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"He quit his job in protest It was a major story And he’s been retired ever since Occasionally he gives a talk about world affairs at the local college," Ansley said, "but mostly he just raises horses at his ranch"

"He sounds perfect," I said

"He’s notoriously cranky," Ansley warned

"Get , I called the nuiven me It was one o’clock and I knew I’d probably wake hiruff tenor of his voice, however, it was clear that even though he ake, calls at this late hour were not okay

"Mr Henley," I began,

"Who the hell is this, and why in God’s na at this hour?"

"I’m sorry it’s so late My name’s Brit Hemphill I’m a student, well more like an inmate, really, at Red Rock Acade up"

"No, please don’t hang up I go to this school, it’s really a boot cas here, really awful I thought you ht want to do a story"

"I’m retired Leave me alone"

"I know you are, but I just don’t--I don’t knohat else to do So off

"You da up

I snuck back into my room, climbed into bed, and threwto listen But as I was feeling sorry for myself, I heard Jed’s voice in my head, and I so wanted to be the rock star he seeain

The second tihed "Kid, do you knoho I a a bunch of stuff in the seventies, right?"

"Do your homework, kid I’ve covered wars, revolutions, assassinations And you want me to tell the world about a bunch of whiny rich kids who think their school’s too tough?"

"It’s not like that"

Henley chuckled again "Maybe next I can do an exposé on the price-gouging of lip gloss" Then, still laughing, he hung up

This was going to be tougher than I thought But I wasn’t about to give in I called another

"You’re crazy, darling And I love you for it," Bebe said

"This does kick it up a level," Cassie said

"I know, but it’s not working He laughed at innin’ to think those are words to live by"

"But I feel like he’s our best hope," I said "I ative journalist living out here? If we can just get him to believe us To make the case"

"So make the case," V said She looked at me with that same mix of exasperation and helpfulness she had back when I was on Level One and was stubbornly refusing to tell Sheriff that I was ready to face myself


"My dad had a bunch of hotshot journalist friends," V said "All they care about is a juicy story They can sood story"

I looked at her She was offering help, but there was that coldness again It had been that way since she’d gotten off Level Two, since I’d come up with my plan, since she’d told me to hold on to the pass key and said it was time for me to be the keeper of the flame for a while I couldn’t tell if she knew that I was still kindathis charge and not her Maybe she didn’t want there to be any charge at all

Another night, another break-in This time it was the computer room, where Level Sixers were allowed to send e-in code Ansley and Beth had told me that when they were at Red Rock, the code had been--oh so ied it But never underestimate the laziness of Red Rock Because when the password box popped up and I typed in TEENHELP--expecting the coo off--Internet Explorer opened up and I heard the ling First I looked up Skip Henley I was so e stories in the seventies, but since then, he’d covered lots of huua, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa He was as famous a journalist as Walter Cronkite, and I’d disrespected hiled Red Rock I didn’t get led Dr Clayton and then Bud "Sheriff" Austin, and found nothing I was about to give up, but then I googled "Austin," "fors Gazette: