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Deja Blue

Author: Kintora

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Chapter 1: A Certain Normalcy

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A/N: Yes, I know some of my readers would kill me for starting a new story, but hey! Technically, I'm not just starting. You can see what I mean if you read the notices in my bio. I actually finished this whole story and it's pretty much good to go to the publisher in it's original format. This is just the fan fiction version that I'm uploading on just for you guys. It's a little different, but I think you'll like it all the same. When my book is ready to go out to the public in print, I'll let you guys know all the details.

Disclaimer: This will be the final time in the whole length of the story that I will disclaim all the Kingdom Hearts characters and a certain Twilight Town. However – original characters, plot, and certain places in my make-believe Twilight Town all belong to me. For instance, Twilight High School absolutely belongs to me. It is not from the game series, but rather, it was conjured up in my thoughts. (Other examples include Evening Flower Lane, Sunrise Boulevard, etc.) I do not this story reproduced anywhere else, nor do I want to my plot stolen. Likewise, I would greatly appreciate it if you guys would keep an eye out for me, and let me know if you see any of my work uploaded anywhere else. Thank you!

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The day was beginning to dawn, the birds were chirping, and the dog outside was barking incessantly somewhere on Evening Flower lane. People were beginning to wake up with growing smiles that could outshine the morning star. Of course, those were people who were used to life in Twilight Town. It seemed that there was only one person who could barely pull her bedraggled body out of bed. This same youth seriously wanted to damn the brightening day to the burning pits of hell.

Meet Namine. As a sweet sixteen-year-old girl going on seventeen, she would be attending Twilight High as a new junior this very same morning. On any other day, she would probably be the most normal, cheeriest person on the face of the planet. But that was any other day.

Lets get this straight. Namine was a far cry from cheery on any morning, and she definitely was not your average teenager for that matter either. No, no, no… It's understood that no one and nobody are actually average or normal. The world would like you to think that you are your own unique self and have your own unique life to live – and so that all makes you a special person. But Namine was a special person. She was just special-er-er…

Oh, she was quite special. You'll see why.

"NAMINE! #$&$&#&&$$&#$#$!"

"Urgh!" Namine coughed as a heavy weight dropped onto her stomach, Hayner, get off of me!" Namine struggled under her brother's weight to turn over. She wished it were last night again, so she could get some more shuteye. That, and she wished her room were soundproof and Hayner-free.

"No, you'll just go straight back to sleep, sis. And guess who gets yelled at by mom when you don't wake up?"

Namine grumbled, "Me? I'm not pansy like you – mom doesn't scare me. So go away already…"

Hayner's good-natured voice laughed above her, "No, I get the stick. Mom expects me to take care of you since I'm a boy – and your older twin brother."

He wears that title like a crown, Namine thought as she cracked a blue eye open wearily and glared up at her not-so-twin-like-twin, "Go. Away."

Hayner ruffled her blonde hair affectionately, "Aww, hey. Always a grouch in the morning, huh? Did you have a bad dream last night, or a wet one?" He paused, snickering, "Is that why you're so cozy on the floor?"

Namine simply yawned and stretched, rolling over and flipping Hayner off of her stomach unceremoniously. Honestly, sometimes her so-called big brother acted like such a kid. Well, he was only the older twin anyway. She mumbled sarcastically, "No, I felt like sleeping on the floor last night."

"Really?" he asked, disbelievingly. Namine almost laughed seeing his gullible hazel eyes widen.

"Yes really. Now give me five more minutes, dummy."

Hayner quirked an eyebrow at her and shrugged. Apparently, his sister was grumpier than usual on this particular morning. He couldn't blame her though. It was their big day. He could only watch her helplessly as Namine's tangled mop of blonde hair snuggled back under the covers pooling above the carpeted floorboard.

He grinned mischievously as he stood up. A brother's got to do what a brother's got to do. Even if it was at the risk of his sister's temper.

Namine heard him walk away down the hall outside of her door. She smiled to herself despite the fogginess of sleep still tugging at her mind so early in the morning. Suddenly, she felt the hairs on the back of her beck rise as she saw an image behind her eyelids of Hayner and a water bottle in his left hand, quietly unscrewing the cap above her head, and tilting it downwards…

"Don't."

Startled, Hayner moved back, "I'm not doing anything."

"Then what's that water bottle doing in your left hand?" Namine asked from under her quilted sheets.

"What?" Hayner asked, trying to play dumb. He saw the covers rise and fall quickly as Namine giggled. "What?" he asked again with more conviction. He felt worried now. The grouch never laughed in the morning.

Namine poked her head out from under the covers and grinned at him, "Why are you wearing those Barney boxers that mom bought you last Christmas? I thought you said you'd never wear them!"

His jaw dropped and his eyes bugged as he gawked, "You… You – ! This better not be some kind of weird one-way twin telepathy thingie!"

"Nope. I just had a vision," Namine smiled sweetly at him, "Don't worry though. I didn't see anything else." She sat up and rubbed the sleep from her eyes before standing up and throwing the covers back onto the bed, "You win. I'm going to shower now."

She walked past her stupefied twin as she stepped into the hall. No later than she enter the bathroom did a breeze zoom by just as Hayner disappeared into his room at the other end of the corridor. No doubt to change out of his Barney boxers right away, she thought grinning widely.

Breakfast was normal to say the least. Namine, no matter how late she woke up, was always first to the table.

After gulping down some cheerios and juice, she hurried over to her reflection before the fridge. Adjusting her white blouse and blue plaid skit, she stared a while at herself before pulling a small frown. Running her hand through her dull blonde hair, Namine wished she could have been born with more "good" looks like Hayner. All the girls swooned at him at their old school, and nobody could believe that the two of them were even related – much less twins. While he stood tall and proud, a total blitzball jock who knew how to win girls as much as he knew how to win games – she stood at a petite five two height and could blend unnoticeably against a wall. Both of them could style their hair for ages, but only Hayner could keep his wavy highlighted hair all chic and gravity-defying. Not that she wanted anything gravity-defying, but she couldn't make her hair any more stylized than 'blah.'

As she continued to model before her refrigerator, she hardly noticed Hayner as he waltzed over to the counter and grabbed an orange. He peeled its skin into a perfect orange ribbon before prying the fruit apart idly, "You nervous, Namine?"

"Mmhm," Namine hummed absently as she pulled her hair into a ponytail, inspecting it carefully before tugging the fat white ribbon out again and stuffing it into a hidden pocket inside her pleated skirt. She continued to tug at her hair and turn around dejectedly, only to leap backwards into the fridge from her twin's leering face. Hayner grinned cheerfully at her, dancing away before she could feed him a knuckle sandwich for breakfast. She huffed irritably at him before giving her bloodless cheeks a few slaps to create a pink blush while inspecting her image on the fridge again.

Hayner's playful voice called back at her from the door, "I wouldn't keep looking at the fridge if I were you, Namine. No matter how much you look at it – it'll always stay a fridge."

"I hope you know I was looking at myself, thanks."

Hayner flashed her another smile as he bent for his book bag, "Well then, no matter how much you look at yourself, you're not about to get skinny any time soon, my little phat sis."

"Fat!" Namine snorted. She turned around and let her hands fall, "Actually…"

Hayner looked at her oddly, "What is it?"

Namine shifted her eyes to him, "What kind of people do you think we'll meet? I've never been good at making friends, remember?"

She turned away again and tugged relentlessly at her hair again, "I'm weird. I don't fit in like you since I…" She laughed suddenly, unnerving her brother slightly, "Since I can't seem to behave, for the lack of better words."

Namine twisted a lock of her pale blonde hair over and over around her finger. Suddenly, she felt Hayner grab her hand, startling her. She looked at him irritably, "What?"

"First," he began, "Leave your hair alone. It's done nothing terrible to you, nor has your swelling, purple finger."

Namine opened her mouth to retort, but Hayner cut her off again, "And, you need to reign in your sense of speech a bit. Honesty's something many people don't have, but that doesn't mean you should be so straightforward all the time," He gave her a fake painful face, "If I weren't your poor and abused brother who's used your attitude, I'd probably have jumped a building already."

"Hayner!"

He winked at her, "Hey, I'm just being honest."

Namine rolled her eyes, but wisely kept the next comment to herself as she stooped to grab her black school bag. Lifting an eyebrow at her brother, she pointed to his tattered shoes, "Hey, are you sure you're wearing those things with your uniform? Where are the new loafers that mom got for you?"

Her twin picked at his white dress shirt and stuffed his hands into a pocket of his dark slacks. He shrugged slightly, causing the unattended blazer on his shoulder to slip a few inches, "I skateboard to school for one. And why not? I can wear anything and pull it off with this hot bod and face."

Namine hummed, skipping out the door with her roller blades, "Like your Barney boxers? Lets add that pink tutu I made you wear when we were six."

"Hey, be quiet about stuff like that! What happens if a cute girl walking down the street heard you say that to me?" he whined after her.

"My words do justice, not crime," Namine retorted smartly.

"Yeah? Well I'll bet you could make prisoners pee their pants if you really tried."

Namine felt more light-hearted as she continued to squabble and banter with her brother as he skateboarded beside her on the way to school. School would definitely be a challenge though, even if her brother would be there, watching her back everyday like he always did. It was something she could never take lightly even if she tried.

Still, she would try to fit in – as in, try to take a leaf out of Hayner's book.

Namine sighed feeling the cool morning air whip past her face.

Alas, she only said she would try.

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Namine skidded to a halt before the looming school gates and began to loosen her roller blades. She bent down, tying the laces together before swinging one blade over her shoulder. Her gray-blue eyes scoured the school grounds, her stomach knotting in anticipation. Honestly, it didn't look like a bad place. The school was built on fresh cut grass that stretched out like a field on all sides. There were surprisingly few buildings snuggling against the vast green boundaries for a huge high school built in the middle of an urban city. Twilight High itself didn't look imposing either, seeing as it was wide and spacious looking and the architecture faintly reminded her of a typical Marseille's palace. It was a few stories high with beige sandstone walls, several pillars, and many tall, wide iridescent windows that lined the building walls giving off a welcoming air of elegance and prestige.

To say the least, the construction was better than she expected for an urban high school. It was the epitome of a modern Palais Longchamp. Yet she didn't feel like stepping a foot onto the green and flowery school grounds.

The problem?

Way too many people crowded the grounds before the main entrances. Still, she forced herself to stumble through the gates on her own (seeing as Hayner ditched her the instant they reached the gates!) The awful awkwardness made her feel a little sick. She didn't know anybody there, besides her brother. Being the new kid at school was never easy for her, as she tended to distance herself from curious stares. What was the icebreaker speech that she and Hayner worked on for her days, and days ago? How did it even start?

'Hi, my name is Namine nice to meet you.'

'Hi, I'm new. My brother and I just moved from...'

It must have slipped her mind.

She could practically hear Hayner's voice in her head urging her to go introduce herself to people who seemed to want to talk to her, but were too shy to. She could hear him say that taking the first step gave other people a nice first impression and could gain her some allies or even friends in school – even a place to sit at during lunch.

Or, she convinced herself that she could sneak off to the library during lunch and save herself the trouble of talking.

After all, the student body seemed riddled with different cliques and prejudices. For instance, she could see the jocks and cheerleaders near some butterfly bushes by the front entrance, possibly some punk and emo kids (the hair and black make-up giving them away) hanging around a bench under the towering oak tree, some other average groups, and various loners dotting the area – like that really good-looking blonde guy leaning against the school building by himself. He had a bored expression on his handsome face, just like a lot of other people as they toiled their free time away before the bell rang. She saw him staring off into space when he suddenly noticed he was being watched by the way his eyes flickered towards her. She turned away before she could be caught.

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw a cocky-looking boy walk up to a girl with a sunny, yellow scrunchy around her wrist. At first, Namine thought it was a little odd as the boy seemed all tough and arrogant bending forward towards the girl and causing her to back up several paces. Whatever the case, Namine could tell that they were not boyfriend and girlfriend. She saw the brunette girl cringe. They weren't even friends, Namine realized, he was the bully and she was the victim by the way they were acting.

Namine itched to step forward, but thought better after remembering Hayner's earlier words and her little vow to try fitting in. She was prepared to keep her distance when the visions bombarded her mind and flashed before her eyes again for the second time that morning.

Namine saw the same girl, probably years younger, getting bullied and then thrown against the ground and trampled on. But always, the light sunny smile and her cheery face never wavered.

Then a more recent image flashed before her – the smile was still the same; only her pale body lay drenched by the pattering rain in a dark, dirty alley. Namine blinked, snapping out of her trance. She couldn't tell if it ever even took place.

But frankly, she couldn't give a flying fig. Here she was, standing around, the only person bothering to look in their direction – and she was doing absolutely nothing to help the poor girl. And it wasn't because she was scared to get hurt. She was scared because she thought she wouldn't fit in afterwards. Just whom was she trying to impress? It made Namine feel like she was being a selfish pig – something she was not used to feeling. She felt like she was lower than the bully himself.

Her eyes were hard as she watched the gangster-like blonde boy as he traced the vivid scar line between his contentious eyes. The instant she heard him speak, Namine knew she wouldn't be able to stand him if she ever saw him again.

"Hey, bird-brain. You ready to answer my request from the other day?" he sneered.

The sunny brunette seemed so strained holding that smile, though Namine was sure she was fighting the urge to frown, "Sorry, Seifer. But I'll have to say no."

"No, you don't have an answer, or no, you won't agree," Seifer scoffed rudely, "You're as air-headed as ever, bitch."

"My name is Selphie," the smiling girl said simply. She added after regaining some courage, "And no, I don't want to follow your request."

Seifer's sneer curled even more, "You're just a girl though. I can make you do anything."

Selphie shook her head and turned away. She mumbled more to herself than to him, almost as if she was convincing herself, "You can't make me do anything."

Namine watched sullenly as she struggled to contain the rage that twisted harrowingly in her gut. She tried to stand still and reason with herself whether it was a good idea to break up the fight now. She was hoping Selphie would just walk away – and Selphie was starting to walk away when Seifer suddenly grabbed a fistful of her brown hair and shook her. He brought his lips to her ear to whisper something nasty despite the Selphie's attempts to free herself.

When he didn't let go, even as the school bell rang, Namine found herself walking towards them. Even as her logical self tried to convince her that she was making a big mistake butting into other people's business, Namine knew she couldn't let the bully continue, even if she felt like she was doing something stupid. But for now, grabbing Seifer's iron wrist seemed like the only thing she could do to stop him.

"What do you think you're doing?' Namine asked him coolly.

"Mind your own business," he spat before turning his cruel eyes on her. He looked her up and down, "On the other hand, I wouldn't mind minding yours if you know what I mean."

Namine recoiled inside from such an offer, but she was relentless as she narrowed her penetrating eyes, "How about you let her go first?"

Seifer smirked and let go of Selphie's spunky brown locks. He dropped his hands into his pockets and tilted his head to the side mockingly, "I'm all yours, sweet 'ums."

But Namine just ignored him, turning her attention back to Selphie, "Hey, are you going to be okay?"

Selphie nodded, her hair bobbing as she gave her an anxious smile, "I'll be fine. Thank you," she tugged at Namine's arm, "Quickly, let's go. We'll be late for class."

Namine's eyes softened as she nodded back. But another vision brushed her inner eye. Reacting before she even knew what she was doing, Namine jolted in front of Selphie, her momentum changing suddenly. The next thing she did know though, was the sharp snap of her face to the side and the numbing sting on the left side of her face as she fell to the ground.

Staggering as she quickly righted herself on her feet, Namine clutched a hand to her face, trying to stop the crazy spinning in her head. She blinked back some blurriness filming her vision and felt momentarily confused when she tasted a salty metallic taste in her mouth.

Selphie pulled her back quickly and examined Namine's face, asking if she could hear her. Numbly, Namine nodded, trying to squeeze the pain away by blinking the many stars she saw out of her eyes. On the other hand, Seifer stepped away with a strange expression, obviously having missed his target for the first time. He turned without a word and sauntered back towards a group of unruly kids before they talked a bit more before heading towards one of the side entrances.

Namine felt the numbing shock wearing off as her balance. She took her hand away from her tender cheek and stared incredulously after Seifer and his gang of egotistical freak-of-natures. Not one of them even cast her or Selphie a second look. She could feel the blood trickle from a corner of her mouth before she wiped it on the back of her hand hastily. It was a good thing that all her teeth were in tact, or else there would have been more hell to pay.

"Um…"

Namine looked at Selphie apologetically, "Sorry about that, I just feel a little sick. Selphie, right?" Selphie nodded quickly. Namine tried to smile, but could only grimace slightly when it hurt, "Cool name. I'm Namine – nice to meet you."

Selphie finally began to smile again, but this time, it was genuine as she took to Namine immediately, "Namine, thank you for helping me back there," Selphie pursed lips together, "But I think we should get the nurse to look at your face. I'm really sorry that you got dragged into something like this." She took Namine by the arm and led her inside the school.

As they passed the administration office, Namine began to protest, "W-wait! I still need to get my schedule."

"Don't worry about that right now. The nurse is really awesome, he'll give you a pass," she winked, "Besides, you can't waltz through the principal's door all banged up and mangled, right?"

Namine tried to laugh without stretching her sore jaw too much, "I suppose not. Anyway," she paused, "Did you say 'he'?"

Selphie nodded her head enthusiastically, "Oh yeah, Irvine's the best! He's even one of the school's counselors, so if it weren't for him, I'd have lost my mind already."

"I see," Namine grinned nervously, "This is a first. I've never seen a male nurse before." She tried to chase the image of an old, hairy man dressed in the typical white nurse getup. She wondered if he wore bright red lipstick too. Namine shuddered slightly.

"Cold?" Selphie asked, having mistaken Namine's reaction, "It is a bit chilly. I don't know why this school decides to dry freeze its student sometimes. The AC's on full force even during winter, you know?"

Seeing as the school was bigger than it looked on the outside (and that was saying a lot), and they didn't seem to be reaching the nurse's ward anytime soon, Namine spoke up, "So what's the nurse like?"

Selphie suddenly clasped her hands together and threw them up in the air as she spun around while walking, "He's nice, sweet, and really handsome! Trust me, you'll like him too." Namine had to stop walking to avoid getting hit in the face a second time.

"Handsome, eh?" asked a new voice from around a corner.

Before Namine could even turn around, she saw Selphie jump and go red in an instant. Namine would have laughed if her face didn't hurt so much when she did. Her eyes finally shifted to the man standing behind them. He looked too old to be a student, but too young to be a teacher too. That made him fall somewhere in between a university student or a grad student.

She was mentally guessing why he was in the building when he snapped his fingers before her face.

"Hey there beautiful, anybody in there?"

Namine blinked, but managed a half smile, "Right here. You are?" She couldn't be too sure as to who this cow-boy-like man was.

"Irvine's the name," he winked one honest brown eye at her and swept a long brown lock from his face. It almost looked like he just saluted her with an invisible hat, "The handsome nurse of Twilight High if you will."

Namine's jaw would have dropped to the ground if it were possible, "N-nurse?"

Selphie seemed to have recovered and nodded brightly, "Hey Irvine, perfect timing. We need you to help clean Namine up."

Irvine rolled his eyes jokingly, "Oh dear, another one. I didn't notice."

Namine blushed without really knowing why. The heated flush rose from the contours of her neck and colored her cheeks automatically. Her face was just really embarrassing to look at in its bruising condition. Why did she always have to look her worst whenever an attractive guy approached her? It was like the cosmos, or whatever was out there wanted her to stay single forever.

Then again, she wasn't really looking for another half anyway. It didn't matter, she convinced herself.

Irvine told them to follow him to the health office as he walked past them. Namine trailed behind as Selphie trotted to Irvine's side to strike up some conversation. The two of them chatted animatedly, both of them as comfortable as a pair of old friends. Namine just couldn't bring herself to join in since she couldn't find any reason to.

Once inside the closure of the dull ward, Namine saw Irvine throw on the white medical coat and collapse into his chair by the desk. He hummed a tune and jotted some things down on a form, occasionally sneaking looks at her or Selphie. The whole time, Namine couldn't look away. She could only conclude that she was going nuts, or that Seifer's punch had slowed her brain somehow. The way Irvine kept inspecting her face made her feel embarrassed – so it had to be his fault. He was supposed to help her mentality, not inflict it!

"So Namine," Irvine said looking up momentarily to get some eye contact, "You're new, huh? Must be tough around here." He shot a quick glance at Selphie.

Namine agreed, just to show that her brain wasn't really turning into jelly, "It is. Happens every time, you know?" Well, it felt kind of hard to speak. And for some reason, she found that her words sounded odd even to her. She couldn't tell if she was having a concussion or suffering from a bleeding brain.

"Getting beat up?" Irvine asked with concern as he handed her a note.

Namine muttered a thank you as she accepted and looked over the writing. It was a pass and excuse for the office. Her eyes flicked up at him before looking away with a twinge of shyness under his intense gaze, "No, I meant being new."

She sensed his good-natured grin without having to see it, "I sympathize with you. But I think it'll blow over really fast here. We've got some very friendly people here who would be willing to take care of you." He smiled at a brightly colored Selphie, "Will you take Namine to the office after I patch her up, Selph?"

"Yup, no problem, Irvine!" Selphie chirped quickly.

Namine's breath caught in her throat as Irvine drew near and prodded the bone around her rapidly bruising cheek. He frowned when she winced visibly and told her seriously, "If you don't mind telling me now, I'd like to know what happened." He flicked on a penlight to study her eyes, checking for any signs of a serious concussion.

Namine gulped nervously and looked over at Selphie. The slighter girl gave her a nod, her green eyes never wavering. It seemed Selphie trusted Irvine enough, so it had to be okay. Didn't Selphie also say he was a counselor? That meant he had a confidentiality oath, she assured herself. "It was just some bully. I think Seifer was his name."

Irvine's brows clashed together as he bent forward in his chair. "Again?" he wondered out loud. Selphie nodded, "Yes, but he was picking on me. Namine just happened by and tried to help. She was amazing, having the courage to butt heads with a guy like him but…" the brunette cast defeated eyes on Namine, "I'm still really, really sorry, Nami."

Namine felt a little shocked at receiving nickname already, but she didn't mind, "Selphie, it's really okay. I know what it's like getting bullied your whole life."

It was Selphie's turn to be shocked. Her pink lips popped open a bit in surprise, "H-how did you know?"

"It's uh…" Namine mentally reminded herself to strangle her at home after school, "It's just experience! Lucky guess and all…"

Selphie and Irvine seemed to accept it after a moment of exchanging glances. Namine sighed inwardly and looked expectantly at Irvine. He gave her a questioning look before remembering what he was doing, "Right, I'll get you some salve and ice to take down the swelling. And take a painkiller too – it's Advil. Or do you have any ill side effects? I still need to dig up your medical form – I know I've seen it somewhere." He handed her a blue liquid gel pill from an Advil bottle in the medicine cabinet, "If the pain persists, come back here and I'll give you another one. If you feel sick at any time – dizziness or nausea – I'll help you deck out whatever else is wrong." He made quick work of her injury and handed Selphie her own pass. After giving Namine a final check, Irvine winked and shooed them out of his office.

"He's pretty friendly," Namine said once she and Selphie had a cleared the health ward.

Selphie smiled, "Yeah, he is, isn't he?" She turned to Namine, an energetic bounce in her step as she led them towards the front of the school, "And make sure you do go to him if you're still feeling sick, okay? I know how far Seifer goes when he gets violent. He and that gang of self-proclaimed punishers of the school can get downright dirty."

"What do you mean?" Namine asked her new friend.

"They think they can do whatever suits them around the town and the school. Mostly, they pick on little kids or other peers, but I've seen them pick on the elderly too. It's just their thing, picking on people who don't have a chance against them," Selphie shook her head sullenly. She halted before making them backtrack ten paces, "Oops, we almost missed it."

Namine followed Selphie's pointing finger at a large gothic looking bronze door braced between tall dark glass windows. She couldn't see how they'd almost miss it since it was so staggering – her brain really must have been flunking.

"If it's not the door then it's the windows that give it away. Just go inside, check in, and get your schedule. The staff's pretty lenient, but kind of forgetful so remember to pick up a map on the counter in case they don't give you one. The school's huge and pretty maze-like at first," Selphie looked like she was going to babble on, but managed to stop herself in time, "Anyway, I need to go. If we're in any classes together, I'll always be there beside you if you need me. Otherwise, you can find me wherever. See you around, Nami! Good luck!" Selphie waved before she skipped away down the lengthy, spacious hall and around the curving corner.

Namine kicked at the granite floor nervously. It took her a moment to realize that she couldn't dawdle all day. Quietly, she pushed open the doors just as the secretary saw her come in. The lady welcomed her warmly and helped her sort things out, putting Namine more at ease. Selphie was right on both accounts, so Namine had to slip a map from the polished alabaster counter on her way out.

Also, the school wasn't like a maze. It was a freaking labyrinth.

Namine spent the next fifteen minutes wandering around, trying to make heads or tails with the map. Her roller blades kept slipping from her shoulder, so much that she had to keep stopping to distribute its weight properly. She wished she knew where her new locker was so she could drop them off. Trying to hurry and balance her things all at the same time, she thought that must have looked quite strange with her melting ice pack plastered to the side of her face and the map held awkwardly before her. She could almost see herself as the Hunchback of Notre Dame.

"Well, don't you seem lost," someone said suddenly.

"Oh!"

Namine staggered back, dropping her map in fright. She could have sworn that she didn't see or hear anybody in front of her, or in the entire hallway. She looked up into a pair of sky blue eyes as she fumbled blindly to pick up her map again. He looked familiar – styled but messy blonde hair, cool attitude – he had been the loner boy by the school wall. But instead of looking apathetic this time, he shot her a bewildered look, as if she had just grown three heads on the spot.

As Namine stood again, she looked him over quickly. He was definitely the same good-looking loner she saw on the school grounds earlier. His messy gilded hair was several shades darker than her own, reminding her just how lifeless she must have looked. And as lean and handsome as he was, the way he stared down at her with such a serious look in his sky blue eyes made her stomach twist anxiously. Everything about him radiated a chilly self-confidence, keeping her on her toes. But he was a little pale looking under his slight tan, just not as pale as she was. Maybe he was sick?

Seeing that he was still staring frozenly at her, Namine asked with some concern, "Are you all right? I just came back from the nurse – I can take you to him if you'd like. He's really kind."

The boy flinched violently, backing away when she touched his shoulder. Namine also snatched her hand back when he moved so suddenly. The boy stared suspiciously at her, "What are you? You're not supposed to know I'm here. You shouldn't even be able to touch me."

Namine coughed awkwardly, "I beg your pardon. Why's that?" The boy was getting stranger by the second in her book. Maybe he was a mental case.

Besides, he didn't have to be that much a loner, right? She was only trying to be polite.

He stared at her for a long moment.

"I'm supposed to be dead."

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A/N: Please drop me a comment or a review! I would not like to receive flames though, thanks. After working hard on my stories, I would appreciate plenty of feedback. So as pleased as I am to know that people favorite my stories – please don't just list my stuff and not leave me a comment. I do get around to reading everyone's reviews (because I love hearing from you guys,) and I almost always reply back. So, please do me the favor, and thank you!

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Question of the Chapter:

What is your zodiac sign? (Greek or Chinese, or even both)

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My Answer:

I'm a Sagittarius Archer born in the year of a Black Horse.

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