The lights in the control centre flashed impassively as the commander turned away from Lily. From where I was standing I could see that she was still alive but the fire from his hands had taken half her face away. She had uttered no cry throughout the whole pointless process – the angeli weren’t after any information; it was cruelty pure and simple.
‘You did well,’ he said, turning to me. ‘We were worried for a little while whose side you were on.’
‘And the bargain?’ I asked. ‘My parents?’
But I could see the answer in his eyes. Behind him Lily slowly raised her hand.
‘Save your breath,’ I said. ‘I’d figured as much.’
Tossing Lily’s gun back to her, I turned mine on him and watched a surprised expression freeze on his face. I caught him as he fell and slammed his hand down on the identification panel, punching in the access codes as I did so. As Lily despatched the rest of the guards, a reassuring rumble indicated that the missile had been launched.
‘Well done,’ she said, her face already beginning to heal over. ‘The Sun now?’
I nodded and we blasted our way through the roof.