My life was never very interesting. Living in the same place for the last ten years had made everything seem the same, every day more of the same repetitive pattern, with minor changes. But I was comfortable in the pattern, unwilling to move on from my niche. I was happy.
Then he came and changed my life. And that was why I was standing here, looking through a window, on what was surely going to end with my death. But nothing would make me regret letting him into my life. He had changed the pattern, and for that I was grateful. For those few months I was able to see how my life could have been.
I closed my eyes and opened the door.
Chapter one: New Student
I opened the door and suppressed a grin as I saw what greeted me. Snow. The first proper snow I had seen in years, ever since I had moved from Wales, and that was ten years ago now. I closed the door and turned back to the shoes cupboard. It looked like I wouldn't be wearing ballet flats today. Instead I pulled out a pair of flat black boots and tugged them on, slipping them over my blue skinny jeans.
I walked back into the hallway and grabbed my beanie hat from where it hung on the end of the staircase and looked up the stairs. My brother was just coming out of his bedroom door.
"Hey Matt, it's snowed!" I shouted to him. He came charging down the stairs and smiled up at me.
"Really! Do you think school will be closed?" I smiled at his exuberance and reached across to ruffle his short brown hair. Matt was ten years old, but he wasn't tiny. I could see him catching up on me, height wise, and could see that it would not be long until he was able to look me straight in the eye. I suppressed a sigh. I wasn't exactly tiny; I think that 5 foot 5 is a perfectly reasonable height for an eighteen year old. But having my ten year old brother only 7 inches behind me was a bit concerning.
"I doubt it Matt. They had your school open when it was hailing down. I doubt 4 inches of snow would stop them from opening for the day. And it's only a ten minute walk anyway." I saw his face fall slightly as he considered my words. Frowning he turned his back on me he walked into the kitchen, probably to moan at mum about the fact he would have to go to school on a snow day. I smiled again and jammed my hat onto my head. I pulled my coat from the pile which was growing under the stairs and put it on, grateful for the warmth.
"Mum, I'm leaving now," I shouted to my mother as I walked out of the door. I faintly heard her saying goodbye before the frosty wind slammed the door shut. I turned and locked the door behind me, then pressed my car keys. The lights on my beat up old Ford Fiesta lit up, and I walked slowly towards it, savouring the feel of the snow on my face. I climbed into the car, and put the keys in the ignition. I was so grateful that I could drive now. I had got my full license a couple of days after my eighteenth birthday, but it was only a month ago that I'd been able to afford to get myself a car. Now I was able to drive to college, rather than waiting for the public bus which was so unreliable. Of course downsides came with the fact that I was one of the few in my group of friends who owned a car. I was always the one who drove when we went out. But at least now I could decide what time I would get to college.
About ten minutes later I was parked in the student parking, as far away from the buildings as I could be. I wanted to walk through the snow, to feel its soft touch on my face. As I got out of the car I noticed a new car in the parking lot. It was a shiny silver Volvo, an S60 R. It stood out in the mix of old and battered cars, the only things that most students at QMC could afford. I noticed the shiny flawless paint job, which had no scratches. It looked like who ever owned it cared about it. I sighed enviously. What I wouldn't do for a fast car like that. I walked slowly through the snow, taking the outdoors route to my first class of the day; Modern History.
As I tripped through the door I noticed that there was a new student talking to Martin, our lecturer. She was small, about 5 foot 2, and had spiky black hair. That wasn't the first thing that I noticed, though. She was absolutely gorgeous. Pale, flawless skin, golden eyes and a perfect pixie bow mouth. Her head moved towards where I was standing in the door for a fraction of a second, and then turned back to Martin. She nodded a couple of times, then stepped aside as Martin moved to stand in front of the group. I hurried to my seat at the back of the room, next to my friend Kerry, and took my hat and coat off, hanging them on the radiator behind me.
"Right is everyone here?" Martin asked the group as he looked around. When we nodded as a group he started speaking to the girl again. "You can go sit in one of the empty spaces, then." She nodded and walked gracefully to the empty seat next to me. I was surprised. I would have expected a girl who looked like her to have chosen to sit next to one of the other good looking girls. Girls like that tend to group together in the classroom, and the group in our history class had a spare seat on the end of their area. I was also surprised by the way she walked. It didn't even look like she was walking. It was almost like dancing. She was a sports person, obviously, because that amount of grace wasn't natural.
As she sat down Greg on her other side started to turn towards her, but when she looked directly at him he shuffled away. That looked odd to me, because I could see nothing wrong with her.
"Right folks, settle down. Now today we are going to be looking at the anti-war movement in USA in the 1960's in response to the Vietnam War. Open your textbooks to page 234 please." Martin turned towards the whiteboard and began to write random words spread out across it. I turned my attention to my book and pulled a couple of sheets of blank paper from my binder. I noticed that the girl next to me didn't have a textbook, only a binder and paper.
"Um, do you want to share my book? Since you don't have one?" I asked her quietly as Martin turned back to look at the class.
"Thank you," she said, and looked at me for a few moments, as if she hadn't expected anyone to offer her anything. "My name is Alice Cullen."
"Hi Alice, My name is Rebecca, but everyone just calls me Bex" I said as Martin shushed the class. I smiled at her, and then turned to the textbook.
It was a little while later before I could talk to Alice again. It seemed like I was the only one who was bothered about talking to this new girl who had moved into our class halfway through the year. I was interested in the reasons for joining our class so late into the second year of A levels. But I didn't understand why no one else was interested. Greg hadn't looked at her again. No one had after the initial 'who is that'. Martin had sent us taking notes from the textbook after lecturing to us for close to half hour.
"So Alice, how come you moved to Basingstoke?" I asked her as I turned the page to the next section. She smiled at me again, and I was struck with how pixie like she was. A beautiful pixie though.
"My father got a job at the hospital here after my mother decided that she wanted to get out of America," she said as she looked down at the page to copy down some more notes. I was shocked by how many notes she had made, and how neat they were. My own notes were a mess that I would have to type up later if I wanted to be able to use them when the exams came around. The bell rang then, surprising me. I hadn't realised that so much time had passed. I stood up and put my binder and textbook into my backpack, while reaching behind me to see if my hat had dried out at all. It had a bit. "Thank you for letting me share your book. I will have to get one before the next lecture." Alice's high pixie voice interrupted my train of thought. I smiled at her.
"That's fine, honestly. Do you know where your next class is?" I asked, unsure if she would know. With a campus as big as QMC it was easy to get lost, as I had discovered on my first day, embarrassingly having to stop loads of people in the middle of the hallway to find out where the English block was.
"Yes, I am meeting someone at the entrance to the cafeteria. But I am not sure where that is," she said, her face puckering up slightly.
"I have a free period now, if you want me to take you there," I said as I pulled on my coat and hat.
"Thank you, again. I like your hat," she said as she too pulled on a coat which had been draped across the back of her chair. I blushed slightly at the compliment and smiled at her. She seemed like a really nice person. Too bad no one wanted to give her the time of the day. We walked out of the room towards the door to the outside. The snow had built up again, and I couldn't wait to get out into it. Alice walked out of the door after me and giggled as the snow hit her. "Just wondering, but why are we going outside?"
"Oh sorry Alice, we can go the inside way if you want. I just like being out when it snows like this, because we haven't had snow in so long." I smiled apologetically and began to turn around to go back inside.
"No, don't worry I like being outside."
Me and Alice got to the cafeteria a few minutes later. The outside route was so much quicker, and I knew that after I had dropped her with her friend then I would have to stop in the cafeteria to get something to eat. I was starving, and I'd only had breakfast two hours ago. As we went around the corner I saw someone standing underneath the shelter which covered the entrance. As we got closer he turned around, and I was surprised once more. The guy that Alice had come to meet was incredibly attractive, he looked like he wouldn't be out of place on a movie set as the leading man. He had honey blond hair, and was tall and muscular. I could see that, even though he was wearing a big coat. Alice danced forward the last few steps and put her arms around him. He hugged her back, and then looked over her shoulder at me curiously. Alice turned around, keeping her arm around him to look back at me. He was obviously her boyfriend that much I could see from the way his arm was wrapped tightly around her waist, from the way he looked at her. I sighed. Did everyone have partners or boyfriends? I swear, I was the only one in my group of friends who didn't have anyone, and that really got to me at times. They were all so loved up.
"Thank you Bex for showing me how to get here. Bex, this is Jasper, Jazz this is Bex," I smiled at Jasper and noticed that he had exactly the same shade eyes, the same pale skin.
"Are you sure you are going to be alright getting to your lesson?" Alice nodded at me. "Okay then, I'll see you later then," Alice smiled and the two of them began to walk away down the path. Before they left I noticed a slight incredulous look in Jasper's eyes. I was slightly confused by this, but I shook it off and pulled my phone out. I knew that my best friend had a free period at this time now, because he was in most of my classes, so I text him, asking if he wanted to grab something to eat. He text back almost straight away saying that he was on his way. I replaced my phone in my pocket and looked back out at the snow. Something about the past few minutes bugged me. It took me a little while before I realised what it was. After meeting Jasper, Alice had walked with him purposefully away. It looked like she knew where she was going, but then why had she said she didn't know? It was confusing. The more I thought about it the more questions kept on popping into my head. How had she known that there was a way inside to the cafeteria? Why was everyone else avoiding her during our lesson? A pair of hands came down on my shoulders, frightening me. I hadn't been paying attention to my surroundings.
"What you thinking about so hard," Dale teased as we walked through the door. I just shook my head, and slipped my arm through his. This was how we always were. Lots of people mistook us as a couple, but it was totally platonic for both of us. Dale had a long term girlfriend who he was ecstatically happy with. We have always acted like this though, since we were in secondary school. Of course, some of it had something to do with the fact that I had serious balance issues. "Seriously, Bex, I've haven't seen you like this for ages. What's up?"
"Don't worry Dale, it's nothing, I was just.... thinking about what happened in Modern History today. You were in the class. Don't you think it's weird that no one else made the effort to talk to Alice? I mean she's gorgeous, I don't get why the boys who think they are all that didn't make an effort." The words burst out in a torrent as I tried to verbalise part of what I was thinking about. I wasn't going to tell him about the other stuff, about how she had acted after class. Even to me it sounded stupid. But I couldn't help the thoughts being there.
"I dunno. I think it might be that she's new, and they are intimidated, because they don't know if she has a big burly boyfriend. Or maybe it's the fact that she just seems a bit... off, you know, not quite right. There's something strange about her that just puts guys off." Dale said seriously. I poked him in the stomach and smiled as he overplayed the moaning.
"And how would you notice that Mr. "I am perfectly devoted to Leanne, I would NEVER notice any other girl" eh," I teased and laughed at the mock outraged face he pulled.
"I am devoted to her, I just noticed Alice. But c'mon, you gotta admit. There is something weird about Alice Cullen."