Chapter 16: The Earth Dome

With just a few minutes of driving, they soon reached a dome that looked like a stadium for a baseball game. Kenji glanced at the group saying, “That’s where my faction lives.”

Eve stared at the stadium and then smiled saying, “I recognize that place. One of the professors at my institution told me about this place in Genome called The Earth Dome, a sport center for great athletes.”

“That’s the place.”

Kale glanced at the dome as well and asked, “So that place was turned into your headquarters?”

Kenji nodded.

“I know it’s kind of sad, especially with its history in Genome as the greatest gathering of sport legends, but it was the best place to take shelter…especially when the outbreak first happened.”

Eve noticed that Kenji clenched his fists on the wheel and felt that just maybe he had a strong connection with the place before the outbreak happened. Eve placed a hand on his shoulder making Kenji look at her. Eve smiled warmly and asked, “When there is time can you tell us more about the stadium before the outbreak?” Kenji smiled and nodded.

Kenji reached out to Eve’s hand, but Eve’s hand suddenly was removed from his shoulder and saw that Eve’s wrist was being held by Adler. Adler smiled at Kenji saying, “I need to speak with Eve before we reach your base.” Kenji nodded and watched as Adler dragged Eve to the back of the bus.

Eve glanced at Adler asking, “Is something wrong?” Adler sighed.

“I don’t know if you have noticed, but that Kenji guy seems interested in you.”

“Interested?”

“All right, I know you are twelve, but you are a growing girl and as a growing girl you may attract certain men.”

“Attract?”

“…Please don’t tell me I have to give you the flowers and the bees talk?”

“Huh?”

Adler sighed realizing that Eve was indeed very innocent to the point that she wasn’t aware of female and male interactions in the sexual way. Adler glanced at the others hoping that the others would be able to explain to Eve, but they all gave him a look that seemed to say, “You dug your own grave.”

Adler groaned and looked at Eve, who looked at him with a puzzled look.

“I’ll explain everything later, but for now, try to keep your interaction with Kenji to a minimum.”

Eve nodded.

Eve headed back to her seat, but stole a glance at Kenji wondering why Adler wanted her to be wary of Kenji.

They soon drove through an opened gate with people wearing casual clothes. The moment the bus was all the way through, the gate was closed behind them in a quick haste. The bus drove a few more miles until it reached the entrance of the dome. Kenji shut the bus engine off and then opened the bus door.

“This is where we get off.”

Kenji was the first to step out and then urged the others to follow. The others began to leave the bus one by one. Eve was getting up from her seat, but suddenly felt someone grab the sleeve of her shirt. She looked down and saw that it was Tanpopo with a big smile on her face.

“Let’s go, let’s go,” urged Tanpopo excitedly. Eve nodded with a smile and allowed Tanpopo to lead her off the bus.

The moment her feet touched the ground, Tanpopo giggled and stated, “Let’s see Theo together and then I want to show you my room.” Eve could hear the excitement in Tanpopo’s voice and nodded with a giggle.

Kenji chuckled and stated, “Just like Tanpopo said, we have to go see Theo. He should be in the stadium main office.” They all nodded, but were still wary of their surroundings.

As they walked, David began to notice that the halls were well polished like the apocalypse had never arrived, but then also noticed the stadium map with multiple writings on it like it had been adjusted to accommodate the changes of the stadium.

“David?”

David glanced at Ivan.

“Do you really think we should trust them?”

“I don’t know yet, but Eve doesn’t trust them yet and I trust her judgment.”

Ivan nodded and then glanced at Eve as she listened to Tanpopo chatter nonstop about a topic he wasn’t aware of.

“Eve says she doesn’t trust them, but she sure seems to be getting close to that kid.”

David nodded with a small smile.

“If you think about it, Eve has been surrounded by us guys for a while, so her talking with a girl must be a nice change for her.”

“I guess she does need some girlfriends.”

David and Ivan chuckled.

They soon reached a door with gold plating. Kenji looked at the others and stated, “Theo should be through this door.” They nodded and watched Kenji knock on the door.

“Hey Kenji,” they heard a voice say through the door.

Kenji chuckled saying, “I thought I said not to read my mind without warning.”

“It just happened, so are you going to let those guys in, so I can see them or not.”

Kenji rolled his eyes and then opened the door.

It revealed an office room that was tidied up to the point it seemed like it was never dirty. At the silver desk with papers stacked neatly on the surface was a man who seemed to be around his twenties. He had short black hair that was combed back. He wore a short sleeved plain white shirt and blue jeans with white tennis shoes. His eyes were sky blue and had no scars on his skin. He seemed to be a well-mannered man. This man was Theo, the leader of the faction in the stadium and a User.

They all entered the one and stood before Theo, who placed his pen down as he stood up from his desk. Theo smiled at the group and then said, “Welcome to my faction.”

David stood before the group and asked, “So you are Theo, a User?” Theo nodded and stated, “I see you guys are aware of Users. I have the power to read minds and I can see that Kenji explained about the other factions before you got here.”

“If you can read minds, do you know our secrets?”

“I’m not that nosy, but I do know your names, David.”

David visibly flinched. Theo then looked at the others and began to say their names one by one, but when he reached Eve he paused and smiled at her.

“I would like to hear your name from your lips though.”

Eve nodded and muttered her name.

“Eve, a pretty name.”

Theo looked away from Eve making her sigh in relief and then looked at all of them.

“Just as Kenji mentioned, you will meet with the other factions’ leaders tonight to keep the peace of the town, but for now, please have something to eat and rest until then. Wouldn’t want you guys to starve.”

They nodded and were led out of the room by Tanpopo, who excitedly dragged Eve out of the room.

“We’ll call you by the speakers when it is time to go,” informed Kenji. They nodded again and were soon out of sight.

When they were out of the room, Theo frowned and looked at Kenji, who remained in the room, stating, “Kenji, that girl Eve was strange.”

“So you noticed too?”

Theo nodded and stated, “I could read everyone’s minds, except for that girl’s.”

“You couldn’t read her mind?”

“I tried to read it, but it was like a wall was there. Did she say she was a User?”

“No. The only User in that group is Chronos or at least that’s what they say and Tanpopo doesn’t seem to know Eve either, but she is oddly attached to her.”

“I noticed. I read Tanpopo’s mind and she feels like a sister connection with Eve.”

“Sister…well Tanpopo has been quite lonely lately.”

Theo rubbed his chin in thought and then looked at Kenji seriously.

“Keep a close eye on her, especially during the meeting with the other faction leaders. If Eve is a User, we have to keep her in our faction.”

Kenji nodded and then left the room.

Theo sighed and muttered, “Even Kenji feels a connection to that girl. Who is she?”

Area 40 Facility

Staff: 90 (Dead) 0 (Alive)

Users: 8 (Alive) 8 (Dead) 29 (Unknown)

Genome Detention Center

Staff: 90 (Dead?) 0 (Alive)

Prisoners: 5 (Alive) 50 (Dead?)

School

Staff: 50 (Dead) 0 (Alive)

Students: 2 (Alive) 140 (Dead)

World

About 50,000,000,000 (dead) others (Unknown)

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