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CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO 
MY FRIEND IS SUCH A GOOD INFLUENCE
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It was so funny how I liked to tempt Fate.

To jinx my destiny...

Because at around 12:00 AM a sound woke me up from my sleep. And as I forced my stupid butt out of bed, I treaded across my cold wooden floors as silently as I could to my bedroom window. A shoe in my left hand for a weapon as I approached the frsoty window. I lifted the shoe, but the sound came again.

Something hit the window.

Something like a stone.

It hit the window for the third time before I got fed up adn opened up the window and pushed aside the curtains. Peering into the night, I looked out in surprise and then in horror as I saw a hooded figure standing on the sidewalk directly across the street from my house, staring up at me.

As the figure lifted its hand for me to see and motioned for me to come down, I fully accepted that whatever sh*t I got myself into was my fault.

And then some.

Seeing the figure outside my window was enough to make he shiver. When it motioned for me to come down by curling its finger, I shook my head no and began to lock the windows and draw the curtains. But my progress was halted when I saw the figure's hand drop by its side and it began to cross the street.

"No, no, no, no, no!" I shook my head frantically and shoved open the window, poking my head into the chilling night. My cheeks burned from the frigid air but I managed to speak low enough to distract myself, "Stop, wait!" The figure stopped. "I--I'll come down..." Quickly glancing up I checked if the full moon was out, but only saw grey illuminescent clouds hanging lazily in the sky.

I sighed and closed my window with a creak. Shutting the latch and shutting the curtains closed so the sight of the dark lone figure disappeared behind cloth. I clutched my chest and noted how my heart hammered inside. "Okay, okay... It's going to be okay..." 

Frantically-- and as quietly as I could-- my bare feet padded across the wooden floors of my room as I went from the closet to my chest as the side of my bed, before kneeling to look under my bed. "Ahhh... There it is." I breathed out a sigh of relief, flitting away a dust-bunny, and pulled out my old moldy wooden bat. Water-logged and cold, its black leather grip still felt comforting even after all those years I stopped playing baseball.

I tied my hair up and put on a longer pair of pink shorts I scooped up from off the ground. I grabbed my cellphone, pocketed a few quid and spare shillings laying around on my dresser and hoisted my bat over my shoulder. I almost left my baseball hat that read: "Bugger off ya Duffer!" But then decided, 'why not?'. 

Placing it over my head, pulling my blonde ponytail through I opened my door and stared down the dark corridor. Nothing stirred. I could hear the faint snoring of my dad from his room. His door was wide open and I could see his feet hanging off the side of his bed-- God knows how my mother could sleep with that man...

"Yep... out cold." I nodded to myself and then quickly shuffled down the hallway and snuck down the stairs. When I had reached the front door, I took one final look back, fiddled with my jacket zipper and then opened the door. The air was freezing cold, and I braced it. The cold enveloped me as I locked the door beind me. 

The figure was again on the other side of the street. It stared at me and I gulped. I knew that if it was Gabriel, all I needed to do was scream and wake up the neighborhood. Ben-- Mr. Clarke had mentioned the police when he dropped me home after the whole fiasco at his house. I blushed at the memory as each step brought me closer to the lanky figure. The deep blue hoodie nearly making memeld with the night.

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