The Shock Sets In.
It all started on a Wednesday. Wednesday the 12th of April at 2:34PM. That was the moment that changed my life.
The clock struck 2:29 and I was shuffling through the empty hallways as my fingers nervously plucked at the skin on my upper arm. English class was next and the ill possibility of receiving an A on the recent test loomed in the back of my mind. I shook my head as if it would knock the thought away and made my way towards the classroom. I paused at the doorway, staring into the room. There was only one other person there and I was hit with a twinge of guilt every time I saw her. Mila was the infamous outcast of my year and she might have been spared that fate if I didn’t blend into the woodwork so well. Like her, I always carried a book and had a grade average higher than a B. And unlike her, I was a raging clutz with the luck of a reverse leprechaun. So why was she the one they ridiculed?
I snapped out of my pitying daze and started weaving my way towards my seat. Making my way past Mila’s desk, my foot caught on the leg and I toppled over. My arms shot out in front of me and my head winced, preparing for the impact of the floor. But there wasn’t one. For a second, I froze in my position, thinking the pain was about to kick in. I figured I must have broken something and be numb from shock. But then I realised, I wasn’t numb at all. A soft breeze blew past my cheeks and the cold tickle widened my eyes. My whole body jolted noticing several inches between my face and the carpet. I gulped in a breath of air and crashed to the ground in an instant.
A paralysing stun took over my body and left me face down in the middle of the classroom. But it was sucked out of me the moment the bell echoed through my ears.
It was 2:35. The lesson had begun.
Overloaded with panic, I stumbled to my feet and scurried to my seat at the back by the window. Like clockwork, the students flooded in and Miss Wrencham marched to the chalkboard to scribble down the instructions for today's lesson. My eyes drifted over my shoulder, turning her words to a blur and fell on the verdant giant that towered over the school. I followed the falling leaves with my gaze as an uncountable amount of thoughts began attacking my mind at once.
Interrupting my trance, a paper flew at my chest and I snapped my head forward to peer down at the essay I handed in last week. The words on the page melded into each other and before I got lost in the blending white and black, I swiped my hand across the desk to send it floating out of sight. There was no room in my head to think about my grade.
A haze followed me around the entire day as I relentlessly debated out illogical theories.
You were simply sucked into a worm hole and spat out again, delaying your perception of time.
Maybe you defied the laws of gravity because gravity doesn't exist. Yep, that's plausible.
A hidden camera show, that's it!
Ghost's can distort reality right?
...A bee sting?
My mind drained of sensation, my body turned stiff and I halted dead in the middle of the hallway. Crowds of faceless people pushed past me to get home as it finally began to dawn on me. If I wasn't losing my mind, then the impossible had happened. And all I could hear echoing through my mind were the words: which is more realistic? The realisation hit me like a bulldozer. It sucked the air from my lungs and encouraged the palpitations to thump harsher against my chest. I had convinced myself of what anyone else would in my position; I convinced myself I was crazy.
Emptiness surrounded me. Lights flickered off, one by one; sending a flash of darkness to travel across the stretching hallway, towards the distant doors looming at the entrance. That was when the sensation began to nip at the tips of my fingers; feeling spreading over my arms and returning movement to my body. Not only was I forced away from my catatonic state, but I was thrown straight into a panicked one. It was 5:45 and I only had 15 minutes. 15 minutes until my front door was locked and I would be stuck on the streets for the night - that's the rule at Chez Westwood.
Breaking out in a desperate dash home, my legs tore with each overzealous leap, and another thought crept its way into my head. Would they even notice if I never came home? A gust of icy wind hit the tears emerging on my cheeks and stung my skin with a rage. Every emotion inside of me was screaming to come out at once. But I couldn't allow a single one. Shaking off the pain, I propelled myself into an even swifter sprint that ripped into my calves.
Just as the door slammed behind me, the hand met the six, triggering the cuckoo clock to spring into action. To avoid a run in with the stoic stare my mother always carried with her, I promptly sped upstairs on my tiptoes. Once I collapsed onto my bed with exhaustion, I began to plan my night in a hopeful state of mind. I wasn’t in the mood to cross paths with my parents, so I settled on the junk food I kept under my bed. But the chocolate melting in my mouth felt sour and I had little motivation to bite down on the popcorn. I tried to bring my focus to tv, but I had no interest in any of my favourite shows. With every attempt at relaxation being thwarted, I surrendered to the sandman and crawled under the covers. My back sunk into the sheets and my body fell into a paralyzed posture. Every part of me released itself to a deep slumber. Every part but my eyes, which were still glued to the lightly glowing ceiling.
By the time it got to 4 am, the glow in the dark stars spun in my head as clear as an actual constellation. Reality began to fade and I drifted into peace and replenishment. But it only lasted a moment. My eyes shot open and staring down at my bed, I immediately hurtled into the pulpous bedding. Wiping my hair from my eyes, my head shifted to the side as I sighed into the duvet.
At least I know it's real now.
You Can Be Strange with a Stranger
Glancing down at my watch through the sleep in my eye, I noticed the time and flung myself from my sheets. Grabbing the first clothes I found at my feet, I rushed out the door.
By the time I got to school I was an hour late. I fell through the doors looking like a disco diva in my blinding blue shirt, and flared lemon pants with sequins running down the sides. I was on the floor with a near asthma attack when Vice principal Herman strutted up to me. My hand grabbed at my chest as it clenched even tighter and he glared down at me with condescension in his eyes. He groaned with exasperation while he waited for my breath to quieten so he could speak. “Get off the floor student, you know the drill.” With a tut and no offer of help, he disappeared down the hall and left me to my walk of shame.
With a nervous skip in my goody-two-shoes, I made my way towards one of my biggest fears. I kept my head pinned to the ground the whole way, until I met the disgusted glare Ronda the receptionist threw at every student she laid eyes on. Her judgment pierced into me, turning the butterflies infesting my stomach into a nest of hornets. As I began to approach the door to principal Molden's cramped waiting area, my stomach growled in protest and I slowed my steps, stopping inches from the handle. I took a deep breath and swung the door open with forced confidence. Which immediately drained as I made eye contact with an incredibly attractive guy, giving me a confused look. With my arm still out in front of me, I froze like an imbecile as he relaxed into his seat and crossed his arms with a cheeky smirk spread over his cheeks. "Did I startle you?" He remarked as amusement took over his face.
He was made up of a threefold perfection that took me a moment to absorb. His ruffled hair was a black darker than coal and his crystal eyes reflected the world around him. Along with his intoxicating smile that radiated a sense of enthralling tenderness, he was almost mesmerising enough to distract me. Almost.
"Oh, I uh...Didn't know anyone else was in here" I mumbled with a jaw frozen shut.
"Well" He chuckled, tousling his hair. "The shock must have set in by now, you gonna sit?"
I shuffled towards the chair next to him. "I haven't seen you around before." I said in an attempt to break the tension.
Leant back in his chair, his head turned to face me and my shoulders squirmed at the little distance between us. "I've only been going here an hour."
I shrugged awkwardly and glared at the wall opposite with an intense concentration. I could feel his eyes travel over me, studying with curiosity, while I regret not taking a minute to pick a less disastrous outfit. With my fingers and toes tapping away, the tension became too much to handle. "So... Necrophilia, pretty weird stuff huh?" I blurted out in panic. My enthusiasm left the second the words left my lips and my head fell straight into my hands.
Next time, just learn to live with a little tension.
And you seriously need to stop it with those weird documentaries!
A cool grip gently wrapped around my wrist and began to pry my hand from my face. "Necrophilia isn't such a dull topic, ya know" He shot me a sympathetic look and added a boyish smirk that injected me with euphoria. The corner of my mouth lifted into a half smile as I looked back at him, chewing on my lower lip.
Murdering the moment in cold blood, the principal strode out from his office and spat out my name impatiently. But instead of putting my tail between my legs and cowering into his office, I gave Mr Perfect a beaming grin and swiftly strolled in with my head held high. Without any eye contact, I glided past principal Malden and perched on the edge of the chair opposite his. His eyebrows raised and hands clasped together on the desk as he glared at me with entitled intimidation in his eyes. But after examining my face, he could see I was different that day. There was something in me that you usually couldn't detect with a microscope. There was confidence.
I managed to stroll out with a warning. I started making my way down the hall with a mini victory hop, when Mr Perfect caught up to me. "Hey, I didn't catch your name."
"Lila" I chirped, spinning around to face him. My eyebrows furrowed as I stared at him. "Do I get yours, or do I just have to keep calling you Mr Perfect in my head?" I queried sarcastically with instant regret.
Please have hearing aids that happened to randomly malfunction.
"Mr perfect, huh? It's catchy. I think I'll just stick with that." He said, throwing me a playful wink along with his signature smirk.
“No hearing aids then?” I questioned in an awkward high pitched tone as he began to walk away. He paused and turned halfway around to look back at me. "Lila suits you. Beautiful name for a quirky girl." He added with a raised eyebrow, before turning to walk away again.
Once his back was facing me, my smile widened across my cheeks and a giddy chuckle carried me to my lesson. The excitement slowly fizzled into a warm buzz that stayed with me throughout the day. I was even smiling during gym, which was so out of character it got me a trip to the nurse’s office.
Preoccupied in my state of mind, I pranced over to my locker to grab my Biology textbook and carelessly threw it under my arm. For a moment I was clueless to the fact that it had made its own way into my grasp. I swung my hand at my locker to shut it and my face dropped as the last few seconds replayed in my head. Looking down at the book, I abruptly dropped it to the floor with shock. I swivelled around and began to speed in the opposite direction with my soul focus on forward. That was until I spotted Mr Perfect in my periphery. Casually leaning against the lockers, his eyes bore into me with an inquisitive stare. I came to a gradual halt and snapped my head towards him with a shared curiosity. Our eyes locked for an extended moment before I jilted my head forward and continued my swift walk to nowhere.