Smith didn't even look up when Kurdy entered his room; his face pale, the hair unkempt, dark circles around his eyes. Kurdy decided to ignore this for the moment.
„Markus has a job for us,“ he said.
„He wants us to go to Clearwater; there are some rumors about a group of skinheads, roaming around in the nearby woods.“
„Maybe you better ask someone else.“
„Why should I? You are my partner,“ Kurdy insisted.
„We make a good team, and I know I can trust you.“
Tired Smith shook his head.
„You are better off without me.“
„You're arm still hurts?“
Almost against his will Smith stared at his right arm, made a fist and opened it again, stretched his fingers.
„No, I guess it's okay again.“
„So, don't you think it's about time to look forward? What's happened was a shock for all of us. After all the time, Libby lived with us; she was a friend, I would have trusted her blind. No one could see the truth.“
„I should have been able to see it.“
Carefully Smith let his arm sink back into his lap and closed his eyes.
„I should have found a way to stop her. But I killed her.“
„It was Libby who made the first step,“ Kurdy reminded him.
„She was the one who betrayed all of us. She was the one who tried to kill you first. You did nothing wrong. You only protected yourself and probably avoided the worst.“
Smith smiled sadly; kept quiet for a moment before answering.
„Jeremiah will never see it that way. Every time we meet, he looks at me with these eyes full of hate and unforgiveness. Yesterday he called me a schizo murderer; he says, without me, she would be still alive.
I guess he's right. Whatever I do, I make it even worse. If I wouldn't have followed her into this church...“
„She would have betrayed all of us. Jeremiah's love, your friendship, Markus' trust. The Mountain wouldn't be safe any longer and everything we are fighting for since years would have been in vain.
The future, Smith, the future of the world. A life in freedom and peace for the children. For Rose.“
It hit him like a bold; Smith stiffened, then started to tremble uncontrollably.
He whispered her name, again and again, his fingers clutched the old blanket, which was lying on his bed as if he was looking for a hold.
Finally, Kurdy stepped closer, put his big hand on the shoulder of the little guy.
„Rose. All the children at school, all over the world. For them we need to be strong; because of them, we can't stop fighting now. No matter how hard it is sometimes.
You have made the only right decision. And now it's about time that you start to live with it. Because our fight has just started.“