The Plan For a Great Prison Escape

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Not again...

You had another dream again and you couldn't tell if it was going to be a nightmare. Floating in the stillness of sleep, still you were able to feel the prickling cold of a regular Snezhnayan day. Snow crunched under your feet, your body felt light, your hands burned. There was nothing for you to hold on to. No one...

This... you remembered well. Without the need of ingesting that strong Pyro medication, you fell into one of your earliest memories of your enlistment into the Fatui military.

Shrill laughter surrounded your ears and you found yourself laying on the snowy ground. A bad habit of yours, swearing under your breath and letting your anger get the better of you - you dug your fingers into the snow and pushed yourself up to your feet.

The rest of the Cryo Cicin Mages continued to giggle amongst themselves as you patted your recruit uniform clean. Training continued as usual. This was just about the sixth time you've had those pesky little bugs, the Cryo Cicins, totally backfire on you. They refused to follow your commands and continued to wreak havoc on the training grounds. The training instructor even had to get involved to put the Cicins back into their cage.

Never in your life have you felt this embarrassed - even angry with yourself. Every single night, you laid in bed and continued to torment yourself with thoughts of: 'Why did I do that?', 'I should have done something different', 'I'll never become a soldier'. You were patient zero in a plague of self-doubt, self-hatred, and self-disgust.

You happened to be pushed past your breaking point when you failed the skills test in front of the rest of the Cicin Mages. The sight of the training dummy still standing after you've put all of your strength into an attack turned you into the laughingstock of the century. Beads of sweat were like sparkling snowflakes that sprinkled over your reddening face, your arm ached from the weight of the Cicins' lantern, and your legs almost gave way.

Every single laugh you heard from the girls' mouths impaled its own blade into your already defeated heart. The buzzing of the Cicins were like taunts that you couldn't escape from, the bugs only flew around your head and refused to return to the lantern.

"This can't be the same girl that's related to Lieutenant Nikolai, she can't even take down a single target." Whispers swam amongst the group.

Your instructor was not so pleased by your performance, yet they weren't surprised either. In fact, nobody in this section was surprised that you bombed the test. Apparently, all this time you've spent training instead of eating or sleeping meant absolutely nothing. You were nothing but a failure who tried so hard to be just like their older sibling. A failure. A wasteful failure.

To everyone's horrid surprise, they all jumped when they saw you pitch the lantern directly at the training dummy. A loud crash followed by the sound of the other girls screaming was bound to draw the attention of the overseeing Harbinger from across the training grounds.

In all her glory, the eighth Fatui Harbinger La Signora merely glanced over at where all the commotion was coming from. She watched you from afar as you knocked the dummy to the ground with a single strike from the thrown lantern. You could be seen talking back to the training instructor, arguing back and forth until they furiously wrote a rejection letter for your military application.

With that, you stormed off the base grounds.

Completely entertained by the sight before her, La Signora decided to satisfy her curiosity to see what crazy thing you were going to do next. She dismissed whatever work she was doing and secretly followed your footprints that lead down the same forest path you ran through. A fellow lieutenant accompanied the Harbinger just in case things got a bit too rowdy - call it double assurance.

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