—Attainment rate of the functional redesign of the brain lobes: 97'6%. Increase of the potential of the cerebellum: 74'3%. Connection of the cerebellum with the agremonic cord by electrical synapses: successfully achieved. High development and sensitivity of the vestibular system confirmed. Proper development of the agremonic system confirmed. Conversion from icarian-human hybrid to gyroscope charger: successfully achieved.
From the other side of the window, the icarian war hero Anchises stared at the girl that was still in an artificial coma. He was accompanied by General Betelgeuse.
—You already know how you're gonna name her? —she asked.
Anchises shook his head.
—Why don't you just keep using her first name?
—Humans have awful taste for names.
The main doctor left the room and approached them.
—She'll awake in some hours. Here and now her vital signs are up to standard, but I can't ensure it will remain this way during the day, much less in an uncontrolled atmosphere. Anyway, you already know what you're dealing with. Do you still wish to take here away while she's asleep?
—I don't want the first thing she sees to be a blank white wall.
—Let it be, but keep in mind that all the other subjects had their vital signs affected when they woke up.
—Because they did it in a damn room, smelling disinfectant, connected to weird machines and hearing annoying noises —he talked back—. Try to imagine it: you wake up, feeling as if a lightning bolt had just gone through your body, and you can't remember anything. Anything at all. You don't even have a clue what you're name is. Then you see strange people staring at you, and you realize you can't talk either, even if you can understand them. And they began to touch and observe you, as if you were some kind of strange thing… I'd freak me out, pretty much.
The doctor rolled his eyes. Betelgeuse restrained a guffaw.
—As I said, you already know what you're dealing with. Only remember to sign the papers that it was your idea.
The doctor went down the hall while his assistants prepared the girl to be carried away. Betelgeuse laughed.
—It has always struck me how you can make any situation look as if it was going to freak somebody out.
—It's my greatest attribute. How do you thing I did to reconquer old Deimonos a couple of hundred years back?
—Oh, I almost had forgotten it!
The assistants left the room.
—She's ready, master. Be careful —asked one nurse.
Anchises put on his backpack.
—I'm not going in —said Betelgeuse, raising her hands—: I hate hospital rooms, I'll just wait here.
She saw him drawing near the white bed with small steps, grimacing at the smell of sterilized instruments. He lifted her up in his arms and got out of the place, breathing deeply once he crossed the door.
—What a terrifying smell! —he complained. He pressed the sleeping body to his chest—. And to think that she would wake up in such an environment… none of that!
Betelgeuse smiled. Their eyes met, and they gaze at each other.
—You sure are gonna do right this time.
—You don't say!
Both of them had grey skin, in contrast with the pale colour of the girl's. Betelgeuse waited a bit to talk again.
—See you in a year, then.
—See you in a year.
Some hours were left until the break of dawn, and the forest was filled with shadows and silence. A layer of mist covered the ground of damp and smooth soil. Anchises arrived at the hill in front of the great lake, and laid the girl gently on the ground, beneath the weeping willow. He sat down next to her, filled his pipe with old tobacco and began smoking.
After some drags, he opened his bag and took out his radio, which had the shape of a thin and rectangular black box. He turned it on, and listened to a programme, his favourite one, that presented the news in a humoristic way.
—... it's always funny to see how you struggle to stay awake, Acrion!
As the light began to shape the skyline, he laughed.
A snake, ten times bigger than the biggest of the terrestrial snakes, surfaced through the water to breathe, and then dived nose first to return into the deep of the lake.
—... yeah, tomorrow our special guest will be Mia, the muse of the famous sculptor, but I won't see any difference because I always have pretty Acrion sitting in front of me.
—I'll marry you some day.
Anchises laughed and noticed, out of the corner of his eye, that the girl had sat up, and was rubbing her eyes and forehead.
—Good morning, young queen —he said, without looking at her.
The girl looked around, confused. Dawn was breaking above the lake. She turned to him, and Anchises felt a shiver when he saw that her eyes had become red, as a rare result of her being turned into a gyroscope charger.
She opened her mouth, gasping and coughing.
—Mo... Morning! —she finally coughed, smiling.
—My name is Anchises —he introduced himself. She smiled.
—Right! Now, we have to give you a name...
—Huh, that's it.
He sighed and looked around, too. She tried to get up, collapsing every time, trying to find her centre of balance. It seemed like she had to learn how to walk again. On the ground, she saw a red bird on the branches above her head, and pointed at it.
—Ah, pretty! —she shouted, excited—. Pretty!
—That's a tarpeia. You like it? It's true it's a pretty bird... there are no birds like this one on the Earth.
She got up, although slightly unbalanced. Anchises approached her and touched her neck for several minutes. She didn't complain.
—Well, it seems like you have no fever, and your pulse rate is normal... we may leave, then.
He turned off the radio and put it away in his backpack, which he wore, and began walking away from her. He noticed that she was not following, but was still staring at the bird.
—Tarpeia! —he called, and the girl turned to him. He smiled—; come on, we have to go.
The mist was disappearing. There were people observing the scene from a distance, in the trees, for Anchises and the girl not to notice them.
—So, she is the last one, right?—asked a boy. His skin had the same colour as Tarpeia's.
—How old is she? —asked the only girl—, she seems to be so childish.
—All of you guys went through that phase —answered Betelgeuse—, but you don't remember it. Even if her body is eighteen years old, her brain only is five.
—And, just like us, her body won't get much older, right Betelgeuse?—asked the same boy.
—As long as she remains a gyroscope charger, it's right.
—And how long is that phase?
—A year long. After that, bit by bit, her brain will recover the maturity it had immediately before being turned into a gyroscope charger. It's a crucial phase: everything she doesn't learn to do with the agremonic system in this first year, she won't be able to learn it anymore in the future.
—But, then... I can't learn to do anything new with the agremonic system, can I? Because a year and a half have passed since I became a gyroscope charger...
—Right —answered Betelgeuse—, and you can notice that to me you're still so unbearable than in the first day.
They looked at them disappearing among the tallest trees.
—Why doesn't she stay with us, like we did? —asked the girl—: Damis has always told me that social interaction is as important as training for mental health.
—Anchises wants to do things his own way, like he did with the gyroscope charger of the former generation.
—Who was it?
—The migratory bird.
Everybody became silent. It was taboo to talk about that gyroscope charger.
—I just hope Anchises has given her a real name, and not again the name of a bird —was the last thing Betelgeuse said.
Hi there! Just wanted to say that since english is not my first lenguage, it remains quite difficult for me to write. So please, if you see anything incorrect (even if it's a typo) or any sentence that sounds weird, do not doubt about telling me!