Alejandro had never seen so many MAJORS in the same place. Hundreds of them rushed from on boarding gate to another, with bags, suit cases, whatever they wanted to bring with them. Whole families thronged around the Ferrand, oblivious off them, caring only for their own problems. Some kids gawked at him, but most of the MAJORS barely glanced in his direction. The Minor found it so strange, it was almost as if he had entered another world, where seeing someone like him wasn’t that incredible an occurrence.
In fact, he had spotted at least a dozen of his kind in San Francisco International Airport. All of them had been carried by their friends or relatives. Usually, Alejandro would have frowned at such a vision, but just this time, he couldn’t help but admit that it was the safest way to travel here. He was sitting on Alaric’s shoulders, just like a kid on his father’s, while his twin carried his small bag… well, small for a MAJOR.
Alejandro had packed everything he had deemed important: his favorite books, his computer, his drawing and painting material and his clothes. Not much really, but he couldn’t carry his whole room with him from Old Creek to New Orleans. Leaving his family and his hometown made him really nervous, but Shannon had made an offer the Ferrand Family simply couldn’t pass up. She had offered to pay for two full scholarship at Benjamin Franklin High School in the Big Easy, for Alejandro and Lindsey.
BFHS had been one of the most enthusiastic backer of Shannon’s rebranded “Equal rights for Minors” campaign, voicing its opinion that allowing Minor students in the school system would only allow for a rise in class attendances and results from the MAJORS while allowing the nation to tap into the vast potential of its Minor population. The Headmaster, James X. Gordon, had stated, when journalists had expressed that surprise it his enthusiasm for Fire-Brand campaign that, as a defendant of civil rights, he couldn’t pass up an opportunity to help a disfranchised community.
“Minors are probably the sole community where color blindness does exist for the general MAJOR population. They are all equally seen as inferiors, no matter their skin tone or place of birth. It is time to change that for good” had been his firm stance, reiterated several times.
Alejandro’s family had followed Shannon’s campaign, and when the giantess had contacted them with this offer, they had chosen to accept it. Lindsey had hesitated, because she was clearly smitten by Izzellah Ivory and wanted to go to Winton High to meet her… and brag about her growth spurt, since she had shot up to 2m53 (8f3) in the last few months. But a paid scholarship was simply to great to pass up and so, the older and younger of the Ferrand children were moving to New Orleans.
“Are you okay son?” asked Jules, glancing at his Minor boy, whose head was resting on his brother’s hair.
“A little nervous Dad. I had never seen this amount of MAJORS in my life…”
“I understand that it may be a little… overwhelming, but everything will be fine, I swear. Security is very tight in airports and I highly doubt that anyone would dare to snatch you while we are here.”
“That’s not exactly a great way to reassure me Dad” laughed Alejandro. “It just means that I’ll be abducted once you’ll leave!”
“Don’t joke about it” sternly replied his Mom. “It is not funny.”
Ever since he had agreed to go to the Crescent City, Ofelia had been tense and harsher with him. Alejandro knew that it was her way of dealing with her rampant fear for him. She had admitted it weeks ago. She was terrified of letting him move so far away and he could understand why. It was one thing to let him move out of Old Creek if he had wanted to go to a close location, like Winton Heights or San Francisco, each barely hours away by car.
But New Orleans was halfay across the country, and they hadn’t any family there. Sure, there would be the Matthewson, Andrew, Derek and even Alexis had pledged to help Lindsey and her brother adapt to their new lives, but still… Alexis wasn't known for liking Minors much, and the Ferrand doubted that the very disfunctional family from New Orleans could really be of great help, at times. Thus, for his Mom, it remained dangerous and frightening. Especially with Shannon there.
“You can’t be sure she is all right” had said Ofelia, several times.
“Mom, we talk to each other’s. She is doing great with her campaign, and I assure you that her therapist is one of the best, I’ve done my work and stalked him, and like you guys apparently always do!”
“I do not care about his credentials! What I care is that Shannon has proven to be unstable. I know you like her, love her even, but I’m afraid that your attraction may blind you. What would you do if she lost it again? Who would be here to help you?”
“Lindsey would” had replied Alejandro, knowing full well how ridiculous it sounded.
“Your sister is growing like a weed, and she hasn’t even reached puberty, yes. But even with her newfound love of weight-lifting and bodybuilding, I highly doubt that she could ever hurt Shannon. Her body density is probably so great that it would take several strong MAJORS to stop her if she went on a rampage.”
“But she won’t go on a rampage Mom. I know it. Please, let me try it. If it doesn’t work, I can always come back in a month or two!”
“Fine…” had relented Ofelia, clearly displeased.
“So, do you know what courses you’ll follow at your School bro?” asked Alaric.
Contrary to Lindsey, who had had to choose in advance the courses she wanted to pursue, which, to nobody’s surprise, involved a lot of science, especially in fields related to biology and new technologies, Alejandro had been granted the right to think about all of it until the beginning of school year… which was in one week. It hadn’t been so difficult for him to find his ideal courses, but selling them to his family would be harder, so he had played it coy.
“More or less…” he replied, refusing to commit himself.
“Come on, spit it out already!” laughed Alaric, playfully jumping up and down to shake his brother, his left hand never leaving Alejandro’s back.
“Okay, okay! Stop it, I yield!”
“History and Literature” blurted Alejandro.
“What? No way! You’ve got to have the same classes than me!” almost yelled Lindsey.
“And why so?”
“Because you won’t be able to roam around the campus freely.” She said as if it explained everything.
“And why wouldn’t be able to do that? I thought that BFHS had a policy to help Minors become integral parts of the student’s community!?”
“Well, duh! Of course they do, but they aren’t crazy enough to let you roam freely around the school. If they did that, the Feds would come down on them and close the whole campus down in two days” explained Lindsey, quite haughtily. “You’ll have to take the same classes than me.”
“Yeah, dream on. I won’t go to your evil genius courses, thank you very much.”
“What? What will you do then?” replied Lindsey, clearly rattled.
“I’ll pick the classes I want, and the school will find me a chaperone or something.”
“Are you crazy!?” shrieked Ofelia, attracting some attention before the crowd of MAJORS around them returned to its occupations. “I can’t let you in the hand of some unknown MAJOR who… who could kidnap you or something!”
“If I pretend to be bonded with Lindsey, which is the plan, I risk nothing, you all said so yourself.”
“It will only work if you’re with her at all time, son” remarked Jules. “Otherwise, the other teenagers will just understand that your mind is closed and not bonded.”
“Wonderful… so you’re telling me that I either have to endure years of studies I don’t want to do or I can’t go, when the school is only open half a day, three times a week, for Minors? Are you serious?”
“Don’t be like that ‘Rando…” whined Lindsey, conscious that he was getting agitated and angry at it. “I’ll help you with the homework. You’ll see, you’ll be incredible at it!”
“I don’t want to be incredible at it. I don’t want to be a scientist or an engineer or whatever…”
“When you were a kid, you dreamed of being like me” softly said Ofelia.
“Yes, when I was a kid, too stupid to understand that I can’t hold a candle compared to MAJORS’ abilities in those fields” sourly replied Alejandro.
“You’re belittling yourself too much, my little miracle” said his Mom. “You’re afraid because you struggle more than us. But it’s only natural and not shameful at all. You’re used to compare yourself with MAJORS, but that’s only because you know of no other Minor, save Miss Ivory. It is only logical that you would think yourself unable to compete with us… but sweetie, you are probably one of the most brilliant and educated Minor out there!”
“Mom’s right bro” interjected Alaric. “You’ve got talents. Perhaps you won’t be able to digest everything the teachers will say at once, but with Lindsey and some friends you'll find there you will be perfectly fine.”
“I still want to learn more about history and all” stubbornly said Alejandro.
“No one told you couldn’t do that ‘Rando. You never needed studies to be a history nuts anyway” joked Lindsey.
“Yeah, but with a High School’s time of preparation, I could… I don’t know, go to a University, then join an expedition in the Caribbean or something…”
“You want to go and visit Mu, right?” laughed Alaric. “You do know that MAJORS there still eat Minors as part of some ancient rituals, right?”
“Yeah… but the Queen of Mu always takes Minors for husbands and they are treated like royalty! They have power of life and death even over MAJORS!” replied Alejandro, smiling at his family.
“As if you needed to go that far to be treated like that” said Jules with his dry humor. “You just have to wave your hand for a certain MAJOR to be at your beck and call.”
“Jules!” said Ofelia, a little scandalized.
“What? You know it’s true. Shannon is heel over head for him.”
“Perhaps not that much Dad.”
“Yes, Al’, just that much. Ask your older brother.”
“Dad’s right… but it would be funnier to add the risk of cannibalism to a relationship, don’t you think?”
“Don’t even joke about it…” growled Ofelia.
“So, here we are. The Gates of Hell” said Alejandro.
“That’s just the place where we part way bro.”
“Shut up. Don’t ruin my fantasy.”
“I’m the sole Minor in Old Creek. Of course I’m crazy.”
The whole Ferrand family smiled at that. It was an old joke, but it always worked on them. Alejandro wasn’t really sure of why, but it help to put them –and him- at ease when tensions were mounting, as was the case right now.
“So… it’s here that we will have to say goodbye…” begun Jules, his voice suddenly constrained, as if his throat was sore.
“Well, we can also stay here and miss our plane” replied Alejandro with a wry smile.
“No thank you. Those tickets cost us a fortune” replied Ofelia with the faintest of smile on her face. Shannon had bought the tickets for them.
“So…. Do I have to jump from your shoulders Al’?” asked Alejandro as his brother didn’t seem to want to put him back on the ground.
“No…” grunted the MAJOR.
In one swift movement, Alejandro’s twin brought him to his chest and before the Minor could react, he was engulfed in a powerful embrace. He could hear Alaric’s heart pumping his blood in his immense body, and the powerful arms surrounding him were shivering a little. The colossus was clearly nervous and Alejandro tried his best to hug him back. Finally, after almost a minute, his brother released him and brought him back to his face.
“Hey? Why the tears bro?” asked Alejandro, very softly.
“I don’t want you to go…” revealed Alaric. “The last time you went somewhere without me… you almost… almost became Mac Ferlan’s plaything…”
“Not true. The last time, I almost became Shannon’s plaything” tried the Minor, but his joke didn’t bring a smile on his twin’s face.
“You know what I mean. If… if something happens to you in New Orleans… I don’t think I could endure it…”
“Nonsense. I’ll be safe; I’ll be very careful, and I may even take the same courses than Lindsey. If I feel like it” added the diminutive teenager.
“You’re stubborn” meekly replied Alaric.
“Well, yeah. But it’s true for this whole family so… Come on, by guy, I should be the one worrying about you!”
“A bumpkin like you moving to Los Angeles? There is like 99,99% of chances that you’ll end drunk, drugged, broke or in jail in two weeks! Without me to keep you on the straight and narrow path, your terrible tendencies will come back!”
“It’s a secret! I can’t talk about them, or they’ll grow stronger!” replied Alejandro, taking a posh British accent to sound really ridiculous.
“Moron” laughed a little Alaric.
“I know. But seriously, be careful out there. I’ll have my hand full reigning in Lindsey.”
“Hey!” screamed his little sister.
“What, you know it’s true! You’re entering puberty, you’ll need someone to be sure you won’t make crazy mistakes.”
“Yeah, sure, whatever…”
“Lindsey, don’t talk like that to your brother” said Ofelia.
“Especially when he is right” added Jules with a chuckle.
“I’m joking Lindsey. Well, half joking. Alaric, can you give me your brother a moment?”
“Yeah, sure Dad.”
Alejandro was passed from his brother’s arms to his father and he felt his Mom’s hand catching him and her torso pressing on his back.
“You’ll be careful out there son” said Jules, quite seriously.
“Always Dad; I swear.”
“And you’ll listen to your sister when it comes to activities outside the school” added Ofelia.
“And if I want to do something with Shannon?” asked Alejandro, warily.
“If you become a couple, officially, I won’t have any problem with you being more free, sweetie… but in the meantime, be good for your sister, okay?”
“Perfect… Goodbye Alejandro” added Ofelia, kissing his cheek, while his father kissed his forehead.
Once dropped on the floor, Alejandro followed Lindsey to the treadmills where baggage were to be left. His sister’s was enormous, at least four time the size of his poor bag and he wondered what she had packed here. Surely half her new gym material. His sister had considerably changed since her encounter with Sabrina Rodriguez and Izzellah Ivory.
Somehow, she had become addicted with bodybuilding and, where she once had lean muscles, the kind that MAJORS developed without even trying, she now had massive bulges, especially in her arms and legs. He had tried to understand why she wanted to badly to become a muscle head when she pursued scientific studies, but she had refused to explain. She only said that she needed to do that. He highly suspected that she wanted to be strong enough to always win a fight.
The Rodriguez girl had almost won, in fact only Lindsey’s superior size had allowed her to have the upper hand in their fight, some months ago. And from what Izzellah had told him, Sabrina was entering her growing phase and was filling out and reaching new sizes which were quite impressive. Lindsey probably knew it and wanted to keep an upper hand, just in case they had a rematch.
Alejandro found her new body kind of disturbing. Not that it was ugly, his little sister was beautiful, all MAJORS were in fact. Even Alaric’s terrible scar somehow added to his looks instead od detracting from it. At least, that’s what Cherry had told him when he had stumbled on them, naked and smelling of sweat and sex, in the kitchen, when Ofelia, Jules and Lindsey had been visiting New Orleans to find a flat.
Cherry had been quite embarrassed and Alejandro had promptly rushed to his room, coming out only when they were clothed. In the months since his encounter with Izzellah, the Overrock girl had filled out quite incredibly, becoming one of the curviest and sexiest woman he had ever seen, meaning that a considerable queue of suitors came to the Minor by the Sea to try and woo her. She had also skyrocketed in height, reaching 3m07 (10f), while Alaric had taken ten centimeters and reached 3m25 (10f7), apparently his final size, according to doctors. She had let her hair flow below her shoulders now and her goth make up was applied a lot more professionally, making her really hot.
From what he understood, Alaric and her had had an affair for weeks. Another one, they had been at it for years now. Nothing too serious, just sex to release some pressure, but it had made him quite self-conscious, especially when they both had offered him to take part in it. Alaric hadn't even looked embarrassed, the idea to have sex alongside is twin was apparently quite normal for him. And even if the idea of getting a fellatio from Cherry while Alaric pounded her had brought some really vivid wet dreams afterwards, he had refused. While he fantasized about that kind of things, he really didn’t want to be part of a threesome, especially with his twin.
“Put your baggage on the treadmill” said a voice, bringing Alejandro back to the present. “Thank you, may I see your tickets? Thank you.”
The MAJOR taking care of them seemed incredibly bored. It was a young man… well, at least Alejandro suspected he was young, but he couldn’t really tell, he may have been just over twenty or nearing sixty, for all he knew. His size was impossible to gauge from down below, his desk hiding it anyway, and apparently, he hadn’t noticed the Minor… or he didn’t care much about him.
“You’ll have to accompany your Minor throught the special entrance on your right” he said to Lindsey. “He’ll be scanned to be sure that he isn’t used to transport drugs, weapons or illegal material. Don’t worry, it won’t be long, he’ll just had to dress down to his underwear.”
“What? Why!?” couldn’t help but yell Alejandro.
“Standard procedure now, sir” replied the bored giant. “Blame the Matthewson and her campaign… because of her, we all have much more work to do…”
Without a word, Lindsey caught his hand and brought him to the special entrance, preventing him from shooting back at that moronic MAJOR.
“Don’t waste your breath, he doesn’t deserve it” mumbled his sister.
Near the gate, two massive security officer, one man and one woman, stood ready. They welcomed them with a smile and directed Lindsey to the other side of the door. Alejandro was brought near a massive machine, with an entrance just large enough for a Minor to squeeze in.
“Do you prefer that I or my colleague monitor your scan sir?” asked the man.
“I don’t care one way or another” replied Alejandro. “But I would like to point out that I have a prosthesis. Should I remove it too?”
“No sir” said the man. “It won’t be necessary. You may drop your clothes in a closest inside the machine. Don’t worry, there is no camera to spy on you in there. Go when you’re ready.”
Without a word, Alejandro entered the scanner. He hated it immediately. It wheezed and biped just like the hospital’s machines after the Incident. Still, he quickly removed his coat, pull-over, t-shirt and jeans. Once only in his socks and underwear, he walked toward the designated area, a massive crow painted on the floor and waited for the scan to end. It took almost five minutes, but finally, a green light bulb flashed and he heard the officer’s voice in the speakers.
"All clear sir. You may put back your clothes. Thank you for your cooperation!”
“You’re welcome” mumbled Alejandro.
Exiting the machine by a new door which had opened in its flank, he found himself in the waiting area for their flight, with Lindsey rushing toward her and getting him back in her arms.
“Was everything okay?” she asked, clearly agitated. “You were in there so long!”
“Don’t worry Little Lind, everything was fine. It’s bothersome, but I guess that if Minor aren’t ignored, it’s the kind of thing we must deal with” he replied, smiling at his sister.
“So, what do we do now?” asked the young MAJOR.
“I suppose we wait for the boarding staff to call us? I’ve never taken a plane, you know?”
“I guess you’re right. I’m just nervous…”
“Hey, why wouldn’t we go and say goodbye at Mom, Dad and Al’? I’ve read that it’s possible to wave at them at least, even from there.”
“Yeah, great idea!” chirped Lindsey, rushing toward the glass wall separating the waiting area from the rest of the airport.
As expected, the rest of the Ferrand Family was there and they waved at each others for long minutes, sending kisses and smile at each other. Finally, the airport’s speakers roared to life, putting on end to their long farewells.
“The MAJORS with Minors for flight n° 1544 for New Orleans, please report to Gate 1. I repeat, the MAJORS with Minors for flight n° 1544 for New Orleans, please report to Gate 1.”
Tightening her grip on him, Lindsey rushed toward the aforementioned Gate and Alejandro felt a trepidation in his body. Their new lives were truly beginning.