Okay, here it is, the end of this story. There is another one swimming around in my head. . .who knows it might actually show up at some point. Thank you for all the reviews, it makes me smile everytime I open my e-mail and see that beautiful bot@fanfiction.net [Review Alert!]. Well anyway, I guess I'll get onto this story now. Little disclaimer.once again the song isn't mine, but unfortunately I don't know who's it is. But, I can tell you were to find it. . . that beautiful little montoge of Richie wondering around the city looking for Mr. Stubs (AKA Mr. Tubby) in the episode 'Family Tree'. And you want to know how I got the words? I sat in front of my tv for twenty minutes rewinding the scene over and over and scribbling in my note book. . .so if they're a little off, I'm sorry. You can always e-mail me the corrections and I can fix them.

. . . . . .

"Ah, ah, ah!" Richie scolded taking the cheesecake from Rylan. "You know what Mac said. No rich foods for awhile."

"He said that a week ago. It has been awhile. I'm fine." She insisted taking the plate back. "And I'm starving."

"You're going to be puking all night. And I'm not holding you hair this time."

"Am not. And it's not like I asked you to."

"Rylan!" Tessa said from the doorway. Rylan froze, the fork in the air and her mouth hanging open.

Richie smirked. "Told ya. OW! What was that for?" He asked rubbing his head where Tessa had hit him.

"You were just going to let her eat that?"

"Hey, I tried. It's not my fault she doesn't listen to me."

Tessa reached over, took the plate from Rylan, and handed it to Richie. "How hard was that?"

"But- -I- - aw, man. How is it that I get in trouble everytime she does something wrong?"

"Because you're the oldest." Rylan smiled.

"Ha, ha." He answered dryly taking a bite of the cheesecake Tessa had confiscated. "At least I get to eat what I want."

Rylan's face fell. "That is so mean."

"You're going to spoil your appetite." Tessa warned.

"Tessa, I am appalled. You actually think I can ruin my appetite? It never has, and probably never will happen." Richie scoffed taking another bite.

She laughed, "That's right, I forgot how much of a bottomless pit you were."

They were still standing in the kitchen talking when Duncan returned caring two bags filled with Chinese take-out.

"More food I can't eat?" Rylan pouted.

"I don't see why can't have some of it. Just take it easy." He answered.

"It's about time."

"Don't make me out to be the bad guy. It's not my fault you couldn't hold down anything for more than five minutes."

"It wasn't my fault either." She defended with a smile.

"Well I didn't drug you."

"That's besides the point, Mac." Richie interrupted. "You got between a teenager and her food. That's about as villainous as you can get."

Something flashed across Duncan's face. Only then did Richie remember the words Duncan had used to describe Rylan's reaction to him when she had woken up. But whatever uneasiness she had felt around him had passed. She even seemed to be making up for it by doing something or going with him anytime that he offered. She currently had drug him over to the table and was demanding an explanation as to why she couldn't have any General Chu shrimp.

. . . . . .

A couple hours later Rylan and Richie had decided to call it a night. They changed and got into their beds and waited for sleep to come

"Hey, Ry? Can I ask you a question?" Richie asked rolling over to face her.


"What happened last week?"

"Last week?"

"Yeah you know, the whole. . .thing with, um. . ."

"Oh, that. Honestly, I don't remember much. One minute I'm sneaking out after fourth period, the next I'm here with. . ." she paused, "everyone standing around me," she finished

"You were skipping?" Richie laughed.

"Yeah, well you know how it is. Sometimes you're just not in the mood."

"So where were you, exactly?"

"Not in history, I can tell you that much."

"Oh," he stared at the ceiling for a minute. "Hey, Ry?"

"Just get it out of your system, man," she sighed.

"Why were you screaming?"

Rylan propped herself up on her elbows and looked at him. "When?"

"Well, just before you woke up you were screaming and flailing around. Why?"

"I don't know, nightmares I guess." She answered biting her lip and looking at the floor as she spoke. Richie didn't seem to notice her behavior.

"You just seemed really freaked out, whatever it was."

"Not a clue," she shrugged. "Why do you want to know?"

"Oh, just curious," Richie answered softly. "It was kind of weird."

"What was I screaming?"

"Oh, you know, the usual stuff help, help and all that jazz." He answered casually.

"Huh." She grunted softly and rolled onto her back.

They lapsed into silence and soon Rylan's even breathing was the only sound in the room. Richie rolled onto his side and watched her sleep. For the first time the adventure and glamour of life with immortals faded from his mind. It's whole appeal left him. In it's place a strange surge of dread filled him. He had always thought that having immortality would be the coolest thing that could happen to someone. But that night in the cathedral had been the first time he had experienced what it was like from the other side. He had been the one with the sword in his hand. He had been the one doing the rescuing. He had done the killing.

'No,' he quickly reminded himself. 'Mac killed the guy. You can't kill and immortal by stabbing them. You have to take their head, which you didn't. Even Mac agrees with you.'

He lay quietly in bed and listened to the thunder rolling in the distance. He looked at the clock and was startled to find he had been lying there for three hours, it was one seventeen a.m. Richie hadn't noticed that he had been humming, until he noticed he had stopped. He tried to remember the melody, but all that came to him was the words. He smiled; he loved it when this happened, when a song just came to him. He hadn't even been trying; he had just been thinking about anything that came to mind: his childhood, Mac, Angie, Tessa, immortals, Emily, God. . .He grabbed his spiral, went into the living room, and wrote.

'God, won't you deliver me

From the bane of my confusion.

Growing up in the city streets

In a desperate situation

Crying over this deep despair

Because there is nothing right

There is a crying angel watching over me

That is keeping me alive

Oh God, deliver me

I have lost my innocence

And I have lost my pride

And everytime I looked at her

You know my mama cried

She said, what could I do different

There's no one there for me.

What could I do different?

I'm just trying to survive

Oh God, deliver me'

Satisfied, he closed the spiral and let his eyes blur out of focus.

'Oh, God deliver me.' He thought as an involuntary grin crept across his face. 'But not for awhile, everything is pretty okay down here. Although, don't get offended if I stay away from churches for a while. Holy Ground can be a dangerous place.'