Chapter XXII: Ostara Investigations (7/11)Mature

From the railing of the glass roof, Will could see the Ostara celebrations, lit by the glow of hanging paper lanterns around the site. It was no surprise that the boys attempted to look through any facing window and balcony to see them, but Will was alone on the roof, his legs slotted through the balustrade and feeling the wind steadily lapping against him. 

Tayna, Sayara and the Twins were visible from above, sitting at an individual table with Hellshaw and Principal Paradam whilst others sat cross-legged on the floor and on sturdy wooden benches. Around them, sirens and nymphs danced together in dresses of silk and chiffon which flared out as they danced and twirled. The main dancer wore a white dress, a headdress with crystals falling around her angelic features like summer rain. The others wore ebony black with lace veils obscuring their faces - they represented the spirits of the underworld as they began an interpretative dance. 

It told the story of Persephone, how she was abducted and married to Hades, god of the Underworld. The girls in black moved ethereally, swarming around the girl in white whilst she writhed to the music. The dance concluded when Persephone's mother, the goddess Demeter was reunited for six months of the year, the seasons of Spring and Summer.

Afterwards, anybody was able to dance, and Will watched happily as Tayna and Sayara joked around, waltzing exaggeratedly. They wore ceremonial chitons, Sayara's was lime dress and Tayna's was sunny yellow. Daisies had been woven into their hair.

Sayara turned around and looked up - she must have sensed his presence because she smiled and waved in his direction. He waved back and watched her as she returned to dancing, he couldn't ignore the connection he felt to her, or believe it was no more than the Elemental bond. The day at the Lake had changed everything, he'd revived her and had no idea how, but since then he felt unable to avoid her -

'You like her,'  a teasing voice said behind him. Will jumped and turned around, Andrel had appeared next to him, looking at him waggishly. He hadn't noticed he was there, or even heard him coming.

'Shut up,' Will murmured, pressing his head against the bars.

'You should go for it, she's cute, you're...anyway, there's nothing to lose.' Will's face reddened, he stood and eased himself through the glass pane onto the Attic, but Andrel followed behind.

'Relationship advice...from you?' Will remarked. 'Haven't you been trying to ask that pixie on a date for over a month?'

Andrel smiled, almost schemingly, 'ah yes, Fatalia Sharpe,' he clasped his fingers together like an evil mastermind. 'Soon she shall be mine and we will be unstoppable.' He was about to begin a maniacal chuckle when he stopped, clasped his head and began to gasp out in pain.

'What's wrong? Is your plan too wicked to handle?' Will joked.

'Ha ha,' he said tonelessly, bringing his hand away cautiously as they descended the spiral stairs, 'but no. It's Arlamus, I can't get him out of my head.'

Will stopped at the turning of the second floor and cocked an eyebrow at his friend. 'You say that as if you're in love with him? I don't think that's legal -,'

'Not like that,' Andrel retorted. 'As in, I literally can't get his voice out of my head. I don't care what people say, telepathy sucks -,'

'Whoa,' Will exclaimed, 'telepathy? Since when?'

'We've had it all our lives, Will, didn't I tell you?' Will shook his head and Andrel shrugged, continuing to walk. 'Well, I do. You know it's a side effect of being a twin, don't you? The Twins are proved to have it, and I'm pretty sure Carmen and Karn'el did, either that or they're very good at reading each other. Anyway, did you know that Arlamus and I aren't really talking right now?'

'It's pretty obvious, I won't lie,'

'Oh, right,' said Andrel, looking reserved, 'well, I think that there are things that Arlamus wants to say, but doesn't. He's pretty clueless about how to switch off his telepathy, so whenever he thinks about me I hear him and my brain starts going numb.' They reached the bottom and headed through into the deserted commonroom. 'Plus, I hear a lot of other things, I bet I can sub-consciously germinate rhododendrons now...'

The End

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