Dark World : Logan’s Journal Entry 6

Logan’s Journal is a series of in-character journal entries that serves as bonus material for the Dark World series.

These entries are written from the point of view of Logan, a character referenced by Dark World’s main protagonist Ruby R-1042 as her deceased grandfather. These entries take place 52 years before the Dark World series begins when Logan was fourteen, only a few years after an alien invasion decimates the surface of our planet forcing the survivors to live in a large underground bunker known as The Complex.

______________

September 30, 2026

It’s official, no more Pop-tarts. We’ve still been getting fed, though! We’ve got a lot of fresh fruit now, I guess the government has started growing it in artificial greenhouses they made down here. One of the kids said he thought he’d get sick of apples and that they “taste funny” but I reminded him that at least we’re eating daily now. That shut him right up. He’s just mad that the stale Fruit Loops are gone.

Penelope isn’t getting any less scared. I tried to talk to her earlier today like I used to all the time, and she kept shifting her eyes and acting like she had ants in her pants. She assures us that the government is getting more organized, but she’s unconvincing if she’s trying to make me feel any better. She brought a few new books for us so we can keep trying to learn. I know I’ll probably never crack open the math book, but the younger kids really need to master their basic addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication. We don’t need algebra, geometry, or any other crazy stuff down here, but everyone needs to know what two plus two is. The other book is the script of a Shakespeare play, Hamlet. I wasn’t that interested at first, but when she told me what the play was about, I decided I might try and read it. At least I can get out of my messed up life for a while and read about someone else’s. At least the lives of the characters in “Hamlet” aren’t real…

The worst part of the day was when I saw bruises on Marisol’s arm. They were small and oval shaped like fingertip imprints, four in a row. I motioned for her to follow me toward the back where the kids sometimes played Checkers. When I knew no one could hear us, I asked her what happened and she said that she reached for the other half of her banana, but the flatfoot who brought the fruit assortment yanked her arm back and told her, “Filthy orphan, you’ve had your fill!” She said her shoulder hurt worse than the small bruises on her arm. What an ASSHOLE! She wanted some more banana, how is that a crime?! What right does anyone have to grab her like that? My dad would’ve kicked that flatfoot’s butt, you don’t ever grab a woman, or a man, or anyone like that unless it’s in self-defense. He taught me to respect all woman. That flatfoot hurt Marisol, not to mention he called her a “filthy orphan.” Why are we treated so badly just because we survived the invasion and our families didn’t? Why does that make us so expendable?

B-I, I learned in history class all about “racism.” Way back a few hundred years ago or something, we used to discriminate (another Penelope word) against people who had darker skin. They were literally slaves of white folks, which was pretty much what I feel like as an orphan. But down here, it’s not the color of our skin that makes us less worthy, it’s because we don’t have families. The government hasn’t called us “slaves” yet, but we’re the ones expected to grow up to do the manual labor of The Complex, which is beyond unfair! We’re not given opportunity or choice.

Marisol has family, sort of. She has an older sister named Madelyn who’s a year older than her, which is my age, but she’s not housed with us. I guess she’s in a different orphan room, at least, I hope she is. It’s super strange that Marisol isn’t allowed to stay with her sister, or even have any contact with her. She’s not even allowed to ask about her, or even mention her at all. The last time she tried she didn’t get fed for two days.

The only good thing, if you can call it that, is that they finally brought us this weird dust they invented that we’re supposed to bathe with. Because water is so limited, we rarely get enough to drink much less to bathe with, so by now, we’re all used to each other’s smells. I hadn’t even thought about it in weeks, but after I rubbed some of the dust onto my skin and brushed it off again, I felt way cleaner. They probably should’ve invented this before the earth got ruined by the aliens because we were already having problems with water but better late than never. I don’t know how often we’ll get it brought to us because we’re the scum of people down here, but even once a week would be really nice. Maybe we all won’t get sick as much. It sucks when we get sick because no one brings us any medicine and there’s basically snot everywhere. Then they use that as another excuse to hold us in quarantine and the cycle continues. Man, I just want to feel normal again, even for one day. I don’t think I ever will, though. Normal went out the window the day I let my dad drown.

-Logan
Orphan 018, Division Rhode Island

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