Descendants of a great king will rise from an uncivilized world and destroy the Kulusks. Whether prophecy or folklore, it compels Kie Ritchen, the Kulusk Maxum to release the deadly Terinolice Virus onto Millmum Capitol Station.
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Descendants of a great king will rise from an uncivilized world and destroy the Kulusks. Whether prophecy or folklore, it compels Kie Ritchen, the Kulusk Maxum to release the deadly Terinolice Virus onto Millmum Capitol Station. The Osguards and all of Millmum Capitol Station are dying. Their only hope is Osguard 55, Juanita Genesis-Clark. She must leave her family on Earth and travel across the galaxy to get the one man who has the cure for the virus. Just one catch, he's on Kulusk. To further complicate matters, a deadly secret, born on Earth during the turn of the 20th Century, forces Juanita to take sides in a Kulusk civil war in order to save the legitimate heir to the Kulusk throne. Meanwhile on Earth, USSTAP's Stelana Rican and FBI Special Agent Anthony Musoto must track down the killer of Juanita's 5-year old cousin, unaware of the biological terror playing out in the heavens above them.
Prologue—The Night Prior
The mugginess blanketed the city, trapping the heat and humidity like a body bag on this hot summer night. It was almost midnight. And in the distance on Texas Street in Shreveport Louisiana, where a row of one room nightclubs thrive, the blaring of different music and sounds wafted through the air in a strange cacophony.
The still night air cracked with gunshots. Two nine millimeter bullets rang in the air followed a split second later by three thirty-eight caliber rounds. Then the rattle of a semi-automatic pistol, spurting out its deadly load, cut through the dark.
Nelson Ford cowered against the bridge pillar in the midst of the city’s Festival Center Plaza. Sweat glistened from his baldhead. Nelson shot a quick glance over to the next pillar. There he saw his friend, John Carter, better known as J.C., returning fire with his own nine millimeter. Under his breath, Nelson cursed J.C. for getting him into this situation. What was he thinking? What the hell did he do to deserve this? Just then, a bullet cracked the white pillar inches above his head. Nelson ducked and hugged the pillar closer, praying for a way out.
“J.C.” a voice called from the other side of the plaza. “You might as well put the gun down and come on out.”
“Why?” J.C. yelled. “I ain’t going out like that!”
“Come on man! My bad…I thought you were trying to rip us off.” The voice explained from the shadows.
“No, man. I was being righteous with you. You assholes are trying to rip us off. It ain’t going down like that,” yelled J.C.
“Oh yes it is!” a different voice yelled from the shadows. “You might as well kiss your ass good-bye…because you aren’t getting out of here alive.”
“Neither are you,” J.C. screamed.
Nelson’s face dropped with surprise. He’d never seen this side of J.C. He always thought of J.C. as a wannabe gang-banger. He never knew he had the die hard core to his personality. In fact, he always considered J.C. a joke, a clown—sort of a punk. Now J.C. was talking tough, and he had a gun to back it up.
Nelson shook his head in disbelief. He didn’t know whether he was scared of dying, or just angry with J.C. for putting him in this situation. He looked over at J.C. with angst. He wanted to beat his brains in. Right now, he had to get out of here. He turned and looked behind him. There was a short open area before reaching the abandoned train station. If he could get to the building, it could be used for cover. However, the area was in full view of the Dallas boys chasing them. They couldn’t make it before getting shot in the back. Nonetheless, it was their only chance.
“J.C.?” Nelson whispered. J.C. shot a glance at Nelson. Nelson pointed toward the abandoned building. J.C. nodded. Then J.C. jumped from behind his pillar, with his gun pointing into the shadows where the voices originated. And with a tremendous yell, he squeezed the trigger, spitting out a barrage of bullets into the darkness.
Click…click…click. J.C.’s gun clip went dry. J.C. turned toward Nelson, “Run!” he screamed.
Nelson’s heart jumped as his adrenalin pushed into his muscles. He bolted down the dark path toward the left, putting the old train station between him and his assailants. He heard J.C. behind him. With each strike of his foot against the pavement, he became angrier and angrier. He wanted to trip J.C. and let the Dallas boys have him. However, he knew any energy used to do anything but run away would be a waste and may cost him his life. So he ran, having some solace at the sounds of J.C.’s footsteps behind him. They reached the end of the old train station and ran down the park stairs toward the lower parking lot.
Just as Nelson thought they weren’t being followed anymore, a bullet clanged against the metal railing; close enough for him to feel the heat from its friction. He jumped the rest of the stairs, crawled to the next flight and slid down the stairs on his belly. At the bottom of the stairs was the wide and open lower parking lot—nothing he could use for cover. Fright gripped his soul. Panic grabbed his gut. He whimpered as he looked back.
J.C. came crashing into his legs as he slid on his stomach down the stairs. Both crumbled to the ground and against the wall leading to the restroom. Nelson shook J.C. off of him and crawled down the short corridor to the bathroom doors. He tugged at the doors to the men’s room. The metal lock of the doors clanged but they did not open. Nelson pounded on the doors with his fist in frustration, and then he kicked it. The kick echoed in the stone hall.
“Shit!” Nelson sighed. He looked up and saw J.C.’s shadow. “What the hell are you doing?” he whispered.
“Shut the hell up!” J.C. whispered pointing above him.
The sound of footsteps coming down the stone stairs echoed in the hallway. There was just one of them. Originally there were three. That was some good news, Nelson thought. Nelson also knew the man only had to turn and peer down the hallway and they would be dead. Nelson prayed for it to be too dark for him to make them out in the shadows.
Then he saw the man. He stood about six feet tall, skinny and dressed in sweat pants and a Los Angeles Lakers basketball jersey. It was too dark for Nelson to distinguish any features, or read the number on the shirt. Nelson crept against the wall, hoping to blend his shadow into the wall.
The man turned, as if he heard Nelson move. He pointed his gun into the hallway and fired three quick rounds. The bullets hit the metal door, and ricocheted against the stoned walls. The man lowered the gun, stretching his neck into the hallway.
On the far side of the parking lot, a scream bellowed through the air. The man spun toward the scream. There were more nightclubs on the other side of the parking lot and the noise started to echo into the lot. However, the man didn’t know that, he thought his prey had somehow got to the other side. He dashed out of sight and ran across the parking lot.
Nelson counted to two hundred while still gripping the wall. He had pushed his back so much into the natural stone wall, his skin cracked and blood began to run. He dared not move for he did not know if the man was gone, or waiting for any movement in the dark to single him out of the darkness.
In the distance, Nelson could hear the sirens blaring, indicating the cops were nearby. He had to leave now. He knew he couldn’t let the police catch him—not now—not ever.
“J.C.?” Nelson called. Nothing… “J.C.?” he called again. Still nothing. Nelson took a deep breath and blew it out. “J.C., where the fuck are you?” Nelson listened, trying to filter out the noise floating on the still warm midnight summer air, coming from the other side of the parking lot. He heard a slight moan this time, the moan of death bestowing its unwelcome visit. Then he heard a thud, like a body crashing to the ground.
J.C. had fallen; face first, onto the cement floor. Nelson released the wall and rushed to the sound. He groped in the darkness until he felt J.C. His hand plopped into a sticky warm liquid in the middle of J.C.’s chest. He pulled his hand back and wiped it on his shirt. It was blood. He couldn’t see it, but he knew it. J.C. had been hit by one of those ricocheting bullets.
Once again panic clutched his stomach. The sour taste of fright occupied his mouth. He wanted to scream, but he didn’t. He sighed. He knew J.C. was dead, or at least he wanted him to be dead. Because if he wasn’t dead, he wasn’t going to carry him out of there. He did not need that type of baggage as he tried to escape. The sirens were getting louder in the distance. He knew his time was limited. He had to leave now.
Nelson emerged from the hallway and ran up the stairs, reversing his route. He knew the one guy was behind him and he hoped the sirens had scared the others off. He pushed his body as he flew down the alley and past the bridge pillars. He stopped in his tracks as he saw them at his feet.
The other two men lay on the ground in a pool of their own blood. He guessed J.C. must have hit them when he did his last barrage of gunfire. Finally, he thought. J.C. did something right. Nelson booted both men in the head several times, releasing his frustration, fright and anger with each kick.
The sirens wailed closer and closer, piercing his reality. He had to get moving. He had to run. The red and blue lights now framed the night sky around the Festival Plaza, bouncing off of buildings like glowing neon signs. Nelson estimated three police cars were waiting on the street above. He knew he couldn’t go that way. He thought of going back the way he came. Yet, he was unsure if the last killer had left.
Nelson felt desperation tingle his body. The police lights and sirens were like an invisible noose around his neck. He swallowed hard and shook his head. He tried to breathe, but the air caught in his throat. He coughed a dry hacking cough. Nervousness now ruled his actions. He would be damned if he went back to jail; especially for some bullshit J.C. cooked up. One idea consumed him—escape.
He was running on automatic, no thought process involved. He turned to the far wall separating the area from the train tracks below. It was a long drop on the other side of the wall, but he had to do it. He pushed fear from his mind and sprinted toward the wall. He jumped, pulled himself over the wall and dropped into the night on the other side, disappearing from sight and from the cops. Nelson had escaped with his life—for now!