Printed from WriteWords -


by  Jono300

Posted: Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Word Count: 118501
Summary: Michael is involved in gang fights, his violent ambitions inhibit dark events Drake is anorexic Tess is obese Kathy is a suicidal smoker and alcoholic whose abusive past causes her to receive a destructive red case that effectively destroys their lives. Malorie grows up with her unhealthy, suicidal mother who is gradually dying from a disease. Realisation hits Malorie that something is missing:her father, but after 21 years of searching, death is the reason he is untraceable.


- FEAR -

- Prologue -

Being depressed can be associated with a lot of things: emotion, relationships, lies and mainly involving mental violence.
This story has many secrets that SHOULD NOT be told in my point of view, involving horrible experiences and relationships becoming fatal.
EVERYONE experiences depression at least once in their life; these are just more EXTREME examples.
Firstly, there was Michael Winters who had violent problems on the dark, dangerous unforgiving streets, which involved keeping hidden in areas the people who wander the streets claim their own.
Secondly, there was Tess Calamber who is an obese smoker and she was very confused because of her twisted past life which will be revealed later in this depressing story.
Thirdly, there was Kathy Kimberley. I’ve known her for seven years and she still puts a smile on my face. She seemed so happy, but inside … her emotions were dark and full of depression, which leaves me confounded and definitely scared for life.
Finally, there’s me and I tell lies and cannot be trusted. Lies involving fate and death; shows what an interesting character I am! – Just a hint of sarcasm.
Before you read this story, I warn you and wish you good luck for the horror this story may cause you. After reading the lives of these people, depression will never be the same again …

* * *

All these people, standing before me, are my troubled friends. Some I’ve known for years and some are new friends who drag their depression along behind them like a heavy anchor that won’t reach the bottom of the sea.
Some of my friends are on one bench on the far side of the school field and my other friends are on the other side of the field: separated.
On certain days, I don’t know who to go to. They all smile yet their feelings are clearly hidden about me since the incident.
I look to my left and see someone who believes that life is worthless and a waste of time, someone who doesn’t mind to leave her friends behind and hang to and fro. The darkest day of my life would be finding out what this person enjoys to do, involving a short rope and a ramp as well as scars up and down her arms … the darkest day of my life … well, was the darkest day of my life until later I discovered something much, much worse than that.
If you were mainly a depressed person, you’d find this book similar to your problems as the true meaning of depression is revealed in the lives of my past friends.
Why did they have to do this to me? There must have been another way to stop it, but there wasn’t, there was only one way out and they took it immediately. They didn’t listen. They didn’t wait. They were gone.
All my friends, the people who were my friends, have unspeakable problems that involve: suicide, running away, social issues, being at death’s door and definitely, definitely being depressed.
It gives me the chills just thinking about it …


/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley -

I come here everyday, believe it or not. I come here to take risks and hope what I want will occur … towards a ramp and a tight short rope on a rusty old pole that holds the creaking, irritating swings.
I looked over to see a shaking figure in the distance of the unforgiving shadows, the outline of something I couldn’t make out clasped in his hands.
I was shaking unsteadily, uncontrollably as I stared across the mist of the night consuming everything in its depth, to my fate – a noose.
I climb up the ramp and stand there for a few seconds, hesitating. Do I really want to do this? Of course! I need this and I want this.
Depression is the obvious reason!
Nothing could be compared to this night. This night is the end of my life, and I think of this hanging as a daily game.

/ l /
- Michael Winters -

The darkness swallowed me as I shook violently with the driving of the gusty wind unwelcoming. My fear was building up and my intentions to walk through this horror altered. It was chilly and surprisingly icy for a summer night. The shadows of the gravestones on the hill in front of the streak of moonlight, lit up my face like a bulb, making it seem as white as paper. The moonlight consumed the darkness …
I walked towards the unforgiving shadows of the hills, buried in moonlight and wiping my perspiration from my forehead. Nothing could be compared to this; the fear was clear in the shining eyes of the figure in the deep, dark distance. The figure ran swiftly towards their target – me – and his/her appearance was hidden but its moon light stricken outline revealed. Was this my fate? Was the figure hunting for me?
I was overcome by fear and overwhelmed by a feeling of nausea. I took one step forward and two steps back. I couldn’t run, I couldn’t hide, and I was ALONE with the figure.
I looked up at the tree branches to avoid eye contact with the figure, they were like a witch’s fingers clasping out and hunting for their prey, and they hung over me precariously. These threatening branches were the last things I saw as the luminous light of the menacing moon was blocked by a large oak tree, the darkness swallowing the shadows and my only chance to live …
I could take it no more; I advanced forward, my hands already covered in my own blood …

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley -

I heard a cry from the distance: a high-pitched, deafening cry of pain echoing into the everlasting eclipse of a summer night. The silence was sickening and the driving of the powerful rain like bullets of icicles glistening ominously shot as fast as sound. The quiet, shy voice of a boy broke the silence.
“Why are you doing this?” Peter asked attentively. He’s the tallest out of us all and has a wide, chubby body with hair as bright as dim light. The dark circles around his eyes enlarge everyday, they had already receded into circular caves, making his green eyes unnoticeable and he has a slight rubicund of visage. He was shivering in spite of the two jumpers he was wearing.
“Because, Peter, I don’t deserve to live and I want the nightmare to end! Nothing goes right in my life and nothing ever will! All I want is to hang there for the rest of my life while all my problems around me just simply fade away!” I snapped with force and venom in my words, tears appeared in my eyes as I stumbled up to the top of the ramp. I gulped as I lifted the noose over my neck like a necklace of death, “I don’t even have the confidence to tell someone about it – I feel like screaming at everyone who has added an extra ton to my mountain of problems! But I have no self-esteem … to think I wanted to be an actress! How foolish is that?”
I look around to see my world fading around me. I look into Peter’s terrified face and see him shaking; he had liked me a lot until he found out that I was trying to commit suicide because of bullying, abused by my parents, self-harming and the worst of all, smoking. I would tell you about those problems but I fear - hope – this the last time I will ever have to do this without realising I have friends who care about me, that’s the worst of all reasons that I run away from ‘West Park’ to my abusive house of continuous noise and stress printed on every object of the house, everywhere you look.
I turn to see a boy as thin as the pole I am hanging from, the smirk on his face making me feel cold inside when I realise who is charging like a bull on rampage towards the ghostly boy with violence written across his pale, pernicious face.

/ l /
- Michael Winters -

My fingers became numb; my eyes as alert as possible; my legs and arms trembling: my fear increasing. My teeth chattered together continuously as the figure sauntered towards me, relentlessly and fearlessly … until our eyes met and my whole world collapsed around me, despite knowing this person very well.
I swooned as I spotted the atrocious, threatening object clasped tightly in his hands and what struck me most was how pale he was, including the liquid that trickled and turned to ice down his scrawny arms …
Before my mind became a blank, tears appeared in my eyes as I lay there on the damp concrete of the road … I saw my best friend hanging from a rope to and fro with her eyes CLOSED …
I took my mobile phone out of my pocket and rang for immediate help …


/ + /
- Tess Calamber -

I always have to tell this story, over and over again. However, not to people I trust but to the worst people in world who force your problems out of you like you have no feelings: psychiatrists. They go on and on about how bad this is when all I do is disagree with them and moan continuously. They don’t understand!
The doctors go on and on about my weight weekly. What is wrong with eating? It gives you energy and makes you happy. So what, I love food! I eat because I’m full, confusing isn’t it? I’m over the average scale, I’m obese and I’m bullied because of it, these are the problems you get when you have a stepmother when your real mother walked out on you.
I don’t deserve this; I was left behind with my devil of a father who brought me up to think that alcohol is the best drink in the world, burping is funny, watching television is exercise and eating more food makes you lose weight! All I wanted was to be brought up going shopping with my mother, having someone who listens and takes me through my life. Nevertheless, I’m still slightly happy because I have someone who cares about me, only one person out of the thousand others that despise me.
My stepmother doesn’t listen; all she does is smokes and has encouraged me to do it too, she’s a crazy woman who deserves to leave me alone! Anyway, enough of past life and problems, here’s what is happening now.
I stood near a cascading fountain, as cold as the weather around me. I began to walk cautiously towards the school doors and as I pushed myself through them and into the noisy atmosphere like a brass band playing so loud that your ear-drums were begging for mercy, I realised the pointing and laughing.
I ignored the fools around me as I charged towards my first lesson but I practically took up the whole hallway. The hallways are too small anyway.
“Hey look, it’s the whale coming to crush us!” A tall teenage boy shouted out loud to all the people in the hallway, they turned and stared at me, laughing hysterically.
The laugh of the school bell echoed throughout the school, I examined the area for the group of people that bully me everyday: stealing my pocket money, force feeding me cakes as a sick joke and lots of other horrible, horrendous things.
I walked then suddenly stumbled, hearing laughing above me as I tumbled down to the carpet, landing on my face and causing my nose to sting.
My bag fell in front of me, its contents flying out into the distance of the everlasting corridors of hell. Then the worst thing of all happened next, tears started as the bullies discovered what I had in my bag.
I’d recently (one year ago) been brought a kitten for my fifteenth birthday; I liked this kitten a lot, so much I wanted to bring it to school to show my friends (hyperbole). The kitten scurried out of the bag towards the tall, wide vicious male bullies. The bullies smirked gleefully as they eyed the kitten dubiously.
I closed my eyes to stop the horror, two of the bullies were ripping my homework to shreds and one bully was writing ‘fat girl’ on everything I owned. Three of the bullies were … kicking my kitten against the wall. Of course, this was because of my weight and my shy personality. Do you get bullied to this extent? Not as bad as what happened next …
They grabbed me by my neck, clenching painfully and strongly, scratching it.
“Get up!” One of the bullies snapped vigorously. I pushed myself up, my small arms hurting from the fall as I was pushed violently. I whimpered as they smacked my nose, already stinging from the violent fall, causing a nosebleed.
“If you ever even look at us or talk to us, you better be begging for mercy as it will be the last request of your life.” If you even talk to anyone, we’ll be there; if you cry we’ll be there. You better watch your back, Calamber, the situation is about to get a lot worse!” Russell Fate said through clenched teeth, holding my face close to his and letting go after his stabbing words, causing me to fall flat on my face for the nineteenth time this week and it was only Tuesday today.
At that moment, the kitten’s heart stopped …
I had to explain why I was late for class, I lied and told my grumpy teacher that I had lost track of time (I wrote it on a piece of paper so I didn’t have to speak). The bullies had got to class before me for some strange apparent reason.
I was asked a question in class: I said nothing. I was asked what I did throughout the weekend: I said nothing. I was asked where were my exercise books (they had been ripped to shreds and the heart-stabbing words written across them in permanent ink, including on my brand new pencil case) so I said nothing.
The bullies smirked unbearably at the back of the room …

/ . /
- Drake Carter -

I have a girlfriend; I have many friends … what is so bad about my life? I may lie about things, A LOT of things, but so what? Lies don’t cause any harm, I lie to my girlfriend that I love her and I lie to my friends that I haven’t spread any rumours about their problems … as I said before, so what?
My friend, Peter Looter, is around my house as we are typing away on the computer to my friends on a chat room. Most of them just say ‘hi’ or ‘hello’ or just simply ‘how are you?’ it is quite annoying but fun to talk to people far away from where I am now.
Peter was inhaling and exhaling continuously at a fast pace as he had stormed through the door an hour ago. He said that he had run away from a friend when she was hanging from a noose at ‘West Park’, I was shocked to discover that his job was to kick the ramp away so that she’d fall from it and dangle. She’s still there now. Peter was scared to death.
My parents weren’t home and I lived in a mansion, so Peter and I could wreck everything in the house if we’d wanted to but, of course, we did not. We simply sat at the computer desk, yawning the evening away.
“If your parents aren’t home, then can we drink some wine or beer, I’m thirsty and there’s no one to tell us off about drinking it,” Peter crazily yet excitedly suggested. I smiled as he ran into the kitchen, grabbing a bottle of wine and swinging it through to the next room.
Wine wouldn’t do any harm, I suppose. We opened the bottle and poured its contents into two glasses.
“Who’s online then?” I wondered as I was searching through the list of people currently on the chat room, taking sips every few seconds of the wine.
Alcohol plays with the mind sometimes, it won’t this time! Last time I drank it I was considering jumping off a bridge into the murky, deep, foggy waters of the sea below, I nearly did and would have regretted it immediately all because of bullying.
The only reason I’m drinking this is because my girlfriend blamed me for everything that goes wrong in her life and I was just thinking: this isn’t my fault! So, after a while of her continuous whining, we had an argument and seem to have fallen out with each other. I don’t understand girls at all.
Sarah Bates has just come onto the chat room and according to the people at school: their opinion is that she is the ‘rhino’ of the school as she is bullied because of her weight including her face looking similar to a rhinoceros’.
“Why don’t you ask her to start a relationship with you as a joke? It will be a right laugh!” Peter chuckled.
“Yeah that would be funny but I’m not drunk enough to ask out a rhino.” I replied, typing away at the keypad to Tess as she was expelled today for being late for all her lessons and not answering any questions to the teachers, which left them suspicious.

Email chat room conversation:

Tess: I can’t take it any more, Drake, I’m getting bullied about everything and now I have no future: I’m expelled!

Drake: It will be okay; you’ll get through it. Don’t worry. It will be okay.

Tess: You’ve been drinking, haven’t you?

Drake: Er … not really...

Tess: Sure. Don’t lie to me. Oh, have you heard that Kathy has been spotted hanging herself from a pole on a noose everyday, TRYING TO COMMIT SUICIDE!

Drake: Oh no, how did you find that out?

Tess: Michael rang me an hour ago, he didn’t sound too good, I asked him why and he hung up on me. I’m really confounded with all this. Kathy is hanging herself, messing with her life and Michael has secret troubles on the streets. What is going on?

Drake: I don’t know, I don’t know. This doesn’t make any sense, why would she want to kill herself; her life is okay, isn’t it?

Tess: You think her life is okay? Think again! You don’t listen to any of your friends do you?

Drake: Can I ask you a question? Could you please stop smoking?

Tess: Could you please stop drinking? Got to go, I will speak to you later, goodbye.

(End of chat room conversation)

Then, she was gone. I felt disappointed all of a sudden, mostly because Kathy is attempting to end her life, which I don’t understand.
My mind was like cotton and my vision was like looking into murky water.
“Drunk enough yet?” Peter muttered. I looked at him uncertainly then clicked on Sarah Bates’ name on the computer screen. I’m going to regret this, obviously.

Drake: Hello.

Sarah: Hi Drake, because of what you said today I think you’re like a brother to me.

“Alright, t-that’s creepy!” I stuttered.
Peter gasped. “Maybe she’s drunk as well!” Peter sipped continuously from the vintage wine, becoming dizzier every second, I could tell immediately.
“Now that would be a coincidence, but I don’t think she’d drink wine.” I replied.

Drake: Okay, thank you.

Sarah: You’re really sweet and kind.

“Okay … I think I’m having suicidal thoughts now!” I exclaimed loudly. Peter laughed hysterically, softening the sound of his exceedingly loud laughter with his hand. I refilled the glass and drank the wine immediately and quickly.
“Type it then!” Peter snapped forcefully, not drinking any more of his threatening wine, “or I’ll do what I did last time when you didn’t obey what I’d said, remember?” Peter’s eyes became narrow, threatening slits, which looked right through me.
I gulped nervously. “I-I-I will s-s-s-soon enough,” I slurred my words as if I was two-years-old and didn’t know how to speak. The flat screen of the computer looked like a whirlpool and the keypad’s buttons were all over the place, and even when I looked into the kitchen I saw the buttons of the keypad in a blurred form. I felt like I was on an around the world sea cruise!

Drake: Do you want to start a relationship with me?

Peter laughed loudly again. After some hesitation, she replied and her reply made me feel even more sick and dizzy.

Sarah: Seriously?

Drake: Yeah!

Sarah: See, you are the sweetest person in the world. But, I’m ugly and freaky; do you really want to start a relationship with a creature like me?

Drake: I don’t mind.

Sarah: Of course I will. Good-bye boyfriend, I’ve got to go.

Drake: Okay, bye girlfriend.

At that moment, I fell off the computer chair, collapsing onto the floor, my mind going completely blank. I lay there, sprawled across the floor as the ring tone of my mobile phone rang continuously throughout the night.
I couldn’t remember anything the next morning.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley -

On my way home, after failing my attempt to end my problems, with a sharp, pointy piece of glass from a smashed bottle I demolished at the park when I was depressed, I scratched at the vein on my left wrist, hoping that the pain would stop. But not the pain of the scratching, the pain of being depressed and I could feel the pulse of depression increasing as I neared my house where horror first began.
I screamed angrily at my surroundings when I swung my arm back and forth, the pain increasing.
I lifted my long hair away from my neck to attempt to stop the pain of the scar on my neck. What excuse will I use this time for having a deep, life threatening cut on my neck? The other excuses were ‘it doesn’t matter’ and ‘nothing really’ which are great excuses aren’t they?
That rope seems to annoy me even more everyday, all I feel is the oxygen from my lungs being forced out and the pain of the rope against my skin increasing. No feel of death, no life-threatening experience and no cold feeling! I need to succeed!
The oppressive darkness had faded and the serious sunlight rays burst through the clouds and destroyed their image. The scolding sound of the twittering birds pecked at my headache, shooting through the powerful morning breeze.
The front door swung open forcefully as I headed towards my house, as if aware of my presence.
The sunken face of my mother appeared, her teeth clenched and her avaricious behaviour frightening me, gazing at me furtively. She struck me across the face and pulled me through the door, cursing at me.
“Where have you been, you’ve been gone all night! Of course I’m not bothered but you must stay inside the house you cannot leave without my permission which I will NEVER give you!” She slammed the door and pushed my skinny body onto the floor with enormous ease.
There was an air of prosaic wholesomeness about the room and violent screaming from upstairs, cries from my sister as she begged for mercy from my father who punched her continuously, and kicked her in the stomach.
The room was dark and gloomy, the furniture was shabby and there was no plaster or wallpaper on the walls, no shade on any of the lights and several large cracks on the ceiling and floor, the floor having no carpet to cover it.
I held back my tears as I was kicked over and over again in my pale face, my lip bleeding and the cut on my neck pulsing with everlasting pain. My breath was inaudible and my mother’s eyes looked into my frightened puppy dog eyes and smirked at my fear.
If I were to wish for something more than anything, it would either be to die or to have no parents. That may sound mean, but which is more horrendous: being abused by these beasts that are so called ‘mother’ and ‘father’, or having freedom in the clouds above, dancing in the freedom, enjoying it forever.
I actually felt close to that cold feeling you get just before you die as the final punch and kick were forced into my face and stomach. I was praying that I would die, holding onto that wish and my own opinion as the abuse came to a halt and I became peaceful.
“KATHY, GO TO YOUR ROOM!” Mother snapped vigorously.
I crawled towards the small cardboard box in the middle of the room and curled up inside. This was my room, even though there was no bed inside this cardboard box and technically this isn’t really a room, is it?

It was night again. The beasts were slumbering upstairs. The depressing darkness poured through the windows as I sat there shivering, drawing pictures with a pencil on a sketchpad.
I drew the menacing moon and shaded the darkness around it, and on the moon I drew a face. A face of a boy sketched across the face of the moon, the boy had a small nose and curly, spiky hair and his name was Michael Winters. Next, I drew a bolt of lightning striking through the word ‘depression’ in fiery writing and over Michaels’ frightened, forlorn, freaked out face.
My eyes were wide from the cold and I looked over at the open window, thinking up a plan. I never get fed, making my eyes seem like dots because you could nearly see my eye sockets, so I could probably fit through the minute gap of the open window.
Underneath my accurate sketch, I wrote pity words to save myself from more abuse:
‘If anyone finds this, I have left the country, leaving my abuse from my parents behind me and my fear filled cries of pain never forgotten. You have made a happy girl into a depressed, suicidal freak. I hope you’re proud; you’re not the only reason. I WANT A LIFE, not to be a failure. I may have moved on or I may already be in the sky with a hollow life.
Have a bad life,
I jumped up and landed on my bare feet, running towards the springy, second-hand sofa and bouncing dramatically off onto the windowsill above the sofa. I used to take trampoline lessons and gymnastics, so this was quite easy for me and when I soared upwards, I did a flip for my own amusement.
I pushed the window with all my force but it would not budge any further. I pulled myself up and squeezed my head through the window, the pain of it getting stuck quickly swept away; I pulled my head back out of the window. I attempted again, this time forcing myself to think of freedom, my heart thundering against my chest trying to break free.
My head made it through and the strong breeze swept away my perspiration and made me close my eyes to enjoy the fresh air.
I heard a loud bang from above, making me jerk my head to look back in awe. Someone was storming down the stairs. I was going to get caught.
I pushed forward violently, hoping that they wouldn’t lock the door at night so it would have been an easy great escape.
My eyes went wide and I was close to crying, I kicked my legs to get myself through. I couldn’t. I was trapped.
I could feel someone’s eyes burning on the back of my head. Then a scream of anger as my leg was tugged.
“Let me go!” I screamed, “Mother, Let me go!”
I had that cold feeling including a burning feeling all over. I looked back to see the raging, twisted face of my mother cursing words I didn’t want to hear. I hate this. I hate my life.
I neared to being trapped again as my shoe slipped on the windowsill. I pulled myself back up again and eased myself through the boundary of freedom and the abusive prison.
I landed on my face, scraping my chin on the concrete floor and pulling myself upright quickly. My mother bashed at the glass with her fists, and I swear I saw a tear trickled out of her left eye as I ran as fast as I could possibly run, which is quite fast, down the road and towards the beauty of freedom.

Half an hour later, I was still alone with only a chocolate bar for food. Every hour, I’d take one piece and devour it greedily: I was ravenous. The chocolate tasted really sweet, its creamy taste melted in my mouth. I had to sneak this delicious bar of chocolate, when I say sneak I mean steal. My parents have no money, not even enough to buy food or new clothes. At the moment, all I have is a pair of jeans covered in grass stains and a torn red woolly jumper.
I stopped to catch my breath, leaning against a barely lit lamppost, flickering on and off. I was afraid that this one lamppost would stop working and I would be drowned in darkness, not able to see a thing in this frightening neighbourhood with only two small houses and a huge, dark oak tree looming over me like a guardian of the night. Ambassadors of darkness hung upside down on the branches of the tree, the spectres of the night flitting through gravity with their winged shape. There were bats here, freaking me out even more.
I heard a whirling sound, a high-pitched whistling as something small spun through the dark sky. I looked over to it, confounded and amazed, wondering what it could be.
I put my hand up, ready to catch whatever it was, it soared and smacked against my hand, hurting my palm. I studied the object in my outstretched palm. It was a mobile phone.
I clicked the button marked ‘contacts’ and searched through the list and I came upon a number, which seemed familiar: 07863079241. I took out my second-hand mobile phone and found the familiar number. This was Michael Winter’s mobile phone. The mobile phone received a text message so I read it ... in confusion. “Call the police; it’s going to kill me.”

/ l /
- Michael Winters -

The teenage boy threw my mobile phone into the dark sky as I dialled furiously for help. I had set a timed text message that would be received in seven minutes exactly.
“Why are you doing this?” I snapped through clenched teeth.
“You know.” The croaky voice of the tall teenage boy said. He pushed me down to the ground, picking up a long, thin branch and striking me with it, then kicking me in the side, “Stay off our territory, this is ‘South End’ and not a place where you can be, if I find you anywhere near our territory again, this gang will be the last of you! You may be the Doxey Marshes Crew, but you cannot enter this area!”
I heard the sound of running footsteps and I looked up at a baseball bat, which struck me on the forehead, causing nothing of the night to be remembered.
Although I was unconscious, I could still hear my surroundings: the cackling of their laugh, the sound of running water and the sound of a plastic bag being pulled over my head, suffocating me.
I was lifted and thrown off somewhere high, I landed with a splash and realised I was inside a huge plastic bag that had been tied, taking me through the powerful force of the water and sinking me even further as I progressed down the river …
To drown is all I want …

/ . /
- Drake Carter -

My eyes snapped open. I had collapsed on the dining room floor, panting heavily and my head feeling as if it was an anchor. I stumbled onto my feet, wobbling back and forth and my vision spinning. I had this horrible feeling in my stomach.
I fell back onto my sofa, trying to recall the events of last night. I remember a blurred computer screen and the ringing of –
I heard the ring tone of my mobile phone again. Was this a hallucination from last night?
I fell to the floor, crawling towards my mobile phone. I picked it up and pressed the green button, croaking a quiet ‘hello’.
“Hello Drake, it’s me Tess.” Tess’ voice said down the phone. I sighed heavily.
“What do you want?” I asked, in a bad mood, feeling no emotions as if alcohol has completely wiped my memory and feelings. Last time I drank too much alcohol I discovered I had cirrhosis which was soon cured after, including my gall bladder not functioning properly. I was close to death at that point, now I’m close to death again: the death of our relationship.
“Are you still coming around my house today?” She asked reassuringly.
“Yeah, suppose.”
“What’s the matter, you seem dim today.”
“I can’t remember what happened yesterday, I asked someone out and I can’t remember who!” I said, then my eyes went wide, realising who I was talking to.
“You asked someone out? But you’re going out with me!” Tess snapped angrily.
“‘So?’ Do you want me to self-harm, smoke and dump you?” She shouted loudly, she seemed like she was crying.
“You can self-harm, just don’t smoke.” The words just came out uncontrollably. I tried to change the subject but she was too quick with her comeback.
“You - how dare you! How dare you say that to me?” I heard the phone being thrown to the floor. I knew I wouldn’t be able to apologise for this.
“And I don’t care if you dump me, you’re too stressful.” My mouth dropped open when I said that, why am I saying this? I know the answer: alcohol.
She hung up and I threw my mobile phone at my computer, both things that have caused trouble, then knocked over the bottle of wine that contained a small amount of wine, it smashed to pieces below me, shards of glass flying everywhere.
Depression + alcohol – friends = angry girlfriend + suicide

I saw my breakfast on the kitchen table, which was a bowl of cereal. I ran towards it, looking over at the cereal box next to it. I picked it up and checked the nutrition information. It contained two grams of fat; I’m not eating this! I’ll gain a lot of weight and become fat!
I looked down at my stomach; it looked fat to me because my ribs aren’t sticking out enough!
I ate a crumb from my mother’s toast she had made this morning and that was all I was eating for the rest of the day.

I arrived at Tess’ house at 5:30 p.m. I knocked politely at the door, awaiting a response.
Tess was smiling when she reached the door, however, when she opened it, her smile faded. She was about to slam the door on me when I stopped it with my foot.
“I-I’m-“I tried to say the two words that would make everything better but they wouldn’t come out.
“Say it or I kill myself right now.” Tess muttered.
“You’ve got to stop using that as a threat! I’m sorry, okay?” I snapped.
She smiled and opened the door to let me in. I walked through as she ran upstairs and I followed.
The house was bare, only a mirror sat on the wall, nothing compared to my three-storey mansion.
“So what do you want to do?” I asked.
“We could kiss like we usually do.” Tess replied.
We sat in the corner of the room, kissing for half and hour, talking and laughing. But, something didn’t seem right.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber -

It was magical but weird. I don’t understand Drake at all. When I was smoking after we kissed, he threw my pack of cigarettes into the fire I had burning in my bedroom (My step-dad can’t afford radiators).
Today is my birthday, I am sixteen-years-old. Drake said he has brought me something but he won’t tell me he just keeps smirking.
I think Drake is angry, I told him that I tell everything about our relationship to my best friend, Kathy Kimberley, and when an argument starts I just stop the argument by kissing.
Drake read through my diary for a while, mocking me for what I wrote, all the mushy stuff. It was hilarious.
6:50 p.m.
“Sit down; I’ve got your present with me.” Drake said, smirking.
“Okay.” I said, smiling.
I thought of what it could be: a new kitten, a game console or maybe even a television!
“Here she is!” Drake said happily as the door opened and hell walked in. At first, I thought it was my stepmother because the person who walked in looked like a mirror image to my stepmother.
It was my real mother.
“You promised me some cigarettes if I saw this child. Where are my cigarettes?” Mother said. She was clearly drunk as she wobbled while she walked.
My heart sank. What I’ve wanted my whole life is … a disaster. Drake could have brought me anything and I wouldn’t have been bothered, but this creature in my bedroom is an atrocious present, I kicked him out of my house before returning to what once was my bedroom, now it is hell.
My whole life revolved around this day, it was like looking into a future image, and there was only one way to stop my future turning out this way. I need to have no future so all I have to do is look into my third drawer and take out what could end my life in an instant. This creature wouldn’t care if I killed myself in front of her; all she cares about are her own feelings, which is the only reason she left me.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley -

I pocketed the mobile phone, ignoring the request from the text message.
Bats flew over me noisily, their wings beating against the quiet wind. Their red eyes glaring and their squawking sound frightening.
I set up my tent that I had in my backpack near a river at Doxey Marshes, I always run away here. It’s so peaceful and safe, birds my sky company and flowers my ground company. Beautiful, shining flowers sprouting up high around me, especially daffodils that made me smile.
A pier stood out on the river, which I sat at as the menacing moon shone across the murky water.
At this exact place, Drake Carter attempted to jump in here because we had all got drunk near the river. It was quite funny actually until he wanted to jump in. I stopped him, of course … although; he couldn’t remember me saving him.
The tent was large and had a quilt cover inside: that’s all. I lay on the side of the river, counting the stars above. 10 … 50 … 90 … and then …
There was a furious splashing in the water, startling me and causing me to stand up too quickly. I ran across the pier, trying to focus on what was splashing so much. It looked like a bag from this distance … but … what was inside the bag?
I tried to remember my lifeguard lessons when I was in primary school. I closed my eyes and started to dive head first into the water.
I was consumed by the deep water and grabbed by weeds and algae, fishes swimming at a rapid speed away from where I was sinking.
I pressed against the water with my hands and swam; my eyes open below the water, heading towards the splashing.
Carbon dioxide was leaving my lungs quite quickly as I exhaled underwater, producing air bubbles.
I felt like I was going to die at that moment but then I got pulled to the surface by a strong current. I looked up to see the bag causing a powerful current; whatever was inside was causing a lot of commotion.
I clasped the bag and pulled at the rope tied around the bag’s opening. The knot came undone and the figure’s arms came forcing out. I wrapped my arm around the bag and swam strongly back to the coast.
I freed the figure out of the bag, throwing the bag onto the grass. A boy shot out immediately. The boy’s face looked familiar and I stared at him in horror as I clambered onto the coast, pulling myself up and crouching beside him. He looked like he had been in a serious fight: two black eyes, bruises all over his arms and legs, his head seeping with blood and his nose bleeding. Strangely enough, he looked cataclysmically bored with an ostentatious lack of interest.
This was the boy I had drawn a couple of hours ago, against the moon and at that exact moment that I was thinking about the lightning strike I had drawn, the weather became angry and thunder erupted in the sky including flashing lights. What on Earth is going on here?

/ . /
- Drake Carter -

I’ve rang Tess over twenty times now, trying to apologise. She won’t answer her phone. I feel guilty now for finding her mother, I think it would have been better for her if she’d just imagined her mother as this amazing person instead of someone who drinks and smokes and has no life at all. Her mother had sunken in eyes and a face like she never slept. Her hair was a mess, brown and really curly, too curly for normal hair. She wore rags and she was covered in bruises.
If Tess wasn’t answering my calls, I know just who to talk to. I went through my contact list and came to Carla Rose. I pressed away at the buttons on my mobile phone:

Hey Carla, how are you? Love you. I’ll speak to you later x.

I awaited a reply while I leant against an oak tree at Doxey Marshes, yanking leaves off the tree for my own amusement.
There was a ringing from my hand and I realised I’d received a reply from Carla:

Love you too. I hope to see you later. I’m fine, thanks. Miss you so much!

I was cheating on Tess, all because she has made me depressed and has made me cry all the time, accusing me as the cause of her problems.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley -

Michael looked at me uncertainly, as he went into the tent to change from his soaking clothes. However, he had no spare clothes so Michael came out wearing one of my shirts and a black pair of trousers. He pulled a black robe over the embarrassing clothes, blending in with the trousers, which were a lighter shade of black.
“When you said you had spare clothes, I didn’t think you meant these.” Michael moaned. I laughed hysterically at him wearing a red dress, for some strange reason it suited him; I dare to tell him that, though.
“Now all you need is your makeup on and a manicure, Mrs Winters.” I laughed again. Michael gave me a look of resentment yet slightly it looked as if he was going to laugh, which he did. “What are those?” I pointed at the objects in the bag.
“Oh, they’re golf clubs,” Michael said as I gave him a look of confusion, “I’m not sure, they put two in the bag with me before they threw me in the river.” How would I describe Michael? He has hair with a shiny streak of blonde and mainly brown as short as a drawing pin’s point. He is really tall and thin, the tallest boy I’ve ever known.
I had just finished off my chocolate bar, devouring the last piece in a second. Chocolate was the only food I had taken with me and the only drink I had taken with me was alcohol: twenty cans of beer.
We laughed and told our past stories, what I didn’t tell him was that I was hanging myself daily and that my parents were abusing me. Then, we started to drink the beer … a lot!
7:05 p.m.
We drank one can.
7:10 p.m.
We drank two more.
7:20 p.m.
We drank three more.
8:00 p.m.
We drank fourteen more cans!
Then, the worst thing happened. I couldn’t recall most of it, it all happened so quickly:
We picked up the golf clubs and wandered out of Doxey Marshes, leaving the tent behind.
We came to a long, winding street dotted with houses of all different sizes and a horrible feeling lingered inside as I realised what I did next.
As we neared a Mercedes car, we smashed the windows with our golf clubs, the glass flying into the car and the eardrum bursting sound of the agonising alarm setting off.
We ran as fast as the driving winter wind, hiding then searching for another car to destroy. As the night progressed, we’d smashed thirteen cars until two ‘o’ clock in the morning.
On the last car, a figure came from the house that the car was parked next to. What he said to us seemed a blur in my mind:
“What are you doing to my car? Get off my property, I’m calling the police!”
At the word ‘police’ we ran towards him. I swung the golf club close to his head, and then I stopped half way. I thought I’d escaped the fear of hurting or even killing someone, until … Michael smacked his golf club against mine at great force, causing my golf club to beat through the air and smack the man violently hard on the head. He fell to the ground. Our golf clubs covered in the old man’s blood.
The old man had whitish, greyish hair, which was short and all over the place. He was wearing a green sweatshirt and brown jeans, as he lay there, frozen.
“I can’t believe we hit him!” Michael gasped in horror.
“Oh my God, do you think we killed him?” I said as I leant down beside him and checked his pulse. After some hesitation and my face becoming pale and as white as paper, I looked up at Michael with tears in my eyes. The man was dead.
We hid the golf clubs; no one would know it was we. That day stalked me for the rest of my life, having a nightmare of every exact detail when we returned to the tent.
That whole experience was a living nightmare …

/ + /
- Tess Calamber -

The creature was downstairs after I shook uncontrollably and came to a final decision that I did not want to see this thing ever again.
I hid my face under my bed covers, pressing my cushion against my face and switching on the television. It was quite annoying really; the only program I had was the news.
My tears dripped onto the cushion and my face looked like my mother’s. I shook even more when I realised what was on the news.

“Earlier this morning, a local elderly man was found dead outside his house, it appears he was hit continuously on the head as there was no evidence except the blood splotches on his forehead. A boy was found responsible; he was caught acting innocent outside Wilbur Fleming’s house, apparently on his mobile phone trying to outwit officers that he was not involved in the crime. To make the situation more obvious, the boy ran away and was immediately caught when running to 26 Apple-Berry Road.”

That was my address. My eyes went wide and my shaking pace increased. I lay in bed, munching away at individual chocolates from a small rectangular box. I listened intently as the news commentary continued.

“However, there was some evidence on the crime scene. Underneath the body in the pool of blood was a chocolate bar wrapper. There is no way to investigate the identity of the person who ate this chocolate bar but a saliva sample could identify the murderer or the chocolate bar could have belonged to the victim. Simon Calamber, as the boy identifies himself as, is now in custody and his trial will begin tomorrow at noon.”
Simon Calamber was not the name of my father, my brother (if I had one) or any of my family. Drake had used a fake name. I pushed the chocolates to one side when I heard the part about the blood and chocolate.
What bothered me most was that Drake had murdered a man, all because I moaned at him and blamed him for everything, making him so depressed that he took the life of an elderly man.


/ . /
- Drake Carter -

PRISON: A public building used to house convicted criminals and accused persons awaiting trial. Any place of confinement.
This isn’t fair! I didn’t do anything, obviously. I stood outside an elderly man’s house and I’m accused of murder? – That makes no sense!
It’s dark and cramped here, no one to trust and no one to talk to. The other prisoners who think I’m cool treat me like dirt except. Stupid prisoners!
Thankfully, this isn’t a permanent sentence. My fate will be decided in a few weeks by a judge who will have me placed in this malicious place for years to come.
I get fed some slop everyday, I don’t know the name of it and I don’t want to. It tastes disgusting. It looks like I’m eating worms; I know that it is noodles but I’ll need a lot of convincing!
I shouldn’t be here. Maybe I’m in prison for cheating on my girlfriend. Unlikely story! I hope Tess doesn’t know because if she does then the worst could happen that she keeps threatening to do!
My so-called ‘trial’ is today. What am I going to say? The truth of course, if they’ll believe me … there is only one problem: I can’t tell the truth, I’ve told a lot of lies my whole life.
At the trial, later that day, many people arrived including my parents that I never see because they are always at work. Although, all my friends showed up except two: Kathy and Michael.
Everything was going great, I told the truth and my story, but then … Tess gave her side of the story.
Later that day …
I sat there, shaking and nervousness overwhelming me as I sat in the court. A grumpy judge with a glass eye and a long grey beard hanging from his chubby chin sat in the large chair in front of me. He had ruby cheeks and his hair … well he had none whatsoever.
The tight handcuffs dug into my skin, causing red marks to appear and agony taking over nervousness.
“Thank you all for coming. We are gathered here to discuss the previous event involving the murder of Wilbur Fleming, here we have the suspect and,” The judge pointed over to a large girl in the crowd, the girl was Tess and next to her was her birthday gift, “… the eye-witness, Tess Calamber.” The crowd applauded, causing me to look around in disgust that they didn’t applaud for me, well why would they?
“Drake Carter will now discuss his point of view on his murderess behaviour. I wish you all good luck listening to his many lies.” The Judge muttered and at the word ‘lies’, Tess smirked.
I stood up and stated my opinion, which I think will get me out of here, even though I did not have a lawyer: “Thank you, thank you. No need to applaud, just sit there and save your energy.” I said as the crowd gave me evil looks, “Well, I was outside the elderly old man’s house and I was sending texts off my mobile phone to my girlfriend.” Tess foolishly checked her mobile phone for messages at that moment, taking her phone out of her pocket, “as I was, I heard a cry of pain and as I looked over I saw golf clubs being swung back and forth against the man’s stomach and head. The two figures examined the body then left the scene, throwing their golf clubs down a drain. As they ran, cans of beer fell from their pockets and there was a trail of twenty beer cans leading into Doxey Marshes. I couldn’t identify the two figures, but I knew one was a girl and one was a boy.” Then it struck me, I knew who they were, my eyes went wide with fear and I looked around the courtroom for Kathy and Michael. I had to change my story immediately so that I didn’t get my best friends prosecuted.
“Continue.” The Judge mumbled grumpily. Perspiration appeared on my palms and I shook once again, I shook too much.
“I-I saw t-t-two boys that looked like they were seven or eight. I was about to follow the trail of beer cans when a policeman grabbed my arm. End of story.”
The crowd was shocked, although, because of my change of story about two seven-year-olds committing a murder is very unlikely; they thought it was a lie. But then my heart lifted when Tess was taken to the eyewitness seat. The judge asked her if she was going to tell the truth, the truth and nothing but the truth and she replied ‘yes’.
“Do you think that Drake would commit a murder such as this?” The judge asked quickly.
My parents were snoring at the back of the room – seriously! They didn’t care about me at all, which would probably mean they would have no faith in me if I went to jail. Then I looked away from my parents towards what would be my way out – Tess!
“I believe,” She looked at me and I smiled widely, winking at her with tears in my eyes, knowing that she would get me out of this, I cared about her a lot, and she continued with enthusiasm: “…that Drake would murder someone as after he departed from my house, I had made him depressed and at this moment I hate him more than anything and he hates me, which would make him act out of character and murder someone.” I cried into my hands, looking at her in disappointment as she mouthed the words: “I’m sorry”.
“From the evidence presented today, I find Drake Carter …” The judge muttered the final words; would it be ‘guilty’ or ‘not guilty’? I’ll never know.
My arms were so skinny because of my anorexia (people try to convince me that I am, but I don’t believe them) so I could easily make my way out of the handcuffs.
I ran down the isle at an incredible speed, avoiding the guards trying to grab me and sprinted towards the front door. It was locked. I went around the crowd and towards the backdoor, pulling powerfully at the handle and an alarm erupting in the courtroom. The backdoor lead to a garden connected to Doxey Marshes, I fell through the door. Tess took no notice.
The garden was mainly a maze of large, tall hedges, which fit perfectly for the occasion of hiding and escaping. Fluorescent flowers of a variety of colours blew back and forth in the peaceful wind and a huge flytrap flower sat at the bag of the garden next to strings of ivy which appeared to be everywhere in the garden.
Two guards wearing black suits and sunglasses, their appearance hidden by their collar covering their face and a black hat hiding their hair stormed out the backdoor. I hid behind a hedge as they went to the maze entrance on the left, which meant that they would go to a dead end. I took that as an advantage and headed towards the flytrap flower and behind it was a fence. The fence was low and was easy to jump, so of course I took the risk. I hovered through the air, landing and running on the other side. The guards ran into the dead end of the hedge maze, trapped.
I came to a river and saw a large tent, I’m sure whoever was inside would be generous enough to let me hide, I could make up an excuse that I was playing hide and seek. I laughed at the thought.
I didn’t have much time; the guards would be here any minute now. I sprinted exceedingly fast and came to the entrance of the tent, jumping through the entrance to land in-between two people sleeping. I was about to apologise when I realised who I had just woken up. Kathy and Michael – the real murderers!

/ + /
- Tess Calamber -

What ever happened to honesty? He never tells the truth, and now he’s dead. It’s my entire fault.
I sat on my bed, slitting my wrist and fighting away all of my fears. I cried over and over again throughout the night, not able to get to sleep. I’m depressed by all my childish fears. Drake cheated on me. This pain is just too real, there’s just too much that time cannot erase.
I looked at a picture of Drake and realised all the love had died. We forgot about faith, we knew it would drive us apart. He left me behind and probably ran away to his other girl.
Everything in the house was quiet, all except my silent weeping. My mother had gone to a bar and my stepmother and stepfather had gone. They couldn’t handle my depressed behaviour so they left the house to me and did what they’ve always wanted to do: they left the country to the hot climate of Majorca and would never come back.

Alone + depressed + smoking + suicidal thoughts = dead

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley -

I slept on one side of the tent while Michael slept on the other. Although, when we were drunk we did kiss. A boy flying through the entrance of the tent awaked us. It was Drake Carter.
“Kathy! Michael!” Drake snapped as he spotted us both, his face twisted and full of confusion.
“Drake, w-what are you doing here?” Michael stammered.
“I’ve been accused of murder because of two names, not mentioning any in particular but … you two murdered an elderly man and I have a criminal record because of it!” Drake whispered hoarsely through clenched teeth.
“Yeah, we saw that on Kathy’s mini television. You were outside the elderly man’s house when we ran away, that’s not our fault that you were accused.” Michael said.
“It is your fault! Why did you do it?” Drake shouted, sitting down in the tent next to me.
“We drank ten cans of beer each and we –,” I started.
“You mean you got drunk?” Drake looked at us with his mouth dropped as we nodded guiltily, “Alcohol causes too many problems, and it has caused me to ask out the rhino girl of the school, now it has caused you two to murder someone!”
I stuck my head out of the tent entrance to look for the guards – they were gone.
Worry cleared out of my mind but fear still lingered as I ducked back into the tent.
“It least you haven’t done anything else dangerous and stupid.” Drake moaned. I coughed nervously causing Drake to look at me uncertainly, gazing at me with his eyes altering into slits, “What else have you done?”
“I-I-I go to West Park to hang myself on a noose attached to a pole daily, hoping that I wouldn’t live another second.” I said slowly.
“That was you!” Michael’s eyes went wide and goose bumps appeared up and down his arms. I nodded unhappily.

Two Years Later …


/ . /
- Drake Carter -

My false criminal record was cleared after a year. No one remembered that it was I and everything went quiet.
Michael is now eighteen-years-old and is in the same place as me: college. He is even taller than he was before and now wears glasses. Although, the problem he had two years ago still lingers, the ‘South’ have become stronger and have even more violent people in their gang, still-hunting for Michael to get back something he took from them.
Kathy is still suicidal, however she is now a roommate with Tess as she has sold her house and moved into a large apartment for two people. Kathy still has her visits to the noose at West Park but they have become once a week and not once a day, which is a relief. Kathy didn’t leave the country like she wanted to, but she became a lot happier when she was free of the abuse from her parents.
Tess has more scars on her arms than anyone in the world, while Kathy is getting better; Tess is becoming even more depressed everyday. Tess and I broke up and I cried and cried. I already knew that she was going to dump me as she told Michael about her problems with me. She tells Michael everything! Sadly, Tess goes to the same college as me and I still have memories of the day we broke up when all I said to her as she looked down at the ground at West Park was: “Get it over and done with!” My foolish pity words which soon led to me crying and me and her having a HUGE argument. She has gained five stone in two years while I have lost two stone in two years making my weight four stone, which is apparently terrible for a seventeen-year-old.
I cough blood everyday and won’t eat anything but a crumb a day, even though I have enough food to feed an army in my mansion. My parents don’t even care that I’m at ‘death’s door’! Some people say that I am doing this to get my parents attention but they’re wrong. I’m not eating anything because I don’t want to be fat again, because if I were fat again I’d be bullied again. None of my friends know that I have anorexia problems and I don’t intend to tell them.
After that day at Doxey Marshes we all made a promise not to go any where near alcohol ever again. Alcohol had nearly torn our lives apart; you just had to look at Tess’ mum to see that. I dumped Sarah straight after our promise; she actually thought I wanted to go out with her! She got very angry and wont talk to me again and I dumped Carla Rose near when Tess was going to dump me because I realised I loved Tess more, shows how wrong I was!
With no more alcohol in our lives there was still the matter of Tess and Kathy smoking which could risk their life in future.
Everything was about to get A LOT worse as I had more and more friends and thought I’d gain some respect by making up a lie that dramatically changed my life forever …


/ . /
- Drake Carter -

It was just a normal, typical day. The sinister sun was shining, bursting through the dark clouds as I walked with Michael, Kathy and Sarah across a field dotted with poppies.
Today was the day I was going to tell them. I was going to tell them something that had been troubling me since birth and that I knew would gain me some respect and hopefully get Michael to be my friend again as he was ignoring me because I spread a rumour about him.
I didn’t think before I blurted out with the biggest secret I’d kept for a long time.
Michael kept his distance from me because he despised me. Do you want to know why? It’s a really stupid reason: Michael hates me because he told me that Tess had a new boyfriend and I rang him up and threatened him when I wasn’t even supposed to know. This lie would hopefully make him forgive me.
Michael was talking to Kathy about her past life and if she has stopped being suicidal, munching on a bag of chips caked in salt. Sally, a blonde haired girl with a witty personality and a short height with a lightweight, was lingering behind, an outcast to us all. Now was the perfect time.
“I’ve got something to tell you, I don’t want to but I have to. I’m going to die in two months. Since I was a baby my organs haven’t been functioning properly and now at this age it has started to take effect. The doctors said they couldn’t do anything else for me. I have two months left until I have nothing left.” I muttered, closing my eyes as I spoke and looking up to see tears appearing in Michael’s eyes, Kathy’s face becoming frozen and Sarah’s face full of confusion and because of what I said she was never an outcast again.
“Seriously, you’re not lying?” Michael asked with a look of shock on his face.
“Nope, I’m not lying.” I muttered tentatively.
“What’s up about the doctors, I’m well scared please tell me you’re lying!” Kathy stuttered, “Oh my God, Drake, oh my God.”
“It’s not fair, I’ll never see any of you lot again.” I lied as I frowned deeply.
“I’m so upset, I can’t stop crying or shaking. It doesn’t deserve to be you, you don’t deserve this.” Kathy wept into her hands as we sat down on a bench buried in poppies. This place was once West Park; I looked into the distance to see the sharp, bent pole that Kathy used to hang herself from. There has been a lot of misery for Kathy in this place. This was the right time, not the right place. Michael started punching himself whilst he silently wept to ‘show his masculinity’. Sarah had her eyes closed.
“I asked Tess out again and she said ‘no’ and everyone hates me so everything in my life is collapsing. I don’t want to go, it’s just not fair.” I sobbed with the others.
“Why can’t it be someone else and we don’t hate you, we will never hate you!” Kathy looked terrible, I shouldn’t have told them but the reaction roller coaster was great!
“Thank you, so much.” I stuttered through my weeping.
“Don’t thank me, I’m not helping. I want to help you but I can’t though because I can’t stop what is happening. I wish I could help you but I don’t want you to go.”
Michael and Sarah stood up, covering their eyes. “We’re just going for a walk, okay?” Michael muttered before taking small steps through the stream of poppies. I couldn’t think up a reply, I looked down at my shoes in bewilderment: I didn’t want to speak. Silence swallowed our voices.
Kathy looked ahead as Sarah leant against the familiar deathly pole, her face in her hands. Michael comforted her, his facial expression confounded.
I got up and so did Kathy and we approach Michael and Sarah. Kathy sprinted through the perky poppies, ahead of me and toward Michael. They began having a conversation, which I could not contemplate.
I had to make this lie more believable; maybe I could collapse and say it’s because of the increasing powerful, pernicious pain in my stomach.
So my first thought was my only chance of getting respect and sympathy. I collapsed onto the powerfully scented poppies, buried by their total. I forcefully closed my eyes and waited for triumph.
I was grabbed by my side and lifted out of the blanket of poppies. I was pushed onto someone’s back and was overwhelmed by a stench of alcohol and realised it was Michael’s back I was hunched on.
He held me in front of him as if I was a baby and shook me carefully. His grip on me was strong and painful.
“Drake, wake up! Drake, wake up!” He shook me harder and playing dead began to get boring. I opened my eyes slightly and peered into Michael’s frightened elegant eyes. He let out a sigh of relief as he saw that I was alive.
“Don’t ever do that to me again, you scared me to death.” He carried me to the pole and put me down beside it. Sarah had run home, her face red from fright and her eyes tear filled. She was already in a frightful state when I told her that I asked her to be my girlfriend because of alcohol. My bottle of wine is now labelled: ‘do not drink after nine ‘o’ clock, may ask out rhinoceroses!”
The sun lightened our famished faces, we hadn’t eaten anything all day and I assumed none of my friends would after discovering a horrid lie. I don’t deserve to live after telling them a lie like this.
Kathy was up all night, crying her fears out. Michael looked through happy, peaceful pictures of me in sadness. Sarah couldn’t stand thinking of the thought of my face being pale (well, it is very pale already) and my heart’s beats at a halt forever. I’d created a lie that was eating my friends up inside.
Strangely enough, despite the previous events being life changing, all I thought about was the day Tess and I broke up…

It was a wonderful day, everybody was in peaceful harmony, everyone I knew. I woke up with the biggest smile on my face that morning and felt like nothing could go wrong today…of course I was wrong!
Michael and this girl he REALLY likes called Chelsea, are with me as we sat on the ancient (five years old) climbing frame, simply talking. Michael REALLY likes Chelsea, however she is in a relationship with Bradley Cold who treats her like a piece of dirt and she still seems to love him.
Chelsea has long and curly dark hair; she is quite tall and has hazel eyes. She is quite humorous yet she can be very stressful from time to time. I think Michael and her would be a perfect couple, although, Chelsea doesn’t realise that.
“Calm down, you have to be the best to her throughout this week because you only have two days left until she is going to dump you, according to babe here.” Michael muttered with his arm around Chelsea who has a warming smirk across her face.
“You’ve got to stop calling me that; Brad would kill you if he knew you were calling me that – Literally!” Chelsea chuckled.
“I don’t know. Maybe I should dump her first then she’d feel bad that she never got the chance! That’s it! That would work!” I shouted excitedly.
“Yes. But if she were to change her mind at the last minute then you’d feel terrible, wouldn’t you?” Michael replied to my perfect plan reassuringly.
My heart sank. I’d been grieving all last night from my loss of Tess. Why is she dumping me? I haven’t been mean to her or anything. I’m very bewildered.
Then Michael’s phone rang and he laughed at the remarks someone was saying on the other side of the phone. Isn’t it obvious that is talking to him? The devil: Tess Calamber. He hung up after they said they’re goodbyes.
“Let me guess…it was the cow wasn’t it?” I asked through clenched teeth.
“If you mean Tess, then yes.” Michael and Chelsea sat on the freshly cutgrass of the field, next to each other, sharing a look of love. Of course, if Kathy or Bradley were there, the sight of them two together would eat them up inside.
“I hate her she’s the devil and she’s probably just eating a five course meal as we speak! She is disgusting!” I snapped vigorously.
“If you insult Tess again I’ll beat your head in.” Michael glared over angrily and I shut up after that. He wasn’t joking. Of course he would beat me up. He’s like that.

An hour later, Tess arrived and kept quiet while all I said every five minutes: “Get it over with, then.”
As Michael and Chelsea cuddled, I sat some distance away from Tess and as she approached me I backed further away until we were one metre away from each other and two metres away from Michael and Chelsea.
Tess muttered the heart stabbing words that ruined my life. I could feel myself becoming dizzy and oh no…the tears were back. The tears were worse this time and Tess looked embarrassed.
Chelsea came over to Tess and me and took one look at me as I pulled my hood over my face and stared down at Tess with an evil expression.
“Look, see what you’ve done you’ve broken his heart!” Chelsea moaned at Tess.
“I’ve done my grieving anyway, so I don’t care!” I snapped.
“Do I care?” Tess muttered, “Drake hates me anyway so I don’t care.” I looked at Tess angrily.
“What’s wrong with you? What’s your problem?” I snapped. I cried and cried until a thought popped into my head. But not exactly a thought, a lie!

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

My sickening scream welcomed the darkness as the electricity was cut again. I assume it’s by those pesky teenagers lurking around the apartment building cutting the electricity wires.
Kathy still wasn’t home – which pushed my patience to the limit. All I end up doing is giving her a certain time to be home after dark…I’m like her mother!
The apartment was quite big, in my opinion. From the profit of the house that my pernicious parents abandoned me, I was able to buy quite a satisfactory sized apartment.
The apartment had a plague of curtains hanging around every window and even on the door. Light blue paint made up most of the wall and ceiling with glass squares fixed into the walls, enabling streaks of pale moonlight to push through and decrease darkness, although, because of the fact that we have no double glazed windows the chance of burglary increases.
Recently, I received a level ‘E’ at college in mathematics which seems to act as pier-pressure on my depression and self-harming hobbies, including the fact that the relationship with Drake still lingers in my memory causing my smoking antics to increase rapidly throughout the years.
I was the first to be told about Drake’s serious problem involving the heartbreaking word: DEATH. I cry continuously during my final days, without Drake there’s no need for me to live.
I hunted around the darkness for some sort of light source. I came upon a lamp, switching its light energy on to free myself from the beast called darkness. The strong white glare of the lamp shone upon my silver coffee table, nearly blinding me from the powerful reflective rays.
The door clicked open and strolled in a drunk, tired roommate cautious of the time: 4:00 a.m. Kathy looked around the room and muttered a sound, not a word.
“Has something changed? Have you made everything blurred?” Kathy stuttered innocently.
“No … it’s called coming home drunk and your vision becoming messed up, I thought you’d be used to that now. Oh and the teenagers have been ruining the electricity again – it only seems to affect our apartment, no one else in the building suffers.” I said rather aggressively.
“Calm down! It could be something else other than teenagers.” Kathy foolishly suggested.
“Of course,” I said sarcastically, “What else could it be?” I stared at Kathy dismissively: I hated living with her. Kathy slumped down beside me on the sofa, near the blinding light reflected on the coffee table.
“I-I-I,” Kathy started but I reputedly interrupted her when I caught the scent of smoke.
“Have you been smoking? You said you’d quit and you promised Michael and Drake that you’d stop drinking!” I snapped then looked across at the covered windows when I heard the loud, deafening sound of a dog barking harshly, close to screeching, into the night sky. The howling was in a register almost high enough to break crystal. I assumed it was bark; it would be in a dog’s nature to bark but not to produce a sound that would cause the glass of the windows to quiver in and out slowly. Maybe it was the wind, but I’m sure it was distinctly a bark of a dog that was similar to the sound of thumping yet exceedingly alike a screech of some kind.
I looked back at Kathy and she had feinted from the large alcohol intake, which didn’t surprise me.
There was a click as the door locked; all the doors lock themselves in this apartment building during the middle of the night to avoid unwanted visitors entering their property.
The room temperature increased suddenly, not only do the teenagers alter the electricity they also change the temperature of our room. There was no way of stopping whoever was inside the control room on the third floor; the door was locked until 10:00 a.m. in the morning.
The temperature was already above one hundred Degrees Celsius and it felt like an oven in here. I couldn’t stand it: I was breaking sweat continuously.
Kathy didn’t seem to notice, she was unconscious and useless. I picked up the phone from the receiver on the silver coffee table, near a picture of Michael and Drake smiling outside north café, and my heart sank: no signal.
I may be a teenager myself but I hate every teenager in the world at this moment.
A great deal of acrid, black smoke billowed from the thermostat, a loud bang filling the silence of the room.
A hundred and twenty five Degrees Celsius … a hundred and fifty Degrees Celsius … the temperature of Hell neared. I was breaking enough sweat to fill a reservoir. What was going on? I need help ... we need help ... immediately.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

Next day at school, some of my friends asked for evidence as there was a rumour that the whole matter was a lie. Who would be twisted enough to make up a lie like that?
I brought in a ‘letter’ from the hospital as evidence that I am going to die in two months: some people believed and some didn’t. Michael Winters, on the one hand, did not believe me and thought I’d made up the whole thing, while on the other hand, Kathy’s belief increased (the only person who did believe me, by the way). Is Michael psychic or something?
The letter looked realistic, although it had some grammatical errors including the hospital address missing, making it obvious that the hospital would not forget to include their address in a formal letter, they never would. Michael wasn’t talking to me anymore; he ignored every word I said.
“Hey Michael, so how are you?” I asked near the school entrance when he had his arm around Chelsea. The two of them still weren’t a couple.
“Right … the hell with you,” Michael replied, looking into the distance of the school grounds. Chelsea waved a goodbye to Michael, smiled and then looked at me with clear disgust.
During Physics, as the teacher was explaining Volts, Amps and Watts, Michael finally began to talk to me, possibly because it was Physics and he had nothing better to do.
“Could I ask your opinion on Chelsea? Do you think I should kiss her to let her know how I feel? Or is it too sudden?” Michael asked.
I didn’t know how to reply; at least he was talking to me, or was this a test to see if I liked Chelsea more then a friend and give him a reason to turn against me?
“I’m not sure, just follow your heart and if your heart says ask her to be your girlfriend then go ahead. I think you should, yes.” I muttered uncertainly. I closed my eyes, afraid of his reply just in case it was a vicious outburst. I opened them, looking out in fear and saw a face of ecstatic qualities.
“Thanks, man!” Michael collected his books and got up as the chuckle of the school bell echoed into the halls of education to indicate it was lunchtime. I saw Tess running by; it’s funny that she’s always late for class but when the lunch bell calls, she’s never late!

At lunch, I looked through the window of the entrance door and saw Chelsea and Michael holding hands with a crying Bradley standing in front of them. Bradley has long, spiky blonde hair that is similar to a tall wave with streaks of brown at the back and on top. He has a thin face with a cold looking stare and tears streamed down his face as slow as the speed of time. Bradley was dumped and Chelsea and Michael shared their first kiss. Michael thought it was the right time, and I believe it was.
I wanted that: a girlfriend who cared about me in a relationship that was slow and meaningful.

Later that day, everyone was surrounding me as I left the school and walked onto the school grounds. All faces of anger and fury stared at me cursively.
I couldn’t breathe, mainly because I don’t eat and my stomach shrinks an inch everyday. I could feel the pulsing pain in my stomach increasing, as I am also claustrophobic.
Michael punched me hard in the stomach as I ducked under the crowd and ran for my escape, the punch slowing me down and leaving a sickening feeling. I couldn’t fight back to Michael; I have no strength at all and find it wrong to attempt to hurt my friends.
I pressed against the strong gusty wind as I sprinted furiously and fear leading me on towards the freedom of the school gates, all the angry faces of my friends in my memory … they will stay there, forever.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

7:00 P.M that evening: School firework display, 2007.
“Don’t worry about him; I’m sure you’ll find someone who cares about you a lot more, someone who thinks you’re beautiful, who considers your feelings before his own.” I smirked at Chelsea with glee and she smirked back.
“Maybe he’s right there in front of me and I don’t realise it. Maybe he has spiky, short blonde hair with sparkling blue eyes and a thin appearance wearing a black school uniform with a red tie and a white collar,” She put her hand on my cheek.
“You are talking about me, right?” I looked at her with a perplexed look, she didn’t reply so I went on, “Maybe there’s a girl out there for me too with brown hair down to her elbows and glistening green eyes, she is also quite short and thin wearing a black school uniform with a velvet tie and a red collar.” Chelsea smiled glumly and I smiled nervously back, continuing with our little game, “Her name begins with a ‘C’ and she is standing right in front of –“
“Don’t ruin it! You gave it away, you’re meant to be mysterious. That’s what flirting is all about!” Chelsea exclaimed.
“So, this is kind of like … flirting lessons?” I asked, bewildered.
“You could say that, yeah.” Chelsea smiled happily. I frowned, hiding my frown with the back of my hand. Chelsea took this as a sign that I didn’t want to kiss her, so she glared angrily (seriously, she gets angry that easily!).
“I don’t understand you. You want me to learn how to flirt with you? You’re not that special!” I snapped.
“What did you just say?” Chelsea exclaimed through clenched teeth and tears appearing in her eyes, her face becoming a violet colour.
“You think I can’t flirt?” I growled angrily.
“Well, yeah. If you were me hearing what you’d said, you’d laugh!” Chelsea moaned, chuckling to herself.
“Well…” I kissed her on the cheek and she looked slightly happier, “is that better than fighting and flirting?”
“Wow, you can flirt!” Chelsea laughed and we kissed in the middle of the corridor, the giggle of the school bell had erupted with noise an hour ago. We were late for class … we didn’t care! “You do know I have to leave next week for three days to go to a concert with a friend, don’t you? Will that be okay?”
I put my hand on Chelsea’s cheek as she grinned irresistibly. “I want you to know that I love you more than anything and always will, you mean the world to me. I’d do anything for you, you’re the one person my heart belongs to. I love you so much but-“ I began, until a crash from the reception desk took hold of my senses and I realised no one was behind there – everyone must be outside for the school firework display, I had completely forgot all about the event. The chair was clearly empty but the sound of rustling still lingered underneath the desk. Chelsea was mortified by whatever was underneath the desk as she had a better view of what was hiding. Her eyes became darkened over and her face was pale, she looked like she was attempting to mutter an outburst, which frightened me even more.
Eyes of disturbing qualities appeared from under the reception desk while the luminous light of the fireworks burst through the dark sky, shooting rays through the windows of the entrance door and lighting up the face of a boy, a familiar teenage boy with teeth clenched and a face twisted strangely that glared directly at me.
A shotgun pointed at my frightened face and the boy smirked when I caught sight of the weapon. He glared perniciously at my freaked out features and his index finger held tightly onto the trigger.
Bradley shifted the gun closer and Chelsea moved her hands to her face and pushed my shaking hand away, putting her hand over her gasping mouth.
“No teachers and no way out, all alone with my girlfriend. Take one last look at her beautiful face and realise that this is your last moment to live. Kiss her, hug her and I will pull this trigger and kill you like the worthless creature you are … you do not deserve to live. This is my girlfriend and always will be! Step away from her, you’re already a dead man. You disgust me! Goodbye Michael and rather ironically, you will die at the time your last name suggests: winter. A cold, lonely death … you’ll always be alone.” Bradley snapped with venom in his vile words and wrapped his index finger around the trigger, releasing a wave of smoke and a metal bullet soaring through the quiet atmosphere and crying violently through the air.
The bullet struck me, causing me to stumble backwards and cry in pain. Bradley ran over, he wrapped his arms around Chelsea’s waist and … kissed her. Tears streamed down her face and her eyes became wide. I lay there, gawping in horror at the blood gushing out of my wound and mainly at what was happening above me.
Chelsea closed her eyes and for a moment and I thought she was enjoying it! That is until she struck him across the face and pushed him away, as he fell to the floor his finger slipped and the trigger was pressured. What happened next made my days dark for the rest of my life. The bullet shot through Chelsea’s stomach and out her back. She fell to the floor, coughing and spluttering. I was dead inside.

Preparing to deal with a disaster is like going off a ski jump. If you put off the planning until things start happening, it’s far too late to make much of a difference. Once you’re headed down that ski jump, the time for planning and preparation is over and you may already be dead …

I awoke from my everlasting concussion. The unfamiliarity about where I was lying was clear, I was in a different bed and a strange aroma lingered about the place: a mixture of chemicals and a musty scent. The temperature has also risen as well as the continuous dialogue. Where was I? Maybe I was in one of the classrooms – were there beds in any of my school classrooms?
I heard a constant beeping, high-pitched and continuous. It dragged on for a couple of seconds which at that point I felt like a glacier then it began concluding constant beeping again, which made me feel like a fire inside.
I attempted to speak but my voice was a dry gasp. I saw two women in white coats looking down at me with stern expressions and looked quite worried. The one on the left had brown hair tied back in a bun with fixed blue eyes and a small yet pointy nose making her face frighteningly noticeable. The one on the right had jet-black hair, long and curly and was smiling uncertainly; she looked friendly and familiar for some strange reason. Her blue tie hung over me, swinging like a hypnotising device.
My eyelids flickered like faulty electricity and finally closed, shutting out the precious light. Flickers of conversation continued…
“I’m afraid the diagnosis of this child … what’s his name?” After some hesitation, the doctor on the left continued, “ah, Michael. Well, his inner-organs are faltering slowly, especially his small intestine as the bullet shot straight through it and is lodged near his hip bones.”
“A patient today had a silver bullet shot straight through her trachea, she is in the ‘Accident & Emergency’ ward now and the prediction is that she has only a short time left to live, which was the most difficult situation of my first day.” The doctor on the right said. I began to quiver violently like a volcano before it erupts with mass lava. I was worried that I had a doctor with not much experience, so she may not know how to remove the bullet from my hipbone.
I dare not look down in case the bullet has caused a lot of bleeding. I fear it has! I can feel a pulsing pain in my abdomen increasing up to my heaving heart.
I heard a constant tapping on the floor as one of the doctors had moved to the side of the front of the bed, where my head lay. She examined my facial expressions then the wound, “We will need a final evaluation, and my team are down stairs and should be able to start the operation at approximately 3:30 P.M, mid day. He seems in a deep sleep.” The scratchy voice of the doctor muttered. She is obviously not qualified to recognise whether patients are in a deep sleep or not!
The other doctor leaned in closely to the wound as I could feel heavy breathing on my damaged skin, “too much blood loss. Anymore and there is a close chance to death.”
The word lingered in my mind, repeating itself in a dark voice. I need to get out of here immediately! My phobias are: spiders, bees and operations!
Both the doctor’s shoes tapped against the hard floor, becoming fainter with every step. They exited the room, leaving behind a hollow silence. The word ‘DEATH’ flew around in my mind. What happened?
I put my hands to my head and sat up on the bed, looking through my mind at the previous events. I remember a gun, which isn’t much help, as I know I’ve been shot. I remember a twisted face; the face is now a blur in my memory and doesn’t seem to be familiar although I feel as if I’ve known him for years.
I squinted at the far end of the room, my memory flickering on and off. One of the doctors came back in and as they strolled through the door, the door knocked a transparent glass ornament on a wood cabinet soaring towards the floor, crashing into millions of pieces. Ominous glass glistened in the air and landed with a ‘ding’ sound.
As the glass crashed to the floor, a bang erupted and something clicked in my brain. The room was spinning and a sickening feeling lay deep in my stomach. Maybe I was hallucinating. I hope I was. Everything seemed irregular yet the previous events seemed to take over the present in my head.
I saw everything clearly now. Chelsea … was shot and taken to ‘Accident & Emergency hospital ward’ yesterday. Had it been that long ago?
Then I remembered what the doctor had said. Chelsea has two hours left to live … I will never hear her voice again … unless I make it in time.

2:40 P.M – No doctors, no company, all by myself. I got out of bed, throbbing pain in my wound and a keen desire to escape. I looked around anxiously at an escape route. The walls and ceiling were pale white, swallowing the vibrant colours of the bed covers (glistening green), the door (bleak brown) and the ornaments of a variety of crying colours (black, grey and crystal clear). The room had a scent of unwholesomeness with a quiet atmosphere.
Window: a small gap yet I could smash the window and make a rather dangerous escape, although, the windows may be alarmed.
A tube hung from my wrist, digging into my skin and dangled through the air and across the shiny floor of the hospital ward. It hung like a spectre of my life, a guardian of my freedom; this would keep me alive, I’d better be careful. I think it is called a drip, I’m not entirely sure. I grabbed hold of my clothes and shoved them on underneath my hospital robe.
I glanced panting over at the small gap in the window and at a wooden chair, it grabbed my attention and my focus. I NEED TO ESCAPE, even if I die.
I rushed towards the window, my hospital robe dangling behind me and so was my fear. The chair sat underneath the windowsill and as I heaved it up over my shoulder, I noticed continuous rooftops all across the city. I realised I was in London, Big Ben’s clock glistened in the summer sun and the building reaching to the sky, despite it being not as big as other buildings in the area.
I lived, as well as my friends, in Staffordshire. It was a peaceful place, filled with glee and a safe environment.
I ran backwards and then, hesitating for a few seconds, I sprinted as fast as my feet would carry me towards the double glazed window. I heaved the chair legs against the glass and one layer of the double-glazing smashed into the air. The noise seemed to be strangely unnoticeable to the staff of the ward, they took no notice and anyway, they were halfway down the hall.
I backed away and then threw myself at the next layer of glass, letting out a cry of anger and worry that I’d get caught. The next layer flew into my unprotected eyes; I covered them with my hands, crying in pain. The mirror next to the window showed my eyes being red and sore but my vision still seemed able to function, despite water leaking from my eyes: terrible tears which contained enzymes. No alarm erupted: I was safe.
The cold air struck the perspiration on my face, cooling my stress and temperature. I felt calm and free; this is what success feels like.
I clambered through the broken window and pushed myself onto the outdoor windowsill. I stared down in astonishment, I didn’t realise I was so high up and the cars seemed like speeding dots on the road which was like a pencil line from this distance.
My heart thumped against my chest, the windowsill was so narrow and steep and I was counting the seconds until I fell. Alongside me was a rooftop, quite a far distance away yet possibly jumpable. Why am I assuming this is going to be easy? I’m going to fall to my death!
I closed my eyes, a risky move and also because the stinging was unbearable.
The rooftop was layered with a thick placement of tarmac, which would cushion my fall – if I made it to the other side!
The blood in my veins stopped, my blood went cold just as that boy’s had that night years ago when he kidnapped me and threw me into a raging river. Ice cubes ran through my veins and my mouth became dry and cold. I felt feint and my eyes were refusing to open again: they had become comfortable closed.
Oxygen no longer entered my lungs, its existence was denied. I was dieing inside and I only have an hour left until Chelsea is as cold as I am now. All the happy memories with her will haunt my life.
My legs pulled me across through the air before I realised what I was doing. I was soaring, leaping to either my death or sweet salvation to save the love of my life. The creeping cold overwhelmed me as I soared slowly downwards. Was I going to land on cushiony tarmac or concrete below: to my death? I reached midair and my life stopped.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –


I was standing below an erupting beast of lava, its mountainous shape and amazing height frightening me yet amazing me. It’s active, it’s composite and it’s exploding with sprays of burning liquid (lava) and showers of ash. I shivered with discomfort and increasing fear.
All the houses were gone. All the population were gone. The lava rushed down through the slope on the mountain and acted like a powerful wave above me and streamed downwards at a great speed, overwhelming me with fear and a raise in temperature. The lava took over me and my skin no longer clung to my skeleton.

I awoke from my everlasting nightmare. I couldn’t see, my eyes were darkened over and my vision as blurred as stained glass. My insides were on fire and my skin was producing enough sweat to fill a river.
Steam was coming off all the fabric in the apartment, including me! Tess was sprawled across the floor, fainted and full of fear.
There must be a way out of here. The window is a bit too risky as the distance to the floor is exceedingly dangerous!
I watched Tess’ eyes flicker but not open, maybe I could leave her behind. She wouldn’t mind, would she?
After this I’m moving house, seriously this place is a death trap! Maybe I could move to one of those care houses where you have people to care for you and get you anything you want. What a life!
I watched the door with anxiety; there must be a way to access freedom. I thought over all the possible ways of escape and came to a final solution.
I lifted the unconscious body of my best friend over my shoulder. Tess was really heavy and my shoulders felt as if they were crying.
The heat had made my concentration levels fail and my strength disappeared from the temperature rising dangerously high.
I stumbled over to the wooden door, I attempted to clasp the handle but a circular dark red burn appeared on my outstretched palm as the metal handle was as hot as the sun’s surface (biased).
I banged continuously with my free hand, the other held around Tess’ waist, against the wooden death door. Wood isn’t a good conductor of heat so it wouldn’t have burned me.
I let out a bellow of fear as worry overwhelmed me: how would I escape? Would my blood boil in here and cause me to die? Tears streamed down my frightened face of fear from the uncanny position I was in. I followed my instinct and leapt for the axe fixed to the wall and shielded by a layer of glimmering glass erupting sequential steam from its surface.
Tess was being quite obsequious as I hammered the palm of my hand against the glass; it was very unctuous and as I hit it violently, it glimmered an ominous violet colour from the fire hissing on the thermostat. Shards of glass were free from their still and fixed form as one of my final hits caused the glass to break, making me smile that I’d achieved something.
A hissing sound powered itself through the silence of the room, overtaking the sickening silence and hissing like an angry snake waiting to feed on its prey and ravage it violently with its teeth bared. The fire was becoming as violent as a rainstorm with crazed flashes of luminous bright yellow jagged lines called lightening shooting through the sky continuously.
I held onto Tess’ wrist as reassurance that I was not alone. My insides clenched like a fist when I realised that Tess’ heart rate had stopped. She made no movement whatsoever, her face was pale and her pulse had no activity. I feared she was dead. My best friend was gone.
With the hand clenching the axe I hit the wooden door that was imprisoning me in Hell. The sharp, red point made a small incision in the dark wood, which pressured me into thinking that I need to put more force into it if I wanted to escape.
I lay Tess down on the steaming wooden floor that looked like an ice rink from its shining surface. Her long, straight dark brown hair flew by her side as she fell to the floor, and her distant expression frightened me.
“Don’t worry, Tess; I’m going to get you out of here.” I said defiantly. The red rubber handle of the axe burned into my skin as I hit, with massive and impressive force, the wood of the automatically locked door.
I had caused a small hole in the wood and a lighter colour of split wood shards showed through. I hit the wood again, swinging the axe over my shoulder and cutting it through the air to the point where a loud ‘BANG’ would sound as the metal beat against the oak wood.
Many shards of wood pointed in my direction from the gaping hole now in the door. It was still not enough to climb through, but it was close. It was getting identical to the same amount of space as the window I got through at my previous house with my civil parents.
I beat against the wood again with the axe then tried to pry open the gap with my fingers, it was painful but worth it as the gap started to exceed in width and was now big enough for my body to fit through, although I was not entirely sure about Tess. A friend first is always the way to go, sadly.
I pushed myself through the gap and was swept with a strong, cool breeze, which overwhelmed me with the French expression of déjà vu.
I got through very easily in one attempt but Tess still lay on the other side of the door with her heartbeat inactive. I had pity for her: do I risk my own precious life and save her? Or should I run away before the situation gets worse?
What has she ever done for me, anyway? In my opinion, it would be best to leave this problem to someone else! With depression running my life, friends aren’t important to me at all!


Obviously I had to move house, the fire department arrived straight after the incident as well as the siren of the ambulance echoing throughout the streets.
Tess was taken to the hospital and I still haven’t heard any news about whether she is well and will live or if her time has passed. I feel guilty about all this; maybe if I’d saved her she would not be as bad as she is now.
While Tess lay in the warmth of the hospital bed, whether she could feel the warmth or not, I was standing out in the icy cold weather of the streets. The fire occurred yesterday and I was where it all had happened, I looked back at the apartment building, well at least that’s what it used to be two days ago, now half the building seemed to be black and in ruin with red banners around the dangerous areas of the building.
I lived in that ruined apartment for two years, it was my home and it was full of happy memories. I grimaced at the thought of the past events such as the time Tess and I ambushed our neighbours with their greatest phobia: water which we stored in balloons and threw it at our five grumpy neighbours as they were going to sign a document that would get us taken out of our apartment, we laughed about it in the end. Then I was overwhelmed with the thought of murder, when I had killed the old man with Michael from the dramatic effects of alcohol. I frowned at the thought of murder and I think it has occurred again. Tess could be gone.
The whole experience flashed by in my head, different images and speech running through my head and cursing me for my whole, miserable life. Why did I kill someone with a golf club?
A yellow flash went by near the end of the street, shooting down the long winding road. The houses along this abandoned road were all identical: the lawns were cut identically, with the same lawn ornaments dotted around the side of the lawn all in the same place; the same roof tiles were the same with the same long, dark and spiralled chimney producing grey smoke into the atmosphere; the same wood type on the front and back doors and an identical sized gaping hole underneath the front window.
The taxi pulled up onto the curb of the never-ending pathway, which lead down a steep hill and never stopped. A man with blue gleaming eyes and shining blonde hair with streaks of brown down the middle winked at me and leaned backwards and only one hand lay on the wheel. His complexion frightened me, knowing that I’d be in the back of this car for five long, boring hours.
“Where you going then, miss? Anywhere you like as long as it is not out of the boundaries of this country.” The taxi driver chuckled to himself. I just simply nodded in confusion.
The taxi was completely yellow, despite the wheels being black and the windows transparent and also the slogan: ‘TAXIS are the way to go. Taxi fares now half price!’ printed along the left-hand side in red ink.
I pulled the yellow door handle towards me and the door clicked open, revealing two white leather seats. I jumped in and pulled the snake-like seatbelt over me and clicked it into the compartment on the other side of me.
“Dead Oak Farm on Cold Street, please. Now, how much would that be? Sorry, my math skills aren’t exactly the best they can be.” I muttered, looking ahead at the taxi driver.
“That will be thirty three pounds and fifty pence, please. Where have I heard the name of that farm before? It sounds strangely familiar …” the taxi driver stuttered, putting his hand on his chin.
“It was in the local papers, mainly the front page or even the obituaries. There have been some rather mysterious deaths happening there. It’s family history so I’m not too bothered about it.” I muttered in reply.
The taxi driver’s face altered into a pale sheet of paper. I passed him the money and as our hands touched, I thought I was touching an iceberg until I realised it was a rather pale looking and shaking hand.
“I can’t take you there. Why would you want to go a p-p-place like that?” The taxi driver exclaimed. He turned away to look ahead down road on a steep hill, avoiding eye contact with me.
My squinting eyes looked out of the window; I was thinking over my family history: my grandfather and my grandmother moved to a farm when I was seven-years-old and ever since they moved, strange things started to happen involving deaths and different tectonic disasters occurring. My nephew, whom lived with them, died in a car accident (the engine had been tampered with, so he endeavoured sabotage) while searching for help because of the fact that his brother had been strangled in the night.
The engine started and I lurched forward as the car sped along the road. I felt a mixture of anxiety, confusion and excruciating pain including the common emotion I encounter: FEAR.


The journey seemed to go on forever. We had to go around the sides of mountains, cross and go underneath bridges, enter forests of creepy qualities and encounter riots near a local hospital.
Finally, the taxi drove beside a crop field in which a small cottage lay with stables and fences to confine farm animals. It was amazing; it was the best farm I’d come across in my life. The cottage looked so modern, although the roof was made of hay, clay and gold tiles. The door was layered with two silver ovals on each side and it had perfect painted pictures of farm animals on the door, it was like looking at a photograph.
The house itself consisted of four floors that were equivalent to a five star hotel. It was like looking at a house in Heaven. There were two large glass windows on the sixth floor, which revealed everything in that room a mile away. The walls were painted a pyramid yellow colour and small grey statues of mythical creatures, mainly dragons, stood in a motionless form with fangs bared and eyes that could looked right through you, hiding around a four-poster bed. I was only in a car and I noticed these things.
Rectangular tiles with engraved letters (‘DARK’ ‘OAK’ ‘FARM’) were fixed above the archway entrance as we pulled onto the gravel filled driveway.
For some peculiar reason, a chill swept over me the second we crossed the archway, not a chill that you’d get from standing in a freezer for six hours (which would probably make you frozen!), but a chill you’d get if you entered an unfamiliar place at an unfamiliar time with an unfamiliar feeling, like going to a job interview: you feel like running for your life!
A creeping draught overwhelmed me and a feeling of ‘You are not alone’ took my senses hostage.


When I met the grandparents: Grandfather Joey had grey short hair that was matted and similar to hay, he seemed kind yet his complexion was cold and pale. He greeted me with a stare, then shook my hand, which altered the stare and frown into a cheerful stare and a familiar smile. I believe his first words to me were: ‘pig duty: 9:00A.M, cow cleaning: 11:45A.M and the rest of the chores will be decided. Oh, and one more thing, keep clear of the attic on the sixth floor; if I catch you anywhere near there, there will be consequences.” That was when he appeared at the automatic doors at the front of the house, carrying a list that probably would have reached the archway entrance if it weren’t folded up.
When I met Grandmother Rose, she forced a basketful of different types of chocolates and three roses into my chest. I looked down at them in awe and said defiantly: “Thank you, both of you, for letting me stay in your humble home. But why, may I ask, do I have to stay clear of the attic?” Bewilderment overwhelmed me once more.
“That is a matter for another day. You shall also have this,” She held out a sharp point hidden within a red rubber casing, “It is a penknife, it is to make sure that you are safe here. There are many peculiar people around these parts, especially the field nearby, some people go there to burn dead crops, and I find it is quite irritating really.” Rose muttered, which was close to a shout. Rose had a sweet and innocent face, her grey hair was tied away in a bun and she wore a green cardigan with blue denim jeans. Her face was quite chubby, as well as her arms, and she had a pointy yet small nose and glaring green eyes. I pocketed the penknife whilst admiring her features.
“To add something crucial about your stay here, you’re bedroom will be the fourth floor library. No where else!” Joey said and chuckled lightly. He looked pale with three scars across his right cheek in the shape of a curved dark violet banana. His arms were skinny and alike two sticks, as well as his face being sunken in and disgustingly, his cheekbones were visible and the outline of his skull surprising stuck out.
“Oh, I do hope your stay here will be … most enjoyable. I’m sure the week you stay here will go by in a slash,” Rose said, “Your heart will lift when you stay here, dear. Your life will seem like luxury but before you exit those doors out of this place; your life will seem like a dead end. You can help yourself to anything, anything you like. Everywhere from those gates to the far woodland is your home for the weeks you stay here. I will send up the newspapers from this week so you can search for a new apartment and you can earn money from chores.”
There was something about the unusual behaviour presented by these two relatives that made me feel hollow inside.
I was taken swiftly through the porch, which went on for miles and had portraits of our past relatives that were now deceased, all except one, which surprised me. There was a portrait of me under the column of: ‘Deceased and forgotten’ (I looked quite perky in my picture and I wasn’t smiling, my face was pale and drooped as well as my eyes piercing through the painting and out into the corridor, it was me one year younger!). I was about to open my mouth to ask a question about it, but I was dragged swiftly once more and through the archway entrance into the magnificent living room.
The luxurious living room was painted a beautiful elegant gold colour with red roses painted every few centimetres in a zigzag pattern. The radiant colours of the furniture caused my eyes to flicker with amazement and the reflection of a mixture of colours from around the room filled my anticipation with a new quality. The sofa was a crying blue colour, I thought it may have been indigo blue, but what do I know? I hated Art Class in college; I had to do a collage of my college! How annoyingly ironic!
A huge flat screen plasma television stood at the side of the room, fixed to the wall with the local news on. Joey let me go and I caught a glimpse of the screen and a little speech before they hurried me along with a glare and a swift of the hand to indicate which way to go.
The ceiling was a hazel colour but had splotches of dried water in anonymous places, which seemed invisible from the blending of colours. I looked ahead to a dark, winding corridor filled with barely lit candles. Sitting on the ledge of the lit candles was a black cat: dark and dramatically fluffy with yellow glaring eyes and fangs permanently bared, curved and pointing forwards like the tusks of a woolly mammoth but smaller. Its tail curved like a river’s meander and its claws fixed into the ledge, which resulted in the wood becoming dented.
The cat hissed at me as I passed it and the archway corridor continued on with only the light of candles and the eyes of terror from the famished feline (it continually licked its lips when it glared at me, which led a shiver down my spine).
Many wooden, old doors passed me at my right-hand side with the room description carved neatly into the burgundy wood. I believe I passed ninety-three rooms and that was only on the first floor! Some room descriptions frightened me, especially: Chopping room and had a carved picture of a guillotine underneath it. Hopefully, it is used for chopping vegetables.
“Why is there a chopping room?” I asked as we hurried along.
“Oh, that room has an historical value. During the French revolution, this room holds numerous makes of guillotines so if one broke, these were used as back-ups.” Rose explained.
When we finally reached the room marked ‘LIBRARY’ I was exceedingly relieved to be free of the disturbing corridors. I wondered how I could sleep in a library which left me bewildered until the squeaky wooden door was pulled forward and brand new light flicked through to us: the sunlight that I had seemed to have forgotten while walking through the surpassing darkness.
Books, books, books were all that caught my vision, all of different coloured spines and jackets. There seemed to be no four-poster bed, no chairs and no electronic equipment. I was quite confounded: where would I sleep? Where would I have entertainment? There wasn’t even a television! You’re a teenager, right, and you get bored: you turn on the television!
As the sunlight swallowed the darkness, I walked into the room that had no walls, well if there were you couldn’t see them as they were hidden by books on shelves; there was even a bookshelf on the ceiling with books resting on the side and a ladder leading up to them.
“Where do I sleep?” I snapped rather vigorously as I spoilt brat would to their father about buying an expensive gift.
“There are bookshelves for that nonsense!” Joey snapped. Rose just seemed to smirk at his reply.
“That nonsense …” I thought for a while, “if you don’t mind me asking but do you ever sleep?”
Afterwards, there was some hesitation.
“Sleeping wastes time and we need a lot of time.” Joey grumbled.
“Weird people,” I said under my breath, “so I have to sleep on the bookshelves?” I muttered. I obviously assumed they were joking, but their answer made me frown.
“There is a spare one over there,” Rose pointed at a narrow bookshelf that resembled the height of a splinter. The room was very small compared to the others, which were huge.
“You’ve got to be kidding me?” I giggled.
“No, of course we’re not.” Rose muttered and stepped out of the door, as well as Joey, but before he left:
“That penknife will come in handy soon, just you wait. Look after yourself here, kid. It’s a dangerous world yet we treat it as if it’s a magical place full of unimaginable wonders. It is a day of bad luck awaiting us tomorrow, that’s what we call Frightening Friday and I’m sure if you live here long enough, you’ll call it the same.” After Joey had finished his confounding speech, I gawped at him, not able to say a word …

Friday 13th
(Bad luck day)

Police sirens got me to sleep last night; they filled the air like the tweeting of birds, but more vigorously. When the police sirens had died down, I heard the sound of shovelling and at one point a tapping of something metal on my window. I was too afraid to look, I was asleep before I even realised. I thought it was probably the cliché of witch-like branches tapping against glass like there was in typical horror movies.
Morning: I had decided to sleep on the windowsill instead of the narrow bookshelf that let the sunlight through from the blocked window by books. It was a typical morning, I brushed my teeth in the mansion sized bathroom, looking in a mirror that filled the whole wall; lay in bed until three in the afternoon and sent messages to my friends I had left behind. This was only a short holiday at my grandparent’s cottage, I would be moving back to say my goodbyes and then leave the country on plane to visit my father and live with him permanently.
It was when I was halfway through sorting out my hair in my bedroom (hyperbole. Do I ever get decent bedrooms? I probably won’t at my father’s mansion either) mirror that I recalled the tapping on my window when I was close to sleep.
I pulled back the curtains and gawped in horror. Scratched on the window, written in backwards so I’d be able to see it, was a threat. Although, it wasn’t just scratched, it had traces of blood in the scratches: ‘if you treasure your life, leave the house.’
I was about to trot downstairs when I heard a blood curdling scream erupting from outside. It was Grandmother Rose.
I pulled open the window and stepped out onto the cold, prickly grass, wearing no socks. I sprinted across the soaking blades of grass and towards where the scream was coming from.
The animals on this farm are as follows: pigs, cows, chickens, horses, ponies and geese. The reason I have listed these animals is because of the fact that my grandmother was standing over a slaughtered pig with the knife still left inside. There wasn’t much blood, there was just a message carved into the pig’s skin: ‘remember what I wrote on your window.’

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

My unexpected last thought was the conversation Chelsea and I had when she broke up with Bradley, for me:
“Why, Chelsea? Why do we have to break up now? Don’t you remember the fun we had? I still have the photographs.” Bradley looked away and wept.
“You sick, sick son of wimp!” I exclaimed and almost hit him but Chelsea held me back and kissed me again.
“It wasn’t anything like that,” Chelsea said as she broke away from the kiss.
“It was meaningful, moving days in the summer holidays where we spent our finest moments together.” Bradley sighed.
“You seriously went out with this freak?” I asked angrily with a hint of bewilderment.
“Well, he was a good kisser and … he looked like Leonardo Dicaprio.” Chelsea giggled.
“You went out for him ‘cause of that? Why do you like me then, huh? Do I look like Leonardo Dicaprio?” I asked, annoyed.
“No … you look more like … Tom Hanks.” Chelsea replied uncertainly.
“Tom Hanks? Tom Hanks? Is that why you’re going out with me? Because I resemble someone who could be the next Godfather!” I exclaimed.
“Well, not really. You’re a cross between Christopher Walken and Tom Hanks, really.” Chelsea said quietly.
“Can we forget the cast of ‘Catch me if you can’ and talk seriously, please? Why are you going out with me?” I asked, consequently and seriously.
“Because … I love you and think you’re … a good catch!” Chelsea smiled uncertainly.
“I’m not a bloody fish, Chelsea! I’ll see you at the fireworks display, we can talk then.” I walked down the hall and foolishly left Chelsea alone with her ex-boyfriend.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

”What did I tell you,” Joey muttered, standing next to my grandmother and looking at the pig with a look of boredom, “today is Frightening Friday the Thirteenth, after all.”
Friday the Thirteenth seemed like an annual holiday to granddad, just like Christmas but darker.
“What did it write on your window, dear?” Rose asked. I ignored her mutter and stared down at the slaughtered pig with disgust. I did not reply.

Later that day, I found myself wandering the halls, looking for adventure and excitement. I wasn’t allowed upstairs, only here, where it seemed dull and boring except for the stalker of the night with twisted fangs that seemed to follow me around everywhere. It had passed midnight before I realised I’d strolled around the slim corridors nineteen times, where I looked up at the attic door three times, wondering what could cause so much commotion. Every time I even glanced up at it, the cat would leap up and claw me in the back, hissing continuously. I would sometimes curse at the cat for that. He was one reason why my life at that dull place was so frightening.
A thumping in the attic made me look up when I passed it once more, which I regretted when I got a stab in the back by the cat. I really need to ask Rose and Joey what that stupid cat’s name is.
What could be living in that attic? Maybe it was a mouse or rat? But could a rodent make a thumping sound which was that loud and deafening?
The thumping was replaced with a scratching sound that even made the cat run wild back down the corridor.
I heard footsteps and the sound of a lock clicking and then the most unlikely thing happened. The wooden attic door swung open and the ladder fell before me before I even realised it. It fell hurtling towards my shoulder and caused a stabbing pain as it dug into my shoulder blade like a knife. I collapsed to the floor, as well as the ladder and my vision went black.
I clambered laboriously to my feet and stared upwards with my vision jerking left to right and then shot upwards. I had excruciating pain shooting up and down my left arm as my shoulder pulsed and tickled.
Darkness was above in the attic entrance and a flashing red light shot like a bullet through the dark. I watched as the light suddenly stopped flickering and the darkness replaced itself in its familiar home.
I climbed the wooden ladder, taking one careful step at a time. I reached the top of the ladder and looked across, waiting for my eyes to adjust, hoping that they wouldn’t adjust to something as horrendous as I expected. Then something appeared. My mouth dropped open and my face became pale. Why is this happening?

I woke up hot and flustered with perspiration everywhere! I felt like an oven’s surface on the outside but an ice cube on the inside. The moonlight’s reflection went through the scratched message and reflected onto my white quilt cover in a scarlet colour.
I just hope that I was dreaming because someone (or something) in that attic caused my whole life to flash before my eyes.
The person, or thing, looked very familiar, despite the darkness hiding most of its appearance.
I closed my eyes, swallowing my fears and wishing for morning to come and no more atrocious problems occurring at Dark Oak Farm. I felt numb with horror.


My sister had come to visit us at the farm. Amethyst, my eldest sister, had a Mercedes car, a job as a lawyer and a free way of running life. The envious tension between us is inconceivable and inevitable every time she brags about it!
She had to live in the fruit room for two days, which wasn’t really that comfortable, although she had a soft basket to sleep on. It had every type of fruit all in barrels and baskets placed around the room and it was bigger than the library. My grandparents must like to eat more than read, I agree with them, I suppose.
Amethyst and I raced each other down the corridor and obviously she won, tapping me on the shoulder when she had her victory.
We sprinted into the kitchen to see our grandparents sitting around the wooden table.
“You get the first week to relax then chores are on Monday, is that alright?” Rose asked me.
“Of course it is alright!” Joey replied, rather rudely.
The kitchen had a small wooden table in the middle of the room, a light blue coloured floor and curtains. The kitchen had sixteen cupboards and drawers and two silver sinks dotted around the side of the large kitchen all in the same light blue colour.
I tickled Amethyst as she walked to her seat and she tickled me back over the table. Just simple child’s play: a kid’s game.
“Why does she get a bigger room than me where she can eat healthily when I have a room full of boring books?” I asked during laughing hysterically from being tickled. We were like five-year-olds.
“The reason you live in the library is because it is the smallest yet safest room in the house. You have six layers of thick glass on your window and secure ceilings, what more could you want?” Rose uttered, letting out a disappointed sigh.
“I want to have fun,” I laughed again when my sister tickled me on the arm, “not to be safe.”
“You won’t think that way when you look in the attic. By the way, did you go in there last night because I’m sure I heard the door open from the sixth floor?” Rose muttered, “You know how strict we are about that attic, Kathy.”
“Nope, I was in m-my r-r-room all-night.” I stuttered nervously, trying not to break perspiration.
“Good …” Joey grumbled, while digging into his cereal in unison with Rose.
My mobile phone in my pocket erupted with a loud noise as I had received a phone call. It startled Rose and Joey as they threw their cereal to the floor, the glass bowl smashing and the milk soaring across the table.
Joey reached over as I took the phone out of my pocket, swiping it out of my hand and throwing it out of the open window and into the pond where sparks shot up out of the water.
“Won’t that kill the fish?” Amethyst muttered, giving him a disconcerting look.
“There is no need for phones in this house. We hate them and I think you’ll find that you don’t need a phone when the worst comes.” Joey grumbled, “Now clean up this mess!”
I gawped out of the window at the no longer spark filled area. My only means of communication was gone.
We had to get cloths and clean every part of the kitchen as a part of our chores. We were talking about home, the way our parents used to be so horrible and that we were lucky not to be abused again.
“Dad always used to hurt me and you were Mum’s prey. She liked to hit us in the face.” Amethyst looked down at the floor she was kneeling on, scrubbing the clean floor with a layer of wax, “Remember that we would always go to West Park and swing on the swings to relieve our pain? Did you still go there and swing after I left?”
“Er … I suppose … no.” I lied when I knew perfectly well what I did at West Park.
Rose entered the Kitchen, looking down at us like dirt. I stood up and washed my hands in the sink. “Rose, I’ve been wondering for a while, what is the name of that evil cat that stalks me?”
Rose chuckled hollowly. “His name is ‘Trepidation Apprehension the third’.”
“That’s a long name. What does it mean?” Amethyst asked before I could. Amethyst had long, curly brown hair with lines of blonde through it and a small face. She was quite tall with really skinny arms and a flat stomach and eyes that looked like they were always crying.
“Trepidation is another word for horror and he seems to apprehend horrific characteristics, which is the cat’s middle name.”
“Why is he the third?” I asked.
“Oh, that is because the other two seemed to enjoy going up into the attic. They made a grave mistake, if you understand what I mean.” Rose said whilst cleaning the dishes and handing them to me to dry.
“No, I don’t.” I sighed.
“Yes, I think I do. You’ve used a play on words: a pun, which they have made a terrible mistake which you said as a ‘grave mistake’ which also refers to their death as being in a grave. A disturbing pun …” Amethyst said, swinging her hair with her hands, she always seemed to do that when she believed she was being smart.
Rose strolled out of the room and into the lonely corridors as Granddad dug holes with a shovel outside. After six minutes, the digging ceased.
When I was lying on the windowsill that night, I looked out of the window at the garden that stretched on for miles until it finally came to a fence which led onto a field where smoke from burning never ceased.
Sleeping that night was as difficult as all the others, I felt like a rock was weighing me down but I still could not sleep, despite my clear tiredness.
My heart leapt up to my mouth when I felt claws dig into my quilt cover. I looked into the angry yellow eyes of the cat.
“Hey T.A.T,” I muttered quietly. T.A.T was what I called the cat as it was short for Trepidation Apprehension Third and also rhymed with cat, “why are you here?”
T.A.T just simply purred quietly, although it sounded too low and creaky for a normal purr.
“I wish I knew what was going on here. I really do.” I stroked the cat and he looked up at me in frustration and overwhelming anger.
I reached down, searching the floor for today’s newspaper. When I finally found it, I read quickly through the front page. It titled: ‘MASS MURDERER ESCAPES FROM PRISON: 23 deaths recorded.’
I stared at the picture next to the text, studying it and he had a face of far off wonderment, yet he frowned and had six scars on his nose and one going through his lip. He had dark hair, but it was quite difficult to justify, as the picture was black-and-white as was the article’s font.

The murderer, Jack Execrate, had escaped from Newly Pass Prison yesterday at approximately 6:45 A.M and strolled through the countryside, murdering twenty of the public as revenge and anger release.
He was later seen today in West Park, studying blood stained broken glass, (Which gave me the shivers) and was photographed as he sprinted out of sight once more at 4:50 P.M.
It is predicted that he is moving to the north of Staffordshire towards the main farmland areas.
Jack Execrate is a very violent and aggressive character, which will stop at nothing but to murder the public as his revenge on the government, as the situation is believed. Jack Execrate is rather caustic and if sighted must be reported to the police immediately … (continued on page 5)

That night I had a nightmare, a horrible nightmare involving someone very dear to me. I hope, I hope in my heart, that it is not true.


I was woken up by Amethyst, she shook me and my eyes squinted open. I was fast asleep and it was the best sleep I’d had in years.
“Wake up, wake up, sleepy head.” Amethyst sang as I lifted my head up and stared at her angrily. T.A.T had gone.
I looked over at my alarm clock; it was two ‘o’ clock in the morning. Amethyst turned my head to my carpet and I stared in horror. A dead chicken lay there dead. Its blood was used to write another message: “Leave now before it is too late.”

“We need to go to the attic, now.” Amethyst said as lightning strikes shot through the sky and illuminated the room, making the dead animal light up. I didn’t say a word. I let her drag me out of the room and down the dark corridors, filled with the sound of lightning strikes.
After half an hour of running, we came to the attic door above us on the ceiling.
“How did I open it last time?” I asked myself.
“Were there any buttons or switches?” Amethyst whimpered.
“I don’t think so; I think someone up there opened it themselves.”
“What do you mean ‘someone up there’?” Amethyst asked unrelentingly.
There was a click as the lock opened and the door swung forward, the ladder soared down to the floor and fortunately missing both of us.
A foot appeared on the top step of the ladder, then another as it became two legs and they stepped down the ladder, its black shoes glinting in the light.
Amethyst stared in horror ahead at the slaughtered black-and-white cow that had just become visible from the lightning light. The blood message on the illuminated left wall read: ‘you are next to die.’
Stepping down the stairs was a woman, her face twisted and distraught as she looked into my eyes. I took away her gaze and looked at Amethyst as her mouth dropped open and looked stunned, shocked and still.
Looking down at us was the face of a man whose main purpose in life is to torture and torment people. The atrocious twisted face of a murderer looked down at me.
I was numb with fear and horror and I couldn’t feel my legs or arms. My life was floating away, leaving me below in a place where happiness does not exist. I was dead inside.
“Girls, look.” A voice came from the darkness behind the ladder: Rose’s voice, “He will cause no harm to you, we’ve been hiding him from the police. He’s our son. He may have left corpses around the farm but only to scare you away – he was afraid of our attention being stolen by a suicidal newcomer. Please, stay … we will cause you no harm.”
I heard Amethyst whisper ‘suicidal?’ under her breath in disgust.
We ran down the corridor, sprinting away from the creature behind us. We ran into the nearest door, trapping it outside in the corridor. We pressed against the door on the inside of the room, blocking the sudden pressure by the murderer on the other side of the door.
The shock of a guillotine made me realise we were in the chopping room as we clambered towards the huge window and passed the huge guillotine that reached the ceiling. Amethyst ran against the glass and shards of it flew in every direction and cut her face. I hadn’t realised it before but she had swiped the cat into her arms, its teeth still bared and hissed continuously at me.
I ran through the smashed glass and out into the cold, following my twenty-three-year-old sister.
“You can’t take their cat! It belongs to them!” I snapped as we sprinted across the gravel, making crunching sounds as our shoes kicked the gravel in numerous directions like the glass shards.
“I really love this cat, it is sweet.” Amethyst muttered. I looked at her in surprise as we ran to her red Mercedes car parked near the archway entrance.
“You’ll regret this!” The murderer repeated.
We left the murderer behind and headed towards freedom, getting into the Mercedes car and driving away down the long and winding road. I turned around on the leather seat, wearing no seat belt, and looked out the back window at the outline of the figure. He had stopped.
“Well, we got out of that one easy enough, didn’t we?” I asked.
“You must be … joking.” Amethyst panted then laughed with joy.
We turned a corner and shot down the road, my heart was beating as fast as the lightning striking to the Earth.
“Before Granddad threw my phone out of the window, I had received a message that said my two of my friends are in hospital. They are close to … death.” I cried into my hands and Amethyst looked over woefully, pulling my hands away from my face to see blood shot eyes.
“Keep your hands on the wheel, sis.” I said shrilly.
“Oh yes, of course.” She leaned back over and took hold of the wheel, swinging across to the left.
“Does anything in my life go right? We’ve just been chased by a mass murderer, our parents abuse us, my friends are going to die, and I killed someone because of alcohol, I smoke and I self harm with glass!” I whimpered angrily.
“Whoa, back up a second here, sis. You need to be happy about your life and everyone in it. You’ve always been there for me. I love you, sis. You mean everything to me and … that is why you have to get out of the car.”
“What?” I looked out of the window at the local hospital where Tess and Drake lay inside, “Why can’t I come with you?”
“You know why because you know what is going to happen to me. It was I in that nightmare. You cried my name. Fate must take its course.” Amethyst muttered.
How was I supposed to know this was all a trick?
From the previous events, I never thought hope would appear in my life again. My twisted grandparents hiding the fact that their first son is a murderer by locking him in the attic so he can cause no harm, despite the corpses of the farm animals scattered around the farm from the murderer escaping. He didn’t want the attention of his parents stolen by a suicidal new comer, so he sent warnings. Life has no boundaries.
I stepped out of the car, closing the door. I looked into her eyes in horror and before she drove away, I realised she wore no seatbelt. My nightmare will come true and there is nothing I can do about it.



A local girl by the name of Amethyst Sarah Kimberley, 23, deceased yesterday in a car crash on the Stone Road. She drove into a petrol tank at a local petrol station, causing a mass explosion and an erupting fire, causing the deaths of fifteen people near the petrol station.
Amethyst was travelling with her cat, unnamed and unknown, which was killed also by the fire from the explosion.
Amethyst has lived a full life, including being involved in politics in court as a reliable lawyer.
Her main purpose in life was to state her opinion about the environment and ensure the ozone layer was not abused by our daily life style, despite the fact she was driving a polluting car.
She was a crucial person of society and was loved by all; she will be missed and cherished forever like a diamond, as her name indicates.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

I swayed in midair for a few seconds, with my eyes fixed shut, before landing through the air and bouncing on something soft and rubber. I assumed it was air resistance I was tackling until my feet fixed to the floor.
My frown and frightened face was replaced with a smile and a slight smirk. I was safe.
I heard the sound of wheels squeaking above me, coming out of the hospital window. They could be wondering where I was but I didn’t care because I needed to escape. Operations scared me!
There was a big drop from here to the ground and I knew if I jumped from here, the bones in my legs would break and I’d be carried back to hospital.
Then I spotted a van not far below and I could quite easily jump onto the roof of the van and make it to safety. I’d be free again!
I leaped onto the back of the red van, my feet pulsing with increasing pain, and then I jumped down to the hard concrete.
I was free to roam the streets and find my way home sooner or later. I was about to head off on my journey when I spotted the back of someone’s head.
She had curly, blonde and brown hair, which reached down to her hips and had streaks of black near the end of her hair. She was wearing a light blue shirt and dark blue jeans. She looked very familiar in some way; if only she would turn around I’d –
She spun around to see my gawping expression. She ran towards me and jumped into my outstretched arms, hugging me really tight and smiling from ear to ear. My best friend stood before me: Kathy.
“Oh my God, I’d never thought I’d see you again!” She exclaimed with joy, kissing me on the cheek. “Why aren’t you wearing shoes? Your feet look swollen, have you escaped from the hospital?”
I nodded happily, “You know how much I hate hospitals, and if I’d stayed any longer I would have died.”
“And if you stay out of the hospital any longer, you might die. I agree with the hating hospitals thing but not with the fact that you don’t want the operation done. They can help you!” Kathy snapped and then hugged me tightly once more.
“Come on, let’s get out of here,” Kathy smiled and took hold of my hand. We travelled across the countryside, laughing and talking. Kathy told me about her stay with her grandparents and I told her about what happened with Bradley and how I feel about Chelsea.
Later that day, we sat down on the grass. We were laughing so much, counting how many people we were in a relationship with. I only had nine and she had ten.
I leant over and tickled her on her arm when she was looking across the field and at first she frowned
“Sorry, it reminds me of my sister. She was the person I was closest to in my life.” Kathy mumbled, staring down. I put my arm around her and she tickled me when I wasn’t looking, I fell to the ground, laughing and she pinned me down, smiling.
“What are you going to do now?” She asked, giggling.
“That’s not fair, I can’t tickle you.” I muttered, laughing.
“That’s the whole point of pinning you down.” Kathy chuckled.
I sighed and her star necklace dangled down in front of my face and her hair fell forward too, blocking out the light.
Her necklace fell onto my lips and tickled. “I can tickle you anyway, despite pinning you down.” She chuckled.
I pushed her arms away and made her roll along with me and I pinned her down instead. “Who’s the weakling now?” I asked defiantly.
“You are?”
“What? Hey, you’re the one on the ground, here.” I said.
“Fine then, I am.”
“Thank you!” I smiled down at her and she smiled back. I thought about kissing her but decided not to, just in case she was scared and never spoke to me again. I loved her too much as a friend to ruin it now. I’ve known her my whole life: we grew up together. I know I would be cheating on Chelsea if I kissed her but … how is she going to know?
Although, the way she looked at me with her weary smile made me realise I liked her more than a friend.
I lay my hands on her hips and tickled her sides, which made her face come really close to mine. The thought of kissing her crawled back in my head then swept away when she tickled me back and my hand accidentally slipped under her shirt for a second then came back out again. She laughed even more at that.
Then, to ruin it all, her phone alarm sounded and she knew immediately that she had to be at the bus stop to take her to her dad’s house miles away. I’d never see her again. I need to kiss her now.
Just kiss her you idiot! You need to kiss her now! She won’t expect it. She backed away for a second, looking at my nervous face and nervously smiling at me. She has such a beautiful face; you want to kiss her so just kiss her!
“Bye, Michael. I hope I’ll see you again soon. I’ll have to go now, or else I’ll be late.” She stood up and ran across the field, leaving me lying on the floor, looking like a fool.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

Finally, after some time awaiting public transport, the black bus appeared camouflaged by the darkness. All the light in the area was swallowed by the night sky, all except the single street lamp a few metres away and the bright light from the bus ceiling.
There was a sound of pressure being released from the tight bus doors as they clicked and folded open towards me. I trudged up the steps and exchanged money for a ticket; I sat at the back of the bus near the fire exit, the only one present on the bus.
I stared out of the window and everything precious to me flashed by in a blur: firstly, the bus passed my old home, abandoned and forgotten; secondly, the journey went passed West Park, where dreadful memories involving a rope, broken glass and a sharp pole lingered in my mind; thirdly, the hospital, where Tess’ life decision will be decided; Fourthly, the most heartbreaking place of all: the countryside where Michael and me would meet up and talk, laugh and play for our whole lives since this day.
The bus stopped at the traffic lights and tears trickled down my face. I closed my eyes. Powerful rain started to force down to the roof of the bus, like the sharp end of a knife cutting through the air. When I thought of the simile of knives, I remembered the penknife in my pocket.
Was someone calling my name?
The voice sounded familiar, really familiar.
“Kathy, come back! I love you, Kathy!”
My eyes snapped open.
“I love you, Kathy! Don’t leave me!”
I looked out of the window to see a drenched face, his face red, especially around his squinting eyes.
I pulled open the fire exit, the bus not in motion, and Michael climbed in. I wrapped my arms around him and he closed the fire exit, we were locked in each other’s grip and kissed together.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

We were kissing like our lives depended on it. I loved her so much and Chelsea cleared out of my mind. I loved her. I loved her, so much.
She lay on top of me on the back seat of the bus, keeping our grip secure like she was my soul and couldn’t let get of her.
The bus driver looked around at us, a smile on his face. “Young love, these days.”
I giggled at what the bus driver said and Kathy pulled me closer towards her, breaking the kiss. “What about Chelsea?” she asked.
“I’ll tell her next time I see her. I want to be with you and only you.” We kissed again.
The bus doors clicked open and the tapping of wet shoes against the floor filled the silence. The bus doors clicked shut again and once the customer had paid for their ticket (asking to visit Dark Oak Farm), the shoes squeaked against the floor and then it ceased.
I had my eyes closed to know whom the person was, until they took one step forward and our kissing stopped. I looked forward to see someone with spiky, blonde hair. He had one ear sticking out further than the other and gleaming green eyes with huge dark circles under his eyes. He had an anorexic figure with arms like twigs and cheekbones really visible. The figure was wearing a white, greyish shirt with dark blue jeans that looked like they were slipping down because of his skinny figure.
Drake gawped at Kathy and me kissing, his face sunken in and his eyes as wide as golf balls. He looked shocked, bewildered and confounded all at once.
Then, to make the situation worse, Chelsea’s visible figure got onto the bus, smiling. She exchanged a ticket for money and muttered: “Two tickets for Gold House Concert, please.” She had a white bandage wrapped around her neck from the accident; it resembled a scarf despite the red blood splotches at the front where her oesophagus is. How on Earth did she survive being shot through the chest?
Another figure followed behind her, his spiky blonde hair with dark streaks appeared and he clung to Chelsea’s arms, pulling her around and smiling, they both leaned in and kissed. Anger swelled up inside of me.
“Chelsea, STOP!” I snapped, rather loudly, causing Kathy to hold her ear in pain. Chelsea turned sharply around and looked at me like dirt and at Kathy like she was an insect that must be crushed. The bus began to move.
“You, how dare you cheat on me with that freak?” Chelsea snapped vigorously at me.
“I love her. And you, how dare you cheat on me with that murderer!” I snapped back at her.
Kathy gasped, staring vigorously at Bradley. “You … you’re the one whom murdered my sister and stalked us both at my grandparent’s home!”
“I happen to be their grandson, Cousin Kathy.” Bradley snapped.
“You’re my cousin!” Kathy snapped with her eyes wide, “You were trying to kill your own cousins and killed one of them in the process!”
“They are my family, not yours. People wonder why I’m so violent, they brought me up when my parents died in a fire, which Amethyst as a baby caused. She needed to die.” Bradley grumbled.
“I belong with Bradley and you belong with Kathy, all is settled. I’m breaking up with you.” Chelsea muttered.
“Oh no you don’t, I’m breaking up with you!” I snapped.
Drake still gawped in the middle of the bus, looking at each of us every few seconds before looking back.
“Take a picture, it will last longer.” Kathy laughed, looking at Drake.
“What on Earth is going on here? I was going to visit you!” Drake pointed at the shocked teenage girl underneath me.
“But … why? Why would you kill my sister? My sister was the closest person in the world to me.” Kathy asked Bradley, ignoring my whimper and getting up and sitting upright. I lifted myself with the heavy weight of disappointment on my shoulders in unison to Kathy.
“I’ve already explained that, fool.” Bradley smiled and kissed Chelsea again, making sure Michael could see. Drake turned around to look then frowned back at Kathy who he has loved for some time.
“I hate you. You’re not family.” Kathy sulked.
“Oh, but I am. The only family you will have left.” Bradley exclaimed.
“W-what d-d-do you mean?” Kathy said, nearly sobbing.
“Your mother has walked out on you and will never come back, your dad doesn’t want you, your sister is dead, and your brother was poisoned by wine last year and your grandparents don’t want you and your aunt died from emphysema, your uncle, well he died from Cirrhosis. I’m your only family.” Bradley spoke through nearly every horrid experience in my life at once, ever so slowly and after every word my stomach felt as if it was closing in on itself and my heart felt as if it was slowing down gradually.
“Drake, sit down.” I asked and Drake sat down beside me, “What have the doctor’s said? I’ve been crying about you, all of us have, what has happened?” As I asked this reassuringly, everyone in the room stopped talking and looked over at Drake in shock and awe, awaiting an answer that they felt would change their lives.
“Er … the doctors said they might be able to do something for me, but they’re not sure, apparently they might change the chemical they are going to inject into me, they’ve been giving me a certain one for my whole life. I might live but there is a larger chance that I will die.” Drake muttered. He had a slight rubicund of visage while he was talking, which confounded me. I knew exactly what he was doing, which was why I couldn’t even maintain eye contact with the lying traitor.
“But, that means you have one month left to live.” Kathy sighed.
“Yeah,” Drake lowered his face into his hands to hide his chuckling and I had no idea why he was laughing – it is sick and twisted, if you ask me.
Kathy and me got up out of our seats and walked to the front of the bus when it stopped.
“I hope you’re happy with a murderer as a boyfriend!” I exclaimed at Chelsea who frowned at me.
“I thought you were going to die so I needed someone new. You were getting boring anyway and Bradley is my soul mate.” Chelsea said, kissing Bradley.
Kathy and I departed from the feint light dazzled bus with grimy windows and out into the breezy night air. The path was showered with puddles and the rain had caused my hair to sprout out copiously in all directions, I ran my hand through my damp hair and it spiked up crazily. As soon as my lungs experienced the horrible, chocking fumes that smashed against my face as I stepped outside, I began to cough and splutter.
Drake ran out of the bus entrance after us. “Guys, wait up!” He groaned and caught up with us; Kathy and I were holding hands as a symbol of our togetherness and care for each other.
“You’re a liar! You know you are!” I snapped back at Drake, he stopped in his tracks and suddenly went pale.
“Haven’t you realised how many times your story has changed? Now I understand why you shake and go red when you talk about it – you’re a pathetic lair! No wonder Tess dumped you! You deserve it you piece of filth!” The words just came out without me realising it, Kathy’s expression was identical to mine: a twisted face, frowning, and our eyes like thin slits. We stared at Drake in disgust.
“You didn’t have anything wrong with you when you were a baby! You freak!” Kathy snapped angrily.
“No, no.” Drake whispered, backing away slowly into the empty road where a huge bus once had commotion on board, Brad and Chelsea already on their way to the concert.
“Yeah, you’re a liar! Why would you mess with our feelings?” I shouted tentatively.
“It … it … it’s not a lie. I promise you, why would I do that?” Drake stuttered nervously, his eyes wide with terror and abashment. He looked cataclysmically scared; shaking continuously while Kathy became brightly enthusiastic.
“See! You just lied again!” My words came out powerful, although in my head they sounded pitiful.
I swung out of Kathy’s grip and pulled myself towards Drake, lifting my clenched fist above my right shoulder and forced my fist into Drake’s face. He fell back into the road, landing in a large puddle, weeping.
“I don’t deserve this!” Drake snapped as I kicked him between the legs, he fell back again, coughing and spluttering, his face landing in the murky puddle.
“Stay out of our lives!” I snapped, kicking the water in his face, his face covered in thick mud and misty water that had a trace of petrol swimming inside from the departing bus.
Kathy and I laughed at him as he cried, not bothering to get up. I pushed my arm around hers and with our backs turned on Drake; we walked down the street away from the traitor.
The whole way home, I felt a pulsing pain where I had been shot and I was losing large masses of blood. Dizziness overwhelmed me once more.


/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

I remember a hot room where everything, from the ceiling light on the West side of the room to the curtains obscuring the room on the East side of the room, had boiled and caught fire from the immense heat caused by the faulty thermostat. The whole experience flashed before me: Kathy returned home late, I feinted, the incident occurred at 4:11A.M and the lights went out.
I pulled the covers up to my face and realised the silk was thinner than my original bedcover, so where was I?
I wasn’t at home, I knew that much. Well, how could I be at home? It was set on fire, of course!
I squinted around the room; I was on a trolley bed in a hospital. A strong breeze pulsed through the open window behind me. I was sure; somehow, that I heard the voices of Kathy and Michael during unconsciousness, but that’s impossible, isn’t it?
I was escorted out of the hospital ward; apparently I was in no near death experience as I was well enough to leave the hospital’s care. My heart sank when I was told, I’d prefer to be cared for at the hospital than go home to nothing.
“I am delighted to say that you are in no harm, your body temperature has become regular and your blood pressure has become at a normal rate as well as your heart rate, “ said a male doctor, a clipboard clasped in his hands and peering over at me above his oval spectacles. He had spiky black hair that shone a grey colour in the sparkling light above us.
“But, I have nothing to go home to. Didn’t you read the paper? My apartment caught fire! I need a place to stay … can’t I stay here? I need to stay here!” I snapped.
“I’m sorry, ma’am, the only place available is the children’s ward. You will be able to stay here for a month. If …” The doctor whispered, opening the door next to him near reception, clasping my hand and dragging me through.
The room had white walls; it was very small and had nothing inside and not even a window to occupy sunlight.
“Yes? I’ll do anything. I just want to stay here: to have a home.” I said defiantly.
“This is my first day as a doctor, I’m not qualified or anything. I was told that I’d find a teenager here to do a favour for me. I was told you knew Kathy Kimberley?”
“Yes … why?” I asked apprehensively, I was shaking from worry.
“Amethyst, her sister, left behind a family heirloom to Kathy. The contents of the will have not been classified yet, although it is certain that Kathy will receive a small case, the sort of case that would contain a ring, but inside is something I cannot say.” The doctor said in a shrill whisper.
“Well?” I asked cautiously yet slowly.
“I need you to steal it from her and bring it to North shop. Is that possible? If not, I’m afraid you are homeless.” The doctor smirked, holding out his hand.
“Deal …” I knew I’d regret this: I put my hand out and shook his as to seal the deal. What could be inside that small case?

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

I chewed the end of my pencil, my head tilted to the left, so I could think through my work. I tapped on the table, getting irritated that I couldn’t think of another sentence to add.
An hour ago, I had thought up the idea of expressing my feelings to Kathy through a poem. An hour later, I had nothing.
I continued to tap irritatingly on the table as nothing popped into my blank mind. Maybe I just can’t write about feelings, love and passion. Maybe I’m just a victim of the streets and nothing else.
I was at home in my bedroom that used to be clean last week but now it resembles a rubbish tip: everything that was once on shelves now lay sprawled across the floor as well as varieties of different wrappers, obviously I took no care of my room. I didn’t bother with my room. I only cared about girls.
Then words that formed a poem popped into my head, as I lay sprawled across my mattress that had no quilt covers or cushions.

‘My heart is like a tear, it is always shed,
My feelings are the sun: always shining and never darkening,
Until my heart bled,
My feelings are crying: an
Angry anchor,
That keeps sinking.
My heart is like paper; it is so easy to tear.
My heart is like a house; it needs so many bricklayers to stand upright,
With a roof to support it and keep it steady.
My heart has a pernicious pulse when I see you.
My heart is like an ox; it is huge yet strong and fast.
My heart is like ice; it is so easy to break.
You’re caustic, spirited and scornful yet I love you.
Love goes by on the back of depression, deception and delusion.

K is for keeping me near to you forever,
A is for appreciation which you can always give me,
T is for the way you look at me,
H is for my heart that is crying for you,
Y is for you, the person I will treasure in my heart forever.

That is why I need you; this is why you are my life and soul.
I love you; I love you so much.
Life will go by on crutches if I do not see your face.
You are my life and soul …
You always will be … forever …’

I scribbled the poem down on a scrap piece of paper, smiling at my achievements and hoping that my hard work would benefit to Kathy. My heart pounded against my chest as I pocketed the rough poem. I rocketed down the stairs, pushing my trainers on and shooting out the front door. Although, the pain increased as I ran.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I awoke from a constant knocking on the door. It was 9:00 a.m. and I was still tired. I squinted around the room, the light form the window flooding me.
I tied my dressing gown around my waist and slowly walked down the stairs, opening the front door. There was no one there: I checked from left to right and stepped outside to have a clearer look, although, no one appeared.
I looked down at my welcome mat where a package lay addressed to me. I brought it inside and opened it up with my penknife.
Inside the cardboard package were mainly pieces of bubble wrap and a small case, one that would hold a ring, and tucked away at the bottom was a letter. I slit open the envelope carefully and pulled out a folded piece of paper, which I read through and after every word, my heart skipped a beat.

‘Dear Miss Kathy Kimberley,
As you may already know that your sister, Amethyst Sarah Kimberley, died recently in a car crash involving an explosion at a local petrol station.
The funeral will take place shortly and further details are to be confirmed, however, what we are able to confirm is the contents of the Will she has left behind to you:
“To my beloved sister, Kathy Rachel Kimberley, I leave behind one of my treasured possessions: a small ring case which contains something dear to me, if you can open it, it is yours,” are the exact words addressed to you in her Will.
The object is unknown to our company, as the box will not open. I hope you are well and will be able to attend Amethyst Kimberley’s funeral shortly in the next month.
Yours truly,
Albert Pass’

My breathing was shallow with excitement as I neared the end of the letter, a chilly feeling overwhelming me.
I sprinted upstairs and crawled back into bed, hugging the letter and keeping it close to me. It may not be from Amethyst but it is about her, which is why I must keep this letter and this small case dear to me.
I pressured the case with my fingers and tried to prise it open but it would not budge. I hit it with my fist, despite causing my knuckles to fade a pale colour and go bright red; it would not open at all. I threw it to one side; it was causing irritation and frustration to rise up inside and anger was beginning to overwhelm me.
The second my back hit the mattress, I fell into a deep and lonely sleep, but when I awoke two hours later … I regretted going back to sleep at all …

I was driving, my hands firm on the wheel as I turned corners. I had just stopped outside the hospital for some reason, which was blank in my memory.
I sped up, my heart thundering against my chest, trying to break free. I started to break lots of perspiration and my fear of knowing what would occur increased.
I started to drive at ninety miles per hour and sped past all other vehicles driving at a slow thirty miles per hour.
I looked out of my window casually and my heart stopped as I saw a familiar teenage boy with blonde spiked up hair, his hands clasped tightly around a shotgun.
I heard a loud bang and a trickle of acrid, black smoke erupted from its surface and a bullet soared in my direction, piercing one of my left tyres and causing me to suddenly skid across the road: out of control.
I hit the side of a car and caused them to spin rapidly out of course and onto the path, just missing a couple walking their golden retriever.
I came near to the petrol station and another bullet split another of my tyres and caused the car to lose balance and skid across the road and into the petrol tank, flying fluorescent flames flitting in all directions, famished flames ready to eat everything in sight.
The cat in the back seat shot to the front window and smacked against the windscreen.
My head smacked forward and hit the wheel, causing my whole world to go blank. My vision failed; the joints in my body failed on me. My arms and legs became just a memory as they flopped out of control; my head pulsed with pain; I was … dying. I felt nothing more, I had no emotions or pain and I had no memory. I was … de-

I awoke screaming, my blood curdling scream taking over the silence. My heart pounded against my ribs and my mouth was like sandpaper, I needed water.
I was Amethyst in my sleep, it was as if I was the one who crashed into a petrol tank and died. It was an atrocious experience and there was one significant problem: it felt so real.
I groped around on the floor blindly, hunting for the minute case. Eventually, I swiped it up and attempted to prise it open again but my hands were too sweaty from the shock that my fingers just slipped away.
I took my penknife out of my pocket and poked at the opening but it would still not open.
I saw the whole experience again, mentally in my head, flashing before in disturbing pictures. It all ended with an explosion, the petrol tank erupting into flames and then the atmosphere went cold and what occurred at the end was death.
I stopped reputably while attempting to open the minute case as the case became as cold as ice, piercing my fingertips, its frozen outline causing me to throw it to one side as my hands became numb.
I outstretched my hands then closed them again, repeating this and staring at the rectangular mark it had scratched on my palm. Whatever was inside of this case wasn’t something that wanted to be opened, unless Amethyst had super glued the opening and put ice inside the case, which would be pointless.
I turned the case over in my hands and spotted something I hadn’t acknowledged before: a small tip of rolled up paper stuck out of the bottom of the case. I pulled it out and unrolled it, reading the inscription:
Where love is, death follows. Where death is, the contents are revealed.
I looked bewildered down at the inscription, puzzled thoughts rushing through my head simultaneously.
Then a thought clicked into my head. There is only one way to find out what was left behind for me and I know exactly what to do.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

Tess crawled into my mind that morning, the time we spent together flashing before me. She was the one person that was special to me, that meant something to me.
I thought occurred in my head and I reached for my mobile phone, digging in my pocket and dialling Tiffany Calling’s number. After a short period of time, she answered and her sweet voice rang in my ears.
“Hi Tiff, how are you?” I asked down the phone.
“I’m … good. Why do you ask?”
“I need you to do a favour for me … you know Tess Calamber?”

“Well how would you like to pretend to start a relationship with me to trick Tess and make her jealous and … I don’t know, make up stuff like we have gone to the next stage in our relationship so that she-“
I decided to leave out the part about I wanted Tess back and just left the conversation there, awaiting a positive reply. I bit my nails from nervousness.
“Yeah, alright, so when do we begin?”
“I’m going to invite her to come out with us and then we’ll begin and make her jealous.” I muttered, smirking.
“So, we are going to outwit her?”
“You could say that, yeah. I just want to see her heart crumble into a thousand pieces when she realises I’ve moved on. Oh and by the way, did I mention that I’m going to die in two months?” My heart hammered against my chest after I spoke.
“Cool. See you later!” Tiffany hung up on me and I stared at the phone dismissively, throwing it onto my bedside table, lying on my bed and staring up at my ceiling.
I liked Tiffany for assisting me with my problem but I despised her when she said ‘cool’ after I said something serious. What if I had been serious? I’m not going to die, of course.

Later that day, we invited Tess out with us and she walked ahead of us, alone. Although, she did keep looking back and sighing once in a while when Tiffany and I linked arms and kissed each other.
We ran towards Tess, she looked distant and her eyes looked bloodshot and her face distraught. Her complexion looked as if she had not slept in days and she had lost weight, not a lot though.
“I think I just saw a frog, help me!” Tiffany hugged me tightly and pressed her face against mine, looking terrified. Tiffany had a phobia of frogs and whenever she spotted one she would come closer to me.
“Pathetic.” Tess whispered under her breath.
“Excuse me?” I asked Tess as I kissed Tiffany.
“Oh? It is nothing, just nothing. I was just saying that your girlfriend is pathetic. You deserve better. Much better, someone like me.” Tess mumbled, rather sarcastically near the end.
“You had your chance with me and you failed. So, forget it. I’m a lot happier with lovely Tiffany.” I lied.
“I love him too, he’s dreamy.” Tiffany lied.
“Well I think you both are disgusting, pathetic and atrocious! You don’t deserve to live and Drake, I’ll be glad when you die in two months because then I’ll never have to see you, you’re a liar!” She snapped, near to tears. I frowned angrily.
“You are a pernicious person who has no life and just sits around all-day eating until your heart’s content!” I snapped vigorously.
“You are a skinny runt who will snap even if a leaf was thrown at him!” Tess glared at me viciously.
“You live in a hospital!”
“You live in … a house” Tess seemed puzzled. Tiffany laughed hysterically in the background, looking at each of us.
“You are selfish and don’t make any sense! You threaten to commit suicide so you can get your own way! You are pathetic! I wish you were dead!” I shouted at the top of my voice, Tess looked frightened and Tiffany smirked at me.
“Wishes always come true.” Tess whispered and walked away, even more distraught than she was before, I felt horrendous inside but strangely triumphant.
I collapsed inside when I heard the last sentence I uttered. I felt as if I’d gone too far to impress her and actually insulted her suicidal mind. I was dying inside.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

It was too soon! The next day, after discovering what I had been given in my sister’s will, my sister’s funeral had arrived.
The graveyard stretched on for miles, on top of a grassy hill, overlooking our hometown. Amethyst had a gravestone in the shape of a diamond with engraved amethyst diamonds around the edge, from her name representing a particular favourite type of diamond my mother and I cherished when I was young.
During our first years in this world, we were not abused, although it did take action during the time our father left us behind and our stepfather took his place in the family, beginning the abuse and forcing our mother to join, despite her own opinion of it being negative. I refer to my stepfather as father now, although I despise him as much as the other members of my family.
Everyone gathered around the deep gaping hole in the ground where a black coffin sat next to it, containing two things: the motionless, calm body of my beloved sister, Amethyst, and a photograph of Amethyst and I smiling gleefully. It was a recent picture taken just before she ran away and I followed her footsteps by escaping the hell that was my parents.
The crowd were all family members I had not been acknowledged about, none of them I knew, all except my friends gathering at the back with their head’s bowed: Tess, frowning and weeping; Drake, his hands clasped around his mobile phone; Michael, his hands tightened around a set of roses, his hands clasped so tightly on the stems that the xylem inside would be screaming for mercy: all my friends were wearing a black suit, burying a white tie underneath.
The vicar had already muttered the words from the bible and everyone was becoming tense and distraught as the coffin was lowered into the earth, sets of flowers burying the coffin, topping them with the replaced soil.
Sobbing filled the silence, the crowd were wiping tears with their handkerchiefs and felling hollow. The sky darkened as well as the gathered people’s mood.
I took out the minute case from my zipped pocket as everyone except my friends departed. They didn’t bother to look at the small case in my hands, they only murmured to each other behind me, gathered in a small group. Tess and Drake attempted to keep a far distance away from each other for obvious reasons.
Tears trickled down my face and fell onto the case, my life feeling hollow and empty. My eyes snapped shut, my bloodshot eyes hidden.
Seconds later, the case opened slightly so it looked as if it was squinting. I squinted and looked down at the case, my eyes widening as I realised that it was opening.
I looked in the tiny gap and saw only darkness, I attempted to prise it open once more but it would not budge. The enzymes in my tears must have acted on the superglue around the opening of the case, causing it to open slightly.
The reason it would not open anymore than it already is, was a blank in my mind and I was confounded at the thought of something so simple to open not even squinting by the small surface area of a knife and the strength of human muscles. It only opened by tears. I pocketed it once more and stared up at the indigo blue sky, feeling as empty as the case in my pocket … in my opinion.
The funeral had filtrated into everyone departing from the church and going home, as did my friends. I, on my own, wandered the streets with no home, no family and no confidence.
I sobbed into my hands, depression taking its rightful place in the pit of my stomach, making me drowsy and suicidal.
At one in the morning, I stumbled to Michael’s doorstep. He smiled from ear to ear when he spotted me. He led me in, not saying a word. He ran into the kitchen and I walked slowly up the stairs.
“You can stay the night here, if you like. My parents aren’t here and you can sleep in the guestroom. Oh, and I have a surprise for you!” Michael shouted up to me as I collapsed onto the bed in the guestroom, not taking notice of the regular surroundings: simply a purple lamp, purple wallpaper, a wardrobe, a chest of drawers and a double bed.
Michael walked up the stairs, carrying a cup of tea and pushed the guest room door open, running in. I took careless sips from the mug and stared around like nothing in this room meant anything: nothing in this world meant anything to me at this particular period of time.
I sat up, slumped on the bed. I felt nothing more than depression and darkness.
“Here’s my surprise.” Michael dug into his pocket, bringing out a folded, scrunched up piece of paper. He handed it over to me and it had words in blue ink written on it.
I read through it quickly, my expression not changing. Michael looked anxious as I read. I placed my fingertips, my index finger and thumb, on the top of the page and tore through it. I threw the two halves in his face and kicked off my shoes, lying on the bed.
“Get out!” I snapped at Michael, his shocked expression frozen and his mouth gawping at me indignantly. He stood up incontinently and ran out of the room, the remains of the poem on the floor. I heard him mutter ‘My Dad was right’ in a feint whisper. I’m not sure what that meant.
I hid my face in the white cushion and sobbed throughout the night, my mood never altering.

Michael’s incompetent snoring echoed across the corridors as I crept to the bathroom. I stared into the mirror, frowning at my unhealthy face: the dark circles around my eyes, the bloodshot eyes piercing through me. My cheekbones were poking out.
I grabbed my toothbrush (my grandparents had delivered my belongings) and snapped the plastic in half quite easily. The snapped plastic was sharp and dangerous, which is exactly what I wanted.
I stroked the sharp end against my wrist and blood gushed out, the pain unwelcoming but the clearness of life would be like heaven and hopefully that is where I would be after this.
I took my metal-strapped watch out of my pocket and placed it around my wrist, covering the wound and the metal against the blood excruciatingly painful.
I took the minute case out of my pocket once more and held it before me; the small opening still did not budge as I pressured it with my fingers. I held it up to the light, hoping the light would devour the darkness inside but it still remained dark and whatever was inside still unknown to me.
I cried into my hands again, hoping that it would open some more. However, something cold did trickle down my arm and dripped onto the opening but it was not a tear.
A droplet of my blood hit the opening and the case snapped open. I was bewildered yet stupefied. Of course! This is what she wanted me to have! I stared at the item locked beneath the plastic cushiony prison that would normally hold a ring. My whole life stopped when I stared at the item. Nothing would ever be the same again …

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

I couldn’t sleep. I felt as if something wasn’t right and that the problem was inside of my house. I looked left and switched on my lamp, crawling out of bed and walking over to the door, listening through the wood, an ear pressed against it.
Kathy, well I hope it is her, was in the bathroom, crying. I pushed the door opened and tiptoed down the corridor. I saw the back of Kathy’s head and as she turned around, she looked mortified and ruined.
She continued to sob, frowning deeply at me. She held out and outstretched hand containing a small red case. It was open.
I stared down into its contents and my heartbeat felt as if it had came to a halt.
“Nothing will ever be the same again.” I muttered, near to a whisper.
“Yeah, I was thinking that too.” Kathy sniffed then wiped her eyes with a handkerchief. I had known Amethyst for years and now I see her in a different light. My life changed that day and as I said: ‘Nothing will ever be the same again …’ I believed that my life would be just another star in the sky that longed to be drawn into a black hole because …
‘Nothing will ever be the same again …’


/ . /
- Drake Carter –

I shivered. I stared at the choice before me that I knew would alter my life or even shade it away.
“I may hate you but I promised to help you with this. Before we begin can I ask you a question? Are you mental? You need to eat or you’ll become famished, then ravenous, then DEAD! Don’t you understand?” Tess asked in her calm, sweet voice. I believed she was quite competent, one strange reason why I trusted her.
She pointed at a crumb as I trembled. It was a breadcrumb and that was only the start of the test.
I started to feel cold and felt as if I’d die any minute now. Next to me is a crumb, Tess says that it’s either eating a crumb or sparing my life. I don’t know what to do, if I eat the crumb, I’ll gain weight. If I don’t, I’ll die. I think I won’t eat it.
“Think of the crumb as round one. You need to eat this to get to round two. If you don’t, you die of starvation.” Tess said, staring into my eyes. I quivered continuously.
My shaking hand picked up the crumb and as it quivered near my mouth, I couldn’t eat it. Breadcrumbs have fat in them and if I ate it my complexion would be like an elephant’s. I’d be heavy and fat!
“Please … Please, you’ve got to eat it. I don’t want to see you die.” Tess said calmly.
“I can’t! I just can’t!” I exclaimed while tears streamed down my face. The crumb lay on my index finger and I didn’t know what to do with it, I couldn’t eat it without becoming fat but a stabbing pain in my stomach insisted I eat it. My stomach begged for food and my life wanted me to care for it. I need to eat but I can’t and I won’t.
I gave in to the stabbing pain and popped the crumb into my mouth. I felt a kind of relief but still shook violently.
Tess clapped to congratulate me. “Well done! Thank you! Round two: a chip. You’ll have to eat a fatty and greasy chip!” My stomach lurched at the sound of ‘fatty’.
“Please, do not say that. Just give it to me and I’ll … eat it.” I frowned and sobbed into my hands, imagining what I would look like if I were fat – again.
Tess brought a rolled up piece of aluminium foil from the side of the table and lay it down in front of her. It was like a police interview, I sat on one side of the small, rectangular table at my home and she sat on the other side, watching me carefully.
My parents were upstairs and Tess was in front of me, unrolling the aluminium foil and taking out a chip, it looked as if it had more food hidden inside, which caused my heart to leap into my throat with fear.
I watched cautiously as Tess pulled out a chip dripping with fat from the aluminium foil. She held her hand out, the chip between her fingers.
I took it from her and held it up in front of my face. I looked at it as if it was dirt, what would happen if I actually ate it? I’d be fat, of course.
I was disgusted at the fact of eating. I would starve until I was thin and healthy and when that day came, I would eat again.
I popped the chip into my mouth and began to chew. It tasted a lot different than the first time I ate one last month.
I swallowed it carelessly and placed my hands on my stomach, awaiting it to fatten up, but it didn’t after some hesitation.
“See, that wasn’t so bad, was it?” Tess asked, she reached her hands over and mine joined hers.
“I’m going to be fat, I know I am!” I snapped.
“No you’re not!” Tess snapped back at me.
She took out a small sponge cake from the unwrapped aluminium foil and handed it over to me. I stared dismissively at it then gave in; I popped the whole cake into my mouth and chewed vigorously, hoping that the sweet taste wouldn’t last too long.
I felt strange, as if my whole body would swell up any second and I’d gain weight. But I didn’t.
“Now, there is only one more thing for you to eat. Just don’t panic, please.” Tess pulled out a purple tablet from the aluminium foil and handed it over to me, as well as a glass of water.
I studied it in my hands, looking bewildered. “What is it?” I asked, not taking my eye off the purple tablet.
“It … it is a weight gaining tablet.” She muttered and I threw the tablet onto the table.
“What, you must be kidding me!” I snapped.
“Please, eat it and all your problems will just fade away.” Tess gestured with her hands flying to their sides.
I picked it up and quickly threw it into my mouth, swallowing it down with water.
I felt a pulsing pain in my stomach as I swallowed it down. I felt dizzy and my senses started to fail on me.
“The effects will start to take action in the next twenty four hours. Do you feel okay?” Tess asked.
My hands began to tremble. “I can’t gain weight … I don’t want to. Please take it back! Please, take the tablet back!”
“I can’t, you’ve swallowed it now. It is in your digestive system, you can’t take it back.” Tess muttered.
“I don’t want to gain weight! I want to be healthy!” I was near sobbing and fear overwhelmed me.
“That is what that tablet will do. It will make you healthy, you will gain weight and your cheekbones won’t be so visible and … you won’t have dark circles around your eyes. You will be healthy!” Tess snapped. I thought she was congenial but by the way she snapped at me I was having a different view of her.
“OK, I’m alright. I’m not fat and I haven’t gained any weight!” I examined my arms and they still seemed like thin branches.
“If you don’t start eating then you won’t die in two months, you’ll die in one month! Or even less!” Tess snapped, taking her hands away from mine, “You are telling the truth about that, aren’t you?”
My whole body became tense and my mouth went dry, I couldn’t speak. I opened my mouth and only a sigh came out. Tess looked at me uncertainly and just before her face became full of overpowering anger, I replied near to a gasp.
“Of course it is the truth. I wouldn’t lie about something as horrible as that. That would be m-m-mean.” I uttered a sigh.
“Good, because it has been going around college – how would I know because I was expelled, but anyway – that you have been lying about the whole thing?” Tess put her left hand on her chin and leant against it on the table.
“Of course, I’m not lying! OK?” I snapped vigorously, causing Tess to jump slightly.
“OK, it was only a general wondering. So, you promise you will start eating now?” She asked.
“I promise.” Underneath the table, though, I had my fingers crossed. Tess got out of her seat and walked over to the cupboard.
“So, do y’ want a drink? There is … blackcurrant juice?” Tess asked.
“Too many calories,” I shook my head, “anything else?”
“Would y’ like a glass of water, then?” She took a glass out of the cupboard.
“Is it purified? If it isn’t it will have too many calories so no, I think I’m full enough.” I crossed my arms. My blazon and appearance seemed quite livid.
“Drake, what did we just go over?” Tess asked sulkily.
“You haven’t helped me, you’ve made me fat!” I snapped through clenched teeth.
“That was the whole point of this test – to make you gain weight!” Tess snapped.
“Get out!” I shouted.
“What did you say?” Tess glared angrily at me, her teeth bared.
“GET OUT OF MY HOUSE!” I snapped, “I hate you, get out!”
“Fine … I hate this place anyway; you can die for all I care! YOU CAN DIE!” Tess wiped the tears caused by anger from her face and stormed towards the front door.
“And I hope you do too!” I snapped back at her and she turned around, glared into my angry eyes for a second and ten turned her distraught self towards the front door, slamming it behind her and running away in the snowy environment: flakes of snow rocketing to the ground like pieces of clay all fitting together when they reached the ground to make one whole piece.
That night, I had no dinner and the next morning, I had no breakfast. Tess’ help was useless.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

I ran, screaming at the top of my voice, trudging through the thick snow. I was angry, distraught, upset with myself and suicidal.
I sprinted towards a tree and lay against it, the branches above layered in flakes of snow.
The tree bark prickled against my skin and I knew exactly what to do. I lifted up my chubby wrist and scraped it against the spiky tree trunk. It caused flakes of skin to peel off but it didn’t help with my suicide.
I smacked my wrist against the tree trunk with impressive force, my head rested against the trunk, weeping into the frozen flakes that lay there. The branch cut my skin and trickles of blood fell onto the snow beneath my feet, sinking beneath it and melting a small hole in its depths.
I screeched with agony and pounded against the branches dangling overhead. I didn’t understand why everything in my life was so dramatically changing. I had a lack of motivation and nothing in my life was going to plan, depression was leading my life.
I sank down to the ground, weeping into my blood soaked hands and whispering to myself.
“You don’t deserve to live … you hate your family … you have no friends … your life is a mess!”
I pulled out a tablet from my spacious pockets and swallowed it whole without water.
I threw the empty bottle that once contained fifteen tablets, which I’d devoured today, into the snow that swallowed it whole.
I trudged through the snow, my icy blood dripping into the same temperature ice below.
I need someone to help me; anyone could help me or I’ll commit suicide. I don’t know what to do, I don’t know what to think, what to believe. I am fat, everyone hates me and I have no life or meaning in it.
I felt alone.
I felt distraught.
I am/was depressed.
My self-image was obviously negative!
I ran back to Drake’s front door and hammered on the wood with my uninjured wrist and then with the injured one, hoping that more blood would flow out of me and I’d die like I’ve always wanted to do.
No one answered. No one came. I sat at the foot of the door, waiting for Drake to come and save me: I was losing too much blood and my consciousness was fading away before me.
I meant nothing to anybody, especially Drake. No one would ever care about me or care if I die. No one cares if I’m suicidal. No one cares that I slit my wrists every ten minutes.
I felt sick and dizzy and leant my left arm against the wooden front door, coughing and spluttering.
Drake’s red face of anger appeared at the door; I stood up instantly and stared into his hazel eyes, locked in forbidding love.
I jumped up onto the step and wrapped my arms around him, crying into his brown coat, my face pressed against his chest.
He looked down at me stupefied and walked inside and closed the door; he was full of bewilderment which had altered his red, angry face into a pale complexion, near smiling.
I kissed him but he pulled away and pushed me to one side, making me hit the door lightly.
“No … it’s not right.” Drake muttered.
“Don’t you love me? I love you!” I asked through sobbing.
After some hesitation, he replied.
“No. I hate you. I’ve never loved you.”




Are you distraught from daily bullying? Having problems at home? Suffering from relationship/friendship problems? Or perhaps, you are suicidal? Are you unhappy with a particular part of your past? Did your family abandon you? Or are you simply: afraid? Don’t worry about it! Because …
If you are suffering from any of the above then … THE DEPRESSION CLUB is the place for you! Talk about your problems and fight with them until they no longer bother you, your problems will be solved and will be kept completely confidential …

Mondays – 3:30 until 5:50
Tuesdays – 3:30 until 7:30
Wednesday – closed
Thursday – 3:20 until 7:30
Friday – 3:20 until 7:50
Saturday – closed
Sunday – closed

Also on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday mornings before College begins.

I hope to see you there!

For more information contact Celia Saliss

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

The next day, at college, it was half an hour before the educational, boring day began. I just slumped around the college corridors, the walls were a pale blue and had numerous pieces of art fixed to the wall, hidden inside glass frames.
As I passed the Mental Arithmetic corridor, something caught my eye. Written in bold, standard writing were the words: DEPRESSION CLUB. The words rang through my head: DEPRESSION CLUB, DEPRESSION CLUB. The words seemed so familiar and eye-catching that I pushed through the door the sign was fixed upon and walked in, not knowing what to expect.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

I sprinted across the hall, searching for a place to hide. The gang of South Corner were right behind me, although, I’d led them downstairs and then escaped through the door to the Mental Arithmetic corridor while they stormed through the door to the English Corridor.
I was panting and spluttering, leaning against the pale blue wall. I heard the sound of running footsteps and voices cursing and shouting: ‘weakling’ at the top of their voices.
I searched the corridor for help but all I spotted was a plastic sign fixed to a wooden door. On that sign, the words that caught my attention instantly were words that occurred to me every day of my life. ‘Afraid’ and ‘bullying’ seemed to be in bold writing to me; they were what I suffered from.
I stormed through the door, not taking my eyes off the sign until I went through.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

The bullies chased me, calling me names involving my weight. I came upon an open door and ran through, not knowing what it was.
I was visiting the college for an art exhibition in the main hall, I wasn’t taught here obviously as I was expelled from high school which caused me to miss out on year nine options to go to college. I have also visited here for a maths degree, which got me a level E, in which corridor I am now standing in.
The bullies from high school had moved up to college, which is when they saw me; they recognised me instantly and continued their woeful annoying antics.
The bullies ran passed the door and I looked out of the door window, chuckling. I turned around to see many familiar faces sitting on metal chairs at tables.
I gasped and nearly stormed out of the room when I saw the sign above the whiteboard.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I walked into the college, holding the small red case that now opened and closed freely.
As I ran up the stairs, I spotted a sign pointing down the Mental Arithmetic corridor. It simply read: ‘Depressed? Go this way!’
I walked casually down the Mental Arithmetic corridor, the bell had already erupted in a hiss which signified that the college is opened freely for an hour, before lessons began, for students to organise their day and write assignments.
I stumbled through the door marked: DEPRESSION CLUB and found my friends sitting at tables, chatting.
Tess sat at the back of the room, her chin rested on her outstretched hands. She looked uninterestingly out of the large window at the end of the table, enabling a view of the grassland college grounds. Drake was scribbling words so negligible onto his notepad that I could hardly notice what they were; he didn’t look up at me as I sat down on a chair a metre away from him. On the table next to him was Michael, starting a conversation with Drake who looked up from his writing and began to reply. I ignored their meaningless conversation as I stared ahead: two other students, their identity unknown to me, were chatting away in front of me.
The room was mainly a pale beige colour, the walls were dotted with numerous assignments produced by students and above the whiteboard was a fixed sign saying: ‘WELCOME TO THE DEPRESSION CLUB’.
The tables were arranged in small singular, rectangular tables dotted round the room in rows; the tables were one metre apart from each other.
I stared at the door as it creaked open. The noise ceased and silence took its place.
“Pathetic children here in my presence, welcome sadly to ‘the depression club.’” The woman strutted towards the front of the room, her thin, tormenting smile frightening me, sending a chin up my spine. She looked like a nefarious woman; her face looked like an eagle’s, her pointed, spiky nose sticking out like a bird’s beak and becoming oddly hooked at the end. Her cheeks were rosy and her eyes pierced through me as she looked into mine. In the pale light of the bulb above us, her eyes appeared red, causing my arms to quiver slightly and the hairs on them to point at my face. Her hazel hair was tied back in a bun, two thin metal knives pierced through her hair (I’m not joking! Two thin knives, without a handle, pierced through her hair! They looked like metallic pencils but with a sharper and more threatening point) and she seemed to be in her thirties, although I could be wrong. The witchlike woman wore a green jacket and black trousers, her shoes black as well and her wrists layered with bracelets, her fingers showered with slightly overwhelming multicoloured rings.
“Now, my dear children, I will point to you one by one and you will reveal everything that has been troubling you, related to depression, of course.” The woman giggled threateningly and viciously. What the witchlike woman did next caused everyone in the room to shuffle to the back of their seats: shocked with their mouths in the shape of a dramatic, comical ‘O’. The woman pulled out one of the pencil like knives from her hair bonnet and pointed it at everyone in the classroom.
Firstly, she came upon a small boy; his face not visible as I was on the seat behind him, all I knew was that he had perspiration running down his neck and his hair was a bright blonde colour.
“My name is Miss Saliss. What dare I say is yours?” She spoke sweetly yet sharply, pointing the point of the metal knife at the shaking small boy.
“M-m-my name is Joe Red.” Joe Red stuttered.
“Good. Now tell me what is bothering you!” Miss Saliss snapped.
Joe Red, startled, answered her vicious question. “I-I am not being treated as an equal.”
“Oh, that’s terrible, really? That’s the worst problem I’ve ever heard!” Miss Saliss snapped sarcastically. “Get out of my room now, you ruined boy. That is not a problem; it is an excuse and a moan!”
Joe picked up his bag and ran, crying, out of the room, slamming the door behind him, his friend that was next to him followed behind him. When the door had closed, Miss Saliss slammed the ruler in her hand against the table at which Joe was sitting at where it sprung for a couple of seconds. Everyone in the room stared mortified at the table for a few seconds before returning their gaze at Miss Saliss. She wasn’t going to hurt him; she just wanted to create some fear, despite Joe was already halfway down the corridor by now.
“Are you all scared of me yet?” Miss Saliss muttered, throwing her angry gaze at me. I stared wide-eyed back at her, my eyes like that of an owl’s. She cracked her knuckles and stared into my frightened eyes. She conjured a ‘knife’ from her hair and pointed it at me which I knew could only mean one thing:
“Well, I am suicidal. Amethyst, my sister, died in a car crash. I use glass, knives and snapped toothbrushes to try to commit suicide. Er … I hang myself on a pole with a noose daily, I murdered someone with a golf club and that’s about it.” I muttered, near to tears. Everyone’s gaze in the room fixed on me, except Tess’, and the evil Miss Saliss stared disbelievingly at me. Michael gasped at me, Drake’s eyes were wide: I obviously hadn’t told them a few of my problems.
“Shocking … if you’re suicidal, don’t lie away in the darkness of your troubles, find a light of help and consult your parents –“
“They abuse me, so I wouldn’t talk to them.” I whispered, loud enough for Miss Saliss to hear.
“Don’t interrupt me, child! You should think of all the happy moments in your life and compare them to the bad times. You will find a reason for living, soon enough: in your heart.”
“Yeah right, as if that’s going to happen!” I snapped with my arms crossed with anger.
“Do you have a relationship going on?” Miss Saliss asked.
Michael was staring down at his desk but the second he heard what Miss Saliss had said, he jolted upright and stared ahead, looking at me reassuringly. As he jolted upright he knocked his cup of water off the table, causing everyone to stare at him as it smashed.
“Er … you could say that, yes. The person wrote me a poem and I tore it in half and threw the remains on the floor, although it was given to me on the day of my sister’s funeral.” I looked over at Michael and it looked as if his heart had sunk, he didn’t return my gaze.
“A poem, that’s sweet, I guess.” Miss Saliss placed the ‘knife’ on the table so that the point stuck in the top of it. “Just don’t touch the pointy stick, please. I don’t want any injuries.” Everyone was surprised by what she said. “It is just a way of showing that your problem doesn’t mean anything. I’ve ran out of those, now.”
She scanned her finger around the room, pointing at all the students in the room until she stopped in front of Michael, strolling towards him. “You … you’re Michael. What are your problems?”
“H-how do you know my name?” Michael stuttered.
“Yeah, it’s simple.” She said sycophantically.
“Wait ‘til you ‘ere my problems!” Michael said, leaning back against his chair coolly, he looked over at me, probably hoping to impress me (which he didn’t!). “Well, I am being bullied. A gang called South Corner, which injure me, mainly stabbing me, chased me. My girlfriend …” Michael took a risky glance over at me, then stared back at the horrible woman in front of him, who appeared to have wrinkles from that distance, “… is treating me terrible – she doesn’t care. Oh, and I’ve been having suicidal thoughts about it too, I keep thinking that she is gonna dump me.” Michael said, using ‘gonna’ to replace ‘going to’ as a slang way of speaking.
“Very … interesting,” Miss Saliss moved on and pointed at the back with her index finger at the sleepy Tess, “You, girl. Pay attention and tell me your problems!” Miss Saliss said slyly.
Tess’ lolling over eyes snapped open and she stared instantly at Miss Saliss, and then looked dumbly around the room. “I’m Tess and I’m suicidal, I’m bullied, take drugs, I’m afraid of life and I was abandoned by my parents.” Heavy with dread, Tess ascended towards the door. However, as she walked passed, Miss Saliss caught sight of something terrible. She smirked, “Tess, my dear. Bring your wrist here to me.”
Tess stopped in her tracks and suddenly went cold; her face pale was the evidence of that. She took careful steps towards the creature at the front of the classroom.
Miss Saliss snatched Tess’ wrist and examined the many scars. She then lifted up the sleeve of her red sweater, finding yet more gaping scars, one still bleeding slightly.
“Silly girl … why would you self harm?” Miss Saliss said after some hesitation.
“Er … depression?” Tess asked.
“Of course, depression makes you want to end your life but you have to fight it inside not on the outside with scars. You need to understand, you have one life and not a second chance.” Miss Saliss said sweetly and stared into Tess’ blue pearl eyes, “Live life to the full and don’t let depression get you down.”
Tess looked at Miss Saliss in bewilderment.
“Oh, and by the way, my name is Celia, Celia Saliss. You can all call me Celia Saliss now and not Miss Saliss, it sounds really old and boring.” Miss Saliss said sharply. “Sit down, girl.” Celia Saliss pointed at Tess’ seat and Tess quickly walked to her seat and sat down, “You, boy. Drake, is it? Well, Drake you’re last.”
Drake sat up straight and regretted everything he was about to say: “I-I don’t really want to say this but … I made up a lie that I was going to die in two months and all my friends believed me. I am anorexic and won’t eat anything, despite the effects from Tess to save my life, which I say thank you for. I am bullied by my friends,” I looked around the room and everyone’s eyes were thin slits, glaring angrily like he was a piece of dirt. Michael banged his left fist against his desk, Celia Saliss glared at me disgusted, and my mouth was in the shape of a dramatic ‘O’ while Tess’ face was twisted in bewilderment and horror. “I guess I will be bullied by them even more now. I’m sorry to you all. Please, can you all forgive me?”
Michael, at that instant, jumped out of his seat and ran towards Drake’s seat with impressive speed and punched Drake in the face, just as he did when Drake was getting off the bus except this time the force and power of the punch was much, much stronger.
Drake fell off his chair and landed on the floor, he struggled to stand back onto his feet as Michael treated him like a football. I ran over to the action and pulled Michael away from Drake and he fell to the floor too.
“Stay away from him!” I snapped. I stared sickly at Celia Saliss as she smirked at the fight and didn’t do anything to stop it.
“You all have too many stress hormones.” Celia Saliss muttered, shaking her head. I looked at her in bewilderment.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

I felt semiconscious as I lifted myself to my feet; I stared blindly around the room, the frustrated faces of my past friends glared at me and didn’t want to take a second glance at me.
“Depression can make you lose interest in daily life, causing you to feel tired all of the time and having no energy. Also, you can also have difficulty sleeping, though some feel that they can’t get out of bed and ‘face the world.’” As Celia Saliss spoke, she wrote the symptoms of depression on the whiteboard at the front of the classroom, no one took attention: Tess sat at the back of the room, her hand supporting her hung head, and she looked really tired; Kathy held her hand out to Michael and pulled him to his feet, locking in a kiss; I lay on the ground, unnoticed and unpopular.
“And, people suffering from depression take no notice in food: a poor appetite. They lose weight dramatically.” Celia Saliss pointed her finger at me, nodding accusingly, “Although, on the other hand, some people overeat and put on weight, which is called ‘comfort eating.’” Celia pointed her finger at Tess this time and fortunately, Tess didn’t notice.
“What about self-confidence?” I asked Celia, “avoiding other people, finding it harder to make decisions, feeling guilty about who you are and what you have done, feeling hopeless, oh and most importantly …” I stared at all my past friends that were glaring at me in confusion. What I was about to say involved everyone in this room, all except for the witty, vicious Celia. “Thinking about …” I took a moment of hesitation, “… suicide.” All my friends turned into stone: they didn’t move and had no emotion on their faces, Kathy and Michael sat down on their previous seats and glared at me, they looked near to crying. “Depression is treatable.” I uttered a sigh. Everything I had just said was scribbled down on the board in bullet points by the squeaky board pen Celia was using.
“That’s … not good, not very impressive at all.” Celia moaned, screwing up her nose.
“Huh? Why?” I asked, standing to my aching feet and pulled my fallen chair back up, placing myself on the metal chair, the metal chair legs slightly dented from the fall.
“Suicide is an easy way out, an easy route on the road of depression. You need to fight against your problems.” Tess said, at the back of the room.
“Exactly … anyone in here who is suicidal, raise your hand.” Everyone in the room raised their hand, except Tess. “What about you? What are the scars from then?”
“Cat scratches, obviously.” Tess moaned.

Half an hour later, after our short break, we had to enter the room individually and Celia would talk through our depression and problems: quite annoying really.
Despite my friends wanting to keep their distance away from me, they listened at the door with me to Kathy’s interview. Michael and Tess frowned deeply as they listened intently to Kathy’s muttering and mumbling.
“I’m good, okay?” Kathy moaned.
“Yeah, of course you are!” Celia said sarcastically, “Anything troubling you?” Then something that had worried me since I’d been here occurred: Celia stared down in horror and anxiety at the object that had slipped out of my pocket and onto the chair I was placed on.
“Nothing …” Kathy mumbled, “Oh, that’s nothing.”
“It doesn’t look like nothing, hand it over.”
Michael gasped on the other side of the door. “That’s what Amethyst left for Kathy before she died. It’s horrid.”
“No, it’s mine!” Kathy moaned.
“Give it here!” Celia snapped through clenched teeth.
“No!” Kathy screamed shrilly.
To see what was happening, the conversation would have to be visual to us, but all we could do was listen.
I heard running footsteps towards the door. Kathy burst through the door and wrapped her arms around Michael, shielding herself from Celia Saliss, the red case clasped in her hands.
I locked the room door and ran down the corridor, Michael and Kathy soon following, Tess began to unlock the door.
“What are you doing?” I asked shrilly, my voice frightened and high-pitched. Tess did not reply but I’m sure, quite positive, that I heard her mumble: ‘it’s all part of a deal. I need that case to get a home.”
“Come on, baby. It’ll be OK.” Michael said wrapping his arms around Kathy’s waist, “It’ll be OK, Kathy.”
“My name is not Kathy.” Kathy said as Michael and her trailed along behind me as we ran down the stairs towards the college entrance where we would escape.
“What is it then?” Michael asked, confounded.
“I’d rather not say.”
“Can I at least guess?” Michael asked.
“Erm … you can have a few guesses then. It begins with an ‘L’. I’m really embarrassed about it …” Kathy muttered nervously.
After some hesitation, Kathy spoke. “I had my name changed when I was bullied by my ‘friends’ while I was dealing d –“
“Never mind, it’s not important.” Kathy sighed, “They’re angry with me now, which is probably why I’ll have to help ‘em again.”
“I don’t understand a word you’re saying so I’ll pretend I’m listening.” Michael chuckled. I was overwhelmed by jealousy. How could he treat such a beautiful girl like that? I hate Michael for taking her away from me.
We ran out of the college entrance, the sweet fresh air welcoming yet the sound of car horns sounding on the roads from car collision was terrible.
I stared over at Kathy, our eyes met and she turned them into thin angry slits and she turned away while my eyes were full of pity.
Tess did not follow; she strangely did not return and stayed with Celia. Whatever they were talking about was unknown to us and we didn’t really care, we were missing the whole day of college off, or ‘skiving’ as I’d usually say.

That day, I ate nothing because all I worried about was Kathy and how she felt about Michael and whether she’d ever like me more than a friend. Although, I don’t eat anything anyway so it meant nothing to me really.
I crossed a small bride towering over a river; Michael and Kathy would have at home and said they’d be kissing, not that I’d wanted to know. I stared down at my blurred reflection in the water: I looked really unhealthy, my face looked like a dark grey colour and purple at the sides like I didn’t even have any fat on me at all. I assumed I was healthy.
I feared the worst would happen tomorrow. I don’t know why. I felt different, like I wasn’t myself.
I heard a constant tapping on the wood of the bridge. I looked across to see a cloaked figure with hair streaming out of the cloak, a dark brown colour.
I stared the figure right in the eye and realised that I knew who this was. I was in the ‘Death District’ even though it wasn’t a district and it was just a field where people would come to take risks.
The person standing in front of me looked tired and had scars up and down her arms and on her face, although her face was recognisable. I used to know her very well because Kathy and I grew up together.
The teenage girl looked pale.
It was Amethyst.
I hadn’t slept in days; I rubbed my eyes continuously, hoping that it was a hallucination.
I pulled the black hood away from her face and realised that she had a pale face, but was not dead. She answered that question for me.
“I didn’t die.” Amethyst said.
“What and how?” I was in shock, my eyes as wide as they could be.
“My body isn’t inside the coffin. I paid Bradley to shoot the car and fake my death, and then he put bags of sand in the coffin before the funeral to act as me. I wanted Kathy to forget about me and so that I could leave the country unnoticed. I survived the crash.” Amethyst’s voice was calm as she spoke.
“I need to tell Kathy!” I frantically searched in my pocket and yanked out my mobile phone, typing away at the lit buttons, making few mistakes.
Amethyst swiped her hand and the back of her hand knocked my phone into the air and over the bridge where is landed with a splash in the water, creating constant pulses before it sank to the bottom of the lake below.
“You need to promise not to tell Kathy. You can’t tell her where I am and I need you to take me to the airport unseen, it’s nearby.” Amethyst moaned.
“What’s in it for me?” I crossed my arms angrily.
“These.” Amethyst searched in her pocket and brought out a packet of tablets, which she shook from side to side in front of my face, “Weight loss tablets.”
I swiped them from her grasp and studied them. Hopefully, these would take back the effects of the weight gain tablets Tess gave me.
Kathy would be so devastated if she knew Amethyst was alive. Kathy has become more suicidal since she discovered that Amethyst deceased. I’m worried about her. Kathy is the love of my life.
I held out my hand to seal the deal and Amethyst shook it. She unbuttoned her cloak and placed it on the side of the bridge.
“I need to get to Vacation Airport, I think it is nearby but I’m not sure. I have a ticket to go to Mexico.”
“That’s it? You’re just going to leave the lie that you’re dead behind?” I exclaimed.
“Yep, that’s about right. Has Kathy received what I ‘left behind’ to her?” Amethyst asked.
“I believe so, yeah. Michael mentioned something about it, it was in a red case and it was said to be ‘horrid.’” I shuddered.
“Perfect.” Amethyst said coldly.
I felt as cold as snow as I walked Amethyst along the path through the forest that would lead us to the airport where she would depart and tear Kathy’s heart apart. I felt sympathy for Kathy, she would be heart broken to discover that Amethyst had fooled her.
I watched the sparrows flutter through the sky, followed by the luminous glow of numerous fireflies, their vibrant colours catching my eye and taking my attention away from Amethyst who was smirking horribly.
Kathy skimmed through my mind: her face, her personality and her humour. I missed her so much and I felt like she meant everything to me, which is peculiar for me to feel this way.
“Are you sure you want to ruin Kathy’s life like this?” I asked.
“Of course, I can’t say why but she ruined my life so I’m making hers a misery.” Amethyst smiled at me as she spoke.
“You’re a horrible person.” I mumbled under my breath so that Amethyst could not hear me.


/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

I hid behind a brick wall, Kathy did not turn around, and she continued to walk down the street. I stared ahead to search for a new hiding place and saw a large green leaved hedge.
When Kathy was a reasonable distance away, I crept slowly ahead and hid behind the hedge. The street remained empty, no one was there and no cars sped past. The only sound was the tapping sound made by the occasional flickering of the street lamps.
I was wearing a large dark blue jumper that was near to black from the camouflage by the depressing darkness to hide my appearance. Kathy didn’t notice I was following her and didn’t know that I needed that small case to gain a home.
I had placed a tracking device on the small case before Kathy had departed from the college. I pulled out a small screen and a red dot appeared flashing on a small, straight line which had a floating orange label written across with the words: ‘Nineteenth Olden Avenue’. Bobbing along was an orange dot following the red dot on the radar, which was I.
I need that case!
I ran slowly ahead and lingered behind Kathy, she still did not turn around.
I jumped behind another hedge ahead in case she got suspicious and she strolled right passed me, not even noticing. I would have grabbed the red case at that moment but it was in the other pocket, frustrating me even more.
She crossed the road and ran onto a large field, near the shops, and looked behind her carefully, still not noticing me.
I sprinted after her and stayed at the entrance of the shop. Something, a sign on the front of the shop door, had caught my eye: ‘free ice cream’. It was either following Kathy to get the small case to allow me a home or have an ice cream and lose track of her, despite the radar in my left hand.
I decided to chase after Kathy, ignoring my obese growling stomach. I ran around the shop entrance and found that Kathy was sitting on a bench facing forward half way on the field, so hopefully she wouldn’t see me sneaking up on her.
I sprinted towards the wooden bench until I reached three metres away from it and crept slowly towards the bench, crouching down and, taking a deep breath, I reached ahead towards the red case that was slowly slipping out of Kathy’s pocket.
My hand grasped the red case but just before I could bring it towards me, Kathy’s hand grabbed mine strongly and twisted it, causing me to drop the red case.
She looked around at me with angry eyes and pulled my hood away. I sighed while she gasped in confusion.
“Tess, what are you doing?” Kathy said angrily through clenched teeth.
“Hi, Kathy, isn’t a lovely day? I didn’t mean anything I just need,“ I grabbed the red case on the bench and ran as fast as I could in the opposite direction.
I turned around to see Kathy sprinting at a faster speed after me. I ran across the field and onto the road, I was close to getting run over by two black Ford cars. I managed to get to the other side of the road and spotted Kathy running across the road, dodging the cars.
A truck with an empty trailer dragging along behind it slowly went by: it was a reflection of myself because I am as large as a truck dragging my dreary depression behind me.
I took a risk. I took a chance. I leapt onto the empty trailer and fell face first, rolling along it and sitting up, consciousness creeping back.
Kathy ran along behind the truck at an impressive speed. Her face was stern and her eyes vicious. Her blazon frightened me.
“Tess, I need that! It’s dangerous!” Kathy was near to tears, “Give it back!”
“You can have it back if you can tell me what is inside it!” I snapped, smirking gleefully at my achievements.
There was a moment of silence.
“You need to realise, Kathy, that what is inside this case will destroy society!” I snapped with integrity.
“I know you Tess, you exaggerate to make matters worse!”
“I’m saving you but you don’t realise that, do you? You’ll only realise when you’re in a confined area below the ground where you will understand you deserve to be and wish to be.”
The truck sped around a corner and Kathy stopped running, she had no more energy. I watched her dubiously as I rolled ahead, leaving my grieving “friend” behind. We would never be friends again after this.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

Tess had taken my red case! I needed that back as a reminder of Amethyst: she was the only part of my family that I had liked because the rest of my family were cruel people.
It was dark still. The lights still flickered down the street. I walked down a dark alleyway buried by a black fog and hidden by a huge sign blocking the entrance, marked: ‘DANGER AREA – do not enter.’
My friends and I called this place: ‘Cold Corner.’ As I progressed further down the alleyway I came upon a familiar figure. He was swallowed by darkness and his cloaked body was covered in fog. His collar hid his face and he leant against the wooden fence that surrounded the alleyway. A small roof on the side of a house that sat next to the tall fence sheltered the alleyway.
Rain powered down with powerful force and clinked against the roof that protected the floor; the rain smacked against my hair and fell into my face, it was so strong I felt like I was drowning.
The teenage boy looked over at me, his face still hidden. I didn’t know, but I was sure he smiled at me. I recognised the distinctive breathing from the boy: he looked calm yet frightened.
I walked over to him and stared into his hazel eyes and he stared into mine, they were identical. He pulled the coat hood away from his face to reveal his identity.
“Kathy, you’re back, finally. How are you? Actually, enough of the small talk, I – we – need you to sell some of the product in all the alleyways in the area.” The boy said quickly.
“Not even a hello?” I shook my head in disappointment which made him chuckle. I wrapped my arms around him and he wrapped his around my waist. We hugged for a long, peaceful moment.
“Kathy, I haven’t seen you in years.” The boy called Freedom smiled.
“Freedom, you’ve changed so much. I’ve missed you a lot!” I whispered in his ear. He kissed me on the cheek as a sign of friendship.
We broke from the hug and he stared into my eyes.
“You do remember what we used to sell?” Freedom asked.
“Yeah, I do.” I sighed deeply.
Freedom felt round in his pocket and brought out a piece of paper which seemed to have a list of items next to small, rectangular boxes which I had to tick whenever the product had been sold.
“You begin again on Monday.” His icy cold hand reached out and touched my hand, making me shudder. We shook hands and exchanged serious glances. The next week was the darkest of my life.


I stood against the wooden, rectangular table in the middle of the abandoned house with no roof and only a ground floor with a table only to occupy it along with a small black radio that lay upon it. There were no stairs and the curtains blocking the smashed windows were moth-eaten.
On the table lay a black plastic bag full of something that gave me a shudder that night. This is the place we used to meet every Monday and it seems that we have begun to meet again.
Freedom prised the sealed black bag open with some scissors and handed over to me a small, silver coated bag.
“The product.” He threw it from one hand to the next, “I need you to sell the whole bag by Friday. We need the money.”
“What for, what exactly do you hope to get out of all this?” I asked rather bewildered and overwhelmed by the quantity of the product.
“Respect, obviously. Everyone around here fights for the most bags sold.” Freedom said slowly.
After some hesitation of thought of: what on Earth are in those bags, this time? How am I going to escape the police again? Last time I ran home, but I don’t have a home anymore!
The question of asking what was inside the bags bobbed in my mind like a lost jellyfish, the feeling of anxiety buzzing around in my head like an angry bee waiting to attack its prey.
He threw a bag at me and I caught it in my grasp. I clasped the bag until it split and a trickle of white powder came out the hole. I gasped.
“You don’t mean …“I gasped once more and stared in horror at the powder now taking over the hard black floor (there were no carpets, this house is being destroyed daily, parts of the house are already halfway across the field, our meeting place will have to be changed soon) and as it ran through my fingers, I looked up and saw Freedom nodding and smirking.
“Yes. I need you to sell this stuff by Friday, remember that! Peter will be helping you as will Gibraleon.” Freedom muttered.
“Who is Gibraleon?” I asked, confounded.
“This guy …” Freedom pointed towards the darkness and a tall, thin figure appeared from the fog. I frowned when I saw him.
“Hi, nice to meet you, who are you?” Gibraleon asked, smiling gleefully. He had matted brown hair, similar to mouldy hay. His eyes were hollows of madness and his face was white and peaked, his eyes glistening and his huge hand reached out for me to shake it, the other hand was missing.
My face was burnt as a brand from being quite abashed; I always get flustered whenever I meet strangers.
“I’m Kathy.” I giggled and shook the large hand.
“So, has he told you about the drugs?” Gibraleon asked, smiling.
I frowned in shock. My eyes were as wide as Gibraleon hands. There was an itching feeling in my stomach. My eyes were stinging and my fear increasing.
“What did you just say?” I exclaimed.
“Nothing, I said nothing.” Gibraleon muttered, shaking his hands in worry. He whispered something to Freedom before turning back to me. His eyes went wide too, “you didn’t tell her what were inside the bags?” he whispered to Freedom.
“No! I thought she knew!” Freedom moaned.
“I am not dealing with drugs!” I exclaimed while anger overwhelmed me and made me flustered.
“Oh yes you are! You did last time!” Freedom snapped.
“Yeah, that was only because you tricked me! I didn’t know until you actually told me what the product was, which was when I’d finished selling and dealing this stuff!” I exclaimed angrily, “Wait, what is it that I have to trade these disgusting drugs for anyway?”
“Ah, well, this is the shocking part. I – we – need you to go to all the usual places: alleyways, street corners, town centres and all at night. I need two thousand pounds by the end of this week and here’s the worst part:” Freedom said worriedly.
What Freedom said next caused my whole body to collapse inside and my life to change dramatically. I had no meaning in life that day, once I heard the heartbreaking yet overwhelming words; I became as cold as ice.
“Well, what we need is a hundred of the object that you found inside Amethyst’s red case. Have you opened it yet?”
I could not speak; I couldn’t even gasp or breathe. I felt like a heavy weight was pressing against my shoulders, weighing me down. I tried to say a quiet ‘yeah’ but words seemed only an old friend to me.

- Amethyst Kimberley –

Drake led me across the field, his backpack trudging along behind him and his tiredness increasing.
I hope that Kathy feels devastated from my ‘death’ and I hope from the contents of the red case that her life has changed dramatically.
My life closed around me as I walked towards the airport, Drake panting from tiredness while I simply inhaled and exhaled normally.
“Well, I guess this is goodbye, then.” I muttered, holding my arms up to hug Drake.
“You sure you don’t want me to come in with you?” Drake looked up at the huge glass dome with white walls then wrapped his arms around me.
“Nah, it’ll be OK.” I uttered a sigh of relief once he had broken the hug.
“And you promise to tell Kathy about the lies?” Drake moaned.
“Yeah, yeah, of course I will!” I ran towards the airport entrance, avoiding the cars rushing by and walked through the automatic doors. Inside were huge screens that indicated when each plane would be departing. There were a number of different stores dotted around the airport and everyone was in a hurry, all the happy families awaiting their journey, which they assumed to be peaceful – but it would not be.
Everything would change today, I’d leave the country and Kathy would realise that the object in the red case means something more than she believes and realises. Of course, I will never tell her that I am alive. She’d hate me all her life.
My dieing wish would be that she never finds out about the dealing and trading of the object in the red case: that would simply ruin my life forever.
I threw my ticket at the woman at the desk who gave me a blue one back and was the only one in the queue; everyone else was already on the plane. I clambered the stairs to the fresh outdoors and ran towards another set of stairs leading up to the blue plane in front of me. I climbed the metal stairs, two at a time towards the entrance of the plane. Once at the top, I gave the smiling woman my second ticket.
“Yes, Amethyst Kimberley, you are at the back of the plane, look for your number.” The woman said.
“What do you mean? I was told I was in first class!” I moaned.
“No, I’m sorry, ma’am but you are at the back today.” The woman replied.
“I demand to go into first class!” I exclaimed.
“I demand you get to your seat or I’m calling security!” The woman snapped. She pulled the earpiece to her mouth and pushed the red button at the side.
“Alright, alright I’ll go to the back!” I snapped, departing immediately to the back of the plane and throwing myself into the seat the ticket indicated and sat back, staring out of the window at the falling sky and grassland as the plane began moving down the runway the second I sat down.
In my head, I said goodbye to Kathy. I took my mobile phone out of my pocket and typed away at the numbers, attempting to make it unnoticeable.

‘Hey Kathy, by the way, I’m still alive. Goodbye, I’m leaving the country to Mexico and hope not to see you again!’

Was I a horrible person? No, of course I wasn’t! I sighed as the message sent and realised that only bad things happen to bad people and no bad things have occurred recently.
I felt the plane shudder for a second and then relax, as did I and felt like my whole life was about to come to an end. I quickly switched off my mobile phone, hoping that because of the interference of my phone didn’t accuse the plane to have some turbulence or even worse!
“Don’t worry passengers; the plane is experiencing some temporary turbulence.” The captain’s voice spoke above me from a speaker. The words relaxed my senses.
A woman strolled by, checking each passenger’s seatbelt. I grabbed her arm with a strong grip.
“C-could I have a whisky before we land?” I asked shakily.
“No, miss. We will be landing shortly.” The woman smiled uneasily.
“How long exactly?”
“35 minutes to be precise.”
“Well, 35 minutes is very long in my perspective. I need a drink or I’ll feint from dehydration.” I gasped heavily continually.
“Then alcohol will do no good; alcohol causes the brain to dehydrate, miss.” The woman walked away and I sighed angrily.
The plane shuddered again and I felt nothing but pain in my stomach: guilt. Kathy would be reading the message thinking that I’m a horrid person, I may be a horrible person but I had to tell her that I was alive. Although, informing her through text is just as worse as breaking up with someone through text.
I felt the plane take a dramatic dive forward and felt myself fall forward. My head hit the seat in front of me with impressive, agonising force.
My head pulsed with pain, I began to panic and my heart beat twice as fast as normal rate. My mind became a blur and my vision was slightly fading. My life was nothing to me anymore as the plane soared at an impressive speed forward.
The front of the plane (first class) had somehow broken off connection with the tail of the plane and rocketed to the ground while passengers flung to the front of the plane, a variety of aged passengers were either injured or killed. All the people at the front of the plane would now be soaring to the threatening ground and would … die.
Blood trickled down my face as the speed of the plane increased. Screaming echoed in the sound of the gushing wind flying around the tail of the plane. Gravity was taking hold of the plane and it soared even faster towards the ground, the image of the blue skies shot by.
Flames erupted in a mixture of colours around me and down the corridor, which I was sitting near. Heat overwhelmed me and the passengers screeched in pain, the propellers went crazy and the most shocking part was, that because the other half of the plane was missing, the propellers were actually visible, the plastic double-glazing had melted from the immense heat that must have been caused by a gas leak or something to do with the breakdown of the plane.
My eyes stung and watered by the strong aroma of burning rubber and my stomach felt as if it was closing when I saw what had happened to all the other passengers.
Nothing came out to save us: there were no lifejackets or breathing tubes coming from the ceiling, only our own fear would protect us. The woman sitting on the other side of the hallway was screaming so loudly that my eardrums felt as if they were about to explode.
Another shudder: all the bags in the compartment fell to the floor with a deafening crash and someone at the front row flew to the ceiling, there once pale face now wine red from blood. My heart skipped a beat as the man that had once flung to the ceiling now soared to the ground – headfirst.
I put my hand to cover my now bleeding nose and mouth. I took some tissue out of my pocket and wiped away the blood but as I did, everyone in the plane fell out of their seats and shot out of the gaping hole at the front of the plane that once was the head of the plane. I was glad about one thing: I’m glad I was put at the back of the plane.
Everything in the plane, except the seats, jolted forward and smashed against floor before being sucked into the gaping hole that was once the nose of the plane.
I screamed and threw myself out of my seat, a risky move yet a frightening one, and attempted to run to the back of the plane where the parachutes are usually found.
I shot to the back of the plane, the powerful gushing air forcing me backwards, making the attempt to be a struggle.
The plane gained speed and I suddenly flung to the front of the plane, a pole that was attached to one of the chairs to the ceiling caught my attention, I grasped it quickly and held tightly.
I swung to and fro by the immense power of the strong gusty wind shooting through the soaring plane and the fire on the left-hand side was increasing in height and temperature.
I shouldn’t have faked my death. I am a good person! I don’t deserve to die!
“I don’t want to die!” I screamed, “I’m a good person! I’m a good person! I’M A GOOD PERSON!”
I cried and screamed at the same time, panic overwhelming me. Fear took control over me.
A man on the right-hand side was trying to save his daughter as she was stuck underneath a broken passenger chair, which crushed the three-year-old.
I couldn’t keep my grip, my hands were covered in my perspiration and the shock of the accident caused me to shiver continuously, I felt numb with horror.
“Don’t kill me! I don’t want to die! I don’t want to die! I DON’T WANT TO DIE! God, forgive me, don’t kill me.” I screeched as I flung forward and out into the open air. I felt as if I was flying, my arms flung in all directions as I soared towards the grassland below. The ironic part of this was that at the moment I was about to die, I felt more alive than I had ever had in my miserable life.
The plane was overhead and soared straight passed me, its blue wings buried in flames.
I was in shock. I was in pain. This time, I will die.
I shot through the sky and realised that my worst phobia was heights and made my heart beat like a drum. My fingers tickled and my hands felt no longer my own.
I was close to the ground, too close. The sea neared my outstretched hands: I cannot swim.
Before I knew it, the depths of the sea swallowed me and the water muffled my screaming. I was drowning in the roaring noise above me and the strong current of water was surrounding me.
Water filled my lungs. I had no oxygen. I was sinking further … further … further.
I could feel the pain of a stab wound where my heart should be. A pulsing pain shot through my body.
My blood ran cold.
My heart stopped.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

My mobile phone erupted with noise. I swiped it out of my pocket and whispered under my breath: ‘somebody loves me’.
I gasped when I saw who had sent me a text. Amethyst’s name appeared upon the screen and I slowly clicked: ‘read’.

‘Hey Kathy, by the way, I’m still alive. Goodbye, I’m leaving the country to Mexico and hope not to see you again!’

Who would send such a horrible message? Someone must have got hold of Amethyst’s phone and sent a horrendous message: a sick joke.
I threw my mobile phone onto the cracked floor of the abandoned house.
“So, are you in or out?” Freedom asked.
I looked up angrily, tears in my eyes. “Yes. I’ll help you.”
“Excellent.” Gibraleon said.
I stared down at the smashed remains of my mobile phone. Amethyst was dead and I knew that. She wouldn’t fake death, would she? Or would she …
I grabbed hold of the bag and hugged it to my chest. “I will help you. I want more of what is inside my sister’s case. On one condition …” I muttered with my eyes as angry slits and my body shaking uncontrollably.
“Yeah, anything of course, we just need your help.” Freedom said. He looked calm.
“I need the original back.” I grumbled.
“What do you mean ‘the original’?” Gibraleon asked, confounded.
“The original red case that was left to me in my sister’s will was stolen from me by my best friend. I need it back. I don’t know why she has taken it. I want it back!” I screamed at their shocked faces, Gibraleon mouth dropped while Freedom smirked weirdly.
Freedom bent down and picked up the remains of my mobile phone, staring at the surprisingly still lit screen with the message still visible, despite the cracked screen and split battery: the phone must have crashed.
His smirk grew and I stared at him angrily, awaiting him to speak.
“This message was sent half an hour ago.” Freedom said.
“How do you know that?” I asked.
“It says at the bottom of the screen what time it was sent and received. There is a half an hour difference between the two. I have one question for you: have you listened to the radio?” Freedom still seemed to smirk uncontrollably.
“N-n-no, why do you ask?” I stuttered, becoming slightly frightened.
Freedom scarily chuckled. “Listen carefully.” Freedom pushed the red button on the black radio and tuned it. A muffled hissing sound came from the speaker as it scanned the channels until a male voice began to crackle.

‘In other news, the Sixty-three Aqua Blue Flight appeared to be on course until its journey across the North Atlantic Ocean towards Mexico where the plane mysteriously lost control and began to rocket towards the ocean below. Two hundred and fifty-three people were killed, three injured and one survived. Further information can be found on the E.C.C website.’

Freedom turned down the volume and stared at me uncertainly and worried.
“The message must have been from Amethyst after all. She lied to me, she lied to everyone!” I screamed into my hands and collapsed to my knees.
Freedom hovered above me and picked me up by my arms. I wrapped my legs around his waist for support or I’d fall back.
“We’ll get the original case, although there is only one way to get it back and it may surprise you.” Freedom muttered.
“What’s the only way?” I asked through sobbing.
“Murder,” Freedom whispered and after some hesitation, he spoke again, “are you still going to help us?”
I jumped out of his arms and landed with a thud on the ground.
“Yes, just get that case back, whatever it takes!” I snapped and I shook Freedom’s hand, his hand was still while mine shook uncontrollably. “You won’t hurt Tess, will you?”
“It depends, really.” Gibraleon answered before Freedom.
“Just don’t let it be a slow death.” I whispered through sobbing.
“It’ll be a quick death, don’t you worry. That is the sort of thing we do everyday.” Freedom smirked again. I became cold again.

I had stalked the darkness that week; I hid beneath the sickening shadows and kept out of harms way yet what I was doing was clearly wrong and atrocious.
I had sold the maximum amount they had told me to sell and it turned out that all I was selling to people was salt and made the people believe it was something else, so my conscience cleared when I discovered the relieving news.
The original red case still wasn’t back to me. They had searched everywhere for the sly Tess and still had no luck; however they did find an empty packet of tablets with Tess’ name marked upon it near Drake’s house.
Once I had got them enough money to buy millions of the contents of the red case, they let me go yet they were clearly angry with me for time spent on looking for Tess.
Wednesday night was as lonely as the other days; I awaited the group’s arrival at the small, abandoned house.
They appeared from out of the bushes protecting the view of the house two hours later than they had intended to show up.
“Why on Earth are you late?” I snapped at them.
“Do you really want to know, Kathy?” Freedom said, looking me in the eye as they made their way up the steep hill that ran around the destroyed, abandoned house. His voice was strangely full of sympathy.
“Yes, I do.” I said with my voice rather low.
“Tess is no longer … here, if you understand what I mean.” Freedom’s smile formed into his snake-like smirk.
“You killed Tess?” My voice was shaky.
“Only because she wouldn’t tell us where the red case could be found and she mentioned something about a home, although she didn’t tell us where she had hidden the red case. It’s gone.” Freedom continued to smirk while Gibraleon uttered a sigh.
“I didn’t kill her, he did.” Gibraleon sighed again, pointing an accusing finger at Freedom.
I picked up the moneybag containing all the profit from the business and threw it at Freedom, the string tied around the bag untangled as it hit Freedom’s legs and the money flew out of the opening.
It flew in all directions as I sped passed them, knocking Gibraleon to his side. I ran through the long, thick grass and towards the metal gates, which acted as a barrier to this creepy place.
I pushed through the gates and out into the night: freedom. The though of the word ‘freedom’ made me think of my ex-friend called Freedom: the ex-friend who had murdered Tess, my best friend, which made Freedom and the gang another segment of my messed up life.

I had halted my sprinting for now and walked across the field that had once been the place where Michael and I were the closest we’ve ever been. I’m not even sure about our relationship anymore: do we love each other or not?
I had spotted a certain animal, which brought back some memories as I pushed through, and trampled the long grass and headed towards the short grass dotted with flowers with vivacious colours glimmering at me. A horse trampled through the grass, its brown head stared at me uncertainly.
I slowly made my way towards it; it was so close with its eyes not far from mine. The horse made a threatening noise at me; its eyes looked as if they had become angry slits.
“Shush, it’s okay. I’m not going to hurt you. I need you so that I can ride to Michael to tell him how I feel before he does what he said he’d do: commit suicide. He’s going to commit suicide in two hours! I know you can’t understand me but I need to get to Michael. Please!” Tears streamed down my face and my voice seemed hollow with sadness. I put my hand out and stroked its face. The horse stood on its hind legs, causing me to stumble backwards. My hands sprawled out at my sides and I pushed myself back up as the horse turned around, its hind legs facing me, landing back on the floor.
I stood back up and the horse’s back legs flew back into my chest, I flew backwards and landed onto the floor after a few seconds in immense pain.
My hands flung to my chest, pressing against my ribs that were pulsing with prickling pain. Fate has its tricks.
My lungs felt like tissue and my eyes were also stinging. Was I going to die? I hoped so.
Mobile phones used to be my enemy; the radiation near my head frightened me that it might affect my brain: phones do that though. I pressed the phone against my ear after dialling the number for an ambulance before becoming feint.

I lay in the hospital bed; the heaving pain in my lungs had ceased. A doctor hovered over me like a watchful eagle. His hand was clasped tightly around my wrist so he checked my pulse carefully.
“Good afternoon Miss Kimberley. I am Doctor Walls and I am treating your current position. The data here,” The doctor tapped the clipboard with his pen, “suggests that you need to have an operation on your lungs and possibly a heart transplant as you seem to have a hole on the surface which, rather sadly enough, decreases your heart rate and breathing.”
My eyes were flicking open and shut. “D-don’t I have a choice?”
“Of course you do.” The doctor looked to the door, “Enter.” He said loudly.
The door burst open and in came Michael, Drake, Freedom, Bradley and Gibraleon. No Tess and no Amethyst. They were breathing heavily and scurried around my bedside.
“Kathy, are you okay? Please be okay! Please!” Michael said quickly as he grabbed my hand. Gibraleon, Drake and Freedom all sat on the chairs against the wall near the door. They looked shy and abashed.
“I’m fine.” My voice was croaky.
“The poem, it was all true! Kathy, I love you that much! I don’t want you to die, please don’t!” Michael was hurrying through his words, crying so deeply that his words weren’t understandable.
“It ‘s okay, it ‘s okay. I was riding to you to tell you how I feel.” I croaked, sobbing uncontrollably, “I’m in so much pain.”

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

I locked in a kiss with Kathy and it felt right. I felt like a fire was burning inside of me and the fear of Kathy’s death made me feel freezing inside and I shook and I held her hand. I pulled away from the kiss and stared into her eyes as she stared into my distraught eyes.
“So, Kathy what is your decision? If you have the operation you may live to a minimum of five years, if you don’t then you will live to a minimum of a month. The smoking has altered your life expectancy too as lung disease may occur, partly because of the large alcohol consumption.” The doctor said.
I stared into Kathy’s eyes as her lips shook and her answer would depend on her life. I hoped that she would decide to have the operation, as I’d be able to ask her the question that has been lingering in my mind for months.
“I don’t want to have the operation. I want to die.” Kathy muttered and the doctor scribbled down her reply on the clipboard. I uttered a sigh and my frown grew deeper.
“Please, Kathy. Could you please live for me?” I sobbed into the hand I had put over my mouth.
“Kathy, please!” Drake snapped, his squeaky voice filling the awkward silence.
The boy with brown hair was smirking scarily while the boy with the huge hands frowned deeply.
“I don’t want to live! You all know that!” Kathy screeched, sitting up in the hospital bed.
“Do you have someone, a deceased friend or family member with the same blood type, who will give you a heart to replace yours?” The doctor said, shaking slightly.
“No, so I won’t have the operation.” Kathy whispered as her tear filled face pressed into her hands. The machine that was taking note of her pulse began to increase rapidly, the beep higher and faster.
There was some hesitation before I glanced around the room at the heads hanging down; everyone was disappointed with their selves. Not even Kathy’s cousin volunteered.
“I will,” I said with my facial expression blank and my face pale, “Please live for me.” I buried my hand in my pocket and pulled out a small, red case. Kathy gasped as I showed her what was in my hand.
“Is that the – “Kathy had put her hand to her mouth in bewilderment and shock as she shook violently.
“No,” I interjected, “it’s not the red case Amethyst gave to you. I had it made red especially for you. Inside the case is something different.” I opened the red case, my heart smacking against my chest.
A glowing amethyst diamond engagement ring glimmered at Kathy as she was in immediate shock.
“Kathy, the love of my life, will you marry me?” I asked shakily.
After some hesitation she gave me a hug and whispered her answer in my ear.
“Of course I will.” She pulled away from the hug and was full of sympathy, “You’d die for me?” Kathy sobbed even worse.
“Of course I would, you mean more than the world to me.” I said slowly.
“But, if I marry you, I’ll only be married to you for three days. In three days I have the transplant. Today, I have the operation.” Kathy had an expression of deep thought on her face, “I don’t want your heart – it’s insane! The Doctors wouldn’t allow it anyway unless you were … dead.” Kathy lifted the ring out of the case and slotted it onto her quivering finger.
“It doesn’t bother me, I’ll take an overdose of pills if I have to; three days married to you would be like going heaven three days early before I die. You are my heart and soul. The way to show how much I care about you if you would have died is to actually give you my heart so that you can live a long and happy life. I care about you enough to give you my life.” I cried as I closed the red case and gave it to her. Amethyst diamonds were dotted around the opening. It was exactly like the red case that Amethyst had given her.
“Are you the same blood type as Kathy?” The doctor asked me.
“Yeah, it is.” I replied.
“Amethyst was alive.” Kathy and I stared at Drake uncertainly as he uttered painful words for Kathy. He chose a bad time.
“So it is true?” Kathy snapped, sitting up further and staring at Drake angrily.
“I escorted her to the airport. S-s-she got on the plane but it crashed on the journey to Mexico. She’s dead. The coffin her body was originally meant to be in was filled with bags of sand.” Drake whispered and his head still hung low.
“My sister lied to me? I had received a message from her but I thought it was a stupid practical joke!” Kathy snapped. I was seeing her differently. Do I really want to marry Kathy? My hands started to tingle and my eyes began to water. Do I really want to kill myself so she can have my heart? I don’t want to now but I can’t change my mind so suddenly.
I shivered and Kathy squeezed my hand painfully hard. “Don’t worry; I love you enough to make your life happy.” I said as Kathy’s head fell into her pillow.
“I’m afraid Kathy will have to leave you all now. Her operation will occur in exactly ten minutes. Wish her luck.” The doctor pushed the bed across the room by its wheels and towards the open door where Kathy departed out into the corridor. My hand was still holding hers as I followed her out of the door. As she turned a corner, only my fingertips touched her hand and her life before she made her way down the gloomy corridor towards a life changing operation.
As I was inside the halls of the hospital, staring down into darkness towards the love of my life wearing the ring I had stolen, I felt a stabbing pain in my heart as if my heart knew that it would no longer be the centre of my life and my only saviour.
The excruciatingly painful throbbing in my hipbone was stronger that day: the steel bullet still buried beneath the bone marrow. I put my hand to my heart as Kathy’s eyes met mine once more before she turned another corner and was out of sight. One hand was placed over my beating heart and the other over my stinging hipbone.
“Kathy, I love you!” I shouted down the corridor, my voice echoing likes the beat of a drum. I heard no reply. Had she feinted? Was she okay? I hope so; I hope on my own life that she survives the twenty percent chance of survival operation.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

I lay in the warmth of the hospital bed with no injury or near death experience. I could watch television here, drink what I want and eat what I want, order nurses to help with anything: the life of hospital luxury!
Kathy’s red case sat in the safe at my bedside on my chest of drawers, a large combination protecting it that was difficult to remember, although, the combination was written on a small piece of paper in my pocket. The contents of the red case remained unknown to me until I opened it when I was a far distance away from the mischievous Kathy. A mixture of bewilderment and shock had overcome me that night once the red case had been opened. A chill crept up my spine even thinking about it.
The nurse on my left was clearing out my chest of drawers, kneeling beside the bed and piling my clothes up to take them to be washed. Luxury life!
My eyes went wide when a bed strolled passed, occupied by someone I thought I had imagined as her eyes locked into mine, similar to angry red slits. Her pale face looked as if it had become red with anger and frustration, a breathing tube fixed to her heavily breathing mouth. I blinked continuously and pinched myself to be sure I wasn’t dreaming. The pinch did hurt though as I realised she was real. I gulped.
“Nurse, who was the patient that just passed my door and what is she doing here?” I asked shakily from worry.
“Dear Tess, that was Miss Kathy Kimberley, she has arrived here to have an operation on her lungs, why do you ask?” The nurse said in her sweet voice.
“It’s nothing. She looked familiar, that’s all. She’s an old friend.” I muttered.
“She threw you an evil look though, friends don’t do that, my dear,” the nurse said, chuckling and standing up with the pile of clothes in her folded arms.
“I stole something from her, she wouldn’t be happy.” I whispered to myself so that the nurse could not hear me, despite her hearing aid was pinned to her ear.
“What was that, dear?” the nurse asked.
“Nothing at all, really it’s nothing.” I said.
I wonder if I could pull her breathing tube away from her mouth, what would happen if I did?
“Nurse, if I pulled the breathing tube away from her face, what would happen?” I asked.
“Obviously, my dear, the oxygen that she needs so dearly would not be able to enter her lungs without the help of the breathing tube. She will decease.” The nurse spoke softly.
“Okay, thank you for telling me.” I muttered as the nurse departed from the quiet private ward.
I heard a constant tapping against the marble floor as another familiar face ran by and stopped outside the door with tears streaming down and dripping onto his arms, bloodshot eyes catching my attention.
“Michael?” I said with my voice high and squeaky.
His head turned: he looked terrible and very distraught. His bloodshot eyes became wide with amazement.
“Tess, is that you?” Michael shouted at me in shock.
“No, it’s your mother. Of course it’s me!” I snapped back.
Michael walked in. “Whoa, you’ve gained weight.”
“What a nice thing to say, you’re very good with acquaintances aren’t you?” I said sarcastically, turning away angrily.
“Kathy has just gone for her operation. I offered to give her my heart so she’d live.” Michael said as he sat down at the end of my hospital bed.
“Don’t be so dramatic, I’m sure she doesn’t need your love to survive.” I said, shaking my head and rolling my eyes.
“No! Literally, I’m giving my heart to her. I have the same blood type and I love her so much so I decided, quite stupidly, that I’d give her my heart through transplant.” Michael half smiled, half frowned.
“That’s stupid, isn’t it? You’re crazy! You’d be dead! Do you study science at all? Your heart pumps your blood around your body and you need it to live! You’d be dead!” I snapped, sitting up in my bed.
“That’s how much I care about her. We are getting married tomorrow so that we have three days marriage before the transplant. Her life means more to me than my own.” Michael said, smiling fully now.
“I’m sure she’d say the same about you, she’s suicidal. It’s like throwing your heart away, her hobby is self harming so I don’t think your heart will be much use to her for long, really.” I moaned.
“Typical! Not even a ‘congratulations Michael, I hope you have a happy three days of marriage together.’” Michael said.
“Three days! What a long and progressive married life!” I said, sarcastically, “That’s not even long enough to have children and do you even have a job to go to?”
“I’ve never thought about having children with her, not that I want to. I don’t have a job; I see no need in one. Do you? Oh no, you don’t do you, because you live in a hospital!” Michael shouted at me, standing up, “I’ll be going now then. I’ll come visit you, even though there is nothing at all wrong with you.” He walked towards the door. I waved him goodbye and waved goodbye to his poor beating heart that would no longer belong to him.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

The ring on my finger glistened like a shining star that needs to be followed towards freedom. I thought of marriage: a white wedding with amethyst diamonds thrown into the air instead of confetti, all my friends smiling at me and my whole life reflected on that day: the happiest moment of my life.
I felt no pain still but the doctors surrounding me seemed worried, probably because they would not succeed.
“Now, Kathy, we are going to inject you with anaesthetic which will make it seem like you are asleep but you will awake after the operation. Are you alright?” the doctor from the previous ward said.
“Yeah, I am.” I said shakily, my voice and body shook uncontrollably and my eyes watered from increasing fear.
I looked away from what the doctor was injecting into my arm and out of the frosted window. The snow-coated branches on the outside were like large spider legs creeping up the glass.
“Try counting to ten, that’s what all our patients do,” the doctor said with many other doctors around him and a white mask covered the faces of the staring people who would ruin my useless life.
One … two … three … four, but before I could count any further, I felt a stabbing pain in my right wrist and my mouth became dry. It was a feeling that someone would get when they were drowning. I felt as if I was falling through the sky and painfully hitting the ground below becoming nothing. My world became darkness.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –

Two days later …

Amethyst diamonds sparkled through the shining, spectacular star filled sky: stars of all sizes shining down at us and their sparkling reflection on the minute amethyst diamonds made the diamonds blend with the lights in the sky with confetti fluttering through the sky like glowing birds.
Our wedding began at night and we decided to have it on the field where we were the closest we’d ever been. We were going to have our wedding where we had our first kiss to make it more romantic but I don’t think a wedding on a bus would be as great as it sounds.
I was pacing back and forth, nervously lingering at the back of the forest surrounding the field where our wedding would begin in twenty minutes. I had run away to realise what I was doing: sitting against a tree stump in my tuxedo with my heart hammering against my chest.
I heard the crunching of twigs snapping underneath footsteps hurrying towards me in the darkness. I began to get worried about who it could be; if anything happens to me then Kathy has no heart and dies.
“Hello?” I croaked.
A figure appeared in the luminous light rays of the menacing moon and her face was no longer covered by darkness.
“Hello Michael, congratulations.” Chelsea said with her arms crossed and shivers running up and down her arms from the frosty weather. The perfect theme for a wedding: showered with snow.
“Chelsea? What are you doing here? You weren’t invited, were you?” I spoke quite fast from increasing nervousness; I believe I was getting ‘cold feet’ as someone would say if they were having second thoughts about their wedding.
Chelsea was wearing a pink shirt and blue jeans, not exactly dressed smartly for the occasion.
“I just … got in.” Chelsea muttered, stepping closer.
“Why are you here?” I asked sharply.
“Because, Michael, I still love you.” Chelsea looked two steps closer.
“You left me for Bradley, what about him?” I asked through clenched teeth, sliding further up the tree stump.
“He treats me like dirt, I miss what we had. How close we were.” Chelsea whispered, very close to me now, our faces too close for my liking.
“Thank you for telling me that on my wedding day.” I said sarcastically.
“Don’t have that heart transplant! Please!” Chelsea edged closer.
“What does it have to do with you?” I said angrily.
“I want your heart, not literally though, and I want you to have mine. Remember what good times we had?” Chelsea put her hand out towards me and touched my quivering face.
She leaned in to kiss me and I leaned in too and before I knew what was happening, we were kissing. Kathy blanked from my mind and my heart leapt to my throat. I couldn’t breathe. I had a funny feeling in my stomach: this isn’t right but I think it is.
I pulled away. “No, this isn’t right.”
“But it feels right.” Chelsea said.
“I suppose. But I’m getting married! Doesn’t that mean anything to you?” I snapped back at her.
“Not when love gets in the way.” Chelsea whispered in my ear, our faces really close, the tips of our noses touching.
The shout of the wedding bells echoed throughout the forest and caused me to jump up and out of Chelsea’s arms.
“I’m saved by the bell, lucky me.” I muttered under my breath.
“You’ll only be married for a day!” Chelsea snapped.
“That’s love’s decision.” I smiled and ran the way I came through the forest and left behind the bewildered Chelsea. My heart bled for her yet my heart cried for Kathy.
My heart hammered faster against my chest: do I keep my heart and get married to someone who I can spend my whole life with or do I lose my heart (literally) and be married for a day?
The wedding isle came in view. I stared ahead to see Kathy smiling at the end of the isle, ready to walk on her own (her father wouldn’t come, her mother wouldn’t either) down the pathway to marriage.
I ran to the walls made of different types of flowers surrounding the wedding, it was amazing how someone could make a wall of flowers, wires holding them all together and amethyst diamonds hidden beneath the flower heads in memory of Kathy’s sister.
Sweet, soft music was floating around the wedding from the organ at the front of the isle where a stage was set up with steps to climb onto it and the vicar smiled at the family and friends that were here.
My family was on one side with Drake hidden at the back and on the right-hand side were Kathy’s family and some of her childhood friends with Freedom, Bradley and Gibraleon hidden at the back and a friend she hadn’t spoke to in years: Jasmine. Tess wasn’t here.
Kathy began walking when the wedding tune began to play and everyone was staring at her and the white dress trailing along behind her with, obviously, really minute amethyst diamonds fixed onto the veil.
Some people even got out handkerchiefs and wept into them when they say Kathy in her white dress.
I smiled around to everyone as I stood at the end of the isle with the vicar, waiting for Kathy to reach me. I spotted something that made my eyes narrow: Drake was sniggering at the back of the room; he looked angry and kept kicking the pew in front of him. Church pews were moved here for people to sit onto, except for the occasional wooden chair that was brought here for people who did not have a seat.
Kathy joined me at the front of the isle. She smiled gleefully at me. The engagement ring was still placed on her ring finger, an amethyst diamond ring.
I felt as if Amethyst was here with us, watching over us and wanting this to happen.
The music stopped as the vicar began to speak.
“We are gathered here today to unite Kathy Rachel Kimberley and Michael Matthew Winters in holy matrimony.” The vicar said as the area became as silent as a graveyard, “You may now announce your vows. Do you, Kathy Rachel Kimberley, take Michael Matthew Winters to be your lawful wedded husband to have and to hold for better or worse until death parts you?”
“I, Kathy Kimberley, take thee, Michael, to be my wedded husband. With deepest joy I come into my new life with you. As you have pledged to me your life and love, so I too happily give you my life, and in confidence submit myself to your headship. You, Michael, have given me your heart to save my life and I will cherish it with as much love as you have given unto me.
“Your love has made my life complete and a married life of only one day is better than no days at all. You mean everything to me and I want you to know, the owner of my heart will always be you for eternity. Therefore, throughout life, no matter what may be ahead of us, I pledge to you my life as an obedient and faithful wife.
“Your heart will be inside me but you will always have my heart for eternity and I will treasure our memories together and they will fill my life with the wonders to come. Through the pressures of the present and the uncertainties of the future I promise to be faithful to you. I will love, serve, and obey you as long as we both are alive. I’ve always thought that I’d be alone, until I met you and my whole life lit up like heaven. Please, wait at the gates of heaven for me and then I will give you your heart back as you already have my heart.” Kathy finished her vows and was weeping the whole way through, so was I. Her vows touched me inside and I felt one hundred percent positive that my heart should belong to her. She smiled at me and it warmed my heart.
“Michael Matthew Winters, do you take Kathy Rachel Kimberley to be your lawful wedded wife to have and to hold for better or worse until death parts you?” The vicar grumbled.
“I will wait at the gates of heaven for you and hope that my heart fills you with happiness for eternity. You have lit up my life and will be in my life for as long as I live. You are my heart and soul and I will keep near to you, guide you, protect you and hold you in my heart for as long as I breathe. Keep me near to you as I will keep you near to me. I love you more than I can imagine. So, yes, I take thee, Chelsea, to be my lawful …” I trailed off as everyone in the room gasped. Kathy’s smile faded into a deep frown. One tear streamed down my face and I became cold. I looked over at Chelsea and she smirked happily.
“Keep your heart!” Kathy snapped and the engagement ring on her finger slipped off and she threw it at my face, it hit me directly underneath my left eye, causing it to twitch.
I blinked and hoped then when my eyes reopened that everything would be okay and that nothing bad occurred. My eyes opened to disaster.
Kathy glared at me crossly. The vicar was bewildered. Everyone at the service had a disappointed or fuming glare and the wedding bells had halted in the church across the field.
“Of course, sorry I meant Kathy. Of course I meant Kathy. Sorry?” I said as Kathy backed away from me.
“I don’t want to get married to you! I express my love to you through vows and you say her name!” Kathy snapped, pointing angrily at Chelsea.
“Can we just please get married?” I asked and I expected a negative answer.
After some hesitation, Kathy snapped at me with venom in her words. “Yeah, fine!” she had her arms crossed angrily and her nose was scrunched up, which is what she usually did when she was stressed.
“Now, it is the exchanging of rings.” The vicar said, still in shock from the previous incident. “Where is the ring bearer?”
Drake got out of his seat and ran up the isle, sprinting up the steps. “Here.” He gave me my ring to give to Kathy and ring I would receive to Kathy, although she stared at it like it was a piece of dirt.
“Kathy Rachel Kimberley, you begin.” The vicar said softly.
“I give you this ring; wear it with love and joy. I choose you to be … my husband: to have and to hold, from this day forward. For better, for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to have and to cherish, as long as we both shall live. Whatever!” Kathy snapped the whole thing through clenched teeth and glared at me angrily. She threw the ring at me and I caught it just before it rolled down the stairs. I placed it on my finger, frowning.
“You both have exchanged love for each other; you may kiss the bride.” The vicar said. We had asked for a short wedding service.
“As if, forget it! I’m not going anywhere near his lips!” Kathy snapped at my face.
“Now, you must kiss to consummate the marriage.” The vicar moaned.
“Fine then, I’ll kiss the traitor!” Kathy snapped while I stayed silent.
As we leaned in to kiss it was the slowest time we’d ever leaned in to kiss. It had passed two minutes by the time we had kissed and there was no love or joy behind it because she hid her lips with her finger.
Everyone applauded softly. The vicar sealed the marriage and as soon as he said the words: ‘I now pronounce you husband and wife’ we didn’t embrace in a hug or continue to kiss; we instantly ran the opposite direction. The love between us had disappeared.

The last day of my life …

We didn’t have a divorce and we didn’t change our minds about having the heart transplant. We had forgiven each other – I think.
I lay on the blue mattress a few centimetres away from Kathy’s red mattress supported by four metal legs. I smiled over at her and she glared angrily back at me. We lay at our sides so that we were face to face.
“I’m giving you my heart and we’re still married. You can’t hate me, please don’t hate me.” I whispered over at her.
“I don’t want your heart, I don’t want to kill you!” Kathy snapped, “But you’re right,” Kathy smiled, “I love you more than life itself, if I die in this operation then we shall die married. No one can just switch out of love with someone.”
“Yeah, except marriage lasts until death parts us.” I complained.
“You just had to ruin the moment, didn’t you?” Kathy moaned.
“We’re really gonna do this. I’m really going to save your life.” I wept as I spoke, causing Kathy to cry as well.
“I’m really going to miss you. I love you so much, you know that don’t you?” Kathy whispered.
The doctor would be here any second: the last seconds of my life.
“I know, of course I do. After I heard your vows I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with you by my side. You mean the world to me.” I said, still crying.
“I love you, too. You know that poem you wrote me?” Kathy said.
My heart sank. “The one you tore up?”
“No, the one I tore up then stuck back together and framed in my room at the hotel I’m staying at. That poem lit me up every time I read it and now I think I won’t be able to read it anymore.” Kathy muttered.
“Why’s that?”
“Because it will remind me of you … I will always love you but I can’t accept your heart. There is a recently deceased family member with the same blood type after all. I’m going to have his heart.” Kathy whispered softly.
I stared at the clock.
“Three minutes left to live.” I said as I stared into Kathy’s watering eyes, it was the most distraught I’d ever seen her.
“I know, it’s terrible, why did you offer to spare your life for me?” Kathy wiped the tears form her eyes.
“You know the answer to that: because I care about you more than life itself.” I wiped the tears from my eyes too.
I stared at her and she stared at me. I leant closer and so did she. We kissed one last time and I knew I’d never be able to kiss her again. She was perfect and I cared about her so much.
How could I have been so stupid? I said the wrong name! If I hadn’t kissed Chelsea before the wedding then I might not have said her name. I’ll have to remember next time to say the correct name … but there is no next time. My heart will no longer belong to me and lead my life.
I’m going to die. I’m never going to be able to live a full life, I’m never going to be able experience new things, I’m never going to see my family or friends anymore; they weren’t even allowed in here with me.
I placed my hand onto my heart and felt its steady beating as I continued to kiss Kathy. Goodbye, heart. Goodbye, life. Goodbye, future.
We stopped kissing. It was impossible to kiss and cry at the same time.
“Are you alright?” I asked shakily.
“Just wait a little bit longer and our love will be gone. I’ll miss you so much.” Kathy replied through tears, her tears streamed down her face and landed on my arm. I stared at her transparent tears and felt a feeling of loss. She put her hand up and gently touched my chin; moving my face to look at hers because I was staring down in abashment, “Live a full life, Michael, because I don’t want your heart.”
I half smiled, half frowned. My tears danced down my face and splashed against her arm. I felt cold and lost.
The squeaking of the hospital door opening made me instantly close my eyes.
“Turn over, please. This is a very tricky process. Some more doctors will be coming in shortly.” The doctor said, although I couldn’t see him because my eyes were closed and they will be for this whole operation … and afterwards.
“Now, don’t worry, this wont hurt a bit.” The doctor chuckled, “I’m sure you’ll have a heart beating good time.”
I felt a stabbing pain in my arm, which sent a shock up and down my arm: anaesthetic. I’d be asleep soon and once I’m asleep I’ll never awake again. Kathy was asleep before me so I made a deal with the doctor.
“Doctor Gordon, I know she wants the recently deceased organ donor’s heart but give her mine. I love her so much that I want her to have my heart.” I asked desperately.
“I’m afraid we can’t do that, Mike. Now, would you kindly leave the room please?” Doctor Gordon asked impatiently.
“Look,” I dug into my pocket and frantically brought out a huge amount of money and placed it on Kathy’s bed, “Take that and take my heart, please. I want her to have my heart!”
The doctor, my recent carer, considered this.
I threw more money onto the pile.
“Lay down, Mike. I may get arrested for this but you’ve given me more money than what I get paid and it’s the least a carer can do. I was once a con man, I’m used to this sort of thing. Take these,” The doctor handed me some pills from out of his coat pocket, “Now, lie down and I will begin the cardiac transplantation.”
I threw the ‘death’ pills down my throat and waited.
My heart beat against my chest as fast as lightning and as painful as a knife stabbing it. Usually when my heart beats this fast I hate it and try to slow down its pace, but this time I cherished every beat.
I didn’t want to open my eyes, I wanted to get used to having my eyes closed. Kathy is all that went through my mind: everything about her.
The stabbing pain had disappeared and a stinging pain had replaced it, my arm was begging for the pain to stop. By now, the anaesthetic would be flowing down my bloodstream and slowly breaking down my senses.
“Kathy, I love you.” I said croakily.
Did I say it or did I think it?
“Kathy, I love you more than anything.” I whispered gently.
I feel so dizzy I’m not sure whether I’m speaking or thinking words.
“Michael, I love you and I’ll miss you so much. I’ll miss you forever, Michael.”
Was that Kathy or my imagination?
Kathy was asleep so it can’t be her.
“I love you. I love you, Kathy. I love you.”
I snapped at the top of my voice but I still felt as if I didn’t say anything. Maybe I’m mumbling.
I felt like ice, my mind was foggy and my eyes stung which caused my vision to jerk sideways.
“I love you too and always will.”
I’m sure I heard those words, I’m sure I heard her.
“I …” The words trailed off and I weren’t sure that I actually said them. I was going to tell her where the red case was but I didn’t have any strength to. I was nothing. My name meant nothing.
The bulb that lit up my life broke into pieces and the ‘light’ in my head went out.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I awoke with a prickling feeling where my heart lived. I put my hand to my (Michael’s) heart and the beating was a lot faster and steadier.
I felt physically sick and overwhelmed with the feeling throbbing in my mind and stomach.
I looked over at the other mattress but my vision was jerking from left to right in a great speed.
I closed my eyes quickly and opened them again and my vision was clear again. The other mattress was empty: Michael was no longer there.
I was worried and bewildered. My mind was blank. Michael was dead! I will never see his face again. I miss him already.
Michael’s life is mine now … his heart belongs to me. I got up and lifted my shirt up to see a huge, circular scar around my heart.
The room was dimly lit and no doctors were present. I’d be moving to a different ward soon where I would have to rest for a few days.
The door seemed doubled by my jerking vision and the ceiling felt as if it was closing down to the floor. What was happening to me?
A voice shot through my mind.
“Kathy, I love you!”
I believed it was my memory flashing by, but then I hard the voice again.
“Kathy, I love you more than anything!”
It was a familiar voice but my memory was blank. I fell back onto the mattress and put my hands to my forehead.
“I love you! I love you, Kathy! I love you!”
The voice was a sharp whisper. Then something even more peculiar happened:
“I … love you. The red case is in Tess’ ward, remember that.”
I closed my eyes and remembered it all: I remembered everything before I was put to sleep. Michael had his eyes closed and he was shouting my name. It was like when he was chasing after me when I was leaving the country on the bus. I promised I wouldn’t leave him but now that he’s gone I can do whatever I want!

I was escorted to my new ward, wobbling from side to side as I walked; dizziness overwhelmed me and fear of collapsing lingered in my mind.
As I entered the new ward, I spotted someone who I knew would bother me for the days I would be here.


/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I was taken to the bed next door to Tess’ and she smiled as I got into my bed. The nurse who had escorted me smiled over at Tess then marched out of the room.
“Congratulations, Mrs Winters.” Tess said over to me, smiling.
“How on Earth do you know that?” I asked sharply.
“Michael told me!” Tess snapped back, “Where is he anyway? Shouldn’t the happy couple be together?”
“The heart transplant was today.” I whispered.
“Oh my God, so he’s dead?” Tess said with her eyes wide.
“I’m sure when someone has their heart taken away from them they obviously awake and everything is fine again!” I exclaimed.
“Sorry, I was only asking.” Tess muttered.
A girl strolled through the archway entrance (no doors) and into the ward. She had brownish yet blackish hair and brown eyes, she was thin and she wore a bright, vibrant yellow shirt with blue trousers. It was Jasmine.
“Hey ill people. How are you all? I’m Jasmine if you don’t know! Oh, hi person I don’t know, what’s your name?” Jasmine smiled happily, looking bewildered over at Tess.
“I’m Tess and you must be Jasmine.” Tess said as Jasmine sat at the foot of my bed.
“Well, obviously, I just told you my name!” Jasmine exclaimed, rolling her eyes.
“So, Kathy, how were your last three days with Michael?” Tess asked.
“Really dull and boring, he didn’t even get my name right and do you know why? Because he said Chelsea’s name at the wedding but he gave me his heart so … I suppose I care.” I said angrily.
A boy ran in and he was also familiar and a close friend. Drake nearly stumbled over when he realised who was inside the ward.
“Hi … I didn’t know you were here! I was just exploring.” Drake chuckled. He smiled happily at me and smirked at Jasmine but when he spotted Tess he frowned immediately, “Oh, great. The cow is here.”
“Leave me alone. I helped you through your eating problems!” Tess snapped back at him.
“I haven’t eaten anything today!” Drake uttered a sigh, “What an excellent job trying to help me to eat!” Drake said sarcastically.
“Sit down.” I said to Drake while Jasmine ran her fingers through her long hair.
“Where shall I sit? There are no more seats.” Drake looked around the small ward with only Kathy and Tess occupying it.
“Sit at the end of Tess’ bed.” Jasmine said.
“Yeah, of course I’ll go anywhere near her!” Drake exclaimed sarcastically.
“Drake, you’re an idiot.” Tess chuckled.
“I think you better shut up before you get hungry!” Drake snapped. I glared angrily at him.
“Don’t make fun out of her weight!” I snapped.
“Drake, I’d be careful not to talk much or else you might lose energy and starve to death! You’re a stick insect!” Tess snapped at Drake with venom in her words.
“Hey! Don’t make fun out of Drake’s eating disorder! He’s anorexic!” I snapped at Tess.
“Stating the obvious, of course he’s anorexic! Drake, can you tell me who thought that there was too much fat in a crumb?” Tess mocked Drake cruelly.
“I’m not sure.” Drake grumbled, Drake looked over at Jasmine and smiled, “Hi, I don’t think we’ve met, I’m Drake and is your name ‘beautiful’ or ‘lovely’ by any chance?”
“Oh, my name is Jasmine Jacqueline and I don’t like flirting.” Jasmine said, looking away.

That night, it was impossible to close my eyes. The darkness helped but all I heard was the boisterous snoring from the irritating Tess.
Jasmine and Drake had been ordered to leave by the nurse yet they did put up an argument. Tess and I had to go to sleep at seven p.m., which was ridiculous!
The dream that lingered through my mind that night was exactly the same as the nightmare that I had dreamed a few months ago, yet this time it continued.

My head smacked forward and hit the wheel, causing my whole world to go blank. My vision failed; the joints in my body failed on me. My arms and legs became just a memory as they flopped out of control; my head pulsed with pain; I was … dying. I felt nothing more, I had no emotions or pain and I had no memory. I was … de-

I awaited my whole body to shut down but it didn’t. I felt as if nothing had happened: no car crash, no near death experience … I felt no pain.
I opened the half crushed door with no window and stepped outside. I threw the door back against the car and it lost connection with the car and fell off, crashing down onto the pavement.
I breathed in the fresh air and stared around at the dying flames that had caused other cars to lose their sprayed colour and become silver or black. I looked behind my car and saw another car crashed firmly into the back, destroying the back of the car. Behind that car was another with no passengers inside (they had somehow landed onto the road) and behind that car was another with injured but moving passengers.
The familiar boy who had shot at my car strolled over to me, smiling.
“Hello, Bradley.” I said.
“Good evening, Amethyst.” Bradley still smiled, “Shall we go somewhere more private because I think the injured ones are waking up.”
Bradley escorted me towards an alleyway further down the street. I believe this place was called ‘Cold Corner’ I’m not sure why, though.
We leapt over a sign marked: ‘DANGEROUS AREA – do not enter.’ And ran further down the alleyway as three police cars shot by.
“I think this is where people usually deal, I hate this place.” Bradley said.
“So, I think I owe you two thousand pounds, don’t I? Thanks for the whole accident, it worked brilliantly.” I said, smiling back at Bradley but still shaking from the shock.
“It was risky but worked somehow.” Bradley muttered as I dug into my pocket and brought out two thousand pounds in cash notes, handing them over to him as he counted through them quickly. He nodded slowly and continued to smile at me.
We kissed and continued to smile. We stopped and Bradley walked over to the fence and pointed to a hole where a wooden board used to be.
“Jasmine and Gibraleon, get out here now!” Bradley shouted sharply yet quietly in case he was heard.
A girl and a boy stepped through the large hole. Jasmine smiled widely when she spotted me and ran over to me and gave me a quick hug.
“Hey, Amethyst, how have you been?” Jasmine whispered.
“Alright, I suppose, I’m only in pain, that’s all.” I whispered.
“Oh, yeah, sorry Amethyst I forgot all about these.” Bradley handed me a tablet, “It is supposed to ‘restore all body senses and help the body fight against wounds and pains at a faster pace.’” He said as he read off the orange tube clasped in his hands.
Jasmine held hands with Gibraleon who still didn’t say a word.
“We watched the whole thing, it was horrible.” Jasmine whispered, “Don’t you realise that you’ve killed your parents?”
“I may sound like a horrible person but if you were me when I was abused you’d understand. They’re out there now in the third car behind mine. It was all planned to fake death to make Kathy suicidal because of what she did to me and to make my parents realise that they shouldn’t ruin their children’s lives.” I grumbled.
Jasmine’s mouth in the shape of a dramatic, comical: ‘O’.
“Shh! Keep your voice down!” Bradley whispered harshly.
“Okay, okay, I’m sorry.” I whispered.
“I arranged it all, so blame me for her parent’s death.” Bradley whispered.
“Why would you arrange something like that?” Jasmine whispered.
“The money and to make Amethyst happier, it all went to plan.” Bradley said, forgetting to whisper and causing everyone to sharply say: ‘Shh!’
“Step aside!” a male voice grumbled.
We all immediately looked over to the direction the voice came from: a policeman.
Jasmine and Gibraleon ran for the hole in the fence and managed to get through quite quickly as the police stepped over the sign and began to sprint after us all.
My legs were still in pain and felt as if they couldn’t move anymore. I began to sprint as fast as possible down the dark alleyway dotted with huge puddles that instantly splashed into my face every time I sprinted through them.
The alleyway never ended and the thick black fog that lingered everywhere slowed my progress down.
A hand grabbed the black cloak I was wearing and yanked me back through the fog. I fell back into a blue uniform and began to panic.
I kicked frantically backwards against his legs and the policeman fell backwards and was consumed by the thick fog.
I sprinted as fast as I could forward and shouted the names of the people that had abandoned me. Bradley had somehow run around the policeman unnoticed and Jasmine and Gibraleon were somewhere in the forest.
I pressed myself against the fence and hoped that because of the thick fog that I wouldn’t be spotted.
My heart hammered against my ribs as the gentle footsteps splashed through the puddles. The policeman ran straight passed me and progressed further down the alleyway.
I ran back the way I came and dived for the gap where the wooden fence board had been broken off years ago.
I fell into thick grass and was surrounded by trees. I saw a large tree stump and sprinted after it. I reached it and threw myself onto it, panting and breathing heavily.
“Jasmine, where are you?” I shouted sharply.
“Gibraleon, are you there?”
“Jasmine, answer me!”
I stopped shouting because my throat began to sting. I was alone on this tree stump in this creepy forest.
“Diamond person?” A male voice shouted.
“Her name is Amethyst!” A female voice exclaimed.
“Hello?” I asked the darkness.
“We’re over here!” Jasmine exclaimed.
I ran through the darkness, my eyes slightly adjusting. A fallen oak tree blocked my way as I climbed over the huge tree trunk. On the other side was Jasmine and Gibraleon; they leant against another oak tree yet this one had not fallen. They smiled over at me as they sat on the dry earth, close together and still linked: they were holding hands.
“Is the policeman still coming?” Gibraleon asked quickly.
“No, he ran straight passed me.” I spoke into the darkness, I could only see them from the gentle glow of the menacing moon and the luminous light was fading.
A huge, red bleeding slice was across my left arm, revealed from the moonlight. I gently ran my finger across the deep cut yet there was no pain as I stroked it because of the tablet.
“Jasmine, may I ask you something?” I asked as I continued to stroke the wound.
“Yeah, I suppose.” Jasmine said yet her voice was muffled so I guessed that she was kissing Gibraleon.
A bright light shot through the darkness and made the area light up. I looked down to see Gibraleon mobile phone flipped open so that a small, sharp light came from its screen.
I sat down beside, I had assumed correctly: they were kissing and were no longer conscious about the events around them, their eyes closed so the darkness would make no difference anyway.
“I know that today’s event will make Kathy devastated but I want more than that. I want her to feel nothing, to feel like she shouldn’t be alive. I want her to be … dead.” I growled as I breathed heavily and anger building up inside of me.
Jasmine and Gibraleon stopped kissing. Jasmine went as white as the menacing moon above her, the light from the moon blocked by many branches swerving in all directions.
Gibraleon dropped his phone and they both instantly stared at me blankly.
“What did she ever do to you?” Jasmine exclaimed.
“I can’t say. I’ll be arrested if I say; she’ll be arrested if I say.” I spoke vastly and panicky.
“What were you going to ask me?” Jasmine said, nearly gasping.
“I want you to kill Kathy.” I whispered.

My heart (Michael’s) jumped to my throat. I couldn’t breathe. I was still sleeping and yet I couldn’t breathe or awake. I felt hollow.
Why was I seeing what happened to Amethyst? Why did she want to kill me? Unless … it was because of the incident two years ago which no one involved in the incident speaks of.
I was trying all I could to wake back up. I was shaking and I was still in deep sleep. I was … still … in … deep … sleep …

Jasmine was in a police interview room; she stared up at the pacing policeman.
“Why did you kill the innocent girl?” The policeman asked sharply.
“It was Amethyst’s dying wish.” Jasmine whispered.
“Why would you kill your own half-sister?” The policeman slammed him palms against the desk that Jasmine was sat at.
“If you knew what she had done to Amethyst, you’d understand.”
“What happened with her sister?”
“I can’t say, I promised.” Jasmine whispered, looking down.
“Tell me!”
“I can’t!” Jasmine exclaimed.
“Tell me or you’ll be behind bars before you can say ‘oops’!”
“Fine … I’ll tell you,” Jasmine wept into her hands, “It was two years ago …”

My alarm clock rang out through the room, slicing the silence and my nightmare.
My eyes snapped open and the second I regained consciousness, I picked up the alarm clock on my bedside cabinet and threw it against the marble hospital ward floor. It shattered into pieces.
The alarm didn’t awake Tess but the shattering woke her immediately. She leaned forward and stared around the room, confounded.
“What time is it?” Tess asked croakily.
“5:00 a.m.” I told her.
Tess gasped. “Oh my God, why have you woken me up so early?”
“I didn’t want to wake up this early! I had a nightmare, a rather disturbing nightmare and I wanted it to continue but that stupid alarm ruined it!” I exclaimed angrily.
“Calm down.” Tess yawned.
The nurse walked in, her long blonde hair flying behind her. “I’m just taking a note of your illnesses for future record.” The nurse said, a clipboard clasped in her hands and a pen held by the metal clippings at the top of the board.
“Tess Calamber, what is your mental illness?” The nurse spoke softly.
“I have clinical depression.” Tess said.
“I see,” The nurse said.
“Yeah, I know.” Tess replied in frustration.
“Kathy Kimberley, how are you? I realise you have had a transplant?” The nurse spoke sweetly yet quickly.
“Yep, a heart transplant yesterday.” I said as I sat up in my bed.
The nurse smiled and walked away, the tapping of her footsteps echoed through the corridor.
“Tess.” I whispered sharply, looking over to her.
“What?” Tess asked angrily.
“I dreamt last night that I was dead and that Jasmine killed me. It was horrible and it was all because Amethyst had faked death to make me suicidal based on what happened two years ago and she wanted me dead!” I exclaimed quickly.
“Whoa, slow down, Kathy!” Tess snapped, “You need to relax.”
“There’s one main problem … I can look into the past, view incidents of the present and predict the future.” I said slowly. I felt physically sick and had learnt more than I had wanted to know from my nightmare segments: Jasmine was my half-sister; Amethyst wanted me to be dead and the incident two years ago was clear in my mind.
Where was Freedom in my nightmare? If Gibraleon was present in the event then where was Freedom? The nightmare confounded me and I breathed heavily.
My phone erupted with noise. It was my brother, Theo Kimberley, asking whether it would be okay to live with me in my hotel room if he paid for himself. I replied quite quickly, people say I can type like lightning, to his message and then pocketed my mobile phone. Theo is twenty-three like my dead sister because they were twins, not identical twins but they were born on the same day.
“I’m never going to sleep again.” I moaned.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

My mother stormed into my bedroom as I was on the computer. She looked angry … again. She’s always moody.
“Look at you room! It’s a mess again! How many times do I have to tell you?” My mother snapped.
I simply nodded.
“Are you even listening to me?” My mother exclaimed.
“It was my crazy cow sister’s fault.” I muttered angrily.
“Don’t go blaming it on your sister! You know it is your fault and you can’t deny it!” Mother snapped with venom in her pernicious words.
“And keep the door shut! Your two-year-old brother could escape and get ran over, do you really want that?” Mother exclaimed.
“Don’t care.” The words slipped out and my heart felt hollow.
“You don’t care? You don’t care? You are a horrible person!” Mother was in hysterics.
“You’re a terrible parent!” I snapped back at her.
“How dare you! You can’t say that to me!” Mother growled.
A coughing and spluttering came from the next room. Mother ran out of the room and into the living room (my room was downstairs) and moaned.
“You’re younger brother is choking again! You distracted me with your arguing that I couldn’t keep an eye on him!” Mother snapped.
“Blame everything on me! Every since Father walked out on us all you’ve done is been mean to me! It’s not fair on me at all!” I snapped back at her.
My mother came back in and shoved my brother into my arms. “You look after him while I go relax!” Mother exclaimed.
“Fine, leave your problems to me!” I snapped through the door as I sat staring at my computer and looking down at my brother.
I was on the Internet looking for pictures of dragons to send to Jasmine and I looked down at my premature brother in sympathy. His sweet, blue eyes looked up at me in confusion.
He weighed as much as a thin book, his thin premature face hardly moved. He had asthma so he had trouble breathing which made me worried. I tickled his chin and he smiled.
My two-year-old brother stormed through the room, smiling.
“Drake, can you come play with me in the garden?” My two-year-old brother called Jack said.
“No I can’t at the moment; I’m keeping an eye on baby Charlie, piggy.” I said, chuckling. I always call him ‘piggy’ and he always seems to answer to it.
“My name’s not piggy, it’s Jack!” Jack exclaimed.
“Your name is piggy!” I exclaimed. Jack was quite chubby so it was the perfect name for him.
“Leave me alone, Drake.” Jack moaned.
“I can’t deal with both brothers, Jack go in the garden.” I ordered my brother and he just stood there. He was wearing a small red shirt that said: ‘I’m hungry’ and small green trousers.
“Fine then, keep an eye on your brother. I’m going outside.” I moaned, placing Charlie on my bed and running out of my room and into the living room, running towards the front door.
“Wait for me, Drake!” Jack ran after me as I sprinted out the open front door. I was going to go to the hospital to visit Kathy; I needed to tell her something really important. It was about what had happened two years ago.
I ran out onto the drive and sprinted down the road. Cars sped passed regularly now and then and it was quite irritating.
As I reached the other side of the pavement, a car sped around the corner and headed down the street.
Mother ran out of the front door, her face was pale and she looked frightened.
“Jack! Jack! Where are you Jack?” She screamed, near to tears.
Then I spotted something much worse. My brother was running across the road towards me.
“Drake, wait for me! Wait for me!”
My mouth dropped open and I shook uncontrollably. I ran across the road as fast as I could and grabbed Jack in my arms, lifting him up and holding him in my arms tightly. The car was a second away from hitting him but I put my hand out in front of me to stop the car. It skidded to a halt and beeped angrily. Jack was so close … so close to death.
“You’ll have to be more careful when crossing the road!” I snapped at Jack and tickled his stomach to make him happier than he already was.
The car continued to speed down the road and as I carried Jack to the other side of the pavement, the car was a few inches away from hitting us both.
That was one of the darkest days of my life.
Then … I remembered something else: Charlie!
I sprinted up the drive and through the door, closing it behind me. My mother glared at me like I was a piece of dirt. The living room was a blur and I placed Jack down on the sofa before running in through the open door that joined my bedroom to the living room.
Charlie was just about to roll off my bed and hit the floor before I quickly caught him in mid air.
My mother never let today’s events go; she bothered me everyday of my life about how I could have killed both of my brothers because of my carelessness. I need to leave this house and find a new home … quickly!
If I had given Charlie to my mother and played with Jack in the garden then none of the bad events of today would’ve occurred.
The next day, Charlie went to hospital from an asthma attack. He nearly died. The results are still unsure …

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

Hospital rules: turn your mobile phone off. Why not disobey these rules? My mobile phone may come in handy, like it did today …
My mobile phone erupted with constant high-pitched noise, the vibration causing me to jump and make Kathy jump, too.
“Who is it?” Kathy asked.
“The screen says … ‘mum.’” I looked over at Kathy, confused. My heart pounded against my chest painfully.
I clicked the ‘answer’ button and carefully placed the phone against my ear.
”Hello, mum is that you?” I croaked.
“Yes, it is.” She sounded angry.
“What’s wrong and why are you calling me?” I asked shakily.
“I’m ringing because I saw the advertisement for our house in the newspaper.” Mother grumbled and I could feel the anger build up inside of her, “We want the money from our house, and the money is not yours!”
“I’m sorry; I’ve spent it on a new home.” I said.
“What did you just say?”
“I’VE SPENT IT ON A NEW HOME. Are you stupid enough not to understand me? That’s another thing to add to the list of reasons why I hate you both! Why ask?” I asked.
“We need that money. We have had a baby daughter and need that money to care for her! You have ruined our family to make yourself happy! You can talk to her, if you want, she is five-years-old now.” Mother snapped.
“Fine, let me talk to her.” I put the phone on loudspeaker so that Kathy could hear.
“Hello, are you Tess?” A little girl’s voice appeared down the phone, her voice was squeaky and sweet, “why have you spent all our money, why? I won’t be able to go to school now … you have made me unhappy. We are poor now and need some money. Please save up for us, please. I’m begging you, please! Please, save up for us. Mum and Dad don’t have jobs. It is too hot here and we need a home. You stole our money. I hate you!” The little girl hung up on me. I didn’t even know who my sister’s name was.
“She sounds angry.” Kathy said with her eyes wide as she chuckled slightly.
“You don’t know what it feels like!” I muttered.
“I don’t, do I? Tell me, who was abused as a child?” Kathy asked angrily.
“I know. You faced your angry mother everyday of your childhood and some of your teenage years.” I whispered.
“Exactly, that’s my point.” Kathy replied. I thought she hadn’t heard me.
“I’ve ruined my family,” I said, “I didn’t even know I had a sister.”
“You learn something new everyday, it’s a fact.” Kathy said, getting out of bed and closing the orange curtains around her so that she could get changed. She looked at me confounded before hiding herself behind the curtains that reached the marble floor.
“I’m going to save up for them and send them the money, even if it’s the last thing I do.” I whispered.
“Tess, don’t you remember what they put you through? You can’t save up for them or you’re just falling into their trap! Listen to me, cut them out of your life as they did to you.”
I looked over to the safe beside me and typed in the combination on the black, metal buttons provided.
‘DV389C223JKC’ was the combination. I dug my hand into the safe and pulled out my money and counted it. The total amount came up to thirty pounds in pound coins. I’ve got a long way to go. Kathy sighed and pushed her cushion against her face and screamed.
Secondly, I pulled out my tablets. I tipped the opening onto my hand and three popped out (I was only supposed to have two) and threw them down my throat. I felt them trickle down my throat and the second they hit my stomach acid, I felt a lurching feeling in my stomach. I clutched my huge stomach in agony. The pain was unreal, it was a throbbing and sickening pain but still, nothing occurred that I wanted to occur.
Thirdly, placing the money and tablets back inside the safe, I dug around in the blue padding full of all my special objects and pulled out my notepad and a pen. I scribbled down some notes before throwing it back in.
Fourthly, I pulled out Kathy’s red case. I examined it as the sunlight shot through the large window behind me, three floors high, and reflected off the amethyst diamonds fixed around the opening. I opened it and stared inside.
I suddenly felt cold and felt as if something was creeping down my spine. What was wrong with this case? Something dark lingers upon it, I could feel it. I dug my finger into the red padding and searched around for the dark object. I was shocked when I realised something:
The object inside that had caused shock and bewilderment to nearly everyone who had discovered it was gone.


- Freedom Heartsouth –

Word on the street is that our victim, Michael Winters, gave his life for his girlfriend. We all simply laugh at those rumours. I was there but I took not notice, I just simply smirked.
I was sitting on the edge of the cliff miles away from our hometown. I stared down at the murky water below: the wonders of the sea.
I would be waiting here for another two hours for Gibraleon; I had decided to come early to see if anyone passes by so that I can sell the customers our ‘merchandise.’
I was sitting on the gravely cliff and heard the crunching of stones. I turned swiftly around, standing upright. My enemies were here.
A tall, older teenage stood at the front of the small group of five people. I gave them an angry glare. They all had a penknife clasped in their hand.
“Haven’t you ever heard of: ‘respect your life, not a knife.’” I said, smirking.
“No, and we don’t care. Yuh are going to respect us and drop the knife in yuh hand. Yuh better be careful wit’ yourself.” The one at the front said. He was black and had a cap on his baldhead; he was wearing it the wrong way. He wore a red jacket and a shirt that had ‘I won’t hurt you, I’ll kill you’ in red writing on his shirt and blue jeans that had been tore near his knees.
Then I spotted someone else behind him: Gibraleon was behind him and as I looked closer, squinting, I saw Bradley there too. They had betrayed ‘South Corner’.
“Bradley and Gibraleon are in my gang: ‘South Corner’. Why are they with you?” I asked with the smirk still remaining on my face.
“Maybe they found a better gang to be in, yuh better watch out ‘cause ‘north shot’ are a more violent gang. Me name is Cry.”
The other two people behind him, who were unknown to me because their coats covered their bodies and their hoods, covered their faces.
“Cry must be your street name, like mine is Freedom.” I said with a smirk still spread across my face.
“Well, yeah.” Cry said, “We have some business to settle with yuh. Yuh was the one who stalked my mate, Michael, that night two years ago. Yuh have to pay for that. Yuh tried to kill him.”
“Well, yeah. That’s the rules of the street, kill anyone who is in ‘north shot’ and you have to kill anyone who is in ‘South Corner.’” I muttered.
“Like yuh.” Cry said.
“Yeah, like … me.” I hesitated, “Is that what you’re here for, to kill me?”
“Yuh hit the nail right on de head. Just like what we’re gonna do to yuh.”
“Now, now, can’t we reason this?” I asked shakily, my hands waving in front of me as a sign for them to back away as Cry stepped closer.
“Yuh are pathetic!” Cry exclaimed, stepping closer. The penknife was still clasped in his hand.
He lifted the penknife out in front of him. I was no longer smirking. He was.
I took a step back and stone fell from beneath my feet and fell off the cliff. I stared nervously down at them as they fell towards the water. I was very high above the water. If I fell, I’d drown and die. I should have had those swimming lessons last year instead of ‘how to use a gun’ lessons.
“Take another step back and yuh be in the sea.” Cry said. The others didn’t move: Gibraleon and Bradley looked guilty and simply frowned. Gibraleon closed his eyes. The other cloaked figures held up their penknives to me but did not step forward: they were on guard in case I tried to run away.
I held up my penknife and pointed it at Cry but he simply chuckled. Not the reaction I was hoping for. “What are yuh gonna do wit’ that? Yuh are pathetic!” Cry exclaimed, stepping forward one more step.
The ground crumbled beneath my feet, the stones began to tumble off the edge of the cliff and after one minute, I heard a few gentle splashes. In a few seconds there would be a huge splash: the splash would be me.
I kicked out and hit Cry in the shin; he backed away one step then ran at me, full of rage.
My eyes went wide with fear and my heart hammered against my chest.
He was an inch away from me before he stabbed me in the stomach with his penknife and I swiped at his face with mine, he had a bleeding slice across his right eye and all the way down to his mouth in a curve. It was bleeding terribly.
I fell back in pain, clutching my stomach. I had dropped the penknife and it had fallen behind me, now falling towards the deep ocean below.
It was a nice sunny day but it seemed, strangely, the second I was stabbed that the sky became slightly darker.
I stumbled backwards and fell with my arms stretched out at my sides. I was falling … falling … falling. I felt the air swarm around me so gravity took its course.
I looked up to see Cry leaning over the edge, smirking horribly: just like I used to do.
I closed my eyes. The water would soon be around me. I could just feel it splashing all over me and filling my lungs.
I closed my stinging eyes and then, without a warning, the water took control and buried me. Weeds and fishes surrounded me. I don’t know where I was but I knew that I’d die here.
Goodbye, freedom.
Goodbye, Freedom.

- Jasmine Jacqueline –

I’ve got to kill Kathy, but how? It was Amethyst’s dying wish at the car crash incident. I don’t want to be a murderer but I have to. What happened two years ago with Amethyst and Kathy sends a chill up my spine every time it scatters through my thoughts.
I was in my bedroom; it was a simple bedroom with nothing exciting in it really.
I looked out of my bedroom window and saw a teenager walking by. Two people followed him with black hoods over their faces. I stared at the boy at the front as he was examining his hands: they were blood-soaked.
I gasped and ran over to my bed in shock. I lay there and thought of a plan to humiliate Kathy to lure her here to do what Amethyst had ordered me to do in her will.
I would tell everyone I know about what had happened two years ago with Amethyst and Kathy then she’d have a reason to hate me and come here to get the biggest shock of her life.
I jumped over to the other side of my bed and I grabbed for my mobile phone on my bedside table. I threw the phone up into the air a short distance and caught it quickly. I dialled Tiffany Calling’s number and awaited a reply.
“Hello, Tiffy here.” Tiffany said, strangely sympathetically, down the phone.
“Hey Tiff, I have a plan and I need your help.” I asked excitedly.
“Oh, do I have to? I’ve just helped Drake with his girlfriend problems.” Tiffany moaned.
“Because you know more people than anyone in the world, I need you to spread a rumour.”
“Ooh, sounds good. That’s what I like: rumours. So what do you want me to tell my peeps?”
“I want you to tell everyone you know that Kathy is a drug dealer and has Michael’s heart and what she did two years ago in one rumour. You can do that, I bet.” I said.
“Of course I can, I can craft any rumour … hmm, but I’m not good at English … Do you really want people to know about what happened two years ago? That’s the darkest moment of her life and I think she’d hate you if you said anything like that.” Tiffany replied with sympathy in her words.
“Exactly, that’s perfect!” I exclaimed happily.
“Alright then, I’ll get right on it. The whole of Stafford will know by the time I’m finished, which will be in a day, I assure you!” Tiffany exclaimed happily back at me.
“Isn’t that a little biased?” I asked.
“For me, it isn’t!” Tiffany exclaimed happily. She was ecstatic that she had a new rumour to spread.
This would be the beginning of something terrible and risky …

The next day at college, all people were talking (or whispering) about what Kathy had done in the past. They all had faces of either bewilderment which meant ‘I don’t believe it, it’s confusing’ or shock which meant ‘how could she do a horrible thing like that?’ which made me slowly rub my hands together mischievously: the plan was working.
Kathy came into college late that day, showing people her scars from the heart transplant and smiling at their reactions, because she was let out of hospital today, as well as Tess.
She seemed angry. I stayed out of her way and stayed in the college library, out of harms way (when I say ‘harms way’ I obviously mean Kathy’s way).
I was sitting on one of the soft blue chairs reading my favourite book for the fourth time now. A teenage girl walked over to me, an anxious look on her face. She had a book with a blue cover and a red jacket.
“Did you hear about Kathy? It’s horrible! Well, first she –“the girl started.
“Wait, yes I have heard about her. It made me feel ill the first time I heard it.” I interjected, lying.
“I know!” the girl’s mouth was in the shape of a dramatic: ‘O’, “That’s how I felt the first time I heard it! Although, I did feel suicidal after hearing it, but that’s just me.”
My eyes went wide. “A little dramatic, don’t you think?”
“No, it was exactly how I felt.” The girl said.
“What’s your name, girl?” I asked as she sat down on the blue chair opposite me. The library was empty except her and me; the books overlooked us from above on the many shelves stacked against the walls around the small, rectangular library. The librarian sat at the desk at the front and we sat at the back of the room, buried in the shadows of the bookshelves and the gentle rays of the sun bursting through the large transparent windows.
“My name is Angela, what’s yours?” Angela asked.
“Jasmine and I’m the reason that Kathy’s life has been spread around school.” I chuckled.
“What did you just say? I can’t believe someone would be so heartless that they’d tell someone’s life to everyone like that!” Angela moaned.
“It’s important.” I said, as Angela looked really angry.
“That’s horrid!” Angela got up out of the seat and threw the book she was holding at me. I caught it quickly, my eyes blinking continuously, and clasped it in my hands. I examined the title of the book and my mouth fell open: ‘How to ruin someone’s life.’
A sticky note was fixed upon the book and it read: ‘Thought this might help, from Angela.’
I looked over to Angela and she winked at me and mouthed the words ‘She’s watching’ before running out of the library doors. This made no sense. How does she know that I have to murder Kathy?
I opened the book and found that the first page consisted of black lines shooting in all directions. Some were drawn in pencil and some were printed. A purple eraser was stuck down onto the first page with tape. I picked it up and began to rub away at the pencil lines. All that was left was writing in print.
Angela had said that what I was doing was horrid as an act; she needed to give me that note in an unsuspicious way. She passed the book to me in the way she did so that a particular person didn’t get suspicious. There must be something tucked inside this book that is not supposed to be read by that particular person.
Someone is watching … but whom?

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I was laughing because of the fact that Tess had made quite a funny joke. I was sitting on the grass of the college sports field and I gave everyone who passed by a suspicious glare.
People came by on their own or were in twos, some were in small groups, and as they passed me their gentle, happy smiles faded into worried expressions and would try to avoid me. Some would be a metre away from me, some two metres! I didn’t understand why this was happening … until the whispers began.
I listened intently as they passed, my legs crossed on the grass and gently sipping away at my can of coke. Tess listened carefully too, she didn’t look as interested in their conversations as me but she still assisted me in trying to work out what all the commotion was for.
More people went by and their sharp, gentle whispers hissed through the silence …
“Oh my god, there she is! Careful, she might murder us!”
“I dare you to go up to her and ask her if you can buy some drugs!”
“Murderer Kimberley is here! Run!”
Then the worst happened, mothers and their young Year One children passed by me …
“Mummy, I’m scared!” The child would say loud enough for me to hear.
“Don’t worry, darling, she won’t hurt you if you’re with me!” The mother would hug their child and glare angrily at me.
“Can I stay off school, then? In case she murders me and sells me that horrible stuff?” The child would squeak, their voices high-pitched.
“Of course you can, sweetheart.” The mother would reply and they’d walk the opposite direction.
Someone has betrayed me; someone has spread a rumour about my past life, but whom?

I kept a close eye on my friends and enemies that day; some people I didn’t even know well were talking about me.
One tiny whisper slipped out at lunchtime when everyone’s stare was on me, they weren’t even eating. Some would be half way through a burger or sandwich and would stare worriedly at me. Even the teachers were watching me through lunchtime and all the way through their lessons!
The tiny whisper echoed in my mind: ‘Rumour has it that Jasmine started it all and everyone is thanking her because now they can watch the murderer carefully and be safe!’
The second I heard that whisper I got up out of my seat and carefully placed my lunch tray on the table causing it to slam down dramatically and make a loud ‘BANG’ sound. Everyone jumped out their skin at the sound of the bang, some even said: ‘everyone duck, she’s shot at us!” and everyone obediently ducked on queue.
I angrily stormed out of the lunch hall doors and out onto the sports field.
A question ran through my mind: ‘if I was Jasmine, where would I be?’ and then a thought clicked in my mind. The library!
I stormed through the corridors, everyone pressed against the corridor walls and their eyes remained as wide as they were in the lunch hall. It was like walking down the red carpet with everyone at the side of you, but they weren’t cheering, they were looking at me disgusted.
As I stepped through the library doors, someone exclaimed: ‘murder in the library!’
I spotted Jasmine’s long, silvery black hair immediately and glared at her angrily before marching towards her. She had her head buried in a book. It was called ‘How to ruin someone’s life.’ I think she has already done that!
One I reached her, my shadow lingered over her. She ignored me; she didn’t even look up from her book, unless she was so indulged in the book that she didn’t recognise her surroundings.
I cleared my throat and when she didn’t even look up for that, I slammed the book out of her hands and it hit the floor instantly.
Jasmine’s eyes trailed up to me, she was shivering. “Please, don’t hurt me, it wasn’t my fault! It wasn’t!”
“You …” anger was filling up inside of me like water to a glass, “… You have ruined my life! Everyone in the school thinks I’m a mass murderer and despise me and it’s your entire fault! I’m having suicidal thoughts again and it’s all because of what you did! Why would you do such a thing! I want to go with my sister –“I stopped in my tracks when I had a weird feeling. I felt as if I was being watched.
“Do you feel as if you’re being watched?” I looked around. The library was empty. The librarian was on her lunch break and we were the only ones to occupy the dark, shadow filled library. It reminded me of my home at Dark Oak Farm: the library room where I had to sleep on the windowsill.
Jasmine nodded slowly, her eyes wide. “I’ve felt that all day.”
“What is this anyway? This book …” I said stressfully, scooping the book into my hands. I flicked through it and a blur of black ink words flew by in my vision and then on one page the words were blocked by a yellowish piece of thick paper. It fell out onto the floor: it was a sealed envelope.
Jasmine made a grab for it and quickly swiped it from the floor. I grabbed for it but she ducked down and ran towards the library doors. I didn’t chase after her; I stared around the library, squinting at the dark shadows.
I heard a feint whisper, too high-pitched to make out what the words were. It sent a shiver down my spine. I flicked through the book that was still in my hands and looked for anything suspicious.
I came upon a page that was blotched with red ink (I hoped it was red ink) and underneath the splotches was the words ‘look up’ written in the ‘red ink.’
I began to shake and shiver before I slowly tilted my head upwards. I saw something that caused my shivering and shaking to become uncontrollable.
The ceiling was set out in medium sized square tiles. The one I stared up at was unique to the others. I felt cold inside. Everyone hated me and now my life was about to get much worse.
I threw the book into the bag on my back and stormed out of the chilly library.
Everyone’s glare was on me as I ran down the corridor and through the door marked: ‘Science.’
Through the whole lesson, the teacher only kept his glare on me and asked me all the questions that came to mind, related to the subject he was teaching.
“Miss Kimberley, what part of the animal cell controls it?” Mr Pure asked me. He drew a circle on the board with a large black dot in the middle and tapping it with his board pen. His glare was not a peaceful one because he hated me. He was awaiting a reason to expel me and then all the horrible tension that all the students had would disappear.
“Er … the nucleus?” I guessed.
“Correct. Now this is just simple science. Here at the college we learn more complex science. Kathy, I’ll think you’ll know this. I’m going to ask you a question about blood which you should obviously know about because it is on your hands every night.” Mr Pure grumbled. Everyone in the room remained their stare on me.
I picked up my books and stationary without saying a word and threw them into the blue backpack still on my back. I lifted myself up and everyone moved his or her chair backwards (I was on the front row). I walked across the classroom and towards the wooden door. I pulled it towards me and slammed it back and it nearly came out of its hinge. My face was full of rage.


/ g /
- Theo Kimberley –

I walked through the dark, shadow filled streets. I trudged through the deep puddles and kicked through the water. The bottom of my trousers was damp from the shallow river I was walking through ten minutes ago.
I was on my way to the hotel room Kathy had lived in for the passed three weeks and was walking down ‘Cold Corner’, which it was known as to every teenager in this horrid little place.
The stench of sewage lingered down here and the murky puddles had essence of oil swimming around inside and used cigarettes swimming in circles, chasing the steel beer cans.
I saw the huge hotel overlooking the streets below. Every light in the building was on and a small, cosy balcony occupied every small square window.
I sprinted across the street and the aroma of cooked chips filled the air and the dark outlines of people pressed against the graffiti covered walls surrounding the hotel were visible in the dark. The walls were topped with sharp, black spikes and smoke flew into the air and covered the darkness with a murky, grey coat.
A deep voice, a male voice, broke the silence of the night. The only sound was the spraying of the spray paint against the brick wall and the sizzling of the chips hissing in the chip shop next door to the hotel.
The teenage boy chuckled from the darkness but I couldn’t see him except a flicker of his face from the burning of the flame from his lighter that was igniting his cigarette.
“Hey guys, look at that freak! Hey, yuh! Yuh are a freak!” The deep voice snapped.
I gave him an angry glare and somehow … he saw me.
“He gave me the wrong look! You think you’re hard. Don’t you mate? You think you’re better than us? You freak!” The deep voice snapped again and before I knew it, my legs were carrying me away down the street as the group of laughing gang members chased me down the street.
“We’ll stab yuh down until yuh worthless!” The teenager snapped.
“I didn’t give you the wrong look! I didn’t, I promise you!” I snapped with my eyes closed.
They were too fast for me; one of them overtook me and pushed me down against the pavement.
“Give me your money, punk!” He snapped at me. I dug my hands into my pockets and threw all the money I had out onto the pavement. They quickly scooped the coins up.
They all surrounded me and kicked me in the stomach and punched me in the nose and it bled vigorously.
I stepped up as they all backed away to kick me at a greater speed. As one of them ran towards me I held up my fist and swung it back and took aim at one of the bullies as they ran towards me. My fist hit him on the mouth and I felt a liquid trickle onto my fist. I shook three teeth off my fist and wiped the blood on my sleeve.
Before I knew what was happening, another one of the bullies sprinted towards my legs to knock me over. I quickly and flawlessly took aim with my legs and kicked frantically at his ducked body. His head suddenly clicked back as I kicked it and droplets of blood flew into the air.
Another ran towards me and kicked me down but I instantly jumped back onto my feet. I clenched my fist and punched the tall, black teenager in the stomach but it didn’t hurt him because of his muscles. He chuckled and punched me on my cheekbone and my neck clicked to the side. My cheek tickled and felt rough from the punch.
He threw another punch but I held up my palm and blocked it and, using my other fist, I punched him in the nose. He stumbled back a few steps before advancing forward once more.
They were all in a circle: surrounding me, closing in. There was one small gap but it would close any minute. I need to take a risk!
I closed my eyes and ran towards the gap and when I felt no more tension I opened them again and saw the wall layered by graffiti of all different colours, patterns, signatures, names and lightning bolts.
There was a gap in the wall that led down to Doxey Marshes and I took the chance: I sprinted through the gap and down the hill where bushes and nettles reached out into the path, ready to grab passers by.
The river ran across the marshes and underneath the oval shaped entrance to the sewers that sat underneath the wall covered in graffiti.
I spotted another wall in the distance and ducked down. I sprinted through the thick plants that were causing my legs to sting. I reached the wall and pressed my palms against it and ran around it so that I was hidden.
I was panting heavily and when I noticed there was no way of getting any further because the river had flowed onto the path, I discovered the only way to escape was to walk across the top of the wall and get to the other side. Then I noticed the huge rocks piled on top of each other against the wall and began to climb onto them, yet they were too rough and cut into my skin and my stomach lurched when I spotted the used needles thrown onto the rocks. If one of them pricked me, I’d only have three years to live, anyway.
I jumped onto the next huge rock and looked up at the wall: It wasn’t far ahead so I lifted my hands up and grabbed onto the top, pulling myself up and kneeling on the top. I lifted myself up and began to balance across.
Then I spotted the teenagers again … they were walking towards me and their eyes flashed in the darkness. I began to walk faster across the wall and then I saw another flashing in the darkness but I was sure it wasn’t their eyes this time … it was a blade.
One of them threw their penknife at me and I began to walk faster than before but got struck by the blade and lost balance. The air out of my lungs had been stabbed out of me.
The last thing I heard was the chuckling of the older teenagers and the meowing of the white cat walking toward me across the wall before I fell backwards and into the marshes where fishes swam through my blood instead of the dirty water.
I was sinking further into the water but then floated back to surface, breathing heavily. I didn’t last long. My life was flying away from me …
Theo Kimberley, 23, was stabbed and drowned for giving a gang the ‘wrong look’ would be in the obituaries tomorrow.
Life was failing on me and the marsh was trickling into my wound. I was sinking and the pain was unimaginable.
Amethyst Kimberley died in water; I’m following in her footsteps.
I was losing too much blood and my whole world closed around me. My eyes closed …

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

“’Theo Kimberley, 23, was stabbed and drowned for giving a gang the ‘wrong look,’ yesterday night. He was found with a penknife through his heart in the depths of Doxey Marshes.
The knife was checked for fingerprints but the culprit had soaked the knife in a type of oil that caused fingerprints not to show on the blade or handle. Although, two initials: C.R was printed on the blade, if it means anything to anyone please contact 07890263723, thank you.
His body was found with slices all over his face, arms, legs, stomach, back and neck. He had bruises all over his face and carved into his arm were the words: ‘North Shot’ which was also discovered on the arm of the boy recognised as Myron Heartsouth (Freedom Heartsouth to his family and friends) who was discovered at the foot of the cliff in Cornwall. His body had been pierced through the rocks at the bottom and a penknife marked with the same initials had been found struck through his left Kidney.
Full story continued on page five.’ It’s a disgrace! I can’t believe Theo died like that, if I find the gang that murdered him and Freedom, I’ll murder them!” I snapped after I read the article in the newspaper while Tess leaned over my shoulder and attempted to read it too, despite her terrible eyesight.
“That’s disgusting!” Tess pulled a disgusted face and frowned down at the newspaper. We were sitting on the roof of Tess’ garage. After all, she did live in a mansion – literally! Her grandmother left it behind for her so she no longer had to live in the hospital. Lucky her!
Our legs dangled off the edge of the roof as we stared down at the passers by and I put the newspaper to one side. I reached for the backpack on my back and threw it over my back after unzipping it and took out the strange book.
“Does this mean anything to you?” I asked Tess as I handed her the book that she was staring at intently. She took it off me and flicked the pages to the first page. She began to read it.
“This makes no sense! The words aren’t even English; they’re just lines that look like letters when you flick through it.” She began to flick through the pages with her fingertips and gasped, “The only way to read it is to flick through the pages! It’s like one of those cartoons that move when you flick through the pages, except in this case it’s lines!”
“I know what it says! I sent Theo down there to have a look for me – that’s why he’s dead.” I snapped and swiped the book out of her hands and flicked through the pages. I began to understand the words. “‘If … you … want … your … red … case … back, … meet … me … in … Doxey … Marshes … at … midnight … on … the …fifteenth … of … July.’ This isn’t a published book, this is a notebook!”
“So that’s where the red case went.” Tess sighed and shook her head. I looked over at her angrily.
“Yeah, you stole it from me.” I grumbled.
“Then it was stolen from me!” Tess moaned.
“That makes no difference!” I snapped back at her.
“So, are we going to Doxey Marshes tomorrow?” Tess asked.
“I guess so. I need my red case back. Have you ever seen what was inside it?” I asked.
“Yeah, I did. It’s … horrible.” Tess said quietly.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

“Have you heard the news?” I told Jasmine.
“Huh?” Jasmine asked as we sat on her red bed, talking and reading magazines. I was reading ‘Trusted Teen’ and spotted an article that caught my attention.
“Look at this …” I stared down at the two-paged article. On one page was writing of how the teens died and on the other page were pictures of each teen smiling happily.


Teenagers … the trouble they get into these days! More than twenty teenagers die a year and a minimum of two die in a month!
It’s all about booze, smoking and depression when adolescence takes control, but what about the teenagers that have deceased throughout this year so far?

Freedom Heartsouth (18-years-old and was unemployed)
He was mainly seen smirking by his friends and family but he wasn’t smirking when he rocketed to the ocean when he was deliberately pushed off a cliff in Cornwall with a stab wound and a penknife through his heart. He will be sadly missed. Our reliable source is that he committed suicide and stabbed himself half way down the cliff. Here at ‘Trusted Teen’ we leave a message to all teenagers: keep clear of cliff edges and slang speaking gangs!

Michael Winters (17-years-old and was unemployed)
This was a traumatised death but it was linked to love and courage. Michael gave up his heart for his dying girlfriend in need of a transplant, which proves that love can go over the top! We believe (the truth) that he attempted to poison his girlfriend so that he could keep his heart! Selfishness!

Amethyst Kimberley (23-years-old and had a job in advertising)
She deceased in a plane crash on the way to Mexico. Journeys always come to a falling end! It was believed that she faked her death in a car crash to make her sister suicidal! It’s a disgrace! She gave her sister a small red ring case in her ‘will’ and it is declared by the military that it is something dangerous but the only people who know what is inside it is the owner of the red case.

Theo Kimberley (23-years-old and had a job as an assistant science teacher)
Ever heard of the ‘wrong look’? This is when a group of people, mainly a gang, notice you give them a confused or angry glare, which can lead to violence.
Theo Kimberley made this mistake and ran through Doxey Marshes where he was struck off the wall by a penknife thrown by ‘Cry’, the street name of the gang murderer. He was found drowned in the marshes after he shot at the gang known as: ‘North Shot.’

But, then there are the incidents at Dark Oak Farm, which have baffled people around the world.
Firstly, there was ‘the murderer in the attic’ that stalked a local girl called Kathy Kimberley and her deceased sister, Amethyst Kimberley, at the dark farm. He attempted murder but his attempts failed when they escaped the farm and promise never to go back there again. It shows that farms can do more than just hold animals!
Secondly, there was ‘the murder in the conservatory’ where a local girl called Jasmine Jacqueline murdered the local farm girl, Sally Wretch, after escaping from the police and running to the dark farm for shelter but Jasmine ended up attacking the farm girl with a baseball bat.
Lastly, there is the recent incident involving Tess Calamber, the editor of this magazine, who murdered her sister at the entrance of this farm. Tess says: ‘sometimes this magazine can be biased, but only when it is about wonderful me!’
For more information: visit page 53.
Article by Tess ‘Trusted Teen’ Calamber

I gawped at Jasmine as she looked disgustedly down at the magazine article.
“Well?” I asked her in shock.
“Well what?” she said and I stared at her disappointedly, “Alright, alright, I murdered the farm girl.” She continued as if it wasn’t a big deal!
“Do the police know?” I asked angrily.
“Nope and they wont know.” Jasmine smiled.
I quickly dug into my pocket and brought out my phone, quickly dialling ‘999’, giving each number a distinctive individual pressurising push. My finger hovered over the ‘dial’ button. Jasmine grabbed my wrist and stared at me sadly.
“Trust me, don’t tell anyone.” Jasmine muttered with her eyes stern and angry. She pressured me against the wall that her bed was against and pushed my fist into my chest.
My eyes went wide. “Okay, I think I’ll just … go.” I got up, out of her grip, and walked towards her pink door, “Don’t kill me!” I quickly grabbed the penknife on the table and used it as a threat to her. When I escaped out the door, I pocketed the penknife in my dark blue jeans and ran for my life from the murderer. I could never be a friend with a murderer.
I spotted something confusing on her bedside table. I thought, when I spotted it, that she was going to propose to someone.

The long walk home made my heart hammer against my chest. I knew Kathy was going out with Michael and may still be traumatised by his death and heart offering but I began to press the buttons on my phone without even realising.

Kathy, will you go out with me?

I love her more than life itself and always have since I’ve known her for years: nearly my whole life. I love her and I’m not letting Michael steal her from me … again.
I awaited a reply and this is what I got:
‘Hi Drake, sorry but I just want to keep mates because we are better off as mates and can you tell Jasmine that I’m the one that’s sorry not her, OK? She’s not a terrible friend and she’s the best and my best friend and I feel terrible missing her birthday, as it seems, OK? Oh, and I’m the terrible friend and don’t deserve anyone like you too …
From the backstabbing cow.’
That night, I didn’t return home and tried to kill myself for the fifteenth time this week and the thirtieth time this month.

I ended up appearing at the foot of a set of stairs at an abandoned mental institution. No one is supposed to enter here as there are railings blocking the entry and a poisonous gas lingers through the halls of the institution, which kills anyone when inhaled for longer than half an hour.
The red barred balconies overlooked the crying river surrounded by thrushes and bushes and its whistling progress through the Town Centre.
I began to climb up the stairs and stared closely at the graffiti on the walls.
The roof deprived the light from filling the halls with railings blocking the drop from the building to the concrete below. Metal rectangular bars were fixed into one side of the wall to the next where graffiti like: ‘SOUND’ and ‘RAW’ and ‘CRY’, which were gang names and members as well as swear words and other gang names. The metal rectangular bars were once thick windows but the glass was smashed out of them.
There was a hollow whistling sound as the wind shot through the long tunnel that had many doors that led to stairs which, once climbed, would take you to the red barred balconies. There was a sound of digging that ceased every two to five minutes. There was also the sound of skateboard wheels screeching against the floor and the banging sound they made as they jumped and landed against the concrete floor. I felt insecure.
A hand clasped my shoulder, causing me to turn around instantly in shock. It was a boy with spiky, blonde hair and a small, pointy nose. He was frowning.
“You shouldn’t be around these parts. These parts … they are dangerous.” The boy said slowly, taking his hand off my shoulder.
“Who are you?” I asked as I stepped back and tripped on a chain sprawled across the tunnel. I fell back onto the floor and quickly pulled myself up.
“Just call me Raw,” the teenage boy said.
“What’s your real name?” I asked, “Why is Raw written all over the walls in spray paint then?”
“I can’t say my real name and what did you just say?” Raw said angrily.
“I said Raw is written all over the walls.” I said.
“How is that possible?” Raw asked through clenched teeth and walked towards the walls and examined them.
“Did you write this?” Raw asked through clenched teeth.
“Do I look like a gangster?” I moaned and looked at myself. I was wearing a black jumper and black jeans.
“Nah, not really, you look like a wimp though. It’s just that someone, or some gang, has copied my gang member name.” Raw moaned, “What on Earth is that?” He looked over at the metal door and spray painted across it was: ‘BURN’.
“Oh, that’s another gang name.” I said and he looked at me confounded.
“How do you know?” He asked through clenched teeth.
“I overheard a black teenage boy talk about it near Doxey Marshes. There is a DMC gang about now. It stands for Doxey Marshes Crew. They carry penknives and guns.” I said worriedly.
After some hesitation, he spoke. “The name’s Bradley by the way.”
“Mine’s Drake.” I replied.
The constant banging ceased but the digging still went on.
“The poisonous gas here is toxic; we could die in ten minutes or less.” Bradley informed me.
“That’s what I came here for.” I chuckled lightly. Bradley’s eyes travelled the ceiling as the banging on the floor above us began to get louder.
“I’m getting out of here, are you?” Bradley asked.
“Yeah and quick,” I said as I began to cough and splutter, “What do you think ‘BURN’ stands for?” I asked but as I took the first step out of the abandoned mental institution, the sound of shooting echoed throughout the tunnel.
Machine guns shot bullets at an incredible speed from the red barred balconies on the next three floors. The bullets dented the concrete floor and about fifty bullets were hitting the ground at once!
“Quick … run!” Bradley snapped and ran out into the massacre. The ducks on the whistling river that ran through the Town Centre were shot down and sank to the bottom of the river.
I ran after him and put my hand over my head: as if that would do much good!
The gang members above began to shoot faster and most bullets shot through the surface of the water.
I ran towards the main road and three bullets shot through my arm and came out the other side: I felt immense pain and screamed to the heavens. It was ‘North Shot’ firing at me.
I came here to kill myself … I suppose it will happen anyway!
“Come back here yuh stupid idiot! I want yuh dead!” a voice snapped from the balcony.
I came to a bridge that went over the road to a green-grassed field on the other side. I dived underneath it as the cars whirled passed. Bradley got shot in the back a few times when he ran across the road towards the bridge and frowned deeply. He dived under the large bridge and we hid behind the railings that stopped us from getting run over.
“Have you ever killed someone?” I asked panting and coughing.
Bradley stared disbelievingly at me. “No, but I’ve been near to it. Have you?”
“Nope, but I know someone who has and I think you know her.” I said.
“Who killed someone?” Bradley asked angrily.
“Kathy Kimberley. Don’t tell anyone I told you this, but … when she was younger she killed an elderly man with golf clubs and used to smash up cars with them too. She still hasn’t been accused.” I said slowly, looking down at the concrete floor. The shooting had now ceased as most bullets had dented the side of the bridge.
Bradley’s frown deepened and one tear streamed down his face. “That was my grandfather.”




- Jasmine Jacqueline –

‘The script’ café
11:47 a.m.

The café chatter filtrated into a band of noise. I sat on a black sofa in the corner of the coffee scented room with my head resting on my outstretched palm on the arm of the sofa. The music in the background remained no longer able to hear as the chatter became louder.
A pot of coffee and a black mug sat upon the round glass table in front of me. The marble stage at the front of the coffee house called: ‘The Script’ had a woman with a microphone in her hand singing a peaceful yet slightly high-pitched song.
I was the only one in the coffee house with glass coffee beans stuck upon the beige walls. There were portraits of famous actors on the walls after every medium sized glass coffee bean.
The waitress strolled by and stopped at my table.
“Would you like anything, miss?” the waitress asked, she looked very familiar.
“Nah, I have no money.” I said as I sipped at my frothy coffee with three teaspoons of sweetener. The waitress looked out of the large window.
“Are you Tess, the one at the hospital?” I asked, interrupting her from her constant staring outside.
“Yes and you’re Jasmine, aren’t you? It’s nice to see you here. Would you mind taking over my job for me for ten minutes while I talk to my friend outside?” the waitress asked very unreasonably.
“What did you just say?” I asked angrily.
“I’ll pay you!” the waitress frowned.
“Alright then, I’ll help you with your job.” I sighed and she passed the coffee jug to me and threw her apron over my shoulders.
“Thank you, so much.” Tess smiled at me.
“Is this your first day?” I asked.
“How did you guess?” Tess frowned then ran for the door.
I sighed deeply and began to walk around the café as cautiously as possible in case the manager of the café spotted me.
I sighed heavily as I trudged around the café with a hot jug of coffee in my left hand; I walked over to a table near the window and poured some of the contents of the coffee into two mugs of a chatting couple in a deep conversation.
The atmosphere of the café is normally quiet, but today it is snowing heavily outside and everyone has decided to sit in at the script instead of freezing outside, so the atmosphere is very loud.
I groaned as she poured the coffee into the two cups, one cup overflowed onto the tablecloth as I caught sight of someone at the corner of her eye, someone I loathed a lot.
I left the annoyed couple whose hands were covered in hot coffee and strolled over to my father sitting at the table in the far corner alone, smiling at his daughter, I had fire in her eyes, anger overwhelming her.
“Dad, what is it this time? Shouldn’t you be at the university, or have they fired you again?” my eyes rolled as I spoke and I smirked at him.
“Cant a dad drop in and speak to his daughter for once in fifteen years? I’ve come to speak to you about your phone call last week. I think you told me that you needed to kill your best friend; I think I recall you calling her bitter. I cannot have that. I want you to be happy and live in the justice of the world not the injustice. So, what’s the problem?” my father replied.
“You of all people should know the problem. It was the dying wish of one of my dearest friends and Kathy murdered someone so I think she should be taken in by the police anyway.” I placed the jug of coffee on the table and sat down on the seat opposite.
“Jasmine, you may not have spoken to me in years but surely you remember that my occupation is a policeman?” my father said.
I covered my mouth with my palms and gasped.
“You weren’t supposed to know that!” I snapped.
“Ah, but it is quite beneficial to us. Kathy Kimberley smashed cars for amusement two years ago and quite frankly, she needs to be fined and imprisoned for the murder of an elderly local man, his grandson was positively devastated! Where could I find her?” my father asked. He was wearing a brown jacket that covered his shirt and dark blue jeans.
A familiar female voice spoke through the noise of the customers. I looked up at her and Tess followed her.
“Well, I don’t know why you want to work here when your life long ambition is to be a musician!” Kathy chuckled.
“I do both, that’s the great part! I work here yet I sing every day at 12, which is in ten minutes!” Tess’ eyes went wide as she stared at the large gold clock on the wall.
My father slowly reached into his pocket. Kathy acme over and sat down on the sofa next to me. I began to shake violently.
“What’s up? Ooh, coffee. Could I have a sip?” Kathy asked and she swiped the coffee off the table and began to sip as I nodded.
My father brought a black object out of his pocket and when it was visible, I realised it was a gun. I gulped nervously.
He held up the gun to Kathy’s face and she raised her hands, she looked bewildered.
“Put your hands up! You are guilty of committing a murder two years ago that was falsely accused to Drake Carter. If you make one move, I’ll shoot.”
Tess’ voice rang out to the crowd.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

‘The Script’ café
11:59 a.m.

The words poured out of me when I saw Kathy being held custody and dragged towards the entrance of the coffee shop. My words were my guide to peace …

Every passing day,
My heart will say …
Death will show the way!

You deserve the loss,
You deserve the pain.
You deserve the consequences and the fall of rain.

What am I supposed to do?
When love will guide us through!
When life will take its course again,
When I will fall down to you with nothing more …

Than loss and pain,
To show the reign,
To keep me by your side!

Because …

Every passing day!
My heart will say!
Death will show the way!

When I talk to you,
I feel empty and broken,
When you call me,
Then I see,
That you and nothing else will stand by me, forever dead!

Lies …
Always come back to haunt you!
They break your heart,
They make you cry,
But then there’s always what happens …

Every passing day …
My heart will say!
Death will show the way …

Keep me near to you,
Show me through and through …
When the consequences of life will keep me near to you!
I want to SEE you!
I want to HEAR you!
I want to BE you!

Every passing day,
My heart will … say:
Death will show the way.

Every passing day!
My heart will say …
Death will show the way.

Every passing day,
My heart will say!
Death will show the way!

Lies …

Always come back to haunt you!
They break your heart,
They make you cry!
But then there’s always what happens …

You deserve the loss,
You deserve the pain.
You deserve the consequences and the fall of rain.

Everyone in the café applauded me cheerfully yet there were a few people who booed me.
Kathy was taken out of the coffee shop, leaning her back against the front of the policeman, and was taken into the Town Centre that was tucked to bed by a huge fleet of soft snow. Jasmine remained sitting on the sofa, sipping her coffee. Even from this distance, I knew she was smirking.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

River Sow riverbank (Town Centre)
2:15 p.m.

Bradley had beaten me up and stole all my money and belongings and left me here in the cold. I felt the pain sting all over me yet the intention to move had become a distant memory.
I am forced to live near a river and a long bridge that crosses to the other side of it.
I am ALONE …
I have no one …
I live near a river …
A bridge is the only way to escape, but there is no way of crossing it … I meet someone there every morning; we have a conversation as if we’ve known each other since we were born …
I lost my family, but the closest of my family perished in my past: my brother. My parents didn’t want em in their house anymore after I nearly killed my brothers. They hate me and don’t understand me: they don’t realise how terrible living inside this warehouse is!
My mind is a blur … but… I don’t understand why. They went on a sailing trip: my mother, father and my two brothers two weeks ago. It was my father’s dream: to sail around the world. They’ll be anywhere around the world by now.
I look into the river every morning from the high distance between the bridge and the murky water below. As I stare into the river, my reflection stares back at me, but as I stare into the clear and shining water, I see my reflection crying … as if the river told my future.
I cry every night, my tears my only freedom.
I look out the window of the abandoned warehouse (where I live) across the road of the abandoned mental institution to see water, stretching on and on into the intermitting distance.
I have NO escape.
I am TRAPPED, forever …
I always used to be the intelligent one in the family, my mum always used to say that my future would be full of praise, piles of books and education. I guess she was wrong.
That was until I never saw them again …
When their freedom ended …
But, then I met Arthur and my world turned around: I had a friend for once in my miserable life.
There is a huge and frightening gap in between the two sides of the bridge, an atrocious drop, as if pulling its visitors down into the depths of the river of tears, which is what I called it.
I watched the world fade by every morning as the cars shot by. The warehouse had damp chairs and two halves of a broken mirror leant against the wall. I need a home and soon!
Poetry seemed to be a burden since Michael died and I believed that if I wrote a poem for Kathy then she’d love me as much as she loved Michael, although, I was feeling as if I didn’t like Kathy as much as before as she was getting quite fat.
I still went to college everyday and was earning enough money to buy a hotel room. I have all my belongings and clothes in my large, brown suitcase.
As the birds fluttered by with the evening breeze as their support, I sat on my suitcase on the riverbank. I had a notepad and black ballpoint pen in my hands so I began to write:


What made me feel like this?
A hollowness, which cannot be altered,
The fear, which is my guide
Yet I cannot hide
From the depression and guilt
That fear failed and faltered
Like a large quilt
That is Covering me and drowning me.
My life ambitions were destroyed.
I never knew depression would hear me whilst I





But show me when,
Show me how,
The darkness of the night consumes my sorrows.
To be suicidal
And free
From the happiness which some people
I understand you,
You do not understand me,
You will never see,
The freedom, which I seek
And yet,
I fear:
This is how I disappear!
Understand me
Because I no longer believe
What caused me to deceive?
The darkness and sorrow,
Which I’d die for to borrow!
Leave me alone,
Let me know,
How to avoid the blade of suicide
The snapped, sharp pointed toothbrush of sorrow
Or the broken glass reflecting my depressive face
Suppressed by the past.
I will be FREE
From the depression that stalks me.
I need to know,
What life will show when I never:
Believe you,
Be you, to see you again.
I feel the depression, which is my lifelong reflection.
I’m like a bird,
Waiting …
Waiting …
Waiting …to be free from the bars that trap my misery.
I’m like a broken vase, waiting for the broken pieces to come back together again
Hear my voice and don’t ignore it!
Leave me here to be destroyed
And annoyed!
Come to me
And never be the depression, in which I seek to destroy,
Blossoming inside me like a foul flickering flower!
I was depressed
In a nest
I cannot escape from.
The hole in my heart: is depression.
You are the lesser of two evils
Yet I am evil
To be here,
Listening to you
And your problems
Like a solemn poem,
Opening up as I read it and yet,
As it consumes me,
I believe that I will dream of a world no longer eaten alive by
Melancholy …
I wish I were glad as many others proclaim.
You know me for my personality and clarity with the humanity in the world.
I am and always will be:

- Jasmine Jacqueline –

I dug into my pockets and pulled out the red case. The amethyst diamonds glimmered in the lights from the ceiling and the orange spotlight looming over Tess on stage.
I peered inside.

I had 20 days until the bomb exploded and wiped out the whole town. I need to stop this bomb, but how?
I pressed it against my ear and listened intently to the constant loud ticking.
A small, glass screen looked up at me with the black digital numbers behind: slicing away the seconds.
480 hours.
26 minutes.
59 seconds until destruction.
Tess stepped down from the stage and walked towards me. “Can I have my apron back?” she asked. I threw the apron towards her with ‘the script’ written across it and she caught it instantly.
“So, do you want anything at all?” Tess asked.
“How ‘bout I have a bottle of champagne?” I asked slowly.
“Yeah, it’s on the house. What’s that?” Tess asked in shock, pointing at the open object on the table next to my coffee mug.
I simply sighed deeply.
“Are you the one who gave Kathy the book with the message inside?” Tess asked as she sat down on the empty sofa opposite me.
A few people departed from the coffee house, leaving only three tables occupied.
I nodded with my lips pierced nervously.
“Is that the red case?” Tess gasped.
“Tess, get into the kitchen now!” a male voice snapped from the door behind the counter.
I quickly swiped it and pocketed it when she turned her head to snap ‘wait a minute!’ back at her boss and as she searched the counter for bowls, mugs or plates, I placed the fake (wedding proposal) red case I had pick pocketed from Kathy that day in the library: it slipped out of her pocket as she slammed the book out of my hands.
Tess’ glare returned to the red case, the engagement ring case, placed upon the table. It was now closed; the back of it faced her.
“Hand it over! I need to give it back to Kathy!” Tess snapped at me.
I hit it with the palm of my hand so that it skidded across the marble table and landed onto Tess’ lap.
“There you go!” I snapped back at her, “Now can I have my champagne?”
The coffee house doors squeaked open and I turned around to see who it was. Drake entered and as soon as he spotted us he jogged over.
I glared at him angrily and so did Tess.
“So, Drake, two months ago you told us you were dying … well?” Tess snapped at him.
“I was told about it too, you claim that today you would be in hospital dying!” I snapped at him as the smile across his face faded and he grabbed a chair from an empty table and dragged it across the floor to our table.
Drake’s face became red and he looked ill mannered and guilty. His hands were shaking uncontrollably and his perspiration was running down his face.
“I lied … I’m sorry.” Drake whispered, looking down at the table as tears began to run down his face.
“We may not beat you up as Michael did,” Tess ran her finger under her eyes to stop tears flowing down her face, “but you are cruel and mean! You ought to be in jail!”
Drake chuckled lightly, lifting his head back up. “Don’t over exaggerate!” His eyes were bloodshot.
“But you lied to us! Michael would be turning in his grave!” Tess snapped at me as I wept into my hands.
“Just don’t hate me!” Drake snapped at us, “I hate you all; you don’t understand how horrible my life is!”
“Tell that to Kathy who’s in jail!” Tess snapped.
“She’s going to be prosecuted! That’s a lot worse than your problems!” I snapped at him and Tess and Drake stared at me in shock and bewilderment.
“What did you just say?” Tess snapped angrily.
A chill swept over me yet I smirked happily. Everything was going according to plan.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

It was getting dark, and I was getting cold. My fingers were numb from the icy wind; I was alone in a small circle metal room. I lay, strapped to the cold floor shivering with fear. I lay there waiting, just waiting for terror to open the door next to me and push the button on the wall. I’ve been in here for three weeks, with no food or water to quench my thirst or fill my dreaded hunger.
The clock on the wall ticked silently, slicing away the seconds, minutes and hours of my life in this horrible room. I had a proper life once until I made some mistakes, which brought me here. If only I could just turn back the clock then I wouldn’t be in this room.
He says he’s going to kill me soon. As bad as that sounds, I can’t wait for it to happen. Next to me is a hole, quite a big hole. I once asked what’s down there and he wouldn’t give me an answer. Every time terror comes through the door, everything changes. He keeps coming in on a regular basis, sometimes it’s horrible but sometimes it’s not that bad.
Last time he teased me with food, eating it near me, relishing on its taste. I can’t move my arms or legs; I’m trapped like a criminal: I am a criminal. I’m just a fool. I begged to be let free but he wouldn’t talk. He only talks sometimes, when it’s important.
Suddenly I heard the key turn in the lock. I pulled with all my strength, trying to break free. As the door creaked open I shook with fear and started to cry, because today is the day I die …
Michael’s heart didn’t last as long as I expected …

Twenty Days Later …



/ . /
- Drake Carter –

I sprinted down the stairs of the abandoned warehouse where one minute ago I was staring out of the window and spotted a familiar face in the window of the abandoned mental institution.
Every step I took had the word: ‘Blaze’ sprayed or written on it or mainly ‘Burn’.
The only way to the other side of the bridge is to go through the forest on the left-hand side of the warehouse. Usually, when I talk to Arthur on my side of the bridge, not able to cross it, I run through the forest ready to meet him but when I get there: he’s gone.
After the struggle of pushing branches away from my face and dodging trees and nettles, I finally made it and quickly placed my shirt over my nose so that the smell of the poisonous toxic gas didn’t act on my lungs as quickly as before. I suddenly felt ill as I inhaled it, though. I jumped through the gap in the barred fence with barbed wire circling it.
Bradley’s pale face appeared out of the corner of my eye as I stepped off the final step and he stood there at the entrance, smirking.
“I know who BURN is now.” Bradley said as I ran towards him and he held out his hand and I placed a Swiss army knife in his palm.
“What’s in it for me?” I asked.
“Three thousand pounds, enough to rent a hotel room for quite some time.” Bradley smiled at me but when a loud banging sound came from above, his smile ceased to exist. He stared up at the ceiling then back at me.
“Don’t you think murder is a bit too extreme?” I asked shakily.
“Drake, when you get a gang and think that nothing is more important than your reputation, you’d kill someone for your gang member name anyway.” Bradley grumbled as he held the knife up to his face and took steady steps towards the slanted roof exit from the abandoned warehouse where he would either get blown to pieces by the machine guns they seem to carry or he would surprise them by running up the stairs on the outside of the warehouse.
“Let’s go,” I gulped, “murder.”


/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I’m far from home and this prison is built on top of a mountain: a dormant volcano. I’m not sure what the volcano is called. I feel shakes beneath me regularly in the middle of the night.
The doorknob squeaked as it was turned and in came hell: the man who would execute me soon.
“Kathy Kimberley, mass murderer!” the man chuckled, the black mask still covered his face.
“Not a mass murderer! I only murdered one man and it was two years ago!” I snapped angrily through clenched teeth.
“Time doesn’t alter how horrendous a crime is.” The police officer moaned.
“Shut up!” I snapped at him.
“See, look at yourself! Angry and violent! That man never knew he’d get smacked across the head with a golf club, did he?” the policeman snapped back at me, “You even murdered your fiancé! You took away his heart!” the policeman knelt down and pressed the side of his head against my chest and listened to the heartbeat. I tried to hit him bit the chains were fixed around my arms, legs, body and head: I couldn’t move, “Steady heartbeat, don’t you think? Hmm, a bit too relaxed. The old man would have lived a healthy life with a steady heartbeat too if you hadn’t taken it away from him. He got cremated, didn’t he?”
I nodded angrily.
“Who were you with that night? We found two golf clubs.” The policeman asked shrilly.
I didn’t reply.
“Ah, well I suppose you’ll never see that person again because you are going to be in here for ten years.” The policeman smirked.
“Ten years?” I asked through clenched teeth and surprise. Anger swelled up inside me.
“Yes, miss murderer!” the policeman grumbled as he began to circle me slowly.
“You don’t understand! I have to be set free because I was left behind a red case in my sister’s will and it will blow in the next hour!” I snapped.
“Don’t lie to me.” The policeman gave me an evil grin then an angry glare before stepping out of the prison cell and locking the barred door behind him.
The ground beneath me began to vibrate vigorously: it felt like a tremor. Building a prison atop a dormant volcano is a VERY bad idea.


/ . /
- Drake Carter –

Phone call

“Why did you lie to me!” the voice on the other side of the phone snapped vigorously.
“Do you hate me?” I asked, chuckling slightly.
“Hmm, let me think.” The voice said angrily.
“I’m so sorry, please don’t hate me!” I snapped with sympathy in my words.


“Oh, shut up - you’re worthless to me now! How could you lie to me about something like that?” the voice was sharp and vicious.
“Oh well, it’s my social life and not yours! Just stop stomping on my life and ruining it! I can lie and lie whenever I like, so just SHUT UP!” I snapped at the top of my voice.
Suddenly, a loud bang erupted from the background of the tall trees atop the tall hills stretching across the horizon and reaching towards the sky.
Ash clouds fluttered through the sky and cloaked the grey clouds. I felt the temperature rise slightly and the screams of many frightened children filled the chatter of the crowds of people walking by the abandoned warehouse.
The ground began to shudder and shake lightly at first then violently afterwards. It came as a sudden surprise and caused me to stumble slightly but not fall. I dropped the knife clenched in my hand and I heard the voice on the other side of the phone screaming before it fell out of my hand.
Suddenly, the shuddering stopped. Bradley ran out of sight and up the stone steps, ignoring the sudden change, the penknife was still close to his chest like a second heart.
“What had just happened?” I shouted to the stairs and, despite not being able to see Bradley, and awaited a reply.
“Shh!” He snapped back at me and I heard his voice from the floor above.


I began to shiver again as a strong breeze swept through the abandoned mental institution and the poisonous gas brushed over me with a mixture of the ash and cinders from the ash clouds.
I felt as if a clock was ticking inside my head and I knew something horrendous soon would happen. My heart began to hammer against my chest and I felt as if the inside of my heart had exploded as I ran after Bradley and up the stairs. Every step further up the stairs added more pressure onto my heart.
“Bradley!” I snapped in a shrill whisper.
I heard a cry echo against the walls and a shriek of pain followed by.
Constant coughing filled the air: my own and a deeper cough from the floor above.
“Bradley, can you hear me?”
Spluttering was next and as I took the last three steps without looking up and ran onto the marble floor that went on for a great distance. This was once a car park. The roof curved down and was inches away from my hair.
“R-run, Drake, BURN has penknives!” Bradley coughed loudly and once I saw the horrible image with the crowd (in jackets with hoods covering their faces) cowering over Bradley with blood covered penknives clasped in their hands: I ran. I ran as fast as my legs would carry me!


- Jasmine Jacqueline –

I stared down at the open red case in my clenched hand underneath the table.
“Jasmine, are you alright?” Tess asked as she realised I hadn’t spoken in a while.
“Huh? Yeah, I’m … fine.” I lied.
We (Tess, Helena and me) were in the coffee house again and as the stench of coffee was overwhelmingly swimming around the surroundings, I felt a hollow feeling inside me.
“The amazing voice of Tess Calamber will be filling your hearts in fifteen minutes!” a female voice came from the speaker system.
I began to shake uncontrollably as the quiet beeping sounded every second the clock counted down.
Get rid of it!
A whisper shot through my head.
It’s going to explode in fifteen minutes, get rid of it!
“So, I think I’ll order something. Do you want anything, Jasmine?” Helena said as she sat opposite me. Helena had long, gleaming blonde hair and was quite tall. Her fingers were covered in multicoloured rings that buried her fingers completely.
“Excuse me for just a sec.” I said as I was sweating so much that a river would soon flow through the coffee house. I ran for the toilet door and burst through where once I spotted the sink I leant over it and felt an overpowering urge to be sick.
I stared at my reflection in the mirror and I didn’t look healthy at all. I suppose it was over worry. I bared my teeth at my reflection before smashing my fist against it and shattering it to pieces. The shards shot onto the white tiled floor in a second. Bad luck for seven years – as it is believed – oh well!
The silent beeping continued to stab at my patience so I cursed and threw the red case onto the floor. It bounced and a quiet ‘THUMP’ broke the silence.
The wiring fell out of the case and the lid snapped off. The timer hung off a few wires and soon, this coffee house would no longer exist.
Save myself. Save myself. Save myself. The one thought that exploded in my head like a luminous noticeable firework. I quickly ran out of the toilet door and it hit me on the way out.
I ran through the coffee house and as soon as I saw Tess trudge up the steps onto the stage, I felt that hollow feeling that was making me feel so ill. Tess would perform in fifteen minutes, as the voice had said. Fifteen minutes until destruction (I’m not insulting Tess’ singing; I’m describing the bomb explosion.)
I sprinted passed the waitress and knocked her onto the floor. The entrance doors were my only hope and I quickly shot through them.


I felt the doors pulse through the air and hit my back. The doors were shot forward by the force of the bomb and knocked off their hinges and a trail of fire filled the coffee house.
I fell forward and my nose hit the ground. My back was burning with pain and my eyes were stinging. Screaming was the only sound that could be heard and the creaking of the roof of the coffee house as it collapsed and crushed everything underneath it.
The coffee machine inside must have burst as coffee shot through the air in huge quantities. Parts of the walls and chunks of metal flung through the air at great speed and shot to the roof of the shopping centre opposite as fast as a bolt of lightning.
The ground began to shudder fast and frighteningly: frightened people walking by were knocked off their feet and landed on their faces, lamp posts tumbled over and everything fell either forward or backwards.
I was suppressed by what was occurring: I was a fear filled fool who had abandoned her friends to save her own pathetic life. I stared down at the concrete floor an inch away from me, covered in my own blood from my face that had been damaged from the fall.
I sprawled to my feet and sprinted as fast as the metal chunks flew to the shopping centre roof. I looked to the left where the mountains loomed over the town and saw a pool of something that caused my heart to skip a beat. Yet, for some reason, I was smirking.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I was standing below an erupting beast of lava, its mountainous shape and amazing height frightening me yet amazing me. It’s active, it’s composite and it’s exploding with sprays of burning liquid (lava) and showers of ash. I shivered with discomfort and increasing fear.
All the houses and shops were gone. All the population of the town were gone. The lava rushed down through the slope on the mountain and acted like a powerful wave above me and streamed downwards at a great speed, overwhelming me with fear and a raise in temperature.
The windowpane I was leaning against was showered with sprinkles of burning lava (it was once magma but once it reached the Earth’s surface, it became deadly lava: wiping out everything in sight) and blocked my view of the mountains.
I yanked at the metal bars that stood in front of thick glass like my life depended on it! – Well, they do depend on my life!
I leapt towards the door but the chains pulled me back. I ran as fast as possible but the chains were holding me back. I kicked and punched frantically to try and pry myself free from the chains.
The wooden door was there in front of me. It seemed so easy. It seemed this would only take minute effort to grab hold of the doorknob and break myself free.
I pushed forward and hammered against the wood with my fist.
“Someone HELP!” I screamed as loud as my voice would go, causing my throat to sting.
The glass was melting and became a thick liquid, as it was when it was first made. It melted from the top and dripped down onto the stone mantelpiece and onto the stone floor.
I crawled towards the other side of the prison cell and as I did, the sound of an alarm erupting with a constant bleeping noise began to echo throughout the prison.
I screamed as the molten lave trickled its way towards my shoes. It slithered like a snake with red, burning venom towards me. I kept my eyes as wide as possible and refrained from blinking.
The chains reached the ceiling and kept me trapped so I couldn’t reach the door. I had a temporary idea that came to mind. I began to climb up the grey steel chains and pulled myself up so I was getting further and further away from the floor.
I yanked and pulled at the chains, moving my hands further up every time and my feet supporting me against the stonewall. The lava began to fill the room: most of it was thick but some of it was a runny liquid and travelled faster which meant only one thing – it’s even more dangerous! The higher lava’s content of silica, the less easily it flows! (I paid attention in geography as it may come in handy in situations like this!)
The walls became no longer existent as the lava ate its way through it and melted the floor on its way through the prison cell. As it came to the opposite wall, it melted its way through the thick stonewall and came out the other side where it flowed quickly down the mountainside. I was surrounded by molten lava and if I jumped down to run away: I’d die!
I screamed so loud that my head was bursting with an overpowering headache and my throat felt like I was eating nettles! The door set alight as the lava trickled by and soon the room was filled with ravenous flames feeding on everything in sight.


My voice was a high-pitched screech as I screamed so loud that my eardrums felt as it they’d collapse.
“Someone come and help me! Please … p-p-p-please!” I stuttered as my throat stung with agony.
The door was completely destroyed and the hallway lay there in front of me: untouched by the slow progress of the lava. There was a small space of concrete below me and the lava was surrounding it. I gulped, closed my eyes and jumped down from the wall and landed on the small space of safety.
A risky idea flowed through my mind like the lava in its vicious progress. I slowly lowered my scarred and slit wrist down to the lava and as I gasped from the intense heat coving off it, I placed the left handcuff into the lava and then quickly pulled my wrist away. The lava had eaten its way through the handcuff! I yanked the left one off and threw it against the wall.
I then lowered my right wrist and placed it in the bubbling lava that was closing in on me – fast!
I looked up to stop myself panting with fear. I counted the seconds: 1 … 2 … 3 … 4 … I gasped and flinched in pain!
I slowly stared down and pulled my wrist swiftly away from the lava. The scarred skin on my wrist had been consumed by the lava and blood spewed out of my damaged wrist. A red, slippery vein stuck out on my wrist and I could hear my angry pulse.
I quickly grasped the chain with both hands that had once imprisoned my wrist and leapt so that I swung from the handcuff attached to it and over the lava. I landed in the hallway and began to sprint as fast as my quivering legs would carry me. Goodbye, lava. Goodbye, life.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

The liquid shot through the abandoned warehouse and destroyed the floor and melted to the floor below it. It sprayed like a fountain at everything in sight.
Bradley lay in the middle of the car park stabbed through his heart by the teenagers that had now sprinted away. I will avenge BURN sooner than they think.
I sprinted towards the stairs and took three steps at a time until I reached the third floor: the rooms where the patients would have been interviewed.
The doors were broken down and the windows were smashed. There were about fifty rooms, all opposite each other down the huge corridor where the poisonous gas flew invisibly throughout the hallway.
Where was BURN? Where were they hiding? I sprinted towards the door labelled ‘Interview room 3: do not enter unless supervised by hospital staff.’
I slowly turned the doorknob and it felt as cold as ice, prickling my fingers but forcing me not to hesitate … just in case. My handclasps around the icy doorknob and my fingers began to tremble. Just one more turn and then the door will open … one more turn. Inside the room, I hear a constant banging that seemed to echo beneath the wood.
As the bang becomes a hollow tapping, I pressed my right ear against the echoing wood and my ear felt like it was being stabbed. The squeak of the doorknob made the situation more unforgivable and uncomfortable as I twisted it once more and I slowly pushed the door, which opened an inch.
I stared into the gap I had made and saw something violet, it swung by blissfully and once it had disappeared there seemed to be a silvery, reflective object presented in front of me. The silvery object looked slightly familiar but the thought of something like that seemed impossible. It slashed by and as it did, it dented the wood and a streak crossed the surface: a centimetre away from my pale face.
The sound was hollow as was my heart as I pressured the door with my two outstretched palms and it moved another inch. I could stand it no longer: I closed my eyes and gave the door one enormous push. The door swung open widely and hit the wall beside it.
I saw two blue eyes: fixed on me. I stormed into the room, pointing the penknife at every object in the interview room. It was a small room: a matted, moth-eaten sofa sat in the corner of the room with its insides hanging out. Above it was a large lamp, tall and bent in the middle, with a lampshade missing and the ‘bulb’ was broken, its shards were scattered across the room, mainly on the tatty sofa.
A sadistic chuckle came from the other side of the wall. I immediately locked my eyes on the far wall. The wall was covered in splotches of green: dried rainwater.
There was another door. I leapt over the broken chair and instantly clasped the rusty doorknob and twisted it. It wouldn’t budge. The door was locked.
I looked around the room for a way to break down the door. It was useless: I couldn’t break the door down with a rusty, broken lamp! I leant against the wall and stared down at my flexing hand as it began to sweat from the penknife clasped inside it … the penknife …
“Of course, the penknife could break down the door!” I whispered under my breath. I began to hammer the blade against the wood and the hollow wood caved in instantly. A huge gaping hole appeared and I lowered my head, squinting.
“Hello, anyone there?” I croaked nervously.
Heartless chuckling filled the silence. I awaited a reply and I got a terrifying one.
“Who are you?” I asked the darkness.
“BURN,” the whisper was shrill and sent a chill up my spine and a block of ice appeared in my throat.
“You killed my best friend!” I snapped back at the male voice that spoke.
I heard a crackling behind me. I quickly swung around to face the door: it was on fire and the lava was seeping in under the door.
“Not long now, the pillars that hold this place upright will soon enough collapse from the lava and yuh will die.” The low, throaty voice said. Smoke drifted through the hole I had made: they were sitting around and smoking.
“Won’t you die? You’re just smoking!” I snapped.
“There’s a broken window in here. We’ll go soon and leave you to die with your friend.” A girl’s high-pitched, sadistic voice spoke.
“Bradley’s not dead?” I asked.
“I’m not talking about Bradley.”
I became as cold as a frozen glacier in Antarctica.
“Arthur!” I snapped as loud as my voice would go but my throat began to close in on it as I said the name.
“Exactly, you learn quick.” The girl said.
“Who are you?” I asked.
“BURN, I’ve already told you.”
“No, your name, not your gang name.” I asked.
“STOP ASKING QUESTIONS OR I’LL KILL YUH!” the male voice snapped as he moved closer to the hole in the door. His face became visible slightly from the glow of the lava. I took a step back in fright but my shoe landed in the burning liquid. My shoe set alight and burnt off and soon the lava ate its way through my sock and burnt my skin. My skin was as violet as the object that had swung by earlier. I screeched in pain.
A parade of laughter came from the other side of the door.
The lava was seeping closer.
“Where is Arthur? What have you done with him?” I asked as I panted heavily. I was pressed against the door, as far away from the lava as possible.
A muffled voice that attempted to speak came from the room on the other side of the door.
“Arthur! Is that you, Arthur?” I snapped.
“He is being held hostage.” Angela said.
“What do you want from me?” I screeched in frustration as the lava edged closer.
“Thirty thousand pounds.” The male voice grumbled.
“Whoa, I don’t have that sort of money!” I snapped, waving my hands in front of me.
“Then yuh mate dies.”
“This isn’t fair!” I snapped.
The lava crept closer: a centimetre away from me.
“Yuh don’t have much time,” he grumbled.
“Er … fine just open this door!” I snapped angrily.
“We’re not that stupid!” Angela said.
“How do I get out of here before it collapses then?” I asked quivering.
“Work it out.” Another voice said.
I leapt for the broken chair and pounced on it. A cloud of dust and dead insects fluttered out of the chair. Alive moths flew out of the insides of the chair and the chair became baggy: there must have been hundreds of moths in there!
The lava was eating away at the legs of the chair; some had already collapsed once I jumped onto it, which made the chair slanted. I didn’t have long. I needed to escape and fast!
I grabbed the lamp and hooked it onto the doorknob of the door I had entered ten minutes ago. It was stuck there firm and tight, but there is a chance the metal may bend further or snap and I’ll fall into the depths of the deadly lava below me.
I would have to balance across the thin metal and make it to the other side without falling in.
I took one step onto the metal and began to walk across. My arms were outstretched at my sides so that I could balance. I took one sturdy and steady step at a time.
To my surprise the metal did not bend any further yet I was dreading stepping onto the bent part of the metal. My shoeless foot started to tingle from the immense heat of the lava arming the metal. I wish metal wasn’t a conductor of heat right now.
I gulped as I stepped onto the middle of the lamp. My heart pumped as fast as lightning as the metal bent further outwards and was about an inch away from sinking in the lava. I quickly scurried forward and jumped onto the end of the lamp: I cut my foot on the broken glass from the bulb and screamed in agony.
I closed my eyes and leapt into the hallway from which I came. There was no lava in the hallway. There were no gangs. There were no windows. There was no floor! I rocketed down to the floor below, my hands flying everywhere, reaching for somewhere to grab.
The lava had eaten the floors and most of the institute – fortunately, not the pillars holding this place together.
I was falling …
Falling …
Falling to my death!
Then I spotted the thin pole stretching across the whole institute and untouched by lava. My hands flawed at my sides and frantically grabbed for the pole. Once I was near enough, I stretched my hands out and somehow caught onto it.
Before I even realised, I was spinning around the pole, my legs flying in the air as I circulated the pole. Let go … let go soon … my grip slipped and I flew forwards, shooting through the air.
My eyes opened and I stared down. I was looking down at nothingness. I looked up, and my hands had grabbed something. I pulled my self, trying my best not to slip and fall to my death.
I crawled to the top of what I was nervously attached to. I stared up and saw clouds: black with ash. I was standing on a wooden windowpane. I felt relief as the breeze brushed against my skin.
I had begun to cough and splutter and looked below me where a river was sprinkled with ash. I saw my reflection in the river: my face, arms and shirt were covered in thick mounds of ash from the ash clouds.
The only way out of here was to jump and swim back to the town through the deep river. The river would also come as an advantage for getting this annoying, aggravating ash off of me!
Jump …
I closed my eyes and put my flat palms together in a diving position. I bent my legs and dove into the murky depths of the water. I felt a million knives stab my body as the frozen temperature of the river attacked my skin violently.
I pushed the water away from me as I swam onwards. I realised, as I progressed down the river through the tall weeds and thrushes that essence of lava swam by now and then and burnt my shirt, burning holes into it.
The ash washed off of me as I came to the surface and took deep breaths in and out. My lungs were on fire! I don’t know how my lungs could cope: ash, poisonous gas for twenty-seven minutes (luckily not three minutes more or else I’d be as dead as Bradley) and water filling up inside from the gulps of water I accidentally consumed.
My head was spinning. Today was confounding and dangerous. I felt agony as I looked over all the people that had died today: Bradley, possibly Arthur, most of the population and one important person: my confidence.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

I have avoided death many times before and somehow luck has offered me one last chance.
The oxygen in my lungs was pressured out of me at once as the roof collapsed upon everyone in the coffee house.
I felt the blood from my split lip drip down my chin and onto the crushed microscope underneath me. I tried to get up my legs felt like they were broken – maybe they were. My stomach was lurching with pain and my eyes were watering from the immense heat. Everything in the coffee house was either on fire or burnt, but everything in the room was buried in ashes from the clouds ‘innocently’ floating by.
Disaster: glass from the mugs and glasses was scattered all over the stage, the doors had been blown off their hinges, the glass from the windows had popped straight out of the windowpane as if it had been shot by twenty bullets, blood had been spilled, the walls of the bathroom had been demolished and the wooden chairs were a pile of splinters.
I bit my bottom lip as I clambered to my feet. My head was spinning: everything in the room was a blur. My head was as hot as a boiled kettle and I felt overwhelmed by what had just happened.
The radio somehow continued to play and rather frighteningly, a song was playing with one frightening word linked to today hidden in the lyrics: ‘BURN’.
I gasped as everyone groaned in pain: the injured ones, that is. The people who weren’t moving were … dead.


In the NORTH
Carrie Stanza

This is foolish. Just simply creep by, although, you must be quiet. That’s one thing I must remember: BE QUIET.
I heard the gentle breathing of my brother filling the hollow, silent bewildered corridors. The corridors never spoke, the voices upstairs never whispered. Everything here was as silent as a courtyard with no life at all despite the only difference: there was life here – for now.
The luminous moon’s light trickled across the stars and dripped through the window and reflected off my nephew’s pale face.
He breathed in then breathed out ever … so … silently like the sound of fog drifting through the air.
The floorboards creaked as I crept towards my sister’s door. My father wasn’t beside her, though. My father had walked out on us when I was only one year old then fourteen years later: I watched my father barge in and attack my mother and sister for what they did when I was only one year old. Yes … that was only yesterday. I had sat at the top of the stairs, weeping into my hands for hours on end.
Five hours later: I’m still weeping. Half an hour after that: I’m still weeping ever … so … silently.
I hear the gentle breathing of my nephew die down, yet it is still at a steady pace. My nephew was born last year; he didn’t have a father because my sister never thought she’d find someone again so she came to a different conclusion of what to do.
Some day, my nephew will meet his father … but he can barely walk without falling over into a crawl at the moment so I doubt he will find him on his own. The only information about his father is that he is number 1435672. When you think about it, the question of ‘Hailey, how could you?’ pops into your head. Quite depressing really, which is what will probably happen to Riley Stanza when he reaches my age: the age when depression strikes like a snake forcing a venomous bite into you and the swirling venom to spread all over you and weaken you over time as you generally wear away constantly. How well the word ‘depression’ rings in my mind like a familiar name of a family member.
I raised my arm and my fist was clenched, hovering in front of the door: ready to knock. I cleared my throat and moved my hand to the doorknob where I clenched it nervously. Sweat was trickling like wax from a flame down across my wrist. Well, I hoped it was sweat. I hesitated before pressing my ear against the wood.
“Why did you do this to me?” my sister’s voice was thickened by crying. With my free hand, I wiped away the hot tears. It felt like I was scalding myself from my own tears.
I moved away from the door and ran towards my room. It was difficult to see anything, only the moonlight occupied the darkness.
Before I pushed open the creaking door, the gentle breathing of my brother began to fade and became one quick screech before it stopped completely; it was like a dagger piercing through my heavily beating heart. It was happening again.
I couldn’t sleep that night from the gentle screaming whirling down the halls. My eyes were receding into minute black holes from the lack of sleep that was caused by the surprise I found that very morning and the night before that, and the night before that …

The next morning, the sea growled hungrily and bit the shore in bite size pieces before it broke off into huge chunks. My house was on the edge of a cliff, at a danger of falling in sooner or later from the destructive waves of the crying sea.
As I scooped up the cereal in my bowl swimming with milk, I let it fall back in like a small waterfall from my spoon. The spoon unhappily made a clink-clonk sound as it scraped against the glass bowl. I was angry with myself. My sister was walking around the kitchen behind me, cleaning the dishes.
My sister had a wide waist, which made it difficult to squeeze past her when you wanted something from the kitchen. She has a gentle, calming face like a face on a doctor.
“What have I said about not eating? You’ll waste away, you will! Just like your father and your anorexic cousin In Staffordshire!” My sister moaned with her back to me.
“He said he was dying, doesn’t that have any effect on you?” I whispered.
“What did you say?” my sister said as the squeaking sound of the cloth against the dishes ceased.
I stood up angrily, “He said he was dying!” I flung the chair across the room and leant against the table, my head in my hands. The chair smashed against the wall and the legs snapped off instantly, “You were there when he rang us! I can’t eat or sleep thinking about it! His inner organs are failing, mother! He’s your nephew! He’s your nephew! You are heartless!” I screamed.
“There are more important matters to deal with; your brother is in hospital because he had an asthma attack again, doesn’t that have any effect on you?” My sister moved towards me, her piercing eyes carefully watched me like the eyes of a shark or a cunning eagle.
“Don’t play pity with me, Hailey! You deserve what father did to you! Death is NOT a laughing matter!” I screamed as I ran to the phone and pulled it off its receiver and hugged it crazily, “What’s his number?”
“It is when it comes to something like this! I may not have known Drake my whole life but I know he didn’t have organ problems as a baby! This is all a hopeless, heartless lie to gain attention!” my sister stamped towards me and struck me across the face before attempting to swipe the phone from my sweating hands.
“No, no! It’s mine! You deserve to rot in Hell, Hailey!” I snapped as I struggled from her grip and sprinted towards the staircase.
“It’s a lie! He’s messing with your mind!” my sister snapped.
“Yeah, right, of course it is! How do you know that, hmm? How do you know that?” I ran up the stairs and my Mother was only a step behind me, “Leave me alone!”
“Mummy, why are you shouting at Sister Carrie?” Riley looked bewildered, standing there in shock. An expressionless face looked up the stairs at us. At the sound of his voice, we stopped fighting.
We stared at him in confusion. Then Aunt Nicole came in and we were no longer bewildered. My hands were on mother’s stomach, trying to push her away and showing my hate towards the baby that was half hers and half someone else’s at the clinic. Her hands were in my hair, trying to pull it down the stairs, which would take control of me and leave me in a lot of pain. We were frozen in place.
“Brought him home, the doctors said he was perfectly alright and supplied him with a new inhaler. They said that there wouldn’t be another attack for quite some time. Hopefully, that applies to both physical attacks between you and Carrie,” Aunt Nicole looked up at my sister, “and asthma attacks for Riley.”
Riley smiled gleefully and was standing up perfectly. But, as that thought came into my mind, Riley fell into a crawl, which made me silently giggle, unnoticed by Nicole and my sister.
“I spoke to the neighbours and they are desperate to have a baby but are moving to another country, I don’t know if that will affect you at all?” Nicole asked.
My sister let go of my hair and I sighed in relief as she ‘sprinted’ down the stairs, carelessly taking two steps at a time. “Oh, I’ll think about it.”
“The baby is born tomorrow; you do know that, don’t you?” Nicole asked sarcastically.
“Of course I do! I’m the mother, I should know!” My sister snapped angrily.
“Why do you wanna give the baby away, anyway?” I asked, biting my lower lip and taking one step up the stairs. I hated the baby so much and was looking forward to its disappearance.
“Because, Carrie, I can’t provide for it! We have no money! You just have to look around to see that!” My sister snapped, she was stressed. She threw herself onto the sofa. My sister seemed older than she was, she is only nineteen and I’m nine, which says that she had me at the age of fourteen. But now, she’s pregnant again.
I looked down at the phone clutched in my folded arms. Before I ring Drake, I must ring someone else for evidence. I flipped the phone over and began to dial …

In the EAST
Drake Carter

After my tiring journey back home, the town was cleared up by the fire department as the seeping lava had forgotten the town and slowly died away, freezing into a sticky mound all over the confounded town.
I instantly dug into my pocket and brought out my mobile phone, giving each number I typed a distinct, individual push.
The phone rang.
The phone rang again.
The phone rang a third time.
Tess answered.
“H-hello? I’m busy!” Tess said peevishly.
“Hey, Tess … it’s Drake … we haven’t spoken in a while – can I see you some day this week?”
“Tess, hang up! It feels weird kissing you when you don’t try.”
“Who was that?” I asked, angrily.
“Oh, that was … don’t worry about it … I …”
“Yeah, got it!” I exclaimed and hung up the phone. After that conversation, after my heart was demolished, I began to have a strong urge for chocolate.

After this conversation, my depression was the opposite way around: I ate too much instead of ignoring it! This led to my obesity two years later! This increased depression.

As I ran through the door, relieved to be ‘home’ (the orphanage that I had ran to), I heard the phone crying from upstairs. I ran up the stairs and barged through room #1: my room. I carelessly took the crying phone out of its sleeping chamber and placed it to my ear. Everyone else in the orphanage was in his or her own rooms.
“You’re a sick, disgusting low-life!” A girl’s voice snapped.
I pulled the phone away from my ear and stared at it in confusion before placing it back to my ear.
“What’s wrong with you?” I said. I knew it was Carrie.
“Get lost you disgusting, horrible freak!” Carrie snapped.
“If you wanted me to get lost, why ring here?”
“Shut up you pathetic piece of dirt!” Carrie’s words were like daggers.
“This sounds like Carrie but she wouldn’t say things like this.” I said.
“Well, maybe I’ve changed! Go crawl in a corner and die you piece of low-life!”
“Gladly … what has come over you?”
After some hesitation, she spoke.
“You know … you fat freak!”
“Did you just say ‘f-fat’?” I whispered shakily.
“Oh no, the anorexic freak is worrying over his weight again!”
“You’re not Carrie! Leave me alone! It’s my Granddad’s funeral today, so leave me alone!”
“Of course it is, and it’s the anniversary of my pet alien’s death, isn’t it! You just can’t tell the truth!” I couldn’t see Carrie but I knew she was rolling her eyes sarcastically.
“How is your appendix?” I asked shakily.
“I have to go hospital daily! Do you know why?”
“No, I don’t.” I whispered. I was afraid of the answer.
“It’s because a disgusting boy who I thought I could trust rang me up last week telling me that he was dying! I couldn’t eat or sleep and ever since that, my appendix has been as if it’s on fire!”
I couldn’t speak. My voice had disappeared within me. All I could do was gasp. Never eating or sleeping would not result in an appendix removal (I should know).
“Please don’t tell Cry, …” I muttered. Cry is her other cousin other than me but is luckily not related to me.
“Too late, you’re dead. Goodbye liar!” She hung up. At that moment, there was a very loud constant banging on the windows. I was alone … but not for long …

South Chlorine Hospital
Hailey Stanza
The day after …

Breathe in … breathe out. Breathe in … breathe out. Breathe in … breathe out. I was screaming. The pain was unimaginable.

Twelve hours later, the doctor brought over a small healthy baby boy who was as still as a statue.
“Shouldn’t he be crying?” I was so tired to say more than that but I forced words, even if I risk passing out.
“I thought that too. Maybe he’s happy.” The doctor replied as he placed the baby in a bundle of blankets in my arms.
“Oh my God, he’s so amazing. He looks a lot like me, this time. He’s so beautiful.” I kissed my baby’s forehead and rocked him back and forth.
“That’s not good for the baby,” the doctor said.
“Oh …” I stopped rocking him and glared into his watering eyes gleefully.
The door creaked open and in walked a woman.
“Ah, my baby is born!” the woman smiled and walked over to me. I stared at her in confusion. Following her was Nicole.
“Oh, he’s lovely, isn’t he?” Nicole whispered, stroking his cheek as he sneezed.
“It is nice,” the woman said.
“Did she just call my baby an ‘it’?” I said to Nicole through clenched teeth.
“This is Mrs Calorie; she is a married woman who will be happy to take the baby away from you. You will get to live in her old house when she leaves the country. I find this an amazing deal. Just hand over the baby, simple as that.”
“Nicole, it isn’t simple! I’ve just given birth to a beautiful baby and I want to keep him!” I said angrily though clenched teeth, “you’re my sister, be supportive!”
“We made a deal nine months ago!” Nicole said, “But I had to get you drunk first before you could say yes.”
“Why do you want her to have the baby so much?” I said angrily.
“I don’t want the baby to die …” Nicole said.
“What did you say?” I snapped with anger.
“Forget it, Hailey. You’re pathetic. You don’t keep to your promises.”
“Just take him, then! Take all I have left away from me!” I pushed the baby into the smirking Mrs Calorie’s arms.
“You have Carrie.” Nicole said as she smiled at the doctor who smiled back at her.
“No, I don’t. She has lung cancer from the constant smoking I did when she was young. She doesn’t have long to live, really. Sooner or later, she’ll lose a lot of weight and waste away which is why I’m concerned about her eating, drastic Drake made sure of that! So … give me back my baby.” I was weeping.
“You reek of poverty so I think it would be better if she came with me. It least then she will live.” Mrs Calorie said with her head raised and her gait was slow and formal.
“My baby is a male, not a female, you crazy woman!” I snapped, my arms outstretched, trying to grab my baby. Nicole was holding me back, making sure I didn’t grab the baby as Mrs Calorie walked quickly out of the room. Every step she took was a sharper dagger that lunged into my stomach. I was dead inside once again.
“Where’s the father of the baby?” the doctor asked as he turned away from his paperwork, only glancing up to smile at Nicole.
“He’s … he’s … dead.” I whispered before pulling my blanket to my face and weeping violently. The doctor scribbled down something on his paperwork.
“Have you decided on a name?”
“I probably wont be the one naming him, that horrible woman will. But, call him Michael on the paperwork – just for me.” I whispered slowly.
I caught the final glance of his small, button nose and his twinkling, blue eyes. His chubby arms reached out, as if trying to grasp air and pull himself back to me. His dark brown hair was topped on his head sprawled all over the place, somehow like spaghetti in some sense. He half smiled at me before the door was closed, squeaking through the air and hitting the frame with a sudden ‘BANG’. That ‘BANG’ ended my life completely …

Nine months ago …

“Pregnant, did you hear me, Michael? I’m foolishly pregnant!” I wept into my hands. I was on my knees, tugging at the end of his shirt, begging desperately for his care.
“What do you expect me to do about it? I’m gonna see a movie with my girlfriend soon so I have better things to worry about than a woman four years older than me!” Michael snapped vigorously.
“This is your son in here!” I poked my stomach forcefully, and then rubbed it from the pain, “You should care about him!”
“I don’t want a child with you; the only person I want to have a child with is Kathy – the love of my life, which is why … why I want to spend the rest of my life with her.” Michael smiled so widely that it looked as if it would break from his face, “I love her. Nothing can come between that, not death, not anyone, and especially a woman who is on her knees begging for me to help her with pregnancy!” Michael kicked me away and the carpet, soaking up my tears, drowned my face. I screamed which only caused Michael to back away even further.
“Think of the baby! It will become ravenous without you! It will waste away!” I screamed into the carpet.
“Give the baby away! There are loads of people who would love to adopt a child!” Michael snapped as he took one more step closer to the door.
“Just you wait, you’ll realise how guilty you are and you’ll come crawling back!” I screamed.
“Don’t count on it, I want to be with Kathy, and that’s all I can say.” Michael stormed out of the room and sprinted through the desolateness of the poorly decorated house towards the door. The only chance of the baby’s survival walked out the door.

William Stanza
Present day

I scribbled down on my notepad as I sit beside the sea. I planned my revenge on my wife – we never had a divorce. What she did to me was out of order and has ruined my life ever since.
As people went by, I glared at them angrily. My eyes were fixed on the pen that was scribbling the words.
Behind me was a large cliff, eaten away and deposited as a wave-cut platform. I stared up to the top where I saw the house creaking: the house that belonged to my wife who was now grieving from the loss of her baby.
The sea fiercely beat against the cliff and huge mounds of rock fell into the water. There was a huge peak sticking out over the water where her house sat and a big dip is in the base of the cliff.
I was sitting on a bench on the other side of the beach and continued to scribble down notes. The acid I emptied illegally into the sea was completing its job perfectly.
Suddenly, there was a lurching, crunching sound and a feint creaking. I jerked my head upwards and smirked as I spotted what was occurring. The house was crumbling into pieces as the peak on the cliff edge broke down and soared down to the sea. The plan I was scribbling on my pad had already occurred without any other actions of my own … the smirk on my face increased in length.


/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I was rescued by a helicopter ambulance and taken to hospital to sooth my burns. It was a relief to be finally free of the lava eating my skin away constantly.
Everything in my life seemed to be dying away, fading into the intermitting darkness of the daily furniture of my life.
I pressed my quivering hand against my chest and felt Michael’s beating heart – pumping blood. He had kept me alive, sacrificing his own solemn heart. I could feel something, instead of blood. It was his spirit … leading me the way throughout my lonely life. His spirit would first travel through my arteries, then through my crying capillaries to give blood to all the cells in my body, and then it would travel back to the heart through my venomous veins that had numerous scars all over … purposely.
I listened carefully to the beats … one … two … three … then it would strangely stop. There would be a sickening pause of three to five seconds before it continued again. I breathed in and out, in and out, like waves travelling to my lungs. I was drained of energy, so I was begging for respiration to occur to provide energy for me. Yet, the peculiar thing was, I wasn’t doing serious exercise but somehow anaerobic respiration was occurring: glucose was being converted into lactic acid, which caused my muscles to hurt and ache.
Systolic pressure was also happening, and then diastolic pressure would take its place. The difference between them is that systolic is when the heart contracts and diastolic is when the heart relaxes. I loathed systolic pressure; I always think of it as Michael being squashed under pressure – it is his heart, after all.
I stared out of the window of the hospital; this place seemed like home in some sense. It had been the place I had visited the most in my life – even more than occasional visits to my relatives! (Not my parents, I’d NEVER speak to them again after how they hurt me and affected my mentality as a child, although, I do write to them to describe what is happening in my life, just like now.)

Dear abusers, (this was the popular word to describe my parents in almost every letter)
I am writing, once again, to inform you that I am alive and well, despite the affects the volcanic eruption had on me.
I still think about you both, don’t get your hopes up because when I think of you both, I think of hate. One day, you will see me again, either on the street walking by after leaving my very successful job which I will have very soon, or possibly in a coffin as I finally escape the disrespectfulness of life and its disastrous consequences which I have learnt ever since I was born and you looked down at me in disgust.
Tomorrow is my husband’s funeral. You never met him, but if you did, you would have realised how lucky I was, that without him in my life I would be the one whose funeral begins tomorrow. He has made me live, which I am half thankful for, partly because I would love to be where he is. As horrid as this may sound, I believe this is the only way to escape … everything.
I am now in hospital from the affects of the volcano. I hope that you DON’T visit me, well, how would you? You don’t even know the name of the hospital!
Do not write back, all I do with your unopened letters is put them in a pile in the basement of the hospital. How else would I deal with them? Burning them has become an option but I can’t do that with loads of ill patients here, can I?
I will treasure you both deep in my heart – the place in my heart where everything is dismissed with disgust, that is!
One thing I do hope is that you attend Michael’s funeral tomorrow, if this letter reaches you in time.
Hoping to have a better life,
Yours faithfully,
Kathy … x …

A man cleaning windows was on a machine, which enabled him to go as high or low on the outside of buildings. The name of the machine had passed my mind.
I stared down at the red post-box below; it was a dot from this distance. A man wearing a blue shirt and holding a large bag walked toward the post-box, whistling.
“Mister Famish! Mister Famish!” I shouted. The postman looked up and looked as if he was smiling. I dropped the letter and relied on the evening breeze to take it there.
The letter fluttered and span until it reached Mr Famish’s hand. He unlocked the post-box and emptied its contents, not only finding letters within. Cans and sticks poured out, including cigarettes, which in Mister Famish’s part luckily did not set the letters alight. If this occurred, he’d lose his job surely.
Mister Famish then threw the letters into the bag and examined one; a bewildered look was glued on his face. He called my name up to me before passing an envelope to the man cleaning the hospital windows (who was cleaning the ground floor windows), after having a conversation with him that I could not hear. The man’s machine rose higher and higher until it reached my window. He frowned at me before passing me the letter; he then pressed a button on his machine that made him scale downwards. I examined the letter in awe. The name on the front showing whom it was from caused me to gasp. I read the letter aloud to myself:

Dear my darling Kathy,
As I am writing this letter, you are deep in sleep and every moment I watch you my heart – soon to be your heart – beats like a thousand drums that are desperate to be destroyed.
I persuaded the doctors to put you asleep first, so that I could write this. The reason I am writing this letter is to show you how much I love you because without you I’d be nothing.
On my wedding day, I promised to love you until death parts us. That day is today, but I will love you every second of everyday after this, if that is possible, if it isn’t I will make it possible because nothing in the world is more important than you.
Everyday I will love you, everyday I will miss you, and everyday you will keep my heart. I will watch you from heaven as you make your life decisions; I will make sure that you come to no harm and I will find a way to stop your suicidal thoughts.
The doctor said the operation would be difficult, because as you know, you are carrying my baby. The baby miraculously survived, as I was told. But after that, my mind became a blank from the prickling feeling in my left vein and sooner before I realised the liquid running in my blood overwhelmed me.
The operation was risky, as we were warned. But, does it matter? I need to keep you alive for what event I have planned for you in the future, if this is possible and I hope it is.
Before I die, I need to tell you something, something important: before we were married, I had a child with Drake’s cousin. Drake never found out who the father was and if he did, I would be dead either way! I hope you can put this behind you and forget how I betrayed you – luckily; I can’t get verbally abused by you because I will be perished by the time you read this!
I need you to do something for me, only one significant thing: I want you to look after both children … my children … and make sure they survive.
Hailey is poor and has no job; the baby will not survive under those conditions. I NEED you to adopt my child and care for him and care for the one developing in you as you read this …
Remember: I will love you for eternity: as long as I shall … (I would say ‘live’ but it would be a biased thing to say.)
Yours truly,
Your husband,
P.S. I love you xxx

I was overwhelmed by rage. I tore the letter in half and let the wind be its destiny. I struck the lighter out of my pocket and lit the two halves alight, watching the twisting flames. I threw it out of the window and watched the illuminating pieces of paper as they floated down to the floor.
The two halves of that letter … deserve to be in HELL!
I hated Michael. I hated the image of him. I hated his cheating, lying heart. I punched my chest, attempting to somehow damage his heart.
I hate your heart. I hate everything about you! Why won’t you make your heart stop!
I hammered my heart, thinking of the ways I must kill it and myself. I should cut it off its tracks by bursting my veins, or I could stab it until Michael feels that pain in Hell.
“I hate you! I hate you! Why … would … you … do … this … to … me!” I wept into my hands.
I stared into the sky and looked carefully at the formation of the clouds: I could see a face. The dark clouds full of rain represented cropped hair on the head. Two clouds with holes in the middle represented eyes and the right eye’s hole that represented the pupil, began to close, as if it was winking. A long, thin cloud represented a curved smile that looked disturbing and a dark cloud was in the middle of the ‘face’ to represent a minute nose. The face looked so familiar. Then it hit me who it was.
The door squeaked open. In walked the nurse …
“Look, nurse! It’s my husband! He’s there!” I screamed angrily.
The nurse sniffed the air, “Has something been burning in here, Kathy?”
“Look, Nurse! It’s Michael! I hate that cheating, lying …” I screeched through clenched teeth.
“Listen, Kathy. You need to control your rage, that’s one reason why you are here.” The Nurse moved over to the chair next to my bed and threw herself into it.
“No, I’m only here because of the burns and look –“I said.
“Kathy, you’re imagining things again.”
“Would you please listen to me?” I snapped, throwing myself onto my bed, “Isn’t that what nurses are supposed to do!”
“I’m a nurse who listens to her patients, yes. I try and alter their problems and make them sane again.”
“Sane? I am sane!” I screamed at her.
“No, you’re not, Kathy. Do you remember why you were sent here? You went to the medical hospital about your burns but the doctors recommended you come here, remember?” The nurse spoke softly yet sharply.
“You’re not making any sense! Why am I here?”
“You keep trying to convince people that your husband is still alive.”
“But, he … is, isn’t he? I can see him everywhere. I saw him in the sky, today. He’s alive within me. Here.” I patted my chest to show the nurse he was living in his heart.
“Listen to yourself, you’re going insane!” the nurse moaned.
I scrunched up my fists and my left eye began to twitch.
“Look, I have a picture of him I took!” I pulled out a picture of Michael that I used to treasure until this day.
I threw the picture at the nurse and she caught it and examined it. She didn’t look impressed.
“There is no one on this picture, Kathy. It is a picture of a group of trees.”
“What did you say? Let me have a look!” I got up off the bed and snatched it away from the nurse, giving her a paper cut that caused her to retaliate away from me.
I examined the picture and I saw Michael smiling and how thin and tall he was. He was happy.
“Nurse, you’re the crazy one! Michael is here!”
“He gave you his heart, remember?” The nurse said, near to a whisper. Maybe it wasn’t near to a whisper, but because my ears were ringing so much, it sounded like that.
“Of course I remember which is why I want his heart to stop beating. To kill him, I must kill myself!” I snapped.
The nurse got out of her seat and waved her hands in front of her, disagreeing. “Don’t do anything drastic, Kathy! If you try, we’ll have to lock you up in that room again. Do you remember how bad it was?”
“Why do you keep asking me if I remember things?” I snapped, running towards the door but the nurse grabbed me in my tracks. “Let me go! Let me go! I don’t want to spend … another … second in this horrible place!” I panted, attempting to free myself from the tight grip of the nurse.
My eyes went wide as I saw him again. His eyes were flashing in a macabre way. My shaking hand pointed at him but he soon faded away in an instant. Maybe I am going insane …
I stopped struggling and just stared in awe. My face was as white as the snow now racing to the ground outside. It was winter, after all.
The nurse led me towards the bed and I lay down, staring up at the ceiling.
“I shall call you when the doctor would like to see you. I’m glad you’re no longer being irrational.” The nurse said. The nurse walked out of the room and the squeaking door closed. I smiled. I leapt towards the window instantly the second the door closed.
I looked down to try and find the window cleaner but he was nowhere in sight. He had gone. My heart sank with disappointment. Next to the window there was another roof nearby which caused me to smile gleefully.
I lifted myself up so I was standing on the windowsill. I gulped before taking a leap towards the other roof. I was halfway between the windowsill and freedom, and just as I was in midair, a voice popped into my swimming mind.
Isn’t it funny, that it feels like déjà vu to me because I’m inside you? You’re escaping the exact same way I escaped the hospital. Isn’t it funny?
Oh, shut up!
I could save you right now, or I could let you fall, which would it be?
Go away, Michael! You’re dead! You can’t talk to me!
Yes, I can. I can control you now. I’m part of you. I’m keeping you alive. But, now that you don’t love me anymore, you don’t deserve to live.
I gasped before I miraculously landed on the other rooftop. I was shouting at Michael in my mind, I know it makes no sense, but I can talk to him. I can see him. Having his heart is a curse within me.
I hate you, Michael. If you can control me, then kill me.
After some hesitation, I heard his voice within me again and saw him with his head down. I began to run across the rooftop towards the edge. I saw him standing on the edge of the roof; he lifted his head up and stared into my watering eyes. I saw the burnt halves of the letter and scooped them up. I pocketed them quickly.
“I can’t.”
“Why can’t you?”
“Because you’re my wife, I can’t kill you.”
“Do you still love me?”
“Yes … Do you love me?”
“I knew that letter was bad idea.”
“Of course it was, but you were telling me the truth for once in your life! You’re turning into Drake!”
“Listen to me, I didn’t mean to betray you.”
“Oh, so it was all an accident, was it?” I snapped at the blurry image of HIM. “You’re not even supposed to be here. You’re dead.”
“Yes, and I can haunt you forever if you don’t love me. Just say that you love me and I’ll be gone.”
“But then I’d be lying.” I moaned.
“Then you’d be like me.”
“I love you.” I whispered.
“You don’t love me!” he whispered shrilly.
“I do. I … love … you.” I gulped.
“You really love me? Why do you love me?”
I shook my head. “Don’t make me answer that.”
“Please … please answer me.”
After some hesitation, I spoke.
“The only reason I said I loved you is because I know you’re not here. I’m hallucinating because of what the medical hospital gave me to calm me down – I think it has hallucination side effects or something. You’re not here. It’s all a hallucination.”
“You could be right. If you are, I’ll only be part of your imagination for another five minutes. Is that right? An hour of hallucinations is usually a side effect?”
“Possibly, I hope it is.” I whispered so quietly that I doubt he heard me.
“Four minutes until I never see you again.” He was smiling.
“I suppose I can tell the truth now. I love-“

The constant, beeping rang out continuously. It was an annoying, hoarse sound that rang through my ears, my eardrums were screaming vigorously!
The urge to switch off the alarm was overwhelming. I reached over and smacked the alarm off.
Was it all a dream? Did it really happen? Did I meet Michael again? I looked around at the room, squinting. My eyelids were begging to close.
I was in the hospital and not a mental hospital, which caused me to smile. It was all a dream.
The doctor walked in.
“Hello, Kathy, you awake?” the doctor chuckled.
“Yes, thank you.” I smiled at him as he opened the beige curtains. I sighed and got out of bed. I was wearing a hospital robe with the words ‘Sir Alfred Chlorine Hospital’ printed across it in numerous places.
“I’m here to tell you that your burns will stay as they are, I’m afraid. However, we do have a cream that you can buy to slowly, gradually heal them.” The doctor smiled and I frowned.
“How much does it cost this time, doctor?” I asked.
“It will cost eighty-nine pounds and fifty pence, please. Would you like to pay before you leave? Or you could just pay now.”
“No … no, I’d like to pay later.”
“Very well.” The doctor sighed disappointedly, “Your clothes are in the closet and can I have your key, please, the key to your room?”
“Yeah, I think it’s in the pocket of these robes.” I dug into my pocket in search of something cold and metal but I found something smooth yet crinkly. It wasn’t cold. It wasn’t metal. It was paper and the outsides of it crumbled in my fingers for some peculiar reason. I pulled it out and gasped in horror. It was the letter.
I spread it out in my hands and began to read.
“Are you okay, Kathy? You look like you’ve just seen a ghost!” the doctor felt my forehead and quickly moved his hand away. “You’re as cold as death.”
“I’m fine, not to worry.” I whispered. I lied to the doctor. My mouth felt dry and Michael’s heart was beating so quick that it could break out from behind my ribs.
“Can I have the key or do you want to give it me later?” the doctor asked.
“Later. I have some business to attend to.” I panted heavily as I spoke.
This experience is exactly like when I discovered how to open the red case that Amethyst gave to me in her Will … Will … Did Michael have a Will? That’s what I’ll have to attend to afterwards. Now, I must go north to pay a special surprise visit to my stepson and take him to a very depressing room.

- Jasmine Jacqueline –

Three months ago, I killed more than one hundred innocent people by abandoning a bomb that I knew would explode. I was in the papers and all over the daily news. I was hated by every citizen and classed as a terrorist.
I escaped, fleeing Staffordshire. No one will ever remember me; I will start a new life and go by a new name. I can never be arrested if I do that.
I walk the streets, searching for a new beginning … in the North. I work as a midwife and I assist other women through the agonising experience of pregnancy. Many women who have been supported by me have recommended me; apparently I am the kindest, sweetest and most honourable midwife out of the community.
I’ve changed my name to Jacqueline Jasmine, which is simply swapping my names around. I prefer the original sounding to my name, not the new one. It makes me sound like I’m unimportant.
I sat at my desk in my new house with three floors. Everything seemed more modern here and I felt like I reflected my own house: modern, accomplished, prepared and superior. I was scribbling down on my paperwork for a woman called Hailey Stanza. Her last name reminded me of a fixed number of verse lines arranged in a definite metrical pattern.
The phone began to ring and I picked up the phone instantly that was beside me.
“Hello, is this Jacqueline?” Hailey asked.
“Yes, it is. Who is this and be quick, I am busy!”
“This is Hailey; could you come over for an hour? I need some help with what is occurring. Someone has come to try and steal my baby!”

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

I hammered against the door, then the windows. Why won’t he answer me?
“Drake, it’s me!” I shouted, banging both fists against the thin windows.
A dog began to bark vigorously, and then howled at the door. The door burst open and the dog jumped onto me, knocking me back. My head hit the gravel and inflicted pain on my skull. I thought I might’ve bounced back up because of all the fat I have – I really hate myself.
Drake came out and pointed a knife at my throat then he realised who it was and threw the knife aside.
“Tess, is that … you?” Drake whimpered, obviously scared.
“No, it’s Santa Claus! Of course it’s me!” I snapped. I used a reference to Santa Claus because he reflects my weight, despite his non-existence.
Drake attempted to lift me up.
“It doesn’t matter; you don’t have any muscles to pick me up! All your muscles went away when you lost all that weight!” I snapped. I lifted myself up and gave Drake a hug.
“Do you f-forgive me?” Drake asked.
“Yes, I suppose I may as well. What I really came here to do though was-“
The dog suddenly became aware of something nearby, it stared at the trees and barked angrily in that direction with its ear propped up to show his vigorous opinion of what was hidden in the woods.
“I thought you were Cry. I guess he’s here.” Drake whispered before dragging the dog inside, “hurry, Tess!”
I quickly rushed towards the door and jumped inside. A bang came from the back door. Drake’s face quickly twisted around towards the back of the house as I slammed the front door shut and locked it.
“Where are they?” I asked.
Drake’s eyes were wide with terror. “I don’t know.”
There was a crash from upstairs that caused me to spin around to look up at the stairs. I moved so fast that I had a head rush.
“What was that?” Drake whimpered before opening the closet under the stairs next to him and pulling out a baseball bat and a toothpick. He gave me the toothpick.
“A toothpick, what’s that gonna do?”
“You’re right … erm …” Drake looked in the closet again and this time pulled out a hat.
“Yeah, giving them a pretty hat is really going to scare them away, isn’t it?” I moaned.
“I see what you mean.” Drake jumped back into the closet and brought out a bug bomb (a can that erupted with smoke when pressure is exerted on the button). He threw it to me and I caught it quickly yet carefully. “Don’t drop it or you’ll poison us.”
“Is there anyone else here?” I asked.
“No, there are no other orphans here. They have all gone to the theatre to ironically watch ‘Oliver Twist.’”
A sadistic chuckle came from the living room and a scratching came from the back door. What on Earth was going on? Another bang came from upstairs; I looked up to see who or what it was. Then I looked back to Drake and he was … gone.
Everything became dark: the electricity no longer existed. Everything was quiet, despite the constant banging upstairs and the sound of glass breaking.
I heard running footsteps and panting. I felt for the walls as my support but only managed to stumble but I quickly caught my footing. I pressed my fingertips against the wall and began to move forward.
“Drake Carter, where are you!” I snapped into the hollowness of the orphanage.
There was movement in the darkness: the shadows were twisting. I carefully examined them before realising that the figure was moving toward me and I could see his angry glare, even in the depressing darkness.
I pressed the button on the bug bomb and a cloud erupted from the nib, sprouting poisonous gases into the atmosphere. It gave off an almost overwhelming, glistening image, like dry, powdered ice coming in contact with water.
The figure retaliated backwards in shock, coughing and spluttering. As he fell back, he slit my face with the knife clasped in his still hand – which represented how confident he was with this!
I dropped the bug bomb and placed my quivering hands on my slit face. My cheek was slit open and if I wanted to, I could pop my tongue out of the slit, which is a disgusting thought!
“Are you Drake Carter?” The voice grumbled angrily.
“No, I’m his friend Tess. Why, what are you doing here?” I asked shakily as he pressed me up against the wall with the knife to my quivering throat.
“We’ve come to kill him.” Now I realise where the sadistic chuckle came from.
“Who’s ‘we’?” I asked.
“If you speak again without me telling you to, I’ll slit your throat!”
I gulped.
“… Good …”
“Deathless, we found Drake!” A shrill whisper came from the back of the orphanage.
“Don’t move an inch, whale woman,” his gravely voice said before he sprinted away out of sight, consumed by the darkness. His words were daggers into my heart.
I sighed with relief before sprinting after them, in search of Drake.
“I said, don’t move an inch, are you deaf?” the gravely, hoarse voice shuddered in the silence.
“I’ll have to get my ears checked out soon then.” I said sarcastically, “Where’s Drake?” I asked the darkness as I reached the backdoor. The sunlight was leaking in through the windows but was blocked by the curtains that looked like they needed seriously cleaning!
I heard the sound of a key turning in a lock from the outside – I was locked in! I dived for the door and hammered against it, trying to break it down. It was no use. I was too weak.
“Let me out! Let me out of here! What are you going to do to Drake?” I screamed.
“Kill him.”
Was that my thoughts? Or did it come from behind? My eyes were wide with terror as I slowly moved around, facing the sound of the voice. It was a shadow, a shadow in the darkness. But, what did the shadow belong to?
It was tall and thin but its arms were huge, which represented he or she had a lot of muscles that could rip me into pieces instantly!
I screamed and saw the figure move his hands to his ears.
“Who-who are y-y-you?” I asked shakily.
“Aren’t the shadows just amazing?”
“W-w-what a-are y-y-you going to do to me and will you hurt me?” I whispered.
“You can only see the outline of me; the darkness has swallowed me while all I can see of you is your shadow. I love shadows, do you?”
“Y-yes,” I was afraid if I’d said ‘no’, he would have killed me, “Why are you here?”
“I’ll kill you if you say another word.”
“That doesn’t count as a word because it is not in the dictionary.”
“If you go on and on like this in front of your gang members, I’m surprised they don’t kill you!” I chuckled.
I looked around and he wasn’t in the same place, he had disappeared. A second later, his hand was on my throat.
“This is why they accept me; my speed is beneficial to them. I can kill someone who is a mile away in three seconds.”
I gulped. Exaggerating wimp!
“Do we have an agreement? You stay quiet while I await orders to kill you or to spare you. I won’t harm you if you don’t harm my eardrums with your screaming.” He whispered sadistically.
I chuckled and he bared his teeth in frustration, like a vicious wolf ready to pounce on and devour its prey. His eyes depicted green sapphires that were thin, angry, menacing slits.
A constant beeping sound rang out and the figure instantly dug into his pocket and pulled out his mobile phone and placed it to his ear.
“Yeah … sure … of course … she’s quiet for now … I’ll kill her if there are any disturbances … yes … take him to where I told you to, okay? … Okay, bye.” He pocketed his mobile phone.
Then his voice altered into a croaky, vigorous pitch that sounded like it had pressure on every word and his glare on me became forceful:
“Now, where can I find Kathy Kimberley?”


“Jasmine, where’s my baby?” Hailey asked vigorously, with a shaky, panicky quivering voice.
“I don’t know … he was right here in his cot a second ago.” Jasmine stifled a yawn, not at all concerned with the disappearance of the baby.
After some hesitation, Hailey replied. Her powerful, forceful, accusing words could be heard throughout the Town Centre and the Church in the centre of the town where a weeping, widowed woman was leaning over a coffin.


“You sure no one else has come?” Kathy asked.
“No, you and the baby are the only ones.” The priest muttered.
“Could you leave me and the baby alone with his father, please? I won’t be long, only a few last requests.” I asked, rocking the baby in my arms.
“Of course, ma’am, I’ll be back soon.” The priest symbolically placed his hands together then departed from the gloomy room.
The coffin was open. Inside laid Michael with his eyes firmly closed. I opened his jacket and saw instantly several scars, one of which resulted in his death. The other scars were caused from gang fights.
The baby boy smiled at me. I grinned back at him as two tears fell off my face and landed on his smile. He seemed frightened by it.
“Hopefully, you won’t grow up to be as messed up as your father.” I chuckled. My eyes drifted over to a book that lay on Michael’s right. It was too thin to be a Bible. I swiped it quickly, the baby in one hand, the book in the other. I opened the first page and splotches of blood were plotted across the paper like on a graph. I turned the next page. The baby watched with anxiety and I could feel his heart race so quickly against my chest – why has his heart rate increased suddenly?
The next page nearly made me collapse after reading the title of this disturbing book. Most of the other pages (mainly the ‘Age 17 and 18’ pages) had been torn out for some reason, which I will soon find out. The title explained why:
‘Michael Winters: age 10 to age 18’
The book was not set out like a diary; it was set out like a memory …

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 18
(Before the transplant [age 19] – after the drunken murder [age 18])

My mobile phone rang out and I quickly scooped it up out of my pocket, pressing the green button immediately.
“Hi, is that Michael?”
“Hey, Kathy,” I moaned, “You alright?”
“No, not without you I’m not. Can you come to the hotel? I have something to tell you: something really important.”
“Cant it wait? I have something really important to do.” I said, sympathetically.
Kathy sighed angrily.
“Sorry, can’t I catch up with you later? This is way more important than what you are going to tell me.”
“Is it? Is it really?” Kathy said through clenched teeth, “What were we talking about yesterday?”
“I can’t remember.” I said, after some hesitation.
I continued walking down the road; the sounds of traffic were irritating. I had to dodge by every car that was behind me, beeping constantly on the car horn to force me off the road. The annoying horn was like a threat to pressure me onto the path.
“Michael! It was really important!”
“Oh well.”
“No problem.”
Kathy hung up on me.
“Hello? I’m sorry!” I sighed in frustration and shut off my phone, throwing it forcefully to the floor in anger. A spark ignited and pieces of plastic and glass flung into the air.
I began to run, pumping my arms at my sides at an incredible, paced speed. I shot down the road with a stern, angry expression on my face.
A car was moving toward me at seventy miles per hour. It was moving closer … closer … closer.
The driver was eating and looking out of the window; he didn’t notice he was about to crush the bones of a teenage boy on his way to a certain someone. He had his mobile phone in one hand and a burger in the other. Sauce had fell into his lap and he looked down at it, wiping it off, his eyes still not paying any attention whatsoever to the road.
I did not gasp. I did not flinch. I did not close my eyes and wait for death. I jumped onto the windscreen of the car and the driver lost control of the wheel. The car was spinning uncontrollably, toward the lamppost that would kill us. I attempted to keep my balance before I dived onto the top of the car and crawled off the back. I landed safely onto the road; however, the driver did not come to a safe ending.
The car hammered into the lamppost and the thin, metal body of the lamppost cut through the front of the car and smashed the windscreen. The car alarm erupted and overtook the sound of the rubber tyres skidding across the road: friction.
I ran swiftly onto the path and turned a corner. The houses went by in a sickening flash that made me nauseous.
I finally came to the house I’d been searching for, it was in the centre of the dark, depressing alleyway. The alleyway had a strong, sickening scent of sewage mixed with the agonising aroma of cigarette smoke; I could almost taste the carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide.
The house was in poor quality: the roof was made of wood and it had three missing planks, the windows were smashed and not a single blade of glass was stuck to the frame, outside was tall grass and three exceedingly tall and wide trees and there were enough insects fluttering in the air that you could call this place a jungle.
I ran through the tall grass and weeds and water gradually filled up in my shoes, giving a squelching sound. I finally reached the black door that was once white and knocked (my fist was covered in a green slime afterwards!).
A dog barked and the door opened. Hailey stood there, smiling. She was dressed in rags that reeked.
“Michael! Oh, I’m so happy you came!” she was gleaming.
“Yeah, so am I.” I smiled back at her.
“Do you remember our conversation yesterday?”
“Yeah, I do.” The length of my smile increased.
“It was really important.”
I frowned. “Careful, you’re starting to sound like Kathy.”
“Have you told her yet?”
“No, I don’t know if I should.”
“If you don’t soon, I’ll break up with you.”
“I’ll tell her as soon as I can! Don’t break up with me, please!” I begged and got down to my knees and put my hands together, as if in prayer.
“Good. Now, do you want to come in?”
“Of course I do!” I smiled wide again and she gestured I come in with her hands. I happily strolled inside …

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 18
(Before the birth [Michael was deceased before the birth] – after the visit [age 18 – Michael’s maturity])

“Michael Winters, how could you visit her?” Mother snapped vigorously as I searched the kitchen cupboards for food.
“What did you say? What’s wrong with Hailey?” I snapped, pulling a china cup out of the highest cupboard.
“She’s as poor as someone living on the street! I don’t want you seeing someone like that, why can’t you stay with darling Kathy?” Mother stormed toward me and snatched the china cup out of my shaking hand, “Oh no you don’t you are not wasting my china cups! After your hands have been near Hailey, I don’t want you touching anything expensive.”
I was in shock, my face was as pale as the china cup and my mouth was in the shape of a dramatic, comical ‘O’. If I still had the china cup, I’d have thrown it at mother.
“YOU HORRID WOMAN, HOW COULD YOU BE SO PREJUDICE?” I shouted and my father stamped his foot on the floor from his study room above the kitchen, to shut us up.
“You even smell of her!” Mother snapped.
I was washing my hands because my mother had had an angry glare on my hands for a while now, thinking that they were filthy after being in my other girlfriend’s house.
I snapped at her … I couldn’t take it anymore. I got a handful of water cupped in my palm and threw it at my twisted mother’s face with my teeth bared.
“I hate you! How could you judge her differently! She’s equal to everyone else! Only because she’s as poor as your sister, doesn’t make her unequal to everyone else!” I snapped.
Father stamped his foot on the floorboards again. “Stop fighting; don’t make me come down there!”
“You freak! How could you like someone like that? I know what’s best for you. Don’t ruin your life like this. What about that Kathy girl? She’s nice, she’s a little shabby and messed up but you can have a decent wedding day …” Mother snapped.
“Don’t judge someone without knowing them first! I’ll bring her here tomorrow so you can get to know her!”
“If you bring her here, I will not allow you to live here anymore!” Mother snapped. “First you take the wrong path and go to West Park which I told you never to go near and I trusted you, now you want to go out with a girl who rummages in dust bins for food!”
“YOU ARE SO PREJUDICE! I HATE PREJUDICE PEOPLE WHO THINK THEY CAN DISCRIMINATE AGAINST PEOPLE LIKE THAT! You’re a terrible mother!” I snapped. “’Prejudice’? ‘Discriminate’? What’s wrong with me?” Since when did I say smart words like that?
“Get out of my house!” Mother snapped.
“You’re being irrational.”
“Get out of my house!”
“Mum, I live here!”
“Get out of my house!”
“Fine, I’ll live with grandma for a while until you realise that you are a horrible, prejudice person who deserves to die for saying those discriminating things!” I vigorously grabbed some food from the cupboard as I spoke and shoved it into my pocket, racing into my room to pack my things. I was shaking. I’ve never felt so … so … alive.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 17
(Before living with his grandparents [age 18] – after his 17th birthday)

“If you insult Tess again, I’ll beat your head in!” I snapped over at my shaking friend: Drake. I gave him an angry glare then realised that I’d scared him and quickly shook it away.
“Michael, have you ever thought of marriage?” Chelsea asked when her arm was linked to mine.
“What on Earth did you just say?” I exclaimed.
“Marriage … have you ever thought of getting married with lots of little kids?”
“No, of course I haven’t.” I moaned, giving her a confounded look with wide, terrified eyes.
“Where is this relationship going, exactly? Tell me that, Michael!” Chelsea broke the link our arms had to put her hands on her hips. Why do girls always do that when they want to talk about something serious?
“Erm … can’t we just stay as we are? Linking arms and kissing sounds good to me.”
“To me it sounds too slow: we’ve been going out for six months and that’s all we’ve done!” Chelsea snapped.
“I’ll wait for you guys over at the park; I think you two have some sorting out to do. I’ll be crying about my failed relationship at West Park if you need me.” Drake said before walking away toward the swings.
“I’m scared of commitment. Babe, calm down.” I said, backing away from her.
“Oh, shut up! You’re pathetic!” Chelsea snapped. She strolled over to Tess who was moaning about how embarrassed she was from Drake’s pathetic weeping. They are all a bunch of wimps, especially Chelsea.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 16
(Before everything that went wrong in my life [age 11 onwards] – after the chase on the streets)

I gathered the papers, the desperate notes and the photographs. I examined all of them and then I swiped a fountain pen from a shop and began to write …
I wrote everything … everything … everything that had gone wrong in my life. All these bad events fell out of me onto this paper, like the words were parts of me breaking away onto this depression absorbent paper.
I have written on twenty pages so far, I write so fast when I know what to write about. Everything is being written down, and I do mean everything.
It took me three hours to write down everything in my life depicted on this pile of paper. I was sitting at the desk of my home the pen’s point was scratching the wood of the desk.
“Are you trying to ruin your desk? Dear God, Michael! I can’t concentrate with your pen scratching annoyingly!” Dad exclaimed from downstairs.
“Sorry, Dad, I’ll be quiet.” I whispered so that he couldn’t hear me: when I apologise, I never mean it!
It took me five hours until I finally finished writing it all down. I slowly reached into my open pocket and brought out a lighter, which I struck several times before it finally sparked. I placed it on the pile of papers and lifted it all up – it was reasonably heavy! – And threw it all into my metal bin. I picked up the lighter and struck a flame and sliced the flame in an ‘X’ shape across the first page. Flames ignited.
I watched all my problems drift away. In every ash was a problem: the bigger the ash, the bigger the problem. They all drifted away with ink from a fountain pen to guide them.
I stared at individual ashes and saw a nightmare suddenly throw itself at me.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 15
(Before I became friends with North Shot [age 16] – after I became friends with the DMC [age 17])

It was a chilly, spring afternoon where the trees were buried in frost. Everything that usually occurs in Spring were beginning to develop: the birds in the trees tweeting, animals coming out of their everlasting hibernation, the orange sun against my face and the welcoming scent of opening flowers.
“I hate this mud, it’s so thick! Your shoes get eaten by it!” Kathy said.
“No, it isn’t. It’s just you ‘cause you’re wearing high heals when we told you to wear boots!” Drake moaned.
We all trudged through the thick mounds of watery mud. My shoes squelched against it and sucked my left shoe off several times.
“For God’s sake, Drake, stop staring at me!” Tess moaned as we moved onwards.
“You look nice today, very nice.” Drake smirked while he moved his eyes up and down Tess.
“Stop it; I can feel your eyes burning me!” Tess laughed.
“You two are sweet, why don’t you just go out with each other!” I suggested.
“Yeah, sure, I’d really want to go out with that!” Drake and Tess said in unison.
“What’s that supposed to mean?” They said in unison, again.
Kathy, Jasmine and Sarah laughed. I simply chuckled.
“Do you, Drake Carter, take Tess Calamber, to be your lawfully wedded wife?” I asked them, laughing hysterically.
“Ha. Ha. Ha.” Drake moaned sarcastically.
“Michael, you’re immature.” Tess moaned.
“I bet you want Drake as much as he wants you.” I giggled.
“I think I saw them kissing yesterday bear the shops – with tongues!” Jasmine giggled.
“You liar, they weren’t at the shops yesterday!” I exclaimed with venom in my words, my anger was building up. Doing that is out of order,
“Can you not say that word, please? It really stabs at me.” Drake stared down, frowning.
“What word?” Sarah whispered. Sarah was at the back of us all, trailing behind like an outcast; Drake was in front of her, scowling at me; Kathy was along the side of Drake, scrunching up her nose when she stared at the mud; Jasmine was holding a small, makeup mirror in front of her, examining herself and smiling, whispering words under her breath; (I caught one word she said, which was: ‘you are so amazing, you deserve a medal for the prettiest face.’) Tess was in front of Jasmine and several times on the way here, Jasmine moaned about Tess’ huge body blocking the sun and I was in front of them all.
“‘Liar’” Kathy said.
“Oi, what did I just say?” Drake snapped.
We came to a tunnel buried in graffiti and smoke stains where previous fires have been started under the tunnel.
“Damn it, I hate this. They’ve copied our names again!” I snapped angrily, my menacing voice echoing in the tunnel. On the walls of the small tunnel were the spray painted words: ‘North Shot’ and ‘N.S’ and on the ceiling were the words: ‘Die DMC’ in red, orange and yellow in a vibrant mix. Some disgusting pictures were in disgusting colours: the colours reflected their horrendous meaning. The word that irritated me was: ‘BLAZE’ which was sprayed in black and orange around the edges of the letters.
I hate this: the way they burn and drink (alcohol) and attack and smoke. But what annoys me the most is the incompetent way they find it funny to go on drunken rampages daily, slaughtering any innocent trespassers and managing to get away with it!
“Gross! Look at that!” Sarah exclaimed when she spotted the pile of old newspapers that were stuck together like a pile of cement. The disturbing thing was the macabre smell that was caused by the disgusting way the newspapers were stuck together.
“What are they stuck together by, it wreaks! There are so many cans of beer down here to fill a whole two-story house!” Kathy moaned, kicking a pile of cans, they made a clink-clonk sound as they smacked against the all and some of their contents came pouring out.
“I hope that’s beer pouring out of there.” Drake said.
“Of course it is, freak!” Tess moaned.
“Hey, don’t call me that you whale!” Drake exclaimed.
Tess gasped.
“Drake, I know you’re depressed that your dad died but you have to control it like anything else like life. If you don’t control it, you die.” I said.
“Have you seen this? It’s like it’s a wall!” Tess moaned, kicking the pile of newspapers and it left a small dent.
“Let me try.” Drake took my place and began kicking the pile vigorously and angrily, knocking old newspapers everywhere, “Ewe! This stuff is disgusting!” Sarah complained.
I lifted the top of my shirt over my nose.
“Calm down, Drake!” I moaned, “You’re gonna break your toes!”
“Ouch, I actually think I’ve broke my toe.” Drake began coughing vigorously and I noticed a splotch of red liquid on the pavement: BLOOD!
Everyone crowded around it and gasped. Everyone’s eyes were wide with terror.
“Sick!” Jasmine snapped.
“Like I said, you are an anorexic freak!” Tess snapped at Drake like he was dirt.
“Oh my,” Sarah’s mouth was in the shape of a dramatic, comical ‘O’.
“Damn, Drake! This happens when you don’t eat!” I snapped through clenched teeth.
“Oh … Drake.” Kathy walked over to Drake and gave him a hug, kissing him on the cheek. He smiled gleefully. Tess’ eyes became thin angry slits; she pulled a face of discomfort at me and gestured towards Drake and Kathy. I smiled back at Tess and she smiled at me – I trust her.
“Thanks. I hate this.” Drake whispered then continued kicking the pile of newspapers.
Layer after layer flew off, revealing so far a bad smell from the rotting paper.
“What do you think is under all that?” Kathy asked.
We had all gathered around Drake as he kicked and kicked the soft layers of newspaper. No one offered to help him.
“Drake, if you really want something, the pulse and power of everything in existence conspires to help you achieve it.” I said to him as he worked hard.
“I bet there’s money under there!” Tess suggested, smiling.
“I bet there’s disgusting things under there.” Sarah was repelled by the pile of newspapers and began to write on the walls with a permanent marker she had in her pocket, writing DMC several times in different ways over the N.S logo.
“Ouch!” Drake exclaimed. All you could hear was ‘thump’, ‘thump’ over and over again, “there’s not much of it left now, but my nose feels like it’s going to fall off! The smell of this is killing me!”
“Then don’t kick it then!” Sarah moaned.
“We don’t want your anorexic toes falling off, now do we? Well, I do because you deserve it!”
Drake stopped kicking. “I’ll kiss you if you don’t stop being horrible.”
“Oh, well you are disgusting! You are … horrible! I … hate you! Erm … do I get my kiss yet?” Tess whispered.
Everyone laughed hysterically. Drake smirked happily, he then stopped kicking the pile of newspapers and ran over to Tess, wrapping his arms around her and pressing his lips against hers. She smiled while he kissed her and she suddenly became relaxed and no longer stressed. They broke their kiss and Tess smiled wider.
“You’re a great kisser … but you stink of whatever is on that pile of s-“
“Okay then but I really believe you two should go out. You two are so right for each other.” Sarah interrupted.
Crime was popular here and no police cars could enter the area because the traumatic teenagers have built a wall of old newspapers, which act as a strong defence scheme towards the law. Helicopters could still play an omnipresent role on the teenager’s lives, but not many visited the area.
“I’ve loved her for months.” Drake whispered. Everyone laughed heartily and smiled as they decided to light the pile of newspapers on fire and burn away the layer that protected something supposedly important.
“I love you more than my suicide attempts.” Tess replied, smiling. Everyone else sat around the fire and his or her smile faded … the laughing stopped.
“That’s not funny, Tess.” I moaned.
“I think whatever she says is as beautiful as she is …” Drake kissed her again and Tess smirked widely, similar to Freedom’s smirk.
“Has that fire burnt away the newspaper pile yet?” I asked, eyeing the crackling fire.
“Check it; it’s the obvious thing to do.” Jasmine said.
“I’ll burn my hand.” I moaned, pulling an annoyed face at Jasmine.
“Put it out with some of that beer that’s been left in those cans, duh!” Jasmine crossed her arms and rolled her eyes.
“Are you stupid? If you put alcohol onto a fire, it’ll ignite!” Drake exclaimed.
“You’re terrible at this, Jasmine.” Tess moaned, “I have some water in my pocket, put it out with that.” Tess handed me a bottle of still water and I opened it, pouring its contents onto the peaceful fire. The fire died slowly and once the fire had disappeared, a thin burnt layer of newspapers remained. I punched them and they immediately broke into hundreds of small pieces.
Everyone’s faces were around the hole.
“Who is gonna put their hands in there?” Drake asked.
Every face looked up at Jasmine.
“What … me? You must be joking. I only had my nails done last week!” Jasmine moaned.
“You have gloves on.” I frowned at her.
“Oh, you mean these old things? No they’re not gloves – they are …” Jasmine said, rolling her eyes once more.
“Forget it, I’ll do it.” I sighed and dug my hand into the putrid hole.
“Is there anything there?” Tess asked. She was sitting on Drake’s knee and kept kissing him on the cheek.
“As a matter of fact … there is not.” Michael sighed.
The dirt was disgustingly slimy and the smell was killing me – exaggerated, of course. I dug deeper and deeper beneath the earth with my cupped hand.
“Found anything?” Jasmine asked.
“Nope, I’m almost … almost there.” I replied.
I began to punch areas of the hole, hopping that my fist would hit a hard surface.
“Wait, almost there.” I bit my lower lip, which is what I do when I’m concentrating.
“What a weird moment for you to be concentrating.” Kathy said.
“Just you wait, I’ll have it soon.”
“Have what soon? Do you know what’s down there?” Kathy’s eyes became wide with disappointment.
“I’ll give up in a minute … actually, I’ll make a deal: I’ll give up when Drake and Tess stop kissing.” I laughed and Kathy laughed in unison.
Drake and Tess were inseparable at the moment. They wouldn’t stop kissing even if, I don’t know, a volcano erupted around them!
“There’s something down there that will only please a money greedy man.” Kathy sighed.
“How would you know that there’s money down here?” I asked accusingly, a smile still fixed on my face, “You couldn’t predict the weather.”
“Oh, you really think so? I predict it’ll rain in an hour – exactly.” Kathy smirked at me and I smirked back, still digging around with my hand.
“He’s right, you can’t predict a thing! How much do you think my necklace was then?” Jasmine frowned.
“So, do you really think I can predict things? Do you believe me?” Kathy maintained her smile, ignoring the moody Jasmine.
“Prove it then. Tell me what’s down this hole.” I said.
“There’s Fifty million pounds, to be exact.” Kathy said with her eyes closed, reopening them when she said the three words that stabbed at my chest.
My mouth was open in a dramatic ‘O’ shape. My heart was racing at the speed of a train. My hand suddenly became its own earthquake.
“Fifty million pounds … fifty … million … pounds? You must be blooming joking!” I exclaimed, “For bloody hell’s sake you two, stop kissing and listen to what she just said!”
Drake broke the kiss and looked furious.
“What do you want? Can’t you see we’re kissing?” Tess exclaimed.
“Of course I can see that! But, Kathy just said that there was fifty million pounds down this hole!” I exclaimed.
“Forget about it, Mike, she’s almost never right.” Drake said, wrapping his arms around Tess’ wide waist.
“Fine then, when you find a tin box down there with fifty million pounds hidden within it then I’ll be here to laugh at you and chant …” Kathy got up and began to chant: ‘I proved you wrong! I proved you wrong!”
“Fine … I bet I won’t even find a tin – “I said and just before I finished the sentence I heard a ‘THUMP’.
‘THUMP’, but it wasn’t an ordinary ‘THUMP’ – it sounded like metal. I put my other hand in there and grasped the small tin box. I brought it out and it was very rusty – the original colour had faded away. The worst part, the part about the tin box that made me nearly drop it, was the fact that in marker pen on the top of the box was … my name.
I pulled the hinge up and lifted the lid. Wrapped in several elastic bands was a very large pile of fifty-pound notes. I was going to gasp but because everyone else was gasping in awe (Drake and Tess had FINALLY stopped kissing!) I decided not to.
“I told you that –“Kathy started.
“You dare dance around like a fool and mock me.” I moaned.
“Sorry, but I’m just glad I’m right.”
“You don’t know that – it could be more or less than fifty million.”
“It’s still money – I’m half right at the moment.” Kathy gleamed.
I picked up the money and flicked through it.
“We’ve gotta get out of here.” I whispered.
“Why do we have to?” Jasmine asked.
“’Cause they’ll be coming soon and I don’t think they’d wanna sit down and drink tea and have a calm chat, would you if you saw that trespassers ruined your territory?” I asked, pocketing the large sum of money.
I got up and turned around to face my friends who were walking the opposite way. As my head turned around to face the opposite direction, a cold metallic object was pressed against my temple. My eyes were wide with terror.
“Yuh put that money back, now!” Cry snapped.
“Where are my friends?” I asked furiously.
“They’re being dealt with by the rest of the crew. Give me the money or yuh and yuh friends will die. Hand it over … NOW!” Cry wrapped his strong arm around my neck and pulled me backwards. I was choking. I couldn’t breathe.
“I could kill you! You don’t realise how pathetic you are! Your crew couldn’t hurt a fly, especially you – or should I say ‘yuh’!” I snapped.
The knife slashed.
Note to self: go back to West Park to find the box once Cry is dead.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 14
(Before the day I began school year 9 and after the gang fight in West Park)

“You sure I s-should? But are you r-really sure I s-should?” I stuttered, breathing as fast as life.
“Just ask the girl out, what’s the worse thing that can happen?” Kathy replied. She sat at the other side of the table in the classroom.
“She could say ‘no’.” I moaned, resting my head on my outstretched palm.
“Michael and Kathy, stop talking, please!” Mrs Misery snapped, looking up out of her round glasses. She then began to explain exothermic reactions. YAWN!
“Exothermic reactions are reaction that …”
“So, when and where would be romantic to ask?” I whispered to Kathy. “Tell her on Valentine’s Day at dawn when we have that party at Drake’s.” Kathy whispered back.
“… Give out energy, usually in the form of heat, which is shown by …”
“I think that’s perfect, just like Chelsea. However, I don’t think I want to go Drake’s, remember what he did?”
“Of course I do, don’t remind me. He had me more depressed than I originally was. I can’t believe he’d say he’s dying and then ask me out a few weeks later!”
“… Increasing the temperature … so remember, ‘ex’ could represent ‘exit’ to say that the heat is exiting into its surroundings. For example, heat is leaving me from the anger I am experiencing from Kathy and Michael’s constant chatting!” Mrs Misery’s voice erupted with a vigorous tone of voice and mood.
Mrs Misery’s shrill voice startled Kathy and she fell off her chair, which made me burst into laughter.
“Get out, both of you, immediately!”
“Oh, shut up you weirdo!” I snapped at Mrs Misery as Kathy got up out of her chair, “I know it was a cheap shot, but it was worth it!” I whispered to Jasmine who was scribbling graffiti in her book.
“Detention, both of you, after school – do I make myself clear?”
“You’re as clear as a window you horrible witch!” Kathy moaned.

“What you doing tomorrow?” I asked Kathy as we walked out of school.
“I’m going town with Drake.”
“Aw, a first date, eh?” I put my right arm around her shoulder.
“No!” She laughed. “I don’t think of him like that.”
“Why don’t you? You haven’t dated in three months! Maybe this is your chance.” I said, kicking a ball that was in the middle of the street. Kathy kicked it away from me and laughed.
“Or maybe every boy runs away when they ask: ‘Well, how about you, what are you like?’ I know I’m messed up so I’m sure boys know as well.” Kathy chuckled.
I stroked her cheek and looked at my fingers.
“You’re wearing make-up, you never wear make-up.” I moaned.
“Well, maybe I’m just trying to get a boyfriend, aren’t I? I’m ugly so the make-up helps.”
“You are not ugly and your life is not messed up! If it was messed up then you’d be hanging off that noose at West Park like you always talk about but you haven’t spoke about it in months so maybe for once … you like your life …” I said.
“Yeah, fat chance! Want a drink?” Kathy asked.
“Yeah, what is it?”
“It’s alcohol, of course.” Kathy chuckled like I was a fool to ask that question. She passed me a bottle of a red liquid and I quickly drank it.
“I keep thinking that one day this will get us somewhere bad. Alcohol seems to ruin the life of every individual.”
“Don’t be such a square – alcohol is great, it makes you forget all the bad things …” Kathy replied looking up at the sky.
“But it can kill you.” I replied.
“Exactly, that’s another reason why I drink it!” Kathy gleamed.
I frowned at her. “I don’t like to hear that. Maybe when you have someone you won’t think negative all the time.”
“Hopefully, but don’t count on it.”
“Well, who do you like then?” I chuckled.
Kathy’s smile faded. She leant forward and whispered in my ear.
“Guess …”
My smile faded. I stopped walking and stared at her intently.
She leant forward and pressed her lips against mine. I kissed her back but felt … strange, as if I was cheating on Chelsea, despite us not even going out! I would never cheat on anyone, I promised myself that. I pulled away from Kathy and gave her a little smile before running toward my street. I couldn’t hear Kathy’s footsteps, which bewildered me. I turned around and saw that she was … crying. I ran back to her and wrapped my arms around her. I felt that after every step I took toward her, someone was watching me. I seem to always have that feeling – I was talking about it to Tess last week and she agreed with me. We’re always being watched … but by whom?
“One day we’ll be together … not today.” I whispered, and then I asked the random question that was throbbing in my mind, “Do you feel … like you’re being watched?”

I wanted to read on even though I remember the day vaguely. The rest of the ‘age 14’ pages had been torn out. I frowned deeply when I read the part about being watched. I had that feeling now. My shaking hands turned the page whilst the baby’s eyes strolled around the room, searching for something. For a second, I assumed the baby felt as if it was being watched and maybe the other baby that was kicking me felt the same too.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 13
(Before I asked Kathy out and after I became friends with Tess)

The night was drenched with death. The world was spinning. I shot through the isolated, whispering streets and down an alleyway that blood hits the floor commonly. I spotted the site of screaming: Kathy’s house.
The stranger sprinted after me with a large group of ‘death kings’ behind him. I hammered on Kathy’s door for assistance but there was no reply, except the sound that caused my soul to leave behind my shaking body: the sound of knuckles beating skin.
I have one message that lingered in the back of my mind: never wander the streets alone. To wander the streets alone gives an impression that you’re tough: the impression I need. However, this is where I’d meet my two friends who would help with the fight.
The alleyway was cloaked with smoke, as were my spirits. I felt excited yet angry. The vein on my muscles was pulsing with relinquish. My eyes were alert. I quickly stared back at the angry teenager. I took a risk. I stopped running.
He caught up with me and beat me with his fist that had a metal knuckle because his knuckles were replaced from an ‘accident’ two years ago. My neck clicked as my head was beat backwards.
“You murdered her; I should be the one beating the hell out of you.” I whispered.
“Shame your friends won’t help you.” He beat my stomach like clay and I fell back gasping into a puddle with a disgusting red liquid swimming beneath it. I looked to my left to see my two friends whom I was supposed to be meeting.
One of them is called William Type. He is strong enough to lift half a ton! Unfortunately, he has casts on his legs and arms from the previous fights involving illegal weapon abuse. He is eight foot tall and has black hair as dark as my life. He is taller than any gang member on the most dangerous of places. This area is dangerous – very dangerous for any innocent citizen. Murder hides in every corner, awaiting a victim to pounce upon.
The second is known as ‘death by stare’ but his real name, not his disturbing nickname, is Jeremy Johnston. He is short yet powerful! He is slightly chubby and his face reflects the appearance of a chipmunk in some sense. He has brown hair, shaped into a wave by hair gel.
I gasped as he continually began to kick me in the stomach and face and a place that caused me to feel physically sick. Eventually, the rest of his gang that were spending the last five minutes smoking their life away, raced toward me and began to beat me with their fists. One had a baseball bat which occasionally hit my head with impressive force.
William and Jeremy lurked in the shadows and watched, not even making an attempt to help me. My teeth were bared with anger. Why weren’t they helping me when I stuck up for the traitors several times before? They betrayed me.
Every punch was a piece of me falling to the floor. I was breathing heavily. I asked the question which I’d regret:
“Where’s the corpse of my sister, you pieces of death?”
They continued their violent beating. As the ‘leader’ spoke, everyone stopped attempting to kill me.
“You’ll find her soon in a place you won’t expect. We have one request, if you want your girl, Kathy, to live …” He muttered stabbing words which caused me to look up to the house beside us: her house, “You’ll give us the large sum of money you’ll be pushed to find by a dangerous gang called North Shot and if you don’t, the consequences will be more than you’ll expect. Murder after murder and they’ll be clean murders, which you’ll never tell the police about – or you and your family will have a very crappy New Year, involving funeral after funeral. Watch your back, ‘cause they’ll be a dagger in it if you’re not careful.”
“Who … who are you?” I asked shakily.
“Just think of me as your fate: death. We’ll always be watching you with a knife ready to kill you.”

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 12
(Before the North Shot gang discovered DMC and after I was finally happy with my life)

“Here, that’s twenty pounds. Go buy yourself a smart suit and go to church school for me. I want my son to grow up like all those smart, religious other boys who have a good future.” Mum said, kissing me on the cheek and crouching down so she could see me: I’m really short.
“Yes, Mother.” I sighed. She frowned and I smiled, causing her to smile. She gave me a tap on the back and walked toward the front door (which was very close because we were in the porch).
“You go down Red Avenue and you’ll reach a dangerous place called West Park. It’s a horrible place, Michael, and –“Mother started.
“Don’t you convince him of that,” Dad said as he walked down the stairs opposite the front door, “I went there and turned out fine.”
“You turned out fine? You have rapper’s posters all over your wall and have penknives in your top drawer, which you used to carry around when you were fifteen! You have no job instead of sitting around all day playing darts!”
“Well, you needed a penknife then or you’d be dead before you could say ‘Cry Cold’.” Dad replied. Dad is eight foot tall, which is tall enough for any man in his thirties. He has a fluffy black moustache and a small black beard, which is the same colour as his hair. He was wearing a shirt with his favourite rapper on and a pair of jeans: he looked like a thirty-three-year-old teenager! Although, that is exactly what I’m wearing and that’s the type of fashion I wish to keep: a pair of jeans and a shirt with my favourite rapper on.
“Cry Cold?” I asked.
“Back in my day, he was a teenager that wasn’t afraid of getting his hands dirty. He would murder any innocent citizen and would get away with it because the blame would always go to one of his crew. I assume his son will turn out the same, he’s only twelve and he’s already a little rebel.” Dad continued.
“Well, I don’t want our little Michael turning out like that.” Mum ruffled my hair.
“Mum! Don’t embarrass me!” I giggled.
I ran for the door and as my hand touched the doorknob, Mum became serious.
“Before you reach the church, you’ll face a choice of paths. One is the right path and that is the church school, the other leads to that disgusting West Park. If you want success, turn right … not left. You’ll turn out just like your father or maybe even … dead.” Mum whispered. A tear came to her eye as she muttered the word ‘dead’.

Life … what is the point of it? It causes suffering and misery and every piece of bad luck that flies at you angrily results in suicide. Is suicide the right thing to do? I was told that it is sinful to commit suicide and that you will go to Hell. God, is that true? I don’t want more horror and misery than I already have juggling around.
I’ve heard of gangs that roam the street. I watch them sometimes. How they fight each other without guilt – some killing each other. I sometimes feel that I should join one but to join one you have to do something out of character. That’s what I’m doing here, deciding over whether I should join one.
My mother gave me twenty pounds to buy a suit and go to church and I can do that or I can go the opposite direction. I’m walking down the street, passing West Park. On West Park was a gang smoking, looking tough and uncompromising awaiting a fight from anyone who gave him or her ‘the street stare’, which could result in death.
One path led to West Park and the path opposite led to the church. The church was on my right and the West Park was on my left, guarded by a cloud of smoke, I could almost smell the carbon monoxide. Maybe the church being on the right could be a pun: it’s the right decision and the right way to go.
I observed my shaking shadow. Shadows amaze me. I usually make poems about the things I like, but my dad hits me and tells me not to make poems or they’ll lead you to misery. Maybe one last time I can think of one.

The shadows in the compressing, consuming, crying darkness
Swallowed me
As the twisting shapes bobbed on the wall,
Like distorted creatures writhing angrily,
As they swallowed me,
Like they belonged there,

The bewildered wall was their home,
The confounded light was their illumination:
Vibrant, overwhelming illumination,
Brightening up my lonely life

I observed them stare at me,
Their hollow eyes piercing and shining,
Like small spectres of illuminated dots,
I don’t understand you
Why you want to watch me instead,
Other than the pictures on the wall
That reflects your dreary depression
And dread!

Why do you wish to follow me tonight?

You speak another language,
You watch the blinding light that fades you away,
You are a mirror to me!

I find it difficult to see,
Through the hollowness,
That overlooks you.

You shift,
You shape,
Into my worst nightmares,
Like soft clay moulding into new qualities,

Why do you wish to follow me tonight?

You whisper silently to me
You talk to me in my dreams,
You observe the clock that slices away the seconds,
You are a fountain, twisting and turning, in the hollow darkness.

The wall changes,
Yet you always stay the same,
My follower conceived by the sun’s illuminating …
LIGHT: your phobia
LIGHT: what you do not treasure
LIGHT: what brought upon the abashed shapes.

Why do you wish to follow me tonight?

You are my partner in disguise,
You always watch over me,
Until the ravenous darkness consumes you
… Including me …

If I go to Church school, I’ll have a successful life full of understanding of religion. If I turn left to go to West Park, I’ll change into a violent teenager who is hated by everyone who roams the streets. But when a person desires the right path that suits them through life, the entire universe conspires to realise the correct path to walk upon. One path is buried in flowers with money obscured beneath them where success and enchantment awaits you. The other is a path smothered in thick dirt that would trap you so that you couldn’t escape even if you struggled through it and scattered across that dirt would be the death inhibiting sinful companions that many teenagers deal with.
I made my decision. My heart pulled me right but my legs pulled me left. My life is going to change.
“What the Hell is this shrimp doing on our territory? Big Ben, deal with ‘im.” One of the smoking fifteen-year-olds said.
A huge individual began to walk toward me. Why was he walking so weirdly? His shoulders seemed like they wanted to jump to the pavement and his legs were moving in weird directions. It was so dark because everything is swallowed by darkness early in the winter, so dark that I couldn’t make out their faces or physical appearance.
“I wanna join the crew?” I muttered, looking down at the floor.
A heard an eruption of laughter and quickly looked up.
“You’re a shrimp; you couldn’t harm a bloody fly!” one of the six said.
“Go on, go find your mummy!”
Anger was building up inside me. My fists were clenched, my face screwed up and my teeth bore like a mad dog. I felt as if I could kill.
“Pip squeak little shrimp is what you are, now go back to nursery, you piece of filth.” Their leader, I presume, said.
Anger was piling on inside me like my building blocks.
I snapped. I rushed forward and seemed to be walking like that Big Ben guy, it seemed cool so I decided to try it. My walk wasn’t tough or scary, but it was almost perfect.
“I could kill you. I could kill all of you. I am willing to murder and break the law and fight other gangs that cause you problems. I WANT RESPECT! If you don’t give me respect …” I yanked out the penknife tucked in my pocket and threatened them with it, pointing it at them with fury. One of them came forward with their teeth bared and their angry eyes fixed on my neck. I panicked. As he was about to punch enough strength to kill me, I jabbed him in the chest with my penknife and brought it out in triumph. His lifeless body fell to the floor like a doll. I frowned deeply. My whole body was shaking and my palms were covered in sweat.
You’ve murdered someone.
This is the start: I’m going to change.
Goodbye innocent little boy, welcome the new Cry Cold.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 11
(At this point, I didn’t know what the word depression meant; I was happy, living life with a childish smile)

My MP4 (music player) was playing the music that reflected my life: cold, solemn, depressing songs of hate and revenge: yes, I was listening to rap music.
I crossed the empty park that was usually occupied by excited, delighted infants who were discovering the world. There’s not much to discover: there’s nothing to the world.
I ran toward the swings and jumped upon one. I swung back and forth upon the swing, as I swung forward, I thought of all the good memories and as I swung backwards, I thought of all the bad memories.
I looked to my left and saw a small girl. She seemed perky and short. Her hair was pushed away from her eyes in a split fashion and was tied up at the back with a bobble. Her hair was long, thin and dark brown with continuous curls here and there.
“Hi-ya, I didn’t see you before.” I said to her.
She had her head down and was crying. She slowly sliced the knife in her left hand across her right wrist and wept into her wrist.
I felt physically sick once I caught sight of the horrible way she was doing this. I’ve never seen someone do this before but it seemed as disgusting as the time I ate dirt!
“What does that do?” I asked her.
“Just leave me alone, alright?” She wept harder into her hands.
“I-I don’t understand.” I screwed up my face and frowned deeply.
“You wouldn’t. I’ve seen you, sometimes. You laugh whenever you jump off these swings. I’m different … we’re different. When I jump off these swings at a great height, I hope to die.” The girl muttered silently yet powerfully.
I laughed and she stared at me vividly. “You can’t kill yourself by jumping off the swings.”
“I hope you can,” the girl whispered, snuffling.
“Why would you want to kill yourself? What does ‘kill yourself’ mean?” I asked, bewildered.
“When you kill yourself, you go to Hell or Heaven, which is what I believe. I want to go to Heaven to be with my real dad and not with my horrible mother,” the girl said.
“What is wrong with your mother?” I asked.
“She hits me. She tries to kill me and almost has on several occasions. She has cirrhosis and emphysema.” The girl said and she pronounced emphysema as ‘am-ph-hiss-may’ and cirrhosis as ‘sir-ho-sissy-sis’, which made me giggle with glee, then she corrected herself after pronouncing the words wrong, “She has a month to live.”
“What is a moth?” I asked.
“I said ‘month’ not ‘moth’!” she giggled lightly. She stopped slicing her writs like chopping vegetables and began to be normal.
“Yeah … O … K … what’s a month?” I asked whilst I jumped off the swings and examined the penknives on the floor.
“A gap of the year consisting of four to five weeks.” She replied.
“Wow, you’re smart.” I gasped with exaggeration.
“Not really, just wacky and crazy!” the girl laughed, “You’re eleven and you don’t know the meaning of such simple words?”
“I’m not very well much educated.” I said, “What’s your name?”
“Not sure I want to tell you,” the girl giggled.
“Come on, tell me your name.” I laughed back, staring into her eyes and walking closer.
“Kathy Kimberley, what’s yours?” Kathy asked.
“I’m the love king, baby.” I said seriously.
Kathy exploded into a roar of laughter. “Where did you learn that?”
“My friend told me that was my name ‘cause I seem to flirt with every girl that walks by. I believed him so that’s what I call myself.” I replied, confounded.
“So, what is your real name?” Kathy asked.
“Michael Winters.” I replied.
“Good name, it suits the season.” Kathy smiled.
“Shut up!” I said jokingly, “Why are all these knives here?”
“Gangs come here.” Kathy replied.
“Oh, I know what gangs are. They’re a group of violent individuals who go around pretending they’re tough and strong.” I said.
“You don’t know simple words but you know about gangs?”
“My dad tells me all about them. He tells me past stories about his experiences just before I’m about to go to sleep – that’s just perfect, isn’t it? For example, he told me about a gang who broke into the house of their enemy and brutally beat him up in his sleep – he never woke up again.” I sighed with boredom.
“I don’t like the idea of gangs but I do light fires quite often.” Kathy muttered.
I kissed her on the cheek as she got up out of her swing.
“What’d you do that for?” Kathy asked, frowning.
“That’s what my dad’s gang used to do to girls to show they liked them.” I said enthusiastically.
“I’m sure when he was a teenager that they probably kissed differently, not on the cheek. That’s what teenagers want, mostly.”
“How do you know what teenagers like?” I asked, bewildered.
“My brother is one. He leaves behind teenage books full of weird words and phrases.” Kathy said, running to the basketball court and picking up a stray basketball, throwing it into the air toward the ring. The basketball bounced off the ring and soared downward towards me, hitting me on the head.
Kathy exploded in laughter. I just muttered bad words under my breath that my brother taught me.
I caught the ball and passed it to Kathy.
“What sort of words?” I asked.
“Well …” Kathy leant forward and whispered a word into my ear. I laughed in unison to Kathy.
“That’s a weird word. I might use it more often.” I said and she smiled.
“I think I better head home. My mum will want something to hit to free herself of stress and I’m going to my mate’s house.” Kathy sighed.
“Oh … I see. Will I ever see you again?” I sighed back.
“Possibly … just keep coming to West Park.” Kathy gave me a hug and I rested my head on her shoulder.
“Bye, Kathy Kimberley.” I said as I walked the opposite direction to her.
“Bye, Michael ‘Love King’ Winters.” Kathy said with depression dripping off her words.

/ l /
- Michael Winters –
Age 10
(Just a child)

Today was the worse day yet the best day of my life, I …

The rest of the page was torn out and the other half of the sentence was blotted and illegible. I believe I know why but if I think about it, I may continue my suicide attempts at West Park again.


/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

“Why is that any concern?” I asked shakily.
“She has something we need to kidnap,” the killer said.
“Not her baby …” I gasped with horror, backing away from him.
“Exactly, if that baby is born then we will all be killed by Cry. We already have one of Michael’s offspring; we hired a woman and gave her a fake name to take Hailey Stanza’s baby. I believe her fake name was Mrs Calorie,” the killer said, pressing the knife closer to my throat.
“I’ll tell you where she is if you let me go.” I was breathing heavily and my hands were shaking uncontrollably.
There was a moment of hesitation in which the killer gathered his thoughts.
“Yes, just tell me where she is or I’ll crush your skull like an egg!”
“Erm … she is at the church in the town centre mourning over Michael’s body.” I was panting uncontrollably.
“That’s perfect … we need an important page of his memory log that tells us where to find that chest.”
“So does that mean you won’t kill Kathy?” I asked.
“Possibly, all we need is her baby. You may go now; we have no use for you.”
“I’ve told you where Kathy is, tell me where Drake is.” I asked.
“He’s being tortured in the ruins of a mine on Robinson’s farm.”
“You’re torturing him?” I snapped with furious frustration filtrating through my words.
I asked one question that was troubling me before I opened the door to freedom: “Why do you want Michael’s children?”
“It’s our only way of getting revenge to a heartless, dead teenager.”
I sprinted to the front door, almost tearing it off when I pulled it open. I ran out into the cold air and began to search for Drake to tell him what these cruel people were doing … if I don’t die on the way there.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

I was in the damp corner of an abandoned warehouse with ropes tied to my arms and legs and fixed onto chains on the wall. Cry made his way toward me and placed a vice around my thin, quivering wrist. He didn’t tighten it – not yet, anyway.
“Drake Carter, do yuh enjoy life?” Cry snapped, pacing up and down the room. Sets of torturing devices were on a table behind him and I eyed them cautiously.
“Do yuh want to live?” Cry asked calmly.
“Yes, but –“
“Then tell me yuh worthless piece of filth, where is Kathy Kimberley?” He asked with a vigorous tone.
“Dunno, just please don’t hurt me!” I whimpered like a five-year-old.
Cry tightened the vice and I cried out in agony. My vein was pulsing – begging for mercy. He punched my nose like a dagger shooting through my skin. Blood poured south down my face and squirmed over my mouth.
“Yuh do know but yuh are just afraid to utter another word in case I rip your mouth off with a knife!” Cry snapped.
“Alright, alright, I’ll tell you where she is! Just don’t tighten the vice, please!” I gasped, trying to pull myself free of the vice with my other hand.
“Oh, I wont tighten the vice … Ben, get the metal spike encrusted baseball bat!” Cry snapped.
“No! I’ll talk! I’ll talk!” I snapped in horror. I was breathing heavily and the circulation of blood to my wrist was slowly disappearing. Innocent tears were streaming down my pale face.
“Fine then, I’ll ask a more important question: where is Michael?” Cry snapped.
“He’s living in America! Let me go! Let me go, please! I’m begging you! Please …” I whispered, crying out in pain.
“Yuh are a filthy liar!” Cry struck me across the face with his fist and impressive force was trapped into his punch. My head bent backwards with great speed and hit the wall behind me. I couldn’t see anything. I- I- I …

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

The impenetrable fog churned sinisterly, rolling over the countryside in the early morning light as though fleeing from some unknown spectre. Nothing was visible but a few feet in front of me, where the outline of a barbed wire fence loomed and the damp grass whipped against me in the low wind. The bitter cold was making every inch of my exposed skin feel on fire, prickling and burning. An unfathomable silence seemed to radiate from the opaque mist and enclosed me; the only sound was that of my beating heart and quickening breath as I stumbled slightly on the overgrown vegetation that lined the grassland.
Out of the haze appeared the outline of an old and withered tree; the knotted branches stretched upwards and outwards covering a vast area of what was in front of me. The gnarled trunk was glaring as though it knew why I was there and wanted me to abandon my plans and go back to the snug bed at my home many miles away. I deciphered its low creaking and unbreakable stare as whispered warnings – maybe only to appease my own fear – and yet, despite my desperation to heed its counsel, I felt my numb legs carry me onwards towards a small gap at its base.
Reaching a diminutive breech in the rusting wires of the fence, I recognised the place where I had to cross to bring me closer to the wizened tree. Cautiously, I ducked down and attempted to pass, ghostlike, through the fence but the imposing prongs snagged on my clothing and the numbness – which by now had spread like a poison through my body – caused me to collapse onto the frozen ground. It took a moment for me to steady myself, the mist rising from my icy lips was adding abundantly to the fog, which obscured my vision and assisted the cold running over my skin.
Swallowing hard, I pushed myself to my feet; feeling the tarnished wire digging through my ice-white skin, which screamed in protest as copious amounts of scarlet blood burst forth and fell, only to freeze as it hit the arctic floor.
Determinedly, I pushed onwards until the tree’s protective lower branches enclosed me like a defensive cocoon; trapping out the obstinately swirling mist and relentlessly bitter chill, allowing me to calm slightly. My breath slowed as I watched shapes materialize and transform in the fog’s heart – I almost forgot the apprehensive weight in the pit of my stomach as I observed their ramblings.
A sudden eruption of noise interrupted my musings and forced each of my senses to sharpen tenfold. The sour tang of petrol fumes stung after the simple smell of the fresh morning air and the incandescent glare of car headlights set of a torturous burning sensation within my eyes, like the one that was tormenting the beat of my vigorous heart, begging … just begging … for a thin, sharp pentagon-shaped object to obscure itself beneath the thin layer of insulation around my body.
My breathing pace increased, every so slightly and ever so calmly, camouflaging my existence from the villainous, putrid people that resembled demons interiorly, awaiting my presence to then – ever so swiftly – strike the pentagon-shaped object through my skin, flesh and heart like I was worthless clay!
I took a curious step forward before sprinting ever so quickly that not even the teenagers could accommodate and focus on the swift speed of my interpretations and skill. However, immediately they spotted me. I may have swift wit but the twenty or more chocolate bars I devour greedily daily could hardly increase my slow stamina.
The tallest teenage boy sprinted before me and leapt at my neck (what is North Shot’s obsession with attacking the neck?) The boy knocked me down, causing me to stumble and roll down the hill with the boy pressuring my arms with impressive force. I leapt out of his grip and hit him instinctively in the face, sprinting ahead with anaerobic respiration attacking me after only a few seconds.
I took a deep, instinctive yet uneasy breath in and breathed out with agony as my eyes jolted downhill to where my final destination would be. The farm was in view of my eagle-like vision; obscuring the light rays that reflected off the broken glass entrance into where the person whom had my heart and life clasped within his hands, ready to end it undoubtedly with a malicious decision.
The entrance was a metre away so I walked slyly toward the back of the place and spotted a set of old books piled up below a window. I stood on the pile of books and stared through the broken window with half my face obscured and the top half of my face in view.
I watched as my best friend was tortured inhumanely and his screaming could probably be heard in the South. I looked around on the floor to see whether I could spot anything that would remove the torturer and the pain Drake was experiencing.
I eyed dubiously a set of garden tools but they wouldn’t do much harm. I then spotted a gun half buried beneath the dirt. It must be my lucky day. However, is it loaded?
I reached down to grab it, pulling it from the dirt. I opened the butt of the gun and hoped that it will have one bullet inside. I prayed to God that it will have a bullet inside. Inside … was nothing. I sighed with discomfort from the irritation of tension. I searched my pockets and found nothing.
I eyed the contents on the floor to see if I could find anything metal and harmful. Yes! I spotted a chunk of lead, small enough to fit inside the gun. I picked it up and shoved it inside the gun with my heart hammering against my chest. My hands were quivering. I dropped the gun because of my quivering hands, causing a ‘clink’ to break the exterior silence of the area. I stared into the room in hope that no one could hear me.
I was wrong. I looked up and immediately saw a sunken, pale face with blood smothered like paint across his forehead and cheeks. I fell backwards and stared up in horror at his face. I heard a click from under the window – a click similar to the sound of a gun being loaded.
Was I right?
I was right. The teenager locked his stare and the gun at me.
“What do yuh want? Give me a reason not to shoot yuh on the premises.”
“I’ll do anything to get Drake back. Please don’t kill him.” I whispered.
“Too late.”
After an agonising moment of horrible hesitation, I stuttered what would be my final words.
“W-what do you mean?”
“Well …” the teenager lightly chuckled, “To put it blankly … you’re next.”


The sound of hammering against the church door could be heard and the screaming of Hailey’s voice caused the baby in my arms to cry. My stomach lurched with great ease and I gasped from the pain I was experiencing: something was happening and I hope it wasn’t what I believed it was because it’s 2 months early … I rocked the baby back and forth and shushed him but he still screamed. He screamed at the same pitch I did when we were caught committing a suicide cult.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

“What time shall we commit the suicide cult?”
“You really want to go through with this?” Molly asked.
“Of course. I’ll do anything to fit in.” I said.
“You know, you don’t have to listen to Billy, you could always prove yourself in a different way.”
“I know but this way seems better.”
“I know what it is! You like Billy!”
“I … do not! Why do you think that?”
We were walking toward West Park to meet the others who were planning to drink all night after waiting the whole week to do so, then afterwards, a suicidal cult.
“Because you spend all your time with him and you kissed him on the cheek last week because he leaned in to take your glasses off!”
“Yeah … that was very embarrassing.” I blushed uncontrollably.
“Whatever happened to your glasses?” Molly asked, bewildered.
“I was so embarrassed I bought contact lenses. They’re a pain but they’re reasonable. At least I’ll never have to be embarrassed like that again.”
“That’s stupid. You only want yourself to look more attractive to Geoffrey.” Molly smirked and crossed her arms.
“Possibly. Why do you call him Billy anyway? That isn’t even his name, is it?”
“We call him Billy because he is a vigorous individual that is sly and ruthless, like Billy the Kid from the Wild West.” Molly said, smiling.
“Okay … are we nearly there yet?” I moaned.
“Almost. Are you sure you want to do this though?”
“Yes, I am! I think it’s you that’s feeling uncertain.”
“Yeah because there’s nothing going in the wrong direction in my life and I love my family and friends. I don’t want to commit suicide.” Molly said uncertainly.
“I suppose it does sound a little … foolish.” I sighed. Do I really want to do this?
We turned a corner and the slowly swerving swings with a gentle pulse of uncertainty, reflecting the mood of those around them, came into view. This was the familiar West Park where dark sorrows covered it like a dark cloud and the dignity of life could not pass through it. At West Park, I tried to commit suicide, Drake murdered a gang member and alcohol has been a friend and foe to everyone I know. The thick, dark cloud dominated over the recessive joyfulness that usually fills the hearts of those who realise their life is finally moving in the right direction. The ascendancy of the dark cloud would cloak this day because today … is the day … I die.
That dark cloud suddenly leapt away from West Park and its ascendancy was given to the weak joyfulness that usually fills hearts. At this particular moment, it was my heart. Yes, my depressed heart.
Something new came into view. A tall boy with a sly insistent smirk stared sternly at me, squinting carefully to try to recognise a long-lost childhood friend that was searching for sorrow and instead found joy.
My expression was the reflection of a young child’s expression at Christmas or that of a woman who has just said ‘yes!’ to a proposal of marriage.
Molly looked over at me and burst out laughing when she spotted the expression on my face.
“I see you know Billy.” Molly smiled at me then at the boy in front of me.
“Michael … is – is that you?” I asked ecstatically.
“Kathy, Kathy, Kathy – would a hug be inappropriate?”
“Definitely not!” I rushed toward him and wrapped my arms around him with a gentle squeeze.
I broke the hug but still smiled at him. “It feels like yesterday since we were little kids coming to meet each other here!” I giggled.
“I don’t know, what does yesterday feel like? I didn’t think you could feel yesterday.” Michael laughed, which caused me to laugh too.
“I see you know each other then?” Molly asked.
“Yeah, Michael and I are childhood friends. We lost touch at the end of primary school.”
“Michael … your name is Billy isn’t it?” Molly asked, bewildered.
“Well … my real name is Michael but people call me Billy since that day I … well … struck someone with a sharp object.” Michael muttered.
“Yeah, we can forget about that though, cant we?” Molly whispered to Michael.
“How have you been all these years then Michael?” I said excitedly.
“I’ve been great ever since I beat up William Type and Jeremy for what they did to me.” Michael sighed angrily with relief.
“He did that last year and has felt the same way about it since then.”
Michael suddenly seemed as if he was being stabbed in the back and not metaphorically speaking either. He stared mindlessly into the distance and a stern stare replaced his uneasy smile. He shuddered instantly after that as if a chill crept up his spine. I suddenly had the same feeling. A feeling of awkwardness and paranoia like the symptoms of schizophrenia.
Molly shook Michael and he immediately shook off the same feeling I was experiencing and I did the same.
“Michael – what’s wrong?” Molly asked.
“Never mind. Have you got the stuff for the suicide? The others will be here soon.” Michael asked.
“Who are the others, anyway?” I asked.
“My friends: Tess Calamber, you’ll like her ‘cause she is really enthusiastic and confident and there’s my new friend, Drake Carter. He’s very thin and suppressed with anxiety about fat and has a poor self-image. So he’s anorexic, of course.” Michael replied.
“None of them are as nice as Michael, of course.” Molly giggled.
I stared at Molly bewildered yet with a sense of anxiety. She wants to compete with flirtation. Shame she’ll lose.
“Thanks Molly but all I want to do is get this over and done with before we get caught. The police are everywhere. You can’t escape them but once it goes dark then it’s easy to outwit them.” Michael smirked. Michael walked towards an old fallen tree and sat down so we followed him and did the same, walking with a sense of dignity with a strut. Well, basically just ‘showing off’.
Michael drew a set of sharp objects together from his pocket and glared at them anxiously. He then handed one to me.
“What is this?” I asked, frowning.
“What do you think? Why do you think we’re here?” Michael replied with an irritated tone.
Light, gentle footsteps caused my head to swiftly glare up from the sharp, overpoweringly scary, shiny sharp objects that glared up at me as a reflection from the ominous sun that would map out my fate on this day. This day: Mother’s Day, the day when the life of my previous best friend was taken without caution. In fact, it was the same day I realised that life is simple and given to you for a purpose … but what purpose? I was supposed to die one year today but I refused by committing my own, foolish actions.
Why did I prevent it? Why do I have to die this way … today?
If I could control fate by taking my own choices, my own decisions without any consent of anyone else, what sort of person would that make me? It would be a foolish one, in my own frightening mind.
On the other hand, what if I tried to do that? What if … I tried to break a sin that has been committed by many teenagers throughout the country? Would that make me a bad, foolish person – or a smart person for trying, for trying what others fear?
I’m going to try. I’m going to grab one of the sharp metal objects and commit what will end mental suffering but will inhibit great physical pain. ‘Take the risk, you never know what might come of it,’ one side of my conscience urged. ‘What are you doing!’ the other side of my conscience stated angrily. I asked myself which side of my conscience I should follow. Maybe I should ignore them. But there is one thing I cannot ignore and that was reality, which was beginning and ending with the light footsteps urging closer. The footsteps of a girl called Tess Calamber that would spiral another depressing episode in my life … just the common same old, same old – again.
“Hello! I am Tess and isn’t life just fantastic? Oh, I could live this life forever and ever. Couldn’t you, miss … miss …” Tess began.
“Kathy Kimberley,” I sighed.
“Why the sigh, do you hate your name?” Tess asked.
“Nah, just the rhythm of it.” I sighed deeply again.
“Ah, alliteration is great though, isn’t it?” Tess asked.
“… Suppose …” Obviously, I had no apparent idea over what alliteration was or involved. I just nodded along as rhythmically as my name.
“So why do you want to do this then? I think it’s a dull day for it to be honest.” Tess asked enthusiastically.
“Why is everything so enthusiastic and great to you? When the most depressing things in the world pass your lips you make them seem like a grand parade of good news.” Michael laughed at his words and then looked around to realise everyone was staring intently at him. I had one eyebrow raised, which was a reflection of Molly and Tess.
“Where’s Drake then?” I asked Tess.
“Drake is trapped in a meeting on the 15th floor of the 6th building on his never-ending street.” Tess sighed and gave me a half smile to say: ‘you do realise he’s lying, don’t you, you fool?”
“So, basically he lied to you?” Molly asked Tess.
“Of … course,” Tess sighed, “Anyway, don’t you think we should do what we came to do before we get caught.”
“I agree.” Everyone said in unison.
Everyone got out the apparatus for the horrible deed we were about to commit and lay the tip against the end of our wrist.
“Why do we have to do it this way – sorry, I’m just very fussy about sharp things going near me.” Tess said as she cringed.
“I knew you would say something like that,” Michael said and dug into the pockets of his long brown jacket that buried his trousers, “Which is why I brought these.” He took three vials out of his pocket and handed them around to everyone.
I examined mine anxiously and stared at the swirling emerald-green liquid inside.
“This is poison, isn’t it?” Molly asked.
I sighed, “You’re not very smart today, are you?”
“I never am.” Molly giggled and looked over at Michael, expecting a giggle in return from her “innocence”. Of course, Michael did not giggle in return but instead smiled uneasily at me.
“Can we hurry up with this, I’ve got to get home to watch ‘Friends’.” Tess moaned.
Everyone stared at her as if she was joking and then Tess’ eyes went wide and she realised what she had said.
“Oh … I wont be able to watch ‘Friends’ ‘cause I’ll be dead … right.” Tess frowned deeply.
“Alright, on the count of 10, we’ll do it together.” Michael said.
Everyone nodded.
“10 … 9 … 8 … 7 …”
“Could it be a count down from 3 because that’s much quicker?” Tess moaned.
“But I was almost up to 3 before you interrupted me.”
I sighed. “We’d have drank it by now if it wasn’t for this commotion!”
“Fine, fine. 3 … 2,” Michael started but suddenly stopped when red light appeared on his face. He stared with eyes wide into the distance behind me. I turned my head around and stared in shock. Molly and Tess stared in awe. A police car drove across the drive and they were heading for us. Someone had tipped them off.
It was instinct: I sprinted across the field. My feet were pounding against the soft mud that squelched like clay. My heart was racing against time. My eyes were fixed on one point: the rope and beyond it. I sprinted toward it and ran ahead into the woodland behind.
I suddenly heard the sound of leaves crunching beneath my feet and twigs snapping instantaneously. I could hear myself exhaling loudly – so loud, too loud.
I swiftly stared back. No one was following me. Where did Molly, Tess and Michael disappear?
I stopped running and allowed myself to catch my breath. At least no one was following me. I would be arrested: euthanasia is a sin and against the law.
I felt slightly guilty for trying to commit suicide and believe there must be something better in life to do. At least there was one thing I was sure of: no one would find me here. Of course, after thinking that, it had to be inevitable.
The sound of leaves crunching and twigs snapping took control of my senses. My eyes were one hundred percent alert and I was staring in every direction in short amounts of time. I then spotted a figure in the distance and a sharp reflection from the moonlight against a metal object.
“Hello?” I whispered but my voice came out like a croak.
“Long time no see.” A familiar voice replied.
A disturbing, cold feeling swept over me.
The voice was Peter’s.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

Torturous device after torturous device – what was I supposed to do but quiver in agony? The pain reminded me of the previous worst experience of my life and it wasn’t long ago …

“Drake, please stop worrying. You’ll be asleep so you wont feel a thing.” Dad looked over at me and away from his driving.
“I’m not sure I want to go through with this anymore.” I moaned.
Dad sighed. “Don’t be ungrateful – we spent months trying to get you into this hospital. This hospital will do the best for you.”
“I know that but don’t you think my friends will judge me for what I’m going to do? I already lost three stone because my friends and everyone else were bullying me about my weight.”
“Right, stop being so ungrateful! You are going to go into this hospital whether you like it or not and you will have this surgery because if you don’t, you will regret it for the rest of your miserable, pathetic life!” Dad snapped vigorously as we neared the hospital.
“You insensitive piece of filth!” I snapped back as we drove up the hospital drive.
Dad sighed. “You speak again and I’ll chop your ear off beforehand without any surgery!”
I remained quiet after that. We parked the car and walked silently into the hospital. We then checked in and waited the final hours of my life that I looked original – until I had my ear surgery where it would be pulled back. During these hours, I played video games and watched television, despite not focusing on them but maintaining my focus on worry: the element that makes up most of my childhood, teenage years and adulthood.
“Mr Carter, we’re ready for you.” The Nurse came to us and smiled down at me.
I got up and left my Dad behind, following the Nurse cautiously.
“Don’t look so worried. You’ll be fine.” The male Nurse still smiled at me.
“OK, I’m not worrying. What will happen?” I asked shakily.
“Well, we will fix a thin plastic wire into your vein and add a liquid to it that will run into your bloodstream and temporarily deaden your senses. Just count to ten when we put it into your bloodstream and the experience will seem less … intense. I once lost a packet of ‘Polo mints’ betting that that person couldn’t count to ten.” The male Nurse giggled to himself and I faked a smile.
“Aren’t you going to wish me good luck?” I asked.
“Who needs luck? You’ll be “asleep” so you wont feel a thing!” The Nurse continued to smile.
I deeply sighed and awaited the momentous operation that would permanently change my appearance … for the better?


I stared up at the ceiling whilst panting heavily. It was freezing in here! They should have had the dignity to turn up the heating while I was lying here waiting for a frightening operation!
This hospital has become a familiar scene to me. ~I don’t even want to be here. My parents forced me because I was getting on their nerves weeping loudly at night at the fact that I had an ear that stuck out.
My ear sticking out has completely ruined my life. When I meet someone new, I try to make a good first impression but guess where his or her attention immediately focuses on … my ear. There have been rumours for months about that I once lived at a circus because I’m a freak. I was born abnormally: an abnormal deformation … my ear!
My ear has been holding back my confidence since my life began. During Drama lessons at school, in the middle of performances I would cover my ear and my teacher would immediately moan about going out of role. I would have loved to be an actor – but my ear would hold me back because some people only appreciate actors because of their appearance, which is appalling!
During the night and before I go to sleep, I would sleep on my ear so that it would be forced to my head and would not stick out and it would work! However, when I awake the next morning, my ear would be stuck to my head only from sweat and after thirty seconds would eventually pop back out again.
The worst bullying incident related to my abnormal ear is the fact that some people flick my ear as they walk past or EVEN YANK IT WITH IMPRESSIVE FORCE!
Overall, my main point associated with all of these whimpers is that my ear that sticks out in comparison to my perfect left ear, has crumbled my life to pieces.
I considered being a teacher at one point but realised that the second I began teaching, my students would point and laugh and I would pray in horror and ask why I have been given this as a part of my character!
I don’t understand. Why was I gifted with such a horrible thing? That’s why I need this operation: to gain confidence, friends and most of all respect of whom I am, to be judged on the content of my character!
“Drake, are you ready for the surgery?” the doctor asked.
I merely gulped.
“You may feel some pain for a few months and you will have to wear a bandage around your head for six weeks.”
“You mean I have to sleep with it on?” I asked.
“Unfortunately, yes. You see the ear has many nerves within it so it is quite delicate and what we will need to do is stretch the ligament over slightly.”
“Please, I’m already scared enough … will you put a crease in my ear, too? The other one does so it would look unsymmetrical.” I asked with discomfort attached to my weeping words.
“Of course we can. Now, I’ll see you in an hour.” The doctor placed a syringe with a liquid as white as snow swimming inside onto the thin wire-like tube that ran into my vein.
In seconds, the room was filled with three doctors looming over me.
“Count to ten,” One of them whispered vividly.
“1 … 2 … 3 … 4 … 5 … 6 … 7 … 8 … 9 … 10.” My eyes closed.
“OK, get the equipment, he’s unconscious.” The male doctor said.
Wait …
Am I unconscious? My eyes are closed but I can still hear them. I should have fallen asleep at 5 seconds, not 10. Something is very wrong here.
“Alright, we need to make a small incision in his ear so we can reach the ligament in his ear.” A female doctor stated.
She suddenly gasped. “Doctor Gordon, can you come and have a look at this for me? There seems to be a large lump on his neck.”
“A large lump?” The doctor sounded concerned – ‘but why!’ I felt like screaming.
I could feel the doctor’s heavy breathing against my neck. “Hmm, seems to be a tumour.”
Another doctor crowded around me (I could sense their presence by the horrible smell similar to disinfectant). “If it is a malignant tumour, we’ll have to operate immediately.
Operate on a tumour? Are you crazy? If I can smell the disinfectant on you then I must be conscious! I wonder if I can talk …
I’M CONSCIOUS! I snapped but it came out as a thought and not a shout. This is ridiculous! I’m going to experience my operation! Isn’t that illegal or something?
“So, Doctor Gordon how’s your love life?” A female voice sounded.
“Isn’t that a bit irrelevant in this situation?” The doctor apparently called Doctor Gordon replied.
“Come on, answer.” The other doctor laughed.
“I’m single, my wife left me two years ago.” Doctor Gordon replied. I heard the sound of metal clinking: he must be sorting out what surgical equipment to use.
“Would you want someone else to be with? Someone you possibly work with, Doctor Gordon?” the female doctor replied.
“You know, if you’re going to flirt with me you may as well call me by my first name.” Doctor Gordon replied.
“Which is?” the female doctor replied.
“Gregory Gordon.” He replied.
Can you both please stop flirting and get on with the operation! I can’t stand these stupid love situations! I snapped, but of course nobody could hear me! Oh, this was getting so annoying!
I felt a sudden stab of pain that made me flinch. The doctor was cutting into my neck! I screamed and flinched like crazy but when I did, the doctor’s breathing against my neck ceased so he must have turned away to look over at the female doctor. Terrible timing for me!
Please! I beg of you to turn around and realise I’m not asleep!
I can’t experience this! I’ll die from the shock! Please! Please look at me and realise before it’s too late for me! You’re both fools! Doctors are supposed to save people’s lives, not ruin them!
“Alright, Gregory Gordon, would you like to take me out for a drink sometime? I’m free on Monday.” The female doctor said.
“I’ll … think about it. It’s my son’s birthday on Monday.”
“Your son?”
“Well, my adopted son. He was abandoned by his family for associating with a girl in the Dark End of town. He ran to an orphanage fro support and found me.”
“Oh, well I would love to meet him some time. I’ll even buy him a present for his birthday if necessary. There are a few trains in my daughter’s shop that are pretty cheap.”
“He’s 18, Helen. Too grown up. He was nearly placed in a youth hostel for a gang fight.” Gordon stated.
That description sounded so familiar. A friend of mine matched that description. What I’m concerned about more though is that these doctors wont even –
The doctor pulled what was inside the lump out with something that felt like tweezers! It felt like all the life in me was being sucked out of me with a plunger! Oh, the agony! Please stop him from doing this, God! Help me! Someone, please!
The hospital will be getting a very angry report after this! If I could be get hands on that doctor’s neck and show him what pain he is causing to mine …
Breathe heavily, maybe then they’ll realise I’m still conscious!
Oh dear … oh dear, no … the doctor is cutting into the back of my ear and stretching my ligament. It feels like someone is forcing the needle of a sewing machine covered in poison into my ear and bringing it back out with aggressive force! This is worse than anyone yanking my ear – by miles!
“What’s his name?” Helen asked.
“Michael? What an … intriguing name.”
Can you please shut up! Oh, I think I’m going to go mad here! Hearken! Help, help, someone! Please help! See, I am going mad! This operation would go wrong, I’m sure of it and apparently my life is at risk!
A malignant tumour is nothing like a benign one. A malignant tumour spreads to other sites of the body (which could include my brain!) but if it’s an innocent little benign one, the cells stay where they are and I am safe! Unfortunately, it’s a malignant one so it could have already spread like cancer through my body!
The pain from when the tumour was removed adds to the pain of the cosmetic surgery, resulting in Drake ‘angry’ Carter going absolutely crazy!
You’re not going crazy, you’re just mad!
Who said that? Oh dear I am going mad because being mad is similar to being crazy and I know that! These doctors are as stupid as I am in this situation.
You need to do something that will attract their attention … hmm … what to do. Shout! Scream! Beg for life! But … that wouldn’t work, would it?
Okay, Drake, just try something simple first. Lightly lift your little finger. That’s it, tense all your muscles … lift it … a twitch was my result! A stupid little twitch! No one would recognise my consciousness from a twitch!
Try again, Drake. Lift your forefinger this time. I became frustrated from being so tense and focused. I attempted to lift it carefully and resulted in pain as if my muscles were suddenly filled with lactic acid.
I screamed so I thought they could have realised. Unfortunately, I was screaming inside so no one heard me except my INSANITY! Then, to make it worse, the sound of the clock on the wall’s ticking became a constant stab at me. TICK, TOCK … TICK, TOCK!
Hmm … why is there water trickling down my face? I hope it is sweat! I sighed deeply … wait … I sighed! I SIGHED! Hopefully, they heard. I looked over at the doctors and they were talking about each other’s adopted child. They … did … not … notice! I’m going to have a nervous breakdown if this continues!
That’s it – I’m fed up with this! I’ll put all my force into my hand. All my energy has to go into this to save my life. My hand twitched and moved a few centimetres closer to my pocket. I caused my hand to twitch again until my hand slowly and cautiously twitched into my pocket where my pen was.
Concentrate now, Drake. Put all your energy into clicking the pen. I twitched so that my hand buried the pen. I then twitched my thumb to click the pen and a clicking sound filled the imitate silence.
The doctors looked up. Oh, salvation!
“Hmm … what does the notice board say about what time lunch break starts?” Doctor Gordon said and they spoke about food and how it affects the pleasure receptors in the brain: BORING! I actually thought they had noticed my pen clicking … I prayed in my mind for help.
“What’s that noise?” the female doctor asked.
“Oh, it’s just the heart monitor in the next room – we have to maintain the volume louder this year so we can hear it in the next room for people in comas.” Doctor Gordon replied.
A horrible, strong smell of deodorant drifted into my senses and the sound of heavy breathing obscured my listening senses. Doctor Gordon must be leaning over me to continue the ear operation! I assure you, a big, fat complaint will be printed on their records!
I felt a sharp stab of pain and twitched from the agony but he was only concentrating on my ear that he didn’t notice. He moved the sharp point vertically on my ear! My skin was screaming and throbbing!
The doctor continued the surgery. I experienced everything: every stab of pain, every area of skin permanently scarred by a sharp piece of surgical equipment. Would I die from the shock? I crossed my fingers and prayed to God that I would …

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –
Present day:

The gun was loaded with distinguish and the teenager’s look of hunger for violence sickened me.
“This may sound like a cliché to yuh, but, any famous last words yuh crazy freak, before I blow your brains across the floodplain.”
“Erm … well … just tell … hmm … well, … got any apple pie?” I stammered.
“Hurry up!”
“Just tell Drake that I love him … if he’s still aliv –“
The sound of gunpowder igniting erupted in a billowing bang that caused my heart to skip a precious beat … and … end it altogether –


I sighed. “What do you want now? Can you please stop bothering me?”
“I’ll stop bothering you when you say ‘yes’” Drake replied, putting his shaking arm nervously around my waist, which I instantly slapped away and he flinched.
“Why are you pushing this?” Tess asked.
“I just want to be with you – I’ll look a fool on my own.” Drake sat down at the table made of glass that sat upon a very thick layer of glass as the floor as was surrounded by windows made of … wait for it … glass!
I frowned deeply at him as he drummed his fingers against the glass, indicating I should sit down. I sighed even deeper than before and sat down on a chair (glass) beside him.
“You can go on your own because it will be just like a melancholy reflection of what your whole life will be like.” I said quirkily with a hint of relishing wit!
“Whoa, you are cruel but you put it smartly.” Drake smirked yet he looked hurt.
“’Intelligently’ would be a much better word.” I moaned.
“Can you please just come with me, I haven’t got all day to argue with you.” Drake unzipped his bag and took out a sandwich wrapped in foil.
“If you come to the dance with me, I’ll give you this …” Drake smirked.
“Excuse me? Why a food bribery?” I asked angrily even though I was secretly drooling inside my mouth and my stomach silently grumbled from starvation, despite the fact I only ate a 6-pound lasagne five minutes ago. I need food to survive … it’s just I have more than doctors recommend.
“You know you love food more than anything – in fact you loved it more than me when we went out with each other! When I asked if I could kiss you, you said you had a craving for apple pie!”
I laughed. “Yes, I desire devouring apple pie rather than going anywhere near your wet lips!”
“Hmm, I should stop licking my lips from now on,” Drake felt his lips, “Ah, I have chapped lips – great!”
“I thought so – they were a bit scaly.” I chuckled lightly.
“Are you comparing kissing me to the texture of a fish?” Drake asked with a frustrated tone.
“Fine … your lips were so soft, oh baby, oh baby.” I said sarcastically, laughing hysterically afterwards.
“Well, you … you … stunk – no, you smelled nice … you were mean! That’s it! You were mean!” Drake stammered.
“Mean!” I snapped, “Mean? Mean? MEAN? M-m-mean?” I snapped with my face really close to Drake’s.
Drake gulped. “Well … not really … you were … perfect … I suppose.” He whispered gently.
“Hmm, your voice doesn’t sound so squeaky when you whisper.” I laughed.
“That’s right – ruin the moment.” I frowned.
“No, I’m sorry. Thank you for saying I was so perfect. It means a lot to me … it really does.” I whispered gently but surprisingly a slightly lower voice than Drake’s: mine was a girl’s voice and Drake’s was in-between the light pitch for a girl and a deep, gravely voice of a boy.
“Wow – you can really flirt, cant you?” Drake asked, smiling and edging closer.
“I’m just getting started.” I leant in further and we were about to kiss but … Michael sat on the table.
“Hey, lovers. How is the kissing coming along?” Michael asked.
“What do you think?” Drake asked, bewildered and sarcastically.
“So, Tess … do you wanna go the dance … not with me, but just tag along with our lot?” Michael asked, winking at her.
“Definitely! I’ll meet you all up at about … seven-ish?” I asked, excitedly. I spotted Drake frowning and out of the corner of my eye I was sure I spotted a tear innocently slip down his face.
“I’ll see you guys later.” Drake got up and ran down the glass hallway, his shoes inhibiting a horrible squeaking sound against the glass from friction. The advantage of having a very thick glass floor is that if a droplet of water hits it, you can hear a quiet ‘ting!’ if you listen carefully: that’s what I heard. Drake was crying.


Okay, they should be here by now. Just keep calm. Why was my heart racing so much? Oh … I thought you fancied Drake, Tess! Why do you have a fascination with Michael, Tess! Why?
I was breathing heavily. I stared down at my dress – the one I usually wear on special occasions but the ‘layers of fat’ I had were shown by the large creases in the dress. It was a velvet colour and was annoyingly tight!
6:58 p.m. I have two minutes left until he comes to the door. Why am I worrying so much? If I were able to squeeze the perspiration from my hands it would fill a litre bottle!
The doorbell’s ringing sent a penetrating slice through all of my senses and I instantly ran through the porch and answered the front door – rather desperately.
“Hey, Tess. You ready?” Michael asked as he came into view when I opened the door.
“Yeah … yeah … erm, hi Michael! I’ll be right out, just give me a second, ok?” I said nervously.
I closed the door and mouthed ‘Oh my God’ and sighed deeply then opened the door again. “Are you ready to go to the dance?”


The music was deafeningly loud and every teenager in school used the music to dance in a variety of styles. Everyone was smiling gleefully from ear to ear, enjoying the fulfilment of their adolescence in one night of partying, drinking and trying to find a boyfriend or girlfriend.
There were numerous lights obscuring and encouraging the delightful, crazy atmosphere that was happening. A green light shone down on us from the North of the large room, a red light from the East, a blue light from South and a purple light from the West, rotating crazily, reflecting the atmosphere.
I sat on one of the chairs in the corner of the room, watching them all be so happy with their lives whilst I sat there depressed and alone. It was halfway through the night and Drake was ignoring me by talking to all the girls! I hate him for that!
Most of all, I watched Michael. He looked upset too but was still dancing like he had no care in the world.
Maybe everyone won’t talk to me because I’m so obese! That was it! That had to be the solution! I hated being so overweight! No wonder Drake hates me! I broke into meaningless tears and no one even looked over at me. I’ll show them, I’ll lose weight – and then they’ll talk to me.
The food was being laid out on the table and I couldn’t help but stare mindlessly at the contents in awe and wonder like a numinous experience but based on food.
Drake looked over at me and was smirking. Unfortunately, it was the smirk that he used when he was up to something … this cant be good.
“I say two people should go against each other and compete at eating the most!” Drake snapped and everyone was drunk so they nodded along mindlessly. Oh … dear.
“Who shall we get to compete? I think you should and…” Michael asked.
“Tess would be a good idea.” Drake smirked in the distance of the crowd.
I got up and thought, ‘what the Hell, just do it!’ I would win against Drake: the anorexic.
Throughout the night, we each ate one plate of food at a time and to make it a fair test, we both ate the same food and the same quantity. Firstly, were sausages and I ate them all without a fight. Secondly, were small slices of cake and I ate them quickly to mock Drake whilst he ate slowly with a disgusted expression on his face. Thirdly, were … chips! Aha! I would definitely win this time! Drake stared with a horrified expression on his face whilst I smirked. Obviously, I won! However, the comment afterwards was unnecessary and caused me to consider losing weight:
“The only reason she won is ‘cause she’s a fat creature that stuffs her face with a ton of lard everyday! She’s used to it!” Drake snapped without even making eye contact with me whilst everyone else that was cheering us on, burst into laughter. My eyes were wide with horror and I began to feel an urging pain in my stomach, the feeling of nausea and sickness overwhelmed me as I stared at the traitor before me.
Everyone began to chant ‘Lard girl!’ which caused me to break into excessive tears.
It was at that point that I grasped the red case in my hand and yanked it out of my pocket with impressive force at the speed of light and flicked it open.
“You! … You! You have ruined my life enough! Why … why can’t we start things up again, huh? Why?” I panted heavily.
“Because …” Drake shrugged, “… you’re crazy!” he snapped.
“I’ll press the button – I’m being serious! I’ll kill you … I’ll kill all of you!” I snapped, tears streaming down my pale, chubby face. Everyone backed away in horror.
“It’s just a red case – it’s harmless.” Drake told everyone surrounding the action.
“Yeah – but what’s inside the case!” I smirked, “As soon as I press that button – everyone will be blown to pieces!”
“Sure! Do you expect us to believe that?” Drake moaned but he didn’t seem too sure about what he said.
I knew the secret behind this red case, the problem is: the person whose fate depended on what this caused, didn’t know the secret or how her sister had ruined her life.
“One last chance, Drake.” I whispered.
“Wait, let me get this straight, you will blow us all up if I don’t go out with you?” Drake was exasperated and overwhelmed when he spoke a ridiculous structure of words.
I gave a curt nod.
“Then the answer is … no.” Drake sighed.
“What!” everyone who would soon be blown to pieces snapped in unison.
“Then say goodbye.” I whispered with a horrible smirk on my face that caused Drake to look at me in terror.
Everyone dived for protection: dived under chairs, tables and some tried the door that was locked – according to my plan. Everyone was waiting: waiting to die or waiting for hope that would never come.
I cautiously clicked the button and a countdown appeared on the screen within the case:


In ten seconds, everyone will pay!
In nine seconds …
Eight …
Seven … no more bullying!
Six more seconds until disaster!
5 … no more depression!
4 … finally happy!
3 … completely happy!
2 … a successful, amazing, tear-free lifestyle!
1 – almost there!
Bingo …
I closed my eyes and prayed that I would result in a better place but all I heard was a ‘ping!’ so I slowly yet cautiously opened my tear-filled eyes. A small red flag with an imbedded message in neat, black paint stated: ‘IT’S NOT TIME, TESS’.


“Yuh can stay here – the warehouse will be locked and boarded so yuh wont be able to escape. Yuh can’t eat, sleep or shout for help or the machinery attached to your wrists will pick it up and yuh and yuh will die and yuh friends … well, yuh don’t wanna know.” Cry threatened.
“What about … water?” I asked croakily from tiredness.
“Oh, we’ll leave a barrel of water on the other side of the room because we need yuh alive for the next part of our plan – if you can reach the water, of course. I may be cold-blooded but I’m not cruel, Drake.” Cry giggled light-heartedly but with meanness scattered across the pitch of his laugh, “good luck and good night. It’s gonna be a tough few days.”
Those were the words he said to me: the torturer threatened me and it wasn’t a lie either. The machinery attached to my wrists picked up anything I did.
I found it impossible not to sleep because … I love to sleep, eat and be merry! As the crazy saying goes! I’ve even thought of resulting in cannibalism often, but I believe that will just send me crazier than ever!

Day one:

No breakfast. No water. No salvation!
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and as the name of the meal states, you are breaking the fast and what a fast I’ve had! I couldn’t eat or else I’d be blown to pieces … or as Cry says.
I didn’t feel any cannibalistic feelings like taking a bite out my arm or eating a rat or something stupid like that! Who in the right mind would eat their own arm or have a craving for rat meat? Possibly a vampire but they do not exist, despite Tess’ lecture on how they do exist whilst we went out … all those many years ago.
However, I did feel ravenous for water and that barrel seemed like it was creeping further and further away from me. You know during a hot day you feel like drinking something fizzy when it doesn’t make you hydrated at all? Well, I bet you never had a craving for water – always coke or lemonade or whatever fizzy drink you desire.
The craving for water causes so much physical frustration to all your senses and your brain that needs water to function – well, one of the elements it needs to function. The feeling is like having surgery and that I have experienced and believe me, you never want it! Luckily, the doctor’s discovered I wasn’t completely unconscious and gave me a large sum of money so I didn’t inform anyone about it! So, believe me, it’s worth making that complaint because you could get money, a few extra CDs, another book, a discount or even enough food that could fit within three hampers!
Sometimes you don’t even realise the crucial elements that make up your life, for example, water, healthy food and time that may seem like stupid suggestions but they are here to save our lives, especially time, and make us live longer than we were originally expected, especially healthy food instead of pizza, Chinese takeaways that may seem a fulfilling experience but don’t benefit at all … unfortunately! Except, I’m one of those people that hate pizza and Chinese takeaways, not because I believe they taste horrible but because of the large bags of fat poured into making them like someone gathering all the elements, stirring them in a pot, cooking them and making a heart attack! Your life means something: you’re here for a reason!

Day two:

That water barrel seemed to have a more serious significance now that I was deprived for water for 48 hours. I felt dizzy and exasperated like every gasp was a Godsend. I was giddy and a strange nourishing feeling overwhelmed me: my hand was becoming different meals in my imagination and my bottom lip seemed to taste like cherries when I bit it.

Day three:

Think! Think! There must be a way to harness that water supply! Hmm … there could be a way that I could throw something sharp at it and it would break a hole so the water would flow out and reach me! Think! Think! Think! What sharp objects are nearby with the limited area you can reach?
I reached into my pocket in search for something and a sharp object pierced my finger. I suddenly noticed the colour of my jeans: dark blue … the ones I wore when I discovered Jasmine was a murderer. I found the knife I took and stared at it distinctively with a wide smile across my face.
I threw the knife at the water barrel and the wood was pierced into and water began trickling out, small amounts at first then a few gallons. I hurriedly stared around the room.
I suddenly spotted a long piece of wood that was carved in the shape of a vent. Life seems to be on my side, today!
I reached for it but the stupid chains were pulling me back. I edged forward and moved along the floor to try and reach what would save my life. However, the water was draining quite quickly out of the hole that was expanding.
Kathy and Tess came into my mind – all the fun times we had together. The thought of them then evaporated and was replaced by Michael’s voice insisting:
“Remember what I said to you all those years ago? ‘Drake, if you really want something, the pulse and power of everything in existence conspires to help you achieve it.’”
Michael’s encouraging inspiration influenced me to put more effort into getting that wood before the water runs out. I put all my energy into my movement and my muscles contracted and I grabbed it! I instantly swung it around and put it under the whole. Soon, the water was trickling down and the mouth for the little river I had made was … my mouth – ironically!
The water ran into my parched mouth and suddenly, my thirst for water had ceased and I was drinking the source of my survival! I was going to live!
I can live for weeks without food, so that wasn’t really much of a concern.

Day four:

A rat scurried across the floor and surprisingly I was drooling. I was so ravenously overwhelmed that any form of food source would satisfy me.
The rat seemed to formulate and conjure into a walking hamburger that made me look away from it and forget the strange fetish. I stared at the window and hoped that someone would open it, but no one did. No one came for me. No one would hear me cry for help because if I tried, I would die.
I looked down at the floor that was now drenched in water and was uncomfortable. I suddenly caught view of a gun. Cry must have left it there if I decided to kill myself. But I wouldn’t. I’m not stupid like Tess and Kathy who find their lives meaningless.

Day five:

That rat scurried by again today. That stupid rat was taking my entire senses hostage! Its flesh began to cause my flesh to creep because I was so ravenous that I needed to eat it. I haven’t eaten in weeks because I’m afraid of what even a chocolate bar would do. I believe that if I ate a chocolate bar, I would gain twenty pounds over night. It may sound preposterous but have you seen how much fat is in one little chocolate bar! Have you?
I conjured an idea, though. A devious, conniving plan: I grasped the nearby gun and pointed it … not at the rat … at the window.
“I’ll be free, Michael, I want to be free.” I whispered before I shot rapidly at the window. Hopefully, that would attract attention and I would be saved in no time. Just you wait, Michael. I’ll either be joining you in Heaven or Hell or I’ll be free with a family and children. Just you wait, Michael. Just you wait.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

During the fifth day …

The bullet from the Winchester penetrated through my thick clothes that slightly decreased the speed of the bullet, but not much. The bullet then made its way through the contraptions of the watch in my pocket, which I checked the time from earlier on my way to saving Drake. The bullet then attempted to penetrate through the large insulating layer of fat protecting my crucial inner organs. I felt the bullet rush through the fat but surprisingly and luckily got lodged within it!
After all those years of bullying, eating enough food to feed a whole army and feeling so self-conscious: my obesity saved my life!
I gasped for air and felt a feeling of nausea that overwhelmed me. My side was throbbing and my hammering hollow heart howled in horror. Another bewildering feeling pounced on me: COLD-BLOODED ANGER!
I leapt out with the thought of knocking that teenager to the ground! My fists were throbbing with anxiety as I forcefully pounded the teenager in the face and more blood appeared on his face and my fist.
Another bang erupted and smashed the sickening silence to segments and the silhouettes from our quivering bodies only added to the anticipation of the to-be-murder. The summering silence was torn just like the skin that the bullet tore to pieces.
I fell back and hit the floor with a ‘thud’ whilst the teenager screamed in agony and fired continuously and rapidly at my weak knees, inflicting pain.
“I gave yuh a chance but yuh didn’t take it. Now, you can tell Drake in Hell that you betrayed him.” I saw him take out a device through my squinting eyes, “Say goodbye to your boyfriend.” The teenager chuckled lightly and held the device in his right hand near the building.
“What … is …it?” I asked and gasped rapidly.
“Your boyfriend and the building will be blown up and I’m guessing you’re not going to be getting up soon – are yuh? You will all be out of my life in …” He looked at the device and suddenly, from nowhere, the ripping sound of bullets being continuously fired cut through the tension-filled air like a guillotine. Whilst Cry was looking at the device, bullets shot through his head and he instantly dropped to the ground after an exasperating gasp of air. Another bullet shot through the explosive device and it ignited, blowing into pieces but the explosion was harmless to me, it burnt Cry’s hand though.
Finally, the illegitimate maggot that has caused problems and fear in our lives has deceased.
But who fired that gun?
“Tess, are you alright?” a familiar voice snapped out for me.
I heard the rattling of chains: Drake was alive.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

The air from my lungs was escaping rapidly, which wasn’t good for oxygen transfer through the placenta to the baby. The baby. Was there anything wrong with the baby?
Hailey continuously banged against the door, demanding her baby back. The baby has seen its father so I can finally be free of his insistence. Can you help me Michael? Can you help me get through this?
My eyes were suddenly filled with water and itched like crazy! I was dizzily exasperated and my arms were quivering. Make it stop! I’ve changed my mind! I don’t want this to happen! I love my child and I loved the father so why did I do it? Why did I decide to do this? Breathe in … breathe out … breathe in … just remember that and you and your baby will be fine.
I reached into my pocket and pulled out a bottle of alcohol and knocked it back … wait … what on Earth am I doing? I’ll kill my baby even more by drinking that poison! Why did I do this? Michael, tell me, why did I do this? Tell me!
I broke into tears and placed the baby down next to her father. Hailey’s shrill voice annoyed me. She keeps complaining that she never wants her child to meet her father. I understand in some form why she wouldn’t want it to meet him and she never will anyway: he’s dead.
Michael … why did I take those pills? Why am I trying to kill the only essence of your existence? Why on Earth am I having an abortion? Why did I take these pills in front of you? Am I trying to make you feel guilty?
Michael … why did I want an abortion?
I felt a cold chill sweep over me. Dizziness increased, dominating into a collapse. I was unconscious. I was murdering my child. I’m not a nice person … I don’t have a kind, loving character. I’m a poignant character without the wit. I’ve murdered an old man and a baby – my own baby!
People would classify me as a traitorous murderer who is suicidal. I am taking pills to kill myself, which in turn would kill the baby so it is sort of like an abortion. I’m ruining two lives: one, a hopeless wreck that can’t achieve anything and the other, a new life waiting to be free and live a poignant-free life with happiness written on every slab of the right path whilst I’m walking on a path surrounded by fire … to Hell.
Why do I have to do this? Please, someone help me!
“Help me, someone, please! Call an ambulance! I … I – I … think … I’m … in … labour!” I gasped for air whilst exclaiming for assistance that would never come.
Finally, the door burst open and Hailey barged in on her wheelchair because apparently her house fell off a cliff. She was on the sofa at the time and fell into the sea but somehow the bones in her legs snapped in four. She was followed by Jasmine lightly chuckling. Jasmine is a cruel, heartless character that has complex qualities because she was once supportive, now as she approaches a responsible adult, she’s failing on the realism of care and consideration.
Hailey saw that my water had broke and forgot about her baby.
“Quick, ring the hospital – call for an ambulance!” Hailey exclaimed to Jasmine.
“Do I have to? It’s so cosy on these pews.” Jasmine said as she sat down on one of the church pews.
“You heartless witch!” Hailey exclaimed. She rolled her wheelchair over to the back of the church, which was guarded by a huge cross with Jesus attached. She grabbed the phone attached to the wall and frantically dialled the numbers but the number ‘9’ is always at the end of the phone. Why have the emergency services at the end of the phone?
I was now screaming in agony, calling Michael’s name. I was dying inside. My baby was being born but I thought it wasn’t alive …

Two Years Later …

v Employment

v Marriages

v Crime

v Exams

v Disease


/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

When someone is depressed, they find it difficult to eat, sleep and read. Eating is my crucial task in life, except that I increase the limit. Eating has become a boring thing to me now … I spot a chocolate gateau and find myself feeling ill and not wanting to eat it. So, I’ve lost five stone in the last year and I did weigh fifteen stone so … that’s … hmm … ten stone!
During my nights trying to harness my subconscious and finally get the sleep I need but thoughts of the past chase me in my dreams and cause me to awake screaming with perspiration and fear.
Reading used to be an enjoyed hobby where I would lock away the trouble in my life and welcome myself to a new, exciting place where nothing involving discomfort can devour your life. However, halfway through reading a page, I break into tears and the book and the new world is ruined.
Being confined in this position is nerve-racking and causes me to go insane when I can’t reach anything. Yes … I’m in a wheelchair and “I’m lucky to be alive” doctor Gordon said, but I believe the complete opposite. Who would want to live in a wheelchair rather than die where insanity can’t hunt you down and capture you?
Today at work was a disaster, as are all the days of my pointless life.
“Tess, can you get up and turn the photocopier on for me?” Harold Stick, my boss, said and chuckled lightly afterwards. My boss is a head teacher because I teach now. Teaching is twice as difficult when you have to roll on your wheelchair to tell students off at the back of the classroom:
“So, does anyone know our normal body temperature?” I asked, pointing with a large lecture stick at the diagram showing the effects of homeostasis.
Morris, a tall, mean teenager of 14-years-old, put his hand up.
“Yes, Morris?” I asked with a dull, boring tone. The enthusiasm that once cloaked my character has disappeared.
“One hundred degrees Celsius.” Morris said nodding and giving the other boys on singular desks around him a high five, chuckling modestly.
“No, that is definitely incorrect. If we were at 100 degrees Celsius then we would get heat stroke and eventually die. Homeostasis wouldn’t have a chance!” I replied as if he was stupid, “anyone else?”
“Are yuh saying that’s not right? Are yuh?” Morris got up out of his seat and looked at me with angry eyes.
“Yes, I am. Tell me, Morris, did your dad like to call himself ‘Cry Cold’?” I asked.
“I’ve never met my father and if yuh ever speak of him again, I’ll knock yuh head to the ground, clear?” Morris snapped.
“That’s a tempting offer but I’d prefer to give you an after school detention for threatening me.” I sighed and pointed to the door, “Wait outside, I’ll talk to you after class.” Morris walked out and gave me a look of disgust. I looked up at him with sympathy.
“Now, tonight’s homework … history … what’s done is done, so there’s no need for homework related to that … geography … rivers, coasts and glaciers – they’re all natural so it’s unnatural to provide homework to do with it … maths … gibberish, gibberish, gibberish … you don’t really need to know area and perimeter when you have a future, do you? And … erm … what is that subject involving reading and our language …” I couldn’t even remember that subject because of stupid, bloody depression and everyone stared at me as if I was a toddler asking what its name is. “So, no …” I suddenly spotted something out of the corner of my eye: something at the window. Why was it here? There’s nothing here to make notes on,
“… Homework tonight.”
The head teacher suddenly walked in and let Morris out.
“Mrs Calamber, could I speak to you for a few minutes, please?” Harold Stick said and smirked at me as if it was something good for him and bad for me. Harold had a short grey beard and a fluffy grey moustache and always wore a round black hat: his appearance reminded me of Terry Pratchett, the popular, witty author.
“Okay, that’s fine.” I pushed myself out of the room to follow him and looked at him in bewilderment as he led me into the hallway.
“Now, you’ve been a teacher here for, what, a year and a half? Well, we’ve found a replacement … someone who actually has qualifications like GCSEs and A Levels. We would like to wish you –“
“Don’t throw that crappy insolence at me – I’ll get GCSEs, just you wait! I don’t care about you or anyone else in this school but I care about having a job to provide for my child and me because I’m fed up with escaping the stress at home and then coming here to be bullied about my condition! I will take them – I’ll be back soon, Harold, so stuff you!” I exclaimed and rolled down the corridor, not saying another word.
I remembered one thing: “The source of depression is the actions you inflict on the balance for your life.” This was Michael’s sort of like ‘motto’ because every time someone was depressed, he would say that to try and cheer you up but it always made you feel a lot worse … you were too shy to tell him so, especially Kathy who had no confidence at all.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I was pressed against Josh Hunter, a new male actor, and the setting was in a woodland area where he was about to propose to me and we would run away, having an affair.
“Please, Samantha, think about it? I know you come from a rich, upper class family whilst I’m a poor beggar on the street that is in love with your heart and soul and wants to spent the rest of my life making you feel the same way.” Josh said passionately.
“But … I don’t understand any of this … we’ve ran away from home to be together but where do we stay for the rest of our lives?” I asked.
Josh looked over at a hollow tree.
“You must be bloody joking! I’m not a troll!” I snapped.
“Didn’t you bring any money? You’re the rich one, Samantha.” Josh sighed heavily and then broke the connection we had and threw wood on the fire.
“I couldn’t get to my room … he was waiting for me there.” I sighed in unison to Josh’s heavy breathing.
“The stalker? I can’t believe he came back again after all we talked through. I threatened the freak and still he came back again and again!” Josh exclaimed.
“You didn’t … on that drunken night that you wont talk about … did he … did you … do you know what I’m talking about?”
“Yes as an answer to that question or yes to that you … and he …” I could see the anger building up inside him.
“Yes … to both.” I gulped.
The tension was thickening so a guillotine would be a perfect apparatus to use at this point to cut through the tension again.
“Kimberley and Hunter, hurry up: finish your social rubbish and get on set! We haven’t got all day to make a masterpiece!” I instantly pulled back the curtain and escaped onto the third stage of five on a pentagon. “Remember, for the last time, I want you further downstage for this scene, Kimberley!” the director snapped.
The floodlight was switched on and the stage was flooded with a bright, calming limelight.
“Okay, forget about what we were talking about and act! I don’t want my movie debut ruined by another problem with my husband.” I whispered vigorously.
“But why don’t you leave him and run away with me?” Josh asked, “You said that it’s strange being married to him because one day he abuses you and Malorie then the next day he’s the perfect husband? Don’t you get fed up with that? It’s like that girl in the papers.”
“What girl in the papers?” I asked.
“You know, haven’t you read it? It said a young girl and her sister, but I think she’s dead now, were abused by their parents and during a police inspection of homes in the area of the murder a few years ago, they found a suicide note that showed that her parents abused her, so they were arrested.” Josh said slowly as if he was one of those people that told crime stories for a living.
It was like a commentary of my life flashing before my eyes like traffic lights: the red light represented the bad parts, the green light, which was very dim, reflected the good things in my life and orange represented in-between. That commentary was definitely represented a red light.
“What was the name of the sister?” I asked shakily.
“Oh, I think her name sounded like a diamond of some sort … cant really remember.” Josh replied.
“And … from Act 2 … ACTION!” The director snapped.
Our performance was ‘Blood Brothers’ by Willy Russell; it’s a melodramatic masterpiece! I’m playing Linda whilst Josh is playing Mickey. I faked happiness on the outside whilst inside I was beginning to have a mental breakdown and no one even noticed!
“Tch … you didn’t tell me it was gonna be a load of fields.” I moaned, as Linda.
“I didn’t tell y’ nothin’. I didn’t ask y’ to come, y’ followed me.” Josh, as Mickey, walked away from me.
“Mickey, Mickey … I’m stuck …” I held out my arms helplessly, “Me foot’s stuck. Honest.” I whined.
Josh came over to me and timidly took my wrist and ineffectually pulled.
“Mickey, I think y’ might be more successful if you were to sort of put your arms around here.” I put my hands on my waist to indicate that I wanted Josh, playing Mickey, to put his hands on my waist, “Oh Mickey, be gentle, be gentle …”
“CUT! Kathy, I want more expression when you say that. You’re supposed to be trying to reel Mickey in and make him like you, not moan at him about it! However, you did perform confidently. We’ll pick up here on Monday.” The director exclaimed at me angrily.

“Drake, I’m home. Where’s Malorie? I have a present for her.” I sighed as I opened the door and burst into the living room, which was poorly decorated with only a sofa to occupy it. The window was decorated in a thin layer of green mould because no one bothered to clean it. The door was wood, which was poor condition, as was the sofa.
“She’s under my fists for being a disobedient little brat that deserves to die!” Drake exclaimed. He was sprawled across the floor with his fist raised above the crying face of my daughter.
“Get off her! Why are you doing this? I can’t take it anymore and I’m pretty sure she cant either!” I snapped as I ran toward him, throwing him off her, “It’ll be alright, Malorie.” I picked Malorie up and rocked her in my arms.
“She’s only bloody two-years-old! What are you trying to do, huh? Why are you trying to ruin our lives? I had enough of this when I was growing up and I got this compared to it from Josh because it was in the paper!” I exclaimed and kicked Drake in his huge stomach.
“What’s for … dinner?” Drake asked, coughing.
“Don’t you think you’ve had enough food?” I sighed.
Drake suddenly stood up with his fists raised and ran towards me so that I backed away in horror against the door.
My mind was foggy and developed into a blank understatement. I was dizzy and was overwhelmed by a feeling similar to morning sickness!
I walked out of the room with Malorie in my arms. I hope I never see that traitor again but wedlock is forceful. I only married him for the money and now that there is none left and we are suppressed by poverty, what am I to do? Living with Drake has its mundane predictabilities.

/N /
- The Stalker –

For many years I have watched these people who have suffered from depression and suicidal urges. I tried to determine why it was happening to them and what I could do to end their pain. The books I found were mostly statistical listings of who took their own life, their income brackets, and vocations like the newspaper article about Kathy’s past and the obituaries e.g. Theo, Michael etc. Personal accounts were specific to their situation and recounted little insight into why this was happening to them, or what I could do to end the intense pain.
They are, what some would say, mildly manic-depressive and have a family history that would support such a conclusion, especially Kathy form her abusive past. But, this is not my story. I need help to understand what they are going through but when you tell someone their problems, they lie about the conversation being confidential!
Most people who are suicidal are also depressed. The two prime reasons that a person becomes depressed, are a loss of control, over their life situation and of their emotions, and secondly a loss of a positive sense of their future (loss of hope). Any therapy, which is to be effective in reversing our depressed state, and the resultant suicidal urges, will have to help us regain control, and help us regain hope.
Being depressed causes them to narrow their view of the world around them to such an extent that reality becomes distorted. The negative in our lives is constantly reinforced and the positive around us is discounted as being irrelevant, or even non-existent. Options to help solve their problems are rejected as having no merit, until it seems as if there is no possible solution.
An unrelenting and oppressive sadness comes over us, which causes a very real pain, as if the pain of the sudden loss of a sister (Amethyst) or husband (Michael) stays with them for weeks, months, and even years. It is as if they are trapped in a dark cave or possibly a tunnel that runs only from their constant pain to somewhere near hell, with no exit to heaven and no exit to joy. We begin to think that there is no relief and that this pain will never end. Tomorrow will be the same, or worse. Death may be the only solution! – It was.
Suicide is not a solution; it is an end before a solution can be found. It cannot be considered an option, for an option denotes they have a choice and death robs them of both: option and choice. Death is an irreversible, inevitable act that does not end the pain, for it remains in those who are left behind. Even people who are totally alone (E.g. Tess), and take their own lives, transfer their pain to those of us in society: who do care.
Many people have suicidal thoughts at some time during their lives. For most the thought is fleeting, happening after a major life loss, or at some point in life where they perceive the future as becoming hopeless. For others, life is not quite so kind, they may have a strong genetic propensity to become depressed, a chemical imbalance, or a series of unfortunate life experiences may eventually end in depression (Drake and Tess). Still others have much to do with causing their own pain by using an unrealistic cognitive thought process and having expectations in life that are not possible to achieve like being a teacher without GCSEs or a degree, being a fulltime actress when your husband is abusive. Whatever the cause, we are all at risk of having strong suicidal urges when it seems as though the future has become hopeless.
Pregnancy caused depression to increase. The urge for food after the mobile phone conversation with Tess sent Drake Carter into a risky phase where he was developing toward Tess’ weight – he was never anorexic again – causing him to be depressed. The depression affected Tess when she was forced into disability, causing her urge for food to … disappear.
There is no class or type of person that is exempt from having suicidal thoughts. Doctors, therapists, and teenagers from all walks of life, are all high on the percentage lists of completed suicide. Depression is not easy to escape from, as you find when you understand what these people were going through … before they took the end before the solution.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

The creamy, irrevocably layered with the calm caramel and the crunchy chocolate, burying a delicious crunchy layer of honeycomb dazzled my taste buds. I rested the packet of 6 chocolate bars on my stomach and stared down at them with joy but tears dripped down my face because I was a fat slob when two years ago I was as thin as a rake.
The daughter on my lap frantically grasped for a chocolate bar and I hesitantly pushed her away and she fell back onto a cushion. She laughed gleefully. I smiled as a reflection of her happiness. I threw the chocolate bars onto the floor as I got up and scooped my daughter off the sofa with my strong arms and held her close as she drooled all over my shoulder.
“Malorie, this is my favourite shirt.” I giggled.
“Hmm … can I hold Malorie for a while, Drake?” Kathy asked.
“Not yet – she’s happy with me. I love her so much – she looks a lot like me.” I smiled at her as she giggled whilst I held her up.
Malorie had gleaming blue eyes and short, blonde hair: she didn’t have much hair at all! She was wearing a shirt that stated: ‘I’m hungry’. My brother, Jack, gave me that shirt and some others and he simply said: ‘I’m biggerer than those!’ And, of course, ‘biggerer’ was not a word but it made me giggle when he said it.
Malorie’s small body shook when I held her high and she screamed so I lowered her down and hugged her so that her head lay against my shoulder. She suddenly stopped crying and closed her eyes.
“Kathy – look! She’s falling asleep on me!” I whispered ecstatically.
“Why are you a different person today?” Kathy asked suspiciously from the sofa on the other side of the room. It was only a one-room apartment so everything was crammed into one room.
“What do you mean, dearest?” I asked in a confounded tone.
“Yesterday you were threatening my daughter and ignoring me. Today, you look at my daughter like a jewel or diamond that is precious to you. What on Earth are you playing at?” Kathy said, flustered with overwhelming anger for some reason.
“Don’t you mean, our child?” I asked.
“Yeah … sure.” Kathy said sarcastically.
“Why did you drag sarcasm on that?” I asked suspiciously.
“Sarcasm? I never use sarcasm.” Kathy replied with yet more sarcasm.
“You just did!”
“Just did what?”
“You replied sarcastically! Tell me something … is Malorie my child?”
There was a long, awkward break of hesitation.
“Is she? Is she? Kathy, tell me!” I snapped.
“ … No …”
“Malorie isn’t your child.” Kathy replied uneasily. She got up and made her way to the door.
“Well then, whose child is she?” I asked.
“Malorie … well …” Kathy tried to take her from me and I turned away from her, “Give me my daughter!” Kathy snapped.
“NO! If she isn’t mine at least let me see her!” I exclaimed and tears began to hopelessly stream down my pale, chubby face.
“GIVE ME MY DAUGHTER!” Kathy snapped and leapt at me, trying to snatch her.
Malorie began to scream at a high, deafening pitch that reflected the agonising pitch of a radio not in tune mixed with the highest note on a piano.
“Give me my daughter!” she snapped, “… or I wont tell you who the father is.” Kathy whispered.
I threw Malorie against Kathy’s chest and she tried to quiet her down.
“So, who’s the father?” I asked quietly.
“The father is Michael.”
“But … he’s dead!”
“She was conceived two years ago when he was alive!” Kathy snapped as if I had no common sense to occupy me.
“Then why am I even looking after her if she isn’t mine!” I explained, confounded. I put my hands against my face to reflect how perplexed and angry I was and stormed across the room, breathing heavily with fearful anxiety.
“You can piss off then if you don’t care! I want a divorce as soon as possible!”
“A divorce?”
“Yes! I never want to see your illegitimate, fat face ever again!” Kathy exclaimed and with Malorie in her arms, she stormed out of the room.
I was alone. My (biased) daughter was gone. I would soon lose my wife … and my life. The dark cloud of depression soon loomed over me. My life was completely useless. Why am I even here?
I collapsed onto the sofa.
A throbbing pain suddenly shot up my right arm and my heart felt as if my veins were strangling it. I fell back against the pillow that Malorie was once drooling on, clutching where my heart is. I felt systole. My body completely shut down.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

Okay … Science … hmm … what do I need to revise? Hopefully not the whole book! Okay, Tess, focus! Photosynthesis … glucose is converted into many elements to increase the rate of photosynthesis, for example, glucose is converted into cellulose for building up cell walls and … that TV seems to be getting closer … glucose is combined with nitrates to form amino acids and … someone is talking to me on the computer: oh, why is this so difficult?
Because you were expelled for being classified that you didn’t care about school because you didn’t speak! They actually thought you had attitude! It’s not like I was wearing my daughter’s shirt!
As a result, I was sprawled across the bed watching television. An hour of ‘Friends’ then thought, I’ll revise now but then ‘Scrubs’ was on next so I thought: stuff it! But I couldn’t focus. Past events began to creep back into my mind … I was a teenager again and Drake and I were kissing in the corner of my room with no care in the world, my heart hammering against my quivering chest mundanely. I don’t even know where he is now. I don’t even have clear memories of him. All I have are photographs and they open a disturbing world in your subconscious, semiconscious and ruin your conscience, believe me! Apparently he got married but he didn’t invite me to the wedding! After the history we had, he didn’t even have the dignity to invite me!
I threw the books across the bed and jumped into my wheelchair. I rolled over to the set of drawers and opened the top one. I pulled out a set of letters that depicted unspoken secrets: all from Drake. Splotches of blood were scattered across the letters from when I used to self-harm. The penknife stared blankly up at me with a frightening reflection of my face upon its sharp, thin metal conveyor belt that would destroy every skin cell it sliced and kill some red blood cells that carried precious oxygen.
I picked up my old friend and enemy, the penknife, and stared at it dismissively but the past was a stalker and crept into my mind and soul and began to break it down: began to metaphorically break cells down like malaria. Another tear streamed down my face and hit the metal that mixed with the dry blood still left on the knife from previous, depressive years.
I couldn’t revise.
Exam day came and my mind was completely blank.
The first question of my double science GCSE paper was ‘Kathryn is obese. Give a definition for obesity.’ I knew the answer to that! Obesity is when you are 20% or more over the recommended weight. Yes! Two marks already gained! The next question was: ‘Describe the action of particles during conduction’ and I replied: ‘the particles gain kinetic energy and … I don’t care!’ I got a grade C for science, surprisingly enough!
Next, I took a history GCSE paper and all I did was get depressed so I drew Drake’s name in different styles and font within a heart. I got an unclassified GCSE, of course because all I wrote after that was: ‘the Plains Indians were very nomadic, savage people who hunted the buffalo that were crucial for their survival.’
All my GCSEs, I failed. I was ‘kicked out’ of the school because I wasn’t a reasonable teacher. I was only hired because my husband bribed the head teacher to get me a job there but we don’t talk anymore. I have to care for our daughter under wedlock that doesn’t mean anything to my husband because we don’t see each other but don’t want a divorce. Confounding, eh?
I had no job. No money. No husband. My son was at school: I was alone.
The penknife had a love affair with my skin again and the days began to have a darker turning …

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I scanned the apartment listings in the newspaper at The Script café. I found a perfect apartment: two rooms available; child’s small room available; larger adult room available next door; twenty pounds lent for a week.
I arrived for the roommate interview and it was murder attempting to get Malorie up the stairs in a pushchair! People may say ‘it’s not like you’re climbing Mount Everest’ when you attempt something simple but if I were to use a simile to describe this, I would say it’s like climbing Mount Everest!
The apartment was amazing! It was huge with two bathrooms, four bedrooms and a large, modern kitchen! I pushed Malorie in and a woman came out in a wheelchair.
“Good afternoon, you must be the girl that’s applying for the apartment and who is this?” the woman began to ridiculously use baby talk to Malorie.
“She’s my daughter, Malorie.” I replied.
“She’s lovely! I have a daughter too. Carrie, come in, please.” The woman exclaimed.
A young girl of about fourteen-years-old walked in with long, brown hair with streaks of blonde scattered along the curls. She was reasonably thin and seemed to be gloomy because she was wearing black clothes and black makeup around her eyes, including black eyeliner. She had dark jeans on and a black shirt that stated: ‘ATTITUDE!’ in blood red writing.
“I hope she won’t disturb you whilst you stay here.” The woman said.
“Visa versa.” I giggled.
“So … typical interview questions … let’s start off with your name.” The woman said. She sat down at the pine wood table in the centre of the room and indicated I sit on a seat opposite her – so I did and pushed the pushchair over so that it was next to the table.
“Oh, my name is Kathy.” I replied.
“I’m going to need a last name.”
“Oh, Kathy Kimberley, I know it has a horrible rhyme to it.”
“Ah, alliteration is great though, isn’t it?” the woman replied.
“Wait …” we both said in unison.
“I can’t believe this – it has been so long! Two years!” Tess said ecstatically.
“Yeah … so long. How has life been for you over the last two years? Still … you know … depressed?” I asked uneasily.
“Well, with Carrie here …” Tess replied.
“Yes, mum. Why are you including me in this conversation?” Carrie asked gloomily.
“Why don’t you go to your room, I’ll send you something to eat in a minute.” Tess replied in a frustrated, worried tone.
“I don’t want to eat anything. I want my m …” Carrie said sympathetically and Tess leapt up and instantly grabbed her crutches leaning against the table and grabbed her by her arm with one hand whilst the other was supporting herself, leading her into the kitchen.
“Listen, you, I thought we had a deal!” Tess whispered sharply and harshly, probably hoping that I couldn’t hear her but unfortunately I did and began to work the predicament out. Life has its unfortunate, inevitable predictabilities and lying is an uncompromising, irrevocable one.
“I don’t wanna do this anymore, I wanna see my mum!” Carrie whispered vigorously.
“Well, you cannot see your mother you insolent, irrevocably irritating little rat! I am your mother from now on, understand me?” Tess whispered shrilly.
“Is there a problem?” I asked.
“No, no, Carrie is just being a little ratty, you know what I mean … you have a daughter.” Tess smiled warily.
“She’s only two and she actually is my daughter.” I complained.
“What do you mean by that?” Tess replied shrilly.
“Well, unless that huge stomach of yours in high school and college was fourteen-year-old Carrie here then you have some explaining to do. There’s only six years difference! That’s insane!” I snapped.
“Alright … she’s not my daughter. I found her lying in a ditch on my way home from the school. She was dying. I had to help her. We had a deal. Her mother is in poverty and cannot care for her.” Tess looked down in shame whilst I got up with my hands placed on my hips to show stress and frustration with what Tess was doing. She lied to me. She has never lied to me.
“I’ve just escaped form one liar, I don’t want to collide with another one!” I snapped.
“Who’s the other liar?” Tess asked.
“My ex-husband … well, he’s still my husband, we’re …not divorce yet.” I replied and sighed deeply. I sat back down and stared dismissively into the distance, thinking of him.
“Oh, who is your husband? I see you didn’t invite me to the wedding.” Tess captured my previous position of placing my hands on my hips and stared down at me with a face reflecting exclamation of anger.
“I haven’t contacted you in two years. I didn’t know if you had the same number.” I moaned.
“Fine. You could have at least tried to contact me.” Tess complained.
“I wanted to but I wasn’t sure whether you’d accept talking to me.” I sighed even deeper than before.
“Because … well … I have been married to Drake for two years.” I instantly got up and grabbed the pushchair in unison to when Tess’ face had no emotion.
“You … you … and Drake? What were you thinking? Why did you marry him when you knew that I treasured him? Why? Huh? Why?” Tess was frighteningly going mad.
“I only married him …” I gulped, “for the money, really.”
“But … for money? … He has a better personality than anyone I know and he’s reasonably good looking now that he had his ear pinned back because before he was a freak but now …”
“But now he’s an abusive, obese drunk that threatens my two year old daughter!” I snapped: I was obviously displaying anger against the trouble Drake has inflicted.
“He’s what? He’s obese? After all those insults of me being a lard girl, he becomes fat while I can’t even look at food anymore?” Tess was breathing heavily and chuckled lightly as if to say: ‘in your face, Drake’. She fell back onto the chair she was previously sitting on.
“He’s enthusiastic now, too.” I added to the suspense that Tess was suffering from.
“Enthusiastic? Drake? You must be joking.” Tess giggled uneasily.
“It’s as if you’ve all swapped personalities.” Carrie smirked.
Tess and I stared at her.
“I read your Year Book, Tess, I found out about what your friends were like. That Kathy person, she was shy and suicidal … erm … Drake, he was an anorexic with no self-esteem … Tess, you were obese, enthusiastic and quite destructively violent. That Michael person, he …”
“Don’t say that name.” I complained rather quickly and sharply. I gulped uneasily and an individual tear streamed down my moderately attractive face.
“Why what’s wrong with saying Michael? Michael, Michael, Michael. I don’t care!” Carrie moaned eerily and departed from the room.
Every time she said that name, I felt as if a set of poniards were diving into his heart and tearing out the memories to replace them with pain.
“Do I get the apartment or what?” I snapped gloomy.
“What?” Tess replied in a confounded tone.
“DO I GET THE APARTMENT OR WHAT?” I exclaimed dissonantly.
“Yes, yes, you get the apartment.” Tess replied.
“Where’s my room?”
“Erm … Carrie, where is …”
“Where is my room?” I moaned like a stressed teenager exclaiming to his or her parents to get out of his or her room, like parents always irritatingly do, it’s an inevitable thing. Except, when my parents came into my room, they didn’t want to watch TV or chat about my mistakes, they abused me, which destroyed the wall of self-esteem that was gradually building throughout my childhood. I stood my ground as a result: I ran away and it was the best choice I ever made.
“I’ll show you to it, ok?” Carrie moaned.
“Fine, just be quick before Malorie awakens.” I pushed the pushchair in the direction she was taking me. She came to a door that stated ‘KEEP OUT!’
“Oh, and another thing, stop trying to steal my gloominess.” Carrie smiled at me to show she was joking and I smiled uneasily back at her. I was only gloomy because the memories were extracting the life out of me.
She opened the door and led me into a room that had a four-poster bed, a varnished pine chest of drawers and a desk with stationary in pots to occupy it. It was like living in a house of luxury, like Buckingham Palace but not as cherished and richly decorated.
The walls …
I gasped when I saw the walls. Every area of the wall was not decorated with a welcoming creamy colour of wallpaper or splashed with calm, innocent quantities of paint. The wall … was decorated with photographs. Completely smothered in photographs!
The photographs depicted group photos at the end of the school year, all Tess’ friend’s graduation photographs (excluding me) and the main picture theme was Drake and Tess together. She must be seriously obsessed or suppressed with loneliness.
“Tess, why have you stuck photos on the wall – they’re not decorations.” I chuckled.
“You spend a night in there and you’ll realise why!” Tess called from the next room.
“Here, Malorie, this is your new home.” I said enthusiastically to my baby daughter who grinned back at me from the pushchair. I lifted her out and hugged her, placing her down on the bed.

- The Stalker –

I listened intently to the INTERVIEW WITH A FAMOUS SUICIDE SURVIVER on BBC1 as a famous actress appeared on screen: a famous actress that I have to keep a very close eye on. I’m surprised she actually appeared on a television programme when she knows I’m watching her … very closely.

“So, Kathy Kimberley, you are a full-time actress who has performed theatrically displaying a memorable, moving performance as Linda in ‘Blood Brothers’ and starred in numerous popular films: ‘Cirque Du Freak’, ‘Double or Die’, ‘Endymion Spring’ and displayed a chilling performance in ‘Stephen King’s The Dark Half’ that won you an Oscar, making you a three –time Oscar*** winner. Today, you are on the BBC channel for an ‘INTERVIEW WITH A FAMOUS SUICIDE SURVIVER’. This is a lesson for those depressed victims out there: don’t try this at home.”
“Yeah, I have experienced problems like that.” The victim said fretfully.
“Don’t talk yet, save it for the questions!” the interviewer laughed lightly, “Firstly, does your depression, that develops into suicidal thoughts, affect your acting career?”
“Well, recently, I’ve been seeing someone who also has an acting career whilst I was under wedlock to an abusive, obese monster that put me at knife’s edge.” The victim complained enthusiastically.
“Whoa, that was a lot of information in ten seconds. Next question, do you have any past injustices?” the interviewer asked.
I nearly fell off my chair at that point from anxiety. Would she admit to her past? The murders? The mistakes? The problems? Hmm … I wonder. I silently giggled to myself.
The victim smiled uneasily and eerily, not sure whether to answer the uncompromising, agonising question that would have her behind bars in seconds and her life would instantly crumble to pieces!
“I … erm … I’m the girl in the papers that was abused throughout her childhood. I left a suicide note. I would go to West Park during the evenings and try to hang myself on the rusty old pole there. Anyone watching, this is not an encouragement. Do not try to commit suicide … it will only resolve in disaster, like starring in this program.” The victim laughed in unison to the interviewer but they both had different laughs at different pitches.
“How did you resolve it?”
“I ran away from home at a young age.”
“At what point did your depression reach a climax?”
“My depression reached a climax when my sister faked her death and then died afterwards. She left behind a sort of red case that would usually hold a ring but instead held an explosive that set off in unison with the volcanic eruption we experienced. Well, we didn’t experience it, it erupted in a different country but we were showered with ash and lava. My depression increased its climax when my husband, Michael, deceased two years earlier.” The victim spoke quickly, sharply and displayed a climax and anticlimax of wit. She was revealing a little too much information … that’s a little apprehensive …
“How did they both die?”
“Isn’t that irrelevant?” the victim asked in a confounded tone.
“Just answer the question, please.”
Yes, answer the question!
“Amethyst …”
“Which is who, the husband or sister?”
“Isn’t that sort of obvious? It’s a girl’s name. Well, amethyst died during a flight across Mexico. Michael … Michael gave his heart to me in a transplant to save my life.” The victim stared down as if she couldn’t bear to look at the camera or interviewer.
“Can I leave, please?” the victim asked uncertainly and worriedly.
“Not just yet, you’ve only been here for ten minutes.” The interview laughed cacophonously.
“Well, ten minutes is sufficient. You will see me in the new film I am starring in, released in April.”
“What’s the film?” the interviewer asked anxiously.
“’Noughts and Crosses’ based on the amazing, compelling novel by Malorie Blackman.” The victim got up and left the studio.
“I’m sorry for the inconvenience, it finished sooner than we thought because later in the interview depicted what will ease anyone’s depression, which was the purpose of this program. I encourage you to watch more BBC programs. Thank you and goodnight!”
The program came to an end and my notepad was half full of ideas.
I know exactly how to catch the victim off guard and push her over the knife-edge she was talking about in the program …

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

Is anyone even there? I’ll die if I don’t get treated. I don’t know what to do. The pain is unimaginably agonising! No one even knows! I’ll die like this! I’ll seriously die like this! Is this a punishment for lying about dying?
My heart is throbbing and I feel as if I’m going to be sick! I don’t understand this at all! I think it’s because I’ve been eating too much recently … too much foods full of fat and sugar that was gradually building up a noose to be wrapped around my neck to kill me! I didn’t used to be like this – I used to be anorexic and may have had liver failure but that wasn’t as painful as this! This is … excruciating!
I called out for help but obviously no one came. Please … someone … help me! I don’t to die like this! Listen God, I wont be abusive and lie and I wont eat so much junk food! Please, give me another chance!
I don’t want to die … I don’t want to die!

- Carrie Stanza –

“Yes, what is it?” I asked disconsolately.
I ran over to Kathy’s room.
“Could you look after Malorie for me for ten minutes? I’m just going out.” Kathy asked desperately whilst she was putting makeup on and putting her script into her bag.
“Where are you going? You’re not leaving me alone here are you? I may be ominous but I don’t like loneliness!” I moaned jokingly with a sly smirk.
“There are rats to keep you company,” Kathy smiled light-heartedly. I could tell from her smirk that she enjoys being alone.
“Yes! They can help me cook and clean and moan about my suppressive loneliness in the darkness of my adult driven life in a fear-provoking purity.” I moaned sarcastically and maintained the sly smirk.
“So, can you look after her for me for the time being?” Kathy asked hopelessly.
“Of course I will. What do I do? Just watch her? What does she eat?” I moaned, bewildered.
“Oh, don’t worry, she wont get hungry within ten … actually, just feed her anything you can find in the cupboard.” Kathy unworriedly waved her hand and put her bag on her back and departed from the room.
I was taken aback. “So, when you say anything in the cupboard … does she eat the lard and pizza and junk that Tess has?” I asked and I wasn’t joking.
“Very funny, Carrie.” Kathy laughed.
“But … I’m not …” I heard the front door slam shut, “… joking.” I sighed depressively.

Malorie began to scream because she was hungry and I didn’t know what to give her! I walked quickly towards the cupboards in the next room and left Malorie on the bed.
In the cupboard were cakes, biscuits, chocolate bars and food for toddlers. I instantly grabbed a pot of apple pie that was condensed down into a puree. It looked horrible! I threw the contents into a bowl and read the back. It said that it has to be cooked for a minute in the microwave but I don’t know how to use a microwave! So I quickly threw the bowl into the oven and put it on gas mark 5 and hoped that it would cook.
Five minutes later, I pulled the bowl out, shoved a spoon into the … slop … and ran to the screaming Malorie.
“Don’t worry, I’m coming!”
I shoved the contents of the spoon into her mouth but it only caused her to scream even louder and even more menacingly! Common sense hit me: it’ll burn her mouth … it has burnt her mouth!
Oh, dear! I’ve got to get out of here!


I climbed down the fire escape cautiously and dubiously checked if Tess or Kathy were in the living room because they would have a clear view of my great escape.
The ladder was black: my favourite colour and the moonlight gleamed off of it like the ladder was a black diamond. I stared up at the moon as I climbed down and the moon stared at me angrily and depressive, which is a reflection of my feelings now.
They keep moping about that jerk, Drake, and how he ruined their lives. I had a cousin called Drake but I don’t classify him as that anymore ever since he lied to me. But I don’t care, really! I’m only bloody fourteen years old and he’s in his twenties so he may be a more dominant person but he’s so stupid! Who would want someone that weird as a cousin? He doesn’t eat at all! Well, I am sort of like him at the moment because I am depressive and boring and don’t have a care in the world!
I need to find my mother, despite the fact that Malorie’s screaming was making me feel guilty. Her high-pitched deafening screaming was causing me to slip up once or twice whilst climbing the ladder. The road became a deathbed at this point because I was so high up that the fall would kill me and the cars running along the road wouldn’t help.
I suddenly became excruciatingly dizzy, partly because a smell of natural gas that would be emitted from an oven – I LEFT THE OVEN ON! – And because I was so high up! I had to decide whether I should go back for Malorie or run away like a coward. I could do what Kathy did at this point and run away when she was my age. I’m in her position now.
My conscience began to creep mercifully into my head.
Go back for Malorie, she’s only a small child and if she rolls off the bed … you’ll be to blame for what occur. Think about it. You’re doing a good deed!

Escape! Go find your mother and take the baby, sell it and use the money to … sell the baby? That’s cruel! I may be ominous but not that much! I’m going back for Malorie. She’ll die if she inhales too much natural gas from the oven! Kathy will display abhorrence against me if she realises that it was me who burnt her daughter’s mouth and killed her with natural gas from the oven!
I continued climbing down the ladder cautiously and carefully to make sure that no one can hear me. I clambered down the ladder and made my way to take vengeance on my father for almost killing my mother! Yes, he tried to kill her! She’s now in a hospital where depression, the stalker and my father can’t reach her.

/ + /
- Tess Calamber –

When you leap off a building, you feel and look so serene, so peaceful as if everything falls into place. When you leap off a building, it’s actually the impact that kills you not the point where you collide with the ground, even though that has a rather great impact on your death.
I was standing with the support of my crutches on the top of a building and began to open my eyes. I felt like God, watching over everyone and I felt like I was controlling the actions of those strolling or running along the pavements and the cars whizzing by on the roads. In the far distance is Asda and a few kilometres away from there are the Riverside Swimming Baths where my friends and I spent some Saturday afternoons together.
This is the easy route before the solution – oh well, at least no one will care. Do I even have the courage to do it? Wait … I cant do this to Malorie! I can’t leave Malorie with a mother that will ignore her for rest of her life. If I leave this horrible place now then Malorie, under the supervision of her lying, depressed mother, will eventually attempt the same thing …


OR … Malorie’s development

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I stared into the mirror as Tess opened all the windows to let the natural gas from the oven out of the apartment. Malorie was safe, thank God! She did have a burnt tongue and watering eyes though and it took Tess and I hours to calm her down.
The main concern was where Carrie had disappeared. She said she would look after her but she didn’t. Well, I suppose it’s my fault for trusting a depressed fourteen-year-old with a child that has just turned two-years-old.
Tess came home crying tonight – I don’t know why though but I think I’ve done something because she won’t talk to me.
I spotted something grotesque in the mirror – no, not my face! My pupil was a cloudy white colour!
“Tess, is it natural to have white eyes?” I asked.
“Yes, your eyeball is naturally white!” Tess snapped as she was digging into a whole pot of ice cream.
“No, I mean the pupil.”
“Hmm, I may not have GCSEs but by that I know there’s something wrong.”
“I know that!” I snapped back, “I just want to know what is wrong with me.”
“Go see a doctor.” Tess sighed, eating away at her ice cream whilst I tried to pry my eye open so I can see if the pupil is completely white.
“Not just yet, I don’t think it’s that bad really.” I replied.
“Is Malorie asleep?” Tess asked wearily.
“Yeah, she’s asleep on my bed. Actually, might go bed, I’m feeling tired.” I complained.
“It’s only four!” Tess moaned, “What’s wrong with you? Usually you’re awake until gone two in the morning.”
“Not tonight. I’m feeling more tired than usual.”
“Is that ‘cause you’ve been depressed recently or are you alright?” Tess asked.
“Memories of Michael have been creeping back in.”
“That’s the same for me but memories of Drake.”
I limped toward my bedroom and looked at Tess sympathetically.
“Don’t look at me like that. I’m in a wheelchair, that’s a worse situation.” Tess moaned and sighed heavily.
“Oh, stupid pain!” I snapped in agony and screamed in tenderness, “Can I have your wheelchair?” I giggled.
“No! Piss off!” Tess exclaimed.
“Fine … fine. I’ll see you tomorrow.” I limped to my bedroom and once in there, I smiled down at Malorie who was so peaceful asleep like that. Her hair was fluffy and out of place but she looked so sweet and serene and not as mundane as she was a few hours ago.
I picked her up and kissed her sweating forehead. I’m not sure what to call her. Her real father is deceased and his last name is Winters and her wedlock father’s name is Carter. Illegally, I’m going to have to call her Malorie Kimberley so she doesn’t question about her father. I hope she never does or I wont have a daughter anymore.
Can you see her, Michael? She looks too much like you, which is why it is heartbreaking to look after her. I don’t know what I’m going to do.


- Malorie Kimberley –
Age 7

“Mummy, I’ve got to go to school! Wake up!” I snapped.
“Huh? What? Go away!” Mummy snapped drearily.
“Mum, you been drinkin’ again?” I asked, sighing deeply and picked up some glass bottles that previously contained alcohol.
I kicked the big lump under the covers.
“Aunt Tess! She won’t wake up!” I moaned.
Tess walked in and smiled at me.
“She’s having a hangover again, is she?” Tess sighed and pushed mum out of the bed.
“OW! What are you trying to do?” Mummy exclaimed.
“Malorie’s late for school.” Tess complained.
“Oh … well cant you drive her today?” Mummy asked Tess.
“I have a meeting this morning – I can’t be late or I’ll lose my job.”
“You’ve lost enough jobs, why would this one matter?” Mummy asked from under the covers, she began to fall back asleep … on the floor!
“Thanks, Kathy. That really means a lot. You enjoy your hangover – I’ll take Malorie to school and lose yet another job!” Tess grabbed my arm and tried to drag me out of the room but I pulled away.
“No, I wanna stay here with mummy. I don’t want you losing a job, aunty.” I jumped on the big lump as she was squirming under the covers.
“Malorie, go away!” Mummy moaned and she threw me off her onto the mattress.
Her arm was hanging out of the covers.
“Mummy, why is your skin a yellowish tint? Oh, oh, oh! You can star in ‘The Simpsons’!” I said excitedly like it was Christmas.
“Yellowish … what? … Skin?” Mummy asked, befuddled. What does befuddled mean anyway? I heard Aunty Tess moaning that Mummy’s eyes going cloudy befuddle her. I didn’t think people could put clouds in there eyes. I thought clouds were just floating marshmallows in the sky. Aunt Tess taught me that.
“She’s not just having a hangover, Malorie. She has clinical depression, which I can guess from all the pills scattered across the floor. What if Malorie picked one up, Kathy? How would you feel then?” Tess exclaimed furiously.
“Look … I know you’re a psychiatrist but you don’t have to ask how I bloody feel!” Mummy snapped. Bloody … what does that mean? I’ve heard of blood, that’s that red stuff that comes out when you prick your finger but … why does the ’y’ make a difference?
“You shouldn’t use that language around a seven year old, Kathy. She’s your daughter and ever since you found Michael’s Will, you’ve been in a blank universe! What’s wrong with you? She’s your daughter!” Tess shouted at mummy and she didn’t even get up.
I started to hear her crying: mummy was crying under the covers.
“What’s wrong, mummy?” I asked sensitively.
“I don’t care.”
“I don’t care about life anymore. What’s the bloody point?” Mummy moaned whilst she was crying so her voice was muffled.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

I squint from the brief pain of sunlight reflected, burning my retina, but I wondered what it was that caught my attention to begin with. The Stalker looked closer at my arm and then tried reticently to regain some composure. I didn’t want to see the look of inquisitiveness on its face, but it noticed that I wasn’t wearing just any silver bracelet, but a Medic-Alert bracelet that had ‘Manic Depressive’ engraved on it.

“Kathy … Kathy! Please, get up! We’re eating dinner and you’re still in a bundle on the floor buried in clothes and quilts! Can you please stop taking those pills and stop thinking about Michael’s Will?” Tess’ shrill, exasperating voice bemoaned.
“I’m not thinking about Michael’s Will … I’m thinking about what happened at West Park.” I whispered shakily. I couldn’t stop shaking: there was an earthquake within my body! I began to rant and rave at Tess, insisting she went away but the strange thing is, I didn’t know if I said it or not because my mind was developing backwards from being foggy to going … blank.
“I need to take you to a doctor, Kathy. There’s something wrong with you.” Tess replied.
“I’m just depressed,” I moaned, which was muffled under the quilt covers.
“I need to help you. Well, I want to help you. Your daughter doesn’t understand. She’s … she’s been asking questions about …” Tess said indecisively.
“About who?” I moaned.
There was a long moment of hesitation.
I realised what she meant by that hesitation. I’ve got to get up and talk to her but would she understand yet … she’s only seven-years-old!
“I’ll wait until she’s a teenager then I’ll tell her.”
“Remember what you tried to do when you found out the same thing from your parents? When you were a teenager?” Tess whispered.
“Yes, I remember. I’ve been thinking about doing it again.” I sobbed.
“Why? You can’t do that to Malorie! I’m not lying to her about how her suicidal mother killed herself!” Tess snapped.
“You’ve already lied about having a daughter, this should be a piece of cake.” I sighed and tried to ease myself awake but it was impossible, “You’re not the catalyst to help me cope, you know! Please, go away!”
Michael, I should have died! I didn’t want your heart! I was the suicidal one whilst you were respected everywhere! You would have known how to care for my daughter. You would have known.
The whole night, I called Michael’s name.
At that moment, I wanted to die watching myself bleed again.

- Malorie Kimberley –
Age 8

As I was waiting for the bus to my boring primary school, the Daniel Brown Primary School, that traps and tries to steal our personalities, I saw a family walk by gleefully. There was something different about this family.
There was a mother, that’s pretty ordinary. There was a daughter, like me, that’s ordinary. But … there was another family member walking by too. He was too young to be the girl’s grandfather and too old to be the girl’s cousin because he looked thirty, so he must be her uncle. That’s right – her uncle!
Wait … the family figure that I thought was her uncle, kissed the mother and the child on the lips and walked away with a suitcase in his hand. I was so confused and focused on this, that I missed the bus and ended up running down ten streets to reach my school.

“As you all probably know, today is Father’s Day so we will be designing cards for our dads today.” My teacher, Mrs Tweed, said ecstatically and everyone replied by giving a roar of excitement. Why are people so excited about school, anyway? Why do we need to come here if we’re going to draw on card all day!
“Miss, what’s Father’s Day?” I asked, confused.
“Very funny, Malorie.” Mrs Tweed laughed whilst she marked our ‘essays’ on family life because Father’s Day was coming up and today, it is here and I don’t have the slightest idea of what it is!
Everyone laughed along with Mrs Tweed but I wasn’t laughing.
“Miss, I’m serious.” I said with a serious face. I love using that face to fool Aunt Tess into thinking that I got expelled. It’s so funny! But she told me off for doing it because she was expelled in high school – she didn’t tell me why though. There are too many secrets in out house and I need to find them out. Look at me; I’m starting to sound like a Crime Scene Investigator! ‘Malorie Kimberley stars in Crime Watch!’ I giggled lightly so that the teacher didn’t think I was giggling because of the Father’s Day question.
Everyone stared at me with a twisted face.
“What y’ looking at?” I asked sharply.
“Malorie, Father’s Day is when you appreciate your father and buy him a gift as a sign of that appreciation.” Mrs Tweed replied.
“But … I don’t have a father. What’s a father?” I maintained the serious expression.
“You must have a father because a father is the one that supplies the … sperm to … conceive you. Never mind! That’s something you kids don’t need to know about for another seven years.”
A girl on the front row put up her hand.
“Yes?” Mrs Tweed asked.
“What’s sperm?”
“Erm … well … you don’t need to know that.” Mrs Tweed said uneasily.
“I want to know now.” The girl replied anxiously.
“Ask your father.” Mrs Tweed replied and brushed her forehead with a tissue. Hmm … why do adults do that?
“What’s a father?” I asked again anxiously.
“A father is the male carer in the family.” Mrs Tweed said.
“Then why don’t I have one?” I asked, beginning to get upset that everyone else had one and I didn’t. I always want what everyone else wants.
“I’m not sure, Malorie, maybe because he left home or gone to a better place.” Mrs Tweed replied, ticking away at the papers.
“A better place? Can I go there?” I asked with a tear streaming down my face because I didn’t have a father.
“Not just yet, you’re too young.” Mrs Tweed replied.
“What’s it like there? Would my father be happy there?” I asked.
“Yes he would because it’s like paradise there – everything you’ve ever dreamed of is depicted there.” Mrs Tweed said enthusiastically.
“Oh. Then I want to go there, miss. How do I get there?” I asked anxiously.
“Ask your f … mother” Mrs Tweed replied.
“But she’s “depressed” as my Aunty says,” I moaned.
“Then ask your aunty.” Mrs Tweed said, not even looking up at me.
I spent the lesson trying to glue my glass teddy bear back together with a glue stick – don’t try it – it’s useless! Just like my perspective is. Perspective … what is that anyway? Aunty Tess taught me that word when she was talking about what my mum thought. She hugged me yesterday for not calling mum ‘mummy’ anymore and said excitedly: ‘You’re growing up!’ and as I do grow up, I want to find out more about this father person. Who is he? Where is he? Why doesn’t he want to see me?

“Aunty Tess, where’s my father and how do I go to “a better place” to see him?” I asked anxiously as Aunty Tess was washing dishes.
“What?” Tess asked, surprised and dropped a plate. The plate smashed into millions of little shards on the side so Tess began to instantly and quickly clear it up.
“Where’s my father and how do I see him?” I asked.
“I’m busy at the moment, Malorie, ask a little later.” Tess said and sighed as if everything was okay but it wasn’t for me. I didn’t understand this! I need to know where my father is!

- Malorie Kimberley –
Age 9

“Mum, what’s depression?” I asked mum as lay on the sofa with quilt covers wrapped around her. She didn’t look healthy at all: she had receding dark circles around her eyes and her skin was getting more yellow.
“Depression is what I am.” Mum replied.
“Why are you depressed?” I asked, concerned and sympathetic, shown by my facial expression and voice.
“You’re too young to understand, Malorie.” Mum began to sob into the bed covers and a black mark was left from her tears spreading her mascara.
“I’m not too young! I’m nearly ten!” I snapped.
“Please, Malorie, leave me alone to die and go to your room.” Mum said but I could barely understand her because of her constant sobbing.
“Why are you always like this at winter?” and then what might be the problem, “Is this the season and month Dad was born?” I asked suspiciously.
Mum took her eyes away from the quilt cover and stared at me like I was dirt, “You’re bright girl, Malorie … but you have no understanding of what you are talking about. You didn’t have a Dad.” Mum replied shrilly.
“Of course I had a dad! If I didn’t have a dad, I wouldn’t be here!” I snapped.
“How do you know that you need a Dad to be here? You haven’t learnt that in detail, have you?” Mum asked suspiciously.
“No, but Mrs Tweed told us about something to do with sperm or something, but that’s not important,” I brushed that aside and began to talk about more serious matters, “Where is Dad?”
“Your father left us.” Mum moaned.
I didn’t know what to believe sometimes, she made you believe it so well because she’s an actress. I asked her how she lies so well and she said:
“I’m an actress, Malorie. When you’re an actress you can emphasise things beyond belief!”
“So, does that mean you’re lying?” I asked.
“Not necessarily.” Mum replied.
“Then where is my dad? I want to see him! You’ve ruined my life enough with lies about him so I want the truth for once!” I moaned, crying and wiping away the tears with my sleeve.
“LOOK, MALORIE! YOU DON’T KNOW THE HALF OF IT! LEAVE ME ALONE TO ROT, I can’t bear to look at you any longer.” Mum snapped shrilly.
“Fine …” I wept and brushed away my tears instantly as they fell from my eyes, “I have no parents.”
“I’m your mother, so do what I say.” Mum ordered.
“Do what I say: Take yourself and your lies out of here ‘cause I never wanna see you again. My no love you anymore!” I snapped.
“I don’t love you anymore, not ‘my no love you anymore’! You’re talking like a five-year-old.” Mum complained.
“You don’t exist, Dad doesn’t exist! Only Aunty Tess exists to me now!” I moaned.
“She’s not your bloody aunty, Malorie!” Mum exclaimed.
My crying state got worse. Yes! I was having a tantrum! Deal with it!
“Another lie! You just won’t stop, will you, mummy?” I snapped through sobbing.
“That does it.” Mum got up off the chair and dragged me by my arm over to the closet. She unlocked it and threw me in. I hit the wall and was in agony! But not from the pain … I was in agony from the secrets and lies my mum keeps insisting. Dad, help me! “You can stay in there until you get your mind right, Malorie! You can come out when you admit that you didn’t have a Dad!”
She closed the door on my life.

- Malorie Kimberley –
Age 10

I was becoming obsessed with searching for my father. I couldn’t read very well but I scanned the Phone Book for anyone with the last name of Kimberley and rang off the apartment building phone because the phone in our apartment was broken from mum beating it to death!
Here were my frequently asked questions:
1. “Hi, are you my daddy?” Yes, ‘daddy’! I may have gotten over the phase of calling mum my ‘mummy’ but I haven’t even met my dad yet!
2. “This is Malorie Kimberley, am I related to you?”
3. “Is there a man there with the last name of Kimberley?”
4. “Were you born in winter?”
I didn’t know what to do. I needed to find my dad and quickly.
I was already late for school and mum was still in the bathroom! I hammered the door, whacked it, bashed it and roared witty insults at her. She just wouldn’t open the door! She was in there for hours and I mean hours! I’m not being overdramatic or anything it’s just she has been in there for two hours now and I was bursting! I began to do a stupid little dance before my bladder auditioned for a popping balloon in a Broadway show!
I sneakily looked through the keyhole and spotted something grotesque! No, nothing horrible like that! She was … cutting her skin to pieces! She was slicing away at her arms, legs and engraving ‘depressed’ into her stomach! This is horrible! Why is mum doing this?
I screamed so loud that the neighbours were banging on the wall and probably rats and mice under the floorboard will be packing their bags and going to New York because it’s quieter than me!
The only problem is, I had a habit of copying my mum. But I wouldn’t copy her doing this! That disgusting thing she was doing to herself!

- Malorie Kimberley –
Age 11 and age 12

This year will be a better year: I’m sure of it. There will be no slicing and dicing of skin like my mother did! That was the darkest day of my life! It was so disgusting last year! This year, she’s doing it even more!
I could take the wondering and waiting no longer! I need to know who my father is before he forgets about me! The only way to find out about him is … to look through mother’s belongings! That’s it!
I looked in her bottom draw and it only contained underwear and this weird piece of clothing that had two oval-shaped ditches attached to by elastic! Or was it even clothing? It looks like a good device to shoot water balloons – that would be great! On Halloween, prepare for soaking, bullies!
I looked in the second drawer and there were shirts and trousers and some money at the bottom so I instantly swiped that for later! On top of all the clothes was a hammer … why was that in there? There was nothing about Dad in here – nothing.
In the top drawer there were socks – millions and millions of pairs of socks! What’s the bloody point having so many socks? Yes, I’ve picked up a bad word from my mother – she says it all the time! It’s … difficult … to ignore it!
Suddenly, I heard the front door close and loud, insistent footsteps coming this way! I rummaged around at the speed of light, searching for any clue and I found it! It … was a … wedding certificate?
Mother’s name was second and then above it … was Drake Carter. Drake Carter? I’ve heard that name before somewhere.
Drake Carter is my dad! I’ve found out about my dad!
Drake Carter …
Malorie Carter – what a great name! It’s better than Malorie Kimberley because it has a weird rhyme to it, but Malorie Carter sounds so much better. If it weren’t my dad’s name, I would hate the name but because it’s his name: I was SO HAPPY! I could almost scream in delight but that bubble was burst when mother walked in.
“Drake Carter! Drake Carter!” I exclaimed ecstatically. I could shout it to the heavens! I couldn’t believe that I’d finally found out about my –
“Why have you got that? I knew I should have burnt it!” Mother snapped.
“My father does exist and you’re still married!” I said gleefully.
“Who said we’re still married? I got a divorce from him years ago.” Mother said eerily.
“A divorce? So, my dad is still alive?” I asked excitedly.
“Drake Carter is alive.” Mother replied carelessly emphasising something.
“So, Drake Carter isn’t my dad?” I asked unexcitedly.
“I didn’t say that. You’ll work it out when you’re a teenager, Mal.” Mother said.
“When I’m a teenager? MAL?” I was furious and instantly left the room, folding up the certificate and placing it in my pocket.
“Mal means bad in French so I thought it suited you.” Mother replied harshly.

Of course, I went in search of this Drake Carter person and found out his address. No one answered the door, disappointedly. I really needed to ask him questions.
I kept visiting the same house everyday for a year (Yes, a year!) but still no one answered so I gave up. If he were my dad, fate would have opened the door.

- Malorie Kimberley –
Age 13 and 14

I lost any positive image I'd had of myself... I used to stand in front of the mirror, with such hatred, that I'd slap myself full in the face. Mother called me ugly two weeks ago and I’ve been staring into the mirror with hatred ever since and mainly because I look a lot like my mother!
I was walking home from school one day through Doxey Marshes, and I reached into my pocket and pulled out my house key. I departed Doxey Marshes and walked onto West Park and stayed there. Don't ask me why, because I don't know, but I dragged the sharp edge of the key down the side of my face. I suddenly felt like I could breathe instead of being compressed and violated in my mother’s dreary depression.
I got inside, pulled up my sleeve and started scratching my arm with the key. It helped … it was my little secret ...
I went back to school the next day and nobody knew. Not long after I found myself a relationship. He didn't like what I was doing, but he didn't stop me and frighteningly romantic he said: ‘I’ve started doing it too and I’ve wrote your name on my arm’.
Everything was fine, and a month later I was spending my lunchtime break with some people in the year below. I don't know why but I became butt of the jokes that day. It didn't take long for it to get past the point I could cope with it, and I walked out of school, went home, and broke the blade out of a disposable razor that Tess used to shave her legs with (Scary – I know!). Line after line went down my arm, the blood dripped into the sink full of water below and I smiled. I was proud.
I spiralled ... downwards ... soon there were cuts on my arm, both legs and my stomach. I'd used a needle stolen from the school science dept to bleed both my wrists and one of the veins in my ankle. I was a mess - and I'd stopped being proud of it. I hid myself away from the world, pretended to be someone I wasn't. There was even a night when I sat on my bedroom floor contemplating 61 paracetemol, and trying to clean the blood from the carpet.
I was becoming my mother.
I wanted to be my father, not my mother.
It's really scary what depression can do to you. It makes you think you're worthless while everyone around you thinks you're priceless. Knowing that people think you're priceless makes you angry, because you think they're only pretending to care, and if they're not, you pity them because you think you're not worth the clothes you're wearing, the education you're getting, the money you're earning.
Depression makes you feel guilty for taking up other people's time. It makes you angry beyond belief sometimes, especially when people start to worry about you because of course, they're only pretending to care and worry, they're just trying to interfere in your life. You stop talking to everyone you used to and you keep every thought, emotion and belief about someone inside.
Everyone seems to start snapping at you for no reason, so you snap back, and they get confused why. You can't concentrate on the things you ought to anymore, and become frustrated that you can't do it. I know I wasn't the only one to feel like that. I know that there are many people in the world that feel like that and some other people don’t know who their father is.
Tess pretends she cares about me:
“Tess, why can’t you tell me who my real father is?” I asked.
After some hesitation, Tess spoke: “I don’t want to hurt you.” She said sympathetically. She smirked lightly afterwards, which reflects how much she doesn’t care!
I stormed into my room and began to begin the disturbing events all over again and whilst I cut into myself, I thought that maybe Tess is one of those people that believes I’m priceless because I understand her and she understands me. I get on with her better than my mother.
My own Mother thinks that I’m worthless:
“Mal, go find a nice hole, put yourself in it, bury yourself and realise that your father doesn’t exist and that depression is more than being upset about something.” Kathy said shrilly. I don’t want to call her mother anymore. Mothers are caring, delightful people. This person here is not a mother.
“Kathy, stop dragging along you past and think about the future. You don’t even have a proper one because all you do is sit around all day, moping!” I snapped back at her. I thought I was quite witty but Kathy thought differently.
“Why did you call me Kathy? I’m your mother, not your friend.” She moaned, not even looking at me. She was staring down at a piece of paper with tears streaming down her face. I thought at first it was the wedding certificate but Tess told me that she hated Drake Carter.
“You’re neither, Kathy.” I smirked lightly and left her to waste her life away.

Tess came in later and sat down on my bed.
“What do you want?” I asked lightly.
She was crying. I hadn’t realised before because it’s dark when you walk I but as you reach the centre of the room, it’s lighter.
“W-w-what’s wrong?” I asked shakily. I was afraid of what she was going to talk about.
Tess unclasped her hand and inside was the bloody blade out of the disposable razor. I gasped and started to creep further and further away by shifting myself along the bed.
“I love you, Malorie. I don’t want you doing this to yourself or you’ll turn out just like your mother.” Tess sobbed.
“I don’t have a mother.” I replied sharply.
I couldn’t concentrate in school when the teacher asked an occasional question:
“So, Malorie, what is the first simile in Act One?” Mr Grouch asked.
“Erm …” I scanned the text but everything became a blur because I was anxious to get out of here and begin the ‘side-effects’ of depression like cutting myself. I don’t know why I liked it so much it was just a … phase I suppose. I hated my mother (who is known as Kathy to me now) and I really, really desperately wanted to meet my father … I didn’t even know his name, though. Maybe a little bribery to Tess later might solve the problem.
I couldn’t think. I couldn’t focus. I was in a place where darkness was creeping in faster and faster and I felt like I was stranded, buried in my bed covers and sitting up on my mattress, on a black river that only said ‘DEPRESSED’ in blood red writing whenever I searched for a reflection. I felt like I couldn’t breathe all over again.
“Well? We’ve been waiting for six minutes!” Mr Grouch snapped.
“I don’t even know what I bloody simile is!” I snapped back.
“How dare you swear at me! Go to the withdrawal room, now!” Mr Grouch snapped.
“No,” I protested.
“Excuse me?” Mr Grouch replied antagonistically.
“I don’t want to go, why don’t you go!” I snapped.
“Because I’m the teacher!” he replied angrily, “And I dominate over recessive students that waste my time! Get out of this room, now! Ro I’ll ring your parents!” Mr Grouch threatened.
I smirked, “I don’t have any parents!” I giggled.
I can picture how hurtful it would be to have someone you love treat you with such suspicion and accuse you of faking your love and concern because I experience that: the relationship between Kathy and I is snipe after snipe and remark after remark!
I can imagine how tempting it would be to give up helping and supporting your loved one through depression, but even though they say otherwise, they need your help and support. If I tried to help Kathy then she wouldn’t listen. I needed her to support me.
After I stopped being angry with Kathy and focused more on my father, Kathy seemed to know how to help my progress through my "tunnel" and out into the light. I needed very little active help. All I wanted was the knowledge about what was going on with me and how those things were progressing, albeit slowly. I needed to see my father and tell him about these problems and hope he would help me.
I would say that I walked out into the sunshine from my tunnel after I broke up with my boyfriend. He was there all through my depression, and tried to help me as much as he could, but the whole thing put a strain on our relationship, and we just stopped loving each other.
“Malorie, you’ve got to stop hurting yourself like this. I’ll help you find your dad. I don’t want to see you kill yourself.” Darren said, concerned. He had his arm around me as we watched ‘The Simpsons’ and when Itchy and Scratchy began to kill themselves, Darren had to talk about suicide with me.
Darren had mouse brown hair that was delightfully spiky like a hedgehog and so short I’m surprised he could even spike it up properly. He had his ear and lip pierced but not his nose, even though he wanted it done. He had a huge nose and said if anyone saw it pierced, it would look even bigger. He was wearing a black shirt and blue trousers, similar to my clothes except I wore jeans.
“Why are we talking about this? I don’t want to stop, I told you.” I complained tempestuously and sighed deeply afterwards.
“Why do you self-harm anyway? It’s not like you have any real problems.” Darren sighed.
“Real problems? Real problems? I don’t know who my father is, Kathy hates me and I despise her and I have no friends because I’m too tempestuously poignant.” I moaned.
“I don’t like you when you’re antisocial and depressed, though. You’re ruining your beautiful self.” Darren tried to kiss me but I pushed him away with the back of my hand and walked quickly to the door. I opened it slightly.
“When you can accept my life and what I do, grow up and ring me,” I moaned and opened the door completely, leaving his apartment (he left home at the age of twelve because of the conflict between his parents was tearing him apart.)

£ £ £

Kathy went to the doctors today: she finally stopped moping around in her pyjamas watching Lee Evans to try and cheer her up but it didn’t work.
For the whole day, I truanted so I stayed at home and searched for another sharp immoderate object that would cut my skin so I could finally breathe again. I know it sounds stupid but when you feel the way I feel, you seem trapped and pressured into a small gap and you have a mixed feeling of paranoia and claustrophobia.
I hope Kathy has something wrong with her. I know, I know, she’s my … mother … but there’s something about her that causes pure hatred to rise up within me like a vicious beast attempting to escape it’s confinement but always gets held back before it causes too much damage. My resentment would cause damage infliction.
I gave up searching for sharp objects and calmed the beats of depression within me by eating chocolate (try eating chocolate on a bad day it’s like … wow … here comes heaven!) and watching soppy love movies like ‘pride and prejudice’, ‘Love Story’ and ‘Atonement’. Kisses, death and sex were all they were made up of! They aren’t the type of films for me! Instead, I ended up reading ‘The Bell Jar’ by a woman called Sylvia Plath and I felt like I was Esther Greenwood!
Tess got a new job as someone who councils people through people’s disabilities because she had experience of being in a wheelchair. Five operations later and she walked again! It’s a lot easier to talk to her now because I don’t have to look down at her when she talks.
Kathy didn’t come home until late; she must have something really wrong with her.

/ r /
- Kathy Kimberley –

Try breathing again. Slower this time, not as rapid and desperate as last time. I began choking and my throat felt like it was closing inwards and my oxygen was slipping away.
I hated this. What was wrong with me? My skin is a yellowish tint, my pupils are cloudy, I’m always feeling tired (that may also be the depression development) and a terrible chest pain in the morning as if a very strong weightlifter threw a barge pole at my ribs!
I’ve been feeling “under the weather” every evening as if I had permanent fluenza attacking my senses and sanity! The crises of pain didn’t help either – I went to the shop for once in three weeks and kept making agonising noises of pain in the shop. I asked for a packet of cigarettes and screamed ‘ooh, ah, ah!” and the shopkeeper thought I was strange from the look she gave me.
I coughed continuously in the morning, afternoon and the evening but thankfully not at night or Malorie would probably try and make it worse somehow. I thought at first it was a smoker’s cough but if it lasts that long then I don’t know what to do!
I have to go and see a doctor and soon but … I didn’t want to get up! Luckily for me, the hospital was down the road.

After an hours wait, a Doctor Gordon saw to me.
“What symptoms have you been feeling?” the doctor asked with a notepad at the ready.
“Well, I’m permanently tired but I thought that may have something to do with my clinical depression; I’ve been having stomach, arm and chest ache daily; my eyes are cloudy whit – see; My skin is like a yellowish kind of tint like I’m a tall ‘Umpa Lumpa’ or something; the bleeding scars on my arms have been taking three months to heal and have started to bruise, oh, they are caused by self-harming but that’s not important … erm … I have a cough and a fever permanently with chest pain and trouble breathing, did you get that all down?” I listed all my symptoms depressively and irritably like I had something better to do when, of course, I didn’t because all I would do is sit around and watch television.
“Yes, you’ve definitely got sickle cell anaemia. Sickle cell anaemia is a blood disorder, which affects haemoglobin, a red pigment protein in your red blood cells. Its when red blood cells change shape and don’t carry as much oxygen, which is a result of your loss of breathing. It’s not contagious but it does result in your death eventually. However, we can slow it down by –“
“How is the bloody thing caused?” I asked shrilly.
“When someone inherits and abnormal gene from each parent.” The doctor replied.
My parents have ruined my life enough as it is!
“Your death can be slowed down by taking folic acid tablets that creates more red blood cells and a subscription of penicillin.”
“I don’t; want my death to be slowed down.” I complained.
“Take them anyway – living longer gives you more time to cure yourself of clinical depression.” The doctor said sympathetically.
“This is crazy! I have sickle cell anaemia? You’re joking! Please don’t say you’re joking.” I said excitedly because: “sickle cell anaemia will kill me and that’s exactly what I want!” I added.
“You really are clinically depressed, aren’t you? I recommend a chat with a psychiatrist, Kathy.” The doctor recommended, obviously concerned.
“I don’t want to chat with anyone like that. All I want now is to lie back down, buried in my bedcovers, wishing that the bedcovers are my grave!” I snapped excitedly.

- Malorie Kimberley –
Age 15 and 16

I tried to overdose that year; I took a handful of painkillers. They just made me sleep for about 18 hours, unfortunately. My mum wasn't worried, well, why would she be?
She came back from the hospital in such an energized, excited state! She smirked at me when I asked her what was wrong and she told me this strange doctor jargon. I think she said ‘sick shell a mania’ and I was so confused! I asked my biology teacher about it and she said that the symptoms sound like sickle cell anaemia, which is a deadly disease. She wondered why I was smiling from ear to ear, so widely and so pleased. I replied: ‘Life is going to get a lot easier for me!’ in a gleeful tone.
I started driving, which is a dangerous predicament for me because whenever I drive, I wonder what would happen if I drove at 80mph and colliding with metal rails. I wondered how many people would appear at my funeral, just to see who would be there but how would I see who was there if I was dead?
Tess told me about a girl who faked her death in a car crash but then died in a plane crash afterwards. She left behind a red case for her sister and it caused an explosion as revenge. I was fascinated by this story and the fact that she wasn’t depressed intrigued me. She only wanted to inflict depression on her sister. However, I do have sympathy for the sister of that girl because her life was torn to shreds perniciously. Yes, I’ve been picking up big words now and hopefully they will dominate (See! Another one) over the swear words I hear from Kathy.
I reached into my pocket and brought out the pills. I stared at them for hours – thinking about what I should do. An idea sprung to mind. When I was young, about four, I began ripping Kathy’s books to shreds from boredom so she hid them under the floorboards. At five-years-old, I found a pair of scissors and started throwing them around the house so Kathy hid them under the floorboards. Anything about Dad that I might find, she’ll hide them under the floorboards …
I sprinted as fast as a writer conjuring up an idea for a book to Kathy’s room and opened the top drawer and pulled out the hammer. I used the side that pulls out screws to undo the floorboards and ripped them up instinctively with anxiety. Today, I would find my dad!
My hands scurried around in the hay that had been stuffed down there – possibly a mouse’s bed. Something bit me as I was searching (the mouse) but I didn’t focus on the pain, I only focused on finding any information, photos or notebooks about my Dad.
There was nothing under the first floorboard, so I ripped up the next one and discovered some burnt pieces of paper that were illegible to read. The third floorboard was loose!
I rapidly searched and searched around, trying to grab anything that would be associated to my Dad. I intuitively grabbed a notebook! A notebook!
I forcefully ripped it out of the hole in the floor and stared at it in amazement. A huge, merciful grin spread across my face. It had a cover that resembled eroded marble. I opened the first page and saw a title that changed my life:

‘Michael Winters: age 10 to age 18’

I scanned through every page and read about him – he was my Dad! He knew Kathy; he loved Kathy so he must be my Dad! Dad was wise and accomplished but foolish that he walked haphazardly into dangerous territories.
I wonder where he is now! I bet he’s in a mansion somewhere, rich and successful and, and …
I need to search for him! Where does he live? I searched frantically for an address and then I spotted a ‘USEFUL ADDRESSES & TELEPHONE NUMBERS’ and frantically scanned the information until I spotted his number and address! I was going to find my dad!
After barging the locked front door open, I rushed agonisingly down the stairs and a horrible pain in my stomach was lurching like a parasite. I almost ripped the apartment building phone off the wall of the entrance hall. I frantically and shakily tapped each number the notebook information stated. I had to retype it several times because of nervousness overwhelming me.
The phone began to ring and my heart was hammering against my chest.
“Hello?” a woman’s voice asked irritably.
“Hi, hi, is a-a-anyone there called Michael W-Winters?” I asked shakily.
There was a pause of hesitation.
“Who is this?” the woman asked in an aggravated tone.
“I’m Michael’s d-daughter, miss. Who are you?” I muttered shakily.
“I’m Michael’s …” there was a pause and I could have swore I heard sobbing, “I’m his mother.”
“Do you know where he is?” I asked eagerly.
“Is this a prank call or something? Michael never had a daughter!” Dad’s mother snapped heatedly.
“He does. I’m Malorie Kim … Winters! I’m Malorie Winters! That’s my last name! Winters! I love that!” I shouted breathlessly.
“Well, he’s not here.” Dad’s mum replied.
“Do you know where I can find him?” I asked impatiently.
“Well … I don’t want to say, dear.” Dad’s mum replied through sobbing.
“Tell me, please! I desperately need to find him!” I shouted, exasperatedly eager.
“Your father is … in Doxey Marshes’ cemetery.” Grandma replied.
I was speechless.
“What’s your name?” She asked and I instantly hung up and pressed against the wall, dropping the phone so it dangled from the phone box.
At the moment, a piece of paper flew out of the notebook. It was folded into quarters and had tear splotches covering every area of the paper. I unfolded it and expected it to be another one of Dad’s memories but then … the sheer volume of the title on the paper began to sink in with distinctive agony.
The now unfolded piece of paper covered in tear splotches, was Dad’s Will.
The Will was now covered in new tear splotches.
Left behind for me was fifty million pounds in West Park! Fifty million pounds!
Kathy was promised Michael’s parent’s house that was originally promised to him but he can’t take ownership of it now. I wondered why we haven’t moved there yet.
I felt like I was having a mental breakdown.
My Dad was dead.
My Dad was gone.
Memories began to creep in of my childhood and they were so far back that my head felt like it was throbbing in agony. A blurred image of a man was holding me up and staring into my eyes, smiling. I giggled back at him then began to scream when he held me too high. I heard Kathy’s voice overtake his and she sounded annoyed. Was this image of my father?
I’ve been searching all these years for someone who isn’t there.
I’m lost.
Hoping for someone to come and pull me out of the darkness and back into reality, even if it’s Kathy who has to explain.
My heart was pulsating in agony and bewilderment, just like my mind. I couldn’t control my life anymore. I was collapsing and my vision began to become blurry. My hands were shaking uncontrollably like it was a natural ability for them to do that.
I was crying into the paper and began to slowly slide down the wall in desperate, vigorous sobbing that would get me locked up in a mental institution because I was crazy!
My emotions were fiery with fury and Kathy’s voice came into my collapsing mind.
“I was going to tell you, Mal.” Kathy said considerately.
“Why?” I asked in distressed tears.
“Why what, Mal?” Kathy asked.
“Why … why is he dead? Dad … dead … why?” I asked frantically.
“He gave his heart to me in a transplant.” Kathy replied calmly but I could see she was slowly breaking down.
“What? What? Why did he give you his heart? It should have been him to survive! Not you! You hate me! I hate you! You’re not my mother! I want my dad back!” I snapped vigorously.
“I do too, Mal.” Kathy began crying and sat down beside me, “I do, too.” She put her arm around me and comforted me but I edged away and looked at her in disgust whilst she looked at me like she cared. I was surprised. My look of disgust faded away and I edged back toward her. We were finally mother and daughter.




PSYCHIATRIST’S HELP …but I’m not crazy!

- Malorie Winters –
Age 17 + age 18

Mum and I were finally united as a family, not as enemies. Mum was becoming a treasure to me; she was kind to me permanently. It seems we needed the memory of Dad to bring us back together. Even better, my self-harming ceased.
Unfortunately …
After a month of having such a close yet tedious family relationship, Mum’s sickle cell anaemia began to take drastic, dramatic decreasing. In other words, today is her funeral and after only a month of knowing her really well and the rest of your life being tormented with depression from her influence, I only cried for five minutes whilst everyone else there wept for hours!
I am now an orphan but I don’t live in an orphanage. By law, I should be living with Drake, my stepfather, but he doesn’t want me. He said that he couldn’t live with someone who he abused. I thought that was a reasonable solution but I kept visiting him because after all, he was considered family.
She told me the story about Dad before she died. Dad loved her so much that he offered to give her his heart but she wouldn’t accept it. Typical suicidal mum, that is! Dad bribed the doctor so that he would provide him with pills to kill him and then take his heart! The doctor lost his job of course. After that, mum was depressed. Now, present day, she’s happy that depression isn’t swallowing her.
Unfortunately, to avoid depression from consuming me other than taking little bites like it is now, Tess enrolled me in an interview with a councillor who talked me through it:
“Why is depression consuming you, Malorie?” the counsellor asked.
The counsellor had huge, round black spectacles and hair that matched them. Her hair was long, black and amazingly curly. She had a small nose to occupy such a wide, pale face and the braces in her mouth glistened a black colour as well. I got the idea that she loved the colour black and black is a colour that represents darkness and depression is like hiding in the darkness.
“I never knew who my father was. I lived a sad, dreary life with my depressed mother who is now deceased from sickle cell anaemia. Mum treated me like I didn’t matter and ignored my requests. I used to slit my wrists, arms and legs and like doing it, twistingly enough.” I whispered unconfidently.
“When you slit your wrists you feel like you can breathe again, right?” she asked.
“Exactly!” I exclaimed. She understood what I was thinking.
“When you slit your wrists, you are left with a scar that stays with you for life and if your mother had sickle cell anaemia, then it may get inherited, if she had it when you were conceived, you may die. But to get rid of depression, and ensure it remains nothing more than a bad memory, you really need a complete understanding about what it is and how it works. Depression is a mental disorder characterised by feelings of gloom and inadequacy and works by the human nervous system. There is a Sympathetic Nervous System, which initiates the stress response. Certain brain neurotransmitters have antidepressant and anti-anxiety effects.
Depression has been partly linked to low levels of neurotransmitters among other factors. Some people believe that those who participate in that risky behaviour do so because they want to and while this may be partly correct, the reason they are doing this is because it makes them feel better by boosting mood enhancing neurotransmitters which they may be low in, such as serotonin.”
“You just said a load of mumbo jumbo that I didn’t understand! How is this going to help me, Tess? How?” I asked Tess who was standing beside me.
“When you are depressed you feel like you are in the darkness – trapped – floating away on a black river on an object like a bed and buried underneath the covers with no energy to get up. You feel weak and worthless. You search for your reflection in the black river but only find,”
“The word depression, yes.” I replied intriguingly.
“That’s what you feel like … you’re in a dark, deep hole and you can’t get out. Someone offers you a ladder but you don’t take it. I’m offering you a ladder because even though you might feel so depressed and worthless, you could be an Einstein or Newton, a Michelangelo or Picasso, a Shakespeare or teacher. You have potential to become anything you want but you throw it away for feeling gloomy. You only feel gloomy for a while. You can work past it and live your life. You can find a way … just grab that ladder.”
Seeing a councillor helped me tremendously. But it was because I forced myself into grabbing that ladder. I wanted to get better. I wanted to see the light at the end of the "tunnel". She was someone to talk to whom I knew would keep what I said private. Someone who could offer advice to me that people who cared about me might have overlooked. She was someone who listened, without telling me that what I was saying was foolish or wrong, because of course your family care about you, even though I don’t have one anymore. I forgot that when I spoke to her. She became my friend and I understood why I was depressed.
Depression became just a breeze. Depression wasn’t creeping in on me in different forms … it was running away from me because I fought it! I felt strong for fighting it! I met new friends who dragged their depression along behind them like an anchor that wont reach the bottom of the sea. I know I’ve used that simile before but it’s an acquainting one. I helped my friends work their way out of depression. I offered them a ladder and they climbed it to the top where the prize was happiness! I was gradually joining them with the help of antidepressant pills.


- Carrie Stanza –

I felt so guilty leaving that baby to die and it has acted like a dark cloud looming over me for twenty-one years! During those twenty-one years, I did get revenge on my father for what he did to my mother. He abused her and tried to kill her.
My revenge was accomplished, successful and devious, reflecting my ominous characteristics effectively.
I am an ominous, twisted girl from a poverty-covered house that soon developed into a shadowy depression and worked my way through to luminous happiness. I made it to luminous happiness because I enhanced my confidence by training to be an actress. I had an idol that I was once afraid of. She won three Oscars and was as depressed as hell. Television made a big deal out of it but she worked through it. She discovered that she had a daughter instead of a victim. How do I know this? I teach Malorie about depression after twenty-one years of training.
Malorie comes to me every other day and talks about these things. She doesn’t know who I am but I gave her a hint:
“I used to know a girl like you. I helped her mother look after her but when I was given the responsibility, I ruined it by leaving the oven on and burning her mouth with really hot food.”
Malorie laughed at it but if she understood the prospect, experienced the horror of that day that caused me to be depressed and research it for twenty-one years, she wouldn’t laugh at it.
Every time I talk to her, she keeps bringing up the same commend trend:
‘I always feel paranoid, you know, like someone is watching me.’
I used my own experiences of that feeling to help her out.

- Malorie Winters –
Age 19 + age 20

It was horrible being depressed. It was like being extracted by an intercepting black hole and coming out the other side to sadness. I think one of the worst parts of it is that I knew that I couldn’t see the world like a normal person. It was like being blind. There are some things in life that I will never be able to feel without that heavy depression dragging me down and tinting my vision.
I now realise that you can’t just cut yourself and expect all your troubles trapped in a net in the darkness to escape into the luminous light and expect you to follow them.
You can escape depression by realisation: you need to let go of the past and grab that ladder to lead you up to the future … of happiness.
After meeting the guy that stalks me, I understood.
I was on my way to the shops when I instinctively turned around to check if he was following me and he was. He was carrying a notepad and camera.
“Why do you keep following me?” I asked shrilly.
“You are Malorie Winters, right?” he asked.
“Yes, why?” I asked suspiciously.
“Hi, I’m Peter Looter. I’m the reason your mother, stepfather, real father, “Aunty” and friends have been feeling paranoid like someone is always watching.”
“Why have you been watching us? We’re not interesting.” I complained. There was a large distance between us so our proxemics showed our opinions of each other.
“Ah, but you are interesting! You were all depressed, right?” he asked anxiously with a large, comforting smile maintained across his face.
“Well, my mum was depressed but I don’t know about the others.” I replied.
“I’ve been recording all of the … incidents … of your life in a notebook to be filed later. I’ve been writing a novel and article about people who are depressed, you see. But there is something I should tell you. You particularly. If I told all of the people I have stalked, I would be ripped to shreds. I’m a coward, yes. I’ve been waiting all these years to only tell you when all of the others have … let’s just say, gone.” Peter Looter said eagerly.
Peter Looter had dark brown hair and seemed to have a twitchy dance problem because his feet would constantly move left and right whilst he talked. He wore shiny, blue oval spectacles that reflected the moonlight now streaking through the dark. He was wearing a black suit and a black hat. He had a suitcase in his right hand, a notebook in his left hand and a camera wrapped around his neck.
“All of them have gone? Even my stepfather?” I asked in surprise.
“Well, he’s left the country to try and escape his depression but you can never escape it. You have to … forget it.” Peter replied.
“What do you need to tell me, then? Be quick, my boyfriend is waiting for me.” I asked irritably.
“I’m the reason your mother tried to hang herself at West Park. I was the leader of a gang of ruthless idiots that wanted to hunt down your father under my order. I was the bully that influenced your stepfather and your “aunty” to have different opinions about their weight. I adopted Cry and brainwashed him into violence. I wrote the love letter that was supposedly from your father to your mother. I gave your stepfather the idea t lie about his death. Yes, I’m the reason those people were depressed and suicidal. I’ve been watching their progress ever since.” Peter Looter said calmly and slowly.
I was in horror after hearing him say that! I felt physically sick from the disgusting, macabre speech that influenced my blood to run cold.
“What, so y-you were treating their misery like an experiment!” I snapped vigorously. My tone was ecstatically livid!
“I’m also the reason why Tess is about to jump off the building behind us. She’ll decide not to, don’t worry.” Peter promised but I was in even more horror than before!
“That’s twisted!” I snapped. I began to shiver from the realisation that it was cold.
“It may be, but hopefully the book will sell and the article will cause a different opinion about the states of depression these people went through.”
“B-but why did you want to tell me that?” I asked, backing away slowly.
“I needed you to know. I needed you to understand so at least one of you could live happily. You know, like an anomaly in the data of the depressed people. That would be interesting to read.” He replied anxiously.
“How will I live happily after hearing that?” I asked, bewildered.
“You’ll see.” He smirked at me so I backed away even further, “Do you realise where you are?”
“Erm …” I looked around but it was too dark to see anything properly.
“You’re at West Park. West Park seems to be a place of interest to all of the people I have studied closely. You see that rusty, old pole over there,” he pointed to a bent pole in the distance, “That’s where your mother tried to hang herself and over there,” Peter now pointed over to the street beside West Park, “That’s where your father was haunted by a gang called ‘North Shot’, my gang.”
“Really? I didn’t think Mum and Dad had such a weird past connection.” I said, suddenly intrigued because he was talking about my father.
“Well, you didn’t really know your parents all too well, did you?” Peter insisted.
I gave a curt nod.
“I want you to go and live your life. Depression isn’t what is holding you back. Memories are holding you back.”
“How would you know? You don’t even know me!” I snapped.
“I’ve been following you since you were two so I think I know a great ordeal about you.”
“Okay then, what’s my favourite genre of music and film?” I asked anxiously.
“You like rock music and your favourite film genre is horror. You tried watching romance but didn’t like it.” Peter replied with a smile.
The shock I was experiencing increased in humidity and tension. “Get out of my life.” I whispered.
“I will. Once you’ve had this.” Peter pulled out a small red case, similar to one that would contain a ring, from his pocket, “Keep this with you until next time we meet.”
I tried to pry it open but it was budged. “It won’t open.” I complained. I shook the small red case and heard something clinking around inside.
“That’s the beauty of it.” Peter smirked then walked away, leaving me in the most perplexed position of my life.

/ . /
- Drake Carter –

I have been on the meds (Celexa) for about 3 weeks. Even in that short amount of time, I've come to feel much better. I can't remember ever feeling so good in my life. Things are much clearer to me: I have less anxiety, and I feel content with life, despite the things that go wrong. I have had some side effects, but most of those went away in the first couple days. The only things that I still have are dry mouth; trouble falling asleep, though this might not be the medicine. The side effects are more than worth the drastic improvement in mood. People have noticed it, so it's not just me.
I used to be against medicines, especially if they were relatively new like Celexa is, but I wish I'd given in earlier because living is so much easier now than it ever has ever been.
However, I have collided with a lot of conflict since I got here. I’ve been at gunpoint three times this week, including now. You walk down the depressed, violent streets and soon meet someone who wants to steal something from you. I was pressed against the alley wall with a small pocket gun pressed to my head. I heard the gun click and he threatened me to give up what I had in my hand but I refused. What was in my hand was precious to me. The consequences were inevitable, of course.

Don’t hide away and waste years of your life being depressed, if you treat it soon, you can be happy. Just like I was, even though I’m living in a poor country and I’m anorexic again …

- Malorie Winters –
Age 19 + age 20

I visited Mum and Dad’s grave that morning. The graves were beside each other so they were finally united. I lay down some lilies on Mum’s grave because they were her favourite tumescent flower and Dad, well, I didn’t know what flower he liked so I just brought him his memory log and placed it so it leant against the gravestone.
I began to weep for them both and felt like they were with me. I looked to the sky for a sign and a pair of doves flew by and surprisingly landed on each gravestone. A dove represents love and peace. I took it as a sign that they loved me and that life was at peace, no longer consumed by the irritating clockwork of your heart and the throbbing pain eased by depression.
I cautiously made my way home by crossing the busy road where cars shot by at the atrocious speed limit. I watched the cars carefully and thought:
If your life goes too fast you miss everything. If you’re depressed and life goes slow, you can see everything but you wont open your eyes.
I didn’t check both ways – I just kept walking and hoped that I would finally escape the suppression of depression by the reuniting with my parents.
I closed my eyes. I prayed that one car would hit me. The first car skidded to a halt so it wouldn’t hit me.
The second car on the other side of the road, luckily, had a maniac driver.
My heart was pounding against my chest. I closed my eyes again and … stopped … I stopped in the middle of a hectic road. The Mercedes car neared and tried to skid to a halt but the collision was inevitable.
A sharp, quick stab of pain suddenly overwhelmed me everywhere in my body and then … it stopped. I … I …


- Malorie Winters –

When life seems like it’s failing on you, you search for an encouraging push factor to guide you away from the darkness consuming you. When you’re floating away on the black river with the word depressed looking up at you, the hope for someone to pull you out of the trapped past increases.
You try to throw away those incidents like pebbles onto the black river, trying to skim them to the other side. When you think of these incidents, the river you’re now floating away on becomes the sea. The incidents are too large to condense down into luminous happiness.
Depression is like being on a beach. You pick up little grains of sand and they run through your fingers. You then pick up pebbles and stones but they don’t run through your fingers, because they’re bigger. The depressing incidents in your life are just like those pebbles and stones – you can’t get rid of them very well by letting them run through your fingers and forgetting them, you need the help to get rid of them, like the sea washing them away.
Even if the incidents are discovering a father; forgetting to hang yourself and having a laugh with your friends instead; escaping a gang fight that will never stop haunting you; breaking free of anorexia; working past a murderous past mistake; loosing weight; using truth to cover a lie; reading a tearful letter from a loved one or maybe, just maybe, destroying depression.
I did go back to West Park to retrieve what my Dad left for me and stared furiously up at the rusty old pole that Mum once admired from her suicidal habits.
I pocketed the memory log after reading yet another memory. I started to become my Dad, following his guidance. I lit a fire underneath the slide and began to write my problems on some of the five-pound notes and threw them into the fire. I know it seems a stupid thing to do but I didn’t need all this money! All I wanted was to free myself of all the problems placed on my shoulders like a pile of bricks, building up my stress. Dad’s guidance did help and I soon found myself making similar decisions to what he believed.
I stared down from the plane at my pernicious previous home where so many incidents have added to the large dark cloud looming over us that I’m now bursting through towards happiness. I grabbed the ladder to help me out of the dark, and I’m taking fifty million pounds with the memory of Mum and Dad guiding me there.

- Epilogue -

- Malorie Winters –

With the stress of three children, it’s difficult to finally be happy but we’re getting there. I live in America with my husband and depression has never been a dark cloud in years.
Of course, I had to bring Tess along with me. She insisted on helping me care for the children and I couldn’t exactly turn down the offer, could I? She freed herself of her depression like I did.
Kathy, my eldest daughter, is a musician and stays in her room permanently. If I try to talk to her, she puts notices on her door and then closes it again. I didn’t understand Kathy and she didn’t understand me. That’s a basic mother and daughter relationship, though, isn’t it? She always has her curtains closed because she loves the colour black.
Michael, my second oldest child, is always crying about something. I ask him what he’s crying about and he throws something at me. His name is Michael Winters, just like his grandfather. Michael is always reading, too. I saw him reading ‘The Bell Jar’ yesterday and I began to get concerned. He also had his curtains permanently closed because he loved the darkness. Michael loves to act so I enrolled him in an after school Theatre Group. I have to watch him carefully though incase he joins gang conflict …
Tess is my youngest daughter and she loves the sunshine, so she doesn’t have her curtains closed permanently. Tess loves to go fishing and I go with her sometimes and we usually catch pike. However, her name does get confusing because there are two Tess’ in the same house!
Our house is a five-story mansion, so everyone has his or her own floor! It’s amazing here, living in a huge, modern house in the countryside. I even have the peace and quiet to write a book … about depression, of course.
All my children wonder whom their father is because he left me for a much younger, more beautiful woman. I keep telling them that he found a much better place to live, which is of course a lie.
The darkest part of having a family is that you find things unexpected. Recently, I was cleaning Kathy’s room and found a kitchen knife covered in her own blood and a half-written suicide note beside it. In Michael’s room, I found a collection of penknives he secretly bought (or stole). In Tess’ room, there was a diary full of comments that she was alone with no friends and wanted a relationship so much that she’d die for one.
Kathy is searching the whole house for anything that will help her find her father and is having weekly counseling because of her depression.
I sighed deeply.
Here we go again!