Chapter One – All This Rain for Teen Angst

Grey clouds began to swirl outside the classroom window, or at least, that’s how it seemed, mostly because Zoey felt like the world was completely against her today.  The teacher was talking about something historical, probably related to dysentery, but Zoey was taking a moment to wallow in her own personal sorrow. Today, she had dared to ask freaking Tim to the dance coming up, and that was the beginning of the horror. She absentmindedly drew a circle on some loose-leaf in her binder until it ripped through the paper. She sighed, remembering. He had laughed right in her face, …
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Chapter Two

When Zoey came to, she felt a cold cloth being applied to her face and neck, and the chattering of Melanie right beside her. She realized she was sprawled out on the couch, and confusion made what had just happened seem like a dream, if only for a moment. She bolted up, and the dizziness hit her again like a hammer, causing her to sink back down. “Ugh… I need… an explanation.” She whispered, trying not to pass out again. “And you definitely deserve and will get one, just don’t sit up like that again or you could puke.” Melanie …
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Chapter Three

The ‘basement’ that Ferris had suggested, resembled more of a cave, but with some lighting installed. It was mostly clear and level, spanning about half the size of the actual house. There were some large boulders scattered around the room, most with moss and small plants growing from them. Oscar had decided to follow them downstairs, she guessed because they were all still a little wary of her. “You realize you’re the guys with the creepy basement, right? You don’t have to be jumpy around me.” she remarked snidely, fluttering her hand towards the cave around them. They did react …
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Chapter Four

The next school day flew by with something to look forward to, especially with Zabrina involved. At lunch time, however, Zabrina did have a few questions for her, that Zoey should have seen coming. Zabrina, ever the mom-friend, cornered her before they met with their other friends in the cafeteria. She gave her a bright smile, and Zoey returned it innocently enough, knowing she couldn’t get out of this conversation. “You and this Doug guy seem to be getting along, I mean, since you were just doing a project together and now you’re hanging out outside of that?” Zabrina said, …
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Chapter Five

On the night of the dance, Zoey and Ferris got a ride with Zabrina and Ted to the school. Ferris had actually dressed up slightly for the occasion in dark wash jeans and a button up shirt which may or may not have belonged to Doug. The girls did most of the chatting on the way over, but Zoey didn’t really know Ted, so she had no idea of what to talk to him about other than school. Zabrina, however, seemed quite entertained by everything he had to say, so Zoey was really glad for her friend that Ted had …
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Chapter Six

The first thing Zoey was aware of when she woke up was the fact that she was sitting up and hunched over. Stiffly trying to stretch out her limbs, she found resistance, and opened her eyes, remembering she had passed out earlier, suddenly on edge. She had been moved, she could tell, but she didn’t recognize the room she was in. She suspected that the people from the company was responsible, that, and usually her dentist didn’t knock her out and kidnap her for her appointments, even if she didn’t want to go see him. Other than being tied up, …
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Chapter Seven

There was a pause of course, as there is when anyone who has given up hope hears what they never thought they would. “What?” Ferris asked softly, as if he hadn’t heard right before. “I saw her, she was on a floor below me, and it was from far away, but I saw her, she looked at me. I didn’t say anything because I wasn’t sure if she was real, because of the gas, but I am sure now. I am absolutely certain,” Zoey told him, voice unwavering. She held the cell phone in her hand and pointed to it, …
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CHAPTER EIGHT

When she got into Doug’s truck on Monday, she was surprised to see Ferris was not with him, and inquired to where he was. “Oh, he wanted to be picked up second for some reason, saying he had to finish a project really quick but…” Doug trailed off, as if he didn’t believe Ferris but couldn’t quite call him out on it either. She shrugged, and sat in the passenger seat until they arrived at Ferris’ house, where he jumped in almost immediately, forcing her to slide over into the middle seat and sit right next to Doug. That was …
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Chapter Nine

Zoey had just finished watching one movie out of a stack of movies at Rebecca’s place with Zabrina. Rebecca was joining them at school on Friday, just to start out again, and had been studying with Lynda a bit as well. They were socializing with her in order to make her feel a bit less jumpy, and Ferris was skulking about, reading a book in the corner and eating chips while they watched a marathon of cheesy films.             Zoey had to say that when Rebecca really smiled at you, you melted. You felt like she was someone you could …
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CHAPTER TEN

“Do you think he knows we’re both here?” Doug asked Ferris, who sniffed, but then responded, “Probably, I’m not sure how he knew we were here at all, so it’s best to assume he knows everything and be careful.” Rebecca opened her eyes again. She sighed, and then unfolded her legs. “That sounds like… Karver Zinc, he’s with JARGON and we spoke a few times. I think he was monitoring my testing, because he would sometimes give me updates on them, despite me not wanting to have any of the testing done or care about the results really. I think…” …
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Chapter Eleven

Zoey hadn’t been to Skyler’s place before, but she saw that it was much larger than anyone else’s house that she’d seen previously, although she had to admit she hadn’t visited all of their places yet. It had nice little gardens around the property, including a small one beside the steps. When she paused to look at it, she saw little painted rocks among the flowers with faded, cracking paint. It looked as if they had been placed there quite a few years ago, and she wondered for a moment if they belonged to Doug and his friends. After all, …
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Chapter Twelve

Zoey packed her book bag with clothes and the things she would need for the trip, and even though she had practiced a few times flying, she was less than excited. Most of the times she had to fly had been due to being saved, but this was promising to be a longer trip than any before. She headed over to Skyler’s with Doug, as they had all decided to leave from there. She was surprised to see everyone standing outside discussing the trip, but not everyone was there yet, so she didn’t worry that they were late. Before she …
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Chapter 13

“Sullivan!” Oscar cried out, scrambling clumsily to his hands and knees and crawling closer, tears starting to form in his eyes. When he did so, his arm gave out under him and his chin would have hit the ground, if not for Lynda barely managing to catch his torso as gently as she could. “You’re okay, it’s okay” Sullivan told him quietly, reaching out and placing a hand on his uninjured shoulder. Sullivan still sounded groggy but his voice cracked more with emotion than anything else. “I’m so sorry… to all of you.” Oscar tried again, looking around with wide, …
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Chapter Fourteen

They arrived at the water park and it was like a scene from a movie. For starters, the day had proved to be blisteringly hot, and once Zoey quietly confirmed that it wasn’t the fault of Atlas, and that he couldn’t even do that, she thought that she had never seen a place so beautiful. Doug agreed, and looked a little worn out from the sun too. Ferris jokingly told him not to wilt, and pushed him towards the entrance of the park. She heard Doug try not to laugh, and then hiss back at Ferris that he hoped he …
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Chapter Fifteen

When Dominic asked if Blythe was feeling alright that day, Zoey was surprised, and also confused. They had passed in the hallway earlier, and she appeared fine. She told him this, and he gave her a confused look. “That’s strange,” he remarked. “She wasn’t in the class I have with her. Did she have an appointment or something and have to leave school early?” Zoey wasn’t sure if she did, and told him so, but then added, “If one of her brothers or sisters had one, I can see her leaving school too, to take them to one.” Blythe was …
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Chapter Sixteen

They had gone back to get their cars, but Atlas had left his car to them as Ben, Blythe and he went to his house as soon as they could. Doug headed straight there as well, but he had to drive his truck. Luckily, the roads were relatively clear of traffic, so they were able to get there in good time. He was nervously glancing around the entire time he drove, fingers tapping on the wheel despite this, and when they pulled up to the house, he didn’t even wait for Zoey to open the door, he was already out …
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Chapter Seventeen

Brie kept her promise that she and Aisha would refuse to sit with them at lunch, and in fact, were absent from the cafeteria completely. Dominic stayed true, however, and was waiting at their regular table when they arrived. Zabrina came down shortly after, and although she wanted to discuss what Brie had said earlier, Zoey tried her best to shift the topic of conversation back to Blythe, and then tried desperately to shift it to something that seemed ‘normal’.             “Have you read any good books lately? Maybe Doug could pass one along to Blythe to read while she …
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Chapter Eighteen

The clean up after they drove off was a bit difficult, but Doug managed to fix what he could before nearly passing out. “Those collars… They aren’t developed by JARGON, but they do use them. It halts the magical properties in the body, and zap the prey of energy. Those ones are specific to dragons, but I bet they use others as well.” Skyler explained, helping Doug stand, in human form now. “They don’t work on me because JARGON played with my DNA too much. It doesn’t know what to do.” Oscar joked, but there was a flash of pain …
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Chapter Nineteen

“And so, I had a lot of trouble controlling my poisoning powers when I was little. I regularly poisoned Skyler because he was trying to keep me from poisoning everyone else and teach me how to… not do that.” Vikki finished, starting to slow down her story as Zoey not so subtly crawled backwards from sitting beside her to sitting on Doug’s lap. Perrin let out a roar of laughter, and Doug flushed such a deep red that he had to cover his face against Zoey’s back. “She’s fine with it now, just reluctant to use her powers.” Spoke Doug, …
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