Chapter 8: We're Jumping Off The Roof
"Right you three" David said, taking his precious time to walk over to Brody, Kendall and I. We're back at Eastwood today, the school empty since it's six-thirty but the teachers are here and have been watching for the past hour or so. Kendall and Brody are already dressed and ready to go, Kendall's hair in a ponytail and Brody's all scruffy-my hair in the middle of being scruffed up. We're in all black again even though the last scene we did we had to change into white but because we don't shoot the scenes in order, we're shooting the second scene that will appear in the movie.
"Today, we're jumping off the roof" David continued, his tone implying that everything will be fine with jumping off a four story building. I nearly spat out the water in my mouth making Jen tut at me and continue with the fake blood that should be going from my left eyebrow down to the cut of the tee shirt by my shoulder blade. Kendall went wide eyed and Brody's mouth fell into an 'o' shape.
"Jumping?" Kendall asked.
"Off of the roof?" Brody asked too.
And for the heck of it I spoke up too. "The one we're standing on?"
"Yes, yes and yes. Don't worry there are mats at the bottom of the building to protect you, Harvey is here to help you and we will do a couple practice shots before we start. I need to go down with the camera crew but I can monitor you like usual. At the end of the practice Harvey will give you small call chips for you to put in your ear. The cameras won't pick them up in the movie but I'll be speaking to you three through them when the scene starts." David explained as the makeup artists and everyone else started leaving. I could see some kids that go to Eastwood start coming in, they already know we're shooting some scenes today and have actually been given a day off but Lilly and Jack texted Kendall and I telling us that most of our year are coming to watch us anyway.
"Got it?" David asked this time. I nodded with the others and he happily skipped away, Harvey coming up two minutes later and we set to work. We had to walk to the edge where we could see just how high the place is and everyone on the ground. You could barely see their basic features but all of their movements are see able-four men rolled out a big blue plastic thing that got plugged in and then plugged in. It started inflating and I realized that's the big air mattress that inflates to about five feet which we need to land on.
"Right kids, what needs to happen is your supposed to just jump. You'll start on the other side of the roof where you'll start running. You'll skid to a stop here where a couple pebbles will fall down before you start your monologue and then Brody will jump first. Zack, you and Kendall will converse a bit before you grab her hand and you both jump. Understand all of you?" He said although he did look pretty freaked out himself at the thought.
"Yeah." Brody nodded wearily.
"Run, skid, talk, Brody jumps, talk more and then Zack and I jump." Kendall replied as I continued to scan the inflatable mat that we have to land on. There's no way we'll miss it, if we do we've jumped diagonally and we could be in hospital for weeks but if we jump right then we'll be fine. Maybe a little shook up but David told us that we'll be able to do the bigger stunts if we can do this, this? This is merely a precaution and a test, which I'm willing to take if it means doing the bigger stunts and making this movie 'epic' as Jackson calls it. Katy and Jackson are sat with David, watching with headsets on so they can speak to us too. They've already done their stunts, meaning they can move on to the next stage but only if the three of us can do this.
"Let's start with the skid."
"You ready kids?" David asked, the chip in my hair letting me hear him. I looked around for the camera that's with us on the roof and held my thumbs up along with the other two. "Let's do this then."
"Hey Zack..." Katy's voice drifted through my chip but Kendall and Brody don't seem to have heard it.
"Yeah Katy?" I asked walking away from the other two a bit but the camera following me so Katy can hear.
"Please be careful, especially with Kendall." She said.
"Yeah, when you start the scene she'll act scared but she won't be acting." Jackson added. "She looks pretty freaked out at the moment."
"Guys." I replied. "I wouldn't dream of hurting her."
"Alright, good luck." They both said before I turned back and jogged to the other two.
"AND ACTION!" David shouted through his megaphone, making it extremely loud in our ears.
"Go, go go!" Marc (Brody) shouted as we stumbled over the roof top. I was in the lead by a couple steps but flung my arms out and skidded to a stop at the edge, blocking Marc and Alex's way. They skidded too, Alex gripping onto my arm for support and my arm was automatically around her waist to steady her. A couple pebbles had fallen as we quickly judged the distance.
"We can't." Marc shook his head and my own head whipped round. When we shoot this in Barbados again (just the running part) some men in full body armor will be chasing us with tazer guns at the ready.
"We have to." I sighed turning back and craning my neck to see the four stories under neath us that seem to be growing. "That's the only way we'll lose them."
"It's too high." Marc argued.
I turned to him and gave him a glare, my arm still wrapped tightly around Alexis. "We either jump or we die and I for one don't want to die. We can't die, we won't die not this young."
"Ry, Marc's right. We have a higher chance dying jumping off this thing than being caught." Alexis shook her head making me sigh and tug at my hair.
"Ryan." Alexis said again making me look down at her, she looks so vulnerable and you can see the scared look in her eyes. "Face it, we're done for."
I nodded, knowing she was right and quickly looked away. I shook my head though afterwards, not entirely believing her. "We just... we can't die now."
A light bulb went off and I grinned. "What?" Marc asked questioningly.
"Distractions. Distract them long enough for at least one of us to jump. By that time they might have gained on us but they'll be in too much shock to do anything for the other two." I said quickly. "It's worth a shot and then one of us will be safe which is what matters."
"I don't know" Alexis muttered.
"Come on!" I nearly shouted. "The office doesn't even think that we would get this far and now they've ditched us. Henry's the only one that needs us to come home, if we don't do it for the mission for the office we need to do it for Henry. The one that took us in, fed us and made us both feel like family because the both of us could have been left for the dead those nights, we owe our life's to him and if I die it's gonna be because I tried for Henry. For our dad."
She looked at me sadly before sniffing and nodding. "The air tanks. They're old and if we kick them they'll let off so much steam it will create a cloud plus a huge bang. Marc can jump while we do the last couple before jumping too."
She quickly ducked from my grip and her and Marc got to work. I was frozen, she was risking her life when I was implying she jumps first. I quickly rushed over to her and spun her round by her arm.
"Are you crazy?!" I shouted. "I meant for YOU to jump. If any of us live it has to be you because you know what to do you're the most skilled!"
"Dude, come on I'm right here!" Marc replied sassily, getting back to kicking the boxes after I glared at him.
"MARC NOW!" Alexis shouted. Marc seemed skeptical as I silently pleaded with him but with the look Alexis gave him he was running and then disappeared from the roof completely. I spun round and tried to keep a grip on Alexis but she was kicking the air tanks like her life depended on it, which it kinda does.
"ALEX!" I shouted grabbing her attention, I saw tears on her cheeks making mine fall too. We both know that we're done for. "I don't want you to die. You should have jumped first."
"I didn't jump, because I knew that if I did you and Marc would have died. I wouldn't be able to live with myself knowing that you died." She whispered. I pulled her into a hug, resting my chin on her head and letting my tears flow.
"I'm sorry Ryan." She half whispered half choked. "But-"
"If I die you die with me." I finished. "I know, but we... we just.. can't."
"But we will."
"It's pathetic." I whispered. "To think after years of doing this, constantly running and hiding. Trying to protect other people we didn't even think that a four story building would have killed us because we protected Marc. After all the bullets inside us, cuts, blood and buildings that have collapsed on us.... we're too scared to jump."
Alexis remained silent and I know that we're both saying goodbye to everybody in the office. To Henry, Jackie, Marc and Troye, Ash and everyone else. We remained there for a couple more seconds, with Alexis hugging my waist and me hugging her shoulders until she stopped crying and pulled away.
"This isn't the end." She shook her head and ran to the last box. She looked over to the other side of the roof, waving and grinning before kicking the box and letting the steam fly up. I scanned the area and kicked the last two so hard they ended up splitting in half steam going everywhere.
Alexis and I both stood on different ends of the roof as we looked at each. "Ready?" I mouthed. She nodded and we both split into a diagonal run. Halfway towards the roof we were next to each other and running straight. My hand slipped into hers just before we both jumped off the roof.
"CUT!" David shouted as Kendall and I crashed onto our backs, the mat bouncing us a little before resting and leaving us lying breathing heavily. Kendall sat up and I got up after her, both of us quickly pulling each other into a hug. The mat dipped as the other three joined us, eventually most of the team we spend most of our time with joining in. I could barely hear the kids in our year cheering and screaming because of the buzz that was our group hug.
"So you three" David said, leaning against the mat once we had all pulled away. Brody, Kendall and I looked at him with grins on our faces before they quickly vanished after his next sentence. "We forgot to press record."
"Please tell me you pressed record this time!" Kendall gasped when David yelled cut. The camera men next to us burst out laughing along with anyone in ear shot which is pretty much every single one of us on campus.
I sat up as David walked over grinning like the Cheshire cat from Alice In Wonderland.
"Oh we pressed record the first time, that was just a test to see if you could handle the much much bigger stunts." He smiled as I stared at him in shock. "It was also payback for pranking me last week."
"Well played." I said slowly, stretching my hand out which he shook and then pulled me off from the mat. I helped Kendall off before she was suddenly on the floor with Lilly and Ella on top of her.
I soon joined them because Ella tugged at my leg. I heard Jack, Danny and Josh start laughing as I groaned, rubbing the back of my head with my hand and trying to escape the girls grip.
"Having fun mate?" Josh asked, leaning over me as I smiled up at him. The girls stood up and Danny held out his hand for me. I took a hold of it and pulled myself up before the boys and I did that bro hug thing that we do.
"OI ZACK!" Jackson shouted making us all look over.
"Back in a second." I said and jogged over to Jackson and Katy who were looking over at the school gates. "Yeah?"
"Who's that? He's been watching you and Kendall the whole time." Katy asked pointing over to the gates. I looked over and the blood in my body stopped pumping. My mind blanked out and my protective instincts suddenly came out.
"Zack?" Jackson said waving a hand in my face. "Who is it?"
I didn't answer for a while but eventually I managed to snap out of my daze and answer. "That's Romeo Beckham."