Chapter Six: Back to Boring

"I'm Tally Youngblood. Make me Pretty?" Brynn scoffed. "What kind of bullshit is that?"

Sage chuckled and ran a hand through Brynn's hair.

Dr. Cable also showed amusement. "I'm not complaining. She'll finally be a bubblehead and stop causing trouble."

"Are you sure? I mean, that's why we made Sage a Special."

"That's why I made him a Special," the doctor corrected. "But Tally was only in The Smoke for a few days. Her memories were easy to block. Sage had been there for years, never mind his strange age, obstructing his memories would have been extremely difficult."

Brynn nodded and looked up at Sage from her resting spot on his shoulder. Over the last few days, they had gotten very close. Her pings with Zane had only shown her that that was the past. Besides, Sage offered her something she had never known with Zane. She didn't feel like she had to try. They were equals.

Sage was experiencing a decidedly uneventful Special life. He and Brynn went out on a few runs to catch Uglies trying to leave the city. It seemed that the Smokies, wherever they were hiding, were still trying to recruit the youth of the city. Brynn wondered where they thought they would put them, but it did tell her that they couldn't be far.

She recalled how quickly they had made it to the Old Smoke. Maybe they weren't that close, but they were still catchable. Very rarely, they caught a glimpse of a Smokey, but they were never able to capture one. It was beginning to put Brynn in a constantly irritated mood. The only thing that made her feel better was having Sage around.

So far, nothing romantic had happened between Sage and Brynn. When he thought about it, he didn't really care if there was a romance about them. He did want her, but he felt like a Random whenever he considered wooing her or taking her out on a date. That didn't seem very Special. It seemed ordinary.

He often touched her, stroking her hair or putting his fingers on her arm when he spoke with her. She never denied him and he took that as a sign that she was willing to be with him whenever he made his move.

Still, he was newly Special and that was enough to make him second guess himself. He didn't approach her on the subject and left their relationship the way it was—partners. Yes, they hung out. Yes, they laughed together. Yes, the sparred together. But so did all the other partnered Specials. Sage did notice that a lot of them seemed to be involved with each other. But he also noticed a lot of that involvement was across the headquarters. It wasn't just partners who were seeing each other. This did nothing to settle his stomach about how to move in on Brynn.

Tally hadn't been Pretty very long when Brynn and Sage, along with quite a few other Specials, were sent out to a party she attending. A Smokey was at the party, dressed as a Special, and that was definitely a sign of trouble.

To Brynn's utter fury, the Smokey got away and they had no answers for why he had been there. But she knew it had something to do with Tally Youngblood, even though that stupid girl was bubbleheaded. It always had something to do with Tally Yoiungblood.