your life before mine

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Chapter 4

I walk into my house around 6pm smiling when Hero comes to greet me. At least some things didn’t change.

I walk up to my room with Hero following closely behind, change into a casual T-shirt and jeans before walking out in search of Lexi.

Hero starts to lead the way and I willingly follow.

He leads me to the back yard that consisted of four parts, there was a long hedge dividing the four places.

There was a pool, a rose garden, a vegetable garden and a green house, all well taken care of.

He leads me to the rose garden and I look around for a while before spotting her.

Samuel, Imelda and Lexi were seated on the ground seeming to be talking about something intently.

Hero barks bringing their attention to me and he runs over to Lexi with me following behind.

I was glad Lexi found some people to talk to, I wouldn’t like it if she was always left alone.

It was cold so I wonder what they were doing out, at least they were all wearing jerseys.

It was nearing winter so it was getting damp and cold, hopefully they’d let us off work soon.

“Hey, Dylan we were just talking about you,” Samuel says making me confused.

“Good things I hope,” I say and sit on the grass with them.

“Yeah, Samuel and I have to go finish working,” Imelda says forcing Samuel to stand.

“I just got here, what’s the rush?” I ask, shocked.

“Don’t mind them,” Lexi says and I turn to look at her.

For some reason my heart skips a beat when I see her, I think I need to go to the hospital.

“You need to know something,” She says, “So you can decide what you want to do with me,”

“Why would you say that?” I ask

“You have to know,” She says, leaning against the tree we were seated under.

“Go ahead, then,” I say, I had no idea what to expect.

“Well, have you heard of the two scientists on the run?” She asks

I’d heard it on the radio this morning, yesterday they were caught with confidential info, they had government information and were on the run.

Who ever found them would be given a reward in exchange for their capture.

Even their family members were on the run for they assumed even the family knew what they knew and had stolen.

“Yes, I have,” I say nodding, “What does that have to do with this?”

“Well, yesterday when you hit me,” She says, “I was actually running from some people who were looking for me because…”

She was running because…wait, wait, wait. The two scientists are Helen and George Jasper...could she be their daughter?

“I think I should leave because,” She starts, “If they find me here you’ll be accused of assisting a fugitive and I don’t want to cause any trouble,”

“Why should they be chasing you?” I ask, “Your parents are the ones with the information,”

“I know too,” Lexi says, running her fingers over Hero’s back.

“Are they the bad guys or the good guys?” I ask, it wouldn’t be right of me to judge without knowing the full story.

“Well, I think they are the good guys,” She says then sighs, “I’ll tell you the full story,” She decides.

Hero jumps up to go chase some butterflies that had caught his eye, leaving us alone.

“The government is experimenting on people against their will,” she starts, “They want their scientists to use them as test objects,”

“How are they getting the people?” I ask, if they knew they would be forced to do something they don’t want to do then why go with them in the first place?

“They have people going out and telling others they’ll receive a reward for helping,” She says, “That they should keep it a secret and shouldn’t tell their families.”

From what she’d told me I could already tell that the government was in the wrong, but they twisted up the story so that their sick deeds wouldn’t come out.

“When one of them dies,” she continues, “they send money and notes to their families threatening them to secrecy, but others notice their absence and report to the police,”

“What did your parents do?” I ask when she stays quiet.

“When they were brought into the picture they thought the people were volunteers,” She says, “But as time went on they realized and decided to quit. They were told they couldn’t because they already knew too much,”

“So they ran,” I say finally putting the pieces together.

She nods, “Yesterday, it all happened yesterday,” She says, “I was just from visiting them when I realized I’d been hearing the same sound for a long time. It was a car engine, I was being followed,”

Hero comes back and sets his head on her leg looking at her sadly, probably wanting to play.

“I ran, taking turns till I got lost,” She says, “I didn’t know there was a road so I kept walking, then you hit me,”

“I’m glad I hit you then, “I say and we both laugh, “you’re not in the wrong, you don’t have to leave,”

“Really?” She asks smiling.

“Yeah, I like having you around and I kinda owe you,” I say and smile.

“I’m glad,” She says and smiles.

We stay like that for a while, with me just looking at her, before Imelda comes and tells me Sophia is here.

I roll my eyes and pick Lexi up, since I couldn’t see her wheelchair anywhere and also because I really just liked having her close to me.

I walk back into the house and place her on a couch in the living room before walking to the door and opening it for Sophia.

I force a smile, “Hello,”

“Oh, hi!” She says in her irritatingly high pitched voice, “May I come in?”

Even before I can answer she walks past me, wow not even a decent greeting.

I follow her and realize she’d gone to the living room. Imelda was nowhere in sight, she was probably in the kitchen cooking our food.

“Ugh, Dylan, did you get a new maid?” I hear her ask and walk in to see her referring to Lexi.

“No, she’s my guest,” I correct her.

Hero walks in the room and barks at her growling loudly, Sophia gasps and hides behind me almost tripping in her high heels and tight dress.

“Call that thing off!”She shouts, way too loud for comfort.

“Don’t worry, he won’t attack unless I tell him too,” Lexi says her voice calming the dog down and he happily settles at her feet by the couch.

“Mutts like that belong outside,” She comments sitting down, “and so does the dog.”

I chose to seat beside Lexi because Sophia’s perfume always makes me sneeze.

No matter what I did she always found a fault in it.

She already told me she disliked my house and that when we get married I should sell it and buy another one that would suit her and not me.

Apparently my opinion doesn’t matter.

“So, Dylan,” She says ignoring Lexi’s presence, “I was wondering what color should be dominant during the reception; sky blue or lime green.”

I sigh, I almost forgot I have a wedding, “I don’t know, what do you think Lexi?” I ask

I wanted Lexi’s opinion because she seemed to have nice taste. She was really sweet compared to Sophia, everything she did she involved others unlike Sophia.

“Sky blue, I guess?” She says and I smile, I think blue is my new favorite color.

“Lime green then,” Sophia says scowling in our direction. What’s wrong with her?

We spend the rest of our time waiting for food in an uncomfortable silence. This was really torture.

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