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Station 10, 2364, "How Colleen Escaped"

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Mar. 4th, 2006 | 10:14 am
posted by: mirror_odonnell in en_fanfic

This is a fanfic on how Colleen escaped from slavery. She was, at the time, twelve years old and living on Station 10. She knew Henry well, and they were in fact best friends. The ten-year-old Talaxian was a technical genius, and Colleen feared their intelligence would soon be discovered and they would both be taken and brainwashed, like her brother Matt had been.

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from: mirror_odonnell
date: Mar. 4th, 2006 03:18 pm (UTC)

Colleen stayed up for hours past her bed time, and no one called her on it until her parents got back from their extremely long day, and found her still up, reading.
“Colleen, you have to get up and go to work tomorrow morning, what are you doing?” Erin asked her, though she could see from the PADD what her daughter was doing. She wasn’t about to stop her.

“Reading,” Colleen answered simply, and stuck the PADDs back under the mattress. Then, as she looked at her parents, who had moved into a more well-lighted place now, she could see that they both had new bruises on their faces, and defensive wounds on their hands. Without saying another word, she ran over and hugged them. “What happened this time?” she asked.

“It’s nothing, sweetheart,” her mother told her softly. The child didn’t need to bear their burdens when she had enough of her own. “It’ll be fine.” But she knew at that point that it *wasn’t* going to be fine. It could happen any day now that the agent arrived and told the Alliance their orders to transport Erin and Patrick to a new location. These were their last days in slavery, at least their last days as real ‘slaves’, even if they did enter the system later to infiltrate. The Project was transferring them—they were in danger of being discovered. And as the Project normally ordered, no children were to come along. Family got complicated, and they couldn’t afford to screw up such a delicate operation.

For any parent to leave their child in the care of the Alliance was almost to watch the child die. But if they didn’t cooperate with the transfer, they would be assassinated by the Project, because of the security risk, and what good could they do for Colleen then? At least this way they could look for her, perhaps rescue her later.

These were their last days together, and the Alliance wasn’t making it easy to combine schedules. But maybe that was on purpose.

That night, they tucked Colleen into bed, and kissed her dirty cheek. They knew full well that Colleen would not be able to hold her eyes open for another minute. This Ore Processing rotation had been the hardest yet on the child. She was twelve, yes, but she only looked about nine or ten. She had short red hair, and bright blue eyes, and underneath the grime and dirt, she had a very young-looking face. It had kept her with them longer, since the Alliance didn’t think she was old enough to take the test until just last year. They kept records of slaves’ birthdates, but they didn’t really care enough to spare time to research exactly how old she was.

As if the child’s workdays weren’t long enough, to come back to their quarters and read their old shuttle manuals for hours on end--*that* was exhausting. And her parents couldn’t have been more proud. They snuck some more of their old manuals into the crack in her mattress, for her to find later, before they went to bed.

They only got five hours of sleep before they were called to begin their work day. Colleen would sleep for another few hours, and then be called as well. This was why they never saw their baby girl—the Alliance had made it so parents and children didn’t get much interaction.

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