I am in search of someone, anyone that would like to be my writing "buddy." Basically
to read my stuff and give feedback and of course vice versa . My genre is mostly science fiction but I am looking for anyone that is passionate!
I am pretty laid back and open, so teach me, critiize me , inspire me! It's all good.
Food helps me think.
I sat at a small table with my soup and I thought about all the possibilities that Helen could have to discuss with me. My mind immediately went to the worse case scenario for me, which would be to get rid of my department. If they could give anyone clearance and have a team to prevent attacks what were we really here for? No, that couldn't be it. They don't have time to do the tasks we do or they think it below them. No, I am certain they need us. Maybe we did something we weren't suppose to with a server? Some kind of security protocol. I know we follow the companies rules . In fact I am a stickler when it comes to doing things right because it is my tail on the line. My mind came back to what John said. They found something. OK, cool but why am I involved in this? It could be that it is just procedure to notify all department heads of major discovery. That didn't make sense to me either. I wouldn't need to be informed of any major findings. I would most likely find out with the rest of the world watching a press conference.
I looked down at my bowl which was now empty. I checked the time, I had zoned out for a good 45 minuets. I should get back to the office and see what the team is doing. I walked back through the maze of hallways and down the stairs. No one was in the office so I figured they all went out for lunch. I plopped down at my desk and look at my email notifications. Nothing good. Just some spam for weight loss pills. Helen didn't tell me an exact time but I figured I had a little under an hour. I dove into some more busy work; waiting. A little after I started working the guys came back from lunch.
“Hey guys, how was lunch?” I asked genuinely wanting to know.
“It was good. We talked a lot about the email.” Said Trevor
“Jade, I think this is something big. They have extra security downstairs. I took us almost 10 minuets to get through the lobby.” said John
Extra security? Those two words made me think that none of this; the email ,the server being wiped, is not standard procedure. The really did find something! But I ask myself again, what does that have to do with me?
“Really? That's odd.” I said trying to not react to the information I was just given.
“It really was. I know they have security always but this seemed to be very different. They took extra time with everyone and searched everything we had on our possession.” said Brett.
I looked at the clock. “Well, I am sure we will know soon enough. I am going tot hit the bathroom before Helen comes down.” I walked out of the office and down the hall to the ladies room. My stomach was in knots. I wasn't sure if it was from excitement, nerves, or fear. Calm down Jade, the world isnt ending. If this was something dangerous we would have all been notified or evacuated. At least I think we would have been. I finished up and walked back to the office where I found Helen waiting for me in a chair at my desk.
I secretly love Jeff Goldblum
He finds his way into all of my stories.
“What if it's directions to destroy mankind?” said Brett. “That would solve the problem.” We all laughed because this wasn't the first time this topic had come up. It has been a sort of inside joke for years now. People destroy earth, destroy people. It was very Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic park. The phrase was usually followed by one of us quoting him “Life uh...finds a way” Then we would laugh hysterically.
What we have become.
You can't have an opinion or original thought in this digital disaster we call Earth. Empathy is replaced by hostile comments on strangers “walls”. Walls that don't require wood, plaster or paint. Instead of sending flowers or gifts when a loved one has passed we send fake prayers through a keyboard. Lives are no longer kept behind closed doors by choice. Our heads are always in a cloud of pictures,jokes, remedies, and false information. We have become nothing because we actively seek out to learn nothing. This is how the human race has evolved. Right in front of our eyes, or screens.
A work in progress
I come from far away. Where you ask? Well, its hard to explain but I come from right here. Right in this very spot. This was the very spot I was in not 5 minutes ago. Although, now this spot has changed. I was in this park, by this tree staring at this lake. But now the park isn't a park but just some land. There aren't any jungle gyms or walking trails. There aren't any families having picnics or lovers stealing kisses. No. No, now its just land and a lake. A lake that doesn't look like water but more like a thick substance. The movement of it is grotesque like flesh sliding off bone. There is a putrid smell coming off from it and it stings my eyes. I looked down at the ground only to see that the grass in this place doesn't look like grass. It isn't green or even brown from a hot summer. The color almost looks luminescent. The color changes of each blade depending on how you look at it. I look up to the sky almost too afraid to see what weird changes it will take on. It doesn't look to have changed much but now it has a thin haze over it. It reminds me of smog in highly populated cities like Los Angeles.
The way this world looks may be why I am here. I am still not 100% sure on that. Why am I here? I am not a scientist or someone with a high IQ. I don't understand physics or ponder about what is out there other than us. When they explained this mission to me I just nodded my head accepting everything they told me as truth. They were the educated ones , not me. I know one thing for certain; they chose me because I don't have much. I have a very simple life that would not effect the world if I was not in it. I don't mean that in a suicidal way. I just don't, in my opinion , contribute much to society. I work for a company I don't know much about. I work downstairs in the IT department. I don't fix computers or do technical work either. I watch over the educated people that do that task. I am basically a glorified secretary that makes schedules. The team I look after doesn't answer to me they answer to my boss. I am there to take calls and organize appointments.
The only real detail I know about the company is the name, JoCrai Industry, and that it has 5 different departments . One being the department of Scientific discovery. The company is manly science based but there is a non profit sector that helps inner city children learn science and math. I tried applying to that department but unfortunately I did not have the credentials. I could have them but that was a decision I made for myself.
Growing up I was pushed to do well in school and go to college. I managed to do that although I have had absolutely no interest in higher learning since I could say my alphabet. To me school was a brainwashing institute where they taught everyone the same curriculum. There was not room for interpretation in my opinion. This kind of thinking also didn't make me very popular in school. I thought everything was a waste of time. Prom? No thanks. Football games? Please. Drama club, Honor Society, Math club, all of this bored me. I did join one club though,chess club,mainly to shut my mother up. Also mainly because I used to play with my Dad every Sunday before he passed away. I was definitely his daughter. We thought the same things about the world. My Mother on the other hand was a cookie cutter image of what society expected of everyone. Her experiences in school were much different than mine. She was likable and a natural at most activities. For the first two years of high school she would make little comments about being in clubs. They would mostly consist of the words “friends”, “loner” and “socialize”. She was,like everyone else, under the impression that in order to be happy you need to surround yourself with people. I knew better. I wasn't depressed, trust me my mom had me go to many doctors, I just liked being alone. So when college rolled around I was optimistic about the challenge because it seemed like an environment an introvert could succeed at. I decided to major in financing. I liked numbers and most jobs were spent over spreadsheets helping clients that many times you did not meet. I did horrible. Turns out liking something and actually being able to do it is two different battles. I always did well in math but when I got to college the courses ate me up and spit me up. I endured two years before I decided to come back home. A couple of years and numerous random jobs went before I found JoCrai. Overseeing a group of people sounded horrible but the pay was amazing for not having a degree and the hours and benefits were unmissable. Cut to 10 years later and I am still here in the same spot with a slight increase in pay. It works for me, it gets me by.
They didn't tell me much about what was going to happen on the other side. In fact, the didn't tell me anything. I was handed a a stack of papers that had procedure instructions on it. The procedures were described as initial set up. It read mostly like stereo instructions and a lot of it was beyond my capacity to understand. They didn't say anything about what comes after. I'm chalking this up to the fact that they didn't exactly know what would happen. They did tell me that in one weeks time they would fire up the machine and “bring me back.” I just had to be in this exact same spot at the exact time, which is 1:00pm. I placed a small x on the tree with a marker that I was standing under in order to remember my location. Whatever happened to me the time didn't change. In fact from start to finish it seemed to only take two minuets to get me here. I don't remember anything.
I surveyed the land once more and I noticed that two people were standing at the edge of the lake dressed in hazard suits . One of them bent down and took a water sample in a small vile. I decide to walk over to them in hopes that I can get some answers on where I am exactly. I figure if humans are here that means I am still on Earth at least. This thought was not one I ever expected to cross my mind in my lifetime. I started to move towards the two people but my legs felt sore and weak. This forced me to move a little too cautiously ,stumbling and moving slowly. This caught the attention of one of the suited individuals. Panic set in the back of my mind. I doubt a simple hello is going to explain why I suddenly showed up on the edge of a slimy lake with no protection on like these two. Come to think of it, why wasn't I given more protective clothing? I mean this jumper they gave me makes me look like I was rejected from the Ghost Busters. The other one turned around now and started waving towards me. I feel relieved, a friendly wave is nothing to be scared of. I start moving faster and the waving got quicker and more erratic. The waving has turned into more of a stopping signal. One of the suits starts moving very fast in my direction. I freeze waiting for its arrival. As the person moves slower I can see inside the suit. It was a man. A man frantically screaming at me.
“What the hell are you doing!?”
I didn't know what to say . All I could muster was a faint “ Do you know who I am?” Why I asked this question I am not sure. Of course this man didn't know who I was.
“Yes, the woman who is going to die today.”
This statement came at me like a dagger. SHIT. I must be trespassing or something. These people are going to hurt me. I take a second to look into the suit to see his face better. The face that I saw was not one of anger but of concern.
“You need a suit! You are going to be exposed to it. You may have already.” He said while his hand came out to grab me.
I moved away quickly and aggressively. I didn't know who this man was and I wasn't about to let him touch or lead me anywhere. I shook my head and said “ What am I exposed to exactly?”
“Come on don't be an idiot! We have contained this area for the most part but I cant be certain that your skin wont be exposed to left over contamination.” He grabbed for my arm again and I decided to let him. He moved me close enough that I can see his face clearly now. His eyes were big and deeply rich brown with yellow flecks in them. His hair was dark and long. It was pulled back but you could see the length. It was matched only by the beard that hung from his face. He looked kind,quiet, familiar and comforting in a strange place.
“Sorry I am not used to people telling me what to do right off the get go.” I said in hopes of calming any suspicions he might have.”I will come with you to wherever you want but I can do it on my own.” I gently tear my arm form his grasp.
He looked at me for a second contemplating my stipulations and he said “fair enough. Lets get you out of here.”
He turned around and started walking quickly away from the lake. I followed him with eager anticipation. As we walk over a small hill I noticed how the grass felt under my shoes. It didn't feel like grass. There was no crunching or smashing sound as my feet pushed down on the ground. Every time I took a step the colors of the blades would run together in a beautiful luminescent rainbow.
We kept walking towards what looked like to be a busy highway. I don't remember a highway here but it's been a long time since I've come to this park. Or what used to be a park. Part of that highway used to be a golf course. I know this for certain because I would come here in high school to smoke weed every Saturday. It was my alone time even though I was technically always alone. It was different when I came to the golf course though. I had a spot behind some trees that no one every thought to look in and it was off the course enough that golf balls rarely made an appearance. I would sit for an hour or two with a book or some music and just tune out. I would think about life and make ridiculous affirmations under a foggy brain. It was a much simpler time.
I must have been wearing my emotions on my face because the man turned around and said
“ You alright? You look like you may get sick.” Sick isn't the word I would use to describe what I am feeling right now.
“ Uh, yeah I am fine.” I said but this didn't seem to convince the man and he now looked at me harder.
“So why were you down by the lake ?” He asked cautiously.
“Why were you ?” I realized immediately that the sentence came out aggressively and the look on his face confirmed this.
“I'm sorry. I'm still trying to figure out why I am here and...” I trailed off realizing that I was telling him too much without even saying anything. I try to divert the conversation by telling him my name.
“My name is Jade. I don't think we actually got to exchange pleasantries.”
“ You're right we didn't. I'm Al.” He extended his gloved hand and I shook it. His grasp was firm but there was a shyness to it. He didn't look me in the eyes but rather down at the ground.
We continue to walk towards the highway and I take in the environment around me. It was like I was in a dream. Everything was the same but different. I realize that doesn't make sense but its the only way I can explain it. There were still cars but now they are all one color, white, and all one model, four door sedan. That was all I saw on the highway. No trucks, jeeps, SUV's, sports cars, old cars, they were all the same. There were no license plates but what looked like a holographic number displayed on the side of the car. The trees looked different as well. They sill had trunks and leaves but like the grass they were not green. Instead they had a metallic sheen to it and I swear I saw one flicker. There wasn't any wildlife scurrying around either. I haven't see one squirrel or bird since I have been here. This place seems to void of any life other than humans. Any natural life I should say. While I was surveying my surrounding we crossed a road and stopped in front of a building. It was a short walk from the lake which made me happy because I was exhausted. The building in front me looked familiar but it was without windows and it only had one door that I could see. Then it hit me. This is the hospital on 3rd street. I am on 3rd street. That makes sense because the hospital looked over the golf course and park. Well I guess if this man is taking me anywhere a hospital is the safest place I could go to. This thought monetarily made me feel better. Al opened the door to the hospital with a code he punched in on a badge. That's odd. He turned around and said “ Come on. You need testing. You have been exposed and I cant let you running around endangering other people.”
I hesitate going through the door. I've never been a danger to anyone. In fact I actively try to avoid situations were danger is involved. Which is why I have asked myself why I choose to do this a thousand times. If whatever these people are afraid shows up on me I could be in real trouble.
I start to survey the building for possible escapes just in case tings turn bad. The last thing I want is to be trapped somewhere and not be able to get back home. I don't see anything but this main door and I know for a fact Al isn't going to let me just walk away. I make the decision to move through the doorway.
As soon as I do this I feel a cool burst of air that hits me hard. It's a different kind of cold. Not like the winters cold I experience back home , but an almost soothing cold. It rushes down my spine and it makes me shiver.
“What was that?” I ask.
“Oh that is just the cleansing spray. Do you not have them where you are from? Every building should have one.” He looked concerned.
I pause for a moment and decide that the best plan of action is to go along with it and pretend I am from here. Maybe I am experiencing some kind of amnesia. Yeah that may work.
“Yeah, of course. This one just felt different.” I lied.
“ Oh, yeah that will happen. This one is industrial strength because we work directly with the substance. Nothing is getting past that thing. Unless its moved to the blood stream. Then there isn't much we can do. Which is why we have to hurry!” He moves to another set of doors and punches in a number.
I move a little bit closer so I could possibly get a glimpse of the number. I figure knowing that code couldn't be a bad thing and I learned some tricks from my Father when I was younger. Lock picking, slight of hand stuff. All in good fun. I looked over his shoulder and saw him punch in 3-7-8. After the third number he swung around towards me. I panicked and dropped to floor acting like I was sick. He came to my aid quickly.
“Are you OK!?” I looked into his eyes and I could see he was genuinely worried. He offered his hand to me.
“I'm feeling woozy. Can I use your shoulder to keep myself up?”
“Absolutly.” He said and picked me up without hesitation. He turned around and punched the numbers in again because the door has reset. 3-7-8-0. I got it. Remeber that number Jade. 3780. Why did that number remind me of something. That combination has been somewhere before. Before I could think too much into it I noticed I was being led down a hallway that was only half lit and very deserted. We onlty walked a short while until Al opened up a door with his badge located to the left of us. I tried to remember anything and everything I could while on the way to this room.
“You need to stay outside while I get you a clean suit. When you are in the diagnostic cube you can take it off.”
Shortyly he came back with a white hazmat suit . “You can put it on over your clothse. Once you get into the cube a prompt will let you know where to dispose of them for inceneration.”
I started to feel scared. This guy really means buisness. Whatever is out there, whatever I was exposed to is really dangerous. I put the suit on and move into the room with the go ahead from Al.
“Ok. Go in that door right there and I'll seal it.”
The room was an actual cube in the middle of the room much like in the movie Bubble Boy. I stepped in and turned around. A screen appeared in front of my face but there was no tv screen. The image was being projected against the wall. A strikingly beaitiful woman came on the screen and began to speak.
“ Once the door is sealed please take of anyway protective wear and dispose of it in the tube to the right. After, please lay on the table and our diganostic machine will hook up to your out plug.Thank you for using Dennington Diagnostics. Have a nice day.”
The woman disappeared and I did what I was told. I stripped the suit off me and layed down on the machine. I heard Al typing in something on the other side of the glass.
His voice came over a pa system. “Ok I am going to hook you up now. You may feel a little pressure.”
The machine whirred quietly and I could feel a tingle at the back of my neck. It felt like a kitten was licking my neck. A loud buzzer sounded and I shot up. I looked out the glass towards Al. He looked perplexed.
“Please lie back down. We will try again. This machine is ancient and sometimes it cant pick up on an out put.”
I lay back down and the same process happens again. Machine whirs, little tickle, big buzzer. Al looks even more confused. “OK, Hold on I'm going to get into a clean suit and come in. He discarded the suit he had on in a separte room and came back in with a bright new white one. He opened the door and waited for it to seal. He came over and checked the machine, runnning different test and pushing numerous buttons.
“Ok lay back down. I am going to try and plug you in manually.”
I lay back down on the cold table. He moved my hair back so that the back of my neck was visible. He jerked back suddenly and did a double take at the back of my neck. He slowly started moving backwards from me.
“What? Whast is wrong. Am I injured or something!?” I say frantically. His face has gone from gentle to terrified.
“Where the fuck is your out put?!” He screamed. He backed out the room and sealed the door behind him. He ran across the room and picked up a cellphone.
“Please don't call anyone!” I scremaed back. I didnt know what to do. I started crying. I always do that when my emotions are peaked. Its embarassing but this got him to stop.
He walked over to me “ I am going to ask you one more time before I call security. Where. In the fuck. Is your out put?”
I raised my head very slowly with tears streaming down my face. I hadf no options, I would have to tell him. I take a deep breath . “I dont have one and if you give me a couple minuets I will tell you why.”
He put the cell phone down he grabbed a chair and sat in front of the cube room. He motioned for me to proceed.
“I am all ears.”
In the end
In the end it doesn't even matter. But it did matter. It mattered to everyone you helped work through their own demons. It mattered to a young high school kid with no mother who felt that no one cared. It mattered to those who were bullied and abused. It mattered to anyone who was searching for a way to express dark feelings. You definitely mattered to thousands you didn't even know. You mattered.
So it begins...
(The start of something? maybe)
I come from far away. Where you ask? Well, its hard to explain but I come from right here. Right in this very spot. This was the very spot I was in not 5 minutes ago. Although, now this spot has changed. I was in this park, by this tree staring at this lake. But now the park isn't a park but just some land. There aren't any jungle gyms or walking trails. There aren't any families having picnics or lovers stealing kisses. No. No, now its just land and a lake. A lake that doesn't look like water but more like a thick substance. The movement of it is grotesque like flesh sliding off bone. There is a putrid smell coming off from it and it stings my eyes. I looked down at the ground only to see that the grass in this place doesn't look like grass. It isn't green or even brown from a hot summer. The color almost looks luminescent. The color changes of each blade depending on how you look at it. I look up to the sky almost too afraid to see what weird changes it will take on.(to be continued?)