Facil awoke to the roar of an engine. He slowly regained his senses, still feeling quite numb. "uugh, wath happen?" The hedgehog spoke through a still waking body. He shifted in place, feeling the restraints of straps across his body keeping him pinned to his seat.
"Mornin' there sunshine," Miracle greeted him dryly, even though the sun was beginning to head down. Facil glanced over, nearly giving himself motion sickness in the process. She was manning the wheel while dressed in some off duty garments.
"Donth call me dat," Facil still remembered very well that Myra was on his shit list. The only thing keeping him from slapping her silly was the waning paralysis that kept him sedated enough to remain seated.
"Well seeing you miserable brings a smile to my face," Mira replied with a dirt eating smirk on her face. Thankful the infuriating image couldn't be made out by the hedgehog's less than clear vision. A series of bangs and muffled cries barred by a gag had made themselves apparent to Facil, calling for his attention.
"Whaz dat?" Facil flailed about, trying to get his noodle arms to find the belt buckle to unfasten himself. He felt Miracle's arm planted firmly on his shoulder, holding him down in his seat.
"Something that doesn't concern you, keep your spiky ass planted," The wolf ordered, drawing up a deep suspicion from within the hedgehog. The hedgehog let out a gurgling grumble, wishing his affliction would melt away so he could properly fight against her.
"It probably should," Cid cut in from the back of the cruiser. They were all in this journey together, the hedgehog deserved to know the situation. "See as we're probably breaking the law at this point..." The cockatoo bounced his index fingers off of each other.
"Oh Pul-leeze!" Miracle rolled her eyes at Cid's statement as his words weighed more on her lead foot. "A murderer is worried about breaking the law!" She threw his past into his face to shut him down, it only lit a fire under his tail feathers.
"That was personal justice!" Cid argued back, becoming rather heated over the wolf's blind accusation. "What would you know about that anyways?!" The cockatoo scowled at Miracle, hoping he wouldn't have to knock some sense into her as well.
"The simple fact that it was against the law is all the proof I need to call you out on that..." Miracle snickered, "And if it wasn't, why did you run from it? Surely the law would have seen your brand of vigilante justice as A-O-K, right?" The wolf's tone was extremely sarcastic, not feeling any pity for the cockatoo's tragedy.
"Shut the hell up! I've watched you gun down the Burrow for the fun of it! If you want to play that game, it's because of that we're in this mess!" Cid remained adamant in his position, believing to be morally superior to the mischievous red wolf.
"JUZ TELL ME WHUTZ GOIN' ON!" Facil bellowed, feeling more of his strength returning. His outburst had taken both the wolf and cockatoo by surprise, silencing their quarreling instantly.
"Sheesh, fine!" Miracle finally budged on the matter, not wanting to get talked down to by the cockatoo. "We commandeered a cruiser..." She could feel Cid's looming glare over her. "That wasn't ours..." The cockatoo cleared his throat. "Aaaand we have a captive," the wolf played it off with an awkward chuckle.
"A whut?!" Facil thrashed about again, this time clicking himself free from his seat, scrambling about to see their captive. Peeking over his seat, the hedgehog needed to wipe his eyes to focus on the apprehended being quivering in the back.
"...E-... Eddie?" Facil recognized the samoyed's boyfriend. "Is that you?" The iguana's mood had turned from fear to relief as he moaned against his gag, most likely for help if the hedgehog had to assume.
"But hey!" Miracle cut in again, "Commander's daughter and commander's pet," She motioned to herself and the hedgehog with a hand." How much trouble can we really get in, right?" She listed off the positives, hoping their status alone would score them a lighter punishment if they were caught. Cid shook his head, knowing it was just wishful thinking.
"And no commander, Do you know how suspicious we'd be if they caught us? Regardless if we're innocent, they won't buy our alibis if they find us like this." The cockatoo explained, the paranoia growing in the back of his mind.
"That's why we're heading straight back, no bullshit," Mira kept the cruiser in motion, blazing a one way trail to home base. "Sooner we can report, the better off we'll be." She kept optimistic about the situation.
"And what are we gonna do about the extra weight?" Cid brought up the issue of Eddie. Their captive was sure to sing. "Do you really trust he won't blab? The dude's close to pissing himself out of fear!"
"I can't help that I have such a way with words," Mira patted herself on the back, her acquisition of the cruiser required no words whatsoever. Using her brute strength and apprehending skills to get what she wanted.
"I don't even want to know what you told him," Cid tried not to entertain the thought, knowing the red wolf's deranged mind reached the dark corners of sinister carnal desires. "Facil, you know this guy right? Maybe calm him down a bit," The cockatoo suggested as he gestured a backwards thumb at the iguana.
"Uh... I can try," Facil scratched the back of his head, feeling his pelt coming back to life. Glancing over to Eddie, Facil offered an awkward wave from his seat. "Uh... Hi," The hedgehog was at a loss for words. Their only moment shared was over a com video call his girlfriend was hosting. He wasn't exactly buddy-buddy with the lizard, but I guess a familiar face would be enough after the hell he's been through. "Rough day, huh?" Facil threw the statement out there, unsure if he was sincere or sarcastic about it.
Eddie nodded with a stifled hum of acknowledgment. Facil almost wanted to smack him upside the head, the lizard's current struggles were nothing compared to the calamity the hedgehog faced personally, he would trade places with the lizard in a heartbeat if it meant having Myra back. You don't know the half of it... The hedgehog muttered in his thoughts. It was probably best not to tell him he was getting a new boss.
"Yeah, same here," Facil could only make small talk, but Cid motioned for the hedgehog to cut to the chase sooner rather than later. "Anyways, I have a big favor to ask," Facil's eyes darted between Eddie and Cid. "...Can you keep this under wraps? We're in a bind here, and needed to get back to base as soon as possible." The fear still lingering behind Eddie's eyes had the hedgehog unsure if he would be able to trust the iguana's word.
Eddie nodded anyways, though Facil had another idea, "Cid, can you take the rag out of his mouth?" He figured it would be a step closer into gaining the lizard's trust. The cockatoo hesitated for a bit, looking to Miracle for an objection.
"If he starts acting back up, put it back on," The wolf laid down the conditions if the lizard proved to be a nuisance. Cid nodded, complying with the hedgehog's wishes. He wedged the makeshift gag from the reptile's mouth.
"Ugh!" Eddie, took in a breath through his mouth, "Thanks," He expressed his gratitude, more towards Facil than the others. "Seeing your face here really helps... I thought I was a goner honestly."
"Nobody's gonna kill you," Facil reassured the lizard. "We're just really desperate to get home, that's all we want." The hedgehog explained their plight, hoping to gain some sympathy for their drastic actions.
"Couldn't you have requested a cruiser from HQ?" Eddie wondered why they went through the hassle of hijacking his instead. Miracle was swift to respond to his question, more out of retaliation than clarification.
"Have you dealt with Empyrean service before? You could make it back by walking before they find the time to drop off a replacement vehicle!" Miracle gripped the steering wheel. "And FYI, we're in a rush if it wasn't abundantly clear." Eddie couldn't complain, having been victim to slow responses from Empyrean before.
"I see where you're coming from... But all you had to do was ask and I could have drove you there myself," The wolf's act of highway robbery had rubbed him the wrong way, leaving him pretty miffed.
"You'll come to find out Mira doesn't ask," The cockatoo informed the lizard on better understanding the ways of the thieving red wolf. Miracle chuckled, taking Cid's comment as a compliment.
"I do have a way with persuasion." She glanced down at her organic hand as she removed it off the wheel to exam her set of claws in a smug fashion. Facil rolled his eyes at her bragging. "But I'll keep it in mind next time," Miracle added, not making any promises. Eddie prayed that there wouldn't be a next time to begin with.
"I can see that..." Eddie grumbled, wishing the wolf wasn't so full of herself. All he could do now was wait for his predicament to end. "You said you were heading to home base right?" He glanced at the hedgehog. directing his question at him. "...Might as well pay Jennifer a little visit while I'm there," The iguana tried to look on the bright side.
"Yeah," Facil began, "Our vacation kind of got cut short," he explained without spilling the vital details. Eddie nodded his head, following along with the hedgehog's story, "So we're heading back."
"That sucks, bro," Eddie offered a shred of his sympathies. Unlike the rest of the group, he was stationed on patrol within the city. He couldn't feel completely bad for their off time being ruined. Though his patrol being interrupted was also a plus, whatever gave him an excuse to meander away from duties was a win in his book.
"Yeah..." The hedgehog sank back into his seat, the grim reminder of their late commander returned to his thoughts again. Eddie didn't give too much thought over Facil's sudden change in emotion. As far as the iguana knew, the rookie was still shook up over the whole matter, he figured the Hedgehog would get used to it eventually. The cockatoo let out a yawn he couldn't hold back.
"I'm heading straight to bed when we get back, I just want to forget about today." Cid spoke his thoughts aloud, not letting anyone or anything get in the way of the comfy embrace of his pillow and blanket.
I wish... Facil murmured, knowing he would be tossing and turning with nightmares the moment sleep would take him. Even with Yuki gone, there was no one to console him... Unless he fancied cuddling up to Cid, but Facil knew the cockatoo would probably enjoy that a little too much. He was completely alone in his struggles.
His eyes fell to the commander's gauntlet, remembering her fondly. If only you were still here... Facil spoke to the piece of tech through his thoughts. Maybe we wouldn't have to steal a vehicle to get back to base. The hedgehog caressed the gadget with his other arm, wishing he could still feel her.
He could feel Miracle's gaze coming and going. If the hedgehog had to assume, she was probably eyeing up the commander's comarm. If anyone wanted that thing more right now, it was the commander's own daughter. Facil wouldn't give it up without a fight, no matter the costs. Miracle would have to claim it over his own dead body.
Not even Empyrean protocol could make him relinquish his new keepsake. Empyrean didn't even matter at this point, Facil would depart the first chance he got. It didn't matter where the destination, he had every weapon known to Empyrean on his side, let the military try and hunt him down, he was self sufficient with Myra's com.
"So..." Eddie started up again, "How long until we make it back to base?" His comment rubbed Miracle the wrong way, knowing it had the potential to be reoccurring. She wasted no time putting the iguana back in his place.
"Ask me again and you'll be going back to base in that gag." She threatened, getting an immediate reaction out of Eddie as he shaped up completely.
"Y-yes ma'am!" He zipped his lips, not looking to get that groady rag jammed back in his mouth. Eddie wasn't sure how far their destination was, but Mira knew that the distance they covered in spacecraft made their trip time practically nothing, getting back to base on the ground would prove to be a little more time consuming.
Mira let out a grunt in response, letting silence return to the group. Everyone seemed to be lost in their own thoughts. Cid's fear pondering the questionable safety Empyrean had to offer. If a City was leveled like that within a day, who knows what they could do with an Empyrean base if given the chance. Myra had their best interest in mind, Empyrean didn't. With the Commander killed in action... It made the cockatoo question if their division would start making some big changes.
The bird was filled with questions, but none that he wanted to ask in the company of Facil nor Miracle. Maybe if Yuki was around, he could confide the questions with her, but she was missing without a trace. If Amber would take the commander's place, Cid wouldn't think twice of looking for a transfer or putting in his resignation.
Miracle on the other hand, wanted nothing more but to leave Empyrean behind. Going back was only for the sole purpose of collecting her things, and leaving whether Empyrean agreed to it or not. Nothing would keep her from finally attaining the freedom she wanted, the freedom her mother kept her from.
Well... Almost anything. The wolf's mind wandered towards the unlikely possibility that she became the commander of the base. If only birthright carried weight among Empyrean the title was good as hers. Empyrean could have what they want, and Miracle could have the freedom she wanted on her terms.
Unlike the other's, Eddie's mind was on his stomach, both he and his stomach groaning in unison for something to satiate his hunger. He refused to speak up, knowing a home cooked knuckle sandwich from Miracle wouldn't do him any good. Fortunately, his verbal suffering hadn't fallen on deaf ears as Cid couldn't leave the poor guy starving.
The lizard's hunger had reminded the cockatoo of his own. There was probably bound to be something to snack on stored around in here. His nose was picking up on something or other stowed away. Seeing as it was Eddie's vehicle, it wasn't kept in the best conditions... Plus it wasn't only food Cid's beak was picking up. What a pigsty... Cid muttered in his thoughts as he began sifting through the drawers and containers.
The iguana gritted his teeth, cringing as he could only stand by and watch the cockatoo get nosy in his belongings. If Cid knew about his relationship with Jennifer, he would have been a little more concerned with why he had some... Incriminating photos of his female squad mates in pin up poses stashed about. Cid scattered the images out of sight the moment his eyes registered what they were. God, what a pervert, the cockatoo kept his comments to himself, not wanting to start anything with tensions already strained.
Eventually Cid hit the goldmine, finding some MRE's stocked up behind a cabinet door. "Ah-ha," the cockatoo proclaimed silently, snagging a few of the discoveries. Without a word he tossed two of them to Facil and Miracle. Snapping them both from their thoughts for a few moments.
"What the-?" The wolf nearly stammered, taken by surprised, though she too grew silent as she realized what she was given. She didn't bother with her thanks, block food like this was terrible to begin with. Miracle would hold out if need be. Facil wasted no time opening his, still unbeknownst to the joys of the packaged goods.
Instinctively, Cid offered one to Eddie as well, tossing it to his feet. Though his generosity of the lizard's own goods was met with a scowl. It didn't take long for the bird to realize his mistake in mid tear of his own meal. "Oh... My bad," Cid reclaimed the tossed gift, reminded that Eddie was still tied up, unable to eat without aid. He glanced over to Miracle, hesitant to ask her if he could at least untie the iguana's hands to eat. The cockatoo shook his head, it was too much trouble for what it was worth. He would have to feed the poor sap by hand.
"Here, lemme help." Cid made an exchange, giving Eddie his own as he ripped off the rest of the wrapper. "Open up," The bird didn't beat around the bush, as awkward as it was, this was how it had to be. Eddie winced, feeling like a pathetic infant in his situation. Being spoon fed was something far beneath him. His stomach didn't care, calling out to be fed. "...Well?"
The iguana fought to put his dwindling pride aside. Cid wasn't a fan of it either, but if their captive wanted to make an issue of it, he was okay letting him starve too. Eddie let out a pitiful whimper before finally giving into his stomach. He opened up slowly, his jaw jittering slightly from the shame and embarrassment from it all.
"Now that wasn't that hard now, was it?" Cid congratulated the iguana on his cooperation as he brought the bar into the lizard's mouth. Eddie said nothing as he chomped down sheepishly, embarrassment holding his tongue. "Don't worry, I won't tell the ladies about this," the cockatoo chuckled, entertaining the thought of what the lizard's image would turn into if anyone found out about it.
"You'll tell no one," Eddie managed the nerve to say. He wanted to threaten Cid over it, but his situation didn't allow for that type of negotiation. Cid glanced over his shoulder at the pair in the front for a brief moment before returning his focus to the iguana, offering a halfhearted shrug.
"Well... I won't tell anyone," Cid restated, unable to speak for his squad mates. Eddie groaned over the bird's statement, knowing Mira would probably blab if she actually knew him... Or Facil letting it accidentally slip in a casual conversation with Jennifer. Maybe it wasn't too late to break free and start a new life with a new name...