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In the Eye of the Beholder
I can see when sombody's going to die. I know, really “Sixth Sense”, right? Although, technically, I don't see the dead people, and I can't tell how they're going to die. I can't tell if they're gonna off themselves, or get hit by a car. I mean, sheesh, I'm not a psychic! I just can look at whoever it is, and they're this shadow in their eyes. My stomach knots up, and I know so-and-so is going to die. Look, I'm not crazy, and I'm not hallucinating. All of this is true, so hear me out.
As proof, I have a couple of instances. There was that girl at the fair when I was ten. I'd gotten the feeling before, but this was the first person I'd actually see die, the first time I connected death to those shadows, that feeling. She fell off the ferris wheel, it seemed she leaned out over the side too far, and just...fell out. Splat.
Or there was that time in ninth grade, that guy on the football team, I'm pretty sure he was a senior, Andy Harris. He crashed his car after a party, the same day I saw shadows. And then that cheerleader who offed herself, hung herself in her bedroom. Hung herself the same day I got that feeling about her. It seems she was pregnant, couldn't bear to tell anybody. There are some other things, but those are the easiest to check, if you want proof. I see people like that in the street all the time.
So now I'm going to tell you te reason I'm even bothering to write this down. I mean, the very fact you're reading this would probably end up with me getting flung into some sort of psych ward, right? I'm telling you now because by the time anybody reads this, it'll be too late, and she'll still be out there, and somebody needs to know.
It started the day before Halloween, at lunch. The cafeteria was crowded, and some of the lunch ladies had hung limp orange and black streamers in an attempt to be festive. She was a couple of people ahead of me in the lunch line; she was smiling, chatting with her perfect friends, tossing her perfect hair, when it happened. Some poor freshman tripped, landing her chili fries straight on her new blouse.
The freshman cowered as her face contorted with rage, just for an instant. Then she smiled, in what might have been cheery forgivness, but I could see the malice in it as she whispered.
“Watch it, b***h.”
Then she stalked away, head high. I waited until her entourage had left before helping the poor kid up. Just when I grabbed her hand though, my stomach knotted up, and I felt like I was going to puke. The girl's face looked shallow and sunken, shadowy; there were deep bags under her eyes. At least, that's what she looked like to me. She hadn't had a death aura before, I would have noticed, I know I would have.
Two emails were sent out to every student in the school that night. One was an invitation to a Halloween party, hosted my some guy on the lacrosse team. The other was darker, one from the school, discussing the condition of one of the ninth graders. She'd had a heart attack walking home from school, and wasn't expected to live through the night.
Well, the Halloween party was still on, and even loners like me could go. I wasn't really planning to, but I couldn't ignore what had happened. I needed to investigate; she was doing something, had to be. I grabbed an old “Scream” mask from the back of my closet, and set off.
The music of the party thumped, dance beats, then heartbeats, thudding in my ears. It was all I could do to keep pushing my way through the crowd. That's when I saw her,dressed all in white, with cute little angel wings and a crooked wire halo. One of her groupies, who'd come late, also had an angel costume. Uh oh. As the second angel approached the group, she grabbed the groupie.
“Hey, why did you copy my costume? Do you have an original bone in your body?!? I'm not in the mood to be copied.”
She let go of the second angel, whose face now looked like the freshman's from yesterday. Another victim. That, of course, when somebody else started trying to push through the crowd, toting a large bowl of punch. It was obvious the bowl was too heavy for him, and she was right there! I ran up, supporting the bowl just before it spilled all over her. The guy holding it smiled friendly at me, and I smiled back, blushing a bit. No! This wasn't the time for blushing! That's when I felt manicured fingernails spin me around, and I was face to face with her.
“Any reason other then punch you need to go pushing me around for?” she said icily.
I needed to move, to run, to get out of there! But I couldn't. My legs felt like jell-o, refusing to do what I told them to. She tossed her head, turning back her her groupies.
“I thought not.”
The other angel was nowhere in sight. The girl was going to die, if she hadn't already, and she was LAUGHING. It was a game, seeing what they'd do. Ooo, maybe they'd get hit by a truck! Or just have a heart attack, like that poor freshman.
I couldn't stand it anymore. I bolted to my car, pushing the pedal to the floor, speeding home.
I looked in the mirror in the hallway. Yup. Shadowy eyes, sunken face. I couldn't go by my stomach, I'd been feeling like I was about to puke for ages.
I guess I'm facing death a lot better then most. I mean, I'm writing this, aren't I? I'm not calling the friends I don't have, or my mom and dad. I just want everybody to know she's out there. If I'm right, you'll be reading this, and hey, you might even believe it. If I'm wrong, you'll never see this, so it doesn't matter. Well, here goes. Her name is