|I am Human sort of
Author: Ash Kenner PM
Sam, Nick, Daniel, Shika, Levi, and Dakota are special. They can morph into any creature with the power of their mind. But they are being hunted by people who want to use them. Can they succeed in doing the one thing they want most? To survive...?Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Fantasy - Words: 4,135 - Reviews: 1 - Follows: 1 - Published: 02-19-11 - id: 2892663
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
If you can't handle the truth, then put this book down now. Careful not to rip a page on your way out, thank you very much. But seriously, this is a full account of what has happened to me. And I figured you may (or may not) want to know it. I certainly know I want you to hear it.
In this book I hope to tell you just what horrible things people are capable of. Well more specifically, capable of doing to me.
Now of course, there are some things I suppose I should warn you about, before you go getting ahead of yourself and flip the page. And that is this:
I'm not human.
Okay, I suppose that might not seem to bode well to you, but that's not completely what I meant. Yes, I'm not human. I'm still human, just not fully. Is this making any sense to you? No? Didn't think so.
Let's make it simpler then. I can morph into other... let's say creatures, for want of a better word.
Ever read the book Animorphs? This is different. No aliens telling me to save the world with my oh-so-special powers (Although I haven't entirely ruled out the possibility that they will), no having to touch the 'animal' I want to morph into. And no, thank God, time limits.
The only thing I need is
1. Iron willpower
So besides that, I'm a perfectly normal teenage girl, with perfectly normal teenage emotions. You know, fear, anger, annoyance, sadness, paranoia, claustrophobia, and love.
So I suppose you could say that is what differentiates me, from my 'enemies'. I feel for the human race. I feel for my race. Even though the people who want to kill me are more human than I am. For the most part, that is.
But I'm not alone, thankfully. I don't have a biological family, that I know of, but I do have a family. They love me to death, and I love them back a million-fold. Our merry little band of misfits is just trying to do one thing. The one thing we've been trying to do ever since we were born. Err, created? We hadn't quite gotten that one down yet... Anyways, the one thing we've been trying to do ever since we were born... What might that be?
Oh yes, I know. How unoriginal and totally blasé. But true. If you don't understand, that's totally normal. If you do understand, there's a huge chance you are one of our enemies, so do me a huge favor and drop dead?
The only way, I suppose, to make you understand this a little more fully is to take you back. Back to when it all started. And how this huge mess came to be.
Location: ? (A forest somewhere)
Date: Someday in June, 2007
Fear. Fear and hunger. Intense hunger. I couldn't breathe as I stumbled through the dense woods, dizzy with a whopping combination of exhaustion, hunger, pain, and fear from being alone.
Despite my overwhelming fatigue, I continued tromping through the forest, though barely making a noise all the while. After all, my survival may very well depend on it.
A couple of times I stopped, whirled around, and stood there for a good while. After I was entirely certain that nobody was following me, or even in the area for that matter, I continued my silent meandering.
Part of me was hoping I would find someone, anyone, that could help me. The other part, the rational side by the way, was screaming to me that it wouldn't matter. They wouldn't help me once they knew what I needed.
Or, for that matter, once they saw me. Now I have to say, I've never met anyone who's particularly happy to welcome a skinny, little, dirty ten year old who's been trudging through God knows what gunk out in these desolate woods.
And the only thoughts that struck me at the moment (keep in mind I was ten years old) were these:
1. Oh God I'm gonna die
2. This can't be America, nowhere in America is this void of life
3. Where were my people
After wallowing in these depressing thoughts (mostly the first one) for a long time, I decided I was just getting myself more lost and did the thing most natural to a starving, lost, tired child.
I curled up into a ball at the base of a giant tree, and slept.
"Here!" I became aware of a voice shouting over me. "She's over here!" It was a vaguely familiar voice, but even though I was now awake, I didn't open my eyes. Partly because I was tired. Mostly because I heard someone else approaching. A very large someone else. Oh what a devious little child I was.
I felt strong, gentle hands wrap around me, and I was lifted into the air. Whoever it was, he brought me close to his chest and held me tight. But it was a gentle, caring tight. I liked the feeling, and soon fell back into a deep sleep. Not a care in the world.
I slept dreamlessly, and awoke lying on a couch. Nobody seemed to notice I was awake, because they were all otherwise occupied. I felt my heart leap as I recognized each and every one of the children in the room. Sitting at the table to my right were Daniel, Levi, Dakota, Shika, and Nick.
Nick and Daniel, the two other eldest kids, were sitting together, talking quietly. Levi and Dakota were playing some sort of game with a board and little plastic pieces, and Shika was talking with a man I'd never seen before in my life.
I slid off the sofa as silently as possible and crouched on the floor, concentrating as hard as I could. It wasn't an unpleasant feeling, morphing. It wasn't exactly a walk in the park, as it required incredible amounts of concentration and pure imaginative will-power, but it was sort of a tingling sensation going down my spine.
One thing I knew how to change into with relative ease (it comes with lots of practice) was a cat. A baby ocelot actually. (They are the most adorable and more importantly, can look a lot like a house cat) The smaller it was, the easier the transformation took place. I relaxed, and let the changes occur without me fighting them.
Soon I was no longer the small dirty child I was so used to being. Now I was an even smaller, even dirtier looking ocelot kitten. Hoping the strange man wouldn't find it odd a cat had 'found' it's way in his (I'd assumed it was his, he was the only adult around) house, I headed towards the table.
I walked lazily, at least what I hoped looked like it was lazily, around the side of the sofa, to where my family was more or less surrounding a small table. My family, and an outsider.
Even as children, we didn't... don't take kindly to outsiders. The man at the table didn't even see me. Or, maybe he did, I just know he didn't say anything. I went under the table, and stopped at Nick's feet. I was about to lick his feet, when I heard what they were talking about.
"Sam's been asleep for a long time." I heard Danny whisper in a soft, but harsh tone. Didn't think ten year olds could sound harsh? Psh.
"Give her time." Nick said quietly, a different kind of quiet than Danny though. An almost stoic quiet. Stoic? A child? Yeah, now I'm just being funny.
There was silence between the two of them for a couple of seconds, and Nick shifted in his seat. After about half a minute, I heard Danny speak again. "What do you think about what Mr. Incredible over there said? His offer, I mean." Nick didn't even have to think about his response.
"It's Sam's decision, she's the leader." He replied in a hushed tone, and there was silence again, the subject had apparently been dropped. It made me swell with pride to realize that Nick had such faith in me, and we were only children. It made me actually stop and think for a moment how trusting in me he would be when we were older.
But there wasn't time for such thoughts. I was getting impatient, and I had apparently heard all there was to hear right now, so I figured the best way to get the answers to the million questions bubbling in my head was to ask them directly.
Plan One: Covertly Assess, check. Plan Two: Annoyingly Pester Until Every Question is Answered, underway.
I nipped at Nick's ankles, and he didn't make a noise, didn't even jump. But he bent down like he had dropped something and glanced under the table to find... me. He grinned like the child he was, and held out his hands. I climbed into them, and he lifted me up and onto the table.
There were a couple of happy, wide eyed looks from my fellow companions, and it looked like Dakota was about to shout out a mispronounced, baby version of my name energetically, but a double warning-glance from Nick and Danny stopped her. Nothing, however, can stop a two year old from giggling excitedly.
Levi, four at the time, just looked at me and gave me a sense he was thinking 'So what.' Shika, however, actually stopped talking (oh my god) to the strange man, and glanced at me. She smiled her warm, kind smile.
Danny, after he was done half-glaring at Dakota, glanced from me to Nick, then decided to focus on 'Mr. Incredible', or so he called him. I had yet to find out why.
But finally, after he realized Shika was actually no longer speaking, Mr. Incredible himself looked up. Apparently he hadn't expected to find a kitten sitting on his table, as a look of surprised confusement swept across his face.
He smiled at me, and beckoned with his hand. I just sat there with a look on my face that clearly said, 'Bite me'. Mr. Incredible looked surprised, no, shocked for a second. Then recognition seemed to dawn on his face as he glanced over to where I had lain earlier.
I cautiously walked over to him, and sat right in front of him.
"Hello Sam." He said, then thought for a second, and asked, "I can call you Sam, right? I mean, it's not short for something? Like Samantha or Sammy or something?" Mr. Incredible asked, almost ranting.
I raised a furry eyebrow and almost smiled. Almost.
"No, it's not short for anything. Not Samantha, or Sammy, or Something." I paused, then added, "And you aren't calling me anything until I know what to call you."
Apparently he hadn't expected me to actually talk in animal form, 'cause there was an odd look on his face. I couldn't quite tell what it was. Something like a mixture of surprise and strangled happiness.
But he didn't say anything about me talking. He just smiled once more and said, "Dr. Josh Raymond. Just call me Dr. Raymond." all the while smiling broadly. If I had a hand, he probably would've shook it enthusiastically. But I was handless, and he looked like a pawful.
That was a joke. Hahaha, it was funny. Right? Right...
I smiled at him, but I knew that in little kitty form, it looked dang creepy. So I smiled my creepy, furry smile and said, "Well, Josh," emphasizing his first name, instead of calling him the formal way he had requested, "now that we're all friends," I almost laughed at that, "let's stop playing dumb, eh?"
Everyone was silent for a second, and I knew my... what should I call them? Pack? Flock? Family? Family... I like that one.
I knew my family was sitting right behind me, staring attentively, ready to scram at a moment's notice.
How would we escape? I thought. It wasn't a 'how could we possibly escape', it was a 'if things get hairy, what would be the best thing to turn into?' kind of thought. I was thinking hawks, easiest to just fly away... or we could turn into something more... oh, I don't know, intimidating? Scare the creep away once and for all?
While I was going through my silent musings, I realized Josh, or Dr. Raymond, was glancing over my family. I really didn't like the look on his face. It was a thinking face. An evaluating face. He was trying to understand us.
Once Dr. Raymond realized I was staring at him coldly, he returned his attention to me. "What do you mean?" He asked. It took me a second to realize he was responding to my earlier comment and I replied with a roll of my eyes.
Again, on a kitten, it's a bit disconcerting.
"What do you want from us?" I asked, not at all in a generous way. What can I say, I wasn't exactly in a generous mood anyways. After all, I was in the form of a baby wild cat. If necessary, I could bite. Probably lock my jaw. I didn't like this guy.
And if completely necessary, I could morph into a full grown ocelot, though it would put a bit more of a strain on my body. Nothing I haven't done before, sadly.
Josh paused, then decided that the truth was the best way to go. Good choice Doctor.
"I want to help you." He began. How did I know he was just beginning? Well, it was never that simple. "However..." I knew it, I thought. What does he want? "I want to study you as well.
I groaned. Though, I suppose it sounded more like a growl. Then I realized that I could probably used that to my advantage. However, before I did anything, a thought struck me.
"You... aren't a real doctor, are you?" I asked, staring at him through my adorable kitten eyes. He didn't move a muscle. "You're a scientist." I could practically hear my family stiffen behind me. Scientists were bad news.
Bad, bad news.
He didn't answer, but he didn't have to. The look on his face was all I needed to confirm my suspicions. I realized I really, really didn't like this guy. So, even though it wasn't completely necessary, I started to change.
I grew, faster and faster. In a mere few seconds, I was no longer the adorable little kitten. Now I was a full grown four and a half foot long ocelot. Granted it wasn't as large as say, a tiger... but it did the job.
Weighing merely twice the size of a regular house cat, I didn't collapse the long but small table I was sitting at. But I was angry. And any angry wild cat you don't want to mess with.
Josh sat glued to his seat, not moving a muscle. I could tell from the clattering of chairs and the smell of felines behind me that my family had followed my lead.
"Nobody uses us." I growled, and gave him my best angry snarl.
I leapt off the table and out the nearest door. Granted it was closed, but that didn't really stop me. I was relieved to find we were still in the forest we were found in, and that Josh Raymond hadn't taken us to somewhere more populated.
Gotta say, people kind of freak out if a band of wild big cats came out of a little house at the end of their street. Yeah, and I'm not one that's all for animal catchers.
We all raced out of there as fast as we could, and I didn't stop until I was sure we were too far away for the Doctor to find us. We grouped together in a clearing and I looked over my family.
Levi and Dakota were both young Tiger cubs, however Dakota was a White Tiger. Shika was a young Cougar, or mountain lion if you prefer the term. Daniel was a full grown Cheetah, and Nick was an adult Black Jaguar. Or was he a Panther? Couldn't tell. But I knew the strain of being in a larger form must be for them.
Although they weren't all that large, about 4 1/2 to 5 or so feet long, It was still quite the strain. Not on the body, per say (although there definitely strain there as well), but the mind. The larger the creature, the more concentration necessary.
I leapt over the three smaller felines, and once I landed, I was good old Sam again. Dramatic and totally unnecessary, I know, but I couldn't resist. They all morphed into human form... no, they morphed back to normal, and I noticed Nick roll his eyes.
Once we were all furless, I smiled. But soon my smile faded, and I frowned. It wasn't a disappointed or sad sort of frown, just a confused one. "What happened?" I asked, looking around to each of them in turn. Levi shrugged, and Dakota was playing with a beetle that she had evidently found. Two year olds make the best listeners.
Shika gave me an equally confused, but somehow sympathetic look. Amazing how people younger than you can feel pity for not knowing what happened, when they are equally confused and unaware. I didn't dwell on it for too long. She's only seven.
Daniel looked deep in thought, but when he glanced up at me he had come to the exact same conclusion as me. "It doesn't make sense." He said, staring at Nick and me in turn.
Nick, being the social and talkative person he was, nodded. I raised an eyebrow and rolled my eyes. "Yeah, that I gathered." I sat down on a large rock/boulder next to me and picked up a stick on the ground. I twiddled with it for a moment, then stopped and looked at my family.
"We were all together..." I began twirling the twig, "And then I... blacked out?" Looking up I noticed that they were all nodding, even Dakota. It seemed they had all experienced the same thing. "Then when I woke up, I was surrounded by adults. Men in like... black suits." More nodding.
"I got away from them," I said thoughtfully, almost to myself, "And found myself running through this forest." I motioned around me. There were five thoughtful, attentive faces staring at me. The beetle in Dakota's hands had escaped, and was scurrying away from her.
Nick and Daniel sat down on rocks on either side of me, and all of them settled down. They could sense this might get long. Shika was picking at twigs and leaves that had accumulated in her hair, but she was still giving her attention to me.
"We were all separated, and I panicked. I kept running through this forest in hopes of finding one of you, but none of you were there." I paused, and snapped the stick in half and threw it angrily against one of the trees across from me.
It whizzed right over Levi's head, and he looked up at me, annoyed. Annoyed, but concerned. I simply continued.
"I kept thinking some of those weird men were following me, but they never were, none of them seemed to even bother about it. Once I was gone, I was gone. They didn't even seem to care." No one said anything.
"Eventually, I just collapsed against a tree until you lot and 'Mr. Incredible'," I quoted Daniel and Nick, and they grinned, "found me. What happened afterwards you all already know." I was sort of getting tired of all the nodding, and was silently begging for someone to say something.
The one person I didn't expect any insight from, spoke. "Byut Sam..." Dakota said in a high pitched, sort of slurred manner. "Jawsh sayd he cuwd hewp us. He sayd he cuwd keep us sayfe!" She said enthusiastically, although I could barely understand her toddler speak.
I held back a sigh. "Honey," I said to her, although I was only ten years old myself, "He was trying to use us. He just wanted to study us. Like those people who had you when you were a baby." Technically she was still a baby, but the look on her face told me she knew what I meant and that's all that mattered.
Each of us had been imprisoned by what seems like the same people. When we were new-born children, these people who were obviously not related to us in any way had held us captive.
Not a captive for ransom. 'Cause that implies that they intended to let us go.
No, we all escaped from our captors, with the exception of Levi and Dakota, whom we rescued. Daniel, Nick, Shika and I had all met on the outside a year ago and knew instantly the moment we saw each other that we were the same. I can't explain it and I won't even try, but it was just a feeling we had when we met.
Like everything was perfect.
When we found out there were more like us in that place we had escaped from, even though Shika had only been 6, she volunteered to help us get them out. And we did. And we kicked butt.
So we had been together ever since, going in and out of hiding. Traveling all up and down the United States. We all took care of Dakota, who was only one, and Levi, who was three. When their birthday's came around (we all gave ourselves birthdays, we had no idea when we were actually born), we stole a giant cake from a baker's shop and had a party all to ourselves.
Life was good. We were there for each other to lean on. No adults to take us away from each other and test us anymore. All they wanted to do was see what made us tick, and all we wanted to do was stay ticking.
So we promised each other. We promised we would always be there for each other. And we promised we'd never let any adults get in the way of that. That was the way it was going to stay.
Then a thought struck me. "Hey." I said, addressing all of my family. They all looked up, except Nick, who was staring at the ground. But from the way he tensed when I spoke, I knew he was paying attention.
"Let's find a house. A real house, with bedrooms and a kitchen and a backyard. No adults. And live there, all on our own. Somewhere secluded. Away from everyone else. Somewhere like this." I gestured all around me, to the emptiness. But then I added, "But not here.
"Somewhere far away where nobody will ever find us, and we can live. Just... live." I finished, and realized I had ended up staring straight at Nick. I forced myself to look away and returned my attention to the rest of my family. Nobody had said anything, and I was starting to feel stupid for even bringing it up when a little voice said,
"Yeah!" It was Levi. Dakota was sitting next to him, and she was smiling broadly. A great big toothy smile. Shika started jumping up and down and going on about how perfect that would be, and how she could do her hair every morning and take a real shower and more stuff I didn't hear.
Daniel grinned and looked up at me, almost mischievously. "Heck yeah, man!" He shouted, high-fiving Levi. Nick stared at me, eyebrow raised. Finally he broke out with a smile and quietly said,
"That'd be nice."
I sighed in relief. Then let's do this. I thought, as I shrunk. I grew feathers all over and in a few seconds (tops) I was a beautiful Osprey.
"Let's fly." I said, taking off as my family followed after me. We could do this. We could... would, survive.