▶┆Chapter ninety-one 
❝It's better to burn out than to fade away.❞
▶Author's note◀ :
Sorry, it's been so long! I just started track and field and boi! I am so exhausted XD I have so much homework combined with my newly sore limbs. I'm planning to try and work out a sort of schedule, but I'm not quite sure which days would work best for me. I'll for sure let you guys know when I have the schedule put together. I love you guys!! Enjoy!~ <3
★·.·'¯'·.·★ иσямαℓ ρ.σ.ν. ★·.·'¯'·.·★
LUCY GROANED AS SHE lifted her head off of the cold cement floor. Her eyes were cloudy, and not at all like the limpid sky outside of her cell. She blinked slowly―Lucy's eyelids felt extremely heavy, and her head pounded as if a drummer had thrummed on her skull. With weak and decrepit limbs, she attempted to push herself to her feet.
It didn't work out well. Lucy yelped in agony as she collapsed, and ended up sprawled on the floor. With a disgruntled groan, she scrunched her eyes in pain. After taking a moment of repose, she glanced around the meek and monotonous confinement cell. The walls were a boring gray, the slabs of stone dull and ugly to the eye. The floor was solid concrete and scratched at her battered knees.
Lucy eyed the bed of hay―or what was supposed to be a bed. It was a couple of feet away, with strips of straw strewn about. The hay was in clumps and looked extremely uncomfortable. Lucy rolled onto it anyway and frowned at the lumpy texture.
Then again, it was all she'd have for god knows how long. Lucy looked out the small barred window, and a pang of longing hit her like a bullet. She wished she could leave―could open her wings like a bird and fly away.
She moved on her side, her breath hissing from her lips like sand trickled through an hourglass. Everything ached, and she could feel every bruise, every ounce of pain. Like ink being dropped into water, the agony had spread fast and far, leaving a trail of misery.
Part of her longed to get up. Lucy had to have some magic left―something she could utilize to free herself. She couldn't just lay here forever...
'Then again, what does it matter?'
'I'm all alone...everyone I've ever cared about is gone...why should it matter if I rot in this cell for eternity?'
Lucy continued to stare out the barred window, knowing that it didn't matter. Everyone's story had to end at one point, and not everyone received a happily ever after. Perhaps this was her end―maybe it was all over.
Her eyes scrunched up, and she lifted her arms as if she were going to rise. The mere effort caused spirals of pain to climb through her arms. She tiredly climbed to the barred portion of her cage, reaching and clawing. Her breaths began to accelerate, and before she knew it, her arms collapsed like broken toothpicks.
Lucy's fingers just managed to ghost over the door, before she could no longer force herself onwards. She laid her cheek against the cold floor and closed her eyes. Every inhale she indulged in provided her with the scent of dirt and must.
Everything was silent. Until a door screeched open, making her eyes peel open in alarm. She watched warily as a figure approached.
"Hey there, Lucy," A deep voice of a man said somberly. She squinted, trying to make out the features in the dim, lightless cell. The person stepped closer, allowing a ray of sunlight to peer through the small window onto his features. The golden glow of the sun illuminated hair as white as snow, and blue eyes as brilliant as sharp gemstones.
"Kaden," She rasped out, arching an eyebrow. She recognized his deep voice anywhere, and Lucy wrinkled her nose in distaste at the sight of him. Everyone in Crimson Flag, especially him and Lila, needed to leave her alone. Lila and Kaden had dragged her into this hell, and now she'd forever decay away here. Like an old and worn star, she'd fade away and be forgotten.
He frowned at her position on the floor and felt a pang of sympathy. None of this was right―she was supposed to find power here. At least, that's what Lila had said. Lila had reasoned that Lucy could get revenge through their dark guild. But from what Kaden had seen, they were only making it worse. Now she was a prisoner, all because their pig of a master was awful and Lucy was too stubborn, strong-minded, and prideful to let herself be broken down. He wanted to help her―he really did. But something seemed to stop him. It was like a mental block. It always smashed any lingering thoughts of rebellion―pulverized any hope he had of being free into pulp.
He hefted the silver tray in his hands and moved to the small slot near the end of the door. He had made sure the food was actually edible and not revolting, both to the eye and mouth. Lucy, despite her stubborn attempt to appear aloof, felt her mouth water at the sight of decent food. There was scrumptious looking pasta in a maroon bowl, along with toasted bread with garlic and basil. He had even managed to snatch some vegetables for her, which were a nice side salad and mashed potatoes and gravy. A tall glass of ice water sat on the right of the plate, along with a fork and spoon. No knife, for obvious reasons.
She tried to appear nonchalant―she really did. But Lucy's stomach craved for food because she hadn't eaten in days. She already felt weak and light-headed, but the ache in her stomach made her not want to move at all.
"I have one more thing for you," Kaden said nicely. She glanced up, already forcing herself into a sitting position. Something about the new and pleasant smelling food offered her strength to sit.
He pulled a porcelain plate from behind his back, something she was now noticing he was hiding. In that second, she literally felt a smile almost crawl onto her features. He had gotten her a piece of rich chocolate cake to eat. It had cute chocolate decorations and frosting, and was accompanied by a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Before she smiled or showed any reaction, she shot him an accusing stare. What game was he playing? Why was he being so kind to her? There had to be a reason. There was no way someone from such a cruel and merciless guild had even a drop of kindness left in his body.
Lucy watched as he beamed at her, and waltzed towards the door.
"I'll be back later. Maybe I'll bring you a book, or a sketch pad and pencil."
She was still confused―what was going on?
"W-Wait!" She said. He stopped right as he was about to exit. "Yes?"
"Why are you...I mean, why are you being so kind? Why are you being so courteous?" She inquired softly.
He smiled at her, but it wasn't cheery. There was something hidden beneath that lopsided smile, and she knew exactly what it was. Although something seemed to be blocking it, she knew he wasn't evil. Not entirely so. There was something sad about him. Something that made her actually want to trust him―of course, the idea was preposterous. Trusting the enemy was a big no-no. Yet...she wondered what making a friend of her jailer would really do. It wasn't like she'd be leaving any time soon. She couldn't leave until she both figured out a plan to escape, and healed up enough.
"Maybe I want to get out of here as much as you do." His reply stunned her momentarily.
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