Hey, this is my first attempt at writing a long work of fiction. I've written lots of short stories, newspaper articles, you name it before, but nothing like this. Let me know what you think of this first part! I'll try to continue working on this; if I have the time to and also can think of a good way to continue the story each time. I'm hoping to add some more at least once a week if not more often, but I'm not sure if I'll be able to stick to that. Thank you!
The Key of Xu-Ran
This story takes place about 100-150 years into the future. Don’t know an exact year yet, though.
Chapter 0, Part 1
As Andrew turned a corner to enter the next interior level of the security complex, he came across an unmarked, locked door. The door appeared to require a 10-digit PIN code, a fingerprint scan, and even an eye scan. “Madison?” he asked into his earpiece. “The guards are closing in on me. I need this door open, and fast.” For any normal person, or even most hackers, getting this door open would have been impossible, as Andrew didn’t have the PIN code, correct fingerprint, or correct eye to be scanned, all three of which needed to be correct or the building would go on lockdown, trapping Andrew inside. However, Madison was no ordinary hacker. Most would argue she was the most skilled hacker in the galaxy. “You got it, Andrew,” she said. “I can get you in and even change the security measures of the door, but I don’t think it will hold the guards off for long. You know what we’re here to do. Get it done and get out of there.”
The door clicked and unlocked. Andrew opened it and entered the information room. The information room had a bank of computers which contained everything the government of Ladensia had ever done, even all classified information (though that was hidden behind extra digital security). Andrew sat down in the chair at the base of the room, and with Madison’s help, gained access to the computer mainframe. “Now,” he said to himself, “where is it?” Andrew looked through several file directories with no luck, and then realized that the most classified of documents were hidden from even users of the mainframe. “Madison,” he started, “what we’re looking for is not visible normally to users of this mainframe. It’s likely hidden, where the person meant to access it needs a special device to connect. Can you get me there without that device?” Madison thought for a few seconds before responding. “I can do that, but it’ll take a few minutes. Those classified documents are the most protected things in the entire complex. It won’t be easy, but I’ll get it done. Guards are closing in on you from three different entrances to that room, however. I’m sending Luca in to buy you some time.”
As Luca, who had been disgusing as a guard, entered the room from another of the three entrances with the help of Madison’s hacking, Andrew could hear the guards approaching. They were using the emergency code to unlock each of the doors (which Madison was unable to disable, since the code did not exist digitally). When Luca arrived, he used his signature Blast Cannon to cover each of the three entrances in ice to prolong the time it would take the guards to get into the room. Soon after, Andrew heard the doors click open and the guards begin to crack through the ice by slamming heavy metal cyllanders into it. “Okay, I’ve cracked it. You have access to what we’re here for, now. Retreive it and delete it from their system,” Andrew heard Madison say, from his earpiece. Out of all the folders he saw, he knew the right one was the ‘Designs’ folder. They hadn’t come here for information. Scrolling down the files in that folder, soon enough he saw it. He plugged in his USB flash drive to the mainframe and began the download of the file. It was not a small file, by any means (about 875 gigabytes), so Andrew knew the download would not be instant like some files and would take 2-3 minutes.
The guards were cracking through the ice faster than Luca expected. He thought he would not need to bring too much ammunition for his blast canon, but he realized he should have brought more. If the guards captured him and Andrew, whatever followed for them would certainly not be pleasant. Therefore, Luca decided to use the last of his ammo from his blast cannon to buy Andrew some more time, because he knew they still needed some for the file to get fully onto Andrew’s USB flash drive. As the guards continued to get closer and closer to entering the room and capturing Andrew and Luca, so did the file to complete its download. The guards were getting so close to entering the room that Luca could now see the cracks in the ice getting more and more clearly, and he knew now they had one minute at most to get out of this room before they would be captured. “Are you almost done?” asked Luca to Andrew. “We need to get out of here. The guards will get into this room in 45 seconds.” As it turned out, Andrew was almost done. “98%, 99%, 100%, there!” exclaimed Andrew.
The file he and his team had come here for was now in their grasp. He ejected his USB flash drive, deleted the file he downloaded from the mainframe, and closed out of the secret classified section he had accessed on the computer. “20 seconds! We need to go, now!” said Luca, quite urgently. “Let’s go,” Andrew commanded, with a fiery sense of purpose in his eyes. Luca grabbed hold of him, and Andrew took out and launched his rope with an incredibly strong magnet attached to the end at the ceiling. He pulled himself and Luca up just as the guards broke through into the room from all three entrances. Andrew then pulled open the panel into the ceiling shaft that he and Luca would crawl through to escape. The guards didn’t think to look at the ceiling until it was too late and they could not stop Andrew and Luca from getting into the shaft and escaping from them. The two of them did not excape entirely, as they were still in the complex, but they had retrieved what they had came to get and were closer to getting out of there. Once they were in the ceiling shaft and away from the information room, Andrew turned to Luca, took his USB flash drive out of his pocket, and showed it to him. “The blueprints to the Maelstrom,” Andrew said. “Now, we have a chance.”