foggy heads and future hearts

May? May, are you okay? May, please wake up…
I awoke to the now-familiar sight of a disheveled Constance kneeling over me, concern etched on his face that was probably more over our current situation than at my foggyheadedness. “Hmm?”
“Oh, good, you’re awake…” He sat back down normally, the sunlight streaming in from the narrow alleyway entrance. “Maxine’s refusing to wake up, still shattered from Friday as expected.”
The three of us were settled- if you could call sleeping on the ground next to a well-taken-care-of dumpster and hoping that nobody came and killed you “settled”- between two buildings in one of the main cities of Lilydaw, where we’d been staying the past few days, trying to subsist on our body fat and whatever we could get from food banks. “Constance?! What happened late Friday, exactly?”
“What do you mean? You were there. You know what happened. You experienced it.”
“I know, but it still all feels like a dream… I want you to recount the whole thing, just so that I know that my version of reality matches what actually happened.”
“Okay…” He sighed, leaning against the left side of the dumpster where him and I had been camped so that Maxine could have some privacy to do whatever she did when overcome with grief. Although it probably wasn’t grief, per se… I don’t think there’s a good word to describe the feeling of watching your girlfriend being taken away by an alien force that you’d been fighting against, almost certain that no matter what you do, you’re not going to see her again. “Well, after Emma got shot in her back, the whole facility erupted in chaos, rebels and enemy soldiers mixing and losing good track of each other, so there was a lot of shooting and killing. Maxine went into panic mode, attempting to fight her way to Allaketo so that she could strangle him with her own bare hands, but his forces kept her at bay long enough for them to load Emma into the starskipper. I don’t know what they did with her inside, although I’m guessing that they’re keeping her alive for future torture… and Maxine, seeing it take off, whipped out her wings- I bet you didn’t know she was an avian-human hybrid, aye?- and started flying towards it, and of course, I being the stupid little fudgebucket I was-”
I sat up. “Yeah, I remember that part, you just grabbing me and revealing your own wings and just taking off after her-” and I slapped him hard across the face, shock flaring in his eyes- “I’m scared of heights, you piece of crap. Shoulda thought about that one beforehand.”
“Don’t…” He rubbed his cheek where I’d slapped him, the faint beginnings of a bruise starting to form. “Don’t remind me. Anyway, we followed her and the ship for a while, she having found something to hold onto, but eventually they found out that we were following them, and they started shooting…” He paused, making sure Maxine was still asleep. “They started shooting, and we dropped down so that we wouldn’t get hurt. The landing was a little harder than we anticipated, seeing as Maxine was injured and I wasn’t even aware that I had had wings.”
Maxine stirred, and we shut up so that she wouldn’t have to be forced to relive the whole experience, the tracks of tears shed dried on her face. She was even more disheveled than the rest of us, her hair tangled from all the rolling she’d done on the ground and her refusal to take care of it along with her avoidance of anything that could possibly identify her as one of the future queens of Zorphia, assuming that the rebellion actually worked and that Allaketo and his forces had all been put down. Light clothes and a touch of makeup seemed to help a bit, seeing as she almost never used any of those in her personal aesthetic. “May… I think we’re going to need to get some help from somebody else. We’re stuck on a planet a million miles away from home- I never even thought that was possible until a few weeks ago- and we have no money, and we have an entire country against us. We need help.


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