Audrey's breath came fast as she and Troy slid around the corner, hiding in the shadows as they went. While she hadn't pushed for Troy's diet, she was definitely grateful he'd gone on one so he wasn't so...chunky and noticeable.
"We're almost there," she breathed, painfully aware of how loud her voice sounded--even as low as it was--in the metal corridor of the ship.
Troy nodded, his eyes slightly wider than usual.
Audrey wasn't sure why she was so nice to Troy--he wasn't cute, he told corny jokes, he wasn't all that stealth or fit, and he wasn't cool. But there was something about him that drew her to him. It bugged her that she didn't know what. Audrey had always been someone to know what was going on, and why. But not this time.
The two of them carefully made their way down the corridor, feeling exposed and knowing that the guards could see them at any moment. Then it would all be over.
Footsteps gradually grew louder as a guard approached the corridor. Audrey instantly leapt up into the air and spread her legs out wide in a split, holding herself suspended between the two walls. Troy awkwardly tried to imitate her move, and Audrey sighed inwardly. There was no way he was going to make it up.
And if he did, there was no way he was going to stay up.
Audrey felt fear make her heart pound faster as she closed her eyes and desperately prayed that the guard would just keep going.
"He's gone; you can drop now," Troy hissed.
Audrey, relieved, let out a breath she didn't know she'd been holding as she dropped down onto...Troy?!
"I said you could drop down, but not on me!" Troy complained noisily.
"Shut up!" Audrey snapped, her cheeks flushed. She brushed a lock of deep golden red hair away from her ear and strained to listen for any sound of the guard returning. There wasn't any.
"Flashbacks of my life had finally stopped passing in front of my eyes," Troy grinned much like a lopsided, obese bulldog puppy. A lopsided, chubby, just-off-of-a-diet bulldog puppy she corrected herself.
"Shut up!" she hissed again, to cover up the grin that was trying to break free across her face.
As usual, Troy knew what she was doing. Thankfully, he didn't talk any more. He wasn't stupid. Well, some of the time he wasn't,
The two of them turned at the end of the corridor, and Troy fell into step behind Audrey as she made her way toward the bridge of the damaged ship.
"So how do we plan to get the core of the mainframe again?" Troy questioned.
Audrey sighed. Troy was just trying to make conversation, but he didn't seem to grasp that this wasn't the time for conversation.
Sensing what she was thinking, Troy immediately--but urgently--said, "I honestly don't remember."
"Well, then, too bad. You weren't a part of it to begin with except as a target so that they'll focus on you instead of me," she responded dryly. She almost expected Troy to respond with his usual comment about "Where's the soft side of you?" but it never came. She was almost a little disappointed.
As they turned the corner, Audrey froze, her eyes locking on the small orb in front of her. She knew that if she were to touch it, she would instantly be under the control of whoever controlled the orb.
Of course, they didn't always come shaped like orbs. Sometimes they were watches or blade staffs, sometimes headbands.
"Troy..." she began.
"Cool! It's a light!" Troy's hands closed around the orb, and Audrey's world started spinning as horror clutched at her stomach.
"Troy!" she screamed.
She could hear the guards coming, but that didn't matter. All that mattered was Troy. He was standing there, like a zombie, just staring at her, freaking her out. Tears were falling down her face as she looked desperately behind her to where a dozen soldiers were marching towards her. She couldn't take Troy with her.
No. She'd have to escape without him. It broke her heart, doing this, but she had no choice. In a way, she was like Troy. Someone else dictating her moves, wiping out her options, manipulating her in such a way that she had no choice but to do what It wanted...
There was only one person Audrey knew that would take Troy from her. It had all been a set up--the information, the gear, the blueprint of the ship...she should have guessed that Jolie's sudden kindness was a facade.
Anger boiled up inside of Audrey as she turned and ran.
Troy, I'll come back for you. I promise you that, she vowed. And you, Jolie...I'm coming for you. And I won't have mercy.