To Know Me
by Marcy Blesy
Summary from Goodreads:
To know me is to die...
Seventeen-year-old Mae is convinced that the consequences of her poor decisions have caused the untimely deaths of her dad, sister Laura, and grandma who all die within a year, no matter how ludicrous her thoughts seem to those she loves. The solution? Run away so no one else she cares for gets hurt (even if she has to keep a GPS tracker on her phone at all times).
Desperate to earn her diploma and salvage something of her life, she transfers schools when people get too close. After switching to Woodson Prep with only two months to go until graduation, Mae keeps her goals in sight. But when she meets Ty, the "perfect boy" with his own secrets and a relentless interest in Mae, she must decide if she can stop running from the past and still protect those she loves.
To know me is to die. I mean, to really know me, like when you know I can run for hours without so much as a water break, or that cinnamon sugar doughnuts are my weakness, or that my dad gave me a whole different name. But I don’t let people get that close. I’ve learned the hard way. Too many people die in my life. Grandma said I was only unlucky.
“It’s not your fault all those people you love die. It’s just bad luck that you’ve had to deal with grief so young. Not fair at all,” she’d said. That was right before she died on my seventeenth birthday and right after my sister Laura, my dad, and my dog Petie.
I direct Mom Number 4 toward the front door of the high school. I always get a new mom when I transfer schools. I have yet to find a school that allows a seventeen-year-old to register herself. I wanted to graduate in Ohio, but too many people started asking questions. They weren’t important questions. Just stuff like, “How come I can’t ever come over to your house?” or “Why won’t you ever talk about yourself?” or when I do, “That’s not what you told so-and-so.” I had to leave. To let people into my life isn’t an option anymore. But, there’re no worries anyone will start to ask questions here. It’s already March. That diploma is as good as mine. Then I can enroll in online college and try to salvage something of my pathetic life.
“This seat taken?” I look up and into the wide smile of the Pacific Ocean. It’s Ty.
“Are you always happy?” I can’t help but ask.
“Wow, that’s a great greeting. No, I’m not actually. I’m just trying very hard. I’ve been assigned to show you around, and you keep blowing me off.”
“Consider your assignment complete. I can find my way around.”
“Have you considered that perhaps you’d fit in here a bit better if you let people talk to you? And that if you did, you weren’t such a bitch.” Oh, good, I’ve achieved bitch status, and it’s only day two. Perfect. Now everyone will leave me alone.
“Just go,” I say. The last thing I need is to get close to a boy and not just for his safety.
“Is this for me?” I ask as Ty stands in the center of the clearing with a yellow rose in one hand.
“No. It’s for that grandma who’ll be passing this area in about ten minutes. I’m just practicing my delivery.” He’s so cute when he’s being sarcastic. I take the rose. In an instant I am shocked back to the day of Laura’s funeral. Everyone in her sixth grade glass brought roses to the cemetery to lay upon her grave, yellow ones, her favorite color. “Why aren’t you smiling?” Ty asks. “Did I do something wrong?”
“Your hand is shaking,” he says coming over to my side. “Sit down.” He points to the picnic table. “Mae, if you don’t tell me anything I won’t ever be able to help you. I want to help you. I know what it’s like to need help. There’s a lot you don’t know about me, too. And I’m willing to tell you. It’s weird because I hardly know anything about you, but I feel like we’re a lot alike.”
“We’re nothing alike,” I say. I want to tell him. But if I do? Then what? He won’t understand. No one does.
“Is yellow not a good color for brunettes?” he jokes. I can’t help but smile. He takes the rose, breaks off the stem, and tucks it behind my ear. He leans in to smell the rose and kisses my cheek. Only the crunching of sticks from the older couple on the path stops him from reaching my lips.
About the Author:
I am a former elementary school teacher and currently run an elementary library which is the perfect job for my interests.
In October 2010 I had an essay published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories For Mothers. Another essay will be published in November 2013 in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Just Us Girls.
In 2012 my debut picture book was released by Bronze Man Books. Am I Like My Daddy? follows the journey of a child who seeks to learn if she is anything like the dad who died when she was young.
My middle grade novel, Confessions of a Corn Kid, as well a YA short story trilogy, The Lexie and Rhett Chronicles, and To Know Me, were released direct to kindle in 2013.
I am a great eavesdropper and person profiler which proves a fabulous advantage for a writer. As my favorite shirt says, Be careful or you’ll end up in my novel.
2 e-book copies of To Know Me (mobi) (US)
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