ISOLATED It is the future. Many creatures have not been discovered. You can no longer go outside of your state; that is, if you get caught. If you don't get caught, you are free to do as you wish. The president has made something. . . and he doesn't mean for anyone to control it. Each year, he does a test to see who can and cannot control it. If the president finds out, he will kill you, unless you run away. However, there are more people who can overthrow the government than usual — five people at the age of sixteen, at least. They all have to run away, and if they get caught, they die. DISCLAIMER/WARNING: This book series will contain various death, violence, blood, language and other stuff all through out the series. So yeah, you have been warned. Now I can't get in trouble. ^.^ Warning for chapter 1: has language. Spoiler "Are you nervous?" asks my sister, Taylor. We sit on the couch together. "Only a bit. The tests only decide if we live or die, you know." I shot. "Are you?" "Yes. . ." she says. "Very." Then she pauses. "Wait. How would you know what the test is going to be like?" she wonders, curiously. "I don't know! I just. . . do. Maybe I had a dream about the test or something," I shrug. "Not a good sign," Taylor laughs. Then she hugs me. Taylor isn't that much like me in my opinion, but looks a lot like me, except female. We have the same hazel eyes, black hair color, age, and we are both the same height. Almost twins, except Taylor was born later in the school year than me. The doorbell rings, and it must be the person giving us the test. We are not allowed to study for the test in any way, if we knew how to. Taylor and I don't know a thing about the test however, because it will be our first time taking it. So that rule won't be a problem for us. Taylor gets up and opens the door. After a few minutes, she stays there. Once she gets back, she said she just finished taking the test and that the instructor who teaches us about the test wants me next. "Just a few notes, then a quick scan of your head," said the women giving us a test taken every decade. Every ten years, the president makes us take a test, and no one knows the reason. "I'm Shauna Leveas," says the women. She has lighter, white skin and has black, tangled but beautiful hair. "What is your full name? And your age?" Shauna asks. "Caleb. Caleb Michigan Williams." I answer firmly. "Age of sixteen." Shauna jots down everything I say. "Skin tone? Where do you live?" Shauna asks. I look at my skin. "Tan. I live here, in what used to be Missouri. In the United States, there are no '50 states' anymore. It's only the north, east, south, west, and I live in the middle of the country. Therefore, I live in the southeast, prospectively." I answer, this time with more detailed. Shauna just looks at me like I'm crazy the way I answered that question. "Do you play or do any sports, Caleb?" "Yes. I run for forty-five minutes each day, which is usually about five to six miles for me." She still jots what I say. "Do you do any after-school activities? And if so, what?" Shauna asks. "I go to Band every day after school and play the Alto Saxophone. It's kind of fun, and I like it really." I answer. "I also play the Piano, Trumpet and Trombone well if you're wondering," I add. "That's great. I've always loved music," replies Shauna. "I believe we are done, just one more thing. I have to scan your forehead with this —" she pulls out something that looks like what you use to check your temperature. "Don't worry, it won't hurt," she adds. She then turns the ON button and runs the object across my forehead. Once she is done and looks at the results through the object, she looks surprised and frightened. She gasps. "This is the fifth time I've had to do this! There have only been two that got killed the last decade!" she yells. "What happened? Is everything okay? Is something wrong with my results?" I blurt out. Thousands of questions are running through my head right now. "No, everything is not okay. If someone gets a result like this, the president will kill them personally, unless you run away. I've been telling everyone who has been getting the results to run away, and to not look back," she responds. "And you should too, unless you want to be dead. Try and find the others. Hide." "Shit," I say, frightened. "Someone like you doesn't need to worry that much about survival; it will come naturally. All you need to worry about right now is finding water, shelter, and sunlight," Shauna adds. This is the best day ever, I say in my mind sarcastically. "Go. Don't tell anyone about what happened with your result, except the others." "Just one question," I ask. "Why would the president personally kill everyone with these kind of results?" "That is for you to find out," answers Shauna. Shauna then leaves to go to the next house, and I go in the garage to pack a bag with food, a bunch of bottles of water, flashlights, batteries, bows and arrows, and a first-aid kit. For a minute I think about bringing a bicycle, but I don't think it will be necessary. I think it will just make me look even more suspicious, taking the bicycle everywhere. I put the bag on. It feels heavier than my school backpack with all my books in it, but I can handle carrying it. I just have to believe I could do it. If the president himself wants to kill me, I have to run. Now. However, I think it will look even more suspicious if I run, so I walk. I'm worried, though. If the president wants me, I have to think of places where he would never go. The woods? Pretty reasonable for me to hide in. The desert? There is no way I'm ever going to hide in a desert. Maybe a rainforest. . . I'd get water, food, and everything if I go to a rainforest. Too bad I don't recall there being a rainforest anywhere near here, in the southeast. Rainforests are probably going to be in the south. I should probably go get a compass. I make a mental note to go to Wal-Mart before I hide, and I'm very thankful that I have a wallet with 500 dollars in my bag. Then I remember: I can't travel out of my state. No, not at this point in time. Going out of your home state is illegal and could land you in prison. But I'd rather be arrested than dead. At least then I'll hopefully be safe. I should still take a risk anyway, though. I go to the Wal-Mart that's a mile away from my house and buy a compass. And a foot long sub sandwich from the Subway that's built in Wal-Mart, because I'm hungry. I put the sandwich in my bag for later, and we all know that it doesn't feel that great to run right after you eat. Once I get out of Wal-Mart, I look at my compass. According to my compass, I'm going north. I have to go the opposite way — south — to get to a rainforest. Once I find one, I'm probably going to be safe. I turn around, and keep going south. . . south. . . south. . . it keeps getting hotter and hotter. . . I reach the edge of the state, but I also see what I didn't want to see: Guards.