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Habit Part 1: Genesis (novel excerpt)

Jaden Wright, ’24
Jaden Wright, 24


“So, Ross, was it?” Said the Interrogation Officer. He was reading off of a piece of paper; it was full of statistics and information which he held in his paw, “Tell me, what business did you and your little ‘Rebels’ have at the recent election ceremony?” The Officer spoke briefly; a mild hint of disgust could be  heard in his voice.
“Well firstly, I didn’t give you permission to call me by that name.” The fox sat in a chair clumsily; they were shrouded in darkness, not too far away from the Officer who was sitting on the opposite side of the room, an iron table separating the two. “I don’t go by that name anymore.”  Ross notices the sheet of paper the Officer was holding, “And all that legal identification crap ain’t mean jack to me buddy.” They leaned forward in their seat; the light from a dimly lit ceiling fan illuminated their face, starting with the tip of their snout, moving backwards and gradually revealing the entirety of their body. The Officer spoke, seeming to find the rebellious fox’s attitude annoying,
“Right…. and what about the election? Why did you delinquents attack the ceremony?” The Officer sat forward in his seat as well, clasping his paws together with deep interest. Ross however, scoffed and stared off to the side.
The room was filled with an eerie smog; it was less of a room and more like some black inky forest from a fantasy story. The Officer groaned with impatience; his ears twitched, still waiting on the fox’s reply,
“I’ll have you know, I’ve dealt with your kind before. Snot-nosed boys like you don’t scare me, they get on my nerves.” Ross, instead of replying, yawns and continues to avoid making eye contact. The impatience in the Officer’s face was a lot more discernible at this point,
“Stop playing games with me kid. You don’t know how much trouble you’re in right now do you?” There was a faint growl in his voice now, “Just tell me what I need to know and this’ll be a lot easier.” Ross continued to ignore the Officer’s request. After about three minutes of silence; however, he yells at the Officer in a sudden outburst,
“I ain’t tellin you or your tyrants anything!” Ross slammed his paw down on the table in anger. He must’ve done so too hard, because soon after he held it in pain. The Officer flinched, nearly falling out of his chair even. He caught himself and presumed his posture as if nothing had happened. Ross despite this, continued to rant, “We barely had any freedom before the election ya know. In case you haven’t noticed, that woman doesn’t care about anything other than herself and power.” Ross made his disapproval blatantly clear. The Officer tries to speak but Ross cuts him off, “You of anyone should know. How come the adults in this day and age are the immature ones huh? The previous two candidates that we elected ruined the freedom people in the past fought so hard to gain.” Ross continued to spout despite his claim to keep his mouth shut, “If we screw up this election then we might as well be offering ourselves up to hell-” The Officer interrupts Ross,
“And what makes you think that this century’s candidate is such a horrible choice eh?” He leaned back in his chair, finding Ross’s tantrum to be rather amusing, “You still haven’t answered my question.” Ross’s face grew furious with anger,
“What rock are you living under!? Have you not heard what she’s been saying on LIVE television!? All of the riots and protests!?” Ross questioned in a raised tone. He started to speak again but just as he opened his mouth the Officer stood up with an elongated sigh.
“We’re done here. You had your chance to tell us what we wanted to know. You couldn’t even do that. Don’t think we’ll be letting you go anytime soon kid, You’ll be here for a while.” He turned to the iron door which served as the only entrance and exit for the room. Ross stood up and hurried towards the Officer, grabbing his arm aggressively as he stepped out of the cell,
“Hey! Don’t just leave like that! Answer my question!” Ross stared at him in a mix of emotions. The Officer looked back at the young fox; his gaze was sharp, like a well polished blade, full of hatred and anger. He jerks his arm away roughly, causing Ross to lose his balance and fall backwards into the interrogation room with a thud as he hits the floor.
“I hope your kind gets what they deserve.” The Officer murmured before slamming the door in Ross’s face, locking it behind himself to ensure he wouldn’t be able to escape.
A cloud of resentment and hostility filled the room. That was the last thing Ross would hear for a while. With the Officer gone, the dark emptiness of the cold metallic box seemed more apparent. Ross was left with nothing but his thoughts to keep him company. The Officer’s words rang in his head like a church bell, “I hope your kind gets what they deserve.” he scoffed, kicking a chair across the room out of frustration. It let out an ear piercing screech as it slid across the metal floor and hit the wall, tipping over and falling onto its side,
“I’ll show all of em. Someone has to fix this crap.” Ross sat down in the other chair that was still upright, putting his feet up on the table and closing his eyes. He thought about escaping, getting back to the semi-free world he lived in once before; then, eventually,

He fell asleep.

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