Hey people! I am AnotherFacelessAuthor. I've previously written work on Fanfiction and thought I'd post here.
See, like probably a lot of people here, I DREAM of being an author. It's is my life dream. I can have 7 different story ideas going at once. Usually I'll start one and then just kinda stop writing, but I never forget an idea. I loved how reviews and such on my Fanfiction helped me actually FINISH a chapter. I mean, I did a story over 100 pages (on Gdocs) and like 60 chapters (I wrote the story for speed rather than quality so not all the chapters were long). This story I plan to write for quality rather than speed. So, yeah.
Please review. If you wanna flame, go ahead, but I don't see the point. If you don't like it, just exit out. Don't spread hate guys. Not cool.
But I can't grow as an author without suggestions. Reviews make my heart sing. :) Seriously.
The Theory Behind the Phoenix
Unlike the average person, I had, what I called later in life, a second birth. I remember that second birth vividly, but wished desperately that I didn't. It was unpleasant, and what followed was even more so.
I was reborn into the world with full knowledge, and the age which should be accompanied by experience. My mind told me I was eighteen, but I had no recollection to back this thought up. No memory of birthdays celebrated or years experienced.
I searched in the depths of my mind, looking for anything salvageable, a face or a name, but find none. Not even my own.
My mind was blank, complete and utterly.
At least, blank of anything that would mark my life as unique. I was satisfied that I found common knowledge still within me. Basic motor functions seemed operational with minor tests. I went through basic math in my head, listed the different states, tested myself on basic education. I was relieved to find that I seemed to have had a halfway decent, if not basic, education. Due to the minimalism of it, I inferred that perhaps I had not had a full High School education.
High School, another thing I knew of, but did not remember.
Content I'd discovered all I could with basic mental searches and body tests while laying down, as I discovered I was, I prepare myself to open my eyes.
My eyes were not open a fraction before light seared them. Hissing, I squeezed them back shut. Taking a deep breath I forced my eyes to open once more. The pain blinded me and scolded me, but I forced my eyes to remain wide.
Having done so, and having allowed my eyes time to adjust, I could make out my surroundings. My surroundings, as it appeared, were not special, unique, or very interesting in the slightest, exempting the fact that I had no idea how I'd gotten there.
Everything was gray.
Grey walls. Grey floor. A grey desk with a grey chair. Grey armoire. Even a grey toilet in a corner. I looked down and saw I was wearing a fitted grey shirt with tight and flexible grey pants. Color caught me on my shoulder. I touched it gingerly, stricken by it's brilliant defiance against the grey ocean around me.
The color was a dark red, covering my head in a state of nonconformity. It was my hair and it was bleeding from my scalp. I don't remember dying my hair, but somehow the color didn't seem natural. Or at least, it seemed like it shouldn't be. What did I know?
Cautiously I sat up. With an ease I didn't expect, I stood. I noticed my feet were cloaked by white shoes and standing on a grey floor.
I turned back to where I had lied. It had been a bed that was, predictably, grey. I felt like a flame being engulfed by a sea of plainness. I walked around, noting no mirrors or reflectors. I opened the armoire to find sets upon sets of the same outfit I wore at that moment. I saw, for the first time, that on the shirt I wore there was an ID number followed by two letters. 5892FU
I frowned. I didn't know what the number or the letters meant. I was puzzling the meaning when I heard footsteps. I was just curiously turning my head to the door when it was thrown open.
My breath caught as I pressed myself against the armoire. There were four men. That having been four more human beings than I had remembered ever seeing.
"5892FU?" One asked sternly. He was in the center and he took up plenty of room. I could barely see the door that was not three feet behind him. He was bulky and large, but held none of the awkwardness you might expect with one his size. He was lethal and he was aware of it. I was aware of it.
It took me a moment to realize he was addressing me. For a brief span of time, I opened my mouth. I tried to form something, anything, to say, but couldn't. It felt awkward and unrehearsed. I was confident I had the ability to speak. No, it wasn't inability that halted me. What stopped me was plain and simple: fear. It gripped me and clogged my throat, preventing any attempt at speech. So I nodded instead..
"She's awake." One man said to the front man's left. This man, the one who had spoken, was slender. Three of him could hide behind the front man.
"She was supposed to be unconscious for hours more." The rough front man stated, sounding rather annoyed about my state of consciousness.
"We didn't know how the serum would affect her." The slender man admitted, sounding nervous.
A third man, to the other side of the front man moved forward. He was neither large nor slender. He was average in every sense. Except, it seemed, in his patience. That seemed far smaller than average. Or so my near vacant memory informed me. "This is ridiculous." He snarled, his voice deep, rough, and feral. He looked me in the eye, standing not steps in front of me. "What do you remember?"
My words choked me. They caught in my throat, constricted by my lack of recollection and more incessant fear. I shook my head frantically, my hair flying all over.
"Where were you born?" He asked curtly.
I racked through my brain, trying to turn over every rock for any memory. Either the rocks were chained or just too big because my search was fruitless. I shrugged, feeling both mentally and physically pained by my confusion.
"What is your name?"
I frowned, frustration eating at me. I shrugged again, slowly shrinking to the ground. The men were large and intimidating, leaving me feeling small and weak. I said nothing, but it was clear. I had no idea. Not about anything. Not about anyone. Not about myself.
"Where did you go to school?" He asked, his words now a rapid fire stream of questions I could not answer. Continuously, I gave no reply. "What were your parent's names?" I just looked at the ground, refusing to give into the temptation to cry in front of these men.
Repeatedly, his questions sparked no visible reaction. That is until he asked, "What color is the sky?" It was then that my head snapped up out of perplexity.
That question threw me. It was a question of common sense and common knowledge rather than a question of personal memory. It took me a moment to figure out how to work my mouth before I could respond.
"Blue." I croaked, my voice raw from lack of use or overuse. I had no way of knowing.
He nodded and turned back to the others. "See? Who cares if she woke? She knows what she needs to know."
I wanted to ask what he means, but I drowned in my helplessness. The front man glared at me and then nodded. Wordlessly, without explanation, he and his men departed, leaving me alone with my unspoken questions.
With no clock or means of time I just sat there. I explored my own mind, finding nothing but an endless maze with no purpose or exit. There were no markers of a life having been lived.
I had no idea how much time had passed when another man entered. A different man, but one not much kinder. This man was dressed in stark white and he carried a tray.
"Here's your dinner."
Dinner. Did that make it evening? I looked at the food cautiously. I couldn't recall my last meal, but I knew I had to have had a meal recently. It was weird.
He set the tray on my bed. The tray was also grey.
I was beginning to hate the color grey.
The food was oddly vibrant though. "What is this?" I asked, my voice no louder than a whisper.
"Food," he replied curtly. I waited for him to walk out, but he remained. "Eat." He said.
I looked down at the tray. It was a bowl of a brown liquid with chunks of food that beamed with color. My mind provided the word soup, but at the same time, what laid before me seemed…off. Too bright. Even the drink, which I recognized as milk, seemed too…white.
I picked up the supplied spoon and ate slowly, always keeping an eye on the man in white. Like its appearance, the food tasted too vibrant. It was all just too...much. My apprehension of this place increased.
But, with the man in white watching me, I ate it all numbly, My stomach accepted it gratefully, just now realizing it was hungry. When I was done I sat on my bed rigidly. "Thank you." I whispered, fearing that anything other than politeness might not be in my best interest.
He took my tray and left. He didn't speak a word as he did.
Is it possible to miss the human interaction I can't recall? Surely I had had it. Hadn't I?
I slept fitfully, my dream filled with fire and ash.
My throat is raw when I wake. I think I was screaming. For some reason, that didn't seem odd to me.
I was sitting on my bed when the door opened. It was a similar routine. A man in white brought me too-bright soup and too-white milk. I ate and I drank. I finished it all, trying not to contemplate the contents too deeply. When I was done, he left. This happened twice that day. Twice the next. And twice the next.
Sleep may have haunted me with pain and fire, but as a way to die I feared loneliness. Was it possible to die from isolation? Perhaps I would find out, I wondered more than one day. Perhaps I was an experiment to discover. Perhaps there were people watching me at this moment.
Perhaps. Perhaps. Perhaps.
I had far too much time to think. Far too much time to use the word 'perhaps'. It was filled with questions I could not answer, but was dying to.
Soon I began trying to talk to the man in white. "Why am I here?" I would ask, my voice hoarse from the previous nights sleep. I woke screaming nearly every time.
He would tell me to eat.
I take a bite. Swallow. "Are there others?"
He would tell me to eat.
It continued like this each meal. I never got a reply other than to eat.
On my fourth day I asked no questions. I had grown tired of the rejection of communication.
I ate in silence. I spent my afternoon sitting against the metal headboard of my bed. When that grew uncomfortable I sat on the floor and leaned against the bed. When I became restless I paced. Boredom and loneliness became indistinguishable from one another.
I stared at the door. There was a small glass window that looked into a grey hallway. Grey bled everywhere. It was all I knew.
I would stare at that window, desperate for a reflection, but it offered very little, giving away only a teasing glimpse of myself, too vague to make out details.
What were the colors of my eyes? Were they bland? Was my hair too ostentatious that the rest of me must be inconspicuous? I seemed to be shorter than average, but, other than my brief meetings with the grown men, I had no one to judge it to.
My nose seemed average and straight. My ears, perhaps a little small, but not extremely so. My fingers appeared slender and long.
On that fourth night, sleep came uneasily, as every night, but with that following day came the biggest change I'd known in my short second life span.
In sleep I watched the world burn, but in even more detail.
Bird songs became screams. Trees roared in anguish. The Earth sobbed as water fell from the sky, but the fire was not to be tamed. The falling water seemed irrelevant to the flames. Everything burned, leaving a black and scarred planet. And then the sun rose. And then, out of the ash, a small sapling sprouted.
I awoke covered in sweat and with a raw throat, feeling an odd mix of utter terror and true hope.
The man in white fed me the same meal. When he left, a man in black walked in. Instinctively I took a step back still nervous after my first meeting with the men in black.
"Follow me," he said in a rough voice. I did as instructed. While I was admittedly terrified, I was also simultaneously thrilled to see something other than my plain, small room.
We walked down the corridor. We took eight turns. Three rights and five lefts. We went through six doors, the first three are locked. We passed fourteen doors. We entered the fifteenth door, which was also locked, and climbed up to the seventh level from what I assumed to be the basement.
My eyes eagerly and greedily drank in every sight. Out of either eagerness or anxiety, I began counting relentlessly.
When we exited my room, we took a total of four lefts and two rights. We passed a total of sixteen doors. We entered the seventeenth, also locked, and passed nineteen doors in a hallway that held hands with eternity. The twentieth door we stopped at. The man put a regular key into the lock and gestured me to go in. It was nearly the same as the room we had just left from.
"I don't understand." I whispered.
The man just walked out, closing the door, locking it. After a hesitant and cautious pause, I walked around.
The room was just a little bigger. The bed was bigger too, a little softer as well, or so it felt. The armoire was wooden, instead of the overused grey, and held my usual outfit. Although, in addition to the grey ones, there are matching red shirts. It's a fire red, rather than a bleeding red. They, too, displayed the ID number 5892FU. My confusion heightened.
I noticed a second door that was, of course, grey. In it was a grey toilet, a simple white sink, and a simple shower with a glass panel. There was no mirror. I saw a plain, white towel and a simple bottle I assumed was for showering.
The idea of showering there, while it exhilarated me, also made me nervous. I didn't know where I was or if anyone was watching, but my resolve cracked. I rushed to the armoire and grabbed grey pants and a grey shirt, the red ones made me feel inexplicably uneasy. There was a meaning behind them. It was similar to how my numbers made me feel. I didn't know why.
I showered, drinking in the feeling of cleanliness. I used the stuff I presumed to be hair product. It was sticky and felt odd, but made my hair feel cleaner and softer when it was washed through.
I was saddened when I had finally convinced myself I should get out. Using the towel I quickly dried myself and changed into clean clothes. I had no hair brush, so I did the best I could with my fingers.
It was not so long after my hair had finished drying that the man in white returned. Same meal. Same silence. When he left I went to my bed feeling exhausted and apprehensive towards the following day.
Everything was silent as I attempted to sleep. The type of silent where your imagination explored further than you permitted. It dove fearlessly into all the dark corners and brought back with it suspicious imaginative sounds and fear inducing shadows.
So I had no idea if it was my increasing insanity or my last slipping grasp on sanity that heard the noise come from my door. It wasn't like the quick and sudden charge of the men in black, or the purposeful and swift opening of the man in white. I had no clue what color the person who walked in would be wearing.
I had not expected it to be grey.
I practically fell off of my bed jumping back from the grey clad boy in front of me. I scampered to the back wall, pressing into it, as if, I could blend with the wall. Become invisible.
The boy gave me a crooked smile. "I'm not gonna hurt you," he assured. His smile grew as he took a step forward. "My God, you've got to be about my age." He said incredulously. I gave no reply.
There were others like me.
He, too, had the same grey outfit, same plain shoes. He also had an ID number that I couldn't read in the dark or from this distance.
I was not alone.
He spoke again. "I'm sorry. It's just…we don't typically get new people who are already about my age. They're usually younger." He explained.
"Who are you?" I whispered.
The boy's crooked smile returned again. I couldn't make out much about him. He was tall with a muscular build, but not bulky. His hair was darker, but not dark. A brown, perhaps?
"They call me Aaron."
"Who are you?" I repeated.
He took a cautious step forward. "That's tough to answer considering I'm not quite sure myself."
That caught my interest. "You don't have your memory either?" I asked slowly, aware of his nearing presence.
He shook his head. "None of us do."
"None…there are more you...us?"
He nodded. "About three dozen, maybe?"
About three dozen. There were about three dozen people like me.
I was not alone.
Suddenly my questions became dire. "Why are we here? What did we do? Who are we? Why don't we remember anything? Who am I."
He laughed, holding his hand out. "Slow down. I don't know everything, unfortunately. I have the same questions myself, honestly. He took another step forward, his mood suddenly calm, serious, and sympathetic. "You're going to be okay. I know you're afraid. We've all been there." He paused. He smiled. "Your hair is red," he noticed. "An odd red, darker than is typical."
I was speechless, completely without a response.
His smile was kind. Friendly. "I like it." He stated very matter-of-factly "It's different." He looked me in the eyes, his mood back to serious. "Listen, I can't stay much longer, just to be sure. I promise I'll see you as soon as the Zookeepers let us go in the evening. We can talk…about adjusting and...certain things. If you'd like. You'll understand what I mean."
I tried not to notice my heart jump in excitement and nervousness at his use of 'we'. Plural. Others. Yet, all I could say was a short, choked out question. "Zookeeper?"
He chuckled softly as he walked even closer, now only a child's handful of feet away. "Yeah. They're the guys decked out in white. The ones who feed us crap enriched food like we're animals." No words could be formed when my thoughts were so disordered. He was barely two feet away when he said:
"Welcome to the Zoo, Red. It's a wild ride."
By the end of this statement, he was a foot away. I closed my eyes for only a moment, or so I thought.
Recently edited. Hope it's better. :)
I apologize if I have any typos or if one sentence just sounds stupid. If you catch any of those, let me know in a review or PM. PLEASE REVIEW!