“Hope will never die. Not as long as you choose to have it.”
He finds his old comrade, looking at the giant piece of machine—neither unmoved nor anguished. He just stared there, as if silently trying to find answers from what cannot be solved. He took courage from his first step, as he slowly approached him—knowing that this talk might end into death of one of them.
“You’ve been standing there for too long,” Steven greets, but Reagent made not a reply. Afraid to lose the conversation, he adds, “You know Mirage won’t speak to you.”
“Why are you here?” Reagent asks coldly in monotone, without movement but his eyes now focused on his guest.
“Just like you. Wondering.” Steven answers, trying to cover his silent fear with the grin on his face. He lights a cigar that glowed in the room—the only light in the darkness of Mirage’s sanctuary.
Reagent grins at his answer, and Steven’s anxiety calms. “It is possible—like the good old days,” he thought, as he looked at his friend. In his heart he knew the anger is still buried there—but one last conversation—that’s all he is hoping for. Just one chance of forgiveness before Reagent settles him his death…
“He’s always been like that… keeping his emotions inside…” he thinks, as he looks at Reagent’s silence. “Never letting anyone in, even Syn. That is why he is often misunderstood.”
“You were thinking of her,” Steven says at last, crushing the cigar with his foot. “You were hoping she is still alive.”
“That is the only reason why there is so much data, and the new ownership is not accepted,” Reagent answers. “Other than that there is no possible answer.”
“Technical problems.” Declares Steven. “Mirage isn’t perfect—when we built it we knew there will be disorder in technicalities.”
“Hmm, so like you,” Reagent exclaims coldly, wearing a grin. “You were always the boss—the one who’s always right. Is that what you told the leaders?”
“I see. But,” Reagent turns to him, and Steven could see his seriousness through his deep blue eyes. “You do take my reason possible, right?”
That was all Reagent need, and he sighed heavily with ease. Steven still believed in him, just as he did when he designed the Mirage. Misunderstood though he was—there were still two people who believed in him, and for him that was enough.
“I am still going to kill you,” He notes, as he starts to walk away, for the answer was all he needed. Steven smiles, without regret,
“If you’ll kill me,” he calls out, to which made Reagent stopped. “Do it in the forest of Harpsha. I haven’t made a proper burial for Syn and I want to do it before I die.”
“However you want it.” Reagent replies, and walks away, leaving a satisfied Steven in the darkness of the sanctuary.
Syn looks out to the clear blue sky, hoping to find something there that will remind her of what is true. White clouds hovered around the sky; the sun’s shining rays were benevolent, touching her skin gently. Mirage stood, waiting for an answer, which she herself is complicated to give.
“Death doesn’t stop hope,” She finally declares, looking at her hands, which she knew, in reality, was decaying. “Sometimes, hope begins in death.”
“I don’t seem to understand… when humans lose their life, they lose their souls as well,” Mirage spoke blandly, “Where then, is hope there?”
Both of them watched as a child fall down from the swing, and his mother rushed to seem him. As the mother tenderly comforted her crying son, Syn smiled. “Death may bring end to life.” She started, “But the memory will linger on forever. The people who loved you, who believed in you—they will keep you in their hearts as long as they live. And as long as this flame is burning it will continue to pass on. That is why,” She faced Mirage and answered stoutly, “Hope will never die. Not as long as you choose to have it.”
“I see.” The maiden nods graciously, taking her point. “Perhaps these people have hopes as well, but confining them here will stop the flame. However, what they see outside will break them. What if they choose not to hope?”
“Neo-Gaia is formed to create a new earth—a new beginning—however as time passed its leaders became selfish and wicked; thinking of themselves without any concern for others. At the aftermath of war, the anarchy has left the world half destroyed, leaving the bountiful countries into disarray, the deprived nations into turmoil. Only a little was left—so small to be divided among nations. The covetous leaders took it and placed the people under sleep inside the Veil so that they could perform their roguish plan of overtaking the world without interruption. But the rebels were aware of their thoughts, small in number though they were, they plan to attack one day and put all the civilization’s sleep to an end.”
“Are you one of them? The rebels?”
Syn thought for a minute, as she and Mirage traveled through the Veil, walking past the amazingly built land fashioned from her mind. For three years she has spent her life traveling, and she has come upon these people whom she befriended with. They however, were unaware of her true identity.
“No,” she answers then, concluding her thought. “I fight for my belief, not theirs. However,” she comes to a halt. “We have the same purpose.”
“And that is to wake these people from their long sleep.” Mirage continues, to which made Syn smiled pathetically in agreement and strolled with her again.
“But I wonder how you’d do that.” Mirage says in her cold monotone. “You are my possessor, and you are inside the Veil. The alteration, unfortunately, is impossible.”
Syn stopped and thought, and then decided. “There is a way.”