Kaleigha stared at the object, hypnotized by the rhythmic movements. The woman touched the orb and looked at Kaleigha. A deep silence, like the one she experienced on the street with her father, filled her head. She frowned and the silence fell away.
“Never,” the woman whispered, her voice filled with awe. She removed her hand and looked at the crying woman. It was too much for the crier, who fled the room in hysterics.
“What is that?” Kaleigha leaned forward to get a better look.
“It’s a relic we use to control others in your position,” the woman gave the orb a disgusted look. “To make them amenable to the situation.”
“Uh-huh,” Kaleigha sat back in her chair and raised her eyebrows at the woman.
“Clearly,” the woman stood, “It is useless against you.”
“So, now what?” Kaleigha stood, too. She looked around to be sure that no one else was in the room. There was no telling what these people might try.
“Now?” the woman laughed, bitter and cold. “Now we stare at the remains of our plans and hope something better unfolds.” The woman turned toward the door.
“Wait!” Kaleigha moved toward her and the woman cringed. “I-I want to know. How would my death help the city?”
The woman sized Kaleigh up before answering. Her gaze felt like a physical touch, making Kaleigha wonder what other powers the woman held.
“The world around you is an illusion,” the woman said finally. “Not us or the city. Beyond that. The rest of the state, the country, the rest of the planet. All of it is a full scale illusion maintained by us, The Union.”