Isaac just shrugged. "All the same, she does have a few instances that might make her have reason to doubt you."
Leyla skidded to a halt at the edge of the hole that had been her home for close to five years. What the hell? Stunned, she stepped off of the bike, standing at the edge of the crater and staring down. Had Eli wanted to get her out of her home this badly? For a moment, she stood there, trembling, and then she slid down the edge of the hole, kicking up clouds of dust until she settled at the bottom, clinging to the line she had left to the top, to get back out through.
This was it, then. Her family was gone. Her home, gone. Her fortune, gone, her authority, undermined.
"Yeah, well." Isaac jerked his head at the screen, where Leyla was sobbing in the dirt, in the middle of a giant hole in the ground. "If you wanted to break her, I think you managed." That base had been like Leyla's child, she had slaved over it so meticulously. It was awkward, to see her like that. Leyla had always kept up a stiff front, always their fiery, hot tempered leader. Isaac knew that if she knew she was being watched, she would never have let herself fall apart.
"Excuse me. I have a conference call with a few contractors to endure." Nodding, Isaac left the control room to pick up his work in his own space.
Elijah leaned back in his chair as he watched Leyla. Good. The only way to go from rock bottom was up. Perhaps she'd grow from this experience, and learn to be a little more respectful toward him. She didn't have to like him, but she had better respect him. He'd only been helping her this entire time, and all she'd done was act as paranoid as her mother had been.
It was hours before Leyla pulled herself up again, and it was late at night by the time she returned to Eli's base. She had nowhere else to go. Her body language couldn't have been more different as she walked down the stairs and through the control room. Her shoulders were slumped, rather than proudly held back, her footsteps were quiet rather than authoritative, and there wasn't a lick of fire left in her eyes as she slunk along the outer edges of the room, covered in dirt. Part of her was glad it was late, that there wouldn't be anyone to deal with, and the other part didn't care.
Ravid was up, waiting for Leyla to come back. He sat in the room they shared, but stood when she finally opened the door and walked in. Of course, he knocked over bin that was next to the bed, which he'd cleaned out so nothing spilled out from it. After righting the bin once more, he looked up at Leyla.
For a moment, Leyla was torn between the parts of herself, but eventually the side that just didn't care won out, and she shook her head mutely, stepping into the tiny bathroom and closing the door behind her. She shut her clothes into the waterproof cabinet under the sink and turned on the overhead shower, leaning her forehead against the wall. Her head felt thick, and she was exhausted from the night before. When she finally shut off the water and dried off, she wrapped a towel around her curves, stepping out again to fetch clean clothes from her things.
"You should be sleeping." Her voice was still a little rough, so she kept her voice quiet to mask that.
"I wanted to make sure you would come back alright. You did save me from going back out there." It was the least he could do. Perhaps he could make sure she didn't commit suicide. She was the only one who had stood up for him, if only a little. He was here because of her words, and that's all that mattered, even if she did want to take off his mask and invade his privacy.
"I got enough rest during the day while you were out."
Shaking her head again, Leyla stepped back into the bathroom and dressed quietly, letting her hair drip around her shoulders as she walked back to her bed, lying down quietly and closing her eyes. "I'm fine, thank you." She might as well get used to the lie. She had considered killing herself, actually. It would be easy- as easy as a single phone call to a government office.
"Alright." But Ravid didn't lie down to go to sleep. He kept an eye on Leyla, not knowing when she could just decide to end it all. He'd seen how she'd broken down on the video after she'd seen her demolished home. He'd heard the pure grief in her heart with each sob. She was a desperate caged bird now. She could try anything.
For once, Leyla was limp against the bed. She could feel Ravid watching her, but she didn't care anymore whether or not he wanted to do her harm. Her life couldn't have been much more tattered anyway. In the morning, she didn't rise with her alarm like she usually did. Instead, she reached out and hit it, then dropped her arm back to her side. Eli could just do without her for awhile. She wasn't sure if she was even willing to face him- she wasn't in the mood to put up with him, she knew that much.
Ravid left Leyla in the room after seeing that she wouldn't be doing much but lying there. He entered the main room to find Elijah smoking, like he had been the other day. A good thing Ravid had his mask. It acted as a gas mask that protected him from anything harmful in the air.
Elijah didn't even look at Ravid. "She dead yet?"
Ravid sat down quietly, though he almost slipped out of his chair. "I don't think she has the heart to kill herself."
"What the hell is wrong with you?"
Isaac's shouting could be heard all the way from the hallway through to the control room, and within a few minutes, he'd dragged Leyla into the work room in cuffs. "And you two," he started in on Eli and Ravid, furious. "You left her alone? Seriously?" It had been sheer luck that he'd come to ask her a question just in time to find her with a potential serious overdose of the drugs Eli had given her spread out on her bed.
"Leave me alone, Isaac." Leyla was glowering at him. He'd told her off for falling apart, which meant that he had seen that, Eli had seen that, and Ravid had seen that, and now they all knew how much of a pathetic girl she was. Great. Because it wasn't like her reputation had been all she had left to cling to.
"Fat chance," he retorted. "What were you thinking? Your father didn't raise you to be a bloody quitter."
Ravid slunk away, staying out of this. How had he known that the minute he walked away she would go insane? She'd looked like she was just going to sleep all day!
Eli merely gave Isaac a hard look. "She's a grown woman. If she wants to end her life, that's her prerogative. That's her choice. If you expect me to baby her because she's now part of the 'I've lost everything I've worked hard for' club and she can't handle it, think again." There were many people out there like her who had lost everything of meaning in their lives because of this war and virus. Leyla wasn't anything special.
"If you're so concerned with her, take your nose out of that computer and give her some attention for once."
Isaac gritted his teeth. He didn't expect Eli to baby her, he expected the man to clean up his own freaking messes. This man had been pushing Leyla to this point ever since he'd showed up. "Come on, Leyla," he muttered, turning to her. "Apparently we're bothering the nice man with our trivialities."
Leyla wasn't going anywhere with Isaac, she was still angry at him. "Take these off," she growled, holding out her cuffed wrists.
"I don't think so."
"Isaac. Take them off, or I swear-" She faltered, horrified at the tears in her voice.