Read Field of Innocence (The Euphoria Series) Online
Authors: Lainy Lane
FIELD OF INNOCENCE
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Field of Innocence
Copyright © 2013 Lainy Lane
All Rights Reserved
Text Copyright 2013 Lainy Lane
Edited By: There For You
Model: Maria Amanda Schaub
Photographer: Helle Gry Schaub
Cover Designed By: Mae I Design & Photography
This is a work of fiction. All characters and events portrayed are fictitious and products of the author’s creation. Any resemblance to actual events or persons, living or deceased, are coincidental.
This book is sold subject to the condition that it will not be lent, re-sold, duplicated, or circulated in any way without the previous written consent of the publisher in any form of binding or cover other than the original form it is published in and without the same conditions being imposed on the subsequent purchaser.
Table of Contents
Chapter Nine: Power & Temptation
Chapter Ten: Field of Innocence
Chapter Thirteen: What is Love?
Chapter Fourteen: Possibilities
Chapter Seventeen: Right & Wrong
Chapter Twenty-Three: Save You
For my husband,
For always believing in me, no matter how crazy the dream. For always encouraging me. For putting up with my crazy obsessions of fantasy worlds, even though you don’t understand them. For knowing me better than I know myself. For never letting me forget my talents, even though I bury them. For knowing I could do this and that I needed to do this. For never leaving my side, no matter how hard I made it to stand next to me. I love you with all that I have.
For my God
For never giving up on me, even when I tried to give up on you. For finding me even in the darkest of circumstances and leading me back home. For giving me comfort in times when it shouldn’t be possible. For allowing me to be a daughter of the one true King. You gave me the talent to write, I vow to use it to bring you glory and I pray that I please you in all I do.
See to it, then, that the light within you is not darkness. Therefore, if your whole body is full of light, and no part of it dark, it will be just as full of light as when a lamp shines its light on you.
Love, hope, and passion ...
These are the true emotions that keep us going daily; the fuel to our fires. A reason to wake up every morning, put our feet on the ground, and go. No matter how hard life gets, these emotions still lay in wait to bring the sunshine back through, eventually. That’s why we keep going, why we keep waiting to see what’s coming up just around the next turn. The decision that we have to make is what we allow our love, hope, and passion to lie in.
Destiny. Some people buy into it, others don’t. Some will base their entire lives around what destiny will do for them. Does destiny make us who we are? Do we have any control over what our lives become, or is everything predestined? Are we simply followers of the uncontrollable? Is there some entity that sits in the heavens with our entire futures mapped out already, laughing at us as we desperately try to mold ourselves into something we can never truly become?
Some say destiny is what keeps us alive. It’s what turns our lives into the wonderment that it’s meant to be. They believe that, driven by passion, destiny leads us into the happiness and fulfillment we were made for.
Others think that destiny can be cruel. They are the ones that would rather stay on a path other than the one they find themselves walking down. Regardless of what you believe, eventually you learn that no matter how hard you try to run, what you’re meant to be will always find you. You can’t hide from your true self, even in times when it’s all you want to do.
Life is fragile, and not only in the mortal sense. It’s like a big glass ball waiting above your head; sometimes one simple event can send the glass crashing down around you into a million tiny pieces. All you can do when this happens is helplessly stand by and watch as the fragments of your world shatter, fall, and settle around you. At this point, you are faced with two choices: you can try and piece the shards back together, or you can start all over and try to build a new life … hopefully a better one.
Somewhere in-between those two options is where you find the person you’re actually meant to be. You find the person who’s strong enough to take the on the world and face what you’re intended for, no matter how impossible that may seem.
The music vibrates through her blood as the noise beats out of the speakers. She can feel her heart pulse in tune with it. Calandra’s body tenses with its every beat. Everything about music makes her feel alive; she needs music to feed her soul. Not that anyone in her family has ever been into music, so where she inherited the love of it is something she’s never understood. Nonetheless, as far back as she can remember, music has always been her muse.
On this particular morning, the tune lifts her more than normal since she’s already in a good mood. Chase, Calandra’s uptight and completely overbearing dad, is leaving in a few days to go on a four-month business project that will take him out of the country. It wasn’t easy to convince him that at seventeen years old, she is perfectly capable of staying home alone while he’s gone. Luckily, by some miracle, he had finally folded and given into her requests. Today is the last day of her junior year in high school, and to top it all off she’s on her way to pick up her boyfriend, Tristan, for school.
Given all of the circumstances, such as being out before the sun is up—which, in Calandra’s opinion is a sign that it’s simply too early to be awake—she still finds herself in a good mood. Her iPod switches songs and she immediately smiles when she hears Paramore. Her fingers subconsciously strum on the steering wheel as her every thought and emotion gets caught up in the song. Just as it happens all too often, the lyrics carry her off to another world, a world all her own.
A black, and seemingly endlessly in deep body of water lies in front of her. She stands, barefoot, on the grainy rocks that surround the murky depths. Everything is completely dark. Shadows seem to loom all around her, waiting to engulf her at any moment. Something floats on the ripples and catches her eye. She walks over to examine it further. Calandra leans over the edge of the water, careful to steady herself as she does so, and peers into the lake. She sees a reflection, but it’s not hers.
Dark blonde, almost brown, curly hair falls far below the woman’s shoulders. The aqua green eyes seem ever so inviting. Her skin is soft and pale—too pale—and her expression is weary.
“Mom?” Calandra whispers softly.
Calandra has only ever seen pictures of her mother, but in them she certainly hadn’t been that pale. Hollyn passed away while giving birth to Calandra. Despite never meeting her mother, Calandra has always felt as if she knew her. Hollyn has been appearing in Calandra’s dreams and thoughts ever since she could remember.
The reflection reaches its arm out toward Calandra. She slowly starts to reach toward her mother’s arm, fully expecting to touch cold water. However, no water saturates her skin. Instead, she feels a hand … her mother’s hand. It wraps around hers, gripping her wrist far too tightly, and pulls Calandra into its depths.
Calandra’s chest freezes and she can’t breathe when she first hits the water. Ice forms inside her chest, thick and heavy. Her lungs fill with fluid and she feels herself start to weigh down and drop quickly. The water is cold and viscous and Calandra can’t see through it no matter how hard she tries. She thrashes her arms around frantically but feels nothing other than the freezing cold icy tendrils as they rush around her and suck her down. Her heart races. She focuses all of her strength, every fiber of her being, toward the effort of swimming back to the surface. Unfortunately, no matter how hard she fights against the currents, she simply isn’t getting anywhere. She feels the hand of her mother wrap around her once more and a sense of security falls over her. She knows she has help now.
But the arm pulls her the wrong way and everything gets darker and colder. She tries to pull away, but there’s no use. Calandra is helpless as her mother pulls her all the way to the bottom. Her legs sink down into the ground and she realizes this is where her life will end. Just as she runs out of breath and is left with no choice but to breathe in a mouthful of the icy water, she jolts back to reality.
She gasps deeply as she tries to catch her breath again. Her heart feels like it is going to beat out of her chest. “Swim in Silence” ends on her iPod and immediately switches to an upbeat tune. Calandra looks around frantically. She blinks rapidly in hopes of making the vision of her mother go away, but it proves to be pointless. A horn honks behind her and she realizes she is sitting in the middle of the road and holding up traffic. She hits the gas pedal harder than she needs to and the car jolts alive, the tires screeching as she speeds off.
“Breathe, Cal,” she reminds herself as she turns up the music to help her calm down.
Her heart begins to slow back to an almost normal rate and the cold, which she somehow still feels in her chest despite now being checked back into reality, starts to subside. She breathes in slowly and blows the breath back out of her mouth, thinking carefully about every move she makes in hopes it will keep her thoughts away from anything else. Warmth slowly creeps back into her as the words of the song that plays through the speakers carries her back into the beat. Once again, her muse takes everything else away and makes the world seem as right as it had been before the daydream.
However, daydream isn’t quite the word Calandra would choose to describe her experiences, but it’s the word her dad always uses. These experiences have plagued her ever since she can remember. They don’t feel like make-believe, but that is of course what her dad has always insisted they are. She feels things in them, smells things in them, and a few times she’s even tasted things. She doesn’t feel like she just gets lost in her thoughts, it all feels real. Sometimes they are about her mother. Sometimes they are about a woman who she assumes to be her great grandmother, even though all she knows about Echo is what little her father—who obviously hated her—had told her several years ago after she described the woman from her experience to him.
“She was a crazy woman, Cal,” her dad had scoffed, “but she did love her family. That’s really all I choose to say about her.” Then, after clearing his throat and rolling his eyes, he had walked away. Calandra hadn’t dared to bring it up again.
Pulling into Tristan’s driveway, she shuts off the car to wait for him. She picks up her cell phone to send him a text and let him know she’s here. Before she can hit the send button, her passenger door opens. Calandra jumps as Tristan’s head pokes in and he laughs at her. Tristan has olive skin and dark hair, which is long enough in the front to cover part of his eyes if he doesn’t sweep it away. His hair spans across his ears and hangs almost to his shoulders in the back. He is on the small side, but much stronger than he looks. He is far from your average high school football quarterback. He wears skinny jeans, Converse shoes, and usually nothing but band T-shirts. Most days he puts color on the tips of his bangs; today the color of choice is blue.
Calandra hates that he lets his hair cover his eyes so much because they are what had first attracted her to him. She finds that no matter how many times she sees him, his eyes still take her breath away when they peer through his hair at her. They are the most beautiful shade of baby blue: crystal clear, bright, and invigorating. Calandra always seems to get lost in them; somehow she knows if she stares long enough she’ll get a glimpse straight into his soul.
“Good morning, beautiful.” He smiles as he gets into the car and gives her a soft kiss on the cheek.
Calandra’s cheeks turn red and she feels the heat rise into them. Somehow, even after seven months together, he still has the ability to make her blush and take her breath away.
“Good morning,” she replies as she puts the car back into gear and pulls out of the driveway. She turns the music down once they are on the road again. Calandra watches the trees and road lines pass them by. She tries to focus on anything she can to keep from reliving the daydream again. Tristan slowly runs his hand through her hair and startles her back to the current moment.
“How did you sleep?” he asks quietly, his finger lingering on the top of her ear.
Her body shudders slightly as she refocuses her thoughts. “Fine.”
Tristan’s hand slides down to the back of her neck. “You okay today, love?” he asks.
Calandra takes a deep breath, unsure of how to respond to that.
Sure, it’s just that I had a vision of my dead mother drowning me in some horrible black lake and came back to reality just as I took my last breath.
She quickly decides that there is no sane response.
“Yeah.” She pauses, planning the words in her head before she speaks them. “It’s just … I had a daydream thing on the way here.”
Tristan is aware of her experiences, which he has always chosen to call them out of respect for her hate of the word daydream. He’s witnessed her having them numerous times. Tristan is the only one she feels she can really talk to about them. He is the only one who doesn’t seem to think she’s insane.
Calandra’s dad had actually sent her to a couple of different therapists over the years, with the hope that they would know how to ‘fix’ her. After the fourth one, Calandra gave in and began to pretend she didn’t have them anymore. Whether Chase truly believes it or not, Calandra isn’t sure. One way or another, it is a subject neither of them brings up any longer.
Tristan, on the other hand, has never judged or treated her differently because of them. He shows nothing except concern for her when she tells him about what she sees. He’s convinced that she actually has a spiritual gift of prophecy, but that she’s fallen too far away from her beliefs for the gift to be able to function properly.
“You probably shouldn’t be driving,” Tristan says as he gently squeezes the base of her neck.
“I’m fine.” She smiles reassuringly at him.
The sun starts to come over the horizon just barely. The clouds blend into multiple shades of pinks and purples. It’s a beautiful morning. The temperature is nice and breezy even though it’s so close to summer. Calandra knows this weather, mixed with the scenery of the rising sun, is exactly the kind of beautiful sight that will take her mind off of her daydream.
“Exactly how set are you on going to school today?” she asks, giving him a slightly devious smile.
Tristan stares at her for a moment, not entirely sure if she’s serious or not. “Why?” He draws out the word.
“I need a distraction. I need … I don’t know. I need to get these images out of my head, and I know where to go to do it. Are you with me?” It rushes out of her mouth; each word trips over the next and forms a jumbled mess.
He gives her a look, slightly biting the left side of his bottom lip as he thinks about what to do. One of the quirks that she loves about him is the way he bites on his lip and twitches his head when he thinks. After a moment, he nods slightly. Calandra pulls off the road they’re on and takes them back in the opposite direction. She has never shared her favorite place with anyone before; the place that she goes to clear her mind and get away when she needs to. She had found it a few years ago. There’s something about it that makes her feel alive. When she’s there she feels like maybe, just maybe, there’s something more out there waiting for her to discover it. She has no idea what that something may be, but something nonetheless.
Calandra’s dad is a very uptight, religious man. He raised her to be that way as well, but much to his disappointment, she hasn’t quite become the girl he had hoped for yet. It’s not that she doesn’t believe in God, it’s just that she still has questions. She has yet to have that breakthrough moment where God and all that comes with Him is just crystal clear. She’s never had the point of grace that takes her from knowing who God is to having a relationship with Him, which has left her wondering if there is such a thing at all.
Her dad had been trying to force her into the experience for years, which hasn’t helped to move anything along any quicker, much to his frustration. Tristan is quite religious as well. His parents are Christians, but they are not pushy about it like Calandra’s father is. Being with Tristan and his family is actually a breath of fresh air for her, and she’s come to enjoy being there even more than being at home, especially of late.
At home she seems to do nothing but irritate and argue with her dad. He pushes the subject of religion, and when she has no answers for him, it turns into a huge ordeal. She has found that no matter how complicated her dad makes things, when she’s in her special place things are different, things just seem right. She feels at peace there, she feels whole when she’s out in nature. Suddenly, her nerves start to build at the thought of allowing someone else into an area that is so sacred to her. Her body tenses a little and Tristan feels it under his hand.
“Are you okay?” he asks nervously.
Calandra nods her head. “Yeah, just still a bit off I guess.”