Voyagers of the Storm - An Interactive Story

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  • [Refuse to take action]
    I'm not completely sure, but this choice might prevent them from getting killed. Also, they wouldn't be betraying or endangering the Voyagers by doing this.

    5.5 There was always something Marshal wouldn’t share with certain members of the group because he could predict their reaction

  • [Refuse to take action]

    5.5 There was always something Marshal wouldn’t share with certain members of the group because he could predict their reaction

  • [Refuse to take action]

    That, I must admit, is definitely one of the harder decisions in the story so far. The only option I can rule out for certain is the last one, because that way, there will be guaranteed casualties. I doubt it'd be a situation where everyone is going to die, but I want to keep the body count as low as possible, so yeah, that option is out by default for me. Leona giving up herself, that kinda sounds like it won't achieve much. She said it herself, it is likely her group will be tracked down, so I think that is, at best, postponing what the second option will lead to. That second option though comes with the added bonus of the Voyagers probably being treated somewhat better, so it is the option I feel sounds like the best. Thing is, I don't know, I really don't know and because I am so indecisive and don't want to risk taking the second option on a pretty big maybe, refusing to take action is what I shall pick.

    5.5 There was always something Marshal wouldn’t share with certain members of the group because he could predict their reaction

  • edited July 2018

    (!) Voting is closed!
    Leona will refuse to take action.

    I noticed Liquid said this vote was one of the more difficult ones for the entire story, but you guys picked the best option out of the four.

    There was a chance that Leona and her entire group would die in two of these options.

    The second one would have been the worst, despite minimalizing casualties. Everyone the Voyagers got out of quarantine and every Voyager that would have been present when Onyx raided the motel would have been arrested. The group that’s doing the rallies would be forced to stay on the run because they would have no place to go home to and it would make achieving the Voyagers goal a lot more difficult.

    The choices in this chapter are mainly being used to build up the characters, groups, and the revolution itself.

    That being said, the part should be out momentarily.

  • 5.6

    Over the past two months since the run in with Luke, Milo had wandered back into New York.

    He tried to avoid the areas they had done rallies to avoid being noticed and having Onyx back on his trail, but it was growing increasingly difficult when everything about him was being broadcasted as if he had murdered an innocent man in cold blood.

    In fact, that’s how the story was being portrayed through the media.

    The one time he ran into someone from the rallies was enough to make him fear for his life, but he knew acting on that fear would be what killed him.

    The man noticed him from the rallies and offered to take him back to his place so he could hide out for a bit. Milo accepted the offer and went with the man. On the way, He told him about what the news stations were saying and how he refused to believe it because he had seen how the group behaved during the rallies.

    He lived on a farm that was spaced out far away from his neighbors, which was a surprising relief to Milo.

    When they got to the farm, he introduced Milo to his family. His wife seemed familiar to him, but he couldn’t plant from where. He knew she hadn’t been to a rally, otherwise he would be able to place the exact location he knew her from.

    She had blonde hair that was already in the process of greying, their young son having the same blond hair as his mother.

    The parents had sent their boy out to d some chores in the barn while they helped Milo get settled in. That’s when he finally figured out where he recognized the mother from.

    “We wanted to thank your group for helping our daughter.” The woman’s voice was soft spoken and seemed to be on the brink of tears. “Cecilia didn’t want to marry Jordan, she would have rather marry one of the cows in the field before she married him and she made it known at every opportunity, but because Jordan’s parents are the neighbors, there wasn’t much we could do about it without risking everything we’ve built our lives on.”

    The man kept a cold face, but he seemed genuine enough. “When she ran off with your group, we were proud. Your group won us over during the rallies before the wedding, then when Jordan left her at the altar to start trouble, she told me she was gonna join your group if she didn’t die first.”

    Milo was at a loss for words. The two were obviously upset that their daughter was gone without a trace, but they did seem proud of her choices. “Cecilia saved our leader’s life that night and she might have just kept my sister from losing her mind because of that. She’s due to have her own kid sometime soon and I think hearing the news of her husband getting beaten to death in an alley would have been too much for her. Your daughter is a wonderful woman and I know the group is already warming up to her.”

    They had worked on preparing the guest bedroom for him, along with a meal and whatever else he might need.

    He stopped the pair on their way out of the guest bedroom. “You guys are taking a huge risk by keeping me here, so I’ll do whatever I can to help you while I’m here. Wherever I’m needed, just let me know what I can do and I’ll make it a point to get it done.”

    The man simply nodded in response as they left the room.

    Elizabeth Kennedy

    March 29th, 2189 was the day she had sent out the emails that reached Ethan. He seemed to remember the day a year later and was a bit more chipper than usual, despite having spent most of the year back with Onyx.

    Horatio had taken a few guesses on when the baby would be due, pinning April 14th as the due date. Kyle loved the idea of having his grandchild born on his son’s birthday. In fact, Kyle loved the idea of having a grandchild in general. He had sworn to Elizabeth that he was going to give it his all to support the baby if she ever needed him to, which is a promise that many other group members had made.

    Francine and Lecia had been trying to keep her calm throughout the entire pregnancy and even told her they would be there for the birth, which was embarrassing, but a huge weight off her shoulders. She trusted them to be there the most since they both had their own child and had already experienced it.

    She spent most of the 29th of March talking to Ethan and seeing how he was thinking of the group a year later, along with what he would expect from the group in the future.

    She already had a feeling the baby was going to be born early, but she only expected it to be a week early.

    Elizabeth didn’t know what to consider it when she went into labor a little over two weeks before her due date. It was concerning, even if it was just a small time, but Francine and Horatio assured her that everything would be fine.

    She believed them until her contractions became stronger. She was thankful that Chelsea wasn’t around, otherwise she’d have to feel everything when the pain she was already in was far too much for her.

    Horatio told her that because of how quickly she was progressing, she should have the baby by the end of that day.

    That was the guess that he got right.

    He delivered the baby with Francine and Lecia’s help before the sun had even gone down.

    They got him cleaned up and back to Elizabeth shortly after, giving her a run down of what she would need to do to make sure she and the baby would both be at their best. They told her that they’d occasionally be checking up on them through the night and that once morning came, they would tell Kyle.

    It was when they left the room, leaving her with the baby that Elizabeth realized that she already knew what he would be like when he was a bit older, but she’d never gotten the chance to see Whitlock as a baby. It only made the experience a bit more scary for her.

    Though what made her fear the most was knowing that Marshal wasn’t going to be around for much of Whitlock’s first year of life.

    Leona tried to help in the one way she knew how, but it didn’t work out.

    Leona - One month back.

    She didn’t do anything, instead she stayed in place as the firing squad lined up their shots perfectly.

    The young woman who was once in front of her looked at her, waiting for a command. “What do we do?”

    The rest of her people looked to her, their fear more prominent than any emotion.

    Leona met Isaac’s eyes, finally coming to the conclusion that he had the upper hand. “We’re not going to do anything. We came here with the intention of being peaceful and that’s just what we’re going to do.”

    Isaac looked back to the man Leona didn’t know, but had deduced his position as a general. He shared a few looks with the general, Luke, and Zachary before the general stepped forward and threw his left hand in the air. “Take aim!”

    Leona could feel a shift in her people’s attitude as they began to panic. “Leona, you can’t let this happen. They’re going to kill us!”

    “You joined the group with the knowledge that it could kill you. You came with me today knowing that we wouldn’t be armed and that we had a fair chance of being slaughtered like animals as soon as we arrived.” Leona didn’t break eye contact with Isaac as she continued on. “We picked a cause to die for, picked a group to live on after us, and now it’s time to face the end. It’s how our lives have to go.”

    “It isn’t how it has to go, just give him the location of the Voyagers, please.” One of her people grabbed her wrist, pleading to her.

    “We’re no better than the people we fight if we give up our allies. The Voyagers and those who stayed back at the base have a higher potential. They’ll put an end to this for good.”

    Leona continued to listen to the pleas of her people as the general threw his hand down. “Fire!”

    She stood in place as her people panicked to try to find some way to escape, each of them collapsing one by one as a shot hit them.

    She waited to be hit as gunfire went off all around her.

    She waited until the general called off his men.

    Then she looked around, seeing the bodies of her people scattered all around her on the floor, blood surrounding them.

    For once, she felt completely hopeless. She looked to Isaac with tears building in her eyes. “Why would you leave me alive?”

    He didn’t answer, but ordered one of the guards to arrest Leona.

    Leona - Present time.

    She had been placed in a room with Marshal and woman that she learned was Elizabeth’s mother, Leah.

    Leah was hostile towards the both of them, never letting either of them getting close enough to remove her chip.

    She wouldn’t listen to either of them whenever they tried to remind her about who she was or her kids, but she swore up and down that if they kept pushing some fake story onto her then there would be problems.

    Leona came up with a plan to remove the chip, which Marshal didn’t approve of and refused to be part of it.

    His refusal probably bettered Leona’s chances, so she wasn’t concerned about it.

    The plan was to wait until night time and remove the chip whenever she slept, by the biggest problem with the plan was finding a time she would sleep.

    She was always on edge and barely trusted Leona and Marshal enough to sleep while they were awake, so she’d wait until they slept before she would go to sleep.

    In the middle of the month, Leona had woken up in the middle of the night one night and noticed Leah was asleep.

    There was glass on the floor from one of the many times she attempted to strike Leona or Marshal because they got to close to her.

    Leona moved from her corner of the room, crawling to avoid waking Leah up. She grabbed a shard of glass and crawled to Leah’s bedside, slowly getting off the ground and positioning herself so Leah couldn’t take the glass from her.

    As quick as she could, Leona jammed the shard of glass between Leah’s neck and the chip, pulling as hard as she could.

    Before Leah could scream, Marshal rushes over and covered her mouth, helping Leona pry the chip off. “You’re going to get us all killed, you know that?”

    “I would choose death over staying in this room with someone who’s chipped.” Leona gave a final tug, yanking the chip off of Leah’s neck and throwing it onto the ground with the shard of glass.

    She stomped on the chip and she and Marshal went back to bed before any guard could enter the room.

    When they woke up, they saw Leah looked confused and almost scared. She looked them both in the eyes before she said anything. “Who are you two? Where am I?”

    Leona glanced over to Marshal expecting him to answer. “My name is Marshal Kennedy, that’s Leona. We’re leaders of our own groups, one of which you used to be part of. We’re all in Onyx custody and they had you chipped before last night.”

    “How long before last night?”

    Leona noticed his hesitation on answering the question. “Twenty-five years at most, we aren’t really sure when you ended up in custody.”

    Leah started to panic, looking at the room around her. “My kids, what happened to my kids? Are they still alive?”

    Marshal nodded, which seemed to ease Leah a bit. “Milo was part of a rally group, he’s on his own right now but I’m sure he’s doing fine. Elizabeth is back at the base, which is about two days worth of walking from here. I can tell you all about it later, but right now Leona and I need your help.”

    Even though it was Leona’s first time hearing this, she gave Leah an affirmative nod to encourage her to help with whatever Marshal was planning. “Only if you swear to tell me what I’ve missed with my family, my group, and the state of Onyx.”

    “Deal.” He moves to go through the nightstand next to Leah’s bed, pulling out a notepad and pencil. He picked a spot in the middle of the room before sitting on the ground and motioning them over.

    Leah and Leona moved to look over his shoulder and watch what he was writing. ‘I can’t tell you the exact location or plan. The room has at least three cameras that I’ve seen. There’s one pointing at the door from above the lamp, another pointing at Leah’s bed from the corner I’ve taken, and another hidden inside the lamp shade to try and monitor whatever someone writes since it’s the only flat surface in the room to use a notepad on.

    Leona and Leah looked at the corner of the room, noticing the small camera that had been placed in a shaded spot that made it difficult to be noticed.

    Marshal went back to writing when he knew they were looking again. ‘Leah, it’s going to upset you to find out through writing, but the men at Onyx have seriously done you wrong. They use you as an object, purely because you can’t say no to them as a captive. They’ve been doing it since you first arrived and they still do it and there’s only one way to make it stop.

    Leona looked over to Leah to see her face had gone pale as she continued watching what he wrote. ‘The next time someone comes in during the night to attempt such a thing, we need to take them over. Once we do that, we can take their keys and weapons and leave headquarters. Leona and I can do it, we just need to know you’ll cooperate with the plan.

    “Where would we go?” Leah whispered.

    Back to the Voyagers. Leona can go back to her group and we can make a course of action from there.

    “And what if we don’t do it?” Leona tried to keep her voice down, knowing that Onyx cameras picked up sound and video.

    Then we have to wait for Elizabeth or your group to do something. It’s not ideal to just wait it out because having Elizabeth come to the city after the baby is a huge gamble. If she brings the baby with her, she can’t die but she’s more likely to be caught. If she leaves it at home, she’s got a smaller chance of getting caught but she would stay dead if something happened.

    Leona paused, a frown on her face. “The gene really doesn’t go that far?” He shook his head. “What if she brings the baby close enough to still have the abilities?”

    Because we don’t know how close that is. We don’t know where Chelsea will be whenever Elizabeth decides to act, so that could be another setback. If your group de-

    Marshal stopped writing and tore the paper off the notepad, putting the notepad and pencil back into the nightstand and the torn piece of paper into his pocket. He stood up and dusted himself off. “Act normal.”

    As they all stood up, they heard someone messing with the lock on the door.

    The second it unlocked, Luke Lowell stormed into the room with his eyes shining red as he confronted Marshal. He stopped just an inch or two away from him, which made it seem like he was there for a fight. “Why did you remove the chip?”

    Marshal took a step back and Luke immediately took a step forward. “You know I’m not going to fight you.”

    Luke didn’t wait for Marshal to get any further, he took a hold around his neck and kept a tight grip. “I asked you why you removed the chip. You haven’t cooperated with anything and I’m over Zachary postponing your execution just because he wants to stay in your good graces. It won’t matter much when you’re dead and your group comes back to the city.”

    “I disconnected the chip!” Leona moved to grab hold of Luke’s arm to help in whatever way she could, only to be pushed back by Luke’s free hand.

    “The camera can show exactly who did it and it’s no surprise that he had the bigger part in it when he’s the only one of you who knows how to disconnect a chip.”

    Leona and Leah shared a look of concern before Leona ran out of the open door, workers immediately calling after her as she ran down the hall.

    She ran into the conference room, finding Chelsea in the middle of a meeting. “You need to help, he’s going to kill him and I can’t stop it.”

    Chelsea quickly left her seat and ran out of the room, following Leona back to Leah’s room where some guards were now blocking the way in.

    She separated from Leona and pushed her way through the crowd, forcing herself into the room.

    Luke had dropped Marshal by then, but was still as physical as before. Chelsea watched him kick Marshal before turning to say something to Leah, only to meet Chelsea’s eyes.

    “Get away from him.” He stayed put, as if he was challenging her. “Luke, I said to get away. You already know you’re on thin ice for similar behavior and that you have no authority over people who’ve been arrested. Your job is to be out there searching for people, not beating up the ones who can’t do anything.”

    Leona was pushed through the crowd and back into the room by Isaac, who made the crowd disperse before Zachary came in and then shutting the door behind them. “Do you understand how reckless and unprofessional your behavior has been?” Isaac looked furious with Luke. “Because you decided to provoke someone who has already chosen death over life, you almost allowed another two to escape. Is your personal hatred towards him strong enough that you’re willing to risk your whole career just to harm him?”

    “We don’t have time for this, we need to get a doctor up here.” Zachary shook his head as he looked at Marshal. “He didn’t just want to harm him, he wanted to kill him.” He then looked back up at Luke, crossing his arms. “I want to know why. Is it because he and Elizabeth betrayed your trust? Or do you blame him for killing your last partner?” He paused, not getting an answer, just the same angry glare that he always got. “Whatever the reason, you’re not allowed back in this room. Chelsea, you need to adjust the locks and I’m only going to ask you to prioritize it once.”

    “What about the chip?” Chelsea looked at Leah. “What about her?”

    “They’ve moved numerous times since she was chipped, she’s useless to us now and a completely waste of a chip.” Isaac opened the door once more, waiting until Zachary, Chelsea, and Luke left the room before he left himself, shutting the door behind him.

    He didn’t lock it, which told the three of them that they planned on sending somebody back in.

    Leona and Leah went to Marshal’s side. He seemed more freaked out than he seemed hurt, which was both a good and bad thing. “I’m starting to understand why Joseph wanted to stay in the shadows.”

    “Why’s that?” Leona thought the only thing they could do was keep him talking.

    “I get beat up every single time I come into the city. I’ve nearly died to Luke twice now when I’ve gone into the city and I’ve already died on my own once.”

    “I don’t think Elizabeth told me what happened with that, why don’t you?”

    He sighed, sitting himself against the wall. “It’s a long, stupid story. We were trying to go into the main building at our base through the roof and Alyssa slipped while Vincent and I were already halfway down, so I told them to let go of me and I got impaled. That’s the run down of it.”

    The door opened once more, a blonde woman coming straight to the three of them. They recognized her because of her outfit of a purple skirt and white blouse, which was an outfit assigned to Lyla Richardson.

    She kneeled down as she looked over Marshal, seeming disappointed. “You don’t have to keep causing trouble while you’re in custody, don’t you know?”

    “If you and Luke consider doing absolutely nothing wrong to be causing trouble then remind to stay out of your way.”

    The two had some small talk while Lyla looked over him. “Everything seems normal, except for a few ribs. Looks like you’re finally getting used to getting beat up by Lowell.”

    “Then everything is going according to plan, expect an uprise within hours.”

    She chuckled, heading back to the door. “Good luck orchestrating that from in here.”

    Once she left and locked the door behind her, Marshal took the piece of paper out of his pocket and looked to Leah. “To refresh, we need to get out of here as soon as possible. Our options are this plan and getting out possibly within days or waiting for Elizabeth or the Hunters, which we don’t know how long either of those will take.”

    [Agree to the plan]
    [Wait for Elizabeth or the Hunters]

  • edited July 2018

    [Agree to the plan]

    Elizabeth and her group are going to be busy with the baby. Plus, she and her group at the hotel don't even know he is in danger. Leonas group probably has no idea what happened to her or where she currently is. There is no telling how long any help will come or if any comes at all. Despite the risks, I think the best thing to do is carefully plan and escape now.

    5.6 Over the past two months since the run in with Luke, Milo had wandered back into New York. He tried to avoid the areas t

  • [Agree to the plan]

    5.6 Over the past two months since the run in with Luke, Milo had wandered back into New York. He tried to avoid the areas t

  • 5.7

    Atlanta had by far been the most welcoming place that the group had been.

    They had been offered a place to stay for the night and a meal for free at a local restaurant.

    After some deliberation, the group felt safe enough to stay in the hotel and take up the restaurant’s offer.

    Once they got to the restaurant, the owner explained that many of the business owners saw logic in what Alyssa had said at her rallies and they wanted to help in whatever way they could.

    They warned the group of some places to avoid if they wanted to stay away from confrontation and keep their people safe.

    They also advised the group to stop by and meet a man named Conrad before they left Atlanta, giving them an address and showing them where it would be on a map.

    They left the group alone for a bit, only returning to let Alyssa know that there was a phone call waiting for her.

    Cecilia went with her to the manager’s office so Alyssa didn’t have to go alone. She looked at the number that the phone displayed, a small look of concern crossing her. “That’s a New York area code. Are you sure you want to take it?”

    Alyssa looked over the number herself before shrugging. “If it was really anything bad then they would have tried to cover their number before they called.” Cecilia gave an unsure nod before Alyssa picked up the phone. “Hello?”

    “Alyssa, you’re not going to believe it. They’re starting to televise the rallies on certain news outlets and they’re getting away with it by claiming it’s unbiased material. Your rallies are already reaching places you haven’t even been. It’s repairing the opinion of people that may have trusted us even less because of Luke.” Alyssa immediately knew it was Milo, just because of his excitement about the rallies and public opinion.

    Cecilia cupped her hands in front of her, mouthing a sentence to Alyssa. ‘Who is it?

    “I told you it wasn’t anything bad, it’s Milo.”

    Why is Milo in New York?

    “I’m not too sure.” Alyssa turned back to the phone. “Milo, Cecilia wants to know why you’re in New York.”

    “That’s a good question. I’m staying with Cecilia’s family, let her know they’re all okay and the farm isn’t falling apart.”

    “He’s with your family and everything’s fine over there.” She saw Cecilia lighten up as she took a breath of relief. Alyssa’s mind started racing with questions, most of them questions that she couldn’t ask in front of Cecilia. “Everything’s okay with Cecilia’s family but you’re safe, right?”

    “Of course. I haven’t backed out of a promise yet and it wouldn’t really be in my interest or yours to back out on that one.” He paused. “There was a problem last month, some officer showed up to question Cecilia’s parents over Jordan’s death and her disappearance but I wasn’t around when he was, so I don’t think he knows I’m here.”

    “Have you ever heard of someone named Conrad in Atlanta?”

    “I remember the name. He collects dirt and claims that the Earth tells him secrets. I’ve never met him, so I don’t know if it’s true but other people believe it and claim he’s the real thing.”

    “Are you sure we’re thinking of the same person?”

    “Not really, there’s bound to be tons of people named Conrad in Atlanta.”

    Alyssa sighed, leaning against the manager’s desk. “I hate to say it, but I hope you’re thinking of the wrong Conrad. I’ve never even heard of a dirt collector before, how am I supposed to talk to one?”

    “You just have to seem interested in hearing what the Earth has to say, he’ll tell you his interpretation and that’ll be it.”

    “No offense, but I feel that Elizabeth would be more suited for this.”

    He chucked on the other end of the line. “You’re right, but it’s not like you can call on her to do it for you. Cecilia might be able to, though I think it’s something you should try for yourself.”

    “What if I mess it up or offend him?”

    “Conrad and the Voyagers share a similar view on accepting offenses. Not everybody is going to love what you do, but as long as you love it then there’s no harm to it. Lucky for you, Conrad loves the dirt.”

    “This is absolutely ridiculous, but we’ll see what he has to say tomorrow.”

    “You should probably wear something white, rumor has it that he likes people who are willing to get their best colors dirty. If you don’t have anything, talk to Samantha about making Cecilia’s old dress a bit more casual and use that.”

    “I’m not even going to ask how you know this much about Conrad when you only said the name was familiar, but thanks for the advice.” Alyssa sighed pushing herself off the desk. “I should probably get back to dinner. I assume you’ll find a way to keep in contact?”

    “If I can then I will. It took a lot just to find this number, but I’ve got a feeling things are only going to get easier for all of us. Let me know what Conrad tells you.”

    After that, Alyssa hung up and went back to dinner with Cecilia, letting the others know what Milo said.

    Samantha worked on Cecilia’s dress through the night and the next rally, having it ready for Alyssa at the end of the day.

    She changed and they went to the location they’d been given for Conrad.

    It was a small cabin that was pretty far off the road, which was a little unsettling to the group.

    A tan man with grey hair was waiting for them on the porch. He was wearing a plain green shirt with blue jeans and boots, all of his clothes seeming dirty.

    He stepped off the porch once they pulled in and parked, waiting for them to come out of the van.

    Cyrus got out first, Alyssa and the others following after.

    There was a slight moment of awkward silence before Alyssa waved to the man. “Are you Conrad?” He nodded. “I’m Alyssa Kowalska, a representative for the Voyagers. We’ve been told to visit you.”

    Conrad looked her up and down before walking further into the land, expecting Alyssa to follow him.

    She looked at the group before shrugging. “You guys should stay in the van. If it’s a setup, we don’t all want to get caught.”

    The rest of the group got back into the van as Alyssa went after Conrad. “I’m impressed you’ve decided to wear something white. It shows you’re willing to get your best clothes dirty to share the Earth’s secrets.” He slowed down and pointed at a spot in the grass before kneeling. “This is the best spot for your energy, join me.”

    Alyssa kneeled as well, looking over the patch of grass and noting that it looked exactly as the rest of the grass did. “What would be best for hearing the secrets?”

    “Make a bowl with your hands.” She did as he said while Conrad dug a small hole and scooped out some dirt. He held onto it for a minute before splitting what he had into two and passing half of it to Alyssa. “Close your eyes and focus.”

    Alyssa closed her eyes, reminding herself that she had to be wary of Conrad because she didn’t know him.

    “You’re troubled by my presence because you don’t know if you can trust me.” Conrad paused. “Aside from that, you’re concerned about the state of your rallies. You’ve generally been a nervous person lately, haven’t you?”

    “I guess, it hasn’t been easy taking over a job that I wasn’t prepared for.”

    Conrad stayed silent, which made Alyssa fear she had said the wrong thing. “Your friend visited me once years ago when he came through Atlanta. He’s never been the type to make decisions that he hasn’t thought over thoroughly and I didn’t hear of a potential time where he would be. He chose you because you’re strong in your own way. You’ve had other people protecting you because you’re not strong physically, but you’re the only one in your remaining group that can handle the toll that leadership brings on mentally. You’ve seen your hardships and gotten through them as they came to you. There’s only more difficulties to come as you stay with this group but you won’t leave them. Why not?”

    “They haven’t been brainwashed to believe they’re doing the right thing and there’s only one belief that’s common with all of them and that’s the desire to live free. They’re all good people in their own ways and they need me right now.”

    “The Earth tells me your mother was a free spirit, just as you are. She’s your motivation for almost everything you’ve done at this point, is it true?”

    “Yes.” Alyssa took a deep breath. “She had the beliefs that most Voyagers do, but she was sick and already breaking Onyx rules by not reporting her own illness. She thought it would endanger me if she reported her illness or went to the Voyagers.”

    “But you’ve found a new motivation. You-” Conrad went quiet, the sound of the dirt hitting the ground immediately following his silence. “Your people back home are in trouble. Don’t return before you’re expected or you’ll find yourself in the same trouble they’re in.”

    Alyssa opened her eyes to see Conrad stand up and start a walk back to his cabin, leaving her in the grass.

    Leona

    Leah had agreed to Marshal’s plan, which had all three of them on edge.

    Nobody came around now that Leah had been unchipped with the exception of Isaac, who came around with a certain execution date for Marshal.

    As the day drew closer with no chance at escaping, Marshal eventually admitted to the two that while he agreed to die for the group, it wasn’t something he wanted to do.

    They agreed to act whenever the next opportunity presented itself after hearing the rumor that after Marshal was executed, Leona would be next. They refused to do anything during the day due to how many people would be in the building, knowing it wouldn’t be worth the risk.

    Because Luke no longer had access to the room, security was now required to check in on the three every once in a while. The security was how the three found out Leona would be next.

    There was one guard who came in particularly late that Leona remembered from when she made a stand in the lobby. She knew who all he shot and killed because he boasted about it the first night he came into the room.

    The problem they’d run into with wanting to attack him specifically was that he came in around three in the morning, which is when everyone was asleep. Leona only knew when he was there because she was closest to the door and it usually woke her up when someone entered or left the room.

    She noticed he mostly came in to adjust the cameras on the occasion that somebody messed with them.

    The night before Marshal’s scheduled execution, Leona tampered with all the cameras in the room and tried her best to stay up the entire night while waiting for the guard to come in.

    He unlocked the door at three, exactly when Leona expected him to.

    There were some cameras he couldn’t reach because Leona and Marshal were in the way, but the second he turned his back to her to fix the lampshade’s camera, Leona tried putting him in a chokehold.

    She didn’t really understand why she thought it was a good idea, especially after he just tossed her to the side as if she was weightless.

    He reached for his gun as Leona reminded herself that the door was still unlocked. She jumped for the door and threw it open, running out into the hall.

    “We’ve got an attempted escape on the fourth floor, I need backup as soon as I can get it.” The last thing she heard was the guard making a call on his radio before he dropped two items and started chasing her.

    She saw the elevator numbers going down, which meant somebody was already on the way and she had to take the stairs.

    She ran into the stairwell and blocked the door before running downstairs and getting grabbed by another guard.

    The guard dragged her back upstairs and started to unblock the door before a gunshot went off behind the door, making the guard stop messing with the lock. He reached for the radio on his shirt, pulling it to his face. “Thompson, check in.”

    “You’re pretty quick, but you’re not quick enough. Go ahead and open the door.” Marshal responded on the radio, which relieved Leona but visibly upset the guard.

    “Tell me the damage first.”

    “Thompson’s dead, the elevator is stopped, and I’m the only one out here. Also, I’m ready to surrender since I already got what I wanted.”

    Leona could feel the guard’s breathing quickening as he reached for the door handle. “Whatever weapon you have, I better hear it drop the second I open the door.”

    Marshal didn’t respond but the guard unlocked the door, cracking it open. The two heard something metal drop.

    The guard pushed the door open, shoving Leona out of the stairwell first. He did it to make sure Marshal wasn’t lying about being disarmed and he wasn’t going to fire at the first person he saw.

    Leona got pushed far enough to where she could look down the hallway. In the hallway, she saw three guard’s bodies that had their guns taken from them. She saw another gun nearby on the ground. She didn’t know where Leah and Marshal were, but she knew they likely had weapons.

    She turned back to the guard, noticing that the elevator had been stuck by someone jamming a wedge between the doors.. “There’s nothing down here, he probably went back to the room.”

    The guard nodded and stepped out of the stairwell. He went to Thompson’s body to confirm that he had no pulse. The second he raised his head and looked down the hallway, a shot rang out and the guard slumped over Thompson’s body.

    Leona looked down the hall to see Marshal jump down from the ceiling and pocket the gun he had, then call down the hall. “We’re good to go.”

    Leah left the room, catching up with Marshal before he went to Leona.

    They walked past Leona as if nothing happened. “Those other two guards, what happened?”

    Marshal kneeled next to the two guards, searching for a pair of keys. “Those two down the hall were in the elevator. Thompson threw his gun and radio down when he went to chase you and I took the gun. The other two guards showed up right as I picked it up and immediately threatened to shoot me, so I shot them. That’s when your guard radioed in and I thought he heard the gunshots, so I just owned up to it.”

    He found a pair of keys and grabbed them, quickly getting off the ground and going to the stairwell. “Where were you hiding when you shot the last one?”

    “There was a loose ceiling panel so I pushed it back and climbed into the ceiling.”

    “How did you stop the elevator?”

    “I didn’t, Leah did.”

    Leona looked to Leah, seeing a nod. “There’s a button that opens the doors in case of emergencies and the elevator won’t move if the doors are open even an inch. I pressed the button while the elevator was going down and put a door stop in between the two doors when they were closing.”

    “I’m starting to see where Elizabeth gets her outlandish ideas.” Leona quickly realized that Elizabeth was the last person she should insult while she was with Leah and Marshal. “No offense to either of you or Elizabeth.”

    “I have to admire your attempt at covering yourself.” Once they made it to the bottom floor, Leah stopped Leona before they left the stairwell. She handed her the gun she’d taken from one of the guards. “You should probably take this. I don’t have much experience with guns and I’d prefer to keep one out of my hands.”

    Leona took the gun from her and the two followed Marshal out of the stairwell.

    Elizabeth Kennedy

    “We need to step up our game. If we aren’t aggressive then we die, there’s no alternative.” Leona was furious when she returned home. “My people died to keep all of you safe and the only thing I can request from you guys is that you don’t let it be for nothing.”

    “What can we do that’ll make things better for your group?” Marshal and Joseph had immediately started talking with Leona about forming an official alliance, rather than what they’d already been doing.

    Leona had been pacing the room, stopping in front of Elizabeth. “You never shut down the system at the bunker. You-”

    “I don’t know if the system is going to work, it’s been idle for over a year now.” Elizabeth scoffed. “We don’t know if there’s something else in the bunker now that we’re gone, we don’t know if Onyx has eyes on it now and I just can’t leave here.”

    “Jade has had her eyes on it and she told me that nobody has been there for a few months. That’s not to say they haven’t set up cameras, but if you’re quick enough then you can get in and get out before Onyx gets there.” Leona paused. “If you’re worried about the baby, now you have Marshal and your mom back. I would agree that it would be different if it was just Kyle, but I can’t see any reason that you can’t leave him alone for an hour just to get one thing done.”

    “I can see multiple reasons. First, I haven’t been cleared to go anywhere. Second, Kyle and Marshal have no idea what they’re doing and you’ve got no idea how easily babies stress my mom out. That’s not to mention that she has no idea where she is or who a majority of these people are. Third, the baby’s only a month old. If I were cleared and he were any older, I’d agree to it but I’m still saying no.”

    Leona looked to Marshal for help. “If you’re really concerned about any of those things, there’s a way around them. You can take Horatio and Ethan as a way against you not being cleared and sending you alone. You may be right about my dad and I not having any idea about what we’re doing, but Francine and Lecia are here and I don’t intend on sending them anywhere else. They’ve raised their own kids in a similar environment, they know what they’re doing.” He paused. “If Whitlock were a normal baby, I’d agree that a month is too young to be left alone but he’s not a normal baby, you already know this and you know his limits are a reflection of your own.”

    “No offense, but that’s a terrible idea.” Joseph crossed his arms and furrowed his eyebrows. “You’re really going to send Ethan with your wife?”

    Marshal nodded. “Yeah, I think it’s a good idea for the same reason you think it’s a bad one. Eris said he killed Luke’s partner and if he really did do it, he’s the one to send in the slim chance that Onyx does have eyes on the bunker. He has no reason to attack Elizabeth or Horatio, but he’d fail to do it if they’re both there and alert.”

    “I’ll pitch in and send my two best people. Jade and Bees have both been trained in hand-to-hand combat and can take anyone down in a matter of seconds if they have to. Jade is also trained in hostage negotiation.” Leona seemed to calm down a bit as Marshal took her side.

    “How can you expect me to feel safe with people who don’t even give their real names?”

    “I haven’t given you my real name and I’ve only killed you once.”

    “You also made the promise to keep trying to kill me, that doesn’t change anything.” Elizabeth sighed, heading for the door. “I need to go check on the baby, so if you’ll excuse me.”

    Leona, Joseph, and Marshal shared a moment of silence after she left before Marshal went back to their room to talk with her alone. “Elizabeth, she just wants you to get into the camera records to collect whatever Onyx hasn’t manipulated or gotten rid of.”

    “But why should I? What do we benefit from this?”

    “She’s only going to agree to alliance if you do this, that’s what we gain from you doing this. She’s pretty confident that you’ll be safe since she’s willing to send her two best people and that confidence from her tells me that you should do it.”

    “Are you telling me this as my leader or my husband?” If there was one thing Elizabeth hated about Marshal being the leader of the group, it was that he had a different way of acting while he was around her and while he was around the group. She usually couldn’t tell the two acts apart.

    “Both. I’m almost certain you can get this done within an hour and be back without a scratch.”

    [Accept and guarantee Leona’s alliance]
    [Refuse and forfeit Leona’s alliance]

  • [Accept and guarantee Leona's alliance]
    I think she has to do this. Her future vision showed that they needed Leona's alliance to defeat Onyx.

    5.7 Atlanta had by far been the most welcoming place that the group had been. They had been offered a place to stay for the

  • “I haven’t given you my real name and I’ve only killed you once.”

    You know, I briefly had to imagine how this sentence would look like standing on its own, completely out of the context of the story and that gave me a legit chuckle. Like, oh great, only once, well, thanks a lot, awfully nice :D

    [Accept and guarantee Leona’s alliance]

    While I do sense that it won't be as easy as Marshal claims (and probably believes) it to be, that something unexpected will come up to make things harder, I would like to have this alliance and believe it to be worth the risk.

    5.7 Atlanta had by far been the most welcoming place that the group had been. They had been offered a place to stay for the

  • While I do sense that it won't be as easy as Marshal claims (and probably believes) it to be

    I’ll be honest, there’s a huge difference between what Marshal and Elizabeth consider easy. From what we’ve seen, Marshal typically just resorts to incapacitating a threat while Elizabeth prefers to work from a distance.

    That being said, his easy could be a whole challenge for her. Though, the job is in Elizabeth’s talents. Maybe it’ll be an even match.

    “I haven’t given you my real name and I’ve only killed you once.” You know, I briefly had to imagine how this sentence wou

  • 5.8

    Elizabeth agreed to go back to the bunker once Horatio and Ethan also agreed. The night before they went, Filip also offered to go.

    “It’s going to be fine, you’ll be in and out before you know it.” While Marshal constantly tried to reassure her about the decision, she knew better than to lure herself into a false hope that nothing would go wrong.

    She, Ethan, Filip, and Horatio went to Leona’s base early in the morning to meet with Jade and Bees.

    They didn’t get to talk to Leona before leaving, but the two women seemed decent enough.

    “Do any of you have a plan?” Jade had waited until they were already on the way to the bunker before she asked anything.

    “Yeah, Leona told us you would have a plan.”

    After a shared moment of silence, Elizabeth sighed. “No, there’s no plan. I just need to get to the lab and depending on how Onyx has updated their security, it either won’t take long or it’ll take days.”

    “How do you expect to get things done without a plan?”

    “I’ve never really needed a plan, things just happen.”

    “You were in Onyx custody once, right? How did you get out?”

    “I died, there’s no special story behind it.”

    Jade went silent for a minute, a look of shock on her face. “What do you mean no special story behind dying?”

    “If you want a story on escape, you should talk to Marshal or Leona. He’s been in custody twice now and as far as I know, Leona has been in custody once but she orchestrated the quarantine breakout.” Horatio was the one driving and since Filip decided to join them, the car was a bit crowded. “Ethan was in custody as well. Elizabeth has avoided staying in one place by dying not once but twice.”

    “Most people only die once.” Bees didn’t seem as shocked at the news as Jade was. “Are you one of the test subjects?” Elizabeth nodded, sparking another question from her. “And your son is as well?”

    “I suppose that’s what you could refer to it as.”

    They got to know each other a little better on the way to the bunker, before they agreed that silence would be better once they reached the bunker.

    Elizabeth stopped Ethan before they went in. “You remember the journal you found on your first night here?” He nodded. “It’s somewhere in Marshal’s old room and I need you to find it.”

    The lights flickered on as soon as they entered the kitchen, revealing the bunker to have gathered plenty of dust since they’d last seen it.

    Ethan split up from the group once they entered the bunker, Filip and Horatio quickly splitting up soon after to go into Joseph’s old room and grab some medicine they thought might be useful.

    Jade and Bees followed Elizabeth to the lab, giving her the device Leona wanted the footage on. “What exactly does she want?”

    Jade took a folded piece of paper out of her pocket and gave it to Elizabeth. “She told us to not look at it and that we couldn’t be around while you got all of it.”

    Elizabeth took it as an order to wait until they were out of the room before looking at it. Once they left, she unfolded it to see that Leona had been watching them for a lot longer than she previously thought.

    Leona wanted footage from the day Luke and his partner had snuck into the bunker, she wanted footage of what happened in the bar with Chelsea, footage of what happened with Marshal and Milo, footage of the quarantine breakout, footage of the way Onyx slaughtered her people when they attempted to make a peaceful stand, and footage of the night she, Marshal, and Leah escaped.

    Some of the instances were known to Elizabeth, others were things she hadn’t heard of yet. She already knew where to get a few of them, but she also knew she’d have to do some searching for the ones she hadn’t seen yet.

    She used the computer to gather what she already knew, transferring it to the device before starting a search for the three she didn’t know of.

    She figured at least one of them would be in a specific folder regarding Luke’s partner, which Onyx had made after her murder. She opened all the files she could, quickly finding one that looked odd to her.

    It was from her body camera. The footage was blurry and Elizabeth couldn’t tell if it was because of the camera or the weather. In a matter of seconds, a light brown blur struck Luke’s partner, causing her to go down instantly. About a minute passed before anything else happened. The next thing Elizabeth saw was Ethan on the screen, sighing before he picked up the body.

    “Ethan didn’t kill her…” Elizabeth started transferring the video to the device before thinking about who it could have been. “She didn’t even have the chance to react, none of us can move that quick.” She looked back at the monitor, rewinding the footage. “But Marie can. She was here, too.”

    She moved on to finding the next video, which was vaguely referred to in the note.

    She found that one by looking up the names Leona mentioned, finding a file that referred to the group that had left for the rallies, along with a few names that Elizabeth didn’t know.

    As soon as she opened the file, she saw why Leona wanted it. The group looked upset, with the exception of Milo. Luke was nearby and a man had a tight hold on a woman that Elizabeth didn’t know. Milo drew a gun on the man and Luke started over towards the group. Milo took a few steps back while keeping an eye on Luke and talking to the man before he let go of the woman’s wrist and got shot by Milo.

    Milo started running and Luke attempted to jump over the man’s body, then getting tackled by Marshal. The rest of the group took off after that.

    After transferring that video, she figured she would find the third video in Onyx’s main records. She spent twenty minutes searching for it without luck. “Everything relating to it is there except the video itself.” She stopped, her attention going straight to one video. “This one was copied. Why would Onyx need a copy of a video they already have?”

    “That’s asking why you would make a copy.” Elizabeth quickly identified the voice as Luke Lowell’s, causing her to get out of her seat and face him. “You’re cornered here, so why don’t you tell me why you’re making copies of classified footage.”

    “I’m not. I’m taking the originals so you don’t have them or the ability to turn it around on us.”

    Luke pointed at the monitor. “You took five originals. The last one has the word copy in it, so what have you done?”

    “Exactly what you said. I took five originals, I didn’t make a copy.”

    He crossed his arms, clearly not believing her. “Let’s talk about you, Elizabeth. Through all this rallying and the escapes, you’ve disappeared until quarantine. I know you were part of that and do you know how? That guard put a gun to your head and you did nothing about it. You relied on somebody else to save your life once again. The very first clip you got, you had to have Marshal save your life by giving himself up. You needed Leona to shoot the guard in quarantine because you knew that if the first shot was drawn back to you, there’d be no chance of your survival. You’re manipulating these people into believing they’re doing the right thing by protecting each other, but what you’re really doing is setting them up for death.”

    “I haven’t been doing anything.” She could tell he was here to arrest her again and she knew the only thing she could do was stall him until the files finished transferring. “What happened to the other people out there?”

    “I didn’t run into them.” He started scanning the room, his eyes glowing red for a brief moment as he stopped and focused on the metal plate that was holding the wires against the wall. “I’ve never been able to get a good look around this place. You’ve got a basic setup, but that’s clever.” He looked back to Elizabeth and uncrossed his arms. “You already know the deal, hands behind your back.”

    She hesitated for a moment before seeing the files had finally transferred to Leona’s device. She pocketed the device before backing away from the system. “I can’t do that. I have a family to go home to.”

    She already knew a fight with Luke wasn’t going to end up going well for her and that she could only pick a degree of how bad it was going to go for her.

    He stayed silent for a minute before grunting. “You know, this is the first time I’ve talked to the real you. I want to know what was going through your head while you were pretending to be a completely different person. What motivated you to keep up the act?”

    “The desire to live, I guess.” She shrugged. “I knew if I was honest with you about who I was then you would tell Isaac and he’d kill me. It was a point with the Voyagers that I had no say in what I did because I was bound to an act by a fucking contract. I wasn’t just hiding from you, I was hiding from everyone around me because I was contractually obligated to live and breath for my work. It’s one of the few things you and I have in common.”

    The door opened for a brief second before Luke jumped in front of it and pushed against it to keep whoever it was out. He pulled his gun out with his free hand and aimed straight for her. “Give your group what you came here for and tell them to leave, then we won’t have a problem.”

    Elizabeth sighed as Luke moved over so she could barely open the door. Filip was on the other side and looked confused as to why she was giving him the device, but he took it without protesting. He didn’t understand why she pointed at the gun he had, but he gave it to her either way. She mouthed a set of words before shutting the door. “Get out of here.

    She shut the door after that, hiding the gun until she pulled it on Luke and fired a single shot. She knew it was going to damage his augmentations and that was the intention. “So much for never firing the first shot.”

    Luke reacted just the way she expected him to, firing a single shot at her. Unlike her, Luke was trained to shoot where it would kill and he hadn’t failed a shot yet.

    She didn’t know if her plan was going to work with Chelsea being in the city and Whitlock being at the motel, but it was her only chance at getting out of that situation.

    After a few moments of darkness, she was able to take a breath of fresh air and open her eyes, slowly easing herself off the ground.

    She already knew it was the garden based on how bright and lively it was. She followed the same path she’d seen multiple times now to see Chelsea holding Whitlock while talking to Karen, all of them aware of Elizabeth’s presence.

    As she got closer, Chelsea looked over to her. The same mischievous look in her blue eyes. “What happened?”

    “I was in the bunker, Luke surprised me and I got shot, the usual at this point.”

    Karen didn’t seemed as happy to see Elizabeth as the other two were, which struck a little fear into her. “You were just barely in the middle of those two when you got shot. Had your son been in his room instead of the dining room or had Chelsea been in Amanda’s workplace instead of the breakroom, you would be permanently dead.” She paused, a frustrated sigh escaping her. “Having three of you isn’t going to make things easier on any of you because what you already knew has expanded.” She then looked at the baby, a look of sadness crossing her in an instant. “He’s going to have it the worst because both of you barely grasp the basic understanding of the gene and it evolves through every generation, so you still wouldn’t have been able to help him.”

    “You seem like you’re rushing this, what’s going on?” Chelsea apparently got the same reading as Elizabeth.

    “I’ve got no idea how long you two are going to be here when there’s a baby in the connection. He could decide that he wants to be home or he wants to be with a specific person and that would cut all three of you out.”

    “So you’re basically telling us to hurry up, right?” Elizabeth questioned, getting a nod in response. “You said the gene evolves with every generation, if Chelsea and I decided to go back to the real world, would his decision overpower both of ours?”

    Karen shook her head. “Not if the both of you agree.”

    That was the last thing she heard from Karen or Chelsea before she woke up in her own bed, Marshal asleep on her left and Whitlock in his bassinet on her right.

    Marshal Kennedy

    Most of the month was spent trying to make the main building habitable once again.

    Having the people from quarantine gave them two new people, but forced them into a housing problem.

    Elizabeth cleaned out Milo’s room and allowed someone else to use it but refused to mess with any other rooms. Joseph took it on himself and explained that he would take them blame for it once they got back but they needed any rooms they could get at the moment.

    Filip had been spending weeks out at a time now, along with a man and a woman that came from quarantine and claimed they were fit to work.

    “How many people are we looking at right now?” It was the same question every time there was a meeting.

    “There’s currently thirty-six people around here. If Leona decides to bring her people here, that’s at least ten more and then waiting for Alyssa’s group come back brings us to exactly fifty-two.” Marshal paused, a sigh escaping him as he looked over the numbers. “It’s a good thing, but we can’t handle all these people.We’re lucky Leona hasn’t made up her mind about bringing her people here because that’s ten less people we need to find a room for.”

    “That’s not even mentioning the high possibility that Alyssa brings more than what you left her with.” Joseph crossed his arms, slouching in his seat.

    Marshal looked across the table at Filip. “I need you to work with Horatio and find two more people who would be willing and able to go scouting, then I need you to talk to Lecia about her estimates before you go out again.”

    Filip and Horatio left without a word to do what they were told.

    To Filip’s left was Ethan, someone Marshal usually had difficulties working with. “If I give you something where you can threaten somebody, will you do it?” Ethan smirked and nodded. “Fine. Go to Leona’s base and find out what she plans on doing through whatever means necessary.”

    Marshal watched Ethan get up and walk away, briefly catching a glimpse at Gregory at the other table, obviously listening in.

    He turned his attention away from Gregory and back to the group in front of him. “Francine, I need your input on what we’re going to do about the kids. Elizabeth isn’t making a decision on it since Whitlock isn’t school-age yet and Lecia is undecided on it. The other two kids are orphans and sick, so this is basically up to you.”

    “Actually, I wanted to bring that up to you. Morgan has said that she wants to stay helping in the kitchen and Greg wanted me to ask you if you could train him.” Francine seemed pretty nervous as she spoke, her voice wavering. “I mean, I understand if you don’t want that and I already told him that you’ve got a lot going on between the group and your family, he understands that.”

    Marshal noticed Joseph sharing the same look of confusion that he had, prompting him to ask what was on his mind. “Train him in what?”

    She cupped her hands to try and stop herself from fiddling with her fingers. “He said he wants to train the way you did as a scout but he doesn’t want to leave the motel yet.”

    He waited until Gregory came around to the table, taking Filip’s spot across from Marshal. “You understand that the training we went through wasn’t easy and it took years, right? There were days that none of us could move afterwards. I’m not trying to dissuade you from doing what you want, I just want you to be aware of that much. Are you absolutely sure you want to do this?”

    “Only if you think it’s a good idea.”

    Francine put her hands in her lap, nodding. “If you don’t think it’s right or it’s not the time then I’m sure I could find someone to teach the kids normal school stuff.”

    [Tell Greg you’ll train him]
    [Tell Francine to find a teacher]

  • [Tell Greg you’ll train him]

    This might be another responsibility for Marshal, but there might be a point in which Greg will need these skills, in the future.

    5.8 Elizabeth agreed to go back to the bunker once Horatio and Ethan also agreed. The night before they went, Filip also offere

  • [Tell Greg you’ll train him]

    5.8 Elizabeth agreed to go back to the bunker once Horatio and Ethan also agreed. The night before they went, Filip also offere

  • 5.9

    After Leona had decided to move her people into the motel, things only switched up even more.

    Most of the group had gotten used to a group of under ten people and it was clear that everyone was being cautious of one another.

    Leona and Marshal didn’t have the option to be cautious of other people, which led to Leona getting sick almost immediately after arriving at the motel and giving complete control to Jade once again.

    Marshal knew about Elizabeth’s run-in with Luke back at the bunker and while he claimed he didn’t think less of anyone else there because of it, he was a bit disappointed in how everything happened.

    Elizabeth told him about how Ethan didn’t kill Luke’s partner and how she suspected it was Marie. He told her to keep it on the downlow and he would talk to the original group once everyone returned.

    A small council had been set up to keep things in some order. It consisted of Marshal, Elizabeth, Joseph, Ethan, Filip, Lecia, Horatio, and Francine. They knew to expect at least Cecilia when Alyssa returned but also knew that there was an extremely likely possibility that Alyssa would indirectly bring along more people.

    Because he was training Gregory now, the council advised Marshal to be honest with him about whatever he asks and if he couldn’t handle the full truth then he wasn’t fit to train.

    There were some things that Marshal wasn’t going to try to teach him because there were better people for the job. He wasn’t big on hunting in general but Cyrus had spent his entire life hunting for food.

    There was one thing that Joseph constantly recommended getting Greg to learn but Elizabeth refused every time because it involved Whitlock. She eventually gave in to their pressuring and agreed to let them use the baby, but she wasn’t happy about it.

    What Joseph recommended was allowing giving the baby to someone on the site and having them hide him somewhere. Gregory would have two options on how to handle it, the first being finding the baby himself and the second being finding out who hid him and making them bring him back.

    Joseph took care of passing Whitlock to someone else so that way Marshal didn’t know who did it either. It only made Elizabeth dislike the plan even more.

    Once Joseph allowed Gregory to go, he went straight to Leona and studied her face for a minute. “Excuse me, I have some questions for you.”

    She looked at Marshal with confusion before looking back to Greg. “Go ahead.”

    He seemed to take note of her reaction. “When was the last time you saw Whitlock?”

    “This morning.” She looked to grow suspicious already. “What’s this about?”

    Greg ignored her question, going straight to asking her another question. “Who was he with when you saw him?”

    She looked down at the table she was seated at. “He was with Leah.”

    “Why did you hesitate on answering that question?” Gregory crossed his arms, still studying her.

    “Because I didn’t remember her name.” Leona looked back up, a slight look of annoyance on her face. “I don’t talk to her and I barely knew her for a month before I got here.”

    Gregory stayed silent for a moment, reminding himself that Leona was pretty forgetful. “Alright, thanks for answering my questions.” He started walking towards the dining hall, waving back to her as they walked away.

    “You know, this would be a lot easier if you just talked to Joseph since he is the one who gave him up.”

    Greg knew Marshal was only saying that because of Elizabeth. “Elizabeth might scare you but she doesn’t scare me. I’m going to do this the way I want to. Think about it, Joseph wouldn’t have given him to somebody that would take him off grounds or somebody that he doesn’t trust. That narrows it down to like six people.”

    “And what if none of those six people have an idea? It’s not always going to be as easy as you think. Not everything is going to work out in your favor unless you fight for it.”

    They went into the dining hall where plenty of people from quarantine had gone to get out of the sun at Horatio’s advice. Most of them didn’t pay much attention to the door opening since they were finally getting used to being around the group.

    Greg stopped in the doorway, scanning the faces at the tables before pointing at a young girl. She was one of the orphans that Elizabeth had been teaching after nobody else stepped up to do it.

    He went around all the tables before stopping behind her and tapping her shoulder. “Kimber, I need your help with something.”

    She turned around and looked a bit afraid once she realized Marshal was with Greg. “Am I in trouble?”

    “No, we just can’t talk in front of all these people.”

    Kimber nodded, shutting her book and getting out of her seat. Greg took them into the kitchen where Morgan and Lecia were, but knew that they wouldn’t be listening in while they had their own things to do. “What are we doing?”

    Greg could already tell that asking Kimber questions would be different from questioning Leona. She would be more honest, but she would ask a lot more questions. “You know Elizabeth’s baby, right?” She nodded, paying complete attention. “Have you seen him today?”

    “Yep. I saw him while your mom was getting ready for lunch.”

    Marshal looked at his watch before crossing his arms. “That’s pretty recent since Francine’s not here but it’s also not lunch yet.”

    Greg looked over at Morgan and Lecia, noticing Morgan looking in their direction. He looked back at Kimber, seeing her waiting for the next question. “Was he with my mom?”

    “No, he was with the doctor. The doctor brought him into the kitchen and your mom left after he came in. I saw the doctor leave but he didn’t have the baby with him when he left.”

    “When did he leave?”

    Kimber shrugged, her shoulders barely touching her short blonde hair. “The clock in the dining hall is still broken so I’m not sure.” She turned to Marshal. “Haven’t people told you about the clock being broken for months?”

    He nodded before backing out of the kitchen. Greg had been told that if Marshal left him somewhere then he needed to stay in the same place unless he was told otherwise.

    He looked at Morgan and Lecia again to see that they were both working again and not paying attention to them. Marshal returned a few minutes later with the clock the Kimber had complained about and two batteries. He gave the clock and batteries to Kimber and told her she could fix it and put it back up when she was done.

    Kimber left the kitchen with the clock in her hands, sparking a look of confusion from Greg. “Why did you do that?”

    Marshal crouched to get on eye level with Greg, lowering his voice. “Kimber said Horatio didn’t have him when he left and so we can assume Horatio either went through the front or the side entrance because Kimber could see both exits from where she was sitting. The back exit is off limits to everyone except the construction crew and there’s no evidence that any of them have been here since the floors are pretty clean and their shoes would have tracked all kinds of things in here.” He looked over at Morgan and Lecia. “Those two have been acting pretty suspicious so that means he’s either here or they know where he is. Kimber needed to a pull a chair over to where the clock was so she’s blocking the closest exit right now.”

    Marshal stood back up, looking over the kitchen. Lecia turned around and put her hands on her hips. “What do you want?”

    “We’re just looking around. Can we look through the cabinets?”

    “No, you can’t.” Lecia seemed to catch Marshal off guard, but it only confirmed their suspicions that Whitlock was in the kitchen.

    “Let us look around and I’ll do inventory this month.”

    “You would think that after being around me for over ten years that you would know it’s impossible to bargain with me.” Lecia smirked and turned to look at what Morgan was doing.

    Marshal led Greg out of the kitchen, immediately running back into Kimber. She pointed at the clock that was now ticking away. “I fixed it! What else can I do?”

    He kneeled in front of her, keeping his voice down to make her think it was super secret. “I’ve got a mission for you. I need you to go in the kitchen and distract Morgan and her mom so Greg and I can find the baby. Do you think you can do it?”

    She nodded, running into the kitchen before Marshal could stand back up.

    They immediately heard her talking in the kitchen, asking about lunch. Greg looked around the doorway seeing that Morgan and Lecia had their backs to the doorway and now was the time they should act.

    He slowly went into the kitchen, sticking close to the cabinets. He noticed that what Morgan and Lecia should have been working on was closer to the doorway than they were standing. He went to the pantry Lecia had been blocking and put his hands on the handle, swinging the doors open.

    Just as Greg thought, the baby was fast asleep on top of a bag of rice. Marshal picked him up carefully to avoid waking him up and the two of them turned around to see Lecia and Morgan facing them.

    Lecia seemed amused, a more genuine smile on her face. “Horatio said he would do inventory if we hid him from you. All you had to do was say you’d do inventory twice and I would have given him up.”

    “Just reading those lists is enough for me, one month of inventory was the best offer you were going to get from me.”

    Marshal left the kitchen, Greg and Kimber following after him. “What do we do now?”

    “I need to take Whitlock to my dad then go help the construction crew, Kimber needs to go find Elizabeth for her lesson, and you need to find your mom. You and I are done for the day.”

    Milo Neil

    Milo left Cecilia’s family in the middle of May to avoid walking during late June since he had a bigger chance of getting recognized with everyone going on trips through the states.

    He didn’t tell Alyssa that the last time they talked would potentially be their last in general, but he thought she would be alright.

    He made it back to the motel in late June, which is what he didn’t want, but he was immediately thrown off by the state of things.

    The first thing that caught his eye was the main building. It looked to be in better shape than when he had left last September.

    As soon as he looked away from the main building, he looked to where someone was usually stationed as a guard to see a man he didn’t recognize with a gun drawn on him. “Stop where you are.”

    He did as the man said and stopped, dropping his own gun as well. “Who are you?”

    The man inched closer, being noticeably more scared of the gun in his own hands than he was of Milo. “I’m on guard. What’s your business here?”

    “Great to meet you, on guard.” Milo stopped himself after hearing a girl’s laugh from behind the guard’s post. “What’s going on here?”

    “I don’t want to shoot, I’ll just… I’ll radio in.” The man started backing away to his post before grabbing a radio.

    The group never had radios since they never really needed them. It was always seven people and they typically stayed close to each other.

    Just as the guard raised the radio, a gunshot went off towards the motel making the both of them jump and seek cover. The guard dropped his radio when he jumped, an obvious look of embarrassment on his face as he tried to avoid looking at Milo.

    Milo saw a little girl look out from behind the guard’s post and wave as if nothing happened.

    In a matter of minutes, two people came out of the woods. One picked up Milo’s gun and the other picked up the guard’s radio.

    There was a moment of silence before either of the people said anything. “Go give them the all clear, I have to find someone.”

    Gregory ran through the yard, causing the guard and Milo to leave their spots.

    Milo went back to where his gun was once he realized that Marshal was the one who took his gun. He looked back at the guard’s post for a moment before the same little girl with blonde hair that waved at him started running after him. “Hey! Are you new here?”

    “I’ve been here before. Why were you hiding before the gun went off?”

    Her clothes lacked color and didn’t seem very clean in general. “I was playing hide and seek with Jude. He didn’t find me which means I won.”

    “That’s pretty cool and it takes a real champion to win hide and seek. I would know since I just about always beat my sister at it.” He smiled but then stopped, kneeling to get on eye level with the girl. “What’s your name?”

    “My name is Kimber.”

    “It’s nice to meet you, Kimber. My name is Milo.” She didn’t seemed frightened by a complete stranger. She acted like they were already friends. “Where are your parents?”

    Her smiled faded as she sighed and started messing with her hands. “I don’t know.”

    “Then you need to go back to the group. There’s gotta be someone watching out for you, right?”

    She shook her head. “Me and Jude are alone a lot unless we’re getting a lesson, then we get to talk to Elizabeth and sometimes she has the baby with her.”

    “Why don’t we go find Elizabeth? I’m sure she’s looking for you and Jude right now.” Kimber nodded before turning around and heading back to the motel.

    The guard was gone once they passed his post again and Milo didn’t see a sign of Marshal anywhere. Kimber went into the dining hall and froze in the doorway. “This was the last place I saw her.” She started going towards the kitchen and stopped when she heard someone calling her name, running straight to a table with Gregory, Morgan, and another boy that Milo assumed was Jude.

    He let her go with the other kids before going into the kitchen. Francine, Lecia, Ethan, and Joseph were in the kitchen, the three of them stopping immediately once they noticed he was there. “How did you two get here?”

    Joseph chuckled, looking back at what he was doing. “I could ask the same thing. Where are you supposed to be?”

    “Not in here. The guard disappeared and Marshal was around but he’s just disappeared as well so Kimber brought me in here.”

    The four of them shared a look before Lecia put down a dish towel she had in her hands and led Milo out of the kitchen. “I can take you to someone, no assurance they’re going to get you settled in but Marshal won’t cause a problem with them.”

    They left the dining hall and went upstairs. They passed the room that Milo assumed was still Marshal and Elizabeth’s. Lecia took him to a corner room and knocked on the door, immediately walking away.

    He was going to follow her until someone opened the door, drawing his attention back to them. It felt like he was staring directly at a ghost once he saw the woman’s dark brown hair and light green eyes.

    Tears started welling up in her eyes as she pulled him into a hug. “I’m so sorry I left you two.” He had to admit, after his own experience in the city and remembering how heavily they guarded his mother, he didn’t expect to see her out of headquarters again. “Lizzie told me about how you shot that man and I thought we wouldn’t see you again.”

    “I promised I would come back and I wasn’t raised to break a promise.”

    She pulled away with a slight laugh as she looked him over, a bright smile on her face. “You were barely a quarter of how tall you are now when I last saw you.”

    “If I could have stayed four forever then I would have. There’s not much to grow up for around here.”

    She shook her head, leaving her room and shutting the door behind her. “Have you seen the baby yet?”

    “I’ve only seen you, Kimber, and everyone in the kitchen.”

    “What do you mean the baby wasn’t in the kitchen?” She chuckled and wiped her face with her sleeves before walking back towards the stairs, stopping in front of Marshal and Elizabeth’s door. She knocked once and immediately got an answer from Elizabeth.

    Elizabeth looked a bit out of it but quickly straightened up once she realized Milo was with Leah. Elizabeth didn’t seem nearly as happy as their mother did, instead she acted angry. “Next time you shoot somebody, don’t wait months to come home.”

    It took him a moment to notice that her anger wasn’t real and she was just concerned. “Duly noted, where’s your kid?”

    She moved out of the doorway and held the door open for them, allowing them in. She shut the door behind them and moved past them to go to a crib on the other side of the room.

    She carefully pulled the baby out of the crib before passing him off to Milo.

    They spent a bit of time catching up before Marshal came back into the room, something obviously bothering him. He basically ignored Leah and Milo, focusing on Elizabeth. “You need to say something to Kimber. She’s going places that she already knows are off limits for whatever reason she wants. Monty is saying she distracted him when Milo came back and that she just walked off grounds to follow Milo.”

    “She’s just confused. She thinks she’s allowed off grounds because Greg is.”

    He scoffed, crossing his arms. “Not after the shit he pulled today. You need to talk to her, that’s it, because if she wanders off grounds and gets shot then what? Horatio can’t deal with a gunshot wound and she surely isn’t going to make it over a month until Alyssa gets back. Better yet, what if someone just takes her because she’s a six-year-old girl wandering this far away from the city by herself? They’re going to know she’s from quarantine and trace her back to here.”

    Elizabeth looked over to Milo as if to ask for help.

    [Convince Marshal to tell Kimber himself]
    [Convince Marshal that it’s Monty’s fault Kimber went off grounds]
    [Take blame for Kimber going off grounds and offer to say something]
    [Stay out of it]

  • [Take blame for Kimber going off grounds and offer to say something]

    5.9 After Leona had decided to move her people into the motel, things only switched up even more. Most of the group had gott

  • [Convince Marshal to tell Kimber himself]

    5.9 After Leona had decided to move her people into the motel, things only switched up even more. Most of the group had gott

  • [Take blame for Kimber going off grounds and offer to say something]

    I do understand correctly that with this choice, they'd still have a talk with Kimber, right? Because I think that is pretty much mandatory. At least options 2 and 4 seem to imply that wouldn't happen, so they are out for me by default.

    5.9 After Leona had decided to move her people into the motel, things only switched up even more. Most of the group had gott

  • (!) Voting is closed!
    Milo will take blame for Kimber going off grounds and say something to her.

    I’m closing the voting a bit quicker than usual because I’ve been working on the next part since I woke up this morning and it’s actually pretty close to being done.

    The first option would have caused some tension between Milo and Marshal after Milo not only blamed Marshal for it, but gotten aggressive with him over the way he was treating Elizabeth. Though, Marshal still would have said something to Kimber.

    The second option would have resulted in the guard, Monty, getting extremely pissed off with Milo and refusing to work with him in future parts. Nobody would have said anything to Kimber resulting in a part next chapter where she and Jude would have gone off grounds and fallen into the river, there’d then be a choice between which one to save.

    The fourth option would have caused Elizabeth to get upset with Milo, but she’d get over it pretty quickly. Leah would also be upset with Milo for his refusal to help Elizabeth. Nobody would say anything to Kimber and it would have ended up with the choice between Kimber and Jude next chapter.

  • edited August 2018

    5.10

    Amanda had spent the past two months trying to repair the damage to Luke’s arm that Elizabeth had caused and labeled him unfit to work, much to Isaac’s dismay.

    She had made improvements as she repaired it, which was what took the most time.

    Chelsea helped her with the programming, though she didn’t seem to be doing it willingly. Luke himself was constantly rushing the two and trying to convince them to leave things the same and let him get back out.

    He believed he had an idea of where the Voyagers were staying and demanded a meeting with select higher-ups as soon as Amanda said he was ready to get back out.

    He requested Isaac, Amanda, and Lyla be there but changed his request at the last minute to include Chelsea, Zachary, and Debbie.

    “When I ran into their group in the bunker, there were people there that aren’t even in our system. Three of the people there were people that I’ve never seen in my life, Ethan Rikard from quarantine was there, and one of the scouts they stole from us was there as well.” He looked over to Chelsea before looking at the other end of the table and focusing on Lyla. “Elizabeth had given birth in the last month or so, it was evident through my readings. Debbie said she saw Chelsea collapse in the break room around 12:26 in the afternoon.”

    Debbie pulled out her phone and scrolled through for a moment. “That’s right. Amanda’s records say that your arm started malfunctioning around 12:20. Is there a connection between the two times?”

    Lyla leaned forward in her seat, cupping her hands in front of her. “Amanda, would that malfunction happen to be a gunshot?”

    “My systems just said it was a malfunction but that could be a number of things, including a gunshot.” She seemed uneasy about something. “I wouldn’t be so quick to assume it was the gunshot when he ran into Elizabeth in the place she knows best. She formed a system that’s going to take months to crack and while it’s more complicated for her than it is for us, she knows how to use it. She turned that bunker into a weapon and we all saw it.”

    “I would normally agree with you, but the lab is the one place where there’s no specific weapon design. In fact, there were some wires that could have definitely choked somebody but they were welded down.” Luke crossed his arms and turned to Debbie. “I need you to go fetch the gun and the codes that were recovered.”

    She excused herself and returned ten minutes later with a gun in a bag and a piece of paper in a protective sheet, handing them to Luke and then returning to her seat. Zachary looked over the two for a moment before questioning Luke. “What do you need those for?”

    Lyla looked at the gun and waited for a nod from Luke before saying anything. “Isaac had me run the fingerprints from the gun when Luke brought it back. It’s not Elizabeth’s gun. Her prints were obviously on it, but it belongs to one of the field agents we lost to the Voyagers.”

    “Can you say that they stole it from him or if they’ve just taken him?” Isaac finally spoke up, though he seemed to be scanning over everyone in the room.

    Lyla didn’t get the chance to answer before Debbie said something. “Didn’t Luke say he was alive? He said three people he didn’t know, Ethan Rikard, an agent they took from us, and Elizabeth were present.” She paused. “I do think we’re getting off track, though. What was the big deal with the times earlier?”

    “Lyla, Amanda’s reports said 12:20 was when my arm started malfunctioning and I’ll be the first to admit that I shot Elizabeth as soon as she shot me. I blacked out and she was gone after that, the estimated time being 12:45. What’s the range she and Chelsea need to be in for the gene to work and just about how long does it take to work?”

    She stayed silent, though she was obviously thinking on it. “Debbie, I need some paper and a pen.” Debbie got up and got a blank sheet of paper from the printer and a pen from her bag, giving them to Lyla and returning to her seat. Lyla started to draw a map before passing it to Luke. “You said Elizabeth recently gave birth and since it’s her first child, it’s afflicted as well. If we say Elizabeth died at 12:20, then her baby and Chelsea died at 12:26. The camera records show that Chelsea was back and active by 12:30.” She looked at the map she made. “I can’t give the exact distance between the break room and the bunker, but you need to find out the distance and go the same distance in the opposite way, that’s the easiest way to locate the group if they’ve stayed in place.”

    Luke gave Chelsea the coded paper in the protective sheet. “You need to decode these.” She took the sheet and almost said something before he reminded himself of something Elizabeth had said in the bunker. “She mentioned that there’s somebody copying our security records and she swore up and down that it wasn’t her, is there any way you could look into that?”

    She nodded and then looked to Isaac. “Luke, get a group of our best together and follow Lyla’s suggestion. Chelsea, look into the coding. We’re done here.”

    The group split up. Lyla, Chelsea, and Amanda went back to their labs while Luke went to go gather a group and Isaac went to his office. Debbie followed Zachary back to his own office and requested to talk with him.

    “What’s going to happen with the Voyagers after Luke finds them?” She seemed sad about the results of the meeting. “We may not agree with them but there still people and capable of reforming.”

    “There’s certain people they aren’t going to be allowed the opportunity at reforming due to previous crimes that are unforgivable. The ones from quarantine that are alive will be sent back to quarantine.”

    “And by those with previous crimes you mean Marshal and Elizabeth?”

    He shook his head. “Marshal Kennedy, Milo Neil, Kyle Kennedy, Joseph Duke, Alyssa Kowalska, Ethan Rikard, the scout Luke mentioned, and whoever that Leona woman is. Elizabeth is just as guilty in their crimes, but the gene is going to prevent us from giving her the same punishment.”

    “Lyla just said that the gene is going to bring them back when they die and if she’s unfit for the same punishment as all those others, does that mean you’re going to see them executed?” He nodded. “You already attempted to have Marshal executed, do you and Isaac really believe that they’re going to go without a fight?”

    “They’ve gotten too uncontrollable, it’s the way things have to be. If they stayed the way they were while Joseph was in control then there wouldn’t be a problem because we’d only have to deal with one of them every six months but at this point, they’re aiming towards an aggressive approach and unless we want to be killed, we have to stay ahead of them.”

    Debbie sighed and nodded. “I understand, my apologies if I upset you.”

    She got out of her seat and left the office, immediately getting grabbed and pulled into the women’s restroom. The person who pulled in there had her mouth covered and shushed her before they moved their hand.

    Debbie turned around to see who it was, seeing Chelsea standing behind her. “Don’t punch me, just hear me out for a moment.” She unclenched her fist and crossed her arms. “I heard what you were saying to Zachary, why do you seem to care so much for the Voyagers?”

    She hesitated for a moment, trying to come up with an answer that Chelsea would like. “Because they’re human. They’re not animals and we shouldn’t be treating them like they are.”

    Chelsea seemed to appreciate the answer and eased up a bit. “Look, there’s not many Voyagers here that still remember anything about the group, but there’s one that desperately needs help. Eris Duke is dying and if she doesn’t get the medicine that’s given to us to help prevent symptoms of the disease, she will die.”

    “Why are you telling me this?”

    “Because you have access to medical records. It’ll be easier to alter the records from your station and it would technically be a cyber attack if I did it from my station and they’d launch an investigation for that. I’m going to start giving Eris my medicine to try and help her.” She paused. “I just need you to alter the records.”

    “What if you get sick?” Debbie scoffed. “Never mind that, you’re asking me to commit a crime that’ll get me executed, what the hell is wrong with you?”

    “Listen, it could save her life at the cost of our own, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take on my own if I have to.” Debbie noticed Chelsea didn’t like her defiance. “The Voyagers have no advantage over us and what they’re telling you about them being aggressive is ridiculous. In the time I was there, I witnessed the execution of a man who tried to assault a woman. That same man was someone Elizabeth and I had to overthrow if she wanted to get back into her own group. If he were still in charge, I would agree that they’re aggressive and threat but he’s dead. Are you going to help me or not?”

    [Help Chelsea alter the records]
    [Refuse to help Chelsea]

    Alyssa Kowalska

    Most of the month had been spent preparing for the last month ahead of them.

    They were all ready to head home and it was clear that everyone had pulled their weight for the past nine months.

    They’d bonded on a level that none of them expected after Marshal and Milo disappeared.

    Cecilia was the only person who had at least one similar interest with everyone in the group.

    She shared Alyssa’s love of biology, Samantha’s interest in gardening, Vincent’s interest in traveling, and the mechanic work that Cyrus has always enjoyed.

    Because of those interests, she made a promise to all of them. She promised Alyssa, Samantha, and Cyrus that once they got back home, she’d be spending time helping them all with what they enjoyed the most. She also made a promise to Vincent that they’d travel the world once the Voyagers achieved their goal.

    Alyssa didn’t notice it earlier, but Cecilia was the hope the group needed to keep going after Marshal and Milo left.

    She didn’t seem phased by what happened with Jordan and said on multiple occasions that she was glad he wouldn’t be able to hurt her anymore. She was relieved about Milo going back to her family’s farm and finding a way to contact Alyssa after that because it meant her family was safe.

    Marshal’s original plan included Cyrus taking the van back to South Dakota once the others got on the plane to Hawaii, which was the last state they had to go to.

    He talked it over with Vincent and they offered to have her switch the plan if she wanted to.

    She had doubts that Vincent would be able to defend the group with the determination that Cyrus would, but she also knew that Vincent could take a few more punches than Cyrus could.

    Nobody knew what to expect from Hawaii since the Voyagers had no connections there. The entire group was nervous about going, but everyone else already knew that Alyssa would go with or without them.

    Samantha believed that Cyrus should come with them in case things got bad. She’d have to leave her bow with whoever took the van back home and she wouldn’t be much help in a physical fight, but she also didn’t know how to drive which is why she wouldn’t offer to drive back herself.

    Cecilia knew how to drive but Alyssa knew she’d be someone that she’d want around if a physical confrontation was what they were expecting. She had a talent for moving quicker and being more difficult to hit, but she also didn’t hit too hard. She thought Vincent should go with the group since Cyrus knew how to fix a car if it broke down and Vincent would end up stranded if the van broke down on him.

    While the day was far off, Alyssa wanted to make the choice with plenty of time in advance so everyone knew what to expect when it was time to go.

    [Send Cyrus back with the van]
    [Send Vincent back with the van]

    Joseph Duke

    Joseph noticed that Milo had to spend most of the month trying to convince Kimber and Jude to stay on grounds. It didn’t help that Marshal, Greg, and Joseph himself went off grounds most days.

    Joseph would leave the motel just to get a breath of fresh air and go for a walk. Most times he went for a walk, he wouldn’t run into any trouble.

    He rarely went to the creek since he’d heard that it was basically a death trap.

    After hearing so many things about it from most of the people in the group, he eventually decided to take a trip down by himself and get some thoughts of his own.

    He stayed close to the creek for an hour and determined it was pretty plain.

    It was once he was going to head back to the motel that he caught a glimpse of something watching him from a bush. He carefully approached it, trying to get a better look at it before he heard growling coming from inside the bush.

    He took it as a sign to back off but was still curious about it, crouching down to get a look at what it was.

    While he was crouched, the bush rustled and a dog stepped out. He couldn’t tell if the dog was going to approach him or if it was going to attack him, but he stayed in place.

    The dog slowly came up to him and started sniffing him all around before stopping in front of him and wagging her tail.

    He slowly reached out to pet her, which she allowed.

    “I’m going to be honest with you, I don’t know anything about dogs so let me know if you came with an instruction guide.” She perked her head up and wagged her tail some more once he spoke.

    He looked over her for a collar and didn’t find one, so he stood up and started walking back to the motel to see if she would follow him.

    She trotted to keep up with him, only stopping once Joseph walked past the guard’s post. She looked at him as if she was asking permission to pass the post as well.

    He crouched once again, the dog running right up to him and wagging her tail.

    She stopped wagging her tail as soon as someone approached the two of them, watching Elizabeth’s every move.

    Elizabeth had the baby, so she stopped a few feet away from the dog. Joseph looked over to see she seemed pretty nervous. “Where’d you find it?”

    “By the creek, you ever seen her before?”

    “Can’t say that I have, but I’m definitely seeing the glare she’s giving me now.” She chuckled, trying to hide her nervousness. “Are you going to keep her?”

    Joseph pet the dog again, making her ease up and look away from Elizabeth. “If she’ll stay, then yeah.”

    “Does she have a name?”

    “I don’t think so.” He paused, looking over the dog. “You know, Eris always said that if she could have a daughter, she’d name her Riley. I think it’s a nice name, don’t you?”

    Joseph heard Elizabeth getting closer until she crouched down next to him, holding her hand out for the dog. “I think it’s a pretty name.”

    The dog sniffed her hand and eventually licked her, then turned her attention to the baby. She put her face directly into the baby’s face, sniffing him before she started wagging her tail again.

    Elizabeth stood up once Riley backed away. “His first animal experience and she got slobber all over him.” She sighed. “I should clean him up and you should probably feed her, she’s pretty thin.”

    Joseph waited until Elizabeth walked away before leading the dog to the dining hall and introducing her to the people in there before getting her a bowl of scraps they’d collected and were originally going to throw away.

    Marshal Kennedy

    At the end of the month, Filip had approached Marshal with a concern that he wanted to bring up with the council.

    “There’s been a huge spike in Onyx activity and they’re getting closer to the motel every single time one of the scouts spot them. I feel like they have a lead on our position and they’re planning to act.” Filip seemed a bit unnerved by it and acted as if he was going to suggest something drastic.

    “What makes you think they’re planning to act?” Horatio questioned him. “I can understand what would make you think they have a lead on our position, but why would they act without monitoring us first?”

    “Because they know that if we catch onto them, we’re either going to fight or we’re going to disappear for another thirty years.” Joseph answered before Filip could. “They’d probably win a fight with us, too.”

    “I don’t think that’s true, especially now that Greg’s training.” Ethan added on. “Plus, we’ve got numbers on ‘em. Leona’s people could take them on their own if they had to.”

    Leona nodded, seeming to take Ethan’s side. Elizabeth didn’t seem too confident in Ethan’s saying, though. “Is it even worth the risk? There’s already two orphans here and I’d rather not make my own son an orphan because we got ahead of ourselves. We’re better off just leaving.”

    “What about when the rally group comes back? That’s just going to get them caught.” Francine frowned. “Not only do we have numbers, but we also know the area better. If it comes down to it, we just split up into different groups.”

    Filip sighed, turning to Marshal. “This wasn’t supposed to be the topic, but what do you think we do if they show up here?”

    ”We fight them back.”
    ”A fight isn’t worth it. We leave.”

  • edited August 2018

    These seem like difficult choices. I'm going to have to think on them for a while.
    Also, it is cute the Voyagers have a pet dog now.

    5.10 Amanda had spent the past two months trying to repair the damage to Luke’s arm that Elizabeth had caused and labeled him u

  • They’re all pretty important choices and I may have made a bit of a mistake by putting three of them in the same part, but these are the set up choices for the next chapter.

    Take all the time you need! :)

    These seem like difficult choices. I'm going to have to think on them for a while. Also, it is cute the Voyagers have a pet dog now.

  • [Help Chelsea alter the records]

    [Send Cyrus back with the van]

    ”A fight isn’t worth it. We leave.”

    Tales is right, those are difficult choices, especially the first and third and it took me a bit to make up my mind on them. The fact that it's three at once isn't making it any easier. I'm still not entirely sure, but I don't think I'm going to change my votes. The only one I am pretty certain about and was from the beginning was the second one, because Cyrus just seems like the overall better option to me, due to Alyssa's thoughts in the penultimate paragraph. I am way less sure about the first choice and to a certain degree about the third, but this is what I'm going to stick with for now.

    5.10 Amanda had spent the past two months trying to repair the damage to Luke’s arm that Elizabeth had caused and labeled him u

  • I agree with Liquid to[Send Cyrus back with the van]. However, I'm not sure about the other two choices yet.

    5.10 Amanda had spent the past two months trying to repair the damage to Luke’s arm that Elizabeth had caused and labeled him u

  • [Help Chelsea alter the records]
    This helps Eris and keeps Chelsea out of trouble

    [Send Cyrus back with the van]

    ”A fight isn’t worth it. We leave.”
    The last time when they left nobody died and most of the group is from quarantine so they are sick.

  • I'm not sure either of these two will win, but I pick [Refuse to help Chelsea] and [”We fight them back.”] You already saw my choice for the second one.

    5.10 Amanda had spent the past two months trying to repair the damage to Luke’s arm that Elizabeth had caused and labeled him u

  • So I'm going to go ahead and close the voting, this time with a little update and an announcement.

    First, the voting is closed! Debbie will help Chelsea alter the records, Alyssa will send Cyrus back home, and Marshal will order the group to leave. They're all good choices, but one of them was just picking the lesser of two evils. I'm going to put the alternate results under a spoiler just because this post is going to be a long one already.

    Had Debbie refused to help Chelsea, Chelsea would have found a way to blackmail Debbie into staying silent on the matter and altered the records herself, eventually getting caught and having to come clean about helping Eris. Isaac would have been furious and fired her on the spot.

    In this particular situation, nothing much is going to change by Alyssa sending Cyrus instead of Vincent. This would have been a more vital choice if Marshal decided to fight against Onyx instead of just leaving.

    I personally believe the final choice was the biggest one of the part and thankfully, I can explain all the ways it could have gone wrong instead of dreading the result myself. If the choice to fight had won, there obviously would have been a standoff against the group and Onyx. There would have been multiple casualties, including Marshal, Monty, and a character from Leona's group. This choice would have drastically changed Elizabeth's character as a direct result of Marshal's death.

    Now for the update, I reworked the way the final chapter is going to work out and ultimately decided that it's going to stay this way: There's ten chapters that have certain characters the make up the more major choices, that's not going to change. What has changed is that the 11th chapter will be made up of the usual 11 parts, but the events that are voted on will be from a different character's perspective every time and most of those choices are going to be extremely major choices that can and will impact the ending of the first Act.

    And finally, an announcement that I'm happy to be able to make. This will really show you guys how bad I am with time, specifically days. The story hit a milestone on the first of the month! Voyagers turned a year old almost a month ago and it's honestly pretty surprising to me since it really doesn't feel like it has been over a full year. It's been a stressful year, you guys are well aware of some of the personal things I've had to face, but I'm overjoyed to have been able to make a like this. I want to thank every who has read this story and submitted characters, as you guys have literally kept this story going and it means the world to me. At the current rate, we'll almost certainly be started with Act 2 at this time next year and words can't describe how excited I am to continue this story.

    With that being said, the finale can be expect before the week ends. :)

  • edited September 2018

    5.11- Chapter 5 Finale

    Alyssa didn’t like to be proven wrong most times, though she was happy to be wrong about what they could expect from Hawaii.

    The people there were kind enough to them and didn’t show any hostility besides the occasional dirty glare, but they got that everywhere they went.

    Things broke off from the plan when Marshal ended up picking them up once they got home.

    The van was completely silent on the way back until Vincent realized they were going the opposite way of the motel. Vincent immediately reacted by getting defensive. “So just what the hell happened while we were gone? We all know this isn’t the way home.”

    Marshal always seemed a bit annoyed by Vincent, though he barely reacted to Vincent’s current state. He shrugged, but stayed silent.

    As the group expected, Samantha pushed for more of a response since Vincent didn’t get a reaction. “Marshal, we’ve been under the impression that you’ve been arrested for the past seven months. Whatever’s going on, we have the right to know.”

    Alyssa had noticed a few things beside his complete silence were off about Marshal. She had never seen him wear the same pair of clothes for two days just because he was a bit of a neat freak, though the clothes he currently had on didn’t seem clean. She once overheard that he and Elizabeth both weren’t a fan of facial hair, so he normally stayed clean shaven. It seemed like it had been a few days since he’d last shaved.

    She knew nobody in the back would pick up on little things like that. “They’re right, something’s really off here and we should know.”

    He seemed to be getting frustrated with their pushing before he shook his head and sighed. “The motel is done. A few people were concerned about Onyx catching onto our location because of the gene that binds Elizabeth, Whitlock, and Chelsea. We took what we could and left. Some people disagreed with leaving and even said we were spineless for doing it, but it was the right decision. Leona and I watched the motel for a few days after we left and Onyx found it. Luke led at least twenty people into each room there before Leona and I left.”

    The van stayed silent for a moment before Samantha spoke again, her voice cracking immediately. “Where are we staying now?”

    She already knew why Samantha was upset. Samantha thrived as a person in a stable home. She picked up tasks that would better herself and the people around her that normally wouldn’t be available if she was constantly moving around.

    “We aren’t staying anywhere. There’s no real safe place for us in the state, but we’re reaching a point that we can’t leave.” He paused, seeming to hesitate on if he should go on or not. “If I’m being completely transparent with you guys, I don’t expect us to be in the same place we are right now in the next three years. Onyx is cracking down on us and if we don’t act in the near future then we’ll either be dead or imprisoned at this time in three years from now.”

    “What exactly are you planning?” Cecilia spoke up, her voice just barely louder than Samantha’s was a moment ago.

    “We’re eventually going to have to stand up for ourselves. To do that, we need to keep active in our ways.” Alyssa noticed him briefly look in the rear view mirror before looking back to the road. “Horatio and Alyssa will work together on keeping their medical skills in the best shape they can be, the scouts, Greg, and myself are going to start branching out of our comfort zone more, so on and so forth. Everyone’s got their own schtick and that’s what they’re going to focus on.”

    Alyssa noted the expressions of the others, noticing that Cecilia seemed a bit down, Samantha looked heartbroken by the news, but Vincent was furious. Even if she didn’t note his reaction, she would have found out seconds later when he questioned the decision. “What do you mean by branching out?” He paused and then scoffed. “So you’re willing to leave your wife and kid just like that?”

    Cecilia frowned slightly, looking out the window. “That’s not fair, Vincent.” Samantha stayed silent, but seemed to agree with Cecilia.

    Alyssa couldn’t help but notice that Marshal did seem a little put off by the comment and Vincent was the type to keep going when something upset him. Knowing that encouraged her to say something before he could. “It’s pretty unfair. Vincent, you remember that Marshal was the one who was against the rallies because it would take him away from Elizabeth, having a kid surely isn’t going to make things easier. He did the rallies because it was his job, just like branching out.”

    Vincent sighed in the backseat and then went silent.

    “What else changed?” Samantha seemed to regain her confidence after a few minutes. “I feel like there’s some things you’re selectively not telling us, but I should remind you that none of us like surprises.”

    “Too many things. Besides the whole not having a home thing, Leona’s group has joined us and around twenty people that she and Elizabeth got out of quarantine while trying to get Joseph and Ethan out. Joseph found some dog somewhere and he keeps saying that she’ll go away but she hasn’t gone away yet.” He paused, trying to think in what else he should say. “Milo made it back, Leah joined us after…” He stopped, his expression going somber. “That’s not important.”

    “What about the baby?” Cecilia leaned forward in her seat, a wide smile on her face. “You keep mentioning it but you haven’t told us about it.”

    Alyssa saw him perk back up once Cecilia mentioned the baby, even though he stayed quiet for a moment. “It’s a boy. We got pretty lucky with him since he’s not really high maintenance and not particularly active unless someone is completely focused on him.”

    She noticed Vincent seemed interested in the talk and was over what had just happened. He had a slight smirk on his face. “How old is he? Elizabeth wasn’t even showing when we left, so he can’t be too old.”

    “Elizabeth and my dad told me that he was about two weeks early.” He paused. “He’s almost six months.”

    They talked a bit about the baby before they reached the rest stop that the group seemed to have set up camp.

    Marshal asked Samantha to find Lecia so she could help the group meet all the people that had come around while they were gone. She, Cecilia, and Vincent went with Lecia but Marshal stopped Alyssa before she could leave.

    “Look, I’ve gotta be honest with you.” She had already picked up on the fact that he was keeping something hidden from the group, she just didn’t know what to expect. “It’s about Milo. I know you two are close and like Samantha said, some surprises aren’t good. There’s a set of twins that came from quarantine and he took them up on his own about a month ago. I’m not sure if it’s temporary, but he’s been a bit touchy with things regarding them.”

    “Why were they in quarantine in the first place?”

    “The girl got put in because of the flu and once they found out the entire family had an alleged chronic illness, they took them all in and she had to stay after she got over the flu because of that.” He seemed a bit upset by something. “That chronic illness isn’t even an illness, it’s asthma. The boy has asthma and I genuinely can’t tell you if his radio silence is because he’s afraid or if he just can’t talk.”

    “How old are they? What happened to their parents?” Alyssa looked out the window, immediately noticing the dog that Marshal had mentioned earlier.

    “They’re six and the records that Elizabeth and Leona took from quarantine say that their birthday is the 27th of December.” He paused, looking out of his own window. “I can’t tell you what happened to their parents. Nobody from quarantine knew about them or their family and they won’t say anything on it themselves either. That’s why I was hoping you could try and help figure that out.”

    “Marshal, you have no idea what you’re doing now, do you?”

    He shook his head. “No, absolutely not. I barely had a plan for when we were in the motel and I’m just trying to do what feels right, which turns out to be extremely wrong for the group.” He seemed like he wanted to goon, but he stopped himself. “You should probably go check in with Milo; you can find him by looking for a cardboard box that’s upside down.”

    “That’s… oddly specific.”

    “That’s where Kimber and Jude hide themselves from everyone. They only trust him to watch it whether they’re in it or not.”

    Elizabeth Kennedy

    After they had left the motel, Leah and Kyle mentioned that they wanted to spend more time with Whitlock, so he was often left in their care while the group was taking a break from walking.

    Grady had always accused Elizabeth of keeping secrets and even outed her over some of the things she had kept hidden from the group. She knew he had been trying to sober up since they left the motel and she had tried to be more understanding towards him while he did it.

    There was one thing that Grady knew that Marshal didn’t and he had already agreed to not say anything, saying that it would be disrespectful to tell the group about it.

    The one thing Marshal seemed to forget about Luke is that he was an excellent tracker and he wouldn’t stop until the job was done.

    Luke had tracked the group down multiple times since they left and never would say how he found them. He never really did anything the first few times he showed up, mainly because he knew Elizabeth was aware of his presence.

    One of the only times he got close to the group was to deliver an ultimatum to Elizabeth when he thought she was alone.

    What he wanted relied on her cooperation. He had told her that if she started meeting him privately then he wouldn’t give away their location to Onyx. He said that the group had made a mistake by leaving the motel and made the situation worse for themselves and that his offer was an act of pity towards the entire group. He gave her until Alyssa’s group returned to make a decision and gave her a specific set of instructions for whatever she decided.

    Grady didn’t get a chance to talk to Elizabeth until later in the week when he revealed what he knew to her and promised her that he’d keep it a secret.

    He seemed a bit nervous now that Alyssa’s group was back, though Elizabeth couldn’t place if it was because of the withdrawal or the situation. “What are you going to do?”

    “I don’t know. It’s not like I haven’t been thinking about my options either, they’re all I’ve been thinking about.” She sighed, watching her mother play with the baby nearby. “In any situation, I lose. In one, I risk my marriage and basically everything I’ve built my life around. In the other, I risk having the group taken down at Onyx’s orders for when Luke snitches on us.”

    “You’re only considering turning him down or actually sleeping with him.” Grady knew his boundaries with Elizabeth, but decided against better judgement that trying to convince her of a third option was enough to step over those boundaries. “What if you tell Marshal? I can already tell you that he isn’t just going to let someone else fuck his wife.”

    He noticed her wince before she fixed a frown on her face. “And what can he do? Move again just for Luke to track us down again? Grady, Luke won’t hesitate to kill Marshal. He absolutely hates him and he’s just waiting for Marshal to make a move at this point so he can call it self defense and get away with it.”

    “Even if he can’t do anything about it, he’s your husband and the leader of this group. His input is more valuable than anyone else for both of those reasons.” Grady paused, following Elizabeth’s gaze to Leah and Whitlock. “You really don’t think Luke would hurt a baby, do you?”

    “That baby is still a Voyager, his parents are Voyagers, his grandparents are Voyagers, his uncle is a Voyager. It’s in his blood and Isaac won’t stand for it, even if he is just a baby.” Grady saw her eyes starting to get glossy as she took a deep breath and put her head in her hands. “Grady, what can I do to protect him from this all?”

    Grady moved in front of her to avoid the rest of group catching on and being forced to explain the situation to them. “If you want the truth, you can’t protect him from anything. These are situations that arise because we follow a way of life that’s threatening to Onyx.” He crossed his arms, occasionally looking over his shoulder. “You have an address that look gave you with a time you can find him, right? You still have that paper?”

    She barely nodded and sniffled before answering. “It’s the address to the same bar that I first got shot in. He said that if I go then I need to wear something that’ll conceal my identity since I’ve already died there and a lot of regulars and staff were there.”

    “But what if you don’t go at all? What if you give that address to somebody else and they handle him? Hell, I’ll do it myself if I have to.”

    She finally looked up from the ground, shaking her head. “I couldn’t ask that of anybody. This is my mess and I’ve got to find out how I can clean it up.”

    Grady moved to sit back down next to her instead of blocking her view of Whitlock. “Hear me out, you give me the address and I get a group together. People in the city are more afraid of our group than they’ve ever been purely because of the rallies and I already know of the group I’d get together.”

    “Who would that be?”

    “Well, you still need to tell Marshal what’s going on and he’s definitely not going to be overjoyed to hear about it, but he’ll be thrilled to go to the address.” Grady started scanning the group. “Joseph, Filip, Ethan, Leona, Milo, Cyrus, Vincent, Samantha, Horatio. That’s eleven people compared to just Luke and it’s not even counting the people I’m intentionally leaving out of this because they can’t leave here.”

    Elizabeth already knew she had to make a choice on how to handle the situation. She pulled the folded piece of paper out of her pocket and held it in her hands.

    [Accept Luke’s deal]
    [Refuse Luke’s deal and refuse to take action]
    [Refuse Luke’s deal and accept Grady’s plan]
    [Take Grady's earlier idea and get Marshal's input]

    Next time:

    • ”Pierre, I want to know where you were when we actually needed your help. You have no right to sit here and ridicule those two when you’ve done no better than they have. You’re the one who left us with Rocco despite the protests of almost every single member of the group and in a way, you’re responsible for all the failures he delivered to both groups and the members of those groups.”

    • ”I’m not the one you have to win over and you’re honestly wasting your time trying to sway my vote since it’s flat out useless in the new system.”

    • Onyx’s programs had a tendency to be a bit overpowered, which was almost a reflection of Isaac’s grasp at power. He would rather have it pried from his cold, dead hands than just giving up peacefully.

  • [Refuse Luke’s deal and accept Grady’s plan]

    There is no way that Luke would honor his end of the deal if she agreed to sleep with him. He would just get something he wanted than just turn them all in anyway. I think refusing Luke's deal and going with Grady's plan for a surprise ambush would be the smartest move. This may be the best chance the voyagers have to capture and interrogate or kill a huge threat to them.

    5.11- Chapter 5 Finale Alyssa didn’t like to be proven wrong most times, though she was happy to be wrong about what they could

  • [Refuse Luke’s deal and accept Grady’s plan]

    Is Luke actually serious there? Oh man, that is definitely the most disgusting deal he could have possibly come up with, eh? No way I'm going to accept it, especially as I'm half certain he might have plans beyond just regularly raping her. Refusing to take action is not going to lead to anything good either. So, I agree with Grady's plan and Tales' reasoning and this is the option I shall pick.

    5.11- Chapter 5 Finale Alyssa didn’t like to be proven wrong most times, though she was happy to be wrong about what they could

  • edited September 2018

    (!) Voting is closed!

    Elizabeth will accept Grady's plan and refuse Luke's deal.

    This option actually would have favored well for multiple reasons that'll be seen, though it's going to shed a certain character in a much different light than we're used to.

    So, for the others choices.

    [Accept Luke's deal]: This option would have been quite easily the worst one to pick. Elizabeth would have told Grady to stay quiet about it and he would agree to staying quiet, but continue to try to talk her out of it. Marshal wouldn't know for a long time and he would have been crushed to find out about it through Grady, then completely cut things off with Elizabeth because of her dishonesty. Eventually the entire group would have found out and Elizabeth would have left the group permanently.

    [Refuse Luke’s deal and refuse to take action]: Grady would have started hinting to Marshal that they needed to leave, then he would have later outright told Leona that the group needed to move and explained to her why. Leona would have convinced Marshal to move the group without telling him about Luke.

    [Take Grady's earlier idea and get Marshal's input]:Elizabeth would have admitted to Marshal what happened and asked his opinion on what to do. He wouldn't have known what to do at first, but he would have been furious about it. He would have decided on confronting Luke on his own.

    Now for some news. The next part has been written and I'm going to take this time to share a little bit of what's going on in my personal life. I had an interview this morning and I've been worrying about it for the past few days, but I got the job! That's normally great news, but it does mean the story might slow down in how often pieces are posted, but I swear that it won't end until the story is completely finished.

  • 6.1 - Vengeance

    Elizabeth looked at the letter in her hand before offering it to Grady. “I want to tell Marshal myself, you get together a group you see fit and I’ll have him talk to you when we’re done.”

    Grady looked at the paper, hesitating on taking it. “Are you sure?” She nodded, keeping the letter in place.

    He took it after she confirmed that it was what she wanted to do, then went on his own way. She cupped her hands as she watched him go to the first person he saw, which had been Leona.

    She looked over the group before locking eyes with Whitlock while he was attempting to pick himself up off the ground, quickly reaffirming her that she had made the right choice.

    As soon as she tried to remember where she had last seen Marshal, someone took a seat next to her and put one of their hands on top of her hands that had been cupped together. “You’re nervous, what’s going on?”

    While Elizabeth was always hesitant to call out any of his moods, Marshal would say it as he saw it. He would always say that the easiest way to fix any problems with his observation was to be honest with her and have her correct him if he was wrong.

    “Elizabeth?” He sounded concerned, though he normally did. The leadership role was something he was decent at, but something that he hated. Elizabeth knew it stressed him out more than anything and that telling him about Luke would just add another problem.

    She nearly told him it was nothing until she noticed Grady and Leona watching her impatiently. He knew she hadn’t said anything yet and he wasn’t going to take his eyes off of her until she did.

    Elizabeth got and dusted herself off. “I need to talk to you. Away from the group, preferably.”

    He seemed to only get more nervous himself before getting up and following her down a camping trail. He waited until they had gotten a fair distance from the group before saying anything. “Is everything alright?”

    She stopped at one of the picnic benches set up along the trail, taking a seat and waiting for him to sit before she could even think about what to say. “You’re not going to like what I have to say and you’ve got every right to be upset about it. I can just hope that’ll you believe me since I left my proof with the group.”

    Things between the two of them had been difficult at times since Marshal had assumed the current position he had. They both understood that it was the lack of time he had for Eris was the reason Joseph didn’t do much while he was the leader, which is why they had been trying to make things work. “Elizabeth, you’ve got no reason to lie to me.”

    She nodded. “I know, I just wanted to be sure that you knew that.” Elizabeth already knew she couldn’t put it off much longer without raising his suspicions anymore. “It’s about Luke. He’s been tracking us since we left the motel and knows where we are.”

    “How do you know that?” She could already tell by his voice that he was a bit surprised by what she had said and that there was no way he would be prepared for the full truth.

    “Because he reached out to me on one of the days that you and Leona went back to the motel. Your dad had the baby and my mom was with Milo, so I was alone and he approached me the second I stepped out of sight from the rest of the group. He told me that if started an affair with him then he’d keep quiet about where the group was as long as we were seeing each other, gave me an address, and then told me I had until Alyssa came back to decide.” She paused to try and decide where to go from there. “Grady overheard it and he swore to me that he’d keep quiet about it until I made a decision.”

    The silence she got in response was gut wrenching to her. For once, she didn’t know what to expect from him and he wasn’t giving any indication of what he was feeling. “Why are you telling me this?”

    “Just so I can be honest with you.” She took a deep breath, looking at the trees ahead of her. “I’m not going to do it, obviously, but Grady is getting a group together to confront him at the address tonight.”

    “Where is it?”

    “The bar that has one less bouncer because of you.” She chuckled, trying to calm him down.

    She realized her attempt fell flat when she didn’t get a response out of him. “Thanks for telling me.”

    He got up and left without another word, heading away from where the group was set up.

    Leona

    Grady had told her what happened with Elizabeth and told her that he urgently needed her help setting up a group of specific people before nightfall.

    She went around to a few of the people he’d named and recruited their help while he got the rest of the group himself.

    They noticed Elizabeth and Marshal left the area before to sun started setting, only for Elizabeth to return on her own. She said she couldn’t tell them where Marshal was because she didn’t know and that they would be better off going on their own if they wanted to make it on time.

    Grady didn’t like the idea of going without Marshal, so he protested and said they would wait another half hour.

    Once he did show up, Grady told him about the plan the group had been informed of and left the rest up to him.

    They had to take the truck and the van since the entire group wouldn’t fit in just one of the vehicles, but that didn’t bother anybody.

    Despite leaving late, they got to the bar early and tried to get in without raising any alarms since most of them were known and the bartender would be the first to alert Luke and subsequently, Onyx.

    The ones who weren’t known to the bartender went in first and opened a door around back to allow the others in without having to pass the bartender.

    They waited for a bit before Luke showed up and ordered his drink, heading to his seat. The Voyagers who had weapons quickly took a hiding spot and unholstered their weapons.

    The group agreed that it was within Marshal’s rights to be the one to talk to Luke, though they all knew that t would be more than just a talk.

    Leona and Milo were supposed to keep things as civil as possible, which loosely meant they needed to prevent any casualties. They were also ordered to stay close to Marshal so they could listen in and provide assistance if things went south.

    Marshal took a seat on the stool next to Luke, who refused to look at him. “You know, it’s pretty funny. You’re the same man who dismissed a bartender’s claims of me being a Voyager because I punched him over Elizabeth. I’d almost say it’s a coincidence, but I don’t believe in those.”

    “How fucking dense do you have to be to show up here?” Luke took a drink before setting his cup back in the table. “If you need a reminder, you’re wanted for multiple murders of civilians and Onyx officials. This is a public building and I’m an Onyx representative.”

    “Since we’re reminding each other of the obvious, you’re walking a thin line between treason against Onyx and attempted extortion. I may have committed the heavier crimes in terms of legality but you’ve committed the worst ones in Isaac’s books.” Luke didn’t respond, prompting Marshal to push more. “You don’t give a shit about what Isaac thinks, that’s no secret, but what about Chelsea? What would she think of you trying to seduce a married woman in one of the most fucked up ways you can?”

    Luke took another drink before getting out his seat, Marshal quickly following his lead. Luke quickly scanned the bar before snickering. “You really felt the need to bring eleven other people over this?” He shook his head and sighed. “I’ll spell it out for you since you really don’t get it, she doesn’t love you. She was using you to have a kid, she got that and you even proved to her that you’re not a capable husband or father just by completely neglecting the two of them. She may not admit it to your face, but she’s done with you.”

    Leona watched something snap inside Marshal. He went dead silent for a moment before shaking his head and clearing his throat and then throwing a punch at Luke. In a matter of seconds, they were both on the ground in an attempt to better one another.

    Joseph took his eyes off of the bartender once he realized what was going on, quickly going over to separate the two. He stopped Leona when she went over to try and help as well. “You and Samantha need to stay away, if anyone gets in the way then they’re just another target to the both of them.”

    Cyrus and Horatio quickly went to help Joseph with restraining Luke, the three of them thinking Marshal would come to his senses quicker.

    They were proven wrong when Marshal continued to try and get at Luke. Milo, Filip, and Ethan moved to restrain him and try to talk him down as Luke continued to taunt him.

    The bartender left the bar with a baseball bat in hand to protect himself and announced to the group that he had called Luke’s superiors and they were on the way. He was clearly uncomfortable around the group and returned to his bar as soon as he made himself clear, though he continued to watch from there.

    In that instant, Marshal stopped struggling with Milo, Filip, and Ethan. “It’s fine, I’m fine, we’re all cool here. I’m not going to start anything else until Isaac gets here.” The three shared a cautious look before Grady and Vincent put themselves between the two and allowed them to let go of Marshal.

    The bartender turned his attention back to his customers once he convinced himself that Marshal had calmed down and wouldn’t cause a problem.

    He walked around for a minute, putting plenty of distance between himself and Luke.

    Samantha dropped her bow and arrows to the ground as soon as she realized Marshal’s intention of getting released. “Leona, grab him! He’s going for the bat!”

    As soon as Samantha made the call, Marshal bound over the bar and took the bat before the bartender could grab it or Leona could grab him.

    Leona noticed Milo moving out of the way and the people restraining Luke also backing off a bit. “Are you all really about to let him beat a restrained man?”

    She attempted to go restrain him herself, but Milo grabbed her and pulled her away. “He’s deadest on ruining Luke and anyone who gets in his way. Luke has a chance since he’s enhanced, but he’d kill any of us for stepping in the way.”

    Vincent and Grady stayed in the way once Marshal got close while Joseph, Cyrus, and Horatio let go of Luke. The five of them got out of the way once the were certain Luke was back up to fighting.

    The bartender started rushing his customers out of the bar, trying to keep them safe and out of the way.

    The group backed off as Marshal took a swing at Luke’s knee, which knocked him unstable and likely ruined the augmentation of his right leg. They found themselves putting more distance between themselves and the scene with each swing he took, an unspoken fear taking over each of them as they watched.

    He kept swinging the bat at a different part of Luke’s body every time, eventually tossing it to the ground and crouching in front of Luke and pulling his head up to make him meet his eyes. “It’s a real shame that you won’t be in working order for a few more years now. I guess you won’t get the chance to fuck my wife after all.”

    Joseph slowly started moving towards Marshal while Samantha moved towards the bat.

    Milo took on distracting him so he didn’t think to grab the bat again. “Marshal, it’s over. Back off a little, he’s not going to get up right now.”

    “I’m well aware of that.” Marshal stood back up and took a deep breath before turning to face the group. “I’m sure that seemed like overkill to all of you, but Joseph and Ethan can attest that Luke would have done the same to me. That man beat up on me for months while I was in the city whenever he felt like it just because he knew that I wasn’t going to let him lay his hands on Elizabeth. He beat up on Milo for two whole years because he wouldn’t sell out his entire group and for what he’s served us, he earned his spot right now.”

    Leona looked to the ground, staring at her feet. “He tried to kill you back when we were locked in the room with Leah.”

    The bar’s doors opened again, the sound of boots hurried into the main area before a man in a white suit with blond hair pushed through the group, stopping as soon as he saw Luke. He looked to Marshal before trying to shake off what he’d seen. “What is the meaning of this?”

    “Isaac, it’s great to see you again.” Marshal faked a smile. “Before you go on about how I wasn’t justified in my actions, I want you to know that Luke has known our location for the past month and a half. He hasn’t said anything because he was attempting to work out a deal with Elizabeth. If the deal had gone through, he wouldn’t have said anything for a pretty long time to come.”

    Isaac looked back to the group, a furious look on his now red face. “Can even one of you confirm this maniac’s story?”

    Grady nodded, pulling the paper out of his pocket and handing it to Isaac. “That’s the paper that Luke gave to Elizabeth. That’s the current address and a little later than the time he had written down. There’s instructions for how she should dress on the back.”

    Isaac flipped over the paper and then looked back at Marshal. “How can I be certain that this isn’t forged?”

    “It has Onyx’s logo on it. It’s faded but it’s there.” Grady spoke up again, making Isaac put the paper under a light and inspect it.

    Isaac confirmed the logo was there before looking over the group, then looking back at Marshal. “Do you understand the amount of damages you’ve caused?”

    “I don’t expect you to repair them after learning about what he tried to do and his flat out lying to you for an entire month and a half. I’d say I did you a favor by damaging them beyond repair so you don’t have to disassemble the augmentations yourself.” Marshal crossed his arms.

    “You’re both in the wrong, but I must confirm this for myself. Is Elizabeth here? What about your doctor?”

    “Elizabeth isn’t with us, but why would Luke need a doctor?” Milo jumped into the conversation. “Marshal only destroyed the mechanical parts and I don’t think machines can bleed, therefore he doesn’t need a doctor.”

    Isaac nodded slightly before crossing his arms. “All of you leave and stay gone. I’ll be dealing with Mr. Lowell on my own.”

    The group looked among each other before collecting their stuff and following Marshal out.

    Isaac kneeled next to Luke, quickly taking in the damage that Marshal had done. “Why did you let those fuckers go just like that?”

    “Only six of the eight were present. You have one last chance to give up their location before I terminate your programs and your employment, am I understood?”

  • edited September 2018

    Well, I feel like that could have gone better. I thought they were going to capture him or something, not expose him to Isaac. That was definitely a new side to Marshal, that's for sure. One thing is for sure, they need to move to a new location now, after all that.

    By the way, congrats on the job!

    6.1 - Vengeance Elizabeth looked at the letter in her hand before offering it to Grady. “I want to tell Marshal myself, you get

  • Hmmm, this talk between Elizabeth and Marshal did not go as well as I hoped. At the same time, I kinda should have expected him to be pissed, a bit at least. What I definitely expected was him giving Luke that savage beating. Can't really say he didn't have it coming though, even if I am certain this was not a smart thing to do. This is going to just cause more problems in the long run.

    6.1 - Vengeance Elizabeth looked at the letter in her hand before offering it to Grady. “I want to tell Marshal myself, you get

  • edited September 2018

    So, alright guys. I do have news for you and I am afraid they are not good. Imighthavebrokenit has informed me that she is currently going through a really bad time in her life. I won't go into detail, but things are very serious and she has to fully focus on dealing with a multitude of problems that came up for her recently. This means, there won't be any new parts for the time being, as I am sure you understand. At this early point, it cannot be said how long this hiatus will be, but I hope everyone is still going to be around by the time imighthavebrokenit makes her return. I'll see you around and I can really only hope that things will sort out for her in a positive way as soon as possible.

  • edited September 2018

    Wow, I hope everything goes well for her, and she can return soon. One good thing going for her now is that she got a new job. I always look forward to her story's parts. Plus, I learned something new about Imighthavebrokenit just now. I never realized she was a she. I guess that's the point of being anonymous, huh.

    So, alright guys. I do have news for you and I am afraid they are not good. Imighthavebrokenit has informed me that she is current

  • edited September 2018

    I'm back! As Tales mentioned, I do have a job now and I have a Monday thru Friday work schedule, so parts are usually going to be on the weekend or Monday mornings now. To make up for that, the parts should be relatively longer than they normally are. I also wanted to thank Liquid for posting the previous message for me, as I wasn't in a very good place at the time, but I'm back and truly better than ever.

    6.2

    After Luke’s latest run-in with the Voyagers, Isaac threatened to terminate his employment on the spot, but decided against it.

    That was until he talked it over with Zachary and they mutually agreed that it would be better to terminate Luke’s position. They claimed that Luke was a threat to them because he refused to give up a location he’d known for months.

    Isaac ordered Amanda to repair Luke’s arms and legs just so they’d function normally, but to remove any features that had been added as part of his job.

    Chelsea also had to talk to Luke before he left in order to erase his memories and insure that Amanda had done everything she needed to. He didn’t have much to say to her, just as he didn’t have much to say to Amanda.

    Chelsea seemed upset, which told Luke that she didn’t agree with the decision but she couldn’t override it, meaning most of the higher ups agreed with it. “I’m sorry they’re doing this to you. There was really nothing I could do to help.”

    “No offense, but I didn’t expect any less of a reaction from your dad. He has no reason to keep me around anymore and neither of us are benefitting from the things going on here.”

    “What do you mean he has no reason to keep you around anymore? There’s definitely still a use for Underground Operations.”

    “But not me specifically.” Luke crossed his arms. “This happened because Marshal chose an aggressive approach instead of a subtle one. If he had been subtle or the group showed any signs of going back into hiding, then I would be needed to track them down.”

    Chelsea seemed a bit confused by the statement, stopping the process of erasing Luke’s memories. “I’m sorry, an aggressive approach? We weren’t told anything about that, only that your progress wasn’t ideal.”

    Luke scoffed. “Not even man enough to tell the truth about why he’s terminating me.” He paused, contemplating on if he should tell Chelsea or not. “Don’t you find it a little odd that my limbs were completely trashed before Isaac decided to terminate me?” She nodded. “And he didn’t offer you any sort of explanation to that?” She shook her head. “My limbs were trashed because of Marshal Kennedy. I don’t know what you remember from your week with the Voyagers, but they’re picking battles over demonstrations.”

    “Did you fight back?”

    “A bit in the beginning.” Luke sighed, looking to the ground. “I was in the wrong and even if I have no respect for him, I understand why he was so pissed off. That’s all I have to say on it.”

    Chelsea resumed the process of erasing Luke’s memory, paying more attention to things as they passed on the screen. She grabbed her radio, hitting the button. “Amanda, I need you to come finish the process. An emergency came up.”

    Joseph Duke

    The group seemed to be torn in two over what Marshal had done to Luke.

    The people closer to him justified it and claimed it was what Luke had coming, even though Luke didn’t put up much of a fight at the bar. Most of the people who were there claimed the Marshal had gone overboard.

    Joseph and Milo were undecided on it and while Alyssa continued to claim that she agreed with what Marshal had done, there were times she didn’t seem certain of it.

    Marshal himself stayed quiet about it, though he very clearly felt no remorse for what he had done.

    Joseph could tell when someone was coming around based on Riley’s reaction. That, coupled with the tension in the group, made him panic as someone pulled up to the area that the group was staying in.

    That panic didn’t ease when he saw it was Chelsea Hampton. Francine said she had been around the group while he and Ethan were in quarantine and that she had a connection with Elizabeth.

    They could only guess that Elizabeth wasn’t why Chelsea was around today when she walked right past Elizabeth and confronted Marshal. “You need to explain to me what happened last night. Where do you get off attacking Onyx officials for no reason when you know very well that they’re just waiting to execute you?”

    “No reason?” Marshal dismissed Greg, who had pulled a gun on Chelsea. “Chelsea, you have access to Elizabeth’s memories and relationships since the day she was born, do I honestly seem like the type of person to attack without provocation? In fact, you know me personally.”

    “I met you a year ago and apparently things have changed. This isn’t even the first time you attacked Luke specifically.”

    He looked over the group and noticed their stillness as they watched, sighing before stopping his eyes on Elizabeth. “I’m sorry, I have no choice now.” He briefly looked at Milo before looking back to Chelsea. “In the two years Milo was there, Luke attacked him countless times because he refused to give up information on the group. When I was in the city for five months, he beat up on me every single time he saw me. Luke’s got his own history of unprovoked violence.” While he was normally pretty collected, Chelsea seemed to intimidate him a bit. “Luke knew of our location for a month and a half and never said a thing to Onyx. You already know that, but he would never tell you why he didn’t tell. Luke tried to set up a little proposition with Elizabeth where he would stay quiet about our location if she started an affair with him. When we went to the bar in her place, he just kept pushing it and I couldn’t handle it.”

    Chelsea took on a look of disgust before shaking it off. “Is there anyone who can back that up?”

    He nodded. “Milo, Joseph, Grady, Ethan, Leona, Samantha, Vincent, Horatio, Filip, Cyrus, and Elizabeth.”

    The people listed agreed before the group went silent, Alyssa breaking the silence. “We were told about how Marshal attacked Luke, but we weren’t given a reason. Milo told me what was going on before they left yesterday and that Elizabeth didn’t want anybody to know.”

    “That makes no sense.” Chelsea seemed to grow defensive. “Luke can’t stand Elizabeth and he’s completely aware that she’s married, why would he try to spark up a relationship with her?”

    Alyssa stood off the ground, dusting off her pants. “Because she’s the only other woman in this world that shares the same gene as you.” She quickly started talking again when she saw Chelsea getting ready to challenge her on it. “I worked at Onyx, had access to records that the Voyagers have no idea even exist, and knew Luke personally. I’m completely aware that he knows about the gene and that your father has been planning your marriage to Georgie for a lot longer than you’re aware of.”

    Most of the group didn’t know who Georgie Kenny was, but the ones who did know didn’t have a good opinion on him. Chelsea seemed a bit unsettled by the revelation. “My dad always told me that you weren’t very interested in the personal matters of Onyx. Were you looking through the confidential records the whole time?”

    She nodded. “I wasn’t the only one either. In fact, I’ve got a suspicion that the woman who taught me is the same one that was copying the records and nearly got Elizabeth busted for that.”

    Chelsea turned to Elizabeth. “That wasn’t you?” She shook her head. “Luke swore up and down that it was you.”

    “If he had given me a minute to explain myself, I would have told him that I was outright stealing the records instead of copying them. And since we’re snitching on each other, Leona has them now and only one of them is a copy because someone else left the copy in the records.” She paused. “Actually, the first time you and I died at the bar was among those records. That bar has cameras, so I’d recommend you check the records of last night before your dad gets rid of the evidence.”

    Joseph noticed Samantha and Cecilia sharing a look before Cecilia nodded and cleared her throat. “Your name is Chelsea, right?” Chelsea turned her attention to Cecilia and nodded. “I can’t say I know you personally, but you came here acting like you didn’t know what happened with Luke. What did he tell you?”

    “That’s not important.” Chelsea seemed to lower her guard. “I just need to know the truth.”

    Alyssa sat back down and Marshal motioned over to Grady. “Grady and Elizabeth have been telling the exact same story. Before you even accuse them of lying about it, I want you to recall your time here and how they interacted. They hated each other and couldn’t even stand ten minutes in the room together. They still don’t like each other so they wouldn’t spend the countless hours together that they would need to make a static story.”

    Chelsea looked over to Grady, waiting for his explanation. “Back when I was drinking more, I’d follow Elizabeth around just to see if she would make a mistake and anything major, I would tell the group. She went out onto the trail while Kyle had the baby and I followed about twenty feet behind her. I only stopped walking when I realized I was getting closer to her and there wasn’t much distance between us, so I hid and tried ro figure out what she was doing. I eventually saw Luke and heard him talking about how he knew where we were and then he gave her a letter. I honestly didn’t believe that Luke was here myself until she asked me if I knew the next morning.”

    “There’s an entirely different problem in what you just told me.” Chelsea paused. “First, what do you earn out of her doing something wrong? Second, where is the letter?”

    “Grady should have it. He’s the one who had it at the bar last night.” Leona finally spoke up, Chelsea’s attention not breaking from Grady.

    He checked his pockets before seeming to grow a bit nervous. “I know I had it, I just don’t know where I put it.”

    Cyrus looked frustrated as he quickly remembered what happened to the note. “You gave it to Isaac when he showed up and nobody thought to get it back.”

    Grady nodded, putting on a nervous smile as Chelsea’s glare stayed on him. “There’s your short answer, it’s either with your dad or still in the bar.”

    “That’s not what I wanted to hear.”

    “Can’t you just ask your dad for it?” It was starting to become clear that while Marshal and the people from quarantine were intimidated by Chelsea, Grady was downright afraid of her.

    Elizabeth adjusted her hold on the baby before she reached out to Chelsea, just barely touching her wrist. As soon as Elizabeth touched Chelsea’s wrist, the three of them acted as if there was an electric shock before they collapsed on the ground.

    Alyssa and Horatio quickly rushed over while Marshal took the baby, whispering something to them and then handing Whitlock to Alyssa. He and Horatio picked up Chelsea and Elizabeth before they went down the camping trail, Alyssa following after them.

    Alyssa Kowalska

    Marshal told them that they shouldn’t handle what was happening in front of the group. He only said that because he was almost certain that it was something that had to do with the gene.

    They went to the nearest bench on the trail before Marshal and Horatio put Chelsea and Elizabeth down, Marshal taking the baby to allow Alyssa to look over the women.

    Alyssa already knew Whitlock and Elizabeth were in pretty good health and she could only assume that Chelsea was as well, which pointed to it being something related to the gene.

    The three of them were completely still and quiet, their bodies barely showing any reaction to anything Alyssa did.

    It was only in the second time she was examining Elizabeth that she noticed something. “Marshal, does Elizabeth normally flinch when someone touches her neck?”

    “Yeah, she’s always been like that.”

    Alyssa walked over to him and touched the baby’s neck, getting no response. She tried finding a spot until she put him on his stomach and touched his back, immediately getting a response. “Horatio, look over Chelsea and try to find a spot that provokes a physical reaction. I’ve got something I want to try on her and Elizabeth before I try it on the baby.”

    Horatio did as he was told and went to look over Chelsea while Alyssa returned to Elizabeth. She already knew Marshal wasn’t going to like what she was doing, but she felt it was the only way.

    She put her hand around Elizabeth’s neck and started pushing down, getting an immediate reaction. Her eyes flew open and she quickly grabbed Alyssa’s arm, forcing it away from her.

    Alyssa quickly went to apologize before she looked into Elizabeth’s eyes and noted something. “Elizabeth’s eyes aren’t blue, right?”

    “She and Whitlock both have green eyes.” Marshal looked into Elizabeth’s eyes, freezing for a moment. “Chelsea has blue eyes.”

    Elizabeth seemed pretty dazed until she saw Chelsea laying on the bench. She raised her arms to look over them, her eyes stopping once she saw the ring on her finger. “What happened?” She sounded as if she had trouble speaking.

    “I’ll tell you once you tell me your name.”

    “Chelsea…” She pointed at Chelsea’s body. “That’s my body, but I’m in Elizabeth’s right now. Now explain to me what sparked this so we can fix it.”

    Alyssa took the baby from Marshal, applying a bit of pressure to the spot on his back. She stopped once his eyes opened, though the color of his were the normal green.

    “Before we do, I need to know about any sensitive spots on your body so we can wake up whoever’s in it.”

    She sighed, getting up and kneeling next to the bench. “I don’t know, just let me figure it out.”

    She eventually found that covering her mouth woke up whoever was inside. Alyssa noted their green eyes. “If I’m not mistaken, the three of you switched bodies.”

    Horatio seemed to study whoever was in Chelsea’s body. “I’m thinking Whitlock got Chelsea and Elizabeth got Whitlock. Chelsea had a bit of a struggle talking at first, but whoever is in Chelsea isn’t even trying.”

    “Agreed. That tells us that they’re restricted to whatever the original owner is capable of.” Alyssa crossed her arms, her eyes focusing on Whitlock. “If Elizabeth is really in Whitlock’s body, I’m almost certain she would have started talking by now if she could.”

    “If I can intervene, I’m pretty certain the switch happened because Elizabeth grabbed Chelsea. They collapsed right after that.” Marshal went to Elizabeth, handing her the baby. He seemed to pay a lot of attention to Chelsea while he was there. “Horatio is definitely right about who is in which body, though.”

    “We need to fix this before we go on.” Elizabeth reached out to Chelsea once again, grabbing her wrist before they blacked out again.

    Alyssa, Horatio, and Marshal went through provoking reactions from them again and verifying they were each in their own bodies before anything else.

    Whitlock immediately started crying before Marshal took him.

    Chelsea didn’t move from her spot on the bench. “I sincerely hope he’s not in as much pain as I am after that.”

    Elizabeth gave a nervous chuckle, sitting up. “I can feel myself on the edge of weaponization. Let’s not do that again.”

    “From what I remember, something like that was never supposed to happen.” Alyssa approached the two, her vision going between them. “I vaguely recall some details on the gene and David requested that there would be no body swapping, Isaac even agreed to it.”

    “So I believe the question now is whether the geneticist or the gene itself is going rogue.” Horatio backed away Elizabeth and Chelsea, looking to be a bit afraid.

    “The geneticist is probably the least likely person to turn her back on Isaac and that’s saying a lot since our entire group is made up of people who’ve turned their backs on Isaac.” Marshal seemed a bit distracted with trying to calm the baby down, but he was obviously still paying attention.

    Alyssa and Chelsea both acted as if they agreed with him. “The gene itself has been in a relatively idle state for the past twenty-four years and Chelsea and Elizabeth had no control over it by the time Whitlock was added into the mix, so I’m almost certain that the gene is at fault. That’s a problem, though. It’s only going to become more unpredictable and the only way to stop it is by sending all three of them back to the city. That’s not really an option for Whitlock and Elizabeth, so the only option is to just let the gene run itself.”

    The option didn’t sit well with anyone, but Alyssa could already predict the effect taking Elizabeth and Whitlock away would have on the group. There wasn’t much left to say about it, so they made sure the three were okay before heading back to camp and allowing Chelsea to leave.

    Things went silent with the group after Chelsea left, but it was clear that most of them had something on their minds.

    Marshal kept hold of the baby, only passing him to Elizabeth when he got up to address the group. He didn’t look happy and his voice sounded pretty drained when he spoke. “First, I want to issue an apology to the group. I risked the safety of every single one of you over a personal matter. That’s not going to happen again and things are going to be different in my leadership style as well as what I expect from all of you and what you can expect from me.” Alyssa noticed that Leona and Joseph, the two people who Marshal needed to consult on decisions, looked confused. “I’m splitting the group into two. Most of you will be going back to the motel with Leona and Joseph, a select few that I’ve already picked out will be going back to the bunker with me.”

    “And what’s making you come up with that decision?” Francine was quick to call out the decision, proving that it didn’t sit well with her.

    “Pierre is due to come back any day now and if he goes back to an empty motel and bunker, he’s going to mark us as inactive. That means that even if we find a way to prove to him that we’re still around, we don’t get the backup we need from him later on.” He paused. “Chelsea showing up is proof enough that we’re not safe here. She may be neutral with us, but she very well could be the only one who is.”

    Ethan didn’t seem to buy the story, but his dismissing it was to be expected. “Luke showed up at the bunker last time we went there, he went to the motel, so how are any of those places safer than what we have right now?”

    “That’s the thing, we have exactly nothing right now. Most of our stuff is still in the motel and we’re due to run out of supplies this week so we’re going to have to go back there anyways.”

    Alyssa could tell most of the group didn’t support the decision, but she had a feeling that the people she returned with were expecting her opinion on it.

    [Back up the decision]
    [Speak against it]

  • Great to see you back!!!!

    I'm back! As Tales mentioned, I do have a job now and I have a Monday thru Friday work schedule, so parts are usually going to be

  • [Back up the decision]
    I just think Alyssa might support Marshal's decision.

    Anyways, I'm glad your back!

    I'm back! As Tales mentioned, I do have a job now and I have a Monday thru Friday work schedule, so parts are usually going to be

  • edited September 2018

    (!) Voting is closed!

    Alyssa will back up the decision.

    This is honestly a bit shocking to me and I never really thought I would be making this type of post but there's word out there of Telltale shutting down, the forums likely to be shut down with it.

    I don't know for certain how this story is going to go on, but know that it will and I'm working with others to determine the best thing I can do for the story. That's going to be my number one priority and I don't believe I'll be making another post here until I have figured out what to do with it.

    If you'd like to provide your inputs on what should happen to the stories on the forums, please feel free to voice it here or PM me about it, I'd be happy to pass things along, hear your input, and offer my own input if requested.

    Edit: In case something does happen to the forums before I'm able to get word out, you can reach me on Discord (the chad kroeger#3650), a name I'm very proud of and show no shame in having.

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