He wasn’t going to make it. He felt it the moment his feet left the air duct. He reached out as far as he could, stretching his limbs to their utmost, but fell just a few centimeters short. His hand brushed the rail as it slipped past his grasp. A spark of electricity ran through his fingers when it did. He felt his stomach drop as he fell.
“Seven!” He heard Lex yell.
Then, the world flipped.
Seven hung in the air for a second before slamming into the cooling unit. It hurt. The railing caught him right in the gut. His stomach crawled up his throat, and he vomited.
“Seven! Are you alright? What happened?”
It took him a second before he could respond. “It went back, I think,” he said hoarsely.
Seven stood in a large field. Wind flowed past him, making the long grasses sway like waves. It was quiet except for the wind. He briefly thought it strange. His whole life there had always been something buzzing in the background. He tried to pull up his blue screen, but nothing happened.
“&%$*#:@,” a sweet voice called out. It was a name, he realized. His own name. Not a number, a real name. If only he could have heard it clearly. He turned towards the voice and saw Alicia standing a ways behind him. Suddenly, he was very little. He cried in delight and ran towards her.
“Mama!” he laughed as he wrapped his short arms around her leg. She chuckled and ruffled his hair before planting a kiss on his head.
“How are you, my little imp? Did you have a good day?”
“It was scary, but Mama’s here, so it’s okay now,” he showed her a toothy grin. (more…)
Director Nero was frustrated. The mass production of Number 7’s serum was taking longer than was planned. Unexpected difficulties continued to crop up one after another. The People’s Army wouldn’t be pleased with the set backs. They were getting more and more annoyed with Pandora as time passed. Even though Pandora’s recent breakthroughs had been significant, especially within the last four years, it wasn’t enough to pacify their growing displeasure.
He looked through the manufacturing statistics. If things went well, it would be three days until the first batch of one hundred was done. The USCU wanted at least a hundred more such batches. It would be difficult, but once they got the first batch out, they would have gotten all the kinks out of the manufacturing line, and the process would then be completely automated.
On the bright side, Number 8, the man they had injected Number 7’s serum into three months ago, continued to be preforming well. His regenerative abilities and his resistance to radiation were both extremely high, proof that the serum worked better than he had hoped.
“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?”
Putting aside his thoughts about the disturbing Andan Bach, Seven stretched his sore muscles. He healed a lot in the time he researched the sergeant. He felt much better. Though stiff and frail, he no longer had the debilitating pain.
It worried Seven that just one experiment reduced him to such a state. If he stayed in Pandora to experience any more of them, he might wind up dead. He had to escape. He had to get as far away from that man as possible. But, to where? Where should he go to be safe?
New Poland. Not the main country, just one of those in the coalition. Somewhere where he wouldn’t stand out, but a country with little ambition, he decided. Nordsland was a viable option. People had fairer skin there. He could probably blend in better. But, could he really travel the some 3,000 miles from the USCU to Nordsland? And, alone at that? No, not likely. Seven bit his lip, worried about what he should do. It was just so risky.