Shay led Kylie to a small grove. It was covered in dead leaves, and everyone seemed to shuffle around, having nothing in particular to do. All the undead people stared blankly back at Kylie and David, the newcomers, as they came to see Eric. Kylie was shaking very badly; she was scared beyond words for her brother. She didn't want anything bad to happen to the innocent six year old, even though a feeling was growing inside her telling her that something had.
Eric sat in a tall tree, on a branch. There were no leaves, just twigs sticking blankly out, looking forlorn. From far away, Eric looked the same. But when Shay called his name, and he hopped from the branch easily 10 feet above the ground, there was a noticeable difference. His hair was messy, dark bruises under his eyes. He was incredibly pale and the bright green, always shining eyes that Kylie loved were gone, replaced by a dullness that nothing could change. Eric was one of them.
"Please, no. No, no, no!" Kylie whispered, staring blankly at her brother, who was watching her. Shay cackled. "Now Kylie. You understand my pain. I never got to say goodbye to my brother. But don't worry. Alex is in good hands, and so will Eric. He will be raised by me and Josh, unless, that is, someone else would like to join."
"And who would that be?" asked David. Shay stared at him as if the answer was obvious. "You, of course." she said. David's face pulled up into a tight, stressed out expression. He didn't look interested in the offer. This relieved Kylie; if she had David to give her strength, she could do anything.
But as David watched Shay pull her long, auburn locks out of the ponytail, that worry came back. The look on her boyfriend's face clearly said 'interested'. Would he have the willpower to resist her? Shay smiled as she pulled David into her trap, and pretty soon, he was standing next to her. Shay laughed as Josh hung his head and turned into the forest, defeated by his younger brother yet again.
"Now, Kylie. Take a seat." she motioned towards a dead tree stump, and Kylie obeyed, still shocked at David's choice. "Let me explain fully why we are here. We exist because we weren't done with you humans. You were all vain, harsh, and unforgiving. We all want revenge. You are our enemies, and we want to defeat you. I have a whole army in these very trees, and they are all planning revenge on someone out there. Your aunt Vicky would like to get back at her sister, Valery, for stealing her husband. I want to get back at you. Josh wants to get his ex-girlfriend, and the list goes on. Do you understand, Kylie? We all have someone we despise, and our victory is coming soon. I plan on seeing more of you. Now, I will give you a head start, just to be fair. Go out and tell the world of our plans, it's not like we care. We don't exist to the outsiders. They won't believe you, and you'll be all alone. Besides, it will take a while to finish up with David here." And with that, Shay gestured for Eric to follow her, as David drifted dreamily behind. And soon, Kylie was all alone.
She ran out of the forest (It was amazing how she knew her way around after being scared out of her mind.) bawling and screaming. She ran all the way home, a whopping 5.6 miles, and wasn't even out of breath. Bursting into her living room, her mother stood up. "Kylie!'' she screamed. "Mom! We need help! Shay has Eric and David! Aunt Vicky is -" Mrs. Brown looked at her daughter. "What the heck are you talking about Kylie? You go missing for two days, only to come back and tell me that you were off in LaLaLand, the whole time? Kylie! What is wrong with you? I've been worried sick! You can't do this to me, Kyles. You just can't. Understand? Now, I assume you were off being stupid looking for Eric, but the cops have a lead. They found footprints in the mud next to a river on the other side of the road. And we are to remain calm and at home in case he comes up. Got it? Now, go to your room." Kylie frowned. She knew the footprints had nothing to do with Eric or Shay, but she couldn't argue with her mom. It was useless.
She couldn't believe that she was actually in her mother's van driving to her Aunt Valery's home. How could her mother not believe her? Of course, she knew it sounded crazy, but it wasn't! At least her aunt was so scared of her sister that she would believe Kylie.
They arrived at Valery's apartment by 10:30 in the morning. Her aunt, as usual, was dressed in dark red skinny jeans and her dyed red hair was pulled up in a bun. She was the youngest of three sisters, and she was the most fun. Kylie loved going to Valery's house. She didn't see her as an aunt, but a friend. A best friend. "I'll be back to pick you up when you have your sanity back, Kylie. But with Eric missing, I just can't have you running off again. I love you!" her mother called as she drove off.
Valery laughed. "Oh, my. Kyles, what have you gotten yourself into this time?" The girl, in shorts and a tank top, looked at her aunt. "Well, my undead friend just stole my boyfriend, made my brother become undead, told me that she is going to lead her army of the undead to attack the world, and then told me to 'get my army together'." Valery looked at her niece, concerned. "Maybe I understand why Victoria brought you here."
Kylie sighed. "For the last time, I'm NOT trolling." Then she remembered some of Shay's words. "Shay said that Aunt Vicky was going to come for you. She wanted revenge, just like Shay wanted revenge on me."
Valery's face fell, suddenly serious. At least Kylie had some sort of 'army' going. She just needed a few more hundred people or so, and she would be set. That may take a while though.