I´m sure I might be quite good-looking, in a sense.
Vanity is illegal here, though, and there are no mirrors and the glass that is here is tinted.
I tell my appearance through touch, and I´m not a stunner, but come to think of it, I guess I am sort of pretty.
My features are pointed and sharp, and my eyes are fox-like from what I can tell from the shape.
I long to know what colour they are, though.
I long to know what colour even is.
The only substitute for colour here is grey, black, and sometimes a little bit of white.
My hair is whitish blonde, but rumour has it that everyone´s hair here was dyed permanently to the same colour.
That explains why we all look so similar here.
No one can tell me what my eye colour is, or it´s a week in Isolation for them- not that it´s much worse than here anyway. But we don´t get to see each other, and there´s less food, and regular torture.
I´ve been here, in The Asylum, since I was a baby.
Father died of some illness before I was born.
I´m sure Mother is somewhere, in some other Asylum, but it´s hard to tell if she´s even in this one.
I bet you´re thinking that I´m probably camping down in the Underworld or something.
The reason why Sanroke is such a grim place nowadays is due to a world-crippling nuclear explosion.
Graycombe Nuclear Plant seemed a pretty safe place to be in. It would be friendly and warm, though most of it was fenced off, but the parts that weren´t were open to schools for field trips and stuff. That´s what I heard, anyway.
When one day, the Nuclear Plant exploded due to an unknown cause.
Terror engulfed the town, along with a deadly, invisible nuclear gas.
You couldn´t see it, you couldn´t smell it, you couldn´t taste it.
You couldn´t catch it.
You had to make sure it didn´t catch you.
This was way, way back in 2897, and the power of the gas was so strong that it would eat away any colour there.
Everyone in Europe was evacuated to the planet found in 2659, Porth, which had the right requirements to keep life there, but we had never really used it.
It was an easy journey due to the technology of then.
It was big, a bit bigger than the Earth, and water was easy to find- small pools were scattered everywhere, none being too far from another.
The people of then built up their lives there.
But supplies ran low over the years. The rain lessened and lessened, and the pools began to dry. Live food dried to a crisp in the blazing scorch of the nearby sun.
100 years after the evacuation, there was no choice but to go back home, where the gas should have dissipated within the years.
The wreckage back home was abominable.
There was not a hint of colour to be seen, and blackened plants grew dryly over the slabs of grey roof and ashy slate.
The people who had originally came from Earth had long died, leaving a clueless bunch of newbies to look after their new home.
Seeing there was no colour, they thought that was the way it was supposed to be, and rebuilt the world- but built it in black and white.
Everyone´s hair was died, colorful clothes were immediately burned.
As the years passed, the non-colour scheme began to twist, turning to a ban, and eventually a law.
Colour was criminal.
All those in Sanroke or had a family tree that lead back to there were immediately locked in an asylum, as in the Capitol´s eyes, we are responsible for this dark planet. More decades passed- until, here we are now.
In this blank-canvas-world.
It´s 3014 now.
Not a thing has changed.
I do wish that I knew what colour is; rumour has it that it´s a most beautiful thing. Maybe I would be ´happy´ if I saw it.
Oh, that´s another thing.
Emotion is banned here too.
Not that we´d show any in the first place. It just matches our grim world.
"Greetings, children," Miss Yolksom barked. "How are you?"
"As deemed suitable, Miss Yolksom," we chorused, like every morning.
"Positive." Ma´am confirmed.
I look over to see Aurora Smith, my best friend.
Only I can´t call her that. She is merely my acquaintance in the eyes of the Capitol.
The Capitol is the wealthiest in our era. I tend to name things. Even though the Capitol is the Capitol, we ought to call it Grand Boverick, though I personally think it´s so haughty and ´fine´ over there, like they´re better than we are, that I´d make them look foolish and less wealthy by giving them a lower title.
I spread it to the others.
They deemed it suitable.
Anyway, we left to go to eat our dried fruit and porridge. These were some of the only food that we could eat; not enough to make us vomit but enough so that we didn´t show ´happiness´, and that it didn´t have colour.
I sat with Millie and Aurora, and sat across from Ryder Drake, one of the boys in my section of the Asylum.
I know that all our eyes have been slotted with dull eye contact lenses, but I can see a very faint trace of a long-ago colour under the glass.
I´m not sure what it is, and it´s too grey to work out if it´s even a colour. It´s not enough.
I want to see a ´flower´.
Ryder´s hair is pale blonde, like mine, swept to the side of his narrow face.
I think he is quite handsome, but no one here isn´t.
We´ve all been given jabs to preserve our skin and make sure we don´t get spots or anything. They´re red, see.
I´ve heard they are, anyway.
Tashie was sitting with Felic. No one actually know´s Felic´s first name, but he gets into trouble so often, the teacher is constantly barking at him. And the teachers call us by our last names.
"Akers!" Mr Roachmill barks. Tashie looks up suddenly, hand quickly protracting from Felic´s. She turned to face Mr Roachmill, the Watcher for our form.
His harsh face looks back, careful not to use any emotion. His eyes gleamed menacingly. I´m still not sure if I can see the faint mark of colour underneath the grim clouds of grey, but there´s something that was snatched from him beneath the blank glass of his pupils.
His graying crop of hair quivered with maybe a hint of rage.
"Sir?" Tashie asked solemnly. She blinked.
"Isolation after breakfast please, Akers."
Tashie nodded slowly, and continued to shovel pieces of dried, dull peach into her mouth. If she, like everyone, hadn´t had her tear ducts drained, she´d probably be crying at this point.
Isolation was no picnic.
I know from experience, from four years ago when I tried to hug Aurora. To see what it was like.
I got a week in isolation, and stale bread was the only thing on the menu, plus daily beatings. The only way you could wriggle out is if the teachers are feeling kind and you apologize.