Ren: Chapter 20, the Metal Pyramid
Collection: the Halleaux:AR
Chronicled by: Ren
the Metal Pyramid
Ren’s sword rested on a stand atop Petra’s desk. It had been two days since his death and the whole army was feeling the shock. A man who had once seemed untouchable now rested in the unjust clutches of death. Then again Petra thought is the death of any one of these soldiers fair? She sat in the darkness of her office, the only light emitting from a small lamp that sat on her desk, providing just enough light to see to the edge. Her steepled fingers pressed against her lips as she pondered the Rebellion’s next move. Just for a minute she wished Ren was there. He would have known what to do. He would have known where to go, how to precede, how to move forward. She closed her eyes, deep in thought. She heard a rustle near the direction of the door.
“What is it, Marius?” She asked, eyes still closed
There was yet another rustle, but no answer came. She opened her eyes. The sword, Ren’s sword, had vanished from the desk. The door was still firmly shut, as she had left it. From the dark corner of the office she heard a soft chuckle and something moved in the darkness. She pulled a handgun from one of the desk’s drawers.
“Show yourself” She ordered, pointing the firearm into the inky blackness
“I’d rather not.” Came a gravelly voice, “I’m afraid I look a terrible mess.”
Petra feared that the war had finally gotten to her. She knew that voice only too well. She was overly familiar with its sarcastic tones and sharp remarks. Too many times had she heard its gruff replies and dangerous solutions, but that was impossible. That voice was dead, gone, never to be heard again. With trembling hands she turned the lamp’s bulb towards the voice. A sliver of light shifted from the desk, illuminating Ren’s gaunt face.
“You know,” He remarked casually “, you should really turn on the rest of these lights.”
The overhead light flipped on, blinding Petra momentarily. Ren leaned against her bookshelf sword in hand. Daphne’s arrow still protruded from his shoulder, which had swollen to magnificent size. Petra stood and stepped towards him.
“I’ll not be haunted by yet another person I couldn’t save be gone.” She said forcefully
“Very well.” Ren said “I’ll just show myself out.”
Ren opened the door and walked out, still holding the sword. It was this action that caused realization to fall upon Petra like a wave of icy water. She ran out into the hallway and caught up with him.
“Just where do you think you’re going?” She asked
“Well considering that my haunting isn’t wanted, I think I’ll just collect my things and go.” Ren spoke in an even tone
“Well don’t think that I’ll let you go without having that shoulder fixed, it looks infected.” Petra offered
“I think that I could stick around for a bit, if you insist.” Ren replied
“And you’ll also need a hot meal.” Petra persisted
“Yes, perhaps that would be in order.” Ren stopped
“And you’ll also” Petra continued “Need to explain how you pull a stunt like dying, coming back, and not telling me.”
Petra shoved him. She radioed for Daphne over the command met her outside Ren’s room. Ren sat at the table while Petra explained the situation to Daphne. Ren got the distinct feeling that Daphne wasn’t too pleased with him either, as she wasn’t quite as gentle as she would have normally been, ripping the arrow unceremoniously from his shoulder muscle.
“It’s a good thing that was an actual arrow, not one tipped with an Aeon Dart, that could have paralyzed me and I could have actually died.” Ren said jokingly
Daphne made a face he couldn’t read and pressed some disinfectant into the wound.
“Jebispun, drunka onr drajl!” Ren roared
“Do I even want to inquire as to the meaning of that phrase?” Petra asked
“Not at all” Ren replied through gritted teeth
Daphne wrapped his shoulder tightly with a roll of gauze.
“There” she said unsympathetically “Keep it clean and it should be fine in a couple weeks.”
It took Petra mere seconds to gather all of the commanders and force Ren to explain himself.
“Very original” ValJean said sarcastically as he sipped his coffee
“So what now?” Marius asked “You did a pretty good job of dying, I don’t think the Authority is going to be interested in coming back to investigate. What are you gonna do now?”
“I think I’ll take some time off, spend some time in the outside world.” Ren replied
“The outside world? The one controlled by the Authority who think you’re dead, but would be more than happy to get rid of you if they found out you weren’t? That outside world?” Mech asked
“I never said what time I was going to be in. I think I’ll check out the two thousands, from what I know I think they were okay, certainly better than the present.” He smiled “I think I deserve a break after all I’ve done.”
“Do you plan on coming back?” ValJean asked
“I don’t know, I’m gonna miss you guys, the war, not so much.” He ran his fingers through his hair
“When do you leave?” Petra asked solemnly
“As soon as I pack a bag, I’ve already sent the other five across.” Ren cracked yet another smile “But since I’m your best soldier, it wouldn’t be right to leave you hanging, so I’ll leave a way to contact me in your office on my way out.”
Petra watched him walk away, her emotions a jumbled mess. Joy, sadness, hope, and anger ran rampant within her, but the strongest emotion was longing, the longing to be free as he was, to go somewhere and walk streets not obliterated by motars, to not need to hide, to look over her shoulder. It took Ren half an hour to pack. He met them just outside the base, where Petra had met him what seemed like ages ago. He was dressed in black jeans, a short-sleeved red shirt, and combat boots. A steel cross hung around his neck. An olive drab green duffel bag rested against his leg.
“All ready then?” Petra asked
Marius and Daphne stood next to her and stared at their comrade, at their friend. Mech and ValJean also made their way out to see him off. Ren shot them his usual cocky smile as he slung his bag over his shoulder.
“See you later. Y’all don’t go and get killed without me, I don’t want to miss the fun.” Ren walked off across the desert. Several hundred feet out he vanished in a flash of light. They stood and watched as the wind erased his footprints before going back inside. Petra walked down the hall on her way to dinner when she saw a bright flash of light come from within her office. She quickly opened the door and flipped on the lights. A box sat on her desk with an envelope. She smiled as she slit the envelope and smiled as she scanned the surprisingly neat handwriting.
Dear Petra,it read, I just wanted to send this to let you guys know I got here alright. I’m safe, I’ve found somewhere to stay, and I’ve made some new friends. Inside the boxe is a way to contact me. This is very important, DO NOT open the contents until you need me, it’s one use only. Tell everyone I said hi and that I’m safe. Love from the other side. Yours truly, Ren
P.S. Keep the sword for me
Petra opened the box to find a metal pyramid resting on a bed of packing pellets. MRT was etched into one side and enclosed in a single circle. What would have been the pyramids capstone was slightly displaced, but she resisted the urge to fix it. Ren had an eye for small details like that, if the capstone was like that, it was like that for a reason.
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