HOTH Season 3, Part 3

I had so much fun plotting this part and writing it out in advance. And then I took the pictures at the park and the lighting was terrible, even using the reflector shield. I should’ve found a shady spot, but… nope. 😒

Nevertheless, I hope you enjoy part 3 of season 3 of Hang on to Hope! If you need a quick refresher or are simply checking this out for the first time, here are the links to the previous parts of season 3.

Part 1
Part 2

And without farther ado!

Issa’s POV

“I—I—” I can’t seem to find the words now as Lexi runs up behind me. This makes no sense.

“Yeah?” Connor smiles kindly through his tears, and I think it’s sincere. It encourages me to get the words out as Lexi joins my side.

“I—I’m going to help you,” I say. “And I’m going to do whatever I can to keep Emma from calling the police.”

I can hear Lexi’s jaw drop behind me at the idea. “But—that’s—wrong!”

I don’t care.

Connor is staring at me like he can’t believe it. “But—why?” He asks softly.

I stare at him for a long time. It’s certainly not because I have any positive view of him whatsoever. “Because I know what it feels like to be hopeless and I’m telling you that there’s hope to hang on to.”

Connor gawks at me until his jaw finally closes. He smiles through his tears and blinks his wet eyes. “Th—thank you,” he stammers. “Thank you so much, Issa.”

He just said thank you to me? I thought he hated to me. He’s being so… nice. Why the change?

“Come on,” I sigh. “We need to formulate a plan.”

Lexi is uneasy. “I don’t think you guys should do this.”

“It doesn’t matter, because you’re doing it too.” I grab her wrist and pull a stuttering and arguing Lexi behind me as Connor follows with a smile.

“Shh!” I hiss under my breath once I hear the voices of Jackson, Amy, and Emma conversing together. I press Lexi up against the wall with me, and Connor follows suit.

Together, we eavesdrop on their conversation.

“So I should be the one to call the authorities,” Emma finishes her statement.

Jackson and Amy both sigh in unison. “Fine,” Jackson says. “You may call them. When do their offices open?”

A short moment of silence follows, and I peek just a little around the corner so I can actually see what’s happening.

“Ugh, seriously? Why do Thanksgiving break times have to run so late? They’re only open from after lunch until six PM.”

Amy nods. “You may call them.”

Emma squeals and throws her arms around Amy. “Thank you so much, Mom! Your daughter just cracked her very first case—this is so exciting!”

Amy smiles and hugs Emma back. “You’re welcome. But…”

Emma pulls away and frowns. “But?”

“I need you to take the kids to the park today. You know, family bonding time with them. Can you do that?”

“But—Mom! I need to be ready right after lunch so I can call them!”

“No buts.”

Emma looks deflated, but I do not. A smirk lights up my face, and a glimmer of hope rises. We have plenty of time to delay that call.

I turn back to Lexi and Connor and nod. “Come on, guys. Let’s get planning.”

The worst, creepiest lighting and editing job… ever. And this isn’t even at the park yet.

“What are we going to plan?” Connor asks as I lead them through the backyard to a secluded spot where we can plan in privacy.

I turn my head to face him and kind of smile a little. “We’re both experienced in pranks, right?”

Lexi humphs. “I’m not.”

Connor grins a little. “Very.”

My smile grows wider. “And if we’re not pranking each other, we can prank—”

Lexi groans. “Don’t say it.”

“Emma,” Connor finishes, and he begins to laugh.

Lexi humphs again. “As long as the pranks are harmless and you understand I’m only doing this because I wanna help too.”

Connor smiles. “Of course.”

I whip out my notebook, and to my surprise, Connor whips out one of his.

“Prank ideas?” I ask.

Connor grins. “Prank ideas.”

He’s being so nice. Why the change?

He flips his notebook open and allows me to look. I take one glance at the very first prank he has written down and burst out laughing.



Before we have a chance to put any of our plans into action, we’ve eaten an early lunch and are sent with Emma to the park.

“How old do they think we are, five?” I grumpily complain as we walk down the sidewalk. Emma stalks off to a bench while we head toward the playground. “What are we even supposed to do here?”

Connor shrugs. “We could organize a game of hide-and-seek?”

“That sounds fun!” Lexi agrees.

I frown. “That’s boring. How about hide-and-go-seek tag? Or better yet—”

“Hide-and-go-seek ninja tag,” Connor finishes, and I grin.

We kind of think the same? And he’s being so nice. Why the change?

“Let’s do it.”

Connor nods and points ahead of us. “Okay. How about we play in that field way over—”


A voice breaks through his own as a redhead with glasses comes running up to him. I instantly recognize her as Sarah and wave happily.

Connor does not look so happy to see her. His face instantly pales as she draws near, and Sarah doesn’t even notice me.

“I want my necklace back,” she says. “I did what you asked. She’s dead.”

My jaw drops. “What in the world? What did you ask her to do, Connor?”

Sarah turns pale now. “Oh, I—”

Connor winces but doesn’t avoid the subject. “Issa…”

Sarah backs away a little bit, which doesn’t help Connor at all. “Connor Cavan— I mean DaCosta!” I shout. “What is she talking about?”

Tears smart Connor’s eyes again. “I—I stole her grandmother’s necklace from her and made her do something terrible.”

I get in his face. “She said ‘she’s dead’. What. Did. You. Make. Her. Do?”

“Coconut,” is all Connor croaks.

I step back. “What?”

“I’m so sorry,” he immediately apologizes. “I regret it with everything. I made Sarah stage it so Coconut would be in the middle of the road and get run over.”

His words come as a punch in the gut, and I realize I can no longer breathe. Fresh tears spring to my eyes when I think of my beloved and now dead pet.

“I’m so sorry!” Connor wails, looking like he’s about to cry too. He continues apologizing multiple times while I try to fight my tears. But why? I’m sick and tired of wondering Why the change?, but Lexi just glares at Connor to stop talking.

Connor swallows and sadly turns to Sarah. “I have your necklace in my backpack in the car. I’ll be right back.” He blinks a little faster in an attempt to keep from crying. I’ve never seen Connor like this. “I’m so sorry I made you do this.”

Sarah looks surprised that he’s apologizing after how mean and cruel he must’ve been to her, but she accepts his apology with “Oh. It’s—okay, I guess.”

Connor leaves for the car to go get Sarah’s necklace while Sarah turns to me. “Issa—I’m so sorry I killed your pet. But I couldn’t risk him destroying my grandmother’s pearl necklace!”

I can’t take it anymore. I quickly cry while Connor is gone, and Lexi knows me so well. She wraps her arms around me in a hug while I sob, and Sarah just stands their in guilt and remorse.

When I hear Connor returning, I quickly pull away, swiping my tears with a sniff. Connor hands Sarah her necklace, and she smiles a little at finally being given it back.

“Thanks for at least keeping your word and not destroying it since I did what you said.”

Connor winces. “I shouldn’t have made you do that.”

Turning to me a final time before she leaves, Sarah says, “Please forgive me.”

When Sarah leaves, I’m so shaky I nearly jump when Emma steps out of the shadows. The sneaky creep has been spying on us the entire time!

“So that’s how their pet died,” she sneers at Connor. “Your parents are going to probably have to face charges for what you made that girl do. That’s serious animal abuse.”

Connor’s face flashes with desperation. “Don’t tell them!” He cries. “They’ll view me as even more of a nuisance than I already am! They’ll hate me!”

The words are out before he knows it, and as soon as they are, Connor clamps his mouth shut and blushes a little as he blinks back hot tears of frustration.

Emma just looks amused and quickly pulls out her phone to jot down what he said to document it into the details of the case.

“No— no—please don’t write that down!” Connor begs, reaching for her phone.

Emma holds it out of his grasp and frowns at him. “It’s an important detail of the case. I have to write it down.”

She looks back at her phone again and sighs. “I want to get home so I can call the authorities in silence without all of these kids screaming and park commotion in the background. And I have to do it before the office closes.” She frowns. “You guys have fifteen minutes. I’ll be busy writing this down, so don’t disturb me again.”

Emma returns to the bench she’s been sitting on as all three of us look at each other. Connor sighs in absolute misery. I’ve never seen Connor like this—ever.

Lexi begins walking along the sidewalk in silence toward the field, and despite the fact that I don’t really feel like playing hide-and-go-seek ninja tag anymore, I join her.

That’s when a ball rolls in the middle of the sidewalk and I trip on it. Connor reaches to help me, but he doesn’t catch me in time.

The rough concrete comes flying toward my face, and the ball pops beneath my weight, echoed by an “Ah!” I cry out.

“Kid!” Someone shouts at me.

I pick myself up off the ground to face an angry boy of about fourteen or fifteen years old. He seems to tower over me.

“Sorry!” I pant out, catching my breath from the fall.

“You popped my ball!” He yells in fury. He’s glaring death at me. This kid has serious anger issues. “You’re dead.”

“Look, dude, I’m sorry,” I say, rolling my eyes.

I bend down to pickup the deflated beach-looking ball, but as I stand up with it, the boy roughly snatches it out of my hands and angrily shoves me back down to the ground.

The unforgiving concrete scrapes my knees and hands, and I grit my teeth in pain.

I pull myself back to my feet, but instead of facing the bully’s infuriated face and flaming eyes, Connor is standing between him and me.

“Leave her alone.”

To be continued… in HOTH Season 3, Part 4!

Coming up next on Hang on to Hope:

The bully glares at him and scoffs. “Or what?”

“Or I swear you’ll regret it.”

The bully rolls his eyes, but Connor seals the deal by swinging a fist toward his face and socking him in the nose.

😮 Dang, Connor.

If you’re looking forward to part 4, let me know! Just hit “like” and leave a comment below!

2017-10-27T12:03:52-05:00 October 26th, 2017|80 Comments


  1. Avatar
    The Dolls’ Mom from AG Doll Dreams October 27, 2017 at 12:14 pm - Reply

    AHHHHHHHHH CONNOR YOU ARE SO SWEET XD but I am soooo with Issa, why are you being so nice? BAD EMMA! BAD BAD EMMA!!! I CANNOT BELIEVE YOU!!! Madi, you are so full of plot twists!!!!! AHHHHHH!!!!

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 6:59 pm - Reply

      AHH AWWWW I KNOW RIGHT. Connor is one of my favorite characters. XDD HEHE PLOT TWISTS! I really do like them. XD Thanks for commenting!

      • Avatar
        agdolldreams October 29, 2017 at 8:34 am - Reply

        wait what? I can actually comment with my WordPress account? YESSS FINALLY!!! ahem. XD Anywhoooo, I just wanted to add a question: ARE. WE. EVER. GOING. TO. SEE. SARAH. AGAIAINNNNNNNN!!!?!? ?!!?!?!? XD

        • Madison
          Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:08 pm - Reply

          HEHEHEHEEE! And YAY THAT’S GREAT! And hmm… not in season 3, no, but she just might return in season 4! 😉

          • Avatar
            agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:10 pm - Reply

            WOW YEEESS oooohhhh, I have an idea! WHAT IF ISSA’S MOM COMES TO TAKE HER AWAY?!?!? That would be crazy!

            • Madison
              Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:11 pm - Reply


              • Avatar
                agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:12 pm - Reply


                • Madison
                  Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:13 pm - Reply

                  WOAHHHH VERY GOOD GUESS! XDD Try to keep it a secret >:)

                  • Avatar
                    agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:14 pm - Reply

                    Ok! I can’t hardly contain it, it’s so crazy!!!! Now I want SEASON THREE AND SEASON FOUR NOWWWWW!!!!! XDDDD

                    • Madison
                      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:14 pm

                      LOL! Season 4 is unfortunately coming in… 2018… XDDD

                    • Avatar
                      agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:15 pm

                      NOOOOO! That is very sad. So you have started working on it!?!?

                    • Madison
                      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:17 pm

                      Haha, I like doing one big season a year because they are SO. MUCH. WORK. XD I haven’t started working on it yet, but I’ll start working on it in the summer of 2018!

                    • Avatar
                      agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:19 pm

                      Awesome! Yeah, that would be pretty hard to do more than one a year.

                    • Madison
                      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:20 pm

                      Definitely! I COULD do it, but I like having fun with separate photostories that aren’t in a series, too, so I wanna make plenty of time for those. XD

                    • Avatar
                      agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:21 pm

                      Yeah, that’s very true. Maelyn from AAG said that you are doing a giveaway, but I didn’t see the post. 🤔 XD

                    • Madison
                      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:22 pm

                      Yep, I’m doing a giveaway today! The post just isn’t up yet, I’m working on replying to comments first. The post should be up really soon, though!

                    • Avatar
                      agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:23 pm

                      Ok, awesome! HAPPY 5 YEAR BLOGVERSERY!!!!!!!

                    • Madison
                      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:27 pm

                      Awww, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!

                    • Avatar
                      agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:25 pm

                      Well, I’m probably keeping you from replying to comments, so I better let you get back to work. XD

                    • Madison
                      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:28 pm

                      Haha, you’re not, it’s fine! I do a lot of multitasking. XD

                    • Avatar
                      agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:41 pm

                      LOL! I have to go do stuff at my church. I will talk to you soon! 😁😁😁😁

                    • Madison
                      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:42 pm

                      Ooh, awesome! Have fun! Talk to you soon! 😀

                    • Avatar
                      agdolldreams November 4, 2017 at 2:42 pm

                      Ok! 😁😁😁😁

  2. Avatar
    Charis Rae • October 27, 2017 at 12:40 pm - Reply

    AGH! I’m shipping Connor and Issa so much rn… XD

  3. Avatar
    Jewel October 27, 2017 at 1:14 pm - Reply

    EEEEEEEE! I LOVE IT! Great job Madi! Yay! I was right about Del being the bully. She looks great. Man, Emma is kind of mean. Also, I love when the bad guy turns into the good guy. So I’m lovin’ this Connor being protective thing. Great job Madi!

    I should have the next part of my series up today!

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:04 pm - Reply

      Thank you SOOO much, Jewel! I love it when the bad guy turns into a good guy, too! Thanks so much!

      P.S. OOH, YAY! I commented!

  4. Avatar
    Alyse October 27, 2017 at 1:14 pm - Reply


  5. Avatar
    meandmydogsblog October 27, 2017 at 1:15 pm - Reply

    EMMA YOU ARE BEING SO MEAN!! And OMW I LOVE conner now, I feel so sorry for him!!

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:04 pm - Reply

      AHH SHE IS! Awww ME TOO, he’s one of my favorite characters!

  6. Avatar
    Sassafras October 27, 2017 at 1:22 pm - Reply

    This photo story is so fascinating, Madison! I wonder what is going to happen to Issa and Conner, and also if Emma will actually make her call or not! Oh by the way, I don’t think your pictures are bad at all. They seem like your normal, high quality pictures to me. 🙂

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:05 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much, Sassafras! And awww, I’m SO glad you like the pictures! That means so much! 😀

  7. Avatar
    Clara October 27, 2017 at 1:57 pm - Reply

    Hey, did my comment go through? It said “Jetpack unexpectedly closed the connection.” Weird. XD

    -Clara <3

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:06 pm - Reply

      Actually, it didn’t! That’s so weird… BAD JETPACK. XD

      • Avatar
        Clara October 28, 2017 at 7:14 pm - Reply

        Huh, that’s super odd! Well, I don’t remember exactly what I said in the other comment, but basically I LOVED THIS PART AND I WANT MORE. XD (Also I will never, ever forgive Connor for what he did to Coconut. *crosses arms*)

        • Madison
          Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:15 pm - Reply

          So sorry about that! Haha, thank you SOOO much!

          (XDD Connor wishes you would. XD)

          • Avatar
            Clara October 28, 2017 at 7:32 pm - Reply

            Well, sorry, Connor. Not happening. XD

  8. Avatar
    light4thelord October 27, 2017 at 2:14 pm - Reply

    Poor Connor.
    In a way, I can’t wait for next Friday. But it also means only one week until NAtionals, so uh..
    ~ Light4theLord

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:06 pm - Reply


      Poor wittle Connor. XD

      GASP. You’re going to do AMAZING!

  9. Avatar
    AAG October 27, 2017 at 2:41 pm - Reply


    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:07 pm - Reply


  10. Avatar
    modestmylife October 27, 2017 at 2:47 pm - Reply

    I LOVE it! She says “Why the change” a lot. And the lighting wasn’t that bad! Can’t wait for part 4!!!

  11. Avatar
    Anonymous October 27, 2017 at 4:50 pm - Reply

    Its Marissa and Sierra we liked the Hang on to Hope you just made with Maryellen

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:08 pm - Reply

      Thank you SO much for letting me borrow Maryellen, guys! <3

  12. Avatar
    olivehiddenhollow October 27, 2017 at 5:09 pm - Reply


  13. Avatar
    Liv October 27, 2017 at 8:53 pm - Reply

    Yes yes yes YES!!!!! OH MY GOODNESS THIS IS THE BEST EVER!!!!! It kinda makes Emma the bad guy? Why did Connor run away???? Del makes a great bully Lol! Did Connor really change? He is protecting Issa! Can he be trusted???? Do Connor’s parents really hate him? So many questions!!!! Holy guacamole!!!! This is FANTASTIC!!!!

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:09 pm - Reply

      AWWWWW THANK YOU SO MUCH LIV!! You’re right, it DOES. Emma is part of the antagonistic force! Haha, Del says thanks. XD HEHE QUESTIONS. Thank you SO much again, Liv!!

  14. Avatar
    From a Doll's Perspective (Anna) October 28, 2017 at 8:48 am - Reply

    My favorite character is now Connor.

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:09 pm - Reply

      He’s one of my favorites, too!

  15. Avatar
    Katie October 28, 2017 at 1:18 pm - Reply

    Wow! This is so interesting, LOL I think Del is having fun XD awesome job Madison! Can’t wait for the next part!!!!
    – Katie

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:09 pm - Reply

      LOL, she definitely is. XDD Thank you SO much, Katie!

  16. Avatar
    The Human October 28, 2017 at 2:39 pm - Reply

    Wut?! Connor?! Ok, just pointing it out, Sarah didn’t seem very sorry. XD
    ~ The Human

    • Madison
      Madison October 28, 2017 at 7:10 pm - Reply

      Hah, she didn’t? Guess she had that necklace on the brain. XD

  17. Avatar
    Olivia Bell (aka Livy) October 28, 2017 at 7:28 pm - Reply

    Wow, what an interesting and suspenseful change in the plot! I’m so excited for part 4!!! 😀

    • Madison
      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:07 pm - Reply

      Hehe YAY!! 😀 😀

  18. Avatar
    agsparklesisters October 29, 2017 at 10:23 am - Reply

    Aaaaahhhhh! Our brains don’t know what to think! They are all over the place! Eeeekkkk! So many plot twists! We can’t take it!

    • Madison
      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:09 pm - Reply

      HEHE YAY! Haha I plot plot twists! Thank you so much for commenting!!

  19. Avatar
    justAG October 29, 2017 at 1:37 pm - Reply

    Ohhhh I know Emma is mean, but I am SOOOOO in love with her outfit! It is really stylish!

    • Madison
      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:11 pm - Reply

      HAHA, thank you!! I love her outfit, too!

  20. Avatar
    Anonymous October 29, 2017 at 1:55 pm - Reply

    YOU GET HIM CONNOR!! Wow, Connor isn’t so bad after all!!!
    Sarah, why?!?!
    *chants “ship Issa and Connor over and over so you’ll get annoyed and finally just do it*

    • Madison
      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:14 pm - Reply

      AWWWW YEAH! Yep, Connor is no longer the bad guy! 😉

      BAD SARAH.

      AHHH YOU SHIP THEM TOO. XDD Lol, I’ll have to think about that. XDD


  21. Avatar
    blackiesunshine October 30, 2017 at 9:11 am - Reply

    So good! Love this series. :D:D:D
    Nice work, Delaney. You make a great bully XD

    • Madison
      Madison November 4, 2017 at 2:16 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much! I’m so glad you like it. 😀

      Delaney: I know. I know. I make the best bully ever.

      • Avatar
        blackiesunshine November 5, 2017 at 11:00 am - Reply

        Kaori: I think I’ve found a kindred spirit.

        (When we do that meet-up in Houston that when-pigs-fly time, you bring Del, and I’ll bring Kaori, k?)

        • Madison
          Madison November 5, 2017 at 7:15 pm - Reply

          Delaney: Can’t believe I’m saying this, but you may be right, Kaori.

          (Yes. That is a must.)

          • Avatar
            blackiesunshine November 6, 2017 at 9:21 am - Reply

            Kaori: So….not very many people know this, but I do parkour. And I think my dad’s a ninja. Like, for real. He’s a private detective but he definitely shows….shinobi tendencies 😉

            • Madison
              Madison November 6, 2017 at 6:09 pm - Reply

              Del: Ooh. No wonder you can do all that awesome stuff. Sounds like something I’d be interested in.

              • Avatar
                blackiesunshine November 6, 2017 at 6:11 pm - Reply

                Kaori: Takes practice but is well worth it. Go look up Ronnie Street Stunts or Tapp Brothers.

                • Madison
                  Madison November 6, 2017 at 6:31 pm - Reply

                  Del: I’ll have to look into that. Sounds EPIC.

You have a voice. I'd love to hear it!

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