Banging on my door, I bolted up sweating profusely. “Kinder, time to get ready.” Connie yelled as she burst the door open.
Trying to control my rapid breathing, Connie glanced up to see me rattled. For the first time, I saw some empathy as she asked, “Are you sick?”
She placed her hand on my forehead and I responded, “No. I just had a bad dream.” Connie nodded her head and grasped a dry towel. “Here,” she said and I started to wipe the sweat away from me.
“Thank you,” I replied in appreciation. Her calculating eyes glanced away from me and she got up saying, “Be ready down the stairs in two minutes.”
Already I was changed in my clothes and my hair in a messy bun, so I just lay back onto the uncomfortable twin bed.
What time was it? The sun wasn’t even out yet.
Getting up to follow my orders, I stepped out into the hallway to notice four bed rooms. Did this married couple stay in separate rooms? Weird. Going down the stairs to the living room, Bernard announced, “Eugene is going to take you to Miss. Teresa for your volunteer work.”
I nodded my head again and I followed the young Eugene, who looked seven or eight perhaps. Walking out with the streets lit by lanterns light, I asked the boy, “How long do I volunteer for the day?”
He smiled at me, “Whenever she says you’re done. I help my pa out cutting wood for the community for winter until dinner time.” In return he asked, “Why did you come here?”
“I want to help people,” I finally answered even though he doubted my reason. The sun was now poking above the horizon and we ended up at home with different plants loitering the yard.
Knocking on the door, an elderly woman popped her head out and her blue eyes flashed with excitement. “Miss. Platts, do come inside.” I nodded my head over to Eugene and said, “Thanks,” before entering the home.
“I’m so glad you’re here, Miss. Platts. I have so much to pack up for today’s trip.” The woman handed me a list and stated, “Go over into that cabinet and collect everything on the list.” She placed a bag in front of me, “Place them in her my dear. I’m going to get my medicines ready.”
Glancing down the list as I walked over the cabinet she instructed for me to go into, I noticed many medical items listed; gauze, tape, stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, band aids, antiseptics, scissors, scalpel knife, needle and thread.
Closing the bag up, Miss. Teresa carried out a bunch of herbs and plants grounded up in glass tubes. Placing her stuff into another bag, she said excited, “Ready for work?”
I nodded my head, though in the back of my mind I was slightly nervous. What work?
Grabbing both bags, Miss. Teresa gave a pleasing smile and led me out of her home. “A lot Factionless come to us, but some can’t, so we are going out to the city.”
After walking over five miles, we had made it to the main part of the city and out yonder a group of people seemed to be getting riled up and standing close to a Dauntless force. Miss. Teresa whispered, “This doesn’t look good.”
When edging closer I could hear, “We were here first and were not moving. You can’t make us.”
“By orders, you must go back to your boundaries or be punished by law. Now please, revert back to you jurisdiction.”
Miss. Teresa approached, “What may be the problem here gentlemen?”
Another man retorted, “None of you business stiff. This is a Dauntless concern.” I knew that voice oh so well. Eric.
Glancing away, I hoped he wouldn’t recognize me.
People were shouting and the tension was rising out of control. I felt like I was being swallowed by the crowd.
Eric’s eyes were about to land on me until suddenly the sound of a gunshot silent everyone and all eyes seemed to land on a Dauntless holding a gun in surprise. He said white as a ghost, “He grabbed for my gun. I didn’t, I-” Even though it was an accident, Miss. Teresa checked on the dead man as the blood crept to my shoes. I felt sick.
Before I knew it, everything broke out chaotic and I was punch by a missed attack on the man next to me. With the surprised force, I twirled to the ground hard hearing more gun shots go off.
Raising my throbbing head up, the world was spinning and blurry. The only thing that stayed constant was the piercing noise of the near shot ringing through my ears. Even when I pressed my ears, the noise the high pitch tone wouldn’t dissipate.
Trying to focus on my surrounds, I crawled on my knees to escape the battle field. With my hearing coming back, I could hear Miss. Teresa say my name. Without a hitch, she placed her hand on my waist to lift me up to my feet. She was directing me away from the action before the sound of a woman called out for help.
Both of us stop to observe a Dauntless woman holding her shaky hand toward us. Quickly, Miss. Theresa grasped my hand and placed it onto the girl’s neck that was gushing blood. “Stay with her. I’ll get my bag.”
I couldn’t protest with her disappearing from my view. Glancing back with the world become one again, the Dauntless woman was crying as blood covered my hand. Her glassy eyes search my frozen ones. She said, “I’m dying. I’m going to die.”
Placing my free hand into hers, I firmly said, “You’re not going to if you don’t give up. Miss. Teresa is going to get you better.”
Surprisingly I wasn’t shaking like I thought I would be. In that moment, I was to focus on her pain of the wounded woman to notice my pity terrorized feelings.
Thankfully a few seconds later, Miss. Teresa reappeared into view with her bag. Quickly she worked on the Dauntless woman that held onto my hand tightly. Another Dauntless soldier approach to our aid and her partner lifted up to take her to a medical facility.
Glancing up, the Dauntless back up had finally arrived and many of the Factionless were now on their knees with hands on their heads. Again I only held assistance to Miss. Teresa, who no doubly had more medical knowledge on stitching up wounds, splinting a leg, reattaching an ear and so on.
I had counted now three killings and eleven injured as we made our way around. And every time I noticed a Dauntless stone cold body on the ground, I held my breath. And sadly enough, I was pleased because it wasn’t Ezekiel.
Finally sitting on a curb, I drank a little bit of water from the canteen Miss. Teresa offered and she stated, “I’m sorry for you being dragged into this today. I was hoping for you to see some soars or cuts, but you did phenomenally.”
I wasn’t really responding much still feeling shocked from today’s incident. “What happens to them?”
Miss Teresa said after taking the water I offered her now, “Most of them will go back to their sectors, but a few of them will be put on trial.” Giving me a hand to stand up, “I think today was enough service work. You can go home to relax if you like.”
“Do I have to report back home right away??” I boldly asked and she laughed, “I don’t care what you do. Just stay out of trouble and if I know the Gardner’s be home before 5 for dinner.”
Nodding my head, we both walked back to our faction and parted our ways. For the first time, I felt free and able to proceed my day with some motivation. Rounding the corner, I noticed stables and curiously I wandered close to find actual horses in a few stalls.
“Hey,” a voice called out and I realized it was the transfer Candor boy. He smiled at me and said, “I’m Aaron, Aaron Wright. Your Kinder Platts right?”
I nodded my head and I asked, “Do you work here for your volunteering?”
“Yeah, I’m the one and only stable boy.” He shrugged his shoulders and added, “It’s not so bad though, unlike you? Do you work with the butcher or a murderer?”
I slightly smirked at realization my whole smock and hands were bloody as could be. “I was helping the wounded today.” Seeing a bucket of water I asked, “Do you mind if I wash up?”
Aaron shook his head, “No go ahead. I’ll get more water at the stream later.” He shuffled hay around the one empty stall and asked, “So how are you adjusting here?”
Cleaning my hands from the blood residue, I responded, “Okay, I guess. How about you?”
He smiled over to me with his red hair, “Honestly, it’s kind of lonely how everyone keeps to themselves. I’m so used to people saying the first thing to mind. There never was once a dull moment of silence.” He sighed, “It’s hard to keep my mouth shut.”
“Seems like one heck of a choice you picked,” I said joking as I tried soaking the blood from the smock Miss. Teresa gave me on our walk to the city.
“Well, I’ve lived in a world where people discussed, dissected and argued what the truth is and best solutions are to our world problems. But when I sat in front of those bowls, I had this epiphany. I didn’t want to just circle around our problems with words, I wanted to take action.” He rested his head on the pitch fork, “I want to actually make a difference and see the results, even if it’s now just cleaning the stables.”
Shaking my head, I responded, “You’re very deep.”
He laughed, “Yeah knee-deep in shit.” Aaron glanced over to me and asked, “Why did you come? From what I’ve heard, Erudite and Abnegation don’t see eye to eye well.”
Ringing out my smock I said, “I don’t get into politics. I just wanted to help like you.” Glancing out past the land, I could just see the stream flowing in the wood area. Something in black caught my eye for a second.
If I hadn’t known better I say Ezekiel was out there now.
I asked half mindedly, “What time do you have?”
Raising his watch, the only possession deemed alright for Abnegation, Aaron responded, “Four-thirty.”
Nodding my head I said leaving Aaron, “Thank you. See you around.” I didn’t want to be late for dinner. That was a no no.