Memories (Completed)
Author: Jewel Heart

Chapter 14
14

The next three class periods went smoothly. I talked to Mr. Styles and actually managed to confuse him into having him teach me how to draw the following week. Then I really puzzled him and got him to agree for me to start teaching Claire two weeks from now. James and Viv later escorted me to biology and then retreated. James had looked sad and agitated as he left. He was looking around the hallway, like he was in a horror movie at the climax, only that he knew that something was about to pop out at any second and kill him. There in third period, Brooke asked questions, as expected, about what happened after she was taken home yesterday. I told her the truth…mostly. I said that we had a regular dinner, carefully emphasizing the word, and said that nothing happened. That he asked me out and that I said yes. Only that that brought on a whole new round of questions and excitement. When she finished talking, I made sure to set up a new date for the Claire-mud-out plan. She hadn't argued. She was way too excited about my new boyfriend.  When the bell rang James and Max came to take me to Spanish and there Max took a seat behind me and James. Girls had been all over both James and Max today as well, but I didn’t let my self-control slip, no matter how much I wanted to punch and bite them. One of the reasons that I didn’t lose control was that James was paying more attention to me than his fans, as if he were oblivious to their presence. And Max looked to be more wary than flirtatious.

We were at lunch now. I was quietly watching as Viv, Scarlett, Jeff, and Max ate their lunches while having a “normal” conversation. They were talking about wards and patrol. How they were going to set up the wards, where they would be placed, who would check them, and who would make sure that the area was safe. It was impressive how they could talk this casually, knowing that there were hundreds of eyes staring at them—from a distance. There seemed to be something about them that scared the rest of the student body. Not that I could blame them, either.

They were all beautiful. In a scary way. Their beauty was inhuman. Inhuman. That was the best word to describe it. And it was true, too. I had imagined for some of the Moon People to be scary. But so far, none of those had come along and I was beginning to doubt that they ever would.

Maybe our classmates were keeping their distance because of me. That was another possibility. I was used to it, but I wasn’t sure about James and the rest of the crew. They seemed adapted, but I had only known them so long. I didn’t know how they felt, what they liked, what they hated—I barely knew their names! And they were a little more of a mystery than James. I knew him through the lives he used to find me in, but I didn’t know if he was just faking it or actually was all he said he was. Max and the rest of them on the other hand were a complete mystery. I’d met Max and Jeff once or twice, and Andrew three or four times, but I’d always been more concentrated on James and what he was saying. But either it was me and the danger that the student body had learned from experience that came from me, or the intimidating sensation that came from the new kids that just seemed to hang around the most unreachable girl in the state, they knew that there was something dangerous about them all. And they were smart enough to stay away.

The one thing that truly mystified me was that Brooke was sitting comfortably with us. She was the only human in the school sitting with a group of inhumanly beautiful, lethal monsters. Yet she was completely oblivious to anyone other than Andrew. And Andrew seemed to be giving her the same attention.

Oh, this would be gold against Andrew, if only she weren’t my best friend. No. It’s blackmail for her as well. If she can get passed the bloodsucking, that is. But it’s gross to see her with Andrew. She deserves better than a leech whose only interest is to drain her of all her blood. And frankly, I wasn’t going to let that happen. Andrew would have to get passed me before he could get to Brooke. If there’s one thing he can be sure of, it’s that I don’t hesitate when it comes to my best friend.

I was still thinking about what happened in first period. I thought that I was prepared, after years of knowing, but it turned out that I was incorrect. After years of denying him and other guys who like me because of my looks, I thought that if there was one person in this world that I wouldn’t freak out for saying those two little, yet very big, words, it was Demetrius. I had never been more wrong in my life. Maybe even lives.

“Lumex. Eat,” James said, pushing his tray of untouched food towards me.

I shook my head. “I think that I'm still digesting the lobster/cardboard your sisters cooked yesterday.”

He grinned. Still, he pushed the tray towards me. I left it there without even looking. I was watching Brooke closely. There was something about her—about her appearance—that threw me off. What could it be?

“Hey. Violet,” I said to the supermodel that had been listening and glancing around the space every now and then. She looked at me without dragging her eyes away from whatever she was staring at. “Why are they so comfortable?” I said, motioning to Max and the rest of them. “There’s a human here.”

“Scar put a spell on your friend um—Brooke—so that she doesn’t hear anything that she isn’t supposed to. But, it’ll wear off by the time lunch is over,” she said. She shrugged and then turned her head to look at the other side of the courtyard.

I chewed on my lower lip and looked at Brooke again. I stared so hard that it hurt. I couldn’t figure out the difference. I felt movement coming from behind me and smelled something like pizza. I stopped staring. I looked around the table that had suddenly hushed.

It was as if alarms had been set off. Everyone in the table, other than Brooke and me, turned their heads to look at the trespasser. Violet and James had shifted into a fighting stance, looking as if they were about to spring like a kangaroo at any minute.

I didn’t look. I didn’t feel like getting involved in whatever was going on. After two aggravating seconds, James mumbled something and everyone relaxed and got back to what they were doing. I noticed that now they were all looking around the room vigilantly while talking. They were ready for danger. Viv and Scarlett looked a little flushed. Like they were embarrassed that they hadn't been paying close attention to their surroundings like Violet had.

“What I really can't understand,” I continued, “is why Andrew seems so…interested in her. I mean, coming from Brooke, sure, a handsome guy, she’s all over him, but Andrew?”

Violet tore her gaze away from the large oak tree that she was staring at, and looked over at Andrew and Brooke, who had gone back to their conversation. She looked at me directly in the eye and shrugged. Her eyes moved up and over to look behind me at who knows what. I had a burning curiosity that almost brought me to turn around and look. But I was more in control of my temptations—stronger—and resisted the impulse that would only reveal a regular part of the courtyard.

“Hey,” I joked, looking up at James, “do you think that he’ll react if I poke him?”

James chuckled. I could feel the cloth of his shirt brush my arm as his chest moved. It left goose bumps wherever the silky cloth touched. I had to admit that I was a little disappointed that Andrew didn’t react to what I said.

“James,” Viv called for James’s attention. We looked at her. “Sharks or Eagles?”

I tried to process that, but couldn’t.

He frowned and narrowed his eyes. “Can you do Fox?” James finally said.

Viv and Scarlett exchanged glances. Then they looked back at James and Viv hesitated while Scarlett shrugged.

“We can try,” Scarlett answered.

“What are you talking about?” I asked, looking back and forth between them, hoping that an answer would come from their expressions. The answer didn’t come that way.

They turned to look at me, realizing that I had no idea what they meant. They had been so casual, thinking that everybody knew what was going on. They would have to learn that I didn’t know everything about witchcraft or whatever they were talking about.

“Wards,” Jeff said.

Wards?” I asked, looking at him. “You’re kidding, right?”

They all gave me odd looks, as if I were the one talking crazy.

“No. Wards. Really,” Scarlett responded. Then she gave James a look that seemed to say, “You tell her, we’re busy.”

James set his elbows on the table and intertwined his fingers, making a rest for his chin. He placed his chin on his hands and looked at me with tedious gray eyes.

“There are all different kinds of wards,” he begun, “that each serve a different purpose of protection and/or surveillance. The Fox, as I just said, is meant to alert when danger comes and to mess with the intruder’s mind, so that they don’t remember what they were doing,” he explained. “I prefer that to the Eagle that can only do surveillance or to the Shark that only attacks.”

“Oh, well that makes perfect sense,” I said, trying to hide my sarcasm without much success. He pressed his lips together and watched me attentively.

I watched Brooke and Andrew from the corner of my eye. I really wanted to punch Andrew now. He was looking at Brooke hungrily. And every couple of minutes, he would lick his lips. The one thing that kept him alive at the moment was that he was grabbing on the side of the table to restrain himself. The cheap table, surprisingly, wasn’t crumbling under his grip. The form of his hand was probably carved into the plastic—and he’d be on his own for that one—but it wasn’t something that couldn’t be fixed.

I looked around the courtyard, making eye contact with a couple of juniors. They risked their lives by going on and staring, but I had other problems. I looked down at the tray of food and remembered what happened in first period. The scene played in front of my eyes like a movie on T.V. There had been something that had troubled me. Something Demetrius had said bothered me. I just didn’t know what part. I finally reached the part and winced.

I ran a hand through my hair and tried to figure it out. I went back to my Hravart life and fast-forwarded through it like a movie in a VCR. I couldn’t find anything. There wasn’t anything that helped me solve the puzzle. All I saw was my regular life, meeting James, and then dying from an animal attack.

I ran my hand through my hair again. Something dark caught my eye when I lifted my head. I looked over at a table and froze. I narrowed my eyes and watched him. He was sitting with the Barbies and by the looks of it, Claire was flirting.

“Hey, Jamie,” I said looking over at him. Viv and Scarlett had drawn something on a piece of paper that looked like a map with certain spots circled in red. James was studying it, pensively but he gave me his full attention when I called for him. “I’ll be right back.” I stood up, being careful not to look over at him.

“I’ll come with you,” he said, getting up.

I put a hand on his arm to stop him. “No. You just keep on doing whatever you were doing. I’ll only be gone a minute,” I assured him. “That thing you’re trying to protect me from, I don’t think that it’s very probable for it to attack in such a public place.”

He hesitated for a moment but finally agreed to it and sat down. I smiled appreciatively and got off of the metal stool. I hadn't expected that to work. I really hadn't.

I turned away from my table and made my way over towards the Barbie’s table. I could feel James’s eyes on me as I walked away from him and towards the people that I hated. When I was a few feet away from him I felt my body fail. I knew that it didn’t want to do this, and frankly neither did I, but I wasn’t going to get answers without asking questions. I forced my legs to work and stopped by the table, next to him.

“Can we talk?” I asked.

Demetrius raised an eyebrow and then looked down at his untouched tray of food embarrassed. Or that’s what it looked like anyway. Just when I thought he was going to deny, he looked at me and stood up.

“Of course,” he said. His voice was a mixture of grim, embarrassment, and a little regret. “Somewhere private?” he suggested.

I glanced over at Claire who was shaking with fury and smiled. She narrowed her eyes. I would have laughed if this wasn’t such a serious moment. The other Barbies were looking back and forth between Claire and me, anxious to see how their leader would put an end to this. Claire just sat there and trembled.

“Perfect.”

I followed him inside the building. He led the way until we reached the staircase. There he stopped and turned to look at me with an unreadable expression. I looked around, making sure that there was nobody to hear us.

“Well?” he said when I didn’t start. Apparently he didn’t care if people knew that he was a vampire.

“Well. What in the world were you talking about in first period?” I snapped. He shouldn’t be giving me any sort of attitude. He knew that that was dangerous for even him.

His expression changed. His eyebrows went up and his eyes widened in surprise. “What are you talking about, Lumex? I thought you knew.”

“I have an idea of what you were talking about,” I clarified. “I'm not one hundred percent sure of everything.”

“What aren't you sure of? You were the one who brought it up in the first place.”

“But you were the one that said something off topic.” I looked around the hallway and up the stairs, making sure that nobody was here. I couldn’t feel them either, so that was probably a good sign too. “You called me something and you called James something. I'm not sure what you meant by “The Savior,” if I'm not mistaken,” I said. “Your brother called it “The Animus Materia.””

“Oh,” Demetrius said simply. He frowned and leaned on the rail of the metal staircase. I waited. “It was originally supposed to be The Savior. That’s why.”

“But then, why do you know that and why does your brother know the other name?” I asked.

His expression relaxed and he shrugged. “Orion doesn’t know. Your Protector might not have told you, so, for your information, very few people know that you’re The Animus Materia. When you kept coming up from the dead to return to find your soul mate, people just created that name for you,” he said, dryly.

“For your information, he did tell me,” I snapped. I didn’t want him, of all people, talking like that about James. “But he didn’t tell me that you knew. So what’s the story there?” I leaned on the opposite poll.

“Some guy told me—and don’t ask who, because I really have no idea who it was. Some guy with brown hair and hostile, strangely colored eyes. That’s all I can tell you,” he said. “He was somewhere near Hravart when I met him.”

“I don’t really remember him. I know who you’re talking about, I do, but it’s sort of a blur. Though, I really don’t remember you being there.”

“I was a servant. I was fifteen years old, and my parents were there because there was unlimited blood and a roof to have over our heads.”

“I don’t remember.” I shook my head. “How old were you when you stopped aging?”

“Eighteen.”

He didn’t look eighteen. I hadn't even known him eighteen years, but who was I to judge? I was supposed to be over ten million years old and looked seventeen.

“But, how did you know that I was a born vampire?” he asked.

I forgot that he didn’t realize how observant I was. He didn’t know that I could tell the difference between a werewolf and a shape-shifter. Or a beautiful, ashen witch from a vampire

“I haven't met any made vampires in this life, but I did in one of my past lives. And there’s a difference between the two.”

“Really?”

“Yes. Made vampires have this animal look in their eyes, but born vampires have a more sophisticated and calm glare. It’s hard to explain. You must have seen at least one made vampire and noticed.”

“No. No I haven't. But when you put it that way, I suppose you’re right.” He blinked twice, expressing the same surprise that everyone had at the hospital yesterday. He recovered and cleared his throat. “Was that all you wanted to ask? Because your boyfriend could have explained it to you.”

“No. In fact, that’s not all!” I exclaimed. I was becoming more short-tempered than usual. I would have to figure out how to control it. I relaxed and said, “I also want to know what you did.” He looked puzzled. “I remember that you exclaimed ‘I couldn’t have!’” I watched as he slowly straightened up. He remembered and knew what I was talking about. And by the look on his face, I knew that it wasn’t something very good. “What was it that you did?”

He didn’t answer, instead his head turned to look at the corner. “There’s somebody coming,” he responded. I followed his gaze. It took me a couple of seconds to pick up the sound of footsteps. “And lunch is almost over.” He squared his shoulders and went up a step. “We’ll have to continue this conversation some other time.” He began making his way upstairs.

“Trust me. I won’t let you forget,” I said, walking away from the staircase. Before I could pass the first row of lockers, though, I turned halfway around and looked at Demetrius. “Oh, and, James is planning to do something with me for the next couple of days. You should visit every now and then if you’re so concerned about James hurting me.”

“I'm pretty sure that he wouldn’t allow it if I even came to give you a sweater because it was cold.”

I’m letting you. James doesn’t run my life.” He nodded with a faint smile and I walked away.

I turned the corner and saw Ms. Summers walking this way down the hall. I passed her and walked back towards the courtyard. James was talking about something on the map to Scarlett and Vivian—I could hear them even with about two hundred yards distance. When I turned a corner to get outside, someone stopped me.

“Move it or lose it,” I said, looking up at whoever stopped me.

“That’s kind of harsh, don’t you think?” Brian Jenkins said. Brian was the kind of guy that everyone believed would end up as an assassin in jail when he graduated from High School. He was the real bad boy of the school. But I didn’t care. Three years ago I’d proven my theory that even he was scared of me.

“Just hurry up and tell me what you want. I don’t have time to talk to losers,” I said.

Brian’s eyes narrowed and his head tilted. “You’re going out with the new kid, aren't you?”

I smiled and blinked in what was supposed to look cute. “Why does it matter to you?” I said, making my voice sound sweet.

He wet his lips and smiled. “Oh, come on. You know as well as I do that you deserve someone that has the same interests as you.”

I laughed humorlessly. “And what would you know about my interests?”

“I know everything about you, sweetie.” He took a step forward.

I stood my ground but my phony smile disappeared and I had to grit my teeth.

“The serial killer is coming onto me?” I said through my teeth. I was afraid that if I relaxed my jaw then I would end up punching and kicking before I got the chance to learn what he really wanted.

“You bet.”

“And what makes you think that I'm going to let you?” I crossed my arms over my chest and dug my nails into my arm so hard that I drew blood. It was a shame that this was my only way of resisting the impulse to beat him up. He was really playing with my temper. He was on dangerous waters just because of the topic he had chosen.

“You don’t have a choice.” His hand lifted from his black jeans’ pocket and he reached for my shoulder.

I evaded his grasp and swiftly grabbed his wrist. I pressed hard on a hidden pressure point in the wrist. “I don’t have time for you. I haven't had a very good day, so I recommend that if you want to keep your arm then you should just walk away,” I hissed.

“And I suggest that you give into what you know you want,” he challenged. I pressed harder. He winced but kept talking. “Just dump the new kid and come with me. You know that I'm the right choice.”

“A larva would be a better choice than you.”

That was when I made a big mistake. I let him go.

As soon as I released him, he grabbed my arms and held me in an iron grip. He smiled greedily and began pulling me towards him. I struggled in his grasp, but he was in complete control. Though the oddest thing to happen was when he grabbed me. His eyes had seemed to shift from a peacock blue to a dark orange-yellow and then back to blue.

I had to think fast. I was at a good distance to bite him, but knowing that I was a vampire scared me. If I bit him, fangs might grow from my teeth. I eyed the spot where we were standing. We were near the edge of the building and the closest living creatures were in the courtyard. That was pretty far away. Nobody would see us. I studied Brian. He was in a good position, as was I. There was a wall a couple of feet behind us which would only knock the breath out of me. I could recover from that. I knew what to do.

Brian pulled me closer and that was when I put my plan into action. Without a second thought I lifted my feet so that they were pressed against Brian’s stomach and kicked. He fell backwards, but there was a flaw in my plan. He didn’t let go.

I fell on top of him and the air was knocked out of him. I saw that a sharpened pencil had fallen out of his pocket and reached for it. I stretched my arm and was beginning to doubt that I could reach it in time. Brian had started struggling up with me in his arms. Yet it was his downfall. In one movement he made, I was able to grab the pencil and stab him in the hip. He gasped in pain, but didn’t release. I used all my force and stabbed him in the stomach. He finally let me go to clutch his stomach.

You have to kill him, Chloe’s sweet voice appeared in my mind. Use the pencil. This is your chance.

I'm not killing anyone! I yelled at her. Are you nuts? He’s just a teenager!

No he isn’t! You have to trust me! Aim the pencil at his heart!

NO!

I scrambled to my feet. I fell backwards when he grabbed my leg. Something caught me. Cold, strong arms that were hard and at the same time soft caught me. I tried to get away from whatever had stopped my fall.

It wouldn’t let me go and it had a better grip on me than Brian had had. I had dropped the pencil when I fell backwards and now didn’t even have a weapon. I sucked in my breath, preparing for a scream when it started talking to me.

“Lumex, relax. Lumex, don’t move. Come with me. Get behind me,” it said. “I'm here. I shouldn’t have let you go.”

I stopped struggling and looked up at it. I was breathing heavy and could barely get a word out. But when I looked into its eyes, I was able to get one and only one word out.

“James,” I breathed.

“I'm here. Get behind me,” he repeated, pushing me behind him and against a wall. His arms expanded slightly, as if to make an imaginary shield.

I was breathing heavily and clutching to James’s shirt like a child afraid of losing his parents at the fair. I was afraid. I was scared of Brian and I had no idea why. There was something about his presence at the moment that frightened me. There was something evil about his presence. And the way that his eyes shifted colors frightened me to the point of death. This had never happened before and I felt as if I were going to faint. If there was any time to be a delicate flower, this was it.

James and I watched as Max, Jeff and Violet tackled Brian down and restrained him. Violet was knocked to the floor and Max was kicked in the stomach, but they got him in the matter of seconds.

I noticed that Max was on the edge of sprouting a tail and growing hair everywhere and that Jeff’s face was beginning to look more and more like a gorilla’s and his fair complexion was a shade darker. Violet’s eyes were shining silver like a shiny new nickel and strands of dirty blonde hair were sticking to her forehead. Her lip was bleeding from when she’d been knocked down, but it quickly healed. I saw that near the corner, Andrew was watching to make sure that nobody came. And I knew that when and if somebody came, he’d either jump into action and stop them in their tracks, or give a red alert to James. Viv and Scarlett were arguing in hushed tones about something while Max, Jeff, and Violet did all the dirty work.

“I thought you checked the wards!” Scarlett exclaimed.

“I did! They were perfect! He shouldn’t have been able to get in!” Viv responded angrily. “I don’t know what happened!”

“Did you check all of them?”

“Yes! All twenty of them!”

“But then how did he get in?” Scarlett threw her hands in the air and her spring-like hair bounced.

“I don’t know!” Viv mirrored her motion. “They were all different and working fine! I double checked every single one and then triple checked the Frogs!”

The rest of them were having a completely different argument.

“Let me go, abominations!” Brian yelled.

Violet cupped her hand over his mouth to shut him up. “Look who’s talking,” she responded in her regular emotionless tone.

“Don’t just stand there and argue!” James barked at Viv and Scarlett. “Check him! I don’t want to have to kill someone without being sure that they’re the right guy!”

They looked at him startled and moved.

Viv crouched in front of Brian, stared into his color-shifting eyes and began talking to him. I could see the dim pink light start to revolve around her. “What’s your name? When were you born? What color are your eyes?” she asked. Brian just stared at her with a blank expression. Violet had removed her hand from Brian’s mouth, but he wasn’t saying anything.

Meanwhile, Scarlett was lifting Brian’s strawberry blonde bangs and examining his forehead. I could see a dim purplish-bluish light surrounding her. She dropped the bangs and moved behind him and checked his neck. She frowned and looked up at James.

“It’s not here,” she said.

“Well is the Print there?” James asked, taking a step forward. He froze and took a step backwards when he realized that I was still clutching at his shirt.

The Print, I had discovered, was a special mark in a victim’s body, which marked the family crest of the predator. Usually vampires would erase their trail, but sometimes they weren’t so cautious. And they were about the only creatures that could delete the mark without leaving a trace of what had been there.

My breathing had eased, but I was shaking violently now. I didn’t want him to leave my side. He made me feel safe, even if I was still completely terrified. My breathing sped up and my heart began racing as soon as he moved. I was filled with adrenaline and completely frozen at the moment. There were even tears in my eyes.

Scarlett moved around Jeff and Violet to Brian’s side and began examining his neck again. She looked beside her at Jeff for a second opinion. Jeff gave a sharp nod. She shifted slightly and picked up Brian’s hand which was limp and lifeless like a fallen strand of hair. She stood there, two finger pressed gently to Bran’s wrist for a while, and then, she turned ashen. Scarlett remained frozen for a minute and then finally looked back at James with grim eyes. She opened her mouth and a sound like a whimper came out.

“He’s drained,” was all she said.

James’s eyes widened in horror, his arms dropped, and he froze like a statue. I couldn’t hear him breathe his even breath any longer. At that moment, I knew that I didn’t want to know what being “drained” meant. I shook violently once more. That seemed to unfreeze James. It was like a bucket of cold water had been thrown at him to wake him up from a deep slumber.

“You don’t have to worry about killing him anymore,” Andrew said dryly from the corner.

Everyone but me ignored his comment.

That means that…Brian is dead? That was too much for me. My breathing sped up even more and I was on the edge of hysteria. I was still shaking uncontrollably, but now it was so bad that it was as if I were rocking at the speed of light. Everything I saw was a blur and gray dots danced in front of my eyes. My legs seemed to turn into toothpicks under me and I fell to the floor. I was still holding onto James’s shirt. It was amazing that it hadn't ripped yet. I felt like throwing up and I was cold. It was like I was hugging a large piece of ice and being stuck there, because I couldn’t move either. I forgot how to breathe and began gasping for air.

I was going through a mental breakdown. This was the real world. This was my world. All of this was happening because of me. People were dying because whoever was doing this needed to get to the target. This was going to keep happening because he couldn’t get to me.

Oh, God. That report on CNN. Those dead children. It wasn’t a blood trade. People weren’t stealing blood to sell. They had all been drained. He had done it. He had killed them. Just like Brian. They had all died because of me. The bodies of those kids on CNN had probably failed and that was why they were just left there. They were supposed to get to me. And that poor elementary schoolgirl had been used to get to me too. This was going to keep happening until someone won. People were going to keep getting slaughtered. They were going to die in the worst way possible. Like animals. They were going to be exterminated like insignificant insects that were part of an infestation in a building. There were going to be more and more funerals. Half the city could be depleted for all they cared!

Viv moved and I was able to get a full view of Brian’s face. He was paler than James and—oh, my God! His eyes were back to blue. It wasn’t Brian’s usual peacock blue, or even his orange-yellow colored eyes, though. There was no light in them and they were a frightening ice blue, almost white. I watched horrified as they rolled to the back of his head. Dark, bruise-like circles were under his eyes and there was a drop of blood rolling down his eye like a tear. A vein seemed to have popped in his neck and it was colored a mixture of purple, blue, and red. Blood began flowing out his mouth. His head dropped and a gurgling noise was coming from him. The blood from his mouth dripped and stained his white shirt and black jeans. His strawberry blonde hair was bloodstained at the crown of his head and it was beginning to bleed. The wound was getting deeper. The blood just kept flowing out like the liquid from a soda bottle that was turned upside down with its cap off. Soon enough every strand of blonde hair was blood-spattered. I could smell it from here. My stomach twisted even more and I could feel the barf in my dry throat. Something had hit him in the head and that was probably how he had died. It was either that or this happened to every person that was drained.

That was it. CNN hadn't shown any pictures or videos of the dead children. It had been too traumatizing. This sight would have probably made an adult pee his pants. It was worse than any horror movie ever made. Nothing could compare to this. Nothing could captivate stuff like this. Nothing could show you the reality of life. Of what could really happen to you. And nothing could ever captivate the essence of death. Of seeing it happen with your own eyes to somebody you knew. There were just some things in life that you couldn’t explain in words. This was one of those things.

“What do we do, James?” Jeff asked, looking up from Brian’s motionless body. There was a more serious matter to attend to. I could wait.

They were all looking at James—even Andrew had looked away from his post—with grim eyes. They were waiting for their next instructions, but I had a feeling that James didn’t really know what to do next.

Finally he answered, “Scream.”


 

 

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