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I Faught The Law is the twenty-third chapter of Last Dance and was published on February 17.

Synopsis

When confronted with the task of getting the names in to the Nationals board, Richelle wonders if it is the end of the line with her dance career. Meanwhile, Ally is torn between staying loyal to the Gemini's, a team which she does not even want to be on, or helping The Next Step, which leads to ground rules being set in stone for her time at Gemini.

Chapter

A-troupe was hanging out together; Piper talking to Amy like the usual. Josh and Finn conversing about their life boredom. Michelle hanging around the faculty of the studio, as she'd basically been promoted to 'dance captain's decoy' or whatever. Kenzie and Zara stood along, whilst Jacquie and Noah talked, happy that their relationship was finally in a good place. Not one with potential to die out, an everlasting one. One that could go on for eons. Noah knew he messed up, and so did Jacquie. They were better now, more mature. They could handle this.

"alright." Michelle said, turning to the team. The room fell dead silent. "Please pay attention to Thalia." They could not all help but notice that Emily had left. Had she left for good, or would she soon reappear into their lives again? They remembered that the last time anyone on the team had spoken to her, a big fight had erupted. So maybe they had gotten rid of the burden for good?

"Alright. Nationals is in less then two weeks and we've yet to send our names in." Thalia started. "Now, it's supposed to coast 40 per person for the hotel room, 100 dollars admission for the actual competition and 16 per costume." Thalia said as she handed around the form to everyone. Richelle gave a look, scared about potentially being unable to pay anything. "Is anything wrong?" Thalia asked Richelle, "because it looks like something is troubling you.." She said.

"No, no. I'm fine." Richelle said.

"Oh really, because you don't look fine." Thalia said.

"I am fine." Richelle reassured her, lying, as she went to the lockers, and Ozzy followed along.

-

Kenzie was practicing her jumps and kicks, and everything, hoping that she would be good enough. She needed this and needed to do good. She could not afford to be the soul reason of why they'd gone, leaving. Even if she was just an alternate, she needed to be on the ball at all times. Always keeping her guard up. Never letting it down.

Just then, the phone rang.

She walked over to it and picked it up. "Yes? This is Kenzie of Next Step Dance Studio speaking." Kenzie spoke into her phone,

"Hello, Kenzie. We want to inform you about a potential chance of dancing with Gemini?" The studio owner suggested. "We have another spot on the team ready and it has your name on it. You wanna take it?"

Kenzie immediately said yes, the studio owner hung up. Meanwhile, Skylar, the Gemini's dance captain and Madison, their star, were giggling. "She has no clue what's coming for her." Skylar said. "She's only being used so that way she can be brought back to TNS the day they leave for nationals. They won't have enough dancers. Then we'll hit them where they're weak; Richelle and Ozzy. They need to go."

"I know right? It's insane how oblivious they are." Madison laughed. "We got this in the bag - we are for sure going to win." She smiled, but Ally was listening in, and knew that she had to tell Kenzie before it was too late.

-

Richelle stormed into the lockers, grabbing everything. "I am so done with this studio! I can't pay my fees, I can't do anything. I can't get my patents signatures. I can't dance. I am not going to be able to dance. I can't let this happen. I'm screwed!" Richelle yelled.

Her dad would not let her dance, and her parents were divorced. Her mom was struggling with bills, and Richelle knew that it meant that she'd be unable to help her. But her dad would not even allow her to dance. Like, seriously? Really? This was her heart and soul - everything she is, everything she was and everything she is going to be was invested in dance. Not going was not an option at this point.

"I feel you. Look, I can help." Ozzy said, hopeful. "My brother, he deals in a lot of illegal goods. If you blackmail him, I'm sure you can get money and forgery too." Ozzy said.

Richelle responded to this in a shocking way, whilst Ozzy gave a frown, realizing that the blonde would probably go to the police. But, she shockingly spoke out. "Ozzy, you're a genius! Let's go now. Or well, when or where is he?" She asked.

"He's coming back home from college this weekend, tonight actually. So we can do the deal then." Ozzy said, and Richelle hugged her boyfriend.

"You're the best!" Ozzy said, and Ozzy knew that this was dangerous, allowing his girlfriend to go into the dark side, the life of a criminal. But he knew that this was for her sanity. So therefore he'd just sit back, and allow Richelle to do her thing. Besides, a little taste of the dark side would not be too harmful, right? Unfortunately, they did not see the severity of it at the time when the red light was staring them down in the eye right at that very moment; fate.

-

Ozzy's brother, Roderick, sat at a wooden table. Richelle and Ozzy walked in, and Ozzy stood on the right hand side of the table, while Richelle faced the brother. 

"Look, I've heard about your infamous dealings, the shady illegal business stuff you've been doing." Richelle began. "If you do some stuff for me, I won't tell anyone about this, especially the cops."

Roderick sighed. "Brother, why did you tell her about my dealings?" Roderick asked. "Wait, how do you know?" Roderick asked.

"Oh, I was snooping through your phone and found your listings. I needed a photo of you for an assignment in school last year. Anyways." Ozzy said. 

"Alright." Roderick spoke aloud. "What do you need? R-"

"Forgery and money." Richelle said. "And make sure this goes for free." Richelle said, and then handed Roderick the form for the dance competition. After which, she laid a photo of her mother's signature out, while he eyed the form for the competition.

"You my friend have got yourself a deal." Roderick began but it was slow.

Richelle, after a few minutes, discovered that she was impatient and growled. "Could you hurry up maybe? This is due today." She growled.

"Sorry, but I'm no god." Roderick said. "Forgery's usually take a very long time, because I suck at memorizing, I mean, I'm human. So you're going to have to wait a few days. Probably a week at the earliest." Roderick spoke tensely. Hoping to not threaten the girls demeanor.

"I am sorry did you not hear me? I need this done today! Listen kiddo. If you don't do this in ten minutes, I'm calling the cops." Richelle demanded, and that made Roderick scurry along with nerves tingling throughout his now sacredly-lit body. Wanting to not be jailed. He did something that normally would have taken about a month, in ten minutes, and handed it back.

"Here you go." Roderick said, and passed the form back over to Richelle, and then a smirk grew on Richelle's face as she'd completed her mission.

"Thank you so much... Umm I did not get your name." Richelle said.

"Roderick,"

"Thank you so much Roderick! Now I can finally dance again!" Richelle declared and then rushed off to send it back to Eldon and the others. 

-

Richelle walked in, and quietly handed in the money which she had acquired from the blackmail and the form, as well as the forged signature of her mother. And handed it in. "Here my form and the money is." Richelle said, and Thalia smiled.

"Thanks." Thalia said. "Did you get everything sorted out? I noticed you seemed off when we talked about the money."

"Yeah. I am fine." Richelle said. "I got everything sorted out. I have everything," Richelle said, and sighed, before walking off. She noticed Kenzie in the corner of her eye, walking into the office, when she was heading out.

Kenzie walked into the studio, flashing a smile at Chloe, Eldon and Thalia. "I have some bad news to bring you guys." Kenzie said.

"What is it?" Eldon asked. 

"I am leaving the studio for the Gemini's." Kenzie said, and Ally rushed to see that it was already too late. Kenzie had already said it; hopefully, she could make up for lost time and say it right after. When she went out.

"Thank you for telling us." Thalia said.

"No problem." Kenzie said, and then began to head off. But she was stopped by Ally. "What do you want?" Kenzie asked. "You've been ruining everyone's lives lately, I can't let you ruin my life too." She said.

"I'm sorry if I said or did anything. But, I just want to let you know that I'm a spy for Gemini...." She said. "They want to kick you off of the team on the day of, and I can't let that happen. They say it is to make The Next Step weaker then ever. But there is no way that we can allow that to happen, right?" Ally asked.

"Wow..." Kenzie said. "I hope it's not too late." She said and then headed back in. "I had a change of-"

Chloe immediately shot the girl down. "I'm very sorry, but we just sent the names in. We can't qualify you as a member of our team."

Kenzie's face dimmed, sad that she was now home to no studio. Her commitment to dance, her attitude? Maybe it was for the best. She walked off sad, and without comfort. She turned over to Ally. "Thanks a lot. I had a home, now I don't." Kenzie said.

"Well, at least now you don't face rejection from Gemini," Ally tried to get the hopes up.

"Leave me alone!" She yelled, frustrated and ran off. A frown growing on the girl who was the spy's face. However, the one thing that neither of them noticed, was that Richelle had listened in, at least, until the part about Ally being a spy from Gemini....

-

Ally returned to her new unloving home, as she closed the door behind her, turning towards the studio owner. "You said that you wanted to speak to me?" She asked, concern growing over her face, overfilling her emotions with weariness. Scared of what was to happen.  She slowly perambulated to the adjacent of where the studio owner sat.

"Yes." The studio owner said, and handed Ally a slip of paper that looked as if it were the standard size. Although, it had words.

"What's this?" Ally asked, scrolling her eyes through carefully, as she was starting to read what the contents of the paper had asked her about, and it made no sense.

"A contract. We can't have anything like with the tapes of the dances ever happen again, now can we? This is just to make sure that whenever we say to hand over evidence that could be incriminating to The Next Step over to me, for you to report everything to us, and everything, and hand over to us whatever we may want you to hand over to us. Oh, and you can't tell anyone about this. And all you need to do is sign."

Ally gulped. Could she really do this? Could she really betray her friends like this? No, she could not. But she had to. It was better for her to try and protect her teammates then let it slip under the hands of an enemy, one who'd actually want the positon. She was doing it for the safety of the team, something of which she hoped that they'd understand, as in the next few seconds, she had signed her life away to the program. At least until after Nationals, however, she looked over at one loophole of which Gemini had put in the fine print.

That if she tore it up, then this would all be for nothing. She'd be allowed to break everything. She knew that she had to use it to her advantage. But not now, not ever. She had to stay like this so she could save them. It was no hope. She had her heart set on saving The Next Step, and unfortunately, that meant breaking The Next Step.

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