A/N:This is a way more edited vesion, sorry for the really atrocious grammer and editing errors in the previous version
Before I had met Max, my life hadn't been so much simpler All I had had to worry about was school, friends, family, and other normal teenage stuff, but now I have to think about time paradoxes and murder. You know, the usual, that came attached to warping space-time and parallel universes. Here, let's skip back to three months ago, on the day I first met Max Lane.
I sat in my english class, my head resting in my hands as I nodded in and out of sleep. It was a zero period class, which means it was at seven thirty, and normal school hadn't even started yet. No one wanted to be there, yet we all were because of our crazily overloaded schedule. I could tell Emma Stevenson, who was sitting at the desk in front of me, was as groggy as I was by the way her head of delicate blonde curls kept slipping off her palms from time to time.
I almost wanted to poke her arm and ask how she had had the time to do her hair, and, well, why? I mean, I know I don't try at all, when it comes to getting ready in the mornings. I'd much rather sleep the most I can, than get up and do my hair. I was sitting in this class right now with a pair of boyfriend fit jeans on and my black zip-up hoodie on. My chin length dirt colored hair hung limply around my face half way obscuring my view of Mrs. Gonzalez.
Jerking me out of my daze, the 7:45 bell rung, alerting the end of the class. The small class jumped up instantly, the metal legs of the chairs scraping the ground with irritating shriek. We all headed out the door, hungry and sleep deprived. I paused and waited for Val, my best friend and the English teacher's daughter, to come out.
"Hey," She greeted me.
She was wearing her maroon hoodie and her black hair in a sloppy bun at the nape of her neck, looking about as put together as I was. She was wearing her glasses, which she never actually wears during the school day, saying they make her "eyes look alien". She usually puts in contacts before the day starts to look "normal".
We stared at each other for a few seconds.
"I need my coffee," she said breaking the tired silence.
" Let's go," I made my way to the school doors with her beside me.
We stepped out into the cool morning air of the March morning and made our daily coffee and breakfast run to a tiny Mexican bakery called Reya's across the street.
The door opened with the jingle of tiny bells and my nose was instantly pleased with the smell of fresh baked breads and dark roast coffee enveloping me as we walked into the shop.
"Hi girls," Mr. Rodriguez, the shop owner greeted us, " What can I get you today?" . He was a short happy man with callous hands and booming laughter, who made the best baked goods in the world.
"Just our usual, sir. Two coffees and a one of those large cinnamon rolls to split." Val answered.
He nodded and we took a seat at "our" table, Val sitting across from me. I rubbed my eyes, knowing all too well the dark circles underneath them.
"You do Abbott's homework last night?" Val asked while rolling her neck.
"I got no sleep at all last night."
"I'll take that as a yes."
I chuckled darkly and returned the question, "How about you?"
She shook her head, "I couldn't find the time after basketball."
Our coffees and giant sugar pastry arrived at the table and the smell was overwhelmingly familiar.
"If only there was more time in the world," I said while tucking into the cinnamon roll, making sure to get plenty of icing.
Our classes pasted as they always do, dragging the time along like a cat on a leash. Time might be stubborn, but eventually it moved, dragging it's stomach on the floor in protest. As soon as the bell rang, I was out. I grabbed by books from my locker and ran straight out of the school's doors.
I didn't live a long ways from the school, but the mile walk felt always long after a day at school. And it wasn't nearly as fun as the mornings, with Val being stuck at basketball practice 'till six. I walked past the smoke shop, the loan place, and at last my final landmark, the Walgreens with Mr. Cobbs begging in front of it for any spare change people could muster. I'd reached home. Home, was a really crappy apartment complex, misleadingly called the "The Heights".
Now, I see the crumbling "The Heights" sign everyday, but everyday, it never fails to make me laugh bitterly in my head, thinking about how my life used to be. Could have been still.
It was a relatively cold day, well for Texas anyway, and most people were hiding out in their dingy living rooms sitting on their Salvation Army couches in front of the TV. They were caught out in the drama of reality television, while momentarily forgetting they had a stack of unpaid loans, bad credit, and were living in the glorious palace that is "The Heights".
I climbed the creaky, paint-stripped side stairs to the second level of building B, then took a deep breath, and opened the door of apartment 9.
It was pitch black, except for the bright blue glow of the TV. As I entered the wild clapping and yelling of a correct guess on "The Price is Right" occuring on low volume reached my ears. The strong stench of alcohol and insane amount of clutter on the floor made me stumble for a bit. I felt a strange feeling of embarrassment, even though I was the only one around to care.
Hearing a slight snoring, I peeked over the back of the couch to find my mom dead asleep on the couch. She was lying on her stomach with one arm clutching a pillow and the other dangling off the side of the horribly stained cushions. I sighed, and retreated back to my room in the back of a short, narrow hallway.
I shut the door behind me and turned to look at my room, the one clean place in the house. It was the one room I had control over and I tried to keep it spotless. My walls were a shade of light purple I'd outgrown years ago. I remembered the excitement I had gotten when we'd first moved in, and I was able to paint my own room. Then, the newfound independence was invigorating, it had been something I'd been craving for my entire little nine year old life. I could paint the wall however I wanted! All by myself!
Now, I'd give anything to have someone help me paint the wall.
I dropped my bag down on the floor, the stainless carpet I prided myself on. There was one time when I'd dropped my hotdog on the carpet, and ketchup had colored a tiny spot on the floor red. I recalled then spending hours on my knees scrubbing the carpet with a cheap stain remover I'd gone out and bought from the Walgreens with my little hidden stash of one dollar bills, and crying. Really crying, hard. The tears had seemed to stream down my freckled cheeks non-stop the entire time I scrubbed.
I shivered, remembering the thoughts that ran through my head during the time. I ruined my room. I've managed to destroy to one place in the apartment that was under my control. I've ruined my sanctuary.
I shook the experience out of my head, the stain had eventually come up, but ever since, I've been terrified to even so much as step on my rug with shoes on. So, I slipped them off and climbed on top of my bed. Time for homework.
After three hours, I'd just finished my homework when I heard my padding down the hallway to my room. Without knocking, my mom opened the door with too much force, sending the door knob into the wall behind it. When I heard then collison, I could almost see the plaster falling to the floor.
"I'm going out with Adrien!" She proclaimed. Her lips were a very audacious shade of red and her dress was exceptionally short.
"Okay," She mimicked with her tongue out, while teetering on her high heels. "God, when will you stop it with the attitude Katrina?"
Oh, so many things I wanted to say to that! I suppressed all of them though, settling for a more...respectful response.
"It will never happen again ma'am."
Her eyes narrowed. I froze for a solid thirty seconds as she studied my face. Her features eventually softened out, and she gave a wild, girly laugh.
"Kat, you are just too much darling! Toooo much!" She said tossing her head back violently. She stumbled out of the doorway, then almost tripped over nothing, but caught herself on the on the wall.
I heard the door slam. Great, she's gonna get even more drunk, I thought. Then, if I'm lucky, she'll bring back her annoying boyfriend who can't seem to put down a cigarette. Adrien also had a habit of getting drunk, and when he was with mom, they'd both drink together, and never stop.
I sighed, why couldn't she see what the beers and those pills did to her? I swore to myself a long time ago to never get like that. So senselessly drunk and drugged, she couldn't take care of her own life, much less anybody else's.
I got out my phone and texted Val. It was eleven, but I'd texted her once at five a.m and she still had responded, I don't think either of us ever slept.
U doing anything?
She texted almost immediately back.
Yeah sorry can't tonight Grounded
I sent a raised eyebrow emoji.
How do u have ur phone then?
Stole it back. Mom coming...gtg
I shoved my phone into my pocket, and got up off my bed. I knew pretty much everybody else was having a better Friday night then me. Just by scrolling though Instagram I know I'd find a plethora of pictures of my peers having fun. Just more inspiration not to open the app. Or have many friends.
I sat down at the small white desk in the corner of my room, and cracked open my sketch book like I always did after I finished my homework. To move to New York and become an comic book artist, I had to practice.
I was sketching the outline of my Deadpool when I heard a loud crash come from the living room. I jumped up and grabbed my history textbook instinctively. Someone else was in the apartment. It wasn't Mom, she'd just left. My ear pressed against the door as I put my body weight against it. The sound of footsteps could be heard from beyond the room.
Surprisingly, I wasn't frozen in fear In fact, it only worked to clear my mind. I was by no means calm. I was pretty much screaming internally, but I moved slowly and acted with caution as I turned to door knob. I kept the door partially open as I hide behind it, hoping to get a glimpse of the perpetrator.
At first, I didn't see anything but the dark outlines of the back of the couch and kitchen wall. After a few minutes of just watching the darkness, and thinking I was insane, I saw a slight shift come from behind one of the pile of DVDs.
A figure stood up. My breath caught in my throat, this could not be happening. Someone was actually here! Were they armed? By just looking it didn't seem so, but I couldn't be sure. I switched off the lights in my room, and settled in my place watching from the door.
As I stared more at the person's outline, the more I realized they didn't think anyone was around. The way they had stood up and seemed to be messing with something in their hand signaled to me they weren't being very vigilant. Let's keep it that way, one voice in my head said, let's stay unnoticed. Another, slightly crazier voice told me to run at them while their head was turned and hit them overhead with my World Geo. Textbook. I decide to ignore the insane one for now.
The intruder suddenly started to move. I stayed as still as I could and held my breath. They walked a few feet, their head moved from left to right as they surveyed the apartment. They had switched on a light somehow, probably their phone. The flashlight scanned the area. I couldn't move even if I wanted to now, forget all of that, "not frozen in fear" stuff.
Luckily for me, they didn't take notice the open door. It seemed kinda like sloppy work to me, for someone who broke into people's homes to steal regularly. Given this, I decided they were most likely an amateur.
The flashlight all of the sudden clicked off. The intruder then clapped, and looked up at the ceiling. Expecting something.
"Great, primitive light systems!" They remarked, the voice sounding male.
'Primitive'? What the hell was going on? Did he expect me to one of those "Clap on! Clap off!"light switches? Did he realize that he was in "The Heights"?
He crossed the room and flipped the light on, mumbling under his breath.
When the lights came on I was met with the image of a teenage boy, he looked maybe one or two years older than me. The first thing I noticed was the boy's bright red hair. It stood in stark contrast to his all black outfit. It didn't appear to be to be a product of dye, just really bright natural red hair. My eyes were drawn next to his black garb. It had a form fitting look to it, yet not quite skin tight. The collar was adorned with a single, barely visible silver line, it almost looked translucent. On his temple there was a miniscule circle-shaped metal piece, identical to the shade of the line.
Who was this guy? And why was he wearing a halloween costume in January?
He was now again messing with that thing in his hand I couldn't see. Now was my chance, the crazy voice came back strong. Take your book and hit him from behind!
Upon further examination, he was extremely skinny, to the point where I felt, despite his lankiness, I could probably overpower him. I took a deep breath, my heart beating out of my chest, and leapt from my hiding place.
The boy turned instantly, and with cat-like reflexes, doged my blow. My book swung through open air, as I felt his leg hit the back of my knees, knocking me to the ground, where I crashed into Mom's DVD pile. Within a millisecond of hitting the ground the boy was on top of me, his boney knee on my throat. I attempted to shift around to throw him off balance, but somehow his body wasn't as weightless as it appeared.
"Who are you?" I hissed, trying to make my choked voice as intimidating as possible.
He just stared at me, his eyes wide in a sort of morbid fascination. His eyes were a striking cool, clear blue at first glance. But the more he stared at me, the more gray flecks I saw in his eyes, a ring starting to surround his pupils.
This guy was really giving me the creeps, by the was he just stared, as if not even seeing me. Like looking right through my body.
I took advantage of his statue state though, turning suddenly. Caught off guard, he was flipped over onto the ground. I sprinted over to the kitchen, as footsteps rushed towards me. I flug open a drawer, grabbing the butcher knife.
"Get away from me!" I screamed at him as he enter the kitchen. My knuckles turned a boney white, as I clenched the knife in front of me. "Get closer and I'll stab you!" I threatened.
The boy only rubbed his forehead and rolled his eyes, "Why me?" He muttered to the sky.
"Hands up!" I shrieked.
He sighed, and pulled out a silver pistol from a strap on the inside of his arm I didn't notice. Instantly, I was terrified for my life.
"Drop the knife or I will fire."
I felt I might have a heart attack, as I set the knife down on the chipped plastic tile.
"Good choice," He said. "Now, could you tell me what year this is?"