Another particularly short chapter, but I had to cut it off so I could lead into Chapter 10!
I spent a good hour working on the lock. It was a nice distraction. I’d spent most of my time detailing what had happened so far.
“Marina, did you happen to find anyone else from the crew, besides Chase?”
“He was the only one.”
There was something about the questions I’d been asked, along with the long periods of silence inbetween that made me wonder if they knew something that I didn’t. Finally, I found the courage to ask, “Are you hiding something from me?”
“This room isn’t exactly a palace. There’s nothing we could hide.” Cotto shrugged.
“I meant something you know.”
The silence dragged on again, until through the tiny crack under the door, I heard footsteps. I flew away from the lock, and discreetly coughed, “Someone’s coming,”
The door swung open. A tall man stood there was a plate of food. “I’ve got—”
Cotto tackled him, Halon and I jerking back in surprise. The force of impact as his head hit the ground knocked him unconscious. Cotto glanced back at us. “Well, I was getting sick of waiting for the lock.”
“I guess that works too.” I muttered. “Could you guys wait here? There’s someone else I need to find.”
“You’re not getting out of my sight again.” Cotto narrowed her eyes.
There really wasn’t any arguing with Cotto. I shrugged and pointed down the long metal hallway. “He’s in here somewhere.”
“Who are we looking for exactly?” Halon asked.
“Black hair, green eyes—you’ll know him when you see him. Everyone on this ship seems to be wearing uniforms besides us.”
Doors must have been quite in style when the ship was built, because there were more of them than molecules of oxygen. Cotto checked the rooms on the left side of the hallway, while Halon and I checked the ones on the right.
I’d opened too many doors that led to empty storage rooms, but finally we reached what I assumed were the crew’s quarters. A plethora of empty bedrooms, each slightly differing from the last. The second to last door in the hallway, I pushed open ever so slightly, as I had every other door.
My heart stopped cold. It was like a train wreck—I couldn’t watch, but I couldn’t look away. “What?” Halon whispered urgently.
I couldn’t find the words. I couldn’t even think or breathe.
“Marina, what?” He hissed, unable to see through the crack. Couldn’t the universe just leave me alone? Couldn’t it just let me go on my merry way? What had I ever done that made me deserve all of this? Why me?
I slammed the door open, not even caring if any of the enemy crew heard. “Marina, keep the volume down!” Cotto stage whispered. She didn’t even know. She couldn’t even comprehend what I knew.
My voice hitched in my throat, but I managed to rasp, “Talon?”
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