Chapter Twelve: Out of Sorts-

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A/N: picture of Tyler on the side -------> 

    “Get up, Tony, you're helping me look for Alex,”

    “What, why?”

    “Because I told Ash I would keep an eye on him and he hasn't been back in almost three days. We gotta go find him.”

    Tony whined like a spoilt child. “He probably hasn't come back because of Tyler and if you ask me, that's a smart choice and he should stay away.”

    “Tony,” I put on my warning voice. “We're going and that's final.”

    He moaned about it some more as he got dressed and then said in a last attempt to sway my mind, “you know if Tyler finds out we're doing this he's gonna be pissed,”

    “Tyler's always pissed,” I dismissed, grabbing him by the collar of his sweater and dragging him out the door.

    We walked for about fifteen minutes in silence, except for Tony's incessant sighs of annoyance that seemed to last for hours. When we reached the part of town where no one in their right mind ever went, unless they were either stupid or had no choice, Tony shut right up and his posture grew rigid.

    He immediately objected once he realised what we were doing, “woah, wait, are you leading us to West Street? What, do you wanna get stabbed or some shit?”

    I rolled my eyes and carried on walking, speeding up just a bit. Tony stumbled nervously behind me, mumbling something along the lines of, “what makes you think Alex is gonna be down this way, anyway?”

    “He told me it was where he got his smokes and there's only one bloody pub in that area, so if he's gonna be anywhere it'll probably be there.”

    “He's a sixteen year old boy there's no way he'd be hanging around there,”

    I stared at the sky, forcing myself to explain calmly, “unless he met some people who knew the area. How else would he know about a corner shop that sells under-age kids tobacco?”

    Tony complained for another few minutes but continued to follow me despite his threats of turning his fine ass around.

    His fear of this side of town wasn't irrational. Most of the people here were crack-heads and heroin addicts. It seemed a reasonable assumption that Alex, being an “ex” crack-head, would know a few people there.

    When we rounded the corner that the pub was on – looking pitiful with its faded signs and half-broken benches – Tony threw himself into full panic mode.

    We approached the gap in the wall surrounding the building, only a few feet high and missing bricks here and there. Moss was almost covering it from top to bottom.

    “Oh man, we're so gonna get screwed and not in the usual way we get screwed. This will be a whole other level of screwed,”

    “Shut up, you've never even been down this way before so how do you know what the people are like?” I was really just trying to keep myself in a calm state of mind more than anything.

    “Cause I read the damn newspaper, that's how,” he said, glaring daggers at the side of my face. I could practically feel the incisions of his imaginary blades. “Plus, Donna is always telling me about drug raids and people being attacked in this area.”

    “Can't be that bad if there's still someone willing to run a pub here,”

    “Drug lords probably own it,” he replied, letting his imagination run wild. I didn't entertain his paranoia even as we walked through the doors. Although, I could feel him growing even more worried by the second as we weaved through the crowds of people.

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