Chapter 18- A Battle Plan

A week later, I was sitting on a small auto train racing towards the center of the Capital at unthinkable speeds. Bert was to my left, and Joan to my right. After our little discussion, it appeared that Valence was trying to kill me. He'd sent me out into the wilderness looking for them hoping I would die.

Isn't that lovely?

Well, the group had decided that Joan and Bert would escort me to the capital for more protection. It seemed Valence had not put a tracker on me, and had no way of knowing I was alive. Me knowing this also meant that there was no reason to make it all seem smiles and rainbows anymore- it had been clearly stated that if we're lucky, two of us will get out alive.

Since it appeared that Valence hadn't shown any interest in them, only me, I was top priority. I thought that was stupid. What would Valence want with a little girl? Seriously. I had about no fighting skills, no money, I'm not that fun to be around, and there's very little chance that anyone would want to pay ransom for me if the people to my right and left were dead.

Just saying.

With a rush, we were whisked underground. And the scenery that was previously flying around us was replaced with a series of lights that were blurred together into one line. We began to turn, and I found myself shutting my eyes to keep from getting dizzy. Soon, we rushed to a complete stop, ending the most awkwardly silent ride of my life.

We stepped off, and the sheer amount of metal that surrounded us astounded me. It was like the whole place was just metal. Nothing else. The train was obviously run on magnets, so the track I could understand, but I found myself missing the solid-dirt-and-wood walls that I'd been living in.

There was a security guard that then led us in complete silence to a large, guarded room. There were around 100 people, all seated around an empty arena. We were emptied into the center like dirty laundry, the guard not particularly caring who we were.

The place was terrifying. The people seated around of us were all cut from the same fabric, tall, suited, and angry with everything. Their faces were stone hard, and seemed completely unaware of the three people who had been deposited below them.

There was one man who noticed me. He looked essentially just like the others, except he looked at me.

He spoke. "It appears that Reverse has returned."

"Thank you," said Bert, bowing to the man and taking my hand. "I would like to address you once again with the same request."

A man on the opposite side of the circle spoke. "We turned you down before, why is anything different now?" he asked.

"Recently, a little girl has joined us," he said, holding up my hand. "We have reasons to believe that it is important she is kept safe."

I was a confident person, but I felt like I was shrinking in the presence of these people. To my horror, everyone's eyes darted to my face, causing my knees to begin to tremble.

"Why is she here?" Asked another man.

Bert looked to me. "Tell them."

"I-I-" I began. "I was sent out on a mission to find my friends by- V-Valence," I explained. "I found them."

"She's a spy?" Asked another man.

"N-no!" I shouted. "I don't intend on telling anyone where we are. Certainly not him."

"So, why should we keep her safe? What if she puts us in danger?"

"If she dies, then it's almost certain that you will be attacked here. And, it doesn't sound like Valence knows where she is."

"Why is she important?" Asked a man from behind me.

"Because Valence wants her," Joan said, sighing. "We don't know!"

The room was silent.

"What do you mean you don't know?"

"We have no idea," Bert said, "Valence's ways have always been mysterious. He always has a way of getting what he wants. He wants Winnie."

"How do you know that he'll attack if he gets her?"

"We have reason to believe that if you have her, Valence and his army will lose."

"What reasons?" asked the first man.

"He sent her out to find us," he explained, "in the wilderness, with no leads. He wanted her to die."

I shivered at the thought.

"The world that we live in is going to be shaken," he said, walking over to me and taking my hand, "and this will be her only chance for shelter."

The men looked around, back at me, and then to Bert. He sighed. "I'll leave you to talk," he said, taking me out of the room with Joan behind us.

A/N:

Oh, hi guys. I mean, it hasn't been awhile, or anything… heh.

So the musical ended, and now all my friends are leaving me and going off to college. Boo. I've been super, super busy, and I haven't had time to write at all! AUGH!

Good news though, I'm taking a class in Creative Writing next year, (That's actually bad news for me, but good for you) and my stories should get better! Whoo! No more Mary-Sues!

So I am so, so eternally sorry for that. I don't know how often I'm going to keep updating, but I wanted you guys to know that I'm still here. (Now to go update the other 5 fanfics I'm working on… ugh….)