"I will kill him this time!" Alice bellowed, her chest ballooning and shrinking down like maniac pumping machine pumping anger into his belly. She let out a beast-like howl into the air. Some of the students in the hall glanced sideways at her and nudged their friends' waist. But Alice didn't care. Even the fiercest, mightiest wind would not have been able to smite her cheeks glowing in venomous crimson. The shame, of course, was all left to poor Lizzy.
Lizzy sighed as if she have done for hundred and twenty-three times (she had been counting it every day.) and approached Alice. She gently put an arm around her friend and asked sweetly:
"Alice, what's up-"
"That Charlie Chemmier! An absolute lunatic! An insufferable maniac! The greatest, the most legendary stinker in the world!"
"Oh, for heaven's sake, Al, please-"
"I will murder him this time! Smack him right on the face!"
"For the latter, you already did it last week."
"Blow his nose up, then!"
Yelling those words out, she pushed Lizzy's arms from her shoulders and stormed to the stairs. Lizzy followed, clutching (well, at least she tried to) her friends hands.
"Get out of the way, Lizzy! I'm going to commit the greatest murder ever!"
"Alice! For heaven's sake, listen to me!" She pleaded desperately, pulling Alice's arms to make her face her. Her wet bangs trembled at her breath fired fiercely out of her nose. The red, raging dragon snorting harshly at the steps reminded Lizzy strongly of Alice.
"Alice, why don't we talk to Mr. Brown? He might-"
"HA! Mr. Brown! Yea, he will solve it perfectly! What a nice angel, isn't he?" She screamed in hysterical sarcasm.
"Oh, dear Alice, please don't be so angry, it won't get you anywhere here, and-"
"And dear Lizzy, I am not angry, I AM LIVID!"
Thus, she released herself out of Lizzy's grip and thundered up the stairs. Oh, for heaven's sake. A friend of Alice Ambergrit only have two options: whether to join her in her 'murders' or sigh for one hundred and twenty-fifth time.
Lizzy sighed (one hundred and twenty-six.) and leaned on the windowsill. The paintings were wearing out, and the glass looked as if it would shatter any moment.Cold wind blew from the outer world, and parted the dusty, heavy air of the school hall.
Oh, for heaven's sake. (One hundred and twenty-seven.) She thought what she would have been doing if she was that great old Elizabeth Lyndane she used to be. Happy Elizabeth who used to dine at the mahogany table and walk on marble floors. The old times seemed like a dream, a long, long sleep. The time she was innocent and meek; the time she had silk dresses and went to elegant tea parties; the time she strode like a little queen through the glories of London streets. She thought it would continue for ever and ever, until she learned that life changes with a sound of bang. Bang. Her parents lying dead in the living room. Bang. Group of police officers and hungry creditors. Bang. Scary men walking up and down her stairs. Bang. Waking up in an unfamiliar car with two strangers at the front.
And standing here, in this gray, old, dirty hall, with ragged, hand-me-down clothes and dirty clothes and dirty face.
Someone tapped her on the shoulders. It was Lucy, who was in the same year with her in this school.
"Look, I heard about what happened between your friend and Charlie Chimmier. The whole school knows."
One hundred and twenty-eighth sigh. Lizzy simply nodded at Lucy, and she understood.
"Tell your friend to watch out. She'll get a detention if she doesn't behave."
Lizzy nodded again, solemnly. Everyone knew what detention meant in this school.
The bell rang above her face. It was class time. Students hurried up to get to their classrooms.
"Got to run....what have we got today? It's Mr. Max's class. Hope it won't be too dreadful."
Everyone feared Mr. Max, a man with muscly arms and merciless cane.
"I have no idea.....well," she raised her eyebrows, thinking. "Perhaps....Grammar or Algebra?" She suggested, smiling awkwardly.
"Algebra?" She whispered, shivering as if she heard they got a roaring monster in the classroom. "Is that....bad?"
Lizzy wanted to laugh, but she knew how seriously Lucy took it. "Nothing to worry about. See you at class."
Lucy hurried up the stairs, wondering what kind of wailing ghost or bloodthirsty lion that Algy's bra would be. Meanwhile, Lizzy sighed, (one hundred and twenty-nine) from the bottom of her heart hoping that Mr. Max's class won't be worse than Algebra. She didn't know, or didn't want to know why 12-year-old Lucy could not understand what Algebra and Grammar meant. She didn't want to think about the fact that she will not face tables and whiteboards and pens in the 'classroom.' She didn't want to face the fact that detentions were not simply standing before the walls at recess time, and why her teachers were usually alcoholics or street fighters with huge tattoos. She refused to imagine why students disappeared almost every month and what would happen the next day, the next week, or next months. She just wanted to pretend that she was a normal student and she was that old Elizabeth. She wanted to pretend that there was no bang after all and her life hadn't changed.
The sound of Mr. Max's cane was like of a tremendous thunder. Under his dirty boots lay Charlie Chimmier, with blood running down his nose. He was panting and wailing, like a pig going to slaughter. His white lips trembled in the wind, and the delicate blue eyes were fixed desperately to indifferent Mr. Max. He wasn't a person. He wasn't even a human. He was a powerless prey to be thrown down to the cliff of hell. His thin arms hovered aimlessly in the air, like a drowning man searching desperately for something to grip on.
"Mr. Max....please.....I don't want to go to the factory....you won't....you can't...send me there....."
The students darted out from the classrooms and dashed down the stairs, to see the victim to be taken and thrown into the deeper wholes of another hell. Nothing was heard except few gulps and Charlie's harsh breathing. Tension buzzed and zoomed around the hall.
Lizzy felt a strong press on her hands. It was Alice's cold, sweaty hands, trembling inside hers. Her lips vibrated and her face was pale with shock. Her eyes were fused to the boy pleading and wailing on the floor. She was not the one who wanted to murder Charlie Chimmier. She saw him as human, at least. She saw him as a classmate who went through same heaps of burning hells and army of same growling monsters. She saw him as the same, normal child, worthy of someone's care and respect.
The boy struggled and pleaded, but no mercy was given. He was dragged through the quiet hall and the door opened. He was thrown out of the door, and they could see a car waiting outside. No cries or screams were heard. In few seconds the door will be completely shut before him.