What is one life compared to others needs?
What is a heart if it acknowledges and concedes?
What better fate then to give and not receive?
What more does a soul have then to believe?
Celine waited until her father had retired for the night and undetected and unnoticed found herself at Thar’s home. She stood for a moment and looked at the twin moons of Terra, the stars, and all that the people of Cape Town had fought to preserve then she knocked on Thar’s door.
“Celine, why are you here?” Thar asked looking to see if anyone was with her.
“I came to speak with you in private,” Celine answered, “Can I come in for a moment?”
“Of course,” Thar replied gesturing to her, “Come in and let me know what’s on your mind. Does your father know you are here? Has he sent you?”
“No,” Celine replied as she entered Thar’s home, “I am here and he does not know I came to talk with you.”
Thar motioned for Celine to have a seat, which she did on Thar’s overstuffed sofa. She sat for a moment wringing her tiny hands with a far off look in her eyes.
“What is it that I can assist you with?” Thar eventually asked spying the distressed look on Celine’s drawn face.
“I want to be injected with the virus,” Celine replied her voice so low it was barely audible, “I see no other recourse in all of this. I have no intention of letting the Alliance have Cape Town. All that you and my father have worked for will not be handed over to these murderers. I am willing to pay the price, but on my terms, not theirs.”
Thar gasped as Celine made her intentions clear to him. He sat for a moment sizing the young woman up. He had always known Celine to be level headed and intelligent as she grew into womanhood, but Thar had never realized how caring and devoted Celine actually was.
“Has your father agreed to this?” Thar questioned.
“No he has not,” Celine replied the tone in her voice rising as she answered Thar, “It is my decision and he need never know until it is all over with and done. You know yourself there is no other way.”
Thar sat deep in thought for what seemed an eternity to Celine and then answered, “You are right Celine. There is no other way. I will not inform your father of our talk or the fact you intend carrying this plan out.”
Celine smiled at Thar and thanked him, but Thar could see sadness in Celine’s beautiful eyes he had never seen before. He walked over to where she was sitting and hugged her much as a father would hug his own child. Celine sat with her head down crying.
Thar and Celine spent part of the evening making plans. She would take the injection with her and administer it in route to the Alliance’s headquarters. If she took the injection too quickly Celine would not be able to deceive Thorn and the others. Then all would be lost.
As Celine left Thar’s residence, he handed her a small syringe filled with a liquid. This Celine concealed in her cape’s interior pocket. She turned and thanked Thar as she left promising him she would try her best to carry out their plan.
At first morning’s light Lester came to see Celine. His face was more haggard and worn. He walked as if in a dream state. Celine watched him as he entered her room and hoped when it was over with and done her father’s smile would return.
“Are you ready to go?” Lester asked Celine, “You know it will take you the better part of the day to walk to the rendezvous point?”
“Yes,” Celine answered as she pulled her cape around her shoulders, “I love you father.”
Lester stared lovingly at his daughter and tears streamed down his cheeks. He was so overcome with sorrow it was hard for him to speak.
“Father, please don’t be upset,” Celine said pulling him close, “You know there is nothing we can do. It will be fine. I will be fine.”
Overcome with emotion, Lester clung to his daughter until he had regained his composure. They walked together in silence and with a mutual understanding that this might be their last time together. Tristan greeted the two as they left Celine’s room. She looked back one last time at happy memories she had spent within those four walls and then with brave determination and head held high began her journey.
Celine left Cape Town long before the residence were awake. She wanted no long farewells or well wishes extended. It would take her a day’s travel to reach the appointed meeting place which the Alliance had indicated to her father and the Council.
Although spring had arrived early in Cape Town a cool wind bit cruelly at her exposed skin as she walked alone and unattended. Celine wound her cape tightly around her body. As she traveled she saw the piles of rubble and bits of block which had once been homes. On the ground below her feet lay the ash which her father had spoken of. The Alliance had developed weaponry that could take anything or anyone and with a single blast turn it into what was now littering the ground. She gagged as she studied on the fact some of the ash had been people.
“So many people dead, so much destruction,” Celine wailed to the wind, “How can someone do this to another?”
Time passed slowly and soon Celine realized the pick up point was close at hand. Her fingers shook as she withdrew the syringe from its hiding place. Taking care that no one was present Celine plunged the needle deep into her flesh and released the virus into her vein just as Thar had instructed her to do the night before.
The initial pain of the needle prick was nothing compared to the terrible burning sensation she experienced as the needle’s contents coursed into her system. She wanted to scream, but fear held the outburst in check. She had one attempt to save her people, there were no other options. Soon the throbbing and burning in her arm stopped. Slowly she stood up and walked the short distance to the designated area.
Celine did not have to wait long in the distance she saw the vehicle as the dust cloud approached at break neck speed. She stood and wondered how long it would take for the virus to overtake her immune system. Then her thoughts darted back to her father and brother as the car approached tiny bits of ash and dust settled and clung to her cheeks. With her hand she wiped the tears away; she would not let them see her cry.
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