While they waited for the others to show, Nathan pulled out his laptop and started playing a video he’d found. A comedic one which soon got the both of them laughing.
Eventually, Alex heard wheels pulling up in the driveway, as well as the familiar sound of a truck engine. Entering the front hall just as the doorbell rang, he answered it to find Marcus and Catherine at the door.
“Had to get some gas on the way.” Catherine said as they came inside.
“No worries. Grab a seat. I’ll get you guys some water.” With all of his friends in the house, and his parents gone, Alex’s palms became sweaty. This was it. No turning back, or chickening out. A delay to calm his nerves however… “You guys want some food, or did you eat already?”
“I’m actually kind of hungry.” Catherine said.
“Same here.” Marcus said. Nathan chimed in with a similar answer.
While Alex set up the order with a local pizza place, his eyes glanced over to his friends. They seemed to be engaging in small talk but some part of him was weary about that. Especially since Nathan seemed to be dominating the conversation.
“They said less than twenty minutes.” Alex pocketed his phone and returned to the kitchen, taking a seat on the last open chair. Breathing an unintentional sigh, he braced himself for what was coming, his heart beating faster already.
“So, what did you want us all here to listen to?” Marcus asked.
Alex stalled for a second. “It’s about something that happened to me a while back.”
“That wolf that came after you?” Catherine asked.
“Sort of.” Alex said. His words were starting to come easier but he had to hold back on dropping the whole truth in one shot.
“That was the night before we went to First Colony, right?”
Alex nodded at that. “I should have said something then, but I didn’t want to freak you guys out.”
“With a little gore?” Marcus said with a jestful scoff.
“No. Not that.” Alex stalled again. “I wasn’t telling you the whole truth that night you guys came over.” Marcus looked confused at that statement; Nathan and Catherine looked at each other for a second in response. A gesture that didn’t escape Alex’s notice.
“The whole truth about?” Nathan began.
“What I saw that night, and what it did to me.”
“Why are you being so cryptic, man?” Marcus said. The question caught Alex off-guard, despite no impatience in the tone. “What did you see?”
“Something I never believed was real until it was on top of me.” The silence in the room lasted less than a half-second. “And I’m not being cryptic or trying to pull your legs here.”
“Then, just say what you need to.”