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The Assistant

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That pleasant face. That pleasant face. That pleasant face. I see it every closing. I pass its realm each opening. The white building with a green roof. The building with no windows. It has just a door, and next to it is the schedule. I’ve been in that building only once before. I will be in there just once more.
When I went in I was just an M6. I was on a trip with my teacher, Clara. Before we entered the door, I glanced at the schedule. Her name was there next to the opening. I followed her into the door. She pointed me to a white seat nearest another door. I stared at the white walls as she placed her opening outline into the slot. It was scanned and she took a seat next to me. She sat there quietly and stared at the white wall too. This was unusual. She had not corrected me at all this opening.
“What else is on the outline?” I tried to make polite conversation.
“Shhhhhh,” she grabbed one of my hands in two of hers and looked down at the white carpet. This was unusual because touching for non instructional purposes is not allowed. I sat for a long while wondering what she was trying to teach me.
“Clara?” A pleasant face appeared at the door I was sitting next to.
“Yes,” Clara replied.
“Your grand closing will begin now,” the pleasant face declared.
“I am ready for my closing, but I must take this M6 to the washroom first,” Clara said.
This was very unusual because I had mentioned nothing of the sort, but I did not object. A child who had not had his blessing yet should never argue against his elders. I followed her into the washroom. She closed the door and looked at me for a while then sighed and kneeled to be at my height. She took a button off of the bottom of her shirt. She handed it to me.
“Here, take it,” she pressed it into my hand, “keep this and do not forget me. I am sorry I will not be there for your blessing, but I’m sure you will be fine. I have done all I can for you.” Then she did something so unusual I almost laughed, then remembered better. She placed her lips to my head. She stood up and took one last long look at me before flushing the empty toilet then washing my hands. I now know what that strange gesture meant.
Clara opened the door and I followed her back into the room we were first in. The pleasant face took Clara into the back and instructed me to wait where I was. I did wait there for a little while, then I went to the back to see what was taking Clara so long. Her lessons in patience still had not had too much of an impact on me. I walked through the door and I saw Clara, lying still on a white table her hair and feet dipped into bowls of water. Her skin was white. Next to the table was the lady with the pleasant face standing in her starched white uniform. What was behind the table was the worst. There was a metal machine with two silver turning wheels sucking the life out of her. I then knew that Clara’s strange gesture meant. It was a warning of the cold metal thing that was sucking the life out of her.
I stared into the eyes of the pleasant face. It was impossible. There is nothing in those steel blue eyes, as cold as the master they serve. The only thing on them is the reflection of a terrified M6. Her smile with her red lips drawn tight over her teeth, her fake skin pulled over the gears moving her, and her vacant eyes are all imprinted in my memory.

I later learned in society studies that she is called “the assistant”, and that she helps people reach their final closing. I did not like society studies. I did not like the lessons in general. I was good at math. I did not really enjoy it. Its numbers felt as cold as steel, but I did enjoy how easy it was to tell right from wrong. It was for this reason, I believe that on my blessing I received the job of an electronic technician, and the name Nikola. On my blessing I also received the date of my final closing, June sixth.
Since that day, I have been planning to open peoples eyes. There is going to be a new addition to our society. There will be a branch off of Fourth Street with twelve new houses. To create this addition, new workers were brought over, and I have started to work on the electricity. The new workers are using some powder to excavate a mountain to create the addition. It is June third. I am ready for the sixth. I have prepared a jacket. I have taken some of the sticks from the new men. They have not noticed. I have them tied together. Tomorrow I will take one of their matches and I will be completely prepared for my final closing.
It is June sixth. I have waited a long time for this. I have suffered through the nightmares for too long. I put on my jacket. I hold a match in one hand and a string in the other. I have a button in my pocket. I walk my normal route, taking a turn at the building with white walls and a green roof. I open the door. I put my card in the slot. I could do it now, but no. I must see the face one more time.
“Nikola?” A pleasant face appeared at the door.
I looked at its eyes. With a quick motion of my hand I changed my world forever. I opened people’s eyes. I saved everyone. I saw fire. I heard a loud noise. It was worth it.

“Excuse me sir,” a young man asked.
“Yes,” the leader said.
“There has been an accident in 0217, sir. The final closing has been destroyed,” the young man stated.
“Send men from 0211 to fix it. Everything will be back to normal within a few days.”



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