The Looking Glass Cut by tanyart

Category:Maximum Ride
Genre:Horror, Parody
Published:2007-05-17 21:41:15
Updated:2007-07-26 22:32:19
Packaged:2021-04-21 22:48:00
Summary:Join Max and her friends in my short story, though please be careful, it gets quite gory. I’ll take you to a place where we’re all damned….where to? Well, right here! This School, this Wonderland.

Table of Contents

1. Last Dream
2. White Rabbit
3. Baby Tears

1. Last Dream

Disclaimer: Maximum Ride belongs to James Patterson, Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, and several other poems used will be credited at the end of each chapter. Allusions portrayed will hopefully be obvious enough.

AN: Yes, yes. We've all heard about those silly, sadistic versions of Wonderland and wooo boy, this one's no different. Sorry for the clichés, but I just had, had, had to do it. Keep in mind, 'events' will be mixed up as well as added components from both the books and Disney movie. Yay.

And reviews are appreciated, of course. Thank you!

Chapter One : Last Dream

"… In a Wonderland they lie,

Dreaming as the days go by,

Dreaming as the summers die;

Ever drifting down the stream—

Lingering in the golden gleam—

Life, what is it but a dream?

The End."

Jeb closed the large hardcover book and leaned back against the pillows, allowing Max to sleepily roll her head off his chest and snuggle within her blanket. The six-year old girl stifled a yawn but kept her wide eyes open in an attempt to appear very awake. Jeb glanced down at her and gave a soft chuckle.

"Did you like the story?" he asked, tapping the book on his lap. He immediately checked back a sigh when Max sat right up, giving him a pout.

"Boring!" Max exclaimed, gathering up the reserves of her energy that Jeb worked so hard to calm and settle down for bedtime. It was past midnight and the little winged girl refused to go to sleep even though the others had nodded off hours ago.

"What?" Jeb gave her a mock look of admonishment in which she returned with her usual sassy grin. "You can't hate 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' or 'Through the Looking Glass'! Fang and Iggy liked it."

"It was weird. Nothing made sense," Max said, tilting her head in a very doglike manner. Her face was in deep contemplation that no ordinary six-year old would show. "There was no moral to the story. It's just about a girl who dreams about her English lessons and stuff! I didn't like it!"

Jeb laughed, a very honest and genuine laugh. For all the potential talent and intelligence Max possessed, she was still a little girl that was learning and growing. Being away from the School shed a different light on the avian hybrid, turning her into an actual child rather than a human experiment. Jeb felt his gut twist a bit before brushing the thought off.

"That's funny," he said, "I thought Alice was a little bit like you."

Max's soft brown wings ruffled in annoyance and curiosity. The girl leaned forward, pulling off the book from his lap. She inspected the cover's art that featured a little blond girl that was supposedly Alice. Other than possible physical traits, Jeb could see that Max wasn't following along.

"How?" she demanded, unabashedly blunt. A frown tugged at the corners of her mouth as she tried to figure it out.

Jeb, now feeling the effects of reading a whole book throughout the night, thought for a moment before answering lightheartedly.

"Just like Alice, you're forced into a crazy world with crazy people to make the best of it. Maybe one day you'll wake up…. Or at least go to sleep now," Jeb hinted, poking Max's sides. The girl giggled and scooted away.

"The whole world's not crazy!" she protested, warily shuffling the blankets over her body to prevent another tickle attack. She laid down, her brown eyes finally going to half mast.

"Oh, but I suppose you're the crazy one then," Jeb teased.

"Am not!"

"Then I'm crazy," he concluded, slowly getting up from the bed and placing the book on the bedside. He let Max settled in and leaned forward to plant a gentle kiss on her forehead.

"Well, I'm crazy too then," Max said, craning her neck as if to make sure her goodnight kiss was valid. Jeb ruffled her short blond hair and walked towards the open door. As he turned off the light, Max grinned and said, "We sound like the Cheshire Cat… 'I'm mad. You're mad.'"

Jeb smiled and he quietly closed the door behind him. Max could hear the warm laugh in his voice before drifting off to sleep.

"We're all mad here."


Nine years later…


It was the cliff dream again.

It was night and she was running through the dense thicket of trees. Her heart was pounding and her even breaths were slowly becoming short and loud. Max knew that this was the same dream she had been getting ever since she left the School six years ago. Jeb had rescued her then he disappeared and betrayed her. Betrayed her, and the whole flock. No, it was the same dream, only worse. That knowledge wore her down and plagued her mind.

It was only dream.

Her mind protested against what she saw and felt. Muddled scenery in her dreams was suddenly made vivid and clear with detail. Her legs felt sore with each step she took and the snarls of the Erasers chasing after her sounded all too real.

No, she decided, this time she wasn't dreaming. She was stuck in reality now… with no chance of waking up.

Max heard other noises too. It was much more different than what her mind portrayed it to be. She heard Angel's soft cry, Fang's angry shout, Nudge's fearful yell, and then the quiet gunshots before there were no other voices to be heard besides her own panting gasps.

Her flock wasn't dead. Max refused to believe it. She worked too hard to keep them alive. She loved them too much to lose them. And she was too scared to look back over her shoulder.

The cliff.

She saw the ledge and like her dream, she unfurled her wings. Real animal fear took over her actions. She didn't think.

Fly away!

So close. So damn close. The clear night sky beckoned her forward, to be with up with the stars.

Gunshot. Bang.

She felt it. Her left leg buckled beneath her and she fell. However, other than the fall, there was no pain. Max's eyes prickled with tears. No, no, no! She let out a shout that was mixed with desperation and rage. Pushing herself up, Max craned her head to glance at her left leg. Sure enough, there was a needled capsule penetrating through her pants and skin. Tranquilizer. She was shot like an animal.

That being the case, she would go down as one too.

Against here protesting body, she stood and immediately swayed on her feet. If she could make it off the cliff, then maybe…

Max's thoughts clouded and it was all she could do to command her feet to start moving. She felt like she stumbled of every rock and scraped against every tree. The drug was quickly taking effect and Max met the ground once again. The stars mocked her now and was beyond her reach.

It didn't take long for the Erasers to find her. Their blurry images swirled in her visions as she thrashed about. Her body had lost all sense of feeling and sleepiness infected her mind.

A nightmare… she was being taken back to the School.

Her worst fear, her last thought.

And the world went black.

End Chapter.

2. White Rabbit

AN: Thanks for the reviews, they make me happy. Special props for MaxRideObsessed since I royally screwed up some timeline issues. I was off by a year, I believe. Well, to make things clearer, Max is fifteen in this story, so YAY.

Chapter Two: White Rabbit

"In another moment
down went Alice after it,
never once considering how in
the world she was to get out again."

- Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventure's in Wonderland: Down the Rabbit Hole.

Max didn't want to wake up. She knew what she would see if she opened her eyes. Eight perfect corners, four white walls, and a floor of cold slate tiles. She had lived in this room for the first nine years of her life. Already she could recognize the smell of sterile metal and peroxide. However, the bed was deliciously comfortable, something that she did not remember being part of her life at the School. The bed was more recent. The soft pillow and fluffy blanket spoke of the faraway house where Jeb had taken the flock to live. It was wrong, so sickeningly wrong.

Max opened her eyes and found the same white ceiling she expected to see. The florescent lights made her eyes beg to shut again. However, she forced herself to turn her head and stare vacantly at the bedside table. At first, it puzzled her to see it there. Her bedcovers also had a pattern of light blues, green, and pink lines. It was a real bed, not the plain and lumpy hospital kind. In fact, it was her bed. Her exact same bed from the house.

Max sat up, senses confused as to where she was. The room felt like the School, but it looked like her old room, so much. Her bookcase, dresser, the carpet, and even her Mickey Mouse alarm clock were there. But… the ceiling.

She looked up again, finding it distressingly foreign and… it reminded her too much of the School. If it was her room, it wouldn't be a spotless white, but a light pastel color cream. Disoriented, Max turned to where her door was supposed to be.

Barred… glass window with wires.

That wasn't her door, this wasn't her room. She was in a copy, a twisted mockery of a past life she was happy in. Even as she looked around again, Max started noticing the slight differences. For one thing, the room was organized and clean, a state that her real room would never reach. Her blankets smelled of cheap detergent, not the scented flowery perfume that Jeb used. The lights were unnaturally bright rather than giving off a relaxing glow.

And there were no windows, of course.

How could she have even thought she was back at the house?

This was hell, a perfect form of torment the School had ever given her. Jeb did this. Her friend, her father figure, the person she had come to love. Max couldn't bear to look around her fake surroundings. She focused her attention on the flawless white ceiling.

Flawless, save for the wired security camera. Max could see her expression twist in the reflection of the lens.

"God dammit!" she shrieked.

The nearest object in her hands was the mini lamp. She hurled it with all her strength at the camera, not caring if the porcelain shards fell on her. The colorful lamp flew and missed, crashing against the wall. It wasn't even plugged in, as if the whitecoats knew she was going to throw it all along. Max snarled and grabbed her alarm clock. That too hit the same wall, leaving the camera dangling from the ceiling on a few black wires.

Still, it wasn't enough to vent out her anger. It was just too painful to be forced to look at a forged illusion, much less stay in it. This wasn't her home with Jeb. This was the School. This was where the twisted and traitor Jeb stayed, not the Jeb that became her father. She wanted the old Jeb back and her flock. Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gazzy, and Angel, she missed all of them. Now they were either dead or locked within a brightly lit white room with a collar around their neck.

She reached for the next projectile, a thick book from her bedside. The weight felt good. Nice and heavy, it was sure to make a dent on the wall. She drew her arm back, catching the sight of the colorful cover before she let the book fly.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

The book never made it to the wall. It thudded against the ground, ripping pages when it skidded. Max choked back a sob.

Stupid book.

But she didn't throw anything else. Still on her bed, Max struggled to keep her composure. She was still furious and knew that nothing would be more satisfying than making a total wreck of this room. Her listless gaze fell on the ruined book. She was above throwing a tantrum like a child, though she privately felt that the camera deserved what it got.

Leaning her back against the bed rest, Max kicked the blankets off her body. Somebody had exchanged her dirty clothes for a cream hospital tunic. Max frowned. Her legs felt perfectly fine. She ran a hand against her thigh, noting that the place where the tranquilizer dart had hit her was nonexistent. In fact, she couldn't find any injuries that she received the night she was capture. It brought up a scary question in her mind.

How long was I out?

It couldn't be any more than a day or two. Max was familiar with the physical body weakness that came when one was confined to a bed. This wasn't the case. It was as if she had just woken up on any other day. Letting out a frustrated sigh, she shut her eyes. Think.

"You're late, Max!"

Her eyes flew open. Max sat up, twisting in the bed to take a look at her intruder. She recognized the voice, but not the figure in the open doorway. Like the room, she believed that not everything appeared as they were. However, she couldn't help out but call out the name.


Max stared and wasn't sure what to make of it. What was in front of her was a little girl in a pure white Victorian style dress, save for it cut off at the knees and was extremely frilly. The matching sunhat and twirling parasol on her shoulder completed the very pretty ensemble. Angel smiled and Max melted. After being away from and worried about her favorite baby girl, Max couldn't help but get up from her bed and rush over to her.

"Oh Angel," Max said and asked, "Are you alright? Were you hurt? Where's everyone else?"

Max brought her arms out in a hug, but Angel nimbly stepped to the side. The parasol spun idly in her hands and her innocent smile did not falter.

"Late," the little girl said in a singsong voice, "There's no time at all! You're late!" With that, Angel skipped out of the room, leaving the door wide open.

She couldn't help it. Whether it was motherly instincts or the need for company, Max followed her.

Outside her room looked like any other hospital. However, the area was eerily empty, causing Max to speed up her pace. She didn't want to lose sight of Angel and be alone.

Yet the matter of catching up was becoming impossibly difficult. Max knew she was a fast runner and she knew that Angel couldn't possibly beat her in a race. Past games of tag proved it many times. But… Max was running her hardest and Angel was still managing to increase the distance between them. Not only that, but the younger girl was skipping. Max stared in disbelief. With each skip, Angel flew several yards. At first, Max thought that she was somehow using her wings, but Angel still held the parasol behind her, obscuring her back. Max couldn't even see her wings.

The realization almost stopped Max in her tracks. She couldn't see Angel's wings because of the parasol. It might not be Angel after all. The parasol was suppose to cover the fact up.

Max felt her legs start to ache. It took her a moment to become aware that she had been running in a straight line for a very, very long time. The hallway was never ending. She passed identical doors and when she tried to read the room number, she found that she was running to fast to comprehend the signs. Max couldn't slow down either in fear of losing Angel, or her imposter.

"If you think so, then we can make a turn," giggled Angel, spinning gracefully of her heel and shooting down an intersecting hallway. Even at her fast pace, Angel had time to glance directing at Max and grin.

Max swore that she didn't see the second hallway there the last time she looked up.

"Angel, wait-" she shouted but then the words got caught in her throat. She had only a brief second to catch a glimpse of Angel before the girl had disappeared in the other hallway. However, Max thought she saw a pair of perky rabbit ears on top of Angel's head. Trick of the light? Max blinked. She was sure it was Angel; after all, her mind had been read.

Max skidded and made the turn into the second hallway. She nearly fell, but easily caught her balance. When she glanced up, she was surprised to see Angel not too far off. It was as if she was waiting for her. Max gave a sigh of relief before turning into a growl of frustration when Angel took off again.

Yet unlike the first hallway, this one had a dead end. Max could see the checkered wall with a silver handle right in the middle. There were also some words painted on but Max was still too far away to read it. She was at least twenty feet away from Angel when the younger girl grabbed the silver handle and flung it open. It wasn't even a door, but Max spotted the words 'laundry chute' in an odd and gaudy font.

Angel removed the parasol from her shoulder and started to fold it. There was no helping it, Max halted and paled. She watched in growing horror as Angel's snowy white wings shook itself loose. Bright scarlet blood dripped from the feathers, as if they leaked from the end of every shaft. Max tried to tell herself that Angel was injured somehow, but the way the blood flowed from her wings was unnatural for a wound. It wasn't even flowing blood, but thick clots that seemed to ooze like tar.

"Oh, my god..."

Angel caught Max staring and tilted her head, rabbit ears lifting. Her blood dripped on the floor till there flecks of crimson everywhere. However, her dress remained curiously white. Shouldering her closed parasol, Angel gave a tiny curtsy.

"You wouldn't want to be late, Max," she said with a solemn nod. Then she smiled. That same naïve smile.

Climbing into the laundry chute, Angel gave a wave and pushed herself in. The little door swung closed with a squeak, leaving Max frightfully alone in the hallway.

She slowly approached the laundry chute and opened it. A peculiar smell wafted from the opening. Max wrinkled her nose. It was faint, but noticeable. The smell of blood must have been from Angel. Looking in, Max could see it slope like a slide into darkness.

"This is definitely not your average laundry chute," she muttered.

Max considered her options. She could remain here, alone and lost… or she could follow the girl (if it was a girl) that looked like Angel (unless it really was her) down the chute. Max liked the latter better. At least she would have something to do.

Climbing into the shaft, Max shivered as her hands braced against the cold and slightly damp metal. She didn't dare take a breath, imagining the smell to get stronger if she went further down. There was no light, no markers, nothing but black.

But what did she have to lose?

"Here I go," Max said quietly and lifted her hands.

The effect was terrifyingly immediate. Her heart leapt to her throat as she was thrown forward by an unknown force. She slid faster and faster and when she looked back, the light from the entrance was slowly fading away.

Did Alice feel the same way when she went down...?

Max felt the hairs on the back of her neck rise. She yelped and scrambled for a hand or foot hold. A powdery substance she could not see covered her hands and make it impossible to stop the sliding. She cursed and heard the echo ring mockingly in her ears.

The book, Angel's white dress, her rabbit ears, the laundry chute…

Why hadn't she noticed?!

Max desperately tried to stop herself. She choked back a sob that came from horror and fear mingled with frustration and anger. It was sick. She wasn't waking up. Why was this happening?

She was going down the rabbit hole, down to Wonderland.

End Chapter.

3. Baby Tears

A/N: A little difficult going through this chapter, even though it was short. I'm glad to get it over with, haha.

Chapter Three: Baby Tears

"When Envy breeds unkind division:
There comes the ruin, there begins confusion."

1 Henry VI 4.1.195-6, Exeter

Max didn't want to breathe in the smell of Angel's blood. She could imagine what it would be like. The humidity of the laundry chute hinted how bad it was going to be. However, when she tried to breathe through her mouth, the light powder from the sides flew into her mouth. Max reflexively gagged and panicked at the awful taste. It was coppery and thick, sticking to her tongue until Max was forced to try and spit it out.

Blood, she tasted blood. The tunnel was covered in dried blood.

It was everywhere. Max had no choice but to get air in through her nose. As expected, the stench was terrible. Max felt nauseated and it didn't help as more powder clung to her face. She was still sliding, though she couldn't tell how fast or slow.

Her protesting throat closed up on her. Max felt her stomach heave, but nothing was able to come out. Tears trickled from the corner of her eyes as her gut wrenched painfully. She hadn't eaten anything, so there was nothing to throw up. Max almost wished there was. Her hands flew to her mouth to cover them.


Max forgot that her hands were dirty from trying to slow down her sliding momentum. The smell and the lingering taste was almost too much for her to handle. She felt like she was going to die.

That moment, that thought…

Max peered ahead of her and almost laughed. There was a light at the end of the tunnel. How convenient. It was coming closer and closer, though it wasn't betting any bigger. Max's head couldn't register the illusion until it was too late. Her whole body crashed against a solid wall of darkness. Max coughed and spat out more powder.

She blinked rapidly. The bright light she saw was nothing more than a pin sized hole through the black wall.

Max cautiously pressed her cheek against the wall and tried to look through the small peephole. The room she saw beyond was blurry, though she had a hunch that it was a greenhouse. There was green everywhere with the occasional splashes of bright colors that she assumed were flowers or even fruit.

Suddenly, a bright blue iris blocked her view of the garden. Max nearly yelped in surprise at the eye, but then it drew back, revealing Angel. Sighing in relief, Max urgently knocked against the wall.

"Angel, it's me! Max. Could you get me out? I'm stuck!"

"Aren't you late, though?"

Max gritted her teeth. This was stupid, but she decided to play along with Angel... or whatever her imposter was.

"I'm going to be late if you can't help me out, sweetie," Max said, adopting a patient tone she always used on Angel when things was going rough.

Much to her surprise, Angel let out a trill of delighted laughter. Even from behind the wall, Angel's giggles rang disturbingly in Max's ears.

"Good. Then I'll just leave you here," the little girl said, nodding more to herself than Max, "I'll be the one who gets to see the Queen of Hearts."

Max recoiled from the wall, as if someone had slapped her face away. "No… Angel, what are you doing? Get me out, please!"

"No, no, no, Max," Angel said excitedly. Her voice still held a hint of laughter, "You're always stuck, Max. You can't get on without me. You always need my help. I think I should be leader now."

Max felt the hairs on the back of her neck rise up. There was a distinct feeling of déjà vu.

"Opps, I was supposed to save all that for Jeb, huh?"

Max blinked, a feeling of hope fluttering in her chest. Of course! Angel would never betray her. Not her little baby. Gingerly, Max reached out to touch the wall between them. Ignoring the gritty dirt she felt, Max leaned in once more to peer into the pin-sized hole.

"I have a question, Max," sang Angel, who had reopened her parasol and was skipping back and forth. When there was no immediate answer, Angel leaned over so all Max could see was her childish smile. "What did Alice do when she couldn't get through the door?"

She cried, thought Max.

But you're not going to do that, are you? It was Angel's voice. Of course not. Not big-shot, flock-leader Maximum Ride.

"Get out of my head," Max snapped, not caring to be kind any longer. Get the fuck out.

Angel gave another little laugh and nodded. She seemed happy to leave Max all alone in the dark.

"I'm going back home, Max," she cooed into the tiny opening, "I'm going to see the Queen of Hearts, not you. Bye-bye!"

With a skip and a twirl, the little girl flounced away. Max could not believe what was happening. Well, it was strange enough as it is. She sat back on the grimy slide.

And fell.

It was as if the slide never existed. She couldn't see what was going on, so Max was inclined to believe that she simply fell through whatever it was she was sitting on.

It initial fall itself was a shock. After that… well… it got boring. A free fall wasn't a very scary thing when one could fly after all. Max felt the wind rush through her hair. Her eyes started to sting and she blinked back tears, horrified at the thought of dried blood getting in.

She shut her eyes. The wind stopped.

When she opened them again, she nearly gasped in astonishment. Max found herself sitting on a very plush chair in a brightly lit room. She didn't feel herself fall. It was like as if she appeared somewhere out of thin air. Max tried to adjust and think it out, but she could only come up with one solution.

If this is really a dream, then I shouldn't be surprised at all. Nice one.

It was only after she confessed to the idea that her hearing suddenly started working overtime. It was a very noisy room. She heard a baby squalling, a cat mewing, and a racket of dishes that sounded like they were being thrown against the wall. For the sake of her lolling head, she put both hands over her ears.

"Why, this was quite unexpected."

Max instantly removed her hands. Sitting right in front of her in a regal chair was Anne. Her initial reaction was to jump up and start snarling at the woman, but it was really the present situation and environment that kept Max from doing anything else. Not to mention the attire Anne was wearing was putting Max on an uneasy edge.

The Director was dressed elegantly in a style that was several decades old. Even the white-rabbit version of Angel looked more modern. Her dress was a deep color of violet trimmed with red. It wasn't a bad combination. A feathery and decorative masquerade mask rested primly in Anne's lap. It was just as well since Anne currently had her hands full holding the crying baby Max had heard.

"Anne?" Max managed to rasp out.

"Child, do get yourself off my chair. You're absolutely filthy!" exclaimed the Director, wrinkling her nose.

Max could barely hear her over the baby. However, she was smart enough to read the woman's expression. Max swallowed thickly and slid off the chair, aware that she must be colored in old blood from the tunnel. Bracing herself, she glanced down. Her clothes were spotless. In fact, she felt cleaner than before this whole Wonderland ordeal started.

Amazing. I'm speechless, Max thought sarcastically.

"Anne…?" she began warily, not taking anything for granted at the moment.

It was a good thing she was prepared since Anne threw her a disgusted look. Dropping the baby on the ground, she stood up and placed her hands on her hips. Max cringed as the baby made a sickening crack against the floor. Even with all the clatter of breaking dishes, she could still hear it quite clearly. Max wanted to see if the screaminig baby was okay, but Anne's voice stopped her.

"How dare you! I am the Duchess!"

End Chapter.