Raids And PlansMature

Of course she'd thought it was something exciting. Well, she'd hoped it, though she'd never been sure it wasn't just wishful thinking. When she met Geoff he told her that they never stole anything, and that was mostly true. Occasionally there were things they had to have that they'd never have been able to get hold of, but mostly they were legit when it came to stealing.

Elena's favourite raid had by far been the time when they'd played a prank on one of the leaders of their area. Okay, so she'd been completely terrified the whole time, but that didn't mean it wasn't fun. They'd put a hose through his letterbox and when he came out to lecture them they'd asked him if he had seen how dry the world was.

He didn't get it. "It doesn't rain. We live in tunnels."

"You don't know what 'dry' means?" Geoff had asked, safe behind his balaclava.

"I know what it means in our language. I don't know about your thief's dialect. Be off with you!" The others had laughed, and as soon as he had gone they'd called him a moron and wondered how anyone could be so ignorant. Elena thought it best not to tell them she didn't have a clue what was going on. She'd just rather liked the look on the elderly fellow's face when he saw the hose.

And then there was that time with the post. They'd broken into a post box and readdressed all of the letters so that they went to the wrong people. Well, not all of them. Notably, those concerning politics - sent them to the opposite party, to people who could cause trouble, just for the fun of it. In the end they got in huge trouble, but Mathew, Geoff and Elena were safe by then, far away.

She'd always thought it was just for fun and hoped that there was something more to it. Still, what excuse did boys need to play pranks on people? None. And that was why she wasn't too hopeful that it was something more.

I just get into scrapes, Mathew had once told her, warning her against the questions she asked. It didn't look like that was true any more. If they got into trouble, it wouldn't just be inquisitive Elena that got dragged off for questioning.

Now that she knew she was part of the resistance, however, Elena saw it all in a completely different light. Knew why they hadn't told her in the first place: because they didn't trust me. A little girl-child, they thought I'd tattle to Mama. They must have known I don't trust her any more than I trust the rest of the world. They thought I'd tell on them.

And then another thought occurred to her. Maybe it wasn't that. Maybe they were worried about us getting caught. If I didn't know who they really were, even under torture I couldn't admit anything. I'd be safe - and so would they, so long as they could keep their mouths shut.

It didn't reassure her. Long after Geoff had left her again, Elena sat staring at her hands, and tried to work out when everything had gone so wrong. Her best friends were members of the resistance. Her family thought she'd gone mad. She hadn't spoken to anyone for three months, and she'd lost a stone in weight from hardly eating.

Once I find the answers, everything will be all right again, she thought bravely to herself. If I find out where the music has gone it'll be all right. Wherever it is, I'll be safe there. People who have music would look after me, I know they would ...

The End

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