Home Sweet Prison
I was flying. I was in the sky, moving past clouds with a smile on my face. I was free. I never wanted to go back. Go back where? I don't know, but I wouldn't turn around. In my gut I felt that something was wrong, feeling an odd warmth in my throat. It didn't matter. I look back and see fire, far down below on the ground. Did I do that? I couldn't have, but for some reason I feel like I did. I can hear their screams in my head, the noise is too much. I suddenly start to fall, my own screams filling my head, watching as the ground suddenly appeared in front of my face.
I wake with a start, my heart beating out of my chest as sweat ran down my cheek. It was only a dream. The same dream I've been having for a long time now. I was already used to waking up in a panic, luckily I was silent in my sleep, so I didn't disturb anyone as I fell from the sky. I could see the moon high in the sky as I look out the window, glancing at the digital clock in my room to see it was a little after midnight. I let out a sigh, slowly sitting up and glancing at my roommate across the room, who's snoring was thankfully quiet enough to let me sleep through it.
His name was Marcus, and he was okay. He could see in the dark and his claws made high fives risky, but he was okay. Other than that, he was a normal, skinny white boy that was a few years younger than me. Course, he was also a bit unstable, many of his mutations being mental ones. I stand up off of my bed, heading over to our shared dresser and digging around inside, using the moonlight to see the general look of what I was picking. I fish around and feel one of Marcus's hoodies, the thick fabric feeling nice against my skin.
Marcus was a bit of a privileged Mut, if those existed. His family, being extremely successful business people before and after Muts started appearing, were allowed to send him things, mainly money, for him to use. My parents in essence didn't exist to me, I didn't know their names, nor their faces, so why bother caring? I pull out his hoodie, holding it towards the window to see it better. It wasn't bad actually, a dark green hue throughout. Nice and simple.
I'm not a thief, though I knew plenty, so as I debated whether or not to take it I couldn't help but wonder if he cared about it. Of course, I assumed he did. So, with a sigh, I start to place it back in the drawer. "Whatcha doin'?" I let out a yelp of surprise, quickly covering my mouth to quiet myself. I turn around to see Marcus's glowing green eyes just above his pillows, "Lookin' through my stuff?" He asks, tilting his head in a way he knew creeped me out.
I take a moment to catch my breath, "I... Was just looking for what I'd want to wear tomorrow. You know we have to share the dresser." I say slowly, hoping that my half hearted excuse would make him drop the subject.
But of course, it didn't. "Heh, I thought that was basically the only outfit you had? Plus, it's like, one in the morning." He says, probably smirking to himself, though I couldn't see in the darkness. "You were going through my clothes weren't you? You got a crush on me or somethin'?" He adds, sitting up more.
My face starts to burn, "No. I just... Was seeing if I could nab something for myself. You've got so many hoodies, would you really care about losing one?" I say honestly, assuming that Marcus had been watching for longer than I thought.
I hear Marcus laugh, probably at my red face, "Heh, sure, whatever. You want one? Take one. I really don't care." He says, I hear him shrug in the darkness. My face starts to go back to its normal hue. "Buuut. You know. I can't just give that away for free. You gotta earn stuff." He adds after a moment, no doubt seeing my annoyed glare as he spoke.
I sigh, already knowing what he'd probably ask, "Fine. What is it? Nothing gross." I say, or, more accurately, groan. Marcus had always had a slight crush on me, and he wasn't exactly subtle. It was almost flattering, but knowing he was so unstable in the head made me not even bother to get close to him.
Marcus pauses for a moment, most likely for dramatic effect, "One date. That's all I want. Tomorrow, after your interview. You and me, a nice dinner, maybe some sightseeing. Then, you can decide whether I'm worth it or not." He says smugly, as if he thought I'd jump at the opportunity.
I narrow my eyes, glancing down at the green hoodie and feeling it between my fingers. Just one date? I could do that. Was it worth getting Ian and his gang off my back about my clothes? Probably. So, with a shrug, "I guess. Fine. But don't expect me to fall head over heels for you dude. You're like, basically in highschool." I tease, shaking my head.
I hear Marcus let out an excited, "Yes!" under his breath. "Nice, you won't regret this Kass. We Muts have to stick together right?" He says cheerfully, not bothering to hide how excited he was.
I just shake my head again, "Oh jeez. Listen, I know we're like, roommates and all, but please don't be weird. I'm not into you, like, at all. And I mean that in the kindest way possible. At most, you're a friend, and this 'date' won't change anything." I say, doing air quotes in the dark, knowing that Marcus could easily see.
Marcus simply laughs, "Heh heh, well, whatever. Least I get bragging rights. Finally get to tell the guys that I dated the Fiery Dragon." He says with a wink. I could tell by the way only one of his glowing eyes shut for a moment. I knew that this, "Fiery Dragon," was me, since I was the only one in the Damaged home a dragon-like mutation line.
I put my hand to the bridge of my nose, "Oh my God, let me get this straight. You and your buddies have a competition as to who can date me first? Why not like... Literally anyone else?" I groan, never particularly a fan of other people liking me, especially multiple people.
I hear Marcus sigh, "Well, cause you're hot dude. May not be breathing fire yet, but I gotta say, you're pretty smoking." He flirts, acting as if I hadn't heard the exact same thing from other people, all of whom I'd happily slapped and turned down. "I get that we're roomies, but hey, nice to know someone's into you right?" He adds, clearly hoping I wasn't annoyed by his flirting.
I was. "Dude, can you like, not? Go try the other Mut girls. Literally ANYONE else, I don't care. I don't plan on hooking up with anyone any time soon, so you can buzz off with your pick up lines." I growl, being a bit more forceful with my delivery than I meant to be.
Marcus hesitates, "Whatever dude. I'm not askin' you to fall in love with me. Just a date." He says slowly, the disappointment in his voice obvious. "Just take the hoodie, and we'll talk tomorrow." He says with a loud yawn, "I'm tired." He adds, rubbing his eyes.
I knew he was lying, he was never tired. "Fine. Whatever then. I'll put it on tomorrow." I say, putting the green hoodie on top of the dresser for tomorrow. I look back to see the green circles in the dark were gone, Marcus apparently having gone to sleep. I rub my temples as I trudge back to bed, falling forwards and rolling onto my back. I don't bother getting undressed, knowing Marcus was just pretending to sleep.
I was used to it, sleeping in my clothes. I didn't enjoy it, but it made me feel safer. I eventually pull the blankets over myself and turn to my side, closing my eyes and trying to go back to sleep.
I don't have any dreams until I wake up, sleep coming quickly after I shut my eyes. I wake to the sound of loud beeping, the digital alarm clock making an obnoxious bleep in order to wake up whoever was in the room. And anyone nearby for that matter, as I could hear the alarm clocks of almost every other room on the floor.
Marcus was the first one up, springing out of bed in his boxers to slap the top of the plastic box. I, on the other hand, was less of a morning person. Still laying in bed by the time Marcus was fully dressed in his jeans and white jacket. "C'mon Kass, time to get up. Don't forget the hoodie." He says, suddenly tossing the green hoodie at my face, which covers my head for a moment before I sit up with narrowed eyes.
I don't say a word, groggily getting out of bed and yawning loudly, a warm feeling in the back of my throat. I stand up, Marcus having already left the room, and trudge to the dresser. I undress myself, taking a moment to examine myself for small mutations before pulling Marcus's hoodie over my shoulders and grabbing a torn up pair of jeans from my own drawer.
As I pull up my jeans, I hear a scream, causing me to trip over myself and end up on my rear. I look towards the door and hear more screams, followed by a loud bang. The screams stop and are followed by complete silence. That could only mean one thing. I sigh softly to myself and slowly stand back up, pulling my jeans back up before heading towards the door. I open the creaky door and peek outside towards the dining room, seeing that everyone had already been taken outside. I see Marcus laying on his back, one of his gentle green eyes staring at me, while the other dripped crimson onto the floor. Next to him was one of the workers that served us our breakfast, her throat torn to shreds by Marcus's sharp claws.
Then there was the guard that had ended it, the same one who'd been manning the gate just last night. He was accompanied by a Clean Gene scientist, the company logo printed in bright blue lettering on his white lab coat. They were obviously talking about something, the guard seeming shaken as he held his company issued sidearm against his thigh. I shake my head and pull my head back into my room, deciding I'd rather stay inside rather than being ushered outside with the rest of the Muts. I wasn't hungry anyways.
I walk over to me and Marcus's previously shared dresser, opening a couple of his drawers and slowly pulling out a few pairs of his clothes, seeing if I liked any of them. It didn't bother me, taking from the dead that is. They weren't his anymore, and whatever I didn't take would be burned to make space anyways. May as well make sure the clothes didn't go to waste.
Back when I was first transferred to this particular Damaged home, the nearly monthly death of one of my housemates was horrifying. The thought that this building was meant for the more dangerous of mutation lines, including those suffering from mental mutations, with me caught right in the middle, it made me want to hide away from the world. Of course, I was much younger back then and the mere concept of death was alien to me.
Nowadays though, it wasn't exactly unusual. We were considered dangerous. It only made sense that some of us would actually turn out to be that way. I could hear more people coming into the building, probably to clear away the corpses so everyone could get back to their breakfast. There wouldn't be any police of course, only CGE employees who were assigned clean up duty.
I continue to go through Marcus's old stuff, finding a few rolls of cash that were tucked away in a few of his pockets. I take them as well of course, it would be stupid of me not to. I rummage through his clothes one last time to see if I missed anything, but quickly just shut the drawer, thinking that I'd gone through his belongings for long enough.
I glance around, wondering what to do. I couldn't exactly leave my room, else I'd be herded outside like all the other Muts. Instead, I hop onto my bed, laying down and laying my tail next to me, staring at the ceiling for a moment. I let out a sigh and close my eyes, deciding to take a nap until someone woke me up.
It wasn't long until I heard the door creak open and someone walk in. I sit up, not actually able to fall asleep, seeing another CGE employee, this one with an intimidating looking gas mask covering his face, standing in the doorway. "The situation has been dealt with. You can come out to eat now." She says simply, turning around and shutting the door behind her.
I stand up, having spent more than enough time in bed today, and walk to the door, happy to finally leave my room. I glance at the other Muts that were already sitting in the dining room, eating their bowls of what looked like oatmeal. I sit at the one long table, placed between two Muts that seemed shaken by the morning excitement. My spot was empty, no bowl or spoon for me to eat with. After a few minutes, a plate of meat was placed in front of me. It was pretty pink, and looked like some kind of beef, but whenever I put it in my mouth it reminded me of chicken. It wasn't great, but I much preferred it to the grey meal that everyone else had.
I didn't understand why I was given special food every meal, but it had been that way since I was transferred here. They always said it was because of my mutation line, that my needs were different, but I wasn't so sure. Not that I planned on complaining, the meat wasn't half bad. I decided long ago not to question it.
I pick the slab of flesh and put it to my mouth, swallowing the rare steak without bothering to chew. It was soft and fatty, but absolutely refused to be torn apart. I let out a sigh and stand up, pushing in my chair before walking away. I didn't have classes that day, but unfortunately I had something worse. I had to go have an interview with someone from CGE.
It was a weekly occurrence. I'd sit in a room and be asked questions. Immediately following that, I'd be searched from top to bottom for anything they deemed unusual. Well, unusual for my mutation line at least. It always made me uncomfortable, the scientists poking and prodding at my skin, stabbing me with needles, and pulling at my hair weren't very considerate of how I was feeling. At least they had the decency to assign female scientists to give me my examination.
But the interview was in an hour, I had some time to burn. I planned on using the free time taking care of myself. I couldn't remember the last time I'd brushed my hair. I walk into my room to see three people in CGE uniforms unloading Marcus's old things, all of them ignoring me as I went into the bathroom connected to my previously shared room. I shut the door behind me, looking at the cloudy and chipped mirror for a moment before letting out a sigh. "You look like shit." I grumble to myself, my frizzy black hair having countless tangles, tiny specks of old blood and dirt on my face. "When was the last time I took a shower?" I ask myself, deciding not to think too hard about it.
I pick up a grey plastic hairbrush from one of the cabinets underneath the stained ceramic sink, and start to run it through my hair, wincing each time the bristles would hit an extra tangled strand. But, soon enough, I had somewhat straightened my hair out, the small curls running down my shoulders. I glance at my face, quickly turning the faucet on and splashing some water on my face, letting out a sharp breath as I felt how cold the water felt against my face. After some gentle scrubbing and more water, the dirt that was peppering my face before was mostly gone.
I'd still need a shower of course, but I wouldn't look like garbage for my interview. Not that I cared what any of them thought of me. I place the brush on the edge of the sink and go back into my bedroom, the three CGE employees were still gathering Marcus's belongings, but they didn't seem to want to bother me.
I lay down on my bed yet again, glancing at the clock to see that only a few minutes had gone by. "Ugh... May as well take a nap..." I grumble to myself, pulling out my cracked phone and setting an alarm ten minutes before my interview. I glance at the CGE employees still in the room, noticing that they seemed to be wrapping up. "Whatever. They'll be gone soon..." I murmur as I close my eyes, laying my head on my pillow and rolling to my side.
Once again, my sleep was short lived, my phone buzzing loudly as it tried to get me to wake up. I groan loudly to myself, wishing for just a little bit more sleep. I slowly open my eyes and glance around, seeing no one else in my room. I roll over and sit up, pulling my phone out of my pocket and accidentally cutting my finger on the cracked screen as I shut off my alarm. The cut didn't particularly hurt, and the wound healed in seconds, but I was annoyed by the crimson smudge that was now on my screen.
I groan in annoyance and drop my phone onto my bed, sitting up and getting out of bed. It was time for me to leave. I walk to the door and leave my room, ignoring the red stain on my finger. The room was just down the hall, so after opening the door, I sit down at the table placed in the middle of the room. No one else was there yet, but that wasn't surprising. I'd just have to wait.