Hallie wandered the streets of Windenburg on her own. It was the first time she’d been here since… she didn’t want to think about that day. It was all a blur anyway. She remembered the grim reaper, crying a lot, staying with Peyton for a little while, crying some more, and then finally ending up with the Bloomers.
She shook her head. It felt so strange to be back. The place that should have been her home.
A life that should have been hers. The house she should have grown up in.
It was still there, but who knows who lived in it now. She didn’t want to know. The memories of that place were too painful anyway.
It was time to forget the past. What could have been. She needed to focus on what was to come.
She was a Newcrest heir now. An important piece in the legacy. She couldn’t change the life she’d lost, but she could shape a new one, and not just for herself. She would make her mark on the whole town. And that was something to look forward to.
Elsewhere in Windenburg, Seraphina stomped down the streets of the business district.
Just when she started to like the girl, she’d have to and ruing it all yet again. Seraphina still couldn’t believe Hallie was considered an heir just as much as she was, just for being vaguely related to them. It ridiculed her own status. What’s the point of being an heir if you’re not the only one?
But Hallie will see! They will all see…
“Ow!” She felt herself crashing into a strangers chest, their bodies uncomfortably close for a split second. “Watch where you’re going, llama head!”
“Llama head?” the boy was amused.
“Llama head, butt plum, whichever insult you Windenburgers understand,” she rolled her eyes.
“Colourful,” he laughed. “We’re not actually called Windenburgers, you know…”
“Whatever,” Sera growled. “Just don’t get in my way next time.”
“You ran into me,” the boy didn’t seem fazed.
“Beause YOU were in MY way,” Seraphina lost her patience.
“Why is a pretty girl like you so angry on a beautiful night like this?”
“Are you hitting on me?”
Seraphina was baffled. “Are you a total idiot? What makes you think you have a shot with me?”
“What makes you think I don’t?”
“I don’t have time for this,” Sera sighed.
“What’s wrong with you?” he raised his voice. “Look around you! You’re in the most beautiful place on the planet! Just look at that plum fountain down there and tell me it’s not breathtaking in the sunset! I’m not letting you go anywhere until you appreciate that beauty, plummit!”
“And how do you suggest I do that?” She prickled her nose.
“We could get closer, for starters,” he relaxed again.
“Closer to each other??”
“I meant closer to the fountain. But closer to each other will work too, your call.”
Seraphina followed the boy towards the fountain begrudgingly.
“Happy?” She gritted through her teeth.
“Yeah, pretty happy. But it’s not about me. It’s about you. Why are you so unhappy?”
“Pfft. I’m not unhappy,” Seraphina lied.
“Ok. So you’re just mad for no reason?”
“It’s none of your business.”
“Cool,” he shrugged. “Making a secret out of it will definitely make you feel better.”
“Look, I’m just trying to help,” he said eventually. “Whatever is happening to you, you’re not gonna feel better about it if you let it take control over you.”
“You don’t understand,” she shook her head. “That IS the problem! It has control over me because it literally is my whole life!”
“Surely it can’t be that bad…”
Seraphina sighed. How could she explain it?
“Have you ever had something taken away from you?” She asked. “Something that you really really wanted, something you were meant for ever since you were born?”
“Nope,” he shrugged. “I always get what I want.”
“You’re unbelievable!” She said angrily. “And to think I was gonna open up to you! YOU! Well forget that! Why am I even still sitting here with you?!”
“Because you like me, of course,” He answered casually.
“What??? How could you… why would you… I do not!”
“Cool,” he laughed. “I bet you’ll still go out on a date with me tomorrow night.”
“Who do you think you are?”
“The name is Antoine Priest,” he said simply. “But if you want to find out more, you’ll have to meet me at Hare and Hedgehog tomorrow at 7 pm.”
Seraphina was speechless. She couldn’t believe this guy.