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Flawed Update - Chapter 3 - First Draft

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Old 01-12-2009, 07:08 PM
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Default Flawed Update - Chapter 3 - First Draft


Name: Jessica
Title: Flawed (Working Title/May Change) First Draft!!
Genre: Drama/Romance (Possibly Young Adult... Haven't decided)
Rating: PG-13
Chapter Update: Prologue - Chapter 3 Completed
About the Book: This is my first attempt at writing a book! I will post up chapters as I complete them and would absolutely love to be critiqued. This is all entirely a very first draft. More than likely I will edit this post with updated drafts before moving onto the next chapter.
About Me: I'm 23 years old and have loved to write for as long as I can remember. I've always been told I should become a writer and now I'm trying my hand at it. I currently live in Georgia, but am originally from California. Favorite Book? Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand.
Special Thanks: Thank you El for critiquing!!
Chapter Notes: So I don't have to keep posting up the whole thing, plus the update, every time, I have uploaded the full story onto Scribd. I will now only be posting up the newest chapters I've written. If you need to catch up on previous chapters and don't want to hunt them down on the forum, then go here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/9379859/Flawed-First-Draft Also, if you're having trouble reading the font, you can adjust the size on Scribd easily!! Thanks for the input!!


Page 18


Flawed - Chapter 3/ Piano Man - First Draft

One would think that Aidan would sit and stare adoringly upon Ember as she slept, but his expressions were more confused than anything else. There he sat in an arm chair just to the left of her bed, the room completely dark with the exception of the sliver of moonlight that trickled across her hair scattered across the pillow. He hadn't been sitting there long as she'd fallen almost right to sleep. Not surprising at all, given how exhausted she was. They'd had to fight the wind all the way back to their house and both Ember and Evelyn had been crying the whole way.

Sitting now, in silence, Aidan had a moment to let it all sink in and think. Leaning his elbows down onto his knees, he pulled his fingers up through his hair and rested his head there in his hands. He'd walked them back to their house, holding his coat over both of them, as they'd huddled against him. While it certainly wasn't the happiest of times, Aidan couldn't help but feel like he was exactly where he was supposed to be. With Ember holding him tighter and Evelyn pushing him further, he knew that simple truth. He could deal with whatever would come next as long as he knew that truth.

The part that confused him was where exactly he fit into their world. Aidan had no idea of what part he would play exactly. With Ember it was easy, and then extraordinarily difficult, at the same time. With her, it didn't feel like some summer love, or an attraction. It didn't have that kind of simplicity. It was an unexplainable need within him to keep her safe, make her laugh and smile, and constantly feel like he wasn't worthy of her attention. With Evelyn, it was never easy. Not even in those brief moments where he caught some tiny piece of insight into how the wheels in her stubborn, calculating, mind spun could he ever say that it was easy. It was an amazing thing really where he fit in between these two girls. He could calm and soften Ember in the same short few moments as he could completely enrage Evelyn and send her into a complete tantrum. Having that kind of power over them, despite how either of them felt towards him, was a fragile, important, thing. Something that he felt a great responsibility to protect and never take advantage of.

If all of these thoughts in Aidan's head could take on a physical form, they would have been closing in on him in the space of the small room, then would have suddenly vanished into thin air when he heard the sound of footsteps in the hallway. His head shot up, eyes narrowing, before he pushed himself up from the chair and went to the door. Opening it, he glanced out into the hallway, a block of light illuminating his face. He saw movement at the end of the hallway, but glanced back to Ember to ensure she still slept before he slipped out the door.


"Oh." Jane said, pausing as she was sliding her foot into one of her shoes, by the door. "I wasn't sure if you were going to come back out. I was just going to leave."

Aidan didn't say anything for a moment. He just walked closer, nodding slowly, sliding his hands into his pockets. He stopped next to where she stood.

"I tried to get Evelyn to talk, but..." Jane trailed off, pushing her other foot into her other shoe. "Well, she doesn't really know me." Looking up at him, she added, "I think you're wrong about her."

Aidan shrugged. "She's very difficult, but I was beginning to think that myself." He sighed. "Really doesn't change the fact that she despises me, though." He laughed softly.

"I kind of like her for that." Jane said with a laugh. "Everyone adores you. You put up a good front. She just sees through it."

"And you know this from this one day that you've spent in her company?" Aidan asked, incredulously.

"Yes." Jane said confidently. "Despite your charm, Aidan, you are very, hopelessly, flawed."


"I think it's more than my flaws that she despises. It's the whole idea of me." Aidan said, hitting a more serious note.

"You mean, because of Ember."

"Yea. In a way. I think it's because of a lot of things." Aidan said and then let out a long, exaggerated sigh, as he shook his head. "Don't listen to me. I have absolutely no idea what I'm talking about." He let out an exasperated laugh.

For a moment, they stood in the comfortable silence of two old friends realizing that despite anything in the past, that they were meant to be there for each other in times like these.

"You're not... put out with me, are you?" Jane asked.
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"Put out with you?"

"I mean, well, I just kind of barged in on all of this. I didn't mean to. I found Evelyn in the bathroom at school, and--"

"Jane." Aidan said, stopping her. "You didn't barge in on anything. I mean, if it had to be anyone to have been there today, I'm glad that it was you. It would have been unbearably awkward had it been anyone else."

"Well, I'm glad I could save you the awkwardness."

Aidan shook his head. "You did much more than that," He said. "Come here."


Reaching a hand out, Aidan pulled her into a hug, wrapping his arms around her shoulders. Jane went, hesitantly at first, and then wrapped her own arms around his middle. "You have to understand that Ember and this family mean the world to me." He said, and then continued, "And if there's anyone I trust with that... it's you."

Jane nodded softly against him, speechless.

Pulling back from him, Jane let out a bit of a shaky sigh, before saying, "If you don't mind, I'd like to come back in the morning. Maybe I could show Evelyn around at school?"

Aidan nodded. "That's a good idea. You're less of a threat to her. She'll be much less likely to run off in hysterics like she does with me."

"Exactly." Jane smiled. "I'll see you tomorrow, then."

"You will." Aidan nodded. "Oh, Jane? Where did you leave Evelyn?"

"In the library."






"Are you all right?"

Aidan's voiced asked from somewhere behind where Evelyn sat, perched on a piano bench, her fingers just barely brushing over the black and white keys. Glancing over her shoulder, she saw him standing there, leaning against the door frame. For a moment, she simply looked at him and thought that somehow it looked like this day had aged him considerably. She could understand, in a way. The past few months had certainly made her feel much older than seventeen.


Evelyn didn't answer his question. It was an absurd question, really. Was she all right? Obviously, he knew the answer, therefore, it was a pointless, absurd, question. Normally, she would point that out to him, but she just didn't have the energy. Instead, she simply turned her attention back to the piano keys and hoped, silently, that he would go away.

No such luck. She heard his footsteps come further into the room, coming up behind her, and wondered briefly why she had thought for even a breath of a moment that he might actually do something that she wanted him to do, for once. Well, she wasn't going to pay him any attention. The last thing she wanted right now was to get into yet another fight with him. The guy who thought he was in love with her sister. He was sixteen. He probably didn't even know his social security number, let alone if he was in love with someone, or not. Especially not her sister. Not Ember.

Aidan sat down on the bench next to her, but Evelyn didn't look up from the keys.

"This was your mum's piano, wasn't it?" He asked, and the question pulled on a heart string, deep within Evelyn.


It pulled hard enough for her to answer simply, "Yes."

"Yea. First time I met her, she taught me a song on this piano."

Evelyn looked up at him, then, not knowing exactly how she felt about the idea that he'd had any form of relationship with her mother. She hadn't spent much time around him when he was with Ember, or her family. She would always lock herself away somewhere and read. Suddenly, Evelyn found herself wanting to hear more about these moments she'd missed with her mother. Time lost while she was off being stubborn, somewhere.

Aidan looked down at the keys, Evelyn watching him closely, as he continued, "I told her about how much I love music and we just sat here and talked all day about it. Ember was over there, laughing about something in a book with your dad," He looked up and nodded towards the bookshelves that lined the wall to the right of them, "And I
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remember she was so excited to teach me this song, because it was one I hadn't heard before. She's been trying to stump me, you see." He smirked.

Tears filled Evelyn's eyes. That sounded exactly like her mother. It sounded exactly like things that she would say and things that she would do. Things that she would never do, or say, ever again.


Aidan looked over at her then, the small smile fading from his lips. Evelyn swiped furiously at the tears. She was growing so tired of them and their inconvenience, especially around him. She'd been about to open her mouth and ask him to leave, when he started playing.

It was a song that she immediately recognized and it took her breath away to hear it, now. Helplessly, Evelyn watched as Aidan's hands stroked each and every note that she'd watched her mother play so many times before. Her mother had composed this song for her when she was born. She'd composed a song for Ember, as well, but this one was hers. Why did her mother play Aidan her song? Why not Ember's? Her mother had probably been trying to coax her out of her hiding spot, thinking she would hear the music from there. She hadn't and almost wished now, that she had.


Bringing the back of her hand up against her trembling lips, Evelyn closed her eyes, tears falling from them and down her cheeks, as she listened. Listened and let memories of her mother wash over her. Her radiant smile that could brighten the moodiest of Evelyn's days. Her contagious laughter that always lit her father up from the inside, out. Her positivity and her kindness that radiated through her and into the hearts of others. Why did such a beautiful, amazing, woman have to die? What good did that do the world? Evelyn was certain that she would never understand.

As the last few notes of the song were played, the memories drifted away and Evelyn opened her eyes, blinking away the tears, gasping.

Aidan remained quite for a moment, before saying, "She never did tell me who it was by."

"It was hers." Evelyn said, her voice breaking. "She wrote it. For me, just after I was born."

Evelyn's response caused Aidan's brow to furrow considerably, before he asked, "Does your father know it?"

"No." She replied softly. "He doesn't play the piano."

"Then..." Aidan trailed.

"You're the only one who knows it, now." Evelyn said, realizing that fact just as soon as she was saying it.


"Odd. You would think..." Aidan started to say, and then shook his head. Evelyn assumed he was thinking the very same thing that she had thought. Why her song? "Funny how some things work out." He said, instead.

"Yea." She replied, and brushed the remaining tears from her cheeks, attempting to pull herself together.


"If you don't want to talk about it, I'll understand," Aidan lead in, then asked, "But, what happened? I heard it was cancer?"

"Um. Yea. Pancreatic cancer." Evelyn replied. "They said she'd had it for awhile and just didn't know. If they had found it sooner, they might have been able to do something about it," She paused. "I really don't understand why they tell people that, though." Shaking her head, she continued, "It's hereditary. We found out that my grandmother died of the same thing. My mother hadn't spoken to her in years, though. She disapproved of my father."

"Hereditary." Aidan repeated the word, softly. "Does that mean then that Ember, or you, might get sick as well?"

Evelyn nodded. "We have to get tested. They wanted to test us, but Dad wouldn't let them."
Aidan blinked in confusion. "Why ever not?"


"He hasn't been himself. He yelled at the doctors and took us away. Maybe he didn't want to know. Maybe he really has gone insane. Maybe it's denial. Your guess is as good as mine." Evelyn said with a shrug.


"That's absurd!" Aidan exclaimed.


"I'm going to get tested when I turn eighteen." Evelyn said with a firm nod. "If he doesn't right himself before then, I guess."

"I'll right him." Aidan mumbled. "There has to be some kind of law. He can't do that. We can go to someone and tell them that he's unfit to make decisions on the behalf of his children, or something."

Evelyn let out a long sigh. "I've already thought of that. Ember won't allow it. She's very protective of him. Plus, where would we end up? They wouldn't let us stay here, Aidan. We don't have any other family. We'd be put into one of those homes, my dad would be alone, and Ember would be miserable without him." She could have added, without you, and the thought even brushed her mind for the slightest of seconds, but she shook it away.
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"I'm going to the library tomorrow to research it." Aidan said definitively. Standing, he walked around the piano in front of her, as he continued, "Maybe if I can bring him enough information, he'll listen. I can get through to him. I'll make him listen. He always seemed reasonable enough."

Evelyn's gaze lowered then. Back to keys of the piano, as she said softly, "He always seemed like a lot of things to me that he just isn't now." She shook her head. "He just isn't the same. Try all you want to, but--"

"I will try. Why are you giving up so easily?" Aidan asked, accusingly.

"Easily!"

It was then that a sound out in the hallway caught their attention. It was a dragging sound, the screeching of rubber shoes against the linoleum floors, and then the creak of a door being opened.


Both Aidan and Evelyn made it to the library door at the same time, glancing at each other briefly, before they looked around the corner, down the hallway, to where Michael Irving stood just outside of Ember's room, his hand still raised from having pushed the door open. He just stood there, wavering back and forth, staring into the open door way. It was obvious that he was barely able to keep himself upright.

"Dad?" Evelyn called softly, stepping out into the hallway, taking a few steps in his direction. She was certain that he'd been drinking. She'd never known her dad to be a drinker, at all, but that's all he'd been doing for a month straight.


Michael Irving turned his head, looked at her, and then went clumsily made his way down the hallway, in the opposite direction without saying a word. Using the wall to hold himself up all the way down to his bedroom. The sound of the door closing made Evelyn flinch.


Breathing in deep, she squared her shoulders, and turned hurt and angry eyes towards Aidan, as she asked, "What makes you think seeing my father like this, is easy?"


"Evelyn, I'm--"

"No, it's fine. It's what you've always thought of me, anyway." Evelyn viciously spat at him before she turned on her heel and marched towards her room, trying to keep her head held high, ignoring him as he called after her again. She was nearly racing and closed her door the second that she was inside of her room. It was until then that she cried. She didn't want Aidan to see any more of her tears.

Not a single one.







The whole following morning had been very awkward, indeed. Somehow Aidan had found himself trying to take care of two grief stricken girls when he barely knew how to take care of himself. He'd stayed with Ember all night; sleeping in the chair next to her bed. Something that was going to have to change if he wanted to have use of his neck for very long. Then, in the morning, he'd woken before them and made breakfast.


Him. Make breakfast.

Aidan didn't even realize that he knew how to make anything. His sisters had banned him from the kitchen when he'd once attempted to make a stew out of just about everything he could find in the kitchen. The concoction probably could have eaten the paint right off of a car. However, this morning he had managed to make toast, bacon, eggs, and he didn't burn anything. It had been a proud moment indeed.


The awkwardness came when the three of them had sat eating and he had a feeling that they were all having the same thoughts. It was a table that Ember and Evelyn had both sat at with their mum and dad, as a family, and now their family was torn apart. Leaving them to sit there with him somehow put in the middle of it all. To him, it was an odd feeling of being out of place, yet exactly where he knew he needed to be.


Jane had picked them up for school. She really was being such a good sport about all of this. When they'd arrived at school, she'd told Evelyn she would show her around before classes and Evelyn had seemed thankful for the distraction. Maybe even thankful to get away from him for a little while, he could imagine. She was going to just have to get used to it. They didn't agree on everything, but after their talk the night before he was certain that they could find some kind of middle ground. Perhaps if she never spoke. He thought, and then smirked a bit, as he knew that would never happen. He'd never met a more opinionated, outspoken, girl. In a way, he admired her passion.


Reaching up, he rubbed his thumb and middle finger against his eyes. He was tired. He'd been sitting in the
Page 22

school's library for over an hour, having told his art appreciation teacher that he needed to do research for the biography he was supposed to be writing about an artist. So much for that; he hadn't even chosen an artist. The table in front of him was stacked with Oncology books, but the words were all starting to blend together. He'd been so lost in his thoughts this whole time, in remembering every little detail about the day before, and in worrying about what the future might be like now that he'd only glanced over maybe a page, or two.

"Aidan?"


Opening his eyes, he blinked, and saw Emma standing there looking at him like he'd grown a second head. He'd been wrong. He did know a girl that was just as opinionated and outspoken as Evelyn; his sister.

"Yeah?" Aidan said, rather nonchalantly.

"You're in the library."

"Astute observation."

"Are you... evading the law?" Emma asked, smartly.

"Funny," Aidan said, leaning back in his chair, "As if you read."

"I read!" Emma screeched, and several shushing sounds came from all around them. Her voice quieted, as she came down to sit in the chair around the corner of the table from him. "I'm sure I've read more than you have."

"Magazines don't count."

Emma's eyes narrowed at him and she was about to open her mouth to bark something else at him when Deacon came strolling out of the same stack that Emma had just been in. He stopped suddenly when he saw the pair of them sitting there.


"Oh hey there, Aidan." Deacon said with a rather sheepish smile.

Aidan rolled his eyes. "Now it all makes sense. Reading." He smirked at Emma. "Is that what they're calling it these days?"

"Oh, hush it." Emma snapped at him and Aidan laughed.

Deacon stepped forward, "Oh come on now, Aidan. You know how it is." He said, before he leaned down and stole a quick kiss from Emma, before heading off again.


"Barely." Aidan said, and then watched as Emma actually stared almost dreamily after him. When she turned back and saw the almost pained expression on his face from having to witness such a thing, her scowl returned.

Putting up his hand in mock defense, Aidan pleaded, "Please, try to restrain yourself. I haven't had enough sleep to bicker with you."

Emma's expression softened. Almost as if somehow her own life had somehow managed to fade enough into the background for her to remember what had happened with him the day before. "All right. So what's going on, then? Megan was furious that you didn't come home last night, or call."

"I didn't know how to explain," Aidan said, shrugging. "I figured you would tell her what happened at school and she would know where I was. She knows a little about it."

"How is it that everyone knows about this, but me?" Emma asked, then added, "Even Jane knew when I spoke with her yesterday. I mentioned the name Ember and I could tell she knew exactly whom I was talking about. But me, your own sister, knows nothing."

"I didn't realize I was supposed to send you some kind of daily feed on my love life, Emma." Aidan quirked, the edge of his lips kicking up in that little smile of his. "I didn't know you cared."

"Oh, rubbish," Emma rolled her eyes. "Of course I care. I care and then I don't care. Does that make sense?"

"None."

"Well, whatever. You know what I mean." She said, and let out a long sigh, watching him rather curiously. "So what was all that yesterday? That wasn't Ember, right? Her sister?"

"Evelyn." Aidan replied, nodding.

"But Ember is the one you fancy?" Emma asked.

Aidan had always hated that expression, but he nodded, "Yes."

"Could have fooled me."

Aidan's brow furrowed. "What's that supposed to mean?"

"You just seemed awfully concerned with her. I had never seen you like that before. Almost dashing, I dare
Page 23

say. Picking her up and whisking her into the other room, like you did." Emma explained rather melodramatically, and then smirked at his narrowed eyes.

"I was not dashing," Aidan said the word almost as if it were an insult. "I wouldn't even know how to be dashing. If anything, it just shocked me. I had never seen her like that. The girl usually breathes fire at me, Emma. Worse than you are, I tell you."

"Hmm. Didn't seem that way."

"Exactly. Which is why I acted as I did. Because I knew something really had to be wrong for her to be crying and looking to me to help her, or something." Aidan sighed, and shook his head. The memory still fresh in his mind of Evelyn's face looking like some kind of watercolor painting. Clearing his throat, he continued, "She's back to hating me now."

"And Ember? I'm guessing you found her."

"Yeah. She was exactly where I knew she would be."

"And you stayed over at their house?"

Aidan nodded, shrugging.


"You cad." Emma gave an almost laughing, shocked, expression.

Aidan glowered at her. "It was hardly like that, Emma. Their dad was in the house."

"Even more scandalous!" She teased.

"Fine, yes, Emma you're right. I took complete advantage of two crying girls grieving for their mum with their dad asleep in the next room," Aidan drawled. "You really should read a few less tabloids."

"I was never insinuating that you took advantage of both of them." Emma smirked, and then hit him playfully in the shoulder. "Oh come on, Aidan. You know I'm joking. You're far too gentlemanly for all that nonsense. What are sisters for but if not to lighten the mood? It's obvious that you need it and it's what you always done for Megan and me."

Looking up at her, Aidan gave a bit of a smile, "Yeah, well, don't look too much into it. Had to entertain myself somehow. Boring lot you are." He laughed, and Emma hit him harder this time.

"Ow! That hurt!"

"Good. I'm glad. I'll show you boring, you little toad." Emma stuck her tongue out at him.
Aidan laughed. "What was that? Are you five?"

"I wish. Being five was much easier."

"Yeah." Aidan couldn't help but agree. "Right you are about that."

"So will you be home tonight?" Emma asked.

"Probably not." Aidan sighed. "Their dad is all messed up. He's not even taking care of them, Emma."

"And that's your problem, how?"

"It's my problem, because... it is. I care about them. Something could happen. He came home stinking drunk last night and probably will tonight as well." Aidan explained.

"So what you going to do? Live there? You think Megan will allow that?"

"I'll talk to her. She'll understand." Aidan said, nodding. "Hopefully their dad will get his wits back about him. Until then, they need someone there. I think that's why Evelyn behaved like that yesterday. They've been all alone. She actually had a conversation with me last night. Me. She despises me, and she did."

"Why does it have to be you, Aidan?" Emma asked, shrugging in honest confusion.

"Because..." He started, and then paused, "I'm all they've got."

Nodding slowly, Emma leaned back in her chair. After a moment, she picked up one of the books on the table, and asked, "What is it that you're studying for?"

"They're books about cancer. Mostly Pancreatic cancer. That's what their mum died of." Aidan explained.

"Why are you reading about it?"

"It's... " Aidan paused, having a hard time getting the word out, "...hereditary."


Emma's gaze snapped back up to him, becoming thoughtful, as she asked, "Do one of them have it, as well?"

"They don't know. They're dad won't let them get tested out of some twisted fear. He's so stricken by grief he doesn't even realize that by waiting he could be killing one of his own daughters." Aidan nearly growled the answer,
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slamming shut the book that he'd been reading, making Emma jump in her seat. The sound resonating through the quiet library, earning him a glare from the librarian. He sent her a forced, apologetic, smile, before he continued in a whisper, "I thought... maybe if I can get enough information about the early stages of it that maybe I can talk him into it."

Emma nodded, and said, "Seems reasonable enough."

"Right," Aidan said, then let out a long, exhausted, sigh, "Except, according to Evelyn, he's not being terribly reasonable these days. I'll need all the help I can get."

Her expression softening, Emma said, "At least you're trying, Aidan. That's a damn slight more than most anyone I know would do."

"Thanks, Emma." Aidan said, but couldn't help but worry if it would be enough.

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Old 01-12-2009, 07:25 PM
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Hey there!

Just wanted to pop in to quickly let you know that you're at about 4,600 words with this. Here's part of our FAQs where we suggest:

Posting:

Any story more than 3000 words is pushing the limit. Nobody but a very sincere and dedicated person will actually read the entire thing and give a detailed critique. If you want feedback, you now know what to do. Note: A long chapter, broken up into several threads and posted on the same day, is acceptable.
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Old 01-18-2009, 09:07 PM
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Ok! =) I'll try to break it up next time! Thanks!!
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Old 01-19-2009, 08:54 AM
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I'm curious about these characters. What is going to happen between Aiden and the two sisters? I almost see a bit of tension and chemistry between Aiden and Evelyn and we see very little of Ember....I'd love to read more. It is kinda long to do a detailed SPAG critique but maybe I'll get around to that later. Interesting start.... Keep it up
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:55 AM
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Thanks!! I really appreciate the feedback!! And I'm so not telling!! lol There's definitely a whole bunch that's going to happen to the characters though that will really change them. It's very exciting to write, because I have a general idea but a lot of what ends up on the paper happens spur of the moment. So we'll see. =)

You did know this was the third chapter thought right? I will probably be redoing the prologue. It seems a bit off from the rest. Just trying to get through the first draft of the book first before I really go back and start twisting and tweaking.

Thanks again!
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:04 AM
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ya I figured out it wasn't the beginning... I started looking at the previous chapters but haven't gotten around to reading all of them.
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