Seeking Fate(9)

By: Brenda Drake

“Daisy, what are you saying?” Iris stomped her foot. “He doesn’t know about that stuff.”

Insulator? His aunt had mentioned that before, but he wasn’t sure what it was. “I know about fate changers. Miri told me.”

“See,” Daisy said as if the word burned her tongue. “Of course, she did.”

Iris glanced at Andrei. “She’s right. She won’t hurt us, but she could kill herself.” She directed her glare at Daisy. “You heard Miri. You have to stop changing fates. Something bad could happen to you.”

“I can’t just let—”

“Let others suffer?” Iris shook her head. “What about you suffering? You’re damaging your organs with each change.” She sighed, a deep one that told Andrei that they’d had this conversation before and Iris was getting nowhere with Daisy.

“I’m fine,” Daisy said.

“I give up.” Iris spun around to leave at the same time two bikes came speeding by, and she collided into them. It was a sickening mix of sounds—a loud thwack, Iris’s bloodcurdling scream, metal crashing against cobblestones, and a bone-splitting crack.

Chapter Three


Well. Today definitely got worse.

Water gurgled out of the faucet. Daisy caught some in her cupped hands and splashed her face. It was a cold slap against her skin. She was so tired that sleeping on the hard floor might have been an option if her sister didn’t need her.

The paper-towel dispenser was empty.

“Great. Just Great.” She dried her face on the sleeve of her hoodie. The day was proving to be a disaster. From her awkward meeting with Andrei to Iris breaking her leg. “Now what?” she asked her reflection in the water-stained mirror.

It’s over.

There was no way Iris could continue with a broken leg. Plus, she needed her insurance information, which meant they’d have to contact their mother, and then their plan would be ruined. Their mother wouldn’t let Daisy travel Europe unsupervised.

After redoing her hair into a bun, she left the bathroom. The hallways were quiet and smelled like the hospitals in the United States; disinfectant lingered in the air, coffee left on the burner too long scented the corridor.

Iris and Andrei glanced over when Daisy entered the room. Iris rested against the pillows on the bed, her leg in a fiberglass cast and propped up on some pillows. Andrei sat on Iris’s suitcase, his forearms resting on his knees.

Were they talking about me?

Iris knew her sister’s paranoia well. “We were only discussing a plan.”

“What plan?” Daisy crossed the room to the plastic chair beside Iris’s bed she’d abandoned to go to the restroom.

“I just spoke to Reese’s parents,” Iris said. “They’re picking me up this afternoon. I’ll stay with them. You and Andrei will continue with the original plan. Just less me.”

“You’re supposed to be my chaperone. Mom will kill us.” Daisy frowned and looked over at Andrei. He grinned at her and shrugged.

Iris reached over and grabbed a cup from the tray beside the bed. “Mom will never know. Reese’s parents think I’m traveling with friends. They wanted to call Mom, but I said that I already spoke to her. Just stick with the plan. It’ll be fine.” She took a sip from her cup.

Alone? Daisy’s eyes went from Iris to Andrei. With him?

“What could happen?” Andrei’s grin tightened. “Besides, you’ll get tons of stuff to put in those scrapbooks of yours.”

She didn’t know his face well, didn’t know what each of its expressions meant, but she knew his voice. From late night whispers to early morning grumbles, every fluctuation was burned into her memories, and the encouraging look on his face right then, didn’t match the concern in his words.

“Listen.” Iris put her cup back on the tray. “You’ll be fine. Andrei has traveled around Europe before. And you’ll be back before Mom and the others arrive for Aster’s wedding. But you have to leave now. The Van Burens will be here soon.”

Daisy bit her lip.

It’s just a train ride. A few stops. Easy really. What could go wrong? If they followed her schedule, they’d be back two days before her family arrived.