“Good afternoon, Teri,” Dr. Fiedler said. “You’re after school quite late.”
Teri didn’t say anything. She couldn’t. Fiedler’s smile stopped below his nose and didn’t even get close to his eyes. The grey orbs bored into her brain.
“We were just getting a little extra help with math,” Morgan said.
The excuse sounded all the less believable because of the way the words stuck in Morgan’s throat. Fiedler’s neck moved slowly, his eyes staying fixed on Teri as he turned. Only when his neck stopped did his eyes flash over to Morgan.
Now that Dr. Fiedler’s stare was elsewhere, Teri’s brained stuttered into motion again. They needed to get out of here. Those FBI agents would soon expand their search from the auditorium and the surrounding halls to the whole school. As soon as she started to move, Dr. Fiedler’s eyes were back on her.
“Math is a worthy subject,” he said. “But you should be staying after for help with chemistry. Your understanding of the discipline is severely lacking.”
Another time, Teri would’ve wilted under the accurate description of her chemistry knowledge. Right now, she had other things on her mind. What was Fiedler really doing here at Louis Harbor High? Teaching chemistry was just a cover. Whatever he was working on with Taggert and the FBI was his real job.
The only way to escape the chemistry teacher would be to push past him and make a break for the door. Teri didn’t want to be the first one to move. The others were just as paralyzed. They all stood there as they heard brisk footsteps coming up behind them. Teri didn’t turn around, fearing what she might see.
“You kids there, turn around. We have some questions.”
Teri glanced to either side. Morgan, Aiden, and Max stared back. With a sigh, Teri spun around very slowly. As soon as she faced the FBI agents, she could tell she was recognized. Special Agent Taggert had been the one asking the questions yesterday, but these two must’ve been paying more attention to Teri and her friends than they’d seemed to.
“Can you account for your whereabouts for the last five minutes?” one of the agents asked.
The thought of lying to the FBI gave Teri pains in her stomach, she didn’t know how Morgan had managed it with Fiedler.
“These four just came from math tutoring,” Dr. Fiedler said.
At first Teri was elated that the chemistry teacher had been fooled, but then her skin crawled. That same smile stayed on Fiedler’s lips, totally devoid of any real happiness. The FBI agents looked like the wanted to question Fiedler’s answer, but they bit their tongues. Teri wasn’t positive, but she was pretty sure Dr. Fiedler had knowingly lied to them. But why? He was working with Taggert and his agents.
After a few more moments of awkward silence, Dr. Fiedler stepped out of the way and let the four of them through the door. It was all Teri could do to keep from breaking into a sprint when she stepped on the asphalt. The four of them piled into Aiden’s car, no one speaking as seatbelts clicked into place and the car rumbled and coughed to life.
Aiden left the parking lot behind and Teri’s breath came a little easier. Her temples were throbbing, the beginnings of a monster headache. When Aiden pulled off at the first side street, that headache threatened to become a migraine.
“What are you doing?” Teri’s fear made her forget to be nice to Aiden, no matter how cute he was.
“We’re going to wait here until Dr. Fiedler leaves, and follow him. We’re getting answers.”