“Quinn, are you done?” my mother asked as she entered my room.
She stared at my entire look for a second. She then smiled and held my arm when she was assured that I’m already prepared.
“Let’s go?” she added.
I just nodded and followed her outside. When we went downstairs, we saw Dad waiting for us while sitting on the sofa and drinking his coffee. We are all in the same white attire. The only difference is I’m the only one who’s wearing a shade to cover up my swollen eyes.
Today is Rika’s funeral. Her wake lasted just for a day because that’s what her parents wanted.
“We have to go now.” Dad stood up, “They are already waiting for us to come.”
They headed outside first while I’m still standing at where I stand and not moving even a bit. I looked around our house and locked up my sight in a picture frame that is placed above the piano. I walked near it and held it. Tears immediately dripped on my cheeks as I saw a photo of the three of us. Pracy, Rika, and I. We were so happy back then. We used to play piano together and sleep over each other’s house. That’s our bonding. But it hurts that only Pracy and I can do all the things again that the three of us always did before.
“Quinn Emerald, come on!” Mom shouted from the outside that made me back to my senses.
I put down the picture frame I’m holding and quickly went outside. I jumped on the car and Dad started driving. However, I’m glad that my family is complete today. I’m happy that even just for this day I can spend my time with them.
We finally arrived at Rika’s house after one and a half hours of riding due to the heavy traffic. When we came, they were preparing and soon to leave. All of my classmates are already there. We didn’t go to school today because we want to attend Rika’s funeral. Our Professor excused us and luckily, the Principal agreed.
“Go to your classmates,” Mom suddenly uttered beside me.
Maybe she noticed that I’m looking at my classmates. I gently shook my head.
“No need, Mom. I’m okay here.”
“It’s also okay to me and to your father if you’ll come with them. So go now, don’t worry about us.” she strained.
I can’t disobey her so I just nodded and went to my classmates. They greeted me as soon as I came closer but Pracy did not and she just stared at me silently.
Everyone started to walk when the car where Rika is lying down is already going and leading the way. It felt so heavy in my chest to escort my best friend to her final destination. The noise coming from the sad songs and loud cries of the people here are the only sound I can hear right at this moment. I cried silently on the side. Even Pracy next to me. I wanted to comfort her but I couldn’t because we’re still not on good terms. She’s still ignoring me.
The sobs and weeps of Rika’s parents became louder when we arrived at the cemetery wherein Rika will be buried. I gazed at Auntie Rafaela and Uncle Rick pitifully. I know it hurts so much for them to lose their one and only daughter. Because after this, they will be back to their lives where they will mind only their own self.
We sat down while the priest was preparing. I glanced at Pracy. Like me, her eyes are already swollen and her nose is reddish. No one could stop her in sobbing right now.
The ceremony of the priest started so we stood up. All the prayers, speech of the family and closest friends of Rika, and the last part where we need to throw a flower in her coffin. Rika’s relatives are the first one who threw their flowers. Then next is my classmates and my parents. After them, Pracy and I came closer to Rika’s coffin that is now being buried. I looked away as I threw the flower I have. It’s so hard. I really can’t accept that this will be the last.
When we sat back to our seats, Rika’s parents occupied the front. All of our attention was on them. Auntie Rafaela almost kneeled down in weakness because of non-stop crying while Uncle Rick was supporting her from behind with tears in his eyes. He couldn’t bear to not show it anymore.
The surroundings were filled with mourn when Rika was already buried. I looked up in the clouds above. Remembering all the memories I had with my best friend. I will forever treasure it. I’m very thankful that she became a part of my life. I took a deep breath and slowly let go of the balloon in my hands.
“Go to your room. Get some rest,” Mom commanded when we came home.
I nodded at her and hugged them both before I headed to my room. I feel so tired so I immediately laid down on my bed and fell asleep.
On the next day, I woke up earlier than my natural time of rising up. I also don’t know if I slept well because I was half-awake every hour. I wore my school uniform then went downstairs.
“You’re going to school already?” Dad asked as we saw each other in the dining area.
“Yes, Dad.” I answered.
“It’s too early.” he added, “Sit down and eat breakfast first. I’ll drive you to school.”
My head immediately raised when I heard him say that. It’s been ages since he last presented to drive and pick me up to school. I was only elementary back then. When I’m in high school, he became very busy to the point that he had no time for me. We haven’t bonded again as a father-and-daughter yet. So I was shocked right now because it seems like the breeze suddenly changed.
“Are you sure, Dad?” I asked, hesitating. “Don’t you have a meeting to attend today?”
“I have. But it will begin in the afternoon, sweetie.” he rest assured.
I ate with him. Mom woke up exactly on time as I finished my food. I arranged my things and bid my goodbye on her because Dad is already calling me.
“I’ll go ahead, Mom.” I said and kissed her on her cheeks.
“Take care, sweetie.” she uttered. “Seems like your father wants to gain back your closeness. He knew very well how he lacked time on you. I hope you didn’t resent him for that.”
I just nodded and gave her a short smile. She accompanied us two outside the house before we directly left. I immediately jumped off the car when we arrived at the school. I waved at Dad and waited for him to be out of my sight before I went inside.
As I entered the room, I caught my classmates playing and being noisy like they didn’t cry a lot yesterday. I just ignored them and sat on my seat. The classes started like nothing happened. Like no one died. Like we didn’t lose a classmate and a friend. I looked at Pracy when I noticed her gaze on me. She smiled. It’s a sign that we’re now okay. I stood up and hugged her.
I still don’t understand all the strange things that happened to me these past few days. First, when I suddenly got there in the cubicle. Second, when I saw through my own eyes the future of a specific person. But I won’t tell this to Pracy anymore because I know she will never believe me.
From now on, I’ll just hide everything I know and the peculiar things that ever happened to me.
“Put this to the office…” the President of our class commanded.
“I don’t want to. I felt lazy.” John refused, our classmate that did nothing in this class but to sleep. “Carry it, Kori.”
“And you really ordered me to do it? You know I have so much malfeasance to the Principal. She’ll just strike me in anger with her fiery eyes.” Kori chuckled.
I immediately came closer to them when I heard what they were talking about. They noticed me.
“Where will that be taken?” I asked the President and pointed out the papers she’s holding.
“In the Principal’s office.” she answered, “All of our project is inside this folder so we badly need to pass it today.”
“I can do it.” I presented, “I’ll take it to the office of the Principal.”
“Oh, Quinn already volunteered.” John whistled.
“Is it okay to you, Quinn? This is kinda heavy.” the President hesitated.
I smiled, “I’m used to carrying heavy things. Don’t worry.”
I took the papers from her. It’s really weighty. But since I told them that I’m the one who would take it in the Principal’s office so I just granted it. I was about to leave the room when something came up on my mind. I faced the President again.
“By any chance, is the Principal there?” I asked curiously.
“I think she’s not in her office right now.”
I just nodded then left the room. I headed to the Principal’s office quickly. I stopped when I came there and knocked on the door.
I already knocked thrice but still no one is answering me. I slowly opened the door and looked around. I entered when I noticed that the Principal wasn’t there.
I put the papers down on her desk. It was not in my plan to stay here a bit longer but my attention was nailed on the slightly opened little cabinet that I saw on the boundary of her office. My curiosity attacked so I couldn’t do anything but to walk near it and see what’s inside. An old notebook was in there. I took it carefully.
“Étudiants aux pouvoirs magiques…” I uttered as I read what’s written on the first page of that notebook.
My eyebrow arched. I can’t understand what it means. The language is variant.
“What is this?” I softly mumbled to myself.
I turned it to another page. I saw five names written on it. I don’t know who they are but my eyes stopped when I looked at the familiar name with a big check mark on its side. That name was second to the last.
✓ Varri Cuevas.
I was about to read the last name written on it when I heard someone opening the door. Nervousness rose up in my chest so I placed back the notebook inside the cabinet and closed it immediately. I was stunned when the door suddenly opened.
“What are you doing here?”