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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Stacey Anne would soon put an end to it. an air of defiance in his voice. “Just that you worked a lot and really dug art. “Yeah.” “And you told him what?” Ivy probed.” “What. “Oh Ivy you should hear him! He’s simply amazing! He can play practically every intstrument beautiful and the music well. but magical? Really? Let’s not get carried away here. with mounting enthusiasm. neglected to mention any interaction between Ian and her to anyone.” . “it sort of carries you away with it. I told him you kicked its ass.” he retorted.”she said. her breath coming up short. so you two have been talking?” She asked. umm. “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. “Yeah we had music together.because she wanted to and because she felt it was right in her bones. makes you forget all your worries and troubles so that you and his music is the only thing in the world. it wasn’t as though she had any claim over either of them. “What were you two doing talking about me anyhow?” “He just asked me about you is all. really. “What did he ask?” “He just said you seemed interesting is all and wanted to know more about you. his voice casual and unaffected. Ivy finally laughed. get a grip on yourself would you? I mean I know you’ve had your crushes before. She didn’t know why this irritated her so much. “Oh Adam. still laughing. It was magical.” “You’ll just have to hear it yourself if you don’t believe me.” “Oh. “Oh. or if they did. told me.” Ivy stammered.” he replied.” At this.” Adam replied.” Adam began. “Whatever. hesitantly. “He uh. and then added.” he paused for a second in thought.

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

He was prophecized to be the Faeries’ King. Ian: Ian walked through the border that lead from Faerie to the Mortal Realm. birth and re-birth. his whole of existence had been spent in this new world. who had the power to make all in her presence feel like Kings and Queens themselves. He found it irritating beyond belief that the only entryway between the Faery Realm and the mortal one was through and in Faerie. Sorry Adam. fell instantly in love with her and decided he would not be content lest he could have her. 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. “Call me later okay?” “Sure.” said Ivy as she swung her bag over her shoulder and headed out of the bookstore. Etienne. Certain faeries had affinities towards creation. sobriety and intoxication. The Queen. Then. however. and did not love Damien. upon meeting the beautiful Etienne. He.” he said.reason to leave. the indivual and the community.” “Ok . unchanging land – it emphasized order. Faerie was the capital of the Faery Realm and ultimately had command over everything that went on within it. They carried out their duties harmoniously. In the past. the perfect match for Etienne as rulers of the Otherworld. There was one Queen. logic. and all was balanced. and balance above all else. confident that one day her love would be returned to him. had a heart for another. taken aback. Damien asked Etienne what it would take to become her king. Ian’s lovely grandfather. life and death. they lived together harmoniously. and destruction. I’m just not feeling so great. It was the balanced. towards her car. a world that necessitated the existence of Faerie. Determined. in harmonious cooperation – Faerie never needed to exist. He quite emphatically agreed. 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 very heart of the Faery Realm and the center point for all of its magic. who oversaw all things and all was peaceful. He had never known the world that way. . however. came Damien. The Fey used to live together. “I think I’m gonna bail. For all of nature is a process of creation and destruction. Etienne. chaos and order. order.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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