|Volume||Into the Forest|
|Starts||June 9, 2014 (22:12:59)|
|Ends||June 12, 2014 (04:07:06)|
|Previous chapter||The Loyal Hawaiian|
|Next chapter||My Love|
Chapter Quote Edit
"...to think dark thoughts, and be dark things." - theapplepielifestyle
The chapter opens up on Monday, June 9, 2014 at 22:12:59 in Los Angeles, California. Xanther remembers something Dov once said to her: "fear's the only way we remember pain." A Narcon comments, saying that Dov never said that. Another Narcon comments, saying that Dov did say that, but not to her. She remembers back to Friday (June 6) - it was her last day of school. Through the entire school day, she was paranoid about running into Dendish or any of his friends. She eventually found out that Dendish was expelled from the school because of the locker incident. Xanther knows that Dendish has done much worse in the past, but up until that day, he had never been caught or accused of anything. Kle had praised him for the locker incident and wondered how he managed to do it. The principal of the school, Principal Sanchez, was not going to make Dendish redo the grade. He will be moving onto high school and Xanther is sure she will never have to see him again. One Narcon then comments, "never?" and another comments, "never never existed."
The idea that Xanther herself was somehow responsible for the lockers flying open has been stuck in her mind. She also thinks about the cages at the shelter that flew open by themselves. She decided to spend the weekend playing video games. She even played Paradise Open for a while, which seemed to be working fine now. When the game starts running, the Narcons comment again, saying that "we are always run." The only glitch that was still occurring was that the predator was still not spawning in, which frustrated Anwar. Anwar then decided to show Xanther Cataplyst-2, but she was only confused by it.
On Sunday night, Xanther was brushing her teeth in the bathroom. She had decided to finally look at her reflection, which she was avoiding doing ever since she first started seeing stones in people's eyes. She was immediately disturbed by the sight, so she looked away in less than two seconds. When she wonders if her eyes were even there, one of the Narcons makes another comment, saying "one blush, one light brown, both with these like sparks, or flaws?, of yellow and green. Same old same old. Around the edge of each iris a ring that almost looks black. Maybe that's where she gets this idea of rocks," to which another Narcon comments, "if only..."
On Monday (June 9) all of Xanther's friends came over to her house. They all sat in the den and played video games through the afternoon. Astair made popcorn for them and later Anwar cooked dinner for everyone. Kle wanted to play Grand Theft Auto V, which Anwar owns, but he did not allow them to play it. Anwar thinks that among all of Xanther's friends, Kle is the biggest challenge for him. Kle always greets Anwar with, "Mr. Ibrahim" and Anwar always responds with "Farrokh." One Narcon comments that the readers will learn more about the "Farrokh" story later. Another Narcon seems confused and comments, "how am I hearing 'hear later'?" as if responding to the previous Narcon's comment.
As Xanther and her friends continue gaming, she notices how much better at playing video games she has become recently. Cogs and Josh are overall the best gamers in their group. They are usually able to easily beat Kle in whatever game they are playing. Mayumi is able to "surprise everyone" every now and then, but Xanther never surprised anyone until today. Later on, Josh's parents arrive to pick him, Mayumi, and Kle up. Xanther asks them to visit her again soon. She and Cogs then take turns playing Limbo. When Anwar comes in to check on them, he says that the game is a tough one and he has not beaten it yet. Cogs admits he gave up so Xanther is currently playing. This is Xanther's first time playing the game but she has already beaten it three times. Xanther asks Cogs not to tell her parents because she thinks it would be fun to keep a secret from them. This is something she is not used to doing.
When Xanther's other friends were still at the house with her, Mayumi was the first to spot the cat. She called it a kitten, but Xanther corrected her by saying the cat is actually quite elderly. Cogs and Kle were confused about that. Josh was still disappointed over the fact that Xanther never got her dog. Kle wondered why the cat never opened its eyes and Xanther was unable to offer an answer.
Xanther and Cogs take a break from gaming so she can feed the cat. She demonstrates to Cogs the proper way to feed the cat. Afterwards, Astair walks him out to her car so she can drive him home. On his way out, Cogs tells Xanther, "I hate to say this, but uh, I don't think he's eating." Xanther is panicked by this, but she is also impressed with how perceptive Cogs is. She fears that the cat could end up starving to death, though.
On Tuesday, Astair takes Xanther with her to various shops. On Wednesday, she and Xanther go hiking. Xanther becomes increasingly angry, insisting she bring the cat with her. Astair refuses to allow this. After the hike, Xanther receives texts from Josh and Kle, who ask her if she wants to go with them to a concert. Josh's brother Teig will be photographing the band and he is allowed to add whoever he wants to the guest list. Both Astair and Anwar urge Xanther to go, but Xanther tells them all that she is feeling unwell. She is actually feeling better than ever. She ends up regretting her decision when Josh and Kle text their disappointment. She is still worried about the possibility of the cat starving to death. She continues to try to feed it but it still refuses to eat.
Some time after midnight, Xanther sees that the cat has suddenly vanished. She searches on her bed, around her room, and all around downstairs but she is unable to find it. She sees that the front door has been left open again. She decides to run outside. She stops in the middle of the street to look around some more. She faces a long line of street lamps, and she sees headlights. A truck is quickly accelerating towards her.
The chapter ends on Thursday, June 12, 2014 at 04:07:06.