On a lovely Saturday afternoon, a blonde teenage girl with the name of Faith moves about her room looking for her phone and keys. She lifts some finished, weekend algebra homework from her usually organised desk to see the missing items.
Grabbing them, she drops the papers and thinks of going to the kitchen to ask her mum if she can go to the mall. She walks down the stairs and starts her journey to the kitchen.
“Faith!” Her younger sister, Lily, calls.
“Look what I made!” She holds up a drawing of what looks like their house’s front garden. The red and white roses in bloom fits together perfectly with the green background. Faith smiles and ruffles her sister’s golden hair.
“It looks amazing. I love it and I’m sure mum will too.” Faith signs with her hands. The little girl giggles and zooms off to show her mother the picture.
Faith sighs, remembering the days when she didn’t worry as much for the small girl. Lily was in an ‘accident’ last year and lost her ability to hear. This makes Faith feel horrible because there wasn’t anything she could do stop it. She clenches and unclenches her fists and a huff escapes her mouth.
Their idiot of a father was the cause. Let’s just say that alcohol has been banned from the house ever since. The teenage girl shakes her head, forcing the thoughts of the former year from her focus.
She completes her walk to the kitchen to see her sister and mum pointing at different parts of the drawing.
“Faith said that it’s amazing!” Lily says excitedly. Mum smiles and looks over at Faith, then back at the younger girl.
“That was very nice of her.” Their mother signs. Lily nods, happy from Faith’s encouragement to her sister. She skips out of the kitchen, leaving her mother with the picture.
“Is there something you need?” Mum asks, taping the drawing to the fridge. Faith rolls back and forth on her heels, thinking of a way to go about asking. Since the incident with Lily, their mother has been very protective.
“Well. I was wondering if I could go to the new tea shop at the mall.” Faith says this quickly, nervous about her mother’s reaction. As expected, she freezes for moment then turns to face Faith, a worried look in her eyes. The teenage girl clutches her phone and keys, hoping for a positive answer. She looks at her daughter for a moment, then nods reluctantly. Faith jumps up and down inside. She is very excited to see the new shop.
“How long are you going to be gone?” Her mother inquires. Faith has an answer immediately.
“Just a couple hours.” Her mum nods and shoos her out of the kitchen.
Faith almost runs outside to her mother’s car. She opens the car door, puts her seatbelt on, and starts the car. Backing out of the driveway, Faith begins driving to the mall.
Arriving at the mall ten minutes later, the teenage girl parks the car and enters the mall. People walk visit the many shops around her as she looks on the mall’s map for “Pete’s Tea”. Faith finds it on the second floor and walks to the stairs. As she walks up the stairs, she sees two girls that go to her school talking about someone. The girl with brown hair, Ashley, speaks first.
“The girls at school are, like, so weird. They wear jeans with holes and they aren’t even fashionable.” Ashley flips her hair over her shoulder and seems to be waiting for her red-headed friend, Claire, to agree. Claire nods her head in approve of her friend’s announcement.
Leaning closer to her friend, Ashley whispers loudly, probably knowing that Faith can hear her.
“The weirdest is definitely Faith Woods. Her hair is probably dyed, just to draw attention.” This statement didn’t make any sense to Faith, who did not care what her classmates thought of her.
With a shrug, she is at the top of the stairs and immediately takes a right. She walks a few paces and stands in front of the tea shop. She grabs the door handle and with her hand and pulls it open.
Faith is overwhelmed by the aromas of the beloved refreshment and steps into the shop. She looks around and sees her favourite, Earl Grey Tea. Entranced by the scent, she walks over to it and picks up a few boxes of it.
The blonde teenager looks around for a bit longer, then goes to the counter. A brown-haired boy about her age smiles at her.
“Bonjour and welcome to Pete’s Tea. I am not Pete. I’m Ben, in case you don’t remember.” Ben says. She remembers, quite clearly in fact. Faith’s cheeks flush for a moment as she fights a giggle. She sets her purchases on the counter and gets her wallet from her pocket.
“It’s nice to see you again” She Ben, who places her boxes in a bag. He nods.
“Your total is €2.58.” Ben hands her the bag and Faith pays him the correct amount.
“Merci et au revoir.” She says. He winks at her. She blushes and makes her way to the exit of the shop.
“Tea you later!” Ben shouts, waving his arms. Faith turns around to see his co-worker smack him.
She waves back at him, a huge grin on her face the whole time.
As Faith leaves the mall, she realises that she hasn’t smiled this much since before Lily’s incident.
When she pulls into the driveway, she sits the car for moment to look through her bag. Faith smiles, once again, at a message Ben left her.
‘See you in class, chemistry partner.’
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