Thank you guys, it always feels good to know that someone is reading your stuff and liking it!
"Ebony, please, you've got to talk to him." Trudy said looking at her. There was a large group of them sitting around the table at the kitchen.
"I'm done talking." Ebony said standing up. "We've been here for a week, do you think things are okay in the city, in my city right now?" she shouted. This was an ongoing discussion, one that started the moment Ebony saw a mallrat, until she went to bed at night. But none of them seemed to listen to her, or understand when she told them Bray wasn't ready.
"You're not even trying to help him remember!" Amber shouted standing up as well, she was frustrated, annoyed and hurt.
"Calm down." Alice shouted at both girls, waiting for them both to sit back down. She couldn't just allow the two of them to go at each other, no matter how much she wanted to watch them finally have it out.
"I'm not going to try and make him remember something he doesn't want to." Ebony said in a calm but shaky voice. It was easy to tell that she was just as tired of hearing about it as Bray was at trying to remember. "I am going to get my city back, that's what I'm going to talk about."
"And you don't think he would be more help if he remembered?" Pride asked, knowing it was best to say something before Amber had another chance.
"When are you going to understand that he doesn't want to remember?" Ebony asked looking around at all of them, trying to plead with them, to make them understand. "He doesn't want his old life right now." She looked right at Amber, "So stop pushing it on him."
"You don't want him to remember." Amber said looking back at Ebony, disgusted. "You're trying to keep him from me." It was simple to her. This was just another way that Ebony tried to keep them apart, another thing to come between them, it was what Ebony did best after all.
"Get over yourself Amber." Ebony pushed away from the table. "I am leaving."
"Ebony, please." Jay said standing up, trying to plead with her.
"No, you please. This is your tribe, this is still your doing, yours and Ved's." Ebony said pointing a finger at him. "I'm not like this lot here, I won't sit back and let this crazy group rule over my city any longer. I'm going back, and Bray is going with me." With that she left the room full of mallrats.
"You guys need to understand, the city, our city, we know what is going on there, you don't, and we can't just sit here, not doing anything." Lex said getting up. "If they go back, I have to go with them."
"Lex." Tai-san said, looking up at her husband.
"We have to take down the Techno's without taking down the city." Lex said looking at them, "And we know how they work." He left the room as well, no one saying anything.
"They have a point." Jay nodded.
"No, they don't!" Amber shouted. "She doesn't want him to remember, and she's trying to make sure he doesn't."
"Honestly Amber." Tai-san said looking at her, for the first time understanding how Ebony felt about Amber.
Rolling over with a sigh Mackenzie hit Ved's sleeping body.
"Sleep." He muttered, reaching out for her, eyes closed.
"I can't." she whispered back. When she heard the soft snoring coming from Ved seconds later, she knew he was still fast asleep, not fully aware of the fact that she was, yet again wide awake, and it was well into the night. She pushed the covers away from her, and sat up, pulling her legs out, and walking the few steps to the other bed, the bed with Lane and Honesty, fast asleep. She made her way in between the two, and watched them as they slept. They were safe at the farm, they were learning things she couldn't have taught them, and they were getting more social interaction than before. She knew that it should have been enough for her, she should have been satisfied with knowing they were getting an amazing childhood, a normal childhood. She use to think that was all she needed, was for them to be safe and happy. But ever since Ebony, Lex and Bray had returned, she knew it wasn't enough anymore. She stroked each child's hair a few times before getting out of the bed. She stood between the two, wondering what would happen to the life she was building for them.
"Mommy?" the little boy asked, lifting his head.
"Go back to sleep sweetie, " Mackenzie said bending down and smiling at him,
"I love you mommy." The little boy whispered as his eyes shut.
"I love you too." Mackenzie sighed. She went over and climbed back into bed with Ved, unsure if sleep would ever come.
Amber walked back and forth in the kitchen, bouncing the toddler in her arms. It was late, or early, she wasn't really sure. The taken mallrats had been back for almost two weeks, and Bray still didn't remember her, their son. It was stressful and painful to watch and Bray and Ebony walked hand in hand around the farm, talking about things that hadn't happened. She knew that her stress was affecting B.J., and she knew that was why she was up again, another restless night. She turned to the kitchen door when someone came in, but sighed, disappointed when it was Ebony.
"Not who you wanted to see." Ebony rolled her eyes, placing a water cup on the table.
"Sorry, I was just hoping it was Trudy or Salene." Amber whispered back, trying her best to sound pleasant enough.
"Please don't pretend you like me. Bray isn't here, you don't have to act like we're friends." Ebony told her.
"I'm not." Amber started. "It's not that." She sighed, "I'm sorry, it's just hard, I would give anything to have him remember."
Ebony looked at her, she wasn't sure if she should feel guilty, or annoyed.
"If there was some way you could make him remember Ebony, I would give my word that we would all go back to the city, that we would take down the Technos. I would do anything to have him back." Amber looked at the little boys face, his eyes were still wide, watching her.
"I've already told you, I can't make him remember something he doesn't want to." Ebony looked at her, and for a second she felt her heart pull for Amber. She use to look so happy, so in control and sure of herself and everything around her. But now she just looked lost.
Ebony flipped through the notes Ved had scattered over the table. There was drawling of the brains, sketches of the hook ups, the wires, the machines. Everything that was laid out before her was about Bray, about his memories. She picked up a list of names, names they had been using, people he should have had an emotional tie to. Amber, the love of his life, Danni, mother to his first born son, Baby Bray, Johnnie, Trudy, Brady, Eagle, Zoot, everything was written down, any tie there could have been, every name they could have thought of. But the longer she looked at the list, the more apparent it became to her that there was one name that was missing. One name that no one had used yet, something that could be the key. She put the paper back down and sat in the chair, the one she had watched Bray sit in so many times. She knew that it was only a matter of time before the others thought of it, before Amber realized the name no one had said. She looked up when someone else walked into the room.
"Ebony, sorry I was looking for Ved." Mackenzie smiled at her. "Everything alright?" she noticed the troubled look Ebony had.
"I think I know how to give Bray back his memories." Ebony whispered looking down at the papers. "But what if, there is a part of me, that doesn't want him to remember?"
"Okay." Mackenzie said sitting down on the other side of the table, her hands rested on the table top as she watched Ebony, trying to think of what to say. "What are our options here? You don't tell him, and leave so that he doesn't find out. But then you have to risk him finding out someday anyways. Or telling him, seeing if it works, and giving back two little boys their father."
"Are you trying to guilt me into this?" Ebony asked.
"No, but don't ask my opinion if you don't want to hear it." Mackenzie sighed. "The right thing to do is what will give you no regrets."
Bray sat at the same table, the table littered with papers regarding his memories, the timeline laid open. He and Ebony were going over it again, but this time he could tell that she had more to add to it, something she was having a hard time saying.
"Will you just say it already?" Bray laughed putting the paper down.
"What?" Ebony asked looking up at him, wondering if she had started to speak her thoughts out loud.
"You hate going over this as much as I do." Bray smiled. "I'm only trying to humor you with this, you know that." He reached out for her hands, brushing her knuckles on his lips.
Ebony took a deep breath and looked down at the table. "There is something, something no one has really talked about yet."
"What?" Bray wondered what the mystery could be. He had long given up on remembering, and had no problem not remembering. He enjoyed his life with Ebony as his wife. He liked the way she would steal looks when she didn't think he was watching her, and how she could go from cold to hot in a matter of seconds. She was already for a fight, and often times looking for one, just for something to do. She made him happy.
"What do you think will change when you remember the truth, when you have the real memories back?" Ebony asked softly, watching him.
"I don't know. You said it's hard to tell the difference sometimes, between your real memories and the ones Ram made you believe." Bray sighed. "I'm guessing it will be the same for me."
Ebony sighed and watched him for a moment. The memories she had, all mixed together whirled in her head, nights with Jay, her wedding to Bray. Even though she knew they were fake, she still lived with the idea that she was married and in love with him for over a year. "I hope you don't hate me when this is over." She whispered, catching Bray off guard. Before he had the chance to say anything else she told him. "Your brother's name wasn't Zoot, he was a year younger than you, and you use to protect him from everything, and you still did, even when he was Zoot, even when Lex pushed him, you were just protecting him. His name was Martin."
Bray watched as Ebony's lips moved, as the name floated into the air and hung there for a second before disappearing. Bray saw a flash of ice blue eyes, short curly hair, dirty dread locks, a gentle small boy, the boy he cried with when their parents died, the scary dirty boy that had lost everything, even himself. Bray saw Trudy, holding a baby, a boat burning, Amber holding his hand, his wedding, Danni's smile. The flashes started to come faster and faster, everything was flashing before him, arguments, kisses, search parties, the market, Top Hat, B.J., Johnnie, and Ebony. He reached up and pressed his fists against his eyes hard, trying to make it stop.
Ebony could feel the tears sting her eyes as she watched him. She could see the confused, angry emotions that were taking him over. She could see part of the real Bray back, the Bray that wasn't her husband. She didn't want to cry, not in front of him, not if he remembered. She wanted him to see her as the same person, the person she was before they made them believe the lies. She stood up quietly, and left him in the room, alone. As she walked out of the barn and into the fresh air, she saw Amber. Amber always seemed to be close by, no matter what her and Bray were doing, Amber always seemed to be waiting for the moment, for her moment.
"Ebony." Amber smiled and nodded at her. "Is everything alright?" she asked noting the water building up in her eyes.
Ebony stopped and looked at Amber, her head titled to one side. "It's a done deal, Bray remembers." Was all she could say.