Love or Tradition

By Sara Hajduk

Romance / Drama

Chapter 22

I hear the sound of someone screaming and start running towards it. When I get there, I see Tobias on the ground with a pool of blood around him. "Tobias!" I scream, running towards him. However, something blocks my path from getting to him. I keep on trying to get to him but I'm not able to reach him. I hear birds cawing and look up, seeing a black cloud of crows swarming in the sky. The cloud of crows swarm down, fully covering Tobias. Through the blackness, I can see the crows pecking at Tobias' flesh and more blood pools out of his wounds. I bang my fists against the barrier holding me back but I can't break it. Tears stream down my face as I watch the horror before me but as I take a closer look at Tobias, I notice that his eyes are a lighter shade of blue than I remember. It is then I figure out what's going on and close my eyes, trying to get this horrible image out of my mind.


My eyes snap open, breathing heavily as tears form in my eyes, trying not to think of that horrible image. I hear a scream of frustration and turn to my side, seeing Jeanine with an angry look on her face. She marches over to me, glaring at me. "How?! How are you getting through these serums?! It's been almost a week and every serum I've put you under, you always manage to break through each and every one of them! What is your secret?!"

"I'll never tell you," I spit at Jeanine.

Jeanine continues to glare at me before leaving the room, slamming the door behind her. I let out a breath I've been holding in and think about what Marcus and Jeanine have done. Each of them has tried to put me under these serums to try and break me. However, I can always figure out by some little detail that they are not real and that is how I break through the sims. These serums are terrible for I have to watch as my family and Tobias get hurt and/or die. I know that they are not real but it feels so real that I almost believe them until I see something that isn't right. Most of the serums Jeanine and Marcus have tested on me are fear serums but the worst are the pain serums, for those feel like I'm being torn apart. They put me through these serums twice a day and my neck is starting to hurt with all of the injections I've been getting. I'm still tied down to the chair and I've been only getting water and a small biscuit to survive. I don't know if they are going to kill me or wait until the serums actually work to kill me. Either way, I'm not going down without a fight.

My thoughts start drifting to Tobias and my family. I don't know what is taking them so long but I just hope they find me soon. I know I can't keep fighting these serums but I have to in order to stay alive. I suddenly hear footsteps walking towards my cell and I know it is Marcus coming to torture me. Did I mention that Marcus likes to use me as his own sculpture? He would take a knife and draw symbols and designs on different parts of my body. The cuts aren't deep or anything but I've lost a lot of blood because of it.

The door opens and Marcus walks in, a smirk on his face. Instead of the usual knife, Marcus is holding a pair of scissors. "It seems like it's taking your fiancé a long time to get here," Marcus starts, walking closer to me. "I think I should give him a little present from you but what should I give him." Marcus stares at me for a while before a smirk appears on his face. "I think I know the perfect gift to give the prince." He gathers all of my hair in one hand then yanks it back painfully, making me yelp in pain. "Let's give you a new haircut, princess." I feel myself stiffen as Marcus brings the scissors closer to my head. Right before he can start cutting, the door to the cell opens abruptly.


FOUR'S POV

This week has gone by painfully slow, especially since we have not found Tris yet. I contacted Will and told him what had happened and he said he would get right on trying to find Tris' phone. However, wherever the captors are hiding Tris is a place that couldn't get a read on her phone. While Will was trying to decipher the phone problem, I had search parties go out and see if they could find Tris. We checked Marcus' house first, just in case he took her there, but no one was there. We searched that place from top to bottom but there was no sign of anyone living there. After that, we checked every possible place where Tris might be, checking all of the kingdoms and all of the abandoned buildings. Each and every one of those buildings we've checked came up with the same result: nothing. My nights without Tris are the worst for I have nightmares of all the possible things that could have happened to her. The worst are the ones where she had died and I couldn't do anything to prevent it. Those were also the nights I couldn't fall asleep after that; I couldn't get the image out of my mind. Zeke and the others have tried to reassure me that we will find her but I won't be all right until Tris is in my arms, where she is safe.


While walking through the palace halls, trying to clear my mind of everything that has happened this week, I see Zeke running towards me with a smile on his face. "Why are you so happy?" I ask when he has reached me.

Zeke catches his breath before answering, "Will thinks he has found Tris."

My eyes widen before taking off with Zeke towards the conference room, where all of the meetings are held. We walk into the room where Uriah, Marlene, Lynn and Shauna are the room and Will being shown on the big screen. "Tell me that you have found Tris and that you are not joking with me," I tell Will.

"Hey Four, and I'm certain that I've found Tris," Will answers.

"How did you find her?" Lynn asks. "When you first tried to find the phone, you said you couldn't."

"I know, but whoever has kidnapped Tris knows what they are doing. Wherever they are holding her must be a place where phones have no signal. Meaning that the phone can't receive signal in that room, making it impossible to contact that phone. I tried searching the phone by the battery but even that was impossible. Usually, if the phone is turned off, a person could still find the phone through its battery for it produces a signal. However, I wasn't able to find the signal through the battery. So in order to find Tris' phone, I had to find it the old fashion way by looking through her phone history to see who she has called or who called her. Four, you really helped by calling her the day she was kidnapped."

I raise my eyebrows in surprise. "Really? How?"

"I was able to decipher the signal of the phone to search the kingdoms to see where she is at."

All of us were lost by Will's explanation…that is, until Christina came on. "He means that he was able to find the signal produced by her phone when you called and then follow the signal until it disappeared." We nod our heads in understanding. "You can't speak nerd to them, Will; they won't understand."

Will just glares at her before turning back to us. "Anyway, when you called her that day, the signal was very strong so I locked in on that signal and followed it until it disappeared. I then figured that Tris was taken to a place where there would be no signal on her phone to try and locate her."

"So where did you find her?" Uriah almost yells.

"You might not believe this, but the signal stopped at Jeanine Matthews' place."

"The council member of Erudite?!" I exclaim.

"Why would Jeanine kidnap Tris?" Shauna wonders.

It was then I remember Tris telling me what her dad thought of Jeanine and how she wanted a better system for the society. "I can think of a few reasons," I mumble. "Zeke, I want you to contact the search party in Erudite and tell them to meet me by the train tracks." He nods then whips out his phone. "Uriah, go and grab three guns from the artillery room."

"Got it." He runs out of the room.

"Will-"

"Meet you by the train tracks?"

I nod.

"I'll contact the doctors and tell them to be ready for Tris," says Christina.

"Thanks."

She nods then the video cuts off.

"What do you want us to do?" Marlene asks.

"Contact Tris' family and tell them we have a lead on her whereabouts. If we find her, I'll contact you so you can bring them to Erudite."

"Got it." The girls leave the room just as Uriah comes back in with the guns. "I've talked to the search party and they said they'll be waiting for you to arrive," says Zeke.

"Good, let's go." We grab our guns then head towards Erudite.


Zeke, Uriah, and I jump off the train at Erudite, where Will and a group of Dauntless men are waiting for us. We then follow Will as he leads us to Jeanine Matthews' house. We don't have to worry about Jeanine for Will has the power to search her house for Tris since he is the prince. When we get to the house, I order my men to surround the house and wait for my signal to come out. Will and I walk towards the door while Zeke and Uriah press themselves against the walls by the door. Will casually knocks on the door and when no one answers, he knocks again and says, "This is Prince William of Erudite; open this door or else I will use force." That is when the door opens.

"Prince William and Prince Tobias," Jeanine starts, smiling sweetly at us. "What can I do for you?"

"In case you haven't heard, Princess Beatrice has gone missing and we have been searching all over the kingdoms to find her," Will explains. "We were wondering if you know anything about the princess' whereabouts."

"I'm sorry, but I haven't heard or seen anything."

"Really, then how come Tris' phone signal disappeared when it came to this house."

Jeanine's eyes widen slightly. "I…I don't know. Maybe you misread something and thought it stopped here."

"So it wouldn't bother you if we searched your house in case we were mistaken?"

"You can't!" Our eyes narrow at her outburst and she realizes that. "I mean my house is a mess and I wouldn't want the princes to see it."

"Don't worry, we won't mind." We try to walk into the house but she blocks our way. "Let me clean up the house first and then I'll let you search." I take out my gun and point it at her. "We won't ask you again." I can see Jeanine trying to figure out what to do before she reluctantly steps aside. I nod my head at Zeke and Uriah, who signals the men to start the search. Will and I enter the house with Zeke, Uriah, and two other men following me. I order the men to stay with Jeanine and make sure she doesn't go anywhere. Meanwhile, we continue to search the house from top to bottom but the results are coming up the same; we can't find anything. Just as I'm about to give up and leave, one of the men calls my attention. I walk over to him and he shows me a secret opening hidden under the floorboards. I glance at Jeanine, who is starting to pale, before climbing down the opening. Zeke, Uriah, and I follow the dim-lit pathway until it reaches a door at the end. As we get closer, I can hear a man's voice and we take out our guns, preparing ourselves for whatever is behind that door. I give Zeke and Uriah a nod before knocking the door open, pointing our guns at the figures in the room; specifically, Marcus and Tris.

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