"Glass Half Empty"
"I'll catch ya later Max!" Zack said to his girlfriend as they parted ways amongst the sea of students moving through the hallway to their next class. It was just after first period at Cheever's High School when seventeen year old Zachary Martin reached his locker and exchanged a few textbooks between it and his backpack. If only Cody could see him now, actually reading school books and studying! A grin split across his face as he conjured up the image of his twin brother staring at him in utter disbelief.
Zack slammed his locker shut, cinched his backpack tighter around his right shoulder and headed off to his absolute most favorite class of the day; Algebra. He searched the passing crowds for a familiar face as he navigated through the mass of bodies trying to make it on time and avoid another detention. Just as he arrived outside of the classroom with a minute to spare Zack froze on the spot and inhaled sharply in surprise as he caught sight of the last thing he'd ever expected to see.
On the other side of the hallway staring back at him and smiling warmly was none other than Cody Martin. His twin was wearing an expensive looking black leather jacket over a white shirt and a pair of loose fitting dark blue denim jeans. Cody looked healthy, in fact he looked fit. Zack rubbed his eyes to make sure that he wasn't just seeing things and felt his heart fall when he returned his gaze to the spot he'd seen his brother standing in and there was no one around. For a few brief seconds Cody had been standing less than fifteen feet away, or had he? Zack looked around the hallway which was thinning out and didn't see Cody anywhere. Had he just been seeing things again?
Two Years Ago
Fifteen year old Zack Martin rolled groggily out of bed and walked like a zombie out of the bedroom he shared with his twin and into the bathroom in the early hours of the morning, his blurry eyes barely open, to relieve his full bladder. When he was finished, Zack washed his hands and wandered back into the living room where his mother was sleeping on the pull out couch and headed for the kitchen. A little snack couldn't hurt could it? It was still about six hours before he was usually up and about anyway, he needed something to hold him over till then.
His search of the fridge was nearly fruitless and he ended up settling on taking a cup of strawberry yogurt with him back to his room, ignoring, but not missing the irony of the whole notion of a fruitless search turning up only strawberry goodness. He was surprised to see a fully dressed Cody walking out of their bedroom with a backpack slung over his shoulder. It was four in the morning, where was he off too?
"Cody? Where are you going? It's too early for you to be going to school, especially on a Saturday," Zack whispered matter of factly, apparently surprising his twin seeing Cody jump in surprise at the sound of his voice.
"Just going out for a walk, I can't sleep," Cody explained jamming his hands into his pockets and leaning against the front door.
"At four in the morning?"
"Yeah well, thought I'd go around the area until sunrise and tire myself out." Cody shrugged nonchalantly. Zack could understand that as he hated not being able to sleep in when he had plenty of time to do so.
"What's with the backpack?"
"What backpack?" Cody wondered and Zack blinked in surprise. Sure enough his twin stood there in an outfit suitable for wandering around town without anything else, not even a backpack. It was too early, Zack decided, he was seeing things.
"Okay, well see you later," Cody replied. He hesitated for a moment and then came forward to embrace Zack in gentle hug.
"Whoa man, what's that for?" Zack asked in his most macho voice, playfully struggling against the affection. It wasn't long before Cody let go.
"Nothin," the younger twin answered as he turned and left the suite. Zack shook his head briefly at how odd Cody was acting before shrugging it off and going back into his room to lay down. It was the last time Zack saw his baby brother.
Cody Martin dropped off the face of the planet that very same day…
"Yo Zack?" There was a long pause that followed.
"ZACK? You ok man?" Someone had him by the shoulders and was gently shaking him. The action snapped Zack out of his trip down memory lane and he looked up into his best friend's freckled face.
"Yeah, I'm just…" Just what, Zack wondered… Seeing things that aren't there? He couldn't tell Bob, he couldn't tell anyone. They would just say that he was suffering from a relapse of depression caused by his brother's disappearance, put him on some meds and make him see the school's shrink again.
"Gonna be late man," Bob gestured to their class, thankfully ignoring Zack's odd behavior. Most of Zack's friends accepted his weird behavior from time to time, though they kept a close eye on him just in case he decided to do something decidedly foolish.
"Let's go. I'm down for avoiding detention," Zack finally formed a coherent sentence as he led the way with Bob right behind him, thinking about anything but Algebra class.
Two years ago Cody had left the suite to go out 'walking' at four in the morning and he had never been seen or heard from again. Carey and Kurt Martin had searched high and low with Zack everywhere Cody might have gone and checked with all of his friends to see if they'd seen him, but nothing came of the searching. The police got involved, but their limited help eventually turned up nothing.
Cody Martin was officially declared a missing person. He was just another statistic as far as most people involved in the search were concerned, but to his family Cody's disappearance was a tragedy of epic proportions. The younger twin left behind good friends, a depressed brother and devastated parents.
A/N: This idea will NOT get out of my head and is interfering with the writing of my novel, so I adapted it to the Suite Life and here it is! I'm intending to make the chapters shorter than I usually make them and use a different writing style.
Hope you like the beginning! There's more to come as we delve into the mystery surrounding Cody's disappearance.
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