Wednesday 16 May 2012

'Dear Diary' by Laura Huntley

Bethany opened her diary. Except it wasn’t her diary. It looked like hers: brown, leather bound, 2012, page a day. But it certainly didn’t belong to her.
Christopher scooped up his diary, but, somehow even before he opened it, he knew it wasn’t his: brown, leather bound, 2012, page a day. His senses were correct, it didn’t belong to him.
Bethany pictured the kafuffle of this morning, on board the 75 bus when the idiot driving the red transit van had unexpectedly pulled out.
Christopher recalled the emergency stop, his diary falling to the floor.
Bethany remembered searching for her dropped diary, she’d found it underneath the seat to the left.
‘Watch what you’re fucking doing!’ they whispered, mimicking the angry bus driver.
They understood what had happened. Identical diaries. Swapped.
Christopher decided not to read it, it wouldn’t be right to intrude upon someone else’s personal thoughts.
Bethany tried not to, but she’d always been a curious girl.
Christopher smelled the pages; they held the aroma of those violet sweets he used to eat as a small child, and then he could no longer resist.
Bethany opened up at a random page and instantly wept at the death and awkward funeral of Christopher’s grandfather.
Christopher started at the beginning, his heart broke that Bethany had started the New Year feeling so alone; hiding in her bedroom to escape the spiteful words her parents hurtled at one another.
Bethany thought that Christopher should forget all about lusting after flame haired Nicole Cooper, she clearly didn’t deserve him.
Christopher felt rage that Ben Richards, in the school year above, had tried to force Bethany into a physical relationship that she hadn’t been ready for.
Bethany laughed at Christopher’s regrettable trial with alcohol.
Christopher held his breath when he read that Bethany’s Mum had gone missing.
Bethany wondered what Christopher looked like. She couldn’t remember a single face from the bus.
Christopher had a funny feeling inside and forgot all about Nicole Cooper.
Bethany wished all boys could be like Christopher.
Christopher longed to meet Bethany.
Bethany got on the 75 bus the following morning, with the diary in her hand.
So did Christopher.
Bethany waved at him.
Christopher shyly smiled.
Bethany dreamily sighed and moved up to make a space for him.
Christopher’s butterflies flew away.   

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