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Author's note: This story was the first story I ever wrote when I was a lot younger.
Lucy lived an average life in the heart of the countryside, but was far more than an average fourteen year old. Lucy was a kind, caring person with a mind full of thoughts that she would never share with anyone else. Lucy was quiet and as secretive as a mouse.
Her appearance was very ordinary. She had short dark brown hair that spiked up around her little ears, and her eyes sparkled brighter than a pool of diamonds. The bright blue colour could melt even the toughest person’s heart. She wore lose and baggy jeans with a gaping great hole at the knee, and a jumper that her aunty had knitted for her, with the roughest wool. This one of a kind jumper showed a lovely cartoon dog and cat perched upon a mat. Lucy hated this jumper more than anything she had ever received but of course she did not tell anyone, all of her thoughts were secret so of course she had no choice but to wear the hideous jumper. Lucy was not the smartest person but was not dumb at all. She knew right from wrong and she was pleased with her progress at school. Her parents took no interest in her school life; they did at the start but they got fed up with asking her time after time about her day and her just sulking off to her bedroom to be alone. Lucy was an only child and was not good in social situations. She had some good friends but she still preferred to be alone and to herself.
Lucy lived in a modest house next to fields of sheep and stables full of the fairest of horses. The fields stretched for miles either side of the house rolling past the horizon. It was a long way to Lucy’s school and the nearest village but it was all worth it for the views and the fresh country air. Her father worked from home in a little office towards the back of the house, and was constantly locked up in it calculating numbers and singing to the radio. Her mum worked with horses in the field next to her house. She owned a large set of stables and taught young people how to ride. Lucy had her own horse, he was a beautiful dark chestnut stallion, but Lucy was never into horses and her mother thought that it be better for the young horse to live with someone that would actually care for it and give it regular attention.
One day, a day like any other her father was in his office and her mother in the field. When all of a sudden... knock, knock, knock on the front door. Lucy prised herself from her book; Wind in the Willows, and jumped down the stairs; she was in a very rare happy mood. Her father was already standing at the door with a stunned look on his pale face. A large man in a black coat was standing at the door. He bent down as he walked through the front door, and headed for the living room followed by her father shaking like he had been put in the freezer for hours, and had just been freed. Lucy sat on the stairs and peered through her nerves. The man had a very stern look on his face and he did not look like he had come bearing good news. The man wore heavy looking books and deep blue glasses; Lucy pondered on the glasses for a moment as she looked outside and thought about how little sun there was on this day. When she turned back to look at the brutal looking man, he had disappeared into the living room and the door had been closed. It seemed to Lucy as if a secret meeting had just begun in her own living room.
Lucy slowly lifted herself from the stairs and made her way back to her bedroom. Lucy’s head was full of thoughts. She wanted to know so much about the new visitor. Who was he and why he had come to her house. Why did he look so miserable and menacing, and most of all why is he wearing sunglasses on a day with no sun! Once she reached her bedroom she dived underneath her bed and just lay there in amongst the dust and the shoe boxes. Under her bed was the safest place to swim in her thoughts. She felt as if she had another world under her bed, a safe, secure world. After five minutes of pure thinking she grabbed a particularly old and damaged looking shoe box that sat beneath the head of her bed. This box had the word thoughts written on the side in a thick black marker pen. She turned awkwardly, scratching her arm and ripping her jumper on a rusty spring and rolled out from underneath her bed. She sat up, and examined the damage. Not much blood but the jumper would definitely need stitching before the hole got any bigger. She unwillingly pulled it off just in time to feel a cold gust pass her body and send a chill down her spine. She threw the jumper on the floor and grabbed her blanket. Soon she was wrapped tightly by the fluffy, warm blanket and she relaxed a little before she remembered the box she had taken from under the bed.
Lucy placed her hand upon the lid of the box and pulled upwards. Parts of the tatty box came away in her hand. She threw them to one side. Once the lid was off Lucy gazed at three maroon notebooks sitting inside. Her thoughts were enclosed in these notebooks; she only trusted the crisp white paper, no person is as quiet as paper. People have tried to get her to trust them but never have they succeeded. Even her friends don’t know what she likes or dislikes. Every time Lucy thinks something important or of some importance to her she writes it down in her notebook. Lucy opened the notebook on the top of the pile and flicked off the lid of the pen lying next to it. She started to write. Lucy was coming to the end of her third notebook so she made the entry short, though her thoughts were not. Her pen was silver with a red strip down one side. And it wrote smoother than a pen from heaven. Lucy trusted her pen and paper and once she had finished writing she put the lid back on stuffed her notebook back in the box and slid the box under her bed once again. She stared at her door for one moment before plucking up the courage to venture downstairs to see if the strange man had left.
By the time Lucy had managed to get downstairs her father and mother were sitting at the dining room table her mother crying into her tea, her father’s arm was draped around her like a snake draped on a tree branch. Tears rolled off her face like a river roaring down a valley. The strange man was nowhere to be seen. Her father’s face became pale as he looked up to see his daughter standing in the hall staring right at her weeping mother. He got up from the table and walked towards Lucy. His walk was that of a soul that had given up from standing tall and proud, and had fallen into a never ending pit of sorrow.
“Pack a bag as if you were going a way for a couple of weeks,” he mumbled
“Why?” whimpered Lucy
“JUST DO IT!” he shouted suddenly, as if that one word Lucy had said had set off a violent spark in his body.
Lucy felt tears in her eyes, she just wanted to know what was going on, and she had never been shouted at like that before. She found herself running up the stairs and packing whatever she could find into a small leather case. Her blanket, her underwear, her favourite jeans and loads of shirts. Then she moved slowly and carefully towards her chest of drawers sitting in the corner of her room, and opened up the top draw. She moved pairs of red and yellow socks to reveal a new pristine condition notebook. This one was a lime green colour. She picked it up as if it were a bar of gold and placed it on top of her clothes and sipped up the case. She pulled it off her bed and jarred her shoulder with the sudden wait of it. She panicked through the pain and rushed downstairs clinging to her case. Her father was waiting for her at the front door. He said nothing but led her outside. Lucy followed.
“Is mum ok?” asked Lucy waiting nervously for a reply as she tossed the case in the car boot and loaded herself into the front seat.
A reply never came, just a deepening silence. The car engine started with a grump and a roar and Lucy and her father set off.
“Where are you taking me?” questioned Lucy knowing inside that again she would get no reply. Her heart sank and she pushed her bottom forward on the car seat to lower herself. The fear of the unknown bewildered her. She started shaking violently.
“Stop it, for goodness sake child, you are going to your aunties house for a few weeks, just so that your mother and I can sort some things out...no more questions.”
Lucy stared out the window and her thoughts turned into over drive. What things did they need to sort out? She thought long and hard about any possibilities, but could think of none. She could not get that visitor out of her head. She thought it must be his fault, whatever has gone wrong. Field after field passed, until finally the village of Goose came into view. It was a small village with one shop, one pub and around 30 houses. Lucy secretly loved the village of Goose she thought it was the same as one of those model villages but supersized. She loved the fact that everyone knew each other and trusted one another. She knew that she would never be able to live in a place like that. Her thoughts turned to her aunty. Her aunty (the one who had knitted her the jumper) was her dad’s sister. She was a nice lady, rather plain though. She lived on her own with her pet cat, Blacky. Lucy loved visiting Blacky, she was so soft to touch and she loved a cuddle. Blacky was a living notebook to Lucy, she would sit for hours round her aunties, on her own, talking to Blacky as she knew that, being a cat Blacky could not say anything to anyone.
The car came to a sudden stop and Lucy shock her head and came back to reality. She lifted her head and looked out the window. The car was parked on a paved driveway of a grand, detached house with ivy running up both sides. It was a large Victorian styled house that had been modernised to suit daily life. Lucy pushed the car door open and was very quickly overwhelmed by the striking size of the house towering over her. She got out and went to get her case out of the boot. Lucy dragged her case up the cobbled little garden path passing beds of blooming roses and pansies. The smell of the flowers hit her noise quite suddenly but pleasantly. Lucy smiled inside. The grass had been freshly cut and there was not one strand that was longer than any other. Every strand looked as if it had been measured and cut with a pair of kitchen scissors. Lucy, knowing her Aunty thought it was quite likely that she had in fact spent the weekend measuring the grass. She finally reached the front door. It was an immense door made of pure oak with carved curves and spirals. Lucy reached up and knocked as loud as she could. A few minutes later the door creaked open and Aunty Pam stood looking straight at Lucy. Aunty Pam was no taller than Lucy but rather a lot bigger. She had a short black bob style hair cut and a pair of small glasses rested on her sharp pointed noise.
“Thank you for this Pam” said Lucy’s father
“Don’t mention it, come on in Lucy,” Croaked Aunty Pam. Aunty Pam was a heavy chain smoker and the cigarettes had really taken a toll on her voice. It sounded as if every word was a struggle. Lucy could never really understand what she was saying and she often had to make her Aunty repeat herself many times.
“Good bye Lucy,” said her father running back to the car.
“When will you be back father?”Shouted Lucy in panic but the car had already been started and soon her father disappeared down the long drive.
Lucy turned on her heels to face her Aunty. Her face dropped and a single tear fell from her chin.
“Get in here girl, you can’t stay out there,” said her Aunty leading her into the magnificent house. Lucy hastily picked up her case and followed without a word.
“You will stay in the guest bedroom,” said her Aunty and she bounced up the stairs and opened the first door on the right.
“There is a spare blanket in the cupboard if you get cold and you can use the bathroom across the hall, lunch is in fifteen minutes so wash your hands unpack and come and get some food.”
“O-o-o-k-k,” stuttered Lucy.
Once the bedroom door was closed silence swept in. Lucy stood there in the tiny guest bedroom and evaluated the room. There was a plain single bed with a hand carved bedside table. There was also a tall mirror hung on a white, two door wardrobe. Lucy fell onto the bed and put her head in her hands. She sat and cried. She was so confused. She cried through lunch and she cried in the shower and she cried through putting her pyjamas on. The only time she stopped crying was when she saw Blacky try to pounce on a shadow on the wall. At this moment she laughed. She laughed the sweetest of laughs. It filled the whole houses with echoes of happiness and joy. It was not an overpowering laugh; it was a soft, delicate chuckle that stuck in anyone’s head that was lucky enough to hear it.
After four days at her Aunties house she began to relax but she was still very secluded in her head. She started to write her thoughts down in her green notebook more frequently. She would talk to Blacky all night about her nightmares and she would stay up to watch the stars from her bedroom window. She loved to go out in her Aunties garden. It was humungous. Lucy could walk for half an hour and find a spot to sit down and just be alone with her thoughts. Her favourite spot was under the giant oak tree that stood at the back of the garden sheltered from the mid-day sun. She would put her hand in the pond and talk quietly to the fish. She would find sticks and stones and pile them up in a corner. She loved to be on her own. When the weather was too horrendous to go outside she would sit in her bedroom and stare out the little window on the back wall of her bedroom. It was a round smooth glass window with steel decoration around the side. Lucy could see the whole of the garden and part of the street running beside the house. She would sit with it wide open taking in large amounts of the fresh country air. When the window was shut she felt as if she was trapped inside her room with no way to escape. She never shut her window; it was always open, even from the moment she arrived.
It was a bright Saturday morning and the birds were singing loudly in the trees. The smell of freshly cooked pancakes wafted through the house. Lucy yawned and pulled her tired body out of the snugly, warm bed and wandered towards the shower. In the shower Lucy started to think how school life will be in year ten at Down Ride secondary school. Lucy had just finished her ninth school year and was now having the summer holidays to recover from all the work. She had enjoyed year nine, as she had to read a lot of books in English. Lucy loved to read. Her favourite book was the secret garden. Lucy could read for hours as she would rather live the life of a book character than live her own. The lives of book characters were so exciting and were always an adventure with a happy ending.
Lucy stepped out of the hot shower and turned the dial and wrapped herself in a soft towel. She stood there for a while just thinking about the towel and how soft it really was. She then slipped into her clothes and ventured downstairs. Pancakes were sitting on a plate piled high. Lucy sat at the kitchen table and stared at her Aunty.
“Well...don’t you like pancakes or something? Eat!” said her aunty suddenly gesturing to the pancakes.
Lucy picked up a fork and stabbed a pancake and lifted it to her plate. Lucy had only ever had pancakes once before, round her grandma’s house. She loved them a lot and wished she could have them at home but neither of her parents enjoyed cooking enough to make them for her. Lucy sliced a rough triangle shape out of her pancake and popped it in her mouth. Suddenly her whole mouth was filled with excitement. She chewed and chewed and a warm smile settled into her face. After only two minutes she ate about five pancakes enjoying each one more than the last. Finally she sipped her orange juice and disappeared upstairs. The rest of the day was quiet until late afternoon. There had been a storm due for this day right over the village. The storm started with just some heavy rainfall but an hour later there were strong winds, heavy rain and thunder. Lucy was sitting in her bedroom with the window still wide open, letting the elements fill the room. The tree outside the window was banging loudly on the wall and making shadows in the bedroom. Lucy was trying so hard not to be scared by the storm but she could not bring herself to overcome the fear.
Suddenly a strong gust of wind sent the window crashing down to a close. Lucy jumped up and ran across the room to the window. She pushed and pushed but she could not open the window. It was stuck closed. She started to cry. She started to panic. Lucy remembered what happened when she started to panic this much before. She started to hyperventilate. Lucy told herself to calm down. She took five deep breaths then closed her eyes and tried to concentrate on something positive. After a while Lucy opened her eyes. She took a look out of the closed window. There was sun and bright sky. Lucy thought she must have dozed off. She ran down stairs.
“Aunty I’m really sorry for dozing off and missing dinner,” cried Lucy as she rushed downstairs.
“What are you talking about Lucy?” asked Aunty Pam.
At the bottom of the stairs Lucy peered out of a window. It was still raining and getting dark. Then she heard some thunder. Lucy jumped out of her skin. She was very confused.
“Err ...... don’t worry Aunty,” said Lucy running back upstairs.
Lucy rushed back into her bedroom and kneeled by the window. Outside the window it was sunny. But downstairs it was raining and there was a storm outside. Lucy was confused.
“Does this window show something different to all the other windows in the house?” asked Lucy to herself. She was very confused. She looked at her watch. She definitely had not dozed off. Lucy just stared out the window. She had never been more confused.
“I will go downstairs and check again; just to make sure I am not imagining things.”
Lucy sprinted along the hall, and stomped down the stairs.
“Stop stomping!!” shouted her Aunty from in the living room.
Lucy took no notice and carried on her way to all the windows in the house all but the one in her bedroom showed a storm outside. She paced back to her bedroom and shut the door. She kept her back to the door for a moment just staring at the little window in the wall.
“How, what, why?” Lucy pondered for ages trying to work out what was going on. Lucy moved slowly and carefully towards the closed window. She tried to push it open. There was a screech and the window opened. Rain started to pour in and the wind blew the paper from Lucy’s desk. With one fluid motion she swiftly shut the window. She sat silently on the floor and looked and the bright and beautiful scene going on outside the window. She could see a slight breeze swaying the trees and she could see heat rising from rooftops. What was this place through the window? Suddenly, from nowhere a frog jumped into the garden. Lucy was surprised to see that this wasn’t any frog this one was wearing a top hat.
“A frog in a top hat...I must be imagining things,” said Lucy to herself “my head hurts.” Suddenly Lucy went pale her heart started pumping a little too hard, her head started spinning, she fell onto the floor in a heap and the lights turned off.
A dim circle of light started to come into view. Lucy forced her eyes open. She saw just blurs. She tried ever so hard to focus and her Aunty came into view. She was standing over Lucy. Lucy sat up. She was on her bed with her feet raised by a cushion. Her Aunty was holding a cold, damp flannel to her forehead. A panicked look was on her face.
“Lucy what happened?” said Aunty Pam “I just came up to check on you and you had passed out.”
“I don’t really know,” said Lucy quietly.
“Well I opened your window to let some fresh air in.”
“Did you see the...”
“What... dear?” questioned her Aunty
“Never mind...” Lucy buried her head in her pillow. She wished she had the confidence to tell her Aunty what she had seen, but she knew that she would never believe her.
Her Aunty turned and left down the stairs. Lucy jumped up. Her head started spinning; she lowered herself, slowly back onto her bed and reminded herself that she had just fainted and that she needs to be careful. She sat there for five minutes before regaining her strength and rushing to the window.