Meera took a deep breath before answering Paulo.
"Yeah. My turn," she said, then followed Rosemary inside. Her friend had finished speaking and exited the building, leaving Meera alone with the bodies. She had no idea what she planned to say to the camera, alone in the dark, where no one else could hear. No idea what she could say to make it better.
She stood silent for a time, thinking.
There was nothing. Even if she'd been the most skilled orator, nothing could make up for the loss of Becca and Joey's lives. She hadn't really known either of them long, but no human being deserved to die a pointless death on the island like this. Becca had been shot needlessly, and Joey had died in a futile escape attempt.
It was pointless, thought Meera bitterly. Their entire plan, the idea they could subvert the system somehow, was pointless. Escape was impossible, and the collars couldn't be removed. To try again would be suicidal. There was no way their small group could beat the terrorists at their game, and it would accomplish nothing but a pile of bodies.
She realized her heart had sped up, and was hammering against her chest. She felt like a cornered animal, trapped in on all sides by the players of this deadly game.
I'm not going to survive.
Meera's hand moved to her pocket, and she drew Joey's curved knife. It gleamed with silver and deadly light. She turned and looked directly into the camera, wondering even if she should say anything at all. She wondered if the terrorists, or people back home, were watching her right now.
She felt as though Joey had been telling her to survive with his last breath. Telling all of them to live. If she died now, then his death was all in vain.
But there's no way to escape, she thought. The terrorists are too good, we're just a bunch of highschoolers. We never had a chance. It's play by their rules, or die.
She didn't want to play by their rules. She didn't want to die.
Find another way, Joey had said.
"There is no other way," Meera said, quietly.
The camera stared back at her, and she felt in that moment its lens was peering into her soul. Almost like it knew what she would do.
"Guys, I'm sorry," said Meera, speaking, for what it was worth, to Becca and Joey. "We couldn't get to Becca in time, so she died. And Joey lost his life in a hopeless escape plan. We were trying to beat the system, and it didn't work like we thought it would. Even if I didn't cut the collar, I'm just as guilty for not interfering. I killed him by saying nothing.
"But I'm not going to die. You died for us and because of our plan, Joey, and told us to find another way to live. And for what it's worth, I'm going to find one, or die trying. No matter what it takes."
Meera wanted to leave it at that, before she got too annoyed with herself for turning what was meant to be a eulogy for Joey and Becca into some kind of declaration for herself. But she felt she had to add one more thing before she left, since for all she knew this would be her last chance to speak to the camera directly.
"Mom, Dad, Amir, Brian, Mel, I'm sorry. For what I've done, and what I'm going to do. If I don't survive this, then I went down fighting. I love you all."
Meera waited for a time there in silence. It felt appropriate, to give one final honor to the dead. The crushing guilt she felt at the way their plan had failed threatened to overwhelm her as she thought of Joey, but she quickly turned away from the camera. She wasn't going to let them see her cry. She had to look strong. Stronger then she felt.
Making sure she was dry-eyed, Meera took several deep breaths. Then she walked out of the building, to where Paulo and Rosemary were waiting.
"Ready," she said.