The texts

One week ago….

My name Emily Collins and this is the most haunting story of my life that will forever give me nightmares.

My life so far had been great, apart from the fact that my mom had died a few years previous. My dad was very hard working, always at work apart from May, moms last month. We didn't know much about her, apart from that she made a lot of money and had an extremely busy job; dad wouldn't tell us what it was. But even so, we got on with our lives. We lived in a three bedroom home with a big backyard. Our uncle lived with us too, my mom's brother. Life was really great until last Thursday….

It was a Thursday evening in May and I was at home with my best friend Kelly and my twin brother Max.

Kelly is quite short with bright blonde hair that reaches her hips, light skin, and shocking blue eyes. On the other hand, there is me and Max. We share our olive skin tone and pale grey eyes, that's where it stops. He has chocolate brown hair like my mom whereas I have black curly hair like my dad. I have a birthmark in the shape of a heart on my neck, Max has lots of freckles (Girls he had dated loved them). Max is really tall and loves sports; I am just below the average height and would rather stay indoors, in my pajamas and get lost in a book.

We were in my bedroom listening to our favorite band, Heltic Glow while going over our lines for our school play on Friday; Hamilton. When Kelly and I were seven, we were introduced to drama and acting and have continued with it ever since. Living room plays, make-believe and during the summer we would take the small wooden crates that were scattered around my back garden out the front and make a stage out of them and perform skits we wrote with her dad, Lucas. He would say "toiminta" (action in Finnish, as he was from Finland) for our plays and was an actor himself so that was cool. He taught us Finnish too, not too hard if you try hard enough. As I was saying, the play Hamilton, I got the part as Eliza and Kelly got the part as Angelica. Since we were younger we have been inseparable, a package that if you tried to separate you would find yourself in a rubbish bin nearby in the time-space of don't even think of trying that again. So there we were, practicing lines for our roles. "ohmigosh, ohmigosh, Emmy! I'm going to mess up!" Kelly said in a frantic state. "No you won't" Max comforted her. He had always looked up to her, she had been through so much over the last few years and her parents were still fighting over custody for her and her seventeen-year-old brother Adam. Adam was tall, unlike his sister. He had the same light hair but with bright green eyes. All the girls in my year were into him, I didn't find myself interested because I've known him since I can remember and have always seen him as a brother. "You're going to do great," Max said once again reassuring her "Thanks Max, you are gonna do a really good job as Aaron Burr" she replied. My brother also signed up for the auditions and got a role but I think it was only to go get closer to Kelly. "We got to be leaving soon," Adam said from the corner of the room. "Yeah, I know, just another two minutes. I can't believe it is tomorrow" she babbled "Yeah, this is going to be a bit hectic," I said but really, I didn't mind. I loved the nervous rush you get before ShowTime and then everything seems to fall into place, my nerves vanish into thin air, the stage beams with lights that make it look marvelous, and then these words of amazement fill my head saying you belong here. I believe those words like you believe your parents when they say don't go near the fire, it will burn you. My heart goes on fire when I set foot on the stage, but it doesn't burn me, it ignites me with this amazing feeling some may call confidence. That's what acting is to me. "Well I better get going, we have an hour's bus ride to get to my dad's house, but I will see you tomorrow at school and then… THE PLAY!" she beamed. I checked my watch, it was quarter past six, huh I thought dinner in ten. Good, because I was starving after all that practice. Adam walked over to me and said "I really need to talk to you Emmy, Alone" The other two heard this and walked out of the room. "Wow this is gonna be hard, but Emmy?" he said trying to grab my attention. Crap, no romance. As lovely as it is to read and write about, I couldn't deal with it myself. Don't get me wrong, being sixteen, I have been on a few dates alright but I gave up on it since, well, you know, I'm not really good at the kissing bit. I could kind of predict what was going to happen next, as anyone would I guess. But really I couldn't take it. "Adam, is this a love confession?" I asked in this tiny voice. His face went bright red "Maybe…" "Tomorrow, the old fair hut, nine pm. I am really sorry if this is kind of rude but we have listeners" I said in a quiet, gentle voice. "Okay," he said clearly embarrassed. We left the room and found the others outside near the door. "Told you" I mumbled to Adam. We went downstairs and got some club lemonade, and then Kelly and Adam had to go. They headed for the bus stop shortly afterward. I went into the kitchen where I smelt shepherd's pie and there it was, on the table, lucky guess. Uncle Peter (my mom's brother who lived with us) was sitting at the table. I sat down at my usual seat and gazed out the window at the back garden, at the old swing set Max and I used to play on when we were younger, at the outdoor table we'd have dinner at during the summer, at the flowers that gently danced in the light breeze, in a daze. Completely lost in thought I didn't notice my dad talking to me "Emmy?" he asked snapping back to reality. "Oh, hi, what's up?" I asked in a state of confusion. "I thought we could have dinner outside? Yeah?" he inquired. "Yeah, that's a good idea" I responded. I knew why he was suggesting this, trying to make an effort to comfort my brother and me. In two days it will be five years since my mother passed away, and it was really hard for him to bring it up. We were only nine when she had a heart attack, and yet we can both remember it as if it happened yesterday. "I'm going to set the table," I say to break the silence "Okay, I'll tell Max," he said as he wandered off. I went outside with mats, knives, and forks and laid them out neatly then I went back inside and grabbed the plates with dinner on them and set them down on the mats. I walked back inside to hear muffled sobs coming from the living room. I sneaked over to the slightly open door and saw my brother in my dad's arms crying. He was hurting.

We all sat down for dinner. It was awkward because no one could find the right words to bring up mom's Memorial Day. "So Max, Emmy, got all your lines ready your big night tomorrow?" Peter asked trying to break the uncomfortable silence. "All good," he said, and the night went on

Later that evening, I headed up to bed. It was half ten and I wanted to get plenty of rest for tomorrow. I lay down and tried to find sleep but failed. I was thinking about Adam, about what he said earlier. What would dad think of me going out with a year older boy? Surely not much, right? He'd known Adam and Kelly's parents even before I was born, so I hope he wouldn't mind. I just couldn't sleep. I decided to go on my computer for a while, update my poetry blog. I went online and began typing. There were beautiful poems up that I was very proud of. But then I noticed a new account pops up. I check his work out, he as a writer, a beautiful one…

I want to hold her hand,

But she pulls away,

And I'm sure if I tried to make a move,

She wouldn't want the same.

It was so sweet; the users' name was Mr. Above. It was really good, the rest of his poems I mean. But it was really late now, I went back to bed.

I was in bed for about an hour and a half when my phone buzzed. I open it and find a text from a withheld number saying:

Give me the information on satellite

Asclepius or she gets it.

And had a picture of Kelly gagged and bound by rope to a pole and held at gunpoint! Adam was in the background with tears streaming down his face, cut all over him. He wouldn't go down without a fight. Kelly and Adam looked so scared; I didn't know what information he was talking about. Then he sent another text saying:

Don't even bother ignoring it; I know you're awake,

I put caffeine in your chocolate milk while you went

To get your family for dinner.

Hand it over tomorrow at Rockfield park

There is a big Ferris wheel

One of my men will be there to collect it

You got 24 hours

Tell anyone and we'll know, keep it a secret.

Oh no! What was I going to do! This was terrible. The guy who supposedly like likes me and my best friend. I needed someone to help. Well, I had a brother who was up for helping, but would they really know if I told him? Surely they were just bluffing, Right? Bluffing or not, I couldn't do this on my own. I creep across the landing to his room and knocked on the door. "Max?" I called quietly. "Uh huh," he mumbled back clearly not being able to sleep either. "I need your help, Can you keep a secret?"