Another Door Opens by Red_Harvey

189 18 3

Beep.

The familiar sound of her identifier signaled entrance into the school.

"Please wait."

Cameron sighed.

Stupid machine. It was always misreading her chip.

She passed her arm over the scanner again.

"Clear." The light on the door changed from red to green, and she stepped over the threshold.

Blue walls. Blue floor. Light blue ceiling. Blue stimulated learning. Everyone knew that.

Everyone like Janet. Janet told her all the secrets, all the good stuff. Janet was the one who showed Cameron how to skip school.

Just go to class. For once, a voice inside her pleaded.

After three rotations of missing lessons, skipping again would be unwise, but the pull was heavy, strong.

On the way to her locker, Cameron passed the inter room. Briefly, she noticed the dozen or so travelers hooked to the machines. They could have been sleeping.

"So peaceful, huh?" Janet nudged her. "What do you think they're dreaming about?"

Cameron smiled. Janet always knew what she was thinking.

"They're not dreaming anything," she replied.

Her best friend hooked her arm in Cameron's, leading her down the hall. "They're certainly not travelling, either. To do that, you actually need to go somewhere!"

Mostly being dragged along, Cameron said, "But they do go somewhere."

Janet shook her head. She stopped Cameron, putting her face so close they were nearly nose to nose.

Over-emotes, Cameron thought.

"The Commons only want you to think that." Janet still had morning respite breath, the sweet smell of fruit puree wafting from her mouth.

"Yeah, yeah." Cameron moved away.

They'd had the conversation before. What concerned Cameron was their route to class. She had no plans on attending, and had already bypassed her locker. By now, she usually hid in the relief room, waiting until class began and the halls emptied. Then, she snuck out of school and further into obscurity. Just like Janet had taught her to do.

Going to class ruined her non-plans.

Non-plans were important. If Cameron varied from her routine, what would she have? Who would she be?

They reached a door marked "Private", and she relaxed. Janet obviously wasn't dragging her to class, and Cameron felt silly for believing her pal could be a traitor.

Before she could ask what they were doing, Janet waved her arm, disabling the particle shield. A dark space beckoned, made even more intriguing by a small light source shining from within.

"C'mon." Once again, Janet grabbed Cameron and tried to pull her into the room.

This time, her eyes rested on the words above the door,

[Private]

and a fear of authority compelled her to lose hold of Janet.

"We're not allowed inside." She checked the hallway, making sure they were alone. They were.

Janet wrinkled her nose, a grin highlighting the sparkle in her brown eyes. "We shouldn't skip class, but we do. Let's go." She pointed at the open doorway.

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