I never really understood why every girl was so eager and ready to fall in love. I personally thought love was just another four letter word that got me only a few points in scrabble, then he walked into my life, and I knew my life had changed. I knew I needed him to survive.
"Haley, are you ready? We're going to be so late if you don't hurry!" my best friend, Taylor, shouted from the dining room. I sighed and dropped my brush, letting my auburn curls spray across my shoulders and down my back. I quickly lined my sapphire eyes in black, causing the honey specks to twinkle. I straightened my ruby colored blouse and flattened my black skirt and left my room, grabbing my black purse on the way out. Taylor handed me my heels when I joined her and I quickly slipped them on. "It's about time. I was about to leave without you. You know Brandon hates when I'm late to school because he can't give me my good morning hug," she chastised. Yeah, that's why, I thought to myself. I couldn't dare tell Taylor that her boyfriend of four months wanted her there early so he could leave the campus to see some college girl. It's like everyone knows.. Everyone except Taylor. I smiled anyway. "I'm sorry. It's just that you know that I want to catch someone's eye," I joked. Taylor knew better than anyone that I don't date. I looked down at the floor as the memory played again in my mind.
"Michael, stop. I'm just... I'm not ready," I told an intoxicated Michael. He smiled. "Come on, baby. You know I just want to show you how much I love you," he slurred. I shook my head. "Michael, no. You're drunk. I want the first time it happens to be special, which means you'll be sober," I said, strength resonating in my voice. He sighed and I saw something new in his eyes and I couldn't put a name to it. It wasn't desire, I've seen that enough on him to know it through alcohol and in the dark. It was lust and determination. Even through the alcohol, I was sure of it. His eyes hardened and I opened my mouth to tell him I was leaving when his hand covered it, then darkness over took me.
I looked up at Taylor, who had a sympathetic look on her face. I must have had tears in my eyes because she quickly wrapped her slender arms around my neck and held me, even though the tears would never fall. After a moment, she let go. "You're so strong, Haley. Even through the hardest times, I've never seen you shed a tear. You know it's okay to cry sometimes," she told me. I smiled softly,thinking how hard it is not being able to tell my best friend every detail about me. A small in the back of my head vaguely reminded me that it was daytime, but not sunny, not yet, at least. Despite that fact, I slipped my sunglasses on quickly. I turned, and walked to the car.
After fifteen minutes of awkward silence, we arrived at Gayreat Central High School. I felt a dry ache at the back of my throat and instantly remembered I hadn't had dinner last night or breakfast this morning. I sighed. "Hey, Tay. Isn't that Brandon over there?" I asked, pointing to the west wing of the school, by the old oak trees. She looked and squealed , parked quickly, and hurried out of the car. "Hey, I gotta run to my locker real quick. Meet you two in a jiffy,". I lied. She nodded and ran to meet him. I headed in the opposite direction and left the parking lot. Looking down and thinking about what Michael did to me, I didn't notice when I ran into someone. "Oh, I'm so sorry. I didn't see you," I apologized quickly. A male voice chuckled. "It's all right. I'm Drew. Drew Idacut," he introduced. I looked up and got lost in his deep green eyes, but quickly I noticed the honey specks that separated our kind from the normals. They could only be seen by our kind. I smiled. "Haley Monroe. I like your eyes. The honey really works with the green," I flirted. Wait, what? I haven't flirted with anyone since Michael, not even for blood. He smiled. "I prefer the blue of yours," he replied. I blushed, then the ache intensified and I hissed, throwing my hands to my throat instinctively. He chuckled again. "When was the last time you fed?" he asked. I smiled weakly. "Yesterday afternoon. After school," I answered, embarrassed. Every nightwalker knows that they need to feed as often as humans do. He shook his head. "You skipped dinner and breakfast? Are you trying to kill yourself?" he hissed quietly. I growled at him, the weak morning sun hitting me and burning the exposed skin. I needed to feed, and fast. "Listen, I've been busy and now, I need to find someone to feed from, so if you'll excuse me," I said, pushing past him. He grabbed my wrist. "Haley, come on. I know someone you can feed from," he told me, dragging me to the dark, protective arms of the forest east of the school.