Hello once again! Been working part-time as a data entry clerk for the past three days, which isn't exactly tiring, but can turn out to be one of the most boring jobs ever. It's also kinda reassuring that Charmaine commented on the MSN piece being one of the best ones...more reassuring than delighting or satisfying, actually. Does that make me insecure? Well, I did stay up quite late to finish the whole darned thing. And btw Beatrice, yes, Caller Three does seem terribly familiar now that you make me think about it...
We're done, then! The New Girl rolls on, and it's time to give y'all the big payoff to the suspense you've endured so far. Drumrolls, please!
"So this is how the story has to end. No one can be trusted."
May could feel something unswallowable cling on to the insides of her throat. What was this maniac thinking? Was she going to kill her?
"You're thinking whether I'm going to kill you."
Beads of cold sweat slithered downwards May's forehead. Is she reading my mind?
"I'm not really reading your mind," her lips sneered lopsidedly. "The fairies told me that."
"I still remember so well...Saras and gang had been extremely mean to me that day. They snatched away my Geography research folder which was due that day and wouldn't give it back. Nobody would help me. I don't think anyone even believed me. Exasperated, I ran to the school field after reccess and hid there crying. I didn't know how long I was planning to stay there, or what I was going to do after that. Everything just seemed so hopeless."
"I must have been crying for an hour. Maybe more, I don't know. All I know is that I felt this warmth coming from the top of my head. It was like a candle slowly burning up, calling out to me in this sleepy yet soothing voice. I never once felt afraid as they lifted me over the fence and down the dirt path into the most splendid place I had ever seen. Everything I had ever dreamed of, right down to the bunny holes and purple butterflies, they were all there."
"For a whole afternoon I was no more the lonely weird girl with no parents and getting picked on for no reason. Since Mom died, I had never once felt so happy. But before I knew it the sun was setting and I had to go. Once they brought me back over the fence an entire search team was waiting for me. My auntie, the teachers, some students, and even the police. I was in big trouble for over a month."
"And that is why," Jean dug out a packet of very-familiar little red cubes. "The fairies gave me these."
She had offered them one of those when they first met. It tasted no less than horrible, May recalled.
Jean nodded. "Yups. You had one before. Ever noticed how time seems to stop when you're inside the secret garden? Well, that's because it does. That's why we were never late for classes or had search teams coming after us while we were here."
Oh my gosh. She's right.
"The pieces of the puzzle are falling in place, no? But of course, that stolen time can't just appear like that. It has to come from somewhere. Care to take a guess?"
May wrinkled hands started shaking uncontrollably as she finally understood everything that was happening.