Literary Yard

Search for meaning

By: Gyasi

Key, a 16-year-old African American boy, was living a rough lifestyle in the slums of Sigal. Sigal was nothing short of treacherous. About 9 months ago, there was a big explosion from a nuclear plant that released nuclear gases all throughout Sigal. The gases poisoned more than half of the population and caused people to lack the ability to decide whether their actions are right or wrong. Key had two younger sisters, Megan and Laia. Megan and Laia were separated by one year, with Megan being 9 and Laia being 8. Since the society was bad, doing daily tasks were near impossible. Anything could go wrong at any moment if they weren’t precise. They had to walk across the secluded, empty town every night and had to watch their backs every move they took. If they made a noise in a certain area, they could get killed. Key had no way of determining if someone was affected by the nuclear explosion or not. This influenced him to trust nobody and only protect himself and his sisters. Key has a scar on his face from being attacked by a man with a whip. However, Key knew this man. His name was Gregory and Key has known him his whole life. Gregory was in his 70’s and was often implicitly racist. His racism would be repressed by the love he had for Key and Key’s family. However, after the explosion, Key went to check up on Gregory and he noticed that Gregory wasn’t the same. Gregory was spazzing out and was pacing back and forth and an extremely fast pace. When Key asked what was wrong, Gregory picked up his whip and whipped Key on the face causing serious lash marks. Gregory began to scream the hard R and Key, but Key knew that Gregory would never do something like that. Key knew something was wrong with Gregory and he knew that Gregory’s actions weren’t right. This led Key to believe that the nuclear gas causes people to not be able to determine right or wrong. While Key and his sisters were walking, they came across the run down building where the nuclear plant exploded. The building was vacant. Rats crawling everywhere, the sound of one drop of water from an empty sewer was repeating every second onto a shallow puddle, and there was a loud echo throughout the building. Laia was always curious, instead of continuing straight onto the path, she took the stairs up to the main deck of the nuclear plant.

Key exclaimed, “Laia get back here right now, you can get us all killed!”

Laia ended up coming back down the stairs but not before they all heard a deep, dark, and demonic voice. The voice sounded as if it had spoken to crowds and crowds of people. The voice sent chills slowly down Key’s spine and body. Key felt the chills go down one by one, hair by hair. Key was nervous and fearful because he didn’t know what was happening next. The voice said loudly,

“Where are you going my children?” 

Key turned to his sisters and was dumbfounded. There was an outrageous number of questions running through Key’s mind. “Who is this voice?,” “Where is the voice coming from?”, “Why am I here?” Key answered the voice back with a very nervous, shaky tone. The voice responded back by saying,

“Come up here, I have to show you something.”

The voice was very persuasive, and without hesitation, Laia ran up immediately. Key screamed,

“Laia get back here!! It’s dangerous, where are you going?”

As Laia ran up the stairs, she ran into a room that was pitch black. She was looking all around her but saw nothing and felt potholes on the floor and holes in the wall. As Laia was walking, she was stopped by an object. The object was firm, and stiff. As Laia felt it, she felt wool and cotton. The cotton was very smooth and soft and the wool had a horrible stench. The smell was so bad it caused Laia to vomit. Shortly after, Key and Megan came up and were asking if she was okay. As they were walking, they heard a slow clank of metal on metal approaching them. The metal got louder and louder and out of nowhere, Laia screamed. Lights turned on and it was a man. The man had looked familiar to Key. The man grabbed Laia and Key realized that it was Johnson, Elmer Johnson. Elmer Johnson was the president of Sigal before all chaos broke out. Key tried to take Laia back but Elmer punched Key and ended up choking out Laia. Key was furious and felt hopeless, Megan was screaming as tears ran down her face. Laia passed out to the ground and there was a loud thud that echoed. Key charged Elmer and punched him in the face. Key was a good kid, always did everything he was supposed to and was very respectful. However, in this moment, he lost all control over his actions. He beat on Elmer repetitiously and ended up beating him to death. Key was distraught and lost. He knew that Elmer was a high power and he knew that people were going to try to kill him when the word got out. Key found the perfect place to hide a body. Someone else must have thought so, too, because Key had barely gone three feet down when his shovel hit bone. Key realized that there was another body there and the body was Elmer Johnson. Key was confused as to why there was  two of Elmer Johnson. Key looked to the sky because he was lost as to what he should do. He realized that there is the same lightning bolt that strikes at the same time and every night. Key realized that every little thing in the town was repeated at a specific moment. Key stood up and looked to the side and saw that he was trapped in a bubble, with no escape.

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