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Monday, 16 May 2011

THIS: Chapter 1

CHAPTER ONE

She was stunned when she saw the new addition to the class. She looked at James’ direction and noted that he was staring back at her. Puzzled. Or was he also thrilled? He must be thinking the same thing. It was clear in his eyes. Or so she thought. Like Careen, he noticed that the girl look exactly like someone he and she were used to being around. The newcomer met his gaze then smiled instantly. James is no doubt the best-looking person in the room. He returned the gesture then looked down at the book on his desk to organize his thoughts. Could she be the girl they swore to forget? Was he mistaken when he thought that Careen must have been thinking the same thing? He decided to speak to his best friend later. Careen was caught off guard when she noticed the exchange of smiles. She was excited for a minute before worry finally took over. This can’t be happening, she said to herself.

They met at the cafeteria by lunchtime. The two of them only share four courses out of seven and only two of those are taken for the day. Psychology 140, with the course title Personality, is scheduled first thing in the morning at eight o’clock. Careen’s second class, right before lunchtime, would be an Introduction to Logic while James’ is Math 100. The next class for the day that they were classmates would be Speech. A rumour about them having a romantic relationship is starting to spread. James never thought of Careen as more than a reliable friend. His best-est friend. Sure, they have been through tough times together and have known each other since childhood, but he can never look at her in a more than casual manner. He believes that Careen have the same idea in mind. They sat at their favourite spot by the window overlooking the small park. Children of varied ages are playing near the pond while their mothers or guardians are watching them from the mat-covered grass. It’s a Saturday and most people are out for a picnic with their families. For Careen, it’s a good thing that their school is located near a park. She likes being surrounded by many people now. Not that they have to care about her or something. She lets time pass by just observing them and managing her thoughts, minding the things that make her world turn at the moment. She and James were sitting there for almost a quarter of an hour now.

She decided to break the silence. “Could she be who I think she is?”

James looked up at her from the cup of coffee in his hands. “So, you are indeed thinking the same thing about her huh?” They were looking deeply in each other’s eyes, lost in their own thoughts, when he finally said, “Yes. I think she could be your sister. They never found a body right?”

That was entirely the farthest thing from what she wanted to hear.

....

Time passed quickly. She had spent nine hours in school and now she’s home. She still couldn’t believe whom she saw in school today. It was her sister. No doubt. She looks exactly like Camilla. Only sweeter. She looked really stunning when she stood there in front of the class. The new girl in school, who was introduced as Janine, is far more polished than what Careen’s sister would be if only she had lived with their family. She went straight into her room to check the pictures of Camilla that she have. Since she disappeared, Careen never looked at those pictures until now.

Careen had trouble sleeping that night. She always had a problem getting sleep quickly but still she felt that it was the longest night in her entire life. She was thinking so much about that girl Janine and her huge resemblance to Careen’s dear sister Camilla. She wondered if James might be feeling the same thing. After all, he is considered a part of their family and they have known each other since childhood. As Careen looked in the mirror that night, the smiles that had taken place between Janine and James early this morning crossed her mind. She knows how much James loved or still loves her sister. Now that Camilla might be alive in Janine’s facade, they would look good together.

It would be alright if only Careen does not love him and did not swear that she would love no one else.

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