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Same utter chaos.
I jerked away from him and into a girl. I now had an audience. Students surrounded me, and every one I touched died.
Same utter chaos.
One after the other until I finally lunged into the bathroom and locked myself in a stall. The shock of each death shuddered through me as I heaved my lunch into the toilet. When the spasms eased, I spit out the sour taste and tried to clear my head. To understand what I was seeing.
Something changed. Something happened in the last few minutes that altered the fates of every kid at school. But they were in different places. On the water. In a storm shelter. In Town Hall. Fleeing the country in a chartered Leer jet. And it wasn't just them. It was their brothers and sisters, their parents and friends. In exactly seven days, everyone in the city of Bangor, Maine, was going to die. But somehow, I didn't think it would stop there.
Something was different. What could have- Then it hit me. The boy. The tug at my coat. I reached into my pocket and pulled out a note. It was the third one I'd received in quite the same manner. Stuffed into the pocket of my jacket when I wasn't looking.
Dread consumed me as I opened it. This one had a stick figure drawing of two people, a boy and a girl. The girl-who I was going to a.s.sume was me since she had garishly red curly hair-was lying on the ground, presumably dead. Blood pooled on her chest and sat in puddles around her head and torso. The boy clutched a knife in his three-fingered hand, but he was leaning over her. Over me. And a darkness was leaving her mouth and entering his. Like he wanted what was inside me. Like he welcomed it.
And somehow he knew. When I was six years old, I had been possessed by a demon. A demon that was still inside me. But no one here knew that. How could they? And yet this boy did.
Five words made up the text of the note. I read them over and over in disbelief. Fear darkened the edges of my periphery. Five words. Five words that had the power to make the darkness inside me quake and buck inside my body. Five words that would change the fate of the world. Five words that read simply, I know what you are.
ALSO BY DARYNDA JONES.
Death and the Girl Next Door.
Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet.
Third Grave Dead Ahead.
Second Grave on the Left.
First Grave on the Right.
Praise for Death and the Girl Next Door.
"Unique, witty, and touching-I LOVED THIS BOOK!"
-P. C. Cast, New York Times bestselling author of the House of Night series "This book will keep you hungry for more from beginning to finish! You'll know enough to follow the story, but very little is given away throughout the novel, to keep readers constantly guessing. What a tease! If you're a fan of romance and fantasy, you'll definitely enjoy this book!"
-Miss Literati "Outrageously funny, sinfully s.e.xy, with a cast of characters that steals your heart from the very first page ... I loved this book!"
-Inara Scott, author of the Delcroix Academy series "She hits plenty of b.u.t.tons: impossibly handsome boys, supernatural powers, hot romance, friendship, school rivalries, suspense, and comedy."
-Kirkus Reviews "Death and the Girl Next Door is unputdownable. Darynda Jones breathes fresh life into the young adult genre with exciting twists to legends we only think we understand and edgy, compelling characters you can't help but care about."
-Gwen Hayes, author of Falling Under "Only Darynda Jones could make the Angel of Death crush-worthy! Wickedly sharp with brilliant wit, Death and the Girl Next Door will leave you craving more!"
-Lara Chapman, author of Flawless "The delightful Jones makes a smooth transition to YA in this really fun read. Her kicky dialogue and great characters are super entertaining, and the story unfolds with some surprising twists. Add in some laugh-out-loud moments, a hot hero, and a satisfying but cliff-hanger-y ending and you've got a hit."
-RT Book Reviews "Snapping with sarcasm and a pitch-perfect voice, Darynda Jones has brought her signature humor and supernatural sa.s.s to Riley High. Trust me, there's nothing grim about this reaper!"
-Roxanne St. Claire, New York Times bestselling author of Don't You Wish "Death and the Girl Next Door delivers a smokin' hot story and a guy to die for. Darynda Jones gives one candy-smacking, awesome read that won't let you go until the end."
-Shea Berkley, author of The Marked Son.
"I loved this book. Death and the Girl Next Door is equal parts funny, thrilling, and hot. Teens will fall hard for the hero, an original and exciting take on the Angel of Death."
-Maureen McGowan, author of the Twisted Tales series.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR.
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author DARYNDA JONES won a Golden Heart for Best Paranormal Romance for her ma.n.u.script First Grave on the Right. A born storyteller, she grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, annoying man and beast alike. Darynda lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys. Visit Darynda at www.daryndajones.com.
This is a work of fiction. All of the characters, organizations, and events portrayed in this novel are either products of the author's imagination or are used fict.i.tiously.
DEATH, DOOM, AND DETENTION. Copyright 2013 by Darynda Jones. All rights reserved. For information, address St. Martin's Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10010.
Cover design by Olga Grlic.
Cover photographs: girl by Jupiterimages/Getty Images; black-haired male by Image Source/Getty Images; teenagers in cla.s.sroom by Rod Morata/Getty Images ISBN 978-0-312-62521-4 (trade paperback).
ISBN 9781250025906 (e-book).