On the Other Side

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  • Published: 20 Aug 2013
  • Updated: 25 Aug 2013
  • Status: Complete
Life is life, nothing more. That's all there is to it inside the Box. It runs like clockwork, everything perfected. No wars, no pain, no dirt, no unhappiness, but that leaves you with no love, without dreams, without free will. There is nothing outside the Box, and everyone knows that, knows that there simply can't be more than there is. The Gems (the rulers) keep everything in order, and it is everyone's sole goal to become one. Saoirse Rose has her eye on Head Gem, and it seems likely, with her spotless record and her father being the current Head Gem.
But might there be more than this?
Shortlisted in the Might there be more than this comp. :) :) :) Please comment and tell me what you think.


2. Chapter One

  My eyelids flutter open, and instantly shut again, as bright yellow light floods through the window. The beacon has been switched on, meaning I should probably awake, but as I don't do mornings, I stay put, curled up inside my Victorian-style four-poster bed. Once my eyes are used to the light, I reopen them, to find my sheets are wrapped up in a ball, but I couldn't be bothered to fix them yet. I am sure that I had some sort of nightmare, as my silk Chinese pajamas, are soaked in sweat and sticking awkwardly to my skin. My heart beat is above average, and my breathing is taking time to get back to normal. I've been having these nightmares for quite a while now, and not once have I remembered anything, apart from a smiling girl in a white dress. After that my mind goes blank. I just wish I could remember more, find out what really happens through my closed eyes.

  I stay there for a while, lost in thought, until a familiar gruff voice calls to me from downstairs.

"Saoirse!" My father yells at the top of his voice. "Saoirse Rose! Get out of bed this instant, or you'll be late. And you know what that could mean!"

  Yes, I certainly did. Late for Education Center (EC) means a scratch on my record. And just one scratch on my flawless record, could destroy my future entirely. Especially with my big Head Gem interview tomorrow. I sit up, and plant my feet firmly on the floor, twirling my toes in the thick red carpet. I stand up, and walk towards my drawers, selecting an outfit to wear. I decide on a leopard print skirt and black tee-shirt. I slip into a pair of pumps, and tie my long dark-blonde hair up, holding it in place with a black beret. I'll put on make-up after breakfast. I hate make-up. I find that, as my skin is quite sallow, when I wear tonnes of foundation, it makes me look ever so slightly like an oompa loompa, but I know it must be worn. As I slip out the door, and downstairs, the smell of rashers and pancakes wafts towards me. Yum. I can already feel my mouth watering. I never get rashers or pancakes, always healthy stuff, so I stay thin. My mother insists on that. Maybe, as my big day is tomorrow, they're making me a special treat.

  As I stroll into the kitchen, everything is the same (apart from what's on the table) as it normally is. My father is on the phone, the servants are getting a giving-out to, by my mother, and my younger brother, Alex, is wolfing down his food, almost as if there is no tomorrow. Even though there is a lot of noise, it still seems so quiet to me.

  I sit myself down, opposite my brother, and begin filling my plate. Not that's there's much left after him. It is still the nicest breakfast I have ever had in my life. The last time I'd had a breakfast like this was the day of my brothers birth. I sink my teeth into the rasher and it tastes like magic. I savor every bite, until the plate is spotless.

  The moment I'm finished, I dash upstairs to apply make-up. Once it's on, I hurry back to the kitchen, and down my pills with a glass of water. The pills are supposedly the reason everything in our world is kept in such order. I'm not sure why, but ever since they were invented, there haven't been any problems whatsoever. And one small flaw, could lead to some sort of revolution, which could wipe us all out.

  I sneak a quick look in the mirror on my way out, to make sure I look perfect. As I burst through the door, slamming it shut behind me, I see that my ride is already here. Panicked, I sprint towards the hovercraft, and straight through the open door. Unlike everyone else in EC, I don't take the school hovercraft, as I have a private one. The interior is fairly small, with a comfortable leather armchair and television, dominating the space. There's also a small glass coffee table. I take a seat on the armchair, clinging to the side as we begin to take off. The buzzing noise vibrates through my skull for a moment, and then, with a jolt of speed that almost throws me from the armchair, it takes to the skies. 

  I arrive at the EC within two minutes, and by that time, I have practically chewed my nails off staring at the clock. I have less than a minute to get there. I rush out the door, and sprint towards the EC's main entrance. The moment I reach the entrance, I slam my hand on the fingerprint detection device. After a few seconds scanning it lets me through. The first thing I'm faced with is Little Miss Boring (the robotic female voice that welcomes you. She leaves a gap between every syllable. Yawn)

"Good morning Saoirse Rose. You are 0.24 minutes early. Your lunch and bag will appear through the slot in just a few moments. Have a nice day."

  I grab my stuff from the slot, and am about to continue, when Little Miss Boring stops me.

"And Saoirse, please do not be so aggressive with the fingerprint scanner."  

  I laugh silently, and continue forward, instantly lost in the crowd. I am forced to push my way through them, until I finally reach my ED room. I share my ED room with three others, Myra Louis, Clarissa Delaney, and Jane Elliot, the three only other girls my age with any potential whatsoever. Myra is a small, shy, fair-haired girl, all angles. Clarissa, has jet-black hair, and an athletes body. Jane has strikingly red hair, which flows past her waist, and she practically has a tan she has so many freckles.

  Only Jane is present, but as she is meditating, I thought it best not to disturb her. She has a tendency to bite people's heads off. I sit myself down in the center of the room, and stare absentmindedly at the cracks in the ceiling. I nearly jump out of my skin, when moments later, in walks my scholar, followed by Clarissa and Myra who are slinking behind him with looks of guilt painted on their faces. I wonder what they did. My scholar, Mr. Perdoceo, has a look on his face that means business. I wonder what torturous lesson he has in store for us today.

  Perdoceo has decided on the most boring lecture ever. The Box's history. I practically know this lecture off by heart at this stage. In the beginning of time there was the Box and nothing more, until two mysterious gems appeared, one hatching into a man, the other into a woman, their names, Adam and Eve. They were the first gems, the Ancients, the creators of everything. After that, we just evolved, and survived. Not very interesting. Then, he decides to go into detail of what happened. Great, just great. Another few hours. The only problem there ever was in this society, was the Boxes Great Fire. There was a group of rebels, who committed one of the greatest crimes known to mankind: they started playing with fire. They clearly hadn't the highest IQ in the Box. And when you play with fire, someone's bound to get burnt. They paid for their mistake with their lives, as did many, many others. The fire spread, like a ravenous beast, searching for prey, destroying everything in it's path. But in the end it was not the fire that escalated to the death toll, it was the smoke. Black clouds of ash and smoke rose until they could rise no more, and the Box began to fill with the silent killer. It seeped down your throat, and with the cold, icy fingers of death, it clutched at your lungs, until you choked, coughing up your soul. Eventually, the fire was quenched, and the smoke cleared. We learned from that fire, and to this day, history has never repeated itself. And life goes on...

  By the time Perdoceo has finished, I have begun to drift off, completely ignoring him.
"Saoirse!" he barks gruffly. "Have you been paying attention to anything I just said?"

"Yes of course sir. Every word sir."

"Good. Well, class is finished today, so scram."

  What a lovely man, I think sarcastically to myself. I glance at the clock on my way out, and am surprised to find I have only been sitting there for four hours. It felt like days. As I stroll down the corridor, it fills with more and more students, all heading towards the choosing rooms. I had totally forgotten about the choosing ceremony. It is the day when you will find out who your future husband will be. Sadly, you don't get to meet them until your wedding, so the honeymoon will be a tad awkward. Honestly, I don't care who my future husband will be, because it's not as if we have any chance to socialize with boys, so they're all the same to me. I follow the crowd to the choosing rooms. I spot my choosing room as we pass, and I am forced to push and shove my way through to reach the door. I step inside, and see twenty or so others already strapped to the chairs. I scan the empty ones until my eyes come to rest on the one with my name on it. I sit myself down, and strap myself to the chair. I feel a cool liquid seep through my veins, and then I am plunged into darkness. A strangely welcoming darkness.

  I wake up some time later, to find myself, face to face with a female doctor, peering down at me as if I am some sort of alien. She disconnects from the chair, and hands me a bulging folder.

"Congratulations," she says, beaming. "Here is your official match. Thank you for coming, and goodbye."

   I smile graciously at her, and leave. I hurry down the corridor, and straight out the main exit. My hovercraft is already waiting for me. I walk up the ramp, and into the vehicle, clutching the blue folder to my chest. The door closes behind me, and I take a seat on the leather armchair. I decide to wait until I get home to take a proper look at the folder, but I'll just take a peek at the name and picture.

  Ciarán Insurgo. He has light brown hair, dimples and brown eyes. He has sallow skin, like my own. As I examine the picture more closely, I can tell that there is something off about it, but I'm not sure what. And then I see it. In his hair is a leaf, a brown crinkled leaf. But there are no brown leaves in the Box!                            








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