They Walk Among Us
Her eyes widened, and I could tell she was surprised I admitted it to her.
“Why would you tell me that? For all you know, I could be a spy and I’ll run to Gideon with this information.”
I shrugged. ::Go ahead and tell him. He won’t believe you. The power hungry and arrogant never believe those they perceive as weaker than them can hurt them.::
She tilted her head and studied me. “Why can I hear you? I thought Opalites could talk. At least most of the ones the bastards drag in here can.”
::They are young. I’m looking for one in particular. His name is Anson.::
The woman frowned as she thought. After a minute, she shook her head. “I’m sure he’s probably here, but I don’t know anyone’s name. He wants us friendly, but not that friendly.”
I snorted silently. Gideon was racking up the check marks against him in my mind. Maybe I’d take him out when it came time to leave here. He wasn’t really worth much, and while a man high on drugs could be manipulated, he was also unpredictable. I didn’t want to risk the rest of my mission by things going wrong with Gideon.
::Thank you. Don’t worry. I won’t leave you here.::
She nodded and moved back to her bed. I strolled to the opposite side of my cell. I peered into the dimly lit space in front of me. At that moment I wished I could speak, but instead I reached out with my mind, hoping to touch someone in there.
The low moan of pain I heard when my thoughts did encounter someone caused me to ease the force of them. I stroked along the ragged edges of the person’s mind, and I bit my lip when I realized it was the very Opalite I searched for.
::Anson, I know it hurts, but I need you to talk to me. If you can’t speak aloud, talk to me with your thoughts. I can hear you, and I’m here to get you out of here.::
Another whimper, but also the scrape of something moving across the floor. I crouched and reached between the bars. A hand emerged from the shadows, broken, bruised, and torn. I swallowed the bile threatening to escape my stomach, and I tamped down on the rage surging through my body.
::Are you all right?:: Zach’s inquiry brought me back to focus on Anson and not my own anger.
::I will be once I rip Gideon’s throat out.::
::I take it you found Anson.::
::Yes. I must talk to him, but be prepared to leave at any moment. I won’t remain here any longer than we must.::
Zach’s assent chimed through our link, and I smiled at how willing he was to accept my leadership without question. Oh, I knew the time would come when he forced me to sit down and tell him everything, but at the moment, it wasn’t important. The most important thing was to free all of these people from Gideon’s rule.
::Anson, show me in your mind where you’re hurt.::
Our fingers touched, and the images flooded my brain so fast, it almost overwhelmed me. Yet instead of telling him to slow down, I managed to corral and organize them. As I identified each spot, my healing power flowed from me. A soft blue glow surrounded Anson and me. His pain eased as I mended broken ribs, and a fractured leg. His internal injuries I healed the best I could. I needed more hands on to do anymore than take care of the immediate danger.
I separated our minds for a second to take a breath and center myself. ::I can’t do any more for you at this time, Anson. I need to be able to put my hands completely on your body to do more.::
::You’ve done more than I ever thought would be possible. I heard you tell the woman you were here to free us all. How can you do that?::
::Don’t worry about that. Just be ready to go. You’ll be able to move pretty fast now. I have to check with the others.::
::He tore out my wings.::
The anguish in Anson’s emotions brought tears to my eyes. An Opalite, even one as young as Anson, needed his wings to function normally. A wingless Opalite was half a person, and it was hard for them to continue on.
::Don’t give up, Anson. Gideon will pay for every wrong and hurt he caused you. Trust me, the time is coming when you won’t have to worry about your wings. I’ll tell you a secret. They will grow back.::
Excitement shot through Anson at my pronouncement. His wings would grow back once we’d left Earth and headed back to our home planet. The entire purpose of the mission I was on was to ensure we all went home. Yet I thought about Zach, and knew the time would come when I had to make a choice.
I shook myself. I couldn’t let my attention wander like that. The time hadn’t come for a decision yet, and I needed to get the jewel first before anything else could be decided.
I threw my thoughts out into the energy, hoping others would latch on to it. A riot of noise arose, filling my head with thoughts and pleas. I allowed it to go on for a few seconds before I asked for silence. It was quickly given to me, and I began to explain my plans for getting everyone out of there.
I’d just finished when I heard the door to whatever building I was in open. I settled back against the stone wall of my cell, not wanting them to see me talking to the human or Anson. I had checked for cameras before I even approached either of them. Not that I wouldn’t have been able to cause the equipment to malfunction. I didn’t want to bring Gideon to me any sooner than necessary.
“Well, it looks like the drugs have worn off.” Gideon propped his shoulder against the bars of my cell. “Too bad because it might have made what’s going to happen easier.”
I merely looked at him and blinked. ::He’s going to wish he had been drugged when I’m done tearing his heart from his chest.::