Episode 1: Hypothesis [Part One]

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Warren remembered it like it was yesterday.
He was in town shopping with his mother- a couple weeks before enrolling for Blackwell Academy at the young age of sixteen- when it happened.
The worst moment of his short life.
It happened so quickly, yet lingered in his mind for such a long time.
The loud bang ringing his ears, as he watched the bullet fly through his mothers skull.
The light in her eyes fading and becoming empty.
She was lifeless.
He watched his mother die- her blood splattered on his face as he drops to the floor.
Two arms grasping him and shaking him.
He could barely hear anything, but only made out a harsh female voice call out for help.
"Help him, you assholes! He just watched someone he loved die!"
Voices became clear as he looked towards the girl who sat beside him.
A girl with electric blue dyed hair and a horrified expression.
Feeling himself go heavy, he collapsed- watching everything fade to black.

Until he woke up in his bed, covered in sweat.

Warren flailed his arm in terror, knocking over a half full cup of cold tea over, spilling it on the carpet.
"Crap." He mumbled. "That'll come out of my deposit." His breathing shaky.
Right now, a dampened and tea stained carpet was the least of his problems. He had this reoccurring dream for a good two months.
Except the dream wasn't exactly a dream; it was a replay of a memory.
His mother had died two months before from a drive-by shooting, alongside three other people. Thanks to a girl called Chloe Price, he managed to get out of there before he was shot too.
He owed Chloe to two things:
Number one being for saving him that day.
Number two?
Max Caulfield.
Thanks to Chloe, he managed to meet someone as nerdy as him, who had the same humour and who he could generally feel comfortable around.
In his opinion, he saw Max as his soulmate.
Although he was certain that she never felt the same.
He hopelessly fell in love with Max within the first month of knowing her, much to Chloe's amusement.
However she did have her sympathetic and supportive moments. As much as Chloe went to reassure Warren that Max was pretty fond of him and that he could stand a chance, he was never convinced.
Warren was awkward- and in his opinion, not in a "good way".
He had never asked a girl out ever, let alone had a relationship with one. He went so long with not bothering with romance that he was painfully inexperienced.
However Warren was surprised and extremely elated to have Max as someone happy to be his friend, let alone anything else.
Despite his feelings, though, he didn't want to seem overbearing and too obvious and awkward around her, so he just stayed his friendly self.
Warren sat up and gazed at the wall clock opposite the bed, right above his cork board full of hectic science notes and theories.
7:15am.
Good. Not too early but not too late.
Warren settled his feet on the ground; his face scrunched up in disgust.
He almost forgot the wet carpet.
"Gross!" He shrieked, leaping away from the patch and rubbing his damp soles on the dry carpet fibres.
His frantic foot drying was interrupted by a heavy knock on the door.
"Who is it?" Warren called out in response.
"Hey, Graham! It's Commander Chloe here, and I'm hella fuckin' bored of this shit pit of a town!" A voice announced at the other side of the door. She opened it and peered inside his room, her blue eyes locking onto her target for mockery. "Also, news incoming, your girlfriend is making her way down to the boys' dorm any minute now so ya' gotta get that boney ass looking sexy for her!" She teased, winking excessively.
"She's not my girlfriend!" Warren sighed.
"You wish though."
"Yeah."
"Chin up, buddy."
"I need a shower." Warren made his way to the door, clean clothes in his arm. He looked at Chloe and gestured to the inside of his room. "Make yourself at home. Tell the same to Max when she comes."
Chloe let out a chuckle and launched herself on his bed. "No problem! I'll keep the bed warm for you both!"
"Hey! How would you like it if I kept saying those things about Rac-"
"Hey! Shut it!" Chloe retorted. "I'm the only one allowed to tease!" She lay down on the bed. "Shower, stinky, you don't want Maximus Cauliflower smelling you from a mile away."
"Sure!" And with that, Warren walked to the shower rooms.
The shower head spewed out water that was slightly too hot for the human skin to handle, but that was how Warren liked it. The soap lathered away the stresses from the dream that he had previously- even though he was aware they would return that night anyway.
After some vigorous washing and rinsing rituals, he was finished. He dried and dressed in the cubicle, about to step out, when he heard a voice.
It sounded strained and mildly distressed.
"Yes, mom... I promise I'll actually go to therapy this week. I'm gonna be serious about my treatments for now on and I'm gonna take the new medicines he's prescribed me.... Is dad disappointed in me?... I'm sorry, I just never know whether I'm considered a valid member of society to him... I love you too, mom. Miss you. Bye."
Warren peered through the curtain. Nathan Prescott... For once being gentle and tame.
Warren often was the butt of Nathan's cruel jokes and often his narcissistic and aggressive nature would get them into some roughhousing from time to time- more often than not leaving Warren as the loser.
However seeing Nathan in such an unusual state confused him. Typically, a kid would take advantage of his enemy's newfound weakness, but naturally- out of kindness- Warren didn't have the heart.
'It's his business...' Warren acknowledged, thinking hard. "I best not intervene... His business is his and mine is mine."
Warren waited until Nathan had long left the shower room, before leaving the  room himself, and approaching his own room.
He walked inside, to see only Chloe sitting on the bed.
"Has Max not come here, yet?" Warren asked.
Before he could focus on a reply from Chloe, a pair of fairly small hands cupped his eyes, startling him.
"Guess who!" A familiar voice laughed.
"Max!"
"Well done, Mister Wizard! You guessed correctly." Max praised, in an over-exaggerated comedic voice. She wandered into his view and grinned. "Wait! Stay like that!" She ordered, pulling her yellow polaroid camera out of her bag. "Hold it.... And..."
The Polaroid camera flashed brightly.
"Perfect!" She grinned as the instant print photograph began to develop. "Have a look at this!"
"No way! My hair actually looks like that?!" Warren cried out. He smoothed it out frantically. "It's standing up on ends."
"Sucks to be you!" Chloe laughed, taking another look at the picture before handing it back to Max.
Max opened a section of her bag and slipped the photograph inside.
"You're keeping it?" Warren asked, mildly embarrassed and a little stunned.
Without missing a beat, Max nodded in all seriousness. "Yeah. I think it's a great artistic example of early mornings captured; a frame of pureness."
"Wow, careful! You'll end up sounding like Jefferson." Warren teased. "He's your inspiration, after all."
"Shut up, you!" Max laughed.
"By a 'frame of pureness', she means that it's cute." Chloe said out loud, deadpan.
"CHLOE!" Max whined, as Warren blushed a furious colour of red.
"What?! Come on! Admit it..."
"Ok, maybe it's quite cute." Max admitted.
"T-thank you..." Warren stuttered.
The open door was knocked on. A girl with auburn hair stood in the doorway with a feather earring and light coloured eyes.
Rachel Amber.
"Hanging with the nerdy bunch, Chloe?" She laughed.
Chloe nodded and stood up. "Yeah! They're cool kids, and I'm a closet nerdy detective, myself, so I fit in pretty well!"
"They are pretty chill, not gonna deny it." Rachel smiled calmly. "Hello, by the way!"
"Hello Rachel." Max smiled politely, standing closely to Warren, who gave a polite hello, himself.
"They're hardly tough, rebellious people though." Rachel pointed out. "Too polite!"
"Yeah, true." Chloe nodded, pulling on both Max and Warren's shoulders. "Neither of them have held a gun in their lives... Although..." She looked at Warren and tapped his back comfortingly. "It might take this one a while to be comfortable..."
Rachel nodded understandably. "He's the kid that had his mom get shot in the head right in front of him from that shooting right?"
Slightly stunned at her blunt response, Warren could only nod.
"Sorry... That was a little too uncalled for for me to mention like that."
"Apology accepted!" Warren told Rachel. "You could mention it in the most delicate way possible and I still wouldn't be able to ignore what I saw in front of me, so honestly I'm okay. I find the less sugar coated responses easier to take in."
"That's okay then... Not your mother dying but, how you're handling it!"
"Yeah."
Chloe nodded and looked at Rachel. "Fancy skipping a bit of school?"
"Yeah!" Rachel agreed.
Chloe turned to Max and Warren. "I'm guessing you two would prefer class today?"
"Yeah, I kinda want to live though this semester." Max laughed.
"Thought so! See you two later!" And with that, she wandered off, alongside Rachel.
Max sighed. "Chloe's always had that independent rebellious streak about her. I'm glad she has Rachel, cause I'm terrible at those things."
"But if she needs her best friend, she'll always be by you!" Warren chimed in.
"You're right! I'm glad I have Chloe." Max laughed, and looked at Warren, who stood quietly.
"Are you okay, Warren?"
"I'm fine. Just a weird dream..."
"Are you sure? You can tell me." Max assured. "I'll listen."
"Don't worry, Max. I feel good." He explained, lying slightly to prevent Max's concern. "Thanks for asking."
Max rubbed his arm affectionately. "No problem. I'm always here. Fancy meeting with Kate for some tea and breakfast?"
"Sure thing! I hope Kate wouldn't mind me crashing yours and her time-"
"No, she'll love your company!" Max explained. "So there's no need to worry."
"I'm glad!"

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