We all wonder once we finish a book what would have happened if a character had made a difference choice. I had the chance to dream about it, this is what I came up with. This is a canon split with Shadow of the Hegemon by Orson Scott Card. This version has been REVAMPED to fix grammar and spelling errors.
Petra falls upon the floor, pain stinging through her cheek. Achilles stands before her his hand still raised from the blow. Petra's eyes flash and she gropes at her leg for the knife she had hidden there during lunch.
Jumping to her feet, Petra leaps forward with all the rage of her captivity. The knife buries itself in deep into his heart. The gun falls from his grasp as he gasps for breath. She pulls out the knife and brings the blade ripping across his throat. His lifeblood drips onto the carpet. He reaches for her, stumbling as he tries to speak. His mouth moves but no sound escapes his lips. Their eyes meet for a moment and he stares at her before crumpling onto the floor his eyes still fixed on Petra, focused even in death. The knife drops from her hands and she looks down at the lifeless body before her. Blood streams sluggishly between her fingers and her clothes are a bright crimson.
Coolly she detaches herself from the situation and begins to think. When Achilles cronies come to investigate why Achilles does not come out they would find him dead and her covered in blood. Without him, there will be no reason to keep her alive. On this vein she begins to search the room. Achilles would have had a bolt-hole, the streets of Amsterdam would have allowed for no other mentality. Her initial search reveals nothing so she pauses and stares at the body on the floor. "Where did you hide it?" she mutters softly as her eyes move across the room. For a second her eyes un-focus on the piece of carpet he had been standing on just before she had jumped him. "Of course…" Falling to her knees she searches the floor till her fingers find an almost invisible loop of carpet.
It was made for someone with Achilles' sized fingers, but she manages to haul away the piece of carpet. It came easily, displaying cleanly cut sides. Underneath stood a hatchway to a small door. A loud knock causes Petra to freeze as the sound reverberates through the room. Instinct takes over as the door opens. She pulls up the door and slips down as shouts chime from whomever had opened the door. A single shot is fired, but she is no longer in the room. Her feet hit the ground with numbing force and she is back up and running.
The passageway is narrow and dark. She runs with one hand stretched out before her and the second feeling the side of the passageway for more openings. A slight wind begins to reach her, sending a chill down her spine. After a bit of time and stumbling over bits of rock she reaches a turning point. The wind is stronger to her left and so she turns that way. The wind whips around her, chilling her hands and face. Goosebumps climb across her body and her nose grows red in the chill.
Time is nonexistent in the darkness. Somewhere behind her she hears the faint shouts of Achilles' guards, but she does not panic. For now, they are growing no closer and the chill wind is directly on her face. It wraps lovingly around her stealing her warmth and starting to freeze her sweat into little beads of ice upon her skin.
The steel of the passage comes to and end, but the wind continues to blow in her face. Petra runs her hands across the freezing wall before her but nothing stands out. She pauses and warms her hands up under her armpits before running them again over the wall in the darkness. This time she finds a latch and with all her strength pushes the doorway open.
Snow flies into her face and a large pile of snow buries her for a moment. Body warmth melts the snow as she fights her way out of it. Petra stares at the landscape around her. Behind her stands the compound, and before her a winter wasteland. She takes one step and her hands lose their grip on the door and the wind forces it closed. Blindly she attempts to open it again, but it had no handle on the outside.
In the distance she can hear an alarm and the sound of it forces her face her options. Stay here, be found and most likely be killed, or chance the storm in which she would possibly die. In light of the possibilities she turns to face the storm. She trudges away into the blinding slow her hands and feet growing more numb by the second. The snow melts from the warmth of her body then freezes again forming a thin layer of ice along her clothing. She wipes snow from her eyes and pushes forward focusing on placing one foot in front of the other. Bushes hit her, but she only vaguely notes their presence. Needle sharp edges rake across her face, arms and hands scraping away the ice for a moment and leaving long angry scratches that barely bled in the cold.
Once she falls as she stumbles into a large tree. Pain shoots up her arms as she tries to catch herself. The numbness of her arms and legs causes her to miscalculate and she takes the fall full in the face. The tree creates a momentary break in the fury of the wind, giving her a moment to catch her breath before she stands up again and forces herself forward to look for shelter. She can no longer feel her toes. Her fingers are a long distant memory. A small part of her mind informs her that she needs to get out of the cold or she will no longer be able to move.
Shots ring behind her and she falls into the snow to hide. They had found her. Struggling she gets to her feet and stumbles as best she can slightly to her left thankful that the storm would erase her footprints. The time was indeterminable. Twice bullets ripped past her face, kissing it lightly before running on to another target. It seemed like hours before the shooting stopped, but they do stop. She finds another fallen tree and pauses for a moment. She hears nothing.
Petra starts back on her trek, falling more then once. The storm begins to fade a bit, her visibility becoming more then a few feet. Her eyes fix on the newest sight, smoke. She races as fast as she is able to on feet that might as well be blocks of ice. She does not find the building so much as run right into it. Her face is scratched by the harsh wood. Numb hands move in desperation across the wall to find a window, a door anything at all. More by luck then anything else her frozen hands send pain shooting up her arms as they hit something metal. She forces them to grip it and pulls with every ounce of her remaining strength. It opens, and she falls into a room blessedly warm. Her mind registers the warmth before she faints.