I'm really sorry this took so long! Err, yeah, well… enjoy the next chapter!

I don't own Kids Next Door.


Numbuh Four was in his room, lying on his back in the middle of his wrestling ring. The 10-year-old Australian was having a glare-down with his ceiling, and was, of course, losing. He "hmphed" and turned over on his side.

He had had his "Numbuh Four" time, spending almost an hour punching the crud out of his punching bag… and wall. It wasn't a secret that the kid got carried away with himself sometimes. It was also known by all that he did stupid thing when he was angry, and right now, Numbuh Four was still angry. Angry at these stupid pains that kept ruining his day.

How dare these stupid… whatever they were! They were ruining everything! This week had been nothing but people looking at him weirdly and asking him if he was alright. Of course he was alright! What else would he be? Wally Beetles never ever got sick, with a capital n.

At the beginning he'd thought he'd eaten something bad, but when the pain spells in his chest hadn't gone away, he knew that couldn't have been the reason. And they were painful… really painful. Not only that, he hadn't been sleeping well lately… hence Numbuh Three questioning him earlier that day. Geez, she didn't have to get all in his face about it!

The others couldn't know. They just… couldn't. Numbuh Four was already having problems; it would make things even worse if his buddies thought he was a wimpy dork with adult heartburn. What if they kicked him out for having adult problems? Or worse, decommissioned him? He bit his lip at the thought. No, it was better for everyone if he kept this little problem to himself. It would be easier for everyone that way, right? Right.

I can figure this out by myself, Numbuh 4 thought to himself. It… I'll just take some, eh, medicine or something. What's that crud my mom always gives me? Advil. Yeah. I'll be fi-

The blonde's thoughts were interrupted when he lurched forward, his hands immediately clenching into tight balls. "Not again…" Numbuh Four whispered miserably. The boy's lips trembled, tightly pursed together, and his breathing became short and obviously strained. He clenched his teeth and threw his head back as he felt pain shoot out from his chest and spread through his upper body. It was nearly unbearable.

C'mon mate, don't cry… ya haven't yet, don't start now… He forced the tears back before it subsided and he was able to let out a deep breath.

His former medicine thoughts weren't sounding so hot anymore. Could any medicine cure him of something so… horrible?

Numbuh Four pulled his knees to his chest and rested his head on his knees. That little "pain spell" had been anything but little. In fact, it had been the longest and most painful one yet. He frowned; What if… what if he never got better?

What if he was stuck with these horrible aches… forever?

A knock on the door cut of that pretty ugly train of thought. The 10-year-old operative shook his head and took a deep breath. He wasn't being himself. He knew that much. This whole angsting thing was going to have to stop.

"Whaddya want?" Numbuh Four called, tripping out of his wrestling ring to answer the door. "You can come in!" None other than Numbuh Three let herself in, smiling down at him from the top platform of his room.

"Heya Numbuh Four!" she greeted, waving a sleeve-covered hand at him. The said Australian finally made it up to her level (his room was freaking huge) and stood before her.

"What do you want?" He repeated. Numbuh Three wasn't fazed by his rudeness; she was used to it and knew he didn't always mean it.

"I wanted to ask you a question!" she giggled.

Numbuh Four raised an eyebrow. "Well?"

"Well, if you haven't noticed, you missed dinner silly!" Numbuh Four blinked. He hadn't noticed. And he never usually forgot a meal… "So me and the guys were talking during dinner, and we decided that you've been acting weird lately and need some cheering up. I mean, you've been having these quiet time thingies all week! Are you sure you're okay?" Her gaze became skeptical as it swept over him.

He scoffed. "Of course I'm fine! Stop askin' me that!"

"But I could help you get better! I'm a Kid Next Door official nurse, ya know."

"I don't need yo' help. I can take care o' moiself."

Kuki's face fell a bit, and she tilted her head. "I don't get why you never let anyone help you, Wally."

This frustrated him a bit. "Weren't you here ta ask me a question or somethin'?"

"Oh yeah!" Kuki's face perked up again. "Anyway, we agreed that we're gonna have a soooper fun sleepover, just the five of us! We haven't had one in a loong time, and it would be just the thing to make you happy again!" She smiled at him. He had been planning on asking her how a sleepover would ever make him feel better, but instead, he just he smiled back. Numbuh Three could have that effect on him, sometimes…

"So, you wanna?" She asked excitedly.

He sighed. "Yeah, sho." What could it hurt? Besides, he never failed to have fun with his friends, no matter what they were doing.

"Yay! Alright, get on your pj's and bring your sleeping bag to the living room! The rest of the guys are already there. I just have to get my pajamas on!" She grinned as she filled him in.

"Pajamas? But it's only, like, 7 o' clock!"

"It's nine-thirty, silly!"

"…oh." Guess the time slipped past faster than he'd thought. The blonde Aussie glanced at the Japanese girl in front of him. She was just standing there, smiling at him. Kinda cute look for her, actually-

"So," Wally said quickly, "err… I'm gonna go, eh, get dressed now," he jerked his thumb behind him, "So, can you, eh…"

"Right!" Numbuh Three seemed to be knocked out of her stupor, and she flushed. "Come to the common room when you're done!" With that she walked away quickly, leaving Numbuh Four by himself in the hallway.

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It wasn't long before Numbuh Four showed up in the common room in his orange footy-pajamas, dragging his sleeping bag behind him. The others already had their sleeping bags formed in a circle; Numbuh Three next to Numbuh Two, Numbuh Two next to Numbuh Five, Numbuh Five next to Numbuh One, and Numbuh One next to Numbuh Three. Numbuh Two was already dealing out cards in the middle of the circle, most likely to play his favorite game, BS.

"Hey, guys." He greeted as he squeezed in between Numbuh Three and Numbuh One.

"Hi Wally!"

"Hey, Numbuh Four."

"Hello Numbuh Four."

"Whatsup boy? Glad you could join us." Only Numbuh Five's smile was visible from under her cap as she handed him his pile of cards.

"Thanks." He took them from her and settled down on his stomach. He didn't bother to organize them from least to greatest, unlike the others. He glanced up at his team, watching them.

"Numbuh Five can see yo' cards, Numbuh Two."

"Hey! Stop cheating!" Hoagie pulled back his precious cards quickly, scrambling to the far corners of his sleeping bag like an enraged squirrel.

"Numbuh Five was not cheatin'. Don't be such a big baby. So who's goin' first?" Numbuh Five leaned forward in her blue robe.

"Oi will!" Numbuh Four offered eagerly. "Oi got lotsa aces." He fumbled through his unorderly cards, unaware that Numbuh Three was looking over his shoulder. "There!" He put down five cards in the middle of the circle. Everyone looked at each other with raised eyebrows.

"That's BS, Numbuh Four." Numbuh One said coolly. "I saw you put down three jacks, a five, and a joker. You flashed them to everybody before you put them down…"

"Ah, crud!" Everyone giggled as the dimwitted kid picked his cards back up again, and they kept playing.

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After three games of BS, one game of uno, hide and seek, freezetag, an ice cream eating contest, a soda chugging contest, watching a movie, and prank calling the toiletnator… Sector V was due for a sit- down. The five re-gathered at their sleeping bags and plopped down on them, all facing the middle on their stomachs.

"Man, I'm tired. What time is it?" Numbuh Two heaved out a sigh and burped loudly, much to the disgust of the others. "Hehe… excuse me." Numbuh One looked at his digital watch.

"It's about a quarter till one. What do you guys want to do now?" The bald boy scanned his team for suggestions.

"Hmm…" Numbuh Four's eyes were hidden under his long blonde bangs, and he was repeatedly blowing his loose hairs around as he spoke. "How 'bout we… ding dong ditch people's houses!" The Australian shot up from laying down with excitement at his idea. Only to be shot right back down.

"Pass. Numbuh Five don't feel like movin' anymo'." The dark skinned girl grabbed her soda and gulped it down, trying to keep herself awake.

"Agreed. How about we play a game in which we don't have to move?"

"I know!" Numbuh Three suddenly piped in. "We can play truth or DARE!" She emphasized the last word, her almond-shaped eyes growing huge with enthusiasm. "That game is always SO much fun!"

"Truth or dare!" Numbuh Four scoffed. "That game is fo' babies!"

"Then you don't have to play, since you're such a grown up boy." Everyone giggled at Numbuh Four, and the defeated kid wrinkled his nose and crossed his arms over his chest. Numbuh Five ignored him and turned to Kuki. "Good idea, Numbuh Three. Why don't you go first?"

"Okay! Let's see… I pick… you, Numbuh Five! Truth or dare?" Wally rolled his eyes. That girl was going to kill herself one day with all of that smiling.

"Alright, Numbuh Five chooses dare. Hit me, girl." How bad could Kuki's dares be?

"Hmm… I dare you to… hug everybody!" The ecstatic girl giggled with her purple sleeved hands over her mouth. "Go on, do it!"

Numbuh Five slapped her forehead. "Hug everybody?" She repeated. "Err… Numbuh Five was hopin' fo' a… cooler dare," That last part was mumbled; she didn't want to hurt her friend's feelings.

"Ha! Still wanna play truth or dare now?" Numbuh Four smirked at the dared one from across the circle. He elbowed Numbuh Two, still laughing, and the pilot snickered.

"Ya'll be quiet before I come over there!" Standing up indignantly, Numbuh Five opened her arms unenthusiastically, a bored look on her face. "Alright ya'll… come get a hug from Numbuh Five. She padded her fuzzy-slippered feet over to Numbuh One on her left, and stooped to wrap her arms around him. Numbuh One grinned at her and she rolled her eyes, grinning back. Letting go of him, Numbuh Five trudged over to Numbuh Four, and opened her arms. "I'm not stoopin' down fo' you. You get yo' lil' butt up here and have a hug." At that statement Numbuh Four burst out laughing, but was cut off when his friend grabbed him by his collar and gave him a rough embrace. After a few seconds she threw him back down again, smirking. Ouch.

"Hay! That hurt!" The Aussie rubbed his backside and pouted.

"How's that fo' a hug from Numbuh Five?" She stuck her tongue out at him as she made her way over to Numbuh Three. The excited Asian was already up and awaiting her hug.

"Yay! My turn!" Numbuh Three threw her arms around her friend and practically grinned her face off. "Aren't hugs the best?"

"Uh… yeah sho'." Numbuh Five let go of her and moved on to her last target. "Okay Numbuh Two. Yo' turn." Again, she crouched down and enveloped his larger frame in a hug. All the while Numbuh Two sat shock-still, his goggles round and his cheeks aflame. Soon enough Numbuh Five stood up again and walked over to her sleeping bag, leaving Hoagie to his, err, thoughts. Numbuh Four saw the way he blushed at her touch, but decided not to tease him about it until later. Heheh. Easy blackmail fo' lata.

"Alright, Numbuh Five did her dare. Now it's her turn." She scanned the circle for her chosen one. "Numbuh Five picks…" Her eyes landed on her still flustered teammate. "Numbuh Two." This caused the pilot to look up, surprise evident in his goggle-covered eyes.

"Me?" He blinked. "Well… okay. I pick truth." He sort of regretted picking truth when an evil smile appeared on Numbuh Five's face.

"Heh, you asked for it man. Kay… have you ever liked anybody besides my sista'?" The question made the boy do a double take, and he blushed as everyone stared him down.

"Uhh…"

"Well?" Asked Numbuh One, now interested.

"Spit it out already!" Impatient Numbuh Four, as always. Hoagie gulped and glanced sideways at Numbuh Five, his stomach doing a back flip. Why did the spotlight have to be on him all of a sudden? Crud, he could feel himself start to blush!

"Y-yeah." Was Numbuh Two's answer. Numbuh Five tilted her head to the side, as if expecting more.

"Who?"

"Ooh ooh, do we know her?"

"Is she as nerdy as you are?" Questions rained down upon to poor kid, and he unconsciously answered them in order in his mind. Numbuh Five, she's awesome. Yeah, duh! Definitely no way! Err…

No way was Numbuh Two revealing anything to anybody right now. Not in a million, kabillion, buhmillion...

Hoagie put up his hands as if to shield them all off. "H-hey! I already answered my question- you don't get to ask another!" This seemed to shut them up, and his friends sat back and relented. Phew. Trying to change the subject fast, Numbuh Two pointed a finger at Numbuh One. "Truth or dare?"

"Truth," The leader answered without hesitation.

"Okay… who would you choose, us, or Lizzie?" The pilot grinned; this should be interesti-

"You guys, of course." Numbuh One shot back an answer before Hoagie could even finish his train of thought.

"Oh… really?" Numbuh Two beamed at Nigel, along with everybody else.

"Of course! You know I couldn't do without my team." Maybe that was the wrong answer, for everyone gave him 'whatever' looks. He quickly added, "I mean… I couldn't go on without my best friends." That seemed to do the trick, for everyone was smiling again.

"Are we really your bestest best friends Numbuh One?" Numbuh Three said with a hopeful, sweet voice. 'Duh,' thought Numbuh Four, looking at her from the corner of his eye.

"Who else would they be?" Nigel laughed slightly and leaned back on his propped up pillow.

"Forever and ever?"

"I hope so." Everyone's thoughts immediately migrated to the concept of decommissioning, and they sighed.

"Numbuh Five don't wanna forget ya'll, even if it is over two years away."

Numbuh Two nodded slowly, chin in his palms. "Tell me about it…"

Numbuh Four pursed his lips together as he glanced around at his suddenly downtrodden best friends. Decommissioning was gonna suck. He let his bangs fall in the way of his eyes as dreary thoughts overtook him, too. Would decommissioning really be… the end? He didn't hear as his friends began talking again. He was too… ugh. Just think- no more tree house, no more Abby, Hoagie, Nigel… no more Kuki…

Suddenly Wally had the wind knocked out of him again, and he let out a yelp. Immediately the others turned to him, concerned. Crud.

"Numbuh Four, what's wrong dude?"

"Yeah, you look like yo' about to cry!"

"Whoa, are you alright?"

Numbuh Four opened his mouth to talk, but it snapped shut again in an instant. He pulled his knees close and buried his head in them, clenching the fabric of his pj's for support. He couldn't take all these questions. It hurt too much…

"N-numbuh Four?" Kuki's voice came out smaller than she meant it to be. The others gathered around him, kneeling down and trying to get a look at his face. She reached out a sleeved hand to touch his shoulder… "Are you-" As soon as her hand came in contact with his pajamas, the blonde practically flew to his feet and sprinted out of the room, clutching at his front.

Everybody's eyes were wide with shock, their gazes locked on the doorway he had left through. They looked at each other, not exactly sure what to do. This was so unlike Numbuh Four- one minute laughing and talking with everybody, the next in a feeble position and running away? Did they miss something?

"Uhh…" Numbuh Five broke the silence. She glanced down at Numbuh Three, who was still on the floor. The girl's hand was still in midair, as if to touch an invisible person; a sad look graced her features.

"Should… should someone go after him?" Numbuh Two's head was down as he questioned his teammates, looking for a volunteer. He had never been very comfortable in situations like this.

"You know what would happen if we did, Numbuh Two." Numbuh One's hand was adjusting his sunglasses, something he did in unusual situations. "You know Numbuh Four. Nobody takes care of him but him." The others nodded, still a bit unsure of themselves. "Let's just… keep playing." He spotted Numbuh Three, who was staring off into space forlornly. "So, eh, Numbuh Three? Truth or dare?"

The girl turned to look at him and smiled again. "Truth, silly."

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Running out on his friends wasn't exactly one of the things on his list that night, but he couldn't change things now. The guys probably thought he was a nut job for that. Numbuh Four sighed and cracked his knuckles as he walked through the halls, thinking of what had happened. His next thought made him cringe.

Writhing in pain, alone, for what seemed like forever… well, that hadn't been on his list either. And yet, here he was, chest still aching, coming back to join his friends. He checked his watch; it was almost three o' clock in the morning now. The guys were probably asleep already.

Sure enough, when Numbuh Four reached the common room, it was dark, and their former circle of sleeping bags had been morphed into a pile of lumps. He felt the corners of his lips twitch upwards as he walked towards his friends. It seemed like they always knew what to do. When they hadn't followed him to his room, Numbuh Four had been grateful. It was better if they didn't see him like that; so… vulnerable.

As he neared them, he was surprised to see that Numbuh Three's sleeping bag was empty. Automatically he began to look around for her, and it didn't take long before he spotted the open balcony door. Numbuh Four wasn't that dumb; he could put two and two together. And he knew that she always loved the big ship deck balcony.

Quietly, the small boy tiptoed towards the open doorway. He had to stifle a laugh when he passed Numbuhs One, Two, and Five; it looked like Numbuh Five had somehow managed to use both her male teammates as teddy bears. Oh, now this was a Kodak moment. Too bad he didn't have his camera with him…

As soon as Numbuh Four stepped out into the cool night, a breeze met him; blowing his bangs back and making him shiver. He wrapped his arms around himself and scanned the deck for his female friend. It wasn't long before he saw her silhouette in the darkness.

He moved closer, and her form became more visible. She had brought a pillow out with her, and she was currently laying on it; her dark eyes staring up into the stars, and her jet black hair strewn out beneath her. It was weird, seeing her so quiet, and… peaceful. Seeing her like this made her look even more pretty…

Numbuh Four frowned and shook his head. How many times was he going to have to remind himself that he didn't like-like girls? He didn't! Err… right? …Right?

Finally he reached Numbuh Three's side, and he looked down at her. She didn't seem too surprised to see him. In fact, she just smiled back up at him.

"Hi, Numbuh Four." Her voice was so quiet, it was almost a whisper.

"Hi…" Numbuh Four found himself trying to avoid her gaze; he tilted his head up at looked at the stars. "Whatcha doin' out 'ere, anyway?"

"I just didn't feel like sleeping." This answer satisfied him, and he nodded. Silence fell over the pair.

"So…"

"So… you wanna sit here with me?" Numbuh Four shrugged and sat down. He sat Indian style and stared off into space, trying not to lock eyes with his Asian friend. It wasn't long before he felt someone staring at him. His heart flip-flopped when he realized it was Numbuh Three.

"Whot?" he questioned. Copying him, Numbuh Three pulled herself up to Indian style too. She looked a little uncomfortable.

"…I was really worried about you, ya know." Almost as if embarrassed at what she just said, Numbuh Three looked down at her feet.

Numbuh Four blushed. "R-really?"

"Yeah…"

He wasn't exactly sure what to say. "Oh… well… I'm sorry I made you worried… I guess."

"That's okay." Suddenly her head shot up so fast that he flinched. "What happened back there?"

Should he come clean about it? He bit his lip; she was staring at him, almost like she was troubled. Deep down, he didn't want to trouble her. He decided to tell her half of the truth. "I don't really know."

Numbuh Three perked up. "What do you mean?"

"I…" Numbuh Four took a deep breath. What did he have to lose? The pain was getting to the point where he didn't care anymore, and the fact that she was anxious for him made him… feel different about things. "I-I've been havin' these things… these aches."

"Aches?" Numbuh Three's head cocked to the side.

"Y-yeah." He was suddenly frustrated just thinking about it. Wally put his chin in his hands and stared at his covered feet. "And they hurt… a lot."

Immediately her expression changed to one of sympathy and sadness. "Oh… I'm sorry." She watched as his features transformed to a frown.

"Yeah well, I don't need yo' sorrys. I can take care o' myself."

"Well… are you sure? Because I could maybe help you." This caused him to look up at her, his green eyes blinking rapidly.

"I-I… I don't need help..." She could tell he sounded unsure of himself.

"Tomorrow I could look you over in the med room. I think it could help. And it could be fun! We could hang out together and stuff."

Again, she was shot down. "I already told ya no." Numbuh Four glared at her. It seemed like nothing would get through to him. Nothing…

"Please?" Numbuh Three's gaze was so hard that it was beginning to almost scare him.

Say no. Say no. Say no ya big stupid idiot-

"Fine already!" The blonde Australian hadn't meant for it to come out so loud. She recoiled and her lower lip trembled- "I mean… okay. B-but only tomorrow!"

His harsh whispers didn't faze Numbuh Three. She just smiled warmly at him. "Good." The small Japanese girl laid back down on her pillow, her Australian friend lying down with her. She scooted over to make room for him on her pillow, all the while smiling up at the vast blanket of stars.

Numbuh Four blushed; the thought of being so close to her made his heart speed up. Slowly, he set his blonde head next to her black one on her small pink pillow. Usually he would never volunteer to be this close to a girl. Something must have changed… somehow…

"Numbuh Four?" He heard her voice ring out softly from next to him.

"Uh huh…?"

"I just remembered that," the paused to let out a yawn, "you never got to have your turn."

Wally could feel his own eyelids drooping. "My turn fo' whot?"

"Truth or dare, silly."

"Right..." He closed his eyes and inhaled deeply, almost forgetting he was beside her. "It doesn't matte anymo', Numbuh Three."

"Of course it does, mister…!" She let out a tired, almost drunken giggle. "Truth or dare?"

"Whot? I'm tired, I don't wanna-"

"C'mon Wally, just pick one. Truth or dare?"

Oh, come on. He couldn't be that much of a pushover. "Truth." He grumbled.

"Really?" Numbuh Three laughed slightly. "I always thought you were the type to pick dare."

Numbuh Four rolled his eyes. "I'm tired, I don't feel loike gettin' up." His eyes fell closed as he felt the prospect of sleep begin to overpower him. Only the crickets' song could be heard as Numbuh Three relented from her chatter and pondered over her question.

Her face broke out into a wide grin when it suddenly came to her.

"Have you ever kissed a girl?" That definitely woke Numbuh Four up; the stunned boy's eyes were suddenly wide awake again.

"W-whot? You can't ask me that!" Redness spread over his chaffed cheeks.

Numbuh Three smirked. "I can ask you whatever I want, dummyhead. Now answer the question, or else you'll have to do the bad thing people do when they don't answer truth questions."

For some reason, Numbuh Four really did not want to know what that thing was. He rolled over to his side and gave her a helpless look, but she just crossed her arms over her chest and grinned at him, her eyes almost falling closed. Crud. Of course he, Numbuh Four, had never kissed anyone in his life (except his mom, of course)… b-but it wasn't like he wanted Numbuh Three to know that!

Letting out an aggravated sigh, he turned so he was on his back again, staring at Numbuh Three from the corner of his eye. It almost looked as if she was asleep, with her eyes almost fully closed. That thought entered his head again. She looks pretty…

Numbuh Four slapped his forehead. This was getting pretty annoying. Suddenly he cringed as his former idea was replaced with another- If he thought she was pretty, then what if other boys did too? What if she'd already been kissed? Anger found the blonde at the very notion. Who'd kissed her? Is this why she wanted to know if he'd kissed a girl? To make fun of him? Ugh.

C'mon, yo' getting carried away. Just… suck it up an' answer her, ya wuss.

"No." His answer was heated and short.

Numbuh Three opened her eyes to look at him. "Really?"

"I said no, okay! So can we please jus' chainge the subject? Yeesh!"

"It's okay Numbuh Four. I've never kissed anyone either." Surprise was the first thing he felt, then relief. He watched as she sat up with a sigh.

"Oh." Not liking her looming over him, he sat up too. "Well… okay then."

"Do you know how to kiss?"

"…I don't know…"

"Yeah…" Numbuh Three took a deep breath, as if preparing for what she wanted to say next. "Maybe…" She bit her lip and looked away from him. "Maybe we could teach each other."

"H-huh?"

"You know, so we'll know when we wanna kiss someone."

Both kids were blushing; if it hadn't been dark out, the world would've been able to see Numbuh Four looking like a tomato. The flustered Australian's eyes were almost popping out of his head, and the large green orbs could be seen through the gaps in his bangs. Thoughts zoomed through his head at a zillion miles an hour.

She wanted to kiss him! He felt the heat radiate off of his cheeks. Numbuh Three wanted to kiss him! Him! Numbuh Four bit his bottom lip. He wasn't supposed to want to kiss girls. That was a teen thing; not a kid thing. But… technically she didn't say she wanted to kiss him per say; she said it would be for when they really wanted to kiss people.

For some reason, he felt his heart sink at that.

However…

Maybe it was the lack of sleep, but he couldn't find the word "no" in his vocabulary at the moment.

"I-I guess." The so-called "tough as nails" operative suddenly found himself feeling really small. "So now what do we do?"

Numbuh Three pursed her lips and thought. "I think when you wanna kiss someone, you get real close to them first."

His eyebrows shot up. "Eh, close?"

"Of course, silly. Here, I'll do it." Still sounding tired, the Japanese 10-year-old scooted so she was directly in front of him, their knees touching. She put her hands on his shoulders, making him flinch suddenly.

"Don't wiggle," She ordered softly. Beginning to lean forward slowly, she spoke again. "Now close your eyes…"

Automatically his eyes flew shut. Oh man, his heart was pounding so loud he was sure she could hear it. Not sure what to expect, Numbuh Four puckered his lips slightly; he could not believe he was doing this.

And then, he felt something soft brush against his lips; almost like a feather. A warm feeling washed over him, and he felt his face grow hot again. A few seconds later, the delicate touch he had felt was gone, and he opened his eyes again.

Numbuh Three was there in front of him, staring at him and blushing. "Now we'll know," she whispered.

"Yeah." His voice came out sounding much softer than he had meant it to be. Silence. "Let's just not tell the others about this…" He trailed off, feeling suddenly guilty.

"Okay." Her hair hung daintily around her face, the breeze blowing it slightly. Numbuh Four took a deep breath. He should tell her. Now.

"Numbuh Three?"

"Yeah?"

"I-I…"

"Yess?" She smiled widely at him, her eyes brightening.

"I…" Numbuh Four sighed and jabbed a finger over his shoulder. "I'm gonna head onto bed…"

Her smile faded in an instant. "Oh, okay." She watched him stand up.

Good going Numbuh Four. So much for being brave.

"Alroight, well… see ya in the morning." He walked away, thoughts of what they had just done making him blush again.

"See you."

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As Numbuh Four lay down in his sleeping bag that night, he noticed that the ache in his chest had been replaced with a soft, warm feeling. A small smile outlined his face as he drifted off to sleep.


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