Ti Chi pauses to take in the scene of the class tearfully enjoying this precious story.  She hates to, but she has to keep going.  “We were together a full month.  He did all that for me, and yet I never told him.  I wasn’t the one to tell the truth.  It should have been me, of all people, but it wasn’t.  Mikley, feeling guilty the more she got to know AB and Missy, confessed to the couple that they had been lied to about the resort.  The truth was we were a bunch of nasty crooks, cheats and liars, and we were all putting on a good face until the System Guards left.  We’d then go back to our normal way of doing things.  This crashed everything, and stabbed AB in the heart.  As genuine and loving as everyone had been, and after the month he and his sister just spent together, it was all a lie.

    AB realized that even if Mikley was honest enough in that moment to tell the truth, he didn’t know if the other employees would do the same.  He didn’t even know if Mikley was doing this to clear everything up till now, with the intentions of using this confession to earn a false trust that would secure a better chance of hiding things in the future.  Basically, everything AB could trust about this place died.  His choices were to either let us go and have our universe naturally play out its end or force a smile and bring us into the fold, knowing we might still be the same crooks, only now taking advantage of his kindness.  AB chose grace.  He decided it wasn’t worth the effort to be a detective and figure out our motives.  He more or less communicated the fact that he knew we might still be the same way, but he was choosing to love us just the same, no matter how much it hurt, because he’s seen the effects of letting other people’s cruelty determine his own actions, and that struggle is not worth it  He was kind, very kind about it, but he was thoroughly honest in letting us know that he wasn’t going to be naïve or ignorant in his dealing with us, but that anything he did for us was he intentional choice because he wanted to take care of us, even if we didn’t deserve it.  And then, he approached Fiona, our version of Keb.

    “As bubbly and friendly as she had been, now she was cold and reserved.  AB took her by the hand and examined her precious gloves she always wore.  Then, he escorted her to the home world of Simon the Siderian because something about these gloves seemed familiar.   You remember that Keb was a lost-long child living in an orphanage.  Well, so was Fiona as a kid.  However, AB had figured out that she was actually from the planet they were visiting.  After this girl had just been exposed as a liar, Astro Bomber took her looking for her parents because he wanted her to have the gift of knowing where she came from.  She got to see her parents and learn about her Siderian ancestry.  When the two came back to Angel Isle, we were all thoroughly scolded like there was no tomorrow by a brand-new Fiona who saw us all for the filth we were.  It was because of kind moments like this that we all genuinely changed.  That was months ago, and we’ve never regretted giving up our wicked ways, and OH, how we’re are so gratefully loyal to the friends that loved us when we should have all been scrapped.  THAT’S my big brother.”

    Now that she has her puppy back, Ti Chi looks at it, talking sweetly to it for a moment as she gathers her thoughts.  After a brief licking attack from this pupper, she switches to the other name she mentioned earlier.  “So, that’s our story.  We were jerks and kindness won us over.  Now, for Ina.  We like to call her Ina LVI as the district she was in before the unification worked well so that the Roman Numerals worked toward the slogan “Love Ina,” because her enigmatic personality, despite her smiles and giggles, all screamed that there was someone hurting inside.  It took a bit more time with her and the ones from her universe than it did with us to learn the truth, but it all finally came out.  Sure, Ina had her version of Fiona and Cici, as well as a much friendly Yvie, along with a few other SG equivalents, but everyone in her universe had one thing in common; they quivered when she walked by.

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