"Miss Matheson," god did she hate that seedy voice, almost as much as she hated the face the voice belonged to. Charlotte turned to face Captain Neville, blue eyes narrowed warily at the dark skinned man. "I have some… unfortunate," she didn't miss the smirk that twitched at the corner of his lips, "news regarding the Generals and your mother. Come with me please."
She rose quickly from her place by the fire, stalking towards him, "what happened to then? Are they okay?" She demanded, fists balled at her sides while her mind went from scenario to scenario, replaying them over in her head.
"Come with me," Neville repeated, his hand suddenly on her arm and yanking her forward, steering her further from the fire and the rest of their garrison. "Your mother and uncle have been branded traitors of the Republic, I am to question you to determine whether you knew of their plot or not." A shiver ran up her spine.
Tom Neville wasn't a particularly skilled interrogator, he didn't use skill or decisive methods to extract the information he needed. Infact, he had only ever successfully extracted needed information from three rebels in his time with the Militia. He used brute force, often beating prisoners to death before they could speak.
"On whose orders?" She didn't let her voice waved, didn't let him see any fear. Neville seemed the type to crave fear. "Bass would never let you interrogate me," or she hoped he wouldn't. From the flash of anger and disgust in the Captain'§ eyes, she felt a mild sense of relief that Sebastian had not actually given the order. "Lay a hand on me, Captain, and Sebastian will kill you, but first he will kill Jason and Jullia. I don't know what happened, but you will give me three men and I will be returning to Philadelphia to discuss things further with him." They were brave words for someone being shoved down into a rickety old chair, and she was silently praying to whatever God there was, that he would prove to have at least a sliver of a brain.
"I don't think I will," was all she got before her vision danced with the dark, her cheek lighting up with excruciating pain. Blood spilled from her mouth, her teeth having sliced into her inner cheek from the force of the punch. After a moment, a glob of that blood found its way onto the sneering dark face looming over her. She wasn't entirely sure what happened after that, her memories clouded by pain and darkness and blood, but when she came to, her entire body ached. She could feel the blood still trickling from her nose, and the gash over her right brow had blood leaking slowly around her eye, causing her eye to burn and her vision to grow fuzzier and fuzzier until she couldn't see anything at all from it. But with her left, she could just make out the form of Tom Neville, crumpled to the floor with blood trailing from his own temple, Jason standing over him with a look of panic and determination.
"Jason," she croaked, voice hoarse and strange to her own ears. Dark brown eyes rose to her, and that was the last thing she remembered.
The second time she awoke, the sky was bright with the morning sun, a canopy of leaves and limbs doing little to block out the rays. Charlie moaned and rolled, turning her head to try and hide from the brightness.
"Hey kid," she bolted up, her eyes meeting with the exhausted face of her uncle and bitter face of her mother. "Try not to move too much, Neville did a good number on ya. You're lucky Nipples was there, or you'd have been dead." She simply found herself blinking stupidly at the man, fingers twisting through the dew covered blades of green beneath her. Birds screamed, their shrill calls echoing through her mind as she tried to process.
Miles gave her a moment, his eyes never leaving hers. "What did you do?" She rasped, gaze finally leaving him to search for a familiar slop of gold. "Where is Danny?" She didn't miss her mother's flinch or the sigh from Miles. "Where is my brother?" She demanded once again.
"Sebastian killed him," Charlie had heard a lot of bad shit. She had heard her mother scream and shout and fight against the worst men she had ever met, but she had never heard her mother's voice so cold, so bitter, so detached. "After we… left," there were three beats of silence while Rachel grappled for the right words, "he sent a helicopter after us. I had finished the amplifier, and he sent a Chopper after us and he killed your brother."
All she could hear were the cries of the birds, the wind shaking the branches of the green canopy, the shrill ringing of her own ears. She could hear her own heart beat, could taste the salt and copper of her own tears mixing with blood as they streaked down her cheeks. Sebastian wouldn't, he wouldn't have killed Danny. Danny was family. Bass was family. He wouldn't kill Danny.
Her gaze once more found her uncle's, searching for anything that might suggest this was just some cruel joke, but the man couldn't even look at her anymore, his knuckles white from their grip on his sword hilt. "What did you do," she found herself whispering again. Miles just shook his head and stood, helping her up as well.
"We have to keep moving, Charlie. Bass will have sent people after us by now, even more when Neville reports back to him. We gotta go." She didn't want to move though, her legs like jelly beneath her, nausea twisting in her gut. Two arms moved around her, hauling her to her feet despite the pain, her crossbow shoved into her hands. "It's a long way to Colorado, we have to move, kid."
She couldn't mount an argument, letting herself be steered along by Jason, ignoring the cold looks from her mother and the glances from Miles. She couldn't catch a full breath, much less wrap her mind around the information she had received, and for the briefest of moments, she wanted desperately to pull away from them and run, back to Bass. Back to Philly to demand the truth straight from the man himself. But she didn't. She couldn't. So, she walked and she walked and she walked some more, until the sun tave way to the moon and she let herself succumb once more to the darkness of unconsciousness.
Thank you for reading! i am sorry for the delay in getting this chapter posted! this week has been hectic with the arrival of my very own Bass! check him out over on instagram ! he's the cutest little pup you ever did say ;) and he lives up to his name pretty well!