The Turn

“ Midnight go find Dastan” crystal said.

Herring the unease in her tone the dragon led to his feet and took off to find Dastan. Tempast close behind him The dragons flew high over head watched as crystal and Samuel headed to Anna’s room. He searched the ground and sky for Dastan.

“ this way” crystal said leading Samuel to Anna’s room. They walked through the lobby to the other side of the hotel to Anna’s room. She knocked on the door. “ Anna do you want to build a snowman” she called.

There was no answer. Soon it became evident that Anna was not in her room. Then Crystal and Samuel both heard the sound of dragons chittering and upon investigating would find Dastan perched on the roof of the resort with Midnight.

It was at this point that they would see Noriko and Yasuhiro coming up the walkway towards the hotel. She stopped and looked to Crystal. "Looking for Anna, I assume?" Noriko said. "I am too. Things have gone awry... And I believe she may be in grave danger."

As if in response, Dastan let out a roar and took off into the air, heading north. It was clear that the Dragon knew where his rider was. Noriko nodded to the others to follow the dragon.

----

Anna was happy. Maybe "happy" wasn't the right word but she was enjoying herself. She and Finn walked along the paths on the grounds of the resort, enjoying the beauty on display be it the lush garden they were in or the amazing fountains they kept passing. She was just glad to be with someone who actually seemed to give a damn. Finn was smiling too, and he seemed to be enjoying her company. She knew this tryst was just that, short-lived and nothing truly special beyond the company they provided one another, but right now it was better than nothing.

Anna and Finn soon found themselves in a secluded grotto with a large fountain and benches to sit at. A thick canopy of trees blocked out the sky and filled the area with the smell of flowers and foliage. They took a seat and just marveled at the sight. Then Anna sank into Finn's shoulder, he put his arm around her and she smiled.

"Thank you. I needed this... It's just been so hard for the last... four years..." She rolled her eyes.

"I know. Being a dragoon is hard work... always fighting, always wondering if you won't get back... making enemies..." Finn said his hand slowly began to squeeze her shoulder.

"The worst kind too." Anna said. "Scum... monsters..."

"Yes... monsters..."

She felt the prick of the needle and jumped out of the bench almost immediately. Her hand went to her sidearm, which wasn't there, she'd stupidly left it with her tac-link... It didn't matter, her entire body went numb almost instantly and she fell into a heap on the ground. Her eyes darted around, she saw Finn get up and loom over her.

"Wha... what..." Anna tried to utter but whatever he'd injected her with was making it difficult to speak. She was conscious though, just unable to move.

"Nirganji... Little barbed bastard that likes to swim these waters..." Finn said as he brandished the small injector he'd had hidden on his ring. "Barbs have this venom that paralyze you but keep you awake. A lot of people on Clarke Island die from drowning because they sink to the bottom and can't swim up..." Finn shrugged. "I figured it was a fitting choice... but you're not going out that easily I'm afraid... Jhonen needs to learn that he can't have fun... not without consequences... And he is so fond of his young girls... you can't keep a good father down it seems..." Finn chuckled. "You will be an example to him... And you were so easy to bait... Were you really that hard up? I do admit you were a very good lay... I'm gonna walk crooked for a month after the shit you did to me... I will remember you fondly... And you will burn brightly before the end..."

Anna could barely feel the tears in her eyes. She'd been played. Like a goddamn fiddle. And now she was going to die... she was going to die alone..

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