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Aberrant [COMPLETE]

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In a near future, you are either married by your 25th birthday or you are mandated into a government-sponsored dating program. Today is Isabella's birthday. and her life is about to change forever. Her dream lover is real and together they must unbury the past to find their future before sinister government forces determine it for them.

Romance / Thriller
3.0 2 reviews
Age Rating:

Chapter 1

Copyright © [2021] [Michael Harper]

All rights reserved. No portion of this book, story, or concept may be reproduced in any form without permission from the publisher, except as permitted by U.S. copyright law. For permissions, contact the author directly.

A floating bed hovered over soft pastel light within a shimmering place. It seemed like it was daytime, but it could easily have been night. The sound of a woman rustling on satin pillows and cotton sheets filled the void.

“He’s coming for me,” she said to herself.

Isabella, a warm twenty-four-year-old, sat with her legs folded in the middle of a pile of cushions. A female in every sense, with blue hair cascading her backside. She wore sheer underwear while gazing into the distance. She clocked the room slowly

“Again, I don’t dare go far.” A deep rumbling of the earth created soft vibrations felt in her bones.

She peeked over her shoulder. The whisper of her hair brushed the skin on her shoulder. A blue cherry blossom tattoo on her bicep blended in with her dark lipstick that accented a demure sensuality.

“I hoped he likes my blue cherry lipstick. It matched my tattoos. I hope it tastes as good as it looked.”

A man wrapped around her from behind. One hand cupped her breast with the other palm on her stomach.

“I felt his hand cupped my breast as the other wrapped my belly. I turned to face him, and melted in his gaze.”

She gasped

“I know my limit. Enjoying it.”

She held his neck and kissed him with desire. Isabella submitted to the euphoric moment. Submitting to his passion.

The faintest sound of “Earned It” by The Weeknd was heard somewhere, and everywhere.

“And yet.”

He had a gentle, warm shade of silvery-white hair and blue-tinged cuticles. His blue tattoos covered his spine, and his forearms matched her markings. They matched hers.

“I love it all. My inner itch wanted him inside me. ”

A bluish-white symbol shimmered on her ass cheek as he stroked her hair. Brushing it with his strong fingers. Their passion electrified the air as they kissed. He laid Isabella onto her back and mounted her. He nuzzled her neck. She gripped his shoulder and kissed him as she hooked a leg onto him. She nipped his lower lip before swirling her tongue on his.

The blue markings on her ass cheek glowed with eagerness. Yearning. Craving. Primal.

He sighed into her neck. The intense kiss melted with the softest scratching of her skin

A female voice INTERRUPTED the moment, “What the hell are you doing? Excuse me! Bella!”

Isabella woke up groggy. Her tongue still lashed the pillow full of drool. Her face was flushed from the intense dream.

“Bella! I gave you that pillow to sleep on, not smash it with your dirty mouth!” insisted the voice.

ISABELLA replied, “… Huh?”

Daylight spilled into the room filled with a woman’s saccharine decor. A bra hung on the doorknob with a strap. Isabella wore poplin shorts and a tee shirt. Isabella leaned up onto her elbow. She groaned in protest of waking up. She fought to open her eyes.

“Bright light. Turn it off.” Bella said against the sun coming in like a raging bull across the fine china of her deplorable mess and her eyelids.

“Really? You can’t put your bra in the basket? The doorknob isn’t there to air it out.” The voice chided Isabella, “Let me guess, that dream again?”

Bella mumbled as she pulled from the quicksand of sleep.

Ciera, a sassy twenty-three-year-old, opened the curtains. Penetrating light revealed her dark curly hair and spaghetti strap tank top with jeans.

“Thanks for the love, Ciera, but yeah. At least there I feel like a goddess. Can I go back to bed now?” Isabella responded.

Ciera finished tying the draperies and shifted toward Isabella. She stared at Isabella, concern rising. “No, sweetie. My pillows can’t take any more.” Ciera giggled.

Ciera stepped close to Isabella, “You got potential, Bella.”

Isabella leaned up on her elbow. “It’s getting more vivid each time. Why?”

“Dunno. But the pillow sure doesn’t love it. Or it’s freaky perverted stuff.” Ciera pulled the soggy cushion from under Isabella. She looked at the battered pad and into Isabella’s embarrassed face.

“You’re jealous of it. Just admit it, Ciera.”

Ciera smiled as she sat on the bed’s edge. “Maybe. I’m envious of losing my best friend to a slutty fantasy.”

Her countenance had a frankness taking Isabella off guard. It made her feel off-guard and vulnerable. Isabella patted Ciera’s hand, “I love you, sis. Even long after the horrid way, they’d try to marry me to some stranger.”

Ciera choked up at the sincerity, but caught a sudden tear. “Ugh! Anyway, it’s time to get up.”

A thin necklace laid on Ciera’s neck, and glasses sat on her nose. Isabella laid back down. “Why don’t you mind your--“

Ciera threw the pillow at Isabella, smacking it on her back. She turned with faux anger. She cried out, “Ouch!”

“Come on, Birthday Princess! Those chocolate buttons will melt if you don’t hurry.”

“What buttons?”

Ciera teased her, “Guess you need to hunt for them. If you have time.” She paused for a moment, then, “Tardy girl.”

Isabella scooted to the edge of the bed with reluctance. A small mixed breed of turtle and baby dragon jumped onto her lap. It purred as it rubbed against her. Isabella stroked the pet as she watched Ciera leave.

Ciera talked over her shoulder, “And if you’re late with the rent this month, Isabella, you won’t have an apartment to stay in either. Hugs and kisses! Love you, Bye!”

Bella threw a pillow at the door as Ciera closed the door. She could hear her going downstairs humming.

Isabella looked into the turtle-dragon’s eyes, “What do you think Moo Moo?”

Isabella covered her yawn. She stroked Moo Moo’s head. The creature purred.

“You’re right. Errg… But I want to snooze.”

She rose and stretched to the ceiling. She plopped back on the bed to get her smartphone. Her finger slid a security code to unlock it. She tapped an app to play music. Something like “Piki-Piki Skirt” by Arunika (or similar) played.

“Not only without a paycheck, how else will I get my tunes?”

Isabella went to the nondescript bathroom. She turned on the shower. Then brushed her teeth as she waited for the water to warm. Afterward, she jumped into the water spray. Isabella dropped her clothes to the floor. The mirror grew foggy. She sang the song.

After the shower, she threw a damp towel on the bed. Music played as she faced a half-full closet in her panties. She hesitated, chose a shirt, and grabbed the bra from the door. She did a sniff test on the underwear and put it on.

Moo-Moo mewed a meow.

“What? No. I will not just wear panties. Do you live in the same world as me?” Bella told Moo-Moo.

Moo-Moo mewed a meow. Bella pulled a shirt off a hanger. She tugged a midriff shirt on.

Moo-Moo mewed again.

“Yes, the three-day rule works for bras. It’s panties that don’t follow the rule. She paused. “What do you think of this shirt?”

Moo-Moo was silent.

“Yep. Comfort is best. Now, where did that chicklet put those chocolates?”

Isabella hurled her clothes, tossing the room. No success.

“Oh, she’s going to regret this.” Her tone was full of mirth and frustration.

She put on a pair of earrings and stepped over a pile of dirty clothes. She struggled on a pair of jeans from off the floor. Isabella turned off the music, grabbed a jacket, and ran out the door.

Moo Moo peeked from under the clothes. The fledgling dragon had a dreamy gaze and curled up before falling asleep. It snored

Outside the apartment, the sun rose. Autumnal colors exploded in the trees. Dry, dead leaves crunched beneath people’s feet. Chill gusts blew. Rain threatened from the horizon. Isabella and Ciera came down the stairs.

“Don’t get caught fantasizing about your dream lover. If you do, I want all the juicy details later, okay?”

Isabella replied, “You’re going to miss your bus.” She takes a step, “You owe me buttons!”

Ciera shouted as she strolled away, “All the wet details. Even melting buttons!”

Ciera chuckled as she waved goodbye to Isabella.

Isabella waved back, “Bye. See you later, pain in my ass.”

Ciera stepped onto a bus, while Isabella stopped in front of her seven-year-old Chevrolet Spark. “Damn. It’s cold.” She contemplated for a moment as the brisk wind gusted.“Iced again?” She pounded on the car door handle to break the sheet of ice. It cracked and fell.

At the corner of the block, a unknown man in a hoodie watched Isabella. His face was hidden in shadow as he softly coughed. He walked away with leaves crunching underfoot.

The messy car interior required a hazmat suit and Clorox. Snacks and a half-full water bottle rested on the passenger seat. A pair of boots on the floorboard sprawled over a bag of old receipts, melted candies, and scattered change.

The sunbaked car had some age. The unfortunate thing screamed out, “well-used, but loved.” A chaotic disaster in motion.

She started the car, laid her windbreaker onto the seat, and put on her seat belt. The windows fogged up. Isabella turned on the defroster and groaned when it didn’t kick on.


She banged the dashboard, hoping it would work. She saw the low gas warning light come up.

“Double dammit.”

She let out an exasperated sigh as she drove away. A few cars traveled the road. Varieties of people bustling in their everyday lives. The pan-ethnic state of humanity on display.

“Let’s see what the next catastrophe will be.”

She turned on the radio.

“Why is it always talk radio?”

She tapped the search button to change stations.


“We’re at the breaking point — the frailty of our species. We cannot conform to the fear the aberrant loyalists push in their warped agenda. If these--“


“Are we that bad? Wanting the traditional hetero-normative survival? What we hear through movies, books, and music throughout our entire culture is that men are bad; they have to be pushed to the back, they shouldn’t be listened to, but what that’s done to your generation...it has created hopelessness in many of these guys. They’re lost, they grow up in a broken home, or maybe just a bad home. No one’s there for them. It’s a stupid playbook. Then they don’t know how to meet a woman’s needs, because now they’re quiet, passive, and introverted. They lack motivation. And now we have her in her bra and panties yelling at him for the entertainment of the neighbors, embarrassing him more. They call her outrageous, drama queen, and a witch. If we can support these guys with the Marriage Act supplement bill-- They call us binary--“


“This is the reason we have the Singles Tax now sitting at 15%. Most women want to be wife, mother, and homemaker—and are happy in that role-“


“Scientists around the world are working to fix the fertility decline. There are now confirmed seventy percent of women. It is murky weather, rising global temperatures are a factor in female menstruation cycles. -“

Isabella stopped on a classical music channel. A look crossed her face, which said it all. Yuck.

She drove into a small city. Billboard signs pushed artwork a variant of a theme from the radio.





People ignored the advertisements. Isabella didn’t pay attention to the ads.

I know Ciera was being ridiculous, but I’m worried. Can my dreams get me in trouble? Why does it feel so perfect? Isabella thought to herself.

She stopped at a crosswalk. People bustled.

Everywhere I look, I’m told what to do, what to think, and whom I should love.

The crosswalk cleared, and she proceeded on her way.

Maybe I need a man? It has been a while… okay, maybe more than a while.

She parked in a lot of a restaurant. Isabella walked through the employee entrance.

“Damn, I’m late. I hope he doesn’t see me.”

She spotted her boss, Mr. Florian, the forty-year-old asshole.

The asshole berated a vendor, “What part of I ordered four, not a dozen, did you not hear? I will not pay you for your incompetence. Were you born that way? Stupid? Now go. Take the whole damn order with you. I’ll go to another company that has workers that can do basic math. Four does not equal twelve.”

Isabella slid toward the back to change. She lowered her head. Her eyes, wide with insecurity, stay focused on her feet. Isabella tugged her shirt down.

“Ms. Isabella. Tardy, again?”

She looked up, sheepish. Caught.

“Good morning, Mr. Florian. I was just--“

“You were going to get my coffee and meet me in my office.”

She saw him boring a hole through her. He clenched his jaw.

“Okay, I’ll bring it in a few minutes. After I change.”

“Not if you want to keep your job.”

Several workers of different ages and genders watched the exchange. Mr. Florian swept his gaze, and everyone hustled back to work.

A forty-three-year-old, irritable woman with salt-pepper hair looked sympathetically toward Isabella as she followed Mr. Florian into his office.

Stacks of papers lined the desk. Posters plastered the walls. Dim light exposed an overflowing trash can. On a nearby shelf, a CCTV system recorded the restaurant. Isabella entered with a Styrofoam cup.

“Here’s your coffee, sir.”

She tried to find a space, failed, and placed it between stacks of folders. Isabella turned to leave.

“Close the door.”

He looked up at her from behind a computer monitor. She hesitated, uncertainty in her eyes.

“Close the door. Or you go home. Choose.”

She closed the door, but leaned against it with one hand on the knob.

“I won’t bite, unless you like that.”

He walked from behind the desk. Stepping over the messy trash can, he strolled over to her.

“Sir?” she said.

He stared at her for an uncomfortable moment.

“I can’t find the weekly time sheet. I keep losing it. I don’t know, is it me?”

Isabella side-eyed him as she went behind the desk and took a seat. She clicked the mouse.

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