Here is part of Chapter 2 of my YA story from the point of view of Aaron. I was curious as to what was running through his head the first time he met Kat. I’ll post part 2, the first time he actually speaks to her later, probably next week.
Thursday – Part I
© 2008 Suzanne Lazear
It was Thursday. Just another boring day. Just another boring week. Life as a junior at Cactus Grove High School was just not that interesting. The two highlights of my day were lunch and painting. Painting was last period. Right now it was lunch.
“Have you seen the new girl yet?” My cousin Ashley asked this to no one in particular as the six of us walked to lunch together. The six of us always walked to lunch together. The plebian masses of CGHS referred to us as the Beautiful People.
If only they knew.
“She hot?” Randy asked the big question before I could.
“She’s from Los Angeles, she’s in my History class.” Ashley was a junior too. "I think she's in English too." She hadn't had that yet.
Heads turned as we passed. We were often imitated. Gossiped about. But seldom approached. It was as if the humans knew deep down they should stay away from us.
“That’s the girl with the cast, right?” Drew, Ashley’s brother, was practically bouncing as we walked. He was a freshman. “Bobby White was carrying her backpack.”
And I cared because?
It wasn’t that I didn’t like Bobby and his friends. I just didn’t care.
“So is she pretty?” Angie was very vain. Not that she had much in the way of competition. We were all quite beautiful. On the outside.
“She could be.” This was not meant cattily. Ash wasn’t like Angie.
We entered the cafeteria. A teeming cesspool of the sights and smells of teenhood. It was nearly as nauseating as the stench of whatever they were serving under the guise of lunch.
“What does that mean?” Ronny, Randy’s twin, blinked.
“She was in a car accident. Her mom died so she came to live with her dad here in Gilbert.” Ashley sounded as if she actually cared. But then she did. My cousin was nice. “Her name is Kat. She apparently already knows Addison Moore.”
Kat? What kind of name was that?
“So what does she look like?” I was curious. We stood in line and filled our trays with disgusting cafeteria food
“Not your type Aaron,” Ashley giggled.
Pity. That at least would be a brief amusement. Not that we dated humans.
“She looks like Snow White.”
“You know, pale skin, red lips, black hair.”
No, not my type. I liked blondes, preferably ones with large racks.
“Nice.” She was, however, Randy’s type. She was female.
“And,” Ashley’s voice lowered. “She has purple eyes.”
I nearly dropped my tray. “Fluere?” We didn’t have one of those at Cactus Grove. Wolves. Mages. Vampires. But no Fluere.
“I don’t know.” Ashley paid for her lunch. “She was on the other side of the room, with the Smart People. It was too hard to pick out her scent.”
“Whatever Ash.” Angie brushed past so she could pay for her food, cutting in front of me. Angie was in love with herself. She was also a fabulous actress. “Purple eyes mean Fluere. You said she had been in a car accident.”
Fluere weren’t born. They were made. In order to become Fluere you needed three things – to be human, to have inherited a sleeping gene, and to have that gene awakened by dying and coming back to life. You could tell them by their purple eyes, and their scent.
“There’ something about her,” Ashley defended.
Purple eyes were not exclusive to the Fluere.
“Maybe she’s just magic.” Why did I say that? Angie shot me a pained look.
“Magic, Bro?” Ronny snorted.
“I’m just saying that it’s possible.” It was. Also, the children of the Night World weren’t the only race that lurked among humans.
We all paid for our food and walked towards our usual table. It was always clear. For us. Those who sat at our table never sat there for long.
“There she is. She’s sitting with the Smart People.” Ashley nodded to a table not far from where Bobby White and the Wolves sat.
Sure enough, the Smart People had a new addition. These people weren’t just smart. I was easily as smart as them. They were ambitions. Driven. They were the top 1%. I just didn’t care to be Valedictorian. Much to my father’s disappointment. I had known all but Addy Moore and Mark Stalder since middle school.
“Oh God, she’s sitting with Mark.” Ronny’s voice was softly appalled. That could be a problem. There were the Dark Flurere. Which to us were the good guys. And the Bright Fluere. The bad guys. Mark’s best friend was one of the bad guys. And a pain in the ass.
If she was Fluere, odds were she was new. She probably had no idea what was going on. What was happening to her as her abilities developed. Or that the Nightworld even existed.
The last thing we wanted was for Mark to have first crack at a brand new Fluere. We loved the Fluere. As long as they weren’t armed with stakes, or burning down houses.
If that’s even what she was.
All six of us stared at her, quite rudely, as we walked past as we tried to figure out what she was in the crowded cafeteria.
She was quietly gossiping with the whole group, as if she’d always been a part of them.
“Oh my god, she’s bald.” Angie could project and I could tell by the look on the girl’s face that she heard.
The girl, Kat, wasn’t quite bald. But the black fuzz the covered her head was sparse. As I started at her, I realized why Ashley said she could be pretty. If that black hair was long…
Her shoulders were hunched in that way that tall girls did when they were self-conscious about their height. One arm was in a sling and there was indeed a cast on her leg. Her free arm was covered in a mass of fine scars. To me, they were like spider webs across her near-translucent skin. Could humans even see those scars?
I also got the Snow White reference now. She was incredibly pale. Vampiricly pale. But she didn’t look pallid. She looked like one of my mother’s fine porcelain dolls. Her lips were indeed red, without lipstick. In fact, unlike most girls, she wore no makeup other then mismatched base that inexpertly covered a nasty scar on her temple.
Also, unlike nearly every other girl at CGHS, including the Smart People, and the Wolves, she was not dressed up. She was wearing a t-shirt and torn jeans, like she was going to clean out the garage.
“What is she wearing?” Angie sneered.
“She is from California, Ange,” Ronny defended, as if that explained it all. Then again. He and his twin dressed like punk rockers. However, they did have their own Punk Band.
If the girl sat up straight, had some self-confidence and some nice clothes, and added just a hint of makeup she’d be beautiful. Ethereal. Even without long hair.
The Smart People noticed our gaze. But she, Kat, seemed equally intrigued. Not by us. But by me. I was used to female attention. Truly, she was far from the blonde Vampiric princesses that chased me, with their soft curves. She didn’t even look like she had breasts.
There truly was something about her. It had nothing to do with the confidence and charisma that drew humans to us.
I just couldn’t stop staring at her.
What was she like? Her shirt said something about Shakespeare and Poetry. She was also in Ash’s AP English Class. Did she like poetry? I liked to read and was fond of the classics. Right now I was reading a lot of things that were quite provocative. Like Swift, Hegel, and Conrad.
She probably liked Hemmingway, Austin, Dickens, and Bronte.
Then I caught a look at her fingers. They were ink stained. An artist. I was fond of art. Especially Impressionism.
What did she like to draw?
I caught her stare and held her gaze. She seemed surprised. Not only to be caught, but that I’d stare at her.
Arching an eyebrow, I smiled. What an interesting girl. Perhaps I’d amuse myself by figuring her out. Without another look, I continued on to our table with the rest of my group.
I heard Mark tell her to not even bother. That I was bad news. So what Bobby White. For some odd reason, the idea of the Wolves, especially Bobby made me angry. Why? I hadn’t even met the girl.
It took a lot to intrigue me. This new girl did. I still wasn’t sure why.
I continued to watch her as I ate.
“So what’s the verdict?” Ashley asked softly. “Fluere?”
“Freak,” Angie muttered. “Leave her to the Smart People and the Wolves.”
There seemed to be so much more to Kat...
If one just looked closer. Like I was doing now.
“What’s she like Ash?” Would she be in any of my afternoon classes? She hadn’t been in AP Physics. I tried to avoid most AP classes. They required work. Honors were filled with people who weren’t total idiots, but weren’t quite as driven.
Ashley shrugged. She looked just like my mom, petite, redheaded, graceful. “I didn’t talk to her, Aaron. I just listened to her talk to the Smart People before class, and what she said in class, of course.”
And that was?
“Her answers in class were thoughtful. She seems very smart, and quiet. Reserved. Shy even.” Ash was a little shy.
“Oh.” Drew was watching her intently as well. My little cousin was a bit off. “Maybe we should leave her to the Wolves.”
Again, something inside me didn’t like that comment – or the way Bobby White kept looking at her. But Drew had a point. Not everyone had what it took to run with Vampires. Most Wolves were far from shy and quiet, but they’d love and protect those who were. Especially Fluere.
Us on the other hand.
We’d eat someone like that alive. Figuratively, of course.
Was she really like that? Or was she just overwhelmed with a new school. I knew from experience that it was daunting.
“Actually I think she’d be a good fit for Ross. They could be ugly freaks together.”
I shot Angie a dark look.
“She’s not that bad Ange,” Randy interjected. “She just needs some hair. Maybe some fashion sense. I wouldn’t wish anyone on Ross.”
That Bright Fluere was ugly. And mean.
“I think she’s in my English class too,” Ashley added. “Give me a day or two and I’ll try to figure her out.” That meant watching and listening. Ash would probably not strike up a conversation with her.
Myself on the other hand…
Why was I so intrigued by this girl who was clearly not my type? At least she didn’t seem high maintenance. I was over high maintenance girls.
It would definitely be interesting to find out.
Perhaps today wouldn’t be so boring after all.