Beyond the Basics
Four teens from different backgrounds and different parts of the US all have one thing in common. They are tired of following The Standard forcing everyone to just be normal. But, to go beyond the basics is to go against society in the new America and has the terrible punishment of death.
Joining the Creatives is their only way to cheat death. But being in a rebel group is more than just fun and games.
Coralie: The One Flower
Coralie pulled away the shingles that covered it, and looked down, sucking in her breath at its beauty.
It was a single rose in a pot; a vibrant red color and had bloomed just today. But what was a simple flower to most meant more than her life to Coralie. It symbolized love, friendship, rebellion, a better life, and so much more than she could ever hope to understand. It represented feelings such as utter joy and hope; things that she had only experienced near this flower. It symbolized sweetness and freedom, and color. Such a beautiful word! But the only colors that Coralie was allowed to see was white or gray. The only flowers The Standard allowed were white ones, any other color and there would be horrible consequences.
Coralie sighed; she loved spending time near this beautiful creation, but too much time and others would suspect her. The small amount of time that she was allowed in between coming home from school and starting on her homework was precious time and she was lucky to have it. She had gone through the trouble of leaving her button in the bathroom and locking the door before closing it; she did this everyday just so she could see this flower. When she was done, she would unlock the door with a hair pin and put the button back on her.
Coralie stroked the rose gingerly, suddenly snatching her hand back when it was pricked by a thorn. A small drop of blood appeared on her hand and she watched in fascination as it rolled off of her skin and fell onto the flower, collecting in the petals and matching the color.
She carefully reached over and grabbed the glass of water, dumping what was left in the glass onto the rose. She saw that it was just enough water, barely enough. The rose's petals had already began to droop. Coralie quickly replaced the shingles, and turned towards the way she had come to leave, but someone was already standing there!
Coralie gasped, adrenaline and fear rushing through her as she realized what would happen if that someone would turn her in. And the person wasn't just anyone, it was Coralie's own sister, Ciera.
"I'm sorry, Coralie, but this is what I have to do," Ciera said as she kicked away the shingles and picked up the rose in the pot.
"Ciera, stop!" Coralie screamed, attempting to grab the pot from Ciera. Ciera instead hurled the pot over the edge of the roof, shattering it and crushing the rose.
"Now, we both know what I have to do to you," Ciera said, taking a step towards Coralie.
Coralie expected some sympathy from her younger sister, some sort of sadness in her eyes, but Ciera's eyes were full of cold, malice.
Coralie saw only one way to escape this; she turned and hurled herself off of the roof. Right as her feet left it, she felt Ciera slap her back.
The impact stung every part of her, and Coralie bit her tongue to keep from screaming. Every bone in her body felt as though it had been crushed, and she everything in her ached. Coralie didn't want to get up, but she knew that if she didn't, she would most likely be guaranteed death when she was caught.
She got up and stumbled to the right. Immediately, a pair of hands clamped around her waist and pulled her into the bush that she had insisted on her and her mother planting. It met The Standard, and it was a nice little decoration.
As soon as she was in the bush, the hands removed themselves from her waist and one slammed over her mouth while the other grabbed the button that Ciera had pinned to her back and flung it away.
Coralie slapped away the hand and turned to face whoever had grabbed her.
"My name is Peter, and I'm with The Creatives," the boy said. He had daring blue eyes and black hair. "We want you to join. And, joining will be your only escape from your punishment,"
Coralie nodded. She was ready to go.