Prologue: Max's diaries

Day 1:

Okay…so…here I am…I guess I should start with my name. I'm Max Barker. They tell me I'm supposed to do one of these stupid logs every day. Ugh, right now I just want to sleep. Well, might as well get it over with; here's what happened today:

Basically, today we finished our flight from Persephone, and they showed me all the crap I'm supposed to be living with now. It's nice crap, better than on Persephone, but I'm really starting to get tired of them telling me exactly what to do every minute of the day. So different than back on the farm, more like school. I think this will be very much like school actually. I like to learn, but I dislike all the stupid rules you have to put up with. Supposedly, I'm going to be learning more here, but I think that it'll come with even more crappy rules.

Shit, I'm a slow writer. I'll put more in tomorrow. There'll be more stuff to talk about then anyway – I hear I'm going to get to meet the other kids. Well, good night. I hope Ariel gets fun soon.

Day 2:

I was wrong, today was boring. All they did was give us tours of the buildings and the parks. I think they were trying to scare us, or to make us feel small. There were huge buildings, all signs of how amazing and mighty the great alliance is!

Well, there was an upside to today, if you can call it up. It was interesting at least. They brought all the kids into one room and had us eat dinner together, all civilized. There aren't too many of us, about as much as in my class back home. I don't like them. They must be like the smartest kids from all the Allied Planets combined! And they were all showing off too. This one kid, he showed everyone his super math skills. None of it made any sense to me, but the other kids checked it on the calculator and it was all right. They were all so impressed, as if that was impressive or something. But they all had their own little ways in which to show off how smart they were. They all laughed and talked with big words, and I felt alone.

One girl though, was better off. She's the only one I even bothered to learn the name of. Anyway, she wasn't like the rest. You could tell that she's super intelligent too. And she does use big words, but she's also nice. We talked a lot about random stuff, our home planets, and our families and stuff. Oh yeah, her name's River. River Tam.

I bet I'm just as smart as those show offs, and river too. I just never actually went to school that much, so I don't know a lot of stuff. It's a wonder they even know I'm smart; I never did anything to prove it. I think I'm just good at thinking – I can solve puzzles and stuff. I don't know what they have planned for us, but I'm gonna show them I'm best.

Day 68:

It's been…what…2 months at least? I still have no idea what the fuck we're doing here. They've had us go to classes, learning normal stuff you could get from any public school the government puts up. I get the feeling it's just a cover for something. They're watching us. I notice the cameras, everywhere we go. I saw one in the toilet! They're studying us…for some reason

They've also been running weird tests on us. At first they told me they were just routine shots and treatments, but I'm pretty sure they've dropped that pretense by now. Ha! Pretense! Vocab word! Anyway, I think they're studying us for some reason, and I get the feeling it's going to get worse.

Day 144:

I have no fucking idea what's going on. Things have just gotten worse. I think they've stopped pretending they're trying to help us at all, that this is a good thing. There are no more classes. They've stepped up our athletic conditioning. We have hours of weight training and running exercise, and like an hour a day of combat practice, for some reason. I'm fine with that though, I can at least beat the egg heads at that.

But then they do weird stuff. They give us drugs that make me feel funny. I think it's in the food too. And they keep sticking needles in us. Today, they took away Mary in the middle of lunch and went into the big blue building, the one we're not ever allowed in. She hasn't come out yet.

I'm getting really worried. I want to go home! I don't care, I love my family now; I know they were just trying to protect me. I just want to go home.

Day 315:

There are 7 of us left. I…I…the days, they all bleed together. They have cut into my head. I think they hurt something. Everything…I…I think I'm hallucinating. I don't know what's real anymore. Everyone else has taken it worse than me. Some just died from the pain. Some went into the building and never game out. They're killing us all, one by one. I think my head's going to explode! I have to think about this. I have to make this make sense.

Things keep happening. I don't know why. Randomly in the day, things will start to move. Whenever it happens, people scream. Sometimes you can see light in the weirdest of places, like jumping blue sparks. I thought they weren't real, until one day Owen was consumed, electrocuted it looked like. I think we're doing it. I don't know how. Maybe it's their fault. I wish they'd stop.

Day ?:

The pain never goes away, it won't go away. It just keeps coming and coming, always bigger. And then they come. Two by two, hands of blue. They hurt me. I want it to stop. Just kill me! But, no, they want me. They want me to do something. They won't let me die. I thought they wanted river too. I thought we had made it! But no, she's dead too now. Just another body in the pile.

Day…Year 4...Sometime...I don't fucking care anymore:

I can control it

Everyone else is either dead or totally batshit insane

But I got it, today, and everything became clear

I know why they brought us here

They wanted me to be able to control this great force

And now I can

And they're going to pay

They're all going to die