She looked down into the eyes of her victim. They were so full of everything her own dull grey eyes lacked; hope, love, emotion...life. Not for long. After she was done with him there would be no semblance of the naive hope and sickening humanity still lingering in those revolting eyes. She had been assigned to torture prisoner 0842 until he either divulged information or was on the brink of death. Either way, he would be Converted, but for tonight, he was all hers.
“Where is the human camp?” She asked coldly. As a courtesy, the first question wasn’t under duress.
He was silent.
She reached down and trailed delicate, icy, fingers over the jumping vein embedded in his neck. She used to have a pulse, before she thought she could survive without one.
“Where is the human camp?” She asked again, dead eyes staring coldly into blue. Suddenly, the fingers tightened around his throat.
“I pity you.” He managed to choke out.
The three little words had an unsettling effect on her normally lifeless countenance. She drew back her hand as if she had been burned.
“Did you choose this?” He asked gently.
Suppressed memories suddenly came flooding back. Her sister, the accident, the doctors telling her that this was the only way to survive. To become “superhuman”. Yes, that was how they had advertised this simulation of life, superhuman. She was part of the first group, the only voluntary generation. The unfortunate product of a failed experiment.
She snapped back from her unusual, unwarranted reverie.
“Answer the question.”
He looked at her, an almost imperceptible light playing across his eyes. Hope. He had seen her split-second hesitation.
Her system had glitched but everything was back to normal now and she knew her orders.
“Let me jog your memory. I said, where is the rebel camp?” Her voice was dangerously low and her fingers were dancing suggestively over an ornately decorated box of knives. She carefully selected one of the shorter knives from its velvet-lined niche. She turned around, ready to inflict pain, fully expecting her question to remain unanswered.
“You would like it.” He said calmly, his piercing blue eyes boring into hers.
“That wasn’t my question. Where is it.” She said slowly, calmly advancing toward him, knife in hand.
“It’s a perfect match, cold but beautiful.”
“Everything within hundreds of miles of the Plant is cold, that doesn’t tell me anything.” She said smoothly, running the side of the blade along the man’s stubbly cheek.
“I could help you.” He said, ignoring both the implied question and the silver blade now dangerously close to his neck.
She decided to play along.
“Really? How could you help me?”
“We’ve developed a cure. A way to kill the monsters you all have become, to set you free, return you to your natural state.”
“How?” She asked, allowing a feigned glimmer of hope into her dead, gray eyes.
“I don’t know, I wasn’t on the team that developed it.” He said slowly, carefully.
She looked at him, her computerized brain determining his pulse, respiratory, and cardiovascular activity.
“Why are you lying to me? I thought you wanted to help me."She said, her face expressionless.
“Why should I trust you with sensitive information like that? You are holding a knife to my throat.” He said, seemingly noticing the instrument for the first time. “You don’t really seem to be playing for my team...”
Suddenly, something snapped and she seemed to break down. “But you said you would help me! Please. I can’t do this anymore, I need help! Please.” She forced her stoney features into something resembling desperation. This was certainly an unusual way to get information but, it seemed like the best way to get what she wanted from this human scum.
“In order to get the injection, you have to go to the storehouse.” He said cautiously, eyeing her somewhat skeptically.
She looked up excitedly. “How soon can you take me there?”
He laughed. “I’m not an idiot. I’m not just going to tell you where it is.” But, as soon as you get me out of here and show me we’re not being followed, I would love to take you to the cure.”
This was more trouble than it was worth. Her Fallen instincts all told her to just torture him, get it over with, and move onto her next assignment.
But there was something else there too, telling her to follow this lead, however unusual, to see where it went. Maybe it was the last remnants of her humanity struggling to resurface, maybe she was just bored and needed a change. Whatever the reason she made a decision that went against all the protocol programmed into her head, she said yes.