You're Not in This Alone



I gazed into Lance’s furious eyes, beginning to feel weak. This couldn’t be right. He couldn’t be accusing me of killing Miranda, Leo, Jason, Ethan, and Grace.

“Hey, let’s not accuse people,” Faith said, sounding cool and calm. “We already tried that, and it didn’t help anything.”

“That was a while ago,” Lance retorted.

Gerard didn’t say anything, but he had been taking small steps towards me. Now he put his arm around me protectively.

“You can’t just accuse Ebony,” Nadia pointed out, her voice ringing strong despite her age and size. “Any of us could accuse anyone.”

“I think it’s different this time,” Shelby murmured. “Now five people have died. That’s more than a third of us.”

“We can’t just sit around and wait to die,” Sarah agreed quietly. “We have to do something.”

I looked into each of their eyes. I knew right away where everyone stood. Lance and Shelby were already convinced it was me, and Nadia and Skyler were on the edge. Tristan and Sarah were still wavering. The only people convinced it wasn’t me were Gerard and Faith.

I felt a sense of intolerable pain course through my body, getting stronger each time my heart beat. They truly thought it was me, and I couldn’t do anything about it.

“Maybe she’s poisoning them,” Lance suggested. Poison had been his stance since the beginning.

“She did give Miranda her milk this morning,” Skyler allowed, and I knew he’d been convinced too.

“She knew to kill Grace first,” Shelby said. “Come on, you can see it. She was the biggest threat. She had to be the first to go. Other wise someone could’ve told her who it was after they died.”

“Maybe Ethan was next because he can get away from people the easiest,” Lance suggested. “And then Jason because…”

“Because Jason pushed her and broke her arm,’ Tristan revealed to everyone. “Ebony didn’t fall down, Jason pushed her. He told me. He said he felt so guilty he had to tell someone. And then… poof. He died.”

“But why Leo?” Shelby asked.

“To bring you back,” Skyler said simply.

“Miranda was next because of how strong she is,” Lance said. “Come on, it had to be Ebony. She knows everyone. She is most likely.”

I looked around at all of them, feeling sick with pain. Almost all of them were now so sure it was me. Gerard was gripping me tightly. He was ready to run. He was ready to physically defend me, but even he had no words to convince them it wasn’t me.

I knew I couldn’t convince them either. No matter how much their accusations hurt me, there would be no way for me to prove myself innocent. No that they’d picked someone to blame, they wouldn’t stop.

Sarah, who was standing right next to me, looked up with tears in her eyes. Speaking for the first time, she asked, “Ebony, if it’s not you, why don’t you – why can’t you just know who it is, the way you know everything else?”

I felt tears coursing down my cheeks now. “I don’t choose what is revealed to me,” I whispered, knowing it was the wrong answer, even if it was the truthful one.

“How could you?” she cried. “I trusted you, since the first time I saw you. I… I loved you, more than I’d ever loved my parents.”

“You have to believe me,” I pleaded, falling to my knees and holding her sides. “I wouldn’t kill people. I love you, too, like a little sister. Even like a daughter.” Even though I spoke with honesty, all she heard was lies.

She pulled away, and my last hope faded. If Sarah didn’t believe I was innocent, the only person I had left was Gerard. That meant it was seven against two.

And then the fight started. Gerard grabbed me and tried to run, but as soon as we got ten feet away, Nadia teleported us back to our original position.

Deciding running was no use, Gerard flung me behind him and bent his knees, ready to fight.

“What do we do?” Sarah asked the others.

Lance frowned. “We kill her. She killed five people. Doesn’t she deserve the death penalty?”

Only Gerard replied, “No. Because you have no proof.”

“I think Lance is right,” Skyler said. “Gerard, we know you would defend Ebony at all costs, whether she’s guilty or innocent.”

“We should leave Gerard alone,” Shelby concluded. “How can we blame him for loving her?”

“Then it’s decided,” Lance stated. “How do we kill her?”

“She should burn,” Sarah spat caustically. “We’ll let her burn in her lies and treachery.”

Ropes appeared in Nadia’s hands. She thrust them at Lance. Lance and Tristan came forward.

Gerard fought them for all he was worth. He kicked, punched and even bit once they’d tied his hands behind his back, but eventually Tristan – only burdened with a bloody lip – forced Gerard’s face into the grass and sat on him, making him immobile.

I could only watch with blurry, tear blocked vision. I knew fighting was worthless. Besides, my body was already exhausted. I was in such despair that I thought, If they really think it’s me, let them kill me.

So I allowed them to tie me. Gerard was yelling, telling me to fight, swearing, and screaming. At last Tristan shoved his face into the grass so that his voice was muffled.

All I could say was, “I love you, Gerard. Don’t blame them when it’s over. Don’t blame them,” before my voice cracked.

Lance and Shelby pushed me into the house that the cemetery was in front of. I didn’t struggle, but they gripped me roughly enough to make me bleed.

They shoved me into a wood floored bedroom, bound my ankles as tightly as my wrists were bound, and locked the door behind them when they left. I lied still for a long time. As it got dark, I began to smell smoke. I realized they’d set the house on fire and were going to let me burn in it.

It took until I saw the flames leaking through the wall by the door for me to realize that this was what Gerard had dreamt about when he dreamt about fire. The tears that had recently been slowing down poured freely once more. I realized he had known all along I would die like this. He’d only refused to tell me because he believed people shouldn’t know when they will die. This is why he was so dark and sad.

I tried to crawl to the window. I wanted to see him one last time. But when I got there and lifted myself up, I only saw dark shapes moving around the yard. Although I couldn’t see Gerard, I knew he was the one trying to get away. I screamed out for him, and I heard his reply over the cackle of the fire.

Unable to hold myself up any longer because of the dizzying smoke, I fell to the ground. I screamed with all that I had. I heard him yelling back, but I couldn’t hear what he was saying.

Eventually my voice was too hoarse to scream, and I could only cry. As I felt the fire getting dangerously close to my skin, I knew it was almost the end. I was about to pass out. “I forgive you, Sarah,” I whispered, and then I was gone.
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I'm excited to post the next chapter, which is by far the most important one. I have most of it written. The next chapter is the scene that started the idea of the story. I thought of that scene first, and then built the story around it. Please comment!