Chapter 1: The Saga Begins

          When some people are born, their life-road is preplanned, and they have no control over it, this is called "fate."

April 19, 1995 4:30pm ET

          It was a beautiful spring day in Orlando, Florida.  As the sun slowly set in the background, five boys played touch football in the middle of a random street in a quiet neighborhood.  A short stocky boy named Doug threw the ball to his friend Bobby who easily caught it.  He was tackled quickly by a young man named Zhane, who recovered the ball, and promptly ran it in for a touchdown.  "Yay!, way to go Zhaney!" yelled Allison.  Allison Chase, a pretty blonde girl slowly walked up to Zhane and kissed his cheek.  "Zhane, I'm going to the mall with my sister in a little bit, I will call you later. . .ok?"  Zhane grinned and nodded, "Sure Ali, be careful sweetie." Allison laughed at him, and the two leaned in to kiss each other.  They had just closed their eyes, when a football hit Zhane in the head, knocking him sideways. "Doug! you punk!" Zhane half grinned, because he could never get mad at his friend, even though he missed his opportunity to kiss Allison goodbye, and his head hurt to boot.

          Zhane bent over to pick up the football and when he looked up, Allison was walking into her home, just two yards down.  Zhane grinned and then winged the ball at Doug, which nailed him in the stomach.  Doug quickly caught his breath and trying to act mad, he ran at Zhane who quickly side stepped and tripped his attacker.  Doug caught his footing, and managed to stay on his feet.  While still gasping for air, Doug commented "I still say that karate crap won't help you in a  REAL fight."  Zhane had his arms crossed and his eyes closed, and said nothing.  He turned his head to Ali's house, missing her already.

          Allison combed her golden hair in front of the hall mirror, humming the tune to a song about two small birds who manage to make it through anything together.  A metaphor that she thought perfectly reflected her relationship with Zhane.  She smiled and touched the necklace that Zhane had given to her for her birthday: a beautiful heart on a silver chain.  Looking up at herself in the mirror, she wondered what Zhane saw in her.  She had always questioned that, yet she never had the answer.  Allison loved everything about Zhane.  His looks, his humor, the way she felt safe and loved around him.  She always missed him, even when she was with him, because she knew she would have leave him all too soon.  She just knew that someday they would be together forever.  Hearing the honk of a car, she turned her head and looked out the window.  Her sister had just pulled into the driveway...grabbing her purse, she ran outside.

          Zhane and his friends were sitting on the curb drinking water when Zhane sensed Ali.  He stopped and watched her.  It seemed almost slow motion: the way she stepped off the porch, the way her hair blew around her.  Zhane laughed, thinking it looked like a shampoo commercial or something.  Doug rolled his eyes, and smirked at his friend.  Zhane turned to him, and flicked his ear "ouch, that hurt you sonofa..." Doug swung at Zhane, who this time let Doug connect.  Zhane laughed again, this time at Doug, "if that karate stuff doesn't work in a real fight, at least I don't need to worry about the strength of your punches."  Bobby, Brian, and Sam all laughed at Doug, who tackled Zhane.  The two boys rolled around in the grass playfully fighting each other.  Hearing the screech of car tires, the two stopped and looked up.  Wide-eyed, the boys watched a pickup truck tear around the far end of the neighborhood block, rip past the quintet of boys, and run head on into the back left side of Ali's sister's car as she was backing out of the driveway.

          With a sick feeling in his stomach, Zhane watched in horror as the car flipped over one time, and burst into flame.  The truck driver drove
off, in an inebriated stupor.  Zhane rose, and ran to
the burning car, but he couldn't move, besides the
fact that his legs felt like lead and his arms and
upper torso were like moving in Jell-O, his friends
were also holding him back, tears streamed down
his face, as he choked out "Alliii!" one last time...
one last time... that was the last time Zhane said
her name, aloud anyway...          

August 16th, 1995

          As Zhane's family pulled into his new town, Angel Grove, he thought to himself that the courthouse looked a lot like the one in Back to the Future.  Zhane didn't even smile at his thought, he hadn't in months...not since Allison's death.  His parents 'assumed' that moving him to another state all the way across the nation would help him.  But it was far worse leaving her memory behind.  Since that day, Zhane had been stuck in a bad mood, he hardly talked at all, and had quit martial arts and Boy Scouts.  Zhane, along with his younger brother John and sister Lorraine, would be starting school soon.  Zhane would be a Freshman this year. His parents had hoped it would do him some good to get a fresh start in a new place.  Zhane resented his parents for even thinking he could forget about what had happened to Allison.  Even though he knew it wasn't her fault, he hated Allison's sister who lived through the wreck, with nothing but a broken clavicle.  He also hated the drunk driver who killed Ali.  The driver had made a 'clean' get-a-way because Zhane and the guys didn't get his tag number.  He was too busy trying to get to Ali, and the boys were doing their best to hold him back.  Though in retrospect, Zhane might have died in the pending explosion...but he would be with Ali, and that was all he cared about.

          Zhane awoke suddenly as his dad Larry backed the U-Haul Truck into their new driveway.  He hoped that the wreck had only been a dream, but he awoke the same way every time, knowing that Ali was not gone...dead...stolen!  Zhane closed his eyes, fighting back tears as he sat on the porch of their new house.  John and Lorraine, eager to be "big kids" helped their father unload the truck while Zhane's mom, Diane, sorted through boxes.  The Knight Family hadn't expected much of Zhane in the last few months, so they let him be.  Zhane finally cried himself to sleep on the porch swing.

To be continued....