• ~Chapter 1~

    I woke up to the extremely annoying sound of The Daily Alarm. It was a Non-workday and yet A New Order had to wake us up at sunrise. I sighed, rolled out of bed, and proceeded to land on the floor just as my grandmother stormed into the room.
    "Jessamina Carr you get up this instant!" she wheezed. My grandmother was somewhere between 50 and 51 ANO's. Those were how many years she lived under A New Order. My grandmother is one of the few people left who remember the days before the world changed. She was supposed to stay silent, but she always told me stories of the before times.
    "We used to have colors back then. Beautiful colors of the sky and flowers. Ladies dresses and mens coats. I wish you could have seen them Jessie." She told me that when the ANO took over, they stripped The Sight and The Knowledge from the people, but grandmother was a strong lady, and she could remember many things.
    "I see a flicker of Red in your hair Jessie, just like you Mamma." She also told me about books and something called music. But that was enough remembering, because back in the present grandmother was rambling on about my daily chores.
    "Jessie are you even listening to me?" she shouted.
    I sighed "Yes grandmother, I'm on my way," and I went off.
    The Market was a little ways from my house. Each family was given a portion of food for the day. No more and no less. I went over to our designated table, grabbed our food sac, and was about to head to the water pump when BAM! My food bag fell on the floor, me next to it, and standing above me was Zach Desmond with that stupid grin on his face.
    "Why hello Jessie, i didnt see you down there," he drawled with that grin that i just wanted to slap off of him.
    "Well I wasnt down here for long, Mr. Desmond. Good day." It was A Law that you address your elders by their last names, especially men. Zach may have been a year older than me in ANO's, but he acted like my 7 ANO brother. His father was A High Government Official. That gave him power, and made him one of the most envied and most wanted boys in our neighborhood. I got on my feet and brushed off my ANO approved non-work day dress. He was still standing there grinning, so i decided to leave him. Before i could go he grabbed my wrist, something that was just NOT done. I looked around in panic.
    He saw my distress and whispered "The Falls. 22 hundred hours. See you there."
    Of course, our meeting place. I smiled to myself and went to walk home. When I turned around i thought i saw a flash of pain on his face, but it was gone with a flash and replaced with his award winning smile.
    I must have been grinning still when I walked into my house, because grandmother shot me a sharp look. But then i realized my mother was on her knees with my brothers arms around her. The phone not to far from her shaking hand. She looked up and i saw she was crying. I rushed over to her and tried to comfort her. She put a hand out to stop me, bored her eyes into mine and simply stated:
    "Your father has gone missing."