Chapter Six: Until the Sky Falls Down Over Me
"For the record, this hospital room drives me insane!" Lana exclaimed as Chloe brought flowers into the room. Okay, they were from Clark and Chloe was sure that they were guilt flowers because of his oh-so steamy engagement with Larissa last night.
Now, Chloe could officially say that she and Lana were in the same boat. They both wanted something they couldn't have, but that something was constantly being dangled in front of their faces.
"Flowers? Honey, you shouldn't have." Lana joked feeling a lot better than yesterday, but still bummed that she had missed out on the carnival, and making new friends.
"You are becoming the poster child for freak accidents," Chloe said to her, not wanting to be the one to bring the bad news.
"I know which is why I need to hear something good." Lana played with the 'lunch' the nurses brought to her earlier. "And tell me you snuck in some real food."
"Of course. A Nestle's Crunch Bar, Teddy Grahams Cinnamon flavor, and your favorite ... a jumbo- sized strawberry blow pop, which is nearly impossible to find."
"Thanks Chloe. This is going to taste so good, but the sugar intake will be insane." Lana grabbed the box of small bear cookies. "So, dish. I want to know all about that hottie that took you to the Carnival."
"Well, he was ... nice."
"Nice? Chloe, come on. Was there a kiss or something? Who did you meet? How was Larissa?"
"Smooth insert. Lana, something happened last night ... with Clark, but I think he should be the one explaining it to you, not me." Chloe sighed, backing away.
"What happened?" She wondered confused and apprehensive about what Chloe was going to tell her. "Say something."
"Lana, I'm sorry you missed the fun. I really am, but this is too uncomfortable for me."
"Wait. What? You're starting to worry me. What happened last night?" Lana sat up, her facing turning pale white.
"Nothing. Forget I said anything. You just concentrate on getting better."
"So do they have some sort of power or don't they?" Isabel whispered to Max after the carnival, hoping her parents wouldn't hear anything.
"I don't know." He looked down at the ground below them. So being on the roof wasn't exactly low-key, but no one would hear them or even look for them there.
"You have me up at 4 in the morning just to tell me you don't know? So what are you going to do to find out? It's the weekend. We won't see them again until Monday." Isabel sighed. "What a waste. They could get together and ... organize or something by then."
"Two days Isabel? Highly unlikely."
"With the threat of the skins around, it could take a couple of hours and we wouldn't have a clue."
"We'll just have to make contact with them this weekend, somehow." Max sighed.
"And how would we do that?"
"Michael connected with that one girl and if we make group plans I'm sure she'll bring along some of the others."
"So we 'befriend' them, and then what?" Isabel half-yawned, ready for bed.
"Divide and conquer. The best thing to do will be to keep them separate until we figure out how strong they are." Max finished. "Which is why we have to start tomorrow."
"It's already tomorrow." Isabel complained, almost laying down until she realized where they were. "I'd better get to sleep then."
"Give me one good reason why you're bailing on me. Michael, I've been planning this for weeks." I tossed my purse onto his couch. "You suck as a boyfriend."
"I've got things to handle. You're either with it or you're not." Michael shrugged it off. "I don't care what you do as long as you don't mess up what we're trying to do."
"Excuse me if it's just a little weird that you'd rather be spending your weekend with a girl who's not your girlfriend. Can you explain it to me Mikey G?" I pressed, knowing it was a dead end. When he got that brick wall of his up, it was over.
"I don't explain myself to anyone. Got it?"
"If I wasn't so invested in the whole 'alien' thing, I would just leave it all behind. It's so much drama Michael. Let's just get away from it for a little while." I seized his hands as a sigh escaped. Now, he wouldn't even look at me. "Just answer me this ... do you or do you not want to be with me?"
"Maria, this is ridiculous. I'm not getting into this. Not now." Michael let go of my hands pulling on another shirt.
"You always avoid the emotional stuff. Just tell me if you love me or not. I don't want to get so involved in you if you don't give a damn about me." I ranted. This was like an everyday thing between us. Michael would ignore me, be completely emotionally attached from me, and I would question his intentions without ever really getting a straight answer from him.
"You can come with us." Michael sighed. "Just don't ... expect anything from me and don't get jealous or anything. Pretend like we're not even going out."
:"That's not hard." I rolled my eyes. "We act like a couple of strangers everyday."
"What will it take to shut you up Maria?"
"Nothing. I promise--" My speech was broken by his lips on mine. So spontaneous, random, and amazing ... Michael was definitely worth it.
"I'm just saying I think it's a bad idea. All of us hanging out with these people we know nothing about." I explained to Chloe.
"You didn't have a problem with it when we met them at the mall. Why the change? If you're worried about being trapped with Lana and Larissa in the same atmosphere, don't. Larissa's not invited." Chloe spewed.
"I'm not worried about anything. I didn't do anything wrong."
"You're just stringing along a growing list of random hearts. That's not a federal crime, but you're hurting a lot of people Clark. Lana included."
"You didn't say anything to her, did you Chloe? I mean ... nothing happened."
"It's not my place to get in the middle of it, but don't disappoint me. And don't hurt Lana." Chloe demanded.
"I don't think I should go then."
"You have to. We're breaking Lana out of the hospital. She'll want to see you."
Larissa hadn't spoken with Clark since the night she kissed him and it was driving her to the edge. Maybe exposing part of her secret wasn't the smartest thing to do, but she was tired of always being isolated from everyone. She was so afraid to say something sometimes that eventually people just gave up and stopped trying.
Then, they'd label Larissa as a 'mystery' and no one would ever bother to trying 'solving her' again. But something in Clark was different. Larisa could feel it. Sure he didn't look at her the same way he did with Lana, but that could be changed. She knew how to now. Once that connection was built, she wouldn't have to force it. It would be there and last.
"Hey Larissa." Chloe walked into homeroom, disrupting her thoughts.
"Where's Clark?" Larissa demanded immediately.
"Wow. You just get right to it, don't you?" Chloe smiled. "We've all been through the I-love-Clark phase. And ... I actually have no idea. I actually don't know where anyone is."
"He's avoided me ... since the carnival." Larissa whispered sadly. That's what she got for showing too much too fast.
"Clark isn't avoiding you. He's just been feeling really guilty about Lana. That's where he's been spending all his time because he definitely hasn't been hanging out with me."
"And what about Pete? He's disappeared since the mall incident. I barely see you either."
"Pete's getting invovled in football or soccer ... one of those sports. I'm working my way from the newspaper staff to co-editor and ... It just seems like everyone is getting super-involved. We're all just trying to fit in here." Chloe answered, not mentioning anything about this weekend.
"Lana and Clark ... are they doing something together?" Larissa asked quietly, trying to pretend like it was a natural curiosity when it was borderline jealousy.
"I really don't know anything about that. Clark and Lana are on a planet of their own." Chloe smiled, turning back around in her seat. All of Larissa's questions were starting to make her feel uneasy.
"I think we're wasting time having another one of these meetings." Isabel sighed. "We should all just find one and start befriending them. Now. Before the weekend, so that if something happens we'll be more prepared."
"So you want us to stalk them? Brilliant idea genius." Michael snarled sarcastically, a little more moody that usual.
"The best thing to do it just lay low. Michael, you go talk to the blonde girl, Isabel to the dark-haired guy and one of the girls ... Larissa and I'll find out the deal on Lana." Max offered.
"This would be so much easier if Tess where here." Isabel muttered as the others tried to block the images from their minds. Since the skins, and Max's rejection of their relationship after many months, Tess had been found and captured. They all knew that tests were being done on her, but with the Skins ... it made it difficult to decide what was more important.
"I still think we should get her." Isabel stated. "I've been trying to track her through dreams, but I don't think she's getting them. I think ... whatever they've done to her, that's she's like a vegetable."
"Good. That means they can't get any information out of her and we don't have to put up with her trying to force us together." Michael looked at Isabel as he shook his head. In what lifetime were they together? No wonder why it didn't work out.
"We'll need her power against Khivar." Isabel argued.
"What are you suggesting ... that we take it from her?" Max asked.
"Exactly." Michael smiled. "We can do an equalizer where we each get a little of it. That way, it doesn't get into the wrong hands."
"We can't leave Tess completely defenseless." Max argued, still feeling some attachment over the girl who had birthed his 100 human child. "We can't--It only works with four."
"Let's find a fourth then."
"Let's." Michael nodded. "Hey Iz …" He started before the trio left the room.
"You're stable now right … no problems with your powers anymore? You didn't freak out today."
"It's under control." Isabel responded confidently although she had no knowledge of why everything seemed to under her control.
I could feel it building up inside of me. I knew something was bursting to come out, but I couldn't let it. There were so many changes going on with my body. Not your normal teenage ones, but different ones.
I had been warned about this by Khivar. He told me that the chemicals would start to wear off and I wouldn't be able to contain what was inside of me. I sighed. I just had to find more, make more, and do whatever it took.
All I have wanted from my life is to be just like everyone else. I didn't ask for these powers ... why would I want to be so distanced from everyone else? I already knew that Chloe was starting to have less patience with me and Clark ... was avoiding me. Maybe I shouldn't have shared this part of myself with him, but it was such a relief not to hide who I was.
Now I had to deal with the consequences. With nothing else to do, I looked at the clock. 9am Saturday morning. The school was holding late try-outs for all us evacuees.
Maybe that's where everyone would be. I just needed to find the energy to get myself up. I had an hour. "Ah." I gasped, holding onto my best post for support. The headaches were starting again. The power was struggling to release itself. I wouldn't let it. It wouldn't ruin me again.
(A/N: It's taken 2 years, but I've added more. Sometimes you get caught up in life. I want to finish my most important stories this year (2007). So leave me some comments, questions, reviews. It will make it easier for me to continue, knowing that someone is into the story. --NL)
Weekend Rendezvous--will Michael and Maria's relationship survive it?
Is someone onto Larissa
Clark still loves Lana