The True Emotion Games

(Just so you know, this has nothing, I repeat nothing to do with the Hunger Games. It just happens to have a similar name) When Tess's boyfriend Sam dies, she is broken. And when her ex goes on a killing spree of all of her family, aiming for her next, she feels she has nothing else to live for. But right before she decides to end it all, she joins the True Emotion Games, a competition set up by Love/Hate (after all, they really are the same thing). She now has a purpose, a meaning. Find out what the True Emotion Games are (it's in the prologue, you don't even have to read more, I swear) and how Tess copes with them in the True Emotion Games.

BTW, if you leave a comment telling me the name of your movella, I'll definitely read it! Please give feedback also, if you decide to read it. :)


5. Chapter 4: Secrets and Ana

Chapter 4

Tess found herself subconsciously drifting towards Jason but only realized when she felt their shoulders touching. The black haze was beginning to clear up, and leaving a person in the middle. It scared her even more because the haze/person was gliding in the direction of Tess and Jason. Fifteen feet away. Fourteen feet. Thirteen. Twelve. Eleven. Ten. Nine. Eight. Seven. Six. Five. Four feet away, and Tess started scrambling to get up but Jason pulled on her arm and wouldn't let her get up. She desperately tugged away, glancing at Jason every few seconds and wondering what the heck he was thinking and at the clearing haze every few seconds wondering how much it would hurt when it hit them. But it slowed down at two feet and halted in front of them about a foot and a half. Tess breathed a sigh of relief that sent her bangs up and drifting down again and into her eyes. She wrenched her hand out of Jason's and wiped her palm on her ripped jeans, finding it sweaty. After a moment, the haze completely cleared and a woman who looked to be about twenty years old, in her young twenties, stood there with her arms crossed and her lips pursed. She had purple eyes, which Tess assumed were contacts and brown hair pulled into a messy bun with choppy bangs that hung just above her eyebrows. She wasn't tall, although she wasn't short and she wasn't big or small. She was just average.

"Ana, what are you doing here?" Jason asked in a pained voice pronouncing her name like awe-nuh. He spoke her name with familiarity that sparked a bit of jealousness in Tess that she wanted to smack down. She did NOT like him, in that way at least, she told herself forcefully.
"Jason," Ana replied tightly. Her eyes landed on Tess and looked over her. Tess straightened her posture self consciously and gave Ana a weak smile. Ana just scowled slightly and looked back to Jason leaving Tess feeling insulted and annoyed.
"I said, what are you doing here?" Tess was very aware of all of the people in the room staring at the exchange and she bit her lip nervously.
"I'm allowed to be here, you know!" Ana exclaimed lifting her chin up.
"Yes, I know but why?"
"I was notified of a situation," she said, and waited for his response. His eyes were directed downward to the floor.
"Oh. That," he replied quietly.
"Well, I just was told to notify you that we expect a full report about it on Monday." It was Saturday. Monday was soon. What were they talking about anyways?, Tess thought. Jason gave a single, brief nod, still looking at the floor to Ana. She took one last look at Tess and then disappeared. Like just literally disappeared. One minute she was there, the next second she wasn't. Tess couldn't believe it. What the heck was that? Everything in the room was back to normal, giving no evidence that Ana had even been there. The people were all turned forward again and Carl was still eyeing them, annoyed. Had she imagined the whole thing? Then, Tess turned to Jason and saw that he was still looking at the floor. No, she hadn't imagined it. Right as she was about to ask Jason what the conversation was about and who was Ana, Carl's booming voice carried across the room, interrupting her.
"Okay, so first order of business today has to do with the devices that were given to you. Do you all have them?" Tess knew she wasn't holding Vee in her hand. She reached into her pocket. No Vee. She checked the other pocket. No Vee. Panic started to cloud her thoughts. The other pockets didn't have Vee either. Tess looked in her Ugg boots but Vee wasn't there. She looked up at Carl who was staring at her with a twisted smile. She didn't want to seem weak so she smirked at him. After a few moments of them staring each other down, Carl finally tore his gaze away from hers.
"As some of you might notice," he glanced obviously at Tess, "your device might not be with you. To get your device, you must simply think: Device in hand. Or device in pocket. Or wherever you want it to show up." Tess nodded slightly and though firmly, device in hand. And suddenly, Vee materialized into her palm slowly. Tess watched in awe and grinned to herself in victory. Carl clapped his hands together to gain the group's attention and it worked. All eyes were on him again. He smiled in an arrogant way, seeming to notice that fact and began giving instructions again. Tess glanced at Jason before Carl started and saw that he was holding his own device up to his ear like it was a phone and speaking softly to it, gazing out the glass window out to a plane flying by noiselessly. Tess didn't think that planes could be quiet, but who was she to think that, while she was sitting in a room where people can teleport and when Love/Hate is actually real (as in can be a real form). She tilted her head to the side, in his direction, straining to hear what he was saying but he wasn't loud enough for her to hear. Ugh.
"Okay, so now with your devices, please say 'meeting one' to them. They are voice activated, only for you, so the other people in the room won't cause your device not to hear you. If you were one person in the stands at the Superbowl, your device would still be able to pick you out and operate under your commands." Carl smiled at Tess and she looked around the room, realizing how many dirty looks she was getting from other teenage girls. One girl stuck out to her, though, out of the twenty that scowled at her. This girl was tall, blonde and gorgeous. She wore a jeans that hung low on her hips, a pair of brown riding boots, a black tank top that didn't reach to the top of her jeans, a red silk scarf, a little red bow that was placed cutely in her hair that had been pulled into a messy yet styled bun, and a hateful glare. Tess unintentionally gulped. The girl flicked her hazel eyes over Tess before smirking and turning back to Carl. Tess shuddered. She hoped she wouldn't have to compete against her for some guy's love or hate for the games. She wouldn't stand a chance. But maybe true love or hate wasn't about the looks... Tess was tugged out of her thoughts by a chorusing of voices all repeating the same phrase: "meeting one". She quickly put Vee up to her mouth and copied what everyone else did. A piece of paper was ejected from the slot and along with it came a small pen that tumbled onto her lap. How had they both fit in the device? The pen was almost as big as the slot itself! What type of world was this?
"As you can see, you have been given a piece of paper and a pen." His eyes swept the crowd and for once, didn't even linger on Tess. Thankfully. "The pen is automatically programmed to... Never mind, just try writing something yourself." He grinned at himself while bringing his own device up to his mouth. He whispered something quickly and then looked at everyone's faces, waiting for their reactions. Tess turned to Jason who was looking at her. He rose his eyebrow. She shrugged and picked up the pen. She started to write down her name but what came down on the paper was NOT her name. Instead of 'Tess Wilden' was 'Carl is the greatest person ever!! :)'. She looked up sharply at Jason and shot him a quizzical look which he returned with the same amount of confusion. At the same time, Carl let out a genuine laugh that matched the grin that spread across his entire face. But his laugh and smile weren't contagious as Jason's were. Tess watched him blankly as did many of the contestants. Only about fifty laughed too, and twenty of them were the girls that had shot Tess dirty looks. Stupid idiots. Couldn't they see what an annoying little ape he was? And yes, she did say ape. Tess thought he wasn't humane. And judging from the expression on Jason's face, his thoughts were along the same lines. They both eyed Carl until he finally wiped his eyes, and his laughter halted.
"As you may have noticed, the pens are automatically programmed to write a certain thing, no matter what you try to write. This is so you can take notes on what I'm about to tell you, and write down the correct thing. Nifty, ain't it? I swear, if schools used these, the kids would be so much smarter..." This earned a giggle from the the teens that had liked him. Tess blinked bluntly. It hadn't even been a joke. Seriously. Idiots. He smiled at them and they waved in response. The most enthusiastic was the girl who had stood out before. What was her deal? Carl turned to glance at Tess and she gave him an amused smile. He returned the smile sheepishly and the girl joined in on the expression game with a very mean one directed at Tess and a flirty grin at Carl. Idiots. Both of them. She looked at Jason who was looking out the window again. As if he could feel her stare, his eyes caught hers.
"Hey," he said smiling. She smiled back.
"Hi." There was a pause. "What- what was your conversation about?" she stammered out. His face fell a little and his blue eyes clouded over, his face pulled into a pained expression, much like the face he made at Ana.
"I'm sorry, I can't tell you." He didn't look at her. Tess slid down her chair until she was perched on the edge, the paper and pen in her lap, Vee safely in her fisted hand, and her elbows on her knees, her head rested gently on her hands. She stared at him.
"Who's Ana?" He grimaced.
"I can't tell you."
"Why?" Tess leaned forward. He turned his head in the direction of the window, avoiding her question. She sighed.
"Look, I don't want to pry, but if we are friends, I mean, you saved my life so... If we are friends, I just think if you need help with anything, I should be able to help." Jason turned back quickly and she flinched at the sudden movement and braced herself for the "friends!? Who ever said we were friends?!" that she expected him to throw at her. With her eyes squeezed shut, she didn't see his face soften. But she did when she opened her eyes.
"We are friends, Tess. After all, you," he emphasized the word while a smile tugged at his lips, "were the one that saved my life." He full out smiled. "But I don't need help," he finished, his face turning into a stony mask. Tess didn't like seeing him like that. She fixed her position by leaning back into the chair, her hands back near her sides, her fingers again twiddling with Sam's ring. She felt his eyes on the ring.
"What's that?" Jason asked. She covered the ring and looked up at him.
"What's what?"
"Your ring. You were playing with it. I was just wondering why." His piercing blue eyes were on her. She couldn't help but tell him. It was they eyes. It had to be.
"My boyfriend. Sam," she choked out, looking away. "He gave it to me. The day before he..." Tess couldn't finish. She didn't want to say it out loud. She forced her head so far away from him, so he couldn't see the fat tears rolling down her cheeks, leaving streaks of wetness, that marked their presence, even if she disapproved of them. Tess hastily wiped them away but it was too late. He had already seen. And now he was kneeling in front of her chair- how had he gotten there so fast? -and he had her hands clasped in his. His warmth travelled through her body and the buzz of his skin followed leaving her with shivers. Here she was mourning Sam, but letting another guy inside. And since the one she had loved before Sam was the killer, it made the situation all the worse. What type of girlfriend was she? Guilt caused the tears to cascade like a waterfall. Jason took one of his hands, the other one still holding hers, and wiped away the growing wetness. She was vaguely aware of people looking at them, but a side glance in Carl's direction told her that he hadn't started up again. He was flirting with Miss Red Silk Scarf happily. Tess was grateful; she didn't want to miss any of the meeting. Tess turned her head away from Jason's touch and tugged her hands out of his warm, welcoming ones. His face reflected the hurt that he was feeling.
"What is it?" he asked worriedly.
"I'm supposed to be mourning," she said quietly.
"Because he broke up with you?" Jason was confused. Tess's expression wobbled.
"Because he's dead," she managed to say. His eyes widened and his mouth formed an 'o'.
"How?" It was a whisper.
"Who?" Another whisper. Only loud enough for her ears.
"Trey. My ex boyfriend," she paused, stopping only to look into his eyes. "He got everyone in my family. My mother. My father. My sister. My brother. And Sam." She looked away again. "All my fault," she added quietly.
And suddenly Trey was in her mind, she was in her memory. It was the last contact she'd had with him. And it had been the last contact she had ever wanted. But Trey had other ideas. It was over a phone call.

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