He was back, Alex looked at the quirky little room they had started their journey in.
A damp nostalgic cave, the only exit had been replaced however, the space now sported a wooden doorway.
He scanned the surroundings more closely, the room was just as he recalled it, torches were strewn unto the walls along with weird glowing mushrooms on the floor.
Even the floor and ceiling were more or less as flat as he recalled them both.
'Still where is everyone else? Did she lie? Am I gonna have to do everything over? Alone?' Alex frowned, only slightly nervous, weeks of danger made him have thicker skin.
Looking down at himself Alex noted his grey shirt was back to pristine condition, he also had his running shoes and sports pants.
It was what he had worked out in last week, James had been there with him.
"Man, this is so weird." Alex laughed at his odd old habit of talking to himself.
'Oh, man. I had a whole damn speech ready...' Alex chuckled nervously, dread was beginning to knaw at his thoughts, he wasn't ready for this!
Nervous Alex tried to sort out his thoughts, he had to face Jessica and let her know there were no hard feelings, things just didn't work out, with the whole apocalypse thing coming he understood too.
He also wanted to thank both Eian and Sarah for their help and bid them a firm good-bye also, they had problems but those two had been very helpful.
More than anything though, he wanted to go home, take his bike out, call up James, buy some beer and get busted.
Maybe even hit that new spot they'd always wanted to go to, this whole adventure had been one thing after the next.
Alex blinked at the sound and slowly turned towards the door.
'Oh shit!' Alex scanned everywhere, ran over to a torch and grabbed it.
"Hey! You in there? The door won't open from this side!" Eian's voice asked behind the door.
Alex lowered the torch, feeling only slightly foolish.
"Yeah man." Alex smiled, it looked like this really was it.
Taking one last deep breath he walked forward and turned the knob.
The room was cozy, Sarah found this new room odd, it connected to three identical rooms as the original room they had originally awoken in.
In-front of her were Alex and Eian, both were silent and scanning everywhere for a few seconds.
"So I can say Jessica won't be coming." Sarah finished.
"....yeah." Alex replied with little emotion.
'Odd...he doesn't looked depressed nor even remotely sad. What happened? Did they really break up?" Sarah frowned at the puzzle, before shrugging it off as none of her business.
"Well, I guess I'll start." Alex stepped forward.
Sarah stood there looking at him as he wore a warm smile, he seemed confident which added to her confusion.
"Sarah." Alex started.
"Huh?" Sarah blinked at her name.
"I just wanted to thank you for everything you've done, you really helped us out and I really appreciate it. I know I wasn't the easiest guy to get along with, so thank you as well for putting up with me." Alex gave her a winning smile.
Sarah gaped, who was this and what did he do with Alex?
"Eian." Alex said.
"Yeah?" Eian looked equally as confused as Sarah, he even took a step back.
"Thanks also man. You were cool this whole trip, er...if you're ever close by don't be a stranger. You too Sarah." Alex seemed to add the last bit as an after thought.
"...Okay?" Eian scratched his head, he smiled obviously trying to cover the awkwardness of the situation.
Alex quickly proceeded to give them his contact information.
Sarah quickly forgot it, she had no intention of ever seeing him again, he wasn't the absolute worst person in the world, but she didn't really like ot be around 'cool' kids.
Besides that she also lived very far, and she was never really that friendly to any of them.
"I just came here to say goodbye. It felt rude to just leave after everything." Sarah clarified.
"Oh...That's cool I guess." Alex smiled at her as well.
Another awkward moment later Sarah decided to get the worst over with first.
"Before everything's over. I actually wanted to thank you too, Alex." Sarah squirmed, biting her lip, she'd rather cough up blood rather than this.
"Yeah?" Alex turned to look at her with a small smile.
"Yes. You saved my life back there. Well...if it were all real you know." Sarah felt the walls caving in on her, both guys were looking at her like she grew another head.
Alex for his part looked a little shock, before he gave her a smile and shook his head.
"No worries. We were a team. You saved my life more than once too. Plus as you said, it wasn't really....well real. So yeah let's call it even." Alex scratched his head and had a bit of coloring in his face.
'Is he blushing?' Sarah nearly barked out a laugh at the sight, but managed to hold back.
Glad beyond measure that was over with Sarah continued.
"Thanks also Eian. You were a great help." Sarah gave him a warm smile, he was the one whom had given her the least headache.
"...No prob." Eian looked to be in deep thought.
Soon, as no one was speaking, everything quickly became awkward.
So Sarah decided to at least try to break the ice.
"Everything's going to change you know. The world's going to get a lot more dangerous, so you should try to adapt." She looked at Alex, she wasn't really worried about Eian as he performed admirably.
"....roger." Alex smile died, he even sighed and looked at the floor."
"Healer's are going to be valuable though." As Sarah spoke the words, Alex's eyes shot up at her surprised.
"What do you mean!?" Alex looked near panic and spoke in a rush.
Sarah flinched at his tone, mildly startled.
"Oh. I mean that you guys will help keeping people alive." Sarah quickly finished, Alex visibly relaxed.
"Roger, sorry I...I'm just a bit jumpy with everything." Alex smiled, but it clearly wasn't his sincere one.
'Did...he just lie to me?' Sarah looked at him funny, she spent a while doing that trying to figure him out.
"Er...Is something on my face?" Alex kept his friendly smile, but Sarah though she saw worry there.
"....No. It's nothing." Sarah decided it wasn't worth prying, he wasn't the first person to lie to her and he wouldn't be the last, Alex visibly relaxed.
'Well. I think that's it.' Sarah went quite.
Eian looked at his two team-mates, honestly speaking he didn't know what to say.
They had been through some hard times together sure, but when he really thought about it they were only together for convenience sake.
Sarah had made it quite clear she was only here to say goodbye and Eian felt it was an appropriate response, in the end they were only just strangers forced to cooperate.
Alex had made it clear he was okay meeting up with them again, he seemed to even mean it, a reaction which Eian found a little stranger than Sarah's especially for a normal person, but he seemed like a happy go lucky guy so...maybe it was a fit?
'Then again...I wouldn't really mind hanging out.' Eian shrugged he didn't have that many friends, it was mostly just the vast distance that deterred him, along with the fact it seemed like the damn end of the world was coming.
Strictly speaking Alex only lived a state away so it wasn't so crazy to think they could meet, Sarah lived way up north somewhere in Canada and Eian never wanted to meet up with Jessica again, thankfully she lived far far away.
Now Eian realized something, without a clear set goal in front of them, they were just strangers awkward around one another, each on of them had set a small distance and was idling about.
'How do we even leave?' Eian looked about the room, it had a few couches about and Alex had sat down on one, Sarah was equally scanning the place.
He felt a little eager to leave, it had been a while and he was seriously worried for his mom, he lived with her so he was anxious to check up on her.
Then he planned to call his both his grand-parents, after that he planned rush-stock up on food and essentials.
Ul had been rather vague on the impending crisis, but Eian knew he needed lots of water, and food.
'The question is...do I use my savings or not?' Eian cringed, he'd been working for a while now to save for college, but the end of the world wasn't going to wait on him.
"Greetings." A new feminine voice emerged from somewhere.
"Fuck!" Eian spooked and shot up, Alex and Sarah had similar reactions, Alex falling to the floor and Sarah hands raised.
"Who are you?" Sarah demanded.
"Can we help you?" Alex was climbing back on his couch.
"I am Myru. An oracle." A silver haired blind-folded youth smiled at them, facing Sarah.
"An oracle? A future reader? Like Jessica?" Sarah seemed to know a bit more than Eian, so he didn't interrupt.
"In part, but mostly no. I have come to let you know your final team-mate is safe, but she is under heavy stress thus decided not to come." Myru responded.
"What kind of stress?" Alex asked this time, looking at her questioningly.
"She will be fine." Myru answered casually, with a tone which brokered no argument, Alex himself let out a breathe and relaxed on his couch.
"Is there something else? I am anxious to get home. Is there a way to do that?" Sarah asked, Eian agreed wholeheartedly.
"Yes. This is the end of our good-will project. At least where it pertains to your world. A bit of advice sparkling." Myru smiled at Sarah knowingly.
Eian frowned, he hadn't ever heard someone referred to in that way.
Glancing at Sarah he noticed a conflicted expression on her face.
"A thread of fate is not so easily severed, nor ignored. Remember well. Your soul is already claimed, careful with which forces you partake of help, least they try to claim a Dragon's share." Myru smiled condescendingly.
"What does that mean?! I'm no one's property!" Sarah raised her voice, an angry look on her face.
"I have nothing more to add. Good-bye." Myru shrugged, with a flick of her wrist Sarah vanished.
Eian burst into cold sweat, this person clearly held significant authority in this place.
The stranger 'Myru' turned to look at Alex, her smile never faltered, not once.
"You walk ahead, blind to fault, blind to greed, blind to evil, do not turn your eyes away from the seeds of doubt which grow in you, paranoia is a trait which usually keeps many a wise man alive. Take care of whom you trust." Myru declared before Alex.
"What-" Alex started, but vanished with a flick of Myru's wrist.
Eian frowned, he wasn't liking this at all, she seemed to be giving them some type of future warning.
Compared to Jessica, this person was the real deal, not someone new to her powers.
As Myru turned to him, Eian instinctively swallowed dryly, he hoped it wasn't some premonition of doom.
"What holds value? What do you fight for? What would you die for?" Myru asked.
Eian blinked uncomprehending.
"In a world of destruction men need a cause, a reason to strive forward. I see you shrouded in darkness, lost without guiding light. Find your light, clasp it close if you wish to live and not just be alive." Myru spoke in riddles.
The last thing Eian felt was confusion, before the world washed away in white.