After Math we had History, Amara and I sat next to each other while Tristan and Lyra had Economics. Before I opened my text books I noticed Amara trying to tie up her hair but every time she did it came loose.
“You can’t tie it. It’s too short” I whispered.
“But everyone is staring” she said in a low voice. “And Lyra was about to strangle me when she saw it”
I tried not to laugh. “Just leave it” I insisted “It looks great...trust me”
Amara obeyed and class began. We learned about the reign of King Markus, Stellaregno’s second ruler. We got our test scores today and I was glad to have at least gotten a B.
After History me and Amara had a few separate classes but we were both together in Math and me and Tristan had English together. Amara kept gushing about her quiz that she scored and A on.
“I could have been highest in the whole class but Lewis is always one step ahead of me” Amara cursed under her breath.
“It’s okay” Lyra comforted.
“You’ll get it next time” that was me.
“That’s what you always say” Amara said through gritted teeth.
“Have to say, Lewis may be a troublemaker but he has a big brain” Tristan added.
Lyra punched him lightly.
We ate in silence. There was tension between Lyra and Amara though, Lyra kept staring at Amara and somehow hoping her hair would grow back.
“Your hair looked amazing” Lyra blurted all of a sudden.
“It looked disgusting” Amara corrected.
After getting her hair dyed Amara cried for three days because the orange dye looked awful on her. Lyra thought it looked good but Amara wore a hat for six months until the dye washed out and her mother kept trimming the orange tips.
I didn’t pay attention in any of my classes and kept glancing at the clock to check the time.
“You have to explain something to me” I said to Amara as we walked out of class.
“Everything we learned today” I said.
“You weren’t listening” Amara had a disappointed look on her face.
“I didn’t have the energy to” I whined.
“None of us did” Lyra added.
“It’s only a few weeks and then we’re done with high school” Tristan sighed.
“It feels like graduation is so far away” I groaned.
“It’s right around the corner” Amara said “And in the mean time we have exams to keep us busy”
We all sighed at that and Amara grinned.
“I’m home” I announced as I slammed the door behind me.
My legs ached from the long walk. “Can I please take the car next time?”
“Of course not.” Granny replied, her eyes fixated on the television. What’s the point of my driver’s license if she won’t let me drive?
Granny was watching TV and her eyes seemed to be glued to the screen. “There’s food in the fridge,” she told.
“No thanks” I refused. I didn’t feel hungry, I already had enough lunch.
The only thing that came to my mind was about my Dad. He was at work in Hydrus, the capital of Stellaregno. He worked for the King as one of his advisors’. He used to live with us but he only comes to visit for a few days now. I think he got a job at the palace after Mom died. Granny had taken care of me ever since I was two years old. I don’t remember anything about my mother. I started to have nightmares after she died, that’s what Granny says.
I sat at my window and stargazed. I didn’t care that the Signs were going to burn my skin I just wanted to relax and this was the only way to do it.
“Annabelle!” Granny called.
I reluctantly left my room and rushed downstairs as Granny switched off the TV.
“What is it?” I asked.
“I just got a call from your father” Granny told.
“What did he say?” I asked in disbelief. Dad almost never calls, the last time we received a phone call from him was probably a month ago. I don’t blame him though. After all, he is in charge of making sure that an entire territory is fed and running smoothly.
“He said that he knows a good child psychologist for you,” she told. “And he’s coming home.”
I groaned but I was also surprised by the news. “I already told you.....” But Granny cut me off. She completely ignored me.
I had been to almost ten psychologists in the past eight or nine years. All of them had the same answer. And I don’t need to go to a doctor to tell me I’ve been traumatized my something that happened a lifetime ago.
“I have to get some groceries” Granny said. “Please clean up the house before I come home”
Granny grabbed her coat and walked out the front door. I heard the car starting and in seconds she was gone. I bit back a curse and locked the door, I started my chores in the living room.
I cleared all the books and newspapers, polished the coffee table and gathered the cushions that had been left around the floor. Granny always kept the kitchen clean so I didn’t have to worry about that. I went into Dad’s room and changed the bed sheets, I brought in some fresh towels and noticed the dust on the furniture so I polished it up.
I checked Dad’s closet, he had no clean clothes so I did some laundry and after that I was done. I washed my hands and treated myself to a snack while I tried to solve some math problems.I didn’t understand a thing, I was distracted. Still can’t believe Dad’s coming, he hasn’t visited in years. Virgus keeps him busy, whenever he comes he.
I heard the bell ring. It was Granny. I helped with the groceries and Granny cooked dinner.
“Looks like Dad isn’t going to be home for dinner” I said. I yawned and announced that I was going to sleep.
“But what about dinner?” Granny asked.
“I have homework to do” I lied.
I went to my room and instead of doing homework I stargazed. I lit up Virgo and breathed in the cool air. I thought of Dad, he hardly ever came home and he only invited me and Granny in winter holidays. He was in charge of Virgus, the territory which was built in honor of Virgo. Someday I would take my Dad’s place but that wasn’t anytime soon.
I don’t remember much of Virgus, even though that’s where I grew up. But Dad sent me and Granny to Hydrus after my mom died. I’ve haven’t visited a lot of territories, Dad sometimes took me and Granny with him on trips but I don’t remember much. I went to Geminus, Lyra’s cousin is ruling that territory. Capricornus was too far away but I went there multiple times, Tristan’s father was handling Capricornus until it was Tristan’s time to take over.
Amara lived in the Aries territory, or at least she used to.Her older brother was taking care of their territory and Amara moved here with her parents and her younger brother. Most of the descendants of the Twelve Major moved to Hydrus. There were two reasons for the descendants to move to Hydrus, it was either One: The eldest descendant was a girl and a female cannot be given a territory, instead her brother even if he is younger, uncle or one of her cousins take her place. But it isn’t necessary that only the girls move to Hydrus a lot of boys come to Hydrus too. That’s why we have reason two: Probably because some people want to go to school in the capital city and when they come of age they have to go back to their territory.
I was deeply lost in thoughts that I wasn’t aware of the fact that the Signs were aching and that all the stargazing had given me a headache. The Stars looked blurry. I was dizzy, I quickly stepped out of the balcony and warmed myself in my room. I took pills to help my headache and decided it was time to sleep.