Sam MacSimmens and Jeff Sample lived in a little town in the southern England, called Pevensey Bay. They lived a normal quiet life, with their daughter Hope and her older brother Rory. It was Sunday, and over the horizon, the sun was just visible. In the smallest bedroom in the house, slept Rory, with his curtains pulled tight in front of the window and his sheets over his head, such as to avoid any sunlight. He had been out with some of his friends, last night. Rory’s mate Jeremy had got Rory to agree on a game of beer-bowling. This ended with Rory storming out, hand over his mouth and throwing up in the neighbors garden. It took quite a while for Rory to wake, but as he did, he groaned and tugged his sheets closer to his body. His head felt like it had been split in two with an axe, and his stomach shifted uncomfortably. He promised himself never to get so drunk ever again. He thought about last night, at least the bit he could remember. He had somehow ended up snogging Gina Marian, a positively horrid girl from his class. She was way too clingy and girly. Slowly, Rory pulled the sheets from his head, and looked at the alarm clock. It was almost noon. He groaned again, looking at the 6inch tall stack of homework just waiting to be finished. He turned his head to look at a photo on the table, standing on top of a Tolkien book; the Hobbit, which he was reading. The photo was of him at 9-year old with his two best friends, at that time. The girl had a striking resemblance to Rory. They both had emerald green eyes and flaming red hair. Their noses were sharp and they both had freckles over their noses and cheekbones. They were also rather peaky. The other boy, standing in the middle, arms round both redheads, was taller and had a kind of golden glow to his skin. His hair was blonde and curly, and his eyes were dark and warm. He smirked on the picture. Rory touched the glass. The boy, Ethan, was his best friend, and the girl, Jane, was his older sister. They had both died in an accident nearly five years ago. His thoughts were cut, when his mother walked in, with a tray.
“Sleep well boozy?” She asked, placing the tray on his bed. She sat down on the edge. ”No, not really.” he answered grumpily. She just smiled and gave him a glass. “Drink it” she ordered. Rory took the glass and sipped. He immediatly gaged and spluttered. “What the heck is this?” he asked, whipping some off his chin. “Salt-water. It’ll help with your stomach. Drink it.” She looked at him, with a firm look. Rory drank again. “Tastes like crap” he said annoyed. She just smiled and shrugged. “But the rest looks delicious” he looked at the tray, which was stuffed with food. There was a ham-sandwich, fried and boiled eggs, a large glass of milk, a cup of black coffee and a small plate of biscuits and chocolate. On the tray, were also two aspirins and a vitamin-tablet. “I should get wasted every weekend if this is what I get from it” He said, grinning. “Don’t push your luck mister” She said prodding him in the chest. He chuckled. “Well, don’t just stare at it, eat mister. You must be starving” She rose and looked at him, to assure that he started to eat. “Mommy I can’t find my vale” A young girl with shoulder-long blonde hair and bright blue eyes stood in the doorway, wearing a princess-costume, clutching a small Minnie Mouse plush-toy. Hope still seemed to be in the princess-faze at age 9. “I’ll be there in a minute okay Honey?” Sam said, running a finger down Hope’s cheek. “Okay…” Hope mumbled and dragged herself out of the room. Sam turned again to look at Rory. “Rory, I’ve spoken to the psychiatrist. He wants a meeting on Wednesday. He thinks it’s a good idea, because of the circumstances.” Rory glowered at his mother. “I’m not going to see that idiot. I don’t need him. Just because it’s Eth’s birthday, I’m not going to jump in the sea. Anyway, I promised I’d go to Jeremy’s Wednesday.” His mother’s eyes filled with tears. “I didn’t mean it like that..” he whispered grabbing her hand. She sniffled. ”I know.. I’d better help Hope with her vale. Keep eating. It’ll help” she got up, brushed his hair and waltzed out. Rory bent his head over his plate and began eating, stuffing his mouth full of sandwich. Just as he had taken a particularly large bite of his sandwich, his phone, which lay on top of the books as well, began to vibrate. He swallowed, spluttered and answered grabbed his phone, choking on the sandwich. “..’Ello..” he mumbled with his mouth filled with food. ”Rory-kins!” a loud high-pitched girls voice squealed. “Gina?” Rory asked sighing. ”Of course silly! So, how did you sleep? I slept awful my head aches so bad, i think i had way too much to drink, but it was so much fun, and i got you!” she rambled this in such speed that Rory barely caught half of what she was saying. “Um.. well” he said confused, trying to focus on what she was saying, his temples pounding painfully. “That’s really good! I mean I was kind of dreading that you’d forgot that we got together last night. So I was thinking that I maybe could come over, just to chat or something? I’d love to meet your family, I mean now that you’re my boyfriend and everything, you know.” Rory stared wildly at his phone; boyfriend?! No way in hell was he going to be Gina’s boyfriend. They had just been snogging. That did not mean that they were going to be boyfriend and girlfriend. “I’m actually not feeling very well. I think I’m just going to stay in bed today.” “Oh…” she sounded suddenly as if she was on the verge of tears. “But I guess I’ll see you Monday right?” She squealed and made kissing noises, giggled loudly and said: “You bet I’ll see you Monday Rory-kins!” Rory pressed the red button and threw the phone away in disgust. His head was still throbbing painfully. He stayed in bed for another two hours, then got up, put on a pair of shorts and a t-shirt, and walked out in the fresh sunlight, trying to get the headache away by running. Rory, who had always been very sporty, had no problem with running long distances. After all, he and the rest of the team ran 2 miles before football-practice. He ran fast down their street, away from the beach. He felt as his breath became slightly muffled, but loved the feeling of wind cooling his head. He ran along, all the way into Pevensey and all the way back, without stop. But the headache did not stop. Angry, he sped up to a sprint and finally reached the sea. A large rock stood 10 meters out in the water. His heart skipped a beat, as he walked out in the cool water, towards the rock. This had been his favorite place as a child. Sitting on that rock, feeling the breeze dry his legs and clothes. He climbed the rock and took of his soaking shoes. For what felt like hours, he sat on the rock, gazing out on the horizon, when a strong fog suddenly blinded him and felt his body fall onto the rock. Rory awoke lying limply on the rock, dry but hazy. He groaned, and held a hand to his head. It hurt worse than before. He looked at his clock, it was almost 4 in the afternoon. He had been outhere for more than two hours. He yawned tiredly and raised his head. The beach was deserted. He remembered his mom, and hurried back, carrying his still wet shoes, freezing slightly. He hid his shoes in the garage and climbed in the window of his room. He smelled distinctly like sea. “Rory, is that you?” Sam asked. ”Yeah mom” Rory said, quickly climbing into bed and pulling the sheets as high as possible, feeling the warmth defrost his body. “Oh good, you’re awake. I was just about to check on you” She smiled at him from the doorway. “Yeah, but the walk didn’t do me any good. I’m still feeling dreadful” Sam walked towards him laying a hand on his forehead. “You’re cold…” she said puzzled. “I’ll bring you a cup of tea” Rory smiled at her. “Thanks” The next morning, Rory still felt no change. His head ached worse than ever and his forehead was now burning up. He threw up twice last night, but even though he was determined to attend school today. He had an important match and the team was counting on him. Even though he wasn’t very tall or muscular, he was fast and very skilled. He pretended to feel completely mended towards his parents, and hurried to school. He had to stop halfway to hurl in a bush. He felt absolutely terrible. Suddenly in a hurry he ran, his backpack bobbing against his back. There was a large scream and in the next second Rory was almost pushed back by a low girl with blonde hair and big blue eyes. “Rory-kins!” Gina had apparently waited for him. ”Hi Gina” Rory said tiredly. “Still hung-over; Oh why sweetie” she cuddled her head in his chest. A very strong smell of perfume irritated his nostrils. ”Look Gina I have to go change for the match. We’ll talk afterwards okay?” She pouted but let go of him. “See you later Rory-kins!” She yelled after him. “Rory…-kins?” A chuckling voice asked beside him. “Shut it, Jem” Rory said and looked annoyed at Jeremy, who was smirking. Jeremy preferred to be called Jem, by friends and family. “Of all the girls in this school craving to date ‘The Rory MacSimmens’ you chose Gina…” Jem looked back at Gina who, Rory knew, was still standing where he had left her. “I didn’t choose her! She attacked me…” Jem sniggered and led them towards the changing room. “Don’t count on a very good game from me, I’m feeling terrible.” He rubbed his temples, trying to get the increasing pain to go away. “You don’t look too good either, but I don’t think that’s a new thing” He grinned again. They changed, listened to the dreadful speech from the coach, and walked out on the field. The bleachers were a sea of blue and red; the team colors. A roar of applaud deafened the air and made Rory’s head ache even worse. His legs trembled slightly as he tightened the ‘Captain’ band around his arm. Determined to make an effort, he stepped forwards and shook hands with the captain of another school, the name of which, he couldn’t remember. He almost got his hands crushed by the giant of a captain standing opposite him. Despite his aching head, he and the rest of the team played brilliantly. Not even 3 minutes into the game, Rory kicked the ball hardly from the left side and felt a leap of glee as the ball collided with the goal net. The crowd’s screams seemed to explode as he was jumped by his teammates. He seemed to glow with pride. Another five minutes and Jem had scored to 2-0. About 15 minutes into the game Rory had the ball and ran solo to score another goal. Out of nowhere, the captain came running towards him like a giant boulder. In that second his head felt like it had cracked wide open, his knees gave in, and he was hit by the captain and pushed sideways. But Rory was still standing. The pain had disappeared and he felt light as a feather. Screams of fear emerged from the bleachers and the whistle sounded. The team sprinted towards him, fear painted in their eyes. What was wrong with them? He was just fine. Jem fell down beside someone laying behind Rory. He turned to see who it was. Rory’s body lay limply on the ground, mouth open and his red hair fading to a dusty dull reddish color. Rory looked down his own body, and with a gasp of fear, saw that it was transparent. “Hi Buddy” a sad voice said behind him.