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Pen Your Pride

Chapter 21

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So this picture is from the graphic novel for Maximum Ride. This is all of the Flock except for Angel and Total (the flying, talking dog). From left to right is: Iggy (not facing the right way, as usual. Ahaha), Gasman, Max (being motherly Max), Nudge and Fang.

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When they arrived at Lake Mead the next day, Max and Fang were waiting in their usual spot. Iggy landed and sat Jenn down, waiting for Max's reprimanding; he hadn't told her that he was bringing Jenn and he was worried about how Max might receive her.

"So you guys must be Max and Fang," Jenn said, stepping forward to shake their hands. "Iggy talks fondly about you guys. All of you, really," she smiled big. "I'm Jenn."

"I'm sorry to say that Iggy hasn't told us anything about you," Max said bitterly, refusing to shake her hand. Iggy could feel her burning a hole into his skull. Jenn fell back slightly, but she didn't let her smile fall.

"Sure I have. This is the girl I met at the library. I've told you guys about her," Iggy said, stepping up and taking Jenn's hand.

"Oh yeah, the art student, right?" Fang said calmly. Iggy was silently thanking God for Fang.

"See. I have mentioned her, Max." Iggy pointlessly looked around, "So where are the others?"

"Well-" Max started, but she was cut off by a squeal from above.

"Iggy!" Suddenly, Iggy was tackled to the ground with someone hugging him. "Iggy, I've missed you!"

"Hey, Nudge," Iggy laughed, patting her back. "I've missed you, too."

"Oh my gosh!" Nudge exclaimed, finally noticing Jenn. She jumped up, but Iggy didn't get up, he just stayed there, uncomfortably, on his back with a hand resting across his stomach. "Are you Iggy's girlfriend?"

Iggy could feel Max tense up even more and he waited for Jenn's response.

"Well, he hasn't asked me properly," Jenn joked. "So I guess the whole title isn't official but I mean, we hang out a lot and-"

"Have you kissed him?!" Nudge asked, leaning in excitedly, but before Jenn could answer, both Max and Iggy yelled at Nudge.

Jenn looked over at Fang and he smirked. She walked over to Iggy, still on the ground, and kicked the bottom of his foot, laughing at Nudge's excitement.

"You weren't lying."

"Nope."

"Lying about what? Oh! Has he told you about me?!"

"Yes actually, he-" Max cleared her throat and both Jenn and Nudge looked over at her with wide eyes. "I'll tell you later," Jenn whispered, leaning over to Nudge but keeping her eyes on Max.

Nudge squealed again, jumping up and down. "This is gonna be so great! Oh my gosh! This is gonna be so great! I'm gonna get to see Iggy from a different point of view!" Nudge walked over to the cliff as she talked and took off. Max followed, not missing her chance to glare at Jenn on her way by. Fang walked past Iggy who was now standing and put a hand on his shoulder.

"She'll come around. It's Max." Iggy nodded and Fang took off, too.

Jenn was mesmerized by their wings and didn't notice Iggy holding his hand out at first. She looked over at him then down at his hand.

"Oh! No..." she said, taking a step back and shoving her hands in her pockets. "You go on and bond with your Flock." He didn't say anything, but he didn't take his hand down, either. She stepped forward and giggled, gently punching his shoulder. "I'll be okay, I promise. I just want to watch."

He suddenly pulled her into a tight hug. "I love you," he whispered, almost inaudible.

"I love you too," she said, returning his volume. "Now go," she giggled, pushing him away. "They're waiting for you." She looked up to see that two more bird people and a flying dog had joined them. Iggy kissed her cheek and took off, his wings messing up her hair. She laughed as she pulled it out of her face and looked up at the Flock flying in perfect formation. She walked over to the edge of the cliff and sat down, letting her feet dangle off the edge. She just couldn't get enough of their wings. It was truly a spectacular sight; almost as beautiful as the stars on a clear night. A couple hawks had joined the Flock and Jenn's smile got bigger. If that was even possible.

"Their wings are so beautiful," Jenn whispered to herself. "I wish I had wings..."

"Well, hello, there." Jenn jumped and turned to see two Hispanic women walking out of the cave behind her; one was visibly older and Jenn figured she was the mother. "Who are you?"

"Oh, I'm Jenn. Iggy brought me along. We met in New York." Jenn noticed that the younger girl seemed to look sad for a second, but then she smiled again.

"I'm Dr. Martinez," the older woman said. "I'm Max's mom. And this is Ella, her half-sister."

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