The week was up, and still the boy didn’t return.
Worry became the girl’s constant state. Where was he? Why hadn’t he returned? Was he truly angry with her? Or was something else keeping him away?
Well, nothing had kept him away before. So that last worry was quickly debunked. No, there could only be one answer. He no longer wished to see her. She had pushed him away, and he realised he liked it better far away from her. Just like whoever it was that trapped her in the tower all those years ago.
Boredom and loneliness return to colour her world. She tried to bake and play music and paint, but it wasn’t the same. Because she wasn’t sharing it with anyone. She could create all she wanted but, with only herself and an indifferent dragon as an audience, all of it soon lost its appeal.
She dreamed of being able to paint the skies with a message to the boy. To ask him – no, beg him – to come back, so they could share their lives with one another again. But, even with all the hours and all the days of nothing that she had, she still hadn’t found a way to get to him.
Looking down the window at the dragon one evening, she wondered again at jumping out, wondered if it would hurt, or if the dragon would catch her. Or if maybe she would fly. She steadied herself on the ledge, eyes closed, wind biting at her face, and took one deep breath. Arms outstretched, as though willing them to be wings would make them so, she lifted one foot, readied herself.
She was so close.
But she pulled away at the last moment. Scrambled backwards, falling to the floor of her room in a heap. She backed away for good measure, and hugged her legs to her chest.
Well, she had tried. Nobody could say she hadn’t.
Shaking off the adrenaline coursing through her body, she readied herself for bed, and went to sleep, wishing harder than she ever had that a door might appear to let her escape.
TO BE CONTINUED