Echo. All that I can hear is the constant echo of the Box moving up. I feel it moving and smell something awful. Suddenly the Box jerks up and I fall forward onto a crate of stuff sitting in front of me. I taste blood in mouth and realize that I must have bit my tongue or cut open my lip or something. I sit back up and think. What should I do? I feel around with my hands and reassure myself that there really is no way out of here. Then I lean against one of the sides and take a deep breath. I try to remember anything, anything at all, from my past that my help me in this situation, but nothing comes to mind. Nothing at all. I cant remember a thing. Not even my name! I spend a good hour or so trying to remember even the slightest detail about my life, but I cant. Once I accept this I lay down and try to fall asleep. It doesn't take long for me to drift into a soft, peaceful sleep.
I wake up when the Box jolts to a halt. I am about to sit up when I hear voices on the other side talking. Deciding it would be best to pretend to still be asleep, I stay still. I hear and the Box doors open and someone yells,
"Rise and shine Greenie!"
Then I feel someone jump into the Box with me. When I feel a hand on my arm and sit up and quickly get him in a position where I can break his neck if I needed to. As I quickly take in my surroundings I notice that there is a group of 40 to 50 boys standing around the Box looking alarmed at what I have just done.
"No one moves." I say as threatening as I can, "If anyone makes a move, I snap his neck."
"Alright, alright. Calm down." A blond boy says while cautiously walking towards me. I notice that he has a little bit of a limp and feel a pang of sympathy for him, knowing that he probably injured it somehow.
"I want answers." I tell them
"We will give you any answers you want, but you got to calm down first. None of this threatening klunk okay?"
"Why am I here? Where am I? Why cant I remember anything? Who are you guys?"
"This Greenie asks too many questions. I am leaving this one to you Newt." Some other guy says and then half the crowd walks out.
"How many of yall are there?" I ask.
"About 50." The blondie, who I am assuming to be Newt says. "We don't know why you are here. We don't know why any of us are here. We call this place the Glade and we are the Gladers. In a few weeks you will be one of us. The Creators took our memory. None of us can remember anything either."
"How did you guys get here?"
"Same way you did." Some other guy tells me as he drops down into the box next to me and the guy that I am holding hostage.
"Oh hey, Alby. Nice of you to join the party." Says the kid who is still stuck down here with me. "You gonna get me out of this klunk or what?"
"All in due time." The guy, Alby, says. "Now. What is your name?" He asks me. I begin to panic because I don't remember what my name is, but I refuse to show weakness. I tell them the first thing that comes to mind.
"Echo." I say. The guy I am still holding onto laughs.
"Yeah right. What's your real name Greenie."
"Stop calling me that." I tell him while tightening my grip on him.
"Alright. Echo, right?" I nod and he continues. "Okay Echo, would you please let my friend go?" Alby asks. "Then you and Newt can go on a little walk around the Glade together and he can answer all of your many questions as best he can. Okay?"
I take a deep breath and look at Newt. He isn't very big. Plus he has that limp. I should be able to take him if I need to. "Alright." I say and shove the guy away. When I get a good look at him I see that he is very lean and relatively muscular. He has black hair and tan skin. He rolls his shoulders and turns to Alby.
"I am heading out into the Maze." He says and and then turns to look at me. "Good luck with the new Greenie Newt." He says before pulling himself out of the Box and then running off. Alby and Newt help me out of the box and then Alby quickly leaves. Newt tells me that we usually do the tour of the Glade on the first full day for the Greenie, but since I seem to be handling everything pretty well, he could at least just show me where everything is. We start on the North East corner of the Glade and make our way around it as we go. All the while I am asking him questions.
"Who was that guy that was in the Box with me?"
"You mean the one you threatened to kill? That was Minho."
"He told Alby that he was gonna go into the Maze. What is the Maze?"
Newt motions to the massive walls that surround the Glade. "Outside of those walls is a maze. Its big enough that the Runners have been searching for the exit for at least three years and they still havent even found a clue to the exit."
"How could It possibly be that big?"
"I dont know. What makes finding an exit harder is the fact that every night when those doors close, the Maze changes. You can hear it. The walls moving and shifting. Making it nearly impossible for us to even have a chance at finding an exit, but we keep searching anyway."
"Who are the Runners?"
"They are the people who are chosen to run the maze. You have to be incredibly fast and have a great memory to be one."
"You gotta be fast so that you dont get stuck in the Maze over night and you gotta have a great memory cause you have to be able to memorize what you ran that day."
"Why cant you get stuck in the Maze over night?"
"No one has ever stayed the night in the Maze and lived."
"The Greivers will get you."
"What are Greivers?"
"They are what we call these big half metal half living creature monsters that are in the Maze."
I shiver just thinking about them. As I look around the Glade I notice that a lot of the boys are staring at me. "Why do they all stare at me?"
"Because your a bloody female."
"So? Havent you guys seen a girl before."
"There's never been a girl in the Glade."
"We dont know, but your the first one.
"I wonder why." I mumble to myself. Then I see a shiny movement at the edge of the woods. "What's that?" I ask while pointing towards it.
"That's a beetle blade. The Creators use them to spy on us."
"I dont know."
"Do you guys know anything about the Creators?"
"No. We dont know much about anything outside of the Glade."
"Alright." I say as I think for more questions to ask him. He stops in front of a building.
"This is the Homestead. We all sleep here." He opens the door and ushers me inside. Then he leads me up some stairs and into a room. The room is a complete mess and it smells awful. I cringe at the smell and he leads me over to a bed in the far corner.
"This is where you will be sleeping Greenie."
"What's a Greenie?" I ask him.
"You really do ask a lot of questions." He says. "A Greenie is the newbie that shows up once a month along with some supplies. They always come up in that Box."
"Tomorrow you will start your training by hanging out with the different groups and trying out their jobs and after that, wherever you fit in the best is where you will work."
"Cool. I get to meet everyone?"
"Yes you do."
"Alright. Anything else?"
"One more thing. The Glade only has 3 rules.
"Good that." He says and then walks out of the room, leaving me alone to think about everything that has happened.