“I’m going to ask you to imagine…”
The classroom, as a single individual, shuddered. They all closed their eyes obediently; they grasped the padded edges of their desks carefully. They began to imagine, as they were told. But they did it all with the air of someone being told to walk themselves to the electric chair.
The teacher either did not notice or did not care. The lights went down, certain switches were flipped, and the electrodes attached to the students’ skulls began to do their dirty work.
“…that you and your tablemate were partners in a crime. A theft. And you are now in separate rooms in the jail, while the DA speaks to you about confessing.”
None of them opened their eyes. They could not if they’d wanted to, and they didn’t need to. They knew who their tablemate was; that never changed. And the scene was already playing out in their heads.
Carrie looked around the interrogation room. The DA was a tired-looking man in his late fifties, his trenchcoat old, his hands older. “We know you did it. The question is if you’ll confess first or if your partner will.”
She could feel the handcuffs around her wrists. She could feel the cold seat pressing against her bum. She could feel, more, the panic making her heart race, thump-thump, thump-thump.
The DA looked at a monitor. “Looks like your partner panicked and died. You’re off the hook this time.”
In the front row, one student slumped. The teacher flipped two switches.
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