Shadows Gray - By Melyssa Williams

Chapter One

By all accounts, as well as I can say, I am 18 years old now, but I could be as old as perhaps 20 or as young as 16. I have slept and woken in 13 different eras now, and now I am in America in the twenty first century. This is a difficult time to be Lost.

My name is Sonnet Gray and I was born in 1737. My mother was born in 1880 and my father in 1174. We are Lost, like our ancestors before us. I remember nothing of the eighteenth century, at least not during the time of my birth or during the four years of my life. I do recall visiting it briefly again, but it was never home to me. I even hated it and couldn’t wait to leave as it reminded me of my sister whom we had left behind. Each time I saw a babe in white lace I thought of Rose, and each time I saw a young beautiful woman with light blue eyes, I startled, thinking could it be Rose? I wondered if she lived her whole life in that century, while her mother and father and sister had been forced to move on. Before I even had another birthday however, we were lost again, my father and me.

My mother, shaken with sorrow and drunk with sadness, had not made it even a month after we left baby Rose. Desperate to find her, and sick with the guilt she could not rid herself of, she neither ate nor slept until she was a hollow wraith of a woman, empty and void. It doesn’t seem as though I should remember her at all, yet I do. She was a vague, shadowy woman with yellow hair and a listless voice. I don’t remember Rose well though, and I only have Dad’s tales in lieu of my own recollections. I do know she had flaxen hair – golden like our mother’s, and that her eyes were like mine – a disconcerting light blue – also from our mother. While I am taller than average with long legs and arms, Dad said Rose was a tiny thing, bird-like. She was three years old and I four the night we disappeared and she stayed behind. It was the first leaving we had been subjected to since her birth and no one could have predicted that she wouldn’t possess the same ability her family did. She wasn’t the first child of course who wasn’t Lost, and there are always whispers as to why some cannot wake in different centuries the way their families can. Half siblings for instance, rarely have enough magic (for lack of a better word) in their blood to accomplish it. The sickly…. There have been cases of the ill or very old and frail being left behind. We will never know what happened that night. We only know that we woke up in Italy in the 1500s and Rose had not passed through time with us. Mother grieved and grieved for two weeks, either sitting motionless in one position for frightening amounts of time, or pacing, agitated and restless outside in the sun. When she was tired of grieving, she combed her hair, put on a cornflower blue dress that my father had stolen for her, and calmly walked off a cliff.

My father started drinking heavily that night, and he has not stopped since.

The first few months were frustrating for me. I arrived in this century for the first time and found it incredibly fast-paced and overwhelming, noisy and confusing. Everyone had gadgets pressed to their ears and they drive cars instead of walking. I had never seen automobiles before, but of course I had heard of them through people who had traveled much further in time than I had. I found out quickly enough that I need papers to identify myself if I wanted a job, a house, anything. A mutual friend of a mutual friend, who was shady to say the least, stole an identity for me that came with a number. A “social security” number. I didn’t like being assigned a number, but we needed to get a place to live. It was winter - Dad was sick again and so was Prue. So, for several months I became Emily Winn. I told people that I preferred to go by my middle name, Sonnet, (so I could hold onto some semblance of myself). Finding a job was not easy, but