Karen jerked upright in the bed, already in motion before she realized that she was awake. She was out the door and on her bike so fast that she didn’t even have time to register that she was still in her pajamas and had no shoes on. All she knew was that her brain was screaming at her, “THEY’RE COMING!”
Karen had to get to a nexxus. If she didn’t she’d be dead. She didn’t know how she knew that. Neither did she question it. She’d simply pedaled as fast she could to the Stones and launched herself off the bike. She’d huddled in the center feeling the fear, the hunters, the pain, until she’d passed out. She awakened hours later.
And she knew the world had changed. And so had she. She could hear them all, babbling in her mind, feel their fear and uncertainty. Maddening. It would take work to shut out all the voices… and work to avoid those… ‘other’ things that her newly awakened senses had revealed to her.
Karen was exhausted. It had been nearly two weeks since Dark Day and she’d learned a lot. One, and this was the biggest, the world had changed. People knew it too. Knew where they kept their knowledge of ghosts and monsters and other things they’d rather not think about.
Then, there was the other biggest change: she’d changed. Now, she could read minds, now she could read aura’s, even her own and hers had a golden sparkle. She’d wondered if she could manipulate it. With practice and concentration one night, she learned that she could when she altered it to a darker, orange hue.
Of course, auras revealed yet another thing that had changed:
There were people out there with auras that weren’t like anyone else’s, weren’t like anything she’d ever read about. On the rare occasions that they had spotted her, she’d gotten a sort of odd… ‘spider-sense’… that they were dangerous and would kill her of they could. She’d never questioned the feeling, never tempted fate. She’d always high-tailed it out of any area where she had that feeling.
There was a close call, when she’d felt the danger while she was out biking and thought she was alone. She’d learned that they could track her by her aura. The tingling in he rmind that she now associated with incoming danger. She had stopped and calmed herself, then took a moment to open her sight and she found it, an odd… ‘in-human’ aura in the shadows in the wood-line. She still couldn’t see it with her normal sight, but the aura glowed.
She’d turned her bike around and high-tailed it back to the nearest crowd. It had followed her, however. Even in a crowd it seemed like it was making a bee-line towards her. Nearly frantic, she suddenly had an epiphany: it was tracking her the same way she was tracking it, through her aura! She’d darted around a building and seen a group of bikers out on a day trip and focused, changing her aura. She’d stood, scared stiff in the line with the other bikers and had watched as whatever that thing was had walked by, looking for all the world like a very pregnant young woman out for a hike.
She realized that if she was being actively hunted, she would have to explore her abilities, find out what else she could do. Mostly those things that she felt around the edges, now fully realized… ‘psychic’ abilities. Reading minds, seeing auras, feeling the emotions of others. Augury and divination. She had several abilities, but she also found she had no offensive or defensive capabilities.
Great, the only thing I can do is hide. And I won’t even be able to do that if they catch me first.