Restored

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Chapter 3

Regina.”

Standing in the middle of a corn field, I turned when I heard the soft voice call out my name. My eyes scanned the field, hoping to pinpoint where the voice had come from.

“Regina.” The voice called out again.

Instinctively, I walked forward through the corn field as the voice continued to call out my name. Finally, I made it to the edge of the corn field and it opened up to reveal a dark cave from the side of a large mountain that I honestly didn’t notice until now. But inside the cave opening was a woman. The woman had her back turned to me so I couldn’t see her face. However, she had curly, puffy chestnut hair that just barely touched her shoulders, had a beautiful hourglass figure and had a 1940′s style dress that was in a gorgeous dark blue color with white polka dots.

Eying her strangely, I cautiously made my way towards her.

“Beware.” She told me in that soft tone.

Of course, instead of questioning her I just kept walking towards her. I held out my hand, suddenly wanting to see this woman’s face. However, my body immediately tensed up when the woman’s appearance began to darken.

“Beware.” Her voice deepened with a vicious tone that caused shivers to go down my spine.

Even though I was shaking with fear, my hand still continued to go towards her. But once I grabbed her shoulder, the woman instantly transformed into a large monstrous beast with long horns.

“Be-” The beast whirled around revealing it’s horrendous blood red eyes and it roared, showing its large fangs, “WARE!”

“AHHHH!”


“AH!” I screamed as I shot up from my bed. Darting my eyes around, I relaxed when I realized I was safe and sound in my room. I exhaled loudly in relief, “Oh thank, God!”

BEEP-BEEP!

“AH!” Startled by the sound, I jumped with my back up against the wall. I tossed my gaze downwards to determine the source of the sound, only to learn that it was just my alarm clock. “Argh!” I groaned out, now feeling silly about the whole thing. Leaning towards it, I turned off the alarm, “Jeez, that thing nearly scared the life right out of me!”

Letting out another loud sigh, I rubbed my eyes and I just sat there in my bed. “But, dang, what a great way to start the morning.”

Well, at least I woke up when I was supposed to. Although, I doubt I would have been able to get back to sleep, especially after a dream like that. “Oh, well.” I finally pulled off my covers and walked towards my closet. “Better start getting ready.”


It was a cloudy mid-October Friday morning and I strolled into the dining room as I tied my hair up with an orange rubber band, which matched my orange and white striped t-shirt. At the dining room table I spotted my father reading the newspaper while slowly chewing down his waffles. My mom, on the other hand, was in the kitchen either cleaning some dishes or making breakfast for herself or me.

Mom smiled when she noticed me. “Oh, good morning, Reggie.” The toaster’s ding caught both of our attention. My mom then grabbed a plate and carefully placed the waffles on it without burning herself. “Did you sleep well, darling?”

“For the most part yes.” I sat next to my father and exhaled loudly, “But then I got woken up by the most disturbing dream I’ve ever had in my life.”

“We kind of figured.” Mom set my plate of waffles in front of me. “We heard you scream all the way down here.”

“Really?”

“Well, you did scream pretty loudly.” Dad pointed out and asked with sudden concern. “You aren’t reading another horror book are you?”

“Pfft, no, I learned my lesson back in eighth grade. I actually don’t know what caused this dream to happen. But,” Now determined, I raised my hands slightly and told them firmly, “it’s a dream I just want to forget about. So I’m no longer going to talk about it and just forget it ever happened.”

“Good to hear.” Mom praised as she set a glass of apple juice right by my plate. “You certainly don’t want that hanging over your head all day.”

“Nope,” I instantly shook my head, “no way, no how, which is why I’m going to immediately switch subjects here. So is it going to rain all day today?” Peeking back at the patio doors, I went on, “It surely looks like it.”

“The weather person did say it would rain on and off, but it’ll stay cloudy for the majority of the day.” Mom answered.

“Lovely.” I replied sarcastically as I turned to eat my waffles.

“Oh, and Reggie?” Dad lowered his newspaper to inform me. “Luke will be coming home this weekend to deliver your car that Uncle Kevin had fixed up for you.”

“Oo, my Honda Accord is finally done?”

“Yup, he finally managed to get some free time to work on it. So next week you’ll be able to drive to school.”

“Booya!” I pumped my fist in the air, ecstatic with the news. “I’ve been waiting so long for this! That bus has been getting a little too crowded for my tastes.”

“Well,” He gestured his glass of water towards me, “I’m glad I was able to release you from that frustration.”

“You’re the best, dad, as always!”

Dad smirked with pride, “I do my best.”

Wow, my car’s coming back. This is so awesome! I can’t wait to tell Roxanne and Cole about this.


“Oh man, that is so cool!” Roxanne exclaimed as we walked into the school building. “So, no more bus for us next week?”

“Nope, and hopefully it’ll stay that way.”

“Yeah no kidding. We definitely don’t want another ‘break down on the highway’ incident like it did at the beginning of August.”

“Right? It was a good thing I was following dad and his brother, my Uncle Kevin, from our family cabin in Rhinelander to my grandparent’s house in De Pere.” I agreed, remembering that day like it was yesterday. “Otherwise we would have been stranded for a while, at least by ourselves.”

“Yup, and that would not have been fun.” Roxanne then added gruffly with her arms crossed, “Especially when some of us had to use the restroom.”

“Some of us meaning just you, Roxy.” Cole corrected from the other side of his sister. An amused grin appeared as he joked, “But it was hilarious to watch you do the potty dance.”

She hurled him a glare, “Hey, at least I don’t pee in the car!”

“I was five!” Cole furiously pointed at her, “It’s a perfectly reasonable age for accidents to happen!”

“You still did it and I never did that so there!” Roxanne stuck her tongue out like a child.

“Okay, okay, knock it off you two.” I popped in between them, preventing the argument from continuing. “Let’s just say it was quite the experience and leave it at that, okay?”

My cousins scowled for a moment before they both released a loud sigh in defeat.

“Oh, okay, fine.” Cole was the first to reply. “I have to go ask one of my teachers something anyway.” He turned and waved, “See ya guys later.”

Roxanne and I nodded before he retreated to his side of the building. Once he was out of our sights, Roxanne let out another rough sigh and looked at me. “I’m going to head to my locker.” She gave me a quick soldier salute, “See ya in a bit.”

“Okay.” I gave her a quick nod before we went our separate ways.

“Oh, I saw Tyler and Zane this morning!” A familiar female voice exclaimed with excitement.

Looking towards the voice’s direction, I learned that it was Alivia, Jenna and Stephanie.

“Oo, really?” Jenna’s eyes lit up at Alivia’s announcement. “Were you able to talk to them?”

“Ugh, no, those two just gave me a look and walked away.” Alivia answered in slight annoyance. “But when I persisted to get them to talk Zane snapped at me with that harsh glare of his. Once I saw that I immediately retreated for the moment.”

“Brr.” Jenna shivered. “Yeah, I would have high tailed it out of there too if I saw that glare of his. I swear Zane has truly the most ice chilling glares I’ve ever seen in my life.”

“No kidding and I would have thought they would have warmed up to us by now. Heck, I thought Tyler would have eventually come around. He doesn’t seem to be as rough as his brother, but even he’s been a little difficult in his own way.”

“Then why are you two still wasting your breath on those two?” Stephanie scoffed indifferently. “Doesn’t seem to be all that worth it to me.”

“Says you, boy hater!” Alivia shot back with a hardened gaze. “Unlike you we would actually like to get a boyfriend.”

“Then stop flirting with every freaking boy you see and just pick one and stick with it! Like, I don’t know, the guys who are actually willing to talk to you?”

Alivia and Jenna scowled at Stephanie who merely just snorted back.

“Oh, why do you care?”

“Yeah, seriously! You’ve shown and expressed millions of times that you could care less about boys or anything that involves them?”

“I don’t.” Stephanie bluntly answered. “But I’m getting tired of you two targeting guys who have shown multiple times that they have no interest in you.”

“They do too!” Alivia and Jenna chorused loudly in defense.

“They just don’t know it yet.”

Stephanie rolled her eyes and marched away from the two girls in my direction. But she then realized I was in front of her, she kept her hard gaze on me. “What are you looking at bookworm?”

However, before I could even respond the redhead just snorted and stormed past me.

“Jeez, what’s her deal?” I heard Jenna complain in an odd tone.

“Right? We’ve known her since eighth grade and we still can’t figure her out.” Alivia agreed.

Wow, even her own friends are questioning Stephanie’s behavior. That’s something I don’t see everyday, so she doesn’t like boys? Guess that would explain some things, ever since I met her in seventh grade she’s never been the friendly type towards boys. But then again, she’s never been chummy with hardly anyone, even Jenna and Alivia, and they’re the ones she hangs out with here at school. Such an odd girl that one is and how Alivia and Jenna are still able to be friends with her is beyond me.


BRING!

“Alright, that concludes today’s talk.” Mrs. Allen announced, still sitting on her table with her book now closed. “But read chapters five and six and we’ll talk about those two on Monday.”

When she finished all of our classmates began to chat as they stood up and began to herd towards the classroom door.

“Yes, something easy.” Roxanne praised with a sigh of relief as she stood up.

“Have some tough homework tonight?” I quizzed curiously as I stood up next to her.

“Well, Pre-Calculus won’t be too hard, but I think Chemistry might be the death of me this weekend.”

“That bad, eh?” I assumed while we made our way towards the door.

“Yeah, to the point that I may need to ask your dad for help.”

“Well, if Luke’s going to be home then I assume my dad will be home all weekend. So I’ll give him the heads up tonight.”

“Oh, thank you, Ace!” Roxanne rejoiced happily. “You’re a lifesaver! OOF!” She abruptly interrupted herself as she bumped into someone.

“Hey! Watch it!”

We found Zane glaring down at us with Tyler right next to him with his eyes also on us.

Roxanne’s face immediately hardened and shot back. “Well, excuse me, don’t just randomly stop in front of me!

“Not my fault, pipsqueak!”

“Pipsqueak?” Roxanne murmured softly, appearing to be surprised by that nickname.

Zane aimed his finger towards the door. “In case you haven’t noticed everyone’s trying to get out all at once!”

We followed his finger to indeed realize that he was right, which caused a bit of a backup.

“Jeez!” Zane continued to scowl out with his focus back on our classmates. “It’s like none of these morons have realized that this is the stupidest way to exit a classroom or any room for that matter!”

“Relax.” Tyler attempted to calm his twin brother. “They just want to get to their next class.”

“How is this making it any faster!?” Zane challenged loudly. He crossed his arms and glared harshly at the crowd. “Either they get moving or I’m shoving my way through!”

“Zane, have patience.”

“Screw patience! I want to get out of here!” Then without a second thought Zane stormed his way through. He pushed and shoved our classmates aside, causing a little uproar as he made it to the door.

Tyler placed his face in his palm, obviously frustrated and embarrassed by Zane’s approach.

“Wow,” Roxanne glared blankly, “even I have more patience and restraint than that.”

“Yup.” Tyler exhaled, “But that’s Zane for you.” Once those words left him, he made his way towards the door and managed to get out.

We also managed to get out into the hall and made our way towards our lockers.

“Damn, what complete opposites those two are.” My cousin commented in slight amazement. “One’s calm and rational and the other is impatient and irrational. It’s crazy!”

“Well, that makes it easy to tell them apart.” I added optimistically, “Other than their hair and clothing styles.”

“I suppose. Well.” We stopped at the four way hall and Roxanne waved. “See you in the lunchroom.”

“Yup.” I merely replied and we went our separate ways. Of course for me it wasn’t that far to go, considering my locker was not too far from the four way hall. Once there I opened it up and began dumping my school supplies in until I had nothing left in my hands other than my wallet for lunch. I closed my locker and motioned to walk towards the lunchroom. However, someone abruptly, yet gently bumped into me.

I yelped softly and looked up at the culprit. “Tyler?”

Tyler gave me a sheepish, remorseful smile. “Heh, sorry about that, Regina. It seems to be a trend lately, bumping into you like this.”

“Yeah, so it seems.”

It actually has been a thing lately, to the point that I’m beginning to wonder if he’s doing this on purpose. He only seems to bump into me like this when I’m by myself and when he does we always end up having a little chat. So whenever I overhear my classmates mention Tyler and how he hardly ever willingly talks to anyone, I honestly find it hard to believe. When he bumps into me he’s always the one that starts the conversation and he seems so chatty to me, not that I mind, I actually really like talking to him. It was comfortable, a comfortable that I’m not going to lie...feels strangely familiar. Not sure why, it’s definitely puzzling to say the least, but it’s something I haven’t been too concerned about.

But even though we’ve talked for quite some time, I haven’t really learned anything about him other than the fact that him and Zane turned eighteen in August. Him and I both like detective shows and superhero movies and that him and his family moved here from West Virginia. But other than that, nothing else.

“But ya know....” Nervously, I fiddled with my wallet. “You don’t have to keep calling me Regina. You can call me Reggie if you like.”

“I know.” Tyler returned with a soft, tender smile. “But I prefer to call you Regina.” His smile suddenly faded and cautiously asked, “That’s okay...right?”

“Oh, yes! Of course!” I hastily assured with a slight wave of my hand. “I was just letting you know that you are more than welcome to call me Reggie too.”

His smile returned. “Well, thanks for that, but I’m good. So then,” Changing the subject, he asked, “what are your plans for the weekend?”

“Uh-um....” I began, slightly caught off guard by his question. “Um, not much. My older brother is coming home from college this weekend, but that’s mainly it.”

“Older brother?” Tyler recited, he then raised a brow. “You have a brother?”

“Yes, I do.”

“What’s his name?”

I eyed him, unsure why he would want to know that. “Um, Luke, that’s his name.”

“Luke?!” Tyler’s eyebrows flew up. “Your brother’s name is Luke?”

“Uh, yeah? Why is that weird?”

How could that be though? Luke isn’t that unusual of a name. So why is he completely stunned by it?

“Oh no.” He shook his head and waved his hand in reassurance. “No, no, not at all. I...I knew someone back in West Virginia with that name, so hearing it caught me by surprise.”

That’s an understatement. “Really? A friend, an acquaintance or enemy?”

“A friend.”

“Oh?” That was quite the big reaction, the Luke he knew must have been a real good friend.

“What the heck are you doing, Tyler?”

“Huh?”

We both looked behind Tyler just as Zane zoomed up, grabbed Tyler’s shoulder and gently guided him down the hall past me.

“Stop being a slow poke and get moving! Lunch will end quicker than you think.”

“Wait, Zane!”

“No wait, just go nimrod!”

I just observed the two as they left my sight, this was another thing that always seemed to happen. Whenever Tyler and I end up getting more into our conservation where we could end up learning more about each other, Zane abruptly shows up and shoves Tyler away. Not sure what the deal is, but it’s really making me wonder, a little more than I should.

“Wow, was Tyler actually talking to you, Reggie?”

“Hm?” Peering over my shoulder, I spotted Samantha and Chester coming up to me. “Oh, uh, yeah he was.”

“That’s quite the development.” Chester furrowed a brow. “Was that the first time he’s ever spoken to you?”

“No, ever since he first ran into me back in September he has bumped into me a couple more times. He has spoken to me all those times as well.”

“Wow, so you’re the only person Tyler’s willingly talked to.” Samantha stated in her own amazement.

“Am I really?” I quizzed in slight doubt.

“Yup, at least on his own accord.”

“Who’s accord?” I heard Roxanne voice in as she appeared beside Chester and Samantha with Taylor right next to her. She arched a brow, “What are you guys talking about?”

Chester flicked his thumb in my direction. “Turns out Tyler has taken a liking to Reggie, considering he’s been bumping into her and talking to her recently.”

“What?” Roxanne gaped out softly and snapped her widen gaze to me. “Has he really?”

“Uh,” I nodded, “yeah...I guess.”

“How long as that been going on?” Roxanne moved closer to me.

“Hm...for a couple weeks, at least ever since that first week they came to school here.”

“Whoa! Seriously?”

“I guess, but Tyler and Zane did kind of talk to both you and me last hour?” I brought up.

“Yeah, but that’s because I bumped into Zane.” Roxanne reminded. “That caused him to talk in return, they haven’t really talked to anyone on their own terms. So hearing that Tyler has actually talked to you on his own is definitely a big development.”

That was a good point and I could use Tyler bumping into me as an argument that maybe he’s not talking to me on his own terms. However, Tyler’s always the one that starts the conversation with no looks of regret whatsoever and he has been doing it a lot lately. So maybe I am the only one he actually wants to talk to, but why? Why am I the only one?

“Oo, this will totally make Alivia and Jenna jealous that’s for sure!” Taylor exclaimed with cocky smirk.

Oh shoot! I almost forgot what this type of development could mean. But I guess that means I should prepare myself, since whether I like it or not those two are going to hear about this. Although, I must admit...I don’t mind.

“So, did you learn anything about our new classmates?” Taylor went on with curiosity.

“No much, just that they turned eighteen in August and that they moved here from West Virginia.” I then spread my hands, “Other than that nothing much.”

“Aw dang! So nothing really good yet?” Taylor complained with disappointment.

“Nope, not at this point.”

“Well, it’s only been a few weeks.” Samantha reassured Taylor. “I’m sure we’ll learn more about them as the year goes on.”

Taylor exhaled, “I suppose. But I guess the most important thing we have learned so far is that at least one of the twins are friendly. Zane is still questionable in that department.”

“Yeah, right?” Samantha gladly agreed. “Zane definitely does have that...unapproachable look going on.”

Roxanne hummed and I could tell by the wrinkles in her expression that she was very upset about something. She turned her gaze down the hallway. “Yeah, unfortunately.” Then once those words left her mouth, Roxanne made her way down the hall.

As we watched her walk away from us, we looked at one another. We were slightly baffled by my cousin’s reaction, but we then shrugged and followed Roxanne towards the lunchroom.

Roxanne’s behavior lately has also been on my radar. There are times when she’s completely her normal self, like her reaction the first week the twins moved here never even happened. But then there are days where she throws a curve ball at us that catches us off guard a bit – a lot of those moments had to do with the twins – which of course makes it even stranger. Either those two would do or say something that would give her this odd, flabbergasted expression or make her go in a daze, which I’ve honestly never seen her do in a real long time. Her statement just now is also a prime example of her odd behavior, normally she would have agreed with Samantha, Chester and Taylor, but she didn’t. However, if I were to ask her about it she would either brush me off or change the subject on me, which is another thing she doesn’t do very often. Honestly, the only subject she does that to is when it’s about her father and we’ve all learned never to bring that up. But seriously, what is it about Tyler and Zane that has gotten her to act so...so weird lately?


“Gosh darn it!” Roxanne cursed as we got off the bus and stared up at the sky. She had pulled her hood from her hoodie sweater to protect her head from the raindrops that had now increased. Shielding her eyes from the rain, I saw her glaring up at the very gray sky. “Why is it deciding to down pour now? Couldn’t it have waited until I got into my house or work for that matter?”

I shrugged, “Guess mother nature decided against you.”

“Ugh, still doesn’t mean I have to like it.”

We began to make our way towards our homes with Cole trailing behind us playing on his phone. Roxanne shot him a glare. “Are you really going to play on that now?! When you’re out in the pouring rain?”

“Hey, I’m almost done with this level!” Cole defended, not bothering to look up at her.

She rolled her eyes in annoyance, but released a rough sigh and met my gaze. “So, you think Luke’s going to be there with your car?”

“Don’t know, but I’m sure we’ll find out when we get there.”

“Say, if your car is there could you possibly give me a ride to work? I know the plan was to have your mom drop me off but I don’t know if she’ll get off in time. She does normally get off between three thirty and four o’clock and I need to be there by four.”

I nodded, understanding her circumstances. “Sure, I’ll give you a lift...as long as it’s there.”

“Ah, Ace, you really are a lifesaver.” Roxanne praised me with gratitude and looked ahead of me. Something must have caught her eye, because she suddenly chuckled and tossed me a smirk. “Well, looks like this plan will definitely work out.”

“Huh?” I followed her gaze to determine what she had been talking about. But I soon realized what she meant when I spotted a familiar 2009 blue, two door Honda Accord parked in my driveway. “Oh,” I perked up at the sight, “well this is convenient.”

“I’ll say.” Roxanne gladly agreed as we strolled up my driveway.

I was about to touch it when the car door on the driver’s side suddenly opened. My eyes darted towards the person only to sigh in relief when I met Luke’s gaze. “Oh, Luke. Did you just get here?”

He gave me a smug smirk. “Sure did, man do I have perfect timing or what?”

“You bet you did!” Roxanne practically hopped towards my brother. She waved her hand towards me. “Now, Ace, will be able to get me to work on time.”

“You work tonight?” Luke questioned, assuming the obvious.

“Yup, that I do.”

“Well, then.” He bowed and deepened his voice to sound like a goofy, English gentleman. “I’m happy to be of service madam.”

Roxanne chuckled and played along, imitating his action. “Aw, well thank you my dear sir and for a reward I’ll make you some brownies tomorrow.”

“Oo brownies!” Luke immediately straightened up with his face lite up with excitement. “I definitely love brownies.”

Cole, Roxanne and I laughed at my brother. I then strolled up next to him and tapped him on the shoulder. “So can you hand me my keys so I can drop Roxy off?”

“Oh, sure thing.” My brother dug into his jean pockets and pulled out the car keys. He then handed them to me. “Here you go.”

“Awesome!” Cole abruptly chimed in with his joyous gaze on my brother. “With those two out of the way for a while you and I can have some guy time!”

“Guy time? You mean playing video games and watching classic superhero cartoons?”

Cole snapped his fingers at Luke. “Exactly!”

“Oh,” Luke gave him a sly grin, “you read my mind, kid. That’s exactly the thing I’m looking for after a long week.”

“Glad I could be of use.”

Roxanne and I rolled our eyes in amusement at the two before we met each other’s gazes.

“So get your things and we’ll get going.” I informed her.

“You got it!”


I pulled into the Pick N’ Save parking lot in Mukwonago where Roxanne worked. I found the closest parking spot I could find that was near the door, pulled into that spot and parked it. My gaze drifted to Roxanne. “Alright, here’s our stop.”

“Thanks again, Ace.” Roxanne slid her purse strap on her shoulder.

“Do you need me to come pick you up?”

“No, mom gets done the same time I do. So she’ll be picking me up when her shifts done.”

“Ah, okay.” My phone suddenly started to ring from inside my purse. I pulled it out and looked at the caller ID, “Oh, it’s my mom.” I answered it. “Hey, mom. What’s up?”

Hey, honey, I heard from Luke and Cole that you had taken Roxy to work?

“Yup, that I did. Why did you want to?”

No, I’m just glad she was able to get there on time, since I was having a hard time getting out of work. But since you’re at Pick N’ Save I was wondering if you could pick up a few things?

“Um, sure. What do you need?”

Bread, eggs, cereal, milk and some juice.

“Okay, I’ll go grab those things and I’ll be on my way home.”

Thank you, Reggie.

“No problem. Okay, see you when I get home, bye.” I hung up and stuffed my phone back into my purse.

“Heading inside I take it?” I heard Roxanne ask as she opened her car door.

I nodded, “Yup, mom wants me to pick up some things.”

“Then let’s get going.”

Once we made it inside the store, Roxanne and I went our separate ways. Roxanne went over to one of her managers to see where they wanted her to work and I went around gathering the materials mom wanted me to get. I had almost everything, except the juice, so I went down the juice aisle and scanned the shelves since I knew the type of juice my mother always gets, which were usually the cranberry juice mixes or apple juice or sometimes both. However, since I was so preoccupied with the shelves I wasn’t paying attention to anyone else around me and ended up bumping into someone with enough force to knock the both of us away slightly.

“Oh! I’m-”

“Watch where you’re going you, moron!” A male voice practically shouted in anger.

Confounded by that aggressive outburst, I shot my eyes upwards to find myself meeting a pair of emerald, green eyes. Those green eyes belonged to a tall, blonde haired boy who appeared to be the same height as Tyler and Zane, which was about six feet and two inches tall, his face also reminded me of the twins as well. That strong looking facial structure, that gave the impression that if you punch his jaw you would break your fist. His skin was smooth just like the twins, however his skin was more lighter almost like mine and his nose was a little different from the twins.

“What the hell are you looking at?!” He demanded.

I flinched, “Uh-um...s-sorry.” Hastily, I motioned to scurry past him.

I felt someone grab my arm and I yelped in shock when I was roughly pulled back. I was then slammed against the shelves causing me to yowl in pain. I closed my eyes and grimaced in agony, slowly I opened one eye and a startled gasp came out when I found myself staring into the green eyes of the blonde boy.

“Wha-what are you doing?!”

However, the boy didn’t answer he just eyed me down with such intensity that it honestly caused me to shake a bit. Just what in the world was he doing? First he yells at me for running into him and for staring at him and now he practically throws me up against the shelf and glares me down? But that gaze...he kind of looks...confused? Is that confusion or am I getting it mixed up with another form of anger?

But those eyes...there was something about them that was striking a cord...and I was not liking it one bit!

Panic pulsed through me when I noticed that he was inching closer to me with his gaze not leaving mine. “Get away from me!” I yelled and shoved him away. Then without a second thought I dashed down the aisle, only peeking over my shoulder once to find that he was still back there.

“AH!” I abruptly yelped in surprise when I smacked into someone else. Oh great, not another one! I don’t need someone else to yell at me.

“Hey! Watch it!” A familiar voice snapped back at me.

I looked up and gaped. “Z-Zane?!”

There Zane stood with a basket of items as well. He lifted his eyebrows before he narrowed them. “Not you again! How many times must you bump into us?”

“Sorry!” I hastily shot back, which caused him to raise a brow at me. Scooting away from him, I went on still shaken up. “S-sorry, sorry didn’t mean to.”

I don’t know if the panic was still on my face because Zane suddenly asked with a hint of concern. “What’s up with you?”

“Nothing! J-Just c-cold, that’s all.” However, I could tell by Zane’s expression that he wasn’t buying my excuse. So quickly I turned and said. “G-Got to go.” Then once again I found myself smacking right into someone’s chest. Another startled gasp escaped me and motioned to run past the person, not daring to look up.

“Whoa, whoa slow down there!” Another familiar voice spoke up as they grabbed my arms.

Very shocked by the action, my eyes flew up and gasped. “Tyler?!” Seriously?! These two are actually grocery shopping together?

Tyler took note of my panic struck expression and immediately became worried. “Hey, what’s wrong? You’re shaking.”

“I-I am?” I took a moment to observe myself and I was indeed shaking. “O-Oh, I guess I am.” Wow, this is a first, but they can’t really blame me. I mean seriously who wouldn’t be shaking after experiencing something like that?!

“Regina.” Tyler kept his firm grip on my shoulders and leaned down. His face became firm but his eyes were gentle. “What happened? What has gotten you so shaken up like this?”

“Why is that any of your concern?” A young girl’s voice stepped in from behind Zane. We looked as a preteen girl, appearing to be around Cole’s age, strolled up with her one hand on her hip while she carried a gallon of milk. She had long blonde hair that was up in a ponytail, emerald green eyes and had the same type of tanned skin that Tyler and Zane had. She was a bit of a toothpick, but her body was still developing considering the slight curves she did have.

She hardened her gaze on Tyler. “This is her business not yours. So let her deal with it herself.”

Tyler returned her glare. “Kailey, how can you expect me to just walk away after seeing her like this?”

“Simple, just let her go and walk this way.”

“Pfft not a chance!”

“Tyler!”

He knows this girl? Kailey? Is she a relation or something? Must be considering the exchange that’s going on between these two. But...ugh again why does that name sound familiar? This is really kind of getting annoying. I know Kailey is a common name so no doubt I’ve heard it around. But I don’t know...just like with Tyler and Zane’s names...it’s sparking something, but I can’t figure out why.

“Oh would you two just shut up!” Zane intervened loudly as he appeared between us. “You two won’t make this go any faster if you two sit here arguing.”

“What! Don’t tell me you actually want to help this twit!”

Twit? Did she seriously just call me that? Well, she’s certainly a pocket full of sunshine.

“Honestly, it depends on what it is. But knowing Tyler,” Zane cast a glance in Tyler’s direction with a blank expression, “regardless of what it is, he won’t leave it alone until it gets done. So let’s just get this over with.” He shifted his stare on me, “So, what’s the deal, pipsqueak?”

Jeez, what’s with him and the name pipsqueak? He’s only called me and Roxanne that since he met us on his first week of school.

I suppose it would be a good idea to warn the other shoppers about him. I don’t know this guy’s story, but dang that was a creepy thing to experience and I don’t want anyone else to go through that.

“Uh-um.” By this point I had calmed down enough to not shudder when I spoke and I aimed my finger towards the aisle I darted out from. “Some guy threw me against the shelves.”

“What?” Tyler quickly tossed Zane a glance. This stare caused his twin to sigh and stroll over towards the aisle.

Zane peeked down and cast me an arched brow. “What you talking about? No one’s there.”

“What?” I whispered out and managed to get out of Tyler’s hold to go by Zane. Looking down the aisle, I realized that he was right, the blonde boy was no longer there. I exhaled, “Well...he was.”

Guess he must have retreated, not wanting to get in trouble for what he did.

“Heh, I knew it.” The girl, Kailey, abruptly snorted out. She shot me an annoyed look. “A complete waste of time, just a pretty little twit looking for attention.”

My eyebrows shot up, stunned by her statement. But her expression it kind of looked...fake?

“Kailey.” Tyler scolded, giving her a warning glare.

“Look!” Feverishly, she gestured her hands towards the aisle. “Can we please just get our stuff and get out of here?”

Tyler merely scowled while Zane scoffed, although I’m not sure if it was at his twin or the girl.

I took that as my cue to leave the store. “Um...I better go.” Not daring to look at them, I zoomed past them.

“Wait!” Tyler snatched my arm again with concern. “Are you going to be okay?”

“Uh, yeah, I’ll be fine. If that guy’s not there he must be somewhere else in the store.” I think I was telling myself that more than him. But feeling a little flustered as Tyler’s baby blue eyes watched me, I added nervously. “B-Besides, I need to get home, my parents are waiting. So, um,” I managed to pull my arm out of his grasp, “I’ll see you Monday.”

I didn’t look back as I rushed my way towards the self-checkout and made it outside. Once I was outside I inhaled deeply held it in for a moment before I released it. “The most bizarre experience at the grocery store ever.” But now I can go home and forget the whole thing ever happened.

Raising my gaze towards the parking lot, I learned that the rain had calmed down a bit. “Well, that’s good. I can get to my car without getting soaking wet.” Adjusting my bag between fingers, I made my way towards my Honda and pulled out my keys from my purse.

“Regina?” A male voice called out to me softly.

“Hm?” I glanced over my shoulder. Suddenly, a hand came out at me, covered my mouth and slammed me against an SUV. I muffled a scream as my grocery bag, purse and keys crashed onto the ground and I immediately brought my hands up to try and pry the stranger’s hand off of me.

“Don’t even think about it!” The male voice scolded me loudly. He motioned to grab my hands, however, by this point I had opened my mouth enough to bite down hard on his hand.

He yelped in more surprise than pain and just when I was about to run for it, this guy grabbed me again and smacked me back against the SUV. This time he had his one arm tightly over my upper body, preventing me from moving my arms while his other hand placed itself over my mouth again.

Finally, I opened my eyes and looked up at the culprit only to have my eyebrows shoot up in utter terror. I was literally face to face with that green eyed, blonde boy from the juice aisle! What in the blazing hell is he doing?!

“Don’t move.” He ordered me in a tone that caused me shiver in fear.

Pure panic erupted as I began thrashing about, trying to break free from this jerk’s grasp. However, that just caused him to growl with irritation and annoyance.

“I said,” His hand that covered my mouth tightened, hurting my cheeks slightly, as he forced me to look up at him. I met his stare as it suddenly widened, “Don’t move!”

Gasping sharply, I felt my body go numb. Wha-What? What just happened? Why did my body suddenly go numb?

“And that means no biting.” The blonde boy went on strictly.

I will bite if I want to and I definitely will! But what-?

His hand over my mouth began to move slightly and immediate alarm struck through me when I felt his thumb open my mouth. What the hell was he going to do?!

Hastily, I motioned to bite down on his thumb, but for some reason I couldn’t. This baffled me, so I tried again but I ended up with the same result. I couldn’t move my mouth, so instead I tried to struggle against him in order to get his finger out of my mouth. However, more fear emerged when I realized that I couldn’t move, I literally could not move my own body! No matter how many times my brain begged my arms, legs and mouth to move it wouldn’t do it. It’s like the connection to my brain and body got disconnected somehow.

The blonde boy must have noticed my panic, because he suddenly chuckled. “What’s wrong? Having issues there?”

My eyes widened with pure fear. Did he...but how...just what on earth did he do to me?!

I was literally helpless as he held my mouth open and he leaned down. My heart rattled against my rib cage in terror as I watched the boy open his own mouth and held it just a few short inches from mine.

Oh my God! Was he going to kiss me? Rape me?! Both?!

His eyes closed as he kept his mouth inches from mine. Then strangely, I felt some type of air moving around inside of me and suddenly a sharp pain appeared, which caused a distressed, muffled scream to escape me. The air that was roaming around inside of me made its way up my throat and out of my mouth, which caused the pain to intensify.

My first immediate reaction was to dart away from this creep, but again I couldn’t! All I could do was stand there and let this happen! Damn it! Just what the hell is he doing? Is he trying to suck the life out of me? Is that even possible?! Oh, come on body move! Please move!

I darted my eyes around, wondering why no one was coming to my aide. Surely, someone else was out here?! No one would be heartless enough to just stand back at let this happen, right? Right!?

Ah, I’m feeling dizzy, weak. I don’t think my body can hold out much longer! Please, someone...anyone...HELP ME!

“REGINA!” A male voice practically screamed in what sounded like pure panic.

Weakly, I shifted my eyes towards the voice just in time to watch a fist slam itself against the blonde boy’s cheek. The guy yelled in surprise as the fist had enough force to knock him away from me, finally releasing me from his hold. I released a breath of relief when the pain and air had finally stopped.

However, I didn’t have enough energy to move or to even see if I could move. Although, that didn’t stop myself from falling forward and almost hitting the ground. Luckily, a familiar voice called out my name before the person quickly caught me.

“Regina!” The voice said again in a broken tone, sounding shocked with what they had witnessed. The person positioned me more comfortably in their arms so I could look up at them. I was stunned to learn that it was Tyler.

“T-Tyler?” I managed to whisper out.

“Regina!” Tyler’s baby blues were filled with terror and concern. “Are you alright? What happened!?”

“I-I don’t know.” I grunted out as my gaze started to blur. Panting, I attempted to go on. “He...he....”

“Hey, stay with me!” Tyler ordered me and I could hear the desperation in his tone. “Come on, don’t give up on me! He what?”

“He...he....” My vision began to darken.

Tyler must have noticed something because he started to shake me. “No, Regina! Stay with me! Regina!”

However, my body didn’t obey, because just as those words left his mouth, I passed out.

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