Authors: L. A. Weatherly
Tags: #General, #Fiction
PRAISE FOR THE BESTSELLING
WINNER OF THE LEEDS BOOK AWARD 14-16 CATEGORY
“Packed with suspense and drama.”
The Daily Mail
“Intricate plot twists, lots of action and adventure, a great road trip and a swoon-worthy romance...will leave you breathless.”
Daisy Chain Book Reviews
“Stunning...an awesome read.”
Book Angel Booktopia
“Beautifully crafted, intense and creative paranormal romance... Weatherly’s writing is like a dream.”
Painting with Words
“This book blew me away. It’s fresh, imaginative, hugely entertaining and highly addictive.”
Empire of Books
“Incredibly hard to put down... If you only read one young adult angel book, make sure it’s
Jess Hearts Books
“It’s a sin to miss a book this good!”
Girls Without a Bookshelf
L.A. WEATHERLY was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA. She now lives with her husband and their cat, Bernard, in Hampshire, England, where she spends her days – and nights! – writing.
L.A. Weatherly is the author of over thirty books, which have been published in over ten different languages.
To the memory of my mother,
Billie Cruce Seligman.
Mom, I wish you could have read this book.
First published in the UK in 2011 by Usborne Publishing Ltd., Usborne House, 83-85 Saffron Hill, London EC1N 8RT, England.
Copyright © L.A. Weatherly, 2011
The right of L.A. Weatherly to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988.
Cover photograph of boy by Pawel Piatek.
Cover photograph of girl © Pawel Piatek/Trevillion Images
The name Usborne and the devices
are Trade Marks of Usborne Publishing Ltd.
All rights reserved. This ebook is copyright material and must not be copied, reproduced, transferred, distributed, leased, licensed or used in any way except as allowed under the terms and conditions under which it was purchased or loaned or as strictly permitted by applicable copyright law. Any unauthorised distribution or use of this text may be a direct infringement of the author’s and publisher’s rights and those responsible may be liable in law accordingly.
This is a work of fiction. The characters, incidents, and dialogues are products of the author’s imagination and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual events or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
A CIP catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library.
Epub ISBN 9781409537694
Kindle ISBN 9781409537700
Batch no. 02184-03
T TOOK THE WOMAN A
long time to leave her house.
Across the street, Seb stood propped against a run-down grocery store, hidden in the dawn shadows as he watched the woman’s front door. His high-cheekboned face had a light stubble on its jaw; his lean body was as simultaneously relaxed and alert as a cat’s. He was sure this was the right place. It looked exactly like what he’d seen: a golden-yellow house on the main street, with a panelled wooden door, and a small wrought-iron balcony filled with flowering plants – a jumble of red and yellow. With his hands in his jeans pockets, Seb counted the front door’s panels: ten. Then he counted the flowerpots: seventeen.
, you’re going to be late for work,
The door opened at last and a small, round woman wearing a business suit came out. Fussily delving in her handbag for keys, she finally found them and locked the door behind her, then teetered to her car on plump feet that looked pinched in their high-heeled shoes. By the time she reached the car, she’d somehow lost her keys in her handbag again and had to stand on the sidewalk searching for almost a minute, shaking her head in irritation. Seb held back a smile. Yes, this all seemed very like her.
The moment the woman’s car disappeared around the corner, Seb grabbed a battered knapsack that sat at his feet and slung it over his shoulder. He’d already checked out how to get to the back of the house; now he took a quick second to send his other self flying, making sure the way was clear. It was. He crossed the road, strolling through the early-morning silence. A tall wooden fence bordered the house on one side; Seb jumped to grasp the top of it, vaulting over easily. The back of the house was just like he’d seen, too – a tidy concrete courtyard, again filled lushly with potted plants. A faded deckchair stood folded near the sliding patio door.
The window with the broken lock that had been worrying the woman was up on the second floor. It took only seconds for Seb to scale the trellis and slide it open. He dropped silently into her bedroom – pale green, lots of ruffles. There was a smell of perfume, as if dousing herself had been the last thing she’d done before leaving.
And now she’d be gone for hours. Her job was so far away that she didn’t have time to come home for lunch; it had been one of many niggling concerns on her mind the day before. The woman’s thoughts had been like leaves in a whirlwind: none weighty in themselves, but the overall effect had left Seb with a headache from trying to focus on them. Psychic readings weren’t always an easy way to pick up a few pesos, especially when all he wanted was to get them over with quickly, so he could buy something to eat and get back to the only thing that mattered to him. Even so, he hoped what he’d told the woman had helped. She definitely needed to relax more – though he was glad she hadn’t decided to start doing it today.
Leaving the scented bedroom, Seb started searching, his steps echoing on the tiled floors. Though he rarely broke into houses any more, there’d been a time when he’d done it all too often, with much worse motives than now. Gently, he pushed open doors, peered into rooms. His face creased into a frown. She would
one, wouldn’t she? He hadn’t seen for sure; he’d just assumed. Then on the ground floor, he found it: a computer sitting on a desk in the corner.
Perfect. Seb swung himself into the chair and hit the
button. The local school with its computers the public could use was closed today, and he hadn’t been able to get a bed at the hostel for the last few nights, where he might have borrowed someone’s laptop. He entered a few words into the search engine, typing slowly. A list of options came up; he found the one he was looking for and selected it.