Over the next few weeks, it became a habit to come to my senses strapped to a table while Geeks took down notes around me. Then, sadly, I would be led into the room that I learned to call “Flight Chamber” and be forced to fly for hours on end.
Steadly, overtime, they would increase my amount of fly-time. After a few months, I would be set loose to fly for about eight hours a day. It was exhausting work, but sometimes sleeping all the time had the benefits of whipping away ones memory.
About three months after the first day in the Flight Chamber, the chain of my day was broken quite suddenly and solidly.
“Wake up, Zara. Today you are to fly in the large room again.” Larson said, the simple words sending excitement through me. No more torturous hours of flying aimlessly, fighting crazy wind currents without the ability to glide or rest at all.
I struggled to hide the excitement and looked up at Larson with a tired expression, “Morning to you too.” I muttered, shaking out my body and extending my wings, finding them cased in my Deathwear.
“Come.” Larson ordered, spinning on his heel and leading the way out the door of my room. We went down the usual sets of hallways and doors until we came up to our same ‘ol elevator.
We travelled deep into the ground to reach the rooms’ door. It seemed farther down than I remembered, but I shrugged it off. Even before the doors clanged open, I sensed Makors presence.
Only it wasn’t Makor. At least, not the Makor I knew. Who could this man be that stood only a few feet ahead of the elevator, a deadened look in his emerald green eyes?
“Mak…?” I asked quietly, not sure if I want Larson to know how friendly I was with Makor. Well, Makor when he wasn’t demented, that is.
Makor met my eyes, though his eyes were devoid of all the intelligence and happiness that I had loved to see in them before. He looked slimmer-much slimmer than I had ever seen him. An officer of a big city would call him ‘emancipated’, at least in my opinion. His skin looked grey and had a see-through quality about it that I didn’t like. It made him look tired and fragile, like even his skin didn’t want to hold on.
Larson pushed me forward which made me realize that I had been frozen. I heard him snicker before turning to the usual pile of paperwork he spent hours on. Sometimes, I wondered if Lason had some sick kind of mutation that made him never sleep.
I take another step toward Makor, “Makor, are you okay?” I asked, searching his face for anything I remembered about him. Nothing, he looks like just an empty shell of his former self.
In response, or so I guess, Makor spread his wings and launched himself into the sky. Though his entire body radiated sadness and emptiness, his flight was magnificent. It seemed as though while the rest of his body deteriorated, his wings grew, feeding on him. Like a parasite.
“Mak!” I called after him, spreading my own wings. I’m forced to take a few running steps forward to jump into the air on a strong downstroke. Two more beats and I’m beside him in the air.
“Mako—!?” I began, surprised when he suddenly clamped his hand over my mouth. Unable to speak and under his strangely strong grip, I try to use my eyes to speak with him. “What happened to you?” I try saying by narrowing my eyes and then looking over his face.
“Nothing. I’m perfectly fine.” He said sternly, his deep voice was grave. That sure shut me up right away. What could he be talking about? Perfectly fine? Sure! The last time I had heard a lie that big was when Larson told me as a child I wouldn’t be here my whole life.
He suddenly released my face and turned off to fly away. To where, I don’t know. Maybe he just wanted to get rid of me, or maybe he wanted me to follow. Either way, I didn’t take the time to consider his meaning. I launch myself after him, forcing him to stop by pulling up from beneath him.
This time, I grab his face. But with both hands, “What happened to you?” I almost scream at his unresponsive face.
Well, screaming seems to work. His eyebrows come together and his green eyes seem to patronize me, “I told you, nothing. You should know!” he accused me. Accusing me of what, I don’t know.
“What do you mean nothing? Look at you!” I say, not allowing him to look himself over as I’m holding his face with my hands.
Makor seemed to hold something back within himself, “I. Told. You. I am perfectly fine. Would you leave me alone?” he snapped at me, pulling away from my grip. He dived underneath me and flapped off, flying more gracefully than I had ever seen him.
I flew in one spot, frozen by his words. I had always thought that those stolen glances and meeting eyes in the corners when we saw each other had been about trusting each other. Had I mistook him to actually care?
A sigh falls out of my chest and I fly up to our usual nook in the ceiling, wondering why Makor didn’t come here first. I pull my knees up to my chest and wish that the scientists hadn’t removed my tear glands. Who would think to remove such a thing as THAT?
I sat up in the secret nook for a while until I felt like I wasn’t falling apart anymore. There had to be a way to make Makor feel better. I resolved to not let go, to make sure Makor went back to the way he was before.
I don’t bother jumping off the ledge, instead I simply fall forward and let my wings catch the wind and lift me into the air. Makor was gliding through the air in the middle of the room, not even doing loops, just flying. There was no joy in the way that Makor beat his wings, he flew like he had to.
I swooped up to him and smiled like nothing was wrong, “Hey, want to race?” I call out to him, rolling over in air and doing flips for the fun of it.
He met my eyes and I could tell from his look that it was a no. I perseveared, “Come on, you just don’t want to see me do circles around you!” I taunted happily, forcing on a fake smile.
With an oh-so-fake giggle, I swooped down and then back up around Makor, twisting my body around him happily. His face was still blank, now hovering in air.
That was the last straw. I furrow my eyebrows together and dive down to him until I’m face to face with him. With both hands, I cup his emotionless face.
“Makor! Please, talk to me!” I yell at him, beating my wings quickly in a strange fashion to stay as if I was standing in air.
Mak frowned and tried to pull back, pushing at my waist. I stubbornly hold on to him, wanting to know what happened to my only friend that I had had.
“I’m fine! Get away from me!” Mak yells at me, tugging at my hands. By now tears are falling down my face and I somehow still hold on. I can feel him slipping away and I panic, pulling him closer to me.
Our lips meet while we are in midair, his cold and motionless, mine warm and frightened.