You're on the phone; With your girlfriend; She's upset; She's going off about something that you said; She doesn't get your humor; Like I do

I put my ear to the wood of his door and listened carefully. Even with raptor hearing, I could just barely make out the words.

"Jen, come on! It didn't mean anything. Jeff and I were just joking around…I'll see you when I come home…Bye." He hung up. He sounded upset and hurt, but I'm the only who would've been able to hear it in his voice. Jen was his fifth girlfriend this month. The way she was always blowing off his sweet comments and his flower bouquets. It made me so mad. She thought he was like every other guy; he was senseless and needed to be reminded. That wasn't Fang. Fang was smart and quiet and strong and amazing. Jen didn't know him at all.

I'm in my room; It's a typical Tuesday night; I'm listening to the kind of music she doesn't like; She'll never know your story; Like I do

I listened for a second more, concentrating on his breathing. Then I snuck back to my room, which I shared with Ella, Nudge and Angel. This was supposed to be a vacation. My mom's treat for the flock. Instead it was turning out to be everybody having fun but me. Maybe it was because I was worrying too much about Fang and his girl problems.

The girls were on the laptop (our hotel offered free Wi-Fi) looking at pictures of Craig Horner. I grabbed my backpack and unzipped it roughly; this backpack took a lot of beatings. I picked out my iPod and flopped down on one of the beds. I pressed the play button and a Linkin Park song started playing. I didn't pay attention to the lyrics, just the music. It helped relax me a bit, loosen up. I was still thinking about Fang. I realized all the girls he dated were different from me. They were all really popular and showy; they liked to wear shirts that came down to low and skirts that road up.

But she wears short skirts, I wear t-shirts; She's cheer captain and I'm on the bleachers; Dreaming about the day when you wake up and find; That what you're looking for has been here the whole time

All his girls wore short skirts and low cut shirts. They all did sports or cheerleading. I looked at the mirror above the headboard. Maybe that's why he didn't see me. I wasn't pretty or perfectly shaped. And if you consider kicking-bad guy-butt a sport, call me.

If you could see that I'm the one who understands you; Been here all along; So why can't you see you belong with me; You belong with me

Where was this going to get me? I was lying here, ear buds turned way up. I'm the kind of person who always has plans. Now I was skint broke where plans were concerned and frightened of what I would be like without one: messy, tense and scared. I wanted to tell him what I felt. I wanted to tell him what I felt. I wanted to tell him that he needed open his eyes, I was right here!

I knew him like I knew myself. I had been his friend since we were old enough to talk through the bars of our cages. I was the one he would come to for comfort and vice versa. I felt like if I lost him now, I'd never save the world.

Walking the streets with you and your worn out jeans; I can't help thinking this is how it ought to be; Laughing on a park bench thinking to myself "Hey, isn't this easy?" And you've got a smile that could light up this whole town; I haven't seen it in awhile since she brought you down; You say you're fine, I know you better than that; Hey what you doing with a girl like that

The girls all looked toward the door suddenly and I ripped my ear buds out. If robots or Erasers were at my door, I wouldn't be caught plugged in. Angel sighed with relief, "It's just Fang." She went over and opened the door.

The way his broad shoulders drooped and his eyes looked duller told me he was upset. He glanced sidelong at me and asked, "Do you want to take a spin?" I nodded and grabbed my jacket. He held the door open for me and we both launched off the balcony railing. This was more like old times. We were flying together and we were silent. He looked over at me and I couldn't help but smile. He didn't return it. Now I knew something was wrong.

We landed on the deck of a community pool. He was tense; I hesitantly held up a hand to his arm. He didn't flinch away, which was good in and of itself.

"What's wrong?" I was whispering even though there was no one around. He shrugged. I rolled my eyes and sighed loudly. He looked shocked when I pulled off my tee-shirt, revealing a one piece swimsuit. I slipped off my shorts and jumped into the pool.

"Max, what are you doing?" Fang looked exasperated. I laughed heartily and told him I was swimming. He shook his head and I swam over to the edge where he was still standing. I pushed my hair away from my face and Fang finally returned my smile.

"So, now will you tell me what's wrong," I pressed. He sat down and tugged off his jacket. The breeze felt good, even in the water. His hair whipped around his face and he smiled sadly. He sighed and I pulled myself out onto the deck.

"Jen took what you guys said the other day really seriously and she didn't like it. She doesn't like your jokes. She's taking it all out on me. I don't get it." Fang shook his head and looked over at me. "You're a girl. Maybe you understand her behaviour."

She wears high heels, I wear sneakers; She's cheer captain and I'm on the bleachers; Dreaming about the day when you wake up and find; That what you're looking for has been here the whole time;

If you could see that I'm the one who understands you; Been here all along so why can't you see you belong with me; Standing by and waiting at your back door; All this time how could you not know Baby; You belong with me; You belong with me

"But I thought you said she was the one. She wears all the popular clothes and does all the popular things." I was confused. He liked her. He thought she was perfect. If only he felt the same way about me.

Oh, I remember you driving to my house; In the middle of the night; I'm the one who makes you laugh when you know you're about to cry; And I know your favorite songs; And you tell me about your dreams; Think I know where you belong; Think I know it's with me

Fang shook his head. "Well, I was about to spill all, but if she can't accept you guys then she won't have me either." Fang pushed his hair roughly. One stray piece fell over his face and he sighed exasperatedly. I laughed and then shivered. I slid back into the pool and beckoned to him with one finger.

"You need to forget all about her, just for a moment, and chill. Come swim. It'll help you loosen up."

He glared at me. "Are you serious?"

"I'm totally serious! Come on, it's nice in here." I made a puppy face (it normally didn't get me anywhere, but today it did) and he pulled his shirt off. Bare-chested, wearing only his jean shorts, he jumped in. I swam over to where he came up and splashed him. He looked sooo hot. His muscles rippled as he swam frog-style. Suddenly, he ducked underwater and swam beneath me. I turned to where he should have surfaced, but he wasn't there.

"Boo!" He crept up behind me and grabbed me around my waist. His hands were soft but strong as they held me against him. I struggled to get away, but his hold was steadfast.

"Let me go!" I squirmed and he tightened his grip just a bit.

"Never," he protested, laughing under his breath. Then he got serious. He loosened his grip just enough so that I could turn in his arms. Now, he and I were facing each other. "Never," he whispered. His voice was softer and his eyes were locked on mine. I was a little breathless and I had to look away to calm my speeding heart.

"Fang, please let me go." He slowly unwound his arms from my waist. I swam over to the wall and was about to lift myself out when his arms were on my sides. I was pinned against the wall and he was very close to me.

"What's wrong?" He asked worriedly.

"Please don't say 'never' like that." I crossed my arms over my chest and I couldn't look at him.

"Why not?"

"Because it hurts."

Can't you see that I'm the one who understands you; Been here all along so why can't you see? You belong with me

Have you ever thought just maybe you belong with me?

A puzzled expression crossed his flawless face. "Why does it hurt? Is there anything I can—" He broke off when I shook my head rapidly. "Come on, Max. I've always been the one to bandage up all your scrapes and bruises before. You can trust me. Please let me help you."

"I can't," I whispered.

"Why not?"

"Because you are the scrape, Fang. Only this time, it's more like a slice. A hole." I kept my eyes on my arms. My chest was starting to ache and I blinked hard to hold back the tears, but they came anyway. The tears were hot in my eyes. Fang placed two fingers under my chin and lifted my face to meet his gaze.

"I'm sorry Max. Whatever I've done, I never meant to hurt you. Never." He leaned closer to me, but I turned the other way. "What can I do to prove to you that I care about you?" He paused to gauge my reaction then added in a lower voice, "That I love you?"

Slowly I turned back to him, my mouth slightly ajar. My breathing was shallow and uneven; it came in short gasps. "You-you love me?" I stuttered the question breathlessly. To me, my voice sounded choked and astonished. I bit my lip and felt a tear fall down my cheek.

"Of course," he exclaimed in a whisper. He cupped my cheek in his palm. "I love you more than anyone else in the world." Admitting the truth felt good and he was experiencing it now.

"Oh Fang, I love you too. But then you were always with someone else. You belong with me. Not another girl."

Suddenly, I threw my arms around his neck. I pressed myself urgently against his muscular chest. Our mouths smashed together, urgent and ardent. He tilted his head to the side and deepened the kiss. I broke away to say one last thing.

"Fang, you belong with me."