• [Chapter 1]

    tab My name was always spoken softly, almost spoken in whispers. I always believed that no one knew my name, no one knew of my existence. To everyone around me, I thought I was like a shadow blowing in the wind, barley seen, never heard. I always kept to myself since everyone I spoke to slowly began to disappear. Soon I, myself, wished to disappear. The day I made up my mind to do so, was the same day my world brightened up.
    tab It was a nice sunny day, the breeze from the sea felt wonderful against the sun's beating heat. Today seemed no different than any other day. The same people walked around the house, which needed many repairs. Those people, that I had to call family, always woke up at the same time on weekends. 9:30 AM, on the dot. I never really saw them in the morning though because I was out by the sea every morning. I loved the ocean and drew every sunrise and sunset. My siblings never agreed with me that our home was the perfect spot for watching the sunrise and sunset, all they wanted to do was move and get a new house. My parents can't afford a new home nor can they afford to repair the house.
    tab This morning I sat on a rock near the ledge of our cliff that sat above the rushing sea. My house was hidden by the forest that separated us, and all the other houses from this beautiful site. I laid my sketch pad on the grass and walked toward the tip of the cliff. No one came through here anyways and no one would notice if I was gone, so if I took just one step then I would fall to my death. That's all it would take, one step, and then my existence would be erased.
    tab Right when I was about to take that step a hand flew across my waist, pulling me back. The force almost had me trip backwards onto the rocks, which I had expected to happen. Instead my body rested against someone else's body. I looked up to see a boy, one who looked unfamiliar.
    tab "What are you doing?" I asked him confused. No one ever came through here. No one knew I was here. Why did a complete stranger just "save" my life?
    tab "I should be asking you that. Are you insane? From way up here and with the rushing sea below, a fall like that could easily kill you." He said telling me exactly what I already knew, with a hint of anger in his voice.
    tab "That was the whole idea." I mumbled to myself. The boy just stared at me confused. He suddenly tightened his grip around my waist.
    tab "You are insane." He mumbled. "That yours?" He was pointing to the drawing of the sunrise. I nodded, getting the urge to cover the picture right away. No one ever saw my drawings, mainly because I refused to let anyone see them. "It's nice. Is that someone you pictured or saw?"
    tab This guy really was a curious fellow. I didn't want to tell him anything, but I suddenly heard myself saying, "It's the sunrise that can only be seen from this spot." I looked up at him, he had this distant look on his face, as he looked out to the horizon.
    tab The sun had risen above the sea now and there was a boat sailing against the sun's rays. It was a beautiful site. I tried to escape his grasp, but he didn't loosen his grip, but instead he tightened it. "If you refuse to let me go, at least hand me my sketchpad. Or watch me draw if you want. Just. Let. Me. Draw." He lifted one eye brow and shrugged, then let me go. I walked to my rock and sketch pad and began sketching the scenery.
    tab I could feel his gaze from over my shoulder. "What's your name?" I asked him, trying to ease the tension that hung in the air.
    tab "Phoenix," he replied softly. "And yours?"
    tab "Kairi," I said as I finished my sketch. I looked up at Phoenix who was still standing over me. "Are you new to the neighborhood?"
    tab "Kinda, my family just moved in about a week ago."
    tab "You go to Ragen High?" I asked. I wished he would say yes because then there would be someone for me to go to school with. Instead his reply was, "No, I go to Glenbrook High." My hopes fell for two main reasons. The first being that I would have no one to talk to or see in school. The second reason being that our schools had a long time rivalry. I don't know all the details, but I knew it would become worse for me at school and at home.
    tab I guess Phoenix noticed that my face had fallen because he asked, "What's wrong?"
    tab "Nothing." Suddenly I heard a dog barking in the distance, soon it sounded closer. About a minute later a Shiba Inu appeared between the trees. It barked again and trotted towards Phoenix. I starred at the dog with interest. My family hated animals, but I just adored them.
    tab "You wanna pet him?" Phoenix asked. He sat on one knee while petting the Inu behind the ears. I nodded and he gestured for me to come closer. I got down on one knee, leaving my sketching pat on the rock, and cautiously held out my hand to pet the dog. At first the dog just starred at my hand curiously then sniffed it. I took that as a good sign and petted its nose.
    tab "What's his name?"
    tab "Gi." The dog looked up at Phoenix and barked. I could tell Gi really liked Phoenix because when Phoenix said his name, his tail began to wag furiously. I smiled a little at this relationship, a little jealous. I wished that there would be someone who liked me as much as Gi and Phoenix liked each other. But I knew there was no one like that in this town.
    tab Phoenix stood up, looking towards the forest. " I think my parents want me to head back home. That's one of the reasons why they send Gi out, because they don't know where to look for me." He starred at me for awhile. I had a faint feeling that he didn't want to leave here because of me. "I can't seem to want to trust you alone. Especially after earlier's almost event.
    tab I starred back at him. I wouldn't trust myself either, but then again I trusted no one. I looked up at the sky and saw only one cloud. "That must be a very lonely cloud." I heard myself say.
    tab "It won't be lonely if it had a friend, now would it?" Phoenix was staring at me.
    tab "What if that cloud can't find another one?"
    tab "Then another cloud will find it. And save it from its loneliness." I starred at Phoenix for awhile. Was he thinking what I was thinking? That the cloud represented me and that the other cloud was him? No, he couldn't be. He was still a complete stranger to me.
    tab "I think my parents are wondering where I'm at by now. I'll see you around." I took my things and ran. I ran as fast as I could through the forest to my back porch. When I reached the porch I was careful for where I stepped, because you never knew when a plank wood would break underneath you. I slowly opened the back door, because if I opened it took quickly, it could easily come off its hinges. I looked around the kitchen, no one was around. The sink was filled with dirty dishes, which they would expect me to clean.
    tab I walked through the kitchen to the living room, still no one in site. Which was strange considering if my family wasn't in the kitchen, they would be in the living room. I climbed the stairs to the second floor of the house, where everyone's bedroom was except for mine. My room was at the top of the spiral staircase, exactly where the attic would be.
    tab On the door of my room were two notes. One from my parents and one from my sister. I took both notes off of my door and went into my room. I didn't bother reading either note, I could already figure out what they said. I sat down at my desk and searched for tape or thumb tacks. Once I found them I hung my new drawings around my room then sat down on my bed and began my homework.