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.”