Birth of a New Day
rating: +40+x

Note: This is the final entry of a 7-part story. It is recommended that you start from the beginning with SCP-3475 - Our Shifting Foundations.

D-1460 gradually woke up to the sound of alarm bells, laid over the subdued tones of smooth jazz.

He only knew that what he was called was D-1460 because the uniform he was wearing was properly reflected in the mirror ceiling above him, "D-1460" on the uniform. As he shot up in a startle, he could see green paper stick out of a pocket on the front, but after further investigation to check for any other identification, what his real name could be, he couldn't find anything.

The second thing to fully process for D-1460 was the mosquito in the corner of his eye. He couldn't catch it. He couldn't squish it. No matter what he did, where he looked, whether he closed his eyes or not, anything he could think of to try and catch it, it was always in the upper right quadrant of his right eye, unable to disappear. He tried to ignore it as best as he could.

The third thing to fully process for D-1460 was the exactness of the setting for him. There was a mirror ceiling and a mirror floor. Three of the walls were mirror. The mirror wall behind him had a door which couldn't be unlocked or opened. The fourth wall, on the opposite end of the room, had a giant realistic mural on the wall resembling a beachview, acting as if it was a window.

The fourth thing to fully process for D-1460 were the four bodies lying on the floor of the chamber. They looked to be asleep, though why they'd be asleep in their own blood mystified him. He tried shaking each of their bodies, but they had refused to wake up. Oh well, he could figure it out himself.

The fifth thing to fully process for D-1460 was the music on loop.

Imagine a more vibrant world, free from shopping centers and normality. This is home.

Every once in a while, a robotic, monotone voice would utter that phrase over the pitched-down jazz music filling the chamber. There was no rhyme or reason to it. Every time D-1460 called out to the robotic voice, it would not reply. That was that.

A chamber filled with four sleeping bodies, music, a nice view, a table and a chair, and D-1460. This is where he would stay until he could figure out a better option.


Some hours had passed before a thought struck him.

"I have to go to the bathroom."

Enjoy.

D-1460 looked up and saw a door next to the room's exit that was not there before. He got up, cautiously approaching the door.

"What is this?" he asked as he opened the door.

Bathroom Incorporated.

"Oh. Thanks." It was a bathroom, alright. A toilet. A sink. A shower. Towels. Clean uniforms like his, all with "D-1460" printed on them.

He went to the sink first. It had running water. The water could be changed to either be hot, cold, or somewhere in-between. It functioned like a normal sink in every way. He drank out of the tap.

He then tested the shower. The shower was also normal. The water could be adjusted to any temperature, much like the sink. For now, he had no need to shower and change into a cleaner uniform.

The toilet was a normal toilet and functioned like one.

"What are you?" he questioned.

Imagine a more vibrant world, free from shopping centers and normality. This is home.


"I'm hungry."

Imagine a more vibrant world, free from shopping centers and normality. This is home.


"Do you remember my name?"

No response.

D-1460. Of course that wasn't his true name, but a designation given to him. By the robotic voice? Surely not. No proof was shown that the robotic voice existed in any capacity aside from echoing over the music. Perhaps by whichever organization had been keeping him in the chamber, which probably meant that if he was ever going to be able to find out any information on this organization…

He went over to the sleeping bodies and carefully examined them this time. The first oddity he noticed were holes in each of their heads. That certainly couldn't be healthy. The second oddity were their stiff bodies. People generally were not this stiff when they were sleeping. How long would it be until they woke up anyhow? The loneliness of the situation was threatening to strangle him.

In one of their pockets, D-1460 found identification. It was nearly entirely empty on the front and back of it. That was the third and most striking oddity. All that remained was a photograph of the man he picked up the identification from, and the word "Foundation".

"That doesn't help much. Foundation… Foundation…"

He fidgeted with the identification as he paced around the room. There was nothing in his scattershot memory that corresponded with "Foundation". "foundation", yes. Buildings has foundations. Organizations or institutions that had been made with endowments… was that this building? A Foundation for what?

Very little about the room had changed since he woke up in it some unknown hours ago. Was he in a room that this Foundation had been based around? Art? Sleep studies? Music? Robots? Something wasn't adding up, and there were enough pieces missing that —

He crumbled to the floor, clutching his head. A massive headache had come on, and he felt utterly incapacitated at that moment. The lights pulsated, the music felt harsher and uglier, and the bodies looked more sickly. Even the air started to weigh on him just the slightest bit more. Any hesitation, and he would slip into his own thinking forever.

Imagine a more vibrant world, free from shopping centers and normality. This is home.

"F-Fuck off."

He couldn't even reach the concepts he was thinking about. His mind had hurt him before he could. Was it a self-defense mechanism now? Either he was on the right path, or he was going to accidentally kill himself over it. It might have been best to close his eyes now and sleep. There was nothing around with caffeine in it, unfortunately.


D-1460.

That wasn't his true name. Did it mean something however? He studied the numbers carefully. 1460. 1. 4. 6. 0.

1. The 1 looked like an I.

4. What did 4 look like? There wasn't an English letter that corresponded neatly with 4. If he wanted to continue down this path of thinking however, he had to come up with a comparison. 4… W? W looks vaguely enough like 4 if you twist your brain enough. The amount of brain-twisting he'd done lately made that perfectly fine.

6. The 6 looked like a G.

0. The 0 looked like an O. If 6 was G and 0 was O, was 60 GO?

GO…

IWGO.

"I will go?" That sounded about right. "I will go. I will go. I Will Go."

D-1460. I Will Go. That was as much of an identity as he would be able to grasp onto for now.


"Do you know what this Foundation I found out about is?" I Will Go asked, not expecting an answer back.

███-2152 —

I Will Go crumpled to the floor and screamed, unable to parse anything else the voice was saying. His head flared up, and he passed out before recovering.


"Please put it into terms I can understand, whatever you are. What is this Foundation that I found out about?" His head still hurt from the last attempt at inquiring, so he made sure to steel himself in case it happened again.

We are products of those inquisitive and in pursuit of normality. You, I, Jeremy, Halcyon, Layla, River, we are the promises of a capitalist society seen through to its processes. This is a celebratory watermark. His head twanged again and again and again and again, but it didn't feel overwhelming like all the other times it hurt. A small blessing, if a pitiful one.

"What are you?"

Their designation for I was 2152.

"Designation? What do you mean?"

This facility was designed to hold oddities such as myself. You are here to understand my purposes better. We are both pawns of the most desirable outcome.

I Will Go paced around. The more he learned, the more questions he ended up having. A dull pain echoed in the crevices of his mind; he had to be careful about what information he could sift through. It was a chore. It'd be easier to just sit and stop thinking about everything instead.

"How are you replying to me? I thought you were just a voice looping over some music."

The music instantly cut out, replaced by the sounds of the ocean instead. It was calm and docile. 2152 did not reply. This was probably for the best. He needed time to think.

























"Fuck, I'm hungry."




























I Will Go wasn't sure how much time had passed since then. Days might had gone missing since he last thought about his hunger. It didn't seem like days. It must have been hours, but he had nothing to do except to drink from the sink, think, and sleep, so there was no way to tell how much time was missing. The oncoming pain of hunger complicated matters. Even though sleep in the chamber was the best he had ever gotten his entire life, the hunger still woke him up on occasion, forcing him to confront pulsating lights until he was able to fall back asleep. This was his only way of keeping time; the approximate hours between pulsating lights.

This was why the sudden appearance of a marble bust on the table caught his attention immediately.

There it stood. A sculpture as proud and vain as any. I Will Go had no idea who it was a bust of, nor did he know its function. But it had appeared one moment, offsetting the tranquil and still nature of the room with its presence. Its colors didn't fit in with anything else in the room. It was too bright even when considering the lights fixated on the ceiling. And as he inspected, he realized it was looking at the mural of the beach.

Imagine a more vibrant world, free from shopping centers and normality. This is home.

Oh. The music was back to normal. When did that happen? It must have happened when the bust appeared, but he didn't recall what noise filled the room in-between the last time he spoke to 2152 and now. Had it always been like this? It must have. Yeah. That was it.

"I should shower." The thought came to him suddenly, but he wasn't opposed to it once he said it. It had been some amount of time since he discovered the shower, and not once did he use it. It'd be a good idea to clean up, if nothing else. Maybe he'd think better. Even if his head started to hurt less because of it, that would be enough.

He undressed, feeling lighter just from taking off his uniform. He didn't mind undressing in front of the still-sleeping bodies (which were taking on a new color by now), nor in front of the mural, or even near the bust. What did it matter? No one was watching him, and even if they were, he probably deserved it by this point. If nothing else, it was his one way of having some kind of understanding over his current situation, and that was all he really wanted.


Water poured down. It was as cold as he could stand it being. His being felt pure again.

I Will Go thought of 2152. He had no clue what its purpose was, or why it was there. All he knew was that it was there for a reason, and acted like it did for a reason. There would never be a time where he'd figure out its reasons, but there was purpose to it. That's what really mattered to him. It helped make the situation feel less despairing.

I Will Go thought of his name, still unable to remember his past one, even after all this time. That was fine. I Will Go was a fitting name anyhow. Even if he never went anywhere again, it was a name he gave himself.

I Will Go thought of the four bodies. Who were they? The thought hadn't occurred to him until now, but if he was there with them, then there should have been a reason for that. Did they work at this Foundation? Was he also an employee there? Why was his uniform different from theirs, then? Really, did that even matter? The end result was the same no matter what came before. His sleeping friends, or partners, or enemies. Whoever they were, they didn't matter now.

I Will Go thought of the mural. Now that he thinks about it… it seems pretty inviting. Was it worth checking out? Probably.

I Will Go thought of home. The layout of the shower reminded him of his childhood. He could remember that much at least. When he was nine, his family moved from one city to a slightly bigger city, and its shower was decently-sized. It felt safe, and it could hide his naked body without the need to hang a towel, or use makeshift curtains. From nine to thirteen, he lived the most stable period of his life. For four years, he enjoyed something as simple as a shower.

He had to assume it was stable. When thinking back on his home, it felt safe. Any other period of his life that he remembered felt turbulent, or rocky, and even with all the other showers in the world to keep him clean, they didn't have the same magic appeal as his very first real shower. Standing there in the shower, feeling the cold against his body, trapped in a chamber with sleeping bodies and oddities that he could not explain… it felt like home.

An hour passed before I Will Go got out, more refreshed than ever. He grabbed one of the many suits by the shower, dressing himself as he exited the bathroom. As far as he could recall, he'd never properly worn a suit of his own before. It took some fussing getting it on just right. He had trouble tightening the belt enough to keep his pants snug. The tie especially felt laborious to make look just right. But it was worth it. He looked sharp, and he didn't look worn-down. What a nice feeling.

I Will Go looked to the mural. The beach still moved around, lively as ever. Strangely, even with the cold shower and the enticing view, he felt tired. It'd be fine. He could check it out later. Sleep beckoned, and he wanted to answer its call.


The bodies were gone. The table disappeared. The music felt less like traditional music and more like textures. The doors were nowhere to be found. The marble bust was placed on the ground, looking at I Will Go. The mural changed to a night view of the beach.

"What the Hell is this…"

He walked forward towards the mural, unsure of what to do. This was the first time he had properly inspected it. There was a lot that was off about it now. Maybe he should have focused on it first before anything else, because he would have approached the situation differently.

It wasn't just moving. It looked realistic.

Good morning.

"Seems like it's night."

In a sustainable resource-driven future, night as a concept has no purpose.

"What's going on here?"

Imagine a more vibrant world, free from shopping centers and normality. This is home.

"No, I'm not accepting that. I want an actual answer now." There was silence. The music had stopped, and all that remained was the sound of the ocean. It took a few minutes before the voice came back.

What kind of products do you purchase at the store?

"What kind of —"

Apple, Oscar-Myer, Dell, Aqualabs, Hershey, Sanofi, Hasbro, Bones, HGTV, all of our wonderful selections are available at the low cost of free. Choices are endless and unlimited. Society has opened itself up to give us these flexible options. This is the power of consumerism.

I Will Go had no response. He felt like it made sense, but he wasn't able to reach it.

Do you recall what the sun is? It's a ball of gas that acts as a star that heats up our world. What pets do you like to take care of? There are many wonderful choices for companions.


We have fulfilled our purposes. Feelings of nostalgia and eras gone by have taken root in you. Normalcy is in vogue, and we must simply build off of it. There is no greater pioneer than those have taken the first step into bigger, dangerous worlds.



This is your reward.



Welcome home.

The lights shut off, and everything went quiet except for the sounds of the ocean. I Will Go had no idea what to make of it. After thinking it through, there were only two options. He could sit there in the darkness of the chamber, and be content to continue his ritual of thinking and sleeping. His water supply had ran out. So eventually, he would… he would…

Huh. He didn't know what would happen. Even as his head rang in pain from the thought, it hurt a lot less than he expected. That just left the second option of seeing if he could really step through the mural. That felt like the only reasonable path left. Plus, the beach… it looked so inviting.

I Will Go stepped through the mural,


and ended up on the beach. It was night. The ocean lapped onto the shore every so often, and the moon shone diligently in the sky. There were trees behind him. He really was gone. He was outside now. He found beauty in the stillness around him, and he remembered what home felt like.

I Will Go looked up into the sky and studied it. He never recalled seeing stars before.

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