Eight-Teen

"Oh its beautiful mom!" I squealed while gently pulling the chain out of the small velvet box. It was a sleek, silver necklace and at the bottom was a crystal moon. When the light from the window hit the tiny crescent a rainbow of colors shot out all over my chest and onto the floor. I embraced my mother quickly and then undid the clasp to the necklace. I slid it around my throat and reconnected the chain. The crystal moon sat right under the hollow of my neck.

"Mom where'd you get this? It must have cost a fortune!" I exclaimed while admiring it.

"Well actually its been passed down in our family for ages, Jade. Its actually pretty old, but its definitely worth a fortune." she said while smiling. "It's a sign that you've become an adult, I mean your eight-teen now. Aren't you excited?"

"Of course I am….its just everything's been moving kind of fast lately." It was true. I mean it felt like I had just had my sweet six-teen, and now I'm eight-teen? Jeez times out of whack. She just put a hand on my shoulder and smiled.

"I know honey, but I promise you things will start to change before you know it." Her smile didn't falter, but something about her features changed. It was so fast that I might have imagined. I could've asked, but thought not to.

"Yeah I hope so, well I've gotta go, I promised the guys I'd meet them at the mall by five. I'll be home before eleven, bye mom." I gave her another quick hug and jogged for the door. I got to my car and hopped in the drivers side. Crap its five-twenty….they're gunna be pissed! I started the engine to my red Sunfire, and peeled out. That would annoy my dad, but I was already late so ill take the yelling later. I sped down the road, possibly over the speed limit…oops.

I reached the mall less than ten minutes later. Eh it wasn't bad timing I thought. When I got to the entrance there they were spread out all over the fountain in front of the building. April lifted her head, spotted me and screamed

"Fashionably late on are birthday I see!" I just gave a weak smile and jogged over to the fountain. April was already on her feet bouncing like a three year old.

I made it to April, and she attacked. Arms around my neck while shrieking happy birthday at the top of her lungs. She's so damn loud. I said thanks and pried her from my throat. Her short blonde hair was hanging around the sides of her face. The tips were dyed purple. She did this every week, and it was always a different color. Eh but that's April, always eccentric. Cam had gotten up by now too. He was sprinting over, his blonde spikes slightly wind swept. Before I knew what was happening, I was in his huge arms being crushed in a hug.

"Cam…I…can't…breathe!" I managed to finally choke out. He chuckled and gently lowered me back to earth. God what's he on, steroids? I looked him over real quick…did he get taller? He's already over six foot, and he's still going? Jeez. His light tanned skin gave a faint glow in the sun, and I noticed his eyes were locked on the diamond moon around my neck. He had a small smile on his lips.

"Happy B-Day Jay," he laughed "I like the new moon too." I just smiled and turned to see my other friends who had made it over as well. Drake was next to April his arm snaked around her waist. She was staring up at him giggling, and he just grinned down at her. I smiled at them. They were too cute together. At least April had someone who actually could take her 24/7 hyper-ness. Is hyper-ness even a word?

Hailey was there as well, her black hair flowing in the wind behind her. She was a bit taller than me, and about half a foot taller than April. But then again all of us were taller than April. Hailey is the dressy and flashy type of person. She was into very expensive designer clothes. Well it's a good thing her family could afford her taste.

April is just the loud and vibrant girl. Always wearing bright clothes that just scream "look at me!" I'm just…the average one I guess? I grew out of my tomboy stage once I hit eighth grade. Though, I'm not exactly into the flashy or expensive stuff either. Don't get me wrong, I go shopping just as much as any other teenage girl. I mean I love that stuff. But I don't live to shop, or shop to live. If I need clothes I buy them. I don't have a closet full of crap that I'll most likely never wear.

The guys are like polar opposites. Cam looks like a bodybuilder now. He got so much taller and his body is perfectly toned. Nobody understands how it happened so fast. Just two months ago he had a completely different physique. He still had muscles but not like these, and he was almost a foot shorter. He went through some extreme growth spurt.

Drake has always been the same. He was a tall lean guy with medium length black hair. It reached just centimeters over his ears. He had very light skin, way lighter than mine. His was a creamy color, its not dark, but not pale either. About the same as Hailey's. People always mistook those two for twins. They had the same jet black hair, and gray blue eyes. April had extremely deep blue irises, they were similar to sapphires. Cam had light brown eyes with dark brown around the edges. And my eyes…well they match my name. They're a very light green, just like jade stones.

"Hello? Earth to Jade. We are still here you know," I blinked as Cam's booming voice brought me back from examining everyone's eyes. "Don't you want your present?" I sly smile spreading across his lips.

I groaned as Hailey pulled out a small box wrapped in silver paper. "Its from all of us, we had to get you something." She said with a grin. I just rolled my eyes.

"I told you guys not to get me anything!" I whined.

"Oh just take it!" April argued.

"Ugh," I took the box from Hailey and stared at it "You just had to get something" I mumbled while pulling the lid off. Inside was a thin slip of paper. I was slightly confused and pulled the sheet out. I flipped it over and I realized it was a concert ticket, and it was for the Within Temptation performance in a few weeks! I shrieked. Cam and Drake covered their ears and the girls just giggled.

"Oh my god, I love you guys!" I started jumping up and down. I hugged each one of them, and they all had smug looks on their faces.

"So you still wished we hadn't gotten you anything?" Drake questioned with an arrogant smile across his face. I just stuck my tongue out at him.

We walked in the mall eventually after having a discussion on school next year. I mean we're only going to be in high school one more year. Cam wants to go out with a bang. Apparently he's already planning a huge end of the year party where the entire school's invited. Well he definitely has the house for it. His house is three stories including the basement, and the actual size is pretty intimidating. All of us agreed to be there, because if we didn't Cam would force us any way.

We all split up after a while of aimless walking. April said to meet up at the food court by seven. I strolled on by myself to a music store. I hadn't bought any CD's in a while, so I was eager to look for something new. I ambled up and down the isles of music scanning every album name I could see. Only three specific ones caught my eye. One was a new Paramore single I'd heard my friends talk about. The other two were Flyleaf and Within Temptation albums. I was going to see Within Temptation, might as well buy their newest album.

After I had my albums in hand I began scanning the headphone's. I was desperately in need of a pair. My old ones were to damaged and the sound was fuzzy. As a I picked up a pair of ear buds I heard someone approach behind me. I didn't bother to turn around. It was probably some annoying store clerk coming to convince me into buying a new stereo system or something. I rolled my eyes.

"Jade, is that you?" The oh so familiar deep voice sounded from behind me. I knew that voice from some where, didn't I? I slowly turned around, but was shocked by who stood in front of me. The broad chest, muscled arms, and shaggy cropped hair were completely unfamiliar. But I knew those sparkling green eyes, and that huge grin. Those eyes were my families eyes. What had happened to him? Last time I saw Luke he did not look like this. The Luke I remember was my little cousin who only stood a few inches taller than me, which would be about five foot seven or eight. This kid, well you would think man by the look of him, stood a foot above my head. He lost all his teenage roundness and was completely chiseled. It was kind of freaky. He had cut his hair too. It used to sit right under his ears, now it was just above his eyebrows.

"Luke, is that really you?! What happened? You look…well…huge!" I almost yelled. His grin just grew even wider. He strode over to me and crushed me into a giant hug. That's twice today that someone constricted my lungs. Ugh.

"Jeez Luke I can't freaking breathe!" I managed to cough out. He snorted as he put me back down. I looked up at him and studied his features. "Ok, where is my little cousin?" I asked in a teasing tone, but I was also completely serious.

"Aw c'mon Jade its still me inside…I just grew…a bit heheh…" He mumbled. He sounded kind of embarrassed.

"A bit?! You look like you're on some kinda drug. I haven't seen you in what three months and you look like you've aged ten years." He just rolled his eyes at my comment. He grabbed my arm gently, and I noticed he had on a ring. Carved into the ring was a miniature silver moon.

"We have to talk about something, but not here." He said, his expression changing from goofy to serious. I agreed, and paid for my CD's quickly. Then we headed out the mall exit.

"Whoa hold it, I cant just leave now. My friends are here, I cant just abruptly bail. They'll flip." He thought about that for a minute and then had an answer.

"Well text, or call them telling them you have a family emergency and you had to go. Then hop in your car and follow me, all right?" I just stared at him and nodded blankly. I was utterly confused and just listened to what he told me. I sent a message to April's phone telling her exactly what Luke had said. She wrote back telling me to call her when I could. I jumped in my car and waited to see Luke's black Mustang pull out of the parking lot. Then I followed.

The ride wasn't too long, but I was confused when I saw where he had stopped. We were on a trail in the middle of the woods. He leaped from his car and walked over to me. I had gotten out and was just looking at the scenery now. It was beautiful. The trees hung over the trail creating the perfect shade, and the trail led up hill to a bright opening. I turned to look at Luke, who had a puzzled look on his face.

It immediately smoothed out after a few moments and he turned and began walking up the hill.

"C'mon Jade, it's way nicer up here." He called over his shoulder. I quickly regained my train of thought from the woods and began jogging up to meet Luke's pace. What was going on? And why do we need to be in the woods? What happened to Luke, he looks like a completely different guy. He used to look like such a little kid, but now he could pass for his early to mid twenties. He's how old now seventeen? Yeah, he was younger than me by a year and two months.

As I was thinking I had completely forgotten where I was walking, because next thing I knew I was on the edge of a river. I blinked in shock and then my eyes focused on the surrounding area. Whoa. It was amazing out here! The sun was shining directly in the center of this field. The water of the river sparkled, and I felt safe here. Like I should be here.

"I told you it was nice" Luke said sounding content. I turned and smiled at him, but the smile faded quickly turning into worry.

"Ok, so what's going on? What's the emergency, and why do we need to be in the woods?"

"Well…uh… ok, this may seem weird at first, but you'll understand it all later."

"Ok…well go ahead, spit it out."

" Here, I'll just start off with a simple question: How do you feel about the supernatural?" His lips turned into a devious smirk.