Chapter Three of Lost & Found. Brent finally meets Sebastian, his mysterious contact.
"Hello, Brent," Sebastian said. His teeth were perfectly straight and very white. Like a politicians'. I couldn't help but feel uneasy. He was far too suave for my liking. He ran his hands through his perfectly shaped hair and smiled at me. He stretched out his hand and I hesitantly took it.
"Sebastian," I said, the unease creeping into my voice.
"Nice to finally get a chance to talk to you," he smiled that same smile and I bit the inside of my lip, suddenly feeling uneasy.
"What do you want? How do you know I have more 'to offer?'" I said, getting right to the point.
"All will be revealed in time."
"Bullshit. You don't even know what you're talking about, do you?" My arm tensed and my fingers balled up to form a fist.
"I know that you're failing classes that last year you exceeded at. I know that you're unhappy with Jake for abandoning you and that you resent Logan. You feel like a failure as a big brother and that you're a burden to your parents. Is that about right?" he smirked and I had to resist the urge to punch his perfect teeth in.
"So you read my blog. Big fucking deal."
"How would you like another job?"
I looked around, trying to find any hidden cameras or listening devices before turning back to him, an eyebrow raised.
"Is this a joke? What, you think that because you're the student body president you're fucking perfect and can save mine, and everyone's lives? This is my life and not yours. Get your head out of your ass. You can't help me."
"That's the bitterness talking. What happened to the Brent that fought against Mr. Arnold? What happened to the action-hero type fox of last year? What changed?"
I rushed at him, pushing him against the wall and screamed at him.
"Fuck you, you fucking pussy! You think you're so perfect? You think that you're just amazing, don't you? Well get this through your thick skull you pretentious douchebag... You're an asshole and I hope you choke on your own dick!"
Sebastian didn't back down. He just laughed. "Choke on my own dick, that's funny. Listen, you need help. I can provide that. I can help all your dreams come true. I can get you your Doomsday back."
My ears dropped a little and I let him go, taking a step back.
He opened my locker and handed me the envelope from earlier.
"Go to the address written inside. You have remarkable gifts and you need to put them to good use. You can help make the world a better place," Sebastian said.
"What do I do with this?"
Sebastian leaned forward and planted a kiss on my cheek which made both cheeks flush and my ears press back to my head.
"You'll see. And for the record, you're really cute." With that, he walked away. I couldn't help but notice his hips sway a little in those tight jeans and his ass looke-
I turned away and hoped no one saw me checking him out. I'm not gay, I swear.
* * *
I drove to the outskirts of town after school, heading to the address that was written in the note. This was part of the town that had belonged to the old Purist camp before they were outlawed in a controversial Supreme Court ruling. A few people still lived there but the camp had stopped being a small subdivision and became a bit of a shanty town for those that still lived in their old ways. I felt very nervous to be in that position, exposed to possible attacks like I was.
I had to ask myself two important questions: one, how much did I want a new job and two, how much could I trust Sebastian?
I'd have to find out sooner or later.
The address in the note led to a warehouse that was once used for a furniture place that went belly up when the massive Ikea went in. Giant chains came in one by one and closed up any stores not owned by corporate conglomerates. I couldn't help but hate Ikea because I'd heard stories from a couple of buddies who'd worked there about abuse from the managers.
Pulling the car up to the side of the building, I parked and turned off the engine. Biting my lip, I pulled a small .45 out of the glove compartment. I'd had threats against my life before, thanks to Arnold's followers being mad at me for exposing his hypocrisy. I put it in the back of my pants and pulled my coat over it.
The cold winter air met my warm breath and created the fog as I exhaled. The sky was dark with lots of cloud cover and though the ground was dry now, I was expecting a snow storm any minute now. We were due for one anyway. March always meant lots of snow.
I got to the warehouse door and knocked three times.
The door opened and I looked down at a small ferret that grabbed the collar of my shirt and pulled me inside before closing the door behind me-
"Watch it!" I cried, almost losing my balance and falling down a flight of stairs.
The ferret was dressed in a suit that fit him well--very well. It had to have been tailor-made. On the lapel was a small triangular pin of lips sewn shut with a pair of scissors cutting through the stitches. It immediately struck me as odd. The ferret had the classic black mask around the eyes. His right ear had a piece missing and there was a scar going from the corner of his top lip to his chin. His hair was done up in a nice just-got-out-of-bed look but he probably put tons of effort into it.
His eyes met mine and he glared at me.
"Who the fuck are you?"
"I'm... I'm Brent... Uh- Brent Phillips," I managed.
The ferret backed away a little and offered his hand. "Sorry... Just a little surprised. You're actually a big inspiration to everyone here. The name's Geoff," the small ferret suddenly seemed a lot younger than I first thought he was. He might've been around my age for all I knew.
"With a Jay or a Gee?" I asked, shaking his hand with a smirk.
I smiled at him for a moment before biting my lip. "So, err, what is this place?"
"This place is where real news is made," Geoff said, his dark eyes lighting up.
"W-what?" I said, following him as he walked down the darkened flight of stairs. They were steep and I kept thinking I was going to fall down onto Geoff. At the bottom of the stairs was a steel door with a keypad on the handle. Geoff keyed in the numbers and a green light emanated from a light bulb to the right of the door. Geoff opened the door and looked back at me, smirking ever so slightly.
"You're gonna enjoy this, Brent," he said simply before opening the door.
A bright white light filled my eyes as they took their time adjusting to the sudden contrast in lighting. Then, I saw shapes slowly solidify until a whole office was bustling around me, people running about their business, yammering and pointing at their screens.
"Everyone! Can I have your attention, please?" Geoff called. There was no response in the crowd. Geoff blushed slightly and bit his lip, taking a glance at me, obviously feeling very self-conscious. "Can I have your attention?!" His voice was a little more direct with just a hint of desperation in it. "This is Brent Phillips!" he cried one last time.
Then, like a wave, a whisper went out until the whole room was silent and still with all eyes on me. My ears flattened against my head as I flushed. Raising my paw, I gave a slight wave before people started clapping and cheering, everyone calling my name. I tried to turn and get away from the embarrassment of all those eyes on me; but Geoff grabbed my hand and held it tightly in his, not letting me leave his side. I found it somewhat odd but he must have wanted to stick around so I let him hold my paw. I figured, what's the worst it could do?
"Brent Phillips," Sebastian said, coming up to me from the crowd. He was dressed in a nice suit that was fitted to his figure perfectly. As I looked around, I noticed almost everyone was in a suit that fit them perfectly. Too perfectly. And they all had the familiar pin that I saw on Geoff. Sebastian took my hand and pulled me away from Geoff, taking me into the middle of the crowd. Then, whispering into my ear, he said something very peculiar.
"Welcome to The Pipeline."