Outside the Dome

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by The Writing Owl, Jul 20, 2013.

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  1. It was a quiet night in Utopia. Everyone was asleep as the oxygen tanks hummed loudly. The citizens all slept quietly as the computers kept their sweet town safe from all bacteria that would dare try and riddle them with disease. The town was content. Except for one boy.

    This boy was a curious boy. He wanted to know what was outside of the dome that covered their town. Why was no one allowed outside? Why were people afraid of this thing called dirt? What was outside of their protective dome? The questions constantly plagued him, so he decided to take action.

    He stood in front of a small door. It was one no one knew about. If he stepped out of the door, he would no longer be safe from the dangers of the world. Would he take the risk and satisfy his curiosity? Or would he stay home with his family?
  2. Étienne stood on the threshold, checking to make sure he had everything. His hands ran over the small tools and everyday utilities he had thought to bring-- a solar sphere, with multidirectional as well as beam functions, a las-knife, the only permitted weapon-like device, a basic medkit, a solar shrieker, a scanner, a steel violin, and a satchel of books. Did I forget anything?

    Blue eyes widened as he thought over what he was about to do, then narrowed in the best show of determination he could enact. He ran long, pale fingers that had never touched dirt through his black hair, the calluses from hours of music practice his only claim to hard work. His hands shook slightly as he reached forwards to open the door, and doubts crowded around like long shadows. If you do this, you can never come back. Father will make Alcyone the heir, and Mother will make sure that I get a proper mock burial. No one has ever come back from exile. He'd gotten a few vaccines, but only the most basic ones, and only because he was the son of the Architect of the Dome, who knew that the system wasn't infallible. If there's a breach, they would theoretically have bought him the time to reach a proper shelter.

    He shook his head firmly. He'd already decided to go out into the world at this time, when he was about to graduate and be recognized as a proper man. He couldn't keep sheltering himself. Surely it wouldn't be so bad, and if it was, he'd just come back. His mind skirted over the fact that he wouldn't be allowed back in.

    Bracing himself, he punched his father's authorization code into the door, and it slid open slowly with a familiar waft of recycled air. The space was white and sterile, like the rest of Utopia, and he looked around as the door sealed behind him. Pressurized air stirred up his hair and black clothing, which distinguished him from the blue-clothed scientists, red-clothed government workers, and white-clothed menial workers. As the outer lock disengaged, he strode forwards, his eyes wide as they took in a landscape he could never have imagined.
  3. Outside of the dome was what looked like a broken city. Vines grew over buildings and grass covered old roads. It seemed like the whole world had gone to ruin. Different noises of wildlife screeched through the air. Wolves, bears, even small bugs like mosquitoes had some part in the noise of the nightlife. Stars twinkled, different constellations easily spotted. Big dipper shone brightly at the young boy, welcoming him into the old world that had been long forgotten.

    Everything seemed as peaceful as Utopia, except for the gun shots that ran through the air. A few people were shooting at a girl who was running through the streets. Her red hair made her extremely distinguishable compared to the dark of the rest of the environment. She dodged most of the bullets, using cover to keep herself from getting injured. She pulled out a handgun and shot back. Three of the ten men chasing her fell to the ground, dead. "Get back here, you little bitch!" The leader of the group yelled.

    The girl scoffed and continued to shoot. She shot the rest of the others. "That's 'Miss Bitch' to you!" She yelled back, using the rest of her ammo to take down the rest of his lackeys, leaving only him and two others left. She pulled out a small hunting knife and ran at the three. A quick stab to each of the lackey's hearts and slitting the leader's throat left them dead on the ground. The girl panted before noticing someone coming out of the dome. She got into a defensive position, ready to fight off the boy and kill him if needed.
  4. Étienne stared out, looking across the landscape, then upwards, seeing the constellations that he had only seen in old star charts. The Big Dipper, Cassiopeia, the Northern Crown. And sounds that he'd only heard in old recordings-- animals. There were no animals in the Dome. He took one step, then another, completely disregarding the whoosh of the airlock snapping shut.

    His eyes opened wide as he looked down. Plants growing freely, old buildings. And dirt. Dirt! He reached down, simultaneously horrified and enthralled, and brushed the ground, staring at the brown grit that clung to his previously-clean fingers.

    His concentration was shattered by the periodic bang. That's-- gunshots? Those were in the old movies. He looked towards the source of the sound, then recoiled as he saw the men fall, their blood pooling in the dust. Heedless of the dirt, one hand rose to cover his mouth, and he almost retched as the smell of the outside hit him, so different from the plasticized, recycled air of the Inside. The coppery tang, which he could only assume was blood, hit the back of his throat like the strong ginger tea that his mother made. He stared, eyes unfocused, before seeing the girl barely ten feet away and flinching back.

    "Ah--" The first worry in his mind was that the language Outside had diverged from the language Inside. He raised his hands in a universal gesture, showing his hands were empty. "I don't mean any harm. Please don't kill me." His las-knife, hanging from his belt, should be completely unrecognizable as a weapon, as it was invented after the sealing of the dome. He couldn't help staring at her hair, though. Inside, everyone had brown, blond, or black hair-- he'd never seen red hair. It was supposedly a rare allele even before the sealing, and had since disappeared from the population.
  5. "Oh, don't give me that shit." The girl said, growling. She had reloaded her gun and was pointing it at him. "Lay any weapons you got on the ground, Domie. You shouldn't even be out here."

    Her blue eyes were hard. She hadn't seen a person come out of the dome before. She wondered what he was doing out here. Looking over his black hair, she felt heat rise to her cheeks. She cursed internally. He was cute. Why did someone who she was suppose to hate have to be cute? The dark hid her blush, which she was glad for. It also hid the blood that was on her shirt and the stains and scars on her hands. The pristine clean look of the boy contrasted the look of the outside. What made a boy like him come out here?
  6. Étienne shook his head. "I don't even have any proper weapons." Which was true, in its own way. That las-knife required so much energy that it would overheat if used in direct sunlight, and could only be used for twenty seconds tops in the dark. And the shrieker was only a distraction. "Please, tell me-- what is going on out here?" He'd never even seen Outside; only a few people in the Dome had clearance to go to the observation deck. Perhaps because, seeing this desolation outside, most citizens would insist on helping, and that would compromise the safety of Utopia. Now it was a little easier to understand why his father was always so insistent that he not see the outside.

    He rubbed the dirt on his hands on his clothing, unused to the grimy feel of his skin. "I really don't mean any harm," he insisted. Now that he was outside, he'd have to learn to deal with it. He didn't have enough clearance to open the airlock from outside, so until someone found out he was gone, there was no way he could get back in.
  7. "You don't belong here." The girl said simply. "Why don't you go back to your magical little dome thing and live the rest of your fucking little sheltered life." She continued to point her gun at him, expecting him to go back. She had an obvious hate for the people in the dome. It was understandable, seeing as how they got to live the easy life while the rest of the world had to fight just to survive.

    She wanted to believe the boy meant what he said, but he could easily backstab her at the last minute. That was something she did not want to happen. She heard yelling. The rest of the gang's group found the dead bodies. Shit. She had to get out of there... But what about the boy? She looked back behind her and to the boy. He would be eaten alive if they found him. She didn't give it any thought as she grabbed the boy, still holding the gun to him, and ran.
  8. Étienne turned, about to explain that he couldn't, physically couldn't, re-enter the dome, and that he had left for a reason. But his words were overridden by the sound of yelling, and then the breath was knocked out of his lungs as his shirt was grabbed and he was dragged away, the cold metal of the gun pressed against his skin. He swallowed, barely managing to keep up. My worst marks were always in Physical Education and Martial Arts. If I'd known it would be like this, I would have tried harder. I was all right with a sword, though-- I got third in fencing. But there were no swords here, no gentlemanly fights of that sort, that he could see.

    His left hand reached towards the shrieker, weighing the odds. They'd still chase us-- it serves no purpose. Maybe the light? It was at full charge, so its flash would be enough to blind.

    But it wasn't quite necessary yet, and if he used the flash, it would have to charge again. He shook his head slightly, his breath wheezing in and out of his lungs, his muscles burning. I opted out of this class for a reason. His endurance was awful, and the air seemed too thick. Oh, it's dust. We just filter it all out... He coughed, slowing for a moment, then sped up again, legs complaining.
  9. The girl found a rock and threw him to the ground, kneeling by him. "Stay here and don't move. If they find you, use this." She handed him an extra gun she had. "If you move from this spot, I will personally shoot your head off." After giving him the gun, she ran to piece of fallen cement, hiding behind it as the group ran toward her. She started to shoot, killing them off one by one. Soon, she ran out of ammo, cursing.

    "Come out, come out!" One of the girls yelled. "We know you're the one who stole our supplies! Get out here!"

    The girl pulled out her knife and waited for the girls to come closer. Once they did, she jumped, attacking the first one. She continued her attack, stabbing each of the five. The last one fought back, stabbing her in the shoulder. The girl hissed before stabbing the enemy to death.
  10. Étienne's eyes widened. "Wha--" He hadn't even finished before she shoved the gun into his hand and ran off. He looked down at it, realizing that he had no idea how it worked. His fingers examined the safety and barrel. An old mechanical model! I guess there aren't any las-guns out here, though. He frowned. The trigger pressure and recoil would both be much higher than those on modern las-guns, which were the only ones he'd trained to use. In case of an emergency, his father had said by way of explanation.

    He flinched at the shouts, and stood after it was apparent that the girl had won. He lifted one foot to walk, then remembered that she had told him not to move. And she'd just killed all of those people, so apparently she meant business. "Ah..." Oh, he still didn't know her name. Maybe it was best to remain quiet for the moment. His fingers brushed the med-kit, and he debated his course of action. She kills people. But those people also didn't look as though they meant to talk peacefully...

    He set the gun down on the ground precisely, then opened up the med-kit. Either way, she'd just been stabbed in the shoulder, from the look of it. He had nothing but the most basic equipment. A few scalpels, which he would apparently only need in the case of a bullet wound or messy break, several sanitized bandages which would re-clean themselves between uses, and basic fever, bacterial, and viral medicines. Good enough, in this case. "Ah, miss! I have a med-kit with me."
  11. The girl walked over to him, holding her shoulder. "You get hurt?" She asked, looking between him and the kit. She had questions, but the pain in her shoulder prevented her from asking them. She'd ask later. Slowly, she sat down, groaning. "Motherfucker got me..." She muttered.

    The boy confused her. Why would he leave Heaven on Earth for Hell? He seemed to be an important person. Everyone in the dome was important though. Only rich people were allowed in the dome when they first created it. That's why the rest of society was left to burn. She was tempted to cauterize the wound. She had done it many times before. One more burn scar wouldn't hurt too much.
  12. Étienne shook his head. "No." He reached out towards her shoulder tentatively. "I can treat your arm-- it looks like a regular puncture wound." He'd seen that kind before. Treated them, too, in the advanced medic training that he had opted for in place of Military Arts. Though most of the time it had been a simulation. His only real patient had been a child bitten by a crazed dog. "Let's try a compress." He pushed the scalpels aside. A tourniquet wouldn't do any good; the wound was too close to the heart. Instead, he pressed one sanitized bandage directly to the wound and looped another carefully around the shoulder, the ends sealing to each other as he pulled tightly. With luck, that would stop the flow of blood.

    But what to do about infections? Even with the wound sealed quickly, he couldn't be sure that a pathogen wouldn't enter the bloodstream. Once the pills were gone, they were gone; unlike the bandages, they couldn't be replenished outside of the Dome. "If you get a fever or see that the wound is infected, you must begin to take antiseptic pills at once. I will keep them in this med-kit for now, so that they remain properly sorted." He sat back on his heels, meeting her eyes. "Any other injuries?"

    Somehow, he'd ended up helping this girl. While he had dirt all over his hands and legs, it made him glad that leaving the Dome seemed to be the better choice. Inside, he had been trapped within an official role, unable to actually do what he wanted; Outside, it seemed that he could make his own decisions.
  13. "No." The girl said, sighing. She stood up, a small groan leaving her throat. "I can't leave bodies." She turned and started walking toward the dead bodies. "If I were you, I'd close my eyes." She started to pull the bodies into a large pile. If the Dawn found them, they would get a mark on her trail. She held out her hand, snapping. The bodies started to burn, a small flame growing into a roaring fire. The smell of burning flesh comforted the girl and reminded her of how much of a monster she was.

    She turned away from the bodies, walking away from them. She reached an old mailbox and reached into it. She pulled out a bag full of supplies that she needed. She ignored the boy from the dome and started to walk to her next destination, wincing slightly as she moved her shoulder.
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