Chapter 1: Awakening
Aiden Knight had everything.
He founded and led ExoTech, one of the world's most innovative and successful tech companies.
His inventions and patents spanned dozens of groundbreaking technologies, from artificial intelligence to biotechnology to nanotechnology.
He won numerous awards and honors, from the Nobel Prize to the Time Person of the Year.
He was a billionaire, a genius, a philanthropist, and a visionary.
He had a loving family, loyal friends, and countless admirers.
His jet-black hair, blue eyes, and sharp jawline complemented his tall stature. He always dressed in impeccable suits, and wore a confident smile.
Many admired him, some envied him, and few feared him.
He had everything, until the incident changed everything.
He sat in the back seat of his luxurious limousine, checking his phone for messages and emails.
He had just closed a deal with a major client, and felt satisfied with his work.
He looked out the window, and admired the city lights.
"Sir, we're almost home," his driver said, breaking the silence.
"Do you want me to turn on the TV, or play some music?"
"No, thank you, James. I'm fine," Aiden said, politely.
He liked James, he was a loyal and reliable employee.
He had been driving him for over a decade, and knew his preferences and habits.
He was also a skilled driver, who could navigate the busy streets of Aravon with ease.
"What about you, Max? Do you need anything?" Aiden asked, turning to his bodyguard.
Max was a muscular and bald man, with a scarred face and a stern expression.
He was a former soldier, who had served in the pandora army for many years.
He had been hired by Aiden as his personal security, and had saved his life on several occasions.
He was also a trusted friend, who had shared many secrets and stories with Aiden.
"I'm good, boss. Just keep an eye on your surroundings, and don't let your guard down,"Max said, scanning the street for any signs of trouble.
He was always alert and vigilant, he knew that Aiden had many enemies and rivals, who would love to see him fall.
He also knew that Aiden was too confident and careless sometimes, and needed someone to watch his back.
"Don't worry, Max. I can handle myself. Besides, who would dare to attack me in the middle of Aravon?
This is the safest city in pandora," Aiden said, chuckling.
He was not afraid of anyone, he had faced many challenges and threats in his life, and had overcome them all.
He was a man who had everything, and he was not going to lose it to anyone.
He was wrong.
He was unaware of the danger that lurked in the shadows, waiting for the right moment to strike.
He was unaware of the betrayal that had been planned by one of his trusted associates.
He was unaware of the bullet that was about to end his life.
The assassin was a professional killer, hired by a crime syndicate known as Fenrir.
Fenrir was a ruthless and powerful organization, that controlled most of the illegal activities in pandora.
It was led by a man named Willem Grant, a descendant of werewolves, and an alpha werewolf himself.
He was a cunning and ambitious leader, who wanted to expand his influence and wealth.
He had learned about Aiden's deal with his client, and had decided to sabotage it.
He had contacted one of Aiden's board members, John Stewart, and had offered him a deal.
He had promised to give him a large sum of money, and a share of ExoTech's profits, if he would help him kill Aiden. John Stewart was a greedy and impatient man, who wanted more power and money. He agreed to Willem's offer, and betrayed Aiden.
The assassin had followed Aiden's limousine from a distance, using a tracker that John Stewart had planted in Aiden's phone.
He waited until the limousine reached Aiden's mansion, a large and luxurious estate surrounded by high walls and security cameras.
He parked his car in a nearby alley, and took out his sniper rifle from the trunk. He climbed up a fire escape ladder to the roof of a building across the street from Aiden's mansion.
He set up his rifle on a tripod, and aimed at Aiden's bedroom window.
He put on a silencer, and waited for his target to appear.
Aiden got out of his limousine, and walked towards his mansion.
James opened the door for him, and Max followed him closely.
Aiden greeted his housekeeper and his dog, who were waiting for him in the living room.
He patted them and thanked them, and told them he was tired, and needed some rest.
He went upstairs to his bedroom, leaving them downstairs.
He entered his bedroom, and closed the door behind him.
He took off his suit jacket, and threw it on the bed.
He walked towards the window, and opened the curtains.
ραndαsnοvεl.cοmHe looked at the night sky, and smiled.
The assassin saw his target through his scope.
He pulled the trigger.
A silent shot flew through the night.
A bullet pierced through the window glass, and hit Aiden in the head.
Blood splattered on the wall behind him.
Aiden felt nothing, and fell to the floor.
His eyes closed in death.
His brain stopped functioning.
His life ended.
The assassin packed up his rifle, and left the scene.
No one noticed Aiden's death. His housekeeper and his dog were asleep downstairs.
His security cameras were hacked by the assassin.
His alarm system was disabled by John Stewart.
He was alone in his bedroom, dead.
But not for long.
Aiden suddenly felt a jolt of pain, and opened his eyes.
He saw a blood red screen in front of him, floating in the air.
On it was displayed the question:
[Do you choose to awaken?]
And under it, the options:
[Yes / No]
Aiden was confused and scared.
He didn't know what was happening.
He didn't know he was dead.
He didn't know he had a choice.
He instinctively pressed yes.
He felt another jolt of pain, and closed his eyes.
He felt his body twitching and convulsing.
He felt his head regenerating and healing.
He felt the bullet being pushed out of his skull.
He felt the hole closing up.
He felt his brain restarting and reconnecting.
He felt his life returning.
He opened his eyes again, and saw the blood red screen again.
On it was displayed:
[Awakening is complete.]
And then he heard a voice whispering in his ear:
And then he lost consciousness again.
Aiden woke up again, and found himself in his bathtub, covered in blood.
He saw the blood red screen again.
On it was displayed:
[Hunger has been satiated.]
[Countdown until next hunt:]
And then the screen vanished.
Aiden was terrified and confused.
He didn't know what had happened to him.
He didn't know what he had done.
He didn't know what he had become.
He had become something else.