[i remember loving this project
then life got in the way and i forgot the password
buuut now i’ve remembered it and i’m tempted to resume this little pre-game project
hmm hmm hmm…]
TS: June 1st, 2170, 21:30:11
Not on Earth, no— Most cultures that still celebrate the day, whether on Earth or beyond, do it on the 24th. Our seasons were close to Earth’s, but not quite the same: Summer was much longer, and as such the “midsummer” date (and the summer solstice) would occur around late May and early June this year. To make it simpler for everyone, it was decided to celebrate on June 1st. Every year the date changed, of course— Mindoir’s years don’t quite match up with Earth years, as our years incorporate an extra seventeen days, which makes planning holidays far more complicated than they need to be. (Fitting in our new year with Earth’s new year and the Chinese new year was always entertaining.)
The holiday is always well timed: The corn harvest is over (thank every power that may be), and the wet season begins shortly after, which means we get to look forward to days spent inside trying to avoid drowning. The growing season is year round, you don’t really have a winter until you get closer to the poles, so we alternated crops depending on the wet and dry seasons. Dry, corn, with wheat every few years to turn the soil. Wet, coffee and rice.
With everything still so dry, the traditional midsummer celebration, which involves bonfires and fireworks, is incredibly dangerous— So, naturally, we went ahead and did it anyway, and I’m fairly certain we only nearly burned the forest down twice in my lifetime. There was always a large fire in the middle of town with fireworks and vendors selling all kinds of foods, and families would have bonfires in their backyards where the adults would sit around and eat and talk and their kids would jump over the fire and shoot fireworks off and generally just tempt burns all night. Much later at night, once the parents had finally retreated to bed, we would go out into the forest to the river, and use the large rocks there to construct fire pits to start our own fires once again. We would swim if the river was high enough, and drink and smoke whether it was high enough or not, and set off whatever fireworks we hadn’t yet set off in town. How we never managed to drown or otherwise kill ourselves is a mystery I doubt I’ll ever solve.
I’m not writing this out of nostalgia— Honestly, I don’t miss the burns. I’m writing it because anything is better to think about than life in this ward. The sheer routine here is starting to get on my nerves. Wake up, take your pills, breakfast with the other patients who are fascinating to watch but a pain to try to speak to— which is unfortunate, because Kitt’s trying socialization therapy with me, which means I have to deal with groups of these nutcases. Everyone is so… trusting. Open. They actually like talking about their issues! The guy who doesn’t feel better until he’s destroying something: his house, his relationships, himself. The woman dealing with bipolar disorder, some days smiling and effervescent and speaking with her squeaky voice that drives me up walls, other days flat and unsmiling and giving me dirty looks if I watch her too openly for too long. The woman who needs attention and can only get it through increasingly reckless stunts— her, her I like. She’s easy to wind up, and once you get her going you can derail the entire session quick enough. The man who’s convinced he’s being watched, who keeps smiling sadly and shaking his head and bemoaning our ignorance toward this power that’s controlling our every move. The soldier with PTSD who watches me far too closely.
The list goes on and on. There are more people in this ward than I’d expect. A lot of them have stress related issues. That’s less surprising.
I really hate these group therapies. I don’t want to talk to them any more than I want to talk to you, doctor. And they keep trying to call me Al. I abhor Al. Al is a really unfortunate, really uncreative nickname, and reckless keeps calling me it, probably to get even for me setting her off all the time.
Dr. Rhodes, how much longer am I going to have to tolerate this? Look at this: Four days and I’m already whining. Do you really want to see how much I can complain in a week’s time?
TS: May 30th, 2170, 8:28:47
Giving in, mon sembable? Regrettable— where’s that fighting spirit that earned you your Holy Book? I have no interest in listening to the people who had me committed like some sort of madman. I’ll bide my time here, uphold whatever pretense I need to to appear to be “recovering,” and then get out as soon as humanly possible.
Kitt’s just trying to do her job? Slavers just try to do their job. Occupation isn’t an excuse.
Don’t give up yet, hypocrite lecteur.
> U: BN
TS: May 28th, 2170, 20:12:06
How terribly immature would it be on my part to type “HAHAHA I WIN”?
I’m still a minor, I believe I can get away with it, so: HAHAHA I WIN.
The Systems Alliance laws on rights of minor mental patients are—were non-existent, and as such the court had no choice but to adjust the current laws for adults to my age. The current law only allows for involuntary commitment for a maximum of two weeks, after which the patient must be either transported back to their country or colony of origin for continued treatment, or prove that they are stable enough to end the need for involuntary commitment, even if that does result in placement in a less secure ward. Furthermore— and this is my favorite part— I always had the right to legal counsel at that first hearing that resulted in the involuntary commitment order and could have challenged it, as well as the second hearing that resulted in the extension past the first 72 hours.
Strange how no one mentioned that to me.
Of course, being a minor, most of this information would have been given to my legal guardian, which, as my parents are quite dead at the moment, would have to be appointed to me by the court. Which they never did as I was originally taken in as a ward of that court, and thus that status was never changed thanks largely to the confusion the Mindoir committee and my own commitment order by two different psychologists caused. Naturally, they had to cover that oversight right quick, and a social worker has been assigned to be my legal guardian for now, a Dr. Pravin Rhodes. Holds a doctorate in social work, apparently has published several monographs about evolving social roles in newly established colonies and others on developing human-alien relationships in the mass effect age. He’s a decent, educated fellow, soft spoken with a thick English accent, wears clothes that are terribly out of date and seems completely oblivious to that fact.
He also knows quite a bit about the laws concerning involuntary commitment for a man who’s life work doesn’t seem to come close to abnormal psychology. It wasn’t difficult to convince him that I was quite sane— or, well, sane enough that I don’t warrant involuntary commitment and treatment. Both yours and Yorkey’s testimony that I was still suffering from some acute stress disorder and possibly a brief psychotic episode brought on by the stress managed to sway him into asking that I still be held in an open ward at the psych house.
So that’s where I am now. The best part of the deal is that I was allowed my omni-tool back— I have a few things I need to check up on now that I’m not limited to that damn datapad. I still am not allowed anything that can begin to resemble a weapon. Believe it or not, I have no desire to attack at least half of the people around me, and only occasionally think of hanging myself off the corners of these doors.
For the record, doctor: That was a joke.
I’m not currently homicidal or suicidal.
Please calm down.
Dr. Rhodes spoke to me after the hearing that got me moved here, told me he believed I would normally be fine outside of the psych ward, but between the anti psychotics I’ve been on and the current maelstrom of laws I’ve been placed in the middle of, it’d be for the best if I cooled my heels in the open ward for a while and did my best to convince the psychologists that I was fine. Then, he promised, he’d sort out the issues concerning possible placement for me away from the station (he did not say foster care, interestingly enough) as well as (and he broached this topic lightly) what could be done about the estates and any assets I inherited from my parents after their deaths.
I would mention Seneca now, but that would probably only complicate things further.
For now, I’ll take his advice and work more on looking like the innocent flower, and less on being the snake beneath it.
> U: L /PE
TS: May 25th, 2170, 00:41:20
No need to justify yourself to me— I fully endorse any means to get even with the doctors here.
Although I do suggest you drop the “thou shall not” and lie if she specifically asks about the swallowing. If anyone finds out you’re not taking the medication as directed, the nurses will check your mouth after the rounds to see if you did swallow them. Or even turn back to the shots on occasion.
I now endure both indignities.
Good luck. Kitt isn’t quite as stupid as she looks.
> U: L /PE
TS: May 25th, 2170, 00:20:18
No answer today on your holy book, you were not allowed to eat in the cafeteria, and— well, she, at least, never gave an answer to your request to keep your drawing supplies, so technically they did not deceive you there. Watch what others say, mon semblable, or don’t say for that matter. (You’ll have to thank Kitt for adding that transcript to your journal. Saves me the trouble of having to find it through another means.)
Really, is it deceit if you lie to avoid having something forced upon you beyond your will? I’m sure your god will understand. Don’t waste your time feeling guilty.
She certainly does not feel guilty about what she does to you.
TS: May 23rd, 2170, 09:13:51
Arcturus Stream / Arcturus / Arcturus Station
Doctor, I remember. I didn’t just attack a slaver; I killed him.
Valerija and I had been cutting through an alley, and there had been a Batarian taking care of his business alone. We all but ran over him when we turned a corner— cowardice, perhaps, stopped him from venturing deeper into the space. His mistake. Before he could even get his gun, I had been on him. I cut his throat, doctor. I’ve never done that before, so I was naturally clumsy. It wasn’t one clean cut, but several cuts before I got it right. Kind of like sawing.
Batarians, like humans, have a multitude of essential arteries in their neck, I learned. Gods, he bled everywhere.
You know what the best part is, doctor? I know he isn’t the only one I killed. He can’t be, because I remember other moments that felt like it, but… I’ve always known I killed on Mindoir, but the specifics had eluded me. They’re just starting to come back.
We both know I was covered in blood when the marines found me, some of it mine from that graze on my leg and the legion of cuts on my face, and some of it was Valerija’s from trying to stop her bleeding, but not all of it came from the two of us. And I remember cleaning that knife repeatedly. That knife had been my mother’s— I’m sure both my parents took the guns, because they weren’t in the house when I looked for them. Just my mother’s mean combat knife. In a gun fight, they wouldn’t have thought to take it.
At least one of those kills are mine. I hope I remember more. I hope I remember five.
Did I seriously just type that?
> U: L /PE
TS: May 23rd, 2170, 02:08:12
Arcturus Stream / Arcturus / Arcturus Station
Ira furor brevis est, and you assume I wanted to stop myself from hitting that senator. Though this be madness, there is method in’t— if I can hide behind said insanity to accomplish something inexcusable sane, then I will do so. It’s no fun being mad if you can’t abuse it.
But try me, hypocrite lecteur. I haven’t shut you out yet… although it seems your doctor may yet do so for me.
Vale, mon semblable.