The Fake Heart

By: Allice Revelle

Book One in the Time Alchemist Series


To Mom.

LUMI, always.


I was just a normal sixteen year old girl.

My life in Savannah was supposed to be perfectly, absolutely normal. Totally, one hundred percent normal. I was going to kick my old A- average where it hurt and become top of my new class; I was going to giggle and gossip with my new girl friends over everything—from the cutest dresses made from local designers (and only the best money would buy) and rating gorgeous, just-walked-right-out-of-a-fashion-magazine, Grade A guys; and last, but certainly not least…my path to the future.

First step: St. Mary’s Academy. And then, I would have the best of the best colleges from across the county at the tips of my fingers.

I was just normal, boring, stick-by-the-rules Emery Miller. And I had plans.

But those plans…well, they didn’t include me on becoming an alchemist.

But Fate always had a funny way of showing me up, didn’t it?


Every morning starts off the same. Today was no exception, even if it was the start of my brand new life, miles and miles away from home.

I hummed to one of my favorite Adele songs playing softly from scratchy, silver-and-blue stereo on the small wooden dresser drawers as I shuffled around my single dorm room in tempo. The dark cream colored plush carpet tickled the bottoms of my feet. I stopped for the hundredth time this morning in front of the full length mirror hanging on the closet door. Despite the smeared and scratched up surface, I could still see myself just fine in the reflection—a nervous smile spread on my pink cheeks (courtesy of some light blush), and green eyes almost hidden under thick, wavy auburn colored bangs.

Brushing away the obnoxious hair did little to help. People often assumed that just because I hid my eyes from the world meant I was shy and vulnerable and insecure. Well, they were wrong. Dead wrong. Despite how annoying the bangs tended to block my eyesight, that’s just how I liked my hair. It was me—Emery. A little unique, just like my name.

Besides, nothing a few cute glittering purple flower barrettes (a parting gift from my best friend Rachel back in my hometown near Albany—the capitol of New York, for those who…didn’t know. It honestly surprised me thought I lived in NYC; I’ve only been there, like, once in my whole life, and that was during a middle school field trip) couldn’t fix as I snapped them neatly in place, making sure not a stray hair was sticking out of place. Hair and Make-Up: Check.

The scarlet colored jacket felt awkwardly stiff and a size too big on my body, and the black pleated skirt felt like it was made of a very rough material as it scratched against my legs. But I’d taken any slight discomfort (heck, I’d walk around the entire school with rocks and needles in my shoes!) to wear the emblem of St. Mary’s Academy—a golden insignia of a small, beautiful magnolia flower stitched perfectly over the left breast pocket.

Wearing this uniform meant you were part of the privileged. The fortunate. The elite.

And I, Emery Miller, was an official St. Mary’s sophomore student!

Okay, well, I wasn’t exactly considered “elite” in such a glamorous, posh school, considering 95% of the student body was insanely rich (mostly from old money) and gorgeous, being one of the few scholarship students auspicious enough to even breathe on St. Mary’s finely trimmed Southern grounds.

I tugged the edge of my skirt one last time, forcing a bright and cheery smile on my face as I posed. The black buttons of the jacket gleamed like prized gems against the morning light illuminating from the window that portrayed a small glimpse of the school grounds—the back of the girl’s dormitory, Moore Hall, which led to a collection of trees that swayed in a gentle sunup breeze.

With one last double take—dress shirt neatly tucked in, jacket wrinkle free, buttons in place, skirt the right length (required by St. Mary’s rules) and the black tie snug nice and tight under the crisp white shirt. Uniform: Check

I glanced over at the framed picture on top the oak nightstand table—the artificial light from the bedside lamp cast an unfriendly glare over the picture of me, a then five year old graduating from kindergarten, hair sticking out from underneath the little square-tussled hat decorated in Hello Kitty stickers and glitter, my mouth wide open, showing my missing front three teeth (yes, three) from an unfortunate accident on the swing sets; my proud father wrapping his big arms around my tiny body, our cheeks pressed together like putty. His smile was so wide it looked like his reddened face was split in half. There were even tears in his eyes.

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