*A/N: SORRY for the LONGGGGGGGGG WAIT! I can't believe that it's been two months since I last updated. ARGH.

Phantom Reviewer: Oops. Sorry. I should've written "childish" instead of "snobbish" because Constance actually GLARED at Kate and that's still a sign of snobbishness. Thanks for pointing that out :)

ANYWAY, Enjoy and don't forget to REVIEW! :D*

Chapter 8 – Outburst

The silence was such that you could hear a pin drop. The children's mind seemed to have gone from overdrive to a sluggish pace. If it wasn't for Rhonda clearing her throat, they might've stayed like that for the rest of the day.

"That's not … " Reynie said.

Even Kate was speechless. Back in the better days, she would've loved to kick the behinds of no-good people, but what happened to Milligan shook her up. She was still strong, but she was no longer eager for that kind of confrontation.

Constance took a deep breath. "You're not serious, are you?"

Mr. Benedict sighed sadly. "Unfortunately I am, Constance. Believe me, if there was any way – any way at all – for me to change this, I gladly would. "

"But why us? Why not Milligan's sentries? "

A sad expression wrinkled Mr. Benedict's face. "Before they searched Ledroptha's office, I promised them that that would be their final service. They could leave if they wanted to. Of course all of them wanted to, after what happened to their leader. Then yesterday, I asked Number Two to contact the sentries. They all hung up when they found out about the news.

Constance rolled her eyes. "Well that's cowardly of them." she scoffed.

"I agree Constance. And I don't blame them. But the fact is, we can't really force them, can we?"

"Mr – Mr. Benedict, how do you expect us to – to carry out that mi – mission?" Sticky asked, his voice wavering.

"Of course I have a plan in mind, dear Sticky." Mr. Benedict's eyes fell on Kate. She hadn't even spoken once. Before that "incident", she was usually the optimist. She was always the one who pointed out the bright side, always the first one to recover from shocking news such as this. Her cheerful remarks would always lighten up the other members of the Society. Without them, the others felt more anxious.

Constance, in attempt to break the sense of dread, said, "What's wrong with you Kate? Cat got your tongue?"

Kate's eyes flashed dangerously. Reynie gently placed a hand on her shoulder. "Don't." he whispered lowly so that only Kate could hear. "You know how she is when she gets anxious." Kate relaxed.

This simple gesture did not go unnoticed.

"On a happier note …" Mr. Benedict said cheerfully which caused everyone in the room to turn their heads in his direction.

He smiled faintly at Kate and Reynie. "I'm glad you two finally got over your grudges toward each other."

"Finally." Rhonda said in an exasperated tone.

Number Two smiled faintly. "I think … this ought to be celebrated. Excuse me. I must tell Moocho to make dinner extra-extra special." She said then walked out.

Most of the people left in the room relaxed a little. They had little time to celebrate on a time like this and so they grab every little opportunity to be happy.

Unnoticed by them was a sullen Kate, her hands curled into fists, a single tear running down her face, and a silent Reynie, worriedly watching his friend.

Their laughter ringed in her ears. Her blood boiled at her anger which is getting more intense each time a sound of happiness would burst in the dining hall. It was too much for her, the glow that radiated off her companions. Like everything was in its proper place. Like this is just another ordinary dinner. But it's not. And they're aware of that. She balled her hands into fists without much thought. All she wanted to do right now was to release all the bitterness she felt inside. She wanted to destroy everything in her path and scream herself hoarse. How can they be so cheerful?! How can they smile and laugh when we ourselves will be performing a suicide mission because my father got shot?!

The tension in her chest uncoiled and won over her control. She stood up, slamming her fist on the table. The vibration caused her empty plate to clatter.

All eyes were on her now.

"For crying out loud, Constance, no one cares about that stupid poem or whatever nonsense it is that came from your mouth! NO ONE CARES!"

They were all at shock that even Constance didn't yell back. But even if she did, she won't have the time to do so, because Kate stomped out of the hall before they could fully register what just happened.

The bubble of happiness surrounding them popped.

"I'll go after her." Reynie said quietly then followed after Kate.

Reynie found her in the balcony of her room. He began to hear her sobs as he got closer to her.

Kate felt something touch her shoulder and she tensed, preparing herself for the worse. But when she looked slightly to her right, she found out that the hand belongs to Reynie. She was relieved - but her body did not relax. She did not like anyone seeing her like this. She didn't face him. She didn't want Reynie - of all people to see the proof of her weakness.

"What are you doing here?" Kate said in the steadiest voice she could muster.

"I was worried..." Reynie replied.

Out of the corner of her eye, Kate could just make out the crease on his forehead. "There's nothing that can comfort me right now, so you might as well leave. Your efforts will be wasted."

"Just talk to me. I need to know what's wrong."

Kate didn't reply.


She finally sighed in dejection. As much as she hated to admit it, she needed him. She needed someone to steady her. She turned around to face him and the concerned look on his face was enough to unravel her.

A sob erupted from her chest and she held on to Reynie, gathering herself as she released everything she felt. Once she composed herself, she looked at Reynie.

"Kate... You can trust me, you know."

"I know. And I'm sorry."

Reynie urged her to continue.

"When I heard all of you laughing... I got mad... I just can't believe that you could be so happy when everything was so wrong. I felt like.. . You were insulting me, you know? You were all having fun while I was hurting. Hurting for Milligan. Hurting because he's the reason we're going to risk our lives."

"I'm sorry, I didn't know you felt - "

"No, I'm sorry. It wasn't fair of me. I have no right to make people feel the way I want them to feel."

Reynie smiled at Kate and said, "If you need anyone... don't forget that I'm always here. WE'RE always here." With that he squeezed her hand and exited her room.

*A/N: I think Kate was a bit OC in this chapter for being weak BUT remember, her father got shot before her very eyes. Happenings like that tend to change people don't they? TELL ME WHAT YOU THINK!

I won't keep you waiting this time! The 9th chapter is almost finished! :D*