Chapter 26 – Visitors
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‘Dad’ woke me up early today. Don’t tell me we’re going back to that place from yesterday? Once was enough.

Not that I can tell that to them, or that they would listen. This time ‘dad’ is alone, ‘mom’ seems to be out.

We’re going into the same thing as yesterday. Now that it’s not that new anymore I can focus on what happens outside of it.

It actually is way faster than a carriage, those buildings just pass by within a second. But it doesn’t use horses or anything else, so how does it move forward? Is it magic? That has to be the only explanation.

We arrive once again. The building is close to empty now, not like before. I don’t see any kids around, just adults.

‘Dad’ drops me at the same room I was in yesterday, then he leaves the room. “Honey, stay here, daddy will be back soon.”

I don’t care if you come back or not. Let’s see what we can find in this room, no one else is around so I can do whatever I want.

There’s a lot of toys around, or I assume that it’s toys. All of them seem to use bright colours, is this place rich? Since only merchants or nobles used colours, the rest just wasn’t rich enough to buy it.

Anyway, l don’t know how any of it works. I grab some weird plank that has little planks that are coloured on it. There’s something on those little planks but I can’t read it.

The big plank has two sticks on it, what’s that for? I put it on my table to further inspect it. It makes a weird noise, but what made the noise?

I tap on one of the little planks and it makes a noise, it sounds like the previous one but a bit higher.

Am I supposed to tap the little planks with the sticks? Maybe that’s why they added it.

I guess it can’t hurt to try.

Okay so the bigger the little plank is the heavier the tone is. It sounds really nice, I haven’t heard anything like this before. I wonder how they got the sound in there, hitting any other plank won’t create this specific sound.

“Honey, come say bye.” ‘Dad’ comes in to get me to talk, once again.

Back to the weird plank, if you hit multiple at the same time or within a short time it sounds amazing. Almost like it’s made to fit with each other.

Let’s do something else now, like drawing. I pick up some paper and head back to the table. Maybe I can try to draw faces this time.

I’ll start with Evan, since I saw him yesterday. So he has brown curly hair, brown eyes and a slightly darker skin. Should be easy enough.

A little while later I realised faces aren’t easy at all. Make the eyes too big and it looks odd, too small and you have some creepy face. And how do you even draw eyes? Or depth that is, everything is just on one layer. Ugh, I give up for now.

I look around and see the same kids as yesterday, sitting in a circle. They seem to ignore me, guess they learned from yesterday.

“Now then children, how many planets are there in the Flame Star System?” The same woman as before comes in with her fake happiness.

“Six!” The kids shout at the same time.

“Great, and what are their names?”

The kids happily show off their knowledge. “Ealia, Aliv, Inzoth, Ouvis, Thalia and Odilles!”

“And who named the planets?” The woman smiles, asking the basic questions.

“The Collilon Dynasty!”

“Indeed, the Collilon Dynasty were the first people to figure out we’re living on a globe that circles around a star, which they named Kena. Their dynasty was full of stargazers, people who dreamed bigger than all the others. So children, dream big and you’ll will manage to do great things.” The woman claps.

Is this a motivational speech? Dreams won’t always come true, unless you work hard for it. And even then, life can decide to ruin your dreams in just a snap. It’s not just dream big and you will fulfill all those dreams right away.

I don’t even have something I want to reach in the future, if I can even reach that far.

“So kids, what are your dreams?” The woman asks.

“I want to be an astronaut! Flying in spaceships and reaching new planets!” A random kid shouts.

“I want to be a policeman! Like a superhero!” Another kid follows.

“I want to be a pilot!” More kids join in.

“I want to be an artist! To make people happy with my drawings!” Evan shouts. That’s a job? Drawing for other people? How odd.

“I want to be a comedian! So I can bring a smile to everyone!” A kid decides.

After all the kids had their turn to shout the woman continued. “All of you have great dreams, and the first step towards them is right here! Work hard and your dreams will be within your reach.”

I still don’t think she gets how life works. Oh well, I can’t teach her or anything.

“Break time, I have some great news afterwards!” The woman claps in her hands again. What’s with all the clapping? What’s the point?

I continue with drawing, trying to find out the best way to draw a face. Who cares about break time, it’s not like this whole place isn’t a constant break.

Something is placed on the corner of my table, apparently Evan gave me a cookie. I guess this works, I don’t have to grab one from the woman now. I nibble on my cookie, this has a way better taste as the cookies I had before. Even this is magic, how do they do all that?

The woman opens the door to the fenced area and all the kids jump out. Not me obviously, I’m still nibbling on my cookie. I might head out later, see what’s out there.

The woman glances annoyed at me. She should go out and leave me, that makes it easier for the both of us. I focus on my cookie and she leaves with a shaking head.

Oh, now my cookie is gone. Time to go outside I guess. I hop out the door and see a big fenced area, like expected.

Most of the ground seems to be stone, but some parts are grass or even things that look like sticks. Seems painful to me, but I’m not the one doing idiotic stuff and running around.

There’s multiple adults standing near each other, and one is walking around the field like a guard. A lot of kids seem unknown to me, guess every room has a break now.

On the right side of the area there seems to be another fenced off place. The kids playing there are way taller than us, so they split the ages?

I head towards that fence, to see what they’re doing there. They seem to be kicking a black and white ball towards who knows where.

When it crosses a certain line half the kids cheer and the rest looks down. Apparently the line is where the ball needs to go, and the other kids don’t want it there.

Someone pushes me and expected me to fall with it. I’m still stronger than all of these kids, what can they do to me?

“What are you doing weirdo.” Oh now he speaks, how nice of him.

I plan on walking away, but the guy tries to push me again. Can I push him back? I’m thinking that has a big chance of punishment... I shiver with the thought.

Another voice joins in. “Hey kid, what do you think you’re doing.” The voice belongs to a boy on the other side of the fence. Next to him stands a girl around the same age as him, which seems to be around seven.

“Don’t you see how weird she is?” The kid points at me. Seeing the kid isn’t bothering me anymore I lose interest in it. Ooh a flower, I kneel down next to it. It’s a small white flower growing between the stones. It must have been hard for a little flower to grow here.

Vince would like this, thinking about him makes me smile. Anyway, let’s head inside. The outside seems boring.

I’m surprised to find Evan inside, drawing. Guess he also thought it was boring outside. This is my chance to draw him, since I can see the details now.

With my paper and pencil ready I sit down. Let’s do this!

“Break time is over!” The woman announces. “Now, the great news! Is everyone ready?”

“Yes, teacher!” All the kids shout. Still not including me.

“We’re having visitors! Kids from high school will come to read you stories, isn’t that great!” The woman says. Somehow she always seems excited, but I don’t believe it a single bit.

After finishing her announcement she opens the door to the even bigger room. A bunch of tall people walk in, I think it’s the same amount of kids that we have here. I’m not sure how all of them fit in, but they do.

Their ages vary, some of them are really tall and look like adults while the others look like kids.

“Now choose one of them and head to the hall.” With that the woman sits down and starts reading something. I guess she’s happy with the break.

Evan happily jumps up, just like the other kids. There goes my chance of drawing him. I managed to draw a terrible outline, nothing else yet.

I lay my head on my table, maybe I can take a nap to skip time. With most of the kids gone it’s quiet now, perfect for a nap.

A voice disturbs my peace. “Hey.”

I put in effort to get my head up and look at a girl from the visitors. She has red, firelike, hair with brown eyes. With hair like that she definitely stands out.

After staring at her I lay my head down on the table. No one is disturbing my nap, just ignore everyone.

I hear a sigh behind me, I guess it’s working.

My chair is pulled back, is napping so bad? She steps in between me and the table, before I can even reach it.

She squats down to reach my eye level probably. “I’m Sophie, what’s your name?”

What now? She has me cornered, I can’t lay down on the table anymore.

Maybe I should stare at her, until she leaves. It might give her the hint she needs.

So I stare, and she stares back. I won’t lose this staring competition.

Now that I’m awkwardly studying her face in a competition, I’ve noticed she has slight freckles. It’s hard to spot though, and I guess in the wrong light it’s invisible.

She just seems to stare at my eyes, so she should have seen me studying her face. I hope that makes her awkward enough. But seeing how confident she stares, I don’t think she cares.

I want to look away, I can’t win this fight. But that would mean she won, I can’t let that happen.

“Interesting name. Never heard of anyone else with that name.” She shakes her head. I won, also did she just make fun of me?

It doesn’t matter, she just needs to leave.

She reaches out to me. Why? I don’t have a single clue.

Why is she holding me, this makes no sense. What is she trying to reach by holding me at both sides?

Oh, I’m flying. That’s cheating! Lifting me off my chair like that, she just uses my size against me!

She carries me like parents do with their children, and I know that because mine tried that a lot of times. I wonder if she has younger siblings.

Also, unlike with my ‘parents’, she doesn’t make me feel disgusted or anything. Just like Evan, and that kid that pushed me. I wonder if it’s the age that matters.

Introducing new people everywhere cause why not.

This chapter was quite fun to write, but next chapter will be even better.

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