I couldn’t believe the scene that had unfolded before my eyes. I glanced from Ezra, to Lily, to their accomplice, to the Commissioner, to the Cabinet. I felt an odd mix of grief and relief.
No one said anything at first.
“Well,” Second began suavely, unhanding his side of me and letting Fourth take his spot, and sauntering to the front of the group, “it hasn’t been rendered yet, but it looks like I’m charge now.”
“Oh no,” the scruffy accomplice hissed. “You’d be worse than even he was.”
“And how would you know?” the Unofficial Commissioner sneered. The scruffy one took off his battered hat.
“Oh, I know, Roger,” he replied evenly.
“So you would, Paul. So you would.” He shook his head. They began circling each other, glaring.
"I wonder what Mother would think, seeing us like this," Second mused darkly.
"Frankly I don't think she'd be surprised."
"You were always the outrageous rebel..."
"... and you the ruthless autocrat. Funny how times don't change that much.
Second's eyes narrowed. “If you knew what was good for you & your little friends,” he hissed dangerously, “you’d get out of here while you can. We'll give you a head start. But I can assure you, if we catch up to you, I’ll be sure not to make the same mistakes twice.” He shot a glance at me.
“Y’mean like this?”
The room was engulfed in smoke.
In the chaos the untied gag fell to the floor as Fourth let go of my arms and allowed gravity to take over.
By the time the smoke had cleared, the three were gone.