The White Opera

In a world that’s falling apart, Lillia Jane seeks to find the light. Dancing is her soul and passion, but it isn’t always the answer to her problems. She witnessed the murder of her best friend Sophie and won’t be forgetting the feeling of isolation any time soon. Lillia’s parents have moved to Queensland for the summer so now it’s just her and her older brother Brian, as they embark on an amazing adventure through Sydney Australia.


4. Sydney, Australia


Two days pass and we are either spending hours and hours on the road, or temporarily staying in a hotel for the night. I was asleep in the backseat of Tia’s car when I heard Brian give a small sound of relief. “We’re here!” he says as our car passes slowly over the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The sight is almost beautiful. The Opera House is located to our left, taller than I had anticipated. The blue water is crystal clear, framing the city below perfectly. The tall buildings are visible from afar. Brian opens the sunroof and to my great surprise, when I look up, I can see people climbing the very top of the bridge. The locals shopping, going to the park for a Sunday outing or rushing out of the house to meet a friend. The place was comfortable and beautiful.

Boats of all kinds float across the river while planes soar through the air. The place is alive with life. Everywhere you turn, something is happening. People tanning on Bondi Beach or flying a kite. My cramps and back pains have increased even more over our two days on the road, so when we park the car and jump out, everything feels 100 times better.

“So where are we staying?” I ask.

“Over there according to this brochure.” Brian replies, he points towards a Hotel across the road. “Do we have enough money to stay there for 2 weeks?” I ask, knowing how expensive hotels can get.

“I drew some money out of our accounts when you were sleeping. We should have around $900 now.” I personally don’t think that will last, but we can give it a go I guess. At some point, someone is going to have to find a way to earn a bit of money while we stay here.

We grab our luggage and move into the reception area. Sitting at the desk is a middle-aged woman with sagged skin and grey hair. It’s kind of obvious that she has tried and failed to die her hair blond. Her cracked green painted nails move surprisingly fast across the keyboard.

“Hello?” she asks in a rather bored manner.

“Um hey. We would like to book a room for a couple of weeks. Could you please confirm the cost of a fourteen day stay?” Brian asks nervously. This was his first time staying somewhere without our parents. The lady started typing in some figures and then replied, “$400.”

“That’s all?” I blurt out, everyone turns and looks at me, “Don’t be rude.” my brother says into my ear.

Tia thanks the old woman as we grab our things and head upstairs to our room. I can see why the cost is so low for only two weeks. The curtains are tattered and thin, the bed creaks every time someone dares move a muscle, the carpet has a mouldy smell and the shower water is never hot.

“Do we have to stay here?” I ask, already knowing the answer, “Well this is freaking perfect isn’t it?” once again, I am ignored. I sigh and fall onto my bed which immediately reacts to my weight. “I think we should probably get some fresh air.” remarks Tia, “It smells in here.” So after dumping everything in the room, we escape the dull atmosphere.

“Can we get a boost juice?” I ask, but no one listens, I have no one to talk to anymore. So instead of getting a juice, we take a walk to the nearest park. As much as I hate human contact at the moment, being outside is way better than being trapped in that crappy hotel. “Hey you look a little down. You could do with a little do up!” she points towards a chemist where a row of coloured lip glosses and foundations stand neatly in the window. Is she calling me ugly?

Although, I have to admit, I haven’t worn any makeup since Sophie passed.

I stand still and let a memory of that day control me:

“This colour would look pretty on you” Sophie suggested, “Try it on!” her voice was calming, she handed me a coral pink blush. “Thanks!” I said, astounded that she would even give me one of her blushes. “No probs.” Sophie was the second most popular girl of the 10th grade and she didn’t miss an opportunity to glamour up. “When is your next ballet recital Lil?” she asked, just remembering that I had a big concert coming up. “In five weeks, but you don’t have to come. There are barely any seats left anyway.”

“Of course I want to come! You’re my absolute BFF!” she emerged into deep concentration as she applied her 2nd coat of mascara. I looked at her thinking that I was probably the luckiest person in the world to have a friend like Sophie. Once we were done applying our makeup, we moved into the kitchen and snack on mum’s leftover sandwiches. “Hey Master Chef is on in 5 minutes. Wanna go watch it?” I asked, looking for something to do, “Yeah whatever.” Sophie replied distractedly.

“LILLIA!” it was Brian, “What?” I ask snapping out of my day dream.

“Where you listening?”

“Not Really, why?”

“We are going to try and make some friends this trip. Now I know that after what happened you may not feel like interacting but please try.” I grunt and wave my hand dismissively. Like I really want to do that. When night covers the city, we start heading back to the hotel. My mind is swimming when I get into bed. I scrunch up my nose at the sound of the loud springs in the bed.

Sophie and I had no idea what was about to happen that day. The results weren’t that nice either, a dead best friend and me suffering from depression. –It’s a great combination.

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