In the doorway of the cafe, a beautiful windchime hung, glittering in the wind. Amy stared at it, mesmerised. The light spun off the angle-cut crystal. It was so incredibly beautiful.
Striking out, Amy grabbed the central crystal in her lips. Wrapping her teeth around the chain it hung from, she chomped hard and snapped it in two, whisking the crystal away.
She was so quick that nobody had even noticed. The torn chain dangled limply above her, and she bit down on the precious jewel, which she kept concealed inside her mouth.
Outside, she quickly spat it into her hand, and threw it into her soft purple handbag, securing the clasp again to keep her stash safe. Inside, she already had two sets of keys, a bauble, a piece broken off a chandelier and another piece broken off a metallic letterbox.
She didn’t know why she needed these things, these shiny things to decorate her home with. From wall to wall, it was lined with her hoard of scavaged and stolen shining objects. People she invited thought she was a little crazy, because they didn’t understand. But she did need these things, obsessively. It was the true purpose of her life, and everything else was incidental.
The truth, never to be known to her, was in the facility where she had began her life.
There, she had been raised for the first three months in a confined room.
One day, a group of vegans showed up in the middle of the night. They had heard rumours of animal abuse at the facility, and had decided to free the guinea pigs. And the first room really did consist of guinea pigs, and mice and rabbits. It was a sort of front, while the true intentions of the facility were hidden behind several layers of steel doors. The vegans cleared the room of lab animals, transporting the cages whole into their black van stalled on the footpath by the door. They sprayed anti-establishment messages onto the door, set fire to the dumpsters outside and drove off.
Concerned neighbours who heard the commotion called the police, and then the fire department as the fire began to spread to the back of the building. The firemen almost didn’t make it through to the core facility in time, but they found a weak spot at the side by the toilets and axed their way through thick plaster. Inside, they found 20 screaming toddlers.
An investigation began, and it was concluded a human trafficing operation was underway, and the lab owners were charged and jailed. There were many bits missing from the story, and the culprits would not talk except to give one misleading lie after another. Investigators never found out where the children had been abducted from, or who their real parents were.
The document which could have revealed it was saved onto the computers which melted in the flames. They were a step by step process for genetic recombination for a better type of human which was more motivated by financial reward, and less distracted by other things. Several genes had been spliced out of the crow genome, and recombined into children who were created in the facility.
Back at home, Amy added the crystal to the cabinet where she displayed photos of her adoptive family, who did not share her passion. She added the keys to the wall where she kept the thousands of other keys, and took out a nice silvery tray to serve herself dinner.