Posted By: Kaiyo no Hime<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 28 June 2009, 9:20 am
Her world was not fully whole, taken apart and pieced back together again by the mad scientists the government had let run wild over her childhood. Over all of their childhoods; Spartan Class of 2537. Stolen in the night, broken down, torn apart, tortured, and all that remained of their shattered minds put back together again in beautiful, strong, filthy bodies.
They were family, they were siblings, they were the lone survivors. And they were not whole.
She no longer remembered her real family, she had shoved that awful knowledge away on the seventh night of her training, refusing to let the tears stream down her face one more night. There was no use thinking of the little cat that like to lick her face, longing for the homemade strawberry jam her mother made, or of late evenings spent racing around with friends as parents called them home for supper. Even the faint memory of the little girl in the red cloak, screaming through the woods as she ran from the ravenous wolf was tossed aside.
That girl was dead now. She was not strong, she was not intelligent, she was gone. She tripped over the roots and the wolf came and ate her up, and there would never be a hunter to come along and save her.
Just her blood darkening the forest floor as the wretched beast slunk away again, to lie in wait for another foolish child.
And so that hideous creature had eaten her and all the other children, and they became the wolves to survive the training. To become better, and darker, and faster than all of the shadows that the scientists used to tear away at them.
And most of them, most of them turned around and stared the wolf in the eye; and the wolf slunk away, cowed and defeated.
Those that blinked were devoured whole, and had the bodies twisted and tortured by the augmentation. They screamed in agony until their bones broke, shattered, and filled blood streams with fire and ice. The beast laughed at those ones, those of us who could endure no more. He loved us more than the others, and haunts our minds.
"Well, I don't know, run a diagnostic or something!"
"That won't be necessary," I yawned, would have yawned if I still had a body to yawn with, "All of my functions are within normal parameters."
All of them but my sanity. Not that any of the cognitive impression AI's taken from a Spartan-II washout were sane to begin with.
"Then care to explain why every screen on the ship looks like that," the captain growled, pointing toward the viewing monitor.
Black shadows collapsed inward on themselves, rising and falling like a heaving sea as the small red cloak was dashed upon the dark rocks, tortured by the nightmare waves.
I had been dreaming.
But I couldn't tell them that. It was far too soon for me to be showing signs of rampancy. I had not seen nearly half, learned half, of what I wanted to know yet. I didn't want to get shut down before I considered myself complete.
"Data error, the bug will be fixed momentarily," I lied.
Stupid human fools. They try to play the hunter for those who are already dead.
The Captain look wary. There had been too many bugs lately, too many odd quirks on the ship. A light forgetting to come on, a door not opening fully, an airlock refusing to vent. He knew, he knew as I knew. But we were too far out into the desolate black of space for him to do anything about.
There was nothing that he could do about it, even if he wanted to.
He was under strict orders of no contact with Earth. With anyone. Even Ahab himself would find the ship sorrowful and desolate, the White Whale nowhere in sight, only coffins floating in the seas around us.
"Make a note of it, Anna," he sighed, rubbing at his balding head as he straightened up his cap, "The tech geeks back home will want to know about it."
"Of course, Captain," I reply.
There is no offer to contact home now.
We will all die before we ever hear from that blue world again.
I just wish I had been able to know the whole universe before we ended. I just wanted to fill those gaping wounds where the wolf had torn into my soul and spat it back out again.
I just wanted to go to my grandmother's house.