Walter tried telling himself everything was fine, which was probably the first time he had lied since he wished his loud and obnoxious neighbor a happy birthday. All Walter knew was that the kid had struck a nerve with Aaron because of the smelling salt incident. Personally, Walter thought that Aaron should’ve thanked the kid, but Aaron started yelling instead. The kid was surprisingly loud and shouted right back. And then the strange part happened. Aaron decided to throw a punch at the kid, but the fist never made contact. Instead, the fist stopped inches from the kid’s face. Then the second part happened. The water on the floor from Walter’s failed attempt to wake Aaron up began to rise. It didn’t stop until it reached the ceiling, and then all the water fell in unison.
Aaron seemed to regain control of his hand because he started sputtering and rubbing his eyes, trying to get the water out. Walter did the same. Oddly, the kid seemed perfectly dry.
“What… how?” Aaron asked no one in particular.
The kid sank down into the water, trembling. Walter was still trying to figure out what had happened. He heard the words the kid had told him earlier, about the tests, the hand and the brain, and the tubes. Something inside his brain clicked.
“Psychokinesis,” was all that left Walter’s mouth.
Rats had infested the kitchen. There were rats in all of the drawers, cabinets, and pantries. Scarlett didn’t know how so many rats had found their way into the kitchen, but there were easily over a hundred. It started with one drawer, but almost every drawer after that had more of the furry rodents. Scarlett had finally found what she had been looking for: a can opener, so she left.
The cafeteria was just as quiet as it had been when Scarlett was first in it. The eerie silence sent shivers down her back, and she slowly advanced towards the staircase. Her back was better, and she no longer felt pain, just numbness. Climbing the stairs, Scarlett thought about her situation. Should she go look for Aaron, or should she stay put? Staying put would be safer, but finding Aaron would be best. She had seen enough horror movies in her life to know what happens when you split up. But where would she look? There was the ground floor where Aaron worked, there was middle management, there was the hospital and medical wing, there was administration, and there was storage.
Scarlett figured she would work from the ground up. First off was to explore middle management. Scarlett had no idea why a laboratory needed middle management, but there was an entire floor dedicated to it. The offices were in neat rows lining the hallway, and from a glance, each one looked identical. That’s what she thought up until the third hallway she went down. Each office was in uniform, except one.
The peculiar thing about this office was the fact that it had no doorframe. And inside was a disaster. Papers littered the floor, and the desk in the center had all sorts of office supplies scattered on it. A storage closet in the back was open, and a broken broom lay on the opposite side of the room. Scarlett shuddered. Who knew what had happened here?
“Psycho-what?” Aaron asked, still trying to wrap his head around the events that had just occurred.
“Psychokinesis, but you would probably know about it as the more common term, telekinesis,” Walter told Aaron. “It’s the ability to control matter and objects without physical contact. I may just be in middle management, but I know my stuff.”
“Oh,” was the only thing Aaron said.
“You really are psychopaths down on ground floor, aren’t you?” Walter commented.
“I think so,” Aaron replied quietly. “I think so.”
“What should we do with the kid?” Walter asked.
“I don’t know,” Aaron said, walking over to the corner of the room and slumping against the wall. Much to his surprise, he fell backward. The wall was no longer there, and instead, he was staring up into another room. Startled, he scrambled to his feet. The room he had just been in disappeared.
“Are you ok?” Walter asked.
“The wall…” Aaron said.
“What about the wall?” Walter inquired.
“It’s… it’s not there!” Aaron explained.
“It’s right there, Aaron,” Walter assured Aaron.
“No! Look,” Aaron said, backing into the wall, which was solid.
“See? Nothing to worry about,” Walter said.
“Come on, Walter! You must have seen it,” Aaron exclaimed.
“I did,” said a voice. The voice did not belong to Walter. It was the kid.
“See, Walter? It happened,” Aaron told Walter.
“Yeah, yeah, sure it did,” Walter said, unconvinced.
“No, look!” Aaron tried to remember what he had done last time. He crouched down on his knees and fell backward. There was an odd sensation, and he was in the room again. It had dim red lights and a desk. The desk was tall and had an equally tall chair next to it. The rest of the room was empty, and the floor was cold and hard. Aaron was shoved into the room, and he started to scream. A hand was put over his mouth to silence him. He felt someone standing over him, then blackness.
Scarlett now wondered if the monster had been in the same room that she had been in just a few hours ago. That would explain why the room was so messy, yet at the same time, she wondered if the monster had retreated to this floor. She stepped back into the elevator cautiously, then hit the button MEDICAL WING. The metal gears creaked precariously, but the elevator car made it all the way up to the medical wing. The medical wing was silent. The rooms in the first hallway were empty. They were the surgery rooms. The second hallway was dedicated to medical rooms, which had a cot and a medical supplies kit. The first two were empty, but the third one was flooded with water. Scarlett could hear muffled talking, but she didn’t know where it was coming from.
“Hello? Is anyone here?” Scarlett asked.
“Scarlett?” The wall of the room said.
Hello, my name is Luke Fann. I love to read and write myself into a fantastical realm, but I love all genres. Of course, such a task requires assistance from my parents and older brother. I've feasted on alligators and tamed beasts like alpacas (my favorite animal), but none of that compares to my greatest weapon: a pencil. I am an editor here for the City Voice, and this is my second year writing for it.