Resist

RESIST is the sequel to the brilliant and compelling BREATHE. Sarah Crossan is the Carnegie short-listed author of THE WEIGHT OF WATER.
In a world in which the human race is adapting to survive with little air, the stakes are high. Resistance to the Pod Leadership has come apart. The Grove has been destroyed but so has the Pod Minister. Quinn, Bea and Alina separately must embark on a perilous journey across the planet’s dead landscape in search of the rumoured resistance base Sequoia.

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4. QUINN

While Bea and Jazz get some kip, I scout the station for drifters, climbing the escalator to the upper concourse – a glass atrium bursting with light. The sky is this amazingly bright blue, and if you didn’t know any better you’d think it was a summer morning.

At the end of the concourse, where the light is brightest, is a jumble of discarded solar respirators. Hell, even the drifters have legged it.

I stoop over one of the solar respirators, a metal box that looks like a rusty mini-fridge, and turn it on. It sputters to life, then hums loudly. I pull my face mask from my nose and mouth to test the one attached to the respirator. The air coming from it is humid, but I can breathe all right. A tightness I didn’t even know I had in my chest relaxes; at least we aren’t going to suffocate any time soon. With Bea I’ve tried to be more positive than I feel, but that’s only because she needs me to be strong. She’s lost way more than I have, and she hasn’t given up. Not completely anyway.

I refit my face mask and pull my father’s long coat more tightly around me.

Maybe he thought that saving my life made him a model father or something, but it doesn’t. Anyone would have done the same, or more. And if he could see me now he’d know that sending me into The Outlands to fend for myself wasn’t far from a death sentence anyway.

Who am I fooling? Of course he knew that.

But at least I can walk, which is more than I can say about Jazz, and if we don’t do something soon we’ll have to watch her die because there’s no way we can treat her leg ourselves. If only we’d managed to make it to Sequoia unharmed.

I slump on the floor and nudge a solar respirator with my foot. Maybe I should go there alone and bring back help. Bea could take care of Jazz in the meantime. They have air and water. And this station is as good as it gets for shelter out here.

It’s probably the worst idea I’ve ever had, but when I hear Jazz call out I figure I don’t have any other option.

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