Here is my first shot at a Jackson Rathbone fanfic. This story is rated M for language, violence, and scenes of mild adult situations.

Disclaimer: I do not own Jackson or the 100 Monkeys. And all of Ben Johnson's family history is made up (to my knowledge).

Full summary: After a tragic family incident, Amy Cox is sent to live with her Aunt and Uncle and their only son in Bartelso, Illinois; she is only eight years old. Twelve years later and Amy is now a senior at the University of California—Berkeley majoring in biochemistry. After not speaking to each other for about a year, Amy is contacted by her cousin and invited to a concert in Hollywood. Amy agrees, somewhat reluctantly, and drags her best friend along with her. New friendships are formed and the flames of romance ignite between Amy and one of her cousin's band mates. But things get a little complicated when the past comes back to haunt Amy.

Chemistry

Prologue

The fading grey '94 Chevrolet Impala round its way along the curving country roads. It was dark outside and the moon was hidden behind a thick cover of clouds. A boy sat next to me in the backseat; his head lay propped up against the window. His eyes were closed and his lips were slightly parted. A thin line of drool hung from his mouth and gathered in a pool on his shirt sleeve. A man and a woman sat quietly upfront. The woman was reading a book; a small lamp was pinned to the book cover, providing just enough light for her to see. The man drove the car steadily, but I could feel his eyes flicker to me every so often. I made the mistake of looking back at him once, and as our gaze met though the rear view mirror I could see wrinkles form under his dull blue eyes; he was smiling at me. Whether it was a smile of comfort or a smile of pity I couldn't tell. Without smiling back, I returned to staring out the window like I'd been doing all night.

About a half hour later the car finally pulled off the main highway and up a narrow drive. The car slowly rolled to a stop and the engine died. We had arrived. The woman closed her book and let out a contented sigh. She turned in her seat to look at me.

"Are you ready to see your new home dearie?" She asked.

I didn't respond. How was I supposed to respond?

"Wake up Benjamin; we're home." The woman shoved the right knee of the boy slightly and he woke with a start. He wiped the drool off his mouth with the back of his hand and climbed out of the car. I followed suit.

As I walked up the front porch steps alongside the boy, the sky lit up and a roll of thunder echoed through space. We had just entered the house when the rain began to fall.

The woman sighed again and said, "Now I know you're probably excited to tour the house," I wasn't, "but I'm afraid that will have to wait until tomorrow. It's late and you should get to bed."

I nodded plainly; there was no use in arguing.

"Your bedroom will be on the second floor beside Benjamin's." The woman began to make her way up the stairs; the man and the boy had already gone up. "Since it was such short notice, you coming to live here and all, your bedroom isn't quite ready yet so you'll have to share with Benjamin for the time being."

I nodded again though she couldn't see me.

We walked down the hallway until we came to the last bedroom on the left; the door was open. The boy sat on his bed already dressed in his pajamas. The bedspread was adorned with The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and posters of them hung on the walls of the room. Folded up in one of the corners, next to my luggage, was a pink and purple Barbie bedspread with matching pillows for me.

"You can get dressed in the bathroom here," The woman pointed to the door that was across the hall from the bedroom.

Again I nodded, and went to the corner where my luggage was and unpacked a pair of pajamas.

"Have you brushed your teeth Benjamin?" The woman asked.

"Yes momma." The boy replied.

"Good. Now dearie," the woman turned back to me. "We weren't sure of the status of your toothbrush so we just bought you a new one. It's the pink one on the counter in there. It's still in the packaging. Is there anything that you need?

I shook my head gently. "No ma'am." I said.

The woman smiled slightly. "Alright then. Good night. I'll see you two in the morning." She smiled a little bigger before turning to walk to the other end of the hallway.

I went to the bathroom where I changed and brushed my teeth as quickly as possible. When I returned to the bedroom the boy was still just sitting on the bed, like he was waiting for me to return. I could feel his eyes following me as I went to my corner. I was reaching for my bedspread when a clap of thunder caused me to jump. The boy giggled lightly and I turned to him with moist eyes.

"Are you scared?" he asked me.

I nodded as I tried to hold back the tears.

"Come here." He said.

I stood frozen in my corner.

"It's okay. Bring your blanket and your pillows and come here." At this he jumped off the bed and pulled his own blanket and pillows off and laid them on the floor. "You can sleep on the bed, and I'll sleep on the floor."

I slowly made my way over to the bed with my pillow blanket. "Thank you." I whispered as I crawled onto the bed.

"No problem." The boy said as he crawled into his own makeshift bed. "That's what cousins are for right?"

I stayed silent and pulled the covers up to my chest. Another clap of thunder rattled the window and I pulled the blanket higher.

"You don't have to be afraid anymore Amy. They can't hurt you now."

I had heard those words several times over the past month, but for some reason as I looked into the boy's soft brown eyes on that stormy night I finally believed them.