Image via WikipediaHe jumped down from the tree and almost crashed into the dark tinted window that loomed before him like a giant eye in the wall. It unnerved him to think that someone could be in there, watching from the depths of the massive, grey stone building. But that couldn't matter now. Finally out from inside, he still needed to manoever his way through the complex security systems and intricate architecture of this place he'd been trapped within his entire life.
The sunlight felt raw and new on his paper-white skin, and the sky was an alien blue. He remembered the electricity he'd felt when he first touched the tree's thin leaves. But this journey was not over.
He was about to slink around the building, when he spotted an eye.
Eyes were robotic guards, that watched his every move. Eyes were extremely intelligent, but if he was swift and clever, he knew he could trick them. He seized a pointy stone - it was cold and rough and sent chills through his body. He then slowly approached the eye. He knew it was studying his every move, trying to figure out his objective.
My objective is to get out of here, he thought to himself. But where was here? Here was prison he had quickly learned. The eye was still watching him, unblinking. Could it DO anything though? That was what he had to test out. Maybe he could mesmerize the eye by staying very still.
They called him Martyn, and he was being trained in the warrior arts, but he wouldn't be anybody's secret weapon.
A small blue flicker caught his eye. Without his sharp warrior senses, attuned to every flicker and spark, he would have never seen it - but there it was. The eye was sending it's signal.
In his mind, a map of the place materialized, like a 3D maze. He'd always had the photographic memory, but he couldn't remember where he'd seen this: the fortress was even bigger than he'd thought. Scanning the edges, he saw a strange semi-circle of pale sand meeting a choppy, jagged swell of water that kept rushing up and down the shore. The sapphire-blue oasis mesmerized him. He needed to get there. That would be his only way out.
He clutched the stone and pulled his arm back. Like a slingshot, the stone whipped out of his hand and cracked the silvery glass of the robot.
There would be more swarming around him like flies to spoiled fruit. He ran to the left . . . and found himself plunged into a world of darkness.
Quickly, he felt around himself. He was falling . . . falling . . . endlessly through this hole, when finally, a glimmer of light surprised him.
It was a tiny, glowing butterfly, with translucent wings.
Immediately, he knew where he was. there was only one place inside this fortress with butterflies like these, and that was The Underground. Martyn had been in the Underground only once before. It had been a mission intended to sharpen his hearing, but that mission had been a disaster. He hadn't been able to sense anything in the smothering darkness, and as punishment, had been starved for a week.
Martyn checked the map in his head to see if it included the Underground. It did! There was a clear path towards the outer wall, the choppy water, and freedom. Unfortunately, he knew the journey wouldn't be easy. In the Underground, not only were their eyes and siren-like butterflies, bt also fangs. Fangs were large, genetically modified wolves. Fast and strong, they were even more deadly than the eyes.
Yet it could be a way out. If he could get through the Underground, there would be another hole, tunneling to the other side of the planet. The only way was forward, or else definite capture, and certain death.
He thickened the shield around himself. It depleted his energy, making him move slower, but it just might give him enough protection from the eyes and the fangs.
He began to walk.
At first, there was only eerie silence. The air was cool and earthy around him. Vines trailed around his neck like hands.
Oout of the blue a howling Fang seemed to materialize out of the darkness. That was the terrifying thing about this place - you never knew if you were being watched the entire time. For all he knew, this could be another test mission - but no, they would never let him entertain such thoughts of escape. He would be burned for sure.
The fang was on him in an instant, but the shield deflected it. Reaching into his pocket, he stabbed the creature with a knife stolen from the weaponry - and continued to walk easily on. Fangs kept attacking him, but he could not be touched. This place was designed for intruders, not him, Martyn the Warrior. Martyn, the human equivalent of an atomic bomb. Martyn, a boy who could see . . . a light at the end of the tunnel. He could do anything. He ran toward the light . . . and was finally free.