The Story of Ashley Mannings
My name is Ashley Mannings and I study at Saint Anderson’s Academy. My problems began shortly after moving into the dorm.
I lived in Magenta Dormitory and it had the weirdest set of rules ever. Most of them weren’t particularly troublesome though, so I stuck to them as much as I could – wouldn’t want to lose my scholarship over something stupid.
At the annual welcome party, I hit it off with a girl named Sarah. We got to know each other a little better: she studied chemistry and wanted to try out for hockey. We parted ways with a promise from me to give her tips.
1 August arrived. The rulebook said to paste red paper on our doors. I didn’t get the logic behind this, but whatever. I found a pink Post-it, figured that it was close enough, and pasted it outside.
The following day, I found Sarah with some dorm-mates.
“I heard footsteps stopping outside -“
“Me too! But it left soon after -“
I frowned. I hadn’t heard anything.
“Was it the night patrol?” I asked.
“My neighbour didn’t paste any paper outside -“
Wow, rude. I recognised Eric from the welcome party. Not liking how I’d been ignored, I tried again.
“I don’t -“
“And I haven’t seen him since!”
Seriously? Turning to Sarah, I gestured at Eric. She shrugged.
Over the day, it became evident that everyone was ignoring me. My questions in class were unanswered and my new friends walked right by. I informed Sarah and we tried to figure out why everyone was ostracising me.
“Hey Sarah, who’re you talking to?” It was Eric.
“Eric, this is Ashley. We met at the welcome party.”
Eric stared. I didn’t like that and was about to snap at him, until –
“Is this a joke? There’s no one there.”
More dorm-mates arrived and Eric asked if they could see me. My heart froze as one by one, they shook their head no. What kind of sick joke was this? In frustration, I swung at Eric. Dread coursed through my veins as my fist *went through his head*. He was unaffected. Whirling towards Sarah, I saw a look of horror on her face.
After that, Sarah started avoiding me. On days I saw her, I begged her to help me. How could she be so selfish? She was the only one who could see me! In anger, I flung random items at her. It didn’t take long before she dropped out.
I crashed the following year’s welcome party in hopes of finding someone who could see me. That person was Joshua. Unfortunately, he was like Sarah. Guess Joshua the Jock didn’t want to look uncool for having an “imaginary friend”. I made my anger known with a few well-timed “accidents”.
Eventually, someone offered to approach an RA. He didn’t return. I overheard that he had been transferred to a different campus.
But that’s okay. There’s always next year. I’ll attend every party, until I find someone to help me.