Coming Apart



Scene Title Coming Apart
Synopsis Adjusting to a new life is never easy.
Date August 7, 2019

Praxis Ziggurat

It's all wrong.

The lack of chirps and beeps, the missing ambience of fluorescent lights and laboratory machines, the absence of chemical cleanliness in the air.

It's all wrong.

The cost of the illusionary freedom that Devon still finds himself in is almost maddening. Adjusting is going to take time, he shouldn't rush, allow himself to acclimate — in too many ways it's all sound advice. Transferred from one prison to another, from absolute confinement in a world of sterility and scientific research to one of illusionary freedom with its views of the outside world and its lack of purpose, he should expect, accept, that it won't feel right immediately.

“Three weeks.” Closer to a month, actually.

He leans forward, arms locked out straight and hands braced against the railing that lines the narrow balcony off the small apartment assigned to him. His fingers curl tightly around the smooth surface, knuckles going white. Before him, the afternoon sun casts rich golden ripples across the bay, the tidal caps shimmer in defiance of the oncoming evening hours.

The passage of time feels foreign, with sunrises and sunsets to remind him of each day’s beginning and end. It was a luxury not afforded to him over the last eight months. It's frustrating in ways he can't begin to explain. It's wrong.

Being here is wrong.

Devon's eyes pull from the sparkling waters to the concrete forest that makes up the city of Praxia. He shouldn't be here. This isn't his home, it can never be his home.

“I don’t belong here.” And he will never adjust to anything while he remains here.

His arms relax, elbows bending, and he leans forward for a longer look at the industrialization that's grown up from the ruins of war. It's possible that he could make the jump to the nearest rooftop from where he stands. His grip widens, his weight shifts, eyes track from one rooftop to the next.

“I can make — ”

“Mister Clendaniel.”

The voice behind him is patient, but authoritative. A reminder that his freedom only goes so far. He's still very much a prisoner, if no longer a lab rat.

Devon answers it with a sigh. He pushes away from the railing, returns to the living space. He refuses to look at the owner of the voice — one of the many nannies from Adam Monroe’s security detail that he's sure keep tabs on him. He makes it a point to ignore their presence, to act as though they are a figment of his imagination, another symptom of the wrongness he needs to escape.

He walks right past this afternoon’s babysitter without a word of acknowledgement. He crosses the room, lets himself out of the apartment. It's only a temporary escape today, but soon…

“Run, run, as fast as you can.”

Devon's mouth kicks up at one corner as he whispers the beginning of the Gingerbread Man’s verse. The only other sound from him is that of his footfalls in the corridor leading away from his door.

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