The City X

Story by Khopesh on SoFurry

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#10 of The City

Khopesh sat in the café at the base of the Zotz Security Solutions, Belle offices, twirling a coffee cup in a circle and staring into the darkness. After the meeting with Maya and Amber, he had met up with Jak and Vir to go over the timeline and official reprimand with them. They had been exposed a lot as a result of drones that the Coalition had patrolling the area. Film drones, taking videos, leaking them to the world as an example of outside intervention in the area, with clever editing showing nothing resembling a Daeva in the area. He shook his head, smiling in disgust at himself as he heard someone sit across from him. He looked up to see Amber sitting across from him. "Okay, what's up, Kho?"

Khopesh looked back down into his coffee and sighed, shaking his head. "They doctored everything. Plus, you know."

Amber patted his paw lightly. "What's the, 'you know'?"

Khopesh looked up, mood dropping a bit before he nodded. "Guess we did gear up a bit too quickly before the mission to go over personal issues that might have a negative effect. Haka... She broke up with me. Couldn't handle the distance. It was alright when I was based in Inger, but when I moved here, to Belle... Too much distance for her. Too much for me, too, most likely. I just haven't realized it yet."

Amber nodded a bit, sliding him half of a pastry she had bought. "It happens, Kho. We all lose the ones we love when we least want to. Everyone wants you to be at the top of your form, and you were in the... mission.." She placed her paw over her mouth before lowering it and whispering, "Is this why you were scared of leaving Astra?"

Khopesh shook .for a moment before sniffling and having a few tears drop into his coffee. :"I...I'm t-tired of loss... It sucks... and that j-just... I'm sorry..."

Amber moved her chair next to him and gave him a hug. "Don't be sorry. Losing a lot in that time is tough. You'll see, though, it's better to hurt now and thrive later than be stuck badly all the way."

Khopesh sniffled a bit, nodding. "I know you're right. Thanks..."


Khopesh snapped back to reality. He had dozed off a bit as everyone in Lapillus got in position on a hill overlooking their old compound. He loaded a round into his rifle, inhaling deeply and turning to Sill and Copp. "What's the plan?"

Sill slid Khopesh the map as Copp cleared his throat and started talking. "Plan is, they lock up all their prisoners in the houses or yards of the nearby suburb. We split up and go for, well, our houses. Try to find any survivors. Need help finding your house?"

Khopesh passed the map back, shaking his head. "I grew up there... They took my childhood home. I know where it is."

Copp placed a finger on his shoulder and nodded, passing Khopesh the flare gun. The signal to start the attack.

He pointed the gun to the sky, and fired.


A golden light illuminated the area, causing a great scream of panic to rise from below. Every member of Lapillus charged down the hill, giving their best version of a cry of determination back, many troops leveling their weapons and firing, causing the Coalition ranks to fall partially. The force bottlenecked into the suburb, spreading out, small teams taking each house by force. Khopesh waved off a few troopers readying to help him, sliding into his house and backing up deliberately, heading into his closed garage instead. He found no resistance.

He holstered his weapon, quickly sliding to a hidden locked cabinet and pulling the key from a chain on his neck. He opened the door swiftly, paws nabbing and loading a revolver, tucking it into his belt with a quick, mental, "Dad's revolver", as he grabbed the shotgun and a box of shells. He loaded and chambered the gun, shivering a bit. ":Uncle Steve's shotgun. Guide me from the darkness."

He slid through the house, checking the bedrooms, finding nobody in the house. It was, luckily, one of the almost-empty properties in the area. He sighed slightly, closing his eyes and hearing the rapport of gunfire in the distance, knowing that was the sign of homes being cleared, people being saved. His ears perked hearing the gunfire from a certain angle. Please, Jak, find Pallas and Tanz. His fur pricked slightly as he heard the lightest of breaths from in front of him, from the backyard. He reached out and flicked the light on.

Amber was covered in blood, laying and panting on the back porch. Khopesh stared at the broken form, shaking slightly, before slamming down the glass with his shotgun's stock, stepping out to pick up the sabertooth. " AMBER. I HAVE YOU. YOU WILL BE OKAY." His body shook, unsure if his words would be true, as he picked up her body, sprinting from the yard to a medical truck, handing her body to Chap. Chap nodded, taking her body, getting her prepared for transport. Khopesh lost sight of the rest of the operation, blacking out and seeing the bleeding cat gasping for breath before moving back to help.


Khopesh sat in the medical hallway. The scent of antiseptic burnt his nose long ago. He sat staring at his paws, glancing up at the ICU. Amber and Tek were in the same room. The doctors and nurses had stabilized them. Jak walked over from a different ICU unit, having seen Pallas and Tanz stabilized. She sat next to Khopesh. "Gonna tell her?"

Khopesh chuckled nervously, looking ovre to Jak. "Tell her what?"

Jak shrugged. "That you love her, you want her, you need her. Girls love that. Trust me, go for it."

Khopesh nodded, standing up, walking into the room.

His fur ruffled a bit, hearing the beeping of the heart monitors from both bodies. He leaned down over Amber and smiled. "How are you doing, Lux?"

She smirked a bit. "Pretty good, Perp. Much better now."

Khopesh exhaled and nodded, looking away. As he inhaled to ask a question, he heard a soft question from Amber that chilled him.

"I-is he alright? Tek-tek? Will he be okay?"

Khopesh knew the feeling, but looked towards Tek's bed, responding. "He just needs a bit more time. Tek'll be back. W-why?"

Amber let out a nervous noise and simply said, "H-he's my... my b-boy... erm..."

Khopesh closed his eyes tightly, steadying himself and patting Amber's leg. "Your boyfriend will be alright. I promise. Is it alright if I go?"

Khopesh saw Amber nod as he slid into the hallway, making his way to a stairwell and sitting in a corner. He inhaled raggedly, trying to calm himself as Jak made her way in. "Khopesh?"

Khopesh looked to the ground, seeing wet sports form where his now-foggy eyes looked. He shook his head before looking up with tear-filled eyes. "I-I-I-I-I led u-us into a n-nearly bad situation f-for a b-bad personal reason..."

Jak sat next to him, offering a candy bar. Jak always carried candy bars, usually for Tanz, but she often gave them out to whoever needed them nowadays. Khopesh took it slowly with a nod, unwrapping it and biting into it. Jak cleared henr throat. "You saved most of our original group. The only ones who didn't come died from old age or disease, which the Coalition didn't give a fuck about anyways. You led us to where we needed to be. Now, everyone possible is in The City. We're at least somewhat safe. Fuck it, you did it for bad reasons, but the results are good. Never forget that."

Khopesh shivered a bit and sighed. "S-selfish..."

Jak interrupted him. "Nearly one thousand other people were saved. That isn't selfish. If you don't stop that, I'll kick your ass."

Khopesh inhaled and slowly nodded. "We... did what we needed to."

Jak nodded, leaning to give him a hug. "You made us excel. Thank you."

The City IX

He sat in the office, sighing lightly. The view in front of him was to die for, for anyone average: A grand view of Belle, the Eternal City, stretched out from one of the many hills dotting the landscape. Perpetuum - or rather, Khopesh - was staring...


The City VIII

Perpetuum climbed into the helicopter, panting softly. They had gotten the data from Astra's suit and were heading home. Their objectives, even the new one, had been completed to satisfaction. Perp took off his helmet and looked at the floor, breathing...


The City VII

The group of three reached the cave entrance and peered in. Their thermal sights lit up a trail of fresh blood from Astra leading into the system. They turned towards each other with a nod and made their way in, following the blood trail. As they went...