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Prologue: The Small Something

The most important memories are those remembered by the body.

The first time she saw him, she felt afraid. For some reason, a small feeling in the pit of her chest reacted, and she was fearful.

“A small something?” muttered the mouth of a girl that was eighteen and shy.

He didn’t see her, though. The twenty-something clad in a shirt stamped with the words Philadelphia University didn’t see her. That was probably for the best. Had he seen her then, everything would have been spoiled. He wouldn’t have been able to hold himself back.

She was the one he’d been waiting for.

The girl turned her back to him and clutched her latte against the ribcage that held the small something in place.

Still, the twenty-something didn’t notice her. He was pale. He loved the outdoors, but he was pale. His hair was dark and messy. So, too, were his eyes a color of the night. Maybe brown. Maybe green. Either way, they were a shade so dark that they nearly looked black, and sometimes, when the sun hit them just right, they almost looked . . . red.

“I’m taking a hiatus, if you will,” the boy was saying into his phone. “Yes, I could have graduated. But I’ve my reasons for holding off. I’ll pick up the slack this summer. I assure you it’ll be fine.

He paused to listen to the nosy person on the other end of the line.

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