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7 mins 279 7 mins 279

She entered the white walled room and waited. The chief, seated in front of her with a desk full of papers looked up to her and beckoned her to sit down on the lone chair in the centre. “It happened again, the massacre. A town not far from here was the latest victim. Children, women, the old- they left no one…” he said in a tone filled with a grief. Regaining composure, he said “It’s time we taught these miscreants a lesson, once and for all. We have information that they’d be attacking the adjoining city- we have silently evacuated most of the citizens and instructed those not willing to leave to hide, their lives are upon you. Now you understand this mission is extremely dangerous and I had to consider a lot before taking this step”. Before she could ask what he was talking about he spoke authoritatively, “You may harm yourself and move to the teleportation room. You will find the others in the field. It’s been a long time and I guess you need some fresh air" he smirked. “Good luck”

She nodded and moved towards the teleportation room. The armoury was on the way. She picked up her blade- 22 inches of ruthless steel. It had won her glorious battles, defeated vicious enemies, but then he’d been there too. As she gripped the hilt, memories rushed to her head. They were the perfect team. It felt as if they both knew what the other's next move would be, held each other’s backs- everything had been perfect, till that fateful night. She sighed, pushing the thoughts away and fighting her tears back, reminding herself of the task at hand.

She moved to a room with plain white walls and a huge window, looking out towards the city. She could see it at a distance- smoke and fire coming up from that distant village. It dawned upon her that the chief’s daughter used to live there. She must have died, no wonder he sounded so sad.

The room started to melt the roof opened up and the window disappeared as the walls melted like wax. Soon she stepped out of the square white patch of what was left of the room and onto the street. Forlorn and silent- the city spoke of an impending massacre- but this time it won’t be the innocent people. Not a leaf moved as she stepped lightly across the street to move towards the main road, where she was told the others would arrive. Staring at the houses around her- most of them with curtains drawn and lights out or locked down. She spotted the peaking head of a kid, his eyes terrified as he realized he’d been spotted. She put her hand on her heart and a warm green glow emanated from her hands. She signalled him to shut his window. He nodded, and quickly drew the blinds. She reached the main road in a few minutes

As she looked up the other side of the road, her heart skipped a beat. It was him. Pain pierced her heart; their hearts. He felt it too, seeing her after such a long time. Yet there she was, her eyes as amber as ever. Their hearts raced in unison as they moved towards each other.

It had been a long day at work- killing stealthy assassins was not everyone’s piece of cake. They’d been fighting dead into the night- but they weren’t tired- they were never tired when working together. He thrust her sword into the last of them, pulling it out and pushing him into the deep ravine. As he wiped his sword, they grinned. Another task complete, it was time to rejoice. As they walked hand in hand towards the teleportation pad, they didn’t spot one of the mortally wounded figures stumble towards his crossbow. As the walls of the pad started rising, an arrow pierced him right in the lungs. He fell into her arms as they were being teleported, gasping as she gaped, too stunned to act. He was rushed into the recovery room. She could only watch them take his limp body away as she stood aghast.

She couldn’t believe she wasn’t alert enough to save him. She blamed herself. Guilt haunted her for a long time. She could never get herself to show her face to him, withdrawing herself from duty, she did her best to stay away from recalling the incident. Touching swords would upset her, but she learnt to get over it with time. She started teaching new recruits so that she could be far away from the main base. As the years passed memories faded but she still didn’t trust herself for being able to protect anyone. At the same time, he recovered only to find her gone- he looked everywhere but couldn’t find her.

A low rumble brought them back to the present. If they'd been paired, the trouble in hand had to be grim. They drew their swords as the rumbling increased. A cloud of dust rose in the distance. A score of black hooded men ran through the dust. As they closed in towards the pair, for a moment his hand touched hers. Tiny green sparks flew from their fingers. They looked at each other and nodded.

Soon there were clashes of weapons. As the familiar ring of metal against metal sung in her ears, she smiled, after a long time. She’d been yearning this for ages yet was so afraid, afraid that the horror of not being able to save a friend would haunt her and distract her. As she thrust her blade into one soldier about to stab him in the back, he silently thanked her with a curt nod, her amber eyes fired up. They knew no fear now. They mercilessly ripped the army apart as the cries of the innocents these soulless had killed rung in their ears.

As the last enemy fell into the pile of mutilated carcasses, they stood there, panting. There was silence, only the wind blew. As she wiped the blood of her cheeks, they shared a moment's glance. A moment long enough for the pain of separation to be realized. A moment long enough for his brown eyes to search for the long lost years in her amber ones, long enough for the two to forgive each other. His eyes set on hers, longing for reunion. As they moved towards each other for a brief moment, forgetting everything else, she felt something pushing her back. They looked at each other in bewilderment. As she tried again, a sudden force threw both of them back- back into their wheelchairs. Their world- hitherto burning and bloody, melted into the white walls of the recreation room of the hospital; their torn jackets into the loose polka-dotted robes. The nurses adjusted their wheelchairs slightly, so that it faced the huge window.

“I don’t even get why we bring them here every day, they don’t seem to enjoy this place a lot” said one of them

“I don't know, the doc just keeps telling me to bring them here, I mean look at them! They just keep staring blankly into space!”she pointed at them, exasperated.

“They need fresh air” she said, trying to imitate the doctor as the second nurse giggled. “Whatever” she said, rolling her eyes. “I'm just doing as he says, otherwise he'll raise the roof for not following instructions.” She stared down at her newly manicured nails. Bright gleaming red- like blood.

“Well maybe they don’t express, but they might be enjoying the view you know” the other nurse meekly suggested “or perhaps they get this sense of peace here, you know-”

“Oh c’mon, they’re freaking psychos, silly. Now you don’t start acting like one” the first one cut it. “Let’s go, I think it’s our lunch time”

As they wheel-chaired the two to their rooms, they crossed each other. Their hands met, tiny green sparks flew as their fingers touched, sparks only they could see.

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