Sunday, 30 December 2012

Fool's Paradise: Chapter3


Brianna and I pick up any stray luggages on the beach and drag them to a pile where Angus has decided will be our campsite. We were set with the task only because they concluded that we are brave enough to venture close to the plane. 

I'm stuffing spilled clothing back into a bag when I hear Brianna shriek from near the treeline. I abandon the soaked and sandy shirt in my hand and start running towards the sound. The short time I've talked to her has secured her as a friend, surprising me. Friends were not encouraged in our school, seeing as we were all going to be competing with each other in our departments. Although language and medical research  students would never even have a chance to be friends in the first place, nor talk about anything of similar interest. Although making friends on a stranded island isn't typical either. 

"Brianna!" I call as I reach the treeline. "Brianna, where are you?"

"Here, Maria!"

Her voice is close and I find her with the rest of the group. When I catch up to her she smiles. "It's that boy!" she exclaims excitedly. "Remember when he joined the group right after we had all woken up? He spooked me. Came right out of the trees and I thought I saw a ghost!" Her voice hushes to a whisper as she adds, "Who knows where or when he left, but you're not going to believe who he really is."

I don't mention that I don't know who anyone is, but indulge her anyways. "Who?"

"It's the Demon!"

"The what?" I ask, horrified. 

"The Demon! You know, the guy who, on the day of orientation, went on a rampage and beat up twelve students. He hasn't been on campus since, but he still aces all the exams for the biology department." Her eyes sparkle and I realize that she must really be into gossip and the know-how of the student body. 

I nod, as if I already knew. She seems satisfied, and continues her excited chatter. "Who would think that he'd be on the jet with us, I mean, I did hear that someone had to be personally escorted by the Dean's bodyguards to board, but he never comes to classes, much less a national conference."

The huddle in front of us parts slightly and I catch a glimpse of blonde hair. A shout cuts through the air and someone crashes through the group, knocking people out of his way. 

Angus follows after him, addressing him with another shout. "I just want to know where you went! I'm leader of this group so I have to know," he huffs with a malicious grin. "You can't just go off looking for snails. What are you, some lunatic, or something?"

The boy, still in the sand, turns away and, in turn, his eyes meet mine. I remember his frightening eyes and instinctively, I drop my gaze to avoid them. 

A murmur flows through the group as people start persecuting him as well, calling him a weirdo, a demon, and other unjustifiable names. Angus's influence is embedded in this group and now people are forcing their pent-up blame and frustration on the boy. Calls are spat at the boy and when I look up at Angus, the malice and amusement glittering in his expression scares me as it is mirrored on the faces of everyone who is calling names.

 The first pebble hits the sand beside him, having been thrown with poor aim. The boy scrambles to his feet, clutching whatever is in his hand protectively to his chest. More pebbles and some pieces of driftwood and glass are thrown after him. Angus laughs as he throws a broken bottleneck at the retreating back of the boy before he disappears into the jungle. 

The escalation of the anger is startling and I realize I've just witnessed a case of mob mentality. Angus's laughter is joined by others who congratulate each other for chasing out the Demon for what he deserves. When I turn to Brianna, I'm horrified by the smile on her lips as she congratulates a girl beside her with a high-five.


And now things will start to heat up! Let me know what you think (a couple words is all I ask).

Right now, I'm imagining a New Year's Countdown on top of a mountain, seated on toboggans, and watching the sky over the city, deciphering where the city ends and the stars begin.

Just a thought :P


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