When the lights went out again, Jaxi was resting. She lay with her hands clasped on her stomach and her eyes lightly closed but her ears open, listening to nothing. Suddenly the glow from behind her eyelids disappeared and she slowly sat up, looking into the darkness.
Footsteps approached her cell and she turned toward the door, expectant. As it slid open, Nichos was framed in the red of emergency lighting, his figure in a strangely defensive and tense posture.
“Nichos,” she said.
He beckoned her out and closed the door behind her, pressing a lightsaber into her hand. Leaning close, his breath tickling her ear, he whispered, “We’ll get into the vents.”
Jaxi glanced up and saw a heavy metal grate. She ignited the lightsaber, the yellow glow lighting up her face, and reached up, but the ceiling was too tall. “Boost me,” she hissed.
Nichos knelt and she climbed onto his shoulders, balancing with the help of the Force, as he stood, raising her to twice her height. This time it was easy, and she was soon able to lift the melted circle and push it into the vent. Then she turned off the lightsaber, jumped up, and turned to help Nichos.
He jumped and she caught his arm and pulled him up. Grasping the metal grate, he replaced it and followed her, crouching uncomfortably, down the vent.
Suddenly sirens began to wail. Jaxi’s eyes narrowed. “How long?”
They reached a turn before Nichos answered. “Ten minutes at most.”
Jaxi closed her eyes, trying to orient herself. “Which way?”
Nichos pointed. “Left, then we reach a place where we can get into the cave system.”
“This seems too easy,” Jaxi muttered.
“Not for long, trust me.”
The vents widened and they could crouch-walk in the darkness now, but they reached a dead end. Jaxi found it with her head. She hissed in pain and muttered a couple choice words as Nichos reached around her, felt the wall, and peered up. “Up.”
Jaxi began to climb.
About halfway up a wall of metal slammed across the tunnel, barely missing Jaxi’s hand. “Watch out!” she cried, and glanced back down. All she saw was another barrier.
There was a moment of panic, then she told herself to get a grip and pulled out the lightsaber. Melting out a circle took a while, but when she had she saw Nichos waiting patiently below her. “We have a lot of cutting to do.”
Sweat ran down the back of Jaxi’s shirt when they emerged into the caves. It had been hours and her hair was escaping from her ponytail and she was covered with grime. Nichos wasn’t much better, and when they struggled out, Jaxi flopped in an undignified heap on the ground, gasping for breath.
Nichos rolled over onto his back. “Rest… just for a minute, then we… have to go.”
Jaxi closed her eyes. “I hate this place. So, so much.”
Nichos patted her arm. “Well, I’m getting you out.”
She glanced over at him, rolling her head on the ground. “Hurry up.”
Groaning, he rose and stumbled, then regained his balance. “This way.”
Pulling her knees up under her, Jaxi rose and swayed, then steadied herself and looked around. “Lead the way.”
And now that we all now this is Ryndi it's super weird, right?