Stella rushed into the hospital. ‘Shit, shit, shit! I can’t believe I nearly forgot!’ she thought. A nurse stopped her. ‘Where are you going?’
‘I’m going to see my mum.’ Stella tried not to shout.
‘I’m sorry dear, but it’s past visiting hours.’
‘No! I’ve got to see her. I promised.’ Her eyes were starting to water.
‘I’m sorry dear,’ the nurse repeated. ‘Can you please exit the building. Come back tomorrow.’
Stella’s eyes started to sting. She ran out the hospital. She sat on the nearest bench and with her head in her hands cried her heart out. ‘Great!’ she thought. ‘I promised her I’d be there. What if she woke up and I wasn’t there. There just isn’t enough time. I will see her next week.’ She sat up properly and wiped her eyes. This was the second time she’d cried in a day.
She appeared in the school grounds. She walked slowly towards the castle. She wanted more time. Time to do everything. Whilst climbing the steps, she tripped. She didn’t bother getting up again. Stella didn’t go inside at all that night. She just sat on a step outside, wide-awake.
When the sun began to rise, Stella got up. ‘Time to go,’ she thought. She paused. ‘No, I’m going to go for a walk first.’ And so she set off. She had no idea where she was going or for how long. Something just wanted her to go and wander. She would go wherever her feet would take her but she wouldn’t go into the forest, even if she wanted to. There were many things in there, good and bad. The faeries and wildlife could sometimes be seen from the castle. A pixie had once got into the school. This was in Stella’s third year. This was probably the most exciting thing. She remembered sending a letter to her mum.
A pixie got into the school today! You would not believe how naughty they are. She was naughtier than me and that’s saying something. The Halloween party was very funny and was great fun. Tell Laurie he’s not missing out on much really. The party was alright I guess. We had fun at any rate. I hope you’re not feeding Tabby too much. She’s already fat as it is and tell Dad that as well. Knowing him, he’s probably given her more food than I’ve had here. Xia says she ant wait to meet you all in the holidays. Her family are staying near us so I can see her over the holidays. That will be great fun. Xia has an older sister a year younger than Laurie. We could do some matchmaking! That’ll be our thing. Don’t tell Laurie. I want to have some fun with him before he moves out.
I love you
Stella laughed to herself. She was so young and had a better sense of humour. The edge of the forest that surrounded Gwydion was bright, yet towards the middle Stella could see darkness. This is what she felt. On the outside, she seemed bright and cheerful, but on the inside darkness lived within her.
* * *
Several weeks passed. Every night Stella and Lars had meetings. They just sat and talked about random things. School, friends, and homework among many things. Stella enjoyed these conversations. They were the only thing that kept her sane and out of trouble. These conversations also helped her to understand that losing her father wasn’t that bad compared to Lars’ losses. He had lost his whole family apart from Jemony. She started to think herself lucky and even though she had little time, she could use it wisely and do the things that she’s always wanted to do. Lars gave her faith to believe.
Stella walked down the front steps to the front of school. Lars was always there before her but this time he wasn’t there. She was puzzled. He had never missed a conversation. Stella felt that she knew him better than she knew herself. As she sat down she sighed. ‘I’ll wait 5 minutes,’ she thought. ‘If he’s not here by then, I’ll start to worry.’
* * *
Five minutes came and went. She got up and walked towards the castle. This was so unlike Lars. Something was wrong, and Stella knew it. She walked back to her dorm. This wasn’t the time for him to be missing. She had decided to tell him about her mother. She felt as if he had told her all about him, yet she was hiding things from him. Things he needed to know. If she just ran off, like she did on the first night they had talked, he would need to know. Otherwise he would get worried.
When she got to the courtyard that was in the middle of the dorms, she stopped. Now would be a perfect time to go and visit her mother. She didn’t have to meet with Lars and she had no homework to be getting on with. Quickly she looked around and then disappeared in her orange smoke.
At the same time Lars was in his separate room from the rest of his dorm mates. He decided it was time to go. He then disappeared in his teal smoke. He stood infront of the hospital doors.