A/N: I know I don't post a lot of author's notes but this book has officially been put on hold. "Forgotten" is the end of PART ONE, and I will now begin editing and revising part one. Chapters will be updated with just numbers once they are finished. I hope everyone who has read and likes this book has enjoyed it so far, and I will start back up on part one as soon as I get done with editing. Comment, vote, and fan if you enjoy. I'll keep in touch with those that would like it.
Chapter 24: Forgotten
Alcatraz, San Francisco Bay, California. 2008.
I woke up in a small room that dripped water from the cracked concrete ceiling. There was a small spotlight in the corner of the room by the metal plated door, the light shone directly into my eyes, nearly blinding me with the bright LED. I shielded my eyes and stood up, my feet wobbled from the lack of walking for an amount of time that I didn't know, and made my way to the door. I had a small rectangular window that looked out to twenty other doors exactly like mine, though the small windows on those egresses were shut tight. There were hanging lights in the tall hallway, the light focused in a circle that left parts of the hallway dark while other areas were lit dimly. I could hear footsteps from far away but I couldn't make out who it was, although everyone I had met had their own way of walking whether it were fast or slow, or slightly limped like Silvus' stride. The steps came nearer until they stopped right next to my door. I could hear a gun click, the safety, and the weapon shoved behind the persons back. The person swung around to face my door and I stepped back, nearly tripping over the floor in the process. Gerard stood in front of me, a grin on his face as if he had been looking for me for ages.
"Cloud, my friend!" He shouted and then went for something on his belt. I heard keys and then a lock turn. The heavy metal door swung open and Gerard swept me into a gigantic bear hug that lifted me off the floor. I coughed to breath, and he let me down to regain my posture. "It took me so long to find you; I have been looking for hours in every door in this place. I kept telling everyone that I was checking for homeless people, and they bought it." Gerard shrugged and embraced me again. This time I hugged him back, my arms barely linked around his torso from the excessive gear he had on.
"Quiet down," I mumbled and pulled him into my cell by my arm. I shut the door; careful not to have it locked and turned my body to face Gerard. "Why were you looking for me?" I asked, and leaned up against one of the wet concrete walls. I shivered against the cold water that drizzled down the concrete in a waterfall fashion. I assumed the room would collapse from the water damage but it held tight except for the cracks in the walls and ceiling.
"I have come to rescue you and your friends… I'm not like the others, that's why I slipped you that note. I hoped you would have figured it out earlier and left Winchester the night before Xeno and Alex had everyone taken."
"You do realize you could have just told me what was going on… We were out on the balcony alone, which was the perfect chance to say something about it."
"If I had told you then you would have gone back into my restaurant with wide eyes that stared right at Xeno. You and I would have both been a goner; I played it safe, OK?" Gerard explained, and sighed afterward. There were bags under his eyes, he hadn't slept in days. He yawned every minute or so, the bags got darker each time he took the large breath.
"Fine, I'm sorry… I'm just…" I stuttered to myself, a hand rested on my shoulder. I looked up to see a beaming smile on Gerard's face. He had perfectly white teeth out of a movie, they were all straight and the color of snow before people's feet trampled and messed up the beauty.
"Cloud, darling, don't fret. I will have you and your friends on a ship out of here by tonight. I found everyone except for you, but here you are. Come with me, I'll get you with everyone else." Gerard took my hand in his and opened the door once again. He peeked his head out of the cracked doorway and then moved forward into a jog. I followed close behind, my hand connected to his as we passed at least thirty more doors like mine. I looked through all of them, they were all empty except for the occasional spider and bug that lurked in the dark corners of the small, enclosed cells.
Gerard stopped suddenly and turned toward a door on the right side of the hallway. The window was open but I could hear voices from within the room. My savior took out his keyring again and unlocked the door to the room. It swung open to reveal Rubella, Spike, and Bartimus standing in different corners. They stopped talking and turned their heads toward us; Spike made the first move and walked toward me, and engulfed me into a hug. I could feel his breath on my neck as if he were trying to inhale as much of me as possible, as if we were to lose each other once again.
"Ah, you found Cloud. Excellent," Bartimus shoved himself from his corner and strode over to us. He placed his hand on my shoulder. I turned toward him, a smile came to my face.
"We all need to talk about who is leaving first and who is staying." Gerard shut the door to the cell, careful not to lock it, and leaned against a nearby wall.
"Wait I thought we were all leaving at once." Spike interrupted harshly, and took a step toward Gerard. Our protector took a defensive stance and stared right at Spike.
"I can't get all of you out of here safely if you all go at once. I will need to take two of you first and then come back for the other two."
"And how do we know this plan of yours will work? What about the two who stay, how do they know you're coming back?" Rubella growled from her corner, and folded her arms across her chest.
"I'm with Rubella, how do we know you won't get caught?" I spoke up. Gerard sighed and shook his head lightly.
"You have to trust me…" Gerard muttered and stared at the floor. His feet shuffled against the cracked concrete. "The only way this will work is if you guys trust me to get you all out safely."
"If you get caught," Rubella asked and stepped forward to face Gerard. "What do we do if we stay behind, rot in here?"
"Look Rubella, if I get caught then you are on your own."
"I am not staying behind." Rubella hissed.
"I wasn't saying you would be staying behind!" Gerard shouted back toward her. "You all need to discuss that yourselves." He waved her off and walked away from his verbal attacker.
"Both of you stop. We won't solve anything when you two are bickering. Rubella go back to your corner. Gerard, stay by the door." Bartimus barked and waved them to their desired places.
"When did you start taking command?" Rubella mumbled and shot a glare toward Bartimus.
"I am the oldest here not counting circus years, and not counting you, Gerard. I ran a ship with a bunch of idiots for ten years; I can run three bumbling fools that can't decide on anything. I am in charge." He responded lowly, his voice filled with a sudden anger that I had only heard once before this: when he stared out at the corpses in the camp after my show. "I volunteer to stay. If anything happens I can find my way out with whoever decides to stay back with me."
I hesitated. I needed to stay back. Spike needed to go with Rubella; I could tell the stress levels in him were raising at a constant rate. He would explode within a week if he didn't get out of this prison. Rubella was an automatic go; nobody needed her here with whoever else was going to stay, she would end up dead before Gerard could come back to save who was left. My fists clenched, I needed to speak up. I knew what Spike would think, he would yell for me to go with him. My eyes shut for a moment to relax, and then opened again to face everyone who stared at each other.
"I'll stay," I broke the silence, and three heads whipped to see me. Spike immediately shook his head and raised his voice to levels I didn't hear often.
"No, I refuse to let you stay in this broken down prison for any longer than you already have. You and I are leaving; Rubella and Bartimus are staying."
"Spike, no. Rubella is going, Bartimus is staying. You need to go, Spike. I'll see you on the outside, I always do." I sighed and stepped back away from him.
"No, I won't let you stay!" Spike yelled. Bartimus hit Spike's shoulder to shut him up.
"Someone will hear," Bartimus whispered.
"I don't give a shit if anyone hears, I won't let Cloud stay here."
"You don't trust me to keep her company while Gerard rescues you guys? Come on, Spike, have some faith in your peers, in your cast mates." Bartimus leered and chuckled afterward. Spike shot him a glare and took my waist in his hands.
"Promise me you'll be safe." He whispered in my ear. I nodded and kissed his cheek; I could feel the blood rush to his face as my lips were connected to his skin. I smiled and let go to look into his deep, dark chocolate eyes once more. They were harder than, not as soft as I remembered. Heat didn't radiate from them anymore, they seemed like cold stone had conformed to the color of dark cacao. "Promise me, Cloud."
"I promise, Spike, I promise to be safe." I pushed my lips against his, and his arms tightened around my waist. I could hear the clearing of throats around us but I ignored them and linked my fingers around Spike's neck. He pulled his lips away and rested his forehead against mine. Spike smiled softly, his white teeth glimmered in the small spotlight in the corner of the room.
"It's settled then, we leave at once. I already have the plan ready; we will be out of this Hell hole by midnight." Gerard checked his watch. "It's eleven now, the guards will be asleep. We should have a clean escape." He rubbed his hands together. "Ready to go?"
"Yeah," Spike and Rubella said together. They stared at each other for a moment in such a way that the two of them needed to reintroduce themselves to the other.
"See you guys on the other side." Bartimus waved them off. Spike left the room first with Gerard. Bartimus stalked off out the door into the darkness of the hallway, and Rubella and I were left alone. I pulled her arm before she could leave, and pulled her back.
"Make him forget about me." I spit out at her. Rubella stepped back afore she could say anything.
"What," Rubella cleared her throat.
"Make Spike forget I ever existed. I'm not getting out of here any time soon, I don't want him to worry…" I turned my head away from her and pushed a piece of white hair behind my ear. "He needs to move on with his life and find a new happiness that doesn't involve me or the circus." I shrugged.
"You do realize that if you do get out of here he won't remember you, and I cannot take back what I do when I make someone forget someone else. It's permanent, Cloud." Rubella warned. I nodded and looked up at her.
"I know the risks, and if I do get out of here alive I will leave him be to find a new life, and I will find a new life of my own. Do this for me, for Spike, Rubella."
"Fine, I'll do it; but not for you." Rubella muttered and stepped out of the door. I reached out to take her hand again but I stopped, I needed to let her go, to leave her and Spike be.
I left the cell and watched as Rubella grabbed Spike's arm and turned him around to face her. Light radiated from her eyes and began its descent into Spike.
"No, Cloud, no stop!" He yelled and struggled to get free from her grasp. "Rubella let me go!" He yelled again, but not loud enough to penetrate any walls. The last of the beaming light went into Spike and he shut up and dropped to his knees. I could hear his panting, his groans from where I was standing. His head turned to look at me and for a moment I thought it didn't work, that he would jump to his feet and run and embrace me, but he just stared at nothing in the distance. Spike looked past me as if I weren't there, as if I were a ghost and he couldn't actually see me. Spike, my soul mate, my lover had forgotten me, would never dream about us, would never think about me anymore. He was free, free from the circus, from the confinement of the circus, and from me. Rubella turned to me for a moment, a hint of regret came from her and then it disappeared when she took his hand in his. They ran off after Gerard who disappeared behind a corner. I sighed and returned to my original cell that Bartimus was now occupying. I raised my eye brow at him as I shut the large, heavy metal door behind me. The lock clicked and we were stuck together in a cramped, wet room. He had sunk down against a wall, his knees pulled up to his chest. He arms were wrapped around his legs to keep himself warm, and he looked up at me.
"We're going to be here for a while, I don't trust that guy to get those two out safely."
"Yeah, I know." I said and sat down next to him.
"They'll come in the morning with sticks and stones, you know that right?" Bartimus asked me, he faced me.
"They'll probably kill us."
"No, I don't think so."
"They'll torture us first, that's what Xeno wants. Then they'll kill us." I turned to look at him, and sighed. I knew I was right, I was always right.
"True," was the last word spoken between us. We looked at each other for some time but we didn't say anything else. All we could hear was yelling that came from outside the door, that someone was escaping, that the gates were open and prisoners have escaped. I sighed.
That prisoner could be me. I could have left with Spike but I didn't. I was stuck here, and I would remain here for the rest of my life.