It was a whole while later when they entered the cafe. Wills and Brays faces looking way better already. Wills cheek wasn’t so angry red anymore and Brays temple already looked like having healed a few days. Brays wrists both bandaged freshly. Will grabbed hungrily for one of the hot dogs Salene and May had knocked off in a hurry. Bray smiled warmly and with radiant happiness seeing his little boy eating with the same good appetite like usual. His little body needed seemingly way more food then the average boy only to keep his normal weight. He was still a little light for his height and that was why he sometimes seemed even more vunerable. But Bray knew of his strength. His son was way stronger in his mind, then even many adults were. He was stubborn and already wasn’t afraid to defend himself and the ones he loved. “Daddy here…” Surprised Bray hurried to take a bite when his son stuck the hot dog into his mouth and chewed. His son giggled “Hihi…” Bray swallowed at grinned at him “Playing the daddy again?” “Hmmm…someone must take care for you!” Will said earnestly, feeding him again. Rhys chuckled “Ah…see…its Bray we need to cuddle and protect and not Will…” “Rhys…” “Not talk daddy you eat!” Will feeded him again and then looked at Rhys “You not annoy my daddy…he is eating now!” “Woa…sorry little comander…” Rhys rolled his eyes and huffed “Pfff…thats sure a side he has from Amber…pfff…” Trudy giggled and hit him softly “Well…and its not a bad side, mind! Give Bray some rest…he must be in awful shock!” “No I am not…” he ate again when his son feeded him more “…actually I feel angry yes. But also…energetic for it finally can come to an end. I don’t have to act anymore…and thats such a huge lift. What just happened out there was the last straw somehow…you…hmph…its hard to explain. I know I never was the exptremly outgoing person to all of you and kept a lot of hurt to myself. But still all of you know I am more the emotional person. Urm…or sensitive like Lex would phrase it…” Lex grinned " When I joined ELITE I only was that way with Rhys and Lucy and a bit with the others. But there were moments were I didn’t know how to act. I felt there was something needed but I just couldn’t grab the fitting emotion. When I sometimes tried to feel myself into someone I had no fitting memory. So I often only copied the actions of others. Since coming here those walls around me have melted more and more. I had acess to long lost emotions. But not only happy ones. Suddenly I felt desperation like the time when KRONOS manipulation drove me to break with Amber for good. I fought myself free for my love towards her and my joy to be Wills father where so way stronger in the end. But of course that freed my fear aswell. Fear for the people I love. More and more emotions flooded in me and I had no real udnerstanding anymore. I felt sometimes like bursting. On my birthday it was the first time I thought I might break for good. I was scared of HELENA, mad at all of you for asking me to act good with her, hate on her and KRONOS, guilt for that hate I felt. Shame for that I let that still hurt me. It seemed too much. I wasn’t used to that anymore and to the same time I KNEW I had once been able to handle many emotions to the same time. I always had been able to order my emotions. But not anymore. Will helped me then to concentrate on my love for him and Amber and my happiness to be home with all of you. The last weeks I realized that I got more and more order in me. I learned to accept and love myself and I really do that. I think I am a good person. I do my best at last. And I think no one can say I never not give my all for the important things. I am a good leader and also a good normal tribe member that takes care to fullfill duties for the tribe. I can handle and balance that different roles. I try my best for being a good father and I think I don’t mess up completely…" He kissed Wills head affectionately “When I see my little one I think I do at last one or two things right! That now…did it…KRONOS threw me in a situation out of my control. I was in panic, felt anger and hate and so much fear…but I could supress to be strong and fight…fight for my family. Hate was cursing through me when I threw that knife but I also aimed only high for I was scared to hit Will. I…I am not proud of it but I was ready to kill when he came down the stairs. But then Ruby stumbled and my emotions sat right. Her and Joshuas life meant more then my revenge. When I came to Will and Amber it suddenly crashed all. Fear, hurt, shame, guilt, panic, love, anger…I was watching myself and didn’t know what was important anymore. You all felt wrong to me. Like enemies. Only Will felt safe. My hurt little boy that I had to protect at all costs. But then…well…I…I let it it happen…I always have fought in the last weeks. Tried to keep control, fought my own feelings. When dark thoughts grabbed me I literally tried to fight myself. But now…it was just like my innerself told me it was okay to finally lose control. And with losing it, I got control back…I can’t explain better. But I really feel good now. Like…like…” “Like a reboot…” Ram nodded “Thats what I always thought the last weeks…when I saw you so down sometimes in paradise…I thought your brain needed a reboot…” “And you couldn’t tell me?” Bray smirked “Would you have understood what I meant?” “No maybe not…but now my ways clear. There won’t be too many emotions at once anymore. I will be able to keep them apart. Actually I was scared when we would go into battle that I would not be able to order things…it all seemed going so fast sometimes. My own evolvement aswell…but now I am settled. I first time feel like my body, soul and mind are on the same step!” he kissed Will again “And you my little hero helped me quiet a lot with that…thank you!” “No problem daddy!” Will said non chalant as if understanding completely what his dad was talking about. Brays laughter washed over them like balm. If Bray could still feel that way, there was no reason to lose hope.
“So will you please tell us now what happened? How did he come here?” Lex lost patience a bit “Well…seemingly my last report about PHOENIX made him so worried he decided to come. Actually I haven’t thought about him being that secretive that he wouldn’t inform new world. I am sorry about that. I underestimanted him. Or more got the wrong line about him. I thought he would go and make me bad looking…but actually as you saw now thats not what he aimed at.” “He wanted to be…you?” Jack crooked his head asking “Hmmm…somehow yes. He wanted to fill in my place. I actually still don’t understand why at all…I mean…why didn’t he use his intelligence to make himself a loved person? He told me he had operations to let his body look like mine. Can you believe that? Who would do that?” “Urm…some maniac?” Ebony offered “Hmph…” “So wait…he wanted the GUARDIAN to not only built up a religion to maybe control you better but to take your place in it one day…to be the hailed new good…?” “Hmmm…” “But what about that panel he trained you on? What about EAGLE MOUNTAIN?” “I don’t know…I maybe could have found out if I would have stayed put, but I couldn’t. He was advancing on my family…” “Wait…from where…what…please start again!” Rhy sshook his head confused. “Well…I came back into my rooms and wanted to rest before I would have trained again. He was waiting for me already. Told me he came to check , being worried because of PHOENIX…he aske dme where HELENA was. I told him she was in her room. That made him wonder…he…he…” Bray looked at Amber “He had raided my rooms a bit and had seen your things…I am pretty sure he has seen your clothes and so on…” She shuddered “I am throwing everything away…ewwww!” He pulled her onto him with one arm, to drop a kiss on her forehead "I told him she has an own room for she wants to keep me interested…he sensed we maybe have trouble…I had to bring him to her and could only hope she would play along. But actually…she sensed my weakness. " He closed his eyes ashamed “She wanted to play along…to kiss me…but I…I couldn’t…” He opened his eyes “I am sorry…but its just not possible to me…I could have maybe saved us that way…but…but…I couldn’t…” “No Bray…don’t apologize for that. You would have given yourself in her hands that way. She would have probably blackmailed you as long as he would have stayed. She would have blackmailed you to take her to your room. To maybe…well…you know…” Ebony looked careful at Will “She knew too much that way. It was a risk what we took with her. Always. It is good you didn’t follow her wish…one time giving in to pressure and blackmailing means only to give in again and again…I know all about it. I operated often like that…” He raised his brows at her and she shrugged "What? I know I am not qualifying for the sameritan angel…we all know that…but I have the advantage that I understand such peoples way of thinking. “Hmmm…well when I recoiled from her she told him everything…then she fleed. He knocked me out and when I woke up I was bounded and he was wearing that high technical mask or whatever it is…he told me he would go into the mall and that he had a camera adorned to himself so that I would be able to watch when he…he…” He swallowed looking down on Amber “…I saw him entering…saw that you were happy first…but then…you looked confused…you noticed my ring missing…” “Can anyone please explain THAT?” Ellie asked “When he showed Amber the ring on his neck I was all devastavated for there was the ring…but Amber…” Amber lifted her hand a bit and they stared at the delicate ring from silver wire with the little silver feather on it “Bray and me…we…” “You married without any of us?” Salene asked a little accusing “It was a private ceremony…promises only face to face…for…for we don’t know…if…if we both…Bray made us that rings after we already had made promises for I felt like it wasn’t meaning much without a common sign…I…” “Shhh…my heart…shhh…” he hugged her tightly “My ring’s here…he didn’t take it. Its good we did that. He took my other things…and I will get them back from him!” He laced the hand with his own self made wedding band through her hand with her band. Their rings laid beside each other that way “I knew that couldn’t be you…” she whispered “The eyes were wrong too…not the colour or so…but the expression…that just felt wrong. When he touched me…there wasn’t that feeling I have whenever you touch me…” “I know what you mean…” he breathed “I could feel its you, even when I would lose my eyesight…no ones touch could feel like yours…” He kissed her gently “I broke myself free and headed here. I came just in when he hit Will…I threw my knife…but I couldn’t truly aim for real for I was scared to hit Will…”
The malls entrance openend and most of them jumped up, ready in fight positions “Hey? Don’t be shocked…its us…” Bray sighed, sitting down again. the other generals had arrived from their different places they had been working in today. HERA came in and hugged Bray and Amber “Oh my god…what happened…?” “Rhys could you tell them? I really need to eat something…” Bray didn’t wait for an answer but took a hot dog for himself now and his son did the same. Rhys recounted and the generals goggled. “That fucking bastard…” “ARES!” HERA reprimanded him and he looked sheepish at the kids “Oh sorry…” “I am sorry that I messed up the chance to get him…” Ruby mumbled “NO Ruby…thats not your fault…I should have thought about his secretive manner…I should have sent a warning about my advice at once…but I thought I could turn it for us. Then I thought I could take him out and we wouldn’t have even to fight. Ts. I am sorry for being arrogant!” “Bray no…if someone should be sorry its us security chiefs…I just don’t get how he could pass the many controls…” Ryan mumbled “Maybe he used Brays face before? Who would control the high comander?” Lottie mused and they all looked surprised “But sure…yeah…thats how he must have done it!” Bray hit his head “But…thats also means…he can use that anytime to collect privates now…damn!” Bray hit his fist on the table “Not with me…Ryan…give out check words…whenever meeting me they should check with me…that will be hell annoying to me but…its easy…” “Okay…” “And then we should…” His boy yawned wide and Bray looked down on him. His eyes showing love “Awwww…I should bring you to sleep first hmm?” “No…me wanna stay daddy!” Will cuddled deeper onto him “You talk…me sleep here…” His eyes shining with love Bray shook his head “Thats not good for you Will…you need a restful sleep…” Amber stroke Wills hair “Daddy is right…you kids can sleep all in your common room and Sebastian and Lottie stay with you…nothing can happen to you…” “I’ll keep guard too!” AJAX reassured the little boy. The other kids seemed to be satisfied with that, especially for AJAX usually entertained them with stories from his orginal heritage being of cheerokee descent. Will usually loved those stories, but now he only hid more on his father “No…stay with daddy…” he looked high into Brays eyes “Please daddy…” His voice was barely a whisper and sounded so scared and young that Bray felt he should go and tore the world apart to find that maniac and make him pay for what he did to his little boy. He hugged him comforting to himself. Maybe other fathers would be strict now and tell their son what to do. But Bray had only done that one time, when he had to leave the mall for a training and had told Will to stay with Rhys till Amber returned to the mall. The crying of Will when he had just left had haunted his nigthmares quiet a while. He wasn’t never asking anything of Will and he reprimanded him for sure if he acted wrong. But always in a gentle way. He always tried to explaint to Will what he had done wrong. But hurt him now after his little heart was hurting already? No way. He needed that bound between them stay intact. He still was scared he might not survive and then at last Will should always have the safe knowledge that his father had loved him deeply and unconditionally. “Okay my little hero…come…” He got up and people looked at him confused “Sorry…but we can’t do anything at all right now anyway. Security is tightened up…all we can do now is wait he shows up again. Musing the whole night won’t bring us more I guess. I can understand you’re all uptight now and feel restless…I do too to a point…but this little guy here needs me now the most! Maybe I can’t always put him first like I would like to, but I can do tonight.” He reached Amber his hand “And you and our other baby too…come…your sister wanted you to rest soon anyway…” “Okay…” She let him pull her up and looked at the others “You all should try to get rest too…think about all the times we were scared and on the edge about something awaiting us…and we got through. Together. We’ll keep the dream alive. Goodnight.” “Goodnight…” everyone whispered while the leader couple went away to their room.
“She is right!” Salene nodded. “Some people would maybe say we lost today for we didn’t manage to overthrow him. But look at it that way: none of us has died or been hurt really bad. Okay we lost our advantage of him not knowing that we know he is not the nice TITAN, but we would have lost that anyway as soon as he would have showed up here. We all would have joined the fight against him anyway. We’re warne dof him as much as he is warned of us. I bet anything he sits now somewhere , working out a stratedgy, that will take some while…so no reason for us to sit here on tenderhooks. That won’t us help fighting better! So lets finsih diner and then up to bed for everyone here!” It was the first time since being leader that Salene had to do a pep talk and the others had to agree that she did quiet well.
Bray was watching Will sleeping tightly snuggled up to his chest. He had sat down on the bed and leant back against the headboard for somehow he had felt that his boy needed more then only sleep on his chest like usual. He needed his fathers arms around him, needed to be kind of caged into that safety that only his father could provide. Amber watched them sitting close by, her heart aching for the hurt of her little boy but also the pain she knew Bray felt. “He will be okay…look at what Brady has gotten through…she was taken away from Trudy and had to be without her alone with the CHOOSEN quiet some while …when we give our love to the children they can overcome.” “Amber this here is not over now…I am pretty sure KRONOS isn’t all alone now out there helpless…no he would have never came here only by himself. We have still no clue what he is aiming at…I destroyed his insane idea somehow now. He wanted to take over my place…I just don’t understand. Who wants to be me?” “Bray…he wants your place…” “But thats the point…why hasn’t he just taken up leadership when the organsiation rose after the virus? It seems like he is the son of the man who had the idea in the first place…only his father didn’t have good intentons but only wanted to fullfill his idea of conquering a new planet for humanity. if I understand that things I was shown by that stranger right, his father unleashed the first virus…he tried to blackmail the goverments of earth and when they didn’t give in…well…if thats true and his father was that way…I am scared of what he even might be ready to do. I wish I could hold Will in my arms till all is over…I feel like he isn’t safe with anyone else…but…but…” He took a breath to stop himself from sobbing. “You’re going to sent us away?” “I don’t want to Amber…but…thats not about me and my stupid heart…its about you and him and our second baby having a chance to survive. You haven’t seen his eyes when he spoke about…well…taking you. He wouldn’t care if you scream and fight and whatever…maybe he wouldn’t even care Will seeing it or hearing it. I am not letting you stay to risk that I lose you both and …Amber…if I would die…that wouldn’t be the worst ! The worst would be to know I leave you behind. Without protection.” “Where do you want to sent us?” “The GAIANS…Hawk has knowledge to bring you to a secret plane…its big enough to take all GAIANS, all the kids here and those we said would join you…it will bring you to…my place at headquarters. ELITE will do anything to keep you safe. I know it doesn’t give all peace, but I think if he gets through with whatever he wants there won’t be a real safe place anymore. There at last you have protection and resources…” “Thats what you talked to Hawk about all that times?” “Hmmm…I am sorry. I know he will hate me if I sent you away now…but…” Finally a sob left him and he cuddled the boy closer “My dad couldn’t provide such things to me before he died, but with his upbringing he made sure I was able to survive. He has taught me useful things all my life and taught me to be careful and respect life. And so…I won’t maybe not be able anymore to teach him many things…so at last I can provide the last safe haven I know of. There he will might be able to find education. Maybe he will see the day KRONOS fails. And you…” he looked at her his eyes suddenly hard "You know what you have to do. You survived without me several times already. Our children have to be your first priority. And if its too hard to think about me…ask Sol to help you…they might be able to …to…program down the pain …I had forgotten about our love at all. I am sure Ram could find a way for that…just live on. " “Bray…you…you’re not meaning that!” She grabbed his face “Okay…I’ll go , but only for I now have seen what he is ready to do and I agree we can’t let the kids be here anymore. I will hide and trust ELITE. But I will trust you aswell. Trust that you beat him, that you find a way and that we can return to you. But if you die…I will never forget you. You can’t ask THAT of me. You’re the love of my life. Forgetting you would mean to kill you in a way. The long we will remember you, you will not have truly left. I will raise our children and tell them all about you and one day…one day…when I die myself…you will wait for me and…and…” She cuddled up to him and he couldn’t do else then fling an arm around her aswell. Her silent tears made him shudder along her. Was their love always damned to end up in such pain and misery? When she had cried herself to sleep Bray just sat there. Unable to sleep. Knowing that in some hours only, his heart would be splintered in more then million pieces when his love and life would leave him, for maybe never see him again.
“How could he break through? HOW?” KRONOS smashed one of the pc monitors in the secret hideout. CERBERUS watched him cooly “I told you it was wrong to sent him here…” “One word more and you’re done for you arrogant bastard! Well,well…in the end it only make sit more statisfying that way…we will sent a message to him. I am pretty sure he will come if I ask him to come to EAGLE MOUNTAIN…” “And then?” “Then we will sent him up like planned…his team is already here…their tubes are waiting…I only need to find a way without big battle. He should go quiet and leave his place for me. He will beg me too!” The maniac gleam in his eyes wahes away every intelligence CERBERUS had ever seen in him. It was creepy and scary.
The tribe watched the group of their loved ones leave. Slade was leading Ruby, Solaris, Trudy, Amber, Gel, Ellie, Jack, Lottie, Sebastian, KC, Claire and all the kids away to meet up with the GAIANS. They then would be leaded deeper into the woods by HAWK close to where they could air the plane whenever needed. Some privates and the younger cadetts were with them aswell, carrying resources, two of them being able to fly the plane. The kids were sobbing for having said goodbye to those who were either their parents or friends. Trudy had shown amazingly strength by rounding them up after saying goodbye and was now already walking through the rows comforting and spreading hope. Rhys watched her while she carried Lucy who waved sadly back at them all. Ebony watched feeling like she had never thought being able to. Her heart was beating painfully fast,seeing Angel being carried away by Lottie. Lizzie had put on a brave face and told them to hurry up the fight for she wanted not to stay in the boring woods too long. A little sob left her and Jay laid his arms comforting around her “We’ll see them again…we’ll have to believe that.” “I know…I only didn’t expect it to hurt so much…I have gotten quiet weak eh?” “Not weak darling…even stronger!” He mumbled pressing his lips against her temple. The most heartbreaking sight to them was Will who was looking back every few steps, like expecting his father running up to them and taking him back home. It had been a heartbreaking scene when they had explained at breakfast and Will had realized the moment his father asked him to leave was there. Just after the shock of the day before it had been way too much for the boy to grab. He had screamed and fought and refused to pack anything together. He had smashed the crayons his mother then had packed and stated he didn’t want to take anything of Bray with him. He had even pulled away his necklace and taken away all books his mother had tried to pack. He didn’t want anything that Bray had ever read to him. He couldn’t understand why now was the dangerous time. He had seen his father win about the man in the end and so his mind maybe would still be able to grab the danger, but his heart wasn’t. In the end Amber had really left all of his favorite things behind for at last Will had stopped crying and wore only a hard face then. When Bray had tried to talk to him, he had pushed him away and so they hadn’t even said goodbye. Amber had kissed him and cried in his arms, reassuing him Will would come around, but Bray had just told her that it maybe was better that way. He had reached her a little bag, in which he had secretely put all the crayons and books and also the necklace in the hope his son would one day appreciate it. There was also a letter captured “To my son” which he told Amber he should read when he was older and could do by himself. He then had vanished so that everyone elses goodbye wasn’t tarnished by the tension between Will and him. After the vanishing group were only tiny dots anymore, Rhys sighed and turned back to the mall. Slow he walked up all the way to the place he knew his best friend was sure in deep sadness and misery.
Bray was staring out in the far, tears just dried on his face “Hey…” softly Rhys stroke above his head “I am sorry it was that way…I never expected him to react that hard…” "I did…thats why I feared that day…he promised to go and thats what he did…he would never not do anything he promised, like me. But he will hate me for it. And…and …thats good in a way. Hate and anger can be way more productive in such situations. Sadness and tears keep you back from doing what you need to focus on …he will focus on Amber and the new baby…thats more important now. " “Bray…you don’t have to put a hard face in front of me okay? I just sent my family away just like you…don’t play the lord of the ice towards me…please…how should that make me feel?” He laid an arm around Brays shoulders “I know your hearts broken right now…” he whispered “Its hurts so much that you wish you could scream, but you don’t for you know its for the best. But that doesn’t make it easier…” Bray shrugged “Crying doesn’t help either…its nice you want to comfort me…but…nothing can comfort me. Nothing can ease that pain…so please just don’t talk about it. Talk to the others if you need to…but not to me…I need to safe myself right now…” Rhys watched him go and understood. Bray had moved back. Back to before coming here. Built up that walls around him. The distance. He had usually not had it with Rhys and the other higher ups, but seemingly he had now built them up towards all of them.
“That is very interesting…thats a part of his people there…hmmm…lets see where they will go…” KRONOS adjusted his cameras and followed the procession of people into the woods. There was the little boy and his mother. Both looking broken. “GUARDS!” He called and some of his muscular guards showed up “Take a troop and get those people…ALIVE…but you can hurt them it they fight…well…I don’t care for the lives of the adults too much…only the two pregnant women should really be alive…if the other older ones fight, kill them!” “Yes Master KRONOS…” the guards left and CERBERUS watched horrified how the highly trained troop sneaked up to the fleeing people.
When Bray finally entered his room, he stared a moment at the bed that seemed way to big and empty without Amber waiting for him. He had debated with himself to go into the hotel and stay there but the tribe had suffered and even when Amber had laid down leadership and he was just a ‘normal’ MALL RAT anymore, it had felt wrong to leave Salene alone with so many heartbroken people. He had worked on security with Lex, checked his privates, lead a long discussion with the city of whom many would now sent their kids the way to the ECOS too. It was enough place for those in the safe hide out aswell. All in all he felt prepared. His fighters were all excellent and even those of the city had been trained up well from Ebony over the last weeks. All they now could do was waiting and that sure would kill him. If he only knew where to turn he would collect his forces and walk up towards KRONOS. End it to the good or the worse. Only end it. It had been a wrong safety to all of them that KRONOS had taken so long to take a move. So right now it seemed too hard and too fast. They had started to believe there would never happen anything at all and now they were shocked and hurt. After another look on the bed he only took Ambers pillow and her blanket. He walked over to the childrens room that was way too empty too. He dropped himself into the hammock and put the blanket and pillow there. That way he would have Ambers scent with him and be in a place he felt close to his son. His eyes fell on the little table that stood beside the hammock and took up the book that rested there. He had just started to read out of it to him. Therefore he had forgotten to pack it in the bag. With a sigh he openend it and a folded paper felt out. He bent down and took it up, folding it open. There was drawn a red heart, captured with Wills still unsure letters. It was amazing still that he already was able to write some words, so neither Amber nor him cared for things like artful writing for him, they wanted him to discover himself and do only what he liked for a long while still. “Daddy I love you still” The heart looked carefully painted and so he knew it probably had been prepared by his son for anything else, or a present or maybe even to be at hand in a time like now. He had no real time to got into the situation. The packing had started when breakfast hadn’t been over for real. His little one must have grabbed his pencils then and written that words. He couldn’t write fast already and so he must have been stressed. His heart clenched painfully remembering how Amber had reprimanded Will for holding them off and not doing what he was told to do. And with that he had only wanted to leave him a message. His eyes burnt when he pressed the picture to himself. When he once thought the worst pain was to think Amber was dead, he could only laugh dryly about that now. That pain , EVERY pain he had ever endured couldn’t be compared to the pain he felt now. His little boy somewhere out there. Heartbroken but determined still to fullfill his promise to him. “We’ll see each other again Will…” he whispered looking out to the starful sky, hoping that his son looked at them too. “…I will do everything for it…I swear…” Then he cuddled together under Ambers blanket, his face snuggled into her pillow, the picture pressed to him. A little misery was allowed. Even to him, he realized. For the night he could let go of the cool strength he had forced to show today outwards to all others. Tonight he could and should cry.
“BRAY?” voices were ringing through the Mall, panicked, worried. The general slept cuddled into a ball in the hammock, a small smile showing that he was actually far away in a better reality. “HERE! HE IS HERE!” Alice yelled through the mall, rushing into the children room and shacking Bray not to softly awake “Whassamatter?” he asked groggily. He had only fallen asleep very late and the crying before hadn’t help to find a really restful sleep. Alice looked worried, realizing how pale he was. “I…Bray I am really sorry…but,but…” Noticing her panic he jumped off “Whats going on?TELL ME!” “Its Hawk…he is downstairs…they never arrived in the camp…” Understanding her panic now, Bray ran out and down. Alice sister was with the group and so of course she could feel the shock that was now also cursing through his veins “HAWK! WHAT HAPPENED?” Bray grabbed the shoulders of the GAIAN leader quiet strong and only his disciplined mind kept him from losing it completely and shook the other. “They never arrived Bray…when they weren’t there around the afternoon we searched for them. Thinking they might have lost step somewhere…I tried to reach Ambers device…nothing…we searched till the evening and then…I found this…” He held out Ambers engagement ring. “I am sorry Bray…I don’t know …there was no one…I mean they were quiet a big group…Slades a fighter and Ram and Jack and Ellie aren’t unable to fight. Trudy and Amber can fight too, even when pregnant…Solaris sure isn’t all unable herself too…so…I should have called you directly but I only thought Amber and Trudy might show the others some things or so…make it easier for the kids to come here or whatever…or that they maybe had taken rest a while…but Amber would never just ‘lose’ that ring…” Bray sat down on the stairs, shacking his head “No she wouldn’t. But…she would give me a sign with it…where was the ring?” “A…a sign?” “When I got kidnapped…I tore my necklace away, letting her ring fall into the gras with the hope one might find it. And look around and find her and our child then…I couldn’t do else…so…she maybe…left the ring…to give me a slight area…where did you find it?” “On that rock…” “That on the parting to EAGLE MOUNTAIN?” “Hmmm…” “Back the days of the CHOOSEN time Amber told me she went to that rock to sit there sometimes and stared high at the dome, remembering our last kiss up there, remembering me…” “So that rock holds kind of a meaning to you?” Rhys shouted “That its sure a sign of her…they are on that godforsaken hill…come…come up you get!” Rhys pulled him high. But Hawk stepped in between “If thats the case we need a plan…just running there…might be suicid and doesn’t help anyone…and for now…look at Bray…he can’t fight a fluffy pillow that way!” Rhys looked for real at his friend, taking in the paleness, the dark circles under the eyes and his worry for Bray added up to the worry for Trudy and his girls. “Fuck…boy you look like you have partied hard at last two weeks non stop…” “Hmmm…if only…” Bray whispered hoarsly standing up. “I only need a shower and some coffeee…for infusion if possible?” Shacking his head Rhys looked at the others “So…thats business now…breakfast in half an hour…alarm ACHILL and his team. Get the generals here…I take care that Bray looks living at last then…”
“Whats going on here?” Trudy whispered, staring at the privates of EAGLE MOUNTAIN who looked like Zombies “I fear he is controlling them…” “But…what are we doing here? Why did he bring us here?” “KEEP QUIET!” A guard yelled at them and they kept their mouths shut. Amber ambraced Will tighter, who leant his head softly onto her belly. “Mommy…” “Shhh…it will be okay again. Daddy will find us. We only have to be careful now…” “I said ‘KEEP QUIET!’” Tjhe guard roared and oulled Amber high on her hair. Trudy stood up outraged “Let her go you bastard…she is pregnant! She has done nothing! Talking to her boy sure won’t kill your peace!” The guard advanced his whip in Trudys direction and she shrieked together in fear. But Slade had jumped up and caught the hit with his own arm “What for a sad figure are you? Hitting a pregnant girl?” He moaned when another hit him down “Slade!” Ruby kneeled down to him, their son pressed close to her “I am okay…don’t worry…” When the guard stepped up again Amber stepped in between “You let off all of them!” “Says who?” “ME!” “And I should listen to you?!” “Yes you should for I am general ZEUS wife and that boy is his son! I am pretty sure you weren’t ordered to hurt us in any way!” “Thats right…” a cold voice drawled towards them and a man with a scarred face stepped up to them. He hit the guard hard “I told you actually to act with repect towards them didn’t I? Where are your manners? There are women and children…and some very important women at that!” He grabbed Ambers hand and kissed it. “I am sure imressed by your attitude…you’ll make a good first lady after all…” “If you’re speaking about being YOUR first lady you must be insane…I am Brays wife…this are HIS children.” She touched her belly and her sons head “We are his family and sure won’t betray him to you!” “Awww…how heartwarming…pure loyalism! Wonderful. Exactly what I need…but I can be Bray to you…I have his face…” he changed his face into Brays “But I could also give any other nice face you want…imagine…your man would always look after your newest desire…” He flipped his face through many good looking faces and Amber watched dizzled. It was scary, but sure an impressive technic at all. “Why are you doing this? You’re so smart…seemingly at last. You could have conquered the world without that charade…” “Ah well…its not the time to speak about me now…we should give your lover a message or? Before he starts collecting all forces and spoils my plan for real…” Her held out a device “If you think I might help you to get Bray here you’re on the wrong track!” She closed her lips tightly. “Awwww…you’ve got fire…” he breathed, coming closer to her face “I sure will enjoy to see that fire in your eyes burn up, when I finally have my go on you…but right now…there is sadly no time for that…so…” he grabbed Will hard and pressed the button of his device “KRONOS calling ZEUS…”
Nibbling on a bread, unable to eat for real Bray sat among the discussing people in the cafe. That just couldn’t happen. His family missing just when he himself had sent them away thinking they would be safer that way. He felt Rhys look at him “I know. I know. Its my fault okay? I’ve sent them away…okay…you can kill me or whatever when…when…” Rhys hugged him “You idiot! You really think I think that way? I was sure that was the best too…we all were. If I would look like you do right now, you would stare at me too…I can’t afford that you get ill now!” “But…no…Rhys…really…” when his device beeped he got hold of it in one move, somehow changing into the general again "ZEUS speaking. Whats the matter? Did you find anything? " “Oha…already on tenderhooks there…” Bray stared at the device when KRONOS voice dropped oily out of it “WHERE IS MY FAMILY? WHAT DID YOU DO TO MY PEOPLE? THEY’VE GOT NOTHING TO DO WITH IT…LET THEM GO!” “Sure…” "Taken aback about the others easiness Bray stared at the device in his hand “What?” “I said ‘sure’, they can go as soon as you’re here…most of them anyway…honestly I don’t need that little family with their baby boy or that girl that thinks she is a doctor…and sure not that coughing girlie…” Tara bite her lips and Bray understood her too good “Claire has cystic fibrosis…I ask you not to make breathing too hard for her and let her drink enough…” “Sure…like said I am not interested in them anyway…its your family I needed…” “How can I be sure they are with you and well?” They heard struggling and then a soft cry “Daddy…” “WILL! Will its alright…I am coming…” they heard another struggle “He bit me again…he sure is a little warrior…impressive. But he has a soft heart like you. I just have to tell him I will hurt his mommy and the other brat in her and he gets all nice. Well…you will come here. But don’t be stupid and let me believe you come alone. Sure take your privates and people with you…I am not alone here aswell…” Confused Bray looked at the others “Hurry…tomorrow at dawn…here is a lot to be done…” the connection ended and Lex spoke out what everyone thought “WHAT THE FUCK?”
Nonetheless Bray entered the dome by himself. The others were waiting a little away. He was still scared that there was a weapon or bomb here and it just wasn’t right to risk all lifes at once. They had called together as much people as possible. The city was saved by the tribe leaders and tribes. And some privates that they had left back. He had informed the council but of course on such short notice there would be no other able to help even if tribes like the MUSES or ASCLEPIOS had own parts ot troops who sure could have helped. The privates of EAGLE MOUNTAIN didn’t even react to him, they stepped around, going their chores, looking like empty shells. “Ah…there you are…” Bray looked around having just entered the old control room. KRONOS was sitting lazily on a chair “We were waiting yearningly…or Amber? Will?” “Daddy!” Brays heart did a flip seeing them well at last. His eyes drifted along “Where are the others?” “Oh those of no need are outside…” Bray saw them standing in a panel, showed on a monitor “They will be safe there…they will join those followers you brought…I only kept your family and of course those that mean something to POSEIDON, whats easy then for its also your family or?” He saw Trudy, Brady and Lucy on the other side of KRONOS. He tried to look reassuring. “What are you doing here? Whats your plan? Why did you do all this to me? It just makes no sense at all…” “Oh you will see now…you remember that door for sure?” KRONOS pointed to an other monitor and Bray swallowed realizing that the mysterious door stood ajar “You could open it?” “I am the only person living who could…” "But…that message… " “What?” “I open to eternal light and endless darkness…I hold your future or your present. There can only be one of you on earth at once or the world might burn!” KRONOS grinned “That was one of my more poetical ideas. I had to make sure you would respect the place and restore EAGLE MOUNTAIN. Clean it of debris after having banned the seeminlgy danger…and would be more open to the last programming, when I would start to train you up for your mission…” “But the nuclear bomb…” “Was a real one, yes. But It would have never donated. It was little trick of mine…” "ARE YOU ABSOLUTE INSANE? The nights I couldn’t sleep…for…for…a show that amused you? " “Nanana…wasn’t it cool to be the hero? I have given you so many chances to raise to a hero the last years…I let you operate free and watched with grinded teeth when you did again something foolish like risking your life for your high ranks…but I accepted that was just you and that I needed you to be you. To win peoples hearts and trust. Something that always has been a mistery to me. When I now take over your place I can slowly work on changing …people will think that the fight against the evil TITAN has hardenend you up a bit…and with time I will be able to plant control in all those who are dangerous to me to control them. Luckily POSEIDON has given me even more control about him for loving that woman here. Imagine my shock when I tried to control little Lucy and had to realize my chip in her has been destroyed…Only Ambers pleading stopped me to kill Ram and Jack for that impertinence…” Bray swallowed when KRONOS leant over to her and grabbed her chin “She will do me some good for that later, right honey?” Amber didn’t look in his eyes and he grinned “I bet anything she is entertaining in bed or? You must have fucked around a while already again for seeing how far pregnant she is. I guess she is so good that that pushed you up even more to fool me that long…” Bray clinched his hands to fist, how much he longed to just beat that guy into an oozing bloddy pulp. “You were talking about the door…” he remembered him, grinding his teeth “Oh yes…the door held the entrance to that…” he pressed a button on the paneöl and the white dome or more the rest of it, openend up to two sides. Under a loud noise a platform went into motion. Disbelieve filled Bray.
Outside the others googled confused “Fuck…you know what that means?” Lex whispered confused , when all looked at him he joked feebly “I owe Ram a bottle of the finest whiskey I can find…” Together they stared at the gigantic space rocket that was slowly descending into the air from under EAGLE MOUNTAIN.
“You will see the enternal darkness of the space and the enternal light of the stars…this is your future and my past and present. There can only one ZEUS here and one there…one god…you will journey to ELISION while I will be god on earth…” Bray gaped at him. His eyes met Ambers, hers full of wonder and fear. His eyes fell on Will who stared amazed on the rocket and he looked so cute even when there was happening something that held the biggest danger to Bray himself, that Bray wished he could simply take him up in his arms and watch and awe at the rocket. As little boy he had dreamed to witness a start one day. Or maybe be an astronaunt. He had had the same dreams like many little adventures boys had had. “Thats impressive or little man?” KRONOS asked in a voice that tried to sound warm, but he just seemed cold as ice. Will looked up shyly and nodded a little “That will be an adventure for your father…to fly away in that…” “NO! Daddy not go away!” With a feat of surprising strength Will was able to free himself from KRONOS grib and tore off towards Bray who felt down in his knees and embraced him safely “Oh my little hero…you better shouldn’t have done that!” he sighed but hugged him nonetheless, feeling alive for real the first time since hours.