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Collapse (A young adult novel)

By: Rhensis

Chapter 1, Carriad Finley is a perfectly normal, (yet popular) girl. She gets good grades, works hard, but always puts her social life first. One day, the collapse of a total stranger puts her on edge. Charlotte Elias had had a heart transplant when she was five. She knew she only had a year at most to live. So when she collapses, she has no idea that her illness could affect a total stranger so much. \'Collapse\' tells the tales of Carriad and Charlotte. Written from both their point of views. This novel came to me when I was listening to an author talk about how she was obsessed with fate. I thought about what would happen if a stranger collapsed in that hall that day. Also, credit for the name \'Collapse\', goes to my good friend Izzy ;) *For XPS\'s rounds contest :), for the lines \'Happily Ever After\' and \'We all have a story to tell\'

Chapter 1 - 365

Carriad's P.O.V



No one ever thinks that a total stranger could change their life. Hell, I know I didn’t.

I was born on December 25th 1995. That makes me a Capricorn. Strong-willed yet patient. Yeah, right.

On the 15th June 2011, I sat quietly in a packed hall, listening to the voice of the guest speaker, which was painted so heavily and recently with boredom that it was dripping onto us with every single word. Behind the dull woman, our headmistress kept a stern eye on us, sometimes catching the eye of a student, only to shake her head and move away from them with disappointment.

An occasional tug of my long plait came from behind, as my best friend got bored with nothing else to do. Usually, she would play on her mobile, but Miss Gressen had been on the war-path that morning, and it had been swiftly confiscated. Every time she did so, I would look back and scowl half-jokingly at her, before returning to my silent watch over the guest speaker.

If you had asked me then, however, what the woman was on about, I would have stared at you blankly, as if you had never asked the question in the first place.

Next to me, Jonny, (my super gorgeous boyfriend), grinned cheekily at me whenever I looked at him. Secretly, I hated it when he did that, but I wasn’t about to make us break up over something so trivial. If I had thought that he had no faults, I would never have asked him out in the first place, so I really shouldn’t complain.

Yes, I had to ask him out. He’s the cutest boy in school, (well, in my opinion anyway), and there were guys lining up to go on a date with me, (I have looks, in case you were wondering). Yet I had to make the first move, even though you could tell he was crazy about me. Well, I guess that’s just him. Ever the challenger.

Out of the blue, some of the freshly painted words catch my attention, and I listen a little more carefully.

“Fate, my dear children, is what controls us all. For all you know, there could be someone... Wait, let me just put this into practice. Everybody look at the person directly opposite them in this room, the further away the better,” It took about five minutes for everyone to register what was going on, even then most of the pupils taking the opportunity to stare lustfully at their soul mates and not really playing out the rules of the exercise. I was irritated with Jonny and Crystal, so I looked across the room as instructed.

My eyes met a young looking girl, but I knew she was my age. Her looks were pretty dull, with simple blonde hair tied up in a neat bun, ordinary green eyes that were soft, portraying her shy personality, and fair skin that pretty much matched half of the other kids in the school.

I knew that she was looking at me too, and I smiled gently at her. Her face showed a look of shock, although I wasn’t sure why. Perhaps it was because she knew someone as popular as me probably would never have had anything to do with a girl like her unless it was to torment.

“Now, the person you are looking at right now could change your life, believe it or not,” I confess I didn’t believe it one bit.

Have you ever wondered how fast your life can change? How a single moment, a small action, could change everything that happened from there on in? Has that ever happened to
you? Have you ever chosen to sit next to someone on a bus and that person end up your husband in a few years time?

Personally, I thought that stuff only happened in fairytales, that kind of happily ever after.

Then the girl who I had caught the eye of stood up, shaking. Every head in the room turned to look at her. Some of us, including me, stood up with her, unsure about what was going on.

With no warning, she collapsed on the floor.

Jonny, who had been pulling me down, ceased tugging and gasped. My brain was fuzzy, not really sure about what was going on, and I was unable to move.

I’m not sure when reality clicked in and I began to dial 999. All I know is that it was too late...

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