INTO THE SPIRAL by Erin Danzer
Seventeen-year-old Veronica “Ronnie” Lambert wants to get out from under her older brother’s shadow. When Ronnie gets a tattoo and then is struck by lightning, she suddenly finds herself able to see and hear things in shadows that don’t appear to others. Then Ronnie meets Gavin Clearwater, the hot new guy in all of her classes and finds out he can see and hear the same things she can.
Gavin tells her about the Spiral Defenders, a group of warriors that travels through space and time to defend the planets of the Spiral. After meeting the Commander of the Spiral Defenders and realizing his intentions might not be pure, Ronnie struggles between following her destiny to become a Spiral Defender and trying to regain the life she had before being struck by lightning.
She looked and gave a little wave before turning to walk into her room only to find her way blocked by yet another guy. This school seemed to be crawling with hotties! This one was only a few inches taller than her, kind of short for a guy, with straight black hair and dark slightly slanted eyes. He wore black cargo pants, a black t-shirt that did nothing to hide his six-pack abs, and black combat boots. He looked her up and down and arched an eyebrow as he stepped aside.
“After you, Princess,” he said, making a sweeping gesture with his arm as he slightly bowed. Ronnie didn’t know whether to be appalled or to laugh at him and didn’t have time to make up her mind as their Homeroom teacher asked if they would be joining them today. Cheeks flushed, Ronnie walked into the room and sat in the first available seat. The guy in the doorway sat at the desk behind her and gave a small smirk that she pretended to ignore. Who the hell did this guy think he was? She looked across the room and smiled when she saw Shawn sitting in the back corner. He smiled and nodded when he saw her and her heart fluttered.
“Boyfriend, or someone you wish was?” the boy behind her whispered. Ronnie rolled her eyes. Her shoulders tightened as she tried to ignore him but he wasn’t going to be dissuaded so easily.
“Huh, well, if you’re not going to answer, then I’m going to have to guess,” he continued. “My guess would be that he’s not your boyfriend but you want him to be. Since you didn’t walk in with him, it makes me wonder if he’s even interested in you. What is he, an oblivious friend? Or does he not even know you exist? Is that what this outfit is for; so he will finally see you?”
Ronnie’s ears reddened and it took the last of her willpower to keep from turning around and telling him to shut up. She clenched her hands together on top of her desk, praying the teacher would call on either one of them just so he would stop talking. A million comebacks flashed through her mind, but she ground her teeth, knowing she would never say any of them. Despite her promise to herself to become her own person, she really didn’t know how to go about doing that. She thought it would be easy once she got the tattoo, but she knew she was failing. Even showing it off this morning, the little bit that she was able to, had taken more courage than she normally possessed—and she hadn’t even had the satisfaction of Shawn seeing it.
Thinking about Shawn took her mind off the jerk behind her and she managed to tune into what the teacher was saying. Unfortunately, it wasn’t that interesting (all about locker assignments and hall passing times) so she tuned out as quickly as she’d tuned in, her mind wandering back to Shawn. She snuck another peek at him and was thrilled to find him watching her—or at least that’s what it looked like at first. He was actually looking at something behind her. She moved her head to get a better look and felt a tug on her hair.
“Stop moving; I’m almost done,” the guy behind her muttered. Ronnie spun around.
“What the hell do you think you’re doing?” she shrieked, unable to pretend ignorance anymore. She ran a hand over her hair and found a thin lock he had apparently been braiding. Her eyes narrowed as the rest of the class waited for his reaction. Even the teacher had stopped talking.
“I was bored,” he muttered. “And your hair is really pretty.”
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