Perfection has always been a goal for the human race. No one realized, to be perfect is one of the hardest things to maintain. Like a wild animal, perfection is eventually going to bite you when you are not thinking of it.
“Happy birthday!” the lights blind me as I walk into the room. I thought Mom knew I didn’t like surprises. I still act surprised and taken aback like any other giggly schoolgirl would.
“Oh my gosh!” I yell, pretending to care it’s my 17th birthday. The room is caked in pink and white ribbons. The only colors allowed for birthday use for girls this year. I have always hated the color pink, it’s too cheery and makes me feel sick to my stomach, but I don’t show it on my face.
“My little girl is turning into a woman!” my Dad says tearing up looking at me. I’ve always been a “Daddy’s girl,” a title I didn’t choose. I sit down on the couch and stare at the small cake sitting on the table, lit up by the 17 candles on it.
“Blow them out!” my Mom says enthusiastically, I can tell she can’t wait to eat the cake. She’s always had a sweet tooth, but with the candies being banned from all sectors she can’t feed her craving for sweets.
I ready up to blow the candles. I make a wish, Have a normal life, I think as I blow the candles. Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!
The siren wakes me up from my sweet slumber. I open my eyes to see the plastered up holes in the roof. I slowly get up out of my bed. I hit the floor with a thud and walk to the washroom. There’s already 10 girls in the washroom doing their hair and brushing their teeth. The sweet sight of a perfection camp. I think walking into the dirty room.
A couple of years ago they started sending kids that are “different” to these camps to straighten us out. They described these prisons like summer camp in heaven. Really we live in dumps and are fed scraps like rabid dogs.
After taking a shower, I walk to the sinks and grab a toothbrush. (We all use two toothbrushes) I look in the mirror and only see a hollow husk of a girl. My orange hair is the only thing shining in the room. My face is drooping towards the floor from lack of sleep. My face dirtied from years of endless labor and abuse.
After I’m done “Prettying myself up,” I walk out of the washroom just in time for the morning siren, calling us for breakfast. We walk past the boy’s dorms which are smaller and made from leftover metal. About a year ago they had to worsen our living conditions from budget cuts.
I finally get to the cafeteria after 5 minutes of walking through the mud. I’m at the back of the line, but it’s not like I care, the food here is barely edible. After grabbing my “breakfast” I sit down at one of the tables. I sit at the table where the people don’t have any friends, so I don’t have to talk to anyone, well I never do, I haven’t heard my own voice in two years.
There is yelling behind me and I see two boys struggling over a piece of bread. The soldiers run over and break up the fight. The soldiers are always carrying firearms like we might kill them if they look away for one moment. I eat the slop and wait for the work siren.
After waiting for five minutes the siren goes off, and I head to the laundry area. All girls work in the laundry because the soldiers think that they aren’t strong enough for metal working. As I’m putting a dirty woman’s uniform in I feel something in the pocket. I reach in and pull out a key with a label taped on it; Armory key.
Oh my god! I think to myself, if I’m seen with this I’ll be shot on sight! What am I going to do with it? I think as I stare at the piece of metal. I can get us all out of here if I got the guns!
I make up a plan to get to the armory without being spotted. When lights out is called, I’ll wait for the guard to come in and check on us and then attack them with all the other girls, grab their key, get out of the dorms, avoid the spotlights and get to the armory. It’s a long shot, but if I’m going to get out, this is my only chance.
I have to talk to the girls first. Once the free time siren wails it’s tune, I get their attention.
“Excuse me?” I ask a little too weak to be heard. “Excuse me!” I yell to get everyone’s attention. I become nervous at the sight of all the eyes looking at me.
“I have a plan to get out!” I say, putting it all out there.
That captures all their attention, and I explain the plan and show them the key. All the girls agree with the plan, and we wait for lights out.
After 20 minutes or so the siren goes off signaling lights out. We all gather around the sides of the door. We were standing completely silent in total darkness in anticipation of our escape. It seems like a million years go by until we hear the door creak open. This is our chance.
As soon as the guard comes in one of the girls knocks the gun away from HIM and we all jump on top of him. The guard’s eyes slowly close with each blow. One of the girls tells us he’s “been dealt with.” I feel sick to my stomach, we’ve just killed someone.
I recover from the shock and grab the guards key. I open the door to the outside, Instantly girls are running out of the house and off towards the gate. This wasn’t the plan! I run towards the armory and hear the pops from behind me.
The armory is in sight when a guard comes from behind a wall and aims his gun at me. My instincts kick in and I grab at his leg. I pull him down on the ground and kick the gun out of his hand. I grab the gun and smack him in the side of the head, knocking him out.
I get up to the armory and fumble for the key in my pocket. I get a hold on the metal object and unlock the door. I’m blown away by how many guns there are in the small building. I grab a pistol along with an assault rifle and a frag grenade and sprint out of the door.
I turn the corner to the gate and almost throw up. All the girls at the gate are lying on the ground, the brown of the mud mixes with the red of blood where they lie. I become furious and sprint towards the gate. I grab the frag grenade out of my pocket and pull the pin. The adrenaline rushes through me as I throw the grenade at the gate.
The gate gets blown apart and I run towards it, being careful to step around the bodies. Then a streak of pain runs up from my leg exploding into my brain. I fall down and see the ground around me getting riddled with bullets. I get up and limp out of the compound.
The pain is almost overwhelming as I arrive outside the prison. I look for a place to hide as I hear footsteps running from behind me. I limp to the other end of the road and there’s a creek below me. The only thing separating me from it is a steep hill, might as well be a cliff. I look behind me and 4 guards are running at me, screaming at me to not jump.
No I’m not going back, I think as I ready myself for the jump. I look down then close my eyes. I jump from the ledge and I feel myself falling, the air brushing my face.
I open my eyes and see a tree bending away from the cliff. I barely miss the plant and keep falling. I panic as I’m falling, flailing my arms as if to grab the sky. I feel excruciating pain explode from my side as I hit a boulder imbedded into the cliff face. It slows me down and I manage to grab hold of a small plant growing on the cliff.
The momentum makes it feel like my arm is going to rip off. I let go of the plant and slowly slide down the slope. I finally hit flat ground and instantly sprint off into the brush. I can already hear the guards struggling to come after me.
I find a nice log to hide under, and I slip under the dead tree. After sitting still for 10 seconds, my adrenaline wears off. I feel the full pain of my leg. My leg throbs with each heartbeat, and I have stuff my shirt in my mouth so I don’t scream. I hear the guards shuffling through the thick brush next to the log.
“She’s not here!” one of the guards screams, obviously furious.
“We lost her,” one of the guards says. “she’s gone.”
I can’t help but smirk, I escaped! Eventually the guards walk away and I get out from under the log. I walk further into the forest with one thought in mind, home.