*You can read episode one HERE.
The Amberly Chronicles:
Episode Two: Waking Up.
Blurred images swirl around me. I catch a glimpse of blonde hair, hear laughter. The wisp of a dark hand brushes my cheek and then flits away. Faceless brown eyes pierce mine. A buzz of unintelligible murmuring fills my ears. I reach out, trying to grab one of the images. The colours slip through my fingers like sand.
Everything starts to vibrate and the images are sucked into darkness.
“Hey! Wake up!”
The voice is loud and bounces inside my head. I jolt awake. A girl hovers above me, all big brown eyes. Her hands drop from my shoulders and she straightens. I suck in a breath and sit up. I’m in a strange bed. I take in my surroundings in a quick sweep. No visible windows and doors, same grey swirling walls. There is an identical single bed across from the one I’m in. A small square table sits near the far wall, two chairs tucked beneath it.
The girl who woke me sits on her bed, legs crossed. She has shoulder length brown hair and brown skin. I’m guessing she is Filipino. She is wearing grey cotton pants and a loose, long sleeve, grey cotton top, and grey socks. I look down; I’m wearing the same thing. What’s with all the grey?
Who the hell dressed me? A knot of anxiety forms in my stomach, and I shiver at the thought of somebody changing me while I was asleep.
“Do you know where we are?” I ask the girl.
She shakes her head. “I was going to ask you the same thing.”
She has an Australian accent. I remember I’m from Australia…but nothing else.
I swallow and realise I’m thirsty. “Where were you before this?”
“In a room like this one, but with no furniture. You?”
“Same. Do you know how long I was asleep?”
She shakes her head. “I woke up just before you.”
“Do you remember anything? Who took you? Where you’re from?”
She shakes her head again. “Just waking up in that room.”
My heart sinks. I must have been asleep for a while because I’m busting to go to the toilet.
I shove the blanket off and stand, my eyes going to the roof. I squint, but I don’t see a man hole sized square like I did in the other room.
“What are you looking at?” the girl asks.
“A way out. Help me look.”
She slides off the bed and I drop to my knees. She gets down beside me. I push on the floor, going right under the bed, but it’s completely smooth. I get to my feet and push against the wall. The other girl pushes against the wall on her side. We move across the surface, pushing against every inch. We see it at the same time: a door behind the table. There is no handle. I push. It doesn’t move. I slip my fingertips into the thin crack and pull, but it doesn’t budge.
I let out a frustrated scream. “Why won’t you just open!”
The door slides into the wall with a whoosh, making me and the other girl jump. My heart jolts for the briefest second at the thought of freedom, before it plummets to my toes. It’s a bathroom. A glaringly white bathroom – windowless of course.
“Do you need to go?” I offer.
She nods and slips past me and I cross my legs because now that I’ve seen a toilet I’ve hit desperation level.
“Um…close.” The girl says, and the door slides shut.
She’s not more than a few minutes but it feels like hours. She gives me a sheepish smile as she passes me.
“Close,” I tell the door as I walk in.
After relieving myself, I go to the basin to wash my hands. It is freestanding and there’s no mirror. The faucet is silver and has two tiers. I haven’t seen anything like it before. I put my hand under one and soap comes out, water comes out of the other.
My mouth tastes disgusting. I cup my hands and scoop up some water. “I wish I had some toothpaste,” I mumble. A thin row of tiles zooms out of the wall, revealing a hidden draw. There are two white toothbrushes lying inside. I pick one up.
I tell the door to open and see the girl sitting on her bed. “There are toothbrushes here,” I tell her.
She comes and stands beside me. “Where do you think the toothpaste is?”
A thin metal pipe comes out of the wall. I place my toothbrush under it and a line of white toothpaste covers the bristles.
“That’s pretty swick,” the other girl says, placing her toothbrush under it. It slips back into the wall.
I feel a little awkward brushing my teeth next to a stranger and avoid looking at her. She finishes first and goes back to her bed. I don’t know if it would be rude or not to close the door. I really want to though, want a minute to myself to think. I quickly rinse and put my toothbrush back. As I turn, I bump the basin and hear a dull thud. I reach into the folds of my shirt. There is a pocket, and inside the pocket is something hard. I pull it out. My heart picks up at the sight of the chocolate bar, my stomach grumbling loudly.
I peer through the doorway. The other girl isn’t watching me. I’m so hungry and one chocolate bar isn’t going to fill me up, let alone half a one. But I should share it. She’s got to be hungry too, right? But what if she has a chocolate bar and hasn’t shared it with me?
But if she had a chocolate bar and I didn’t I’d want her to share.
I walk out, holding it up. “Look what I found.”
Her eyes go to the chocolate bar and she glides off the bed. “Is that…?”
“I found it in my pocket.”
She frantically searches the folds of her shirt but there is nothing in them. Her face drops. “So only you have one.”
“We can share,” I say, and she perks up.
I start to unwrap it. “Wait,” she says. “What if it’s poisoned or something?”
“What, someone put us in this room just to poison us? I don’t think so.”
She nods, and I break it in half, handing her a piece. She mustn’t be too worried about it killing her because she shoves it straight into her mouth. So do I. I’m too hungry to care if it’s poisoned or not. Boy it tastes good, even mixed with toothpaste, but it’s gone too quick and my stomach grumbles loudly for more.
We sit on our beds because there isn’t much else to do.
The other girl lies on her side and stretches her leg straight up.
“Are you a dancer or something?” I ask.
“Yeah I am.” Her eyes grow wide and she catapults up. “I am. I am a dancer! I love dancing, I dance all the time.” She puts her hand over her mouth and then removes it to talk again. “My name is Tamara, I’m 15. My birthday is May 28th.”
I push off the wall, my own eyes wide. “My name is Amberly, I’m 17. My birthday is November 26.” It feels so good to remember.
Tamara bounces on the spot. “I live in Perth!”
I grin at her. “I live in Sydney. My favourite colour is blue.”
“My favourite colour is purple!” She squeals.
“I love reading and movies.” The smile slips from my face. The thrill of remembering is replaced with the mourning of forgetting, because even though I remember that I love movies and watch them all the time, I know I used to watch them with someone, someone important to me.
Someone I can’t remember.
Welcome Doctor Psknah Tarah Soun.
-Computer open files 9009 and 9010.
File 9870-631-9009 open. File 9870-631-9010 open.
-Earth date is June twenty sixth, twenty twenty five.
-Time is ten hundred hours.
-Current Status: stage two: duel occupancy chamber.
-9010 is first to awaken. She is quick to wake 9009. Both are curious if the other remember who they are, how they got here, and where they have been, which is conclusive with other test subjects.
-They search for a way out, also conclusive with other test subjects.
-They find the bathroom and basic hygiene levels are practiced by both females.
– 9009 found the Earth chocolate bar placed in her folded upper covering. Though she was hungry, she shared said chocolate bar. She registered a 9 on the 12 point scale, which is the top score any Earthling has reached, and is conclusive with 25% of the test subjects.
-First signs of memory have returned in both 9009 and 9010. Both remember their name, age, and birthdate. They have also associated with having a favourite colour, which is conclusive with 100% of test subjects.
-9009 has indicated preference for what the Earthlings refer to as reading and movies.
-9010 has indicated to have what is known on Earth as a talent, specifically dancing.
-9009 is yet to indicate a talent.
-9009’s fear levels have dropped from 9 to a 6 on the 10 point scale. 9010 dropped from 10 to a 7.5.
-Computer save all data to files 9009 and 9010.
Data saved to file 9870-631-9009. Data saved to file 9870-631-9010.
-Computer initiate stage three.
©Rochelle Sharpe 2014.