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" Not until you tell me who you are."

" I am a friend of Livedie," Augustine replied, his eyes looked mockingly at Max. " If that's what you want to know."

Spike glanced at Augustine meaningfully, and then rolled his eyes sarcastically at Max. " You guys really know how to make use of precious time by means of testing each other's wits."

" We don't know who he is," Max hissed, annoyed. " How could we provide valuable information to him if we are ignorant of his identity?"

Spike snorted in irritation. " Well, let me tell you then. His name is Augustine, and he is a boy around our age who happens to be Livedie's friend. I mean, come on! What can a boy around our age do? Don't be so paranoid!"

" Fine! If that's what you want, go ahead and tell him then!" Max raged. " However, if anything happens because of your big mouth, you shall shoulder the full responsibility!"

" Don't digest me with your crap!" Spike retorted. " No one said anything about relying on you!"

Then he added to Augustine, " Come on! I'll bring you there."

Augustine smiled gratefully at Spike, but his eyes were devoid of emotions. They were icy cold, like glass. As he passed Max, he remarked softly, " Never allow your feelings to stray. Livedie is not all that simple, sympathetic Max."

Max stared at Augustine, feeling dumbfounded. How did he know my name? Did I ever mention it to him? He wondered. Max was feeling perplexed, when a nudge at his ribs plunged him back to reality. It was Kirsten who had interrupted his thoughts.

" We better follow them," Kirsten advised. " I fear for Spike's safety."

" He wanted to go in the first place," Max retorted stubbornly. " Besides, since when did you start believing in this mumbo-jumbo?"

" Get real," Kirsten said in frustration. " I trust in my own instincts. When you guys were shouting at each other like a bunch of duffers, I observed that weirdo discreetly, and saw him eyeing the two of you like a hawk eyeing its prey. Gosh, that was something I'll never forget."

" What?" Max asked.

" His eyes, dummy!" Kirsten exploded, as she dragged him forward. " His grey eyes glittered into a stunning silver."

" Grey?" Max demanded. " But I thought I saw lavender."

" Well, I might have seen wrongly," Kirsten said absently, as she spotted something glistening in the grass.

" No, you don't understand!" Max interjected. " Something is really wrong with that guy!"

" Well, duh!" Kirsten said, rolling her eyes as she picked up that object and examined it.

" Hurry up!" Max urged impatiently.

" You know what?" Kirsten said with a grim smile.

" What?" Max demanded.

" For once, you might be just right."

Spike glanced uncomfortably at Augustine. He was having second thoughts now. One weirdo is already too creepy for him to handle, now that there's an addition to that number, he wondered how long his poor heart could handle it.

" I hope you are not kidding around with me," Augustine said quietly. " It'll only make things more.complicated."

Spike felt a shiver crept down his spine. If only I had held my tongue! Spike thought, as he glanced desperately around for a glimpse of Max.

" Don't bother to hope," Augustine answered. " He will not be here to interrupt us."

" Couldn't you see?" Spike asked in astonishment. " I deliberately did not want him to come along."

" Have your powers weakened? 1712?" Spike scoffed.

Augustine smiled. " I see, you remember."

" Skip that. I hate introduction. Let's get straight into the point. Why are you and Livedie starting all this sinister stuff?"

" You are ignorant, aren't you? Well, not for long. Before he comes, you better learn something, or you won't be of any use to us," Augustine sneered with a coy grin plastered on his face.

" He? 1217? He'll never do this."

" Or won't he?" Augustine remarked in a tone that was dripping with sarcasm.

Spike's face grew a shade paler, and his eyes widened with fear. " If he's in, then so be it. But Max and I are not involved in this. Why must Livedie dragged us into this?"

" Revenge, ignorant Spike," Augustine whispered icily. " Don't tell me you forgot that little detail on what took place five years ago."

" Yeah? What did I do?" Spike pressed.

" 013," Augustine said simply, but there was insuppressible rage reflected in his eyes.

Then he added threateningly, " Bring me to Livedie now!"

Spike felt his insides turned cold. What did he do to deserve such hatred from this boy? In 013? That place? Why would Augustine mention that place? Most importantly, what was the fate that was awaiting him?