Hello, friends. My name is Stephen Cain, the son of a Canadian national working here in the country called Enidouka. I shall tell of you this story of mine.
I was only visiting a newly-built art museum that displayed many works of Canadian artists. This museum is located in Zhoukai City in the Baukizen Region, and stood as quite an attractive piece of art itself. There were different paintings, but there was one that completely disturbed me. It was titled “Curse of Growth”.
The painting was of a young man screaming in pain inside a chamber. His veins were a bit exposed and blood was coming out of his eyes and head. I felt really sorry for him. But I think I might have heard of this machine before, although my parents would not tell me. After all, they were always busy for, you know, legal matters. I think it was…a machine that can turn children into adults…or something.
I was already called by my parents a few minutes after I saw that one. But as we went downstairs and out of the museum, there was a sudden riot. A group of people rallied on the streets and threw sticks and stones everywhere. The police crashed against them.
And without warning, I got pushed by a random person. Mom and dad were nowhere to be found. After that, someone (presumably an adult woman), put some handkerchief over my nose. I lost consciousness after that.
And when I woke up…I was surprised at everything that I saw.
I am trapped inside a chamber…much like the one that I saw in the painting. My hands and legs all have chain-like wires attached to them. And most of all, I had no clothes, except for my underwear. I felt…awkward.
I looked around for people operating these machines but there was none. Next to me were other children who suffer the same fate as me. To my estimation, there were about 10 to 12 chambers in the room that I was in.
After about 10 minutes, there was a woman. I think this woman is very familiar to me – she is Dr. Canny Kazousheu, one of my mom’s physicians. She used to come to our house for therapy sessions and such. How could she be here?
But I think I remember now what these machines are called – they are EVS machines…and these chamber versions are the ones that are illegal in the country, due to health reasons and child trafficking. Oh God…does that mean that I…
Just as I was about to finish talking, she pulled the main switch. All of us kids received the electric power…the EVS power. This woman…is going to turn us into adults…and make us slaves…
I felt pain all over my body, just as how the poor young man felt in that painting. At some point, maybe that painting had predicted what was going to happen to me today. My veins were starting to get exposed a bit, and blood started coming out of my eyes, as if it the electricity was purging something inside of me. I couldn’t breathe well. It was a truly horrifying experience, almost like being poisoned to death.
And then it happened; my body started reacting to the electricity. I was lucky enough to have a keen mind unlike the other kids because I am able to give you the complete description of how an EVS victim feels. But anyways, during this time, I felt like something was burning deep within. I felt like my brain was being banged into a wall in extreme pain. And then, my hands, my legs, my whole body…I couldn’t believe it, but it was there. I was slowly increasing in mass and size. I was becoming an adult…something I thought would be completely impossible. But here it is.
It was strange; I did feel a lot of pain but on the other hand, there is a part of me that somehow enjoyed the feeling. I have no idea why, but I kind of liked how I was slowly growing in size and becoming an adult by technology. But still, the experience was horrible.
On my estimate, the machines stopped by about 10 minutes or so. But I thought it was already over – turns out that it was only a black out. “This is my only chance to break free.” I thought. “Since after all, I’ve already grown up, and so has everyone, right?”
But I was wrong.
Just as I was about to detach myself from the wires and try to find a door opening in the chamber, the power went back and the electricity surged like hell. This…was when I literally screamed in pain. I couldn’t take it…it was too much.
And the last thing that I remembered was me dropping into the ground, with blood on my now matured hands. After that…everything was black.
“Ugh…” I woke up from hearing a woman’s voice.
“At last you’re awake. It’s been three days.” She said.
“Three days since what?” I asked, not remembering anything yet.
“Oh, you can’t remember yet?” she said. “Hold on.”
And then she patted my shoulder, and I instantly remembered everything; the pain, the screaming, all of it.
“I…I…!” I said, looking at my hands and listening to my own voice. I almost sounded like my dad now, except he still sounded older than me. This felt totally awkward.
The woman introduced herself as Olga Cain, a good friend of my mother. The room that we were in was an empty apartment that my mom especially made for Olga to live on her own. She then told me that I was a Zeryte, or a dead person who can still linger around the Earth as a human, but can also be invisible, much like a cross of a zombie and a ghost. At first, everything seemed like a dream to me, but when she told me to check myself on the mirror, I was convinced.
On that night, I still took a bath (even though I realize that I have already died from the incident). I looked at myself in the mirror again, only with a towel wrap, because I wanted to get used to my new face…my new body…my new life. I gazed at my changed figure, and though it might seem a bit off-setting, I…somehow like it. I mean, I’ve always wanted to see what I would look like in the future, and now here it is.
However, I was no longer a child, but an adult. I was deprived of the childhood that children are supposed to have, not just because I grew up so fast, but also because my parents won’t let me socialize with normal kids. But it would be better this way because I was now free to do anything that I want. And I’m also happy because I have powers as a Zeryte, and as an EVS victim.
The next day, together with Olga, we went on a secret mission to infiltrate and expose the same facility that made me taller. My reason for this is not just revenge, but also to put an end to pointless victimization of innocent kids, making them lose their precious childhood.
I disguised as an unconscious child victim who was caught by Olga, supposed to be transferred into one of the machines. And then she launched an attack which destroyed the machines.
On the other hand…I did a business of my own, towards Dr. Kazousheu and the rest of the team. They were all bundled in a corner because of the explosion.
I walked closer and closer to them; their gun shots never worked against me. I was completely invincible. They were afraid of me. I felt great about it. And as I walked closer to them, I simulated how I grew slowly on that day. With every step that I made, I grew an inch or two. My voice got deeper and deeper as I told them how much evil they had done towards me and the other kids. And on the very last step, I was only about a meter away from them, and I was back to my adult form. And then, I launched a great electric surge from the ground with my two hands, which killed all of them, in great torture – the same pain as the pain that I felt on that machine, and how the poor man on the painting felt when I saw it.
Killing people was not really my style, but it had to be done, otherwise, I’m not putting justice to the other victims.
But I was forgetting someone – a girl whom I had secret feelings with. Her name is Rina Juves.
Olga told me about her whereabouts just then, and that Rina was also captured by EVS captors somewhere in the region. I then hurried with Olga and rode with her on her Corsel Crescendo, model 2005, in purple/violet color, like her hair.
Rina was my best friend, and my only friend. We started off as classmates on the international school that we are both attending to. She loves flowers and would always offer me bracelets that she made by herself. I can’t let her childhood go to waste.
As we approached the building, Olga told me to go on ahead and hurry. It took me a long while to find out where the main controls are, but I was able to rescue some kids in other rooms. But there was a shocking scene in the main control room, where the best chambers were.
Rina was already inside the machine, and a certain guy in a lab coat pulled the switch. I tried to kill him, but there was a woman who blocked me.
“O-olga?! No! Stay out of this! What are you thinking!?”
“Stephen, listen!” she grabbed my shirt. “This was Rina’s entire plan when she heard about what happened to you. She approached me one day and asked me to set things up the way they are here.”
“I don’t believe you!” I persisted.
But she took me towards Rina’s chamber. “Rina, say something to him! He won’t believe me!” she shouted towards Rina.
“Stephen…” Rina said to me. “I heard about what happened. The thing is that…I kind of like you and…I felt so alone without you. I’ve always dreamed that if we grow up, we can get married and all that stuff…but since you’re dead, I had nowhere to go…”
“Rina…” I started crying. Rina’s voice started getting deeper and her body started maturing. She was becoming an adult, too. “I’m sorry…I’m sorry for leaving you. I…kind of like you as well.” I wiped my own tears, and then Olga gave me a handkerchief.
“Go on with your plan, Rina. I accept everything.”
And because Rina ordered Olga to tell the machine operator to set the parameters to max, she died the same way as me – due to the extreme electric surge.
But gladly, she awakened as a Zeryte like me, at that exact moment. We held each other tight, with her being a woman, and me being a man. We were no longer alive...we were no longer kids…but we still kept our promise to each other.
Olga then introduced us to the one who operated the machine. His name was Dr. Keuce Hatodirou, and is also dad’s new physician. He told us that his wife would be my mom’s new physician after this incident.
It was getting late. Olga took me home, along with Rina. She explained what happened to us, to my parents. My mom was so proud of Olga. Dad even gave me this box with a ring inside. Did you know what he said?
“Go on ahead, young man, and propose to your precious Rina, if you wish.”
And so I did. Now, we are engaged, but only legally because of our appearances as EVSed Zerytes. Deep inside, we’re going to take things a bit slowly and enjoy our childhood for a while.
After all, we can still transform back to our child forms, so I’m happy with that.