‘The Alpha Project’ by Kate, Chesterton Community College

The year is 3049…
…53 years after the Alpha gene spread out of control in all plants

Striem Citadel was a glorious work of art; a city of sleek, modern buildings
glistening as they reached into the sky. Every curve calculated exactly to the
precise angle that was most pleasing to the human eye. Each building
adorned with multiple beautiful windows, ranging from ornate arches to floor to
ceiling sheets of perfect glass. The roads were immaculate, not a crushed can
nor sweet wrapper to be seen anywhere.
Esmi hated it.

She’d lived here all her life, which might be the problem. It was too perfect, too
calculated. Plus, there was barely any greenery. Which was fair, given that the
mutated Alpha gene made plants hostile to humans. But, there was still one
area of green: the Dreima Tree. It was an ancient oak tree, kept in a large bell
jar, that predated the Alpha gene. While it was still infected, the mayor felt it
was too beautiful to burn. He had been right. The Dreima Tree was
astounding. Its leaves were tinged bluey-purple, and thick vines had draped
themselves across the sturdy branches. In the evening, fireflies would light its
jar up, bathing it in a gentle glow. In Esmi’s opinion, it was the most magical
thing she’d ever seen.

And probably would ever see. Her father would never let her leave the citadel
to travel the world. He was overprotective, and she’d had to fight for a while to
convince him to let her get an animal. And then he’d gone overboard and
decided she needed an animal who could protect her in the event of a plant
attack. So she now had a lynx. A very beautiful lynx, though, so she didn’t
mind it following her. Everywhere. At this point, Esmi was considering the idea
it was a spy her father had sent to make sure she didn’t do something stupid.
But that was stupid, because it was a lynx. Lynxes weren’t spies.

“Hey! Princess!” a pair of fingers snapped in front of her, “Focus. When was
the Alpha Initiative set up and why?”
An easy question, the answer to which had been drilled into her from a young
age, “The Alpha Initiative was set up in 2084 to create a way of rewilding the
earth because time was running out with the whole climate change, Earth
imploding thing.”

Eedy sighed, “I do wish you would get things wrong so I can mock you.”
She rolled her eyes at her study partner, “And I wish you would leave me

Esmi sighed, lying back on her carpet. She stared at the sleek figure of her
lynx sitting on the windowsill through upside down eyes. The early morning
light streamed into her room. Eedy began reading the history textbook. She
tuned him out, wanting to be somewhere, anywhere else. This was going to
be a long day