Travel-blog-magazine-288 3

I wake up and rub my soft arm. I feel the comforting hug from the suns raise wrap round me. Thump thump. I flutter my eyes. And sigh as I feel Dylan take my hand. My head lays on his chest, right above his heart. I feel the comforting rise and fall of his breath. “Morning beautiful”. He says.

“Good morning”.

“Last nigh-“

“shh” I say softly “I can hear your heartbeat”.

“Good to know its there” he jokes.

I let out a slight giggle. He takes his watch from the bedside table.

“Oh I better get up” he says.

“No, please let’s stay like his all day”. I beg

“Why do I get the feeling your trying to avoid something?” he says.

I look up from his chest.

“That’s probably because your right”. I confess.

He looks at me begging for an explanation.

“Im going to pick up a few things from my old room….from mum”. I explain. He nods.

“Why are you so ashamed around her” he asks rolling me over on to the bed and slightly sitting up. “Is it because you’re ashamed of me?” he asks.

I look at his crystal clear eyes. I wrap my hands around his neck and trace his jaw line with my finger, until they reach his lips.

“Your one choice I’ll never regret”. I whisper. He smiles back at me. He pulls in and touches his soft lips to mine. A feeling that stops my heart. Every time. He pulls back slightly. I feel his warm breath pierce though me. Creating goose bumps to my toes. His lips are just barely touching mine when he utters.

“Marry me?”. I give a small smile, hardly doing justice to the feeling inside.

“Yes” I answer. His lips press mine. And for a few seconds I’m no where but here.

He pulls me in. I feel his strong firm hands rest on my back. And tighten my hair.

I grin. I feel a sudden jolt go though his body.

“Oh sorry are you cold? here ill pu-“

His whole body limps on to mine. I can barely breath because he’s body has collapsed on mine. “Dylan” I laugh

Get off me?” I ask, half imply.

“Seriously Dylan I can breathe”. I say much more serious. I feel the air quickly escaping my lungs. Still no response. I roll Dylan off the bed in a desperate attempt to breathe. I choke in the air. The burring in my lungs quickly goes away. My eye quickly catches the shine on my hands. I looks closer and realize its blood.

I look to my chest and realize I’m layered in it. I don’t feel a wound, but it must be there.

“Dylan. I’m bleeding! Where from? I can’t see a wound where is it?” I yell

I grow frantic trying to find my wound. I’m padding down my body looking for pain. Yet I found none. I turn to Dylan growing frustrated that his not helping. As soon as I look at him I notice the gaping hole in his chest. And the red die surrounding it. I leap out of the bed and jump to him cupping his face in my hands.

“DYLAN” I yelp. He was already cold.

Chapter 2

I know what you’re thinking. Who did it? Is he really dead? Is Clea shot too? How did this happen? Does he come back to life as some sort of zombie? It just a dream? Well I could sit here and answer your questions or I could explain how this happened. I guess the best way to do that is to go back to the start, where it all begins.

BEEP BEEP my alarm blears. I reach over to turn it off. But decide against it. If I leave it going there’s no chance of me drifting back asleep. The sound pierces my ears. I feel my brain knock on my skull begging the sound to stop. But I resist. Eventually I’m fully alert. I flick the alarm off. I put my dressing gown on and open my curtains. My eyes squint, and eventually my eye accept the inevitable light. .

I walk to my desk and collect my notes. And pile it into one neat folder.

I hear a pleasant ring in the kitchen; I walk out of my room and past the hallway to my steaming cup of coffee waiting for me under the coffee maker. Ahhh I swear the inventor of timing coffee. Deserves all the money he made from them. It’s a god sent. I stake a sip of the scolding liquid. And burn my tong like I do every morning. You think I would learn by now. I set the coffee down and I hear my roommates door squeak.

“Hey sienna” I say brightly.

“Morning clea”. She says back. “How did you sleep”. She asks.

“Yeah alright although I was..” I realize that sienna is not paying attention, she too busy kissing her fiancé who has just emerged from the bedroom.

“Yeah so I’m pregnant .,,,with triplets….I’m going to put them up for adoption. Although I think I will keep one…I’m not sure which one…. Maybe ill just pick the cutest one.” I say looking down at my paper. Practically talking to myself. She’s still not listening. “Oh and by the way, I used your nail polish”. I say sarcastically.

“What?” she says abruptly

“I said I slept well”. I answer.

“Oh ok, by mat”. She sys with a quick peck on the cheek, he leaves.

“You should get ready”. I say

“Yeah, should I wear the gray or black one?”.

“hmmmmm grey”.

“Okay”. She goes back into her room.

Sienna is my best friend. We’ve known each other since I was 13, and my father died. Her father used to work with mine, and when he passed she came to the funeral. That’s how we met.

“Sorry about your dad”. She said in a pimply voice.

“Not your fault”. I replied.

“I know but I’m still sorry.” She said. And she took my hand and held it during the whole funeral. From then on we have been inseparable.

She comes out in a very sophisticated gray suit. Her skirt is just above the knee, and she’s wearing a V neck suit. Her long layered black hair falls beautiful on her chest. A tiny bit of make-up lights up her face. She is the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen. Her crystal blue eyes can pierce though any man. And yet she settles for such a slime ball like matt.

Matt. How to explain him. He’s a self centered arrogant jerk. And from the first moment I met him. I could feel those evil eyes scan me. I know he’s going to hurt her I just know it. But sienna refuses to see it. As much as I love her, I have to let her make her mistakes. I’ve told her how I feel. That’s all I can do.

I go to the bathroom and put on a small amount of make-up, and get dressed in my black suit. God I hate what lawyers have to wear.

“Hey babe do you have those witness statements?” I yell though the hallway

“No you have them”.

“No, I gave them to you after I said goodbye Mr. Jacobs. Remember?

“No I gave them to YOU after you said goodbye to Mr. Jacobs.”

We meet in the hallway.

“So who has them”?

“Um”. She looks at me blankly. The next half an hour is spent Turing the house upside down trying to find the statements. I was hired one month ago but Clark Jacobs to prove that he did not commit the murder of Vala Jacob. His wife. She was poisoned by the very same poison that he uses to kill rats in his pest control business. His prints are all over her. And there are a bunch of witness’s saying they saw him make the coffee. He was holding some sort of cocktail party. She got drunk, passed out and he put her to bed, and made a coffee for her. I have to admit. It looks bad, but he said he didn’t do it. I’ve never lost a case and I’m not planning to start. I hear the phone ring. I answer it and hear Hamish’s voice.

“Hey, you ready for me to pick you up?”

“Yeah I guess”.

“Ok see you soon, and by the way ill bring that folder you left in the car”.

“Ohhh there it is yes please do!”

“Ok see u in 10”.

He hangs up the phone.

“Hey sienna! Hamich has it”.

“Has what”.

“The statements”. I yell

“Oh right those”. I roll my eyes at her lack of concentration.

I take a sip of my coffee and realize its cold…oh well coffees coffee. I scoff it down. And do the daily cross word. I hear the car horn beep.

“Sienna, Hamich I here!”. I yell


When we arrive t he court I take my mirror from my bag and check my make-up.

“Your fine” sienna nags.

“Yeah, yeah”. I apply another coat of lip-gloss. And head into to the courtroom. It’s a very standard court room. Cushioned seats. Wooden walls. Oak jury bench. The usual. I walk to the right side of the room and sit behind the “defendants” desk. I nod to the prosecution. A man named Mr. Darwin. He’s the one trying to get life in prison for my client. Sienna thinks Jacobs Is innocent. . But I me I’m not so sure. She says he was so in love with her it’s impossible. I guess she right he did love her. He spent a month grieving over her in his cell. And every time he talks about her death he can barely speak. But all the evidence points to him. The problem is the motive? There’s always a motive. Money usually. But he owned everything. A love crime? No impossible she was just as devoted as him. Anything. Everything doesn’t fit there’s simply no motive. I notice the painting on the wall next to me. It’s bland. It as a picture of a colorless meadow with a girl in a long gray dress staring blankly at the canvas. This isn’t art. I mean sure. Its paint on a canvas drawn\created by a person. But its not art. I have the sudden urge to color it with crayons. But I resist instead I’m organizing my papers into a neat pile on the desk in front. Sienna sits down next to me.

“Hey, you ready?”. She asks while pulling out a few papers from her briefcase.

“Yeah guess so”. I reply

“Remember to focus on the “no motive” aspect of he case, don’t focus on the “evidenced” par- “. She trances.

“Pie, I’m fine”. I say with a reassuring smile. She sighs.

Ever since we were kids I’ve called her pie. One time we were having a sleep over, and I dared her to give herself a pie facial. I didn’t think she would do it. But she did. And from then she’s been pie.

As I’m brushing my fringe back the doors open and Mr. Jacobs sits next to me.

“Good morning clea”. He says with a warm smile.

“Good morning, how are you”.

“Alright ready to win myself a case”.

I smile

“All rise”. The judges guard grunts. Everyone in the room silences, and all stand. Including me.

I expect Judge Thompson to step out. She’s the one who has been overseeing our case. Of course she’s just there to keep order. The juries are the ones we must convince.

A muscular man steps out from the doorway. He his very strong built and has blue eyes with brown hair. With a hint of blond streaks.

He walks to the judge’s podium, and I start to really wonder. It’s always judge Thompson. Why are they sending this guy? He hands three folders to the guard. And whispers something in his ear.

We take a few steps toward to microphone. His strong voice silences the whispers going around in the room.

“Hello. We would like to inform you that this case has been officially resolved. Mr. Jacobs will be released . And the case will be dropped.” At that he leaves. everyone gasps ad then begin to protest. The guard hands me one of the three folders. On the front is the white house’s official stamp. I glance at the other two folders. One is in the juries hands the other is in the prosecutions. Everyone is very confused. Technically this Is illegal dismissing a case before solved. I glace up at the man. He catches my eye. And stares at me strongly. I feel his eyes pierce though mine. And I feel him probing my mind. Searching though my thoughts. Picking them out one by one. Then storing them in his. Before I have time to consider what’s going on. He looks away and the feeling immediately halts and fades away.

As he walks back the way he came I here cheering in the room, and also anger rising between those who believe his guilty. However I don’t pay much attention to this. Instead I notice as the man walking away he has a tattoo of a sphere shape something. As I squint my eyes I realize it’s a planet.

One I’ve never seen before. All of the sudden it flashes a bright blue. And then vanishes. He feels around what used to be a tattoo, and is now skin. He scans he room nervously. When he sees me staring. She squints at me and begins to grow anxious. I quickly move away from eyeshot, and begin to celebrate with sienna and Mr. Jacobs. When he walks back into the room I take a look at his neck. The tattoo is gone. Whatever that tattoo was of. I know it wasn’t earth. And I know it didn’t belong in this galaxy.


“What do you think your doing?” Mr. Darwin asks aggressively.

“i..didn..this wasn’t. my..”.

“Spit it out girl. I thought you were a lawyer? Well obviously you’re not a very good one. You had to go to your connections to win this one ehh?” he regards.

My anger at his comment promotes action.

“Excuse me. First of all my name is clea min, and you will address me as Miss Main.. Secondly I am a highly respected lawyer in California. And you will treat me as such. And thirdly I am just as confused at today’s announcement as you are. I had nothing to do with the judgment.” I say strongly. “Anything else?”

He looks baffled. Here I am this twenty two year old putting this I’m guessing this 45 year old in his place. I feel empowered, and he looks confused.


“Good. Now if you will excuse me I will take my client to collect his things. Come Sienna.” I ask forceful taking her arm, and Mr. Jacobs walks with me without force.

“What was that?”. Sienna whispers.

“shh, hold me up I might faint.” I whisper back. She laughs.

Mr. Jacobs goes back to his cell to collect the last of his things one of them a picture of his wife. She was one of those people who you could tell used to be stunning when they were younger. She had long blond hair.

Florescent pearly white teeth. And deep blue eyes.

“I realize I never asked you this before but. How did you meet Vala?”

He took a second to answer.

“We had an arranged marriage”. He says to my surprise.

“Wow, I didn’t know they still did those I mean…they do in India, but in America?”

“Well, it wasn’t officially arranged, but my parents had always talked about me marring her. Ever sine I was a little kid. But, one day when I was 23 I brought home Skye Robbins. A young fee loving hippie as she said. And my parents described her as a young pot head. They wouldn’t let me marry her… and instead gave me Vala”.

“Wow…….. Did you love her.” I ask

He takes a minute, before tears begin to well in his eyes.

“You know it’s strange. The first two years of our marriage, I despised her. Mainly because I blamed her for taking Skye away from me. But, one day I came home from work. She came to me and sat me down and told me my father had died. I started to yell at her, once again I found myself blaming her for everything. She took my hand to consol me. I pushed her to the ground. I hated her. I told her she was never to touch me again. Of course I would expect her to yell at me. Pack up her things and leave. Instead she took my hand and held me in her arms. Just held me. For once I wanted her to be around. I wanted her there. She understood.” The tears are rolling down his face “And even though I wasn’t at the point of loving her. For the first time I respected her. And over time, it grew from respect, to liking her and finally to a deep love. 36 years later, I’ve love her more then I ever have. Ever will”. He adds. I feel at tear bank up in my eye.

I consider saying something like. I’m sure she loved you to. But I didn’t know her. I can’t speak for her. Instead I come next to him. I hold his hand the way she did, and I hold him in my arms like she did. I don’t know if this was the right thing to do. But he allowed me to. And he seemed thankful. I let him cry.

“Hey guys you rea…..oh I’m sorry did I interrupt you”. Sienna says in the doorway of the cell. I let him go and wipe off the tear from his face.

“No its okay pie.”

Mr. Jacobs packs up the rest of his things.

“Ready to go?” the officer says. I turn to Mr. Jacobs. And look at his earnest blue eyes. “I’ll walk him out”. I say to the officer.

“No clea, don’t worry. I’m sure you to are very busy. Thank you clea for everything, you to sienna.” He says. Sienna nods.

“Stay strong”. I say to him. At that I leave.

“Hey guys how did it go”. Haymich says.

We get in the car me in the front sienna in the back.

“Guess?” I say teasingly.

“um…..he was released and we all lived happily ever after?”

My jaw drops.


“What? Seriously? I was right?”

“Yep that’s what happened”.

“What I thought you were only giving evidence and stuff today, there wasn’t supposed to verdict was there?”.

“Nope but that’s what happened.” Sienna chimes in. “we were given these”. She hands him the folder we were given by the guard. I have a flash back of that mans tattoo. I push back the thought and concentrate on the folder.

“So what happened in there C?, I mean isn’t that illegal? ”. sienna asks.

“I don’t know, I’ve never heard of anything like that happing before.” I say curiously.

“Oh well I mean, who cares we won right?” she says with a smile.

“yeah” I say uncertainly. While looking at the folder. I’m not so sure. I mean, as much as I hate admit it but Mr. Darwin was right. This verdict has nothing to do with my skill as lawyer. This wasn’t about the evidence, or the opion of the jury. This was stopped by someone way up in the legal food chain.

The rest of the car ride is spent examining the folder. It has alot of legal garbage. But the jist of it is, the case is solved don’t ask questions and everything will be fine. They obviously don’t know me.

We pull up to our apartment building.

“Well ladies. Congrats on your case. And ill see you later tonight.”

“Wait. What’s happing tonight?” I ask.

“Your celebration party.” He says while looking at me like I should know what he is talking about.

“Haven’t you been listening?” sienna chimes in. I look at them both cluelessly, then play along.

“Oh right see you then Haymich” I say with a smile. I get out of the car and sienna follows. Haymich drives away.

When we get in the apartment sienna says “Hey you want a coffee. Oh wait I forgot you were a young pot head who only drinks de-cafe”.

I stop in my tracks. And flip my bond hair around to her.

“What did you just say?” I ask curiously.

“Sorry. I meant to say you were a hippie. Sorry don’t know why I said that.”

“Huh”. I go to my room. She just said. “Young pot head”. Exactly the same thing that Mr. Jacobs parents called Skye. Oh well it’s probably just a coincidence.

I throw my things on the floor. And immediately change out of my horrible suit, and take a long floral dress and put that on instead. And put my hair up. I glace at the mirror. Wow, maybe she’s right, I am a hippie. I walk to my desk, and take my oil passels and a piece of art paper. I start drawing. I don’t know what I’m drawing I never do. I just draw. It usually ends up being what’s buried in the back of my head. This time it looks that that tattoo was at the back of my mind. I look at the piece of paper, it filled with intricate patterns and courlors. Its an exact replica of the tattoo of the planet. I hear a knock at the door.

“Hey can I come in?”. Sienna asks.

“Yeah sure”. I say.

She brings in a mug with the sweet aroma of coffee.

“gimm gimmi”. I say childish. I take the hot cup and wrap my fingers around it.

I bring it to my lips but resist it.

“decafe?” I ask

“Yep”. I smile ad take a sip.

“ I really don’t see what you have against real co…hey! What’s that?.” She says

“Oh its just a tattoo I saw on someone.”

“Huh. It looks familiar”. She says crinkling her nose.

“What? Where.”

“I don’t know. Just do.”

“How could you just-“

“Vanile!” She interrupts. “That’s what its called!”

“What? How do you, I mean how could you know that”.

“I-I don’t know.” She says “just do. Oh well. I’m going to go watch Gilmore girls. Hey do we have any junk around here?

“No why”.

“I don’t know I have a serious chocolate craving. HEY maybe I could get matt to bring some over?”

“ehhh” I say unenthused.

“Oh come on he’s not that bad”.

“No he just…creeps me out”. I say simulating crawling things with my hands.

“Yeah, yeah.” She says leaving the room.

“Shut the-“ SLAM

“No need.” I add

I look at the picture. I take my black oil pastel and sign Clea.M

At the top I write Vanile


I get dressed in a bright orange singlet, with a long wavy blue skirt. And of course floral heals. I put my hair up, and refresh my make-up. Then I head out.

Wow. Haymich want shy about inviting people. It looks like everyone I’ve ever known is here. I start searching around the crowd to find Hamich. When he speaks behind me. ”Hey everyone! Clea’s here”.

“CONGRATULATIONS”. They all yell.

“Oh thank you”. I say embarrassed. I feel my cheeks turn red.

“What’s wrong?” Haymich says.

“Oh nothing”.

“Al-right, well here”. He hands me a glass of champagne.

“Enjoy”. And he turns around to talk to everyone.

I spend the next hour making polite conversation to people I hardly know.

Lexi approaches me. Gosh I hate her. She used to be in health class with me when I was in high school. She would always spend hours talking to me about completely irrelevant subjects. While I was trying to I do my health work.

“Hey!” she says brightly. Here it comes.

“Hey ho-“ I start, unable to finish.

“So when Haymich told me that you won I was like whaaaaa. And then I was like mum, she won the case! And then I was like, should I go tonight or not. I mean she hasn’t seen me in ages. But then mum was like. Yeah you should it would be good to see her again. And I was like. Yeah. And the-“. He spent the next half an hour talking my ear off. Just like high school. I decide I’ve had quite enough at this point where she starts talking about how she lost her job.

“Hmm that’s very interesting.” I cut off. “Listen I have to excuse myself its great to see you again lexi.”

“Oh yeah i-“

“Bye”. I say and leave before another word.

Sure this may seem harsh but. Three years of health class has taught me that it’s the only way.

Finally once all the guests are gone Hamich slumps himself on the couch.

“ahhhh I am tired!”

“Good then get out.” I say sarcastically

“ha-ha”. He says.

I walk to my room and he follows.

“So what are you doing tomorrow?” he asks casually while limping to my bed.

“aww nothing, just doing a bit of housework. What about you?” I say pulling the picture of the planet out of my draw.

“I’m going to visit the grave yard. You know, tomorrow is the anniv-“

“I know”. I interrupt. I cant bear to hear him say it. But then end of the sentence would have been of your fathers death. Car crash. That’s how he died. On the 14th of October. Tomorrow. I cant visit the graveyard. Its…too hard. Even with the help of Haymich, my best friend from birth. Ever since my dads death my mother has been living in a mental asylum. I guess the pressure got to much and she just snapped. I lived with Haymich since I was about 13 and half, I lived with Haymich and his parents, then when I was 18 I moved I went to collage. Then two years I moved in with sienna. Haymich, my brother my friend. He’s always been there for me. Always.

“You know I can take you”. He says while giving me a back massage.

“No. you know I love you but I can’t”.

“I know. The offers there if you want it.” He says sweetly. Stand up and face him, look into his brown eyes. The very ones who have been looking after me since I was 13. “I know. Thank you”. He smiles and hugs me tightly. Although I don’t have any blood brothers a sisters. He is my brother.

He’s eye catches the drawing of the tattoo.

“Where did you get this?”

“No where. I drew it”. I say picking it up.

“You just drew it off the top of your head?”

“Well, a man had it as a tattoo on his neck and I drew it from memory why?” I say.

“The tattoo did it have the word Vanile on it?” he asks with deep concern.

“No, sienna knew its name”. He’s brow tightens and I feel my anxiety go up along with his.

“Was the man involved in the court case?” he asks. As if to read my mind.

“Yeah. Wait how did you know that? Do you know him.” I say.

Sienna bursts in. “do you guys need anything” she asks.

“No were fine”. I say “so how do you know it?”

He looks at me terrified.

“I have to go see ya C”. He hugs me abnormally long and then kiss’s me on the forehead and rushes out.

Okaaaay I say in my head.

“What was that about?” sienna says

“Who knows?” I reply.

“Well I’m off to bed, ill see ya later?” she skips to me sarcastically and kisses me on the cheek. Then skips away.

I turn back to my to my desk and notice Vanile is tuned around. And written on the back of the page is This is Haymich’s writing. He must have wrote it when he hugged me. But why so secretively? Why would he want to- wait sienna. But why would he want to hide it from pie? They bud heads once in a while. But they trust each other. Wait C, ask after. First, look up the website. I open the lid of my laptop, and wait for it to start up. Once it finally starts up I click on Google and type in the address. It immediately comes up with a black screen, then lights up with purple and orange colored words At the top is written in big bold orange words is PLANET VANILE IS REAL. I begin to realize that this is one of Haymich’s geek websites….great. He’s always talking about life on other planets. I can’t deny that there might be other life on planets. I mean, there are millions of galaxy out there, we can’t be alone. But I’m preoccupied with my own earth to be worried about any others. I take a quick scroll down.

We don’t know if they are aliens or just a different genetic race. But they are definitely not from earth. They look just like humans but are far from it. They all posses telepathic ability and all have another unique ability according to there DNA. You may very well be among them. A family member, a friend, a workmate, a schoolmate ect.

To identify the signs that someone is from Vanile. Please click here.


I click on here and it brings up an identical page but different information.

1: you feel uncomfortable around them, but cant identify the reason.

2: you feel as if they are a bad person but with no evidence.

3: you feel as if they are constantly watching you.

4:you feel as if they hurt your brain when they stare into your eyes.

5: when speaking to them you swear you have had the same conversion with them.

6: they know facts that there not likely to know, either about you or a situation.

If you can think of someone who check out all theses boxes. Be cautious.

Matt. Every one of these boxes he fills. What if he’s- no, no I’m being absurd, there’s no such thing as aliens “invading” our planet. I close the lid of the computer and I crawl into bed. Enough about aliens. And court cases, and death, and annoying people who talk to you about nonsense. Time to turn off brain.

Sleeps a funny thing, first your not tired and after about an hour of tossing and turning, you finally become sleepy. Then you need to pee. Or you have an overwhelming thirst. Once your up its another few hours before that waves picks you up and takes you to bliss. But not tonight. There is no tossing or turning, or thirst. just stress. My feet are nervously jumping up and down all night my legs carry me way to the ground so they can do a little pacing. I’m not sure if its because of my father, or because I cant stop thinking about that dam tattoo. I wish I had never seen it. Instead its lingering in the back of my mind. I decide at about four o’clock that I will silence any doubts in my head. I open the lid of my computer and I continue reading. After about two hours of reading I’ve learnt everything there is to know about Vanile. I hope this satisfies my head so it will allow me to sleep. But no, looks like its an all nighter for me. Well sorta already is its 6.15 and the sun is starting to rise. I go out to the bathroom and I splash warm water on my face. I hear the door burst open I hear the speedy yet quick footsteps of sienna.

“Look out!” she says while whizzing past me and throwing up in the toilet bowl. I run over to her and hold her hair while she wrenches forward. When she’s finished she sits next to the toilet bowl and I gently rub her back.

“Are you okay?” I ask.

“Yeah..i guess I just…have a bug or something.” She says with no eye contact. I know she lying.

“Pie, are you pregnant?”

She stares at the floor for a moment and then nods.


I rub the soft fabric into my fingers before I hand it to sienna. She puts the rob on then sits on the corner of the bed.

“Thanks”. I nod

“Are you going to keep it?”

“Yes, I can’t kill my baby.”

“It’s not a baby it’s a fetus”.

“It’s a baby clea, that’s the end.” This I the first time I’ve seen her firm and strong.

“Okay, but who’s the father?”

“Matt of course”.

“….right”. I knew this will end badly. I just knew it.

“Does he know?”

“Not yet. But I was going to tell him today”.

“You’re really going to keep it?”

“Yes clea.”

“But your not living together, you’re not even married!” I raise my voice.

“YES WE ARE.” I stop

“Your what?”

“Last year. We went on that holiday to Vegas. And we got married there.”

“Great you got hitched on a drunken rampage.” I decide.

“No. we were both perfectly sober.” I look at her in disbelief. A few moments pass before I say anything.

“And you didn’t tell me?” I say clearly sad.

“I’m sorry clea. I just know how much you hate matt. And I just wanted you to like him. Forgive me?”

I think about it for a few seconds. “Yeah pie I do.”

My phone lights up in my pocket and begins to vibrate. I open the lid and answer it. “Hello Clea Main, how can I help you”.

“You know you should really save me to your contacts”.

“I know you number Haymich why would I save you when I cold just dial you?”

“Whatever. Listen I’m coming to pick you up in half an hour.”

“To take me where?”

“Dress warm see you soon”

“WAIT! it better not be to my fath-“ BEEP BEEP


“What was that about” sienna says behind me.

“Oh nothing. Listen are you going to be okay? Cause Hamich was going to take me…somewhere.” I say oddly.

“Yeah ill be fine. Go have fun”. She says with a sweet smile.

I kiss her on the forehead and skip out the way she did last night. I hear her giggle as I shut her door. I can believe she is going to have a baby in nine months. I wonder how matt’s going to react. He’ll probably hit something.

I walk to my room, get dressed in a long flower skirt and a pink singlet. With a purple floral hat. I walk to my desk and I add a little more blue to Vanile. I hear the car horn honk and I go outside.

“Hey you ready?” Hamich asks?

“Maybe you gunner tell me where were going?”

“Maybe.” He smirks. “Just hop in.” he says

I look at him suspiciously and then get in.

“Put this on.” He hands me a black scarf.

“Thanks I’m warm enough”.

“I know but I was thinking over your eyes?” he giggles.

“You want me to blind fold….my self?”

“Yeah that would be great thanks.” He insists.

I reluctaly put it on

“Tighter” he grunts.

I tighten it up more. “Hope I’m not going to end up in some ditch with all my cloths stolen.” I say sarcastically. He doesn’t reply.. Which worries me.

It’s funny when you have no sight you have to rely on the other four senses to guide you. You notice every little bump in the road. You pay attention to ever smell coming for your rolled down window. You touch every piece of fabric you can find. You hear every noise. What I can tell you is on a very windy road, possibly underground or in a car park. We passed a forest, and a beach. That it’s taking about 2 hours to get there. Wherever there is. On the whole ride there Hamich spoke no words. This is weird. Even for him. Gravity inches me forward and I hear the hand break pull up, and I know we have arrived.

He takes the blind fold off. Everything is orange and blurry for a few minutes and my sight returns back to normal. Although it was an interesting experience I’m not keen on it happing again. When we step out of the car I notice there is no willow trees. I sigh in relief. I don’t remember much about my dads funeral but I do remember sitting under one of the many willow tress after the service.

Not crying. Just sitting there. It reminded me of dad. We used to go camping outside in all different kinds of parks and rainforest. Mum always used to go to a hotel room. But dad and I. We shared nature. I had responsibility there. It was fun. I made breakfast in the morning. Made my own fire. And went searching for wood. Even though these weren’t difficult tasks. To a 7 year old, it was like being all grown up.

“You know when you said put the blindfold on I figure I would see some sort o surprise party when I took it off…well this is one heck of a surprise party.”

I say quite clearly.

“This way.” He says quite seriously. Gesturing to the red door at the far end of the car park.

I look at him oddly. Then walk. Once we reach the door he stops me before I pull it open.

“Now when you go in you need to act naturally. I need you to introduce your self under a different name. And above all. Do NOT look ANYONE in the eye. Got it?”

“Okay what the hell is going on?” I ask finally.

“Got it?” he says louder.

“Okay. Okay. I got it.” I whine.

“Good. Open the door.”

I wrap my blue colored nail polished fingers around the cold steal. I pull the door in one swift motion. The lights flicker on.

“Oh my god.” I whisper.


“shh”. Haymich says in my ear. “I said natural.”

“Right yes.” I straighten up a bit and pull my cardigan down. What I facing is a very poorly lit room with a single table in the middle. It looks like a blackjack or poker table. It has 18 chairs around it. The entire room is made of concrete and is quite chilly. He walls are plastered with posters of Vanile. Along with that quotes like. “They walk among us” and “were not alone.”

The quotes true. Were not alone in this room. A young man approach us. About 25 wearing black thick glasses. A blue jumper with another set of black glass printed on the top. With simple black tracksuit pants. He looks at me up and down then quickly faces Hamich.

“Who the hell is this? You know we can’t bring newb-“

“Don’t worry Clark, we can trust her. Right?” Haymich looks at me expectantly.

“Right”. I say I hold out my hand to him “I’m C…riley.” I say remembering Haymich’s rule.

“Clark.” He says suspiciously. “And do you have a last name riley?” he tests. “Sydney. Riley Sydney. But most people call me Ri.” I finish.

“umm..hmm.” he mumbles walking away.

“What the hell is his problem?” I whisper to Hamich while standing on my tippie toes. He’s so tall.

“Oh Clarks just a bit weary of newcomers.” He says causally.

“So where are we?”

“Everyone please take your seats.” Clark says from the head of the table.

Everyone flocks to take a seat. All 19 of us. Which is a problem because there’s only 18 seats. When everyone’s sitting. I stand n the corner. I don’t want to be apart of this weird gathering. They don’t seem to take notice.

“Welcome everyone. Now first off as anyone had any success?” Clark says. Everyone looks around the room and shakes there head in disappointment.

I notice a small woman. Maybe about 17 staring at me. She has hazel eyes with curly amber hair. She’s wearing a collard tee-shirt with green army pants. She points straight at me. “Who’s that?” she says to no one in particular.

“This is my friend riley, Sydney.” Haymich says standing up and caressing my back, therefore pushing me forward in the little light generated from the lamp above the table. I try to move back but he’s too strong.

“You can call me ri.” I say a bit to casual.

“Why are you here?” This question has me stumped. I don’t even know what here is. “she’s interested in planet Vanile.” Haymich answers.

Planet Vanile? What? This what’s I’m here for this stupid tattoo? Is a beautiful Saturday outside and I’m here in this…..dungeon. When instead I could be… cleaning.

“Then why aren’t you sitting?” the hazel eyed girl says interrupting my thoughts.

“There’s no seats left.” I say truthfully.

“Sure there is. Dylan could you get Ri a seat?” she says.

“Yeah.” I strong voice says from the darkness. I hear a door open then shut. The hazel eyed girl walks to who ever it is in the darkness and en retrieves a seat.

She places it next to her. And then summons me with her hand. I feel reluctant to leave Hamich. But I do. I sit down in the seat and he conversion continues.

Clark says alot of things that I really wasn’t listing to. Mostly about new information gathered about “vanilens” (people from Vanile).

Once the meeting is over, the “geek squad” has a cup of tea together.

I approach Hamich. “Can we leave nerd dungeon please?” I ask.

“In a second. First I want you to meet someone.” He walks to the other corner of the room and brings back a man. With a black hoodie.

“Hello my names Dylan.” He takes his hoodie off.

My jaw drops. “You” I whisper.

“Riley. Don’t be so rude.” Hamich says. Nudging my back.

“Hi. I’m riley.” I say awkwardly. He looks at me strangely.

“Nice to meet you. What did you think of the meeting?”

“It all seems a but far fetched to me.” I blurt out. Warranting another nudge from Hamich. “Were going to go. It was nice see you again Dylan. Some time next week is it?” Hamish asks.

“Yes. Same time. It was nice meeting you c-riley.”

He clearly knows I’m lying about my name.

“Yes.” I sake his hand goodbye. very fast and walk out the red door. Hamich quickly follows.

As soon as were in the car I turn to Hamich.

“What the hell was that?”


“Why did you take me there. To him!”

“Whose him?” he says defensively.

“That Dylan guy. He’s the one who stopped the trail!”