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Tales From Mako Island

Written by Afanen Hits: 23008

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H2O: Just Add Water

Description: A H2O Fanfic
Summary: Alternate universe storyline. Set after the events of Series 1, the girls have to face new feelings and an old adversary.
Pairing: Rikki/Emma, Cleo/Lewis
Rating: PG (13): mild violence, strong language, nudity
License: copyright on all characters by Johnathan M. Shiff Productions Pty. Ltd.

 

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1. Crossing The Line

Cleo could feel the blood rushing into her head as she bent further over to see what blocked the filter of the dolphin’s basin. Some moron had thrown in the plastic-wrapping from his Twinkie-bar, which was now blocking the filters. Cleo asked herself if people threw their waste into their living room too. ‘Damned, Phil and the other dolphins live here‘, she thought angrily.

Beside the summer heat, she was struggling to pull the plastic from the filter, while trying to neither fall over nor touch the water at the same time. She had used her water-shaping-powers to punch a hole into the water surface, that allowed her to reach down dryly, but strains of hair always slipped out of the knot she tied them into, and got dangerously close to the rippling waves. She had no idea whether getting her hair wet would trigger metamorphosis, but she surly didn’t want to find out.

Just as she grabbed the junk, she heard a voice behind her. “One of these days you’re gonna fall in.” Cleo was so surprised she almost lost balance, but Rikki had already grabbed her by the shirt, and pulled her back.

“Ow, there’s no need to be so tough, I wouldn’t have fallen”, she cried.

“Sure.”, said Rikki. “But if you fell in broad daylight, they’re gonna nail you to a lab table, right here in this institute.”

There was real concern in her voice. Cleo looked up to her friend, and sighed. Rikki was right, there were too many people knowing about their identity already. Even though they managed to convince most of them, they’d become human again, that Denman woman was still snooping around, ogling at everyone who was involved in the affair, especially at Lewis.

‘God‘, she thought to herself, ‘are you jealous of someone who’s old enough to be Lewis’ mom? That’s pathetic.‘

She allowed Rikki to help her up. “Are you joining us at Wilfred’s?”, the blond girl asked. Wilfred’s was of course the ”JuiceNet café“, the place most of the youth in town met. ”Anytime“, Cleo said.

”But get changed first“, Rikki smirked into the direction of Cleo’s fish bucket, ”You smell like dead fish“.

Half an hour later, Cleo arrived at the “JuiceNet café”. She steered directly to the table where she had spotted her friends. “Hi guys!”, she said, beaming at Lewis, who sat on the table over some papers that looked mind-bogglingly complicated. Lewis didn’t look up from his studies. “Cleo’s here, hey Cleo!”, Emma said with her voiced raised. “And she doesn’t smell like fish anymore”, Rikki added.

“Lewis!”, Emma cried.

“Forget it”, Rikki shrugged, “The only way to get a welcome kiss from your boyfriend is when he needs a saliva sample.”

“What?” Lewis looked around. “Oh, hi Cleo!” Cleo sighed and sat on the free seat beside Lewis. Why did she have to fall in love with the uber-geek? She looked over to Emma, and asked herself, if it was easier with her and Byron. As far as she knew, the two of them hadn’t seen each other lately. Mostly because Byron insisted on taking Emma to the beach when he went surfing, what she obviously couldn’t do. They had some fights about it.

Emma now spoke: “Tomorrow’s the full moon, we need to figure out what we’re gonna do about it”.

“Ask it to skip and go on with the next new moon?”, Rikki asked sarcastically.

“Come on, you know what I mean, we really should avoid being outside.”

“I’m going to lock myself up in the cellar”, Rikki stated, obviously serious. “Your mom will love it”, Emma smiled. But she new why Rikki was concerned. Of all the full-moon-maladies, Rikki’s was the worst. She did not simply do stupid things, she lost control over her powers, which were dangerous enough, even if she was in control. She felt great sympathy towards the other girl, but resisted the urge to lay her hand on the blonde’s shoulder. Rikki wouldn’t want that sort of sympathy.

She looked over to Cleo and Lewis. “I need to get out of the house”, said Cleo. “Lil’ ’sis would get suspicious. So I said we’d have a sleepover night”.

“OK, Rikki’s cellar it is then.”

Lewis, finally packed up is studies. “Right then. I’ll pick you up at five Cleo.”

“Lewis, you’re not gonna come!”, Emma cried, “It’s strictly a girls thing.”

“And who’s gonna make sure that you’re not peeking at the moon again?”, Lewis responded.

“Lewis, we’re gonna be fine! Rikki’s cellar is 8 feet underground. No Windows and a fireproof door. No moonlight gets into there”, Cleo looked into Lewis’ eyes. “But it’s really sweet of you, to care for us so much.” She gave him a kiss on the lips, leaving him with a blank expression on his face as she rose from her seat. “Anyone in for a Strawberry-Fizz?”, she asked, walking over to the counter to get herself another drink. Emma couldn’t help laughing at the sight of Lewis, who gazed after his girlfriend with a look of total bewilderment on his face, as if he was still trying to grasp what just happened. “Lewis,” she said with a stern expression, “some day Cleo has to fill you in, on the facts of life.” Lewis startled “What facts?” It was obvious that he completely missed Emma’s statement. “And so Lewis Casanova took another heart by storm.”, Rikki said in a storyteller’s voice. That was too much for Emma, who burst into laughter, leaning herself on Rikki’s shoulder, burying her face in her friends neck. The tingling sensation, and the sudden physical contact to her friend made Rikki feel confused, who decided, that she should pat Emma’s back and otherwise ignore her.

Looking around the room, she saw something, that spoilt her mood immediately. Miriam and a bunch of her disciples just entered the room. “Oh look, it’s the bimbo squad”, she said, loud enough that everyone at her could hear. The others turned their heads and Cleo, returning from the counter with a drink in her hand, snorted. Emma let go of Rikki’s shoulder, and stopped giggling. Miriam however had already spotted them, and walked right over to the table next to them. She placed herself in such a way, that she could see Emma and Rikki, and -after her disciples gathered around her- raised her voice, to make sure that the three girls and Lewis could overhear her conversation.

“Of course not everyone is able to wear a Prada costume. See Emma over there for example. She’s wearing Cole’s’ summer sale collection, and it suits her OK.” Her friends giggled.

Emma looked bemused, but Rikki felt rage rising up in her. “What a bitch!” she exclaimed. Emma just shook her head, taking on her best science-teacher imitation: “She’s so much of an airhead, that her overall density is close enough the the surrounding air, that one can easily ignore her.”. This joke made Lewis burst into laughter, while the two girls stared at her mystified.

Miriam however, was far from done. “See, to fit into such an amazing piece of clothing such as I’m wearing, you need female forms”, she made a gesture, as if she was following her body shape with her hands to show what she meant. “Emma however probably doesn’t wear a bra. Not that she needs one anyway.”

Emma acted as if she didn’t hear anything, but Rikki saw she was hurt. Cleo grabbed her friends hand, but Rikki stood up from her seat and walked over to Miriam. “Oh, Miriam! Nice dress!” she said with twiddled enthusiasm. “I really think it is amazing!”

Miriam, expecting the upcoming insult, didn’t respond. “You know,” Rikki went on in a conversational tone. “The amazing thing is: This dress probably costs the annual wage of the average worker, and yet, you manage to make it look cheap! That’s true mastery!”

Smiling victoriously, she turned on her heels, and walked out of the room, before the other girl could answer. Cleo and Lewis stared after her. “Miaow!” Cleo imitated scratching claws with her hands. Emma left a few quid on the desk to pay for her drink, and went after Rikki. She caught up with her on the boardwalk.

“Thanks for your help in there, but what’s with all the rage?” she asked. “Sometimes Miriam just crosses the line”, Rikki simply replied.

“Yes, but you needn’t to jump up to her like that. Now she’s gonna turn her grudge on you”.

“Don’t worry, I can handle that”, answered Rikki, but she was grateful for Emma’s sympathy. Emma looked down herself. “She’s right about one thing, you know: I am flat.”

Rocket-mouthed as she was, Rikki said the first thing that came to her mind. “Nah, I wouldn’t want you any different.” She instantly blushed, realising how that came out. Emma looked at her bewildered. “That sounded much more raunchy, than it was intended.”, Rikki said. “But you really kicked Miriam’s ass”, Emma tried to change the subject. “I can’t remember having seen her so lost for words. Looking at it, I think I never have seen her shutting up at all, before” Rikki laughed, and the two girls walked along the boardwalk together.

The next day, on her way home from school Rikki was going through the list of things, she needed to do before the girls could lock up in the cellar. As if the full-moon wasn’t bad enough, the forecast had predicted heavy rain for the late afternoon, so time was running short. She had all the food and drinks already, and she only needed to get some DVDs. She tried to think of the movies to rent. She was in for “28 Days Later”, but with that one, she knew that Emma would jump on her lap 10 seconds after the opener, and Cleo would probably spent the night in the closet. So she decided to go on to romantic comedies, and ended up with ’10 Things I Hate About You’, just as she reached the front gate of her house.

A movement in the shadow over by the bushes behind the house pulled her out of her thoughts. She stopped and listened. She heard a noise of something moving in the undergrowth, and sighed. “Zane, come out of there, it’s pathetic!”, she shouted.

A few seconds later, Zane appeared from the bushes. “Why the hell are you lurking in my garden? Didn’t anyone tell you that modern girls think stalking is uncool?”

“We need to talk”, Zane stated.

“No Zane, we don’t. Everything is said.”

“Yeah, as if it was that easy! I thought we had a thing!”

“Yes, we had a thing. Emphasis on had, Zane. I wish I could say something else, but really: I’m sorry, Whatever it was between us, it’s gone.”

“You don’t understand! I love you!”, Zane cried desperately. “Zane, I’m sorry.”, Rikki felt really uncomfortable. She still liked Zane enough, that she didn’t want to hurt him, but this couldn’t go on, they’d broke up weeks ago, and they agreed on not seeing each other. “I do like you, Zane, I really do. But I don’t love you. We broke up weeks ago. I didn’t want to hurt you I swear, but it’s better this way. We agreed on this”, she went on rambling

Zane stepped closer and grabbed her arm. “That’s what you think now, but you will see!”

“Zane, you’re hurting me!”, she cried, struggling to get her arm free. Only as some passers-by approached on the sidewalk, he let go of her arm. Rikki turned, made ran for the house, and slammed the door behind her. “Get away, or I call the police, I swear!”, she shouted through the locked door. She went inside, and peered through the living room window, but Zane was gone.

Shaking and with tears dwelling, she sank into the sofa.

Two hours later, she had called Cleo, asking her to bring the DVDs, because she didn’t dare leaving the house. She hadn’t told her what happened in the garden though. Her mum had come home from work meanwhile, but she only gave a concerned look to her daughter, not asking her any questions. Outside the sky looked as if judgement day was about to break loose, and she could hear the rolling of thunder in the distance. ‘If they don’t hurry, they’ll have to swim here’, Rikki thought, imaging how it would look like, if her two friends rode in on a wave, fully transformed to mermaids. She caught herself picturing Emma on the terrace, asking for a towel to dry herself. She smirked. Ever since yesterday’s incident in the “JuiceNet café”, she had thought about Emma more often than usual. Her heavy reaction to Miriam’s insults, puzzled her. Miriam was a stupid cow, and she knew that, but she had felt to defend her friend’s honour anyhow. Why was that? Standing in for your friends is all right, but she had been overprotective. She shook her head to chase away these thoughts. Instead, she checked, if she didn’t forget anything in the cellar. When she came back upstairs, it had started to pour. The rain was like a curtain, and there was no sign of the other so far. Alarmed, she grabbed her mobile, but it rang just as she touched it.

“Sorry, I couldn’t make it”, she heard Cleo’s voice on the other end of the line.

“Where are you?”, she asked.

“Halfway to your place.”.

“Damn. Are you dry?”

“Soaked. But I’m OK. No one is on the streets anymore, and Lewis is here”

“Great. What you’re gonna do?”

“I’m going to Lewis’. He’s actually carrying me.”

Rikki couldn’t help but smile “How romantic! Say hi for me!”

She heard Cleo say “Rikki says hi!”, and some uttering in a stressed out voice, indicating that Lewis obviously found this less romantic than Cleo.

“So you’re taken care of?”, Rikki asked.

“Absolutely. I call you later.”

“Bye.”

She pressed the hang-up button, and instantly dialled Emma’s number.

“Hi.” Emma’s voice was scarcely audible. The humming of a motor indicated she was in a car.

“Are you OK?”

“I’m in mums car. She’s giving me a lift. And I have an extra big umbrella.”

“When will you be here?”

“Maybe half an hour, mum wants to stop at the mall. I could convince her, that I better stay in the car.”

“OK, but hurry up. Moonrise is in”, she checked her watch, “36 Minutes.”

“I won’t forget that. See you!”

“Bye.”

About half an hour later, Rikki stared out of the window nervously. The rain had nearly stopped, but it was already after moonrise. She looked out for the car, and she also somehow expected to see Zane lurking in the garden again. Finally, she saw a car approaching, that steered directly towards the front yard. She saw how the door opened, and some enormous umbrella was held out of the passenger side. Following the umbrella came Emma, dressed in a raincoat. Rikki could hear Emma’s mum shout something like “Have fun!”, and then the car headed of again.

Rikki grabbed a stack of towels, she had prepared, and opened the door. Emma was already there, folding the umbrella carefully, then leaving it outside.

“Need a towel?” Rikki asked her.

“No, thanks.”, the other girl replied. “You’re really late. Did you see the moon?”, Rikki asked, with a stern look on her face. “No, I’m fine.” Emma replied. “So where’s Cleo?”

“She couldn’t make it. She is at Lewis’ place. He carried her on his own hands!”, Rikki tried not to laugh at the thought of this.

Emma blinked at her friend. “He did what?”

“Carried her, after she transformed in the rain.”

“Who said romance is dead?”Emma smiled.

“I just hope they can behave themselves.” Rikki added, then she turned around. “Mum, we’re downstairs then!”, she called in the direction of the kitchen, where her mum did whatever she did in the kitchen (which was not cooking, because in the Chadwick household noone actually knew how to cook). The answer was some grunt, that sounded like an approval. The two girls went downstairs in the cellar room, that Rikki had turned into a comfy living space. An old sofa stood opposite to a TV, and in one corner three mattresses and sleeping bags had been prepared for the girls to sleep in later.

Drinks where carefully filled into sporting bottles, so none of them could accidentally spill themselves with water. Fruits cheese and candy where arranged on plates. Rikki had wanted to be as good a host Emma always was, and she thought that such thoroughness might impress her friends. The more she felt the disappointment, when Emma walked over to the candy-plates, without a single word. Instead she just grabbed some chocolate covered raisins, and stuffed them into her mouth. “Like the arrangement?”, Rikki asked. “Yeah, whatever.” Emma answered in a bored voice. “You’ve got something to drink?”

“Over there.” Rikki pointed at the bottles. Then she went to the TV to prepare the movies. “I asked Cleo to bring ’10 Things I Hate About You’, but since she’s not here, we have to stick to my collection, which sort of narrows the selection.”, she flipped through the DVDs she had, looking for a movie, that Emma might like. Emma stood behind her, and pointed towards one movie. “That one looks good.”

Rikki stared at the cover of “The Exorcist”, and frowned. “I don’t know, hon. It’s a horror movie. Usually you can’t sleep after seeing them, right?.”

“Oh, come on. I don’t want to sleep anyway. Don’t you have a real drink down here?”

“What’s wrong with them?”, Rikki asked, puzzled. She was sure that the juices she selected where Emma’s taste. “Well, something a bit stronger.”

“Emma, you never drink alcohol!”, Rikki stated, suddenly alarmed over her friends odd behaviour. Emma grabbed her phone. “Let’s see if I can call Byron”, she mumbled, trying to speed-dial. Rikki leapt forward, ripping the phone from Emma’s hands. “This is the last thing you want to do, right?”

“Party pooper”, Emma looked back at her. “It’s just because your moping about Zane, so you don’t want me to have fun too!”

Rikki’s heart sank. “No, I’m not.” she cried, “And Zane is history. He kicked himself out of the game all by himself.” Her voice sank to a whisper. “He was here today. He attacked me”

Emma shrugged. “And? Maybe he thought you like it tough.”

Rikki stared at her friend in disbelief. “Emma?”, she was close to tears now. “Did you get me. He attacked me. This is not fun! Please!” Suddenly she realised what was going on.

“No, no, no, no! You you’ve been looking at the moon!”

“God, what’s the deal?”Emma started to walk towards the door, but Rikki went after her. “Where do you think you’re going?”

“Partying. When you won’t let me invite Byron, I’ll go to him.”

“It’s a full moon outside, and it’s raining. You would change immediately, and not be able to change back. I can’t let you go out there.”

“What would you do? Tie me up?” Emma looked at Rikki expectantly.

“If I have to.” Rikki whispered.

“And you would like that, would you?”, Emma gave her friend a frivolous look.

“Emma, please. Don’t make this harder.”, Rikki’s voice was trembling.

“What?”, Emma retorted. “Did you think, I didn’t notice? The way you look at me, the way you defend my honour? I’m surprised I didn’t figure out earlier.”.

She moved herself so close to Rikki, their cheeks brushed. “I know you like to be on top.”, she whispered into the other girls ear.

Rikki tried to speak, but Emma laid a finger over her lips. “Shh”, she hissed.

Rikki’s mouth went dry, she tried to speak, tried to move, but she couldn’t. She felt a tingling sensation in her stomach, and her knees got wobbly. She closed her eyes. “You don’t want Zane, right? You want me.”, Emma mumbled, then pressed her lips onto Rikki’s.

Rikki felt herself trembling under her friends touch. She wanted to push the other girl away, but something held her back. She liked the feeling of Emma’s lips on hers, and she liked what Emma’s hands were doing, working their downwards over her belly. She felt Emma’s tongue pressing against her lips, and opened her mouth slightly to let her in. The sweetness of that sensation was making the room spin around her. “Let her go on.” an evil voice in her head said. “It’s what you wanted all the time, and she won’t remember any of it by tomorrow!”

Applying all her strength, she pushed Emma away. “No! Emma, that’s not you!”

Emma grinned. “But you liked it, didn’t you?”

Rikki now felt hot tears running over her face. “Why are you doing this to me? Especially since you know what I feel for you.” Emma approached her again. “You’re getting hot on this, eh?”, she smirked. “Don’t do this!”, Rikki begged. Then evaded her friend, turned, darted up the stairs and slammed the door shut behind her. On the outside, a key was in the lock. She turned it. Emma was rattling the doorknob behind her “Come back in! You bitch!”, she cried. “Open the fucking door the door!” Emma hammered against the door.

Rikki backed away. “I,.. I can’t”, she said, more to herself than to Emma. “I’m sorry.”

She fled up the stairs towards the kitchen: “Mom?”. Her mother seemed to have left again, Rikki turned into the living room; and immediately found out that she had made a mistake. Although her gaze was blurred by tears, she noticed that the skies had cleared eventually, and a bright full moon shone through the living room window, right into her face. She could feel the effects immediately. Because she was so emotionally overwhelmed, she had no means of defence. The temperature in the room sprung by 5 degrees within seconds, and steam rose from the flower vase on the table. She knew she wouldn’t be able to stop her powers, and that she would burn the house to cinders, if she didn’t get out. She bolted for the door, and ran for it.

Meanwhile, in Lewis’ room, Cleo had managed to rub herself dry, and her fishtail had grown back into normal legs. She was lying on Lewis’ bed, while he darkened the room, by using duct tape to close the gaps between the shutters and the window frame.

“Odd, isn’t it?”, she asked him. “Us, locked in here tonight.”

“Well, we can hardly let you go outside, can we?”, Lewis answered. “Do you still have the movie?”

“Yes, it’s in my handbag. You don’t actually wanna watch it, would you? It’s a girls flick. No flying star ships, no aliens, no Captain Picard.”, she mocked him.

“Oh, that’s alright. I’d like to watch it with you”, Lewis said, carelessly grabbing her handbag, looking for the DVD. Clumsily, he let the bag topple over, and it’s contents shattered on the floor. “Oh god, I’m sorry!” he claimed, trying to gather everything together, while Cleo was bursting with laughter.

When he picked up a small wrapper, he froze. As he realised what he was holding, he instantly turned pink. The blank expression on his face made Cleo laugh even harder. “Facts of life, Lewis!”, she exclaimed under her laughter. “That is a condom.”

Lewis almost dropped it, when she said this. “I, I know what a condom is.”, he defended himself. “I just didn’t expect you to, you know, walk around with one.”

Cleo became serious again. “Eternal mystery of women’s handbags.”, she explained. “You’d be surprised, what girls carry around. You didn’t expect me to come around unprepared when I end up lying in your bed half naked, did you?”

If it was possible, Lewis’ head turned even redder. “Err, but you have been lying on my bed many times before, we know each other since the fifth grade”, he muttered.

“Times change Lewis. I don’t say something will happen right away. But I prefer to be prepared. We’re not kids anymore, and we definitely have a thing going here.”

“Err, I think so.” Lewis still didn’t know where to look, so he pretended to be busy with packing a lip gloss back into Cleo’s bag, sitting down on the bedside. She sat up, and put her arms around his shoulders.

“Found it?”, she asked.

“What?”, Lewis almost jumped up.

“The DVD, stupid”.

“Oh, sure.” He grabbed the DVD, went over to his computer, and put it in, starting the movie. He looked uncomfortably around the room, when Cleo patted on the free space in the bed, beside her. He went back to the bed, lying down next to her, just to find himself in a tight embrace. She kissed him, then rested her head on his shoulders, and stroked his chest with one hand, while they both looked over to the screen, where the movie opened with a flight over a majestically old building, accompanied by rock-music.

Rikki had been running non-stop all the way down to the marina. Several people where still outside, and she tried to avoid them. A shadowy figure came up the road, and she wanted to get past it, but it blocked her way. She realised it was Zane. “Rikki,” he said, with an obvious lack of control over his voice. “I want to apologise. I’m sorry about earlier.” He was clearly drunk.

“Zane, this is not the best time.”, she said warningly.

“Please, just let me apologise. I leave you alone then”, he pleaded, stretching out his hands towards her.

Rikki panicked. She raised her arms in defence, grabbing his wrists to push them away. He screamed in pain, and broke free from her grip immediately. Where her fingers hat touched him, he had red burn marks on his arms. He stared at her for a moment, then turned around, and tumbled away as fast as he could in his drunken state.

Rikki started running again, down the road, over the pier, and jumped into the water, without caring if anyone had seen her. She felt the strange prickle of the transformation, when she dived into the water. The cool water brought her back to senses, and she decided to head to the only place she felt safe right now: Mako Island.

Cleo woke up a little disoriented, and needed a moment, to find out where she was. She felt around for a light switch, found it, and turned the light on. Lewis was sleeping beside her, his hands resting on the pillow, and his eyes twitching from time to time. She remembered last night and smiled. They didn’t do “it”, but took it on slowly. Lewis was, as it turned out, not so clumsy after all. She still felt a little embarrassment, when she thought ways he had touched her, but she also felt a wave of happiness flushing though her body, when she thought of it.

She looked around for her watch, and found that it was past eight in the morning. The moon had set, and she could go out safely. She suddenly remembered, that she had promised Rikki to call her, grabbed her bag, took out the mobile, and speed-dialed Rikki’s number. There was no answer. She tried Emma’s phone, but only got a mechanical voice that explained that “The person you have called is temporarily not available”.

Alarmed, she woke up Lewis. “Something’s wrong with the others”, she explained, darting out of bed. Lewis stared at her, and she stared back. Then she realised that she was naked, and hastily started to grab her clothes from the floor. ‘That’s ridiculous!’ she thought, ‘He’s seen me like this all night’.

They got dressed and sneaked out of the room, to try and get past Lewis’ mum, who was preparing breakfast in the kitchen.

“Lewis, is that you?”, she asked.

“Yes, mom. I’m just going out!” He rushed Cleo to the door.

“Don’t you want some breakfast?”

“Ah, no mum. Cleo’s already waiting outside for me!”, he lied.

“Well, she can come in anytime. Ask her if she had some breakfast. There’s enough for everyone.” his mum answered from the kitchen.

“Thanks mum, but I don’t think so. See you!” They rushed outside, and immediately started running.

The Chadwick house was still quiet, Rikki’s mom either still asleep or at her boyfriends place, but the front door was open. The two went in, and headed for the cellar. The door was locked locked from the outside. Cleo turned the key, and cautiously opened the door.

“Rikki? Emma?”, she asked into the darkness.

They heard a mumbled response from the backside of the room, and as Lewis finally turned on the light, they found Emma crawled up in one of the mattresses , looking as if she had a terrible hangover.

“Emma, you’re OK?”, Cleo asked “What happened?”

“I have no idea. I can’t remember anything from the moment, I got down here”, Emma replied. “When I woke up, the door was locked, and Rikki was gone. She also took my phone. Thank heavens, you came.”

Lewis looked concerned. “Did you look at the moon last night?”

“I have no idea”, Emma replied. “Oh my god! I hope I haven’t done anything to Rikki!”

“I’m going to check her room”, Cleo said, and went upstairs, while Lewis helped Emma up to her feet.

“And what happened to you?”, she asked. “You’re virtually glowing!”

“Um, well, ask Cleo”, Lewis said, hastily looking away. Emma smiled knowingly.

Cleo came back downstairs. “She’s not in her room”, she told the others.

Emma started to get nervous. “We have to find her!”

“When she walked out in the moonlight, she probably lost control over her powers again.”, Lewis stated. “That’s why she ran away last time.”

“Then she is probably on Mako Island!”, Emma stated.

“I’ll get the boat ready!”, Lewis exclaimed.

“No boat, we swim, that’s faster.”

The two girls ran down the street towards the pier, leaving Lewis behind. By the pier, they looked around to see if they were alone, and then jumped into the water.

On Mako Island the girls went on land, close to the underwater entrance to the moon pool. After some nerve-wrecking minutes of waiting to get dry enough to have their human legs back, they went into the forest. They immediately saw the burnt grass and leaves, and followed that trail, to find Rikki, not far from the beach, staring at a burned log. Cleo wanted to rush to her, but Emma held her back. “Swim back and tell Lewis, we found her. Let me talk to her.”

Cleo didn’t understand exactly what was going on between her two best friends, but she new that it was better to let them sort it out alone. She headed back to the beach, while Emma walked over to her friend.

“You should look out for a new secret hiding spot. This one isn’t so secret anymore.”, she said in a friendly, mocking voice. Rikki turned her head and tried to crack a smile, but didn’t actually succeed. Emma set beside her, and looked at her friend. Rikki had been crying. “What’s wrong, honey?”, she asked the blond girl.

“I ran into Zane again”, she simply said.

“God, why doesn’t he simply leave you!”, Emma got angry.

“I think I hurt him. Physically.”, Rikki looked up to her friend. “I didn’t mean to.”

“What happened? From the beginning”, Emma demanded.

“I tried to tell you yesterday, but you were, well, I think you where not yourself.” Rikki sighed. “Yesterday, he was lurking in my garden, watching me or something. I confronted him, and he threatened me. He grabbed my arm and shook me, and I got scared. I ran into the house, and stayed there until you came.”

“I’m sorry.” Emma said, putting an arm around her friends shoulder.

“When I was out last night, I ran into him again. He was drunk, I think. He tried to apologize, but I panicked and grabbed his wrists to push him away. I think I burned him. He screamed and ran away.”

She started sobbing. “I don’t want to hurt people!”, she muttered.

“It’s not that bad.”, Emma tried to comfort her.

“I could have killed him!”, she cried out.

Emma held her friend for a moment, until she gathered herself again. Then she asked: “What where you doing out there anyway. What happened that you left me?”

“Nothing.”

“You didn’t run away for nothing, and I know that I can’t remember the night, what means that I got moon-whacked. I must have done something bad, that caused you to lock me in.”

“It’s nothing really. It,…it was me.” That was true, it hadn’t been so much Emma’s behaviour, than her own reaction to it, that made her freak out.

“Rikki, I must have done something to you, to make you freak out, and I need to know what it was. Even if it is something terrible.”, she begged, “I cannot stand knowing I hurt you, and not knowing what I’ve done. I would not be able to look into a mirror ever again. Rikki, please?” For a moment, Rikki said nothing. “You kissed me.”, she simply said.

Emma stared at her in disbelief: “What?”

Rikki’s voice was nothing more than a whisper now. “You kissed me”, she repeated, “And I liked it.”

There was an awkward silence between the two girls, as Emma was petrified by the confession.

“Wow!”, she finally said. “That’s something I didn’t expect.”

“I had to leave you”, Rikki said depressed. “I didn’t want to take advantage of you. And”, she paused, “I would have, if I stayed.”

After a while Emma stood up. “Do you fancy me?” Rikki nodded. “Wow, that’s a lot to digest”, the smaller girl said.

‘ “Are you mad at me?”, Rikki asked cautiously.

“What? No, No!” Emma cried. “It’s just that I don’t now if I should be shocked or happy about it. And I cannot even go to my best friend and talk about it with her. That’s weird!”

“Indeed.” Rikki managed a smile, which was partly caused by the notion that Emma hadn’t out ruled the possibility, that her feelings towards her might be of a similar kind than Rikki’s own.

Emma looked at Rikki. “I know, it’s a lot to ask, but would you be angry, if I told Cleo? I think I need someone to talk this over, and I can’t think of no one else.”

Now Rikki really smiled. “I can’t stop you, can I?”

“She’s your friend too. And if you don’t want me to tell her, I will not do it.”

“I’ll think about it.”, promised Rikki.

Emma smiled “She will eventually find out anyway, will she?. How about breakfast?”

She marched towards the shore, leaving Rikki behind, mystified about what these words meant. Rikki shook her head, and went after Emma.

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