Spring. The time of year when flowers begin to bloom, animals awaken from hibernation and the seeds of revolution come to fruition. Levi Ketterling strolled down the well trimmed sidewalks of Rambling Springs, a quiet cul-de-sac 30 miles outside of Little Rock, Arkansas near the town of Conway. He couldn't hear the mowers or the sounds of nature awakening around him thanks to his ear buds. He never went anywhere without them nor his mp3 player or the battery charger strapped to his wrist. Music had become Levi's everything, his sole reason to exist. Without it he was nothing but a thin and plain boy with no friends or real familial connections. With it, that was a different story. With music, Techno in particular, Levi was powerful. His new family believed so too and with his Fortissimo comrades the world would soon discover that he had a right to be. The first to learn this fact would be those in front of him at this moment. Drawing out the Glock 9mm from his waistband Levi calmly walked to the center of the turnaround, gun loosely held by his waist and waited, his head bobbing along to the music that fueled his passion.
~Three years ago~
Levi discovered the nature of his Staccato abilities upon entering high school three years ago. Growing up as an abused foster child Levi escaped into the internet and techno to distance himself from the physical and emotional pain he suffered at the hands of his foster siblings and the avoidance of his foster parents. School also proved challenging since there wasn't much of a tech clique at his school and as a result Levi was targeted and became the "loner kid". One morning as he was idly listening to a song in the library, leaning back on the chairs back legs, he began to feel different as the song continued and discovered only as it was finishing that he was unconsciously balancing on only one chair leg. Of course upon the song ending his balance wavered and he pitched back onto the floor.
After experimenting with his discovery, Levi felt powerful, in control, better than he had in his whole life. He began listening to music as long as he was awake, editing tracks together so he only had one long audio file to allow his Staccato ability to continue relatively uninterrupted. As you can imagine, given this incredible gift while your brain is developing social and logical skills can warp an individual who doesn't have the proper guidance. He resented sleeping as well but forced himself to or he would become too tired to enjoy his birth given talents. As more and more people learned of those born with Staccato abilities a prejudice began to develop. Those without the ability would look fearfully at those with it. Others would become angry at the possibility of destroyed property or person and would do their best to drive off the altered human. Imagine having to deal with such prejudicial treatment every day with the intensity of emotions that are cultivated by teenagers. Naturally Levi could only take so much.
One day when a particularly bitter student saw Levi at his locker he approached Levi and began berating him and pushing him up against the lockers. Normally Levi would just wait until the abuse was interrupted by the class bell or until the bully grew bored with Ketterling's lack of response. The bully decided to go for Levi's mp3 player and that's when Levi snapped. Gripping the boy's wrist Levi pulled the bully towards him sharply and moved to the side at the same time causing the bully's face to slam into Levi's open locker door. Dazed the student attempted to strike Levi but found that he had already again moved to the side and found a book, quickly snatched from his own locker, crashing into his already hurt nose, breaking it. The sheer pain of such a quick and unexpected attack put a panic into the student who then proceeded to flail out in an attempt at retribution. Yet again he could not land any sort of hit and before things could progress any further Levi lashed out with a kick into the side of the student's knee causing it to bend in the wrong direction, crippling the boy. As the student lay gripping his ruined leg the stream of students that had been blissfully walking by, ignoring the initial confrontation, only 15 seconds ago had frozen in place. Shocked. Scared. Appalled. These were the emotions Levi could see on their faces. They ignored him before he had brought down his tormentor in a matter of seconds, now they feared him. He felt a sense of power and superiority before he ran out of the school, never to return.
Levi spent much of his life afterwards perfecting the use of his Staccato ability and developing a belief that he was gifted and blessed. Blessed with this mutation that had helped him rise above the normal masses and attain the attention and respect he deserved. After deserting his foster home Levi used his Staccato ability to strong arm those weaker into providing him with what he needed. Shaking down drug dealers for money and avoiding the police with his techno fueled free running. Before long his name began to show up more and more on the internet, due to his own idealistic postings on forums and message boards, and local newscasts covering his law breaking. Like minded Staccato users soon flocked to him seeking camaraderie, money, fame or the chance to make a change in the only matter they saw fit. Force. Levi corralled these individuals and created Fortissimo whose goal, like the musical sign it was named after, would grow louder and more noticeable until they could no longer me ignored. Then they would take over and recreate the world into what they believed was a just and equal world. A world ruled by Staccatos.
The final seconds ticked down and the song changes. Raising his arm up Levi fires a shot, freezing the neighborhood in their tracks. A few people scream in alarm but most don't even have the chance to do that as groups of men and women rush into the cul-de-sac from the surrounding woodland. Homes are forcibly entered and those who resist are subsequently subdued and humbled before the vicious blitzkrieg. One by one, families are brought to the center of the street before Levi. Some have wounds from resisting but most are scared and frightened, looking to their neighbors and family as if someone will come up with a solution to this horrible event.
"All the houses are clear now Chief." reports a stocky woman blonde as she falls in behind Levi.
"Thank you Amelia." Ketterling replies as he removes an ear bud. "And thank you all for joining me here on this grand day." he continues looking at both captives and Fortissimo members alike.
"Today we are here to witness a beginning. A grand beginning that will not be forgotten or ignored." Looking at each member of the cul-de-sac in turn Levi announces, "Among you are Staccatos. Some of you may already know this and some may not. Those who do treat it as commonly as someone from another state or of another race, but this is wrong! We Staccatos are not like you. You run-of-the-mill humans. We were born to become greater than we are expected to be. Greater than the garden variety 'contributing member of society' we all are taught to be." Levi slowly makes a circuit of the captives in front of him. The members of Fortissimo listening with rapt attention, they had planned and anticipated the start of this all with unbridled excitement and were now on the doorstep of realizing their own hard work and visions.
Brandishing his pistol as he speaks out "So my brothers and sisters I posit to you a question." Stopping where he began Levi turns, with gun in hand, and asks "Will you join me in the creation of Discordia? The creation of a land ruled by Staccatos, where we will no longer fear judgement or prejudice, where we are the ones with power." Levi looks to the first member of his captive congregation and asks, "Will you help realize this dream with me?"