Chris paused for a moment for dramatic effect. It was deathly silent as Geoff bravely stared down the barrel of the gun.
Chris's finger twitched over the trigger.
Geoff jumped about a foot and Chris sighed. "Excuse me," he told Geoff, still keeping the gun trained on him as his other hand reached into his pocket and pulled out his cell phone. His eyes widened at the caller ID and he instantly answered it.
"McLean here, how are you Mr. Gavrilovic? Oh, right, Jonathan, haha...No, of course now is a good time! Anything for you, sir!" He shot Geoff something that could almost pass for an apologetic look as he listened to what Jonathan Gavrilovic was saying on the other end.
Geoff didn't know what to do. Should he make a run for it? Nearby Justin, Noah and Bridgette were all watching with wide eyes. He locked eyes with Bridgette and she silently plead for him to run.
He shook his head. There was no use. The moment he so much as twitched his feet Chris would squeeze the trigger, and if by some miracle he missed one of the dozens of cameramen around would apprehend him.
But if he could get the gun from Chris...that might change everything. Immersed in his thoughts, he missed the faint rumbling in the distance.
"Yes!" Chris suddenly shouted, "Excellent! Thank you so much sir! Yeah, I'm just about wrapped up with the show here, and I'll start the casting for a second season right away! Mhm, yup, okay. Definitely. You bet," his already impossibly wide grin got even broader "fifteen million? Excellent! Ok, good. I'll get back to you in a couple hours when I'm all finished up. Yup, okay! Talk to you soon." He hung up the phone and turned back to Geoff, readjusting his grip on his handgun. "Sorry about that."
The rumbling in the distance became a nearby roar, and one of Chris's interns came running up to him. "Sir, we've got a dozen helicopters heading over the island. They're military helicopters!"
"Good," Chris smirked, "how kind of Jonathan to send me a ride for our meeting."
"But sir, there's a ton of soldiers, and they're all heavily armed!"
"I would imagine so," Chris sounded annoyed, "it's the military."
As he said this, two of the helicopters burst into the clearing where Chris, Chef, Zolkoff, Noah, Bridgette, Justin, Geoff, Duncan and about a dozen cameramen were.
"Get down on the ground, all of you!" A voice blared from the helicopter.
Chris squinted up at the helicopter. There was no mistaking it: military. Why were there guns pointed at them though? This didn't make any sense!
"What's the matter with you guys, everything's fine!" He shouted up to the helicopter. "Calm down, I'll be wrapped up here in a minute!"
"Sir, he doesn't seem to be backing down," the pilot said to his chief.
"Fire a warning shot," the chief said.
"But sir, he has a gun." The pilot said nervously, "Wouldn't it be safer to just drop him?"
The chief shook her head, "no, don't. This guy is more deluded than we thought. We'll need him for testimony and to find out what the hell exactly happened. Just a warning shot."
One of the men in the helicopter hefted his assault rifle and lazily sprayed down three or four rounds onto the ground. They didn't land near anyone, but Chris got the message. He dropped his handgun and put his hands up, spluttering in confusion.
"Everyone, on the ground!" The pilot repeated. "Don't make me ask again, dammit!"
"Do what he says," Chris said quickly, getting on the ground. "What the hell is going on?!"
Within seconds everyone was on the ground and the two helicopters had landed.
About a dozen fully equipped soldiers stormed out of the flying machines and rushed the group of people, demanding that handguns be given up.
The chief walked over to a prone Chris and yanked him roughly to his feet. "Where's the head of police?" she barked at him, shaking him.
"Reg? He's contained in one of our buildings. What the hell is going on?"
The chief let go and jabbed him roughly in the chest. "Take me to him. Now."
Stammering and confused, Chris led the chief and three soldiers to Reg.
Meanwhile, Geoff, Noah, Bridgette and Justin were all looking at each other in shock.
"What's the meaning of this? Why are you doing this?" Chris asked as he led the chief and the soldiers to Reg.
"Did you actually believe It?" The chief asked, shaking her head in disgust. "Christ, how stupid are you?"
There was silence for a few seconds, "We're not sure yet," The chief told him, "but we're going to find out, and you're going to be very helpful in that."
Chris gulped as he reached Reg's 'cell'. He opened it and they walked in.
Reg, reclining on his bed, jumped at seeing everyone there. His eyebrows rose as he saw the chief. "Roxanne?" his face broke out into a grin and he instantly stood up and saluted. "Guess my tracking beacon worked, then."
"At ease, beat-cop," Roxanne joked, "and yeah, we got your signal."
"Tracking beacon? What tracking beacon? Why would..." Chris trailed off, starting to piece two and two together. "What...I don't understand."
"I don't think anyone does," Roxanne told him, "but like I said, we're going to find out."
"What do we do?" Noah whispered to Bridgette. Everyone had been face down on the ground for nearly half an hour.
"We're being rescued, idiot, just let it happen!" Bridgette snapped. She had a huge smile on her face.
"Geoff is so lucky its borderline ludicrous," Noah pointed out.
Bridgette only nodded in agreement.
The two stared at the puzzled party boy, also faced down on the ground. He caught Bridgette's eyes and smiled at her, and she smiled back.
Everyone heard footsteps as Roxanne and Chris returned, Reg in tow.
"It's Gavrilovic," Reg was explaining to Roxanne. "Chef'll tell you." He looked around and saw the cook on the ground as well and scoffed. "Chef, get up. He's on our side." he told the soldiers. He saw Justin, Geoff, Noah and Bridgette and pointed to them as well. "And for God's sake, someone offer those poor kids some comfort, don't just keep them sitting on the ground after all they've been through!"
Hesitantly, the four kids got up. Chef followed and walked over to Reg and Roxanne, beginning to fill her in on what he knew.
Reg was scanning the rest of the people. He had a sinking feeling in his gut now as to why Chef hadn't visited him.
His son was nowhere to be seen.
But there would be time to grieve later. Right now he had to focus on the task of hand. That didn't help with the wrenching pain in his gut, though.
Everyone froze. Chef, Chris, Roxanne, Reg and the four standing teens turned to look at the source of the word. A cameraman, hat pulled low over his eyes, was still on the ground, though his neck was craned up to look at Reg.
Reg walked over to the cameraman and yanked the hat off his head.
Duncan blinked up at his father, shocked.
Chef swore under his breath, a smile on his face and Chris actually gave a little shriek.
"Duncan!" Geoff and Bridgette said at the same time, racing over to them.
"Son..." A slow grin formed on Reg's face, "not that I'm not tremendously relieved...but what the hell are you doing?"
Duncan stood up and was promptly crushed in a hug by his father. Duncan returned it and chuckled. "I may have, sort of, kind of, faked my death and hid as a cameraman."
Chris at this point looked like he was about to faint.
He almost did faint when Bridgette's fist slammed into his face. He hit the dirt, blood streaming from his nose and lip. He held his face and glared at Bridgette. "What the hell? You can't do that to me!"
Her response was swiftly kicking him in the face, knocking him back into the dirt. She moved in for more, but was held back by Chef.
"Let me go!" She shrieked. "He deserves it! He deserves everything!"
"I know," Chef said calmly, "he'll get what he's due, but it ain't yo' place to do it."
Bridgette slowly calmed down and Chef felt okay with releasing her. The moment he did she tackled Duncan in a hug, who had just been released by his father.
Duncan laughed as he hugged her back. "I'm glad to see you too, Malibu."
A smiling Geoff walked over and clapped the punk on the back. "You, my good man, are a dick." He teased, "for leaving me all by myself."
"Sorry dude," Duncan said, looking sheepish for once as he rubbed the back of his neck, "I just did what I had to, y'know..."
The party boy laughed and pried Bridgette off of Duncan, drawing her close to him. He breathed in her scent and kissed the top of her head. "I," he declared happily, "am one lucky dude."
Justin, who had been watching the whole incident rather awkwardly, piped up finally. "So, what happens now?"
Bridgette shot him a death glare and he winced, instead focusing his attention to Roxanne and Reg.
"Well," Roxanne smiled at him, "we get you out of here and back to your families first thing tomorrow. It's already getting late though, is there somewhere you can stay here?"
"There's a resort about a half mile thataway," Noah told her, pointing out over the water. "If we have to stay here tonight we might as well stay there. It's really nice."
Roxanne nodded. "Very well. Pack any things you might have and meet here in twenty minutes. I will send soldiers with each of you to keep an eye on you."
"Your stuff is still in the cabin, dude," Geoff told Duncan as the three boys walked to grab their things.
"Whatever, I'll probably burn it all anyways, try to rid myself of the memories." Duncan said, shrugging.
"I'm surprised you didn't get more of a fight," Noah remarked as everyone watched the three boys walk off, flanked by soldiers.
"Me too," Roxanne admitted. "It seems when everyone figured out that what was going on here was completely unauthorized and horrifically illegal they wanted to put up as little resistance as possible." She glared at all the prone cameramen and Chris and Zolkoff, "not that it'll help them."
"Look Geoff, I really am sorry," Justin said awkwardly as the three boys packed up their stuff.
"And I already told you dude, it's all good."
Duncan raised an eyebrow, "how can you just forgive him?"
Geoff waved a hand, "no harm, no foul, right? Besides, the dude was just doin' what he had to to survive. I can't fault him for that."
"I mean, I guess," Duncan didn't sound convinced, "but still..."
Silence settled over them as they finished packing him. Geoff slung his bag around his shoulder and clapped his hands, "alright boys, who is ready to get the hell off this island?"
Justin smiled tiredly, "count me in."
"It's been a long time coming," Duncan agreed.
Duncan, Noah, Bridgette, Geoff and Justin sat around the couches at the Playa with full bellies and tired minds.
Geoff stroked a dozing Bridgette's hair as everyone sat in companionable silence. Noah was reading his book. Duncan and Justin were playing video games, though neither were really invested.
Justin sighed as he lost his battle with Duncan's character and put his controller down on the couch next to him. "This is weird."
"You get used to it." Noah told him. "Don't worry."
Justin nodded, looking grateful for the comfort but not totally convinced. "I dunno, you were only there for what, five days? I've been there for over a month."
Noah's eyes flicked up from his book to glance at Justin. "You'll get better, you'll have to."
"Because the alternative is going nuts, and I don't think that's very fair for the people that had to die so you could live."
Justin let that soak in. There was silence for a few seconds. Geoff had started to doze off as well but Duncan watched the conversation with rapt interest.
"You're right," the model admitted. "Thanks, Noah."
Noah shrugged off the thanks, "no big deal." He turned to look at the sleeping blonde couple on the couch, wrapped in each others arms, and smiled slightly. "That looks like a good idea." he noted, standing up. "I'm off to bed."
"Later," Duncan said.
"Goodnight," Justin said.
Noah left them.
"You up for another round?" Duncan offered, waggling his controller.
"Nah, I'm good," Justin said, "I'm gonna go take a nice, hot shower and go to sleep."
Duncan rolled his eyes, "you already took like, two showers today."
"And I'll be damned if I can't take a third," Justin smirked, standing up. "Later."
Duncan nodded his goodnight and turned to look at the sleeping Bridgette and Geoff. His mind instantly went to Courtney and he winced.
"It's too bad you can't be here with us," He said quietly, standing up. He grabbed a nearby blanket and draped it over the two before taking his leave for bed as well.
The five survivors stood on the Dock of Shame the next morning, packed up and ready to leave the hellhole known as Wawanakwa Island.
"The boat will be here in about five minutes," Roxanne informed them, also on the Dock. "Your families are onboard. We'll travel back to the mainland together, where we'll wrap all this up."
Bridgette bit her lip, upset. Geoff noticed and quickly wrapped his arm around her. "Bridge, my family are going to be so stoked to meet you! I told them about you on my chat with them and they can't wait!"
Bridgette's cheeks turned pink and the worry disappeared from her eyes. She smiled at him, "aw, I can't wait either."
"What stuff do we have to wrap up?" Noah asked Roxanne, not sounding impressed. "I want to go home, what more could you possibly need from us?"
Roxanne gave him a cool look. "Whatever the hell we need, Noah. Don't forget who you're speaking with."
Noah rolled his eyes but forced politeness into his tone. "Fine, would you please tell me why you will need us?"
"No," she said flatly, "you'll be informed once we hit the mainland."
"Where's Chris?" Justin asked.
"He, along with the crew, did not get the luxury of staying at a resort last night. They were shipped off the island. They're probably behind bars right now, awaiting their sentences."
"Good," Duncan spat. "Too bad Canada doesn't allow the death penalty."
"You're telling me," Roxanne grumbled.
The noise of a boat was heard on the horizon.
Reg stepped up to Duncan and put a hand on his shoulder. "Your mother is going to be a wreck." he said grimly.
Duncan sighed, "I know."
The boat appeared on the horizon and made its way to the Dock. It docked and a stream of people came flooding out.
"Duncan!" Duncan's mother, Jordyn, cried, crushing her son in a bear hug.
Duncan felt his eyes water as he hugged his mom back. "Hey Mom," he said, his voice cracking. "I missed you."
She squeezed the life out of him for a few more seconds before turning her attention to Reg. "You idiot!" she snapped, also crushing him in a bear hug. "I could have lost both my boys..."
"Yes dear, I'm sorry I didn't let you come along." Reg apologized, hugging her back.
Meanwhile, Noah was being greeted by his parents too.
"I'm so glad your safe, honey," Noah's mother said, hugging him tightly.
"Hey Mom, hey Dad," Noah said, hugging his mother back, "I'm fine, I'm fine, I got out early."
"As to be expected of my son," Noah's father said, clapping his son's shoulder with a proud smile.
"Where's the rest of the parade?" The bookworm asked, looking for his eight brothers and sisters.
His mother's smile faltered, "we...well we never told them you were sent off," she said, "we didn't want them to worry."
"Ah," Noah's face remained emotionless, but his voice was bitter, "makes sense."
As Noah's parents exchanged guilty looks, Justin was being hugged by his mother.
"You won," his mother was sobbing, "you're safe, I thought I had killed you!"
Justin was giving his Dad a shocked look. His mother never showed him this much affection.
"It's a long story," Justin's father said, shooting his wife an unhappy look. "We'll explain later..."
Justin nodded and just held his mother close.
"Mom, Dad, Stu, this is my girlfriend, Bridgette." Geoff introduced to his smiling family.
Bridgette was instantly enveloped in a hug by Geoff's mother.
"It's so nice to meet you, honey," she said kindly.
Bridgette was speechless, "Oh, it's nice to meet you too," she finally stammered out.
Stuart grinned at her, arm around his younger brother. "Welcome to the family! It'll be dope to finally have a sister!" He looked startled for a second, "though you can't really be a sister, because that's gonna be weird if Geoff does you and stuff."
"Stuart!" Geoff's mother said sternly, smacking the boy on the back of the head.
"Yikes, I was just kidding," Stuart said, guffawing along with his little brother.
Bridgette, meanwhile, had turned to Geoff, "W-what does he mean, welcome to the family?" she gulped nervously.
Geoff's guffawing slowly subsided and he looked at her seriously. "Well, y'know, I thought since you don't really have family you might wanna stay with us," he shrugged, a little sheepish. "But only if you want," he offered quickly.
He was instantly tackled in a hug by Bridgette and he chuckled.
"I think I'd like that," she smiled into his neck.
"So what needs to be discussed?" Reg asked tiredly.
The five survivors, their families, and Roxanne were currently back on the mainland, holed up in a little office at the local police HQ.
"We just need you six to sign contracts," Roxanne said, pointing to the five teens and Duncan's father. "that swear you to silence about all this."
"Swear us to silence?" Duncan repeated curiously, "why?"
"Fine by me, I'd like to forget this ever happened," Noah said, "give me the contract."
Roxanne nodded and an assistant hurried over and handed Noah a small stack of papers. The assistant passed similar stacks out to the others.
The chief turned to Duncan, "I'll be blunt with you. This never should have been possible. Having an outside force get into Canada and do this under our noses would look terrible if went public. We're offering you a consolation fee, something I'm sure doesn't even begin to make up for what trauma you experienced while confined to the island, but it's the best we can do."
"A million dollars?" Noah suddenly squeaked, eyes wide as he gaped at the contract.
"No way," Duncan said quickly, grabbing his contract and leafing through it.
Roxanne gave a rather grim smile. "Yes. Again, I know it can't compare to what you kids went through, but we really do want to keep this quiet. You deserve to be able to tell your story, but I'm afraid that just can't happen."
"Fine," Justin said, picking up his contract and signing it, "what's over cover story?"
Roxanne gave him an approving nod. "Good question," she said, "The twenty four of you went on a hiking trip in the Himalayas. Reg, you were one of the aides. Your group was hit by an avalanche and you six were the only survivors."
"Sounds like a lame cover story," Noah said snidely, "why rope us in with the others who're dead?"
"That's not my call to make," Roxanne said, also sounding unconvinced of the cover story. "Just sign the contracts so we can get out of here and you guys can return home."
There wasn't much talking as everyone hurriedly signed the contracts. "Your checks will be mailed to you within three-to-five business days." Roxanne said as everyone got up. She gave them a warm smile as they began to file out of the room. "Go home. Relax. Try to recover. Get some therapy."
"God knows we'll need it," Duncan said as he left the room.
The five families stood at the gates to the airport.
"Well, our flight is calling," Geoff said, arm around Bridgette's waist. He looked fondly at Noah, Justin and Duncan. "Guess this is goodbye, dudes."
Duncan walked over to him and Geoff detached from his girlfriend so he could give the punk a hug.
"Goodbye for now," Duncan told him. "we'll meet up soon. Hang out and whatever."
Geoff smiled and the two parted. "Sounds like a plan."
As Duncan went to hug Bridgette, Justin and Noah shook Geoff's hand.
"Thanks for being there for me," Bridgette told Noah, enveloping him in a bone crushing hug.
"Urk, can't breathe," he choked out, weakly returning the hug.
"Sorry," she said, releasing him with a sheepish smile.
"We can't have me escaping the death island only to be asphyxiated by an over-emotional hippie." Noah said dryly.
Bridgette let out a chuckle, "I'll miss you too."
Justin and Bridgette did not say goodbye.
"Ciao, dudes!" Geoff called as he walked off with his family.
"We should get going to our flight as well," Noah's mother said.
"Ours takes off soon too, we should get to the gate." Justin added.
Reg sighed, "guess we should get going too."
The three boys shook hands with each other and went their separate ways.
An hour later, the five were homeward bound.
They had done it.
They had survived.
Execution Order: Izzy, Owen, Noah (Saved), Eva, DJ, Gwen, Tyler, Sadie, Cody, Ezekiel, Lindsay, Katie, Sierra, Harold, Bridgette (Saved), Trent, Alejandro, Heather, Courtney, Duncan (Escaped, Rescued), LeShawna, Beth, Geoff (Rescued).
Survivors: Noah, Bridgette, Duncan, Geoff, Justin.
There is still the epilogue to come, which will be out tomorrow afternoon/evening, which will focus more on the background of the show, what actually happened, the fates of Chris, Chef, Zolkoff, the crew, and the survivors. I'll give my closing thoughts on the story as a whole there, but the main story is wrapped up!
I hope no one is too disappointed by how...happy the ending is. I know some people were expecting a shootout but that was never on the cards. Remember, everyone on the island was buying that it was legal for them to be doing is, and most of them were unhappy with their jobs. The moment they found our they were breaking the law, they gave up ASAP, Chris included (though he did it more to save his own skin).
So yeah, so many people predicted Duncan and/or his father to die but nope, they both lived xD.
Yes, the theme of the story was "despair" but I still wanted it to have a happy ending...or as happy an ending as you can get.
So yeah, sit tight for the epilogue which'll be out tomorrow!
- Are you happy with the way things turned out?
- What will the fate of Chris be?
- Who do you wish had survived?
I'll catch you in the next, final chapter guys. Let me know what you thought of the finale!