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As The Pack and I take our usual courtyard table at lunch, the warm air feels heavy with fear. The sun might be shining, but it may as well be gray and cloudy with how everyone acts. People don't chat and laugh, but instead look over their shoulders while they whisper conversations.
"This is weird," I say as I sit by Seth.
"It really is." Brady claims the seat opposite me, eyeing the crowd of students. "Have you noticed that with every day Juan's people stick around, everyone seems to sit closer and closer to us? Or is that just me?"
"Not just you, bro," Carlos says. "Pretty sure they think it'll be safer to be next to the gifted kids if a fight starts."
"Talk about tables turning." Bea slides in next to Brady, glancing at the other tables with annoyance. "Hate on us for years, label us as The Pack because our abilities are stronger, but when things go bad we're suddenly the coolest people around?"
"It's kind of suffocating," Seth admits. He's always been a loner, and even needs his space from me sometimes.
"At least my ears aren't killing me," Hector says through a mouthful of hamburger. "I might even be able to take out my plugs if people keep being so quiet."
"Well, as long as you're happy," Bea says. "So what if the town is crawling with thugs and no one knows why? Hector's ears don't hurt!"
Hector blinks a few times. "Sorry for finding a silver lining."
"That's one thin silver lining, dude," Carlos adds. "Especially when my Fiona could be in serious danger."
I groan. "If you keep talking like that I hope I do get kidnapped."
Carlos pouts. "Why are you so mean to me?"
"Because..." Seth grabs me by the waist. "She's taken."
"And it's fun," I add.
Seth laughs and kisses my cheek, to which Carlos makes a gagging sound as usual. I wish he'd stop, because I can't help being invisible. It probably wouldn't look half as weird if Seth wasn't
"kissing air." What I'd give to be visible in moments like this.