Chapter One: Good bye

2003 Canada

The sky was a murky brown colour, with no signs of the sun ever coming out from underneath the dark clouds. It wasn't unusual to see the dark cloudy sky in Guelph, Canada, but today, the clouds seemed like an omen, telling me it's a bad idea to leave.

"Well isn't this depressing?" I muttered to myself as my mother gave urgent instructions to someone on the phone, at the same time telling the taxi driver to go faster. I rolled down my window and let the cold October wind hit my face like thousands of small knives, listening to the wind as we sped through the Free Way. I counted each car that past by us; wondering how many unfortunate souls are driving on the only road towards the airport.

"S-K-Y-L-O-R!" my mother pronounced every saleable of my name clearly. "Close your window! It's cold outside!"

I obeyed without the thought of arguing with her, and I saw a sad-almost regretful look cross my mom's face, almost as if she felt sorry for me. My dad sitting in the back seat with me patted my back. I know that they are trying to get on my good side after declaring their move to one of the most crowded cities in the world, Beijing. Somehow, somewhere in my memory, I saw Beijing's tall buildings; its sea of people, and a fancy house. It seemed like something I saw from a commercial, but so much more real than that. I could smell the dust coated air, I could feel people's coats brushing against mine as I pushed through the crowd, and I could taste the sweet aroma of beautiful roses coming from that house that I knew belonged to me.

"Sky..." my mom interrupted my thoughts. "I am sorry you have to leave your life and friend behind and move to China but this is going to be great! We have a big house in Beijing in the nicest neighbourhoods! You're going to love it!" she said the word 'love' with more enthusiasm than needed. Her expression looked like she was on an infomercial- with a smile that was too big for her face selling a product that no one will buy, and she knew it. She still puts on her most brilliant smile trying to convince people to buy something that she knows it is useless, dragging people into the lie. I almost felt sorry for her. Even thought she is the CEO for a computer software company, she is as lost as ever when it comes to me.

Now that I think back on the things that happened in the past few months, I honestly only have one thing to say, HOW? How could I be stupid enough to entrust the rest of my life on such a silly thing like a coin toss, how could I have taken my future so lightly? As if moving half way across the world is something that can be decided on a whim. However, after months of fighting over this subject, a coin toss was the only compromise; leaving everything to fate. As I watched the coin flip in the air, I could not help but wonder about the big city, I could not help but think that it would be a shame to stay in this town. As the coin finally fell to the ground, I could not help but feel relieved that I had lost, but as my oh-so-daring-mother yelled "HA! I win! And you're going to Beijing with me no matter what!" with too much enthusiasm, I suddenly remembered what I set out to do, I reminded myself that I was against the idea of moving, that I wanted to stay where I am now and be happy with it, so I stormed off into the woods near my house.

The woods are a familiar place to me, almost like a second home-the tall, ancient trees, the soft, moist earth, and the soothing quietness, with little animals living in their own paradise. I had spent a lot of time here when I was a kid, playing with the little animals, watching the flowers and plants grow and die as the seasons past. I haven't been here in a long time; I tried to avoid this place. Ever since I was little, I had a bad feeling about the woods, it holds a danger that I never knew of before. I could faintly remember a boy, playing with me in the woods when I was little. We would always go exploring, each day we would go further and deeper in. Maybe it's because of the boy that I never go in the wood anymore, because I remember, one day, the boy disappeared.

The boy should be older than me I can't remember. He was my neighbour, our parents where good friends, so they always left us together for play dates and stuff. I am sure he was very much annoyed with me because he always seemed so mature and I'm just a little kid. But as time passed, we slowly became friends. I think he told me his name once, but I can't remember that either. Nor what he looked like, in fact I don't have much memories of him or my childhood at all. All I remember about the mysterious boy was that he had beautiful silver hair, and dark blue eyes like mine, and that he was very kind to me. I remember on my eighth birthday, the boy just disappeared, and not long after, his parents moved as well. I was sad for a long time after he left, but as time passed, I met other kids my age and made many new friends. Even then, I still went by the woods everyday to see if he would be there, but he never came. Slowly as time passed, my memories of him started to fade, and I thought about him less and less... until he became just a fragment of my imagination. I sometimes think to myself, was there ever a boy with silver hair, or, did I really make him up. I banished all thoughts of ever seeing him again. I knew that was impossible. Now the only proof I have of the silver haired boy was a voo-doo doll he gave me before he left. The doll is very cute, small; it wears a red witch's hat and a red dress. Well that's not much of a proof at all; anyone could have given me the doll, it was 10 years ago, but even so, that little doll is my treasure.

"Skylor! Snap out of it! We're at the airport! We can't miss our flight!" my mom yelled while stepping out of the cab. "Get the luggage out of the trunk!" she called over to my dad.

My mom had always been fierce, commanding; she was a born leader, a woman of power. She had single handily brought my father's computer company Neon to life. She is strict about everything, moulding everything and everyone around her into perfection. I don't think there is anything in the world that will stop her from doing the things she wants. Ever since she married my father, she has devoted her whole life on making Neon the greatest computer software company in the world, and her next step is Asia, that's why we are moving to China, to make her dreams come true. that's just it, it's always about her dreams, we did everything to make my mom's dreams come true. I guess that's a good thing if you think about it; she is the only one in this family who have a dream. My father-on the other hand-is laid-back, more so than anyone I know, more so then my mom would have liked.

I looked at the last remaining bags, taped and roped securely together. I remembered how big my room looked the last time I saw it. Big, empty, and gone of any life, it seemed hollow, lonely even, my gray blue walls where clean, gone off all the posters I put up. I remember arguing with the housekeeper about how I wanted 'Royal blue' for my walls, the kind that matched my eyes, but instead he got me this ugly gray blue colour with a hint of turquoise in it.

Our house had looked abandoned; dusty corners, empty shelves, closets. The wall that used to be filled with portraits, and weird fossils, where now just another wall, with nothing but light rectangular squares left by the art works. Everything was neatly stacked in boxes, and being loaded into the last truck. The taxi waited at the front.

"I'm really going to miss this place..." I sighed, looking up at the tall, fancy airport. Listening to the planes fly over me. No matter how small and how unpopulated Guelph is, it was still my home for 16 years, and 16 years is a long time for you to attach yourself to something.

"S-K-Y-L-O-R!" I jumped at the sound of my own name.

I looked up and saw my mom's eyes on me, with a displeased look on her face.

"How many times are you going to space out today? We have a plan to catch!" usually, I would do my best to put up the argument of her life, but now I just prayed for this day to be over. Hope that when I wake up, I would be back in my ugly gray blue room.

As my eyes focused, I realized my parents were already across the street standing in front of the big doors of the airport waiting for me. I quickly closed the taxi door and ran towards them.

The plane smelled bad. I sat in the first class section with my parents, surrounded by people on their laptops and cell phones. My mom was on her Black Berry checking her schedule, arranging for people to pick us up at the airport in Beijing. My dad looked prepared to go to sleep-lying back into his seat, with his feet up on the footrest and a newspaper in his hand. I looked around me, and took inventory of everything; there where 10 people in first class, five of them where very old, in their 60's, with gray hair. Six of them were putting their thing away. Two were my age, or looked like it, they both were boys, and they looked as bored as me-that was good to know. One woman was wearing more jewellery than I ever owned in my entire life-and I think I owned a LOT.

Planes don't bother me as much as the food on it. I paid A LOT of money for first class seats. Can't they feed us something better, than food that smells so bad that makes me barf!

The long plane ride-about 12houres and 35min to be exact-gave me lots of time to think about things, fanaticising about my new life. Would the people in my school like me? Would they think I am weird? In truth, I never physically fit in anywhere. Sometimes I seriously think my parents adopted me. How can my parents-who fit to be on the cover of "Beautiful and Blond"-have a kid like me? My dark brown hair that's closer to black than anything is, with my natural reddish brown highlights, my royal blue eyes- ten shades darker then my mom's gray blue ones-with circles around the rim that are dark as coal. My mother's soft light hair has beautiful natural waves, but mine are strait and thick. I look noting like my parents, I look like I belong on the cover of 'Emo Weekly'. "You are beautiful in your own way." That's my mom's line when I ask why I couldn't be blond like her.

After a few hours of torturous plane ride, I put my headphones on, blasted the music, trying to turn out the outside world, and drifted to sleep.

In my dream I was standing in a white, colourless world, with no one in sight, as I wonder around looking for a way out, I found a tall fence stretching for as far as the eye could see on both sides of me. There was no gate and no exit, no matter how far I run, or in which direction I run, there was only the fence surrounding me inside the endless circle. I screamed at the top of my lungs but here was no one there to answer me. I was lost in complete and utter nothingness, a thick fog started to filling in the emptiness around me, somewhere deep inside my heart, I knew I was waiting for someone to take me away, but who am I waiting for? Where was I going? I had no answers to. As I wonder around and around in the emptiness. I heard someone crying.

"Who's crying?" I called. That's when I saw the figure of a little boy dressed in a white robe standing in front of me. As I got closer, I could see that he was about the same age as me, "Who are you? Please tell me why you are crying?" As I saw his face when he turned around, I froze in shock, his face twisted in a mask of pain, and sadness, yet he was still beautiful, his golden eyes so familiar. His slim body shaking as he sobbed, making me want to go up to him and hug him so tightly he could break, yet my feet glued to the ground. I know he was the one that I was waiting for, yet I feel like I want to run away from him, I asked why he was crying, but somewhere inside my heart, I knew the answer. Now I had no control over my body, and my legs are moving towards the boy without my command, as if I was drown to him. As I came closer, he stopped crying, but his eyes filled with so much loneliness, and sadness, my heart was breaking just by looking at him. I walked slowly towards him, stretching out my arms as I embraced him lovingly, and he buried his head into my shoulders, his lovely brown hair sparkled gold in the light. The minute I touched him, it answered all of my questions, he needed me, and I needed him, plain and simple.

"Sky!" My father's voice broke through my dreams I woke with a gasp. "Skylor! Put your seat belts on! There's a Storm outside!"

Then I heard it, the loud crash of thunder, and the wild turbulence rocking the plane. I feel like I'm in a small raft on the endless ocean, the waves controlled everything, including my life and death. I trembled as I struggled to pull the seat belt from under me. We were dropping, I know because I got that weird feeling in my stomach, the kind you get on a rollercoaster going down the hill. The plane was rocking harder now, there were screams coming from all around me; small children crying, girls screaming and tucking their heads into their mother's arms. The two boys that where my age where sitting in their seats, looking like two statues, trying to be brave I guess. Out of all the things I thought about today, I never once thought what I would do if the plane crashed. What would happen, if I died? The screaming came louder as the plane rocked harder. The lights suddenly flashed on and off, another wave of screams came, and I screamed at the top of my lungs along with everyone else. It went on. The screaming, the rocking, the flashing lights, the crying, the prying, and the screaming for help, all blended into one sound; a terrible cry of horror.

I never considered how I would die; people usually don't think about these things. And i sure prefer to have a positive out look on life. But out of all the ways to go, I did not want to disappear in the air, or lost in the endless oceans underneath us. The plane shook violently as it finally stopped falling and everything went black. There was a long stretched out silence-so long it was tormenting-as everyone waited for the next crash, but there was nothing. Another long moment passed, still nothing. Then it happened, at first there was only a little crackling sound, as if some little monster was nibbling on the metal of the plane-as if it was a prediction of more disasters that will follow. Suddenly we started falling again, loud screams came from all around me, in the black nothingness, I felt a hand-a very calm and warm hand grabbing my arm, lifting me from my seat as I drifted into unconsciousness.

I was drowning, a strange force pulling me down into the deep waters. Pain pulled me further and further into the black nothingness. The pain came in waves, crushing my body down; faintly I could hear a voice calling my name. I could feel the warm hands touching my cold arm. In a swift second, I saw a face, small like a child's, with beautiful blue eyes and hair sliver as the moon light. He was calling me, telling me to follow him. I tried desperately to move my legs but everything was numb. As swiftly, as it came, everything was gone; I was back in the darkness. I tried to get up and chase after that warm hand, that tiny ray of light that reflected off his silver hair, but I couldn't feel my legs, or my arm, or any other parts of my body, I called for help, but my voice was stuck inside me. There was nothing now, leavening me alone in the utter deep, black pool of water.