Wednesday, August 31, 2011


"Yes, Mom. Toby's coming home with me. That's okay, right?"

Will turned away, trying to ignore Moira's phone conversation. So, she was taking her boyfriend home with her to meet her mother. Great. He supposed that was really it for him then. No chance now. Moira's mom would love Toby, just like Moira--and everyone else--seemed to. Will's eyes narrowed as he stared at Toby, who was on the phone as well. It sounded like he was arguing. Apparently, Toby's mom wasn't too happy about him going to California to be with Moira instead of going home.

"Hey, man. What are your plans for the next couple of months?" Jesse's voice broke into Will's seething thoughts.

"I don't know." Will shrugged. He couldn't go home. His parents had freaked and kicked him out once they found out about his shapeshifting abilities. They couldn't throw him on the show fast enough.

"Want to come with us?"

"You guys going home?"

"Don't know yet. Probably."

"Uhhh . . . yeah, okay. Sounds cool." Will had never been to L.A. Now was as good a time as any. "Let's do it."

© Brea Essex 2011 ~ No part of this site (written or artwork) may be reproduced in anyway whatsoever without express written consent by Brea Essex.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Voting Time Part 2

           (Continued from Team Introv3rsion)

           Moira looked at Toby. "We're done for three months? We get to go home?"
            He shrugged. "I guess so." Though he didn't really want to go home.
            "Ummm . . . do you want to come home with me?" Moira blurted.
            "You want to bring me home?" He swallowed hard, unsure of what to think about this. He loved her, wanted to be with her, but what about her family? What would they think? What would they do?
            She blushed. "Sorry. Only if you want to. I have to go home. My mom will want to see me. I'd like to introduce you to her, if that's okay with you. I know she'd love to meet you. Besides, I don't really want to leave you now that we've actually gotten to be together," she finished in a rush.
            "My mom will want me to come home to see her, but that doesn't mean I'm going to do it." He shrugged but let the issue go. If it was what she wanted, then he would do it because he felt so strongly for her.
            Moira pulled away from him a little. "If you don't want to, I totally understand. I probably shouldn't have said anything. Ummm . . . I guess I'll go." She started to stand.
            He frowned when she got up to leave. "Oh...I...well...fine." He whispered and stared down at his hands. "Never mind then."
            She stopped. "Never mind what? I'm letting you off the hook. If you don't want to go back to California with me, then it's okay. No pressure. I'm not going to hate you or anything because you're not ready to meet my mom. I totally understand."
            He shook his head. "Just never mind I guess. I never said I didn't want to meet her. It just wasn't what I was thinking." Or what he was sure he needed. "The only thing I know is that I want to be where you are. If you are going to be at home, then I will be too."
            "Really? You actually WANT to go?" She thought about it for a minute. "Would it make you feel better if we went somewhere else?"
            "I don't want to go home. What's for me at home Moira? My over protective bitchy mom who tries to control my life and doesn't care about what I want, just how she looks in front of all of her friends?" He didn't care if he said it out loud or if was caught on film. She needed to know. "There's no place for me to go. No one else for me to be with. If that's where you want to be then...I'll be there."
            Moira wanted to cry. She had no idea it was that bad for Toby at home. He had never really talked about it before. "Well, my mom's not like that. She's like, the complete opposite of controlling. She'd be more than fine with you coming to stay--as long as you want. In fact, she's been asking me when you were coming to visit. I'd really love for you to come too. I promise, it will be so much better than at your house."
            "Alright. I'll put off my plans to see the world for another time,” he said with a small laugh.
            "You want to go somewhere else? I said we could go somewhere else."
            "I said I wanted to be wherever you were going to be," he pointed out.
            "I know, but I don't HAVE to go home. It would just be the easiest place to go. No planning, no cost, and we can lounge on the beach all day."
            "Then we can do that," he said with a nod. "I told you Moira, what else am I going to do?"
            "I don't know, go to Europe?" she quipped.
            "Or Asia or Africa or Australia or anywhere, still not the point I'm trying to make. I'd be alone. Without you. I'd rather not..."
            She placed a finger against his lips to quiet him. "Don't even think it. You're coming home with me." She smiled. "I insist."
            "Alright," he said and nodded.
            It was then that Moira realized that both of their teams plus Chance were still gathered around the fire, listening to every word. "Ummm . . ." 
            He raised an eyebrow. "Um?"
            "I think everyone's listening to us."
            He shrugged and kissed her. "So?  You got something to say people?"
            She laughed against Toby's lips and kissed him harder, wrapping her arms around his neck. If he didn't care, then she didn't either.
            He held her close.

            "Ah young love," Chance said. "I see these two aren't wasting any time, so why are the rest of you?"
            "We want to know who the MVPs were," Lily said.
            "Give us a moment to tally the results." Chance said with a rather forced smile.
            Moira rolled her eyes. "As if SHE would be MVP," she whispered to Toby. "She didn't do a damn thing!"
            Toby laughed and chance consulted one of the producers for a moment, and then returned. "Alright we have the mvps. Team introv3rsion is Mr. Coty “T” Ranover. Congrats. And from Team Promethiad . . . Adrian Rayne! Congratulations to both of you."
            "Is he serious? I did more than he did," Moira told Toby.
            He laughed. "Yeah I don't even know."
            "Well, that's it folks," Chance said. "Your instructions for next season will be mailed to you. See you in three months!" He disappeared into the trees.

            Adrian, Lily and Jesse immediately headed in the other direction without saying goodbye. Will lingered, but he took one look at Moira standing with Toby and left silently.

            "So, are you ready to see California?" Moira asked.
            Toby said goodbye to the others with a quick wave. Ipod hugged him and then ran off to the other two. He sighed and nodded at her. "Yeah. I'm ready."
            "Let's get the heck out of this jungle and back to the hotel. I'll call my mom from there and let her know we're coming."
            "Right away? Or should we finish off the week here...together?" he asked softly.
            "Sounds like . . . paradise." She laughed at her own joke. "I can wait a few days to call my mom." She raised her voice a little. "In case someone's filming this, Mom I promise I'll be home soon. Sorry I'm not calling you immediately."
            He laughed. "I'm pretty sure they edit things. It'll air later." He kissed her and sighed.
            "Just my luck, they'll leave that part in and Mom will be annoyed at me for not coming home—and bringing you with me—as soon as I could." She held out a hand to him. "Want to go back now?"
            "Go back?" he asked curiously.
            "To the hotel. We have to at least get our stuff."
            He nodded. "Alright. Sounds good."

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Episode 11: Enter the Volcano

            Adrian, Lily and Moira couldn’t believe what they were staring at: an active volcano. “Is the show trying to kill us all off?” Adrian wondered out loud.
            “This isn’t fresh,” Moira said, pointing to the cooled lava that covered the ground in front of them. “Well, it’s fairly fresh, but it isn’t going to burn us.”
            Lily rolled her eyes. “Thank you, Ms. Science Channel.”
            “At least one of us knows what’s going on.”
            Adrian held up his hands. “Don’t start, you two. I don’t have the patience for your bickering today. My best friend is in there, along with Will. We need to get them out.”
            They wandered near the base of the volcano, trying to find their teammates. The map provided by the show said that they were in the right place. “Here!” Adrian yelled suddenly.
            The two girls hurried over to where he was. “There’s a fissure here.” He shone his flashlight into the gap. “I think it’s big enough for us to get in. Maybe they’re inside.”
            “Ew, gross! I’m not going in there,” Lily proclaimed.
            “How freaking selfish can you be?” Moira asked. “Jesse and Will are both in there. How would you feel if it was you and they didn’t want to come in after you?”
            Lily sighed. “Fine! I’ll go in the stupid hole in the rock.”
            Something whooshed past their heads as they stood staring into the divide. It hit the ground behind them. Adrian wandered over and picked it up. He swore under his breath. “They’re shooting tranq darts at us!”
            “Huh?” Lily and Moira asked in unison.
            Adrian held up the object. “Tranquilizer darts. The freaking Hunters are here.” The girls stood and stared at him. “Run!” he yelled, heading for them and pushing them into the tunnel in the rock.
            Once inside the volcano, the shooting stopped. They shone their flashlights all around, trying to find Jesse and Will. “What I wouldn’t give for Jesse’s fire power right now,” Adrian muttered under his breath.
            “Are you crazy?” Moira asked. “Fire in a volcano? Yeah, that’s a good idea.”
            Adrian looked sheepish. “You’re probably right.”
            They turned a corner and saw them, bound together back to back. Both were gagged and appeared unconscious. Adrian held a light on them while Lily and Moira knelt down and tried to shake them awake. “Hurry!” he whispered feverishly.
            “I don’t see you trying to help,” Moira shot back as she began to untie the ropes.
            “I just—” he broke off as his light caught movement in the shadows. A Hunter appeared and grabbed Lily from where she crouched near the ground. She shrieked and disappeared. The Hunter struggled with his invisible burden, but started to carry her off.
            “Let go of my sister!” Adrian bellowed.
            Moira stood as the last of the ropes fell away from Jesse and Will’s unconscious forms. They had to act fast. I have an idea, she sent to Lily and then to Adrian. Lily, when I tell you, raise your legs out of the way. She concentrated on Adrian. When I say go, shock the guy. “Now!” she shouted.
            She hoped Lily had moved her legs. Her own foot shot out and she kicked the Hunter as hard as she could. She connected with his knee and she felt it snap. At the same moment, an electrical charge flared up in Adrian’s hand and he hit the Hunter on the back with it. The man cried out and fell to the ground with a thud. There was a second thud, which they could only assume was Lily.
            “I’ll carry Will, you two try and help Jess. He’s smaller,” Adrian said.
            He stooped and threw Will over his shoulder in a fireman’s carry. The girls got on either side of Jesse and wrapped his arms around their shoulders. They somehow managed to stand and began to half carry and half drag Jesse toward the exit, with Adrian following.
            The ground beneath their feet began to shake. “What the . . .” Adrian began.
            “Run!” Moira yelled. “It’s getting ready to explode again soon.”
            They ran, carrying their burdens to the car. Jesse began to regain consciousness and fought against them. “Jesse, you have to let us help you,” Lily told him.
            “Lil? What happened?” he asked.
            “Don’t ask questions, just run.”
            He let go of the girls and began to run beside them.
            When they reached the car, Jesse helped Adrian pack the still unconscious Will into the backseat. They all jumped into the car, but it wouldn’t start.
            “Come on!” Adrian yelled as he turned the key in frustration.
            “Adrian?” Moira asked.
            “Your electricity might come in handy here.”
            He hit his forehead with the heel of his hand. “Of course. How could I be so stupid?” He concentrated on his hand until a ball of electricity glowed there. He pressed it to the steering column, near the keyhole. The car roared to life. He quickly put the car into gear and peeled away, just as the volcano began to spew lava.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Episode 10: Disappearance

            Moira groaned as she sat up. She had stayed up way too late talking to Toby online the night before. She had wanted to go to his room to see him, but she didn’t want to make her team any madder than they already were. Luckily, Toby had understood about the whole thing with Will. She had been worried that he might get mad, but he seemed to get that she hadn’t wanted Will to kiss her. He had actually laughed when she told him that she kicked Will.
            They were staying in a suite, which was a nice change from the tiny two bed hotel rooms they had previously inhabited. Moira stretched, relishing in the fact that she hadn’t had to share a bed with Lily this time—Lily who was currently storming into her room, her face as white as a sheet.
            “What’s wrong?” Moira asked. She immediately sensed that it wasn’t a good time to yell at Lily for bothering her.
            “Jesse’s gone,” Lily informed her. “So is Will.”
            “What do you mean gone?”
            Adrian came up behind Lily. “They’re gone. We searched the whole room. No sign of them. The beds don’t even look slept in.”
            Moira crawled out of bed and wandered into the front room of the suite, the other two following her like lost puppy dogs. She glanced around the room and spotted a manila envelope propped up on the table behind the couch. She crossed the room and picked it up. “Um, hello? Didn’t you notice this?” she asked, waving it in the air.
            Adrian and Lily both shook their heads. She rolled her eyes at them and ripped open the envelope, spilling the contents onto the table. There was a DVD and quite a few maps.
            She popped the DVD into the hotel room’s player and turned on the TV. Chance Cagney immediately appeared on the screen.
            “Aloha Promethiads! I trust you’re enjoying your little stay in paradise. I’m sure you’re wondering where your teammates are this morning. You see, the Hunters rounded up anyone who left the room. I hope you still have your gear from your trip to the desert, because you’re going to need some of it. Now, grab your maps and head on out. You wouldn’t want to see your teammates laid out on a stretcher, would you?”
            The screen went blank and they faced each other. Lily started crying. “Are they going to die?”
            “Not if we get there soon, Lil,” Adrian said. He headed into his room and upended his bag, dumping the contents onto his bed. He sifted through them and stuck a compass, a water bottle, a first aid kit and a tube of sunscreen into his bag. He came back into the front room and started shoving maps in with the other items. “Get dressed,” he ordered the girls.
            Lily and Moira silently headed for their respective rooms to change. “Don’t forget your water bottles,” Adrian called after them. “I have a feeling it’s going to get hot.”


© Brea Essex 2011 ~ No part of this site (written or artwork) may be reproduced in anyway whatsoever without express written consent by Brea Essex.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Episode 9: Hawaiian Fun?

Moira hurled her bag onto the hotel bed. “What the heck is your problem?”
“You know what my problem is,” Lily fumed.
“Look, it wasn’t your decision to make.”
“If it was, you would have been off the team. Why don’t you just go on your boyfriend’s team? In fact, maybe you should just go find him right now.”
Will stepped in between the girls and pushed them apart. He looked at Lily and jerked his head in the direction of the door. She rolled her eyes and left the room, followed by Adrian and Jesse.
“Thanks,” Moira said.
Will nodded, but remained silent.
“I hope I haven’t hurt you too badly,” she continued hesitantly. “I tried to tell you that I have a boyfriend, but you just wouldn’t—”
Her next words were cut off by Will’s mouth pressed against hers. She tried to pull away, but he gripped the back of her head in one hand. His other arm encircled her waist. She was effectively locked against him. She pressed her lips together rigidly, reached back with one foot, and kicked him sharply in the shin.
Will released her. “Ow! What the hell was that for?”
“What the hell was that for? Are you kidding me? You kissed me. I’ve told you a million times that I’m not interested. I’m in love with Toby. You can’t do anything to change that.” She headed for the door, but paused in the doorway. “And don’t try to change it. As of now, don’t speak to me unless it’s absolutely necessary for our team’s safety.”
She slammed the door behind her, leaving Will standing in the empty hotel room alone. She leaned up against the wall. She shouldn’t have stayed in the room to talk to him. How was she going to explain this to Toby?

© Brea Essex 2011 ~ No part of this site (written or artwork) may be reproduced in anyway whatsoever without express written consent by Brea Essex. 

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Episode 8: The One Where Everyone Finds Out Part 2

This is a collaboration with J.F. Jenkins. To read the first part, please visit:

“Its a game.” Toby rolled his eyes and watched as Lily started to freak out. “What the hell is her problem?”
“I have no idea. She was really timid and whiny at first, but now she's turning into a complete psycho.”
“Maybe I should kidnap you and you can come join me?” He teased.
“Sounds good to me! I'll go wherever you want to take me.”
"Maybe we can escape Escape!” He liked this idea, running away from it all with her. What better place than paradise? He was about to continue when Lily came back with some guys.
“The guys aren't happy,” Lily said smugly. 
Moira looked past her. Adrian looked pissed, Jesse annoyed. As to Will…he looked disappointed. Well, she had tried to tell him to leave her alone. What did he think, that she was going to leave Toby for him? Not going to happen. “I really don't care.”
“You've betrayed us, Moira,” Adrian said. 
She laughed. “What is this? This is a game. Get over yourselves.”
“You don't deserve to be on the team anymore. You're consorting with the enemy.”
“The enemy?” she asked incredulously. 
“Choose,” Jesse ordered. “Us or him.”
“I choose him. I'll always choose him,” she said. 
It took a moment to let everything sink in. “Aren't you guys being a little over dramatic? The enemy? Wow.” He was about to say something else when he noticed Coty approaching. Wait; no it was Cory because the necklace was glowing. “Is there a problem?” he asked, folding his arms in front of him as if trying to be intimidating.
Now it looked like one of Toby's teammates was getting involved. If they kicked him off the team too, they really could run away together. Better to just get introductions out of the way. She stuck a hand out toward him. “Hi, I'm Moira. Toby's girlfriend.”
Cory raised an eyebrow. “So this is your cutie huh? Nice to meet you.” He offered his hand for a shake. “But what are you doing here though?”
When she took his hand to shake, she felt a jolt. It wasn't a good jolt, like when Toby touched her. She could feel two separate thought patterns roiling around in his mind. This must be the one with two people in the same body. She pulled her hand back quickly. “I'm on the show. Our team's being sent to Hawaii too. At least, the team I used to be on. Apparently, I've been voted off the island before we even reached it.” She gestured at her teammates who were still crowding the aisle behind him.
Cory raised an eyebrow. “Well hey, I bet we could fit you in with us if they want to be little shits about it.”
Toby smirked. This is why he liked Cory though. Then he saw Ryan coming over and he frowned. She was the difficult one.
“Why is everyone pow-wowing over here? Is there a problem?” Cory then filled her in and she stared at the other team with a raised eyebrow. “If I had known this was our competition I wouldn't have been so worried.” She then stared at Moira. “But I don't know if I’d consider you useful. You look more like a distraction seeing as how he already is losing sight of our goals to be with you.” She glared at Toby.
What a bitch. Toby really hadn't been kidding about here. She could be a bitch too. I'll show her how useful I can be, Moira thought. She reached into Ryan's mind--and sent a little shock through it. 
Ryan gasped. “What was that?”
Cory shook his head. “I don't know, but maybe you should be nicer to people.”
Moira couldn't help but laugh. “I think I could get to like you!” She looked at Ryan. “You, not so much. I think you'd fit in on my team, though. They're used to manipulative bitchiness. Maybe we should trade places.”
Ryan snorted. “I'm not manipulative. Id watch it before you say anything about people you barely know.”
“Speak for yourself. You've already decided that I'm a useless distraction.”
“Yeah, you're already distracting my team member,” Ryan pointed out.  Cory put his hands on her shoulders. 

“Chill. Look, I think everyone needs to calm down.”
“I agree,” Moira said. “Especially you idiots.” She looked pointedly at her team. 
“We should let her stay on the team,” Will said quietly. 
“You've got to be kidding me!” Lily exclaimed. 
“Look, we need her. Besides, it's not her fault. She was dating the guy before this show even started.”
“Yeah, no shit,” Toby said and rolled his eyes.  “Besides, if you think I'm going to let anything bad happen to her because of some game . . .”
Ryan glared at him. “So you'd sabotage us for her?”
“Ry? Chill.” Cory stressed the point.  “All of us have something to lose here.” He looked around at the group. “Personally, I think it's refreshing to see some positive emotions for a change instead of all the negativity. It's good to remember what I'm fighting for.” He stared at Ryan for a moment and then shook his head.
“So, what? We work together?” Moira asked. 
Cory shook his head. “Not unless we're supposed to. I just don't think we need to be flipping our shit over two kids who love each other.”
She smiled. “I agree.” She looked at the rest of her team. “Can you guys handle that?”
They nodded hesitantly. She glanced at Ryan. “Can you deal with this too?”
Ryan threw up her hands and walked away. Toby rolled his eyes a little.
Moira's team started to head back to their seats. Adrian paused at looked at the kid with the glowing necklace. “You know, there's something weird about you. It's like you're in the wrong body or something.” He shook his head and walked away. 
Moira laughed. “I'm not sure which one you are, sorry. But thank you. I won't forget how you stuck up for us.” She looked at Toby. “But what about the other two? You know, the brother,” she waved at the guy still standing by them, “and the telepathic girl. Are they going to be okay with this?”
Cory rolled his eyes at Adrian. He then shrugged at Moira. “We're talking now. He's not sure, but there's nothing to be done about it.”
“Do you call the shots or something?” she asked curiously.
Cory winked at her. “Something like that.” 

Toby nodded a thank you and put his head on Moira's shoulder.  “We'll figure this out.”
Moira snuggled up against Toby again. After all the drama, she felt exhausted. She closed her eyes. “Wake me when we reach Hawaii,” she murmured.
He nodded, but closed his eyes too.  “I promise.”