Sunday, May 26, 2013

Confession: This is my Work In Progress

Recently I posted a sneak peek at a work in progress from an aspiring author. Well I just wanted to let you all know that aspiring author was me, is me. 

When it comes to my work in progress I am a little sensitive and nervous. I am my own worst critic and therefore at times question whether or not I should even be writing this story, but alas, I have these characters in my head demanding to have a story so I have decided to write it. I really don't even know if I even plan to do anything with my story once it is done. But I do know that whether I decide to publish it or not I do want to share some of it with you and hope to gain some truthful and honest insight into my writing. 

So I have decided to post my first chapter in its entirety. This story or Jaded as I have been calling it, does not have an actual title. At the moment none that I have come up with really seem to fit the story. Now please keep in mind that this is a very rough and unedited work of mine, so please excuse any grammatical errors you may find. I would however appreciate any feedback that you have to offer. This chapter is a little long, but I hope that you enjoy it. 

 Chapter 1

I have always believed in the existence of the supernatural. Not that I’ve seen anything of the sort, but when I was a kid, I wanted to be a witch. Of course, I also wanted to be a master martial artist, but unfortunately, I am neither. Instead I’m just Jo, a plain Jane girl who pretty much blends in with the background. It’s not that I’m ugly; I guess you could say I’m average. I’m 16 years old and five-foot seven. I have long sandy blonde hair with red highlights that hangs just shy of my butt and eyes that can’t decide whether they are green, blue or hazel. I have an average face with the exception of my high cheekbones, which I inherited from my Cherokee ancestors; I also have freckles that lightly cover my nose and cheeks.

Yup, that’s me; normal. Or so I thought.
               
I am halfway through my junior year at Mayfair High School. Mayfair is pretty much your typical high school. We have the typical cliques: the popular kids, the jocks, cheerleaders, goth kids, nerds, gamers and band kids. I don’t fit in with any of these groups. I have no hand eye coordination, I can’t carry a tune with any kind of instrument, I hate cheerleaders, I’m not that smart and I’m not that good at video games. So where do I fit in? That is a good question; one that I am still trying to figure out.
               
I have two great friends Mickey, yes like the mouse; and Jess. They are both drop dead gorgeous, and extremely popular. Mickey is five foot eight has long blonde hair and the perfect body. You know the type, super model good looks, and not an ounce of fat on her. Jess is five-foot five with cheekbone length black hair that always looks perfectly tousled, with a different color streaked through it every week. They both have the most expressive eyes. Jess’ are crystal blue and looking at them is like looking into the depths of the deepest ocean, while Mickey’s are light gray and look like they know what you are thinking. They know just about everybody and fit in just about anywhere. So why do they hang out with me?

Honestly, I have no idea. Like I said, I don’t fit in anywhere. You would think that having popular friends would naturally make you popular.

Wrong.
               
When people see my friends they don’t see me, it’s almost as if I’m not even there.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind blending in; it’s just that I would like to be noticed every now and then. I guess I just want to know that I’m special to someone—anyone, besides my dad.


Morning is my favorite time of day; it is when I feel most connected to the world, when I am most creative and most thoughtful. That’s when I do my artwork. I can just lose myself in the moment and really feel the world come alive around me, it is like I feel the world waking up, and it makes my spirit sing. I know what you are thinking—I thought you were normal? I am honest; it’s just that I feel more connected to the world than I do to people. Not like I don’t want to connect with people, I just don’t. The only people I am connected to are my two best friends and my dad.

There I was sitting alone under my favorite tree, sketching when I felt someone staring at me. This was a new feeling for me, because no one ever stared at me, they were usually staring at Jess or Mickey. I looked up and saw the most gorgeous guy I had ever seen staring at me. I immediately looked around, trying to find who he was staring at, because there was no possible way he was staring at me, when he smiled and sent my heart soaring. It felt like his eyes could see into my soul and it made me quiver with excitement. He looked like a bad boy, dressed in all black the perfect contrast to his smooth olive skin, black spikey hair, and muscles that teased under his skin tight t-shirt. I stared back at him with my mouth agape when he winked at me and sending a flush of heat to my face. I looked down at my sketchbook to try and distract myself from his grandeur; but couldn’t resist the temptation of such a fine specimen, but when I looked back up, he was gone.

My face fell with disappointment and I began desperately scanning the crowd for him. Where did he go? Who was he? Why was he staring at me? I kept looking for him, but with no luck. I leaned around the tree to see if he was there, maybe he found who he was looking for and he was never really staring at me. I turned back around, put my head against the tree and let out a sigh of rejection, when I heard a sultry chuckle next to me. I opened my eyes and saw that he was now sitting next to me—and that he was even more stunning up close.

“Oh, sorry, I didn’t mean to laugh, but you look like you just lost your puppy.”

I stared at him dumbfounded, was this guy really talking to me? Oh.My.Gosh. I am totally staring! He probably thinks that I am some sort of mute. I closed my mouth and shook myself as a coy smile spread across his face, giving his resplendent jade green eyes a mischievous look.

“Wow, that’s beautiful!” he said as he pointed at my sketch.

He made me so flustered that I completely forgot what I was drawing. I looked down at it and saw that it was the same scene that I had been sketching for the last couple of weeks, a lake completely surrounded by trees. I don’t know why, but I just couldn’t get that lake out of my head.

“Oh, thanks.” I replied shyly. I normally didn’t let people look at my sketches. They were my private thoughts, but I guess it’s too late now.

“Have you been there before?” he asked.

“No, I haven’t, but it feels…..familiar, you know? Like de ja vu.” I don’t know why I just said that, but now he’s probably going to think that I am unstable or something. But for some reason I couldn’t stop myself. I can’t explain it, but I felt comfortable around him, almost like I knew him. Which was weird because there was no way that I knew a guy this hot.

“Well if that place is as beautiful as you drew it, I would love to go.” He said sincerely as he smiled at me.

Butterflies formed in my stomach as I took in his face. He had a strong jaw and smooth skin that looked like god himself carved it and when he smiled his eyes danced like lights reflecting on the water. I felt a little awkward and had to look away from him before I totally melted.

“By the way, my name’s Jasper.” He said grinning, extending his hand to me.

“Jo, nice to meet you.” I said taking his hand with a smile. The minute I touched his hand I felt like I was shocked and what felt like electricity traveled up my arm. Just as the sensation traveled to my head everything got fuzzy, and I felt like I had been thrown into a vortex.

When the fuzziness cleared I realized, I was no longer sitting under my favorite tree, but instead I was at a beautiful lake. The lake went on for miles, I know there was no way I could swim across it and all around it were hills of evergreen trees that looked like they had been there since the beginning of time. As my eyes spanned across the lake I saw that there was a small cabin tucked away in the evergreens on the south side of the lake. The cabin looked small; it had one square window in the front and to the right of the door. To my left I could see a wooden dock that stretched out into the deep end of the lake. You know those docks that you see at summer camp with kids running and jumping off them. And right in front of me was a boy. I couldn’t get a good look at him, but I got the sense that he couldn’t see me or hear me. It was like watching a movie from the inside, I moved closer to him trying to see over his shoulder.

Then just as fast as it began, I was back under the tree, only I was lying on the ground and Jasper was nowhere to be seen. I could hear Mickey and Jess calling my name worriedly. I was too afraid to open my eyes and I knew that for once in my life, I was being noticed. Only I didn’t want to be. I just wanted to lie there and be alone, and figure out what the hell had happened.

“Jo!  Jo are you all right? What happened?” Jess asked shaking me.

“Uh.” I moaned as I opened my eyes and tried to sit up. Bad idea. My head hurt so bad I thought it was going to explode. I immediately fell back to the ground and grabbed my head. “I don’t know what happened.” I moaned weakly, closing my eyes again, wishing I could disappear. “Where is he?” I winced.

“Who are you talking about Jo?” Mickey asked, looking a little puzzled.

“Jasper—the guy I was just talking to.” I stated confused.

“Jo there was no one under the tree with you. One minute you were sitting there drawing as usual and the next minute you were on the ground.” Mickey stated with concern.

“But I wasn’t alone. He was sitting right there.” I said pointing to the spot where Mickey was crouching.

“Maybe we should get the nurse?” Jess suggested with concern. I looked between Mickey and Jess and noticed something in their eyes. Was it fear or excitement?  Why do they look so freaked out?

“No, I’m fine.” I lied placing as much bravado in my voice as I could, as I slowly got to my feet, Jess had to grab my elbow to help stabilize me. “But you had to have seen him. He was right there!” I stated, looking between Jess and Mickey.

Mickey grabbed my stuff as Jess kept her hand on my elbow; I was still a little unsteady. I know without Jess holding onto me I would have eaten dirt. Everyone moved out of the way. I looked at the crowd around me, wondering what everyone thought of me now. They were all murmuring and staring as if I was some kind of freak. Just as we were about halfway through the crowd, I saw him. He was in the back of the crowd, looking at me. No wait, he was looking at Mickey. I looked back and forth from Mickey to him, and it looked like they were having a quiet conversation, despite not being near each other or speaking. But I could tell they were communicating. I was getting a worried, yet angry vibe from Mickey. What the hell was going on?

 “Mickey, who are you looking at?” I asked, putting my face directly in front of her, it was as if she was looking through me, not at me.

“No one.” She said focusing her eyes on me.

I know she was lying to me, but I decided not to push the subject, for now.

We were heading to the nurses office when the bell rang, signaling the beginning of school.

“Go ahead Mickey, I can take Jo to the nurse. You can’t be late for Chemistry again; Mr. Salazar will kick you out.” Jess said, as she grabbed my bag from Mickey.

“I’m not going to the nurse.” I said firmly as I stopped moving.

“Don’t be silly Jo. You passed out back there and you look really pale.” Jess said in a motherly tone.

“Honestly Jess, I’m fine. Besides, I have a paper due in English-Lit, and Mr. Trivizo doesn’t accept any late work,” I said assuringly. My head was still killing me, but right now I just wanted to try and make sense of what happened.

“Are you sure you won’t let the nurse take a look at you?” Jess asked, with a touch of concern in her eyes.

“I promise, I’m fine. You could walk me to class, just to be sure.” I said.

“Fine, but if you still look this pale after class, I’m taking you straight to the nurse.” Jess said firmly.

“I just need to sit for a bit. And I promise if I’m not better after class I will go to the nurse myself.” I lied as we walked to Mr. Trivizo’s English-Lit class. There was no way I was going to the nurse. What was I going to tell her, that I teleported to another place? Hell, I didn’t even know what happened. All I know is that it had something to do with Jasper. I don’t care what Mickey said, I know she saw him there. He was in the crowd and they were definitely communicating.
               
I took my usual seat in the back of the class where I usually blended in; only today it didn’t seem to be working. Everyone was looking at me and talking about me as if I wasn’t even there. I just put my head down and tried to block everyone out. “I know I wanted to get noticed, but not for being some kind of freak.” I muttered to no one.
               
Mr. Trivizo was rambling on and on about the usual boring stuff, so I decided to use the time to try and remember what I saw at the lake. I closed my eyes and tried to focus on the lake. I started by focusing on the water—on the fact that it was almost blue, like no other lake I have ever seen. The more I concentrated on the water the more I swore I could have heard the water lapping against the shore. Then I realized I was there again, and this time I was determined to figure out exactly where there was. It looked like I was at the same spot I was the first time, only this time the boy wasn’t there, and this time I could see two wooden paddle boats tied to the dock. I looked to the south of the lake towards the little cabin when I saw them—a pair of jade green eyes floating just in front of the cabin. I gasped and jumped in my chair. The entire class started laughing and staring at me—again!

“Ms. Hannigan, are you all right?” Mr. Trivizo asked as he approached my desk.

“I’m fine Mr. Trivizo. I just fell asleep for a second.” I swallowed hard and the class chuckled.

“I’m glad to see that my class is so conducive to your sleeping habits, now Ms. Hannigan if you think that you can keep yourself from sleeping for the next fifteen minutes, I will continue my lesson,” he said as he walked back to the front of the class. I slouched down as far as I could in my seat, hoping that the desk would help shield me from my embarrassment.
               
The rest of class passed without further incident and I made sure that I was the last one out of class. I threw an apology as I practically ran out the door. There was no way that I was sticking around school. Now that everyone was noticing me, I wanted nothing more than to disappear. So, I walked straight to my car. When I got there Jess and Mickey were standing there having what looked like a heated discussion. As soon as they saw me they stopped arguing and made a bee line straight for me.

“What are you guys doing here?”

“Let’s just say the whole school is talking.” Mickey said playfully.

“Oh great.” I whispered as I placed my forehead against my multi-colored, 1967 Stingray Corvette. My dad and I were fixing it up. Right now it was a piece of junk, but it was still my piece of junk.

“Why don’t you tell us what happened.” Jess interrupted as she smiled at me and gave Mickey a sideways glance.

“I—I fell asleep.” I lied. I hate lying, but there is no way that they would believe what happened, heck I don’t even know what happened. “I had a nightmare. I dreamed that I fell off a cliff.” Jess looked at Mickey and then back at me.

“Maybe you should go home and lie down?” Jess suggested as she opened my car door.

“Yeah, I think I will.” I said, getting into my car. “Thanks for not bailing on me after everything that’s happened today.”

“Look at the bright side—at least people are noticing you.” Mickey said trying, to make me laugh.

“Yeah right.” I said as I closed the door and started my car.

As soon as I got home I went straight upstairs and plopped down on my bed. What the hell was happening to me? That was no dream. Maybe if I just relaxed, it would come to me, or maybe I would just be able to forget about it. I doubted that I could forget, but it was worth a try, right? I went to the bathroom and splashed cold water on my face. I almost jumped when I saw my reflection in the mirror. I looked like hell and as pale as death. I decided it was best if I just go lie down and try to get some rest.

It didn’t take long before I was sound asleep. I don’t know how long I was asleep before the dream started. I was in a forest and I was walking along a dirt path enjoying the beauty of the place, when I saw the same jade eyes appear ahead of me on the trail. I knew those eyes and who they belonged to, the same ones that appeared to me during my English-Lit class. I stopped dead in my tracks, afraid to move. “Show yourself!” Glad that I sounded way more confident than I felt, my heart was practically in my throat.

“Show yourself. I know it’s you.” I yelled with a bit of irritation in my voice.
               
Then right before my eyes, Jasper appeared.

“Nice to see you too.” He stated just as he appeared, crossing his arms.

“Excuse me if I’m not exactly excited to see you. Last time I saw you I ended up passed out under a tree.” I crossed my arms too and gave him my most baleful look.

“You know, you’re kind of cute when your angry—kitten like.” He grinned.

“Ha Ha, I want answers!” I demanded.

“Answers to what exactly?” he teased.

“Where are we? Is this a dream? If it’s not a dream, then what is it? And exactly who the hell are you?” I rushed everything out in one breath. I was afraid that he would disappear on me again and so would this place.

“Whoa—slow down.” He smiled putting his hands up in surrender. “We will get to all of that.”

“Look, just tell me what the hell this is!” I demanded with annoyance in my voice. Man he was really getting on my nerves.

“A vision.” he stated simply.

 “A vision of what?” I asked.

“A vision of the past, present or future, now all you have to do is figure out which this is.”

“And how am I supposed to do that exactly?” I asked.

“All you have to do is look and walk around, it will come to you. Feel it—here.” He said assuringly, placing his hand just over my heart, not quite touching me. I could feel energy radiating from him. He quickly moved his hand back to his side. “You see, I can only enter your visions when you are in one and I know what you know about the vision.” He said honestly, looking into my eyes.

My heart skipped a beat and I began to get this weird feeling in the pit of my stomach. No I wasn’t queasy, it was a feeling of calm, a feeling of complete sureness; like I should believe what Jasper was telling me. I had to force myself to look away from him, his eyes had me in a trance; I think I could stare at his eyes all day.

“Okay, let’s say that I believe all that you said. You still haven’t told me who you are.” I said a little breathless.

“That doesn’t matter right now. We can talk about that later. Right now let’s just focus on the vision. I promise I will let you interrogate me later.” He picked up his pace and continued to walk along the path.

“But what am I looking for?” I implored running to keep up with the pace set by his long legs.

“Anything—everything. Who’s here, what time of day it is, your feelings. No detail is too small.” We broke through the trees and I realized that we had arrived at the lake. It took a minute to get my bearings, but once I did, I instantly realized we were on the other side of the lake. I immediately stopped walking, my eyes scanning the surrounding area, when they fell upon this huge mansion. It was a two story reddish-brown brick house with ivy growing along most of the roof and part of the front of the house. It had a ton of windows; I counted at least twenty and it had two large chimneys that I could see. Directly in the center of the house was a two-sided stone staircase that led to an arched doorway. The door was not visible through the arch, but rather it appeared to be a tunnel.

The more I looked at the house, the more I felt that I knew this place, but that’s impossible, how can I know this place when I could tell that this place existed in another time. Yet even as I thought it, my gut was telling me that I knew his place. 

“Earth to Jo!” Jasper said snapping his fingers in my face.

“I know this place.” I said as more of a question. 

“Where is it?”

“I don’t know—I mean I can’t remember.” I was disappointed in myself. Why couldn’t I remember? I closed my eyes and when I opened them again I realized that I was back in my room. Great—I lost the vision and my connection to Jasper. I still had no idea who he was. I rolled over, punched my bed and screamed into my pillow. “AWWWW!!!”

“Whoa, take it easy. What did that pillow ever do to you?” he asked as he leaned against my desk, with a smile that made his eyes fill with joy and laughter.
               
I stopped moving and screaming, he’s here, I didn’t lose him. I rolled over and tried to sit up. And immediately regretted it, I was suddenly faint and nauseous. I put my head between my legs and took a couple deep breaths, Jasper was instantly on the floor in front of me.

“Look at me.” It wasn’t a command, but more of a request. I looked up just enough to look into his eyes and warmth instantly spread throughout my body. Whoa. The nausea and light headedness were gone.
“Now sit up slowly and point me to your kitchen.”

“It’s downstairs and to your right.” I answered.

“I’m going to get you some water and something to eat. I will be right back. Please just stay on the bed. If you start feeling light headed again just lie down.” He was back before I even had a minute to think about moving, jeez who was this guy really?

“Here—take this,” he handed me an aspirin and a bottle of water, “now eat this.” He encouraged as he handed me an apple.
               
I immediately took the aspirin and downed the entire bottle of water. I didn’t realize I was thirsty, I took the apple, but I just stared at it.

“Visions take a lot out of you. You use a lot of your energy—power while you are in a vision. The aspirin is for the headache because trust me if your head doesn’t hurt now it will.” He smiled encouragingly. It was like he knew what I was going to ask him before I was even able to form the question in my mind.

“Visions are a bit overwhelming; it is a lot for your mind to handle all at once because not only does your body have to sustain you in this time, but it has to sustain you in another as well. You can think of it as the equivalent to doing nothing but taking the SAT’s all day. That is the reason for the aspirin and the longer you are in a vision the more this will increase. Fortunately the headaches will subside with practice. The water will help hydrate you because to your body a vision is like running a marathon. And the apple is to help replace some of the energy you expended. Now eat.” He urged, not quite looking at me, but I could see the honesty of what he said all over his face.
               
I took a bite of the apple, not sure of what else to do. This was all too weird, too sudden. I had about one hundred questions swirling in my head and with every bite I took I became more confused. I felt so lost. Visions—I had visions. But how—why? Why now? What does all this mean? Does my dad know?

“Come on spill, I can see that you have questions. It’s written all over your face.” He said interrupting my psycho-babble.

I looked at him and before I knew it I was spilling my guts.

“Who are you? And no more crap.” I looked straight at him. He grabbed my desk chair, placed it directly across from me and sat down.

“That’s an easy one. I’m Jasper.” He said grinning playfully.

Oh. My. Gosh. I so wanted to choke this guy. Was he always like this or was he just trying to piss me off. I think he could see that I wanted to choke him because he quickly put his hands up in surrender.

“Okay, okay. I can see that this is not the time to joke around. I’m sorry. To answer your question, I am your guide.” He smiled at me and I think my heart jumped.

“My what?”

“Your guide. Your magical guide to be correct. I was sent here to help guide you to the truth of who you are.” He almost looked sad as he looked at me.

“Who am I?” I implored, but I was almost scared to find out. What if it turned out I was bad.

“You belong to one of the most powerful Wiccan families the world has ever known. Every daughter born into the Hannigan family has been blessed by magic.”

“Magic?!” No freaking way! I almost smiled to myself. I so wanted this to be true. But there was no way it could be true, things just didn’t go that good for me.

“Yes, magic.” He grinned.

“If I’m magical, then how come I didn’t even know?”

“It’s simple, not everyone born into a magical family actually develops powers. Many are born to be powerless, but those that do have powers generally show signs from the ages of fifteen to sixteen, at which point a Guide is assigned.” Jasper explained.
               
“Uh, so do I have other powers?”
               
“You should. You see all the Hannigan daughters were blessed with three powers.”
               
“Three?” I said shocked. “What are they?”

“That’s the tricky part; no Hannigan daughter ever had the same powers as another. As of right now we know you have visions, now we just have to wait for the others to develop.”

 “What if they don’t?”

“Don’t what?” Jasper asked.

“What if my other powers don’t develop?” I asked quietly.

“They will. Trust me.”

“I wish I could be as confident as you. But, seriously—what if they don’t?” Even though I asked the question I was afraid of the answer. What if it turned out I was the anomaly in my family?

“I know because I feel your powers. And they grow stronger every day. Soon your other powers will present themselves. But until they do—maybe we should focus on helping you to control and understand the one you’ve got.” He smiled at me and I instantly felt all my stress and worries melt away. My stomach started doing back flips, what in the world was wrong with me? I think I must still be light headed, but I felt fine a second ago—until he smiled at me.

“So how do we do that?” I asked as I regained my composure.

“The first step to controlling your visions is understanding them. With every vision there is something to learn. You see, every vision is basically trying to tell you something. And it’s your job to figure it out—to solve the riddle.”

“So you’re telling me that every vision carries a message?” I asked as I chuckled. “I hate puzzles.” At that statement Jasper chuckled too, lightening the mood.

“That’s where I come in.” Jasper said smiling. “Now, at first your visions will seem uncontrollable. They will come when you least expect them and may seem completely random. And unfortunately when you are new to receiving visions they will often come at times when your emotions are at an extreme high or low. Learning to control your emotions is one of the best ways to control your visions.”

“Okay so how exactly do I do that?”

“Meditation.” Jasper stated simply. I just stared at Jasper, completely unsure how to reply to that.

“I don’t know the first thing about meditation.”

“Don’t worry, I will teach you that too. But first why don’t we try to figure out what your visions were trying to tell you?” Jasper suggested.

I just nodded.

We had been talking since I had my last vision. I had no idea how much time had passed. That was the last thing on my mind. I left school early today, but I never even bothered to check the time. I tried to think about all the visions I had. It was really hard to believe that I had three that day. Then again it was also hard to believe that only just yesterday I thought I was perfectly normal, talk about irony huh?!

I happened to glance at the clock sitting on my night stand. “Oh crap, it’s already five o’clock!” I stood up and ran to the window. Jumping up so fast that I almost knocked Jasper out of his chair. “My dad should be home any minute!” I looked down the street. I lived on a cul-de-sac and our house sat directly at the top of it, so it was easy to see any cars coming up the street. “Make that any second!” I turned and looked at Jasper and then he vanished.

It happened so fast I almost missed it. I turned to tell him he needed to leave because there was no way I wanted to explain a boy being in my bedroom, when he literally disappeared. It was weird to watch, his body left first just leaving a pair of floating jade eyes, where he stood—then they blinked and were gone.

“Jo! I’m home!” my dad yelled as he entered the through the garage.

“Hi dad, how was your day?” I said as I calmly walked down stairs, trying not to seem nervous. I was afraid my dad could tell I was guilty of something just by the way I walked. I didn’t normally hide things from my dad, but I really didn’t think my dad would understand all that was going on with me. Hell, I didn’t even understand all that was going on with me. I will tell him when I have a better grasp on everything. Maybe then things won’t seem so weird to me and I’ll know how to tell him.

“What’s going on JoJo?” My dad asked as we walked into the living room.

“Oh, nothing, just thinking about school stuff.” I lied, looking away from my dad.

“Anything you want to talk to me about? I promise I will listen objectively and if it has something to do with a boy, I promise I won’t get my gun and shoot him—yet anyway.” He said sarcastically.

“No, dad, it’s not a boy! Just homework and stuff.” I chuckled.

“Ok, if you say so. Well if you want to talk just let me know, you know that I am always here for you, right?” He looked at me intently, searching my eyes to make sure that I really was ok. I was determined not to avert my eyes, but to look back into his and hope that he saw nothing to give him concern.

“I know I can talk to you dad, but really its nothing.” I said looking at him, avoiding his eyes.

“I’m going to go take a shower, and then we can get ready for dinner.” He said kissing me on the top of my head as he passed me on the way to his room.

That’s the thing, when my dad says I can talk to him, he’s not kidding. And normally I would and I do. Man, I need to figure out whatever this is and quick; I can’t stand not telling my dad. I think he knows something is going on with me and it’s just like my dad not to pressure me into telling him. He knows that if I’m not talking to him, that I have my reasons and when I am ready to talk I will and he’ll be there ready to listen and he won’t question me. My dad is awesome, he’s definitely not the typical dad and he always puts me first. I’m sure it has something to do with the fact that my mom died during childbirth, but I can’t say for sure. All I can say is that I don’t like lying to him, and if I can’t figure this out soon I am going to have to lock myself in my room. Which is so not like me, normally I spend my nights with my dad. First we prepare dinner together, and then we retire to the living room where we watch our favorite shows or whatever sport is on. Not to mention the fact that my dad would never allow me to lock myself away. Home was the one place I didn’t feel like I just blended in.

Home was my sanctuary and my dad is my best friend. We are literally all each other have. After my mom passed away my dad never re-married, in fact he’s never even dated. Honestly, I think he is still in love with my mom. He talks about her as if she is still alive; he’s always saying things like wait until your mom hears about this. It’s weird, but I just go with it because I don’t want to hurt his feelings, plus it makes him happy. He tells me stories about her every day, so I feel like I know her too. It is hard to explain, but even though I never met my mom, I feel this connection with her—like she is watching over me. No—more like she is with me. My dad says I look a lot like her, but I don’t see the resemblance. I am average—she was beautiful, breathtaking, with the greenest eyes that pierced right to your soul; even in pictures, cheekbones like mine, but long flowing golden blonde hair. Her smile was big and contagious and could light the whole room up.

My dad on the other hand is very tall, six foot three to be exact; he has brown wavy hair that he keeps short, but not military short, he likes to leave a little on top to show off his wavy hair. I share my weird eyes with my dad, a different color every day and it’s not always the prettiest. My dad has rugged good looks; he has naturally tan flawless skin with just a touch of freckles on his cheekbones, he is lean but muscular and he has barely there dimples that only show when his whole face smiles. Whenever we go out women are always ogling him, and he doesn’t even notice.


“So what do you want to do for dinner tonight?” my dad asked walking into the kitchen.

“I was thinking Italian.” Italian was my favorite, to eat and to cook.

“Sounds good to me, anything specific?”

“Maybe we could make chicken fettuccine alfredo.” I suggested.

“Great, I will start on the chicken if you want to get started on the pasta?” my dad replied, grabbing the chicken out of the freezer and we got to work on cooking dinner. And just like my dad, he didn’t question me again. We ate our dinner in the living room and watched the new Fast Five movie.
               
Before I went to bed that night I decided to try some breathing exercises—you know to calm my nerves. I figured I might as well get a jump start on trying to control my emotions. No need to wait for Jasper, besides how hard could meditation be? I put my favorite CD in the CD player—Pride and Prejudice—the musical score. And I sat crisscross on my bed and tried to center myself—whatever that meant. I tried to clear my head of all thought, but all I managed to do was think of was how stupid I probably looked. Now all I need to do is start saying ohm! I almost laughed at myself.
               
“Okay Jo! This is serious. Erase your mind!” I whispered to myself as I closed my eyes and tried to block out the world. “Erase your mind.” I soothed.
               
It was so not working. I peeked open one eye and looked at the clock, it was only ten thirty. Ugh! I just had to keep trying. “You can do this.” I encouraged. But the more I tried to clear my mind, the more thoughts seemed to swirl in my head. There were so many thoughts swirling around I thought I was going to give myself motion sickness! I closed my eyes and took a couple of deep breaths trying to make this work, trying and failing.
               
“Ohm, ohm.” Jasper said leaning against my dresser. My eyes flew open at that sound of Jasper’s voice, not to mention I almost peed my pants.
               
“You scared the crap out of me! You have to stop doing that!” I stated throwing a pillow at him. Jasper quickly recovered and tossed the pillow back. Well, so much for that idea, oh well, it wasn’t working anyway. It just made me want to laugh.
               
“Sorry, but I could sense that you were alone, so I thought now might be a good time to stop in so we could talk more.” He grabbed my desk chair and plopped in it.
               
“Are you serious? Can’t this wait until tomorrow? I was trying to forget about all of this and get some sleep.”
               
“Well I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you can’t forget. It’s more important for you to remember and dig deeper into those thoughts.” Jasper urged.
               
“Yeah well I need sleep! And what if I don’t care about any of this?” Even though I said the words I knew they weren’t true. There was nothing I wanted more than to believe in this. To believe that I was magical and that I was special.
               
“You don’t believe that and you know it!” countered Jasper.
               
“Yeah well it doesn’t change the fact that I’m no closer to figuring all this out than I am to inventing the next acne miracle cream!” suddenly I realized that I was on my feet and I was speaking a little louder than I meant to.
               
“That’s why I came back. To help you.”
               
I plopped down on my bed and threw myself back. Why couldn’t I just make sense of all of this?
               
“Hey, you said that you could sense I was alone. What do you mean by sense?” I was suddenly sitting up again, curious.
               
“Guides have a sixth sense when it comes to their neophytes.”
               
“Neo—what’s?”
               
“It basically means a person who is new to magic—new to their powers.”
               
“Okay—what kind of sixth sense?”
               
“Well, like I said before I can sense when you’re alone or when you’re having a vision. But I can also sense your general mood and feelings and I can sense when you have been hurt. It’s hard to explain, but all I have to do is concentrate on you and I can feel you, then I can find you. It is just a little something to help us angels protect and guide our neophytes.” He looked at the floor nervously.
               
“Makes sense to me.” I could feel myself blush. “I always thought that I could feel my mom’s presence even though she’s dead. So why couldn’t a person—“I was going to say why couldn’t a person sense another person when Jasper interrupted me.
               
“An angel.” He whispered.
               
“Who is an angel? I ain’t dead yet!”
               
“I am.” Jasper whispered looking at me shyly.

“An angel?! But where are your wings?”
               
“Yes, an Angel. And Angels don’t have wings in the physical sense. When a person of magical descent passes on they may be given the choice to return to earth to help guide fellow magical beings—or neophytes; or to move on to the other side. If that person chooses to return to earth he is given the gift of immortality and the ability to make themselves appear before anyone they choose.”
               
“Wow!” That was all I could say. I was such a dork. I can’t believe this guy just told you he was an angel and all you can say is wow.
               
“I know—kinda hard to grasp huh?!”
               
“You could say that. So, if you don’t mind me asking—how long have you been a—an angel?” I started looking down at my hands trying not to look at him. “I understand if you don’t want to tell me.” I quickly added to give him a way out if he wanted one.
               
“No, it’s okay. I want you to know me—I need you to know me and trust me.” He placed his hand under my chin and forced me to look into his eyes. I could feel that I could trust him, that I needed to trust him. There was just something right about that and I could sense it all through my body.
               
“I trust you.” I said softly, looking deep into his eyes.

“Good. Then take my hand.” He said as he stood up and placed his hand out in front of me palm up. I hesitated at first. I looked at his palm then looked into his eyes and saw nothing but trust and hope, without another word I grabbed his hand.

2 comments:

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    1. Thanks Michelle! We will have to wait and see about chapter 2. :) So glad you are interested!!! You have no idea what this means to me.

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