I hold my breath, sweat trickling down the side of my otherwise composed face.
"Sanna 195-C" the professor calls, resulting in a daunted looking girl with mousy brown hair being pushed from the crowd.
She's wearing the same white uniform as the rest of us. She looks like us, she dresses like us, she came from the same situation as us. She is like us, yet they shove her forward trying to avoid expulsion from the program into the world outside, a world of certain death. Is this what we have come to?
She looks around the crowd frantically searching for a friendly face in this unforgiving crowd.
Her eyes and mine lock, hers a delicate blue full of pleading and sorrow, mine stone cold. I don't budge.
She looks like she's about to have a panic attack as the professor nods at the two burly looking guards leaning against the wall near the only door leading to the main hallway. They grab her by the arms as she tries with all that’s left in her frail bones, frantically clawing at their arms and kicking at their shins, in an attempt to escape their grasp.
I turn my head away trying to avoid the scene. We knew we wouldn’t make it. Not all of us, not a large number of us, but maybe if we were lucky a handful would live to see the next day, or the next 109,500.
I cast one last look at Sanna, oh Sanna, why Sanna? Why my sister by all, but blood? My little sister that I promised I’d protect with my life.
Each thought comes like a slap in the face. They're all true. I can move. I can argue I can fight I can what?... Sentence us both to death?
I feel a gentle hand on my shoulder, the fists I didn't realize I was clenching release as the tension escapes my body. Turning I see the grim face of Joyce. Otherwise known as Joyce 299-C, she is the epitome of dour. That has to be ironic.
Her eyes soften as they meet mine. “It will be okay” she whispers in a tone that falls somewhere on the spectrum between comforting and empty.
I want to hug her, to pull her close that way no one could ever take her from me. She’s all I have left of my once perfect world, well almost perfect. There was never such a thing as perfect. There was littering, minor crime, political debates that ruined Thanksgiving, but I would take listening to uncle Dan go on about how blahdy blahdy blah is so great because they did blahdy blah blah which makes them ‘way’ better than blah blah blah than suffer through this. At least then Sanna and I would be enduring our suffering together. Sanna…
They're probably wiping her arm down with an alcohol wipe preparing to slip the thin needle of the syringe into a vein on her wrist as if she was receiving her yearly vaccinations. Like they'd care if the wound became infected, she'd be long dead before it would matter… Dead. Sanna dead...
Like Reina? Images of a witty green-eyed redhead, pale complexion lightly dusted with freckles, fills my head.
Like Tyler? My mind fogs over, the humorous, quite clumsy, blond boy who had quite literally had to use duct tape after he broke his glasses for the third time, in one MONTH.
Like Dante? The ever sarcastic, dark-skinned, computer whiz, and genius in all subjects relating to tech.
A dam breaks inside of me and tears spring to my eyes as I crumple to the floor. I don't notice the firm squeeze on my right arm. I don't notice as others turn to stare in my direction slipping me looks of sympathy, pity, and dread. I don't even notice as the professor calls my name. All I can think about is our little family. Sanna: dead, Reina; dead, Tyler; dead, Dana; repurposed for experimental use, Jonathan; repurposed for experimental use, Martin; expelled, Ximena; Stasis. They're gone, only Ximena has a running chance of survival, maybe Joyce.
Strong hands grip me by the arms yanking me to my feet. I turn, finding myself face to face with one of the very guards that lead my sister down her path to the afterlife. I can only conclude that he has come to do the same for me. I do not resist.
The guards drag me down the hallway, the throat of the beast that is this foundation. They bring me to a sterile room at the end of the hallway strapping me to an operation type table.
I stare blankly as a woman in a pristine lab coat tests the bubbles in a syringe. Part of me is horrified, these will be the last faces I see in my present life. I will never laugh again. I will never dance again. I won't even get to have my first girlfriend. At the age of 15, I'll have died, having the only female I've ever kissed be my own mother. Pathetic, I startle a laugh out of myself.
Screw them all, if I'm going to die, I'm going to die laughing.
That was the last thought I had before the world went dark.
I didn't expect to open my eyes again so you can imagine my shock when I find that the blinding light is NOT guiding me to the afterlife but instead is the light of the facility.
"What the," I start out only to realize it came as nothing more than muffled groans. Clamps release from around my wrist as a clear fluid drains from the bottom of the chamber. Chamber? I didn't fall asleep in a chamber.
Plastic breathing tubes remove themselves from my throat for what has to be the first time in 300 years. I gasp partly out of shock, partly because even after three minutes of sitting incomprehensibly, I hadn't yet dared take so much as half a breath out of fear of shattering the illusion, but it doesn't break. It's real. And so is Jocey walking straight towards me.
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Can I just start off by saying...this leaves so much creativity for a part 2!!! Aka, I really want a part two LOL!!!! Your writing makes the reader stare at the screen and keep reading without daring to blink. The emotions in this piece were just so spectacular, and I felt like I was IN the story. And yes, I know you've got this before but, Lier is supposed to be Liar :) Amazing job!
Thank you. I plan to make several sequels and prequels for Stasis. If and when the prompt appears and I have time, I plan to go into the backstories and the future of the characters both living and not. What would you think of a story through Sanna's eyes?
Oh wow that would be very appealing and interesting to read! Anything you write is spectacular, so I'm excited for you next piece! Keep writing! :D
This had really good emotion. I loved it so much, and I believe that you, unlike most people that are writers, used easy-to-read and short sentences, which is very important for a good writer. I loved the storyline!! Good job!! This deserves more recognition.
Thank you. I have been trying out different writing styles trying to find ones I prefer. I am glad you liked my story and would be interested in knowing if there is any part you believe could be developed upon further. I have a few ideas for possible connected stories, but no guarantee I will have the chance to properly develop them any time soon.
Yay!! I'll be glad to check them out once they are posted someday!!
i want to know what happens next. I'm going to go read part 2 now.
Forgive the dumb, but is this time travel from the Holocaust to modern day hospital covid-19? Or...?
Stasis takes place in a sort of dystopian future. I can't dive into too much depth without giving away details I would rather reveal in further sequels, but I would recommend reading "Pincushion (Part 2 of Sasis)" If you are curious.
Ok, thanks, I will. It's not you, it's me - this style always throws me for a loop at first.
I love this! Just one thing which is “ Lier” is spelt Liar.
Thanks. The "Lier" slipped past me while I was checking.
that happens...I hate proofreading hahah
I’m left with so many questions, Abigail! The potential is endless. I loved the emotional rollercoaster the MC goes through in the short sequence of events you described, that’s a lot more realistic and entertaining than simple fear. If anything, I would advise you to support your narrative a bit more, give us background on the character and their loved ones, who they are, why we should care. I enjoyed reading!
Thank you for commenting. I have not had much time lately to write here, but given the chance, if the right prompt pops up and I have time, I have been considering writing into the future and the past of the characters. Would you be more interested in seeing the group as a whole or their lives individually?
I honestly think you could go both ways and make an equally interesting story. The tone-internal monologue vs character dynamics-will be very different, so it depends on your preference.