Disclaimer: All of these characters are borrowed from the game Bioshock Infinite, and I do not own or have any rights to them. Oh, and there are major spoilers in this story. Don't read unless you've finished the game.
Second Run - A Bioshock Infinite Fanfiction
Chapter 14: Long Ways From Home
The tear closed as Anna sighed with relief. Booker took her hand and pulled her in to embrace her, "C'mon, we gotta get moving if you wanna get back to Columbia."
They let go and started walking side-by-side farther inland. He saw some lights in the distance and figured that'd be where the nearest town was. Anna looked around, mesmerized by the new sights that her eyes feasted on. She sped up her pace and put her hand on a tree, "Look Mr. DeWitt! It's a tree! I've read about them in my books, but I never thought they were this big!"
A half grin appeared on his face, "Just call me Booker."
"Oh, okay... Booker." He could tell it was a bit uncomfortable to her, but nonetheless he was getting tired of being called "mister." This went on for quite a while. Anna looking at something she's never seen before, explaining them to Booker how she's read about them, then going on to tell how amazing it looks in person.
Booker didn't mind the fact she was overly excited about being out of Columbia, but he didn't want to go back himself. They're finally free now, and yet Anna still wants to go back. It bothered him quite a bit, but he also didn't want to lose her again.
She was ahead of him by now, and he watched her dainty body skip across the groves of the forest happily. He smiled as she continued to gesture him to different plants and animals that she's never seen before, and how she presented her immense knowledge of every single item. He looked at her face as her bright blue eyes pierced his. She was happy, which made him happy.
They continued to walk for hours on end, time not bothering either of them. They were free for a moment, and they cherished the relaxation that came with it. Eventually they came upon a dirt road, "Where do you want to go now, Booker? We can keep cutting through the forest to get to the city, or follow this road. I presume the road is safer, but it would take longer."
He thought about it for a minute, then hoof beats came from the distance, slowly getting louder, "I think our answer may be coming up."
A horse drawn cart came closer, Booker and Anna waving their hands in the air to get the driver's attention. He slowed down in front of the two, "Where you headed?"
Booker stepped forward, "Closest city. You think you could give us a lift?" The man waved his hand, "Yeah, sure. Just hop on to the back of the cart. It'll be a little tight, but just move some of the produce and you'll fit."
Booker grabbed Anna's hand and led her to the back. He let her place her feet on his hands to give her a boost up and followed right behind her. There baskets of fruit and some bales of hay on the cart, and Booker made a chair for Anna out of the hay. He sat on the floor as Anna intently looked at the sky, "Hey, we're all good back here!"
The farmer snapped his reins and the horse began to pull once more. Anna gave a warm look to him, "Booker, tell me something." He looked up at her, "What?"
She anxiously played with her thimble, "How did it end up like this?"
"What do you mean?"
"Why did you give me away?"
He sighed, "I guess I should start from the very beginning, huh?"
"That would be preferable."
"Well, here goes. Back when I was 16, I enlisted for the 7th Cavalry Regime. Little did I know that a few months later I would participate in Wounded Knee."
She tiled her head, "What was Wounded Knee?"
Booker shook his head, "You don't want to know. I did terrible things there Elizabeth, things that I couldn't shake off. A year after the that I met a beautiful woman."
"Yes. But fate had something else in mind for the two of us. She became pregnant, with you. Day of the operation came, but only one made it out. The doctors kept pushing me to give you a name, and I could barely think of one. So I said Anna."
"My name is Anna?"
"I can start calling you that if you like."
She thought about it for a second, "I think I'll stick with Elizabeth. I don't want you thinking of me as Anna, might be back some of your memories."
Maybe she's right. Maybe if I think of her as Elizabeth now, it'll help me forget. He continued on with his story, "After that I got worse. I wasn't ready to be a single father, hell, I wasn't ready to be a father at all. I worked for the Pinkertons, but got discharge because I was too violent. I went on to become a private investigator, but alcoholism and gambling took over. Soon my gambling debt was so high, people wanted my head. I was scared, Elizabeth. I was young, stupid, and scared. Then a man, Robert, offered to pay off my debt, and being 18 I gladly accepted. Then he told me the conditions. 'Bring us the girl, and wipe away the debt.' I thought about it for a few days, but more and more people started to threaten me, and that pushed me over the edge. So I gave you to him. That was the worse decision of my life, and I realized it. But I was too late. I tried to find you, and I saw Robert in an alleyway with a tear in front of him. Comstock was there, and he was holding you as Robert and Rosalind kept the tear open. I grabbed Comstock as he stepped through the tear, but he wrestled me off. The tear closed down and you reached out at me. But not all of you made it. The tear cut off -"
"My finger," Elizabeth cut him off. There was a moment of silence between them before Booker continued, "Then I rotted away in my office for the next 20 years. I had no clue what to do with my life. Everything seemed pointless. The two most important people in my life were gone, and I was the only one to blame. Then Robert came back and offered me a way to get my life back. To get you back."
"And that's where we are now? You came to Columbia to get me, and here we are. Away from it all."
Booker was a little hesitant, "Well, not exactly. But before I tell you, you have to give me your word."
A quizzical look came on her face, "And that would be?"
"Once we kill Comstock. THIS Comstock, we're done. We go on with our lives and forget about Columbia."
"I'm not quite sure I follow Booker, but I guess I'll agree. What else is there? Everything you've said lined up."
"You forget, there was another Booker. This next part may get confusing for you. I went to Columbia and saved you Elizabeth. We were in Emporia, on our way to Comstock House to get away from all the Vox madness. But before we could make it, Songbird took you. I tried to go after you, but as I crossed the bridge to Comstock House, I unknowingly stepped through a tear. I went through Comstock House, and I could hear you screaming in pain. Believe me, that was the worst thing I've ever heard in my life. When I came to the end I saw you. An older version of you. She explained to me that she had brought me to her universe, one that was farther along its timeline, through the tear at the bridge. She told me that I would just get killed by Songbird if I tried to rescue you. Then she gave me a note that was a cipher for you, and sent me back to the original universe, but 6 months had already passed. From there I saved you, we killed Comstock, and we destroyed the siphon. Then you showed you and a lot of other Elizabeths killed me back at Wounded Knee in hopes of never letting Comstock happen. After that I have no clue what happened. I just remember being back in my office, and I looked for you, but you weren't there. The Luteces talked to me, and brought me back to Columbia to save you again. THAT'S where we are now."
She shook her head, "You weren't kidding when you said confusing."
The farmer spoke up, "You city folk are too confusing for my taste. Experimenting with the universe and all that. I prefer growing vegetables."
The three laughed and didn't talk about Columbia or Booker's past for the rest of the ride. Elizabeth could tell it bothered him, so she didn't want to pry. An hour later, they arrived at the city. They hopped off the cart and said their thanks and goodbyes to the farmer. Booker looked around and headed for a nearby grocery shop, "Stay close to me Elizabeth."
"Okay Booker, I'm right behind you."
They stepped in and Booker headed for the cashier, "Excuse me miss, where are we?"
"Southampton. Why? You two new around here?"
"No, we just got a bit lost. Thanks."
They left the store and Booker stood there for a moment. "Booker, what's Southampton?"
He looked at her, "It's a city just a little bit away from New York."
"What are you thinking?"
"I'm thinking we need to go to New York. Might be able to convince the Pinkertons to help me. Slim chance, but it's worth a try."
"Well, whatever you decide to do, I'm with you."
It warmed his heart knowing that Elizabeth fully trusted him. He wasn't so sure how exactly they'd get to New York. He actually preferred if they walked there. He wanted to take his time, and to spend as much of it with Elizabeth as he could.
Reality snapped at him as he heard Elizabeth cry out, "Booker! Over there!"
He turned to where she pointed, and a bright light flash. For a second he didn't know what it was, but the image became clearer. It was a tear.
Sorry for taking so long with this! Finals week has been hell. Okay, not really, but I needed to study for them to make sure that I passed with an A. Anyways, guess what that means? Summer! So more updates!
EDIT: I'm SO sorry for not posting in a LONG time, but I've hit a major writer's block with the next chapter. I just can't find the right words to put in. I've literally wrote it 8 different times, and I was just never satisfied. And I figured, if I'm not satisfied, how could the readers? Hopefully the block will find the heart to move after these agonizing weeks.