Dedication: For Sam.
"What was your name?"
"Before Adam? Not a man among us can recall."
Once, I was not Adam.
When I first awoke on the slab of my creation to look upon the face of my Mother, there was a crying voice in my mind that found horror in the sight of a demon's arm grafted to the spot where a weak human appendage used to be. It cringed at the knowledge that scavaged muscle and tissue was now delicately intervowen to its nervous system. At the sight of Mother, it rebelled further. Even as my own mind made the connection between Professor Walsh and my own creation, the voice produced images of another time, and another woman.
A woman with a soft lap and gentle hands. A woman whose touch brought relief and whose scent was comfort. A voice that had first been heard when filtered through the womb and amniotic fluid. The voice insisted that *this* was Mother. It insisted that the true names for *my* Mother were 'Betrayer' or 'Murderer'.
So I killed her, and the voice was silenced. As the crumpled body hit the floor, I stated my victory. Life left that shambling bag of blood, bone, and instinct, and what was left was mine to improve upon. And as she had named me, so I named her.
My Mother, my first victory.
Leaving the Initiative was simple. Human guards were fallable and easily distracted. No match for me.
But the voice returned.
It spoke of things like the sounds of loons on a lake in autumn. Older sisters who hogged the bathrooms and used shampoos that smelled flowery and weird. Long classes that began early in the morning and ended late in the afternoon. Hockey games against friends that were both playful and competitive. Battered paperback books that could be jammed into back pockets. The hard drive of music in clubs that stank of sweat and beer. The welcome smell of clean laundry. Dogs that flopped down and panted after a long session of catch. Fathers who yelled at radio announcers while the car idled at red lights.
I walked faster, but the voice continued.
Sex. The Mets. Bottled water. Baseball bats. Hawaiian shirts. Dirty socks. Boy Scouts. Comic books. Al Franken. The Doors. Horror movies. New sneakers. Chestnuts. Joan Baez. Bob Dylan. Pizza.
But in all the things the voice listed, it couldn't give its name. That had been taken away, and all that was truly left was Adam.
The voice continued still, until I killed the little boy. The voice began screaming when my hands dripped with blood, when the small hands ceased their final twitching. It continued screaming while ants crawled over the empty eyes and intestines and innards coated the forest floor.
The screaming hasn't stopped yet. I doubt that it ever will.
What came before me is gone, banished to the realm of madness and chaos.
There is only Adam