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The New World [m]

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Offline yautjan

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Namir finished her bar before responding, crumpling up the paper wrapper up and tossing it into the stove, to let the fire eat it. The Resistance wasn't hurting for paper, at least, otherwise she would've saved it. Thank goodness for trees. It burned quickly, and she watched it curl in on itself, devoured like the rest of the world by the great wars of ages long past.

"Well," she started. "They'll probably be pissed. They don't always see eye to eye with the assassins in the Resistance." She settled back into her nest. "My group will be surprised I've spared you. A few of them have recruited former targets, but I'm not one of them. Sometimes someone just ends up being better off working for you than dead, but most of the time, they're better off dead."

She checked the time on her tablet, then laid back with it in hand, tapping through a few screens idly. "They'll be annoyed more than anything that I wasted the opportunity to enter the compound only to not leave without killing someone important. If I could've gotten another of the doctors, or even the general..." She sighed. "Someday."
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Offline heartstringss

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Confirmation at her suspicion that she might be Namir's first spared kill was met with a hint of vague shock. At least there had been other recruitments, even if they weren't as easily accepted by Namir as they had been by others in her group. If she hadn't felt she already owed the woman and her cause her entire life and every bit of her future before, she certainly did now.

She still couldn't help but think Namir was wrong about one thing, though: she would have been better off dead, more than anything else. There were just too many wrongs in her past, and she wasn't sure how readily she believed that any of them could ever truly be forgiven. Was she even ready to tell her story? Or did she even have a choice?

The brunette watched the other woman lie back with a small tablet device clasped between her hands, the screen's display illuminating the dark lines and shadows of the assassin's bare face. She shook her head slightly to clear it, sucked a little harder on the dried meat tucked into the back of her cheek, and shifted uncertainly by the fire til at last she settled back into her own blankets as well.

It was a long while before she said anything more, her mind nearly buckling from the weight of everything new that had come into her life on such short notice. She was hardly aware of herself chewing anxiously on the surface of her lip until the sharp sting of broken skin brought forth fresh blood, and she promptly wiped it away.

"What if I'm not sure I can be brave enough?" The words came out a haunted whisper from across the fire, startled green eyes locked on the cracks in the ceiling overhead. "I could help you get the general... More doctors. The worst of the worst. I've worked with them all, but--" she cut her eyes away from the ceiling at last, but at the same time found she couldn't look at Namir. Instead she stared off into the other direction, a shaky breath escaping her lips. "More people could die just trying to get at them. A lot more. And the list of the dead is already so long..."

For a long pause, she wasn't sure what exactly she was trying to say. Or maybe she did, and it was just too hard to say out loud. Sucking in another deep breath through her nose, she finally spit it out. "I'm not sure I can handle any more people dying because of me."


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Namir accepted the silence readily, keeping an eye on the time read out by the tablet as she checked the Resistance's rudimentary data-log and message system. She was not expected to reply to anything for at least two more days, as they wanted to avoid any interception when she was so deep in the enemy's territory. Her device was better-encrypted than most, but the risk was still high of her position or status being picked up by the Council and their army of baby-killers.

Contrast to Lyra, she was relatively relaxed, confident in her ability to explain away her decision to her superiors. They truly didn't always see eye to eye, and Namir often operated without their approval, but no one could deny that she didn't often know what she was doing. Sparing this doctor, though... She knew her people would have some words to say to her about it. She could only imagine the chewing out Zar was going to give her.

Lyra's voice drew her back from her thoughts, and she looked over. "The only person who is gonna die because of you at this rate is you," Namir said. "Your information is invaluable, but we intend to kill them with or without you. We're more likely to die without your intel than we are with it."

She finally sat up, stretching and putting the tablet away. Grabbing her braid, she wound it up and pulled her hood back up, before snatching up her mask and refixing it to her face.

"And we're willing to die if it means we can save humanity." Her soft voice was gone, replaced by the distorted noise of the mask's filter and sound changer.

Namir stood, stretching out her legs, and turned away from Lyra. "It's almost 11. I'm gonna go scout. Don't leave this bunker unless you absolutely must."
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Offline heartstringss

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Lyra could feel herself beginning to slip into a panic and had to force herself to manually slow her breathing just to stave it off. She needed to stop worrying so much, but couldn’t seem to shake it off. Namir’s response came as a small comfort at least, the brutal honesty much appreciated. Even if the truth might hurt her more, it still mattered that she heard it.

For the past several years she hadn’t been able to talk about her trauma. Instead, she’d always had to lock those feelings away for fear of what might happen if she voiced them to the wrong person. Finally having someone she could bounce her worries off of was almost a relief… if only she could get past the fear of coming across too whiny, or ungrateful, or inconsiderate — especially knowing Namir already despised her so much for the role she’d played.

“I guess you’re right,” the doctor said after a moment, finally snapping out of her reverie whenever the other woman sat up and began fixing up her hood and mask. When the other woman stood and stretched her legs, telling her that she was going to head out of the bunker for a little while to scout and that she was not to leave unless absolutely necessary, she gave a solemn nod. Even if she had wanted to leave, there was nowhere else she could go. Returning to the commune certainly wasn’t an option. If anything, she was just relieved to finally be free of that miserable place.

She didn’t voice it out loud, but if she was being honest, Lyra was a little nervous about being alone. Likely the other woman wasn’t going very far and would continue to keep an eye on the bunker in case if she did try to sneak out, but what if someone else snuck in and she didn’t have a way to defend herself? How soon would Namir realize if something like that had gone wrong, and how quickly would she be able to return? It was clear that despite the fact the assassin was opting to leave her by herself hardly even twelve hours after the two had first become acquainted, she still didn’t trust her very much. They had made some progress, but it was reasonably slow going considering how much bad there was to account for.

Hardly five minutes had passed since Namir had left the bunker before Lyra finally got up and began pacing the area. She could feel herself starting to get restless, as she wasn’t used to being inactive so far into the day. If the assassin hadn’t broken in the night before and taken her from the commune, she would have been at work right now, likely working another 12 hour shift sorting through new test subjects. A shiver racked the doctor’s thin torso at the thought; granted, she was relieved to not have to be at work, but that didn’t change the fact that she couldn’t stand being idle for so long.

She needed something to do, something to keep her mind occupied or else she was just going to fall into another panic attack. Of course, Lyra was used to having and dealing with those by herself, but her situation was too precarious to take any risks right now—she couldn’t afford the vulnerability. There was also the fact that she was still so exhausted, but a nap was also out of the question. Even if she had wanted to take one, she wouldn’t have been able to… her body had a schedule, even if it was slightly erratic.

After a fair bit of pacing, the doctor finally came up with a plan to distract herself. She began to wander the bunker, picking through the remains of so many discarded materials that were scattered all about the room. Lots of old clothes, trash… Most of it was useless, but every now and then she’d find something with purpose. A backpack, old and tattered, musty in its disuse. She picked that up, empty out the useless remains, and hauled the thin straps over her shoulders. She didn’t have much of her own possessions to put into it right now, but it could still prove useful in the near future.

In a far corner of the large room, there was a makeshift bathroom area carved into the wall: a small shower stall, a single toilet. A try at the faucet in the shower provided insight that the pipes were unfortunately no longer working. What a shame -- a shower might have been nice. On the other side of the small room, there was a cabinet stocked to the brim with towels, soap, a small assortment of hygiene products. She raided that supply in earnest, as most of her own toiletries had been left behind at the commune as well. They’d been in her locker on the opposite side of the building anyway, so she wouldn’t have been able to take anything even if she had remembered to.

At the back of the cabinet she found a couple toothbrushes still in their packaging, a half-empty tube of toothpaste, a small wooden comb. She tossed these items into her new bag and continued on about the room. There wasn’t much else she could really take with her, as most of it was too bulky to even try to squeeze into the bag. Sure, there was the small problem that once they finally reached their destination she would only have one or two sets of clothes to work with, but there was only so much she could haul on her back without risking slowing herself down too much in the progress.

With a sigh, she returned to the wardrobe by the wall and grabbed the few articles of clothing she had brought with her, still a little damp from trekking through the snow the night before. She moved them closer to the stove, spread out in the empty space between her and Namir’s two separate cots so that the fire might dry them a little bit faster. It was as she was finally returning to her own cot and settling back into the covers to try to rest for a bit that the door on the other side of the room creaked open. Lyra felt her spine go rigid as she shot back up, peering through the half-dark and then letting out a sigh of relief to see it was just Namir.

“So, how’s it look out there?”
« Last Edit: July 09, 2019, 03:45:30 AM by heartstringss »


Offline yautjan

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Namir was surprisingly grateful to escape the warmth of the fire and return to the blizzard gale outside. As amicable as the doctor had been that morning, there was still a degree of tension and discomfort between them. The assassin did not want to forget that Lyra still posed a danger, even though she seemed less harmful than a teacup dog with no teeth. She had done much to hurt and torture innocent people, and Namir did not desire to forget that until she felt reasonable retribution had been made on the doctor's part.

Out in the snow, she was back in her element--the assassin returned in full force, a machine of death and change that outmatched every foe the Council could throw her way. She turned around and scaled the dilapidated building the bunker hid beneath, shifting the snow with her foot as she went to conceal the door in again beneath its deep layers. Once a few stories up, she turned back around and faced the streets with what visibility she had, and started to scout the area.

As she suspected, the commune, ten blocks away, was in an uproar. The patrols had doubled, and their big guns were out, as if they were showing off in case the assassins decided to return. Clearly they didn't look up very often, since Namir had done exactly that, but she kept her distance with as much caution as she could manage.

In the snow she could see the marks of other patrols--perhaps scouting the city out, looking for any signs of the assassin and missing doctor. They were right in assuming they hadn't gotten too far, but with the undiscovered bunker still in hiding, they would have trouble finding the doctor in question or the assassin who had caused them any degree of trouble. In fact, she figured it probably made them more nervous, to know their security was so loose that someone could slip in and steal a person with no commotion or alerting of any guards except the one who had been killed.

Namir, satisfied with what she had gathered, returned to the bunker after approximately an hour, slipping in the door once the coast was clear of any rogue patrol. Lyra was clearly startled, but she seemed less freaked and more comforted by the realization it was one of the assassins than most people would have been.

Namir pulled off her mask and shook her hood down, letting her braid fall back out to her hips. "I think we should move tomorrow," she said. "There are a lot of people out looking for us right now."
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Offline heartstringss

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Lyra could feel her exhaustion growing with each waking moment. She knew she probably should have been more worried about what was going on outside, that perhaps it was a little strange how easily she was finding it to adjust. Then again, this wasn’t the first time her life had taken a strange turn. It had been all too tempting to just get up and walk away from the great horror that had become her life, to leave everything behind at the mere drop of a hat — all her worldly possessions and everyone she had come to know.

It’s not like there had even been all that much she’d chosen to leave behind in the first place… For the past several years, the doctor had opted for a very solitary existence — her possessions had been few, the number of people she’d trusted to share even a single detail of her life with so limited it was practically null. It was so much easier just choosing to leave everything behind and rely on the single person who had wanted her dead more than anything else, then it had ever been letting someone else in while she’d been back at the commune.

“No surprise there,” the doctor scoffed almost bitterly. Of course there were troops out searching for them; Hadley was probably having a complete meltdown. No way in hell was he going to let a doctor of her skill-set - and especially Hyles in particular - slip away that easily without putting up a fight. The assassinations were bad enough, but a kidnapping was practically unheard of in their facility. Perhaps in the other facilities they were more common, but not with Hadley’s team.

Honestly, if the General thought he could have gotten away with it, he probably would have had her microchipped or GPS-tagged in an instant. Then again, what with the communal living, the militarized escorts everywhere they went, the high level of control over every single aspect of their lives, there’d never been any need to do such a thing. They were already on such a short leash to begin with, what more could they possibly have to lose?

Lyra shuddered at the very thought of the General and the manhunt he was likely leading outside. Hadley had always displayed an intense sense of possession over the young doctor, more so than any of his other subjects. Lyra had always assumed it was because she’d been so easy to manipulate right from the very start; she’d had no choice but to go along with every single one of his demands, what with the threat he’d made against her brother’s life. Rebellion had never been an option. For the past 8 years, all she had felt this entire time was numb. Even now, she wasn’t entirely sure how to feel.

“He won’t give up that easily, you know. He’ll keep looking for me, long after we’ve disappeared.” Her tone was almost haunted, voice low and husky with the effort. You’d think she hadn’t used her voice in years, the way it sounded sometimes. Ever since the night terrors had gotten worse and she’d started having screaming fits in her sleep, her voice had changed, taking on a new personality. It still startled her occasionally, hearing herself speak again. She didn’t even sound like herself anymore.

Green eyes stared up at the ceiling, her heart heavy like a weight inside her chest. Would she ever be free of this nightmare, or would it follow her around everywhere she went for the rest of her life? “But I guess that’s not necessarily a bad thing… He’ll slip up eventually, and when he does, you’ll be ready,” she paused, glancing sideways back at the other woman. She was so tired, she could barely grasp a coherent thought. The same dread and worry kept swirling around and around inside her brain, like a warning. "...right?"
« Last Edit: July 10, 2019, 03:17:14 AM by heartstringss »


Offline yautjan

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Namir cast her a look as she locked the door, appraising her and her words as the doctor spoke. There was clearly some history she was not privy to between Lyra and the General, and from Lyra's tone Namir could make the assumption it wasn't anything warm and good. That was probably for the best--it reassured the assassin that she had made the right decision to recruit versus kill. It would give her another bullet point on her list of reasons to present to the Resistance.

"When he does," Namir said calmly, "I will personally rip his throat out."

She returned to the fire, setting her mask aside and plopping down into her nest of blankets. "This bunker remains safe for the time being. We can rest easy knowing that we'll have warning if someone approaches. Those patrols are neither sneaky nor crafty, showing off their strength the way they are."

Namir stretched her feet out so they were by the stove, crossing her arms behind her head. If she was nervous she concealed it well. "Get some rest, Lyra. We're going to need it in order to escape the city in full if this manhunt is gonna last as long as you say it is."
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Lyra gave a small nod at Namir’s response, the words oddly comforting considering the high level of violence implied. She didn’t say much more, finally settling back into her own blankets when the other woman told her she should rest. She didn’t bother to pull the blankets up over her body, as it was too hot by the fire for that anyway. Instead, they pooled around her middle and collected in a mass beneath her head like a pillow. Her slender body was angled away from the other woman, curled like a child into a semi-fetal position, hands close to her face like a boxer guarding their chin.

She hadn’t figured it would be so easy to get to sleep considering it was still mid-day and her mind was whirling, but surprisingly she drifted off within minutes. Perhaps she was more exhausted than she had realized. For a while things remained relatively peaceful, the doctor settling into a deep, dreamless sleep, which even when she did eventually start having visions were mostly harmless at first. She would only occasionally twitch or mumble, at times when her consciousness wavered back and forth—something which could be perceived as normal, not exactly cause for alarm.

It was hours later before things took a turn for the worst, a nightmare sneaking up like a thief in the night.

It was quiet and she was alone in the dark. Her wrist ached, a pair of shackles lay at her feet. In the distance, a sound could be heard through the eerie silence. Light footsteps through a puddle, splashing like a child. A streak of moonlight from above illuminated a figure down a long narrow path — closer observation revealed her brother as a teen, a carbon-copy of the doctor but taller, with wider shoulders and pale grey eyes instead of green. Otherwise he had the same dark hair, the same lily-white complexion.

When the two locked eyes, recognition was instantaneous. They started running towards each other, both crying the same tears of joy — then all at once Alan’s body snapped back like a rubber band. He hit the ground like a sack of bricks, the impact causing cut to erupt across his face spurting blood like a burst artery. A corpse-like hand latched around his ankle and began dragging him backwards through the muck. Lyra ran after him, but no matter how hard she pumped her legs, she just wasn’t fast enough. Her voice echoed through the dark —

“No—Alan! Let him go, take me instead!”

Things slowed down tremendously then. She was finally close enough, just close enough to help him to his feet. The two sobbed into each other’s arms, they linked hands and began walking away. A split-second later, there was a loud bang and her brother’s hand went limp inside her own. When she looked over, she was met with a pale corpse covered in red. Where Alan's face should have been was just a hole leaking blood and brain matter out the sides.

His hand clung onto her own, even as his body fell to the ground. It clung on, even as the ground opened up beneath their feet and dragged them both down into a pit of raging inferno. Even in her sleep, she could feel the fire licking at her skin. She could feel nothing else, as her skin sloughed off her bones and dripped into the earth. She screamed and screamed and screamed until her lungs burst and her ears bled and she could feel nothing else but the pain.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2019, 05:09:03 AM by heartstringss »


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It was nearing dusk when Lyra started screaming.

Namir had finally fallen asleep herself, feeling surprised by how little danger she sensed from the doctor. The more she spoke to Lyra, the more sincere it seemed she was about being glad to be out of the commune, even if she wasn't outright stating it. The look in Lyra's eyes spoke volumes to Namir--even if she herself had not experienced the kind of things Lyra must have, Namir's comrades were not so fortunate, and she felt she could gather what the relationship between the general and Lyra had been: abusive and manipulative. Perhaps that was why Lyra had become one of the damned doctors at all.

Don't start assuming things, she reminded herself. Your sympathy will be the death of you one day, Nams.

Her sleep had been relatively undisturbed, and she'd awoken shortly after four feeling much more refreshed and in the same breath a thousand times more exhausted. She wanted to get home to her bed after all this, to the comforting circles of her fellow assassins, and forget the moral dilemma she was preparing to present to the Resistance. She'd spent the next few hours cleaning her gun and working on the tablet, being mindful of its battery life. (By working, she was playing games).

Then Lyra started tossing and turning, muttering under her breath, and Namir kept an eye on her. She tensed, watching, but then the doctor seemed to relax and the episode had passed. It was just as Namir herself was beginning to relax that Lyra started screaming.

Namir was up in an instant, her gun in her hand before she even knew what she was doing, and she immediately discarded it once she was aware that it was in fact in her palm and her hands were trying to go through the motions of cocking and aiming the pistol. She practically leapt on Lyra, grabbing the doctor by her front and giving her a hard shake.

"Lyra!" she snapped. "Hyles!" The doctor did not respond, lost in her nightmare, and Namir in a mild panic slapped the doctor across the cheek, then slapped her hand down on her mouth to silence her. Her other hand went to Lyra's chest, shoving her into the ground. "Wake up! Stop!!"
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The doctor's bright green eyes, now shot startlingly red with a number of newly broken blood vessels, were wide and crazed when they finally tore open. They shot in every which direction in the dark before eventually locking onto Namir's face above her own. It was near impossible upon first waking to tell the difference between that miserable, unending torture she had felt in her nightmare, and the sharp stinging pain in her cheek she was feeling now, but after a moment she managed to separate the two.

Her breath ran ragged in her ruined throat and she strained around the assassin's hand pressed firmly to her mouth. Wind whistled and puffed out of her nostrils, flared like a bull's as she struggled to settle down. The other woman's hand pressing into the center of her chest sent her into a brief panic, the pressure startlingly unwelcome, but no matter how much she strained and pressed back against the other woman, she wasn't quite strong enough to shake her off.

When she finally did settle down, it was like a switch flipping in her head how suddenly it happened. The screaming had gone muffled at first, then stopped all at once. Her eyes circled up, searching miserably, and then finally drifted shut. Her breath still puffed in and out at a heavy runner's-type pace, but she no longer pushed back against the assassin's hands as if she was trying to fight her off. She lay back, defeated and ashamed, feeling extremely vulnerable in the aftermath of her newly ripped open trauma.

When she felt she had regained enough control over her own body to finally be able to trust her own judgment again, Lyra reached up and peeled Namir's fingers off her mouth. Her hands were cold, skin calloused and red from years of washing too frequently. Bloodshot eyes drifted open but she looked anywhere but at the other woman. Her hand moved shakily to her face, covering her eyes, as a thin dampness spread within. Thin shoulders shook with an intensity like a freight train as a vision of that same nightmare shot through her mind once more.

"Oh god," were the only words that came out of her mouth, her voice produced low and raspy from the now-raw muscle of her throat. "Jesus christ. Fuck,"
« Last Edit: July 10, 2019, 12:58:27 PM by heartstringss »


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Namir breathed a sigh of relief when Lyra stopped struggling and relaxed beneath her, slowly letting go of her chest and mouth. "You're awake," she told her, backing off. "It was just a dream."

Her own heart was racing however, the discarded pistol a reminder of how close she had come to doing something she would've come to regret with immediacy. She couldn't blame herself for being startled. If this was what they were going to be dealing with every time Lyra slept, then this was going to be a major problem. She could've given away their hiding place with her shrieking.

"Don't do that again," she breathed out, putting a hand to her own heart to steady herself. "Allah above, that--"

She cut herself off, because clear as day from outside she heard someone shout, "I think it came from over here!"

Namir met Lyra's eyes, and for a brief moment her emotions were bared and her panic was clear. They'd been heard.

"Get up!" she hissed, jumping to her feet and grabbing her gun. "Grab everything! Put the fire out! We're leaving, now!"
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As soon as the other woman backed off and gave her space, Lyra sat up. Her head remained in her hands for the time being, thin fingers tugging at the dark hair around her temples, her head shaking gently back and forth as she tried to clear the last remnants of the nightmare from her mind. When Namir’s voice breathed out telling her not to do that again, like she even had a choice in the matter to begin with, all she could do was scoff. Even if she had known any other way to react, she wouldn’t get a chance to say anything more.

The doctor was on her feet nearly right away, blankets kicked off and discarded at a second’s notice. Most likely it was the adrenaline still coursing through her veins, but it didn’t take long for her to snap to action. Unfortunately, there wasn’t enough time for her to fully dress, or to do hardly anything more than shove her feet into her boots and dawn her coat before tossing her backpack over her shoulder.

Lyra felt for the envelope, the jar of dried meats in her pocket. She stooped down and scooped up the extra pair of pants that had been laid out to try overnight, balling them into a tight wad before promptly shoving them into her bag as well. Before she could forget, she bent down and flipped the switch on the stove to turn off the flame.

In the next instant she had rejoined the other woman at her side, hardly aware of the fact she was shaking. As soon as Namir said go, she was right behind her following her every single move.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2019, 11:54:06 PM by heartstringss »


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Namir did not have much to grab. As much as she would've liked to take the blankets, they were bulky and would weigh them down. She slapped her mask on and pulled her hood up, shoving her braid into her hood roughly. "Do not lose sight of me," she told Lyra sternly. "Stay close. Follow me."

She went to the door, and peered through the keyhole, attempting to get a good idea of just how much time they had. She immediately pulled back and stepped back twice, pulling her gun out and cocking it before aiming at the door.

"We're going to have to kill them," she said grimly. "Stay behind me."

A foot kicked the door down with impressive force, and before the door had even hit the ground Namir fired off two shots, hitting the man who had kicked the door in in the chest. She rushed forward as soon as the shots hit, sprinting for the opening and pulling a knife from seemingly nowhere as she leapt into the snow and into the pack of soldiers.

Only one understood what he was looking at, and he screamed it out with fear in his voice. "The assassin!"

Namir slashed his throat before he could do anything else, spinning and kicking the third soldier in the jaw with enough force to break his neck. A fourth one shot at her, and it missed her by an inch. She flipped the knife and threw it into his chest. He fell, silence returning to the night, and she looked back to Lyra with urgency.

"Run!" she ordered her. "For the city's edge! I'm right behind you!"
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Lyra nodded sharply at each one of the other woman’s orders, making sure to stick as close as possible so as to avoid getting split up. They would have been lucky to escape unscathed without a fight, considering how close those voices had sounded. Unfortunately though, they weren’t lucky, and it seemed the fight was coming straight to them.

When Namir went to the door to peer through the keyhole and then immediately stepped back, Lyra felt her shoulders tense and her breath hitched painfully in her throat. She stepped back in time with the other woman, quickly moving behind her so that she was out of the way but still concealed as well. It felt almost like she was using Namir as a shield, but without a single weapon or any fighting skills to stand her own ground, what other choice did she have?

The fight began and then was over just as quickly as it had started. With the metal-lined bunker being barren and huge as it was, the noise bounced off the walls, harsh and deafening. It took everything in the doctor’s power to keep from covering her ears, her eyes, and backing swiftly into a corner. It wasn’t the noise that alarmed her but rather the violence - which was ironic considering the nature of her work, until one considered how very rarely she would have dealt with guns.

While Namir went after and took down each opponent in rapid succession, Lyra followed behind the other woman, sticking close as she had been told but not close enough to risk getting in the younger woman’s way. Before too long, the last patrolman had fallen to the ground and silence returned to the stillness of night. The masked assassin turned back in her direction, and ordered her to run. Lyra didn’t even hesitate.

The doctor turned tail and took off, legs pumping as she pushed her way through the snow, her mind locked on a singular task - to get as far away as possible, as quickly as she could. She did her best to ignore the severity of the windchill beating against her face, the deep, bone-chilling cold of the snow already seeping through her pants-legs. She could feel tears stinging at the corners of her eyes, then freezing to tiny icicles almost as instantly as they had appeared.

It was a long run to the city’s edge, but Lyra knew the way. It was hard not to: The farther one got from the center of the city, the less there was up ahead. All the different structures leftover from before the war — the old skyscrapers and storefronts, all dilapidated as they were in present time — becoming fewer and farer between, the earth slowly fading out into intimidating snow-covered nothingness. The only spot left on the horizon up ahead: a dense skeletal forest, dark and looming in the distance.

When she finally reached the forest’s edge, only then did Lyra stop. She wasn’t sure how long or how far she had run, except that she wasn’t sure she could go any farther. Her lungs felt about ready to burst. She collapsed into the snow - a bit shallower here, considering the coverage overhead - at the base of a huge oak, the thickness of the tree’s trunk and limbs casting a huge shadow that cloaked her body entirely in darkness.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2019, 01:58:51 AM by heartstringss »


Offline yautjan

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Namir was grateful that Lyra had the sense to obey her orders now. The patrol's death was already known, the one man's screams having echoed through the snowy cityscape, and more were surely on their way. No, in fact, they definitely were on their way. She needed to buy Lyra time to run, to get away, and she formulated a plan fast in her mind and executed it as soon as it was somewhat complete.

"Woohoo," she shouted at the next patrol that rounded the nearest corner, standing on one foot to gain some height and waving her arm. "Over here!"

"What the--" one of them said, and Namir bolted the opposite way Lyra had gone, fully intending to lead them on a wild goose chase through the city before rejoining her 'hostage' in the forest that Namir could only assume Lyra was going to head towards. Even if she did not know the city well, it surrounded much of it, and it would be much easier a task to try and find her there than protect her every move as they both fled on the same path. She scaled the first building she felt she safely could, and continued to give them obvious hints as to her location without giving them a chance to open fire on her--knocking things down, shouting at them, lining up a shot and taking it when she felt she could pick off at least one or two of the commune's guards. Anything to reduce their numbers was a win in her book.

She kept the chase up for an impressive amount of time, until even she was heaving for breath, and she finally broke off after approximately twenty minutes of straight running and distraction. She slid into the shadows and doubled back, finding her way back to the bunker and then following Lyra's trail from there.

Once she reached the forest, Namir was gasping, her gait slowed as her legs burned from the intense exercise with little nutrition or water in her system to keep her going. Her mask's night vision was an immense boon in her escape and pathfinding, and yet she determined quickly that infrared would do her better in finding the doctor she had sprinted so much to protect. It took a few minutes as she dared not call out, but a small lump of warmth eventually presented itself, and she made her way over.

"Lyra," she said. "It's Namir."
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