TITLE: After The Closing - The Voice
GENRE: Young Adult Fantasy
Layla looked around the room, trying not to give in to Headmistress Nesting’s stare. She felt an unusual lack of nervousness. Perhaps her mind was comforting her ahead of almost certain expulsion, which wouldn’t be so bad; she could leave even earlier than she had hoped.
The last two days had resulted in Layla being labelled as crazy by the other pupils. Which was likely to happen, Layla supposed, when you were repeatedly caught talking to – or even screaming at – yourself. Oh, and then there was that photo.
A clock behind Mrs Nesting’s head struck four, and four rounds of chiming followed.
As if snapped out of a trance, Nesting stood up and walked over to the front of her desk, sitting on it with her front to Layla.
‘Miss Roberts,’ said Nesting, her crinkled brow set among a broad shiny face. ‘Now I have seen the image you possessed in Mr Stepp’s class and I have to say it is extremely inappropriate in nature.’
She looked at Layla, as though hoping for a response, and continued.
‘I have to say that I don’t believe it was your material, so let’s just let that be shall we?’
Relieved and a little insulted that she was automatically considered incapable of doing anything risky, Layla went to stand. At this Nesting’s finger motioned her to be seated.
‘But while you are here, I think we should have a bit of a talk,’ said Nesting, her tone now more casual. ‘I’ve noticed you over the years Layla’.