I. Ivy ----- appeared, on the surface, much the same as any other seventeen year girl.

However, beneath this surface, beneath the layers of illusion, Ivy was far from ordinary. It wasn’t that she had magical powers or anything of that sort, at least, not in the traditional sense. She just had a mysterious affinity for art, painting and drawing in particular. She had a way of making sense of the world through her paints and pencils. She never seemed able to leave her canvases and papers empty, she always filled them in – filling in every empty space from top to bottom and left to right. Her creations were always so filled with life that the images appeared as though they were in danger of spilling off the pages. What was most extraordinary about her creations however was that something unknown always seemed to reveal itself amidst the multitude of images that she could never quite comprehend with the complex rationality of her conscious mind. Though the images that revealed themselves were always of her own creation, she was never able to recall creating them. She was always, without exception, surprised upon viewing her finished work. She drew things that she did not know, secrets that had yet to be discovered, faded memories of her long forgotten past, and dreams that would never dare to be uttered. These images did not merely pertain to herself, but to all of her subjects - people, nature, and the universe itself. Whenever people gazed upon her artwork, they never failed to peer upon them in awe, in fascination and delight. They would ask her what these strange images meant, but she never seemed able to answer. Though she could draw the images, she could not explain them - people had to face their own secrets, their own hidden desires and yearnings, their own demons and fears. Everything was always up to the subject, never the revealers. Apart from this mysterious talent of hers, she appeared, as it has mentioned, the same as any other. She was rather small and fair of skin that was sprinkled with slight freckles, with luminescent emerald eyes – that her Nana Izzy often said could steal the soul of all who were pierced by them, and deep auburn locks of hair. Though she was strikingly beautiful to all those who beheld her, she appeared, apart from this unnatural beauty, to be normal in every sense of the word. The only abnormal thing about her appearance was a small, intricately designed, daisy tattooed on the underside of her wrist. When she’d asked Nana Izzy, her adopted mother who she loved and valued above all others, she replied that she’d had it since she was a baby

and found on the doorstep in front of St. Agnes’ Orphanage for children. What was most unusual about this particular tattoo was not the mere fact that she’d had it since near birth, but was that sometimes, out of the corner of her eye, she could swear she’d see it move, flutter, and breathe. She knew this was ridiculous and, whenever she saw such strange occurrences, pushed the thoughts out of her mind immediately. Because, after all, she constantly reminded herself, tattoos did not breathe. What was more, apart from these witnesses, her tattoo, upon pressing her nose up against it, actually smelled of a live, fresh daisy that had just been plucked from the wilderness itself. This too, she knew, was an impossibility. Even if it were made from some sort of scented ink, it surely could not have lasted this long; it surely would have faded by now. No matter however, by this point, Ivy had grown so accustomed to this strange tattoo of hers that she rarely gave it a moment’s thought. Nevertheless, there were times, however, usually just before sleep, where she imagined it meant something more, something magical – like it belonged to another world. Of course, she would never dream of admitting to such foolish thoughts of child-like fancy. It was a night like any other; Ivy sat at her mahogany desk in front of her bedroom window, overlooking the night sky and fields of flowers in front of her cottage-like house, painting the distant memories of her past. At least she thought they were of her past. Of course, as was usual, she couldn’t explain why she knew this, it was just a feeling she had that seemed to awaken itself from amidst her bones. She painted a woman, at least, what she thought was a woman – it was hard to tell for she was so hidden in the shadows that her figure could scarcely be discerned. From what she could tell, the woman was so beautiful that, upon gazing at her, caused her breathing to momentarily suspend itself. Despite her beauty, however, it was not a happy image. The woman lay in a soft bed encircled by decayed flowers and plants, all of which were nearly completely engulfed by the encroaching shadows. Her face was naive and peaceful. The shadows were murderous. The only redeeming quality of this particular image, the only semblance of hope, presented itself in the top most corner of the page. There, stood a woman with a baby cradled in her arms. She was the only source of light in the entire painting, which only reinforced the blinding quality of her luminescence. Ivy put down her brush to ponder the image before her. What did

it mean? Who were these intoxicatingly beautiful women and who was the baby in the luminescent woman’s arms? She did not know why, but she had a nagging suspicion that the baby was her. This was, of course, ludicrous – the image was so fantastical, so magical, that she could not possibly be a part of it. For, as she was constantly reminded by her once best friend, Elsie, magic was not real. Of course her current best friend, Adam, and her Nana Izzy, always insisted that there was no reason why magic should not be real. Ivy, however, knew that they were wrong. Most likely, they were merely trying to encourage her trust and belief in the power of imagination. But imagination, she knew, was not magic. Frustrated, she tossed her brushes into the cup of water she used for rinsing them and prepared for bed. She was rather tired after all. Upon waking, Ivy slipped her delicate feet into her purple fuzzy slippers, pulled on her velvet robe of lilac over her silky black slip and headed towards the bathroom to shower, brush her teeth, and prepare for the long day of work that lay ahead of her. She walked across her soft violet carpet – for, if you haven’t been able to tell by this point, purple, in every shade, was her absolute favourite color – and made her way towards her bathroom. The only color that could come near competition was green, which was spread, in a vibrant shade of emerald, much like her eyes, across her bedroom and bathroom walls. She could not explain her affinity for these colors, but they seemed to stir something inside of her, to awaken something in the deepest-most pit of her soul. Upon entering the bathroom, she grabbed her purple tooth-brush, rinsed it, and spread a small pea-size drop of tooth paste onto it. She never liked to look at herself as she did this, for, despite her ethereal beauty, she always felt uncomfortable looking at herself for too long. She brushed her teeth until they felt smooth and clean and turned on her bathtub faucet to warm the water for her shower. If she had not turned back to grab her comb on her bathroom counter this particular morning, she may not have noticed the most striking change about her. She dropped the comb she had just picked up onto the floor as she gazed up at her reflection in the mirror. What she saw was startling. In the place of her usual auburn locks, were long black waves, so dark that they seemed to contain the shadows themselves within them. The eyes that stared back at her were not the usual emerald eyes, but were speckled with shades of violet and jade. Her mouth hung open. She could not explain, for the life of her, what

brought on this strange shift in her appearance. While most teenagers might, upon discovering such strangeness, run to their mothers for coalescence, Ivy did not. She was unusually independent for her age – not the kind of independence that adolescents demanded when they reached a certain age, but a true independence that reflected a need to take care of everything herself. She did not want to bother her Nana Izzy with such strangeness; she planned to tell her that her coworker and friend, Liza, had dyed her hair after work. And that, she decided, was that. She chose not to puzzle over the matter anymore than was necessary; for, she could not change what had already occurred. Such thoughts were a mark of her unnatural maturity and acceptance of strangeness in the world she lived in. So, just as she would have any other day, she showered, dressed herself in her in her high-rise greens shorts and black collared shirt – which, along with a green apron and roller skates, were part of her work attire at the ‘60s diner, California Dreamin’, where she worked – and headed, before her Nana Izzy could wake, out the door for work. Ivy walked through the doors of California Dreamin’ with a forced air of confidence that she did not feel. She knew she would be greeted with an abundance of “what did you do to your hair’s?”, and she didn’t much feel like dealing with them. You see, even though she could lie – in fact she could do it rather well if she needed to – she really didn’t like having to do it. Whenever she lied, she felt as though something wasn’t right inside of her – it was a similar feeling to the way she felt whenever the urge to vomit took hold of her. Regardless, despite any aversions to lying she might feel, she knew, in this particular instance, that she must. It wasn’t as if she could just march into work saying, “Oh, yeah, I just woke up with a different hair color,” and be taken seriously. No, she would have to lie. It was really the only way. Sure enough, the first thing she heard upon entering the door was Liza’s, her very best friend at work who she fortunately worked alone with on Saturday’s, shrieks of, “Ivy! What on earth did you do to your hair?” When Ivy looked up at her with a look of annoyance she added, “Not that it doesn’t look amazing! I love it!” And, just like that, Ivy believed her. That was the thing about Liza, every word that was uttered out of her mouth was spoken with such a level of utmost sincerity that she

” Liza screamed. The two girls were both. She began to feel as though everything would be okay.” Ivy murmured as she greeted her in the diner’s entryway. that she often thought of herself in such ways. even. The two seemed to understand each other on some level that no one else had ever been able to. she soon learned that this illusion of his. For a moment. indicating the arrival of a customer. he seemed a kind. a feeling that told them that they could trust the other and know that their intentions were good.couldn’t possibly help but trust her whole-heartedly. in a mock version of what she called her grandmother’s “Jewish voice. an illusion. He was just like every other adolescent young male in Sunnybrook – . But alas. “It’s so snow white. that there really weren’t any words to explain it away. “sensitives” – they saw the world through their emotions and. You look gaaawgeous. prior to meeting Liza. “Thanks Liza.” as their manager liked to put it – Ivy heard the bell on the front door. what Nana Izzy liked to call. if they didn’t care about them in return. for one fleeting moment. Minutes later. respectable boy who she could trust and let down her rigid guard with. “I did it last night. after putting on her skates and apron – for. She suspected that was part of the reason why she liked her so much. Liza seemed to see right into the pit of her soul. Ivy had become wary of whether or not any human being had as soft a heart of hers – not. nor lies spoken.” Ivy laughed in what felt like the first time in a long time. She skated over to the door to greet the customer and escort them to their seat. always treated everyone else in such a way as to ensure that no feelings were hurt. was just that. You see.” she squealed. as her best friend Adam liked point out. It was just a feeling. When first meeting Lucius. she felt a curious sensation grasp hold of her – a sensation that seemed to shout from within that the world as she knew it was about to change. this image of perfection.” “Nonsense. all the waitresses were required to serve their customers’ on roller skates for an extra “touch of ambience. I’m thinking about changing it back though. her ex-boyfriend that she had been foolish enough to date on the mere premise of illusions. because of this. it was only Lucius. They truly cared about everyone they met. as though everything was normal again. To her dismay however. they understood each other on such a deep level.

The Birth of Tragedy. Why they insisted on eating at California Dreamin’ every Saturday. “Ivy dear. Ivy grabbed her book. and a pair of faded dark jeans. They thought it highly amusing. so she shut her book. When she reached him. and prepared to read until the arrival of the next customer. as conquests or games with which they sought to emerge victorious. raw beauty in . large black skater shoes. she couldn’t quite explain. But. laughing so hard he could barely get the words out. most likely. all his acts good intentions. her heart skipped a beat as she reached out her arm to catch the apparent stranger’s attention. dumped him in front of the whole school after he had tried to publically put his hand down her shirt to grab hold of her breasts. she did not know. For. upon revealing her predicament to Liza. What she saw was sheer. And all his pretences.” he said. due to the humiliation she had inflicted on Lucius when she. don’t like me?” He teased. “I’m hurt you won’t serve us yourself. For some reason. by Freidrich Nietzsche which she was currently reading. he turned around. a tall slender frame that nevertheless showed evidence of definition. she knew Liza would understand and take up the task good-naturedly. his back was facing away from her. that was all he cared about. She would not be serving them. hopped up from the stool she had been seated on. and skated over to greet the next customer. and a tight black T-Shirt. Her breath caught in her throat. Sure enough. Irritated. For that was how the males of Sunnybrook saw women. as it had become painfully obvious after just a week of dating. She’d have to think up a way to pay her back for her constant kindness. It was. before she could reach him. Moments later she heard the loud bing of the door. quite suddenly.consumed by the incessant drive for sex. What’s the matter.” she heard Lucius call out. Liza immediately hopped up off her counter stool and skated over to Lucius’s table to take their no doubt complicated orders. were nothing but illusory lies held onto in order to acquire a sexual conquest. They always liked to make things difficult for them. She could just see a wild bush of shaggy ink black hair. “Hey baby. as she grabbed three menus for him and his friends and lead them towards the furthermost table.

” she stuttered after catching her breath.” She was trying. sideways grin that revealed his perfect white teeth. Which. She set down his menu and beckoned for him to be seated. with him trailing behind her. amidst all this. she reminded herself. “I’ll just be a minute. she heard a faint. she had clearly been reading too many fantasy books. which was so small you could walk to the other side of town and back. She grabbed a menu and skated over to the table where he would be seated. velvety voice that grabbed hold of her heart and shook it out of balance. although she’d experienced this ill-at-ease when first working at California Dreamin’. she knew not simply because of the strange manner in which he spoke. A beautiful boy. had jet black eyes to match his scruffy hair and paper white skin. She suddenly felt strange on her roller-skates. of course it wasn’t her soul his eyes were reflecting.” she managed. Why should this stranger make her so uncomfortable? He was just a boy after all. What was she saying. Which was odd because. “Right this way. “Can I.” he murmured. If you would be so obliged? Who on earth talked like that these days? He obviously wasn’t from around here. And when he touched her it was if time stood still. “Sure.its essence. she knew every one of its inhabitants. rather fruitlessly to redeem some semblance of the professionalism she had allowed to momentarily slip. “get you a table?” He grinned at her. beautiful rhythmic melody inside the . she had never once encountered a soul who could rival her in the paleness department. She felt electric currents pulsate through her body. She gazed into his beautiful black eyes and saw her soul reflected back in them. after another moment’s hesitation. froze somehow. Prior to today. “why don’t you glance over the menu and I’ll be right with you.” she informed him. grabbing hold of her hand before she could skate off. maybe a little bit older. “If you would be so obliged. a slant.” he said in a smooth. but because in a town the size of Sunnybrook. she had been working there for so long by now that she had more than gotten used to it. And. The boy. who looked to be about her age.

” she replied. startled back to reality. “It’ll be up in just a minute. but a smile so big that it caused her heart to skip a beat. “Take one of these.” she managed. That was another thing she liked about Liza. but he looked just as taken aback as she felt. I take them all the time.” Ivy managed. “He’s just a boy. she always knew when to immediately hate someone who’d wronged one of her friends. “They’re Oxycottons. “I’ll just have a chocolate shake if it’s not too much trouble.” she heard Liza bellow from a nearby stall. You can’t let yourself get swept away by looks alone. just like any other.” sang Liza as she washed her hands. handing her a bottle of pills. as she exited the bathroom stall.” “Here.” “What’s that. work wonders. “What can I get for you?” she asked. okay get a hold of yourself. “Don’t mention it. always putting her friends above anyone else.” she managed.pit of her own head. He smirked up at her.” And then he smiled again. “Okay. mirroring eyes of his. “Gotta get back to ass boy. Ivy gathered up her courage and headed out the bathroom door to wait on this mysterious stranger.” he replied. “Not at all. popping one of the small white pills into her mouth and swallowing. “I’m just feeling a little off color is all.” “Thank you.” she said. as she reached his table. She was just sweet like that. She looked up at him to see if he was the source of this. She had gotten lost in those deep. after what felt like an eternity. “Oh nothing. placing his hand on her wrist again before .” she muttered to herself as she entered the diner’s bathroom. see you out there.” “Thanks.” Liza continued as she swung the bathroom door shut behind her. this time not just a smirk. upon finally regaining control of her bodily functions.” Liza said. “I’ll be right back.

Bing. She felt the easing of her nerves as the oxygen made its way from her lungs into her brain. So long as you allowed oxygen to travel freely throughout your body. It was a feeling that spoke to her through her bones. over to the customer’s table. it was that nothing could ever take control of your body so long as you remembered to breathe properly. She grabbed the chocolate shake from the Lazy Susan between the kitchen and the counter where she stood. a strange fear emitting from within herself that seemed to scream warnings of danger – telling her to run. it nevertheless eased the speed at which her thoughts flew out at her. trying to break whatever spell she was under. What was going on these days? First. She skated over to the counter and pinned the strange customer’s order above the kitchen entrance. Whatever refief this allowed her. once whatever strange connection between the two of them had broken. Flow. however. truth be told. she could nevertheless not quell the longing she felt to run back to him and basque in his presence. to get far away from him. she heard the bell from the kitchen. She took several deep breaths. She remembered the words of her psychiatrist. that it had something to do with her past. And something. Breathe. What was it she’d always told her? She screwed her brain up trying to remember. And. . And this time. it did work to some extent. perhaps too eagerly. “I’ll be right back. the strange image she had created from her past.she could leave. Breathe. there was the strange change in the coloring of her hair and eyes that she had woken up with this morning.” she managed. the lights overhead flickered and sparks fell from the ceiling all around her. She picked it up and skated. though she did not know how. Oh yes. she told herself repeatedly. Ivy slipped her hand away from beneath Ian’s grasp. when he touched her. though she tried to pretend as if this mysterious stranger meant nothing to her. She was just imagining things. this… For. And now. Surely it was coincidence. Along with this urge to be near him. whom her Nana Izzy had forced her to see in order to “deal” with the trials of adoption and the loss of her blood family. Then. easing her nerves back to some semblance of a normalacy. something more. indicating the customer’s order being ready. for she knew. she felt something else.

melodic voice.” continued the boy. “she’s a tease. to yell at Lucius to leave them alone if he had finished. But he was already back at his table and. Lucius merely grinned back at him. “I’d be careful if I were you. nothing more than a little tease.”he bellowed in his smooth. noticing the stunned . And then. he spat in her face. he murmured.” to the ground and him and his cronies backed out of the diner’s door. to her utter disbelief. The two merely looked into each other’s eyes for a long time until she heard Lucius’s laughter from behind her. more money than she had ever seen. Oh no. “My pleasure.” he said in a ruthless. grasping at his collar and holding him up in the air. trying to laugh off the whole situation.” she chimed. laughing.” he continued. to her astonishment. “Thanks. mocking tone.“Here you go. “Ivy here likes to lure men into her grasp and then drop them the moment they’re hooked. Her breathing. was finishing the milkshake that she couldn’t fathom how he had had time to drink.” she stuttered into the direction where the boy had just been. Then he thrust a large wad of bills into her hand. Perhaps Lucius sensed danger in the boy’s tone for the next thing she knew.” Ivy could feel the uneven beats of her heart growing faster.” This last bit was dripping with a sarcasm so heavy that it was really much meaner than anything he had said before. before leaving. “I said apoligize. “For your troubles. the strange customer was right in front of Lucius’s cocky face. “sorry.” he remarked. unsteadied itself. In an instant. “Apologize. She’d never put out. “Be careful boy. Lucius’s mouth was twisted into a malicious grin. in the direction of the customer’s table. which she had worked so hard to control.” he ordered in a voice so commanding that it didn’t sound right coming out of a boy his age’s mouth. She turned around. she’s far to good for that. with a false note of enthusiasm and calm that she did not feel.

“He left me a massive tip!” And she reached her hand into her apron pocket only to pull out a large pile of leaves and stones that seemed to have replaced the wad of bills the boy had given her. But these were not normal circumstances. She clearly found Lucius’s weakness in the presence of this strange customer highly amusing. “Oh. She had always been that way. “What’s for dinner?” Ivy asked her Nana Izzy as she walked through the kitchen door.” “I’ve never seen Lucius back down to anyone in all my life.look on her face. And then.” continued Liza. setting down her heavy bag of books that she always carried everywhere with her. “Stir-fried tofu and vegetables. shoved the wad of bills into her apron pocket as she stared at the boy now exiting. “What did you do to your hair?” She finally managed after several moments silence. Ivy. already tired of having to answer such questions.” Ivy began. she would have shared the same amusement in Lucius’s fear. Clang. And Ivy’s mouth fell open… II. he left the way he had entered. turning around from the kitchen sink to face Ivy. And furthermore. in utter bewilderment. hopelessly independent and determined to manage everything herself. “Look at this.” she stammered. “What was that about?” She heard Liza asking from behind. “I. she nevertheless liked to fight her own battles herself. in an amuzing tone. just like that.. under normal circumstances. Like it?” . “I don’t know.” she finally said. trying to force her mind back to happier thoughts. “Liza dyed it after work. Though she no doubt felt gratitude towards the strange boy.” she replied. She had dropped the pan she had been washing as she took in Ivy’s changed appearance. Ivy could not blame her for. she felt just as much fear herself as she did gratitude.

as she reached a hand up to her own flaming red hair. at smoothing out the rough edges and re-establishing a semblance of normalacy. that she always did before nightfall. “I don’t know. she could not quite explain away the flecks of violet and jade that had materialized in her eyes overnight. it was so faint she could scarcely hear it. soothed her nerves. A soft. and stretched out her thin limbs to prepare for. They’re beautiful. what she hoped. Ivy went to bed early that night without even bothering to begin her ritual nightly painting.” Ivy replied in relief. But tonight. though she could explain away her hair by pigments and dyes. Suddenly she could not understand why she had feared Izzy’s reaction. At first. Izzy. And Ivy loved her for it. of course.“Well you know how partial I am to red.” she repeated. I’m thinking about changing it back. The velvet voice contained such an element of sadness within it that. she always responded to change unnervingly well in the face of everything. who was always so good at easing her worries. chasing . She ran into the woods she presently found herself in. made her yearn to seek it out – to somehow soothe its pain. she was too exhausted even for that.” Izzy began after several moments. nothing to be worried about. “Yeah.” “Well. “what on earth happened to your eyes?” This was the question Ivy was dreading.” began Izzy. in all its beauty. velvety voice that lulled her deep into submission. would be a long peaceful night of slumber. crawled into bed. That night.” stammered Ivy. But what on earth…” continued Izzy as she got a closer look at Ivy’s altered appearance. “Thanks. “They were just like that when I woke up. “But if you like it.” “Well you know you always look beautiful no matter what. She pulled on her purple paisly pajamas. then I like it.” she admitted. How very wrong she was. It came from somewhere in the distance. For.” “Thanks Nana. “I just thought… it was time for a change. I just thought. Painting always calmed her somehow. smooth. Ivy heard a voice in her dreams.” That was Izzy’s way. “I guess its just one of those things that was bound to happen with puberty.

The more she ran. just as it started to feel more tangible. This was her favorite outfit – it comforted her somehow when days were hard. This time it was loud. her surroundings shifted from the darkness of the woods to the heavenly light of the sky. truly felt. but all she could remember was a voice. was it something more? For some unknown reason that she couldn’t even voice out loud in the privacy of her own bedroom she felt. To her surprise. She’d never known anything so absolutely in her entire life. desperate to find its owner. She squeezed her eyelids shut. praying for a response. she could feel her whole body quivering from head to toe. She called to it. on the contrary. washed her face. velvet voice called back to her. She brushed her teeth. singing her name. and combed her long. . however. it dissipated into nothingness. But.the voice. for the life of her. an eerily familiar. She couldn’t remember. but actual events that she partook in. the farther it seemed to get. She dressed herself in a sheer black shirt. What did it mean? Was it mere coincidence? Was it simply her unconscious mind stringing together images of the day before? Or. what she’d been dreaming about. searching for something too beautiful to present itself. not appearing to be holding on to anything for support. trying desperately to cling onto to the fading images. exhausting her more every minute. She ran until the muscles in her limbs burned. Ivy awoke in a sudden fright. All she knew was that it was important. The velvety voice did not reply for a long time. She found herself floating in mid-air. She hadn’t gotten that long. Finally. she had slept so poorly that she felt as if her dreams were not mere dreams. She ran until it seemed her lungs would explode. She ran into the darkness. beautiful voice – the voice of the boy she’d met that day in the diner. peaceful sleep she had yearned for. and tight black leggings and black. the velvety voice enveloped her in its embrace. She called out to no one. it called out to her. violet mini skirt. the beautiful. now black hair out so as to smooth out all the tangles. Before she could regain control of herself. The next morning. Her pajamas were soaked through with a cold sweat that pervaded her entire body. fuzzy boots. Ivy woke in a state of complete exhaustion. demanding its presence. She ran until she grew so weak that she quite literally collapsed. it was something more – more than mere coincidence.

She passed Elsie. and then.” Then.” Ivy walked into Buffalo High School that morning not expecting anything unusual to transpire. not much in the mood for her Nana’s questioning. “you’re looking a bit off color. allowing her to at as she chose. she kissed the top of Ivy’s head and said. rising and rinsing her mug of coffee. “I can see that. to quote Mean Girls. not pushing – just putting the offering out there. And Elsie. and her fellow minions to Stacey Anne’s posse. she added. “All right. her once best friend who had sold her soul to the popular two years ago. noticing Ivy’s outfit upon her entrance into the kitchen.” she replied. not prying. “Thanks. She hated the lot of them for their “higher than thou” superiority complex.” Ivy managed. “I’ll be in my bedroom should you need me. she was alarmingly level-headed in the presence of hardship. nothing a long day won’t wash out. and Adam because he was.” retorted Izzy.” “I know. she always knew when not to pry. That was what they had done to Elsie two years ago.” And she truly felt it.” Nana Izzy said. “Just had bad dreams. You know I’m always here. Ivy. “I had a rough night. “almost . she never let strange occurences get the better of her.” “That’s an understatement. Ivy glared back.” Ivy replied. They thought they were such royalty that they could actually dictate who was an acceptable friend to have. feeling as though she might be acting too distant to not raise further suspicion.” said her Nana. All of them gave her glaring looks as she passed by. I hope you’ll be feeling better soon. That was another thing Ivy loved about her Nany Izzy.” muttered Ivy as she poured herself a bowl of cereal and seated herself at the kitchen table. “have a nice first day of school my dear. She always left her to her own devices. through a large mouthful of cereal.“Someone’s anticipating a hard day ahead of her. “Not really. complied with little to no hesitation when they told her she would have to ditch Ivy and her now best friend Adam. “Want to talk about it?” Asked her Nana. who was so desperate to become one of them. because she was too beautiful to be tolerated – and they were all too jealous to want to give her the time of day.

that enhanced what he liked to call his “perfect arse. It had become a kind of ritual of sorts.” he sang. She walked down the halls until she reached the school cafeteria. her and Adam were far better off without their approval. Sure enough. a lemon poppyseed muffin. “Oh is that all?” She teased. “Close enough. effervescent skin.” She ran up to him from behind. every morning before the first bell rang.” she managed. “Only the most gorgeos guy ever to walk the earth has enrolled here and is in OUR grade. and god-like hair. “Sounds intriguing. in his hopelessly idealistic voice. describing his beautiful lashes. Not that she wasn’t interested in boys. “Oh my goddesses Ivy you should see him. finally allowing the enthusiasm that had clearly been building up in him all morning to pour out. in a would-be-casual tone. She nevertheless enjoyed the gossip-like banter the two partook in.” she asked as she took a sip of the coffee he had in front of him.” No matter. the two would. if they were feeling up to it. He was wearing his favorite green hoodie and tight black jeans.too gay to function. where she knew Adam would be waiting for her. Cher was his all time idol. share a cup of coffee and. “Guess who?”She murmured into his ear. she told herself as she passed their ruthless clique. with an air of forced nonchalence. It . he adored every thing about her right down to her odd eccentricities. slipping her hands over his eyes. when she reached the cafeteria she spotted Adam’s mop of shaggy blonde hair almost immediately.” he said. she was – just not in an obssessive way like Adam was. She never quite shared his obsession with gazing at male beauty. She could always count on Adam to know the most intriguing information in the school. “So what’s today’s gossip. Umm “Cher?” he squeeled. forcing a little bit of enthusiasm to pour through her voice. And he was.” she said as she slunk herself down in the seat next to him.

she was. “Weird he said.made her feel normal somehow.” “They’re not contacts. It wasn’t that she wasn’t a good student. As Ivy had arrived several minutes before the first bell. greatful for his choosing to not make a big deal about the change. shoving off any weirdness and nudging him in the ribs. was a relief. Ivy walked to English class.”she said. in an offhand sort of way. hoping he would continue with this casual indifference. greeted her teacher.” Ivy laughed at this. the boy from her dream. when she managed to accept this strange reappearance of the black haired boy. “Woah. pointing in the direction of the cafeteria’s entryway. Rogers.” she murmured. Ivy sucked in her breath. “By the way. “her loss. she’d just grown up seeing more bad in the student body than good. walking through the doorway was the door from the diner. She walked through the doorway. only letting it out when she managed to regain her composure. What was Elsie’s problem? How could she so easily pretend that the two hadn’t been in diapers together? She tried to repeat the wisdom.” he added in.” his eyes growing a little wider. Mr.” “Shutup. “Always knew you were special Ivy. she merely liked sitting in the back – away from all the stares of the other students. Adam shoved her so hard she nearly fell off her chair. great contacts too. And there. “There he is. given the strange occurences that had been happening to her as of late.” he finally said. alone. which. He looked at her then. Then. Somehow. She couldn’t explain her antisocial tendencies. and took the seat in the backmost corner. “Dig the hair.” that Adam always voiced when she was upset about Elsie’s ease at becoming turn-coat. it didn’t always work. who she had always liked. she did. really looked at her. trying not to absorb the harsh stares of Elsie and Stacey Anne. or didn’t care. before any more weirdness could emerge. indicating . striding in such a way so as to make his hair flow with a breeze in his wake.

” Ivy just stared up at him in disbelief. before sleep took hold of her she was suddenly shaken awake. She looked up and saw. why. pulled the hood up over her head. “I’m Ian. more importantly why was in her in dream and why. reached out his hand and said. “So. black haired boy sliding into the seat next to her.” “He’s a bit of a nomad. It was just her luck that. Her mind began to wander. easing towards the brink of unconsciousness. “it was terribly rude of me. “Your name is?” He prompted. would be him. She didn’t want him to get the wrong impression of the people of Sunnybrooke. chuckling everso-slightly. They weren’t all bad.” “It’s a pleasure to meet you Ivy. She slipped on her black hoodie. Cole. . the ashen faced. and rested her head on her folded across her desk.” he added as an afterthought. not taking his hand. “Ivy.the commencement of the school day. Who was this boy? And.” she finally managed after quite some time. almost as though this pleasure was just as much a surprise to him as it was to her.” he whispered. at Ivy’s prolonged silence. did the mother he had given to her turn to bits of leaves and stones? “I guess I can understand you reluctance. “Ivy. the first time any student had chosen to sit next to her in she couldn’t remember how long. she allowed the wave of exhaustion she had been feeling all morning wash over her.” he said. “What brings you to this lovely town?” “My grandfather. Great.” she began. allowing his outstreched hand to fall to his side. But. “What about your parents?” She asked. tired of me and sent me here to live with my uncle. I never got the chance to formally introduce myself to you the other day. He smiled at her tentatively. to her great irritation and mounting anxiety. feeling she ought to at least attempt at polite conversation.” he continued. I regretted it of course. who has recently moved here out of sheer restlessness. whom I had been living with. rather rudely she feared.

feeling guilty. both . after a very prolonged silence he said. Partly because she was not used to such feelings and partly because. endless amounts of trashy magazines and gossip about all the phonies at school. Rogers.” She had. Finally. she shared the truth that she rarely spoke of to anyone.” “I’m sorry to hear it. the short. the stronger the pull to get closer felt. “Oh.” “How did you know I had english with him?” She asked.” he said.” Which was odd. was sheer foolishness and thus. the bell rang and Mr.” she began. given his usual proneness to burst out in fits of laughter. growing more irritated by the second. “I hadn’t really noticed. That afternoon. there was a resounding fear. And then. “So how bout that new kid? Is he a god or what?” “I. remained startlingly silent during their investigation of this month’s “100 ways to pleasure your man. in a strikingly matter-of-fact tone. A voice inside her head seemed to warn her of some emmanent danger about him. noticing the blush in her cheeks. noticing Ivy’s foul mood. As soon as the bell rang. before the conversation could progress any further. “I heard you had English with him. no doubt tactfully slipped in. “I’m sorry. after a pause. amidst this strange desire for him. It frightened her. Adam.” he said. Ivy went to the local bookstore with Adam to peruse. Ivy bolted from her seat and hurried out the door before Ian had a chance to say anything more to her.” he chortled. as was their custom on the first of every month.” And then. tried to ignore them as much as possible.” And then. brown-haired. Perhaps this was due to the magnetic pull she felt between her and Ian.“Both dead. truly looking sorry.” “Give it up. “Dish. “both my parents are dead too. She knew this. as well as the magnetic pull she felt.” she managed. to her astonishment. The further she tried to situate herself from him. beared and slightly chubby English teacher chimed in. handing out syllabi and introducing the aims of the class. he added. “I never told you that. The class seemed to endure for an eternity.

so you two have been talking?” She asked. but magical? Really? Let’s not get carried away here.” “What. “Yeah we had music together. “He uh. She didn’t know why this irritated her so much.” “You’ll just have to hear it yourself if you don’t believe me.” he replied. hesitantly.” At this. an air of defiance in his voice.” Adam began. “Whatever.” . “Yeah. get a grip on yourself would you? I mean I know you’ve had your crushes before.” Ivy stammered. umm.” Adam replied. I told him you kicked its ass.”she said. “What did he ask?” “He just said you seemed interesting is all and wanted to know more about you.” he retorted.” “Oh.because she wanted to and because she felt it was right in her bones. his voice casual and unaffected. neglected to mention any interaction between Ian and her to anyone. and then added. makes you forget all your worries and troubles so that you and his music is the only thing in the world. “What were you two doing talking about me anyhow?” “He just asked me about you is all. “Just that you worked a lot and really dug art. her breath coming up short. “Oh Adam. It was magical. “Oh. Ivy finally laughed. or if they did. “he was asking about me?” What was he doing asking about her? And why was he so interested? No one took any interest in Ivy.” he paused for a second in thought. with mounting enthusiasm. Stacey Anne would soon put an end to it.” “And you told him what?” Ivy probed. still laughing. it wasn’t as though she had any claim over either of them. told me. “it sort of carries you away with it. “Oh Ivy you should hear him! He’s simply amazing! He can play practically every intstrument beautiful and the music well. really.

“why didn’t you tell me you two had already met.” asked Ivy. She guessed it just had to do with him being new was all. “I told him about your strange prophetic drawings and he seemed to know something about it.” he continued. But I think he considers California his home. “Really.” she said. Maybe that’s why he weant to California Dreamin’ the other day. “why did you tell him that?” “Because you do. “Yeah.” Adam insisted.“And why.” “Thanks Adam. hoping he’d soon drop the subject. it seems he travelled a lot with his grandfather.” trying not to feel too irritated at his kind words. “He seemed really interested in your art. looking hurt. I just have a headache.” “I know Ivy.” “I just can’t get over how beautiful he is. “Yeah.” he continued.” Adam pressed. Said that kind of thing was more common from where he’s from. clinging to this excuse as a . “Must have slipped my mind I guess. Am I boring you with my Ian talk?” He asked.” he added. defensively. “Everyone knows you’re the baddest chick around when it comes to art. “You know I tell you everything important.” And then she added. That reminds me. “You seem bored. I guess I hadn’t really noticed much. more to soothe Adam’s feelings than anything else. growing more and more curious. Why should he be interested in anything like that? While it is true that people used to be very interested in her strange drawings.” he continued. I know. now more curious than ever.” “How did you know about that?” “He told me that’s where you two met the other day.” she pressed. “No. all the hype surrounded them had pretty much died out. I thought we shared everything. “Oh all around.” Said Ivy.” “Which is?” Ivy asked.

Faerie was the capital of the Faery Realm and ultimately had command over everything that went on within it. fell instantly in love with her and decided he would not be content lest he could have her. in harmonious cooperation – Faerie never needed to exist. . came Damien. He. Damien asked Etienne what it would take to become her king. He quite emphatically agreed. the indivual and the community. He found it irritating beyond belief that the only entryway between the Faery Realm and the mortal one was through and in Faerie. chaos and order. a world that necessitated the existence of Faerie. order. Ian’s lovely grandfather. He was prophecized to be the Faeries’ King.” “Ok . Certain faeries had affinities towards creation. however. Etienne pondered for a near fortnight and returned with the decision that he could be her King under the condition that they neither married nor became lovers. however. the Fey never needed the existence of Faerie – that court which oversees all things and ensures the maintenance of balance and order in the world. The Fey used to live together. Etienne. There was one Queen. It was the balanced. and all was balanced.” he said.” said Ivy as she swung her bag over her shoulder and headed out of the bookstore. unchanging land – it emphasized order. and did not love Damien. life and death. the very heart of the Faery Realm and the center point for all of its magic. Sorry Adam. and destruction. confident that one day her love would be returned to him. In the past. the perfect match for Etienne as rulers of the Otherworld. Etienne. The Queen. they lived together harmoniously. logic.reason to leave. taken aback. towards her car. Then. and balance above all else. They carried out their duties harmoniously. sobriety and intoxication. his whole of existence had been spent in this new world. who oversaw all things and all was peaceful. Ian: Ian walked through the border that lead from Faerie to the Mortal Realm. Determined. He had never known the world that way. “Call me later okay?” “Sure. upon meeting the beautiful Etienne. birth and re-birth. had a heart for another. I’m just not feeling so great. “I think I’m gonna bail. For all of nature is a process of creation and destruction. who had the power to make all in her presence feel like Kings and Queens themselves.

she soon died of a broken heart and left her court to her daughter. to the King. What Damien did not know was that Etienne was pregnant with the solitary fey’s child. desperate for his grandfather’s approval. and sexual passion. with Etienne. and the Apollonian. whom they cherished above all others. Ian went – to find. Etienne however was weak. They now new where she was taken. grew to be the court of intoxication. but all had been fruitless. lest she replace her mother in her throne. then to interact and seduce. All had been going well until the discovery of Roslyn’s daughter. Seventeen years had past and all was going well. Half felt their loyalty to the Queen. All of his court’s magic had been employed to find her. She gave birth to a beautiful girl. Damien’s court. until now. He passed through the waterfall that divided the two realms and ventured out into the mortal world. devasted by unrequited love and the death of his beloved. and capture the girl. he could not find her until now. whom she named Roslyn. the other. Damien. where Damien would no doubt destroy her. Damien never knew she had birthed a child and. Damien walked up to the small cottage where he knew the mortal girl to live. chaos. The cottage was small and encircled by a rather large field of . Seeing no other choice. into the mortal realm. Hence arose Faerie. where she was no longer fit to rule. upon discovering this. first to observe. The courts became so divided that they threatened to overtake each other. When she discovered Damien’s hand in the murder of her love. with Damien. seduce. the birth and creation of all things. destruction. However. And it was here. music and dance. remained defiant. Damien had given Ian his orders to do so and Ian. The Dionysian. Thus arose the creation of the two courts – the Dionysian. The Apollonian court. captured the new Queen and seduced her into a state of permanent slumber. set out to find the girl to destroy her. Etienne lived in misery for what felt an eternity. that court which oversees all things and demands order and balance between the other two courts. art and poetry. she grew furious and all of Faery grew divided. and for this reason. and then to bring back with him to his land. Damien murdered him in the hopes that someday Etienne could learn to love him instead. The Dionysian court was relishing in their new power. became the court of beatiful images and creativity. Etienne’s.however. He set out now to find her. agreed to the task in earnest. Her love for the poor solitary fey that so held her heart remained strong and unbreaking. The courts were named after their gods Dionysus and Apollo.

On it. This mortal girl. It was odd. It was fitting that the next air to the Apollonian court should have a propensity towards the arts. He walked around her room. taking in its surroundings. it was in her blood after all. that she should be involved in anything to do with the fey. he should not find it so easing. Amidst this abundance of purple was a myriad of different drawings and paintings she had. It was as they had suspected – daisies. Not. he thought to himself. He walked over to the desk in the furthermost left corner of the room. however. Purple was everywhere – her lamp shade. after all. was no longer a child. She had passed through the intagible barrier between childhood and adolescence. so fair that he. that she’d be able to see him if she awoke. he chortled as he passed through the white picket fence. He could see that she quite liked to draw and paint and. She was sleeping. He shunned at this inclination of his towards order. her long auburn locks spread out across her pillow. Maybe she belonged with him. Daisies were the culprit. was different. It was no surprise that this mortal girl should have the gift of creating beauty. throught the wooden walls. how angelic and innocent. He had always felt out of place in his court. a drawing – a beautifully intoxicating drawing. Daisies were responsible for his court’s inability to find her. the soft carpet. It had become common knowledge among all who knew of the faery folk that daisies would protect a child from capture by the fey. like an outsider somehow. Ian. She looked soft and peaceful. done herself. As Ian gazed down at the image he saw a beautiful woman resting in slumber. No matter. could see blue veins shining through her skin. He was. that her life should have to end. the plastic god after all – the god of beauty and image. It was merely better this way. up the stairs – where he could smell the mortal girl’s living quarters – and through he bedroom door. Her skin was fair. a member of the Dionysian court and should thus always opt for chaos. etc. enveloped . more orderly. Ian grinned to himself. that wouldn’t work anymore. and a strange beacon of light which took the shape of a woman in the top-right corner.daisies. in his court. How delicate she looked lying there. no doubt. It was a pity. however. the color purple. after all. He gazed down at the image and nearly let out a gasp of shock. after all. so pleasant – he was. were scatters of paints and pencils and. Everything else was chaos. the small lit lanterns around the borders of the walls. with his faery sight. nearly risking waking the girl.

It must mean something else. having to walk out them rather than through him due to his mortal glamor. he would have to teach her. he thought as he looked upon the sleeping girl. Perhaps she really was more fey than mortal. What was he saying. deciding to visit her at her work place the day. eyes that held within them the sheer essence of nature. perhaps it would soon become necessary for her to learn the power of how to weave a glamour. it read. Maybe she had prophetic skill as well as artistic impulses. as he shook his head fervently. He had not expected the mortal. He felt strange and unnerved. He suspected those were. he was now a solid mass. If he was to be acting a mortal. he said to himself as he made his way over to the home his uncle Cole. He thought back to the change in her eye and hair color and attributed these changes to her faery blood. He was more frazzled than he would like to admit. was currently reside – all on the pretense of their mortality. his job was to seduce and capture her. who had really been a parent to him his whole life. He laughed out loud at the sheer foolishness . and left the way he had entered. he was rather disconcerted by the whole exchange. He wondered at what it could mean. She was already beginning to shape-shift. Did she know? Could she know that her mother was in a state of permanent slumber over in his court? It wasn’t possible. not teach her the ways of faery – not become a friend to her. “Work Schedule for California Dreamin’” He pocketed the piece of paper. Clearly she had a lot to learn. He had not expected to feel some strange connection upon meeting her and gazing into her beautiful emerald eyes that were speckled with jade and violet. which gave him both the appearance and physical composition of a mortal – rather than being fluid energy. so as to disguise such changes from the human world. a product of her faery blood – no mortal could have eyes such as those. girl to have had such an effect on him. He had expected to be in control of the situation. She should be waking soon. Ian walked out the doors of California Dreamin’. he decided as he shook himself out. not felt as though she had some sort of power over him. She looked human enough however. he would have to play the part well – leave no open edges. No matter. No. no doubt. Ian was awoken from his thoughts as he heard the girl moving in her sleep. Maybe she was more faery than human. He looked down at a crinkled paper that lay on the corner of her desk.in darkness. or near mortal. he thought.

matter-offactly – it was an assumption. do what he had been ordered of him to do. truly felt. Ian strode through the hallways of Ivy’s cottage and towards to door leading to the pantry. He grabbed a rather squishy green comforter and a clumpy old pillow and headed back to Ivy’s room. He nuzzled his face into his pillow. What he must do. she needs to sleep the night off. “Did you converse with her?” “A bit. He allowed his mind to wander towards the idea of protecting Ivy.of such a thought. where he set up his temporary bed at the base of Ivy’s. “I’ll have her hooked by tomorrow morning. where she was now sleeping. to soothe his own doubts as much as Cole’s.” he stated. and troubles . and then. it did. concerns.” INSERT SCENE HERE OF IAN THINKING ABOUT THE EFFICIENCY OF THE PLAN. if he felt for her this way. he thought. intentions. not a question. he added. nestling himself into it like a caterpillar in a cocoon. of being with her. of caring for her. unspeakable thoughts.he thought about her at all hours of the day. “Indeed Cole. Good.” Ian replied. where Ivy had assured him he’d find spare blankets and pillows. He walked through the door to the old victorian house in which he and Cole had taken up residence.” he replied. “I trust everything went according to plan. lying on his side. How was he too. What would such a ludicrous outburst mean for him? Did it really come down to a choice between Ivy and his court? On the one hand. he was starting to love Ivy . He situated himself between the green comforter. His heart ached out to her and yearned to protect her from pain. her well-being. he felt. and allowed his mind to wander towards forbidden. about her thoughts. waiting for his news. Cole was at the kitchen table.to want nothing more than to be the one person who could indubitably be there for her and be the source of .

how could he allow Ivy to stop consciously living . shifting the tapestry of the future in ways he could not know. Maybe he would offer the same kindness towards Ivy. he would have to. At least in sleep. he had decided now.to stop being an active part of the world. After tonight. he should have revealed more hidden truths to her. the daughter of his only love. sometimes despised. he would never be able to think of her as an object. unable to calm his mind enough for sleep.she was at peace. nothing could touch her . He would have to be there for her. not his court. maybe he wouldn’t be able to destroy her after all. He had chosen. he was starting to question whether this longing was grounded. She .her happiness. No. to separate himself from her and the task that needed to be done. He had decided. in the privacy of his own thoughts. He needed her.his grandfather. whether he actually wanted the approval of a man who he. whatever the cost. but. now black. he thought about what he had told Ivy and the reasons behind his telling her. What would it mean for him if he turned his back on him and his court? He would undoubtedly never acquire the approval from his grandfather that he had so longed for. he had his court to think about . The world needed her. waves of hair falling over the sides of her bed. On the other. into a state of endless sleep rather than destroy her. For his propensity towards darkness and terror. Perhaps this was why his grandfather had chosen to put Roslyn. it was as if all the horror of the world couldn’t touch her there. protect Ivy now. What was he thinking. if he was approaching it from his tie to Ivy. he should not have told her anything. Ivy shoved her new schedule into her messenger bag and headed down to the basement. He glanced up at Ivy. She was so beautiful when she slept. where the drama room was located. he wondered. To allow her presence to touch him too much. for he had taken to walking since living in the mortal realm. Ian shuddered at these thoughts. If he was approaching the matter from his faery side and the side of his court. He was starting to loathe the old man for his inclination towards maliciousness and cruelty. her long. He allowed himself to become too involved. As Ian walked home from school. He should have revealed everything. To allow her safety and happiness to be held above his own and his courts.

I won't happen again – I promise. if she was being honest with herself. Jay. slightly chubby drama teacher with short sandy hasher. “I'm dividing you all up into . she wasn't exactly true. Now that she thought about it. Maybe there wasn't really much of a difference.” “All right. She may talk a lot of smack about the people at school. She played the part of the strong girl who never lets anything touch her. she would be if she didn’t care about fitting it.” Jay began. Maybe she was who she pretended to be. But next time. they only just put me in this class and I was held up in the main office.” “Oh but Ivy. always playing a part. in a loud. was already re-enacting various different characters in front of the class. She walked down the stashers and through the hall. she could scarcely distinguish between the selves she pretended to be in front of others. the tall. She hated acting. desperately searching for somewhere she belonged. join me in welcoming Ivy – since we all know she wanted to make an entrance. She was in for a long semester. you missed my best re-enactments. I’ll let you off the hook this tie. lost teenager. she was late. he added: “Come on everyone. thinking themselves to be hilarious. “All right everyone.couldn't believe she got stuck with drama. “Well what do we have here?” Jay asked.” “Sorry Jay. turning to the class. Great. the happy daughter who doesn't mind that she doesn’t know anything of her biological parents.” She nodded and then took the closest empty seat to the door. the role of the supportive best friend who never judges. but she was just like the rest of them – a pathetic. don't expect me to be so nice. “Sorry Jay. mocking voice. listen up. until she reached room 68 – the dreaded drama room. Well. and the self she would be. She was constantly acting.” The class laughed and droned out choruses of “welcome Ivy”. “It’s Ivy!” And then.

“That would kind of defeat the purpose of the trust exercises wouldn't it? If I let you pick your own partners. whiny voice. “Okay. You know. “I want the other half of you to pick a name out of the hat and then divvy yourselves up. “I've put half your names on a piece of paper and thrown them into this hat. She picked a piece of paper out of the hat. “Hey!” he said. imitating her squeaky voice. She never even opened up to Adam. “Drama is a highly personal art form. raising his voice for emphasis. you'd all partner up with a friend that you already trust. How are any of us supposed to be able to act in front of one another if we can't even trust each other?” He paused after this. Not. Of course.” “And. unrolled it.” he continued. the one where you're supposed to stand in front of someone else and fall into their arms – just trusting that they'll catch you.” he added. Jay had become known throughout the school for waltzing into various different classrooms to conduct his trust exercises. one that requires us to open up every inch of ourselves to the public. and read the name “Ian Landry” in .” The hat slowly began to make its way over to Ivy.” Jay replied. “That wouldn't be any fun now would it?” The class groaned.groups of two for those trust exercises that I know you guys love so much. but for dramatic effect. she would definitely have fun in this class. it’s extremely important.” Great. not so much for an answer. “No Cristi.” “Can't we choose our own partners?” Cristi Tinkerton asked in her high-pitched. We need to be able to trust one another. “Don't mock the exercise.” He motioned to the black top hat he held in his hands. how was she to be expected to open up in front of a whole class. she should have known they'd be doing them first thing in this class.

. looking down at her feet. He swallowed and she could see his Adam's apple rise up and down as he did so. It was almost identical to the voice in her dream. She looked around to see where Ian was seated. He couldn't be the voice from her dream. He didn't say anything to her for a long time.. Get a hold of yourself. he was sitting all the way in the back. Super. His smooth. suddenly self-conscious. after the dreams of the nights before. She stared back. She couldn't tear my eyes away from his. it didn't mean anything. She wanted to fall into him. “Hey. she wanted to fill the distance between them. Maybe he'd figured out that she was his partner. resisting the magnetic pull between them. at least she would finally get a chance to prove to herself that the dreams weren't the cause of some mysterious connection between the two of them. She had to strain her body to stay away from him. It couldn't mean anything.” he finally managed. She . It took her a while to find him. the way most people do when they realize they've been caught staring at someone. but he didn't. She couldn't let this happen. a feat that was near impossible. Stop looking at him. blocked by his friend Cole's head. She hadn't even noticed he was in this class yet. falling into his lap. And never let go. his eyes intense. But what if. she would be moved into his class AND partnered with him.” she said. it did. “Hi. Okay. no one else was. What was going on? She forced her eyes away from his as she reached him. given that no one in the class had moved yet. what if. This seemed unlikely though. Oh well. She finally sat down next to him.. velvety voice reverberated through her bones. As he spoke. all the while not tearing her gaze away from his. He just kept staring at her with an expression she couldn't quite read. She walked over to him. this was getting really creepy. She was in charge of my own body. and just as intense. He was already looking at her. She got up from my seat and my feet started moving in his direction on their own accord. And even if he was. She looked around the room to find him..bold black letters. She expected him to look away. pulling the seat as far away from him as she possibly could. It seemed just her luck that.

” she managed.” he finally said. She feigned attentiveness as he outlined the procedure of the “trust game” – like there was anyone at this school who didn't know the rules by this point. “You're Ivy. “I wonder why we haven't started yet.” he said.didn't belong to anyone. “I dunno. She wasn't sure how much more she could take. trying desperately to calm her nerves.” she admitted. causing her heart to skip a beat. “Huh... “They changed your schedule too?” “Yeah. Why did he have to move closer? Why did he have to be her partner? Why was this happening to her? He moved his hand dangerously close to hers.. She wasn't sure if she was imagining it or not. right?” “Yeah. Are you dreading it as much as I am?” “Probably more. It seemed like he was holding something back. but it sounded like his breathing was just as uneven as hers was.” he said. “All right. trying to sound nonchalant. .. take it away guys. She inhaled deeply. “Don't hold back. trying to distract herself from the strange sensations taking place inside her body. Like there was something he wasn't telling her. He pulled his chair closer to hers. with a peculiar expression of bewilderment on his face. “Sucks to be us.” he retorted. both looking for the other one to take the lead. struggling to control herself.” he concluded. Luckily Jay's loud voice echoed across the room at that moment. “So.” she muttered.” They stood up rather awkwardly.” she replied. after a long pause. after clearing his throat. “How'd you know?” “Lucky guess.

for several moments longer. but he looked just as confused as she did. She didn't know how she was going to resist or if it was even possible. to stop her fall. Finally.“I guess we might as well get this over with.” She guessed now was as good a time as any. She half expected to put her foot out behind her. She let go of her center of gravity. “Okay.. She didn't know what she was going to do or if there was even anything she could do. sounding completely sincere. She would never succumb to him. having a mind of its own. But she needed to.” he added. All she knew was that she could never let Ian have her. . When she finally managed to regain control of her body. She hated the sensation of falling. She never wanted him to let go. She could never let him bring danger to her and her Nana Izzy and Adam. the way she usually did.” he finally said. She hated having to rely on someone else to catch me. “My turn?” Ivy grabbed her keys and ran out the door. so that her back was facing him. she felt his arms loop through hers. strapping her to his body. She looked into his face to see if he was somehow responsible for this. his perfect lips curling up into a slight smile. But she didn't.. She felt a knot in her throat. “You promise to catch me?” “I promise. He held her there. She hated this game.” she said when she had situated herself. Sure. desperate to break whatever spell she was under. making light of the situation. in his arms. However she had imagined her reaction to be. She couldn't fall fast enough. after what felt like decades. “You want to go first? I promise I won't drop you. her body took over. “Um. A rush of heat pulsated through her body.” he said. Especially Ian. Her head was spinning. she twisted out of his arms. “That was interesting. bracing herself for the fall. His eyes locked on to hers as he tried to regain his composure. The moment she stepped in front of him.” he said finally. it paled in comparison to this. She turned around.

Running faster than she'd ever run before. She didn't know whether she was racing to tell him she would never be with him. . sad. Did he really think he would win her over that easily? His eyes seemed to go on forever. The fear.. She forced herself to focus on the words of Luna’s warning.The minute she got in the car and started the engine she raced out of her neighbourhood. The fear. Focus on the fear. on the grave and frightened look in her eyes. not when she had been given fair warning. Be strong. Never. To succumb. and. “No!” she finally managed. got up and slammed the door shut. She shut the engine off. which greatly irritated her. “I. it would only make it more difficult. She would never walk into danger willingly. Ian glanced up from his book. Running to him on a mixture of fear and desire. No. She had to console him. driving faster than she'd ever driven in her life.” he began. “No don't. He closed his book and started to rise. she saw Ian sitting on the bench in front of the building. “Don't you dare get up!” He looked puzzled. To take everything back. looking more nervous than she'd seen him before. Ian looked surprised. Her body yearned to step closer. Her body ached all over with longing as she reached him. As she pulled into the school. To kiss his soft. You can never have me Ian. or if she was racing to fall into his arms.” she interrupted. they were completely glossed over. irritatingly. reading a book. Never. “I came here to tell you that it's never going to happen with me and you. No. She couldn't allow myself to think such thoughts.” She couldn't believe how much strength it took just to stand two feet away from him. He looked so sad. wine colored lips. To press her head against his chest.

don't say anything. “Of course. Like he was nervous. you know that. As he spoke. she immediately wished she could take them back. For a while she thought he would continue standing there forever. he nodded once.” His face remained composed as she said this. She pulled out the first piece of paper she could find.. She needed to calm down. his face rearranged into its previous blank expression.” As she said the words. She pulled over into the nearest parking lot. This helped her work up her second wind. as if she hadn't said anything. hoping that reading something – anything – could take her mind of Ian. The only place she wanted to go was back to Ian. “Please. “If that's what you. But just as she thought this. A load of shit. interrupting. “ Okay Ivy. But then. She needed to soothe his worries. This is already taking all my strength and it only makes it harder when you speak. Like he was afraid that maybe she didn't feel for him what he felt for her. That she loved him. It was painfully difficult for her to remain firm. Please leave me alone. with striking subtlety. looking for anything to distract her thoughts from wandering towards Ian. Please. his eyes kept darting up and down from her face to the ground. she turned and walked away from him. to tell him that she needed him. she needed to regroup.. She drove without any idea of where she was going. I don't know that! It's a lie Ian. Please Ian. “Just don't Ian!” She said. It was unnaturally blank. no matter how badly she wanted to. Off the horrible . She opened the dash-board in front of the passenger seat. It's just that.No. She couldn't read anything in the expression on Ian's face. With what little strength she had left.” “No. but she could never let that happen. looking utterly shocked.” he began.” he finally said. I would never make you do anything you didn't want to...

You know. Address: 650 Branton Road.” Lucius's house was anything but modest. RSVP not necessary. She turned and found Libby Sovaire waving to her. she thought they were from school. furniture. She unfolded the crinkled sheet of paper and read: Are you ready to Party?? Then stop by Lucius's 18th birthday party for a wild time. “Ivy!” a voice called out to her as she approached Lucius's front door. and everything else you'd expect to find in a rich person's house. the more people the better – the more distractions. The house was . I pulled out her keys.” she stammered. and headed over to the party. “Thought I'd check it out. She should go. This party must be pretty big. she had my engine on and was pulling the car into reverse. She used to go to parties with Elsie all the time. The whole street was filled with cars. looking positively giddy. Lucius is only the richest guy in school. out of the parking lot. Anything to get her mind of Ian. When she pulled up in front of Lucius's house she couldn't find any place to park. least.pain she felt in her chest. What was she expecting? Whatever. and in the direction of Lucius's house. be social. “We're going to have so much fun. She parked in front of an old Victorian looking house that seemed eerily out of place.” Libby squealed with excitement. cars she recognized from school. hook up with some random guy. or. a party was exactly what she needed to get Ian off her mind. Yes. Anything. Before she could even finish reading the invitation. What was she saying? Of course it is. “I'm so glad you came!” “Yeah. It was completely decked out with all the finest technology. the usual. locked the doors behind her. drink.

” she snorted.” He laughed. “I think I'm gonna like this game. It was totally meaningless. “Everyone knows you can't hold your liquor. which only reinforced just how many people were at this party. “more like ten. “Come on. “a couple right?” She laughed. sarcastically. “Come to get some sugar from your boy Ricky?” Ricky always acted like he was some kind of gangster or something. She just needed to get her mind of Ian. “Let's play a game. smacking her ass as she approached.” He grinned. I may have to take a few to catch up with you. Not that he wasn’t cute with his blue eyes and brown curly hair.” “Damn girl.” she replied. Ricky grinned and poured her two shots of gin.” she said. which was really hilarious given what white trash he was.” “Sure.” “Please. “Hey baby. She downed as many shots as she could before her throat burned too badly to continue. grabbing his hand and dragging him into the nearest bedroom.” she said.” she retorted. Who were all these people? She didn't recognize anyone.” “Aw come on babe. but then he said. “You're standing right in front of the drinks. suddenly confident with the abundance .packed.” “Of course you will.” After all. she really didn't care who she hooked up with. and maybe I'll warm up. why you gotta be so cold?” “Get a couple drinks in me. “Oh I've already had five or six shots baby. Finally she spotted Ricky Herrer over by the drinks. a notorious womanizer at school. She thought one of them was for him. but his personality pretty much ruined anything he had going for him in the looks department. “As if.” he said.

Ricky rolled on top of her. She pushed him down onto the bed. Every inch of her body screamed in protest. Tears streamed from her eyes in a never- . but then he quickly readjusted as she pressed her hips into his. She ran out of the bedroom as fast as she could. She feigned a low moan. She headed over to the drinks table again. running her fingers through his hair. reaching his hands up her shirt.” At first he looked offended. hoping to punish my body for defying her. What was different now? “Ian!” Her body screamed. Her heart froze.” he groaned. “Some one's hungry for some Ricky.of alcohol in her system. slipping her tongue into his mouth. She started trembling all over. She couldn't catch a breath. trying to trick her body into wanting this.” She snapped back. “Get off me!” She finally screamed. He let out a low moan and started fiddling with her bra strap. What was wrong with her? Why couldn't she do this? It's not like she hadn't done this before. one after the other. She pinned him down. covering his mouth. Don't ruin this by talking. Great. “Shhh. hook up with someone she didn't want to. The shot glass fell out of her hand and she slid to the floor. she was talking to herself now. But it didn't. She threw back four shots of cinnamon schnapps. What was she doing? This wasn’t who she wanted to be – the kind of person she was ashamed of. For making everything so difficult. unable to control herself. It wasn't as easy as she thought. She pressed her mouth over his. shoving him off. Her body burned with pain. She’d completely lost it. trying to take the lead. Her head started spinning and she felt like she was going to pass out. messing around with Ricky. “Shut up. ignoring the burn. All she could think about was Ian.

That I really will try to stay away. the room felt peaceful. She looked up into his eyes. She didn't care what happened to her. her angel. It couldn't be worse than what she was without him.” He pulled her up by both hands.” a voice said. shaking her eyes open. He lead her into the bedroom she had just left.” he soothed. “Let's get you out of this crowd. she needed more. It was the voice of an angel. pulling his face to hers. She ran up to him. completely embarrassed. Her whole body began tingling. She cried until my head ached. serene. I've been thinking a lot about what you said before and you're right. but now.” “Shhh. Her own personal savior.” He paused for a second before continuing. “I'm a mess. because if you feel anywhere close to the way I feel around you.” What? He couldn't stay away from her. wrapping his arm around her to help her stand. Her heart pounded so heavily it felt as if it was visible from the outside. Back to the room where this whole mess began. His arms wrapped around me as we kissed. “Listen Ivy. “Don't look at me!” She wailed. Except this time. . why was he helping her? After she'd been so cruel. Until it throbbed so hard that she honestly thought it might combust.ending flow. Shelooked up at Ian's beautiful pale face. “Ivy. His eyes were filled with concern and sincerity. She pushed him onto the bed. She knew it was what she wanted. But it wasn't there. Nothing had ever felt so right. She looked at him through tear-filled eyes. afraid to see his disgust. then my presence must be unbearable. She couldn't seem to get close enough to him. The only emotion she could discern was sadness. I'm going to try to make this as easy for you as possible. it can't be helping. the only thing she could ever imagine wanting was him. looking up into his eyes. from my head to my toes. He hadn't really done anything to deserve it. “I just wanted to tell you that I understand.

I'm trying. in that old Victorian house and I. trying to stay firm.” she said. “Wait. tracing the contours of his abdomen. and stood up. suddenly curious. “I didn't come here for this. . it's hard for me. I can't do this. “I know Ivy. His tongue plunged into her mouth. I've never had to resist anything like this before. She ran my hands up his shirt. breathing heavily. suddenly hurt. “I can't do this Ivy. “No Ivy. You don't want this. I. “I sensed you were in trouble and I couldn't stay away. I couldn't just ignore your pain. “What does that have to do with you sensing me? With you knowing I was in trouble?” He stared into her eyes. calling attention to his beautiful Adam's apple. pressing against hers. “To stay away from me? Yeah. I can't take advantage of you. “You're not Ian. Not really.” “Shut up.” “Then why did you come?” She asked.” she said.saw you arrive. looking as though he was trying to gage what her reaction would be. “Ivy you're drunk.never tearing her lips away from his. He gave in for a while.” “You sensed me?” she asked. pushing her away. some job you're doing with that. He ran his fingers through her hair with a mixture of gentleness and passion. I've wanted this for so long. “What are you talking about?” He swallowed. “I live next door. nibbling on his ear.” he said.” He struggled with himself. “I want this.” he said.” His eyes grew intense as he drew in a breath..” he paused.” He pushed her off completely now..” “And?” She asked. trying to climb back on top of him.. I'm trying Ivy. until he pushed her away from him again.

to let you handle it on your own like you wanted it. It changes with our emotions – when we're happy.” he began. It was too much to bear. I sensed it vibrating within my body.” She didn't know what to say to this. sad.” She began.this bond between us.” “So. Energies or something like that.” “But what does that have to do with you sensing I was in trouble? I mean so yeah. I don't think it's just that.. It didn't make any sense.” he continued. “Yeah?” “I – I can feel things. but I'm just as lost as you are. Everything about your energy draws me in. objects. I tried to ignore it. unique. lonely. I needed to come. sarcastically. people. matter-of-factly. it's even more over-powering than it would be normally. “that's how I knew. but it fluctuates every minute. But how did you know how I was feeling?” He smiled slightly. I think.” “So. stopping before he completed the thought. energy changes all the time.. “how come I can't feel when your energy .. But I couldn't. “You have an energy unlike anything I've ever encountered. and so on. “I don't know Ivy.And every energy is different.” I started finally. And with this. To make sure you were okay. It feels like something more. you knew I was here. As. what you're saying is. “I have an energy?” “Yes. it's just our energy that draws us to each other?” She asked.” “You feel energies?” She asked.. It's essential make up stays the same.” “And so.. To see you. “because Ivy. It takes enormous effort on my part to resist it – to stay away.” he said. suddenly hurt for some reason she couldn’t understand. Most people just aren't sensitive enough to recognize it as energy.“I. “Everything has an energy – colors.. “How come. mine does to you. He inhaled deeply before continuing. Unlike anything I could have imagined.

Relief swelled through her.. and she dodged out of his grasp to throw up on the floor. “I wish.” she said. She got lost in his eyes. Was this what he was talking about? Was this her response to his shift in energy? He looked at her for a long time. You just haven't developed it well enough yet. Ian was on his feet with his arms around her. And. you don't know what you're feeling. She'd never seen him smile like this before – it was a smile that reached all the way to his eyes. The way she felt when I was around him.” he began. before she could even begin. He must have noticed her sudden understanding because. “Me too. She looked up at him to find his eyes fixated on her. “Me too.” She didn’t know how long they stood there. he smiled. suddenly. but you would think with this. “I – I wish it could stay like this forever. He wrapped his arms around her tighter and drew in a deep breath.” “I don't know about that. It was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen before. Like she needed to take it away.” he said. anticipating her fall. her insides were charging upwards. never wanting to find her way out. I might be able to pick up on something. The way she felt every time he was pained – like she wanted to take it away. resting his chin on the top of her head. “This might be a little much for you to handle right now. Her heart beat faster and her head started to feel light. She only knew that it could never be long enough.. his eyes twinkling in the light. in each others’ arms.. But as soon as she said it she remembered the way she felt in my dreams. . she felt her stomach flip. “I think. How much did you drink anyway?” She pressed my head against his chest. The next thing she knew. I wish this moment didn't ever have to end.” He was silent for a while.” She began. breathing in his scent. thinking things over. as her body's way a punishing her.this bond.shifts? I mean I know you say we aren't sensitive enough to it. But. “I think maybe you can.

He lay beside her on the bed and she turned to kiss him. Her heart fluttered with relief that Ian was back. but Lucius. He held a wastebasket in front of her face and pulled back my hair. struggling to restrain him. Then he walked back over to her. She didn’t know if I fell asleep or was just bordering on unconsciousness. “I think I'm alright now.He vanished and was by her side again in an instant. with absolutely no intention of going anywhere.” she said “No!” “Stop!” “Please.” he breathed. “Don't leave me”. but the next thing she knew she heard footsteps coming through the door. She made a silent promise to myself never to drink again. “I'll be right back. I'll be right back. “No. scooped her into his arms and brought her over to the bed. but paused before reaching the door. looking at her on the floor. making her forget to breathe. “I'm sorry. “Rest here for me.” He turned to walk away. But something wasn't right. Something felt horribly wrong. rolling on top of her.” He smiled again.” “No it's okay. He twined her hair around his fingers as she continued throwing up. “I promise. okay?” “Okay.” she cried. “No.” he said as he stood up.” She sighed.” he started. . “I knew you wanted me too. “Oh.” She replied. Her heart fluttered in response to his kiss. She opened my eyes and saw that it wasn't Ian at all. I guess I didn't think that one through. She was so embarrassed.” she breathed. His face took on a mixture of sadness and joy. “I'm just going to go get you some water.” he said. grabbing the cuff of his pants. He kissed the top of her head and placed his cool lips against her forehead.

completely ignoring her commands. His nostrils flared out and his breathing was heavy.” He looked as though he would never forgive himself. “I will personally see to it that your death is a slow and painful one. I wasn't thinking.” At first Lucius tried to laugh it off.” he moaned. But something about the look on Ian's face must have registered in his thoughts because he suddenly went very still.” he threatened. “Stop! Lucius. His fingers froze at the top of the collar on her shirt. She thought he was about to let him go. You know you want it.His hand ran up her torso. Just let me go!” Ian set him down on his feet. “Don't fight it Ivy.” he began.Get off!” She said putting all her force into getting out from under him. . His breathing was so heavy. unbuttoning the buttons one by one. he was pulled off of me before she could understand what was happening.” he said. “If you ever touch her again. But she didn't need to. Finally. to pretend it was all in good fun. blood streaming from his nose. Ian stood there for several more moments. “Okay. Or she was too weak.” he said glaring at him as he released him. I never should have left you like this. looking more serious than I'd ever seen him.. “Get out of here. “No. “Ivy I'm so sorry.. he turned to look at her and his expression softened. “Ivy. yeah. but suddenly his fist jammed into his face. She looked up to see Ian holding him up in the air by his collar. Sure. “Okay. No Lucius get off of me!” She tried to push him off but he was too heavy. Lucius ran out the door. looking so angry that it frightened her. fuming.

“Come on. “I'll go make you some tea okay? And maybe something to eat. She handed them to him without a moment’s hesitation. With the exception of asking for directions. suddenly.” He smiled slightly.“It's okay. He looked at her for a moment.” . He lifted her up and brought her inside.” He was out of her room before she could object. He got out of the car and hurried over to her side. Good thing she’d decided to wear a bra today. and then down at her opened shirt. and lowered her down onto my bed. and gently lowered her into the seat. he asked her for her keys. “I'll drive you home. She must have fallen asleep because. “It's okay Ian. She didn't know what he was thinking. to avoid the big crowd in the front of the house. He closed the passenger door on her and walked around to his side of the car. Her red bra was showing.” He took her out the back exit. “It's lemon tea. She thought more to comfort her than anything else. As he pulled into her driveway. they drove in silence the entire way to her house. you must feel awful.” he breathed.” he said. where she told him her bedroom was. but you probably shouldn't have the caffeine. scooping her into them. “I'm so sorry I let this happen to you Ivy. “Nothing happened. because it didn't feel sincere. opened the door.” she tried to assure him. He carried her upstairs. His breathing never steadied.” He didn't relax. she was jolted awake as Ian lowered a mug of tea and a plate onto her bedside table. but came over to the bed and slid his arms under her. It was that or Earl Grey. He looked painfully sad and angry as he slowly started buttoning up her shirt. He brought her around to the passenger side of the car. I'd probably be far worse off if it weren't for you. I'll bring your car back over in the morning.

Finally.” he added.” He looked at her for a moment and then resigned. “Alright.” . as she examined the plate. “don't go.” She stared up at him and he stared back. I’ll be here if you need anything. Please don't go. he kissed the top of her forehead and made his way to leave. “And some cinnamon raison toast. “I'll come by tomorrow to bring over your car.“Oh.” “No!” I started. but I'll sleep on the floor. I remember it used to make me feel better when I was sick.

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