Lost Freedom

Lost Freedom

A Chapter by Ricky
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Traveling through the filthy sewers Richard and his alien companion try and keep their sanity intact

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Richard and his new alien companion wander in complete darkness with nothing but the foul stench of the sewer to comfort them. Richard plugged his nose with his free hand, it helped rid him of the stench but now he began to taste the foulness that surrounded him. Dragging him along was this alien who seemed to make a gagging noise every so often having to stop as she coughed violently. He knew that she had no idea where she was taking him and had little hope that her plan to get this bomb out of his head would work. As far as he knew she could be leading them in circles and they were just stalling their capture. 


               She stopped again with a fit of coughs, with every cough she tugged his cuffed wrist that sent a jolt of pain through his body. He didn’t how bad the damage to his body was, but he knew that every bit of movement was agonizing. If they weren’t being hunted at the moment he’d probably collapse and let the alien drag her. The foul taste of the air made him rethink that notion. The alien took in another raspy breath trying to get control over her breathing.


“Hey are you ok?” He asked this somewhat out of concern that maybe he’d have to be the one dragging her.


“I’m fine.”


“You sure? You don’t sound fine.”


“I’ll let you know when you should be concerned now come on we need to keep moving.”  She had yanked him forward not only causing him to grunt by almost lose his footing. A few moments past before she tried to suppress another fit of coughs.


“You’re not gonna die on me, now are you? I’d hate to think what would happen if those agents or whatever found me with your dead corpse.” She ignored his statement.


“Do you even know where you’re going?” 


“For the love of Alyu, stop talking!”


“Who?”


“Be quiet, I’m trying to get us out of here.”


“And I’m asking if you know where you’re going?”


“Of course, I know where I’m going! Now if you down mind stop talking!”


“Are you sure?”


“Yes!”


“So, you’re telling me an alien on a foreign planet, in an unknown city, crawling through a very old and probably unused drainage line knows exactly where it is going?”


“Yes! Now be quiet!”


“Alright as long as you know.” His antagonisms were more of a way to cope than to annoy her. Because no matter where they ended up he’d still be in the same situation that she was in.

           

    They move on in the blackness endlessly, both being silent aside from the occasional coughing fit. It had felt like they had been moving for hours and the pain and stench was getting two them both.  She once again went into another vicious fit of coughing this time though it brought her down to all fours dragging Richard beside her. She was gagging and gasping unable to get to stop this time however.


“Ok, you are not alright, tell me what’s wrong now.” He began patting her back.


“I’m, *coughing* I’m fine. L-lets get going.” She tried to rise but was hunched back over when she began coughing again.  Richard tried to her to stand up, thinking that her airways worked like his and that they’d be more open when she was upright. It didn’t help though as she continued wheezing, furthermore she tried to shove him away. She was becoming weak and was unable to, he could feel her arm shaking as she tried to push him aside.


“You remember what I said earlier about being found with your corpse, well I get the feeling I’m gonna be right if you don’t tell me what’s wrong with you.” His voice was more serious now. She let out a few more coughs before she tried to clear her throat.


“It’s my skin. Alyuan’s don’t have nostrils so we smell through our skin.” She barely managed to get that out before another fit overwhelmed her.


               Richard sighed as now it made a lot more sense to why she was having so much trouble being down here. The constant smell of mold and God knows what else was literally choking her at this point. He was surprised she hadn’t thrown up already, then he thought that she didn’t because her species was incapable of doing so. Hearing her enter another fit he took off his sweatshirt handing it to her.


“Here wear this, it won’t stop you from smelling this place entirely but it should help.” Richard was aimlessly grasping for her other hand over the clothing.


“I-I don’t…”


“Just shut up and take before you literally kill yourself!” he said finally grabbing her other hand forcing her to hold it. He heard hear say something that was indistinguishable to him, but thought nothing of it and he felt her shift trying to put on the sweatshirt.  Then they hit a snag.


“This… this was pointless. It’s bad enough I’m chained to you, but there’s no way I want to have your skin rubbing against mine.”  She said throwing the sweatshirt back in his face with her free arm.


“I’m going to ignore your racist remarks and come up with a solution to this dilemma.” He spun the clothing around figuring which way was the front, then tearing the problem end’s sleeve all the way down to its base.


“There all better. Now unless you want to meet the Almighty, I suggest you put this on.”


“The who?”


“Just put the stupid shirt on!” Once again, the pair went through the shuffle of putting the sweatshirt on this time with more success however.


“How do you feel?” Richard asked.


“Whenever I move my left arm I catch a puff of the filth around us, so it could be better.” She was swinging there arms back and forth.


“Jesus Christ, ok here,” he grabs the fastener from the hoodie and loops it around her arm tying a knot at the end by the wrist. “There is that better, or is it too tight for you.”


“Aside from me smelling your musk, it’s adequate.” She retorted in her own condescending tone.


“Alright then leading your highness.”


               They continued to walk in the smelly pipes for quite awhile longer, the coughing fits persisted but with less frequency. At time she would stop to remark how disgusting humanity was or how much the smell of there surroundings were. If he weren’t cuffed to her and his life wasn’t on the line he’d have definitely made her shut up. Instead he put up with her constant disapproval of his species amusing himself with puns hat went over her head like, “This whole situation must seem ALIEN to you” or “Chin up at least your MOLDING character.”


               His joke spree wasn’t silenced when she let out a loud gasp backing up into him bring them both down.  “I felt something hairy brush against my leg.” She was quick to get back up yanking once more before proceeding to hide behind him.


“Ya know even if it was something dangerous, there isn’t much I can do with my hand cranked behind my back.”


“What was that thing?”


“It was probably just a rat. They’re vermin found all over the planet, but aren’t harmful or anything. Well, the normal sized ones can’t hurt you I don’t know about the cat sized one.”


“They’re not venomous, are they?”


“Well first of can you get out from behind me, you trying to dislocate my shoulder?” Richard pull her to the point where he felt comfortable, “Secondly no they’re not venomous. They do however, carry a lot of diseases, but you should be fine being a foreign life form and all.”


“Right, let’s just get out of this place as soon as possible.” They both stood there in the pitch-black darkness.


“Uh… weren’t you the one leading the way?”


“You can’t expect me to walk ahead in the darkness with that thing roaming about!”


“Hate to break it to ya, but this place we’re in is a haven for rats. Plenty of space leading all over the city, no predators down here, and even nasty water flowing beneath our feet…”


“Ugh! Your species is absolutely foul!”


“C’mon this way” Richard stomped forward with his alien companion trailing behind.


“Woah- hey slow down! I know I said I wanted to get out of her as fast as possible, but I don’t want to dragged doing it!”


“The rat was following the flow of the water, which mean it could also be a way out for us too.”


“That thing wasn’t very big for all you know you could be dragging me to some dead end.”


"True, but there’s a chance we could out too, and personally I’d prefer getting some fresh air at the minimum.” For the next twenty minutes or so the ran around stopping so that Richard could feel the water’s flow. All the while the sound a leaking water grew ever more prevalent filling him with hope. The alien meanwhile was not so confident as he was constantly throwing doubts at him and mocking his sense of direction. “Not as fun on the receiving end.” He thought to himself


               They kept going until they could see a dim lit worn out grated entrance rusted to hell with water dripping from it. He felt screaming in excitement for they had finally caught a break. Granted they were still wanted fugitive with manslaughter under their belt, but now they were that with less sewage in their lives. And for the moment that’s all that mattered as Richard chuckled in relief. The next thing he knew was being dragged by the alien who seemed as eager to get out as he was. She grabbed the heavy grated fence shaking forcefully, but the damn thing wouldn’t budge.


“Ugh, what is this flaky substance that is on this exit?” She said as we wiped the rusted off iron onto his sweatshirt.


“You mean rust?”


“What’s rust?”


“Are you kidding me? What do you guys maintain all of your metal made materials that they never rust?” She remained silent.


“Ok rust is basically when metal gets worn out due to multiple elemental factors and isn’t maintained.”


“You all just let your metal rot away?”


“We prioritize what does and doesn’t need to be upkept, admittedly we are a pretty wasteful species.”


“Clearly, but instead of talking help me find a way to open this gate.” Rolling his eyes after being blamed for a conversation she started Richard grabbed the grate and tried to force it open as well. No such came from it however leaving the two frustrated with freedom being so close, but caged off from them.


“This is all your fault!” The alien jabbed her finger into his chest.


“Really and how is this my fault?”


“If we had gone a different route back there we may have found a better way out by now! I knew I shouldn’t have let you lead me.”


“I’m sorry, but let me reflect upon the results of all the decisions you’ve made thus far. When you planted a decided to put a translator slash bomb into my head we were taken bro custody. When we were in custody you caused an accident where not only did we plummet to the ground in a car wreck, but also resulted in the death of one, maybe three other people. And by leading us into these tunnels you nearly asphyxiated yourself, as getting us nowhere at all. In regards to what I have done I’ve given you a chance at freedom by helping you rather than my own species. And when I took over I actually got us somewhere, plus on top of that I’ve explained to you a few details of Earth your welcome.”


“You’ve only done all that to benefit yourself nothing more!”


“I wouldn’t have had to do all that is I was strapped to a god damn alien!”


“Of all of your kind I could’ve chosen I had to pick you. Now I’m stuck with you because of that lunatic chained us together.”  Richard was going to opened his mouth for a retort, but instead something caught his eye.


“Maybe we can fix that.” The alien turned its eye in suspicion to what he said. “Look part of this has rusted off, we might be able to cut the chain off of the jagged metal.”


“And if we can’t?”


“Then we better find a way to conceal the fact that we’re cuffed. Give me your side of the chained.” He lifted the chain over the sharp broken off piece of grate. It was very obvious that the alien didn’t like that he had his hand so close to hers by the way she hesitantly gave him her wrist. “Too bad” he thought as he sluggishly sawed through the chain. A better part of twenty minutes went by before he was able to saw get through the link. Lifting it back over he forced the other link through setting the two free from one another.


“Well I’d prefer having this thing off my wrist, but being free from you will do.”


“You ain’t free just yet,” He pointing to the device attached to his head. “Plus, we still need to get out of here.”


“Well let’s find another way, this entrance isn’t going to budge.”


“No, we can’t afford to go back, the FBI is surely on our tail, hell the only reason why they haven’t been able to catch us thus far is because they aren’t able to track us down here.”


“All more the reason we need to go and find another exit!”


“Will you stop being so stubborn for a sec and think? The were right behind us right, so what makes you think that it would take them too long to find the way we got in here. They could be a few minutes behind us for all we know, and going back will increase the odds of them finding us. As a bonus come over her and look at the lock, it looks ancient, sure it a heavy-duty lock but if we put enough power into it it’s defiantly gonna bust.” He gestures her over pointing out the old brownish lock with the paint chipping off of it.


“I have had enough of this ‘rusty getting all over me, you seem capable and confident enough to do it yourself.” The alien leans up against the walls of the pipe getting the nasty grime all over his ruined sweatshirt.


“Look I’ve been very nice to you all things considering…”


“This is what your species calls nice?” the alien interrupted.


“…but CONSIDERING ALL THAT HAS HAPPENED, you helping me out would be a nice change of pace.”  The alien did not move. “Or you can go and run off letting my head explode giving away your general location so they can close in and nab you. Your choice." 


"You’re so willing to just let yourself die?”


“Nah, until recently my life has been pretty decent. Sure, a few hiccups here and there but overall, I got a lot to be thankful for. But considering that this thing is attached to my brain I’m guessing when you leaving I won’t even feel the bomb go off. And knowing you’ll be captured and stranded on my planet for the rest of your life will be some consolidation.” She rose from the wall angrily starring him down, her white pupils glowing in the dark contrast of the moonlight. He just smiled shrugging, despite being the victim of all this he had all the power in this situation.


               She said something that sounding like her own language which meant she was probably swearing at him. He thought of swearing back, but her coming over to actually help made him think better. She stood beside him taking a heavy look at the rusted bars before reluctantly grabbing them glancing over to make sure that he was doing the same. He grabbed them announcing to start on three, counting down they lashed out in the grate. Despite their effort the lock held discoursing them both, but Richard told her to try again on three. She sighed but agreed and once again shook the grate as hard gas they could.  A groan came from the lock, Richard stopped seeing the lock now had a noticeable crack in it.


“We almost got it!”   


“If that’s true then why’d you stop! Help me get this thing open and so I can get out and be done with this slog.” Richard grabbed the grate again shaking it savagely. All that did was get a concerned look from the alien, the lock though weakened wasn’t giving out yet.


“Hang on I got an idea keep doing what you’re doing.” He told her backing away from the grate.


“Where in Alyu’s name do you...” As she was questioning him he cashed into the grate shoulder first bouncing off. “Did it work?” She snickered as he rubbed and rolled his shoulder.


“Very funny, not exactly but look.” The lock was now missing a chuck of it and the crack had grown wider. “I’mma try it again, and ya know, feel free if you wanna pitch in.”


“No go ahead and break your shoulder ramming this thing, don’t let me stop you.”


“They call me Rammer for a reason.” He backed up even further this time and ran at the grate once more leading with the other shoulder. A loud pop cam as hit it the hatch swinging open and Richard falling right out of it splashing down into the water below.


“Alright, that wasn’t what I was expecting but I’ll take it. Hey, you still in there?”


“No, I just disappeared into thin air, of course I’m still here!”


“Huh, I’m sorry did you say a smartass remark? I couldn’t hear you I got water in my ear.”


“Very funny, is it safe to come out?”


“Yes no one is around, speaking of where are we?” He rotated himself in the cold dark water to see the locally dubbed 

‘Floating Bridge’ connecting Mercer Island to Seattle. The water near the bridge gleamed red on the Seattle portion of the bridge, while in the middle it flashed red and blue. Inspecting the bridge, he could see that there was a checkpoint with tiny figure going around cars looking through them and their trunks before letting them go on through.


“Well s**t.”


“What? I thought you said no one was here.” Richard felt a chill go up his spine startled.


“There isn’t but, look over there. Those flashing lights on that bridge is definitely for us, and I’m guessing they set more up on all the other roads leading out of the city. Which makes leaving Seattle that much harder.”


“That’s just fantastic, so we’re trapped here is what you’re saying?” the alien had somehow open the grate without him noticing and was sitting on top of it looking down at him.


“…Maybe not, I might know a guy who can help. We need to find a phone so I can talk to him. He might even be able to get these things off our wrist.” She sat there for a good bit giving him a displeased before carefully getting up.


“Well then get out of the water, I need you to find this person.”


“*sigh*Coming. God, I really hope this doesn’t put him in any hot water like I’m in.” Richard mutters swimming back to shore.


               As he climbs out of the water already knowing he’s a target of suspicion with his clothes being as drenched as they were. He would’ve asked for his hoodie back until realizing she probably need the hoodie to hide more than he does. Still his image must be pasted on very news outlet along with a ton of amber alerts giving off his description. And the broken handcuff and device attached to his head didn’t make things easier. He tapped on the device to remind him it was still there, it was obviously, but now hidden under a lump of his wet hair. He felt the smallest bit of relief despite knowing the odds were still against the two of them.


“Where are we going?” the alien waited for him arm’s crossed impatiently.


“The guy I mentioned was recently in the general area we just need to see if he’s still there.”


“And if he isn’t?”


“Then I’ll try and see if he can come to us or get us to him to help us out.”


“And what if we’re spotted in the time between it takes to for him to retrieve us?”


“Then we’re out of luck.”


“Is that all you can say! If we’re caught who knows what they will do to me.”


“Yeah cause it’s only your life on the line here, right?”


 For a moment he thought of reconsidering helping this alien, after all up to this point she’s been stingy, mean, racist, and condescending and so on. Sure, her species might be able to detach this from his head, but what’s stopping them from taking Earth. What if she tells them how hostile humanity has been and they see this as an act of war, mankind has a good chance if losing altogether. That’s an outcome he couldn’t live with, or probably others wouldn’t let him live with.


Regardless if she does or doesn’t give humanity a fair reputation he still loses in the end, because the U.S. government is not gonna be happy if he lets her get away. And in retaliation they might throw him into a maximum-security prison for the rest of his life. No one might know that he would be there either, all they’d have to do is make up some detailed cover up and boom no more question. He’d lose everything his life, his friends, his family; the thought of his family and how he might not ever see the again formed a lump in his throat.  He forced the tears from forming, but gave the alien a grim look wanting to take away her life as she did to his.


The same anger he felt before started to cloud his judgement, he felt a spike of adrenaline course through all of his limbs marching up to her. Reaching out to grab his shoulder he stops halfway with a million thoughts seeping into his mind.  Many of them were plans of how he should attack and react, but through the violence came reason and empathy. He wanted to know what his family would think of him if he killed another living being. Will the bomb still go off if she died, what would be the repercussions if he did this, and could he live with himself afterwards. His conscious got through to his body preventing him from murdering her, at least for now anyway.


“Hey why you just standing there? Take me to this person who can help us!” the alien had turned around hood over its head. Richard just ignored her and walked passed her waving her to follow him through Seattle’s dark streets.

 

 

 




© 2018 Ricky



Author's Note

Ricky
As always thank you for reading, and a special thanks to those whose reviews contributed to my writing. The reason this chapter came out as soon as it did was thanks to a review. If you want me to review any of your work just send me a message and i'll get to it ASAP. See you all in the next chapter

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Wow. Thats really all I have to say, its so freaking good.

Posted 4 Months Ago


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Added on January 24, 2018
Last Updated on January 24, 2018
Tags: Adventure, Sci-Fi, Action, Drama


Author

Ricky
Ricky

Seattle, WA



About
I am a young ambitious man who has always been fascinated in telling stories. And unlike the rest of my family who can draw very artistically i cannot so writing is as best as i can in displaying what.. more..

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A Chapter by Ricky