Chapter 9; Photron Energy

After a moment of conversing, the scientists moved over to the console in front of the orbs and began putting in some commands and flipping some switches causing the large machine to start to whirl and buzz.

“Do you know what this is?” Peter asked as he comes back to stand beside Levi who shrugs with a confused expression. “That’s a device called a Spectron.”

“Oh, I’ve heard about it.” He said with an excited smile and Peter raises a brow.

“So what do you know about it?” He asked and Levi turned to him as he explains.

“Not much. I read an article that it’s a device used to test the abilities of a Tron and classify them. But apart from that, no other information was given and I didn’t know it looked like…this.” He said, gesturing to the large and bulky structures, wires and valves around and in it.

A sudden buzzing sound was now heard and one of the scientists gives them a thumb-up. “It’s ready.”

“Alright.” Peter said as he collects Levi’s phone and ushers him onto a platform in front of the machine. A man pushes a button and the platform slowly rises, lifting Levi up from the ground and into the large glass orb.

He looks around in confusion before Peter speaks up. “Okay, Levi. It’s simple. Just put your arm in that hole to your right.” Levi turns to his right where a hole was seen and he reluctantly pushes his right arm, feeling the cool metallic internal structure. “Okay, good. Now, it’s going to sting a little but just try to relax.”

The hole suddenly closes down on Levi’s arm, making it impossible to move it and he turns to Peter with a raised brow. “You never said it would hurt.”

Peter shrugs with a smile. “You never asked.” He folds his arms and gestures to the scientists who nod and pushed in a command, causing the machine to whirl and buzz louder.

<Alright, Levi. My arm’s just stuck in this hole with what sounds like a bomb trying to go off around me. No need to panic…> He thought as the sounds became louder and louder. He closes his eyes and braces for whatever it is…when the machine suddenly goes quiet and he slowly opens his eyes in confusion. “Is that normal or-”

Something metallic suddenly clamps on his wrist and he grunts in pain, holding the glass frame with his other hand as a strong burning sensation seeps into his wrist before being slowly spread to the rest of his body.

“This isn’t fun…” He grunted as the burning sensation only seems to increase and the people watching began to see a faint blue energy beginning to release from Levi’s body…but as Levi gives out a shout, the glow disappears…just as blue electricity spikes out from every inch of his body meanwhile all Levi could see was the vision of a deep dark tube which several beams of colourful light moving through it.

“Lightning? Very fascinating.” A scientist said and Peter furrows his brow in concern as Levi continues to groan in pain just as the scientists then shut down the machine and the electricity from Levi fizzles away as Levi yanks out his hand with a relieved sigh. “I never thought I’d see a Lightning Tron.”

“Yes, they are very rare compared to others.” Another scientist commented and Peter stares at Levi who unconsciously rubbed his wrist but was shocked that there wasn’t any sign of burns or abrasion.

But what was there was… “Dope…” He said with a finger gliding across the slick blue-white metallic bracelet on his wrist with the Index logo on it, its slick design more updated compared to Peter’s band.

He holds it up to get a better look before noticing a blue glint on the glass in front of him and squints at it before realising that his eyes had changed to the blue-coloured iris even though he wasn’t using his powers currently.

The platform below him suddenly jolts before slowly descending and Levi walks up to Peter the moment he touches the ground. “Are my eyes going to stay like this now?”

Peter nods slowly as he gives Levi back his phone. “When you’re anonymous, you’re still in touch with both your human and tron origin. But once you’re fully awakened and unlock your true tron abilities…” He trails off as he removes his shades, revealing his still yellow-coloured iris. “You lose whatever piece of humanity you had left.” Levi gives a troubled look as he looks at his phone’s screen, the blue light from his eyes reflecting on its surface.

“Besides, your eyes are the least of your fashion problems.” Peter said with a glance at Levi’s head.

“What do you mean?” Levi quickly opens his camera app and switches to the front camera to use like a mirror when he sees it… “What… the…hell?” He mumbled in shock as his entire hair, even his eye brows had changed from its normal black to snow white.

Peter lets out a hearty laugh at Levi’s both shocked and confused face. “I forgot to mention that the abilities of some Trons can cause physical changes to the tron other than their eye colour. Right now, anyone looking at you will know you’re an Elementron.”

Levi sets his phone down and flashes Peter a confused look. “Elementron?”

Peter places his shades back on and chuckles before answering. “It’s one of the four classes of a tron. An elementron is a tron with the ability to manipulate one of the five elements.”

“So what’s my element?”

Peter grins as he answers. “Lightning.”

Levi punches a celebratory fist into the air. “Awesome… Well, once I learn how to use it.” He said with an embarrassed expression and Peter laughs for a moment before suddenly getting serious.

“I am a little surprised though. Lightning trons are the rarest of the Elementrons. In fact, it’s on the Index’s top ten rarest abilities.” Peter said. 

“Really?” Levi asked and Peter nods with a raised brow.

“If I’m right, I think they’ve been only…” Peter rubs his chin for a moment before answering. “… about 22 trons recorded trons since the war years ago.” Levi stares at Peter in shock who lets out a sigh. “At least, it’s good to see one lightning tron still alive.”

Levi freezes instantly and takes in a huge gulp. “Alive? Then are those other trons…” Peter nods sadly and Levi steps back a little shocked. “What happened to them?”

“The Web happened.” He places his hands in his pockets and takes a deep breath. “I was still in Tron Task Force then but I heard that the Web started to specifically hunt Lightning Trons and killed them all.”

“Why?”

Peter shrugs with a concerned stare. “No idea but…since then, we’ve never heard of another lighting tron…” He laughs as he throws an arm over Levi. “Until today! At least, once I report you to the head, they’ll have to forget about my little uh…‘vacation’. So thank you, Levi.”

Levi chuckles as he tucks his phone into his pocket. “Glad to help.”

Peter nods to the scientists before peering at Levi’s new Band. “Now let’s get you registered.” Levi glances at his band which seemed inactive compared to Peter’s. “Let’s move.” Peter said as he walks forward and Levi walks with him as they moved from the room back to the reception.

After some few word exchange, the receptionist asked Levi to place his hand and bracelet on a machine which began to scan it.

After about 30 seconds, the machine stops and Levi retracts his hand as the lady types on her computer before taking a device to scan Levi’s face. Then after that, she turns to him with a friendly expression. “Your name, please?”

“Levi West.”

After some seconds of typing…… “Okay, Mr West. You’re good to go.” As she said that, Levi’s bracelet makes a beeping sound and the blue outlines glowed.

“Whoa…” Levi said as he pushes down the Index logo and a holographic interface appears over his bracelet. “Awesome.” 

“Welcome Mr West.” Levi turned around in shock as voice rings in his ear but he doesn’t see anyone. 

“Who said that?” He asked and Peter gives him a hearty laugh.

“Relax, Einstein. The Band is connected to you. Meaning you can sync it to your eyes or ears for better experience.”

Levi turns back to the interface as the male voice speaks again. “Would you like a tutorial on usage of the Index Interface?” Levi grins at it in excitement before pressing down the Index logo causing the interface to shrink back into the bracelet.

Peter nods to the receptionist before ushering Levi out of the building with a side-glance at Levi who was excitedly inspecting his Band. “So it can never come off?”

Peter chuckles as he holds up his bracelet as well. “Yeah. The Band is completely embedded not just to your skin but your Matrix as well.”

“My matrix?”

Peter grins as he pats Levi’s back. “A concept for later. By the way, you won’t need your phone or laptop anymore. The Band can do all that stuff, plus there’re not allowed in the college.”

Levi raises a brow at him. “But you still have a phone.”

Peter smirks as he holds up his band. “My band is an old generation. It can perform the basics but that’s as far as it can go. So trons of my generation are allowed to have other devices. But yours can do all that and more so what’s the point?”

“Oh, come on. What am I supposed to do with my phone, laptop and tab now?”

“I can smash them for you.” Peter said with a laugh and Levi shakes his head with a displeased look.

“I’ll just ship them back home after I’ve transferred all my content. How much space do these things have, anyway?” Levi asked giving his Band another look and Peter tries to recall the capacity as he stares into the sky.

“I think it’s 50 Terabytes.” He said with a dismissive wave and Levi nods………before stopping abruptly when he actually processed what Peter just said.

“50 Terabytes?!!!” He shouted out in shock and Peter simply shrugs before continuing forward while Levi kisses the Band on his hand with an excited smile. “I think I’m in love.” Peter laughs as he opens his interface to flag down a car which drives them out into the road.

On the entire trip, Peter was lying down on the seats, fast asleep while Levi was going through the tutorial of his interface and mastering its uses. 

20 minutes go by and the car pulls up to a building. “We’re here.” Peter said as the door opens and he steps out with Levi closing his interface and following before staring in astonishment at the small yet expensive-looking bungalow. “Home sweet home.”

As the car pulls away, Levi turns to Peter in shock. “You live here?”

Peter laughs as he slaps Levi’s arm. “It is ‘my’ house. Come on.” He said as he walks up the steps and Levi follows with a smile on his face as they stepped through the automatic doors into an even more stylish living room. “You’re going to be living with me for a while before you go to the Tron College so…make yourself at home.” He said with a hand gesturing to the house and Levi nods as his eyes catches something.

“Oh, I will.” Levi said as he stared at the large 3-D screen with a glowing smile. 

Some hours go by and after Levi ate lunch, he heads over to his room where he found all of his stuffs and decided to begin transferring his files into his interface which, despite its high processing speed took a couple of hours.

Levi also learned that he couldn’t contact anybody with the interface even though he knew the phone number because the Index bans any call that doesn’t go to a registered Index worker most likely for confidential reasons but it’s a restriction for only new, unexperienced trons. 

It was now evening and Peter enters Levi’s room but he was too busy, playing a game on his interface to notice. Peter gives three loud raps on the door and Levi pauses the game to see Peter. “I can see you’ve already settled in.” Levi moves the interface to his side as he looks at Peter with a laugh. “It’s almost time for dinner but I want to show you something first.”

He motions for Levi to follow and he closes his interface as he follows Peter to the back of the house where another building was seen. 

He keys in the code on the door panel and Levi follows him into the large training ground with gym equipment and a large concrete platform for combat training. Peter turns to Levi and throws his arms out to everything around him. “Welcome to my gym.”

Levi places a hand on his hip and turns to the punching bags lined up beside him. “You’re going to train me?”

“Normally, you’d have to stay at least a year in a Tron Academy to get the knowledge on being a fully equipped tron. But after I reported that you single-handedly took on an army of Level 1 and 2 drals. Not to mention critically injured an A class threat like that Level 3 dral and its commanding holon… All with a barely awakened form… Let’s just say the higher ups were impressed.” 

Levi raises a brow at Peter with folded arms. “So… I got access to some kind of special treatment?”

Peter chuckles a little. “Something like that. Now that you’ve fully awakened, you’re even stronger now than before. So putting you in some Academy is basically redundant. The higher-ups asked me to teach you the basics.” He walks around a little, running his fingers on the devices he passes by. “Especially how to control your Photron energy.”

“Photron energy?” Levi asked as he moved forward and Peter turns to him with a smile.

“It’s what makes us Trons special. Where do you think that glow in your eyes come from?” He asked and Levi nods in agreement. “Every Tron has this energy coursing through them and all that energy comes from our core.” He said, placing a hand over his chest. 

“I read about that before. Drals have cores too, right?”

“That’s right. The core is what provides the energy that both drals and trons use to fight. And that’s why a saying goes; ‘you can never truly kill a tron until his core is broken’.” Peter said.

Levi stares at his hands with an attentive expression. “So this Photron energy is why I can do what I do and heal quickly?”

Peter snaps his fingers at Levi with a smile. “That’s right, Einstein. If you learn to control that energy, then you’ll be able to perform even better feats. And with a little practice, you’ll even be able to use your special lightning ability.”

Levi looks at Peter with a questioning look. “You said there were four types of trons.”

“That’s right.” He holds up fours finger as he explains. “First, we have the Elementrons who can manipulate one of the five elements of nature. Then there are the Mastrons, who have beast-manipulating abilities. Then there are the Transmutrons who can convert their Photron energy into different objects and weapons. Then the last are the Paratrons who are able to defy the normal laws of nature or even affect time-and-space.”

“Whoa.” Levi said with a more interested expression as Peter drops his hand and moves over to the weights section of the training room. “What type are you?”

“I’m a Paratron.” He said as he places several weights on a single bar and grinned as he turns to Levi. “I use my energy to surpass my physical body’s natural limits.” He shrugs as he grabs the bar with one hand and Levi stares in shock as he effortlessly raised the entire weight over his head. “Lifting 2,000 pounds is like a warm-up for me.”

“Dope.” Levi said as Peter gently places the weight down and walks up to him. “So how can I control my Photron energy?”

Peter laughs as he moves over to the combat platform with Levi excitedly following him. “It’s not going to be easy. It normally takes a tron years to fully get a grip on the energy flowing through them. Let’s see…” He suddenly stops and turns to Levi with an emotionless face. Levi awkwardly looks around as Peter continues to stare at him as if expecting something and after a long moment… “Did you feel anything?” 

Levi touches his body a little and narrows his eyes a little. “I did feel something… like how I could tell where the cores of the drals were when I was fighting them… but I can’t really tell for sure.”

“Oh boy.” Peter sighed as he suddenly took off his shirt. “Take off your shirt.”

“Why?” Peter swings his black shirt over his singlet and walks towards the bench as Levi began to remove his shirt as well.

He drops his shirt on the bench before explaining. “I’m going to force your photron energy out of your body.”

Levi finishes removing his shirt, leaving only his shorts on. “That sounds painful.”

Peter chuckles as he walks over to Levi who hangs his shirt on a machine before coming back to the platform to meet Peter. “Don’t worry. It’s not like the Spectron. Right now, there’s some photron energy coming out of you but it’s very small because your energy flow is stunted. So right now, I’m going to inject my energy into your body and cause your energy to properly flow through your matrix.”

Levi rubs his chin as he takes it all in. “So the ‘matrix’ is kind-of like the circulatory system in my body but it carries this energy instead of blood.”

Peter grins as he snaps his fingers at Levi. “Now before I start, I should warn you that this method of learning how to control your power is a little risky.”

“Little?” Levi asked with folded arms and a raised brow to Peter’s smiling face.

“When I force your energy out and you can’t learn to control it, it may damage your matrix either from excessive release or kill you when your core runs out of energy.” Levi gives him a scared/shocked look and Peter waves a dismissive hand at him. 

“Don’t worry about it. You’re smart so I’m sure you’ll pick it up. Besides, if it gets too much, I can always use my energy to shut yours down.” Levi looks down to the ground as he takes in all these information and processes them. “You can try and learn how to control it naturally but the college’s starting soon and this is the fastest way to learn. Besides, the Tron settlement’s still an option… if you don’t want to fight. So……you still in?”

After a brief moment…… “I’m in.” Levi sighs and Peter throws an arm over his shoulder with a laugh.

“Good. Now turn around and relax.” Levi follows and turns around, exposing his bare back to Peter who began to run his palm slowly over the surface. “You know; I did this to you when we first met in your house.”

Levi thinks back to that moment and recalled how Peter was staring at him so intensely at the dinner table that night, that his powers felt like surfacing in contrast with his command.

“So that’s when you knew I was a tron?” Levi asked and Peter lets out another laugh.

“Oh no. I knew it way long before that and you’re about…” He suddenly stops his palm in the spot in the middle of his back and smiles. “to find out how…” For a moment, Levi felt nothing, just an awkward beat of silence…then he began to feel a slight sensation entering his back from Peter’s hand and this sensation began to spread through his body until…

“Whoa…” Levi mumbled as he sees the deep-sky blue energy now flowing smoothly out of his body. It also gave him the sensation that he was now stronger, faster and more reactive.

Peter steps back from Levi who slowly turns his hands around and smile at the small waves of blue energy flowing from his hands. “This is awe…some…”

He trailed off as he turns around to see Peter and his glowing eyes widen in shock as Peter smiles at him in a very normal pose…but the intensity of the yellow energy releasing from his body was massive and overwhelming.

“You can finally see it, huh?” He chuckled as he pulled back the yellow energy back into himself.

“Is that your photron energy?”

“Correct.” Peter laughs with both hands on his hips. “This was how I knew you were a tron. You were just throwing your energy all over the place and didn’t even realise it. I sensed there was a tron in that village the moment I stepped out of that ship. And I’m guessing that’s how those drals found you too. The only reason you can see it now is because the energy is now properly flowing through your eyes, giving what we call the Photron Probe which is the ability to see Photron energy.”

“Cool.” Levi said before noticing that his energy was not as strong as before and he felt a little weaker than he did a moment ago. “Um, I’m guessing my energy’s not meant to flowing out this crazily.”

“You got that right. If you keep losing that much energy, you’re gonna drop dead.” Levi throws him a worried look and Peter laughs it off. “I’m kidding. You’ll get knocked out from the lack of energy far before death comes in the picture.”

“That does not make it sound better.” Levi mumbled as he stared at his hands still releasing a lot of energy.

“It’s alright. Just remember that Photron energy is like a stream. When nothing stops it, it goes anywhere and everywhere, so you have to control and conserve it.” Peter said as he comes over and gives Levi’s shoulder an encouraging tap. “And you might want to get started now before the dizziness kicks in.”

He suddenly turns and walks away while Levi turns in him in a little panicked state. “Then, how do I control it?”

Peter doesn’t glance back as he answers. “Sorry, kid but that’s something you have to figure out on your own. Good luck.” He said with a thumb-up flashed at him as he walks towards the other sections of the gym to work out.

Levi then stared at his hands and tightened them into fists. “Welcome to your new world, Levi.” He mumbled as he closes his eyes and enters a relaxing standing position. <This should be fun…> He thought as he began his training…

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