Authors: Alexia Purdy
Tags: #Fiction, #Fantasy, #Paranormal
About the Author
This book is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, re-sold, duplicated, hired out, or otherwise circulated without the publisher’s prior written consent in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without similar condition including this condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser.
Text Copyright © 2012 Alexia Purdy
All rights reserved
Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing, LLC.
Algonquin, IL 60102
This is a work of fiction. All characters and events portrayed in this novel are fictitious and are products of the author’s imagination and any resemblance to actual events, or locales or persons, living or dead are entirely coincidental.
Edited by: S.J. Davis
For Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing
Cover by: Para Graphic Designs
The child would grow without knowing him, without knowing her powerful potential. He would not be there to teach her the ways of their magic and life. This was the way it was to be and he could not change it, no matter how much he longed to. For the safety of the child and the love of his life, he had erased her memory of him, forever. He watched the man, watching the happiness spread across his face. He had handpicked him for the woman. He made sure that this man would be a great father and love the woman more than life itself. Even love the child like it was his own.
The faery closed his eyes, feeling the breezes of the cool winds graze his face. He had never wished to leave her like this. He longed to hold her, be the one to swing her around in a flowing dance. His heart ached and his breath seemed to arrest in his throat. He glanced towards her one more time before turning away, and running with the wind towards the forest.
“Rachel had it coming; she was the one who started it!”
Shade looked at her friend’s ruined shirt, streaked with red strawberry smoothie remains. The red substance was sticking to her, and it felt cold; her top was no longer the color yellow it once was. “She’s a dumb idiot anyway. She shouldn’t be calling you those names. I only said she was ‘dumb as a wall and a self-diluted bitch’ in self-defense. I said it for you, besides, it’s only the truth.”
Brisa frowned and gave up rubbing the stain with a washcloth and soap. She pulled the shirt over her head and let it slip to the ground. Glaring at her locker, she realized her only other shirt was her gym T-shirt.
Figures, there is nothing else to wear.
“She shouldn’t have thrown her smoothie at me, the next time I see her she is gonna pay badly.” Brisa sighed and looked at Shade. “You’re not a freak, don’t ever believe anything she says, she’s wrong!”
Shade peered at her friend. Brisa rarely got along with anyone. Not a day went by that she wasn’t in the principal’s office, cleaning chalkboards, wiping down desks or doing some other tedious job she had received as a punishment, for whatever it was that she was in trouble for, instead of hanging out with Shade.
Still, Shade had known Brisa since they were toddlers and would stand by her through anything. She was the only one who knew about Shade’s strange abilities. The only one Shade trusted.
“It’s alright, Brisa. I guess I would think I was a freak too if I didn’t know that I had weird powers, like hearing strange voices in my head that tell me everybody’s secrets or order me to do their every and ‘so annoying’ bidding. It’s my fault for blurting out what they said about her. Who would have known she was cheating on the final, if I hadn’t said anything? I was just telling her so she would wise up. Well, at least you didn’t smash her nose in; you only need one more fight to get that suspension they have threatened you with already. Your mom will hang you!”
Brisa grinned with a slight shudder at the thought of her mother. Brisa’s face was smooth, olive skinned with bright blue eyes. Her dark brown hair flowed lazily in waves to her mid back. She wasn’t gorgeous, but she was not bad looking either. She rarely had makeup on and preferred to wear her hair in a low ponytail instead of letting it flow free around her shoulders. She was as much as a tomboy as a person or girl could get.
“Like I need help in that department.” She pulled her hair out from the collar of her gym shirt and smoothed the wrinkles down. Brisa and her mother rarely got along. She tended to spend more time at Shade’s house than at her own. Shade pulled out her cell phone, it was getting late and their afternoon class was starting in two minutes. She dropped the phone back into her bag, then scooped the bag back up, and tapped her friend’s shoulder. “Gotta go. Do you wanna to be late? Ms. Temor is gonna lock us out! Chop, chop!” Shade said, as she turned and sprinted towards the locker room and shoved the heavy metal doors out of her way.
“Wait up!” Brisa called as she stuffed her ruined shirt into her backpack and stumbled behind Shade, and cleared the doors just before they slammed shut.
hade sighed. She swung her legs down from the ledge she had propped herself on, a stone slab, by the main entrance of the school.
Might as well start walking,
she thought. Her backpack was heavy but not as much as some days when her homework was piled high. Today was a light homework day.
he warm air rippled along Shade’s face. The final bell had rung ages ago, yet here she was, sitting on a rough concrete ledge because her ride was late, again. Brisa rode the Portland, Oregon city bus home and was long gone; and Shade wished she had hopped onto that bus with her. Her mom had forgotten to pick her up again; it was a long walk home. This had been happening too often lately.
Mom has too much on her plate
, Shade thought. Her full time job, two sons and Shade’s sister kept her so busy; and Shade, being the oldest, was on her own.
The streets were quiet, as she walked home. A slight breeze swept up some litter and it floated right past her. She was feeling good, especially compared to how she had felt a couple of weeks ago. She had caught pneumonia, probably from kissing that boy at the skating rink. He was gorgeous, with blonde streaked hair that fell over his eyes in just the right way. He had chatted a lot with her that day.
A real-life true skater boy. Even his name was incredibly skaterish, Chris. ‘Chris’ was flirty and attracted tons of girls hanging at the rink every Saturday. For some unknown reason, he had nuzzled with her one weekend and kissed her ever so softly over and over again. He definitely was someone who had kissed many times before.
Unfortunately, it had come to manifest into the form of a nasty, relentless pneumonia, which he probably was immune to since he didn’t look one bit sickly. It had caused Shade to miss a lot of school, and her grades had taken a beating; and she had been feeling down for this past month. Now, she wasn’t so sure she would be able to get caught up enough to raise some of her D’s to B’s and A’s again. One class was still an F. She squeezed her eyes together, gritted her teeth and tried not to imagine having to endure getting an F for the first time in her life. She would graduate either way but the drop in GPA was not going to go over well with her. Shade sighed and looked ahead; she would have to thank Chris for his little germ sharing smooches the next time she saw his pretty-boy face; that is, if she didn’t smash it in first.
The bright sun was glaring and beating down on her face; and it reflected off the white concrete sidewalk, like a floodlight on a stage. Her little brother, James, had smashed her last pair of sunglasses just two days ago, while playing one of his infinitely, highly imaginative games. She wished that she had replaced them. She passed the main streets of the city and continued walking down the sidewalk. As the roads turned into longer stretches of periodic houses and empty lots, the tall and worn brick buildings faded behind her.
“Only a whole mile or so to go,” Shade mumbled to herself. Both her feet ached a little. She was thankful she had worn tennis shoes today, instead of her usual thin flats because she would have been in a world of pain if she had. Still, she was not used to walking so much since it was just her third day back to school. She started to feel that one of her shoelaces was loose and it began to whip her calf and flop around; she then stopped walking and bent down to retie it firmly. Pausing, Shade looked up, scanning the street and the warehouses that were around her. The cool autumn breeze was whirling around her, causing the fallen leaves to float in the wind; slinging dust into the air. She squeezed her eyes shut and let the ground dirt and dust blow past her.
Standing up, she sucked her breath in. Did she just hear something; was it footsteps? It was like someone scurrying about, or running, but they were trying to be quiet about it. Shade peered around her, surveying the area. Whatever it was, it seemed to have come from the abandoned warehouse that was to her right. She studied the dilapidated, brick structure; it was the only tall building for miles, and it gave her the creeps. She listened hard for anything to betray itself, nothing. The windows were mostly boarded up and weeds littered the ground all around it.
Go inside, now.
Shade paled, she hadn’t heard the voices sound so desperate in quite a while and this was not good.
It was not like her inner voice, or her conscience. It was very different, like someone else whispering into her ears, but she was the only one that could hear them. Shade had never been able to explain this, it would just sound crazy. They were some sort of entities who spoke to her and asked her to do their bidding and she never understood the reasons why. The voices would become clearer and stronger when they wanted her to do something specific. It wasn’t ever anything absolutely insane, like killing someone, and that comforted her, but nevertheless, she cringed at the sound of their voices tingling in her ears. No one knew of this ailment except Brisa.
. No way am I gonna be locked in a nut house for telling the truth, like I’m some paranoid schizophrenic teenager! Oh heck no, I’m not gonna go to any loony house, where they pump me up with drug until I’m comatose.
No one would understand or even look at her like a normal person again if she told anyone about it. She’d become another institutionalized psychotic, hormonal teenager.
said the voices
Hurry to what?
There is nothing here!
Quick, they told her with urgency.
Shade pressed her lips together. She had to; she had to obey. The voices would not leave her alone if she defied them, and she couldn’t handle that. She’d tried not to listen to what they wanted once before and it had dire consequences; three nights of relentless chatter in her head was enough to drive someone to a nuthouse. She could not go through that again.