It was a small school with not many children. They were all bound by something primitive, but no one could explain what it was. The lonely topper met a companion. The misunderstood prefect found an agreeable friend. Even the ruthless sports captain glimpsed into the long repressed tenderness within.
Then, on the first day of the new session, she enrolled. Curiously though, there wasn't a tremor of excitement in the air. Her addition was as inconspicuous as a drop of water falling into sand. The week passed by rather dully.
It was only after she had memorized the labyrinthine corridors and location of classes that she became more aware of her living surroundings- her classmates. Why were they all in pairs? Not alone, not in groups of three or more, but in pairs. She looked to her left and saw two girls digging into a small bowl of fruit. A few swift steps would have led her to them but barely had she taken the first one when the bell rang.
Her next attempt was later that day. The class was standing beside the basketball court, waiting to be sorted into teams by the coach. He called out a boy's name, who stepped out with a girl by his side. They both walked to the right of the court. A pair of boys walked to the left. With the calling of every name came forward not one child, but two. And so the teams were made. She went unnoticed.
Her back was wet with cold sweat and something fell very rapidly within her. It felt like she was thrown off a cliff into a deep abyss. She mustered the strength to lightly touch her coach's shoulder. As he turned and she opened her mouth to speak, something large hit her left ear, and everything merged together in a deafening silence.
There was darkness everywhere when she opened her eyes. Someone has turned off the lights. She heard nothing either. Was she safe at home now, resting till she felt better? Her lips moved to call out to her mother, but not a sound came out. Her back responded to her desire of getting up, but she still felt like she was lying down. Her arms flailed aimlessly on the side. Every step she took planted her right back where she was. Hot tears brimmed over until her head ached, and as she closed her eyes to soothe the pain, she saw a vivid flash of green. Her eyes flung open and she was surrounded by darkness once more. She let her lids drop again, and this time she heard the sound of a fresh chalk writing across a board.
Every moment awake was inky black. Every moment shut away was unnaturally vivid, and yet she chose to lie there in that nucleus of nothingness, eyelids forced open, except when they fell shut on their own accord, too tired to bear the weight.