Love and revenge. How odd I should feel both at the same time. It is something that I have never experienced. I should feel only love or only the need for revenge, but yet they both come to me in an eerily way. No matter soon I will get out of this hellhole and vengeance will be mine. That bitch will pay for having me put in here, but she will have to pay justÖlikeÖIÖdid, hours of mindless silence followed by hours of mindless screams that start early in the day and go on until the late night. She will learn that no one ever takes anything that I want away from me. And definitely no one takes anything that I love away. Do not worry my love, I will get out and once again we will be happy together.
She sits down on the floor of her room and starts to carefully formulate a plan.
Jack was a new guard. He was just as big and muscular as the other guards, but yet he was completely different. He cared entirely too much about the patients. He got to know them and even like some of them, which is against the rules. The one he liked the most was Samantha. When he first met her, he was attracted to her long black hair, that charming smile, the way she acted. There was something that mystified him about her, she didnít like to talk about herself, but instead, she talked about him. She wanted to know all about his life, his interests, everything. He loved that about her. She was beautiful, mysterious, and insanely sexy. Obviously, someone had made a mistake when they put her into this loony bin. She is definitely not crazy. I should have a talk with one of the supervisors in this place and let them know that sheís a down-to-earth type of girl. Maybe theyíll then realize it and let her out, then we could go out on a real date.
He smiles as he thinks this last thought. A sharp scream causes him to be quickly brought back to reality and makes him hurry down the hall. He had a "date" with Samantha and wanted to get there quickly since he couldnít stand being without her. As he approaches the door, he pulls out his wallet.
"So guys how much will it be this time?" he asks the two muscular men guarding her door.
The two men converse amongst themselves and then turn back to him.
"Since you covered our asses before and we owe you, make it $1,000," the tallest says.
"Thanks for going easy on me guys," Jack says sarcastically. "Iíll have to remember to go this easy on you whenever you need a favor."
He hands the two the money and waits until they leave before unlocking the door. Samantha was sitting on the floor facing the opposite wall.
"Jack, you made it," Samantha says. "I thought you would have a problem trying to get in."
She gets up and faces him, her brilliant eyes flashing.
"I told you I would make it, and here I am," Jack says, walking closer.
Samantha turns around.
"Would you help me with this?" Samantha asks, moving a covered shoulder.
Jack unties the sleeves and unzips the back of the jacket.
"God I hate those sleeves," Samantha says. "They feel like their pulling my arms out of my sockets."
Samantha slowly turns around and takes the jacket off her right arm.
"There now. You look more beautiful," Jack mutters, rubbing his face in her orange-scented hair.
Samantha reaches up with her right hand and rubs his strong jaw. He reaches his left hand up and starts to run his fingers through her hair.
"If you want to kiss me, go right ahead and kiss me," Samantha tells him.
He looks down deep into her dark eyes. Slowly he leans towards her. His eyes were still locked on hers as he finally touched his lips to hers. Their kiss, like a flower, bloomed from an innocent peck into a passionate embrace. As he pulled her body closer to him, she opened her eyes a little. Seeing that he was completely into the kiss and that his eyes were still closed, she slowly raised her left arm, which still was in the straitjacket. She drapes her right arm around his neck and grabs the other side of the jacket. She pulls until the material is taunt, then quickly double wraps the jacket around his throat. He puts up quite a struggle, but since she has had time to work out, she easily overpowers him. As she pulls the jacket tighter he sinks to the ground, slowly turning a light blue. She pulls until she is sure that he is unconscious.
"Well, that went according to plan. Now I need to make sure that sleeping beauty isnít doubted when he says why we are leaving. Ha! Life is grand and soon it will be grander when I join up with my love."
"A.J.! Come on! Weíre all waiting so hurry up!" Brian yells up the stairs.
"Iíll be down in a minute!" A.J. shouts back.
The others look at each other sadly and shake their heads. Nickís, Howieís, Kevinís, and Brianís girlfriends all get up and go into the kitchen.
"Howie, why donít you go get him?" Amanda asks, irritated. "He is your best friend."
"Amanda, why donít you go get him?" Howie asks, just as irritated. "He is your boyfriend."
Glares pass between the two. Brian looks from one to the other.
"Thank God we donít have to deal with this all the time!" Nick whispers to Kevin.
"Yeah, but notice this started after Amanda went to visit some of her family in Nevada and took A.J., ever since then sheís been changed and not for the best either," Kevin whispers back.
"Yeah, Iíd say that sheís definitely changed and Howie gets the worst of it. I feel sorry for him. She picked him out of all of us to be mean to," Nick says. "Itís like she has constant P.M.S."
They both look up and see that the two are still staring each other down.
"Thatís enough of that you two! This is supposed to be a happy day for all of us and yet all you two do is argue!" Brian fusses. "I want you to make up. Amanda, apologize for being evil to Howie for no reason. Howie, apologize to Amanda for being impatient and short-tempered."
"You got the short part right," Amanda mutters under her breath.
"Evil is too nice a word, more along the lines of bitchy," Howie grumbles.
"Did you two say something?" Brian asks irritated.
They both look up at Brian, who by now is clearly upset with their behavior. Sheepishly they look down at their hands, before starting the apologies.
"I said that Iím sorry for being evil to Howie since he has done nothing wrong," Amanda said sadly. "I promise that I will try to do better."
"Iím sorry for not being very understanding to Amanda and for being short-tempered," Howie says. "I promise that I will at least try to understand where sheís coming from. (whispered) Even if I have to actually go to the trailer park she was living in."
Nick and Kevin are the only ones who hear it and burst out laughing. Brian gives them both a quick glare and they shut up. Tensions seem to mount more as the other girlfriends enter the room.
"So, did you miss me?" A.J. asks.
"Ohmigod A.J., what is up with your hair?" Amanda asks laughingly.
"Well I got sick of red and wanted to go for that green giant look," A.J. says, coming down the stairs.
"I donít know about the giant part, but you definitely have the green part down packed," Howie says.
A.J. smiles as he finishes descending the stairs. Heís a sight, green hair and a nice tuxedo. He goes over and kisses Amanda on the lips. As Amanda starts to get into it, he pulls away.
"So is everybody ready to go?" A.J. asks.
"Weíve been ready for hours A.J.," Nick answers, as he puts his coat on and helps his girlfriend into hers.
Brian turns the lights out and since it is night, the only light they have is from the full moon which happens to be blood red. They all put their coats on and are starting to leave when Amanda grabs A.J.ís coat sleeve.
"A.J., I have this feeling that something is going to happen," she whispers fiercely into his ear. "Everything is going to get a whole lot worse, before we can have any hopes of it getting better."
"What do you mean by that?" he whispers back.
"Itís just a feeling that I suddenly had but now that Iím thinking, it probably meant nothing," she whispers. "Itís probably just the moon or something thatís making me crazy."
A.J. takes her hand and steps out into the night. He shuts and locks the door behind them.
"Donít worry, Iíll protect you from the moon," he tells her, before they hurry to catch up with the others.
Samantha leaned over Jackís limp body. She had put the straitjacket back on, but hadnít zipped it.
"Sleeping Beauty!" she whispers intensely, slapping his face with a covered hand. "Come on Sleeping Beauty wake up!"
Jack starts to move around a little so she gives him a good hard smack across the cheek. His eyes slowly open.
"Welcome back to the land of the living," Samantha says cheerily. "Sorry to say this but, you look like shit."
Jack slowly reaches for his gun.
"Are you looking for this?" Samantha asks, pointing the gun at his head.
"What do you think youíre doing? That thing is loaded, you probably donít even know how to handle a gun," Jack says, sitting up sluggishly.
"A Ruger .38 revolver loaded with Silvertips, not a usual gun or ammunition for a cop to carry," she says smiling.
"How did you-?" he began.
"How did I know? Well my father was an expert gunman, he was in the Army for part of his life, a terrorist for another part, and a government assassin for the rest. He wanted a boy, but got a girl. So instead of whining about it, he taught me everything that he knew about the business," she tells him. "I even have figured out a way to get out of this place, but of course youíre needed."
"What if I decide not to help you?" he inquires angrily. "I mean, how do you figure that Iíll help you escape?"
"Well you donít have much of a choice in the matter. You are expected to bring me out of here in a few minutes to see Doctor Martin. Supposedly he has to run some tests on me and you have to escort me to his office."
"Wow, youíve thought of everything, but how are you going to explain not being completely fastened into your straitjacket?" he asks mockingly.
"Just get up pretty boy, Iíll take care the details," Samantha tells him.
She stands up and pulls him to his feet easily.
"Now youíve got to walk behind me and pretend that you are making sure Iím not trying to escape. When we reach the checking booth, all you have to do is show my ID badge to get us past. Then we need to go to your car. From there Iíll drive to the guard station that allows us to leave. I have already arranged for your car to be allowed to pass without being stopped. Then weíre home free," Samantha explains.
"I do what?" he asks smugly.
Samantha points the gun at his head.
"You walk behind me," she commands.
Immediately Jack stands behind Samantha. She presses the gun into his side. Then she walks to the door and opens it.
"Now whatever you do, act natural," she hisses as they start to make their walk down the hall.
Iím almost out of here! I canít believe this and I owe it all to Daddy. I really never thought that the skills that he had passed down to me would ever come in handy. Dear old dad, I really miss you and wherever you are and hope that you are proud of all that I have done and will do.
"May I please see the ID card?" a rough voice inquires.
Samantha looks up a little and sees Jack looking a little lost. She digs the gun deeper into his side. The look quickly disappears and he pulls the card out of his coat pocket. The guard quickly scans the upheld card before buzzing the door open.
"Now you be careful with this one," the guard yells after them as they leave. "Sheís tricky."
"Thank you for the warning," Jack yells back.
Samantha is "led" down the hall to an elevator. As soon as Jack reaches forward and presses the down button the doors open. They both stepped onto the elevator.
"You be careful with this one, sheís tricky," Samantha mimics the guard.
"So, what are we going to do now?" Jack asks.
"Well from here we will go to your car," Samantha tells him.
"Do you even know what type of car I have?" Jack asks.
"A Ford Explorer Limited thatís so new that the midnight black color of the car is still brightly shining as if you had just gotten it out of the showcase room," Samantha tells him. "Is that description accurate enough for you or do you need more convincing?"
"How did you know?" Jack asks as the door starts to open.
Samantha looks down and once again is being "led" by Jack. He leads her outside and into the dark parking lot that was only lighted by the blood red moon.
A blood red full moon. How fitting. A blood red moon on the night that marks a major change in my life. The only other time I had seen a blood red moon was when I had my first run in with my love and that bitch. That was a major change, this is a major change.
"Ladies first," Jack says opening the door on the driverís side.
Samantha switches the gun from her left hand to her right hand as she takes the jacket off the right side. She quickly switches the gun back to her left hand to finish removing the jacket. She throws the jacket into the car.
"I donít think so. Give me the keys," Samantha says, pointing the gun at his head.
Jack slowly hands her the keys.
"Now get into the car," Samantha commands.
Jack gets into the car and slides into the passenger seat. Samantha climbs in after him and slams the door shut.
"Weíre just about home free. All weíll have to do is get past the guard station which is taken care of," Samantha says happily.
Samantha starts the car and hastily pulls out of the parking space.
"Wow Howie, I love your auntís house. It was nice of her to allow us to stay here," Melissa (Howieís girlfriend) says.
Melissa holds Howieís hand as Nick pulls the black í00 Ford Explorer out of the garage.
"Well, she didnít need it and we were here in town, so she decided to let us use it," Howie explains. "Plus, I think itís cool how the house was built.
"Itís so great being here. Georgia is such a nice place," Brian says. "I really like how your aunt designed it so that you have to walk through the woods on the lighted path to get to the garage."
Ashley pulls the hunter green í00 Ford Explorer out the other side of the garage.
"Okay, weíre splitting up, so everyone needs to say their good-byes until we meet at the restaurant," Ashley calls, leaning out the window.
"Well, I personally think you should take all the girls, since itís only (Nick takes a quick look at his Tommy watch) 7:00 and we can all meet back up at 9:oo," Nick suggests. "That way you can make sure youíre ready."
"Well Nicky, youíve got a good idea," Ashley says smiling.
Brian walks over the green SUVís window.
"Iím going to miss you, but of course you know that," Brian whispers stroking Ashleyís face.
"Of course," Ashley whispers back. "If itís any consolation, Iím going to miss you too."
Brian leans forward to kiss Ashley, but she turns his face and kisses him on the cheek quickly.
"Ashley-" Brian begins.
"I canít. Not right now Brian, not like this," Ashley says. "Iím sorry, but right now I canít kiss you like that. Iím Nickís girlfriend, you have a girlfriend. Later on tonight-your room. Until then, goodbye Brian. (whispered) Oh and Brian I have this bad feeling that something might happen when weíre out so be careful."
"I promise to be very careful," Brian promises.
"Nicky darling, Iíll miss you so very much," Ashley calls to him as Brian starts to walk away.
Ashley waves from the SUV as the other girls start to get in.
"Bye Ashley," Nick shouts from the other SUV.
Ashley smiles and blows a kiss to Brian when sheís sure no oneís looking as Nick begins to pull out.
"So what exactly do you expect him to do? Just run and jump into your arms happily?" Jack asks. "HaHaHa! Thatís a good one!"
Samantha looks over at him and smiles brightly.
"At first I didnít want to do this, but I think Iíll enjoy it," Samantha says laughing.
"Didnít want to do what?" Jack asks interested. "Are you going to tell me your plan?" "Yes how did you guess?" Samantha feigns shock. "Your just too bright for me darling."
"Well what is it?" Jack asks. "And why are we running these back roads?"
Samantha looks out her window at the passing fields that were bathed in the eerie red light of the moon. She leans a little bit out of her window and takes a deep breath.
"Because this is the way to where they are," Samantha says quietly.
"How do you know?" Jack asks.
"Because me and my darling, we have a bond that cannot be brokenÖever. No one can come between us."
"So you can read his mind?"
"No. We are cosmically linked. Our souls are bound to one another. Thatís something we have that no one else seems to have or even care about. No one except my dad."
"What happened to your dad?"
"I killed him."
"You killed you own father?" Jack asked, fear began to creep into his voice.
"Of course. We had a shoot out, at that time he had gone back to working the "bad" side, though there is no good or bad side in the world in which I work, and he just happened to be there when I was there. I was assigned to take him out. If I hadnít killed him when I did, Iíd be the one buried in a shallow grave with no head stone," Samantha explains.
"How old are you?" Jack asks.
"Iím 22. I joined the U.S. Forces when I was 15. Left at 20. Iím a legend in the Secret Services and in everyoneís mind who actually knew me. Ask about me one day. My code name was Silver Star. Code word is friendship."
"Why are you telling all of this to me?" Jack asks in wonder. "Arenít you supposed to keep that to yourself, you know like carry it to your grave?"
"Yes, but telling it to you is very different. Now let me tell you the plan."
Samantha adjusts herself in the driverís seat.
"Weíre just a mile away from where we are going. I am going to have some surgery done and you are going to be dropped off before then. From there I will go to the house and wait for my love to get home. I get the guy, you get out the car, weíre both happy."
"What makes you so sure that I wonít alert the authorities?" Jack asks. "Better yet, what makes you think that the people havenít heard of your escape already? They could be looking for us right at this very moment."
"No they wonít know for a week. Do you think that the government is going to be happy to announce that one person escaped the nuthouse? No, itíll be a week before they finally let anyone know that something is up and by that time, itíll be too late."
"You still havenít answered my question about the authorities. What are you going to do to stop me?"
Samantha slowly turns off the road and onto a dirt road. She drives down the road that is considerably darker than the asphalt since the trees block out the light.
"Where are we going?" Jack asks shakily.
Samantha looks over and sees him shaking a little and observes that he is paler than he was when they first started this trip. She sighs, presses her lips together in a tight line and drives faster, looking for the perfect area to pull over. After moments of silent searching, she finally sees what she's looking for. She pulls over, turns off the car and looks over at Jack, who is clearly shaking now. Slowly she opens the door and gets out of the car. She walks around to the other side and opens Jackís door.
"Get out of the car Jack," Samantha says flatly.
"No. I donít want to die," Jack says, his voice cracking, but not yet cracked.
"Get out the car," Samantha says louder.
"Please donít kill me! Iíll do anything you want me to, just donít kill me!" Jack says his voice hopelessly and completely cracked.
"Donít make me shoot you in the car. I said get out!" Samantha says quietly yet firmly.
"No!" Jack yells, completely terrified.
Samantha pulls the gun out from the waistband of the off white pants that she was made to wear. She aims at Jackís head and slowly starts to squeeze the trigger.
"Wait! Iíll get out," Jack says jumping out of the car.
"Finally youíre out of the car. Iím really sorry that our little friendship has to end this way, but Iíll always remember you and be thankful to you for helping me get out of that awful place," Samantha says aiming at Jack.
Jack quickly drops to his knees in front of her, crying.
"Please donít kill me! Spare my life! Iím not ready to go! Iím young to die!" he blubbers, grabbing the bottom of her pants.
Samantha lets out an inarticulate yell before hitting Jack on the side of the face with the gun. Jack cries out and is knocked down. He grabs his face as he lies on the ground.
"Stand up!" Samantha roars.
Jack, not wanting to disobey her, quickly stands up holding his face.
"At least die with some pride man! Begging for your life after someone has reached the point of decision is pointless! There is also no dignity in begging like a baby! If you are going to die, do it with pride so at least you and your killer know that you didnít try to beg your way out of the inevitable! Begging for your life will only piss the person who is about to kill you off even more so! Begging and then dying anyway is like dying with your pants around your ankles, useless and an embarrassment to those who knew you! That is a lesson my father made sure I understood well, and you should respect that lesson!"
Jack looks at her with anger, fear, hate, and contempt. He wipes the tears out of his light eyes and looks her straight into her dark ones. He sucks up all the terror and fear so that it does not show.
"Good you have finally stopped shaking like a leaf, at least on the outside," Samantha says smiling.
Jack doesnít answer her, he just stares her down.
"Like I said before, Iím sorry this is the way our friendship has to end. I actually liked you Jack, I wish it didnít have to end this way. Thatís the reason I told you my code name and code word, especially since youíll be taking it to your grave."
Jack still does not respond, but now a tear is forming in his eye.
"Turn around Jack, weíll do this quickly."
Jack slowly turns around. Samantha puts the cold metal gun against his head.
"Iím sorry," Samantha whispers.
There is a gun shot and birds fly everywhere. Samantha looks down at what is left of Jack. She sighs sadly and climbs back into the car. She starts the car and drives away quickly, back down the way she came.
"Whatís the matter Nick?" Howie asks looking over at him from the passenger seat.
Nick sighs and turns the radio, thatís blaring Dru Hillís song "Sleeping In My Bed", off. Brian, A.J., and Kevin stop talking immediately.
"I think Ashley is cheating on me," Nick announces to them.
"What makes you think that?" Brian asks with difficulty.
"Sheís always sneaking off somewhere when she thinks Iím sleep. She hangs around with her "friends" all the time. Itís just different than how it used to be when we first started dating," Nick explains sadly.
"Sorry Nick, I hope if she is you can just drop her little two-faced ass somewhere with no regrets," A.J. says.
"Thatís the problem, I think Iím in love with her," Nick says now on the verge of tears.
"Have you told her how you feel? Maybe if you do, sheíll see that the slimeball sheís messing with isnít the one she wants, you are," Kevin suggests.
"Thanks for the advice Kevin, I might do that later on tonight," Nick says wiping at his eyes. "Guys be honest. Have you seen Ashley with any other guys?"
"No. Not unless you count the fact that sheís always hanging around with Brian, but theyíre best friends so that doesnít really count," Howie says.
"Thatís right. Brian, you are best friends with Ashley. Has she told you anything about someone else or been acting strange around you?" Nick says gaining a little bit of hope.
Brian takes a deep breath and slowly lets it out.
"No, Ashley hasnít been acting strange nor has she told me about someone else," Brian answers, a little panicked. (whispered) "She doesnít have to tell me, I am that slimeball."
For a second, thereís a look on Kevinís face as if he had heard what Brian just said. Then he shakes his head and looks back up at Nick.
"Well thatís great! Maybe it was just me being paranoid!" Nick says happily.
As Howie and A.J. are reassuring Nick that it was just him being paranoid, Kevin leans over to Brian.
"I think we need to have a talk little cuz," Kevin whispers quickly before joining in the reassuring party.
Brian takes a deep breath before he too begins to reassure Nick.
"Okay Iím going to be straight with you, I have this horrible feeling that something bad is going to happen tonight," Amanda says as she walks through the doors of the mallís Dillards.
"What do you mean?" Ashley asks worriedly turning to Amanda. "Something like someone being caught doing something or something like we are all going to die something? Because I have a feeling that something is going to happen also, I just donít know what."
"I donít know what kind of problem itís going to be, but I know that whatever happens, itís going to happen tonight and that its going to be bad," Amanda whispers to Ashley.
"Amanda, Ashley! Taylor, Sonya, and I are going to go to the Icing to look for some accessories," Melissa calls back as she, Taylor, and Sonya turn the corner.
"Yeah whatever!" Ashley shouts back.
"God they are so annoying!" Amanda says flatly as she and Ashley start to walk towards the benches.
"Yeah and did you see what they are wearing? They are practically busting out the tops and donít have enough fabric for the bottoms," Ashley says sourly.
"I just donít know how they could be so dumb! We are going to one of the fanciest restaurants, everyone is dressed fancy, weíre wearing these gorgeous gowns, and theyíre oblivious to the whole thing!" Amanda fumes.
"I know, theyíre not completely there if you know what I mean. Itís like trying to teach an octopus how to be a good dog!" Ashley agrees. "I mean whenever I see the guys with them I think ĎCome on now, you could definitely do so much better than that."
"I doubt Howie could," Amanda corrects.
They both sit down on the nearest bench.