I wake in a room with bars. A jail cell?
Groggy, I rise from my bed and have a look around. White walls. White floors.
What am I doing here?
The sound of grinding metal near the doorway infiltrates my ears and I hurry to cover them. In walks a girl, pretty and petite, with a peculiar sparkle in her eyes. Stella. "How are you, Aurora?"
I'm hit with a full-on migraine. "Well I thought I was good—ah, my head hurts. Damn," I press my hands to my forehead in hopes of alleviating some of the pain. "Wow, do you have any medicine I can take?" The throbbing shifts to behind my eyes, so I squeeze them shut, hoping the pain will let up.
She merely smiles. "Perhaps you're just hungry. If the pain doesn't subside soon, I most certainly can offer you some relief for your headache."
I sit back down on the mattress and forcefully press my hands against my face, thinking the pressure would help somewhat. "I don't think it's hunger."
She shrugs at my rebuttal. "Regardless of the cause, the pain will go soon enough, I promise."
Within seconds of her reassurance, the pain in my head dissipates as if she were in control of it. Out of the blue, I pick my head up and ask her, "Where's Brink?"
Another shrug. "Not sure. Probably in his room. I'll be sure he visits today. However unfortunately, it may be once you have fallen asleep."
I frown and cross my arms. "Doesn't he want to see me?"
Stella puts her fingers to her lips. "Oh, um, I'm sure he does. Yes. He's just...going to be busy today, is all," she explicates vaguely, an uneasy chuckle escaping her mouth.
Is she covering up for something? What's going on?
"Stella, why am I in a cell? I find the idea of waking up in it...strange. If I remember right, I had a room with red walls...flowers...and now you're saying Brink's too busy to visit me. I don't understand what's happening, here. Did I do something wrong?" I shake my head, attempting to clear my delusional thoughts.
She glances to her right as if searching for words to say back to me. "Your room is being slightly renovated, Aurora. Nothing major." Her hands gracefully land on her hips. "Be excited! Don't you love getting new things?" The instantaneous switch in her mood only confuses me more.
I raise one eyebrow, not buying a word. If they are simply renovating my room, I should still be able to freely roam the area like everyone else. Why lock me up? Perhaps I'll find Brink in his office and talk to him about it and see if he has a more elaborate explanation to give me.
Scratching the side of my head, I ask. "Well, are you going to let me out of here?"
Stella hesitates before replying. "Unfortunately, since it's Brink's Sector, only he can release you."
I sense my grimace sinking lower as I recall the regulations. "I thought these rooms were locked with a master key, which you and the other Five carry?"
She takes a step forward. "Yes, however, mine is with him. He...took it."
She shakes her head slowly. "No, Aurora. I'm telling the truth. Brink knows we're friends--and we are. He also knows that I would release you if I could. Since this is his Sector, he wants to keep the ability to do so solely in his hands."
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OTHERS (Formerly The Scarlet Effect)Science Fiction
The pandemic was just the beginning. After an unknown virus sweeps across the globe, Aurora and two other survivors seek out safety in a bomb shelter with enough supplies to last a few years. Just as she starts to adapt to her new way of life, she i...