Zephyr Doyle is focused. Focused on leading her team to the field hockey state championship and leaving her small town for her dream school, Boston College.
But love has a way of changing things.
Enter the new boy in school: the hockey team’s starting goaltender, Alec. He’s cute, charming, and most important, Alec doesn’t judge Zephyr. He understands her fears and insecurities—he even shares them. Soon, their relationship becomes something bigger than Zephyr, something she can’t control, something she doesn’t want to control.
Zephyr swears it must be love. Because love is powerful, and overwhelming, and…terrifying?
But love shouldn’t make you abandon your dreams, or push your friends away. And love shouldn’t make you feel guilty—or worse, ashamed.
So when Zephyr finally begins to see Alec for who he really is, she knows it’s time to take back control of her life.
If she waits any longer, it may be too late.
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
I pick up the landline, dial Mom’s cell. It takes too long to connect. There is only the static silence of a dead line, and that’s when I know I’m not alone.
I drop the phone onto its cradle and eye the door, my car keys on the floor in my path. In seconds I calculate how my body will need to scoop the keys as I run from the house. I move just as a metallic snap echoes from under the house.
In the basement.
Someone has thrown the main switch, pitching me and this house and my escape into blackness.
Fear roils in my blood. Becomes me. I kick around for my keys but with each sweep, I am losing time.
I reach for the island, my eyes adjusting, carving light into the shadows. The smell of spearmint bleeds through the air, through my memory, as my senses conjure the last time panic joined me in this space. And how my fingertips reached for the knife set even then. But the block of knives is gone now. The counter cleared. I open a drawer, rifle for utensils, scissors. My fingers meet with the smooth wood of inner drawer and nothing else. I fumble around the sink, but even Mom’s pruning shears are missing.
The phone rings and I freeze from the impossibility of its sound. A second ring sears through silence. I wade across the black, remove the handset, place it at my ear.
I pray that it’s anyone besides him.
Terror climbs the ladder of my spine. My voice, reluctant. “Hello?”
Then the dial tone cries beep beep beep and I hang up, quickly dial 911. But he’s quicker.
The line falls dead again.
He’s in the basement, where the phone line enters the house.
But then, no.
He could be outside. At the junction box.
All at once the woods outside feel too hungry, haunted.
My body tells me I need to flee, protect. My brain tells me to fight, engage. I tuck into the forgotten corner of the laundry room, quiet as my fear, and wrap my hands around the butt of my field hockey stick. I hold it tight against my chest, a weapon.
I try to reverse my breathing. Make it soundless. Make it so I cannot be found. The darkness is a comfort, a cloak. I blend into it. For anonymity. For safety. There was a time when I feared darkness. As a child. Alone.
Darkness doesn’t have fingers that twist into my flesh. Darkness can’t stalk me. It can’t drive me into the shadows because darkness is fleeting. Not like the threat before me.