Many years ago(Right Before the Start of the Revolution):
This couldn’t be happening. All I could do was watch in terror as millions of the government’s people streamed into our base. My hands felt numb. Although all those days of training prepared for this day, I was in shock. I never knew it would actually happen, much less on this of all days. It was her birthday. I needed to give her present to her! Oh no… Suddenly, all I could think of was her. I grabbed the closest weapon I could find, which luckily was a gun. From the top of the building, all the little specks of bad guys looked like they could be squashed with my fingers. I kind of wished it was like that. Shaking my head, I rushed down the steps of the main building and began escorting the rebels to safety.
“Be careful, don’t trip…” I spoke softly to the elders and young children. As soon as all of them were ushered away, and not a moment more, the guards streamed in.
“HANDS UP!” I heard one of them scream. A million different scenarios ran through my head, almost all of them ending in me dying. I felt my pocket. A box, and inside, a ring. I couldn’t let this be my last day. Not when everything I held dear was going to be lost. I closed my right eye and scanned the view. I didn’t know why, but this always made me seem safer, more confident. With my right eye closed, I couldn’t see as much soldiers, and could lie to myself a bit. I closed my other eye, and then I dropped my pistol on the ground.
“Yes yes, that’s right.” I heard them speak, a guttural noise in the background of my thoughts. My thoughts of her. I managed to saunter up to the first of them, and forced a smile on my face.
“What do you want, soldier?” I grimaced, my eyes glaring into his. With a sudden flurried movement, he drew his weapon from his side, a baton which extended to the length of an anaconda.
“You… You are the leader?” He spoke. I swallowed hard. I couldn’t possibly tell him I was leading the army of rebels. I shook my head. He stared at me for a moment, and then without warning, he lunged forward, his tip pointed towards me.
“STOP!” I heard a familiar voice, and realized my eyes were clasped shut. When I opened them, I saw a familiar head of red hair in front of me. No… Not her of all people. Not her.
“What?” The guard had, luckily, stopped just in time, and just scraped her side lightly, only tearing the cloth. But still. Why would she do this? Wasn’t she supposed to be helping the other rebels? Unless the plan didn’t work… Unless they couldn’t take down the tower… Before I could tell her to step out of it, she had spoken already.
“You want the rebel leader, yes? Your orders are to find the leader and kill them?” She spoke in a confident tone. Despite this voice, I knew her soul was wavering underneath. She couldn’t keep this up much longer.
“Do you know him?” They questioned. The moment she nodded, I knew what she was thinking.
“No, she-” I barely started my sentence before she whirled around, and I saw the green eyes send me a warning. I tried to tell her that it was fine, that I would be fine if I was taken in, but she would have none of it.
“Who are YOU? You aren’t even part of my group,” she snapped, and I think the look on my face told the guards I was surprised too, so they believed her. “The leader of this group isn’t a him, it’s a her.” She spoke, regaining her posture. I opened my mouth wide. The rebels were all around us. Why weren’t they doing anything? The leader was sure to be killed, why? Why did they let the guards believe that she was their leader? It was me! The guards snickered, and one of them grabbed her chin.
“You? The leader? HA!” He laughed, and her eyes grew strong. I recognized that look. It was the look she got when she was about to do something dangerous. I was right. She kneed him right in the guts. If the situation wasn’t so dire, I would have laughed, but I couldn’t. Not now. Yelling, the guards circled around her, and threw ropes and cuffs around her. I opened my eyes wide, and was about to scream her name, when a hand clasped over my mouth.
“Do you want to die?” It whispered. I whipped around. Max. My most trustworthy officer, but also my best friend. His words were stern, but his brown eyes were soft with sympathy. But I didn’t have time for sympathy.
“I don’t, but I can’t just let her die…” I responded. By the time I turned around, though, the guards were gone. And with them was the love of my life.
Many years ago(During the Revolution):
This was it. I was going to die. All the thoughts about freedom, salvation, all the talk about living in the country, all the planning, all the dreams. All gone. It didn’t matter when you were dead. When you were dead, nothing mattered. No wishes, no love, no emotions. A void. An emotionless void. At first, I thought I was going to be scared. Well don’t get me wrong, I was scared, but not for the reasons I thought I was scared of. I didn’t think about me. I didn’t think about how the world and my ambitions were all going to end. I didn’t think about how the afterworld would be like, how desolate and alone and how dead I would be. No, I didn’t. Instead, I remembered him, and I was scared. I was scared he wouldn’t know how to make it on his own. I was scared he would be devastated. I was scared he would lose his will to live. But most of all, I was scared he would forget me. I know, it was a selfish thought at the time, but I couldn’t help but picture his face streaked with paint, or making silly faces when trying new food. I couldn’t help but picture our last goodbye. By the time they had brought me to the pavillion in which I, the leading rebel member, was going to be executed, I had but one thought in my mind, one sole face. I heard my fellow cellmates on the death row get called up. I squinted my eyes under the black blindfold. I had spent most of my life by myself, and didn’t know there were others like me. In a way, I suppose he saved my life. But in return, he stole my heart. I remember the day I saw him in the street corner, just after I had stolen the merchant’s watch. He saw me do it that day, I knew he saw me. But as the police rounded the corner, and I hid under the tapestry he was beside, I heard him lie, for me. Lie for a stranger whom he had never met. Lie, and get into the possibility of being in deep trouble. Lie, and still be able to get away with it. After the police had left, I crawled out of the beautiful art, and at that moment, I fell in love. Then all of a sudden, my name was called. I was brought up to the stage, where my blindfold was ripped off and thrown onto the ground. My eyes strained against the bright light they called justice, and they placed me on the pedestal. I looked up, finally, to see a sharp piece of metal glint on the surface, and to the side, a man holding a rope. It was funny, in a morbid sort of way, that me, a strong independent woman, was going to be killed by a mere rope. That little string of sorts was the only thing tethering me to this world. One wrong move and I would die. Or in this case, one right move for them. Curiously, I saw the man walk up to the biggest beacon and tie my little string of hope onto the watch clock. And then I saw. The moment the clock struck six, my rope would slip, and slice my head clean off the table. I smiled. Five more minutes. At least now, I could dream of him a little more. Before long, though, time ran out. I saw the hand move slowly towards three, then four, and I closed my eyes.
“I love you” I whispered into oblivion, and awaited my death.
Out of the shadows I was born. Into the light I was forced. Staying there wasn’t a choice. Now that I think of it, I never really had a choice. They had always told me that light was right, that as long as you were in the light, that was all the matters. They forced their beliefs on me, without me even knowing. I was actually happy, at least until I met her. That day, I saw her steal a merchant’s watch. From her scraggly clothes to her worn shoes, I could tell she was in trouble, that she was like me. After she had hid in the tapestry, the police came. Everyone had heart rate monitors, so there was no way I could lie and get away with it. There was no way, so why did I try? Why did I, the pure and unadulterated, want to help her? Maybe it was the look in her eyes as she slid beside me. Maybe it was the trust she had in even appearing before me. Maybe it was the sense of finally breaking the rules. Or maybe it was something more. Nevertheless, I did it. And it was the best decision of my life. I struck on a cool face in front of her, and I lied to the police. A miracle must have taken place, for the cops just walked away. But it wasn’t until after they were gone and I got a clear look of her face and eyes that I realized the reason why I had helped her. I had fallen in love. She was like a storm in the dark dreary night, bringing excitement but also insanity. She was like a single charcoal in a beach of white dust. She was also… She was also like me. She taught me how to lead, and was the person closest to my heart. If it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t have been the leader anyways. She didn’t belong here, as I was, except she knew about it. She knew she didn’t belong, and she wanted to leave. She hadn’t given up, as I had. She was the one that brought all the pain and truths into my world, the anger and madness, all the craziness. She dragged me into her world, full of deception and lies. And I thank her. Until I met her, every day was without meaning, just to survive and not be singled out. But she was the beacon of hope I wanted, I needed. Now was my time to help her. I notched the gleaming red arrow on the bow. It was a beautiful and exotic, and also the last thing I would ever touch.
“Never use this,” I remembered what the seller had said, “Unless you want to die. This arrow not only causes an immensive explosion, but the archer of the arrow needs to use his own life force to send it out. Only use it if you’re sure must you use it.” For her. For her. For her. That was my mantra. That was what kept me going. After all, she saved this life, and so this life was hers. I aimed it at the gleaming white tower. With this, she would be saved. With this, she could be happy again. I could almost imagine her smile again, lighting up as it had the first time I saw her. Like the time we painted rebel signs on the wall, when the paint had somehow ended up on my nose. Like the time we finally ate a food we thought we would love together, and how it tasted terrible. Like the last time we saw each other. I took a deep breath and aimed, feeling a tear escape the confines of my eyes. I remembered her face, soft with kindness even with all the war happening beside her.
“I love you…” I whispered, and let the arrow fly. Despite all the death and betrayal, even in all this confusion, I was grateful. I was happy. I smiled. Now she would be safe. I had done all I could. It was no longer in my hands. All I could do was hope…
I felt nothing. I should have felt something, sadness maybe, regret? But there I was, lying on the ground, waiting for my death, feeling nothing. Then I remembered. The clock. The clock must have already struck six. But why was I still thinking? Why could my brain comprehend anything and turn them into thoughts? Ah, maybe it’s like they say. I had around six seconds to look around and register that I was fully dead. I shouldn’t have been able to physically feel anything. But what’s this? I felt… I felt an aching pain on my feet. My feet? Was my six seconds over yet? I didn’t want this anymore. I didn’t want to feel like I was alive again, and then in turn have even that hope ripped out of my lungs breath by breath. I didn’t want to feel sadness again. But this was different. I manage to actually force open my eyes, and scan the area. Now that I was most certainly sure I was not dead or hallucinating, since my foot was in tremendous pain, I was curious. A large piece of the pillars had managed to wedge itself in between me and the guillotine’s blade, and everything around me is in shambles. Everything. All the guards were dead, all the people were dead, everyone. I looked at my foot. Twisted beneath a small chunk of the ceiling, I was a lucky survivor. There were no others. Ironically, the guillotine itself shielded me from the falling bits of plaster and marble. I was grateful. But what caused this? I looked at the trail of disaster, and saw one single arrow lodged in the wall. And then suddenly, I want to die all over again. For I had seen that arrow before, packed into the quiver on his back. I had seen it and wondered why he had never used that arrow. I had seen it and asked him many times, and many times he wouldn’t answer me. I was totally and utterly in shock. This arrow. It wasn’t until now that I had recognized it. It was one of it’s kind. I was said that this arrow had lived a long life, and that the maker had made it out of spite and revenge. It was able to cause a massive area of attack, and kill dozens of people, but it also took the archers life. I slowly trudged over to the forsaken arrow, and pulled it out of the crack. I stared at it, and it was only then when my tears suddenly overflowed. It was him. It was the very same boy I had given my heart to, it was the boy who had saved my life before. This time, he had saved me, but at what cost? His life? I cried and held the arrow tight. There was nothing left for me in this world. There was nothing left for me anywhere, but maybe in death was where I could meet him again. At least that would be better than living alone again. I looked at the arrow full of hate and betrayal, and I pointed it at my heart. Suddenly, something fell off the end of the arrow. A single feather. I picked it up, and saw, in his writing, a long note. Siena, I read, my tears falling down faster. My dear, dear Si. Time is running out. I need you to know I love you. From the day I met you until now. But listen. My life is forever yours, understand? You saved me, and so this life is forever indebted to you. You must not do anything rash, though, just remember, how would I react? Yes, maybe in this life we can’t be together. But the next one, or even the next. I would wait an eternity or more, if it could mean I could be with you. Please promise me, Sienna, you won’t hurt yourself. I’m sorry I couldn’t say bye properly, but then again, this isn’t really my final goodbye. I’ll see you in another lifetime for sure. I promise. I love you. Until then, though, promise me you’ll wait for me too. I grasped the note tighter around my fingers, my tears blurring my surroundings. I could almost feel his arms around me once more, almost feel the warmth flood my body. Almost. I grasped the hilt of the arrow and etched his name and mine into the stone wall. Finn and Sienna. I was crying, so I couldn’t tell what I had written, but I was sure it was right. I let the arrow fall to the ground as I whispered slowly, then louder, until the halls empty of life filled with my voice.
“I promise… I promise. I promise. I… I PROMISE, FINN I PROMISE”
Many Years Later (After the Revolution):
On a clear spring day, a girl walked into the remains of a great architectural building which exploded on some phenomenon. She sat on the ground and looked around, and after a while, started dreaming. In her dreams, a girl with fiery red hair and a boy with silver blonde hair were dancing. They flew across the ground that she herself was sitting on, and glided over the tangles of moss and weeds. As they danced, though, the world began to shine. The broken remains turned into a grand ballroom, and the girl and boy with tattered clothes grew into gowns and suits. This happened until they themselves seem to change, and glow, until finally the music stopped and they drew close together. Leaning in, the dreamer could almost hear them say each others names. Si…She heard. Si? Si what? Finn… Fin? Finish? Try as she might, she couldn’t understand. At last, they bowed into each other, almost about to kiss, when suddenly a crack sounded. Jolting awake, the dreaming girl looked around. A twig had fallen. The sun was still shining, and the whole dance seemed like it had never happened. She didn’t know if it was a dream or if it was fake. She couldn’t decide. As she turned away to head back home, though, she caught a glimpse of writing in the wall.
“Finn… And Sienna…” As if on cue, twin butterflies flew out from her surroundings, as if doing a little dance, until they serenaded their way across the field and into the trees. “Sienna and Finn…”