❝ it ends here tonight ❞

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Can you feel me in your arms?
Holding my last breath,
Safe inside myself.
Are all my thoughts of you.
Sweet raptured light,
It ends here tonight

"My Last Breath" -Evanescence

Ashton stared at his brother. "This is not part of the plan."

I glanced at him. "You have a plan?"

"No," he admitted. "But if I had made one, this wouldn't have been part of it."

"You came without a plan?" I demanded. My head spun and my arm felt tired- why was I holding it up so high? I let it drop to my side, and attempted to shake off the dizziness.

He gave me a flat look. "Like you had one."

"I brought a gun," I replied defensively.

"Where is it now?" he asked.

I glanced away. "Detective Fallon took it from me."

Nathan glanced at us, then back at Vanessa. "What's going on? Elena, why are you bleeding?"

Ashton and I both looked down to see blood leaking from below the makeshift bandage Ashton had applied earlier. "Damn it, Elle, you need to keep that above the heart!" Ashton exclaimed, grabbing my wrist and holding my arm up.

"What's going on?" Nathan repeated.

None of us answered.

"Ash?" Nathan asked, glancing at his brother. Ashton didn't respond, instead just played, or 'fixed' the cloth tied around my arm. I could tell he had heard the question, though, not just because it was nearly dead silent in the room, but also from the way he carefully avoided looking up.

Seriously? Nathan had just walked into middle of everything but Ashton still didn't want to tell him anything? I wanted to say something, but I didn't even really know what was happening, and that combined with how lightheaded I was felling, wouldn't make a very good explanation.

"Ness?" Nathan asked, his voice cracking a bit.

Vanessa stared at him, and through my hazy vision, I saw a tear slide down her cheek, but she turned so fast, I wasn't sure if it had just been my imagination. "I'm sorry, Nate. You weren't supposed to find out," she said, her voice trembling. But then it changed, becoming harder as she turned to Detective Fallon. "Take him away."

Nathan only then seemed to notice the detective he had hired in the room. "What are you doing here?" he demanded, eyeing Detective Fallon wearily as he advanced towards Nathan.

Detective Fallon didn't answer; instead he handed his gun to Vanessa, then pulled out an identical one from his jacket.

Like he was some kind of factory for them.

I shouldn't have found it funny, given the situation I was in, but the loss of blood had probably started to make its way to my head since I suddenly had the delirious urge to giggle madly.

"Stop! I hired you!" Nathan exclaimed, struggling as Detective Fallon grabbed him. He froze when the gun pressed against his temple.

"Careful," Vanessa said, her voice sharp.

"I never worked for you, Mr. Sinclair," Detective Fallon replied. "Though I did appreciate the extra money."

"Where are you taking my brother?" Ashton demanded as Detective Fallon began pulling Nathan towards the hallway.

Vanessa turned to look at him, eyes blazing with fury. "You can choose. Stay here with Elena, or leave with Nate."

Ashton, who'd had his mouth open to yell at Detective Fallon and Vanessa, snapped it shut, looking dumbfounded.

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