Chapter 3: Old Acquaintance

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ROWAN

So it was decided. We were going to Barry's. Kestrel was right about her prediction which was overly creepy. I had followed my Dad's car in my own and when we finally arrived at Barry's, it only made it more real that Kestrel was right. As we took our seats at table 3, I pulled out my cell phone and began to text Kestrel.

You were right. We are at Barry's!!!!!! xo

"Rowan, put your cell phone away." Mom muttered. Secretly rolling my eyes, I placed my cell into my pocket and sighed. The waitress took out order and I gave my usual:

"What they're having, please. Thank you." I said and the waitress with the short dress nodded. Her hair was all blond, clipped up behind her head, letting tiny ringlets fall around her tiny ears. She was perky and cute. My brother couldn't stop staring. Creep. She disappeared from the table, tapping her pen against her pad and singing under her breath. My cell vibrated on my thigh and I secretly pulled it out under the table and touched in my pass code.

1 Message Received: Kestrel Vine.

OMG? Really? Do you think I'm psychic then???!!! xo

I began to type back, my fingers at work in super speed.

I'm not sure what to believe? It's strange!xo

I didn't have to wait long before a reply.

It's OK. I understand. I'm not sure if I believe myself. xo

I sent back two 'xo's and put my phone back into my pocket, and rested my elbows on the table. Any second now, my Mom would mutter about table manners.

"Rowan..." Mom said.

"What?"

"Elbows on the table? Don't you have table manners? We're at a restaurant!" She hissed quietly. I rolled my eyes and placed my hands beside my legs.

A song played in the background; some kind of musical orchestra filled with violins and flutes et cetera. I closed my eyes and let the music go through my ears like oceanic waves rushing through my skull. Nothing seemed to be around me except the soothing music, excluding anything of reality away. My Mom's voice dragged me back to Earth.

"Rowan, would you go get my handbag from the car, please?" She pleaded me with puppy eyes. I almost growled.

I gave her a reluctant nod and she handed me the keys. I took them from her fingers and walked down the aisle of tables and chairs, dodging a few waitresses on the way. I pushed through the swinging glass doors and walked into the car park, my stilettos clicking on the hard stone pavement. The night air was warm and stuffy; it was expected in California. I located my Dad's SUV and unlocked the doors with one press of the button. The car gave a beep and I pulled open the front seat door and picked up my Mother's bag. Closing the door, I felt a rush of breeze fly past me, in more ways than just natural. I span around and felt the night air. Still and cool. But no breeze whatsoever.

I locked up the SUV and walked back across the car park, as quick as my heels could go. I stopped. Something was staring from the shadow of the night. Something that made me not want to walk past into the restaurant. Something that was staring at me like I was prey.

There was only one solution: I ran like hell.

I was surprised I didn't fall in the heels. Or even snap them. All I knew was the eyes in the shadows was dangerous. I exploded through the restaurant doors with a cry of relief, causing a few heads to turn and look at me as if I was a total freak. Slinging my Mom's Prada bag over my shoulder, I walked back to our table as quickly as I could.

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