Chapter One: And so it begins
The world was a dull lump of sounds and some sights; the latter a barely present thing, something which the person needed to hold onto with their thin, numb hands in order to keep it in their mind. The person felt themselves to be alive, but alive was, at the same time, a concept they were not familiar with. They only knew- the person was a she. They just remembered that.
She was a girl, opposite of a boy, the only two physical barriers between biological beings: biological beings were otherwise very, very different. She smiled at the thought, trying to compare herself to other human beings that she knew. But suddenly, she realized that she did not know much about herself other than her gender. She did not know if she had a name; her history evaded her; she knew nothing. This thought spiked a panic which shocked her into full-on consciousness.
She sat up, but her abdomen was objecting it. A sharp pang of pain flushed through her body, and she fell right back down onto the soft surface she was on, letting out an audible cry. She took a few moments to recuperate from the unexpected sensation, before taking in her surroundings. She identified the soft surface she was on as a bed: something people sleep on. She guessed that she had been asleep. But she was in a structure in which she could not identify: the entire room was a blinding shade of white, except for the incandescent yellow glow from the artificial lighting.
Voices floated through the air, but they were not understandable: whether or not she could not understand them, or if she did not want to, she did not know, but the one that mattered came through just as she started opening herself up to foreign things like sound. She heard the door in front of her open, then shut - and pretty shortly after that, the face of an unfamiliar man stood above her, a wide smile on his lips. He reached up, stroking his gray facial hair thoughtfully.
"So I see you're awake," he said.
The girl nodded slowly, careful not to aggravate whatever it was that had hurt her earlier. "Where am I?..."
"Vermillion General Hospital," he said. "Does that sound familiar?"
She let her mind wander for a moment, and after coming up without a legitimate response, she spoke. "No, it doesn't."
"I see. Well, Vermillion is just a shot," he lifted his thumb and forefinger up, pulling them close together, "south of Saffron. I'm guessing that's where you're from?"
"...I-I don't know," she responded.
"You don't know where you're from?" the man asked, raising an eyebrow, accentuating the wrinkles on his aged face.
"No. It's... just..."
"Ma'am, what's your name?"
She ransacked her brain for an answer, but once again, she did not find one. Panic struck her when she did not have an answer for the man, and her breathing became quick and shallow, her mind searching frantically for the answer to the one thing that circles for the answer to the one question she knew that she should have been able to answer.
"Calm down!" the man said. "Breathe! You're having a panic attack. Just breathe... don't worry. We'll find out what's wrong with you, alright?"
She shut her eyes and allowed herself to calm down. The flustered feeling she had went away quickly, and her breathing calmed down. She looked up at the man, and sighed. "...I don't... I don't even know my own name."
After a few tests and a short session with some lady who kept asking her how she felt, the girl learned her condition. It was called retrograde amnesia: where one forgets everything about their previous life. The basic stuff they had learned could be kept: but in more extreme cases like her own, even one's own name was lost. The causes could either be physical, or the person could have gone through some event in which the mind viewed as so traumatic that it tried to shut off everything in order to block out that one incident.
"...And, for now, we'll be keeping you here for further analysis. But, pretty much, you're free to do as you like here. Just be careful. That nasty little wound on your tummy's gonna be pretty painful for a while," the doctor, apparently named James Segall,
said, a simple smile on his face. "And don't hesitate to call for a nurse if your head starts to hurt. Well, especially your head, but if anything on you starts to hurt..."
"Call a nurse," the girl said.
The girl lay her head down onto the pillow at the top of her bed, and shut her eyes. She had the feeling that she was not going to be able to sleep: so she used the time to think... or so she planned to, anyway. Her feeling was dead-on wrong, and within moments, she drifted off into the land of a dreamless sleep.
"...She's a cute little kid," a voice said.
"Yeah. It's a shame. Probably got a good few dead relatives, considering where she was found..." another said.
"Mmm. Seems like her memory going haywire's best, then."
"I wonder what she'll wanna be called... she's gotta have a name, after all," the other voice mused.
"I dunno. I'll ask when she wakes up."
"Right. Thanks, Lloyd. You've always been better with kids than I've ever been, anyway."
Lloyd Hendricks nodded. "Sure, Doc. No problem."
Author's Note: Small chapter. I know. But I figure it's best to cut off here - next chapter will be at least twice the length of this one. That I can promise. 'til then...
Word Count Goal: 25,000
Word Count: 918