[3] Sage

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Dedicated to the above user because they are literally like the real-life version of Sage (except weirder, if that's possible).

I passed out as the rocket took off. Maybe from the change in air pressure, maybe because of the Voice. All I know is that one second, I'm laughing like the maniac that I am, and the next, I'm waking up in outer space.

There is one tiny window in the wall of the rocket ship, between Jake's and Nicole's seats. When the rocket turns slightly, I can see Earth through it, drifting away. It is odd, seeing the planet on which my entire life had changed...reduced to a tiny blue and green marble in the middle of oblivion.

"So you're coming with us, then?" I ask the lady next to me idly, the Voice resting for now. "To Mars?"

"Yes. I'll be returning to Earth after a few months, though."

That makes sense. She surely has a life outside of caring for insane teenagers. A family, or at least someone who loves her. On Mars, there are only scientists, astronauts, and now, apparently, juvenile delinquents.

"Who's going to be taking care of us?" asks Xavier.

"Androids and robots, mostly," the woman replies.

"What's your name?" I ask next. I can't tell if this is the Voice or not, but if it is my mental roommate, I, too am curious.

"Vivian," she replies after a moment of hesitation.

"That's a pretty name," Xavier murmurs, still trembling from the takeoff. He looks pale and sickly, much different from how he looked back on Earth.

"Did you puke?" I ask him sympathetically. Now this is the Voice for certain.

"What's it to you?" he snaps.

"I'll take that as a yes," I reply cheekily. Then, I turn my attention back to Vivian. "Hey, how long is this trip gonna take?"

"The trip to Mars is about five to six months long. You will not be returning to Earth," Vivian explains. A shiver of fear runs through me at her final sentence and unfortunately, Jake notices.

"Scared of Mars?" he asks, sneering.

"Did you know that bulldogs - an ancient dog breed - couldn't give birth naturally?" I respond, refusing to rise to the bait. "Every single puppy had to be cut out of the mothers because they were bred to have big heads, but skinny pelvises. Not a good combo."

Jake turns to Vivian, looking helpless. "How can you even think we're near the same level as this girl? She's absolutely insane! And she murdered over a hundred people with common household objects! At least the rest of us have some sort of conscience - have regrets - "

"I don't!" Deirdre pipes up cheerily.

"I regret nothing," Xavier says darkly, "except being caught."

"Excuse me, Drac?" I ask politely towards the muzzled girl. "What about you? Do you regret your crimes?"

Nichole hesitates before shaking her head slowly.

"See? It's really you who can't live up to our expectations," I counter cheerily to Jake. "Oh, if only you had been a little more bloodthirsty..."

Jake's jaw clenches in an obvious attempt to stay calm and he looks away. I begin to feel guilty until the Voice grabs a tighter hold.

"Oh, I'm sorry, did I strike a nerve?" I giggle. "Well, I mean, I've struck a lot of nerves, but no one's ever walked out of it alive!"

"It's time to stop," Vivian murmurs warningly.

"You don't call the shots," I sing.

"And who does?"

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