Prologue II

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Five years later.

A lithe wind blew by and drifted his bronze hair back into his eyes that he had just now angrily pushed back. He glared up at the branches of the willow; his usually gentle features itched with faint annoyance. Even like that, he was a pretty sight to her wayward eyes.

"April Mildred, you are going to be so very sorry."

"Hah! Do try and make me."

He was a pretty sight, infact, to every eye of Maplebell that happened to roam over him. His dark hair and golden eyes had a penchant to tease the light with tactless grace; and this all in all made it impossible to sidestep their spectral, lingering brilliance.

"Stop being silly April." His gaze flashed at her_ aglow. Ablaze. She froze momentarily by their forestalling intensity. Fascinated, even from so far away. "You will regret it."

But April only smiled that careless, unaided, ever-dynamic smile. There happened to be nothing dainty about the nasty giggle she flung at him from the tangled mess of bough above. She had twigs in her hair, mischief in her smile. And no plans for regret. With him, she had no regrets. "Dare I doubt that ever?"

He scowled and stomped closer to the twisted trunk of the tree, craning his neck to watch her. "Climb along you; I am hopeful you will fall down and break your neck."

She scrunched her nose, smiling down at him. "Your thoughtfulness does you favor Adam, did I tell you?"

She tucked his notebook under her arm and clambered up on higher, the thriftier branches of the old lady-Willow. Stems shuddered and loose leaves drizzled all over his brown head like candid blessings, he reached out for the ebony trunk_ nervous on her behalf. Eyes wide, he stared up as she ascended higher; tightening his grip on the coarse bark.

It was as if her performance was his deeming. Like if she were to fall, his neck would break.

He gnashed his teeth, cheeks angry red. "Don't make me come up there April, I will."

"Which indeed would be very frightening Adam, considering you don't know how to climb a tree?" She placed herself on one stout outgrowth, making sure of its durability to handle a thirteen year old's weight by forcing it down with her knees.

She fitted snugly into the crooked disparity of the tree and placed his textbook on her lap reverently. This chase, afterall, had been baited by this very entity.

"April, you won't turn one page!" His voice from below objected, eyes demanded.

She flipped the hardcover and cocked her small head to simper at him. He bristled by the mere gesture, she could see.

"How dare you do that you,..." He searched for appropriate word. " Harlot!"

She nearly fell off the tree laughing.

"Hand me back my notebook April or else I will..I will..." hate you more? Love you less?

Could he?

"Come here and get it." She suggested, and lazily turned another leaf of the book. He gasped.

"You can't read it!"

She cleared her throat, as if to negate his point. Read out aloud like a banshee. "Lost in April -Adam Evans."

He groaned. He was infuriated. Fuming. The audacity of this girl!

On the other hand, she froze like a suspended epoch. Lost in April. In April, that the adriftance came to pass. What was lost?

And In her, no less?

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