52 - Options

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With tears in my blood-red eyes, I do everything in my power not to murder Brink the minute we set foot outside the Headquarters. Stella most likely screwed with my emotions and made me think less about hating him for the time being. Plus, Zeriah suddenly chose to become his bodyguard, which made things a little more difficult. But I will have my chance. I will receive the justice I deserve.

Now, we--they--are all sprinting to who-knows-where. Brink is at the front of the line, but I don't know where he's headed. I'm not following him. I know where I need to go--as far away from Brink as possible, and as close to Travis as I can be.

"Which is where?" Brinks asks telepathically, snickering.

"Don't you dare even think about talking to me," I sneer out loud. From here on out, my thoughts are going into heavy lock up. I'm sick of Brink having an easy way in.

He finally shuts up, which prompts Zeriah to speak so things don't turn awkward between the group. "So, uh, where are we headed?" he wonders, his breath short from the running.

"Why don't you ask little miss princess over there?"

I laugh, not because I think he's amusing, but because I think he's annoying. "You, Brink, aren't going anywhere near me. Soon as you step into your beloved cave, I will be long gone, I assure you."

"Cave?" Stella asks us, speaking for the first time in a while.

"Why don't you ask little mister prince over there?" I mimic Brink's idiotic choice of words, and glance at Stella long enough to see her eyes roll. Brink laughs, which just pisses me off more. I can't even look at him without internally growling.

Zeriah and Stella wait for Brink to elaborate. "A few miles west is a cave we can bunker down in for a while until we get our hands on a vessel."

I can't help myself from chiming in. "Why aren't you getting one now? You have no place to go. I do. Big difference," I snap.

"Because I'm sure that Damon put them under lockdown the second he signaled the Programs. That's why. Have anything else to say?"

"Yeah. You're an asshole."

"Whatever," he grumbles. "Doesn't seem you need the meds after all. You seem to be back to your old obnoxious self."

I hold my hand up to strike, but Stella interrupts me. "Guys just calm down. You can fight when we get somewhere. Where are you going Aurora? I will follow you. Brink and Zeriah can separate if they wish."

My jaw hardens. I don't mind having Stella at my side, but I hate the thought of intermixing with any of the Five with my current state of mind. Brink has done a damn good job of shaping how I feel about them as a whole. "Fine, you can come. They can go wherever the hell they want to go."

Brink slows his pace, triggering us to do the same. We're getting close to the cave. I spot the ridge from here, a couple hundred feet from where we are now.

Zeriah takes it upon himself to speak up about where he stands in regards to our next destination."Why separate? We're safer together."

It's no surprise he doesn't want to be left alone with Brink. Who would right now?

"Zeriah is right," Stella agrees.

We come to a stopping point and form a little square, waiting for a final decision to be made. Mine is. "I'm going. Zeriah, Stella, if you want to join me, so be it. I don't care what happens to you Brink," I say viciously.

He crosses his arms, pretending to act tough.

"Now now now," Stella says, mediating us. "Brink should come, too. Zeriah's right. We are stronger and safer together. We're already one person short. Let's not make it two."

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