Chapter Four

A sharp, rancid smell penetrates Diana's unconsiousness. She groans slightly and reaches up to push the source away. When the brilliant green eyes open, they look into cold, icey blue ones. She yelps slightly and sits up, moving away from the silver haired man.

"Do not worry, Ms. Manashevitz. We will not hurt y..." He's interrupted by a ball of starlight to his chest, throwing him off of the gargoil adorned rooftop. One of what she thought was one of the stone guardians, crouched over Jae's prone form, reviels itself to be the woman she knows as HLM. She leaps off after the silver haired man, ebon wings snapping open to catch the winds. Once she catches him, they dissapear into the night.

Diana looks up when Neph kneels by her to brush her hair from the back of her neck, wincing when he sees the purpled flesh. He helps her sit up.

"Do you think you can handle a teleport?"

Diana nods. He puts a hand on her shoulder just before teleporting them back to the mansion and reinforcing the shields.

 

Ken sits pensively in 309's quarters, watching her sleep as he ignores the pain of his bandaged chest. Ever since their individual interrogations and punishments, his friend has been inexplicably ill. She refuses to tell him what happened, which is also odd. Usually, she'd confide in him her feelings and everything that happened to her. This time, all she did was vomit in the bathroom before sobbing and clinging to him until she fell asleep.

What did they do to her? Is it because of the new plan? This will be the first time we're apart for a long period of time, but we'll still be in contact...

He sighs softly as he leans over to kiss her sleeping brow. She stirs, and her eyes flash open. Those eyes look desperately at him.

"Ken," she whispers, "don't leave me alone tonight..."

He pauses, gazing down at her with concern. "Are you sure?"

She nods, her eyes taking on a wide, innocent look. "You're leaving tomorrow," she whispers, holding her arms out to him. "I want to spend this last night with you..."

He sits on the bed next to her. "You're so sick, though..."

"I know." She tugs him down next to her and turns on her side to gaze at him sadly. "But I can put that aside. Just to spend this last night together...not sex...neither of us are up to that tonight...just...companionship..."

Lightly, he pulls her close, both of them very careful of his wounds. She seems strangely warm in his arms.

She can't be sick enough to have a fever...her healing factor...

"309...?"

"Yeah, Ken?"

"Can you tell me what happened now...?"

She takes a deep breath and closes her eys. "...to be honest...I'm really not sure..."

He strokes her wings lightly as he looks into her eyes. "What do you mean?"

She swallows a little. "All I know is that they knocked me out, and when I came to, they were pumping some kind of drug into me...then they told me you're going...now I feel sicker than I ever have in my entire life..."

"Oh...my friend..." He gently hugs her close, feeling afraid for her and even more reluctance to leave.

"Yeah," she whispers, "I'm scared, too..."

He leans in close to whisper into her ear. "We'll figure a way out to get you away from here..."

She nods a little, trembling. "I know...just...be careful, ok...?"

He nods, holding her close again as the tears come.

 

The soil is cool and soft under her hands as she pats it into place around the young plant. The sun's rays bathe her with their warmth, serving as a soothing destraction from the light pull the sword exerts on her. A shadow falls over her. She turns to see Nephrite, haloed with sunlight.

"Nephrite...? What's up?"

She stands, brushing her hands off on her jeans.

The man looks confused and sad, but as if he wants to talk. "Do you have time to accompany me on a walk, Diana?"

"Sure," she answers. They begin their walk through the garden pathways.

"Do you think they hurt Naru?"

She blinks a little and arches a brow. "No, but...I can't be sure. Couldn't the stars answere you better?"

He shakes his head. "They were somehow blocked." He sighs softly. "I'm very worried, Diana..."

She pauses. "I think we all are. I can't help wondering, though, if those two really want to be where they are..."

"Why's that?"

She takes a moment to try to map her words in her head. Finding this futile, she finally shrugs a little. "I don't know...women's intuition? I guess...look at how they treated Jae and I when they took us...they didn't really hurt us...and the woman looked for all the world like she was watching over Jae...plus...I think the man wanted to talk...not fight."

His brows raise. "You're saying they might really be on our side?"

She nods. "Hai..."

"If that's true, why haven't they returned Naru yet?"

"I don't kn..."

She blinks in suprise when he suddennly teleports away from her, eyes sparkling with anger.

Was it something I said...?

Her question's answered when she hears angry voices coming from the front of the house. Without hesitation, she bolts into the mansion.

 

He holds his ribs with his left hand as he reaches up with his right to ring the bell. They'd beaten him up pretty good. His lip's split and blood trickles down his chin, into his shirt. When the door flies open, he stumbles back, barely avoiding a fall.

"Where's my Naru?!" The enraged Nephrite slams his fist into Ken's jaw, sending the taller man tumbling to the ground.

"Ugh!" He shakes his head dazedly, trying to summon words to his mouth  He grunts as the auburn haired man hauls him to his feet by his shirt.

"Where is she?!?" Cobalt eyes glow as he shakes him.

"She...she's at an outpost...she's alright..."

Nephrite growls and draws a fist back. Just as he's about to slam it into Ken's face again, he looks back, finding Diana holding it back. "Let me go, Diana, this bastard has this coming!"

"Put him down, Nephrite." The young woman looks from Neph to Ken.

"Why should I?" He growls, but still lowers his fist.

"Look at the man! He's barely consiouse. You seriously think he can tell us exactly where Naru is in that state?"

Nephrite sighs harshly and drops the silver-haired man to the ground before turning and stalking back into the mansion.

Diana watches him go with a headshake before kneeling by the other man heaped, gasping, on the ground. "Alright," she murmers, locking gazes with him as Jae and Zoi join them. "What the hell happened to bring you here?"

Light eyes flicker around, tanned complexion turned slightly waxy. "I...I can't tell you out here...they might be watching..."

She blinks at his whispered reply and exchanges looks with the other two men. "Eh...well...hai...?"

Jae shrugs and grabs one of Ken's arms while Zoi grabs the other, Diana getting the door for them.

 

"...and now I'm here," Ken finishes recapping his story two hours later, light eyes on the mug of tea in his hands, before looking desperately into the watchful eyes of his audience. "You have to believe me...309 really needs to get out of there. She...she was so sick...upset...when I left. We both need a different life, and feel horrible for taking Naru away. This is the only way we could think of." With a soft sigh, his eyes fall back to his mug.

Zoisite finally breaks the pregnant silence. "I believe him."

Nephrite glares at the smaller man. "You would." He turns his glare to Ken. "Why should we? This could just be part of some plan to get us..."

Diana looks between Ken's wide eyed stare and Nephrite. "I believe him, too. You can't fake those emotions."

Neph eyes her. "Leave it to a woman to come up with that load of bull."

The young woman narrows her eyes and calmly walks over to where he stands. That is the only warning of her fist ramming into Nephrite's jaw. He stumbles back against the wall, holding his jaw, eyes wide with shock.

"Get your head out of your ASS, Nephrite!" She growls into the suprised silence, stepping right up against the big man's chest, pinning him there with her glare, flexing and unflexing her hand.

"But..."

"But NOTHING!" Green eyes flash up into cobalt. "We all want Naru back! I have a feeling this is the way to DO that! YOU'RE just being too DENSE to realize that! Now, I'm going to leave and calm down before I end up hitting you upside your FOOL HEAD with that LAMP over there!"

The four men all stare in shock as she stalks from the room.

 

Green on black eyes watch the girl contained in the holding cell. A strong hand rests on a muscular belly as the dark brows furrow. Her period is late; the first time that's ever happened. When she informed the scientists, she was shocked to learn she's pregnant. They said it was more than one, but wouldn't tell her exactly how many. Apparently, this had been planned, her birth control pills were replaced with fertility drugs without her knowlege.

It's just another experiment to them...my child...children...are gonna be stuck in this godforsaken life...

The girl in the cell rises to her feet to pace again.

We have to get out of here now more than ever.

She folds her ebon and crimson wings against her back, heart aching as the girl sits on her cot, bowing her head to cry again. The winged woman longs to do the same, but a lifetime of dicipline forces her to swallow her tears and smooth emotion from her visage.

I'm so sorry, Naru...we'll get out of here...I just wish you could know you do not weep alone...

Chapter Three
Chapter Five
Capture and Escape Index