Pain, searing just below the nape…
Jung opened his eyes to find himself in a place he had never before seen, recoiling as the acrid smell finally registered on his nose.
“Is it over? Are we finally arrested?”
He tried to recall the horrors he just went through. The rage of the MENDAX employee, the searing pain on his left eye,
The screams of his mother.
Jung had lost the load of ingredients for the SNOVA pills he was carrying, fallen down into the sewers below.
Desparate pleading had granted him and his mother an extra 24 hours, one precious day, to go and locate the items, else they never see the sun again.
It was all for naught.
The supplies had long washed away by the time Jung returned for them.
His countenance fell further than it ever had been before. Not since dad leaving after a drunken rage, not since mother had become hooked to those forsaken pills, not since Tansy and Mila were put into a government vehicle to be raised by strangers. No, the very fact that Jung and his mother were now doomed to a fate with no outside, no sky, no breeze, no hope, no anything…shattered him.
They were supposed to outlast those elitist snobs. They were supposed to finally beat him, go and rescue the twins, and be happy again. But no, fate would not have it.
Jung had somberly wandered over to a grocery store, where he picked up ingredients for a favorite family soup with the last bit of money he had. It wouldn’t stop them.
Why was he even bothering?
“For mother’s morale”, he reminded himself. Despite his melancholy spirits, Jung’s mother was in a far worse state. She had lost her marriage, her daughters, her supply of SNOVA pills, and now finally, her will. She lay somber in the corner of the living room, sobbing softly.
Perhaps this meal would lift her spirits slightly, maybe bring some joy before the pain of darkness swallowed her.
Jung knew it was a lie.
The only thing that could bring his mother any peace now was one final SNOVA dose.
Curse it all.
Jung walked somberly home, when a glint caught his eye.
It was a coin. Jung had loved collecting spare coins as a child, back when dad was still kind.
“Doesn’t matter now, I’m not going to have anything after tomorrow.”
Curiosity prevailed, however, and he went to investigate the coin.
Jung’s heart dropped.
It wasn’t the coin that caused this shock, but the items next to it: A pair of SNOVA pills.
Mother would love it, finally have peace for the last moments before they were taken…
He snatched the coin and the pills without a second thought.
That evening, the soup had been made, bringing a wonderful aroma into the home, slightly cutting through the gravitas of what lay ahead.
Jung’s mother didn’t react.
After finishing his bowl, Jung attempted to give his distraught mother some of the savory broth.
“Please mom, you have to eat.”
Defeated, he sat next to her and held her hand.
“I found a SNOVA pill-”
She leapt up, crazed
Jung, shocked by the familiarity of the situation, panicked, handing her one of the capsules. His mother ran to the sink and swallowed it without a second thought. Soon she was fast asleep, unprepared for what lay in the morning.
The outburst left Jung in tears. “She’s no better than dad. How?”
Sirens and blue and red lights cut off his thought.
“WE HAVE YOU SURROUNDED. EXIT THE HOME IMMEDIATELY WITH YOUR HANDS UP!”
They still had 12 hours why?
They lied to him.
Of course they would, how could he not see it?
That sadistic monster gave them 24 hours to give them a sense of hope, only for him to take it, and crush it.
He wouldn’t accept this fate.
Seeing his mother peacefully asleep, Jung ran to the sink, chugging the SNOVA pill.
He collapsed a moment later, his nightmare only truly beginning.
“Oh, that’s right.” Jung thought to himself somberly. He attempted to rise
Confused, he looked down and tried to move his leg
Panic registered on his mind, thrusting control of it as Jung decended into hyperventilation.
He was paralyzed. Wherever he was, he couldn’t escape the intense, acrid smell and nasty floor. A drop of condensation that strayed into his mouth caused a coughing fit, allowing him to regain control.
“NO! I WILL NOT GIVE UP LIKE THIS! I WILL PREVA-”
Jung’s tirade was suddenly stoped when he abruptly sensed someone, or something looking at him from behind, eyes boring deeply into his neck.