Rachel had known that they wouldn't notice. She'd laughed and said it'd be like nothing ever happened. Their parents would finally approve of them when they were no longer there. Of course, she pointed out, none of them had been truly 'there' since the short-cut. They'd been elsewhere. Not home. Not with the family. Always at war. Even when they were sleeping. Even when they were dead.

Cassie wanted to disagree. More than anything she wanted to believe that in two days when she'd walk down into the kitchen her mum would look up from her morning coffee and know it wasn't her. That it was someone else pretending. But…. But last time the Chi had taken over the job of being Cassie: 'the Good Daughter' and Cassie: 'The Good Student', her parents had liked her more. Complained when the real Cassie came home and her grades returned to below par. Cassie wanted to believe….but…she knew otherwise.

Maybe he'd be happier. That was all Marco could think. Maybe…he could move on, get a girlfriend have a life outside the mourning. Maybe... Marco lay on the bed, arms behind his head, staring at the ceiling. He could hear his father singing off key in the kitchen as he made lunch. Marco closed his eyes and savored the moment. Trying to commit every detail to memory. Because he knew soon, very soon it would be all he had. A memory. Like his mother. Like his father. Like his family. He tried to crack a silent joke. But the only thing Marco felt cracking was himself. At that moment, serenaded by his father's terrible voice, Marco began to cry.

Jake just stared across the dinner table at his brother. Tom; noticing the vacant expression, gave the boy a smirk behind his fork. Jake knew they wouldn't notice the difference. They hadn't the first time round, no chance they would the second. He knew it was best that way…but…

"Honey," Jake's mother looked across the table to her youngest son brooding in his chair. She was worried about him. He never used to be like this. So closed off, so distant. "You've hardly touched your dinner." Jake just stared at the woman for a moment. Stating the fact as if it were important. As if whether or not he ate dinner would cause world panic. As if it mattered. Without speaking Jake looked back down to the curry he'd been playing with. It was already going cold.

"I had a late lunch." he lied. It was easy to lie now. So much easier than telling the truth.

His mum looked like she was about to say something else, but a stern expression from Jake's father cut her off and the table fell back into silence.

Jake began staring vacantly at Tom again, trying to imagine the Yerk that smothered his brain; choking him into silence. Jake tried to imagine what Tom was doing right now. Was he screaming? Was he begging? Was he silent?

"What?" the Yerk asked, rising a cautious hand to Tom's mouth. "Do I have something in my teeth?"