Prologue

Prince Edward Island, Canada

1905

I was so thankful for the rain because I was out of tears. I didn't care that I was soaked to the skin, out in the middle of one of the biggest storms I had ever seen. I blankly stared out across the ocean. The storm was whipping the surf into a frenzy and the enormous waves were pounding the side of the tall, red cliff I was standing on. But not even the howling winds and crashing waves could provide enough noise to drown out my father's words.

"You WILL marry him! I command it!"

I wrapped my arms tighter around my body trying to will myself into forgetting what had happened. What was going to happen. Marriage to a man I didn't love.

My body seemed to turn itself away from the violent surf even before I heard the sound. Was someone calling my name? I squinted into the darkness, toward the trees when I saw it – no, saw him. A vision of a boy more beautiful than anyone I had ever seen. He began to run to me, my brown eyes locked into his deep emerald ones and I felt myself jolt into my future:

Him, the achingly sweet boy, holding my hand on my parents' front porch swing.

Him, lifting up my silvery veil for our first married kiss.

Him, stroking the hair of our curly haired baby while she nursed at my breast.

Just a flash and I knew that he was my destiny. This boy was the one my heart insisted I wait for.

I felt my body shudder into the present and I stared back into the trees, seeing nothing but their branches thrashing in the wind. This vision was wrong, it wasn't real. I could feel my chest rip open with searing pain knowing all was lost. I squeezed my eyes closed as my arms released their grip around my body and fell down loosely to my sides. I took one small step back and fell into the sea.

My last thought was simple. My life was not worth living without him.