The cannon boomed twice, and the remaining tributes looked up.
Franziska spared the sky merely a glance, looking up from the fire she was building at her makeshift camp by the edge of the arena. Phoenix Wright hadn’t resurfaced after his plunge from the cliff, so she assumed one of the cannons was for him.
Kristoph awoke and sat up, tilting his head so that he could see the stars through the trees. His arms ached, one from a bite mark and one from an arrow wound. He could hardly put weight on them and instead trusted the muscles in his core to hold him up as he waited to see who had fallen.
No matter what he did, he was handicapped. If he stood out in the open, his mask glowed and gave away his position to everyone within a quarter of a mile. If he covered the mask, then he couldn’t see. And so every night, he was left with a Hobson’s choice: increase his chances of being killed, or resign himself to pure dumb luck?
He tried to take the edge off of each option by spending his nights sitting with his back to the largest object he could find, be it a tree, a rock, or the wall or a ditch. He had walked two days and two nights, so that he could be sure no one was beyond where he was, and sat against a boulder, facing the center of the arena.
Unfortunately, he hadn’t counted on the fact that someone else may have walked for three days and nights.
And, of course, from the dead body of his former ally.
Kristoph took off into the woods, and within minutes had found himself an empty clearing to rest in. He slowly raised his bitten arm and yanked the arrow from his shoulder. On an impulse, he nearly snapped it in his hands, but thought better of it and dropped it to the side for future use. Forgoing any plans to set up protection or tend to his wounds, he fell asleep as soon as he laid down.
Desiree, meanwhile, had quite the problem on her hands.
Should she kill the two strangers and let Apollo live? Any day before today, that would have been the easy solution. But could she even trust Apollo anymore? Would she be better off knocking out half of the alliance and hoping the other one would take her in? Should she shoot Apollo twice?
She looked over each tribute again. The one on the right, the tribute from District Eleven, looked strong. He had definitely lost weight, and his dark hair was filthy and matted, but there didn’t seem to be a scratch on him. As for the other one…well, he was the son of Gregory Edgeworth. He could be helpful…or he could be incredibly dangerous. But at the same time, he must have realized that there would be no future for him if he won; he would ultimately face the same fate as his father. So maybe he would be willing to make the ultimate sacrifice later on?
And then there was Apollo. He wasn’t the strongest player in the game, but he was from Twelve. Could she trust him, though? Her two allies had gone out alone this morning, and only one of them had come back. Unhurt, at that. Something was fishy here.
She raised the bow, decision made. The three men stared at her, paralyzed: one out of fear, one from sleepiness, and one due to pain. Desiree took aim at her target, pulled her arm back, steadied her shoulder…
Desiree glanced over at her fellow tribute, then back up at the sky.
"Ema’s dead. Maya too."
"B-But I just saw her! Ema, I mean…"
"And were you the last one to see her?"
"Yes. I mean no! I mean, I couldn’t have been. Right?"
When he sat down next to her, Apollo had put his bow between himself and Desiree. She grabbed it now, and jumped to her feet.
"No, Desiree, I didn’t!"
She notched an arrow.
"Then tell me what happened."
The two men collided in the air as the girls scrambled away from them.
Tigre, however, was faster. He pounced, and caught Maya’s leg by just the tips of his fingers. Godot lay on the ground, stunned from the impact, and Tigre lifted Maya in the air and held her to his chest.
Ema, charged, knife held over her head, and sliced at Tigre’s shoulder. The knife stuck, but the man swung Maya around, sending her smashing into Ema and throwing the girl to the ground.