Beginning of "Star Crossed"

By Amanda Harris


I have never been out of Miami. Until I was seven I lived in a hundred year old house by the sea. Then my Mom died and I was swept into the penthouse at the top of Daddy’s downtown skyscraper. I have lived at the top of this tower for eleven years.
Two of the walls in my room are made of glass. When I was a small girl I used to pretend that I was a princess, high over the ocean, preparing for the day when the sea creatures would crown me their Queen. A prince charming never came in to play in these fantasies. I never felt the need to be saved, even if I was a lonely princess high in a tower.
Dad hired Lorelei to take care of me. She was only fourteen when she came to us, twice my age but still too young. She had trouble with human languages, but she was well versed in the magic, and Brazilian jujitsu. My Dad saw her as a natural fit as a nanny/body guard/ best friend/ Mother figure.  Dad always treated  her like another daughter and most people thought she was my sister. She taught me the ancient words that have been lost even by the Folk, and each and every day without exception she and I spar until one of us is flat on our back or broken.
Today I have finals in my third semester at University of Miami yet she still challenges me to a fight. At twenty-five she is stronger than she was when she began training me all those years ago. But I have come a long way from the lonely seven year old motherless child, who would tap out crying within ten minutes of each session.
“C’mon Morgan, you’re getting soft on me.”
Lorelei moved around me in a blur but I reached out my hand and easily found her hand, applying the right amount of pressure until I heard the satisfying ‘pop’ of the dislocation of her wrist. Lorelei grinned at me with an unmistakable sparkle in her eye and bowed to show that I won this round. I turned my back on her and walked out of the room.
“Good luck on your finals Morgan,” She called as I shut the door to the training room behind me.
Each day I need sun. It is not just because I am a Miami girl. I literally need the sun to recharge me. On my way to the roof my Dad tracked me down.
“Morgan, next time try to cut Lorelei some slack.”
“Dad you know she heals in like five minutes, and she would not let me leave  until I’ve proven myself,” I pouted just a bit when I replied.
“That is not the point” he called behind me as I continued up the stairs.
I admit that I felt a little pride at being told to go easy on the same person who nailed me to the ground so many times I could not count. But I could not let Dad see that.
“Sure Dad.”
“Good luck on finals,” He called as the door to the roof sealed shut behind me.

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