"Well you certainly know how to piss people off, Mastriani," Rob said encircling me in his arms. My head suddenly felt to heavy to hold up and I let it fall onto his shoulder. Unlike normal Rob didn't pull back from this action.
"God, I'm going to miss you when I leave," I breathed into his leather jacket.
Rob pulled back after a few minutes to look at my face. "Jess," he whispered. I was suddenly alert at his use of my first name. He searched my eyes then continued. "I…I love you." I smiled up at him. He kissed my forehead and pulled me into a closer, tighter embrace.
"Promise me, Rob, that no matter what happens you won't forget me."
"Never," he breathed into my hair. "Mastriani, there's no possible way I could ever forget you." Then he leaned down and kissed me. I kissed him in return with no holdbacks pushing up even closer to him. Rob didn't pull away as he generally would have. If anything he deepened the kiss.
I guess I should have been startled by this uncommon behavior- him embracing me, his pledge of love, and actually kissing me. Yet, now as we stood on my porch after a drive on his motorcycle, the circumstances were not normal. To night would be last time that we ever saw each other- at least until the world decided I was allowed to have a life. Tomorrow early in the morning I would be leaving Indiana to move in with someone I'd met once in my life in some city I wasn't even allowed to know the name of till I was there. I wouldn't be allowed to call my family, my best friend Ruth, my other friends, or even my boyfriend, Rob. This is what it meant to be Lightning Girl.
Rob eased away first much to my disappointment. I kept my eyes closed for a few moments longer so Rob wouldn't see the tears starting to from in my eyes. I hugged him tightly enjoying the warmth of his arms then pulled abruptly away. "Goodbye, Rob. I love you." I said then turned away. Rob reached out and grabbed my wrist pulling me back to him. Again his lips meet mine, but only for a moment.
"See you in a few years Mastriani." I bit my lower lip, nodded, then walked into my house. I would be leaving so early in the morning that there was no point in going to bed. I had already said goodbye to Ruth, her family, and my other friends. I had also already said goodbye to my family. They wouldn't be there in the morning to see my off. They were with Doug as they should be. I looked around the dark house. Even to my trained eyes I couldn't see them, but I knew they were there lurking in the shadows.
"Hey everyone. I got a few more things to pack. I'll be in my room," I told the invisible people. Then I ran upstairs the tears threatening to overflow. I heard rustling from the family room as I ran, but I didn't stop. I went to the bathroom and splashed water on my face then dried it off. Once assured that I was no longer in threat of breaking into tears I left the bathroom and went to my room. All of my stuff besides furniture, some clothes, and a vanilla envelope was in boxes except for a lone suitcase and a backpack.
"Jessica," a voice came from the doorway. I knew without looking it was Agent Smith. "You alright?"
I shrugged still not turning around. "I guess I'm as fine as I can be."
"Jessica, it's not forever. It's only till your trained and can be safe," she said.
"Yeah," I said disdainfully. "Which can't start to begin till I'm in my second year of college and won't end till five years later. Why can't I simply say I quit?"
"Just because you stop working with us doesn't mean you once did. Your past will not be deleted. People angry with you now will not simply forget their anger because you want to move on. This way you can at least protect yourself. Moving, I might remind you Jessica, was your decision."
"I would have made it even if I had quit. This is the second time since this mess happened that because of me Doug is in the hospital. I can't do this to my family anymore. Make them live in danger, in fear because of what I am. I won't allow it!" I yelled in frustration. I spun to face her.
"Jessica don't you think that your parents should be allowed to do what they want."
"Hey!" I said. "Don't speak that way! We made this decision as a family!"
Agent Smith sighed, nodded and then left my room. I changed into my pajamas and stuffed the clothes I was wearing into the suitcase. Then I curled up into my bed not intend of sleeping but more of a comfort routine. It was few hours of just laying in bed staring at the ceiling thinking of nothing before they came to get me to get ready to leave. In what seemed as a dream state I got out of bed, showered and got dressed in jeans with holes at the knees, a black loose top and the leather jacket that Rob had given me the night we saved Heather. I also had on the watch he had given me after the ordeal. Then I slung on my backpack, grabbed the suitcase and walked downstairs. There were about four FBI agents standing in front of the door waiting for me.
"Your boxes will be delivered to your new resident in a few days," one of the agents told me as I entered the room. I rolled my eyes. I mean, it wasn't like they hadn't told me fifty thousand times already. I knew exactly what was going down at this point. All except where I was going- for my own protection they can't tell me.
"We should be going," another said. I nodded and walked out the open front door with an agent flanking me on both sides. A white van was across the street. It was the van that long ago when I told the FBI that I had ran out of power had been following me non stop. It was in that van that I had first called the two agents assigned to my case, Special Agents Johnson and Smith, by their first names. It was the van that had transported me to and from the army base for the better part of a year now. It was the van that would now take me to the army base airport and my new life. I climbed into the van with just a little resentment. Special Agent Johnson sat in the driver seat and Special Agent Smith in the seat next to him. The two agents who had been flanking me climbed in after me slamming the door way too loudly for three in the morning. I looked at my house from the tinted windows of the van. Two shadows could be seen moving through it as the van took off down the street.
"Here's at little packet on where you're going to be living, Jessica," said one of the agents on the private plan escorting me to god knows where. At least, I told myself, once you get there you won't have agents stalking you all day. The first thing in the packet was a brochure on my new school. MY SCHOOL HAD A BROCHURE! IT'S A TOURIST ATTRACTMENT! HOW WEIRD IS THAT???? There was also a thing about golf. I'm not kidding. Golf. This place, yeah, it's known for its golf course. Finally I got to a thing about the actual city. The first lines of it… well it caught my attention. I'll give them that.
City by the Sea
Okay. Sea? Seriously? Hello called an ocean people! Ocean, not sea. Seas are nice and warm. FOUND ON EASTERN PART OF WORLD! Pacific Ocean? Yeah not so warm, let me tell you. Though the agent said that the water at Carmel is okay. "It's better than San Francisco Bay. Can't even swim in the bay. Carmel you can go in with a wet suit for surfing." Wet suit? I DON'T OWN A WET SUIT! And I so do not surf. What were they thinking making me move here? I mean yeah so I know the principle (yeah that person I mentioned earlier that I'm STAYING with. Yeah, he's the principle of my new school!), but can't I just like... I don't know stay in my own place? I mean its not like they have to worry about my, you know, sexual safety, considering that my boyfriend DOSEN'T EVEN KNOW WHERE I AM! Oh my gosh! This is so wrong.