Piper’s calling. I excuse myself from whatever conversation Eric calls that and heads outside. It’s still nice out and I don’t need to be stuck in the house alone with the predator that’s my “dad”.
“Piper, what’s the call for?”
“Alea! Alea! I need-” She’s having a panic attack and with her asthma it can’t be any good. “It’s Rose, he’s here. He-he hasn’t s-seen me yet.”
“Piper calm down. Where are you?”
“I’m at the boardwalk with Belle!” Damn. Belle also needs help.
“Do you have your inhaler?” The line clicks. Without a second to waste, I rush down an alley and go Lightning. Thunder cracks from behind me as I race down the boulevard and up Main Street. I’m crossing through the park and past Patriot Avenue. Then, I see what I’m working with.
Police are showing up as Rose has got his gunmen lined across the boardwalk. Someone calls my phone. “Belle?”
“Alea, please-please. I need you!”
“Belle, I can’t talk right now,” I try to say in a hushed voice. It doesn’t work. He sees me. With a snap of his fingers, he’s standing right in front of me. He takes my phone and crushes it. Next, he smiles.
“I know where she’s at.” Okay, remember this guys: no matter how much of an ass your sister is, always save her. And that’s what I plan on doing. Rose disappears leaving me little time to figure out where Belle is.
Is she behind that bush on the beach? Nope. Inside Mellow Yellow’s surf shop? Nope. In fact she’s nowhere on this boardwalk. Except for...A scream from the bathrooms tells me where they’re at. I run as fast as I could to get there. “Rose stop!”
He turns to look at me. “I know exactly how this ends, Lightning. You’re not the only one who’s traveled through time.” What is he talking about? Red lightning forms in the air around him and caught off guard, I’m knocked to the ground. With faster speed than I can comprehend, he delivers a final strike to my face and I’m out cold.
Alea, get up! Get up, Alea! Piper charges out of the stall next to me. “You lay one hand on her or her sister, you’re going to have to go through me!”
“Piper!” Now I’m out of my stall pleading with my eyes for Piper to get back. She doesn’t.
Rose takes care of it for me. He waves his hand and Piper is thrown back into the stall where I hear her colliding with the base of the toilet. Slowly, he approaches me. My legs turn to jelly and I need support from the wall to stay up.
“Please don’t...please don’t,” I whisper to myself as salty water leaks down my face.
Oh my god, that hurt. I can barely move. My vision’s blurred, but I see clearly what’s about to happen. I try to get up.
I can’t. All I can do is watch helplessly as Rose puts his hand around my scared sister’s throat and lifts her into the air. Her face goes from a bronze color to pink. Now, it’s dark red. Belle squirms in the thing’s grasp unable to free herself. She gasps and chokes, but Rose’s power is too strong.
With one last look of pain, her neck snaps and her eyes roll back into her head.
A long time ago…
“You can’t stop me from doing what’s right! Don’t destroy these turtles’ nests!” Belle yelled. Alea, her four-year old twin, ran in for reinforcements. “Alea! You have to help me.”
The leader of the three businessmen chuckled. “Listen, kids. You really can’t stop us.”
“Yea we can.” Belle stood there defiant in her belief.
One man knelt down so that he was on the same level as the girls. “You and what army?”
“ALEA, ATTACK!” Belle yanked at his hair and Alea jumped onto another’s leg, refusing to let go. The man tried to wiggle her off his leg and he succeeded. She fell into the sand blinking as though she was recollecting herself. Belle, now on the back of her opponent, attempted to reign him in with his hair.
“Girls! Girls!” Christian ran up to the commotion. All fighting ceased. “What is going on here?” Diana grabbed the girls and motioned them away from the three men.
“Daddy, they’re trying to destroy these nests to construct a new building. Do something!”
“Is this true? This is a public beach. The land there can’t be sold.” Belle and Alea smiled smugly at the men.
“With all due respect sir, what do you think you know? We have court documents stating-”
“With all due respect,” Christian started, taking out his badge. “I’m a lieutenant in the Beantown Police Department and if you touch these nests you’ll be harming the lives of an endangered species.” The men’s faces went white.
“W-Well, umm…” They were lost at words. “Have a good day Lieutenant!”
When the men were gone, Christian looked at his daughters who were hiding behind Diana. “Girls…”
Alea stepped out first. “No, don’t do it,” Belle whispered.
“Yes Daddy?” Alea asked, ignoring her.
“Belle…” Christian watched his daughter hug Diana’s legs and continue to hide. He looked into Diana’s eyes and she stepped aside.
“Aww man, really Diana? Fooey!” Belle kicked up a little tuft of sand. Christian raised an eyebrow. “Sorry Daddy.”
“Now girls, what did I say about standing up for what you believe in?”
“Umm...don’t do it?” Alea suggested.
“Umm...doing that’s like mowing the lawn.”
“What?” Christian was confused with that one. He knelt down on one knee. “Do it the right way. We don’t fight, we talk and cooperate.”
“But Daddy, you fight everyday.”
“Some things you’ll understand when you're my age. For now go find Mommy!” The twins scurried away.