Page 5 of Revelations (The End 5)

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“No, Vic. They’re tired. Let them rest for the night. The ship isn’t leaving tomorrow. There’s still enough time,” Bucky said.

Victor nodded; then, he turned and looked at Stephen.

“Hey, Stephen, how are you doing?” he asked with a lopsided smile. Stephen nodded absentmindedly. The guy had been a recluse for most of the journey, only speaking with Bucky and a few migrants occasionally.

He returned his mind to the thoughts of Suzanne. Was it safe to trust her?

???

30th November 2021

12:18 pm

South Plain Field, New Jersey.

USA.

Xander sat alone on the stairs, reading ‘NMap for Dummies’. He was almost done with the textbook. That was the third book he had read.

The other migrants were scattered all around the area. He had snuck away from the crowd so that he could study. Grayson wouldn’t leave him to study in peace. She kept pestering him to tell her what was going on. He couldn’t tell her, so he had to avoid her.

By the next day, they would be in New York and he would see Suzanne again. His work would begin. He had to be ready before then.

Someone walked into the building and Xander looked up. It was Joel. Xander sighed.

“How are you doing?” Joel asked.

Xander nodded. “I’m fine, Joel. Thanks. I know what you want to ask.”

Joel nodded and tilted his head.

“Really? Then what is it?”

“Why am I reading this book? I’m sorry. I can’t say anything.”

“Please, Xander. Talk to me.”

Xander bowed his head. He wished Joel would stop. Joel had not asked him about it since the day at the bookshop; however, he knew Joel was still curious.

Joel sighed and went to sit beside Xander.

“You might have noticed how attached I have become to you and your sister. You might also have noticed that I don’t have any family with me on this journey. You guys have become the closest I’ve had to a family. Your well-being has become my concern. I’ve watched a lot of people die during this journey. I don’t want to see you guys die too. I know you may not see me in the same light; however, please just give me the assurance that all is well, and there is no danger awaiting us,” he said.

Xander looked up at Joel. Joel’s words were true. He and Harper had stuck with Xander, Grayson, Nia, and Prim throughout the journey, helping them meet up. Joel cared.

“Can you keep a secret?” he asked Joel. Joel nodded.

Xander sighed; then, he began to speak. When he was done, Joel nodded his head.

“Well, at least, you’re not going to be doing anything really dangerous,” Joel said.

Xander managed a laugh but it was too nervous to sound real. Joel looked at him.

“Are you sure this is real?”

Xander rolled his eyes and looked away.

“I’m asking because, if it is, there is almost no way to stop it. I can’t believe we’ve been fooled all this time. We left the safety of our homes, thinking to be safe in another country,” Joel said in a soliloquy.


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