My Ranking Points
Okay, I decided just to write my full story so far right now, and I’ve corrected other paragraphs too. So, without further ado, here we go.
The Tale of Rosetta and Miso
By this point I have given up on sleep completely. I dig my head further into the pillow and hope to wake up in my bed at home. Home is a loose term, but I honestly think going back is better than this. Nothing happens. The girl I’m sharing a room with, Mo, grunts and rolls over on her side to face the well-decorated wall. I try to decide why I’m here- why they chose me. Part of me thinks it’s a mistake that they’ve brought me here, that in the morning I’ll be packing my bags and they’ll be pushing me out the door. But I know that wouldn’t happen. In Gavaldon, people knew vaguely of SGE. But, as I’m not Sophie nor Agatha, I can’t go back. It’s all down on paper, my schedule and my door. This isn’t a mistake. As I’m a reader, I don’t have any relatives that are in a fairy tale so it can’t be because of that. And I’m never top of the class, nor liked by classmates- I’m not going anywhere. My life has just changed and I guess there’s nothing I can do about it but accept I’m going to die in a fairy tale one day. My mind keeps flitting between now and Gavaldon, before and after. I can’t work out what is better; inevitably dying in a fairy tale or being tortured each and every day. I force myself out of my thoughts, not needing more pain to add to the fresh scar across my back. For now I should attempt to get some sleep for classes in the morning. But I’ve long since given up hope with that so I climb out of bed and creep across the sticky carpet to the window.
Dew is fresh on the grass so I know it must be near dawn. As a matter of fact, I catch a golden light emerging from the east as I turn away. The room glows and I begin to see the very details; the webs in the corners, chips on the door – things that you normally wouldn’t pay attention to. Mo stretches and I lay back down, pretending to be asleep. I hear her groan and sniff as she sits up and I squint to get a glance of her. Her inky black hair falls in straight sheet down her back and her chestnut eyes look weary and puffy. She yawns and looks at me, revealing pointed, yellow teeth. Slowly, I open my eyes, pretending to wake up and nod at her. She just looks at me like she’s trying to make sense of me and says “I think I like you but I don’t know why.”
As I stare at the bustling children of Good I suddenly find myself yearning to be one of them. I just feel so left out and alone in this world. No, I tell myself, There’s no point trying to make friends when you know you’ll just let them down. No-one would want to be friends with you. Realising I don’t actually know where I’m going, I glance at my schedule. My next lesson is Surviving Fairy Tales. Apparently I’m in group 7. Resetting my mind, I try to make my way through the hoards of people. Unfortunately, the floors are polished to perfection and I refused to wear my high heels so I slip and find myself skidding across the floor, crashing into a banister and very nearly sliding down the stairs if it wasn’t for a pair of hands, helping me up. I look at my rescuer, wanting to tell him how I didn’t need his help, and freeze.
I haven’t been paying attention to Everboys that much, I just knew they were there. This is the first time I’ve ever made eye contact with one. To be honest, I find them quite dull. Never been interested in love much either. Not that I ever had the chance to explore that area. Until now. I stare into those aquamarine eyes that shimmer with kindness and find myself lost in thought. He smiles at me. I attempt to gather myself, to tell this boy that I think he’s stupid and that I didn’t need his help. But something inside me makes me stay. Something inside me is begging to stay with him. Only when he hands me my books do I remember myself. I feel blood rush to my cheeks and anger start to pound in my vains.
“I didn’t need your help! Honestly, you just think you’re so perfect because you’re a boy! This might come as a surprise to you, but just because I’m a girl doesn’t mean I’m weak. I was perfectly fine on my own, thanks.” and, without waiting for his reply, I bolt off down the stairs, secretly telling myself off for blowing my chance.
I find myself at the Blue Forest edge. I am slightly calmed by the cool air, and I take a second to appreciate the peacefulness of the Forest. Students file out from the Tunnel of Trees, all chattering excitedly. We organise ourselves into Forest Groups. I am with a gang of Neverboys, a coven of Nevergirls, two Evergirls called Carmen and Destiny, a few other Everboys and- oh, the boy from earlier. We are with a small, stout woman. She introduces herself as Professor Jamani and starts explaining the lesson. She says we are going to be unlocking our fingerglows- whatever that means. For some reason, it feels strangely familiar to me. But everyone else must know because at the word ‘fingerglow’ they all freak. Professor Jamani quiets them down and explains that our fingerglows open us up to spells.
“But you must use it wisely and sensibly. In lessons you will be taught spells to help you in a benefitial way for others. However, some students have been known to take to the library and teach themselves highly dangerous spells and use them on others. Mostly Nevers, obviously, but I have been told to tell you nonetheless, I trust you will not take this path. Of course, if you do, there will be severe consequences. Understood?” she follows on. I look around me. My fellow students are nodding nervously.
We move to a clearing in the forest where we wait for our turn. I try to busy myself with watching squirrels as I feel my heart gaining speed. I am distracted by the previous boy coming up to me. Now I can see him more, I have a better chance of studying his features. Dark blond hair brushed upwards off his face, blue eyes that portrayed his every emotion, tanned skin dotted with freckles. I have to be true to myself- he is quite handsome.
“Look, about earlier, I never meant….”
“Forget it.” I tell him, “I was being stupid.”
“No you weren’t, I realise how it came across. I’m Jason by the way, who are you?”
“Rosetta.” I grunt, still not looking at him.
Now suddenly Jamani is in front of me telling me to hold my hand out. I do so and watched in wonder as she does this strange thing with my bone to unlock my fingerglow. When she has finished I am left with a silvery blue finger that is growing hotter by the second. Suddenly a jet of light shoots out of the end, the same colour of my finger. Jamani chuckles to herself and says,
”Well done Rosetta. Don’t worry, it is normal for that to happen. Soon, you will be a fine young spell master.” I look around at my smiling classmates, finally feeling accepted amongst them. They are all happy for me, I even see Jason smiling. It seems I might be alright after all.
Do I really want to be here? I don’t know. Everyone describes it as the place that changes your life forever, but what if that’s not in a good way? No-one ever mentions the fact that you’re away from your family for a long time, or the fact that you don’t get a choice whether you come or not. You’re just taken, and there’s nothing you can do about it, you don’t get a say in whether you want to have the chance of becoming sentenced to living as an animal for the rest of your life. What if you don’t want to be in a fairy tale? What if you want normal life? It’s not our fault that we have parents who were in a fairy tale. It’s not our fault who we ended up a child of. Yet, they force you to be like them, and you never get a say in your future. Why should I suffer just because my parents are Tedros and Agatha? I’m nothing like them! I don’t have a shred of bravery nor leadership in me, but I’m made to go into a place were you’re meant to have these skills. That’s just separating the weak from the strong, and it’s unfair. No-one know of my ancestry, by the way, and I would rather it stay that way. Monica of Camelot. Such a big name, but such little hope. I haven’t told anyone, that’s laughable. The only upside of it, well there really isn’t one. People say I’m ungrateful, but they don’t know what it’s like, to have everyone expecting amazing things from you, and to have no talents or possibilities. Life at home’s alright, I get round, but I feel there’s just always something missing from it, and I’ve never had a normal relationship with my parents, either. I’m always living in their shadow: everywhere I go I get people coming up and telling me how great my parents are, and how much they’ve achieved. I never get recognised for who I am, no-one ever cares about my personality. I have nobody to talk to about this, so I’m just sitting on my bed, thinking. I’m on my own- Rosetta is out in the library. I hear a quiet knock at the door. It slowly creaks open and I pretend to be reading. In front of me is the prettiest girl I’ve ever seen. By far.
Life finds it’s way of getting it’s own back on you. I’ve learnt that the hard way. People will be nice, people will be mean. It doesn’t matter. Life is always the thing that you end up paying back. My fathers face when Rosetta wasn’t there in the morning, the morning after the night of the School Masters kidnappings, well, that’s probably the shock that sent him to his grave. But now I’m here. The place I’ve been scared of since the moment I was born. I never thought I would be, hoped I wouldn’t, and knew I wouldn’t when the two kids had been taken, and we were all safe for another four years. But I guess I was wrong. I had just been out to the village to buy myself some food, seen as I was looking after myself after father died, when a woman beckoned me aside. She looked old, but not the kind of old that meant you were going to die soon.
“You have been accepted into the School for Good.” she had said. I didn’t know how to reply.
“I can’t be, are you sure you’re not *****? The two children were already taken, so how can I be chosen?” the woman had shaken her head.
“No questions, child. We do not fully know ourselves. We just know there’s suddenly place missing in our school and…..some of our most reliable sources have suggested you fill it.” I crossed my arms.
“Look, lady. Even if you are telling the truth, you can’t make me go. I’m not going to some school where I’ll learn how to smile and sing. I’m not. So please go away.” the woman had shrugged, then said before walking away,
“Thought you might like to know that if you do choose to accept, you will be put in a dormitory with two other girls. Monica of Camelot and-” she flashed me a grin “-Rosetta of Woods Beyond.” the sashayed off. That night I had found everything I needed laying on my bed, including a map on how to get to the nearest ‘Flowerground’. And that very same night I had packed and left.
To avoid being recognised by Rosetta I had completely changed my look, and was surprised to see how different I seemed. I also made sure everything I had was changed from ‘Woods Beyond’ to ‘Camelot’. I had arrived to see a girl with inky black hair sitting on her bed. “Must be Monica.” I thought, as that was definitely not Rosetta. She looked, how can I say, shocked. And I guess I was too.
Books. My one comfort device. I always go to the library during my free time, it makes me feel happier than usual and also helps me with my work. I don’t have any friends yet, so I never have to meet someone somewhere or other, I can just read. It also helps me forget about things. Like, for instance, Jason. Unless, of course, he comes and approaches you when you’re there, which he does. With the combined facts that he comes in like a mouse, and that I completely block out the real world while reading, I don’t notice him until he says my name. I look up from ‘The Wonders of Talking to Animals’ with the same face I give everyone when they interrupt me when I’m reading.
“Can we go somewhere?” Jason asks me. I don’t really know what to think of it.
“Ummm, why? I hardly know you, and anyways, don’t you have somewhere to be?” I retort. He shakes his head.
“Nah, nothing on today. So I thought I’d come to get to know you better.” I raise my eyebrows.
“‘Get to know me better’? Why would you want to ‘get to know me better’. Just because I said sorry doesn’t mean you’re suddenly my best friend. So, off you go.”
With that I go back to ‘The Wonders of Talking to Animals’, finally satisfied I’ve banished him from my life forever. But he just shrugs.
“Which is why I want to know you. You don’t seem to be around people very much, and I have a feeing you’ve got a story to tell. Just….please, I need to show you something.”
“Fine.” I give in, snapping the book shut. He grins.
So that’s how I find myself on the roof of the castle, looking over the grounds of my new home with the person whose image has permanently been stuck in my mind for the past week. Jason motions for me to sit down. I do so, though I keep a distance away from him to show I am annoyed. I have to admit, it’s peaceful up here, you feel a sense of freedom that you don’t get anywhere else in the castle.
“You like it?” he asks, gesturing around.
“Yeah, I suppose.” I murmur.
“I’m glad. I like to come up here sometimes, just to think.” he replies, gazing off into space.
“Oh. What do you think about?”
“A lot of things, but mainly you.” I don’t know what I felt then. I look at him, waiting for the surge of anger or annoyance to rush into my heart. Instead, it skips a beat.
“I see. So, um, so what did you want to bring me up here for?”
“I wanted to ask you something.”
“Go on then.”
“What made you so reserved and untrusting?”
“Life.” I reply simply.
“Life?” he questions, “What d’ya mean?”
“It’s complicated and nothing to do with you. And I wouldn’t tell you anyway.”
“So then why did you let me bring you up here?” he grins.
“Because I thought that would get you away from me so I could stop thinking about you.” I blurt.
“You think about me too?” he says quietly.
“Oh. It’s fine, you don’t have to tell me if you don’t want to, I just thought…”
“That I would like someone to trust? Because that’s what I’ve wanted since, well….ever.”
“What happened then?”
“Basically, my mum died when I was two and then my dad got into this whole fight with the police about our rights and so on, as he had just been accused of stealing something which was actually staged by one of my mum’s previous lovers to make my dad look bad. But he lost and was taken to prison, which meant the next person in line to take care of me was my aunt. Unfortunately, she was deemed unfit so I was left with no-one else able to take care of me. Then I was moved to an orphanage where the kids bullied me and called me a freak, until I was adopted five months later by the man who staged my dads robbery. He beat me and punched me and made my life miserable, so did is daughter who I trusted to make him stop but she never did. But then I got kidnapped to come here.” I have never told anyone this before so I am unsure how Jason is going to react. He smiles and I can feel his fingers creeping up my back. He leans in.
“So not basic at all then.” he whispers. I close my eyes.
“No, not really.”
And then his lips are touching mine.
Ever since that night on the roof, everything has changed. I feel a weight lifted off my shoulders that I never knew was there The loneliness that was mounting on me without me even realising, well, it was unhealthy. It’s amazing how much just putting a little trust in one person can do for you. I have also tried to communicate with Mo more, and get to know her. This has played off well, because now she is my best friend. We have a new room-mate, but I don’t know what to think of her. By far, she is the prettiest person I have seen in my life; clear blue eyes, smooth fair skin, wispy blonde hair, but she seems a bit suspicious. For some reason, I feel like I recognise her, something about her eyes looks like……I’m just being stupid, she’s from Camelot anyway. But the names…… I’m just being over-cautious, Lola is a perfectly common name.
Having Jason is also a main factor in my newfound happiness, mainly because I trust him, and that’s something I’ve not been able to do in a long time. I always sit with him at lunch, under the same tree each day. I’ve never experienced the feeling I feel with him at the moment, and I’m wondering if this is what love feels like. If it is, it feels amazing. Because of the way our day is planned, I don’t get to see him that much but I try to spend as much time with him as possible. We have weekends, of course, and that is the majority of time I spend with him. He comes from Jaunt Jolie and has a brother that is in the same year as us. But something about his brother, Jerome is his name, rings alarm bells in my head. He always seems to be looking at me, and it’s weird for someone to not have their eyes off you the whole day. He is extremely spooky and tries to flirt with me openly, although he’s not that good. I don’t think Jason has ever had a good relationship with his brother, and is always looking at him with a great amount of disgust. I can understand that, as I’m not the biggest ‘Jerome fan’ either. Jason’s always good to me though, and let’s me make my own decisions, which I appreciate enormously. And my work has improved, I am 4/120 in my school. But that also means something else, that I will be entering the Trial by Tale.
64/120. Wow. Actually, I think the daughter of Agatha and Tedros deserves some applause, don’t you? You couldn’t make this stuff up. At least I won’t have to go into the trial, saves me from more humiliation. But my best friend -a reader- has snaked her way up to 4th. Now I come to think of it, a lot like my mum. In any words, she’s going into that trial whether she likes it or not. And I guess the latter. Although she always has a fierce come-back line prepared on her lips, she doesn’t believe in fighting. She is good at it, obviously, but she doesn’t see a reason for it. But Lola? A completely different story. She whole-heartedly believes in it, saying good manners and kind words didn’t help us win the great wars. I almost agree with her, but not quite. I think that we can’t settle every argument with a tea-party, but there is no reason to have wars over disagreements. And that is what it always comes back to- a simple disagreement. If we get to the bottom of our problems, then we can find out what made us angry in the first place and fix that. But, of course, it’s never that easy. Humans don’t all see logic and, in most cases, rush into unfixable situations way too quickly. Rose says this is the smartest thing she’s ever heard and if I ran the world, it would be a better place. But I don’t know, I don’t have the bravery to give orders and, the way I’m going, I will end up as a jellyfish. I do try though, and Rose has been giving me extra training during our free-time. This is a extremely selfless thing to do as she is giving up her own time to help me. But that’s just the way Rose is. And she tells me she enjoys it. We work in the library, where there is no distractions. At least, there isn’t meant to be. Jason’s brother, Jerome, will not leave her alone. Only the other day we were studying for a big exam when he came in with a half-dead rose. Which is sweet, but not at all thoughtful or smart. Given that his crush’s name is literally ROSE, you would think he would see reason and not bring in a half-dead one. But, then again, boys don’t tend to have common-sense. The most popular boy- Jason- can barely even tie his own shoelaces. If you took away girls, I honestly think boys would turn back into apes.
I never knew how biased and cleeky humans could be. I know I only accepted my place in this school to finish the job my father started, but I thought I could fake being nice and gain people’s trust- then maybe Rosetta’s. But no, people just seemed to have decided they hate me, and to avoid me. Fair enough, it’s not like I want to be friends with them anyways. Being in this school makes me feel sick. All the pink and prettiness, and then all the boys are cocky and idiotic, and have blue representing the. How sexist can you get? I just want to get this job done and get out of here. And I think I’ve decided something. I’m going to pretend that I hate Rosetta because she’s dating Jason and I like Jason. And then when the Trial by Tale comes……..
“Rose? Wake up!”
I am drifting through a perfect land, with no people, only beautiful forms of life that I’ve never seen before. I look up to see a face watching it all intently, a face I know. I can’t quite make it out through the fog, but now it’s clearing and I am about to see it…
“Wake up sleepyhead.” I sit up and see Jason sitting on the edge of my bed, smiling softly.
“You’re not meant to be here.”
“Well here I am” I smile and fall into his warm chest,
“Why are you here?”
“Thought I’d give you a wake up call, seen as you missed breakfast entirely.” he replies, putting his arm around me. I whip round to the clock on my bedside table. 9:07. Breakfast was an hour ago. But that means…
“Classes start in around 20 minutes.” Jason smirks. I launch off my bed and slip my clothes on as fast as I can. He grins and kisses me before leaving and saying,
“Trust you to sleep in a whole hour and still make it to classes on time” I shake my head and gather my books, thinking I must of forgotten to turn my alarm on. But then I remember Mo reminding me and me doing so. So that begs the question: who wanted me to turn up to class late?
I don’t regret what I did. Besides, people already see me as mean, so it doesn’t affect my image. And, the way I’ve planned it, there will only be positive outcomes. 1. It’ll give me more time with Jason to play with the new rumor that I like him, 2. Rosetta’ll miss class and the teachers opinion of her will go down. So I stare triumphantly at her empty seat as I slip into the classroom. I look round for Jason and see him smiling to himself about something. I am about to sit in the seat next to him when I am stopped in my tracks. She just entered! Rosetta just entered! I am shell-shocked, so much so that I can’t even move. But how is that possible? She can’t of just woken up, you should see the way she sleeps on the weekends. So that means someone must of got her up. Someone’s onto me. I stifle a scream and try to relax my face with mixed results. I can’t approach Jason now- especially as Rosetta’s just sat next to him. “Later” I think as I sit on the opposite side of the room, “You can talk to him later“. I can’t concentrate for the rest of the lesson, my mind is whirring as to how to get Jason alone. That’s when I see Jason sitting at the front of the class instead. Confused, I whirl back to him sitting next to Rosetta as before. So then that must be… I grin. “Plan sorted” I think to myself.
If Jason hadn’t woken me up, I would be in a very bad place right now. Apart from being starving from having missed breakfast, I am fine and keeping up my ranks as usual. But I am still in the dark as to who turned my alarm off. First off, it can’t be Mo for obvious reasons. And I did doubt Lola would do it, right up until I saw the look she gave me once I walked into the class. And, now I think about it, there is actually some concrete evidence for this. For one, she has easy access to my clock as she sleeps in the same room as me. Also, I’ve heard rumors that she likes Jason and this could of been the reason behind it, though I don’t know her full plan. Thirdly, she’s third to last in the school and I’m third best so she could of also wanted my ranks to drop. Despite this, I am still unsure whether it’s her or not and I don’t want to make unfair assumptions and go blaming people without being sure on the truth. And I want to trust her, so far she hasn’t actually done anything wrong. Unlike Jerome who is driving me up the wall. He seriously hasn’t grasped the fact that I don’t like him very much and continues to try to make me fall in love with him. So my lunch today was a disaster.
“Hi Rose.” he said as I sat down next to Jason. I sighed. This was his usual method of getting my attention.
“Rosetta to you.” I replied, failing to keep the edge out of my voice.
“Your best friend calls you it, so why can’t your true love?”
“He does” I replied. Next to me, Jason snorted. He knew I was talking about him.
“But you just told me not to.” I couldn’t help but snigger. He honestly thought he was my true love.
“Ok. I’m done here. I am NOT your true love and I wouldn’t date you if you were the last boy on Earth. Sorry to break it to you bud, but it’s true.” He retreated backwards, not looking anymore discouraged than when he came, if anything looking less so. I went back to my lunch, pleased with myself that I hadn’t exploded. But I could feel the anger rising and was struggling to push it down. I was about to lose myself until I felt Jason’s hand holding mine.
“I’m right here.” he said and my anger vanished.
“What would I do without you?” I whispered
“You’d probably be dating that brat.” he replied. I laughed, not because I found it particularly funny, but because it didn’t feel right to be angry anymore. Then I saw Lola striding towards us. I noticed the frustration in her eyes, like she had just failed a task. Hands on hips, she approached us, though her focus was on Jason. She forced a smile and spoke.
“Jason?” she cooed ” Can I talk to you for a minute?”
“No, not unless it’s something important.” he said. Lola eyed me.
“Well, I’ve been meaning to talk to you about some…” she studied me again “…relationship advice”
“Like?” Jason replied, bored.
“Your choice of girlfriend.” My eyes widened with understanding. I knew who tried to make me sleep in.
“It was you wasn’t it? You turned my alarm off!” I lashed.
“Yes, well about that, who woke you up?” she replied, not at all shaken. I growled.
“Me.” Jason said angrily ” And you’re sick. Now get out of my sight before I make you!” Lola started to scramble backwards, “I’m perfectly fine with my girlfriend thank you very much, and I wouldn’t go out with you any day of the week.” she fled to the other side of the clearing.
“Well,” I said, getting up and brushing my legs down, “I think that concludes our lunch for today” Jason laughed and we walked back to the castle together, not doubting our love any less then we did before.
We stand in the clearing, awaiting the teachers’ arrival. Trial by Tale is tomorrow and they are about to announce who the wildcard will be. I don’t really have a preference as to who it will be, all I am certain of is it won’t be me. Everybody is anticipating it will be Lola, though I am unsure. Next to me, Rose is bobbing up and down like a bouncy ball. She knows that whoever is chosen can be a matter of winning or losing for her. I don’t really care, so I pick at my nails while the bubbling students around me gossip. Beside us, there is a board of the names of the people going into the Trial. It reads:
Carmen of Neverland
Adam of Kingdom Kyrgios
Rosetta of Woods Beyond
Lukas of Ladelflop
Jason of Jaunt Jolie
Olive of Pasha Dunes
Oscar of Oakwood
Destiny of Ginnymill
Amber of Maidenvale
Sebastian of Shazabah Desert
Evil’s contestants will remain a mystery to us until the night of the Trial. I hear the hush sweeping over the children and feel Rosetta go from a ball to a kangaroo. I look up and see why- the teachers are here. They go over the rules of the Trial and what you gain from winning it. I mostly ignore this, but refocus when they move onto the topic of Wild Cards.
“As of this year, the Deans are permitted to choose a Wild Card- someone who didn’t make the team but they feel will bring something to their respective school’s nonetheless.” Dovey explains “We have made a decision. So, without further ado, the Wild Card will be…. Monica of Camelot!” My brain didn’t process that. I am confused- why is Lola not celebrating? Then the realisation seeps in. Because she wasn’t chosen. I was. My whole body goes ridged and the world around me turns into slow motion. I see Lola glowering at me, she wanted this as much as I didn’t. This can’t be happening, it has to be a mistake. But I see my name on the board, flashing in full colour. There is no mistakes. I am going into the Trial.
I emerge from the Blue Forest, with a graze across my windpipe and my whole left side drenched in blood. What I just witnessed was the worst experience of my life. And that’s saying a lot, considering my awful childhood.
Nine hours ago, I was wrapped in a blanket on one side of the clearing. The Trial had just begun and, since I was third best, I didn’t have to go in for another two and a half hours. I had been prepped all week for this but I wasn’t ready. Alas, before I knew it, eight pairs had entered an I was standing outside the gates to the Blue Forest, waiting to be told to go in. The signal came and I felt hands grab my back and push me in. Stumbling in the dark, I went over my plans in my head. Either I could mogrify and risk getting caught or I could try to gather allies and take on Nevers. I decided to try and find Jason and Mo. Without thinking, I was running through the Fern Field and over to the Pine Glen. From there I could get a decent view of the forest. I was stopped in my tracks by voices ahead. They sounded familiar so I hid behind a tree and listened.
“Look, if we go over to the willows then maybe we can use the sleeping powder to our advantage.” a dull voice was saying,
“Bah! Knowing you, you’d fall asleep within five miles of them.” a venomous voice replied.
“You don’t even know me!” the dull one mumbled.
“You’re lucky I got you into this Trial in the first place. I could very well slit your throat right now and be rid of you.”
“Well you need me to help get Jason. I know him better than anyone.”
“He hates you. Besides, I can’t very well get him until I’m done with that snake he’s dating.” I heard a sigh and the sound of feet moving further away.
“If you’re so clever, where do you suppose we go?”
“I bet the cowardly girl would mogrify somewhere. For all we know, she could be a blade of grass spying on us right this second.”
“Ok then, I’ll be back once I’ve trampled out the whole forest(!)”
“That’s not would I suggest, you *****. I think we should capture that girl she hangs out with and get her to come to us.” I gulped. Whoever these people were, they were after Mo. But I recognised their voices from somewhere. I needed to find Mo before they did. I creeped my way over to the Cyan Caves, being careful not to snap one of the many twigs on the floor. It was a cold night, and there was a powerful breeze making me wrap my cloak further over my arms. I heard howls and turned. The final two had entered. We had lost two people, but Evil were three down. There was still a long night ahead of me, and I wasn’t sure I would make it. Seeing the caves, I stopped and looked around. There was a heaviness about the night, and I couldn’t see very far in front of me. But something made me freeze. A gleaming pair of eyes blinked back at me through the darkness. I knew I should run but I just stayed there, staring back at them. For a long while there was silence. Them another pair appeared, then another, and another. Soon I was faced with ten pairs of gleaming emerald eyes. This is the point my nerves kicked in and I started backing away. But it was too late. Slowly, the eyes came forward and I could see their whole bodies. Wolves. They moved identically, each looking as loathing as the others. One charged straight for me and ripped open my left side. But they weren’t done. I knew I couldn’t run, for they were circling me now and I was in too much pain to move. I saw them smirk as if to say that I didn’t stand a chance. And I knew they were right. I closed my eyes, awaiting the moment for them to pounce. But it never came. Cautiously, I opened my eyes. Lola looked back at me, holding a sleeping willow. I looked around and saw ten unconscious wolves. Gasping for breath, I managed only one sentence.
“W..w..why did you save me?”
“Why? Because I couldn’t let them take the pleasure of killing you away from me” she said, smirking. I had no time to reply before I was gagged. The last thing I saw was Lola’s bright eyes, then I fell unconscious.
When I woke, I was in a part of the Forest I didn’t recognise. I saw Lola grin poisonously straight at me.
“Oh look. Our little princess has woken up. Shall we show her our guest?” I realised I was still gagged and my hands were tied behind my back. Blood was flowing from my left side, and I was in agony. Jerome was standing next to me, as if to guard me. Like I could even move in my current state. I knew who the voices from earlier were. Lola reappeared, dragging a gagged shadow behind her. She turned into the light and I nearly passed out again. Mo. She gave me a panicked look.
“Would you look at that. Two little princesses, side by side. Too bad one’s about to get killed” Lola said with a faked smile. I exhaled. Mo would live. Lola held her hand out to Jerome. From behind him, he pulled out a sword. Mo was screaming into her gag now, but I showed no resistence. Lola smiled at me. ” I’ll tell Jason you loved him when he takes me to the ball.” she said ” On three.” I gave Mo a grateful look and closed my eyes, ” One” Lola pressed the blade onto my neck “Two” It dug further into my skin. ” Thr…”
“STOP!!!!” came a cry. I opened my eyes. Jason ran into view. He took in the scene. Lola digging a sword into my neck, Mo thrashing in a corner and his brother, his own brother whom he’d shared most of his life with watching on, amused. Without hesitation, he rushed over to me and pulled my handkerchief from my pocket. He dove to the ground and I found myself in the clearing. Still gagged, I lay there and felt fairies whisk me off into the castle. My opinions changed about some people tonight, but I know one thing: Lola does not deserve to be in the School for Good.
Please tell me this is a dream. Please. Oh my goodness did that actually happen. Here I am, strolling along in the Blue Forest, wondering why I haven’t been attacked yet, when all of a sudden I see people in the distance looking dangerous. I move closer thinking that these must be Nevers and then I see that sick girl about to kill my girlfriend! And that’s not even the worst part. MY BROTHER WAS HELPING HER! I thought he loved Rose! I’ve always hated Jerome but at the end of the day….. HE’S STILL MY BROTHER! Oh god what is happening? This is so ironic as I’m always the one calming Rose down and now I’m here screaming like a maniac. But I don’t think it’s wrong that I’m doing that. Rose has been in hospital for two weeks and is still in unendurable pain. TWO WEEKS! I was allowed a few days off school to ‘get over the shock’ but I don’t think it worked because I still can’t believe what happened that night. And of course I still want to throttle Jerome every time I see him. Which, to be honest, is not a lot. Him and Lola haven’t been seen at all during classes. There’s many rumors going around about them- the most popular being that they were expelled. But I know that’s not true because I’ve sent many letters to Mum asking if Jerome is with her but she always says no. I wish it was though. Actually, no, I would rather they’d been failed so I wouldn’t have to come home to his sick face. Mo is fine, they didn’t really sustain any serious injury to her- she was more bait for Rose. And it worked. That’s one of her weak points- she always feels that she alone has to be the one to help or she will live in guilt for the rest of her life. Anybody else, anyone, could of rescued Mo. But no, she had to do it, even if Lola wanted her dead. And she would be dead if I hadn’t intervened. Good I did, though if it wasn’t for me she would have never had to be injured in the first place. That was Lola’s stupid reason- ME. I don’t know what she’s heard, but murdering your crush’s girlfriend isn’t the best way to show them you love them. She risked expulsion even getting into that Trial. Apparently, she was in the forest way before the Trial had started. Why she wanted Jerome, I haven’t the foggiest. That pig-face couldn’t be useful to anyone. He haunts my dreams and haunts my waking hours. How I will crush him the next time I see him.
My consciousness wavers, but I force myself to stay awake despite my pain. Actually, I don’t know if you can describe it as pain anymore. It’s more a numbness to my body that somehow hurts in the worst way. Every now and then I have a flash of fierce agony, though I like those moments better than my normal sufferings because they feel more real. Everything around me seems too bright– giving me a splitting headache to add to my troubles. And, as if that wasn’t enough, I have completely lost the ability to speak. The doctors say that it could be shock, though they think it’s because it hurts too much. I think it’s a mix of both. I have been transported to an emergency hospital outside of school, though I don’t know exactly where. I have missed quite a lot of what is going on as I have been asleep for most of the time. Everything seems like a dream now, and I can never really tell whether I’m asleep or not. One thing I do know is that I’m not getting any better. I have had five operations since I got here, all of them on my side. The wolf literally ripped off half of my body, missing my lungs by a milimeter. I now have one kidney, thank goodness my body can survive with just one. A quarter of my stomach was also taken, that has been stitched up, though I will never be able to eat as much as I did before. If I even survive, that is. The doctors have doubts about that too. The one thing that has healed? The graze that Lola gave me. A graze. That and a few stiches is what I have to show for being in hospital for two weeks. At this rate, I won’t make it through the month. I’ve even started wishing Lola had killed me that night, at least I would be saved from suffering. I have had some personal improvement. Like now I can stay awake for a minute when I used to only be able to stay conscious for thirty seconds. However, I doubt my survival more than the doctors do.
Would I call that a fail? Most definitely not. I had hoped to kill Rosetta, but this is almost better. If she were dead, it would have been over for her. With this, she has to suffer. Oh goodness, I really am a monster aren’t I? Fair play to them moving us into the School for Evil. My rightful place all along. And I won’t turn into a rotten old witch. No, I’ll turn into Evil’s greatest triumph. I can picture it now. The girl who emerged from the flames. That’s my talent- turning into fire. Jerome isn’t so happy with his new home. Ridiculous. How can you not love this place? He was never meant to be in Good anyway. You can’t have two people from the same place in the same school’s. That’s preposterous. No-one Evil has ever come to Camelot though. I would have been laughed at if it wasn’t for my act in the Trial. I have gained never-ending respect from that. The one thing I don’t understand is how I wasn’t rejected from the School for Good the second I set foot in that place. My only guess is that the Storian allowed me to go in so my story would unfold naturally. But that’s stupid. The Storian isn’t writing my tale. Is it?
She’s dead. I know she is. It doesn’t matter if the doctors haven’t officially announced it yet. I can tell. I feel too numb to cry, all my emotions have been washed away, leaving me with an emptiness clawing away at my insides. There’s nothing left. Although Rose is the one whose really gone, I feel like my soul ran away with her. As I sit on her bed, holding her pale, cold hand, I feel everything I have ever known, cared for or loved morphing into an unusual hatred, leaving my blood boiling and my face an angry red. I may still have a life on this planet. But I know right now that I will never be myself again. Jason is here too, but he doesn’t show his face much- he just sits in the room allocated to him, staring blankly at the wall. When he comes for meals, he’s chirpy and bright, with a smile that doesn’t reach his eyes, leaving them as empty as ever. Today was the first time I’ve seen him up and about other than meals. He came in with bloodshot eyes, not trying to hide his sorrow. No words were spoken between us, I didn’t even look in his direction. He came and sat on the other side of the bed, though he couldn’t look at Rose. I’m not expecting him to speak; I haven’t spoken in days.
“Why did this have to happen?” he sounds like a scared child, with no resemblance to the part he plays at meals.
“There’s no reason. It just did.” I whisper back. He turns to face me.
“If there’s no reason, it shouldn’t have happened at all.” he sounds less scared now, but his voice is raw. I look back at him.
“That’s just life I suppose.”
“I’m never going back there.” he replies, with a sudden hatred in his voice “Ever.”
“I don’t know if we have a choice.” I say quietly. He moved closer.
“We can make it. You were her best friend and I her boyfriend. She would’ve wanted us to run off and live a proper life. She would have wanted us to stay together!” I gaze into his blue eyes.
“Really? The girl who believed in strength in numbers? The one who always said that if you stop trying to chase happiness and believe in the life you’ve got then you’ll become the happiest person on the world without realising it?” I move even closer. “Because I don’t think she would.” I look down at my feet, the hope vanishing from inside me, returning to emptiness. When he speaks next, his voice is smaller than a whisper.
“But that didn’t work out for her, did it?” He tilts my head up, “Don’t you think she would have wanted us to learn from her mistakes? To live a better life?” I put my face up to his so I could feel his breath.
I felt his lips touch mi, sending a wave of heat rippling down my spine. My emptiness was replaced by a warmth, filling my insides and leaving my head dizzy.
There was a raspy cough behind us. We turned in shock.
Rose had opened her eyes and was smiling her old smile.
I ignored the shouts from below, I just focused on my path ahead. Hurtling up the stairs, I felt my head go light with possibilities.
What if the Storian was writing my tale? Am I the villain? Does that mean I’ll die a witch while Rosetta get’s glory?
” No.” I soothed myself “If that is the case, I’ll make sure I win the story and send that snake to her grave”
My brain had no more time to consider these fantasies as I’d reached the door. I knew knocking would be useless but I had to try anyway– I didn’t want to go to the hard way before I’d tried the easy. I raised my fist and pounded on the door. Nothing. I sighed.
” Dean Sophie?” I hollered “I need to talk to you about something” Still, no answer. I shook my head and erupted into flames. Twirling faster than sound inside my firey haven, I crashed into the door and watched as it caught light and began to burn down. Satisfied, I returned back to my human form to see two emerald eyes emerge from the darkness. As she came into the light, I made out Dean Sophie’s perfect perportions, smooth skin and silky hair. She held up a shaking finger to the raging fire tearing through the room. I smiled and enjoyed her torment a second longer before I blew lightly and it disappeared, repairing everything that it had damaged.
”H…H…Hello Lola” she stuttered, ” W..Was there any n..need for that?”
”I offered you a choice and you chose the hard way” I replied with a shrug
“W…Well you need to leave now”
” I haven’t completed my task yet” I said, pushing her out the way. I felt my heart gaining speed as I approached the Storian. To my horror, there was a book lying on the table, with a metal pen depicting this scene. I flipped to the front, ignoring the pen’s protests and staggered backwards. It read:
The Tale of Rosetta and Miso
But who was….
”That would be me” a cold voice said behind me.
I spun round but all I could see were shadows. No-one. Dean Sophie was still quivering in the corner, her emerald eyes gleaming in the darkness. I needed to find out what was going on immediately. From the moment I flipped the book to the front cover, it had been pitch black. The shadows lengthened and I stepped forward, beginning to see a figure slowly coming forward. Two grey eyes looked back at me, twinkling mischievously. Adjusting in the dark, my eyes saw broad shoulders, ash black hair and the palest skin imaginable. He came into the glint of moonlight in the center of the room and smirked at the open book on the table. No words formed in my mouth, I was too busy trying to prevent the flood of fear hitting my head.
“I believe we haven’t met. I’m Miso.” He didn’t extend his arm “You are probably wondering what in this stupid little world is going on. Let me explain” He smirked again “I was once a student of this very school like yourself” His eyes narrowed, if that was even possible for him to make them any less than the slits they already were “Although I was here from the start of the term instead of having to prove myself. I was a great student, if I do say so myself, and ended up on the leader track. But my group was worthless like the rest of the small-minded humans on this planet. I left them in the forest and continued my journey. However, I was confronted by no danger and my tale that I was destined to have left unwritten. I have been hanging around these past few years, vowing that one day the Storian would correct its mistake and start writing my tale. And guess what? That is exactly what it did” He said proudly “Though I’m not so happy with the puny girl I have to share the story with” He added under his breath “I am ready to bring glory to Evil and change the perception of it forever” At this Sophie raised her hand, nodding to the fact that she had already done just that “The right way” Miso continued, eyeing her “Not turning them into a version of Good that wears black. I will change how Evil are always seen as the villians. Because if Evil are the heroes, what does that make Good? If Evil are the heroes, what will happen to our future? And if Evil are the heroes, where does that put a girl whose stuck in the middle?” He allowed himself a smile. “I’ll tell you what. They are forever an outcast, not belonging to either school. And if you don’t belong here, well, I’ll have to ask you why you’re here at all.” I didn’t have time to gasp before I was hurtling through the air, landing in a heap before halfway bay. I tried to run back in, but I was blasted back the second I touched the door. The same thing happened with The School for Good. I didn’t know what to do, I couldn’t run away- the gates were still locked. I would live out the rest of my life here, starved and defeated and no-one would rescue me, no-one would know about me. Except…… There was a silhouette approaching. Hope returning, I ran to my Dean, knowing she could fix this, she knew where I belonged… And ran straight into Professor Dovey.
I stared at my hot chocolate, not wanting it in the slightest. Dovey’s office was bright- with no tracings of the darkness there was in the School Master’s tower.
“You are possibly the most mysterious girl I have ever had custody over. First you come into The School for Good late, come in the bottom three in the majority of your lessons but show no sign of hate towards the other students. Then you try to MURDER another student ,who,in case you were interested, is still in hospital”
“That’s not from what I did to her, it was one of the traps!”
Dovey ignored me
“Then you move into The School for Evil, and all seemed well until you went and got yourself thrown out. So now where do you stand?” I looked down
“Of course, it was never quite explained why you would choose to kill Rosetta. Witnesses say it was because of a boy but I strongly doubt this. Unless you are out of your mind, which you clearly aren’t, you would never just decide to kill a girl because you like a boy. As you know, killing stains one’s soul permanently and should never be attempted. And, doesn’t it seem strange how you suddenly had this powerful hatrid for Rosetta that made you want to kill her? Especially as you had never met her before this school. Unless the things you have been saying haven’t been truths at all. But that would be silly. She comes from Woods Beyond and you Camelot. You could have never met her in your life before. Right?” Her eyes bore through me and I felt my face flushing red “In the case that you have been telling lies, then I suggest you tell her who you are.”
“But how? I can hardly just stroll along to her unknown location like I’m walking across the street can I? And that would be even if I did have some explaining to do, which seems very unlikely” I tried to hide my red cheeks
“If you have to explain, you will find her on your own. But for now, you are dismissed” She stood up and started clearing her desk. I stared at her in disbelief, never believing anyone could be so stupid. I can’t find her on my own, for all I know she’s on the other side of the Endless Woods. I sighed as I stood up and head toward the door, trying to figure out my current situation. I opened the it absent-mindedly, not noticing the fact that it was very different to the passageway I was used to. I only came to my senses once it started to ***** down. I was in a stone tunnel, lit by flaming torches. Confused, I tried to turn back but saw that behind me was blocked by huge boulders. With no other choice, I made my way down the narrow tunnel, getting lower and lower by the second- soon I was on my hands and knees. At the very end was a door. I turned the handle and creeped in……..
…..Right into Rosetta’s ward.
Two pairs of eyes lock onto the girl who’d just entered the room. It would be three but the other person is asleep. How and why float across my mind, though my main attention is on the rage of hate that has just flooded every section of my brain, fierce and true, all aimed at this one girl. How a girl can cause so much hate , I don’t know, but one thing’s for sure–she is not welcome here. Jason has gone a mix of milk white and beetroot red. I can see both emotions in his eyes, like he doesn’t know what to pick. Seeing him, my head suddenly decides it might be scared of this girl and blocks out the flood, returning me to my normal colour. Lola doesn’t look like I remember her, nor the girl who haunts my dreams. Looking at her, you would never guess such a beautiful girl could cause so much pain to the person lying on the bed I’m sitting on. Yet, she did and has not been forgiven. I doubt she ever will be. She doesn’t move, she just stands there, making it worse for her than it would be if she had left.
“This isn’t what it looks like, just your stupid Dean playing a trick, alright” Already failed a task. I noticed the fear in her voice
“No. No it isn’t alright. You walk in here, after weeks and weeks of Rose suffering, you walk in here and say that?” It came before I could stop it “No-one likes you anymore, I don’t care about your new antics at Evil, no-one does. You’re just a pretty face, with no talent, personality or feelings, you were put on the Earth for one reason: to make people’s lives just that little bit harder. Or ,in this case, a lot harder” I gestured to Rosetta “A whole lot”
“I don’t want to hear it. You better leave now or you’ll be sorry. Don’t try to explain yourself, Lola. The damage is already done. You come from Camelot you say? Well if you don’t leave now, I have the power to make you die a very painful death. So try and fight me. The whole of Camelot will be against you”
“THAT’S WHAT I’VE BEEN TRYING TO SAY! IF YOU COULD ACTUALLY LISTEN, INSTEAD OF TRYING TO MAKE YOURSELF LOOK GOOD THEN MAYBE YOU WOULD KNOW BY NOW” she roared “Some Ever indeed.” Rose’s eyes shot open. To my utmost surprise, she said:
“Yeah, the best Ever I’ve ever known” she smiled to herself, clearly as surprised as we were that she could speak
“Look, Dovey made me come and tell you something. Maybe I haven’t exactly been telling the truth. I might not actually come from Camelot. Maybe, just maybe, I come from…..” Rose’s eyes cloud with shock
“I knew it” she whispered, fighting emotions “I just knew it. Your eyes gave it away.”
“Gavaldon” Lola finished, rubbing her face “Yes, it’s me. I know what I did was a little bit over the top but I had to finish what my dad started. He gave me the responsibility when he died, I couldn’t let him down”
I looked over to Jason, confused, thankful he looked just as bewildered as me. But then something clicked in him. His jaw dropped and his eyes bulged
“Your dad, he wasn’t……” He whispered to Lola
“He was” Rose said quietly
“He never quite understood love, him. Always thought it revolved around looks and physical variables. Never knew that it’s not about that, it’s about what’s on the inside.” Lola smiled “And I guess I made the same mistake” she turned to Rose “Your mum never meant anything to him, except pretty children. So when he was forced to marry a normal baker woman and had me, he never felt the love he was expecting. Maybe he loved me, I don’t know. But he never saw anything special in me, never saw my talents or cared about my beliefs and passions. So when he entrusted me with this..” She buried her face in her hands “I had to try. I wanted to prove to him that I was worthy of being his daughter.” Now I felt like I was missing the main piece in the puzzle- the one that connected all the others together
“But you didn’t have to. What he did to me, I’ll never forget. But maybe the thing that scarred me the most was you. All those times you said you’d help me, be my friend and make your dad stop. But the second he entered, you became his little henchman, you even handed him the whips sometimes. I forgave you every time, knowing that one day you’d change, stand up for me and stop my torture. But you never did. Your dad, he ruined my life. But you were part of that. And that’s something I don’t think I’ll ever get over” Rose replied, tears streaming down her face
“Then why was I kicked out of Evil?” Finally, something where I’m not the only one in the dark.
“Maybe because you’re willing to explain yourself and almost apologise for what you’ve done. That’s not an Evil trait.” Rose said, smiling sadly
“Sorry to ruin this moment, but I don’t have the foggiest what you’re talking about” my voice cut in. I didn’t mean to say that, I wanted to ask her later
“Oh, right. Basically Lola’s dad is the man who staged my dad’s robbery, sent him to prison, put me in an orphanage, adopted me and tortured me for a good few years” Rose explained. The final piece has been put in, tying half the puzzle together. I’ve only just noticed there’s another half.
“Lola, do you know anything about why you were kicked out?” I started, ruining the mood and getting down to business. In the past few months since the Trial, I’ve developed a few leadership skills. Lola describes a scene in the tower, with a mysterious man called Miso. She then moves on to talking about being in Dean Dovey’s office and how she was talked into coming here. All this sounds confusing enough until she adds, “Oh, and Rosetta, the Storian’s writing your fairy tale. I nearly choked when she said this, and that the man in the tower was part of it.
Something’s wrong here.
Very, very wrong.
Death. I often think about it. It never ceases to amaze me how souls just depart from this world. Many people have different views on what happens to them after this- with some believing they come back to another life, others stating they turn into ghosts or just stay in heaven. I have pondered all of these options but I don’t think any really fit. If I was a soul, would I go straight into another beings body, or would I spend some time as a ghost first? Or maybe I would just stay in Heaven for the rest of existence. This particular idea freaks me out a little, because I can’t stand the thought of just being in one place forevermore. Personally, I think that souls have a free choosing. Either they can go to Heaven immediately or spend some time as a ghost on Earth, watching over their loved ones and so on. I would definitely prefer this over having to stay in Heaven. But then that gets me thinking, do some souls just stay in the bodies of their human? Like, they either don’t want to part with the body they’ve spent a long time in and gotten used to or they are unable to do so. Trapped in their own body. Now that sends shivers down my spine. Apparently I died for a day too, though nothing happened to my soul. But whatever happened, I’m thankful for it- I am now able to use my voice. Speaking is one of those things we don’t really think about much, not until we have it taken away from us. I thought I’d lost my voice forever.
Right now I’m soaring through the sky on the back of a stymph, dusk falling, leaving a beautiful array of mixed colours on all sides. Tops of trees pop up under us, all bunched so close together that not a sliver of light could make it through. The air is cooler than it was during the day, but I can still feel a fraction of humidness hanging over us. After weeks of none-stop agony and boredness, I finally slip into a place of peace, letting my aching muscles relax. This is the best I’ve felt since mine and Jason’s first kiss. Which is ironic, seen as I have been put in hospital to feel better when actually I feel one hundred times better the second I’ve left it. I think it’s because I can’t stand being caged up like that, I need freedom. I’m starting to hear whispers behind me, so I try to tune into the Real World.
“I’ve never seen so much hate before,” a voice was saying, “It was quite frightening actually,”
“I don’t think you’re the person who tried to kill Rose in the Trial if you’re suddenly getting ‘frightened’,” a cool voice replies
“Come off it! Why does everyone have to go back to the Trial? I’m not the same person anymore, I’ve moved on from my dad. Stop referencing it. Can’t you just pretend it didn’t happen?” the first voice shoots back
“It’s quite hard to move on from a night where you tried to kill someone,” the second person retorts
“Oh just shut up you two! You’re like an old married couple or something!” I know this is Mo by the way she said it. As much as I want to, I don’t turn round, I would probably pass out from the pain. But I still want to be part of this conversation.
“Mo:one, others:nil,” I call out.
“Were you really listening to the whole conversation?” Jason asks,
“When there’s nothing else to hear, it’s kind of hard not to. Do you have a problem with that?” I answer back
“That’s not what I meant. I thought you were asleep or something,”
“Let’s face it. That’s quite a stupid excuuuuu….” I stop talking. In the distance, I can see The School for Good and Evil, obscured mostly by fog.
It’s time to find out who this ‘Miso’ really is.
The moment has come. The time to decide who I am loyal to. The only thing is, I’m not ready. Thoughts swirl round in my head, both sides hitting each other with bigger reasons why I should partner with them. I’m wishing for quiet, so I can actually focus on what I want but the noise just gets louder, thoughts morphing into people, screaming and shouting at me, saying they should be the ones I side with. I guess this is the price to pay for being two-faced. I never meant to be of course, I just did things without thinking, made decisions then doubted them, sided with someone then betrayed them, all things that go back to an insecure mind. I can’t be sure of anything anymore. I certainly don’t feel Evil, though my actions prove otherwise. But I didn’t do them by myself, I just thought it would be good to get one back on my brother. I never realised how much pain it would cause him, I thought he had stopped caring about me ages ago. Lola put up with me, though she wasn’t the nicest she could be. And then there’s Rose. Why did she have to suffer? I never knew Lola would do something like this to her, but at the time I just stood in, thought that she deserved what she was getting for being so rude to me before. Thought. Never knew, just thought. Always the side-kick, forgetting I have a mind of my own. I’m afraid many have been victims of my actions. Actions and thoughts are two very different things, but I have always had trouble telling them apart. Course, actions are visible things, but does thinking something about someone count as an action? And does making an action you are unsure of count as a thought? Everything used to be so black and white, you could tell this from that in the space of a heartbeat. But as you grow, this starts changing into that and that into this, until you cannot tell which is which anymore. I don’t know who I love or care for anymore, can’t tell who to stay away from. Everything and everyone I know mix up, leaving me not knowing who to trust. Life is like that. You think you know who the villain is, who your best friend is, who your siblings are, but in the end they end up switching roles or changing into the same person. The rage in my head reaches a peak, all my confusing thoughts taking their toll until darkness swallows me whole.
I gave up on walking ages ago. Trying not to fall asleep in Jason’s arms, I make a mental reminder to get crutches so I don’t have to rely on everyone as much. We are in the clearing, contemplating which way to go.
“Lola, you’ve been in both schools. Which route do you think we should take to get to The School Master’s Tower?” Jason says
“Just because I’ve been in both schools doesn’t mean I’m an expert at them,” she mutters “Anyway, I would say Sophie’s Way but we have to be careful as there is a charm on it for unwanted guests.”
“What about wanted ones?” Jason replies with a smirk.
“I would say she would allow them,” Lola says, plan dawning on her.
“Evil it is then,” Jason declares.
“Wait!” I cut in. Jason looks down at me.
“I want to walk,”
“Ummm, okay” He says, putting me down. I stumble along, but I manage. Why did I want to walk? Because I don’t want to always be seen as the weak one. I feel a hand on my back.
“You okay?” Jason asks. I smile at him.
“Best I’ve been in a long time,” I reply and walk further forward. The Evil Tunnel of Trees is dark and damp, attracting many bugs. When we turn into Evil Foyer, my heart stops. Lying in the centre is Jerome’s body, face down, as if he’d fallen over.
“Is he…..” I start nervously. Even though I hated him, I would never wish for him to die, especially as he’s Jason’s brother.
“No, he’s not dead,” says Jason bitterly, examining him, “Just passed out. Looks like he was stressed,”
“Can we stop wasting our time with wimps lying on the floor and start focusing on getting to The School Masters Tower?” Lola says, annoyed.
“Well you’re meant to be helping us and I don’t see you doing anything.” Mo says calmly. Lola just scowls at her. We leave Jerome and climb up some stairs, careful not to awake sleeping students. I find myself shivering at the cold feeling this castle gives off, wishing for the first time in my life to be back in Good. Sophie’s office isn’t far, and within minutes we’re walking in. But something isn’t quite how it’s supposed to be. Draws are open, their contents scattered across the floor, the desk has literally been turned over, a vase that used to stand on it lying shattered on the floor. The wallpaper has been ripped in places and half of the carpet is missing. No light illuminates, it seems the bulb has too been smashed and the cover gone. Most unnerving of all is the red ink splashed across the desk, reading:
Always one step ahead.
Maybe this won’t be as easy as we thought.
I don’t know why I feel so bad about this. A sick feeling slides up my throat, taking its usual resting place somewhere near my larynx. The air seems to have dropped by twenty degrees celcius as I’m shivering uncontrollably, despite the humid night. I can’t focus on the deep conversation around me, I keep instinctively glancing up to the School Master’s Tower, as if my brain knows there’s something much worse than we’re expecting up there. But that’s stupid, it’s only a man with no army and a tower, how much damage can he do? My heart joins the sickness and I start to distract myself with counting it’s beats. For some reason, it is pumping unusually hard, as if I had been out for a run. I wish I had, that would explain everything. Again, I take a sideways look at the Tower, but it’s no different from the time I looked five seconds ago.
I feel sweat dripping down my back.
Every little noise seems to alert my senses.
Suddenly, I stand up.
“What’s the matter with you? Think you heard a scary noise?” Lola taunts in a babyish voice.
“Something’s wrong here. I don’t know what, but it is. My brain knows.” I sound stupid but I don’t know how else to explain it.
“I s’pose it also knows the exact moment the bunny rabbit will attack as well,” Lola replies with an evil smirk, rocking back in her chair.
“Lola, just be quiet.” Jason says.
“Oh, no! Evil Mrs Lola is attacking perfect Ever-boy Jason” Lola mocks, rounding on him. Jason’s jaw starts to twitch.
“Don’t rise up to it,” Rose tells him.
“Now perfect Ever-boy Jason has nowhere to run from Evil Mrs Lola! What’s he gonna do?” Lola continues. Jason’s vains start to pulse.
“Jason.” Rose warns.
“Maybe Ever-boy Jason can count on Mr Mackawoowah to help!” Jason is starting to go red. “But, oh no! Mr Mackawoowah isn’t there! Perfect Ever-boy Jason will have to find someone else to help as he can’t do anything on his own!” Jason’s fists clench, “That’s it! Perfect Ever-boy Jason has had an idea! He can call on his stupid, good-for-nothing, pathetic, Ever-girl girlfriend to help! Oh dear, she has failed him like she always does.” He can take anymore.
“SHUT UP! JUST SHUT UP! WHY DO YOU ALWAYS TAKE JOY IN OTHER PEOPLE’S TORMENT! UNLIKE YOU, WE ACTUALLY HAVE OUR OWN LIFE! ONE THAT DOESN’T REVOLVE AROUND CREATING PROBLEMS IN OTHER PEOPLE’S LIFE! YOU ARE THE GOOD-FOR-NOTHING PERSON HERE, AND IF ANYONES’S PATHETIC, IT’S YOU!” Jason started taking huge, deep breaths at the end of this, and Rose was rolling her eyes at the ceiling. He went to go and sit by her and, by the looks of it, she started telling him off for blowing up.
“Yeah, like you’d have done any different. It’s not like I spent the whole of last term calming you down.” I heard him mumble. In the heat of events, I forgot about my quickening heart and the alerts going off in my brain. We were all so busied with sorting out a fluster that we didn’t notice the dark figure sliding down Sophie’s Way. So we were extremely surprised when a bag was pulled over us all.
It’s not the best thing to be trapped in a bag with your old archenemy, your boyfriend and your best friend. Like I wasn’t hurting enough already, I think to myself as my left side hits against bodies, leaving me in agony. I don’t know where we are headed, but I have an inkling it might be the School Master’s Tower. Sure enough, we are thrown out in a bundle in Sophie’s ‘Private Headquarters’. I have no time to think before rough hands find my back and cuff me, though I don’t think this is really necessary. Once I have the chance, I open my eyes and find myself in a similar setting to Sophie’s office. Only this time, there’s a man in front of us. He has ash-black hair that has been greased like mad, though there are still some curls at the front of his face. They are almost unnoticeable thanks to his sharp features under paler than pale skin. He stands tall, almost looking like a vampire. If it weren’t for the dark glint in his eye, one might consider him handsome.
“How nice it is to finally be meeting the girl I am sharing a fairy tale with.” He says with a smirk, “You know, the one that’ll get killed by,” He raised his hands and did air-quotes,” ‘accident’.” When no-one filled the silence, he carried on. “Of course, I didn’t need to meet the whole gang. But what a treat! I suppose they all wanted autographs?” His smirk grew smugger, “Well, I’ll certainly fulfil your wish. You can take it right with you to the grave.”
“If you kill us, we won’t fight! We will be united to our last breath, and nothing you can say will change that!” Mo spat at him.
“Oh, no no, you’ve got the wrong end of the stick, little missy. No, I’m not going to kill you,” His voice turned hard as he pointed at me, “She is,”.
Confusion rattles in my bones. Rose killing us? Yeah right. She’s the one who didn’t want to go into the Trial so she didn’t have to injure anybody. And if Miso thinks he can force her into doing it, well, then I’m afraid he’s wrong. Really wrong. Really really wrong. Super really really really absolutely no doubt about it wrong. Just the thought of it… well that’s laughable. He really underestimates people, doesn’t he? But then I think of the writing on the desk. Always one step ahead. What is his plan? What was he searching for? Has he got it? Does he think we have it? Do we? And that’s assuming it was even him that wrecked Sophie’s office. I’m pretty sure it was, I mean, who else would? Does he have a side-kick? How would he? All these thoughts swirl round in my head as I look at the hateful man laughing to himself in front of us. He obviously loves watching our confusion. Suddenly Rose makes a brave move. She starts laughing hysterically, so much that it looks like she can’t breathe. Just the sight of her giggling, no matter how scared I am, sets me off too. Soon, Jason has joined in, and even Lola is smirking like she’s trying not to laugh. Miso’s face turns cold. He glares at us and checks an invisible watch. All at once, the laughter dies, the flames of the fire inside of me lying in ashes, no longer giving me the urge to laugh. Silence strides into the room, and the gloom returns. Miso makes no move, says no words, he just looks forward, seemingly lost in a daze. Somewhere in the Endless Woods, a wolf howls. Hours might of passed, or maybe it was only a few minutes. I watch my arms drain of any returning colour, hoping someone will make the first move. Someone does, but no-one we know.
A brick must have dropped in my stomach. I put my hands to my head, wishing desperately to wake up. When I look up, I haven’t moved. This can’t be real, it’s not possible. NO NO NO NO NO NO NO. Please say I’m asleep, please please please please. I refuse to accept this, I saw him die and no-one can very well come back to life, can they? That’s it, sorted, no more questions about it. So why is he standing in front of me? The man who crushed my emotions, killed my dreams, hated everything in sight.
Why is my dad here?
I woke in a pool of blood. I was still lying in the foyer, dark and musty. Thinking how unusual for Dean Sophie’s school to be musty, I got up and brushed myself down. The strange thing was, I couldn’t find a wound. That means I must of been lying in someone else’s blood. That is freaky. Who’s was it? There was a trail snaking up the stairs and into Sophie’s office, as if someone had been bleeding profusely as they walked up. It wasn’t there when I fell. That means someone must have walked past me as I was unconscious. They must of also stood over me for a while, as there is a large puddle where I was lying. Then it hit me. Rose. They must be in the building. Shemust be in the building. But the building isn’t safe. I’ve never met him. But he’s here. I’ve had visions of him, encased in darkness but still looming over me, threatening to kill. Quick as a flash, I shot up the stairs, knowing everyone I’ve met at this school, these schools, is in danger. The office was in a state. It looked as if someone had come in, turned it upside down and left again. The desk had been cleared, like someone had come in to make a plan. There was some pieces of parchment curled up there, with two different types of handwriting. Unfolding them, I found one was loopy and neat, but still had an Evil touch to it, like the person whom it belonged to was a bit of both. The other was a barely-readable scrawl, and I had to strain my eyes to understand it. For some reason, it looked extremely familiar. Then the second wave of realisation hit me. Jason. That means the other one was Lola’s. I couldn’t believe she was with them. I didn’t stop to wonder why Rosetta’s nor Mo’s was there, but I did look at what they’d written.
Climb up the bridge, underneath That was Jason.
Could run, or maybe go slow? Lola. The script went on like this, and many ideas were listed. Then I noticed a tiny bit of writing near the bottom of the scroll, reading:
If anyone’s reading this, send help or just help yourself. We’ll be in the School Master’s Tower. Hopefully.
That must have been Rose. Well at least I knew where they were now. This just confirmed my fear of danger. I had to help them. Fast. But was I ready?
Imagine if my time at school was normal. That would be lovely. But no. I have to face threat after threat, it sounds silly, but it’s kind of becoming boring. I honestly don’t see why I’m so special. It’s almost flattering that people choose out of everyone in this world to hurt me, to kill me, to seek revenge on me. But I say almost because I hate it. Double triple super duper hate it. I’m so happy to be a part of this world, don’t get me wrong. But, dude, do you really have to try and kill me every step I take? I have friends. I have a boyfriend. I have an ex-archenemy. That is right. But, honestly, I just feel exhausted. This world must work different to mine, because I am injured, dangerously injured, and I’m facing a guy who wants to kill me, two guys who want to kill me. I should be in bed! I know I almost asked for this, yes I did, but I wasn’t expecting to have everything I’m not expecting thrown at me all at once. I’m still processing the fact that Lola’s meant to be my friend now! I shouldn’t complain, I love adventures and all that. However, there is a certain point of not being able to take anymore, and that line has been crossed. So when Victor walks in, I don’t cry or scream or faint, I just sigh. It’s not unexpected anymore. He smirks- it’s obvious he thinks he’s come up with a really clever plan and that I’ll be shocked and defeated, knowing my fate. Instead, I roll my eyes. He ignores this.
“What a treat!” he said in a sarcastic tone, “My darling Lola and the one I took for my own, Rosetta, both in one room! And they’ve brought their friends too! Honestly, I wasn’t expecting a show, but if you’re prepared………” his face hardened, every muscle in it thumping hard, “,too bad.”
“Yes, Victor, I was excited to spoil you with this, I’m sure this’ll be the right highlight of your day! Why, it’s probably the best thing that’s happened to you in a long time.” Miso joined in. Victor resumed his happy manner,
“Of course, this is probably the best thing that’s happened to me ever!” he thought for a moment, then added, “Except for darling Lola’s birth, course.” Lola bursted.
“W…w…what? I saw you die!” she exclaimed. Victor just smiled.
“Oh, Lola, you never were the brightest star in the sky, were you? I never died, no, quite the opposite, I came here instead. I was so proud when I heard you came to this school! Not so much when you were put in Good, but you put a right to that wrong, didn’t you? You’re Evil now, and I forgive you for not getting our sweetheart Rosetta here the first time, you can just do it now, can’t you? Lola, it’s time to live up to your ancestry, to live up to me, to put a stop to this girls heart. You know how, don’t you? You don’t need weapons, your talent is all we need to destroy Rosetta. Isn’t it?” Victor said, continuing with fake contentment.
“No! M..my talent can’t do that! And I wouldn’t kill Rosetta anyway, she not my enemy anymore.” Lola told her father.
“Why, Lola, it can! But if you don’t want to, that’s okay, have it your way,” his face hardened again, “and I’ll make you kill her, them and yourself.” Lola just shook her head angrily. Victor turned to me,
“Oh, Rosetta, you’ll never make it out of here. How sad. I would of chose a better setting myself but Miso here insists this is the best place for your death. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see!” the smile he gave me made me feel sick, and I realised how tired I was. My knees buckled and I waited for the inevitable. There was no way out of this.
“Oh, what a pity, I was informed of your terrible state, I had no idea it was this bad though, poor thing.” Miso taunts Rose, looking down his nose at her. This makes me so mad, it’s hard to breath as all my focus is on not crying out. It’s one thing being sarcastic, but it’s another thing acting like you are superior to someone just because they show weakness. Weakness can be a great strength if you think about it for long enough. But these people don’t, because they’re too busy sitting on their imaginary thrones, feeling smug at every stupid little idea they come up with. I have no problem with Evil, it’s just another cause some people choose to fight for- and that’s the balance of the Woods. But these people don’t seem to be fighting for any cause, they just seem centred around the foundations of hate that they’ve dug for themselves. Only Rose and Lola seem to know who this ‘Victor’ is, I just know he said something about Lola being his……..Wait. That’s him? That’s the one that Rose was made to fear the second her mother died, and the one who crushed all her hopes and dreams. Wow. This is not how I imagined him. His attention has moved to Lola, and he makes sure a faux smile is on his face before speaking.
“Lola. You have been brought up for a reason. This is that reason. So, I’ll ask you again. Will you help us kill Rosetta?” He kicks Rose when saying her name, which makes my lip twitch. These people! Who do they think they are?
“Course not! Why would my opinion change in five minutes?” she spits back at her father.
Miso purses his lips and holds up a piece of parchment. I don’t question it particularly, until I see the splash of red ink at the top. That’s what he was looing for!.
“Oh Lola, you do realise we’ve got all the information we need about you to hand?” he smirks, waving the piece of paper around. I assume that must be her file. Every child in the woods has one at this school. Lola grimaces.
“I do, but it won’t help you!”
“Oh, but your power can.” Victor replies, smugness written all over his face.
“I’M NOT HELPING YOU!” she roars back.
“I thought we’d have to do it the hard way. It’s a shame, really, the power always works better when used by the owner, but I suppose it’s better than nothing.” Miso says, almost to himself.
“Why, yes. You may think this file can’t help us, but there you’d be mistaken. You see, this here piece of paper holds the key on how to manipulate your power. I, of course, have also been gifted with it but yours is the one we need.” Victor states. Rose stirs from her place of stillness and into an almost standing position. She then asks, “What power?”
“Silly me, of course you wouldn’t know. My darling Lola-” (Lola gags) “- has got a special talent that can help us defeat your little gang of suckers over here. It is one of the best, I have to say, what with it being mind and emotion controlling.” Victor explains in a know-it-all tone.
“Yes, but it can also be used against Evil, specifically you two as being Evil isn’t always a bad thing.” she counters. Miso just shrugs.
“Well, I guess that settles it, shall we begin acting upon ‘the hard way’” Miso says vaguely. Victor nods, his smirk widening. Immediately after, he closes his eyes and scrunches up his face with a look of extreme discomfort. After a long while, or maybe just a few seconds, he opens his eyes, though they might not be described as that anymore. The pupils have vanished and he resembles an alien with a sleek hairstyle. All of a sudden, blue wisps of smoke start coming from his eyes, all aimed in one direction. Lola. A small strand of smoke hits her squarely in the chest, and a scream escapes he mouth before her eyes close. When they open, she, too, is pupilless* and does not look human any more. Her eyes lock on Rose and she makes her way towards her, in the process scratching Jason’s face and knocking me over, not even looking in our direction as she approaches Rose. From her eyes, blue smoke billows, far stronger than Victor’s, and drift towards Rose. Sensing the danger, she tries to dodge and scramble out of the way but her injury prevents her going as fast as needed and she gets hit by a wisp. I hold my breath, hoping it wasn’t enough to hypnotise her. She screams, though it is a scarier scream than Lola’s, one that hangs in the air and replays itself over and over again in people’s heads, then returning to haunt their nightmares. Slowly, Rose’s eyes close and she falls to the floor. For a moment, everything is silent and a small hope erupts in me, Maybe she’s just unconscious? I think to myself. Then her eyes open, and there isn’t a pupil in sight. Jason and I let out identical cries of horror. Victor is the only one that looks in control. Rose heads towards the weapon shelf in the far corner of the room. Not flinching, she pulls down the sharpest sword and runs her hands across the blade. Then she positions it over her chest. This is the second time in a couple of days that I know Rose is as good as dead. Without breathing, I watch, unable to help, as she bring the blade down.
“PLEASE SAY I’M NOT TOO LATE!” comes a voice as a shadow bursts into the room, diverting Rose’s attention. As he comes into the light, I feel faint.
I have never been so happy to see Jerome in my life.
When I came to this school, I thought it would improve me.
When I came to this school, I thought I would be influenced to become the best Evil I could be.
When I came to this school, I thought I would become the greatest villain of all time.
Turns out I was wrong.
I don’t know where to start.
I arrived on a day I was happy to be leaving my family behind, and to get a life of my own. To start with, I had been cocky, maybe even a little bit arrogant. Before you ask, I’m not a boy. Neither am I a girl. I’m just The Best.
Well, it depends if you’re counting Evalia.
I don’t ever like to say I’m second best, or anything less than best. But I fear I’m second best to Evalia. And I hate her for it.
I had first seen her as we were walking down into Evil Hall. She was quite different to everyone else, with her golden bob of hair that bounced none-stop. I had thought she was one of those Evers that was brought up in a Never kingdom.
And judging one of the most dangerous people on this Earth by their looks was one of my worst weaknesses.
Because, deep down, I knew she was better than me.
But I wasn’t going to let her beat me.
Her appearance was her deadliest weapon.
And I fell for it.
She also shared a room with me, Vice 45, and I had told myself how weak she was, I had even thought I had heard her crying in bed one night. But now I’m thinking it must have been one of her victims.
I didn’t get a chance to face her until Special Talents, where we were paired up against each other. I was ready to thrash her and show her that no-one messes with Sam of Ravenbow. But I never got the chance. Because of my luck, she went first. To begin with, it looked like she wasn’t going to do anything. Then she closed her eyes and it all begun. She started floating, which I had thought was a bit ridiculous. I had thought that that would have been it. I was wrong here, too. Without warning, her eyes shot open and she dived to grab me by the throat. She dragged me into the air and the ceiling was no match for her bird-like frame.
I’d never been beaten before this.
Nor had the emotion ‘fear’ ever entered my system.
But it did this time.
And I wasn’t happy with it.
Not one bit.
So I didn’t know how to react when I felt my own blood dripping down my neck.
And seeing it on her claw.
I saw this girl in a new light.
One where I was suddenly the prey.
And this was the thought that made me attach myself to vines and pull myself to the floor again.
Because I couldn’t stand being vulnerable.
But I couldn’t stop the dreams.
We’d only had a few classes when they started so I didn’t know about them. But that wasn’t going to stop them coming. They were all similar; a fuzzy face, a claw, my blood, death. At first, there was only a hint of blood that I could taste in my mouth, so I convinced myself that it was an illusion. But then the face stopped being fuzzy, and the blood stopped becoming just a taste.
The Nemesis Dreams were real.
And I was a Nemesis to a girl who I feared.
And I did, even though you would have to kill me before I’d admit it.
But this is only the start.
This was before the Trial by Tale.
I had scored relatively good ranks, so of course I was going in. But I still couldn’t understand how I could have a Nemesis from the same school. But soon that was pushed from my mind.
Because that’s when I met Lola.
And that’s when she moved to my school.
In my room.
And suddenly the first best went to third.
But one day, to my utmost relief, she vanished. And I was left again with Evalia. And my Nemesis Dreams.
One night, I just gave up sleeping. I had heard a big commotion. Huge. But I was the only one to go and see what caused it. The bravest Never, I called myself. The stupidest Never, others called me. On the foot of the stairs, lay Jerome, the other Ever who turned Evil.
The Never who was Good.
Or is it: The Ever who became Evil?
The boy who had managed to speak to me without ending up dead.
It was a small conversation, but it meant more than I can stress.
“Why haven’t you spoken a word, since, well ever?” he said, approaching me with a stupid smile on his face. I didn’t answer, hoping he would go away. He didn’t.
“Because I see no reason to waste my breath having a conversation with someone I am superior to.” I said, finally deciding I didn’t have a choice.
“Do you know what happened to Lola?” he asked next.
“I couldn’t care less.”
“Do you know who Rosetta is?”
Some pretty Ever you have a crush on?”
“I do not!” he defended, though he burned red.
“As I say, I am superior to you so this conversation means nothing to me.” I paused then added, ” I am also a better liar.”
“Do you know who Jason is?”
“Ummm, let’s see, the person dating your crush?”
“I do not like her! But yes. And he’s my brother.”
“Well, if you’ve come to me for relationship advice, you won’t get any.” I tell him, starting to walk away.
“I’m not!” I turned around. A smile crossed his lips, “I was wondering if you have any information on Miso.”
Wow, congratulations if you made it to the end! Hope you liked it and thanks for reading!
(okay, so I didn’t read it). What?! I’m in a rush! (plus, I’m supposed to be doing my maths homework.
yay, finally made it to the end. I LOVE this. please update soon!!