In Another Time (Clea and Adi)

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***


"Si Clea ba 'yan? She's going to study here already?" 


I looked down again while walking through the hallway, tightening my grip on my shoulder bag. I was trying to find my room since it was the first day of school. I was finally given a chance to experience the highschool life that I wanted.


Ever since I was a child, I was already exposed to the show business industry since my dad is an actor and my mom was also an actress and a model. I already appeared in movies when I was 3 years old. I played a role as a couple's daughter. 


I did not choose this life... It was just already made for me. It was already there ever since I was born. It was completely laid out in front of me. Ang gagawin ko na lang ay maglakad pataas nang pataas hanggang sa makarating sa tuktok ng industriyang 'to. 


I was awarded a lot from being a great child actress. I was versatile and I could adapt well. While kids my age were peacefully enrolled in an elementary school, I was attending an acting school. I was home-schooled ever since I was a child and this was only my first time attending a real school. Heinrich International School. 


"Hi, Clea! Can we get a picture?" a guy teased while I was walking. 


I did not talk and just entered my room. As soon as my classmates saw me, all of them stopped and just stared at me as I walked to an empty seat. It was like they were starstruck to see me. Hindi ko alam ang gagawin ko. Umupo lang ako at tumingin sa harapan. I wanted to make friends but I was scared that they will just use me and betray me in the end. 


My parents always told me to pick my friends because the people I will get close with will also tell a lot about me as a person, and the industry I was in would love that. They would love to get some intel about me in school. People will get curious on my personality and attitude outside set... so I still could not be myself. There will always be a pair of eyes watching me everywhere I go. 


I was acting every day, every hour, every minute... and I was self-conscious all the time so I remained silent the whole day. No one also tried to talk to me and get a picture. It was... so lonely. I wanted to be alone so during lunch time, I went up the stairs and saw a door at the end of the hallway. 


DO NOT ENTER. A sign was hanging on the knob but it was slightly opened already. When I looked, it was another set of stairs so I went up again until I reached the end. Isang pulang pinto na naman 'yon at pagkalabas ko, sinalubong ako ng malakas na hangin. It reached the top of the building. The rooftop. 


I looked around and saw no one so I went to the edge and sat on the floor with my back against the metal railings. Nilapag ko ang bag ko sa gilid at kinuha ang lunch box na dala ko. My mom said eating outside food might be dangerous because what if someone would try to poison me? It was absurd. Why would they? 

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