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Month: October 2015

Wait, where’s today’s update?

Hello! Starting today, Impact Day is on hiatus. I don’t know when I’ll resume it again, but it won’t be long, I’m having far too much fun.

While we’re on a break, though, I thought I’d tell you a bit more about the project. You know, if you’re interested. I’m not forcing you to stick around. Or…

No, that would be rude.

The main reason I started Impact Day was because I wanted something to keep me writing on a regular basis. I had the story sitting in my head, and it felt like a perfect fit. The updates were short and focused, which made it easy to maintain them, and even double my productivity in Part 2. The pace felt good, just managing to put a little work out each week.

Of course, with the brevity came a lot of areas that I kind of had to brush past, and I figured now might be a good time to clear a few things up.

First, for the record, Sabrina is both trans, and a woman of colour. I kind of wanted to make that more obvious, but I also wanted it to feel like it wasn’t a big deal, because really, that shouldn’t be a big deal. But, right now, visibility is more important.

I only realised after I’d written it how uncomfortable it was that, despite being a woman of colour, Sabrina was only ‘powerful’ when she used Zoe’s power. Without the knowledge I have as the creator, I left the audience with a character who became more powerful by being white. I actually bumped up last week’s reveal because I was so unhappy with that. The Sabrina in my head is leagues ahead of where she is at the start of the story, but again, visibility.

Anyway, that aside, I hope you’ve been enjoying the story! It’s still got a long way to go, and I’d love for you to stick around for the ride.  Ultimately, I’ll probably re-write and novelise the story, but it won’t be the same.

I’m also looking to expand the media styles I use for this (art, music, audio recordings, small interactive pieces) but right now, finances limit that. If you want to contribute though, please get in touch!

If you have enjoyed it, and want me to keep writing it, I’d really appreciate if you could share it around, get more people reading it. Also, if you can, financial support makes a big difference. You can support me monthly on patreon or purchase anything from my store. It means a lot.

Also, if you have any questions, feel free to ask! I will aim to answer any and all questions sent my way.


Chapter 20 – Take It

I was not prepared for the violence of Ami’s attack. She threw herself at me with a frightening speed, a flick of her wrist turning into a diagonal cut that threatened to behead me on the spot.

Thankfully, as fast as she was, I was faster. My instincts, or more likely Zoe’s instincts, had me leaping backwards, light on my feet, just out of reach of her dancing blade. She was deadly, and brutally efficient, but every move she made, I seemed to know exactly where not to be. My body moved on its own, except that it didn’t, because every move felt intentional, and I felt completely in control.

A wave of what I could only assume was psychic energy knocked me off my feet, but body balanced itself, riding it out, and I landed gracefully on my feet. She never relented, forcing me back, keeping me on the defensive no matter what I did.

It was obvious she knew exactly what she was doing. My powers were the same as Zoe’s, and she must have fought Zoe countless times before. More than that, Zoe was an experienced fighter herself, and I, I was just a scrappy teenager who’d spend most of her life avoiding any sort of violence.

A small part of me wanted to believe that could work in my favour. Like, maybe I’d win by being unpredictable and raw. The rest of my brain, infinitely more practical, squashed that hope quickly. That only worked in movies, and as ridiculous as my life had become, it was far from cinematic.

As if to remind me, Ami’s next attack came closer than ever, her sword actually slicing through the skin of my forearm. It stung, but the wound healed itself within seconds of opening. She observed that with scarcely concealed frustration.

I caught sight of Envy, watching the fight with an expression somewhere between amusement and boredom, reflected in a glass pane. She caught my eye, and frowned at me.

“You’re not going to get far if you don’t fight back,” she said disapprovingly.

“I don’t know how to fight!” I protested, stumbling and recovering from another psychic attack. Ami was showing no signs of getting tired. If anything, she seemed to be energised by the encounter.

“You don’t need to,” Envy said. “Just watch what Ami does.”

“That is not how it works,” I complained, throwing myself sideways as I instinctively avoided a psychic wave. Ami hurled a crate at me, catching me off guard, but I twisted out of the way at the last moment.

“You really think Zoe’s power is just strength and speed, don’t you?” Envy said, sounding disappointed.

Irritated, I grabbed the crate I’d just dodged, and with surprisingly little effort, managed to throw it right back at Ami. A wave of her free hand was enough to deflect it, but she clearly hadn’t expected the retaliation, and I saw her falter briefly.

“Isn’t it?” I asked, my mind racing.

“No. She learns,” Envy said. I leapt behind another stack of crates, trying to focus on what Envy was saying. “Almost instantaneous muscle memory. Just try and do what she does.”

She pointed to a metal bar lying on the ground, on the other side of the warehouse. My eyes focussed on it instantly, despite the distance and darkness. Surely not.

I ran towards it, nearly losing my head to a surprise attack as Ami rounded the pile of crates. Once again, my reflexes saved me, as I literally leapt over her, flipping unnecessarily in the air above her. That hadn’t been intentional, and I wondered if Zoe was something of a showoff, and if I’d inherited any of that. In any case, I hit the ground still running, picking the bar up and twisting on the spot, turning to face Ami.

My body seemed to know exactly how to hold the bar, mimicking Ami’s stance perfectly. The weight felt right, natural, and my eyes scanned Ami’s posture, looking for any hint of her next move.

She lashed out, and my arm responded. I parried the attack easily, a flash of surprise appearing on Ami’s face. Frowning, she redoubled her attack, a vicious flurry of sword strikes that I was barely able to stay ahead of.

It occurred to me that if I stayed on the defensive, she would eventually get the upper hand. I only had to slip up once to lose, and it didn’t seem likely that she’d give up before then. I needed to go on the offensive.

No sooner had that thought crossed my mind than my body responded. A flick of my wrist and the metal bar became a weapon, and Ami had to throw herself out of the way to avoid it. It was obvious she wasn’t nearly as fast or strong as I was. If I could maintain the same level of aggression as her, she didn’t stand a chance.

All of a sudden, a stabbing pain in my gut stopped me in my tracks. Pain felt different while I was channeling Zoe’s power, more like an inconvenience than an actual concern, but it was so unexpected my body didn’t seem to know how to react.

I looked down. My stomach was bleeding, though there was no evidence that anything had cut me. The wound was already healing, but I didn’t understand what had caused it in the first place.

I felt another spike of pain in my shoulder, and more blood began to ooze out. Then my thigh, and my hip. Invisible blades stabbed at me, and I realised only then how much I’d underestimated Ami’s telekinesis. She’d been going easy on me.

A frustrated roar escape me, and I hurled the metal bar at her. It caught her in the shoulder, and she cried out in pain, distracted just long enough for me to charge at her, crossing the distance between us in a moment. I hit her, hard, and she went flying backwards, narrowly avoiding slamming into a pile of crates by creating what appeared to be a telekinetic cushion.

“You’re going to lose,” Envy said, snapping me out of my furious rampage. I snarled at her.

“You wanted this. I thought you’d be happy.”

A psychic blade slashed across my chest, and I danced backwards, realising keeping my distance from Ami was now imperative to my survival.

“Are you ready to listen?” Envy asked, her tone irritatingly petulant.

“I’m all ears,” I growled, still backing away.

Ami began to approach me, blade trailing beside her, a look of murder in her eyes. I wasn’t afraid, not quite, but every instinct in my body was screaming at me to run.

“Then I’m happy,” Envy said, evidently unconcerned about my plight.

“Great. Any chance you could actually be helpful?” I asked, as I scanned the room, looking now for any way to escape without having to get near Ami. I couldn’t see one.

“Take her power,” Envy said, her voice filled with cold power. It wasn’t a suggestion or even an instruction. It was a demand.


I caught her reflection, a serious focus that was quickly replaced by a friendly grin. The change was unsettling. She was unsettling.

“What, you thought it was just a one time deal?” she asked, with an almost childlike glee.

“I didn’t- how?” I asked, as Ami drew ever closer. Psychic hands gripped my throat, lifting me into the air. I was out of time. If Envy was going to do anything, I needed her to do it now.

“Don’t you feel it?” she asked, as the grip around my throat tightened. “Can’t you see it in her eyes? Don’t you see your reflection?”


I locked eyes with Ami, those dazzling, inhuman violet eyes. At first, all I saw was anger, mixed with a little fear, and a lot of determination. Then something shifted, and I saw deeper. I saw her. I saw myself. I saw everything.

“I see it. I feel it,” I said, completely forgetting about the crushing pressure around my neck,

“Now take it,” Envy ordered.

Power swirling around me, through me, into me. I knew what I had to do. I knew how to do it.

“Yes,” I obeyed.

Chapter 19 – A Voice In Your Head

“You really do look like her,” Ami all but purred, her violet eyes appraising me curiously. Her body language was relaxed, but the sort of relaxed you’d seen in a wild animal, ready to pounce at any moment.

I felt a sort of burning, envious feeling as I looked back at her. She was so flawlessly pretty, almost inhumanly so, like something out of a fantasy novel. I found myself taking an immediate and irrational dislike to her.

“Well, I’m not.”

The shadow of a smirk played across her lips, and she began to circle around me, slowly.

“So hostile. Have I offended you?”

Her voice was so gentle, almost soothing. Her movements were graceful, but purposeful like a dancer. Warning bells were ringing through my head.

“You don’t belong here,” I said softly.

“On that, we agree,” she said with a smile. “This place is a dump.”

I hadn’t expected her to agree so readily, or so enthusiastically. There was a flicker of pain and fear in her tone.

“Do you have a plan?” I asked. “For getting back?”

“Yes,” she said, without hesitation. “Finding Haylie.”

“Who?” I asked, then frowned. I thought she was the only one of the invaders I’d yet to meet. Now there was another one? “There’s more of you?”

Ami shrugged, and I was a little caught off guard by her lack of defensiveness. Everyone else had been so mysterious and aloof.

“There should have been four of us, plus Zoe,” she said. I did the math in my head. Ami, Gabriel, now Haylie… that meant there could still be another.

“Are you going to try to capture her again?” I asked, feeling strangely defensive of Zoe.

“No,” Ami said bluntly. “I don’t care about her, not like Gabriel does. I just want to go home.”

I recalled something Zoe had said about him, and something he’d said about her. They referred to each other as brother and sister, though they bore no familial resemblance.

“They’re… siblings?”

“Kind of. It’s complicated,” Ami said with another shrug.

The two of us stood there, not quite sure what to make of the other. Here I was, standing in front of some kind of… superhuman, from another world, and I had nothing to say. No questions to ask.

I realised, with no small degree of alarm, that despite how I felt about Charlie, I agreed with her goals. We did want the same thing. We wanted to protect our city.

Unlike Charlie, though, I didn’t immediately suspect Ami of being dangerous. She wanted to go home. Zoe just wanted to go home. The others probably did too. We didn’t need to fight them.

Envy appeared without warning, a look of withering disdain plastered across her face. She folded her arms, glaring at Ami.

“Attack her,” she hissed, and I felt her fear and anger wash over me. Despite my best efforts to resist it, I could feel the temptation prick at the corners of my consciousness.

“What? Why?” I demanded, forgetting for a moment that Ami would notice my reaction. She looked bemused, if not surprised by it.

“Why? Because she’s the enemy,” Envy said, almost shrieking. Ami tilted her head, at first curious, then, without warning, livid.

“Who are you talking- wait. No, no way.” She stomped toward me, her finger pointed at me accusingly. “Who are you, really?”

Envy’s fear was quickly replaced by my own. Ami felt electric with dangerous energy, her tone thick with a deadly purpose that sent a chill down my spine.


I felt invisible hands grab me by the shoulders, lifting me into the air, slamming me against the wall.

“What did you do to them?” Ami demanded, crossing the distance between us and drawing a short sword as she did. The blade flashed in the moonlight streaming in through the window.

“See? She’s violent and dangerous!” Envy said, racing through reflections to stay near me. “Fight back!”

I did my best to ignore her, focussing on Ami.

“I don’t know who you’re talking about,” I told her, somehow manage to wrest myself free from the ghostly grip that held me against the wall. I fell to the ground, landing with a grace that was not my own.

“Exxo,” she said. The sword was held by her side, not pointed at me, but the threat of it was anything but forgotten. “I can feel them, hear their echo in your mind.”

“Exxo? I don’t know who that-” I realised suddenly what she was talking about. There was only one possible explanation. “Envy. You can hear Envy.”

“A voice in your head,” Ami said, and I noticed her hand tremble. “This power isn’t Zoe’s. She couldn’t have done this. Ugh! I need Haylie.”

Envy’s fear hadn’t subsided. She haunted the peripherals of my vision, begging for attention.

“Ask her what she’s going to do with you now.”

“Let me go,” I told Ami, not much feeling like asking for anything.

Ami looked at me, an internal war waging behind her eyes. She shook her head.

“No. No, I need to find Exxo. You’re my only clue.”

I took all of Envy’s fear, and all of my own, and I crushed it, turned it into fury. When Zoe’s power was running through my, rage came easily. Almost frighteningly so. It was a good thing I’d thrown away the fear already.

“Let. Me. Go.”

The threat in my voice didn’t escape Ami. The phantom hands assaulted me once again, hurling me away from her, back into the wall.

Tell me where you got your power!” she roared.

No!” I shouted back, breaking free of her invisible grip and landing on the balls of my feet ready for a fight.

If she thought she could bully me, she had another thing coming. I would tear her head from her shoulders before I let her take Envy.

Chapter 18 – I Thought We Were Friends

“I did not think this through,” I said aloud, standing in front of an industrial prototyping machine, which seemed to basically be a fancy 3D printer. I was half expecting Envy to chime in with a helpful idea, but she was uncharacteristically silent.

She wasn’t gone, I could still feel her presence, but she seemed distant. No, it was more than that. I could feel waves of discomfort radiating from her. She was afraid of something.

Realising she wasn’t going to be any help, I focused my attention back to the problem at hand. Somehow, I had to get this giant machine back to Zoe, without breaking it. With her strength, I could probably lift it, but I couldn’t picture myself carrying it all the way across town, especially not without attracting attention.

“You need a truck,” a voice behind me said, startling me.

“What the-” I said, as I turned to see Charlie sitting on top of a pile of storage crates. She was dressed in her usual Vigilante getup, trenchcoat and all, but without the mask. It just reminded me that she’d gone public with her identity.

“Good thing I wasn’t trying to sneak up on you,” she said with an insufferable smirk. Rachel’s pained expression flashed through my mind, and I felt my body tense up.

“What are you doing here?” I asked coldly.

“Investigating,” she said, shrugging.

She dropped down from the top of the crates, landing gently and irritatingly elegantly. Her coat billowed around her.

“Investigating what?” I asked, taking an unconscious step away from her.

“This,” she said. “You. Whatever you’re up to.”

“What I’m up to is none of your business,” I snapped. She looked surprised, and a little hurt.

“There’s no need to be rude. I thought we were friends, Sabrina.”

I felt my legs buckle. I had suspected she knew about me, after her comment before she outed herself, but hearing it confirmed still frightened me.


“Yes, I know who you are,” she said impatiently. “You haven’t exactly been subtle about it.”


She rolled her eyes, striding towards me assertively. I shrank back, feeling more frightened than I would have expected. I was sure she wouldn’t hurt me, didn’t even want to hurt me, but the fear was almost paralytic.

“Relax,” she said, sounding almost annoyed. “I’m not your enemy. We both want the same thing, I think.”

“I don’t want what you want,” I very nearly hissed at her. She recoiled, confused. Then realisation spread across her face.

“You spoke to Rachel,” she said, her voice strangled.

Her expression, her tone, answered the question I was too afraid to ask. Was it true, what Rachel had said? Did Charlie really do that to her?

I knew the answer was yes.

“You’re a monster,” I growled, the transformation ready, but I held it at bay.

Charlie sighed, slumping against another storage crate.

“Well, there’s no denying that,” she said. “I was going to ask if she hates me, but I guess I know the answer already.”

The two of us stared at each other, the tension between us threatening to bubble over into violence. I could feel her fury washing over me like physical heatwaves.

“Tell her…” Charlie hesitated, and I almost believed the pained expression on her face. Almost. “Forget it. Tell Zoe something instead. Tell her I am going to send her back where she came from, but not before she suffers for every single person she’s infected.”

“Tell her yourself,” I snarled, as the transformation ripped through me. I felt my entire body shift and tear, and the world around me slowed down, grew calmer as a storm began to rage inside of me.

“Incredible,” Charlie said, not nearly as intimidated as I wanted. “How do you do that?”

“Looking for more powers to steal?” I accused, every inch of me ready for a fight. It was more than just adrenaline, it was a raw, primal need.

“I’m just looking to protect my city,” she said, more impatient than intimidated. “You know better than anyone what someone like Zoe can do, and to fight her, I needed what Rachel had.”

“And to hell with the consequences, right? Too bad if anyone gets hurt along the way?”

“There won’t be anyone left to get hurt if I don’t stop them, Sabrina!” she shouted, filled with frustration. “They are going to kill this city, and you know it won’t stop there.”

Before I could respond, a third voice filled the room, one I hadn’t heard before.

“Have you considered that we might actually leave willingly, if we had the option?”

A young woman- no, a teenager, barely older than we were, stepped out from behind the same crates Charlie was leaning against. She was dressed in loose-fitting, dark clothing, and moved with a lethal grace that set my nerves on edge all over again. Her short black hair fell about her face in a perfectly styled mess, an almost mischievous smirk playing on her lips. I found myself fixated on her eyes, shimmering violet and filled with presence and power.

“Ami,” Charlie said coldly.

“So nice to see you again, Charlotte,” Ami said tauntingly. “How are you feeling today?”

“Strong enough to crush your smug little skull,” Charlie threatened. “What are you doing here?”

“None of your business,” Ami said smoothly. “Now, unless you’re looking for a fight…” She trailed off, but the threat was blatant. Rage consumed Charlie’s face, and her eyes actually seemed to darken, but she turned on her heel, and began to storm off.

“You’re not invincible, Ami,” she cautioned. “I will figure you out eventually.”

“If only you still had the tinker on your side,” Ami called after her. Charlie froze, but said nothing. “You’re a child, Charlie, and you’re playing with fire.”

Charlie left in silence, leaving an awkward silence hanging in the room. Ami turned to me, all of her tension evaporating almost immediately.

“Now then. Sabrina, was it? I think it’s time that you and I got acquainted.”

Chapter 17 – This One Is Different

Zoe looked up, seeming neither surprised nor impressed to see Rachel behind me. Rachel couldn’t walk far, so I’d carried her pretty much the entire way. She still seemed a little unsteady on her feet.

“You brought a friend,” Zoe said, her tone strange, almost muted.

“I’m sorry,” I said, not sure how to justify myself to her. “I know you asked-“

“No, no,” she interrupted me, moving closer to Rachel. She sniffed the air, her expression curious and it seemed to me, worried. “This one is different.”

“Says you,” Rachel snapped.

“Mmm,” Zoe said, ignorning her. “You’re…” She suddenly shrank back, a look on her face that bordered on fright. “No, that’s impossible. No, not impossible. Improbable. How is not important. Where is she?”

“Gone,” Rachel replied, apparently able to follow Zoe’s erratic train of thought a lot better than I could. I was lost and confused.

Anger flashed across Zoe’s face, and she launched herself across the room with terrifying speed, slamming her hand into the wall beside Rachel’s head. Rachel didn’t even flinch.

“Where is she?” Zoe demanded, angry and desperate sounding.

“If I knew, I’d be talking to her, not you,” Rachel replied cooly. Zoe sneered, then pulled back, composing herself. A smile began to spread across her face.

“This place grows more interesting by the day,” she said, almost warmly.

“Can you do for me what she did?” Rachel asked, still unflinching.

“No,” Zoe said, shaking her head. “That was her role, not mine.”

“And what about Sabrina?” Rachel asked, looking at me. I turned my head away.

“I didn’t do that, and I can’t replicate it,” Zoe said.

The two of them stared at each other, a strange tension I didn’t understand spreading between them. They both struck me as people who enjoyed being the smartest ones in the room.

“So there’s nothing you can do for me?” Rachel asked, almost challenging her.

“I didn’t say that,” Zoe retorted, surprising me. “But why should I do anything?”

“Because I can help you,” Rachel countered easily.

“In your condition? I doubt that,” Zoe said derisively.

Rachel pulled out her tablet, tapping the screen determinedly. She flipped it over, showing Zoe a document full of photos and fragments of text.

“You’re building something,” she said. “You don’t have all the parts yet, but from what you have so far-“

“How do you know what I have so far?” Zoe interrupted.

“A lot of the items are very specific,” Rachel said. “People take note when they go missing. You’ve raided laboratories, hospitals, army depots…”

“Fine,” Zoe said, waving away the question. “And what is it you think I’m building?”

She seemed curious, intrigued by how much Rachel had managed to figure out already. Either that, or she was planning on killing her where she stood.

“No idea,” Rachel said.

“Then you’re wasting my time,” Zoe said, clearly disappointed.

“Fine. Find your own way home, then,” Rachel said. Zoe’s eyes flashed with irritation and surprise.

“Excuse me?”

“You’re trying to rip a hole to travel to another dimension,” Rachel said easily, as if it were an ordinary, casual thing to say.

Zoe snarled, approaching Rachel again with a dangerous, almost animalistic aura about her.

“How much did my sister tell you?”

“Nothing,” Rachel said, still showing no signs of being intimidated. “I figured it out alone.”

“Maybe you can help me,” Zoe conceded, grinning a wicked grin.

“But can you help me?” Rachel asked.

“I believe I can,” Zoe said. “Sabrina, I’m going to need a few extra items.”

I stared at her, mouth agape. She expected me to just jump on board with this? All I’d agreed to was helping her get home, nothing else.

Before I could tell her exactly that, a familiar voice chimed in, a voice that neither of them reacted to. Envy was back.

“I think you should help,” she said, materialising in the reflection of a pane of brushed metal. “There’s something else going on here, something different about Rachel. Better to keep her close, and stay on her good side, at least until we know more.” She smiled generously at me. “Of course, that’s just my advice. You don’t have to do anything I tell you.”

She disappeared as quickly and spontaneously as she’d arrived, leaving me feel slightly dizzy. Zoe and Rachel showed no indication that they’d noticed anything at all.

We all have our secrets, I guess, I told myself.

“Just tell me what you need,” I said.

Chapter 16 – You Were With Her

“My name is Rachel,” she said, her tone of voice suggesting that name should mean something to me.

“Is that supposed to mean something to- wait, like the one Charlie is looking for?” I asked, as the penny dropped.

“That’s me,” she said, her eyes dropping to the floor.

“What are you doing here?” I asked, an oversimplified version of the thousand questions I did want to ask her.

“I need your help,” she repeated.

“How do you even know who I am?” I demanded, feeling exposed and a little bit frightened.

“I saw you on TV,” she said. “You were with her.”


“I saw you. The way you move. You’re trying to hide it, but you’re… like her,” she said.

Panic and alarm raced through my mind. There was no way I was dealing with this, not after the day I’d had. She might have had her suspicions, but she didn’t know anything.

“You don’t know what you’re talking about,” I told her.

“Trust me, I do,” she said, her soft voice thick with pain. “I’ve seen more than my share of the supernatural. How do you think I ended up like this?”

“What?” I asked, taking another look at her. She was thin, unhealthily so, and trembling slightly. Her eyes were sunken and slightly bruised, her lips chapped and dry.

“Charlie did this to me,” she said, and I felt a lump form in my throat.

It didn’t seem possible. Whatever was wrong with her, it looked like illness, something eating her up from the inside. How could Charlie have done a thing like that? And even if she could, why would she?

“I… how?”

“You really want to know?” she asked, a flicker of a challenge in her deep brown eyes.

“No… but I need to,” I said. I couldn’t afford to turn down any information that could be useful, even if I couldn’t verify it.

Rachel sighed, taking a moment to gather her clearly limited energy.

“Earlier this year, Charlie disappeared. You might know about that. She was, she was everything to me. I had to find her.” Her eyes were wet, her breathing ragged. “I found somebody. She was powerful, like Charlie is now. She gave me some of that power, so that I could save Charlie. And Charlie ripped it out of me.”

I thought back to the questions I had before, remembering how the Vigilante, which I now knew was Charlie, hadn’t been known for superhuman strength or speed until after Impact Day.

“So that’s how Charlie-“

“Yes,” Rachel said. “And it’s why I’m like this now.”

“Who was the woman?” I asked.

“Doesn’t matter,” Rachel said coldly. “She’s gone now.”

The two of us stared at each other, an uncomfortable silence filling the air. I didn’t know if I could trust her, if I could believe everything she was saying, but I also didn’t have any reason not to.

I didn’t even know what her motivations were. If I was going to pick apart any possible lies, I needed to know what she was hoping to achieve.

“So what do you want from me?” I asked, hoping it didn’t come across as bluntly as it sounded.

“How did you get your powers?”

“Powers? Look, even if I did know what you were talking about-“

“Sabrina, please,” she said, stunning me. “Look at me.”

“How do you know my name?” I demanded.

“Look at me,” she repeated. “Knowledge is all I have.”

Everything about her felt wrong. She knew too much, arrived too quickly, expected me to trust her with nothing to back it up.

“I’m sorry, I can’t help you. Nobody did this to me, it just happened.”

That wasn’t even a lie. Whatever had happened to me, it wasn’t something that anybody did, at least as far as I knew. I couldn’t help her even if I wanted to, which I didn’t.

“There’s somebody who can help me, though,” she said, refusing to be discouraged. “The blonde woman. I know you were with her.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” I insisted.

Rachel rolled her eyes, then winced at the pain it caused. I watched as she reached into her bag, pulling out a tablet. She tapped the screen a few times, then flipped it over to show it to me.

“CCTV footage. She picked you up and carried you away.”

It was that night. Impact Day. I watched myself run into the burning building, looking for survivors. I tripped, stumbled on something, before finding Zoe. Her blood was everywhere. I reached out to her. She twitched. There was a blinding flash, then I was unconscious. Zoe pulled herself off of the pipe she was impaled on, and the wound healed almost instantly. She picked me up, and just like Rachel had said, she carried me away.]

“Where did you-“

“I deleted it from their server,” she assured me. “I have the only copies. Please, I just want to talk to her.”

“Why? Why do you think she can help you?”

“I don’t know if she can help me, but I can’t think of anyone else,” she said. “I’m desperate. And Charlie is looking for me. If I don’t figure something out soon…”

I sighed and threw my hands up, defeated. I still wasn’t sure if I could trust her, but if anyone could handle herself, it was Zoe. She could decide for herself whether to believe Rachel, and whether or not she would help her.

“Okay. I’ll take you to her. But she’s not going to like it.”