There was a baby in one of those stasis tanks.

There must be no hesitation. She knew what they would want her to do.

The computers were helpless to stop her from accessing graphs, data, readouts.

Relief. It was alive.

What on earth they intended to do with a child was beyond her, but it must be something evil. She couldn't leave it here.

The tube lowered silently, to the shadow's relief, and the sedated baby did not wake. She freed its breath mask gently and pulled off her black scarf to swaddle it with, red hair spilling everywhere. Liquid ran between her fingers, streaked her clothing. There was no time to bother about it.

A noiseless movement and she turned, green eyes wide, clutched the baby tightly, faced the doorway that had just now been empty.

Heavy black bangs, red headband, expressionless face.

Heartsickness. Failure. Loss. Despair...

"There's nothing here." The raven-haired warrior spoke flatly to someone behind her. "Move on down to Data."

The wraith ducked behind a monitor bank, holding her breath until the group of Foot had passed.

Relief.

The shadow was gone almost as soon as they were, trembling with adrenaline aftershock and gratitude that might never be expressed as she escaped the building and vanished into the night. The disc weighed heavy in her pocket, the little one heavy in her arms... but along with each throb of pain, she now felt hope.

-THE END-

For Mom,
who
still thinks I should write.


Honorable Reviewers -- No flames, please. Honest opinions are just fine though! I was really encouraged (not to mention surprised) by the kind feedback on my last post, so I'd like to specially thank those reviewers; they're part of the reason this story now exists. Thanks also to the readers! Time is valuable, and I'm honored that you chose to spend yours here. Vielen danke!