Melissa Kincaid

At age 14, Melissa Kincaid has spent years hiding her true self from the world. She feels too much and has difficulty being around crowds of people, because their pain seems to become her own, their sorrow or anger or fear sinks into her body and her consciousness. She has learned to erect  walls around herself for the sake of self-preservation.

Early in her life, she really didn’t understand that she was different. Like most young children, she simply lived. However, as she came to experience more of life, Melissa realized that not everyone absorbs the feelings of others. Not everyone goes on journeys to another realm during sleep. Most of all, of every person she knows, she alone—so far as she can discern—can communicate with the trees. Her reality does not mesh with that of anyone else she has ever met; so she keeps it secret for fear that others will deem her insane.

No one except her beloved trees, the animals, and her spirit guide truly knows who Melissa is. In the forest, she can be herself. She can live the truth and let down her guard.

She lives her life always aware that she is different and alone except for the trees—until the day she meets Arthur Fox—when at last a kinship with another human awakens her to the knowing that her life will never be the same.