Kuebiko; Nodus Tollens
Posted June 5th, 2017 by Zelda
in a perpetual predicament
A/N: ahaha, this is a week late. but it is also 18 notebook pages long, which is nearly twice my average, so there.
I have a question: how do you all feel about Isaiah and Acid character-development-wise? I was re-reading some *ahem* all, of Kuebiko and I thought that there was a lack of development. Do you think I should add more, or...?
Definition: Nodus Tollens; the realization that the plot of your life does not make sense any more.
Thank you for taking the time to read Kuebiko!
The next day we get news on Acid. I'm working with Jedediah on finding people without pictures when a tall, lithe man bursts into the mess hall. Sweat is thick on his bald head, it drips down his hooked nose. I recognize him almost immediately as Mahalalel. Jedediah often has me search for him, there hasn't been a lesson yet that I haven't been told to locate him by staring at a sketch of his face, or a visualization in my own head. Despite finding his blip frequently, the blue dot fades as quickly as those of the rebels I pass in the hall.
"We found Acid." He gasps.
All at once every person in the mess hall surrounds him like a flash flood, Jedediah and I are among them. We all want to know where Acid is, and how we're getting him back. Mahalalel holds up his hands. "Jihad is coming up with a plan now, that's all I know. I need Jedediah, is he in here?"
"I'm here." Jedediah calls. He shoulders through the crowd, as he does he announces, "The rest of you stay put, I or Jihad will come back to tell you what's happening."
There are mild protests from some, but for the most part we are too excited by the news to resist.
I return to the table I had been sitting at before and sit. The room is abuzz, and so is my head. I squeeze my eyes shut and try to block out the blips. That's another thing Jedediah and I have been working on. When I told him that accumulating too many dots gave me headaches, he immediately had me start trying different ways to remove dots. The best solution we've found so far is for me to concentrate on a single blip, and simply will it to fade faster. Unfortunately, that route takes a long time, and by the time I finish fading all the blips, I already have a headache. I pinch my nose briefly and finish erasing a handful of blips. I won't waste time removing them all, just enough to dim the map to a managable level.
When I open my eyes again, I find the crowd has dispersed somewhat. A few rebels make their way back to the kitchen to resume cooking, while the others spread out throughout the room. The air is abuzz with chatter. I wonder if Isaiah and the others have heard the news yet, all three of them are posted out at the buildings today. Mercer's shift wasn't supposed to be until later, but the rebel who was signed up for this morning is badly concussed and hobbling on a sprained ankle, so Mercer agreed to fill both watches.
The table rattles, alerting me to the presence of another rebel. I glance up to see a stocky guy sitting two seats down, standing beside him is a girl with long, braided hair. They both look strikingly familiar.
"Hey, it's Zyair, right?" The guy says.
"Uh, yeah." I answer, still trying to place them. He flashes a smile full of crooked teeth.
That jogs my memory. A disbelievingin works it's way up my face.
"No kidding." I say, "You must be Yvonne then," I turn to the girl, "Sorry I didn't recognize you."
Ryan and Yvonne; these guys are Calixa students. What are they doing here? Besides the obvious. How did they get here?
"You're hardly recognizable yourself," Yvonne replies. Her voice is soft and her tone is light and lilting as if she's joking, but she's telling the truth. "You know, I never got the chance to say how sorry I am about your mom and sister." Yvonne brushes her dark hair out of her eyes, her mouth is shaped like a rose petal, spilling deceptively chilling sentences. Her words hit me like a glacier to the chest. It's like my last day at Calixa all over again. Mina and Mama. I'm never going to see them again.
"Oh, I'm so sorry, I didn't meant to bring that up, it just sort of bumbled out." Yvonne rushes to apologize. I want to tell her it's fine, that I understand. But I can't. I bite my lip to keep tears from spilling down my face and lower my head to stare at my lap. I need a minute to get a grip, that's all.
"Crazy meeting you here, ny?" Ryan changes the subject. He gestures to the knots of rebels clustered around the room. "Especially at a time like this."
"Aye." I agree.
"Do you know the guy they're talking about rescuing?" He asks. I grimace.
"Aye," I say again, "Acid's on my team."
"Wow." Ryan whistles. one look at Yvonne's crumpled brow and it's obvious they're both thinking the same thing: This guy cannot catch a break. But Zaya and Raleigh are way worse off than me on this one. Acid was their friend long before he was mine.
"When did you two get here?" I ask, changing the subject again.
"Oh, just yesterday night." Yvonne says. That explains why I haven't seen either of them around the base.
"Is Mercer here too? You and him vanished at the same time." Ryan said, craning his neck to search the cafeteria. Yvonee scrunches her nose.
"The whole school kind of assumed you had run off and Mercer went with, you know." She says. I nod. It makes sense for people to think that, after all, it's pretty much what happened.
"Merc's here too, he's out doing a job right now."
"Ah, see." She elbows Ryan, "told you." Ryan sighs and runs his fingers through his short brown hair.
"She bet me five beads you two would be in the same place if we ever saw you again." He says with a little shake of his head. "I should have known better than to bet against you." He says to Yvonne. She smirks triumphantly.
We lapse into silence after that. I finger the bracelet I found in the storage room. It's leather is smooth and the know acts as a good bit to fiddle with. I still think there should be a trinket or something hanging of the knot.
"There have been a lot of fires." Yvonne says out of nowhere. She has moved to perch on the edge of the table. The cloth pants she's wearing swish around her ankles. She picks at a strand of hair that has escaped the braid draped over her shoulder. "Since you two left, three more buildings in the Calixa district burned." Her gaze is distant. I haven't been gone that long. Those three plus my apartment building makes four in the past two weeks, we normay have as many in a two month period.
"The stiffs finally started looking into the fires when the third building burned down. They found residues or something at the scene." Ryan explains.
"Perchloric acid." Yvonne fills in, "All around the breakers. They checked and found te same thing at two other sites," She pauses as if weighing her words.ip of her tongue rests on her upper lip. "One of them was your apartment."
It was deliberate, then.
"So there's an arsonist on the loose." I muse, keeping as neutral a face as possible. Out of the blue, Rico's warning returns to me.
Don't trust the rebellion.
"Seems so." Ryan nods. I thumb my bracelet uneasily.
"Well, it was bound to happen eventually." I say with a forced laugh. Yvonne ad Ryan throw in their own weak chuckles. Thankfully, we're all saved from making more awkward conversation when Jihad comes barging into the mess hall. He is followed closely by Mahahalel and Jedediah. The rebels quickly fall silent as the sight of their leader. Jihad comes to a table at the center of the room, the rebels gather around him. He takes a moment to cast a sweeping glance at all of us. His hands rest on the table.
"Okay, rebels, here's what's happening."
< haha this computer hates me =-=. The rest of the chapter will come later. >
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