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CHAPTER FOUR

Three Months Earlier...

Isn't it weird how we all feel a little bit strange sometimes? How our worlds just seem to stop revolving and our lives seem to stop still? Isn't it odd how we become numb to the pain, and how our tortured thoughts just seem to fade away into a mindless oblivion because we have made or dreamed of something that is perfect?

That is how I feel right now. Oblivious to the pain. I know I should be feeling it, but I feel fine. I feel as though I could take anything life throws at me, because I've been throught the worst of it. Everything is all in the distance now, like some far away mountain that one can only dream of climbing, like some tiny tree on a hill that's so far away. It's all behind me. I can move on. All the bad things that have happened to me have faded into the background now, have melted into nothingness.

Because of her. Only her.

Have you ever looked at somebody for so long that their face begins to change? Begins to mould itself into something other than what you have grown to know? It used to happen to me when I was a child. I would look at a face, watching me in the dark, it would become the vision of my nightmares. Right before my eyes, it would metamorphosise into a demon, its face becoming black and its eyes becoming non existent. I would cry, and they wouldn't know why. I would scream, and they couldn't come near me.

With Ellie, it is different.

I look across the room from my chair, and I see her face change before me. Her eyes, which had before seemed so lifeless and so tired, become alive. They sparkle in the abstract moonlight that is the light, glistening in their gentle chestnut brown way. Her mouth, which had been so dead and so dormant, becomes a depiction of beauty as it opens up into a wide, loving smile. Her face, which had been so sad, lights up as though she were dancing.

'When we dance, angels would run and hide their wings.....'

Something inside me makes an astounded realisation, one which makes my broken heart suddenly fuse, its tiny pieces blending together as if by some miracle cure. This happens when I realise that she is smiling at me. It is I who made her face change, not like my mother's, but into something good. It is I who made her come to life. This dream is something which will keep me going...if only for awhile.

I look around the room, and I see for the first time where I am. The walls are ivory, shining from beneath a diamond chandalier in the middle of the intricately designed celing. Tiny cherubs smile at us from all around, built into the decor in a renaissance painting kind of beauty. Gone are the blue walls of my prison, and all that is left is this beauty.

Only in a painting could something look so perfect. Candles burn all around, forming a circle of light that only my imagination can see, reflecting on the silken curls that fall about her shoulders. Still she smiles. Her dress is burgundy satin, expensive and beautiful to touch. She is as beautiful to touch as she is beautiful. She is perfect.

I take her in my arms, and the music begins to play. Softly at first, it fades into the background. Nothing will distract me from her serene face, not even the sound of angels singing. Choirs of innocents cannot take my eyes away from her.

'When we dance, angels would run and hide their wings...'

We dance in circles, becoming figures in a wind-up musical box, spinning forever entwined in each other's arms. Blue petals fall upon our heads, mirroring the ornamental snowstorm I brough her for her birthday. I know she keeps it next to her bed. If I listen carefully, I think the music is the same......

I don't want to wake up anymore. I want to stay like this forever until the stars, like the petals from the bed that fell, fall down on me. I want to dance forever in this sleeping Heaven, where nothing can hurt me again. I want to hold her in my arms always, keep her safe and warm.
'Hellfire's a promise, I'll be saying I'll still love you...' No matter what happens in my life, no matter how bad it gets, I know she's still there. I could go to Hell and still I'd feel her beside me. Do I love her?

I think.....I feel.......I know! I remember....

Brian's dreams were all that kept him alive, now,


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Present day

"Guys, we need to call another press conference. The media has gotten wind of all the evidence that's been coming to us. They are having a field day with it, and we have to set the record straight. Have you seen the front page today?"

Nick was in uproar. How dare the newspapers play with them like this? The Local News had the headline 'Backstreet Boy Blunder?', underneath being a picture of Brian. It accused him of being deep in debt from a gambling problem, and the abduction some giant scale cover-up to get him out of trouble.

"How pathetic are they? They know how much Rok is worth. Why would he go to so much trouble to make himself vanish without a trace when it would take him decaded to run up this kind of tab..."

They were getting used to this garbage being printed. The media did anything they could to sell a story, didn't care how bad they made things.

"Look at this one", Howie offered. The News of the World, U.K. "Scorned lover's revenge scheme".... Kevin looked up from the newspaper he had been reading. "What's it say?"

Howie cleared his throat.

"An acquaintance of Ellie Day, Brian Littrell's most recent girlfriend, has sold her story to Hello magazine for a sum thought to be around 135,000. She states that Littrell may have dreamed up the whole kidnapping plot in order to silence his ex-girlfriend after their violent break-up. She had been threatening to sell her story to tabloids unless he paid her a fee of $5,000,000 to stay quiet." Kevin frowned. "Violent break-up?"


...........................................................................................................................

He counted the stars on the ceiling again. They were all fading fast. He didn't know if it was his eyes, or if someone was taking his stars away, but he couldn't bear to be without them. He loved his tiny little stars, and they loved him. They were the only ones who loved him. They showed him the meaning of being lonely. They showed him that loneliness was tragical. He didn't know where his thoughts came from, but they were nice thoughts.

He saw blue eyes when he slept. Denim-blue eyes, full of sincerity and warmth and love. He loved seeing those eyes. They comforted him. He knew that as long as those eyes, and the brown eyes and the other blue eyes, were looking for him somewhere, he'd never die. He'd never be alone.

He wondered where she was. If she was all he had been allowed to remember, why wasnt she here with him? Why was she forsaking him?


................................................................................................................................ Kevin looked at the clues that he knew of. 'Forget', written in block letters, once in blood and once in simple marker. The flowers, proven to be 'forget-me-nots', falling gently to the floor. The word, written on mirrors.

What could it mean?

There had been phonecalls. He remembered one vividly. It had been received a month after the flowers and the broken mirror. Was this person trying their hardest to keep them guessing? Were they hoping that Brian would be forgotten?

"Hello? It's...Brian. I don't know where I am. Please help me...please."

The voice seemed so...different. It had been AJ who had picked up. As soon as Kevin had seen the tears falling from AJs eyes, he had known. He took the phone from him and spoke as softly as possible.

"Brian, it's me. Kevin. It's me, buddy..."

He'd been taken aback by the reply.

"Are you the one with the blonde hair, or the one with the dark? Please...help me..."

Brian did not remember him. He had known him all of his life, and he didn't even remember who he was. The sound of his cousin, sounding tiny and almost mindless, had driven him over the edge.

"Brian, I want to talk to the person who is holding you, ok?"

Brian had lost it.

"NO! You talk to me, you don't leave me...you talk to me!"

And then the line had gone dead.It hadn't been traced. The call wasn't long enough. Again, they had nothing.

What was there that he just couldn't see?

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