Author: Syrai

Fandom: Original Anguish Series

Rating: R - THIS CHAPTER IS RATED R. For the language and some… other not-so-nice and violent stuff.

Genre: Fantasy Sci-fi etc

Status: COMPLETE!

Summary: Second part of "Anguish series" - sequel to 'Shades of Truth.' Set about three years after the incidents of SoT. (You might want to read it to truly understand what's going on in here) Romy's life changes dramatically when the hidden witch gene seems to be awakening and all the sudden, she becomes the prey being hunted by her own friends. Now the question is, can she still be saved or will her mother's fate be also hers?

Disclaimer: My precious, she said, my precious.

A/N: Here we are. ::PHEW:: Can't believe it's finally done, the last chapter of "Awakening" - It's a bit longer, I think, but I didn't feel like dividing it or anything. The pace is somewhat fast at times, but I like it that way so… Hope you've enjoyed the story and in case you have, drop me a line. I never get bored when it comes to reviews, heh. Thank you F for putting up my Romy-rants, I owe you. No wait, I don't.Awakening

Part 7

"Romy, I need an honest answer." It's Patrick's voice that shakes me out of my dark thoughts back into the cold reality… reality, like A bucket of cold water thrown on you. What a nice wake-up call, indeed.

There's no one else but me and Patrick standing in the kitchen. With his arms folded, he's staring at me with the forever-questioning look on his face and trying to decide whether my insane notion stands to reason. We both know what Morgan and Kaylee would say to that, but somehow I've got the feeling Patrick sees something they do not. Something more. He sees into my soul; sees the spot the pain of unawareness has painted black. Understands.

"To what?" I ask, not sure what he means for he hasn't asked me any questions. For 15 minutes he's just stood there staring at me and as much as it's freaked me out, I've kept my mouth shut. Making things worse is not the first line in my to-do-list if you must know. I can do it without meaning to, really. My hands are sweating and my heart is beating faster and faster… I'm nervous, okay? I have every right to be, don't you think?

"Tell me why?" The sincere tone of voice, the unmasked curiosity in his eyes… the way his body seems to speak without saying a word, I can't lie to him. I don't want to. He doesn't have to clarify the question any more than that, for I know what it's about.

"Because", I spit out shrugging, "I've learnt my whole life has been a lie. A big fucking lie, which was told me to only keep me from knowing what really happened to my mother and by none other but my own father." It hurts every time to speak of him like that. All the bad things I know he's done can't change the fact he's my father, the one who raised me. I'm polluting my father's memory by every word I let out, by every thought and though I hate it, I can't do anything about it. He's not a saint and I sure as hell ain't either.

"At first I tried to adjust to it… I did adjust. I let myself believe that he had his reasons and that you're still the bad guys." Yeah, look how that turned out? "Then this happens. I fucking turn. I didn't ask for this, I didn't want this." No, I could've lived perfectly well without this. Although… although if I had, it means I would've continued living in a lie, killing innocent people... I don't know if I'll end up in hell, but if I had done that, I surely would. Still, sometimes ignorance is a bliss, right? "It happened. I adjusted, again."

Patrick shakes his head slightly, telling me he's not quite comfortable with the answer I've given. "That's not answering the question", he says, but deep in down I think I know I can't give him an answer satisfying enough. Honestly, I don't think there even is one. He doesn't say anything more, only waits for me to continue and defend myself.

I don't let him down. "I'm fucking tired of adjusting." I am, it's the only thing I do anymore. Everything around me changes and what do I do? I accept it because I have no other choice. Well fuck that! I want to have a choice and that's what changes the situation. I am going to fight for the right to choose. I am going to fight for my rights and theirs, so that one of these days the world will know the truth.

"I can't lie to myself anymore and carve facts into something else. I don't want to. I need to know what the Centre is really about, I need the lie to be purified so that Romy Hensley or whoever the fuck I really am, can live her life without looking over her shoulder all the time. I want to bring those bastards down, but you can't fight your enemy if you don't know who and what they are. What are their weaknesses and flaws."

I thought I explained that bit to him already? Did he want me to say it again just so that he can be sure I mean it? It's not an act I put on to deceive you, Patrick, it isn't. It's how I feel and you must know it because frankly, if you didn't I wouldn't be here now. I wouldn't have been allowed to be here.

"I get that part, I do", he says pensively, scratching his neck, "But… you can't blame my sisters or me for being skeptical. As far as we can tell, you could've -"

Here we go again. And again. And again… and again. "-Lied to you, set up a trap, yeah." It's frustration eating my nerves, making me fidget annoyingly. I've done my best to prove him that I'm not what I used to be, but either he's too goddamn stubborn to see it or he's just testing me. I hate both of those options with burning passion. What more can I do for God's sake?

"This could be a whole fucking set up, but it isn't. You know that, Patrick."

As I speak with rather pleading voice, something flashes in his eyes but I'm not sure how to define it. Almost as though his curiosity had grown even deeper somehow. "If this is just about Trey, I won't even think about it. Revenge is sweet, but not worth it."

I sigh. Trey, Trey, Trey. Funny he should assume it's only about him. It's not. They think I can't live my life happily ever after now that I don't know if I can trust him or not, but a matter of fact remains the same; I've managed on my own even before I knew him and I think I can do it again. I'm a big girl. Give me some credit, will you?

"Patrick, I admit I loved Trey. I still do, but my life doesn't revolve around him." Who's crazier? Me for saying it… or him if he believes it? Nevermind that. "All I'm saying is that if he's one of the bad guys, if he's been lying to me, I need to know."

Again, the same knowing flash can be seen in his eyes. "But this isn't about what you need, Romy", Patrick points out with chiding tone. You think I don't know that? Please.

"No, but it's part of it. This is what we, as witches, need." Gosh, it feels so weird to attach my own name into a group of witches, but as much as I want to, I can't stick my head up into a bush every time it comes to that. Accepting what I've become is still occasionally… difficult. "It just includes the solution to my problem too."

"Clever", he says impressed, smiling.

I know, I always am. "So how's it gonna be?"

There's a short moment of silence at first, during which I'm somewhat sure he'll reject my idea with some lame comforting phrase. It was a good thought, Romy, but too dangerous. It was a good idea, but not do-able. It was good plan, Romy, but we can't afford to go with it. It was good, Romy, but-

"Give me two days", I hear him saying, "I'll see what I can do about Morgan and Kaylee."

Umm, what?

-----

It's silent, apart from the sound of fast typing, it is.

Two days is exactly how long it took for Patrick to relocate his headquarters into some secret location that was told to none of those that stayed behind. That including me, few others and Patrick himself. He told me it was safer this way; that the location of the base had already been endangered and I had only give him a reason to do what he had been thinking of doing for a long time now. Moving. He had been in need of change anyway, he said, but I think the words were let out only to make me feel better.

Now it's only us five sitting in the control room. They, Patrick, Mikaela, Colin and Joe, are all hunched over their computer screens and typing so fast that it sounds as if they were irrationally hitting the keyboard with all ten fingers. So, I had originally suggested we'd break into the Centre's archives, but Patrick had another thought in mind. He figured we should first try and hack into their computer systems and if that revealed nothing, we could always try attack the place and get killed, as he said. I didn't found the joke so funny, but I got it. If it didn't work out, we had a choice. We could leave it, or go after the real thing. I know there's only a handful of us, but I truthfully didn't expect any one else but Patrick to stay behind. Morgan and Kaylee didn't, and I wouldn't have let them either. I guess in some really weird and twisted way, I care about those two thorns in my ass more than I thought and besides, I needed someone to take care of Chelsea.

Yeah, I said goodbye to the weeping girl yesterday night. She knew what I was about to tell her beforehand, of course, but it made it harder for me by forcing me to say it all. To explain everything. The angry look she kept glued to my eyes made my heart dry out and the blood vanished from my veins. There was only my shell and broken heart.

There's always the chance the Centre will somehow find out our location through internet or blah blah. I have no idea how it works and even though Mikaela, being a sweetheart she is, tried to explain everything to me about trace marks and such, I said it's ok. I don't need to understand anything of it. As long as it's in English, whatever they find if they find that is, I'm fine. So, I only stand here behind her shoulder and watch how she works with the computer an hour after another. Amazing.

"Romy!"

What the fuck? That's a little girl's voice I'm hearing, calling out my name. I turn around and what am I seeing? Chelsea. At first I can't believe my eyes, but as I see Patrick standing up, I am somewhat sure she's really standing there. With only few steps, I rush to her with hands on my hips.

"Chelsea! What did I-"

"But-" She tries to interrupt me, but I don't give her a chance to continue. "What did I tell you?!"

She looks down to her feet before replying. "To go with Morgan and Kaylee." The words are said quietly and I can't help smiling softly. Sure, I am angry at her for not obeying my command, but you can't be mad to someone so sweet for long. Patrick hasn't said anything yet, and I don't expect him to. Even though it wasn't intended, Chelsea's welfare is in the end, mine to worry. I made Patrick to use his connections and he got a hold of this couple he knows from Australia that's been looking to adopt a child and things got cleared up. They know about witches, but they aren't ones themselves. Problem solved. And now, there she is, standing in front of my face instead of sitting on a plane towards a new life. Excuse-me for being THIS close to strangling her!

"That's right. Go with Morgan and Kaylee", I say strongly, trying to block all the loving and not-so-loving thoughts out of my mind, "You know, to me it doesn't look like you'd obeyed me."

She lifts her chin defiantly and I swear she wrinkles her nose as she responds through gritted teeth. "I did obey", she says, challenging.

My eyebrow quirks sarcastically. "I can see that." Not.

To that, she doesn't bark back anything sarcastic. In fact, the way she speaks makes my heart feel heavier than ever. "I want to be here with you", she says, "I don't want to go." What a sneaky little thing she is! She knew perfectly well how that kind of tone would affect me, damnit.

I can't keep the sigh inside. I should've tied her up, duck-taped her mouth and thrown the girl into the plane myself. Yeah, that's what I should've done, but didn't. How stupid of me to trust those two to be able to take care of someone as pig-headed as this little girl. I can tell she's a bit amused by my thought as the smile caresses her face, and so I quickly clear my mind. "Foolish kid. You have any idea how dangerous this is?"

"Not as dangerous as your original plan", says Morgan, stepping over the threshold. I don't know if my jaw drops open, but the look on her face hints so. The same happens again when I see Kaylee following her sister with a wide, but apologizing smile on her lips. I'll be damn. The judgement days has come.

"What the hell are you doing here?" Patrick snaps before my speaking ability returns to me. Exactly what I would've asked, only a bit louder and with more attitude mixed with it.

"Well I'm sorry!" Morgan shrieks, only I don't think she means it. She's not sorry, she's amused. "We tried to get her away but she was… persistent."

Persistent my ass.

"Two grown-up witches cannot even take one little girl to a goddamn plane with them?" There I go, got my voice back. "How hard is it to knock her out of this world and drag her there?"

Chelsea giggles, but Morgan only snorts. "When the girl anticipates your every move before you do anything at all, I'd say very", Kaylee sighs, "Besides, we…" For a moment she looks like she didn't know how to put her thoughts into words. What? "We wanted to be here for you guys, in case anything should happen."

We'll get to that part later, that's so not the point. "But bringing her -"

"She wanted to come", Morgan tries as if that was an acceptable excuse. I don't think so. "Yes, she's a child, but she understands what's going on." I beg to differ. The hell she does. She's a child who's seen a lot, true, but still a child. She should be at home, playing with dolls, dressing them up and asking older people what things like 'intercourse' and 'making love' mean. You know, all that typical stuff children of her age do.

The look on her face changes into highly questioning, which is the point I clear my throat to continue my lecture to get her mind of the words I just thought about, but then Colin, who hasn't even lifted his eyes from the screen, speaks. "Patrick, Romy", he says, "we're ready to go on your mark."

I forget what I am about to say.

-----

It takes three hours, lots and lots of coffee with lots and lots of sugar and some arguing with the Foley sisters before anything actually happens. It's Joe, 30-year-old computer nerd, that's first one to scream 'heureka' startling both me and Chessie, who's sleeping against my side. The yell makes me wince, which is what wakes her up completely and for that, I give her an apologizing grimace. "Sorry", I say petting her head gently, "It was Joe's fault. Blame him."

But Chelsea doesn't respond any way, it's almost as if she hadn't even heard my words at all. Her attention is pointed only towards Joe and I suddenly remember what startled me to begin with. Has he found something that is now capturing her thoughts so completely that rest of the world is no longer there? Does that mean, he's found something… bad?

Given the fact it's the Centre, bad is the only thing you can find. It pains me to think I used to work there, I used to believe I was doing what God wanted me to do. To protect my country from fiends that could only harm us…

Patrick is already there, standing behind Joe's back checking out his findings. Morgan and Kaylee disappeared from the room half an hour ago to God knows where, but both Colin and Mikaela are also standing there by his side.

At first they're all silent and though it tickles my curiosity, I can't move a muscle to go over them and read what is that they're reading. Then it's Patrick that draws in a deep breath, letting out a shocked "Holy fucking shit…" that really doesn't make feel better.

"Romy…" he glances over his shoulder, but his eyes doesn't connect with mine. "You better check this out."

Breathe. Chelsea's fingers are wrapped around my wrist, forcing me to stay still. Her nails are digging into my flesh, painfully if I may add, but I don't think she even realizes that. To her the world has honestly vanished. The way she stares at Patrick in obvious horror freaks me out, but still I simply remove her hand carefully and stand up. I will worry about her in a minute.

I walk closer and read the file Joe has found.

I reach the final line with tears silently running down my cheeks when the alarm suddenly goes off and a faint scream followed by a gunshot can be heard from somewhere near.

Everything happens like it was a dream I'm having. The world is a place that doesn't make sense and no one expects it to either. It's a dream, a nightmare. Imagination. They all turn to look at me for some answer, but I can't tell what's going on - I have no idea. What the hell is going on?

The yell, Morgan's I assume, has woken up the hunter in me and I instantly try to rely on my gun, only to realize it's not in the holster like it usually is.

Oh fuck. "Patrick…" That's all I say with begging tone, before he hurries to open the desk's top drawer and throws me my own precious gun. Holy shit, it's been this close all along? The familiar feeling against my skin, I feel I have a chance to beat whatever it is that's been thrown to test us this time.

We don't need to discuss about what to do next, we know it without saying. Defend the base, defend ourselves.

"Stay here", I say to Chelsea, slowly approaching the door with Patrick behind me. The girl nods in silence.

She doesn't cry or say anything which oddly gives me strength; my brave little girl, that she's proven. I'm suddenly stopped and torn out of my thoughts as Patrick takes a hold of my wrist, pulling me towards him. "Did you do this, Romy? Is this your fault? My sisters are out there, I swear if you did this-"

I understand he's shocked, horrified even, and yes I understand why he right away goes and blames me. But no. "No", I snap, shoving him off angrily. "I didn't do this." What a stupid time to doubt me, really! There are, if I'm right which I'm sure I am, hunters inside the base!

"Fine", he says. Woah, was that all the convincing he needed? "I'm gonna check this level, you go check upper-level. Joe, Colin, you too. Mikaela, stay with the kid."

I don't argue, they don't either. No reason to.

I walk out of the room into the hallway with my gun held high. Step by step I walk closer to the elevator near the door - the only way up. It'd be easier if I was going down, but things are never easy with me. The tears have already dried on my cheeks, leaving nasty trails behind.

There are no happy endings. The file I just read keeps flashing in front of my eyes. A study, an object. Me. My world is in pieces.

I push the button and stand there waiting for the elevator to arrive. Throwing myself into the lion's cave, I am.

An object of use. That's what I am. Used, dirty, stained. I wished Raven was wrong, I wished he had got it all mixed up. Somehow, I imaged that whatever we would find would prove that Trey… I wipe my cheeks as the tears fall down again… I thought I'd get my proofs telling he loved me.

Trey's blood type? Unknown. His father's blood type? Unknown.

Patrick is the only male witch I know to carry the witch gene, cause as said, only females are usually witches. Or if there are male witches, they don't have any powers. A male witch cannot pass it forward, right? Wrong. It seems, occasionally, that does happen.

The elevator makes a sound and the doors open. I step in.

With Trey it did.

I got the gene from my mother. He got it from his father. What a lovely couple we'd make. Wonder what our children would be like? Would a son of ours carry the gene?

Breathe, Romy. You have to keep going. He loves me because he has to. Because the Centre has its own orders for him that have nothing to do with killing me.

I'm a fucking moron.

Again that same sound and the doors open. I swallow hard before I step closer and peek to see if there's some monster waiting for me. I can see something, but that's definitely no monster. It's Morgan lying on the ground… bleeding. I forget everything else and run to her in spite all that I've been taught. Kneeling down and taking her hand into mine, I wipe bloody hair away from her face to see her eyes. She blinks.

"Your lover is here", she says sounding sleepy. I know, I know. "I figured… I'm sorry, Morgan, I'm so sorry. But you gotta believe me, it wasn't me. I didn't do this."

It's important to me that she knows I didn't betray her. I can't let her die and go to heaven without telling her that, because I'm pretty sure otherwise she'll come back to haunt me for as long as I live. She closes her eyes mumbling something, but the time is stopped; I hear a gunshot and feel something splash on my face. Déjà vu.

I can't move, I can't breathe, I can't think, I can't do anything. I stare at the girl with my hands raised in the air as if they could've covered me from the blood - a reflex. A reflex which has caused me to drop my weapon. A bad, bad mistake. But I don't care… I can't care. There is no Morgan anymore. There is what was left of her face, a bloody pile of… brain. I feel like I'm about to gag, but nothing comes out.

I wait for the same thing to be my fate, but instead, a hand grabs a fistful of my hair, pulling me onto my feet. The hand doesn't, however, let of my neck even after I'm standing which is probably only good for I have no strength in me to hold me straight. "I don't fucking believe this, I told him to get you out of the country."

Only then I realize I've closed my eyes and slowly, very slowly I open my eyes.

"Fucktard."

I swear, it's the first word that slips through my gritted teeth as I see Trey's familiar figure. He has his gear on, whole black S.W.A.T-alike uniform and mask, which he tears off violently. Boy, is he really going against the rules of a secret division, or what? Traitor. "I didn't think you'd be stupid enough to stay, I thought you'd be smarter."

He grabs me by the shoulders, shaking me like I was a child. I hate it, I goddamn hate it when he does that and he does that often… way too often. I am not a child, ok? Am not! "Why the fuck didn't you take it off?" He snarls, shaking even harder. I fall down against his chest, but with what's left of my strength, I try to push him away.

"What… the hell are you… talking about?" Try as I might, it's not helping. His hands stay on my shoulders and in the end, I give up. He doesn't let me fall, though, but I wish he had. I'd be closer to my gun.

"I thought it's a joke, but I didn't tell it to them." He looks so mad. What bad have I done, huh? It was him that shot my friend spilling her guts all over my face! You tell me who's the bad guy here? "I thought you found the tracker and left it here, but no."

Wait. Wait a minute. The dead body next to us disappears from my mind, partly because I don't want to think about it and partly, because I have too much other thoughts to think about. What tracker? In only few seconds I realize what I hadn't even thought about. I had completely forgotten why those millions of witches had died before I was born… because of medical experiments. A tracker had been implanted-

Shit.

"You put a fucking tracker in me?" If I could, I'd smack him across the face. Oh I would, I'd smack him twice.

"No, they did", he sighs, "You fucked it up, Romy, you lost." With that said, he starts to walk towards the elevator, dragging me by the arm. "No… No… Trey… no", I try to beg, but he doesn't stop. I know where he's going and suddenly I feel the need to stop him, to do something. I never thought I'd be willing to sacrifice myself for another person… but I guess I am. "Trey, you got me. Take me to the Centre and leave them."

He doesn't look at me, only tightens his grip. "I can't. I have my orders." I refuse to move. I fall down on my knees, but he solves the situation by grabbing my gun from the floor, twisting my arm behind my back, pulling me up and pushing me forward. The pain waters my eyes and I can hardly see where I am going.

There's that sound again.

I'm being pushed into the elevator.

"Yeah, you have your orders", I growl the minute he lets go of my arm and throws me against the opposite wall. My back hits the wall and I fall down on my stomach. I can taste blood in my mouth. "I read about them - that's why you're here, isn't it?" Pushing myself upwards, I sit up, but stay on the floor only looking up. There's agony in his eyes, but I have no doubt he's going to fulfil his orders even if I'd get naked and have sex with him. He'd only fulfil them afterwards.

"What?" He tilts his head and before I know it, he stops the elevator between floors. Great, gives me and more importantly, the others, some time to think.

"Drop the act, asshole", I snarl spitting blood out of my mouth. I think the fall split my lip and cracked my tooth. "I read it all, you and your orders. You disgust me."

"Parker, what you-"

"Don't you call me that!" I glare at him with all the hatred I have in me shining in my eyes. "Don't you call me anything. I know what they told you to do. I know what you've done to me and to dozens of others!" Just the thought of it makes sick to my stomach. I wasn't the only one.

At first he looks like he's about to deny it, but for some reason, he decides to go with the truth. "You think I had a choice?" He asks. If I didn't know better, I could almost think he's sorry…

"Yes."

He laughs sarcastically, obviously doubting me. "Think again, darling." And I do. "Did you have a choice when they asked you to go work for them, did you?" …No. "Did you have a choice on any of this?" …Not really. "No. You don't say no to them", he spits, "I did what I had to do."

"You used me", I say bursting into tears without meaning to.

He pushes the button first and only after that, he turns around to look at me again. "I believe we used each other", he says gently, "Only difference is, I didn't want to."

"Trey, if you love me at all, you will push that button again and leave this place with only me", I say when the doors open once more. He looks at me smiling a sad smile, which alone tells me it's hopeless situation. "What is love worth anything if you're dead?" He asks and to that, I don't know what to say.

He grabs me again, pulls me up and pushes me into the hallway to clear the area.

We reach the control room's door after a lot of falling and pushing and screaming and fighting. I scream to warn Mikaela, but the door is not opened by her. It's opened by some bitch I have never seen in my life. She steps aside, giving us space to enter the room.

Mikaela's lying on the floor, dead, but to my great relief, Kaylee is sitting on the sofa with Chelsea in her bloody arms. I don't know if it's Mikaela's blood, but the look on her face tells me her sister wasn't the only one shot.

"Oh I'm finally getting to meet the one whose fault this is", the woman says, chuckling an evil laughter. What a skank.

"Elise, this is Romy - Romy, Elise." What the fuck is he doing? Introducing me to his goddamn work-mate?

"Burn in hell."

"Probably will", she laughs and removes her eyes from me. "So what we gonna do about these two?"

"What you think?" Trey snaps. The woman, stupid Elise, only shrugs as if to apologize and lifts the gun in her hand higher.

"No!" I shout and act on pure instinct. I charge towards the woman tearing myself apart from Trey's grip and knock the annoying bitch on the floor, punching her in the face as hard as I can. The gun is forgotten, I don't even know where it got thrown.

My happy moment of victory doesn't last for too long, for Trey grabs my arm drawing me away from the beaten woman. "Shit", she mutters, holding her bleeding nose and looking about ready to attack me back. I think the only thing stopping her after she's got up, is Trey's cold facial expression.

Without explanation, he suddenly draws out my gun and throws it at me. Before I catch it, his own gun is pointed to my head to make sure I don't do anything… silly.

"You have a choice", he says, and when the skank is about to say something, he silences her with a wave. "Elise, take the girl."

Elise does as she's told and grabs Chelsea's arm, pulling her away from Kaylee's safety. Oh god, no.

"You have a choice", he says again. "You kill one and the other can go."

I can't believe this is the man I love. This cruel, brutal and evil thing is everything I thought I wanted. I've slept with the devil. Great. No heaven for me.

I look at Kaylee, and then to Chelsea. She still hasn't said a word, hasn't even cried.

"If you stop this, Trey, I will choose to come with you and I'll do whatever they want me to do. But not this", I say it, but I know he's not giving in. I wish Raven was here… Where is he anyway?

"He's okay", Chelsea says suddenly. "Shut up!" Elise's hand connects with the little girl's face and as soon as it does, I pull the trigger. It's Elise that falls down on the floor with a hole between her eyes. Trey's reaction to this is quite simple - he draws out yet another gun, one pointing at Kaylee, one at me. I turn around to look at him.

"Whoops." I make a face.

"Didn't like her anyway", he says shrugging it off. "Doesn't change it though. Choose."

And I choose. The Centre once again leaves me no choice and for a moment I understand him. I understand.

I raise my gun again, but this time it's pointing towards Kaylee. She doesn't look shocked, or too terrified it that matters. "I'm sorry", I say, but she only nods accepting what I'm about to do. I have to choose.

Chelsea screams when the bullet penetrates Kaylee's skull and the lifeless body falls down on the sofa.

"There." I throw the gun to his feet, holding back the tears. "I made my choice. You do yours."

And he does.

"Go", he says to Chelsea, but the girl doesn't move. "Go!" he yells the word this time, and now she moves. Runs out of the room, out of my life… but before she does that, she stops and looks up straight into his eyes. "I'll never forgive you", she says, "never." That is the word she repeats and I feel pride I've never felt before.

My brave little girl.

I watch her go, knowing that if this had turned out differently, I would've gone and kidnapped her from Australia myself.

-----

Lying on my side, curled up like a little child under the blanket, I stare the naked concrete wall trying to drown myself into my mind. If I play a game of make-believe and pretend to drown, why can't my brain act on it? With all the great little things a human mind can do, this is the one wish it can't grant? How fucked up is that?

The wall only stares me back in silence. In here it's the only wall of my tiny little prison that one can actually stand to look at. The only one that shows me nothing, says nothing. The three others are made of unbreakable glass, the kind even I cannot make falter and whenever my eyes meet them, I see myself. Or the shadow of myself. What I never wanted to be, but am now.

An object.

There's a bracelet around my wrist. 4847, department 7. That's what I've become. A line of numbers.

After everything, I've come to the conclusion that life is nothing more but pure incidents following each other. No connections between one thing and another, no reason, no order. Fate or no fate, it doesn't matter, for nothing happens like He planned them to.

Life is a chain accident and we're that chain.

God may have made the world in the beginning of time, set the natural order of things, and given us life. But God is not what lives our lives, it's our job. Faith is all we have left of Him, an image in our heads that is slowly fading away… turning into something foggy and misty. I love humanity, I do. It's the people I hate. I think I heard or read it once, years ago, but it still applies.

A world would be so much better place without us.

When did we mess up? Was it when we evolved into these greedy son of a bitches who take life for granted and love only themselves? Who, despite everything history has taught us, will do anything there is to be done if it means we can get power into our own hands? I thought one person could change everything, change the way of life. But I don't think so anymore. One person can try, but it takes so much more than that. It takes others to agree, to support, to understand.

God had His plan, but we were the ones to abandon it.

So for that, he abandoned us in return, didn't he?

They say God loves us all equally but how can they be sure? He forgives our sins if we ask for forgiveness - does He? The funniest part is, they say faith can move mountains. All you need to do is believe. There's that word again; believe. What happens when the faith swears out? Am I a bad person now, for not believing anymore?

"Parker."

"Go. Away."

It's been over a year. A whole goddamn year. You'd think he'd got the hint by now, but no such luck. All these months he's visited me almost every day; in a minute, he'll draw up a chair, sigh and sit down and talk to me about his day as if we were some ordinary couple. As if I still loved him… as if he still loved me. About that, I think he actually does. Maybe he feels sorry for what happened, I don't know. He loves the idea of what we were and what we could've been, but it doesn't get through his skull that all those things can no longer happen. They weren't meant to be, now were they?

Sitting down on the same chair as always, he looses his tie by pulling the knot, and takes a deep breath. I don't look, but I know.

"The baby is fine", he says sounding relieved. I can hear him smiling, I can feel it, but I refuse to turn around to see it. There's nothing to smile for. "She's fine. Did you hear me?"

"Yes."

I hear him getting up, walking closer to the glass. Then, unexpectedly, he sits down on the floor leaning against the glass. "They don't need her, I can take her home."

Now my head turns to look at his back, for it's the only thing I see through the glass. "Home?" The cruel way of life. "You're taking my baby girl home with you?"

"She is mine, you know", Trey says sounding proud. "They made sure of it. She'll be one hell of an agent one of these days. They're still waiting for a boy, you know. You're gonna have to give him to them sooner or later. We have time."

Everything inside me is in knots. That is not the future I wanted my child to have.

"She's not yours. She's theirs. Not really mine, not really yours."

He turns around to look at me with hurt eyes. "You don't mean that." I don't get it; how can he sound so offended, how can he look so hurt? He's the one who put me here. He was the one who literally carried me here, laid me down on the bed and gave me a kiss on the forehead. He told me things would be better and that he'd take care of me. I wonder if that's really what he thinks he's doing.

I admit. He didn't have to rape me to get what they wanted. I do love this man.

I love the shadow of what he used to be.

Nothing but shells left. His, mine. Ours.

"You don't mean that", he says louder.

"You think so?" I crawl out of the bed on the floor, crawl towards him and stop only when I'm close enough to touch the glass with my fingers. "Wake up, Crichton", I whisper, "the real world awaits."