Lucid

~The Sequel to 'Little British Girl~
- Decide which side your on -
Three and a half month after Luci kidnapped her birth father, Xander Moore, Elia and her friends are on the run. Both north and south are engulfed in complete and utter chaos, and the resistance and the rebellium are gaining power through an alliance. Both sides want them out of the way, and they have nowhere to be, nowhere where they belong. The four friends must choose a side, the alliance, or the government, a decision that will forever haunt them all.
Nothing is certain, nothing is safe, nothing is lucid.

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11. Chapter 11

“Elia? Elia, where are you? It’s time for school! Enough of your games...come out and get ready, please…” Mum called out, rushing around the house, opening cupboard doors and kneeling down to look under tables, desperately searching for me. I have to admit, it was a little childish of a 11 year old girl to be playing a one-sided game of hide and seek the morning before she started secondary school, but I didn’t really care. I didn’t want to go.

I sat hunched up behind the sofa, my legs close to my chest, and my head in my hands. Why couldn’t she see things from my perspective? Why did she always have to be so bossy- so headstrong. At the end of primary school I was offered a place at the most prestigious spanish school in New London, the same one my friend Rebecca was going to with her other friends. For a moment I actually thought I’d be able to spend more time with my old friend, just like I used to...but then my mum went and ruined everything, shredding the letter and sending me off to some mediocre english school, the same one she went to when she was my age. She didn’t care what I wanted, she did what she believed was best, telling me how changing school systems can damage a child’s education, or something like that, and sending me off to the uniform shop to get all dressed up in my new uniform, but not the new uniform I wanted to wear…

“There you are! Come on, enough of this nonsense, get up and get to school.” She found me at last, heaving me up and dusting the grime that had gathered on my skirt off me, before giving me a light shove in the direction of the front door. I turned around to beg with her one more time.

“If you loved me you wouldn’t make me do this...you’d listen to me, you’d let me do what I want to do.”

“It’s because I love you that I am doing this,” my mum remained firm with me, “Trust me Elia, this is what’s best for you.”

Sat on the edge of my mattress, gazing out at nothing in particular, I let my memories come back to me. Sure, my mother sending me off to a school I didn’t want to go to wasn’t nearly as bad as Beverly leaving us all for dead, but it was the best comparison my basic mind could come up with. My mum sent me to the english school because she thought it was what I needed, Beverly turned her back on Max because she thought it was what she needed. I suppose all the bad decisions my mum made she made for me, even sending me to the North...in her own twisted way she thought it was a good idea. In this instance, she did make a pretty good decision. I did well at the english school, I made some good friends, got good grades, and left with a good future ahead of me...I probably would have gotten the same outcome at the spanish school too, perhaps even better, but I’ll never really know what would have happened if she had listened to my opinion all those years ago.

I was so stubborn back then.

Even when my mum had sent me off to the english school, I still resisted. Getting detentions and sanctions and bunking off class, all to get her attention so she’d let me go to the spanish school with Rebecca. Year seven was a troublesome year for me.

“Do you understand the seriosity of your actions Elia?” Ms Walkers, my rabbit-toothed head of year loomed over me, leaning over her desk to talk down at me.

“Yes Ms Walkers.” I chanted, sighing out my words. I wasn’t really paying attention, I was too distracted by the rice puff in hair, stuck to her greasy strands like it was glued there. There always seemed to be stray things in Ms Walkers’s hair, rice puffs, streamers, dried up bits of glue...even a chocolate button.

“It is unacceptable, I repeat, unacceptable, to roll out all the loo roll and spread it across the locker room floor.” She warned me, “You’ll need to write a detailed letter of apology to the caretaker to make up for it, do you understand?”

“Yes Ms Walkers.” I repeated, beginning to get a bit bored, my eyes wandering around the room to stare at all the ‘motivating’ posters up in her office.

“Aside from that, since nobody was hurt, your only other punishment is a week's worth of lunchtime detentions. Understood?”

“Yes Ms Walters.” I grumbled, starting to get annoyed...did she really have to take this long just to tell me that I had a few detentions and a letter to write?

“Okay then, you are dismissed, but I will be calling your mother about this.”

Mum was not happy with me, but she wasn’t surprised either. The loo roll stunt was my sixth since I started the school, I was beginning to build up a reputation as a troublemaker. I was glad, thinking that sooner or later they’d kick me out and I’d get to go to spanish school.

But they didn’t.

I realised soon enough that no matter what I did I was stuck with that school and Ms Walters until I left in five years time. Each time I pulled a prank they’d blame it on behavioural problems, stress, the fact that I was raised by a single parent...no matter what I did, they let me get away with it. I suppose I was lucky in that respect, though I felt very unlucky at the time. Anyway, I cleaned up my act going into year eight, and before long people forgot all about my rough start. I grew to accept the english school, I even went so far then after to grow to enjoy my time there. I still saw Rebecca at weekends, and she seemed happy enough without me at spanish school too. So, maybe, my mum had been right all those years ago after all…

“Can I sit here?” I’m surprised to be interrupted from my daydreams by none other than Max, the last person I’d expect to be in the mood for talking right now.

“Um, sure.” I nod, moving along a bit to give him more room.

“You had that face on again...the one you make when you’re lost in thought.” Max tells me, “What were you thinking about?”

“My mum.” I confess.

“Same.” Max mutters, shaking his head, “I can’t believe she- well I didn’t expect her to..to…”

“It’s okay,” I place my arm over his shoulders, “Don’t think about her, she’s not worth crying over.”

“I can’t help it…” He trails off, his eyes lost as his mind ventures deep into his thoughts and memories. “It’s all because of that stupid mission so many years ago, I mean it wasn’t even really my fault, I just took all the blame. Do you know that-? Never mind, it doesn’t matter now anyway.” He rambles on, half-talking to me, half-talking to himself.

“Know what?” I pick up on something he said.

“Hm?”

“You said ‘Do you know that-? Never mind, it doesn’t matter now anyway” I recite.

“Did I? I was just ranting, ignore me.” Max dodges the question. He’s a terrible liar. Something is definitely bothering him, something about his failed mission years ago...something nobody else knows. “So, what are we gonna do now?” He tactfully changes the subject before I can dig any deeper.

“Go to California I suppose, to try and find my dad. If we get caught, we get caught. If we don’t, we don’t. There’s not much else we can do.” I shrug, unenthusiastic about our future.

“I suppose you’re right.” Max sighs, staring down at the ground. This must be really hard for him, first Luci makes it nearly-impossible for us to get to California, then his own mother turns her back on him. All I can do is hope that, like going to english school, everything will work out okay in the end.

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