'See you later mum!' Emilia shouted back into the house before pulling the door shut tightly before her. A familiar sense of dread settled itself into Emilia's stomach as she began her journey to school. She got the same feeling every single morning at the thought of having to face another school day.
The sky was a dull grey and the merciless wind chilled her through to the bone and flung her hair into her eyes, blocking her vision.
Emilia heaved an impatient sigh and tied her hair back with a stray hair band she kept round her wrist for emergencies like these.
It normally took her roughly half an hour to walk to school and as she glanced at her phone she realised she was running late and began to quicken her pace. The street was desolate, devoid of any sound except Emilia's breathing and the harsh wind's eerie whistling. A car zoomed past her, a bright red Ford shooting a trail of fumes behind it.
'Emilia!' someone shouted from behind her.
Emilia turned around at the recognisable sound of her best friend's voice.
'Hey Zach,' she smiled warmly. 'What are you doing here?'
'I actually came round your house a few minutes ago to apologise for the other day but your mum said you'd already set off.'
'Yeah, you know, when you came round but I was going out.'
'Oh that,' Emilia scoffed. 'Don't worry about it.'
Zach shrugged. 'I felt pretty bad. So, how are you this morning?'
'Alright,' she replied, her tone a little too cheery, her smile completely forced. 'How about you?'
'Yeah, not too bad thanks.'
Even though they were best friends, Zach was the total opposite of Emilia. Whereas she was meek and unsure of herself, Zach was outgoing and chatty. He had every reason to be as well, with his good looks and caring personality, it was virtually impossible to hate him.
Emilia had never told Zach about Ria and her friends. She knew what would happen. Zach would confront Ria and things would escalate into a massive argument and the results would be ten times worse.
'Hey, did you know we have a new kid joining us today?'
'Yeah, he's expected to come in at lunch. He's a complete mystery to everyone.'
'Well he's bound to be, he hasn't even arrived at school yet.'
'Yeah but to his neighbours as well, they don't know a thing about him. I did some digging.' Zach winked.
'Oh, that's interesting.' Emilia mused with feigned interest. A new arrival at the school hardly appealed to her. It was just another person to see what a freak she was and to join in with the taunts. Especially if it was a guy. Ria would claim her stakes on him instantly and he'd be pulled over to the dark side.
Emilia scrunched her nose up at how crap the day was going to be.
* * *
She was sat in maths, her chin resting in her hands, gazing out the window when the teacher called on her, breaking through her reverie.
'Emilia? Do you know the answer?'
Her head jerked up and her classmates sniggered at her.
The teacher sighed, exasperated. 'You really should pay more attention in lessons Emilia. Maybe then you'll find your grades improving.'
Urgh, whatever, like that's important right now, Emilia directed her thoughts towards her teacher, annoyed.
She couldn't stop thinking about the necklace and the power it so obviously held, about how many times it had protected her, guided her and told her what to do. It was all so surreal to her, nothing like this had ever happened before. She had no doubt it was down to the mysterious boy in her dreams, he had obviously wanted to help her and so he gave her the necklace, but who was he? Or what was he...
The door opened and claimed everyones attention, everyones apart from Emilia, who's thoughts were still someplace else.
'Ah,' the teacher smiled at the newcomer. 'Everyone I want to introduce you to Dominik, he's new here so I want everyone to welcome him.'
'Thanks,' the boy spoke. Emilia briefly thought she recognised the voice, but she didn't care at the minute. She was staring out the window, a slight frown creasing her forehead.
There must be some sort of explanation. Hmm, maybe it is instinct and I'm just blowing things out of proportion. It's impossible for a piece of jewellery to tell me what to do, isn't it?
'The only available seat is next to Emilia, in the far corner there.'
A few seconds later, someone slid into the chair beside her and Emilia got a whiff of some very expensive smelling aftershave, one that smelt deliciously appealing and she glanced over surreptitiously, trying to be discreet. However, as soon as she saw what he looked like, she couldn't help her sharp intake of breath, or her mouth from hanging open.
He was extremely handsome, but that's not what alarmed her the most. He returned her gaze and she gasped again.
It was the boy that had appeared so frequently in her dreams. Here. In real life. He was sat here, staring at her.
That's impossible! Emilia vehemently refused to acknowledge it was really him, it had to be someone else, someone who just looked like him. It was physically impossible....
'Hi,' his voice was every bit as sweet as she remembered and she felt a warm blush slowly rise to her cheeks.
'It's you...' she whispered.
His face became an expression of confusion and slight worry. He didn't appear to recognise her at all.
'Um...yeah it's me,' he gave an uneasy laugh, turning to face the front.
'I-I'm sorry,' Emilia stuttered. 'You just look like someone I know.'
The fact that he didn't know who she was only confirmed that she was imagining things, that he wasn't really from her dreams, he was just an ordinary teenage boy, albeit an incredibly good looking one.
She spent the rest of the lesson unfocussed, occasionally glancing at him from the corner of her eyes, memorising every single detail about him. How long his eyelashes were and how they stroked his skin each time he blinked. How defined his bone structure was, high cheekbones and a chiselled jawline. How he seemed to frown ever so slightly as he was writing, like something was bothering him.
When the bell finally rung at the end of the lesson, he packed up his stuff silently and turned to face Emilia.
'See you later?'
Emilia couldn't respond, she could only stare back at him. He sighed and exited the room obviously giving up trying to talk to her.