Skyborn

"Skyborn, sweet Skyborn Here be lain in this human form Skyborn, you shall sing no more"

The Skyborn are creatures who fly through space, living among the above. When girl, a Skyborn girl, is pushed through a wormhole towards planet earth a tale of adventure is sure to unfold. With a tangle of memories and nightmares, revenge and belonging can she find out where she belongs

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18. Skyblue - Chapter Seventeen

We kept watch. That’s all we did. We sat with binoculars, looking out on the city beneath us. We waited and looked. We tried to see but just saw everybody who wasn’t Hinter. It was my watch, and it was the early hours watch, from eleven Pm to five Am, again. I offered to do it because I wanted to avoid sleeping. The nightmare’s continued and got more frequent.

When I looked down upon the streets there were fewer people than in the daytime. This’ll be easy I told myself. In fact, it was anything but. Whoever I saw, wherever I looked. There was Hinter. She was everyone. I couldn’t use the binoculars. They let me see too much, I would just look for the qualities she had; dark hair, olive skin. I couldn’t look for her wings; that would be too easy. She had worn a dark cloak among the Liakorth but I did not know how much different she’d look as a human.

At just after five in the morning Ezra came and saved me from being alone. He didn’t say anything. He just came and sat next to me. I passed him the binoculars. A sigh escaped from my mouth. I don’t want to go to bed. I don’t want to sleep.

“Everywhere I look, I see her,” I whispered. Ezra looked out of the window.

“Same,” he half smiled.

“Glad it’s not just me,” I said. He didn’t look at me, just kept staring out of the window.

“How does Aris know she’s after us?” He asked, though it wasn’t really aimed at me.

“You’ll have to ask her.” I said. He looked down at the binoculars, at his fumbling hands.

“I just don’t understand,” He sighed, “Why is she after you?”

I sighed at the thought of my fragmented memory.

“I understand you don’t like talking about it, but what is she taking revenge for?”

“As I said, I was here on earth, and... It was Hinter who flew down to earth and brought me back up, I nearly died on the ascent to the break,” I said coldly, “She was punished for abandoning her post to find me on earth,”

“Time is different here than among the Liakorth, how long did she take to find you?”

“Nineteen earth days,”

“That’s nearly three Sky years,” Ezra calculated.

“Wait, so how long have you been on earth?”

“Six months and a few weeks,”

“Hmm, you guys came here when I was three earth years old, or 72 Sky years, that makes me sixteen earth years old,”

“And me 22”

“How old would we be in Sky years?”

“You’re 384 Sky years old Kaliska,” He laughed.

“Which makes you 528 Ezra,” I smiled back.

“And I’m 480,” Aris walked up behind us silently.

“Hi Aris,” I smiled.

“Not mush Hinter watching going on here,” She ruffled Ezra’s shaggy hair.

“Don’t touch the hair girl!” He giggled.

“Shush, you’ll wake everyone up!” I whispered, smiling.

If Aris is 480 Sky years old, then that makes her 20 earth years old. Ezra, Aris and I had worked out that there is twenty four Sky years in an earth year, when we were all up among the Liakorth, I remember Ezra better than any of the others, he stayed with us most, I suppose. He came back with Aris after every visit to earth and I remember most of our conversations. Even though I didn’t talk much, because I was still little. Ezra and Aris used to tell me everything they knew.

“I remember when you were little,” Ezra whispered.

“And we used to stroke your hair ‘til you began to sleep,” Aris stroked my hair now, and I remembered how tired I am.

“No!” Ezra exclaimed, he pulled the binoculars away from his face and pointed, “There!” my eyes followed to where his finger pointed and then to the street below. The street lamps were going out as the street was filled with natural light.

A tall woman with straight black hair and a long sleeved red velvety dress was crossing the road over to the building we sat in.

“WAKE UP!” Ezra shouted into Howell’s room, and Aris rapped on Cora and Paisley’s door.

I just stood there, watching as the dark figure vanished into the doorway 13 stories below us.

Within seconds we had what we needed packed in backpacks and satchels, Ezra wore dark glasses to cover his alarming eyes. Aris gave me a pair and she put a pair on too. We had food, maps, drink, clothes, hats and sunglasses al packed up.

“Fire escape?” Aris looked at Ezra.

“Fire escape,” Ezra nodded.

Aris locked the apartment behind us and put the key in her pocket.

“Run,” she gestured the hallway that lead to double doors with a green sign above it. We ran towards it and the doors were pushed open before Aris and I got there, Ezra and Howell were ahead of us, followed by Lystra and Paisley, we were closely following.

There were stairs going down in a square spiral, we clattered down as fast as we could without tripping.

“She will probably take the lift, but just in case we’ll climb out onto the fire escape on floor ten,” Ari shouted.

We climbed onto the metal balcony on floor ten, out of the grey stairwell. Aris closed the window behind us, and we slowly made our way down the ladders into the back alley.

Once we jumped down we stopped to catch our breath.

“Where do we go now?” Lystra said between inhaling and exhaling.

“The truck,” Aris said, “On we march!” She led us down a maze of alleys o the car park.

We piled into the truck, Ezra called ‘shot-gun’, he and Aris climbed in the front, and the Paisley, Howell and Lystra sat in the back, I jumped into the boot, along with our belongings.

Everything seemed darker in my sunglasses, and I felt like I was permanently engulfed in shadow. I took them off and put them in my backpack.

We escaped.

“Go!” Ezra said to Aris.

“Buckle up guys!” Howell said. I hung onto the back of Cora’s chair.

“Okay?” Cora whispered to me.

I nodded.

Aris pulled out of the car park and out into the city streets.

“Where are we going?” Asked Lystra.

“Away from here!” Aris half shouted half sighed.

We headed in the direction Hinter had come. We took the road back; retracing our journey from before, racing through the early birds. It would take an hour or so to escape the edge of the city. Nobody was following us. I kept checking. Sitting against the back of Cora’s chair, I watched the world outside be left behind. The inside of the truck remained silent, all for the radio that was quietly playing.

I turned to look out the front window, to see what was up ahead of us. Cora felt me move, and said,”Get some sleep if you want, there’s a blanket in my satchel,” she smiled.

I pulled the blanket free of the green bag and lay it over me as I leant on my bag as a pillow. I closed my eyes.

I did not sleep, but I lay there on the floor of the boot, thinking about everything, with my eyes closed, just listening and thinking.

Thinking and listening.

When I did sit up, we had stopped, ahead of us were traffic lights shining red, behind us, stood a building I recognised, somehow. It was grand with towering columns holding up the overlapping roof. The library! We must be close to Skyline!

“Aris!” I said.

“Yup,” She replied.

“Turn right,” I said.

“But-“

“I need to say goodbye.”

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