Another day had gone by. Another day closer to losing Ella. Sixteen days left. I was training for three days with Liam and we started dating yesterday. He was talking me on our first date tonight, but as soon as we got off the couch this morning we decided to switch trainers. Now I was outside with Alexis throwing daggers to work on my aim.
I pulled arm back, dagger in hand. “Loosen up,” Alexis said.
“I’m loose!” I said through my teeth.
“No you’re not. Relax your shoulders, loosen up.” I tried to do what she told me. “There, that’s perfect. Now take a deep breath and throw.”
I let go of the dagger in my hand and watched as it went sailing through the air and hit just above the bullseye. I groaned I kept hitting the same spot over and over again. In the last hour I had hit the same spot a total of 62 times.
“You’re doing good. The dagger is hitting right outside the middle and that would work perfectly to kill a shifter,” Alexis said. She put a hand on my shoulder,” You know we’re going to save her, right? We are all determined to save Ella no matter the cost.”
I knew she was trying to comfort me, but all she was doing was making me worry more about my baby sister. I looked up at the sky. I used to watch the sky with Ella and argue over the shapes of the clouds. We did it before mom and dad died.
“Can we take a break inside?” I asked I needed a break. I wanted to go inside wrap myself in a blanket and Liam’s arm. I know we just started dating but I really did like him a lot. I had never liked anyone like that.
“Sure,” Alexis said. We walked inside together and went separate ways. Alexis walked up the stairs to her room or maybe Alex’s while I went to the living room so I could do exactly what I had wanted to do, possibly without Liam. I entered the living room and saw the slightly younger boy reading a book.
“Hey,” I said. He looked up from his book.
“Hey.” He shifted so I could sit next to him and in the little corner in the couch.
“What book is that?” I asked trying to get a glimpse of the cover.
“What book? I don’t see any books,” he laughed nervously.
“That book,” I said pointing to the thick book behind his back.
“There is no book.”
“Oh really?” I asked. I put my arms around Liam and quickly grabbed the book. I looked at it and started laughing like a maniac. “Twilight really? I never thought you were into romance.”
“I-It’s not mine Alexis is forcing me to read it,” he laughed again.
“You’re a terrible liar you know.”
“No I’m not,” he shot back.
“Yes you are,” I said.
“Stop it,” he whined. I quickly kissed his cheek and giggled.
“You know you’re adorable,” I said. Liam pouted and I poked him. I decided to get up then, but Liam had other ideas. He wrapped his arms around my waist, pulled me into his lap, started tickling me. I started laughing and begging him to stop but he wouldn’t stop no matter what I said or did. I heard someone behind me clear their throat, so finally Liam stopped.
“I hope I didn’t interrupt anything,” I heard Zach say angrily.
“Nope. You had perfect timing,” I said glaring at my boyfriend. “I was just about to leave. Would you like to join me?” Zach nodded his head and I got up and flicked Liam’s forehead, earning a loud, “Hey!” Before pulling Zach out of the house.
“So you wanted to talk to me?” asked Zach.
“Yeah, you’ve been so angry and distant lately, why?” I asked.
“I guess all the stress with Ella missing, the shifters, and the deadline, it’s been so… I don’t know.”
“Are you jealous?” I blurted before i could stop myself.
“Liam,” I said staring at the horizon.
“Why would I be jealous of him?” he asked nervously.
“Everyone thinks you’re jealous of him because apparently you’ve always had a major crush on me,” I said like it was the craziest thing in the world.
“W-well, what if it was true?” My best friend stuttered.
“I would tell you I’ve never thought of you that way. I’ve never thought of you as more than a brother, but I still think you are one of the people that’s had the most impact on my life,” I said gently.
“What if I had asked you out before you had started dating Liam? Would you have said yes?” He asked, suddenly yelling.
“No, did you hear a word I just said?! I’ve always thought of you as a brother. Nothing more!” I shouted, finally realizing what Zach must’ve said at Starbucks the day he officially became a member of Team Marie.
Zach turned his back and whispered, “Would you have said yes if you just met me like Liam or would you rather have never met me?”
“Oh Zach, no I’m so glad I met you. You’ve always been the best friend I could ever have, better than even Liz. I know you don’t like me being with Liam, and i know I just met him but I feel like something clicked when we met, because I really like him,” I said, putting a hand on his shoulder trying to comfort him.
“I think I’m gonna go. Marie, I’ll swear I’ll try to support in any way I can, but it’ll take a little while for that wound can heal,” Zach said quietly, tears falling down his face. Before I could reply I heard Leon yelling at us to come inside because Alexis had found something that could be the most important part of our hunt for shifters and Ella’s rescue. We ran inside and into the kitchen where the rest of the crew was waiting.
“I found the hideout. I found them. I found their queen. I found Ella.” Alexis said breathlessly.
“Have you gained their trust?” A female voice said from atop her throne.
“Yes m’lady,” a young man said from the ground.
“How many times have I told you call me mother. You should be more like your sister, braver and less of a wimp,” the woman said.
“Yes dear brother. Be more like me, because I’m the best,” a pixie like voice chirped from beside the throne.
“Shut up Elizabeth. You aren’t perfect either you should be more like your uncle, silent but strong and brave,” snapped the girl’s mother.
“Yes mother,” the girl scowled, her head bowed.
“Soon we will meet again my dear Marie, soon,”