The car ride back to Bellwood was a quiet one, even after Kevin slipped his ID mask back on, and attempted a weak joke. Neither of the Tennysons laughed, or even bothered to fake it.
It was only when they stopped to stretch their legs, and Ben went to find a bathroom, did Gwen finally speak. "Do you want to tell me what happened back there?"
Kevin shrugged, though his eyes were dark and unfocused; staring out the windshield of his car at the full moon ahead. "I busted the controls, and the vortex he was using to suck the sun's energy caused the ship to imploded. He was blown out into space; that's all there is to it."
Much to his annoyance, Gwen's shoulders relaxed.
"You didn't kill him yourself," She smiled tentatively. "He wasn't dead before the ship exploded."
Unable to control himself, his hands curled into fists. "If I'd been able to get him myself, before that happened, I would've! You all think I have this good in me; but maybe I don't! You're taking a big risk; being around me. One day I could snap, and you would be nothing but a memory."
She pressed herself against the passenger side door in shock, and apprehensively reached up to brush her fingers against his cheek, but he turned his head before she could. Expression falling, she started in a whispered tone, "You wouldn't do that, Kevin. Sure, right now, you're hurting, and you're angry... But if you were going to finish me off, you would of done it when we were kids."
"There you go, assuming the best in me, again. Face it, Gwen. I'm the only one in this team that's capable of killing. You two would do anything to avoid it- maybe that's not how I want to play it, anymore." He could see the emotions flickering on her face; anguish, confusion, helplessness, but that didn't make him pause for more than a second. "I lost my dad to some creep who would kill for fun. Why should I show mercy to people like that?"
There was no right answer to that; Gwen knew it.
So she was silent.
When the car pulled up to Ben's house, he mumbled to Gwen about how he wouldn't mind if she crashed there for the night. She nodded, and said she would be there in a minute, as he awkwardly stumbled out of the vehicle. Kevin didn't bother to look at her while she spoke.
"Do you remember when the Highbreeds attacked Earth, and I fell into my Anodite form?"
He nodded, gripping the steering wheel tightly in his hands, remembering how he could of lost her too.
"You brought me out of it." She took his face in her hands, forcing him to stare into her eyes. "And I'm going to bring you out of this."
He scoffed, bitterly. "This isn't something you can stop, Gw-" Her lips pressing to his cut off his statement.
Pulling away, she let her hands drift from his cheeks. "I'm not going to give up on you, or stop believing in the good I know you have inside."
Kevin turned to stare at the moon again, but this time, the corners of his lips were turned up, hinting at a smile. "Thanks," He replied to her in a hushed voice, starting up the car when she opened up her door.
Standing on the sidewalk outside her cousin's home, she leaned for one last brief second. "Your dad would be so proud of you, Kevin."
As soon as she shut the door, he slammed his foot on the gas and tried to ignore the way his eyes glassed over with tears.