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The poor girl shivered in the snow. Her face bright red, her fingers turning purple. She pulled her arms and legs into her shirt, hoping it would help. Only a little.
Missy sat, contemplating and regretting the moments leading up to this. This moment that could very well be her last.
It was a very cold day in December. Missy liked the cold.
The ice was thick and smooth. She leaped into the air, spun four times, and landed gracefully, going around in a very small figure 8.
If there was anything she loved more than anything, which there was, it was skating. In the summer, she replaced the blades with wheels, to stay in shape.
But the ice was her main element. Her ice skate were the best tool in he arsenal. She pointed her feet, and lifted one. She spun more times than she could count, and spread her arms out to her side as she slowed.
She bowed before her audience. Well, hypothetical audience. Missy rarely got an audience. Occasionally a passer-by would stop and appreciate her talent, or somebody would be taking a break from their own skating and watch, but nobody was around that day. Not that she saw.
So it surprised her hearing a light clap. She turned in a circle, looking for the source, when a boy her age walked out from behind a tree nearby.
“That was great.” he said. He was very good looking. With short black hair in a obviously intentional cut, and the flawless face, Missy wondered if this was a synthom of an illness. She was wearing a thick coat, and mittens, so it had nothing to do with the cold.
So he was real. But the strange thing was, that he was just wearing a t-shirt, jeans, and sneakers. Was it really a lot hotter than Missy thought it was? She had to tell herself that it couldn’t be just him.
“Where’d you learn to skate?” he asked.
Missy shrugged, and slowly skated closer to him. “I took basic lessons when I was four, and I guess I’ve just been practicing a lot.”
“What’s your name?”
“Missy. Missy Adams. Yours?”
“Richard Prescott. I’m fifteen. How old are you?”
“Fifteen. You go to school here?” Missy was secretly rejoicing inside. He was her age!
“Nah. I’m home-schooled. You come here often?” Missy was beginning to feel a bit warm. She unzipped her coat.
“Pretty much every day in winter. When the ice is good.” She stepped off the ice, and sat on a nearby bench which she had set her shoes on. “What about you?” she asked, unlacing her skates.
“I don’t really like skating. But you’re terrific!”
“You think?” Missy took off her left skate, and got started on the right.
“Yeah. You ever compete?”
“Nah. There’s not much contests here.” Missy took off her right skate, and put her shoes on.
“You should travel for one.” Richard said with a light smile.
“Well I don’t like wasting my time for just a contest. Besides. I don’t even want to be a skater when I’m older. I want to be a musician.” Missy was now feeling really hot. She took off her coat. She now sat in a purple Aeropostle jacket.
“What do you play?” Richard seemed literally interested. Thank goodness!
“I play piano, guitar, trumpet, saxophone, flute, and I sing a bit.”
“Awesome. You got some talent. I only can play the bass clarinet. Not very impressive.”
“You kidding? I’ve always wanted to play bass clarinet! But I don’t have enough air.”
“Yeah. It’s big. Jeez. You feeling hot?”
How was Richard feeling hot? Oh yeah. “Yeah. Totally.” Missy said stripping off her jacket. She now sat in a red tank top.
“You going home?” Richard asked.
“Mind me walking with you? I know a shortcut out of here. Where do you live?”
“Oak Street. Know where that is?”
“Yeah. It’s on the way to my house.”
Turns out this shortcut was just a quick walk to the road through the snow. Missy and Richard walked slowly, Richard carrying some of her things.
Missy was surprised when the snow kicked up. A raging blizzard soon followed. Missy shielded her eyes from snow, and laughed. “Wow! Getting pretty bad. Can I have my coat back?”
Still no answer.
“Where are you?”
Richard was gone. Her coat and jacket were gone. All she had left were her skates. What a lot of good they did there in the middle of the snow.
Was Richard simply a hallucination? It was a very convincing one. Did she leave her coat and jacket at the pond? Probably.
Missy decided to retrace her steps back, but it was so snowy, that she went simply by memory. When she tripped and rolled down a hill, she totally lost her sense of direction.
Now she lay in the snow. Not sure what would become of her.
Missy spread her arms out, and didn’t care what happened. She would die. Thanks to a handsome guy. Or dream. Who knows.
Her vision went black, and then she fell in the darkness herself.
Her eyes snapped open. She was back at the pond. She was covered in about seven blankets.
Somebody sat over her. A girl her age. “Oh thank goodness! You’re up!”
“Huh? What happened? Who are you?” Missy was freaking out.
“I found you in the snow bank over there in just your tank top! I think you got hypothermia. I’ve heard it can cause hallucinations.”
This girl had no idea.