Help Us How?

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The Little Sisters settled in, indifferent to these strangers now that they felt safe. Blocks and toy bears commanded their attention, and Tenenbaum would address Elizabeth and Booker.

She holstered her gun, although Booker still held his. Walking to the cabinet where she stored other goods, Tenenbaum began, “I am certain you expected I would have questions. How you know of me, the Little Sisters, and of course…” She hesitated, her hand on the cabinet door and her voice faltering for a moment. “The boy.”

She took out one of the better liquors she stole from Fontaine. “We can discuss this as adults, yes?”

“No, thank you,” Elizabeth replied firmly, leveling a stern gaze at Booker. Her face was young, delicate, and as easy to read as the bright posters of Fort Frolic.

“I’ll pass, thanks,” he agreed dryly.

“Suit yourselves,” she said, pouring a glass for herself and turning to Elizabeth. Clearly the innocent between them, she still held sway over the gunman. And she would have the answers. “So. How did you find us?”

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To Tenenbaum’s surprise, Elizabeth turned to the man, her eyebrows furrowing and her hands coming together to play with the metal stump of her little finger. She could be so authoritative and yet so unsure, it was a mystery.

“Go on, Elizabeth,” he encouraged her. Another surprise already… These two were less and more than what they seemed.

“We’re from another city, much like this one, called Columbia. A man there, Mr. Jeremiah Fink, had stolen some documents from Dr. Yi Suchong.”

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Tenenbaum scoffed. He’d always been blind to his flaws. She tried to help him see the error of their practices, but she had not realized he was so careless with his data. Ryan and Fontaine both would kill him if they knew he’d let that knowledge leak to the surface.

“That’s how we discovered everything. About Rapture, the Little Sisters, you, and Jack. We had to do… other research to find this place, and your plan to save these girls.” Elizabeth leaned against a desk, stopping her fiddling at last with what remained of her finger.

“And what is your plan? There are three of us against a city crawling with splicers and worse, and Ryan and Fontaine have plasmids, weapons, and men to protect them.” Tenenbaum paused for a drink. “I will not risk our lives on fools.”

“Good thing we’re not fools,” Booker answered, finally setting his gun to rest on another desk. “We’re not here to save Rapture or kill your tyrants. We’re here for the kids.”

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“For the Little Sisters, there is time, and I could use your help to save them sooner. But for the boy, you are too late.” Another drink, another regret. But perhaps… If they acted quickly… She put the glass down by the bottle, her finger resting against her bottom lip as she planned.

“Fontaine will fake his death in a matter of days, and Jack is most probably being smuggled to the surface now.”

“What?” Elizabeth stood from her lean, already on alert. “No, there has to be a way to stop them.”

Booker picked up his gun. “Just tell us where they’re taking him and we’ll do the rest.”

“The rest? You want my help, yes? You will need to be clearer than that.” She scowled at Booker, and he returned her expression. Tenenbaum had enough of men with guns thinking they could do as they pleased.

“We don’t have–”

“Booker! Please.” Elizabeth again, saving him from himself. He stopped, resting the gun over his shoulder as she continued. “We’ll bring Jack here, and you can undo what Suchong did. Then, together, we can all focus on the Little Sisters.” Elizabeth gestured to the little ones playing on the floor, her wide, sincere eyes locked on Tenenbaum. “They have time, Dr. Tenenbaum. He needs us now.”

 

– – –

What do you want to do, Tenenbaum?

Read the next chapter.

– – –

Suggestions from last chapter:

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