Skylar – The Other Side of the Moon 2: Struggle

It all started with this post: ∼Skylar – The other side of the Moon

Skylar tried to pull herself from gravity’s heavy vines. She succeeded only in dragging her severely wounded body with her left arm. It had been somehow spared from violence. Every breath required effort and as she got closer to an unconscious Carlos, blood dripped the stench of her violent experience filling the air between them. She inhaled the scent of crimson with her mouth. The metallic taste enveloping her struggle. Her nostrils were blocked with bruises from the beating. Her efforts were a painful reminder of her partner’s words just a short time before the confrontation. “…I know you were looking forward to a chaotic first night out. Don’t be in such a rush. No chaos is good. We want that.” She had never felt so much pain in her life. By all accounts, she should have died. Covered in blood hoping to still find Carlos alive and call for back up, she noticed their drone smashed to pieces. That alone should have signaled headquarters to send in reinforcements. Something was off, way off. The way the attackers disengaged and just disappeared. Something was definitely… not right. She felt herself fading fast. Her ribs struggling to withstand the pain. Her injuries were heavy and she could no longer nurse the effort. She gave in and gave up. Her body surrendering to the ache of fatigue as she collapsed beside her partner.

Enox laughed with great delight. He had seen enough to be certain Acadia was mistaken about the young woman. Acadia had a tear sliding down her right eye. She had turned red from the fire inside her.

“Enox! You are a monster! How could you! Have you any idea what she must be going through! Are you so heartless a being?”

“Acadia! Enough of this nonsense! She is not the one. Let her be and live her insignificant life. You will not find what you are looking for from an earthling.”

“You think me a fool, Enox? Do you really think I would go after an insignificant earthling? We are trying to save them, and it will take more than a human to do so. I’m bringing her up.”

Acadia reached for the controls on the dashboard but Enox held her wrists and pulled her close. Her sapphire eyes filled with desperation.

“Acadia! I won’t be party to this! You’ve tested me for the last time!”

“Are you afraid I’m right, Enox? Is that it? You’re frightened we might be on the right track. The humans would thrive and there would be no need for these missions. You were never happy on Aridam.”

Enox released her and took a step back. She knew him well. He was a slave to adventure and Aridam was not the place for that. Chained to a desk and the dry stench of its air. His life was written in the stars. However, he would follow her and whole heartedly settle if Acadia would also. His heart belonged to her. A secret he held fast for fear she may not reciprocate. Such a human quality hidden in a superior species. She was his weakness and his strength. It tormented him every day. It was evident in his negative behavior towards her efforts. He often admired her tenacity and resisted feigning his disdain. His fear, however, was his greatest ally and drew upon it to challenge her.

“You know very well the See will test her vigorously. She will not survive. Do you understand? I’ve put her through nothing compared to what they will do to her when they find out.”

“I aim to prepare her Enox. Do not stand in my way again. You know you will lose.”

She veered at him through the cold in her voice. It is what he loved most about her. She was passionate and not easily swayed if at all. She was a rare Aridamian female. Most were docile and easily turned. Acadia was a rare exception. The See recognized her prowess when she was but a child. Now a slave to the missions that required her talents, she was a force to be reckoned with. Enox relaxed his stance and took a deep breath before uttering another word. The saddest piece in his thoughts, his doubts… if she was wrong, her fate and that of her Skylar would be sealed. The See showed little, if any, tolerance for rule breakers. He was about to allow Acadia to do just that.

“Very well Acadia. I will allow it. You know how this will end if you are wrong. And even if you are right, what you are doing, breaking with protocol, would end with yours and her demise. Take that as a warning and I hope that your conscience is at peace with your choices.”

“What do you mean?” Acadia was taken aback by his words. Unsuspecting of the love from which they were spoken.

“If your efforts fail, not only will you be succumbing Skylar to a brutal death, but you are putting my life at risk as well.”

He uttered the words softly, defeated, surrendering to her. He walked away in thoughtful turmoil. It was all he could do from crying out his affection. Acadia swallowed and while a tiny bit of guilt sunk deeply in her heart, she turned towards the controls of the navigation panel. The sounds of a few buttons being clicked and the typing of the coordinates were Skylar and Carlos lay, pierced Enox’s ears as he looked out into the starry void. Acadia, feeling secure in her choice with little regard for anything or anyone else, smiled when she saw the two bodies disappear from their concrete bed, as if they had never existed.

© 2019 Mel Gutiér

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