It all began in a day in May. I was walking through the woods, soaking up the weak sunshine and deciding whether to go home and face the usual chaos. I sighed. I hated my home life. It was all about what everyone else wanted. My dad, out of here as fast as the divorce papers could carry him. My mother, too much wine and to stop the pain getting to her. My sister.. who knows? Helena lives in her bedroom, with strains of music coming out every so often to show us she's alive.  Who cares about what I want? It's not like I live there too! This house is not a home, it's a warzone. Seeing as Father can't leave until the end of the month, he sulks and rages. From then on, its screaming and alcohol for both parties until one caves in, usually my mother, and apologizes.

I had to escape. I just had to. I took off as quickly as I could. I knew I'd have to go back, once it rained, or someone noticed I wasn't home. But until then, I was free.  Just a boy. It's sad really, to everyone else, I'm the golden child. I get the best grades, because I have to distract myself somehow, and heavy, consuming revision is the best method. I have friends, and girls tend to go all twittery and lose their heads around me.  But my family.. who knows. God help the outcasts.

 It was cold, that day, and it had been threatening to rain for weeks, with no luck. I loved to sit under a tree and watch the sheets of water drip off the leaves, and stain the earth a deep chocolate. It helped me think.  Since the weather was not going to please me, I decided to just walk, whevever the land took me.

I had no idea how long I was out there, before I saw it. A flash of red, vivid and momentary.  Supposing I'd startled a fox, I backed up a little, and sat to watch it, waiting for it to regain its composure and come out.  I sat down, and looked around, mentally marking the spot for future reference. My stomach dropped. I remembered nothing, recognised nothing of the woods sprawling in all directions. Worse still, it was deadly silent. No birds, no wind. Nothing. 

 I rubbed my eyes, hoping wildly a memory would come of where I was, how I'd got there.  I had been so busy walking along, taking in the view, that I had let my mind wander, leaving me lost, with no hope of getting anywhere soon.  I pushed the rising fear away, keeping my calm. I stood, scanning the horizon for references. The sun was setting to the west, a golden coin bleeding orange into the sky.  Birds soared in the sky, black smudges like children's scribbles. The forest lay in all directions, in all the shades of green.  It felt to me like the forest was holding its breath, waiting for someone to discover its hiding place.

I slumped down, and tried to rationalize. My heart sank as I realised that no-one would remember I'd gone out. Helena was, as usual, in her room, and Dad had stormed out once again. Mum was asleep in her room, a shot glass in her palm.  Who would miss me?  I strained to rememeber if I'd left a note, texted someone. Given myself SOME hope.. But my mind was emptying, wiping itself blank. The more I dwelled on it, the faster it cleared, like a retreating wave. What was going on?!




The End

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