Chapter 11

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Ava's POV

I stand on my tips of my toes as I pick off leaves from the Tree. I get about 10 of them, we dip them in and then lay them out to dry.

I really hope this works. I sit back against the Tree, and just enjoy the feeling of the wind across my face. My hair blows and gets in a tangled mess, but I don't really care. I'll be going home soon anyways. I have so much homework, ugh.

"Ah, shit! Isn't the history paper due tomorrow?" I bolt up in realization.

Connor is surprised by my outburst, but nods. "Yep. Don't tell me you didn't start yet..." he says.

I nod, and run my fingers through my hair in frustration.

The leaves are just about dry now. I change the subject and say, "Well nothing earth-shattering has really happened yet."

"Who said the result couldn't be subtle? Maybe it already worked. We just have to test it out," Connor replies.

"Well, try opening it up then," I say.

Connor gets up and attempts to open it. "Okay, maybe not..." he says. Usually, it slides open just by tugging on the crack. I sigh and keep repeating the poem in my head. The first to paint our leaves with white, will lead on into the night. What didn't we do right?Maybe Connor was wrong, and it wasn't supposed to be taken literally.

I'm wondering if Connor is thinking the same thing, when I look up and see his face, which clearly reads 'lightbulb'. He smiles, dips his finger in the paint can, and reaches up to one of the leaves on the Tree. He brushes it across evenly and then does it again with another leaf. I watch, curious of what difference he thinks this makes.

"The painted leaves are dead," he explains, "They have no connection to the Tree after being picked off. Maybe they still need to be connected to the Tree, alive."

We sit back down, and wait. I seriously need to go home soon and do that history paper... "Do you wanna just go home now and check up on it tomorrow? I really need to get home," I say.

He sighs and agrees. We bid our farewells and I head home. I wonder how many more failures we will go through before we save the Tree. I never thought about it, but what if there's a time limit on this? What if we don't save it in time?

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