"I know you have been instructed not to tell anyone about the events that occurred where you worked, but that's the problem: I don't know where or what this is about. I can't help you if you don't tell me anything" she sighs and leans forward onto her knees, looking at me so we're eye to eye.
"Johnny, I was hired by the government to help you. You and I both know that I'm the best at what I do. Let's start with some baby steps and tell me why you were there in the first place" my psychiatrist makes valid points as she concludes her reasoning.
She's been trying to help me for a little less than 2 weeks, but we've gotten no where. How do you help someone when you don't know what the problem is?
All in all, she's right. If I don't tell anyone, it's going to eat me up inside. It already has actually, nevertheless I have nothing to loose.
"I'll tell you. I'll tell you everything" I sigh and close my eyes, trying to block the emotions that resurface as I tell her exactly what happened that day.
TWO WEEKS AGO
"Ready for duty sir. Where am I to report today?" I say.
Sergeant Grayson looks at me for a while, as if contemplating a thought "Johnny, I'm stationing you outside the testing compound. You've earned it"
My heart starts to pound as I realize the importance of the job that has been given to me. Only the best and most trusted men are to guard the testing compound. Now, I am one of them. "Yes sir" I stand at attention, salute and start walking in the direction of the compound.
"You do rounds every 5 minutes, always check for anything suspicious... out of place. Johnny, you're protecting some of the most important people in the world" I respond with a nod as I stand with confidence. My hard work and patience has led to this exact moment.
I don't waste time as I do my first round around the compound. The interior of the compound is as plain as it gets, with plain grey walls. The only other colour comes from the white, illuminating glow from the lightbulbs. There are no paintings, no directory signs, or doors. The only door is the one that gives entrance to the testing facility. One way in, one way out.
I hold my rifle closer to my chest as I take my first glance at the reason why we're all here, "The key".
I estimate about 10 scientists in the room, 2 guards stationed inside at opposite sides of the door but that is not where my attention's at. A small, white round object stands in the center of the room surrounded by dozens of computers that all seem to be running some sort of code.
"So this is what project-5247 is about" I mutter.
Staring for too long is not an option, this action comes with suspicion.
The wide window that I walk beside comes to an end as I circle around the testing compound. The compound is huge, about 400 acres wide, with the roof 2 meters high. It takes 5 minutes to circle around the compound - that is if you're walking at a normal pace - and get back to the viewing window.
Halfway through the day, I get the urge to go to the restroom. I nod at a soldier walking past me in the opposite direction, as I take one last look inside the facility.
All the scientists seem to be focused on the ball, that seems to be... glowing. All of the computers read two words, "Programme successful". The guards are now gaping at the object too, who wouldn't? It's a magnificent sight. I decide not to waste more time as I glance one last look inside the compound.
The hair on the back of my neck stands as I suddenly hear shouts of anxiousness and horror, screams of "SHUT IT DOWN!" . I quickly grab my rifle and I sprint out of the bathroom, not bothering to close the tap where I was washing my hands. Red blinking lights match the rhythm of the alarm-siren that rings in the compound. I sprint my absolute fastest as gunshots ring.
The bathroom is on the opposite side of the compound, and there is only one entry into the scientist's facility. As I nearly make it to the testing lab, I grab my gun around my shoulder and aim in front of me, taking it off safety. My legs come to a halt as I stop at the door. My hand is ready to turn the knob but something tells me to stop. I resort to looking through the window.
I. am. petrified.
My heart stops beating as my suspicions are denied. Seconds before I got to door all the commotion stopped. I thought everyone was dead or the object was destroyed but both suspicions were incorrect. My rifle drops to the ground as I take in the scene in front of me, I lean against the window when a wave of dizziness consumes me.
Confusion. Horror. Disbelief. These are the most prominent emotions that I feel as I look inside the facility.
Nothing. Absolutely nothing is in the room. The equipment, computers, and the people are all gone. The room is completely empty with only the table that holds up the ball. I look left and right to see if any other guards ran to the scene but there is nobody. I master up the courage to pick up my gun and gather my facts:
1. Whatever they were doing in the lab was a success because the computers showed "Programme successful".
2. Halfway through something went wrong, so they attempted to shut it down but they couldn't. So one of the scientists instructed the guards to shoot at the object. They must've had a solid reason to shoot, because instructions from the boss says to open fire only if necessary.
So whatever this... thing is, it's dangerous and needs to be eliminated. I turn to the door and start to turn the knob but the same feeling I got seconds earlier comes back, only much stronger.
The question is, Do I want to die?
The sergeant and an entire squad run in my direction and that's when I answer my own question. I step away from the door and prepare for the worst as the squad heads into the lab.
The question is, "What did the ball do to everything in that room"
Word has reached far corners of Earth that Tallis Hurley has potential access to the unknown whereabouts of project-5247, widely known in the underworld as "The Key". No one knows what its real name is, let alone what its for or why the government was so interested in it in the first place.
Project-5247 is a government funded project that turned disastrous and wiped out its scientists off the face of the Earth.
Theories had circulated that it comes from outer space, and that it teleported everything in the room to its planet. It's no surprise that the government failed at keeping the events that occurred a secret. The people in the lab, ranging from professions of programming analysts, to the world's best inventors, to computer scientists, were pretty well-known and their disappearance was one that urged their families to find the truth.
After all, if they were truly 'still on Earth' they would have found their way back to their families, but nothing. Nothing from all 13 people that were in that room.
All investigations had come up empty handed in trying to locate the facility. The government made sure that that was never revealed. Every single agent was sworn to secrecy and threatened. You cannot talk at project-5247, not even with your wife.
The only piece of information that was gotten from the investigation was that Project-5247 is somewhere in America, although the government refuses to accept or deny this fact.
In reality, the testimony that they had gotten from the security guard was the only concrete piece of evidence that they had. Facial recognition was run, fingerprint searches were done, security footages were checked, they had done everything they could. The government had thought of Johnny as the main suspect, of course, but his alibi was confirmed through footage of him entering and leaving the restroom.
Johnny could have been making it up, but the poor young man was traumatized by the event, there's no way he could be staging the whole affair. Johnny was a decorated soldier who had served in Afghanistan, Iraq, and many other locations. He had fought for his country with pride and bravery. The vice-president had awarded him with a purple heart, only for him to retire and become a government special agent for a secret organization.
So the government concluded that project-5247 was dangerous, not to be known to man for detrimental consequences. They had failed, lost millions of dollars, but that wasn't their main concern. 13 innocent civilians were missing, and no else could use "The key" in result of "death".
So to protect the world, they shut-down project-5247, 'deleted' every file, and tried to wipe its existence off the face of the Earth, but they failed. Only one person can access those files and get to its location, because she has no choice.
And her name is Wolff.