TITLE: The Words of Adriel
GENRE: MG Urban Fantasy
Go to your room. Close the door. Lock it. Light a candle. Turn out the lights. Before you read further, recite aloud the following words.
I cast aside the shadows that follow me. I shed myself of all which is unholy. Cloak me from the ones who seek to do me harm. Protect me. Guard me. Keep me.
Good. They won't be able to watch you now. Under no circumstances read beyond this point unless you've followed my directions. Otherwise they'll know I've told you. You'll start to hear them. At first you'll think they're just voices in your head, but they'll grow louder, whispering in your ears all sorts of horrifying things that will keep you awake at night. Then you'll see them. Everywhere. In the eyes of your friends, down dark alleys, when you're alone. They're always there when you're alone. Keep the candle burning. Keep the door locked. And whatever you do, do not turn on the lights.
It began with a book. Bound in leather and stuffed with worn, yellowing pages, the book found me. It sat just out of reach on the top shelf of the school library, surrounded by other books, but alone nonetheless. Its torn spine caught my attention as I searched the fiction section for the next crime novel to help me fall asleep at night.
My psychiatrist had recommended reading to put an end to my insomnia. I know, right? What thirteen-year-old suffers from insomnia? Give me a break.