Till then everyone has been keeping quiet. But then Angelica speaks up,'' Who's this thing professor?''. Ernest was keeping silent for a while as he lifts his face downwards. '' Can anyone tell us? I also wanted to know about it for a while,'' Seraphina added.
'' Who's this professor? Tell us?'' asks Gabriel. '' Yes tell us,'' Cannon says. '' Yes we want to know,'' says Cain. '' Please tell us,'' Michael says. '' Please tell us,'' Ariel says. Among all of this Chris and other professors look at the face of Ernest.
When all of them were telling him to speak up he could not speak up. '' Why are you a silent professor?'' Daniel asked. Ernest had to speak up now. '' Guess now everything is clear to you so I don't have to hide it anymore now,'' Ernest begins to say.
'' You don't have to explain anything to anyone now. I can introduce myself to others,'' says the norm-like creature. Everyone was surprised to see that it can speak by itself. '' It can speak?'' Raphael asked.
'' Yes I can human,'' replied the creature stepping down from where it was standing. It walks up to them.
'' This is a research product,'' Chris comments looking away from the norm. '' But what is this creature ?'' asked Daniel. '' Yes I also want to know,'' Angelica added.
'' I am the child of nothingness and intelligence. I am created from both a human and the silicon-based object that's called the Norm which you all say,'' replied the thing standing in front of them.
It was wearing a white dress up to its knees. '' Child of nothingness?'' Daniel stutters hearing that. '' Intelligence?'' Ariel utters.
'' I still can't understand can anyone explain more clearly?'' Dina shouts out of frustration. '' I will explain but later, not here. Only by telling a little, you won't be able to understand,'' Ernest says.
'' But professor, it was sleeping, right? How did it manage to wake up?'' Enoch asked. Chris looks at Ernest who was silent.
'' Guess even he doesn't have the answer to that. None of us knew that it could wake up,'' Chris thought. '' On top of that, he destroyed one precious core also.''
'' I woke up because of the other norm. It came to save me, I took in the core crystal and took away its life to me. That's how I am here,'' said the creature looking at them.
None of them was able to understand what it was trying to say. But Daniel was able to understand. As he heard what they were talking about during the fight.
Before the norm's head was cut off it had said, '' I have given my life to you. Use it well.''
'' I will explain everything to you but not here. Let's go into some other place or else even we will be infected with this assimilation phenomenon,'' says Ernest.
'' Yeah, I was getting pretty much tired of this place anyway. Wish you had freed me sooner than these,'' says the creature walking past Daniel.
'' Follow him,'' Ernest said as he was following it. '' You can get out of your Angels now, hand the core over now,'' Chris said to them.
Seraphina and Dina handed them the cores. As they get out of the Angels all the kids go over to where that thing went to.
They all sit in the other room. All the kids on one side and the scientists on the other. In the middle of them was the creature sitting. '' You can begin speaking professor,'' Daniel says to Ernest who had a rigid expression on his face.
When he was about to speak up that creature interrupted. '' Hey, you human, bring me something to eat. I always wanted to eat what you humans eat,'' says the creature.
Chris gives him a plain look back. '' Hurry up,'' it said again. '' Alright I am bringing it,'' she replied getting up from there.
That creature was now looking at their faces out of curiosity. '' This is the first norm-the thing we discovered when the research started. We found it during the norm attacked us. Then we found this thing out of one big norm. Then we brought it here to the lab. Thus the research started.''
'' After that, it had been sleeping we thought that it will never wake up. But now it is awake,'' Ernest looked at the creature which was playing with the locks of its hair.
'' You thought that I will never be awakened. But that wish of yours will never come true. I am alive so I can't sleep for forever,'' says the creature smiling at him.
'' As you can see it's the mix of a human and a norm. It's neither full norm nor fully human. It's the hybrid. As we have found out it can transform into a norm too,'' Nora said with a sigh.
'' Hybrid? Something like that exists?'' Angelica asked with sparkling eyes. She could not believe that she can witness this.
'' Yes, I am the living example of that. As you can see I can walk and speak too. I am the same as you,'' says the creature walking up to Angelica. He touched her hand.
'' It's cold,'' Angelica says tracing his hands. '' There are so many things that you don't know about me,'' that creature says to Ernest.
'' So this is a mix of the norm and a human. Has anything like this been seen ever before ?'' Daniel asked with his arms fixed in front of his chest.
'' No this is the first one,'' Chris replied arriving there. '' Here you go your food.'' She hands it over to that creature. '' So this is food? So pretty, can I digest it ?'' he utters as watches the food as if it's the most interesting thing in the world.
" I have a suggestion," says Dina attracting everyone's attention to hers. "What is it?" Steven asked.
"Now that we know its identity. Shouldn't we name it or something? I mean it's here in front of our eyes after all. Shouldn't we give it a name to call?" Dina asked looking at it eating happily in joy.
"A name? Well, this sounds good,'' said Michael agreeing to her opinion. '' You want to name a norm? Never heard of that before," remarks Raphael.
" Can we even call it our friend?" Azrael asked. " We are supposed to kill all the Norms right?"
He raised a question for others as they looked quite puzzled. "As you say I am not your friend exactly but," the norm sits among them. " I can become your enemy if you don't treat me exactly the way I want to."
This felt like a threat to Daniel. " I am the child of nothingness created from the assimilation phenomenon crystals. I was created from nothing and can go back to nothing too. I can again take birth. As long as I have the core inside of me I can come back to life countless times again and again. There's no one here who can kill me until I want to die willingly," it said placing its hand on his chest with a fixed expression.
"So you are saying you are immortal or something?" Enoch asked. "Well yeah, you can say that," it replied.
"Anyway,y, you were about to name me or something right? Hurry up," says the creature. "What should we name you?" Cannon asked. "What are you think anyway? Are you a girl or boy ?" Raphael asked out of irritation.
That creature paused for a moment. "I don't know," it replied. "What? How come you don't know what you are ?" asked Cassiel. " It's obvious it's not going to know what it is. In the first place norms don't have any gender anyway," Ernest says getting up from his seat.
"Yes I am genderless," it said with a smile. All of them seemed to be freaked out by that. "Genderless? something like that exists ?" Daniel asked examining its features.
"Yes I can transform into a male or female anything I want," it replied. " Wanna see?". "Stop that," Chris says to it placing her hand on its head.
'' Come on give me a name hurry up,'' whined that creature.'' Wait for a little be patient,'' says Ernest. '' Wait, I have a name on mind, '' says Gabriel.
'' What is it ?'' Ariel asked. Everyone looks at her now. '' How about we name it, Hope? Sounds good right ? as he's neither boy nor girl, '' Gabriel says. '' Hope? Hope? I like the ring to it. Hope yeah let's go with this,'' says Dina.
'' Sounds good,'' Seraphina said with a boring look. '' Then it's decided then, we will call you Hope,'' says Angelica.
'' Hope? Well...'' it makes it keep thinking. '' Don't you like it ?'' Daniel asked. '' Hope? I like it, everyone calls me to hope then,'' says the creature smiling at them.
'' Alright hope we will call you to hope then,'' Daniel asserts. '' I am glad to be a part of this, Thank you, everyone,'' says the creature.
'' There is still something that hasn't been taken care of,'' comments Seraphina. '' What?'' asked Daniel.
'' I can't understand what to call it, him or her? I am confused,'' she said making all of them look at her in surprise.
'' You are quite funny Seraphina,'' says Angelica with a chuckle. They start laughing at her. '' You know, Even though I am not the same as you, I am starting to like you a little,'' says the norm.
'' You humans are not so bad after all,'' it says smiling at them. '' All that is said and done, none of them have their checkups done. Come and have them checked professor,'' says Chris.
'' Yes, thanks for reminding. Everyone come with me,'' says Ernest. '' Wait you all,'' Hope said not letting them leave the place.
'' What is it? You want something?'' asked Daniel. '' Yes, I want to know where I will be staying from now on,'' it said raising a question.
'' Why? You will be staying in the research lab where else?'' Nora replied. '' Don't expect me to stay there no matter what. I will be living with them and you have no place to refuse me,'' it says insisting.
'' You brat stay here, you are not human so you can't live with us,'' Daniel said with a grunt. '' I am going you all come over after the check-up is done,'' saying this he bursts out of there.
Daniel watched him go. Then he walks up to the professor. '' I have something to talk about with you in secret please come with me,'' he whispers in his ears. Ernest didn't have an inkling of what he was about to ask him about it.
Angelica found it quite strange. While others were having their checkups done Ernest went with Daniel into the research lab. '' What is it? Why did you bring me here?'' Ernest asked staring at the back of Daniel.
Daniel crouched down to touch the crystals on the ground. '' Hope, he was here right? None of us knew about it even though we have been living here even before our birth. Why's that? Why did you have to keep this a secret from us? What's the reason behind it? If he hadn't awakened no one would even know that he's here. Why did you keep his information away from us?'' asked Daniel, tracing the rough surface of the crystals.
Ernest paused for a moment then replied, '' Not everything needs to be told to you kids. And what would you have done by knowing it? You are raised here to act as the soldier who will protect us from the creature called Norms. Even if he's alive or not it doesn't matter anything to you right? You just have to do your duty nothing else.''
Daniel gets up, then faced Ernest with his head held high. '' You know we are not just tools whom you can use however you want to. We also have consciousness and a mind. We won't act just like you want to, so we have the right to know about him also. You are not keeping any more secrets from us are you?'' Daniel was pressing on the matter even further now.
Ernest paused for a moment. '' You won't lie to us, right? Cause we believe in you more than anyone. You and the other scientists are all the people we can call our own. Tell me all of this is not false? '' Daniel wanted to be clarified by the professor.
'' I don't think myself obliged to answer all of your questions. You are just a kid you don't need to know everything. If the time calls for it, I will tell you. Till then you have to wait for it,'' Ernest replied approaching him.
'' We don't want anything bad for you. And yes we can't help the fact that we are making use of you as tools of war. But don't worry, we don't think of you as tools at all. Don't think of yourself as a tool for us. We think of you as a proper human with a mind. All the kids are human to us. We are not evil adults for you,'' he said placing his hand on his head.
'' How can I doubt your words?'' Daniel said hugging Ernest. '' Then have faith in me and don't worry about anything. As long as we are here to watch over you nothing bad will happen to you, we will support you, Eve and Adams,'' Ernest said to him.
'' Now go, you need to let your check-ups done. The assimilation phenomenon is not good for your body. Even you know that very well, go.'' Daniel nods and goes to join the other kids. Then Ernest stares at the flask where Hope was kept all this while.
'' Why did you woke up? Is this because we humans are going to meet their end soon? Or you are the new hope for us? Will you be able to end the long war between humans and norms? I don't know whether that will be possible or not. We can only bet on those kids as they try to protect us with their lives. It's not fair even I know but we have reached the end of our lives. Hope we will be able to bless our lives ourselves. We do not need a fake god who can do nothing to save us. We need to create our god. Yes, I will create a perfect God who can save us, yes,'' Ernest thoughts as he looks at the flask.