“Wait a second," Four says. I turn toward him, wondering which version of Four I'll see now-the one who scolds me, or the one who climbs Ferris wheels with me. He smiles a little, but the smile doesn't spread to his eyes, which look less tense and worried.
"You belong here, you know that?" he says. "You belong with us. It'll be over soon, so just hold on, okay?"
He scratches behind his ear and looks away, like he's embarrassed by what he said.
I stare at him. I feel my heartbeat everywhere, even in my toes. I feel like doing something bold, but I could just as easily walk away. I am not sure which option is smarter, or better. I am not sure that I care.
I reach out and take his hand. His fingers slide between mine. I can't breathe.
I stare up at him, and he stares down at me. For a long moment, we stay that way. Then I pull my hand away and run after Uriah and Lynn and Marlene. Maybe now he thinks I'm stupid, or strange. Maybe it was worth it.”