In this world, people have a connected match. It doesn't matter who they are or how different they are, when they are born they are born with a connection to someone else. Able to access their feelings and sometimes their thoughts, they share a piece of eachother's mind. When they all reach a certain age, their connection will either become stronger until they find each other, or weaken till their connection is lost, no longer apart of a pair. Most people believe this tale is nothing but a children's story, as in this futuristic age no one has remained connected, so no one believes it. But Lux believes.. because she's one of them. Unwilling to go, she's ripped from her family and she'll do anything to escape, even if it means playing along to find her ConnecteD pair.



1. prologue



The day sank low. The oranges and yellows of the sky slowly dissolved into dark blues and purples, the sun saying its goodbyes to us and its hellos to the other side of the world. Stars slowly started popping into view, making themselves visible for all to see and gaze upon. Lux did this.

Staring out her window, she watched as the sky changed and gazed at all the different stars, and gave a small smile when she noticed the faint outline of a constellation. She felt in her mind something clicked closed, as if someone had stopped thinking or went to sleep.

Lux sighed and stepped away from her window, going to sit on her bed. She's heard all the stories about the ConnecteD's, some claim they remembered what it felt like and it's actually real. But most shrug it off, considering it a thing from an overactive imagination. Just called it a children's story, nothing less and nothing more. Lux never understood how they could just call it a bedtime story, as she could feel her link. Sometimes she did think it was from an overactive imagination, but then the link would tug and tug at her till she was convinced again it's real, and she's not crazy. She lightly hummed, swinging her legs that were hanging off the bed. Her link was down, and she assumed her pair was asleep, and she decided it would be a good time for her to lay down as well. Pulling her blanket over her, she began to pull her legs up and start to lay back, when she suddenly stopped mid action.

She frowned. She felt her link suddenly pop back up, though seemingly normal it was more rushed and all over the place she could barely grasp onto whatever emotion that was floating around. When she finally caught hold of the emotion, in an attempt to calm her pair's nerves, she heard a loud banging at her door and she jumped, nearly rolling out of her bed. Frantically holding onto her pair's emotions, for her comfort or for theirs she couldn't tell, she walked over to her door and turned the light on. The floorboards creaked under her, the doorknob freezing cold when she set her hand on it. Twisting it open, she first peaked her head out. She saw her disgruntled mother's face walk downstairs in a white robe, while her father stood at their bedroom's doorway scratched his head. He peaked at his daughter, giving her a confused and tired look. Lux shrugged, finally fully opening the door and walking out, wrapping her arms around herself. She heard hushed voices where her mother went too, but she couldn't understand any of it. The voices faded, and were replaced by hurried footsteps coming up the stairs. Lux's mother came into view, and she stopped when she noticed her daughter. She motioned for her to come closer, and Lux did so.

Her mother looking behind her, then back up to her daughter. She pulled her head in close, and started talking in a hushed, rushed voice in her ear.

"Me and your father hoped this day would never come, that you would be one of us, but my daughter Lux you are special. Good or bad I don't know, but I want you to know we love you and you must not lose hope. I would be against saying this, but my sweet little one, rebel against them and get away. Do not let them control you," Her voice was cut off. In a harsh movement, she moved away from her daughter, as if holding herself back. Lux stared at her mother in shock and confusion, and her mind went a million miles a second trying to piece together what she meant. Then more footsteps started coming up the stairs, creating a stampede like sound. Lux's mother moved away and into her husband, clutching his own robe and him comforting her. Lux stared at them and back at the unknown men, her face melting into a facade of blank nothingness.

The man that was storming in front stopped in front of Lux, and smiled.

"Please forgive this sudden introduction, but I am William Burch. You are Lux, yes?" He brought out a hand. Lux rubbed her eye, the sleepiness finally seeping in. She eyed his hand with her uncovered eye, and eventually put her hand in his. They shook, before Lux harshly pulled her hand back and held it. William frowned, but it quickly went away.

"Why are you here? I just want to get some sleep," She asked him, and mumbled the last part, trying to slap away the blackness threatening to invade her mind. He pulled his arms behind his back, straightening and the two men behind him did the same. Clearing his throat, Lux didn't miss the glance at her parents before looking straight ahead at Lux.

"Well, you see, we are a specialized group. We collect—ahem, get volunteers, for this group. Though we only get the truly special people, and you, Lux, are one of them." He straightened his tie, and Lux frowned. He was nowhere from telling the whole truth.

"Well, I don't volunteer! This is our property, we have the right to tell you guys to leave," Lux stood to her full height, and narrowed her eyes at William. He smiled and closed his eyes in a chuckle. Lux's mind was a swirling whirlpool, trying to understand how exactly she was special. As far as she could tell, she was just.. normal.

"I'm afraid you don't understand how this works. You automatically volunteered the second we gathered you were one of the specials. The only way you wouldn't be volunteered, is if you were like your parents. Regular, boring people." He looked at Lux's parents, and Lux could tell her mother was absolutely seething. Lux's mind instantly brightened.

The link! That must be what they're talking about! It's my link that makes me 'special'!

Lux stepped back, joining by her father's side. He felt him put a protective hand on her shoulder, and her mother grabbed her hand. William took one step towards them. "Now, it isn't as bad as it seems. Think of it as summer camp. You'll have contact with your parents. You'll get to be with people who are just like you, you aren't alone." Lux shook her head, letting her hair shield her face.

William sighed, "Now, I really don't want to do this the hard way. You may get a bag and gather a few of your items, and if you don't, you get to bring nothing and we will be needed to take you by force." He narrowed his eyes at her, just like she had done, and Lux shivered. Her father squeezed her shoulder once before letting go. She looked at him in shock, and he smiled sadly. She looked over to her mother, searching her face for some kind of resistance. But instead, her face was filled with sad defeat, before letting go of her hand. "Mom, dad, no.." Lux mumbled, on the edge of crying.

"This is out of our hands, we're sorry baby girl. He said we could still be in contact, you'll be alright, okay?" Her father spoke in hushed mumbles, so only she could hear. Lux nodded her head, before stepping away from them and walked to her room.

"Very good. Pack anything you wish, a regular backpack should be an appropriate size. But only pack one outfit. That'll be your leisure clothing. Your current clothing will be your sleeping clothes, we have everything else covered. Bring a jacket if you want," He spoke, and Lux could tell he was only trying to appeal to her, trying to be overly nice to get her on his side. Lux grabbed one of her favorite bags, and stuffed a random outfit and slipped on a hoodie. She looked around her room, looking to find anything she could bring. It took her about five minutes to gather everything  she would want or that had sentimental value to her and putting on a random pair of shoes, before looking around her room one last time. She signed, trying to hold in the tears that threatened to slip down her face. She closed her door, sending a glare over to William before walking to her parents.

"I understand you're upset, but this is truly best for you. We are ready to leave, we'll give you all a moment before we all must leave." William led the two other men downstairs, till they were all out of sight. Not able to hold it back anymore, tears sprung up and started rushing down Lux's face as she met her parents arms.

"M-Mom, da-ad, why d-o I ha-have to go?" She managed between hiccups and an uneven voice. They smiled sadly at her, each planting kisses on her forehead. "This is out of our hands, we have no power of it. Trust me, we'll try everything we can to get you out of there, but if we can't you have to promise us you'll do everything you can to get out yourself." Her mother whispered, and Lux frantically nodded her head.

"We love you," they both said in unision. "I-I love yo-you guys t-too," Lux clutched onto them for dear life. They all heard the footsteps downstairs start coming back up the stairs. Her father's eyes widened, before Lux noticed the book he was holding in his hand.

"Quick, take this. Put it in your bag. Don't read it while anyone is around. If someone sees it and asks, tell them it's your diary or our family scrapbook or something, just let no one read it but yourself," Her father shoved the book in her hands. She had a split second to look at the rough, brown leather before shoving it in her bag.

"We're very sorry, but it's our time to depart." William stated simply. Lux stared at him with hatred, mentally picturing him falling over and coughing up blood. She looked at her parents for the last time, staring at them as if to forever memorize their faces in this moment. They hugged one last time, before she was dragged away. She dared one last look behind her shoulder, seeing her parents defeated faces. They mouthed 'I love you' one last time, and Lux did the same before their faces disappeared. She took one last look at her home, wondering if she would ever be able to come back. The man that had a grip on her arm pulled her closer, and Lux nearly tripped over herself. Once outside, there were two black SUVs, and Lux was shoved in the first one, the door locking behind her. The car started, and she saw her house slip away in the darkness of the night.

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