You're a monster too. And there's nothing you can do about it.

Although it was spring, Nancy Holbrook relished the East Bay's briskness. It was a far cry from the manicured feel of Springwood. UC Berkeley turned out to be a great fit for somebody of her artistic caliber. She had toyed with the idea of attending San Francisco State University. But Nancy felt that Berkeley was like a miniature San Francisco. It still had that intimate feel. Whenever she needed inspiration, Nancy visited the street vendors on Telegraph Avenue.

Berkeley transformed Nancy. The city and campus practically seeped into her bones. But on the outside, she still felt like that shy girl from Springwood. On a whim, she had her chestnut hair cut to shoulder-length with bangs. It was also dyed a dark red. Nancy experimented with makeup, sometimes wearing a light green eyeshadow. She started using nothing but hemp products, as it conditioned her hair from the harsh dyes. Instead of wearing long-sleeved shirts, Nancy instead covered her arms with jewelry. It was such a drastic transformation that Nancy's classmates told her that she looked like an art piece. Nancy laughed at their compliments: If the new look got her art showcased at the Berkeley Art Museum, why not?

Gwen, Nancy's mother, did not know what to think. While she was happy that her daughter was blossoming, Gwen also wondered if Nancy was experiencing an identity crisis. She had spent so many years sheltering Nancy from the truth. When the truth about Freddy Krueger exploded last year, Gwen wondered if Nancy could cope. Then, there was the strange business that involved Quentin Smith. Not to mention the deaths of Nancy's classmates. When Nancy got accepted into UC Berkeley, Gwen did not want her daughter moving to another state alone. So, as a compromise, Gwen moved with Nancy to Berkeley—though she let Nancy live on the campus.

Despite the work tensions between Gwen and the other doctors in her medical group, life was looking better. At least, Nancy was no longer having the nightmares.


Punctuality still was not Quentin Smith's best quality. Otherwise, he would not be running late to class again. On top of that, he was parked on the other side of the Ohio State University campus—requiring a farther-than-usual walk.

"Hey asshole, watch where you're fucking going!" yelled a jock that Quentin bumped into.

"Sorry man…won't happen again," said Quentin.

"You're that newspaper guy, right?" asked the jock.

"Yeah, I'm Quentin Smith."

"That article you wrote about the athletic department really sucked ass," said the jock.

Usually, Quentin had a retort. But given that he was already late for Political Science 25, Quentin let the comment pass.

"Whatever," said Quentin, as he continued to Derby Hall.

After class, Quentin planned to text Nancy. He often got confused about the time difference, which Nancy politely informed him of once. Quentin had called her in the middle of the night. Gwen did not know that they were still communicating with each other. She probably figured that once she and Nancy moved to Berkeley, Quentin would be out of the picture. That was the great thing about technology. It allowed Quentin and Nancy to maintain a long distance relationship.

But lately, Quentin started to feel left out. Nancy was in Berkeley. Not only was Berkeley amazing, but Nancy seemed to be changing before his eyes. He did not necessarily like Nancy's new look. But her face seemed to light up, so Quentin kept his peace. She also seemed more passionate about her art. Quentin was surprised that Nancy made friends. He remembered her as always being a standoffish loner. Last year, things did change though with Freddy Krueger. Maybe Nancy was finally living. Quentin felt conflicted. He felt selfish, but at the same time, he did not want to lose Nancy. She was the only person she had in what has proved to be a messed-up world.