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Solarites Ch - 9

I couldn't cry, the tears refused to leave my eyes as my face burned. There was nothing to say as she lay motionless, like a doll. An empty doll now, nothing left on the inside; no life, no soul, no Fei. Even knowing that I couldn't leave. I wouldn't until I saw that spark in her eyes and her perky voice going at 500 mph about nothing in particular. It wasn't until Raven stopped sobbing and pried me away.

"Let's go, Pirate. Nothing to see here," she whispered and led me away. I wanted to shrug her away, but Raven was shaking drastically and needed me to support her back to town. I sighed and looked back to see the white blood stained clothes and rustic gold hair laying there. Her horns were gray and faded, unlike the original lavender.

The wind gushed by and Fei disintegrated along with it. I turn back around, walking aimlessly to the town. My mind was empty and slow; only processing the most basic things. Walking, staring blankly ahead, and stopping before Ace as he then helped us to the mess hall.

He sat us down at his table in the back and fetched us something to eat. He then gave the room a quick look around to see if anyone was there. We were all alone and he sat down beside me.

"See I told you, your plan was doomed to fail." My mind snapped awake at that. I scowled at him with an intensity I never knew I had. He accused me of causing that explosion, nearly killing Raven, and Fei getting shot several times, and was dead before she hit the ground. I almost left again but instead I grit my teeth and took a shaky breath in.

I stared straight into his eyes. "That wasn't my plan. In fact that wasn't even an idea for my plan," I snapped at him. "Do you really think I did that?! Fei is dead now! Because of someone else's horrible plan! Why would I need to use explosives when I can just decode their language and locks! Did you think about that possibility, hmm? That I have a special ability that could benefit me more than violence will!" He was stunned into silence. He turned and faced and equally stunned Raven.

"But I thought-"

"You thought wrong!" I cut him off immediately. I didn't want to hear anything about this anymore. No more plans to escape, the fool who killed Fei ruined any and all chance of escaping soon, and it hardly seemed worth the trouble without my best friend. I took a bite of whatever Ace brought us, it was tasteless and felt like sand. I felt Raven's words coming. "Raven you can call it off, I don't care."

She put her hand on my shoulder and shook her head. A concerning smile was on her face. "We can't now. You never told me about your... Gift." I looked at her incredulously. She was the last person I would hear that from. "And plus, they will pay... one way, or another." She smile grew fierce and her eyes burned with an inner fire. I shook my head. She was in on the plan completely.

I looked at her in pity. She was so strong and reckless, it would kill her one day. I stood and walked away, tears flood down my cheeks with each step. Ace followed me out the door and stopped me in the hallways.

"So, what was your plan?" he asked curiously.

Annoyance pounded in my head; didn't he get it? I faced away from him. "Does it matter now? Didn't you tell me to stop before?" He didn't answer. "Oh, now I suppose you want to hear it and join our little group, huh?" My voice became very subtle and calm. The words hung in the air between us and I continued out the door.

"He wasn't a part of your team... was he." I halted in mid stride. 'He?' I turned my head glaring mercilessly at him.

"You know who it is." She said to myself. I turned around completely and accusingly pointed. "You know who it is!" He backed away and the front door opened as others walked in. "Meet me in the clearing tonight," I told him with a growl and stormed away.

I went straight for the dorms. My cheeks burned from holding back the tears, and little choking sounds came from my throat; the others stared solemnly but remained silent. They knew… They can see it from the fact I now walk alone. I look down and stare at the handle of the door. It bothered me so much when it didn't before. What true was empty wasn't the space beside me, it was my heart.

I thrust the door open and ran to the room… The one WE shared. I skid to ha a halt as I rounded the corner. I forgotten we shared the room, now what should I do? Her stuff would cause too much pain to keep and yet, I couldn't bare the thought of tossing it away.

I sighed and entered the room. Half the room was empty again. This time it was Fei's half. The flowers were removed from the wall the bed and closets were stripped bare, it was like she never existed. I swallowed dryly imagining that fate would happen to me one day also. No one would remember my name.

I sat down on the bed and waited for further instructions, since I doubt we would go back to work for the rest of the day.

The bell rang and everything fell into an eerie silence. I stood up and went to the door. I peeked out and saw a few others with confused looks as well. We exited the dorms quickly and without a sound. Outside everyone gathered around the sun stone, every single one of them had the identical look of being dazed and confused.

Solarites were everywhere and surrounded the cluster of people. Their guns trained on us, as to prevent a riot. Four shots echoed into the air and everyone focused on the single Solarite, who stood by the sun stone. I caught the glance of Raven, who was on the opposite side of me in the group. Her unmistakable anger hinted at the one Solarite that stood in front of the crowd.

Cain waited until he had everyone's gaze. I could feel him smirking with mockery at our fear and those cold eyes that bore into us searching for any exposed secrets. His guns were smoking in his hands as he then sheathed them. He paced in front of the crowd, his footsteps filling the space with his rhythmic footfalls. I saw some people wince at each thud.

"It's seems we'll have roll call early this week..." His voice sliced through our throbbing hearts. Roll call… Right now, right after we lost Fei and the other people just this morning. Everyone began to sweat with dread and fear. This was the worst possible time for roll call, in fact, that was the last thing we needed.

Cain then motioned for the other Solarites to commence with roll call. They began to call out names and so on. After everyone's name was called there was a moment of awkward hesitation. No one knew what to do; there were no color coated uniforms, no previous test and trials, no statistics of who's the weakest link. I pondered over the thought of them just picking a handful of people to be the 'selected.'

They began to mark off all the names of those who were dead or missing and counted the crowd to make sure no one was trying to hide. So far only two got caught and were ‘selected’ on the spot. No one else was ‘selected’ that day, too many dead workers that anyone else would hinder the progress of the work force.

Everyone was released after another minute and everyone dispersed in separate directions. Raven came up to my and we began to walk away.

“I seriously hope you weren’t a part of that feeble attempt of an escape plan, Ms. Raven. If so, I wouldn’t be surprised given your previous history.” Cain’s voice caught up to us. I froze as my heart just leaped out of my chest. Raven tensed up beside me as well, a smile fixed on her face as she turned around.

“Why would you think I would be a part of that plan? You’re not assuming because I’m one of the few who sets the explosives that I would sabotage my friends, are you?” Her voice had a sweet edge to it, her eyes never wavering in burning anger.

“Yes, unlike the other boy who learned his lesson, you are unwilling to yield to authority. Maybe you should take a lesson from your friend. She knows exactly how to act.” He was nonchalant when addressing her and waited for a reaction… Any reaction. When he didn't receive one he turned swiftly.

He then said, "You do realize your other friend, the guy, is missing as well?" I could tell he purposely made that jibe to get her upset.

It worked. Her tail stopped and ruffled up and her ears flared up alert to the threat. She turned and ran to the cafeteria in a hurry. I scrambled after her not wanting to be left alone with the head Solarite. I turned back and he was gone. A shiver ran down my spine as I turned back around.

"Grave?! Darling?" Raven called halfway reduced to tears.

"Raven." I called to her. She ignored me and continued to called for Grave. I stopped chasing her as she darted further away. It was hopeless in the state she was in... The state I was still in.

I turned on my heel and strolled into the forest and hiked up to the clearing. I sat down and waited for Ace to show up. He came an hour later and sat down before me.

I was busy fiddling with the crystal plants like Raven was doing the other night. I had no clue as to how hard it was to force the plants together without cutting yourself. He waited for me to notice his arrival; I couldn't care less.

He then cleared his throat and began, "Don't you want to know who's the culprit?" I set the stuff down and mildly glanced around.

"I'm beginning to know who it is," I replied gingerly. He frowned at turned away awkwardly. I took the moment to look at him and turned away as he glanced back at me. "I imagine Raven having a hard time to accept it."

"Accept what?" Her voice sliced through us. I turned to face her, abandoning the crystal make shift stuff. Her face was red and puffy as she tried to pull herself together. She shook her head, "I can't find Grave anywhere..." Her voice was thick with anguish. Ace and I remained silent. "What won't I accept?" she snapped.

"I'm calling if off Raven. I'm done," I told her hollowly. I held her gaze with unwavering certainty. She looked at me with a half smile and knocked on my head.

"Is the real Pirate in there? I would like to speak to her." I waited till she stopped. Her smile twisted into a sneer as her eyes narrowed and her tail swished rapidly behind her. Her ears flatten and in a low voice she said, "After all this... All that we been through. You call it quits? Fei died for this and you're using her death as an excuse to back out? If you wanted to quit so badly then you should have done so awhile ago. I told you and I'm fairly certain he has too." She huffed and turned away. She sat down a few yards away.

"Raven..." I began to reason with her.

She snapped at me before I could finish, "If you're so keen on quitting, why are you still working on those?" She looked at the pile of crystals in front of me.

"Raven, why didn't you tell me you tried to escape before? Did Fei know? Would you have ever told us?" I changed the subject to focus more on her. Her eyes widened with a stunned shock and turned to Ace. He stared uncertainly back at her. "Or is it too soon for me to know right now also?" I stood up to leave.

They stood with me and shuffled a little worried. Raven looked in the direction of the town. "We were planning on escaping five years ago... I just arrived at twelve years old. Ace was sixteen and was working with a man. Our mentor and best friend with a nearly foolproof plan. Nearly foolproof indeed. Except that was the flaw and we were discovered instantly. Everyone else in the plan was automatically 'selected' but us two because we were the youngest and the examples." She sighed irritated and kicked at the ground. "I was the worst after that but one of the best of the miners. So I was never 'selected,' instead I was subjected to sessions with the 'wonderful' Cain himself." Her eyes were distant for a moment then sharpened. With her usual smirk she pushed my arm. "I wanted the chance to pay him back for all those times too."

I began to head back to town. "I'll think about what you had said, Raven. I'll tell you if or when we resume this plan. But… I just don't see it happening anymore." I left the clearing.

"She just lost her motive, and come around in her own time. Plus it's smart to lay low for awhile now that the head hunters are on full sensory." I simply shook my head.

I didn't lose my way. I was finally seeing what they were warning me about. I could see the obvious danger I overlooked and realized how flawed this plan was and how the outcome would've been. There was no hope in this world. Nothing left but the empty mindless core of submission and obedience.

The town was on complete lock-down as Solarite guards took routine shifts to patrol the area. Stragglers were pulled off to the side, questioned and detained until further notice. I scanned the crowd for Grave but didn't see him anywhere. If I had seen him what would I have done? I entered the dorms and went to the room I used to share.

I shut the door behind me and turned around. It was suppose to be empty and forlorn, but instead I was staring into the somber eyes of a little girl. Not just any little girl; the elven one I saw on the screen last night. How distant that seems now. Her eyes the color of onyx and her skin almost like a porcelain doll. She stared silently at me waiting.

"Hello?" I asked her. She turned away. "What are you doing here?" I questioned confused. She shrugged in response inspecting the bed. "Are you sure you're in the right room? And can you speak?" She nodded and climbed into the bed Fei used to have. I was hurt and a dull ache filled my chest. Not even twenty four hours and Fei had been replaced.

The elven girl pointed to me and then to the equipment in the closet. I had half a mind to leave her to fend for herself and let her figure everything out by herself. I stopped myself; how selfish was I being, this kid doesn't look like she would last past the next 'roll call.' I crawled up next to her and began to explain everything to the best of my ability.

She listened attentively and understood everything. Well, at least that's what I think. She never responded once nor questioned anything. I just hope she'll be prepared for everyday till the end of days.

We fell asleep and mercy granted me one without dreams.

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