The Hidden Truth (Book 1 of The Hidden Truth Series)

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Through The Forest

I woke up to a Shayne staring at me. Of course I go to smirk since I caught him and he still doesn’t know that I know that he is staring at me. I say something smart to him, however, he doesn’t respond. I continue to call his name and I even sat up waving my hand in front of his face nothing. Are you serious? What can be occupying his mind so much that he is completely in a trance. I try calling his name once more and he finally snaps out of it. He asks me what happened and I told him nothing that he was just zoned out.

He confirms my suspicion that he was thinking, however, he didn’t tell me about what so I decided to ask him. He looks at me with a raised eyebrow as if wondering why I was curious or a distraction to figure out what to tell me instead of the truth, however, what he said surprised me.

“Obviously you.”

He whispers. Obviously not meaning for me to hear it, but I did and I couldn't fight the blush escaping to my cheeks. I tried to keep my head down and look at him through my lashes so he didn’t notice but that didn’t work. He realized why I was blushing and then started to blush too. I decided to have some fun with this.

"Oh really? What about me?"

I say a little flirtatious. He just ends up nodding his head blushing more. He then tells me how it was just about how he wished I didn’t have to go through the pain I’m actually going through right now. Here I thought it was going to be something big and juicy, but it’s just him thinking about me in a guilty fashion. Nodding my head I start to wiggle my way out of his grip and get out.

I feel him start to grip me harder and ask me where I was going. Reminding him that we are here for a mission I tell him that I was going to start walking again and that he should follow me or he will be left in the woods. I told him how I expect to get to my moms house tonight if we start walking now. While getting up I dust all the dirt off of me and look at Shayne who is still laying on the ground. I give him a strange look and he starts to complain how I ruined his comfortable self.

Comfortable? We slept on the ground.

I decided to ask him how he was comfortable while he was getting up. He gets up the same way I did and immediately starts to clean the dirt off of him. Of course he had more than I did since I was practically laying on him and he was laying on the cold hard ground. I can see he was trying to stretch while brushing the dirt off him. I shake my head and start to turn, however I feel this sharp pain in my shoulder as if someone just stabbed me there. Unable to take the pain I fall to the ground.

"It was comfortable with you..."

Shayne says but I don’t quite hear him since I was on the floor in pain. It’s just like my episodes except the pain is only in my shoulder. It now feels as if someone is holding my shoulder and pressing down on it to cause more pain. I hear Shayne ask me what happened but I couldn’t find myself to answer him. Not only because I’m in pain, but I could also barely hear him. Someone was right next to me whispering stuff in my ear about how the closer I get the worst they will make me suffer.

I slightly turn my head towards the voice and where a person should be. Key word should be, however, there is no one right next to me. Shaking my head I let out a small groan at the pain. When the voices came back to me.

“Just give up Estrella. The more you fight it the more pain I will cause you. Just give up.”

“No”

“Then so be it. Dormiatis dum castellum super nubes ascendat.”

Was the last thing I heard before everything went black.

I woke up on the floor of the forest with no one surrounding me. Where is Shayne? Did he continue without me because I fell asleep? Maybe he wandered over here? I tell myself while walking towards a clearing. When I get there I see Shayne but he isn’t alone. There is this girl. She seems very familiar. Wait it’s the same girl from the elevator! How did she find us? I slowly make my way towards the two being as quiet as possible to try and listen to what they are talking about.

I couldn’t hear anything and it was getting very upsetting, Getting closer I accidentally step on a twig, which snaps loudly. Both Shayne and the lady turn towards me and the lady disappears and Shayne walks towards me.

“Good you’re awake lets continue.”

“Shayne who was that?”

“No one of your concern at least not yet.”

Shayne snaps at me and I tense up. Shayne has never snapped at me this is…. something is wrong. Asking Shayne if he was okay he tells me that he was never better. I look at him with a questioning and accusing look and he sighs. Stopping and turning in front of me Shayne starts to rub my arms.

“Estrella I’m okay, there is nothing you need to worry about I’m just stressed over this trip I’m sure you can relate.”

He tells me and I nod showing him that I believe him, except I don’t I’m even more suspicious. Shayne never calls me from my first name he knows that I hate it and doesn’t call me it because of that. Shayne sighs happily that I’m giving it a rest. He then leans down and kisses my cheek. I feel a sort of tingling sensation there and I just look at him. His hazel eyes have now become a deep shade of red. I look at him wide eyed and see that his hand is starting to glow.

“Shayne what is going on?”

“This is the real me Estrella. Do you still love me?”

Love him? This has to be one of my dream things. Shake my head saying no and I feel his grip on my arms tighten. He is angry. Next thing I know he is yelling something in Latin and I feel myself slip out of consciousness or technically back into it.

"What happened?"

Is the first thing to come out of Shayne’s mouth once I come back to reality. I just look at him and tell him that it was one of my weird passing out into a dream thing. He nods and asks me what was it about. Shaking my head at him I just put my hand on his chest.

“I don’t really want to talk or relive it at the moment I’m sorry.”

He assures me to not worry that I don’t have to tell him every one if I don’t want to. Nodding my head I feel my cheek start to tingle like it did in the dream. Bringing my hand to my cheek I tell Shayne that it has a tingly sensation and if that was normal or if it is something that has to do with me and my passing out. I look over at him to see him looking down with a small smile. He then shakes his head saying he has no idea. Not believing him I’m about to press on it when he looks up at me. My eyes find his and I see that they are their normal hazel color. Which reminds me of one part of my dream. Where he told me that the guy with the red eyes and glowing hands was the real him.

I know that isn’t really him, but I still don’t know anything of his past or his relationship with his parents and he knows pretty much everything I know about myself. Looking at him I decided to ask.

“Shayne?”

“Yes?”

“Would you consider us close?”

“Well yea I guess why?”

“Close enough for you to finally open up to me?”

I ask and he tenses looking straight in my eyes. I know though he is in a trance and is wondering whether or not to tell me. Instead of answering me verbally he answers me physically by standing up and getting his stuff together getting ready to continue our journey. I shake my head and follow suit until I’m standing next to him.

“Sorry I never asked. Okay just forget it.”

I tell him except he shakes his head and grabs my hand.

“Don’t. I’m ready to open up to you, but its pretty complicated so lets walk while I tell you so we don’t loose anymore daylight.”

He tells me and I nod. We start to walk and get a couple feet away from where we were until he starts to tell me. He starts small on how he and his parents argue all day and every night. How they cant go one day without getting into some kind of argument, even if its over something simple like what to eat for dinner. He said that ever since he was a child that he couldn’t wait until he turned 18, so he could leave. He then goes on about telling me how he never fit in with the family since he was adopted.

“You were adopted?”

“You’re not the only one who doesn’t know their parents, which is why I also wanted to help you. I know how it feels to want to know your real parents.”

And there it was the reason why he didn’t want to talk about his parents, not only because they didn’t get along, but also because they weren’t actually his. I stop my walking pace and look at him. I know he can see the sadness in my eyes because I can feel them running down my cheeks. He walks over to me and raises his thumbs to my cheeks, slowly wiping the tears from my eyes.

“Oh Shayne I’m so sorry I didn’t know.”

“Don’t be sorry I didn’t tell you. Besides I’m glad my parents aren’t my real parents because it lead me to you.”

“What do you mean?”

I ask him and he just looks down running a hand through his hair. I take that hand and hold it in mine. When I look up at him he just gives me a small smile.

“It wasn’t a coincidence that I ended up at your orphanage. You asked me that I really traveled all the way from New York to Miami well it wasn’t because I randomly found this place for more volunteer hours. This is actually where I’m from. Where I was adopted from.”

Adopted from? Shayne lived at the orphanage? I look at him and try to remember his face when it all come back to me. He was the boy. The boy whose parents came back for him. I never knew his name or really talked to him the two years he was there. He was best friends with Luke and then left him. This is all a shock to me. That’s why he knew the name of the orphanage. That’s why he traveled all the way from New York to Miami. He was hoping to find out his past as well. That’s why he found me that night in Mrs. Taylor’s room. It wasn’t because he heard a noise in the night. It was because he was actually trying to sneak into her office as well.

To find out his past in his file. This was all his plan to finding his past. That is why he didn’t think I was crazy to want to go on this crazy adventure to find my mother because he had down the same thing. That is why he was so understanding and willing to come with me, but did he ever find out who his parents were? This is why he was always so tense around the mentioning of his parents; maybe it is also because he actually hasn’t found out anything about his parents as well. Me taking him on this journey is stopping him from reaching his past.

“Alice are you okay you haven’t said anything?”

“I’m fine it just it’s a lot to take in. You used to live with us. You were Luke’s best friend and you were the only one of us to ever get adopted and into a terrible family at that. I feel so bad, but thinking more about it it all makes sense. You finding this place. You finding me that night in Mrs. Taylor’s office. You feeling so comfortable staying here even though this is so far from your family.”

He doesn’t say anything back, but instead just nods and we continue to walk. I start to think of everything that happened in my life. They say everything happens for a reason. Me ending up at that specific orphanage that so happens to have kept my partner in crime over here. Then him coming back to us after being adopted to try and find his past, but instead of finding his own here he is helping me to find my own. I got so lost in thought that when Shayne said something to me it startled me and I ended up tripping on a tree root.

He catches me before I fall and I just look up at him. I know my face must look completely flustered and embarrassed. He just looks down at me and smiles. Bringing me back up to stand on my feet he keeps his hold on me making sure I am steady. I start to wave him off and take another step when I feel a pain in my ankle.

“You okay?”

I nod and try to walk again which makes me groan and fall to the ground. Shayne comes rushing over to me and helps me to try and sit on a tree log. I shake my head telling him that I’m fine and that we needed to keep walking that we were loosing daylight. Therefore I tried to stand up again and walk. Shayne grabs a hold of me and looks me in the eyes.

"Come on, you need to sit down. We can stay another night that is not a problem. Your ankle right now is a problem."

I sat down nodding at him. He helps me to sit down and sits next to me to make sure that I stay seated. I just shake my head at him and nudge him telling him thank you. He tells me not to worry about it then goes to inspect my ankle. There is no use. Nothing around here can help fix my ankle and I can tell Shayne is starting to figure that out. He looks at me and then back to my ankle before touching it.

“OW!”

I ended up screaming and he continues to apologize over and over for it. I just wave my hand at him telling him that it just shocked me and it only hurt a little bit. That I was able to walk on it and that we should be going. He just shakes his head at me.

“Alice just focus on your ankle getting better.”

He tells me and I nod. Looking at my ankle I start to focus on it. Maybe if I wish it hard enough my ankle will heal it self and then we can continue to walk. I just keep staring at it and slightly repeating heal and praying that it does, but of course that is nonsense. I need medical attention and we are not leaving unless Shayne carries me the rest of the way. Hey that is not a bad idea.

“Hey Shayne maybe you can carry me the rest of the way”

“That is not necessary your ankle is better?”

“What makes you say that?”

“Just the fact that have been holding it and you haven’t yelped in pain at all.”

He tells me and I look to see that my ankle is indeed in his hand and I don’t feel a thing. Looking at him wide eyed I yank my ankle away from him and inspect it. Nothing hurts it doesn’t look swollen. It’s like it never even happened. Shayne starts to question what I did but I just shake my head telling him I did nothing but what he told me to do. Focused on my ankle getting better and it did.

“Wow, well then you’re a healer! Shall we celebrate by getting back to our mission?”

“Yes we shall.”

He nods and helps me up. I stand on my ankle and see once again no pain. Whatever, we continue to walk and talk. Our conversation consists of random topics and sometimes more games of 20 questions. We officially know everything about each other down to the last time each of us cried. It was nice to just walk and talk with nothing bothering us and freaking us out. Looking up I start to see the sun setting. It’s getting late and maybe we should stop. I was about to tell Shayne when I heard the trees rustle behind me.

Turning around I look to see if I see anything. Nothing, but trees. We have wandered really far into the forest, which not only makes me happy about it because we are closer to my mom. It also makes me quite scared that we ventured so far into the forest. It also scares me since I don’t know what’s in this forest and for all we know there could be wolves or bears.

I hear another sound but this time it is closer. I tell Shayne what I hear and he just brushes it off saying that it is probably just the wind. However, I hear it again and it is right behind me. Trying to play it off that it was the wind I keep walking, but I hear it again. Not only that I felt whatever it is touch me.

"Sh-Shayne, I don't think that's just the wind. It feels like someone's following us."

Shayne looks around us and then stops when his gaze lands on me. He gives me a small smile and grabs my arms. Slowly rubbing his hand up and down them. He starts to speak soothing words to me telling me that there is no one near us and that we should keep walking. Nodding my head I continue to follow after him, but a few steps behind him.

Looking around I don’t see anything, but I fell it. Something is right behind me but I know as soon as I turn around that thing will be gone, so I decided to talk to it under my breath and see if there is something following us.

“Who are you?”

I ask and get no response but I can feel someone breathing on my neck. I ask the question again this time a little louder. Enough for whatever it is to hear me but still quiet enough so Shayne doesn’t. However, it wasn’t until I asked what that person wanted was when I heard them as clear as day.

“Your life”

Letting out a small gasp I turn quickly towards the thing and into its piercing red eyes. I couldn’t look away as if it was capturing me under its spell and not wanting to let me go.

“I want your life, but not yet. So until then Dormiatis dum castellum super nubes ascendat.”

The thing says to me and I feel a sharp pain course through my body. Roaming every part of me until I feel it reach my heart. Next thing I know there is another sharp pain and I let out a scream.

"ALICE!"

I turn towards the person who screamed my name. Turning towards them the last thing I saw was those two piercing hazel eyes before everything once again went black.


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