A/N: This is a new story I've begun. It's quite different from my other one (at least I think so) so please give me reviews with any advice, general comments etc. I already have the next two chapters done, so I'll put them up as soon as I've seen that this chapter has been read a little bit. So, read and enjoy. ^-^

Chapter 1: Prelude

The crash of raindrops thudded above my head. The sound was half soothing, half menacing, especially after what had just happened. Raindrops would splash nonchalantly on the roof only to be replaced with a sudden downpour of leaden rain drowning out all sounds, such as the cars on the highway; the neighbours' party next door; wind howling in the trees; wings pounding the stormy night sky... Wait, wings?

I opened my eyes just in time to see the roof above my head being ripped apart by something with way too many teeth. The scream itching to escape to the now open night air got caught up between paralysis and confusion.

This monster was not trying to eat me - it had outstretched a wet furry claw, about a metre across, and was gently nudging me with its gigantic pale blue head towards it.

"You want me to go with you?" I asked the dripping beast, not really expecting an answer. I was probably dreaming anyway because furry dragons didn't exist; then again –

Again it nudged me with its head. "Yes," I heard in my head.

"Woah!" I started backing away. I needed to wake up. People weren't allowed inside my head, I was only allowed in theirs. The dragon turned its head to the side as if confused and then I saw its eyes widen slightly as they focused on something behind my head.

Suddenly the now black beast turned around and took off, clumsily knocking me over with its spiky black tail. Not again, I thought as I sunk into unconsciousness...

One week before:

"Happy Birthday, Sor!" came the way too cheerful voice from above. I groaned before turning over to greet the owner of the teeth I was seeing.

"Why so early, Jess?" I asked the little bundle of irritation bouncing on my bed.

"It's your birthday!" she exclaimed, as if this answer would explain everything.

"I'm aware of that," I mumbled as I slowly made my way out from the comfy warmth of my bed.

The super-hyper 7-year-old jumped off and managed to stand still long enough to hold out a rectangular-shaped object wrapped in sparkly wrapping paper.

"Happy Birthday!" she buzzed once again.

I smiled and thanked her before accepting the gift. As soon as the present left her hands, she was bouncing again. She is so hyper, I thought, rolling my eyes. In reply, Jess stuck out her little pink tongue before running out my room in the direction of the kitchen.

I sat on my bed to open the present. As I carefully took off the first layer – there were multiple layers – a sweet dropped out onto my lap with a carefully hand-written note: "Hapi SWEET 16!". I laughed silently, removed the rest of the layers and found myself looking at a pencil-crayon drawing of a small girl with brown hair and green eyes holding the hand of a bigger girl with lighter hair and grey eyes. Underneath it said, "Me and my bestest sista".

That's so sweet of her, I thought as I walked into the kitchen. Jess was already digging into her breakfast of Coco Pops and she smiled at me, chocolate-flavoured milk spilling down her spoon onto the floor. But she could be a pain at times. I grabbed a dish-cloth and stooped down to clean up the mess.

"I'll do it if you don't want to," she suddenly piped up and jumped off the chair to finish the job.

Surprised I told her that it was fine, it was only a little spill after all and I was almost done.

As usual, I walked her to school then turned around and walked back to my school which was about half a kilometre away in the other direction. It was freezing cold and the wind was threatening to blow me back to the junior school. Looking at the time, I noticed that it was already 7h45 and I had to be at school by 7h50. I quickened my pace, leaning into the wind to try and push it away.

Suddenly, a car pulled up beside me and the passenger window was rolled down. Please don't be a thief or a kidnapper or a murderer...

"Hey Sor," came my best friend, Amy's voice. She laughed, "We're not going to attack you. Hop in."

I laughed, relieved, and climbed into the sheltered warmth of the car. "Did I really look that scared?" I asked.

"You really looked that cold," she replied.

"Why didn't your dad take you?" her mom asked.

I looked out the window at the rain that was now coming down in sheets. "He's sick."

"But – oh, okay." Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Amy give her mom a look.

The last few minutes were spent in silence and when I got out the car, I ran immediately to the door of the school to shelter from the rain. Amy soon came charging through the door after me.

"Wow, it's really raining cats and dogs out there," she exclaimed, squeezing the water out of her long blonde hair.

I nodded vaguely and started heading towards my classroom.

"Wait," Amy called.

I stopped, turning back to see what she wanted.

"What's wrong with your dad?" she asked, her head tilted slightly to the side.

I scratched my nose. "He's sick," I said. "I told you in the car." I really didn't feel like talking about him.

She frowned before saying, "Tell me later. We need to get to class."

Relieved, I lead the way to our form class. It was all the way on the other side of the school and while we walked quickly and silently to get there on time, I realised that, for some reason, everyone was being really nice to me today.

"Oh, and by the way, happy birthday," Amy wished me before opening the door to the general chaos of our class.

That's probably why.

A/N: Remember that this is the intro so more will happen in the next chapters.^-^