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I walked down an old crumbling brick road. A road that had once been part of London. Now it was abandoned, just like every road in every country around the globe. Or so everyone in the settlement thought. We'd sent out scavengers and hunters and even a few of the military men that had volunteered. None ever came back. And the few that had, were deemed sociopaths and tossed to the scientists for experimentation.
There were only about 500 in our settlement. Meaning the head officials had cut off any and all projects to look for more living beings. They had also made sure that each family had at least three kids. But with every new child brought into our world, danger greatly increased. New species came into play. Cannibalistic house cats, hump-backed dogs, skeletal horses. All of which were quickly brought to death when seen. Those that weren't seen usually injured us or on the rare occasion of a child being involved, killed. The head official guy had collected miles of chain link fence and ordered it to be put around the compound. After we found out that didn't work, all electrical wire was took from abandoned houses and stores and threaded through the fence then charged to a extremely high voltage. That kept them out during the day. But at night when authorized people came back to the settlement with food and medical supplies from the surrounding areas, they slipped in.
Without realizing it, I had brought myself to my old residence. I stared up at the old three story Victorian style house. After the assaults and the plague we had been ordered to abandon our current residence and move inside the compound. I had cried the day my father told us we had to move. 'Us' meaning my mother, my older brother, Darrion, my twin, Gansey, and myself. I remember how the day we moved, Gansey and I had went around and touched every wall, every secret hiding place, every shrub, even the old statue of Apollo that Gansey had broken his arm on a number of times. I smile now, remembering. This had been my favorite place. Out of all 6 places we had lived before the Disaster, this old house had been my absolute favorite. The Disaster had happened 7 years ago when I was 11. Meaning, I was in my awkward phase. Everything sucked; everything was horrible. The fact that I loved that house even when I didn't yet know who I was yet, made it special.
The old watch I wore when I went out on my own, beeped. Startled, I checked it. The block letter read 8 o'clock A.M. Great, I was going to be late. With one last glance and a promise that I would be back, I ran. Thank the gods that my old home was only 10 minutes from the place in the fence that was never on. With each footfall, my old reliable Converse made a small noise. I came upon the fence all to quickly. Out of habit, I stare up at it. All looming 15 feet of it. The guard towers which are placed every 300 feet appear to be empty, due to a shift change. Stealthily, I crouch down and slid through a small broken place in the chain link. Without so much of a glance back towards old London, I quickly hurry towards home.
Within 10 minutes, I'm standing in the back doorway of my house. Quietly, I hurry up the servants stairwell. I make it to my room without disturbing my father or mother. I sigh with relief as I shut my door.
"So, where were you?" A voice cuts through my thoughts.
I yelp in surprise and reach for my knife, only to see Gansey. He sits on my bed, with a smirk on his face.
"Out." I say and head towards my closet.
"The Outlands." I say and slip out of my dirty jeans and t-shirt.
"And you didn't invite your better half?" He says and laughs. I look over the dressing screen to look at him. His smirk has changed to a smile that shows off his dimple.
"Well, I left at 6 and you were still passed out." I slip into a black halter top dress that hits mid-thigh and place my feet into extremely uncomfortable white pumps.
"You could have woke me up." Gansey says and holds out a ponytail holder.
"Thank you. And I didn't have time to wait for you to wake up. As it is I'm already going to be late." I say and pull my silver hair up into a long ponytail.
"What is this job anyway?" Gansey asks and holds the front door open for me.
"Medical Research along with Surgical Internship."
"Then why are you so dressed up?" He asks. By now we're out on the street headed for the town square.
"Mum said to dress up. She didn't want me showing up in my ripped jeans and Doctor Who shirt." I reach down into my bag for my wallet, which thankfully I grabbed in my hurry.
Suddenly, I feel dizzy. I stop and try to grab Gansey's arm, but he's not there. I turn my head and see him, sprawled on the ground. That is the last thing I see before darkness over takes me.
* * * * *
I wake up on the ground. My head throbs and I try to sit up. Gansey still lays beside me, dazed now and not passed out like before.
"Gan?" I ask and look around. I don't hear his answer though. Because on the side of the grocery story a message is scrawled up in red paint.
THIS WAS ONLY A DREAM