Chapter 14

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There was a deathly silence that followed Sara’s words. It hadn’t occurred from fear or shock, but was instead comprised of their shared anticipation. In truth, they all wanted to leave Calox, but not give up on everything that they had worked so hard on. They all felt a similar hatred for Justice and an undying urge to take back the past that had been stolen from them.

   Erika’s face was fresh with excitement, “When do we go?”

   Sara paused, unsure of how to answer her question. Fleeing was exactly what they were all hoping for – as soon as possible – but her mind had wandered to the other hybrids who knew nothing of fidèle. She didn’t wish to leave them behind, unaware of their constant manipulation. Sara had rarely cared for so many but justified the feeling with the unity that she had experienced amongst other hybrids.

   “We can’t just leave the others,” Callum said gently.

   Devin was as cold as ice with his retort: “They’ll slow us down. There’s a higher risk of being caught if we try to sneak everyone out of here.”

   Sara caught Devin’s eye, secretly glad that he had been the one to counter Callum’s argument. She hadn’t wanted to seem undecided in front of the others; especially not now she was under pressure to take charge once again. Her mind was filled with useless ideas and impossible escape routes. She needed a plan, and as the twins’ desperate eyes turned on her, one hit her.

   “Devin, do you think you could duplicate this?” Sara asked suddenly.

   He seemed confused for a moment, but nodded.

   “Good,” Sara said, “I need you to do so, and then we’ll scatter them all around the base. After that, if anyone chooses to leave, they can make their own way out because we’ll already be gone.”

   Callum and Devin both nodded which was a sign that her decision had been accepted by both of them. A wave of pride sank through Sara for a moment before Devin sprang into action, snatching the letter with his left hand and running from the cabin. They watched him go, each hoping for him to be back quickly so that they could leave.

*

Devin got back into the building, slipping past the guards with a bizarre, feline stealth. He seemed to become one with the shadows around him and prowl around the corners. Even his senses were heightened, almost to the extent of being able to hear the rustling of the carpet fibres under his feet. It was unnerving to be so in touch with the animal inside him but there was also a rush of power that seemed to surge through his body like an electrical current. Reaching the computer room he’d used before was almost too easy.

   He slid the door open, peeking through the crack in the door for any sign of guards, and only when completely sure the room was empty, he stepped inside. Everything was the same as before, illuminated only by the flickering computer screen and the dull spotlight on the ceiling. Devin made his way over to the printer and lifted up the top half to reveal a sleek glass screen, lightly scattered with dust. He wiped it away with his sleeve and then pressed the letter against the glass, smoothing as many of the creases out of the paper as he could.

   “Okay,” he said quietly, “I think thirty copies will be enough.”

   The printer creaked and groaned as Devin entered the settings, almost as if complaining about the work he was giving the machine. Despite the protests, it began to churn out replicas of the letter wedged in between the two halves of the printer. They appeared one by one, on brilliant white sheets, in a small grey drawer at the bottom.

   “Bingo,” Devin smiled at how close he was to exposing Calox.

   He reached down, scooping the last copy into his arms and pushed the tray back into the printer. Taking a deep breath, he stuck his head out of the doorway and glanced down the corridors. Yet again, there was no one on patrol and he escaped undetected, with thirty copies of the letter wedged up his shirt.

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