Lucid

~The Sequel to 'Little British Girl~
- Decide which side your on -
Three and a half month after Luci kidnapped her birth father, Xander Moore, Elia and her friends are on the run. Both north and south are engulfed in complete and utter chaos, and the resistance and the rebellium are gaining power through an alliance. Both sides want them out of the way, and they have nowhere to be, nowhere where they belong. The four friends must choose a side, the alliance, or the government, a decision that will forever haunt them all.
Nothing is certain, nothing is safe, nothing is lucid.

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16. Chapter 16

Daniel and I sit huddled together, curled up on the sofa, staring blankly out the window, our minds empty. I have the report in my hand, rolled up, my fist clutches it fiercely, unable to be gentle. The rest of my body is limp and weak, worn out- I can still taste the sick in my mouth. My head rests against Daniel’s chest so that I can hear his heartbeat, duh dum, duh dum, duh dum...thumping along endlessly, the noise is both soothing and unsettling. My breathing is irregular, every other breath is cut short as shock hits me again and again, and the air I exhale feels cold against my lips.

I want to sleep, my mind is heavy, and I am more than exhausted...but I can’t. Every time I shut my eyes I see gunfire, and bodies scattered across the floor. Eight child corpses surround me and I and pulled to the floor by a force stronger than gravity, crying out on my knees, tears burning my cheeks. It’s a haunting nightmare, one I can’t escape.

Did Xander dream as I do?

Did guilt play on his mind?

Did he even care?

When I met him in that room not so long ago, despite everything I knew about him, despite everything he’d done, I still looked up and saw a person. A person with emotions. Happiness, ambition, creativity, sadness, grief, greed, anger, hope, fear...but now, now I can’t even imagine him as a human being. How could he allow such a thing to happen? How can he even live with himself?

I heave myself off of Daniel and slowly walk over to the kitchen, distracting myself by washing up the dirty dishes, handling each delicate plate with gentle care, my eyes wearily watching the sponge rub against the dirty surfaces.

“Your mother used to clean when she was upset too.” My father wandered into the kitchen, smiling, “The morning I went back to the bar to see her she was frantically cleaning the surface of the drinks bar, scrubbing away…”

“She had five rules about cleaning,” I tell him, “Rule three was ‘never work alone’, she liked that one a lot, especially when I wasn’t busy at home.”

“I bet she did…” He chuckles, trailing off, “Well, in light of that, let me give you a hand.” He comes over to stand to my right, drying up my dripping wet dishes. “Was she happy? Your mother that is, did she-well...did she live a good life?”

“She never seemed sad, I suppose she must have been, from time to time. But she was always good at hiding it- she was always good at hiding everything...the fact that I was half-american, the plot to kidnap me and send me her, her forbidden romance with you- sometimes I feel like I never really knew her.” I try to explain, unable to find the right words.

“Did she, um, did she talk about me at all? About us?” I sigh, hearing her words in my ears once more.

“She called you her blind spot.” I reveal, feeling my throat swell up as I remember her conversations with me.

Your father was my blind spot. We all have at least one. He was the person who I’d lose all my morals for, how I’d ignore all my common sense for, he was the one person I’d forgive time and time again. No matter what he did, I forgave him. That was until he left us...I still haven’t forgiven him for that.

“She said she’d always forgive you, no matter what you did, and that the only thing she couldn’t forgive was...was y-you l-leaving.” I begin to sob, unable to control myself for any longer. I feel his arm wrap around me, pulling me in closer. “He k-killed her,” I cry, “He went to-to the s-south and, and he...he…”

“It okay,” he tries to comfort me, “Don’t waste your tears on Xander, he’s not worth it. Xander Moore is a killer, a stone cold killer. Nothing more, nothing less.”

“He killed my mum, and he killed those civilians whilst trying to kill Luci, and now Luci wants to kill him and-and for some reason w-we’re t-trying t-to stop her...why on earth are we trying to do that?” I cry out, my sadness turning to anger.

“Because you’re good people, and like it or not Luci is your friend, and if she kills Xander she’s just as bad as he is, and you don’t want that for her, you want to redeem her, to help her, to be there for her despite everything she’s done.” He speaks into my ear, soothing me. I feel my anger calm down inside me as I take some deep breaths, regaining control of my emotions.

“Max was right…” I murmur, “We can’t let the alliance put Luci in danger,we can’t let them hurt her. If we do, then we’re just like Xander, sitting back as people attempt to take her down, not caring who gets hurt in the crossfire.” I break apart from my father’s hold, knowing what I have to do, “All along I just thought Max was a love-sick idiot who didn’t want his crazy ex-girlfriend getting hurt even though she’d hurt him, but it’s so much more than that...we have to help her, because we’re not like her, or Xander, we’re friends, we’re allies.” He smiles at me, the way a proud father smiles at his daughter. “I have to go find Max.” I tell him, rushing off upstairs. “Max? Max? Max where are you?” I call out, listening carefully for a reply. I knock twice on his bedroom door, but when no reply comes i just barge in anyway, to find it completely empty.

I am about to leave, when I notice a crumpled piece of paper on his bedsheets. When I get closer I realise it’s a note.

Dear Elia, Annabeth, Daniel, and Mr Ryans.

I am sorry, I truly am, I know how much this will hurt you, but I can’t bear this pain anymore.

My own mother despises me, she looks at me as if I am a piece of garbage on the sidewalk. When I turned to her for help in the most darkest of hours she turned me away with ease, and it broke my heart. I know now that my relationship with Beverly Hills is in shreds, she is no longer my mom.

As for Luci, well, there’s a tricky one. I love Luci, even now, despite all that she’s done. I wish I didn’t feel like this, but none of us can help the way we feel. A part of me still deliriously believes that Luci might love me too, she just hides it really well, deep, deep down, but I can’t wait around to see if this is true. Luci betrayed me, she used me, and the crazy part is I forgive her...Luci’s broken me beyond repair.

I wish you all the best of luck in the future, you’ll need it. Just do one thing for me, don’t ever turn to the alliance, please, for me, stay pure.

It brings me great sadness, but also great relief, to write that I intend to end my life. This isn’t your fault. It’s because of Beverley...and Luci.

From your friend and ally, in life and death,

Max.

PS: There’s something you don’t know about the mission I went on with Timmy all those years ago, if you get time, look into it, you might just be surprised.

I don’t even think, I just run, shoving the note in my pocket and darting out of the door.

I have to find him.

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