Days slipped through my fingers quickly enough to mean that I was sitting at my desk in the academy, waiting on my report finally. Had I made the cut? Had I completely and utterly screwed up? I kept my fingers crossed under the flimsy school desk with a hint of worry in my head. Did crossing one’s fingers actually work? I don’t remember. I think it’s just a fairy tale, probably. Or was it a superstition? Probably that.
“Daedalus.” My name was called sternly, not a single emotion to be found across my sergeant’s face but it forced my head to pop up almost immediately after.
My eyes strayed from his face to the paper he held in hand, the paper that told me if I’d passed or failed the minder academy. If I could get out on the streets and protect people and civil justice, all that stuff. First though, I’d actually need to stand up and grab the damn paper.
I forced myself up, away from the little desk and got my legs to walk towards him to take the stupid paper. I got close enough as I pleased and gently took the paper out of his hands.
It didn’t seem to faze him as he just pulled out another one and called “Bones.”
The volume was a little startling, no matter how many times I’d been yelled at by Sergeant Jonson in training. His voice got me moving back towards my desk without looking at the paper whatsoever. I was a little terrified. I mean, this slip of paper would potentially decide the rest of my life. I had some kind of a right to be worried about, right? Right.
I sat back down at the press wood desk and sat the paper in front of me, eyeing the reactions of the rest of my room. You could pick out who passed and who didn’t. Some were fist-pumping the air and grinning at their companions while others left the room completely or just let their heads hang down in defeat.
Okay. Here we go.
I turned the paper over to face me, and eyed the name in the left hand corner while I scanned down for my status.
Name: Daisy Daedalus
Date of Birth: 14/03/2015 (age 25)
Reason for Status:
Previous traumatic events deem the candidate too emotional for in the field action.
Holy mother of god, I’d failed. How did that happen? Previous events? Seriously? That’s utter BS. So what if my mother had been kidnapped right in front of me? That shouldn’t mean I couldn’t work towards stopping that in the future!
I popped up out of my chair and marched up to Jonson, holding the paper like it was a lit torch. He’d noticed me as I stood silently next to him but didn’t particularly acknowledge me, calling out names still. That’s fine. I can wait, buddy.
I’m pretty sure I stood there for a good 10 minutes before Jonson seemed finished with dealing out fates to my fellow classmates. Even then, he’d elected not to notice my furious face and feet tapping. Instead he’d chosen to go to his office after calmly stacking up his remaining papers and checking his watch a few times.
I followed him to his office and threw myself down angrily into the chair, waiting as he patiently closed the door behind me and sat down at his own desk, in front of me.
“What is it Daisy?” He sighed, watching as I tossed the paper down in frontof him.
“That. That right there.” I pointed at the failed status then the reasoning behind it. “That is it.” I growled, glaring at him.
“I still stand by it. Even now, you’re not displaying the proper amount of logic nor the ability to dissociate with stressful situations.” He raised a brow, daring me to challenge the claim as I glared even harder at him.
“You were a child of the foster system when it really wasn’t all that great. Abuse was rampant, and we both know you were a victim of it. Unstable foundations build in childhood lead to an unstable minder and that’s just not okay.” Jonson declared with finality, leaning back into his chair.
“Seriously? You know how much this meant to me!” I exclaimed, throwing my hands up in the air. He nodded slowly.
“I do. I know you’re just trying to right wrongs from the past but things are different now. America is different. Things fell apart in 2020 for sure with the discovery of gifts, but the new-founding fathers righted that.” He shrugged, seemingly trying to be understanding with me.
“Yeah, they righted it right after all the gifted were exterminated.” I scoffed.
There was plenty of investigation when I was younger as to why my mother had been taken from our home, why I wasn’t. The term Gifted floated around for a bit but after I’d been vigorously tested, it was decided that it’d been a run of the mill kidnapping in a time of chaos.
“Thats not my fault, Daisy. I’m sorry your mom got nabbed but this America doesn’t need a minder, hellbent on targeting possible kidnappings that are dead files.” This time he spoke with finality, that my plea had been heard but it’d been dismissed.
“Fine.” I mumbled, and stood to go for the door and show myself out. I had to guess the profilers had already assumed that would be my prerogative...bunch of quacks trying to get into my brain and figure me out.
“Daisy, look.” Jonson’s voice caught my attention from the door, making me look back at him with slitted eyes.
“I appreciated having you in my class and...I wish you luck. Call me if you ever want to just get together and chat.” He seemed earnest enough but I could care less. Right now I just wanted to go home, watch some shows, and eat cheesecake.
I knew deep in the back of my head as I left the academy that this was probably for the best. The profilers were only trying to find the most suitable candidate to protect the city and all it’s folks. That thought just didn’t coincide with my own idea of protection, I guess. Or maybe they just had something against me, no. Daisy, you can’t go around blaming everyone else for your issues. Life doesn’t work that way.
I’d wandered my way back home via the Underground Transportation System, it was clean...ish which was nice. I remembered at as kid at school we’d call it the UTI system for some strange reason...it was funny at the time. But I hadn’t had many interesting conversations on it like I used to when it was an older model.
Something about that flower print carpet with everyone’s footprints smeared into it as grimey outlines or water stains got conversation to flow around me easier. Possibly because it gave me something to focus on.
“Sault street. Arriving to Sault. Street. in 2 minutes.” The robotic female voice broke through my thoughts. One more street and I’d be home. Pulling my eyes away from the grey waxy floors I looked out the windows that showed me a flowing picture of varying green, black, and white.
I suppose it wasn’t really a window per say. Some of them took up the entire wall for the claustrophobic people while others took up only half for others with a fear of heights or motion-sickness. Guess you could cure all the cancers of the world but you can’t get rid of irrational fears.
I was hanging onto a pole for stability near the middle of the train when a tall guy bumped into me. I’m not sure who was startled more, me or him considering we both jumped and stared wide eyed at each other for a good minute. He looked quite shocked for some reason and I wasn’t sure why. I couldn’t put my finger on it the more we stared at each other but there was something funky with him.
Something that didn’t feel right.
He must have felt the same because right as he glanced at my minder-in-training uniform, he looked even more panicked and darted out the doors as soon as they opened. I thought about going after him and letting the justice driven individual in me jump him but after I thought about the fact that I was “Too emotionally unstable” for the job, I quickly let him go.