Adagio for Canon: Chapter 15 – Fragment-

(Credit goes to the owner of the image featured on this post. I couldn’t find who originally made it but it’s definitely not mine)

Yes, I’ve been gone for quite some time… I’ve been busy. Very busy. Mostly due to personal reasons but here I am, enjoy this tiny piece. It’s sort of rated R, if you dislike mild written nudity. Okay, maybe PG-13. I mean, seriously, who’d get offended by some descriptions… P.S. It’s not edited.

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I looked at the report but while most rejoiced, it baffled me. The report made no sense: to attack a location of little to no tactical importance when this base was the real threat. Was Amelia bluffing? Had our mole betrayed us? I couldn’t put my mind at ease.  Closing my eyes, I rested my head on the table, taunted by a strange feeling. Something was off.

A soft warm touch slid down my back; brushing my sides and up to my shoulders. I touched these soft hands that caressed my skin, as my shirt slid off my arms. Finger nails gently yet barely scratching the surface of my skin; it was like therapy for my stress.

“Why don’t we have our very own private meeting in my room?” Michelle whispered into my ear. Wrapping her arms around my chest, “it’s been a while since I’ve reported you… personally.”

I couldn’t open my eyes, my head felt so heavy, “I’ll need to freshen up a bit, if you don’t want me to suddenly fall asleep.”

“You worry too much. The report’s from a reliable source. I knew him personally, he’s a good fellow.”

“I know but still… something doesn’t sound right. Mother’s power hungry but that’s never gone to her head. This is clearly a red flag,” I muffled through my teeth as dust dispersed into the air.

“If you’re so worried, why don’t you with the next team? They’re going to monitor the situation from a closer vantage point. If you smell trouble, we’ll evacuate.”

I yawned, “That’s not a bad idea… it’s a pretty damn good idea. The best I’ve heard in a while.”

“What can I say? I kick ass,” Michelle kissed my cheek.

 

*****

 

The baby was still asleep inside his crib.

 

I slowly slid my cover to a side. Michelle was sound asleep as her hair covered her face. I tried sliding off the bed but her arm suddenly wrapped around my waist, throwing herself on top of me. I wrestled with her till I found myself on top of her, holding her back against my chest.

“Where do you think you’re going?” She whispered, careful as to not awaken the baby.

“I need to get ready, Benque Viejo’s six hours from here. If we don’t get going soon, we’ll lose the cover of the night.” I wrapped my arms around her naked body, as I gently kissed the back of her neck, holding her long hair to a side. “I’ve always loved your neck, did you know that?”

“Love, I’ve heard that so many times.”

“It’s your fault for being so damn beautiful.”

“A year ago you didn’t like me.” She turned to me as her breasts pressed to my chest, “that little devil was the best relationship counselor nature could muster.”

“That little rascal’s got spunk like his mother,” I kissed her lips.

I could feel her soft leg rubbing against mine; gently holding mine, her heel on the back of my leg. Her warm embrace and the scent of the sweat running down her chest were intoxicating. She smiled as her lips slid down my neck, kissing my chest.

“Honey, I need to get going,” I slid off the bad and walked to the bathroom. “I’ll be back, don’t you worry. It’s just recon. I’d rather feel safe by seeing it with my own eyes than to walk into a trap.”

“Won’t we defend them?” Michelle asked.

“They refused to join us or our aid,” I slipped into my pants all the while searching for my belt. “We asked on separate occasions but they refused even to accept our letters. They’ve got some balls standing up to a whole nation, being only two towns and five measly villages.”

“Should I go with you? I could send the baby to the Corozal base.” Michelle seemed worried, probably scared that I’d do something brash if anything happened.

“If push comes to shove, we’ll retreat. No use staying if we’ve got no backup. Queen Sophia won’t provide support either.”

Queen Sophia. I could never stand that title, and soon enough, her name started to annoy me. It wasn’t hate; God knows I’d never hate her, but it was a distinct desire to forget her. After a while, seeing that neither of us would disappear for each other’s life; much to the dismay of Michelle and Janet, I had to focus on my family. Michelle was my family. Mother and father were never there for us; I had to become that person they should have been and Sophia had no place in my future. It was difficult at first, but after several months, I became numb: numb to her smile, her voice, her eyes, and her spirit but I was sure that to her… I was that unreachable star she’d never be able to hold.

It hurts if you pay too much attention to it.

 

*****

 

Anastasia stared at the rotating blades of the ceiling fan, passing by every second as the soft breeze brushed her skin. The bed was uncomfortable, the same could be said about the pillow. Stiff and cold; it smelled clean but cheap hotels were far from sanitary. She sat up and looked at the watch, it was still two in the morning. The sun wouldn’t be out for at least four more hours; not that she really wanted to see the sunlight. Today was the day. Today she’d get rid of that stain in her past, yet, why did it hurt so much?

Anastasia crawled to the drawer by the foot of her bed, taking out a small golden cross. Kneeling on the floor, she cried. Begging God to forgive her for ever falling victim to her jealousy. Praying for a miracle: that Alexander might escape the ensuing hell that would soon befall them.

She suddenly stood, bare feet on the floor, as her tears fell down her cheeks. Holding the cross in one hand, she tossed it against the wall. Closing her eyes, she continued crying. Anastasia wanted to warn him by any means necessary but she knew that it was already too late. A miracle comes to those who desperately need it but she was not more worthy than Alexander was. She was as guilty as he was of treason. Anastasia was an even bigger hypocrite and that was what hurt her the most.

 

Far From Tomorrow – Chapter 1 – Part 2

Here’s part 2! As always, remember… it’s unedited.

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The taxi stopped at the palace complex, she was still a long walk from home. The lights from each of the lamp shone ominously over her head. Swinging to and fro as the winds blew stronger and faster; tucking her dress between her legs, she continued to walk slowly on the sidewalk. Her shoes’ heels clicked on the hard rock, as her steps quickened. It wasn’t long till she heard something peculiar: footsteps synchronized with her own. Swallowing hard, she took a left turn around the conference room, looking behind for anybody suspicious. Nobody appeared.

“Was it all in my head?” She whispered.

Suddenly, something cold grabbed her hand. She let out a scream as a familiar voice tried to calm her down.

“Adelaide! Calm down, it’s me: Anthony!”

She sighed, placing her hand on her chest, “Jesus Christ, Anthony. You scared the living hell out of me.”

Placing his arms around her, he kissed her cheek, “what are you doing so late in the street? Why are you so jumpy?”

“I felt like someone was following me. I guess it was just you… thank God for that,” she said, holding on to his arm. “Could you walk me home, please?”

“I’d be ashamed of myself if I didn’t.” They both made their way down St. Charles’ Cathedral.

Tall angels made of stone with golden spears and silvery eyes watched over them as they walked right below them; their shadows overwhelming their bodies. Anthony would look back, from time to time, much to Adelaide’s fear.

“Anthony, is something the matter?” She whispered into his ear. “You’ve been uneasy for the last ten minutes and awfully silent. This is unlike you.”

“I don’t mean to startle you but it looks like we have company. Someone has been tailing us and a minute ago, I saw someone hiding behind the angel’s feet.”

“What do we do?” She held on to Anthony, tightly. “Maybe we should go inside the cathedral? They wouldn’t dare do something inside a holy place.”

“It’s worth a try. Come on.” They both ran to the side of the stairs, running to the inside of the cathedral.

The inside was well lit with candle light dissipating the shadows; flickering as they walked down the aisle. Large arcs adorned the ceiling, as chandeliers and hung over their heads. Mahogany pews and golden candle holders at the altar; dotting its marble walls and floor – votive candles bellow a statue of the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, illuminating their faces with the constant glow of a candle flame.  Anthony held on to Adelaide’s hand, walking her to the first pew, just below the altar, watching for any movement.

A door opened, as a priest walked in. They both let out a deep sigh, as Adelaide smiled at Anthony’s worried face. There were three people kneeling, deep in prayer and a priest lighting a few candles whose flame had flickered beyond existence.

The priest walked down the altar, gently swinging open a small metal door, and stood next to where they sat.

“My children, must I ask why are you not praying? Is something the matter?” His eyes were deep blue, like the ocean, but lifeless and still. Unfazed by human emotion, that’s what Adelaide saw as he sucked the living daylights out of her. “Is something wrong, Your Royal Highness?”

“Who are you?” She slowly slid closer to Anthony, “I come to this church every Thursday and Sunday. Not once have I seen you here. There is only one priest and he’s a family friend…”

Searching through his garments, he took out a gun with a silence attached to it. He smiled as he signalled someone on the distance. Immediately, everyone stood and took out their guns, “pretty damn smart for a Crownie.”

“What do you want from us?” Anthony replied, shielding Adelaide from view, “you have no shame… even going as far as doing something this low before the eyes of God!”

“God? Son, where I come from there is no God. There is only me, you, them and us… No God to step on our dreams and today: no God to save you, boy.”

No sooner had he said this than a bullet grazed the right side of his neck, as he fired back. Anthony and Adelaide fell to the floor, hiding beneath the pew. Several gunshots were heard, as the fire fight seemed to move away from them. No sooner had it all started than it suddenly finished. Silence ensued.

Footsteps echoed on the distance. Clenching her fists, Adelaide dared not peak but if this was going to be her end, she would face it with honour. Looking out into the aisle, a tall man stood before them. A silvery well-trimmed bear, black eyes as dark as the deepest trench and as cold as the loneliest night; a black coat covered everything with the exception of his shoes.

“I don’t know what you want but I won’t give in to terrorist threats. Do you worst!” Adelaide said.

Anthony looked back at the man, both now sitting on the pew.

The man smiled, “God is definitely with you two. Had I been a minute later, you’d both be dead.”

“Who are you?” Anthony replied.

“General Ignatius Solt at your services, Your Royal Highness,” as he bowed before her, she saw the royal guards step in, armed and ready. “Let me take you to your father, he’s worried about you.”

“Thank you,” she whispered.

***

Adelaide tapped her fingers on the table; her father had been gone for half an hour now. He had told her to wait but was not informed why. She had narrowly escaped an assassination attempt and the ring leader had vanished. It was reckless of her to walk home with no escort and even endangering the life of another royal.

“Crownies, huh?” She whispered. Looking at her half-empty bottle of water, she realized that God was on her side.

The door opened behind her as a young man stepped in, followed by her father and the general. They were all discussing something but the young man just stood nearby, firm and unfazed, he was probably a soldier or a bodyguard.

They both grew silent and sat opposite to her, with the solider standing near the door.

“Adelaide, you already know General Solt,” he pointed at the same man that had saved her a few hours ago. “He is a war hero, the man who singlehandedly crushed the southern rebellion and now: your saviour,” taking a sip from a glass of wine he continued “I have a great deal of enemies both outside and inside our family. You are the youngest and with that a lack of experience. Your mother and I have tried shielding you from the reality of the outside world, to save you from the hardships that your siblings have endured.”

“They are all experts at what they do best,” she replied.

“Experience does not shield them from the unforeseeable; your mother had taught me that.” Motioning for the young soldier to come closer, he looked at the general, expecting him to take over the conversation.

“Your Royal Highness, your father believes that you need to be taken care off by having a watchful eye following you wherever you go,” he cleared his throat, “This is Second Lieutenant William Solt, my son, and your bodyguard.”

“Bodyguard? I don’t need a bodyguard. I am not some porcelain ornament to protect, I can manage on my -,”

“-and yet here you are, shaken and sacred. I almost brought you back in a body bag!” Her father interrupted. “I am not asking for you permission, Adelaide, I’m telling you that from now on, you won’t even go the kitchen without Mr. Solt.”

“Father-“

“-Your Royal Highness to you. I am still higher than you’ll ever be, don’t disgrace me before a hero,” he got up and walked over to the general. Tapping his shoulder, they both walked out of the room, leaving only Adelaide and William.

Fifteen minutes had passed as silence ensued.

Adelaide tapped her fingers on the table, looking back, from time to time, only to meet William’s watchful stare. Turning around quickly, he continued on for the next ten minutes.

“I’m not sure what someone like you is supposed to do rather than harassing me with that filthy stare,” she said.

William didn’t answer.

“At the very least, they could have afforded someone with more experience and higher ranking than you.”

Again, he didn’t respond.

Annoyed, she got up and hastily made her way through the opposite door, with William right behind her. She sped up her pace but William still managed to keep up with her. Around corridors and halls covered in fine paintings and beautiful flowers, she soon got tired.

Upon reaching the door to her room, she grabbed the handle and stood still. William was right behind her. “I won’t allow you to enter my room; I am not fond of strange men watching me sleep.” She didn’t even turn around.

“I am your bodyguard not your stalker. I will stand guard outside your door till morning breaks,” he replied. His voice was soft, softer than what she had imagined.

“And what if someone breaks into my room?”

“Your room is safe, I have seen the design, and there is no way anybody is getting in without going through the royal guards bellow.”

She scoffed, “smartass.” Adelaide slowly opened the door, looking back at her bodyguard as the light slowly dissipated into the darkness of the room. His blue eyes were the same as those of the priest: cold.

The Smog

Okay, here you go. A new short piece. As always, it’s unedited… you’ve been warned.

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There was a light in the distance, amidst the dense fog. Her footsteps echoed as she made her way across the street. Whispers, voices called her name; beckoning to get closer – she hurriedly made her way to the bus stop.  The air was still. Her skirt swayed to her movements of her long slender legs. High heels tapping on the surface of a pavemented street; checking her watch, it was still too early for the sun to come out.

The voices kept on calling her name. Vivian, Vivian, Vivian, they whispered as each time they grew louder and more violent. Faces formed in the mist, speaking words she could not understand. They coughed embers with each passing. Holding on to her coat, she sped up towards the light. As it came closer, the bus stop was beneath it. A small lamp post illuminated the tiny bus stop. Three brown moths encircled the light, tapping with their large wings, the plastic covering. Small faces on the moths’ abdomen grinned with a sadistic smile as their eyes glowed in a sinister crimson light.

A tap on the thin metallic sheet that covered her head, a tap on the ground; the scent of rain overwhelmed her. As rain showered the hidden street, she could see the flashes of lightning surrounding her, outlasting the now flickering light of the lamp post. More moths had gathered around the light, as the mist engulfed her.

Her phone rang; she took out it out of her small pink bag. It was the alarm, five thirty in the morning: she was going to be late. Out in the distance, two head lights dimly came into view. She walked to the door, still closed, foggy and nearly indistinguishable from the rest of the vehicle. Knocking on the cold glass, as tiny crystalline drops slid down the window, it opened. The driver greeted her as he took off his bright red hat. Long, unkempt beard, covered in grey hairs and white; sweaty face, sprinkled with sweat draining down his nose. Taking out her bus card, the machine beeped, as she walked down the empty isle to the back.

Wiping the fog from the window, she could barely see outside. The bus stop disappeared a few feet from the bus. As she gazed outside, staring at the dim lights that zipped past them, a face appeared before her. Sliding to the seat next to her, the image dissipated with the cold breeze, as five months held on to the window. Their faces glowing, nibbling at the window; she looked at the bus driver as he stared at her through the rear view mirror, “you must be new here,” he said.

The Moth

It’s been a while since I wrote something… it’s short with no plans on expanding it – maybe not anytime soon, anyways. As always: it’s unedited, so read at your own peril.

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A loud scream ripped through the vail of silence; the curtains of darkness were ripped apart as she awakened. Her eyes hazily scanned the room. It was more akin to the squeal of a pig, or a large boar. Sweat slowly ran down her spine, a quick shiver of her body and an outbreak of goosebumps that covered her arms down to her wrists. What had she been dreaming about? Her mind was lost in a sea of confusion; all she could remember was a thick tar-like fluid covering her body- adrift in a sea of nightmares.

A cool light air settled in the room. She looked at her window yet it was still closed, covered by crimson curtains, as light from the street pierced through. Slowly sliding to a side of her bed, she slid both feet inside her sandals and walked over to the window. The closer she got, the cooler the air became. Opening the window, she was dumbfounded by the sight: a thick fog covered everything. The glow from the light post was completely hidden away, reduced to the image of a radiated pile of clouds slightly illuminating the room.

As she was about to turn around, a large brown moth crashed into the window. Startled, she let out a scream. The moth vanished. She leaned closer to the window, as she noticed the creature fluttering by till it settled on the glass. Inspecting the insect, she saw what appeared to be a face on its torso… a human face.  Stupefied, she collapsed on the floor. Gazing at the face, it smiled, revealing a full set of teeth.

She couldn’t scream; her legs became numb as her body slouched over to a side. The floor was cold. It all faded to black.

Awakened by an itch on her left hand, she clumsily got up. The window was covered by these moths, as their faces all moved… almost as if they were laughing, nibbling at the window. Their wings flapped, constantly hitting the window. The noise echoed inside her head, scratching and hitting. She fell on the floor, covering her ears with both hands, as tightly as she could. She tried screaming but to no avail, her screams drowned amidst the sound of the scratches.

Crawling to her bathroom, the itch continued. Scratching her hand, she noticed a small bump. Anxiety overwhelmed her. Her finger nails scratched the surface, still the pink irritation turned into red – her nails had pierced her skin. She couldn’t stop as the itch only worsened, spreading to her left arm and her right cheek. Scratching and scratching, it didn’t hurt, not even after the skin pealed before her eyes, not even after the flesh was ripped apart from her vessels and nerves. Her nails hit the bone, and even then, as fleshy chunks fell on the kitchen sink and blood turned the water scarlet red – she kept on scratching and ripping. Tears fell down cheeks and into the bone; horrified at the sight of her body.

The window shattered and the bathroom became flooded with moths as they attached to her flesh; nibbling, biting, hitting and ripping with their tiny legs; all dark brown with white antennas. A white moth, considerably bigger than the rest, landed on her eye – its face grinned and her world became dark.

She awakened, covered in a cold sweat. Her mother opened the door and walked into her room, “Now, now… lay down, your fever has yet to go down. You’ll be alright, honey.” A small towel soaked in cool water; she placed it on her daughter’s forehead. “It’ll all be over soon, baby.”

Haven – 01

So, it’s been a while since I posted anything on this blog. I might be a little rusty, feel free to comment and/or reprimand me. Okay, as always, it’s unedited and I’m not sure how long I’ll stretch this story… so, enjoy while it runs.

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DAY 1

Sunlight shone on my face, disturbing my sleep. I slowly opened my eyes as the window darkened. The constant hum of the vehicle was as seductive as the comfy bed I had left behind. Grabbing a hold of the seat, I pushed myself in an upright position. The radio was low, humming a few tunes I could barely recognize. Janet looked back and smiled, holding a small plastic cup in her hands.

“Take this, it’s pretty strong,” she leaned to a side and took out another cup.

As the warmth of the small black cup seeped into my skin, I took a small sip. “How long was I out?”

“For about an hour or so, I wasn’t expecting for traffic to be this troublesome.”

The coffee lacked sugar but it was good. We had stalled at the very entrance, right after the Belize Bridge; traffic was terrible. Monday mornings were the worst time for anybody to be stuck in traffic. The street drowned in grey smog with echoes of car horns and paperboys going from window to window, in an attempt to make a sale.

I looked at my cellphone; it was ten in the morning.  “Aren’t we running a little late?”

“You start at twelve, Richard and I need to be there by eleven,” Janet didn’t seem the least bit worried. “But, we’ve got a pretty good excuse and Richard is in-charge of the project.”

“So, you’ve got more liberties than what you should really have.” I lay back on the seat. It was soft, smooth, with slight warmth still lingering on its surface. “By the way, is it the same smart polymer you’ve been working on?”

Janet glanced at Richard. Richard smiled, “don’t worry honey; the information had already been leaked. At this very moment, there is nothing more we can do, besides, he’s going to be a part of the research staff.”

I stretched my arms and sat upright, “I swear I didn’t leak any information.”

“We know you didn’t,” Janet smiled back at me. “We are being cautious about who we trust. Oh, I almost forgot to ask you, how’s Carol?”

“Carol’s fine. I didn’t want to leave her but I needed the money to finish my studies.” Gazing at the walls on the horizon, the highway was surprisingly empty. “I can’t have her worrying about me.”

“So, what are you studying?” Richard looked over from the real-view mirror.

“I’m trying to get a degree in Pharmacogenomics.”

“That’s great; I have a degree in genetics and evolutionary genetics, among other degrees I’ve picked up along the way.” Richard had this strong assertive voice, as if he was in command and would always be in command. It bugged me a little.

Taking a left turn, we parted ways with the highway and entered an enclosed region. The narrow road was wide enough for trucks to go through, with both sides surrounded by tall light-grey walls with the company logo. Ahead in the distance, a large gate came into view. Q3corp, the three was inverted, all in red, with three hexagonal structures in the background.  The doors were a few inches thick, possibly concrete and steel; it’s a pretty well secured research lab.

The slow creaking of the bolts rotating and locking in place, the sound of the air being pushed out of the structure and the wall being shut tight behind us; it was scary, I had a really bad feeling about this.

“This place is really uptight about their security, aren’t they? What exactly do you guys do?” I looked back at the guards standing in front of the gate – they were not unlike soldiers or a riot squad.

“Here we research anything of importance to the human race – from polymers to tissue, from medications to biodegradable glass, we have it all,” Janet took out her identification card from the small black purse, “we are not bound by limits since we have so much to offer the outside world.”

“Let me put it this way, Mike: we do the stuff that makes the world go round – we are pioneers on the brink of new discoveries.” Taking a sip from this coffee, Richard continued, “those phagocytes that we announced, that’s a medical discovery. To use a virus that eats bacteria to eliminate infections? That’s a masterpiece in itself. That is who we are.”

“But we aren’t expecting the other companies to come rushing in with battle tanks and mortars, are we? These security measures seem a little excessive don’t you—“I was promptly interrupted by Janet.

“We’re here! Grab your identification card and come with me… we need to disinfect you, thoroughly.”

Disinfection? What was she talking about? We were still in what appeared to be the outer courtyard. I opened the door and as I stepped outside of the vehicle, the ground crackled beneath my shoe. The gravel, like a harsh coarse pillow, scrapped and rocked with each step. The sun was high on the blue sky, an ocean above our heads with not a cloud in sight – a gentle breeze flooded the ground as Richard parted ways and into the first building. The structured were all plane white, with big black numbers and letters to identify them. The T-8 building stood before us, as the car reversed and drove past us. Janet led me to a small parking lot where small vehicles, similar to golf-carts, were parked.

“Where are we headed? I see these buildings are all marked but why is the T-8 building the first one beyond the gate?” I leaned forward, as Janet slowly drove the cart. “Is there an order to these labs or are they even labs?”

“The first letter defines what exactly goes on inside: T for Testing, R for Research, E for Experiments and P for production. You’re headed over to the P-3 building.” Janet made a few turns and moved into through two other gates. “The whole facility is divided by four different walls, with the first wall being the outside wall and the other three dividing the inside… like a mitochondria.”

“Or a eukaryotic cell…” Correcting her made me feel as if I wasn’t so useless after all. She was a research scientist; I was here just to help with production.

We stopped on the first gate: G-2. We parked next to a few other carts, similar in shape but differently colored. Taking a step inside, the door locked behind us, a red light shone on us as the room became flooded with a gas. “This is for disinfection, it might not be much since we’re stepping outside again but we want to ensure that the only pathogens that you have are ours.”

“That sounds pretty ominous.” I whispered.

“Did you say something?” She replied, swiping her card. The door opened.

“No, nothing, just admiring how strict the security is around here.”

“A few things can come in but nothing comes out without our approval,” her eyes twinkled as she said that.

 ******

                The P-3 building was a five story building, white and non-characteristic on the outside, but on the inside it was brimming with activity. Everyone covered from head to toe: masks, goggles, gloves, and what appeared to be light blue surgical bonnets that covered everything except their face. As I stepped inside a room lit with ultraviolet light, a soft muffled voice asked me to step over to a small metallic plate.

“Please look up at the sensor, it’s that small red light directly in front of you,” his voice was so soft; I could swear he was whispering.

A laser beam scanned my body. “I’m not going to turn into the hulk or am I?” I snickered; he didn’t.

“Brace yourself, gas treatment in 3, 2, 1-“his voice was interrupted by the outburst of gas jets battering my body. “Disinfection complete, step outside.”

A door opened to my left.

“Please follow me; we’ll get you everything you need.” A young lady, much younger than me, guided my through the maze. She was just as tall as I was, feeling a bit intimidated myself, and her eyes were perfect blue, like the deepest part of the ocean; strong and piercing, she grabbed a coat and a few other items. “Put these on, you’ll be briefed in a while. Please ensure that everything fits and is secure.”

Everything fit, everything was secure but what’s with the extreme measures? What exactly are we dealing with? The lady came back, portfolio in hand; she grabbed a test tube and hung it next to the light.

“Phagocytes, Mr. Guerra, these are tiny bacteria-eaters that will revolutionize the world. In this lab we denature them and keep them in a “dormant” state, if you want to call it that,” she fixed her glasses, pushing them closer to her eyes, “these are active… once spill could put your life in grave danger.”

“Intestinal flora, right?” I examined the test tube.

“That’s just the start…”

*****

                The day had been pretty rough, transferring phages from vacuum sealed tubes and “inactivating” them. It wasn’t as stressful as I thought it would be but the risk and danger of it all kept me on my toes. After the final checkup, I walked out of the G-2 and into the night. It was around eight thirty pm. The shadows of the buildings cast upon the small paved sidewalks, dispelled by tiny led lights, hung solemnly over the ground. It wasn’t uncommon to see a guard patrolling but it seemed that security grew tighter in the late hours of the day.

I became lost amidst the maze. Everywhere I went, not a sign of the G-1. To my dismay, there were no guards here. Everything was so empty, abandoned… it was creepy and a perfect setting for one of those serial killer movies. The gravel cracked beneath my shoe, I had abandoned the sidewalk, crossing over to the wall. Maybe if I follow the wall, it’ll lead me to the gate? It was worth a shot. Small shrubbery neatly planted in a row, one after the other, cut in tiny cubes; they were my only companions. Finally, after half an hour of walking, a gate game into view – G-5. G-5? I don’t remember hearing about a G-5. The front gate was G-1, with the inside being divided into three sectors, G-2 through 4, where does that leave 5? I took out my phone; it was nearly out of battery. Searching through the virtual map, it was directly connected to the network yet there were no signs of a G-5. That was pretty strange. Had I been following the wrong map?

Upon reaching the gate, the door was lit. I pressed the button and the door slid open. The inside was active but nobody was there at the control panel. A red light engulfed the room, that wasn’t normal. Was it malfunctioning? As I was about to step inside, a guard spotted me and walked towards me; he didn’t look to happy.

“Sir, did you know that’s a restricted zone?” He was well on his fifties, a shaggy beard and bags under his eyes. “You’re not authorized to enter this place.”

“I’m so sorry. I didn’t know there was a G-5, I was looking for G-1. I’m lost,” as I quickly took a step back, the door slid shut. “It’s my first day of work.”

He inspected my ID and my phone. After confirming what I had said, he escorted me to G-1. Along the way he told me stories about how that place had been abandoned after an accident.

“There was a spill or something, people died!” His voice grew darker. “They say that every night, you can hear the cries of the people who died in there… their souls never parted from that place.”

“You can’t believe that… I’m not much of a believer myself but I don’t believe in ghosts.” I looked away, staring at the bioluminescent plants.

“No son, I have a few friends who patron on the other side of the gate. They say that sometimes the screaming becomes so unbearable and just as quickly as it started, it ends,” he whispered. “They lose three guards by the end of the month… three out of the five that usually patrol.”

“Three out of five? That means that two of them are veterans.”

“Old man Patrick and a youngster by the name of Jeffry. They’ve outlasted everyone.”

Leaving the place seemed like the best idea. Ghosts? Not really… Or was it? That night, I could barely sleep, their voices echoing in my head. Were there really ghosts on the other side of G-5?

The Village Standing on God’s Feet – 01

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Here is part two! Yes, they are very small but I’m taking it step by step… Again, a warning to those Grammar Nazis… it’s unedited.

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Tossing the plant over to a side, he sat on the floor. The sun was still at the peak of the sky, burning anyone who would dare challenge him. When would God call down a mighty storm? His people were crying and pleading. When would he call unto God, selfishly, for help? Was it time to give up? The lack of plates and food in his home, dusty, soot covered furniture and torn pages from an old diary – they all adorned a silent little home. Walking up to a small clay container, he poured some its contents on a tiny, stained cup. His hands shook with fatigue.

“Camille! Camille!” Lena’s voice filtered through the thinly woven cloth that divided each room from the other. “Mother is searching for you.”

He walked over to the door, scraping the floor with its uneven corner, he forced it open. “Lena, I thought you were at the early meet n’ greet.”

“Yes, we were, and you weren’t there. What’s wrong? My family is in debt to your parent’s… they promised to keep you safe.”

“My father was doing his job, you know that.”

“Camille… don’t do this. Let’s go.”

He turned away, but his attempts at hiding were thwarted by a soft tug on his dusty shirt. “Camille, please?”

Escaping her soft grip, he shooed her; slowly closing the door. Much to his dismay, she forced herself, halfway through. Staring blankly at her eyes, he turned around. “Do as you may.”

“Camille! Why must you be so stubborn?”

“Lena, why are YOU stubborn?” Tossing his cup at a small statue, holding the door to the living room open, he turned to her. She wouldn’t back down. “I don’t need anybody’s debt paid. My parents are gone. The debt has been settled. Go home.”

Silence ensued. A strong breeze shook the very foundation of the ill-maintained building. “Tomorrow, I’ll climb the mountain of God.” Camille’s eyes were burning with determination; a fire that engulfed Lena’s smile. “If God will not come to us, then I shall go to Him.”

That night, he sat by the well at the edge of the village. Holding his father’s diary in his hands, he read what he had gone through that faithful day: the day he died.

“Two hours till the break of dawn, my hands are numb, my lips are dry. The feeling running down my spine is ominous and depressive as the black, tar-like fluid that runs deep in my veins. The feeling of fire burning through my entrails is second only to the fear of leaving those whom I love the most, behind. Never forget that God watches over every one of us, lest we fall into despair, never forget to look up and thank him every time you find yourself staring up at His Mountain.”

Closing the book, he looked up at the bright lights that never seemed to fade away. God must surely know why his people are suffering so. God must know why he lost everything. God must know, he was sure of it.

The Village Standing on God’s Feet – 00

Sun

This is a new project! 😀 Finally, in a very long time! As alwasy, I don’t edit this stuff so Grammar Nazis beware.

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A single ray of light seeping through the ill-arranged pieces of wood that barely held together a roof; the wind was blowing with a peculiar ferocity, as it had done for many days now. Birds chirping away at the sight of a barren landscape sparsely dotted with trees – now overwhelmed with weeds faithfully growing on the cracked, dusty ground. He got up from the hammock that slowly swung to and fro, as a loud creak shook the very foundation of the room.  It was pretty early in the morning, rain had yet to fall. Large nets, hung overnight for any surprise midnight showers, were slowly unwound and dragged inside rickety old homes. The village survived another day, but for how long? They probably won’t be able to see another day – it was looking bleak for the village standing at the feet of god.

With mechanical precision, he fixed the torn rope and dropped the small wooden containers inside the well. A loud thumb signaled a hardened, empty bottom. Water had become an expensive resource. The only thing that had kept him alive for so long was extracting liquid from the large, prickly vegetation that grew in abundance in the surrounding areas. Grabbing a hold of a large net and a small machete, he placed his old sandals on his feet and slowly walked towards the east, were the sun had come out. Life had been easier in the past, life had been simple: survival was within everyone’s grasp. Three years after his mother’s death, everything went downhill.

Wiping the sweat off his forehead, he looked up at the clear sky: not a single cloud in sight. Beyond that ominous blue color was the mountain of God. The shadow of the mountain protected them from many disasters, unlike most of their neighbors. God had favored them, so, it was only reasonable that He’d never let them die. Looking past its rocky base stood a dome of light – the realm of the Creator, or so the old people used to say. His hand covered in blisters, a slender needle protruding from his thumb and scars of olden injuries. Hard and coarse, his hands lay testament to a difficult past. Wiping, once again, the buildup of sweat on his face, he swung his machete at the base of the plant, flinging needles in every direction, seeing it fall on its side. A viscous, clear fluid oozed from its base – that was his elixir of life.