The boy took a step back, and by a step back he practically walked away from Sophie.
"How did you know my name?" His eyes filled with wonder and... relief?
Everything came rushing back to Sophie at once. All of her memories were, in fact, memories not moments of deja vu. She was completely and utterly confused. Why was she at the museum again? Why didn't Fitz know her name? How was she suppose to explain how she knew his name when she didn't even know why she knew it?
"I'm a telepath. I read your mind." That was about the dumbest thing she could had said, but she already knew he was a telepath himself and would completely understand. Or so she hoped.
"Okay. Wow. Definitely didn't expect you to just reveal that to me just now. Also a complete violation of my privacy, but that's not your fault." Fitz had a complete range of emotions displayed across his face. "No one else knows that you're a telepath, right?"
"Of course not!" Sophie burst out. "I could tell you're one too. I knew I could trust you." She was becoming more aware of the fact that he had no clue who she was. She was the only one aware of her future. She was reliving the moment where she met Fitz.
"That's good." He looked at her eyes again as if he couldn't believe they were brown. Sophie felt self conscious the more he stared, but she knew exactly why he would stare- all elves had blue eyes. She didn't. Everything about this overwhelmed her. Why didn't he remember her? She began to wobbled on her feet.
Fitz grabbed her arms to steady her. "It's okay, Sophie. I'm here to help you. We've been looking for you for twelve years."
Twelve years? That statement proved that she was, in fact, twelve again. Why was this happening? This was impossible! She couldn't be reliving everything.
The walls closed in and the room started to spin.
She needed air.
She jerked away and bolted through the door, stumbling as her shaky legs found their rhythm.
She sucked in giant breaths as she ran down the stairs in front of the museum. The smoke from the fires burned her lungs and white bits of ash flew in her face, but she ignored them. She wanted as much space between her and Fitz as possible.
Everything was too confusing. She needed to be alone.
"Sophie, come back!" Fitz shouted behind her.
She picked up her pace as she raced through the courtyard at the base of the steps, past the wide fountain and over the grassy knolls to the sidewalk. No one got in her way—everyone was inside because of the poor air quality. But she could still hear his footsteps gaining on her.
"Wait," Fitz called. "You don't have to be afraid."
She wanted so badly to explain to him that she wasn't afraid of him. Rather why was she here again? Why didn't he know who she was?
She ignored him, pouring all her energy into her sprint and fighting the urge to glance over her shoulder to see how far back he was. She made it halfway through a crosswalk before the sound of screeching tires reminded her she hadn't looked both ways.
She remembered this moment. Sophie scolded herself for forgetting it. If she hadn't been stupid and ran off like she had previously, they wouldn't be happening.
Her head turned and she locked eyes with a terrified driver struggling to stop his car before it plowed right over her.
If she didn't do this right, she was going to die. She was panicking too much, she tried to remember everything she had done before, but nothing was coming to her. The car was getting closer and closer, she couldn't remember what she had done to save herself the first time.
She was going to die.
The next second was a blur.
The car swerved right—missing Sophie by inches—then jumped the curb and sideswiped a streetlight. The heavy steel lantern cracked from its base and plummeted toward Sophie.
Instinctively, she reached out her hand and used telekinesis to lower the lantern to the curb. Then she moved the car out of the middle of the road. She opened her mind to listen for thoughts and found the frantic ones of the driver. Based off their thoughts they were okay, but had seen her use telekinesis.
Time seemed to stop as Fitz ran over to her. She stared into his eyes—eyes that were now stretched as wide as they could go.
"How did you do that?" he whispered.
"Telekinesis? I think?" Sophie groaned inwardly, realizing how horrible she was at pretending she didn't know anything. Fitz didn't seem to question her response.
"We need to get out of here," Sophie and Fitz said at the exact same time. Both were pointing at the driver, who was staring at them as if he had witnessed a miracle.
Fitz pulled her to her feet as he got up. "Come on, let's get out of sight."
She was too overwhelmed to figure out a plan on her own, so she didn't resist when he dragged her down the street. She didn't have any better ideas.
They took off running, though no one was following. She had no idea what was happening to her and it changed everything. Her mind ran through terrifying scenarios, most of which involved the black swan trying to run experiments on her. She watched the road, ready to bolt at the first sign of anything suspicious.
They reached the zoo's massive parking lot, and Sophie relaxed when she saw people outside, milling around their cars. Nothing would happen with so many witnesses. She slowed her pace to a walk.
She figured it would only be best to just go with the motions, reliving everything that had happened the first time. After all, she couldn't just pretend she just knew everything. She had to act as if she thought she was a human girl who had no clue what an elf was.
"What do you want?" she asked when she caught her breath.
"I'm here to help you, I promise."
"Why were you looking for me?" She pretended to be nervous. Hopefully her acting was convincing. Thanks to her photographic memory, she already remembered this whole exact conversation.
He opened his mouth, then hesitated. "I'm not sure if I'm supposed to tell you."
"How am I supposed to trust you if you won't answer my questions?"
He considered that for a second. "Okay, fine—but I don't know much. My father sent me to find you. We've been looking for a specific girl your age, and I was supposed to observe and report back to him, like always. I wasn't supposed to talk to you." He frowned, like he was disappointed with himself. "I just couldn't figure you out. You don't make sense."
"Oh! My eyes," Sophie blurted out before covering her mouth. She already had forgotten that she wasn't suppose to know about that.
"How did you know that?" Fitz was growing suspicious. Sophie had to think fast.
"I... uh... read your mind again." She stumbled on her words. "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have violated your privacy like that. I'm so used to being around humans and not blocking their thoughts." She hated lying to him. She just didn't know what would happen if she told him how she really knew.
He glanced over his shoulder, frowning when he spotted a crowd of fanny-pack-wearing tourists within earshot. He pulled her toward a deserted corner of the parking lot, ducking behind a dark green minivan.
"Okay—there's no easy way to explain this, so I'm just going to say it. We're not human, Sophie."
It took everything in her not to laugh at him. Little did he know she'd be one of the most powerful elves alive. Clearly she wasn't human.
"Sooo.... I'm not human?" Sophie tried to figure out what to say next since she clearly was aware of her existence as an elf. "What are you saying I am?"
"An elf," Fitz looked her up and down. "You don't believe me."
"Oh, trust me." Sophie sighed. "I believe you way more than you realize."
YOU ARE READING
Due to unknown reasons, Sophie Foster has just woken up in Book 1 at the museum with all her memories still intact. Now as a 12 year old, Sophie must figure out how to make everything go right this time and try to stop the Neverseen in the process. ...