A large portion of the book, before I changed it to the final version that was published, focussed on Eve learning how to use her powers. Here Eve struggles with communicating telepathically. This scene comes straight after a conversation where Quinn tells Eve and Seth about the prophecies The Oraculum have about Eve getting married.
‘Ok, so that’s the next thing I want to learn, I want to communicate telepathically.’ I grinned enthusiastically.
Persia rolled her eyes, good naturedly. ‘Aim high eh Eve?’
I looked at her in confusion and back to Izri. Izri smiled. ‘Talking telepathically takes some getting used to, we’ve been doing it our whole lives, but even for us it was tricky to start with.’
‘Oh,’ I felt the smile fall off my face.
‘Eve, it’d be really useful for you to do it, especially if you can communicate with your Guardians telepathically. We can give it a go.’ Persia smiled.
I nodded, keen to get started.
‘Just don’t be too disappointed if it doesn’t work straight away.’
‘Ok, I promise, no disappointment.’
Persia nodded, thoughtfully, looking round the church. ‘It would probably be easier if we tried first with someone you know really well.’ Her eyes lingered on Seth, sitting next to Eli on the window ledge, for a moment, and then moved on. I knew what she was thinking without reading her mind. She knew Seth would be the best for this experiment but after what happened the other day, where I inadvertently downloaded his mind, she wasn’t keen to volunteer him again. I wasn’t keen to hurt Seth again either.
‘Quinn?’ I suggested.
Quinn beamed at me, willing as always to be my guinea pig.
‘Ok, go and sit next to Quinn, and it may help if you touch his head.’
Eli, Seth and Quinn shuffled over so I could sit next to Quinn. I leaned up and gently pressed my fingers to Quinn’s temple, feeling a bit foolish, as he patiently looked down at me. My other Guardians, who had positioned themselves at the two entrances to the church, watched me with interest.
‘Ok, you have to find his mind, just think of him, his smell, the sound of his voice, what he looks like,’ Persia prompted.
I closed my eyes away from the stares of my Guardians. It would be so useful to be able to speak to them telepathically. They were already connected to my mind in ways I couldn’t fathom, understanding my feelings, emotions and what I needed or wanted. It would be good if I could communicate with them more freely, especially if I wasn’t with them. Ok, Quinn first, the Guardians would come later. Suddenly, I could hear something, like lots of muffled voices in my head, so muffled and so quiet that I couldn’t make out anything they were saying.
‘What’s that?’ I asked, straining my ears to make out what the voices were saying. But it wasn’t my ears that were hearing it, it was my mind.
‘What can you hear?’ asked Persia.
I shook my head, shuffling closer to Quinn, wondering if my proximity to him would help, he wrapped an arm round my waist and pulled me closer to him. ‘It’s muffled, like lots of voices, but I can’t make them out.’
‘That’s interesting,’ said Eli, curiously.
My eyes snapped open. ‘What do you mean?’
‘I can hear all the Guardians in my head, all of them, and then I pick out the ones that I want to speak to. Your personal guard are much easier to find than the others, but when I’m not communicating with any of them, I can still hear the others, nothing distinct, just muffled voices, muffled thoughts.’
‘I can hear the Guardians?’ I asked, in disbelief. ‘Can you hear me?’
Eli shook his head. ‘I, we can sense you, feel you, but I can’t hear your thoughts. Not yet anyway?’
‘Ok Eve, concentrate on Quinn. Quinn talk to Eve in your head,’ Persia instructed.
Quinn nodded and I closed my eyes. I thought about his smell, his soothing, calming voice, I listened to his breathing. And then I heard him, in my head, as loud and as clear as if he had spoken out loud. He was singing one of my favourite songs from when I was younger, Green Day’s Time of your Life.
I laughed and the connection was broken. I opened my eyes and smiled at Quinn, who was looking at me in confusion. ‘I love that song, you have a good singing voice, Simon Cowell would definitely be putting you through to the next round.
Quinn’s eyes widened. ‘You heard me singing?’
I sang it back to him but rather tunelessly. Quinn must have got all the good genes, the good looks, the great singing voice, the ability to shift.
‘Eve, that’s amazing.’
‘What my singing,’ I nudged him. ‘Yes beautiful isn’t it.’
‘Eve you actually heard him?’ Persia was shocked.
I nodded. ‘Did you hear me?’
Quinn shook his head. ‘I don’t think so, but I was busy singing.’
‘Let’s try again.’ I quickly closed my eyes, and thought again about his smell, the sound of his voice, the muffled voices were still there. I’d forgotten that I could hear them, and Quinn’s singing had almost blocked them out before. I focussed on Quinn, I could hear him, but this time it was only the odd word, like a phone reception breaking up. He was saying something about his Mum, about my eyes, but I couldn’t pick it out, the rest of the words were seemingly lost in the wind.
I shook my head in frustration. ‘I can only hear a few words, like it’s breaking up,’ I listened harder, trying really hard to focus on what he was saying, but then it was gone and I was just left with the muffled voices of the Guardians.
I opened my eyes, in annoyance. ‘I couldn’t do it that time, not properly.’ I said to Persia.
‘It’ll take time Eve, I’m surprised you could do it at all,’
I sighed and looked back to Quinn, Seth caught my eye over his shoulder and I grinned mischievously at him. He rolled his eyes. ‘Go on then Eve, you might as well have a go with me, you already know what’s in my head, I have nothing to hide anymore.’
Quinn shuffled over so I could sit next to Seth. Seth took my hand. ‘Maybe this will help.’
Quinn tutted but I smiled as I closed my eyes, gently pressing my fingers to his head. He sighed, his warm breath on my face and suddenly, without thinking, I heard him. ‘….I wonder who she’s going to marry, I must ask Quinn about that later…’
‘You will not,’ I replied. I heard Seth gasp and he jerked away from me. The connection was broken.
I opened my eyes, and looked at him warily. ‘Sorry did I trespass on something I shouldn’t have heard again?’
‘No, I was thinking that, so it’s my fault. I just wasn’t ready for it to be that quick,’ Seth replied, taking my hand again. ‘Let’s try again.’
I closed my eyes and found him straight away. ‘You know whoever you marry, won’t be good enough for you,’ he said in my head.
‘IF I get married, he’ll be more than good enough, too good for me in fact.’
‘Rubbish. Who you going to marry anyway, do you know? Is it one of these guys, Eli, Lucas? You like Lucas don’t you?’
‘I do like Lucas yes.’
‘He’s strong, he’ll protect you, he cares about you too, I suppose you could do worse.’
‘IF I get married, I won’t be marrying someone who can protect me, I won’t be marrying someone I like. I’ll be marrying someone I love completely, someone who I will love for the rest of my life, however short it is.’
Seth sighed out loud. ‘Well, if you love him, if you’re happy, then I’ll be happy for you,’ he said in my head.
‘Seth the chances of me getting married are very minimal, the next few years are mainly going to be about that small little job I have to do for the Oraculum, what I was made for. IF I manage to singlehandedly save the world, and IF I’m still alive to see the world I’ve saved, then I’ll think about marriage then.’
‘What do you mean, ‘IF’ you are still alive to see the world you’ve saved?’
‘Is it working, can you hear each other, what’s going on?’ Persia interrupted, impatiently.
I opened my eyes and Seth’s mind was gone, although rather annoyingly, the hum of the Guardians was still present. I’d been so distracted by the conversation me and Seth were silently having, I hadn’t actually appreciated that we were having one. I hadn’t appreciated how I had found him so easily. I grinned. ‘Yeah, Seth that was amazing, I could hear you so clearly,’
He smiled warily, still confused over what I had said, but then his smile grew. ‘Actually yeah, that was pretty cool, having you in my head.’
Persia clapped her hands together excitedly. ‘It really worked, that’s fantastic, it’s probably because you know each other so well.’
I smiled at Seth wistfully. ‘How does it work?’ Change of subject. ‘Can you talk to me?’ I asked.
‘Yep, it’s pretty cool isn’t it?’ Persia laughed in my head.
‘Why haven’t you done this before?’
‘Because if you’re not expecting it, it’s a bit weird to have someone walking round in your head, hearing voices that shouldn’t be there.’
‘So is proximity a factor, do I have to be near the person, or touching them?’
‘No, it helps. The closer you are to the person, physically and emotionally, the easier it is to find their minds, over great distances it’s harder. A lot harder. When Clementine went to New York recently, I could still communicate with her, but I know her mind very well. Other than my family, I don’t think I could find anyone else’s mind so easily over great distances.’
‘Eve, do you want to try me next,’ Eli offered.
I nodded. It was like musical chairs as Seth shuffled down to sit next to Quinn and I took his place next to Eli.
I closed my eyes and touched Eli’s head. The hum of the Guardians was still there, so Eli shouldn’t really be too hard to find.
‘Is it Eli, is that who you’re going to marry?’ Seth asked in my head.
‘Seth will you let it go,’ I sighed. ‘I’m trying to concentrate here.’
‘I’m just saying, you deserve someone who will love you. The Guardians aren’t really capable of love.’
‘Ok, Ok I’ll be quiet,’ he said.
I listened to the silence for a moment. ‘You’re still there aren’t you?’
He laughed out loud.
‘What?’ Persia asked, confused.
‘Seth’s distracting me,’ I laughed.
‘I’ll be good, I promise,’ he said.
I concentrated on Eli, on finding his thoughts, I concentrated on sifting through the humming, but I had no idea what I was looking for, what Eli’s mind sounded like or felt like. I shook my head with frustration. ‘I can’t find you.’
‘Ok Eli, how about you find Eve’s mind, once she hears you in her head, she might then be able to find your mind easier,’ Persia suggested.
I opened one eye briefly to look at Eli, who now had a distant look in his eyes, as if he was trying to remember something.
‘Erm hello Eve, can you hear me?’
Bless him, small talk really wasn’t his forte. I closed my eyes again. ‘Yes Eli I can.’
‘Ok let me try to find you.’ I searched the hum for the sound of Eli’s voice, there was one part of the hum that sounded familiar, so mentally I drifted towards it.
‘I’m hungry, I should have eaten something this morning, maybe I’ll get a burger for lunch.’
I laughed out loud and opened my eyes looking across the church to Lucas, he blushed as he realised I had heard him.
‘I’m hungry too Lucas,’ I grinned at him. I frowned at this as I realised I was hungry, it hadn’t been that long since I had eaten.
Persia didn’t need to read my mind to know what I was frowning at. ‘It’s like running or doing exercise, you’re using up your energy by using your powers, so you will get hungrier more quickly. Maybe we should take a break for a while.’
‘Nah, I’ll be ok for a while. Let me try to find Eli again,’ I closed my eyes, but no matter how hard I looked I couldn’t find Eli. I looked for Lucas instead, I had already inadvertently found him, but the hum was just that, a hum, nothing distinct, nothing I could cling too.
I opened my eyes in disappointment. ‘Let’s try something else. How about those fireballs? Might as well be rubbish at something else as well’