Disclaimer: See chapter one.

Cool! I got some reviews! After all my begging and pleading, I'm finally getting what I asked for! Yay! Anyway, as I reply to a review I got, faeriegrotto, in my reviews, I like it when people say 'it's good' or 'it's bad', but I also like a reason. In addition, I know I shouldn't, but I sort of like a sugar-coated review every now and then. They make me all squealing! People giving me ideas for what should happen next is nice, but I sort of have this whole thing planned out. I even know what the finale for this whole series is! (I'll let you know, there's six stories in the series.) I hope that answers your review. Now then, on with the story!

~*Chapter 6*~

Number 1 stood with ropes tied around her hands behind her. She stood before the all-powerful Number 86 and the all-bossy Numbah 86. She didn't think this day would come so soon. She had only been commissioned into the Teens Next Door when she turned thirteen last year and was decommissioned out of the Kids Next Door. She had a gloomy look on her face. Most of the KND and TND did, too. Number 4 stood with her arms crossed and an angry look on her face. Number 2 stood in the shadows of a nearby tree, not wishing to be part of such a hard decommissioning ceremony. Numbah 86 was feeling a mix of satisfaction and guilt. Number 1 was a girl, and yet she had done something really stupid. This didn't seem right. Numbah 1 was upset. He let his glasses slide down the tip of his nose before pushing them back onto his face. Number 1 stood in silence. She brought her head down.

"Number 1," Number 86 began, "do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth in this court of Teens Next Door law?"

"Yes," Number 1 replied miserably, kneeling before the head of decommissioning.

"Then let the trial begin."

Number 1 stood once again and stared into the eyes of Number 86. She was a girl who was known as Alex to adults. She wore a dark green jacket over a white cami. She had on dark red sweatpants to go with her black basketball shoes. She had a little, fuzzy dark green hat that covered most of her brown hair back in a ponytail. Even though Number 86 was head of decommissioning, she didn't really like her position. She didn't want to see friends of hers go. She had seen a lot of eighteen-year-olds in the past, feeling horrible now that they were legal adults. She hated seeing the glum looks on their faces as their numbers were taken from them. To her, it was an awful feeling.

"Number 1, you have been accused of being a turncoat and traitor to the Teens Next Door by siding with an enemy. What do you have to say for yourself?"

"I was trying to protect Number 3."

Some of the KND and TND burst out in laughter at her strange remark. Number 1 felt a blush rising to her cheeks and looked to the side.

"A likely story," Numbah 86 snapped. "That's what they all say. They were just trying to help the team. Well, I've got news for you! You're a dirty liar and cannot be trusted as a member of the TND."

"Numbah 86, let me handle this," Number 86 insisted, giving her counterpart a little nudge to the side.

"You must believe me!" Number 1 exclaimed. "I would never do anything to put a member of my team's life in danger."

"I can't exactly trust you," Number 86 replied. "You do have a past with threats and serious offenses."

"But she's different now!" Numbah 1 exploded.

"Did we ask you?!" Numbah 86 shouted back. Numbah 1 got the hint and stood quietly. He looked over the rim of his sunglasses and saw Number 3 looking concerned.

{That's weird,} he thought. {Why would someone who could have been killed by an enemy feel bad for the person that caused it? That just doesn't make sense.} Numbah 1 crossed his arms and looked to Numbah 3. She wasn't looking too happy either. {She must feel bad that someone's getting decommissioned because of something she planned, but I wonder what Number 1 did this for.}

"Number 86," Number 1 explained, "believe whatever you want. I know that I didn't mean to hurt Number 3. It never crossed my mind. I never wanted to, and I don't plan to in the future. All I plan to do is stop an evil future from happening."

"Can you see the future?" Numbah 86 asked, putting her hands on hips.

"Sort of. I've been trying to control my temper through meditation. I think I'm gaining ESP because of it. I'm not sure. Maybe I'm becoming psychic. One day, right in the middle of a session, I saw something horrible. An innocent little girl was writhing in pain. Color seemed to be draining from her body and-"

"I've heard enough!" Numbah 86 snapped. "That is such nonsense, it's not even funny! I'll bet the adults are teaching you to use this power. For all we know, you could be in league with the adults."

"I'd never do that!" Number 1 yelled. "I remain loyal to the Teens Next Door!"

"Yeah, sure."

"Numbah 86 has a point, Number 1," Number 86 agreed. "You show all signs of an alliance with the adults. I wouldn't be surprised if you were."

"Neither would I," Number 4 mumbled under her breath.

"Listen," Number 1 begged, "I know I'm not the best person to hang out with. I know I lose my temper very easily. I know I have somewhat of a criminal past, but I wouldn't want to literally hurt my friend."

Number 86 scratched her chin. She didn't like where this was going. Number 1 was her friend, and she didn't want to lose such a great operative like her. Number 1 really was one in a million. Besides, where would anyone be able to find another first in command? Not a lot of people had that kind of maturity or discipline.

"I say she's in league with the adults," Numbah 4 announced.

"No, I'm not!" Number 1 screamed, jolting her head towards the Kid Next Door and giving him a haunting stare.

"Then prove it,"

"How am I supposed to do that?"

"If you can't, then I say we decommission her."

"Number 1," Numbah 86 stated, "you are officially in league with the adults. You have betrayed the Teens Next Door."

"As Number 86, head of decommissioning, I have no choice but to-"

"STOP!!!"

The world turned silent. None of the KND had spoken. None of the TND had spoken. Mushi and Lizzie were both at their houses. Nobody else in the teams was there. At least that's what they thought.

"That girl has not sided with the adults. She is a full-blown Teen Next Door."

Everybody looked to the other side of the street. The decommissioning trial and ceremony took place outside, and there, on the other side of the street, was an old Kid Next Door. Cree.

"Well, if it isn't teenager Cree," Numbah 86 said casually. "Where have you been?"

"Cut the cheep talk," Cree ordered. "It's not like I'm standing up for Megan or anything. In fact, I hate her a lot. I'm only doing this to protect the adults. I'm also protecting Father and Mother."

"You mean, you-"

"Yes, Number 1," Cree continued, "the Delightful Teens, the Delightful Children, and I have all teamed up. Don't think I'm doing this to protect you or because I like you. All I know is that she's not with us. She's a Teen Next Door. She wouldn't want to hurt one of her fellow operatives. Take it from someone who's with the adults."

"We've got our eye on you," Numbah 86 warned.

"Yeah, yeah, whatever," Cree spat out. She continued to walk down the sidewalk away from the younger ones.

"Well, in a twisted thing of fate, I guess you're innocent," Number 86 said to Number 1, "but this is your final warning. If we get another call and you've done something stupid again, we'll get you for real."

"Yes, ma'am," Number 1 replied. Numbah 1 walked over to Number 1 and undid the ropes tied around her hands. Number 1 gave her fingers a stretch and glared at Number 86. "I'm going to take a walk," she said, and she started down the street.

"I'm glad Number 1's not being decommissioned," Number 3 announced. "I think she was trying to do the wrong thing for the right reason."

Suddenly, Numbah 5 came walking out of the tree house.

"Man," she began, "Numbah 5 has got to stop drinking so much soda during decommissioning ceremonies. What'd I miss?"

"Nothing," Numbah 1 replied. "Number 1's still in the Teens Next Door."

"I'm happy. She's your counterpart, your friend. It wouldn't be the same here without her."

"No, it wouldn't,"

A few minutes later, Number 1 was out of the neighborhood and in the city. She searched her skirt pocket for some money. She pulled out five dollars and seventy-two cents, just enough to get a small cup of coffee. She headed into the café and walked to the counter. The aroma of coffee and fresh-baked muffins filled the air. Classical music was playing and the black walls made the room seem warm for some reason. Number 1 ordered a small coffee and sat down in one of the chairs. She poured a little bit of milk and sugar into the hot beverage and took a sip. She set the cup down and looked to the other side of the room. She spotted Cree.

"Hi," she called. Cree didn't respond. She had her own cup of coffee that she took a sip of ever few seconds. She looked out the window at the snow lying on the ground and the people all bundled up passing by. She seemed angry. Her eyes were narrowed and her eyebrows came low on them. Number 1 got up from her seat and walked over to the other side of the café. She stopped and stood in front of the older teenager.

"Don't talk to me," Cree snapped.

"I just wanted to thank you for saving me from a fate I didn't deserve," Number 1 said gently. "I know I deserve to be punished for putting Number 3's life in danger, but definitely not for being with the adults because I'm not with the adults. I wonder what they'll do to me. What do you think?"

"I think you talk way too much and way too fast."

"Oh, sorry. Listen, I know you don't like me, but what made you stand up for me when I was about to be decommissioned?"

"If word got out that you were with the adults," Cree began, "then Father and Mother would be ruined. The Delightfuls would lose their dignity as villains, and I'd be known as some teenager that hangs out with stupid kids and immature little teens. Do you think I'd want that?"

"No,"

"Good answer. I was protecting my title. However, just because of this, do not think I'll be there to back you up on all of your problems. I have my own crap to deal with. I have a sister in the Kids Next Door. We're enemies. I know you have a little brother, but you should be thankful that he's not part of those dumb KND."

"I am."

"Good."

Cree threw on her winter coat over her pink shirt and blue jeans and left the café without another word. Number 1 watched her walk down the street until she couldn't see her anymore. She walked back to her seat and sat down. She took another sip of her coffee and stared down at the floor.

"Why is it that I can feel so high and mighty when head of an organization, but I feel like such a nonentity around older, more powerful teenagers like Cree?" she asked herself. She left the coffee on the table and headed for home.

Back at the tree house, Number 1 sat with Number 2 in front of the TV. It was off. Silence bounced against the walls of the hang out room. Their ears rang. Number 1 brought her legs up to her chest and sighed.

"Do you want to yell at me?" she asked her fellow operative. "I can't blame you if you want to."

"I don't want to yell," Number 2 insisted. "I want to celebrate. You haven't been decommissioned. I'm really happy."

"Please, it's not like I'm that important anyway," Number 1 suggested. "What Numbah 1 said back when we baby-sat him and the KND was right: I don't have any friends. I've never had any. I probably never will."

"Don't say that," Number 2 begged. "It'll make me sad. It's a lie. You have friends."

"Right,"

Number 2 could feel her temper rising, something that didn't happen very often. She became confused. She looked straight at her leader.

"Number 1, you are my best friend," she said. "I'd do anything for you. I'd even follow you into another life."

"Seriously?"

"Yeah,"

Number 1 smiled. "Thanks, Jennifer Venus."

"Anytime, Megan Un." The two operatives laughed and turned on the TV.

That night, Number 3 went to bed around ten o'clock. He opened up the door to his room and stepped inside. There stood Numbah 3. For a while, the counterparts stood, staring at each other, not saying a word. Finally, Number 3 spoke up.

"One question."

"Yes?"

"Are you happy now?"

~*End Transmission*~

I'd like to give a special thanks to Michelle Branch for a song that is so true. Keep a look out for the fourth story in the Teens Next Door series: Operation: C.H.I.L.L.