A small sample of the sixth kRaveings Book: Evo

Welcome to another Week of Damn Write! as I have another sample from the collection of books I’ve written. This is from the book to focus on the newest member of the team, Evo! Here ya go!

Evo

A kRaveings Story

by: Soul Tsukino

A late morning Sun beamed down over the city of Coldwater as another day was already started for the citizens that call the city home. On the west end of the city’s borders sat the once industrious factory district. While a few of the older buildings still house some leftovers from a bygone era and brought production to the city, there were a lot more buildings that were now rubble or abandoned.

However, one building that still stood, even if the production inside its walls had long ended, had long found another purpose. It used to produce clothing and things that people of a past generation used to wear, it has also been a place for young people to go and get lost. Lost in themselves, each other, or the music that once used to fill it’s old brick walls. In this current time, it was little more than a home. A home to the city’s most unusual superhero and his ghost friend. But in recent weeks the building was home to one more.

Off in the corner of one of the upper floors of the building a young woman sat on the edge of a shoddy bed frame and mattress. She sat there with her head down and staring at her feet on the floor. Not that there was much to look at. This corner of the building didn’t have any windows to the outside. Those could be found elsewhere. But for the one sitting there, that was just fine. This was the building’s newest tenant, Evo.

It had only been a couple of weeks since she had gathered whatever she owned and made her new home inside the building. The apartment she used to live in was not a great place. The heat didn’t work very well, the rent was too high which matched the landlord very well. And the security of the area was not something to envy. She would have loved to say the move was brought about by her improving her life, but the change had come upon her suddenly. She lost her job. The Bar she used to collect her paycheck from was made into a massacre. Innocent people were killed. Some of her friends were killed, and a large portion of her life was gone. She was able to take what little had made it through the shootout with the group known as The Erasers, but even if she would never speak of it, the images from that night were still there. Even the blood she had seen on the walls when she returned was something she wished she’d forget.

But it was during that episode, or maybe even the one that brought it about came back into her life. She had spent a lot of time in this building years before. As a stupid teenager with ideas in her head, dreams in her eyes, and god knows what running through her system. She was one of the ones that tried to lose herself in everything. She was trying to forget what she had experienced when she was young. Abuses, manipulation, and being forced to be something she was not, or ever going to be. She had come here and met him. People said he was strange, a criminal, and all that, but in a strange way, kRaven had been the beacon for her and those she used to call friends, even family. They weren’t related to her by blood, but by circumstance. She was no Alex during that time either,  She looked at the scars and marks on her arms that she had put there herself in an effort to find peace through whatever substance she could find. She didn’t hate herself for the marks on her arms, she did what she had to do, but they were a sign that she had done these things, and in their own way, things could get better.

Back then, She didn’t want to leave. Members of her family who thought “they knew better” removed her from that. Tried to change her into something “appropriate for God”. She was taken out of her element, out of this city, away from everything. Maybe it was the reason she was still alive and many of the others she knew were now gone. But kRaven was still there. He had been the one that ran the madness inside the building back then, and she couldn’t believe he walked into the bar that night. She had heard the rumors, that he had died in jail, drugged himself to death, even had been killed by his own plots and ideas. When she was able to come back and get something of a life back together, she had wondered what really had happened. Seeing him, the black leather and the pink biohazard symbol on a doo rag, she didn’t believe it. This must have been someone else. If they hadn’t shot him right through the head it would have been a wonderful reunion. Seeing the cyberlocked hero revive himself with whatever it was that brought him back was also something she couldn’t forget. For a time that night, she thought she had lost him again but was she in for a surprise. She knew that kRaven was different. She didn’t know the how and why, but he was different. That night proved it.

Since then, her job was gone, her car was destroyed, and she moved whatever she had from that dank apartment and over into this place. kRaven had warned her it was not a luxurious mansion, but she didn’t care. She remembered camping out in this building before, especially during the cold winters and stormy springs. The difference was now was she wasn’t high and when there wasn’t loud techno music playing, she got a decent night’s sleep instead of just passing out.

Evo ran her hand through her unkempt dark hair with the blue streaks running down each side. She needed to get up. Sitting here thinking about the past wasn’t going to help anyone. She grabbed a bottle sitting on the floor a few inches away and unscrewed the top before taking a swig. It was not the strongest stuff she had in her possession, but it made for a good nightcap and not a bad wake up call either. Evo lifted herself up to her feet and stretched out a big yawn. She still had some fog in her head as she went to the part of this floor of the building that had been turned into a kitchen. kRaven or Mirakoshi weren’t there, but being alone in the morning wasn’t anything new for her either. She started putting together some coffee. She opened the container and saw there wasn’t much left. She scooped what was left and started the coffee maker going, hearing it making sounds the little machine probably wasn’t supposed to make. Evo rolled her eyes. But right now was time for a shower.

It was a little while later when Evo came back into the kitchen area with her hair still wet but in a change of clothes. Her old shirts and jeans with rips in them didn’t look clean even after going to the laundry mat, but she didn’t care. She wasn’t trying to impress anyone. She grabbed a cup and poured herself some of the freshly made brew, gladly seeing the coffee was actually warm and the coffee maker had actually worked. Nothing fancy from her first sip, just regular store brand without the fancy bells and whistles. She heard the footsteps and saw kRaven walking by the doorway, giving a silent friendly salute as he passed by. She hadn’t seen the ghost all morning, but she didn’t even know what he did, let alone if he actually slept or not. She might ask Mirakoshi sometime, but how do you ask something like that?

With a cup of joe in her hand, she made her way out and walked to the catwalk overlooking the other side of the square building. She took a moment to see this place was already looking different. All the old music and light equipment were packed away and gone, replaced by metal shelves along the wall and a large worktable with a lot of her stuff now filed away around it. One side of the big room had the large industrial doors that were usually closed, but one was open just a bit to help vent the space. The floor was now covered in different parts from the old hearse she had purchased and almost immediately began pulling apart to start remaking. Off in one corner, the incomplete car sat ready to be put back together and even better than before.

Evo slowly came down the stairs and set her cup on the table. She was still waiting for the caffeine from the coffee to kick in but she did remember that she wanted to get things done on the car. It wasn’t a quick process, but it would get done eventually. She reached for the paper she had sitting around with her ideas and plans scribbled on them. She may be living in a different building, but this is where she was really at home.  Especially now with an idea and a goal in mind. That rustbucket of a hearse was on its last legs, so it was time to give it some new ones. If this car worked after all this the way she hoped, she could deliver pizzas lightning quick around the area if this superhero thing didn’t work out.

As Evo was starting her day downstairs, back upstairs kRaven was looking over things online. He was looking over things on the news sites of the area and was listening to a police scanner paying attention to anything in the area that needed a hero. It was part of being a superhero no one ever talked about, not to mention he wasn’t exactly the first person the city or the police would contact in case something happened. He didn’t know how the cops kept in contact with the city’s primary guardian, the monstrous big and tall masked hero known as The Star. That was some secret between them. The few times the Police needed him or Mirakoshi, the Police Chief just called him on the phone like a normal conversation. He had never seen any big spotlights in the sky like those characters on TV had. Maybe The Star had a big blaring red phone in whatever lair he hid himself in. For himself, he just kept watch on the news and police conversation and in his spare moments played with some digital music to sell stuff on the internet.  Not like he was going to brag about making sampled music as a superpower.

As kRaven was connected to his computer away from just about everything, he thought he had heard someone moving around and one of his medusa tendrils perked up from his head and connected to the wall of the building. It didn’t take long to see a person’s energy sitting downstairs at the where the large table now sat. He smacked himself mentally as he literally had just seen her. Living alone for so long and then having a ghost for a housemate, he was not used to having an actual living person he could detect with his powers around. Not that he did that very often. He didn’t want to find out she was sitting on the throne or anything like that.

He didn’t want to gush in front of her, but he was glad that she was here now.  Evo had lost a lot in recent days and kRaven still felt the guilt over being the cause for a lot of it. But she was also one of them, one of the kids long ago that came to this building to escape their own lives for whatever reason. She was older, alive, and as far as he knew, she wasn’t carrying around any effects of having been here so many times. Not all of those kids back then could say the same. So, at the very least, he could have her around again and help her out. And from what he had seen of her workmanship when he helped her move and seen her self-made firearms in action, she would be a great asset to anyone in his position. This city wasn’t the kindest to people. so having some firepower around might be a good idea, especially after his run-in with The Erasers.

kRaven sat up in his chair and stretched, seeing there was nothing of note going on to get his attention. He got a whiff of some coffee Evo made so maybe it was time to take a small break. Sure, the nanorobotics that gave him these powers meant he technically didn’t have to eat to live, but he was a sucker for the smell of fresh coffee. kRaven got up from his chair and walked down to the kitchen he helped put together a long time ago. He nabbed this building legally, but for the price, it was a steal back then. It looked every bit its age and what appliances her did have were mostly still functional thanks to his abilities and nanotechnology. The table that sat in the small room was pulled from a dump. It had rust on the legs and wobbled a bit, but it did its job. Besides, the wonderful smell of fresh coffee reminded him it didn’t matter. He grabbed a mug from one of the cupboards and poured himself a cup.

Taking the first sip, kRaven was glad to find that the old coffee maker had indeed worked. He looked around and couldn’t shake the thought of how much things could be improved. Knowing there was someone else here now, and what his actions had done, maybe that was what spurred this thinking. Cleaning up this building, it wasn’t so much the money. Getting a crew out here wouldn’t be easy or indeed the wisest thing to do considering he is supposed to be a superhero after all. Knowing this town and some of the people he ran into, he’d probably end up with some mad contractor or a super-powered plumber wanting to get him. But with the rickety table and things that were well past their expected life spans, and even a trip to a furniture store would make a noticeable change, he just never really considered it. With just him living here and even with one other “not” living here, it just never really became an issue, but he didn’t want to bring her here just to living in a dump. He didn’t remember much from the first couple of times he had seen what she was living with, but he had to try and do something better.

As he looked around the kitchen area under his dark glasses, the spirit Mirakoshi floated through one of the inner walls and greeted kRaven.

“Hey Ghosty,” kRaven reciprocated.

“Do you detect any trouble in your observations?” the ghost asked.

“Nope,” kRaven replied. “Seems like a slow morning. Nothing I could find.”

“That is the trade-off of the people’s safety over our restlessness is it not?”

“Yup,” kRaven said before taking another sip. “Got to give Donnally and the Police something to do. Can’t have all the fun. By the sound of it though, there isn’t much for them to do either.”

Mirakoshi agreed about the city’s Police Chief that he had encountered before. As they were talking, the sound of a radio being turned on in one of the other rooms made them both look in the direction of the largest space in the building.

“I believe Ms. Evo is continuing her work,” Mirakoshi commented.

“Good,” kRaven replied. “I was worried she’d hate it here and be bored to death.”

“I was concerned about the opposite of your worry,” the ghost explained. “Especially after our involvement with The Erasers. Our style of action is not the most inviting.”

kRaven raised an eyebrow under his dark glasses. “Do you mean the auto theft, the breaking and entering, whatever you did to whatshername,  or the shootout with the political assassins?”

The ghost gave kRaven just as strange a look in return. Indeed all of these things had taken place on their last adventure.

“Your sense of sarcasm is noticeable,” Mirakoshi commented.

kRaven nodded. “Well, after what happened at the bar right in front of her, if she didn’t kill me for that I guess she doesn’t mind that much.”

“If not for Evo’s help, you would have had a more difficult night that night,” the ghost replied remembering their efforts with kRaven’s dead body with part of his head missing.

“I know,” kRaven said with a thoughtful tone.

As he contemplated things the sound of metal striking metal made him turn and look towards that part of the building. He cracked a smile.

“Nice to hear some real activity again.”

The spirit nodded. “I concur.”

“Wanna see what she’s up to?”

“Shall we?”

kRaven finished off his cup and set it down before both headed out of the kitchen area towards the other side of the building. Kraven opened the door to the metal catwalk overlooking the largest area and heard the sound of a radio playing and work being done. He walked down a couple of steps and sat down on the old metal stairway.

“It is peaceful is it not?”

The kabuki faced ghost floated down and took a seat next to kRaven on the bare metal stairs.

“It is,” kRaven replied nodding a bit.

“I too have found solace in watching others pratic their craft,” the ghost stated. “She can be quite creative.”

“It’s better than snorting dust up your nose,” kRaven said.

The ghost’s eyes looked to his friend. Mirakoshi instantly remembered those he attained memories from and some of them were very altered. “I agree.”

“Have had to take over a few druggies over the years?” kRaven asked.

“I have,” the ghost responded.

“It’s not fun on this side either.”

“I would assume not,” Mirakoshi replied. “You both have had those experiences as well.”

kRaven nodded. “Yup.”

Both sat silently as Evo went to work on some sheet of metal with a hammer.

“You were very considerate to have her join us at this dwelling,” Mirakoshi commented.

“Had to do something,” kRaven replied taking his eyes off Evo’s efforts, “After having that bar all shot to crap. Plus, she’s one of them. The ones here. It is the least I could do.”

Mirakoshi was all too familiar with the adventure that led to meeting Evo and kRaven having another close encounter with death, only to be saved by his powers and makeup of nanotechnology. An end result of that previous adventure was Evo was no longer being employed.

“Evo has taken quickly to a part of this building as a dwelling, though it looks like she has things planned for that area too.” Mirakoshi mused.

kRaven gave a snort and a chuckle. He wasn’t going to say it, but the place Evo had decided to use for a bedroom was not picked at random. He remembered her saying something about being on that part of the upper floor before and that is where she had “lost her V card back in the day” as she said. He couldn’t argue with that logic.

“She seems to have recovered much from the events she was witness too,” Mirakoshi commented.

kRaven shook his head, “Nah. It still hurts, so don’t bring it up to much. That all meant a lot to her too.”

kRaven thought to the trip they had made to the now destroyed bar and collecting what they could of it. His thought, however, was interrupted by a loud CLANG right in front of him as a welding hammer was right next to him. They both looked down.

“I can hear you two ya know!” Evo said from below, “You CAN talk to me.”

kRaven snapped back to attention. “Sorry!”

“What are you two doing up there anyway? Don’t tell me you’ve never seen a woman work on a car before,” She yelled up above her.

“Sorry,” kRaven apologized even louder, “We aren’t exactly craftsmen you know! It’s new for us!”

“What?” Evo asked confused as hell with the response.

The Ghost floated down to the workbench that Evo was standing at with a confused look on her face, “I believe he is saying that we admire your workmanship even though neither of us is good in creating things.”

Evo looked right through the nearly translucent ghost.

“Well, I didn’t think you were a hands-on type of guy. Not unless you make trips to the graveyard.”

“I assure you I do not,” Mirakoshi replied failing to see the humor. “But might I ask what it is you are creating?”

Evo was surprised that the ghost was the one to ask this.

“When did you get interested in cars?”

The ghost had to think, “I believe one of those I bonded with overtime was very much like you. A fixer and creator of things. I am not entirely sure where these thoughts and memories come from, but the name Studebaker comes up often.”

Evo was hardly a car expert. But she knew that name brought things back to the past.

“That’s a bit before my time. I think this heap was something from the 1980s. Certainly ran like it did, and looked even worse.”

“You are making your adjustments to fix such things?” Mirakoshi asked.

“Yeah. Put a new power source in it, give it some firepower and some gadgets, Make it run, and still keep it legal,” Evo replied. “I don’t know anything about the history and stuff of whoever made it, but it is worth playing with.”

Mirakoshi’s image nodded with some appreciation.

“I gotta work more upstairs too,” She said, “those old brick walls are bland as hell to look at in the morning.”

“There is lots of spare material in the buildings around the area,” kRaven chimed in from up above, “These old buildings are full of junk no one uses anymore. Just gotta know where to look.”

Evo looked up, “Just what I like to hear.”

kRaven nodded. “City doesn’t clean those places up, so why not?”

Evo knew this was essentially looting, but that idea never stopped her before. She shook her head slowly and cracked a smile.

“kRaven the recycler. right?

kRaven snorted, “That’ll put the terror into evildoers.”

“You make a lot of junk runs or something?” Evo asked.

“Raw material to fix things and keep this place livable. I think half a car went into that fridge and that coffee maker has material from four different countries,” kRaven explained. “You know what I mean right?”

“I do,” Evo answered. “But in all the years I’ve known you, you never were a Mr. Fix it type.”

kRaven just tapped the side of his head with his finger. “Nanorobots.”

Evo shrugged. “I just build stuff the hard way.”

“You have more fun with it,” kRaven replied. “Let me tell you the time I fixed the elevator to the basement and how much industrial lube leaves a bad taste when you absorb it.”

Evo’s eyes grew. She did not want to know.

“That stuff gave me something to do when it was just me,” kRaven said remembering a time not long ago. “After getting sober I started to feel the solitude you know? Things like that killed the boredom sometimes.”

Evo made a thoughtful a solemn face. She had an idea what it must have been like.

“The life of the super-powered huh?”

“It’s not always a shootout with an international syndicate,” kRaven replied from his perch, “There is a lot of downtimes here. We gotta leave something for the cops to do.”

“Huh,” Evo replied as the thought made sense.

“It creates a place for self-thought,” Mirakoshi added. “I use such time for meditation.”

Evo looked around to all the metal work around her, “Same. I guess.”

“I can very much see the similarity,” the ghost replied. “We all have our ventures.”

“It’s not the thrill ride the city used to be,” kRaven said stepping off the stairs to the ground floor. “It was busier back in the old days when there was more money to go around.”

“I can say the same for this place,” Evo added. “Back then I never expected The Hive would be sooo… benign.”

“Know the feeling,” kRaven grumbled under his breath.

The sound of news bulletin music playing on the radio caught all three’s attention.

“A report just into our listeners in the area. The area of Coldwater on the West end near Aberman’s is blocked off due to a police issue around the store. Avoid the area for the time being if you can as Police want the area cleared and bystanders outside of the area. We will certainly have more to report as the details are sent to us.”

kRaven perked up at the report, “That doesn’t sound good.”

######

You can read the rest of the story for just 99Cents at these ebok retailers:

Amazon

Smashwords

Barnes and Noble

Gumroad

And the next adventure of kRaven, Mirakoshi, and Evo is coming out on Halloween! 3 of a Kind!

3 of a Kind! A New kRaveings book coming Halloween! from Soul Tsukino on Vimeo.

Now, before I go I want to point anyone reading this towards a special little pup who is part of the family of a friend of mine. I have not had the chance to meet her personally, but Bailey isn’t feeling too good and she needs some help. Poor Bailey could use the kindness of strangers so if you are reading this, I ask you to give her a little love and help her and Jen out. She has had a rough one so far so she could use the help. You can donate to her and her human Jen HERE.

Read Cityscape Tokyo to find out how the two teens and their guardian have to survive and watch out for each other when the company’s dark past comes back to haunt the kids and their guardian once again and make for an incredible adventure in Cityscape Tokyo! Now available on the Bull Moose website!

http://www.bullmoose.com/p/24827899/soul-tsukino-cityscape-tokyo

You can also find my other work HERE

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