Terror rips me apart inside as I run through the street, my long locks of azure hair streaming behind me.
Leather boots tap the ground as my pursuer, who's the same age, comes closer and closer.
I can't let her catch me.
"Skylla Dartlet! Halt at once, or face harsher judgement!" she demands.
The words themselves would've made me tremble, if she hadn't wheezed them, out of breath.
"Not a chance!" I tell her.
She growls and runs even faster.
I know this city well. I can shake her off my trail.
I turn right, then left, then left again. Scattering pigeons and earning glares from stray cats, I soon make it into an alley.
I have a few seconds until she catches up.
Smirking, I lift my arm and press a button on a special wristwatch.
It'll teleport me somewhere dozens of miles away, so I have time to rest and plan strategy while my pursuer tries to locate me.
The familiar whir is like music to my ears, and the flash of white light surrounds me.
But just before I'm teleported, I feel an iron grip on my wrist.
With dismay, I stare into the stubborn violet eyes of my pursuer, and we both wind up on a beach.
I yank my arm back, but to no avail.
She's caught me.
I stand on the shore, panting. She does the same, to have enough breath to speak.
"Skylla Dartlet." her voice is stern, but I can tell it's forced. "Several misdemeanors. Countless violations."
She removes my special wristwatch. "The Agency revokes your teleportation abilities."
Like a robot, she says, "You'll have to be detained. Disobedience is unforgivable."
I feel angry. At her. At the Agency. At myself. At everything.
I ask, "Do you even know what it was I did?"
For a split second, her sharp gaze weakens.
Then she steels herself. "Terrible things that were clearly not allowed."
"Not allowed?" I scoff. "Keeping my brother alive was against the Agency's ridiculous rules, even though it was the Agency's fault?"
She scowls fiercely. "What are you talking about?"
I huff and gaze at the setting sun. Anywhere but her intimidating violet eyes.
"He was dying, Lakyra. Because of one of the enemies we fought together."
"The one that-?"
"Yeah. Her. She came back and wounded him."
"... I-I didn't know."
"Of course not. We stopped working together and lost touch long ago. Plus, I knew how much of a rule follower you are. And what I had in mind for my brother..."
Violet eyes now soft, Lakyra opens her mouth to protest, but I cut her off.
"I teleported him constantly to delay the poison's effects."
Water laps at my wet shoes, and I curl my toes.
I grab Lakyra's hand and grip it tightly. Emotion surges through my voice as I tell her, "And it was working! But then the Agency sent two of the best after us."
She bites her lip. "Me. And the other one killed him, right?"
"Yeah," I whisper numbly. "All because of the Agency's outrageous, inflexible rules. And now you're here to bring me to their twisted 'justice'."
I watch as the gentle breeze makes my old partner's curly magenta hair sway a bit.
Lakyra's voice is a bit high as she says, "Skylla, how...?"
"How what?" I snap.
"How did we become so distant? I know you would've told me and asked for my help about a year ago. But then we were suddenly reassigned..."
I hold my breath in anticipation of what she'll say next.
"And it was so confusing. Why were we reassigned? We made a good team."
"Because," I choke out, "I asked for it."
"W-what? Skylla, you..?"
A huge burden comes off my chest as I confess the truth.
"Lakyra, I asked for us to be separated because I developed feelings. Feelings aren't allowed in the agency. Not between partners."
A tear slips down my cheek as I add, "And I couldn't be sure you would feel the same."
Lakyra's silent for a few minutes. Her grip on my wrist loosens. I'm tempted to run, but I don't bother. What's the point, when my old life is gone?
And then Lakyra grabs my shoulders as she lunges forward.
She murmurs, "I can't believe it! I had those same thoughts. I'm sorry I obeyed when I was sent to capture you. Skylla Dartlet, I love you, and I will break every single rule in the world if it means I can be with you."
The sweet scent of candy fills my nostrils and contributes to my lightheadedness as Lakyra kisses me.
I'm stunned. And still grieving. But... Lakyra is with me. We'll figure things out together.
I wrap my arms around Lakyra to pull her even closer as the sun disappears under the horizon.
It's too good to be true. But I'll take it, while it lasts. I love Lakyra so, so much. And she feels the same towards me.