I glanced at the clock nervously, watching the second hand slowly flick around the centre of the face. The bus would be arriving any minute and I didn’t have any intention of standing around a freezing cold bus stop. On top of the biting Northern wind, the path down to the bus shelter was icy and no one had stopped by to throw grit onto it yet.
My father decided to relocate his business and now my family and I had moved to the chilly country town of Burskworth. The house was great, the town was great, and I’m sure the school was going to be great, too. But it didn’t stop me from feeling terrible about moving away from all the friends I had accumulated over the years back ‘home’.
I heard the whoosh of tires, and the screech of old brakes soon followed. I peered out of the window and saw my fellow students filing onto the double-decker which would be my method of transport for the next year while I attended Burskworth High’s sixth form.
“Bye, Mum!” I yelled, swinging my bag onto my shoulder as I left the house. I heard her faint reply of “Bye, love!” from upstairs and I slammed the door shut behind me.
As I thought it would be, the long and winding path down the hill my house was sat on top of was slippery and I thanked every God out there that my boots had half-decent grip on them. I flung my arms out to the side in the vain hope it would help me balance atop the pavement, which was slicked thoroughly with solid ice.
Why. I groaned in my head, Just... Why. I hate winter. I really, really hate winter!
After spending five minutes making my way down the precarious slope, I finally reached the bus and all but threw myself through the doors. The driver gave me an odd look but waited patiently for me as I fumbled around in my coat pocket for my bus pass. He eyed it up for a moment, before nodding.
I headed down the bus’ isle, my eyes sliding over all of the faces which openly stared at me in interest. I guessed that there wouldn’t have been many new families in such a small town. I took my seat one from the back of the bus, throwing my bag down on the half which was closest to the window.
Huffing out a sigh of relief, I reached into my pocket to pull out my phone.
Six new messages.
I flicked through the texts I’d received. They were from my friends, wishing my good luck at my new school. All of them said the same thing, although each was phrased in a way which reminded me of each individual. I felt a pang of sadness in my chest, smiling at the screen.
The bus lurched into motion and I had to grip onto the side of my seat to ensure the jolt didn’t throw me forward at the person in front. I heard someone snicker in amusement behind me, but I managed to prevent myself from turning around with an indignant expression and saying something stupid.
I resisted the urge to squeeze my eyes tight shut and pretend I didn’t exist as the bus took the long and winding journey through the housing estates to where I’d be spending the next year of my life.