07 - The Architect

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He'd known this was going to be a difficult one, but he hadn't been expecting the Stranger to just... sit.

He was looking at the world, at freedom.

At least, that's what the Voice assumed he was looking at. What else was there to see?

"That, my friend, is our salvation. Just three more Jailers, and we'll be free!"

The Stranger hadn't pepped up.

"How about this: I'll tell you a little about the surface, the freedom we're fighting to take."

The Stranger didn't react.

"The grass down there is green. *Real* green. Not like the stuff they've got up here. And the water down there actually flows! The wind blows!"

The Stranger was still catatonic.

"What if I tell you a little about me, hm? Think that'll get you ready to go?"

This really wasn't good. The Voice *needed* him.

"I used to live down there. Right below this prison, if you can believe it."

He sighed.

"I still remember how the sea breeze felt..."

The Stranger frowned. Time to change topics.

"I wanted to be a singer, if you can believe it! Sure, I went through architectural school, and got some damn good grades, but my real passion was always jazz. Can you imagine? Me! Singing jazz! Of course, this was all before- Oh."

Oh. *That* was what the Stranger was thinking about.

He wasn't looking at the future, he was looking at the scars in the world.

An uncomfortable silence filled the room.

"I don't blame you."

The Stranger looked at the Voice, confused.

"Really, I don't. I'm sure you had your reasons. And even if you didn't? It's in the past. What matters now is what you choose to do next."

A look of realisation began to grow on the Stranger's face.

"What, did you think I just freed you for nothing? You and I both know we couldn't do this alone. I know you'll do the right thing when it counts."

The Voice re-opened the exit gate.

"Now, are you just going to sit there and rot, or are we gonna make this right?"

The Stranger took to his feet. It was time to go.