June 27th, 2012 -
You step outside of Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Hollywood, California with all of your friends, gathered there to watch “Abe Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” for Darrin’s birthday. It’s 11:14pm on a Wednesday. It is, at all appearances, a normal night. Just the next night in series that have, up until this point, comprised your normal, real life.
You hear someone say, “Okay, Darrin. The movie is over. What is it?” You remember, then, that for the past month Darrin has been talking about a big surprise that he wanted to unveil on his birthday.
Darrin smiles. You will, for a long time to come, remember that smile. “I think this is as good a time as any, now that everyone seems to be here.” Darrin reaches into his pocket. “The big surprise is…”
A light shines down, directly on Darrin. His smile fades. You’re all a little shocked, but a spotlight on the streets of Hollywood isn’t immediately cause for alarm. When Darrin slowly starts to rise into the air, however, you can’t help but be a bit shocked. Darrin looks terrified.
Someone grabs for him, but you see a dozen hands, black as velvet, wrapping around Darrin and holding him in the light. Where are those hands coming from? From the light? From within Darrin? It all happens so fast you’re never certain. Darrin rises faster and faster. The light seems to come from the heavens. You don’t see a source.
Everyone is screaming. Darrin is drifting out of sight. You look around and see dozens, maybe even hundreds of these pillars of light. Some are close by and others are miles away. All at one the pillars, including the one that pulled Darrin away, all seem to vanish.
High in the sky, in huge red letters, a number appears – “365”
A moment later the image in the sky changes to “364 23 59” and, from that moment, every sixty seconds, the clock in the sky has changed, counting down toward… something.
The news had the story immediately. Hundreds were ripped out of the street, and in some cases faded right through buildings. People were taken from their homes and their beds. It was called " The Hollywood Event " not just because Southern California had more victims than any other area, but because the vast majority of those missing seemed to be actors, musicians or other high profile media figures, including the President of the United States, Barack Obama.
Today is May 27th, 2013. There is one month left on the countdown. You have each coped with the loss of Darrin Cummings and the dramatic changes the world has seen in different ways. Some of you have ventured into fields of study you might not have previously, and have excelled in those fields to a remarkable degree. Some of you have begun training for whatever the end of the countdown might yield, and discovered within you an untapped potential. Some of you have been courted by organizations that that wished to act as your benefactor. Some of those organizations were able to talk you into some unusual “experiments.” And still some of you have had family members tearfully reveal to you a secret story of your origins that has changed everything about the way you look at the world.
You remain a very tight knit group of friends, perhaps tighter now that the world has changed and you with it. But the time for your personal journeys has come to an end. There is one month until The Sky Clock ends and your destiny begins today.