That was the very first thing I heard; the sound of beeping. Although my ears had mysteriously muffled the repetitive noise, it was still audible, and no matter what, it seemed like it was endless.
Opening my eyes, I found myself surrounded in pure blackness. The only light that shined was in my face, but even then, strange tubes still tried to cover what was left.
I felt numb and cold, my eyes barely adjusting to the darkness. It felt like it had been a long time since I’ve even moved, my entire body stiff as stone. I could barely hear my own breathing, leaving me to question if I was even alive or still in deep slumber.
I was so confused, my feelings mixed as I kept looking around my limited space.
Where was I? How did I get here? And why am I in something so…black?
Moving my arms, I grabbed the sides of the opening with both of my hands, pushing it out of the way to let more light in. As my eyes adjusted again, I saw what appeared to be a table, followed by some strange machines that were hooked up to the same tubes that were coming in through the opening. More things came into view the longer I stared at the wall, such as silver tools and a door to the left of the opposite wall.
Taking a deep breath, I pulled myself straight up, the darkness fading away to reveal a white room. My mind began to think as I kept looking at my surroundings, my eyes unblurring and letting me see everything without looking like spots to me.
Where am I? I thought to myself. What happened to me that caused me to be so…confused and…unsure of what’s going on around me?
Realizing that I had a clear mask over my face, I let go of the black bag that I just came out of and took it off, letting myself breathe in some fresh air instead of whatever was coming from the mask. As I set it down, I then noticed a clear tube on my right arm, feeling something drip into my bloodstream.
My instincts immediately kicked in as I grabbed the tube and gently pulled on it, watching as a tiny needle came out of my arm and—therefore—letting blood slowly come out of it as well. Turning my head away from the sickening sight, I then blindy grabbed something off of the nearest table, putting the supposed bandage over the bleeding spot. Looking back at the spot, I saw that I indeed put the right bandage over it, sighing in relief.
Now what do I do? I asked myself, turning my head to see a pile of clothes laying on a desk. Looking downwards, I began to realize that I was in nothing but cloth underwear and a two-piece hospital gown, further growing my confusion.
Wait a minute….hold on…
Was I in a…hospital?
Probably, but…what state was I in? And why—out of all the other possibilities—was I in a hospital inside of a black bag and hooked up to multiple machines?
Gaining my balance, I sat up and put my feet on the cold floor, standing up for the first time in what felt like years. As I slowly walked to the desk, I noticed an open folder with the words “Experiment #7094” written in black ink on it. Curious, I picked it up, opening the folder. The following words were written in it in the same ink as the folder name:
Past Diagnosis: PTSD, Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), Haphephobia and Insomnia
Note: will be put in New York’s Training Center For Experimented Humanoids”
I found myself…perplexed…by this new information. My mind began to think harder as I stared at the words that were in front of me, my confusion growing even more than before.
What did they mean by putting me in a “training center” for “experimented humanoids”? And why was I going there anyway? It’s not like a danger to humans, demons or any other living species…right?
Shaking the thoughts from my head, I changed my clothes, taking off the two-piece gown and putting on a t-shirt and some jean shorts, feeling more comfortable than I was when I was wearing that gown. Throwing the other clothes into the black bag, I looked straight at the door, wondering if I could actually make it out of here by walking out or not.
Then, I had an idea. Facing the desk again, I looked through the draws to—shockingly—find some white hair dye, along with a pair of scissors.
Aha! I thought, grabbing the scissors and a nearby trash can before cutting my hair off up to where my neck connected to my head, watching the now loose hair fall into the can. I then dyed my entire hair white, hiding the naturally brown color underneath the new snowy color. Finally, I used the scissors again to make bangs long enough to hide my eyes, throwing the box of white dye away and putting the scissors back up where they belong and closing the draw quietly to not cause any suspicious activity that’ll make me get caught.
Looking back at the door, I walked over to it, grabbing the handle. I gulped, fear tightening my already tight throat as I opened the door and began to walk to the hospital exit, keeping my eye contact to a severe low so I wouldn’t be dragged back into this place.
Walking outside and out of the exit, the first thing I saw was tiny little stars dotted and lighting up the black sky, followed by the glowing moon that hovered far above me. Relief swept over me as I stared into the sky, my entire body now temporarily motionless.
So now that I’m out, where do I go now? I thought to myself, walking over to a nearby bench and sitting down on it, still thinking. I don’t have any money, so I guess I’ll be living in the streets starving and restless…but do I really want to do that when a search team will be coming after me in the next few days? Or should I go to the forest and hope that the animals that live there will actually protect me from those who were about to take me to that training center?
I sighed, looking around to see cars and people passing by me without a care, which left me both fearful and confused of the world around me. Standing up, I walked around and across an unfamiliar street, immediately stopping when I saw bloody shards of glass on the ground. My eyes widened as I stared at the glass, my heart banging even faster than before.
Then, unexpectedly, my mind gave me a familiar image; a car crashing into another, with glass shards and blood spilling all over the place. I then saw through the image an ambulance, followed by several police cars.
I stood there, petrified. Holding my head with both of my hands, I sat down on my knees, letting out tears of pure trauma. I didn’t even care if anyone saw me as I kept crying, my hands now hiding my face.
Was I actually alive?! Why did someone mercilessly kill me? And why was I in the hospital instead of being in a wooden casket sixteen feet underneath the ground and in my grave waiting for the Afterlife to take my spirit—my new form—into its place of peace and freedom?
Those questions flooded my head as I kept crying, my wails of fear and terror quiet. The more I thought about it, the more these thoughts and images—which were nothing more than PTSD flashbacks—filled my mind so much that I lost all sense of reality. It was only until a police car passing me that I finally snapped out of it, still petrified.
My throat tightened up even more as I tried to speak, my vocal cords frozen and useless. Silent, I rose up to my feet, looking behind me to see an empty road in front of me. The sound of the muffled beeping filled my ears again, as if I was almost going completely deaf from that noise. But that didn’t stop me as I continued to walk on the side of the road, watching carefully for any passing cars that might catch me. The more I walked, the less I felt fearful as dawn began to rise, the sun gleaming over the trees.
Finally, after a long while, I made it to a city filled with bright lights and big crowds. Looking around, I began to walk around the city, studying the people, buildings and vehicles very closely while trying to keep my identity hidden. Luckily, life was still on my side as I passed through crowd after crowd, the people around me ignoring me as if I was just one of them.
But then, my cover was suddenly blown..
“There he is!” I heard a cop speak as he rushed towards me, two more officers following him. “That’s Experiment #7094! Let’s get him!”
Terrified, I immediately began to run straight into the back alley, trying to outrun them. My luck ran out, however, when I tripped on a box, falling over onto the pavement hard. When I tried to get back up, they were already surrounding me, leaving me defenseless.
I stared at them, frozen in place. As they got closer to me, I finally grew the courage to stand up on my feet again, running away before any of them could grab me. I kept running and running, my ears still filled with the beeps that I keep hearing. As I ran, my nose caught the heavy smell of blood, making me almost gag because of it. But even though I was almost sick to my stomach from the smell, I still kept running, surprisingly outrunning the officers.
My breath hitched in my throat as I finally stopped running, hyperventilating. Looking around, I saw no signs of them. But even if they were gone, they’d still tell people that I was on the loose, worsening my fears of being dragged back to the hospital only to be brought to the training center and brainwashed by them
What was I gonna do? How would I survive when many people already know that I’ve escaped and are after me like predators after prey?
Those thoughts flew out of my mind, though, when I came across someone….
It was a man wearing a white shirt, a black coat, jeans and a red bowtie. His hair was like gold, and his eyes were as gray as dark clouds.
The moment he looked at me, I felt like I was dead. But when he began to speak, my feelings suddenly…changed.
“Cadmean?” The man spoke in a low and quiet voice, looking at me. “You’re finally awake! I thought I’d never get to see you again!”
I felt so…confused by his words. It was if he knew me just by my looks, but even then, he still made me rethink my entire day—my entire life the moment I awoke—all over again.
“I’m…Cadmean?…” My voice finally let me speak as I said those words, my tone weak and raspy, as if it’s been damaged. “But…how do you know me?…who are you?”
The man stared at me for a few silent moments, then began to answer. “My name is Zeek.” He said, lowering his voice even more. “And you are Cadmean Hyku Ambrosia. I know this because I saw you getting reborn for the second time in the Afterlife. And, therefore, I was instructed by those same people who resurrected you to watch over you and protect you until they can find a more…permanent…replacement.”
I stared at Zeek, stunned, my mind now blank. I couldn’t even respond as his words filled my head, my voice refreezing and going useless again.
I was…reborn…for the second time? But…why? And when was the first time the people in the Afterlife resurrected me?
Zeek then walked up to my side, sighing. “You don’t remember anything, do you?” He asked, looking at my blank and unreadable expression.
I nodded subconsciously in response, silent, my throat tightening up again.
Zeek stared at me, then gestured over to a silver car, looking at it. “Come in the car with me. And don’t worry, you’ll be safe, I promise.” He reassured me, walking over to the car.
Following him, I sat down in the passenger seat of the car, the windows not see through from the outside so that I couldn’t be spotted. As Zeek started to drive, I buckled myself in, looking out to see trees and cars passing by.
As we drove out of the city, I began to think about the new information that I was just given, my mind slowly working on the possibilities of this happening again.
So my name is…Cadmean Hyku Ambrosia? I thought. And I was…reborn twice? Wait….Cadmean means “fox”, and Ambrosia not only means “immortal”, but is also the stuff that gods eat. So that means I might be a resurrection of a…Fox God?
Those thoughts flooded my head as Zeek suddenly came to a stop, parking the car in front of a modernized house with high-tech gadgets. He then stepped out of the car, opening my door. “There’s someone you need to see.” He said. “This person has been missing you since the day you died…”
Getting up from the car, I followed Zeek into the house. I suddenly stopped when a man in a suit and wearing a bloody blindfold over his eyes came into view, my memories now finally working. As I stared at the stranger, I began to cry, tears streaming down my face.
This was my…mother. But she was now a…he..
“Hyku?” My mother—or father, I should say—spoke, running up to me and hugging me tightly. “It’s me, your father. Karmin’s here.”
I hugged him back, tears still falling down my face as I sobbed into his suit. We stayed like this for a few minutes until we finally let go of each other.
“How can you sense me when you’re…blind?” I asked, wiping the tears from my eyes.
Karmin sighed, smiling. “I have a sixth sense that allows me to sense where you are.” He explained. “But that’s not important right now. What’s important now is that you’re safe. I’m so glad to have you back.”
I smiled as well, finally able to let my true feelings shine. Zeek then left, waving goodbye before driving away.
The new few weeks were peaceful. Karmin and I spent a lot of time together. And, surprisingly, I was never caught. News about me was so low it’s like they either gave up or forgot.
I was finally at peace now. And I was finally treated like I wanted to be treated like: a human being.