If Senator Michael sees I didn’t put in my brown contacts again today he will dock my pay for a week.
With another squirt of cleaner on my rag I rub away the fingerprints on the living room mirror in his mansion watching as my violet eyes stare back at me. I should have known I wasn’t wearing my contacts since my eyes didn’t burn and itch. I’m an idiot for forgetting them but why can’t someone make them comfortable? It’s probably because the people that need them shouldn’t exist, just like me. Can’t go complaining about something when I am suppose to be dead.
Outside the room’s huge windows the bright sun sets over the Red Rock Mountains. The pink and red clouds dance delicately on top of the houses in our neighborhood signaling to me it’s only early evening and I can almost smell the fresh breeze through the glass. It’s crazy that when people think of Nevada all they think about is the blinking lights of the Las Vegas Strip, but this view makes the town look like a desert oasis. In August, it’s still suppose to be blistering hot outside but I’ve never felt the sun on my skin.
It’s complete bullshit that I’m forbidden to leave the property just because people are scared of people like me. I wish I could wake up a completely different person tomorrow and be able to go to school, meet friends and maybe make out with a guy. That’s not too much to ask right? Well, apparently it is.
“Violet?” Rose calls from the kitchen in her faded Russian accent.
“Yes?” I answer
“I will get started in here. Please do the banister for me then come help.”
“Fine.” Ugh, I swear to God I hate that stupid, ugly banister.
I sigh and grab my yellow cleaning basket, I don’t blame Rose, she is doing the best she can. She came to this country when she was only eighteen and needed a job. Nevada Senator Jack Michael took her in right away and made her his personal assistant. She followed him to meetings, shook hands and kissed babies at his side and was basically his right hand but when she decided to adopt me, he ripped away her entire career and demoted her to maid. Because of what I am, someone has to watch me constantly.
On the mansion’s wooden staircase I rummage through the basket and pull out my wood varnish and a dirty dusting cloth spotted with dark stains from years of use. Slathering the cleaner on I move my arm up and down on the wood and groan as I simply replace the shine from yesterday with one today.
We clean this entire house every day, it doesn’t even get a chance to get dirty. I would kill for a day off even though I don’t know what I would do if I ever got one.
I hate this house and him. I can only hope that one day I will put enough stupid cleaner on this ridiculous banister that the when the Senator goes to grab it, his hand slips and he topples down the stairs breaking his neck.
If he ever does fall down the stairs, I hope he takes that horrible painting on the wall with him. It’s the only thing on these white walls and for years I have had to look at nothing but that picture of him and his wife. His floppy brown hair slicked to the side, his blue-gray eyes judging everyone that walks by and a gleaming smile plastered on his face. A perfect picture of a politician, all appearance and no substance. He might even look friendly unless you knew him.
His wife actually looks happy with her long curled blonde hair framing her tender features. She has large blue eyes, a long thin nose and full rose colored lips. Her looks could win over any world leader and convince an entire nation to do her bidding. I always understood why the Senator would love her but never what she could see in him.
On the other hand, she died before I was born so she could be as monstrous as him.
His face smiles back at me while I break my back cleaning and it makes me sick, or maybe it’s just this lemon cleaner that smells like vomit mixed with a sour fruit. At this point I would rather lose my sense of smell then have to breathe this in for the rest of my life. Wow, I must be getting desperate.
Other than this picture I don’t think I have ever seen the Senator smile. If I was born normal like he was I wouldn’t be able to stop smiling, instead I got the genetic mutation of violet eyes which means I was doomed from the start. Since doctors and scientists can’t seem to isolate where these genes come from, parents need to wait until their babies are born before they are ripped away and put to death according to the bill he created.
Which is why I can never tell if my mom was being ironic or cruel when she named me Violet. She died giving birth to me so I can’t ask her, but each time I look in the mirror and see my purple eyes I have to wonder what she was smoking. Why not just slap a billboard to my forehead that I am a Mutant Chromosome Person?
Damn! A splinter of wood from the railing stabs my thumb and a tiny droplet of blood appears. I pull out the shard and suck on it, feeling the bumpy scars on my fingers I got from my childhood accident. They taste like bleach but I don’t care.
What a great way to spend my eighteenth birthday.
It’s days like this when I wish the Senator would just turn me in and be done with me. I must be the only one left of my kind anyways so I don’t know why he didn’t just finish the job the minute I showed up but I guess coming forward would get him in trouble too. Talk about irony, the man who created the Anti-MCP bill actually housing one himself? Sometimes when I am sleeping on my cot at night I think about snitching on him. It would be sweet poetic justice to see him on trial for breaking a law he created but then I remember if I told people, I wouldn’t be around long enough to see the Senator get in trouble.
The worst part of all this nonsense is that people went along with him when he created the bill. In fact, people even rallied behind him with other states signing their own Anti-MCP laws. All those with violet eyes were rounded up and executed and no one stopped it. It just goes to show that when people are scared they make horrible decisions.
Inhaling a big whiff of the lemon chemical makes me gag as I start polishing at the top of the stairs but what I see next makes my hand stop moving.
“No, freaking, way.” I whisper.
Down the hallway, the Senator’s office door is unlocked and cracked open. This never happens. Only once have I set foot in that room and it was when I was five. The door was open and I walked in taking a seat on the beige carpet by a very big window that overlooked the pool house where we live. Birds landed on a nearby tree and I watched as they sang to each other before taking off into the air again. I thought I had finally found a calm spot in the house.
But I was wrong, the Senator barged in like a hurricane of screams and failing arms. He screamed that I was never allowed inside his office, he asked if I had seen or touched anything, that he was entitled to his secrets and it was off limits to only me. He kicked me out and docked Rose a weeks pay claiming she was neglecting of her duties of raising me.
For thirteen years he has been careful not to leave it unlocked, until now.
A television is on in his study downstairs and some newscaster is talking about some lucky bastard who took a casino for a million bucks. This was his normal routine, watch the news for an hour before making himself dinner.
This gave me plenty of time.
With each step to the doorway, I pause to listen for shuffling downstairs but the Senator hasn’t moved so I pushed the door open and without a sound it opens wide enough for me to slip in.
Pounding against my chest I feel my heartbeat in my ears as I shut the door behind me carefully, my hands lingering on the thick wood. As the latch clicks closed I stop breathing altogether as the slight noise seems amplified by the intense silence of the room.
Again, I listen for footsteps from downstairs.
He still hasn’t moved from his study.
I’m chewing on my nails again, it’s a bad habit I am trying to break so I stick my hand into my pocket and my fingers brush the cool plastic of my asthma inhaler that I’m required to keep with me at all times.
Nothing in this room has changed in the last thirteen years and it takes less than a minute for the disappointment to set in. I feel cheated. The massive window that I remember is obviously still there and opposite that is the Senator’s shiny wooden desk and a leather chair.
On the desk sits a computer monitor, some papers and a few folders. Sheets with signatures and contracts stick out at all angles. It’s his work stuff which I couldn’t care less about. My heart sinks as I roll my eyes. For years I speculated what I would uncover in this office if I ever got the chance again and here I am, living out my fantasy, and I got nothing.
Let’s face it, this guy has the most mundane and pathetic life.
I look out of the window that I once thought was so tranquil and curl my upper lip in disgust. He has a great view of the pool house and especially of the window with the black curtains drawn open, my room. He can look right into my bedroom from here and the thought of my own little world not being safe from his eyes makes me want to puke.
But it does feel good to finally violate his space for once even if it’s incredibly boring. I turn back to the desk and start going through the three drawers on the desk’s right side. Opening the first one, I groan at his collection of staples, paper clips, pens and highlighters. The second one is equally as disappointing filled with files and more contracts.
“You have got to be kidding me.” I say.
I open the last one and my pulse starts to race while my hands go numb and sweaty all at the same time. Sitting on a pile of papers is a small white envelope with the name “Violet” written on it. The lettering is small and girlish with a curvy “V” flourishing the beginning of my name. I pick it up and hold it up to the fading light coming through the window. Tiny faint letters and numbers show through the flimsy thin paper but I can’t make out what they say.
I don’t know if this is one of the Senator’s secrets but I do know that when something has your name on it, you get to keep it. I fold it and slip it into my jeans front pocket.
As I am about to the shut the drawer I see something that was hidden underneath the envelope. A palm sized black box with a combination lock and it looks out of place among the pile of papers.
It’s a lot heavier than it looks so I pull it out with both hands, my fingers running against the cool, smooth, metal surface. It seems so small to be important but then why the lock?
A black shadow over my shoulder catches my attention. Outside the window, a cloud-like object moves closer and closer mutating and ever changing its shape. My jaw drops as I jump back, dropping the box on the ground as a flock of large black crows swoop down narrowly missing the window. Their aggressive chirping and cold black eyes watch me as they move. These are not the sweet singing birds of my youth that I watched jump from tree to tree.
A familiar tickle spreads in my lungs. Oh crap, not now. My breath goes wheezy so I whip out the inhaler from my pocket and shake the blue cylindrical body a few times before putting it to my lips. I breathe the medicine in and feel it rush down my throat and spread out into my chest. Soon my breath goes back to normal as I fended off the oncoming attack.
Because I am a MCP, an asthma attack from me could be deadly.
The side effect from using the medicine is that it sets my nerves on edge and makes me jittery, another thing I can’t afford to let happen. I slow the air coming into my lungs with deep, relaxed breathes in a desperate attempt to get control over my own body.
Eventually the scratchy feeling in my lungs fades away and my breathing steadies. Confident that nothing bad is going to happen, I look back to see the birds are making their way back into their formation and soaring high above the neighborhood. What terrifying and beautiful creatures. Their strong wings catch the wind and it allows them to soar. I wish I could do the same.
“What are you doing in here?”
A deep angry voice breaks the silence and I recognize it at once as my stomach drops and chills run through my body.
Spinning around I stand face to face with the Senator while the little black lock box lays on the floor between us.