Cold. It soaks up through my bare feet and into my veins, turning them to ice. I’ve never been cold before, but I know what it is. When a cold needle touches my skin or the feel of an ice cube in my mouth. (I stole one when I snuck out of my room once).

A deep breath, and I take a tiny step. For the first time since The Incident I’m free.

I don’t remember much about my life before The Incident. For one thing, I calculate that I was only about three years old, and for another, there was so much trauma.

I do remember the deep voice of my Father, as soothing as the sound of fading footsteps. I remember the sweet smell of my mother, although I don't know shat the smell was. I pull the thin bed sheet tighter around me and turn the corner of the large building. The moon is hidden behind some clouds, and I dart across the long clearing as fast as my legs can carry me.

The gate swings on silent hinges. I study it with surprise. Was there really no security on it? It appeared as if that were the case. Maybe they just expected me to be too scared to run away. I had been…for eleven years. I look up at the building just as the moon comes out.

It’s beautiful, nothing like the inside. I sigh and continue on. Where am I supposed to go? I have no idea where I came from. I only have one clue. I remember my first name. Kailey.

I walk along the side of the road underneath the trees. It’s strange, but when I see them, trees, the road, the moon, I remember what they are.

A car slows down as it passes me and then speeds up.

I wonder how I look. I know my face is scarred and my hair only grows in clumps. I know I’m wrapped in a simple bed sheet. I continue on until another car passes me. It flips on some lights of bright colors. I stop, confused.

“Do you need help miss?”

I shrug. “I suppose.”

I'm dubious. Will he return me to the crazy doctors who've been experimenting on me?

I’m going to have to risk it, otherwise I'll have no idea what to do. This guy will be as good as any.


I suddenly don't know what to say.

He gives me an artificial smile. Somehow, though it's still friendly.

“Come on, I'll take you to the station.”

I shake my head. There is no way I'm getting in some stranger's car. Memories flash through my head.

“Come see the puppies…”

He sighs. “Look, I'm not going to hurt you.”

“They’re cute. They're just in the back.”

I shift but stay where I am. He sighs again.

“What if I just drive slow? You can follow my car,” he proposes.

After I think it over, I agree.

The man takes me to what I assume is the station. I never learned to read. I know how to speak well, I think because I listened to conversations.

The doctors always spoke as if I did not exist.

I enter the station in some trepidation.

It seems nice with a dim appearance and the smell of something good…I can't seem to remember what, although the smell is familiar.

The man tells me to sit on a chair and a lady comes in.

I never knew someone could ask so many questions. I learned some new words though.

The doctors, the policeman said would have to be investigated and my family looked for.

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