Ashwood by C.J. Malarsky EPUB & PDF – eBook Details Online
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- Author: C.J. Malarsky
- Language: English
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My heart fluttered with anticipation as the minivan rolled into the empty
parking lot. It looked as if no train had passed through the station for years.
The railroad tracks were covered in weeds while hairline cracks splintered
the platform’s pavement. Tall trees encircled the area as if trying to hide the
place like a guilty secret. In faded paint, the name ‘Ashwood’ was written
on a lopsided sign in the corner of the lot.
“Okay, all troops out,” Devin said, clicking off the ignition.
I slid the door open and hopped out into the crisp early October air.
“Where is it?”
Devin nodded toward the west side of the lot. “That way. There’s a path
through those trees. We’re parking here because rolling up and leaving the
van there is a big, red warning light to any cops who might be cruising
I frowned. “But won’t they know something’s up if they see the van
here at this abandoned station?”
“Naw,” Shira chimed in, pulling two folding chairs from the back of the
van. “The area right around here is a public park. This is pretty much the
backside of it. If anyone asks, we’re going to say we’re taking pictures in
the woods. It’s public property, so they can’t do anything.”
Archimedes and I helped her unload a few bags while Devin examined
the camera equipment. We set up the chairs and table next to the van and
Shira dumped out her beauty supplies onto the small surface. When she’d
finished arranging everything, our makeshift beauty parlor was complete.
Shira sat me in the chair opposite her and clipped back my long,
bleached bangs. “Dev, how do you want Willow’s makeup? Last we talked,
you were going for a porcelain doll look. Do you want to keep with that or
were you thinking of a darker, scary ghost girl thing?”
He turned our way and came closer, scrutinizing me. I tried to hold back
a nervous giggle under their intense stares and failed. When Devin first
texted me about this project of his, I knew right away it was only because of
my freakishly large eyes. Mom called me an “unconventional beauty,” but
to the kids at school I was “alien girl.”
Over the years, I had learned to
embrace it and creep them out with vapid stares whenever they pissed me
off. It worked wonders to keep them off my back. And ruined any chance I
might have had of a social life. But who needs classmates when you have a
cool older cousin who lets you tag along to his Dungeons & Dragons
games or weird photoshoots?
Devin’s expression softened and he tugged on my ponytail. “Let’s stick
with the doll look. Even though she’s anything but.”
I stuck my tongue out at him. He walked off, chuckling as I turned back
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