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Halfway There is the twenty-forth chapter of Last Dance and was published on February 18.

Synopsis

News about a spy roaming around the studio is spreading and some people are quick to accuse Richelle. Meanwhile, Ally takes her job one step too far.

Chapter

Ally stormed into the main studio of the building of which she was committed to. "Alright, I got your text Skylar. What do you need?" She asked Skylar, her bag carrying her swiftly in the sunlight while she was face to face with the dance captain.

"I need you to get incriminating evidence on Richelle and see if her ugly loner boyfriend, Ozzy or whatever his name is, is in on it too. If nothing comes up, it means we have to pin our target on someone else. We have a bunch of gadgets we would like you to use." Skylar informed Ally.

Ally looked along the table - there were gadgets; a wire and something to hook him up to. A bunch of little things to stick to give audio, and a video taping device on a hat. Everything that looked like it could have came from a spy movie, and she flashed a pathetic fake smile, looking on nervously to the stuff that she'd be forced by her contract to wear. She looked down and bit his lip, and then began to get the stuff on.

She got everything on, plugged everything in, and then turned to Skylar. "I'm ready." She said and then walked out of the somber studio, hoping to not get anything out of this, she could not stand them, and helping them win was one of the sickest feelings ever, and it made a pit on her stomach form like a tumour. It made her feel horrible. But whatever, as long as it kept The Next Step from being disqualified.

-

Rehearsal for the day had commenced, and Richelle walked into the lockers, a sigh on her face as she turned over to see Ozzy. "I can't believe what I did." Richelle said; three days after and she was beginning to grow guilty. Sad that she was now a fugitive. "I can't believe that I did that. This is so bad. I need to find a way to make things right and get my money back but then I can't go to Nationals." Richelle said. "But would that be such a bad thing?" She asked.

"It'll be okay Richelle," Ozzy said slowly, with hope that what he said with reassure Richelle, however it did quite the opposite and only made her more paranoid.

"No I won't! I extorted that cactus! I blackmailed him. Why did I have to do this? I could go to jail Ozzy, how did I not stoop things before they got too far? Ozzy, you should have been the one to tell me that what I was doing was wrong. You could have been my advisor in that moment but no, you were the instigator. You have me the anecdote." Richelle feared immensely.

"Look, I am sorry. I thought that if I did not get involved then I'd be off and would not run the risk of being charged." Ozzy said.

"Oh now you did not think that one out through now did you?" Richelle asked, stressed that the police were probably after. "I'll talk to you later." Ozzy nodded his head and then Richelle headed to studio A, because she did not want to be near anyone at the time.

Richelle turned on I Am Not A Robot by Marina & The Diamonds. She danced her hardest, wanting to let people know that she was vulnerable. Basically outing herself out, but not really caring if the police came or not. She needed to let someone know that she was crying on the inside. Her dance obsession had officially made her realize that her lengths to dance were extreme. As it proved, she'd break her own god forsaken morals, just for that rush that she got when dancing.

When the dance commenced, she smiled and headed over to the cubby and got her stuff out of her bag. Ally walked up. "Hey, can we talk? As friends?" She asked, gulping her nerves down. Using her connections as a pawn in order to get what Gemini wants was so low, but she had to. She had no choice. It was either this, or leave. She adjusted her shirt, as it looked weird now that she'd taken all the gadgets out and had her phone making an audio recording of it instead.

"I don't trust you." Richelle spat harshly. "You're a spy from Gemini. How could you? They probably have all our dances now, and it's all your fault. They've taken everything so now we won't win. And I defended you. Are you kidding me? I'm done with you. Don't talk to me ever again." Richelle spat venom and began to puff off, done with Ally's nonsense. What good came out of her mouth before? What meant that she had changed now?

Ally rushed over to Richelle again. "No, no! You don't understand. I'm doing it to protect The Next Step." Ally protested, protecting herself.

"Yeah right. This has happened before to us, I'm not stupid." Richelle yelled.

"No, I mean it. I'm only doing it so I can make sure that they get as little information as possible. They approached me because if anyone else does it, they'll probably actually be ruthless people who will give them the information. So think about it as if I am saving you. I haven't given them the tapes of the dances to them yet, and I don't plan on it." Ally said, hoping Richelle would believe the uncontrollable truth.

"Fine." Richelle said, forced into believing her. "How about we sit down then?" She asked, a tangible bitter sound coming out of her mouth.

"Yeah, sure." Ally said, and the two sat down next to each other, prepared to talk. "So how has A-Troupe. Anything new? Is there anything I can help you with? Any advice? Anything wrong?" Ally asked slowly, wanting to make sure every word was talked about perfectly.

"Actually kind of not, I extorted someone in order to go to National's, and I now feel guilty, and I don't know what to do." She admitted, panicking. "I feel so scared to go anywhere, the police could come to me." Richelle admitted.

"Wow. When was this, and was Ozzy involved?" Ally was shocked to hear that Richelle would do something, though maybe it did not seem that surpassing, given her addiction to dancing.

"Yeah, Ozzy suggested it. And I extorted his brother, who deals in illegal businesses." Richelle admitted. Richelle scanned the surface area of the ceiling, just to find out if there were any security cameras watching this, she hoped not, as she wanted to keep it a lost secret. "So, what do I do?" She asked.

Ally was stunned at the fact that Ozzy suggested it, Ozzy never seemed like the type of person to suggest such a dark and law bending idea. Could this ever be real? Was Richelle pulling her leg? She was unsure. "I have to go, but I am sure that you'll get through this." Ally said scared, and walked off. Scared about if Richelle was lying or not. Of course, this was the wholehearted truth, and the truth regardless, but she did not believe it. As Ozzy was never the kind of person to do such a thing. She thought that for sure, it had to be a joke. Meanwhile, leaving Richelle stranded made Richelle feel useless, and helpless. As if she was invalid. As if she did not matter, like no one would buy her story. This meant that she would never be able to go to the police, and authority, to out herself, which means that she'd forever be guilty.

-

Zara was struggling in studio 1, dancing her butt off to make sure that she was distracted. She needed to be distracted from all the drama, needing to be allowed to let her mind go due to all of the drama. She had heard of rumours over how Gemini could be sending a spy to test their team, turn their team into ashes of a dead relative. She just wondered who it could be; Richelle? She was super invested in dancing, willing to do anything for dancing. Although, she was unaware of how far the dancing obsession would go, she did not think that she'd be the culprit. Especially since she had been there for three years, and Gemini had only been a team for 2. She'd been on A-Troupe for 2 years, so right around when they had started.

Zara was dancing to Take It To The Top, all the words spilling over her subconscious. Zara! Go full out. What even is that? All the bickering, yelling from her due to her insecurities of someone being better then her were pursuing her dark thoughts. She sighed, and looked down when the song ended. She frowned, and Richelle walked in. Zara backed away defensively. Not wanting this, what appeared to her as a, traitor, to be near her. "Get away from me." She pranced.

"I'm normal, I'm not crazy like that Jacquie girl." Richelle smiled.

"No, you're the Gemini who has been leaking information, aren't you?" Zara yelled, wanting to not talk to the snake who she thought wanted her team to their knees.

"No, I know who they are though, and they're actually not on the team. And relax, they're only doing it to help us." Richelle defended Ally. "If the so-called 'traitor', did not do anything, did not do this, then whoever it would be after her would be actually ruthless and give information. She's only doing it to make sure not much information leaks to them, she's being a dam." Richelle continued to defend her.

"Oh..." Zara got out of her corner, and smiled. "Well whoever it is, they're a hero. Do you know their name?" Zara asked with curiosity coursing through her viens like poison.

"Yeah, but I think for which they'd rather remain anonymous." Richelle said before walking out, her confiance glowing, but under all of that, remained her shell, her vulnerability. Allowing an attack to be made to her at any split second. Her life was walking on eggshells, thin ice. Her life was a minefield and all she needed was one misstep and she was a goner, she did not want to live this horrific life anymore, and so she had made an idea, one which no one would love her back for. One that seemed so overly ridiculous. One which seemed almost scary to all parties. One which although meant life or death to her, she was willing to risk the time and effort it would take into making it happen. She had to do this, for her own sanity. She could no longer live her life out as Richelle. But, she did not want to die, and thus, only one solution could be made for her, one which allowed her to live, feel shame and regret, and learn. She knew what she needed to do, but would never dare say it aloud.

She wrote it down on a piece of paper, and slid it in her cubby. Tomorrow, they were going to clean their cubbies out once more. And now, they'd see all the incriminating evidence. If this was Riverdale, she would be Betty when her mother, or Chic, killed someone over self defense.

Now, this was her tell-tale heart. Except, much less to a certain severity and degree. One which would make her cry more, but one, which would have the same complications. One which she would make it out alive, but one with worse reproduisions. She had no clue what to do, and was forced to turn herself over to the one thing that she knew how to do that was not dance. The one thing that of which she felt right to do. Just, not now. After Nationals. She had to wait till the team was finished celebrating their win in hopes of not distracting herself. Of course, she hoped that the incriminating evidence would not be... enough to send her to jail. However, she was saving herself.

She was saving her life.

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