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Evermore

By:Alyson Noel

Acknowledgements

I couldn't have written this book without the infinite generosity and wisdom of the following people: Brian L. Weiss, M.D., and Christina Gikas, who showed me a past I never could've imagined; James Van Praagh, who taught me to look at the world in a Whole new way; my agent, Kate Schafer, who so deftly guides me along; my editor, Rose Hilliard, who handles my stories with such care; my copy editor for several books now, NaNa V Stoelzle, who spares me from all manner of grammatical embarrassment; and, as always, Sandy, the last of the Renaissance men!


Aura Color Chart


Red: Energy, strength, anger, sexuality, passion, fear, ego

Orange: Self-control, ambition, courage, thoughtfulness, lack of will, apathetic

Yellow: Optimistic, happy, intellectual, friendly, indecisive, easily led

Green: Peaceful, healing, compassion, deceitfulness, jealous

Blue: Spiritual, loyal, creative, sensitive, kind, moody

Violet: Highly spiritual, wisdom, intuition

Indigo: Benevolence, highly intuitive, seeker

Pink: Love, sincerity, friendship

Gray: Depression, sadness, exhaustion, low energy, skepticism

Brown: Greed, self-involvement, opinionated "

Black: Lacking energy, illness, imminent death

White: Perfect balance





One




"Guess who?"

Haven's warm, clammy palms press hard against my cheeks as the tarnished edge-of her silver skull ring leaves a smudge on my skin. And even though my eyes are covered and closed, I know that her dyed black hair is parted in the middle, her black vinyl corset is worn over a turtleneck (keeping in compliance with our school's dress-code policy), her brand-new, floorsweeping, black satin skirt already has a hole near the hem where she caught it with the toe of her Doc Martens boots, and her eyes appear gold but that's only because she's wearing yellow contacts.

I also know her dad isn't really away on «business» like he said, her mom's personal trainer's way more «personal» than "trainer," and her little brother broke her Evanescence CD but he's too afraid to tell her.

But I don't know any of this from spying or peeking or even being told. I know because I'm psychic.

"Hurry! Guess! The bell's gonna ring!" she says, her voice hoarse, raspy, like she smokes a pack a day, even though she only tried smoking once.

I stall, thinking of the last person she'd ever want to be mistaken for. "Is it Hilary Duff?"

"Ew. Guess again!" She presses tighter, having no idea that I don't have to see to know.

"Is it Mrs. Marilyn Manson?"

She laughs and lets go, licking her thumb and aiming for the tarnish tattoo she left on my cheek, but I raise my hand and beat her to it. Not because I'm grossed out by the thought of her saliva (I mean, I know she's healthy), but because I don't want her to touch me again. Touch is too revealing, too exhausting, so I try to avoid it at all costs.

She grabs the hood of my sweatshirt and flicks it off my head, then squints at my earbuds and asks, "What're you listening to?"

I reach inside the iPod pocket I've stitched into all of my hoodies, concealing those ubiquitous white cords from faculty view; then I hand it over and watch her eyes bug out when she says, "What the? I mean, can it be any louder? And who is that?" She dangles the iPod between us so we can both hear Sid Vicious screaming about anarchy in the UK. And the truth is, I don't know if Sid's for it or against it. I just know that he's almost loud enough to dull my overly heightened senses.

"Sex Pistols," I say, clicking it off and returning it to my secret compartment.

"I'm surprised you could even hear me." She smiles at the same time the bell rings.

But I just shrug. I don't need to listen to hear. Though it's not like I mention that. I just tell her I'll see her at lunch and head toward class, making my way across campus and cringing when I sense these two guys sneaking up behind her, stepping on the hem of her skirt, and almost making her fall. But when she turns and makes the sign of evil (okay, it's not really the sign of evil, it's just something she made up) and glares at them with her yellow eyes, they immediately back off and leave her alone. And I breathe a sigh of relief as I push into class, knowing it won't be long before the lingering energy of Haven's touch fades.

I head toward my seat in the back, avoiding the purse Stacia Miller has purposely placed in my path, while ignoring her daily serenade of «Looo-ser» she croons under her breath. Then I slide onto my chair, retrieve my book, notebook, and pen from my bag, insert my earpiece, pull my hood back over my head, drop my backpack on the empty seat beside me, and wait for Mr.Robins to show.

Mr. Robins is always late. Mostly because he likes to take a few nips from his small silver flask between classes. But that's only because his wife yells at him all the time, his daughter thinks he's a loser, and he pretty much hates his life. I learned all of that on my first day at this school, when my hand accidentally touched his as I gave him my transfer slip. So now, whenever I need to turn something in, I just leave it on the edge of his desk.

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