Sector 9

What would you do if you found out your whole life was a lie?


6. Chapter 6: Will

May 27th

    Maggie’s words hung in the air, bouncing around in my head. Your brother. Your brother. Your brother. But that was not possible.I already had a brother. Five of them in fact: Keith, Tommy, Garret, Barry and Diego. The boy Maggie was caressing didnt look anything like them, though. In fact...he looked like me. The resemblance was slightly creepy, in fact. He looked exactly like me, except for the fact that he didnt have a scar on his eyebrow.

    “Brother?” Asked the boy, turning to face me. “I dont have a brother. I have a sister. Nora. But she-” He froze, taking in my face. “Oh. Oh, wow.”

    “I dont understand.” He whispered, looking at me.

    “I can explain this,” Said Maggie, still looking with wonder from me to the boy in front of her. “I think we had all better come inside.”

    She jogged towards me, 4 people in tow. I recognized them from the gate peephole: They were brand new Wanderers.

    I followed Maggie down the stairs of our hole, into the family room. Our house was much larger than other houses, but the builders had attempted to create extra room for Maggie, since she was a foster mom of 11 kids and counting. Our house had a kitchen, dining room, family room, and 3 bedrooms. The smallest one for Maggie, the two larger ones for the girls and boys quarters. We walked briskly through the woodenwalled hallways. I could rememebr sanding the walls flat after Keith and Tommy installed them, not only for head, but for luxery as well. Maggie came to a rest in front of on of the many squashy armchairs in the room, motioning for all of us to sit down. We obliged, each sinking into one of the armchairs and scooting them into a rough circle around Maggie.

    “This is going to come as a shock to you,” She said, casting a glance at the boy. “But yes, you are brothers. I assume that you two were twins, but your parents were only allowed to keep one. You see, each household is allowed two children: One boy, one girl. Before a fetus develops, the father is instructed to take pills in order to alter the gender of his future child. When somethign like this happens, the parents never know. The caretakers at the hospital will deactivate the child and cremate them to use as crop fertalizer. Luckily, one of the previos Wanderers has gone undercover, and whenever a child is to be deactivated, she sneaks them out here. Will, you were that child. Dita brought you to me when you were only a wee little infant. No one had room for you out here, as The Wander was just flourishing, so I took you. James just happened to be lucky, and was raised in the city.”

    “Hold on,” Interjected a girl with long blonde hair and light blue eyes. “So that means that any one of us could have had a sibling, and the caretakers just..” Maggie nodded grimly.

    “I am glad you see this injustice. Will, how about you take James for a tour around the marketplace, and I will give these guys an introduction.” I nodded, standing and beckoning to James. He stood eargerly, practically running after me and into the rising sunlight. We walked in silence, him staring at his feet and me staring at him.

    “So, I finally get a blood brother, but he is a mute?” I ask, trying to lighten the mood. He turned to me, and I was startled to find an expression I knew very well, for I saw it in the mirror sometimes. Conflict.

    “It’s just… every second I spend here the more terrible I realize Ipsum was.” He said. I expected his voice to tremble like mine when I was upset, but his voice was strong. “They kill babies, they destroy the purity of nature, they allow creatures to-” He stopped abruptly, slapping his hand over his mouth.

    “Creatures?” I asked quickly, before he could change the subject.

    “I was just kidding, thats all.” He said, running his tongue on the inside of his cheek, just like I did when I was lying.

    “C’mon, James. I know there must be some reason you would leave the comforts of the city. Something you knew before you came out here, into the heart of nothing. You can trust me. I am your brother, after all.”

    “Yeah…” Whispered James, running his fingers through his hair. “Yeah, I suppose you are.” He reached into his back pocket, pulling out a small clear rectangular block.

    NO WAY!” I yelled, amazed. “No one has those out here. No one!!!” James laughed.

    “Calm down, man.”

    “James, do you realize how much money you could get out in the marketplace for one of those?” I exclaimed touching it just to make sure it was real. It was. I looked up, and through my excitement, I saw James’s expression darken.

    “No,” He said. “No one can see this.” He handed it to me, and I took it in m hand, running my hand over it's smooth black surface.

“No,” He said. “No one can see this.” He handed it to me, and I took it with trembling fingers, caressing the smooth black surface. I had only ever seen a hollow block once, and I had not been allowed to touch, and I had only ever seen one work once.

    “Follow me,” I said, thinking fast. “I know a place we can go.” I leaped up, whirling around to face Julia. “Julia, may me and my brother go to my place?” Julia stared at me, her deep eyes searching. After a couple seconds, she nodded. I was halfway out the door when she called to me.

    “Will?” She called.

    “Julia?” I asked.

    “Make it clear that the stakes of the whole resistance depend on the secrecy of the location to which you are traveling.” I nodded, leading the way out of our burrow, my brother trailing behind me.





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