ect.13

United Kingdom

"Words, in my not-so-humble opinion, are our most inexhaustible source of magic" ~ Albus Dumbledore
Absolute nerd | 100% cat person | Ravenclaw | ISFJ

Study hard... dream big... live well...

[Joined March 2020]

Message to Readers

This is part of a longer story that I'm writing. I'm not posting everything (just some extracts) but if you read extracts one and two it might make more sense. Any and all feedback is amazing - reviews are fantastic but comments or likes are appreciated too if you don't have the time. Thanks so much for reading!

Behind the Door [a working title] - Extract Three

April 25, 2020

FREE WRITING

1
There was a bad feeling in my gut almost as soon as I entered. Something just didn’t feel right. 
In spite of it, I carried on. 

I soon got lost in the library, as I often did, wandering up and down the shelves of books. My fingers traced their spines, feeling the magic that came with stories, passed down and told over generations, beckoning me further in. I couldn’t help it - my instinct was dampened down by my sense of wonder at a whole room of new worlds to explore. I chose an important-looking book from one of the high shelves, with a worn, regal red cover. It was one of the thickest in its row, a good thousand pages by my reckoning, and had a smooth gold foil decoration on the spine - a book of beauty and worth, I could see that much. Carefully, I lifted it off the shelf and found a table, hidden away in a far corner, and opened it up. A History of the Armed Forces, it read. Doesn’t seem that dangerous, I thought, I wonder why it’s in here. As I turned over to the first page, I noticed something: a small, faded stamp of ink on the inside cover. 

Property of Keirad Academy, it said. 

That’s odd. This isn’t Keirad Academy. Why does this book say it belongs to Keirad Academy, then? All sorts of bizarre explanations found their way into my head, accompanied by a chorus of questions, overwhelming me with mysteries to solve. I didn’t get to think about them, however, as a bell rang somewhere overhead, making me jump and reminding me where I was. As quickly as I could, I leaped from my table in the corner and made to put the book back on the shelf, where it would sit, hopefully undisturbed, until I could come back and investigate. There was no way I was letting this go; in the last ten minutes, I’d discovered so much about the hidden secrets of Philomena Prep, and I wouldn’t rest until I’d found the answers. I didn’t have time to ponder now, though - as I crept back towards the door, as quietly as was humanly possible, I glanced at my watch, and stopped short. 

My next lesson wasn’t for another half an hour. 

I stared at the watch face, hands ticking round as usual. I unfastened the strap and took it off my wrist, shaking and tapping it until I was sure there wasn’t a fault. If it wasn’t my time that was wrong, there must be another reason why the bell rang half an hour early… 

Suddenly, as if out of nowhere, I heard the sound of an army, marching in perfect synchronisation. What was going on? Were we being invaded? I had no idea. Just as I was about to get out of there, I saw them. Not an army, thank goodness - I breathed a sigh of relief - but something infinitely more puzzling: boys. Living in a girls’ school in the middle of nowhere, most of us weren't used to interacting with boys on a regular basis, only when we went home for the holidays. I spotted them through one of the library’s windows, a shelf or two away from me, outside on the concrete that circled the school building; there must have been hundreds of them, all together, lined up in rows according to their age. Some were tall and broad-shouldered, a couple even had fully-fledged beards, and some looked younger than my ten-year-old cousin. They all wore a navy blue uniform: the younger boys had beige shorts and lighter blue polo shirts underneath their navy blazers, while the older ones wore beige, straight cut trousers and white shirts with ties that had slim gold stripes on them. All of the boys were straight-backed and serious - not unlike the girls at Philomena Prep during assembly. I stood, stiff, on the spot, unable to move, just staring out of that sliver of the window. My brain couldn’t comprehend it: what on earth was happening? There must have been a whole school’s worth of boys outside, and teachers too, and I couldn’t see anyone from Philomena Prep there. Had no-one noticed? Was something happening? Wh… what? 

It was only when the boys began to move, scattering in all directions, that I regained my composure and realised that I needed to get to class soon. I turned sharply on my heels, and, as fast as I could, slipped back through the door and into the familiar back corner of the library. 
In my haste, I barely noticed one crucial detail, caught in the corner of my eye as I rushed through the door: on the other side, a sign. Stuck perfectly in the centre, written in block capitals. 

“Do not enter under any circumstances. Boys caught breaking the rule will be severely reprimanded.”

I felt sure I wouldn’t sleep a wink that night. 

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  • April 25, 2020 - 5:59am (Now Viewing)

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4 Comments
  • ect.13

    Thanks! Keep an eye out for Extract Four - coming soon :)


    7 months ago
  • Juniper

    This is so good!!! I love this!!!


    7 months ago
  • ect.13

    Thank you so much - I'm glad you like it :)
    Your feedback means so much to me and I'll post another soon!


    7 months ago
  • And_The_Stars_Laughed

    Yayyyy! I'm so glad you published another extract! :)
    This was so good it kept me hooked the entire time! I love how you describe the confusion that the protagonist is feeling and the plot twist you included (how Philomena Prep suddenly has boys when its an all-girl school) is totally unexpected! Great job -- I can't wait to find out what happens next!


    7 months ago