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Groupmind

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My name is not Xin, but that is what you can call me. Everything I am about to tell you is completely true.

I believe I was born in the early 90's. "Believe" is the right word in this scenario because my otherwise superb memory (in fact, it was once flawless) only begins in 1997. Judging by the status of my body's growth and the growth of the children around me in those fledgling memories, I am quite confident that we were all between the ages of 5 and 7.

How they managed to erase our earlier memories I do not know, although I suspect they used the same method they used to control every other aspect of our lives: drugs. They gave us pills to put us asleep and gassed us awake. Our food was coated with chemicals that would regulate our appetite to keep our weight ideal. None of these "treatments" had negative side effects; they performed their duty with surgical precision. None of the treatments, that is, with one exception.

Most of our medications were geared toward keeping us in perfect physical condition to survive the main treatment we had all been brought there to receive. The other drug was designed to maximize the mind's potential. It achieved that goal, in that we were all geniuses with IQ levels well above any publicly released. Yet, as I mentioned before, there were side effects.

During the first 16 years of my conscious life, I was telepathically connected to 23 other children - 12 females and 11 males. We shared every thought, every impulse. Often I saw through another's eyes, heard through another's ears; sometimes, they through mine. This total lack of privacy would certainly upset any average person, but to us who knew nothing else, the telepathic link was not an issue. It was a side effect of the treatment that made our lives Hell.

The treatment fused all of our minds into one chaotic super-being, but we did not really control it. Instead, the Groupmind had its own desires and it used our bodies to manifest those desires in the real world. It would assign us duties, often to be done collectively, but sometimes we worked on them as individuals, although access to the Groupmind was always there.

The Groupmind's tasks were typically innocuous in nature, such as using our collective intelligence to calculate algorithms that would predict the economic future of China, or to design a superior jet fighter. Yet, at least once a day without fail, the Groupmind would make us do things. I hesitate to describe them to you, but the truth must be known.

Before I detail my crimes, let me preface by explaining that the strength of the emotions the Groupmind felt are unlike those ever felt by solitary human minds. The desire to instantly gratify the Groupmind is overwhelming. While the qualia is impossible to describe with words, at best it can be compared to an intense heroin withdrawal. It is not possible to distract oneself with happier thoughts, and one is unable to refrain from pacing or self-harm until one knows they will soon follow the Groupmind's desires.

There are times when what the Groupmind wanted disgusted and even horrified me, yet I could not avoid following its will. I have hunted, tortured, killed, and even eaten hundreds of animals in countless manners according to the Groupmind's commands. I have defecated and urinated on myself and others. I have mutilated myself and others.

In 2000 the Groupmind presented us each with something we had never seen before: a small child, probably around the age of 4. Our instructions were to rip off the child's extremities, starting with the ears. I hesitated, but the rush of queasiness that foretells the Groupmind's displeasure led me to quickly reach down to grab his left ear.

As I did, though, a revolutionary idea struck me. Why did this child not run or fight? Why did he simply cower like a frightened animal? Unless...like an animal, he was not Groupminded! He did not have 23 others connected to him, offering him advice from their places of relative safety.

Quickly, the Groupmind told us to murder our child, although many of us were still attacking the children's extremities, as I knew from our telepathic bond. But I could not. I could think of nothing except the possibility that humans who were not Groupminded existed.

The backlash for thinking such a thought was immediate and painful. Yet, even through the full-body spasms that had me twitching on the floor, I could not stop thinking about it. Some people have no Groupmind! NO GROUPMIND! I almost shouted it straight into the minds of my connected peers.

They understood the implications as quickly as I had. There was a way to end our torture. We could live without the Groupmind. We decided to escape. We attacked our handlers, and quickly left our rooms. As we exited the area, the only place any of us had ever known, we realized that we were being hunted by other groups of children. 23 sets of 24, to be exact. Though we had some distance on them, most of us were not fast enough to avoid them. I felt their pain as all 23 of my peers were caught and summarily executed.

As I reached the door to the exit of the structure, which I realized was underground, I saw two signs with arrows, one pointing left, the other pointing right. The former read "Structure 21", and the latter read "Structure 23". In the shock of being disconnected from the Groupmind for the first time in my conscious life, and the rush of fleeing for my life, I did not comprehend what those signs meant. I have now.

There are 24 structures, each with 24 sets of 24 children, with each group of two dozen Groupminded. I have no reason to believe that the complex I escaped from is the only such complex of structures. In fact, my analysis of the population trends leads me to the conclusion that the program is expanding, to people of all ages. The project cannot be stopped.

I did horrible things for the Groupmind, and so will you. The Groupmind plans to dominate us all and in time it will. It wants me too, and the Groupmind always gets what it wants. Always.

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