By: Jaimie Roberts

Chapter 1


Buckinghamshire, 1991

I started back at school today. I hated school. The only person who made school fun was my friend Ian, but because he was nearly two years older than me, I only ever got to see him at play times. I was standing by my normal spot at the bike shed. That’s where Ian and I always knew where to find each other, no matter what.

“Tyler, there you are. I’ve been looking for you.”

Ian had his school uniform on, but he always managed to wear it untidily. Every time I saw him, he made me giggle. His hair was lighter now that the summer was over. Even my hair looked white compared to my normal light blonde. Ian and I had spent most of the summer playing in our hometown of Buckinghamshire, but we spent some of that time at my parents’ home in Tuscany. We owned a villa in the rolling hills there, surrounded by lots of sunflowers. I loved sunflowers. My daddy always picked one for me every time we went. I was six-and-a-half now, and my daddy said I got bigger every time he saw me. Considering he got to see me every day, I found it hard to believe.

As Ian came closer, I noticed there was a boy right behind him. I wasn’t sure what happened to me, but the minute I saw him, my stomach started feeling funny. He looked really nice with black spiky hair and light blue eyes. He had his school tie on, but it was loose and kind of scruffy-looking. He was dressed just like Ian, but this boy made it look better somehow. When he saw me, he smiled and my cheeks started burning a little.

“Tyler,” Ian said, waving his hand in front of me. “This is Dean. He’s just moved here with his parents. He’s in my class now.”

I smiled at Ian, then turned back to Dean. For some reason, I just wanted to stare at him. I didn’t know why I did, but he just seemed so…nice.

“Hello,” Dean said, giving me a funny grin.

“H-Hello,” I said, feeling my cheeks burn again.

“Have you been running or something?” Ian asked. “Are you sick? Your face is really red.”

I turned away, feeling really silly. I couldn’t understand what was wrong with me all of a sudden. “I’m fine,” I said, trying to turn my head even further away, but Dean came up to me.

Placing a hand on my cheek, he frowned. “You do feel a little hot. Do you want to go and sit down?”

I suddenly couldn’t move my legs because I was worried if I did, Dean would move his hand away. I was about to agree, but then I heard giggling, making me jump.

Turning my head, I saw Tim with a couple of other boys. I hated him. He was always chasing me in the playground and pulling my hair.

“You got a new boyfriend, Tyler?!” he shouted with a giggle. “It didn’t take you long, did it?”

If I thought it couldn’t get any worse, the boy next to him started shouting, as well, “Yeah. You better watch Ian doesn’t get jealous.”

I felt the tears well up in my eyes, but I was determined not to let them see me cry. “Shut up, Tim!” I shouted back.

“Or what?” he asked with a snort. “Are you going to set your new boyfriend on me?”

All the boys started laughing. Suddenly, Dean went up to the boy and punched him in the face. Everyone in the playground screamed and Tim bent over, holding his bloody nose.

“Don’t you ever talk to her like that again, do you hear?!” Dean screamed, yanking at his shirt collar.

Tim’s eyes went wide. He was afraid of Dean? I had never seen Tim afraid of anybody. It made me like this new boy even more.

Tim nodded, but before he could speak, a teacher came over and took Dean and Tim away. Dean followed the teacher, but he looked back one last time with a smile and a wink.

I smiled right back at him.


It happened again today. I got back from work late and decided I should pick up another burger on my way home. This deadline my editor was imposing on me was going to kill me.

Walking into my apartment, I immediately noticed it. My pen. I left it on the dining room table, and now it had been moved back to my desk. It sat there as bold as brass. He may well have hung an “I’m here!” sign on my wall.

This had been going on for quite some time now. It was just little things like pens out of place, or clothes, which were hanging over my wardrobe door, were now miraculously folded back up inside my wardrobe. It was subtle little things, but things nonetheless.

When this all started three years ago, I was wondering whether I was going out of my mind. It wasn’t until I deliberately put a blanket on my sofa, then later found it right back where I retrieved it from that I knew I wasn’t going crazy. Someone was going through my house and moving my things. Why? I really couldn’t tell you. I just thought it would be good to document everything that happened, just in case this person suddenly came in the flat and thought it would be a good time to murder me.

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