Restart, Inc.

 

By: Kit Cameron (phantomangel92@yahoo.com for comments )

 

 

“How could you do something like this,” Mike yelled at me as I stood there looking at the floor with a large wet spot on the crotch of my pants, my anger slowly starting to rise.

 

“We go, and out of the goodness of our hearts, give you a roof over your head, food to eat, and clothes to wear”, he tiraded, “And you go and repay us by pissing in your pants!”

 

It was at this point I felt I had to speak up and explain what had happened, even though I knew it would do no good, “I didn’t wet my pants!  I spilled my soda!”

 

I don’t know why I said anything.  When Mike gets in these drunken states he ignores everything.  He ignored the half-empty bottle of soda I held in my right hand.  He even ignored the fact that I had done it right in front of him.

 

“I don’t know why we even took you in!  You’re nothing but a free-loading, ungrateful little bastard”, he spat.

 

Now, usually I could take his drunken rants with a grain of salt, but that “little bastard” comment pushed me over the edge.

 

“You know what, Mike?  Screw you,” I spat back. “You’re calling me a free-loader when you sit around here all damn day watching TV and drinking while Alexa is out earning the money and putting food in your mouth?!”

 

Alexa was Mike’s wife, and she was a great person, very kind and caring.  I couldn’t stand to see her taken advantage of like this.  Even if she was my foster-mother.

 

“Calm down, Mike,” Alexa said as she walked into the room, “It was an accident no matter what happened.”

 

“No, Alexa.  I have to say this,” I said looking her straight in the face, “Mike you are nothing but a lazy, good-for-nothing, free-loading, abusive, son of a b-,” I didn’t even get to finish my sentence before the back of Mike’s hand caught me square across my muzzle causing me to fall to the ground in pain.  Alexa screamed and started to come towards me, but Mike stopped her.  All I could do was sit there letting the blood ooze out of my nose, and spit blood onto the carpet from my now busted lip.

 

“Don’t you dare help him,” he yelled, “He’s had this coming for some time.”  He began to loosen his belt, but before he even got it out of the first loop, he had backhanded me again, this time hitting my eye.  I knew that if I didn’t get out of here he might actually do a lot of damage to me.  So, I got up as fast as I could and ran for the front door.  This is where Mike’s drunken state worked to my advantage.  He was so drunk he couldn’t walk very fast, and I made it to the front door before he was even passed the couch.  I grabbed the door knob and turned to Alexa.

 

“You need to leave this guy,” I advised as I opened the door and ran out into the pouring rain.

 

I didn’t know exactly where I was going to go, but I had to get away from here.  I decided to take a right and go towards the city.

 

My name is Kit Cameron; I’m an Arctic Wolf, snow white fur and blue eyes, I’m 13, and an orphan.  My parents had, for lack of a better word, abandoned me when I was little older than one.  I grew up in orphanages, and adoption programs for my entire live.  I never knew what having a real family was like.  You know, having someone to care about and for you, a nice stable place to live, and a place to run to when you need security.  This also wasn’t the first time I had been hit by a foster parent, either.  About 90% of the foster homes I had been in contained at least one abusive parent, be it verbal or physical.  It was a shame to have to leave this most recent one.  I really liked Alexa.

 

I had been running for what seemed like hours.  I looked around and realized I was starting to enter the city, and to add to that, the rain was starting to fall harder, and I was already soaked and cold.  I needed shelter.  I decided to find the nearest unlocked building and take refuge in for the night. 

 

I’d been searching for about 30 minutes, when I stumbled upon a gated compound.  It contained two large building connected to a smaller one between, almost like a large hotel.  It was surrounded by a concrete wall that was at lest 20 feet high, and it had an iron gate at the entry way.  There didn’t seem to be anyone in the guard-shack, so that was a plus, and this place looked just as good as any.  I had found my shelter for the night.

 

I walked up to the front gate and managed to squeeze through the bars.  That’s another thing about me.  I’m really small for my age, only 4’2” and weighing in at a scrawny 85 lbs. 

 

After I managed to get through the bars I ran towards the small building in between the two larger ones, hoping the front door was unlocked.  I reached out, grabbed the door handle, and gave a hard pull.  To my surprise, and joy, the door swung open, and I went inside. 

 

The inside of the building looked like the large waiting room of a doctor’s office.  There were comfortable leather couches and chairs organized throughout the room, and there were racks of magazines for reading material.  I didn’t even bother with any of this as I was just happy to be indoors.  I took a seat in the corner closest to the doors, and hugged my knees.  I spat blood onto the floor once more.  Mike had really gotten me good.  As I sat there shivering, and feeling the pain in my nose, I started to cry.  I don’t know why I did, but it wasn’t from the pain, maybe it was because of my stress level, and I think I was having an emotional breakdown.  I couldn’t do anything but sit there, cold, wet, shivering, and in pain, and cry my eyes out.  I cried for so long that I cried myself to sleep after what must have been an hour or so.

 

When I awoke several minutes later, I could feel myself moving, but I was still lying down.  When I had opened my eyes enough I looked up and got quite a surprise.  I was in the arms of a beautiful female Arctic Wolf.  She looked to be in her late 20’s, but she didn’t look a day over 25.  She had short white fur and blue eyes.  Just like me.  She was carrying me as a mother would carry a small child, cradling me in her arms.  When I first saw her I must have let out a small gasp because she looked down at me and said, “It’s okay little one.  You’re safe now.”  Her voice was the most beautiful and soothing thing I had ever heard.  I couldn’t help but believe her.

 

It was at that time I also noticed that I was completely wrapped in a towel.  The only thing showing through was my face.  I was so comfortable like this that I didn’t want to move.  So, I just relaxed and eventually drifted off to sleep.

 

                                                ***

 

When I awoke the next morning, I was in what looked like an office.  I sat up on the comfortable leather couch that I must have been placed on and looked around.  This was definitely an office of some kind, as there was a large desk in the center of it with a computer on the left side, a fax machine on the right, and two chairs sitting in front of it.  I decided to get up and have a look around.  As I stood up, I quickly noticed that I wasn’t in my shirt and jeans from the night before, but I was wearing a white t-shirt, and a pair of red and black athletic shorts.

 

‘This is odd,’ I thought to myself.

 

I had started to walk towards the desk, more specifically the computer, when I heard the door start to open.  I quickly ran back to the couch and laid there, pretending as if I had just woken up.

 

The beautiful wolf from the previous night entered the room holding a small plastic cup filled with a brownish liquid in her right hand.  She was also wearing a wine colored business suit with a knee-length skirt and matching heels.  She walked around in front of me, and knelt down to my eye level.

 

“Did you have a good sleep,” she asked offering me the cup, “Would you like some juice?”

 

I was thirsty now that I had thought about it.  It must have been from my running last night. 

 

“Sure,” I answered taking the cup.  I took one sip and realized what it was, apple juice!  I wasn’t about to refuse this, seeing as I love the stuff.  I quickly downed the rest of the contents, and set the cup by my side.

 

“My, you must have been thirsty,” she said after letting out a small laugh at how fast I had drunk the juice.  She then took the cup and walked over to her desk and sat down behind it.  She motioned for me to have a seat in front of her.  I complied.

 

“So, first things first,” she started, “Can you tell me your name?”

 

“Kit Cameron,” I replied.

 

“Kit Cameron?  That’s a nice name.  It suits you well,” she said as she turned to her right and typed my name into the computer.  Why she did that I didn’t know, but I’m sure I would soon find out.  After about a minute, I saw the beautiful face of hers fall into a sympathetic look laced with a hint of sadness.  She turned back to me and took a deep breath.

 

“Well, it seems you’re with the Barrett Agency I’m sad to say,” she said.  I could see this was really bothering her.

 

“What’s that mean,” I asked starting to get a little worried.

 

“Well, it means that since you’re already with an adoption agency, I have to return you to them,” she informed.  My heart sank at the prospect of going back to live with Mike.

 

She picked up the phone and punched in a number as I sat there pondering my impending fate.

 

“Yes, this is Sara Camdon with Restart, Inc.” she said into the phone.

 

‘Sara Camdon. Her name is just as beautiful as she is,’ I thought.

 

“I was calling to let you know that I have one of your charges, a Kit Cameron, in my office.  I was calling to return h-,” she suddenly stopped before finishing her sentence.  I saw her ears perk up too.  Whoever was on the other end must have said something really good or really bad.

 

“Really”, she asked excitedly as her face lit up, “Then could you fax me his paper work please?  The number is 555-4129.  Thank you?”  She hung up the phone, and turned towards me.  I could see that she was almost giddy with excitement.

 

“Well, it seems you’ve had a stroke of good luck,” she informed me, “The Barrett Agency is being closed today because of several lawsuits that they have against them.”

 

I heaved a huge sigh of relief.

 

“And, you are being transferred into our charge,” she smiled as she said those last few words.

 

“That’s great,” I exclaimed, “But, who exactly are you guys.”

 

She got up from behind her desk and took a seat in the chair that was next to me.  After she did, she gently turned the chair I was in to face her.

 

“We are Restart, Inc.,” she informed, “We are an adoption agency that specializes in helping children that have never had a real home life get used to one before they are adopted.  And, you are our newest charge.”

I couldn’t believe what I was hearing!  I was finally going to be adopted by a family that would genuinely care about me.  Maybe my luck was changing.  Before either of us could say anything, the fax machine on Sara’s desk began to beep, faxing in my information.  She walked over to the fax machine, took the papers and began to read through them.  When she sat down she had her left hand over her mouth with that same sad, sympathetic look from before.

 

“It seems you’ve been in quite a few foster homes over the years,” she stated.  It sounded like she might be on the verge of tears.  “And, the cause for you being removed from them was abuse in one form or another.  Is that what happened to your nose and lip last night?”

 

That reminded me!  I quickly put the back of my hand to my nose.  It wasn’t bleeding anymore, but it was a little tender.

 

“I guess that answers my question,” she said sadly.

 

“Yeah, my previous foster-father was a lazy, good-for-nothing drunk,” I said trying not to let myself get too worked up about it.  After all, I would never have to see him again.

 

“I’m sorry to hear that.” She said as she stood up, “I think I know the perfect program for you.”  She ruffled the fur on my head before walking back to her desk and taking a seat.  No one had ruffled my head fur for a long time.  I’d forgotten how good it felt.

 

She sat down at her desk and pressed two buttons on the phone. 

 

Another female voice answered, “Yes, Miss Camdon?”  This voice was just as soft and soothing as Sara’s.  The only difference being it was a slightly higher pitched.

 

“Misty, could you come in here for a second,” Sara asked.

 

“Yes, ma’am,” the other girl answered.

 

A few minutes later, the door of her office began to open, and I turned to see who the owner of the voice was.  She was a doe, probably in her mid-30s.  She was dressed a little more casually than Sara in blue jeans, a t-shirt, and tennis shoes.  She also had beautiful brown eyes.

 

“You wanted to see me, ma’am,” she asked.

 

“Yes, Misty.  This is Kit Cameron,” she said motioning towards me, “he is our newest charge, and I want him in the Restart Program.” 

 

“What is the ‘Restart Program’,” I wondered.

 

“Sure thing,” she said as she extended her hand for me to take.  She must have thought I was younger than I am.  That’s a common mistake because of my height; most people think I’m 10 or 11.  She seemed nice enough, so I obliged.

 

She led me out of the office and down the hallway.

 

“How old are you, little guy” she asked.

 

“13,” I replied.

 

“Oh, I’m sorry,” she said looking at her hand.  She tried to let go, but I didn’t.  For some reason I didn’t want to.  She noticed this and re-closed her hand around mine and smiled.

 

I noticed that we were headed towards an elevator.

 

“I thought this building only had one floor,” I asked a little confused.

 

“The lobby only has one floor,” Misty informed me,” We’re already in Building ‘B’.”

 

I looked around and noticed that we were indeed in a different building.  This building had white walls and khaki-colored carpet.  We stepped into the elevator and Misty pressed the button for the 12th floor.  It didn’t take use long to get there, maybe a minute.

 

When we exited the elevator, I noticed that this floor looked a little different from the one we were previously on.  This one had khaki-colored walls, and burgundy carpet.  It also had many numbered doors spaced far apart.  We walked down the hall until we came to a room numbered “1214”.  She took out a keycard and inserted it into the reader just above the door handle.  A tiny green light flashed on the reader, and there was a faint click as the door released its lock.  She took the handle in her hand and looked down at me.

 

“Welcome to your new home,” she said as she opened the door.  What I saw inside made my mouth drop open.

 

This place was like a very nice apartment.  We entered into the living room which was, to say the least, very nice.  The carpet was a light tan color, almost like sand, and the walls were white.  There was a tan leather couch positioned in the middle of the room in front of a rather large entertainment center that housed a large TV, DVD player, and a rather large stereo system.  I immediately ran to the couch and flopped down on it.

 

“This is awesome,” I exclaimed making myself comfortable.  Misty walked over to me with a knowing smile on her face.

 

“I’m glad you like it,” she said sitting down next to me, “Now, let’s talk.”  And so, we did.

 

We talked for at least half an hour about various things, mostly music.  I had found out that we were both fans of Progressive Rock, and we were about to start naming some of our favorite bands when I heard the front door open.

 

“That must be your caregiver,” she said as she stood up, “Stay right here and she’ll be right in.”  She smiled and exited the living room.

 

I sat there in silence for a few minutes wondering what my caregiver would be like.  After I was on the verge of picture the perfect one in my mind, I was snapped back to reality by the sound of the front door closing.  I sat there in silent anticipation waiting for my caregiver to enter.  When she finally did, I was both excited and surprised.  It was Sara.  She was now dressed in a pair of light colored jeans, a pale pink t-shirt, and tennis shoes.  She had also tied her hair back with a scrunchie that was the same color as her shirt.  She was even more beautiful than before.  She walked over and sat down next to me.

 

“I’m your new caregiver,” she said as she sat down and hugged me, “We try to pair our charges up with someone that is the same breed and species as they are.  It makes for a more realistic re-raising.”

 

“Re-raising,” I asked.

 

“I’ll explain everything once we get you into your new room,” she said as she picked me up and started to take me down a hallway that was right next to the entertainment center. 

 

We walked to the end of the hall and to the first room on the right.  She took hold of the door knob, looked at me, smiled, and opened the door.  I was more that a little shocked at what I saw.  It was a nursery!

 

The color scheme was that of baby blue and white.  Just like something you’d see for a newborn baby boy.  There was a charge table on the left wall with a rocking chair in the corner next to it.  Parallel to the changing table was a crib, and there was a play pen close to the door.  Sara carried me in, closed the door.   

 

“Let me tell you exactly what the ‘Restart program’ actually does,” she said as she set me down on the changing table, “ what this program does is this, we take children that have history of abuse by foster-parents and we re-raise them in a loving and nurturing environment so they will be able to have a healthy life when they are adopted.”

 

“What do you mean by ‘re-raise’,” I asked more that a little confused.

 

“Well, what I mean is, we will re-raise you as though you were a baby,” she stated as she tried to hold back a smile.

 

“What,” I asked, still a little unsure of what she said.

 

“You will be dressed and treated as if you were a 2-year-old cub,” she said as she started to gently lay me down on the changing table, “Don’t worry.  I will try to make this as easy of a transition is possible.”

 

She gently laid me down on the changing table and gently slid my shirt off.  I offered no resistance as my head was still swimming with the information I had just been given.  Next, she slid off my shorts, leaving exposed in the white briefs I was wearing underneath.  She went to remove those as well, but I quickly put my hands there to protect them.  She gave me a look that said something to the effect of “It’s okay.”  I let her move my hands out of the way.  There I was, lying naked on a changing table, more than a little embarrassed.  I saw her reach under the table and heard a rustling sound, and I was almost sure of what was coming.  I was proven right when she pulled up a disposable diaper.  I immediately sat up to ask her if it was really necessary, but her hand was on my chest and gently laying me back down.

 

“This will be much easier is you don’t struggle,” she said, “Besides, I wouldn’t do anything to hurt someone like you.  You’ve been hurt enough.”

 

I could sense nothing but sincerity in her voice, so I decided to cooperate.  As she was about to grab my ankles to the lift them up, I realized I was shaking.  It was either from nerves or embarrassment, one of the two.  She noticed this and opened a drawer on the side of the table, pulled something out, and closed the drawer.

 

“Maybe this will help you relax,” she said as she brought a blue and white pacifier into view.

 

At this point I would do anything to get myself to stop shaking, so I opened my mouth as she gently inserted the pacifier into my mouth.  She looked at me for a second, as I lay there sucking on the pacifier and smiled.  She then began to message my stomach with her right hand in such a way that I almost melted right there on the spot.  It was such a wonderful and comfortable feeling that didn’t even notice that she had applied the baby powder and had already placed the diaper under me.  This is where she had to stop, but I was so eased right now that I didn’t even care.  She took the diaper and brought it up between my legs and fastened the tapes for a nice snug fit.  Finally, she pulled my tail through the hole in the back.

 

“There,” she exclaimed, “All done.”

 

I looked down and saw that I was indeed diapered.  I was guessing that these were specially made for this program because I highly doubted that there were diapers made to fit kids my age that had little rocking horses on them.  She then went over to the chest of drawers that was next to the crib, opened a drawer, and drew out a baby blue, legless sleeper that had snaps in the crotch.  She slid the thing over my head and gently laid me back down so she could fatten he snaps.  When she was finished she stood back a little and looked at me smiling.

 

“You look absolutely adorable,” she said with a maternal smile on her face, “I’ll bet you’re hungry, aren’t you?”

 

Come to think of it, I was.  I nodded.

 

“I’ll be back in a minute or two,” she said as she quickly left the room.

 

I can’t say I was more than a little embarrassed to be lying on a changing table wearing a diaper and a baby’s legless sleeper while sucking on a pacifier, but if this is what I had to do to get the family I’d been dreaming of, so be it.  Sara returned several minutes later with a baby bottled full of what looked like milk.  She walked over to the rocking chair and set the bottle down next to it.  She then walked over to the changing table, picked me up and carried me over to the rocking chair.  When she sat down, she positioned me as a mother would an infant, supporting my head with her arm.  She then picked up the bottle and removed the pacifier from my mouth.

 

“That’s not formula is it,” I asked with a slight hint of revultion in my voice.

 

“Sort of,” she answered, “It’s a special formula that the doctors here have created.  It contains all of the complete nutrition that a little boy your age needs, and the nipples on the bottles and the pacifiers are all made out of a special material that is enhanced with calcium and fluoride, so it won’t rot your teeth.  Now, I’ll bet your hungry.”

 

She gently inserted the bottle into my mouth.  It took me a minute to figure out how to get the liquid flowing smoothly, but once I did, I found that the stuff actually tasted pretty darn good.  As I lay there nursing, Sara began to gently rock back and forth in the chair, and hum the most beautiful melody I had ever heard.  I felt so relaxed, and her humming was so soothing, that, after a few minutes, I drifted off to sleep.