Shannon and Jared finally speak to each other for the first time since Jared's disappearance; Skyla and Shannon discuss their kiss.
Shannon and Skyla gathered their list and settled down. Emma, Tomo, Vicki (who had arrived earlier), Braxton, and Tim all gathered in Shannon's room. Together, Skyla and Shannon presented the five countries they had came up with.
"We have Germany, Portugal, Spain, France, and Greece," Shannon announced. He tossed the piece of paper on the table for everyone else to see it and sat down on his bed; Skyla sat down cross-legged beside him.
"We should narrow it down to one," Tomo said. "I think it's between Spain and Portugal."
"Dude you said one, not two!" Shannon threw his pillow at Tomo and hit him on the head; Tomo threw it back at him and almost hit Skyla.
"Oops. Sorry Skyla!" He walked over and hugged her.
"It's alright," she laughed.
Shannon tossed Tomo and Skyla a pillow. "In case he does hit you," he winked. He then tackled Tomo and started beating him with the pillow.
Skyla started laughing. It was the most violent pillow fight she had ever seen.
Tomo was beating the shit out of Shannon; they were both laughing. Skyla decided to start helping Tomo by holding Shannon down. When he stood up, she tackled his legs.
"Ow, Skyla!" he laughed. He tried to get her off, but couldn't.
"Get him, Tomo!" she giggled. Shannon started tickling her. Tomo started beating Shannon; he finally hit him in his crotch and Shannon howled and curled up in the fetal position.
"Okay, I think that's enough," Skyla said. She was still giggling; her face was red.
"Sorry, Shannon." Tomo said. He held out his hand to help him up. Shannon limped back over to sit on the bed.
"Okay," Shannon started, "We need to choose."
"I have a feeling about France," Skyla said. "But for some reason Spain just sticks out more." She sat back down by Shannon.
"Yeah." Shannon thought about it for minute. "What do you guys think about it?"
"Spain is a likely fit; it's a large country and we wouldn't think about it otherwise," Tomo said. Vicki and Emma nodded in agreement.
"So Spain is the country we choose?" Shannon asked to the room at large.
Skyla looked at everyone: Tomo texting; Vicki twirling her hair; Emma inspecting her nails; Braxton shaking his leg; Tim on Facebook. "Yes," Skyla spoke up. She knew it wasn't her place to talk but someone had to.
"Okay," Shannon said. He was glad she spoke up; everyone else wasn't paying attention.
The next morning they got on a flight headed for Spain. Shannon and Skyla sat by each other.
"Listen... about our kiss..." Shannon started. He didn't forget it. He was worried Skyla took it the wrong way.
She turned and looked at him; her usually warm eyes had gone ice-cold. "I thought we forgot about it."
"Ouch," Shannon thought. "I just wanted to... yeah let's forget I even asked," Shannon said sheepishly.
Skyla giggled and turned in her seat to face him. "It's okay; I didn't take it the wrong way." She turned back around and began reading on her Kindle.
Shannon sighed a huge sigh of relief. He got ready for a nap. About five minutes into his nap Skyla shook him awake.
"Shannon! Look at your phone!" she hissed.
He was groggy, but he did. It was a video call from a number he didn't know, but a face he did.
"Jared!" he whispered. He accepted the video call.
"I can't be on here long; I nabbed this phone from someone's pocket. They'll realize it's gone soon enough," Jared whispered. "I'm in the bathroom-"
"Nice to know!" Shannon interrupted.
"Shut up! Anyways, I'm in the bathroom because I can actually get privacy in here. I'm pretty sure you know where I am by now?" Jared asked.
"Spain?" Skyla said.
"Yes. But they're talking of moving me because of the news stories and reporters here. I don't know what to do with this phone once I get out of here-"
Shannon and Skyla heard angry shouts on Jared's end of the line.
"Fuck I gotta go! Shannon- take care. Girl- help him!" Jared said pleadingly.
"Jared- stick the phone in your shoes if you have them on. They won't check there!" Skyla quickly advised him.
They watched as Jared looked as his feet. "Thanks I'll do that! What's your name?" he asked her.
"Skyla." A small grin played on her lips.
"Well, Skyla, thanks for helping everyone find me," Jared said hurriedly. "I better hurry. Later, Shan!"
Jared was gone. Shannon didn't get a chance to say bye.
Skyla put her arms around Shannon and hugged him. She knew how much this video call meant to him; the way he acted now was so much different than how he was before the call.
"I'm going to find him and bring him home," Shannon said firmly. "Even if I have to put up a fight, he's coming home."
MEANWHILE IN SPAIN
The second Jared got off of the phone with Shannon he had headed back outside and curled up to sleep. He didn't get to sleep long.
"Hey, buddy!" Markus jabbed the toe of his workboots in Jared's ribs. "Get up, you're moving."
"Moving where?" Jared rubbed the sleep out of his eyes.
"Germany. France. Not really sure." Markus scratched his ever-balding head. "I just know Lady Jessey called me and left a message saying she wanted you moved."
"Gotta tell Shannon!" Jared thought immediately; that girl, Skyla or whoever, had been right to stuff the phone in his shoes- it now rested uncomfortably at the arch of his right foot.
"When am I going to be moved?" Jared asked. He was nervous.
"In a few hours." Markus was paying him no mind.
"Do I have enough time to use the bathroom?" Jared begged.
Markus scanned him over, trying to figure out what he was up to. "Yes."
"Thank you!" Jared said, and half-skipped, half-ran to the tiny bathroom. The second he was in there he locked the door and pulled the phone out of his shoe. He tried to connect with Shannon again.
"Shannon!" Jared hissed when the call went through. "Shannon they're moving me!"
"What? Where?" Shannon asked and leaned forward. He was alone this time; pity... Jared liked that Skyla chick.
"Germany or France; they aren't sure!" Jared's voice was a notch above a whisper.
"Well, we're in Spain. If they move you again it'll probably be to France; it's closer," Shannon said. "Keep the phone on you at all times and call me again if anything new happens."
"Okay. Later. And hurry up!" Jared said. He was tired of not seeing everyone.
"Bye. And you can try being in my position, eh?" Shannon smiled.
"Later, Jared!" the familiar voice of Skyla came from offscreen.
Jared had to grin. "Bye, Shannon; bye, Skyla."
Within thirty minutes Jared was loaded onto the back of a van with five guards. He always felt like he was tall, but compared to these guys he felt like a six-year-old: short and in the way.
"Where are we going?" Jared dared asking the guard closest to him: a husky 6'7" monster nicknamed The Bull.
"France." The Bull answered, and turned away.
"Dickhead," Jared thought. But then he had another fear: what if they all handed him over to the French division and they expected him to know hundreds of phrases in French? His forehead started sweating a little.
As if knowing his query, Markus turned to look at him. "The Spanish division is also the French division."
Jared looked at him dumbly. "So you guys speak..."
"English, French and Spanish." Markus looked at the road.
"Oh my God," Jared thought. The same people that tormented him in Spain are going to be tormenting him in France.
When they arrived the guards positioned themselves at each entrance and Markus and Luke escorted Jared inside. They tossed Jared in the corner like a rag doll.
A few hours later, Jared was asleep and dreaming. He dreamed of his mom, how worried she must be; of Shannon, how he looked to have aged ten years just from worry; and of the pretty stranger named Skyla. She was there both times when he video called Shannon. He doubted they had anything going on. But still...
What if they do have something going on? He hasn't been around them for four days. And he didn't even know that Skyla chick. She could be the world's biggest-
Jared woke up to beating and banging. Something was going on. Something huge.