Replication

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Chapter 12

For a few moments, we all stare at the leaking window, transfixed in a state of both shock and horror. Although the crack is pretty small, it is still significant enough, due to the fact that a narrow jet of water is rapidly streaming into the room.

What the hell are we going to do...

I feel nauseous.

“You fucking idiot...” Ian murmurs, fury radiating in his voice.

Before Ian can run over and punch/attack/kill Hal, Hal instantly scurries out of the room, racing out into the hallway.

“COME BACK HERE YOU COWARD!” Ian roars.

But it’s too late. Hal is gone.

Ian stops in the doorway, panting heavily. I can see his body literally quaking with rage. He then slowly turns around, facing me, a grim look on his face.

“We’re going to die,” he murmurs.

I swallow hard and look down at the floor, trembling with fear. The only sounds are the low hum of the submarine and the splashing of the water as it continues to stream through the crack. I wish there was something I could say, something to comfort him. But there’s not.

We both stand there for a few moments, our hearts pounding in our chests. I finally look up from the ground and lock my eyes with his. His dark eyes penetrate into mine, and in those few moments, time seems to slow down.

I wonder what he is thinking. Is he thinking about the water streaming into the submarine? Or is he thinking about the video that he just saw of Tristan and I...

I really hope he isn’t thinking about the second option.

When I am unable to bear his penetrating gaze any longer, I suddenly say,

“There’s got to be a way to stop the water from coming in.”

Ian continues to stare at me silently, then shakes his head slowly.

“No,” is all that he mutters.

“No. There has to be a way. We have to try to stop it,” I say, my voice trembling.

Ian shakes his head again, and I am filled with an unexpected wave of anger.

“So you just want to sit here, do nothing and wait to die without even trying to fix the problem?!” I exclaim incredulously, throwing my arms up in the air.

Nonetheless, as if a stone statue, he continues to stare at me with that stolid, emotionless expression painted on his face.

“Fine, you do whatever you want. But I’m going to try to get us out of this,” I say, then begin to walk toward the door.

There is only person I can think of that may be of some help in this situation. And his name is Tristan.

Just as I am about to step out the doorway I feel a hand roughly grab me by my shoulder. I whirl around, looking Ian right in the face.

“What do you want?” I ask warily.

He still hasn’t loosened his iron-like grip. I wince in pain as his fingers dig into my shoulder.

“Where are you going?” he asks bluntly.

“To get help,” I reply quickly, trying to turn around and walk away.

But he doesn’t let me. Instead, he reaches out his other arm and grabs my other shoulder, spinning me around so that I am forced to face him again.

“From who?” he asks slowly.

I stare up at him, and judging by the look on his face, I think he knows exactly who I’m going to get.

“You know who,” I reply, and before he can say or do anything else, I wrench myself free from his grip and hurry out into the hallway.

I run down the hall as fast as I can, my feet clanging on the metal floor and my heart pounding in my chest. After veering around the corner, I enter the hallway of our dormitories. Some of the kids are sitting in the hall, and they all look up at me as I arrive, panting breathlessly. When Nicki sees me, she instantly stands up and rushes over, a concerned look on her face.

“What’s going on? Some of us thought we heard a gunshot, but we weren’t sure and...”

Before she can continue, I abruptly cut her off.

“Where’s Tristan?”

“He’s in his room I think. But Tessa, can you please tell us what’s going on?” Nicki asks.

Without a word, I push past Nicki and walk toward the door of Tristan’s and my room. Even though I feel terrible not telling her, something inside of me is telling me not to tell everyone what happened yet. I can’t even imagine the chaos and pandemonium that would erupt if everyone found out that water was leaking into the submarine.

I quickly twist the knob and push the door open. Tristan is laying on the bottom bunk bed, and immediately sits up when he sees me in the doorway.

“Tessa, what happened to you? Are you okay?” he asks worriedly, standing up and walking towards me.

I swallow hard, then reply,

“We need your help. Now.”

“With what?” he asks, a look of both confusion and concern on his face.

It’s too much to explain.

“Just come with me,” I say, then turn around and begin walking back down the hallway.

Tristan follows, having to jog to keep up with my brisk, hurried walk.

“Tess, can you just please tell me what is going on?” he asks as we turn the corner.

I shake my head, then say,

“You’ll see.”

Within moments we arrive in the control room. Ian is still standing the same spot that he was before, his hands in his pockets and his back up against the wall. When he sees Tristan, his emotionless expression turns into one of a scowl. I can’t believe he is being so bitter and jealous in such a dire situation like this.

It only takes Tristan one second to see the water, which is still steadily streaming into the room.

“Oh no...” he murmurs under his breath, taking a slow step forward.

“How the hell did this happen?” he then asks, glancing at Ian and I.

When Ian doesn’t respond, I quickly explain to him everything that happened. However, I don’t mention the part about Hal showing the clip of him and I kissing to Ian. Now is definitely not the right time to open that can of worms.

It takes a few moments for Tristan to complete process everything. He stares at the hole, appearing as if in a state of deep concentration.

“Well where did Hal go?” he finally asks.

“He ran away somewhere and disappeared. I have no clue where he went,” I explain.

“Coward,” Tristan mutters. under

“Well, do you have any ideas to stop the water from coming in?” I ask desperately.

This whole time, Ian has stayed in the same spot, staring at us intensely. I’m too busy to deal with him right now, but I have a feeling that if I looked at him, there would be daggers shooting from his eyes.

“I do have an idea. But we need a material to cover the hole, like a tarp or something. And we also need something to secure it in place. I don’t think we’ll be able to find those things here, though,” Tristan says dejectedly.

“Well, it’s worth a shot to look,” I say, then walk towards one of desks and open the drawers.

I frantically rummage through each drawer, tossing out pencils, paper, maps and other junk. So far, there is nothing of use. Tristan goes to one of the others desks and begins to do the same. Halfway through searching through a desk, Tristan looks up at Ian and exclaims,

“Could you help us out instead of just standing there?”

Yep, I was right. The daggers radiating out of Ian’s eyes are so sharp that I can’t even look. I quickly look down and open up another drawer.

And that’s when I find it.

“How about this?!” I exclaim excitedly, unfolding some sort of tarp-like sheet.

Tristan looks up and rushes over to me, grabbing the sheet. He examines it, then grins.

“It’s perfect Tessa,” he says.

And then, before I can stop him, he does something that makes my heart stop.

He kisses me on the lips.

Right in front of Ian.

When I realize what he’s done, I quickly break away. But it’s too late.

Ian has already begun to advance toward us. Mark my words, I have never, ever seen him look this enraged before.

“Ian, please...” I start.

But before I can even attempt to finish my sentence, Ian’s fist swings up in the air and violently crashes itself right into Tristan’s face.

Hard.

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