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Mousia

Priorities...

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{Or we could skip to dinner. Or breakfast. Is there any interaction time when they're not eating?}

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(They could be getting tests done and interact when they're not eating and then we could timeskip to dinner or something. But what do you guys think?)

(And I could make an OCC soon. Just need to do some things first.)

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{I think that's fine. What does OCC stand for? It's not the same as OOC, is it?}

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Kira had been in her room for a good while before a knock came again. Sighing heavily, the young woman came to the door and was soon led to the laboratory. She hated that place. They'd screwed up her hearing forever because of some stupid ambition. But she didn't fight back. The black-haired girl knew better than that. They would just shock her 'til she fell if she tried to do any real damage. If they were to escape, there'd have to be a really elaborate plan involving trickery and coordinated movements. Besides, there was no way to plan such a thing! Or was there...? She wouldn't know. Kira'd always been a street smart girl, but planning wasn't her thing. If someone wanted to know where to buy drugs or who to offer to, she'd know. If someone wanted to know a neighborhood, she could assess it. But she was useless in math or science and things like that. Grades weren't important...

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Willow returned to her room and stood in front of her window. The view was no different than it had been before lunch: acres of marshland with the occasional tree for variety. The view was comforting. Open. Free. The farthest thing away from a cage you could get. Willow had stared at it so often that when she closed her eyes the image hung inside her head like a photograph. Open. No cover. Even if she could get through the electricity on the glass, she would be spotted immediately. Would it be worth it? At least she would've died trying. Slowly, Willow approached the window, and held her hand palm-out three inches away from the glass. This close, she could feel the field of electricity humming against her skin.

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(There's a lot of room that I left for interpretation on purpose, but I'll try to clear it up. Although...I'm not the best at explaining. Whatever.)

 

All through the walk she'd been absorbed in thought. When the door to the laboratory was opened and felt herself under the prodding gazes on the two scientists assigned to her, she sighed and her thoughts melted away. She let her mind be clear and she let her face go slack and emotionless. She let herself be a specimen who was placid and almost inhuman. It was better for all of them to not see each other as people. She knew how it was to run away and to wretch one's heart away from all that was familiar. She wasn't sure she could do it again, even if she was running away from her life of oblivion and meaninglessness. She let the white-clothed people sit her down and attach thing to her and take blood. She presumed they were checking her hormones or whatever and trying to calm her down so she would loose the will to fight back. Nothing was concrete, though. All she thought was based on guesses and not on solid fact. But there was nothing to go off of. Their lives were wrapped in red tape and blocked off. However, she did know her way around the place well enough. She knew about the codes needed to turn off the lasers in the hallways. The invisible alarm-triggers that spelled out certain death. But as she went over all that in her mind, her face remained still as they tested her senses for the billionth time to check for improvement or abnormalities. They were the same. Her taste was increased as expected and her hearing was awful, also as expected. But she still sat as they checked her height and weight and vital signs. It was a stupid routine, but she'd become used to it. It was just a part of her life.

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Maria sat on her bed, hands over her eyes. She was listening, to the birds. She liked the sounds they made. The scientists hoped that she wouldn't, but she still did anyway. If she listened hard enough, she could hear the river outside and scientists talking. She guessed that they didn't like to think they weren't safe when she was around. One of the scientists sometimes asked why he was doing this when he was all by himself. She heard footsteps coming down the hall and ducked under her sheets. If she hid, then they thought she wasn't alert enough to know when they came for her, when they wanted to test her. Theyput her in a room with speakers. Going up really high, loud, low, and quiet. She liked the pitch tests over the noise ones. She always screamed when they started to get loud. Her ears rang afterwards, and they would sometimes take her and fix her ears. They then jerked her out of the bed, she complied, limply following behind them. She remembered the way. She remembered the way all too well.

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Vincent was lying on his back, staring up at the ceiling. It was pure white, but had no definition that his eyes could pick up anyway. He closed his eyes and focused on breathing. Never in his life had he noticed how much the air changed from breath to breath. Only now he couldn't turn it off. A breeze drifted into the room, and with the many scents to be found outside was the constant smell of electricity from the window that always mixed itself in. It had a...Vincent struggled to place a word on the smell. When he got out of here he was going to make a dictionary of smell-words. Tangy, he decided. He heard footsteps just outside the room, and soon his door was opened. He looked towards them expectantly, sitting up as they came closer. All of the guards had very unique smells. While he couldn't tell much about their faces he knew that the guard on his left was a female and the one on his right a male. They tended to be the ones to get him when it was time to go to the laboratory. He could see a splotch of color at the end of the hall where there was always a guard posted. As he passed by where the guard was standing, he knew that in the past week or so there were only 5 people who were alternating guard over this spot. As he stepped inside the main lab his stomach rolled. The scent of blood was overwhelming, and mixed in was that tangy electric smell and everyone's scent. He closed his eyes and forced himself to breath more slowly.

Edited by Katedj

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There was a knock on Willow's door. She answered it immediately and followed the guards without protest--anything to keep them from touching her. She had fought it the beginning, but once they had altered her senses, fighting hurt too much. Now she did everything she could to avoid punishment.

 

The led her down the familiar path to the main laboratory. When she entered, Willow noticed three other experiments in other corners of the room, undergoing various tests. She realized that she was no longer curious about what was happening to them. It couldn't be much different then what was happening to her.

 

A scientist slid a needle into her arm without warning. Willow hated the cold feeling of foreign liquid flowing through her veins and the sensation of metal sliding under her skin, and usually she had time to prepare for it. Taken by surprise, she yelped and jumped backwards into an equipment table, causing it to fall over as she knocked the needle aside. A rush or sensations hit her--the needle, the back of her hand as she hit the syringe, her lower back as it collided with the table--and she let out another, softer cry of pain.

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She waited with the headphones on her head. Maria was white-knuckling the chair arms, gripping them so tight that she was afraid they would snap. They hadn't started yet, but they would in a moment. There was a medium tone, about one decibel and 1,000 hertz. Then it got louder, another decibel. Maria knew what was going to happen, they would increase it to the point where she couldn't stand it anymore. She was crying at three, just anticipating the noise levels. It jumped ten decibels quickly, and soon she was at 2,000 and she was crying, visibly curled into a ball, her hands over the headphones. She couldn't scream, she didn't want to attract any more attention. "Please... stop it." They did, but only out of fear for damage to the experiment's eardrums. Things were ringing for a moment, and settled back down quickly. She laid there, just crying. She had no mask for this, just tears and pleas to stop.

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Kira looked over as Willow had a fit and knocked things over. Maria was crying soon enough and the woman rolled her eyes. Newbies. Why were they so affected by the tests? She opened her mouth as a scientist tapped her chin and a paper-thin sheet of flavor paper much like those breath-freshening strips was placed on her tongue. The burning sensation was barely tolerable and she clenched both fists and shut both eyes tight to endure the fire on her tongue. But after it faded, she dropped her hands and put on her placid expression once more. The white-clad person put an oxygen mask thing over her nose and mouth, but Kira knew it would not be oxygen coming through the mask. She endured the smell and bitter taste for about two seconds before beginning to cough. At that point it was unbearable. She threw a punch out to where the scientist was, but it missed. The taste and smell was too strong. She felt so light-headed... But she did have enough of a brain to pull the mask off her head. The scientist quickly shut off the machine that was pumping the coughing gas through the mask and grabbed the shocky-stick thing. The shock made a small gurgling sound arise in her throat, but she didn't let her mouth open and the scream to escape. When it was over, she sat back in the chair and was slack-faced again. It was the only thing keeping her sane.

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Vincent kept his head down as he was walked to the middle of the room. As he sat down he took one deep breath. All of the other experiments were here, the scents of their blood was stronger than their own scents. His curiosity sharpened when he heard the cry of pain from the part of the room Maria was in, for at that moment her scent had sharpened with a new...layer? Before he could analyze it further however the scent of them taking his own blood over-powered the other scents around him. His breathing slowed, and it was soon over. He eyed the container on the desk warily. He knew it was going to smell too strong, and probably too awful too. He braced himself by clenching his jaw and stomach. The moment the container was cracked he identified the scent as cat poop, but it wasn't even covered by litter. The scent was so repulsive that by the time the lid was all the way off Vincent could focus on nothing else but trying to control his stomach. The second he threw up it would just be worse. His head ached, but he was doing incrementally better. Little breaths...he could almost focus on something else...He looked up at the scientists and smiled. They shut the container, but he knew better than to breath freely. The scent would be in this room for weeks, but they didn't need to know that. His head pounded and he realized his heart was beating faster. They didn't normally start him off so easy. He rolled his eyes, easy? His lungs burned, he needed to take a normal breath. He did it as slowly as he could, but the nauseating scent was still too strong. His stomach rolled and he gagged, swallowing what came up as quickly as he could bear. The scent was strong though, and he bent over and breathed into his white clothing through his mouth.

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Gregory was tired of being here. But most of all, he was tired of being tested on. An alphabet chart was set far away from him, and he blew through the test with a score of 110 percent. But then the scientists went to a window that was barred shut, and that Gregory kept the curtains over at all times. In a fluid motion, they opened the curtains and Gregory had to shut his eyes with a hiss. The scientists nodded amongst themselves. His sight was increased, but his sensibility to light had decreased. They brought in a small petri dish that contained a horrid smell, and even the scientists had to hold their breath as they opened it and set it under his nose. He sniffed at it but simply raised his gaze to the scientists. Sense of smell decreased. The scientists scrawled this down and took out a syringe and a vial. They withdrew a medicine and injected it into Gregory, and he found himself getting sleepy. This was to calm him down but... He didn't think he would be calm for long.

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Willow glanced around, embarassed, and began stammering apologies to the scientists. They were familiar to her, of course. As far as she could tell, Knoll had hired ten scientists--two for each sense. Hers were a middle-aged man with a short temper, and a younger woman who was (relatively) kind. She just shook her head and filled a new syringe with a clear liquid. This time, Willow braced herself for the injection, and remained still and silent. After a few moments, she felt the effects of the the liquid set in. Her vision began to blur, then darken. She had undergone this test many times, and didn't panic. It was better than what the others were subjected to, though it still made her uncomfortable. They gave her different textures to touch, to see how well she could tell the difference while blind. They had started with easy stuff, in the beginning, like telling the difference between different textiles or metal and ceramic. Now the tests were much more difficult--telling colors by the heat they gave off, for example. She passed her hand slowly over the samples they gave her, and told them what color she thought it was in a quiet, disconnected voice. She could tell the difference between dark and light colors, but not much else.

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(Just gonna skip to dinner that night, if no one minds.)

 

The tests had been painful and agonizing. Kira hoped those damn scientists got the data they needed. She hoped Knoll's dreams were worth it. If not, their suffering would have been for nothing. They would have screamed and cried and bled and prayed for nothing. Nothing at all. But they were all eventually lead back to their rooms. Back to the white solitude. It wasn't all that much better, but at least it didn't hurt to be there. People didn't prod and poke them in their own rooms. Guards didn't handle them roughly or shock them with metal rods. They didn't have to endure what no man deserved. They didn't have to hold back their screams for fear of more punishment. They didn't have to hope and pray that they were doing what was expected of them. Their rooms let the experiments relax... Well, a little. But it was all over soon enough. A knock came at the door and she came to be led to the cafeteria. Dinner was served. She got her string beans and mystery meat and sat down at the same table as before. She ate slowly and carefully... Aw... That was definitely not five-star pork...

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"This is gross, right?" Gregory was trying to speak to another boy but he walked away. He was bad influence, the guards said. He rolled his eyes and brought his smelly food to the table he sat at yesterday. He was sore and tired. Yawning, he covered his mouth and looked at Kira. "Hey." he said. "I really don't think this is edible." he joked and smirked a bit. He was always the joker. Always trying to pick up someone's mood.

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Kira shot him a look before cracking a small, painful smile. "You're telling me. I'm the one who has to taste this censorkip.gif at full-force." She ate some more anyways. There was no way they could escape if she was weak and holding them back. That was against her code anyways. After having to fend for herself on the streets for a week or two, she knew how hard food was to come by. She didn't let such a necessity slip by. Even if it tasted atrocious, she'd had worse. Much worse. Like, street rat worse... Never again. "So... What'd they do t' ya earlier? Made me taste and smell cough gas. Kinda sucked." She shrugged as she shoveled some string beans into her mouth. They tasted like salt and water, but that was better than mud.

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Gregory tapped his fingers against the table. "They made me suffer in bright light. I swear I'm turning into a vampire." he tapped his fingers some more. "Thankfully I don't have to smell this crap." he said.

 

[GTG real quick.]

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"Hm. Let me see... When was the last time you fed on human blood? There's no garlic in this food... Maybe you really are a vampire!" Anything to not think about her sister. About being trapped like an animal in a cage. Anything to not feel like a failure. Like she would never feel the sun against her skin. Like she would never again feel the soft, cool breeze. She missed everything she had before. She missed the days at home. She missed music. She missed art. She missed freedom. She missed her friends. She even missed her family. "You're not really missing much, though. It just smells like salt and water and metal. Not so bad. I've had worse."

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Willow entered the cafeteria slowly, as her eyesight had still not recovered completely from the earlier testing. Everything was slightly blurry, which annoyed her because she kept bumping into things.

 

She recieved her tray of food and again sat away from the others in the cafeteria. She was glad she couldn't smell the food--feeling it on her tongue was bad enough. She ate slowly and wondered what the scientists would do if she decided to starve herself. Probably punish her until she decided eating was easier.

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Once he had reached the reprieve of his room Vincent curled up on his bed and just breathed, slowly and steadily for a while. He even took a nap. Or at least got close to it. It wasn't long before the guards came to bring him to dinner however so he went through the motions to get his food. He gave the group a slight smile as he sat down. "Kind of nice to see a group of people here for once."

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"It's not funny." Gregory sighed and looked away. He looked back down toward the food and frowned. He tapped his fingers against the table again. It was morse code that his father had taught him when he was not beating up his mother. When he was nice and happy. He was in the army, anyway. He usually used this morse code to curse out the guards and the people around him. It made him feel good. It made him feel relaxed that he could say these things without anyone noticing what the hell be was doing. Suddenly Vincent came over and sat down with them. "Hey." he greeted. Willow was sitting away and he looked at her and motioned her over. "... Sorry. I'm just tired."

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Kira shrugged a little, finishing her beans. "It is to me." She looked over at Vincent suspiciously. "Yeah." She looked down at her mystery meat and started eating it again, cringing with each bite. "God... If they could have made this any less appetizing I'd die right here." Steps behind her. They were so heavy that even she could hear them. "Stop complaining and eat your food." The shock lasted for a long time and she sat there, feeling electricity coursing through her body. A low moan escaped her as the guard walked away and stood again at his post. She ate without another complaint and sighed as she finished. "It's good that they straighten us out like that, huh?"

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