Part 71: Interview 35 BonusBarracks 35 - A Fresh Approach
“Babe?” Sebastian says.
He’s met with silence. He’s sat with Adelaide in their room, but she’s straightening her clothes, ignoring him quite pointedly.
“Uh,” Sebastian continues, but Adelaide sighs and turns around to face him.
“Seb, I am obviously not in a very good mood right now, so why do you insist on annoying me? Go and do something else and let me just sort my washing. And no talking to anyone!”
“...Right. OK.” Sebastian says, and he stands up, walking to the door as Adelaide continues sorting her clothes, hurling them across her bed with reckless abandon. Opening the door as quietly as possible, he slips out of the room and begins wandering aimlessly down the hallway. Doors to the left and right, each one leading into the room of another pair of Green Earth soldiers, remain firmly closed. However, he soon hears music.
It’s not something he recognises. The beat is lively, though, and the singing sounds upbeat and charming. Sebastian follows the sound, soon finding his way to an open door. He peeks inside to see Amarah, spinning in an exciteable reel, her eyes closed, lost in the thrill of the music.
As the song comes to a close, Amarah opens her eyes and squeaks in surprise when she spots Sebastian. He lifts his hands in nervousness.
“Um, sorry! I was just caught up in the music.”
“Don’t worry about it, that’s the whole point of music! Do you want to dance?” Amarah says, extending a hand.
“Oh, I’m not sure if Addy would-” says Sebastian.
Amarah looks at him.
“Sebastian, I hope you don’t mind my saying so, but… are you happy? Adelaide always seems to be yelling at you.”
“Yeah, of course I am.” Sebastian replies defensively. “She yells at me because she loves me. And because I need to be better.”
“You need to be better?”
“Yes. I shouldn’t be talking to other girls, or annoying her, or doing anything that might upset her. And I have to be a good boyfriend by guessing what’s on her mind without needing to be told. It’s hard, but…” Sebastian says, his face falling.
“It sounds impossible. Sebastian, you know that most relationships aren’t like that, right?” Amarah says.
“I’ve never had another relationship. Adelaide says this is how things work.”
“She’s wrong. You need to have a different viewpoint.” Amarah says. “A relationship is all about equality. Both of you should feel comfortable with each other, and be happy with each other. Anybody who makes you feel uncomfortable, or not good enough, or tells you who you can and can’t talk to… they aren’t a good match for you.”
Sebastian glares at Amarah, a mix of rage and doubt in his eyes.
“You barely know me and Addy! You can’t say stuff like that. She’s… if it wasn’t for her, I’d be lonely. She’s always there for me.”
“Of course she is!” Amarah says fiercely. “Because she’s cut you off from everyone else. She gets you all to herself because that’s how she’s trained you. Don’t you feel restricted?”
“I… Addy just wants me to be faithful, that’s all. She doesn’t mind if I hang out with other people, it’s just girls…” Sebastian says. He shakes his head. “I don’t need to listen to this. It’s confusing me.”
He goes to exit, and Amarah springs for the door.
“Wait, Sebastian, I was just trying to help-”
Sebastian strides away, his mind in turmoil. He knocks on the door of his and Adelaide’s shared room, and hears a grumpy “Come in.”
He opens the door, and as Adelaide looks at him venomously, now sat on her bed with her clothing sorted, Amarah’s advice comes to mind.
She gets you all to herself because that’s how she’s trained you.
“Um, the guys were going to play some poker later. I thought I might go with them.”
Adelaide crosses her legs. “And leave me all on my own for the evening? Is that what a good boyfriend does?”
“We spend every evening together, though…” murmurs Sebastian, losing his nerve.
“Oh, I’m sorry, are you getting tired of me? Seb, you know none of those guys actually want to be friends with you, don’t you? The girls just want to steal you, and the guys want to steal from you.”
“...Yeah, I suppose you’re right.”
“Stay in with me, then.” Adelaide replies, getting up from the bed and moving towards him. She reaches up and places one hand gently on his face, stroking him softly. “We don’t need any of those other people, do we?”
“Uh, no.” Sebastian replies, a chilling feeling crawling up his spine. “No, I guess not…”