5 - Where Camping is Reluctantly Done

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 (**A/N: I tacked on roughly four paragraphs to the last chapter. The chapters I have saved in Word format are way too long to post all at once on Wattpad, so I'm cutting them up, which is why some of them end awkwardly and begin awkwardly. Sorry 'bout that! This chapter is technically the start of my "Chapter Two", so, that'll give you an idea xD)


         I didn’t know if I believed in fate or not. Or being psychic, or fortune telling. Mostly fate. Having your future laid out for you, everything set into place, was a hard concept to grasp.

         I believed in doing things that altered your future, and I believed in coincidences. Because the morning after I had the flashback, my mother announced we were going back to Iliadys before school started.

         It was over a plate of eggs, sunny-side up, and a couple sausages. I was taking a gulp of orange juice when my mother said,

         “My, it’s been such a long time since we were at Iliadys,” she said in an airy voice I knew wasn’t the least bit unconcerned.

“Mrs. Harold and I were talking about it and we decided. Camp Iliadys this Friday.”

         I choked on the juice and swallowed it, sending the pulpy goodness rushing down the wrong pipe. I started to cough, my eyes watering.

         “W-What?” I managed to spit out. I had been looking forward to the last few days before school started. I just wanted to flop around the house like a noodle for three days. It was an agreeable plan.

         “We’re going to Iliadys this Friday,” repeated my mother. She sat down across from me with a steaming cup of coffee. “I checked your school website. First day isn’t until Monday, so no excuses.”

         “But…I have homework to do. Tons of homework to catch up on. Tons and tons of it,” I blathered. “I won’t be able to get it done by the time we get back.”

         My mother sighed and adjusted her long, flowing skirt. “Jasslyn. I’ve raised you for sixteen years now. I know when you’re lying. You didn’t get any homework. And I said, no excuses.

         I sighed. Hoping she would buy it was pretty stupid.

         “Start packing on Wednesday, all right? You’re so indecisive, and last-minute, too.”

         I stared after her with yolk dripping down my fork.

         Four days and a shouting match later, I was sitting slouched in the front seat, cushioned by my pillow and bundled up in a small throw blanket with my lap feeling strangely empty. I always brought Horace with me on these trips. But after the remark from my mother, I figured it wasn’t the best decision to take him with me.

         Dreading a silent car ride but refusing to be the icebreaker, I reached for the stereo and turned it on. It crackled for a few moments before a woman’s voice floated through the speakers.

         “reportedly missing for several days. Her husband is on the air with us and has a short message for his wife and his friend.”

         A couple seconds later, a shaky male voice began speaking.

         “Lissy, baby…” His voice cracked and he hurriedly cleared it. “Jack…I don’t care if there’s something going on between the two of you, I just…come back and we’ll…we’ll sort it out, okay, whatever it is.”

         The woman paused briefly, waiting to see if the man had anything else to say. He didn’t, for the woman took hold of the broadcast again and said quietly,

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