pregnant?” Devon smiled at his bad joke. “ I finished my Night Prowler.” “ Your what?” “ It’s an all-terrain go-kart I’ve been working on for a couple of years. I built it from scratch. You can race it on mountains. I’m hoping to take it somewhere for a good test drive this summer.” “ Oh, that’s neat.” Devon was already looking over his shoulder for Adam. Evan was very familiar with reading signs of disinterest. “ Well, see you,” he said. “ Huh?” “ Good luck finding your friend.”
Adam wandered through the crowd with a fresh twenty-dollar bill crumpled in his fist. He wasn’t really interested in the ferris wheel or trying to win any prizes. Ferris wheels were only fun to ride with a girl and the prizes were all useless crap. In this crowd he knew no one and nobody knew him. He examined the occasional face, looking for someone he might recognize. Peter Hadley’s was the first face his eyes fell on that seemed as disinterested in the fair as he was. The weedy teenager was propped against the striped side of a food concession hut, flipping through a menu on a cell phone and looking lost. He looked up and his gaze caught Adam’s. He did an awful lot of staring, but Peter found that he didn’t really like it when the eyes were on him. “ Can I help you?” he asked, shoving his phone in his pocket. “ Sorry,” Adam said. “You were just interesting.” Peter laughed bitterly. “Am I?” “ You’re the only person here who doesn’t seem like he wants to be here.” “ I was hoping to run into someone.” “ A girl?” Peter squinted. “A friend,” he said, ignoring the fact that Penelope Davis was a girl and that Adam was spot on in pinpointing Peter’s hopes. “Who are you?” “ Adam,” he said. “I moved in next to Devon Valentine. Do you know her?” “ Peter,” Peter introduced himself. “And yeah, I know Devon. Everyone does.” “ Her family is nice,” Adam said, omitting any mention of the current drama. “ There you are,” said Devon as she found Adam through the crowd. She stopped next to him and nodded to Peter. “I guess you two have met.” “ Is he a friend of yours?” Adam asked. “ We were kind of kidnapped together this winter,” Peter supplied. “ Come again?” “ Some delusional psychopaths. It was in all of the papers. There were a bunch of us.” Adam’s blue eyes were wide and wondering. The pair seemed incredibly casual about being the victims of such a potentially scarring crime. “ Mom texted. She wants me home so she can be sure I’m not with Frank.” “ It was nice to meet you, Peter,” Adam said. “ Yeah,” Peter replied. Peter turned his back and slipped into the crowd, ready to go home.
Summer vacation was no excuse for June Herald to slack off. Keeping busy was the easiest way to keep her mind off of her ex, Zach. It wasn't easy to forget him when they met once a week for The Pantheon. She had to look at his stupid face every Sunday afternoon. She had gotten the idea for the fundraiser from a news article back in March. June had formed a group (she had borrowed members from student council and Valerie Hess' virgin club) dedicated to buying Kindles for the special needs students in the Miami school system. June had set up a booth just outside of the south gate to the fairgrounds. She had built elaborate displays out of foam core and plastered them with colorful stock images of multiracial children reading. Two younger girls flanked the booth and handed neon fliers to people who passed by. June stood close to the table, ready to pitch her plan to anyone who approached. The fair had been mildly successful, so far. June had spoken with a mother of a visually impaired child, who invited her to come speak at her church. A few teachers from the district had signed up for her email list, too. It was some time after nine when the trouble started. June was showing her Kindle to a curious