please link me to your first 250 words; I like to return the favor. :)
Beth was eleven, but she was not a child. Children avoided all awful things, such as homework, the doctor, and even vegetables. Beth, on the other hand, avoided all things fun.
During recess, children played or talked or read, but Beth would sit under a tree and gaze at the horizon all by herself. When told a joke, a child might laugh or scrunch up their noses in confusion, but Beth showed absolutely no reaction—not one muscle of her face moved.
And, surely, all children loved celebrating their birthdays, they dreamed of presents and cake and blowing out the candles to get their wishes. But birthdays were Beth's night terrors. She knew she would never turn twelve. She knew the witch would come for her.
Even before she had been born, her father had known it too.
Because of this, Mr Wincander had never wanted children of his own. He had never told his wife why, but she had accepted his decision without an issue, and the couple had lived quite happily indeed. But then, five years later, Mrs Wincander found herself pregnant.
To her, it was a happy surprise, but to Mr Wincander, Beth's birth brought him a nightmare that still haunted his sleep. When he tried to explain the source of his dread, his wife gaped right at him and said, “I’m not sure if you are joking or completely mad.”
But Mr Wincander was very serious. His fingers quivered and his lips trembled when he confessed, “The Wincander children are cursed. I was sixteen when the disappearances started. My little sister was the first to be taken, then my cousin … neither one has ever been seen again ...”