The cab driver had told me that the weather was always sunny here. It had been an out-of-place comment, considering how we had simply been sitting in silence throughout the entire drive. That was the only thing he had said to me.

I glanced back at the cab as it sped off; I watched it until it lined with the trees of a nearby forest. The leaves seemed illuminated, I thought, as I lifted my gaze onto the sky. Perfect day. No clouds in sight, just a clear blue stretch above me. For a moment, I didn't want to move. A day like this was hard to come by. I smiled at the sky.

Eventually, I picked up my two bags. They were heavy, but nothing that I couldn't handle. One contained my clothes, shampoo, toothbrush, the whole ordeal, and the smaller bag contained my tutor materials. I walked up to the house in front of me, my feet taking me up the driveway. As I walked, I admired the unique architecture. It had a slight gothic look to it; the roof wasn't flat, but thinly spired. I almost got the impression of a clichéd haunted house. A smirk quirked my lips at this thought and I stepped up to the door. The doorbell was fancy-gold of colour, but slowly bronzing.

I made a move to press the doorbell, but hesitated and dug my fingers into the pocket of my jeans. I pulled out a small, square piece of paper that the owner of this house had sent me when I had accepted her job offer as a tutor for her son. It was a confirmation that I was the proper girl she had hired. I found it a little different, but it wasn't necessarily wrong to do.

I rang the doorbell and waited, slipping my hands behind my back as I did so. I absently curled my toes against my soft green sandals and sighed. The heat was getting to me.

The door slowly creaked open, but only by a few centimetres. My forehead creased as I looked at the one who had opened the door—a young boy was peeking up at me, his entire form clouded by the shadow of the door. Then, as quickly as he had opened the door, he slammed it shut. It shook tauntingly at me from the impact.

I wavered and stood in my place, put off. I suddenly wished I hadn't taken the job. Certainly that had been the boy who I was assigned to tutor. I sighed to myself once more and rang the doorbell again. I supposed anything was better than being stuck in my own house all day, however. My parents were exceedingly strict; sometimes it got to me. Actually, it always got to me.

So here I was. Out of my own house—and town—for the summer, tending to a rude little boy who had just shut a door in my face. That hadn't been the welcome I wanted.

I wasn't much for giving second chances. First impressions were everything, and he had made an impression on me.

The door opened, wide and with an air-like whoosh. I started upon seeing a lady standing in the frame, smiling at me. Something about her seemed off, but I couldn't place anything wrong with her, aside from the fact that she was sickly pale and had this sunken look to her eyes. Her hair was faded blonde, straw-like and with a rugged-looking texture. She was tall, thin, and I could tell she had once been a very pretty person. Her appearance seemed worn now, however.

I returned the smile. "Hello," I politely said, and then held up the card for her to see, "I'm Siam."

Her smile stretched out until it looked almost strained. She leaned over and grasped my wrist with her thin fingers and practically pulled me inside. I opened my mouth to say something, but she was already talking.

"Oh, it's alright, dearie," she said in a soothing, eerily calm voice, "we'll get your bags in a minute. First, I want you to meet my son."

I bit my tongue from saying that I basically already had. She walked me up a steep staircase that had pictures—framed photographs—lined on the walls the length of it. Her hair didn't even bounce as she walked; it just stayed down, flat, lifeless. But she seemed happy, unlike her hair.

She glanced over her shoulder at me. "Oh, mercy me. I nearly forgot. I'm Ella Fosters."

I knew that. Her name had been in the ad. I decided not to point this out and instead, smiled and nodded. The step second to the top creaked beneath my feet; I was mildly jostled by the sound.

The upstairs was interesting. There was a large room that contributed to only the staircase. I followed—I frowned trying to recall her name—Ella through a doorframe. A long hall greeted me. There were three doors on each side; we stopped at a centre door, to my right. Ella rapped her knuckles against the door.

"Lyre, darling, come out here," she softly called through the wood. Slowly, the door creaked open in a similar fashion as the front door had the first time. The boy peeked his head out and stared at me with strange eyes. They looked. . . infected. I was bothered by his appearance. He, like his mother, was pale, and had dirty blond hair, although it was more full of life than Ella's. His eyes were almond-shaped, black, endless.

"He's only eight," his mother offered, then added, "and a half."

I slowly nodded, then remembered my manners. "I'm Siam," I told him, straining a smile. He glared back up at me with those unnerving eyes. My smile flickered.

"He's angry because the nice boy from town hasn't come yet," Ella explained to me with a tone of polite laughter. She touched my shoulder. "Here. Let me show you your room. Then we can carry up your bags."

I sat in the living-room, adjusting my materials. I had to help Lyre with his maths and sciences. Both were subjects I loathed, but excelled in. It didn't really matter if I was good or not, because I would be reviewing grade four with him. I could ace grade four without trying. I was sixteen, sweet sixteen, but it sure didn't feel that way. My parents hadn't even let me leave the house with my friends on my sixteenth birthday. Harsh, but then again, I understood their over-protectiveness—but that didn't mean I didn't hate it.

Lyre walked into the livingroom and watched me with those odd eyes of his. They didn't match him, as he was a young boy, and his eyes belonged to someone much older. He eventually made up his mind and walked over to me. He sat on the couch across from me and watched as I sorted through some math papers.

He suddenly reached for one, snatched it out my hand, and ripped it in two. I tried not to show any surprise, and simply dully gazed at him.

"What was that for?" I emotionlessly asked him. He was a little brat.

He shrugged, then giggled a little. It sounded slightly girlish. When I blinked, he stopped; his smile faded. He grabbed another paper and ran his fingernail into it, dragging it downwards with a certain pugnacity until it ripped. He continued this, turning the paper around so he could get an easier access. He was drawing something.

"What are you doing?" I asked, sitting back, distancing myself from him and the poor paper.

"Circle," he gritted out. "Circle." When he was finished, he held the paper up to me. I knew he had tried to cut in a circle, but it looked more like a rabid raccoon had gotten at it. "Circles never end." He giggled again, that odd girly giggle. "Just like happiness."

My smile was tentative. "No. No, they don't." Well, at least he had a happy thought in mind while he had been tearing the paper to hell I cleared my throat. "So, um," I shuffled some papers to distract myself from his strangeness, "which do you want to do first? Science, or math?"

"Fuck off."

I started and peered up at him from under a few strands of chocolate brown hair that had fallen in a curtain over my face. I brushed the hair away. He leaned back on the couch, sinking into it a little.

"You know," he began nonchalantly, "you're. . . hawt."

Help me. I stiffened. "What?"

He grinned. "Good pick, mother," he said to no one in particular. It had been directed to his mother, but of course, she wasn't in the room. Then he got up, and left. I stared at the spot he had been in, disturbed. Maybe I had judged this kid too quickly. Maybe first impressions weren't everything, because he was giving me quite a second impression right now, and it was ten times uglier than the first impression.

Well, it wasn't like he could get any worse, could he?

I gathered up my materials and shoved them back in one of the bags that Ella had helped me carry in. I hauled the bag all the way up the stairs and to my room which was—thankfully—not across from Lyre's. Instead, it was directly beside the staircase room, to the left. It wasn't comfortable, really, but there didn't seem to be a reason for it not to be. Maybe I just wasn't used to sleeping in a foreign bed. I hadn't even slept over at a friend's house before.

I set the bag on the carpet and sat down on my new bed. It was cold. Everything in this room was cold, probably from not being used often. The window had a nice view of the road, however, and if I leaned out a little, I could see the entire front yard, and porch, of the house.

The room was small, cold, different. I didn't like it. There were empty shelves, an empty dresser and desk, and an empty closet. The room bored me, but at the same time, made me feel on my toes.

I heard the doorbell ring. I hesitated, then got up and walked over to the window, curious. I leaned out, making sure to keep my hands on the sill for support, strained my neck, and caught sight of a boy waiting out on the porch.

He was. . . breathtaking.

His appearance was dark, with pure black hair and clouded green eyes that I could see even from here. They were catching. He was pale, and probably looked even paler than usual with his choice of clothing—which were more dark of colour. I was about to look away, but then I noticed he was wearing a pink wrist band. From his wrist, I went to his hands; he was carrying a box.

He was basically the opposite of the people in this house. He looked as if he didn't belong here; he was such a collision compared to them.

Ella opened the door. I slipped my head back inside my room and frowned. I walked downstairs, my fingertips skimming the railing as I did so, and I reached the kitchen. Lyre was there, watching as his mother exited the porch and came into the kitchen with us. She was now holding the box.

She noticed me before Lyre did. She smiled. "Would you like some?"

I wavered. "What are they?" Some of what?

She opened the box. Cookies, a soft brown in colour, topped with edible sparkles.

"I don't like cookies," I declined.

She laughed a lofty laugh. "Oh, my. Lyre just loves these. So do I, in fact. They're marvellous."

Marvellous cookies. Her word choices were a bit. . . odd, but, whatever worked for her. Lyre grabbed one of the cookies from out the box and ate it in a matter of seconds. He took another, and then another. He grinned happily, then practically skipped into the livingroom. Ella shook her head, smiling.

"Why don't you watch him for a bit? Oh—he just loves those cookies."

I wasn't sure how long I could put up with her. She was. . . infuriating after awhile. Just, the way she acted, so majestic and serene. I left to go into the livingroom, where Lyre was walking in circles. I nearly choked on my own saliva. His pace was so set, so serious, that it was laughable.

I didn't even have to ask him what he was doing. He'd just tell me that circles never ended.


okay so here is the collab number 1 that naffi (hotkitty) and I (bleedingair) have been working on. It's only 14 chapters, because it was mainly used for us to get the hang of writing with each other.

It's effing crazy, too. So enjoy, and review, and tell us what you think :)