Disclaimer: This is my story, my characters, my plot. Any similarities to other works is absolute coincidence and was not originally attended.

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The Enigma of Destiny

By: Katie Seals

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Chapter 5: Fight Back

Raine sighed, shielding her eyes from the bright, morning light. She glanced at her friend, a look of plea in her eyes.

"Theresa... I need your help."

Theresa eyed her warily, taking a sip of her mocha cappuccino. Whatever she needed help with, it was very, very serious. Raine had called Theresa at seven o' clock in the morning, begging her to meet with her at their favorite corner coffee shop. In other words... she was desperate.

"Raine... this better be serious..." She paused, checking her wristwatch. "Its not even eight o' clock yet... I didn't get in bed until two o' clock last night."

Raine nodded, cupping her hands around a steamy cup of black coffee. "I know, but I don't think I can do this alone."

Tucking her blonde hair behind her ear, Theresa gave her friend a worrisome look. "Oh, god... are you pregnant?!"

Raine's eyes widened, her cheeks burning into a deep, crimson shade. "God, no! It's nothing like that!"

Waving off a few staring people, Theresa leaned over the table, an angry look on her face. "Then what the hell am I doing here on four hours of sleep?"

Raine let her eyes fall to the cup of swirling liquid tightly held in her hands. She was right... she shouldn't have called her so early. But, she was running out of time. A month or two was already short enough, so every hour was vital in her eyes.

After a long silence, Theresa sighed heavily, shaking her head. "Raine... What are you hiding from me?"

"I-I need to find him, Theresa..."

"Find who-" Theresa stood abruptly, her chair falling out beneath her with a loud clatter. "Oh my god... you are pregnant!"

Raine ducked away from the crowd gathered around their table, silently gossiping with each other. She cursed at her friend, motioning her to sit down... and most of all, calm down.

"I told you... I am not pregnant! How can I be pregnant if I don't have a partner?!" Raine hissed between clenched teeth, making sure nobody else could pry into their conversation.

Theresa gave her an odd look, gathering her chair and sitting down warily. "Raine... please tell me what's wrong."

Raine clenched her fists, suddendly getting aggravated with her dramatic friend. "I am trying to Theresa!"

Theresa sunk sulkingly in her chair, taking a long sip of her cappuccino. Folding her hands in her lap, she prepped herself for the worst.

"I can't release this book without telling him Theresa."

Theresa's jaw dropped, her face becoming stale and mirthless. Gathering her purse and jacket, Theresa stood up, the chair scraping beneath her.

"That's it Raine?! You seriously dragged me here at the crack of dawn to tell me THAT! You really are obsessed..."

A hurt look overcame Raine as she stared back at her friend, her jaw slightly ajar. Theresa shook her head, picking up her cappuccino and turning to leave.

"Wait!"

Theresa turned around slowly, her face sour and embittered. Crossing her arms across her chest, she gave her friend a look of resentment.

Raine's eyes trailed back down to her now savorless cup of coffee. "I'm askng you as a friend... please help me."

The sound of the chair scraping again caused Raine to glance up, catching a glimpse of her friend returning to the seat across from her. Theresa continued to shake her head as if she disapproved of her actions.

"Raine, I don't mean to be so bitter... but you need to move on. You wrote the book... the publisher liked it... and now you're going to release it. Its time to move on with your life."

Raine nodded, gesturing that she had heard what her friend said... but she hadn't agreed with her. She couldn't release a book inspired by someone who doesn't even have the slightest clue about it. What if he's walking in the store someday and sees it? She'd feel like she was going behind his back, even if they didn't speak anymore.

"I understand that... but I'd feel much better if he knew about it."

Theresa's face finally broke into a smile, but she continued to shake her head disapprovingly. "That's what I like about you Raine... you're so kind-hearted. You're always thinking of everyone else's feelings."

Raine smiled in return, but her face instantly slipped into that troubled frown she had been holding all day. Noticing this, Theresa finally gave into her disapproval.

"So... what do you need me for anyways?"

Raine smiled again, but this time, more sincere. Pushing her dark hair out of her face, she leaned forwards, ready to give her friend the low- down.

~

Raine sighed, pushing through the excited crowds of cheering fans. She pulled her jacket tautly against her shivering body, suddendly wishing she would have disagreed to Steve's offer. But he had begged, as usual, telling her that he really, really needed the support.

Football games weren't really her thing, though. In fact, she couldn't remember one time where she had been to one, or even watched one on T.V. She was totally oblivious to the whole concept. But... she wasn't there to watch the game. She was there to support her friend, as Steve had put it in his many attempts to make her give in. And she had... she was very easy to convince.

Finally taking a seat on the cold, metal bleachers, Raine bundled against her flimsy jacket, a cool chill running down her spine. When she had left the house, the weather had been good enough for a jacket, but as the sun went down, it was getting colder and colder, her breath coming out in white puffs.

The weather was often like that in St. Albans. One minute, snowflakes would be coming down like a blizzard, and the next, the sun would be out, warming the earth and causing the snow to melt. Luckily, today the weather had been perfect for a football game. Warm enough to play, but cool enough to stay comfortable. Unfortunately for the crowd on the stands, that meant warm blankets and numerous cups of hot chocolate.

Raine sighed, feeling a bit lonely. She wished she didn't have to sit alone. It was making the cold that much more unbearable.

Glancing at the pack of blue and yellow football players, she searched for Steve's blonde head. Laying her eyes on someone much more displeasing, she scoffed, turning away.

"Chase..."

"You know... talking about people behind their back is very rude."

Raine flinched at the sound of a screechy voice dripped in sarcasm. Turning around, she laid eyes on a tall, slim brunette woman. She was annoyingly chomping on her bubble-gum like no tomorrow.

Finally recognizing her, Raine's face grew stale. Candy Walters... she hung around Steve and his group. How could she forget that voice?

Candy sat down next to Raine, throwing her umber hair over her shoulder dramatically. "Its Raine... right?"

Raine narrowed her eyes at the know-it-all sound in her voice. What could she possibly want from her?

She laughed like hyena, leaning back to gawk at her flashy artificial nails. "You're the one that Steve likes... that's such a joke..."

Raine shot her a deadly glare, fighting back the urge to punch her in her 'pretty' face. But she remained silent. She wasn't going to waste her time on someone who thinks their frivolous insults are actually hurtful.

She paused, scuffing her hot red nails on her tiny pink jacket. "I mean... its not like you're pretty or anything..."

Raine shook her head, still refusing to listen to her insensible blabbering. Candy leaned towards her, cupping her own face in a gaudy hand.

"And not to mention... you don't speak. What would he want from a pyscho like you?"

Raine finally turned towards the prating girl, clenching her teeth tightly. "What the hell do you want from me Candy?!"

Candy stomped her foot, narrowing her heavily made-up eyes at Raine. "I want you to stay away from things that don't belong to you!"

Raine rolled her eyes, shaking her head. "What could your pea brain possibly be talking about?"

Candy clenched her fists, leaning towards Raine. "You know exactly what I'm talking about..."

Raine imitated her dumbfounded look. "No... I don't."

"Steve was mine way before you came along... now give him up!"

"I don't HAVE him to GIVE up... we're just friends."

Grapsing the collar of her shirt, Candy pulled Raine out of her seat. "Don't you get attitude with me! I'm much greater than you and you know it! I could destroy you reputation in the blink of an eye."

Raine brushed her hand off, pushing the irritating girl away from her. "Go ahead, I'd like to see you try... there's nothing to destroy."

"Fine then, I will."

Watching her stomp away, Raine let out a sigh of relief. Man, she was really getting annoying...

Returning to her seat, Raine realized how many pairs of prying eyes were now set on her. She sent them all a dirty look, causing them to avert their gaze as if they were innocent. Shaking her head, she returned to the game, hoping to finally catch the principle of it all.

~

With St. Alban's in the lead, the game finally ended, causing cheering fans to jump from their seat like lunatics. Raine covered her ears at the shrill sound, ducking away from the delirious crowd as best as she could.

She still hadn't caught the concept of the game, but she had to admit, she had alot of fun pretending she did, at least once she finally got used to the cold. Unfortunately, she didn't know which number Steve was, so she didn't really get the chance to give him 'support' he said he needed.

Making her way out of the stadium, Raine let out a sigh of relief. Football games were fun and all, but the hype was a little too tiring for someone like her. Bundling farther in her jacket, she began making her way down the dark sidewalk. Home was only a few blocks away for her anyways...

"Hey... freak!"

Raine rolled her eyes... Oh, jolly joy, if it isn't Candy Walters... She turned around slowly, her face completely irritated. But she was surpirsed at the sight she saw...

"This is the one I told you about, Jessica..."

There was a whole pack of them! All of them either dressed in fall cheerleading outfits, or hillariously short skirts. Raine chuckled at the sight of them, still continuing to shake her head. They didn't scare her...

A slim, blonde stepped forwards, narrowing her eyes at Raine. She recognized her right away... she was Chase's so called girlfriend, Jessica.

"What is it this time Candy?" Raine rolled her eyes at the group, stuffing her hands in her pocket.

"Shut-up wench!"

Grasping her arm tightly, Jessica forcefully threw Raine against the school wall. Returning her gesture with a death glare, Raine returned to her feet, her fists clenched tightly.

"What the hell's your problem?!"

Pushing her roughly into the wall again, Jessica held a tight grasp on Raine's arms. "You're my problem!"

Easily releasing her grip, Raine pushed the blonde away, rolling her eyes at her. She was picking with the wrong person...

Jessica's eyes widened, her mouth slightly ajar. Motioning for the rest of her pack rats, Jessica resumed the same tight grasp around her arms. Raine tried to pull away again, but this time, about five girls were holding her down, making it almost imppossible for her to move from the shoulders down.

Glaring viciously at Jessica, she still continued to struggle, the school wall delving deeper into her back. "Did you fry your brain with all that peroxide?! Or were you already this deranged?!"

Jessica returned her words with a piercing slap across the face. "Did I ask you to speak?!"

Raine narrowed her eyes, finally giving in. "Just tell me what you want..."

Candy stepped forward, narrowing her eyes at the struggling girl. "I told you what I want... stay away from things that don't belong to you."

"You just told me that an hour ago... what, do you have alzheimer's already?"

Candy seethed, pulling Raine on the ground and jumping on top of her. Raine yelped as she hit the ground, but immediately began punching her viciously. Candy cried out in pain, ducking away to protect herself. Noticing this, Jessica gave Raine a swift kick in her side.

Clutching her side to subside the pain, Raine stood up, face to face with Jessica. "I don't WANT to fight you guys... "

Jessica raised a brow at her minaciously, motioning for her pack rats again. "Girls?"

Exactly on cue, the whole group of seven, maybe eight, girls jumped on Raine all at once. Falling into a pile on the ground, they all immediately began scratching, slapping, and pulling at Raine. She struggled to fight back, but there were too many of them. They were clearly outnumbering her. Hearing a distinct ripping sound, Raine felt a stabbing pain in her shoulder. She quickly clutched her shoulder, pulling off the remnants of her now torn jacket.

Even more savage then she was before, Raine clenched her fists, diving for the first girl she saw. Taking her down, Raine began punching the girl in the face, her anger growing by the second. But just when she thought she was in the lead, she felt them tug at her feet ferociously, dragging her across the ground. Reaching for patches of grass, Raine struggled to pull away, but they continued to drag her, scraping her stomach and elbows against the rocky ground.

Jessica laughed like a hyena, similar to Candy's laughter. "Why do you even try Raine?! You know we outnumber you! You're just tiring yourself out!"

All of them began laughing at her, causing Raine to grit her teeth tighter and tighter. She couldn't stand the sound, it was by far the most painful thing she had ever heard.

A group of girls gathered around her head, reaching down and heaving her upper body off the ground. Now dangling in the air, Raine finally gave up struggling, realizing that it was only making the pain worse. Swinging her back and forth to get leverage, the chuckling girls finally let her body go in mid-air, letting it collide with the brick wall. Raine yelped in pain as her body hit the wall like a rag-doll, falling to the ground inanimately.

Panting languidly, Raine struggled to push her body off the ground, but the pain was too unbearable, causing her to collapse on the ground helplessly. Jessica stepped forwards, lifting Raine's head up with the toe of her shoe.

"Now, tell, me... will you finally give Steve up?"

"I don't understand what your problem is! You can have Steve! We were never together!"

Clenching her teeth tightly, Jessica reached down and grabbed the collar of Raine's torn shirt, pulling her off the ground. "You never seem to give up do you!"

Raine shut her eyes tightly, readying herself for a slap in the face. But instead... she heard Jessica yelp, releasing her grip on Raine.

"Leave her alone Jessie! What's your problem?!"

Raine recognized his voice right away, but disbelievingly, she took a double take, making sure it was really him.

"Chase! Honey, how was your game?"

He glared back at the blonde, tightening his grip on her arm. "Get out of here! I don't want to see you around her ever again!"

Jessica nodded, turning away quickly and stumbling out of sight. Her friends followed her every move, dashing away as fast as they could. Once they were finally out of sight, Chase kneeled before Raine, pulling her dark hair out of her face.

"Are you okay?"

She glanced up at him, her cheeks glowing a slight shade of pink. He smiled at her, helping her to her feet. She stumbled backwards into his chest, losing consciousness briefly.

He wrapped his arms around her, keeping her from falling. "Hey... don't leave me now."

She shook her head to rid of the black spots forming on her eyes, but continued to stay in his warm embrace.

He eyed the swelling bruise on her cheek. "They really got you there, didn't they? You mind if I check your injuries?"

She stared up at him wide-eyed, unaware of what to do or say. Chase had actually saved her? He was actually helping her?! She was beginning to think she had passed out...

Setting her down on the ground, Chase leaned Raine's back against the school wall gingerly, leaning in to study her injuries. Their proximity was causing Raine's heart to beat faster and faster, her mind racing.

Raine's injuries were pretty bad, Chase noticed, but nothing too vital. She had a long slash across her cheek, her shirt was practically torn off, revealing some things she probably wouldn't want him to see, and she had major scrapes and abrasion on her stomach and elbows. From what he could see, she was taking it very well.

"You're probably going to be okay, but I'd go home and wash off the bloody areas on your stomach and cheek. You wouldn't want to get an infection."

She stared back into his emerald eyes, her mouth slughty ajar. She knew the pain was there, but she couldn't feel it... he was too close. The proximity between them was making her body surge.

Backing away a little, he stared back into her stunning mismatched eyes. "Are you able to speak? Or did they take that from you as well..."

"I... they... why..."

"Ah... there it is. I knew you had a voice somewhere in there."

The pain finally catching up to her, Raine let out a shrill cry, hurling over to clutch her throbbing stomach. Chase reached over, keeping her body stable, her head resting against his chest.

"Shh... you're gonna be okay."

Raine bit her lip, trying to focus on something beside the pain. Fortunately, her head resting against his warm chest was enough to keep her from crying out again.

"Chase... why..."

"I don't know why they were attacking you like that. They can be hostile, but I've never seen jealousy get to them like that."

She shook her head, burying her face in the crook in his neck. Taking in his manly scent, she sighed. "No... why... did you help me?"

Releasing his grip on her, he backed away, resting her back on the wall again. He stared back at her, searching for something to say.

"I... I mean, I couldn't let em kill you... she IS my girlfriend."

Raine wrapped her arms around her shivering body, suddendly wishing she hadn't said anything. "I thought you hated me... those things you said were really harsh..."

"I don't hate you... I just... can't be around you."

Raine's eyes fell to the ground, her lips beginning to quiver. "Why?... I don't understand... that's why had said that comment to you."

"I just... I mean... you're the only one who knows so much about me... and its weird for me. Its not that I don't trust you... I-I don't kow."

Raine struggled to move closer to him, the pain continuing to surge through her body. "But Chase... I don't know anything about you."

He shook his head, his eyes trailing to the ground. "Y-yes... you do. You know more than you think."

Finally reaching the position she was struggling for, Raine reached out and touched Chase's cheek gently. "The only thing I know is that you're hiding something..."

He shook his head, placing his hand on hers and returning it to her side. "You make it sound so simple... you don't understand."

Raine pulled her trembling body into a ball, moving closer to Chase. "No... I don't understand... but tell, me... why would you hide something so wonderful like your artistic talent?"

"Because that's not what I want to be."

She gave him an earnest look. "It's what you should be."

He stood up abruptly. "Quit saying things like that! You make it sound so damn easy! My life is so much different than that!"

Standing up as well, Raine ignored the pain, tilting her head to look up at him. "I know that! Why else would you be attacking Phillip in dark alleys?" She paused, narrowing her eyes slightly. "I'm not here to judge you, Chase. You've got to understand that."

He was silent for a few moments, his face pressed into an angry frown. "How can I trust you..."

She stepped back, gesturing to her injuries. "Look at me, Chase... really look at me... what do you see?"

Slipping into a solemn silence, he stared back at her, stuffing his hands in his pockets. He knew what he saw... he saw a beautiful, courageous woman, one who wasn't ashamed of who she was... someone who he should be looking up to. But he couldn't tell her that...

Raine stepped forwards again, staring soulfully into Chase's eyes. "Chase... I get pushed around just like you... there will always be someone who doesn't accept you... you've got to learn to accept that, whether you like it or not."

He shook his head. "No-"

Raine cut him off gently. "I don't understand... right?"

He continued to shake his head, letting his eyes trail to the ground. She was always doing that to him... stuffing his head with optimistic ideas with just a simple glance or smile.

He stepped away from her. "Raine, you can continue to live in your world... while I live in mine... so quit pretending that you really know what its like, because you don't."

"You're never gonna make it like this... you're going to wear yourself out always hiding away."

Suddendly getting angry, Chase clenched his fits tightly, griting his teeth. "NO! I'm not!"

She gave him a soft look. "I'm just trying to help you."

"Well, its not helping!"

Swiftly turning on his heel, he began stomping away in the opposite direction, cursing under his breath. She watched him running away as usual, suddendly beginning to feel sorry for his cowering soul.

Throwing his head over his shoulder, he glared at her one last time. "And if you ever tell anyone everything you know... you're going to regret it."

Watching his structure disappear into the darkness, Raine shook her head. She wasn't angry at him for what he had said to her, she knew it was in spite of himself. As much as she hated to admit it, she was right. He would eventually break one of these days, and he'd never be able to return to happiness. She still hadn't known what he was hiding, but she knew that whatever it was, it was litterally killing him to hide it.

Raine glanced down at her injured body, the pain finally going numb due to the cold temperature. Wrapping her arms around herself, she began making her way down the same sidewalk she had been on before Jessica and her pack rats had attacked her.

What a fool, she thought, did they really think they put fear in her eyes? They were so pitiful... She might have been hurt on the outside, but they could never bring her down on the inside. She would never become hostage to another human being...

Kicking an alluminum can angrily, Raine shook her head, thoughts of Chase entering her troubled mind. He was so damn confusing... one second he was the arrogant asshole she always thought he was, and the next, he was a totally different person... one who was sensitive, delicate, and beautiful. But eventually that side of him would die away... and he'd just become another victim of the inane, selfish society us human beings had built up with our insecurities...

Something she'd never, ever want to see...

- -

Ooo... So sorry its kinda of a short chapter, but... alot happens, no? Anyways, I hope you liked it... and if things still seem confusing... don't worry they will eventually uncover themselves.

THANK YOU REVIEWERS! I LOVE YOU ALL!

Escaflowne- Ooo, I loved your review! You seem to know exactly where I'm going with this story, and you're picking up on all the little hints. THANK YOU for saying my work is excellent! That makes me feel very good!

FamousOneLiners- Thank you for the review, I'm glad you like it!

WildGoddess- You really think this is beautifully written? Aww, thank you so much! I'm glad you like how I gave all my characters a certain personality that matched that plot and their actions.

Writer-who-loves-to-sing- Love your name... Anyways, don't you just hate it when you're rudely intterupted, especially like when the computer freezes and stuff... so annoying... I'm glad you came back to it, though! THANK YOU!

Frayed Galliano- I've saved the best for last... no just kidding. But you really are one of my favorite reviewers! Anyways, I hope you really didn't die waiting... that would be touching, but then you wouldn't get to finish your amazing story! Oh, god that was corny... please excuse me... (runs off the slam her head in the door) XD lol... this is what happens when you have too many shots of god knows what in one night... very dangerous to your brain... Anyways, thanks for reviewing.