Chapter 8 | I Don't Need Your Help

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Elena's P.O.V.

The deeper the monk guided me in the woods, the more I recognized my surroundings and the path to the tree portal.

At least I'm not getting stuck here, I thought with the feeling of relief washing over me. Well, unless the portal decided to stop working, that is.

"I think I should walk from here," I halted and looked at the old man who was about to reveal his protesting words. "The. . . portal thingy, or whatever it is, doesn't really work when there are others near it."

That's at least my theory of why it disappeared a month ago.

His face turned into a puzzled look, but nonetheless, he nodded.

"Ah, I see," his eyes were locked on the path, narrowing as if he was swimming in his mind with waves of questions.

"Thank you for your help, Frans," I snapped his attention back to me. "I'm pretty sure I would've died in that village without anyone guiding me out of it." I half-truly and half-jokingly stated, which he commented on with a brief chuckle. "And also, I was wondering. . . "

"What is on your mind, child?" Francis spoke when seconds of silence passed by, and he patiently waited for me to reformulate my question.

"Well, you see. . . I was wondering if you could, you know, maybe, perhaps teach me a thing or two about. . . playing the piano?" I almost winced at the shrill volume my voice ended at.

For all I know, with just one little lesson with him guiding me, I could be the next Mozart.

The monk smiled warmly. "Of course! It would be my pleasure to teach you, Elena." I had to restrain myself from hugging him when he said that. "But for now, go home and rest, you need that," he pointed at my tired face. "Goodbye, dear, I do hope your next visit to the theater will happen soon in the coming days."

After exchanging our goodbyes, we went our separate ways; he walked back to the village whereas I searched for my phone. There are exactly two reasons why I can't go home without it: one, Hazel would kill me if I don't call her, and two, Hazel would murder me if I don't contact her.

And as you can see, none of those options look any tempting.

A sudden feeling of déjà vu hit me like a punch, interrupting my search and train of thoughts.

I swear, God has an obsession to ruin my life.

It wasn't before a soft and familiar thing brushed against my leg that I actually reacted. "Ah!" I jumped in the air when the ball of fur continued to swirl around my feet, resulting in me stumbling backward and falling on something hard and shaped.

As we all know, walking backward without knowing what lies behind you is the dumbest thing you could ever do. Take it from me.

However, stumbling backward is just as smart as letting Patrick Star do a brain surgery on you - hell, you could just as well throw your brain in the bin.

I gasped in pain when I met the fall's end; the skin on my hands covered in drops of blood. My butt, on the other hand, felt like it had been kicked a thousand times by a hiking shoe.

The sound of rocks colliding and tumbling at each other continued to fill my ears, and only died after a couple of long, painful seconds. It was only when the entire chaos was over that I could actually register what in the Holy Sam Hill had happened.

"Oh, you've got to be kidding me," I mumbled under my breath, happy there wasn't any pan lying around here or else I would have smacked myself until all my teeth had fallen out.

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