The artwork for this series is much different then others. Many pages aren’t the standard of showing only each frame, they have illustrations on the page as a whole with random positions of frames throughout. There is much contrast in the colors which are very bold. The colors are either extremely bright or black and there are, what seems to look like water color droplets covering each page but the colors of them correspond to the colors behind them.
The first few pages illustrate an unknown and unexplained scene, probably to be revealed later in the series. Each frame shows a woods setting with a tree off to the side containing a prominent hole. Suddenly one of the repeated frames changes and shows an eye coming from the hole. The person inside puts her mouth to the hole to call for help. She continues screaming and trying to escape when a young boy named Timonthy calls after his mom. He asks why she is in there but she ignores the question and tells him to use a rock on the ground to bust her out. Tim picks up the rock and repeats his question to which she actually answers. She informs him that she has been ‘pledged’. His reaction is shocking as he continues to beat his mother with the rock and says ‘pledged is pledged’. At the end we see this event happened in the past, 1919 to be exact.
The next page resembles another title page signifying the start of the present day events. We don’t see the characters quite yet but do see their dialog. It seems to be a conversation between a dad and a daughter. The dad starts off by saying he sees a flock of Hippogriffs to which she asks what they are. He is jokingly agrivated that she does not remember and explains that they are like a Griffin but with a back half of a horse and a front half of a vulture. We then see the characters conversing outside as the dad continues to talk about the fantasy animals, engaging his daughter. We find out the daughters name is Sail and it becomes obvious that his imaginary conversation was made to cheer her up and calm her nerves about the first day at a new school. After they had their fun, she mentions that she is still nervous about if they know about her, suggesting a dark past that the reader is made with unaware of. He assures her that he will be thee to pick her up if her anxiety spikes and that he too hopes the kids don’t know about her past.
Sail gets on the bus as the father carries a very worried look on his face. He turns around to walk back into their house which is in a heavily wooded area with a dirt path leading to the entrance. His wife asks how things went at the bus stop. He mentions that she was still very nervous and asks if she thinks the other kids would know about their daughter. We now see that she is in a wheelchair sitting on the porch. ‘Probably’ she replies. We then see Sail on the bus where we see the other kids whisper about her. She tries to distract herself by thinking about the light hearted conversation with her dad but there seems to be a couple frames showing instances of either flashbacks or general thoughts of a man in the woods repeating the question ‘Pledge?’
The next page switches settings and we see what seems to be a part of a children’s story that the father is writing. All we are shown are some small illustrations as he is on the phone with a publisher. He explains that his new story, Hall of Mirrors, will be so much better than his initial idea of the story centering around a roller coaster. We are told that he has a bestselling graphic series about the world of a funhouse. the man on the other end continues to change the subject and asks about his daughter, Sail, and his wife, Lucy. He exclaims that Lucy feels at home in their new house and starts working at the hospital soon but that Sail is having a hard time. He hangs up because Lucy points out that a deer had entered their house.
The scene changed suddenly to the science class of Sail. The teacher explains how to make gunpowder and how, if one ingredient changes, fireworks can be made. He set off the explosion and as the students clapped, the girl sitting next to Sail started conversation with her about how creepy the teacher actually was. She gives her a smile and starts to introduce herself when the girl cures her off to tell her that she already knows all about her. Before saying anything else, she asks ‘So did you kill that girl or not?’
Quickly there is a smooth transition to a flashback. We see a girl that we have not been introduced to yet asking Sail,very angrily, if she will apologize. Sail is confused and asks what she should be sorry for. She suggests that Sail had posted something online and bullied her. Sail responded and we learn that her name is Annie. She explains that Annie had made her life hell for a year and she didn’t understand why. Annie grows angrier and angrier and says she just naturally hates her so much. Sail mentally snaps and screams back at Annie as she pulls out a knife.