Chapter Four

At five in the morning, Susy found herself running down the corridor to the bathroom, again. She made it in time to puke into the toilet.

This was a routine now. Every morning between 4 and 10 oíclock, she would feel ill, and again in the afternoon. Sometimes it would last a whole day, and be gone the next. Sometimes she would spend the whole time puking, sometimes it would just be a headache, but whatever, it was nasty, and she didnít want it. She hadnít the guts to tell anyone though, because of what she feared it was.

Of course, it was just her overactive imagination, and completely ridiculous, but all the same, she didnít want to find out.

Or so she had thought previously.

Today, she was beginning to change her mind. She had run to the bathroom three times already, and the pain in both her stomach and her head meant she didnít have the strength to go back to her room. She didnít care if anyone found her today, she just couldnít move.

She felt something rise in her throat again, and leaned to the toilet bowl, shutting her eyes so that she didnít have to see what came out. Whatever it was burnt its way out of her body, a thin yellow liquid, hot and acidic.

{Shit} she thought, {stomach acid.}

Now that there was no food in her stomach, her body was sending out the only thing it had left, which meant even more pain. She dreaded what would happen when that ran out.

After a while, she slept from exhaustion.

Later that day, Susanne had recovered somewhat, and was looking for Paige.

She had decided that finding out was the only logical solution, and the only way to do that without the teachers being involved was to get one of the others to take her to a chemistís in town.

Paige was the only suitable candidate: Jubilee couldnít drive, Susy didnít really know what to make of M, whether she was trustworthy or not, and the guys? If it turned out to be what she thought, she definitely didnít want a bloke with her. So Paige it was.

Once in town, Paige dropped her outside the chemistís and parked down the road.

Susanne browsed the shelves, trying to stop her heart beating loud enough for anyone else to hear. She was scared to actually buy it, but forced herself to hurry before Paige came back and found her. Obviously, she hadnít told her the truth, what would be the point in that? More moralising or pity? {Thanks, but Iíll pass on that one.} So instead she had said she needed hayfever tablets, a brand she wasnít sure was available in the US. This had brought no protestations, so she hoped it would hold.

Unfortunately, there was a drawback to this plan; money. The pregnancy test was more expensive than she had anticipated, a lot more. She stood staring at the price tag, not believing it could be true.


The voice made her jump. This was probably true, as Susy had to concentrate to focus her vision. Holding on to the shelf to stop herself from collapsing, she said weakly, "Can you lend me ten bucks?"

"Ten bucks? Hayfever tablets, ten bucks?"

"Iím sorry. I need to get that," she pointed at it.

"Susanne! Woah! Slow down, youíre losing me. Pregnancy test?"

"Please, just lend me the ten dollars." Her vision was definitely clouding over, and she felt dizzier by the second.

"S-sure. Just a moment," she fumbled with her purse. "There ya go. You okay now?"

"Yeah, thanks." She struggled to compose herself, then made her way to the till.

As they went towards the car, Paige asked tentatively, "You want to do it now, get it over with, or later?"

Susanne shrugged, still not quite with it since nearly blacking out in the shop. "Now, why not?"

Macdonaldís was, unknowingly, kind enough to do the honours, and after ten minutes, Susy dug up the courage to go back out into the restaurant.

Paige watched her approach, trying to read the result from her manner. It was difficult, to say the least, but she was put out of her misery when Susy, tight-lipped with tears nodded. Then she shut her eyes, sighed, and crumpled into a heap on the floor.

E-mail me, Cynjen, the author, with comments!

Batch 1, Serial Number