If I Could Stay

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Summary

Ami and her daughter Carlan await their fate while taking refuge in dorms allotted to them by the Corp. Soon, Ami realizes she has to make a choice: leave Carlan behind, or spread the infection?

Genre:
Scifi / Horror
Author:
Red Harvey
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
1
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
13+

If I Could Stay

The flume deployed from miles away, shooting up into the sky and dispelling a trail of smoke in its wake.

Another flume went up. Then another. Dozens more appeared, until the sky was a blue patchwork full of intersecting lines which rose and fell.

“But where do they go, Ami?” Carlan pressed her face against the window.

Her small hands splayed on the glass surface. Occasionally, her palm opened and closed, grasping at nothing.

Ami could see her faint outline in the window. Red flecks floated in her eyes, but when she blinked, they were gone. She hoped Carlan hadn’t noticed. There was precious time to spend together before she called on the Corp.

She considered Carlan’s question. There were many parts involved in answering, and she didn’t know how to fully explain the flume’s destinations, as she wasn’t sure.

“They go nowhere.” Ami paused. “And everywhere.”

As they spoke, the flumes continued departing, disappearing into the clouds and beyond. Ami and Carlan stayed at the window to watch. Each deployment lasted seconds, but the total deployment lasted an hour.

Hundreds of white shipments carried into the void.

Out of sight. Out of mind.

Ami’s eye itched, and when she wiped at it, her hand came away smeared with red. She used disinfectant to clean it off, trying to appear casual. Her demeanor betrayed none of the panic, none of the despair cresting inside.

A small gray button blinked slowly on the wall next to where they stood. Ami’s hand hovered over the button. Discreetly, she pushed it. The blink went from slow to rapid pulses. Everything would happen quickly now, and she was glad for it. She didn’t want to risk Carlan’s safety.

After the deployments ceased, Carlan crawled into Ami’s lap. She told her child comforting, familiar stories. Anything to forget what the flumes contained. What the flumes would soon contain, she reminded herself.

“We’re lucky to have been relocated near a deployment station.” She said.

Carlan nodded, her brown eyes opened wide in a beautifully brown face. She glanced from their sleeping mats to the cooking area. She struggled to form words.

Finally, she spoke from recovered memory. “Because the number of denizens lessens with each rotation?”

Ami kissed Carlan’s forehead. “That’s right.”

A chubby hand caught her face and turned it down so that they were looking into each other’s eyes. Ami willed herself not to cry. It wouldn’t do to get blood-tears everywhere.

“And you’ll not become a denizen anytime soon?” Carlan was expectant, small, and vulnerable. But the child was smart. Strong. The Corp would take care of her, make her stronger.

Initially, Ami’s instinct was to lie. A lie was alright, as long as it protected, right?

Despite her intentions, she answered, “Not anytime too soon, lovely.”

Soon was relative.

She hugged Carlan closer, watching the smoke trails dissipate into the air.



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Further Recommendations

Stacey: I live the ending without the epilogue. I am one of the weird ones that do not need the perfect ending. The book was a very good different. Thank you.

Gayle O'Leary: This story reminds me of books by Philip K Dick and Ray Bradbury. Sci fi dystopians that examine the harmful impacts of technology on humanity and how the pressure to conform brings out the worst in us. I'm a big fan of those stories, I bet you are, too.I think this story would be far edgier if y...

ridawahab1998: I think the story is very well written and well thought out, it would make a great novel.

Peni Victoria Wamoana: Wolf. Man what a great read. I didnt want to stop reading

azzalea: I dont like how they were so annoying for some reasonI like the storylineI would like to recommend this story to my friendsBecausee it’s SOO GOOD the horror got me

Maddy Swanston: I don't know how you do it. I enjoy your writing. Your books are different. Love them.

Lillianni Santelices Bandivas: Getting interesting!! Updte pls..

Jonesy : Was a short story but beautifully written and well put together , thanks for sharing this and keep writing you have talent.

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Jeremiah Benware: I would recommend proofreading your work.

Stacy Butler: Please say your going to update soon!! Another of your books i am in love with and cant put down!! Ive even saved to my watt pad account so i can have there aswell!!!! This book is awesome!!!!

excalibur_09: gripping storyline, nice twist.

Jamie Roberts: Absolutely love everything about it!

peppertree: Great read. Loved the first book so much, glad there's more:

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