Location: The Village >>> The Airstrip
Goodbyes over, Fiore walks out the door--Audra, her constant companion, her best friend, greets her once she steps outside. Fiore smiles the best she can, shouldering her responsibilities with a determination not often seen in fifteen year old girls. It's a little overwhelming, the leaving and the packing and everything in between, and Fiore has half a mind to fall apart again, but she can't, so she doesn't. Audra does not care, after all, so she should do the same and keep her composure. There is a time and place for emotions, and it has passed.
"No. I'll walk," Fiore says, pointing to her rolling suitcase. "It will be easier to pull this than for you to carry both." That's not exactly true--Audra possesses strength far beyond anyone would guess, but Fiore is going to do her part. They will walk side by side, like partners and soldiers. She needs to pull her weight, this time around. No running away,
she thinks, putting one foot in front of the other but letting her mind run free. The Airstrip is steadily and quickly approaching--the compound as a whole is not very large--so Fiore has only a moment to wait, wish, and worry. No longer is she waiting for opportunities to present themselves, ways for her to save lives. Now, she hopes she will be enough--and worries, for what if she isn't? It's almost a certainty, if it weren't for Audra's help and the rest of the team. Together, they can change the world! A naïve belief, she knows, but now it is almost obtainable, even easy. This is what they have worked towards for years--their entire life, even--and now they are being rewarded.
War is a strange reward, yes, but for them, it is exactly what they want. Fiore can help so many more this way.
The Airstrip, with its planes and taxis and personnel, comes into view. Fiore allows herself one deep breath, one second of wait-wish-worry, and then forges on ahead. Kiki is waiting, already boarding the ship that will take Fiore away from the Village and into the war. She glances at Audra, who hardly carries warm memories of her time here at all, and at Kiki, who craves adventures, and feels very much like the odd one out. The only one who wants, in part, to stay.
"Are you ready?"
Such a strange question! Fiore has been ready her entire life, and yet now she feels supremely lacking. But there is nothing left to prepare for. Everything is done and finished, from her time here to the research she's done. She can't stall any longer.
Fiore gulps and starts up the ramp to the Pegasus
. To war. To a new life and home. To chase her dreams, to change the world. Away from Father, yes, but at least Audra follows.