"Where's my mother?"
"What?" he asked, looking from Hannah to the empty, white vinyl bed. He entered the room.
"You said she was here."
"She was...," he checked his watch, "two hours ago
"Well, where is she?"
"I don't know?"
"Maybe she woke up and they've taken her somewhere." Hannah said excitedly.
"No, that's impossible; she had at least another four hours of logging off. Look, wait here a minute, I'll be right back."
Scott left, leaving Hannah alone. She searched around; looking for signs her mother had been there. Maybe she's been moved to another room.
He burst back through the door.
"Hannah we have to go. Now!"
"Have you found her?"
"Yes and no, I'll tell you later, but we have to go now. The guards and the team are on their way back in."
"Hannah, you have to do as I say. Things aren't looking good for any of us right now, especially for your mum."
"Hannah, we have to go," urged Tucker, who appeared in the door way. "Please," he mouthed.
She nodded and reluctantly followed Scott out of the room and they hurried down the corridor.
"Zeke, you and Tucker try for the service exit. We'll go back up."
"Hannah, stay safe, I'll see you later." He kissed her on the cheek and then ran off after Zeke.
Hannah and Scott followed down the corridor, Scott limping a little. They went through the final door and Scott turned and pushed it shut, it sealed with a hiss. Hannah reached the stairs first and they started their ascent, Hannah climbed three steps at a time, but Scott took them cautiously, frequently glancing back. One floor up, they heard voices below and froze.
"Complete the initial analysis and let me have a report by nine tomorrow. Briggs isn't going to like to wait on this." A man's voice echoed around the stairwell.
"What about the woman?" A second man's voice could be heard this time.
"Keep her under for another twenty- four hours. Try to focus in on the list and the names on it. Who gave her the list and who she gave it to?
"The list might not be of any relevance, just a simple coincidence?"
"There are no such things as coincidences here. Three names cropping up, two on our watch list and one a little closer to home; I don't think that's a coincidence do you? This information is now Level Ten classified. It goes no further, do you understand?"
They waited for the sound of the door closing again before Scott and Hannah set off up the stairs.
"What were they talking about?" Hannah asked breathlessly, Scott now seeming to forget about his injury, forged ahead at a desperate pace.
"Later, Hannah," he replied effortlessly, his breathing unaltered by the exertion.
A list, what list? Were they even talking about her mum?
"Oh no!" Hannah stopped, placed her hands on her hips and bent over, taking a deep breath as her thoughts seemed to rearrange themselves, like jigsaw puzzle pieces magically assembling themselves.
YOU ARE READING
The NumberedScience Fiction
Imagine the second you're born, a consultant removes you from your mother's grasp and runs a battery of genetic and physiological tests on you. Thirty minutes later they give you a score out of one hundred which denotes your level of perfection. If...