Don't Say A Word.

Isabelle York is an extraordinary girl, with a flaw that sets her apart.


3. Give Me Therapy.

Isabelle sighed as she stared at the wall opposite the head teacher's office, the photos plastered to the wall used to being scruitinsed by students in trouble or curious about one thing or another. The chair she sat on practically stank of sweat from where nervous children had sat, clutching at the arms or the cushion beneath their buttocks, wiping the sweat from their palms on the rough blue fabric. Georgina was sat beside her, studying her chipped nail varnish and her bruised knuckles that were curled, shaking, over her palm. Her hair was mussed, short layers sticking out like the sides of the head of an emperor penguin.

The muffled voices of Anna and Abigail and the head teacher reached their ears; wails of dignation from the girls and stern words in an annoyed tone came from the middle-aged male teacher. The next thing they knew, they were getting evil glares from Anna and a tearful stare from Abigail, their ponytails flopping as they stalked off as well as an extremely small girl would be able to without looking like a dwarf on its way to dig in a mine.

The next moment hung in the air; the silence from the other side of the door and the second and a half of eye contact between the two sisters slowly merged into a minute, blue eyes meeting brown, nervous lips bitten until they were almost drawing blood. Then Georgina broke the stare half a second before the door opened.

The head teacher, Mr Weirs, was a tall, greying man with frown lines that creased into his eyebrows, giving him a slight resemblance to a Shar Pei. His steely blue eyes softened when they landed on Isabelle, focusing on the scar before catching himself and giving her a slight sympathetic smile. He beckoned to them to follow him, and they stepped into his office with weak knees. The office smelled of incense, which was being burned by the window, undoubtedly to hide the scent of cigarettes and food. He sat at his cheap wooden desk and tapped a few keys on his laptop, acting as if they weren't in the room. Isabelle stole a glance at Georgina, who had made an attempt to flatten her hair and was once again studying her nails, picking at the purple gloss that was flaking in small pieces to the carpet.

'So, girls,' Weirs looked Georgina up and down, before fixating on Isabelle. 'I understand that this was not your fault.'

'Damn right,' Georgina muttered under her breath. Weirs pretended to ingnore her, but Isabelle saw his shoulders tense slightly. 'What do you want, then, Sir?'

Her poilteness unnerved him. 'I want.. To offer some school counselling to you two. I understand that your operation was traumatic, Isabelle, and that needing to cope with such a thing when something is happening to someone so direct to you, Georgina, is the worst thing to happen when you're already so troubled at school,' he smirked, and Isabelle knew that he was talking about Georgina's second strike. 'It is compulsory, but you can cancel it if you have permission from your parents, who agree with me.'

Isabelle nodded with much unspoken doubt in her mind. Therapy. Counselling. How would she communicate with someone from the school, whom were entirely against learning sign language, when they had no idea what she was saying? Surely writing on a whiteboard for an hour would be too much effort for both her and whomever was giving her some 'well-needed' counselling?

'I forgot to mention, this will be a peer-run counselling session.' A pang in Isabelle's chest physically hurt.

She signed to Georgina slowly, who translated.

'Who would be counselling Isabelle?'

'We have a new student who is willing to help,' Weirs replied, flicking through paper on his desk. 'A new, deaf student. A boy called Rhys.'

Isabelle's heart pumped, and Georgina glanced at her, suddenly smiling. Isabelle nodded, and Georgina said; 'That would be fine, Sir. If there's not anything else, we should really be getting back to lesson...'

They were dismissed, smiling. It was certain that their first lesson of the day would be missed.

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