Prologue

Glenbard West HS, Glen Ellyn, IL

Insects, spiders, small things that moved. Nancy hated them and feared them. She was disgusted by the way they looked and was revolted by the way they moved and felt against your skin. That is why she loved shoes. Instant bug smashers. Effective too. She would squeal annoyingly every time she saw one. Even ants gave her the chills. Some people called her a wimp, others simply sympathized and said it was ok to be afraid. Either way, she still hated them and probably always would. In fact, on April 16, 2012, as she was walking to her study hall in Elliot Library, she was thinking about bugs. She didn't know why but she just had suddenly thought about the insects. But she quickly discarded the thought as she pushed through the double doors that lead to the library. About half her class was already sitting at the desks and tables in the middle of the room. She strode over to a small cubicle table and sat down. Last period of the day, finally! she thought. She was wearing dark blue skinny jeans, dark, multi-coloured shoes, a white t shirt and a black hoodie over that. They were all very warm and comfortable clothes, perfect for in-class snoozing.

The bell rung. Her friends started to quiet down at the command from the teacher. She slyly pulled her ipod from her pocket and unwound the head phones. Then, she pushed the headphones through her shirt leaving one bud in her ear and the other tucked inside her shirt. Finally, she put her head down in her arms, her left ear, the one with bud in it, tucked beneath her arm and she put away her ipod. She began to doze off.

For maybe fifteen minutes she slept some-what peacefully. But then, she was awoken. Her eyelid fluttered open. She didn't know what caused her to wake up. Except for the small beat of the Jessie J music coming from her ipod, the library was almost silent.

Then she felt it.

A slight tingling sensation in her left arm. She slowly lifted her head and looked at her left arm. Her hoodie was normal. She thought it must have been an itch. She scratched her arm briefly and put her head down right as the tingling sensation appeared again. She scratched her arm slightly more aggressively this time. But instead of the tingling going away, it moved down her arm.

Nancy pulled back her sleeve. She then screamed. Very loudly.

On her arm was a bug. A very large, bright, sickly red millipede. It had antenna that searched over her flesh on her arm. Its legs were weaving back and forth, and its mouth was leaking a disgusting yellow liquid. It had bit Nancy. Nancy had never seen anything like it. She shot up from her chair and started to smash her arm against the cubicle desk frantically. The first hit launched the millipede from her arm to the desk. The second hit hit the lower end of the bug squishing its abdomen to juice and sending its blood splattering over the desk. The third hit finished the insect's life as the rest of its body was pancaked into the desk. More blood flew from its body. There seemed to be a lot of it. Nancy stood, breathing heavily. She looked around, her face reddening with embarrassment. Everyone else in the library was staring.

A teacher came over and asked what was wrong. Nancy barely had time to answer before she fainted and fell to the ground.

Nancy had been rushed to the nurses office in wait of an ambulance. Once the ambulance had arrived and Nancy was taken to the hospital, she recovered from her shock of the insect incident. The doctors had looked over her and found nothing wrong. They said it was just shock and stress that caused her to faint and nothing to worry about. A day later she was released to go home. She went back to school and everything returned to normal. She was now, of course, terrified to go back to the library, but she had to and she made sure that she stayed as far as she could from the desk where the millipede decided to go for a visit with Nancy.