Chapter 12: Out of Hiding

Sunday passed quickly and before everyone knew it they were heading to school Monday morning. Michelle was actually glad to head back to school that is until one thought continuously raced through her head. She still didn't know if she and Jake were actually officially together. Slapping a hand to her forehead she exclaimed. "Why does this have to be so difficult?!"

Lynne could barely sleep the night before. Nightmares still plagued her and they seemed to be getting worse and more intense. Every time she closed her eyes she would be in a new setting but they ended pretty much the same way. At one point she felt something grab her wrist in an ice cold grip. Looking up she came face to face with Eli, his usual green eyes were black but they looked to be burning like a flame. It scared her because he wasn't the Eli she knew but at the same time it felt so real she didn't know what to believe.

Taylor couldn't sleep that night either, but for an entirely different reason. She had been listening to music and the song 'Fall' by Justin Bieber came on, catching her interest. As a dancer she couldn't help herself she started making her own choreography to it. Making due with the small space of her bedroom she practiced more arm movements and figured she could work out everything else later. She was so excited about the dance she didn't fall asleep until five in the morning getting only an hour of sleep until she had to shower and get ready for school. Deciding it would be a lazy day she wore a pair of worn in jeans and a baggy T-shirt. "Ok...not doing that again." She yawned as she braided her hair.

Tristan ran a hand through his curly hair, shaking it out from his eyes keeping it in the messy style he loved. As he walked into the kitchen he saw his brother sitting at the counter eating his breakfast. "We don't have practice after school do we?" He asked grabbing a bowl to the cabinet.

"No, coach gave us the day off, why?" Nathan muttered.

"I'm gonna ask Lynne if we can work on the pictures after school. We haven't really done anything with them, or at least I haven't. She's been doing all the work."

"Well today's your only chance, after today we have practice every day and our first official meet is on Friday night."

"And it starts." Tristan sighed as he poured his cereal.

Michelle sat in her car patiently waiting for one of her friends to arrive before walking to their first period class. Just as she was about to call someone she noticed Taylor's car park beside her. Grabbing her bag she climbed out to see how tired her friend looked. "Whoa...you look like you've seen better days."

"Thanks." Taylor scoffed. "I was busy last night."

"Doing what?"

"Working on a new dance, its not even close to being finished but I really like how its going."

As the girls walked up the sidewalk Michelle noticed Jake and Lucas walking out of the gym but they didn't seem to notice them. When Michelle didn't say anything to get Jake's attention Taylor asked. "Is everything all right?"

"Yeah, why?"

"Why didn't you call out to Jake?"

Michelle frowned. "We kissed at the party."

Now Taylor was confused. "And that's bad?"

"It is when he has yet to ask me to be his girlfriend."

Taylor chuckled. "Michelle, he's a guy, sometimes you need to spell it out for them. Just come right out and talk to him about it."

"No, no, I don't want to seem desperate."

"You have a plan then?"

Biting her bottom lip Michelle groaned. "Not at the moment, but I will, just you wait."

Taylor rolled her eyes as Michelle headed towards her locker. "This is going to go well." She whispered before going to her own locker.

In her first couple classes Lynne couldn't focus but not because of the usual reasons. Eli's demonic form swirled in her mind and it still sent chills down her spine. She always believed her dreams meant something or they came from a real place but what could this one mean? She was fairly positive Eli wasn't some sort of demon in human form but still what exactly was going on. It was affecting her sleeping schedule and also her focus on everything else in her life.

Hearing the bell she was pulled away from her thoughts and finally it was time for lunch. Gathering up her stuff she heard her phone vibrate with a new text message. Seeing Eli's name on the screen made her stomach drop. Deciding to ignore it she stuffed her phone in her bag and headed to the cafeteria.

Taylor was resting her head on top of her bag when she heard someone sit down next to her. "You all right?" Nathan asked, a concerned look on his face.

"Yeah, just tired," She yawned. "I was working on a new dance last night."

He nodded his head, handing her his apple. "So when will I see it?"

"Probably not for a while," She chuckled. "I want it to be perfect but I'm practicing a lot of moves I haven't really done before."

"I can't even get a little peak?" He whispered leaning in close to her.

Blushing Taylor looked down at her lap. "No, sorry babe."

"Fine, I'll just wait, but every dance I see you do is amazing I'm sure this one will be too."

Smiling she leaned over to rest her head on his broad shoulder. Just as Nathan leaned down to kiss her they heard, "Are we interrupting anything?"

Breaking apart they saw Lucas, Jake, and Tristan standing around their table. "Not at all." Nathan grumbled as Taylor sat up straight.

The rest of the day was nothing exciting. After school Lynne and Tristan went to her house so she could show him the ropes when it came to the yearbook pictures. Michelle and Taylor had to go to the community center for classes while the rest of the boys decided to go to Connor's house to hang out for a little while. Walking through the front door Connor didn't know how his mother would act but was relieved when he saw her standing in the kitchen. "Hey boys." She smiled.

"Hey mom," Connor mumbled. "We'll be in the basement if you need us."

"Ok, if you guys are staying for dinner just let me know." Joan explained as she grabbed a bottle of wine out of the cabinet.

Connor frowned slightly as his friends made their way downstairs. "How is she doing?" Jake asked plopping down on a huge blue bean bag.

"Depends on the day, she still checks news reports from back home almost every day." Connor explained untangling the cords to the Xbox 360. "There's still no sign of him."

Joan stood at the top of the basement stairs, listening to her son talking to his friends. At the mention of her husband she felt the tears sting her eyes. No matter how much time had passed she still felt a wave of pain whenever he was brought up in conversation. Lightly closing the door she walked over to the couch, her glass of wine in hand. As she sipped on her drink she stared at the family picture hanging on the wall, her, Roger, and Connor, the spitting image of both of them. Feeling the tears sliding down her cheeks she said an internal prayer, just like she had for many months, that her husband will come home and her family be complete.

Lynne brushed her hair out of her eyes, keeping them fixed on her computer screen. "So you just pick and choose which ones you want?" She heard Tristan ask.

Nodding her head she sighed. "I take so many pictures though its hard to just pick one or two but I rather have too many pictures than not enough."

"I understand that, any idea how many you have right now?"

"Well I took forty at the swim meet and about twenty the first day of school. Why do you think I have my camera on me at all times? I spend half the day waiting for the perfect picture opportunity."

Tristan laughed, his green eyes seemed to sparkle. Lynne smiled, trying her best not to blush around him. Even if she didn't know a lot about him she knew he was one of the cutest guys she had ever met. "Do you have any favorites?"

"Uh..." She mumbled looking at the folders. "Have to say this one of Kendall..." She smirked seeing the photo of Kendall with a huge soda stain on her perfect white sweater. Lynne captured the moment of Kendall's Diet Coke spewing all over her at lunch a few days ago.

"That's pretty good." Tristan chortled.

Biting her bottom lip Lynne sighed. "Isn't she your girlfriend?"

"What? Hell no, she thought she was until I finally told her I wasn't interested. I tried being nice for the longest time but she just never took a hint."

Lynne nodded but inside she couldn't contain her excitement. Even though she was happy she felt a little guilty. Here she was thinking this guy was with another girl so she wouldn't even get close to him but that whole time he was with no one. "Lynne? You in there?" Snapping out of her thoughts she saw his green eyes fixed on her.

"Huh? Oh yeah, sorry, I guess my mind was just somewhere else." She yawned.

"You all right? You seem tired."

All day Lynne had tried to push away her exhaustion but slowly it started catching up with her. "I guess I'm a little tired. Its gonna be an early night for me."

"Good." He said resting his hand on her knee.

His eyes were fixed on her computer but all Lynne could concentrate on was his hand on her knee. He didn't move it as he looked at the pictures. 'There goes not blushing in front of him,' She thought as she felt her cheeks grow hot.

Lauren stood at the front of her class watching everyone like a hawk. She wasn't going to pick the talent show team for a while but she wanted to make sure everyone could keep up. Almost all of her students could pick up choreography fairly quick but she did have a few that she could tell were struggling. "All right everyone take five." She smiled pausing the music.

Michelle waved a hand in front of her face, trying to cool herself off. Usually dance practice was a little easier for her but she figured she had gotten so accustomed to their simple dances it wasn't a challenge for her but now she had to work at it. "So the talent show is next weekend, there's no way I'm gonna be ready by then." She told Taylor who was sitting down at the back of the studio.

"What are you talking about? You seem to be catching on a lot faster." Taylor sighed pulling her blonde hair up into a messy bun.

"I am but the songs are so fast I can't keep up."

Lauren overheard the conversation and thought another song would be just the thing to help Michelle get her footing in class. When everyone came back in she clapped her hands together. "Ok guys, I still have you here for half an hour so how would you like to see a new dance?"

Everyone looked at each other with confused looks. Just when they were starting to master one dance Lauren would start to teach them another. "Are we done with 'Swagger Jagger?'" Someone asked.

"No we're not, you guys I want to have a lot of dances to choose from for the show next Saturday. I want that crowd to be excited. I'm gonna introduce you to some dances now and then within these next two weeks we will pick and choose what we like. Sound good?"

"You're the teacher." Michelle laughed making everyone else chuckle.

"You're exactly right, now come on, y'all are about to catch Bieber fever." Lauren smirked hitting play, the smooth beat of 'Boyfriend' began to play making the girls smile and the boys groan.

At Connor's house the boys had settled on playing Call of Duty and NCAA football on Connor's Xbox, something they always did when they were bored. Nathan sat on the old blue couch watching the games but his mind began to wander. Connor didn't like talking about his dad, and they never pushed him to but they were going to have to hear the story sooner or later. When he noticed Connor turn the game off he figured it would be the perfect opportunity. 'Here goes nothing,' He thought sitting up on the couch.

Nathan bit his bottom lip trying to figure out what to say. "What exactly happened that night? You told us Roger left and never came back but...you never really explained everything else."

Lucas and Jake looked at Nathan surprised. 'He's gonna do this now?' Lucas thought, his eyes wide.

Connor knew this time was coming, he wished it would never come but he had to get it off his chest. Leaning his arms on his knees Connor felt a hand placed on his shoulder. "You don't have to talk about it if you're not ready."

For so long he'd spent every night thinking about those last few hours he spent with his dad. He spent hours going over every single detail. After taking a deep breath he opened his mouth. "I got home from swim practice right at dusk. I saw my parents talking in the kitchen, which was nothing unusual. When I asked them what was going on my dad just brushed me off, something he never did." He scratched his head thinking back. "I do remember how worried my mom looked, that sticks out. I went to my room, told them I was going to do homework but I kept my door open to hear what they were saying."

"Then what?" Lucas asked.

"Dad left, he said, 'This has got to stop.' Then he just walked out the door. I thought maybe everything would just end right then and there. My dad was strong but...he never came home and mom reported him missing the next morning."

"And now we're here..." Jake muttered knowing Roger's disappearance was one of this biggest influences in the families moving.

"Well if we stayed who knows what would happen." Lucas sighed.

The room fell silent, no one really knowing what to say. Clenching his fists Nathan said. "We need to get stronger. If we have any chance in life we need to grow and get better control."

"So what do you suggest?" Connor asked.

Nathan looked down at his hands but soon her looked at his friends, his eyes black as midnight. "I think you know the answer to that. I'm not hiding anymore."

Nodding their heads the boys' eyes morphed from their normal colors to black, matching Nathan's. The tide was turning and the boys all agreed they were going to try to get their lives back. Even if it meant fighting the unknown for it.

Like it? Getting juicy, hope you all enjoyed :)