COPYRIGHT ALERT: The Twilight characters are not mine, they are Stephenie Meyer's. The other characters, however, ARE mine, and so is the story idea. Please do not steal it. Thanks. :)
What else could possibly go wrong?? Anira’s life has been a complete disaster this past week, and obviously it’s not going to give her a break any time soon. The local power plant almost had a meltdown, a bunch of stupid teenagers burnt down half of the forest she lives in, the government found out that she was living in an abandoned shed and threatened to move her into an orphanage, and worst of all, HER BOYFRIEND DUMPED HER. When she wakes up on the first school day after winter break with that same sinking feeling in her stomach, she knows something else will go wrong, but never in her wildest dreams did she imagine it would lead her on a path like this. A story of self-discovery, this anything-but-average teenager is forced to confront a past she never knew existed, survive an encounter with deadly yet somehow civilized vampires, and juggle a secret that no one can ever know, right in the middle of the worst week of her life.
Palo, Iowa wasn’t supposed to be this unpredictable.
Chapter 1: Get me out of this mess
I opened my eyes groggily and groaned. My stomach was twisting and turning again, like it had almost every other day this past week. And almost every other day this past week, something had gone wrong. The first day had been the absolute worst though, in my opinion.
Hey, Anira, I need to talk to you, Nick, my boyfriend, had said. It was the last day of school before winter break, and we had just climbed off the bus to go home. I had looked at him and smiled, trying to ignore that gut-wrenching feeling I always got when something bad was going to happen. I… Uh, I think we should just be friends. We just aren’t very good together, you know? I hope you understand. It’s nothing personal. We can still be friends though, right? I had agreed with a little too much enthusiasm.
The next day, after I had cried myself to sleep, I’d barely noticed that same feeling when I woke up- I thought it was a side effect from all the sobs- until late in the night when I caught a whiff of smoke and realized that my forest was burning. Apparently a group of teenagers had thought this was a good place for a bonfire to celebrate the week-long vacation. Why they had wanted to be outside in December was beyond me, but there they were, burning down the only thing that hid my house from view.
Then, of course, after the trees had been drastically thinned, the inevitable happened: I got a notice on my door saying that my house was on government property and I needed to go to court to get a real home under penalty of the law. Of course, as soon as I showed up and they realized I was only fifteen, they threatened to send me to an orphanage or foster home until I was legally old enough to live alone. I had two weeks to pick a foster home of my choice before they forced me into some rotten place with the other homeless kids.
If that wasn’t enough to take in with all I had already been going through, the local power plant was in danger of having a meltdown, and I had to work there for days trying to calm everyone down and take control of the situation. By the time all the chaos was over, I had only three days left of my break to relax.
And of course relaxation was an impossibility with my home being threatened and my heart completely shattered in my chest.
Now it was the first day of the new semester, and I could tell that something else was going to go wrong. But what else could possibly go wrong?! After everything I’d been through in the past week, what else could go wrong?!
I sat up grudgingly and stretched my aching muscles. I wasn’t used to sleeping so often. Usually I only had to sleep two or three times a week, but I was so upset during the break that I had actually slept every night. It wasn’t natural.
After going to my closet and grabbing a dull green blouse and khakis, I went into the kitchen to get some breakfast. It wasn’t a very big room, with only the bare necessities to keep it running: a refrigerator, a sink, a stove, and a little wooden table with one chair on either side. The refrigerator was actually pretty unnecessary at this time of year. Since my house had no heater or air conditioner, the food just adapted to whatever temperature it was outside, and since it had just snowed… Well, my food would be plenty cool without manmade appliances.
I knew perfectly well that not having a heater was strange and unthinkable to any of the humans around me. It was part of the reason why I had never invited anyone to my house. But to be perfectly honest, I liked my house without all those silly indulgences. I could really taste the fresh air when the musty air of a machine wasn’t in the way, and besides, the thing would be unnecessary anyway. I couldn’t feel temperatures. Well, I could feel when the weather changed, and I could tell when it was hot or cold, but I was never actually affected by temperature. My skin was just the same 85˚ all the time.
I grabbed an apple from the fridge and went into the bathroom as I ate, my feet dragging a little as I walked. The bathroom was a little smaller than the kitchen, with a bath tub, a toilet, a sink, and a mirror. I lived in an extremely small house.
I looked at my reflection in the mirror without interest. Just a little over a week ago my eyes had been bright and shining with life. Now they were just a dull forest green, similar to my shirt color, with no emotions and no light. There were shadows under my eyelids that hadn’t been there before. I may have been sleeping more than usual, but that certainly didn’t mean I’d been sleeping well.
My hair was an unkempt mess, knotted and tangled from the many days of neglect. I grabbed my brush from the sink now, not wanting to look like a zombie when I got on the bus to meet Nick. I couldn’t let him know how much his decision had affected me. I had to suck it up and act like nothing had changed, as if it didn’t matter in the slightest that he had broken my heart. It wasn’t really his fault, I guess. He wasn’t trying to be mean or anything. He just didn’t think we were right for each other.
I sighed when I was finally done and watched the gossamer strands flow all the way down my legs, halting just below my knees. The name Rapunzel fluttered through my mind as I glanced back in the mirror. I was a strange sight to see, with flawless pale skin and pale hair that ran all the way down to my calves. Maybe that was why Nick had dumped me…
I shook the thought out of my head and checked my watch. 7:30. I still had 30 minutes before I had to be at the bus stop, and I was already set to leave. What was I supposed to do for 30 whole minutes?
My eyes brightened just slightly as an idea came into my head. I ran back into the kitchen to look out the windows at the surrounding forest- at least what was left of it. Was it safe? Would anybody really be out and about this early in the morning? Ordinarily I wouldn’t be too worried about getting caught, but after those stupid teenagers had burned down the woods, I couldn’t be too careful. The coast seemed clear, and that uncomfortable feeling in my stomach had subsided, for now, so maybe I could get some exercise in before I left.
Before I could change my mind, I reached behind me to reveal the crease in my shirt where I had installed the zipper. Very carefully, I pulled the zipper down until the hole was completely open and exhaled in relief as my wings slipped through the flap. I had been too preoccupied over my vacation to stretch out my wings, but now nobody was around, I could sense that it was safe, and I had 30 minutes of free time to kill. What better way to spend that time than to fly as fast as I could and just tune out the world for a few precious moments?
I fluttered my wings experimentally, smiling as my feet lifted off the ground. It felt so good to finally use them again! I shot out the back door after a short warm-up and let the world blur around me.
I thought about my past while I flew, all the memories I had before this week that didn’t make me want to hide in bed all day. Before I had lived on Earth, I had grown up in a small planet called Avalon. I lived there for eight years, but then one day our Fairy Council had come to my house and asked my parents if they could send me to Earth. They sent different fairies to Earth every year to help the humans with their natural disasters and magical infestations, but only the ones with the best talents could go. I was honored to be a part of their program and left immediately. I had always admired the fairies that came to this planet, and I had hoped they would pick me, but I had also thought that my talent wasn’t good enough. While some fairies could bend the elements or turn invisible, my only unique quality was my sense of danger. I knew when something bad would happen. I didn’t know what it would be, but I always knew, and it had saved my people’s lives many times. So they sent me here, to this tiny town of Palo, Iowa, where I could live safely undetected and help those in need.
Well, that plan was in the process of being uprooted and there was absolutely nothing I could do about it. The officials had trusted me to keep our secret, and though nobody knew what I really was, the fact that they had found my house was enough to put us all in grave danger. Nobody could know we existed, humans and other mythical creatures alike. We could not be discovered. It was the law.
I slowed to a more human speed and dropped down to the ground when I heard a rustle in the bushes. A deer jumped out of nowhere and scampered across the path to disappear into the trees once again. That same uneasy feeling came back as I watched the creature, and I backed away on foot. Whatever that creature was running from had to be the danger I was to face today. I wasn’t going to let it find me here, completely vulnerable and with no witnesses.
I opened my wings and fled back to the house.
Chapter 2: Sweet and Syrupy Surprises
When I finally reached my front door again, it was 7:50. I figured it was close enough to 8:00 that I could go to the bus stop. I didn’t want to go too early, because that would signal to other teenagers that I had no life- which was, of course, completely true lately- and the last thing I wanted was a bad reputation. Or any reputation, for that matter.
Naturally I was the first one at the corner, even when I was only walking there by foot, so I sat down and waited for the other students to arrive.
I would have loved to fly to school every day, but somebody was bound to see me, and since that was out of the question, I was forced to either take the bus or learn how to drive, which wasn’t going to happen with my lack of funds for a car. I really didn’t mind so much though; I was used to it by now. The only downside to acting ‘human’ was the speed. I was just as fast as any other person around me on foot, but faeries could fly up to an average of 120 mph by wing. So going 35 mph on an overloaded school bus could get a little tedious after a while.
Finally I saw the other students walk across the street. Only three people shared my bus stop: a boy named Chris and two girls named Lily and Samantha. The girls were twins, and nobody else could seem to tell them apart, but with my supernatural eyesight, it was easy for me to identify the differences.
“Hey Anira,” they said sweetly as they walked up. “We heard about you and Nick. We’re so sorry! You two seemed so perfect together!” I tried to mask my grimace and smiled sadly.
“Yeah, I thought so too,” I mumbled. “Well, there’ll be other guys right?” They both smiled and nodded, seeming pleased that I had already ‘gotten over’ my crush. Chris just gave me a funny look before turning back to the twins.
“So, like I was saying,” he said, “the car was totally totaled! You should have seen it. The guy in the back car was all scratched up and bloody, but the guy in the Volvo up front just seemed mad. He didn’t have a hair out of place! He started cussing under his breath, and…” I sighed inwardly. This was the kind of chaos I had been sent here to prevent, and here I was sulking about my latest teenage drama. I had to whip myself into shape if I was going to stay on this planet. I was being entirely too self-centered. I could have easily stopped those cars from colliding, if I had known they were going to crash. “…he helped the other guy out though,” I heard Chris finish. “I was amazed. I mean, honestly, I would never want to help the guy who totaled my car.” I pressed my lips together. Well, at least there were a few good humans in the world. I knew that most people would agree with Chris. It must have taken a lot of self-control for that man to help the injured one.
Just then, the bus drove up and opened its doors, letting us all in. I sat down in the first empty seat I could find and looked out the window glumly. Well, it was too late to help the victims of the car crash now. Back to sulking.
We passed the wreck area after a few minutes, and I saw what he meant. I saw an older-looking Toyota car with its front end crushed like an accordion, and a shiny silver Volvo with its back end looking just like it. There were two police cars and an ambulance there, with plenty of officials wandering around taking notes. There were two people in white coats loading a stretcher into the ambulance. The bus had slowed to a crawling speed to match the rest of the traffic, and I let my hearing range outward to see if I could make out was anyone was saying.
“Do you know what happened?” one of the policemen asked, pencil poised on paper as he looked at the other, seemingly unscathed victim. His back was turned towards me, so I could tell if he was actually injured or not. The only thing that really stood out was his wild bronze hair.
“I think the man was talking on his cell phone and didn’t realize traffic had stopped,” the boy replied. “Other than that, I can’t explain why he rear-ended me. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I don’t want to be late for school.” I saw him walk towards a black car that was waiting for him and fidgeted uncomfortably. His voice was syrupy sweet, like honey. It was inhuman.
The bus sped up and he disappeared behind us.
I watched out the window for anything else that might seem unusual, feeling on edge after that little experience. Maybe I was just being paranoid, but sense of danger was only getting stronger. Maybe he was a part of it?
The bus stopped to let a few more kids get on. I heard one person pass me, but the other one stopped just next to my seat. The twins giggled from a few places behind me.
“Uh, hey,” Nick said, shifting his weight awkwardly. “Do you mind if I sit next to you? All the, uh, empty seats are taken.” I smiled weakly and nodded, trying extremely hard to make the beating of my heart slow. It wasn’t that he regretted anything. He just didn’t have anywhere else to sit. “Thanks.” He gave me a small smile and sat down, careful to keep a good two inches of space between us. The bus moved forward again.
We got to school around 8:25, which was about ten minutes later than we usually did. This only gave us five minutes before the bell rang for class to start. Ordinarily I would have hung out with Nick and his friends until I was practically late to homeroom, but under the circumstances, I was only too eager for us to part ways. I wasn’t mad at him, but I could feel the broken beats of my heart quite clearly when he was around, and just needed some time alone to sort out my thoughts.
I walked into my chemistry classroom with plenty of time to spare and started shuffling through my notes. It was rather hard to put them in the correct order with how distracted I was, and I gave up as soon as I realized I could barely even read the words on the page. I scrubbed my eyes with the back of my fist, hoping nobody was paying any attention to me.
Just then, a wave of unbearably sweet aroma washed over me and I stiffened. Somewhere in my subconscious, I heard the bell ring.
“Okay class,” our teacher said, “before we get started on today’s lesson, I’d like to introduce our new student. Please welcome Miss Alice Cullen.”
Chapter 3: Golden Eyes
Vampires. So that was the danger I had sensed. It was easy enough to tell what she was, with the ghostly white skin and inhuman façade. This description was rather similar to that of a faerie, however, and this vampire could have easily passed for one if it weren’t for the scent. Unlike other mythical creatures, faeries didn’t have a scent. Werewolves smelled like animals, vampires smelled vaguely like candy, humans smelled like the blood running through their veins. Faeries smelled like the air they breathed. We were completely undetectable if you couldn’t see us.
The one thing that confused me about this creature’s appearance was her eyes; they weren’t red like the other vampires’, but golden. Why were her eyes such a strange color? And why was she letting her prey know she was there? Weren’t vampires supposed to keep the secret from humans? They were bound to notice if she attacked one of their friends. And how could she resist the smell? I couldn’t imagine how much self-control it took for her to stay in this room with all the pulses throbbing around her.
She smiled brightly at the class and walked over to the desk directly in front of me. Her movements were lithe and graceful, naturally, and she seemed completely relaxed. I had to know what this vampire was thinking.
One of the many useful abilities that came with being a faerie was that we could know the emotions of the people around us simply by changing eyelids. We had three different ‘eye settings’ that helped us understand them better.
The first set of eyelids let us see the aura, or overall personality, of a person; whoever we were watching would seemingly change into one color, on a scale of black to white. The lighter the color, the better the person, and the darker the color, the more wicked the person. The second set allowed us to see everyone’s emotions; there were many different colors to show us what a person was feeling, and often those colors swirled together. It was quite convenient in situations like this, although it didn’t really give me the answers to any of my questions. Just a better idea of what I was dealing with. The third set was just our natural eyelids, the kind that humans had.
I closed my lower lids and examined Alice again, careful and curious at the same time.
This vampire’s aura was unusually light, which surprised me. Most vampires couldn’t pull off any color other than a smoky gray, but this one had more of a calm morning sky-type color. It was unnerving. I had never encountered something like this before.
I switched to my second lids and began picking through her emotions, trying to pinpoint all the different colors I saw. The most dominant emotion I saw was a bright, almost neon pink, which meant she was excited. Excited about what? Hopefully just the first day of school, but I’d need to keep a lookout on that. There was also plenty of dull beige there as well, so she was relatively bored at the same time. Well, this was school, and I could imagine she already knew everything they had to teach. There was an orangey tint around the edges of her body as well, signaling that she had complete control of herself. So she wasn’t on the hunt right now, and she didn’t seem to have any particular need for these humans’ blood. That was comforting.
I switched back to my normal vision and turned towards the teacher, satisfied that, at least for now, there was no danger here. But I would be keeping a close eye on our ‘new student,’ as well as any other vampires I might find lurking in the hallways.
The rest of chemistry class was relatively boring. Today was just a review day to get us warmed up for the rest of the semester, so I already knew the material. Even though the humans may have needed to brush up on the periodic table or scientific method, I didn’t. Faeries had extremely acute senses and photographic memories, so it was unnecessary.
We weren’t as sharp as vampires, unfortunately, but we had quite a few advantages that made up for that loss. For instance, we were much stronger than vampires. We gave everyone this absurd impression that we were small and weak and defenseless, when in reality, we were stronger than the average train. Our skin wasn’t as tough as a vampire’s, but it was more durable than a human’s, and our strength made up for that flaw. Our lack of a scent and our ability to travel even quieter than a mouse made us extremely hard to track if you weren’t a faerie yourself, and we could fly much faster than a vampire could run if we had to. On foot we were just as slow as humans, though, which made us more vulnerable.
Finally, the bell rang to let us out of first period. I sighed and pulled my things together to walk to my next class. I saw Alice give me a strange look as I walked by and smiled wryly. So I was an outcast in the fantasy world and the human world.
My next class was Pre-Calculus. It was only a few doors down from chemistry, so naturally I was the first one there. I sat down in my seat and watched the door quietly, in case Alice came into this room as well. I never saw her walk in by the time the bell rang, but that didn’t mean there wasn’t a vampire in the room.
The teacher introduced her as Rosalie Hale. She was painstakingly beautiful, with long golden hair and an hourglass figure. But this one also had those strange golden eyes. She must have been connected to Alice Cullen somehow. How else could there be two vampires with irises I had never seen before in the same school? It couldn’t be a coincidence.
I switched to my lower lids again and examined her aura. It wasn’t quite as light as Alice’s, but I could tell by the way she held herself as she sat down that she was a bit of a snob. It wasn’t necessarily that she was a bad person, just that she thought a lot of herself.
Her emotions weren’t the same as Alice’s; I could see the dull beige swirling around again, but it was much more dominant, and there wasn’t a trace of pink anywhere in her body. Instead, she had a dark blue mixed with the boredom, very subtle, but there nonetheless. This meant she was sad, but why? Ordinarily my first thought would be somebody picking on the new kid, but who would be brave enough to bully a vampire? And who in their right mind would bully her? The pretty ones never got bullied- usually- and even if the humans knew nothing about mythical creatures, their subconscious told them when danger was near. She also showed the same orangey tint, so she too was off the hunt. I didn’t understand these immortals at all.
After that, I began to see vampires everywhere; not just the two girls, but males as well. Walking down the hallways like everyone else, working on their classwork like everyone else, talking to each other like everyone else. It was amazing how well they blended in, while at the same time sticking out, at this school. I had a big burly one named Emmett in my history class, and he seemed amused by all the little humans who were scared stiff of him. He was definitely one of the scarier ones, but his aura was just as light as the others’.
And they all had the same golden eyes.
That is very awesome! Please write soon ^.^