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(A-Z Challenge, read sequentially from A-Z! [Hint: Click HERE and scroll to the bottom.] Or don’t, that’s fine, too.)

“Delirante seishinbyō…” Jabari breathed out the words as he stood motionless in the doorway of the cargo hold. “Ann, maybe you should…”

Ann was already clearing the short distance after only a short pause when Sag looked up to her with that now catatonic gaze. Jabari couldn’t make out what Sag had said to Ann, but she was already driving a device into Sag’s shoulder. Jabari could only guess that the device contained a syringe with the medication she mentioned earlier. Jabari felt that it was perhaps beyond medicine at this point as he tried to piece together how Sag so quickly fell apart in only a few short hours since his mental state began dismantling. As soon as Ann pulled out the needle, Sag quickly grabbed her by the shoulders and pulled her closer to his face, nearly nose to nose.

“Is that you, Ann?! Answer me!” Sag screamed, “Or is it that fiery headed demon?!”

Jabari moved without thinking. He grabbed Sag by the hair as he began standing, Ann still tight in his grip. Jabari wrenched Sag’s head back into the edge of the cargo container he was still attached to. Sag roared, and his grip tightened on Ann, her face wincing from the pain as bloodied fingertips drove into her shoulders. Sag suddenly threw Ann hard into Jabari, throwing them both into an edge of another container. Jabari’s head hit hard on the metal grate near the bottom of the container, the green glow of the magnetic notification filling his vision. His head took another blow as Ann fell into him.

Jabari’s vision swam, he felt like he had lost consciousness, his eyes were unfocused, and his head throbbed. Jabari could hear Sag grunting against his restraints as he tried to get on his feet. Jabari’s eyes quickly focused as he found himself wondering when Ann’s medicine was going to do anything, but then remembering that there may be a slim chance in hell of that happening with how deep Sag had fallen into madness. The first thing Jabari focused in on was a red light, blinking away the last unfocused bits of vision, he could see Sag running his shoulder into the cargo box. He looked back down to the red light, “Shit,” Jabari muttered. He didn’t have time to wonder how the container had become demagnetized before Sag hit the box again and pulled his restraints free from below the box.

Slowly, Sag turned to regard Jabari, those orb-less sockets seeming to, ‘see,’ Jabari. Without intending to, Jabari backed into the container he was thrown into earlier. “Ann. Ann?” Jabari looked around, ‘Where was she,’ he thought. Just then Ann crawled on top of a container behind Sag as he slowly moved towards Jabari. Ann jumped the distance between the metal crate and Sag. Ann landed on his back and drove another device into Sag’s neck, delivering another dose of whatever she was stuffing Sag with.

Sag growled as he grabbed Ann’s arm and head bringing her over his shoulder and slamming her back down into the metal grate floor. Sag brought his foot up and slammed it down where Ann’s face was a moment before. Ann gasped as she rolled away from Sag trying to suck air into lungs that had just had the wind knocked from them. She didn’t wait until she recovered before she lunged towards Sag. Jabari watched as Ann ran her shoulder deep into Sag’s abdomen knocking them both to the ground. Sag seemed to slump as Ann recovered and stood over Sag.

“Finally,” she said through heavy breaths.

Jabari dared to stand. He approached Ann and the now horizontal Sag. “Did the medicine work, then?” Jabari asked Ann as he looked down towards the slow breathing madman.

“Oh, that wasn’t medicine. That was two doses of the heaviest tranquilizer I had, needed to get Sag sedated before I can get him out of here.” Ann said, still trying to catch all the breath she lost.

Jabari nodded, “Pretty damn impressive, chief.”

“Only what was needed, Jabi,” Ann replied lightly.

“You said we were leaving?” Jabari asked, ignoring the nickname he hated.

“I said I, not we. I need to get Sachi to the lab on Herculina’s outpost here. Current changes in circumstance might change a few things, but not many. We need to bring him back to us, we can’t do what we need to do without him,” Ann said.

“Well, I don’t know, the bastard always seemed intent on destroying everything we’ve worked for, Ann,” Jabari said, unmoved.

“Not his fault, you know that. Come now, help me get him in a cocoon gurney so he’s strapped in just in case he decides to try and murder us again,” Ann said, with only a small sense of sarcasm in her tone.

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