Title: Metatron: The Mystical Book
Author: Lawrence St. John
Publisher: Imajin Books
Genre: YA Fantasy
Author: Lawrence St. John
Publisher: Imajin Books
Genre: YA Fantasy
Thirteen-year-old Tyler Thompson is on the verge of becoming a superhero, but he must prove himself so he can earn the remainder of his superpowers and fulfill his destiny.
When his grandfather, Benjamin, is held prisoner at AREA 51, where the eternal powers are presumed to be hidden, Tyler attempts to penetrate the base’s heavy security. However, Dr. Mason Payne, the evil scientist who killed Tyler's father, has insidious plans of his own.
Hunted by an unknown entity, Tyler races against the clock to retrieve the superpowers, rescue his family and help the others who are depending on him. And when all hope seems lost, help comes in a power he didn’t know he possessed—a mysterious weapon known as The Mystical Blade.
If Tyler Thompson had known how tough it was to be a superhero, he might never have gotten involved in the first place. Sure, it was cool having Flash speed and super vision and all that, but there was a lot of pressure, and you couldn’t tell anyone. Not to mention that every time he went out he took his life in his hands and the whole thing was exhausting. Who knew that superheroes got tired? He wasn’t sure if being a superhero was a gift or a curse.
So when he heard a cry on the way home from another night of whupping Las Vegas bad guys, he wasn’t exactly in the mood for more trouble. In fact, he was tempted to ignore it. But superheroes never ignore people in trouble, no matter what. And while he wasn’t one hundred percent superhero yet, he’d never get there if he didn’t do his duty.
There it was again, a piercing, high-pitched cry from above, this time followed by the distinct sound of two loud gunshots reverberating off the high-rise buildings. A split second after that, there came the horrific wail of someone in severe pain. Tyler wondered if such noises really could wake the dead, and an image of his dad flickered through his mind. At least his dad’s murderer, Dr. Mason Payne, the evil scientist who had tried to kill him too, was safely in jail.
But there was no time for musing. From Hacienda Avenue Tyler looked up at the multi-story Mandalay Bay parking garage and spotted someone bending backwards over a concrete wall. The person’s arms were hanging downward, creating the impression that they were preparing to dive backwards. Then a pair of glasses and a set of keys dropped and landed in the flower bed at the base of the structure.
In a flash Tyler was at the top floor of the garage. With his heart racing, he hid behind a cold and damp concrete partition, then peeked out. About ninety feet away he caught a glimpse of a parked silver-colored BMW 760 with the driver’s side door open. Two tall, stocky men were standing behind it. Tyler ducked back behind the partition, threw back his black hood and removed his ski mask so he could wipe away an eyelash. Another thing they didn’t tell you about being a superhero. Tyler muttered under his breath, pulled his mask back over his face and flung the hood over his head just as a rush of adrenaline flooded his body.
He’d pay for this later, but it didn’t matter because everyone was counting on him. He’d made a promise to his dad, and he wasn’t about to let him down. His mom, brother and sister would be expecting big things from him, and Kendall, Master Tanaka and his friend Gabriel were all watching him. Most of all, there was God, who’d given him these powers for a reason and who was surely expecting a lot from a thirteen-year-old boy, even one who had Flash speed, an impenetrable force field and an extraordinarily high intellect. But he couldn’t think about all that now. The world was in trouble, and he had to fix it.
He looked again, and now the men were carrying pry bars. With his enhanced vision, he could also see handguns stuck in the waistbands in the back of their pants. From out of the shadows, he began creeping towards them just as one of them happened to see him out of the corner of his eye. The man backhanded the other, whispering loudly, then pointed and said, “Hey, boss, take a look. We got company.”
Tyler crossed his arms and took a defiant stance. The man roared with laughter. “What’s this, a vigilante?”
The other guy smirked. “You mean a wannabe superhero.”
Tyler stood his ground.
“Hey, buddy,” the boss hollered in Tyler’s direction. “Superheroes don’t exist. They’re only in comic books and movies.” Both guys practically busted a gut laughing and giving each other high-fives.
Unfazed, Tyler yelled, “Drop the guns and put your hands up.” What a cliché. Sometimes he sounded so silly to himself.
“Hey, he sounds like a kid,” the non-boss said. The men began laughing again, this time almost crying.
“Shoot him,” the boss ordered.
There was silence. “But he’s only—”
Angry now, the boss practically barked. “Do it before he gets any closer and can identify us.”
Immediately the other guy pulled his gun from his waistband and fired two rounds at Tyler. Like magic, Tyler evaded the bullets, which were ricocheting off pillars and flying all over the place, without losing a stride as he kept approaching the men. “Is that all you got?” he yelled back.
“What the—” one of the men mouthed. He aimed at Tyler again, then squeezed off four more rounds, but Tyler evaded the bullets with ease. He ran using his Flash speed, then, standing almost face to face with the bad guy, performed a high-impact inside forearm block, which released the man’s grip on the gun just as he was firing another round.
This time, the bullet missed Tyler’s ear by a hair. The gun flew up towards the ceiling, then slid across the parking garage floor. The man began throwing a flurry of punches, but Tyler easily deflected them. Still, he must have known some martial arts because the next thing he did was throw various kicks. But Tyler had had enough and gave the man a penetrating front kick to his sternum, then a smashing roundhouse kick to his temple, knocking him out.
By that time, the boss had sprung open the trunk of the BMW to reveal two large metal cases with “FR23” written on them. As Tyler approached, the boss glanced down at his pry bar, then swung it at his head three times, as if he were swatting at flies, just missing him by fractions of an inch on each attempt.
“Hey! You little punk!” he yelled as Tyler executed an outside block while sliding first his hands, then his arms around the big man like a snake, locking his arms to his body. Acting like a human boa constrictor, Tyler applied pressure until the man dropped the pry bar, which clanked while bouncing off the floor. Tyler quickly placed the man in a wrist lock and guided him to a kneeling position. The man grunted, then screamed in pain. Tyler performed a knife strike to his neck, rendering him helpless. Then he reached under his black hoodie and pulled out a set of nylon flex handcuffs. He threw both men in the backseat of the BMW and cuffed them together.