...I glanced over at Archer.
Her eyes were red and swollen, and her hair was fluffed everywhere, like a chicken had been rooting around in it. “You don’t look so hot,” I commented, going closer. My legs ached but I tried to ignore it.
Archer looked up and glared daggers.
I raised my hands. “Just sayin’.” I knelt down by her. “Look...”
Well, this was going to take more moral fortitude than I had expected.
“Look. I’m sorry. I’ll try not to antagonize you anymore, despite the fact that’s my best method of stress relief so far.” I paused. “We need you in the game, Archer. You’re a manipulator just as much as I am. You need to help us.”
She looked at me steadily. Her eyes looked way colder than they should have.
“I want to go home,” she said.
Then she turned sideways and rested her head against the wall.
I scowled. “That’s a nice way to try to get there.”
She didn’t react.
“Fine, be a baby.”
Something clicked outside the cell. Archer jerked upright, her eyes going wide and white. “What’s that?” she hissed under her breath.
The three of us were still for a few seconds. I relaxed and shook my head. “Just something...”
“What if they come back and want me?” Archer whispered, clutching at her hair. “I can’t do that – I can’t take that! I don’t know what to do. I can’t be tortured. I – there’s just no way—“
“Archer!” I grabbed her shoulders, and she jerked her head up, focusing her wide eyes on me. “Chill. out. You have to keep it together. No going crazy – all right?”
She didn’t respond at first. The intensity of the fear in her eyes was... scary.
“Archer.” I gave her a little shake. “Keep. It. Together.”
She gave a little nod and gulped again.
Dunno, just really liked that part. Which probably means it's hideous. Oh well. There it is.