Ararnia headed off. Tiberius, Normal and Ocacia just watched her.
‘We can’t just turn up,’ said Normal.
‘You did yesterday,’ said Tiberius.
‘They might not be in,’ said Normal.
Ocacia pushed past him, took a few steps and narrowed her eyes behind her red glasses.
‘I think they are,’ she said. ‘Ooh no. Is one of them sort of tall and graceful?’
Normal remembered going weak at the knees yesterday. ‘Yes,’ he said. ‘That’s Mary.’
‘Looks like she’s coming this way.’
The others looked into the distance. They couldn’t see anything, just trees in the forest.
‘How far can you see?’ asked Ararnia.
‘Are those glasses like binoculars or something?’ asked Tiberius.
‘What are you rabble up to?’
They swung round, it was Podium and Wagget.
‘Shouldn’t you underlings be in class learning your ABC?’ Podium said.
‘Who are you?’ demanded Ararnia.
‘Only the two most important people in the school,’ said Podium. ‘If you want to know anything, just come to us.’
‘He’s talkative, ‘said Ararnia, nodding towards Wagget.
‘He can’t get a word in edgeways,’ said Tiberius and Podium laughed.
‘Too right,’ he said. ‘Now, you rabble got everything you need? Me and Wagget can always provide any extra luxuries for a small price.’
‘Can you get me a pie?’ said Tiberius. ‘Steak would be perfect.’
‘No they can’t, but my sister can.’
It was Mary from the cottage. She was walking as if she was gliding towards them. She smiled at Normal when she recognised him, she was carrying her pad and brushes again.
‘Hello Normal? Everything okay?’ she asked.
Normal nodded. He couldn’t quite find his voice. Tiberius watched him and laughed.
‘I think Mr Podium and Mr Wagget have got plenty of other things to do, and there’s not really any time for pies now.’ She shielded her eyes and glanced up into the sun. ‘Looks to me like it’s lesson time. Anyone got Art with me?’
She shrugged and flashed her winning smile at them, and wandered away, kicking at the grass with her bare feet as she went. Tiberius nudged Normal and winked at him.
‘What?’ said Normal.
‘Nothing,’ said Tiberius, but he turned and winked at Ararnia too. She giggled.
‘I think it’s time for Miracles,’ said Acacia, quietly.
They headed back to the Grange.
‘They call me Venus Flytrap,’ the girl with thin green lips said.
She gave them a sly grin…
To be continued…