'Since when do we need to know maths?' I thought.
Glaring at the page, I finished the last sum. Placing my homework in my hand, I headed to the kitchen. Stuffing the page in my note folder, I then went to the fridge and pulled out the milk. Then getting the Rice Bubbles, I poured it into a bowl, the milk next. Placing it all back, I crunched on my cereal while trudging back to my room. The doorbell chimed. I placed my cereal on my desk and ran to the door, skidding on the polished floor to a stop. I unlocked it and, with my jaw falling open, stood out there gawking at my best friend Ashleigh Helm.
"Ashie!" I yelled, a smile plastering on my face.
She was about to say something but I quickly pulled her into a bear hug.
"You know, I need to breathe." She managed to say.
I let go and she took a deep breath.
"Thanks, I'm pretty sure I was going purple."
I let out a laugh, "When did you get back? You weren't meant to come back until another month!"
She smiled a sly smile, "You didn't think I'd miss your twelfth birthday, did you?"
"You came back for my birthday?! Just for me!?" My smile grew bigger.
"Yep, just for you."
I pulled Ashleigh into another bear hug. My smile was hurting. I pulled out and looked at her. I gasped. Over one year ago, Ashleigh had left for a big world wide trip, and was due back in November this year. She had defiantly grown. Although I was still small, she had grown taller then I remember. Her hair, which had been shoulder length, was now down to her waist. Ashleigh's eyes were more mature looking, like most of her face. Her clothes used to be very childish, but now, they were black, sleek and cool.
"Oh my god..." I began.
She did a little twirl.
"What do you think?" She asked.
"It's... it's just amazing!" I did my own sly smile. "So, any for me?"
She laughed. "Just wait for your birthday."
I did my pout face. "I don't want to wait though!"
She laughed. I joined in. Soon we were both holding our sides, doubling over in laughter. I looked behind her and noticed her mum standing there, smiling.
"Welcome back Natalie, I presume you enjoyed your trip?"
"Of course. I was sometimes wishing you were with us, but then I remembered how much our food bill would look like."
Her voice was like honey. Sweet. I turned back to Ashleigh when I remembered something.
"Just a sec," I said, running to my room.
I went to my draw and pulled out a parcel. I ran back, skidding on the floor again.
"Here, I never forgot."
Ashleigh took the parcel and opened it. In it was a beautiful Thomas Sabo necklace with a pendant of a Converse sneaker.
"Oh my god. Thank you so much!" She put it on.
"It looks good." I said.
"What is it for?"
"Your birthday, which has been, but still, you're my best friend."
She admired it, hanging from her neck.
"Thank you," she whispered again.
I looked past Ashleigh and Natalie to see my mum standing there with Cassie close to her. Cassie nodded to them both, then slipped past me and into the house. My mum was hugging Natalie. I looked at Ashleigh.
"Want to come in?" I asked.
"Sure." She replied.
We walked in and headed to my room.
Ashleigh laughed as I explained what had happened on the first day of school of this year. It was nearly the last. Natalie knocked on my door.
"Yes," I said.
"Ash has got to come home now and unpack."
Ashleigh groaned, "Can I sleep over?" She asked.
"Sorry hon, not tonight, this weekend maybe."
She smiled at that, "Cool."
"Now come on," insisted Natalie. "Bags need to be unpacked and your school bag needs to be packed."
Ashleigh frowned. "Back to school already?"
"Don't you want to see Emily tomorrow?"
Ashleigh was up and out the door already, "See you tomorrow Em!" She called out.
"You too!" I yelled back.
I heard mum say her goodbyes then a car leaving. I sat on my bed, waiting. My mum finally came in with a cup of tea. She handed it to me and sat next to me.
"So," I began. "Any improvements?"
"Not really, it hasn't gotten serious, so that's good."
My mum looked down at her hands.
"We just got to be careful, that's all. She could breakdown at any time, so be ready."
I nodded. Nothing else needed to be said. My mum got up and went to the kitchen. I moved to my desk, looking at the calender once more.