Chapter 10: Bring the Fire

Hatter and Charlie ride through the night as fast as they can push the horses without letting them pull up lame.  Hatter is like a man possessed, trying to figure out a way to get Alice back. His thoughts fly all over the place trying to put a plan together that will have them get Alice out safely.  ‘Hatter keep it together… This isn’t helping Alice!’

He tries to focus and think over what he knows.  He has been in the Heart’s Casino a couple of times because of the Tea Shoppe.  He knows it is hard to get in and it will be even harder to find Alice inside.  But, he has a feeling that he needs to hurry.  He can’t explain it but he feels that he can’t waste any time, or everything will end badly.   He has already found that he doesn’t care about anything, but getting Alice back.

When they get close to the Casino, Hatter tries again to see if Charlie still wants to go through with helping him rescue Alice.  He won’t mind if Charlie doesn’t want to go into the Casino, since there is a slim chance that they will all get out alive. “Charlie, are you sure you want to go through with this?”

Charlie looks at the man beside him, and is shocked that the skin around his eyes is, well, darker. “Y…yes, Harbinger.  I have sworn to protect Alice.  Besides, you need me.”  As he watches Hatter’s skin becomes more normal.  It reminds him of stories he has heard…

Unable to prevent it, Hatter smiles to himself.  The old Knight may not be much, but he is very loyal to Alice.  He looks down from the hill to the back door that a friend who had dated an electrician, had told him about, and decides that they should leave the horses here. He asks, “Charlie, if we don’t get out, will the horses be alright?”

“Of course.  They are special horses.  You know, not every horse can be a steed of a Knight!” Charlie answers him as if he can’t believe that Hatter has asks him.

Hatter shakes his head.  ‘Only Charlie…’

Hatter informs Charlie, “Okay, here is the plan.  Just follow me and don’t say anything.  I will try to talk our way into the casino.  The less fuss we make, the longer we can search for Alice without anyone being aware.”  Hatter is making plans frantically his head.  This is what he is talented at, he has always thought best on his feet.  Well normally… when it doesn’t concern Alice. For some reason his plans haven’t been working too well.  ‘Hatter, me boyo, keep it together!!  Alice needs you!’ That is all it takes for him to focus.

Hatter tells Charlie, “Charlie, follow me… and keep quiet!”  Hatter knows the Knight can’t lie, and it will take some fast talking to get them in without an alarm being raised. They walk down the hill to the back door and knock.

 A suit answers.

Hatter smiles at him as he greets him, “Hi.”  He is praying this will work.  He keeps getting an uneasy feeling about Alice.  He can’t explain it, but he feels she needs him and the strength of the feeling frightens him.   ‘How bad can it be if Wonderland is pushing him this hard?’

The suit looks at Hatter and demands, “Who the hell are you?”

 Well either the suit is dumb, or he takes his job way too seriously. Hatter tries to keep a pleasant face on, when he really wants to punch him, and get in to save his Alice.   He can feel the time slipping away from them. But, he knows that it will set off alarms, and tries to keep calm.  He thinks of his plan and tells the suit, “We’re the new act, Robinson and…Duckworth.”  He indicates Charlie, “He’s Robinson.  I’m Duckworth.”  He drops his voice slightly, “We’re guardians to the mesmeric portals of the cosmos.”

The suit looks blankly at him, “Huh?”

Great, he’s dumb. This either will be easy or really hard.  The feeling intensifies of Alice needing him.  Hatter works to keep the emotions off his face. ‘Hatter, you need to do what you do best.  Talk the man into the plan!’

Hatter clarifies for him, “Stage Hypnotists.”  Hatter hears Charlie chuckle behind him and say “This is good fun.”  He glances back, hoping that Charlie will understand his glance to mean to shush. He looks back at the suit and notices that the suit is looking even more suspicious.   He tries to cover, “He means the act.”

Thinking quickly Hatter takes his hat off, and flips it around him as he continues to talk, “its good fun when we do it.”

Hatter then remembers the trick that had Alice floored in the pit and tries that as a last resort.  He tosses his hat straight up in the air. Both Charlie and the suit watch it go up flipping all the way and then come back down and land on his head.  He tips it to the side.

The suit looks at him then turning around, he asks behind him, “You got clearance for stage hypnotists?”  The suit frowns as he notices his partner must have walked off again.

Hatter glowers, this isn’t working, and he is feeling more and more anxious to get to Alice.  Then Hatter notices that the suit is alone and decides to give his anxiety a relief of a sort.  He brings his right hand up and gets it ready.  Then he whistles to gain the attention of the suit.  When the suit turns around, he hits him with his Sledgehammer.

The suit goes down without a sound. Hatter steps in straightening his hat to its normal place and then grabs the suit.

Charlie is staring at him. Clearing his throat he asks, “What happened to talking our way in?”

“He wasn’t appreciative enough of the trick.” Hatter flippantly tells him as he ties the suit up to make sure he won’t be able to raise the alarm when he wakes up.  Then Hatter looks at him closer and realizes that he may have hit him harder than he expected.  It looks like the guy wasn’t going to be waking any time soon.

Hatter hears Charlie clear his throat again as he quietly advises him, “I thought it is a great trick!”

Huh? What is he talking about? Oh!  Hatter chuckles mirthlessly, and tells Charlie, “Charlie, I was joking.  C’mon.  Once we get on the main floor, we shouldn’t have any problems.”  Charlie follows him down the hall and through some doors.

Hatter keeps feeling like Wonderland is telling him he has to hurry.  He moves as quickly as he can without making it obvious.  They walk through the doors to one of the main hallways; he tries to figure out where they are in the building.  As Hatter is looking around, some pretty Diamonds walk past him staring, and he automatically tips his hat, “Ladies…” They giggle and move on.  Some suits come following them and ignore him.  Hatter sighs, glad to have followed his instincts; no man would normally ignore a pair of attractive woman in such little clothes.

He turns back to see Charlie looking around amazed.  How long has it been since the Knight has been in an actual building? Hatter sees some more suits walking by and hurries up to Charlie.  They got to get moving, this place is huge and they are running out of time.

Hatter tells Charlie, “Well we’re in, but we don’t have much time. We should split up and search intermediate floors.” He walks past, hoping that Charlie will follow without making a scene.  He has a feeling she is higher than they are but, he is getting impatient.  ‘If you are going to help, can you please do it in a more obvious way, please?’  He doesn’t care if he is going bonkers, he will use anything and everything to find Alice.

Charlie’s question however, stops him in his tracks, “Why?”

Hatter can’t believe him.  Why is he wasting time?  Can’t he see how big this place is? Hatter can’t hide the disbelief in his voice as he tells Charlie, “Why? Because we don’t know where she is.”

Charlie walks up, realizing this is why he had been told he has to come.  He can find Just Alice! “I shall reach into the mist to lift the heavy veil that shrouds the oracle.”

Hatter can’t believe it!  What is he doing???

 “Aaaawwwwwww” Charlie gets off track for a second looking at a particularly pretty Diamond walking by and is prodded to get back on track, “Galadoon de Booshe!”

Hatter has to get him to stop.  He is calling attention to them!  He walks back to Charlie and asks him, “What are you doing?”

All of a sudden Hatter can feel Wonderland pressuring him to listen to Charlie as he starts to tell him rapidly some directions, “Down here! Take the second left at the stairs that lead up to the third floor, the after the double doors take the third walkway on the right, over the fitness center to Reception B, ask for Sheila!”

Hatter stares at Charlie.  ‘Well, you asked for some direct help didn’t you?’  He asks Charlie in shock, “Sheila?”

Charlie looks confused for a second. “Maybe it’s Shakena.”  Then his face clears up, and he starts to follow his directions telling Hatter, “Come on.”

Hatter and Charlie make their way through the casino following Charlie’s instructions.  Or are they Wonderland’s instructions?  Hatter decides that he doesn’t care as long as they get to Alice in time.  He is worried about why he is being so pressured by time.  He keeps feeling like Alice needs him more and more, and the feeling is making the dread in his heart get worse. What can be happening to her?

They get to the reception desk and asks the receptionist, whom Hatter is bemused to find out her name is Sheila, for where the girl in a blue dress had been taken.

Shockingly, she answers them in a bored voice, “She’s in the Truth Room with the Doctors.”

Hatter thinks quickly, and tells her, “We are here to take her down to the casino floor when they are done with her.  Can you tell me which door she is in so we can be waiting?”

 She looks at him, really seeing him for the first time, and he can see her looking him up, and down appreciatively.  She smiles, looking around first, and then crooking her finger at him, asking him to come closer.  Sheila then leans forward and tells him in a low sultry voice, “Well sweetie, she is on the third door on the right.  But after your shift, why don’t you lose the old man, and look me up?” She then winks at him.

He thinks quickly, pushing the disgust he feels away, and smiles back at her.  “I’ll be sure to do that.”  He turns; walking to the room she had indicated, and opens the doors, trusting that Charlie will be right behind him. He can’t do anything to set off any alarms before he can get to Alice.

Once they walk in, the door seals shut on them.  They look around in bewilderment.  It looks like they are in a house of some sort.  Hatter looking at the walls sees pictures of Alice growing up.  He wants to look closer at his Alice when she was younger, but his sense of urgency is too strong.  He sees some double doors and opens them, starting the search. Since this was the first and only set of doors he can find, he opens to quickly enter and search, only to find there is no floor! “Whoa” He catches himself on the doors in time not to fall in the hole. Looking up he sees Alice, MY Alice! standing on a sliver of a board, that is dissolving as he watches, and leaning most of her weight on a desk, writing.

Alice looks up to see who has spoken, wild hope in her heart with that voice, “Hatter!”  She has never felt such sweet relief in seeing him.  She had resigned herself to dying without ever seeing him again.  She will never doubt his feelings for her or his promise to come for her again.

They both are startled from their joy in seeing each other when Dr. Dee says harshly, “Who’s that? Go away, this is a private session!”

Hatter looks at the huge angry heads, recognizing them as the Doctors Dee and Dum. His hatred for them grows, realizing that they are the ones that have done this to Alice.  Dredged up her darkest fear of heights, and were using it to torture her into giving them the Stone of Wonderland. Getting any information out of her is only a secondary goal to them; this would all feed into their insane type of fun. People have been known to die from fright from the two of them.

 Hatter glances back at the board under Alice’s feet and realizes that they didn’t have much time.  He opens the doors wider.  He is going to have to ask her to do something that will take most of her muchness to accomplish, but there is no other way! “Jump!”

Dr. Dum yells, “Get rid of him.”

Alice stares at Hatter.  Does he realize what he is asking of her?  She looks at him and she can see that he is very aware of what he is asking.  ‘But!!  Alice, there is no way he can get to you.  Jump!!’  She hesitates, then trusting that Hatter will not let her fall, jumps on the desk, and uses that as a launch board to the hanging light.  Swinging over to Hatter she lets go… she feels him catch her and hold her tightly to him.  She clutches him just as tightly, relishing being in his arms again after all she has gone through.

Hatter can’t believe it.  She trusted him and jumped.  And because she did that, he has her in his arms again.  He holds on to her tightly.  He knows they have to get moving, they haven’t escaped yet. But, oh God, she’s safe in his arms. He crushes her to him once more, needing to feel her. Then Hatter kisses the top of her head, and reluctantly pulls her from him slightly telling her, “We should save that until we are safe.”

Alice smiles and knows he is right, but how she relished the feelings of being protected in his arms.  Then her curiosity gets the better of her, “How did you get in here?”

Hatter laughs in relief knowing that she is going to be okay, if she still has her curiosity. He tells honestly, “I don’t know, ask Charlie.”

Charlie has been trying to give them some privacy and also to find the door out of here.  He hears what Just Alice has says though, and answers her, “Believe it or not, we’re in your head.”

Alice is completely taken aback and asks, “What?”

Hatter laughs again, happy that she is with him. “Don’t ask.” The feeling of dread has dissipated.  All he can feel right this second is the joy of having Alice here, with him.

They are suddenly brought rudely back to reality hearing the evil twins yell out, “Sound the alarm!  Call the guards!”

Luckily, at that moment Charlie has found the door and opens it.  He leaps back and says, “Sanctus Deo” and gestures for them to exit before him.

They look at each other, shrug, as Hatter lets go of her and instead grabs Alice’s hand. He then turns, leading the way out the door.  He is not going to let her go no matter what, not when he has just got her back.  He leads her down the stairs and can hear Charlie behind them.  As he reaches the bottom, he runs to the corner, making sure she is still okay as he rounds the corner.

He glances back and sees that Charlie has stopped on the stairs.  Before he can say anything, Charlie takes off down the stairs. Charlie makes it to the bottom before a troop of suits sees them from on top of the stairs and starts to run down the stairs.

Hatter, Alice, and Charlie run around the corner into a foyer.  They make it halfway to the exit before a larger troop of suits come down the hall in front of them.

 Charlie takes off for the elevators, yelling at them to follow.  A poor Diamond casino girl barely gets out of the way before they rush into the elevator.  Hatter pushes Alice and Charlie behind him as he stands at the doors making sure none of the suits make it through before the doors shut.  Once they are shut he briefly thinks through their options, and even though he knows Alice will be upset, he can’t think of another alternative that may give them a chance to make it out of here.  He hits the up bottom.

Alice looks at what button he pushes.  Is he kidding?  Did he forget about her thing with heights and after where he just found her?  She finds herself starting to fall apart and tries to hold it together.  ‘But!’ “Up?”  She turns to him and can’t help herself, “Why up?”

Hatter knows she is being pushed beyond her limit. He can see it on her face, he tries to reason with her,”Do we have a choice?  Alice, I am sorry but they would expect us to go down.  This may buy us enough time to get out of here.”  He can see she is trying to pull herself together and begins to get worried.  Maybe it had been too soon to not worry about what she has gone through…

Charlie interrupts his train of thought, telling Alice, “Alice of Legend, your presence in this world is no accident. You are here for a reason.”

Alice looks at him while she is still catching her breath from the run.  She swallows still fighting the panic and the overwhelming fear.  ‘Up! They are going up!’  She tells Charlie, “Please Charlie, it’s just plain Alice.”

Charlie needs to tell her what he has found out earlier when he was told how to find her, “Just Plain Alice, I will stand at your side, shoulder to shoulder, knee to…”

Hatter can see Charlie is upsetting Alice, “Charlie!!” Alice has enough to deal with right now.  He is watching her face intently as he sees her fighting her fear.  He is getting more and more worried with her reactions.  She was not this bad in the City!

 “…wobbly knee.” Charlie trails off.

Hatter feels bad.  Charlie is trying to tell her what Wonderland has already told him.  But, “Now is not such a good time.” No, right now they need to get out of here.  He needs to get Alice out of here.  That is his main priority.

Alice turns and flings herself into Hatter’s arms.  She is losing the fight with her emotions and needs him.  She is also remembering Mad March and that was the last straw.  Hatter has no idea how much danger he is in right now.

 He holds her, realizing that she is upset and needs to be reassured.  There isn’t much time but he will do what he can for her.  But, he can feel himself getting angry.  What had happened?  Why is she so upset?

Alice can’t help it.  She needs Hatter so much right now.  She cannot explain it any better than that, a need.  She thinks back to what she has realized earlier, when she had resigned herself to dying to protect Hatter.   They will need to be very lucky to get away from here.   Mad March especially will be doing what he can to get to Hatter.  She looks up at Hatter, and telling Charlie and him, “You guys shouldn’t have come. You could have gotten yourself killed.” She doesn’t think she could survive something happening to Hatter.

“Alice, I told you I would come after you.  I can’t NOT come after you; it was not even an option.”  He stops and tries to think of a way to tell her what she means to him.

Alice looks at him.  She can admit to herself that she loves him; in fact she has admitted it already.  She is too shy to tell him and to be frank this will be the first time she has said those words to someone since her father left.  But…

Hatter sees her struggling with something and folds her in his arms again.  He hugs her close and tells her softly, “We are not safe yet luv.  Just hold it together for just a bit longer, kay?” He feels her nodding and he releases her, but grabs her hand. He really hates to ask her, but he has a feeling he needs to know, “I hate to ask Alice, but what happened?”

Alice gasps softly. She had forgotten! With the Truth Room and the truths it has shown her about her feelings about Hatter, and her worry about his danger from Mad March, she had completely forgotten about Jack.  She tells him, “Hatter, remember what we talked about last night?”

Hatter realizes she doesn’t realize how long she has been in the casino.  But he does remember vaguely their conversation, “About Jack?” Thank God they had that conversation; he has no jealousy with the man. He knows she is his.  But it won’t make him stop when he meets the man and shows him that Alice is his.

“Yes.”  She looks down, feeling the shame again from the revelations in the throne room.  Why didn’t she realize it before?

Hatter is worried, what happened?  Alice is looking more and more overwhelmed.  He asks her concerned, “Alice, what is it?  Did you see Jack?  Is he ok?”

Alice’s temper begins to flare, then dies quickly as her shame comes back, as she remembers the shocks to her ego she has suffered through to find out, “He’s her son.”

Hatter stares at her, and then glances at Charlie, who is staring back at him in equal shock. “The Prince? Jack Heart?”  The look on her face, so sad, looking so broken and ashamed all at the same time? He feels himself getting angry. What happened in there?!? ‘What did they do to my Alice?’  Before he can stop himself, he hears himself say in shock, “Jack Heart was your boyfriend?”

Alice looks at him, seeing him getting angry and is confused.   Why is he angry?  Is he mad at her?  She looks back at him, thinking she can’t take much more of this. Then the elevator ding interrupts them signaling their arrival.  The doors open and she hears Charlie say, “Oh, no.” They turn around to see two suits on the roof.

Hatter sees them and grows angrier to the point he is basically seeing red.  ‘They will not hurt my Alice!’  He goes after the suits, needing to beat the living shit out of someone. Hatter forgets all his training, turning to physical outlet that his anger is allowing him; he goes in swinging his Sledgehammer.  The first one ducks, and as he follows through the punch, he is swung around by the second Ace.

 The guy punches him in the face, knocking off his hat. ‘Oi! That’s going to leave a mark!’  The Ace swerves out of his second punch, blocks his third punch, and then follows up with a blow to Hatter’s stomach.  As he folds up, the Ace grabs him, and tries to push him over the edge by his throat while choking him.  Hatter grows even angrier, swings his right fist, and punches the guy in the side.  He hears a satisfying crunch and stands up.  Hatter walks over, grabbing his hat as he wipes away the blood he can feel at the corner of his mouth.  When he turns around, the Ace blanches.  Hatter’s skin around his eyes is black as sin.  Hatter throws his hat up to his left hand and then uses his sledgehammer to knock the guy out. Hatter puts his hat back on, turns around to take care of the other guy, and stops, shocked. Unbeknownst to him, his eyes return to normal.

Alice stares at Hatter as he goes after the suits.  Is he crazy?  She and Charlie run to back him up.  The suit that dodges Hatter, cockily grins, ready to fight what he thinks is a defenseless woman and an old man.

Charlie stands up straighter and tells Alice, “Behind me Alice.”  He tries to pull his sword out, but it is stuck.  The Ace grins and starts to walk up with his fist raised. Charlie holds up his hand saying “Ah…” and tries to pull out his sword again. The Ace’s grins get bigger and he punches Charlie out.

Alice finally has an outlet for her temper.  She only retains enough of control over it to be able to fight as she was taught and attacks him.  She punches him in the face and rocks him back.  He grows angry that a mere woman punched him and comes back at her.  She dodges and blocks his blows, getting in position to flip him on his back. While he is down she changes positions to flip him back over to his front knocking the wind out of him.

Charlie stands back up and walks over to the man who is looking quite shocked that a woman has defeated him. He tells him, “Bow to the Hand of Diocles.” With that he hits him on the head knocking him out.

This last part is what Hatter has witnessed that made him stop in shock.  He thinks back to the Great Library and Dodo, and realizes that Alice must have taken care of the Ace.  He goes to make sure Alice is okay.

Alice looks Hatter over, as he walks over to her.  She sees that he must have gotten whatever anger he had out of his system.  As he comes over to her, she hugs him and softly asks, “Are we ok?” She feels a little calmer herself, but she cannot take much more of this emotional rollercoaster.  But, in her heart she knows Hatter is worth it, and to be honest, he isn’t the one causing most of it.  His reactions though, mean more to her than all the rest.

Hatter looks down at her shocked, “Why wouldn’t we be?” and then he realizes that she is thinking he had been angry at her. “Oh God no, Alice!  I was not angry at you.  I realized in the elevator looking at you, what you must have gone through.  Knowing the Queen like I do, she had probably humiliated you.  Especially when she realized you had dated her son!”  ‘So stupid, Hatter!’  He should have realized that she didn’t know why he is angry and right after he had said… He pulls her closer and tells her, “I am sorry. I seem to make a regular chore of boxing this up royal with you.  We need to get out of here and talk, luv.”

That is the second time he has called her that.  But he does have a point.  They can’t talk when at anytime the suits may show up.  She looks around and asks, “What now?”

Hatter looks around the rooftop seeing if there is any way they can get out of this.  Then he spots the pink flamingoes.  “We get on one of those.” With that he runs over to them.  Alice and Charlie follow him.  Hatter gets on one and tells them, “Get on.”

Charlie heads to the other and fawns over them saying, “Articulated birds of the Empyrean. What genius!”

Alice looks at the… whatever they are… “These things fly?”

Hatter shakes his head, her and the questions! “We don’t have time to think, Alice.  Just get on.”  If she will only hurry, we can make it out of here and he can get her somewhere safe.  He feels a sense of urgency overcome him and knows it to be Wonderland warning him that they need to get going!

Alice walks to the edge and realizes how high they are.  She has limits and is quickly approaching them.   “I am not getting on that.”

He hates to argue with her, but he can feel that they are running out of time…  “Alice!  You don’t have another choice.”  He pleads with her. He has no problem begging her for anything.  He really has no pride when it comes to this woman.

She stares at Hatter.  She can’t do it!  “You don’t understand.  I’m NOT getting on that!” It is just too much!! She loves this man and will do anything.  But if she does this… she just can’t! The short reprieve from her emotional overload with the fighting is falling away fast.

Hatter looks at her and can see she is beginning to panic.  Oh, no… She can’t fall apart now!  With what he has gathered from their conversation, and where he had found her, he knows she has been pushed to her limits.  Alice needs to be stronger for just a little bit longer.  He will get her somewhere safe and then she can fall apart.  He will hold her and help her out as much as he can.  But, he can’t do that unless they are safe.   He tries to think of how he can get her on the bird.  He tries to convince her, “It’s perfectly safe…” and looking out realizes that it CAN be safer he amends his statement, “safe-ish.”

Alice tries to make him understand. “No, you don’t understand, I have a thing about flying!”

At that moment suits pile out of the entrance way down the way and starts to shoot at them.  Hatter realizes that their time is up and they have to leave NOW. He tells her searching her eyes, “Yeah?  I’ve got a thing about bullets!”

Seeing the panic in her eyes about to take over, he looks in them, and tells her over the sound of bullets ricocheting around them, “Look, I’ll do the flying.  All you have to do is hold on.”  She looks away and stares back down at the ground and he can see she is trying not to lose it. He feels proud of her for fighting the overwhelming fear that he knows she must be feeling on top of whatever had happened to her in the casino.

Hatter tells her, “Alice, look at me!”  She glances up quickly and stares at him. He talks to her softly but firmly, “I wouldn’t let you do it if I didn’t think you’d be ok.”  He prays she can hold it together and realize he is being honest with her.

She looks in his eyes and searches them. She can feel herself losing it and can’t stop it.  But Hatter is pleading with her.  ‘Alice, it comes down to one thing, do you trust him?’  And the answer to that question is always yes.  She climbs up behind Hatter.

In the meantime Charlie has gotten over his rapture of the pink flamingoes and is sitting on it looking at it and wonders, “How do you get it to fly?”  He notices a large red button on the top of the head and presses it.  He zooms away at a high rate of speed.

Hatter replies staring off at Charlie, “Like that, I suppose.”

Alice has her arms around him tightly as she is looking over his shoulder; she says worriedly “That’s fast…”

Hatter agrees with her but for a different reason.  He is thinking that this may let them have a chance and get away, “Oh yeah.  Hold on.” And with that he hits the button.

Alice hugs him harder, hiding her head in the nook of his neck, breathing in his scents of earl grey and leather as they wash over her, calming her just enough.  She can smell him and feel him pressed up against her.  She concentrates on these sensations to bring her back.  All she has wanted for the past day is him and here he is.  Her Knight.  Well her other Knight since she guesses Charlie will be a Knight in shining armor as well.

She smiles and Hatter glances back at her.  “You okay?”  He is really worried about her and needs to confirm she is all right.

She nods. Everything is better, Mad March can’t get to Hatter here; he is taking her away from the casino.  She will have the time to pull herself back together.

He smiles and looks forward.

Alice realizes how lucky she is to have a guy like Hatter. She hugs him tighter and lays her head on his back.  And she realizes that she is doing exactly what he had suggested on the ride to the Kingdom and laughs.

Hatter hears her and smiles.  She may not be all the way back to herself, but he is not going to lose her.  It is not even an option.  He will do whatever is needed to help her recover.  Hatter feels some of his anger come back.  And after he makes sure she is ok, he will do what is needs to be done to bring the Queen down.  ‘This ends soon.’

They catch up with Charlie, who is laughing in delight, and playing around.  He yells to them, “We are angels.  The wind and clouds under our command. Oh, heavenly joy!”

Hatter and Alice grin at each other at his enthusiasm. But, all too soon the moment ends with the sound of bullets flying past them.  Alice and Hatter try to see what it was.

Hatter realizes who it is and yells, “Aces!”  Oh, this is not good.  And, Alice is BEHIND him.

They hear a shot hit Charlie’s bird and it must have missed.  But the Ace has his trajectory down and shoots again and this one hits.  Charlie yells at them, “I’m going down!”

Alice screams “NO!” as Hatter yells “Charlie!”  They watch in horror as Charlie crashes into the lake below them.

Too soon after that, they hear the dreaded sound of bullets winging by them. Hatter tries to dodge the bullets, but he hears the sound of one hitting them, and realizes it is just a matter of time.  Then he hears the one sound he has dreaded, a bullet hitting the motor.  He yells to Alice, “Alice, hold on!” And tries to bring them up and create enough drag so they can survive the crash into the water.  Too soon the water comes up and they hit it.

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1 Comment

  1. missrissa81

    Is it bad that I have to get ready for work, but all I want to do is click next?? Oh well!

    Reply

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