“Wake up. Wake up, Wake up honey. Today is the day and you don’t want to be late.” Mom said as she flowed in with her fanciest white lace dress, fit for royalty.
“Ughh. Do I have to go”? I say as I roll out of bed because I already know the answer. She has already laid out my clothes for me and I can smell breakfast cooking downstairs.
“Yes, you have to go. All the hottest bachelors will be there and we finally find out who will get to mate this year.” It’s going to be the news of the week! And you are definitely in the running. I’m gonna have myself a grandbaby! EEK! It’s gonna be splendid.” Mamma said barely containing her excitement.
I put on the thin, short flowery dress Mama and our maid Luana picked out and tried to see myself how others might today. I have long wavy brown hair, my family’s famous blue eyes, a smile that tends to be fake and the slender body every guy dreams of. But, nobody sees how smart or talented I really am. They hear Olivia Bethwit and they think they know everything: Rich. I hate how money means everything in this society. Not that I have lived in another society, but things couldn’t have always been this way.
After the Crisis of 3500, the world became toxic and unlivable. Only the rich could survive because they could afford to build these dome cities that protect us from the harsh environment. When the rich realized that, they did what any rich person would do; found ways to get richer. They charged everyone an admittance fee to live in their cities. The rich got richer and the ones that were able to pay their way in were dirt broke. Once the cities reached full capacity no more people were allowed in. No one knows what happened to the rest of the population, but we follow the rules so we don’t find out.
We live in Garmdaviille. The 5th of the 6 cities left in the world. Population 200,000.
We only have two rules. One: All must follow strict adherence to Life Quality (this keeps our city clean and our resources ample). Two: All reproduction is banned (only the “worthy” are permitted to create new humans).
And that is what is happening today. Everyone in the city will gather at the Grand Center to hear the King announce who is granted rights to mate this year.
The problem is that I am eligible this year to mate. I turned 20 last month and my parents are rich. Apparently, that qualifies me as “worthy”. But I am anything but worthy. I still have a life to live and things to discover. I don’t want to be stuck with a rich snob from downtown to treat me like a house wife. I have better hunting skills than most of the Runners. I want to be out there gathering and hunting and exploring like I am good at. I should be able to decide if I want to be a mother or not. Our society has returned to 16th century England for Christ’s sake (I only know that fact from a book I stole from the library before they burned all of our history books to keep the women from retaliating).
On my way to Grand Center, I bump into Kali. As my best friend in the whole city, I love her to death, but we are complete opposites. She is dressed to perfection with nothing out of place. She has wanted to be worthy to mate since she even knew what that meant.
“Hey girl. Today is the day! Can you believe it”? She says basically jumping out of her dress.
“Ya. It’s crazy.” I say monotone. “Can’t wait to be told what to do by the King some more.”
“Shhh” she whispers frantically. “Say that a little louder and the King’s cell is where you’ll be next.” She shoots me a smirk.
“I just can’t believe we get no say in this.” I say knowing she won’t understand my frustration.
“Just hush and take a look at the steaming hot single bachelors we are surrounded by right now. Mmm take a look at that one. Yes, please! “
“You mean Jaquil”? I say with a disgusted face.
“Yes, absolutely!!” she shrieks.
“He’s the most arrogant, pig headed man in here.” I say as she checks him out and blushes.
“As long as he can father my baby, I don’t care what he thinks or says. “She says almost running through the crowd to get her place up front. “See you in there!”
To be continued..
Author Notes: Part 1! Let me know :):):)