I had learned to enjoy the quiet. It meant I was alone. And when you lived in a torturous hell, isolation was a good thing.
The stillness in my cell was a comfort that soothed me only momentarily. It was rare for me to have a moment to myself where I wasn't in agony, and I knew that as soon as the guards discovered I was awake I would be made to suffer. So I laid unmoving with my eyes closed for as long as possible.
When the bright lights filled my cell I couldn't stop myself. I covered my face with my hands, unable to bear the brightness even through closed eyes. They had made me that way. My hyper sensitivity to light was a result of one of their many experiments.
I heard the release to my cell door and curled into a ball on my bed. Footsteps echoed on the hard steel floor as the guard came towards me. A pit grew in my stomach as my heart began to race. I felt the all too familiar hands grab onto me and I cried out.
"Please, not today! I don't feel well!"
"Be quiet or I'll take you to the doctor," Oskar said.
He had been my guard for many years and had only ever bought my lie once. The scar over his left eye was a reminder of his punishment. Unfortunately he learned his lesson and never believed a word out of my mouth ever again.
When the lights went out I was able to relax my squinted face. I prayed that Oskar wouldn't take me to the doctor. The last time I went to the doctor and wasn't actually sick they put me in the chair. It was the worst of all the things they did to me and it happened more often than I could stand.
Oskar pulled me from the warmth of my bed. I cringed as my bare feet made contact with the cold metal floor that lined my room. Concrete walls painted white bordered us on three sides. The remaining wall faced the hall and was made of a solid unbreakable glass. It was so they could observe me with their own eyes as I slept.
I groaned wearily as Oskar dragged me from my room. He had a tight grip around my arm as he lead me down the dark hallway. Red lights lined the floor. They lit the way, but as intended by their design, didn't hurt my eyes. I could see the colored lines that were painted on the floor. They were guides to help soldiers find their way through the facility. Red, yellow, and blue all converged in the corridor my room was located in. I imagined the facility was quite the maze if they needed floor markers. Of course I didn't exactly get to explore to find out for certain.
The hallway ended in a split with the red and yellow lines going to the right, and the blue line going to the left. If we went to the right I would be seeing the doctor, but if we went left I'd be tormented all day long. Or maybe all night long? I never had any awareness of time since my hell was void of windows. Given the torturous experiments the doctor was performing the building was likely hidden underground.
We went left, a relief. I definitely was not sick, in fact I felt better than I had in a long time. If the doctor figured that out he'd continue his experiments, and I didn't even want to think about that. The doctor was pure evil incarnate. He inflicted unbearable pain upon me every time I saw him. If I never saw him again it would be too soon.
"Get dressed. And no funny business today," Oskar said as he pushed me into a glass room. All of the rooms they put me in were made of glass walls. They were constantly watching me 24/7. I never had any privacy, and if I ever looked like I had too much energy I was sent to the doctor. It was cruel.
The clothes they wanted me to wear sat on a bench. I walked slowly to it and sat down. Careful to not change too quickly I removed my gown and underwear. It didn't even faze me that my private parts were on display. There wasn't a single part of my body that the entire staff hadn't already seen before. I put on the clean underwear and pants that laid on the bench.
Faking my pain levels I winced as I pulled the shirt over my head. I could see Oskar's green eyes staring at me from the other side of the glass. The scowl on his face told me he wasn't buying it.
They had given me new running shoes to wear, which could only mean one thing. It was a physical training day. Fuck. I knew I was screwed. My stamina would be too great and they'd discover my good health. An ache radiated from my chest as my mind thought of all the things the doctor would do to me. The air caught in my lungs and I clutched my chest.
"Seriously patient zero," Oskar's voice was distorted. "I thought you were going to behave today." He had come into the room, but I was too focused on trying to breathe. My chest tightened and the ache intensified. I thought I might die, no I hoped for it.
"I can't breathe," I choked through the tears that slid down my face. When had I started to cry? Oskar looked me in the eye and sighed. I felt the burning in my face before I even realized he had slapped me. My anger took over.
"What the fuck!" I yelled. I could hear my blood pulsing in my veins as I clenched my fists. Oskar grabbed me by the ear and dragged me out of the room.
"You're welcome," he replied. The pain in my chest was gone and I wiped away my tears. My anger had overcome my panic, causing it to vanish completely.
We walked through the winding halls, following the blue line. My anger had completely dissipated by the time we reached the training field. A quarter mile rubber track lined the field of fake grass. At its center was a bunch of gymnastics equipment. I had been forced to use each piece many times over, but I knew they would sit untouched that day.
I was forced to run laps on the track. At the end of every mile I had to do fifty push-ups or fifty sit ups. Oskar would yell out the commands until I listened. There was no stopping, no water breaks, I had to keep running. They wanted to see how much my body could take and I knew my performance would be too good. I had too much energy.
Eventually the sickness crept in. I felt woozy, but I couldn't stop. If I stopped I'd be punished. So I pushed through the pain in my legs and the burning in my lungs. When the black spots clouded my sight, I knew it was all over. My view turned and I felt my head hit the hard ground beneath me as I collapsed. I welcomed the darkness.