27; Warrior In the Midst

The four teens were immersed in troubling silence. Anxiety and confusion swarmed their minds and clouded their better judgment.

Every now and then the four allies would sneak a peek at one another and then turn away before their eyes could meet. The air was so thick with tension it could snap and if it didn't, El thought she might.

Her entire being was brittle with overwhelming nerves. She wanted to turn to Isaac and find some consolation in her best friend but the anger she still had with him simmered in the back of her mind.

Now wasn't the time to be childish and stubborn but she couldn't help it even if she tried. She could never swallow her pride and that was one trait the entire Paxton family shared. Paul was the biggest example of that.

She was being neither brave or smart by running into a war zone without a means to protect herself. She had created this fantasy in her mind that entailed all of them: Allison, Isaac, Lydia, Stiles, Kira, Scott, and herself going home safe and alive.

El was no banshee but the feeling in her gut told her everything was not going to be alright. All the false reassurances she told herself did little to remedy her restlessness.

But she was right to be afraid. It wasn't every day the monsters you feared were hiding under your bed came out to play.

"Are you okay?" Stiles asked catching Scott staring at him. Scott hurriedly looked away as if he hadn't been glaring down his friend at all.

"Yeah," he assured speaking for the first time since they'd left his house, "you don't have to worry about me."

El watched the exchange and saw the worried crease lines on the alphas face. Her heart ached to see him so distressed. Everyone was so focused on Stiles and Lydia that no one bothered to see how Scott was holding up. The lives of two of his closest friends hung in the balance and the pressure he must feel to save them had to be overwhelming.

She could do nothing to ease his worry and it irked her beyond words.

"Alright, I'm gonna say it," Isaac suddenly blurted and El could imagine the annoyed look forming on Stiles's face.

"You look like you're dying." Scott whipped around and gave him an incredulous look but he didn't stop there. "You're pale and you're thin-"

"And irritable," El pitched in comically, forgetting for a moment that she was upset with Isaac. She resumed her frown and crossed her arms tighter over her chest.

"And you look like you're getting worse," Isaac continued moving his gaze from El back to Stiles, "we're all sitting here thinking it. When we find the other you is he gonna look like he's getting better?"

El was mildly curious but Stiles said nothing to quench her curiosity. He didn't seem to be too concerned about what he and the other him looked like. He was too focused on the girl who had a permanent place in his mind and heart.

"What happens if he gets hurt?" Scott inquired in a soft voice.

"What do you mean? Like if he dies, do I die?" Stiles shrugged, "I don't care. So long as no one dies because of me. I remember everything I did Scott. I remember pushing that sword into you. I remember twisting it,"

The visual caused goose bumps to rise across her skin. She didn't remember being told about that little occurrence but then again she was in the dark about most things. Maybe she didn't need to know, but it would have been nice if they would have at least mentioned it to her. It only proved she wasn't as close to the pack as she hoped to be.

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