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Synopsis: When Elliot finds herself dead for the third time, she knows she must have messed up, big-time. She doesn’t remember how she landed in the afterlife again, but she knows this is her last chance to get things right.
Elliot just wants to move on, but first she will be forced to face her past and delve into the painful memories she’d rather keep buried. Memories of people she’s hurt, people she’s betrayed…and people she’s killed.
As she pieces together the secrets and mistakes of her past, Elliot must find a way to earn the forgiveness of the person she’s hurt most, and reveal the truth about herself to the two boys she loves…even if it means losing them both forever.
My body smacked the water. Thoughts scattered like a handful of beads dropped on a bare wood floor. I gasped for air and the current rushed in. My throat burned. Panic, thrashing, spots of light exploding in my head. Surrender. I sank softly down . . . until . . . fingers wrapped around my wrist, yanking me out of the water. As my head broke the surface it all became clear. I had died . . . again.
I stood on the end of the dock that jutted out toward the middle of the lake, fingering the silver eagle feather charm that hung in the hollow below my neck. The chain tangled in the short hairs below my ponytail. I was stunned and spots bounced in front of my eyes. Memories of Mel and my previous visits to the Obmil were rushing at me, but when it came to knowing who I was in my last life, all I could pull from the murky haze was the fact that I was a girl. A girl and a failure.
"Samantha? Is that really you?" Mel inhaled deeply and smiled, confirming that she knew exactly who I was.
It was starting to come back to me now. Everything around me looked the same as it had on my last two visits. I, on the other hand, was guaranteed to appear completely different. But that wasn't unusual or problematic. A soul in the afterlife is recognizable. When you arrive at the Obmil in the last body you inhabited, it really isn't much different than showing up at a family reunion in a different outfit. Everyone has a scent, a personal pheromone that overrides the optical illusion of the body they're wearing. I'm told my soul smells a little like freshly cut wood and dark chocolate.
Mel took another deep breath and smiled at me, her face warm and welcoming. Slowly, the knot of information in my head was unraveling. It was Mel's familiar hand that had pulled me from the water, out of my third life. That made sense. After all, she'd greeted me on my last two arrivals at the Obmil Center for Progression. Crappity, crap, crap-this meant I was here for the third time. I was stuck.
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