Author's note: I just had to write more. I get hooked on my chracters, and I have to finish with them.
Break AwayWhether or not the chip still had some affect on my freewill, I had no problem with honoring my mom’s request. She told me to kick butt, and I did just that. I cut down the first wave of henchmen in a matter of minutes, and knocked Red-Pseudo out on my way to the elevator, melting his guns while I was at it.
Five floors of crappy music, the elevator finally came to a stop, and the doors slid open with an audible ‘ding’, and I was met with the long barrel of a bazooka. I shot the henchman who was holding it with a thick energy beam that sent him fly down the hall into an old nurse’s station.
I picked the bazooka up, and carried it to a janitor’s closet, where I stashed it out of sight, so a henchman couldn’t come along and decide he’d give it a whirl. I heard Black Wrath’s command to wait until he told them to fire when I opened the door to his office, and walked inside. A good thirty, to forty henchmen waited for me with Black Wrath in their midst, changed into his usual clothes, the blood red coat and black boots.
“Hmm, so there’s what, like thirty of you guys,” I said, “And one of me. I don’t think that’s too fair. Are you sure you don’t want to call reinforcements? I’d hate to beat you when you’re outnumbered.”
He gave me an irritated smile, “I had hoped that our partnership would’ve worked out, but seeing as how the chip no longer affects you, I’m sorry to say that you will have to die.” I waited, but no death came, no shot from a single gun and I laughed at the expectant look on Black Wrath’s face as he waited for his henchmen to shoot me down. He had forgotten to tell them to shoot me.
I didn’t give him time to realize his fatal mistake. I jumped into the pile of henchmen, taking four on at a time until they were all unconscious; all thirty of them, until it was only me against Black Wrath. He stood by the windows, bending over to grab out the long dagger that he always kept in his boot. He beckoned me forward with a taunting finger, and I was surprised that he didn’t disappear in a cloud of smoke when I did come at him. I was surprised that the window in his office wasn’t ‘Glimpse-proofed’.
We crashed right through the glass, and I had to remind myself to fly when he disappeared out from under me, and I saw the ground rapidly approaching. I landed lightly on my feet, and cameras flashed wildly. I looked around, and saw that the police had taped off the perimeter. I saw my parents elbowing in beside the reporters.
Black Wrath appeared in front of me, and I barely ducked in time as he attempted to stab me. I grabbed his arm, and let my hands go white hot like they had when he ordered me to kill my parents. As much as this raw energy hurt me, it hurt him even more. He let out a strangled cry, dropping his dagger, and clutching his arm. I had burned a hole right through his coat, his shirt, and part of his arm, so that he had a red burn in the shape of my hand in his skin. I shot him in the face with an energy beam, kicked him in the stomach, and sent him flying into the side of a police van.
He shot up to his feet angrily, and disappeared before the cops could grab him, materializing a few feet away from me, digging a small silver disk out of his coat. “You see this, my dear nemesis? This is the remote control to the chip in your head. I had Stanley add a self destruct button to the chip in case something like this should happen. You will surrender to me, and take out those police men, or I will push that button, and you can say goodbye to your life.”
I looked at him incredulously, “Do you think I value my own life over theirs?” I gestured to the police, to the media, to my parents, and curious onlookers. “You have nothing on me.” I shot the device out of his hand just the same, and I knocked him out with a few well-placed energy bombs.
The police moved in quickly, cuffing Black Wrath. “If you have something, I suggest you use whatever thing that can hold him. I didn’t hit him that hard, so I doubt he’ll be out too long,” I called, and an elderly police officer smiled.
“Oh don’t you worry, Black Wrath is going away for a l-o-n-g time.” He replied, as his men snapped some sort of white collar on Black Wrath’s neck, and matching cuffs on his hands. They yanked him up to his feet, and stowed him in the van. The police that had gone into the building followed Stanley out. He walked freely, no handcuffs, with only one gun pointed steadily at his back.
He smiled when he saw me, and pressed two fingers to his head to say goodbye, as he walked without a fight to the van. Andrew followed them, snapping pictures. I wondered why he wasn’t in handcuffs, but I assumed it was because he had posed as a gutsy photographer. He walked straight up to me, dropping his camera on the ground, and he kissed me. Just flat out kissed me!
He pulled back with a smile, and I slapped him hard across the face.
“Ow!” He complained.
“You deserve it! Heck you deserve more than that, but murdering you would make me look worse,” I hissed, walking away from him.
Andrew grabbed my arm, and whirled me around, ignoring my struggling, “Riley, It was an act. It was all an act. Stanley said Black Wrath would kill you if I didn’t help him. It killed me what they did to you. Honest. I love you, and that’s never going to change. Please. Please! Forgive me.”
I stared at him in disbelief. I wanted to trust him, to believe every single word he was saying, but how could I?
“Kiss me,” I said, not caring. I couldn’t take it anymore. I couldn’t hate him, not even if he was truly a stooge carrying out Black Wrath’s will. I loved him to much.
“What?” He asked, a smile tugging at the corner of his mouth.
“I said kiss me! Do it before I change my mind, you idiot,” I growled, yanking him down to my level with a fistful of his shirt in each hand. Andrew laughed and did as he was told, his lips soft as mine angrily molded into his. His hands gentle as my nails dug into his skin.
“You think this is over?! I’m not going to jail until you’re dead!”
I looked up from Andrew’s lips, and saw it was a henchman who had broken away from the police. He nudged the self destruct button with his toe, triggering a loud beeping noise in my head that made me drop to one knee, and before anyone could stop him, he crushed the remote under his heel.
“Riley! Riley, are you okay?” Andrew asked, tugging me back up to my feet as a group of police officers jumped the henchman. But the damage was already done.
Stanly broke away from the police, and to my side. My parents ducked under the tape and fought there way to me. “He hit the self destruct button on the chip. She had five minutes,” Stanley called.
“Can’t you get it out of her?” Andrew shouted, shaking Stanley, who looked at me miserably, death in his eyes. The answer was ‘no’ I knew it, so I drowned out his shaky reply, hugging my mom and dad. Mom was sobbing uncontrollably and hugging me, dad’s face was pale as he held us both. Andrew held my hand, his eyes locked on my face, and Stanley closed his eyes with guilt.
“I love you,” I said, tugging away from my parents.
“No!,” Mom sobbed, reattaching herself to me.
“It’ll be okay,” I lied. My face was smooth as I smiled at her, and for once, I was glad that I was a great liar. I removed her hands gently, passing her off to Dad. He held her firmly, kissing my forehead, his eyes red as tears streamed silently down his face.
I turned to Andrew, and he grabbed me, planting his mouth on mine before I could say anything. His hands were rough, as they held me against him, as if some how he hoped to fuse us both together, to become one being, so we could die together. He reached up and yanked my wig off, along with the wig cap, and my hair cascaded down my back. I couldn’t get enough of his lips, knowing this would be the last time, but I had no time to stay and enjoy it any longer.
I broke his grasp, and said a strangled goodbye, tears streaming freely down my face. I didn’t look back as I flew out of his reach. I kept my eyes on the sky, ignoring my reflection in the windows as I flew up the side of a building. Higher. Higher. And a little more. I broke through the lowest clouds.
Now, I realized with a pang of regret that I had flown over this city a hundred times, and had never once stopped to just enjoy the view, and even now, I couldn’t do that. I flew higher still, where the air was cold; making goose bumps rise on my skin, even under the warm costume that Cally had made for me. I flew until the air was so thin that I became light headed, and flying no longer seemed like a constant fight against gravity.
I closed my eyes smiling as I made a mental list of the things I would miss. I only made it to three. One and two were my parents, in no particular order, because I loved them the same, with all my heart. Number three was Andrew.
And then I was a flash; a flash of white light, brighter than the sun; brighter than anything I had ever seen before…