Dr. Barquet walked into the lab, clipboard in hand. I recognized her. She was one of the most brutal scientists here, not stopping the experiment even if the Subject was screaming. Fear made my stomach twist.

The snake must felt my uneasiness because he wrapped himself slightly tighter around my neck, poising again to attack. She gave the snake a look before saying, "Put it away."

I wanted to flat out refuse. I looked down at his scaled head and heard his smooth voice say, If you put me back in that cage, I'll bite you. Despite their efforts, I have enough venom to kill all three of you.

I had to repress a smile. I looked seriously at the woman, "I'm sorry Dr, but he says if I put him back, he'll kill me."

She gave me a look that said she wouldn't mind, but Koski cut in, "Well then, we can't have that, now can we?" Barquet looked back at Koski. He said, "So is…he still upset about this experiment session?"

I wondered who he meant. She nodded tightly saying, "But he is still distracted with the boy."

She looked back at me, "But this is not the time for conversations. I believe we wanted to try some experiments on our little beast-talker."

I swallowed. I never knew what the experiments were. I hoped they weren't painful. Koski nodded and led me to a scale. He recorded my height, weight, muscle mass, physical features, that sort of thing. He then made me talk to the snake from 5 feet away, then 10 feet, trying to see if there was a certain distance that was too far to converse. We figured out that as long as I could see it, I could hear it. Koski said it was something to do with the eyes.

After a few more simple tests that really had no point I could see, Koski said I could leave. I glanced at the snake, who has curled in the desk. Dr. Koski told me to put him back in the cage. The snake's voice rang in my head, Tell them I refuse.

I looked back at the scientist, "Um, he refuses."

The doctor said, "If you won't put him back, I will."

I looked back at the snake and he said, If anyone but you touches me, I will kill them on the spot.

I sighed, wondering why snakes were so stubborn. I told the scientist again what the snake had said and he studied the snake. He said, "If you can control it, then take it with you."

I nodded and grabbed the snake, wrapping it around my shoulders again. Don't be so rough.

"Don't be so stubborn," I turned back to the scientist, "I'm sorry, Dr."

He waved it off and I turned to leave. As I was almost at the door, when I turned and asked, "Dr. Koski, why do you kept such a dangerous snake?"

He glanced up, saying quietly, "The venom. We use it in some of the tests on the other Subjects."

My mouth made a little 'o'. He said, "Don't worry, we've already tried it on you in your meds, you're immune."

I felt slightly dizzy as I walked down the hall, thin black snake wrapped around my shoulders and once around my right arm. He was longer than he looked. I muttered, "Now what am I supposed to do with you?"

Feed me, child, I'm starving. Are there any mice around here?

I thought of the little mouse. "No. But I will find you something. I'm hungry myself."

I slipped down the same metal hall, snake wrapped around my neck. We had come to the conclusion that he was some kind of Cobra, but with some other snakes DNA mixed in. It made sense that if they were mixing our DNA, they would mix a snake's.

I finally arrived at the door, glancing around before opening it. The boy's formed lay leaning against the wall, unconscious like last time. His shock of white-blonde hair stood out in the darkness of the room.

The snake hissed at me, Why is he in here?

"I don't know. But I plan to find out." I stepped closer, tapping his shoulder with my foot. He jumped up, similar to last time, but this time he didn't send me flying. He stared at me for a moment with those strange eyes, before remembering who I was and taking a breath, sitting with his back to the wall.

I stepped back, careful of any dust on the floor. He didn't need anymore leverage to use against me. He looked at me again, and asked, "Why is there a snake around your neck?"

Why are you chained to the wall?

I stifled a laugh and coughed, "He wouldn't let me put him back in his cage. And he's taken a liking to me."

I'd say you've taken a liking to me, protecting you from the scientists.

I looked down at him, "I'm immune to your venom. Are you going to make me put you back in the cage?"

He flickered his tongue at the boy. I said, "Anyway, you told me to report. I'm reporting."

He rolled his shoulders, and said, "Did you stop taking the medications?"

I nodded and he said, "Good. And Deplle's notes?"

"You were right. I'm in."

He slowly grinned, viciously, and said, "Good. It'll be much easier if you're willing. And you're little friend might be of some use to us." He eyed the snake greedily.

I asked, "What's the next step? How are we supposed to get out of here?"

He said, "Cohryn. You read about him?" I nodded and he continued, "He is the most intelligent scientist here, but he's also insane. He isn't allowed to leave the facility because they think he won't come back, which he probably wouldn't. What he does have is a master keycard; it unlocks almost every door in the facility. Get it."

I blinked at him. How was I supposed to do that? "Where is it?"

"In his office."

"Wait, if he's the best, why didn't I steal his notes?"

He glanced up at me, "He doesn't have any notes. He keeps all his information in his head."

I nodded. I thought it for a second before saying, "Cohryn. He's the man that stands in the corner and watches me, isn't he?"

The boy shrugged, "Probably. He takes special interest in his own creations. Likes to keep them under control." He ran a mismatched eye over me as if analyzing.

I looked pointedly at the gloves connected to chains connected to the wall, "Well then, you must be his favorite."

He glared at me. I said, "Just tell me why you're in here."

He didn't say anything, still glaring at me. I rolled my eyes, "Fine then, if you're done talking, I'll send you some kind of message tomorrow if I can't stop by, boss."

He gave me a sarcastic smile and nodded to the door. I was used to being dismissed, so I walked toward the door. As I was leaving, I hesitated. I asked, "What is your identity? I mean, what's your subject number?"

He was silent for a moment, before saying, "Going to do some reading up on me?"

I asked, "Wouldn't you?"

"Smart. I'm known as Subject V."

I closed the door to my room, taking a breath. A guard had almost seen me. I unwrapped the snake from my neck, placing him on my bed. I pulled off my shirt and said, "I'm showering. Stay."

I'm not a dog.

I ignored him and walked into the little room that had tan walls with a shower, a toilet, and a sink, nothing else, except the towels that hung on the rack. I showered quickly, worrying about what the snake might be doing to my room.

There wasn't anything to worry about, though, because the snake hadn't moved. I moved him out of the way, sliding under the thin blanket and pulling out the notebook I'd stolen. The snake slithered under the blanket beside my leg, curling around so his head was peaking out toward me.

I cocked my eyebrow at him for a second before flipping open the notebook. I looked through the pages, much more carefully than earlier now that I had more time. I ignored most of the pages, but there was something that caught my eye.

Some of the Subjects had a black spot beside their name. I read one of the entries:

Subject 47 went to the lab today and confirmed our suspicions. The test performed on her on the twelfth blocked the Elemental system in her body. Like impulses are sent through the nervous system, we believe the Elemental system that is developed by the mutations works in a similar way. Unfortunately, it was blocked by the electrolysis test. As she is no longer of any use to us, she has been neutralized.

I knew they got rid of mistakes that failed to test positive of their Elements, but those were the babies that hadn't developed lives yet. And none were neutralized because of a test that the scientists did, they failed to take the Elemental gene. I flipped to another page that had a black spot beside their name.

Subject 9 has showed promise in his water Element. It is disappointing to report that he has shown rebellion against the facility. If only the Subjects knew the good that they were doing for genetic modifications. But his outbursts cannot be overlooked any longer. He will be neutralized.

I continued flipping through, but the end of any entries that had a black spot beside there name all ended the same. The subject was neutralized.

Finally, I found an entry titled with Subject V, in the very back of the book. The strange part, though, was that there was a black spot beside his name. Then another beside that, and both were crossed out. I read:

Subject V is Cohryn's first experimental creation. Most children take to the Element when they are younger and cannot when they are older. We are not sure how, but Cohryn found a way to alter the four-year-old's DNA. That is not the only difference in his creation.

Subject V is not one of the four Elementals. Cohryn managed to somehow alter his DNA in such a way that he gave this Subject control over Lightning. That is correct, he has control over a discharge of atmospheric electricity. He can pull volts of electricity out of the air, in laymen's terms.

Often Subjects take after their Element; wind being very graceful, earth sturdy, fire hotheaded, etc. Subject V is no exception. He is silent and powerful. And although he would be invaluable to our research, he poses too much off a threat. He id determined to escape the facility. And therefore, he must be neutralized.

Despite our efforts, Subject V is still alive. The neutralization process is quick, albeit painful for the Subject. Although he seemed in pain for sometime and was unconscious for 24 hours after the injection, the Subject was still alive and his Element intact.

We confronted Cohryn, who didn't deny mutating his DNA in such a way that he couldn't be neutralized. We are attempting another solution for the injection.

It failed again. The solutions we've tried are on the medical records in the labs for reference. We tried a stronger solution with different chemicals. We connected the subject to a heart monitor, an Element monitor and a monitor that shows brainwaves, the lab's IBVA.

The results were astounding. Most subject's pulse simply slow then stop. Subject V's pulse plummeted drastically, then spiked to an impossibly fast rate. Subject V's brainwaves should've decreased then ceased,but they remained the same.

The most absurd, though, was the Elemental monitor. Although designed for the other Elements, we made alterations to the monitor to adapt for the Lightning. The monitor showed a steady increase in the Lightning cycling through his body. It spread through the body evenly, except the concentration around his heart and point in his arm where the solution was injected. When we tried to increase the amount of solution, the power of the Element increased.

My theory is that the electricity in his system burned the chemicals from his body. It also blocked the solution from entering the heart, causing the pulse to spike. It also provided the brain with the shockwaves it needed to continue functioning.

When confronted, Cohryn simply stated that he'd informed us it that no matter what solution of chemicals we tried, the Subject could not be neutralized.

For lack of better solution, Subject V is going into solitary confinement, where he cannot attempt another escape or develop his control over his Element more than he already has. We will continue to give him the medications, as they do seem to stunt his ability.

I checked the date on the last entry. It was dated to three years ago. Subject V had been chained to that wall for three years! No wonder he was grouchy. I shoved the book under the mattress beside my favorite hidden movie, The Phantom of the Opera.

I never knew why I liked that movie so much. I suppose it was because I liked the music, which is extremely different to what we've been allowed to listen to. I used to imagine my Raoul coming to take me away from my prison, this facility.

I wondered how trapped the phantom really was. He lived his life in the dungeon of the theatre, trapped by his face, but in the end he leaves that rose by Christine's grave, so he must've been able to leave. I wondered why he didn't.

It didn't matter though, why a character in a movie didn't leave. I wasn't Christine. There was no Raoul to "lead me from my solitude". I was going to have to escape on my own, with a dangerous Elemental who 's just as much as a freak as I am.

Author's Note: Thanks to everyone for reviewing! I love to hear what you think of this chapter.