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Beautiful Dangerous
Season 2, Episode 15
JamesBD
Air date TBA March 2012
Written by Kurt's Boy 86
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Beautiful Dangerous is the fifteen episode of season 2 and thirty-seventh episode overall of Glee: The Next Generation.

When James's involvement with Aldy and friends takes a dangerous turn, it could have tragic results. Meanwhile, Hallie must face her past when she learns her rapist and the father of her twins isn't dead. Meanwhile an altercation resulting from James' involvement with Aldy and friends will send someone to the hospital and cause one character to unexpectedly leave.

Information

Songs:

Glee: The Next Generation Season 2, Episode #15: Beautiful Dangerous

So here’s what you missed on Glee: The Next Generation:

James told Jaxon he’d ditch his bad boy friends in a heartbeat for Jaxon so Jaxon took James back. Hallie was raped at a party she snuck into three years ago and some guy named Chris took advantage of her and now she had twin two year old children. Hallie’s struggled with this ever since it happened mainly because Chris died in a drag racing accident and she never got closure. Honey and Declan are planning something big, but before they told her dads, she ran it past her birth mom, Shelby Cocoran. Chuck knocked up Chastity Vega, the evil bitch that tormented Hallie when she was pregnant. Aldy and Taylor are just FWBs, but Taylor thinks they’re something more. She’s even way clingy.

And that’s what you missed on Glee!

____________________________________________________________

James walked to Jaxon’s locker and stopped. He leaned against the locker next to Jaxon and smiled.

“Morning, Sunshine,” James said.

Jaxon smiled. “You’re in great spirits today.”

James nodded. “Notice anything different?”

Jaxon turned to look at James, scanning him from head to toe.

“Yeah,” Jaxon said with a smile. “You look like the old you. Have you told Aldy that you wouldn’t be hanging out with him anymore?”

“Not yet,” James said. “I’m trying to figure out the best way to go about that.”

“I can come with you,” Jaxon said. “That way you don’t have to do it alone.”

James smiled. “Really? Thanks, Jaxon.”

James wrapped his arms around Jaxon and hugged him tightly. Jaxon patted James’s back gently.

“I’m really proud of you, James. I’ll be with you every step of the way. I promise.”

“I know, Jaxon. You always keep your promises.”

____________________________________________________________

At lunchtime, Jaxon and James were finally sitting together and the overall mood had seemed to change. There wasn’t as much animosity or drama in the air.

Taylor and Aldy walked over to the table to join the rest of their friends, hand-in-hand.

“Okay,” Lana said. “What’s going on? I thought you made it very clear you weren’t dating.”

Aldy shrugged. “It just kinda happened pretty much overnight. I can’t really explain it. It still kind of confuses me.”

“Aldy just finally realized his feelings for me run deeper than being friends with benefits. He’s pretty much been a new person since his best friend Chris sent him an email saying he was returning to Lima.”

“Well, I guess I’m happy for you,” James said. “Everyone deserves love.”

“You know,” Rose said. “You would think that fresh off our victory at Regionals, we’d be more like rock stars by now. Why are we still having to sit at our own table?”

“Does it matter?” Nicole said. “At least we’re together and happy over here. I learned firsthand that popularity is overrated.”

“Guess you’re right,” Rose said.

____________________________________________________________

Aldy waited outside McKinley, smoking a cigarette which he nonchalantly flicked aside. He looked up, a smile crossing his face when he saw who was walking his way.

“Chris Winters, you old dog!” Aldy said.

Chris smiled. “Aldy Williams, my main man! How are you doing?”

“I’m doing pretty good I guess. How are things your way?”

“Well I had to disappear for a while because some stuff went down with some girl at a party. No big deal, man. You know how girls are. But now I’m back in Lima for good.”

“I can’t tell you how good it is to have you back with us. Things are getting crazy over in Lima Heights Adjacent. This gang named the Orange Dragons have taken over since you left. We’d had a few altercation with them.”

“They better know that they are in drag racer territory. I’ll send them a little message that they won’t soon forget,” Chris said.

“For real, dude,” Aldy said. “It’s great to have you back. Can you believe it? The boys are back together. Nothing can stop us now, man.”

“I’m glad to back,” Chris said.

“Guess who just got back today?” Aldy sang. “Those wild-eyed boys that had been away. Haven't changed, haven't much to say, but man, I still think those cats are great. They were asking if you were around. How you was, where you could be found. I told them you were living downtown, driving all the old men crazy. The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town. I said the boys are back in to-o-o-own. The boys are back in town. The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town. Boys are back in town, boys are back in town.”

Chris gave Aldy a high five. “That’s what’s up, bro.”

“You know the chick that used to dance a lot? Every night she'd be on the floor shaking what she'd got. Man when I tell you she was cool, she was red hot. I mean she was steaming. That night over at Johnny's place, well this chick got up and she slapped Johnny's face. Man we just fell about the place. If that chick don't want to know, forget her. The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town. I said the boys are back in to-o-o-own. The boys are back in town. The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town. Boys are back in town, boys are back in town.”

Hallie stood on the front steps of McKinley, watching Aldy and Chris, a horrified look on her face like she has just seen a ghost.

“Friday night they'll be dressed to kill down at Dino's bar and grill. The drink will flow and blood will spill. If the boys want to fight, you'd better let them. That jukebox in the corner blasting out my favorite song. The nights are getting warmer, it won't be long. It won't be long till summer comes now that the boys are here again. The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town. I said the boys are back in to-o-o-own. The boys are back in town. The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town. Boys are back in town, boys are back in town. The boys are back in town, the boys are back in town. The boys are back. The boys are back in town again and hanging out at Dino’s. The boys are back in town again.”

Aldy and Chris bumped knuckled before walking off down the road. Hallie stood there, motionless.

“Hallie?” Lana said, appearing behind Hallie. “Are you okay?”

“He’s back,” Hallie said, turning to face Lana. “He was dead, that was what she told me. But he’s not. He’s here, Lana.”

“Who?” Lana asked.

“Chris, Eva and Ethan’s father.”

Lana stared blankly into space, not able to say a word due to the growing lump in her throat.

____________________________________________________________

Hallie walked into the choir room the next day to a stunned silence. When the silence was finally broken, it was by whispers over her new look. Hallie ran a ran through her raven black hair as she took her seat beside Lana.

“What have you done?” Lana asked. “Where is your beautiful blonde hair.”

“I’m not going back to that,” Hallie said. “It’s over and it’s done. Yellow is happy. Black is the color of anger and pain.”

“I thought that was red,” Kevin said. Rose glared at him.

“Hallie?” Will asked. “Why the sudden Goth look?”

“This is the new me. When someone takes advantage of you, they steal a part of you. The when you leave you pregnant and you need them, your mother tells you they died. So, you spend two years raising two kids on your own, never getting closure. And just when you think you’re past that, you find out he’s still alive and he’s back. It really messes with your head.”

Will was confused. “Chris isn’t dead?”

Aldy looked up at the mention of Chris’ name.

“No,” Lana said. “Hallie saw him yesterday.”

“Oh my gosh,” Will said. “Hallie, I’m so sorry.”

Hallie got up and walked over and grabbed a microphone. She looked at the band and mouthed something to then at which they nodded.

“His little whispers,” Hallie sang. “Love me, love me. That's all I ask for. Love me, love me.He battered his tiny fists to feel something. Wondered what it's like to touch and feel something. Monster, how should I feel? Creatures lie here, looking through the window.”

Lana looked at Jaxon, shocked by Hallie’s song choice. Jaxon shrugged his shoulders.

“That night he caged her, bruised and broke her. He struggled closer, then he stole her. Violet wrists and then her ankles, silent pain. Then he slowly saw their nightmares were his dreams. Monster, how should I feel? Creatures lie here, looking through the windows. I will hear their voices. I'm a glass child, I am Hannah's regrets. Monster, how should I feel? Turn the sheets down, murder ears with pillow lace. There's bath tubs full of glow flies. Bathe in kerosene, their words tattooed in his veins, yeah.”

Will was speechless. He looked back at the students, then at Hallie.

“Um, that was a very dark choice of song, Hallie,” Will finally managed.

“Get used to it,” Hallie said. “The Hallie you once knew, little-miss-sunshine-and-rainbows, she’s gone.”

“Perhaps you should see Mrs. Pillsbury-Schuester,” Will said.

“Why? So she can tell me lies about my rapist is dead? About how the father of my children is dead just so I can sleep at night?”

“Hallie, I think you are being very inappropriate right now,” Will said. “We’re trying to help you.”

“Well I don’t need your help! Or anyone’s help for that matter!”

Hallie stood up, grabbed her backpack, and stormed out the choir room door. Lana started after her but Will shook his head.

“Let her have her space, Lana,” he said.

____________________________________________________________

Hallie sat in the courtyard crying as James approached her. He sat down carefully beside her.

“I know how you feel, sort of. I mean, I wasn’t raped but my own father beat me. I should be able to feel safe in the presence of my own parents, but I didn’t. I keep thinking about how my dad told me he loved me and how it was all a lie.”

“Why would our parents lie to us?” Hallie asked. “How could they?”

“I don’t know,” James said. “But it’s like everything we’ve been raised to believe, the entire foundation of our lives came burning down.”

Hallie nodded. “I’m sure Lana’s looking for me.”

“Before she gets here, do you think that we have time for a song?” James asked.

Hallie nodded.

“Okay. Start us off?” James asked.

“She sits in her corner, singing herself to sleep,” Hallie sang. “Wrapped in all of the promises that no one seems to keep . She no longer cries to herself, no tears left to wash away. Just diaries of empty pages, feelings gone astray. But she will sing.”

“Till everything burns,” James and Hallie sang. “While everyone screams. Burning their lies, burning my dreams. All of this hate and all of this pain, I'll burn it all down as my anger reigns till everything burns .”

“Ooh, oh,” Hallie sang.

“Walking through life unnoticed,” James sang. “Knowing that no one cares. Too consumed in their masquerade, no one sees her there. And still she sings .”

“Till everything burns,” James and Hallie sang. “While everyone screams. Burning their lies, burning my dreams. All of this hate and all of this pain, I'll burn it all down as my anger reigns till everything burns .”

“Everything burns, everything burns,” Hallie sang.

“Watching it all fade away,” James sang.

“Everyone screams, everyone screams,” Hallie sang.

“Watching it all fade away,” James sang.

“Ooh, ooh,” Hallie sang.

“While everyone screams,” James and Hallie sang. “Burning down lies.”

“Burning my dreams,” James sang.

“All of this hate,” Hallie sang.

“And all of this pain,” James sang.

“I'll burn it all down,” James and Hallie sang. “As my anger reigns till everything burns.”

“Watching it all fade away,” James sang.

“Ooh, ooh,” Hallie sang. “Everything burns.”

“Watching it all fade away,” James sang.

As the song came to an end, they smiled at each other. Hallie pulled James in for a hug.

“Thank you,” she said.

“There you are,” Lana said, running down the steps, Jaxon close behind. “I’ve been looking all over for you. Coach Sylvester said you missed Cheerios practice.”

“I quit,” Hallie said.

“What?” Lana asked. “You love Cheerios.”

“I need something to be cheery about in order to be a cheerleader,” Hallie replied.

“How about us?” Lana said.

“You know what I mean,” Hallie said.

“No, I don’t,” Lana said. “Please fill me in.”

“It doesn’t matter anymore, Lana. People change. I changed. Just except that an move on.”

Lana grabbed Hallie’s hand and held it tightly. “I’m not letting go, Hallie. Ever. I will walk beside no matter what hell you wade through.”

“You wanna help me?” Hallie asked. “You wanna make things better? Make Chris disappear again. “

Hallie pulled her hand loose from Lana’s and started home. Lana started after here.

“Hallie! Please, stop,” Lana said, catching up with her.

“Lana, I have to go talk to my mom. It’s kinda personal and will only makes things worse if you’re there. I’ll talk to you later.”

Lana stopped walking, knowing it was best to let Hallie go. He walked back over to Jaxon, who grabbed her and hugged her.

“Believe me, I know how you feel,” Jaxon said.

____________________________________________________________

Lana didn’t look too happy as found herself in Lima Heights adjacent. She looked behind her at Jaxon and James for support. Jaxon nodded at her as he gently squeezed her shoulder.

“Remember, Lana,” Jaxon said. “We’re just here to talk.”

Lana nodded. “I know. Thanks for coming, guys.”

“We have some business to take care of ourselves,” James said.

Lana walked down the alley toward the group of people wearing racing jackets. Aldy was near the front, so she knew it was the right people.

“Yo!” Aldy said, spotting James. “What’s with the company?”

“We have to talk, Aldy,” James said.

“About?” Aldy asked, pulling away from the wall and tossing his cigarette aside.

Lana coughed from the smoke.

“I’m not going to be hanging with you guys anymore,” James said.

“You took a vow,” Taylor said.

“Let me handle this,” Aldy said at Taylor, causing her to fall back. “You gonna turn your back on us, Holland?”

“He doesn’t want to be a part of this anymore,” Jaxon said. “If that’s turning his back, then yeah, we guess so.”

“Let your boy talk,” Aldy said.

“You heard him,” James said. “And you heard me. It’s over for me.”

“We’re in this for life,” Aldy said

“Then I’m starting a new life,” James said. “I just can’t do this anymore.”

“It’s your call, Holland,” Aldy said “I’ll miss you.”

James nodded at Aldy. Aldy held his hand out and James took it, shaking it firmly.

“We’re cool?” Aldy asked.

“We’re cool,” James replied.

“Which one of you is Chris?” Lana asked.

A boy, about nineteen stepped forward. “I am.”

“I have a message for you, Winters,” Lana said, fuming. “Stay away from Hallie. Actually, it’s best if you leave again. Don’t come back. You’re not wanted here.”

“We want him here,” Taylor said.

“We don’t,” Lana said. “My girlfriend is a hopeless wreck right now because that rapist showed his face.”

“Rapist?” Chris said. “Hardly. I had no idea there was a roofie in her drink that night. Someone else was slipping it into a lot of girls’ drinks. And I certainly had no idea she was fourteen. You know what she told all us that night? That she was sixteen. Someone needs to teach your girlfriend if she’s gonna lie to play with the big dogs, don’t bitch about it when the big dogs bite.”

“Oh, that’s it!” Lana said.

Lana started toward Chris. Sensing what Lana was about to do, Jaxon tried to grab her arm and stop her, but Lana ripped it away. She walked straight up to Chris and punched him across the face. The sound of her fist hitting his face resounded in the alleyway. Taylor stepped toward Lana, who whipped around to face her.

“You want a piece of this, Princess?” Lana asked, clutching her fist so hard her knuckles turned white.

Taylor stepped behind Aldy.

“That’s what I thought,” Lana said. “Just so you all know, your boy is a rapist and a statutory rapist. And if he doesn’t leave town again, I’ll make his life a living hell. And that goes for anybody who gets in my way. Got it?”

Jaxon grabbed Lana. “Come on, you’ve done enough.”

____________________________________________________________

Hallie threw open her front door and marched into the kitchen where her mother was cooking.

“You lied to me!” Hallie yelled.

“Shh!” Miranda said. “You’ll wake the kids. I just put them down for a nap.”

“How could you, Mom? How could you lie to me?”

“What? Hallie, what are you talking about?” Miranda asked, surprised.

“You know what I’m talking about! Chris isn’t dead! You told me he died in a car accident while he was drag racing!”

“Okay, I lied to you, Hallie. But I had a good reason to.”

“How can you have a good reason to tell me such a big lie, Mother? Huh? You know how much damage has been done to me thinking that that the father of my kids was dead. All this time, he could have been in their life!”

“That’s where you’re wrong, Hallie. You think he wants anything to do with you or two those beautiful children? No, he doesn’t. He made that very clear after you had them. He told me he wanted nothing to do with them or you. I was going to take him to court and before your father passed away, he asked me not to. He said you were young and fragile and it would be best not to put you through that.”

“So you made up the lie about Chris being dead?”

“You needed closure and when Chris left out of fear of prosecution, it seemed like a good thing to say. I had no idea he’d eventually come back. Your father and I thought he’d be gone for a long time out of fear.”

“All you had to do was tell me the truth,” Hallie said. “You owe me that much. You’re my mom.”

Miranda wiped a tear from her cheek. “Hallie, I am sorry. Is this why you’ve been acting like you have been here lately? Why you’re dressing in all black and dyed your hair?”

Hallie nodded. “Yeah. I feel safe hiding behind the black Is that so wrong?”

“You are a beautiful girl, Hallie. This look it doesn’t suit you. It isn’t flattering for your beauty.”

Hallie was distracted by crying from upstairs. She sighed as she started toward the stairs.

“See? You woke the babies,” Miranda called after her.

Hallie was surprised to see Reece standing in the twins’ room, rocking Ethan.

“I was helping your mom babysit,” Reece said. “You guys woke up Ethan, so I’m trying to get him to go back to sleep.”

“I feel so depressed,” Hallie said.

“Because of this Chris guy?” Reece asked.

Hallie nodded. “Yes. And my mother lied to me.”

“She meant well. All the hassle that going to court would entail for a fourteen year-old you endured what you had to…it would be daunting.”

“I guess,” Hallie said.

“You have to stop living in the past, Hallie, or you can never enjoy the present and you’ll never appreciate the future.”

Hallie smiled. “I guess you are right. Look, Ethan’s already asleep.”

Reece looked down and smiled. “Yeah, he is. Look at that.”

____________________________________________________________

Jaxon and Lana walked James to his door. Jaxon gave James a quick kiss before he and Lana started to walk down the street.

“Sometimes I wonder how you and I ended up with two beautiful people who happen to have one foot in such trouble,” Jaxon said.

“Beautiful and dangerous,” Lana joked.

“Oh my god that reminds me of a song,” Jaxon said. “Let’s sing it.”

Lana laughed. “Alright. I’ve been dying for a chance to duet with you.”

Jaxon took his phone out of his pocket and launched the music player. He pressed play and the music began to play.

“I don't know who you are now,” Jaxon sang. “Mystery drenches my brain. I wanna jump deep into your cloud ‘cause something tells me it's gonna rain.”

“I hear the thunder thumping and my heart starts jumping and that's when I spin on the pole,” Lana sang, grabbing a tree and spinning around.

“Now my head's exploding and your gun is loaded so I'm guessing I'm on a roll,” Jaxon sang.

“Well it's a fine time looking for a wine time, man and you said, baby, you ready to play?” Lana sang.

“Well, come ride on this roller coaster ‘cause it ain't over, it ain't over,” Jaxon sang.

“Rebel of this party, I'm in love with all your danger, danger,” Jaxon and Lana sang. “We can live forever, I can be your naked angel, angel. Beautiful dangerous.”

“You like it smooth like brandy,” Lana sang. “Savor the flavor with delight. You can be Sid, I'll be Nancy ‘cause sometimes it's more fun to fight.”

“I hear the thunder thumping and my heart starts jumping and that's when I spin on the pole,” Lana sang.

“Now my head's exploding and your gun is loaded so I'm guessing I'm on a roll,” Jaxon sang.

“Well it's a fine time looking for a wine time, man and you said, baby, you ready to play?” Lana sang.

“Well, come ride on this roller coaster ‘cause it ain't over, it ain't over,” Jaxon sang.

“Rebel of this party, I'm in love with all your danger, danger,” Jaxon and Lana sang. “We can live forever, I can be your naked angel, angel. Beautiful dangerous. Rebel of this party, I'm in love with all your danger, danger. We can live forever, I can be your naked angel, angel. Beautiful dangerous.”

Lana and Jaxon began to laugh as the music came to an end.

“That was straight up awesome,” Lana said. “Anyway, I’m going to stop by Hallie’s and see if she’s alright. She tells me not to, but I can’t help it. I have to know. I know Hallie and she says she’s okay even when she’s not.”

“See you later,” Jaxon said, hugging Lana.

____________________________________________________________

Lana stood on Hallie’s front porch, waiting for someone to answer. Finally, the door opened and Reece appeared.

“Lana? Come in, it’s about to rain,” Reece said.

Reece held the door open for Lana as she walked inside.

“Thanks,” Lana said.

“Hallie!” Reece said. “Lana’s here.”

Hallie came running downstairs, drying her hair, which was blonde again.

“Your hair,” Lana said, running her fingers through it.

“It wasn’t permanent,” Hallie said. “It washes out.”

“You look beautiful,” Lana said. “Well, you always did but now, you look even more beautiful. Like an angel.”

Hallie smiled. “You came to check on me. Even though I told you not to. Bella never did that.”

“I know you enough to know that when you say you’re okay, most of the time you’re not.”

“You are amazing, Lana.”

“I punched Chris tonight. I’m sorry.”

Hallie nodded. “No, I pretty much pushed you to. It’s my fault.”

“No, it’s not,” Lana said. “I didn’t have to do it. I was just overcome with rage. It wasn’t really me. It was like I was someone else.”

“It doesn’t matter,” Hallie said.

Miranda and Reece looked at one another and nodded.

“I think I will help Reece get the kiddos ready for bed,” Miranda said. “I will leave you two alone.”

“Thanks, Mom,” Hallie said as her mom and Reece walked upstairs.

“When I see your smile, tears roll down my face I can't replace,” Lana sang. “And now that I'm strong I have figured out how this world turns cold and it breaks through my soul. And I know I'll find deep inside me I can be the one. I will never let you fall, let you fall. I'll stand up with you forever. I'll be there for you through it all, through it all. Even if saving you sends me to heaven.”

A tear rolled down Hallie’s cheek. Lana reached up and wiped it from her face.

“It's okay. It's okay. It's okay. Seasons are changing and waves are crashing and stars are falling all for us. Days grow longer and nights grow shorter. I can show you I'll be the one. I will never let you fall, let you fall. I'll stand up with you forever. I'll be there for you through it all, through it all. Even if saving you sends me to heaven. Cuz you're my, you're my, my, my true love, my whole heart. Please don't throw that away cuz I'm here for you. Please don't walk away and please tell me you'll stay whoa, stay whoa.”

Hallie smiled warmly, wiping a tear from her cheek.

“Use me as you will, pull my strings just for a thrill. And I know I'll be okay though my skies are turning gray. I will never let you fall. I'll stand up with you forever. I'll be there for you through it all. Even if saving you sends me to heaven.”

Hallie wrapped her arms around Lana. “I love you so much.”

____________________________________________________________

As Lana walked out of Hallie’s house, she saw Chuck standing there in the rain. He was soaking wet and had a blank look on his face.

“Chuck? What are you doing here? You’re gonna catch a cold standing out here in the rain.”

“Jaxon told me where to find you. I didn’t know where else to go or who I could turn to. I don’t know how to tell the guys yet.”

“What is it, Chuck?” Lana asked.

“Get into my car? I will drive you home after we talk.” Chuck replied.

Lana nodded as she walked to Chuck’s car and they got inside.

“It’s Chastity. She left me a voicemail on my phone. She told me that the baby wasn’t mine. She was pregnant before she met me. I know I should be relieved but…I can’t help but think I might have been a good dad. Now, she’s left town with the guy who got her pregnant. Guess it means we’re over.”

“Be relieved, Chuck. You dodged a bullet there. Stuck with Chastity the rest of your life. Geez even the thought sends shivers up my spine.”

Chuck smiled. “You were the only person I felt I can come to. Seeing as I know you because of Wyatt.”

“You gonna be okay?” Lana asked.

“Yeah, I think so. It’s kind of a shock. And being dumped sucks.”

Chuck started the car up and pulled out of the driveway.

“Thanks for being there, Lana.”

“What are friends for, huh?

____________________________________________________________

When James walked into his house, Hiram, Leroy, and Honey were all waiting in the living room for him.

“Please sit down James,” Leroy said.

James looked at Honey, who looked away. He slowly took a seat on the couch beside her.

“Do you have any idea how dangerous what you’ve been doing is?” Hiram asked. “Street racing is not only dangerous, it’s illegal.”

“I’ve only done it once,” James said. “I mainly just hung out with the guys and watched.

“That still makes you guilty by association,” Leroy said. “James, you have a bad home life and we understand that. We’ve afforded everything we could to you to make you happy. James, we care about you and I know that’s hard for you to understand because of what your parents, especially your dad, put you through.”

“James, we’re thinking about adopting you,” Hiram said. “You need a happy and stable home life with real parents. You’ll never be bullied by us just because of your sexual orientation. And you’re practically already family.”

“You mean it?” Honey said?

Hiram nodded. “We just want James to work on getting his life together before we go into something so life changing.”

James stood up. “I’ve left all that behind, I swear. Jaxon and Lana have helped me get away from that whole life. It’s in the past.”

Leroy nodded as he put a hand on James’s shoulder. “I’m glad. We’re here for you if you need anything.”

“I just need to do one last thing,” James said under his breath.

____________________________________________________________

James walked steadily toward Aldy’s apartment complex, his hoodie pulled up over his head to block the rain as he walked.

“Things are getting harder and harder and harder,” James sang as he walked. “Seems like I barely get by. The days are getting shorter and shorter and shorter. I just can't find enough time. It's all around me, the fear of failing. It's all around me and I keep looking down at where I know I could be. I don't want to hit the bottom. I'm at the end of my rope, my rope. Hanging from the last little bit of hope. Feeling like I'm about to lose control. Maybe I should just let go. I'm at the end of my rope, my rope. Clinging to the only thing I know. As long as there's something left to hold, I won't let go.”

James didn’t look up as he walked, focusing intently on where he was headed.

“I can still remember, remember, remember. It was so easy to fly. I thought I'd live forever, forever, forever. Now I gotta fight to survive. It's all around me, life's changing. It's all around me but I just can't let it fall too far out of reach. I don't want to hit the bottom. . I'm at the end of my rope, my rope. Hanging from the last little bit of hope. Feeling like I'm about to lose control. Maybe I should just let go. I'm at the end of my rope, my rope. Clinging to the only thing I know. As long as there's something left to hold, I won't let go. There's still some hope at the end of my rope, at the end of my rope. Every one of us has got a story to tell. Some are still lost some have found themselves. Some are in denial with no soul to sell and I am still here at the wishing well. I'll keep trying, I'll keep fighting. . I'm at the end of my rope, my rope. Hanging from the last little bit of hope. Feeling like I'm about to lose control. Maybe I should just let go. I'm at the end of my rope, my rope. Clinging to the only thing I know. As long as there's something left to hold, I won't let go. I won't let go, I won't let go. There's still some hope at the end of my rope, at the end of my rope.”

“Well, well, well,” an Orange Dragons gang member said, stepping out of a dark alley. He was huge, his arms bulging. He had tattoos on his face and wore a bandana on his head.

James stepped back, afraid.

“What do we have here? I recognize you,” the gang member said. “You’re one of those street racers who are trying to take over our turf.”

“No, no, I’m not,” James said. “I quit. I’m just headed to a friend’s house to apologize for something that happened.”

“You quit, huh?” The gang member asked. “That doesn’t sound likely. My brothers can’t quit. We’re in this for life.”

The gang member smiled as he deployed his switchblade.

“Please, don’t do this,” James said.

“I think I need to teach your friends a little lesson about trying to take over our turf.”

Jaxon stood across the street. Somehow, he knew James would be coming back here, so he followed him from his house. And now, James was in mortal danger. He didn’t think twice before he reacted.

“Leave him alone,” Jaxon said, walking over to stand between the gang member and James.

“Jaxon, leave,” James begged.

Jaxon shook his head. “Don’t do this. Don’t hurt him.”

“Or what?” The gang member asked.

“Just leave him alone. Got it?”

“I got it,” the gang member said. “You’re fair game, then, huh?”

“Jaxon!” James shouted.

The gang member thrust the knife forward, aiming right for Jaxon’s stomach. Jaxon thought quickly, blocking it with his arm. He screamed in pain as the knife stabbed into his forearm. James looked at Jaxon, praying that he was alive.

The gang member, realizing what he did, turned around and ran off as Jaxon fell to the ground into a puddle of water.

“Someone help me! James screamed into the night. “Help me, please! Help me!”

Aldy threw his bedroom window open and looked down into the street below him. Jaxon lay there, clutching his arm as the puddle of water turned pink. Aldy shut the window and ran down stairs and out the front door.

“We gotta get pressure on that,” Aldy said. “If we don’t, he’ll bleed out.”

Aldy reached down and ripped off the bottom of his T-shirt. He wrapped it around Jaxon’s arm, tying it as tightly as he could around the stab wound. James stood there, crying.

____________________________________________________________

In the emergency room, James and Aldy sat side by side, not speaking. Finally, James broke the silence.

“This is my fault. If I hadn’t come to you to apologize for leaving so abruptly, this never would have happened,” James said.

“No. It’s my fault. This was because of a turf war that I started. All because I was so stupid and foolish.”

“Don’t blame yourself, Aldy.”

Aldy shook his head. “I’m a screw up, James. I always have been. Since my dad left me and my little brother to fend for ourselves, I’ve just messed everything up. I’m supposed to set a good example for him. But what do I do? I drink, I smoke, I race, I start turf wars, and I get my friend stabbed.”

“You had no idea it would happen,” James said. “If Jaxon hadn’t followed me--”

“It would have been you,” Aldy said. “I would still be responsible and you wouldn’t be. So, it’s my fault. But that’s okay. Starting tomorrow I am sending Jake to live with his grandparents and I’m going to go into rehab. I’m going to get my life straight.”

“You serious?” James asked.

“James, I have a problem. I need help.”

James looked to the sky. “Look, God, I know I’ve spent years doubting you. I’m truly sorry. But all I want is for Jaxon to be okay. I don’t doubt you. I know you were there tonight. You sent Jaxon to save. Please, God, don’t let him die and don’t let him end up disabled because of me.”

“Mr. Holland? Mr. Williams?” A nurse said. “Mr. Pierce is in his room and he insists on seeing you both.”

____________________________________________________________

James and Aldy walked into Jaxon’s hospital room uneasily.

“I have to stay overnight,” Jaxon said. “The stab wound severed a tendon. Which means, I’m not gonna be playing guitar for a while. If I ever want to again, it’s gonna require reconstructive surgery.”

“This is my fault,” Aldy said.

“Are you kidding?” Jaxon said. “You keep me from bleeding out. You saved me, Aldy.”

“It’s still my fault. It was my stupid damn turf war with the Orange Dragons.”

“Hey,” Jaxon said. “Stuff happens, alright?”

Aldy nodded. “I’m going into rehab, Jaxon. It’s time I get sober. I have a problem and recent events have showed me that.”

Jaxon nodded. “Do what you feel you have to do, Aldy. I wish you luck.”

“Look,” Aldy said. “I left Jake alone at the apartment. I need to make sure he’s alright. I’ll be seeing you.”

Aldy shook Jaxon’s good hand.

“Best of luck, Aldy,” Jaxon said.

Aldy smiled and he walked silently out of the room, leaving Jaxon and James alone.

“I, uh, prayed to God tonight,” James said. “I started when that thug went to stab you. I said, ‘please God, don’t let him kill Jaxon.’ When your life was on the line, I threw all my doubts out the window. I just had to put my faith in something.”

Jaxon smiled. “You prayed for me?”

James nodded. “I love you so much. If anything happened to you, I couldn’t bear it.”

Jaxon smiled as he reached up to wipe a tear from James’ cheek.

“I told you I would never let anyone hurt you and I kept that promise,” Jaxon said.

James nodded. “You did.”

“I'm so tired of being here, suppressed by all my childish fears,” Jaxon sang. “And if you have to leave, I wish that you would just leave. 'Cause your presence still lingers here and it won't leave me alone. These wounds won't seem to heal. This pain is just too real. There's just too much that time cannot erase. When you cried, I'd wipe away all of your tears. When you'd scream, I'd fight away all of your fears. And I held your hand through all of these years. But you still have all of me.”

Jaxon took James’ hand and held it tightly.

“You used to captivate me by your resonating light. Now I'm bound by the life you left behind. Your face it haunts my once pleasant dreams. Your voice it chased away all the sanity in me. These wounds won't seem to heal. This pain is just too real. There's just too much that time cannot erase. When you cried, I'd wipe away all of your tears. When you'd scream, I'd fight away all of your fears. And I held your hand through all of these years. But you still have all of me. I've tried so hard to tell myself that you're gone. But though you're still with me, I've been alone all along. These wounds won't seem to heal. This pain is just too real. There's just too much that time cannot erase. When you cried, I'd wipe away all of your tears. When you'd scream, I'd fight away all of your fears. And I held your hand through all of these years. But you still have all of me.”

James wiped a tear from his cheek as he leaned in and kissed Jaxon.

“I am so sorry for what I caused,” James said.

“Please don’t apologize, James. I love you, that’s why I did what I did. Never apologize for proving to me just how much I love you.”

“Visiting time is over,” a nurse said, standing in the doorway.

James smiled at Jaxon one last time as he pulled his hand away.

“I love you,” James said.

“I know,” Jaxon said. “And I love you.”

____________________________________________________________

James was walking through the lobby when he was met by the rest of New Directions, minus Aldy of course, and Chuck.

“Is Jaxon okay?” Lana asked, clutching Hallie’s hand. “It’s on the news he got stabbed.”

“He’s okay,” James said.

“What’s gonna happen?” Evan asked.

“He has to have reconstructive surgery to fixed a severed tendon or else he’ll never be able to play guitar. The nurse said he lost some of the function in his middle three fingers until the reconstructive surgery,” James answered.

“This is horrible,” Nicole said, laying her head on Honey’s shoulder and crying.

“I’m just glad he’s okay,” Miles said. “I was worried sick.”

“Miles cried the whole way here,” Lana said.

“I admit it,” Miles said. “You hear on the news that your best friend got stabbed, you’re gonna be pretty freaking upset.”

“Honey, can I ride home with you?” James said.

“You’re probably going to be riding home with Leroy,” Rose said. “He and Hiram are here and they’re not too happy.”

“They know where I went?” James asked.

“Aldy called them and told them what happened so they could be there for you,” Honey replied.

“James, what the hell were you thinking?” Leroy said, walking in the door. “You could have been killed! Jaxon could have been killed!”

“I’m sorry,” James said, crying.

Leroy sighed. “Come here.”

James collapsed into Leroy’s arms, crying. Honey walked around and began to pat James on the back. Hiram placed his hand on his shoulder.

“It’s okay,” Hiram said.

____________________________________________________________

Two days later, when Jaxon finally returned to school, he was greeted with applause and hugs when he walked into the choir room.

“Welcome back,” Will said.

“Thanks, guys,” Jaxon said.

“In light of recent events,” Will said. “The Glee Club has prepared a number. If you will follow us to the auditorium, we’d love to perform it for you.”

Jaxon smiled. “You guys didn’t have to do that.”

____________________________________________________________

The spotlight light was on New Directions, minus Jaxon and Aldy, as the music began. On the giant screen behind them, the rapidly changing backgrounds from All American Reject’s “Move Along” video was project. New Directions stood onstage in T-shirts that were all a different color and blue jeans. On their right arms, they all wore black arm bands in support of Jaxon.

Jaxon sat out in the audience, beside Mr. Schue, eagerly awaiting the performance.

Evan stepped forward.

“Go ahead as you waste your days with thinking,” Evan sang. “When you fall everyone stands. Another day and you've had your fill of sinking with the life held in your hands are shaking cold. These hands are meant to hold. Speak to me.”

“When all you got to keep is strong,” New Directions sang. “Move along, move along like I know you do. And even when your hope is gone, move along, move along just to make it through. Move along, move along.”

“So a day when you've lost yourself completely could be a night when your life ends,” Rose sang. “Such a heart that will lead you to deceiving. All the pain held in your hands are shaking cold. Your hands are mine to hold. Speak to me.”

“When all you got to keep is strong,” New Directions sang. “Move along, move along like I know you do. And even when your hope is gone, move along, move along just to make it through. Move along, move along.”

“Go on, go on, go on, go on,” Nicole sang.

“When everything is wrong, we move along,” New Directions sang,

“Go on, go on, go on, go on,” Nicole sang.

“When everything is wrong, we move along. Along, along, along,” New Directions sang.

“When all you got to keep is strong,” Kevin sang. “Move along, move along like I know you do. And even when your hope is gone, move along, move along just to make it through.”

“When all you got to keep is strong,” New Directions sang. “Move along, move along like I know you do. And even when your hope is gone, move along, move along just to make it through. Move along, move along. When all you got to keep is strong. Move along, move along like I know you do. And even when your hope is gone, move along, move along just to make it through. Move along.”

“Go on, go on, go on, go on,” Nicole sang.

“Right back what is wrong, we move along,” New Directions sang.

“Go on, go on, go on, go on,” Nicole sang.

“Right back what is wrong, we move along,” New Directions sang.

“Go on, go on, go on, go on,” Nicole sang.

“Right back what is wrong, we move along,” New Directions sang.

Jaxon stood up and applauded.


THE END

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