Chapter 1:

I | Kiss

The Rowan Tree

Bookmark here

is an annoying day.Bookmark here

I just startedBookmark here

junior college
but there's extra class until 7pm?Bookmark here

We haven't
learnt anything.
It's a pain.Bookmark here

I just startedBookmark here

dating this girl
but she's already texting me every day?Bookmark here

I don't even really like her.
What a pain.Bookmark here

The weather's so hot.Bookmark here

It's so stuffy.Bookmark here

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'That's all-'
I heard before I left.
'-for today. You're dismissed. See you tomorrow, don't forget...'
They follow me like baby ducks
—my friends.Bookmark here

'Man... School is hell.'Bookmark here

'If I see another equation, I'll #*%& it.'Bookmark here

I snort: 'Liar math geek.'
Pushed him aside.Bookmark here

He laughs.
Slammed into me.
(Knocks me off the path.)Bookmark here

'Aeh! Let's play soccer.'Bookmark here

'Gotta go home. Dinner.'Bookmark here

'The others?'Bookmark here

'Mummy's boy.'Bookmark here

'Shut up.'Bookmark here

I open my mouth: ('Let's do it.')
'Clyde!'Bookmark here

That's her voice.Bookmark here

'#%*& lah.'Bookmark here

'Your parasite is here.'Bookmark here

'Buuurn.'Bookmark here

She: You didn't reply my text.
Me: Which one?
She: All of them!
Me: I was in class.Bookmark here

She grabs my arm.Bookmark here

'Anyway! Eat dinner with me.'Bookmark here

Even those with CCA were leaving school.Bookmark here

I can see the crowd
streaming through the back gateBookmark here

next to the rowan tree.Bookmark here

Ria must have waited for me.Bookmark here

I only started dating her
so the other girls
would stop asking.
Bad mistake.Bookmark here

I picked her because she was caring.Bookmark here

Too caring.Bookmark here

So stuffy...Bookmark here

Today is a bad day
—we've dated long enough.Bookmark here

'No.'Bookmark here

I'm not really interested in you, loser.Bookmark here

She is saying something.Bookmark here

My friends are ahead,
outside the gate (waiting/laughing).Bookmark here

Orange rowan leaves fallBookmark here

like my moodBookmark here

and i see
her,Bookmark here

under the rowan tree.Bookmark here

Black hair (it's not tied up).
A red skirt (our uniform's beige).
Reading (a Bible?).Bookmark here

I know most of the girls by sight.
(For some reason they keep introducing themselves to me.)Bookmark here

I don't know her.Bookmark here

'Clyde! Did you hear what i said?'Bookmark here

Ria's nails, painted illegal pink,
dig into my skin.Bookmark here

I grab the strange girl.Bookmark here

Pulled her up.Bookmark here

The book slides from her white fingers
—tumbles over a tree root.Bookmark here

I kiss her
in front of my girlfriend.Bookmark here

There is a gaspBookmark here

(not sure whose).Bookmark here

Her lips are soft,
like marshmallow,Bookmark here

teeth parted in surprise.Bookmark here

But that's not
the point.Bookmark here

I think I imagined it butBookmark here

the rowan tree begins to whisper
in a language I don't know.Bookmark here

Bookmark here

Ria's grip on my armBookmark here

loosens,Bookmark here

releases.Bookmark here

A choked voice curses me.Bookmark here

Footsteps fade.Bookmark here

I can only see the Bible
hit the grass and open
to a page with a golden heading:Bookmark here

REVELATIONBookmark here

I am thrust backward,
looking into angry black eyes.Bookmark here

'What are you doing?'Bookmark here

Her black hair flashes over her face
as she backs away from me.Bookmark here

The world tiltsBookmark here

and she runs away.Bookmark here

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She isn't that strong.
I'm sure of it.Bookmark here

But I'm falling onto the ground?Bookmark here

(Arrghh, so embarrassing!)
I stand up immediately.Bookmark here

I am still there,
under the rowan tree.Bookmark here

But the school gate is gone.Bookmark here

The whole school is gone.Bookmark here

All of Singapore is gone.Bookmark here

I am halfway up a mountainBookmark here

looking down
at a golden cityBookmark here

below.Bookmark here

A donkey stands next to me
wings folded by its side,
(waiting).Bookmark here

It turns to meBookmark here

with a realistic expressionBookmark here

and speaks,
a low voice,Bookmark here

'I've been waiting for you.'Bookmark here

[Read the full story at!]Bookmark here

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