A.N.May I say I am the most deeply apologetic person on the face of this planet. I'm so sorry for not updating, but I finally have the next chapter. If you hate me I understand, but please, don't kill the story!
Vaughn knocked on the door to Durst's office. He looked back smiling hopefully at Josie, who had her arms crossed with a determined expression on her face. His smile dying, he turned back to the door, just as Durst opened it.
"Mr. Pearson, Ms. Trent," she said, "Please, come in."
The two teenagers followed the older woman into her office, only to realize they were not alone. Standing at the window, looking out at the students, was Dr. Wrakes. He turned, hearing them come in, and fixed on Josie and Vaughn with an almost predatory smile.
"Ah, our two subjects," he replied, his voice giving Josie the creeps.
"Subjects?"exclaimed Vaughn, stopping, "Okay, what is going on?"
He and Josie shared a split second look. Dr. Wrakes turned from the window, his features darkening to sinister in the shade.
"Nothing to worry about, son. A poor choice in words. I meant the individuals I need to see," he said, holding up his hands in a 'comforting' manner, "Please, sit down. You too, Josie."
"How do you know my name?" Josie demanded, not taking a seat.
"Dr. Wrakes' hands dropped.
"I know everything about you, Josie," he said, "I need to in order to cure you. Now will you please sit down."
"Cure me?" Josie exclaimed as Vaughn said, "Cure her?"
"Sit," Dr. Wrakes replied.
"Not until I get some ans..."
"Sit down, now," Durst interrupted.
Josie and Vaughn looked at each other. Cautiously they took their seats in front of Durst's desk.
"Please don't be too harsh on them, Ms. Durst. They're frightened enough as it is," Wrakes said, walking up beside Durst with a wicked smile that sent the hairs on the back of Vaughn's neck shooting up, "I'm afraid that I'm a bringer of bad tiddings."
"Oh, I'm pretty sure there's nothing that could make this day worse," Josie shot out.
Dr. Wrakes ignored the redhead and continued, "I'm sure you are both awareof what happened inthe area behind the wall beside the school."
Josie and Vaughn nodded. Of course they knew about the Pearadyne accident! It's what caused the creation of the wormhole!
"Well," said Dr. Wrakes, "It seems that, Vaughn, your father, in his haste, accidently released a toxic element into the woods around the lab."
"And?" replied Josie.
"And, after I was informed by Ms. Durst of the hike you two decided to take, I took a look at your recent medical examination records."
Josie frowned. She didn't like where this was going. A look at Vaughn told her he felt the same.
"What did you find?" Vaughn demanded.
"It seems, my boy, that you and Ms. Trent, here, were contaminated by the element."
"Contaminated?" exclaimed Josie. Now she knew she didn't like where this is going.
"Yes," Dr. Wrakes replied. His eyes glinted in a way that made Josie think he knew what she was thinking.
"But we feel fine?" Vaughn said.
"Unfortunately, you won't be fine for long," Dr. Wrakes replied, "This toxin, once inside living tissue, effects cells so that they produce the toxin. Soon, the buildup will be so bad, normal cell functions will cease entirely. You will die."
Josie and Vaughn looked at him in utter disbelief.
This is a trap, thought Josie, Victor never used chemicals. He only needed the Chi'gong ball.
Or did he? a small voice in her head challenged, Maybe he did use chemicals. What if this buildup is causing you to hallucinate? Maybe you are sick.
No, Josie reprimanded herself firmly, Something is going on and Dr. Wrakes knows what. He's trying to stop me and Vaughn from changing history.
This isn't right, Vaughn thought at the same time, I know my dad. He would never use a toxin like this so close to the school. Never.
Are you sure, Vaughn? another part of him questioned.
Positive, he thought firmly, Completely positive.
"So how do you propose dealing with this?" Josie said, fixing an icy glare on Dr. Wrakes.
"Thankfully, the toxin has an antidote," he replied, "I came to collect you and Vaughn to take you to the lab. You'll only be gone a few days to purge the toxin."
"What about Marshall, Corrine, and Lucas?" asked Vaughn, "They went out there, too. What about Durst and Professor.."
Josie elbowed him in the arm.
"Ow," Vaughn exclaimed.
"Sorry," Josie interjected then whispered to Vaughn, "Z doesn't exist here, remember:"
"Oh, right, I forgot, " he looked up at Wrakes, "Why aren't they being taken or tested or whatever you're going to do?"
"Of course we checked their medical records," Wrakes replied with a false benevolence, "They were all clean, except for you two."
"Kinda convient you find it out now," Josie shot back, "Huh, Doc?"
"Ms. Trent, I'm warning you.."
"No, it's alright, she's obviously afraid. I'm not sure what you mean, Ms. Trent, but I assure you we discovered this only a couple weeks ago. Victor...the toxin was not on file when we went through the lab documents. I hate throwing suspicion around, but..."
Josie and Vaughn shared a look. They both knew the other knew this was all a lie.
"What if we refuse to come?" Vaughn asked.
Dr. Wrake smiled. His eyes darkened and he said, "My boy, I'm afraid you have no choice."