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Starr Fated

BOOK: Starr Fated
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Starr
Fated
By G E
Griffin

G E Griffin has
asserted her right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act
1988 to be identified as the author of this work.

 

This book is a
work of fiction. Names and characters are the product of the
author’s imagination and any resemblance to actual persons, living
or dead, is entirely coincidental.

 

All rights reserved; no part of this publication may be
reproduced or transmitted by any means, electronic, mechanical,
photocopying or otherwise, without the prior permission of the
publisher. 
G E Griffin has asserted her moral right to be identified
as the author of this work.

 

First published
in Great Britain in 2013

Published by G
E Griffin at Smashwords

Smashwords
Edition, License Notes

This ebook is
licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be
re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share
this book with another person, please purchase a additional copy
for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not
purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please
return to Smashwords.com and purchase your own very reasonably
priced copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this
author.

ISBN
978-0-9576745-1-6

Copyright © G E
Griffin 2013

 

Cover design by
Lucy Rose Griffin

http://www.gegriffin.com/

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

To all my
wonderful loyal CG Blog followers, because without them I would
never have had the courage to write my own book.

To Jacqueline
Crowley and Heather Murphy for their help with the chapter set in
Southern Ireland.

To Jane
Harvey-Berrick for all her help and advice about self
publishing.

To Lizzie
Anders for all matters BMW related.

To Nick and
Daniel for putting up with all my weird questions.

And of course
a huge thank you to my husband and my three daughters for their
endless support and encouragement.

Chapter
1
Seraphina


One of these
places is going to have to do, however
disgustingly awful it may be,” I told myself firmly, as I sat on
the tube train one afternoon in September. I quickly scanned again
the details of the three rooms I’d managed to track down as
possibilities to rent for my final year at university. They were
all in a suitably cheap, and therefore rough area of London, but
they were near enough for me to be able to walk to my lectures at
Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design, where I was about
to start the final year of my BA Graphic Design degree.

The snotty cow
in the university accommodation office had tutted disapprovingly at
me having left it this close to the start of term to find somewhere
to live when I asked her for a list of approved places. What she
didn't appreciate was that I had to save up the deposit that’s
always required by landlords, on top of all my normal living costs,
so I’d had to work through the summer holidays before I could sort
out somewhere to live.

I’d spent the
summer sleeping rent free on my friend Abbey’s sofa, but it was not
a long term option. Her parents had paid the rent for her to keep
the house for the whole year instead of just term time, but it was
already bursting at the seams with five other girls sharing, some
of whom had made it pretty plain they thought I’d outstayed my
welcome.

I could have
taken out a student account overdraft with the bank to use for a
deposit, but I preferred to just manage on my student loan - that
was more than enough debt to deal with as far as I was concerned.
And no way was I going down the path of taking out a credit card
and running up huge debts on that as a millstone round my neck. So
I preferred to live frugally and keep within my means as far as
possible.

I’d set aside
the small nest egg my mum had left me when she passed away,
resolving that it was only to be used for absolute essentials, such
as the new laptop I’d had to buy when my old one had finally died,
and the photographic equipment I needed for my course. I hated this
feeling of living hand to mouth, but realistically I knew it
couldn’t be helped when you didn’t have wealthy middle class
parents to support you through university.

I’d never
really known my father. He’d been killed in an accident on the
building site where he was working when I was only two years old,
so I don't remember much about him at all. It meant it was just my
mum and me when I was growing up, and so we were very close. She
never re-married – she simply focussed all her energy on bringing
me up. There was a very strong bond between us as we were so
similar, both having the same creative, artistic nature.

Then, when I’d
only just turned eighteen, my mum was killed as she was crossing
the road one day. She was hit by a stolen car that was being
pursued by the police, and of course it didn’t stop at a pedestrian
crossing. My mum was killed instantly. When it happened and she was
taken from me so suddenly, I felt as if my whole world had fallen
apart, and it took a long time before I was able to function
reasonably normally – most of the time I just operated on automatic
pilot.

But the
strange thing was, although she was no longer physically with me,
sometimes I heard her voice in my head, as if she was trying to
guide and help me. My Irish Grandmother said she could see Mum’s
aura surrounding me, but she was trying to make me feel better I
think. She said all sorts of weird things like that, and my Irish
cousins all believed she had special powers, but I thought they
were just old superstitions that they liked to cling to.

So sadly, Mum
wasn’t around to help me celebrate when I got my place at Central
Saint Martin’s, which is where she’d always hoped I would end up
studying after my foundation course, and she wasn’t there to
support me through the three years of hard work a graphic design
degree demanded. This wish of hers, to see me follow her dream, was
what drove me on when the pressure of trying to keep my head above
water all the time became almost unbearable, and I was tempted to
give up and just get a full time job to earn enough money to live
more comfortably on.

I glanced up
and realised we’d nearly reached my stop on the tube, so I hastily
started gathering all my belongings together. I’d come straight
from my lunch time waitressing job, and I was loaded up with
several bags to carry.

I’d noticed a
tall, blonde haired guy sitting opposite smiling at me. He was
wearing faded blue jeans that looked effortlessly casual, but had
probably cost a small fortune, along with a tight fitting, plain
white T shirt with just a tiny logo on the chest that denoted the
expensive brand. He was hot, no question. He could have been a
model, or at least one of those types who worked at Hollister or
Abercrombie and Fitch, but I ignored him all the same.

The guy
stretched out his long legs so that they took up a lot of the space
in the confined area of the train carriage. He was quite a lean
build, as if he hadn’t quite finished growing to fill out his frame
yet. He looked to be in his early twenties, the same as me. His
dirty blonde hair was messy and tousled, he had cheek bones to die
for, and as he smiled, his soft blue eyes twinkled at me. Yep, he
was seriously gorgeous, and yep, he was definitely smiling at me.
Too bad I hadn’t got time for distractions like him in my life.

Guys seemed to
find me reasonably attractive, but the trouble was my looks were
often a hindrance to being taken seriously. Most men didn’t seem
able to see the real person behind the supposedly pretty face,
assuming that if you had looks, you couldn’t possibly have a brain
as well. And women were often even worse. They could be bitchy and
assumed I was some kind of a man eater, which couldn’t be further
from the truth. I wasn’t interested in their men. I didn’t have the
time or the space in my life for any kind of a boyfriend, although
I did have friends, some of whom happened to be boys.

I inherited my
looks from my mother’s Celtic side of the family. My grandmother
and cousins still lived in Ireland, but my mother had come over to
London to study art and design – until she fell in love and had
ended up pregnant at just eighteen years of age, and so had given
up her studies to get married and have me.

However she
had never lost her imaginative nature, hence her choice of name for
me - Seraphina. She said she’d chosen something unusual to balance
out our very boring surname of Jones. But sometimes bland can be
good; sometimes I’d cursed her for giving me the unconventional
name of Seraphina, because it hadn’t helped me to blend in at
school at all, and that’s why I preferred using Sera most of the
time.

I have dark
brown curly hair, which I keep long and basically just let do its
own thing, as it’s far cheaper and easier than having it cut into
the latest fashionable style. Most of the time I wear it pulled
back out of the way in some kind of a ponytail or braid or updo.
Thanks to my Celtic ancestry, I have unfashionably pale skin which
never tans, and I have green eyes. Witches eyes, my friend Abbey
calls them. I’m not sure if that’s a compliment or not, considering
her extreme tastes. She dyes her hair a none too subtle shade of
bright red, has assorted tattoos and piercings and chooses to wear
clashing colours and patterns, as befits a fashion design
student.

I’m lucky
because we’re about the same size, so she passes on the rejects
from her very extensive wardrobe to me when she gets bored of them,
and they’re always a very welcome addition. Due to my very
restricted income, my wardrobe consists largely of Abbey’s cast
offs, charity shop finds, and outfits sourced from the very
cheapest shops and market stalls in London. I like to think I’ve
developed a talent for picking outfits that look more expensive
than they really are, and sometimes just a simple adaption such as
changing the cheap buttons or adding a belt can make a huge
difference. Like most girls, I love clothes, but I can’t afford
designer labels, and in any case I really don’t think they’re worth
the ridiculous price tags.

I like to mix
up styles to make quirky, unusual outfits – why wear boring clothes
when you don’t have to? And anyway, at Art College it’s the norm,
in fact it’s expected that you dress pretty outrageously. So I
count myself lucky to have a kind and generous friend like Abbey,
who has a very extensive and eclectic wardrobe that she’s happy to
share with me. She also has the most wicked sense of humour. She
loves to shock people with her sometimes outrageous behaviour,
which is not always that hard to do. She claims to be bisexual, and
happily experiments with some fairly liberated behaviour which I
try not to be too shocked by.

As the train
reached my stop, I stood up with my bags, and hefted them onto my
shoulders. I clutched the sheet of directions I’d printed out,
ready to find my way from the station to the first house on my
list.

I made my way
over to the doors as they opened onto the platform, and headed for
the escalator. As I reached the top and walked over to the exit
barrier, I fumbled around to find my handbag, which had my tube
pass in it. I felt a sickening surge of panic sweep over me as I
failed to locate it. Crap, where the hell was it? I frantically
searched through all the bags I was carrying, but my handbag wasn’t
there.

“No, no, no,
please tell me I did not leave it on the train,” I yelled at
myself. “You stupid idiot!”

Everything of
importance was in my handbag – my purse with my money and cards, my
phone, and my battered old iPod. Worst of all, it also contained my
USB memory stick with all my course work on it. No use to anyone
else, but irreplaceable to me. I felt tears pricking in my eyes,
which was stupid. What good would bursting into tears do?

“Shit. Now I
can’t even get out of the station, or phone anyone to come and
help,” I cursed in frustration.

“Is this what
you’re looking for?”

I looked up to
see the tall blonde guy from the train standing there. I felt my
knees literally sag with relief as I saw him holding out my handbag
– it was one of my favourites, a large brown suede one with long
tassels. How on earth I could have left it behind I couldn't
imagine.

“Yes! Oh,
thank you so much, you have no idea how relieved I am,” I
exclaimed, as I heaved a huge sigh of relief, and went over to
retrieve it from him.

“When I saw
you’d left it behind, I called out, but you didn’t hear me, and of
course I didn’t know your name to get your attention,” he explained
with a rather laid back drawl to his voice that immediately
screamed of an affluent middle class background. “So I tried to
follow, but with all the crowds of people I lost sight of you.”

BOOK: Starr Fated
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