Elijah kept going and whipped around the hallway. There was a door to outside, and a dark grey one to the stairs.
He threw the grey door open, and immediately a light went on. Go to the second floor, he told himself. Second floor, he repeated under his breath.
The stairs were already echoing with his footfalls, and multiple other echoes started as his pursuers followed him.
But he made to the door of the second level before them. He grabbed the handle and started to thrust it open.
It only jerked. He pulled at it again. It was locked.
He looked back, panicking for a moment, and could see security almost at the landing. He knew he’d get caught eventually, but he didn’t want it to be there on the stairwell.
He let go of the door.
He ran forward and jumped up to the railing of the steps above him. There wasn’t much room to fly, but he was going to try.
He sprung off it and flapped up for a moment to the next level where he sprung up again. Now the stairwell echoed with the sound of his wings, beating the cold, stiff air.
Up he went, springing and flying, all the way to the top. He got ahead of security. And this time, when he came to the last landing, he skipped it and sprung up the ladder to the roof hatch.
Unlike it did from the outside, this one opened from the inside and he pulled himself though. He closed it behind him.
After being in the dark he couldn’t see a thing in the sunlight. He was on the top of the tower, and it was shaped just like the other one. So at least blinking and shading his eyes he could tell where he was.
He ran over and stooped down to fling himself over the edge and break through the window below.
But he stopped. It hit him that he might not be able to break through. And he had absolutely nothing on him to use to break it.
He thought he might just have to dive through again. He was already breathing fast, and he knew a second dive would take a lot out of him.
He looked back when he could hear shouts coming from below the hatch. They were close, and he had stalled too long.
He stood up. He could feel sticky sweat beading down his face. He flew off the roof, spiraling up to the sky like he had done before. But he didn’t go quite as far; he already knew how hard he would hit through the glass.
He swung around and made a quick, curved dived.
He turned into a ball right before he hit the glass, barely in time; he almost went headfirst. And his head already started throbbing when he heard the glass explode around him.
He shot through and knocked against a desk. A sharp pain flew up his arm and he came to an abrupt stop and slammed hard into the floor.
He rolled out, grimacing. His knees burned from hitting the floor. Strangely, he didn’t hear much noise around him, only murmurings. He looked up.
He had broken into an office. The door was open. There were people crowding outside, and some inside. They were all looking down at him, and the broken glass scattered on the carpet. The breeze was ruffling the papers on the desk.
The man standing in front, in slacks and a white button up, pulled out his com.
“We have the intruder in Office 46,” he said.
“Do not engage him and lock him in,” a voice answered from the other end.
“He broke through the window,” the man returned.
“Then hold him there, we’re on our way up.”
Elijah propped himself up on his elbows; it bent his feathers against the floor. The break through the glass had knocked the breath out of him, but he knew he had to do something. Something quick. Before security promptly escorted him out.
“Who’s you chief? That’s what I came for,” he said. He knew from anyone else that would make them look insane. But from the looks of the people standing in the doorway, they were wary for another reason.
The fact that he could fly.
He started to stand up. Then he heard footsteps pounding down the hall.