[DEFEAT. is Rendar Frankenstein's truest attempt at fiction. Presented in weekly episodes, the novella tells the tale of Daryl Millar - a hero who dies at the intersection of pop culture, science-fiction, war epic, and fantasy]
Gramps and Daryl walked down the hallways with resolve. Neither had any desire to spend another second in the school, a place that was supposed to foster reason and rational thought but was overrun by small-minded tyrants. Ah, just like the real world!
And also like the real world, Daryl had been punished for calling into question the legitimacy of a reigning power. With his balled-up fist, Daryl asked Brady Moore’s jaw Hey, what makes you think that you have the right to do whatever you want?! For these efforts, the teen was suspended for the remainder of the school day.
The bell rang and a cavalcade of bleary-eyed youngsters filed out of classrooms. They were tired and hungry, teeming with hormones and devoid of reason, underappreciated by their teachers and over-appreciated by their parents. Those that noticed Daryl slapped him on the back and thanked him for his early-morning contribution.
After all, word travels quickly in a high school. In terms of pure speed, the gossiping patterns of suburban youths ages fourteen to eighteen should be studied by telecommunications companies. Without any sort of genuine perspective, most of these students find no greater satisfaction than in hearing and spreading the tale of some rule’s infraction:
Who did what? Seriously? Does Becky know? She doesn’t? She has to. Well, yeah, I know she’s stupid but Jake is her boyfriend! And they’re serious! They’ve been a couple, for like, seven weeks! Well, I think it’s cool that he did that but he’s going to get in trouble and you have to realize that if it comes out that you were with him then you’re totally going to get busted as well, and there goes our big after-prom party that I finally convinced my dad…
And so on.
And so on.
And so on.
Swimming against the current of rumors and unfulfilled potential, both Daryl and Gramps saw a figure with whom they needed to speak. The relationship each held with this pretty young thing was unbeknownst to the other. For one of them, she was one of those rare teachers who was both intelligent and concerned. For the other, she was the daughter of a friend who had been known and looked after for decades.
Worlds apart and yet within the same hemisphere.