I wasn't sure why they called us The Broken, but what I did know for sure was that we were different from the other human inhabitants of the planet, not physically, but in spirit. We were the third generation with a huge (some would say a cursed) destiny. Poseidon is the planet on which we... read more (warning: may contain spoilers)
I wasn't sure why they called us The Broken, but what I did know for sure was that we were different from the other human inhabitants of the planet, not physically, but in spirit. We were the third generation with a huge (some would say a cursed) destiny. Poseidon is the planet on which we resided. It was set in a milky way much like our home planet – Earth. Global warming, war and evil undertakings were said to have contributed to Earth’s destruction. So it was said. Did I believe it? No. I believed that there was a lot more to the story behind our origins. I could feel it in the cold burn of my legs sometimes and I could see it on the faces of my peers as we walked down the hallways of our school. A haunting feeling stared back at me as I looked upon my reflection in the monitor every morning. The color of my irises had changed twice since I had hit puberty. Was that normal? No way. I often wondered why I was the only one who had experienced that strange side effect of puberty. But there was something else, something I kept secret from the Council – from Kim – that might have confirmed my suspicions. Perched high upon a tower among the ancient ruins that overlooked the lake bordering the northern base of Mount Inja, I familiarized myself with the bright white glow over the surface of the navy lake as it reflected the moons’ ghostly beauty. A burst of wind suddenly made its way through the canyon and over the lake, curling up against the tower and playfully touching our faces. The smell of the cold stale air kept reminding me of the stagnant weather we had been experiencing on Poseidon. Below my dangling feet, small waves crashed against the white stone of the tower echoing through the canyon. Sam and I escaped to that isolated part of the island often and I doubted anyone else knew of its existence. The chilly breeze slicing through the late afternoon air licked at Sam’s ginger locks, fanning them over her gorgeous face as she lay spread out on the rooftop of the ruins. Her ivory skin, pale in contrast to her dark coat, looked strikingly beautiful against the bleak background of yet another late winter afternoon.
Gray clouds rose above the canyon intensifying the purple sky that was quickly darkening into early evening. I smiled to myself – breaking rules was part who I had become; I would try anything just to feel alive, to feel free from a dying planet – a dying race. The water beneath me shimmered, while the mountain appeared pale green in the dim light. I imagined for a moment that I was stuck in a beautiful painting. Once more, I glanced at Sam. Her fiery locks still rested lightly across her face. With her eyes shut and her long, dark, thick lashes sweeping over the top of her rosy cheeks, she looked just like a doll. Her coat was
tucked tightly into the nape of her neck to ward of the cold, and a faint smile started curling up at the edges of her mouth. Not a care in the world, I thought to myself as I looked thoughtfully at Sam snuggled in silent reverie. As I turned my gaze back to the distant horizon where nightfall was quickly creeping toward us from over Mount Inja, a shimmer of an early star set against the amethyst sky caught my eye – so silver, so sparkling, so high and so serene that I could only dream of ever reaching it. I closed my eyes tight, fighting the pang in my chest, and I wished for that star to fall down on me, to grant me my wish of changing my life forever. I wished it would close the emptiness within my chest and fill it with the kind of peace that would make me the person I was meant to be, not the girl I was. The girl who was constantly poked fun at, never once left alone to just be herself; the girl who envied everyone else, and the girl with the huge inheritance which meant nothing to her. I felt belittled every day because of it. I looked harder into the glimmer of the star and wished to be envied, just once.
“Fall down on me,” I whispered to the star.
“Hmm?” Sam murmured.
“Oh, just thinking out loud again,” I replied.
My legs dangled over the edge of the roof, my petite white feet contrasting with the dark, vast body of water below. I could hardly feel my toes anymore. Sam suddenly sat up and yawned loudly, stretching her long arms over her head. Her eyes flung open and she yelled. “Oh, crap!”
Her raspy voice boomed throughout the valley, scaring the birds who flew away with a flutter of wings to their cozy nests between the bleak branches, squawking toward the sky. Hurriedly, she reached for her shoes, stumbling slightly forward when she jumped up to extend an arm toward me. “Come on! We’re late!” she exclaimed, suddenly out of breath as if she had just swum a few laps in the cold lake. I grinned at her, grabbed my shoes from beside me, stuffed them into the deep pockets of my coat and rose with a hard tug from Sam. I glanced over the scenery one last time while Sam carefully made her way down the tower, allowing her feet to rest on the jagged edges of the broken stone statues that hung on the cornices of what used to be an arched window. Dropping down the side of the tower, my hands grabbing the ledge and carefully swinging them into the opening, I landed gracefully inside the shadows of the tower in a low crouch. I heaved a deep breath of relief. It was much warmer inside and away from the nasty breeze. I stood proud after my almost perfect dismount – I was a gymnast every chance I got. Sam cleared her throat, and from her rigid outline, I could tell she was annoyed. Her hands resting on her hips, she slowly tapped one foot against the hard stone floor, the tapping echoing loudly through the emptiness. Staring down at the floor, I could hardly make out the patterns of the ancient symbols etched into the white stone.
“You’re going to see your ass one day, and then I’m going to have to tell you, I told you so,” she said bluntly.
I smiled at her, pulled my shoes on and started for the narrow stairs that spiraled down into the tunnel below.
“Oh no, you don’t!” Sam’s voice boomed from behind me as she pushed me aside playfully while she made her way past. She had longer legs and strides than I had, and ran with a kind of grace that made running look incredibly natural. I, on the other hand, was a much better swimmer. I realized that it must have been later than we had originally thought as the tunnel seemed darker than on any of the other afternoons on which we had fled to that place. The faint light toward the entrance of the tunnel was barely visible as we crawled through. Sam giggled nervously as we hurried down the narrow passage on all fours. The cold floor was hard and hurt my bony knees.
“What’s so damn funny?” I asked her, almost panicking that some - one would notice we had disregarded our curfew yet again.
We slowed down as we rose to a low crouch, the tunnel opening up to a small entrance. Sam held out her hands, her fingers laced together. I gingerly slid a foot into them as she pushed me up toward the small tunnel entrance at the base of a huge silver-wood tree. We had tally found the entrance while playing hide and seek when we were kids. It had become our secret hideaway since then. We visited our hideaway almost every afternoon to get away from the severity that school held for me. I couldn't help but wonder if I would still have been treated as an outsider, had my grandfather not been our founder. I thought they all held a grudge against me for our existence. Experiments – that’s all we were to the Council. As I pulled Sam through from the other side, a faint light from behind her caused a long shadow to hide her expression, but by the easy set of her shoulders, I could tell that she was still smiling.
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