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They were all prepared. The children were up in bed, sound asleep. The Prohibited knew what they were to do. Violet was going to create a portal into every facility’s document room and begin handing the Prohibited documents. She would do this until she was spotted, and she would go on to the next facility. She did not want any of them to have much time to alert the others.

Whatever documents she was able to retrieve was better than what they had now. Violet was calm and peaceful. She had spent much of the day within the realm, and she was very centered. She knew the risk was not significant, like in a rescue situation. This was not human collateral. So, she was at peace. Everyone around her, on the other hand, felt extreme hesitation. They were not used to covert operations or rescues. At least most of them weren’t. This was a little nerve-wracking for most. But Violet had made it known that they were not in any danger. She would not put them in this position if they were.

Basically, Violet would go into the portal and begin handing them papers. It was as simple as that. Everyone was to remain as quiet as possible so that the children would not wake up. That was easy enough. Violet hugged everyone and reassured them that she wouldn’t be gone too long. Violet stood in the large living room and opened the portal. The Prohibited that could see inside it were amazed as they saw into a room with filing cabinets. Violet walked through, and with a wave of her hand, the drawers began to open. They observed Violet removing stacks of papers and files and returning to the portal to hand them through. So far, so good.

Violet continued to do this as the Prohibited began to make stacks of papers and files on the kitchen floor. They tried to make sure the piles were placed in the order and drawers that they came from. Caroline put Post-it notes on top of each stack showing drawer one, drawer two, and so on. Things were going smoothly. Violet hadn’t realized the number of filing cabinets that were in the room. She tried to hurry without dropping any of the papers. This was going to take some time, longer than she had thought. She remained calm and focused as she took stack after stack and placed it in Prohibited hands.

This first documentation room took over an hour to get all the documents. She hadn’t been seen, but she wasn’t comfortable with the amount of time it was taking. With the wave of her hand, she gently closed all the file drawers. She reentered the portal into the living room, where everyone excitedly stood. She closed the portal and walked into the kitchen to see the floor already covered with heaps of paper.

“We have four more rooms to go. Do you think you can find the room?” Violet asked the room of Prohibited. The answer was a resounding, yes. Violet nodded her head in agreement and waved her hand to reopen the portal. She walked into another facility’s document room and began the same process of handing back stacks of papers. She was relieved to find that this room was not as big as the last room.

She continued the same actions as before. Grabbing a stack and handing a stack. She watched as the Prohibited had formed a line down to the lower level to allow for more stacks. She smiled at the Prohibited selfless family she loved so much worked quickly. She had emptied this room in forty-two minutes. She reentered the home and closed the portal. She maneuvered through the kitchen for a glass of water. Everyone took a seat while Violet took a break to observe all of their hard work. She finished her water and walked back into the living room with its empty floor. She was hoping they could leave this room empty.

“Is everyone ready? We’re halfway there.” Violet asked cheerfully.

Again, a resounding yes as everyone got to their feet. Violet opened the portal again to reveal another larger document room. “This one’s a big one, guys. Sorry.” She apologized and entered the room. She began the boring and exhausting process. By now, her arms were feeling the weight of the loads of papers. But she continued at a quick pace. She had gotten to the third filing cabinet when she noticed a small movement at the door. It was the handle being opened. She immediately melted the handle, so it could not be opened. She saw through the windows that a man with a white coat was peering through. She knew she didn’t have much time.

The man disappeared, and instantly, alarms and lights began going off. The Prohibited saw this and begged Violet to come back. She refused and continued to grab stacks and hurl them into the portal. Suddenly there was banging at the windows and door. Violet saw men with guns begin to aim. She sent out a wave of protection, which deflected the bullets as they left the guns. She began waving her hands at the filing cabinets. Filing cabinet drawers sprung open, and Violet began to wave her hands frantically as pages flew out of the cabinets and into the living room. Prohibited began to grab at papers on the floor and through the air as stacks of papers filled the living room. It was utter chaos.

Suddenly the glass was broken, and bullets flew through the air. Violet sent out another wave of protection and turned back to the filing cabinets. She was determined and as stubborn as Gabriel. She began to levitate the remaining filing cabinets. She warned the Prohibited to take cover for safety as she began to fling one filing cabinet after another into the living room. Prohibited screamed as they took cover while the projectiles landed on the couches and floors, hitting into walls and bouncing off them.

Violet sent out another wave of Protection as the men made their way into the room. Violet threw the final filing cabinet into the portal as she ran through behind it. The men attempted to reach her as she closed the portal. Violet was excited, and her adrenalin superseded her calmness. She began jumping up and down as she yelled that they had done it. Her excitement hadn’t allowed her to see the frightened Prohibited hiding in all parts of the house. Once Violet realized this, she shamefully calmed down.

“It’s alright, everyone. You don’t have to be afraid. The portal’s closed.” Violet said with confidence. “It’s okay. I promise.”

Prohibited began to appear from all corners of the house slowly. Violet’s smiled lessened as she noticed the fear and trepidation that the Prohibited were expressing. That’s when Violet began to realize the damage she had done to the home and her family.

“Oh my gosh. I’m so sorry, everyone. Is everyone okay?” Violet asked. “I didn’t realize how bad it was in here.” Violet scanned the living room, which was thoroughly destroyed. The couch was broken almost in half, with two filing cabinets lying on top. The walls had holes everywhere, and a filing cabinet had come to rest where the railing on the stairs had once been.

The floors were covered in dented filing cabinets and papers everywhere. Violet was deeply ashamed of herself. She had promised them that they would be safe, and yet she was so focused on getting as many documents as she could, she had put them all in harm’s way. “I am so so sorry.” She began walking up to each Prohibited to check to make sure they weren’t hurt, at least physically. No one had been injured.

Violet was so concerned about making amends with them that she had forgotten that they had one more document room left. She saw upon all their faces that this was no longer an option. She was torn. She had a strong desire to tell them all to pull themselves together and at least attempt to get what they could. But she also had a strong desire to not put them through any more. She was facing an internal war. Delilah approach Violet. She could tell she was struggling.

“Violet, you can’t go back in. It’s too dangerous for everyone. Besides, we have enough here. This should be more than enough to answer our questions.” Delilah placed her hands on Violet’s shoulders. She could tell Violet was somewhere other than here. “Violet, I need you to focus.” Delilah searched for recognition in Violet’s eyes.

“But we only have one more. Just think of all the information we might be losing!” Violet said sternly.

Delilah pulled Violet’s face to focus on hers. “But think of all the information we’ve gained. You cannot focus on what we don’t have now. We’re all safe and uninjured. You can’t ask them to do this again.” Delilah was adamant.

“But I have to.” Violet snapped. Before Delilah could stop her, Violet stepped around filing cabinets and found a space she could create the portal. All Prohibited hid behind walls and under furniture. Violet waved her hand to open the portal. Images instantly appeared of men with guns. Violet recognize that they had been warned.

She immediately began to shut the portal when one of the men aimed and fired through it just as it shut. Violet turned to hit the ground, barely missing the fast-moving bullet. In that split second, all Prohibited hit the floor, and screams could be heard throughout the house. The portal was now closed, and Violet pushed herself up to see if she had been hit. She hadn’t. Violet was in such a hurry to close the portal, she hadn’t had time to send out a wave of protection. No other Prohibited were near the portal to recognize the danger, but they had heard the gunshot. Violet slowly stood up and looked around as Prohibited began peeking around corners and began standing up.

“Is everyone okay?” Violet yelled out. “Is anyone hurt?”

The Prohibited were coming out of rooms as more and more reassured her that they were alright. Prohibited began to take stock of who was all there. Prohibited were coming up from the lower level to be accounted for. Violet scanned their faces. She betrayed them, and it showed. Violet looked over at Delilah, whose face only expressed disappointment. Violet pleaded with her mother’s eyes to not be sad or betrayed, but Delilah could not give her what she was seeking.

They all continued to count the Prohibited to make sure everyone was present. It appeared that everyone was. Delilah continued to check the Prohibited to make sure there were no unknown injuries. There were not. Violet stood looking at her family as they avoided eye contact with her. They did not feel safe anymore.

Just then, a small gurgle cried out from behind the filing cabinet that was wedge onto the stairs. Then they heard a slight groan. Everyone froze but Delilah. She raced to the stairs and climbed them, stepping on papers and broken stair rails as she made her way to the filing cabinet. She knelt and saw a Prohibited squeezed between the stair and the cabinet. Only moans could be heard. Delilah turned over the Prohibited. It was Caroline. She was bleeding from just below her left shoulder. Delilah immediately put pressure on the wound.

“Call Dr. Marsh now!” Delilah screamed through the air. Prohibited began to grab their phones as multiple people tried making contact. Dr. Marsh was notified of the shooting. He would contact a Prohibited hospital and have them send an ambulance. He didn’t want to risk her needing surgery or lifesaving machines. “Caroline, honey, I’m right here. You’re going to be fine. Can you hear me?” Delilah begged for a response.

Caroline tried desperately to open her golden eyes and focus on Delilah, but it was difficult. Caroline was able to mouth the word okay.

“Caroline, I need you to stay with me, sweetheart. An ambulance and Dr. Marsh are on their way. Just stay with me.” Delilah begged as she continued placing pressure on her wound. One of the prohibited brought Delilah a folded towel. Delilah put the towel on the wound and pushed as hard as she could. All Caroline could do was groan and whimper through the pain. Violet did not move.

She watched as Delilah’s head bobbed up and down above the filing cabinet as she spoke to Caroline and then forced all her weight onto the wound. Violet could not move. She could not speak. The entire house was in a panic, and she could do nothing. She had done enough already. Her unwise choices had consequences, and Caroline was paying Violet’s dues. Violet continued to watch the top of Delilah’s head and face as she tried saving Caroline’s life. While she was watching, she noticed movement through the upstairs railing. She looked up to see Gabriel and Annabelle with fear on their faces as they tightened their grips on the posts. They had seen what happened. It could have been one of them. It could have been any of them. But it was Caroline.

Violet watched Gabriel and Annabelle as they looked down at Delilah and Caroline. This was not the night that she had planned. She caused this and no one else. It wasn’t just bad decision making. It was selfish desires and lack of impulse control. She couldn’t help Caroline. She couldn’t help Delilah. She couldn’t help any of them. In her mind, she was no better than Xavier at this moment. So, she disappeared in an instant.

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