Chapter 1: The Vision
I could see everything and yet nothing at the same time. A breathtakingly beautiful family. Golden eyes. An empty room. The forest speeding by at an unimaginable pace. And then nothing again.
I woke to a start and leaned forward in my bed shaking. Not out of fear but from shock. My visions hadn’t been that vivid since . . . well, they hadn’t been like that for a long time. Sometimes I got short flashes - blurry images - but my visions rarely had sounds and moving pictures or even color.
Here’s the thing, I’m psychic. A seer, if you will. And that’s pretty much how I ended up in this whole mess.
I turned my head towards my digital alarm clock and realized that if I didn’t get up soon, I’d be late for my first day as a senior at Forks High School.
School. The word echoed emptily in my head. I dragged myself out of bed and got dressed. I walked downstairs and grabbed a granola bar. I’d eat it later. I made my way outside and walked up to my truck. My foster parents, Linda and Robert, had bought it for me as a welcome to Forks present.
The truck was a sort of rusty red color and it had a huge hubcap. It was a little slow for my taste, but I liked it. It had class. Plus it was free, so I didn’t complain.
While I was driving down the interstate I peeked at my reflection. My black, ragged pixie cut mocked me. I could remember the way it used to cascade down my back in raven ringlets. I wished it would just grow already. I mean, it had been six months. Wasn’t hair supposed to grow a half-inch every month? Obviously not, I thought.
Then I looked at my eyes. They were a brilliant cerulean, and most of the time I liked how the blue contrasted with my dark hair, but not today. No, at the moment they reminded me of my family - my real family.
My name is Mary Alice Brandon, but I go by Alice. Once upon a time, I had a real family. I lived in Biloxi, Mississippi with my mom, Shannon; my dad, Garrett; and my little sister, Cynthia. But this story didn’t have a happy ending. I will always blame myself for my parents’ deaths.
It was Christmas Eve and I was eight and Cynthia was five. We were driving home from my grandmother’s house after a delicious dinner. Cindy and I were talking excitedly about what we wanted Santa to bring us when I had my first vision.
I saw Cindy and myself at a funeral. Tears were sliding down my face and Cynthia sobbed hopelessly into my shoulder. And then I saw my parents’ names on the gravestones.
“NOOOOOOOOO!” I screeched snapping away from the vision.
“Alice, honey, what’s wrong?” my mother asked fearfully. I started crying at full volume.
“Mommy, D - Daddy, don’t diiiiiieeeee!!” I bawled. My dad turned around in his seat. It was the biggest mistake he’d ever make - his last mistake.
“Ali, don’t worry,” he said trying to comfort me, “Mommy and I aren’t going anywhere.” He didn’t see the deer standing in our path. It was entirely my fault.
The rest of that night was a blur. Cindy and I were all right, but my parents were killed instantly.
We spent the remainder of six years living with my grandmother. Cynthia was the only person I had ever told my secret to. I was so afraid that she would blame me but she didn’t. And for that I was eternally grateful.
When my grandmother passed away as well, Cynthia and I were separated. I went to live with a supposedly caring couple from Phoenix and Cindy went to live with a couple that lived in New York. I was able to see Cynthia on Christmases but most of the time I emailed her or we talked over the phone. I didn’t even get to celebrate her sixteenth birthday with her.
I pulled into the student parking lot and circled for a bit, trying to find a spot so I wouldn’t have to run so far through the rain. I finally did and jogged over to the building with a sigh that said Main Office. I stepped inside and walked over to the front desk like I had been told to do.
“Hi. I’m Alice Brandon,” I said to the receptionist.
“Well, good morning!” she said cheerfully. “My name is Ms. Cope. I have your papers right here.” She handed them to me to fill out. As I took them I became aware that we were not alone in the tiny room. A rush of déjà vu overcame me as I stared at the girl in the corner.
She was the most beautiful creature I had ever seen. Her chocolate brown waist length hair fell down her back in a beautiful single wave. Her heart shaped face was delicate but it looked like it would be as hard as granite. And her skin was even paler than mine. But it was her eyes that captured me. They were a topaz golden color and seemed so knowing and pure. Almost like she could project her soul through them.
Our eyes locked as she stood up and walked over to Ms. Cope. Her eyes didn’t leave mine even when she handed Ms. Cope the sheet of paper that she had been writing on. I couldn’t think clearly and I wanted to look away, but I couldn’t. I was, for lack of a better word, dazzled.
“Thank you, ma’am,” she said in a soft voice. It reminded me of bells.
“Anytime, Bells,” said Ms. Cope. How ironic, I thought. The girl finally looked away.
“Please,” she said coldly to the woman, “Call me Bella.” And with a final fleeting glance towards me, the girl from my vision left the office.