Vera Levick had been practically contemplating life or death. It would help if she could stop with the dramatic thoughts of an an overly handsome doctor.

Dr. Ali. The name had gave her chills. It wasn't like her to have to tell herself he wasn't worth the agony. No, he's just a handsome, brilliant and successful Doctor.

Vera had the scene of a few minutes ago replay in her head one. last. time. She didn't want it to, but it just came onto her, like Dr. Ali's hands when he wasn't in surgery.

"Oh, Vera?" she heard his velvety voice accompaning a light hearted laugh. "I forgot I'm spending the evening with Candice."

Candice, of course, a beautiful green eyed blonde sitting across from him. She must have been perfect. Rich and flirty, a model to top it all off. He looked as if he went out of his way to impress her like she even gave a damn.

The bitter sight of them together reminded her she lost about 4.00$ on a hot chocolate she left on one of the tables. Money was that tight...Oh well, it's not like I'd drink it anyway, she sighed.

Vera snapped out of the thought and reached in her white lab coat. Her hands grabbed a necklace with a small glass pendant.

Thank the heavens for the relief she felt as her hands fiddeled with it. She did this quite often when her mind was all over the place like it was now.

The wintery night upon her was certainly cold. Her legs felt frozen as they plowed through the snowy Alaskan streets and she hadn't even been out that long.

The nagging slush had gotten soaked in her boots and the tips of her toes felt frost bitten. Thank God home was only a short ways a way.

Home. Was it really home? she asked, breathing in the dry air. Did I call it home to cover up for the mess it usually was? Fighting and struggling between her crazy roomate, Jane.

Where do people go now a days to free their mind? She asked. Where do they go when they need things like hope? Wouldn't life be simple if only hope had come in cans at the grocery store? Especially if they were on sale, like, 2 for five dollars.

Who was she kidding, though. If Hope were sold, it would never be that cheap.

Sure, once in a while there was hope lurking in the corners of every place she went. Even now, as she glanced at an old couple helping each other walk to their car. But only once in a while would this hope would reveal itself, and lately, that wouldn't be enough.

She held on tighter to the necklace as her knees suddenly grew weak. Weak enough to melt into the snow in a dark alley way. Tears she fought to keep in streamed down her heavy red cheeks, and she wasn't sure why.

Was it just the pressure of medical school, the lonliness, or the fact she felt something was missing in her young life? She knew for certain it wasn't because of a lousy date, though she'd like to put it to blame to keep things a bit more simple...

"I don't think we should do this tonight," she heard a deep voice echo further down the darkness of the alley way.

The man, whoever he was, had been holding something in his hands. It seemed to be glowing while he spoke on the phone. The sight was very peculiar.

"Don't you understand? Tomorow is too soon," the man continued in his, strange, hurried voice.

For some unknown reason, a bright light flashed from the glass pendent she held onto. Vera had seen this happen only a few times before and everytime it did, it happened to be a sign danger was looking for her. Either way, it didn't fully make any sense that it could possibly light up. It was just glass.

She heard the man suddenly stopped talking. Though she could not see his eyes, she could certainly feel them intently watching her.

Well thats...strange..

"Vera," she heard a voice. She winced. "What the hell are you doing?"

Her eyes peaked from her shaking hands. On her other side was...Ali.

He took her arm and harshly lifted her up from the snow.

"Are you crazy?" he grimmaced, his voice stern and steady. He must have gone threw this a million times before. "What we have is nothing serious, you agreed to that."

Vera wiped the snow off her white coat and looked at him just as stiff and stern.

"This isn't like you," Ali sighed. "At all."

Vera wanted to roll her eyes at him. As if he knew me. He could shove his words...somewhere else.

"Well, Doctor, I'm fine," Vera smirked, suddenly tearless and calm.

"Vera...I," he started.

"I love how you're so quick to assume this is about you," Vera mentioned.

She gave him one last hard look and continued walking home. That would be the last time she thought of him or had any pity for herself for the rest of the night. She had better things to think about now, like, a strange conversation and glowing lights emitting from her necklace.

Her appartment building showed it's self under the gently falling snow. The moon shined bright between passing clouds, taunting her that it was free in the sky amongst the stars, living a life with no feelings or regret.

The mere sight of the vast heavens brought her face to flush. She could feel something in the air, brushing up against her skin, that something rather...hopeful was coming for her.

Inside the building she climbed the stairs to the third floor. Her eyes dashed across the numbers 626 on a door a badly painted green. Her fingers, still frozen and numb, took out the keys and unlocked the door where inside it was completely dark and quiet.

She snuck threw the small living room to her own room, more like the size of a closet. On the wall was a very large window over looking the city. The hospital was always in plain veiw, sometimes taunting her even more than the everlasting skies had.

She crashed on her bed, heart thumping like wild horses in the west. Her fingers still continued to fiddle with the necklace.

But before her eyes could close for just a moment, she heard the door slam open. Her body shot right back up.

The door to her room burst open. The lights turned on.

"Vera?!" Jane exclaimed as she came flying threw the door. Slathered on her face was the biggest grin Vera had ever seen.

"You look miserable. Had a bad day?" Jane squealled as she thumped on the bed next to Vera.

Vera sunk her head even lower.

"Oh, Vera, forget Dr. Ali or whatever," Jane said. "Someone we haven't seen in a long time wants to see us."

Vera lifted her head again. Her eyes seemed to widen with a new glow.

"How about you get ready? We are going to a very nice party," Jane gleamed as she bounced up and danced over to Vera's dresser, pulling out her nicest clothes she wore just the other weekend on a date with Ali.

"No, Jane," Vera growled. "I'm not going. I can't. I have so much studying to do."

"That's exactly why you need to come," Jane snapped.

"Who's party?" Vera asked.

Jane pulled off Vera's white jacket, still stained with a bit of blood from the days work.

"This isn't a typical college party if that's what your thinking," Jane mentioned.

Oh please. It is.

"What kind of party are you talking about?" Vera demanded to know as she let down her hair.

"A party where we have to look our best," Jane babbled. "Take a shower if you need too, just get ready and look nice."

"JANE!" Vera screamed, her face now red as she stood shaking. "What the hell are you talking about?"

"Vera, what's gotten into you?" Jane asked shrugging her shoulders.

"Nothing...it's very complex," Vera scowled. "You don't understand. Hell, I don't even understand."

Jane lowered her head, pondering on what to say that could convince Vera to come. What would be more exciting that a party at a mansion? Her cheast heaved in and out, taking a deep breath.

"It's a glass selling party. It'll be very fancy and artsy. I think you need to go," Jane mentioned.

"Expensive glass. That's exactly what we need in our lives right now," Vera sighed. "Since when did you go to fancy sales parties anyway?"

"Would it make you feel any better if I told you a very, intriging young man named Stephan Farlan invited us?" Jane muttered.

Vera's jaw dropped a little.

Stephan Farlan, your adverage, silly boy they both used to know in their old neighboorhood back in Nome. Vera was almost ready to faint to the floor. She had last seen him the day they had given her the necklace. The day he moved with little warning.

"What did you say?" Vera gasped. She grabbed on to her necklace again, not believing what she thought she heard. As a matter of fact, her heart practically stopped all together. The name she spoke was enough to take away all thoughts of Ali.

"Stephan," Jane said the name again, now opening her eyes. "He's back."

"Stephan," Vera barely whispered to herself. Her hands now covered her mouth.

"He's not what he used to be," Jane hushed after she nodded her head, in her voice was a new seriousness. "Forget everything you knew about him. Forget the boy who ran around town, barely getting by in school. Forget that. Everything about him has changed."

"He's rich now," Jane uttered. "I mean filthy. Rich."

"He could pay off all our student loans in an hour," Jane bursted.

So, we want to take his money? was Vera's first thought.

"That's not the point," Jane continued. "He invited me and you to his party tonight at his mansion."

"What? Why?" Vera choaked as her throat tightened. Mansion? Since when did he get a mansion? He's been poor as hell all his life.

Vera almost felt like she couldn't breathe. The only question she could think of now was why he had forgot about her all this time. I guess forgetting about people was easier for everyone else but Vera. She never seemed to entirely forget people, or let them go.

"We can ask him everything we want when we get there," Said Jane. "I wanted to make this a surprise for you, hun. Forget about everything for just a minute."

No, I can't believe this,Vera kept saying as she raced for a towel. When she stood in the shower, washing her hair as fast as she could, at times she felt like she could faint. She almost cut herself from her shaking hand five times with the razor.

Flashes of the boy started to seep into her bewindled mind like the soap on her skin.

There he was. Just a boy. Copper colored hair and blue eyes. He was facinated by a clumsy, crazy, flawed girl such as Vera. She wasn't sure what he exactly saw in her but she was thankful for it.

Vera remembered one time he had cut himself on a piece of glass.

"Doctor Levick, I'm in need of your help," Stephan asked.

Vera excitedly took care of him with bandages and such from her purse. She loved it when someone called her doctor. Even at twelve.

Vera snapped out of the memory and quickly blew dry her hair. She threw on a decent outfit. A fancy black shirt with lighter pants to reflect her mood.

She took one last look in the mirror once the fog had left it, reveling eager eyes with a bit of eyeliner and a tinge of hope.

"Ready?" Jane whispered as she gently took Vera's trembling hand.

Vera softly smiled and nodded her head.

What were the odds that such a horrible night could turn into one of that silly thing called hope? The thought of Stephan, an old friend and lover, coming in contact with her and Jane was almost as unbelivable as him becoming rich.

The two of them jumped into the car and down the slushy streets. Vera still had no idea where they were going. Somewhere South of Anchorage city.

As they drove Vera was now squeezing onto the neacklace. Another memory came to her again. A more gloomy one, when has was packing his bags at his mothers house, more like shed.

"Where are you going?" Vera asked.

"To my dads," Stephan sighed, hiding his redenend face.

"Will you be back?" Vera asked, heartbroken.

"It's very far away," Stephan frowned with glassy eyes.

She could feel he was scared.

"I'm going to miss you...I hope you like it there...wherever it is," she muttered.

"Africa," he whispered with a tear.

The memories fadded away when they pulled into a long, never ending drive way where two black gates came together.

"What the f...?" Vera gasped under her breath. She burried herself deeper into the car seat, her eye's wide open.

Jane pressed a button on a speaker system. There came a ringing for a while until a deep, familar voice answered.

"Vera? Jane?" the familar voice asked.

"Yes," Jane giggled. "It's us."

There was a pause of unbelief between them and the speaker.

"Go right a head," the voice finally said as the black gates opened.

They started to drive the long path up to a white mansion. Vera was still frozen in her seat just by the mere sound of his voice.

This couldn't be happening to me, Vera kept thinking as she stared at the nice cars lined up all around. It was so quiet you could hear the music from the house playing softly all the way out to were they were.

Both Jane and Vera's jaws dropped as the sat in the car, eying the home.

"How? What?" Vera gasped, holding onto her heart.

"I'm thinking the same thing," Jane replied, her mouth dry.

"Jane, if he came back and was here all this time, why did he ignore me for this long?" Vera whispered sharply. "Do you think he missed us? Do you think he cares about us anymore? Jane, you don't know how freaked out I am over this."

"Calm down Vera. Maybe he just wanted to impress you," Jane plainly suggested.

Vera took a heavy sigh, staring at Jane with disbelief. Maybe it was true.

"But it all doesn't make sense," Vera gaped as they got out of the car.

"Vera, calm down, okay?" Jane whispered as they walked towards the home. "Don't freak him out."

"Me? Freak him out? No...I couldn't," Vera hushed. "If anything he'll freak me out."

"Vera, listen to me. I know how you get around guys sometimes. This time, act somewhat normal," Jane uttered.

Vera's face grew red. Me? Weird around guys? Jane don't flatter yoursel, that sounds more like a trait of yours.

They were speechless as they timidly ambled up to the entry way of the house. Everything about it was new and prestine. The windows hadn't a spot on them. The rug beneath their feet had not a tinge of mud.

"Ready?" Jane asked Vera.

Vera gulped, trying hard to breathe again.

Jane opened the large doors.

Inside hung a magnificent shadelear, made up of the most beautiufoul glass they had ever seen. Millions of tiny shards of crystals came together just perfectly to create it.

Music flowed from top of the line stereo systems, endless silky marble lookings floors, a fire place or two, twirly stairs, many important looking people dressed in suits, large leather sofa's and endless tables of glass sets and crystal. By them were price tags.

Things...they are just things...Vera kept repeating in her head.

On the top of the never ending stairs a man dressed finely in black suit. He was ceraintly a china man. Tall with dark hair spiked just perfectly. He was very handsome to say the least. Vera noticed he was looking around, content as a king.

"Vera," She heard Stephans deep voice.

She could have fainted.

She turned to him, his crystal blue eye's twinkled underneath the shandelers.

Vera covered her mouth with her hands, her eyes wide. She had never seen him look the way he did now.

"You did good for yourself," Jane smiled, rather fakely, peering around.

"I have," Stephan said contently, still staring at Vera. Something in his voice had changed drastically. He sounded older and more sophisticated.

Stephan, please stop staring at me!

Vera was lost for many thoughts. Something in his eyes that were different. Something very cold. All of him, his presence, the way he stood, they way he smelled, the way he talked was not the same. He was not the silly boy she used to know, but very much a man.

"This is my home, at least, just for a little while" Stephan smiled, teeth still straight as can be. "Isn't it lovely?"

"Why don't you give us the grand tour?" Jane asked all 'I'm pretending not to freak out right now so maybe you'll think higher of me' like.

"Of course," Stephan smirked.

Vera could already feel her face turning a hot red. Something about him seemed...what was the word...snobby almost. He had a way of making her feel somewhat lower than she already felt, yet at the same time, astonished and curious and so mad she could scream at him if words could possibly come out.

"Well," he mentioned as he ran his fingers threw his dark hair. "I see someone's a little unhappy tonight."

Vera clentched her fists.

I wonder if she still wants to be a doctor? Stephan thought to himself. He tried to remember how much he once felt about her, but he couldn't. He kept looking at her, trying to understand her rather strange longing eyes.

We are simply strangers now Vera, he thought. You know nothing about me anymore.

Vera kept turning her head away from his continual unearving gazes. Her eyes became watery.

"Jane, why don't you go get a few drinks over on that table. I have plenty of orderves too," Stephan offered. "I wish to speak to Vera alone for just a moment."

Jane gave him a stunned look, "Of course," she piped as she headed over to the table.

"Come on, in here," Stephan said, outreaching his stiff arm over Vera's shoulders. They walked into another dinning room. There was a sliding door where no one else could see them.

"I notice you're upset," Stephan mentioned, his lifeless eyes looking into hers. "Please don't make a scene here, I need to make a good impression tonight."

"I'm fine...This is just all such a surprise to me. We haven't seen you in years," Vera stammered. Stephans eyes, somewhat hard like stone and disconected, still had her yearning for his friendship once again.

"We last seen each other so long ago, I just, I've never forgotten," Vera whispered as she mindlessly grabbed a hold of his arms.

Stephan tried to understand her, but all he could think is how she was making dents in a very expensice outfit with her nails.

Stephan lowered his head. His eyes remained still.

"I'm just in disbelief," Vera admitted.

oh no, he thinks I'm crazy.

"It's alright," Stephan finally muttered.

"I'm sorry, I must sound out of my mind," Vera huffed, now pacing back and forth. "Maybe I am."

"You're not," Stephan replied stifly. "Sometimes things like this can be hard to deal with, I'm sure."

Vera looked away from him, taking one last deep breath. She could feel the tears drying for good.

"Just put those feelings aside for now, will you?" Stephan asked. "I invited you here, so enjoy yourself. I thought a visit would do us some good, that's all."

Vera smiled a bit as she let her wondering eyes lock with his. It wasn't easy. She couldn't understand what was so different about them now. They were lacking so much emotion he used to be full of.

She began looking everywhere else, admiring all of the crystal glasses on almost everything. It was enchanting to say in the least.

Maybe it was money and objects that could take the life out of a person.

"I see you have a lot of glass," Vera awed, ambling up to the daziling, fragile tructures. "How beautiful..."

"Unbreakible glass from the finest crystal," the words slid perfectly from Stephans lips. "It's my specialty."

"How...spectacular," Vera said, her hands gently prancing over the glass.

"It was my fathers idea," Stephan said blantly.

"Yes...you must have found this in Africa?" Vera questioned.

"Vera, you know I never wanted to move. My father practically made me. I went on an expiditions there that my father had lead an exclusive team of... He's the one who brought me into this life," stephan admitted. "Though, that all must remain a secret. It's not like you'll be telling anyone who cares enough I suppose."

"Where did you go in Africa, extactly?" Vera questioned, lifting a brow.

Stephan simply smiled. A smile that could almost scare her.

"That I must never tell," he replied as his smile fadded.

"Where is your father now?" Vera asked.

"He's...no longer," Stephan sighed.

"I'm sorry," Vera whispered.

"It's fine. He left this life to me. I have no other choice that fufill what he needed to be done," Stepahan continued.

"You know, you aren't the boy I used to know," Vera mentioned, the words slipping from her lips without thought.

"You're right, I'm not," he agreed. "I've changed."

Vera looked up at him in a different way. Her look was curious as she set the glass back down.

"People change you know. Everything changes. You don't seem to get that," Stephan mentioned.

"I understand change," Vera muttered. "But what's happened to you is unexplainable."

"Drop the glass," Stephan suddenly ordered with a sly smile. "It won't break."

Vera looked to the glass for a moment before she pushed it hard to the wood floor. It crashed, but the fragile looking thing didn't break.

"What's it made of?" Vera asked, amused. She picked the glass back up.

In his poket he reached for a key. His long legs walked over to a china cabnet, where he unlocked a drawer and pulled out a glass fortune cookie.

"I think you'll really like this," he said, turning the glass cookie around in his hand.

Vera eyed it. Now he was just showing off. It looked like every other fortune cookie you would find at a chinese resturant, though made of glass and rather beautiful like everything else here.

"Take a look," he said, handing her the cookie.

"It's nice," she muttered, but it was just nice. She couldn't figure out what was so extavegant about it.

"Open it," he insisted. His eyes dazzled as the glass did.

Vera realized there in fact, was a way to make it open right in half. When she opened it, inside was a thin, long paper as you would find in any other fortune cookie, but no words.

"Pick up the paper," he said softly.

She picked it up. Instantly words started to form in blue ink.

Her eyes widened. There must have been a trick to it.

"What does it say?" Stephan asked.

"I am...in danger," Vera shuttered, her mouth gone dry. She must have reread the words five times over.

Stephan tried to look at it, even though he couldn't read it. The words only showed itself to the person who the fortune belonged too.

"May I?" he said, taking back the fortune.

He put it all back together again before he reopened it. His hands started to tremble as he backed away just a sliver. He glanced at Vera. A strange look formed in his eyes.

"What does it say?" Vera asked.

Stephan put the fortune cookie in his pocket.

Rapid knocking came on the door.

"Stephan, you in there?" a voice asked.

"It's Chi," Stephan said as he flew open the doors.

"We must talk," Chi said. He was the china man who was standing on the top of the stairs.

"Chi, I'd like you to meet Vera," Stephan said all business like.

"Nice to see you," Chi bowed quickly, unamused.

"I'll be back, Vera" Stephan said before he began to follow chi threw a crowd of people. "Look around, see if you'd like to make a purchase."

The words danger were all Vera could think of now as she strolled over the table lined with alchohol and mixers, and of course plenty of glasses made with the finest crystal. Jane was still there around a handful of people, talking away about the glass for sale.

"That was a while," Jane winked at Vera. "Have a few drinks, will you?"

"Are you going to buy any of this?" Vera said jokingly, taking a sip of some rather addicting tasting beveradge she wasn't sure what was.

"We can't afford it," Jane mused. "Though they sure are sparkly."

"You know I have never seen such fine crystal," one of the men around them started. "Now, where do you think it came from?"

"Somewhere remarkable I'd say," Jane said, holding up one of the glasses.

"It's processed in such a extravigant way, I'm surprised the prices aren't raised."

Vera glanced over at one of the small wine glasses. On it was a price tag that read Stephanchi Co. 588$

While Vera dazed threw the glass she noticed a man that wasn't talking to anyone. In more than one way he looked suspicious, pacing back and forth, eyeing the place like a theif.

Vera watched while he started walking upstairs, though there were no glass for sale there and no one was up there. He kept looking from side to side as he walked up them cautiously. He must have thought no one was looking.

"I'll be back," Vera muttered darting into the crowd.

She followed him up the steps to the second floor. It was all hallway after hall way. There were so many rooms it was unbelievable.

Where did he go?

She opened each door and peered inside. Suddenly a stiff hand grabbed a hold of her shoulder.

"Where are you going?" the man asked.

"I wanted to find the bathroom," Vera lied.

"I'll show you where it is," the guy said, leading her to one of the doors. When he opened it, she could see it was not a bathroom.

"Uh, wrong room," Vera said pushing him out of the way. He pulled her back into the room.

"We can just stay in here for a while if you like?" he offered.

He shut the door, locking them in.

Vera couldn't believe this was happeneing to her. She ran over to the window, looking down to a large balcony where Stephan and Chi were surrounded by a group of men.

"I don't want to hurt you, just tell me what you know about Stephan," the man said quietly, his teal eyes trapped hers.

"Listen, I want to know the same things you do," she said softly, looking deep into the blackness of his pupils.

The man turned in head away from her for a moment, taking in deep breaths. He wanted to say something, she knew it, but something in him wouldn't let him.

"What did Stephan show you in that room?"

Vera froze. She thought of the fortune cookie.

BAM! a gunshot sounded from somewhere in the house. Vera's eyes grew wide, her lips parted and her heart stopped.

Jane!

"I have to get my friend," Vera scowled, trying to push him away.

"She's fine, I promise," the man said, holding tighter onto her arms.

"No, let me go," Vera cried.

"Listen," the man whispered. "I want to help you."

Vera cringed.

"I'm a part of a team working for an a bad agency," he said. "They want to know what is in this glass. They want to know exactly where it came from."

"If your agenct is so bad, why are you in it?" Vera asked.

"Because. I want to stear my group away from Stephan," the man uttered.

Another gun shot went off. Vera winced.

"Okay, okay! Here's what I know, he was born in Nome, lived at his mom's in a cold house before he moved with his dad somewhere in Africa. I grew up with him. He was my best friend. Now will you let me go?" she begged. "I don't know anything about Stephan anymore. I wish I did, but I have no idea."

"I knew you knew something," he whispered, though no one was around to hear. "I want to keep his business going without the others interfearing. The only way to do that is to keep them away from him and the location where he founded the glass."

"Why should I trust you?" Vera asked.

I can't believe I even said all that. He'll kill me if he finds out.

Vera's eyes locked with his for a moment. He looked just as afraid as she did.

"What if I told you the glass is not something you come across everyday," the man whispered. "It holds a maluable power."

"What?" Vera gasped.

"If Stephan doesn't do something quick, he will wind up in the governments hands, or even worse, dead," he said, finally letting her arms go.

"I can't help you," vera uttered, moving her feet farther away from him.

"Don't worry, I'm sure we'll meet again," he muttered as she ran towards the door.

Vera dashed back down the stairs to a dark sea of fighting and destruction.

Vera searced for Jane's face, but it was impossible to see as everything had gone all dark. Maybe she went to find Stephan, on the balcony, Vera said to her self as she raced all around the house threw the crowds of people. It had to be somewhere.

"Everyone out of the house!" A shrill voice screamed. More gunshots sounded.

Finally she found it. Covered by large, heavy curtains in the kitchen was a slidding glass door. She pulled in open and walked out into the cold where Stephan and Chi stood frozen as the iceicles handing from the roof.

Vera grabbed onto Stephan.

"You need to do something," she stuttered.

"I wasn't expecting this," Stephan fretted.

More guns fired.

"They are only shooting to get the customers out of the house," Chi said. "They aren't actually shooting anyone."

"They'll shoot me if they get the chance," Stephan mentioned.

Suddenly Jane came threw the cutains, her red hair undone, the tiny bit of makeup she rarely wore were smudged around her fearful eyes.

Vera ran to her, squeezing her hand.

"I'm so glad you're alright," she gasped.

"Barely anyones left in the house," Jane shuttered.

Stephan and Qi raced out of the balcony and back into the dark. They both went in different directions, leaving Vera and Jane by themselves.

All of the lights began turning on again. Now under the light, Chi held a sword made of the finest crystal.

"Out of the house!" Chi yelled to the remaining ten men in suits. "Now!"

The men ran towards him.

Vera watched, her mouth dry as Chi used the sword as a sheild for himself when bullets came at him.

Stephan simply lifted a necklace hiding under his suit and somehow aimed it to the shandelear. Just as his did this, a gun from the men fired, and hit at his side.

Stephan fell to the ground.

Vera raced towards him, watching as blood started seeping out. She would know exactly what do. She just prayed had the time.

She looked up from to wound the shandelear. Shards started to fall for a bit before they suddenly flew silently like crystal birds, darting straight until they sunk their sharp edges into the back of the men's heads.

The men all fell to the ground in a matter of seconds.

"Call an ambulance," Vera cried. "The bullet is pretty deep, but I think he'll be fine."

"Leave him to me," Chi snapped.

"Are you sure?" Jane asked. "Vera's practically a doctor."

"You both need to leave. Now," Chi stammered. "Before the police get here."

Vera stood biting onto her lip as she gaped at Stephans wound.

"Let's go," Jane whipered, grabbing Vera's arm. They walked back threw the piles of men who in fact were still breathing.

They quickly got to their car. The whole way home they said not a word to each other. A fearful bitter silence held onto both of them. They simply didn't know what to say to each other until they got back to the appartment, where they'd simply stare at each other for a while, trying to figure out in their heads what all happened.

"I'm sorry I ruined your night," Jane mumbled, now in her warm pajama's.

"It's fine," Vera sighed. "My mind just feels like...it had blown away."

"Well, hopefully we can get some sleep tonight," Jane smiled softly.

"Do you think the police will come for us or anything?" Vera asked.

"No, Vera," Jane yawned. "They won't."

The girls said their goodnights and headed to their own rooms.

Vera fell onto her bed in the dark, watching the city lights as her eyes closed and opened a million times.

She twisted and turned in her bed. The image of all the glass shards kept soaring in her head. The fortune cooke as well, and how it read that she was in danger.

She couldn't let it go no matter how hard she tried.

There before them was a never ending garden. Stone pathways led in all different directions.

Above them was the velvety skies, struck with so many stars like Vera had never seen before.

Where are we now?

Chi layed Stephan on the ground and ran to get a small plant. He dabbed it on Stephans wound and suddenly it had vannished.

Vera gasped.

"How did you do that?" she asked as her heart fluttered. "What is this plant?"

"I don't care if your a doctor, it's not for you to know," Chi grumbled.

He really did not want them her or Jane there at all. As a matter of fact, if Stephan weren't around, Vera guessed he might have killed them.

"I have to stop selling the glass," Stephan sighed, holding onto were his wound had been.

"Then what will be our purpose on earth?" Chi asked.

On Earth?

"We can't go back," Stephan said. "Can you imagine?"

"Where...are we?" Jane muttered.

"Why are they here?" Chi snapped with a redened face.

"We couldn't just leave them to the police," Stephan sighed.

"What do they know about our company?" Chi asked, looking to Vera and Jane.

"It's expensive," Jane mentioned.

"It holds a power from the heavens that the world runs on," Vera blurted.

Both Stephan and Chi's faced grew pale and nervous.

"My God," Chi gasped.

"A man told me," Vera mentioned. "A man at your party. He said he was part of some agency he called 'bad'. He said that agency wanted to take over your company, but he didn't want them too. He said he wanted to help you."

"He's lying," Chi growled.

"I'd just like to know where we are," Jane begged, eyeing the beautiful plants.

"In my garden," Stephan replied.

"I think we should all get some rest," Chi offered. "It's been a long night."

The four of them agreed and followed Stephan into the depths of the garden where a circle of hammocks hung on trees. In the middle was a small pond and a waterfall, filled with koy fish.

"We can stay here for the night," Stephan said as he plopped in the first hammock.

They all took a hammock. Vera and Jane were surprised to find they were actually very compfortable.

"This is a very peacful place," Vera said in awe.

"I've never seen plants like this,"Jane said, eying the plants. "They seem so out-wordly."

"They are," Stephan muttered.

Vera eyed him curiously. She still wanted to know where the hell they were.

"I could just fall...asleep," Jane yawned before her lights were out.

Vera wanted to sleep too, though she wasn't tired in the least earlier. In fact she was too shaken about everything to even think of sleep.

"These plants around us aid in relaxation and sleep," Stehpan mentioned as he watched Vera eye the plants.

"Interesting," Vera uttered as she laid herself down fully in the hammock, staring up into the never endng stars before she shut her eyes for sleep.

After strange nightmares she couldn't remember when she woke, Vera stood stiff in the hammock.

It was darker now. The pond was still making its graceful noises.

Where the hell am I?

Vera snuck out of the hammock as silently as she could. Her heart was racing as she pushed herself foward into the deep green plants.

On the other side of them was a pathway. She followed it as it went on to no where but more plants.

She took in a deep breath. No wind blew here and the air had a strange taste to it.

She continued on until she came to a strange knocking on what sounded like glass.

She ambled towards the knocking. She couldn't help but too. She just had to know where she was before Stephan and Chi would take her back and make her pretend she was never here.

A plant that somehow brings about homiostasis, she thought to herself as she could almost feel the knocking now behind rows of tropical looking plants. Imagine if I brought that to the hospital...Imagine all it could do. It would probably take my job away.

The knocking was a step away. Her heart was beating like mad as she pushed herself out beyond the plants.

There was sand...going on for ten feet until it reached...glass...glass that appeared to stand and go on to a ceilng.

Looking on beyond the glass was red dust below a stary sky, going on to no where.

There, knocking on the glass was a strange creature that she could only assosiate with a demon and human combined.

It was standing there with scaley dry skin, just knocking on the glass without thought or purpose.

Vera wanted to run. She wanted to go back and pretend like she had never seen it. But she couldn't. She went closer to the creature, to get a better look.

Everythig about the creature seemed dry. It's eyes and hands were actually human like. It's lips like a fish.

She was only inches away from it now. It's face, everything about it was horrifying, yet beautiful if that could possibly be.

She started to knock back until it eaither disapeared or suddenly blended in with its warm surroundings. She could see dust sinking in where ever it was walking too. Everything out there seemed to be an endless nothing.

"I'm not on earth," Vera gasped.

After standing there in awe she went back to find where the hammocks had been. When she arrived, she realized everyone was gone.

Her mouth grew dry and started to pound and she searched everywhere for them.

"Jane?" she called out. "Stephan?"

This isn't good.

She dashed threw the flowery plants and down the stone paths to find no sighn of anyone glance after glance. She went farther until she could hear a voice. It was Jane!

"Jane," Vera gasped as she pushed herself threw the plants to Jane laying on the ground. Tears streamed down her face as a knife was held up to her throat by Chi.

"What are you doing?" Vera cried as she ambled up to them.

"Where have to been?" Chi snarled as he stood up.

"I went for a little walk, that's all," Vera panicked. "Are you trying to kill Jane?"

"I have to kill you too," Chi said. "It was Stephans orders."

"Wait, wait a second," Vera cried. "Why would he do that?"

Jane quickly got back on her feet before Chi slammed her back on the ground again.

"Because you know," Chi yelled. "You ruined your lives for wondering around."

"We won't tell a soul about this, we promise," Vera begged.

"How can we trust you?" Chi screamed.

"You can't," Vera admitted. "Maybe we can just leave our lives and help both of you."

"No," Jane shouted. "Just kill me."

"Jane don't say that," Vera muttered.

"I don't want to live a weird life. I just want my own life back. If I can't have that, than I'm sorry Vera, I don't want to live," Jane cried.

"How can you say that?" Vera gasped, though she knew Jane was just talking out of fear now. Jane never did good in stressful situations of any kind.

"There is no deal to make here," Chi said.

Suddenly Jane rolled away from Chi as silently as she could before she got up and darted towards the plants.

Chi ran after her. Vera ran after Chi.

The three of them where just running to what felt like no reason at all. Vera couldn't understand. If he really wanted to kill her, why didn't he just do it already.

Vera lost them in the never ending plants. She clutched onto her sides, feeling hopeless once again.

There was a small pond Jane had stumbled into when Chi had caught up to her.

Jane was too stiff with fear to work her way out. Though the water seemed to produce a calming effect that in a way soothed her soul. She stopped crying for a moment, and simply gave Chi a careless look.

Chi stood before her, lowering the knife in his hands. He breathed in deeply while he stared at her.

"Just tell me where we are before you kill me," Jane asked.

Chi took a deep breath, peering around before he muttered something that just sounded strange comming from him.

"I can't murder you," Chi said. "I can't. It's against all of me to kill a woman especially."

"But you were going to do it," Jane mentioned. "There's no doubt."

"It's Stephan," Chi huffed. "He's going out of his mind."

"What do you mean?" Jane asked.

"He drugged me in my sleep. I Can feel it's effects wearing off now. He does this to me sometimes...So I can do his dirty work," Chi said.

"I don't want to kill you," Chi admitted. "I don't like you at all and I don't think you should go back to Earth, but I don't want to kill you."

"How did we get here anyway?" Jane asked. "Is it the glass."

"There's a place on Earth where you can find this glass. It's malable enough to form into anything you want. It can do anything from heal you, teleport you galexies away, make you forget, make you insane. You can do anything you want with it if you know how it works, like magic."

"Listen, I don't want any part of your glass or the goverment or anything," Jane said. "I don't want the attention, I don't want the glass, I just want to go home and live my own life."

"Then I have to take you back now," Chi said lifting her up from the waters.

"What's gotten into Stephan, anyway?" Jane asked.

"It happened to him while he was obtaining the glass," Chi started. "To make a long story short, he came across something that took all of his emotion away. The older he gets, the worse it gets. It's terrible, really."

Jane and Chi walked threw the plants and found Vera by the hammocks again.

"You didn't kill her?" Vera beamed.

"I'm taking you both back to your car. You're going home and never speaking of this again," Chi said.

"What's the change of heart?" Vera asked as the walked back to wear they had first came.

"Jane will tell you all about it, just keep this quiet, or you both will find yourself in more danger than its worth," Chi mentioned.

They got to the trap door again. The tree of them got inside and within seconds they found themselves back in the mansion.

"It's this peice right here that can transport you anywhere you wish," Chi said as he held on to a blue and red crystal.

"Cool. Thanks for keeping us alive. We will never come back to this place again," Jane smiled.

"Bye Chi," Vera waved as they walked back threw the living room.

The bodies of men had been gone. Police where all around the mansion, investigating.