A New Hope



I’ve got so many questions running through my head, like when did Ryan be sent away? He had still been at the mall when i was caught. In a way it is good to see Ryan cry, its good for him to let his feelings out, not think about what other people say or do. Everyone should show their feelings, i still hug him. He talks about Salene and the baby, he’s probably right the baby should have been born by now. I can’t help but to wonder if it is a girl or a boy, it nearly feels as if its a real sibling.

He runs his finger down my face and I look at him, tears welling up in my eyes. I dont feel grown up and I’m not sure that my parents would be proud. Who would be proud of having a daughter who betrayed her friends? Helped the enemy?

“i’m so glad your here Ryan” I say as I rest my head on his chest listening to his heartbeats. Feeling heat coming from him, i feel safer then I what i have been in ages. Fighting a yawn, and eyelids that are growing heavy I fail and drift of to sleep as i listen to Ryan’s heartbeats.


Smiling as I look at Patsy

“We all make mistakes” I whisper

She lays her head on my chest and I wrap my arm around her…

“I will try and keep you safe, I will always look after you”

Renewing my promise to her, hoping nothing breaks it, I look down and she she has fallen asleep on my chest, holding her close, my eye lids feel heavy, feeling exhausted, knowing we need to conserve all our energy, not knowing where our next drink or meal is going to be, I drift off to sleep…


Chuckling, I leave Slade and May to their invertebrate-trapping and wander back across the rocks toward the sandy beach we’d landed on. I’d planning to do some exploring of my own but, from a distance, I can see the scouting party has returned from their venture and I’m eager to know what they’ve uncovered.

Lex seems like a viable candidate for a little information probing and he’s sitting away from the rest of the group, wistfully gazing out to sea… Ah, I can almost hear the poignant backing track… Hmm… Hmm… Hmm…

“Whatcha thinkin’ bout?” I ask in a goofy voice, stepping abruptly into his line of sight. Turning to look in the direction he’s facing, I give a groan. “Ugh. Aren’t you sick of that view? It’s all so… blue.” Blue. Blue. Blue. Blue. Blue. Blue. Blue. Sometimes grey. But mostly blue. It was all we’d seen from the boat for two weeks and I, for one, was thoroughly bored of it.

I’m standing directly between him and the sea view he’d been gazing out upon so pensively before I interrupted, impossible to ignore. “So!” I urge him. “What’d you find?” I know Lex and I don’t expect him to be forthcoming about their discoveries, but, hey, I’m a guy who loves to try. Besides, if I don’t get what I want, I might never leave him alone.


'Huh, clever." I respond to Ram’s comment about the crabs, with a wry look.
I think for a moment but can’t come up with a good comeback.
I sigh in defeat and turn back to Slade. @Flamekeeper

"Do you even know how to prepare crab? You don’t seem like much of a cook to me.“
I then realize that my comment may be taken in the wrong way and quickly follow it up with
"I mean, since you’re a tough biker and all… You know…”

I look around the rocks looking for something eatable while still remaining close to Slade.


I roll my eyes with a sigh as Ram comes over. “Currently? Just how long it would take for me to drown you in the ocean.” I retort, I thought getting off the boat meant I could have my space. I guess I was wrong.

Ram blocks my view and asks what we found. “Didn’t you hear? I fully stocked food store, and the adults. Turns out they popped over to this island to get away from annoying people.”


Staring at the man in front of me my fingers automatically reach for the lock on the cage. As I touch the metal I realise what I’m doing and shake my head as if to wipe the daze away, seeing Patsy had really thrown me and now I was projecting onto another prisoner because, why? I didn’t want to see Bray, or any of the other Mall Rats for that matter. I didn’t care about them, and they obviously didn’t care about me… because if they had, if he had… stepping back from the cage I try and knock the thoughts out of my head. Reaching up to tug at the collar of my uniform I sigh, if this was virtual reality it really sucked.

Turning away from the prisoner I look around for Zandra, but all I can see if a couple of other Techno’s, who’s names I can’t remember, and the cages. No, don’t look in the cages. Better to be this side and not thinking about it than back inside one of those. I’d made my choice the day I’d put the uniform on for the first time, there was no going back, no Mall Rats, this was who I was now and a face from the past wasn’t going to change that.

Looking around for a moment I ponder my choices, I could leave Zandra to deal with this and just go about my day… except I couldn’t do that, even if I wanted to, she was my friend and I didn’t want her to get in trouble. Heading towards the cabin I push the door open and pause when I spy her routing through the paperwork, looking back outside I check we aren’t being watched before pulling the door shut. “What are you doing?” I ask, the disapproval obvious in my voice, “we aren’t allowed to go through that… please tell me you at least checked the order before you did this?” Gesturing to the disarray I glance back at her, “because if not, we are screwed.”


“Ooh, Lex…” I croon mockingly. “I think of you sometimes, too!” Hmm… Six minutes for the average human brain to expire from oxygen deprivation, if memory serves. They always put up such a struggle it feels like longer. Time-consuming and impractical really.

I cross my arms and shake my head slowly, clicking my tongue in response to Lex’s sarcastic quip. Speaking of time-consuming and impractical… “Don’t be difficult.” I say to him, unamused. “I’m going to find out, so you might as well just tell me now and get it over with!” I flash a lopsided grin and say finally, “And then… I’ll leave you alone. You can go back to your manly brooding.”


“Great idea!” I say to Ellie as we walk towards the trees"I wonder what they used this island for thoug?" I say out loud. “Sorry ignore me!” I say as I start to wonder about this place.


I followe Alice and take a small bottle of water. I bring the bottle of water up to my lips and take a long sip. Part of me wants to down the water, the fresh feeling making me realise how thirsty I really am but I stop myself from finishing the whole bottle. I screw the lid back on and put the bottle in my back pocket.

I observe Alice walk round one side of the cage and I decide to go the other way. As I walk round I find myself facing another cage. I strain my eyes as I scan over the faces of the prisoners. My eyes lock on a young girl, her tribal markings remind me of days back in the city. I offer her one of my award winning smiles and she smiles back. She walks to the end of her cage and I give her a cheeky wink.

“don’t know if there are any Mallrats in your cage, do ya?” I ask her as I look around making sure we aren’t being watched.

She shrugs her shoulders and is about to turn away…“please…can you check” I beg her “I’ll make it up to you”

she nods in agreement and tells me to stay where I am before she dissapears into the crowd.


I’d like to see Ram try and kill me, I almost want to call him on his bluff wade out into the water, but that would than leave me with wet clothes and I’d rather not.

“Promise?” I highly doubt this will be the last time Ram annoys me, but if it gets him out of my hair for a few hours I’d be grateful. “Some abandoned building, looked official. Trudy went off the deep end before we got a proper look.”


I pay attention to Ram’s body language, that shrug the brush off tone, the sarcasm…I can’t weave between his joking and the truth. I am acquainted enough with the guy to know he isn’t lying but he might know more than he’s letting on. If not for the interruption I could’ve pried. With May there he knows he is off the hook, excusing himself with that innuendo that is not lost on neither I nor May. @Sheepleat

May let’s him go without much retort giving me her attention.

“Who says tough men can’t cook?” I smile. “I knew how to make the trap didn’t I?” That ought to say I know a little something about it. I am not offended. More so amused. There is a lot unknown about me. I prefer it that way.

“I am not much of a chef, you’re right, but one picks up a thing or two to keep from starving to death. Wouldn’t you say?”


Sitting at the bage of the big cage away from everyone else Patsy ( @Patsy) still asleep on my chest, I notice one of the other prisoners walking around and talking to people, she looks at the hands of the sleeping people, wondering what shes looking for she comes towards Patsy and I, she looks at the pentagram scratched into Patsy’s hand and then looks towards my hand and the faded pentagram on mine, the symbol we once had to show we were mall rats, I move my hand away…

“Are you mall rats?” she whispers looking around to make sure no one is watching…

“Once perhaps” I say quietly

“Whats your name?”


Feeling uncomfortable with all of her questions…

“Theres a guy in that cage” she points “he asked if there is any mall rats in here and asked me to look”

“Ryan and Patsy”

I say worried, not knowing who shes talking about, I don’t know where anyone is and don’t really care as long as I know Patsy is ok… I watch as she disappears back through our prison and back to KC (@Katsy)


“Techno’s honour. Cross my heart.” I assure him, marking an invisible X over the approximate location of the organ with a finger. “… As long as I’m satisfied, that is.”

I listen carefully to his recount… for all of the ten seconds it lasts for. “That’s it?” I ask in disbelief. “Come on, Lex! You’ve gotta give me more than that! What else? Official how?” Were there computers? I want to ask, but it seems more prudent to play it cool. Like a cucumber. I’m sure if they’d uncovered a Techno facility and knew it, I’d be the one being interrogated, rather than the interrogator.

I stroke my jaw thoughtfully. Something set Trudy off, huh? Interesting…


“That’s it. Took us longer to walk to the place than looking around.” I pick up a small chunk of driftwood and play with it. “It was big.” I turn my head to the rest of the group so they can hear and shout. “We could be staying there tonight instead of this beach.” I don’t know if anyone heard.


I was stupid to think that she would return, it wasn’t like I had anything to give to her once she brought me the news. I’m about to turn away and head back to Alice when I see her making her way back trough the crowd. She leans against the fence and smiles at me and I can’t help but smile back.

“Did you find any of the Mallrats?” I question with a sinking feeling inside me.

“I did…but first what’s in it for me?”

Crap, she remembered! I think for a moment and then give her one of my best smiles, “if you bring them to the dense, when we escape…which we will…we will help you and your friends”

“You really think you can escape?”

Feeling a little bit of hope inside me I can’t help but smile “we’re Mallrats…of course we will escape…we found the cure for the virus, we took down Zoot, we defeated the Chosen…so yes we will escape”

She rolls her eyes at me clearly bored of my little story, “they don’t seem like they are up for a fight but I will see if they will come to you” she turns away and heads back into the crowd.

“Hey” I call after her “what are their names?”

“Ryan and Patsy” she calls back.


“So…” I take a pause, holding up a hand. “Let me get this straight – You all go gallivanting off through the wilderness in search of answers… but… upon finally reaching your destination, promptly decide to leave… because, what? Trudy didn’t like the vibe of the place?!” I scoff incredulously. “Man, you guys really seem like you know what you’re doing. Fills me with confidence.”

I’m beginning to feel gradually irritable again. What little patience I recovered during my time away from the others is wearing thin. To make matters worse, the side of my neck is suddenly really itching me. I scratch at it sullenly. Knowing my luck, I’m probably allergic to one of the plants I touched when I was–

“Yeugh!” I yelp, staring at Lex in scandalised alarm. “Something bit me!”


The girl slowly makes her way back up the cage, she comes over to Patsy (@Patsy) and I…

“Your wanted down there”

She points to the other end of the cage

“By who??” I ask

“I don’t some guy with green hair” she snaps

“What does he want??”

“I don’t know, what do I look like a messenger!!!” she snaps again "go find out yourself!’ she says harshly before walking away…

I sit thinking, going over and over in my head wondering who it could be then I realise…

“KC!!” (@Katsy)

Patsy sturs a little, I kiss her on the head, I guess this is the safest shes felt in a long time, my heads still a mess, loads of things going round and round, still scared to believe if this is real or not…


Somehow I manage to sleep through Ryan’s (@Salene ) first conversation with the girl. I wake up as Ryan says KC. I rubb my eyes looking at Ryan. “Kc?” I ask confused looking to Ryan, why is he saying Kc?

I feel confused, like ive missed something, thought i do feel more rested then i have in a long time. For once I feel safe, I feel as if i’ve got a part of my family back


I watch the girl walk off, as I say ‘KC’ Patsy (@Patsy) wakes up, she rubs her eyes and sleeping looks at me with a confused face, I hear her say ‘KC’ questioning me…

“That… that girl” I stutter “she said someone in the next cage was asking about mall rats, she said he had green hair, I think its KC”

I look at her as her eyes get wider…

“If… If KC is alive then maybe Bray, Cloe, Alice and the others are alive and here too…”

My voice trails off, I don’t mention Salene… I don’t know where she is…


Ryan (@Salene) speaks about the girl and that she had said tthat someone was asking about mallrats. Oh I hope he’s right. I nod my head slightly. Wait, Bray’s gone as well and ALice? I look at him still confused. “I thought Bray, Alice and Kc were at the mall” I say in a whisper.

I must have missed a lot, i push myself up from the sand. “We should go and look to see who it is” i say and hold out my hand to help him up