In front of me, across Sunset Blvd. there was a bank. I didn’t know what kind, the signage had fallen long ago but the dual ATMs set into the wall were clear markers. The glass doors were broken and I hurdled through looking for the vault. I took another ten steps, pulled the pin on my grenade and threw it at the entryway. It exploded as the Fetch appeared throwing him back out onto the street.

I found the vault, pushed the emergency lock button, and threw myself inside. L.A. was one of the few places to still have a power plant. It was solar and didn’t provide much power but most places weren’t using it anymore. I hoped they hadn’t thought to turn off the emergency power to the vault. It slid closed behind me and the heavy metal posts sunk home into the walls. It would be at least twenty-four hours before it opened again, maybe up to seventy-two.

It was the safety deposit vault. Everything of perceived value had been looted long ago, all the drawers were open. None of them looked like they had been forced so it had probably been by the bank president. But there were piles of discarded items they hadn’t seen the value in.

An electric candle that had the picture of a dead loved one on it. One box was filled with dehydrated astronaut food and pictures of the team that had developed them. In a bigger box was a tuxedo worn by Sean Connery as James Bond. It made a great blanket. And there was this empty notebook that you’re reading out of now. And as I write this, the counter on the vault door is falling below twenty minutes.

This is the end for me. Don’t get upset, I told you in the beginning there was no hope for me. I couldn’t succeed; I couldn’t win. And rightly so. No amount of suffering can help me pay for the mistakes I have made, the misery I have brought into this world. But you’re a different matter. Nobody hates you; nobody is looking to collect a bounty on your head. Unless they do, unless they are, and if that is the case, if this journal happens to end up in a jerk’s hand, realize you’re a jerk and walk away. But if you’re not, if you’re just a normal person, then you have a chance to make it better.

I’ve left the charm in the back of the journal, it will help you kill Fetches. I’ve also left a map to the camp where Marissa is. She’s been studying magic and hopefully she’ll be able to help you kill Fetches without killing their humans. Take as many people as you can, recruit as many as you can, you need soldiers. I couldn’t lead anyone, but you need to. You are the greatest and last chance humanity has to survive. I messed up my chance, don’t follow my lead.

Pete Mersill

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