The Fear Trials

'Hello. My name is Shal. I’m ten years old, and I need to tell this before I either die, or curl up in a ball and never move again.'

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20. 20

 

We looked around at each other, taking in the situation. There were only six of us. Six, and probably, soon to be 5.

Talia had laid Ala on the ground gently, looking at the sky. Ala’s eyes glimmered with happiness, even as tears rolled down her face.

“Free…” she whispered. “Free. Thank you…” her eyes sunk shut, and her hand fell away from her chest where the bullet had hit. Blood seeped out around her as she let out a shuddering breath. And then she was still.

“Ala?” Talia whispered. “Ala?!” she shook her, but there was no response. “NO!” she screamed, slamming her fists against a tree. “NO! She was going to live! She was going to make it! Why?!”

We stayed in silence, letting Talia rant. Finally, Zi, who had been silent this entire time, placed a hand on Talia’s shoulder. Mar followed. Sim and I watched in complete silence.

Finally, Talia stood, tears brimming in her eyes. “She… she died free, at least. She got to see the sky once. Let’s… let’s go.”

And without a word, we turned, walking grimly away, and into the forest. We left Ala there, head turned towards the sky, her face peaceful and relaxed in death. We walked away from the death, away from the pain. And towards our future. Whatever that might be.

 

Epilogue

 

There were voices. Voices whispering.

“Is she really the one?”

“She is now.”

“But what if everything goes wrong?”

“The rest are gone. She’s our only hope now.”

One of them spoke to me. “Hear that, little girl? You’re now the hero that’s going to save this world.”

I didn’t understand. But I couldn’t speak. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t do anything.

“This can’t be right,” a rich, smooth girl’s voice said from near me. “She can’t be-”

“Quiet. The girl is conscious,” another voice replied.

A pinch in my arm. My head began to spin. Colors danced through the blackness.

“Sleep, girl. You weren’t our first choice- but now you’re the one. For better or for worse.”

Everything went completely black, and I heard no more.

 
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