2. Breaking rules
We finish school the next day and I am about to set off down the road to our house, when Avanna grabs my arm and pulls me into a side street.
"What the-" I loudly begin before she puts her palm over my mouth, she lifts a finger to her lips, the universal sign for silence.
"We're going to see Odin," she whispers, a cunning grin on her face.
"But we’re not allowed to!" I say "You're not meant to associate with lowlanders."
"You want to see him or not?" She retaliates, and I do.
We get to the lowlands and try to blend in, lowering our heads and not looking anyone in the eye, we copy their posture and finally we find Odin, kneeling, washing clothes in a bucket outside a makeshift house, like the sort we’d seen on TV.
I tap him on the shoulder.
"What do you want?" he grumbles, not bothering to turn round.
I open my mouth to speak, but Avanna, being the one with attitude, says,
"Well we thought we’d just casually risk our lives to come and see you, but if you’re not interested..."
He immediately jumps up and gives her a hug, then smiles at me. He looks tired with dark circles under his eyes.
Avanna continues her comment, "If you do still want to be friends, we’re open to breaking the law."
"Of course I still want to be friends," he gestures around, "As long as you don’t mind this."
"I’m sure we can put up with it," I spoke for both of us.
"Shall we bring some food tomorrow? It looks like there’s a shortage here," Avanna asks.
"There isn’t much at all, it was half a piece of bread for breakfast today, and no lunch."
"Gosh! You must be starving!" Avanna says.
"Yupp, but I’ll live," Odin jokes.
Later, Avanna checks her watch.
"We have to go! What will mum say? We’ll have been gone for almost two hours!" she says.
"It’s okay, the book club is always on for two hours after school, and Mum knows what I’m like," I say, already prepared.
At this she turns to Odin and shakes her head at me. "And we'll say you've been hanging out with Persephone and Infinity," I finished.
"She is always one step ahead!" she says with a smile to Odin.
"We still need to head home, let’s go," I remind Avanna.
We bid goodbye to Odin and head back up.