Days passed. I met with the other members of our little revolution, but I was barely there. It was like I had just shut down, unable to function. Austin and Charlie took pity on me, and urged me to stay with them. When they had learned Jonathan's condition, they only grew more furious at the treatment.
A sharp rap on the door drew our attention from the pages of code spread out on the table. I hastily sat on them as Charlie opened the door. Sebastian strode in, flanked by two other guards. I felt my hands grow sweaty as they all stared at me.
"Katie Rose, you are to start working Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays." Sebastian said in a commanding tone.
I swallowed hard, nodding. "Yessir."
"These guys are on our side." Sebastian waved to his companions.
We all relaxed. I carefully placed the pages on the table, and Austin made a frustrated noise. "They don't make any sense! A bunch of repeating numbers, so what?"
One of the guards, stocky and on the pudgy side, pointed to the first page. "Think." His deep voice ordered. "If any of you are even remotely observant, you would know."
I stared at the numbers until they swam in front of my eyes.
"The planes in the hangar, can they be snuck out?" Charlie asked.
The other guard, tall and dark skinned, shook his head. "Good luck with that. The Barrier prevents anything from getting in or out without permission."
The thought of Simmion made me grow nauseous. I buried my face in my hands, and felt a sharp smack to the back of my head.
"Hey! Don't hit her!" Austin protested.
I stared at Sebastian's cold eyes. "Grow up. Your friend is still alive, yeah?"
I weakly nodded.
"Then use the helplessness you're drowning in to jump-start that brain of yours. Brian here was talking to you when he mentioned the numbers."
I focused on the numbers, trying to think. "Why can't you just tell us?" I said, aggravated.
"We were sworn not to verbally tell anyone." The black man, whom I later learned to be named Vern, said seriously.
I took a deep breath, examining the numbers. Charlie offered the guards a drink, which they accepted. It suddenly clicked.
"These numbers, are they-" I pulled out the stolen iPhone, bringing up the map.
Said map was the Main House's secret laboratory. It was like a maze, constantly twisting and turning with many, many hallways. I glanced between the numbers and the maze.
"Are these numbers the way out?!" I cried.
There was the barest nod that could be confused with a glance away from me from Brian. I smiled widely.
"It makes sense!" I turned to my friends.
2, 3, 11, 5, 6, 2, 7, 2, 9, 9, 8.
"The first number is two, right? So the second door." I pointed. "Number three is the next hallway. Eleven steps, hall number five. Hall number six. Two steps, hall seven, two more steps, eighteen more steps, hall number eight. What comes after that?"
Vern nodded to the page with jumbled words. Suddenly excited, we struggled with the words.
"It's an address, right?" Charlie asked. "This is where we emerge when we leave hall eight? In a subway, under West Street?"
All they did was sip their coffee nonchalantly. Almost hyper, Charlie cried, "And the next line, that's where we go for help, right? Katie, look up Strait Street, 224!"
I entered the information into the phone, and we stared at the old house, momentarily confused.
"People say ol' Mrs. Greene went a little nutty after the death of her third husband." Sebastian said to Brian, tapping his cup.
Brian shrugged. "They also say she's never lied in her life and always opens her home to strays."
Vern cast me a smile. I wanted to squeeze all three of them until they couldn't breathe.
"You guys are amazing. Thank you so much." I grinned.
"We didn't do anything, just stopped by to make sure you kids weren't doing anything rebellious." Brian shrugged, casting us a warning look.
We all nodded, suddenly serious. They stood up, and as they were filing out, Sebastian dropped something that clanked to the floor. A swiss army knife. Austin pocketed it wordlessly, and I suddenly felt more safe.
"So, say we do get out. How many of us? Who's going? When?" Charlie wondered.
"A small number. People they wouldn't miss. And as soon as possible." Austin said.
"I'll go. I know those hallways better than anyone. I'll find Jonathan and Clara, take some pictures with this." I brandished the phone, suddenly feeling fearless.
They nodded. "We'll try to keep everyone else in line." Austin said.
"I can poke around in the Main House, see if there's anything worth noting down." Clara stated.
"I'll aim to leave in two days. That'll give me enough time to take pictures and stuff." I decided.
Charlie hugged me. "And if, for whatever reason you are unable to escape and get help, Austin and I will find someone else to take your place."
I sighed, smiling at them both. "You are amazing, both of you."