“Are you better now, Seven?” Johan asked, helping the boy sit up. Seven nodded. He had calmed down. The whole experience shook him up, but now that he had a chance to breathe, he started to become excited.
That was flying, right? He could fly! How freaking cool was that?
“Can you do that again? Can you float? I mean, you came down just fine. Would you be alright trying again, or are you going to panic?”
“I’ll try, but I don’t know how.”
“Try doing the opposite of what we did to get you down. Think that you’re really light, lighter than air.” Seven tried. He tried really hard, scrunching up his eyebrows in an effort to concentrate. At first, nothing seemed to be happening. A long couple of minutes passed, and Seven began to give up. Suddenly, Johan burst out into laughter, and it startled Seven. Because of that, his legs uncrossed, knocking against the floor. He started floating towards the ceiling. Johan laughed again.
“Jo! Help me get down!” Johan reached up and pulled on one of Seven’s legs. He set him hovering just above the bed with a bemused grin.
“Why’d you laugh?”
“Your expression was funny. You were concentrating so hard you didn’t notice you had already started floating. It wasn’t much, just a few inches off the ground, but that made it that much more hilarious,” Johan chuckled.
“It wasn’t that funny,” Seven muttered under his breath.
“Seven! Do you know what this means? It wasn’t a one time occurrence! It opens up so many possibilities! I have to get started on this once a way. We need to come up with ways of testing this. Is it only floating, or can you actually move through the air? How long does it last for? How high? Does it have to do with gravity or is it something else? What mechanics makes it work? There’s so much to do!” Johan said as he waved his arms about in excitement. He leapt up and exclaimed, “Oh! I have to tell Nero about this. He’ll be ecstatic. Seven, wait here while I tell him.” Seven almost started nodding in response before he realized what Johan said.
“No! Jo! You can’t tell Director Nero!” Seven dropped out of the air and settled hard on the bed.
“What? Why not?”
“You just can’t!” Johan frowned.
“Seven, this is a really important discovery. Nero needs to know about it. You better have a good reason for insisting for me not to tell him. Now, tell me why not.”
“He’ll tell him.”
“That man. He’ll tell that man.”
“Jo! That man can’t know! He’ll kill me! He’ll chop off my head and kill me!” Seven was becoming hysterical once more. He knew in his head that Andan wouldn’t really kill him for having such a power, but his fear of the man had grown to astronomical proportions, so much so that he could no longer think clearly when it came to the sergeant.
If he hadn’t researched the man, he wouldn’t have been quite so afraid of him. After all, it was hard to associate Andan with the electrical experiment when he had been behind a mirror the whole time. But because Seven had watched that video, he knew what the man was capable of, and a deep set fear of the man sprouted within him. Having a man like that within the complex, a man who had complete control over his life, was terrifying.
“Seven! Shut up! Who will kill you? Tell me right this instant.” Johan was beginning to become annoyed. This was the second time in several minutes that he had to deal with a hysterical Seven. It was strange. Why did the boy keep having these outbursts. He never gave so much trouble before.
“It’s Andan. He’ll kill me,” Seven said quietly, hardly breathing at all now. Johan frowned once more. So, that was it. The boy had a phobia of the sergeant now. Not completely unreasonable, but really, was it enough to think the Bach would kill him?
“Don’t be an idiot, Seven. Sergeant Bach would never kill you, and certainly not because he found out you could levitate. That is not a valid reason. Now, be quiet and stay here while I tell Nero.” Johan turned to walk out of the room. Seven made a grab at Johan’s clothes, but he missed.
“No, Jo! Please! Don’t!” Johan shook his head as he walked with the door swooshing close behind him.
Seven sat on his bed in shock. He was devastated, and at that moment he felt very alone. Johan would tell Director Nero, and Director Nero would have no choice but to inform Andan. He didn’t know how, but the man would surely torment him then.
He sat there on the bed for a long time, numb, before finally crawling over to his pillow, which was still on the floor from when he threw it. He gathered it up and wrapped his blanket around himself. He curled up in a corner and cried hot, silent tears.
He was scared. How was he supposed to live when that kind of monster had free access to do what ever he wanted? Seven wasn’t even sure if he wanted to live. Not after the electricity had given him a taste of what was to come. There was no one that would help him.
Or, maybe there was someone who could help him. One person who was crazy enough to rescue him from the pocket of the USCU, crazy enough to snatch him from the jaws of the sadistic Andan Bach. Just maybe, just maybe, that man who was crazy enough to cross borders, sneak people out again, would be crazy enough to come for him. Seven could only hope. He gathered his resolve to live once more, to live just long enough for the Cakeman to take him out of this place.
In desperation, he sent another message to Lex Palming. A more urgent one.
Please. Hurry. I’ll be killed.
End of Chapter 2