Thursday, 25 September 2008


Ellie was having a wonderful birthday. Aunt Zoe (not her real aunt, but Mummy said it was more polite) had bought her a silver locket with inscription: “the best god-daughter ever”. She had invited seven friends for tea – with cake, jelly and ice-cream – and games. Joe had won musical chairs – again! Sarah had won “Pass the Parcel” and loved the pack of fortune-telling cards (they would have fun with those in the playground tomorrow). The best game had been “Memories” where daddy had put lots of items on a tray and after studying them briefly, they had to write down all they could remember. Ellie had got them nearly all, but had forgotten the auburn hair dye and the business card. She had remembered the withered poinsetta – but, so had everybody else.

After everyone had gone home, she went to write up her journal. As usual, she chose from the jar of sharpened pencils. The dusty radio in the corner played a new song by Simon and Garfunkel – somehow, she knew that “Bridge Over Troubled Water” was going to be big.
As Ellie grew sleepy, the room started to spin – gently at first, then more quickly. She closed her eyes – and when she opened them, she was staring at her brand new laptop. She glanced across at the bottle of herbal medicine her friend had given her to protect against flu. “Sure is powerful” she thought, as she started to type up her journal.

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