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Grade
8

I used to wish to forget everything, but when you forget, you feel alone, you feel empty. Every other teen grows up, wishing for some time away from their family. I grew up longing for mine.

We left after our government destroyed Earth. They promised to rebuild a better society and fix their mistakes, but nothing could bring back our families. When they found Anawad, their new planet, we found Ivaldy. Most of us were just kids who blamed them for our parents’ deaths, who didn’t understand how corrupt the government really was. When we arrived on Ivaldy, we found a colony of robots. They were much more technologically advanced than anybody on Earth. These robots took us in, and showed us all the mistakes the government had made. Once we found more out about them, we learned that killing our families wasn’t the only bad thing they did. They destroyed the ideas of equality and democracy, that our ancestors worked so hard to attain. Our parents weren’t the only ones they killed. They killed anybody who spoke out against them. I was fed up with the government and the people who were dumb enough to believe in it.  

“I’ve been thinking, why don’t we start our own real government,” I said. “I mean, we can’t stay on Ivaldy forever.” I knew my idea would irritate Aero. He’d grown so attached to this planet, but we had all agreed there could be no secrets.

“We barely escaped the first time, if they found out we left they’d execute us,” Aero said.

“We just have to kill them first,” Ceres added. I opened my mouth to protest, but realized what he was saying was true. The only way to fix the government was to eliminate the old one. The second I realized I agreed with him, I hated myself. I’d always told myself I was a good person, that revenge is wrong. They slaughtered my family, so they deserve it. Right? I didn’t want to disagree with Ceres; even Aero was on board. As we started planning, I began to feel better about everything. We all agreed that we couldn’t cause them excess suffering. We would kill them based on their birthday, starting with the oldest and working our way down. Anavive had always been into science, so we turned to her for the most efficient way to kill them.

“The best way to wipe them out would be a disease. A disease could kill them quickly and efficiently,” Anavive told us. “I was reading a book one of the robots gave me, and it talked about a disease they created in case of emergency. You choose any two traits and it will attack anyone with those traits.”

“That could work, but it seems too good to be true. Plus, there’s no way we could be immune, we don’t all have two physical traits in common,” Aero remarked.

“Yes there is, this planet has technology we can’t even imagine. A different book I read talked about genetic mutation,” Anavive said.

“We had that on Earth,” replied Aero.

“Not this advanced. We could use their genetic mutation technology to alter one of our physical attributes,” Anavive said, and she knew what she was talking about. “It must be something that nobody living on Anawad has.” I started thinking about what she was saying, but coming up with a trait that nobody in existence has was really difficult. Then it hit me, we could alter our eye colors. It has to be a color that no human has, but nobody will question either.

“Gold! We should change our eye color to gold. Nobody will question it, but no one’s eyes are gold,” I said.

We needed to find the disease, before we could unleash it, and the robots could not know that we were going to kill the others, or they would try to stop us. We looked for days on end, but we hadn’t found anything. Then I heard Ceres yell, “GUYS I THINK I FOUND IT!” I ran over as fast as I could, and saw him holding a manila folder. It was labeled Disease 147892. Anavive grabbed the folder out of his hand and looked inside. The only thing inside was a disk. We were all disappointed, but she started running. As we were running, I realized that I didn’t really care if we found the disease. If we found the disease, we had to kill everybody. If we didn’t, we’d have to live on this tiny planet, with no other humans, forever.  

I was caught in between my morals and my happiness. There wasn’t a right choice, because they both had their ups and downs. I snapped back into reality, when Anavive put the disk into a projector. It showed us how to make the disease. The process was very intricate, and Anavive was the only one capable of creating something that complicated.

Anavive started to work on the disease right away. She predicted that it would take her three weeks. During those three weeks, the rest of us had to research, and figure out how to modify our eye colors. It took us a week, but we finally figured it out. There was a type of genetic modification technology here that could be injected. Once it enters the bloodstream, it will break into the nuclei of your cells, and recode the genetic structure. It seemed crazy that this could really work, but it was worth a shot. When we asked the robots for this tiny piece of tech they happily gave it to us.

Not long after we had all altered our eye color, Anavive finished the disease. She knew we wouldn’t understand the science behind it. All she told us was, “The disease will kill the oldest first and work it’s way down. It will take about 125 days. The time they die is determined by their birthday, and the day is determined by their birth year. Anybody without gold eyes will be susceptible to this disease. Anawad banned anyone but the government from traveling in space, so we have to find a way to get to Anawad without being discovered.”

“How are we supposed to do that?” Aero asked.  And even though it was a valid question, I was annoyed with him for asking. I didn’t know when I convinced myself that killing the government was okay. I mean, I didn’t really have an option anymore. Everyone was already so committed and invested in the cause.

“Teleportation is the transfer of matter from one place to another instantaneously,” Anavive read. She read this as if it had no value to us, but it got me thinking. We had no idea what kinds of technology the robots here had. Maybe the robots were advanced enough to have unearthed the secrets behind teleportation. When I discussed this with the group, we decided to ask the robots about it. We had to tiptoe around the subject, because we didn’t want them to suspect that we were leaving. The robots had more moral integrity than anybody I’d ever met. If they knew we were going to kill the humans, they might not have let us stay hereWe decided that Ceres should be the one to ask about teleportation.

“Wait, does teleportation exist here?” Ceres asked.

“Yeah, why?” Robot 772 responded.

“I was just wondering.” Thank goodness he hadn’t made the robot suspicious. “Can I mess around with some of the tech?”

“Sure, but you have to be careful.” Robot 772 was being very lenient. Once we had the tech, we began testing. We needed to release the disease as soon as possible. We teleported to Anawad the next day. When we arrived, it was empty. There were no humans, just buildings. It looked like the set of a movie, before the actors got there. It was a relief that we didn’t have to kill the government, but I wondered what happened. We were all confused. We teleported around Anawad, and looked for signs of life. It appeared as if nobody had lived there for a few years. When we teleported back to Ivaldy, I was relieved. We didn’t have to hurt or kill anybody, but the government got what they deserved. I wondered what the others were thinking. Were they wondering who killed everyone, did they think it was an accident?

Anavive was the first to talk, “Who would’ve killed everyone on Anawad, besides us?”

“I mean, we aren’t the only ones the government hurt,” I said. I felt lost. I had no idea who killed the government, but I was glad that I hadn’t became a murderer. We arrived on Ivaldy not long after we first left. It felt like we’d been gone for hours, but that’s the point of teleportation.

When we arrived, the robots were gathered around us. All I could think about was all the trouble we were going to be in. The robots were even more expressionless than usual. Robot 672 stepped forward. It asked us why we teleported to Earth. I opened my mouth to respond, but Anavive started talking, “We’re so sorry, I just wanted to go back and get some of my old things. When we got there it was empty. It wasn’t like last time. Last time the planet was in ruins, but this time it was fine. Anawad is just as beautiful and lush as ever. The only thing missing was people.” After Anavive told them that, the robots went silent.

After a bit of awkward silence, Robot 385 started talking. It said, “You don’t have to be sorry. We are the ones who should be sorry. We never told you this, but the government knew that you fled here. They threatened to come after you. They were going to kill you, but we stopped them. Before they could make it here, we killed the government. Once we got rid of the government, we brainwashed everyone else. Then, we reprogrammed the memories of their families and friends. All the humans are on our sister planet, Lastacia. We only killed the ones who truly deserved it, but the rest will get a chance to live without a corrupt government controlling them. If you want, you can go live with them.” I didn’t know what to say. Everything about this was perfect, the only thing the robots hadn’t done was bring back my family. If you’re watching this, I decided to go live on Lastacia. They brainwashed me and programmed new memories. My plan was to finally get a chance at living a normal, happy life, and to make the best of it. That didn’t quite work out. I couldn’t bear to give up my memories, even though some of them were bad. Losing my family shaped me to be who I am today. I’m proud of my experiences, tragedies, and happy times. I need them. If I watched this video it was because I felt empty, alone, and incomplete without them. I got my happy ending, and my happy ending was better than most. I got to keep my past, my present, and my future.

State
IA
Zip Code
50014