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Elizabeth didn’t have an exact count on how many people from the Family were with Grace, but she believed Grace wouldn’t let harm come to them. Even if they didn’t agree to the truce, she’d keep the peace. Elizabeth had to believe that.
“I have considered your offer, but I actually come here with one of my own.” She holstered her weapon, hearing Diane doing the very same behind her. If anyone recognized her in connection to Ryan, they didn’t mention it.
“We’ve made a truce with Ryan,” she started frankly, hoping that honesty would earn her some leniency. Elizabeth saw anger come to Grace quickly, spreading to the Family with her like wildfire.
“A truce with that monster! Like he cares what happens to the good people of Rapture,” she scoffed. “Throw your lot in with him if you like, but we–”
“Grace, please hear me out before you decide. I implore you,” Elizabeth begged, trying to pull this back from the brink. She only had this one chance. “This is our opportunity to bring peace to Rapture for everyone.”
Grace shook her head, scowl unwavering. “Peace? That animal doesn’t want any peace.” Muttering agreement rippled through the group beyond her. “How can you tell me about peace with Ryan when he holds Dr. Lamb, the one who really cares about us little people?”
“We’ll talk to him about Dr. Lamb,” Diane interjected, stepping up to stand beside Elizabeth. “It’s the only right thing to do.”
It was a tall order, but they had to try it. And the fact that Diane came forward… Elizabeth couldn’t be happier. Her friend was finding the self-esteem to be brave when she had to be.
“You do that,” Grace bit back, but at least her expression had softened slightly. “But you hear this, and you remember it well: his answer is ours.”
“I understand,” Elizabeth nodded, taking the unspoken command to leave. Diane walked alongside her in silence until they were far enough from the Limbo Room for comfort when the radio she carried crackled to life.
“Zur Hölle fahren,” came the first distant words, and Elizabeth’s heart froze. Gunfire followed while Diane scrambled to get the radio where they could both speak into it.
“Tenenbaum! Can you hear me?” Elizabeth waited for what felt like ages in static.
“Yes, yes, I hear you,” she snapped back. “Scheisse.” More gunfire burst in the background. “Fontaine was watching us. With you both and Booker gone, he attacked.”
“Oh, oh no,” Diane worried, her brows furrowing. “What about the girls?”
“And Jack?” They only just opened up to one another, finally starting to date. She waited for him to ask, why did she do that? What if he was–
“We pushed him back. They’re safe, but not for long.” Static punctuated her sentence and it was all Elizabeth could do not to run off without a word.
“We’ll be there soon,” Elizabeth promised, rushing ahead as Diane hurried to keep up.
– – – Back at the clinic – – –
The first thing she heard was Jack biting back a scream, and Elizabeth couldn’t hold back anymore.
“Lizzie, wait,” Diane tried to shout, breathless, but with no luck in stopping her.
“Jack, where are you? Jack,” she called again, running through the second set of clinic doors to see him breathless, pale, and sweaty, leaning again a counter.
“H-here,” he forced out, wincing.
“Fontaine used a command, one I need Lot 192 to reverse,” Tenenbaum explained from her lab area. “Ryan hasn’t delivered, so we would have to go and get the supplies ourselves. But he can’t go anywhere.”
“I can–” Jack cut off in a horrid gasp, gripping the edge of the counter he was against. “I can go. I’ve had worse.”
“You aren’t convincing anyone, Jack,” Elizabeth said, tempted to be gentler but knowing she had to be honest first.
“I need the dose, or I’ll die waiting here for it. My heart is stopping every–” He cringed, eyes shut tight for a few seconds. “It’s stopping too often. I won’t make it unless I go too.”
What do you want to do, Elizabeth?
– – –
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