A Message from the Authors:

For all previous readers of this story, we are sorry to inform you, but the reason that we haven't been updating over the last few months, is because we weren't happy with the way things were going with our story. We found we were taking character development to fast, but our plot line was too slow. So we decided to restart Zero Hour and truly make it the story we always envisioned it to be and use all of our characters to their full potential. We will update as fast as we can obviously, but for now we're focusing it on a better story, rather than a quick one. So please stick with us as we bring you this newly rebooted Zero Hour. We love all of you:

:) Ally

Chapter One: Unwanted Meetings

You could barely see the old, abandoned building in the dark. The only light for miles came from the town, far on the horizon, lights flickering on and off in the distance. It was getting late and people would rather be in bed. There was no sound either, just the sound of the gravel crunching under car tires, and the faint call of an owl in the distance. There were rusting fences, falling down, and the slight rattling of barbed wire scratching against something in the wind. With the wind brought the scent of harsh chemicals and stale urine, with a definite scent of mould and decay coming with it. There was the sound of brakes, followed by two simultaneous slams of the car doors, and the building was illuminated by the cold, white beams from its headlights.

'Stupid owl, I hate birds,' came a high, snarky tone.

'You have a pet parrot,' replied a baritone voice.

'What's your point?'

'Here we go again. If you don't like it here, then remind me again- whose idea was it to come here?' the second voice sighed, rolling his eyes at his companion.

'It was Scarlett's idea not mine, so shut up Orion.'

The teenager sighed, looking across the bonnet of his car at his friend who, as usual, wasn't even breaking her expression for a second. She had decided whose fault this was and no one could change her mind now. He ran a hand through his messy, brown hair, and then oddly found a twig in it. He never quite understood how things ended up in his hair, they always just appeared.


'What now?'

'How long have I had this stick in my hair?'

'Since lunch, who do you think put it in there?'

'Hilarious Lyra, hilarious.'

'I know. I think this place could use a little bit of a makeover.'

'Or some air freshener, either one will do.'

'I was thinking a new paint job; I think it would look ravishing in eggplant purple.'

'And I was thinking a couple of sticks of dynamite.'

'How about some geraniums in the window?'

'Or an atomic bomb?'

'You can just borrow the one your dad has in the basement.'

'No, that's in the attic, the nukes are in the basement.'

'My mistake.'

Orion rolled his eyes, looking away from Lyra and staring once again at the old building, and without even meaning to do it, he started stroking his chin, his finger catching on the little scar under it. He tugged absentmindedly at the sleeves of his jacket, trying to pull the blue, flame splatted material over his hands to block out some of the night's chill. His dark blue eyes surveyed the landscape, with a slightly annoyed glare, he hadn't exactly wanted to come, but if he hadn't come willingly, Lyra would have tied him up, stolen his car and taken him along regardless. And don't think for a second that she wasn't capable of doing it. Orion may have been two inches taller than her, but she'd figured out where his pressure point was, and she often took great pleasure in jabbing him in the side to make him comply with whatever she'd decided they were doing.

Lyra, seeming to know precisely what he was thinking, smirked at him evilly, her sapphire eyes lighting up with her classic "suck it" expression, before she went back to irritably fiddling with her blonde curls, which had decided floating in the wind was more fun than staying by her side. For some reason she had taken off her shoes, having chucked the bright purple, heeled, knee high boots inside the car, and had thrown the matching trench coat over one arm, not even seeming to feel the cold. But then she flopped back against the bonnet lazily, sinking to the ground, and calling up to Orion loudly;

'So when exactly is your girlfriend showing up?'

'For the millionth time Lyra, I met her today, what possibly makes you think I'm interested in her?'

'You forget how well I know you.'

'I don't, but you of all people should know that I have a general dislike for the human race in general. What makes you think Ally is any different?'

'My sources tell me that you were actually smiling today, something that's very unusual for you.'

'Your sources meaning Zack?'

'Not this time honey.'

'There's no one else in that class who you talk to.'

'That's what you think.'

'I give up.'

'You haven't already- What the hell is that sound?'

A slow, constant, repetitive clicking sounded out. It was whiney and irritating, but under these circumstances, it was successfully making Lyra start to jitter nervously. And Orion could already see that she was going for the pocket knife she always had, so that's when he decided to point out something to her.

'Lyra, it sounds like a push bike, calm down.'

'That's what the headless horseman wants you to think,' Lyra hissed.

'Isn't that Seb?' Orion asked squinting into the distance.

'As in little Seb? From science? Doubt it, someone that small would never come here alone.'

'I heard that!'

'You were supposed to!' Lyra called out in a matching tone.

The extremely small, slight boy pulled up on a rather rusty looking push bike, the headlights of the car illuminating his pale skin. His dark brown, nearly black hair, hung low in his overlarge eyes, which were also very dark. His face was small and delicate, with almost hollow cheeks, but so much of his face was covered by his hair that it was hard to notice how pixie like his features were. It was clear that his clothes were way too big for him as they hung off his near skeletal body like they'd been stolen from a much larger person's wardrobe. He looked up, as he definitely had to, at Lyra and Orion who were both observing him, seeming confused.

'What are you doing here exactly?' Lyra asked seeming slightly irritable.

'Uh… Ally said I could come… I'll go if you want-'

'No its fine Seb, really,' Orion said shooting Lyra a look, 'the more of us there are the less likely it is Lyra can kill us all in the dark.'

'Keep talking and you're my first target,' Lyra drawled, 'Remind me again how Ally's getting here?'

'She said something about one of her brothers driving her,' Orion shrugged.

'Which one?'

'I don't know, she's got about five.'

'Six actually,' Seb corrected, 'And then of course there's her sister.'

'Busy parents,' Lyra observed.

'That's disgusting Lyra,' Orion said tonelessly.

Seb looked ridiculously uncomfortable; he'd actually met her parents so the slight image he was getting was not helpful. Thankfully the slightly awkward silence that was spreading was broken by the sound of another car and a large amount of bickering.

'I think one of the twins is driving her,' Seb guessed.

Suddenly a car didn't so much pull up but started driving slightly slower, and then someone leapt straight out of the back seat three meters away from them and crashed straight into Orion. Orion slipped slightly, and before either of them knew what was happening, the girl had landed on top of him rather awkwardly.

'Ah… Hi Ally… Um…'

'Every time you end up in one of these situations just remember how much you hate hearing me say I told you so,' Lyra drawled loudly as Seb started shaking with silent laughter.

Ally sprung straight up looking awkward, 'Sorry!' she shrieked loudly.

'It's fine Ally… Why did you jump out of a moving car? That's what I do.'

'Oh you really think my brothers were going to stop for me?' Ally laughed before grabbing Orion's hand and pulling him to his feet not even noticing the loud laughter coming from Lyra and Seb.

Ally grinned before waving at the rather banged up looking car which stopped driving in circles and sped off. Ally turned to Orion and completely oblivious to the awkward look on his face, beamed at him brightly. She flicked her short brown hair out of her face from when in her fall it had completely covered it. She then started blowing at the little fragments of baby hair that always seemed to fall into her face no matter what she did. Her bright green eyes lit up as she turned and saw the eerie building a hundred meters or so away.

'Ooh! Creepy! Can we go in? Can we? Can we? Can we?'

'…She's excited about this?' Orion asked blankly.

'The complete opposite of you, can't you feel the chemistry?' Lyra asked.

'Huh?' Ally asked completely confused, her head tilting on the side, which instantly made the layer of fuzz flop into her face and she irritably started blowing at it again.

Orion however, knew exactly what Lyra was implying, so he changed the subject, 'We might as well go in, all of us are here now.'

'Actually there's one more person we have to wait for,' Lyra said boredly.

'What? You actually convinced one of the others to come?' Orion asked, 'After the speech Jay and Raven gave off I thought there was no way in hell-'

'Not exactly from our group Orion.'

'You have friends outside it? Since when?'

'That is just rude.'

'Does anyone else hear that?' Seb asked, whose head had started twisting around like a prairie dog.

Ally's eyes widened and she started looking slightly scared, while Lyra and Orion almost seemed to be preparing for an explosion of some kind, but then they noticed a single beam of light coming towards them. And there was a sudden rev of an engine, and then the sound of skidding, and barely three feet from the side of Orion's car, a sleek, black, expensive looking motorcycle pulled up, freaking out Ally so much that she jumped straight into Orion's arms Scooby Doo style.

Lyra and Seb started laughing again, as Orion awkwardly looked at Ally, 'Ah… can I put you down now?'

'But you're comfy,' Ally said in the tone of a five year old.

But that was when the two people got off the motorcycle, which instantly put Lyra on guard, as she observed for a second and then snapped loudly, 'Mina! What the hell is he doing here?!'

A girl who'd been riding on the back of the motorcycle pulled off a hot pink helmet, her long blonde hair falling straight out of it and falling instantly to her thighs, before offering an awkward smile and saying, 'Well, I needed a lift.'

'Mina!' Lyra roared.

Mina's grey eyes blinked at Lyra, an amused smirk flooding across her face, seeming to have the air of someone who'd set this up on purpose knowing that neither party would be happy about it. She was tall, slim and curvy, seeming to exude confidence and cheer. Her clothes clearly labelled her as the sort of person who cared about her appearance, as well as the makeup she was wearing, it wasn't too much, but it was clear that she was wearing some. She flicked a strand of the ridiculously long blonde hair behind her ear and tried to look innocent.


'Ah… Lyra?' Orion tried to interrupt, who was awkwardly holding Ally still, and glancing at Seb who was starting to approach him looking slightly nervous.

'Not now Orion!'

But that was when the other rider pulled off his helmet and with an almost signature smirk, which instantly caused Seb to completely run behind Orion, he said, 'Well someone's whipped.'

Orion glared straight at the boy before saying quite calmly, 'At least my nose isn't sitting on the other side of my face.'

'Huh?' Ally asked.

'I'll explain later now shush,' he muttered.

The boy's extremely dark blue eyes surveyed the rather ridiculous group that stood before him, seeming almost amused by the situation rather than angry like Lyra was. He was half sitting on the seat of the motorcycle, the black helmet tucked under his arm, seeming to bring an almost natural "I own this place" look to the situation. Every piece of clothing he was wearing looked expensive, from the leather jacket to the wrist watch, and he seemed to exude an air of cockiness and arrogance. His hair was dark, messy and a little bit curly, and much to Lyra's annoyance, not overlong to the point that she could get annoyed and start cutting it.

His eyes were fixed on Lyra's glare at him before stating, 'Well I see you've brought the ensemble.'

Lyra flat out ignored him and said to Mina, 'Why the hell did you bring him!? You have your own car!'

'…Well… Dad confiscated my keys?' Mina offered.

'You're lying Mina! I know when you're lying!'

'Ah… Well… You see…' Mina stuttered looking awkward.


'Yes Lyra?' Mina asked with the tone of someone talking to an angry mother.

'Oh forget it… Toby, leave. Now.'

'You know what? Just because you asked…' Toby said almost kindly, walking over to her and then barely three centimetres from her face he said his tone changing automatically, 'Definitely not.'

'Leave now, or your body will never be found.'

'Why? Will you have eaten it?'

'Stop being such a smart ass!'

'Lyra, can you try to see this from my point of view? I just had a half hour drive, with Mina babbling in my ear about how this is going to go horribly wrong-'

'I would love to see something from your point of view but I can't seem to get my head that far up your ass!' Lyra yelled.

'Okay Lyra, calming down,' Orion sighed as he placed Ally back on the ground, who seemed slightly disappointed.

'No, why should I?!' Lyra yelled.

'Because the headless horseman is out hunting. Lyra, just calm down,' Orion said blankly.

'Headless horseman?! Where?!' Mina yelled.

'You have seen too many movies Mina,' Toby said exasperatedly.

'And whose fault is that?' Mina snapped.

'Yours, I didn't say you had to stay.'

'While knowing I'd take it as a challenge!'

'I still didn't force you.'

'Yeah but you're a manipulative bastard,' Lyra cut across Mina's next response, 'Can we just go in before one slash all of us kills Nudnik?'

'Are you sure that going into the base is going to make it any better?' Orion sighed.

Thanks to Angelsweepbeforetheyfly, our new better reader, because we all know that we need one.