I should really be working on my other stories, but when I read Cinder this has been locked in my mind. I have the biggest love-hate relationship with somewhat cliffhangers. Anyway, I don't own the Lunar Chronicles and I am not Marissa Meyer. She has her own fanfiction and she's obsessed with Sailor moon.
Four months. Four months since Kai had to chose between a girl he had come to see as a friend (even, maybe, hoping that she would become more than a friend.) and his people. Once Cinder, if that was her real name and not a stolen one, had said that if she had to choose between her happiness and the lives of others, then it wasn't much of a choice.
For a while now he wondered if she really meant it. He felt so betrayed, when the fact she had been a cyborg and a Lunar was revealed. If she had told him, he liked to imagine himself accepting her. Like a kind, loyal friend. But did a friend like that just throw their friend to a corrupt queen, just because their feelings had been hurt?
He could admit that he wasn't surprised when she tried to escape. With the defiant way she had spoken the queen, it seemed impossible for her just to stay in the cell, dreaming about wires and such. What he was surprised of was that she actually succeeded. Sure, she was fully capable, and rumored to be the best mechanic in New Beijing. (Which, he understood now, was because she was a cyborg.) But he was pretty sure that no one had escaped in a good fifty years.
But then again, she was a lunar; capable of twisting the perception of others in a way that he found so unnatural. (Then again, what wasn't unnatural about today's society? Practically everything was mechanical.)
He remembered how unsteady she had seemed the first day he met her. Balancing herself on a table with her hands, the dirty foot that was now sitting, hidden, in one of his drawers lying on her work table. (It hurt to look at it, and he fully knew why. He was guilty and he missed her.) Iko, the personality filled android, bringing in a relatively new foot he realized probably also belonged to Cinder. Why hadn't she been wearing that one?
He understood why she hid it from him. Cyborgs were hated enough, but a cyborg Lunar? Forget about it. But he knew now that it wasn't all a lie. If it had been then his heart wouldn't be aching as it did now. If it had been, wouldn't she have jumped at the chance of being his guest at the ball? He knew another reason why she didn't tell him, he barely knew her. Why tell an almost stranger you belonged to two of the most hated groups in the world? Especially when he implied his hatred of one in front of her.
He wondered if how she looked was a Glamour; an odd Glamour it would have been, always covered in oil and who knew what else, her light brown hair shoved into a careless ponytail. (He found it charming, others not so much.) Why would she have worn gloves, instead of covering her hand with skin that wasn't there? But she was pretty, with big, stunning green eyes and sharp, beautiful features. (He tried to push the picture of her out of his mind. He failed.) He realized her beauty was probably natural, and that was more than Queen Levana could claim.
He remembered her fainting spells, clinging to the ground in pain. He still didn't understand why she did that. Was it a Lunar sickness or something related to her being a cyborg? Maybe it was even earthen. He didn't have time to do research on it, with running the country. It didn't matter to him what it was anyway. Just that it looked like she was dying the two times he had witnessed it.
He walked over to his bottom drawer, pulling her old and dirty foot out. He twirled it in his hands. The foot was far too small for her, it must have been painful to use. A wave of guilt fell over him, remembering what he had said to her. You're even more painful to look at than she is. He flinched at to memory, her face not contorting in hate or madness, but in hurt and betrayal.
And then he had thrown her away to the Queen, like common criminal. Hoping to save a cause that, he already knew at the time, was hopeless.
He wanted to see her, so bad. But he didn't know what to say. 'Sorry I thought of, talked to you and treated you like trash. Want to make amends and kiss?'
Yeah, that would go well.
Passing the foot from hand to hand, he remembered something Torin and he had exchanged, when they were discussing Princess Selene.
"They never found a body…"
"They found what was left of one."
He punched the wall. He was such an idiot. He didn't know whether to rejoice or to wallow in abject misery.
He had found who he was looking for.
She didn't seem as corrupt as her relatives.
She actually seemed to care about the affect of the plague on humans.
And he had given her a reason for revenge.