book and library image Temporarily removed

– 16:30hrs. Hearthstone Academy's Library.

“Ly, I will be in the library at our usual table, meet me there as soon as you read this, the sooner the better.”

Amélie groaned in exasperation from having to rush to the library due to the timing when she had received the letter. She had pulled an all-nighter to completely finish the mountain of work that she had neglected by her constant analysis of the things that were going on, enough to disregard any odd behaviour from her companions alas not enough to be oblivious.

As she entered the library that evening, she swiftly inspected the tables and rows until she found who she wanted.

A slouched silhouette towards the end of the library, blonde her tangled on her left hand and gaze completely lost, – Gretchen was so into her mind that she had not even noticed the odd looks that she had been receiving.

Rather than strolling towards her immediately, Amélie decided to pretend as though she had some work to do with her and as such, she walked towards the queue in front of Mrs Camari’s desk, allowing her mind to daydream slightly until she heard what her response was to the black-haired girl in front of her.

“It is imperative for a research ma’am.” Had said the stranger.

“If it is in the restricted section I can’t help you unless you bring me an authorisation from your lecturer dear.” Replied the headmistress’ sweet sister.

The girl’s posture was tense and stiff, perking the brunette’s curiosity to broaden, knowing just by her body language that whatever she needed was sure to be of extreme relevance for her, even if she doubted the alibi that had been given.

“Fine,” the girl sighed in resignation, “would you help me find this book then?” she said providing the librarian with a ripped piece of paper.

“That I can do,” the woman smiled before looking towards the blank-faced teenager behind the other, “and you dear?”

“The Hawthorne Effect Research if possible please,” the Spaniard swiftly answered, acting as though she had just arrived and had not been listening to their conversation.

Mrs. Camari nodded and proceeded to walk somewhere else to grab a journal of hers where they supposed was the information of the place where everything was stored.

“Do we have a psychology class?” the girl suddenly asked the brunette, albeit seemingly calm, Amélie read the faint anxiety in her grey-blue eyes, knowing well that the stranger meant to discover whether she had listened to the exchange or not. As such, she decided to grant her some relief and shoot her most polite smile.

“Yes though I am still not enrolled in it,” She said laughing slightly, “I am just an awfully curious person who happens to have a kin for psychology.”

The girl nodded to the apparent confession but before she could say something else, Mrs. Camari was back with two small cards that contained the location of the requested materials.

“Mrs. Winters here is yours,” the woman said handing the respective card to the girl to the left, “Mrs. Suárez.” The girl to the right smiled and carefully grabbed the card from her hand.

“Thanks,” the both of them said but before Amélie could say anything else, Juliette had already left from her side, causing her to shrug and then walk towards her original destination.

Minutes later the brunette was sitting in front of Gretchen, tapping her book to attract her attention, eventually getting it.

“The Hawthorne Effect?” the blonde scoffed when she took notice of the book that her companion brought with her, “Ly you do know that that research is controversial because it is deemed faulty?”

“I know,” she agreed.

“Then why do you bother?” she asked confused, her blue eyes scanning for a sign of a joke from the spaniard.

“Because I want to know why it was deemed faulty G,” she replied, “I find it important to realise what they did wrong and how it still developed a managerial concept that people are still studying today.”

Gretchen nodded, fully comprehending her rationale behind the interest for such a flawed research.

“Anyways, why did you call me here?” the brunette asked, noticing straight away how she tensed and averted her sight from her while biting her lip, “What is wrong?”

“We cannot talk here,” she mumbled. “Follow me.”

Confused as to why she had asked to meet at the library just for them to leave, Amélie stood up and went to ask for a loan for her book while her companion packed and followed her.

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A while later they sat down in a pavilion that was located in a small hill somewhat far from the centre of Catachan.

“I am sorry for making you workout today,” she joked knowing well that her companion was grateful to her for showing her the spot.

Since it was high, you could see the village from up here with all its splendour. People coming out of shops, students walking towards their houses, the castle that was their Academy, everything.

“Speak,” she demanded, scanning her thoroughly with her honey eyes, knowing that she hated how she always seemed able to tear away any information from her.

Amélie watched as her blue eyes shifted from incredulous to anxious and even scared, and after she managed to breathe a shaky breath she looked at her straight into the eyes and muttered something that she could not fully comprehend.

“Clearer Gretchen,” the dancer whispered getting closer to her and holding her hand, “I cannot understand you if you don’t speak clearly.”

The blonde glanced at their joined hands and no less than a second later she had shoved the brunette into her arms the latter feeling her begin to cry.

“Do you remember my ex-girlfriend?” she whispered in the crease of her neck.

Stunned because of her actions, her companion forced herself to hug her back and whispered back a “yes.”

“She tried to move on but…” she choked, “she could not and decided that it was better to speak clearly with her parents…”

Already sensing where she was trying to go, Amélie brought her closer to herself as she carefully made her way to the ground with the other, and the instance that her back touched the cold concrete, she made sure that the other would be to her right side, not once turning around to look at her, but making sure to caress the palm of her companion’s left hand as it was something that she reckoned her brother doing to her and knew that it was a good way to calm down.

“Her father grew mad,” she whimpered, “he sent her to an hospital where she stays in a coma.”

Now it was her turn to tense up and open her eyes in disbelief, but she still did not look at her.

“The worst part is that her mother did nothing about it,” she mumbled connecting her eyes with mine, “her best friend was the one to tell me, her mother would not allow anyone to know but he thought I deserved to.”

She knew that she had have to be frowning because Gretchen pouted and cried harder when she said nothing, so sighing Amélie brought her back to her nape until she felt that the blonde had calmed down enough for them to leave.

So as they walked through the plaza the brunette offered her to eat something which she replied with a faint smile asking her instead to go eat at her place.

“I don’t want to be alone with my thoughts,” she had excused herself the instance she saw the spaniard hesitate leaving her without any more of a choice. “Thank you, I did not know whom to speak to.”

“Since when had you known?” She softly asked as we made themselves to her house. “And your mates won’t complain if I go there without notice?”

“They usually come back late on Fridays,” she replied, “and I had known about it for a week.”

“Are you going to tell El and Jane?” she asked the instance that they stopped at her porsche.

“Eventually,” she sighed, “my intention was never to worry anyone and you all deserved to know why I was acting odd and harsh so suddenly.”

Her last sentence brought back the remembrance of her anxiety attacks, the luminescent eyes that still haunted me, Louis’ meeting with that weird man and the day that she almost collapsed when she thought that she had seen him but never provided any explanation.

She surely trusted them and her, and she knew for a fact that the other two did as well, but then she wondered...

If that is the case then why couldn’t she trust them?

She thought that it may be because she was so scared of judgements that she decided to act blissful just as her past self used to be, even if that was not the truth at the moment and had keep the façade of being fine.

Her eyes drifted towards Gretchen’s apparent carefree demeanour in the kitchen, listening intently to her steps as she took out the cutlery and prepping the ingredients for their dinner.

“Oh and Ly? I am so sorry that came out the way it did, it wasn’t my intention and I meant no harm back there in your haven. I was just stressed,” she had excused herself after a while earning a shrug from the brunette because she suddenly felt drained of energy.

Image by claudette

She had been overworking herself to try and keep herself steady, such had led to an agreement with Mr Samuel that would turn out to be beneficial to the both of them: She would assist him with the instrument’s care and he would seek for a place where she could dance to her heart’s content until the dance club’s audition period began.

“Mrs. Suárez, as soon as you are done cleaning those double basses, please tune them up,” ordered Mr. Samuel from the other side of the music studio they were in as he tuned a piano, “if you need a reference warn me beforehand so we can work something out.”

The brunette nodded and proceeded to continue to absentmindedly polish the bass that she was working on.

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