Home > The Fate of Ten (Lorien Legacies #6)(3)

The Fate of Ten (Lorien Legacies #6)(3)
Pittacus Lore

I’m exhausted.

I stumble. I can’t even feel my feet anymore, they’re so tired. I think I’m about to collapse. An arm goes around my shoulders and steadies me.

“John?” Sam asks, concerned. He’s holding me up. It sounds like his voice is coming through a tunnel. I try to reply to him, but the words don’t come. Sam turns his head and speaks to one of the other survivors. “We need to get off the streets for a while. He needs to rest.”

Next thing I know, I slump back against the wall of an apartment building lobby. I must have gone out for a minute. I try to brace myself, try to pull myself together. I have to keep fighting.

But I can’t do it—my body refuses to take any more punishment. I let myself slide down the wall so that I’m sitting on the floor. The carpet is covered in dust and broken glass that must’ve blown in from outside. There are about twenty-five of us huddled together here. These are all we could manage to save. Bloodstained and dirty, a few of them wounded, all of us tired.

How many injuries did I heal today? It was easy, at first. After so many, though, I could feel my healing Legacy draining my own energy. I must have hit my limit.

I remember the people not by name but by how I found them or what I healed. Broken-Arm and Pinned-Under-Car look concerned, scared.

A woman, Jumped-from-Window, puts her hand on my shoulder, checking on me. I nod to tell her I’m all right and she looks relieved.

Right in front of me, Sam talks with a uniformed cop in his fifties. The cop has dried blood all over one side of his face from a cut on top of his head that I healed. I forget his name or where we found him. Their voices sound far away, like they’re echoing down a mile-long tunnel. I have to focus my hearing to understand the words, and even that takes a colossal effort. My head feels wrapped in cotton.

“Word came in over the radio that we’ve got a foothold on the Brooklyn Bridge,” the cop says. “NYPD, National Guard, army . . . hell, everyone. They’re holding the bridge. Evacuating survivors from there. It’s only a few blocks away and they say the Mogs are concentrated uptown. We can make it.”

“Then you should go,” Sam answers. “Go now while the coast is clear, before another of their patrols comes through.”

“You should come with us, kid.”

“We can’t,” Sam replies. “One of our friends is still out there. We have to find him.”

Nine. That’s who we have to find. The last we saw him, he was battling Five in front of the United Nations. Through the United Nations. We have to find him before we can leave New York. We have to find him and save as many people as we can. I’m starting to come to my senses, but I’m still too exhausted to move. I open my mouth to speak, but all I manage to do is groan.

“He’s had it,” says the cop, and I know he’s talking about me. “You two have done enough. Get out with us now, while you can.”

“He’ll be fine,” Sam says. The doubt in his voice makes me grit my teeth and focus. I need to press on, to dig down and keep fighting.

“He passed out.”

“He just needs to rest for a minute.”

“I’m fine,” I mumble, but I don’t think they hear me.

“You’re gonna get killed if you stay, kid,” the cop tells Sam, sternly shaking his head. “You can’t keep this up. There’s too many for just you two to fight. Leave it to the army, or . . .”

He trails off. We all know the army already made their attempt. Manhattan is lost.

“We’ll get out as soon as we can,” Sam replies.

“You hear me down there?” The cop is talking to me now. Lecturing me in the same way Henri used to. I wonder if he’s got kids somewhere. “There’s nothing left for you to do here. You got us this far, let us do the rest. We’ll carry you to the bridge if we have to.”

The survivors assembled around the cop nod, murmuring in agreement. Sam looks at me, his eyebrows raised in question. His face is smeared with dirt and ash. He looks hollowed out and weak, like he’s barely standing himself. A Mog blaster hangs from his hip, hooked there by a chopped piece of electric cord, and it’s like Sam’s entire body slumps in that direction, the extra weight threatening to pull him over.

I force myself to stand up. My muscles are limp and almost useless, though. I’m trying to show the police officer and the others that I’ve got some fight left in me but I can tell by the pitying way they’re staring at me that I don’t look very inspiring. I can barely keep my knees from shaking. For a moment, it feels like I’m going to crash down to the floor. But then something happens—I feel like a force is lifting and pulling me, supporting some of my weight, straightening my back and squaring my shoulders. I don’t know how I’m doing this, where I’m finding the strength. It’s almost supernatural.

No, actually, it’s not supernatural at all. It’s Sam. Telekinetic Sam, concentrating on me, making it look like I’ve still got some gas left in the tank.

“We’re staying,” I say firmly, my voice scratchy. “There are more people to save.”

The cop shakes his head in wonder. Behind him, a girl that I vaguely remember rescuing from a collapsing fire escape bursts into tears. I’m not sure if she’s inspired or if I just look terrible. Sam remains completely focused on me, stone-faced, a fresh bead of sweat forming on his temple.

“Get to safety,” I tell the survivors. “Then, help however you can. This is your planet. We’re all going to save it together.”

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