Keep Calm and Disillusion

Wondering why the world didn't end in 2012? Well it did. You just don't of know it. I
f you're reading this now, it means we've saved humanity.
Or at least you.
So who are we? We're just a couple of average Australians, hoping to save the world and win a normal future. But not just hoping - no,we're fighting.
Because in a world where rejecting reality can enslave you to invaders, we refuse to dream.

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4. Chapter Four: Yeti – DNM ft. Westley

 

Westley was very talkative that night, as if he were trying to avoid the happenings of the previous day – which he obviously was. Fortunately for him, everyone was distracted by his seeming victory, which honestly did make Jacob and I feel a little sick. Westley’s sudden popularity was a situation I tired of quickly, as I realised this was the second night in a row Westley had been the centre of attention. In fact, he was so much the centre of attention that Isaac came and spoke to me.

                ‘Did you hear about last night?’ Was the first thing he said, and I sighed.

                ‘Who didn’t, Isaac?’ In truth, I didn’t really want to speak to him, though at the same time I did, because he was so easy to talk to.

                After about ten minutes of our frog domination conversation, I realised I was actually tired, and decided to go to bed. I dismissed myself politely and left Isaac alone and rather bored.

                The girls’ cabins were a long way away from the main hall, somewhere near the beginning of the bush; and – while I hated going to bed – I found I looked forward to it more and more with every step.

                ‘Yeti!’ A voice called out, and I saw it was Otar. Beside him was Westley, the two of them being a short way away from a much larger group of people. ‘Impromptu bush walk. Wanna come?’

                I really didn’t, and I doubted anyone actually wanted me to be there. Otar was just being typically friendly. I opened my mouth to say no, but as I did Westley shook his head playfully.

                ‘Come on, Maryetti.’ He teased. ‘It can’t be past your bed time yet.’ And he looked at me pleadingly.

                Growling within (because how could I say no to the poor guy?), I gave up my sleeping plans and followed the large group.

                As the walk progressed, I found myself walking slower and slower, until the bulk of the bushwalkers were so far away I couldn’t even hear them speaking anymore. I began to feel a little lonely and abandoned, so I picked up the pace.

                Why had Westley even wanted me to come? It wasn’t like he was talking to me. Here I was, all alone in the dark night…

                The gorgeous, dark night. It was so quiet, and everything was so still. There was the occasional hoot of an owl, maybe a bat flying by… there were several bats flying in the light of the moon, which was eerily beautiful. But that was all. It was just the nocturnal creatures and me, alone in the dark, warm night.

                ‘How did you do it?’

                I jumped and turned around in fright. Then, a little crossly, I cried, ‘Westley! I didn’t know you were there.’

                ‘Well I am.’ Westley returned, grinning evilly – a good sign.

                Sighing, I addressed his question. ‘How did I do what?’

                He paused before replying, and I felt relieved to note my eyes were finally adjusting to the dark. The dam was to the right, the moonlight shimmering on it delicately, lighting up our surroundings and the faces of those on the walk.

                I faced WD again, and took in his peculiar features illuminated by the dim light. He had gone quiet for a reason; I could tell by his face if he spoke to quickly he would cry. Because he didn’t want to be talking to me on this potentially romantic walk. He wanted to be with her.

                Pathetic, considering she was fifteen.

                ‘How did you convince Jacob to let me win?’

                I laughed at once, the question took me back so extensively. ‘I didn’t.’ I was sure to reply. ‘He came up with the idea himself. I was ready to thrash you good and proper, Mr. drama-king.’ I turned my face upwards to him, beaming, reassuring him I was joking (even if there was some truth in it), and was relieved when he slowly grinned back at me.

                ‘I’m sorry about all this.’ He responded brightly. ‘I didn’t mean to cause all these problems.’

                ‘Yeah. You didn’t really think any of that through did you?’

                Westley took a deep breath before replying. ‘It went better in my head. I didn’t expect things to go so pear shaped.’

                ‘I can’t say I did either.’

                ‘But I did think it through.’ He continued, kicking a pebble and suddenly becoming very talkative. ‘I even spoke to dad about it.’

                My eyes widened, as did my smile, and I jumped a little in excitement. ‘You did what?!’

                ‘I asked dad whether he thought it was a good idea or not – 4 months ago now. He warned me something like this could happen, and tried to tell me a comforting story in advance. It’s….’ He gulped and gasped a little for air. ‘….not really a very comforting story at all actually.’

                Here he began monologuing, which I hadn’t expected at all.

                ‘See, mum and dad knew each other for years before they started going out, and – initially – mum rejected dad for two whole years. Two whole years! But in the end she gave up, because of his persistency. The only problem I have now is that Nikki wasn’t exactly nice about the rejection, unlike mum was to dad. Things don’t seem to be looking up.’

                He seemed to stop here, so I cut in. ‘You’re not going to ask her again are you?’

                ‘Ask her what?’ Westley returned miserably. Then, smiling again (though his eyes did not), he continued. ‘I’d be curious to know what you think I asked, actually. What do you think happened?’

                I sighed and shook my head. ‘I don’t have a clue, W, but something tells me it wasn’t pretty.’

                ‘It wasn’t.’ Westley confirmed, and suddenly I knew he was going to tell me what had happened. Everything. ‘Which is why I haven’t told anybody. Even she hasn’t told anybody the full story, which is a mercy.’

                ‘You haven’t even told Isaac?’

                ‘Isaac can’t keep a secret to save himself, and he’s not that great with sympathy.’

                ‘Oh.’

                ‘Yeah. So…. I thought…. I might tell…. You.’ He turned to me, eyes pleading for a hearing, and I groaned within. This drama was ridiculous.

                ‘Fine.’ I said obligingly, adding ‘but be quick’ in my mind.

                Fortunately, Westley was quick. ‘I know Jacob hates me for all this, but he doesn’t know what Nikki said to me. Do you know what she said to me?’

                I shook my head tiredly, even though I was terribly interested.

                ‘She told me to grow up. Told me I wasn’t a man, and even if I was I was the worst possible type of one she could imagine. She said I was lazy, arrogant, argumentative, and completely clueless. She told me to go ‘find a nice girl that will be kind enough to put up with you.’ He sighed. ‘Or words to that effect.’

                There was a long pause, but I didn’t bother looking up or saying anything. I knew he’d be crying.

                ‘And the worst part is,’ he sniffed, ‘that it’s true.’

                I spoke up now, even though I agreed with much of what Nikki said in a way. The only difference was, I think I understood the heart of the problem. ‘Maybe.’ I agreed with him, which didn’t sound too nice, ‘but it’s only true because you’ve decided you can’t change.’

                Westley’s reply was prompt. ‘I can’t change.’

                I tsked, tsked motheringly. ‘See, that’s your problem. And – in a way – you don’t see half of what your problem is. No, the minute you decide to wake up to reality and start fixing it you’ll be perfectly fine. You just need to choose to face the problem and fix it.’

                ‘I can’t fix it.’ He said again, this time more testily.

                ‘That’s why you can’t.’ I said, equally firmly. ‘And that’s why she said those things to you. That’s why everyone says you’re lazily and stupid, even though you’re perfectly intelligent. W, do yourself a favour and fix the problem.’

                Westley said nothing now, but seemed calmer. That was good, because it meant he’d taken my words exactly as I’d wanted him to. They were meant to encourage, not tear him down.

                ‘You have issues too.’ He suddenly blurted, though I really should have expected that. Just because he knew I wasn’t trying to be mean didn’t mean he wasn’t hurt. I waited for the long list of issues I had to come out, but it never came. Westley bit his tongue and walked on in silence.

                After ten minutes had passed, he changed the topic completely, and we began talking about random things. Things a little more meaningful than what I discussed with Isaac, but still pretty pointless.

I found myself studying his face carefully as we walked, noting his sullen countenance. He was tall, dark…and … I suppose handsome. I’m just a little reluctant to say that because he’s going to see this on the internet… (Jacob, stop laughing and whistling)….but… well, he is good looking at times. He has nice eyes I guess, and – like I said – he’s tall, and dark too, so I’ve heard he could play Superman. But I don’t know… I don’t want to push that too far. Most people wouldn’t say he’s gorgeous.

                I wouldn’t say it either, Jacob!

 I was surprised when, half way through his monologue, Westley exclaimed, ‘why am I telling you all this?! I don’t need anything to be repeated!’

                I certainly hadn’t considered any of the rubbish he’d been telling me (including his terrible fear of mice) to be secret. But apparently he did, in which case he was probably stressing out right now.

                Yet, looking up, I saw he was grinning from ear to ear – completely and utterly happy.

*

I couldn’t shut Westley up after that, even right up to afternoon tea the next day. I was keenly aware of Jacob glaring at me more and more as the day progressed, but I could hardly blame him. After all, he didn’t know about our conversation, and I couldn’t tell him, as W had specifically said, ‘don’t you dare’, at the end of it all. I couldn’t even mention his secret fear of mice.

                (And just in case you were wondering, Jacob, I did attain his special permission to record all this for historical purposes. Honestly, you must think I’m a traitor).

                We had a lot of free time that day, and I was beginning to wonder whether I’d spend all of it listening to Westley’s chatter. Not that I particularly minded – it was nice not to have to labour to speak to someone – but it was beginning to look bad. Almost as bad as Isaac and I… perhaps even worse.

                ‘Let’s play cards.’ Jacob suggested eventually, being our usual bossy ringleader. ‘We can go to the rec. hall, where it’s empty.’

                This temporarily stopped Westley from speaking.

                The others agreed to do so – even Nikki, but that was probably so she could annoy Westley (who honestly seemed unaware of her existence he kept on talking so much). Thus, we soon found ourselves shut in an isolated room with our small band of friends.

                ‘Did anyone invite Isaac?’ Justin asked (or squealed). He quite looked up to the extremely tall young man, and was frequently upset when he chose to be popular rather than spend time with us.

                ‘Yes.’ Maddy replied brightly. ‘He said he might come.’

                ‘Right, so Isaac’s not coming,’ Jacob concluded, dealing the cards.

                Thomas sighed and went to lock the door, making Westley zelver (yes, this annoying facial expression called a zelve, Jacob, is quite characteristic of W) dramatically. ‘Why did you do that?’ He asked.

                Thomas shrugged. ‘Well, you know, the world’s meant to end today, being 2012 and all, so I figured I’d lock the door in case there was a zombie apocalypse.’            

                I think I was the only one who laughed at that.

                Jacob turned to Westley and began bossing him round. ‘Westley, you have to go first.’

                The older brother frowned. ‘Why me?’

                ‘Cos I said so.’

                ‘He doesn’t need your charity.’ Nikki muttered under her breath, obviously understanding why Darcy was trying to be nice.

                ‘It’s not charity.’ Jacob replied frustratedly – tiredly.

                Westley decided to be kind and just play, so he made the first move.

                ‘Thanks Jacob.’ He muttered under his breath eventually. ‘About the flag thing.’

                Jacob shifted uncomfortably. ‘Yeti made me do it.’

                I’d already told Westley the full story though, so he knew it was a half-lie.

                I expected things to be very awkward between Nikki and Westley, but they weren’t; primarily because Westley insisted on acting like nothing had happened, and Nikki was feeling a little guilty for being such a gossip. I wondered if Maddy had told her off for being cruel. Maddy was good at doing things like that, and could be quite callous at the best of times.

                I was soon out of the game, so I lent on my side contentedly and stared out the large window. The Australian sun burned the Victorian hills and kissed the Australian sea: it was gorgeous. The shrubbery was primarily Australian, but there was the occasional English oak or European plant to brighten up the rugged landscape: the mix was delightful.

                Turning back to the room I was in, I found it was beautiful too. The burden of honesty bound us to each other and the kiss of secrecy sealed our friendship: it was wondrous. We were primarily Australian, but the mix of the African Hughs gave our small group a variety that was not seen anywhere else, a mix that was delightful.

                I sighed peacefully and thanked God for them all. 

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