Jim X (Old Version)

Jim X (Old Version)

There's a total of 16 chapters (or 17 if you include the epilogue) in this story. Also, the story is divided into 2 parts:
Part 1: Treasures of Light (Ch. 1-8)
Part 2: Treasures of Darkness (Ch. 9-16)
Please enjoy!

Chapter 1

Marked Locations

Part 1: Treasures of Light

I always want to be better than everyone in every aspect: stronger, smarter, quicker, and even in small things. I dream a lot about being a man free from all human limits, a man capable of anything, a man fortunate enough to visit so many beautiful places in the world and maybe even outside of it. But I’m not Don Quixote so to be realistic, I’m still just a high school student almost done with 11th grade and of course, the logical thing to do would becontinuing high school, getting into college, and not dream too much. Still, I keep thinking, if only there was a way I could make those dreams come true… without getting hurt, right?
But obviously, dreams never come true easily even if you find and seize the perfect opportunity. Fortunately, mine started to come true...

We had a new student in my school (I was 17 by the way) who carried the answers to what I wanted all along. His name was Axel Lance. He was tall, blonde-haired, and very healthy looking. Right away, nearly all the girls in the high school went gaga over him. He also quickly became friends with the jocks. But most importantly, he was capable of so many things. Given that he was in most of my classes, in a week, he had beat me in table tennis (my favorite sport), got a 100 on a difficult AP Stat test, and even did better than me in Chinese! (I’m Chinese myself.) I had every reason to envy him, but we still got along quite well. I showed him directions of where his classes would be, we worked together in class, and sometimes ate lunch together.
One day, I saw a lot of girls walking past me in the hallway with disappointed looks. Apparently, Axel already had a girlfriend. I saw him alone by the staircases texting.
“Hi Axel,” I greeted him.
“Oh, hey Jim. What’s up?” he responded.
“They were all looking upset. The girls.”
“Well. That’s too bad. I’ve been dating her for a long time now.”
“She’s from your old school?”
“Nah. I actually met her at a nearby town.”
“Which reminds me, what made you decide to move?”
Axel sighed, “Uh, my old school got blown up.”
“Whoa. How did that happen?”
“A psychopath wanted to kill everyone there,” he replied sternly. “And I wasn’t there to help. That’s all you need to know.”
"What are you, a cop?" I asked. “Or…You’re not gonna blow this place up, are you?”
“Did I say I was the culprit?”
Then the bell rang. Axel looked at his class schedule.
“Crap. I’m late for economics. See ya, Jim!” he said.
“See ya.”
But he dropped something. It looked like a small hand drawn map on a folded sheet of paper. There were two marked locations. One was labeled “Wild Verdant,” the other “Water Haven.” (Wonder what business he has with these places) I thought.
“Hey Axel, wait! You dropped this!” I called.
After handing Axel back his map, I went to the library to do some research on the two places. Maybe these places may explain why Axel is capable of so much. If I go there, I might come back with more skills! Like, who knows? Maybe an easier time with APs? Actually be athletic and get surrounded by hot tomboys? Make more time for video games? ...Hey, I know! How about ruling the world?
However, when I Googled “Water’s Haven,” there were no results that matched that. But there were results for “Wild Verdant” when I Googled that. Based on what I read about it, Wild Verdant was a forest home to very hostile Native American Indians but very rich wood. The Verdant also had a sacred temple. There were a lot of carnivorous plants there too. It also stated that some people have wandered into those woods but never came back. Naturally, I knew I wasn’t going to go there ever, not to mention hearing my parents nag about it, but Axel must have went there and came back in one piece! (What a mysterious guy.) And then, the thought came to me. His secrets to being so perfect could just lie in that forest, namely the sacred temple! But if I told my parents I wanted to go, they would certainly say no.
Then again, they were going to leave the following weekend for an important family business though I was to stay home. In other words, I would be free to do pretty much whatever I want, including going to the forest! I could have asked Axel about the Verdant, but I didn’t see him again that day. By luck, the forest wasn’t too far away from town. I printed out a map marking its location. If I kept walking up the sidewalk in the north direction and then turn left I would be there. It was Friday, and the next day, I’m headed to Wild Verdant, or more specifically, the temple and its treasures! But little did I know how much trouble I was going to get myself into…

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