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Mehdi raised another finger, and pointed it at one of the ten year old girls. Then came the
whistle, the splash of blood on the couch behind her, and the sound of the back of her head
hitting the couch as she was knocked back with the force. What followed were shrieks, from the
apparent mother, grandmother, and sisters. The thirteen year old boy only stared. The two
soldiers that had been sent upstairs came back down to the main floor.
“Nothing?” Mehdi said, looking at them.
They shook their heads. “Nothing,” said the one on the left.
Mehdi nodded, the fingers of one gloved hand on his chin. He didn‟t think he could trust
any of his men completely. “Okay. Yeah, okay.” He put his attention back on the family. His
eyes rested on the mother who was now holding the dead girl in the crook of her arms. She was
talking to the body in a different language. Mehdi, his expression turning colder, said, “Hey, be
happy you still have most of your family left. Now, who‟s the next target going to be?”
No answer. He pointed his weapon and the mother looked up at him and screamed,
“No? Well, do you have something to tell me?” The fingers of one gloved hand drummed
against the side of his leg, as he waited.
“There is no humanoid here!” she shouted at him. “Go somewhere else and look for
He nodded. “It starts with one.” He took a step forward. “It starts with just one. You
saying no only makes my job harder. You think you‟re protecting your kid, but you‟re not.” He
knelt down, now just a few feet from the mother and the rest of her family. “One day it‟s not just
going to be a humanoid that moves like you or me, understand? One day it‟ll be weaponized. It
starts with one and then before you know it they overtake our world.”