surprised. The lesson was on the music of the late twentieth century. I had always had a thing for some of the more interesting music of this period. The teacher was a human lady of around eighty with hair that must have been dyed as it had been jet black when by her age it would have definitely been very grey. She was dressed in old fashioned flowery clothes that would still have looked out of date even in the twentieth century that we were supposed to be studying. The teacher started waffling on about 'Kylie Minogue' and 'Take That'. About half way through the class it changed to the subject of heavy metal and how it had corrupted the brains of the youths of that time. I could not believe the garbage that the teacher was talking. My granddad had been a great fan of this type of music and he had turned out normal enough. I suppose it was just the government trying to oppress freedom of speech again. I started a project on the group 'Megadeth'. I had always liked Megadeth since the time I found some in the attic of my granddads house. I wished I could include music in my project, but it was illegal to even listen to this music.

I suddenly had a fun idea and although it was a slightly dangerous idea, I did not care as I had felt like having some fun. I inserted one of my DADE disks I had brought from home and accessed one of my virus files. It was a special virus I had written for use at school, but I thought this would be a good time to use it. When it was activated it moved itself into the college computers memory. It was a stealth virus and so it moved around the protection software they had installed. Once it was in position it accessed the college PA system and heavy metal music came out of every speaker in the college. It only took the system about 20 seconds to track down the virus and eradicate it. The teacher guessed that it must have been somebody in the class as it was what we were studying. I clicked on another file and all of the log files that show who had transferred the file were destroyed. It had been stupid to play music while in that class, but they could not track down who did it. My final touch was to leave a symbiotic virus that would crass any terminal that tried to locate who created the virus. I continued my project and downloaded a few pictures of the group from my computer at home. I added some text agreeing that this type of music was a bad influence on people and that it was good that it had been banned. I wished that I could have told the truth, but I did not want to get kicked out of college on my first day.

11:15

Lunch time came next and I headed down to the cafeteria and ordered some food. The cafeteria was a very large room painted with bright shades of blue. This was in total contrast to the bland grey of the rest of the college buildings. Unfortunately with the blue coloured room and powerful air conditioning the room had felt very cold and uninviting. There were only around fifty humans eating their lunches, but just like the rest of the college there were a lot more aliens. To me it looked like there must have been at least two hundred of them. They were just sitting there silently eating, but I bet they were all communicating telepathically as you could see there facial expressions changing as if they were having normal conversations. I could tell their emotions much easier than I could those of humans because you did not have the words to confuse you. When humans are talking they can sound happy, but are they really feeling like that or is it just an act. When all you know is their facial expressions it is a lot easier to tell. Suddenly a group of the aliens all turned and looked straight at me, for once I wished I could not tell their emotions as they all had hate in their eyes. I was a human and they did not seem to like the idea of humans being in 'their' college, especially when some of them had been in my IT class this morning and I had managed to do my work faster than they could. My food arrived and the bland lump of food that had been placed in front of me was not at all appetizing. The law states that food served for humans at places like colleges must be good for you, but this seemed a little extreme. I ate what I could and threw most of it in the bin. The aliens students did not have to eat the same rubbish as us, but by the look of the leftover food on their plates, what they had been eating was not much better than ours. I headed out of the big double doors by a drinks machine and noticed a few students hanging around by a shelter. I decided to go and see what they were up to as they looked kind of suspicious. When I entered the shelter I could smell a wonderful fragrance and knew that it could only be some sort of illegal substances as nothing legal could smell so delicious these days. My suspicions were confirmed when I walked over to the small group of humans. One of them had a small food generator and he was creating beef burgers. All of the remaining cow's and sheep that had not been eaten by humanity had then become extinct in 2020 by the CQB241 virus. After that all types meat and that had included artificial beef was now highly illegal. I was so tempted I asked if I could try one of them. I would not normally have tried such a thing as I had never been interested in eating illegal foods. Apart from hacking I had always been good when it came to the law. I could never understand why people wanted to waste their lives by taking drugs and drinking alcoholic fluids. They looked worried as they did not know me and they could get into a lot of trouble if anyone found out what they were selling. After a lot of persuading I managed to get them to sell me one of the burgers. As I took the first bite I knew it was wrong, but I would not have stopped eating for all the money in the world. This was the first time I had ever tasted meat and it tasted good. I had read that in the 20th century when you were still allowed to eat meat that people had actually decided to give up meat and become vegetarians. I could not understand how anybody could not like the taste of meat, but then again if more people had been like that then more animals might have survived and they would not just be something to look at in the display cases at the environmental history museum in London. I thanked them for my burger and they told me that they could get other things for me if I wanted. I asked what they meant and they said that they had drugs if I wanted some. I told them that I was not interested in that sort of thing, but they gave me a free sample of something anyway. I went back into the college and put the drugs in the nearest waste disposal unit. They could throw their lives away with that stuff if they wanted, but there was no way I was going to join them.

11:45

Back in to the tower I had gone. This time it was for Amygees, which is the language that the alien's use when they are not talking telepathically. I had always been bad at languages, but Amygees was not like any other. The whole language was made up of different notes and each had a different meaning. It was a nightmare of a language. I knew people who had been badly beaten because of whistling a tune which unknown to them was insulting to the aliens. The teacher was alien and every time anybody made a mistake he gave me a look that could kill. Like all of the aliens he was very tall and thin with big black elliptical eyes. He had been dressed in normal human clothes to try to put us at ease, but with his grey skin and those piecing eyes we just could not relax.

I keep referring to the aliens as he's, but in fact this is not true as they are both sexes within one body. The result is a species that even if one alien got trapped away from the others it could still procreate. I find this very scary especially when the whole gestation cycle only lasts six weeks.

I was very pleased when this class was over. As we were leaving the room the teacher had handed out an information sheet telling us that we would be having a mock exam next week. This was definitely the last thing I needed to hear at the moment.

12:30

The next class was average as it was English. I had hated English at school, but now I needed it to get the job I wanted. We were set a piece of work to write an essay about how life would have been at the college fifty years ago. This I found interesting as it let my imagination run wild. What would life really have been like back then? Yes I had read books on the past, but what was it really like. All the books I had read on the subject were ones written by people commissioned by the government and were tame watered down versions of the events that had happened. Back then there was so much more freedom of speech. Now you have to watch your back twenty-four hours a day just in case they are watching you. Every where you went you had to have your retina scanned to get in and so they knew exactly where you have been going and what you have been doing. I can not imagine what it would have been like to be able to just go out and do things. I heard my Nan and Granddad talking one day and they said that you used to be able to go into shops and buy books written by different people. I do not know whether to believe them as it does sound a bit far fetched to me. I sat there for a while and tried to think about the past. It seemed so much brighter than it was now. Back then what did they have to worry about. In comparison to today's huge problems things like AIDS, a little bit of global warming and even their insignificant wars seem pretty pathetic. I wish I had been born back then in the 20th century. It sounded much more interesting than life today. I do like something's about the world today, especially my computer as it is much faster than they could ever have imagined back then and I do not think I could cope with any less than a couple of hundred terra bytes of RAM. I entered a few pages of text into my terminal and then I sat there just looking out the window for the rest of the lesson. The tower dominated the view. You just could not get away from it. All of the other buildings in Bexatonia were only small as it was so hard for humans to get planning permission for anything over four floors tall and this meant you could see the tower from almost anywhere in the town. The bell had already gone and I made my way back out of the classroom and towards the tower for my next class.

14:00

On the way through the long dimly lit corridors I saw the teacher from my Amygees course and a smart looking student arguing. The student was complaining that he had been kicked off of the course because of him and that it was not fair. The student was acting really aggressively and offensively towards the alien and when the alien tried to restrain him he hit out. My teacher fell backwards cutting his head open on the cold steel edge of the stairs. Pale yellow blood came running down his face and started to spread all over his clothes. The teacher looked dazed and I went to help him up. He had not done anything to me and I could have done with a way of getting in with the teacher of my hardest lesson, especially with a mock exam coming up so soon after arriving. As I helped him up he span round and his arm extended to over twice its normal length and hit the student in the chest with a crunch of broken ribs. The student flew through the air and hit the wall and I heard the horrible sound of his spine breaking. His body fell to the floor twisted and broken. I had never seen anything like it. His body was smashed and yet he was still alive and screaming out in total agony. The teacher walked over to him and he looked at the poor student as if he was looking at a piece of dog shit on the bottom of his shoe. He then put his fist straight through his head as if it was not even there. His face was a total mess and what was left of his brains were dripping slowly down the wall behind him. The aliens arm returned to its normal size and he just turned around and thanked me for helping him up. I barely heard a word he was saying as I was in total shock. There were a few of the other students that had been hanging around crying loudly. How could that teacher have done that to him? Yes he had attacked him, but was that any reason to kill him like that. I knew that this would be covered up like the other incidents I had heard rumours about and that the best thing I could do was get to my next class and pretend I had not seen anything. I went back to the tower and made my way up to room 1701 and waited for the teacher to arrive. Nothing was said about what had happened. The other students were acting as if they had not seen anything at all. I wished I could be like them, but I could not as I needed answers and knew I would not be happy until I had them. The class was just more of the same rubbish that we had done earlier. So when I had finished my work I started to work out how to hack into their computer system. I was lucky in that my monitor faced away from the teachers and the other students were too busy to notice what I was doing. I got past the password system quickly and then started to browse through the files on there. I knew I could not spend to long doing this so I copied a couple of dozen terra bytes of data onto my disks and got out as quickly as I could. I knew I would have plenty of time to go though the files as soon as I got home. The final bell rung and I started to pack my things away.

15:30

On my way out of the college my form tutor came up to me and warned me not to talk to anybody about what I had seen. He said that he knew of at least twenty students that had been killed and at least the same again that had vanished. I tried asking him why nothing had been done about it and he just said that if it was just his job at risk he would, but they would have killed him.

I quickly made my way home and went straight to my room. After all the stress of the day I decided to lay on the bed and relax for a while.

17:30

I must have dozed off as the next thing I knew was awaking in my now dark room with my mum yelling at me to come downstairs for dinner. I tried to eat something to keep up my strength, but I only managed about a quarter of my dinner before feeling sick and having to run for the toilet. My Mum asked me why I had not eaten all my dinner and I said that something I had eaten for my lunch at the college had not agreed with me. I made my way back upstairs and into my room. I powered up my terminal and then started looking through the some of files I had copied from the college, but they were all seemed to be in Amygees. I as about to give up when I found a whole section of graphics files. There were video animation's and still pictures. I started going through the video and found the security camera footage files. I found evidence of twenty-five murders of students. I was horrified by what I saw. The one I had seen killed today was bad enough, but the deaths of some of the others had been much worse. In one it showed a group of four people that must have been students by the look of them. They were moving in to attack one of the aliens while he was getting into his car in the front car park at the college. They had knives and baseball bats, but the alien was still much too fast for them. Its body expanded in the same way as the one today had except this one's whole body expanded. It must have been almost twelve foot tall. It grabbed the nearest student and snapped his back in half. He then ripped his head off and threw it at one of the others. It hit him in the stomach so hard it knocked him back against one of the fences. He was electrocuted instantly and sparks flew out from all around his body. Then he fell to the floor looking just like a piece of burnt wood. I could see that his body was still shaking from the extremely high voltage. It had only been a few hours since I had been leaning against that fence while waiting for the bus this afternoon. I thought to myself that I must remember to avoid those fences at night. The next one of the students it at swiped with a razor sharp claw that had extended out of the aliens wrist. Carving him open in a deep diagonal slash from his left shoulder down to his right hip. Even with the low quality of the video footage you could see his guts splashing down on the floor. The poor student just stood wobbling there for a couple of seconds looking down at the remains of his stomach before the alien sliced his head off. The last student had tried to run away, but the alien was much too fast and it just ripped his entire body in two. He was on the floor trying to drag what was left of himself away when the aliens foot came down squarely on his head splattering it all over the floor. After watching all this I very nearly threw up. I could not let this continue any longer. I continued to go through more of the aliens files until I found the information I was after. The complete maps of the tower were now being displayed before my very eyes. I switched the VR to 3D mode and it created a virtual version of the tower for me. This gave me an advantage as you could make the wall semi transparent and it lets you go anywhere you want. Using this I found a carefully hidden door on floor 17 where I have my IT lessons. The door led to an extra flight of stairs up to the top floor. There were no details of exactly what was on this floor. That information was classified and only available to aliens with 'Delta' level security clearance or higher. These plans had been made by the architects and as some of them were human collaborators they could not have been allowed to access to that kind of sensitive information. The computer just showed me a long corridor with a few doors on either side. The only other detail that was shown was the two 4000 model androids that they had posted as security guards. I had heard people say that the 4000 model was a seriously advanced prototype of some kind, but that was all I had known. That had changed now as I could see them in every detail. They were very large robots designed for use in wars. They were based on the rough shape of the aliens and had many kinds of weapons all over them. Whatever method I used to get in it would not involve me getting past these awesome killing machines. I knew I had to find another way if I did not want to finish up dead like those other students.

21:30

I decided to play some more of Syndicate Wars VR 3. This had always helped me think in the past and this time was no different. I got beaten again, but this time I did not care. The way they had beaten me had given me the very idea that I had needed. I had been protecting a scientist in an underground bunker and I had heard the lift start on its way down to the level I was on. I had gone to the lift doors and waited to shoot whoever or whatever was in there coming to attack me. Unfortunately for me the lift was empty except for a small explosive device. A bright flash and the game over message was all I had known about it. I wondered if this trick could stand a chance of working at the tower to take out those heavily armed android guards. A human like me could not use the lift because the speed would kill or badly injure whoever tried it, but that did not mean I could not put some kind of bomb in it.

23:30

It was getting very late and I needed to catch up on some sleep if I was going to be any use tomorrow so I crawled into bed. I lay there for a while thinking about the things I had seen. I could not get those images from the security tapes out of my mind. Every time I closed my eyes all I could see was that last student crawling away. The look on his face was such terror. He was only about my age and looked like quite a normal person to me. The way he was dragging himself would have almost been funny if it wasn't for the fact the entire bottom half of his body had been severed by that alien. As for that final blow, there was just no need for that at all. He could have let him live, but no he just crushed his skull like a plastic cup. I suppose it did stop him from being in incredible pain and even with the medical science of today he would have almost certainly died from those horrific injuries anyway. The ease with which he did it was the worst thing for me. It was just like the way I would have squashed a pathetic little spider on my bedroom ceiling, but this was no tiny spider, this was a real living humans head. You could see as he had splattered it all across the floor and if you looked carefully then you could still just about make out the remains of his brain and his shattered skull. You could also clearly see on the video one of his eye balls bouncing out of its socket and rolling away across the gravel car park and down into the drainage system below. After hours of trying I finally fell into a deep, but restless sleep.

5:00

That must have been the worst night's sleep I have ever had in my life. All I had all night was nightmare after terrible nightmare. I had woken up in my pitch-black room and had been convinced there was an alien in the room with me. There were definite sounds of movement. These sounds had been coming from somewhere around my desk. I had just laid there in my bed shaking for what seemed like an eternity. What could I do if it was an alien. I reached under my bed and got my hover ball bat. I did not know if it was strong enough to kill the alien, but I had to try something. I was so scared my pulse must have been right through the roof. As I got to my feet I raised the bat above my head ready to bring it down on the alien or aliens. I quietly reached out with my other hand and switched on my bedroom light. When the room was illuminated I swung the bat towards the desk. The next thing I knew there was a loud meow and my poor cat went running out of the bedroom door looking even more scared than me. He must have been trying to get into the rats cage for a snack. After this I could not sleep any more so I started to plan my revenge. I gave my rats more food and water than usual just in case things went badly. They were both looking up at me as if they knew something was wrong. The cage was still open so I got them both out of their cage and put one on each of my shoulders. They always loved to sit on there and I did not know when or if they would ever be able to do it again. If I got caught by the aliens I could be thrown in prison or even worse still killed.

7:00

I prepared for the college early to get things sorted out, I needed to be there and ready before the rest of the other students arrived. On my wrist I had brought with me my computer watch as it had a built in modem for giving me access to the college computer systems from any part of the building. It had very little processing power in comparison to my home terminal as it was only had a 500ghz CPU in contrast to my 32thz system at home. It was quite out of date, but it would have to do as I needed so mething I could hide if I was confronted by any of the teachers. I also could not risk taking anything bigger into the college as it could have been spotted on the surveillance cameras if everything went wrong. I left the house and headed for the bus stop. The weather was much better than it had been the day before, the sun was out and there was just a couple of small clouds in the distance spoiling it from being an absolutely perfect morning. I wished that I could have just forgotten about the aliens and headed off to the beach, but there was no chance of that. I had a job to do and unfortunately no one else could do this for me. I had thought about going to the police for help, but I had heard so many rumours about how corrupt they had been since the aliens had arrived.

7:30

I arrived and used my computer to upload a virus to crash or override all the retinal scanners and cameras between the main entrance and the tower itself. I went as fast as I could because I knew it would not take them long to fix the problems my virus had caused. I went in the main entrance and turned right and headed down towards the science labs. I did not know how to build a bomb, but I did know what chemicals could be mixed to create highly flammable gases. I grabbed a few bottles of what I needed and moved towards the tower. When I arrived I pressed the button for the lift. When the doors opened I went in to it. I had used my bag to stop the doors from shutting and poured the first chemical all over the lift floor. I then attached the second and third bottles to the door so that when the doors shut the bottles would break and the chemicals would mix together. The final touch was a holographic generator with picture of one of the people from Megadeth I had scanned in. I am sure they would have approved of what I was using it for. From a distance it looked like a real person and it was even set up to move back and forward across the lift. The plan was set and now it was time for me to go up to the top floor of the tower. I used the hidden door in the computer room on floor 17 and climbed the hidden staircase, I then peered round the corner into the main corridor. The androids were at the other end by the lift doors protecting the only official entrance. I used my computer to call for the lift and as soon as the lift started to move the robots spun round with their guns pointed at the door as no aliens were due to be in the tower this early in the morning. I moved into the corridor to get a better look as the doors opened. The chemicals had mixed and there was a large amount green smoke coming out of the lift. As soon as they had seen the holographic human they had opened fire on it. The explosion was much bigger than I had been expecting. The androids flew apart and one of the spikes from their armour came flying in my direction. I moved as fast as I could, but it was not fast enough. The metal spike speared me straight through my left leg. The pain was excruciating and I fell to the floor screaming. The lights had gone off and I was laying there in the dark with blood pouring out of my knee. I could still hear one of the androids moving. It sounded badly damaged, but it was definitely still functioning.

7:45

The sirens had sounded and on the walls spinning yellow emergency lights came on. The android was looking straight at me. The damage was incredible. Not just to the androids, but the whole corridor had been totally devastated. Roof panels were dangling down and sparks were coming from what was left of the ceiling lights. The remaining android would be no threat to me as it was just a wrecked mess. got up and walked over to have a closer look at it. It had looked kind of pathetic to me. It was just lying on the marble tiled floor looking up at me like the student in the corridor that had been killed. I wanted to finish it off like that teacher had, but I almost felt sorry for it. That may sound strange, but it was only doing its job and now it looked beyond repair. With how uncaring the aliens were they would probably just kill it. It was not just a machine it was a thinking living life form. I had never really felt this way towards an android before. I had always just ignored them as being machines, but this one had seemed different. I could see some kind of intelligence deep in its human looking eyes. I wondered what had made these 4000 models so special. The android had clearly been in pain. I had studied cybernetics at my last college for almost a year and I could see that the main fiber op cortex had been severed. I could not believe what I was thinking. I went over and started trying to reconnect those cables. The lift was destroyed so reinforcements would take a while to get up all those stairs. I managed to get the android out of pain and to give it some of its mobility back. It just sat there on the floor looking at me. Could it understand what I had done for it or was it just waiting for an opportunity to strike back at me. Just then the door behind me flew open and one of the aliens came running in. It was the teacher from my Amygee's class, the one that had killed that student in the corridor. His body started to expand to full size and I was sure that I was going to die, but just then the badly damaged android I had been helping raised his arm and fired a green bolt of pure plasma energy at the alien from its hand. The alien had screamed and then vanished in a flash of blue light. Even after all my work to repair it, the android must have known that it would be destroyed for what it had done to one of its masters and so it had moved towards the window. I had tried to stop it, but it went straight through and fell down to the earth so far below. I could see that it had blocked the many doors and this had bought me some more time. While standing there I could see that the sky was now totally clear. I was definitely beginning to regret not bunking off and going to the beach after all. I could not see a way of getting back to my normal life as I had gone too far now to turn back. I still could not believe what the android had done for me. A few minutes ago it would have killed me without thinking and then it had saved my life and killed itself to help protect me.

7:55

I went into the first room and it was just a room full of filing cabinets. The second and third were the same and I was beginning to think that it might have all been for nothing. When I entered the next room the sight before me was incredible. It was a large dark room filled with rows of glass cylinders. The only light was a bright green glow coming from within these strange cylinders. They contained more androids in various states of construction. When I looked closer and found the reason for the behaviour of the android. The brains that had been implanted in these machines were those of human origin. They had been very severely modified to interface with the androids hardware, but they were most definitely human. There was only one large control panel for the whole room. I could have used it if there had been more time to work out the Amygees instructions, but I had to move fast. I went back to the corridor and picked up a gun from the remaining very dead looking android. As I started to walk away I heard it move and I span round as fast as I could and shot it in the head. I know the other android had helped me, but I was not willing to take the chance of this one not being the same. I returned to the room and pointed the gun at the control panel. I was wondering who these brains had belonged to and then remembered what my tutor had said about all the missing students that had been vanishing over the last few years. I switched the laser based weapon onto its highest setting and then fired one shot at the center of the computer terminal. It had exploded in a giant shower of pieces of metal, sparks and flames. This time I had made sure I was hiding safely behind one of the cylinders and did not get hit by any of the many pieces of metal that flew all over the room. The lights within the cylinders changed from bright green to a deep blood red and the brains had seemed to start to disintegrate almost immediately.

8:00

My job was not done yet, so I slowly limped to the next room, the bleeding had been getting worse and my head was starting to feel like I had just got off a huge roller coaster. I had a good idea what was in this room as I had spotted the large satellite uplink dish on the roof above it. I was definitely not disappointed. The room had one of the biggest computers I had ever seen and when I approached it the computer and all of its many displays came on automatically. From the displays came symbols that I recognized from the worlds many television networks. It seemed as if they had been hacking into the television networks and using subliminal messages to control the thoughts of millions of people and make us more passive towards them. From the look of the computers they had only recently started the hidden messages so hopefully it was not too late to tell the world the real truth about them. This computer seemed to be linked into over four hundred channels. I hoped this would be enough and not too many people would be watching the other sides as this was only about a quarter of the worlds channels. I accessed the computer and went into the security video files on the mainframe again and set them to run in a continuous loop. My work was almost over and so I hit the override button and sent the film of the students being murdered to the screens of millions of people all over the world. I ripped the interface out of the wall and smashed it. Without this they could not stop the transmissions without shutting down all of the television networks.

8:05

I made my way back out to the stairs. The bleeding had still been getting much worse at this point and I did not know how much longer I could last. I had managed to get about a quarter of the way down all those stairs when four alien guards had confronted me. Their bodies were fully expanded and I knew I was in big trouble. I did not care as I had sent the truth to the world. The rebellion against the aliens would start very quickly now. I did not know if this was a battle we would be able to win, but I knew that we would triumph or die trying. I shot the first alien in the chest and he vaporized in another blue flash just like the other one. The second was much too fast for me and he knocked me to the floor. The gun went sliding off down the corridor out of my reach. I kicked him in the groin in he went back against the glass window and went straight through it. He must have fallen about 15 floors and it took time before I heard that splat of his body smashing in to the floor. I looked up at the two remaining aliens standing over me and I started to smile at them. I had just remembered a line from a film that my granddad had told me about, it was 'You come from nothing, you go back to nothing, so what have you lost, nothing!'. Life had never seemed that simple before, but maybe now I could see that it was. I knew that I was going to die, but at least it was for a good reason. I never had liked the idea of dying in my sleep at the ripe old age of 120. This was much better as I had done something useful with my life and I knew that I would at least die with honour.

8:15

I slowly closed my eyes and waited for the cold blackness of death to take me away from all the horror's of this place and the evil it contained.

The End