The wooden door of the front lobby swung open, revealing a girl, probably no more than 8 years of age. The entire room went silent, except for some whispers and murmurs, all attention drawn towards her. She had shoulder-length curly blond hair, her figure wrapped in a pink dress-or at least, it used to be pink-that had lost its color so much that it was the same color as her skin. Her lips were pale as a corpse’s, and she had blue irises, so light that they looked almost invisible. Loud clops echoed across the room as the general hurriedly stepped towards the girl, clearly annoyed that her black, expensive-looking stilettos were slowing her down. The plump woman stood in front of the girl and coughed, clearing her throat.
“As you may have noticed, we have a new member.” She announced, fixing her grey jacket. “Her name is Marie. Her power is still unknown, so she will be joining the class for the undetermined. And to those of you who are planning to bully her,” She eyed a group of smirking girls in the corner, “You will receive a horrible, horrible punishment, as written in the rule book. Back to your classes.” The crowd murmured in protest, but receiving a piercing glare from the plump woman, returned to their lessons, muttering. Without the pale girl knowing, a pair of green eyes were watching her in interest, smiling, before disappearing into the crowd.
The girl gripped her hunting knives tighter, sweat dripping down her hands as the group approached them. Her eyes immediately recognized the 20 year-old girl at the very front. No matter how hard she tried, she could never forget those eyes, the ones that used to look at her lovingly. The group stopped a few metres away, staring at them proudly, weapons ready.
“Back off, little girl. This is none of your business.” She coldly told her.
“Never.” The girl replied.
The 20 year old chuckled. “You’re still the same stubborn idiot like you used to be, I see.”
“And you’re still a selfish, power-seeking lunatic.” The girl smiled.
“Don’t blame me if you die today, little girl. I gave you a chance.” She smirked, pointing her knife at them. “Attack.”
“Now now, Ms. Dale, sit.” The woman ordered in her posh accent, sitting up straight on the leathery armchair. I arched my eyebrow, confused, standing still.
“I said, sit.” She said firmly, her misty hazel eyes looking straight into mine. I felt chills flowing down my spine, and gulping, pulled the armchair in front of her and sat on it. It was fluffy, so fluffy that my tiny, bony body nearly sank into it, but I managed to sit up straight. Well, sort of. She searched in the pocket on her grey jacket and took out a black pen and a tiny notepad, and put them on the glass table between us. She tried drawing some lines on the first page, but it left nothing but dents on the paper. She shook it, trying to get its ink out, but the pen was dead. Her face turned red of anger, and she growled angrily. Slowly, white steam emerged from her hand as the pen evaporated into thin air, and my jaw dropped. She looked back up, her eyes widened, realizing that I was still there, and her expression turned calm. Smiling, she said, “Oh, I apologize. My temper is incontrollable sometimes.” I nodded, smiling nervously.
She searched in the pocket on her matching skirt and found another pen, this one blue, and tried it on the notepad. She smiled when blue ink flowed out of the tip, and looked back at me. “I know that you must have some questions to ask. Ask anything, absolutely anything.”
I had only one question, the only one that made me wonder for years, and I was somehow sure she knew the answer.
“Why do they want to kill me?"
She looked at me and bit her lip. “See, child. Some people on this Earth are well… Special. You are one of them, your ancestors being the result of wrong experimentation by human being,” she said disgustedly, “of creating a life. I am one too. We are gifted with special… Abilities, you can say. Humans are frightened of our powers, and so we are hunted. Here, you train to be strong, and to blend in with most human to survive.”
“Is Granny… One too?” I asked. She nodded weakly.
“Is that why she got killed?” She nodded again, pursing her lip, looking at me with pity. "Every life of our kind is very precious. Your grandmother was a very, very brave woman. She will be missed."
Memories flashed before my eyes. The 5 men in shades. One of them telling me that grandma died, and unsheathing his knife. Me, breaking out of the window in reflex, and running away.
They wanted to kill me like they killed her, slowly and painfully. I ended up in the less populated area of the city, and hid inside a TV box. I had to compose myself not to scream when I heard their footsteps, but then they drove away, exasperated. My survival instincts took over, searching from one trashcan to another for food. An old woman, who turned out to be a teacher here, found me inside the TV box, suffering from dehydration and a bit of food poisoning. She took me in and brought me to this... Base, you can say.
"Yeah, yeah she was." I sighed.
“How old are you?” She asked, seeing my eyes welling up of tears, probably afraid I was going to break down and cry.
“Nine years, two months, and twelve days old.” I replied, sniffling, looking at the calendar hung on the wall. The woman’s eyes widened, probably surprised that I was not seven as I looked, but smiled, and quickly wrote it down. Her handwriting was messy, ink spluttering all over the thin white paper and soaking into the next page.
“Stupid pen.” She muttered. “I'd better buy a new one soon. Now child, you will, hopefully, find your power here, soon. Let me get you into your room. Come."
We walked towards the wooden door in the back of the room, and the general opened the door. It creaked open, revealing a dark hallway. The general placed her right foot onto the floor, and from the end of the hallway emerged a bright light, creeping onto us. It was soon perfectly lit, and I could see clearly through it. The tunnel was covered in mirrors, its glass floor lit with bright white lightbulbs.
Is this even safe? I wondered, frightened.
"Don't be scared. This is perfectly safe." She told me. I blushed, realizing that I had just said my thought out loud.
Her stilettos made loud clopping noises as they hit the glass floor, which echoed across the hallway. Barefooted, I felt the coldness from the glass creeping up onto my feet, but I was used to it from all the years hiding into the streets. Walking next to her, I noticed a long, thin line, a bit paler than the rest of her skin, stretching all the way from her snub nose onto her right cheek. As if knowing what I thought, she looked at me and said, "Humans, those stupid, selfish bast-I mean idiots, attacked this base in 1999. One of them managed to slit my face with a dagger before I killed him-or was it a her? In 2001, we developed a technology to make this base invisible with the naked eye, making them think that we had been burnt down to ashes, and we luckily were able to gather well... Money, to build this place, from our richer members."
"Oh. So why could I see it?" I frowned.
She chuckled. "Not exactly, dear. Our eyes are well, special. That's why we can see what normal human beings can't see. This place was designed to be invisible to the human beings only, and luckily they are stupid enough not to check further. This place to them, is nothing but a desert, with smoke billowing from a hole in the ground. Idiots."
After what seemed like forever, we arrived at an enormous dome, its inner part circled by floors. Each was around 5 metres apart from each other. Its ceiling was what- 60-70 metres from the ground, and its floor was tiled with marble. "Our little dorm is quite fascinating, isn't it?" She smiled, chuckling a little. I nodded, still stunned, and followed behind her as she walked towards the elevator. She pressed some buttons on the panel right next to it, and the elevator let out a loud ding as its door opened. We stepped inside the cylinder, and it went up at such a speed that I fell down on the floor. The general just stood there, smiling. "I have seen worse." She chuckled a bit. Stopping violently, the door opened with another ding, and I stepped out, feeling nauseous, my head aching like hell. Wait. Did she just grow another head? And... And... There are two lifts... And...
"This is your room key. Your roommates will be there in a few hours. You are free from lessons for today, and you will find clothing inside the wooden wardrobe in the corner of the room. There are three sections in it, and your clothing is in the right. Do not take the clothing in the middle or the left. They belong to AnnaLynne and Chloe. Bye now." She smiled. She stepped back and evaporated into thin air, leaving a gust of wind behind.
I gazed at the golden key in my hand, and walked towards the room, warmth creeping up onto my feet from the soft carpet.
"329." I whispered, looking at the numbers on the wall. I put the key into the keyhole and opened the door. It creaked open, revealing a dark