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By:Veronica Roth

When it comes closer, I cut the tie around Caleb's wrists with a pocketknife and keep a firm hold on his arm.

"You know how to do this, right?" I say. "Get in the last car."

He unbuttons the jacket and drops it on the ground. "Yeah."

Starting at one end of the platform, we run together along the worn boards, keeping pace with the open door. He doesn't reach for the handle, so I push him toward it. He stumbles, then grabs it and pulls himself into the last car. I am running out of space-the platform is ending-I seize the handle and swing myself in, my muscles absorbing the pull forward.

Tris stands inside the car, wearing a small, crooked smile. Her black jacket is zipped up to her throat, framing her face in darkness. She grabs my collar and pulls me in for a kiss. As she pulls away, she says, "I always loved watching you do that."

I grin.

"Is this what you had planned?" Caleb demands from behind me. "For her to be here when you kill me? That's-"

"Kill him?" Tris asks me, not looking at her brother.

"Yeah, I let him think he was being taken to his execution," I say, loud enough that he can hear. "You know, sort of like he did to you in Erudite headquarters."

"I . . . it isn't true?" His face, lit by the moon, is slack with shock. I notice that his shirt's buttons are in the wrong buttonholes.

"No," I say. "I just saved your life, actually."

He starts to say something, and I interrupt him. "Might not want to thank me just yet. We're taking you with us. Outside the fence."

Outside the fence-the place he once tried so hard to avoid that he turned on his own sister. It seems a more fitting punishment than death, anyway. Death is so quick, so certain. Where we're going now, nothing is certain.         



He looks frightened, but not as frightened as I thought he would be. I feel like I understand, then, the way he ranks things in his mind: his life, first; his comfort in a world of his own making, second; and somewhere after that, the lives of the people he is supposed to love. He is the sort of despicable person who has no understanding of how despicable he is, and my badgering him with insults won't change that; nothing will. Rather than angry, I just feel heavy, useless.

I don't want to think about him anymore. I take Tris's hand and lead her to the other side of the car, so we can watch the city disappear behind us. We stand side by side in the open doorway, each of us holding one of the handles. The buildings create a dark, jagged pattern on the sky.

"We were followed," I say.

"We'll be careful," she answers.

"Where are the others?"

"In the first few cars," she says. "I thought we should be alone. Or as alone as we can get."

She smiles at me. These are our last moments in the city. Of course we should spend them alone.

"I'm really going to miss this place," she says.

"Really?" I say. "My thoughts are more like, ‘Good riddance.'"

"There's nothing you'll miss? No good memories?" She elbows me.

"Fine." I smile. "There are a few."

"Any that don't involve me?" she says. "That sounds self-centered. You know what I mean."

"Sure, I guess," I say, shrugging. "I mean, I got to have a different life in Dauntless, a different name. I got to be Four, thanks to my initiation instructor. He gave me the name."

"Really?" She tilts her head. "Why haven't I met him?"

"Because he's dead. He was Divergent." I shrug again, but I don't feel casual about it. Amar was the first person who noticed that I was Divergent, and he helped me to hide it. But he couldn't hide his own Divergence, and that killed him.

She touches my arm, lightly, but doesn't say anything. I shift, uncomfortable.

"See?" I say. "Too many bad memories here. I'm ready to leave."

I feel empty, not because of sadness, but because of relief, all the tension flowing out of me. Evelyn is in that city, and Marcus, and all the grief and nightmares and bad memories, and the factions that kept me trapped inside one version of myself. I squeeze Tris's hand.

"Look," I say, pointing at a distant cluster of buildings. "There's the Abnegation sector."

She smiles, but her eyes are glassy, like a dormant part of her is fighting its way out and spilling over. The train hisses over the rails, a tear drops down Tris's cheek, and the city disappears into the darkness.




THE TRAIN SLOWS down when we get closer to the fence, a signal from the driver that we should get off soon. Tobias and I sit in the doorway of the car as it moves lazily over the tracks. He puts his arm around me and touches his nose to my hair, taking a breath. I look at him, at the collarbone peeking out from the neck of his T-shirt, at the faint curl of his lip, and I feel something heating up inside me.

"What are you thinking about?" he says into my ear, softly.

I jerk to attention. I look at him all the time, but not always like that-I feel like he just caught me doing something embarrassing. "Nothing! Why?"

"No reason." He pulls me closer to his side, and I rest my head on his shoulder, taking deep breaths of the cool air. It still smells like summer, like grass baking in the heat of the sun.

"It looks like we're getting close to the fence," I say.

I can tell because the buildings are disappearing, leaving just fields, dotted with the rhythmic glow of lightning bugs. Behind me, Caleb sits near the other door, hugging his knees. His eyes find mine at just the wrong moment, and I want to scream into the darkest parts of him so he can finally hear me, finally understand what he did to me, but instead I just hold his stare until he can't take it anymore and he looks away.

I stand, using the handle to steady me, and Tobias and Caleb do the same. At first Caleb tries to stand behind us, but Tobias pushes him forward, right up to the edge of the car.         



"You first. On my mark!" he says. "And . . . go!"

He gives Caleb a push, just enough to get him off the car floor, and my brother disappears. Tobias goes next, leaving me alone in the train car.

It's stupid to miss a thing when there are so many people to miss instead, but I miss this train already, and all the others that carried me through the city, my city, after I was brave enough to ride them. I brush my fingers over the car wall, just once, and then jump. The train is moving so slowly that I overcompensate with my landing, too used to running off the momentum, and I fall. The dry grass scrapes my palms and I push myself to my feet, searching the darkness for Tobias and Caleb.

Before I find them, I hear Christina. "Tris!"

She and Uriah come toward me. He is holding a flashlight, and he looks far more alert than he did this afternoon, which is a good sign. Behind them are more lights, more voices.

"Did your brother make it?" Uriah says.

"Yeah." Finally I see Tobias, his hand gripping Caleb's arm, coming toward us.

"Not sure why an Erudite like you can't get it through his head," Tobias is saying, "but you aren't going to be able to outrun me."

"He's right," says Uriah. "Four's fast. Not as fast as me, but definitely faster than a Nose like you."

Christina laughs. "A what?"

"Nose." Uriah touches the side of his nose. "It's a play on words. ‘Knows' with a ‘K,' knowledge, Erudite . . . get it? It's like Stiff."

"The Dauntless have the weirdest slang. Pansycake, Nose . . . is there a term for the Candor?"

"Of course." Uriah grins. "Jerks."

Christina shoves Uriah, hard, making him drop the flashlight. Tobias, laughing, leads us to the rest of the group, standing a few feet away. Tori waves her flashlight in the air to get everyone's attention, then says, "All right, Johanna and the trucks will be about a ten-minute walk from here, so let's get going. And if I hear a word from anyone, I will beat you senseless. We're not out yet."

We move closer together like sections of a tightened shoelace. Tori walks a few feet in front of us, and from the back, in the dark, she reminds me of Evelyn, her limbs lean and wiry, her shoulders back, so sure of herself it's almost frightening. By the light of the flashlights I can just make out the tattoo of a hawk on the back of her neck, the first thing I spoke to her about when she administered my aptitude test. She told me it was a symbol of a fear she had overcome, a fear of the dark. I wonder if that fear still creeps up on her now, though she worked so hard to face it-I wonder if fears ever really go away, or if they just lose their power over us.

She moves farther away from us by the minute, her pace more like a jog than a walk. She is eager to leave, to escape this place where her brother was murdered and she rose to prominence only to be thwarted by a factionless woman who wasn't supposed to be alive.

She is so far ahead that when the shots go off, I only see her flashlight fall, not her body.

"Split up!" Tobias's voice roars over the sound of our cries, our chaos. "Run!"

I search in the dark for his hand, but I don't find it. I grab the gun Uriah gave me before we left and hold it out from my body, ignoring the way my throat tightens at the feel of it. I can't run into the night. I need light. I sprint in the direction of Tori's body-of her fallen flashlight.