When I was born, my parents wanted me to be a doctor. They chose compassion, duty, and peace as my Three. They hoped these emotions would allow me to connect with others, while pushing me to do what was best for the Coalition and accept the choices others made. Unfortunately for them, my Three did not make me a doctor. Instead, they made me a Watcher.

Despite centuries of emotion combinations, there is no formula for any profession. According to the Coalition, there are 59 distinct emotions. This means there are 205,379 possible combinations for a child's Three. 6 emotions are considered detrimental to success and thus rarely assigned, but, in the end, the emotions a child receives are dictated by their parent's aspirations and ability to logically group emotions for future achievement.

When my sister was born, my parents gave her hope, joy, and compassion. My brother received ambition, duty, and motivation. True to their Three, my brother entered politics and my sister counseling. I was intended to round out the family, a balance to my sibling, both caring and powerful. A doctor of the finest caliber. The mistake lied in giving me peace, which, while the capacity and ability to enter medicine was present in me, made me obsessed with the Balance of the world, too compassionate to turn away from the discord that arises when all is not well in the world, too attuned to my duty to the Coalition to do anything but watch the fluid shift and strive to obtain equilibrium.

I speak of emotions other than my own as an outsider. I have never felt apathy. I have never felt confusion or discontent or fear, joy, sorrow, or disgust. My Three are and forever will be all I feel. Duty, compassion, and peace. Thus, I know nothing of other positions. I am a Watcher, unable to contribute to society because of my conflicting Three. I watch, I reason, I try to understand.

I go to college, like all whose Three have not crushed their intellect. Because I am a Watcher, logic dictates I study psychology. Although I can never truly comprehend, at least I can follow the rational of others.

Since the Coalition introduced the Three, the practice of psychology has become obsolete. Now, rather than focus on modern motivations which can only be a result of an individual's emotions we study the past, researching times when we could feel everything and anything, and logic was not the driving force behind society. Old Man fascinates me. The range and unpredictability of their actions, primarily driven by greed and self gratification. Their governments were a mockery, puppets manipulated by those in power for personal gain and not for the benefit of the whole. Duty compels me to express gratification that logic was implemented in to our genetic codes, saving us from the inevitable self-destruction that comes when emotions are allowed to rule.

I learn of the philosophers who theorized on the human condition. How little they attributed to the rampant abundance of emotions running unchecked. The puzzles and so-called inherent flaws of man were simply an inability to process the excess of emotions they felt. Thus, they defined themselves with paradoxes, "hope for everlasting life yet constantly creating new ways to destroy one-another," "imaginations taking us anywhere, dragging our physical bodies along." These are impossibilities; logical fallacies that the Coalition recognizes are misguided. The Three allow us to fully explore and comprehend our emotions, saving us from this personal chaos.

My emotions have me relate to Old Man's ignorance, understand why implementing the Three was necessary. My duty as a Watcher compels me to report those who fail to see the logic of this and refuse their pills. I feel their conflicting emotions, but their confliction disturbs my peace and upsets the Balance. There is no place in the Coalition for free-ranging emotions. It was determined that three was all we could fully cope with and comprehend, and logic agrees with this. We must balance human nature to provide effective, contrasting opinions on all issues, social and political. Such is the purpose of the Coalition and the Three. Peace can only be ensured by adherence.

One brother in my class is not harmonious. Like me, his Three clash, rendering his usefulness to society minimal. I cannot assign names to his emotions, and, as a Watcher, this does not fit. I was given this task because of my ability to discern the forces behind other's actions. This one, I cannot.

I Watch.

He attends class daily, taking notes and fading in to the general oneness of the room. He asks no questions, simply does his work and exists. Shyness? I am not confident in this. Perhaps he has calm, for he seems content to sit and let others probe and explore. It is not his demeanor that troubles me. His eyes dart and watch, seeing such a wide array of everything I think for a moment he, too, is a Watcher. Then something flashes across his face and he is again calm and shy and average. A child who's parents played it safe when they chose his Three. He is not peaceful and so I Watch.

Every morning we take our pills. Suppressing the flow of residual chemicals left over from Old man requires this and I accept it as the logical course of action. How far we have progressed managing to maintain a diverse and different population, the individuality of humanity tampered to a fine Balance. Crime is all but extinct; those who's Three make them unbalanced are Induced and allowed to live out their days in a ward, no longer a danger to society. The pills only side effect is a small, harmless rash of the inside of our wrists.

In class we discuss the notion of Love. Mating in the Coalition is emotionless, mechanical. It is done to produce a new being and further the wellness of society. Old Man did not live by this logic, instead mating based on what they deemed "love." It seems odd, basing life on a mere hormonal imbalance. Yet the brother I cannot place leans forward, interested. His face is soft and sad. Curious, I would not have placed that emotion in his Three. As the teacher explains the mechanics of choice linked to love, the brother's eyes close briefly and he sighs to himself. I do not understand this and it damages my peace.

Today I notice a pattern. His sleeves are always long, covering his full arm and torso. Perhaps he has no credit to obtain different items of clothing. I feel compassion for him.

Old Man was motivated by sex. This driving need to exchange fluids to temporarily alleviate an excess of hormones built and destroyed empires. The coalition has fixed this, and several other, imbalances, eliminating the constant need to have sex and allowing us emotional clarity that would otherwise be obscured by need. Old Man's very emotions were tied to sex. Every text, philosopher, and scholar of old attempted to address this problem. Although they strove for explanation and understanding, they could not know themselves and thus, never be complete.

The brother reminds me of Old Man. I cannot tell why,, but it is closer to Balance when I group him there. Logic does not apply to this. I simply Watch and my emotions outweigh the pull of reason.

As a Watcher, I am able to find balance and harmony, to ensure the system works and peace is maintained. This swell of emotional certainty is wrong, has never happened before. This brother has no niche in the Coalition. He does not fit, but neither is he wrong, not a danger. He is not one who must be Induced.

Today I question myself. My logic must be faulty. There is no one, no Three, I cannot name and recognize. There are a finite number of combinations. Why is this brother unrecognizable to me?

I watch him scribble notes, calm and unaffecting. No on else can feel the discord he emanates. No one else is a Watcher. We learn about the great philosophers of ancient times, murdered for their work and new ideas. How close some of them were, advocating rising above the notion of self and working towards the greater good. He looks up and I see something that confirms his wrongness: fear.

Why? Fear is an undesirable emotion, why would he experience it? I have no duty to him as an individual, so I do nothing. I feel compassion for him. No parent chooses fear unless they care nothing for the future of their child.

I approach him after class. I reason he has fear and sadness, and I feel obliged to lesson his discord if I am able. He says nothing as I approach. I cannot be sure he even sees me. He is tracing his fingers along his wrist, eyes far away. I clear my throat and he starts, pulling his sleeve down abruptly.

"You're the Watcher." His voice confirms fear. One of the Three.

"I am."

"Why," he pauses, uncertain. "You've been Watching me." Not a question.

"I have."

"And what do you see?"

"You are not balanced. I cannot name your Three and this is the first I've encountered such a dilemma. You have no combination that I can recognize."

He smiles, a tight twist of the mouth that shows neither fear for sadness. I was wrong. I do not know his emotions. "You wouldn't." Cryptic. Illogical. He touches his wrist, a gesture of habit.

I extend my arm, palm up, a compassionate reflex. He meets my eyes and for the first time, I cannot read anything in them. Palm up, he places his hand in mine. Submissive. I feel turbulence in my peace.

"See for yourself." His eyes glance to his wrist, the small smile still on his face. I lift the sleeve.

"How?" I do not understand. This should not be possible.

"Isn't it obvious? I don't take the pills."

"But that means you have no Three. You're imbalanced. You…" I trail off. I understand why I could not determine his emotions. He has too many. It is a wonder he went undetected this long. His choice, however, is not illogical. Once, all humans felt freely and in excess. This brother is simply attempting to revert, to understand the motives of his ancestors.

"You must take the pills. You risk the stability of the Coalition."

He shakes his head. "You don't understand. I can't go back! I've felt. Truly felt a range of emotions you couldn't begin to understand, let alone name. Being limited to three? That isn't living. You can't be human and not know the whole spectrum. They are what make us human!"

This does not seem like faulty logic, as I'd always suspected it would if I was confronted by it. I do not know if his premise is faulty, but there is truth in his words, valid reason that prevents me from reporting him for Induction. I turn to walk away and he touches my shoulder.

"Are you going to turn me in?"

"Not yet."

Because I do not understand, my duty drives me to improve my knowledge in order to better process the situation. It follows, then, that I should mimic his position in order to detect flaws in the method. His lack of a Three presents a problem: I am not equipped to be an effective watcher when addressing a spectrum I am unfamiliar with. I must level the field.

This morning, I don't take my pills. I Watch and witness and attend class. My Three are all I feel. I continue the pattern until the numbering of days becomes irrelevant and the rash vanishes. My Three prevail. Perhaps he is unstable, feeling pseudo-emotions as a result of a hormonal imbalance and disharmonious Three. I follow him after class.

"I do not find a valid premise for your claims."

He surveys me, thoughtful, and It makes me uncomfortable. Is this how it feels to be Watched? "You've stopped taking them." Not a question. Did he follow the logical path for me to take in order to test the validity of his assertion?

"I still have my Three."


"You said I would feel complete, I would be alive for the first time. Yet I have no other emotions to support this." For the first time in my life, I am unsure of my words.

Unsure? According to the Coalition, uncertainty is an emotion. This means… a wave so strong it nearly forces me backwards overcomes me. My senses swell and I can't contain the joy that brings a smile to my face. A smile? There is no logical cause…

"I feel!"

His eyes meet mine and they are gray as a stormy sea. "Isn't it wonderful?"