I'd slept out again last night. All my friends were busy, so I had ended up just wondering the streets - anything was better than going back home. Luckily it was a warm night, and in the end I had found a house party which I had casually sneaked in.
Ever since my mother had died, last year, I had started to do this a lot. We had been in a car crash, and while I had survived it with only a broken arm, she had died instantly. I had never known my dad, so I was left in the care of my step-father, who hadn't taken her death well. He had turned into an empty shell, refusing to move on.
At ten o'clock in the morning, I made the journey back home. When I let myself in, I heard the snores of Frank coming from the living room and the smell of alcohol lingered in the air. I felt like walking in there and shaking him, telling him to wake up and move on. Yes it was hard, I had loved her too but his depression was suffocating me.
Leave it, I thought, two more years and your out of here.
I'd been saving up my wages from my part time job - and stealing Franks spare cash on the odd occasion - to pay for the accommodation for when I applied for a university. I was going to get a loan, and a grant and I would be out of here. As far away as I possibly could.
I looked down, and noticed the post had come. Bills, junk, bills, a letter for me, bills. Wait, a letter for me? No one ever wrote to me. I opened it quickly and inside there was a letter and a small package.
I traced my finger over the smooth parchment, curiously but decided to open the package first. It was heavy to hold, and the brown wrapping was rough in my palm. Unwrapping it, a magnificent medallion was revealed. It was a smooth silver, with beautiful carvings of strange creatures and plants around the edges. In the middle lay an oval gem, the colour of fresh grass and it seemed to shine under the light. I managed to drag my eyes from it to unfolded the letter and read it.
Dear Henry Jordan
I am very pleased to inform you that you have been accepted into the Pappilon Academy for the magically gifted. Please accept the small gesture in the package.
Pappillon is one of the worlds leading schools for the gifted and you will be picked up by your guardian the night you receive this letter at midnight. Please be ready by packing a medium sized bag with your possesions.
Regards from the teachers at Pappilon
I scanned the letter again to make sense of it. Was this a joke? What was Pappillon? I flew upstairs to try and google it, but nothing came up. This was clearly a joke, of Franks. But for some reason, I still packed my bags and waited in my room till midnight.
At around two o'clock, I heard Frank get up and walk upstairs. He came in my room, grunted at me, and walked back out. So much for intelligent conversations.
The hours seemed to crawl by, but soon when I looked at my digital clock it read 11:55.
Five minutes. I still didn't expect anything to happen, but secretly I was hoping.
Three minutes. I was starting to get tired. Two minutes. Actually, I was a bit hungry too, maybe I'd go downstairs for a night time snack. One minute. I wonder where Frank was.
"Hi Henry, I'm Delilah. I'll be your guardian at Pappilon."