Wilhelmina Winters: Fourteen

Wil walked among her chattering, self-absorbed peers in a protective bubble of her own thoughts and attentions. She held the second note against her heart with her books and notebook. She walked in as straight but casual a line as she could to the lunchroom.

Though she worried about the person behind the spying eyes at the door from earlier, Wil had to eat. She often wasn’t full from what they ate at home, and school lunch was a reduced cost besides.

As such, Wil found herself looking through clear sneeze guards at options that resembled edible items a few minutes later. She selected the Chicken Fried Steaklike Meat and Potatoes with Vegetable meal, snagging a roll and a bowl of previously-canned fruit.

Wil relayed her account number to the bored lunch lady sitting at the computer, then carefully spied around to find an unoccupied table. She checked around to ensure no one was paying her attention, either, and saw nothing suspicious. Hopefully, whoever had seen her in the courtyard was long gone.

Since the lunch period was nearly over, Wil was able to find a vacated blue table near a wall. She carefully set her food on it, retrieved some utensils, then came back and sat herself down on the matching blue bench. She casually pulled out the folded note she’d saved from under the brick, then picked up her roll and took a bite.

Wil began unfolding the paper, separating the little edge tatters that had interlocked a bit. She felt the excitement in her chest flutter like a hyperactive butterfly. She wondered what she’d find.

Immediately, Wil saw that this paper also was not written in regular English. This was turning into a regular treasure hunt!

Although excited to crack another code, Wil also felt annoyance. Who was leaving these notes? For what purpose? Spies would have assigned a mission at this point. Fairies would surely get right to the point and not leave a person hanging on clues.

Wil looked over the symbols on this new cypher as she ate her way through the chicken fried substance and its accompanying instant potatoes. The “letters” were lines, dots, and some lines with dots. They were confusing enough to distract her from the lack of taste as she chewed.

Wil wondered if her keyboarding teacher next period would give them extra time at the end of class, so that she could do some searching. Looking over the lines and dots and line dots, Wil felt out of her element.

Once again, the interminable bell sound resounded in the halls. It was a depressing death knell tone in the lunchroom where Wil and slow eaters still sat.

Wil finished her fruit, some of the vegetable-shaped side dish, then shoved her roll in her shirt pocket to finish once she was done chewing the rest.

Would she solve this message? What would it say? Where would she go? Would she ever know who was writing them?


Continued from Thirteen.
Keep reading to Fifteen.

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