A Stellar Flare of Young Adult Writing and Visual Art
BY SAM WALKER
I was awoken by moonlight streaming through the 10 centimeter thick glass window. It made a nice change to the typical synthetic lighting of the room. I wondered why they had opened it today… compassion, perhaps? Unlikely. It was probably just another test. Blinking, I gazed around the room, hoping that it would look different to the hundred other evenings, but of course there was no change. The same white walls, so shiny and artificial that they might as well be made of Legos. But instead, they were layers of steel: cold, impenetrable, isolating. I sighed and sat up on my bed. Identity began to float up to my mind from the dreamscape. I was Brianna Ordele, and I had been held here for longer than I could remember.
In the corner of the room, the mirror taunted me. I didn’t dare look, knowing who would return my gaze, just inches behind the glass. Anger simmered inside me. How had it come to this? That I was too scared to see my own face? It had been weeks since I’d spoken to someone. Or months? It had all blended together a long time ago; the boredom, the white and grey, the agony of waking up with syringe scars that hadn’t been there the day before. I’m really not sure what I’d do… if I saw them, caught them in the act. I think I’d be relieved –I’ve almost forgotten what a face looks like, everything seems so distant. Maybe it’s what they’ve been pumping into my veins, or maybe it really has just been that long. My family and my friends are nothing more than dusty memories in an untouched attic. I don’t want what little is left to slip away, but maybe I have no other choice… It would be easier… just to let the voices in. The murmurs, the whispers and the screams! The screams! The screams of the memories as the attic burns, a stray match or a flaming torch, it doesn’t matter. It is easier to forget, to let
it all in, to build a cage of my own – then no one will get in! Not the mirror men, not the boredom – just me and the voices! The furnaces, the flames, the memories, they all turn to dust in the end. But the voices are always there, screaming.
I screamed with them. Who I was didn’t matter. Why I was here, where I was, all of it. It felt as though my lungs would tear, that my head would split, that the burning in my mind might cease to be my imagination… and then, it did. I was awoken by moonlight streaming through the window beside my bed. I sighed and sat up, taking in my surroundings. My mind began to return to me, and I remembered: my name is Jessie Green, and I had been held here for longer than I could remember.
Sam Walker is a 14 year old writer from York, England.