Copyright © 2015 by N.E.ONE
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may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever
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h1=. * YEAR 2033 *
Bloods of atrocity running down the hazy streets were leaving a strange smell in the air. It seeme d like people ran out of the nature and spread all over the world. The fire of the war didn’t only take lives and sweep away the souls. It also left an irreparable emptiness behind. The trace of existence seemed to disappear in ashes. The human population was on the brink of extinction.
Feeding was easy in a way; in another way difficult. It was easy because there were cellars of food left behind from the dead. It was difficult because there were either people who turned into bag of bones or bodies covered with blood everywhere; every meal was turning into a sickening activity.
Uncertainty and poverty were consuming all the emotions people had by swallowing them up. The ones getting away from becoming animals were hiding and colonising. As for the ones fuelling the wars and avoiding its consequences vehemently, justice was seeking for them and enfolding them inch by inch. But now, it was too late for lots of things; maybe for everything.
People, at first, could feel the anxiety wrapped in fear and terror. But in time, these emotions along with their sense of self disappeared. They were running toward ruthless ends; not knowing where they’re headed.
Solitude had never been this palpable. Desolation, which embraced and suffocated people was becoming more and more gruesome. Exasperation and exhaustion enwrapped the brains now. People chose to suppress the idea-generating parts. What about their hearts? Except for a rare few, they froze down their hearts just like the earth. Who knows, maybe it was because of the cruelties they did.
The earth was drowning in silence. The only sound that was echoing through the ears was the sound of rage and agony of death. In fact, the aftermath didn’t look favourable. It was as if the sky enveloped in smokes were the indicator of the humankind’s uncertain future. Revolutions, the watchman of destructions were silently waiting to grow.
The dominant powers that were able to stand on their feet were hiding madly from the people they turned into savages. As there was also white where black was, there were also good in those hard times where there were bad ones left. Would there be a balance between them? Would there be someone to stop the course of events? Who would win this struggle for life? Would these blurred consequences left behind from the disaster be able to turn people into their usual selves?.. The shattered mind of the earth was looking for its answers crying.
T he boy gasped for breat h when he stepped into the cyber world. He dragged his heels but he held himself. He was yearning to learn the truth. Meanwhile he was trying to remain calm in order not to tremble with fear. He entered the gigantic tunnel lying ahead of him. Inside was covered with trees and moss blocking the view of the walls. There was no one around. He timidly kept moving. He was all ears but all he could hear was the sound of his ragged shoes going in and out of the mud.
He tightened his grip on the weapon he was holding in his hand. He couldn’t shoot but it was reassuring to have this with him while going on this ever dim-witted chase. He wrapped himself even more in his coat unable to warm him up.
Along the tunnel, inside was illuminated by luminous flowers. The boy inhaled the gorgeous smell of the flowers to calm himself. This didn’t make his worries go away. On the contrary, the stimulating smells of the flowers was reminding him the trouble he was heading toward. In a confused way, he was pacing in the tunnel and as he got tired, he was taking unnecessarily long breaks. He had to hurry. If he had been caught there, he would have had no chance to escape. You are walking toward your demise. They are going to find you and throw your head into a well. Hurry up. Either do this or run away.
The boy sped up although he was short of breath. When he reached the end of the tunnel, a wooden door high as the ceiling met him. He just stood there not knowing how to open it. He saw a small hatch under the door. He lifted it with trembling hands. His heart was racing. He wanted to groan in fear but he was sure he couldn’t do it.
The inside didn’t seem to expose his whereabouts as he suspected. There was a vast forest with tall lush trees lying ahead of him. He passed through the trees carefully. Chirping birds were drowning the crackling noise of the branches.
[_ Where are they? I can’t hear anything. _] Hiding among the shadows of the bushes, he kept on moving. His excitement mixed with his exhaustion was making him breathe faster. He was able to avoid a mudflat just in time. His hands were cut hanging onto the trees. Some of his fingers were bleeding and aching.
Although artificial sunbeams were shining outside, it was pretty dark among the trees. He used to find darkness creepy but now he was glad that it helped him hide. He was scanning his surroundings and at the same time, he was trying to inculcate himself but he wasn’t sure if it worked.
The light seeping through the trees a few metres ahead put a strain on his calming nerves again. The boy tried to slow down his breathing unsuccessfully. He still didn’t hear a word. Nor did he encounter a significant event. But he knew. The truth he was looking for was here.
As he approached to the point where the light seeped, his pulse raced. He felt the strength in his legs escaped, he didn’t care. He came here to find the truth and he wouldn’t turn back without finding it. As he neared toward the end, the laughs he was getting the wind of were becoming clearer. The arrogance of the men’s laughs standing outside only increased his resolution. He positioned himself so that he could hear them. The place he found was both in shades and also the most efficacious to rest.
The boy tried to see where they stood with his head hidden in the branches. The men were feasting on a flying piece of land. Except for the fabric-covered parts of the armchairs they were sitting in, the armchairs were gold-plated. There were five of them. They all looked all. The one in the middle whose armchair was looking the directly to the place where the boy was hiding was the Cursed King. He had court clothes on. With his rough face and bright yellow hair, his heinousness was doubling.
Cutting out the laughs and conversations that were hard to understand, they started to talk. Turning to the man in metallic clothing beside him, The King spoke:
“So I will be able to control everybody when this machine is completed.”
“Absolutely sir. I assure you.”
“Then, as soon as I say ‘Do it’, the whole Fenos will do it. Without thinking, deciding and using the slightest thinking mechanism?”
The man confirmed: “Everybody without exception.”
The King burst into laugh again. “All of them will turn into walking shadows. I will use them as my favourite toys. I will shine them and I will renew them. I will turn them into ornaments that obey my orders.” He grinned again. “I will call them ‘My Golden Shadows’.”
The scoundrels around him accompanied him with their laughs. The court official with the metallic clothing said:
“I have a present you’ll be very fond of Your Majesty.”The King turned his eyes twinkling with joy to the man. “You know I love presents Altemo.”
“I know and that’s why I have brought you the perfect presents for your taste.” said the man pleased. “How about trying the soulless people of the future here sir?”
The King raised an eyebrow. Tittering: “I’ll reward you Altemo.” he said.
“I’d be honored to be graced with your generosity Your Majesty.”
The boy stood in the hole he was hiding afraid to breathe. He was right about his fears. Now he should leave here immediately. The truth he was hoping to learn – but the truth he even in the least didn’t want to accept – was confirmed without hiding anything. Inside rage, fear, worry and many more consuming emotions were waiting to be acted out after being collated. I should get back . He brought forth his thumb to the button on his neck. It won’t be a problem if I wait a little bit longer. In case of a problem, I will press the button and be out of the cyber world. He withdrew his hand.
The man in the metallic clothing was telling the king what he had to do for the experiment. Meanwhile, the boy was rooted to the ground and was trying to silence his inner voice which was about to go crazy. The ideas descending on his mind were infusing him with rage. He restrained his soul which was about to get out of control. He leaned to the tree he was leaning harder. While he was adjusting his stance, the tree suddenly disappeared.
[_ With the whole forest… _]
At the same second, the darkness around him was replaced with a shining brightness. As soon as the boy blinked – almost at the same time as the forest disappeared – there was a sea of faces around him. Some of the people were wearing fancy clothes covered with fancy jewellery; some were in their casual clothes; the rest were in rags. The flock of people appearing suddenly were looking around them in a bewildered way and firing off questions.
The boy swallowed down the groan that was about to escape his lips. Taken aback, he tried to make sense of the things he was seeing. He couldn’t risk getting out of the game as he was standing amidst the crowd. The fear eating him up was running through his veins as piercing fire.
The King stood up. He came closer to them on his flying piece of land. With his every step, the boy’s heart was racing faster. His ears were humming with the curious conversations of the people around him. His whole body was shaking. There weren’t any signs of fear on the faces of the crowd. He copied the people around him – he tried to. He looked around with blank eyes. He asked questions with his trembling voice. He refrained himself from looking at the King who was watching them. Just copy. He won’t understand you are different from them. Copy!
The King called out to them with his thunderous voice, which sounded as if he was holding up a microphone:
“My dear people, you cannot imagine how happy I am now that you are here.”
Everybody burst into praise and applause.
[_ You scumbag, lying jerk… _]
“Today, I will have a few requests of you. Will you do them?” The boy was stealing a glance from the crowd to monitor their behaviours and at the same time, he was listening to the King. He went along with the crowd shouting “At your service.”
A troublesome smile appeared on the King’s face. The boy was aching to leap at the man at that moment. However, if he did this, he would only hurt the virtual body. Yet again his desire didn’t die.
The boy gave up aggressive thoughts. He would be already stopped until he reached that savage body pushing his way through the crowd. He remembered the weapon in his pocket. No, he had zero chance of hitting him if he fired. I will kill you one day. No, I will make it worse than that. That stinking body of yours will get what it deserves you fleabag.
“Kneel and salute me.” The crowd obeyed his order without making any noise.
The heads almost touched the ground.
“Good. Stay. Do not move your bodies till I give you an order.” The King had a device in his hand, which looked like a controller. His fat fingers wandered on it. With this move, the hard soil beneath them turned into mud. On it puddles started to appear.
The water level was rising under his legs as if someone turned this place into a pool. What is he planning to do? The boy couldn’t dare to raise his head but he could feel the water rising all around the people’s legs. The rising mass was approaching his mouth at a terrifying fast rate. He held his breath. The water could be over his head at any moment. He’s going to drown us! It’s a test… The boy knew that drowning was one of the horrible ways to die. If I don’t do this now, they will find my real body and kill me. They saw my face; this must be a piece of cake for them.
If the man’s words were really effective on these people, they would be willing to die silently and that’s exactly what happened. There is no reaction. Not at all!
The water exceeded his nose. He started to count silently. He could hold his breath for maximum two minutes – one hundred and twenty seconds. And then…
[_ One, two, three… Fifty… Ninety eight… One hundred… _]
The body of water disappeared. The boy coughed quietly. He didn’t raise his head even in this situation. He kept his position without moving even a muscle. Not being dead relieved him.
“I appreciate you puppets. But this is not enough to show your loyalty.”
The boy got goose bumps while waiting for his next words. His body was aching. It was always like this whenever his emotions got out of control. And now my emotions aren’t the only thing that got out of control: everything. The man continued his speech after waiting for a while.
“I am the most superior person in this world. I order you to keep this in mind. Nothing else can be more superior. I (he emphasised the word here raising his voice) make the choices and you obey them. Whether you like them or not.”
The crowd accepted the situation by lowering their heads. Meanwhile a pleased expression appeared on the King’s face. The boy was screaming inside while approving with his head. You jerk. You jerk.
“Or…” the man paused deliberately. “Would you prefer to fight against each other hungry and thirsty like you did in the past?”
The boy eyed the people wondering their reaction. Nobody answered. Everybody stared the man like they were confused. The boy now started to comprehend some things. When it came to making decision – at least for difficult questions – the people couldn’t think. But if they were told what to do, they would accept it.
The man must have seen the confused look on people’s faces so he continued his speech. “Instead of being free crawling, be Golden Shadows that live under my orders.”
Yes, he was right. After the King’s last sentence, the people’s faces were straightened and confident. It seemed as if they were joyous. Their faces were clarified and they were relieved. The boy wouldn’t accept that no matter what. He wondered if the people here were real or just a simulation toy.
“Now that you have accepted, rest assured I will shower you with rewards.”
[_ Take your reward… _]
“Now we have come to your last loyalty test; when you pull through this, you will have delight and pleasure and you will experience a peaceful life.”
[_ Damn. What’s next? _]
The boy filled his lungs with air just in case. But the scene he was worried about didn’t happen… Worse happened.
He looked at his reflection appeared before him suppressing his scream inside. Although he could control his upper body, his legs were shaking like he was about to collapse. His image turned to him as if begging for mercy. There was maximum one meter between them. When he managed to peel his eyes off his image, he realised that there was somebody appeared before the crowd. But except for a little minority, nobody had their own image before them. He couldn’t stop the gag rising up through his throat. He could stop the puke only when it reached his mouth. After struggling for a while to pull himself together, he sent back the disgusting mix down. He was short of breath.
The scumbag was taking everything slow as if he were enjoying the parade. The boy was sure that everybody felt the same shiver he did. Because every image standing before them had the same pathetic look. Misery was echoing from those begging faces. Being aged, misery and weakness… A weakness that consumes everything…
He studied the grey face before him. There was nothing he could do; the man was expecting them to do this. He looked at his greyish lilac eyes. There were dark speckles around his pupils. He studied the features of his sculpted-like face. Then, he turned his eyes to his striking hair.
His scarlet hair with golden shades was straight. The boy noticed his bowel movements with a new stomach explosion. He straightened his body to get rid of the spasm in his stomach. People always valued him because of his appearance. But he hated this so much. If he didn’t look like this, people could be interested in his other traits. No, nobody tried to understand. This was why he hated them. The only person he could love in this life was himself. The owner of the face he was disgusted…
“Did you recognise the people before you? These are the people you care about most in this life. I see some of you have reflections of yourselves. It seems this loyalty trial will be fun.”
“Yes, keep your eyes on them. In case you haven’t noticed, the only moving part of these bodies is their faces… Besides, they don’t have the ability to talk. So they are not capable of preventing anything you can possibly do to them. However, you are not interested what they think, are you? What is important is what I want from you.”
The man paused for a moment. “Now take your eyes off of your bodies before you. Look at the ground. You will find great tools for you there. I want you to take them in your hands.”
The boy winced. He was sure he didn’t want to see whatever it was waiting for him on the ground. He hardly looked down. Gun!
When he clutched the gun, a severe pain lodged into his skull. He forced himself not to hold his aching head. He glanced one or two meters ahead. The kneeling woman seemed like she was struggling for existence.
_ It seems I am not alone. _
The man before her could be her husband. They both looked in their forties. His tall body was about to collapse. He had an irrecoverable terrified look on his face.
There must be limits to the loyalty to the King. Or… was he wrong? Only for a short while, he stopped thinking about himself and questioned whether the people around him would follow his orders or not.
“My dear toys – shadows – now that you are ready, I am giving you my order. With the weapons in your hands, you are going to kill the person you love most. I want you to shoot those people who are maybe blood. You have sixty seconds.” He was quiet for some time for his words to be grasped. Then he said: “The first shooters will be rewarded with the nobility symbol of their choice and money.”
After the announcement, the hesitant fingers fired shots consecutively. Some were in a great hue and cry over the dead person; others were waiting for their rewards calmly keeping their head high. As everybody was moving like crazy, the boy watched the terror without hiding his glances.
His whole body was burning with pain. His image no more looked in pain. His eyes darkened with hatred. The boy tried to remain up; his gun dropped on the ground. He read the lips of the face before him. [_You can’t accept this. You must be crazy, stop now. _] His frozen image was trying to move.
The boy knew he was running out of time…
It's free instead of 2.99 $ The boy gasped for breath when he stepped into the cyber world. You are walking toward your demise. They are going to find you and throw your head into a well. He tried to see where they stood with his head hidden in the branches. The men were feasting on a flying piece of land. The King spoke: â€œThen, as soon as I say â€˜Do itâ€™, the whole Fenos will do it. Without thinking, deciding and using the slightest thinking mechanism?â€ â€œEverybody without exception.â€ â€œAll of them will turn into walking shadows. I will use them as my favourite toys. I will shine them and I will renew them. I will turn them into ornaments that obey my orders.â€ He grinned again. â€œI will call them â€˜My Golden Shadowsâ€™.â€ The boy stood in the hole he was hiding afraid to breathe. While he was adjusting his stance, the tree suddenly disappeared. With the whole forestâ€¦ ****** The right way has already lost. But minds trying to find it. And a genius boy... Nothing going to happen calmly; especially in this utopic-dystopian world. Live this adventure to the limits with Journal-Book Style.