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Short Snippet Saturday: A Disturbing Discovery

Today it's time for another protagonist snippet. The situation that this snippet showcases is a new addition to my current draft of Fate's Apology. I found it not only added more chaos to Rey and Nala's immediate situation, but also opened up an opportunity to create more conflict between them within an important theme of the story.

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            Together they sprinted to the Hanora, dodging migs fleeing in the opposite direction. Lights strobed and the grinding of mechanisms deep within the walls rumbled around them.
            Entering the hold, Nala flipped the magnelifts to Rey. He lifted the heavy panel. Nala crouched at the edge of the dark pit, then recoiled as it exhaled a reek of sweat and urine.
             "What's wrong?" Rey asked, anxiously watching the loading ramp for unwanted company.
             "There are people in there!" she sputtered. She peered into the pit. Eyes gazed at her from mouthless faces. She looked closer and noted dusky skin, hand-woven fabric, and thick braids tied with leather thongs. "Tendarans!" she cried, realizing the mouthless appearance was caused by swatches of tape crisscrossing their lips.
            Rey flung the magnelifts down the ramp, then moved around to the open end of the panel and looked inside. "Oh, no," he said. A door slammed, jerking his attention to the hatch. Footsteps approached from within the craft, the noise doubled by a similar march in the docking bay. "Get in there!" he hissed.
            "But—"
            "Nala, it's now or never!"