Categories > Celebrities > My Chemical Romance > Killjoy Academy

12: Trauma

by GotSparkle 6 reviews

“Pink fuzzy tiger print handcuffs it is.”

Category: My Chemical Romance - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Drama,Humor,Romance - Characters: Bob Bryar,Frank Iero,Gerard Way,Mikey Way,Ray Toro - Warnings: [V] - Published: 2011-11-10 - Updated: 2011-11-10 - 9299 words

(Neon’s POV)

As that memory fades, I’m released, and thrown to the floor. Blood is dripping down the walls, some dark red-purple stains splattering and spotting the floor from the previous beatings. A drac’s foot pulls back, and I curl up to protect Ella.

“Don’t lay a hand on her.” Korse’s voice says. “Or a foot.” He adds quickly, as I dodge a boot that comes swinging. “She needs to be intact!” Oh no. I’d rather be beaten and bruised, then intact for them to make me their lab rat.

“She can walk. Bring her out.” He says, and the SCARECROWS lead me out. “How was that, pet? Did you enjoy going last? It will teach you to not be selfish, to try to save yourself.”

“Screw you sir.” I say to him, the sir added sarcastically. He slaps me, and I snarl. Quickly, I’m restrained, before I can tear his face off. I step back, and slip in something wet and sticky. “W-what?” I ask, looking down and dropping to my hands and knees. I lift two fingers, covered in a sticky, ruddy colored substance. Blood, I determine, based on the smell when I lift the fingers to my nose. My hands fall down, and then I crumple on the floor, despite the pools of blood. The liquid soaks my hair, turning it a lovely red color, which will dry to pink. “Wh-where did you take my friend?” I ask, noticing a lack of one color in our little rainbow of hair.

We were missing Red. Red was gone from the rainbow. Why wasn’t Party here?

(Fun Ghoul’s POV)

They took him away. She couldn’t see it, she was being tortured. But… under the cloth of his shirt… there was a faint glimmer of a heartbeat from Party’s chest. His last words to me. Take care of her. That’s all. Who was she? Sun? She could take care of herself. Their baby? Maybe. If it was a she. I doubted that. I doubted Sun would still have her precious child with her by the time we got out of here. If we got out of here that is. I’d take care of that baby, if I had to. To see Sun smile.

“Let’s go you guys.” Korse says, smiling at us. “Look alive, let’s get you processed!” He smiles, a fake, electronic smile that I hated. We’re all put into handcuffs, and taken through the doors. I could barely walk. That’s how drained I was. With the drug clouding our system, we could feel each other’s pain. Violet nudges me along when I stop a bit, trying to catch my breath.

As we walk through the glass window lined corridors, and are led into an elevator much too small for the amount of people we crammed into it, I try to start thinking like Poison would, to protect our family. To get us out alive, and back to the Academy.

“Frank,” Sun whispers, and I notice I’m pressing her into a corner. “Frankie I’m so sorry.”

“It’s not your fault girl. Just stay strong. What should we expect?” I ask.

She sighs heavily. “Look, it’s gonna be us, paired or tripled into rooms. Not together. We will receive new clothes, and our schedules for tomorrow. And they’ll take blood. I’m gonna have to get rid of her…” she murmurs, putting my hand right about where her baby was.

“No.” I say. “We’ll get out of here. Before they can take her from you. You’re strong, and she’s got you and Party’s DNA. She’ll make it through a nuclear fallout attack I bet…” Sun laughs a tiny bit. “C’mon, stay strong little one.” I poke her belly a bit, and I could swear Sun smiled. “Stay strong, for your mommy.”

“This way infidels.” Korse says with an exaggerated sigh, pulling us towards a hallway. Doors, made of metal, were on either side, lining up and down at hotel room intervals. Before we can realize what’s happening, we’re thrown into rooms. I grasp for a hand, and grab Violet’s.

“Vi!” I scream. He SCARECROW’s rip us apart, and I haul back and hit him in the face, grasping for another hand, and coming up with Mikey’s. “Kid!” I scream, and the SCARECROW knocks me into the room. The door is slammed, locked from the outside. I hear a feminine shriek from the other side. My fist slams against the door as I slide to my knees. “No!” I scream, slamming my fist against the door a few times.

“I suggest you move, 049.” A voice says, causing me to look around the room. “Your prisoner number is 049.” It explains for me. The world dims a bit, and I look around the room. Three beds, a desk, a chair, and a door that I assume leads to a bathroom –probably good, as I had to pee like a racehorse-. One small window, barred from the outside. I see a tray sitting on one bed, and an empty bottle on the other. A pill bottle sits on the desk, marked with the BLI logo on a pristine white label. I start crying, and find the strength to crawl to my bed, marked with 049 on a piece of white paper, black marker forming the perfect numbers. The bed is, of course, pristine and perfectly made. Pristine white sheets, pristine white pillows. As I lay back on it, to curl up and cry, I notice how soft it was. What was this? The door opens, a Drac walks in, hands me a tray with food, and walks away, throwing a water bottle at me before he leaves. I catch it, but just barely. I look at the tray, and pick up the white plastic spork carefully. The food in front of me is yellow in color, gooey in texture, a thing of broccoli is on another little compartment, a small roll on the other one and something that I’m about 90% sure are apple slices on another hollowed out part of the tray. I think a door opens somewhere, but I’m too busy carefully holding up a sporkful of the gooey substance, holding it to my nose to check what it is. Smells like cheese, I notice.

“It’s good.” A voice says. I drop my spork. “It’s mac and cheese. Eat it. It’s what we get for the night.” I continue looking down. “Hi. Are you new?” The voice asks. I lift my head, as my head swims to make an answer.

“yeah.” I say, and look up. The figure is shirtless, back turned to face me, so I couldn’t see his face. “Well, not really. I’ve been in here before. Got out last time. Barely made it. Wasn’t treated this good, that time around.”

“Oh, wow, well I suggest you eat it.” The voice says with a small laugh. Wait… I know that laugh.

“Yeah.” I say. Where did I know it from? “They took my friends.”

“Hey,” he says. “it happens to us all. If they took you here, you’ll be taken care of.” He says. He’s pulling a shirt over his head, a pristine white one. “I want color so bad…” he murmurs.

“Well, I still have my clothes.” Just then, the door opens again, and I fly out of my spot when I see who it is.

“No way.” I breathe. This can’t be happening. No way could this be happening. No way could he be here, it just wasn’t plausible.

“Oh my god!” I scream, throwing my arms around the person in front of me. “Oh my god! It’s you! Oh thank god!”

“No!” The other man says, turning around. He finishes pulling his shirt on, and looks at me. “It is. No way.”

I yank the necklace I was wearing out from under my tanktop. He looks at it, and then throws his arms around me. I start crying harder. “Oh my god. It is you!”

Ryan was alive. And he was here. “Cy!” I hug him tighter. I’m crying now, but out of joy for having found my lost friend. “I missed you so much!” I squeeze him to me tighter, happy to hear his heart thumping away in his chest. “And Lights!” I say, hugging his brother, who awkwardly puts his arms around me. He was the shyer of the pair, Ryan being the louder, more… open one. Open, to say the least.

“What is up with your hair?” he asks, holding it. “When did you go platinum?” He asks with a small laugh. Typical Ryan, trying to make everybody cheer up a bit. “I missed you. How’ve you been?”

“Busy.” I say. He laughs a bit, and holds me at arms length, surveying me. “You’re too skinny, go eat that mac n’ cheese!” He says, and I happily limp my way back to my bed, where I begin eating. He walks over and sits on my bed. “What happened after you started running? I saw you run. They’ve had me here ever since we got into that little… accident.” He says, recounting the day we were captured. Well, he was. I just ran like hell.

“They got me about 6 months later. All the stuff they did to me in the labs? It’s gotten more effective. I can control it now.” I whisper, and he widens his big eyes at me. Leslie walks over and sits on the bed. “And we started a dorm.” I refrence the code we use for the Academy, which he knows. “Everybody is passing through, and frankly, I’m on top of that mountain.” Basically, in our code, I just told him I run the Academy, and that we have a huge class, and a huge student body. Granted, it’s a tattooed, skinny jean wearing, combat boot sporting, ray gun toting, pierced body, but a body none the less. Ryan holds up my roll, and I nod. He tears a small piece off, taking the corner. I never liked the corners, oddly enough.

Party, he used to make sandwiches for dinner, and I’d cut my corners off. Always, without fail, I’d find a way to get those corners off my food. I refused to eat it with the corners, and I had no idea why. Just a quirk of mine. He had his. Like that little piece of hair that wouldn’t ever straighten-

The thought of Party, the flaming red hair I’d never see again, sends me into tears. Leslie looks confused, and carefully moves my food as I start to cry.

“Oh god, what’s wrong?” Ryan asks me, hugging me again. He was very huggy today. Then again, when you don’t see someone for nearly three years… it was hard to not be a bit hug happy. Like when you get your first ray gun, you’re suddenly trigger happy, willing to shoot whatever strikes your fancy.

“Poison’s done.” I say into his ear.

“But… what happened to Ghoul and you?” He asks me, a hint of confusion in his voice. “I always saw you and Party together…” he murmurs into my hair. Ah, the benefits of having a guy friend who there was no sexual tension with. Never could be, I had the wrong parts for Ryan’s liking. “But… you gotta tell me the story.”

“I promise, once we’re out of here… I’ll tell you both the story.” I say, smiling at Northern Lights. He smiles back and nods, then moves to his bed. “But first… I have something else to tell you.” I start to spill the secret about the baby I was going to be having –that was a fact, I was sure as the sun to rise going to have this baby- a baby sometime. Ryan would be delighted, or so I hoped.

Before I can say the words, the guards throw open the door, and Korse enters.

“Come with me.” He says, and I sit on my bed. “If I have to ask twice, you will be punished. Now is the time for you to be catalogued and for then you go to processing.” He makes it sound like I’m an item, a piece of meat. “And you must be inspected, though I’m sure your last physical will still be on record somewhere.” I get up and am handcuffed again.

“You know, usually, you’d buy a girl dinner first.” I hear Violet mutter as she’s lead out by a male BLI worker into the hallway.

“And generally, they’d be pink and fuzzy.” I add when I’m within her earshot. She gives a small smile, and we continue walking. Frank is lead out in handcuffs, and he’s obviously heard us.

“I prefer leopard print.” He murmurs. Violet and I both suppress laughs.

“I’ve never used em.” Jet says, walking out.

“I’ve had em used on me.” Bob says with absolutely no emotion. Everybody chuckles a bit, before being all simultaneously smacked on the back of our heads with a small asp-type weapon that hurt like heck. Mikey exits his room, as does Infernal.

“Tiger print is where it’s at.” Infernal says flatly.

“Pink fuzzy tiger print handcuffs it is.” Mikey says when he’s lead out of his room. “We’ll have to buy a set of them for our personal use. These are gonna chafe really bad.” He says, as we are led in a group down the hall eventually turning into another hallway, with a sole door at the end, marked with a big sign that read “Processing and Exam room.” I knew this room. I hated this room with a passion so deeply rooted; it was at the very core of my being.

“Hello children.” A voice says as we are led single file into the pristine room. The only color in the room is from the green chairs where we are forced to sit on. Thankfully, they’re comfy. My whole body ached, my lower back especially. That and my head throbbed and stung, nearly in time with each other. I had the worst migraine the world had ever known, and when I got migraines… it wasn’t happy fun time for anybody within a three-zone radius of me. We are then let free of the cuffs that dug into our wrists with the cool metal circles that restricted our ability to fight. God what I wouldn’t have given for Party’s hand to hold right then…

Hi mommy. a voice says to me. I hide my smile, proud that baby Ella was still here. I’m still here. Where’s daddy? She asks. I frown. Oh, is he in a bad mood? she asks me. How do you explain to a voice, a voice of your unborn child, that her father isn’t here?

he’s just sleeping. I answer her silently. Tired, you know?

Yeah, you seem pretty tired. And your subconscious? It’s all black and purple. No happy colors. I mean, black and purple are cool, ‘She really is his daughter. Not even born and she loves the color black’, I think as she talks. but I like pink. When you’re around daddy, your subconscious is all pink couches and flowers and stuff. I dunno, it’s weird. But weird is good, right? She rambles, just like me.

Yes, my sweet, weird is good. I’ll try to protect you, but the bullies here are going to try to take you. Probably going to give me a pill that will make you try to leave. But, I want you to just remember that mommy and daddy love you.

Okay mommy! she says. By the way… thanks for eating all that food. and just like that… the voice is gone from my head. I relax a bit, happy she was still here. Frank looks at me, and we all begin tapping on our chairs, using Morse code. We’d been lucky enough to have a kid who knew it a few years ago, and he’d taught all the kids how to use it. We modified it into KillMorse Code, so the teachers could use it to communicate without the kids knowing. Not very difficult, if you knew the key.

what’s about to happen? Frank taps, finger on the wooden part of his armrest, nail clicking.

{How bad are we screwed?] Violet and Kobra Kid tap.

well, basically, I respond What happens is they assess our bodies, and our talents. It can be trial by fire, or they might just ask. They take blood, a hair sample, and a physical description. Frank, with all those tattoos, you’re going to be catalogued, unless you have some makeup in your pocket that you can quickly hide some of them with I tap quickly, finger flying to race out the message. They all nod their understanding, and Frank bites his lip to stop a laugh. He flashes me a small container from his pocket, which I recognize as cover-up. He would have that with him. Gee would be so proud. He hurries to dab some on the tattoo’s he can hide, like his scorpion and his knuckles.

hope that’s waterproof Infernal taps. We all give her confused looks. remember? They make us all look uniform. Hair is to be kept up, and we all have to shower. That’s the one good part about this. Showers. She says. Violet shudders. Kobra grins.

Well…this is gonna get awkward. Mikey taps. We all actually laugh, and are wacked on the heads by the guards.

“Hey!” I say, and am wacked again. “Do it again, I shove that asp right up your as-” Korse interrupts me.

“Welcome to examination and processing. All rise please.” He says. We remain sitting. “Rise or I beat the hell out of you.” He says. We stand.

“No please, Korse?” Violet asks sarcastically as we rise. She’s smacked in the head. “Hey! I will shove that thing so far up your butt; it’ll hit the top of your skull!” She shouts. The Drac hits her, and I grab the belt loop on her jeans to keep her from hauling off and punching him in the throat.

“Calm!” I instruct. “Now is not the time! We have too much at risk.” I hiss and she nods, calming down a bit, still grumbling –in German might I add- under her breath.

Korse, still giving us a creepy smile, whistles. Four people come in, and sit down at a table in front of a raised dais. “Go ahead 069.” Korse instructs. “Down to your underwear and get on the turning platform. We have to inspect you for all physical flaws, and then catalogue you physically. Write down height, weight, eye color, and etcetera.” Frank steps forward, shrugging off his dirtied clothes, down to his boxers. We all try to not blush. We’d all seen each other in various stages of undress, but this was just awkward.

(Frank’s POV)

This, to say the least, sucked. I didn’t mind being nearly naked in front of strangers, privacy wasn’t something we were privy to at the Academy. Kids constantly barged in, and you catch them all doing stuff they shouldn’t be. We the teachers have walked in on each other more than once, and I used to date one of the girls in the room. So this wasn’t anything she hadn’t seen before. Then again, the other people stared at me like I was a piece of meat. I step onto the dais, into the harsh lights that shone down on me from above, like a spotlight.

The thing begins to spin slowly, and I hold my hands on my hips. “Remove the hands, 069.” Korse instructs. I hang my arms limply by my sides. For what seems like minutes, the platforms turns, and I hear the scratching of pens and quiet sound of papers being turned over, and the sound of a stapler every now and then.

“Please step off that inspection platform.” Korse instructs me. I roll my eyes, and jump off lightly, landing on both feet perfectly. He growls a bit at my disobedience to a minor detail. Though, he’d need to get used to that. I wasn’t going to just submit to their every whim. What’s the point in being a killjoy if you succumbed to BLI and its constant need for ‘normal’? The physicians lead me into another room. Well, not a room, so much as a desert.

“What is this place?” I ask, going to touch something on the ground. Under the sand, I reveal hard linoleum floor. So this was a room.

“This is an obstacle course, you look to be physically talented, so you must take the test.” The voice replies.

“Wait, do the others have to take it?” I ask.

“The mutant,” that’s Sun, I presume. “Will be put through her paces. Just her.” There is a momentary pause. “Please complete the course to the best of your ability. The obstacles can range from testing your physical ability, to your mental coping ability. Do you have any health concerns that may inhibit you from strenuous physical activity?” An electronic voice asks me.

I laugh. “If I say yes, will it matter?”

“Not much.” Korses voice says over an intercom. “But your time does matter. Get going!” he yells, and I look around. “Oh, you may need this.” My ray gun drops from a slit in the ceiling. I catch it before it hits the ground, and then my clothes come through. As expected, they were all white. White pants, white shirt, no shoes, no socks. I pull them on as fast as possible, including the white belt that drops from the ceiling. After those are on, I hold my ray gun, finger on the trigger of the gun. Hordes of Dracs start appearing. I start shooting, hitting most of them in two shots or even a single blast. They begin to drop, and I start running, for what I’m assuming are pretend rocks in the distance marked with a “finish” sign. I jump over the bodies of the Dracs I’d shot, when something grabs me. I shove a ray gun into its head and pull the trigger, watching it drop. Something grabs my ankle, and knocks my ray gun from my grip. Quickly, I’m pulled down, clawing at my attacker as it tries to hurt me. When I can see what it is, I notice it’s Party.

“You gotta be kidding me!” is scream at nobody in particular. “You’re with them?” I ask, and he punches me in the head. “The hell man?!? We were buddies! Think about that girl out there! YOUR girls!”

“I don’t care.” He snarls, and I look into my best friends eyes. Cold… dead… not his. Wrong color hazel. Completely wrong. This wasn’t my friend, my friend was dead. He was gone. Horribly, horribly gone. This was a test of my mental strength, of what I’d do for survival. I had no doubt that the gun he held was loaded with ammo that would ghost me, so I pull back and –unwilling to let myself think- drive my fist straight to his head, where I break his jaw. We tumble around, and I end up on top of him, pinning him.

“Sorry buddy, I gotta get outta here.” I say, when I see him pull a knife on me. “You just brought a knife to a gun fight.” I say, popping a single ray off into his forehead. He slumps, and I get up and keep sprinting for the end. Suddenly, I trip on something.

“Trip wire…” I mutter. “Wait… what’s it trip?!?!?!” I ask to nobody in particular. Suddenly, things are very hot. A ring of fire springs up around me, and I stand up. “How the hell am I supposed to get over this?” I ask. The room is laughing at me, I can tell. “Over and under, maybe through…” I say to myself. “But there’s always a way around.” I notice a small gap in the flames, a small rectangle that I could dive through periodically. I tried figuring out the pattern, which appears to be random. I move my foot one step to the left, bracing myself to just run through it and stop drop and roll afterwards. That’s almost what I have to do, before I realize the pattern. It was almost like a rhythm, like a beat. With an easy jump, I make it through the ring of fire. I stumble to my feet, and grab my ray gun, continuing to run. I jump and flip over different rocks and random pieces of metal that are dotting the landscape, and see the other side approaching.

My legs are pumping as fast as I can humanely get myself going, lungs burning for the air that won’t come any faster. My muscles burn and ache as the lactic acid begins to build up. I’m so close; I know I can make it. I leap across a thin trip wire in the sand, barely missing the height I needed to jump to trip it. I clear it, making sure it remained untouched, and dive for the circular target that is my endpoint. When my body crumples in a small, aching heap on the center, I relax a bit. I’m panting, exhausted, sweaty, scorched a bit from the fire. Just when I start to relax, I stand up. My legs are shaky, but eventually stop wobbling so much. Feeling confident, I smile, hands on my hips triumphantly. The Academy had prepped us for anything BLI threw at us, and I’d just shown them just what a 5’7 man could do, given the right motivation. I was proud of myself, and move to walk to the door marked ‘exit’.

That’s when the floor falls from beneath me.

(Two Hours later)

(Sun’s POV)

As we were led into an all white room, I took a deep breath. The overly clean smell of the room, actually unnatural in its purity, overtook my sense of smell. There was no dust in the air, no contaminants. WE were experiments after all; we had to be kept in a clean, sterile place. This room was legendary, we’d been told. It’s the room they first experimented on people in.

“Do you remember that corner, pet?” Korse asks me. I nod, and se the blood stains that they just couldn’t get out of the linoleum floor. This is where I’d been put through most of my surgeries, most of my gene replacement therapies that made me into the weapon I am now. My eyes flit around the harshly lit room, the light exposing every detail of the space around us. My vision, having been upgraded in an experiment, is noticing the tiny cracks in the wall, the tiny spots of dirt. “You all are filthy, you need to shower.”

We line up outside a black door, and file into the room it connects to. Since I’m last in line, I take note of who’s in our line of showering people. That’s when I begin to freak out. We were missing one color of hair. We didn’t have a black haired person in the group. We were missing somebody.

Fun Ghoul.

We didn’t have Ghoul. Infernal, leading the line, Violet behind her, Kobra and Jet Star behind the purple haired girl, and Moonstruck behind them, with me taking up the back end. How could I have missed it? I was exhausted, I tell myself. The obstacle course was a breeze. It’s like the BLI engineers couldn’t comprehend that their coworkers had successfully created a mutant, and a strong one at that. I flew through it. But, when you mix using my abilities with the emotional stress from today, as well as a healthy dose of good old hormones, my mind was exhausted. I could barely do basic math right now, much less remember when we’d left Frank behind.

“No FG.” I whisper as we’re led into a room with bolted metal walls, with shower heads – more of holes, than heads- on the ceiling. They dripped icey water onto us.

“Strip.” An electronic voice stipulates. I look up at the ceiling.

“Usually, you’d buy a guy dinner first…” Mikey says with a small laugh. We all start stripping once a threatening looking group of guards brandish nightsticks and bats at us. My clothes crumple in a heap on the floor, tossed into a basket where other clothes are. Good thing those were replaceable. I’m left standing in my bra and underwear, Violet and Infernal choosing to keep their tank tops on. Somewhere, deep in my brain, I’m thankful I wore underwear today. Because laundry is hard to do at the Academy, it was rare for any of us to wear underwear. I’d done some a few weeks ago, and had been able to wear underwear today. I do try to, but when you have a nearly forty other kids laundry to do… you get behind. Mikey is in his underwear, as are the rest of the boys. Bob’s also got a tank top on. It looks suspiciously like one of my old ones that went missing…

With absolutely no warning, a torrent of hard, cold drops hit us from the ceiling. They pour down on us. Some of the holes release streams of water, other actual shower-type drops. A few are the hard, stinging spray type of shower water, which seems to almost tear a layer of skin off. Soap, in the form of white bars impressed with the BLI logo, comes shooting out at us from slots in the walls. I’m soaking, freezing, and horribly grimy still. We all catch the bars of soap, and rub ourselves down thoroughly after dampening them so they would create some suds. We all get soap on us, trying to scrub off the first of many layers of dirt that have been caked on by years in the desert. The water on the floor runs black, and I’m sure there’s clumps of dirt coming out of everyone’s hair. Ray washes the fro as best he can, and Kobra Kid scrubs his hair down. Suddenly, there’s a crack in the ceiling, and a large sheet falls from it, separating us. Violet, Infernal, and I are all separated off from the boys.

“Boys!” I screech, absolutely terrified. You can’t take us as a group, but you can take us one by one, given the right amount of forces. “Boys, we’re fine!”

“We’re good! Stay up, like your name sake!” Kobra yells back to me.

The water becomes warmer as it falls on us.

“Strip. Completely.” The voice demands.

“Isn’t this a bad idea?” Violet asks. Infernal Heartbreak nods. I strip, throwing my clothes in the corner.

“Jesus, girl, don’t hesitate or anything.” Infernal Heartbreak says to me with a look that meant she was laughing on the inside. “Nobody look, I guess we have to.” She says, turning into a corner. I, being me, had no problem being like this. I could morph my body to look like anything, so I had no reason to feel insecure… right? Violet strips, not caring. Infernal Heartbreak stood in a steamy corner, hiding herself.

“Now you may have warm water.” The voice says, and parts of the wall slide back, revealing knobs to change temperature, and the smell of the soap they were lacing into the soap dispensers.

“Who wants vanilla coconut?” I ask with a laugh, cranking the heat up significantly. I change the smell of the soap to a coconut vanilla smell, and then step back under the water.

I grab some soap from a dispenser, and scrub myself down as best as I can. “This is a dream.” Violet says. “This is such a dream. Soap, warm water, food….” Violet murmurs, and I’m laughing for once. Actual laughter.

“Shampoo!” I squeal, finding another dispenser. I take a generous amount, wet my hair down, and start washing my hair, as are the other girls. Violet’s hair actually looks bright purple, not a muddy brown-black, with hints of purple throughout. Heartbreak has her hair back to its color, the dirt and dust and sand fully washing out. The water shuts off after we finish getting all the soap off us.

“Walk to the doors, and out them.” The voice says.

“Naked?” I ask. “Hell no! This is what they did in the second world war. They’d tell them showers, they’d gas Jews and anybody else they felt like, they’d tell them dig a trench and they’d shoot them.” I scream to the voice, senses on high alert.

“We will not shoot you. We would’ve done that already.” Korse’s voice says. “Hm, looks like the beauty gene did work…” He murmurs. I feel very violated, and very, very, uncomfortable. My skin tingles, and I feel it try to blend into the walls, whole body turning a shade whiter. I stop before it goes all the way, not wanting to give that away.

“Go. Out the doors. Immediately. Coffee on the other side.” Korse’s voice reminds us.

All it took was coffee, and I gave Violet one look before we basically tackled each other trying to get through the doors first. I slide through first, and now the big deal is that I’m standing infront of Korse, completely naked. He throws me a towel, and I wrap it around myself, standing infront of Violet Rage and Infernal Heartbreak when they come out the door. They’re thrown towels, and I make sure they’re wrapped before I move away from them. The boys all stand across from us, sipping coffee, and wrapped in towels. I’m handed a mug embaloized with the black BLI logo, as are the other girls.

“Go, make it yourself.” Korse says, smirking. We walk past him, and make ourselves coffee quickly. When we each hold a steaming mug, we take our places next to our fellow instructors.

“We have to treat our lab rats with care, at first.” Korse says, striding over to us.

“Is everybody okay?” I ask my group. They all nod. “I’m sure I speak for the group when I say that we refuse to be your experiments.”

“Well, you’ve already been ours. Still our best experiment, albeit our failed one. Though,” He stands, turning my face side to side. “The beauty gene worked extraordinarily well. Did the change gene do its job?” I growl a bit, and before I can stop it, my eyes change to red. Korse snaps back, and if he had the emotional capacity, he’d gasp.

“SCARECROWS!” Korse screams, pushing a button on a small table near us. Three of the new and improved Drac’s enter the room. “Clothes!” He yells at the ceiling, and a set of neatly wrapped clothes drop onto the floor next to Korse. I grab them, and everybody circles around me. I quickly drop the towel, changing as fast as I can. Mikey pokes his head around, looking at me once I have the basics back on.

“K!” I yelp, and he turns back around. I pull on the pants and shirt. Surprisingly, they fit me. It’s a bit chilly in the room, when all you’re wearing black pants and a white tank top with the BLI logo on the chest. I grab a hair tie off Violet’s wrist, and tie my hair up in a messy bun, morphing the neon color out of it quickly, and changing my eyes to complete red, just to scare the hell out of whoever was about to see me. Breaking through the ranks of my friends, I look Korse in the eye.

“Yes?” I ask him. “Why’d you jump ten feet in the air Korse? Was it because of these?” I ask, looking him dead in the eye, changing my eyes to a blood red that glow a bit. It was scary, and it showed on Korse’s face. So he wasn’t completely emotionless…

Scarecrows grab me, and I walk with them out of the room, and down a hallway. “How you guys doing tonight?” I ask, and they don’t talk. “Can you guys even talk?” I ask. One nods yes. “Then why don’t you?”

“Not allowed, I bet.” I say to fill the silence that answers my question. “So… do the eyes thing really scare him that much?” The Drca on my right shrugs, and continues walking me down the hall. I pass my room.

“Um… that’s my room?” I ask, and they both chuckle, shaking their heads. “Hello? My room… right there?”

“Unfortunatly… you have to go see a doctor….” Korse says, over a microphone somewhere, on a PA system. “Some blood needs to be drawn.” He says. I hide my fear, knowing this means they will find out about Ella.

Mommy? Ella says to me.

shush, sweetie. Things are about to get very bad… very fast. I answer silently.

I’ll fight it. I’m small, but I’ll do my best. She replies. Where’s daddy? She asks.

Before I can answer, I see a cot being hauled out of a room. There’s a sheet covering the body on it, and the orderlies carrying it continue walking down the hall. The cot distracts me from Ella, and answering her. One of the orderlies trips, and a hand falls out from the side of the sheet. It’s attached to an arm, which dangles from whatever is under the sheet. I gasp, realizing that’s a dead body. I see the bruises on the body, the blood staining the sheet now. This body is recently dead. Maybe no more than an hour. My heightened sense of smell sifts through the scent, trying to recognize it.

“no.” I say, once the smell hits me. I jerk my arm out of the grip of the Drac on my right. The lightest smell of cigarette smoke, tinged with peppermint hits my sense of smell like a brick wall. If I hadn’t been tired as hell, I’d scream, I’d cry.

The orderly, struggles to keep his balance, trying to put the arm back under the sheet. He fails, and they set the cot down. The Drac who’s grip I’d fought out of reaches to grab me again. I pull back, and punch him in the face, and he falls back on the floor. Looking around the room, ceiling included, I notice there are no cameras here. I was able to fight. Maybe, just maybe, I could break out.

The other Drac holds my arms behind my back. He’;s stronger than most, and I can’t struggle enough to break free. He’s just too strong, or I’m just to weak as my brain begins to cognintly recognize what’s going on.

I knew that smell. I knew it better than any other smell in the world. As the second orderly puts the arm under the sheet, the one that carried where the head would be coughs, even though he’s supporting the bulk of the weight.

A single strand of hair confirms everything I feared most. A single little tuft.

Atomic, cherry red hair. Just a little tuft shows from under the sheet. The same color I’d woken up to seeing every morning for the past six months. The hair of the man that said forever wasn’t long enough with me. Hair that fell into beautiful green-hazel eyes. Hair that needed to be redone every few weeks, to cover the black it was naturally. Hair that was constantly being re straightened, because there was always one little wavy piece that would never do what it needed to, and stay the hell put. Hair that held the smell of cigarette smoke, and the peppermint shampoo Dr.Death Defying got for the Academy every few months through the Black Market.

The hair of Party Poison shows under the sheet. My Party. Mine.

And now he was dead.

The strangled cry that escapes my throat makes both the orderlies startle to the point where they drop the cot, and the sheet flutters off. The drac behind me jumps, giving me enough time to get to the cot. The sheet comes to rest next to the body that has rolled off, and me.

I’m on my knees, fighting back the tear forming on my eyes, feeling them go to his color. Mentally, I refused to comprehend. Mentally, I build a box around Ella’s voice, not letting her see this. She need to remember the Daddy I remembered, not this Party Poison. Finally, one tear falls from my face, as I look at the body of my beloved. He was pale, blood and bruises staining his face. One tear hits his cheek, and as it slides down, cleans some of the dust off. His hands are clenched, he’s still in his killjoy clothes.

Something bulges from under his shirt, and I grab at it, while the orderlies that approach me are knocked back with a fearsome snarl that rises from my throat. I was an animal, consumed with grief, reduced to sobbing over a corpse. I feel around the bulge, and notice it’s a dog tag necklace. I tear it off his neck, probably breaking it. Quickly and quietly, I loop it around my own neck, tying it securely. I remember these. We all had them on us, somewhere. Mine remained in my pocket at all times. They were for moments just like this, so we could identify each other, if we were killed and nobody knew who we were. Name, Birth date, and all the makings of a regular dog tag. I stand up, and the fighting skills embedded in my DNA come out. The Drac approaches, and I snap.

I’d finally lost it. The Drac comes at me, and I fly at him, throwing him into a wall. I’m almost sure I may’ve broken his neck, from the way his body lays. The two orderlies try to run, but I’m too quick. I catch one, pin it to the ground, and beat the living hell out of it. It lies on the floor, bleeding and knocked out. The second one is terrified, but I catch up to it. Yes, it. In my state, it was no longer a person. I knock it out, and then move back over to the body in the center of the hallway.

“Party?” I ask quietly. The figure doesn’t move. Silly me, expecting it to move. “Party…” I cry, finally letting the tears go. “no. You can’t be gone. I will not allow it.” I say, sobbing over him, on my knees. I put my head on his chest, lying next to him. How picturesque.

“Party!” I scream, after a minute of listening to silence. “wake the heck up! I need you! Oh god, ELLA needs you. You can’t DO this to her! Do it to me fine. Don’t do it to her.” I say to him. As corpses are known to do, he says nothing. I laugh at the hilarity of this situation. Here I was, the face of an Academy, talking to a corpse. He wasn’t even warm. Not like I could jump start his heart. He was going to be buried, or cremated, or whatever they did with bodies here. I cry over him some more, and then go silent. My eyes go grey. My eyes are dead looking, almost. His remain open. I look directly into them, place a single kiss on his forehead, and then lay next to him, put my head on his chest, pull his arm so it wasn’t under me, but out. Like we were sitting in the Blocks again, at night. How we used to fall asleep.

I stay this way with him for what seems like hours, though I know it’s only a few minutes. I won’t cry, I didn’t have the emotion left to do it. Instead, I just stay there silently, taking in every detail of how he smells, the color of his hair, the color of his eyes… anything that I could keep with me forever. Anything I could tell Ella about when she was old enough to understand.

When she was old enough to understand why mommy would never eat peppermints again, would never love the color red in somebodies hair, would never enjoy drawing as much as she used to. Why mommy would always cry on a certain day of the year, why mommy would probably end up never getting married. When she was old enough to understand that losing Party killed a piece of her mom, a piece nobody could bring back, that nobody could fix.

Right now, I couldn’t concentrate on Ella, because she didn’t need to know what was going on. Right now, I neded to enoy my time with Poison, my last minutes with him. Though I didn’t have the steady beat of his heart, or his occasional airy chuckle to lull me into comfort, I had the feeling of his skin on mine. The feeling nobody could replicate.

And then, much like birds have done in so many books, movies, and tv shows, I sing. If he was going to be dead, I was going to sing my heart out. This may be the last time I could do it. The song needs no selection, it bubbles up.

“What’s the worst thing I can say, things are better if I stay….” I start the song’s chorus, knowing it was a favorite of his. After finishing that song, I trail into another. “At the end of the world, or the last thing I see...” I start out, and keep going, choking back tears as I sing the whole thing, changing a few pronouns from she to he.

“All the ghosts that are never…” I finish, and et one final sob go. I place a kiss on his cheek, and one on his lips. Just for the feel. Which is sick, and feels disgusting mentally, and sounds horrible to anybody who would find out, anybody who could’ve seen. But it comforts me. That was my last kiss. Ever.

Just as I tell him goodbye, the door opens, and Korse and a handful of Dracs rush in. Three grab Party away from me, and I stand, legs shaking the tiniest bit. Korse smirks.

“Ah… so it was you… we thought it was the short one, with the tattoos…. But it was you…” He says. I nod quietly, and he, and the other Dracs, lead me to an office, where I sit. The tears had dried; I morph myself back to normal. A doctor enters, and I extend my left arm without any prompting. I was broken, they’d finally done it. They’d found my breaking point, and they’d used it. The doctors rubs an alcohol swab on my arm, finding a vein to draw blood from. I lighten the skin on my arm so it’s easier. I look at the Doctor, as he cleans the needle.

“This may pinch a bit.” He says, sticking the needle into the vein, drawing blood easily. I don’t even feel a pinch. All my emotion was caught up, trapped somewhere. A minute or so later, he’s taken three sample of blood from three different veins, making sure they had accurate results.

“I have to ask you to fill this out, or I can ask you questions and write for you. Which would you prefer?” He asks, sitting next to me, handing the vials of blood to a runner, and disposing of the needles in a waste bin. I stay silent for a moment, and the air conditioning kicks on.

“Just ask.”

“You have to be honest.” He says, pulling out a clipboard, and grabbing a pen from his pocket. Korse sits in the corner of the room. “Okay…” He looks at the form.


“Scarlet.” I say. “Scarlet Winterson.” I repeat, when prompted for a last name.

“Age?” He asks.

“Nineteen.” I reply. He goes through the basics, asking me the usual things. Any allergies, medicines I’m on… yeah, cause we can get medication at the Academy. What a joke.

“Are you pregnant, or do you think you’ll become pregnant, or have you had any sexual contact that could’ve rendered you preganant in the last week?” In the space of three seconds, my breathing stops, my heart speeds up, and I have to lie. They’ll take Ella. Korse smirks at me when I look at him.

“No, no, yes.” I reply. It seems like it takes days for the man to ask the next question.

“Have you had any gene therapy?” He asks, and I nod. “What have they implanted?”

“A beauty gene.” I say, and wait for his reply. “A strength modification, it made my muscles more efficient, and lighter, so I could move faster. I have a gene somewhere that allows me to change my apperence, though I’m not sure what to call it.”

“We need you test her blood for the following.”Korse says. “Check that her beauty gene latched on and stayed, the muscle, and all foreign bits of DNA. We need to know what we need to try again on her. Send her back to her room when she’s done.” He says, walking out of the room. “Oh, send her some food too. I’m sure she’ll need it, she’s too skinny right now.” He says. Right before he exits, he turns and looks at me.

“What would you like us to do with his body?” Korse asks with a malicious smile.

“Send it out into the towns.” I give an address. “Tell the people there that he belongs to me. They will bury him.” I’d sent him to a friend of mines. She’d recognize him, and bury him for me.

“For you my pet, I’ll do that much.” He says to me, and I nod my understanding.

The doctor looks at me after he leaves.

“I’ll ask you again, since I sensed some hesitation. Are you pregnant? You know we can tell from your blood, right?” The doctor asks.

I shake my head silently. “I’m not. If it shows in my blood, your machine needs fixing. ALL of you need fixing, I think.” I say to him. He chuckles a bit, and ajusts his glasses. “Seriously. All of you need to get fixed. Like a DOG.”

“I’m just a worker bee…” The Doctor says. “You’re free to go.” He adds, wrapping my wound in gauze, white, with the black BLI logo on it. “Oh, what’s your number?”

I respond with my number, and then walk out. Two Dracs grab me, lead me back to my room, and throw me inside.

Northern Lights basically tackles me, once I stumble inside.

“Are you okay?” he asks. I shake my head. “Bro! Come here!” He says, and Ryan get’s up off his bed, walking over to me. “You know she won’t calm down until you talk to her….”

“What’s wrong sweetie?” He asks.

“Party. Dead.” I say, holding up the dog tags. He gasps, and sits me down on my bed. The slot on the door opens, and a tray is put there. Ryan retrieves it, and the two others that come after it. One for each of us.

“Oh, they like you…” Leslie says with a chuckle, eating his quietly. “It’s rare to get extra food. But God do we need it…”

“Well, at least we get good food. Actual meat.” Ryan says, trying to cheer me up. “Now, what was the big deal about… ceartin people…. You two married?”

“No. We weren’t.” I’d never get married now. Ever. Nobody but Party was worth that. “besides,” I give a watery chuckle, cutting the buffalo steak they’d sent on my tray carefully. Rare. Good. “I couldn’t get married without inviting you two. You two are like my brothers.”

“How sweet!” Ryan says. God he was cheery. Leslie smiles at me, munching on his food quietly. Ryan hugs me. “Are you…?” He asks, leaving it open. I nod, and he stifles another gasp. Lots of gaspig today, I think to myself.

“Les!” He says, and Leslie’s head pops up. Ryan gives a quick nod, and Leslie’s eyes go very wide.

“Since when?” Ryan asks me. God he was excited. “How much do you know? Who’s?”

“About… two, three months? Poison, of course.” I answer, trying to not cry. “Ella.” I say, before he can ask anything else. “Her name is Ella.”

“Aw! Well, we gotta get you out of here before they can take her… or before you have her…” Ryan says, before releasing me from the hug. He knows the KillMorse Code, so he taps out a message. Leslie literally invented this code, so he pops his head up, mentally translating it to himself.

There’s a plan. Ryan taps out. To break out. In a week. We’ll make sure you are with us. We were going to run. To the Academy. Can you get us there?

I smile a little, and much on my steak. Ryan eats his. I answer him. Of course. We’ll need an estimate of people coming, the number. But… the group as to come. I go, they come. That’s my deal.

“Girlie… did you know…. What your eyes look like?” Ryan asks, ignoring my message. He gasps, and I feel them flick. Ryan looks under my bed, having jumped off my bed when they flicked to a new color. He hands me a shard of mirror, jagged, shaped like a bolt of lightening almost. I take it in my hand gingerly, trying to not cut myself, and take a glance.

“Oh my god!” I shriek. My hair had turned black. Jet black. All of it. Not even my dyed in streaks showed through with a strand or two, like they usually did when I morphed. My hair was black as night. But that’s not what scared me most.

My eyes were green. Hazel-green.

My eyes were Party’s color.

A/N: hey people! I've missed you all, but now I'm back! And Can I just say.... MAN do I have plans for the next three chapters! Ryan, I have BIG BIG BIG plans for you and Leslie! MAJOR plans! For the auditioned charecters, you all get to play a bigger part than I originally planned. Whee! Oh, also, tell me what you think, rate, review... etc etc. xx-A
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