Friday, May 14, 2010

Danger at Alamo

Danger at Alamo

“Hey, Lea, wait up!” Allie bumped and dodged her way through the line getting off of the Alamo school bus.

Lea turned at the sound of her friend’s voice. “Hurry up! I’m starved!”

Allie smiled. Lea was always hungry. “Me, too; let’s get to the cafeteria before all of the little kids get in line.”

The cafeteria was quickly filling as the two best friends slid into line behind a lanky young man.

“Hey, Matt, save some gravy for us.” Allie was only half teasing.

“’morning Allie. I’ll leave you a spoonful.”

True to his word, he left enough for the two girls to fix their food and make their way to a table. Soon both girls were polishing off the last couple of bites.

“Feel better?” Allie teased her friend. “I was afraid you were going to fight Matt for that gravy.”

“I do feel better.” Lea leaned back in her chair and looked around the cafeteria.

“Me too.” Allie’s hand reached out for her chocolate milk.

“Allie!” The exclamation stopped the named teen’s hand in mid grasp.

“What, Lea? What happened?” Concern filled Allie’s voice as she started turning to see what could have prompted such a reaction from her friend.

Lea ducked her head and whispered, “Shhh. Don’t look!

“Don’t look where? At what?” Quizzed Allie.

Lea looked up, pretending nonchalance. “Ok, in a minute I want you to look over in that darkened corner by the back wall. It’s a new guy wearing a Texas Rangers T-shirt and dark black hat.”

Allie immediately twisted around to look in the direction Lea had indicated.

“Not now! Don’t be so obvious!” frustration was evident in Lea’s voice.

“Geez, I just wanted to see what you were so excited about.” Allie turned back to her friend and was searching Lea’s face for a clue of what was wanted from her.

“Ok, turn slowly.” Lea watched her friend to ensure that the instructions were being followed. “Do you see him?” The excitement in her voice could barely be contained. “Count to yourself while you look.”

“What are you talking about?” Allie had turned back to her friend with a look that clearly said ‘Are you out of your mind?’

“I know what you’re thinking and no, I’m not crazy. Do as I say. I will explain in a minute.” Lea gave her instructions in such a matter-of-fact way that Allie felt compelled to comply.

“Ok, I looked and I counted. Explain.”

“He is a vampire.” Lea looked at Allie with a smug smile of satisfaction spreading across her face.

Allie turned once again to spy on the person in question.

“Don’t forget to count” admonished Lea. “Some vampires can read our thoughts; so, if you count or think of something complicated, they don’t know what we’re thinking.”

“Where did you get the idea that he is a ….vampire? You know they don’t really exist, don’t you?”

“Sure they do. There’s too much evidence out there. Those books and movies are too real to be completely made up. A thread of truth has to run through all of the myths.” Lea paused just long enough to glance across the room. “Look at him. He is gorgeous, so pale and white. Real people don’t look that white. He is sitting in the cafeteria but he isn’t eating a bite. Vampires don’t eat. They just drink blood.” Lea paused to glance once again at the new student. “Look at his chest and muscled arms. I bet his body is rock hard. Just like someone that is dead. We’re going to find out.”

“We? Keep me out of this!” Allie sounded so emphatic that Lea hesitated for just a second before going on.

“Yes, we,” stated Lea.

“No.” Allie’s weak protest was quickly over powered by the ringing of the bell and scraping of student’s chairs, as the room vacated.

“Bye Allie, see you later.”

Allie made it to her first hour biology class with plenty of time to spare. Her assigned seat was toward the back of the class and that suited her just fine. Today that location would give her the opportunity to work on her unfinished assignment without being obvious. With her head down in concentration she failed to notice the new student talking to the teacher; but immediately noticed when a pale, white figure walked by her seat on his way to the empty desk on the very back row.
Although Mr. Wade had taken roll and was giving page number instructions Allie just had to slyly remove her cell phone from her pocket and text her friend. “u wont guess whos in here!! vampire.”

In a short time Allie’s phone vibrated in her hand. With a quick look she read, “wow! see if he’s smart, vampires are really smart.”

She had just enough time to text, “OK” and slip her cell back in her pocket before Mr. Wade walked past. Her heart began to beat rapidly when he stopped right by her desk. She just knew he had seen her cell and was going to take it.

He didn’t ask for the phone. Instead he paused and turned to address the room. “Class, we have a new student. This is Brian Watson.” A gesture of the hand indicated the boy sitting on the back row, a couple of chairs behind Allie. “Mr. Watson comes to us from Seattle Washington and has won several awards in science fairs.”

Oh my gosh, thought Allie. As soon as the teacher had moved to the other side of the classroom she texted her friend. “he is very smart +u wont guess what else”
Her phone soon vibrated. “WHAT?”

Allie’s fingers couldn’t move fast enough. “came from seattle washington!”
The answer came almost as soon as the send button had been hit. “omg, smart, rain, no sun-- vampires!! what did I tell u?”

Another close call with Mr. Wade motivated Allie to put her phone away and concentrate on class for the rest of the hour. It didn’t seem like very many minutes had passed before the bell was ringing and her phone was vibrating.

It was a new message from Lea, “follow him!”

So, she did. He walked out of the main building, deliberately keeping close to the walls of the building so that he would be in the shade as he strode to the gym. Allie didn’t need to follow any further. She texted her friend as she threaded her way down the hall and into her next class. “gym with u! plus, he walked n SHADE the whole way!!”

“i told u” came her friend’s answer.

Allie was soon seated in her American Literature class. She knew Lea wouldn’t be able to text her from PE. Students had to dress out and didn’t have any pockets for their cells. The fact that they were spending the hour reading to themselves didn’t help matters. That just gave Allie’s active imagination time to run wild.

One picture kept flashing in Allie’s mind. When Mr. Wade had introduced Brian to the class She had looked straight back into red eyes. Allie’s heart raced. In the book Lea had told her about the newly converted vampires had red eyes and that meant they were really “thirsty” for blood.

Something else suddenly had the palms of Allie’s hands sweating. Lea had mentioned speed. Vampires could move so fast that the eye couldn’t see them. What if this vampire had read Lea’s mind? What if he zipped into the shower and drank Lea’s blood because she had figured him out? The police will find her dead and never have a clue. “And then he will come for me!” The words were unconsciously whispered out loud.

The ringing bell helped to ease the embarrassment Allie felt. She snatched up her books and almost ran to meet her friend in the cafeteria, half-way fearing that Lea might not show up. Relief washed over Allie as she spotted her friend. She waived her hand to signal where she was. “You have no idea how much I worried about you” Allie blurted out as soon as the two of them had bought food and found seats. She related her imagined thoughts to Lea while they ate.

Lea sat listening with a look of real fear on her face. “I never even considered something like that. You could be right. We might really be in danger.”

“That’s why I was so scared! I honestly didn’t know if you would show up or not!” Allie looked pleadingly into her friend’s face. “What are we going to do?”

Lea sat in deep thought for a minute. “I’ve got an idea.” She gave her friend a strange look.

Allie had been leaning in to talk earnestly to her friend but now she pushed back and eyeballed Lea suspiciously. “What?”
That word spoke volumes. Allie knew that Lea’s plans often meant trouble for both of them.

“OK,” Lea motioned for Allie to lean in closer so she could talk in a whisper. “You have fourth hour office aide…”

Lea didn’t even get to finish her sentence before Allie protested, “NO! I’m not getting kicked out of school!”

“No, listen. You won’t get kicked out. You won’t even get caught. I can’t do it or I would. You are the only one that can save us from the vampire.” Lea argued her case as if their lives depended on it and Allie’s silence encouraged Lea to continue. “When counselor Reed goes to lunch you disappear into her office for a minute and look at the files on her desk. The vampire is new so you know that file will probably still be out. Write down as much as you can and then get out of there fast!”

Allie let out a long sigh. “Ok, I’ll do it.”

The ringing bell once again heralded action. Both girls headed to their respective destinations. One was to sit impatiently in anticipation of some news about their enemy, the vampire, and the other was nervously dreading the role of detective.
Allie had to grin, despite her fear. Lea was right, again. The file lay on the desk in full view. It was even opened as if Mrs. Reed had been reading it when she was called away. Lea was often right and that was what frightened Allie.

Grabbing a pencil and sticky notepad, she began to write--Bill and Joann Watson, Seattle Washington, 1410 Willow Drive….

The phone rang and Allie froze. Someone answered it in the main office but the scare had Allie’s heart racing. “What else do I need?” she muttered to herself. Turning the page over, one word jumped out at her. “Oh my gosh!”

Allie replaced the file just as she had found it, walked back into the main office and gave the excuse that she needed to make a trip to the restroom. She had to find Lea!

At the first hint of vibration Lea covertly opened her cell phone. “meet u n bathrm now!”

That was all it said. What had Allie found that was so urgent? It didn’t take Lea long to convince her history teacher that she had to go to the bathroom. She was soon flying down the hall to meet her trusted friend.

“What is it? What did you find out?” Lea exclaimed as soon as she entered the doorway and found her friend wiping tears from her eyes.

“I thought I was going to die!” Allie was crying and laughing and shaking all at the same time.

“What’s wrong? Tell me, now!” Lea’s face was distorted with worry at her friend’s reaction.

Allie took a deep breath. “I read the file. Brian is,” she paused as her mind searched for the right word, “unusual. He has no coloring in his skin, eyes or hair. He has to stay out of the sun as much as possible and even regular light hurts his eyes. Lea, Brian is an albino.”

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