Not What He Seems

Chad takes things too far in his efforts to torment Evie, Jay, Mal, Carlos, Doug, and even Ben, and they hatch a plan to get their revenge. But when something shocking and sad about Chad is revealed, they find themselves wanting to help him instead of hurt him. What will the VKs and their friends decide to do? Contains violence, depression, and talk of suicide throughout. (Entry for the "Battle of the Fandoms" competition in the OUAT/Disney category)

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7. Plans

Doug found Chad in the library, huddled at a desk in the Fairytales section. He was clutching the story of Cinderella tightly in his hands, reading it. Doug was hesitant to approach him, seeing the red rimming his eyes and the way his shoulders were shaking, but he needed to get him back to his Dorm Room. Doug put a hand on Chad's shoulder, surprised when it didn't startle him and relieved when Chad mustered a smile.

"Hey, Doug. What're you doing here?" Chad asked, his voice cracking slightly. Okay, Chad had definitely been crying. "I've been looking for you. The others have too. You scared us when you ran off," Doug replied, biting his lip. Chad's little smile faded and he looked away, turning back to the book. Doug saw the water stains occasionally dotting the page, and his face fell. He gripped Chad's shoulder tighter.

"Chad, what-?"

"I don't want to talk about it," Chad interrupted, glaring at Doug so ferociously he almost squeaked and ran out the library. But, he wasn't going to give up! Like his father always taught him, you never give up on your friends, even when they're being jerks to you. Doug had no idea when he started to consider Chad a friend. After the whole mirror incident, it just sort of happened. Doug's expression firmed and he sat in the seat next to Chad, yanking the book out of his hands. Chad opened his mouth to protest and tried to grab the book back, but he quickly snapped his mouth shut and let his hands fall into his lap when he saw Doug's stormy look.

"Chad, tell me what happened, or I will not hesitate to shove this book so far down your throat it comes out the other end," Doug said cooly. Chad's face paled and even Doug was shocked. Where the heck had that come from? He never threatened people, ever. But, it seemed to work. Chad shifted uncomfortably in his seat, looking down at his hands. Doug to tell he was trying to figure out what to say, since his mouth was twitching so much.

"I... tried to talk to my parents," Chad finally began quietly. Doug's stomach plummeted and he almost put his hand on Chad's shoulder again, but quickly restrained himself. Chad swallowed, a lump forming in his throat. He cursed under his breath, hating that he was so emotional lately. It sucked, especially since he was a guy, and a guy that everyone thought was super tough to top it all off. Doug nodded to him encouragingly, waiting patiently for him to continue.

"It started off bad, then things started looking up. But then, my parents told me... something... and I knew it wasn't happening. They aren't going to get Derek out of Copper Cove," Chad said, his tone final. Doug stared at Chad, his mouth hanging open. Were Chad's parents insane?! Chad bit his lip and let out a soft sigh, making Doug look up at him. He looked so sad, it didn't settle well with Doug. What had his parents told him? Was that why he was crying?

"W-Well... If your parents aren't going to help Derek, then we will," Doug said slowly, as if each word took a ton of thought to say. Chad immediately perked up, his eyes wide. "S-Seriously?! Do you think we could?!" he squeaked, and Doug felt himself smile as he nodded. "I'll tell the Ben, Evie, and Mal. You take care of Jay and Carlos. We'll meet up in my dorm room in ten."

*    *    *

"Operation 'Save Derek' is about to commence!" Doug declared to the rest of the occupants of the room, standing confidently next to Chad. After Chad and Doug had explained everything, the others instantly understood the gravity of the situation. Derek's safety, and maybe even his life, were on the line. They needed to come up with some sort of rescue plan. A few ideas had been tossed around, but no one had come up with anything binding. But, they were starting to come up with a few of the basics.

"Okay, come on guys, think! Copper Cove is a school for delinquents, and has top security. We need to find a way to get in!" Ben said, standing up to join his two friends. "I can take care of that, no worries! I was born for a job like this!" Carlos said with a grin, cracking his knuckles with a tiny pop. Jay clapped him on the back, making him yelp, and the other VKs nodded in approval.

"Okay, security is somewhat out of the way. Evie, use your mirror to the plans for those. Okay... disguises are a must. All of us are fairly well known throughout all of Auradon, so they'll recognize us," Chad said, and he glanced at each of them in turn. "I think there's a some sort of spell or potion that changes what you look like. I'll take a look," Mal said, taking her spell book out of her bag and flipping through it. Chad smiled gratefully and nodded.

"We'll need a way to transport Derek when we finally get there. Philip and Aurora's kingdom is a few hours away, and that's by car. Jay, you have anything we could use for that?" Doug said, glancing at the burly member of their group. Jay hesitated slightly before nodding. "I could steal a car. Well, borrow is a better term. Chad, can you drive?" Chad nodded in response.

"I think that's everything," Doug said. "Oh really? You've forgotten something important. A distraction," someone new said, and all of the room's occupants whipped around to face the door. Jane and Audrey stood in the doorway, Jane hiding timidly behind Audrey while the latter smiled at Chad smugly. "We can do that. The guards at Copper Coves love chicks. And your plan has some holes, it's way too simple. We can help you with that too," Jane said quietly, smiling a little. Chad grinned at his girlfriend.

"I'm so happy I could kiss you right now," he chuckled, an Audrey teasingly made a face. "Ew, no. But seriously guys, we want to help," Audrey said, her expression becoming slightly more serious. Mal and Ben looked unhappy about the newest additions to their team, but the others seemed to be fine with it.

"Well, what are we waiting for? Let's get this plan into action!" Audrey cheered.

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