Gavin tried to run after her but the corridor was already on fire. He was stuck in that room and his attempts to walk through the fire didn’t work. He tried to contact Eli or anybody else through the radio but there was no answer. His mind was about to blow. Who was she? What were she doing when they found her on the road? What was her problem with Leto? He never trusted Leto completely because he had a hunch that there was something shady about the director but he was the director of STF and Gavin had to listen to him no matter what. He was trying and failing to get out of the burning room with all the questions rooming around his head.
The Red Queen knew exactly where Leto was but wanted to play around a little. She was dreaming about this very moment ever since she was locked up in that room which was more like a cage for her. They didn’t let her die, but she couldn’t live, either. Her rage, anger, hunger for revenge grew day by day and the time finally had came.
“Leto, Leto, you little weirdooo! Come out and playyy!” she shouted playfully “You remember me, right? Even if you don’t, it doesn’t matter, to be honest. I’ll be the last face you’ll see, the last thing you’ll remember, one way or another.”. The building was shaking harder with every step she took.
There were STF agents coming her way but they had no chance against her. She could feel the blood flowing through their veins, the air in their lungs. She wanted to burn them all, or drown them, bury them into the solid ground but deep down she knew that they weren’t responsible for what happened to her. She knew that she should spare their lives, just like Gavin and Eli. Also, she had never wanted to kill Leto, too. She just wanted to make him suffer just like she did. Death would be an easy way out for him. So she fought against her urge to kill. She just threw them to the wall and kept walking.
Leto was yelling at everyone, giving useless orders. There were flames near him so he knew she was close, too. Did he regret what he done to her? No way. He was still thinking whatever he did was right thing to do but seeing her rage made him scared to his bones because he knew her, he knew what she was capable of. When he was loading his gun, he heard her saying “Stop being a coward and throwing your men at me. You were so confident when I last saw you, so cruel, cold blooded when I was on my knees, begging you to keep your word.”
Everything stopped when she finished her sentence. The fire died away, the shaking was gone.
“Zero?” asked Leto quietly, looked around in confisuon. But hearing that word made her even more angry. She suddenly appeared and ran towards Leto, “Stop calling me by my fucking slave name!” She hated that name, Zero. It was her agent number for STF, before she was tricked and locked up.
She had never been a mentally stable person. One single little push and she’d go insane and It was one of those moments. She totally lost control and her mind went blank. There were flames everywhere when Gavin and a few more agents showed up. They were barely breathing because of all the smoke and fire.
There were nothing else, but suddenly everything stopped again. The fire, the shaking.
Leto and the Red Queen were gone, too. But this time Gavin could sense where they were. Maybe she wanted to be found, he didn’t know. He told his friends to stay where they were. He brought her here so he was responsible for the mess. He had to fix this on his own, he thought.
They were outside of the STF building. She threw Leto to the ground and he screamed like hell “Stop! It was your fault and you know that, Zero.” She lifted and threw him again, harder this time and you could hear Leto’s bones breaking “You’re still using that name! You want me to kill you for real?!”. Leto laughed in pain “You’re a freaking monster. I wouldn’t be suprised if you killed me!”. His sassy comeback was irritating to her. She started to threw flames at him this time “You wouldn’t be suprised because you’d be dead, dumbass! If I am a monster now, that’s on you!” Leto cried in pain. His flesh was burning, bones breaking and he was breathing toxic smoke. At that time, he might be regretting some of his actions but he didn’t have time to think about that because The Red Queen kicked his head so hard, he felt like his brain was blowing just before he lost consciousness.
When Gavin arrived, she was sitting on the ground, sobbing, her face covered with her hands. Gavin felt like Youran was crying in front of him and his heart shattered. She was reminding him of Youran, maybe that was why he was approaching her in a very sensitive way. But still, he knew they were nothing alike inside. Youran would never hurt someone like she did. Youran was so innocent, so kind… He also knew he had to put his thought of one sided love aside for that time.
Leto was lying there. Gavin couldn’t see if he was dead or alive but he had to do something. He started to walk towards them slowly and said “Are you okay?” to the girl, with a voice so soft that could melt your heart. She put her hands down but didn’t look at Gavin “What do you think? Do I look okay?”.
Gavin looked at still slightly breathing Leto before sitting beside her. He was alive but seriously injured. Better than being dead, thought Gavin. “Well, I think you had better days.” He said. She laughed but it was the most heartbreaking laughter Gavin heard. “No…” she said “I had no better days than today.”
They looked at each other’s eyes. Gavin’s sincere look was calming her down. She smiled without noticing but you could still see the hatred, the rage and the sadness in her eyes. “Ruby.” she said “My name is Ruby.”
Gavin pointed at Leto “Well, Ruby will you tell me what’s happening?”
“It’s a long story.”
Gavin tilted his head “Well, I have time to listen.”
Ruby smiled and got up “No, you don’t. You’re mortal, your life span is around 70 years and if we consider your job you’ll probably die in a few years.”. Gavin was confused “Aren’t you a mortal like…me?”. His confusion was entertaining for Ruby “Am I? I don’t know, probably not. I was there when World War II was happening. Do the math.” She touched Leto’s body by her foot “Get up. We have things to do, you sneaky little bitch.” Leto opened his eyes slowly but couldn’t move and that put a smile on Ruby’s face “Wait, you can’t get up. Sorry, my bad. I suddenly forgot how I broke every bone of yours.”
Ruby glanced at Gavin. He was watching her and probably in shock. She rolled her eyes and cupped his face “I’ll tell you everything, Gabbie. It’s just not the time. You care about STF, right? Evolvers?”. Gavin mumbled a little “Yes.” “Good.” She said “I do, too. That’s one of the reasons why I am here. But first things first, we have to get rid of Leto. Okay? Also, I’m sorry about the building but I’ll fix it. No worries. Trust me. Please?”. She literally puppy eyed Gavin but he didn’t fall for that and removed her hands from his face “I won’t trust you till you tell me what…THE FUCK…IS GOING ON!”. That was too much. Maybe she’s not even an evolver, he thought. He pushed Ruby a little and talked to his radio “It’s agent B7, I need first aid over here, in the backyard. Now!”
“Oh, you’re not helping him!” Ruby yelled and put her left hand up. The ground was shaking again, harder this time. She started a huge storm using her other hand.
Gavin was running out of patience but he knew if he attacked back, she’d be more upset. He took small steps towards her slowly “Look! I know, you’ve been through things and I get it, you have reasons but this is not the solution of your problems!” Ruby didn’t answer him, she just started to bury Leto’s weak and injured body to the ground by using her evol. Leto was screaming in pain and agents were coming their way but they couldn’t get close due to all that chaos.
“Let me help you!” Gavin shouted “I swear I’ll make things right for you, just let it go!” These words didn’t stop Ruby but they were touching her, it was obvious because things were slowing down. Gavin held her hand and whispered her ear “Let it go. We’ll go inside now, okay? Whatever Leto has done to you, or to STF, he’ll pay for that but not this way. C’mon.” Then, he hugged her. His hug was so tight yet so soft, so sincere… It was the compassion she had been yearning for years. It was just a small hug, empty promises and probably he was lying just to get through this but Ruby didn’t care. She had not felt anything except anger and sadness for a long time that she thought she was heartless but that time she was full of feelings. She couldn’t hug Gavin back because she literally didn’t know what to do. She just whispered a little, too hard to hear “I’m sorry.” Other STF agents rushed to help Leto when Ruby and Gavin were walking in.
After awhile, they were in a big hall because Ruby was ready to tell them everything but first she apologised for making a huge mess. Then, she explained everything about Leto but only the things concerning STF. She didn’t tell them her personal issues with him. Ruby told them how Leto killed every criminal they caught, how he sold classified informations of STF to other organizations and the other corrupted things he did and everyone listened to her all ears.
“Well, that’s all you need to know. Look, I care about evolvers. I’ve literally protected them, I mean you, for my whole life and I’ll keep doing that. I have to. Also, a huge chaos is at the door. Black Swan is up to no good, you know that. And we’ll fight against them. We can’t let them do whatever they’re planning to do. We’ll start by fixing the flaws of STF. But not today. Go home and have some rest for now. Tomorrow, we will establish a council to direct this organization. Our actions won’t be determined by one person anymoe.” She said. Ruby thought she was pretty convincing till someone raised his voice from the crowd “How can we believe you? You almost destroyed the building, attacked us, attempted to murder the director?” She heard people agreeing with him.
Ruby cleared her throat before talking again “I know I didn’t make a good impression. I was just… I was just out of control but I swear it won’t happen again. Also, I can prove everything I’ve said. Just go to the place where Leto says the prisoners are locked. I was there and it was only me. Go see it by yourself if you still don’t believe me. Everyone you arrested and you thought you brought to justice, is dead or lost. That’s Leto’s vision of justice and it’s corrupted.”
“What about the information leaks?” a woman asked.
Ruby rolled her eyes “Have you ever wondered why some of the suspects you’re investigating get away so easily? Go look at Leto’s personal computer, phone. I’m sure you’ll find some contacts with Black Swan and the other organizations. If you can’t find anything there, check his bank accounts, investments, I swear on my life, he is decieving you.”
Everybody started to bomb her with questions. She had answers for them all because she was telling the truth but she was under too much pressure and was struggling to keep her calm. It was Gavin who ran for her help, again. For some reasons, Gavin believed in her and wanted his friends to believe her just like he did. He called to the crowd a couple of times and they finally stopped talking. Gavin was their captain but even if he wasn’t their superior, they’d still respect him because he was an honest and reliable man. “We’ll listen to her.” he said with a serious face “Because I know she’s not lying. I know she’s not dangerous like she seems. Also, she’s our only chance against Black Swan, for now. We’re doing as she says, go home, rest. Tomorrow, we’ll establish the council and keep on fighting like we always do.” Ruby thanked him in a low voice, she was not sure if he heard her. Gavin did hear what she said but didn’t look at her. He just left the hall with other agents. He was talking to Eli when was getting out and Ruby watched him till he disappeared.
In a few hours all the agents left the building. Just a couple of guards left.
Ruby was too tired and hungry but she wanted to clean the mess she made before having some rest. She heard someone calling for her while she was collecting some debris on the floor. It was Gavin. He was about to go home but couldn’t leave Ruby behind. He knew she nedded help and he himself needed some company, too. “Gonna spend the night in here?” he asked.
Ruby got up, fixed her still bloody clothes and smiled “That’s the plan. The cell was pretty comfortable.” Gavin scrtached his neck, he was not sure about the answer he’ll get but he shot his shoot “No it’s not. You can come to my place, if you want. You know, you can freshen up a little and eat something, have some rest…”
“I don’t know…” she said “I think I troubled you enough for today. I’ll be okay here, really. See you tomorrow.” She turned her back and took a few steps but Gavin called for her again “Oh, c’mon. You can prepare me some dinner to apologise. My motorcycle’s not here but I’ll take one of the cars in the garage.” He pointed at the exit and Ruby shook her hands, couldn’t hide her big grin “Well, if you insist…”
It was a silent car ride but the silence was bothering Gavin. He looked at Ruby, she was watching the view with a huge admiration. He had too many questions for her but he was aware it was not the time. Still, he had to break the silence. “What’s your favourite song? I’ll play it.” Ruby turned back to Gavin and put her fingers to her chin, thought for a while and then said “Actually, I don’t have one. I haven’t listened any music for a long time.” shyly. Gavin regretted his question immadietly. He was trying to change the mood but he just made her even more sad. Then, he put a cd in the player, hoping not to screw up this time “Then, this’ll be your favourite song from now on.” Feeling Good by Micheal Buble started to play.
“Birds flying high, you know how I feel” she closed her eyes and took a deep breath.
“Sun in the sky, you know how I feel”
“Breeze driftin' on by, you know how I feel” the soft wind was caressing her cheeks, her hair.
“It's a new dawn, It's a new day, It's a new life for me and I'm feeling good…”
Gavin was right, she really liked the song. It was indeed a new dawn for her, and back then she had no idea what was about to come.