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Page 2

Chapter 1
Like Father, Like Son

“Gaius, have you used the IEMD yet? You must hurry, your time for mourning is over!”

“I will be just one more minute.” The IEMD, it’s an acronym, standing for ‘Internal Electro-Mediation Device’. Aelius says that in life, everyone has a burden- an issue or problem that reoccurs in their days, and never leaves them. He says that they must be strong, and face the burden, for it is the only way to reap the beneficial gifts that life brings us. My burden is the IEMD, traveling inside, remove the bad stuff, adding some good, and ultimately making sure I am the best prince I can be, one with no distractions- that includes my family. Every so often, they let me see items that were sent to me by family members, in order to temporarily relieve me of my pain. They never allow me to actually see family though, excluding one time. They brought me to a cottage, one that I used to visit quite often as a young boy. I didn’t do well, considering how I required weeks worth of therapy to even be able to think of her again, at least without bursting into salty tears of sadness. I don’t blame myself, at least not anymore. What else are you supposed to do after being separated for eleven straight years- just meet-and-greet? I think not. Sometimes I wished everything not to be the way it is. What if I could keep them, what I could hold onto the memories, the "distractions"? Perhaps it could help me in some way, help lead me to my father, if he is still roaming this earth. No, I must stop, I must not think that way. Our primary goal is to find the Legatus Pro Praetore, and question him. I do not yet know what we will be questioning about, but Aelius says it is none of my concern, and to focus on the task at hand. Anyway, even if I happened to find out, the IEMD would wipe the said knowledge from my existing consciousness. That is, unless of course, I were to forgo subjection to the IEMD, in secrecy… But that is forbidden, and would consequently lead to immediate termination. No living soul of my knowledge, other than Aelius, knows exactly the true meaning of termination, but it is not a wanted acquirement of knowledge. I made a fist with my hand, in order to locate the vein. Grimacing, I pushed the needle in and slowly pumped, feeling the liquid streaming into my body, traveling all the way up to my brain. “5, 4, 3, 2, 1.”

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