Before you read this, I want you to know that no matter how far-fetched and ridiculous what you read may be, all the events in this story actually happened. This story is the truth, but very few people will want you to read it. If you read it, you'll be a part of our fight, and you'll be in danger. Like, end of the world danger. You could die for reading this. If you don't want to deal with that, move your hand over a little bit to the corner, click that little x and walk away. Now. If you can, buckle up.
My name is Archie. No last name, just Archie. I was born and raised in this place called the Pit. At least, that's what Aria and I called it. The Pit was this little hole underground, from what we could tell. We never saw sunlight. We never felt the wind. It was always damp, dark and cold, so we assumed we were below sea level.
We aren't normal either. Me and my friends, we're a bit special. When we were still babies we were all injected with some sort of serum. Don't ask me what was in it, because I didn't know then, and still don't. All I know is that it changed us. Made us more than what humans were supposed to be. We sort of shattered the pecking order. More on that later though.
There are seven of us here. Kids, I mean. Me, Aria, Lear, Echo, Mosaic, and Lily. I know, there are a few weird names, but we all got to pick our own. There were no birth certificates for us, so records that we ever existed. So one day, when the seven of us were sitting around in a circle, we came up with our names.
"So, what should we call ourselves? I mean, it's not like I don't love the jack offs here calling us One, Two, Three, That One, You, but I feel like we should actually have names, you know?" Aria had said, back when she was just called Three. She was the third one of us happy kids to show up here at the Pit. "I like the name Aria. I read about a character in a book named Aria once. Can't remember which book though, I've read way too many, cuz there's nothing else to DO down here! It also means lioness, which is cool enough in itself. So yeah, Aria. Next?"
Aria and I are the same age, fifteen. We look pretty similar too. We both have brown hair, though it's not well kept. We don't often have access to a shower. Our eyes are the same shade of green, almost a forest green. There was a line of freckles splattered across her nose, almost like someone went at her with a light brown paint brush. She also had a small mole at the left side of her mouth that moved with her when she smiled. She was skinny too, but then again, so were the rest of us.
"Lily. It's pretty," spoke up a quiet voice from the other side of me. Lily, who was named Six at the time sat there, twiddling a piece of string between two tiny, pale fingers. Her long, stringy silver hair was sprawled out all over the ground behind her, stretching out and weaving around so much it looked like a spider web. Lily was the third youngest of us at thirteen, but she spoke the least. She didn't like to be the centre of attention.
"Just like you!" Echo, Five, shouted and threw his arms around her. Lily squeaked, slapping his arms lightly, but she was giggling under her breath. Echo had dark, caramel skin, buzz cut black hair and deep brown eyes. He's only ten, but he can handle a lot more than what the scientists here throw at him. I think he even bit off one of their thumbs once. I'm seriously proud of this kid, he is the definition of trooper. And he's got a killer smile.
"What should my name be?" He wondered aloud, tapping his chin over and over again as he thought. Lily struggled under his arm, trying to pull herself out of the headlock he had put her in. Then he snapped his fingers and raised his arms in success, almost knocking Lily flat on her back, "Aha! Got it! Captain Awesome!"
"Dude, take this seriously!" Aria scolded him, giving his forehead a nice hard flick.
"Ow! Okay, okay. Umm.. Oh, Echo! They use that a lot in the army right?" He grinned. Echo had this dream of one day, and I had no idea why, joining the army. He wanted to be on the front line, fighting for this great nation of ours. At this point though, we had no idea what that nation even was. All we had was the Pit.
"I want to be named Lear, after the Shakespeare character. He was a great king, though he was mad, but even so. I like it." Lear said. He was sitting across from me, staring at his blistered and bruised feet. Lear was eleven, but he didn't act like it. He acted like he was a full blown adult, not that I blamed him. You had to grow up pretty fast to survive down here. It's why Lily had so much trouble. She didn't have the mental strength for it. Sometimes I don't think I did either.
"I wanna be Twig!" Mosaic yelled, and the name fit him. Some sort of experiment had given him stringy green hair and dark brown, almost black, eyes. He was practically a tooth pick. His pale skin seemed like it was stretched over his bones, barely managing to keep from snapping. He didn't have nearly as much muscle mass as he should have, considering he was fourteen. In fact, he looked almost ethereal, like he would shatter into a million pieces if someone even looked at him wrong. "It fits me, right?"
"I think Mosaic would work better for you. It sounds much more majestic. Twig feels like you're not even trying," Aria teased. Mosaic blinked, face contorting slightly as he thought about it. It really wasn't that hard to figure out which one he liked better.
"Okay, yeah, Mosaic sounds cool! I'm definitely in!" He shouted, grinning widely.
I know a lot of people must be wondering.. How the hell could we all be acting so cheerful? You guys have never seen the outside world, you should be mad! Throwing chairs, making nukes, something along those lines. Well, you have to remember something. We didn't know what it was we were missing. All we knew is that we were here in the Pit and we weren't going anywhere.
"What about you, One? What do you want your name to be?" Aria asked, nudging my shoulder slightly. I thought for a moment, wondering what name would suit me best. I mean, it wasn't the easiest thing to choose. I didn't have anything defining about myself, like the others. I was just me.
"How about Achilles? You're like, an awesome hunter," Echo said.
"Achilles wasn't a hunter, idiot, he was a hero. He fought in the Trojan War, was the main character of Homer's Iliad, and not to mention he had the whole bum heel thing. Not the greatest guy to be named after, don't you think?" Lear countered, rolling his eyes at him. Lear was a bit of a stickler for the facts. You couldn't get something wrong around him or he would rip your head off. But the name Achilles did sound really cool. Then it hit me. A more modern version of it, at least.
"Archie."I signed to Aria, after tapping her shoulder. Even before I finished, I felt like it was my name. Like it was perfect for me, made for me. It had always been mine. Practically molded for me. Or I it. Either way, it was my name. She nodded, announcing it to the rest of the group, who all gave their approval.
Oh right, I forgot to mention that part didn't I?
I'm mute. It was because of some experiment the scientists here tried to pull on me. It was to give me the ability to use sonar waves or something and, needlessly to say, it went wrong. Now I had no vocal cords. Well, I had them, they just didn't work.
We never had any reason to leave. We didn't know what was on the outside, we didn't want to know. We were all perfectly content in there, even though we were going through the sort of experiments that took my voice from me. It was better than thinking about the alternative of dying on the outside. At least in here we died somewhere that we knew, that was our own screwed up home.
That was, until I found the file. And then everything changed.