At 4:43 AM, I woke up, clad in sweat across my forehead. Nightmares often troubled me. I knew that sleep would elude me for the rest of the night, so there was no point in staying up anymore. After a quick yet refreshing shower, I took longer to get dressed and to tie my hair back in a bun. No point in being hasty this early in the morning.
It had been a year since I arrived in Moonlight Falls, and since then, I had adapted, though it had not been easy. I had been right to suspect that humans distrusted Supernatural beings, even though we were disguised. It seemed that somehow, we gave off an aura that was impossible to hide. But certain people seemed to like it. For example, the time I had strolled by a old lady’s home, she had beckoned me closer, inviting me into her home, and when she found out I was homeless, offered to put me up for the night. That became a permanent arrangement, and before I could even blink, I was signed up at the local high school.
Imagine me, an unsocial fairy, trapped inside the palace of where everything social went on inside. Where kids more than just fail exams and throw each other with paper. Where they connected. Where they became friends. Where they had fun.
I never truly had a friend. Not even my parents were known for striking up a conversation or for doing something crazy every so often. No, they hid their ancient quirky natures well, and that’s how they became, yet I loved them dearly even though they never expressed their love as I would have wished them to. My mother was slightly warmer to me, hugging me whenever I injured myself, or when I started crying because I was unhappy.
Alas, the only friend I now had was the old lady I lived with, Miss Elana Gibbons. It still remained a mystery whether or not I had a aura that influenced her to do my bidding. I hoped not.
She was quite an interesting individual, extremely nice, yet secretive about her history and her experiences in life. Could it be some kind of bad experience that left her scarred for life, just like my experience? I had no idea, and as much as I wanted to find out, I wasn’t prepared to abuse her hospitality just yet. If an old lady would allow me to redecorate an entire room just for myself, than I didn’t question anything about her.
My room was my sanctuary, the only place I could be myself when I couldn’t go outside and explore the forests. There were times that my fairy magic became too much to bear, and I had to let the fairy wings sprout, and my skin turn a different shade. Every time I transformed, the color of my pale skin would change. Sometimes it was purple, other times it was green. to be honest, I found the fairy species to be incredibly confusing. It was frustrating not to have someone around to explain to me what everything meant, or someone to share my frustrations.
The clock started to lean towards 6 AM. An acceptable time to get up, according to miss Gibbons. She awoke much earlier than that to take care of her plants, but hated it whenever someone else was up before her.
With my school bag all packed for the day ahead, I sneaked downstairs, testing just how sensitive the old lady’s ears were. She swore that she could hear a snail chomping at her beloved plants while she was cooking in the kitchen. An outlandish accusation, and something that I was dying to test.
The test was an instant failure, as Miss Gibbons didn’t even acknowledge my presence, so immersed in the gardening channel. It was her favorite.
“Miss Gibbons?” I asked lightly, taking baby steps towards her. I cleared my throat. “Miss Gibbons?”
The old lady jumped in her chair. “Oh, my dear. You shouldn’t sneak up on an old woman like that. My heart isn’t like it used to be! And when will you ever start calling me Elana?”
“I’ll have to keep that in mind, miss,” chuckling, I moved to the cupboard in the room to pick up some stationery I left behind the day before. Any chance I got, I sketched art pieces or wrote magnificent tales, imagining a life better than the one I was living. Living in a dream world was better than facing reality. “I don’t think I’ll ever call you that. I was taught to uphold respect to senior members.”
Her eyes narrowed to slits. “Is that some smart way of saying I’m an old granny?”
My eyes were wide, the perfect picture of innocence. “I thought I already made that clear?”
Miss Gibbons shook her head, chuckling alongside me. “Ah, dear, you make me smile. But why are you up so early? Girls of your age should sleep till at least five minutes before school starts and rush just to make it to school before the day hasn’t completely passed by.”
“I…I couldn’t sleep. The nightmares are starting to get worse.”
Miss Gibbons looked thoughtful, and suddenly, she clucked her tongue, getting up from the chair in a manner that could be perceived as fast, for an old person. “I have just the medicine for that.”
I followed her towards to kitchen, preparing to grab whatever thing she was going to force down my throat away from her. “Please, I don’t want to swallow a fistful of prescription medicine. My body is messed up as it is.”
“Oh, this lady does not believe in trusting in the doctors of today. I fair well enough without them, thank you very much.”
With one eyebrow raised and observing her actions, I took a seat at the table. All around the paled wooden table were mismatching chairs. Miss Gibbons believed herself to old to worry about trivial things such as matching furniture. Her carefree nature was something I loved, and kept life interesting around her house. It was a miracle when the curtains matched the sofa. “So what medicine are you referring to?”
She smiled broadly. “Pancakes.”
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. “Seriously? That’s your great secret?”
“Oh my word…”
Her serene laugh filled the room, and she moved towards the refrigerator, taking out a couple of eggs, the milk carton and a container which I presumed housed the butter. “The most basic things in life can sometimes have the greatest effect.”
After thanking Miss Gibbons for the lovely breakfast, I hightailed it out of there and got to school five minutes before the bell was supposed to ring. This way I could avoid random students who wanted to strike up a conversation over how nice the weather was for a change, or what we had the first period of the day. The people around here never seemed to stray past their disorganized antics.
But that morning, things were much different than I expected. There’s usually a straggler that dared to speak to me while I was sitting alone on the bench, but this morning, there was no one. All around me, teenagers were in a tizz, sharing the latest gossip. It seemed to be a big deal to everyone. That meant only one thing: There was a new kid in town.
When I arrived at school, many cliques fought for my attention, and passed on invites to join their groups. I declined them all, and after awhile, the strange vibe I carried around like a protective blanket scared them away. I was finally left alone, the way I preferred to live.
But the new kid that arrived didn’t seem to share the same attitude I did. This person seemed to thrive in their company. Whatever. The excitement would die down, and she would be forgotten. Everything would return to normal eventually.
A flash of red hair rushed past where I took a seat, aiming for the back door of the school. So that was the new girl. “The door is locked!” I called to her. “It always has been, after the principal learned that that’s where learners sneaked in at night to pull a massive prank.”
“Oh…that sucks,” she idly scratched her neck, biting down hard on her lower lip. She looked quite embarrassed with herself. “The girls over there by the tree said I should go through there, that it’d be the easiest way to find the secretary’s office.”
I followed her gaze to the tree, where girls stood wearing extremely short pink skirts and furry boots, and tops that showed so much cleavage that it left nothing to the imagination. The bimbos, of course. They loved to screw around with the new people. It was a sort of initiation, if the new people ever decided to join their group. So far, no one had. “We all call them ‘The Bitches’, because…well, they’re bitches. Don’t mind them. Nobody does.”
She laughed, and extended her arm friendly. “My name’s Ximena, but I prefer that everyone call me Nina.”
I accepted her gesture graciously. “I’m Danique. I guess you could call me Danny, but I find it rather inappropriate.”
“How so?” she frowned.
“My parents used to call me that, and now that they’re gone… I’m sorry, I shouldn’t be sprouting out all my life’s problems to you. I’ll leave now.”
“No! It’s fine, truly. I have the reputation of being a good listener, or I used to…truth is, I never even knew my parents, so I’m kind of in the same boat as you. ”
“Hey, then we can be sad and cry together. A cry buddy, finally!” We both tried to contain the giggles, but they finally pushed through, and laughter erupted between us. I knew the stares of everyone would be on us. The weirdo talking to the popular one. What a contradiction.
The fun moment was ended when the bell rang, and Ximena had to run quickly to fill in forms about which classes she would be taking. “Thanks for your help, I had a nice time chatting with you!” she called over her shoulder. “Hopefully we’ll have classes together!”
“I hope so too…,” I sighed. It hit me a moment later that I felt comfortable around that girl. A little bit too comfortable for me. The only time I felt like that…used to be when I was with my parents, with fellow Supernaturals.
There was something magical about that girl, no doubt about it. Not the sad aura I carried, but something cheerful.
Was it possible…that she could be a fairy? Like me?
Was it possible that I wasn’t the only one of my kind left?