Up There so High

What do you get when you have a space fanatic, a runaway princess and a bunch of miscreants? Well, you get the three E's; Explosions, Expletives and Enemies.
You may not laugh along with this story but you may sing (because the main space man is very much fond of that).

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55. The Aftermath

 

~The Aftermath~

~Everett~

 

He emerged back into the chaotic organisation of his room. It was startling to be back on Earth, to be around what was familiar and what was now unfamiliar since his journey through the cosmos.

Earth was the state of sangfroid; the art of being composed during times of trouble. The planet itself was one of the definitions of home and it would take some time for Everett to get used to it again.

The first thing he did was shrug out of the suit and stumble to his bathroom, throwing up Zeldian food into the toilet bowl.

He leaned against the seat as he flushed it, sitting in Zeldian underclothes. He felt out of place, foreign and stretched and tired. Everett brushed his teeth like a zombie and changed into sweatpants, his chest bare to feel the English breeze on his skin.

How long had he been gone? Would Morton be back and be worried about his missing status?

He gazed at himself in the mirror, a moustache on his upper lip showed the time lapse, his hair was darker and more unruly, flopping forwards onto his forehead whereas before his journey it had been neat and cropped at the sides. He was bruised, his left eye framed in purple blotches and threatening to swell, his chin was scraped, he had ash on his forehead, his arms were burnt and cut, and there was a laceration across his ribs.

He looked like a mess, and one arm was poised against the mirror as he tried to patch himself up, swearing when the antibiotic cream hit his wounds. A white bandage encased his chest, and he thought acutely that maybe he should get a tattoo to commemorate his adventure.

With NASA he hadn’t had the chance to mark his victory, too busy planning his revenge on Nick Thornby in prison, which he hadn’t completed. Yes, he had shown him wrong, he was capable of greater things than he but how would he prove that?

He didn't feel better now that he had proven it to himself. He just felt wiped out, cleared out by a rusty spoon and he took a deep breath as he opened his bedroom door.

The apartment looked the same, but the main difference was the three people sat on his sofa. Morton, Abby, and Matthew sat there, game console controllers made slack when their heads turned his way.

Morton dropped his controller and made his way towards him, “What the hell happened to you?” He asked as he stumbled into a hug, Everett letting out a hiss as he pressed onto his wounds. “You’ve been gone for weeks.”

“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.” Everett murmured into his friend's shoulder. If there was one thing that he had missed while on Zeld it was his friends, the people who knew him better than any Zeldian ever could.

“Why don’t you try us?” Matthew uttered as he smiled and he and Abby made their way to join the hug.

 

~Skylar~

 

There were chains around her wrists, two-thirds of her team by her side, and her disapproving parents in front of her. She was stood in the throne room and she hated it. What had she done wrong?

The Pantheon felt familiar and foreign to her all at once, since her family wasn’t bonded to it anymore. Her chest felt tight and cold from where the Pantheon used to be and her mother probably felt it to a harsher degree. Her mother was undoubtedly angry about that and Skylar didn’t know what they were going to do.

Her mother’s expression was twisted into something Skylar didn’t recognise.

“Do you even know what you have done?” Maeve asked from her throne, her father standing beside her with an arm on her shoulder.

“Saved the planet,” Fitz murmured and the guard next to him jabbed an electrical bolt in between his ribs, enough charge to make his knees falter.

Reese looked worried beside him, wanting desperately to check if he was okay but she couldn’t with the thick gold chains around her.

“Pantheon Endangerment is not something to be taken lightly.”

“You’re only saying that because you’re not Royalty anymore.” Reese continued and a jab was delivered to her as well, her knees buckling to meet with the tiles.

Skylar didn’t say anything. She knew that being Queen was something her mother had always wished for, and she had defended her rule with an ironclad fist. That meant not telling the public that the Queen was unbonded to the Pantheon and only the people in the throne room knew the truth.

“You endangered the Pantheon, not knowing that it would survive such an endeavour, and with that, you put the entire planet at risk.”

“But we saved the planet in doing so and you can’t argue against that,” Skylar spoke up and was surprised when she wasn’t jabbed with electricity. In fact, the guards just moved nervously beside her. They still regarded her as the Princess and to harm her without permission was still against the law in their eyes.

“What have you become our dear Skylar?” her father spoke, not being the passive man that he sometimes was against her mother. “Running away to the forests for two years, sending an imposter to take your place, entrusting a Creature with being Princess of Zeld, which was dangerous enough, a Creature as well! Then you form a team with some miscreants and invite The Miracle to our planet, raging war and risking the Pantheon in the process. This is not the daughter we raised.”

“Well you must have been blind in those years of raising me,” she quipped and this did earn her a punishment. She refused to fall to her knees however, she was stronger than that.

“And what a band of miscreants you have created,” Maeve said as she moved off of her throne and towards the group. “Fitzgerald Malloy, the only son of the Lich family responsible for many thefts and acts of violence.”

“And that’s only because Creatures are discriminated against,” Fitz gritted and Maeve rolled her eyes and moved on to Reese.

“Reese Turner, the unfortunate daughter, the one accused of the murder of her own family. Isn’t that why you ran to the Moracci? Your family moved after your brother’s death, then you moved after your mother’s death, and finally, you ran away when your father contracted the same illness that killed the others. You are the only gifted among your family. I remember when you met the Pantheon yourself.”

Stone cold eyes met Maeve’s, “And we all know that I didn’t kill my own family.” Reese gritted, straining in her anger at the accusation. 

Skylar had not known that the people beside her had come from such backgrounds but that didn't reflect on her friend's characters. That didn't matter to her.

“Well, not entirely. There’s always someone to blame, and innocence doesn’t equate to lack of punishment.” Maeve made her way back to her throne and looked back at the team, which was incomplete and angry. “Then you added Everett to the group, a human, the one thing that The Miracle wanted. Even you Skylar fell in love with him. That isn’t the daughter I know.”

Skylar missed Everett with a passion and she felt that crater in her chest more so than the Pantheon’s absence. She hadn’t got the blessing to have a life with him and who knew when their story could continue. Their story stretched across eons, a location she barely knew and the matters of humanity lay heavy on her shoulders.

“You wouldn’t know the blessings of humanity if he hit you in the face,” Skylar tutted and another jab sent her to her knees, her chains clanging painfully against the floor.

“The best thing for you would be exile, maybe then you will all recognise the wrongs you have committed. After all, your team wanted to run away and so run away you all shall.”

 

~

 

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