River Fae Chapter 15: Who’s Fault is it Anyway?

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Drea and I co-ran the F.R.O. meetings for the next few months. It was going really well, she and I got along great and we were both very passionate about the subject. After learning about everything the scientists have done, I wanted to break free too. In school they taught us about the scientists and the times before the discovery of supernaturals, but they always sugarcoated it. I learned more about our history here than I ever did in twelve years of school. I had no idea how much the older generation suffered.

We were planning a large meeting with every member of F.R.O., not just us board members. We had to plan carefully, there were a lot of us and we didn’t want to draw unwanted attention from the scientists. I didn’t even want to think about what could happen if we got found out. It wouldn’t be pretty.

“Well, I think we should wrap this up for today.” Drea clapped her hands together and smiled. Everyone slowly filed out of the small conference room one by one, and it was driving me insane. I was itching for the next part of our co-directing. My favorite part. As soon as the last person left, Drea made her way over to my stool.

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“Will the boys be home?” Drea whispered after she kissed me. “I’m not sure, I think Maple might be going out with some friends, not sure about Carrot though.” I shrugged. “Well, there’s two floors, I doubt he needs both of them.” She smirked.

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“Well, we should probably go claim a floor, the first one has too many windows.” I offered her my arm, and we left HQ excitedly.

——-

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“Pst, Carrot. Wake up.” I urged my half-brother awake. I wasn’t entirely sure how he’d fallen asleep so fast after our meeting.

“What do you want.” He mumbled. “I”m too tired for this.”

“Why? You fell asleep before me last night.”

“What do you want?” He asked, ignoring my question.

“Um, can Drea and I use the room?”

“Again?” He rolled his eyes when I nodded. “Fine, but I’m cranking my music this time.”

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“Thanks man, I owe you one.”

“Lucky for all of us, I’m not a screamer.” He mumbled, probably thinking I couldn’t hear him. As soon as he left the room, I pulled Drea into it.

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We didn’t waste any time making use of the second floor and the second floor bathroom.

——-

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This week I had to go to the cemetery alone, Maple was working overtime at the studio in hopes of getting promoted. I didn’t mind that much, it wasn’t that big of a deal.

The cemetery was pretty deserted when I got there. Not many people were buried here, most people preferred to be cremated or buried on their own property. Maple and I usually had the place to ourselves.

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But it wasn’t completely deserted, I realized this when I glanced over at Chrissy’s grave and saw Hero looking miserable. I wasn’t exactly on the best terms with the man but I couldn’t just walk away without doing anything.

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“Hey, mind if I sit?” I asked as I approached him cautiously.

“Her cat died today.” He mumbled.

“What?”

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“Her cat, Atlantic.  He died today. He was older than you.” He wiped his eyes and took a swig out of one of the many beer bottles scattering the ground.

“He was old, it happens. Are you ok?” I didn’t really know what to say, I’ve never seen him so upset like this. Not even when Chrissy died.

“He was all I had left of her.” He sobbed. I felt awful. He really did love his wife, and their only child turned out so awful, it must’ve been so hard for him.

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“I was such an awful father.”

“That’s not true. You didn’t do anything wrong.” I tried to comfort him, but I wasn’t very good at it.

“But I did. It’s all my fault.”

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“You can’t blame yourself for something your daughter did. You did the best you could, there’s nothing you could’ve done differently.” I tried to be convincing, I didn’t entirely believe what I was saying but I couldn’t kick him while he was down. I honestly never really thought about how this all effected him. I don’t think anyone really thinks about the murderers side of the family, and how it effects them. People usually only think about the victims side of the family.

“My daughter killed two innocent women. I must’ve gone wrong somewhere.”

“That’s not your fault. You didn’t tell her to do that. She wasn’t sane, and if it’s anyone’s fault, it’s mine. I should’ve told someone she wasn’t stable. I should’ve gotten her the help she needed. If it’s anyone’s fault, its mine.” I admitted. I’ve been over it a million times in my mind, and it should’ve been obvious to me. She wasn’t sane, she needed help. And instead, I made it so much worse. It really was all my fault.

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“I’ve always known she was unstable. She did things as a child, horrible things. I knew something was wrong, but I didn’t want to admit it to myself. I didn’t want to believe there was something wrong with the child Chrissy and I created. If I had accepted that, and gotten her the help she needed, this wouldn’t have happened.” He started sobbing again, and chugged the rest of his beer.

“Hey, why don’t we go back to my house? I can make us some hot coffee, and we can talk there.” I felt horrible for him, he was no longer the strong army man I once knew. He was a broken man who had lost everything he loved, and I knew I couldn’t leave him out here alone.

“Yea, that sounds good.” He smiled at me through his tears. He tried to stand up on his own, but he was much drunker than he realized because he fell right over. I helped him onto his feet and wrapped my arm around his shoulder.

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“Shouldn’t we pick up the bottles?” He mumbled as I guided him out of the cemetery.

“Nah, if we do, then what will the teenagers who work the night shift clean?” I joked, making him laugh.

“True, true.”

——-

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“How you feeling?” I asked Hero after I got him to my house.

“Alright. Thanks for this kid, I’ve been having a hard time lately and this really means a lot.”

“No problem, you’ve always been like an uncle to me.”

“Why aren’t you mad at me?” He sighed and placed his chin in his palm.

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“Because this isn’t your fault.” I couldn’t be mad at him anymore after seeing him like this. He needed support right now, not hate.

“I just told you why it was my fault.”

“I know you think that it’s your fault, but it isn’t. I know it’s hard to admit there’s something wrong with someone you love, and I don’t blame you for any of this. You shouldn’t blame yourself for this either.”

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“It’s so easy to blame myself. It’s a lot easier than blaming her. I don’t want to believe my only child is a monster. It’s hard to believe that the tiny baby I once held in my arms became a cold-blooded murderer. If I tell myself it’s my fault, it’s a lot easier.”

“I don’t know what it’s like to be a father, but I do know what it’s like to blame yourself for something that’s not your fault. But what happened is neither my fault or yours. We didn’t do anything wrong, we didn’t know how bad she was. That’s not our fault.”

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“I’m so sorry, River.”

“I’m sorry too.”

——-

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“I’m glad the two of you could talk, I think you both need it.” Drea and I were taking a walk up to the lake, she said we should go outside more. It was a little strange but I went with it.

“Yea, it really helped.”

“That’s good.” She smiled. We walked in silence for a while, until she stopped me right next to the lake.

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“River, I need to tell you something.” She blurted out nervously.

“Is everything okay?”

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“Just promise me you won’t get mad. I-I really don’t want you to be mad at m-me.” She started to sob.

“Hey, it’s okay. You can tell me anything. I promise I won’t get angry.” I assured her. I was nervous too, I had no idea what she was about to tell me, and I really hoped she wasn’t going to end things between us. I really liked what we had, and I didn’t want that to end.

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“I’m pregnant.”

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River Fae Chapter 14: F.R.O.

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“Okay, now that everyone’s here we can get started.” Hydrangea smiled at us after Hero took a seat in the last remaining chair. I could feel him staring at me, but I couldn’t even look at him. He resembled her way too much.

“Alright, so River, Welcome to F.R.O.” She waved her arms around, showing off the room.

“F.R.O.?”

“Fae Restoration Organization. We’re trying to restore your family to power and break away from the scientists.” She explained.

“How long had this been going on?” I looked around the room at the familiar faces. It was obvious that this wasn’t the first meeting.

“Honestly, we’ve been doing this for a few years, sweetheart.” My mom chimed in.

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“Are we the only members?” If we were going to overthrow the scientists, we were gonna need a lot more people.

“Of course not, we’re just the board members.”

“What do you guys do?”

“We strategize. We need a plan.” Hydrangea spoke passionately about F.R.O., it was liberating to see her so invested in something. She was never like this when I worked with her. She was a cold woman who didn’t mess around, but there was no passion behind her coldness.

“Do we have a plan?”

“Multiple, but we need to be absolutely positive they’ll work.” She sighed. I had a feeling she was about to tell the story of the incident, and my feeling was right. “I had just gotten married when it happened. His name was Moss Blu, and he was the one who originally got my family into F.R.O. when I was a teenager. He was very passionate about the organization. He wanted to get out, explore the world. They had a plan, they were gonna travel through the forest and try and find what was out there, and then come back. The got about five miles into the forest, and they were all electrocuted to death. I told him to go, I told him it’d be a great opportunity. He didn’t want to go, but I talked him into it. And he went, and so did my parents. All three of them died. And ever since, I’ve been completely devoted to this organization. Now it’s all I have.”

She wasn’t even tearing up as she told this awful story. I would’ve expected at least one tear, but no. She was so much stronger than I ever even realized. Maybe that’s why she was so cold all the time, she had lost so much. She always blamed herself for what happened to her husband and her parents. She threw herself into her detective work so she could distract herself, and she tried so hard not to make another mistake. She thought things over too much, which caused her to slip up again. And now, she didn’t have anything to lose, so she threw herself into this.

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“And that’s why we need to make sure our plans are completely fool-proof. We already have limited members, we can’t afford to lose anyone. That’s why we need to figure out everything the scientists are doing to keep us in. We need to figure out how to get past them. We need to be one step ahead at all times.”

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“So far, all we know is that they have some kind of electric field surrounding the valley, and anyone who tries to cross it dies. We don’t know how to get past it, but we have people working on that. We also have the ocean, but we don’t know what they have out there. We also have people working on that, but nothing on either so far.” My mom explained. All this information was making my head spin.

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“Actually, we’ve got something on the ocean. They have something out there too, it’s kind of like a large fisherman’s trap. We’re figuring out how to disarm it, even if its just for a little while.” Hero announced.

“So what does this mean?” I asked.

“In a few years, we might be able to send someone for help.” Hydrangea admitted excitedly.

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“And how long is that going to take? Do we really want our children growing up in a world like this?” Fern cried. Oh yea, I forgot to mention, Fern is pregnant with her first child, so she’s been extremely moody for the past month.

“I don’t think we’ll be ready anytime soon, these scientists are much more advanced than us. It’s gonna take us years. Maybe your children will be the ones going on the mission.” Hero tried to encourage her, but that just upset her even more.

“I don’t want my children to have to risk their lives for this.”

“Yes, but we don’t know them yet, we can’t make their decisions for them before they’re even born.” Maple chimed in.

“Well it won’t be my children.” She crossed her arms like a child.

“Fine, we’ll have more people for the job anyways.” Drea smiled and changed the subject. “Speaking of that, Carrot how are you coming on recruiting new members?”

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“I’ve gotten at least ten more people involved, all of them originals.” Originals were what we called vampires and Fae who were here since the beginning of the experiments.

“No younger recruits?” Mom asked, and he shook his head.

“No, none of them are very interested. They don’t want to fight for something that could endanger their lives.” He said solemnly.

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“You could always stop by one of my concerts, there’s lots of younger, rebellious people who go to them. I bet you could get at least five more for the team.” Dill offered, and Carrot nodded.

“Will do.” It was weird for me to see my brothers interact, I had no idea they even knew each other.

“Alright, well I’ve got practice right now, I’ve gotta go.” Dill stood up and said goodbye, then left.

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Drea sat down in Dill’s empty seat, and turned to my mom. “So how is Basil doing with the books? Has he been able to score any more?”

“He’s there right now, actually.” Mom smirked.

“What books?”

“Oh, your uncle has been going back to the lab, volunteering for more experiments, and he’s been stealing a few of our old books every time he goes. He’s helped us out a lot, I mean look what he’s already gotten us.” She waved her hands over the table. There were a lot of old books here, it must’ve taken him forever to steal all these.

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“Is he doing okay? Are they hurting him?” I worried.

“He does what he has to too help us.” She simply stated.

“You’re okay with that?” I asked, I would’ve thought my mom would protest his return to the lab after everything he went through with scientists.

“No, but he’s a grown man. He chooses to go, there’s not much I can do to stop him.”

“Alright, does anyone have anything else?” Drea asked, trying to keep the tone in the room light.

“No, I don’t think so.” Maple looked around the room, and everyone nodded.

“Alrighty then, you’re dismissed.”

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“Except River, you stay.” Drea smirked at me as everyone else started to leave.

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“Actually Drea, would it be okay if I talked to him for a minute?” Hero asked. Drea looked at me, looking for an answer.

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“No, not today.” I tried to keep myself from getting angry with him. I knew it wasn’t his fault, but he was so easy to blame, it was hard not to.

He nodded slightly and left the room quickly. I felt kinda bad, he used to be like an uncle to me. But now it was hard to even look at him without seeing her.

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“He’s not a bad guy, River.” Drea said softly as I approached her.

“I know, I’m just not ready.”

“Understandable.” She smiled. “So, did you like the meeting?”

“I did, but why didn’t any of you tell me before?” I had been wondering that the whole time. They all were in this, and I had no idea. How long had it been going on like that?

“We were going to actually, that’s why I needed you on the Gardenia case and not Fern. She was already in this, and we wanted to make sure you were ready.”

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“And so you think I’m ready now?”

“I know you’re ready now.”

“I know I am too.” I smiled at her.

“So, how would you feel about being co-director?” She asked.

“Really? Why not someone who’s been here longer than I have?”

“Two reasons: One, you’re the heir to the Fae crown. If your family was still in power, you’d be the king. Two, because I like you a lot better than anyone else here.” She explained. I felt like she was flirting with me.

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“I’d love to be your co-director.” I flirted back.

“Welcome to the team.” She beamed.

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“There’s also something else I wanted to ask.” Drea looked away from me shyly.

“What is it?” I asked.

“Well, um, would you maybe wanna go out sometime?” She was nervous, and she looked freaking adorable. It was impossible to say no to her.

“I’d love to.”

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She kissed me quickly, I barely had any time to react. “Goodnight, Co-director.” She smirked, before running out of the conference room.

I had a lot to process tonight.

———

*Carrot*

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“Uh hey, Maple, can I talk to you?” I nervously entered Maple’s bedroom. I was about to do something that could jeopardize everything I had currently, but I didn’t care anymore. Things needed to be said.

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I was actually surprised he was even still awake. It was almost two in the morning, and I fully expected to walk right out of here without saying anything. Trust me, I’ve done it a million times before. I would wait until River started to snore, then I’d sneak out of the room and come in here to talk to him, but he’s always sleeping. But not tonight.

“Yea sure, give me a sec.” He said, without even looking up from the screen. I took a few more steps into the room, and I was now standing in the middle of the room.

He got up from the desk and made his way over to me. “Wanna take a seat?”

“No thanks, I’d prefer to stand.”

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“Are you okay? You seem really nervous.” He asked me, making me want to run out of the room without saying anything.

“Um, yea. I just h-have something I need to say to you.” I told him, my voice cracking under my nervousness.

“Sure.”

I took a deep breath, trying to remember the speech I practiced in the bathroom mirror a million times. “Um, so, we’ve been friends for a while, right?” I asked, and he gave me a puzzled look, then nodded. “Well um, I was just curious, but do you remember last night in the hot tub, when you said you were interested in someone?”

“Yea.”

“Well, I was wondering, who is it?”

“Why do you wanna know?”

“I was kinda hoping it was me.” I admitted.

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His face lit up like a Christmas tree. “Wait, really?”

“Yea. Ever since I started getting to know you I started to like you. It’s been really confusing, to be honest. I’ve been dating a girl for the past seven years of my life, I never thought I’d ever fall for a guy. But I guess shit happens.” I laughed, and thankfully so did he.

“What about your girlfriend?”

“She dumped me. Said I was too distant. I had a hard time being near her when I knew I was falling for someone else. I couldn’t do that to her, and I didn’t want a repeat of River. So I waited until she dumped me.”

“So now what?”

“Well you never answered my question, was it me?” I asked, and he nodded. “Thank god. I was gonna look like a damn fool if it wasn’t.”

“But Carrot, if we’re gonna do this, we’re gonna have to keep it a secret from River.” He frowned.

“Why? He’s pretty open-minded. He has a gay step-sister.”

“I know, but I don’t want him to feel like a third wheel. It’s weird living with a couple, and I don’t wanna put him through that. Not right now.” He grabbed my hand softly. “Can you do that?”

I nodded. “I’d do anything.”

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Maple smiled at me. “Me too.” He said, before pulling me into a kiss. Kissing him was so different from kissing Cinna. It was magical. I could feel him start to get hard against me, and I decided to be a tease.

So with a sudden burst of confidence, I pulled back from the kiss and grinned at him.

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“Night.” I kissed him on the cheek, then walked out of the room with a huge smile on my face.

River Fae Chapter 13: Making a Splash

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Hydrangea was coming over to swim today, and I was extremely nervous. We’ve only known each other in a professional environment, and I was afraid she wouldn’t like me outside of it. I really wanted her to like me, she was Tulip’s only remaining family and I knew that I’d have to make her like me if Tulip was still alive.

She told me she was gonna be here at ten, and it was now ten-thirty. I was worried she wouldn’t show, and I really hoped that wasn’t the case. It was so embarrassing to sit there with my friend and brother, waiting for someone who might not even show, so I sent them out to the pool early.

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Finally after fifteen more minutes of waiting, the doorbell rang. I jumped off the couch to answer the door. Hydrangea stood on the front porch nervously, I’ve never seen her so vulnerable. It was strange.

“Hey Drea, come on in.” I invited her in, and I noticed she had her hair down. I’ve never seen her hair down. I had no idea it was so long.

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“Thanks for inviting me over, you have such a nice house.” She looked around in awe. “Oh, and I’m sorry I’m so late, my roommate needed a ride to work.”

“It’s no problem, now c’mon, let’s go swim.” We laughed and I lead her outside.

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“Wow, you’re backyard is huge!” She exclaimed as she ran outside. I really liked this side of her. I hoped I could see it more often.

“Yea, it’s a lot bigger than our old backyard. I love it.” I smiled.

“Hey Drea, River, come on in.” Maple called from the pool.

“Race ya.” Drea yelled and took off running. I couldn’t help but chuckle.

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She took the slide and I took the diving board and on the count of three we went into the pool.

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When I surfaced, Carrot was getting out of the pool. “Getting out already?”

“You know I’m not a fan of water.” He mumbled, and headed inside.

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“You better come back out.” I yelled after him. He grunted and waved me off, making everyone laugh.

“You’re such an older brother.” Hydrangea splashed me. I suddenly remembered my beach date with Tulip the day before she died, and how we had a splashing fight in the water that day.

“Um hey, how about we have a breath holding contest?” I suggested, trying to distract myself.

“Sure, you in Maple?”

“Nah, I’m good.”

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Maple offered to be the judge, but I think he was too involved in his romance novel to care. I didn’t mind though, I just wanted to get my mind off Tulip.

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“Hell yea!” I yelled when I found out I won.

“Ugh, you suck.” Drea joked.

“Hey, wanna relax on some rafts? We’ve got a few more if you want one.”

“Sure, I’d love to.”

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A few minutes later all three of us were relaxing on rafts.

“So, Maple whatcha reading?” Hydrangea asked, and he laughed.

“Don’t think you’d be interested, it’s a homoerotic novel.” He laughed, and she scrunched her face in horror.

“You’re right, not my thing.”

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Just then, Carrot came back outside.

“Hey, can you get me a soda too?” I asked.

“Get it yourself, jerk.” He joked.

“Why do you guys have a vending machine in your backyard?” Drea wondered aloud.

“My dad knows a lot of shady guys.” He simply stated before taking a seat on one of the law chairs.

“Hey River, where’s your bathroom?” Drea jumped off her raft and into the pool.

“It’s the door right off the kitchen, it’s impossible to miss.” I explained, and soon she was gone leaving just us guys. I slid off my raft and swam up next to Maple.

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“Having fun?”

“You so like her.” He stated, never even looking up from his book.

“Nonsense, she’s just a friend.”

“I can tell you like her dude, and honestly I think you’d make a great match.”

“No, I think you’re wrong, bro.” I grumbled, before swimming away and climbing out of the pool.

There was no way I could like her, she’s my deceased girlfriend’s sister. I’d be a terrible person if I dated her, it’d be like spitting on Tulip’s grave. I could never do that to her, no matter how cute her sister looked in that swimsuit.

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“Hey, mind if I join you?” Hydrangea’s voice broke through my thoughts of her and Tulip.

“Yea, take a seat.” I offered.

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“Oh, by the way, I think the longer hair suits you quite well.” She told me as she got comfortable in the chair.

“Thanks, I just kinda stopped getting it cut. I was surprised how badass it made me look.” I joked, making her laugh.

“You do look pretty badass.”

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“Hey guys, I’m starting the bonfire.” Carrot called out to no one in particular.

“Don’t burn yourself this time, I don’t wanna take you to the hospital again.” Maple shouted from the pool.

“What?” Hydrangea asked, half laughing.

“Yea, this idiot managed to light his shorts on fire. He was smart enough to jump in the pool, though he did get pretty burned.” I explained, remembering the incident that occurred only a month ago.

“How brilliant.”

“Hey, it was an accident.” Carrot grunted.

“Doesn’t make it any less funny.” Maple remarked.

——-

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“Come on Carrot, its a hot tub, it’s not like you’re gonna drown in it.” Maple teased.

“People have drowned in them before.” He replied nervously. Maple rolled his eyes.

“Yea, unsupervised children. You’re an adult, surrounded by other adults. We’re not gonna let you drown.”

“Fine.” He gave up and climbed into the hot tub.

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“So Maple, how have you been? We haven’t talked in so long.” Drea asked him.

“I’m doing ok, I’ve got a good job, some good friends,” He said as he punched Carrot on the shoulder. “And an awesome house. I think I’m doing pretty good. How about you?”

“I’m doing fine.” She sighed. “So, are you still single?”

“Yea, but I’ve got my eye on someone.” He smirked.

“Oh really? Who?”

“It’s a secret.” Maple winked at her and sunk further into the hot tub.

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“This thing isn’t that bad.” My half-brother stated.

“Yea man, water isn’t evil” I splashed him, and he frowned.

“You suck.” He crossed his arms and I shrugged. I really loved messing with him.

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“Do you guys do this often?” Drea asked.

“Maple and I use it almost every night, it’s a life saver after a stressful day at work.”

“Yea, I bet.”

“I think this would stress me out more.” Carrot remarked. “I think I’m gonna go inside.”

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“You sure you don’t wanna stay?” Maple asked, and Carrot shook his head.

“I’d rather be playing video games.”

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“You know what, that sounds like a great idea.” He gave me a knowing smile, and I knew exactly what he was thinking. He wanted me to make a move on Drea. Not gonna happen, sorry.

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“Don’t have too much fun without me.” He winked at me, making me blush. I glanced over at Drea to see if she understood what was happening, but she was too busy looking at the stars.

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I waited until Maple was inside before I said anything else. “Having fun?”

“Lots. You guys have such a cool place.” She beamed.

“Thanks, the hot tub was my idea.” I bragged, and she giggled.

“It was a pretty great idea.”

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“You’ve really changed.” She stated.

“So have you.”

“Yea, I used to me pretty uptight. But after losing Tulip, I decided that wouldn’t get me anywhere in life. It took me a while to completely let loose, but now that I have I don’t regret it. I’m the happiest I’ve been since before the incident.” She said. This was the third time I’ve heard someone mention the incident, and I was curious to know what happened. So I asked.

“What incident?”

“It’s not something I can tell just anyone. If you really wanna know, you can meet me at HQ tomorrow at nine o-clock.”

“I thought you didn’t do detective work anymore?”

“I don’t.”

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“Will you be there?: She asked hopefully.

“Yea, I don’t see why not.”

“Awesome.” She smiled, and started to get up. “I should get going.”

“Hey, do you wanna dry off by the bonfire for a little while?”

“Sure.”

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“You know it’s not your fault, right?” Drea whispered, her voice barely audible over the crackling of the fire.

“I’m pretty sure you’re wrong.” I responded, making her sigh.

“I used to think the same thing. But we can’t control what others do. How were we supposed to know what Clover would do? There’s no way we could’ve known, and there’s nothing we could’ve done. Things like this can only be blamed on the person who actually did the murdering. Not the people around the victim. It took me a while to realize this, and I want you to realize it too.” She sighed.

“Well at least the person the blame for this is in jail for the rest of her life.” I couldn’t even say her name aloud, it hurt too much.

“Yea. River, I want you to think about what I said, okay?” I nodded. “Good, now walk me to my car?”

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I walked her up to the front to say goodbye, when she pulled me into a hug. “Thank you, I really needed this.” She whispered into my shoulder.

“Anytime Drea, anytime.” I rubbed her back soothingly.

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“So I’ll see you tomorrow?” She asked.

“Yea.” I whispered.

“Good. Night River.” She pulled away from our hug and headed off to her car.

——–

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The next morning I arrived at HQ at nine o-clock sharp. As usual, my sister was the only one in the waiting room.

“Hey Fern, is Hydrangea in today? She told me to meet her here today.” I told her as I approached the counter.

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“Yea, she’s here. Follow me.” She walked around the counter and ran into the hallway before I could even move.

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She entered the door next to Drea’s old office. I’ve never been in that room before, I always assumed it was empty. I guess not.

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Fern was just taking a seat when I entered the room. The room had a long table in it, kinda like the one in the backroom. The table was covered in books and it smelled like the library. I took a look around the room, noticing the people sitting at the table.

“What’s going on?” I asked. I thought it was just gonna be Drea and I.

“Oh hey River, glad you could make it. Take a seat.” Drea said.

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I took a seat without looking at anyone. I felt oddly out of place even though these people were some of my closest friends.

Drea was still standing there, just staring at an old map on the wall. Everyone else was completely silent, and even though I had a billion questions, I didn’t want to be the one to break the silence. Thankfully I didn’t have too.

“I know you’re confused River. Don’t worry, you’re not in trouble or anything. I’ll explain everything when our last member gets here.” Drea explained.

As if on cue, the door swung open, causing everyone in the room to look up.

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“Hey, so sorry I’m late.” The man said. It took me a few seconds, but then I recognized him.

My psycho ex-girlfriend’s father was here.