You probably wouldn't believe me, you might even think I am crazy, but I see things. See it all started when I was a kid, what others would see as shadows I would see as something real. Think of it like a monsters natural camouflage, anyone who has a strong connection to what we would call The Fade, only they can see the real beasties.
"Hey Watcher, you know where we're going tonight?" Jim Hopkins asked, Jim was the guy who found me when my ability came out. He was a man in his mid thirties when he first found me at the age of ten, now I am twenty and he's hitting that old age of forty. "Come on Hopper I know you aren't a spring chicken but Quick-Draw said we will be heading to that school on 12th St." I replied.
Everyone had code-names, mine being Watcher since I was good at keeping an eye out. Among other things.
Hopper was getting old but between a fight with him and a semi I would choose him, the man was built like a tank and probably ate them for breakfast.
"Don't start with me, it's gonna be a long day." The old man replied, our division focused on finding monsters who hurt or injure humans, sometimes you would rather not want to know what goes bump in the night.
Hopper and myself got into an old black van, generic I know but it keeps prying eyes off of us. Despite the government knowing about us the police and military tended to be kept in the dark, leaving us as ordinary citizens. Meaning if we got caught doing something our jobs asked us to do we could get into some serious hot water.
Me and Hopper drove down 11th St to get to 12th, Sin City was one big city and with all its denizens we could only hope to not get thrust into a bad jam.
"Quick-Draw specified this bogey as a Class 5 Monster, I tell ya they do not pay me enough for this." Hopper responded, a Class 5 was the mid point meaning while we weren't going to have a massive fight on our hands we sure weren't going to have it easy. "Does he want us to go in guns blazing or try and do an exorcism?" I asked, the answer took some time but once Hopper spoke I understood. "Guns blazing, this bogey has already killed three students, the P.I.D. is trying to keep this quiet but there is only so many dead bodies we can take away before people start asking questions." He said and I could only nod in agreement.
We parked outside of the school, down in the lower left part of the parking lot, a bit away from the school but for a good reason. Hopper exited the van then walked around to the back, opening the doors to reveal a long and wide black storage box. "This ones an animal bogey, he is gonna be swift and efficient but we can't draw too much attention. The P.I.D. has issued a quarantine around the school to keep people at bay but we are still going to have to be quiet." He said lightly as he took his Glock out from his holster, screwing on a silencer before motioning for me to do the same.
"Remember kid, first rule of bogey hunting: Only be seen once their dead." Hopper said, man was tough and wise. After all he was the top worker there at the P.I.D. for a reason.
We entered the school from the front entrance, the P.I.D. had put in a non-lethal gas in order to clear the building so that was the first horrid thing that I could smell, the second was the blood and decaying corpses.
"They set up a perimeter to keep him in here, all we have to do is hunt it down." Hopper said before he began to lead the way, the halls dark and empty just like the minds of the students that walked down them. "We're fresh meat to him so he should come to us right?" I asked, I have been trained for ten years but not amount of experience would prepare you for everything. "I wouldn't doubt he knows we are here, but he is going to be cautious till he knows he can take us." Hopper responded before he put his finger over his mouth and shushed me.
Our footsteps near silent, our breathing just the same as we ventured down. The retched stench made me want to hurl, it smelt like the bodies were weeks old though I knew this wasn't the case.
It was all too quiet, I could fight any class of monster and not be frightened but it was the silence that sent shivers down my spine.
Hopper led the way a bit more before he suddenly stopped, "I think I saw it..." He whispered to me, the giant of a man motioned to me to lower ourselves down, a better sneaking position as well. We crept down the long hallway before coming to a four lane hall, Hopper peaked around the corner. It was far too quiet, but the sudden shout from Hopper made me jump. I had not even a second to react before I saw a shadow grab the giant old man and run off into the darkness, taking my gun off safety I rushed after them, a cold sweat hitting my brow as I tried to help my partner. Rushing down the halls I was brought to another four way lane hall.
"HOPPER!" I cried out, looking down every direction trying to find any glimmer or movement that I could see to find my partner. I heard footsteps rushing towards me from my rear and with a sudden turn I went to encounter my charging adversary, my legs shook lightly and in my mind I felt like this could be it. I hesitated, I couldn't pull the trigger. No other mission had been like this, the quiet and intense foreboding that a monster hunt could bring had never felt this severe. I closed my eyes and waited for the worst to occur, but when grabbed it was not by the sharp claws of a monster but the hard and coarse hands of my partner. "We have to go, now!" He shouted as he practically dragged me along the floor.
I could not see much but the faint outline of the walls at this point, but what I could feel was a warm liquid rushing down the back of my neck. Once Hopper had set me down we both were hiding behind a row of desks, Hopper trying to regain control of his breathing.
Once Hopper had calmed himself the dreaded quiet had returned, but then I broke that silence. "Hopper what is this?" I whispered to him, he had something warm and wet on his skin. He did not respond, just for the sake of wanting to make sure he was okay I turned on the light from my phone, when I had finally learned what that warm liquid was I dropped my phone in fear. Hopper had the skin on his chest torn off, when the light was on I could see his ribs, his organs and the blood was dripping. "Kid, this bogey, it ain't no Class 5." Hopper said with such ragged breathing, it sounded like his vocal cords or worse his throat was torn. "W-what do you mean?" I asked in return, the fear in my voice couldn't be more obvious if you had tossed it in a jar and smashed it on someones head.
"This, this is a Class X bogey.." He stated, with those few words all the blood that had remained in my face drained to the point I felt faint. "Quick-Draw lied to us kid, I hate to say it but, I had the feeling this wasn't no normal mission." He said lightly as he collapsed against the wall. "Hopper!" I called out, taking off my shirt and pressing it against the open wound, I knew full well there was not going to be any good in it but for his sake I tried anyways.
Hopper grabbed my hand, squeezing it firmly as he spoke his final words. "Run kid, that bastard Marcus has double crossed us." He said as he coughed out a pool of blood, the tears in my eyes welling up. "I remember when I first met you, you were a right idiot. But now, you've became a damn good man." He said with sorrow in his voice, whether from dying or his loss of myself in his life it didn't matter. The tears fell anyways.
You need to run kid, go, run and don't look back. If he finds out you didn't die here he will try again, so run and don't look back!" Hopper said smacking me across the face as he did so, I had began to hear the sounds of claws scratching across the floor and knew the monster was coming. "Take this, I will try and buy you some time." The old man said as he handed me his gun, his badge, a photo of his family and the keys to the van. With a loud roar the old man got up, fighting every pain he had in his body just to save me. "I may not have been able to save my family, but I will save you." He said lightly as he began to limp away. I couldn't say a word, I could only cry. A big hero I was, my partner giving his life to save my own and I couldn't say a damn thing. I punched the ground once, twice, three times. I punched it till my knuckles bled and the bones peeked out. But I couldn't fail Hopper, I took his goodbye gift and began to run towards the exit.
"You want some fresh meat you bogey bastard!? Then come get some!" I could hear Hopper yell, taunting the monster to keep him away from me, the tears dropped faster then I could run. The last thing I could hear before I escaped was the sounds of Hopper screaming, the sounds of tearing flesh, and the beasts own howls of pain. Hopper died but he didn't die alone.
As I slammed open the doors that led outside I tripped, slamming hard onto the concrete flooring. Even with a large gash on my face that pain didn't even come close to the pain of losing Hopper.
I ran to the van, jumped inside and turned on the ignition.
Safe to say from there, I never looked back and never forgot.
I would pay back Hopper for his sacrifice, or I would die trying.