Author's Note- I'm so sorry about the wait, but life has been a bitch to me lately. I've had the ACTs ((and probably failed them. Unless the last nine answers to the math part is "D" I'm really just screwed.)), then my neighbor died and our families were close. Then I had the AP exams in both history and English to study for. And then, my one good friend just died in a car accident. It was horrible. But while I was moping, I read a lot of X-men fanfics, and I got inspired again. Sorry for the wait, but I'm back! And only like...4-ish more chapters :)

LazuliteRose- Your threatening reviews make me feel loved. Had you not be so consistent with the story, I don't think I would have kept writing. So thank you. Hopefully I don't disappoint And I know that I promised you. I sawry.

Disney Queen- It's nice to know that you are reading. Your review made me smile :D

Disclaimer: Disclaimers are disheartening to write. It reminds me how broke I am and how I don't own anything.

Alyson huffed in annoyance. This stupid boy and his running. Sprinting after him, Alyson hurried after Danny. "Danny! Danny, stop!" He just kept ignoring her and led her farther and farther from the others. "Daniel!"

Danny turned around and shot his arms out to slam against the wall on either side of Alyson. She pressed herself against the wall, trapped between Danny's arms. The look in his eyes was feral, and she could have sworn that he would snarl at her. Determined to not show her fear, Alyson straightened up and looked Danny in the eye. "Why do you keep running?"

His eyes flashed. "Why do you keep following me!?"

Clenching her fists, Alyson shouted back, tears threatening to fall from her eyes, "Because that's what you do with people that you care about… you make sure that they don't do something to hurt themselves when something bad happens!"

Fire dying out, Danny sighed. He rested his forehead against Alyson's. "Look, Alyson. I'm a freak. Dangerous even. I should have never came. I'll just end up harming you. It's best that you stay away. Let me just go into my room, I'll pack up, and leave. I'm sorry I couldn't win it for you."

Danny pulled away, letting his arms drop. Shock came across Alyson's face. "…No. You can't. Danny!"

He turned around, probably intending to warn Alyson again, but was thrown off when Alyson launched herself at him, wrapping her arms around his waist and resting her head on Danny's chest. "Don't leave me," she pleaded into his chest, holding him tight.

She felt him sigh, then promise, "I won't leave you…"


When the two entered into Mrs. McAlister's "office," they entered a mad house. Everyone was in a craze, shouting things while things were being shouted back at them. Noticing that Danny and Alyson were finally there, Mrs. McAlister motioned for Danny to sit while she regained order. "Ok, ok! One at a time!" she ordered.

Hunter made his statement first. "He" Hunter thrusted a threatening finger at Danny," needs to be taken off the show!"

Immediately, Alyson jumped to Danny's defense. "You are just jealous! Your magician just levitated a 60 watt light bulb, I mean, MY guy just made a mechanical bull appear."

Sighing as if Alyson were a little kid that he had to explain himself to, Hunter stated, "That's exactly my point. There is no possible way he could do that!"

Rolling her eyes at Hunter she retorted, "But he did."

"Ok, how?" asked Hunter, attention moving from Alyson to Danny, who was sitting at a desk, looking nervous. "Tell me how you did your trick."

"A good magician never reveals his secrets," recited Alyson to Hunter. She gave a nod to Danny, who just shrugged, giving her a small smile.

Smirking, Hunter realized, "Or maybe it's because he can't. Because it wasn't a trick."

Entering the conversation, Mrs. McAlister interjected, "Then what are you suggesting?"

Straightening up, Hunter answered, a bit uncertain, "I, uh, think he might be a, erm, maybe, it was real."

The eye rolls and soft laughing were abundant in the room once his words were spoken. Alyson looked at Hunter, questioning the mental state of her normally logical rival, while Danny just stared at his hands. Mrs. McAlister looked doubtful. "Real?"

"Um, yeah. I think he might...I mean, what if he actually had magical powers?" Hunter faded out a bit at the end, realizing how he sounded.

"Oh, yeah," stated Alyson sarcastically. "Do you have any idea how crazy you sound?"

It was obvious that Hunter did know, and yet, it was obvious that he believed. "Look, it's just possible, you know? Think about it. There is a lot of bizarre things we can't explain. Like...like ESP and mind readers...and..."

"And Donald Trump's hair," threw in Cedric.

"Yeah, and people who make mechanical bulls appear out of thin air," finished Alyson, sarcasm heavy in her voice.

Hunter gave a humorless laugh. "While we are at it, I think it was Danny here that made Brandon disappear in the first challenge."

Alyson sighed and turned to Danny. "Look, as much as I believe that it's a total violation of the magician's code, why don't you just tell Hunter your trick so we can just" Alyson threw her hands in the air "move on."

"You heard her, man, give it up," ordered Hunter.

"Yeah dude, tell us how you did it, we really wanna know," whined Brandon.

"Ok fine!" snapped Danny. "You want to know how I did it? Hunter is right. I don't know how I did it. I don't understand anything about it. These things just happen to me!" Glaring at Hunter, he added, "There, are you happy?"

"Very good Danny, that's the ideal answer," drawled Max from the doorway. "You're really learning how to play this game."

Looking confused, Hunter asked, "What? What are you talking about?"

Smirking, Max answered, "Danny just used one of the many tricks we magicians have in our black bag."

"I have no idea what you are talking about," stated Danny, turning to face Max.

"Do you know how many endless illusionists dodge publicity by claiming to have paranormal powers?" asked Max.

"But I'm serious! I have no idea how the mechanical bull got there! Brandon just said that he 'felt like a horse's rear end' and it appeared!" cried out Danny.

"Well, that's very interesting," stated Max, clearly not believing him. "So I'll suppose that you wouldn't mind me getting together a group of experts and testing your claim, now would you?"

"What sort of experts?" asked Mrs. McAlister.

"Well, as president as the World Wide Skeptics I would suggest that you start with me," replied Max.

"World Wide skeptics? You?" Danny looked in shock.

"Surprised? Don't be. No one knows better then a professional magician what nonsense real powers are. In fact there is a long and lustrous history of true magicians debunking paranormal pretenders because what we do is perform practiced entertainment and every fraud that comes along only serves to devalue our skills. So what do you say, young man? Will you agree to settle this nonsense once and for all?"


Alyson couldn't find Danny after the incident in the office. She didn't even know if he agreed to the testing. As soon as Max asked, Danny excused himself from the room. After exchanging some heated words with Hunter, Alyson went out in search for Danny.

First stop was his room. Knocking on the door, Alyson called out, "Danny? Danny, it's me. Open up!"

When no one answered, Alyson went off to the library, where from a window she watched Max's experts arrive. But still no Danny. Heading off to the secret room, Alyson held her breath. This was the only spot left for Danny to have gone. If he wasn't there, then that meant that he had left her...and that he lied.


Exhaling the breath she was holding, Alyson didn't realize how high her hopes got as she twisted the lock on the giant value. Once she saw the familiar head of brown hair bent over a book in the secret room, Alyson entered. "What are you doing here?" she asked. "The panel's waiting." Danny was reading a book, and shrugged at this statement. "Hello?" Alyson was tempted to wave her hand in front of his face, but then he moved.

Danny tore his eyes away from his book to look at Alyson's. "Alyson, I can't do this."

"What? Why not?"

"Because whatever way it ends up, it's just gonna be a huge disaster for me."

Alyson's brow crinkled in confusion. "Why? So far you've played it perfectly. Seriously, do you even know what great TV you've been creating?" When Danny's gaze left hers and went back to the book, it dawned on Alyson. "Wait, you don't seriously believe that you have real powers, do you?"

Taking a deep breath, Danny tried to explain. "Look. I'm going to try to explain something to you, but you have to promise me you'll just sit there and quietly and just let me get through it."

Sinking into the seat next to Danny, Alyson replied, "I'll be as silent as a monk. So what's the deal?"

"C'mon. You're a smart girl. Think logically. How did those doves appear in your van? How did Brandon disappear from a stage with no trap door and how is no one missing a mechanical bull that just suddenly appears on stage? I mean, do you honestly believe it's because I'm such a good magician?" Danny was barely keeping in his anger.

"What are you saying?" asked Alyson, trying to follow along.

"I've said this before...I'm a freak," stated Danny, voice slightly cracking. "I'm a freak."

Alyson was trying so hard to believe him, since he believed that he was right. But she was a science girl, and what he was saying was not logical. "Your powers..."

"Look. About three years ago, I was walking home from school and I saw this really cool skateboard. I remembered thinking how much I wanted it, and then, it just appeared underneath me, and I was riding it."

"It just appeared?" interjected Alyson.

"No, I made it appear," cleared up Danny. "And then this one time, a bully was making fun of my hair or my pants or something, and I just wanted him to get lost. And then he was gone! They found him like ten feet up in an oak tree, hanging by his belt loop."

"How is that even possible?"

"That's it! I don't know! Ever since that first incident, I have been driving myself crazy trying to figure out what's wrong with me. I can't control my magic, Alyson. I don't know how, or when things are going to happen, they just do!" Danny threw his hands up in defeat.

"It...it must be so scary for you," realized Alyson, finally believing Danny.

Danny gave a humorless laugh. "It is. It's um...it's terrifying," he admitted to her. "That's why I don't have any friends. And that's why I can't get up there in front of those experts. Either nothing will happen and I look like a totally fraud or my powers will go outta control and they recognize this 'great gift of mine' and I'll live on some government operating table being poked and probed like an alien lab rat!"

Sighing deeply, Alyson sympathized. "Look. I can't even come close to saying I'm processing all this, but I certainly do know what it's like to be the outcast. The weirdo. The one that nobody else can ever relate to. Not much fun, right?"

Danny shook his head in agreement. "No, not so much."

Breaking into a small smile, Alyson said, "See? This is why this is so perfect. Maybe all you need through this is just one person. One person who is going to believe in you."

Smiling back, Danny whispered, "And that person is you."

"If you want me to be," answered Alyson. She gave a small shrug. "Isn't that what friends are for?"

Danny smiled and mumbled, "Yeah I guess."

"And you know what else? I think you should go face Max's experts. Maybe they can help you. Maybe they can explain all this." Alyson felt bold and reached for Danny's hand across the table. Slipping her hand into his, she briefly noted how they seem to fit perfectly together; like two puzzle pieces. "What do you really have to lose, Danny? I mean, isn't this why you were so desperate to get here in the first place? To find the truth? These guys might finally give you the answers you need."

Giving her that lop-sided grin that she loved so much, Danny pulled his hand out of Alyson's. "Thanks Alyson. I think I'll do it. But...I think we can make them wait a bit more. I kind of want to collect my thoughts."

"Sure," said Alyson as she got up from her seat. She turned towards the exit, hesitated, and then made up her mind.

Going over to where Danny was sitting, Alyson bent down and wrapped him in a big hug. Hugging her back, Danny drew her into his lap, and they held each other, both gaining strength from the other.

Head tucked under Danny's chin, Alyson leaned into Danny's chest and just listened to his heart beat. If just being here for him was what Danny needed her to do, she could do that for him.

They sat that way for how long, Alyson couldn't tell. But then she heard something. Danny was singing softly.

Just another morning glory,

one more twist inside of this wide ride.

Another chapter in the story,

but I can't hide, the way I feel inside.

It was beautiful, Alyson decided. And the fact that he was sharing it with her made it even more special to her.

Cause I'm a stranger in a strange land,

and I'm a million miles from my home.

And if I gotta take my last stand,

I won't stand alone.

I won't stand alone.

I won't stand alone.

I won't stand alone.

I won't stand alone.

When Alyson recognized the second part repeating, she joined in.

Cause I'm a stranger in a strange land.

((Cause you're a stranger in a strange land.))

And I'm a million miles from my home.

((And you're a million miles from your home.))

If I have to take my last stand,

((If you have to take your last stand,))

I won't stand alone.

((You won't stand alone.))

I won't stand alone.

((You won't stand alone.))

I won't stand alone.

((You won't stand alone.))

I won't stand alone.

((You won't stand alone.))

The song finished, both of their voices in perfect harmony. Once it was over, they remained in their former positions, neither wanting to get up and face the real world at the moment.

As Alyson closed her eyes and focused on Danny's heartbeat, his smell surrounding her, and the warmth from his body, she realized that that was the exact moment that she fell in love with him.

Author's Note- I so wanted a make out scene. But I don't see that in either character. The hug scene in the way beginning was at first a kiss scene, but I changed it . Trying to slow the story down, in a way. Woot! So I updated! Viva la resistance! Hopefully my lack of updates didn't chase away my two favorite reviewers :)