AUTHOR'S NOTE: After several playthroughs of Mirror's Edge, I finally found all Runner bags and the hidden messages and drawings left by the mysterious "Janitor". My theories on who this person are revealed in this fanfic. Title is subject to change…still thinking about it. Any suggestions?
Chapter 1 – Prologue
"You should be right on top of it now. See it anywhere?" Merc asked into the comms unit, squinting at a little yellow dot that represented a Runner's bag; the rapidly approaching green dot was Faith.
"Might be on top of one of these storage units," Faith replied, safely clearing an electrical fence. A small AC unit served as the perfect springboard to clear the next electrical fence, wincing when a rat, startled by her sudden appearance, scurried straight into the high-voltage fence.
"That building to your left, Faith."
Faith backed up, then sprinted towards the storage unit, her speed carrying her high enough to grip the edge. She hauled herself to the roof, stepping over two vents. She looked around her, eyes resting on the Arland skyscraper. It was two three months before Robert Pope would begin his campaign against Callaghan for the position of mayor over their city. Knowing this place, that would never happen.
Today's work was easy; find a bag, drop it off at a safe drop off, do a trade-in with another Runner, then repeat the cycle. She had already seen Celeste a few times, mirroring her own work of running and jumping on the rooftops of the city. It was quiet work, but Faith loved every second of it. The feeling of freedom as she flew across the rooftops, vaulting over fences and rolling after a heart-stopping leap between buildings…
This was what Faith lived for.
"Got a little Blue traffic a few blocks north of you…take it easy and loop around 'em."
Faith's thoughts had wandered, and she mentally scolded herself.
At any time, someone in the surrounding buildings could spot her, recognize the colors of a Runner (not to mention they were standing on a roof), and call the police. And Faith knew, especially in the shadow of Pope's building at Arland, that she was in the red zone. Pope supported the Runners, but his supportive attitude didn't always reach to his employees.
Faith crouched down to pluck the bag up when something caught her eye. Throwing the bag over her shoulder, she leaned down to look at a very familiar symbol on the ground, seemingly drawn and colored in with a crayon:
I 3 88.7
The heart was colored bright pink, and it looked relatively new...
Faith was confused; only she and Kreeg used this route, and she knew for a fact that neither one of them carried crayons in their pocket. She also knew that no other person could access the top of these roofs without a staff-only staircase. Faith knew there were still a few gutsy traceurs who, although not Runners themselves, still refused to conform and run around the rooftops, but they couldn't possibly know the Runners' secret radio station…could they?
"What? Spot a Blue?"
"No. Actually, I need you to look something up for me…" Faith said, turning away from the strange symbol and sliding off the roof.
"Sure. What do you need?" Merc asked, surprised.
"I need you to look up every recorded route of Runners who have ran the West Arland route."
"What's this about? Why do you need it?"
Faith didn't answer as she performed a daring leap across two buildings, making her way towards the subway station downtown.
Merc should have known better than to ask. "Alright, I'll pull them up. You headin' over here now?"
"Nah. Not yet. Gonna go fill in for Prix," Faith answered, her breathing even and in rhythm with her thudding footsteps.*
"Oh, and grab a pizza on the way home, will ya?"
"Sure thing, Merc."
2nd AUTHOR'S NOTE: I hadn't expected to actually write this, but it sort of came to me as I realize…Mirror's Edge's story is a lot deeper and more complicated than the first glance shows. It's taking me many playthroughs, explorations, and digs through the On-Mirror's-Edge forums, but I think I've finally got it. But enough of my blabbering. I tried my best to write Faith's traceur/Runner/parkour movements as well as I could, and although I'm not nearly as talented as Gramm in that department, I think you get the point…right? ;D
* Prix is an original character made up for this story, but she won't make another appearance throughout the story. If you look at the concept art of other Runners besides Jacknife, Faith, Celeste, and Merc, you can see a girl with a red shirt on, grey sweatpants, and spiky, boy-ish hair. I consider that girl in my mind, as "Prix".