202 Days Until Collapse And the Uncertain End (Part 8)
Zeydar awoke with a gasp, pulling himself from the floor that was drenched in sweat. His head pounded with the lights that flickered, or perhaps his heart beat. He was not sure. Everything was far too bright, and he had no idea how long he had been out. Everything was eerily quiet save the thunderous sound of the shattered lights, but he knew that was his senses picking up on them for louder than they were. Magic circled around him, begging him to use it. His body was unscathed, and he felt refreshed in a way that told him he had healed himself when he had passed out.
The Council room was empty, not a soul to be found. They had not found him yet, and the Tower was still standing. Perhaps they were waiting to see if it would fall. Perhaps not much time had passed at all. The immediate danger was over, he knew, but the other danger was coming. Pulling himself to his feet, he moved from the Superior Council room and outside. Spreading his magic out he felt the city evacuated still. There was little to no life on the CloudCity floor, perhaps scavengers looking for things in Circle abandoned houses. He would not check.
Books. Sweet Dreams. Flee.
His order of thoughts made his prerogative clear. Hurrying towards the library, Zeydar did not take time to examine the damage of the Tower and City. He needed to get as many magic books and archives as he could. For Kony. Because if he had to flee and try to break every control the Superiors had over him — the Superiors who had caused this mayhem to begin with — then he needed Kony. In the library he ran to a computer and took a virtual book, requesting access to all the digital copies of every single manuscript in the library. He gave his code to override the restricted books, and watched as they were downloaded. It would not be tracked with the library digitally downloaded, but it would take time.
Reading the time required, he left the library and went towards his room. It did not take him much time to get to his home, stealing a car in order to move across campus quickly and haphazardly. He drove over hills and terrain through courtyards and across campus outside of the designated paths. In his room he found it a mess, shattered lights, broken walls and floors, his clothes and possessions scattered. Signs of the collapse. Gathering clothes, supplies, and his most prized possessions — which were no more than Tyler’s staff and a few photos — Zeydar left to go to the medical wing. He didn’t know where the Sweet Dreams were kept but he had a feeling it would be there.
The travel to the medical wing took a bit more time than it took to get to his room. Part of this was because of the collapse having moved buildings and created a collapse, part of it was because his head was pounding and he couldn’t figure out where he was at times or what he was doing. Zeydar knew, instinctively, that he was getting dangerously close to when the Military Mages would return to start checking the Tower. He did not have much time to avoid them.
In the medical building, Zeydar requested access to the bottom floors figuring that if the Superiors kept their drugs anywhere, it would be there. The doors opened to a laboratory that was everything Zeydar expected for a lab designated for the creation of Sweet Dreams. Gathering the Sweet Dream tablets, he packed as much as he could figuring he would ration it when he was safe. He would have to and not a moment before.
Zeydar looked at a tablet, feeling his mind scattering and aching for it. Was it worth it? Was it worth losing this power? This control? It would make everything go away, but could endanger him. Opting for the smallest dose possible with the highly concentrated version, Zeydar went to take the drug. He then stuffed the rest of it away into a lock box, that he hoped would deter him from getting more out. He needed to deter himself from falling back in, but he also needed the lights to stop blinding him.
He could feel his mind begin to clear, as a haze grew and the pounding the sounds faded by a bit. It turned out the lights weren’t extremely bright, but super dim, and that the sounds were no more than the sounds a mouse would make. The lab was more of a disaster because he had entered than because of the fall. He didn’t even want to think about what the campus would look like from him driving, because it was probably way worse due to him. Not that he had time to think of it. The desire within him raked at his skin, forcing his nails to claw at the box to open them for more.
“No.” He stopped himself by forcing it into his box. He needed to leave, not to relapse so badly that he could never escape. He could not trust himself to control himself. He had to trust himself to ignore it, ignore it for now and escape. Get out of Valaria and then he could have as much as he needed.
Get out of Valaria. Get out. Get safe. Books. Sweet Dreams. Flee.
Leaving the medical center, Zeydar made his way back to the library right as the books finished uploading. Grabbing the digital book, he shut its connection and tracker off, disconnecting it from the server despite the warnings and made his way to the armory. He stole a few Staffs, specifically for Kony since new Stars always broke many of them in learning their powers, before leaving Star campus all together. He’d have to disappear into the Tower. Disappear and get to the place where the others would find him and then he could have as much Sweet Dreams as he wanted because then he would be safe.
Even if he wanted it right now.
A little wouldn’t — no. He had to get out of Valaria.
And so he left.