This is a work of fiction. Incidents, Names, characters, and places are either a product of the writer's imagination or have been used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
I should have known everything would sink straight to hell's crawlspace when Mac Ramsay kissed me in the library study carrels two and a half minutes before Mr. Snug's history exam.
I'd gone there from third period, earning myself a soaker in my Sketchers when I hadn't paid enough attention to the small stream that waterfalls down Arden High's east stairwell. I did my best to ignore my squishy socks as I studied through lunch hour, cocooned from the world by the wooden walls of a cubby in the library's Reference room.
I picked a spot in the quietest corner, farthest from the five columns of reference books behind the librarian's desk. It took me a few tries to find a desk where the ancient fluorescent light hummed to life when I pulled the hanging chain of metal beads, but I managed it.
The first book out of my backpack made me flinch. "The Secret Commonwealth of Elves, Fauns and Fairies wouldn't do me any good on my History test. On the kind of whim I usually fight, I'd bought it when Dad and I went to England on March break a couple weeks ago. The town of Avebury, with its stone circles and nearness to Stonehenge, had been full of fairy stuff, parapsychology books, energy healing crystals, etc. I told myself I was interested in the book from a folklore perspective, but once I felt myself getting sucked into the bizarre stories of the awesome magical Otherworld, I knew I should toss the book in the nearest trash can to keep myself level. Grounded. The fact that I'd accidentally packed the book in my school stuff disgusted me. It meant I had let my control slip.