I was sore.
Despite my recently acquired wounds, my malnourished bodily state, the searing pain from the stitches in my shoulder, and my general discomfort with the situation at hand, Colonel Wilde had immediately passed me on to training.
Training was grueling. I had spent the entire afternoon at a station learning the function of assorted weapons and gadgets, and how to perfectly prime, construct, care for, and occasionally defuse each. But this was not even the worst of it. During the monotony of training on several occasions, I was subjected to spontaneous masquerades of emergency situations, along with my fellow trainees. The most recent drill was the most terrible for certain, I had somehow ended up underneath the feet of several other initiates. I was abandoned, left dazed and bruised, but I was not alone for long. As the training area filled with a stinging poison gas, a hulking gas-masked “attacker” appeared without warning, ripped me up to my feet, and a struggle ensued. If it hadn’t been for the initiate that had scrambled directly into our conflict and bewildered the monster of a man assaulting me, I may not have slipped away.
My knowledge of the weapons seemed to please the drill sergeant enough to allow me to pass on to the next station: target practice. I was excited by the possibility of something I might enjoy, and had just reached the armoury when it happened. Nearby, an explosion rang out, nearly tearing me from my feet. The concussive force of the blast rattled me to the very core, sending vibrations echoing down my limbs.
This was no drill.
There are things that set a professional aside from an amateur. A professional knows exactly what he or she is doing, and reacts as such. A professional attends to his or her business with unflinching accuracy and skill, flawlessly carrying out the duty that said he or she labored over learning. The gunfight before me was professionalism in its purest form.
Leaving a district was not a task to be taken lightly. It was a very rare situation a person even left their block. No one knew much about the other districts, except members of the Meeting, who weren’t exactly accessable. The towering walls shielded all of our view of the neighboring districts, save the peaks of the titanic buidlings of D4, the very center of Eden. As far as the assorted functions of the Districts, the Institution taught nothing of them. We did not communicate, function with, or encounter eachother. Ever.
I vomited. Everything was a blur. My consciousness was slipping. I was a murderer. My mother was dead. I had killed four, mercilessly. I had fought two professional killers, and won. I had survived 3 gunshots and a blade wound. How did all of this happen? How was I alive? Continue reading
I sat in the kitchen. My own blood had puddled. I attached my newly acquired sleevegun to my wrist. It was a dull, faded black. Designed to dwell in the long sleeves of a man, its camoflauge minimizing the chance of perceiving the deadly creature coiled inside. A viper. Hiding away, waiting to strike, suddenly. To pounce on its victim, a killer in wait. Continue reading
She was bleeding out fast. Her skin was pale, her body cold. I was helplessly watching the life flooding from her eyes, vaporizing away, slipping between my fingers. My mother lay in my arms dying, and I was powerless next to Death. Continue reading