The Parting Of The Ways

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A Night Off

Athene was lying on top of her bed studying as always. She had her French exam tomorrow morning. She had already taken her History, Classical Civilisations and English Literature A-Levels, she only had her French and Latin left now.

She was trying to practise her translation for a bit and had decided to skip tea as she wanted to study.

“Hey Athens!” said Charlie.

“What do you want Charlie?” she mumbled flicking through a dictionary.

“Come on Athy,” begged Julie, “just come and get some tea.”

“No thanks,” she shrugged.

“Oh, come on, there are jam tarts.”

“It’s your birthday,” sighed Charlie, “just put the books away for five minutes.”

Athene still looked unconvinced, she had been trying to forget about her birthday this year, she and Anthony were going to celebrate it on Saturday once they’d taken all their exams.

“Oh alright,” sighed Athene putting down her dictionary, “but just for half an hour.”

Charlie and Julie took a hand each and half pulled Athene down to the dining room where the rest of the house was already waiting for tea.

“Where are these jam tarts then?” asked Athene flopping down at the table.

“Oh, there are no jam tarts,” shrugged Charlie, “but there is cake.”

At this point, Lizzie and Lucy with help from some of the others carried in a huge cake with light pink icing and sugar flowers.

“For she’s a jolly good fellow! For she’s a jolly good fellow! For she’s a jolly good fellow! That nobody can deny!”

Athene laughed as she blew out the eighteen candles. Anthony was beaming at her as he kissed her.

“Did you plan all this?” asked Athene as he helped her cut the cake.

“You bet I did,” said Anthony.

“But I thought we were postponing my birthday,” asked Athene.

“I’d never postpone your birthday,” said Anthony putting his arm around her, “you’re my girlfriend, you mean too much for me.”

“But what about our exams?”

“You guys know it all back to front,” shrugged Harry as they ate their cake.

“Besides, Anthony’s going to help you with your French after presents,” Julie explained.

“Hey maybe he’ll help you with you Oral,” said Mark winking suggestively.

“Don’t be so horrible,” laughed Athene.

After the cake, they all headed back up to the girl’s dorm to unwrap Athene’s presents.

Her Uncle Davy had given her a new leather-bound diary and had promised that they were going to go on holiday to Wales for a whole month over the Summer holidays.

She had also been given a box of presents from the Pennington’s. The Visages had given her some French chocolates, and she had gotten drawings from Niki and Michael.

Even Celia had sent her a woman’s handbook, which apparently had been what had made her and Simon’s marriage so successful.

Athene doubted that this book was the reason why Simon and Celia’s marriage was so successful, but she wasn’t going to argue with her.

Izzy had even sent Athene some material so that she could have some new clothes when she started at Oxford in a few months.

Anthony had gotten Athene her usual photograph album, labelled St. Christopher’s Upper Sixth.

He’d also given her something else as well. At the bottom of the pile of presents was a small box wrapped with a red ribbon.

Athene carefully unwrapped the box and found a silver heart-shaped locket with Roses engraved on the front.

“Oh Anthony, it’s beautiful,” she exclaimed.

“You haven’t opened it yet,” laughed Anthony.

She opened the locket and found a photograph of her parents, one on each half of the locket.

“I know how much your parents mean to you Athy,” said Anthony as he did up the necklace around her neck.

“And I know how well you’ve fit into our family, but you should never forget your family.”

“I love you, Anthony,” said Athene hugging him.

Athene and Anthony were soon making out on Athene’s bed.

“I think we’re going to take this as our cue to leave,” said Mark getting up to leave with Harry, Charlie and Julie.

“Don’t do anything I wouldn’t,” said Charlie.

“There’s not a lot of things you wouldn’t do Charlie,” chuckled Harry.

“So now we’ve practised that kind of oral,” said Anthony, “do we want to practise the French?”

“Sounds like a plan,” said Athene getting her grammar textbook out and Anthony flicked it open to the right chapter.

He was just testing her on the different types of past tense when Harry knocked on their door.

“You two decent?” he called.

“When aren’t we?” called Anthony.

“Fair enough,” muttered Harry opening the door.

“There’s a phone call for you both downstairs, we can't find Mark.”

“He’s probably off somewhere with Johnnie and Julie,” shrugged Anthony as they went to go and take the phone call.

“There’s only bad thing about having our own rooms,” groaned Athene.

“They’re up five flights of stairs,” laughed Athene and Anthony.

They finally got down to the ground floor where the telephone was kept.

“Hello?” asked Anthony down the receiver.

“Hi, Tony?” called Nick.

“It’s Nick.”

“Is everything all right?” asked Anthony.

“How’s Izzy?” asked Athene who was sharing the receiver with him.

“Everyone’s fine, we’re all fine,” said Nick.

“We’ve got news, Izzy has had her babies.”

“What?” asked Athene.

“She’s given birth?” said Anthony.

“This morning.”

“Yeah,” beamed Nick, “we’ve got a little girl and a little boy.”

“We’ve called them Charlotte and Brian.”

“You’re named them after Mum and Dad?” asked Anthony.

“They’ve got the same birthday as me?” laughed Athene.

“Yes,” said Nick, “and yes.”

“Tell Marky for me will you?”

“Yeah sure,” said Anthony, “and congratulations Dad!”

“Thanks, Tony,” chuckled Nick.

“Hey Mark!” said Athene as Mark came walking back into the building.

“Izzy’s given birth, a girl and boy, Charlotte and Brian.”

“Hey I’m an Uncle!” exclaimed Mark.

“You were already an Uncle idiot,” said Anthony shaking his head.

'Anthony,' muttered Athene pulling at the end of her plait.

'As it's my birthday, can we go try something?'

'What?' asked Anthony.

'Do you think the library might be empty?' she whispered.

'Let's go find out,' smirked Anthony.

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