Hey there :) enjoy another chapter! Happy black friday!


*Highway*

The tan leather seats were just as cold as the outside of the brown van. Rain was beating down the windows with a gentle tap. The rhythm was the perfect lullaby for little children. One child in particular. Sarah Gano had just reached the tender age of six and had fallen fast asleep. Her twin brothers Alleo and Linus were fighting as usual. Dog fights—little boys love them. God knows why.

Sam, the oldest, was trying to keep peace between the eight year olds. Sam was eleven, and he was one of those natural born leader type people.

Sarah was most likely asleep because she was tired of nobody paying attention to her. She wasn't the youngest anymore—in fact, the family was just now driving home from the hospital with the newest addition to the family, a brother named Vincent.

Sarah despised Vincent since the moment he was born. All he ever did was cry. Sherry Gano complained that none of her kids ever cried in one year as much as Vincent did on his first day of life. He too, like Sarah, had finally drifted into slumber.

"I've never been so happy!" Said Sherry to Shawn. "It's a miracle!"

"And after all we've been through." Shawn smiled in return.

"Yes, we've finally—"

Out of the blue, a crash evoked and the van was forced to a halt in the most unpleasant and unprecedented of ways. One second, the car was above the air and the next, it smashed against the ruthless ground. Sarah and the baby snapped awake.

Linus was panicking and Alleo was hyperventilating. Sarah started to cry just like her little baby brother. She cried louder just to outdo him. The rain pounded hard on the brown van now.

"Mom and dad are asleep." Sam's eyes swelled. "They don't look so good."

Sarah tried to sneak a peek.

"Don't look now, Sarah. They're dead." Alleo said.

Sarah sobbed violently.

"No they're not." Sam said fiercely. It was rather more of a hope than a fact. He instinctively put his hands on their chests. "They're still breathing, but barely."

"What do we do, Sam?" Linus was so worried.

"Yeah, Sam. What?" Alleo seemed a tad more calm than his twin.

"Suck it up, fur ball." Sam said to Linus, who instantly stopped his fuss. "All this hullabaloo isn't helping. We need to call the emergency."

"The EMERGENCY?!" Linus shouted.

"Hold him still." Sam said to Alleo. "This is an emergency. And we need the help of 911."

"911? But mom and dad said never to call—"

"Unless it's an emergency. And it is. So we're going to call the emergency. Here, Alleo, help me find mom and dad's pocket phones. Linus, you watch the babies." Sam ordered.

Linus stopped sniffling and picked up the crying Vincent.

Babies? Sarah growled. "I'm not a baby." She said.

"Sarah, hold my hand." Linus ignored her.

"No." Sarah said defiantly.

"Now is not the time to have a meltdown! I need to hold your hand to keep you safe." He said gently. He thought he knew how to talk to this kid, but he was wrong. "Sarah, come back here."

Sarah climbed into the very back of the van where the spare tire, stroller and baby carrier were kept. Also stored back there was father's silver briefcase.

Sarah had always liked that object, perhaps because she was told never to touch it. She wasn't even allowed within one yardstick of it. It was shinier before, but had dulled over time. Still, it was the same color of her eyes. Of all their eyes. Well, Sarah hadn't gotten the chance to see Vincent's eyes but it's not like she wanted to.

"Sarah!" Linus called. He had to be quieter now because Vincent had fallen back asleep.

Sarah tried as hard as she could but she just couldn't get the suitcase to open. She was dying to know what was inside. Nobody was paying attention to her. She heaved the briefcase over the row of seats, unlocked the door, and slipped out of the van dragging the case behind her. Linus had to set the baby down and chase after Sarah. It's about time he noticed!

"Where did she go?" He walked in circles twice around the van. "Sarah! Sam's not gonna be happy! Please get back into the safety of the van!" Linus was hoping at the very least for Sarah to shout back something defiant like, "You'll never catch me!" but instead the whole world was silent. The rain had died down a bit. Still Linus got soaked. All he could do was stand there and listen for some response.

"What are you doing?" Alleo came down.

"Sarah ran out there—somewhere." Linus started going for the woods.

"Wait! Don't go in there! You'll never find your way out."

"Let's ask Sam what to do."

"Sam!" The twins yelled together.

Sam had found mom's small phone and called 911. "It's an emergency and you're the right people to call. Me and my younger siblings are trapped on this street. Our parents are both unconscious."

"How old are you, son?"

"I'm eleven."

"Do you know your approximate location?"

"N-no sir." Sam's voice was breaking.

"What's your name?"

"Samuel Gano."

There was an eerie silence from the other end. Sam could swear it almost sounded like there was a tape recorder playing—but that couldn't be true.

"Are you still there, sir?"

"Yes. We're tracking the location of your phone right now. Be there in approximately eleven minutes."

"Thank you."

"Would you like someone to stay on the line with you on the line until we show up?"

"No. Thank you, sir." The officer hung up. Sam answered the call of his brothers. "Guys, get back in the van! What are you doing?"

"Sarah ran out there!" Linus's trembling started back up again.

Sam scanned the forest, er, what little of it he could. He could not see beyond the first line of trees. "Sarah!" He screamed as loud as he could. "Sarah?"

No response.

"We're just going to leave you here…" Alleo said in a voice he hoped might tempt her to come back.

"Which direction did she run off in?" Sam asked.

"I don't know." Linus said softly.

"She probably ran off towards the highway." Sam deducted. "Since there's at least some vague lights in the distance."

"Yeah." The twins agreed thoughtfully.

"Linus, go back in the van. Alleo, you're with me." Sam said.

"Why?" Linus whined.

Sam rolled his eyes. "Do I really need to say it?"

"Yes." Both twins said, but with different tones.

"You're a scaredy cat!"

"Aw." Linus obeyed.

Sam and Alleo began their tread off towards the highway. The walk was a bit melancholy but at least they weren't lonely. Cars whirred by faintly in the distance. A light mist lingered by the pale yellow lights of the highway Alleo and Sam were standing on a patch of wet grass. The smell of mildew was strong.

"There's blood by the highway." Alleo noticed.

Sam could see his breath. It was so cold out, but he was always so warm. "That's blood all right."

"And that? Over there? Caught in the hedges?"

"That's not hedges, that's a wire fence. And yes it's certainly someone's brown hair."

"You mean it's Sarah's brown hair." Linus dared to touch it with his bare hands. Yep, that was Sarah's all right! Thick and tangled, almost with a fur-like appeal.

That creeping thought burned at the bottom of Sam's tummy but he didn't want to admit it.

"She got hit by a car and was smashed into a billion pieces!" Alleo sobbed.

Sam started to cry a little too. He was the "cry silently" type of guy. He held his brother's hand for comfort's sake. "That theory seems logical enough. Let's get back to the car."

"Okay."

When they got back, they explained to Linus what had happened.

"Poor little sister." Linus cried pathetically.

"I won't let anything happen to the rest of you. Ever." Sam made a pact. "So don't worry. I'm going to make a real effort from now on. We've just been given the gift of having a new sibling. I know Vincent can never replace Sarah, but we can still protect him."

The paramedics came. None of the kids even got a chance to talk about their sister. Adults nowadays are so cruel. They never take time to listen to children because they're always so busy. Busy, so what? Adults should always make time for children no matter what the case.

Sam sighed. At the very least there wouldn't be a big embarrassing investigation.

The adults were rushed to the emergency room and the children, since they were seemingly all right, were stuffed away into a small waiting room with a little old lady that wouldn't even let them leave to go to the bathroom. She was holding baby Vincent. Sam, Alleo and Linus sat as far away from her as possible.

"Excuse me," A nurse poked into the room, "Sam, Alleo, and Linus, your parents have been diagnosed with chronic amnesia. They're going to need your help to remember their lives. Once you remind them of certain things, that should trigger memories and soon they'll be back to normal, okay?"

Sam and the twins nodded.

"Do you know what chronic amnesia means?" The male nurse talked to Sam as if he was much younger.

"Yes, I know." Sam deadpanned.

"Okay them." The nurse smiled in a comforting way. "In a couple minutes I'll bring you in to see them okay?"

"OKAY." Said the three boys in unison as the nurse left.

Sam turned around instantly. "Remember my promise to you?" He whispered. The twins nodded. "Well now you two must promise me something."

"What?" the twins chorused.

"You must promise never to mention Sarah's name outside of the three of us. She never existed."

"Why?" chimed Linus.

"Because it would break our parents' hearts." Sam decided.

Alleo looked to Linus, who passed the look on to Sam. "It's a deal." They agreed.