I'll be honest, no clue why I wrote it. I was falling asleep one night (after a seriously mad gaming session, playing Portal, which was followed by working on my Portal cosplay) and the TV in my room has a little light that's green when turned on, red when it's off. I was falling asleep and went 'wow that looks like a turret... XP'. So I got up and wrote this.

I edited it a little, seeing as I wasn't in my right mind when I did write, but it still makes some good sense. The last line sucks... but can you ignore it? How else could I have ended it?


It wasn't about what one could see, feel, hear, smell, or taste. It wasn't about anything.

It wasn't about the cold metallic floor. It wasn't about how it clashed with the heat of an invisible fire. It wasn't about the horrid pit in her stomach, the feeling of hopelessness, being lost, forgotten. Nor was it about the similar feelings of guilt, hatred, and resent. It wasn't about the thoughts, or lack thereof and it wasn't about the blank, vacant feel of the world around her. It wasn't about the painful, aching silence that seemed louder than anything, and it wasn't at all about the creeping, gaping darkness that seemed to engulf her, capturing her, taking her from the world she thought she could see, and hear, and touch, to something that she saw as no more than artificial.

No, it wasn't about any of those things. It wasn't about anything else, either. It wasn't about anything. It had no purpose, no meaning.

A dim, yet focused red light lit a short way off. It grew until it became quite bright. I never illuminated its surroundings, and just floated where it was, watching. A long red thread of light, a laser, flew quickly from the light, not sure quite yet where to settle. It glided around its surroundings momentarily, before locking its target.

A childish, computerized voice flooded the site, bouncing off hidden walls.

"I See You."

--

"Gah!"

Chell sat bolt upright in her bed, panicking still from another dream. Dream wasn't the right word, exactly, it was more like nightmare. She was sweating, her head pounding. Damn freaking things that shoot their freaking bullets at her. With their freaking kid voices and there red laser eyes… Of course, that was a while ago.

It had been at least six months since Aperture Science fell, leaving Black Mesa without a rival, and Chell free. Other than that, there had been no one in the enrichment center. GLaDOS had killed them all long ago, and no one was the wiser. The world remained essentially unchanged, with investigations into the 'explosion of the Aperture Science Enrichment Center' turned up all the data from GLaDOS's memory, and the entire history of the tests and the AI, including how a portal malfunction destroyed the center, and why there were no bodies.

Chell, however, was forgotten. Her file was deleted by GLaDOS, out of pure frustration and anger shortly before she was destroyed. There was no record of her as a test subject, or employee, or anything at all. She had gone back to the daily life she had before the test, and had been enjoying it. It wasn't like she would ever forget the whole thing, but she was comforted by the notion that the AI was no more, and the company would not torture anyone else again with promises of cake.

On the other hand, Chell was plagued with her memories. It had been a miracle she made it out alive. A dream of a turret wasn't as common as those of the insane robot hanging from the ceiling at the center. Essentially, it was a better, easier one to handle, because it wasn't giving her false hope. It wasn't there wherever she went, trying to kill her. It was a tripod with a gun. A rather bad tripod at that. It fell over too easily.

And when she did dream of GLaDOS, they were the worst nightmares she had ever had. The thing wasn't sane. It had killed its entire staff, and then subjected innocent 'test subjects' to lies and psychological torture to satisfy her curiosity. Her good sides were pleasant. Cute, almost, but her bad sides… her anger core was a rabid dog. A mad red eye, snarling and growling, intimidating and pointing constantly, if invisibly, to the form of the bigger robot from whence it came. That was a normal nightmare for Chell. That was the worst thing she ever dreamt or would dream.

Chell slid her legs off the bed, letting her feet find the ground, and stood, only to walk a few steps before stopping at the closet door. She pulled it cautiously open and knelt down to search for something in the back. She reached in, and after searching for a minute, managed to pull out a large box. It was a cardboard packing box, its top open, but the contents covered with a white cloth.

Removing the cloth, she sat down on the floor to look through the contents. First, she pulled out a bright orange shirt and pants. Smoothing out a few wrinkles, she placed the outfit to her side, by the box. Reaching in further, she found her heel springs. She tapped one on the disk, and it remained flexible, yet solid. They still work. She placed them softly on the orange clothing. Next she pulled out a deactivated turret. This one, she had no idea why she kept it. It was ominous, and horrifying, but she felt comfort in the fact that it was, in fact, deactivated. Dead, essentially. She stood it on the opposite side of the box from the heel springs and clothing. Reaching in again, she found her portal device. A good friend and companion in the past, it saved her countless times. She had learned to use it, mastering its crazy physics in no time, but had never used it outside of the enrichment center.

Lastly, there was only one thing left in the box. Chell leaned over the edge, looking down at it for a moment, hesitant before extracting it from the box. What she held in her hands, gripping tightly, was a piece of white metal. It was bent and twisted from impact, slightly charred, and not very pretty, but that was important to its meaning. On the piece of burnt iron was written clearly 'Aperture Science, Genetic Life-form and Disk Operating System, GLaDOS'. It was part of her mechanics. It proved that she was dead. She couldn't come back, because her pieces were ripped apart, her hard drive under lock and key. She didn't need to worry about it.

"Where's you cake now?" She joked, smiling to herself.

Replacing each item back in the box, one by one, Chell smiled, remembering each one in a fond light, contrary to the pessimistic things she remembered when first taking them out. She put the box back in the closet and crawled back into bed.

"Good night, GLaDOS, good night, turret, good night, cube." And Chell fell asleep, silently praying for a more pleasant sleep.