This took me a while to upload… it’s not much, but I’ve been getting off my butt and right into writing. As always, this is unedited, so be aware of the mistakes. Mistakes galore!
It’s been three days since the Research City closed its gates after the lockdown. Nobody really asked why, since inside the city was safer than wandering around the outside world. Eventhough it was well distanced from the city, its influence could be felt within the monochromatic walls of every structure: the fear, the incapability to change one’s luck, the insecurity and the desire to reshape the situation. High crime rate and violence, it was no wonder everyone strived to work with the Q3 Corporation. The Black Stars usually patrolled within the buildings, suspiciously at the same hour every day for the past three days. Something was happening or was about to happen, probably something had gone missing and they were willing to do whatever it took to corner the thief.
I looked around for a bit, before starting my shift. Janet stood by the door of the R-6 building; she looked worried. We had been friends, back in our university days; when she was nervous, she’d constantly play with her hair – she was doing that right now. As I walked towards her, I noticed an older fellow walking straight to her. They engaged in conversation as I watched from afar. The expression on her face was that of fear… but why? The old man, grey hair, a long lab coat covered his wide chest, standing well above her head, his short grey beard ran up to his side burns, and a grey metallic briefcase on his right hand. He gave her a keycard and entered the building. I promptly made my way to where she was. She was on the verge of tears.
“What’s wrong? What happened”? I tried talking to her but she made no sense.
“I fucked up… I fucked up real bad,” she repeated over and over again. Lifting her hands to cover her face, she smiled. “I sold my soul to the devil, Michael. Now, it has come looking for that which I promised.”
“I don’t understand.”
“I signed up for a shitty experiment… an experiment I knew there was a .1% chance of survival,” she slid the keycard into her pocket. “I didn’t expect that they’d go ahead with it.”
“What did you get yourself into?”
“There are secrets confined within this place… dark secrets. The devil’s lurking within these walls.”
“What? You knew didn’t you? You knew exactly what you were getting into… you knew what my sister got into! You knew all along!” I stared into her eyes. She tried averting my gaze. “Damn it! What happened to her? You know I’ve been worried sick about her…”
“Mike… right now’s not a good time,” she moved her eyes. A camera, we were being monitored.
She motioned for me to go. As I turned around, she gave me a crumpled piece of paper. Never once did I look back, never once did I even think of saying good bye. Something inside of me whispered that this would be the last time I’d see her alive.
On my way back, I bumped into Ms. Rosa. She stopped and dragged me over to the G-3. She grabbed a piece of paper and wrote something on it, I was unable to make out what it was. Folding it neatly, she placed it inside my pocket and walked away. Jesus Christ, it’ll be a long day.
Lying on my bed, I look up at the ceiling. It was white, absolutely white, with not a scratch or imperfection to be found. It was a lonely place, sometimes I’d wish my girlfriend was here to cheer me up. This job was making me lose my mind. Whenever she called, I had to hide everything that was considered sensitive information from her. The walls had ears and so did the computers.
I got off my bed and walked into the bathroom. Locking the door, I looked at the piece of paper that Janet had left behind. It had a few things written on it: RSTP00986, and below a: Genysis78. Was this a username and a password? If so, where would I input these things? Maybe there was a log in for people in Janet’s position. Now looking at Ms. Rosa’s paper, it was more of a direct command: meet me at 11 by the G-5 gate. Easier said than done… I had to evade the guards and probably the Black Stars. What was even more puzzling was the fact that she didn’t even ask for directions to the place. She didn’t even believe me when I told her that such a place existed.
Two hours and a few beers later, I awakened to the sound of static: somehow my pc’s monitor had been turned on. Static? I don’t remember that happening on an LCD screen. The computer started, loading all programs till a couple of windows appeared. It had a logo and two spaces for a login and a password. The keyboard started typing by itself, adding the same login name and password written on the crumpled piece of paper Janet had given me. As it logged in, multiples windows appeared on the monitor: fragments of reports, statistics, lists… Emilia Alejandra Guerra… my sister! I crawled closer to the edge of my bed, closer to the screen. Suddenly, the shadows that adorned my room began to fill every nook and cranny, sliding and covering everything – including the light from the windows and LCD. With the fading glimmer of light, a scream echoed through my room – I woke up covered in sweat, as the empty cans of bears fell of my bed. Was it all a dream? Managing to pull my weight, I made my way into the bathroom.
I found myself walking towards our meeting place. The bioluminescent shrubbery glowed as the night sky was illuminated by the tiny glimmer of starlight. The moon was a bright crimson crescent, hovering next to a bright start glowing in gold. The was no wind, the walls blocked most of the air currents but a slight breeze could be felt from time to time; it was a relief that the inside of every building had air conditioning and small fans to mimic a slight breeze at certain locations.
Each building was five stories tall, with no exceptions, and absolutely no windows. Only the cafeteria was allowed to have windows. Inside every building there was a world of its own: its adjusted temperature, humidity, elimination of allergens and static; even the inside pressure had been tweaked.
Still pretty clumsy, my drunken state became apparent as the dizziness grew even more obstructive to tonight’s plans – whatever they may be. On the distance, I could see Ms. Rosa, leaning against the wall. Her hair was tied in a bun, unlikely of her – maybe there would be something that would have us running around like criminals. I shuddered at the sound of that; I wouldn’t let anything or anybody risk my research. I was going to find my sister, no matter the cost.