Connections #3

She peeked inside the Anna Miller. She held the phone in her hand as she kept looking. She spotted Omi and Phoenix talking and eating at the bar. This was the right spot. But could she go in? Would they even believe her?

Inside, Omi paused and looked up.

“Something wrong, Omi?” Phoenix asked. The boy didn’t answer. He only pointed out the window. The girl looked up and saw her. The outsider noticed them watching her and she ran. Omi and Phoenix leapt up from their seats and ran after her.

They chased her down the street.

“Wait!” Omi cried. “We just want to talk!” The outsider didn’t listen. She ran even further.

“Halt!” Phoenix shouted. The other girl froze up in her tracks. Omi and Phoenix looked surprised at the power of voice command. The outsider slowly turned around. She looked like a little Japanese baby doll. Her long black hair was in two messy pigtails. Her school uniform looked Phoenix’s. Phoenix herself blinked.

“You’re from my school?” she asked. The other girl blinked.

“Yes,” she said. “I’m a grade above.” Omi stepped forward.

“Don’t worry,” he said. “We won’t hurt you. We just want to ask a couple of questions.” The girl didn’t move.

“Okay…” she mumbled.

“I’m Tsukiyono Omi and this is Phoenix Finch,” Omi said after a close minute. The girl looked at her feet.

“Ozawa Ayame,” she mumbled. Phoenix looked at her in surprise.

“I know you,” she said. “You live with that guy who runs that pawn shop.” Ayame lowered her head in shame.

“Yes…” she mumbled.

“Ah,” Phoenix said. “I pass that place every day on my way to school.”

“Yeah…” the other girl mumbled.

“Tell me,” Omi cut in. “What number do you have?” Ayame paused and looked up.

“What do you mean?” she asked. Omi stepped forward, but the girl stepped back.

“I don’t want any trouble,” she said.

“We won’t hurt you,” Phoenix insisted. “Just show us your number.” Ayame quickly shook her head.

“No,” she almost screamed. The other two turned to each other. A small problem fell into their hands.

“What now?” Omi asked.

“Don’t know,” Phoenix whispered. Ayame looked at them.

“What are your numbers?” she asked. Omi and Phoenix looked up at her quickly.

“Sorry?” Phoenix asked. Ayame walked over to them.

“Show me yours first,” she said, calmly. “I have to know if I can trust you.” The other two went silent. That statement was their very same thought. The trio all dared each move with their eyes. Phoenix pressed her lips together firmly. She turned her back to the girl and lowered her blouse. Ayame all but gasped at the number twenty-two burned into her shoulder. Omi swallowed a bit and turned his back to Ayame. He lowered his sweater. The girls stared in shock at his number twenty-one. Two down, now for Ayame to do the same. Omi and Phoenix turned to her, waiting. Ayame looked around nervously at first as she swallowed.

“Okay then…” she said in a tiny voice. The girl turned her back and lowered her blouse. The other two stared on with silent stun. Upon Ayame’s right shoulder was the number seven burned into the skin.

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