Neo was staring in awe at the large city below built in the shape of a tree, likely through the meticulous planning of a mad genius. On the lower levels of the tree were stalls with small metal plated houses scattered around and between them albeit there was plenty of space to move around in. Further up the cave wall was another level covered over in brass that shone in the artificial light hung around the massive cave, likely a place for the Zion Council to meet. Ezra was standing to his left with the bag and stared at him until he looked over to her.
“You’re going to need this,” she said, holding the canteen out to Neo.
He took it from her outstretched hand and looked back down at the city, noticing a niche carved into the rock above the various ‘branches’ of the city, likely to be places of residence. Neo could not however, scratch out the idea that they were control rooms full of men and women who were running the docking bays or giving commands to ships… but where were they?
“If you have another question I’m sure I can give you the answers you need Neo,” Ezra said with a cool tone, “but don’t expect too many big words in my sentences like everybody else you’ve met. I’m a teenager not an encyclopaedia.”
Neo thought to smirk, but only gave her a confused glare and then raised an eyebrow.
“Is there a difference?” he asked jokingly.
Ezra chuckled and walked past him, heading down a cut-out walkway in the rock of the cave as she made her way over to the makeshift elevator. Neo was walking behind her, glancing at the new city if Zion every few seconds to be sure that it was real and not a dream.
“You ever been on anything like this before?” she asked loudly, breaking Neo from his concentrated stare.
He glanced at the level on the wall and the elevator; a thick slab of metal with heavy-duty fastenings and a definitely-home-made pulley system – he wouldn’t get to Zion without dying for sure.
“I promise you that it’s completely safe.” Ezra announced as if hearing his thoughts, “I did build that eye and the hydraulics for that door.”
Ezra threw a thumb over her shoulder and pointed it at the door they had walked through to get into the giant chamber.
“I also helped rebuild Zion,” she boasted with hints of a smile turning up the corners of her lips.
“But you’re just a kid… you can’t build complicated machines,” Neo said in a stern tone.
Ezra was quick to defend herself.
“And you were just a man who couldn’t possibly defeat the Machines,” she pointed out, “that makes us two idiots who made the right mistakes.”
Neo was tempted to slap the cheeky grin off of the young woman’s face but he knew it wouldn’t do him any good. She was just trying to have fun.
I know this is an unusually short chapter, but I have an excess of four other fics to write and remember plot lines for, so apologies if my writing lacks its usual quality or imagination - school is a pain BTW