Recycled - Chapter 1
I’m not exactly sure when this all started. Sometimes I feel like an Alice in a bizarre Wonderland. But either way, our world is messed up. I’m not talking about child’s play like unemployment or economy.
I’m talking about human recycling.
We ran out of fossil fuels a long time ago. The government has been using renewable resources for centuries, but even then they still had oil. Now they've turned to an… alternative source. The recycling of human people is a common practice now. I don’t know all the details, but I sure as heck know a lot about it.
In barren parts of land around the world like the Sahara and Mojave, people of all ages are put to work running large generators in ways that sometimes seem laughable. But don’t laugh. Some run on electricity-producing treadmills until they drop dead from exhaustion. Others bike or do other forms of physical activity. But the others go to the Mill. At least that’s what a lot of people call it. The Mill is like a giant wheel that has sticks poking out in various places that people grab hold of and push. It turns and generates more electricity than anything else that we currently know about. But what happens to those who die or can’t carry on?
They get Recycled.
If they’re dead, then they may get burned or chopped up and turned into a form of charcoal. But if they’re alive, almost dead, or mostly dead, that’s the horrifying part. They can be auctioned off whole and used as slaves since they’re the strongest and made it through the labor. Or they can be cut up one body part at a time and donated to various wealthy people. They call it the “World’s Best Renewable Resource”. You can imagine that’s something that isn’t talked about at the dinner table.
I guess the remark I made about Alice earlier is sort of ironic, since my name’s Alice. Why don’t I introduce myself? My name is Alice Parker. I’m a girl, yes, and I’m almost 16. I live in this bizarre world, and trust me, it isn’t fun. I have long dark brown hair with long bangs and grey eyes. I’m a part of the resisting force against the Program, which is what we call that gruesome energy source.
Everything is monitored now, from information like e-mails to school bathrooms. They can only go so far with it, though. All of this is to combat the resistance forces, as we have gotten rather… violent over the years. In our defense, though, seeing the people you love turned into coal isn’t exactly easy to watch. So we’ve also gotten very crafty in our ways to avoid being caught. Of course, since there’s a resistance force, there’s also a police force on the other side to keep us in check. The government does like a challenge, but not when the challenge is too tough for them, so to speak.
The said police force is called S.R.A.S. It’s an acronym for Special Resistance Assassination Squad. They’re crude and merciless, as that is how they are trained. It pays very well, and S.R.A.S. is very good at what they do. A lot of people have been lost in the line of duty because of them. Including my mother.
She was part of the first uprising against the Program. She was a beautiful and strong woman. On September 7, nine years ago, she was cut down during a protest in front of the Capital Assembly Building. The protest was mostly peaceful, and they were fired upon for no apparent reason. After the first shots were fired, other protesters nearby quickly got violent. 224 citizens were murdered by the various police forces that day. My father took it badly. He was a handsome man, and was also high-up in the company he worked at. After my mother’s murder, he started drinking. My sister and I would lock ourselves in the room that we shared to get away from the crazed yelling and screaming. Broken bottles littered the floor and dents covered the walls around the home. I wanted out of it.
My aunt absolutely loved my sister, and offered to take her into legal custody, as my father was not fit to care for us. She hates me to this day, and never offered to save me from that living hell. The night before my sister was going to go and stay with my aunt, I ran away. I said good-bye to her in the middle of the night, then escaped onto the rooftops, as the city sidewalks are a dangerous place at night. I was seven years old. A man named Xavier found me looking through his hideout for food, and offered to take me in and train me, to make up for what I stole. I was trained in the art of navigation, both on city rooftops and streets, assassination, and infiltrating/thievery. I am very good at it. Xavier’s been training me for the past nine years. He’s like a real father to me, what a dad should really be like.
I’ll now try to explain a little about the resistance and what we do to you. Bear with me, this isn’t easy to explain, and you’re probably getting a little bored with my lengthy explanations by now. I promise, the next chapter will be where the real fun begins.
So the official name for the resistance is The Blackcoat Confederacy. “TBC” is a popular nickname, as is “Blackcoats”. This comes from the official uniform that every member wears during duty. Depending on what tier you’re a part of, the uniform varies. We can go undercover, but there’s always something representing us on. Even if it’s a necklace or an arm band. Since we’re a pretty infamous group, there are supporters and copy-cats. They’re not nearly as good as we are, and normally consist of high school or college kids who had too much time on their hands.
In The Blackcoat Confederacy, we have tiers and ranks that explain to anyone and everyone exactly who we are without giving away too much information. Tier 1 consists of all assassination and government affairs members. Tier 2 consists of thievery and infiltration members, and Tier 3 consists of information and intelligence members. I’m officially a member of Tier 2, as the Tiers do not define how good you are at something, only what you specialize in. Tiers 1 and 3 call me up for help sometimes, so I do what I’m told.
There are five Ranks in each Tier. Rank 1 consists of all new members to the system or people who are changing into another group. Rank 2 consists of all members in training and anybody who hasn’t passed their Tier’s test yet. Ranks 3,4, and 5 basically define how good you are as a professional. You can test into or out of the final three Ranks, and unofficially they do stand for something. Rank 3 is for new professionals usually, Rank 4 is for masters, and Rank 5 is for true professionals. That may be a little confusing right now, but I promise to show you around as the story advances.
I’m classified as a Tier 2 Rank 4 member. All the Rank 5s are famed, and I’m really close to being one of them. They’re also the trainers and the veteran members. I just have to pass the test! I can nearly taste it… Xavier’s a Rank 5, and is also a head trainer for Tiers 1 and 2.
So I won’t bore you any longer. The next part of this story will actually be something other than explanations. I hope I made this explanation readable, and bear with me! Thanks for reading my journal,