Four DaysMature

Falcon can't sleep. No matter how hard he tries, Eternal's words continue to haunt him. One of them could already be dead, that was enough to hurt, but what really tortured him was the thought of who could already be gone. His thoughts turn to the young girl he knows to be sick. What if that young girl was Mary? But if it's not her, it could be any of the others. His mind runs through their names and faces; Catherine, Bria, Rowan, Luke, Dane and the half a dozen others he's come to know and love over the years. He couldn't stand the thought of being too late for any of them.

Even when sleep finally does take him, his dreams only add to his stress. He dreams of the wall and hourglass again, the red sand growing ever lower in the glass. The screams from behind the wall are louder than ever; some of terror and - to Falcon's horror - several more of pain. He tries to call to them, but his voice is lost in a gale that blows up from nowhere. Suddenly a voice rings out through the dreamscape, dark and full of evil:

"Four days!" it booms, "Four days until the sands run out!"

With a cry or horror, Falcon jolts awake. It's nearly dawn and pale slivers of light are beginning to trickle in through the trees. He's coated in sweat and as pale as a ghost, the words still ringing in his ears. Four days. Four days until they died. All of them. One might already have succumbed - he tries to hang onto the hope it's only a "maybe" - but he can't run the risk of losing any more.They've got to get that Stone. Fast. But first, he has to ask Eternal something. When she wakes up, he tells himself, he will ask her.

Who does she think is already gone?

The End

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