Invidia
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Invidia

By: Laura Holmes Updated just now

Language: English
16

Chapters: 32 views: 324

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FutureTeenagerStudentRevengeProtectiveFriendsSoulmate

Cameron Richards is 17. He wants nothing but to escape the wrath of his abusive stepfather who blames him for his mother's death. Yet, it's not that simple. Not with his stepfather being the president, and definitely not when the president has to help his people undergo a serious problem: the world is running out of oxygen. After mysterious sounds from the house and Cameron finding letters from his mother that hint at the nefarious means his stepfather is going to in order to stop this shortage, something found to be called Project Invidia, Cameron must find out what Project Invidia is and how to stop it, his stepfather, and the oxygen shortage, all while going to school.

Overview
Catalog
32 chapters
PROLOGUE
“Why the hell are you doing this?” Cameron mumbled. The gag dried out his mouth and made his tongue feel sandy, which made moving it to get the gag out all that more difficult. “You know why,” his stepfather answered, bent over the table Cameron was strapped to. The restraints sliced into his skin and bent his wrists at unnatural angles. “You’ve deceived me. You’ve lied. You’ve done everything in your power to overthrow me.” “What power?” He finally spit the gag out. “You’re the freaking president. I have no power. I don’t know why you think I can overthrow you.” After his stepfather slapped him, his face stung for a moment before fading into a mild burn, “That’s what I’m trying to figure out! I knew from the start that when I married Christy that you were going to be a pain in my ass. Now she’s dead, and it’s your fault.” “How is it my fault?” “Because she died to save your ungrateful little ass,” Hendrickson spat. “And you don’t even know why. Now you’re not going
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ONE
NINE MONTHS EARLIER Cameron stood there, mouth agape in a perfect, little “O.” His best friend waved his hand in front of Cameron’s face. “Cameron, you good, man?” Justin asked. “What?” he said, breaking out of his stupor. “Oh, yeah, yeah. I’m good.” He could feel his cheeks flush. He had been too distracted by the sight of Gabriella Clearwater—the most beautiful girl in the eleventh grade. Justin grabbed Cameron’s arm, “Come on, dude. We’ve got to get to physics class,” he finished with an eye roll. “Because that’s what I wanna learn about in 2163.” Heading down the hall towards biomechanical physics, Cameron envisioned Gabriella. — her curly brown hair cascading down her lean, muscular back; her eyes the color of the sky on a warm summer day; her plump lips untouched by bright red lipstick unlike all the other girls. “Oh, keep it in your pants, Cam,” Justin rolled his eyes. “Come on,” he had to yank Cameron’s arm hard enough to wrest him from his daydream. “Think a
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TWO
“What’s going on? Is she alright?” “We don’t know what’s wrong,” Justin answered. “She’s had her proper dosage of oxygen for the day, so we don’t know why she’d be shaking like this. She was fine and then after we got back from school, she started feeling bad and then a few minutes before I texted you, she collapsed. She’s been laying here on the floor ever since,” he gestured. Cameron’s heart was hurting for Carly. When Cameron and Justin had met in the third grade, Carly was nine, and she’d been close with them too. He knelt down on the floor beside her and held her hand—it was ice cold. “Does she have any other kinds of health problems?” Cameron asked. He didn’t know a whole lot about this sort of thing, but he knew enough that maybe he could help his friend figure out what was wrong with his little sister. “Not that I know of,” Justin said, sighing and sitting on the couch. The exhaustion was obvious on his face, and I broke Cameron inside because he didn’t know how to
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THREE
When Cameron woke up to the sound of his alarm blaring, he groaned and dragged himself out of bed. Hey, how is everything going? He shot to Justin. Carly and Justin never left his mind. Hey, you up? He saw he had a text—not from Justin, but from Madison. Hmm, he thought to himself. That’s weird. He typed back; I am now. Sorry. I had a late night last night. She responded Yeah me too. Are you able to talk on the phone before school? Cameron didn’t know what the hell was going on, but he said he’d talk for a few minutes. Pulling her up on videochat, he saw where she looked like she’d just woken up too. “Hey,” he said while yawning. “Hi,” she said awkwardly. After a moment of uncomfortable silence, he said, “Sooo, did you need something?” “Uh,” she said, then threw her hand up like she was brushing it off, “You know what? Never mind. I shouldn’t have called. I’m sorry to bother you.” “No, it’s okay. Really. What is it?” Cameron insisted. “Well,” she said ne
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FOUR
He found Justin, holding a to-go box, just outside the elevators. “Come on. Let’s go see my sister.” Cameron followed Justin down the hallway. “Justin, why were you gone so long?” His mother scolded him. Cameron had always thought Justin and his mom looked just alike, but it was even more prominent today with them being dressed so similarly—from the gray t-shirts and jeans to the straight dark hair to the black Converse sneakers. “Because the cafeteria is on the other damn side of the hospital?” Justin sassily questioned. “And then I met Cameron on my way back up, so I walked back with him.” “You, sir,” she pointed at Cameron. “Yes, Ms. Nelson?” Cameron looked up at her innocently. “I missed you, kid,” she smiled, pulling him into a hug. He hugged her tightly and responded, “I missed you too, ma’am.” “Thank you for being here with us. Even though she’s still sleeping, I know Carly would be apprec
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FIVE
The next morning, Cameron pulled out his HoloComm and shot a text to Justin: Hey, man. Can I ask a favor? If I ever start acting like my stepdad, will you promise to bust my ass? Then he hit send with no context whatsoever. He could already envision Justin’s brow crinkling with confusion. It’s a Saturday. It’ll be three hours before Justin even responds, he thought to himself. He probably went to stay with Carly all day. Cameron wished he could too, but his stepdad definitely wouldn’t let him after all the shit he’d pulled the night before. Figuring out how he was going to spend the day, he pried himself off the bed and rubbed the sleep from his eyes. Scuffing his feet all the way to the bathroom, he groaned. He’d decided to spend his Saturday cleaning. He kept the room quiet and smelling nice with the wax warmer he had by the window. It was his mother’s favorite scent—rosemary and frankincense. She always said those scents always helped clear her mind when she was
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SIX
When he awoke the next morning, he groaned with a throbbing pain in his head, ribs, and stomach. He immediately regretted sitting up, but there wasn’t really any other option. He supposed he should go to school that day. He hadn’t coughed up any more blood, but he’d vomited during the night. “Oh, yay. Another lovely start to a gorgeous day,” he grumbled. You coming in today? Madison texted. Yeah, probably, he answered. I’m a little sore, but nothing like yesterday. I’ll see you in Lit class. Alright, cool, she replied, and Cameron got dressed as quickly as he could muster. ***** “Dude, where were you?” Madison asked when he came in late with a note. “I was late, and I had to talk to Mr. Leonard,” he whispered to her. “It’s fine. I’m not in trouble.” Madison looked incredulous, “You really got away with missing twenty minutes of class?” “Apparentl
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SEVEN
Later that evening, Cameron, Justin, and Eli rode to the manor together. The tension in the car was high enough as is, but the silence they sat in made the hairs on Cameron's neck stand on end. It lasted for several minutes that felt like hours, each boy exchanging awkward glances with each other."Someone speak," Justin threw his hands up, and all three boys audibly sighed."Thank you for breaking the silence," Eli said. "Now, can we go over the plan one more time, or should we wait?" He cut a glance up towards Frank."No, we can trust him," Cameron caught his drift. "He's the closest thing to a father I've ever had.""If you say so," Eli sat back in the seat, clearly not trusting him just yet. Cameron sat back as well, reiterating the plan one last time, "So, we wait until my stepfather goes into his meeting, wait approximately ten minutes, then we sneak in. That should give us enough time to make sure the coast is clear." He took a deep breath and adjusted his seatbelt, "after we'
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EIGHT
"Where is his meeting?" Eli asked."I don't know," Cameron dejectedly admitted. "They don't tell me things."Justin rolled his eyes, "Looks like it's time to hit up Shane again." Cameron sighed his agreement. "I can ask him if you want."Cameron shook his head, "He'll likely only talk to me if anyone. He doesn't like to think about the fact that he could be betraying his father.""Hendrickson deserves it," Justin grumbled."I know, but Shane won't see it the same way." He led them out of the office, back down the hallway and into his room to regroup. "Here, let me see if he's home." He pulled up his HoloComm, clicked on the display of the manor layout. Shane was pacing in his room. "He's pacing." "That's odd," Justin observed."Why?" Eli asked.Cameron kept forgetting all of the things Eli didn't know. "Here's the rundown of President Hendrickson and his darling son, Shane: Hendrickson abuses me; verbally and physically." He lifted up the edge of his shirt where the bruise showed. It
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NINE
Sneaking up on Hendrickson was easier than they'd intended, and Cameron knew it had to be a trap. It was too easy. "This is a trap," Justin was voicing his thoughts. "This is definitely a trap.""I'm sure it is, but we don't really have a choice, do we?" Cameron pointed out."I guess not," he admittedly sadly.Eli was in the lead. He had an idea for the distraction, but he wouldn't tell either of them what it was. He just said, "It's going to be distracting, trust me."The basement was exactly how Cameron pictured it--a basement. It had concrete walls, nicks in the concrete, beige all around with storage boxes lying scattered throughout. The conference room, on the other hand, was magnificent. It had very high ceilings, Romanesque golden pillars that spindled into the clouds, with the men around the table being just as fascinating. They were all various races, arranged in a U around the table, with his stepfather sitting at what was clearly the head of the table.Eli smiled evilly, a
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