A/N hiya! Next chapter is here! Sorry it's not that exciting, but the next chapter will be, I promise!
Shouts echo through the corridor outside, drifting through the thin door and invading my huddled form under the covers. I reluctantly uncurl and stretch, glancing at the shiningly new alarm clock on the bedside table.
Dread settles as a tangible thing in my stomach. Time to choose.
I wriggle my toes in the carpet, thinking. I have read and re-read that list countless times, and found nothing that strikes even remotely true to myself. Nothing at all.
What on earth am I going to do? This is like choosing day all over again.
I stand up and ready myself for the day, trying to clear my mind, unsuccessfully. I decide to head over to Tobias' again, to see if he can talk me into choosing something.
I knock on the door, but it isn't closed properly and swings open. I am greeted by a tired groan from the pile of blankets on the bed.
"Wake up sleepyhead." I say, pushing the pile to the floor, making it emit a soft 'oof'. "You have to help me decide my future."
"Future can wait. Sleep now." Tobias moans.
"Not for long. I have to tell Max what I've chosen before the day is up."
Tobias groans and stretches up off the floor. "Alright, alright. Get out of here. I'll meet you in the pit in ten minutes."
I nod and go out the door. I head to the pit, and am waiting considerably longer than ten minutes before Tobias shows up.
"I need some breakfast. I can't have life changing conversations on an empty stomach." He says. I agree. This conversation certainly will be so.
After we have grabbed a couple of apple and cinnamon muffins from the cafeteria, we head to the chasm, and find a spot where no one can see us from the pit, and our voices are drowned out by the rushing water.
"So." Tobias says.
"So." I echo.
"I don't know. That's just it."
"Hmm. Well, you're smart. You're brave. And you're selfless."
I raise my eyebrows. "If you say so."
"There are some jobs that they don't put on that list, because no one wants them or they have too many requirements. But you might fit those requirements. So... Tell me, Tris... How would you like to be a Dauntless Leader?"
"What? Really? I can't be a leader so soon. Can I?"
"Yeah. They offered the job to me after my initiation, because I ranked first. They should offer it to you, too."
"Wow. Well. That would be... Great. If I was a leader, I could reinstate some of the old Dauntless values. And I'd have just as much power as Eric!"
Tobias smiles. "I'm sure you'd be great. Just wait around, I'm sure someone will ask you about it today."
We fall silent, both contemplating something deeper but not voicing our thoughts. Dauntless has certainly fallen reputation-wise in the past years, and I am determined to fix that. All the things that are good about us; freedom, bravery, standing up for the weak, honour, chivalry and a sense of who is good and right, those things are all fading. And I must change this.
In the cafeteria, the Dauntless crowd is even rowdier than usual, presumably in preparation for tonight.
Uriah warns me not too eat too much dinner, because "there are tons of canapés at the party", whatever that means.
I am finishing off my meager plate of chicken and rice when I feel a presence behind me, like a sixth sense. The presence is dark and strong and demanding of attention. I turn around, as called for.
"Stiff." greets Eric. Oh great, what could he want me for?
"Hey, Eric." I say.
Eric twitches his nose, somewhat contemptuously. "The other leaders have asked me to..." He stops.
Oh. I know what this is. "To what?" I ask nonchalantly.
Eric scowls, his piercings clinking together. "You ranked number one. You have the option to become a Dauntless leader. Do you want the job or not?" He growls this, he obviously doesn't want me to take it.
"Yes, thanks Eric. I would love to be a Dauntless leader." I attempt to be as polite as possible without sounding completely insincere.
Surprise crosses Eric's pierced features, transforming them into pure anger. He leans closer to me, his breath hot in my ear, "You had better watch out, Stiff. Don't challenge my leadership, or I'll set your little buddy Peter and his friends on you. Or, I might even attend to you myself."
"Well, you had better wait for them to heal from the last time I beat them up, then." I snap, and stand up from the table. I don't care that he is a Dauntless leader. Because I am too. "Happy New Year to you, Eric." I push him out of my way and walk out. It is just then that I realize that the whole of Dauntless is silent, and was watching me.
I head to Max's office. When I open the door, he is sitting in his chair with his feet on the desk, eyes closed.
"Max." I say.
He opens one eye. "What the hell do you want?"
"My job. You said I had to choose before today, right?"
"I've made my choice."
"Well, what is it? Spit it out."
"I want to be a Dauntless Leader."
Max raises his eyebrows. "I must say I am surprised. I mean, you did get the top rank and all, but... A stiff? A dauntless leader?"
"If I wasn't sure, I wouldn't be here." I say, my voice clipped.
"Alright, alright." He takes out a form and starts writing on it. "Beatrice Prior- Dauntless Leader."
A/N there you have it. Please reviews! I love reviews! Reviews get virtual cookies!